Replies: 104 Comments
Comment #1: Frosted Flake said on 12/15/05 @ 11:24pm ET...
An anouncement of interest....? (!)
I appreciate this forum
Comment #2: Jo said on 12/15/05 @ 11:50pm ET...
Will we find something about a downing street report in our stocking.....? :0)
Comment #3: DTW 06 said on 12/15/05 @ 11:53pm ET...
To POA and like minded critics of the outgunned Democrats I submit the following:
"Thank you for contacting me regarding your opposition to drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). I share your concerns about this issue.
Although I understand the need to decrease our nation's dependency on foreign oil, I do not believe that we must destroy this beautiful wildlife refuge to achieve that objective.
The Senate Budget Resolution included a provision - based on the President's budget proposal - to make it easier to open the Arctic Refuge to oil and gas drilling. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-Washington) offered an amendment to remove the Arctic Refuge drilling provision from the Resolution. I supported this amendment, but unfortunately it failed by a vote of 48 - 51. Senator Ron Wyden (D- Oregon) also offered an amendment that prohibits any oil found in ANWR from being exported. I supported this amendment which passed by a vote of 86-16.
Due to my concerns with drilling and other provisions, I voted against the Senate Budget Resolution. Unfortunately, this resolution passed with ANWR drilling included. As a result of special rules concerning budget resolutions, the Senate was unable to have a full and fair debate on this issue. The Senate was also prevented from using a filibuster to stop this legislation. I am disappointed that we may have lost an irreplaceable national treasure.
Again, thank you for contacting me. Please do not hesitate to do so again if I can be of further assistance to you or your family.
United States Senator"
Once again I suggest that you channel your energies and passions into supporting a candidate/candidates who will help defend the American way of life.
QuestionItNow - Blogs
Comment #4: Doug Kenline said on 12/15/05 @ 11:58pm ET...
Dear Representative Conyers,
Thanks for blogging.
Senator Harry Reid for Nevada now has blog.
Perhaps you could make a link to his blog every time you mention his name in any of your posts to help the people become more aware that other legislators are now beginning to follow your lead and start blogging themselves.
Senator Harry Reid's blog is here...
Thanks again for blogging.
Comment #5: Pissed Off American said on 12/16/05 @ 12:47am ET...
This whole immigration thing is a CROCK OF SHIT from BOTH sides of the fence. BORDER SECURITY HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH IMMIGRATION.
Border security is about PROTECTING AMERICANS FROM TERRORIST ATTACK.
You lying equivicating self serving son of a bitches in Washington need to stop milking this issue with this partisan BULLSHIT that seems to be SOP in Washington.
I am SICK TO DEATH of hearing "the republicans" this and "the democrats" that. WHEN are these bastards going to start doing their God damned jobs, which is protecting the best interests of the people they are sworn to serve, the American C-I-T-I-Z-E-N-S??????
Immigration is a issue of LAW. Let the immigrants use the process, AND COME IN THE FRONT DOOR, LEGALLY AND WITH THE PROPER VETTING.
But if you people INSIST on this partisan bickering back and forth on immigration issues so you can line your corporate crony's pockets with the ill gained profit of utilizing SLAVE LABOR and exploiting cheap labor at the expense of American jobs and security, than when someone walks over our southern border with a suitcase nuke or a vial of Ebola THE BLOOD OF EVERY DEAD AMERICAN IS GOING TO BE YOUR FAULT, YOUR DOING, and IN YOUR HANDS.
This is just ANOTHER bullshit partisan fiasco you people are going to throw in our faces under the guise of responsible leadership, when really it is about whose special interest group is going to get the bigger slice of the cheap labor pie.
If in fact there is a terrorist threat, THEN SECURE THE GOD DAMNED BORDERS, and stop playing these chickenshit partisan money grubbing games by gambling American lives.
Comment #6: Nolip said on 12/16/05 @ 12:53am ET...
As Congress hurriedly writes a bunch of end of the year fiction, I have a story that I would like to propose that might interest you.
In movies there is a classic "rule of thumb" namely, "follow the money".
Let's apply that to the situation in Iraq. What we have here is an ideology, democracy, that's been highjacked by a bunch of professional politicians and special interest groups. Unfortunately the ruse was played out on a gullible, vulnerable, unsuspecting American public who bought their line of BS, hook, line and sinker, especially after Bush permitted 9/11 to happen to scare the living crap out of the American public. By allowing terrorism to hit these shores, it served Bush's purposes perfectly. The American people gave him the blank check that he needed in order to initiate and accomplish his real mission while in office, namely, to get his hands on Middle East oil. Why? Because we're so damn dependent on it. That's why he's made no effort to come up with alternate fuels. That would be contrary to the plan and neither he nor his friends would make a dime off that deal.
The elections in Iraq today were just the icing on the cake for this joke played on the American people. Bush and his cronies sold Americans on the idea that its "the American way" to go in and remove Hussein. Removing Hussein was another part of the ruse...Hussein was just in the way to what Bush and his boys really wanted to get their hands on...the Middle East and its oil reserves.
So, you tell me, how much is multi trillion dollars of oil worth in American lives and American dollars? What Bush has spent so far is "chump change" compared to what he and his Rethuglican allies plan to bleed from Iraq and the rest of the Middle East once they Americanize it (thus preventing the Middle East from going Euro). By giving the Iraquis elections, Bush is throwing them and the American people "a bone", anything to pacify the masses who want to believe in truth, justice and the American way. Bush and his cronies aren't about any of that, even though Bush and his Congressional thugs use democratic talking points ad nauseum. This is a business deal, pure and simple and there are a lot of Rethuglicans who've made a killing, financially speaking, by playing along with this very sophisticated shell game. Let's see, under which of the three nuts did Bush hide democracy, Iraq, America or the rest of the world. This is political slight of hand, filled with smoke and mirrors and there's no telling when it will end because the Rethuglicans are all in on it...payola on steroids.
So write all the laws you want to write and get them passed as quickly as possible before the end of the year and then watch how the Rethuglicans will continue to mouth pius platitudes about democracy as they empty the treasury, and leave America and Americans high and dry while Bush and the boys are off to Barbados, or wherever, living the good life because they were able to convince a bunch of good hearted souls to die for a cause that none of the Bushies believe in. It's just a perfect ruse to pull over the American people. By the time America wakes up to it, Bush will be out of office, sucking down a cold one and wondering what all the whining is about. He gave America want they wanted, or at least what he told them they wanted, democracy throughout the world. He just forgot to show them the price tag. He can't help it if America is going to suffer sticker shock for the next five generations.
I expect my phone will be tapped after this.
Comment #7: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/16/05 @ 8:22am ET...
Mr. Conyers, I have been wondering how you feel about the fact that so many Americans believe that 9/11 was alowed to happen to instigate the PNAC's so called principles. I believe this to be the case. When you read their website, it all falls into place. What are your views on this please?
Comment #8: stoufi1 said on 12/16/05 @ 8:26am ET...
#5 Pissed Off American
You may not like it or believe it, but I'm with you 100% on the borders. Everything you say about it in your comment is absolutely true. It is time for the partisan bickering on the borders and corporate use of cheap labor to end, and end now.
Detroit is having a bit of a corruption problem, most recently with the latest mayoral election. Democrats run Detroit, as they have for years. Who is complaining? Other Democrats. Check it out here. Too funny.
Comment #9: DTW 06 said on 12/16/05 @ 9:12am ET...
"Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely."
"Power is the ultimate aphrodisiac." Richard M. Nixon
Detroit, Chicago, New Orleans, etc. etc. etc. Machine Politics and cronyism are nothing new.
The challenge we all (concerned Americans) face is how to break the stranglehold that special interests and big money have applied to our "democracy."
QuestionItNow - Blogs
Comment #10: LeslieB said on 12/16/05 @ 11:45am ET...
Perhaps an announcement of interest next week? Hmmm, it wouldn't have anything to do with the Downing Street memos and all the research Rep. Conyers' staff have been doing?
Comment #11: Pissed Off American said on 12/16/05 @ 11:52am ET...
You may not like it or believe it, but I'm with you 100% on the borders. Everything you say about it in your comment is absolutely true. It is time for the partisan bickering on the borders and corporate use of cheap labor to end, and end now.
Comment #8: stoufi1
OH BULLSHIT. You are merely harping Bush's latest stance, that has NOTHING TO DO with reality. The lying Monkey Boy had a COMPLETELY different stance in his first term. If the piece of crap intended to protect our borders he would have made efforts to do so long ago. Instead, he has done NOTHING, and the spineless Dems have ALLOWED him to do NOTHING, because in the end, BOTH factions have special intere$t$ in allowing the border to remain open. This latest bit of grandstanding is just going to be more of the same. Look, the fact you are agreeing with me disgusts me, because I see it for what it is. You scumbags, on BOTH sides, are going to attempt to ride the border security issue to improved polls, but you really don't intend to do ANYTHING to improve border security.
Look, Monkey Boy has NO CREDIBILITY. Hes a lying scheming felon, and his keepers are worse. Anything he says on this issue will be the same as all he has said on past issues, TOTAL BULLSHIT. And that includes the words of his internet harpies, such as yourself.
Comment #12: Pissed Off American said on 12/16/05 @ 12:06pm ET...
BTW, WHERE THE HELL IS PHASE TWO, AND WHY AREN'T YOU AND YOUR COHORTS ON THE FRONT PAGES OF AMERICA'S NEWSPAPERS DEMANDING THAT IT BE PRODUCED AS PROMISED???
Comment #13: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/16/05 @ 12:08pm ET...
POA, man I wish you had a blog where you could just lay it all out on the line as you do here. I would be a regular visitor. Thank you for your honest views! If you are interested in one they're free at www.blogger.com
Comment #14: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/16/05 @ 12:13pm ET...
And where the heck is Usama Bin Laden? Why don't they find him?
I submit that they have no desire to catch him at all. Indeed they don't want him found because he may incriminate the PNAC/Bush crime syndicate.
Comment #15: Pissed Off American said on 12/16/05 @ 12:24pm ET...
And where the heck is Usama Bin Laden? Why don't they find him?
I submit that they have no desire to catch him at all. Indeed they don't want him found because he may incriminate the PNAC/Bush crime syndicate.
Comment #14: Bill_o_Carolina
I believe Osama was dead prior to 9/11. The architects of 9/11 could not afford to allow that loose end.
Comment #16: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/16/05 @ 12:36pm ET...
Mr. Conyers I truly hope this announcement you speak of will be significant.
POA, possibly you are correct, but then a question is, what about the videos he's supposedly released? Answer=forged also perhaps. Yet any evidence is missing. We may never know then.
Comment #17: Neerav Trivedi said on 12/16/05 @ 12:41pm ET...
Mr. Conyers, Members of Conyers Blog:
I am happy to report that renewal of the USA Patriot Act in the United States Senate has failed!!! We are victorius!!! The vote was 52-47 against the Patriot Act.
Let's keep up the pressure to keep the Patriot Act from being approved, and have our constitutional rights and civil liberties from being trampled on!!!
Comment #18: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/16/05 @ 12:44pm ET...
Well there's at least some good news for now.
Comment #19: Pissed Off American said on 12/16/05 @ 1:16pm ET...
POA, possibly you are correct, but then a question is, what about the videos he's supposedly released? Answer=forged also perhaps. Yet any evidence is missing. We may never know then.
Comment #16: Bill_o_Carolina
If Spielberg can do a convincing brontosaurus, surely these fascist asses can do a convincing Osama.
Comment #20: Citizen J said on 12/16/05 @ 2:31pm ET...
