Saturday, May 30, 2009

Cheney's claims unsubstantiated.

Remember Cheney's claim that "secret memos" would vindicate him?

Not only is that a low blow politically, because no matter what Obama releases Cheney could always claim the existance of "secret memos" that proved his points, regardless of actual existance, but it is just plain unsubstantiated.

Sen. Carl Levin, D-Michigan, Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, has seen those "secret memos" that Cheney speaks of.

Levin, speaking at the Foreign Policy Association's annual dinner in New York on Wednesday, said an investigation by his committee into detainee abuse charges over the use of the techniques -- now deemed torture by the Obama administration -- "gives the lie to Mr. Cheney's claims."

The Michigan Democrat told the crowd that the two CIA documents that Cheney wants released "say nothing about numbers of lives saved, nor do the documents connect acquisition of valuable intelligence to the use of abusive techniques."
"I hope that the documents are declassified, so that people can judge for themselves what is fact, and what is fiction," he added.

A former State Department official has told CNN that the main purpose of the Bush-era interrogations was finding a link between Iraq and al Qaeda.
Lawrence Wilkerson, chief of staff for then-Secretary of State Colin Powell, said that the interrogation program began in April and May of 2002, and Cheney's office kept close tabs on the questioning.
"Its principal priority for intelligence was not aimed at preempting another terrorist attack on the U.S. but discovering a smoking gun linking Iraq and al Qaeda," Wilkerson wrote in The Washington Note, an online political journal.

Levin...said the enhanced interrogations have hurt America's image.
"Cheney's world view, which so dominated the Bush years and dishonored our nation, gained a little traction last week -- enough to persuade me to address it head-on here tonight," Levin said. "I do so because if the abusive interrogation techniques that he champions, the face of which were the pictures of abuse at Abu Ghraib, if they are once more seen as representative of America, our security will be severely set back."

Read the whole article here.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Obama: What good IS diplomacy?

I was never a fan of Bush's foreign policy ("yeehaw!")...

But Obama is doing nothing about North Korea's test launch, then nuclear test.

We should have blown the test missile out the sky. We wouldn't have to invade, like Bush, but Obama, you should have shown them that we won't allow them to become proficient with long-range weapons.

Waiting on the UN or NATO? Not gonna happen. They've all but abandoned us in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"The international community struck the usual poses that follow North Korea's periodic outrages. Obama said in a statement that the test would "serve to deepen North Korea's isolation." South Korea called for an "emergency meeting" of the United Nation Security Council (a wish that was granted, with a meeting schedule for later on Monday). The Japanese government said it would "not tolerate" such actions. Russia expressed its "concern." Even the Chinese, North Korea's alleged ally, said they were "firmly opposed" to the test.

None of that offered much hope for change. North Korea is already the world's most isolated country. The only thing that would meaningfully "deepen" that isolation would be for China to shut down trade entirely across its border — something Beijing has never given any indication that it's prepared to do. The idea that Kim Jong Il's regime even cares if its isolation "deepens" is dubious at best. As for the U.N., it met in emergency session just after the long-range missile launch in April, and gently tightened sanctions that were already having no demonstrable effect on North Korea's behavior on key security issues. Will another "emergency session" really produce painful sanctions that could conceivably make a difference? That, after all, is presumably what Tokyo has in mind when it talks about "not tolerating" the North's behavior. 

For a hint as to how effective the U.N. might be, talk to the Russians. Moscow is "concerned" — not outraged — by today's test. Don't expect much, in other words, from the Security Council, even if the test is as direct a violation as possible of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1718, which calls on Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear program. The Chinese, like Obama, desperately want the North Koreans to return to the negotiating table in Beijing, where the so-called six party talks were held during the Bush years. But Beijing may be coming to the reluctant conclusion, if they haven't already, that North Korea means what it says: it intends to be a state armed with nuclear weapons, whether the rest of the world likes it or not."

And that is unacceptable. 

Obama, please step it up. You don't have to be a cowboy, but you do need to do more than talk.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Sotomayor + Rush's ignorance...

