July 5, 2006
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The BuzzFlash Mailbag
The opinions expressed in the Mailbag are not necessarily those of BuzzFlash. More reader opinion is at "Contributors." You can write to Mailbag at http://www.BuzzFlash.com/contact/mail.html. Guidelines for submissions are at BuzzFlash FAQ #18.
THIS IS PART 2 OF THE JULY 5, 2006 BUZZFLASH MAILBAG. CLICK HERE FOR PART 1.
Subject: Lindsey Graham's Vision of American Justice
Senator Lindsey Graham believes that the Supreme Court finding in Hamdan that detainees are entitled to the protections afforded by Common Article 3 of the Geneva Convention compromises the security of America. According to Graham:
“We can apply Geneva Convention concepts. But the Geneva Convention Common Article III is far beyond our domestic law when it comes to terrorism, and Congress can rein it in, and I think we should.”
“Congress holds the keys to the courtroom for military commissions. Congress can approve interrogation techniques that would not allow Geneva Convention Article III to compromise our security.”
The restrictions imposed by Article 3 are that we abstain from:
“(a) violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture; (b) taking of hostages; (c) outrages upon personal dignity, in particular, humiliating and degrading treatment; (d) the passing of sentences and the carrying out of executions without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples.”
Who could have imagined that there would come a time when a US senator would call for legislation to dispense with indispensable human rights, and to deliver American justice from the constraints of civilization?
Subject: Seattle Times Editorial Puts Bush and Congress in Their Place
Yet Another Great Editorial written by The Seattle Times.
War is no excuse to steamroll press (Seattle Times)
The Seattle Times Put Bush - and Congress - In Their Place - unlike republicans and conservatives who WANT A DICTATOR!!!!
I also hope everyone has read this Media Matters editorial, so they will know what papers still cherish the First Amendment and which papers despise the First Amendment.
The Seattle Times also threw rocks at Congress in their editorial for not doing THEIR JOBS of OVERSIGHT.
Congressional Oversight? What The Hell Is That?
Can you picture "President Hillary" doing what Bush is doing and the CRIES COMING FROM THE REPUBLICANS (and Lieberman) for I-M-P-E-A-C-H-M-E-N-T in a nano-second???
Wait a Minute...Wait a Minute...This Just In! I think Arlen Specter Is About To Speak About Having An Oversight Hearing!! Naw, Just More Hot Air from Specter and Still NO Oversight Investigations!!
We're getting soooo knee deep in it from the Republicans, BuzzFlash needs to go to a "Hypocrite OF THE DAY" format!!!
"Hypocrite of The Week" just doesn't keep-up with the pace of hypocrites they keep throwing at us!!
Subject: US media has made the SWIFT story about freedom of press, not privacy of finance
With the apologies, i.e. "explanations" of the NYT and LAT about why it was okay to publish the SWIFT story, the morphing of the story from being about US government access to millions of financial transactions - and millions of bank account identities - to a story about the freedom of the press is complete. The actual facts of the story, the legality of this action, the scope of the infringement on protection of privacy regulations, has been wiped aside for a nonsensical debate on freedom of the American press.
If, as Howard Kurtz (who has no clue what a bank transfer even IS) said on CNN yesterday, the US government only got access to "some accounts of terrorists" (which is absurd, how should that work, and if the gov't already knew who was a terrorist why aren't they arresting them?), then the NYT should follow up and through on this story and explain how this access worked. I notice SWIFT, on its website, has decided to simply ignore the issue, as has google, for when one googles SWIFT in the news one gets absolutely nothing! If the NYT or LAT does not follow through, then the European media must take up the slack.
It cannot be that financial information is illegally obtained and no one is accountable. SWIFT owes its users an explanation, and the people have a right to know what the scope of this event is, and also what it has actually gleaned, how long it will continue, and what happens to information which does not lead to terrorists, but to, for instance, illegal immigrants who send their families money, to politicians who send a lover money, or ordinary citizens whose basic rights have been infringed on.
The other issue, of course, is the sharing of this information with Israel. What does that mean, what is it used for, etc.?