Re #12- Word man. Where the HELL is phase 2, anyway??? Didn't they bitch about it being a "stunt" because they were going to release it the next week anyway? And LO AND BEHOLD, NOTHING. AND we here that they are stalling and stalling AGAIN. What a shock. Get on them, Mr. Conyers!!! Where's Reid?!? SHUT IT DOWN AGAIN UNTIL PHASE 2 IS RELEASED!
Now, a little levity:
Congressman John D. Dingell (MI-15) recited the following poem on the floor of the US House of Representatives concerning House Resolution 579, which expressed the sense of the House of Representatives that the symbols and traditions of Christmas should be protected. “Preserving Christmas” has been a frequent topic for conservative talk show hosts, including Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly.
Twas the week before Christmas and all through the House
No bills were passed ‘bout which Fox News could grouse;
Tax cuts for the wealthy were passed with great cheer,
So vacations in St. Barts soon would be near;
Katrina kids were nestled all snug in motel beds,
While visions of school and home danced in their heads;
In Iraq our soldiers needed supplies and a plan,
Plus nuclear weapons were being built in Iran;
Gas prices shot up, consumer confidence fell;
Americans feared we were on a fast track to…well…
Wait--- we need a distraction--- something divisive and wily;
A fabrication straight from the mouth of O’Reilly
We can pretend that Christmas is under attack
Hold a vote to save it--- then pat ourselves on the back;
Silent Night, First Noel, Away in the Manger
Wake up Congress, they’re in no danger!
This time of year we see Christmas every where we go,
From churches, to homes, to schools, and yes…even Costco;
What we have is an attempt to divide and destroy,
When this is the season to unite us with joy
At Christmas time we’re taught to unite,
We don’t need a made-up reason to fight
So on O’Reilly, on Hannity, on Coulter, and those right wing blogs;
You should just sit back, relax…have a few egg nogs!
‘Tis the holiday season: enjoy it a pinch
With all our real problems, do we honestly need another Grinch?
So to my friends and my colleagues I say with delight,
A merry Christmas to all,
and to Bill O’Reilly…Happy Holidays.
Personally, I would've changed it to "And to Bill O'Reilly...Go F**k yourself!" but that's just me.
Comment #21: Citizen J said on 12/16/05 @ 4:28pm ET...
ADMIN: Why is #8 up? You clearly stated that this person had been banned from this blog on a previous thread.
Comment #22: Genghis Khan said on 12/16/05 @ 4:41pm ET...
I didn't see anything about Stuffy being banned.
To respond to #8: I think it will be funny when the Republicans decry the corruption in their ranks (starting at the top, I hope).
I guess you missed this part of the story you linked:
"There is no evidence that such activities had a substantial impact on the current mayoral election. . ."
Comment #23: tahoebasha1 said on 12/16/05 @ 4:51pm ET...
The Patriot Act
While the current news of failure to re-authorize The Patriot Act is good news, indeed -- just read this, "There's also the possibility the Senate could still manage to bring the Patriot Act to a vote before the December 31 deadline." Patriot Act renewal fails in Senate. GOP fights to save provisions before end-of-year deadline.
So, we need to be on our toes -- it's not over yet!
Comment #24: bvac said on 12/16/05 @ 4:59pm ET...
I agree with several people here. The border debate has become a bit too partisan, with one side using it for leverage in anti-immigration policy and the other being pro-immigration-at-any-cost.
I see two solutions: Border security that focuses on intelligence and enforcement to prevent giving terrorists a backdoor into the country (and also crack down on drug/gun/human runners), and severe penalties and restrictions on businesses that exploit illegal labor.
Anything beyond those two points makes it seem like partisan ideology taking over. Is anyone addressing these points?
Comment #25: tahoebasha1 said on 12/16/05 @ 5:06pm ET...
Action Alert -- More Outrage
I can't believe it -- just when we thought we had essentially won on ANWAR -- just learned that there are Senators who are trying to "sneak" through Arctic drilling on the Defense Appropriations bill -- unbelievable! Call your Senators now and ask them to get this out of the Defense bill, ask them to filibuster, do whatever. (According to the NRDC, you can call them tonight and Saturday.)
There's just no end to these SOBs!
PLEASE TAKE ACTION!
Comment #26: Ron said on 12/16/05 @ 5:09pm ET...
The border problem is definitely a two edged sword.
If the control gets too good, all of the Americans running from the growing Fascist regime here ,wont be able to get out!
One good thing is though,if our politics don't get better here,no one with any sense is going to want to come to this country.
Comment #27: alizaryn said on 12/16/05 @ 5:18pm ET...
"if all goes well next week, I also expect to make an announcement that will interest many of you...."
I can't wait!
Comment #28: Genghis Khan said on 12/16/05 @ 5:27pm ET...
". . .and severe penalties and restrictions on businesses that exploit illegal labor."
This is something the Fuckuplican majority will never allow. The businesses that most exploit this illegal labor are some of the larger donors to local and federal Republican campaign coffers.
For instance, Halliburton is using undocumented workers to clean up New Orleans without paying them.
Comment #29: Pissed Off American said on 12/16/05 @ 5:48pm ET...
THE FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS ACT CRIMINALIZES SURVEILLANCE WITHOUT A WARRANT. WHEN CAN WE EXPECT YOU TO DEMAND THE IMPEACHMENT AND INDICTMENT OF PRESIDENT BUSH?
Comment #30: bvac said on 12/16/05 @ 5:57pm ET...
Plenty of democrats are guilty of this too. The DLC, globalist types have as much to gain from their corporate friends as republicans. Let's not forget there is plenty of conservative backlash against these policies, it's just overshadowed by the enormous influence of money over the current leadership.
Comment #31: Reed31463 said on 12/16/05 @ 6:16pm ET...
The issue of US border security is likened to airport security, again it is just smoke and mirrors. A device to further agendas. Whether it is an excuse for corporate interests or a reason to expand the powers of our police state, the end state is still the same.
A reason to instill fear and loathing in the masses, so that they insist on the passage of laws that further fascism and control.
We do not need new border security laws. Effective laws exist and are already in place. All they need to be effective is FUNDING and ENFORCEMENT, not neglect and lipservice.
If border security were such a concern, why have the number of personnel in the US Border Patrol and US Customs stationed in MI decreased?? (Probably everywhere else too, but I can only speak from experience.) Why are the longest lines at the Ambassador Bridge, the Blue Water Bridge, and the US-Windsor Tunnel the longest going into Canada?? To enter Canada from the US, plan for two hours to be safe. To enter the US from Canada, plan 10 minutes to be safe. To be fair, there is one way to avoid the long lines and wait, all you need to do is apply for and BUY a frequent flyer pass.
It's funny, Canadians don't fear terrorists. Canadians fear America. Not the average Joe and Jane Smith, but "radical' American ideals, such as preemptive terrorist interdiction.
Ethnicity is a non-issue. Gun ownership and murder are non-issues. Health-care is a very small issue. People do not lock doors. Beer is served on Sunday before noon. Worship with any religious community according to your faith.
However, the administration here on the other hand, has replaced our cold war enemy with a new one. They are called "radical Islam fundamentalists." They may also be referred to as insurgents, terrorists, haters of freedom and democracy, or Leftist Democrats.
When our leaders include these types of comments in their speeches and reporters, they serve only one purpose. They seek to fuel fear from our hate, our anger, and our prejudices.
(These lead to the dark side...Oops, wrong script! Just kidding!)
Seriously though, we need to look at the fear generated by our leaders and recognize it for what it is; mind control.
There is a quote from the Dune chronicles by Frank Hebert. It is a prayer used by the Bene Gesserit, whispered during fearful unsure times called the Litany of Fear.
"I must not fear.
Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little death
that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me
and through me.
And when it has gone past,
I will turn the inner eye
to see it's path.
Where the fear has gone
there will be nothing.
Only, I will remain."
Our leaders created a color-coded national fear generator. If it was truly meant to heighten security awareness and safety, such as our current Weather Alert system, it would have come with prepertory actions and meanings.
So, what happened? Where is it today? They used it so frequently, it became a joke. It ceased to instill the fear it was designed for, so they scraped it.
This is what this administration does to stay in power. Because what they truly fear is "We the people" and the will of the people. We break the chains when "We the people" learn the truth! They must always attempt to suppress voices and enforce controls against this possibility.
I know the truth of their actions. I laugh at them for the absurdity of their paranoia. I try to make them look foolish for distrusting Americans. We don't fear our fellow Americans and neighbors. We are all in the same foxhole. If you deport and render one natural born American, you render and deport all natural born Americans. If you try to remove one of my neighbor, you will have to remove my whole neighborhood. Why? Because we ARE united.
Comment #32: cali said on 12/16/05 @ 8:38pm ET...
For a nation that's song is the land of the free and the home of the brave, why is everyone so afraid and why are we losing our freedoms?
Comment #33: LeslieB said on 12/16/05 @ 8:43pm ET...
Dear Rep. Conyers,
Regarding the recent Bush-McCain anti-torture agreement: I believe the corporate media has missed the boat on this one?
The Washington Post reports that the Bush compromise on the McCain amendment now contains language that would allow civilian interrogators to "defend their use of interrogation tactics by arguing in court that a "person of ordinary sense and understanding would not know the practices were unlawful."
Who are the civilian interrogators? CIA. So the CIA will be able to argue what is reasonable and lawful behavior—they were following a lawful order?
The McCain bill also requires that Defense Department interrogators abide by the rules of the Army field manual on interrogations. But the Pentagon just approved a new, classified set of interrogation methods in its field manual, which reportedly pushes the boundaries between what is legal and illegal.
Also another amendment proposed by Senator Lindsey Graham, which Bush supports naturally, could allow the US government to detain people at Guantanamo indefinitely based upon evidence obtained through torture. It could also make McCain's torture ban unenforceable, give US military interrogators incentive to torture without fear of liability, and strip detainees of access to US courts.
It doesn't sound to me as if torture has been banned? Instead it sounds as if Bush scuttled McCain's anti-torture ban while appearing to do the opposite, and the media is helping Bush score a PR victory over the entire deception.
Regarding Bush's secret 2002 executive order giving the NSA permission to spy on Americans: I hope there will be an investigation? What other secret executive orders has Bush signed? Has Bush broken the law and violated the Constitution? How can one man declare himself above the law? What else hasn't Bush told Congress about?
Comment #34: LeslieB said on 12/16/05 @ 9:12pm ET...
P.S. Also, why do we need the Patriot Act, if Bush is going to do whatever he wants, such as spy on Americans?
Comment #35: LeslieB said on 12/17/05 @ 12:24am ET...
Dear Rep Conyers,
If you haven't seen it, there's a must read article on Online Journal tying the Sibel Edmonds case to the exposure of Valerie Wilson and Brewster Jennings.
Here's an excerpt: "Although many of these questions about the Fitzgerald investigation have yet to be answered, a pair of little noticed but explosive articles authored by Christopher Deliso of antiwar.com, "Plame, Pakistan a Nuclear Turkey and the Necons" and "Lesser Neocons of L'Affaire Plame", go a long way to solving the mystery of Valerie Plame's mission at the agency and may henceforth reveal what likely lies in those mysterious eight redacted pages of [Circuit Judge] Tatel's.
According to Deliso's two sources, the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet and former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds, the outing of Valerie Plame may have severely damaged a CIA operation to monitor a nuclear black market faciliated by the shadowy but well-connected Washington lobby group, the American Turkish Council (ATC). (Those familiar with the Sibel Edmonds case will know the ATC is the very same organization that the former FBI translator heard on wiretaps in connection with various alleged illegal activities, some connected to 9/11.) From Edmonds, Deliso obtained the following admission: "Plame's undercover job involved the organizations [the FBI had been investigating], the ATC (American-Turkish Council) and the ATA (American-Turkish Association) . . . the Brewster Jennings network was very active in Turkey and with the Turkish community in the U.S. during the late 1990s, 2000, and 2001 . . . in places like Chicago, Boston, and Paterson, N.J."
