Saturday, September 30, 2006

GOP House chiefs covering up for pedophile

This is amazing. The Washington Post is reporting that GOP Reps Boehner and Hastert BOTH knew about Rep. Foley's contact with young boys NEARLY SIX MONTHS AGO. What did they do about it? Nadda.

So, we've got a pedophile working as the GOP's front-line protector of children (link - explicit language - you've been warned), and two men in charge of the U.S. House of Representatives who would provide cover for the freak to continue this behavior.

These people are running our country? If you aren't outraged, you aren't human.

Almost better still, Rep. Foley, the pedophile, will have to remain on the Florida ballot.

You've got to love those down-home, Christian, family values. Yes, the Republican Party is truly the party of Jesus.

**Update ...
Oops. Forgot to mention Rep. Reynolds. He was also involved in the coverup. Looks like morality and the rule of law don't run quite as deep as party loyalty with these freaks.

Stick another ribbon up your SUV

Things have been pretty depressing in the United States lately ... At least, for those who have been paying attention. So to find such genuine humor in political stage performance is quite unique, and very needed.

Watch this and you will laugh.

God Bless the Asylum Street Spankers. I love these people.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Get Kinky

Today I had a sit-down interview with Kinky Friedman, Independent candidate for Texas Governor. The writeup will be out in a couple days. For now, here's a couple pictures I took.

The best portrait of any person I've done thus far in my career ...

The Muckraker 'Gets' Kinky. But does Kinky 'Get' The Muckraker?

As he likes to ask ... "Why the Hell Not?"

The Military Dictatorship of America

Tonight, I cry for my nation. Please watch this CNN report.

Excerpt from the torture laws

Here it is, folks. This is the line that Bush has drawn. Subsection 4(b) (26) of section 950v. of HR 6166 - Crimes triable by military commissions - includes the following definition ...
"Any person subject to this chapter who, in breach of an allegiance or duty to the United States, knowingly and intentionally aids an enemy of the United States, or one of the co-belligerents of the enemy, shall be punished as a military commission under this chapter may direct."
Terrorists do not have an allegiance or duty to the United States. They aren't even citizens. This is aimed directly at us, the dissenters; those who would stand as I have and say, "Mr. President, you are a despot, a fledgling dictator, and I will not accept your unconstitutional seizure of power."

Do that and, as of today, you can be "black-bagged," never to be seen again. The writ of Habeas Corpus? Gone. Your day in court? Gone. The right to see evidence presented against you? Gone.

This is a direct attack against the freedoms and liberties we, as LAW ABIDING AMERICAN CITIZENS, enjoy so greatly.

If "the terrorists" wanted to harm America, to change our way of life, and to take away our GOD GIVEN RIGHTS, then Bush has helped them more than any other person on the planet.

Out in the streets, America. Now is the time.

A defining moment for America

Bush just signed legislation declaring him above our laws, granting him exclusive powers to indefinitely detain and torture American citizens - up to and including the mutilation of a child's genitals in order to extract information from his or her parents (something that has already happened according to Investigative Reporter Seymour Hersh).

As mortifying as this certainly is, we are not done FIGHTING. If we leave now, they win. If we back down and do not get out in the streets, they win. If we abandon all hope, THEY WIN.


Join me and many others in the streets on Oct. 5. A large group of us will be staging a protest at the offices of Congressman Michael C. Burgess - Corporate Drive and I35E in Lewisville - from 2 p.m. through 6 p.m.

If you need a map, you can find one here.

If we are to save this nation from its self, we must get out into the streets. Now.

If you cannot make it to Lewisville on the 5th, just go to a highly trafficked area of your town, or to your county's courthouse, or to your city hall. Sit down and raise your sign. Participate in civil disobedience. GET ARRESTED, if you are prepared to do so.

I know it is a frightening prospect. But if we still believe that we are a good and decent people who respect the rule of law, we must. It is our duty. We are being called to this action by the very soul of our nation, and if we back down now, we are just as fragile and weak as they claim us to be.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Al-gebra agent arrested in U.S.

Be afraid, America.
NEW YORK, NY - A public school teacher was arrested today at John F. Kennedy International Airport as he attempted to board a flight while in possession of a ruler, a protractor, a set square, a slide rule, and a calculator.

At a morning press conference, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said he believes the man is a member of the notorious Al-gebra movement. He did not identify the man, who has been charged by the FBI with carrying weapons of math instruction.

"Al-gebra is a problem for us," Gonzales said. "They desire solutions by means and extremes, and sometimes go off on tangents in a search of absolute value. They use secret code names like 'x' and 'y' and refer to themselves as ' unknowns', but we have determined they belong to a common denominator of the axis of medieval with coordinates in every country. As the Greek philanderer Isosceles used to say, 'There are three sides to every triangle'."

When asked to comment on the arrest, President Bush said, "If God had wanted us to have better weapons of math instruction, He would have given us more fingers and toes."

White House aides told reporters they could not recall a more intelligent or profound statement by the president.

Woodward: Bush lies, covers up truth of war

I want this new book. It is called "State of Denia: Bush at War part III", by famed Washington Post Watergate reporter Bob Woodward. Here's a few key points ...
The Administration is not telling the truth about the state of Iraq. Attacks against American soldiers in Iraq occur every 15 minutes. There are over 900 attacks a week. Over 100 per day. More than four an hour. And the situation is getting worse by the minute.

Bush and Cheney meet with Henry Kissinger frequently. Kissenger was Nixon's Sec. of State. Woodward says Kissinger is trying to fight Vietnam all over again. Vietraq? Uh-huh.

According to Woodward, Bush told a group of high-ranking Republicans in the Oval Office, "I will not withdraw, even if Laura and Barney are the only ones supporting me." [Unfortunately for Bush, his dog Barney is a Methodist, and withdrew his support of the war several weeks ago.]
And I'm sure there is much, much more. Woodward's previous book, "Bush at War", was fantastic, informative, and very fair, in my opinion. I would hope this book is up to the same standard.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

What the f**k is wrong with The Post?

The New York Post is run by lunatics.

