Monday, July 31, 2006

Dirty PoliTricks

This is just nasty ...

GOP Senator Rick Santorum has a new television ad out that claims his Democratic opponent, Bobby Casey Jr., has been endorsed by "al-Jazeerah."

"Who's side is he on, anyway?" asks the ad.

Little catch - "al-Jazeerah" is not the Arab news network (which, in my opinion, is one of the best news services in the world). "al-Jazeera" is the name of that organization. No, "al-Jazeerah" is based in Dalton, GA. It is a hoax organization being utilized for propaganda.

Isn't that sad?

'X' Marks the Spot?

I just spotted this strange collection of trails in the Flower Mound sky. I jumped out of my car in a gas station parking lot off 2499 and counted at least six very high-flying aircraft that appeared to be spraying whatever this is into the sky. (Not pictured: at least a half dozen smaller lines.)

These do not appear to be normal condensation trails left over from commercial airliners, but I am no expert. However, the trails are much higher up than even the passing clouds, and appear to be made up of something quite dense, given that it is taking a really long time for them to dissapate. This is unusual.

**Update ...
Doing some reading on the 'net. There is a group of conspiracy theorists that have dubbed these lines "chemtrails." While wading through the mass of paranoid babbling ("The New World Order is trying to keep you from becoming a higher spiritual being by poisoning our air!"), I came across some actual reporting on the topic in the The Las Vegas Tribune. I also found a very interesting report from a Los Angeles television station.

My guess - the U.S. government, much like the Chineese government, is trying to affect the weather by engeenering clouds. Beijing can produce rain on demand by firing small missles into the upper atmosphere. So, maybe Uncle Sam just wants to keep up with the Jonses.

In fact, our own Senator, Kay Bailey Hutchison, sponsored a bill, presented last year, to allow research and development of weather modification.

But what exactly are they spraying? And to what ends? It seems as though I am not the only one asking such questions. If this is a government operation, the public has a right to know about it.

So, what is up with this giant 'X' over Flower Mound? I'll be making some phone calls.

Perverting Justice

Bush submits new terror detainee bil

By ANNE PLUMMER FLAHERTY, Associated Press Writer Fri Jul 28, 6:53 PM ET

WASHINGTON - U.S. citizens suspected of terror ties might be detained indefinitely and barred from access to civilian courts under legislation proposed by the Bush administration, say legal experts reviewing an early version of the bill.

A 32-page draft measure is intended to authorize the Pentagon's tribunal system, established shortly after the 2001 terrorist attacks to detain and prosecute detainees captured in the war on terror. The tribunal system was thrown out last month by the Supreme Court.

Administration officials, who declined to comment on the draft, said the proposal was still under discussion and no final decisions had been made.

Senior officials are expected to discuss a final proposal before the Senate Armed Services Committee next Wednesday.

According to the draft, the military would be allowed to detain all "enemy combatants" until hostilities cease. The bill defines enemy combatants as anyone "engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners who has committed an act that violates the law of war and this statute."

Legal experts said Friday that such language is dangerously broad and could authorize the military to detain indefinitely U.S. citizens who had only tenuous ties to terror networks like al Qaeda.

Read More ...

Lying Liars!

Remember "flip flop" from the 2004 campaign? Here is a perfect example ...

May 8, 2006: Bush: I would like to close Guantanamo

June 14, 2006: Bush: Guantanamo's future up to Supreme Court

June 21, 2006: The US 'wants to end Guantanamo'

Today, July 31, 2006 ...
New maximum-security jail to open at Guantanamo Bay
Far from winding down, the controversial US detention centre is expanding
By Andrew Buncombe in Washington

The controversy over the US-run detention centre at Guantanamo Bay is to erupt anew with confirmation by the Pentagon that a new, permanent prison will open in the Cuban enclave in the next few weeks.

Camp 6, a state-of-the-art maximum-security jail built by a Halliburton subsidiary, will be able to hold 200 prisoners. Commander Robert Durand, a spokesman for Joint Task Force Guantanamo, said the $30m, two-storey block was due to open at the end of September. He added: "Camp 6 is designed to improve the quality of life for the detainees and provide greater protection for the people working in the facility."

This development will refuel the controversy about the jail, which still holds 450 prisoners from President George Bush's "war on terror". Campaigners pointed to Mr Bush's claim earlier this summer that he would "like to close" Guantanamo. Just weeks after he made his comments in June, the Supreme Court ruled that the administration's system for trying prisoners using military tribunals breached United States and international law.

At the time, some campaigners predicted the decision marked the beginning of the end of Guantanamo Bay. Since then, however, the Bush administration has signalled its intention to introduce new legislation that would circumvent the court's ruling. The revelation that Camp 6 is poised to open is proof that it intends to keep using the prison.
More here ...

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Blackmail and the minimum wage

This is absurd.

The Republican-controlled House of Representatives just voted to raise the minimum wage, but they stapled a massive cut of the Estate Tax (a.k.a. the "Paris Hilton Tax") to the legislation. It likely will not pass the Senate. But even if it does, they are blackmailing the working people of this country by stripping out a primary column of support from our system of taxation. The Estate Tax applies to the rich. The very rich. What in the hell does that have to do with helping the working poor?

This is beyond Reganomics. This is crazy and wrong, and members of Congress who vote against it, which is the right thing to do, will be walking into a political trap 'come election time. Is that not dirty?