Online Journal reports that the American Turkish Council is connected to the neocons, such as Perle and Feith who may also be connected to the nuclear black market. Perle and Feith, in turn, are also close to Scooter Libby, who was recently indicted for exposing Plame and Brewster Jennings.
Is it possible that the Bush administration had other motives to destroy Plame's career and the Brewster Jennings operation beyond the Niger uranium story? Are members of the Bush administration selling American nuclear technology illegally for personal profit?
Comment #36: LeslieB said on 12/17/05 @ 12:27am ET...
Correction: Libby was indicted for lying and obstruction of justice in the Plame case, not for exposing her.
Comment #37: Rusty said on 12/17/05 @ 2:15am ET...
Why are we talking about the USA Unpatriotic Act and border security?
We should be talking about the historic day in Iraq, where a majority of the Iraqi people voted to become Iranians. That's one small step for an Iraqi/Iranian, one giant leap for Islam.
Break out the champagne, boys and girls, George W. Bush has just won the war on terror and struck fear into the hearts of evildoers everywhere, especially in Teheran.
Comment #38: tahoebasha1 said on 12/17/05 @ 9:15am ET...
Leave it to you to put everything in its proper perspective!! Thanks!
Now for some champagne!
Comment #39: tahoebasha1 said on 12/17/05 @ 9:32am ET...
#15 - POA
I do not believe Osama bin Laden is dead. Maybe, he's just taking it easy these days, relaxed with the idea that we REALLY have no intentions of pursuing him. And, then, too, maybe he knows something we don't?
OSAMA BIN FORGOTTEN
Bush: “To tell you the truth, I don’t know where he is. I just don’t think about him that much anymore. He’s just not on my mind. I just don’t think about him.”
Why do Bush & Co. have no interest in getting Osama bin Laden?
Why did a CIA agent visit Osama bin Laden while he was in a hospital in Dubai? What? To say, “Gee, Osama, we’re sorry you’re not feeling well and, by the way, you did a great job.”
[While Osama bin Laden has strayed from Bush & Co.’s minds – “madrassas” (religious training schools adopting Wahabi fundamentalist thinking with their clerics teaching hatred of the West) teaching children (ages 9 upwards) are springing up like wildfire (funded mainly by Saudi Arabia --- Bushies’ buds) in Asia, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines, etc. Most of the children who become “fodder” are poor and have no formal education available to them. Resultantly? A new future generation of JIHADISTS. (Note: There are also such schools in Saudi Arabia and many of these youth are part of the insurgency in Iraq [Randi Rhodes – Air America).]
Speaking of WTC:
I, at this point, neither believe nor quite disbelieve the possibility of complicity with the strikes against the WTC Towers. I certainly prefer not to believe any such thing. But the more you see of this administration, you start to believe that they are capable of just about anything. (I do think it's possible that 9/11 was simply allowed to happen, if anything.)
So, of interest: Morgan Reynolds, Ph.D, a former member of the Bush team who also served as director of the Criminal Justice Center at the National Center for Policy Analysis headquartered in Dallas, TX. Believes the towers fell due to the use of explosives.
Ex Bush official casts doubt on cause of Sept. 11 attacks.
June 14, 2005
By: Greg Szymanski
A former chief economist in the Labor Department during President Bush's first term now believes the official story about the collapse of the WTC is 'bogus,' saying it is more likely that a controlled demolition destroyed the Twin Towers and adjacent Building No. 7.
………. Reynolds, now a professor emeritus at Texas A&M University, also believes it's 'next to impossible' that 19 Arab terrorists alone outfoxed the mighty U.S. military, adding that scientific conclusions about the WTC collapse may hold the key to the entire mysterious plot behind 9/11.
Ex Bush official casts . . . .
I’m certainly no scientist or engineer, but Reynolds story is very compelling. It seems that a janitor has come forth attesting to the explosions as well.
Osama bin Laden said in one of his tapes when discussing the WTC towers with colleagues, that he and others had thought only the top parts of the buildings would be destroyed, and said, “It was more than we hoped for.” Seemingly, he was surprised himself that the entire buildings went down.
Comment #40: tahoebasha1 said on 12/17/05 @ 9:37am ET...
JC -- With eager anticipation, we await any, even a "crumb" of good news!
Comment #41: Pissed Off American said on 12/17/05 @ 12:24pm ET...
"I’m certainly no scientist or engineer, but Reynolds story is very compelling. It seems that a janitor has come forth attesting to the explosions as well."
Comment #39: tahoebasha1
This janitor did not simply "come forth". He has been available and vocal since 9/11. His name is William Rodriquez, and he pulled severely burnt people out of the basement of the WTC simultaneously to the impact of the jet 80 stories above. There is IRREFUTABLE and DOCUMENTED evidence that people were removed from THE BASEMENT of the WTC with injuries consistent with an explosion, far before the collapse of the building. Rodriquez even recieved a commendation for his life saving efforts......
WTC Basement Blast And Injured Burn Victim Blows 'Official 9/11 Story' Sky High
Eye Witness Testimony Is Conclusive That North Tower Collapsed From Controlled Demolition
Greg Szymanski June 24 2005
What happened to William Rodriguez the morning of 9/11 is a miracle. What happened to his story after-the-fact is a tragedy.
But with miracles and tragedies comes truth. And truth is exactly what Rodriguez brings to the whole mystery surrounding 9/11.
Declared a hero for saving numerous lives at Ground Zero, he was the janitor on duty the morning of 9/11 who heard and felt explosions rock the basement sub-levels of the north tower just seconds before the jetliner struck the top floors.
He not only claims he felt explosions coming from below the first sub-level while working in the basement, he says the walls were cracking around him and he pulled a man to safety by the name of Felipe David, who was severely burned from the basement explosions.
All these events occurred only seconds before and during the jetliner strike above. And through it all, he now asks a simple question everybody should be asking? How could a jetliner hit 90 floors above and burn a man’s arms and face to a crisp in the basement below within seconds of impact?
Rodriguez claims this was impossible and clearly demonstrates a controlled demolition brought down the WTC, saying "Let’s see them (the government) try to wiggle out of this one."
Well, they haven’t wiggled out of it because the government continues to act like Rodriguez doesn’t exist, basically ignoring his statements and the fact he rescued a man burnt and bleeding from the basement explosions.
His eye witness account, ignored by the media and the government, points the finger squarely on an official cover-up at the highest levels since the government contends the WTC fell only from burning jet fuel. And after listening to Rodriguez, it’s easy to see why the Bush administration wants him kept quiet.
Bush wants him quiet because Rodriguez’s account is ‘proof positive’ the WTC was brought down by a controlled demolition, not burning jet fuel. And Bush knows if he’s caught lying about this or caught in a cover-up, it’s just a matter of time before the whole house of cards comes tumbling down.
In fact, Rodriguez’s story is so damaging – so damning – it literally blows the lid off the government story, literally exposing the whole 9/11 investigation as a sham and a cover-up of the worst kind.
And it appears the cover-up also extends to the media.
NBC news knew about his story several years ago, even spending a full day at his house taping his comments. But when push came to shove, his story was never aired. Why?
His eyewitness account, backed up by at least 14 people at the scene with him, isn’t speculation or conjecture. It isn’t a story that takes a network out on a journalistic limb. It’s a story that can be backed up, a story that can be verified with hospital records and testimony from many others.
It’s a story about 14 people who felt and heard the same explosion and even saw Rodriguez, moments after the airplane hit, take David to safety, after he was burnt so bad from the basement explosion flesh was hanging from his face and both arms
So why didn’t NBC or any other major news outlets cover the story? They didn’t run it because it shot the government story to hell and back. They didn’t run it because "the powers at be" wouldn’t allow it.
Since 9/11, Rodriguez has stuck to his guns, never wavering from what he said from day one. Left homeless at times, warned to keep quiet and subtly harassed, he nevertheless has continued trying to tell get his message out in the face of a country not willing to listen.
Here is his story:
Comment #42: malleckson said on 12/17/05 @ 3:03pm ET...
What is the number of the Executive Order signed by bush in 2002 whereby he gave himself permission to spy on Americans. Does anyone know? I thought E.O.'s were public information.
Comment #43: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/17/05 @ 3:14pm ET...
Comment #44: Ron said on 12/17/05 @ 4:38pm ET...
What good is the truth,when nobody listens!
Comment #45: Pissed Off American said on 12/17/05 @ 5:03pm ET...
Monday, July 11, 2005
Second WTC Janitor Comes Forward With Eye-Witness Testimony Of 'Bomb-Like' Explosion in North Tower Basement
Jose Sanchez, while working in a sub-level 4 workshop of the north tower on 9/11, heard a bomb-like explosion, had his hair burned and rescued a co-worker who had his leg and knee broken from the basement blast taking place at the same time the jetliner struck the top floors.
Jose Sanchez, 45, of New Jersey in a never-released tape recorded statement made in early 2002 to William Rodriguez, the first WTC maintenance man to claim a bomb exploded in the north tower basement, said he heard what sounded like a "huge bomb," causing lights to flicker on and off, while he worked in a small sub-level 4 workshop.
"I knew Jose very well since we worked for the same company," said Rodriguez in a telephone conversation from his New Jersey apartment. "At the time, I taped his statements, I was more concerned about getting people needed assistance and, anyway, back then I really thought the government was seriously investigating the WTC attacks.
"But since then I have learned otherwise. I realize now they are covering-up the real truth and that's why I want to release Jose's statement. What really upsets me and, you can take this message to the White House, is that people like Jose and many others like him who experienced what happened in the basement of the north tower were simply ignored and never interviewed by the 9/11 Commission.
"If they really wanted to get at the truth, these are the very people who should have been interviewed, not public officials who knew very little about what occurred inside the buildings that tragic morning.
"However, instead we all have been ignored in order to cover up the truth. The victims, those who died and the families who lost loved ones deserve nothing less than the truth and I intend to keep talking until the truth is finally told."
The government also has not fully explained why it immediately tampered with a crime scene, a criminal offense, by having all the hard evidence from the WTC removed and shipped overseas before independent investigators had a chance to study the structural components of the towers in order to help determine the real cause of the tower's collapse.
"It sounded like a bomb and the lights went on and off," said Sanchez in the tape recording. "We started to walk to the exit and a huge ball of fire went through the freight elevator. The hot air from the ball of fire dropped Chino to the floor and my hair got burned," said Sanchez in the tape recording. "The room then got full of smoke and I remember saying out loud "I believe it was a bomb that blew up inside the building."
Comment #46: UL said on 12/17/05 @ 5:15pm ET...
George Walker Bush confessed to crimes on National Radio on December 17, 2005 -- Mirandize and book him.
Comment #47: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/17/05 @ 5:28pm ET...
Comment #48: Frosted Flake said on 12/17/05 @ 6:43pm ET...
Off Topic/ New Topic : Domestic spying.
1/ It is just delightful that this story should be published while the "patriot" Act is being fillibustered.
2/ It is far beyond egriegious that this story was sat on for a year, At whos' request? Did I hear that Correctly????? What???????!!!!! This is the differance between a paper of record and a propaganda mill (Talon, is the comparison I raise)
Now as for the legalities, let's enjoy a couple excerpts from the 1952 Youngstown sheet and tube case, a landmark on the topic of the limits of Presidential power. Taken from 'The anatomy of a Constitutional Law Case' A.F.Westin. Asst Prof of Govt, Cornell University, member of the D.C. Bar. Published 1958 (Capitalization altered by me)
Mr. Justice Jackson, concurring in the judgment and opinion of the Court...
