Monday, February 20, 2006


We all have built into us the capacities for kindness and creativity and beauty. It's a matter of perspective. As Einstein said, "The single most important decision any of us will ever make is whether or not to believe that the universe is friendly." It's your choice. (If you're sick of all the bad news, read Wayne Dyer's amazing words below these articles.)

Think about this: UAE is a state-owned company. What happens when things change in the state -- when leadership changes or a coup takes over? Obviously this whole thing is coming down because Bush & Co. has been doing family business with these people for many years. UAE must own Bush or Bush owes these guys, and he cannot guarantee our safety unless he gives in. They must really want this deal! I wonder why. What's strange is that now I think everything is staged. Farenheit 911 was RIGHT! Michael Moore should be redeemed by all the doubters. 911 happened on Bush's watch for a reason. Think about it.

Something to think about: The backlash in Bush's own party against Bush for the UAE port deal may pay off big in the elections next year; it gives these Republican congressmen a way to look good to their constituents. Wouldn't that be weird if this was the sole reason for the "sale talk"? Just kidding, I'm not a conspiracy theorist, but it almost seems too outrageous of an idea to be believed. Here's what's strange: we are handing over control of our ports to a Muslim regime. The very reason Osama Bin Laden came after us in 9/11 was that we were in bed with the Saudis for capitalistic reasons, which OBL thinks is sacrilege: a direct affront to Muslim holy scripture, at least OBL's version. If his duty is to kill all non-Muslims and those who collude with non-Muslims, what's to stop him from blowing up the UAE itself or planting people within the organization? Even if Dubai has all the safeguards, doesn't this very fact cause Al Qaeda to be more motivated to attack us again -- through our own ports? I mean, talk about bringing the enemy over to our house!! On the other hand, maybe UAE would protect its investment and hire extra forces and advanced technology to protect the ports. WHAT DO YOU THINK? He have to feel that we are living in a world that still makes sense and have hope; otherwise we are going to defeat ourselves.
* For those who don't know, I am talking about Bush selling control of our major ports to the United Arab Emirates, Dubai)

** EVERYONE: You have to read MARK CRISPIN MILLER'S AMAZING BOOK: FOOLED AGAIN: How the Right Stole the 2004 Election and How They'll Steal the Next One Too.



Interview with Wayne Dyer continued:

FC: But it's a pretty violent, messy planet, isn't it?

Dyer: It is. But for every act of violence and messiness there are a million acts of kindness and goodness. It just depends where you look. And when I look around at virtually anyone or anything on the planet, I can see another face of intention - beauty.

FC: In an effort to practice kindness, you recommend viewing every human encounter as a "holy relationship," the ability to celebrate and honor others, no matter who. But what about when you encounter people who are irritating, rude or even destructive?

Dyer: Generally, I try to stop myself from getting frustrated. I'm not a hundred percent successful, but I'm a thousand times better than I used to be. Anyone who's angry, nasty or rude is really offering a plea to be loved. I play a game with myself, trying to convert them from what I call low-energy emotions that drain us - frustration, irritation, anger and impatience - into high-energy emotions that sustain us - love, caring, kindness.

FC: How do you do it?

Dyer: By asking that surly waiter or harried airline clerk something about themselves or by expressing empathy, "Where are you from? It must be tough standing on your feet for eight hours." Anything to let a person know that, in that moment, I'm thinking more about them than about myself. And you know what happens? Instantly you see a smile.

FC: So paired with kindness would be another face of intention, what you call receptivity. No one and no thing is rejected?

Dyer: Exactly. Whenever you have a thought that excludes or judges anyone else, you aren't defining them. You're defining yourself as someone who needs to judge others.

FC: But don't we all judge one another?

Dyer: Yes, we do. But doing that less is one of those things we want to practice. Anytime I judge another harshly, I always find myself feeling worse.

FC: So when you're feeling offended by others...

Dyer: Remember this rule: Stop taking yourself so seriously! Get your ego out of the way and connect back to kindness - that from which you came.

FC: In your book, you write that controlling ego is intention's enemy.

Dyer: Ego is the part of us that believes: I am what I have, I am what I do. I am what others think of me. All this is just an illusion. The problem? If you are what you do, then who are you when you don't do it any longer? If you are what you have - then when you no longer have it, you no longer have any value!

The truth is that we are all spiritual beings. And when you see yourself as a piece of God, then you see yourself as connected to everything and everyone. In the recovery movement, they call what I'm talking about letting go and letting God. (If you're uncomfortable with the word God, just add an o and make it Good. The two words are interchangeable.) It just means allowing this divine source of kindness, beauty and creativity to be the dominant force in your life - whatever you're doing. I truly believe that God writes all the books and builds all the bridges. Sure, I sit down for six or seven hours a day with my pen and pads - but the message moves though me and I just allow.

FC: And when we're able to align ourselves with the power of intention, how will our lives change?

Dyer: I think you'll experience calmness where there used to be anxiety. You'll leave others feeling energized, so people will want to be around you. You'll start seeing miracles showing up - the right person, unanticipated abundance. You'll feel like you're collaborating with the universe instead of it working against you.

FC: Finally, you write that, "Your job is not to say how - it's to say yes!" What do you mean?

Dyer: I mean that the answer to how is yes! When you say yes to life, you attract divine guidance. When you're inspired, you're collaborating with fate. Everything starts working for you.


Revote in Ohio After More Votes Than Voters Recorded on Diebold Touch-Screen Voting Machines!
Court Orders Special Re-Vote Tomorrow After 'Failure' of Montgomery County, OH's New AccuVote TSX Machines!
County one of forty-four to implement new touch-screen machines for last November's election resulting in inexplicable results...

US Church Alliance: Washington is 'Raining Down Terror' with Iraq War, Other Policies: Statement from representatives of the 34 U.S. members of World Council of Churches
by Brian Murphy

PORTO ALEGRE, Brazil - A coalition of American churches sharply denounced the U.S.-led war in Iraq on Saturday, accusing Washington of "raining down terror" and apologizing to other countries for "the violence, degradation and poverty our nation has sown." We lament with special anguish the war in Iraq, launched in deception and violating global norms of justice and human rights. We mourn all who have died or been injured in this war. We acknowledge with shame abuses carried out in our name. "Hurricane Katrina revealed to the world those left behind in our own nation by the rupture of our social contract," said the statement. The churches said they had "grown heavy with guilt" for not doing enough to speak out against the Iraq war and other issues. The statement asked forgiveness for a world that's "grown weary from the violence, degradation and poverty our nation has sown."

The World Council of Churches includes more than 350 mainstream Protestant, Anglican and Orthodox churches; the Roman Catholic Church is not a member. The U.S. groups in the WCC include the Episcopal Church, the Presbyterian Church (USA), the United Methodist Church, several Orthodox churches and Baptist denominations, among others.

Our country responded (to the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks) by seeking to reclaim a privileged and secure place in the world, raining down terror on the truly vulnerable among our global neighbours . . . entering into imperial projects that seek to dominate and control for the sake of national interests," said the statement. "Nations have been demonized and God has been enlisted in national agendas that are nothing short of idolatrous."

"The message also accused U.S. officials of ignoring warnings about climate change and treating the world's "finite resources as if they are private possessions." It went on to criticize U.S. domestic policies for refusing to confront racism and poverty.

© Copyright 2006 Associated Press


As reported in yesterday's Middletown Journal, a special "re-vote" will be held tomorrow in Montgomery county, OH on an issue where last November's election results were set aside due to more votes being cast on Diebold's AccuVote TSX touch-screen voting machines than there were actually registered voters who voted!

MARYLAND: In a Letter to Election Board, Guv of Diebold's Model State Declares He 'No Longer Has Confidence in Their Ability to Conduct Fair and Accurate Elections. Maryland's Republican Governor Issues Devastating Blow to Diebold!
Calls for Paper Ballots, Decries Lack of Security, 1000% Increase in Maintenance Cost for Diebold Voting System!

A brutal condemnation of the MD Elections Administrator, Linda Lamone, charging that her work and that of her staff, has been "primarily on behalf of partisan legislators and their interests and not on the interests of the citizens of Maryland." Maryland was the "model state" for Diebold. It was amongst the first to roll out a near state-wide adoption of the new paperless Diebold DRE (touch-screen) voting machines after the 2000 election.

In the letter sent by Maryland's Republican governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr. to the State Board of Elections on Wednesday, he declares that he "no longer [has] confidence in the State Board of Elections’ ability to conduct fair and accurate elections in 2006."

Citing the "widespread national concern about the reliability and security of electronic voting systems," the decertification and denial of certification of Diebold around the country, and the need to "get aggressive in responding to citizens' concerns over public confidence in the elections system," Ehrlich says it's time to demand paper ballots once again in the State of Maryland.

Ehrlich in a letter to BoE Chairman, Gilles Burger, "the voters of Maryland should be allowed to vote a paper ballot or have a voter verification paper-trail to electronic voting as reassurance to voters that their votes are being accurately cast."

In his excoriating letter to Burger, the Governor goes on to cite the 78% increase in base cost for the system over original estimates and the -- sit down for this -- "1000% increase for estimates of the annual maintenance costs for this system."



  1. Freedon Fan said "Worf certainly anyone can change almost anything...if they want to. As debilitating as their religion is, Muslims could still probably change eventually if the west had an abundance of this strength to offer. This has been my hope for some time, but lately I've become discouraged by the cacophony of division I hear and the inherent weakness it represents. How can we convince our enemy to change if we are divided ourselves?"

    Freedom Fan I agree with you that we need to try to foster change in a positive type of way, but I dont think saying change or we will kill you is a way to bring about that change, all that will do is cause them to hate us and unite against us.

    while installing democracy in iraq my sound all noble and flowery on paper it is the wrong direction to go. as i said in a previous post that I will repost in this blog, the war on terrorism and the war in Iraq are two completely seperate and distinct things, and abandoning the war on terror to invade iraq and install democracy is a mistake. In my mind this is akin to going on an expensive around the world vacation when you cant make the mortgage payment.

    our deficit is ballooning and our country is on the verge of bankruptcy, I feel our priorities should be making our country safer and fighting terrorism, not installing democracy in Iraq. we should use our limited resources to secure our borders and ports and to help root out terrorism.

    When I say root out terrorism I think we should be spending money on developing intelligence to infiltrate these terror cells and destroy them from with in via covert operations, although that does not rule out military action as well if neccessary. additionally we should be supporting and working with moderate countries that desire change but are afraid of the fundamentalists starting a coup and seizing power, i remember hearing that Saudi Arabia wanted to become more moderate but many of the leaders were afraid of fundamentalists overthrowing them if they embraced western values or support America, we need to cultivate trust and help foster change in a positive way rather than saying become what we want you to become or we will kill you. change only comes through wanting to change, you cant force someone to change.

  2. I have one question, if we were to distill Bush's prime objective or at least what he claims to be his prime objective down to a single phrase or sound bite, I think it would be keeping our citizens and country safe.

    Now here's my question, if the prime objective is to keep our citizen's and country safe domestically, then wouldnt it make much more more sense to take our 200,000 or so troops and utilize them to secure our borders and ports and too seek out and destroy real terrorists like Osama and Al Queda rather than making them targets in a civil war/insurgency in a foreign land that had absolutely nothing to do with the real terrorists that attacked us.

    while it may sound all benevolent and flowery to want to liberate another country from an oppressive dictator and install democracy, if protecting our own citizens like Bush claims is the primary objective shouldnt we worry about protecting our own citizens first rather that helping foreigners. Our ports are still not secure, neither are our borders, and the emergency response for hurricaine Katrina was pitiful, shouldnt we work om helping our own citizens before we worry about a foreign country.

    Now having said that, I dont believe for a minute our primary objective is just to liberatre Iraq and install democracy, I think thats a side benefit and the fair cloak the men of power use to justify the war, I think the real reasons were to defend the petro dollar as Clif said, as well as to build up their oil infrastructure and get their production capacity cranking to break the pricing power of OPEC, aditionally there are all the lucrative contracts rebuilding Iraq as well as many reasons we may never know.

    One thing I do know is that despite what the Bush Administration says the War on Terror and the War In Iraq are two completely distinct things and it annoys me to no end that our government abandoned the War on Terror to go wage war in Iraq, every day this goes on our safety is compromised domestically, both because our resources are being used for questionable purposes instead of what they are being claimed to be used for or what they should be used for, and also because we are stirring up more hatred of us and helping these terrorist recruit.

    I am tired of hearing our government spew lies that we are making our country safer by being in Iraq, or that there is a link between Iraq and the terrorists, or that these people hate us because of our freedom, if that is the case then maybe Bush is trying to appease them by taking away our freedoms and civil rights all as he claims to "keep us safe"

    Having a company from the UAE guard our ports is another highly dubious decision by this administration akin to having the fox guard the chicken coup, if the terrorist come from the middle east dont you think putting a middle eastern country in charge of guarding our ports is questionable at best, I remember in the past most foreign telecom mergers were turned down because of national security, now they are allowing a foreign company to secure our ports, I find this disturbing, however if it is allowed I feel our leaders who are in charge of national security should be held to a higher standard than most people, for instance if a this results in a terrorist attack directly related to their misconduct, negliigence or incompetent then I believe they should be facing hard jail time, and if there was misconduct were they knowingly compromised our countrys safety for personal gain, then I feel that is TREASON, and they should either get life in prison or swing from the gibet like many traitors did in the past.