Sabotaging the American Dream, I tell ya ... And it broke down years ago.

Friday, July 28, 2006


Last week, I got reamed in the Letters page of The News Connection. This week, slight vindication: a show of support for Liberal philosophy. Still, though, I do have my detractors. An example ...
I just read the July 21st edition of TNC and I wanted you to know that I agree with the opinion expressed by the authors of the letters to the editor regarding Stephen Webster. I just don’t have any interest in Stephen’s one sided and mean whining. I am so glad others feel the same way I do. I am already at the point where I avoid anything with his name on it. Stephen needs to grow up and get a clue.

I really feel like Flower Mound is above that sort of rhetoric and it’s insulting to have an ignorant boy lecture about his immature ideology. Thanks for your time. I do enjoy your newspaper when Stephen is not around.

Jennifer Pellegrini
Flower Mound
Thank you, Jennifer. I appreciate the feedback.

I humbly offer my retort ...
"Believe nothing just because a so-called wise person said it. Believe nothing just because a belief is generally held. Believe nothing just because it is said in ancient books. Believe nothing just because it is said to be of divine origin. Believe nothing just because someone else believes it. Believe only what you yourself test and judge to be true."

-- The Buddah

And to my detractors I say, "Spingere fuori."

That's about all that needs to be said, I think.

Cops infiltrate another peace group

Police spies chosen to lead war protest
- Demian Bulwa, Chronicle Staff Writer
Friday, July 28, 2006

Two Oakland police officers working undercover at an anti-war protest in May 2003 got themselves elected to leadership positions in an effort to influence the demonstration, documents released Thursday show.

The department assigned the officers to join activists protesting the U.S. war in Iraq and the tactics that police had used at a demonstration a month earlier, a police official said last year in a sworn deposition.

At the first demonstration, police fired nonlethal bullets and bean bags at demonstrators who blocked the Port of Oakland's entrance in a protest against two shipping companies they said were helping the war effort. Dozens of activists and longshoremen on their way to work suffered injuries ranging from welts to broken bones and have won nearly $2 million in legal settlements from the city.

The extent of the officers' involvement in the subsequent march May 12, 2003, led by Direct Action to Stop the War and others, is unclear. But in a deposition related to a lawsuit filed by protesters, Deputy Police Chief Howard Jordan said activists had elected the undercover officers to "plan the route of the march and decide I guess where it would end up and some of the places that it would go."
More here ...

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Protester interrupts Iraqi PM's speech to Congress

Behavior to be emulated by citizens in favor of truth, justice ... and all the rest.

This moment, in Lewisville

I just got back from snapping a photo of a wreck on the Interstate Highway nearest my office. This was taken from the F.M. 407 overpass, hovering just above I-35E in Lewisville, Texas ...

Still trying to figure out who was in the truck and if he is okay. Drive carefully, everyone.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

All my friends are felons

Pictured below, cavorting with the criminal element, is none other than my Congressman, Michael C. Burgess, next to mobster money launderer Tom DeLay. See: the Burgess for Congress website.

Not sure what is up with the beard and turban, though. Or that weird Mona Lisa print. Must have been at a dress-up party or something. Weird, rich, white guys ...

Anyhow. Vote Republican everyone! Go Team!

Monday, July 24, 2006

Camp Out @ Congress

Free Movie Tonight – The Truth About 9/11

Exclusive Interview with Dr. Morgan Reynolds, member of Scholars for 9/11 Truth

By Stephen Webster
Investigative Reporter

For The Lone Star Iconoclast

Former Bush Administration appointee Dr. Morgan Reynolds at the Lakewood Theater in Dallas, Texas.
Photo by Stephen Webster

Dr. Morgan Reynolds is a penny-pinching, free market, small government Republican. As the former Chief Economist for the United States Department of Labor from 2001-2002, he enjoyed a lifestyle much easier than many in the United States, having been appointed to the position by the well-oiled Bush team. Currently professor emeritus with Texas A&M University, Reynolds spends nearly all of his off-time fomenting a New American Revolution.

Unlike his former government colleagues, Reynolds does not believe the official line on Sept. 11, 2001. On Saturday, July 22, in partnership with the Dallas Air America Radio group, the Lakewood Theater in North Dallas devoted a special free screening to Loose Change: Second Edition and 9/11 Revisited. Reynolds was on hand to lecture the audience between films, and to give them several parting thoughts at the end of the evening. Loose Change played in front of a nearly packed house; about half the crowd remained through the end of Revisited. Both films are available online, free of charge. See further reading at the end of this writing.

The Lone Star Iconoclast was on-hand to watch both films and sit down with Dr. Reynolds after he spoke.

LSI: “Thank you for taking the time to speak with us, Dr. Reynolds. You are currently professor emeritus with Texas A&M, correct?”

MR: “Yes, I’ve taught there for 28 years. And in 2001-2002, I was the Chief Economist Department of Labor, a political appointee of the Bush/Cheney Administration. I was also the director of the Criminal Justice Center at the National Center for Policy Analysis, which is headquartered in Dallas, Texas.”

Reynolds quit the Dept. of Labor once he began to question 9/11.
Photo by Stephen Webster

LSI: “So, short version … 9/11 was an ‘Inside Job.’ You lean more toward the side that says the Bush Administration made it happen, rather than those who think they simply allowed it to happen.”