Today's edition makes fun of Keith Olbermann's recent brush with death by anthrax. Turns out the white powder letter he got was nothing more than soap shavings, but certainly these people are journalists too! How could they find something of that nature to be humorus? Here's the editorial, which ran under the title "Powder Puff Spooks Keith" ...
MSNBC loudmouth Keith Olbermann flipped out when he opened his home mail yesterday. The acerbic host of "Countdown with Keith Olbermann" was terrified when he opened a suspicious-looking letter with a California postmark and a batch of white powder poured out. A note inside warned Olbermann, who's a frequent critic of President Bush's policies, that it was payback for some of his on-air shtick.

The caustic commentator panicked and frantically called 911 at about 12:30 a.m., sources told The Post's Philip Messing. An NYPD HazMat unit rushed to Olbermann's pad on Central Park South, but preliminary tests indicated the substance was harmless soap powder. However, that wasn't enough to satisfy Olbermann, who insisted on a checkup. He asked to be taken to St. Luke's Hospital, where doctors looked him over and sent him home. Whether they gave him a lollipop on the way out isn't known. Olbermann had no comment.
I think I know why they're acting like fascist freaks -- Olbermann frequently calls Bill O'Reilly, and other Faux News personalities, on their blatant lies. Faux News is owned by media mogul Rupert Murdoch's company News Corporation, which also owns The New York Post. It doesn't take too much of a leap to put two and two together.

Hm. I wonder if MySpace will let me post this as a bulletin. That's a Murdoch company as well. Isn't media consolidation just King?

On a serious note, my sympathies go out to Keith Olbermann, who is one of the most brave, articulate, unflinching news men in America today. He has my undying respect, and I hope this incident has not shaken him into hiding.

Keep up your good work, Keith. You are needed, and loved by many; this muckraker included.

71 arrested for peace

Heros are among us. This morning on CNN ...
Peaceful Iraq war protests prompt 71 arrests

Two Presbyterian ministers were among 71 people arrested during a series of peaceful protests against the Iraq war Tuesday, said a spokeswoman for a group participating in the protests.

Demonstrators held sit-ins, prayer services and sing-alongs at four locations in the Capitol complex, including the central atrium of the Senate Hart Office Building.

The demonstrations were reminiscent of the Vietnam era, with protesters strumming guitars, singing peace songs, holding flowers and wearing hats made of balloons.

Senate staffers watched the demonstrators from their offices. Protesters said that several workers gave them a thumbs-up or other signs of approval.

"We are trying to protest a lack of civil liberties and to try and end a war culture," said protester Alex Bryan of New York.

Thirty-three of those arrested were charged with unlawful conduct inside the Hart Building, said Sgt. Kimberly Schneider of the Capitol Police.

Thirty-eight more demonstrators were arrested at separate protests near the Capitol, she said. Of those, 23 were charged with crossing a police line and 15 were charged with demonstrating without a permit.

All of those arrested were cooperative with police, Schneider said.

The National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance, which has organized dozens of anti-war protests around the country, coordinated Tuesday's effort, which included several religious and secular groups.

Among those arrested during the demonstrations were two Presbyterian ministers, a Catholic activist and a member of a Quaker group, said Jennifer Kuiper, spokeswoman for The Declaration of Peace, one of the groups participating in the protests.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Paper ballots at the 11th hour?

Senators Boxer and Dodd are standing up for American's right to vote by proposing an amendment to the Help America Vote Act that offers federal funding to states and counties that wish to make paper ballots an option for voters.

We need to support this.

Haw-haw-haw, snort* guffaw*

I love Tom Tomorrow.

Republican candidate calls for Bush to be arrested

Former Army Lieutenant and candidate for Congress in Vermont, Dennis Morrisseau, today called for the arrest of President Bush and Vice President Cheney by the American military "if necessary" to prevent an unauthorized attack upon the nation of Iran.

The antiwar Vietnam vet is a Republican, but he has won approval from the State of Vermont to run on the ballot line “Impeach Bush Now,” rather than Democrat or Republican.

"American forces are apparently already active inside Iran, and Naval forces have received orders to deploy to that country," Morrisseau said. "The President has NO AUTHORITY to attack the nation of Iran whatsoever, in the absence of a full, formal Declaration of War on Iran by the sitting Congress."

Morrisseau said any order for an attack upon Iran or to deploy naval forces to its coastal waters is illegal, and called upon officers of the American military to "First, refuse to obey such an order. If the president persists and insists on ordering our forces into combat in or over Iran without a formal Declaration of War, then I call upon you, General Pace, as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and upon such other military officers as clearly see their duty in these circumstances to detain both the President and Vice President, until such time as the Congress shall act."
Big, brass swingers. And in Vermont, talk like that just might get you elected. And there's so much more.

George W. Bush is a Methodist ...

... according to his own statements. But now, George's own Methodist church has called for an end to his war.

From the article ...
Speakers at the Washington DC rally accuse the President of lying about Iraq possessing weapons of mass destruction and launching what they called an illegal offensive.

"Our demand as a movement is to end the war now," said Bishop Morrison. The declaration calls the situation in Iraq "an endless fire consuming lives, resources and the fragile possibilities of peace."
Looks like there are real Christians out there after all. Welcome back, friends. We've missed you.


Obvious headline of the day ...
Americans look for political manipulation as gas prices plunge
Duh ...

Monday, September 25, 2006

What is water-boarding?

In this short video clip, taken from the Robin Williams film Jacob the Liar, German troops are seen "water-boarding" their captive. The technique of water-boarding has been used for many years by the Mafia and other lawless organizations. And if the Republican Congress and George W. Bush get their way, this, and many other far worse forms of "questioning" will be legally sanctioned to be performed by U.S. interrorgators.

Protesters disrupt the Senate

Incredible. Check this out.

Anti-torture demonstrators disrupted a public hearing in the Senate today. We should revere these people. They are patriots of the highest order.

Barnwell revs campaign down home stretch

By Stephen Webster
Investigative Reporter
For The News Connection, Sept. 29, 2006 edition

Make no bones about it; Tim Barnwell faces an uphill battle.

