Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

Archive for July 19th, 2007

Bushco declares willingness to start another war

Posted by Charles II on July 19, 2007

Anwar Iqbal, Dawn:

The White House, after publicly demanding that Pakistan rein in militants linked to Al Qaeda, is now threatening to launch direct attacks into the country’s tribal region to destroy extremist hideouts….

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Posted in Pakistan, world news | 4 Comments »

Judge: breaking the law, betraying the nation is part of Libby, Cheney’s official duties

Posted by Charles II on July 19, 2007

I wish that were a joke headline. But when the Plame civil suit is dismissed because a judge says that the crime whose investigation Scooter Libby obstructed [was part of the normal duties of his office], one can say that the law is completely perverted into political ends.

And the bad actor, US District Judge John Bates,was a member of Ken Starr’s team.

(Thanks to Mike Clark at Buzzflash and Thom, commenting at Avedon’s Sideshow)

[Corrected 7/23]

Posted in activist judges | 6 Comments »

One continent, under GOP, indivisible…

Posted by Charles II on July 19, 2007

Steven Lendman has an interesting article regarding the complete integration of Canada, Mexico, and the United States into one “security zone.” Normally, this is the kind of stuff that I would brush off as hyperventilation. I have, however, picked up enough confirmation (described in an article in La Jornada in a previous post) to give it a bit of plausibility. The fact that authoritarians Bush, Calderon, and Harper are in power makes it even more credible. At any rate, here’s the essence of it (emphasis added in places):

Besides the Bush administration’s imperial aims and permanent war on the world, add … the people of three nations slowly becoming one headquartered in Washington. That’s the apparent aim of those in power here wanting one continent, “indivisible”…

The Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP) or “Deep Integration” North American Union

SPP was formerly launched at a March 23, 2005 meeting in Waco, Texas attended by George Bush, Mexico’s President Vincente Fox and Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin. It’s a tri-national agreement hatched below the radar in Washington… It advocates greater US, Canadian and Mexican economic, political, social, and security integration with secretive working groups formed to devise non-debatable agreements that, when completed, will be binding beyond the power of legislatures to change. It’s also taking shape without public knowledge or consideration.

…It’s a scheme to create a borderless North American Union under US control without barriers to trade and capital flows for corporate giants, mainly US ones. It’s also to insure America gets free and unlimited access to Canadian and Mexican resources, mainly oil, and in the case of Canada water as well. …

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Posted in abuse of power, Mexico | 5 Comments »

Mandela’s Gift

Posted by MEC on July 19, 2007

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Nelson Mandela celebrated his birthday yesterday by, well, by being Nelson Mandela.

Nelson Mandela celebrated his 89th birthday Wednesday by joining with other Nobel peace laureates, politicians and development experts to form a council of elders dedicated to fostering peace and resolving global crises.

The Council of Elders:

  • Nelson Mandela, former president of South Africa
  • Jimmy Carter, former president of the United States
  • Former Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa
  • Kofi Annan, former United Nations secretary-general from Ghana
  • Aung San Suu Kyi, Nobel Peace laureate, under house arrest in Myanmar
  • Ela Bhatt, women’s rights campaigner from India
  • Gro Harlem Brundtland, former Norwegian prime minister
  • Li Zhaoxing, former envoy to the United Nations from China
  • Graca Machel, campaigner for children’s rights from South Africa
  • Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland
  • Muhammad Yunus, economist from Bangladesh

Posted in heroes, Nelson Mandela, peace | 3 Comments »

Fighting for Independence

Posted by MEC on July 19, 2007

In a comment to this post, WhattheH calls our attention to an article in The Guardian (via Truthout) about the political aims of the Iraqi insurgency.

Seven of the most important Sunni-led insurgent organisations fighting the US occupation in Iraq have agreed to form a public political alliance with the aim of preparing for negotiations in advance of an American withdrawal, their leaders have told the Guardian.

As WhattheH noted in the comment, the article “seems to contradict in several ways the White House spin”.

It certainly does. These insurgents want nothing to do with al-Qaida:

In their first interview with the western media since the US-British invasion of 2003, leaders of three of the insurgent groups – responsible for thousands of attacks against US and Iraqi armed forces and police – said they would continue their armed resistance until all foreign troops were withdrawn from Iraq, and denounced al-Qaida for sectarian killings and suicide bombings against civilians.

They also want nothing to do with Iran:

The insurgent groups deny support from any foreign government, including Syria, but claim they have been offered and rejected funding and arms from Iran.

And they connect the sectarian conflict with U.S. domination of the political process:

All three Sunni-based resistance leaders say they are acutely aware of the threat posed by sectarian division to the future of Iraq and emphasised the importance of working with Shia groups – but rejected any link with the Shia militia and parties because of their participation in the political institutions set up by the Americans and their role in sectarian killings.

This article reinforces my conclusion that the only sane and moral choice for the United States is to get the hell out of Iraq and let the Iraqis sort it out. They cannot reach a settlement as long as the U.S. is dictating what the government should be and who gets to be in it.

Posted in Iraq war, real journalism | 7 Comments »

Every So Often, Harry Reid Reminds Us That He Really Was A Boxer In His Youth

Posted by Phoenix Woman on July 19, 2007

big-hammer.jpg

And not by acting punch-drunk, either.