MR: “Yes. I think we have compelling evidence that 9/11 was done by elements of the Bush/Cheney government, aided by select outsiders. They did it. It doesn’t have anything to do with Arabs or caves in Afghanistan. It was all set up to aid the war on terror, control, oil, promote the global domination project and the like …”

LSI: “So … How far does that rabbit hole go?”

MR: (Laughing) “It goes very far. But, first, 9/11 is the lynchpin event of this century. We have to bring the movement to a boil so we can prosecute the real perpetrators. Once this opens up, it’ll open up a whole raft of things … It will go very deep and very wide. Once the American public is really awakened, and it is happening week by week, this could lead, ultimately, to the paymasters, the so-called invisible government … But we’re not ready to go there just yet. We’ve got to crack 9/11. That’s the key. People who just want to try to oppose the war in Iraq, or be supportive of the Israelis in Lebanon, or try to stop them [the Bush’s] piecemeal are going to fail. None of this could be happening without 9/11. We’ve got to break 9/11 open for this movement to go further. I call it a constitutional crisis that we need to have. We need to go there.”

LSI: “How do you go about shaking the foundations of government’s story of 9/11 in the minds of others?”

MR: “Well, a lot of us [Scholars for 9/11 Truth] have worked on the physical evidence front, because it is a lot stronger than eyewitness testimony. So, for good or ill, a lot of us are pursuing this from a scientific standpoint. That may not make the best marketing, but I think we need this powerful evidence. Now, when it comes to convincing the American people and getting the word out, and educating, and using various types of persuasion … We haven’t gotten that far yet. But with the help of the Internet and the alternative media, we are making steady progress. Just not any great leaps yet. One way to approach somebody about this – and this is the approach my wife uses – is to just ask somebody out of the blue, ‘Are you satisfied with the 9/11 story?’ For a lot of people, it almost just begs to say, ‘Well, no, I’m really not.’”

Reynolds insists it is every citizen's duty to question the events surrounding 9/11.
Photo by Stephen Webster

MR: “So, you ask what they find unsatisfying or suspicious. Now, when some people are confronted with this, they don’t want to think about it. They don’t want to look at this. They want to shirk their duty as a citizen. So, maybe the nation can’t be saved. But I’m not that pessimistic. If 90 percent of the public doesn’t want to deal with the truth, deal with the facts, then the nation cannot be saved. I think it is only a small minority that doesn’t want to deal with the facts. We have to go there. The truth is, to me, the most important thing. After 9/11, there is no more important issue in the world than 9/11.”

LSI: “Many people will remember there was a 14 month delay, getting the 9/11 Commission up and running. The Bush Administration kept stonewalling. Why?”

MR: “They didn’t want, and they did avoid, an objective investigation of the facts, because it would lead right to the White House. They were forced by political pressure, especially by the Jersey Girls, to appoint such a commission. In normal circumstances, one would have been appointed or formed within a week. Any major event like this … We find out what went wrong, and how to fix it. Their whole resistance to an investigation had to be modified. What they did, of course, is control the personnel.”

MR: “Personnel is policy, as the old Regan government used to say. They get sellouts like Lee Hamilton. Insiders like Philip Zelikow. Thomas Keene … As only a prosecutor would say, ‘We’re mobbed up.’ There’s no way they can serve on any kind of criminal justice forum. Even when Max Cleeland resigned, saying he didn’t want to be part of a cover up, there was a lot of pressure to appoint Kristin Breitweiser, one of the four Jersey girls. But they didn’t even do that. They appointed an experienced guy, Senator Bob Kerrey. So, they couldn’t even let one outsider, a hopefully objective person, in on that. I mean, they appointed Henry Kissinger. (Laughs) But not even that made it in the mainstream, controlled media. They got a milder, cooperative-type set up. The idea of the government investigating its self objectively, I find, brings an even smaller chance of producing justice than any prosecution.”

LSI: “What do you believe regarding the Pentagon? Was it a missile that hit it?”

MR: “Most likely. It was a cruise missile, I think. I mean, if you want to bust bunkers, which is what they’re made for. They are sub-sonic, penetrating, explosive warheads. There are other theories that I would not reject offhand. It could have been an F-16. It could have been, and I don’t believe this, but it could have been an AT Sky Warrior. There are others that believe it was an entirely internal explosion. On my website (, I assembled the strongest evidence I feel proves that it was not a Boeing 757 that hit the Pentagon. The most recent development is that you couldn’t, at 500 miles per hour plus, bring a plane in at the first floor. It is physically impossible.”

LSI: “What about the light posts? Wouldn’t a plane’s wing get ripped off from hitting just one of those?”

MR: “Right. Yeah. As the movie Loose Change shows, there was a small, corporate aircraft that his one light pole at Houston/Hobby and, um, it wrecked the plane. It was everywhere. People don’t appreciate the difference between steel and aluminum. I mean, I went and weighed my sledgehammer. It is 9 ½ lbs. I could take that hammer and just wreck havoc on a 757’s wing. I could whack a few panels off very easily. The fuselage is only two millimeters thick. It would not be difficult.”