...1/ When the President acts pursuant to an express or implied authorization of Congress, his authority is at it's maximum, for it includes all that he posseses in his own right plus all that Congress can delegate. In these curcumstances, and in these only, he may be said (for what it may be worth), to personify the federal sovereignity. If his act is held unConstitutional under these curcumstances, it usually means that the Federal Government as an undivided whole lacks power....
...2/ When the President acts in the absence of either a Congressional grant or denial of authority, he can onlt rely upon his own independant powers, but there is a zone of twilight in which he and Congress may have concurrent authority, or in which it's distribution is uncertian. Therefore, Congressional inertia, indifferance or quiescence may sometimes, at least as a practical matter, enable, if not invite, measures on independant Presidential responsibility. In this area, any actual test of power is likely to depend on the imperitives of events and comtemporary imponderables rather than on abstract theories of Law.
3/ When the President takes measures incompatible with the express or implied will of Congress, his power is at it's lowest ebb, for he can only rely upon his own Constitutional powers minus any Constituional powers of Congress over the matter. Courts can sustain excusive Presidential control in such a case only by disabling the Congress from acting upon the subject. Presidential claim to a power at once so conclusive and preclusive must be scrutinized with caution, for what is at stake is the equilibrium established by our Constitutional system...
...The Solicitor General seeks the power of seizure (the case was about Pres.Truman seizing the entire steel industry to avert a strike in time of war) in three clauses of the Executive artical, the first reading, "The Executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America"...(original punctuation, nothing omitted)I cannot accept the view that this clause is a grant in bulk of all concievable executive power but regard it as an allocation to the Presidential Office of generic power thereafter stated.
The clause on which the government next relies is that "The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States..."(original punctuation, again no omission)
...Assuming that we are in a war de facto, whether or not it is a war de jure, does that empower the Commander-in-Chief to seize industries he thinks necessary to supply our Army? The Constitution expressly places in Congress power "to raise and support Armies" and "to provide and maintain a Navy." (Emphasis supplied) This certianly lays upon Congress primary responsibility for supplying the armed forces. Congress alone controls the raising of revenues and thier appropriation and may determine in what manner and by what means they shall be spent for military and naval procurement...(original)
We should not use this occasion to curcumscribe, much less to contract, the lawful role of the President as Commander-in-Chief. I should indulge the widest latitude of interpretation to sustain his exclusive function to command the instruments of national force, at least when turned against the outside world for the security of our society. But, when it is turned inward, not because of rebellion, but because of of a lawful struggle between industry and labor, it should have no such indulgence...(original)
The third clause the Solicitor General finds seizure powers is that "he shall take care that the Laws be faithfully executed..."(original) That authority must be matched against words of the Fifth amendment that "No person shall be...deprived of life, liberty or property, without due process of law..."(original) One gives a governmental authority that reaches so far as there is law, the other gives ( I would prefer the Justice had said "acknowleges", but he said "gives") a private right that authority shall go no further. These signify about all there is of the principle that ours is a government of laws, not of men, and that we submit ourselves to rulers only if under rules.
The Solicitor general lastly grounds support of the seizure upon nebulous, inherant powers never expressly granted but said to have accrued to the office from the customs and claims of preceeding administrations. The plea is for a resulting power to deal with a crisis or an emergency according to the necessitite of the case, the unarticulated assumption being that necessity knows no law....
...The appeal, however, that we delare the existance of inherent powers ex necessitate to meet an emergency asks us to do what many think would be wise, although it is something the forefathers omitted. They knew what emergencies were, knew the pressures they engender for authoritative action, knew, too, how they afford a ready pretext for usurpation. We may also suspect that they suspected that emergency powers would tend to kindle emergencies...(original)
In the practical working of our Government we already have evolved a technique within the framework of the Constituion by which normal executive powers may be considerably expanded to meet an emergency. Congress may and has granted extraordinary authorities which lie dormant in normal times but which may be called into play by the Executive in war or upon proclamation of a national emergency. In 1939, upon Congressional request, the Attorney General listed ninety-nine such seperate statutory grants by Congress of emergency or wartime emergency powers. They were invoked from time to time as need appeared. Under this procedure we retain Government by law-special, temporary law, perhaps, but law nonetheless. the public may know the extent and limitations of the powers that can be asserted, and persons affected may be informed by the statute of thier rights and duties.
In view of the ease, expedition and safety with whichCongress can grant and has granted large emergency powers, certianly ample to embrace this crisis, I am quite unimpressed with the argument that we should affirm possession of them without statute. Such power either has no beginning or it has no end. If it exists, it need submit to no legal restraint. I am not alarmed that it would plunge us straightway into dictatorship, but it is at least a step in that wrong direction.
As to whether there is imperitive necessity for such powers, it is relevant to note the gap that exists between the Presidents' paper powers and his real powers. The Constitution does not disclose the measure of the actual controls wielded by the modern Presidential office. That insrument must be understood as an Eighteenth-Century sketch of a government hoped for, not as a blueprint of the Government that is. Vast accretions of federal power, eroded from that reserved by the States, have magnifyed the scope of Presidential activity. Subtle shifts take place in the centers of real power that do not show on the face of the Constitution.
Executive power has the advantage of concentration in a single head in whos choice the whole Nation has a part, making him the focus of public hopes and expectations. In drama, magnitude and finality, his decisions so far overshadow any others that almost alone he fills the public eye and ear. No other personality in public life can begin to compete with him i access to the public mind through modern methods of communications. By his prestige as head of state and his influance on public opinion he exerts a leverage upon those who are supposed to check and balance his power which often cancels thier effectiveness.
Moreover, rise of the party system has made a significant extra-Constitutional supplement to real executive power. No appraisal of his necessites is realistic which overlooks that he heads a political system as well as a legal system. Party loyalties and interests, sometimes more binding that law, extend his effective control into branches of government other than his own and he often may win, as a political leader, what he cannot command under the Constitution. Indeed, Woodrow Wilson, commenting on the President as leader both of his party and of the Nation, observed, "If he rightly interpret the national thought and boldly insist on it, he is irresistible...(original)His office is anything he has the sagacity and force to make it." I cannot be brought to believe that this country will suffer if the Court refuses further to aggrandize tha presidential office, already so potent and so relatively immune from judicial review, at the expense of Congress...(original)
That is what I call thinking about things, real hard. And while the subject is different (warrentless seizure rather than warrentless search) the priciples involved are identical. A procedure has been set out by Congress to accomplish the goal and the President prefers another procedure. Any who think this post too long may be satisfied by consideration of the magnitude of the matter. Any who think this post too long to quote may be satisfied with this, from Mr. Justice Frankfurter, concurring:
It is one thing to draw an intention of Congress from general language and to say that Congress would have explicitly written what is inferred, where Congress has not addressed itself to a specific situation. It is quite impossible, however, when Congress did specifically address itself to a problem, as Congress did to that of seizure, (or, today, search) to find secreted in the interstices (the spaces in between) of legislation the very grant of power which Congress consciously withheld. To find authority so explicitly withheld is not merely to disregard in a particular instance the clear will of Congress. It is to disrespect the whole legislative process and the Constitutional division of authority between the President and Congress.
There you have it folks, this matter has already been decided. By the Supreme Court. More than fifty years ago. Now look up the word, rebellion. Is that the right word to use for this?
I appreciate this forum.
Comment #49: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/17/05 @ 6:55pm ET...
War against Iran?
Comment #50: The Forest said on 12/17/05 @ 7:57pm ET...
Having just watched the C-Span re-run of the bipartisan press conference held this morning by some Members of the House, about the 2006 "transition" to leaving Iraq language in the Defense Authorization Conference Bill:
In case you haven't noticed, this administration IS "too smart by half"!! Whoever that reporter was who pointed out, with absolutely pitch-perfect political instincts, how the smart asses in the Executive will spin this hopeful '55' language, deserves kudos.
Mind you, I sympathize with your earnest hopes that the Executive has honor enough to adhere to the spirit of your efforts (and yes, their own public words), despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary. But, what "peril" are Executive Agencies threatened with, once they decide to spin your unspecific language to meet their own differing motives and agenda??? NONE!! The Republican Majority is going to hold the Executive accountable??!! All of a sudden, now? A LAUGHABLE dream, considering recent cold hard experience.
Yes, that reporter is correct: One word might have made all the difference: "must" instead of "should". Aren't some of you lawyers?? USING LANGUAGE, not JUST for the P.R. effect, but for HOLDING THE ADMINISTRATION ACCOUNTABLE, is critical. Just ask all the judges who get forced into trying to decipher the "true" meaning of such vague phrasing in legislation.
Having said that: I want to applaud especially the comments of Rep. Wayne Gilchrest of MD at this press conference. A shaft of truth shining through the ominous lies shrouding D.C.: the distinctions and vital differences that he capably defined and described about our so-called "enemy" who in fact come from many different camps. Al Qaeda's not allied with Sunni or Kurdish factions, long-term, who are not sympathetic to each other, and have different motivations when they act against the U.S., etc. The sort of thinking that Bush and his appointees seem incapable of grasping, and adamantly unwilling to learn. Rep. Gilchrest's Vietnam experience as a Marine, and the hard lessons he learned about competence and understanding on the ground, vs. the lack of same back in Washington, is obviously helping to inform his ability to make these vitally important distinctions about who the U.S. is actually "fighting" now. His comments about innovations to achieve energy independence were also spot on.
And, to the extent that this language in House Res. 55 in the Defense Authorization Bill IS in fact honored in the observance rather than in the breach, by the Pentagon and President, I commend the outstanding legislative work and perseverance of:
Rep. Neil Abercrombie, HI (D)
Rep. Walter Jones, NC (R)
Rep. Marty Meehan, MA (D)
Rep. Wayne Gilchrest, MD (R)
Rep. Dennis Kucinich, OH (D)
Rep. Ron Paul, TX (R)
and the other Members who participated, but weren't present at Saturday's press conference. I'm positive our troops in the field will be grateful for your steady efforts on their behalf, as Rep. Abercrombie put it well, "to stop the killing."
Comment #51: Jay Lechnyr said on 12/17/05 @ 9:27pm ET...
On the issue of illegal immigration. According to most reports, there are approximately 8 to 11 million illegal immigrants. Most are from south of our border. But there is also a sex slave trade between us and former east block nations - including former Soviet republics. But this is not the focus of my post. I intend to state the obvious for the record.
Illegal immigrants are often the ones who take low paying and menial jobs. But that is not all they do. They are also used to push down the wages of other jobs. For instance, once a standard average paying job, landscapers enjoyed lower middle class financial status. Today, there is an influx of illegal immigrants into the field who will work for less than half standard wage. This is placing downward pressure on American landscapers. Who benefits? The company owners take the majority of the benefits. The customers often take the rest. The American laborer takes the shaft.
Landscaping is not the only field where illegal immigrants are used in this fashion; and the business owners know it.
The GOP is the party of the business owner. But the voting members want illegal immigration stopped. They have a problem between allowing illegal immigration as payback for business owner financial support, and the calls of average republicans who want the borders closed. The GOP keeps trying to straddle the fence with rhetoric on one side and inaction on the other. But this is not just a dilemma of the republicans.
Democrats also have a similar problem. If the borders close and the illegals rounded up and deported, the absence of cheap labor will raise the prices of goods such as foodstuff. Although many low wage earners will see their income rise, the entire population will see a rising cost of living. This is also known as inflation.
So, close the borders and pay the price at the cash register. Or keep them open and have your wages reduced. Unless you happen to be a business owner.
I wonder what the neocon reaction would be if a few democrats called for allowing illegal immigrants to own and run their own businesses here in the states? Or just giving them citizenship as long as they are running their own business? Scream bloody murder, I would imagine.
Or democrats can try splitting the republican ticket by advocating either a more open border or more closed border policy. Just forcing them to give up straddling the fence would harm them immensely no matter which side they fall on.
Comment #52: tahoebasha1 said on 12/17/05 @ 11:25pm ET...
