Saturday, April 29, 2006

That Menace Iran

With even mainstream media outlets like the Washington Post and The New Yorker publishing credible stories that the United States is seriously planning a military attack on Iran, increasing numbers of Americans are expressing concerns about the consequences of the United States launching another war that would once again place the United States in direct contravention of international law.

The latest National Security Strategy document published earlier this year labeled Iran as the most serious challenge to the United States posed by any country. This should be an indication of just how safe the United States is in the post-Cold War world, where the “most serious challenge” is no longer a rival superpower with thousands of nuclear weapons and sophisticated delivery systems capable of destroying the United States, but a Third World country on the far side of the planet which, according to the latest National Intelligence Estimate out of Washington, is at least 10 years away from actually producing a usable nuclear weapon. Furthermore, Iran has no capacity to develop any delivery system in the foreseeable future capable of landing a weapon within 10,000 miles of our shores.

However, despite the fact that there is no evidence that Iran is even developing nuclear weapons in the first place, the Bush administration and Congressional leaders of both parties argue that simply having the technology which would make it theoretically possible for Iran to manufacture a nuclear weapon at some point in the future is sufficient casus belli. As part of his desperate search for enemies, President Bush claimed in January that a nuclear-armed Iran would be “a grave threat to the security of the world,” words that echoed language he used in reference to Iraq prior to the 2003 invasion of that oil-rich country. Meanwhile, Vice President Dick Cheney vowed “meaningful consequences” if Iran did not give up its nuclear program and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton claimed there would be “tangible and painful consequences” if Iran did not cooperate.

The Washington Post quoted White House sources as reporting that “Bush views Tehran as a serious menace that must be dealt with before his presidency ends,” apparently out of concern that neither a Democratic nor Republican successor might be as willing to consider a military option.


full article

Zuckerman Impeaches Bush

On Tuesday afternoon, Rep. Dave Zuckerman (Prog.-VT) dropped the third of three nearly unreported bombshells on the Bush administration. Zuckerman, along with 12 fellow lawmakers, introduced a formal resolution for the Vermont state legislature to call on the U.S. House of Representatives to impeach President George W. Bush.

With this resolution, Vermont joined the California and Illinois state legislatures, already embroiled in impeachment debates of their own.

US Market Capitalism

This is what underlay the transformation of American corporate culture, and of the American business corporation from an institution with national identity, constrained to reconcile interests of owners, employees and community, into the modern global corporation, effectively controlled by its managers and mandated to the single objective of producing "value" for stockholders, while handsomely rewarded its executives.

This change transformed labor into an anonymous commodity and put both blue-collar and white-collar staff into competition with an effectively unlimited global labor supply, resulting in employment insecurity, reduced or static wages, diminished or eliminated benefits and pensions, and the destructive social pressures of falling living standards.

In the United States, the new model of corporate business has evolved toward a form of crony capitalism, in which business and government interests are often corruptly intermingled, the system resistant to reform because of the financial dependence of both major political parties on contributed money.


Read the full article

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Hastert Loves Hydrogen

House Speaker Dennis Hastert of Ill., center, gets out of a Hydrogen Alternative Fueled automobile, left, as he prepares to board his SUV, which uses gasoline, after holding a new conference at a local gas station in Washington, Thursday, April 27, 2006 to discuss the recent rise in gas prices. Hastert and other members of Congress drove off in the Hydrogen-Fueled cars only to switch to their official cars to drive back the few block back to the U.S. Capitol. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Monday, April 24, 2006

Impeachment Happenings

California Assemblyman Paul Koretz of Los Angeles (where the LA Times has now called for Cheney's resignation) has submitted amendments to Assembly Joint Resolution No. 39, calling for the impeachment of President George W. Bush and Vice President Richard Cheney. The amendments reference Section 603 of Jefferson's Manual of the Rules of the United States House of Representatives, which allows federal impeachment proceedings to be initiated by joint resolution of a state legislature.

The resolution, in the words of Koretz's press release, "bases the call for impeachment upon the Bush Administration intentionally misleading the Congress and the American people regarding the threat from Iraq in order to justify an unnecessary war that has cost billions of dollars and thousands of lives and casualties; exceeding constitutional authority to wage war by invading Iraq; exceeding constitutional authority by Federalizing the National Guard; conspiring to torture prisoners in violation of the 'Federal Torture Act' and indicating intent to continue such actions; spying on American citizens in violation of the 1978 Foreign Agency Surveillance Act; leaking and covering up the leak of the identity of Valerie Plame Wilson, and holding American citizens without charge or trial."

Koretz submitted amendments gutting AJR No. 39, a resolution unrelated to impeachment, to the Assembly Rules Committee. The Rules Committee may take up the bill this week for referral, allowing him to formally introduce the amended resolution.