"[T]his idea that a big jet liner vanished into the pentagon is a big non-starter. It is totally laughable."
Photo by Stephen Webster

MR: “The point is, while the towers were definitely more hardened than the pentagon, the plane would just shatter; crumple. There would be debris. I was talking on the radio to a woman just recently whose husband was witness to a plane crash out at JFK. You can’t imagine what a mess … There is people, there’s limbs, there’s blood, there’s millions of pieces of metal and debris. A big, big field of stuff, everywhere. So, this idea that a big jet liner vanished into the pentagon is a big non-starter. It is totally laughable.”

LSI: “Wasn’t part of the official explanation that the debris from the jet ‘disintegrated’ in the ensuing fires?”

MR: “They had different defenses, including vaporization, which could never happen. Couldn’t happen, physically. That some people believe the wings folded up and allowed the plane to enter a hole, which is also rubbish, physically. The plane did not leave a scar on the building where the wings would have been, period. If I put my arms out, and come walking toward you at a fairly fast pace, and then bump into you, my arms move forward. (Laughs) Just simple physics! This is 8th grade science, here! Then, you have these engines, with 50,000 pounds of thrust, driving these things into the building. And somehow they folded up and didn’t impact the wall of that building? People need to do their homework on such an important issue.”

Further Reading …

Thursday, July 20, 2006

What's wrong with this letter?

Thank you for expressing your support for the impeachment of President Bush. I appreciate hearing from you on this important matter.

On January 20, 2001, George W. Bush, was sworn in as the 43rd President of the United States. Since taking office, President Bush's record shows that he is an honest and humble man who will seek to unite the American people and not divide them along political party, racial, ethnic, or gender lines. His vision for the United States is one based upon trusting American families through providing much-needed tax relief for everyone, empowering parents with control over their children's education, rebuilding our national defense, and protecting and enhancing Medicare and Social Security benefits for our nation's elderly. He has exhibited excellent leadership through crises like the September 11th attack on the World Trade Center and the economic recession. I believe that President Bush has and will continue to serve our country well, restore trustworthiness and respect to the Office of the Presidency, and work to ensure that every American has the opportunity to experience the American dream.

Again, thank you for taking the time to contact me. I appreciate having the opportunity to represent you in the U.S. House of Representatives. Please feel free to visit my website ( or contact me with any future concerns.

Michael C. Burgess, M.D.
Member of Congress
Hear that hissing sound? It is Mike's polling numbers continuing to deflate.

No wonder Burgess votes with Bush and (FORMER Rep.) Tom DeLay and so many other corrupt Republicans so often. As for the number of lies buried in that little form-missive, I do not wish to count. Emphasis added for your own research, if you care.

Three words for Burgess ...

"Mike, you're wrong."

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Damn its HOT!

So hot, I took a photograph yesterday for the cover of the newspaper. It was rejected. Oh well. At least you can appreciate it here. Selah.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Darkly Brilliant - The Summer's Best Trip

Review for The News Connection ...

A Scanner Darkly
, starring Keanu Reeves, Robert Downey Jr., Wynona Ryder, Woody Harrelson and Rory Cochrane. Based on the novel by Phillip K. Dick. Adapted for the screen by Richard Linklater. Directed by Richard Linklater. Rated “R” by the MPAA for language, drug content, sexuality and brief violence.

A Scanner Darkly: A trip you will never forget.

“What does a scanner see? Into the head? Into the heart? Does it see into me? Clearly? Or darkly?”

-- Bob Arctor

This line, though delivered late in the film, is perhaps the most important key, of many keys, to understanding A Scanner Darkly: a vivid, hallucinogenic, complex tale of society gone horribly wrong.

Written by late novelist Phillip K. Dick, author of well-known science fiction classics such as “Blade Runner” and “Minority Report” - not to exclude lesser-known classics “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep” and “The Man in the High Castle” – A Scanner Darkly is a tale derived from the author’s experience with drugs. Make no mistake, this is a “drug movie,” if there is such a cliché. However, Half Baked it is not.

The first element of this film that will likely draw people into the multiplex is the artistic style Director Linklater has employed. Shot with real actors in real environments, as many conventional films are today, A Scanner Darkly takes a nod from Linklater’s last film, Waking Life, which featured said actors on screen, but not. On display is a strange type of animation that is laid over the film, giving it a drawn, otherworldly, artificial quality. It certainly fits in with the thematic use of drugs, quite literally taking the viewer on a trip.

A Scanner Darkly introduces its characters in a very sinister way. The film opens with sub-character Charles Freck (Rory Cochrane) tripping bugs. As he hallucinates aphids crawling all over his body, he scratches himself feverishly under a spout of water, desperate for the torment to stop. This is a side-effect of the drug “Substance D,” which has wrought upon American society a plague unlike any before it.

Robert Downey Jr. as James Barris

Nearly 20 percent of Americans are addicted to Substance D. They develop all sorts of problems, from split personalities to uncontrollable hallucinations, finally disconnecting from reality altogether. As a doctor explains the drug to the main character, Bob Arctor (Keanu Reeves), the two hemispheres of the brain begin to compete, slowly leaving those addicted powerless to interact with the world. Only one private corporation in America is equipped to deal with the hoards of burnt-out junkies left in the wake of Substance D: New Path, which specializes in what one character accurately calls “the new slavery.”

