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Archive for September 3rd, 2008

By- Suzie-Q @ 9:00 PM MST

(h/t Meaningful Distraction)

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DOJ OIG Report: Gonzales Perjury?

By- Suzie-Q @ 7:45 PM MST


Report May Indicate Gonzales Perjury

TPM Muckraker- By Kate Klonick – September 3, 2008, 1:31PM

We noted yesterday that the Justice Department Office of the Inspector General issued a report on the found that former Attorney Gen. Alberto Gonzales had mishandled classified documents during his time in office — and that the DOJ had decided not to press charges.

But that doesn’t seem to be half as bad as what CQ Politics‘ Jeff Stein dug up — fact checking Gonzales’ testimony to investigators with . . . well, the report’s own stipulated facts.

From CQ Politics’ SpyTalk:

But the IG report shows that Gonzales did more than “mishandle” his notes, which included operational details on what he himself, somewhat ironically, called — after it had leaked — “one of the most highly protected [programs] in the United States … a very, very secretive, protected program,” and correspondence between congressional Intelligence Committee leaders and CIA chief Gen. Michael Hayden.In a statement that doesn’t pass the laugh test, Gonzales told IG investigators he didn’t know the documents were secret.

Gonzales said that he was unaware of the classification level and compartmented nature of the NSA program he referenced in the notes. Gonzales also stated he did not recall thinking that the notes themselves were classified.

But the IG found the smoking gun — in Gonzales’s hand, no less.

The envelope containing documents related to the NSA surveillance program bore the handwritten markings, “TOP SECRET – EYES ONLY – ARG” [the attorney general’s initials] followed by an abbreviation for the SCI codeword for the program.

Inside the envelope, moreover, were “documents relating to a detainee interrogation program,” which were all classified with cover sheets and markings in the top and bottom margins, as Top Secret/Sensitive Classified Information.

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A New Generation Calling Out and Exposing Injustice!

GEF @ 9:48 PM ET

Eight RNC Protesters Face State Terrorism Charges

By: Lindsay Beyerstein via: Firedoglake

Eight protesters arrested during the RNC have been charged under Minnesota’s 2002 version of the PATRIOT Act. They eight defendents were charged with “conspiracy to riot in furtherance of terrorism,” according to a dispatch published this afternoon by Twin Cities IndyMedia:

Affidavits released by law enforcement which were filed in support of the search warrants used in raids over the weekend, and used to support probable cause for the arrest warrants, are based on paid, confidential informants who infiltrated the RNCWC on behalf of law enforcement. They allege that members of the group sought to kidnap delegates to the RNC, assault police officers with firebombs and explosives, and sabotage airports in St. Paul.

Evidence released to date does not corroborate these allegations with physical evidence or provide any other evidence for these allegations than the claims of the informants. Based on past abuses of such informants by law enforcement, the National Lawyers Guild is concerned that such police informants have incentives to lie and exaggerate threats of violence and to also act as provacateurs in raising and urging support for acts of violence.

“These charges are an effort to equate publicly stated plans to blockade traffic and disrupt the RNC as being the same as acts of terrorism. This both trivializes real violence and attempts to place the stated political views of the Defendants on trial,” said Bruce Nestor, President of the Minnesota Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild. “The charges represent an abuse of the criminal justice system and seek to intimidate any person organizing large scale public demonstrations potentially involving civil disobedience, he said.”

The criminal complaint doesn’t allege than any of the defendants committed, or attempted to commit, any of the notional crimes mentioned by the paid informants. This is the first time that criminal charges have been brought under the 2002 law.

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National Enquirer Reporting Sarah Palin Adultery

By- Suzie-Q @ 3:00 PM MST

UPDATE:

9/24/08- NATIONAL ENQUIRER HAS NOW REPORTED WHO SARAH PALIN’S LOVER IS:

CLICK HERE FOR THE UPDATE

Yet ANOTHER Palin scandal: Via NRO, Enquirer reporting Palin Adultery

Wed Sep 03, 2008 at 02:40:21 PM PDT

I really have zero problem passing this on since Byron York’s coif brought it up:

Another incredible allegation emerging from the family war is that Palin, a mother of five, had an affair with a former business associate of her fisherman husband, Todd.

