Saturday, May 30, 2009
Friday, May 29, 2009
Robert Gibbs should apologise to the British press for his sneering rant
Posted By: Nile Gardiner at May 29, 2009 at 00:05:00 [General]
Politico has an extraordinary report on Robert Gibbs, the White House Press Secretary, launching a furious broadside against the British press. Here are Gibbs' sneering and condescending remarks:
"I want to speak generally about some reports I've witnessed over the past few years in the British media," Gibbs said. "In some ways, I'm surprised it filtered down."
"Let's just say if I wanted to look up, if I wanted to read a write-up of how Manchester United fared last night in the Champions League Cup, I'd might open up a British newspaper," he continued. "If I was looking for something that bordered on truthful news, I'm not entirely sure it'd be the first pack of clips I'd pick up."
Yesterday we showed you video of Erich "Mancow" Muller, a Chicago-based right-wing shockjock, appearing as a guest on Keith Olbermann's show to discuss his being waterboarded. He claimed it led to an ideological conversion! But now a tipster has provided information that suggests the whole thing may be a hoax.
[Update: The marine who "waterboarded" Mancow told us this morning that he had "no idea what he was doing" and that everything he knows about waterboarding, he read on the internet. Mancow told us that "hoax isn't the right word," but that the whole thing was supposed to be "simulated."]
At least 11 House Democrats (not including freshmen) who have typically sided with gun-control advocates on past votes this time around favored allowing state and local gun laws to take precedence over federal law in national parks.
If they are too stupid to understand the rules maybe they should be voted out of Congress. But since they are Dems I guess we can expect them to retain their seats since the voters are probably too stupid to know how to vote them out...
Geez...one moron said he voted with the NRA "by accident". Come on! At least have the stones to admit you intended to vote the way you did instead of weaseling your way out of responsibility. Very convenient. You can disavow your vote but it still counts. Pathetic.
Monday, May 25, 2009
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Every American with a credit card will see sweeping changes in the market, with limits on sudden hikes in interest rates that drive consumers deeper into debt. Even cardholders who pay off their balance each month may face new annual fees or lose out on lucrative rewards programs.
Congress wrapped up the legislation Wednesday and sent it to President Barack Obama, who plans to sign it on Friday. The bill will revolutionize the market by restricting when and how a card company can raise an individuals interest rate, who can receive a card and how much time people are given to pay their bill.
In general, the new rules which go into effect in nine months will protect debt-ridden consumers from many of the surprise charges common in the industry, such as over-the-limit fees and costs for paying a bill by phone.
This cements a victory for every American consumer who has ever suffered at the hands of the credit card industry, said Sen. Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., chairman of the Banking Committee.
But there will be losers too.
Banks, which oppose the legislation, will need to make up the cost somewhere, and cardholders who pay off their balance in full each month could see new annual fees and lucrative rewards programs canceled.
Change we can believe in...
President Obama told human rights advocates at the White House on Wednesday that he was mulling the need for a "preventive detention" system that would establish a legal basis for the United States to incarcerate terrorism suspects who are deemed a threat to national security but cannot be tried, two participants in the private session said.
The two participants, outsiders who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the session was intended to be off the record, said they left the meeting dismayed.
"He was almost ruminating over the need for statutory change to the laws so that we can deal with individuals who we can't charge and detain," one participant said. "We've known this is on the horizon for many years, but we were able to hold it off with George Bush. The idea that we might find ourselves fighting with the Obama administration over these powers is really stunning."
The other participant said Mr. Obama did not seem to be thinking about preventive detention for terrorism suspects now held at Guantanamo Bay, but rather for those captured in the future, in settings other than a legitimate battlefield like Afghanistan
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Iran says the missiles have a range of almost 1,250 miles (2,000 kilometers). If that’s accurate, the missile brings Moscow, Athens and southern Italy within striking distance from Iran, according to Jane’s Information Group, which provides information on defense issues.
So what will The One do now? Issue a strongly worded letter? The Jerusalem Post has other thoughts;
Kedar, who served in Military Intelligence for 25 years, said US President Barack Obama was "at peace" with the idea of a nuclear Iran.
"You can tell from how the Americans talk. Look at how [US special envoy] George Mitchell talks, or how Obama talks. I don't see them being pressured by this threat. They have shown no urgent desire to change this reality," he added.
"Obama has given up," Kedar said.
Now that's leadership!
California voters kill budget measures
Only salary curbs survive in a rout of Schwarzenegger's slate of reforms
By Eric Bailey
May 20, 2009
Reporting from Sacramento -- The "big five" elected leaders -- Schwarzenegger and the legislative chieftains from both houses -- are slated to begin closed-door meetings today upon the governor's return from Washington, where he spent election day after casting a last-minute absentee ballot.