  3. And FF, I feel there is a big differnce between unconditional love and blind loyalty, while I may love my country unconditionally, I am not blindly loyal to its leaders who are there to serve us, if they are taking us down a path i feel will lead to disaster I am not going to just jump on the train and close my eyes and hope the wreck isnt too bad, no, i'm going to try and get them to change course and avert the train wreck.

    same goes for your analogy of family, while I may love my family unconditionally, it does not mean I will blindly support any heinous thing they may do, trust and loyalty must be earned, blind trust is a dangerous thing. I agree with what you said that we should take responsibility for our own success and failures, but that doesnt mean if our children, government, friends, etc.. are heading in a bad direction we shouldnt let them know that what they are doing is wrong and give them support and direction to change.

  4. Anonymous9:08 AM


    Do you really think that abandoning the International scene will help the west in the long run. This was tried in the 30's and resulted in the rise of Hitler and such dictatorships. Indeed the withdrawl by western nations over the past few dozens years from these now invaded areas of the world has resulted in terror groups growing there.

    A forgien policy has to be more long term and comprehensive than a plan by any single winner in the internal power struggles of the US. That nation, the US has taken the lead, want it or not in defining the west to the rest of the world.

    That definition has to be clear and long term without regard to self absorbsion or economic might. Hard to run the world by fairplay it is..

  5. Mike, I will respond to you on the previous thread. I don't want to hijack Ms. Cornell's topic this early in the game.

    I haven't studied this vote rigging controversy, but it would appear to be just another bogus left-wing conspiracy, like the Republicans will bring back the draft, Dubya planned the WTC attack, evil corporations are oppressing the masses, etc.

    Otherwise it would be front page news in the NY Times, seeBS, CNN, and other leftist propaganda factories. If Elephants-Stole-The-Election-Gate could be proved it would be bigger than Watergate or Monica-Gate. Brad has been beating this horse for a while, but I'm pretty sure it has assumed room temperature.

    Here's a couple of questions that if someone can answer credibly, I will become interested in this topic:

    Weren't the Democrats represented in the process to ensure that the voting machines were accurate? Who were the Democrats responsible for ensuring accuracy? If they failed to detect that the system was flawed, shouldn't those Democrats be the center of this controversy? Please tell me their names (you do know who they are don't you?).

    In the first election, the Democrats sued over hanging chads in Florida, the vote was subsequently counted and recounted ad nauseum and the results were always the same: Dubya won--MoveOn.

    So they bring in electronic voting machines in the second election and Dubya wins by an even greater margin. Naturally the Democrats blame the voting machines.

    Democrats just can't accept the fact that the majority of voters reject their ideas; most folks don't want socialism and third trimester abortion.

    In order to be elected, Liberals must pretend to be Conservative, and after deceitful Bill Clinton parsed the word "is", folks just aren't buying that shtick anymore. I doubt Peoria will buy that Hillary is really a Conservative either, but we shall see.

    Voting machine rigging is simply Democrat wishful thinking--a tempest in a teapot. Deal.

    BYW I'm pretty sure I saw BigFoot in my backyard last night.

  6. FF, even if no impropriety did occur just as in the case of port security, shouldnt we err on the side of caution, if there is a flaw in the voting machines that could allow people to hack in and alter elections what is so wrong with going back to paper ballots and putting this controversy to rest for future elections.

  7. George, I am not advocating isolationism like in the 30s or a withdraw from the international scene, what i'm saying is that we should use our limited resources to make our country safer and fight terrorism, not nation building and installing democracy in other countries, if you read my previous post i said we should be building up our intelligence and fighting terrorism through covert operations, we should try to destroy them from within, we should also be trying to win the trust of moderate regimes who actually want to change but are afraid of being overthrown by radical fundamentalists, we need to support and protect these regimes and show we have a commitment to help them change and can be trusted. we cant force other countries to accept democracy or our way of life if they dont want to, but we should be supporting those who do and who are opposed to terrorism as we are.

    think how the invasion of Iraq looks to the rest of the world, how come we didnt invade a poor African country with no valuable resources to overthrow their dictator and install democracy.??/

  8. Anonymous10:05 AM

    The ballot box issue in some way is a technology issue. A method of secure digital signatures attached to each ballot without permitting the compromise of the information contained with respect to any side has to be fully devised. The technology is still evolving and must be kept under close scrutiny in order that no impropriaties are taken by any group.

    Technology will move forward; hopfully lowering the cost of democratic government but verifiable safeguards must be implaced to facilitate a just result.

    Mike I agree in part with what you say.
    but Invade a poor country like Grenada ? the US did that too, but today maybe Grenada is better off. The point is that the peoples of these nations will have an exposure to a diffrent form of government that may lead them to aller that which is propelling them to committ the acts they are doing.

    The advent of oil money has propelled the peoples of these lands unto the world scene ,ye they do not as yet have a full knowldge of or understanding of the last 500 years of changes in the west. Sadly military intervention has been used to push forward the convergence of ideas and ideology.

  9. FF, even if no impropriety did occur just as in the case of port security, shouldnt we err on the side of caution, if there is a flaw in the voting machines that could allow people to hack in and alter elections what is so wrong with going back to paper ballots and putting this controversy to rest for future elections.

    Fraud is far easier with paper; paper is more difficult to manage and easier to forge. In the 21st century, the foundation of the financial world is entirely electronic--it is more efficient and more secure. I just bought a $3,000 hi-def plasma TV over the internet. I also use an ATM for cash, have a microwave oven, a fax machine, and a computer, but no typewriter, no buggy, no buggy whip. Paper is for Luddites. Aren't Democrats supposed to be "progressive"?

    Perhaps Brad or Ms. Cornell could provide a single example of an actual uncounted or duplicate vote which occurred as a result of electronic voting machine fraud. Using unsupported anecdotes from whining politicians who lose elections is hardly credible.

    Besides doesn't everyone get a receipt when they vote? I always do. The receipt has a control number which can be traced into the system--presto--an audit trail. This is ancient technology.

    No this whole rigged election thang is a major yawn.

  10. You apparenlty have no idea how EASY it would be to drop in worm to change every other democratic vote to republican, or vice versa. In fact, it could easily be done, and be virtually untraceable. This is one more area where your lack of knowledge is apparent, and your judgement is thereby flawed.

    Very troublesome indeed. Well that's the last time I ever use an ATM! Please notify the New York Times about this outrage immediately.

    Perhaps to demonstrate, you could hack this blog and make Ms. Cornell appear to be a Republican--that would be hilarious. While you're at it can you hack my bank to provide an extra couple grand? I'm getting kinda short on cash.

    Maybe you could also show me the studies using random statistical tests where the control numbers on voters receipts were traced into the system and shown to be fraudulent or missing.

    It is unfortunate indeed that the Democrat party did not consult with someone who commands your vast knowledge before agreeing to install these new-fangled electronic thang-a-ma-jigs which are so dog-gone easy to hack. I say we stick with hanging chads.

    BTW if the Democrats win in the next election, can we safely assume that this dastardly breach of security has been properly addressed?

  11. Kirk said "We can't cram enlightenment down these guys throats can we?
    Doesn't it seem that this kind of change or paradigm shift needs to come from within? We aren't going to be able to force a Pax Americana on these people unless we are willing to treat them like we did the american indians.... And I hope that we have evolved enough to see the unacceptability of this option. "

    kirk i agree, these people have to want to change, the only way to force them to change and win despite what the right wingers say is genocide like we did to the american indians, like clif said there is no way to successfully defeat an insurgency short of genocide, and if the Neo Cons are being truthful when they say they are not for genocide, then I think they need to seriously reevaluate their game plan.

  12. FF, ATMs and voting machines are two completely different things two completely different things, just like the War on Terrorism and the War in iraq are two completely seperate things. your comparing apples and oranges.

    BTW, Worf never once mentioned ATM's, nice try though :D

  13. FF -- please google "Diebold Hack Test" or check Brad Blog for detailed reports on how they failed the hack test.

    By the way, I also read your essay and admire your idealogical consistency. But in general, from reading your other writings, it seems you have a utopian idea of your party - it all sounds good on paper. And you are committed to "group-think" and labeling all liberals as one way, all conservatives another way. Your idea of "liberal" is alien to me.

    Tell me, what is your background and what kind of childhood did you have? Was there divorce or any tragedy in your family? Believe it or not, we all have an agenda based on our wounds. And don't tell me it's too feeling-oriented or "traitorous or mushy" to want to know the psychological makeup of others -- it EXPLAINS MOTIVATION. And with knowledge of "the other" solutions can be reached. Shouldn't we embrace our differences rather than exploit them --and take the best from each other so we can heal the rift in America right now?

    My theory is Math vs. Art: Artists are liberals, economists are conservatives -- but we need both.

  14. Anonymous12:38 PM

    Oh boy, here come the grassy knoll people again.They just cant admit that the majority of americans could care less what they think.

  15. FF, i find it curious that you are always so vehemently against proposed solutions to eliminate posssible corruption or inpropriety and are always so quick to dismiss solutions or scandals that do not fit your postition, logic and belief system. when the debate starts you quickly start assigning preconceived labels views and beliefs to your opponents without even taking the time to look at what they really have to say. you wouldnt know me if you bumped into me on the street and yet you CLAIM to know my all beliefs and views on a wide variety of topics despite multiple post of mine that are in direct conflict to what you CLAIN I believe in, As lydia said you exhibit groupthink and are blindly loyal to the Bush administration.

    I also find it curious that you choose to twist what people say, turn the debate to semantics and when someone else makes a point that counters your argument or logic, you frequently start with the insults or spewing what you feel this person's beliefs are and what you feel ALL liberals stand for. debate is one thing but I think you are here to dance around the real debate by spewing sterotypes and partisan rhetoric.

  16. Anonymous12:57 PM

    I love this line:

    If my bank can use technology to find every stinking penny and every dollar

    Then by corollary
    Why not put the IRS incharge of vote counting ?

  17. in other words, I think your here to deceive people and throw a wrench in true debate.

  18. Anonymous12:59 PM

    Or FF you could google Alaska and Diebold and see that they are suing to get info from Diebold to see if the machines in alaska were hacked in the last elections.

    As an aside both Diebold and ESS are in the hands of two brothers who are big time GOP contributors and both fight vigoruosly to keep any of the operating info from state election officials who are checking the acuracy of the state and federal elections in their states.

  19. Anonymous1:20 PM

    Also another comment about how proper repugs run elections, the election that selected the current majotrity party leader in the house of representatives had MORE BALLETS THAN MEMBERS on the first ballot and these guys are ALL REPUBLICANS, and supposed to be honest enough to represent the people of their districts. When they control the canidates and all the ballots THEY CAN'T EVEN GET THAT STRAIGHT. They will even cheat on each other.

  20. Like Worf said it couldnt be that hard to design a secure system with fail safes and checks and balances like a paper trail etc..

    I just dont understand how anyone would be against undertaking countermeasures to insure the integrity and honesty of the process unless they had some sort of vested interest, or the corruption claim has merit.

    The repugs are always against checks and balances and improvement and insuring integrity and if they are truly on the level i cant understand why?

  21. Ms. Cornell, thank you for reading my essay, The World Is At War. Will We Survive? I respect you as a worthy opponent as well. I first admired you when you admitted to an error over at BradBlog. I had never seen a Liberal do that.

    I came to your site when you "invited" me by quoting me in one of your posts. I also admire your willingness to listen to opposing points of view; you are not afraid of the truth. This makes your blog very interesting; echo chambers are painfully boring.

    Having said that, don't expect me to cut you any slack. Bwahahaha.

    Similarly I don't recognize the racist, ignorant, Christian-right, war-monger, heartless, nazi chimera of a Republican which Liberals invent in attempting to shout down Conservative ideas. I consider myself to be just a typical Republican on just about every issue. If you really want to understand how Republicans think, and not just parrot some gratuitous Democrat talking point, I’m the real deal.

    No doubt you are doing research for your book, but I'll be your Huckleberry. In answer to your inquiry, I came from a loving intact family and I love my folks. Growing up in the Vietnam era, my entire family on both sides was Democrat; however, I didn't think much about Republican v. Democrat politics until grad school. The Vietnam War ended when I was a senior in ROTC in college, so I served in the Reserves in peacetime. I don’t remember your sitcom, but I’m sure it was very good.

    I never bought into the America-hatred and hippie crap that my two older sisters did. One joined a disgustingly filthy commune took LSD, smoked pot, free love...the whole scene. She died recently as a young woman with ovarian cancer and I often wonder what role that lifestyle played in her demise. My older sisters did not get along with my parents.

    A life changing moment came when as a Freshman in college, I was making good grades, but miserable and blaming my personal problems on my parents and others who had actually sacrificed and done so much for me. I eventually became ashamed of my lack of gratitude and figured that this was not a healthy habit so I decided to stop. It wasn't an easy habit to break, so I started keeping a diary of my objectives and beliefs. I would refer to this whenever I started back into the blame game.

    My mantra became "individual responsibility" because I discovered the hard way what an empowering and life affirming attitude this is. It wasn't until graduate school that a room-mate and I discussed politics and religion well into the night and I realized that this concept of individual responsibility and embrace of the free enterprise system represented the fundamental difference between Republicans and Democrats. I have been a life-long Republican ever since, as has my wife of 35 years and her entire family. A recurring theme with me is the importance of freedom in our lives, hence my nick.

    As a military brat, I grew up in many places but spent much time in the south. As a kid, I witnessed racism first hand and was appalled by the “Men-Women-Colored” restrooms and drinking fountains; I remember my little black friend and the shopkeeper who threw us out of his hardware store, the schoolyard bullies who called me a n*ger-lover. I also was deeply disturbed upon learning the horror of the Holocaust by watching the Eichmann trial on TV. So Democrats can call me a bigot all they want; it doesn’t faze me because I know in my heart what real racism is and I despise it with every fiber of my being. If you want to see some genuine racism and you have a strong stomach, you can visit this repulsive holocaust-denying blog: Cytations (Try to figure out what team these maggots are on. Hint: It’s not mine.)