The catch: Arctor is also a cop. He works undercover for the government, operating a node of the Scanner, the ultimate in surveillance technology. The government is portrayed as an all-seeing, all-knowing, tyrannical behemoth, constantly monitoring every one of its citizens’ movements and communications. The scanner sees all, as Arctor knows all too well. But the audience does not know the full reach of the plot, which holds several masked twists and turns not decipherable to the popcorn-inclined moviegoer. Though the dramatic arch does not reach the heights of some of Phillip K. Dick’s other film adaptations – take Blade Runner for example – close attention paid is an investment with significant return.

Keanu Reeves as Bob Arctor

A Scanner Darkly is not typical summer fare. Linklater’s films never fit that mold. It is complicated, metaphorical, visually stunning, oddly and uncomfortably funny, and intellectually challenging. News-junkies will spot a cameo by radio and Internet personality Alex Jones of Likewise, any citizen of America concerned with preserving the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution, which protects society at large from unreasonable search and seizure, will appreciate the projected evolution of spying technology employed by America’s current government, and what it could mean for “The American Experience” in roughly a decade.

A Scanner Darkly asks a lot of questions about the drug war, the surveillance state, and what freedom and reality really are. Like all of Phillip K. Dick’s writings, it is highly provocative, lucid and perturbing. It will remain in your mind longer than a hit of acid. But in this case, such a statement is not a bad thing.

If you appreciate challenging, intelligent, self-aware art, get yourself to a theater. But if the epitome of your summer movie tour was Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest, you will be much happier just skipping it.

Rating: four out of five

Return of The Draft

Because we all knew it was coming.

An excerpt from the new (old, actually -- didn't realize when it was posted) Rolling Stone article ...
The Bush administration has sworn up and down that it will never reinstate a draft. During the campaign last year, the president dismissed the idea as nothing more than "rumors on the Internets" and declared, "We're not going to have a draft -- period." Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, in an Op-Ed blaming "conspiracy mongers" for "attempting to scare and mislead young Americans," insisted that "the idea of reinstating the draft has never been debated, endorsed, discussed, theorized, pondered or even whispered by anyone in the Bush administration."

That assertion is demonstrably false. According to an internal Selective Service memo made public under the Freedom of Information Act, the agency's acting director met with two of Rumsfeld's undersecretaries in February 2003 precisely to debate, discuss and ponder a return to the draft.
The memo duly notes the administration's aversion to a draft but adds, "Defense manpower officials concede there are critical shortages of military personnel with certain special skills, such as medical personnel, linguists, computer network engineers, etc." The potentially prohibitive cost of "attracting and retaining such personnel for military service," the memo adds, has led "some officials to conclude that, while a conventional draft may never be needed, a draft of men and women possessing these critical skills may be warranted in a future crisis." This new draft, it suggests, could be invoked to meet the needs of both the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security.
Time to take to the streets again, my friends.

Friday, July 14, 2006


This is a rather disturbing image taken in Mosul, Iraq. It really illustrates what war has done to the psyche of the nation's children, I think. It is very unsettling to me, and it is not even all that violent or gory. I do not even know if the gun is real, but when I saw this picture I was stopped right in my tracks.

I am saddened by the knowledge that my Federal Representative, Dr. Michael C. Burgess (R-TX26), maintains his adamant support of the policy that has produced an unbridled civil war in Iraq and countless other hotspots all over the world. I wonder if the Hippocratic Oath counts for beans to that man.

Look. That little girl is Staying the Course. Won't you join her?

Right-wing nutjob sends fake anthrax to NY Times

This could not have come from anyone but a wingnut 29 percent-er. And what brought it on? The laughable attempt by the White House to smear the New York Times for running a story about an illegal spying program that Bush himself has bragged about in the past.

Extremists have no sense of logic or reason. Damn the fringes.

You know ... This makes me really wonder about the original anthrax scares circa 2001, now that I think about it. But I'll save the speculation for another time.


This is a great picture. It was snapped yesterday in Germany. The text is mine.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Moby, feat. Chuck D. - "Make Love, Fuck War"

This video is awesome. It really touched a nerve with me given what has been going on in Israel the last couple days. And now, with these kidnapped soldiers being smuggled into Iran, it is looking more and more like we're being lead into a war with that country too. I do not want that. Nobody wants that. Least of all Moby and Public Enemy's Chuck D. Power to the people, 'cause the people want peace.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Stupidity? Or something worse?

Either the Department of Homeland Security has a "special needs" person in charge of developing their list of sites in need of their all-seeing dollar ... Or, they are evil and operate by the bullet points of a much darker agenda. Of evil. Dig this. From
WASHINGTON (AP) -- A Homeland Security database of vulnerable terror targets in the United States, which includes an insect zoo but not the Statue of Liberty, is too flawed to determine allocation of federal security funds, the department's internal watchdog found.

Much of the study by Homeland Security Inspector General Richard Skinner appears to have been done before the department announced in May it would cut security grants to New York and Washington by 40 percent this year.

The report, which was released Tuesday, affirmed the fury of those two cities -- the two targets of the September 11, 2001, attacks -- which claimed the department did not accurately assess their risks.

Instead, the department's database of vulnerable critical infrastructure and key resources included an insect zoo, a bourbon festival, a bean fest and a kangaroo conservation center. They represent examples of key assets identified in Florida, Illinois, Indiana, and Maryland.
More here ...