Geez if I didn't know better I'd say that the NY Times was upset that the measure all went down in flames;
Calif. Voters Reject Measures to Keep State Solvent
By JENNIFER STEINHAUER
Published: May 20, 2009
LOS ANGELES — A smattering of California voters on Tuesday soundly rejected five ballot measures designed to keep the state solvent through the rest of the year.
The results dealt a severe setback to the state’s fragile fiscal structure and to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the state legislators who cobbled together the measures as part of a last-minute budget deal passed in February.
The headline could have said "Californian Voters Reject Tax Increases and Extentions" but that would be, like, fair and balanced...
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
President Barack Obama's allies in the Senate will not provide funds to close the Guantanamo Bay prison next January, a top Democratic official said Tuesday.
With debate looming on Obama's spending request to cover military and diplomatic operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, the official says Democrats will deny the Pentagon and Justice Department $80 million to relocate Guantanamo's 240 detainees....
It appears to be a tactical retreat. Once the administration develops a plan to close the facility, congressional Democrats are likely to revisit the topic, provided they are satisfied there are adequate safeguards.
President Barack Obama's new fuel and emission standards for cars and trucks will save billions of barrels of oil but are expected to cost consumers an extra $1,300 per vehicle by the time the plan is complete in 2016.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
A source close to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi now confirms that Pelosi was told in February 2003 by her intelligence aide, Michael Sheehy, that waterboarding was actually used on CIA detainee Abu Zubaydah.
This appears to contradict Pelosi’s account that she was never told waterboarding actually happened, only that the administration was considering using it.
Sheehy attended a briefing in which waterboarding was discussed in February 2003, with Rep. Jane Harman, D-California, who took over Pelosi’s spot as the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee.
This source says Pelosi didn’t object when she learned that waterboarding was being used because she had not been personally briefed about it — only her aide had been told.
Monday, May 11, 2009
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) - Officials of the Miss California USA pageant have strongly criticized titleholder Carrie Prejean (pray-ZHAN') but say it's not their decision whether she should be stripped of her crown.
Co-executive directors Keith Lewis and Shanna Moakler told a Beverly Hills press conference Monday that only Miss USA pageant owner Donald Trump can make that decision.
The 21-year-old San Diego native created controversy during the Miss USA pageant when she said she believes marriage should only be between a man and a woman.
The state pageant has been investigating whether she violated her contract by making public appearances with groups opposed to same-sex marriage. Prejean also failed to reveal that she once posed in her underwear.
If she made public appearances with pro-gay marriage groups would that violate her contract too? And if it does than why did the Miss USA officials allow the question at the pageant in the first place?
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Pelosi: I Was Told Interrogation Methods Were LawfulI was trying to think of how to explain that this excuse that the Dems use of being an easily fooled stupid moron is getting really old...but the Mudville Gazette beat me to it...
The House speaker's statement came after CIA records showed Pelosi was briefed in September 2002 on the interrogation methods and appeared to contradict her claim last month that she was never told that waterboarding or other enhanced interrogation techniques were being used
Friday, May 08, 2009
It’s bad enough the administration was taking heat about whether $17 billion is a big budget cut or not. Now, it appears a bunch of Congressional Democrats might not even agree to those cuts.
Notes the Washington Post’s Balz: “To date, the president’s rhetoric about fiscal discipline exceeds his results. He has long said he would require his team to scrub the budget “line by line” for savings. Many of the reductions, while worthy, represent small change.”
Yeah, like dipping a teaspoon in the ocean...
Now Democrats are ganging up on President Barack Obama’s
plans to shut down the Guantanamo Bay prison. Or rather, the
president’s lack of planning for how to shutter the prison and how to
handle the detainees.
“They say, ‘We’re going to close Guantanamo.’ OK, fine. How are you
going to do that? That’s the question,” Rep. Neal Abercrombie
(D-Hawaii) told POLITICO Thursday. “They should have had that worked
out from the get-go.”
“There’s this vague game plan that now we’re going to leave
Guantanamo,” Abercrombie said. “It’s allowed it to become a political
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who supports the Obama plan,
admits that there’s no clear answer yet on Guantanamo: “The issue is,
how are we going to close it?”
And House Appropriations Committee Chairman Dave Obey (D-Wis.) has
told the White House that “when they have a plan, they’re welcome to
come back and talk to us.”
