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Archive for June 27th, 2008

GEF @ 5:08 PM MST

You really can’t make this stuff up if you tried… LOL! 😉


Quote of the Day: Vice President Is a “Barnacle” on the Legislative Branch

Between David Addington failing to submit testimony, and John Yoo forgetting his words, not a whole lot was cleared up by the House Judiciary Committee’s hearing on interrogation techniques at Guantanamo Bay.

But on the bright side Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN), did manage to clarify a very important question. Just what branch of government is the Vice President in?

Cohen: Mr. Addington, what branch are we in?Addington: Ah, sir, perhaps the best that can be said is that the Vice President belongs neither to the executive nor to the legislative branch, but is attached by the Constitution to the latter. That’s from two legal opinions issued by the office of legal counsel to the Department of Justice dated March 9th, 1961, and April, I believe, it’s 18th, 1961 by, I believe, Mr. Katzenbach if I remember. . .

Cohen: So he’s a member of the legislative branch?

(cross talk)

Addington: No. I said attached by the Constitution to the latter. He is not a member of the legislative branch because the Constitution says that the Congress consists of a Senate and a House of Representatives. The Constitution further says that the Senate consists of Senators and the House of Representatives consists of Representatives and he is neither a Senator nor a Representative.

Cohen: But he is attached to the legislative branch?

Addington: That’s the quote I read you.

Cohen: So he’s kind of a barnacle.

(voice off camera): Kind of a what?!

Addington: He is attached. . . the word was attached by the Constitution to the latter. I don’t consider the Constitution as a barnacle, Mr. Cohen.

Cohen: No, the Vice President. Since he’s really not fish or fowl, he’s just attached to something.

But don’t take our word for it:

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The Smiling Rictus of Death

Posted by Basheert @3:06pm

Courtesy of Think Progress

As a consitutent of Pig McSame, good old grampy, I would like everyone to read the last line of this post. Grampy McSane, the smiling rictus of death, has not bothered to haul his aged ass into the Senate and vote since April 8th. He has consistently throughout his career voted AGAINST VETERANS although lately he is best noted by his complete absence from the Senate!!! This is what Pig McBush considers “representing his constituents”. Although the mere sight of this ancient creature with the yellow teeth sends me into spasms of cringing – I believe it is important to realize this idiot skipped yet another vote to go eat Chili. Somehow I think Cindy McStepfordWife skipped the victuals.

After Trying To Steal Credit For Webb’s GI Bill, McCain Skips The Vote And Instead Chows Down On Chili In Ohio»

Earlier this month, House leaders struck a deal to push forward with Sen. Jim Webb’s (D-VA) GI Bill, which expanded generous educational benefits for veterans. The House deal also included a provision allowing troops to transfer the benefits to family members.

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) was one of the most vocal opponents of Webb’s bill, claiming it was too generous and would lead to a drop in military retention. Yet when the House deal was announced, McCain tried to take credit for it:

With the addition of the transferability provisions sought by Senators Graham, Burr, myself and others to give service members the right to transfer earned G.I. Bill benefits to spouses and children, we will have achieved in offering vastly improved educational benefit.

As if trying to steal credit for Webb’s GI Bill wasn’t bad enough, McCain yesterday skipped the Senate vote on the legislation, which passed 92-6. The only other senator not present for the vote was Ted Kennedy (D-MA), who is battling a brain tumor.

What was McCain doing instead yesterday? In addition to holding a town hall meeting at Xavier University in Cincinnati, he also took some time to chow down at Skyline Chili:

mccainchili45.gifMcCain has not voted in the Senate since April 8 and has missed 367 votes (61.4 percent) during the current Congress.

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Conyers Has Subpoenaed DOJ For Scandal Documents

By- Suzie-Q @ 2:05 PM MST

Conyers subpoenas DoJ for scandal documents

Think Progress

By Matt at 4:30 pm

House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-MI) issued a subpoena today to the Department of Justice for documents related to a variety of Bush administration scandals, including the Valerie Plame leak investigation, the U.S attorney scandal, the politicization of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, and the prosecution of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman. Read the full subpoena here.