"The President is always right"

Yesterday, the Senate Judiciary Committee questioned Steven Bradbury, the chief of the Justice Department's office of legal council, under oath (for once). After an intense grilling over the recent Supreme Court decision in the Hamden v. Rumsfield case dealing with Guantanimo Bay and the torture of prisoners, Bradbury told the committee "The President is always right."

See it for yourself.


Is this reminding anyone else of The Age of Nixon? Specifically, that famous quote, "Well, when the President does it, that means that it's not illegal." Yeah, well, the Supreme Court disagrees, even stacked as it is today.

The President is always right? Sheesh.

I hope you're not buying this, America.

More 9/11 Truth on Faux News?

They're really hitting this topic hard. I think they have the notion that they can make anyone and everyone on the "Left" side of the political spectrum look like what Hannity calls "Nutty Conspiracy Theorists" by airing the ideas of the Scholars for 9/11 Truth group. Well, it isn't quite working out as they planned it. Watch this.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

New CCA President finds fulfillment, joy in work

By Stephen Webster
Investigative Reporter

Scott Orr, the recently-appointed President of Lewisville-based Christian Community Action, is having the time of his life.

“You know, I spent a long time making money for people who already had money, and it just wasn’t what I was looking for,” he said during an interview on July 11. “I wanted to give back. I wanted to set a good example for my sons and my community. So I got into volunteer work and found myself a lot happier.”

Photo by Stephen Webster
Scott Orr, President of Christian Community Action, laughs at a friendly joke by one of the food pantry's volunteers.

Orr, a graduate of Harvard Business School, spent several years after graduating working for Fidelity Investments. “And really, they are a great company,” he said. “I was very good at what I did, but after a while that well was running dry for me. I decided to take a few months off. I had been blessed with some financial flexibility, so I just started looking around, trying to figure out what I wanted to do.”

Scott looked into a variety of fields, from running a restaurant to managing mutual funds. But it was not until be got involved with a small adoption agency that he found his life’s calling. Christian Works for Children, a small agency based in Dallas, gave him a taste of what a life spent helping others can be like. After several months helping find stable, loving homes for under-privileged children, he was ready to step up to non-profit management.

About five months ago, Scott was appointed to lead the 33-year-old CCA, one of North Texas’ largest non-profit organizations. “It has been an amazing experience so far,” he said. “This organization is such a huge part of our community’s effort to help the poor among us. And we’ve been tremendously successful, I’m glad to say.”

“Typically,” explained Scott, “someone comes to us because they are about to have their electricity cut off, or their water cut off, or they are about to be evicted from their home or apartment. They come to us because they are in a crisis, and we do everything we can to meet that need right away.”

In these cases, CCA sends a caseworker to visit with the individual. The caseworker then determines what they need to help them along. “But it is not just a hand out,” explained Scott. “It is a hand up. If that person, say, cannot make additional money because they didn’t graduate high school, we help them get into a GED program; or, if they are about to be evicted because they can’t hold a job, we’ll help them with their rent and then get them into one of our job training programs. We’ll give them some nice clothes, teach them how to present themselves to employers, how to hold themselves while on the job, etcetera.”

“Certainly, there are some who come to us that are permanently disabled, like senior citizens who have been abandoned by their adult children and can no longer work, or people who are just physically unable to support themselves. We do everything we can to help them, because if we don’t, nobody else will.”

Photo by Stephen Webster
Scott sits next to CCA's statue of Jesus in the parking lot of their main office on Mill Street in Lewisville.

Currently, CCA runs several large-scale operations in the area, including several thrift stores, a food pantry, a part-time clinic, a public housing “neighborhood,” a job-training center complete with networked computers and Internet access, and, coming soon, a community garden.

“The community garden is something I want to see materialize in the near future,” said Scott. “It can really bring people from all walks of life together. Because really, it isn’t so much about the garden, or the fresh produce that comes out of it. It is about deepening the roots of our community. It is about strengthening bonds between neighbors. I hope to see the cities in the area come together and set aside some vacant land for a project like that. Not only will it help the food pantry by supplying it with fresh fruit and vegetables, but people who wouldn’t normally talk to each other can come together and become friends, so when someone slips through the cracks, or disaster strikes someone in the community, there is a support system to catch them.”

Currently, CCA’s operations are slightly scaled back due to a lack of donations. “During the summer months,” explained Scott, “we run a little light since school isn’t in and the Boy Scouts aren’t doing a whole lot. We don’t get nearly as much in donations, at least for the food pantry, just because there isn’t as much going on in the community.”

But the needs of the community do not abate during the hot season. “We take anything our community is willing to give,” continued Scott. “Nothing goes to waste. Anything that is donated to CCA either goes to the food pantry, or the clinic, or to one of our three thrift stores, which are really the main pillars of CCA’s financial support.”

In the coming year, Scott hopes to have launched the community garden project and get the clinic up and running on a full time basis. “My short experience with CCA has really been a blessing to me,” said Scott. “I just feel overwhelmed some days at how much this organization does, and I am glad to be a part of its management. God has given me enough in my life so far to be able to live comfortably. I feel like I get to serve out of the overflow of my heart, and I just want to help other people.”

