Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Gephardt expresses doubt behind closed doors

It seems that Dick Gephardt's private comments don't match up with his public ones;
During a private meeting in San Francisco last week, former Rep. Dick Gephardt (D-Mo.) expressed doubt that Democrats will win control of the House this fall, according to knowledgeable sources.

Gephardt’s remarks about the upcoming election, delivered to a group of investment analysts last Tuesday in the district of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), run counter to the predictions of some of his former colleagues who now occupy powerful positions in the Democratic leadership.

Katrina: The Media's Worst Hour

Only they would have you believe it was Bush's worst hour;
And yet, an ubiquitous media chorus claims simultaneously that Katrina was Bush’s worst hour and the press’s best. That faultless paragon of media scrupulousness Dan Rather proclaimed it one of the “quintessential great moments in television news.” Christiane Amanpour explained, “I think what’s interesting is that it took a Katrina, you know, to bring us back to where we belong. In other words, real journalists, real journalism, and I think that’s a good thing.”

But in the race to prove the federal response incompetent, the “real journalists” missed some important details. As Lou Dolinar exhaustively documents, the National Guard did amazing work in New Orleans. From the Superdome, the Guard managed some 2,500 troops, a dozen emergency shelters, more than 200 boats, 150 helicopters (which flew more than 10,000 sorties moving 88,181 passengers, 18,834 tons of cargo, and saved 17,411 survivors), and an enormous M*A*S*H operation that, among other things, delivered seven babies.

Also left out of the conventional tale of Katrina is the fact that the hurricane hardly singled out New Orleans. Obviously, the flooding there was worse because of the levee breaks. But, as Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour noted, the people of his state and Alabama and Florida have the same federal government. And despite awesome destruction, they managed to do okay.

None of this is to say that the federal government and the Bush administration didn’t make mistakes. But, if we’re looking for poster children for arrogant incompetence in response to Katrina, there are better candidates than George W. Bush.

Monday, May 22, 2006

"...as if the FBI is watching."

Hah! I guess they were!
Rep. William J. Jefferson (D-La.), the target of a 14-month public corruption probe, was videotaped accepting $100,000 in $100 bills from a Northern Virginia investor who was wearing an FBI wire, according to a search warrant affidavit released yesterday.

A few days later, on Aug. 3, 2005, FBI agents raided Jefferson's home in Northeast Washington and found $90,000 of the cash in the freezer, in $10,000 increments wrapped in aluminum foil and stuffed inside frozen-food containers, the document said.

Friday, May 19, 2006

The value of non-leaked intelligence

Thank goodness the NY Times didn't get a hold of this information or they would have printed the story with the "need to know" excuse;
Plot to down El Al jet in Geneva foiled
By JPOST.COM STAFF

A terrorist plot to blow up an El Al jet at Geneva airport with an RPG (rocket propelled grenade) in December was uncovered by the Swiss and French intelligence agencies, details released for publication on Friday revealed.

The Yedioth Aharonot newspaper reported that a secret agent working undercover amongst an Islamic terror cell in the city discovered the plan after three immigrants of Arabic origin boasted of their attempts to smuggle weapons from Russia with the ultimate goal of shooting down an Israeli plane at the airport.

A leak the NY Times decided NOT to print...

And who knows, if true, it could have saved 3000 lives! Judith Miller says;
“But I did manage to have a conversation with a source that [July Fourth 2001] weekend. The person told me that there was some concern about an intercept that had been picked up. The incident that had gotten everyone’s attention was a conversation between two members of Al Qaeda. And they had been talking to one another, supposedly expressing disappointment that the United States had not chosen to retaliate more seriously against what had happened to the Cole. And one Al Qaeda operative was overheard saying to the other, ‘Don’t worry; we’re planning something so big now that the US will have to respond.’

“And I was obviously floored by that information. I thought it was a very good story: (1) the source was impeccable; (2) the information was specific, tying Al Qaeda operatives to, at least, knowledge of the attack of the Cole; and (3) they were warning that something big was coming, to which the United States would have to respond. This struck me as a major Page One-potential story.

“I remember going back to work in New York the next day and meeting with my editor Stephen Engelberg. I was rather excited, as I usually get about information of this kind, and I said, ‘Steve, I think we have a great story. And the story is that two members of Al Qaeda overheard on an intercept (and I assumed that it was the National Security Agency, because that’s who does these things) were heard complaining about the lack of American response to the Cole, but also… contemplating what would happen the next time, when there was, as they said, the impending major attack that was being planned. They said this was such a big attack that the US would have to respond.’ Then I waited....

As Steve put it to me, ‘You have a great first and second paragraph. What’s your third?”’

Say what?

The madness continues...

So now not only will illegal immigrants be rewarded for breaking the law with citizenship now they will be entitled to Social Security with the illegally obtained Social Security cards

Brilliant!

The Senate voted yesterday to allow illegal aliens to collect Social Security benefits based on past illegal employment -- even if the job was obtained through forged or stolen documents.

Harry Reid is an idiot!

MR. REID: { NOT AN OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPT }
DISTINGUISHED FRIEND, THE SENATOR FROM OKLAHOMA, KNOWS THAT.
HE'S FLOWN AROUND THE WORLD HIMSELF AS A PILOT. I HAVE
AFFECTION FOR MY FRIEND FROM OKLAHOMA, BUT I HAVE THE GREATEST
DISAGREEMENT WITH HIM ON THIS AMENDMENT. WHILE THE INTENT MAY
NOT BE THERE, I REALLY BELIEVE THIS AMENDMENT IS RACIST.

