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Archive for June 28th, 2008

By- Suzie-Q @ 5:30 PM MST

McCains Defaulted On Home Taxes For Last Four Years, Newsweek To Report

The Huffington Post | June 28, 2008 07:16 PM

Newsweek is set to publish a highly embarrassing report on Sen. John McCain, revealing that the McCains have failed to pay taxes on their beach-front condo in La Jolla, California, for the last four years and are currently in default, The Huffington Post has learned.

Under California law, once a residential property is in default for five years, it can be sold at a tax sale to recover the unpaid taxes for the taxpayers.

The McCains own at least seven homes through a variety of trusts and corporations controlled by Cindy McCain.

McCain campaign scrambling… Developing…

UPDATE: Newsweek’s story is now online. The report notes that the McCains paid the bulk of their back taxes yesterday, but continue to owe additional taxes:

When you’re poor, it can be hard to pay the bills. When you’re rich, it’s hard to keep track of all the bills that need paying. It’s a lesson Cindy McCain learned the hard way when NEWSWEEK raised questions about an overdue property-tax bill on a La Jolla, Calif., property owned by a trust that she oversees. Mrs. McCain is a beer heiress with an estimated $100 million fortune and, along with her husband, she owns at least seven properties, including condos in California and Arizona. […]

Shortly after NEWSWEEK inquired about the matter, the McCain aide e-mailed a receipt dated Friday, June 27, confirming payment by the trust to San Diego County in the amount of $6,744.42. County officials say the trust still owes an additional $1,742 for this year, an amount that is overdue and will go into default July 1. Told of the outstanding $1,742, the aide said: “The trust has paid all bills shown owing as of today and will pay all other bills due.”

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By- Suzie-Q @ 5:00 PM MST

Protesters During Latino Conference Speech (VIDEO)

Huffington Post | June 28, 2008 03:51 PM

McCain gave a speech at the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials’ 25th annual conference today, in an effort to court a key, swing-voting constituency. McCain’s speech, however, was interrupted at least three times by protesters. One protester was particularly vocal, holding up a large pink sign that says ‘McCain equals’ war in Spanish, and shouting “your silence is consent to war crimes” as they escorted her out of the hall. Another protester interrupted the end of McCain’s remarks, and the Senator can be seen holding up his hands in exasperation.

WATCH THE VIDEO

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Bush Declares State Of National Emergency..Read It!

GEF @ 4:08 PM MST

Executive Order: Continuing Certain Restrictions with Respect to North Korea and North Korean Nationals

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.) (NEA), and section 301 of title 3, United States Code,

I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, find that the current existence and risk of the proliferation of weapons-usable fissile material on the Korean Peninsula constitute an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States, and I hereby declare a national emergency to deal with that threat. I further find that, as we deal with that threat through multilateral diplomacy, it is necessary to continue certain restrictions with respect to North Korea that would otherwise be lifted pursuant to a forthcoming proclamation that will terminate the exercise of authorities under the Trading With the Enemy Act (50 U.S.C. App. 1 et seq.) (TWEA) with respect to North Korea.

Read More–>

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By GEF

Looks like Germany’s little treaty broke….

Austrian leader calls for referendum if EU treaty changed

Austria’s chancellor, Alfred Gusenbauer, has said that if any changes are made to the Lisbon Treaty following its rejection by Irish voters earlier this month, then it should be put to a referendum in his country.

“We think any future changes to the treaty that affect Austrian interests must be decided in Austria by a referendum,” Mr Gusenbauer said in an open letter published in tabloid daily Kronen Zeitung.

The mood among the population is too negative, says Mr Gusenbauer (l) (Photo: SPÖ)

“A lot of people are under the impression that the EU is not concerned with their real problems but that it is interested above all in looking after itself.”

The letter was also signed by the president of the Social Democrats, Werner Faymann.

The social democrats are part of the ruling coalition, along with the centre-right Austrian People’s Party, in Austria.

The letter says that if a new-look treaty has to be ratified again in Austria, then the social democrats “want to convince” their coalition partner to take the referendum route.

“There is also in Austria widespread scepticism about the EU at the moment. After the vast majority of Austrians voted in favour of EU membership in 1994, today we see a mood of uncertainty and sometimes also rejection.”

Austria’s parliament has already ratified the treaty, making it one of the 20 national assemblies to have done so.

