By- Suzie-Q @ 8:40 PM MST
Archive for June 10th, 2008
Posted in Uncategorized on June 10, 2008| Leave a Comment »
Posted in Uncategorized on June 10, 2008| Leave a Comment »
Posted in Uncategorized on June 10, 2008| 2 Comments »
Posted in Uncategorized on June 10, 2008| 1 Comment »
GEF @ 3:48 PM MST
***IT’S GOING TO BE A LOOONNGGGG SUMMER 2008***
MADRID (AFP) – Tens of thousands of truckers in Portugal on Monday stepped up protests against rising fuel prices, causing mayhem on highways and blocking ., and
Huge tailbacks built up around major cities and on the French-Spanish border as French fishermen in Mediterranean ports ended their three-week strike over the spiraling cost of fuel.
Spain’s second largest hauliers’ union Fenadismer, which claims to represent 70,000 out of Spain’s 380,000 truck drivers, launched an open-ended strike on Monday. It said it was “peaceful” but followed “massively”.
Talks Monday between the hauliers and the government ended in failure, Fenadismer said.
“Fenadismer will maintain its national strike” as the government’s proposals were “insufficient”, it said.
Trucks jammed several main highways including at the frontier with France, according to traffic officials, who also reported massive snarls in Madrid and Valencia.
A Spanish truckers’ group calling itself the Platform for the Defence of the Transport Sector, who say they speak for 50,000 truckers, walked off the job last week. They have threatened to disrupt the opening this weekend of the International Exposition in Zaragosa.
The conservative Spanish newspaper ABC said the aim of the strikers was to block oil supplies from refineries and stocks at retail markets this week.
Spanish media said the number of trucks at wholesale markets on Monday were considerably lower than usual.
French truckers struggling with high fuel costs staged fresh protests near the Spanish border and in the southwest.
Several trucks from the southern city of Perpignan disrupted traffic at border posts, preventing trucks from crossing and causing a tailback of some 10 kilometres (six miles) on both sides of the border. Private cars were allowed through.
Protestors branded banners which read: “Trucker = Unemployed,” and “It’s the end of our profession.”
Some 200 trucks converged on the four main motorways leading into Bordeaux Monday morning, causing 30 kilometers (20 miles) of tailbacks in and around the city.
“We are demanding immediate measures” to counter the impact of high fuel prices, said Jean-Pierre Morlin, president of the European trucking organisation for the Aquitaine region.
Portugal’s Transport Minister Mario Lino was to meet later Monday with representatives of road transport associations in a bid to end the strike by truckers who have threatened to “paralyze” the country.
According to police, trucks parked at petrol pumps were stoned overnight or while they were on the road after the strike started at midnight.
Many had their windscreens shattered.
The strikers also blocked entrances to several factories. According to industry figures, there are some 40,000 truckers in Portugal serving an estimated 5,000 firms.
However, French fishermen from Mediterranean ports on Monday ended a three-week strike ahead of a key meeting of European fisheries ministers.
“All of the fleets from the Mediterranean ports went back to work this morning, but we remain very vigilant,” said Ange Natoli, a representative of the Mediterranean fishing fleets.
Fleets in the Channel ports of Boulogne-sur-Mer, Calais and Dunkirk last week called off their strike pending the talks.
Portuguese fishermen called off their five-day-old strike on Wednesday.
However, their counterparts in Spain, home to Europe’s largest fishing fleet, maintained their “indefinite” stoppage launched May 30.
“Almost all the ports in Spain are on strike,” said the head of the Spanish Fisheries Confederation, Javier Garat.
EU fisheries ministers meet on June 23-24 tackle the fuel crisis.
Marine diesel prices have leapt by around 30 percent since the start of 2008, triggering protests in European ports as well as warnings that fishing boat owners face bankruptcy without higher subsidies.
GEF @ 3:18 PM MST
WASHINGTON — Senate Republicans blocked a proposal Tuesday to tax the windfall profits of the largest oil companies, despite pleas by Democratic leaders to use the measure to address America’s anger over $4 a gallon gasoline.
The Democratic energy package would have imposed a tax on any “unreasonable” profits of the five largest U.S. oil companies and given the federal government more power to address oil market speculation that the bill’s supporters argue has added to the crude oil price surge.
“Americans are furious about what’s going on,” declared Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., and want Congress to do something about oil company profits and “an orgy of speculation” on oil markets.
But Republicans argued the Democratic proposal focusing on new oil industry taxes is not the answer to the country’s energy problems.
“The American people are clamoring for relief at the pump,” said Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M., but if taxes are increased on the oil companies “they will get exactly what they don’t want. The bill will raise taxes, increase imports.”
The Democrats failed, 51-43, to get the 60 votes needed to overcome a GOP filibuster and bring the energy package up for consideration.
Separately, Democrats also failed to get Republican support for a proposal to extend tax breaks for wind, solar and other alternative energy development, and for the promotion of energy efficiency and conservation. The tax breaks have either expired or are scheduled to end this year.
The tax provisions were included in a broader $50 billion tax measure blocked by a GOP filibuster threat. A vote to take up the measure was 50-44, short of the 60 votes needed.
The windfall profits bill would have imposed a 25 percent tax on profits over what would be determined “reasonable” when compared to profits several years ago. The oil companies could have avoided the tax if they invested the money in alternative energy projects or refinery expansion. It also would have rescinded oil company tax breaks _ worth $17 billion over the next 10 years _ with the revenue to be used for tax incentives to producers of wind, solar and other alternative energy sources as well as for energy conservation.