Barnwell, holder of an MBA from the University of Dallas and a former educator, is running against incumbent Congressman Michael Burgess to represent Texas’ 26th district in Washington D.C. Since he kicked off his campaign this past March, his financial contributions have paled in comparison to his opponent, who has spent over $1 million this campaign season, but very little on actual campaigning.

Photo by Stephen Webster
Barnwell speaks with a voter at the Bartonville Spirit Festival on Sept. 23.

“Congressman Burgess is really moving a lot of dollars,” said Barnwell during an interview on Sept. 23. “What he is doing is perfectly legal, but in my opinion, rather disingenuous. He is taking in a lot of campaign dollars from corporate interests like the oil industry and the pharmaceutical industry, TXU and Exxon and Pfizer specifically, then moving it all back out to other Republican candidates, like Katherine Harris in Florida, or Tom DeLay’s legal defense fund.”

Barnwell’s campaign slogan, “Not for Sale”, is a message he hopes to drive home right through Election Day on Nov. 7.

“[Burgess] even gave money to Randy ‘Duke’ Cunningham, the Republican Congressman from California who admitted to being a crook,” added Barnwell. “That guy is in jail now, you know. He took $2.5 million in bribes, and our representative is giving him money? What could he possibly need that for?”

Financial data from The Center for Responsive Politics confirms Barnwell’s claims.

War: the most important issue
Barnwell sees the most important issue to the voters of District 26 as being the war in Iraq, and his opinion on the war is gives voters a true differentiation to current policy.

“To ensure the peace, we must pull our troops back, across the horizon,” said Barnwell. “We must keep them in the region so they can be called upon when they are needed, but it is necessary to bring in the international community. We cannot and will not abandon Iraq. But in order to decrease the violence, we must get the troops off the streets and provide the Iraqi people more humanitarian aid.”

Barnwell’s biggest problem with the current Congress is the Republicans’ reluctance to exercise their constitutional duty to conduct oversight of the administration. He also takes issue with placing loyalty to political parties over loyalty to the nation.

“Congress alone has the right to declare war,” he said. “The President can say war all he wants, but until the Congress declares war, it ain’t there. From what I understand, there are already military operations going forward in Iran, and this is similar to what happened in Iraq. Way before the President announced the invasion, we had Special Forces in country, and we were carpet bombing. This is a problem. We have a Congress that has abdicated its constitutional duty of oversight. Congressman Burgess is simply telling the people what the administration told him to say. That is what his entire career has sounded like to me. It is one thing to be loyal to your president and party. But we have to put our country first.”

“We’ve got a lot to do in this nation,” continued Barnwell. “Our foreign relations have suffered dramatically over the last six years. It has been oft’ said, the day after 9/11, everybody was on our side throughout the world. Out of the tragedy came a moment of hope we have not seen since the closing days of World War II. But it was squandered by the President and his zealots; shamelessly squandered. It may take a generation for the world to regain trust in our nation. It is really that serious. We are but a member of this planet. We have to remember that power used wisely is a boon for human kind. Power not used wisely makes us just another bully on the playground.”

No gray area on torture
Barnwell also takes issue with the practice of torture during interrogations. “With a lot of issues, there are vast gray areas,” he said. “Torture, I do not believe, is one of them … What the president ordered is a violation of the Geneva Conventions, which was signed by the United States many years ago and is the supreme law of the land according to the Constitution. Now the President and the Republican Congress wish to go back and retroactively change the law to exempt the President from being held accountable breaking the law.”

He compared this to being given a speeding ticket, then having it rescinded six months later because the speed limit had changed.

“The President can say until he’s blue in the face that his Attorney General thought he was within the law,” said Barnwell. “But the Attorney General is not the law. The Supreme Court and our Constitution is. The lower courts disagree with the president. Top brass in the armed forces and politicians, including Republicans, who have experience in the military disagree with the president. It is a disaster for our troops. Every time we lower the bar, it makes it much easier for our enemies to justify their cruel and inhumane treatment of our troops and non-combatants.”

“During World War II, many of the Germans we captured were treated so well that they fought to stay in the United States and become citizens at the end of the war,” continued Barnwell. “We can’t say that now. Not with people being arrested and drug off to secret locations in third-world countries where God knows what is being done to them. Besides, most military leaders claim that torture doesn’t work. Why are the President and his Attorney General so obsessed with inhuman treatment? And why does so much of it focus on sexual degradation? It is deeply troubling, the almost child-like emphasis on cruelty toward people who have not been convicted of a crime. It is reprehensible behavior, and I deeply chastise my opponent for supporting this lawlessness.”

Health care a moral issue
Barnwell also offered his adamant support to a national health care program.

“Every time I talk to a doctor or a nurse, they say that they know that a national health care program is coming,” he said. “My philosophy is, we need to get as many health care experts as possible together in Washington and argue it out. We must get not just a good national health care program, but the best national health care plan in the world. For 40 or 50 years, we’ve abdicated this responsibility by putting it on our corporations. Now, our corporations are suffering. One area where we can help the business community is by lifting the burden of supplying health care for their employees.”

Photo by Stephen Webster
Barnwell finds another couple in Bartonville curious about his candidacy.

“Understand, this must be a national effort,” he continued. “One out of every four children in the state of Texas does not have health insurance. Even in our very wealthy district, you can bet your bottom dollar that average is the same here. I tell people, politicians for decades have been touting the small business as the backbone of our economy. Small business cannot compete with major corporations in offering health care. It is just not financially possible. Now, my greatest joy will be to announce the beginning of a national health care program, that way the man or woman operating the small business down the street, be it a software company or a windshield replacement company, will be able to hire the person who wants to work there, not just the person who can work there because they don’t worry about health insurance, or their spouse has health insurance.”

“Now the reporter can go to work for the small paper in the small community and not have to go to the corporate paper in the large community, just because he or she can get health care benefits there,” said Barnwell. “Teachers, who in our state have suffered under poor health care benefit programs, will be alleviated of that stress. The list is endless. The reason someone goes to work for a company will be more because the work is something they want to do, not because a different company offers good benefits, regardless of whether or not they are interested in doing that kind of work. Our companies will benefit. Our people will benefit. The nation will benefit.”