MR. REID: { NOT AN OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPT }
I THINK IT'S DIRECTED BASICALLY TO PEOPLE WHO SPEAK SPANISH. NOW,
MR. PRESIDENT, I HAVE THREE SONS THAT SPEAK SPANISH, FLUENT
SPANISH. ONE OF THEM LIVED IN ARGENTINA A COUPLE YEARS. ONE
LIVED IN ECUADOR, ONE LIVED IN SPAIN. THEY SPEAK FLUENT
SPANISH. I'M VERY PROUD OF THESE YOUNG MEN. THEY HAVE ACTED AS
INTERPRETERS FOR ME WHEN I DO RADIO PROGRAMS THAT ARE IN

The amendment passed 63-34.

When you've got nothing to say, recycle....

Thomas Friedman on the end game in Iraq;

House votes for high gas prices


Well, that isn't really what they voted for but thats what the affect is.  The House voted yesterday to continue the ban on off-shore oil drilling that has been in effect for the last 25 years.  If we ever want to become energy independent we need to start looking for oil domestically, offshore and in ANWR and I am sure that is the next target.

So when any pol gets up whining about high gas prices just remember votes like this.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

True colors


The Senate showed its true colors yesterday by defeating an amendment to the Immigration bill that would have required border enforcement first and deferred debate on how to handle the 12-20 million illegal immigrants currently in the country by a vote of 55-40 with 18 idiot Republicans voting to kill the amendment.

Simply mind-boggling!

Here is a list of the 18 Republicans senators who betrayed there conservative base;

Robert Bennett of Utah; Sam Brownback of Kansas; Lincoln Chafee, Rhode Island; Norm Coleman, Minnesota; Susan Collins, Maine; Larry Craig, Idaho; Mike DeWine, Ohio; Lindsey Graham, South Carolina; Chuck Hagel, Nebraska; Dick Lugar, Indiana; Mel Martinez, Florida; Lisa Murkowski, Alaska; Senator Shelby, Alabama; Olympia Snowe, Maine; Senator Specter, Pennsylvania; Ted Stevens, Alaska; Voinovich, Ohio; and John Warner from Virginia.

Be sure to show them some love.

Of course when it came time to vote on the Sen. Sessions amendment to include a 370 mile fence along the border it passed 83-16 with all of the no votes being democrats.  And here they are;
Akaka (D-HI)
Bingaman (D-NM)
Cantwell (D-WA)
Dodd (D-CT)
Durbin (D-IL)
Feingold (D-WI)
Inouye (D-HI)
Jeffords (I-VT)
Kennedy (D-MA)
Lautenberg (D-NJ)
Lieberman (D-CT)
Menendez (D-NJ)
Murray (D-WA)
Obama (D-IL)
Reed (D-RI)
Sarbanes (D-MD)

Why border enforcement? This is why!


Kris's Story

Relaunch!

I would like to apologize to the dozens of readers that I have for not posting more often. I have been concentrating on posting my opinions over on my political forum called "Heart In The Right Place" at The Crazy Water Community and have been neglecting my blog. However the result is that I end up debating with the same 3-4 people. And since they are of the mind that Bush is to blame for a rainy day its become pointless.

So I have decided to relaunch thethingsyoubelieveyoureseeing. I am sure the tens of thousands of you, well maybe tens, will be thrilled.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Did he really say that?

On "Meet The Press" this past Sunday Tim Russert asked;
"Oil demand is up. Supply is down. So why are prices rising?"

Yes he really did ask that.
MR. RUSSERT: Mr. Secretary, if, if demand is up but supply is down, why are the profits so high?

MR. BODMAN: For that reason.

MR. RUSSERT: No, think about that.

MR. BODMAN: You know?

MR. RUSSERT: Play it out.

MR. BODMAN: Demand is up.

MR. RUSSERT: Correct.

MR. BODMAN: Right?

MR. RUSSERT: Right.

MR. BODMAN: So you’ve got more demand, you’re going to force price up.

You’ve got, you’ve got limited supply, and you’re going to have...

MR. RUSSERT: But that’s a decision by the oil companies.

MR. BODMAN: No, it is not. That is a decision—those are—oil is traded every minute of every day, and it’s traded basically 24-by-seven. And it’s, it is determined in marketplaces in New York and London and Tokyo, all over the world. That’s the, the—the oil companies do not determine the price of oil; the producers determine the price of oil.

MR. RUSSERT: They determine, they determine, help determine the price at the pump. And if the, if their profits are going up, they have made a decision to add on the cost at the pump at such a level to guarantee higher profits.

MR. BODMAN: That’s—look, the, the president has made, has made a, a—has given instruction to the Justice Department to investigate exactly that. And so that’s what is ongoing. That’s the question you asked Mr. Cavaney, and we are—we will see whether, in fact, that is the case.

MR. RUSSERT: Jim Cramer, you are renowned capitalist. What do you think of all this?

MR. CRAMER: Valero was able to buy its largest competitor; the government looked the other way. Valero is running its refineries, though, 105 percent of the time. They’re ‘round the clock. We have 100--we have 140 refineries in this country; we had 350 refineries 20 years ago. We have a huge refinery problem, and you can’t build them. And it’s not a federal government issue. It’s a local government issue because no one wants a refinery next to them.

MR. RUSSERT: So what we have is lack of refining capability...

MR. CRAMER: Right.

MR. RUSSERT: ...an increased worldwide demand, ethanol being added and blended in...

MR. CRAMER: Without preparation.

MR. RUSSERT: ...and do you believe the oil companies have been adding on a little bit extra profit?

MR. CRAMER: I, I think if they could drill they would drill. If they could refine more, they would. These are companies that are run for the shareholders, but they’re run to be able to produce as much oil as we can possibly use. They want to do that. Lee Raymond, he, he generated $67 billion in profits for his shareholders. I think that that’s a reasonable return, $144,000 a day. Katie Couric makes $85,000 a day. What value has she created vs. 67 billion by Lee Raymond?