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The absolute Brilliance of Kos!!!

Posted by Basheert @ 12:30pm – Courtesy of Dailykos

The conservative mind

Fri Jun 27, 2008 at 10:05:31 AM PDT

Bowers:

It must be really scary to be a conservative. To be one, you must live in constant fear of terrorists nuking the United States, of gay people on the verge of convincing you that you really enjoy sodomy, of Spanish becoming the official language of the United States next week, of every African-American voting seven or eight times in the next election, of radical Islam suddenly becoming the latest hip thing among kids across the country, of perpetual lesbian orgies in girls bathrooms in high schools across America, of liberals forcing everyone to become a vegan, of Christians being rounded up into concentration camps, and of Democrats outlawing private property if they were to ever take power again.

They do live in a state of fear, and what’s more, they want everyone else to join them hiding under their bed, in their pool of urine.

Oh, they’ll talk tough. They’ll bluster and pound their chests like the neanderthals they are.

But inside, they are scared little children, terrified of the world, of people not like them, of change.

And they can’t fathom any other way to live.

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Republican Hypocrisy at it’s finest

Posted by Basheert @12:30pm – Courtesy of Think Progress

Sens. Craig and Vitter team up to co-sponsor Marriage Protection Amendment.»

Larry Craig and David Vitter — “two United States Senators implicated in extramarital sexual activity” — have named themselves as co-sponsors of S.J. Res. 43, the Marriage Protection Amendment. If passed, the bill would amend the Constitution to declare that marriage “shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman.”

vittercraig.jpg

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FISA Bill Delayed By Feingold Objections

By- Suzie-Q @ 12:05 PM MST

Objections by Feingold delay FISA

Think Progress

By Amanda on Jun 26th, 2008 at 5:57 pm

The Hill reports that because of Sen. Russ Feingold’s (D-WI) objections to legislation overhauling the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), Senate leaders have decided to push back consideration of the bill until after the Independence Day recess. Feingold, along with several other lawmakers, are fighting against granting immunity to telecomms that participated in the Bush administration’s illegal spying program.

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Afternoon Jukebox… You Never Can Tell

By- Suzie-Q @ 12:00 PM MST

Good Afternoon Justice Bloggers:

Have a great and safe weekend..  🙂

S-Q

Chuck Berry- You Never Can Tell (Dance Scene From Pulp Fiction)

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The Nuclear Expert Who Never Was

anthony @ 17:32 BST

Scott Ritter | Truthdig | June 26, 2008

I am a former U.N. weapons inspector. I started my work with the United Nations in September 1991, and between that date and my resignation in August 1998, I participated in over 30 inspections, 14 as chief inspector. The United Nations Special Commission, or UNSCOM, was the organization mandated by the Security Council with the implementation of its resolutions requiring Iraq to be disarmed of its weapons-of-mass-destruction capabilities. While UNSCOM oversaw the areas of chemical and biological weapons, and ballistic missiles, it shared the nuclear file with the International Atomic Energy Agency, or IAEA. As such, UNSCOM, through a small cell of nuclear experts on loan from the various national weapons laboratories, would coordinate with the nuclear safeguards inspectors from the IAEA, organized into an “Action Team” dedicated to the Iraq nuclear disarmament problem. UNSCOM maintained political control of the process, insofar as its executive chairman was the only one authorized to approve a given inspection mission. At first, the IAEA and UNSCOM shared the technical oversight of the inspection process, but soon this was transferred completely to the IAEA’s Action Team, and UNSCOM’s nuclear staff assumed more of an advisory and liaison function. (more…)

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Kucinich: ‘We went to war for the oil companies’

anthony @ 17:23 BST

Nick Juliano | Raw Story | Friday, June 27, 2008

Rep. Dennis Kucinich, who has introduced measures to impeach George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, said Thursday that oil executives who secretly met with the vice president in 2001 should be held criminally liable for pushing an illegal war.