    My blog personality is fairly different from how I am in person. I am fairly shy and rarely discuss politics or religion with anyone I don't know intimately and dislike offending anyone. So blogging is my outlet to express my inner remove the mask which everyone must wear to get along with family and work associates. I enjoy using poignant insults, satire, and humor of every sort which I might refrain from using in polite company. I love debating and relish a challenging fight (I usually win at least in my own mind). I realize that sweeping generalizations are necessarily false because not everyone in a particular group is always anything. Regardless I use this technique to force my opponents to either defend or denounce the outrageous actions of members of their group who share their values. I always try to understand my opponents and their motivations and values. As you can probably tell I put a lot of time into making my posts interesting and accurate, because I believe this is part of a permanent record which is probably more important than most of us realize; these words can be read by anyone in the world for a very long time.

    In my work with computers, I am an application developer; a problem-solver who takes enormously complex problems and solves them with an elegantly simple solution. So I approach many things in life the same way. I have little patience for nuance and feeling-driven behavior. I believe in truth as an absolute; two people may have different perceptions of it, but they can’t both be right. I will try to reduce an argument from the obscure blizzard of facts to its essence, because when someone understands that a certain belief is not consistent with his core values, he will eventually reject it.

    BTW, I don’t disagree in general with your math-v-art comparison of Conservative-v-Liberal thinking, but how do you explain the phenomenon that many analytical folks have an aptitude for music? Could it be that some folks can use both sides of their brains?

    In real life, I am the peacemaker who reconciles feuding folks. I despise gossip, lies and hypocrisy. If you can prove that something I said was false, I will admit it. I hate true intolerance which I would define as disliking someone for who they are, over which they have no control. But I don't pull punches when I am opposed to what someone does or says or believes. I won’t be intimidated when someone pointlessly calls me naughty names. I routinely defend weaker folks from stronger folks; I don't tolerate bullies. I also brush my teeth regularly and wear clean underwear (usually).

    If you enjoyed my last essay, here are a couple others of which I am particularly proud. It's only fair, since I plan to read your book very closely!

    Conservative v. Liberal World Views


  22. Freedom Fan, i'm curious as to what type of conservative you would categorize yourself as, in the past republicans were always known as the fiscally conservative party and since Bush 43, i think this has changed, i just cant see the fiscally conservative republicans being all that happy with Bush's policies and wondered were you would fall on that continum?

  23. ...the election that selected the current majotrity party leader in the house of representatives had MORE BALLETS THAN MEMBERS on the first ballots...

    debate is one thing but I think you are here to dance around the real debate

    Mike, it would appear that it is Clif who is the expert on dancing here...

    /sorry, I suppose that proves your point or something, but it was just too good to pass up

  24. Freedom Fan, i actually agree with most of what you say in your current essay, it is pretty well written, there are a few things i dont quite agree on and/or would like to here your opinion on, i'll post my comments later tonight.

  25. This is an outrage! I for one will not be fooled again by ballet fraud!

    (As if any more proof was needed. Or any proof at all for that matter.)

  26. Anonymous3:56 PM

    Wow,its now the battle of the pocket protector boys.

  27. Worfeus,

    Thanks. I am a business application developer who uses VBA, MS Office products, SQL Server and links to enterprise data residing primarily in Oracle and similar databases. I have done similar work for about 25 years. However, I am not a computer scientist and certainly no expert on the lowest levels of chip design, nor assembly, nor C, etc.

    You're correct that putting a worm in a piece of software probably would be easy to do...if there were no built in safeguards. If you are claiming that it is impossible to design and monitor a voting system for security, then we must disagree.

    I am also a political realist who understands that there are news reporters, bloggers, and politicans who go to work every day trying to dig up dirt on their political opponents. Most are paid a lot of money to do this. Sometimes they find something, but usually it's bogus tripe comprised of fear-mongering and conspiracy theories. Why aren't these folks interested in your story? Don't you think they would come to your door, follow you around, pay you lots of bread, or at least treat you to a decadent dinner if there was a story here? Brad has been running with this fairy tale for quite a while and no one seems to be interested. Why?

    There is little doubt in my mind that the Democrats as well as Republicans had someone with your security expertise examining every crevice of the voting machine project. Before I start believing yet another bogus conspiracy theory, isn't it fair for you to supply the name of the high-ranking Democrat who was responsible for monitoring this project? Wouldn't this represent an example of massive incompetence on his part? Shouldn't he be fired?

    Also as an erstwhile computer auditor, I know someone doesn't have to know anything about a computer to analyze its internal controls and perform statistical tests to determine if it is providing accurate results. Didn't this project have an independent auditor? Who was it? Shouldn't they be sued?

    Furthermore, if either party attempted such a thing, wouldn't this be so serious as to assure the demise of the entire party? This would be far bigger than Watergate. That party would have its credibility so undermined that it would never dare to field another candidate. It would assure that the party was permanently dead.

    Plus wouldn't it look kinda fishy that one party was always winning elections? Call me clairvoyant, but I have this suspicion that y'all will lose all interest in this story once a Democrat gets into office. You probably will not even remember this story, lest you feel a twinge of embarrassment for running with it without an iota proof.

    Using common sense does not require a masters in computer science. If someone makes an accusation, it's not up to me to disprove it; the burden is on the accuser to prove it. So far ya got bupkis.

    I'm also not much interested in hearing about how Dubya planned the WTC attack so he could be re-elected, or how the Republicans will bring back the draft, or how the energy industry is conspiring every time the price of gas goes up, or learning the whereabouts of the Lock Ness monster, etc.

  28. ...Anyway I do understand, and share what I believe are core conservative principles with many of you, perhaps more than you know.

    Thanks for that Worfeus. Conservative principles just seem like natural laws to me. They just make sense. Whose world view is inherently more credible, one with consistent principles or one based on ever-changing emotion and short-run band-aid solutions to social problems? I think most people will become conservative if they drop the emotional baggage, guilt, whatever, and think it through.

    Mike I believe asked me about the Republicans running up the deficit. Yeah, I'm appalled at that but the Democrats are still screaming that it still isn't enough (and never will be). So they have zero credibility on fiscal issues as well; they just have different spending priorities. It will take another third party candidate like Ross Perot to ever focus attention on this subject again.

  29. Kirk12

    It's okay to be paranoid...if they're really out to get ya.

  30. Anonymous8:20 PM

    HUh Huh Huh

    little worefus frog cometh here and I will devour you...

    Your crossed ways will not longer be dark trouble to the FORCE

    huh huh huh

    golbbe gobble gobble slurppppp...

  31. Anonymous9:17 PM

    Freedom Fan; some questions, I have. These are the first and I'll post more later. I have read your post, and these questions occurred to me.

    Unlike Libertarians, Conservatives also believe that providing a social safety net is an important function of government.

    What is your view on the minimum wage, and required overtime laws?
    Social security Insurance?(the true name of the program)

    Government should guarantee a minimum level of subsistence for all its citizens.

    Does this include medical care?
    How do you view medicade and medicare?

    However, the state of being poor or disadvantaged should be viewed as a result of temporary circumstances. Each person, regardless of current social status or background or temporary setbacks, has the potential to become a productive, happy, fulfilled member of society, and is capable of achieving success.

    No disagreement at all.

    It is government’s function to ensure equality of opportunity not attempt to achieve equality of results.

    Accepted but, does the equality of opportunity include aid in education to bring people who have potential out of economic circumstances that are not of their own making? I had no say what so ever in the economic status of my parents.

  32. ...they would have to know that such tactics out here in the boonies will land them face down on a gurney while a nurse pulls rocksalt out of their ass.

    Heh..heh..heh (channelling Eddie Murphy) I like that. Too bad Cheney didn't just pack rock salt...

    Hey looks like you have an "admirer". Congratulations.

  33. What is your view on the minimum wage, and required overtime laws? Social security Insurance?(the true name of the program)

    I start with the premise that freedom is of paramount importance in a society. Since freedom allows each individual to realize his full human potential, there must be a very, very compelling reason before government is allowed to interfere with freedom of any sort. I am disturbed that the historical trend is to accept more and more intrusion into our lives, reduce our choices, and ultimately destroy liberty.

    Private industry almost always does a better job of providing goods and services because it has competition and offers its customers choices. Government solutions should only be provided for certain narrow functions like national defense.

    Minimum wage laws increase joblessness by forcing employers to pay new entrants, into the job market, a rate of pay which is artificially high relative to their market worth. It also increases general price levels introducing inflationary pressure into the economy.

    This is easy to demonstrate by asking: What should the “maximum” minimum wage be? $10/hr? $20? $200? Why hesitate to force employers to offer every worker $100,000 salaries? You can immediately imagine the market distortions which would result; the economic damage created by the minimum wage is directly correlated to the level you choose. Basically we tolerate a certain amount of damage in order to allow politicians to buy votes; the resulting unemployed folks are then subsidized by food stamps and welfare.

    Here's another way of testing whether setting a minimum wage makes sense economically: What percentage of workers make minimum wage? It's pretty small, so why would an employer pay someone more than the government forces him to pay? The reason is not altruism; the reason is competition. Different skills are worth more to the employer, based upon supply and demand.

    The lesson? If someone wants to make more money, then he needs to acquire the skills that are most in demand by employers, or do the work that others don’t want to do, or start a business which capitalizes on his unique capabilities and knowledge. Once again a person is happiest when he accepts personal responsibility and rejects government "help". Does anyone really want to accept minimum anything?

    As for Social Security, to be fair it should be uniform for all workers, both government and non-government. Also it should be voluntary if possible. At a minimum, individuals should be given control over their contributions to manage like we can currently manage our own Individual Retirement Accounts. This free ride that government gets needs to stop; they use our money for our entire lifetimes and then give us back less (in current dollar terms) than we have contributed. It’s a raw deal; few folks ever even stop to think about it in those terms.

  34. And lastly..... if my wife gets pregnant in 2006 but we don't deliver until 2007 can I still get the tax write off for '06?

    Funny. You already know the profile reader you.

    Yeah abortion is a tough subject. I honestly think Roe v Wade was a pretty good compromise between the mother's rights and the baby's. I doubt that any court will ever dare to overturn it. However, subsequent interpretations expanded the mother's rights to allow termination of a viable baby in the third trimester for just about any reason; this is unacceptable.

    My concern is that the decision appears to allow activist judges to do whatever they please with impugnity, ignoring the Constitution, and the will expressed by the voters through the legislative process. This is a dangerous precedent and makes me nervous about the future of our free nation. My only consolation is that this is an exception; a situation in which legislators were too timid to act, and the court filled the void.

  35. Anonymous10:46 PM

    Was the free enterprise that existed pre-great depression, the style of private industry that you propose?

    Minimum wage laws increase joblessness by forcing employers to pay new entrants, into the job market, a rate of pay which is artificially high relative to their market worth.

    $5.15/hr is high? Try living on it.

  36. Anonymous11:03 PM

    The lesson? If someone wants to make more money, then he needs to acquire the skills that are most in demand by employers, or do the work that others don’t want to do, or start a business which capitalizes on his unique capabilities and knowledge.

    Unless those jobs are being outsourced overseas to below minimum wage. Also the minimum wage sets a standard that one should be able to live off of, and the high school argument is gone with the large amount of illegal immigrants working where the high school's used to. Try most Mickey-D's here and it is not high school, also roofers, construction laborers. The minimum wage is being undermined by the surge of illegal immigrants working with out papers. I live not to far from Churchill Downs where they run the Kentucky Derby and the back side has almost entirely been outsourced in place with illegals. Same as the cleaning company that got caught working in Wal-marts. We will disagree because, I believe, from a societal standpoint underpaying causes way many more problems than the increased profits justify. Just as outsourcing jobs removes income from middle and lower wage Americans to the detriment of the economy, hiring Illegal workers also has the same effect, by removing the source for the jobs.

  37. Anonymous11:11 PM

    Another fact to look at Worfeus, is exit polls, where the UN uses a statistic of, over 5% varience between the vote and the pool as evidence of fraud, in some Ohio counties in 2004 the varience was 11%.

  38. Anonymous11:21 PM

    Freedom Fan: That’s why Conservatives honor patriots with the nobility and compassion to lay down their very lives when necessary to defend the right of their friends to enjoy freedom and safety.

    How? By actually cutting the budget the VA uses, not in total but in dollar amount per veteran, in other words they are spending less for each veteran they care for this year than last.

  39. Anonymous11:23 PM

    Worfeus this was brought to my attention in relationship to the ports sale, it is funny

  40. Anonymous11:25 PM

    I can hear one response Those UN liberals blah blah blah ............... don't believe anything those communists ever say. (LOL)

  41. Anonymous11:53 PM

    Worfeus good reading but sit down you'll not believe they still say things like this with a straight face

  42. Anonymous11:57 PM

    What rigged elections lead to;

    What It Means To Be A Republican

    by Larry Beinhart

    The vice president shoots you in the heart and in the face. Then you apologize for all the trouble it’s caused him. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    Despite almost hysterical warnings the president stays asleep at the wheel. He does nothing about terrorism and 9/11 happens. He responds by running away to Nebraska. Three days later he makes a supposedly impromptu speech with a bull horn on the rubble of the World Trade Center. He is universally cheered as a hero. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    The president puts together false claims to go to war with the wrong country. His party universally supports him. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    The administration mismanages the war in Iraq so that it creates chaos, a breeding ground for terrorists and political opportunities for Islamic fundamentalists. Along the way, the reasons for going to war are exposed as false. The president runs on national security as his main issue. He is re-elected. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    The president cheerfully gives away the surplus to the richest people in the country. Then he runs up record debts, just to throw more money their way. He claims it has helped America’s economy. People act like they believe him. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    The administration continues it’s magnificent tradition of going to sleep when it is warned of disaster. It does nothing when Katrina is coming. It continues its record of doing nothing when disaster arrives. As New Orleans was lost, just as when the World Trade Center was lost, the president got as far away as possible. But he can’t be blamed for what nature did. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    The president orders wiretaps without warrants, a straightforward violation of the constitution. When the Attorney General is called to testify, the head of the Judiciary Committee insists that his testimony not be under oath. The head of the intelligence committee suggests that the law be changed, now, to make it legal after the fact. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    Alberto Gonzales helped come up with the program that rejected the Geneva Conventions, that permits torture, that says that the president is above the law and that “I was only following orders” should be a defense against a charge of war crimes. Ah, if only the Nazi war criminals who were hung at Nuremberg had Gonzales there to defend them. The president nominates Gonzales to be his new Attorney General. He is confirmed with little debate and no outrage. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    This needs to be understood.