Election presents a real choice
“With all their bluster and might, the Republican lead Congress has done very poorly for the state of Texas,” concluded Barnwell. “We are a mighty state with an enormous population. For years now, we’ve contributed more to the federal funds packages than we’ve received back. During the 70’s, we were able to build the LBJ Freeway without toll roads. We were even able to enlarge the state highway, known as Central Expressway, without tolls. As I like to point out, we have a true choice this November. You can either go for the LBJ Freeway, or you can go for the George Bush Tollway.”

“When - not if, but when - the good people of District 26 elect me to office, I swear an oath not to the president, and I swear an oath not to the party,” said Barnwell. “I swear an oath to uphold the constitution of the United States of America. My job in the House of Representatives will be to maintain oversight of the executive branch, and over our finances, to see that our money is spent wisely, and to see that our troops are deployed wisely. I will fulfill that charge to the best of my ability, and will not be servant to the administration or party leadership.”

Hutchison on Somalia

On Oct. 6, 1993, Texas Senator Kay Hutchison said the following ...
I supported our original mission, which was humanitarian in nature and limited in scope. I can no longer support a continued United States presence in Somalia because the nature of the mission is now unrealistic and because the scope of our mission is now limitless. . . . Mr. President, it is no small feat for a superpower to accept setback on the world stage, but a step backward is sometimes the wisest course. I believe that withdrawal is now the more prudent option.
What happened to that person?

Clinton throws down the gauntlet

Justified anger.

Watch the video at the link above. Clinton went on Faux News Sunday (just yesterday) and set the record straight on terrorism and what his administration did to capture or kill bin Laden.

You have never seen an ex-President get this angry at a news man.

But, he's right to have treated the situation like that. The guy was running a hit job on him, and Clinton wasn't going to sit there and let him insinuate that he was responsible for the attacks of 9/11. Mo' power to him.

Congress: Classroom Activities

From today's Daily Show Page-a-Day calendar ...
"Find out each representative's 'porn name' by adding the name of the largest city in their district to the name of their state flower!
Ben Chandler, D-KY = 'Frankfort Goldenrod'"

Friday, September 22, 2006

Bill Maher on Willie Nelson

This article is hi-larious. Here's an excerpt ...
This week, Willie Nelson, whom Donald Rumsfeld calls the "number two man in al-Qaeda" - was the victim of a pointless search that revealed he had with him a mere pound and a half of marijuana and a fifth of a pound of psychedelic mushrooms - or as Willie calls it, breakfast.

That's right, cops in Louisiana pulled over his tour bus and searched it based on probable cause, the probable cause being it contained Willie Nelson. The Fuzz then hassled Willie, demanded he cut his hair and shot Peter Fonda off his motorcycle. I mean, Louisiana, come on, your state was under water a year ago - if the man wants some of it for his bong, let him. Yes, he had mushrooms - he's a hundred year old hippie, they were growing in his hair.

Read it!

Remember when ...

Remember when Condeleeza Rice and Colon Powell were saying that Iraq is not a threat and they have no WMD's?


Here's a painful little video clip that seems to have been washed from the national memory, coming at you from back in the good old days of early 2001 ...

A way around the electoral college?

Sounds good to me! From the article in today's New York Times ...
Now, a 63-year-old eminence among computer scientists who teaches genetic programming at Stanford, Dr. Koza has decided to top off things with an end run on the Constitution. He has concocted a plan for states to skirt the Electoral College system legally to insure the election of whichever presidential candidate receives the most votes nationwide.

“When people complain that it’s an end run,” Dr. Koza said, “I just tell them, ‘Hey, an end run is a legal play in football.’ ’’

The first fruit of his effort, a bill approved by the California legislature that would allocate the state’s 55 electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote, sits on Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s desk. The governor has to decide by Sept. 30 whether to sign it, a decision that may well determine whether Dr. Koza’s scheme takes flight or becomes another relic in the history of efforts to kill the Electoral College.
I hope it works. If we didn't have the electoral college, the people's choice in 2000, Al Gore, might still be our president and we wouldn't be involved in this madness in Iraq. Cross your fingers.

Why drugs will never be legal

Will currently illegal drugs ever be made legal? Probably not, and it isn't for the reasons that you think.

Watch this Dateline NBC Special, which explains how the CIA has been running an illegal drug racket in this country.

As Peter Sellers might have said, "It'll tighten your wig."

Air America Dallas - gone on Oct. 1

The date is now confirmed. Air America Dallas will go off the air on Oct. 1, 2006. From GRNonline ...
GRN to turn on two Catholic Radio Stations (English and Spanish) in Dallas Fort Worth on Sunday, October 1st.

Yes, it's official. After many years of waiting and anticipation, DFW will soon be home to not only one, but two Catholic Radio Stations. The home of English language Catholic Radio will be KXEB 910 AM and the home of Spanish language Catholic Radio will be KJON 850 AM (sunrise to sunset).

Go Kinky!

Kinky Friedman, Independent candidate for Texas Governor, has come under attack by both Republicans and the one Democrat recently. The aim is to paint him as a racist, which I personally know to be untrue. Today, his campaign has responded, and responded well. Here's what they said ...
Friends and neighbors,

While Rick Perry was cheerleading in college and Chris Bell was being potty trained, Kinky Friedman was picketing segregated restaurants in Austin to integrate them. Now that Kinky’s in second place and a serious threat to the two-party system, Perry and Bell have paid political assassins to dig back as far as 30 years through fictional books, comedy shows and song lyrics, desperately seeking to paint Kinky as a racist.

Republicans and Democrats have created an entire industry -- called Opposition Research -- whose sole purpose is to tarnish and destroy people’s reputations. This is why regular citizens don't run for office. If you do, and you start to threaten the system as Kinky has, you’re going to be attacked.

Kinky has overcome all of the obstacles placed before him -- getting on the ballot, raising millions of dollars, building the largest grassroots network Texas has ever seen, and breaking 20% in the polls months ago. He's a serious threat to the establishment, and when you threaten the political establishment, they use the money generated from their formidable fundraising machines to pay for "dirty tricks" tactics to manipulate the press.

