Archive for December 1st, 2008

Holder: I’m No Gonzo — And I’ll Go After Corporate Crime

Earlier we noted that, in speaking this morning about Eric Holder, his pick for Attorney General, Barack Obama seemed to go out of his way to suggest that Holder would reverse the politicization of DOJ that we saw under President Bush and Alberto Gonzales.

Holder’s own remarks backed up that notion. He said:

It is incumbent upon those of us who lead the Department to ensure not only that the nation is safe but also that our laws and traditions are respected. There is not a tension between those two. We can and we must ensure that the American people remain secure and that the great constitutional guarantees that define us as a nation are truly valued. For example, working with Republicans and Democrats in Congress, should I be confirmed, we look forward to actually structuring policies that are both protective and consistent with who we are as a nation.

And Holder included an interesting hint suggesting that he may be more aggressive than his predecessors under Bush in going after corporate malfeasance — specifically, one would assume, in regard to the current financial crisis:

National security concerns are not defined only by the challenges created by terrorists abroad, but also by criminals in our midst, whether they be criminals located on the street or in a boardroom.

Holder’s full remarks follow after the jump…


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Dow Plunges 680 Points as Recession Is Declared

MICHAEL M. GRYNBAUM | nytimes.com | December 1, 2008


The evidence of a recession has been widespread for months: slower production, stagnant wages and hundreds of thousands of lost jobs.

But the nonpartisan National Bureau of Economic Research, charged with making the call for the history books, waited until now to make it official — and the announcement came on a day when the American stock market fell nearly 9 percent in a single session. (more…)

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US prepares for “continuity of government”

Think Again: The Invisible Battle Over Posse Comitatus

A largely silent battle has been fought over the president’s ability to deploy military troops in the United States. Overturning longstanding statues limiting this ability has implications for martial law.

Lo and behold, President Bush has done just this, deploying an entire brigade from Iraq for domestic activities inside the United States. The 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team has, since October 1st, been under the day-to-day control of U.S. Army North, the Army service component of Northern Command, as an on-call federal response force. Yet the mainstream media has raised nary an eyebrow at this striking expansion of presidential power taken in defiance of centuries of legal precedent—yet another in a series so large as to defy calculation.

Source: americanprogress.org

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Impeachment spot to run in California

Raw Story- David Edwards and Diane Sweet
Published: Monday December 1, 2008

The National Impeachment Network is planning to run an advertisement on California television during the months of December and January 2009 which advocates for the impeachment of President George W. Bush.

Headed by Ralph Lopez, diarist at the left-leaning Daily Kos, the National Impeachment Network is supported by grassroots groups such as Code Pink, Veterans for Peace and Republicans for Impeachment.

From the network’s website:

“Ralph Lopez at the National Impeachment Network has created this ad for television, a version of which has already run in Vermont on Fox News, MSNBC, CNN Headlines, and other stations. We are going over the heads of congressmen and appealing directly to their constituents in order to generate pressure for impeachment. Impeachment can be accomplished in three days with single article like refusing to obey congressional subpoenas. In an up-or-down vote before the entire Congress, even Republicans who are not part of the rabid right will start hearing from their constituents to impeach. Bush has no friends left, and he shouldn’t. They can do it. And the future of democracy will be that much more secure, with his unprecedented law-breaking firmly punished.”

The ad features images of flag-draped caskets and grieving military families, along with George W. Bush addressing the crowd before an annual Correspondent’s Club dinner with now infamous jokes about not being able to find weapons of mass destruction. It also includes a clip of author and former Deputy District Attorney of Los Angeles County Vincent Bugliosi’s congressional testimony regarding the absence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

The ad encourages California citizens to contact their representatives in Washington to demand impeachment of the President.

The ad, as prepared for broadcast, follows.

This video is from YouTube / National Impeachment Network, broadcast Nov. 28, 2008.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

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Bush: Sorry About Financial Crisis

Bush: “I’m Sorry” About The Economic Crisis

DEB RIECHMANN | December 1, 2008 12:59 PM EST | AP

WASHINGTON — President George W. Bush expressed remorse that the global financial crisis has cost jobs and harmed retirement accounts and said he’ll back more government intervention if needed to ease the recession.

“I’m sorry it’s happening, of course,” Bush said in a wide-ranging interview with ABC’s “World News,” which was airing Monday. “Obviously I don’t like the idea of people losing jobs, or being worried about their 401(k)s. On the other hand, the American people got to know that we will safeguard the system. I mean, we’re in. And if we need to be in more, we will.”

The U.S. economy fell into a recession in December 2007, the National Bureau of Economic Research reported on Monday. Many economists believe the current downturn will last until the middle of 2009 and will be the most severe slump since the 1981-82 recession.

Bush said he felt responsible for the economic downturn because it’s occurring on his watch, but he added: “I think when the history of this period is written, people will realize a lot of the decisions that were made on Wall Street took place over a decade or so” before he became president.

He said he would like to see “instant liquidity” in the markets given the extent of the financial rescue plan, yet he understands that fear has paralyzed the markets.


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Bush: “I think I Was Unprepared For War”

President Bush tells ABC News Charlie Gibson that he stayed true to his principles and values throughout his presidency. (AP Photo)

President Bush tells ABC News' Charlie Gibson that he stayed true to his principles and values throughout his presidency. (AP Photo)

Bush: ‘I Did Not Compromise My Principles’

President George W. Bush Says He Will Leave Office With ‘Head Held High’


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Obama Introduces Clinton, National Security Team

Huffington Post/AP |   December 1, 2008 09:27 AM

President-elect Barack Obama announced Monday that Robert Gates would remain as defense secretary, making President Bush’s Pentagon chief his own as he seeks to wind down the U.S. role in Iraq. Obama picked former campaign rival Hillary Rodham Clinton as secretary of state.

At a news conference, Obama also introduced his picks of retired Marine Gen. James Jones as White House national security adviser, former Justice Department official Eric Holder as attorney general, Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano as secretary of homeland security, and Susan Rice as UN Ambassador.


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Afternoon Jukebox… The Passenger

Iggy Pop- The Passenger

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From Headzup Nov. 28, 2008.

President Bush talks about how he’s very pleased with the Iraq war.

Read more about it here–Bush “very pleased” with Iraq war outcome: report.

(H/t- C & L)

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Obama trying to avoid picking intel officials associated with Bush’s policies

Think Progress- By Faiz Shakir at 10:30 am

The Wall Street Journal reports that Obama is “moving more slowly on his intelligence picks in an attempt to find experienced officials who aren’t associated with the Bush administration’s controversial interrogation policies.” After former CIA official John Brennan withdrew his name from consideration due to his prior support for key Bush policies, retired Navy Adm. Dennis Blair emerged as a front-runner, though the decision hadn’t been finalized. “Blair is free of any association with two of the intelligence community’s most controversial issues: the CIA’s harsh interrogations of terrorism suspects and the National Security Agency’s warrantless wiretapping program.”

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