AJR 39 is a bill introduced in January by Koretz calling for a moratorium on depleted uranium

"At both the state and national levels," Koretz said, "we will be paying for the Bush Administration's illegal actions and terrible lack of judgment and competence for decades--not only in the billions of dollars wasted on the war and welfare for the rich, but in the worldwide loss of respect for America and Americans. Bush and Cheney must be impeached and removed from office before they undertake even deadlier misdeeds, such as the use of nuclear weapons. There are no bounds to their willingness to ignore the Constitution and world opinion--we can't afford to wait for the next disaster and hope that we can survive it."

For more inormation and to thank this American hero, contact Paul Michael Neuman in Koretz's District Office: (310) 285-5490 paul.neuman@asm.ca.gov

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

The Dictator Decider

"I'm the decider and I decide what's best." --George W. Bush, April 2006

Unfortunately for America and the world at large, he doesn't *know* what is best.

Long live the king.

Draft Gore

You cannot see this film and not think of George W. Bush, the man who beat Gore in 2000. The contrast is stark. Gore -- more at ease in the lecture hall than he ever was on the stump -- summons science to tell a harrowing story and offers science as the antidote. No feat of imagination could have Bush do something similar -- even the sentences are beyond him.

But it is the thought that matters -- the application of intellect to an intellectual problem. Bush has been studiously anti-science, a man of applied ignorance who has undernourished his mind with the empty calories of comfy dogma. For instance, his insistence on abstinence as the preferred method of birth control would be laughable were it not so reckless. It is similar to Bush's initial approach to global warming and his rejection of the Kyoto Protocol -- ideology trumping science. It may be that Gore will do more good for his country and the world with this movie than Bush ever did by beating him in 2000.

Gore insists his presidential aspirations are behind him. "I think there are other ways to serve," he told me. No doubt. But on paper, he is the near-perfect Democratic candidate for 2008. Among other things, he won the popular vote in 2000. He opposed going to war in Iraq, but he supported the Persian Gulf War -- right both times. He is smart, experienced and, despite the false caricatures, a man versed in the new technologies -- especially the Internet. He is much more a person of the 21st century than most of the other potential candidates. Trouble is, a campaign is not a film. Gore could be a great president. First, though, he has to be a good candidate.

In the meantime, he is a man on a mission. Wherever he goes -- and he travels incessantly -- he finds time and an audience to deliver his (free) lecture on global warming. It and the film leave no doubt of the peril we face, nor do they leave any doubt that Gore, at last, is a man at home in his role. He is master teacher, pedagogue, know-it-all, smarter than most of us, better informed and, having tried and failed to gain the presidency, he has raised his sights to save the world. We simply cannot afford for Al Gore to lose again.


Read the full article

Draft Gore 2008

He's dead right when he says there are better ways to serve. However, we still need a regieme change at the White House.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Save the Internet

A House subcommittee handed phone companies a victory Wednesday by voting 27-4 to advance a bill that would make it easier for them to deliver television service over the Internet and clearing the way for all Internet carriers to charge more for speedier delivery.

The lopsided vote was a defeat for Internet and technology firms like Google and Microsoft, which had hoped to amend the bill to enforce a principle called network neutrality and preserve the status quo under which all Internet traffic is treated equally.

Earlier in the day, the subcommittee voted 23-8 to reject an amendment by Rep. Ed Markey, D-Mass., that would have inserted specific language designed to enforce network neutrality and prevent the feared creation of fast and slow lanes on the Internet.

Markey said his amendment was necessary to protect the "Internet as an engine of innovation" and ensure that new services had an equal chance to sprout.
...
Supporters painted defeat of Markey's net neutrality amendment in bleak terms.

"Members from both sides of the aisle endorsed a plan which will permit cable and phone companies to construct 'pay as you surf, pay as you post' toll booths for the Internet," said Jeff Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy in Washington.

But Sonia Arrison, director of technology studies for the Pacific Research Institute in San Francisco, dismissed concerns that the proposed bill would lead to a two-tiered Internet.

"There's plenty of competition," Arrison said. "The market will take care of it."


Must we now [Save the Internet http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2006/4/11/194439/884] ?

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Energy and DNA

DNA can be damaged as a result of expending a large amount of energy, scientists say, and the fact that many participants in this study actually lowered their energy expenditure over the six-month period leads scientists to correlate this with decreased DNA damage and increased longevity.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Larry Daryl & Daryl

Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr., who voted against hearing the appeal, neither signed Justice Kennedy's opinion nor offered an explanation of their own. It is possible that they objected to the language in the Kennedy opinion about the court's readiness to intervene "promptly to ensure that the office and purposes of the writ of habeas corpus are not compromised" if the administration were to change Mr. Padilla's status once again.
link

Too bad there's no cameras in the courtroom... then Tonin' would have something to say!



(cheers to conspiracy planet for not giving me permission to link that image)