    What it implies is that Republicans can’t be dealt with as if reason and facts will sway them. Because it won't. It’s hard for reality-based people, regular Democrats and Liberals, to understand that.

    What it lets us know is that reality-based people -- Democrats, Liberals, real Conservatives, old-fashioned Republicans and non-profit Christians -- have to take more vigorous and rigorous stands. Or reality and real American values and the American landscape will disappear, not just temporarily, but forever.

  43. Anonymous11:58 PM

    In December 2005, Diebold's CEO Wally O'Dell left the company following reports that the company was facing securities fraud litigation surrounding charges of insider trading. And we were supposed to trust him?

  44. Anonymous12:12 AM

    A good story about Diebold and Election Systems and Software another electronic voting machine company broiled in questionable elections

    Lydia you should add some info about ES&S since diebold si not the only ones doing this.

  45. Anonymous12:15 AM

    Worfeus I thought I'd never tell anyone to go to this web site and rejoice but stranger things are happening

    The fools are even bringing the left and right together, who'd a thunk?

  46. Anonymous12:32 AM

    Lynn Landes is a gutsy American woman following the example of the sufragettes, who fought battles for basic voting civil rights that seemed unwinnable. That is, until they won.

    Landes is fighting the suit in the United States Supreme Court as a citizen, by herself, with no lawyer (called a Pro Se case). In her courage, she is resuscitating the spirit of historic independent actions by the citizenry.

    They said it better,

    maybe there is hope.

  47. Anonymous12:43 AM

    You couldn't make this up, a convicted felon who's involved in the software of Diebold, ES&S as well as others, seems Abrarmoff wasn't the only felon with republican ties. This came out of a website story but this part needed to be posted,

    worfeus let me know is he really able to do things that we wouldn't want done please.

    Who's Jeffrey Dean?

    Jeffrey Dean was convicted of 23 felony counts involving sophisticated computer fraud. He spent four years in prison (1991-1995). While he was in prison, his wife obtained absentee ballot processing contracts with King County, Wash. A group of investors from Omaha purchased his brother's business shortly before Jeff Dean got out of prison and he began working at his brother's mail processing plant from prison while on work release.

    Upon release from prison, Jeff Dean developed the programs that handle mail sorting and counting for PSI Group, as well as the ballot mail processing programs.

    Regarding computer programming, Dean testified: "I'm proficient in some archaic languages and proficient in visual basic. I have a dangerous working knowledge of postscript."

    For those who are enthused about mail-in voting: Jeffrey Dean created both the ballot sorting and mailing software and the authentication software used by ballot processor PSI Group and Diebold Election Systems. He also reportedly installed the mail-handling software in Las Vegas, Nev. (Sequoia Voting Systems), Maricopa County, Ariz. (ES&S), and at one point it was running in Snohomish County, Wash. as well. Jeffrey Dean's mail-in voting software has never been certified or examined at all, and it is not required to be certified.

  48. Anonymous12:43 AM

    This website is a must to understand the depth of the electronic voting scandal problem,

    Many stories from many states.

  49. Anonymous12:46 AM

    More on Mr. Dean;(not John Dean Nixons lawyer, but there are connections to watergate figures just the same)

    worth reading

  50. Anonymous12:50 AM

    The republicans in Alaska fighting the democrats from investigating the 2004 vote;

    Florida, Ohio, California, Washington, Alaska, the list keeps getting longer, will we make all 50 before 2008?

  51. Anonymous1:01 AM

    "When the State of Maryland hired a computer security firm to test its new machines, these paid hackers had little trouble casting multiple votes and taking over the machines' vote-recording mechanisms. The Maryland study shows convincingly that more security is needed for electronic voting, starting with voter-verified paper trails."

    When Maryland decided to buy 16,000 AccuVote-TS voting machines, there was considerable opposition. Critics charged that the new touch-screen machines, which do not create a paper record of votes cast, were vulnerable to vote theft. The state commissioned a staged attack on the machines, in which computer-security experts would try to foil the safeguards and interfere with an election.

    They were disturbingly successful. It was an "easy matter," they reported, to reprogram the access cards used by voters and vote multiple times. They were able to attach a keyboard to a voting terminal and change its vote count. And by exploiting a software flaw and using a modem, they were able to change votes from a remote location.

    Critics of new voting technology are often accused of being alarmist, but this state-sponsored study contains vulnerabilities that seem almost too bad to be true. Maryland's 16,000 machines all have identical locks on two sensitive mechanisms, which can be opened by any one of 32,000 keys. The security team had no trouble making duplicates of the keys at local hardware stores, although that proved unnecessary since one team member picked the lock in "approximately 10 seconds."

    Diebold, the machines' manufacturer, rushed to issue a self-congratulatory press release with the headline "Maryland Security Study Validates Diebold Election Systems Equipment for March Primary." The study's authors were shocked to see their findings spun so positively. Their report said that if flaws they identified were fixed, the machines could be used in Maryland's March 2 primary. But in the long run, they said, an extensive overhaul of the machines and at least a limited paper trail are necessary.

    The Maryland study confirms concerns about electronic voting that are rapidly accumulating from actual elections. In Boone County, Ind., last fall, in a particularly colorful example of unreliability, an electronic system initially recorded more than 144,000 votes in an election with fewer than 19,000 registered voters, County Clerk Lisa Garofolo said. Given the growing body of evidence, it is clear that electronic voting machines cannot be trusted until more safeguards are in place.

    Thus these machines can be hacked FF

    eNuff said

  52. Anonymous1:35 AM

    Freedom fan the free market seem to be slipping along with working class wages.

    Fastest-growing Jobs Losing Real Value
    by Brendan Coyne

    Feb. 20 – Recent statistics show that the fastest-growing jobs in the US also happen to be those with the lowest compensation. At the same time, the minimum wage is, in real dollar terms, the lowest it has been since its enactment in 1947.

    The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) last month reported that the official unemployment rate had fallen to 4.7 percent.

    Buried in the rosy economic scenario portrayed by recentBLS reports is the fact that few jobs in the fastest-growing categories pay well. According to the BLS January jobs report, food-service and service-provider jobs grew a combined 69,000 in January.

    The report was followed this month by the BLS annual Occupational Outlook Handbook, which projects continued rapid growth in demand for home-healthcare workers, medical assistants and personal-care aides, all service-related jobs that generally pay little more than the minimum wage.

    Though service-related employment categories do include managerial and non-supervisory positions that are better compensated, the majority of such jobs pay little more -- and in some cases, such as restaurant workers, less -- than the minimum wage, which is now less than a third of the average hourly wage, according to an analysis released by the Economic Policy Institute Friday.

    Of the 30 fastest-growing occupations, six do not require higher education and another eight demand just an associate’s degree.

    According to the EPI, which advocates for a higher wage floor, the minimum wage has been consistently below 40 percent of the average hourly wage for 23 years and has been falling steadily since 1998, the last time it came near the 40 percent mark. Last month, the average hourly wage was $16.41, more than three times the federal minimum.

  53. Anonymous1:41 AM

    And for some humor,

    Some of these are funny, but it takes a bit to load

  54. Anonymous3:08 AM

    This doesn't leave me with a warm or fuzzy feeling

    another warm and fuzzy story


    Say it ain't so, didn't somebody all ready try this?

    together these links could produce a scary senero for a new action movie but they are happening for real here in the good ole USA.

  55. Anonymous5:18 AM

    I"ve just finished doopping the remains of the little frog on in an open white receptacle when an idea struck....

    lets just nationalize those docks in the name of national security when we need to, that way we will keep the docks and the money --------------------next time a crissis occurs ..

  56. What it implies is that Republicans can’t be dealt with as if reason and facts will sway them. Because it won't. It’s hard for reality-based people, regular Democrats and Liberals, to understand that.

    Clif, I am shocked, shocked to find you using sweeping generalizations!

    Here's another essay for you Clif: Conservatism v. Liberalism: A Riddle and Hope for the New Year

    (Warning: Do Not Read If You Are Terrified By Sweeping Generalizations)

    How do two intelligent people study the same facts and arrive at opposite conclusions?
    I submit that each person begins with a set of core values which comprise a particular world view. Therefore my conclusion may differ from yours because we each start with, and build upon, a different premise. Politically, Conservatives and Liberals have polar opposite world views and each must subjectively distort facts to fit into that world view. Both world views cannot be correct, although some combination may be possible. How are Conservative and Liberal world views different?

    -Freedom Fan

  57. Anonymous8:25 AM

    Clif, your 11:57PM post just pretty much summed up my last 6 weeks of posting.

    Clif said "What rigged elections lead to;

    What It Means To Be A Republican

    by Larry Beinhart

    The vice president shoots you in the heart and in the face. Then you apologize for all the trouble it’s caused him. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    Despite almost hysterical warnings the president stays asleep at the wheel. He does nothing about terrorism and 9/11 happens. He responds by running away to Nebraska. Three days later he makes a supposedly impromptu speech with a bull horn on the rubble of the World Trade Center. He is universally cheered as a hero. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    The president puts together false claims to go to war with the wrong country. His party universally supports him. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    The administration mismanages the war in Iraq so that it creates chaos, a breeding ground for terrorists and political opportunities for Islamic fundamentalists. Along the way, the reasons for going to war are exposed as false. The president runs on national security as his main issue. He is re-elected. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    The president cheerfully gives away the surplus to the richest people in the country. Then he runs up record debts, just to throw more money their way. He claims it has helped America’s economy. People act like they believe him. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    The administration continues it’s magnificent tradition of going to sleep when it is warned of disaster. It does nothing when Katrina is coming. It continues its record of doing nothing when disaster arrives. As New Orleans was lost, just as when the World Trade Center was lost, the president got as far away as possible. But he can’t be blamed for what nature did. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    The president orders wiretaps without warrants, a straightforward violation of the constitution. When the Attorney General is called to testify, the head of the Judiciary Committee insists that his testimony not be under oath. The head of the intelligence committee suggests that the law be changed, now, to make it legal after the fact. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    Alberto Gonzales helped come up with the program that rejected the Geneva Conventions, that permits torture, that says that the president is above the law and that “I was only following orders” should be a defense against a charge of war crimes. Ah, if only the Nazi war criminals who were hung at Nuremberg had Gonzales there to defend them. The president nominates Gonzales to be his new Attorney General. He is confirmed with little debate and no outrage. That’s what it means to be a Republican.

    This needs to be understood.

    What it implies is that Republicans can’t be dealt with as if reason and facts will sway them. Because it won't. It’s hard for reality-based people, regular Democrats and Liberals, to understand that.

    What it lets us know is that reality-based people -- Democrats, Liberals, real Conservatives, old-fashioned Republicans and non-profit Christians -- have to take more vigorous and rigorous stands. Or reality and real American values and the American landscape will disappear, not just temporarily, but forever.

    11:57 PM


  58. Worfeus said "You can pull a lot on a lot of people, but when you've made your shtick on protecting America from Muslim Arab terrorists, and then try to sell control over our most sensitive homeland defense locations to the same Muslim Arab nation that financed the Sept 11 attacks, you're gonna loose most people.

    Guaranteed. "

    It looks like your right people are finally standing up and seeing how ridiculous what these guys are trying to do really is. I dont know how any one could support the port fiasco or using voting machines that could be compromised, even if they are on the level unless they have some kind of vested interest or there truly was corruption and/or foul play involved, wouldnt you want to insure integrity and want people to have trust and confidence in the process. But I guess thats what happens when you feel your omnipotent you can do what ever you want and dont have to account to anyone. I'm just glad the governors arent playing dead and are fighting this lunacy.

  59. FF -- I read with great interest your bio here, but have to give it more attention later. Sorry I'm out of commission today, but will respond tomorrow night. Thank you.

    Hey EVERYONE -- I have a tidbit of news that I am posting at top of blog on the UAE port deal.

  60. Freedom Fan, I too read your bio with great interest, after reading it I see you in different light and have to say I have gained some respect for you. Like Worfeus, I assumed you were around 28-35 years old, and thought you were a blindly loyal schill to the republican party that was here with bad intentions. I am always somewhat disturbed by people who label others and make broad sterotypical generalizations about others without really knowing them, and are blindly loyal to all their partys political principles and try to preach or convert others. that being said i'll try to take you at your word that you truly believe in ALL these principles you advocate and that your broad generalizations are merely to elicit debate. I do have to say I find it questionable to believe in all the principles advocated by either liberals or conservatives. Like Worfeus I have never registered as a Democrat and although my views are primarily liberal, not all fall along the liberal part of the spectrum, in fact I think you might be surprised by some of them.

    I will post some of my views on some of the issues discussed in the last day or two tonight, when I have more time, as well as my opinion of your article, I look forward to your opinions on them.

  61. Anonymous10:11 AM

    Huh Huh Huh ,

    EXxxxxxxcccccCELLENT !!!