“In March of 2001, when the Bush Administration began to have secret meetings with oil company executives from Exxon, Shell and BP, spreading maps of Iraq oil fields before them, the price of oil was $23.96 per barrel. Then there were 63 companies in 30 countries, other than the US, competing for oil contracts with Iraq,” the Ohio Democrat said during a speech on the House floor.

“Today the price of oil is $135.59 per barrel, the US Army is occupying Iraq and the first Iraq oil contracts will go, without competitive bidding to, surprise, (among a very few others) Exxon, Shell and BP.”

The New York Times reported last week that those companies, Chevron, Total and some smaller companies were set to receive no-bid contracts from Iraq’s Oil Ministry. According to the paper, such deals “are unusual for the industry,” and the companies prevailed over more than 40 others, including some from Russia, China and India. (more…)

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By- Suzie-Q @ 9:00 AM MST

The Pornography of Power: How Defense Hawks Hijacked 9/11 and Weakened America

By Robert Scheer, Twelve. Posted June 27, 2008

The huge “defense” spending going on in our name is irrational and costly, but there are powerful vested interests that want to keep it that way.

The following is an excerpt from Robert Scheer’s new book, The Pornography of Power: How Defense Hawks Hijacked 9/11 and Weakened America (Twelve, 2008).

War doesn’t pay, nor does imperial ambition. That should be self-evident to anyone who has paid attention to the successful trajectory of the American experience, both politically and commercially, since the Republic’s founding. It is a statement neither liberal nor conservative in orientation, and until recently it would have been accepted as a commonsense proposition by leading politicians of both political parties.

Although some leaders took us to war, they always claimed to do so reluctantly, as is reflected in the doubts expressed in their memoirs and those of their closest confidants. Lyndon Johnson, musing about the indefensibility of sacrificing even a single young American to die in Vietnam but sacrificing 59,000 of them in order to emerge victorious in his forthcoming election battle with Barry Goldwater, is all too typical. What that evidence reveals is just how intense is the political pressure to reject common sense when the specter of an enemy is raised. Those pressures have always been with us, and to the extent that they derive from national insecurities, political demagogues, economic avarice, overzealous patriotism, and religious or ideological fervor, they are a constant of the human experience in just about any given society.

The amazing thing about the American political experiment is that our system is the one most consciously designed to limit those risks of foreign military adventure, and for most of our history, it has worked out quite well. I don’t intend to minimize the expansionist, indeed rapacious conquest of our own continent, or the occasional colonial adventures abroad, as in the Philippines and other outposts from Hawaii to Alaska, but in the main, with few lapses, the public remained properly suspicious of its leaders’ intentions. The dominant assumption was the importance of avoiding foreign “entanglements,” to use Thomas Jefferson’s words of warning about the risks of intervening in the affairs of others. Indeed, that policy of nonintervention was thought by our nation’s founders to be a basic demarcation between the politics of the old and new worlds.

By nonintervention, they did not intend indifference to events in the outside world or a narrow protectionist view of trade accompanied by a fortress American military posture. Such a stance, often described as isolationism, obviously is not only out of joint with our current, highly interconnected world, but it didn’t make sense at the time of the nation’s founding, even when the distance of oceans afforded far more secure borders than today. What nonintervention meant, as was commonly understood even on the tavern bar level, was don’t go sticking your nose into other people’s business, and certainly don’t pick fights that you can’t finish. That is a posture that has nothing to do with limiting charitable concern for others beyond your borders, missionary work abroad, humanitarian aid, and everything to do with avoiding the military expeditions that bankrupted the most pretentious and at times successful of empires. Not being like those empires was a driving force in the thinking of the nation’s founders, who were in wide agreement on extreme caution as to military intervention.

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