It's a slimy industry that exists for the sole purpose of destroying people and -- like cockroaches -- scurries for the shadows whenever a light is shined on it.

The latest political assassination attempt takes completely out of context a controversial word that Kinky was using in a 1980 stand-up performance to lampoon racists. Playing a character on stage, Kinky was exposing bigotry through comedy and satire.

It’s pathetic that the major-party candidates have sunk to this -- trying to paint Kinky as a racist when, in fact, he was poking fun at racists. Shame on the press for being complicit. Rather than confront our opponents on their tactics and get the full story, they are allowing industries like opposition research to exist and operate outside the understanding of most voters.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

HBO's "Baghdad E.R."

This video is 64 minutes long, and contains very graphic images. I advise discression, but it is something that needs to be seen by anyone with the stomach. This show was produced by HBO. It is called "Baghdad E.R." You can watch it in the video window below, or click here to see it full screen.


If you know me, you know I am not a big fan of Alex Jones. However, I did find his most recent film to be his best. Now it is available free on Google Video. It is a chronicle of government-sponsored terrorism, starting in the early 1900's, leading right up through present day.

Watch it. It is worth your time.

How to: Get a paper ballot this November

Most informed members of this Republic remember what happened during the Nov., 2000 Presidential election. Republicans in Texas, where one Bush was Governor, compiled a list of "criminals" who had moved to Florida, governed by another Bush, from the Lone Star State. These individuals were to be purged from the rolls, thereby making their potential ballots null and void.

The scheme worked. 57,700 voters were removed from the list. Most of them were black (I.E. Democratic base), and most of them had never committed crimes.

Recently, Princeton University demonstrated how simple it is to hack one of Diebold's electronic voting machines, completely flipping an election and leaving no trace behind. Clearly, this is a dire threat to our democracy.

Denton County, where I and many of this blog's readers live, recently switched to the Hart InterCivic eSlate machines, which is supposed to make it easier for disabled people to vote. What we know: in Tarrant county, just a few miles away, these machines added an additional 100,000 votes to the recent Republican and Democrat primary elections.

Given the chances for out-and-out fraud in this upcoming, very crucial election, it is up to us, the voters who will DEMAND change, to ensure our votes are cast on PAPER BALLOTS. But it isn't so simple as just asking for one at your polling place.

To vote on paper, in most states, you will have to get an absentee ballot, and you have to get it as soon as possible. This requires you to actually do something before the election, so take note!

To get your absentee ballot, no matter where you live -- ANYWHERE IN THE UNITED STATES -- click here. You have to have a voter registration card, because they will ask you for a Precinct Number. If you do not have this card yet, go to your nearest post office and DO SO!

If you live in Denton County and you wish to vote on an absentee ballot, there are a couple steps ... First! Read the official instructions. (PDF format)

Second! Print this application (also PDF format), and MAIL IT IN! This must be received by the elections administrator by Oct. 31, 2006, or you will have to go to the polls and risk voting on an eSlate.

If you follow these steps, you will be casting a paper ballot this November. You will be helping to protect the Republic. So do it, and let's make some real change. The leaders must adhere to the vote of the people. Do not let them take that from you. Cast a paper ballot.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Most Americans hate the Congress

How ... reasonable!

77 Percent of America thinks their current congressperson should not be reelected. So sayeth The New York Times.

Air America Dallas no more? - UPDATE

An update on Air America Dallas going off the air ...

The story, broken by your Faithful Muckraker, has now been picked up by our good friends at D Magazine.

Further correspondence with Nancy Cunningham reveals a slight error in the previous post. About 50 percent of Air America affiliates around the country are on Clear Channel stations. So, perhaps there is a chance of flipping one of them, especially since the Dallas Air America station was turning a profit.

Furthermore, a similar situation cropped up in Phoenix this past February. The station, even though it was turning a profit, was bought up by a Christian broadcasting company, much like Air America Dallas. It went off the air on March 6. By April 3, it was back, albeit on a different channel. Local businesses donated funds and several wealthy investors pooled their money and revived the channel.

For all you North Texans who are Blue at Heart, keep the faith! Air America Dallas might be gone for a little while, but with some hard work, a lot of phone calls, and a couple wealthy individuals of like-mind, it will be back.

Now, get to work and bring this station back! The elections are just around the corner.

Air America Dallas no more?

Bad news for talk radio fans who turn left of the dial. You heard it here first ...

Air America Radio Dallas, KXEB 910 AM, has been sold by the Border Media Group.

The station's Sales Manager, Tony Migura, just confirmed it to me on the phone.

"Yes, it is true. The station has been sold," he said. "Call me tomorrow and we'll do a whole press release." He refused to answer any further questions.

The buyer is the Catholic Global Radio Network. No word on when the changeover will take place, but my sources say it could happen as soon as Oct. 1, 2006.

This news came to me through several of Air America Dallas' advertisers, including multiple Congressional campaigns. Though referred to as "rumor" by Nancy Cunningham, who manages Dallas AAR's website, the situation looks grim for progressive talk radio in North Texas.

"No, there would be nothing we can do to change the mind of Border Media," said Cunningham. "But we could work to get a Clear Channel station to flip."

The sentiment seems unlikely, given the general right-wing bent of the Clear Channel corporation.

Despite recent reports from KXEB of a steadily-expanding market share, it seems as though my primary source in this story, who asked to remain anonymous, is right:

"All radio stations are always for sale, all the time. That's just the way it is. As heartbreaking, and certainly timely, as this may be, it will not stop the advancement of Progressive politics in North Texas."

For the foreseeable future, it looks like North Texas Progressives will have to stick with XM Satelite Radio or live web streams for their Air America Radio fix.

Before you enlist ...

Watch this video about military recruiters. If you haven't heard this before, it might just whipe that wax right out of your ears ...

Free Sticker Love

I loves me some free stickers. Here's one that is on its way as I write this ...

Get yours here!

Chavez to UN: "It smells of sulfur still"

As I read the transcript of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez' speech to the United Nations yesterday, I find myself both thoroughly entertained and thoroughly disturbed.