    I await with great AAAAnnnticipation for these and more pearls of wisdom ..
    you are all my kind of svum;)

    Huh Huh Huh ,

  62. Anonymous10:37 AM

    by Larry Beinhart

    What it implies is that Republicans can’t be dealt with as if reason and facts will sway them. Because it won't. It’s hard for reality-based people, regular Democrats and Liberals, to understand that.Larry Bienhart

    Clif, I am shocked, shocked to find you using sweeping generalizations!

    BY Larry Bienhart, his comment I post a whole article do not cherry pick.

  63. Hey Worf,

    Congratulations, apparently you have acquired a stalker. They're kinda like dust mites in that they are capable of absolutely no cognitive activity and are almost impossible to rid oneself of. No doubt ol' drooling fatso and anonypuss are one in the same. On the bright side, at least you didn't pick up "crabs".

  64. AP Updated: 1:09 p.m. ET Feb. 21, 2006
    WASHINGTON - Senate Republican Leader Bill Frist called Tuesday for the Bush administration to stop a deal permitting a United Arab Emirates company to take over six major U.S. seaports, upping the ante on a fight that several congressmen, governors and mayors are waging with the White House.

    “The decision to finalize this deal should be put on hold until the administration conducts a more extensive review of this matter,” said Frist. “If the administration cannot delay this process, I plan on introducing legislation to ensure that the deal is placed on hold until this decision gets a more thorough review.”

  65. Worfeus said "Remember the old line, avoid the very appearence of evil? "


  66. Anonymous11:00 AM

    This a real Army regulation, AR 210-35, titled Civilian Imate Labor Program,.... wasn't this tried before?

    It is dated 14 Janurary 2005, can you think of a reason the Army might need civilian criminal imates to work for them?

    BTW violant criminals, drug criminals, organised crime inmates, sex offenders. escape risks, famous prisoners, need not apply( it's in the regulation)

    This might go along with the detention camps that Halliburton has been contracted to build.

  67. Anonymous11:19 AM

    Mike as an aside what do you ride, I have a 2003 dresser I ride and a 2001 1200 sporster I'm building into a small chopper, I also have a 1976 Triumph Tiger I bought to have, I rode a 1979 Triumph Bonnieville 750 Special for years, wish I'd never sold it.

  68. Clif, I just bought a ZX12 Ninja this fall, just finished breaking it in (awesome bike, I love it), I also have several dirt bikes, Ktm 440, Can Am 200 and KX 125, and I really like the Honda VTX 1800 cruiser and the new Triumph with that monster 2300cc motor, maybe i'll get one of those in the next 3-5 years after I get a new car.

  69. I always wished I had been a little older to experience those 2 stroke triples, i love 2 strokes, my ZX 12 is an animal, 90 in 1st gear with 6 gears and it can pull the wheel up in at over 100 mph, but its not a 2 stroke.

  70. Anonymous11:53 AM

    I loved the limeys but had to work on them alot. My harley just goes and goes, except for last may when bambi and I had a disagreement over a small piece of I-65, bike was almost totaled but I had full coverage, I walked away with a few scratches, my mother says my guardian angel works overtime I'm starting to believe her.

  71. Worfeus said "The sale includes giving a UAE owned firm control over military contracts for shipping weapons and military equipment out of 2 ports in Texas."

    Great now the UAE firm is supervising weapon shipments, it does get better and better, what could these guys be thinking??

    Dumb and Dumber is all I can say.

  72. At least most of the governors are calling a spade a spade and saying what a dumb idea this is and resisting, even Bill Frist is against this idea.

  73. Anonymous1:04 PM

    Bush is threating to veto the bill blocking the port deal, hey congress and the white house finally disagree on something, maybe congress will find the testicular fortitude to begin actual oversite.

  74. Anonymous1:14 PM

    At least some people can have a sence of humor about the port deal....

  75. Anonymous1:28 PM

    I was going to offer my Jethro Tull collection buy realised that I still like jethro, for songs like "too old to Rock and roll and too young to die."

  76. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  77. Worfeus said "President Bush responded to Congress today by declaring he will VETO ANY LEGISLATION to BLOCK HIS SALE OF OUR PORTS TO THE UAE."

    HIS SALE HUH???? Lord Bush may as well have said HIS PORTS as well, because thats exactly the way this megalomaniac thinks, He thinks this is HIS COUNTRY and everything in it is his property and all the people are his loyal subjects, its about time some one knocked this pompous dictator off his supposed throne and brought him back to reality that this is our country and he is a mere civil servant who is supposed to serve our citizens.I am so sick and tired of his haughty arrogant attitude that he's calling all the shots.

    and as far as what the UAE did or agreed to do for him, I think it has something to do with oil, like for instance if the price of oil mysteriously spikes this summer then our savior Lord Bush calls in a favor in the fall to bring the price of oil down right before the election so him and the repugs can look like heros and possibly sway the vote.

    1:52 PM

  78. It looks like a you scratch my back i'll scratch your back type of deal, we know at least some of what we are doing for the UAE, so the question appears to be what is the UAE doing for the Bush Administration.

  79. Anonymous2:15 PM

    Worfeus the goberment is preparing for the next attack.... Halliburton built intermint camps and new army regulation for civilian prisoners to work for the Army for no pay or benifits, (it is in the regulation) you can read the new(14 Janurary 2005) Army regulation called Civilian Inmate Labor Program, about how they are to use civilian "convicted?" criminals to preform work on US Army Installations at;

    Add this to Georges plan to privatise the federal goverment.

  80. Anonymous3:57 PM

    The voting fraud continues;

    While President Bush proclaims his support for democracy around the world, his Justice Department is busy stifling it here at home. The Department of Justice recently approved Georgia’s plan to force voters to show a state-issued ID that can be obtained in only 59 of the state’s 159 counties, none of which are in the six counties with the highest percentage of African Americans.

    This is especially troubling because of the apparent racist motivations of the bill’s backers. The chief sponsor of Georgia’s bill told the Justice Department that “if there are fewer black voters because of this bill, it will only be because there is less opportunity for fraud.” Even the Justice Department’s own experts believe this will disenfranchise eligible voters.

    Today, Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell (D) announced that he would veto similar legislation in his state because “it would disenfranchise some of the state’s most vulnerable residents.”

    The Department of Justice used to focus on expanding minority voting rights — now they are approving plans to restrict them. There was a time when conservatives would balk at disenfranchising voters — today it’s standard practice.

    – Sam Davis

  81. Anonymous5:19 PM

    Yes but this port security story is small to me compared to the camps built by Halliburton and the AR-210-35, I see a larger plan at work and after martial law there will be no turning back, the congress is going to stall the deal and there will be changes made, but who is questioning the new regulation and why they needed it? Having been in the situation where I had to read regulations and decide how best to impliment them I can see alot of bad out of this, even more than the torture letters of gonzolas did in the hands of the same military. Given Rumsfeld track record I have no trust with a reg like this.

    Have you read the regulation Worf? What I see is not good.

  82. Kirk said "But you can bet they're all waiting for the talking points..... I'm sure Karl Rove is working on them right now. "

    5:16 PM

    No I think Rove allready came up with their talking points just like he did when congress asked for information on the domestic spying program "thats classified, we wont talk about it." see I dont think they will even try to defend the decision, because they cant, they will just keep up with the same pompous "we're calling the shots and dont have to explain to you what we are doing" rhetoric just like they did for their illegal domestic spying propgram.

  83. Anonymous5:41 PM

    Read it, it will make your skin crawl, an Army regulation to use us civilian inmates(it does not say they have to be convicted of any crime, enemy combatents anyone, how about those who are found deminstrating in unapproved places, or those who get swept up in security sweeps and held for years?) to preform work for the army for no pay, benifits, that is in the regulation,

  84. Anonymous5:58 PM

    Ancient Rome Yes another Imperial democracy, however the more modern form used in europe in the 30's and 40's as well as the USSR from 1929 until the late 80's is probably more accurate

  85. Anonymous7:28 PM

    how they are to use civilian "convicted?" criminals to preform work

    exactley what extreme left wing dictatorships do----after they shoot everyone with high school or above education in the back of the head ....

    such criminals are made the new police force

    yes officer I had a nice watch you can take....

  86. Anonymous7:33 PM

    I remeber it welll

    as should you

  87. Anonymous7:45 PM


  88. With this UAE deal and subsequent veto threat, Bush has inexplicably committed political suicide.

    I have resigned to watch four years of hillary's elephant ankles, faux motherly smiles, transparent lies, enthusiastic support for abortion past the 4th trimester, attempts to nationalize or cripple vast portions of U.S. private enterprise, and disinterested neglect followed by panicked overreaction to the actions of our determined islamofascist foes.

    Although Conservative ideas are vastly superior, our leadership has failed us; congratulations dhimmicrats.

  89. Voltaire,

    What the hell is going on, buddy? This is simply insane.

  90. Anonymous9:05 PM

    I have to agree anybody but Billary again

  91. Anonymous9:07 PM

    No Nader or McCain,

    as an aside wonder what Karl is doing now that his threats to congress won't stop the repug's or dems from passing the bill or overriding the veto.

  92. Anonymous9:21 PM

    I'm afraid both sides would swift-boat hacket, he won't play by their rules so they'd have to bring him down before most people knew much about him, the politicos don't want any loose cannons that might mess up the game and cause them to be on the outside of the loop, sorry to be so cynical but that's the way I see it.

  93. Yeah I checked the Coulter Blog--nada. WSJ-silent. Rumsfeld goes well I'll hafta study this; first I've heard of it (unbelievable!) Hannity ripped Dubya, as did Savage, Malkin, and Al Rantel. Limbaugh gave some lame justification about making your enemy your friend...problem is sleeping with a rattlesnake is proly a more valid analogy.

    Somebody 'splain this to me; I admit bafflement.

  94. I like Frist, but admit I don't know too much about him.

  95. Okay this is my prediction (remember where you first heard it):

    Bill Richardson, Guv of N.M.

  96. Anonymous9:30 PM

    The Dubai group have interlocking monetary links with carlyl(sp) Exxon-Mobil and other groups that Bush41 and Bush 43 are beholden to. This deal is more about keeping the cosy ties that the Carlyl Group and its players then Homeland Security. Plus Sec. of Treus Snow was CEO fo CSX RR before he went to Tres. His deputy was Named Sanborn who came to CSX from the Conrail RR deal, CSX owned operating rights to ports in Brazil and elseware and sold them to Dubai Ports World, the same company trying to buy the US ports. Mr. Sanborn became a member of the board of directors, and ran the ports that CSX had sold, later this announcement was made; Dave Sanborn, has been nominated by US President George W. Bush to serve as Maritime Administrator a key transportation appointment reporting directly to Norman Mineta the Secretary of Transportation and Cabinet Member. The rest is as they say is todays news.

  97. I've never failed to pick the winner...except for Clinton...hafta admit to being blindsided on that one.

  98. Anonymous9:43 PM

    Freedom Fan didn't the swift-boating of McCain in south carolina and the fact that Cheney ran Bush's election, and search for VP before he found himself give you a clue?

  99. Anonymous9:45 PM

    Off current topic but Voting Fraud, look at this report;

  100. Clif,

    My apologies, would you mind re-stating that in a different manner?

  101. Here's an excellent take on the result of the cartoon hysteria from Victor Davis Hansen: What Will Europe Really Do?:

    There will be continued public furor over the American efforts in Iraq, but far greater secret efforts to coordinate with the U. S. — in everything from isolating the Assad regime in Syria to rethinking missile defense. For the past three years the post-colonial Europeans have wished the Americans to learn their imperial lessons by failing in Iraq. Yet it may well be that many in private will now wish us to succeed, if only in the hopes that such Middle East democracies will be less likely in the future to turn loose their mobs to burn European embassies and threaten their citizens.

  102. Anonymous10:10 PM

    The fact that George Bush's campaign had absolutely no regrets to the act of lying about John Mc Cain, record or the true status of the child he and his wife adopted. They bush machine ran phone banks accusing the child from bangledesh of actually being a half african american child Mccain secretly fathered and the adoption had been a ruse to cover the fact up.

    I wondered why, then i saw the machine run over the truth more than onve, some of the operators like Cheney who had signed on to the neo-con agenda, well Cheney made sure he was there to complete the agenda, other people who were on board Rummy, perle, wolfowitz,feith and others who signed on to the ideas of pnac, AEI. They were going after Saddam, Cheney, Wolfowitz Perle, Condi Rice saw Iraq as unfinished business and after Saddam converted to Euros his days were numbered, (read Paul O'Neils book for more) Thw WMD's were the sales pitch that joe sixpack could buy. and so they sold it. it has bothered me because anybody who disagrees is attacked, and those who are a thread get the Joe Wilson, Scott Ritter, John Kerry treatment. Karl Rove is the hatchman and now they are finally being shown for what they want. (-11 is the best thing that ever happened to then it was their Pearl Harbor or Gulf of Tonkin, and they have gone for it ever since. Today the neo-con agenda clashes with the post 9-11 world and you are confused thta Bush is not the man he plays on TV in front of screened audiances in staged events. He has to protect that which he and those with him are working toward, this is the same reason that the border of Mexico is so poorly guarded because the low wage mexican labor trumps security. Other examples exist but I'll close for now.

  103. DailyKOS horrified that they are in agreement with LittleGreenFootballs over the folly of the UAE deal.

    ...famine, pestilence, dogs and cats lying together in apparent fulfillment of Biblical predictions of Armageddon...

  104. Hillary would never win, out of the people named, I could see John McCane or Bill Richardson, I'm sure they would never consider running, but I wouldnt mind seeing Colin Powell, Robert Rubin or Paul O'Neil, also I think a strong thrird party candidate could be just what we need.