We are up against "devils" -- "wimps" and "wusses" "ain't" gonna' cut it! Remember, the "squeaky" wheel gets the "oil."
Comment #53: Frosted Flake said on 12/18/05 @ 12:17am ET...
Thank you LeslieB #35
An excellent contribution well worth the time it takes.
Ex-FBI translator's case may reveal Plame's crucial CIA role
Plame, Pakistan, a Nuclear Turkey, and the Neocons
Lesser Neocons of L'Affaire Plame
Comment #54: reddragon696 said on 12/18/05 @ 2:24am ET...
I would like to say how thankful I am about the refusal of the Senate to extend the U.S.A. P.A.T.R.I.O.T. Act in its present form thus hopefully causing all 16 portions of the Act to expire on December 31, 2005. I considered this Act to be the most dangerous Law ever to come before the Congress and was disheartened at the amount of Republican and a couple of Democrats that were so willing to sell out the American People by allowing this egregious Law to undermine our Basic Civil Rights. Luckily for us, President Bush has such a propensity for lying and breaking the law or we may never have had a chance at stopping this Act from being renewed. I strongly feel that we now need to keep the pressure on our members of Congress and demand that they protect and defend our Constitutional Rights in any future Law they pass. President Bush has made it quite clear just how little regard he has for the U.S. Constitution and the Rights of the American People by calling our most Cherished Document a "God Damned Piece Of Paper." I personally feel that since he took an oath to protect and defend the Constitution his words constitute Treason against us, "The People."
I would also like to thank John Conyers Jr. for all that he has done in helping to keep America a Free Democracy under our present Despotic Government.
Comment #55: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/18/05 @ 5:57am ET...
Comment #56: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/18/05 @ 6:21am ET...
Does anyone know for sure if this device actually exists?
Comment #57: Nolip said on 12/18/05 @ 7:48am ET...
Can somebody please tell me why the impeachment process has not already begun for Bush who is running amok believing that he, and he alone, is not only above the law but is the law of the land...where's the straight jacket?
“According to President Bush’s radio address today, as White House counsel, Alberto Gonzales personally approved Bush’s program for warrantless domestic wiretaps. By circumventing the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, those wiretaps violated federal law.
In a classified legal opinion, the administration argued the President had the power to order the warrantless search pursuant to his authority as commander-in-chief to wage war against al-Qaeda.
During his confirmation hearings for Attorney General in January 2005, Sen. Russ Feingold asked Gonzales about this precise issue:
SEN. FEINGOLD: I — Judge Gonzales, let me ask a broader question. I’m asking you whether in general the president has the constitutional authority, does he at least in theory have the authority to authorize violations of the criminal law under duly enacted statutes simply because he’s commander in chief? Does he — does he have that power?
After trying to dodge the question for a time, Gonzales issued this denial:
MR. GONZALES: Senator, this president is not — I — it is not the policy or the agenda of this president to authorize actions that would be in contravention of our criminal statutes.
In fact, that was precisely the policy of the President."
January 2005: Gonzales Said Bush Did Not “Authorize Actions…In Contravention of Our Criminal Statutes.”
Comment #58: tahoebasha1 said on 12/18/05 @ 10:23am ET...
#57 - Nolip
I had written letters to my Senators in a petition for impeachment in late October, or early November, 2005. Below is the response I received from Senator Durbin. It answers your question as to why impeachment proceedings have not commenced.
"Thank you for contacting me regarding proposals to impeach President Bush. I appreciate knowing your views on this matter.
Removal of the President, Vice President and federal civil officers by impeachment is one of the most serious constitutional responsibilities granted to the Congress. Impeachment procedures are used very infrequently and provide a legislative mechanism that has been reserved for carefully investigating and trying allegations of serious misconduct
on the part of the President, the Vice President and civil officers of the United States. The House of Representatives has the constitutional authority to determine whether to impeach and to draft articles of impeachment. Should the House vote to impeach and specify the grounds upon which impeachment is based, the matter is then presented to the Senate for trial.
To my knowledge, no one in the House of Representatives has sponsored any legislation to initiate impeachment proceedings against President Bush. However, I will keep your views in mind in case this matter is considered by Congress in the future.
Thank you again for contacting me. Please feel free to keep in touch.
Richard J. Durbin
United States Senator"
Comment #59: Citizen J said on 12/18/05 @ 3:10pm ET...
GK- Go to comment 61 in the "Parsing Torture Policy" thread.
Comment #60: Nolip said on 12/18/05 @ 3:32pm ET...
#58: Congressman Conyers..would your surprise announcement next week have anything to do with the Democrats introducing articles of impeachment against King George?
The only difference between the following headline and Bush's usual rhetoric is that 9-11 is covered in Iraq...same "Bush"i*...different day.
“WASHINGTON - President Bush is seizing on Iraq’s elections to claim significant progress as he faces an uproar in Congress over whether he exceeded his powers in conducting the war on terror."
Bush invokes Iraq as uproar over spying grows
Comment #61: Reed31463 said on 12/18/05 @ 3:53pm ET...
To further what Senator Durbin has expressed, Republicans are currently the majority party in the House. Because of this fact, they chair all of the committees in the House. This enables them to set the agenda.
Comment #62: Frosted Flake said on 12/18/05 @ 4:42pm ET...
#61 Reed31463 and Nolip
Tack this on to the end of post #61
...Which is why the Constitution provides in section 3 of amendment 14 the opportunaty for the minority party to take the case against the President to the People through the Court rather than take the case to the Presidents Party through the Congress.
Unusual, yesssssssss, but completly legal.
I appreciate this forum.
Comment #63: Nolip said on 12/18/05 @ 5:08pm ET...
FF...so what's it going to take for the minority party to get off their butts and slam dunk this piece of work known as George Bush into the brig for every infraction he's ever committed as president?(and this forum knows them all)...this latest misadventure into wiretapping is the one that takes the cake...Nixon had to resign because he covered up such an enterprise...Bush has the balls to ADMIT he did it and he doesn't give a damn what anybody in the country thinks about it because..well,you know, he's not only above the law...he is the frickin' law...now we know how Bush talks to God...it's a one way conversation with himself...
Comment #64: Frosted Flake said on 12/18/05 @ 6:35pm ET...
Nolip... It is going to take what Goerge has and the Dems don't. Balls. Goerge has them only because the Dems don't, and the Dems don't only because they have been told that they don't, and believed it. If the Dems thought they had balls, they would act like it, and Goerge wouldn't, because he would, as Nixon did, fear prison. As it is, he has no challenger, is therefore unchallenged, therefore feels no challenge.
This is not to say that I feel despondant, for the winds of change a-blowing continue to freshen. The storm that began with the revelation of the DSM has grown sufficient to rattle the windows in Washington, and rattle the denziens behind them. The struggle to keep those windows tight has led the administration to more and more Mussolini like jut-jawed posturing, and to more outrageous statements each morphing seamlessly from the last, simultaneously approaching the truth while moving away from the rule of law. Gradually, the war party is making itself redicules. With this comes the urge to ridicule. Sooner or later one of the Dems is going to succumb to that urge. And then, every thing will change.
The point I have been repeating, so often as well as so poorly, is that the Congress of 1867 was aware of the story of the emperor having no clothes. And put that in our law, section 3, amendment 14, of the Constitution. I have been saying that the minority party is not powerless, most particularly when the majority party is not lawful. The thrust of the message from the Congress of 1867 to the Congress of 2005 is that in order to wield the power of the law, you must obey the law. Fail to obey the law, and your opponants can use the law against you. Thus Nixons' resignation. Nixon faced a hostile Congress, Bush doesn't and with dyna-vote, doesn't expect to. This makes impeachment unworkable, but it does not prevent the law reaching Bush, if it is correctly applied. I have been trying to explain how to do that.
Trouble is, this portion of law has never been used. Poeple keep telling me, "That has never happened." "I have never seen or heard of that." "You're just making this up!" It is extreamly frusterating. All I can say to this is, listen to what the President is saying, is that the law? Now listen to what I am saying, "Section 3, Amendment 14, United States Constitution". Is that the law?
For some reason, which I cannot understand, this line of argument has been ineffective. Perhaps it is thought that the Constitution should file suit on its' own behalf. But in truth, the Consttution is no more than ink on paper. It speaks, eloquently, of many important things, but it can't speak for itself, it can't defend itself. That takes men. It could not be otherwise, has ever been so, will always be. It is men who craft destiny. And men can be stupid.
I appreciate this forum.
Comment #65: number6 said on 12/18/05 @ 7:57pm ET...
#64 FF, do you mean Section 3 of Amendment 14?
Comment #66: LeslieB said on 12/18/05 @ 8:00pm ET...
Comment #42: malleckson said on 12/17/05 @ 3:03pm ET...
What is the number of the Executive Order signed by bush in 2002 whereby he gave himself permission to spy on Americans. Does anyone know? I thought E.O.'s were public information.
EOs are public, except for the ones that are secret. See?
You know Clinton was impeached for lying about consensual sex. Bush can repeatedly violate the Constitution, lie to Congress and the American people, and set himself above the law and it's no biggie.
Comment #67: Rusty said on 12/18/05 @ 8:03pm ET...
Bob Cesca at Huffpo has an announcement:
"Crime tip! Crime tip! To federal agents and DC authorities seeking the President of the United States who has admitted to violating FISA law and the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution:
He's appearing on TV tonight. He shouldn't be difficult to track down. Note that whatever's in the background will indicate where he is.
Fly, you fools! Before he gets on his bike!
After all, we're supposed to report suspicious activity, right? Also, I figured since Cindy Sheehan was so promptly arrested for stepping onto the forbidden White House sidewalk; and how urgent everyone was to hunt down the Katrina looters, you'd want to handle this one with just as much haste and zeal.
Strength and honor, men!"
Comment #68: LeslieB said on 12/18/05 @ 8:09pm ET...
Comment #63: Nolip said on 12/18/05 @ 5:08pm ET...
he's not only above the law...he is the frickin' law...now we know how Bush talks to God...it's a one way conversation with himself...
It was recently reported that Cheney has been using the Oval Office intercom system to address Bush at crucial moments as the voice of God.
Comment #69: Frosted Flake said on 12/18/05 @ 8:49pm ET...
Yes Number 6. And I should have posted a link. And, what the hay, here is the text.
No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice-President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.
Comment #70: Reed31463 said on 12/18/05 @ 10:14pm ET...
For a complete analysis of White House/DoD/CIFA/JTTF/DIA/NSA/OSP/DoJ/local law enforcement/CIA spying on Americans; Constant, a former regular poster to this forum, has the skinny.
The article is pretty long, but is well worth taking the time to read the whole piece.
With George's admission of domestic spying, he reviews the facts of the administration's conduct under new light. The analysis touches upon the following subjects: the Patriot Act, domestic coercion and blackmail, Iraq, torture, 9-11, WMD, bribes, '02 & '04 elections, pre-war intelligence, the Phase II report, media reporting, military exercises on 9-11, McCain anti-torture legislation, insider trading, and PNAC.
New conclusions and judgements are drawn in light of the President's admission. But like any investigation, knowing the answer to one question, just raises more questions.
This article looks at these issues and asks many of the questions that Bush now needs to answer.
Hope you are reading this, George! Because you are going to need all the time you can get to do your homework!
Comment #71: LeslieB said on 12/18/05 @ 10:29pm ET...