He called Bush "Satan," and claimed "It smells of sulfur still today." He talked about the ineffectiveness of the United Nations, and the immorality of American hegemony. He even touted Noam Chomfsky's book, "Hegemony or Survival: The Imperialist Strategy of the United States", which I am going to re-purchase and re-read, thanks to Mr. Chavez.

And you know what? He makes a lot of sense. But I find myself disturbed because I am a member of the nation he speaks of, and while I too look around myself and see these things going on, I fear what this speech may have unleashed. Members of the United Nations applauded him. Laughed at his jokes. Stood to support his efforts. Russia and China included.

Where does that leave us? Isolated. That's where. Its just us and the U.K. Great.

He did not call for the nations to draw arms, which is good. He emphasized peace, eradication of poverty, and true democracy, not democracy at gunpoint. And he had this one great quote ...
The president of the United States, yesterday, said to us, right here, in this room, and I'm quoting, "Anywhere you look, you hear extremists telling you can escape from poverty and recover your dignity through violence, terror and martyrdom."

Wherever he looks, he sees extremists. And you, my brother -- he looks at your color, and he says, oh, there's an extremist. Evo Morales, the worthy president of Bolivia, looks like an extremist to him.

The imperialists see extremists everywhere. It's not that we are extremists. It's that the world is waking up. It's waking up all over. And people are standing up.

I have the feeling, dear world dictator, that you are going to live the rest of your days as a nightmare because the rest of us are standing up, all those who are rising up against American imperialism, who are shouting for equality, for respect, for the sovereignty of nations.
It is one of the sharpest rebukes of American foreign policy over the last 60 years, and it should have come much sooner if you ask me.

Some of you might accuse me of being disloyal. I would imagine you are the "My country right or wrong" type. But in America, every person STILL has the right to freedom of speech and ideas. Just because I disagree, ADAMANTLY, with the actions of this government, does not mean I do not love my country. This is loyalty through dissent; a venerable national past-time; the very foundation of America.

I would encourage you to read Chavez' speech. He takes a couple cheap shots at Bush (the "devil" remark), but makes numerous points that echo the sentiments of the American people ... And run completely counter to the intent of our current government.

You can find the speech here, for the time being. If the link goes down, I'll find it elsewhere and repost.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The "If We Like You" strategy

I just got a solicitation for donations to the DCCC from Governor Howard Dean. The Democrats have what they're calling a "50 state strategy". I offered a response to the Governor. Hopefully he takes it to heart. Here's what I said ...
Governor Dean,

I appreciate the idea of a 50 state strategy. But it seems that is not the case. I would ask you to either include Texas in this, or rename the plan. You see, I live in the 26th Congressional District of Texas. Tim Barnwell is the nominee this election year, and he has yet to get a DIME of support from the DCCC. I believe he actually has a chance in this, an "unwinable" district.

The last Democrat to run here was Lico Reyes. He did not campaign at all. He got zero media. And in 2004, he attracted nearly 40 percent of the votes. To call TX-26 unwinable is defeatism, plain and simple. His opponent, Michael C. Burgess, has spent over $1 million this campaign season, but none of it was for his "campaign." He has been laundering the money to other Republicans, such as Katherine Harris, Duke Cunningham and Tom DeLay.

There is hope here. Don't you see it?

I hope the party will either live up to the 50 state strategy and support ALL the candidates, or re-name it to something better, like the "Swing States Only strategy," or the "If We Like You strategy". Both seem to better summarize the reality of your plan.

I'm still voting for a Democrat this year, but it isn't very nice to hang your own out to dry.

Stephen Webster
The News Connection

Tortured innocence

This is sick. If Bush gets his way on his little torture legislation, and the Congress changes the laws in order to let him off for crimes he's already committed, we'll be seeing a lot more of this.
Canadian was falsely accused, panel says
Muslim held by U.S. was sent to Syria for interrogation

TORONTO, Sept. 18 - Canadian intelligence officials passed false warnings and bad information to American agents about a Muslim Canadian citizen, after which U.S. authorities secretly whisked him to Syria, where he was tortured, a judicial report found Monday.

The report, released in Ottawa, was the result of a 2 1/2-year inquiry that represented one of the first public investigations into mistakes made as part of the United States' "extraordinary rendition" program, which has secretly spirited suspects to foreign countries for interrogation by often brutal methods.
Arar, now 36, was detained by U.S. authorities as he changed planes in New York on Sept. 26, 2002. He was held for questioning for 12 days, then flown by jet to Jordan and driven to Syria. He was beaten, forced to confess to having trained in Afghanistan -- where he never has been -- and then kept in a coffin-size dungeon for 10 months before he was released, the Canadian inquiry commission found.

O'Connor concluded "categorically there is no evidence" that Arar did anything wrong or was a security threat.

Although the report centered on Canadian actions, the counsel for the commission, Paul Cavalluzzo, said the results show that the U.S. practice of renditions "ought to be reviewed."

"This is really the first report in the Western world that has had access to all of the government documents we wanted and saw the practice of extraordinary rendition in full color," he said in an interview from Ottawa. "The ramifications were that an innocent Canadian was tortured, his life was put upside down, and it set him back years and years."
There's more here.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Drug Policy?

Here's a video shot in 2003 at a high school in Goose Creek, South Carolina. A SWAT team raided the place and held students at gunpoint, all on a hunch that someone in the school had drugs.

They found no drugs. The principal of the school was forced to resign, and the cops were sued, and the plaintiff won. Here's why ...

Is this what our drug policy is becoming? Scenes like this will become commonplace should H.R. 5295 pass Congress tomorrow. Our great House of Representatives feels it is necessary to strip all students of their constitutional rights by giving police unfettered ability to conduct raids of this sort, all in the name of fighting the War on Drugs.

If you don't want to see more scenes like the video above, send your Congressman/woman a letter. It just takes a second. We don't need our schools turning into prisons.

Donkey Fest

So, this last Saturday night I attended the Denton County Donkey Fest. I was there to interview Chris Bell, Democratic candidate for Governor, but I ran into a couple other well-known candidates as well. Atop my list of "cool people" is definitely David Van O's, who has the best campaign slogan ever ...