  105. Clif,

    Hadn't heard about that, but there's little doubt your team takes the prize for sleazy campaigns like when Algore somehow blamed Bush for the James Byrd dragging death, or when rangel introduced a bill to reinstate the draft and blamed it on the Republicans, or dan rather published and vigorously defended a bogus military letter to smear a sitting Republican President right before the last election.

  106. Clif, I did read Paul O'Neil's book, in fact i'm rereading it this weekend, it was a good read. I gained as lot of respect for O'neil after reading that book

  107. Anonymous10:52 PM

    It's more than just the ports, I carried this because it completes the story better.

    The dirty little secret behind the UAE port security flap
    Politicians and the media are loudly decrying the Bush administration's proposal to turn over port security to a firm owned by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) - a country with ties to terrorists. They are talking tough about national security - but almost no one is talking about what may have fueled the administration's decision to push forward with this deal: the desire to move forward Big Money's "free" trade agenda.

    How much does "free" trade have to do with this? How about a lot. The Bush administration is in the middle of a two-year push to ink a corporate-backed "free" trade accord with the UAE. At the end of 2004, in fact, it was Bush Trade Representative Robert Zoellick who proudly boasted of his trip to the UAE to begin negotiating the trade accord. Rejecting this port security deal might have set back that trade pact. Accepting the port security deal - regardless of the security consequences - likely greases the wheels for the pact. That's probably why instead of backing off the deal, President Bush - supposedly Mr. Tough on National Secuirty - took the extraordinary step of threatening to use the first veto of his entire presidency to protect the UAE's interests. Because he knows protecting those interetsts - regardless of the security implications for America - is integral to the "free" trade agenda all of his corporate supporters are demanding.

    The Inter Press Service highlights exactly what's at stake, quoting a conservative activists who admits that this is all about trade:

    "The United States' trade relationship with the UAE is the third largest in the Middle East, after Israel and Saudi Arabia. The two nations are engaged in bilateral free talks that would liberalise trade between the two countries and would, in theory at least, allow companies to own and operate businesses in both nations. 'There are legitimate security questions to be asked but it would be a mistake and really an insult to one of our leading trading partners in that region to reject this commercial transaction out of hand,' said Daniel T. Griswold, who directs the Center for Trade Policy Studies at the Cato Institute, a Washington-based libertarian think tank."

    Look, we've seen this before. Just last year, Congress approved a U.S. taxpayer-funded loan by the Bush administration to a British company to help build nuclear technology in Communist China. Despite major security concerns raised - and a legislative effort to block the loan - Congress's "free traders" (many of whom talk so tough on security) made sure the loan went through so as to preserve the U.S.-China free trade relationship that is allowing lawmakers' corporate campaign contributors export so many U.S. jobs.

    There is no better proof that our government takes its orders from corporate interests than these kinds of moves. That's what this UAE deal is all about - the mixture of the right-wing's goal of privatizing all government services (even post 9/11 port security!) with the political Establishment's desire to make sure Tom-Friedman-style "free" trade orthodoxy supersedes everything. This is where the culture of corruption meets national security policy - and, more specifically, where the unbridled corruption of on-the-take politicians are weakening America's security.

    The fact that no politicians and almost no media wants to even explore this simple fact is telling. Here we have a major U.S. security scandal with the same country we are simultaneously negotiating a free trade pact with, and no one in Washington is saying a thing. The silence tells you all you need to know about a political/media establishment that is so totally owned by Big Money interests they won't even talk about what's potentially at the heart of a burgeoning national security scandal.

  108. Anonymous10:57 PM

    Freedom Fan they weren't my team I was MAD because in 2000 I wanted McCain, eNuff said

    PS sorry to blow you theroy to hell, but I enjoyed blowing things up in the Army, old habits die hard

  109. Freedom Fan said "As for Social Security, to be fair it should be uniform for all workers, both government and non-government. Also it should be voluntary if possible. At a minimum, individuals should be given control over their contributions to manage like we can currently manage our own Individual Retirement Accounts. This free ride that government gets needs to stop; they use our money for our entire lifetimes and then give us back less (in current dollar terms) than we have contributed. It’s a raw deal; few folks ever even stop to think about it in those terms.

    10:25 PM

    Freedom Fan, I agree with most of what you said regarding Social Security, I think it should be uniform for all workers particularly government to align their interests with the rest of the nations, I think Congess should be part of social security just like everyone else, I also am against government getting a free ride with social security money. while I also agree with you that I would prefer to opt out and invest the money myself, I think the vast majority of people probably would not feel comfortable managing their own finances.

    where we differ is allowing it to be optional, I feel if this were the case the vast majority of wealthy and uppermiddle class would opt out and there would be no money to provide a basic level of substinence to the poor who have no other source of income.

    I feel a more viable option would be to have half the money go into a social security fund which would bring social security back to what it was originally intended for, not a retirement fund, but a fund to help the poor or those no longer able to work (there should also be income and net worth guidelines to collecting this money.

    I would then allow. the other half to be invested in individual retirement accounts. I would also have people's entire income be subject to the social security portion instead of just the first $87,000 like we have now. aditionally the portion eligible for the individual retirement account would be able to be withdrawn tax free upon retirement just like a Roth Ira. I think we need to get the people who are able to, to take responsibility for their own retirement and not just depend on the government.

  110. Anyone see Rumsfeld and Peter Pace trying to do a sales job on the port deal tonight on C-Span, I was waiting for them to try to sell me some swamp land in Florida, its scary the way these guys fire up the PR machine at will to promote the crooked agenda Du Jour.

  111. Anonymous11:37 PM

    Mike look at the cap on wages elegible for social security tax, the wealther have "opped" out with this cap. Do you think someone who makes 2-3 million or more feel the pinch of only taxing the first 87,000, not withstanding other sources of income for the wealthy are totally exempt like dividends, interest income, stocks profits etc

  112. Anonymous11:44 PM

    the social security reform is more about getting the money that goes in to the SS trust fund to go into investments either stocks, mutual funds, etc which mean a much larger amount of funds to be managed which means higher profits for fund managers, investment advisors, stock brokers and the banks that operate this system. All that money for the costs of the system will come out before any investment income will exist for the retiree, and what happens if another series of Enron, Tyco, Worldcom, Pan am, GM, ford losses, who makes up the difference(losses), the tax payers? Or do the managers refund the fees they charged for putting the money into a loosing system.

  113. Clif, thats what i'm saying, the wealthy SHOULD be taxed on their entire income, not just the first $87,000.

    We have a responsibility to take care of the poor, the downfall of Rome was wasting all of their resources fighting corrupt wars and not taking care of the poor. Just to clarify, when I say we need to take care of the poor, I dont mean those too lazy or unwilling to work, I mean those unable to work or better their circumstances that legitimately need help to survive.

  114. aditionally the portion eligible for the individual retirement account would be able to be withdrawn tax free upon retirement just like a Roth Ira.

    Yes, every year the maximium level of income subject to SS is raised; this is how they will finance the projected shortfall. This represents a huge progressive tax shift to wealthier folks without any corresponding benefit.

    Interesting that none of these retirement arrangements are truly "tax free" with the exception of term life insurance (which is a generally a poor investment per se).

    The traditional IRA and 401k plans are "tax deferred" whereas the tax on Roths is essentially paid at the time the contribution is made, but doesn't include future earnings.

  115. Good point FF, but what if half the amount collected for SS could truly be invested and withdrawn taxfree, sounds good to me at least, also although you are right that we are taxed before investing in A Roth Ira, i'm still a big fan of the Roth.

  116. The income cap on SS for 2006 is now up to $96,400.

    They annually raise it by a significant amount.

  117. My question is if a lower middle class Sclubb like me has my entire salary taxed for SS, do you think it would be that great a hardship for someone making 3 million plus to have their entire salary taxed as well, regardless of wether they collect or not. If people take responsibility for their own retirement and dont need to collect, why would they even want to collect and take the money away from someone who really needs it.

  118. Mike,

    As I recall the original idea for SS was to "assist" an individual in saving for his own retirement, not to force him to pay for everyone else's. Regardless there is a steady trend in every society toward more and more government, fewer and fewer choices, and less liberty. To the extent you earn money but the government confiscates it to spend, you have socialism. It is now such an accepted part of the landscape, that Conservatives have given up trying to reverse the trend, we just want to rein it from a gallop to a trot.

  119. Anonymous12:35 AM

    I know MIKE but see Social security reform for what it really is, another way for the federal government to enforce the average taxpayer to give their hard earned money to large economic interests that are more about making money than providing services, the same as we got basically forced into HMO's poorer medical care for most at a higher cost to all, but those at the top, Insurance industry, Don't get Trent Lott started on this one, they say with a straight face that 120 MPH winds 4 hours before the storm surge did no or minimal damage so they pay little or nothing to Katrina victims, The new Drug plan boondoggle to the pharmaceutical industry but a mess to many seniors,the pensions that most industrial workers from the 50's 60's 70's 80's 90's are disappearing because the industries can not pay what they promised because they did not properly fund their pension obligations, but the federal government is keeping their promise of a secure retirement pension. How are we to know the private account holders won't pull a Milken, keating, lay, skilling on the people they are investing the money for? What about the recent wall street scandals of investment bankers laughing while ripping off investors and still charging their fees? There are many ways to fix the problem that does not give the private sector more money that they have not shown they can be trusted with, and the 20-40 year long investment period of most workers would make me wonder with all the outsourcing and foreign "investment" which means they buy something here, how are we going to make a foreign firm that bought an American investment bank hold to obligations if they move the capital out buy selling the assets off leaving the "shareholders" which would be the retiree with not recourse in the US or elsewhere, just like Enron did. At least the Enron, tyco worldcom employees have social security to fall back on. The retirees of the Airlines that went bankrupt are in a similar boat. An private account is no good if the bank managers are not any more honest than a number of the capitalists through out history have shown , people like John D. Rockefeller, Jay Gould, in the past, and the ones I have mentioned for the present, greed is a problem and the government is supposed to be a check on a person who has the capability from taking advantage from those who can not stop them. Classic example My grandfather lost money in 1929, and never trusted a banker since he called them crooks. History did not start in 1980 and there were sound reasons to the social security act, the SEC, the unemployment payment, FDIC, and a whole lot of programs that the republicans decry now but will or can not admit if the captains of industry from the 1880's -1932 had done a little more for their workers, investors and the less fortunate among their time, some of the rules and regulations would not exist today. Kinda like they brought it on themselves.

  120. Anonymous2:29 AM

    Worfeus, Freedom Fan, Mike, Kirk and others read this and let me know, I was turned on to this on another blog, it's a bit long (even for me) but really worth the reading.

  121. Anonymous2:54 AM

    Another prespective that has merit, fron Think Progresive

    UAE deal and it’s importance to impending IRAN WAR……

    It is the strategic location of the United Arab Emirates that immediately grabbed my attention, as well as their longstanding ties to the United Kingdom.

    If Bush, and Blair, were to order the launch of preemptive airstrikes against nuclear sites inside Iran soon, then the United Arab Emirates, and their location at the southeast end of the Persian Gulf, close to the Strait of Hormuz, would be of unique value militarily.

    Especially if, at the same time these airstrikes were launched, the U.S. and Britain also went after the oil fields and facilities in Iran’s Khuzestan province at the northwest end of the Persian Gulf. This one province produces almost 90 percent of Iran’s oil wealth.

    The Iranians have threatened that, if an attack happens, they will close the Strait of Hormuz and attack any shipping trying to move oil out of the Persian Gulf and to the world’s markets.

    Thus, if I were one of Bush’s wacky strategists planning for such a war, I’d want to make sure that every country on the opposite side of the Persian Gulf from Iran was on board, even if it meant cutting a deal with the UAE and granting them control over a number of U.S. ports in exchange for their cooperation after the war starts.

    And except for that small piece of land Oman has opposite Iran on the Strait of Hormuz, Bush and Blair would control or influence both ends of the Persian Gulf (Iraq and the UAE), with the Saudi Arabians, presumably, either helping Bush and Blair patrol the Persian Gulf and Strait of Hormuz, and stop any Iranian counteroffensives from interrupting the oil flow…or at least not interfering in the Bush and Blair war plans.

    Thus, the hurry-up job by the Bush administration to cede control over some of our major ports to a company owned by the UAE. It is both a financial and a strategic military arrangement. And it would help explain the Bush veto threat made against the U.S. Congress if they dare to interfere. Just like the start of the Iraq War, the starting of war with Iran is following a certain Bush administration timetable.

    Because, you see, a deadline is rapidly approaching. The Iranians, on March 20th, are planning on shifting from the petro-dollar to the petro-euro, or bourse, in exchange for their oil. Which means Bush and Blair must act now, if they, as well as western banking and oil interests, are to maintain the petro-dollar oil monopoly.

    This is the elephant in the room. This is what everyone seems to be avoiding even talking about: the idea of Bush and Blair beginning another war in that area, especially with the fracas in Iraqus still ongoing.

    But, you see, in their minds, what they are doing is completely rational. If Bush and Blair can just take over the province of Khuzestan in Iran, the oil money derived from that will pay for everything. Oh, no, where have I heard that before?

    Anyway, that’s my theory.


    1) Bush ordered several months ago the filling up of the Petroleum Reserve (nee, the Strategic Oil Reserve) to it’s maximum capacity of 1 billion barrels of oil.

    2) The Republicans increased the Petroleum Reserves’ authorized capacity from 750 million barrels to 1 billion barrels. Why do I get the feeling that they are expecting a major, but temporary (they hope), disruption in U.S. oil supplies?

    3) Don’t forget Hugo Chavez and Venezuela, and his recent threats about suspending Venezuelan oil shipments to the United States.