The fact that the NYT and LAT editors even had to EXPLAIN why it was okay to publish the story, shows how confined the American so-called "free" press is; what has become of the story shows how easily the American media is distracted (the American public probably never understood this in the first place) from the real issue toward something superficial and irrelevant, and thus abandons the story for the distraction.
[BuzzFlash Note: SWIFT does have a statement on their website now, although it doesn't clarify much. Americans make a big issue of the press' role because a free press is a key feature of our democracy and enshrined in the Bill of Rights. Privacy of finance isn't. That's not to say that it doesn't matter .. just that we're no Switzerland.]
Subject: Mailbag 6/30/06
To the Buzzer who predicted that the next White House resident would be Jeb...I have tried to put that idea out of my mind, and if so, they are keeping it very quiet. My poor naive sister who is a democrat...living in Green county (home of Blunt and Ashcroft) says, of Jeb..."now he is the one I really like!" She must get a cable system in her house, so she does not have to watch local news and only PBS...which showed a "Partial Birth Abortion." You all know that is the republican buzzword for "Late term abortion." So now she is so anti abortion...like it is the worst problem we have right now.!
KJ Lovell, I am more outraged every single freekin day....what can I do?
Genie - I totally agree...If we thought Florida was bad...wait until we see all states with this system of voting. I am thinking of not voting until they get paper receipts on them. There have been all kinds of demonstrations of how they can be compromised lately.
To Sherman Hill...Gene Lyons and Joe Conason wrote "The Hunting of the President" about the bringing down of Bill Clinton...it is worth the read. They are almost opposites...Joe is sort of a city person...Gene Lyons, from what I have read, loves sitting on his fishing boat all day, on either the White or Buffalo rivers...in northern Arkansas. I think he writes a column once a week, for the Arkansas Gazette. The very first of the book...I don't remember if it is the intro...but, they tell of 1989, when the DLC met...and Lee Atwater spoke of "The old man" meaning GHW Bush, "Is going to lose it." Now, it seems that they were not worried about anyone running against him, except that 'young upstart' governor from Arkansas...after their pow wow...the only thing they could come up with against President William Jefferson Clinton...was that he might have an eye for the ladies. So they ran with that, and we all know the outcome.
Shirley ... St. Louis
Subject: Republicans Win in '06
I love your site-- but the single most important issue is voting machinery.
The republicans will win again if we allow them to control the counting of votes.
This is big. I knew a democratic precinct captain who had a KEY TO THE VOTING MACHINE.... That meant he changed votes from one party to another.
We all know this happens, let's stop it.
Subject: Bring Down Bush
Wanna bring down Bush? Well, Dorothy, you've always had the power. Recall, "Keep on shopping"? DON'T!
Subject: Stop Ignoring Stolen 2000 Election
I continue to be appalled by both Rolling Stone magazine and Bobby Kennedy Jr continuing to ignore Bush's theft of the 2000 election in Florida. There's no doubt that Al Gore won Florida.
The evidence is overwhelming and it's based on the actual votes that were never counted and not on a projection from a statistical analysis as is the case for Kerry in Ohio in 2004. For the record, 170,000 legally cast votes were never counted in Florida in 2000 despite the fact that Florida law required that they be counted. The Bush brothers knew that counting all of the uncounted votes in Florida meant victory for Al Gore. Subsequent counts of these uncounted votes prove beyond all reasonable doubt that Al Gore in fact got the most votes in Florida in 2000. The number of uncounted Florida votes far exceeds the alleged 537 vote margin of victory for Bush.
In addition, another 94,000 mostly black democratic voters were illegally removed from Florida's voting rolls by Jeb Bush and Katherine Harris before the 2000 election. Where are the investigations and the whistleblower lawsuits by Rolling Stone magazine and Bobby Kennedy Jr. to hold Jeb Bush and Katherine Harris accountable for ending democracy in America in Florida in 2000?
The euphemistic language makes me sick! Even in criticizing their own, the MSM just can't tell the truth. The Seattle Post-Intelligencer's characterization of the MSM's "deafening" silence on Kennedy's report as "bad news judgment" is one more deceptive semantic excuse.