But Ireland’s rejection of the treaty on 12 June has brought the EU’s institutional woes once more to the fore as all 27 member states have to ratify it for it to come into force.

Plassnik: Big mistake

Since the vote, EU leaders have been wracking their brains over how to get the Lisbon Treaty into place anyway but without giving the impression that Irish vote does not matter.

The most likely course is set to be a second referendum on the document including some special provisos for Ireland, possibly on neutrality and tax issues.

So far there has been little political appetite to re-open negotiations on the document, which is already a result of bitter discussions after the rejection of the EU constitution in 2005.

The move by the leading Social Democrats has already caused strong divisions among the ruling parties.

Foreign minister Ursula Plassnik, from the centre-right, said that the call for a popular vote is just a disguise for an anti-European stance and called it a “big mistake.”

Othmar Karas, the head of Austria’s centre-right in the European Parliament, said that the Social Democrats “have removed themselves from the role of constructive partner in the EU.”

But Hannes Swoboda, vice-president of the Socialists in the EU assembly, told Der Standard newspaper: “It is not possible any other way – it cannot go on like this.”

He suggested that revising the treaty and putting it for parliamentary ratification again would “not get through” as the mood among the population is too negative.

According to Mr Swoboda, similar discussions are being had in Greece and the Netherlands and the Social Democrats’ move would put other member states under pressure to make a such a promise.

Until now, among Austria’s political parties, only the far-right FPOe and BZOe had called for a referendum.

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GEF @ 3:48 PM MST

Bush Cites Enviro Concerns to Curb Solar Development…While Accelerating Oil Drilling

David Sirota at Open Left:

A few weeks back, I wrote a New York Times magazine article about the populist uprising against unbridled oil and gas drilling in the Mountain West. The article highlighted a major theme in my new book, THE UPRISING. In the article, I discussed how the Bush Bureau of Land Management has thrown the principle of environmental caution overboard by opening up a huge amount of federal land to drilling. So it is with more than a little bit absurd to read this New York Times story today:

“Faced with a surge in the number of proposed solar power plants, the federal government has placed a moratorium on new solar projects on public land until it studies their environmental impact, which is expected to take about two years. The Bureau of Land Management says an extensive environmental study is needed to determine how large solar plants might affect millions of acres it oversees in six Western states.”

Do you love it?  We’re facing gas prices that necessitate drilling in environmentally sensitive and heretofore protected land right now, despite absolutely no evidence that it would ease current prices.  Yet the Bush administration sees no dichotomy in insisting that we need to take a slow, measured approach to building solar plants, lest we don’t take into account the long term environmental impact.

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A Brief Reprieve on FISA: What Now?

by Geezer Power…11:17 am


But Why Did 94 House Democrats Change Their Votes on FISA?

June 25th, 2008 by DAMOZEL

In March, , the House passed an amendment that rejected retroactive immunity for telecoms that assisted the NSA in illegal wiretapping. Most of us have wondered what happened to change the minds of 94 Democrats. What happened between June 20 and March 14 to change 94 Democratic hearts and minds?

The answer might well be simple: money. Could it be that simple?

MAPLight.org has published a breakdown of contributions received from Telco PACS by the 94 Dems who experienced the change of heart. [Maplight.org is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, nonpartisan organization based in Berkeley, California. Its search engine at MAPLight.org illuminates the connection between Money And Politics (MAP) via an unprecedented database of campaign contributions and legislative outcomes.’]

Here’s the bottom line:

Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint gave PAC contributions averaging:

$8,359 to each Democrat who changed their position to support immunity for Telcos (94 Dems)
$4,987 to each Democrat who remained opposed to immunity for Telcos (116 Dems)

88 percent of the Dems who changed to supporting immunity (83 Dems
of the 94) received PAC contributions from Verizon, AT&T, or Sprint
during the last three years (Jan. 2005-Mar. 2008). ( MAPLight.org)

Of course the average amount received is a bit misleading. A few of the very prominent Dems who changed their votes took a lot more than $8000. According to this website,

Nancy Pelosi [CA], Speaker of the House, allegedly received $24,500.

Steny Hoyer [MD] allegedly received $29,000.

James Clyburn [SC] allegedly received $29,500.

Rahm Emanuel [IL] allegedly received $28,000.

Frederick Boucher [VA] allegedly received $27,500.

Gregory Meeks [NY] allegedly received $26,000.

A Brief Reprieve on FISA: What Now?

