Archive for May 24th, 2008

The Neo Cons Are Running Scared…

GEF @ 5:08 PM MST

PNAC Think Tank Web Site Shut Down

The web site of the neoconservative based Project for a New American Century think tank has been taken down. The think tank in their own documents advocated the virtues of using the U.S. military as a global police force. They also endorsed preemptive war as a way to shape the world and even lobbied to get Bill Clinton to invade Iraq back in 1998. Contributors and signatories associated with the think tank included several high profile figures in George W. Bush’s administration including Paul Wolfowitz, Donald Rumsfeld, John Bolton, Scooter Libby, Dick Cheney, Richard Armitage and Richard Perle. Documents originating from this think tank have been the subject of a great deal of criticism by the 9/11 truth and anti-war movements. It now looks as if the neoconservatives whose agenda has been faltering as of late have decided to pull the plug on the web site for the purposes of damage control. If not, than somebody forgot to pay their Internet provider. We’ll let you be the judge of which is the more likely scenario.

In 2000, the think tank released a 90 page document entitled Rebuilding America’s Defenses. In the document, the think tank actually advocates a catastrophic and catalyzing Pearl Harbor event in order to seek faster global transformation using U.S. military might. In addition, one of the core missions outlined in the report is “fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous major theater wars.” What luck for the neoconservatives that a catastrophic and catalyzing event occurred on September 11th, 2001 that made one of their core missions in their report become a reality.

The following quote is taken direct from the document advocating a catastrophic and catalyzing event to further their agenda of global transformation. The 9/11 truth movement has pointed to this quote as additional evidence that the 9/11 attacks were orchestrated by criminal elements within the U.S. government. Considering that many of the think tank’s signatories were in high level positions in the Bush administration during the 9/11 attacks and the think tank believed that such an attack was in order, the neoconservatives certainly had a motive to pull off this false flag terror attack. After all, their entire agenda was fulfilled as a result of the 9/11 attacks.

“Further, the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event – like a new Pearl Harbor”

Not only did it foreshadow the 9/11 attacks but the document is widely viewed as the neoconservative blueprint for the U.S. military in the 21st century. Looking at the document 8 years after it was published, it is clear that much of what was suggested in the document has in fact been implemented. We now have military bases all over the Middle East; there’s been a massive increase in military spending, increased militarization of space and billions of dollars spent on new cyber warfare initiatives.

It is pretty obvious why they would decide to take down the official web site for the think tank. The Rebuilding America’s Defenses document must be incredibly embarrassing for them and there’s little doubt that it has served as a public relations nightmare for the neoconservatives. When examining the 9/11 attacks, it is necessary to look at who had the most to gain. Clearly, the neoconservatives who came into power with the Bush administration back in 2001 had the most to gain and this particular document proves it. The neoconservatives are nothing more than war mongering, anti-American, big government terrorists that have brought ruin to this country. Either way, the removal of their web site looks to be an indication that their agenda is being discredited on a massive scale.

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The Last Good Campaign

anthony @ 21:30 BST

Increasingly opposed to the Vietnam War, Robert F. Kennedy struggled over whether he should challenge his party’s incumbent president, Lyndon Johnson, in 1968. His younger brother, Teddy, was against it. His wife, Ethel, urged him on. Many feared he would be assassinated, like the older brother he mourned.

by Thurston Clarke | Vanity Fair | June 2008

Bobby Kennedy campaigns in Indianapolis during May of 1968, with various aides and friends, including (behind and left of Kennedy) former prizefighter Tony Zale and (right of Kennedy) N.F.L. stars Lamar Lundy, Rosey Grier, and Deacon Jones. Photographs by Bill Eppridge.

Text excerpted from The Last Campaign: Robert F. Kennedy and 82 Days That Inspired America by Thurston Clarke, to be published this month by Henry Holt and Company, L.L.C.; © 2008 by the author.

Photographs excerpted from A Time It Was: Bobby Kennedy in the Sixties; photographs and text by Bill Eppridge; introduction by Pete Hamill; to be published this month by Abrams; © 2008 by Bill Eppridge.

Two months after John F. Kennedy’s assassination, Robert Kennedy traveled to Asia on an itinerary that had originally been planned for J.F.K. During the trip, he visited a girls’ school in the Philippines where the students sang a song they had composed to honor his brother. As he drove away with CBS cameraman Walter Dombrow, he clenched his hands so tightly that they turned white, and tears rolled down his cheeks. He shook his head, signaling that Dombrow should remain silent. Finally he said in a choked voice, “They would have loved my brother.” Dombrow put his arm around him and said, “Bob, you’re going to have to carry on for him.” Kennedy stared straight ahead for half a minute before turning to Dombrow and nodding. It was then, Dombrow said, that he knew Bobby would run for president and realized how much he loved him.

