Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm…..Now this is….Well, Barry do you and McSame want to explain this given your votes to fully fund…..

May 23, 2008

‘Lil’ George’s excellent adventure in Iraqi land?

We don’t know what we got.”

by tristero

Good morning! Are you sitting down?

In one case, according to documents displayed by Pentagon auditors at the hearing before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, a cash payment of $320.8 million in Iraqi money was authorized on the basis of a single signature and the words “Iraqi Salary Payment” on an invoice. In another, $11.1 million of taxpayer money was paid to IAP, an American contractor, on the basis of a voucher with no indication of what was delivered…

The disclosure that $1.8 billion in Iraqi assets was mishandled comes on top of an earlier finding by an independent federal oversight agency, the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, that United States occupation authorities early in the conflict could not account for the disbursement of $8.8 billion in Iraqi oil money and seized assets.

A billion here, a billion there…

And then check this out:

The mysterious payments, whose amounts had not been publicly disclosed, included $68.2 million to the United Kingdom, $45.3 million to Poland and $21.3 million to South Korea. Despite repeated requests, Pentagon auditors said they were unable to determine why the payments were made.

“It sounds like the coalition of the willing is the coalition of the paid — they’re willing to be paid,” said Mr. Waxman

And some more details:

In one instance, a United States Treasury check for $5,674,075.00 was written to pay a company called Al Kasid Specialized Vehicles Trading Company in Baghdad for items that a voucher does not even describe.

In another case, $6,268,320.07 went to the contractor Combat Support Associates with even less explanation. And a scrawl on another piece of paper says only that $8 million had been paid out as “Funds for the Benefit of the Iraqi People.”

But perhaps the masterpiece of elliptic paperwork is the document identified at the top as a “Public Voucher for Purchases and Services Other Than Personal.” It indicates that $320.8 million went for “Iraqi Salary Payment,” with no explanation of what the Iraqis were paid to do.

Whatever it was, the document suggests, each of those Iraqis was handsomely compensated. Under the “quantity” column is the number 1,000, presumably indicating the number of people who were to be paid — to the tune of $320,800 apiece — if the paperwork is to be trusted.

“…if the paperwork is to be trusted.” Now that’s funny. But the joke’s on us.

Tell ya what….
I ain’t laughing.


Congress will matter more as we now have a new branch of government: Supreme Court, Inc.

March 24, 2008

Yep, Bush the Hahvahd ‘CEO’ President, goin’ BK with the nation looks like but more about that later, has succeeded in one of the ‘conservative’ Reich Wing’s fondest dreams. He’s ‘corporatized’ the Supreme Court. Here is the opening para from the NYT:

The headquarters of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, located across from Lafayette Park in Washington, is a limestone structure that looks almost as majestic as the Supreme Court. The similarity is no coincidence: both buildings were designed by the same architect, Cass Gilbert. Lately, however, the affinities between the court and the chamber, a lavishly financed business-advocacy organization, seem to be more than just architectural. The Supreme Court term that ended last June was, by all measures, exceptionally good for American business. The chamber’s litigation center filed briefs in 15 cases and its side won in 13 of them — the highest percentage of victories in the center’s 30-year history. The current term, which ends this summer, has also been shaping up nicely for business interests.

Go on and read the whole disgusting thing. But remember one very important historical fact. The Supreme Court has been on the wrong side of the people’s’ will in the past, Slavery and the era of the railroad trusts come immediately to mind, and the nation never stopped in it’s inexorable march to being a more diverse and progressive nation.

We won’t stop now.

Once again Dear Friends! Into the Fray: GoogleBomb the ReThug Latta!

December 7, 2007

B-17 Memphis Belle in the skies over the Reich, 1944

Yes! Our very progressive pal Chris Bowers of OpenLeft has issued the call to GoogleBomb a ReThug slimeball up for re-election right now! What’s ‘Google Bombing’ you may ask? Here’s my post from pre-2006 about it. That campaign by us and associated progressive blogs shifted the CW in may close districts, clik thru on the reference links to see that, and paved the way for Victory by more than one progressive!


What’s up now?

Here’s email I received from Chris today asking for our help:

‘What to conduct the easiest Googlebomb search engine optimization ever? If so, then I say we target Bob Latta, the Republican candidate in the special election for Ohio’s fifth congressional district. This really will be easy. Currently, a Google search on Bob Latta turns up his Ohio state legislature page as the first result, his campaign website as the second result, and this as the third result:

Casas Elegantes is a small, very personalized rental agency.

We specialize in the finest vacation rentals in San Miguel de Allende. The business is owned and operated by retired Gringo, Bob Latta, who lives full time in San Miguel. Bob, an Arkansas native, retired after a successful 33 year career in sales for ITW/Signode Corporation and moved to San Miguel. After settling in San Miguel with his wife Carol, Bob started Casas Elegantes to bring a new dimension to the vacation home rental business.