Intelligence officials released documents this evening saying that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was briefed in September 2002 about the use of harsh interrogation tactics against al-Qaeda prisoners, seemingly contradicting her repeated statements over the past 18 months that she was never told that these techniques were actually being used.
In a 10-page memo outlining an almost seven-year history of classified briefings, intelligence officials said that Pelosi and then-Rep. Porter Goss (R-Fla.) were the first two members of Congress ever briefed on the interrogation tactics. Then the ranking member and chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, respectively, Pelosi and Goss were briefed Sept. 4, 2002, one week before the first anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
The memo, issued by the Director of National Intelligence and the Central Intelligence Agency to Capitol Hill, notes the Pelosi-Goss briefing covered “EITs including the use of EITs on Abu Zubaydah.” EIT is an acronym for enhanced interrogation technique.
Thursday, May 07, 2009
ON GUANTANAMO, GOP DISPARAGES MEN AND WOMEN WHO KEEP OUR COMMUNITIES SAFE
Why do Republicans think that Americans can’t do their jobs?
Today, John Boehner and the Republican House leadership are introducing legislation to keep Guantanamo detainees from being transferred to facilities in the United States. They claim that this serves American security. But the reality is that our criminal justice system has a long history of holding hardened terrorists successfully, including the perpetrator of the first World Trade Center attacks, numerous 9/11 conspirators, the Shoe Bomber and Timothy McVeigh. The men and women who serve their country by working at these facilities are ready and eager to do their jobs – and they have the confidence of the communities that depend economically on prison facilities. But John Boehner, Mitch McConnell and other Republicans in Congress continue to claim that the men and women who run our prisons and help keep America safe can’t do their jobs.
Source: Ramirez's substance a sexual enhancer - MLB - Yahoo! Sports
By Tim Brown and Steve Henson 2 hours, 3 minutes ago
LOS ANGELES – A source close to Manny Ramirez(notes) said Thursday that the illegal substance for which the Los Angeles Dodgers slugger tested positive was not “an agent customarily used for performance enhancing.”
At least not on the baseball diamond. The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the substance is supposed to boost sex drive. It is not Viagra, but a substance that treats the cause rather providing a temporary boost in sexual performance, the source said.
UPDATE: Listening to Michael Kay on 1050 ESPN in New York it appears this Yahoo Sports story is BS....
Manny Ramirez will be suspended 50 games for positive drug test - Los Angeles Times
Manny Ramirez will be suspended 50 games for positive drug test
Kirby Lee / US Presswire
By Bill Shaikin and Dylan Hernandez Times Staff Writers
8:35 AM PDT, May 7, 2009
Manny Ramirez has tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs and will be suspended 50 games starting today, The Times has learned.
The test result and suspension is expected to be announced later today. The Dodgers informed triple-A outfielder Xavier Paul this morning that he was being promoted to Los Angeles.
Wednesday, May 06, 2009
An expedition team which set sail from Plymouth on a 5,000-mile carbon emission-free trip to Greenland have been rescued by an oil tanker. . . .
Raoul Surcouf, Richard Spink and skipper Ben Stoddart sent a mayday because they feared for their safety amid winds of 68mph (109km/h)...In one incident Mr Stoddart hit his head and the wind generator and solar panels were ripped from the yacht.
The Justice Department’s Torture Hypocrisy by Andrew C. McCarthy on National Review Online
The Justice Department’s Torture Hypocrisy
Investigate Bush lawyers’ torture analysis one day, cite it favorably the next.
By Andrew C. McCarthy
The Obama Justice Department is engaged in the worst type of hypocrisy. Its Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) is nearing completion of a 220-page report which will recommend that Attorney General Eric Holder refer former Bush administration lawyers to their state bar disciplinary committees over purported ethical lapses in the legal analysis those lawyers drafted to justify harsh interrogation techniques that critics — including President Obama himself — have labeled “torture.” The draft report, which is not public, was nevertheless reported on last night by the Washington Post and New York Times — apparently based on leaks from the Justice Department (in an ethics case, no less). Such bar referrals could result in profound professional and financial damage, potentially including disbarment — all due to actions the lawyers took in defense of the United States after the 9/11 attacks.
Yet, even as the OPR report is being finalized, even after Obama declared himself open to the possibility of criminal prosecution against the Bush officials, and even after Holder promised to conduct an investigation that would “follow the evidence wherever it takes us, follow the law wherever that takes us” (emphasis added), the Obama Justice Department is relying on the very same legal analysis in order to urge a federal appeals court to reject torture claims. In fact, as the Obama Justice Department argued to that appeals court a little over a week ago, the torture law analysis in question has already been adopted by another federal appeals court.