For more information about Christian Community Action, visit

Ollie North and Pinhead Colmes get their Facts Faux'ed


Alan Colmes and Oliver North got smacked around by Dr. James Fetzer the other night. Fetzer is one of the founders of Scholars for 9/11 Truth. Watch this clip as they stumble all over themselves right out of the gate with "Faux'ed" research and insinuations that turned out to be completely off the mark.

Monday, July 10, 2006

9/11 Truth screening and lecture in Dallas

Come to the Lakewood Theater in Dallas on Saturday, July 22 at 7:30 p.m. for a screening of Loose Change 2nd Edition and 9/11 Revisited. Following the films, Dr. Morgan Reynolds, a leading member of Scholars for 9/11 Truth, will give a lecture regarding the coverup of the actual events that took place on Sept. 11, 2001.

Dr. Reynolds served as Chief Economist for the U.S. Dept. of Labor from 2001-2002, and is the author of Why Did the WTC Skyscrapers Collapse? and 9/11 Cold Case.

I'll be there, along with a host of my friends. I plan on writing about the lecture, and I am currently trying to get a sit-down interview with Dr. Reynolds as a feature for The Lone Star Iconoclast. I hope to see you there.

For more information on this event, click here.

United States of Whateva!

So, this flash video is a parody of G.W., but I can also see a lot of the 29 percent-ers liking it as well. Dig it.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Shrub-a-Dub-Dub, thanks for the Grub

The Webster Retort
By Stephen Webster
Investigative Reporter
July 14, 2006

Shrub-a-Dub-Dub, thanks for the Grub

Before thousands of ballots were discovered in a Florida swamp; before the GOP voter purge list was discovered to contain the names of thousands of African-Americans guilty of committing crimes in the future; before the Supreme Court appointed its very first president; before the nightmarish September atrocity; before the Taliban’s visit to Texas, and Osama’s Presidential Pardon; before the Weapons of Mass Distraction; before the Patriot Act and the cancellation of a majority of the Bill of Rights; before 2,500 plus troops fell to a vicious series of lies; before Camp Casey, Cindy Sheehan and the new Civil Rights Movement; before the plan for a North American Union, and before the erasure of the American Congress … Before all that, I was there.

I met the man, as a kid. I asked him a question, and posed for a photo. How naive I was.

Stephen C. Webster and George W. Bush, March 8, 1998.

Yes, I met George W. Bush in 1998, during his campaign for re-election to the office of Governor. The day was March 8. I was attending high school in a place called Brenham, a sparkling gem in the crown of what Sociologists call “White Flight.” In this small, Texas town, all the cows are happy, all the ice cream is Blue Bell, and all the coloreds are under thumb. I was sitting, as usual, in the Journalism lab, happily building the latest edition of The Cub Growl, our school newspaper.

Seemingly in a rush, my Journalism Professor, Allen Crenshaw, burst through the doorway. “The Governor is at Blinn!” he exclaimed. (Blinn College, a.k.a. “A&M Prep,” is the two-year school in Brenham, where I learned everything I didn’t need to know.) “What are you guys waiting for? Get over there!”

So, being the good Journalism students we were, a crew of us packed up and headed out to meet the Man Who Would Be King. At the time, I had no idea that I would be writing about the Age of Bush for so long. I was young, dumb and full of … well, chocolate milk, as the day was still within morning hours.

Walking into a ramshackle auditorium, packed collar to collar with the Good ‘Ole Boy Elite, I found myself standing head and shoulders above much of the crowd. As it is to this day, I top off at six-foot-four-inches, having been born at that height, much to my mother’s dismay and agony. An awkward little perp, you could spot me from across the room with little effort. Then, a silence swept through the hall. Chucklehead had arrived.

Dubya was plodding across the room, surrounded by a cowboy-hat’ed entourage. He clasped hands with every other person, grinning and hee-hawing and nodding his way through the crowd. I jumped out in front of him at the last minute, pointing to a camera perched on a tripod. We shuffled in together, side by side, and the flash ignited: a moment in time, preserved in photographic form. The black and white image rests on my newsroom perch to this very day.

Finally making his way to the small, hastily-built stage, the audience quieted and piled in as close as possible. He talked about “helping” the old and poor off welfare programs, and how he was going to “save Texas” with a tax cut. Even then, in my disinterested, little center-of-the-world head, I though he sounded insincere. Had I looked underneath those words - had I read between the lines - it would have translated as something more akin Mark Twain’s appraisal of the political archetype W was groomed to be ...

“I admit also that I am not a friend of the poor man,” wrote Twain at his most satiric. “I regard the poor man, in his present condition, as so much wasted raw material. Cut up and properly canned, he might be made useful to fatten the natives of the cannibal islands and to improve our export trade with that region. I shall recommend legislation upon the subject of my first message. My campaign cry will be: ‘Desiccate the poor workingman; stuff him into sausages.’”

Then, to my great shock, Bush opened up the session for questions from the press. All those around me raised hands, but mine stuck up higher. “You, with the shirt,” I remember him saying with a smirk, his stumpy index finger aimed right at me. Perhaps he thought it was clever to call on a high school student before a Houston Chronicle or Dallas Morning News reporter. But who was I to complain? I happily fired away.

“Mr. Bush,” I began. “If you could be either in the Texas Legislature, working to solve this state’s many problems, or at the Ballpark in Arlington, watching the Rangers play, which would you choose?”