Your cellphone with its GPS receiver is a great way for criminals and all of us to be tracked by the police and whomever else wants to track us with or without a court order. You didn’t use those Civil Liberties anyway! Even on TV they always say on cop shows that they need to read the suspects their Miranda Rights and a warrant is needed before anything is done…BUT…that’s not the case anymore. Anything can be found out about you at any time for any reason without any due process thanks to the Patriot Act.

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McCain Makes Wife-Beating Joke…

By- Suzie-Q @ 7:30 AM MST

McCain Makes Awkward Wife-Beating Joke

June 27, 2008 10:26 AM

In an interview with the Las Vegas Sun, columnist Jon Ralston asked McCain why he didn’t choose Gov. Jim Gibbons (in the middle of a messy divorce) to chair his Nevada campaign:

McCain: I appreciate his support. As you know, the lieutenant governor is our chairman.

Q: Why snub the governor?

McCain: I didn’t mean to snub him. I’ve known the lieutenant governor for 15 years and we’ve been good friends….I didn’t intend to snub him. There are other states where the governor is not the chairman.

Q: Maybe it’s the governor’s approval rating and you are running from him like you are from the president?

McCain: (Chuckling) And I stopped beating my wife just a couple of weeks ago . . .

ABC News’ Jake Tapper notes that McCain’s evasive joke was a poor choice given the context:

Gov. Gibbons last month filed for divorce from his wife Dawn citing incompatibility.

It’s pretty scandalous. The Reno Gazette-Journal recently reported
that one month Gibbons sent 860 text messages to a woman with whom Mrs. Gibbons suspects her husband of stepping out.

Gibbons, you may recall, started his governorship amidst accusations that he assaulted a cocktail waitress named Chrissy Mazzeo three weeks before Election Day. Mazzeo said Gibbons grabbed her in a parking garage and threatened to sexually assault her. Charges were never filed.

Later in the same interview, McCain calls Jimmy Carter “a lousy president.”

Read more of the interview here.

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Vidal: Bush ended US as a republic

anthony @ 15:57 BST

Press TV | Saturday, June 28, 2008

Gore Vidal, US novelist, historian and social critic says the Bush regime has killed all of the constitutional links that made the US a republic.

On early Friday morning Iran time, in an exclusive interview with Press TV, Vidal said that President Bush has rid the country of the Bill of Rights, habeas corpus and the entire legacy of the Magna Carta in the name of war on terror.

He also criticized the House of Representatives for not impeaching President Bush, over a wide array of subjects such as disclosure of CIA agent Valerie Plame’s covert status. Vidal did however single out Rep. Dennis Kuchinich for drawing up articles of impeachment against the president.

Vidal, long strongly critical of the Bush administration, said the administration has both an an explicit and covert expansionist agenda.

In his writings he has made the assessment that for several years, the administration and its associates, many of whom are magnets in the oil and gas industry have had clear aims to control the oil of Central Asia which is to follow on the heels of gaining effective control of the oil of the Persian Gulf–a project that took a new twist with the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1991.

That event inadvertently served as the basis for the neo-conservative American Project for the 21st Century document and policy guideline that has been the hallmark of the Bush-Cheney years.

Regarding the September 11, 2001 attacks, Vidal has written the American intelligence community clearly warned it was coming but the event provided political cover and pretext for the plans that the administration already had in place for invading Iraq–plans that can be traced to the waning days of the first Bush family presidency.

Related Video: Gore Vidal: History of the national security state

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EU Constitution Kingpin: We Will Ignore Referendums

anthony @ 10:52 BST

Admits Lisbon Treaty was intended to confuse public into acceptance

Steve Watson & Paul Watson | Infowars.net | Friday, June 27, 2008

Valéry Giscard d’Estaing, author of the rejected European Constitution, has effectively stated that the votes of citizens in EU member states will have no bearing on the future actions of the European Parliament.

The former President of France has told media that referendums, such as last week’s key Irish vote on the Lisbon Treaty, will simply be ignored by bureaucrats in Brussels as they may hinder the progress of European integration.

A London Telegraph report detailed the EU kingpin’s comments:

“We are evolving towards majority voting because if we stay with unanimity, we will do nothing,” he said.

“It is impossible to function by unanimity with 27 members. This time it’s Ireland; the next time it will be somebody else.”

“Ireland is one per cent of the EU”. (more…)

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