Furthering my theory that Rush in uneducated lifewise, or purposefully ignorant, Rush Limbaugh came out against Sonia Sotomayor, saying

"Do I want her to fail? Yeah. Do I want her to fail to get on the court? Yes. She'd be a disaster on the Court.
Do I still want to Obama to fail as President? Yeah, -- AP, you getting this?
He's gonna fail anyway, but the sooner the better here so that as little damage can be done to the country."

And why would she be a disaster? Oh, because Obama appointed her. Nothing else.

He forgets to mention that she was first appointed to the bench by President H.W. Bush in November 1991. She's also considered a political centrist by the American Bar Association, which is what you want in a Judge; you want someone not tied down by party lines.

Not to mention that George W. Bush also considered her as a supreme court nominee, not to mention she is more qualified than anyone else currently holding the position.

Rush Limbaugh only cares because Obama appointed her. That's all. Why? Because he wants Obama to fail. Not in his "socialist agenda," but wants "Obama to fail as President."

Partisan, ignorant, fear-monger.

Good luck, Sonia. Rush Limbaugh has his drug-addled sights set on you.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Why Dick Cheney sucks.

Colin Powell is still better than Dick Cheney, no matter what (drug addict, racist, uneducated* [flunked out of college, and barely passed high school, has no pertinent experience in politics whatsoever, yet is still one of the top de facto leaders of the Republican Party]) Rush Limbaugh says. Here's why: Quite simply, Dick Cheney is, well, a dick.

Here's a list substantiating my opinion:

1. Dick Cheney is, unapologetically, a Neo-Conservative.
Cheney founded the Project for the New American Century, a neoconservative U.S. think tank whose self-stated goal is to "promote American global leadership."
2. From 1995-2000 was the CEO of Haliburton.
Cheney and Haliburton are under current investigation by the US Dept of Justice, the FBI, and the Pentagon for allegedly getting unlawful special attention for contracts during the Iraq war.
3. Disdain for the American Public that he was serving.
When told that most Americans were not happy with how the Iraq war was going, he slipped and said "so?"
4. As of 2004, Dick Cheney has received $398,548 in deferred compensation from Haliburton, while serving as Vice-President of the United States.
5. Doesn't like Free Press.
While serving as Deputy Assistant to the president in 1974-1975 under President Ford, Cheney suggested in a legal memo that the President should use the US Dept of Justice to punish the New York Times for an unfavorable article.
6. The John Yoo/Bybee memos:
Cheney advocated the revocation of many of the Bill of Rights, even for US Citizens, during the "War on Terror."
7. He shot someone in the face:
On February 11, 2006, Cheney accidentally shot Harry Whittington, a 78-year-old Texas attorney, in the face, neck, and upper torso with birdshot pellets when he turned to shoot a quail while hunting on a southern Texas ranch.
8. Advocate for Torture:
Waterboarding and "enhanced interrogation" is torture, and therefore undermines the United States' moral authority.
9. Advocate for big government:
Supported Nixon's illegal acts, and has actively pursued expansion of the President's powers, challenging Congressional Laws, including but not limited to: the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the Presidential Records Act, the Freedom of Information Act and the War Powers Resolution.
10. Spied on the American Public:
Part of the illegal NSA warrantless wiretap scandal, spying on US Citizens in clear violation of due process.
11. Dismal voting record during his tenure as a Congressman in 1979-1989, showing more contempt for the American Public (unless you're rich and white):
  • Repeatedly voted against programs designed to provide assistance to displaced workers.
    Voted against legislation requiring factory owners to notify employees before closing their plants. Cast 10 separate votes against funding nutrition programs for children, including one vote opposing a move to protect food programs for women and infants from budget cuts.
  • Repeatedly voted against maintaining funding for Head Start programs.
    Voted against a measure that granted time off for federal employees to care for sick family members.
  • Voted against the Hunger Relief Act, which expanded eligibility for the federal food stamp program.
  • Voted against providing mortgage assistance for low income home buyers.
  • Opposed college student aid programs contained in the Higher Education Act.
  • During the recession of the early 1980s, voted to block extension of unemployment benefits, including a provision that would provide health insurance for unemployed workers and their families.
  • Voted against the Equal Rights Amendment.
  • Voted for Ronald Reagan’s veto of the Civil Rights Restoration Act.
  • Voted to limit Social Security cost-of-living adjustments for retired Americans living on fixed incomes.
  • Was one of only eight members of the House to vote against renewing the Older Americans Act, which provided nutritional and other support services for elderly Americans. (If Cheney’s opposition had succeeded, the entire nutritional program would have effectively been shut down).
  • Voted against limiting out-of-pocket expenses for Medicare recipients, most of whom were senior citizens. His votes were so consistently counter to the interests of the elderly that a Cox News Service headline declared, “Senior Groups Call Cheney’s Voting Record a Disaster.”
  • Not only did Cheney’s votes tend toward unfairness on domestic issues, he actually voted against sanctioning South Africa’s apartheid regime for its repressive policies. He was also a vocal opponent of Nelson Mandela’s release from prison.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Cheney, Limbaugh OWNED.