No it wasn't! It was intentional conspiracy of the MSM to violate its 1st Amendment public trust and right to know. When the enemy does it, it's censorship, black-out and cover-up, a violation of international law, war crime and crime against humanity. When we do it, it's a "regrettable mistake," "failure of intelligence," "not newsworthy at the time," and now "bad news judgment."
Please, Buzz, more hypocrites of the week awards!
Subject: Hey Annie!! What Goes Around Comes Around!!
So Flame-Thrower-Coulter PLAGIARIZES Her Work, does she?
Guess some papers have finally figured her out. All she is doing is trying to sell her Plagiarized Books, Plagiarized Columns and Give Her Plagiarized Speeches to incite her crowd of followers. And please refresh my memory, but didn't Republicans go livid when a reporter at a "certain newspaper," known as THE NEW YORK TIMES, was found to have Plagiarized HIS COLUMNS? So I guess for Annie, it's OK for HER to PLAGIARIZE her work according to her band of Republican Following Hypocrites but woe to you, if a "Liberal Paper" is ever caught with a plagiarizer!
Yup, BuzzFlash, you can add another one to the ever mushrooming list of Hypocrites! What did the RNC do? Set off a "Chemical Weapon" that contained some "Hypocrite Infection" at the last RNC Convention, which contaminated all the party members? Sure looks like it worked! Also check out another E&P article titled "Shreveport Paper Considers Dropping Coulter."
I guess some papers are finally getting sick of Annie foaming at the mouth just to sell her wares. Looks like Annie's Words have come to smack her real hard like a boomerang, right into the back of her head!!
The History Channel had an interesting series on Sunday night entitled "Revolution." It was several one-hour segments about the events leading up to the Revolutionary War and those events changed the lives of many, many people. It's been a long time since I studied US History, so I relearned and also learned quite a bit watching it.
Several things really struck a resonant chord in me as I considered the events that happened all those years ago and what is happening in this country now at the hands of Bushco.
It was interesting to learn that, at that time, the Crown considered the colonies to be upstarts and also insurgents. The loyalists vs. the "freedom" fighters didn't trust each other until the British, assisted by the Hessians decided to "occupy" the colonies -- taking what they needed with respect to food, clothing and other supplies and started wreaking havoc amongst the colonists. There were also incidents of sexual assaults.
The larger point here is that these events, individually and collectively motivated a divided people to rise up and fight the invaders -- the British and the Hessians.
Now, here we are -- all these years later under the misleadership of Bushco doing the same exact thing to the people of Iraq. Is it any wonder there is an insurgency there? Is it any wonder that they want us to leave? Is it any wonder that the occupiers are being killed by the natives?
Just this morning, out of curiosity, I looked up the member countries of the UN. The countries of Afghanistan, Iraq, and Iran are all long-time members of the UN -- almost since its inception. I can still somewhat morally justify to myself our/UN military action in Afghanistan (although I still wonder why when the Taliban said they WOULD turn OBL over Bush didn't accept the offer). In fact, we had the support of other countries. However, Iraq is not justifiable in any way, shape or form. Iran will not be justifiable either if Bush doesn't adhere to international law.
My question now is: When will Bushco be apprehended, charged and tried for international war crimes? They are guilty of war crimes and should be treated as such and afforded the same "respect" that other war criminals are afforded.
We should send each and every one of the Bushistas who were participatory in any way in this illegal War on Iraq to Gitmo and let them bunk with the uncharged "enemy combatants" who are being detained there.
That would be KARMA.
Subject: Our President Is Not Big Daddy
We are not children, and our president is not Big Daddy.
Our founders disdained the notion that The People were too stupid to control their own government. In fact, when they created our government, they put The People in charge -- they made us sovereign.
We get to decide who our leaders will be, who will make the laws and who will execute those laws.
To guarantee we would have the information we need to be intelligent and informed voters, our founders gave us a free press. They understood that the role of a free press was to give the public all the information that was obtainable -- especially about our government officials -- holding back only information that could directly put lives in danger.
If we permit the president to decide for us what we need to know and when we need to know it, we might as well be living in China, where the government just drafted legislation giving the Chinese government power to decide what can be published in the newspapers and what cannot.
Here in America, Bush and Cheney have been making noise about the press's revelation that the international banks have been tracking and blocking the financial transactions of terrorists. How silly can these two men get? That information is posted on the White House website.