A deep, black grief gripped Robert Kennedy in the months following his brother’s assassination. He lost weight, fell into melancholy silences, wore his brother’s clothes, smoked the cigars his brother had liked, and imitated his mannerisms. Eventually his grief went underground, but it sometimes erupted in geysers of tears, as had happened in the Philippines. He wept after seeing a photograph of his late brother in the office of a former aide, wept when asked to comment on the Warren Commission Report, and wept after eulogizing J.F.K. at the 1964 Democratic convention with a quotation from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet: “When he shall die, take him and cut him out in little stars, and he shall make the face of heaven so fine that all the world will be in love with night and pay no worship to the garish sun.”

Kennedy was still mourning his brother and endeavoring to live for him when he ran for the U.S. Senate from New York in the autumn of 1964, telling a friend that he wanted to ensure that the hopes J.F.K. had kindled around the world would not die, and saying in his victory statement that he had won “an overwhelming mandate to continue the policies” of President Kennedy. And at first it appeared that his 1968 presidential campaign—challenging his brother’s successor, Lyndon Johnson, for the Democratic Party’s nomination—would be another homage to J.F.K. Bobby announced his candidacy on March 16 in the caucus room of the Old Senate Office Building, the room that his brother had used for the same purpose. He stood in the same spot and began with the same sentence: “I am announcing today my candidacy for the presidency of the United States.” After saying that he was running to “close the gaps that now exist between black and white, between rich and poor, between young and old,” he concluded with a passage that made him sound like his brother, perhaps because it had been contributed in part by Ted Sorensen, who had been his brother’s speechwriter: “I do not lightly dismiss the dangers and the difficulties of challenging an incumbent President. But these are not ordinary times and this is not an ordinary election. At stake is not simply the leadership of our party and even our country. It is our right to the moral leadership of this planet.” (more…)

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John McCain’s Budget Numbers Don’t Add Up

By- Suzie-Q @ 1:00 PM MST

From: Carpetbagger Report

Voodoo economics doesn’t die, it just gets picked up by new GOP candidates

It’s not exactly a shocking revelation that John McCain’s budget numbers don’t add up. Presidential candidates’ numbers are often rather pie-in-the-sky, and political observers have been conditioned to give campaigns at least a little leeway and wiggle room.

But from time to time, it’s worth keeping in mind that McCain’s budget promises aren’t just wrong, they’re spectacularly ridiculous.

McCain recently told NPR, for example, “I can eliminate $100 billion of wasteful and earmark spending immediately — $35 billion in big spending bills in the last two years, and another $65 billion that has already been made a permanent part of the budget.” He told George Stephanopoulos almost the exact same thing: “You do away with those, there’s $100 billion right before you look at any agency.”

This magical savings, McCain has said, allows him to make promises about eliminating the deficit altogether in four years, and making Bush’s tax cuts permanent, and passing new tax cuts of his own, and keeping U.S. troops in Iraq indefinitely.

The WaPo’s Michael Dobbs took a closer look at McCain’s inability to do arithmetic.

There are a number of problems with this magical budgetary balancing act. First of all, the suspiciously round $100 billion figure is largely a figment of the McCain campaign’s imagination. I have not been able to find a single independent budget expert to vouch for it. McCain’s economics adviser, Doug Holtz-Eakin, will not say how the campaign arrived at the figure, other than that it is an extrapolation from various studies….

The CRS study breaks down earmarks by different government departments, without giving a global figure. According to Scott Lilly, a former Democratic appropriations staffer now with the Center for American Progress Action Fund, the CRS study identifies a total of $52 billion in earmarks for a single year. However, much of this money is tied to items such as foreign aid to countries like Israel, Egypt, and Jordan, that McCain says he will not touch.

By most definitions of the term, the amount of money spent on earmarks is much lower than the CRS study. The Office for Management and the Budget came up with a figure for $16.9 billion in the 2008 appropriation bills. Taxpayers for Commonsense, an independent watchdog group that focuses on wasteful spending, identified $18.3 billion worth of earmarks in the 2008 bills, a 23 per cent cut from a record $23.6 billion set in 2005.

How much of this $18.3 billion could be eliminated is a “difficult question that we have not yet figured out,” said Taxpayers for Commonsense vice-president Steve Ellis. The figure includes such items as $4 billion for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which could not be eliminated without halting hundreds of construction projects around the country. Another big chunk goes to military construction, including housing for servicemen and their families, which McCain has also promised not to touch.

Wait, it gets worse.

Looking at the NPR quote, McCain said $65 billion in earmark spending “has already been made a permanent part of the budget.” No one know what on earth that even means — Bruce Riedl, a budget analyst with the conservative Heritage Foundation, told Dobbs, “I don’t understand how they come up with that.”

Excluding those programs McCain has promised to preserve, the draconian slashing of earmark expenditures might save around $10 billion a year. But that is still a long way from the $100 billion in savings that McCain says that he can identify “immediately.”