"Notice to Big Oil: I'm Coming After You."


Here's some pictures. I'll have a full write-up on my talk with Bell in the next edition of The News Connection ...

Photo by Stephen Webster
Van O's, running for Texas Attorney General

Actual quote ...
"Well hell, The Lone Star Iconoclast is one of my very favorite newspapers!"

Photo by Stephen Webster
Chris Bell for Governor


On Friday, Bush made a very strange comment during his pitch to make torture an American Institution. Talking about 9/11, he said ...

"For example, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed described the design of planned attacks of buildings inside the U.S. and how operatives were directed to carry them out. That is valuable information for those of us who have the responsibility to protect the American people. He told us the operatives had been instructed to ensure that the explosives went off at a high -- a point that was high enough to prevent people trapped above from escaping."

Huh? Explosives? A Point that was high enough? I thought the controlled demolition theory was just "Liberal Lunacy." What, exactly, is our president tryint to say here?

**Update ...

For additional context, here's an excerpt from a little later in the speech. (Even MORE context, here's the entire speech.)
"... but sometimes you actually have to question the people who know the strategy and plans of the enemy. And in this case, we questioned people like Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who we believe ordered the attacks on 9/11."

Electile Dysfunction?

Be vigilant, America. We're in for a bumpy ride. From The Washington Post ...
An overhaul in how states and localities record votes and administer elections since the Florida recount battle six years ago has created conditions that could trigger a repeat -- this time on a national scale -- of last week's Election Day debacle in the Maryland suburbs, election experts said.

In the Nov. 7 election, more than 80 percent of voters will use electronic voting machines, and a third of all precincts this year are using the technology for the first time. The changes are part of a national wave, prompted by the federal Help America Vote Act of 2002 and numerous revisions of state laws, that led to the replacement of outdated voting machines with computer-based electronic machines, along with centralized databases of registered voters and other steps to refine the administration of elections.

But in Maryland last Tuesday, a combination of human blunders and technological glitches caused long lines and delays in vote-counting. The problems, which followed ones earlier this year in Ohio, Illinois and several other states, have contributed to doubts among some experts about whether the new systems are reliable and whether election officials are adequately prepared to use them.

In a polarized political climate, in which elections are routinely marked by litigation and allegations of incompetent administration or outright tampering, some worry that voting problems could cast a Florida-style shadow over this fall's midterm elections.

"We could see that control of Congress is going to be decided by races in recount situations that might not be determined for several weeks," said Paul S. DeGregorio, chairman of the federal Election Assistance Commission, although he added that he does not expect problems of this magnitude.

A personal note: If we have another election a la Florida, circa 2000, I'm out in the streets. I hope you'll be with me. It is unacceptable for this to be happening, and if there is any serious doubt about the final counts in the 2006 mid-terms, it is our duty to participate in widespread demonstrations. The people want change, and this year's vote will be a sweep for the minority party. Make no bones about it; if the votes are not counted correctly and some races take weeks to determine, we must take to the streets and make our voices heard. The message is simple: Change. Now.

Neo-Nazis win some elections in Germany

Keep your eyes and ears open for more on this disturbing trend.

Big Brother speaks

Big Brother is completely out of control in the U.K. Remember, Remember, the Eleventh of September? Or just read this article ...
Big Brother is not only watching you - now he's barking orders too. Britain's first 'talking' CCTV cameras have arrived, publicly berating bad behaviour and shaming offenders into acting more responsibly.

The system allows control room operators who spot any anti-social acts - from dropping litter to late-night brawls - to send out a verbal warning: 'We are watching you'.

Middlesbrough has fitted loudspeakers on seven of its 158 cameras in an experiment already being hailed as a success. Jack Bonner, who manages the system, said: 'It is one hell of a deterrent. It's one thing to know that there are CCTV cameras about, but it's quite another when they loudly point out what you have just done wrong.

'Most people are so ashamed and embarrassed at being caught they quickly slink off without further trouble.

'There was one incident when two men started fighting outside a nightclub. One of the control room operators warned them over the loudspeakers and they looked up, startled, stopped fighting and scarpered in opposite directions.

'This isn't about keeping tabs on people, it's about making the streets safer for the law-abiding majority and helping to change the attitudes of those who cause trouble. It challenges unacceptable behaviour and makes people think twice.'

The Mail on Sunday watched as a cyclist riding through a pedestrian area was ordered to stop.

'Would the young man on the bike please get off and walk as he is riding in a pedestrian area,' came the command.

The surprised youth stopped, and looked about. A look of horror spread across his face as he realised the voice was referring to him.

He dismounted and wheeled his bike through the crowded streets, as instructed.

Law-abiding shopper Karen Margery, 40, was shocked to hear the speakers spring into action as she walked past them.

Afterwards she said: 'It's quite scary to realise that your every move could be monitored - it really is like Big Brother.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Kinky: Legalize "IT"

Kinky Friedman is either very bold, very stupid, or both. I'm inclined to believe the first. Here's why ...
Kinky Friedman says he favors legalizing marijuana to keep nonviolent users out of prison. If Texas elects him governor, he says, he'll try to get locked-up pot users released to make room for more violent criminals.

"I think that's long overdue," Friedman told The Associated Press in an interview Wednesday. "I think everybody knows what (U.S. Sen.) John McCain said is right: We've pretty well lost the war on drugs doing it the way we're doing it. Drugs are more available and cheaper than ever before. What we're doing is not working."
I'm stepping out on a limb here, but I think it is a good idea. No petty insults can shake the reality of our present situation: more and more, sexual predators are being given probation while non-violent drug offenders, mostly marijuana users, are getting the book thrown at them. Our prison system is so clogged up with potheads, it makes me sick to my soul sometimes.

For a better intro to this issue, read this article I wrote about the problem. Then check out Building-BLOCK, one of the most compelling child safety activist groups I have ever come across.

I think Kinky is speaking the simple, honest, down-to-earth truth on this issue. Marijuana is less harmful than alcohol, and you cannot overdose on it. We've stigmatized citizens arrested for possession of the substance to the point where re-entry into society is damn near impossible, dooming them to poverty and potentially future criminal endeavors. Our taxes are through the roof because of how many of these non-violent offenders we are forced to support in our prisons, and the child molesters are getting off easy.