“Todd discovered the affair and quickly dissolved his friendship and his business associations with the guy,” charges an enemy. “Many people in Alaska are talking about the rumor and say Todd swept it under the rug.”

The ugly family feud stems from a three-year battle between the 44-year-old governor and her former brother-in-law, state trooper Mike Wooten.

“Sarah has many enemies in her hometown – but a lot of them are in her own extended family,” a source close to the Palin family told The Enquirer.

Family members loyal to Wooten are now waging a campaign to drag Palin’s reputation through the mud.

Oh boy

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Afternoon Jukebox… What Goes Around

By- Suzie-Q @ 2:55 PM MST

Justin Timberlake- What Goes Around (Grammys 2007)

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By- Suzie-Q @ 2:15 PM MST

Peggy Noonan, Mike Murphy Caught On Tape Disparaging Palin Choice: “It’s Over,” “Political Bullshit,” “Gimmicky”

Huffington Post |   September 3, 2008 04:35 PM

Wall Street Journal columnist and former Reagan speechwriter Peggy Noonan and former John McCain adviser, Time columnist, and MSNBC contributor Mike Murphy were caught on tape disparaging John McCain’s selection of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as his Vice Presidential running mate.

“It’s over,” Noonan said.

When Chuck Todd asked her if this was the most qualified woman the Republicans could nominate, Noonan responded, “The most qualified? No. I think they went for this political bullshit about narratives. Every time the Republicans do that, because that’s not where they live and that’s not what they’re good at, they blow it.”

Murphy characterized the choices as “cynical” and “gimmicky.”

Watch (the dialogue in question starts 38 seconds in):

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Mainstream Media Ignores Reports Of Large RNC Protests!

GEF @ 4:08 PM ET

Via: Thinkprogress

Mayor, media silent on FBI raids of journalists and protesters at RNC.

This weekend, Salon’s Glen Greenwald reported that protesters in Minneapolis in town for the Republican National Convention have been targeted by a series of police raids “involving teams of 25-30 officers in riot gear, with semi-automatic weapons drawn, entering homes of those suspected of planning protests, handcuffing and forcing them to lay on the floor, while law enforcement officers searched the homes, seizing computers, journals, and political pamphlets.”

protesters1.jpgSo far, nearly 300 protesters and journalists have been arrested, but St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman has stayed silent. Click HERE to add your name to the 35,000 already on a letter to Coleman condemning the arrests and demanding the charges against journalists be dropped.

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By- Suzie-Q @ 1:00 PM MST

Levi Johnston And Track Palin Join Family In St. Paul (VIDEO)

Huffington Post |   September 3, 2008 01:15 PM

Hours ahead of Sarah Palin’s big speech at the RNC, the Palin family met the McCain family as they arrived at the airport. Visible in the live shots on MSNBC taken at the airport appear to be two new campaign faces: Palin’s older son Track, who is in the Army and is likely the gentleman with close-cropped hair, and daughter Bristol’s boyfriend Levi Johnston, with whom she expects a child later this year. The pair were holding hands on the tarmac. Also getting off the plane for the family affair were McCain’s kids Bridget and Meghan.

WATCH VIDEO

Plus more new Levi Johnston photos

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McCain’s AIP Defense Raises More Questions??

By- Suzie-Q @ 12:30 PM MST

McCain’s AIP Defense Raises More Questions

Wed Sep 03, 2008 at 08:35:31 AM PDT

“The fires of hell are frozen glaciers compared to my hatred for the American government…and I won’t be buried under their damn flag.” – Joe Vogler, Founder of the Alaskan Independence Party (AIP)

In the wake of claims by AIP officials that McCain’s VP pick was “an AIP member” in the early 1990s (see background here, here, here, here and here), the McCain campaign–realizing that having Sarah Palin tied to a secessionist group probably isn’t going to win over voters–has gone on the defensive.

As part of their push to prove that McCain’s candidate doesn’t have ties to the radical AIP, they released Sarah Palin’s voter registration records (PDF)since 1982. And yes, those records confirm that she has been a registered Republican since that time. And at about the same time the McCain released those records, Lynette Clark, one of the AIP officers who stated that Palin was a “member”, retracted her statement.