His arms went up in a dunce shrug; that quirky, mischievous little grin he flashed just moments before announcing the start of the Iraq War plastered itself across his then youthful face. “Wul’ come on! I think it should be obvious,” he said.

“I’d be at the ballpark,” he exclaimed to a chorus of laughter. “I love them Rangers!”

That was the first and last time I spoke with Der Dummkopf-Kaiser.

Sadly, it seems the only thing that has changed about the man since then is the number of gray hairs on his head. But, I must say, sausage sure is cheap these days.

New Orleans, R.I.P.

Stephen Webster is an Investigative Reporter with North-Texas weekly The News Connection, a Staff Writer with George W. Bush's hometown paper The Lone Star Iconoclast, a Contributing Writer to Peace Journalism Magazine and The Bleeding Quill, a former contributor to The Dallas Morning News' Science & Technology section and the former Editor-in-Chief of Binary Culture.

Indicted phone jammer acting on W.H. orders?

From The Raw Story ...
Man indicted in phone jamming case will argue Administration approved election scheme
John Byrne
Published: Friday July 7, 2006

The fourth man indicted in a New Hampshire phone-jamming scheme -- in which Republican operatives jammed the phone lines of Democratic get-out-the-vote efforts in a 2002 Senate race -- will argue at trial that the Bush Administration and the national Republican Party gave their approval to the plan, according to a motion filed by his attorney Thursday.

Shaun Hansen, the former owner of the company that placed hang-up calls to jam Democratic phone lines, was indicted in March for conspiring to commit and aiding and abetting the commission of interstate telephone harassment relating to a scheme to thwart get out the vote efforts on Election Day, 2002.

His lawyer's motion signals that Hansen intends to argue that he was entrapped because the Administration allegedly told his superiors the calls were legal. The filing indicates, however, that Hansen does not have firsthand knowledge of Administration intervention.

Hansen’s lawyer offered an inside look of his defense strategy in yesterday's filing: his client will assert that he believed he was acting on behalf of the government and the Republican Party through his work with GOP Marketplace.
More here.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

The definition of a "Pig"

This makes me sick. What's next? Labor camps in the desert? Oh ... wait ... Damit.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Why am I not surprised?

President Bush answers questions from downrange
Says situations will determine troop levels

By Jeff Schogol, Stars and Stripes
Mideast edition, Wednesday, July 5, 2006

ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE — President Bush has met hundreds of families of fallen soldiers, but he has yet to attend a servicemember’s funeral, he said Tuesday.

“Because which funeral do you go to? In my judgment, I think if I go to one I should go to all. How do you honor one person but not another?” he said.

The appropriate way to express his appreciation to the family members of fallen troops is to meet with them in private, he said.

In an exclusive interview, Bush sat down with Stars and Stripes to answer questions solicited from U.S. troops now downrange, including the one asking whether he had ever attended a slain soldier’s funeral.

One soldier now serving in Iraq asked how many times he would have to return to the war zone in the next five years. Bush said he did not have an answer.

More ...

Coulter's plagarism problem(s)

From TPM Muckraker (I love these people) ...
Update: Company to Probe Coulter Plagiarism Charges
By Justin Rood - July 5, 2006, 2:35 PM

I heard back from Universal Press Syndicate's Kathie Kerr. Her company distributes Ann Coulter's column to over 100 newspapers around the country -- columns which, according to recent news, may have contained plagiarized material.

I had asked Kerr earlier this morning whether her company was taking any action in response to these published claims.

In an email, Kerr thanked me for bringing the assertions to UPS's attention, and asked me to get a copy of the report to them. "If Mr. Barrie would be so kind to send Lee Salem, President and Editor of Universal Press Syndicate his report, we will be happy to review it. Until we do, there's little we can say about it," she wrote me. John Barrie was the New York Post's expert source who claimed to have identified Coulter's plagiarized passages.

In my reply, I explained to Kerr that Barrie had been quoted not by me but by the New York Post, and perhaps that paper would be a good source of information. Kerr replied: "we have no contact information."

A few minutes later, however, Ms. Kerr located Barrie's contact information on the Web and said she would try to call him herself. Moments later, another email from Ms. Kerr arrived: "I've left Mr. Barrie a message."

Sounds like the Coulter plagiarism investigation is off to a flying start. I've put in a call myself to Mr. Barrie, and am waiting to hear back. I'll let you know what I find out.
More on Coulter's plagarism ...

Even more here (headline NSFW) ...

Monday, July 03, 2006

Federal Medical Marijuaua patient now on MySpace

George McMahon is a unique person. He is one of just seven people in the whole United States who cannot be arrested for using marijuana. He is a member of the FDA's Compassionate IND (Investigative New Drugs) program. He smokes ten government joints every day, grown in Uncle Sam's marijuana garden at Ole' Miss.

And, he just made his own MySpace profile! Check it out.

George has had more than his share of tough shakes in life. He's lived through over 19 major surgeries, and at one point was taking 17 different pharmaceutical substances every day. But, for the last 16 years he has lived on time borrowed from the sweet leaf. His life is literally sustained by the marijuana plant. Without it, he would be dead.

Don't believe me? Read the book Perscription Pot by George McMahon and Christopher Largen. It is an amazing story that will change your mind about the medicines we give our suffering masses.

The Weird, Turned Pro.

Created by The Gonzo Muckraker
Based in Dallas, Texas
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