The legislation also would:
_Require traders to put up more collateral in the energy futures markets and open the way for federal regulation of traders who are based in the United States but use foreign trading platforms. The measures are designed to reduce market speculation.
_Make oil and gas price gouging a federal crime, with stiff penalties of up to $5 million during a presidentially declared energy emergency.
_Authorize the Justice Department to bring charges of price fixing against countries that belong to the OPEC oil cartel.
Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky has acknowledged that Americans are hurting from the high energy costs but strongly opposes the Democrats’ response and has ridiculed those who “think we can tax our way out of this problem.”
“Republicans by and large believe that the solution to this problem, in part, is to increase domestic production,” McConnell said.
A GOP energy plan, rejected by the Senate last month, calls for opening a coastal strip of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska to oil development and to allow states to opt out of the national moratorium that has been in effect for a quarter century against oil and gas drilling in more than 80 percent of the country’s coastal waters.
by Geezer Power…2:24 pm
The International Peace Operations Association
The International Peace Operations Association (IPOA) is a non-governmental trade and lobbying association representing the “peace and stability industry,” sometimes referred to as private military companies (PMCs) or derogatorily by critics as mercenaries ignoring the international legal definition as well as the actual role and variety of companies. The IPOA is located in Washington DC, USA, and was founded in April 2001 by Doug Brooks, who currently serves as the association’s president. The IPOA currently represents 42 companies which are required to pay dues and submit delegates to various committees within the IPOA. David Hammond, a lawyer who represents many PMCs in court, is the chairman of the general counsel committee. The IPOA also publishes The Journal of International Peace Operations.
According to an article by Corpwatch the IPOA’s aim is to “reposition the industry as for-profit providers of armed men as peace keepers. ” The association’s stated mission is “to promote high operational and ethical standards of firms active in the Peace and Stability Industry; to engage in a constructive dialogue with policy-makers about the growing and positive contribution of these firms to the enhancement of international peace, development, and human security; and to inform the concerned public about the activities and role of the industry.” The IPOA’s Code of Conduct “seeks to ensure the ethical standards of International Peace Operations Association member companies operating in conflict and post-conflict environments so that they may contribute their valuable services for the benefit of international peace and human security.”.
As the Army struggles to meet recruitment numbers, FRONTLINE takes a hard look at private contractors servicing U.S. military supply lines, running U.S. military bases, and protecting U.S. diplomats and generals. Between the logistics giant Halliburton and a myriad of armed security companies, private military contractors comprise the second largest “force” in Iraq, far outnumbering all non-U.S. forces combined. There are as many as 100,000 civilian contractors and approximately 20,000 private security forces.
Posted in Uncategorized on June 10, 2008| 3 Comments »
By- Suzie-Q @ 9:30 AM MST
Congressman Dennis Kucinich Introduced 35 Articles of Impeachment Against President Bush on Monday Night
The full text of the articles is available at:
Congressman Kucinich has laid out an extensive indictment of the president. Here is the index of article titles:
Creating a Secret Propaganda Campaign to Manufacture a False Case for War Against Iraq
Falsely, Systematically, and with Criminal Intent Conflating the Attacks of September 11, 2001, With Misrepresentation of Iraq as a Security Threat as Part of Fraudulent Justification for a War of
Misleading the American People and Members of Congress to Believe Iraq Possessed Weapons of Mass Destruction, to Manufacture a False Case for War
Misleading the American People and Members of Congress to Believe Iraq Posed an Imminent Threat to the United States
Illegally Misspending Funds to Secretly Begin a War of Aggression
Invading Iraq in Violation of the Requirements of HJRes114
Invading Iraq Absent a Declaration of War.
Invading Iraq, A Sovereign Nation, in Violation of the UN Charter
Failing to Provide Troops With Body Armor and Vehicle Armor
Falsifying Accounts of US Troop Deaths and Injuries for Political Purposes
Establishment of Permanent U.S. Military Bases in Iraq
Initiating a War Against Iraq for Control of That Nation’s Natural Resources
Creating a Secret Task Force to Develop Energy and Military Policies With Respect to Iraq and Other Countries
Misprision of a Felony, Misuse and Exposure of Classified Information And Obstruction of Justice in the Matter of Valerie Plame Wilson, Clandestine Agent of the Central Intelligence Agency
Providing Immunity from Prosecution for Criminal Contractors in Iraq
Reckless Misspending and Waste of U.S. Tax Dollars in Connection With Iraq and US Contractors
Illegal Detention: Detaining Indefinitely And Without Charge Persons Both U.S. Citizens and Foreign Captives
Torture: Secretly Authorizing, and Encouraging the Use of Torture Against Captives in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Other Places, as a Matter of Official Policy
Rendition: Kidnapping People and Taking Them Against Their Will to “Black Sites” Located in Other Nations, Including Nations Known to Practice Torture
Misleading Congress and the American People About Threats from Iran, and Supporting Terrorist Organizations Within Iran, With the Goal of Overthrowing the Iranian Government
Creating Secret Laws
Violation of the Posse Comitatus Act
Spying on American Citizens, Without a Court-Ordered Warrant, in Violation of the Law and the Fourth Amendment
Directing Telecommunications Companies to Create an Illegal and Unconstitutional Database of the Private Telephone Numbers and Emails of American Citizens
Announcing the Intent to Violate Laws with Signing Statements
Failing to Comply with Congressional Subpoenas and Instructing Former Employees Not to Comply