Wow. At first, I thought it was too late for a Googlebomb search engine campaign in OH-05, but when I saw that this was the third result on Google searches for Bob Latta, I knew it was still doable. Swing State Project is the fourth result. The DCCC, blog, The Stakeholder, is the fifth. A professor of biology at the University of Toronto is the sixth. An Ohio GOP blog is seventh, Breaking Blue on MyDD is eighth, a bank manger in Palo Alto is ninth, and As Ohio Goes, another Ohio progressive blog, rounds out the top ten.

Without even trying that hard, four progressive blogs are already in the top ten for searches on Bob Latta. With a little effort over the weekend, we should have no problem pushing whatever we want on Latta not only in the top ten, but possibly even above his campaign and state legislature website. On Monday and Tuesday, that could turn into a few thousand effective voter contacts.

Here are the articles I suggest we target:

  • Bob Latta: “Ohio Elections Commission rebukes Latta for lies about foe,” from the excellent local paper the Toledo Blade. This should be the top target, although it does talk about the primary campaign instead of the general.
  • Bob Latta: “Prison doesn’t bar Noe from political controversy, Weirauch ads use ‘Coingate’ figure against rival Latta” also from the Toledo Blade. A pretty good target, too. Not to second guess myself, but maybe this should be the top target.
  • Bob Latta: “DCCC turns up heat in solidly GOP district,” from the Politco. Not bad, but the source of the article isn’t as good as the Toledo Blade. Also, I wonder if the title will help or hurt undecided voter psychology. Will voters who see this article think “oh, all my neighbors vote Republicans, so I should too,” or will they think “hmmm, people around here are turning away from Republicans, so I should too”? Hard to say, but it still might be worth a shot if you don’t like either of the first two articles.

Here is how you can participate. Whenever you write about Bob Latta, embed a hyperlink to the news article of your choice above. If you have a blog, stick your preferred Bob Latta hyperlink in the template of your blog (more info on how to do this, and why it is important, can be found here). If you don’t have a blog, embed your preferred hyperlink into your signature line. BlogPac will purchase in-district Google ads in the district to help out the campaign, and measure how many voter contacts it makes.

Why will this work? Because the most common political action people take online is to look for more information about candidates, and they look for that information on search engines. This technique is designed to direct OH-05 voters looking for information on this campaign to local news articles we want those voters to read. Effectively, it increases the reach of potentially negative press on Republican candidates.’

So, let’s give this a shot. We are already doing quite well on Google results for Bob Latta, but I think with our help Chris and the rest could do even better. If you’re not a blogger just go read all the articles about Mr. Latta and email ’em to your friends. The more folks that look at that info about ‘Bob’ the higher they’ll rank in Google and the more exposure they’ll get.

This would be funny if this Idiot was not running for President….

September 27, 2007

Mittless the Witless shows a fine campaigning style…for a lying Republican member of the uber-rich. This slick-talking  waste of skin is the very definition of uber-rich.


He thinks Americans are dumb enough to buy this totally absurd bullshit.

Wherein Alan ‘The Maestro’ Greenspan is shown to be….Well, you tell me!

September 25, 2007

Here is the transcript of a recent interview with Mr. Greenspan by Amy Goodman:

AMY GOODMAN: We’re also joined in studio by Naomi Klein, author of the book The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism. Your response to that, Naomi Klein?

NAOMI KLEIN: Well, I’m just wondering if it troubles Mr. Greenspan at all that wars over resources in other countries are actually illegal. Mr. Greenspan has praised the rule of law, the importance of the rule of law, in his book. But in his statements about the reasons why this has not been publicly discussed, he has said that it’s not politically expedient at this moment. But it’s not just that it’s not politically expedient, Mr. Greenspan. Are you aware that, according to the Hague Regulations and the Geneva Conventions, it is illegal for one country to invade another over its natural resources?

ALAN GREENSPAN: No. What I was saying is that the issue which, as you know, most people who were pressing for the war were concerned with were weapons of mass destruction. I personally believed that Saddam was behaving in a way that he probably very well had, almost certainly had, weapons of mass destruction. I was surprised, as most, that he didn’t. But what I was saying is that my reason for being pleased to see Saddam out of office had nothing to do with the weapons of mass destruction. It had to do with the potential threat that he could create to the rest of the world.

NAOMI KLEIN: Yes, I realize that, but he was not simply deposed. The US invaded Iraq, occupied it and took control over its resources. And under international law, that it is illegal to wage wars to gain access to other countries’, sovereign countries’, natural resources.

ALAN GREENSPAN: Yes. No, I’m fully aware of the fact that that is a highly, terribly important issue. And as I said in other commentaries, I have always thought the issue of what essentially amounts to what is often called pre-emptive, preventive action on the part of some countries to secure resources or something else like that, it’s an issue that goes back to the Cold War, when we had the very difficult moral dilemma of what do you do when you think a missile is coming in our direction and you’re not sure whether it’s an accident or not an accident. And that is a problem which I think is a deep moral problem in civilized society. And the issue is one which I don’t think we’re going to resolve very easily. And as you point out, yes, I am a believer in the rule of law, and I think it is a critical issue, not only for domestic economies, but for the world economy as a whole.