Thirteen days after 9/11, Bush issued the "Executive Order on Terrorist Financing" -- which can be read on the White House website -- blocking the domestic and international financial transactions of terrorists, terrorist groups and anyone associated with terrorist groups. Read it, along with the White House "Fact Sheet on Terrorist Financing Executive Order," dated September 24, 2001, on the White House website.
Don't let Bush and Cheney's hysterical outbursts fool you, be an informed voter.
"Executive Order on Terrorist Financing" [September 24, 2001] at: http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2001/09/20010924-1.html
"Fact Sheet on Terrorist Financing Executive Order" [September 24, 2001] at: http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2001/09/20010924-2.html
"Where Hu [President Hu Jintao] is concerned, newspapers cannot stray from official New China News Agency reports, which according to agency journalists can be issued only after approval from party censors."
" ...[Chinese government] officials charged with vetting information available to the public have tightened their grip in recent months." http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,25689-2246018,00.html
A BuzzFlash Reader
Dear People at BuzzFlash,
I have been on hiatus for a few days and came back and I find that this country of ours is so thick in the muck of corruption that I can scarcely see how it can even breathe, but it does. I really cannot celebrate the Fourth of July holiday this year because I truly feel that we don't have a country any more. Can't get away from anything because there are too many rules and restrictions that you cannot go anywhere else anyway.
Besides, everyone else is following our "Great Example." Our neighbors to the North are following ours by making their own government like our own. Mexico is having a disagreement over their recent elections. (Does this sound similar to 2000 and 2004 here in the U.S?)
Teachers cannot even teach their students as they are being made scapegoats if 'No Child Left Behind' does not work in their classrooms. (Are they guilty of 'bad teaching if the support does not come to them that they need? Are they responsible for that?)
The administration now, we have found out, are checking our bank accounts as well as monitor info on our phones and cell phones. The federal and state governments look to largely increase (majorly) at every turn the fines they want want to impose. The latest thing being considered is to put a chip the size of a piece of rice in the skin of an Alzheimer's' patient! (Come on, people. My mother has that or something akin to it but do I want a chip inserted in her? NO FR-----G WAY IN HELL! I am concerned for her safety, yes, but there is only so much one can do to keep them safe. From there the chips will be put into YOU and ME! I want all of us to feel a little free, even if I may have dementia. I WOULD RATHER BE DEAD than have a chip put in my body! This is how strongly I feel about the whole thing.
The very worst things are the privacies taken away from us and secrets kept from us all in the name of Homeland Security. Jimmy Carter has said this administration keeps too many secrets from us and he is dead right about it. This is what the ACLU is for, to protect all of us from the dangers of losing our liberties. I do not care if others say that they are "bleeding-heart liberals." I am sure they don't care, they have heard it before and they will keep on trying to do it.
The biggest thing we must do in the ensuing months, and we only have 4 of them, is to ensure above all that we stand up for fair elections this fall. I pray that this fall will not be the downfall of America.
A BuzzFlash Reader
Everyone knows Lieberman isn't a Democrat anyway. What's news. I wouldn't be surprised if he ran as a Repuglican.
Nancy Lynn Nagy
Subject: Olbermann or Morgan?
I cannot discern from your headline whether you have cast Olbermann or Morgan as the right-wing nutcase.
I don't know Ms. Morgan from kosher bacon, but I've always thought of Olbermann as a slightly left of center fop.
Please fill me in.
[BuzzFlash Note: Re Olbermann named Melanie Morgan "Worst Person" for suggesting NY Times' Keller might deserve "gas chamber." Another Psychotic, Pathological Right Wing Commentator Allowed on Air. Here's more: "OLBERMANN: But our winner: San Francisco radio host Melanie Morgan. Not only has she suggested seriously that New York Times executive editor Bill Keller be jailed for treason, but now she tells the San Francisco Chronicle, quote: 'If he were to be tried and convicted ... I would have no problem with him being sent to the gas chamber.' Hey, somebody want to check Ms. Morgan for light bulbs? Melanie Morgan: today's 'Worst Person in the World.'"]