Bush's speech tonight: Think Progress has posted the entire speech. But here's an shorthand version:
If you think the War on Terror [confusing GWOT with the war in Iraq] is wrong, it's because you're a defeatist democrat who supports terrorism and is endangering our troops. We're making progress in Iraq, so don't count the number of war dead. Because Iraqis went to the polls again. Freedom in Iraq, under foreign occupation, will mean freedom for the entire Middle East. But we may have to attack Iran and Syria later on, to ensure the spread of democracy. "Our" work isn't done, which freely translated means no one in my administration who supports this war will die in it. But many more Americans and Iraqis will die. GWOT will never be done, which means members of my administration and the GOP are sure to profit and stay in power [what Bill of Rights?] for years to come. Iraq = 9/11 = al Qaeda = GWOT x ad infinitum, but I didn't really say that. Saddam evil! Terrorism, terrorism, terrorism, terrorism. 9/11. Saddam decided to go to war, therefore we were right to start a war. Democrats are cowards who cut and run. 9/11.
Comment #72: Rusty said on 12/19/05 @ 12:11am ET...
Thanks to illegal NSA wiretaps, the Bush Administration already knows what Congressman Conyers may announce next week. The rest of us will have to wait.
In the meantime, I've been speculating what JC may be referring to. Could he be about to announce the publication of his new book, "What Went Right in Ohio?" the sequel to "What Went Wrong in Ohio?"
Probably not. The congressman is too busy to spend any time promoting a 1-page book.
But there are some other intriguing possibilities. To save everyone else a lot of research time, especially Frosted Flake, I've compiled a list of the Top Ten most likely announcements:
#10 JC will announce that he wants us to sign a petition to the White House demanding the release of Santa Claus, who is being tortured in a secret CIA camp in Ukbekistan because an NSA wiretap revealed that he's been traveling all over the world saying "Ho Ho Ho". Santa confessed after being waterboarded that this means "Death to Republicans" in Arabic, so unless we humbly petition for Santa's release and post bail for him, he will never have a chance of getting a fair trial.
#9 JC will announce that James Sensenbrenner is a #/!&^%$@*(%#^@ing fascist and that he is going to tattoo a swastika on Sensenbrenner's ^%$#*%ing forehead and then tell him where he can shove the Patriot Act.
#8 JC will announce that the 14th Congressional District of Michigan will secede from the Union at midnight on December 31, and wish the rest of us the best of luck in the coming New Year.
#7 JC will announce that Osama Bin Laden was captured by Ahmed Chalabi and Arthur Sulzberger on September 12, 2001 in Judith Miller's bedroom, but the NY Times hasn't published this story yet because it might possibly influence future elections, and unfairly imply that Ms. Miller sleeps with several of her sources and/or bosses at the same time.
#6 JC will announce he has learned that Donald Rumsfeld will resign and that Harriet Miers will take over as interim Secretary of Defense until a real one can be found. JC will tell us he doesn't think this is a good idea. We will agree with him. Harriet will be sworn in the next day anyway, and within an hour an invisible American Airlines 757 will unexpectedly crash into the Supreme Court, wiping out the liberal activist justices while the strict constructionist justices happen to be safely down the street at McDonald's having lunch. By his authority as commander-in-chief, Bush will appoint Harriet to all four vacant Supreme Court seats. The Court will vote 9-0 that America is now a hereditary monarchy, and every Democrat will be sent to a penal colony on Diego Garcia.
#5 JC will announce that Dennis the Menace Hastert will not reconvene the House of Representatives until Tom DeLay proves his innocence. Accordingly, JC will make Hastert an honorary member of the Congressional Black Caucus and thank him for helping save American democracy.
#4 JC will announce that his announcement will be delayed because DeLay's lawyers have been delaying acknowledging that DeLay is guilty as hell. Until this delay is resolved, JC has no choice but to delay his announcement about DeLay.
#3 JC will announce that in the spirit of the Holiday Season, he has issued pardons to Hank (Rove), NoDummie (Rove), Hcocdr (Rumsfeld), Van (Hannity), and Stoufi (Coulter). In the spirit of peace on earth, good will to men; they will be allowed to post again once victory is achieved in Iraq.
#2 JC will announce that he will be introducing a bill to rename our nation's capital. According to the latest census data, 25,000 Orwellian fascists and 30,000 corrupt lobbyists own that property now, so we need to comply with IRS, FTC, and FCC regulations and change the name of our capital from Washington D.C. to Orwellton D.F.C.L.
#1 JC will announce that he has 666 tapes from an undiscovered Nixon White House tape recorder that reactivated itself on January 20, 2001 when George W. Bush swaggered into the Oval Office and said "%$#*%$%^ the Constitution! There's a new Fuhrer in this town and I'm going to invade the whole world so Harriet will say I'm the best Fuhrer ever and God will let me drink whiskey again because I killed all the evildoers and liberals who hate Jesus!"
This is only the first ten seconds of the first tape, so JC will be busy announcing things for awhile . . .
Comment #73: The Forest said on 12/19/05 @ 5:42am ET...
Bearing Witness, as voting BEGINS at 3:45 A.M., Tuesday, December 19, 2005 in the United States House of Representatives, at the End of the Congress, in more ways than one:
1. Yes, Rep. Louise Slaughter, there were a few witnessing this spectacle of tyranny by the Majority Republican musclemen (to borrow Rep. Obey's appropriate coinage) through the wee hours of the morning. You know what the problem is, though? What the Hell does that matter, when Democrats don't lift anything but a rhetorical finger against such VIOLATION of the PLAIN AS DAY RULES AND GOOD FAITH of the formerly-DEMOCRATIC process of legislating in what used to be the People's House?! I mean, you wouldn't want to forego some Christmas shopping and partying, to, I don't know, maybe FORCE A READING OF THE INCHES-THICK BILL YOU RECEIVED AN HOUR BEFORE THE VOTE, THAT COSTS YOUR FELLOW CITIZENS BILLIONS OF DOLLARS OF NEW DEBT (even if it doesn't increase spending in the least)?! I heard a small rumor that the national debt ceiling will be yet again reached, within a week to a month's time. Would you be planning any sort of action around that egregious milestone, by any chance??
2. Not based on the utter, utter dearth of creative action ideas put forth by your Caucus of Democrats, and on the complete lack of imagination in the wording used in so many (not all) of your floor speeches. It all does beg the question of what you spend your time doing. Maybe it's the lack of Omega-3s in all that factory-farmed food you are consuming. Where's the THOUGHT process, in your feeble attempts to point out THE BLEEDING OBVIOUS right in front of you that EVERY American who is paying any attention is SCREAMING about??!! Leader Pelosi, IT IS NOT ENOUGH, to "claim" the moral high ground in this dispute. You must charge up that hill and HOLD IT. Rep. Jay Inslee - I salute you. YOU had the right idea, about pulling a little (just a little!) "hard duty" FOR ONCE, like the troops in Iraq are forced to do AT YOUR BEHEST, in order to demonstrate the IMPORTANCE of the words you all speak to a "frozen in indifference" Republican Majority (thanks Rep. Larson and FDR). If you all can't take this any more seriously than your token opposition, and comfort-level votes to follow, why in the world do you expect anyone to take YOU seriously. Basically, the country no longer does. And people who visibly scurry for cover, like Jim Marshall of GA (man what an inferiority complex), and Rahm Emanuel (what IS he trying to prove about himself) at the merest HINT of a need to stand their ground -- pretty much seal the deal. Clearly, no real leadership effort was extended leading up to this series of impossibly cynical manoeuvers, to make a coherent, principled Democratic stand at a definite line in the sand. And thus: NOTHING. Hands-down win for those who now rule the U.S. Congress with impunity, at the behest of their King, and with full, unabated, unhidden SPITE for all the VITAL components of democratic process in a former democratic republic. Tyrants need secrecy, and the Democratic Party passively facilitates that by their lack of meaningful action, despite their wordplay.
3. You need to coordinate, refine, enhance and utlilize our language, employ passion, execute with focused fury, advertise where the media blacks out your message, visualize, personalize, and make it as personal as it is to all of us out in the hinterlands who will suffer the consequences of these heartless, vicious, cynical, purposeful, mocking, and unChristian attacks by the Republican tyrants running roughshod through the Halls of Congress.
4. The Floor Speech Awards Go To:
Rep. Jim McDermott (WA): Very, very well said, with a piece of coal in your hand as a telling visual. That's right - the average American makes ONE-FIFTH of the salary pulled down by you well-groomed, well-clad, well-fed, and oh, so insulated D.C. elites. No "suffering" in sight for that elite, sure enough. Thanks for remembering the rest of us, Jim. You did tell it like it is, with full feeling.
Rep. Ed Markey (MA): Twice, with PASSION and heart, you made clear the choices at hand. Yes, the Republican tyrants of the Congress WORSHIP MONEY, and therefore, THOSE WHO POSSESS IT, with every fiber of their being, and you called them on it. This is crystal clear, to those who pay enough attention to C-Span. It is NOT in the least clear, in its specifics, to the rest of the overworked, underpaid American populace. It is past time to remedy that, with every resource at your disposal.
Rep. David Obey (WI): You said: "The legislative process has been corrupted by a couple of musclemen in the Congress who think they have the right to make everyone else do their bidding." Amen. That would be Frist and Hastert, among others. "Fundamental corruption of the legislative process," indeed. Is there more you can do about their bad faith hijacking and amending, with ZERO INPUT from the Conference Committee members, of the Conference Report? As I type, I hear you proposing a motion to recommit this bill to Conference. Thank you for that. [At 5:00 A.M. the Defense-AlaskaNWReserveDrilling Appropriations Bill passed the House nevertheless, with plenty of "Democratic" votes helping out.]
And Rep. John Dingell (MI): Just for taking the floor at 5:20 A.M., still speaking up for doing the RIGHT THING, after 50 years of service in Congress. [And for the splendid Dingell Holiday Jingle.] What kind of power-mad "Republican leadership" can conscience putting Members through such a marathon.
Representatives, a suggestion: Go to the Vietnam Veterans' Memorial stone, and tell the country: Democrats are REALISTS, not "defeatist." REAL people dying trumps boogeymen in unknown corners that King Bush is so terrified of that he must cancel American liberty to scare them away. Tyrants don't and can't promote democracy. Their very natures rebel against inclusion and respect of the views of anyone who threatens their power. They are afraid to confront anyone of their own size. They'll always find the weakling (Hi, Saddam). Democrats, stop hiding, and start fighting the money-worshippers, whether they are within or outside your party. Every expenditure on defense IS NOT WORTHY - admit that, and maybe you'll finally be able to admit that these Republicans never met a public penny they didn't covet. Nor did these Republicans ever deign to RAISE a cent of revenue to offset their spending, unless they could do it without consequence, on the backs of the least among us.
I only hope the Senate Democrats can, and will bail America out a little from the shipwreck that emerged from the House on this, your last day of "debate" until February's 6-day session. Nothing like a two-month absence of action, while our country slowly disappears from view on the horizon.
[I apologize for the length of this -- but I decided some record should be made of the dirty midnight (and beyond) dealings of the House cynically carried out while the country sleeps. I wish everyone as Merry a Christmas and Peaceful a Holiday Season as possible.]
Comment #74: Nolip said on 12/19/05 @ 7:00am ET...
Bush comes clean
George Bush does his best Steve Urkel: “Did I do that”? (Interpretation: “Yes I did but I was right, like I always am, and don’t misunderstand me because I am not admitting any mistake here, just telling how right I am, America, with different words but basically the same meaning.”)
And in a related matter…
Wiretaps could have averted 9/11: Cheney
NEWS FLASH FOR DICK CHENEY: YOU HAD THE INTEL, YOU DIDN’T BOTHER TO ACT ON IT, DUFUS!
“The following is a transcript of the August 6, 2001, presidential daily briefing entitled Bin Laden determined to strike in US. Parts of the original document were not made public by the White House for security reasons.
Clandestine, foreign government, and media reports indicate bin Laden since 1997 has wanted to conduct terrorist attacks in the US. Bin Laden implied in U.S. television interviews in 1997 and 1998 that his followers would follow the example of World Trade Center bomber Ramzi Yousef and "bring the fighting to America."