The McCain camp now says that the senator never meant to suggest that his proposed $100 billion in savings would all come from earmarks. Holtz-Eakin told me that McCain had simply promised to cut overall spending by around $100 billion. Some of these savings will come from earmarks, some from other parts of the budget. He declined to identify which specific projects would be cut.

Asked whether McCain had misspoke or whether he had been misunderstood in his focus on eliminating earmarks, Holtz-Eakin replied: “a bit of both.”

Dobbs concluded, “To use a phrase coined by George H.W. Bush, this is ‘voodoo economics,’ based more on wishful thinking than on hard data or carefully considered policy proposals.”

In the broader political context, maybe reporters and voters expect candidates to lie when making budget promises, but McCain has vowed to be different — more honest, more forthcoming, less deceptive. He’s been in Congress for a quarter of a century. He knows the budget, he knows what’s possible, and yet, he tries to deceive voters anyway.

If McCain is already lying about what he can achieve with the budget, how can anyone take him seriously on anything else?

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anthony @ 17:30 BST

Gore Vidal tells Mary Wakefield that America has forgotten its constitutional roots, and explains why Bobby Kennedy was ‘the biggest son of a bitch in politics’

Mary Wakefield | spectator.co.uk | Wednesday, 21st May 2008

To kill time, as I wait for Gore Vidal by the reception desk in Claridge’s, I leaf through the pages of his memoirs, looking at the photographs. One in particular takes my fancy: Gore aged three, in the garden of his grandfather’s house in Washington DC — a dapper little chap in shorts and a smart round-collared shirt, tending what seem to be cabbages. He’s glancing up at the camera half-amused, entirely self-possessed. He’s so unusually composed for a toddler, that I squint at the pic up close, peering at his eyes.

‘Are you waiting for me?’ There on my right, at wheelchair height, are the same eyes, 80 years on. Shaken, I nod. ‘Well then,’ says Gore Vidal, ‘let’s get a drink,’ and wheels off in the direction of the bar, trailing a wake of handsome Italian helpers.

Since that snap in the cabbage patch, Gene Luther Gore Vidal (he dropped the first two names ‘for political and aesthetic reasons’) has lived through (as he puts it) three quarters of the 20th century and about one third of the history of the United States of America. But he hasn’t let the drama just drift by: he’s starred in American history, written the script. He’s partied with JFK, slept with Jack Kerouac, had tea with André Gide; he’s skied with Garbo, swum with Nureyev, travelled with Tennessee Williams and whenever the opportunity has arisen put his nemesis, Truman Capote, in his place.

Gore Vidal’s name crops up everywhere throughout the last half-century; he’s like the subject of ‘Sympathy for the Devil’: ‘Please allow me to introduce myself, I’m a man of wealth and taste, I’ve been around for a long, long time…’ Sympathy for the Vidal, maybe — respect, certainly: as well as all the hob-nobbing with superstars, he’s stood for Congress, written 22 novels, five plays, over 200 essays and has become the most outspoken critic of America’s foreign policy, railing against the ongoing corruption of the once-great republic. (more…)

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By- Suzie-Q @ 8:00 AM MST

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Sudhan @11:08 CET

Twenty-five former U.S. military officers have severely criticized the official account of 9/11 and called for a new investigation. They include former commander of U.S. Army Intelligence, Major General Albert Stubblebine, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, Col. Ronald D. Ray, two former staff members of the Director of the National Security Agency; Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatkowski, PhD, and Major John M. Newman, PhD, and many others. They are among the rapidly growing number of military and intelligence service veterans, scientists, engineers, and architects challenging the government’s story. The officers’ statements appear below, listed alphabetically.

Lt. Col. Robert Bowman, PhD: “A lot of these pieces of information, taken together, prove that the official story, the official conspiracy theory of 9/11 is a bunch of hogwash. It’s impossible,” said Lt. Col. Robert Bowman, PhD, U.S. Air Force (ret). With doctoral degrees in Aeronautics and Nuclear Engineering, Col. Bowman served as Director of Advanced Space Programs Development under Presidents Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter.

“There’s a second group of facts having to do with the cover up,” continued Col. Bowman. “Taken together these things prove that high levels of our government don’t want us to know what happened and who’s responsible. Who gained from 9/11? Who covered up crucial information about 9/11? And who put out the patently false stories about 9/11 in the first place? When you take those three things together, I think the case is pretty clear that it’s highly placed individuals in the administration with all roads passing through Dick Cheney.”

Regarding the failure of NORAD to intercept the four hijacked planes on 9/11, Col. Bowman said, “I’m an old interceptor pilot. I know the drill. I’ve done it. I know how long it takes. I know the rules. … Critics of the government story on 9/11 have said: ‘Well, they knew about this, and they did nothing’. That’s not true. If our government had done nothing that day and let normal procedure be followed, those planes, wherever they were, would have been intercepted, the Twin Towers would still be standing and thousands of dead Americans would still be alive.”

Continued . . .

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