Recently, former Vice-President Dick Cheney came out against Colin Powell, saying that he would take Rush Limbaugh over Powell any day.

Roberta McCain, mother of Republican Presidential Candidate John McCain, spoke out against Rush Limbaugh Wednesday night on Jay Leno's show, saying that Rush Limbaugh "does not represent the Republican Party that I belong to".

"I belong to the Republican Party," McCain, 97, said. "What he represents of the Republican Party has nothing to do with my side of it. I don't know what the man means, I don't know what he's talking about."

Regarding Michael Steele, Republican National Committee Chairman, she praised him for labeling Limbaugh an "entertainer" earlier this year during an interview on CNN:
"I think [Steele] was exactly right when he defined this man as an entertainer," she said. "To my horror, the Republican Party made him back up on it."

Limbaugh has long been a critic of John McCain, publicly urging listeners to vote against him during the Republican presidential primaries last year. Most recently, Limbaugh said McCain and his outspoken daughter, Meghan, should follow Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter out of the GOP.

The long-time Republican also critisized liberal television host Keith Olbermann for doing the same sort of stuff:
"I, myself, can't figure out that type of person who really more or less gets joy out of denigrating people. I'm just not that type of person, I don't have friends like that, and thank God I am not around people like him."

Regarding Cheney, Bill Clinton just nailed him recently:
"I wish him well," Clinton told CNN while greeting voters after a campaign stop with Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe. "It's over," he added, apparently a reference to the Bush administration.
"But I do hope he gets some more target practice before he goes out again," Clinton said with a grin before moving along the ropeline.

All I have to say is OWNED.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Obama prays in private.

Good job, Mr. President.

It seems President Obama has a better grasp of faith than his predecessors.

From CNN:
For the past eight years, the White House recognized the National Day of Prayer with a service in the East Room, but this year, President Obama decided against holding a public ceremony.

President Bush marked the National Day of Prayer with a service at the White House.

"Prayer is something that the president does everyday," White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Tuesday, noting that Obama will sign a proclamation to recognize the day, as many administrations in the past have done.

Here are Jesus' words, straight out of the Bible, regarding prayer (contextually, this is the same passage that gives the Lord's prayer):

Matthew Chapter 6:5-6
"And now about prayer. When you pray, don't be like the hypocrites who love to pray publicly on street corners and in the synagogues where everyone can see them. I assure you, that is all the reward they will ever get.
But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father secretly. Then your Father, who knows all secrets, will reward you."

I think Obama nailed this.

Those in an uproar over Obama not praying publicly, two things:

1. He's not supposed to. Jesus' words are right above, in case you missed it. Get over it.

2. He's not supposed to. Obama is part of the State. Separation of Church and State. Get over it.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Congratulations, Maine!

(CNN)~Same-sex marriage became legal in Maine on Wednesday as Gov. John Baldacci signed a bill less than an hour after the state legislature approved it.

It looks like the close-mindedness* of California('s Mormon Church) has been overshadowed by the East Coast once again. This makes four: Massachusetts, Connecticut and Iowa have already legalized gay marriage, and Vermont has passed a law making it legal in September.

California's High Court is, thankfully, scrutinizing Proposition 8 to see if its discriminatory nature is constitutional or not (it isn't). Hopefully soon all 50 States will break away from their discriminatory past.

*Closemindedness refers to the discriminatory nature of Proposition 8, not to religious beliefs.