Read the rest of this entry »

First impeachment is off the table, now filibuster too?

September 22, 2007

Do you call this governing? First impeachment is off the table, now filibuster too? From a recent New York Times editorial, In Search of a Congress:

“We support the filibuster as the only way to ensure a minority in the Senate can be heard. When the cloture votes failed this week, the Democrats should have let the Republicans filibuster. Democratic leaders think that’s too risky, since Congress could look like it’s not doing anything. But it’s not doing a lot now.”

It’s not like they actually brought a piece of legislation to a vote. I totally agree with the Times that the Democrats should call the Republican bluff. I would love a filibuster on the subject of this so-called war on terror. I’ll bet it wouldn’t last a week. The majority is against this war, the people are against this war.

Can you really imagine all the bushdog Democrats and all the lapdog Republicans spouting their lame support for the war, for days on end. Only four votes out of fortyfour need to switch to force a vote and really start to wind down this war. If the Democratic leadership in the Senate does not allow filibuster, then logically they plan to allow this war to continue without end, and they plan to ignore/defy the will of the people.

This so-called leadership will say that filibuster is too risky, a waste of time, there will be a veto anyway. What they’re really saying, is that they would rather defy the will of the people then defy this poor excuse for a president and his corrupt administration.

Democrats in Congress are so risk averse, they can’t even see the possibility of real rewards. A bit of wishful thinking perhaps. Can you imagine if these Democrats actually helped bring a war to an end, restore Habeus Corpus, restore the rule of law, restore the balance of power, restore the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Can you imagine the goodwill of the people towards the Congress? Well, maybe not, but it would be a hell of a good start.

‘Disaster Capitalism’ the Monstrous Offspring of Military Keynsianism.

September 22, 2007

These beefy dudes are here to protect you. They are the proud, the few, the high-paid chumps who do the dirty work for the Bushists, the Xtian Dominionists and Fascistii everywhere on planet earth. Oh…did I say they were gonna protect you? Well if your rich enough to afford to book on Help Jet they will be your buddies. If you are poor, black and live or lived in New Orleans?

Not so fukin’ much.

BlackWater, whom those ‘roided up freaks above work for is a big player in the new boom. The economic engine the Bushists put in place to take the place of the Clintion bubble. This locus of money, military force and free-market cannibalism has a name. Naomi Klein christened the monster ‘Disaster Capitalism’ in her new book Shock Doctrine. Here’s a quote from her Guardian Article:

….the effect was the creation of the disaster capitalism complex – a fully fledged new economy in homeland security, privatized war and disaster reconstruction tasked with nothing less than building and running a privatized security state, both at home and abroad. The economic stimulus of this sweeping initiative proved enough to pick up the slack where globalization and the dotcom booms had left off. Just as the Internet had launched the dotcom bubble, 9/11 launched the disaster capitalism bubble. "When the IT industry shut down, post-bubble, guess who had all the money? The government," said Roger Novak of Novak Biddle Venture Partners, a venture capitalism firm that invests in homeland security companies. Now, he says, "Every fund is seeing how big the trough is and asking, ‘How do I get a piece of that action?’"

The answer to that question was simple all ya had to do was ask. And the money rolled in. Billions of it in fact. From Katrina to The MeatGrinder to the I-34W bridge collapse the opportunities are not only there for tremendous profits with government in the hands of the MI Complex and Bush’s Republican party are in the perfect position to create these opportunities for their friends.

Who got the contracts to build the camps to imprison house the refugees from Katrina? Yeah that would be KBR. A subsidiary of the company Cheney still works for as I remember. Who guards the prisoners in these camps secures the camps? Blackwater of course.

The really big money has taken notice and this is one of the reasons ‘we’ can’t get out of Iraq. It’s just too profitable. If a few Americans, an perhaps a million Iraqis, die, hey, that’s the price of doing business.

And as we all know the business of America is business.

Don’t wanna hear this? Well the situation can be changed but it’s gonna take a lot of time, work and money. But the alternative is a lot worse. We are headed for a dark future if we don’t start now.

You can read more of Klein’s thoughts in the latest Harper’s online (this is a pay to view site). Or ask me I’ve got a copy. And….

It’s not as if people, well people in England, haven’t been concerned about this emerging cancer for quite some time. It’s just that the corporatist press don’t feel you need to know about this stuff. It’s got to be a good idea because it’s in line with the Kool-Aid Jim Jones the ‘free market’ advocates say is the way to go.

What they don’t tell you is that your destination may look a lot like this………….

So pick up the phone and call Rep. Henry Waxman and tell him to spike Blackwater’s guns, as a start, or one day soon you may look out your window and see those guys in my picture…

At your front door.