But as the McCain camp was trying to stamp out one fire, another one flared up yesterday, as we learned that Sarah Palin’s husband, Todd Palin, currently registered as “undeclared,” was indeed an official member of the Alaskan Independence Party from October 1995 through July 2002 (except for a few months in 2000).

No comment yet from the McCain campaign explaining why the “First Dude,” as Sarah Palin calls him, was registered with a party whose goal is, among other things, to hold a vote on whether Alaska should secede from the Union.

The McCain campaign’s feverish attempts to blot out any questions regarding Sarah Palin’s ties to AIP however yield more questions than answers. While the records they provided demonstrate that Palin was officially a Republican Party member, there is no evidence provided by the McCain campaign that explains just why McCain’s VP pick spoke to the AIP Convention on multiple occasions, and why longtime members of the AIP viewed her association with that party to be such that they thought she was “an AIP member.”

The McCain campaign, trying to swiftly bury this under the rug as Palin is set to take the stage tonight, claims that Palin never attended the group’s 1994 convention.  But they did reveal that she did attend their 2000 Convention, as a “courtesy.” Attending a separatist convention out of courtesy? More on that later today.

But while admitting that she attended the 2000 Convention, the McCain campaign vehemently denies that she attended the convention in 1994, as was initially reported.

But as Jake Tapper over at ABC News reports, witnesses who were there say that McCain’s defense simply isn’t true. Not only has Lynette Clark not retracted her statement regarding Palin’s attendance at the AIP’s 1994 Convention, but that statement is now corroborated by another former AIP official:

Mark Chryson, chairman of the AIP from 1995 to 2002 — tells ABC News that “Palin was at the convention in 1994. She was there.”

The McCain campaign may have hoped that the release of voter registration records would put an end to these inquiries, but those records fail to explain away the following:

  • Palin’s confirmed attendance at the AIP’s 1994 Convention
  • Her confirmed attendance at the AIP’s 2000 Convention
  • Her videotaped address to the AIP Convention in 2008, and
  • Her husband’s almost decade-long membership in the organization.

As this story continues to develop, one thing remains clear: an 11-page PDF isn’t going to make these questions go away.

(h/t to JedReport for the image).

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Biden Sharply Criticized Bush Administration

By- Suzie-Q @ 12:00 PM MST

Biden Rips Bush Administration

ABC News- Political Radar

September 03, 2008 7:19 AM

ABC News’ Matthew Jaffe reports: While Republicans congregate in the Twin Cities striving to keep their hold on the White House, Barack Obama’s running mate Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., sharply criticized the Bush administration Tuesday while delineating the changes Democrats would demand if they rise to power.

“In an Obama-Biden administration, we will not have an attorney general who blatantly breaks the law,” Biden said at a town-hall meeting in West Palm Beach, Florida, his voice at times drowned out by applause. “We will not have a president who doesn’t understand the Constitution. And I will not be a vice-president who thinks he’s not part of any of the three branches of government.”

Biden ripped the Bush administration for wasting a chance to unite the nation in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks.

“George Bush and his administration are going to be judged harshly by history,” said the Delaware lawmaker. “Not for the mistakes they made, but for the opportunities to unite America and the world they squandered.”

Now, Biden said, he and Obama are determined to take control of the West Wing, noting that he would not have agreed to share the Democratic ticket had he not known Obama’s commitment to sticking to his values.

“Have you figured out what is worth losing over?” he said. “Because if you have not, it’s just raw ambition. Barack understands what is worth losing over.”

Earlier Monday, addressing a crowd in Deerfield Beach, Florida, Biden preached the importance of this election in terms of the Supreme Court, noting that the next administration might appoint as many as three new justices.

“The single most important domestic decision that a president gets to make on his own or her own is the Supreme Court,” he said.

Looking to the future but with one eye on the past, Biden also promised that an Obama-Biden government would go through Bush administration data with “a fine-toothed comb” and pursue criminal charges if necessary.

“If there has been a basis upon which you can pursue someone for a criminal violation,” he said, “they will be pursued, not out of vengeance, not out of retribution – out of the need to preserve the notion that no one, no one, no attorney general, no president, no one is above the law.”

On Tuesday, the vice presidential nominee continued his 48-hour swing through the Sunshine State with stops in Ft. Myers and Sarasota.

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