Comment #75: Nolip said on 12/19/05 @ 7:05am ET...
Tis the season...
Bush Lyrics (with apologies to The Grinch)
You're a Mean One, Mr. Bush
You're a mean one, Mr. Bush.
You really are a heel.
You're as cuddly as a cactus,
You're as charming as an eel.
You're a bad banana
With a greasy black peel.
You're a monster, Mr. Bush.
Your heart's an empty hole.
Your brain is full of spiders,
You've got garlic in your soul.
I wouldn't touch you, with a
thirty-nine-and-a-half foot pole.
You're a vile one, Mr. Bush.
You have termites in your smile.
You have all the tender sweetness
Of a seasick crocodile.
Given the choice between the two of you
I'd take the seasick crockodile.
You're a foul one, Mr. Bush.
You're a nasty, wasty skunk.
Your heart is full of unwashed socks
Your soul is full of gunk.
The three words that best describe you,
are, and I quote: "Stink. Stank. Stunk."
You're a rotter, Mr. Bush.
You're the king of sinful sots.
Your heart's a dead tomato splot
With moldy purple spots,
Your soul is an apalling dump heap overflowing
with the most disgraceful assortment of deplorable
Mangled up in tangled up knots.
You nauseate me, Mr. Bush.
With a nauseaus super-naus.
You're a crooked jerky jockey
And you drive a crooked horse.
You're a three decker saurkraut and toadstool
With arsenic sauce.
Comment #76: Nolip said on 12/19/05 @ 7:11am ET...
The media weighs in on Bush's intel encroachment (can't you hear them singing along with #75?):
"Kansas City Star: “The Struggle With Foreign Enemies Does Not Simply Give Him A Blank Check”…
Denver Post: Adm. Has Lost “Balance Between Essential Anti-Terrorism Tools And Encroachment On Liberties”…
LA Times: “Stunning,” “One Of The More Egregious Cases Of Governmental Overreach”…
Wash. Post: “The Tools Of Foreign Intelligence Are Not Consistent With A Democratic Society”…
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: “Unacceptable Actions Of A Police State”…
St. Petersburg Times: “So Dangerously Ill-Conceived And Contrary To This Nation's Guiding Principles”…
NY Times: Bush “Secretly And Recklessly Expanded The Govt.'s Powers In Dangerous And Unnecessary Ways”…"
Comment #77: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/19/05 @ 8:58am ET...
Mr. Conyers, Please can you tell us why phase 2 of the 911 investigation hasn't been forthcoming?
Comment #78: Nolip said on 12/19/05 @ 9:16am ET...
More "ends justifies the means" rhetoric which masks the true intent of this President...subvert, at every level, the rights of all Americans..
Gonzales: Congress Gave President The Authority To Spy On Americans
Mon Dec 19, 2005 at 07:06:49 AM PDT
In this morning's interview with Katie Couric on the Today show, Couric asked Attorney General Alberto Gonzales what authorized the President to conduct warrantless spying on Americans. Gonzales trotted out the "inherent authority" excuse, one that has been effectively shattered by Armando here and here. But then he also said that the President also was authorized by Congress to commit this act. Specifically, he said that Bush was granted this power under the authorization for war.
Comment #79: Pissed Off American said on 12/19/05 @ 1:36pm ET...
"If all goes well next week, I also expect to make an announcement that will interest many of you...."
To be honest, I find this sort of tittilating foreshadowing highly irritating. You would hope these self agrandizing games would be above those who are running our government. What is the point in blogging some chickenshit "teaser" like that? In fact, it is condescending and self serving. As every day goes by I am losing more and more respect for these people.
Look, Conyers, I could care less what your "announcement" is when you play grade school games leading up to it. Make the God damned announcement when you are ready, without all the bullshit leading up to it. While you're at it, care to tell us where the hell Phase Two is, and why you people aren't screaming from the rooftops demanding that Roberts produce it as promised??? And, uh, tell me, JUST WHAT THE HELL DO YOU AND YOUR COMPATRIOTS IN THE SO CALLED "OPPOSITION PARTY" INTEND TO DO ABOUT OUR PRESIDENT ILLEGALLY SPYING ON AMERICAN CITIZENS??
Comment #80: GreyHawk121 said on 12/19/05 @ 1:46pm ET...
A very disturbing article has appeared on dKos that I would like you to address (there, as well as here).
Here's the link:
DailyKos--Conyers Sells Out to Music/Movie Industry, to Stop Fair Use
Please elaborate before folks get all worked up.
Comment #81: GreyHawk121 said on 12/19/05 @ 1:52pm ET...
Here's another diary on the same thing as my earlier comment (#80):
Rep. Conyers, you've got some answering to do
Comment #82: Alma said on 12/19/05 @ 2:01pm ET...
GreyHawk, you beat me to the punch. I was trying to figure out if emailing JC or posting here would be the quickest way to get him to respond. There are some good comments in the thread and possibly hints on the surprize from JC.
Comment #83: malleckson said on 12/19/05 @ 2:24pm ET...
#66 Leslie....thanks for straightening me out. I had a memory loss, I forgot the cabal that committed the coup d'etat in the USA; ie: Mission Accomplished, still had a few rules they needed to adher too. I am so stupid. Not having lived under a dictatorship, best I learn the rules.
Comment #84: GreyHawk121 said on 12/19/05 @ 2:24pm ET...
Alma - my attempts to email JC always bounce.
...I wonder if there's a message in there somewhere...
Comment #85: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/19/05 @ 2:28pm ET...
HR4569, No way Mr. Conyers!?
This is a baad bill for the public!
What's the big idea? Is this the much anticipated announcement? Please give us your explanation.
Comment #86: Citizen J said on 12/19/05 @ 2:55pm ET...
Yeah, what is this about Mr. Conyers?? BAD IDEA, BAD LAW.
What's the DEAL?? Yet ANOTHER shameless Corporate giveaway, I thought better of you.
Comment #87: Alma said on 12/19/05 @ 3:19pm ET...
Sorry I don't know how to make links work, but I think this is our surprize.
Comment #88: Ron said on 12/19/05 @ 3:44pm ET...
Probably like Patriot 1 ,Didn't read it ,just signed it to get the assholes off his back!
This is naturally just an assumption.But if he did I would like to hear his reasoning behind this!
Comment #89: Citizen J said on 12/19/05 @ 3:49pm ET...
Yup Alma, you're correct- this is the "surprise", for sure.
Now, let's see some ACTION to go with the words.
Comment #90: The Forest said on 12/19/05 @ 4:11pm ET...
To shed a little light in response to the questions here concerning the status of the Phase II Intelligence Report, here's an excerpt from today's Christian Science Monitor:
"...Congress is also ramping up for investigations of overseas detention centers, another story first disclosed in press reports, as well as Phase 2 of an investigation on whether the Bush administration exaggerated the prewar intelligence on Iraq. Democrats, who last month called the Senate into an unusual secret session to draw attention to this issue, say the investigation is now 'moving along'..."
[And for the record, my Post #73 above should obviously have read "Monday" not "Tuesday" -- allnighters don't make for good legislation or good proof-reading.]
To Rep. Conyers and his SUPERB STAFF: Thank you for your 'extra credit' efforts in compiling the forthcoming comprehensive documentation of Bush's malfeasance in office. It's very much appreciated.
Comment #91: trescott said on 12/19/05 @ 4:48pm ET...
Response To #90,
Christian Science Monitor????
I don't think the christian coalition is going to help us hold the current government responsible for their actions.
I'm with POA. Lets see some action with those words Mr. Conyers.
Comment #92: Rusty said on 12/19/05 @ 4:52pm ET...
Congressman Conyers' announcement probably pertains to this:
"House Judiciary Committee Democrats, spearheaded by Congressman John Conyers (D-MI), are set to release possibly the sharpest congressional critique to date surrounding Iraq, RAW STORY has learned.
The report, titled "The Constitution in Crisis: The Downing Street Minutes and Deception, Manipulation, Torture, Retribution and Coverups in the Iraq War," is slotted to be made available to the public Tuesday."
Obviously, Bush is guilty of multiple impeachable offenses. I am grateful to Congressman Conyers and the Democrats for compiling and issuing this report. Now they must frame the national debate by demanding the resignations of Bush and Cheney.
With the GOP in control of Congress, America at war, and future terrorist attacks likely at some point, I don't think the impeachment option is realistic.
The only practical alternative is for Democrats and progressive groups to put intense and unrelenting public pressure on Bush and Cheney to resign.
These two criminals cannot be permitted to remain in office. They will continue to defy the Constitution and the laws of this country, so Democrats must clarify the choice Americans have to make: they can either submit to this Bush/Cheney dictatorship and GOP police state, or help Democrats defend the CONSTITUTION.
Comment #93: cali said on 12/19/05 @ 5:04pm ET...
U.S. Rep. John Lewis said Monday in a radio interview that President Bush should be impeached if he broke the law in authorizing spying on Americans.
The Democratic senator from Georgia told WAOK-AM he would sign a bill of impeachment if one was drawn up and that the House of Representatives should consider such a move.
Lewis is among several Democrats who have voiced discontent with Sunday night's television speech, where Bush asked Americans to continue to support the Iraq War. Lewis is the first major House figure to suggest impeaching Bush.
"Its a very serious charge, but he violated the law," said Lewis, a former civil rights leader. "The president should abide by the law. He deliberately, systematically violated the law. He is not King, he is president."
Comment #94: hpcharlie said on 12/19/05 @ 5:12pm ET...
This information should be "researched" and not taken lightly since this Administration is bent on taking us to War with Iran!
Picking up the Pieces: Practical Guide for Surviving Economic Crashes, Internal Unrest and Military Suppression By: Sorcha Faal “In the span of less than 3 months gasoline prices will rise 500%. The prices of both food and shelter rise over 300%. (Continued)
The Children of Winter: Apocalyptic Message of Hope By: Sorcha Faal "Not told by Sorcha herself alone, but by the Children of Winter themselves, who at 6 years of age the weather had no effect upon them as they walked naked in the snows of winter. Who at 10 years of age could walk thorough boiling water with no burns or (Continued)
December 13, 2005
United States Begins Mass Arrests of Israelis As A Nuclear Terror Attack Upon America Appears Imminent, and Israel Prepares For Iran War
By: Sorcha Faal, and as reported to her Russian Subscribers
Russian Intelligence Agencies are reporting today that the Untied States Military Authorities have beguna series of Mass Arrests of Israeli Citizens in their Country, and as we can read as confirmed by Israel’s Ynetnews Service in their article titled "21 Israelis arrested on illegal peddling charges, to be deported" and which says:
"The wave of arrests of young Israelis in the United States has been renewed, as 21 Israelis were detained by U.S. Immigration Police in Iowa and South Dakota on charges of illegal peddling, Israel's leading newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported Tuesday.
Some of those arrested held work permits issued by the U.S. embassy in Israel. American immigration officials say, however, that the permits have expired and that the sellers were not allowed to work in the places where they were arrested. Some of the Israelis were released on bail, while others will remain in custody. It is believed that all of them will be expelled from the United States."
News within the United States itself about these arrests are currently being suppressed, and even to the Israeli reports of these mass arrests they have been diluted of true facts, as both of these Nations fear that these ‘students’ are but the precursors to the expected Nuclear attack upon an American City, and which many United States Leaders are warning is ‘Imminent’.
These mass arrests of Israeli Students also mirror those events surrounding the Terrorist Attacks upon the United States on September 11, 2001, and as we can read as reported by the dissident American News Service Anti-War.Com, and as we can read in their report titled "9/11: WHAT DID ISRAEL KNOW?" and which says:
“Israel had foreknowledge of 9/11 – that was Carl Cameron's explosive contention, made last year in a blockbuster series of reports on Fox News exposing an Israeli spy ring in the U.S. New evidence confirms his story – and points to a rather ominous conclusion….