    4) Separate the two issues, the UAE deal and the security at our nation’s major seaports. In other words, when Rumsfeld responded the way he did, was he referring to the UAE deal or the idea that security at our ports might be compromised? Since the update indicates that Rumsfeld was one of the principals who okayed the UAE deal, then it must have been the latter to which he was referring. That is, until the subject was brought to his attention this past weekend, the issue of how the UAE deal might adversely affect U.S. port security never crossed his mind. Gee, sounds just like the lack of Rumsfeld foresight into the “Fracas in Iraqus” aftermath of the attack on Iraq, doesn’t it?

    Comment by TheOracle — February 22, 2006

  122. Anonymous7:32 AM

    Sell it padawane, money take in pocket

    then Nationalize it

    Way this is only

  123. CLIF - what you just posted ( 2:54 a.m. ) about this as a run-up to war with Iran MAKES PERFECT SENSE!!

  124. Clif,

    Thanx for the above link THE CLASH OF CIVILIZATIONS by Samuel T. Huntington, 1993.

    Many interesting parts but this was kinda new:

    Non-Western civilizations have attempted to become modern without becoming Western. To date only Japan has fully succeeded in this quest.

    Western civilization has succeeded primarily because the vast majority of its participants have embraced the Golden Rule:

    Do to others what you would have them do to you.
    -Matthew 7:12, Jesus Christ

    Western civilization succeeds economically to the extent that it is in harmony with the most important economic natural law, best expressed by Adam Smith as an Invisible Hand:

    [Each individual] intends only his own gain, and he is in this, as in many other cases, led by an invisible hand to promote an end which was no part of his intention ... By pursuing his own interest he frequently promotes that of the society more effectually than when he really intends to promote it. I have never known much good done by those who affected to trade for the public good...
    -Adam Smith

    However, the "invisible hand" only works for the common good when the vast majority in a society also embraces Christ's Golden Rule.

    Western civilization also excels culturally because it embraces the Golden Rule. It is tolerant of other cultures and religions and is eclectic; selecting the best features of each culture as its own.

    Consistent with the Golden Rule, Western culture places a very high value upon freedom which allows billions of individuals to each make his own decisions. Freedom facilitates the free exchange of vital information, provides feedback necessary to allow rapid correction of missteps, and ultimately allows each individual to achieve his full human potential.

    In the West, typically the little voice we call our conscience is constantly urging us to follow the Golden Rule. However, in the world of Islam, their little voice of conscience is that of Muhammad. One must study the Quran to understand why an Islamist can commit the most inhumane acts imaginable with a clear "conscience" as they are hailed as heroes by their fellow practitioners.

    It is difficult to imagine how those suffering under Islam can ever advance without embracing these fundamental Western values. Most undoubtedly are slowly realizing this and it must be a very painful epiphany.

  125. Clif, I have to agree with you and Lydia, that a possible war with Iran is a plausible scenario, I am a firm believer that the war in Iraq was in large part to defend the petrodollar.

    I pray you are wrong, because I feel a war with Iran could very well be THE WORST mistake this administration can make particulary if they attempt to seize and secure Iran's oil reserves, like Worf said Iran has powerful allies, China because China needs their oil and Russia because they have been longtime allies, I think if we invaded worst case it could be WW3 and best case China and Russia commit a large amount of troops to expell us, and we either are uterly defeated or we pull out after a long grueling expensive war that achieves nothing and wastes our resources and military might and leaves our country much less safe than before.

    What I have to ask is what has this country come to if our govenment has to mislead the entire nation to fight these sham wars to keep the house of cards from collapsing.

  126. One more thing I was watching C-Span this morning, and Bush stated that he has only known about this port deal for a couple of days and doesnt know very much about it. Now doesnt it sound kind of odd to you that after only a couple of days and claiming to not know very much about it he would be supporting it so vigorously and adamently that he would exercise the veto for the first time. I mean call be crazy, but I think matters of national security should be decided after much thought and deliberation, not after 2 days and very little thought or knowledge as Bush admitted today.

    After this I can only conclude that:
    1) they have some dirt or secret on Bush and co that dont want to come out.
    2) there was some kind of corrupt deal between the Bush admin and the UEA either for money or the war scenaro like Clif stated.
    3) All of the above.

    either way things just dont add up.

  127. Anonymous11:50 AM

    Kirk, Bush wants the one with the pictures so he can understand it better LOL

  128. Anonymous12:11 PM

    WE should get them to buy GM and Ford too

    buddy have I got a deal for you !!!

  129. Anonymous12:12 PM

    What I have to ask is what has this country come to if our government has to mislead the entire nation to fight these sham wars to keep the house of cards from collapsing.

    Study the slow collapse of the ancient Roman Empire and you will see the sequel that Bush is trying to star in.

  130. Anonymous12:15 PM

    Wonder if they will legalize Sponsorship ;) like in Canada ?

  131. Clif said "Study the slow collapse of the ancient Roman Empire and you will see the sequel that Bush is trying to star in."

    I do Clif, thats why i've used Rome as an example several times in my posts, I see us heading down that same road.

  132. Anonymous12:16 PM

    George said...

    WE should get them to buy GM and Ford too

    buddy have I got a deal for you !!!

    George they are using their money to buy Diamler-Chrysler, instead.
    They know quality when they see it, when I was in Desert Storm there were a lot of Mercedes Benz's but few US cars.

  133. Anonymous12:18 PM

    NO Hummers ?

    I did here a report that GM should dump hummer cause its not too profitable..

  134. Anonymous12:19 PM

    In Canada there is a move underway to allow legal poligammy now that the gay precident has been set ....


  135. Anonymous12:26 PM

    Clif , Is there any middle class in those desert countries like here in north america ?

    or is it all rich and poor classes ?

  136. Rome collapsed because they overextended themselves militarily and wasted all their resources fighting corrupt wars, other factors included neglect for the poor, government corruption, totalitarianism, lack of class mobility, high inflation and a government that was essentially bankrupt.

  137. Anonymous12:30 PM

    Rome --- I think it also collapsed because the citizens stopped beliving that it was a good and proper thing.... too many evil things that people did not agree with left Rome standing on a foundation of non supporters.

    maybe that was deserved...

  138. Anonymous12:34 PM

    Mike aren't reruns wonderful to watch

  139. The middle class is rapidly disappearing here George, most of the high paying manufacturing jobs are being outsourced to China and other third world countries.

  140. Anonymous12:40 PM

    We were all supposed to work from 2pm till 3pm now according to George Jetson and the future of work in 1966

    instead we try for jobs at macdonalds for pennies and work 10 times faster with all the marvelous electronic "servants" like computers around.

  141. Clif, I would prefer this rerun to have a different ending that a new 1000 year dark ages.

  142. Anonymous12:44 PM

    Do we have the resources for a 1000 years of MADMAX dark ages?

  143. a shrinking middle class is a very serious thing, two factors that lead to depressions like the Great Depression of the 1930's are:

    1) High debt levels

    2) unequal distribution of wealth, with the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer, and the middle class either disapearing or becoming poorer as well.

    I see both occuring now.

  144. Anonymous12:53 PM

    The taxing of the middle class to support the poor and the easying on the rich


    The outstanding faults of the economic society in which we live are its failure to provide for full employment and its arbitrary and inequitable distribution of wealth and incomes.
    - John Maynard Keynes [1936]

  145. Anonymous12:55 PM

    Some light reading, I found this at think progress;

    February 21, 2006 — The Houses of Bush, Sabah, and Maktoum. The Bush Crime Family’s close business dealings with the royal houses of Kuwait (the Sabah family) and Dubai (the Maktoum family) either borders on or is treason according to information received from U.S. military and Persian Gulf sources by WMR.

    The Sabah family and their business cohorts are reportedly skimming hundreds of millions of dollars from the shipping of military materiel through Kuwait to U.S. forces in Iraq. Moreover, much of this money is being used to fund the Sunni insurgency in Iraq that is directed against U.S. troops. In 1993, former President George H. W. Bush was awarded an honorary doctorate by Kuwait University and Kuwait’s highest honor, the Order of Mubarak the Great. Bush was accompanied on a Kuwait Airways flight by his sons Neil and Marvin and former Secretary of State James Baker III, former chief of staff John Sununu, and Joint Chiefs Operations Director Gen. Thomas Kelly. After the trip, Neil landed lucrative contracts with the Kuwaiti Ministry of Electricity and Water. Marvin secured defense contracts for his clients. Baker nailed down deals for Enron. To ratchet things up with Saddam, Kuwait staged a round up of some Iraqi whiskey smugglers said to be planning the assassination of the elder Bush during his visit to Kuwait. President Clinton launched a cruise missile attack on Iraq in retaliation for the phony assassination attempt.

    The Bush Crime Family: Texas Yankees in the Gulf Emirs’ courts: Dubya, Poppy, Neil, Marvin, and Jeb.

    How many people died so Poppy Bush could be awarded Kuwait’s Order of Mubarak the Great?

    Marvin served on the board of Securacom (renamed Stratesec), which had contracts to provide security for Dulles Airport and the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. Securacom’s backers included a number of Kuwaitis through a company called KuwAm Corp (Kuwaiti-American Corp.). KuwAm also financially backed Aviation General, formerly Commander Aircraft, which brokered the sale of airplanes to the National Civil Aviation Training Organization (NCATO), located in Giza, Egypt, the hometown of lead hijacker Mohammed Atta and the only civilian pilot training school in Egypt. NCATO has a training agreement with Embry-Riddle University in Daytona Beach, Florida, the flight school that was investigated by the FBI for possibly training at least one of the 911 hijackers.

    Neil also developed close connections to the Maktoum family of Dubai, the same family that has interests in the state-owned firm, Dubai Ports World, that is poised to take over the operations of six U.S. ports (New York, New Jersey, Philadelphia-Camden, Miami, New Orleans, and Baltimore) after its purchase of the British-owned Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Co. (P&O Co.).

    Shaikh Hamdan bin Rashid al Maktoum, the Finance Minister of Dubai and someone who certainly had his pulse on the millions of dollars sent through the emirate to the Taliban, Al Qaeda, and Pakistani madrassas and assorted Islamic “charities.”

    UAE banking insiders have revealed that accounts used to fund the Taliban and Al Qaeda involved members of the Dubai royal family. Banking insiders in Dubai report that in March 2002, U.S. Secretary of Treasury Paul O’Neill visited Dubai and asked for documents on a $109,500 money transfer from Dubai to a joint account held by hijackers Mohammed Atta and Marwan al Shehhi at Sun Trust Bank in Florida. O’Neill also asked UAE authorities to close down accounts used by Al Qaeda and affiliated partners like Victor Bout. The UAE complained about O’Neill’s demands to the Bush administration. O’Neill’s pressure on the UAE and Saudis contributed to Bush firing him as Treasury Secretary in December 2002.

  146. Anonymous1:15 PM

    A little more research......

    Dubai's Port of No Return
    Don't jump to conclusions, but there are ties between the UAE, bin Laden, and the Taliban
    by James Ridgeway
    February 22nd, 2006 9:42 AM

    WASHINGTON, D.C.—No matter what Bush and his supporters say, there is indisputable evidence of tight connections between the United Arab Emirates and leadership of both the Taliban and Al Qaeda. The country is the center of financial activity in the Persian Gulf, and has next to no laws controlling money laundering.Two of the hijackers came from the UAE and hijacker money was laundered through the UAE. The details are spelled out in documents in the government's case against Moussaoui.

    The ties with bin Laden and the Taliban reach far back into the '90s. Prominent Persian Gulf officials, including members of the UAE royal family, and businessmen would fly to Kandahar on UAE and private jets for hunting expeditions, the Los Angeles Times reported in 2001. In addition to ranking UAE ministers, these parties included Saudi big wigs like Prince Turki, the former Saudi intelligence minister who now is ambassador to the U.S.

    General Wayne Downing, Bush's former national director for combating terrorism, was quoted on MSNBC in September, 2003 saying, "They would go out and see Osama, spend some time with him, talk with him, you know, live out in the tents, eat the simple food, engage in falconing, some other pursuits, ride horses. One noted visitor is Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktum, United Arab Emirates Defense Minister and Crown Prince for the emirate of Dubai.''

    Bin Laden and Taliban leader Mullah Omar joined the hunting parties, and there are suspicions Al Qaeda and Taliban personnel are smuggled out on returning flights.

    Here is one report, sourced to the 9-11 Commission, appearing in Paul Thompson's 9-11 timeline:

    "February 1999: Bin Laden Missile Strike Called Off for Fear of Hitting Persian Gulf Royalty. Intelligence reports foresee the presence of bin Laden at a desert hunting camp in Afghanistan for about a week. Information on his presence appears reliable, so preparations are made to target his location with cruise missiles. However, intelligence also puts an official aircraft of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and members of the royal family from that country in the same location. Bin Laden is hunting with the Emirati royals, as he did with leaders from the UAE and Saudi Arabia on other occasions (see 1995-2001). Policy makers are concerned that a strike might kill a prince or other senior officials, so the strike never happens. A top UAE official at the time denies that high-level officials are there, but evidence subsequently confirms their presence. (9-11 Commission Report, 3/24/04 (B))"

    It remains a key center of operations for Victor Bout, the notorious arms dealer, with ties to Taliban and Al Qaeda. There were also ties to the infamous BCCI.

    As the Financial Times put it, in the UAE, "Western fraud investigators may find a link here or a connection there, with a person suspected of breaking western laws. But in Dubai, and its neighbor Sharjah, trails tend to vanish like wind-blown tracks in desert sands . . . Secrecy keeps everyone guessing—and speculating . . . 'Medieval feudalism' is how one senior western banker described Dubai's style of government, 'with a veneer of 21st century regulations.' "

  147. Anonymous2:01 PM

    Kirk12 Google carlyle, the bush's binladen's saudi's are all in it and carlyle is in to P&O, the company that operates the ports now and the company that DPW wants to but

  148. Kirk said "The theory being that tax cuts will eventually "trickle down" to the less wealthy...... an idea that the father of our current president once called...... anyone...anyone..... something D-O-O...... anyone....anyone.