If you’re wondering why the Republicans (particularly the phony “mavericks” in the WINO caucus) are especially enraged at him today, it’s because he’s just cut off their last lines of escape:

4. What are the prospects for the Dems succeeding in breaking the GOP filibuster?

They’re actually better now that the softer Iraq amendments can’t get passed. That’s because yanking the bill rules out the introduction of other, nonbinding amendments that nervous Republicans were inclined to support. Without the option of supporting such amendments, Republicans can’t plausibly claim to constituents to have done anything to stop the war. In turn, that increases the pressure on them to support the only available option left — i.e., a binding measure mandating withdrawal, such as the one favored by Dems.

That’s probably the real reason why Republicans are furious with Reid today for removing the bill and all its amendments. (Well, that and sleepiness.) Case in point: Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA). In his floor statement right after the cloture vote failed, a visibly angry Specter inveighed against the Senate’s lack of debate on the most prominent GOP amendment — John Warner and Richard Lugar’s toothless proposal for Bush to submit a post-surge strategy to Congress after Petraeus’s report. Specter, clearly, wanted the option of supporting Warner-Lugar, an option Reid has taken away.

As a result, when debate eventually resumes, Specter will have to choose between either staying with the surge or mandated redeployment. Even for a moderate GOP Senator not up for reelection next year, stark choices are not pleasant ones. Get ready to see more waverers — though, as Greg has been pointing out, not all waverers actually vote their wavering consciences.

The wild card here for the WINOs is the September Petraeus report. No matter how nuanced a picture of Iraq Petraeus paints to Congress, the White House will use it as a rallying cry for continuing the war. How much support that can give to a GOP Senator whose constituents loudly hate the war is one of the big unknowns.

One thing that could conceivably cause more Republicans to defect, ironically, would be President Bush portraying Petraeus’s report as more optimistic than it in reality. The same could happen if Petraeus’s report itself is more optimistic than Iraq seems to warrant. Either of those could diminish whatever credibility on Petraeus’ part the White House is out to exploit, leaving the GOP caucus set to fracture ahead of the next election.

This, my little chickadees, is the key. No more hiding behind bullcrappy shields like the Warner-Lugar amendment or The Salazar Distraction. Either you back bringing ’em home, or you back Bush. It’s really that simple.

Now we get to see how many Republican “mavericks” who’ve been talking faux-tough about How They Oppose Bush are willing to actually vote to oppose Bush.

[UPDATE: DrenchedOtter over in a Fire Dog Lake comments thread reminds me that Reid had even given the Republicans the chance to vote on their bogus Warner-Lugar and Salazar legislation if they would only end the filibuster. They refused, as he knew they would — and then and only then did he yank the defense authorization bill.  That totally gives the lie to Specter’s “Waaaah!  He won’t let us vote for Warner-Lugar!” baloney.  Hey, he gave you the chance and you turned it down, boyo.]

Posted in 2008, Bush, Busheviks, Democrats, Democrats with spines, distractions, Harry Reid, hypocrites, Iraq war, rats deserting Bush's ship, Republicans | 8 Comments »

More Fallout From The Great Northfield Smack Epidemic

Posted by Phoenix Woman on July 19, 2007

Wow. Looks like Miss Gulch might be this guy’s only friend left:

Taking a leave of absence in the middle of a controversy surrounding heroin use in Northfield isn’t the only surprise Police Chief Gary Smith delivered this week.Smith’s attorney confirmed Wednesday that just before beginning his leave Monday, the chief forwarded to Rice County Attorney Paul Beaumaster the findings of a preliminary investigation he had been conducting of city administrator Al Roder on unspecified contractual matters and data practices.

Roder said Wednesday that he had not been officially informed of any such investigation, and he strongly denied any wrongdoing. No charges have been filed against him.

“I truly am not aware of a criminal act I might have committed, and if there is an allegation I’d sure like to find out what it is so I can address it,” he said.

So Smith’s last act before before leaving is to sully the reputation of the city administrator. Charming.

If you’re wondering why Police Chief Smith is going on an indefinite leave of absence, it just might be because he got caught talking smack about a nonexistent heroin-and-crime epidemic in his town:

Smith called the news conference the day before without letting Richardson know. He told reporters that 150 to 250 Northfield youth were using heroin or the prescription drug oxycodone, that a recent hike in burglaries and thefts could be attributed to rising heroin use and that some habits could be costing users as much as $800 a day.

Richardson and other school officials took issue with Smith’s numbers, pointing out that 15 students had been referred for heroin treatment in the past school year. Sarah Shippy, a behavioral-health specialist who runs the only chemical dependency treatment program in town, said she was aware of 55 to 60 Northfield youths who had either tried opiates, used them or had become addicted.

Contrary to what Smith said, area hospitals said there were no reports of youths conning patients out of oxycodone; school officials said there was no heroin ring at the high school, and local colleges reported a mixed record on recent campus thefts.

Oooooopsie!

Posted in abuse of power, family values, mythmaking, paranoia, WTF? | 9 Comments »

 
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