. And that's only counting molesters who's victims were under the age of 12.

Yet when a college kid blows out a tire on Interstate 35 and a cop stops to help him, he panics, realizing he has marijuana in his pocket, and chokes to death after trying to swallow it. All for fear of arrest and the inevitable loss of education funding. Sen. Hutchison claims that education funding is pulled because the state doesn't want to pay for the user's addiction. Okay. Fair enough. But convicted child rapists are not excluded from that. So according to the state of Texas, it isn't okay for the taxpayers to pay for drugs like marijuana, but it is perfectly fine to pay for a pedophile's duct tape and video cassettes?

Where's the justice in that?

Society will not crumble to dust if we legalize pot. But we as a state and nation suffer tremendously by letting fixated predators run free, even after conviction. Let's make some room in our overcrowded jails for the pedophiles. What is worse - some guy smoking a joint and discovering a powerful lust for Cheetos, or your child being brutally raped by a sick, degenerate freak? According to the criminal justice system, the guy smoking a joint is a bigger threat than the pedophile.

Our priorities are out of whack, and it took a lot of guts for Kinky to say exactly what must be done to fix the problem.

Bravo, Kinky Friedman. Bravo.

**Update ...
I completely forgot about Washington Post Writer's Group columnist Neal Peirce's excellent article on how our justice system focuses on drug abusers and not child molesters. Here's a profound argument that may change your mind on the issue ...

Justice Focuses on Drug Abuse, Ignores Child Predators

Neo-Nazis strike political victory in Germany?

This is not good.

Bush: Capture of Bin Laden 'not a top priority'

You know, whenever Bush saying something like this, I think the best solution to the resulting quandary is to blame the Democrats! They're weak, you see. After all, we got the guy who perpetrated 9/11, right? Er, wait ...

From Faux News, yesterday (circa ThinkProgress) ...

HOST: Alright Fred, you and a few other journalists were in the Oval Office with the President, right? And he says catching Osama bin Laden is not job number one?

BARNES [Editor, Weekly Standard]: Well, he said, look, you can send 100,000 special forces, that's the figure he used, to the mountains of Pakistan and Afghanistan and hunt him down, but he just said that'’s not a top priority use of American resources. His vision of a war on terror is one that involves intelligence to find out from people, to get tips, to follow them up and break up plots to kill Americans before they occur. That's what happened recently in that case of the planes that were to be blown up by terrorists, we think coming from England, and that'’s the top priority. He says, you know, getting Osama bin Laden is a low priority compared to that.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Lil' Decider

Here's a great little animated series a friend put me onto this morning. Its called Lil' Bush, and it follows the adventures of the Lil' Decider and his pals, Lil' Cheney, Lil' Rummy, and Lil' Condeleeza. I promise, if you watch it, you will laugh.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Things that creep me out

Here's something fishy, and most of you will rightly dismiss it as nonsense, but it made a big blip on my radar earlier today and I felt I had to share it ...

One of Hitler's favorite propaganda events was the "Cathedral of Light," which was evoked during the Nuremberg Rally in 1936. During the rally, Hitler said ...
We had no prayer but this during our long years of struggle: Lord, give our people peace at home and abroad! Our generation has experienced so much that it is understandable why we long for peace. We want to work, to build our Reich, to build it according to our ideas and not those of the Bolshevist Jews.
We want to work for the future of the children of our people, for a future that will not only be safe for them, but easier as well. We have so much behind us that we have only one request for a gracious and good Providence: "Spare our children that which we have gone through!"
Be upright and determined, fear no one and do your duty! If you do so, the Lord God will never leave our people. Heil Germany!

The whole scene looked like this ...

Here's what the Pentagon looked like just after nightfall on Sept. 11, 2006 ...

Strange, isn't it? I wonder what was going on in the center of that building.

I also wonder why the FBI has deemed video captured by 84 seperate cameras of whatever hit the Pentagon a "state secret," and thereby not releasing the footage to the public. I think it would do a great deal of good for them to put out crystal-clear video irrefutably showing a 757 slamming into the side of that building. It would at least quiet the quickly-growing 9/11 Truth Movement, which was all over C-SPAN, CNN and MSNBC this last weekend.

Instead they're pulling off a Hitler-esque show of lights on the 5th anniversary of the attack.

That creeps me out. I'm just saying ...

USAF Chief - Test new weapons on 'U.S. mobs'

Isn't this lovely? Hooray for the police state!
Air Force chief: Test weapons on testy U.S. mobs

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Nonlethal weapons such as high-power microwave devices should be used on American citizens in crowd-control situations before being used on the battlefield, the Air Force secretary said Tuesday.

The object is basically public relations. Domestic use would make it easier to avoid questions from others about possible safety considerations, said Secretary Michael Wynne.

"If we're not willing to use it here against our fellow citizens, then we should not be willing to use it in a wartime situation," said Wynne. "(Because) if I hit somebody with a nonlethal weapon and they claim that it injured them in a way that was not intended, I think that I would be vilified in the world press."

The Air Force has paid for research into nonlethal weapons, but he said the service is unlikely to spend more money on development until injury problems are reviewed by medical experts and resolved.

Nonlethal weapons generally can weaken people if they are hit with the beam. Some of the weapons can emit short, intense energy pulses that also can be effective in disabling some electronic devices.

The rest ...

Monday, September 11, 2006

Happy anniversary

To commemorate the fifth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, here is a photograph taken by Jason Reed of Reuters News Service, showing President Bush doing what he does best, this time at a memorial in New York ...

Lovely, isn't it?

Monday, September 04, 2006


I'm on vacation!

At long last, three years of thankless work have lead up to this: one long week of paid vacation. While I'm out, this blog will not be seeing any updates. The Muckraker will return on Sept. 11. I'm in Austin until then. So stay safe, play nice, and I'll be back before you know it.

Peace in the Middle East.

Friday, September 01, 2006

The time has come.

The Weird, Turned Pro.

Created by The Gonzo Muckraker
Based in Dallas, Texas
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