    1:13 PM

    I think you are refering to trickle down economics or Reganomics as it is sometimes called. which is a bunch of garbage, even Bush's father didnt believe the rhetoric as evidenced by "the read my lips no new taxes" then he realized that it was in our best interest longterm to raise taxes and try to cut the deficit and balance the budget. He basically committed political suicide, i'm sure this was the major reason he lost the election.

    today I dont even think this adminisration cares that their short term policies and greed could ultimately bring on a depression and cost them as well, they are all just stuffing their face at the trough trying to steal all they can as quickly as possible.

  149. What I keep going back to is Bush is now claiming he knew nothing about the port deal, how the hell do you fire up the sales team and try to sell this to the nation if you know nothing about it??

    And who would veto something they know nothing about???

    either he's a liar or an idiot, my vote is all of the above. This just pisses me off more and more the more I think about it. This guy is constantly lying and breaking the law and just keeps getting away with it.

  150. Bush's claim to fame has been he's out to "protect us" like I said before I think people in charge of national security should be held to a higher standard than ordinary people.

    For instance if this results in a terrorist attack directly related to their misconduct, negliigence or incompetent then I believe they should be facing hard jail time, and if there was misconduct where they knowingly compromised our countrys safety for personal gain, then I feel that is TREASON, and they should either get life in prison or swing from the gibet like many traitors did in the past.

  151. Kirk actually Bush 41 refered to that theory as "Voodoo Economics"

    so I take it he wasnt a strong believer.

  152. Anonymous2:53 PM

    The thing to think about is just like 1929 if the economy crashes, who's not going to suffer in the bread lines, who's not going to get evicted, who's going to still have health care, who's not going to worry the job is safe, who's going to be able to pay their bills, who's not going to have to file bankrupcy, and who's going to have the money to buy up everything that we can no longer pay for, like real estate, stocks, bonds, patents, intellectual property rights, a future?

  153. Anonymous3:35 PM

    why has the State Department issued a Travel Warning to the UAE?

    Because we don't travel with an 100 man security detail like some do, I should know in90-92 part of my job describtion for the Army was to provide EOD support to that detail and did over 20 missions in support.

  154. Anonymous4:06 PM

    Samarra is the same city I linked the story about the US troops who don't know if they can control the insurgency, and now one of the most holy shiites has been damaged, by insurgents, the third attack to shiite religious sites in as many days, for some reason somebody wants the sunni and shiites to fight over Iraq, And they keep telling me it is getting better and we are turning the corner, but the corner does not lead to a better future, but down a dark and dangerous alley where some are gonna get mugged.

  155. Anonymous4:13 PM

    The shrine is one of four major Shiite shrines in Iraq, and two of the 12 imams revered by mainstream Shiites are buried in it: Ali al-Hadi, who died in 868 A.D., and his son, the 11th imam, Hassan al-Askari. According to legend, the 12th Imam, Muhammad al-Mahdi, went into hiding near the shrine, and Shiites believe he will return before the Day of Judgment to bring justice to a fallen world.
    The imam are believed by shiites to be direct decendants of Mohammad. The shiites are mad as hell and I for one do not blame them, BTW Iran is dominated by a Shiite Theocracy.

    Not good for our troops or stability for the region, this story may push the port story off the headlines if the Shiites anger erupts.

  156. Anonymous4:43 PM

    A VA nurse wrote;
    “I am furious with the tragically misplaced priorities and criminal negligence of this government,” she began. “The Katrina tragedy in the U.S. shows that the emperor has no clothes!” She mentioned that she was “a VA nurse” working with returning vets. “The public has no sense of the additional devastating human and financial costs of post-traumatic stress disorder,” she wrote, and she worried about the hundreds of thousands of additional cases that might result from Katrina and the Iraq War.

    “Bush, Cheney, Chertoff, Brown, and Rice should be tried for criminal negligence,” she wrote. “This country needs to get out of Iraq now and return to our original vision and priorities of caring for land and people and resources rather than killing for oil. . . . We need to wake up and get real here, and act forcefully to remove a government administration playing games of smoke and mirrors and vicious deceit.

    Otherwise, many more of us will be facing living hell in these times.”

    She is being investigated for “sedition.” By her bosses at the VA, what happened to HER Freedom of speech, that I and many more vets helped defend who some of them she now helps treat. Funny maybe they told her things that caused her not to believe the "official" truth told by the Government every day in Washington, through DOD spokesman white house press secretary, Officials of the Administration, might the troops know different and spilled the beans. As a side note more vietnam vets have commited suicide after the war than were killed during it, and almost 60,000 were killed there, the nurse has seen the damage in front of her every day and knows the history of vets and the short shift they get from the government, like this year the budget spenbds less per veteran than last year but the war goes on, they have more money for oil companies and tax breaks for the wealthiest amoung us but not enough for the troops who risk life and limbs defending the same wealthy who do not serve.

  157. Anonymous6:51 PM

    But didn't they just today say bush did not know anything about the deal, yet now they want credit for getting a secret security agreement, Scooter can't remember, and Rove can't keep the story straight(hey he's bush's brain it's his job)fire them and those who hired them.

  158. Anonymous7:14 PM

    It's high time these bastards got impeached.They have sold this country out one too many times.

  159. More of the same from Bush and co. While the DP World deal may not pose a security threat, in theory, the close ties of Snow and Sanborn does bring the deal into question. And to think that Bush and Rummy knew nothing about it? No doubt they'll THAT on the disclosure of the warrantless surveillance program.

    "See, if we had the ability to eavesdrop, we would have known about this deal. As a result, this illegal disclosure could have put some of our largest ports at risk of a terrorist attack. We must be vigilant."

  160. Anonymous10:08 PM

    The christofascists are in africa too,

    Pastors and prophecies call Uganda election
    KAMPALA (Reuters) - Hundreds of born-again Christians drop their Bibles and begin singing songs hailing Uganda's long-serving President Yoweri Museveni.
    A pastor tells them he will only bless those who vote for the former rebel leader, and compares Museveni's rivals in Thursday's election to half-cooked food not ready to be served.
    ''If you deceive me and do not vote for Museveni, I will pray that you suffer,'' he tells the two-day prayer meeting in Kampala, before leading a chorus of ''Museveni tajja genda'' (''Museveni won't go'' in the local Luganda tongue).
    Outspoken religious leaders have weighed unashamedly into Thursday's polls -- the first multi-party ballot for 25 years in one of the world's most Christian nations.
    Another pastor, Robert Kayanja, head of the country's biggest born-again church, prophesied that the next president would win 61.8 percent of votes, two candidates would pull out, and a third would die.

  161. Anonymous5:43 AM

    Evil this lonely war is....

    Chancelor Velorumbush his own way goes

    if only master ani-bush would follow the way of the force ...

  162. Anonymous6:27 AM

    Given the recent events in Iraq, many of the current issues that we are talking about may be pushed to the back burner.

    If you want a historical perspective for the sectarian violence in Iraq one need look no further than Northern Ireland as an example of two branches of the same religion(christian) that used tactics of violence to fight each other, and there was even a “foreign”(British to the Irish) occupying power in the mix.

    This latest atrocity could probably be the tipping point to push the Shiites and Sunnis into the downward spiral of escalating violence that erupts into full out civil war, But unlike the situation in Northern Ireland, our “occupation force” has no historical connection to the civilian population.

    One of the most sacred mosques to the Shiite Muslim people is severely damaged, upwards of 95 Sunni mosques have been attacked in retaliation, a number of prominent Sunni clerics have been killed, and some are blaming comments of the American ambasador for helping spark the attack.

    Another historical prespective also comes to mind, the recent break up of Yugoslavia into the seperate ethnic and religious countries with alot of ethnic and religious violance in the process. No amount of foriegn influence could hold Yugoslavia together, nor could the hard line policies of the government in Belgrade. The newly elected government can do little to solve the problem. They do not have the legitimatcy required to influance the population to refrain from retailitory violence. Neither can the US military do much given the animosity that many sunni’s and shiites have for what is commonly viewed as the occupation force.

    The last time we as Americans had their military in the middle of a civil war was Vietnam, and it was a civil war. The last time we as Americans responded to a country going through a civil war was the 90's as Yugoslavia went through a multi-year multistage civil war.

    I wonder if the geniuses in DC will get it. Or will this be the next world event in the middle east that Condi won’t see coming. Will Rumsfeld pass this off as the release of the pent up frustrations of being occupied for three years. Has someone told Bush yet. If they didn’t think Iraq was, as Colin Powell said, broke before, it is now, the only question is, can anyone put it back together again before it explodes?

  163. Anonymous8:14 AM

    Kirk the stumbling block to dividing Iraq is the oil in the northern fields is under land primarily controlled by the Kurds, the oil in the southern fields is under ground controlled by the Shiites, and the Sunni's are fighting to not be left out of control over the oil.

    That and the administration is trying to set up the ministry of oil to benefit their political allies

    All the rest is window dressing to the geniuses in DC which leaves them clueless as to why the Iraqi's don't do as they are told.

  164. Anonymous9:17 AM

    They killed Kenny!!! Those BASTARDS.

  165. Anonymous10:20 AM

    Vietnam won war with US , but now has no financial aid from US

    Bad deal for them--- Winning sucks !!!

  166. Anonymous10:22 AM

    But you leave out the sunni's in Kurwait, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Syria. The Shiites of Iran would want to weigh in as well as the Turks who have publically stated they will resist a free Kurdish state since they have 20 million kurds that might cause them trouble to be free also. The mess is just starting

  167. You know , I didnt really care for Bush 41 while he was president, but looking back with hindsight, I have definately gained some respect for the guy. he wasnt just a blindly loyal partisan robot spewing the partisan rhetoric, he actually made his own decisions many of which went against party ideologies or public opinion or even contradicted what he said earlier. He did this not because he was a "Flip Flopper" (although according to his sons's rules thats the label that would fit him) but because he was thinking long term and responding to new information that came in intead of stubbornly clinging to what he wanted despite any new information that came in to disprove it. The civil war in Iraq is a prime example, Bush 41 stopped short of overthrowing Saddam because despite political pressure he realized it would be a disaster.

    examples would be when he stopped short of invading Bagdad and overthrowing Saddam despite pressure from the Neo Cons, and overwhelming public opinion because he new it would be chaos and we didnt have an exit strategy. He also committed political suicide by raising taxes after the read my lips speech, but he knew that long term it was the right thing to do to reduce the deficit and keep interest rates low to benefit the economy longterm.

  168. Anonymous10:37 AM

    Kinda like a mini cold war with Sadam

    yet he didn't know when to keep his mouth shut ;(

  169. Clif, something that adds credence to what you said that the war in Iraq is all about oil as is the possible confrontation with Iran, is that fact that North Korea has had nuclear weapons for a while, some of which are rumored to be able to hit the Western USA and we have not invaded them or even taken any type of meaningful action against them, kind of makes you question the Bush Administration's justifcations for the war as well as their real motives.

  170. Worfeus said "So far, no state or federal authority -- to our knowledge has dealt with this alarming security threat

    thats what has me scratching my head, why WOULDNT they want to????

  171. yeah, but I blame who ever approved this in the first place for not exibiting due dilligence, do these guys ever think anything through??? Kirk hit the nail on the head when he said these guys kneejerk reaction is to shoot first and ask questions later, even literally in Cheney's case. :D

  172. the guys running our country are not among the great thinkers or planners.

  173. Anonymous1:42 PM

    Want to know what is happening in Iraq now, just go here the Army War College perdicted it in the document written in Feb 2003 before the war even started.

  174. Thats what happens when you think you are omnipotent and silence and discredit any scenarios and points of view that differ from what you want to hear, the most pathetic thing of all is when they say they reached consensus on one of their bone head plans I actually believe them, it only stands to reason that when you surround yourselves with a bunch of yes men and blindly loyal partisan idealogues the only voice of supposed wisdom you are going to hear is your own.

    The really sad part is I think these guys were more concerned with implementing their plan/agenda than truly working together with any non Neo Cons to come up with the best course of action.

  175. MSNBC staff and news service reports
    Updated: 6:30 p.m. ET Feb. 23, 2006
    WASHINGTON - As Democrats attacked the Bush administration over whether a United Arab Emirates company should be allowed to oversee operations at six U.S. ports, President Bush's top adviser said Thursday that the president would be willing to accept a slight delay in the deal.

    When asked in an interview on Fox News radio whether Bush would accept a postponement, White House senior adviser Karl Rove said: “Yes. Look, there are some hurdles, regulatory hurdles, that this still needs to go through on the British side as well that are going to be concluded next week."

    “There’s no requirement that it close, you know, immediately after that,” he said on “The Tony Snow Show.”

    “But our interest is in making certain the members of Congress have full information about it, and that, we're convinced, will give them a level of comfort with this,” he said.

    On the program, Rove sought to allay fears concerning the Dubai deal. "

    Interesting werent all these guys claiming to have no knowledge of this just yesterday, now they are going to provide all this information about it, so which is it, they knew nothing and were supporting it blindly like a bunch of fools, or they know a lot more than they are saying, and they are playing us for a bunch of fools.

    either way Bush is starting look like if I may quote the master here a "Flip Flopper"

  176. Anonymous4:17 PM

    They might have no time for the terrorist attack, the Iraqi situation will explode this Friday if the Iraqi government and the American military try to enforce a curfew on Friday and try to stop Muslims from prayers.

  177. Dubai is a modern city and people have their own living standards, people have interesting backgrounds, every type of person is living but there are a few who are still orthodox and are following their own rules. Dhow cruise dubai Dhow cruise dubai