Today's revelation that an innocent Texas man, Carlos de Luna was put to death for a murder by another (Carlos Hernandez) on the heels of Scalia's scathing separate majority opinion against Justice Souter's dissent in Kansas v. Marsh, Michael Lee II last month in favor the the death penalty is dark, poetic "justice." It once again confirms, like all his other legal rants, that Scalia is always either intellectually dishonest or "brilliantly" tainted with inverted reasoning at best.
Scalia scams, "[I]t should be noted at the outset that the dissent does not discuss a single case – not one – in which it is clear that a person was executed for a crime he did not commit. If such an event had occurred in recent years, we would not have to hunt for it; the innocent’s name would be shouted from the rooftops by the abolition lobby.”
In these times of judicial hacks and ideological extremists continually forumed by corrupted media, don't expect Carlos de Luna's name to be so treated. But I do dream that poor Carlos will treat Mr. Injustice to a genuine Vaffenculo in the next life!
Subject: Lou Dobbs
Let me start out by saying that I'm a left-wing democrat. I am a 32 year union member of UAW local 599. And I am proud to say that Michael Moore was raised in a suburb of my hometown of Flint. I respect Michael for what he has tried to accomplish for us; meaning he has been trying to warn the citizens of our country that 'Corporate America' has been biting the hand that feeds them for years by shipping good paying jobs to the lowest bidders just to make more money! I believe Michael suggested in his book DOWNSIZE THIS, why don't 'they' just sell cocaine, instead of cars? I could be wrong because it's been awhile since I read the book ... that it would be cheaper to sell cocaine (no overhead) ... cause once you've sold your own country down the drain, what does it matter what you do, you're still a scum sucking bastard! And I think that Lou Dobbs may soon be coming to the same conclusion.
But let me come to my point(s).. Lou Dobbs, for the past year or so, has been talking about the exporting of America. His show used to talk about business and money from probably a conservative point of view. I'm probably guessing here! Except one show I watched, had him talking about how many jobs we were losing and he asked viewers to phone in if their company was shipping their job out of the country. That is what started the ball rolling.
From that point on, most of his show has centered on that theme. He started taking polls asking viewers how they felt about different things that our government was or was not doing about the loss of jobs. He has discussed in detail how the companies not only take our jobs, but all the other b***s*** they do in order to make bigger profits for themselves! Unless you watch his show everyday you'll miss all the guests he has on and how he politely fights with them! He has had on economists, conservative editors of business magazines, and the whole gambit of mostly right-wing pundits who put out talking points for big business. He mostly makes fools of them, because most of them have absolutely no idea how 80% of working people are affected by the people who pay those jackasses to write and speak for big business.
Dobbs' shows consist of everything that is screwing our nation up, from tax breaks for the wealthy, to a bunch of do nothings in Congress. Yes, he has referred to the fact that the republicans are in charge...but he does hold back a little of completely blaming them...and I'll tell you why...last year CNN starting referring to his show as 'COMMENTARY'...which means that the republicans are afraid that too many of us are paying attention...so by calling it commentary...it's maybe a little less than factual...but any of us who pay attention know that he's telling it like it is!
When Dobbs talks about immigration...and I watched all of his shows that discuss this...he has said many, many times from the VERY BEGINNING THAT "REPUBLICANS WANT MEXICANS FOR CHEAP LABOR, AND DEMOCRATS WANT THE HISPANIC VOTE." He has said many times that Corporate America is behind this uprising, and they want it to take advantage of the people coming here illegally, so they can pay them under the table and avoid FICA TAXES AND MINIMUM WAGES. Dobbs uses the online polls from his show to make a point that most of us understand the b***s*** that goes on in DC and big business.
If Dobbs is a racist, then so am I! And damnit all, I'm no damn racist! I understand that the Mexicans are desperately trying to provide money for their families, even if it means crossing the border. What our government (not this one of course) should be doing is putting the pressure on the Mexican government to demand that CORPORATIONS MUST PAY A DECENT WAGE AND ALLOW UNIONS TO REPRESENT THE AVERAGE WORKER AGAINST UNSAFE WORKING CONDITIONS! If we really had a bunch of moral congressmen, they would be demanding this of Mexico.
Instead our government is representing the interests of corporate America, and working people of both countries be damned! Corporate America is playing this racist card through the use of pundits, AND the democrats in congress are falling right in line.The Democrats we have right now are so concerned with taking the safe road, that they are letting the Republicans water down legislation that SHOULD MAKE IT A CRIME TO HIRE SOMEONE WHO HAS CROSSED THE BORDER ILLEGALLY. Instead they talk about the melting pot and make it sound like it's all about the high road...and in the meantime corporate America is outsourcing good paying jobs and insourcing cheap labor.
Tell me, how many jobs will your children and grandchildren have to work just to pay for their rent or their mortgage payment at the rate these bastards are selling us down the drain? All Dobbs is pointing out is, that if we don't vote these bastards out of office, there isn't going to be a MIDDLE CLASS!
Subject: Joe Lieberman
Am I wrong to be sick over this gang mentality to get Joe Lieberman? If the Bushies were targeting a "too liberal republican" like Snowe or Chafee with a conservative primary challenger what would we think? I am a realist first. I don't agree with many of his ideas but when did the democrats have to walk in lock step? I guess I wouldn't mind if the voters of CT turned him out, but a combination of moveon and Kos, etc., makes me uncomfortable. One of the websites had his voting record, if you checked further other democrats voted nearly the same and some were more "middle-class friendly." But he wasn't alone.
I thought the idea was to try to take back congress, not defeat democrats. These next elections are life or death for our democracy-not for scoring points. They could win an election and lose the war.
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Celebrating the Declaration of Independence
Dear Buzz and Buzzers,
Even as I wish everyone a Happy Fourth of July, I cannot think of a better way to celebrate this day than to take another look at the Declaration of Independence we are celebrating today.
The Declaration of Independence was the work of a group of our founders.
Yes, it was primarily the genius of Thomas Jefferson that put to paper the intent of the founders, but after he submitted it to the committee of five (including John Adams and Benjamin Franklin) and to the full Congress, the document was altered in many places (to the great distress of Jefferson).
Today, we should pause a moment to be grateful that the group of men we call The Founders was there at a time when it was critical to our nation.
Imagine what would have happened to us if, instead of those Founders, men like Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Addington, Scalia, Frist, Rove and their ilk had been given the responsibility of winning our freedom from England and creating our form of government.
I shudder at the notion.
Have you ever read The Declaration past the first and second paragraphs? Probably not. How about taking ten minutes to read it through today.
And, yes, in those days, we DID care about the opinion of the rest of the world. The Bushites scoff at caring about the opinion of the world, and that is just one of the many reasons we need to be grateful that we had at the helm of our nation in its beginning the caliber of men we had, instead of the kind of men who directed, for instance, the French Revolution -- or the bunch in charge of our country now.
"... a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."
In Jefferson's last letter, ever, he wrote:
And, I like this one ...
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Osama Bin Laden's Videos
I know this isn't a news flash. But I'm trying to keep tabs on when Osama bin Laden's videos show up. It seems it's always around the time when Bush is in trouble with the American people, like when his polls takes nose dives, or the time just before the 2004 presidential elections. Am I wrong but wasn't there one around the time after Katrina hit and the American people were upset with how Bush and his "Brownie" caused so much pain, suffering and death with the victims in New Orleans?
If someone can let me know where I can go see if I'm correct on my hunches I'd appreciate it.
[BuzzFlash Note: Actually, bin Laden was laying low in 2005 (Katrina) from what we can tell, but did pop up just before the 2004 elections. Check the links in this article: Time To Reel Off Another bin Laden Tape? -- A BuzzFlash News Analysis.]
Subject: we are NOT safer as a country....this is awful-what has Bush done?
hey, how about the claims from bush, cheney and the republicans, how they have made us safer? sure enough, n. korea fired those missiles and iran one day will have nuclear (i would too, if i were iran, to tell you the truth--because we attacked iraq because they did not have nuclear--any country in its right mind would go nuclear so usa would not attack them). this administration has never protected our borders...all we do is pour money into halliburton and spend money on iraq a major loss for us. we never should have attacked them. oh my God. what have the republicans and this administration done?
... and john kerry thought one-party talks were the way to go with north korea. bush did not. now look. don't you think an article on what if one-party talks had been done?
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