Reporting the round-up and deportation of scores of Israeli agents – masquerading as "art students" – Cameron noted last December that several were "active Israeli military" and the rest had skills that one normally associates with spies: electronic interception, explosives, and special operations. Several failed polygraph tests when asked if they were engaged in "surveillance activities against and in the United States." Aside from trying to penetrate U.S. government facilities, this network, which went into high gear in the months prior to 9/11, was also watching the Al Qaeda terrorists, according to Cameron:
"There is no indication that the Israelis were involved in the 9-11 attacks, but investigators suspect that the Israelis may have gathered intelligence about the attacks in advance, and not shared it. A highly placed investigator said there are – quote – 'tie-ins.' But when asked for details, he flatly refused to describe them, saying, – quote – 'evidence linking these Israelis to 9-11 is classified. I cannot tell you about evidence that has been gathered. It's classified information.'"
See rest at http://www.whatdoesitmean.com/index861.htm
Comment #95: Genghis Khan said on 12/19/05 @ 5:25pm ET...
Folks: Conyers' office is likely ducking your calls because they have been slashdotted.
An article about this bill was posted on Slashdot and contact information for Sensenbrenner and Conyers was very quickly posted (email plus telephone).
Their offices are likely deluged with angry opinions from some very technical-minded people.
As well they should be. Mr. Conyers, I expect your explanation very soon.
Comment #96: JC said on 12/19/05 @ 7:16pm ET...
I have been hearing today that a lively discussion is taking place around the internet about my cosponsorship of the “Digital Transition Content Security Act,” a bill that attempts to plug the “analog hole.” Because the tone of some of these discussions has become so vitriolic, I decided to respond here.
First, some who disagree with my cosponsorship of this bill have imputed motives to me in a manner that I think is unfair. My cosponsorship has been labeled a “sell out,” a “giveaway” or a “handout” to the movie/music industry, among other things. It has been said that I must have had “a lot of [my] time bought by the content industries” to cosponsor this bill.
The content industries would be very surprised to hear these assessments, which belie a great unfamiliarity with my legislative record and statements about these issues. Over a more than 40 year Congressional career, I have stood up clearly and consistently for the artists and others who work in the content industry. In my view, they are being squeezed from two sides. When it comes to working and contractual conditions, they are squeezed by the content industry. When it comes to piracy, they are being squeezed by illegal file sharing. Collectively, this squeeze has led to a lower standard of living for artists and lower profile workers in the content industry.
To say I am somehow beholden to the content industry ignores a number of actions I have taken. Here are a few from recent years. At a meeting of the Future of Music Coalition (an artists’ rights group) in 2002, I rebuked the industry saying “[t]echnology is forcing the record labels and the artists and the writers and the composers to come together...[t]he Internet says to the industry that you folks are yesterday's news, you're following outdated models, your business strategies don't work anymore, and your profit motive is showing rather vulgarly." I also proposed a series of reforms to benefit artists that was strongly opposed by the RIAA.
When the recording industry slipped a provision to reclassify recording artists songs as “work for hire” into a satellite television bill and thereby deprived artists of reversionary rights to their songs, I fought back, saying among other things, “[i]t is about time we separate the people in the recording industry from the recording artists. I keep hearing from the recording industry telling me what the recording artists want. I know a few recording artists, and we will be checking on this. This is appropriately a sensitive subject.” I have been outspoken about the industry practice of pay for play (or “payola”) as well.
When the film studios have moved film production to Canada or overseas, thus costing American workers their jobs, I stood up to them.
When the publishing industry sought to deprive freelance writers of their rights (something fellow Kos poster Jonathan Tasini knows quite a bit about), I introduced a bill to protect freelance writers, illustrators, cartoonists, graphic designers, and photographers. The publishers did not like that very much.
I hear from lots of people that artists don’t care about piracy. While it is true that some artists struggling to make it into the business don’t mind file sharing because it exposes their songs to a wider audience, many – many – artists have come directly to me saying that piracy is threatening their ability to make a living. I have heard similar complaints from animators, writers, grips, and cameramen, who have seen job opportunities diminish in part because of piracy.
To be sure, as I have said above, piracy is not the whole problem – industry practices are part of the problem as well, but it is part of the problem. So what should we do about it?
Some say we do not need to do anything because uploading digital content is already illegal. In a digital world, and an internet that spans the globe, locating people who steal content is nearly impossible in some cases. The costs of one such act of piracy can be astronomical.
So we turn to market forces and technology. In terms of market forces, I have consistently criticized both the recording industry and now Hollywood for being too slow to adapt to the digital world. For years, I was told that you simply “can’t compete with free.” I believe the advent of online digital music sales has shown that to be a falsehood. Music is still available for free through illegal downloading services, yet Apple’s iTunes music service has sold hundreds of millions of downloads. At the same time, it is a fact that rampant piracy of songs on the internet persists. The market doesn’t take care of everything.
So we turn to technology. We are now in a debate about whether copyright owners have a right to limit uses of the content they own the rights to; if so, what limitations are appropriate and how we ensure that those limitations are respected. One answer is found in the iPod and iTunes music store. Music purchased through the music store is subject to limitations which iTunes and the iPod attempt to ensure aren’t violated.
We are engaged in a debate about whether similar technology that recognizes limitation imposed by the copyright owner should be required in other devices. My cosponsorship of this bill is intended to start that debate, not end it.
I have said repeatedly that any legislation affecting the ability of consumers to use content must be carefully balanced to respect consumer expectations and rights and, of course, fair use. I certainly understand that there are some who believes this bill falls short in this regard, and would welcome an open and civil dialogue about those concerns.
However, Tuesday I have long planned a major announcement that I think will be welcomed by many participants on this blog. At this point I would request that you allow me some time to work on that, with my commitment to return and discuss this issue in more detail.
Comment #97: Genghis Khan said on 12/19/05 @ 8:00pm ET...
Thank you Mr. Conyers, and thank you for taking the time to engage real people on this issue.
I, however, completely disagree with the method being contemplated by your proposed legislation. I suggest you hop over to Slashdot for some of the discussion there. Real organized piracy will not even be slowed by this tactic. The only people who will lose will be folks like me who just want to watch/listen to what we want, where we want, when we want. Technology exists to facilitate this, not to enforce my financial fealty to an industry that is making record profits while at the same time branding me a criminal by default.
The original Napster had attempted to negotiate a licensing scheme with the RIAA. However, since the Napster model obviated the cradle-to-grave control the Industry maintained over artists' and their creation, the Industry declined to allow it. People were willing to pay for online access as long as it permitted FREEDOM. The current facilities are shallow substitutes for this freedom.
Like I said, all current attempts to legislation "media rights" automatically brand the consumer a criminal and do NOTHING to deter the organized piracy which takes a comparitively miniscule bite out of media industry profits. We had this same argument 30 years ago when casette tapes and VCRs came onto the public scene. There was a little leakage, but the vast majority enjoyed their newfound media consumption abilities and rewarded the content owners handsomely. That is an undeniable historical fact.
And yet the media industry continues to regurgitate the same FUD, only with slicker buzz-words.
I have to stop now, as my hand cramps make it very hard for me to type.
Comment #98: Rusty said on 12/19/05 @ 8:08pm ET...
Frankly, I'm more concerned about the future of Constitutional democracy in this country than I am about copyright law disputes between Hollywood et al and Napsterite file sharers.
Our government has been taken over by a pack of criminals, our Supreme Court is a kangaroo court, our military is raping and torturing prisoners, we're torching over a billion dollars a week into smoke and ashes in Iraq, our economy is a hollow shell about to collapse, America will be attacked by terrorists again and we can't prevent it, our media is infested by brainless chickenshits and propagandists, we'll be hit by twenty killer hurricanes every year, the polar ice caps are melting, the ozone layer is toast, New Orleans is gone, FEMA, the CIA, and the Justice Department are run by partisan hacks, American religious fundamentalists and Islamic fundamentalists both want to fight Armageddon, and North Korea and Iran will nuke whatever is left.
But hell, let's just forget about those minor details and throw hissy fits about the bleeping DTCSA!
Comment #99: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/19/05 @ 8:24pm ET...
Thank you Mr. Conyers for your reply.
Comment #100: GreyHawk121 said on 12/19/05 @ 8:39pm ET...
Thanks for taking the time to respond; sorry that it pulled you away from your other responsibilities. I felt some input from you would be important.
I am going to re-read your response, and share it where others have been discussing the legislation so that they can read it for themselves, and hopefully push along an intelligent discussion on it.
Thanks for surging ahead with attempts to preserve our Constitution, too.
Comment #101: Bill_o_Carolina said on 12/19/05 @ 9:34pm ET...
Comment #102: Alma said on 12/19/05 @ 10:38pm ET...
Thanks for responding JC. I think your quick response will stop some of the people from jumping on the get JC bandwagon. I hope you know that there were several people sticking up for you at KOS, and trying to get the mob to wait to hear from you. Quite a few Michigan people.
We are all eagerly awaiting your announcement tomorrow.
As always, you make me proud!
Comment #103: cwg21 said on 12/23/05 @ 5:56pm ET...
In reponse to your reply about internet response to the digital transition content security act This is so much bs, I very carefully read this bill, there is very little dealing with piracy in this proposal, we are talking about the so called analog hole. that is taking a digital signal and converting it to analog and back to digital to avoid copy protection mechanisms. Any true pirate, the ones tied to organized crime and drugs and what other scare words people like your backers always bellow out won't bother with, they have the resources to bypass any firewire or hdmi protection and pull the signal directly from those ports, in fact there are actually some very simple ways to do that,
No, the major target of this asualt is the dvr, the motion picture industry has been slowly chipping away at free use ever since sony betamax. The provisions in this bill will severely limit what you can do with your dvr to the point that tivo etc. are only useful for very limited time-shifting, you see the content providers have found some limited potential for revenue there, so they don't want to eliminate dvr's entirely, but they feel threatened by people recording series and keeping the recordings around for a while.
Normally when a new technology comes along industry needs to adapt to the new technology, but that is expensive, its far easier to contribute heavily to the political and personal gain of a congress person of your choice. www.ehomeupgrade.com recently (still on the site) published the financial disclosures of both rep Conyers and his cosponser, of course several key players in the entertainmnent industry are named.
This bill if passed would greatly hurt the ability of this country to innovate and compete with other contries whose product engineering is not dictated by the content providers whose content may represent and small percentage of the overall total content on a digital device. Think about what that means.
A little about myself, I have written my dismay to rep Conyers, since I am unfortunately a voter in his congressional district, I would love to futher debate this issue (firstname.lastname@example.org), I also look forward to his defeat in the next congressional election, and will do my best to convince everyone I come into contact with here in Michigan how bad John Conyers is for Michigan.
Comment #104: cwg21 said on 12/23/05 @ 6:19pm ET...
reply to Rusty. I guess I don't Share your view that our democracy is falling about. And feel that the digital transition content security act is an important issue. First of all it directly addresses this countries ability to compete in a world economy, it addresses our personal freedom, it questions the viability of an electorate when any special interest group with money to "buy" (harsh but true, Mr Conyers!!) a politician can get any bill passed without public debate , how many admendments are attached to important measures such as omnibus funding bills, to fasttrack acceptance. A policy that should be outlawed, but there isn't a politician willing to tackle that. It also brings into questions the integrety of such politicians, I haven't heard Rep Conyers deny the info obtained from opensecrets.org (hard to rebuttal your own tax returns)
Interesting that in our country , nothing is important until it becomes a crisis. For instance deverting funding from tecnology to social programs and then wondering perhaps years in the future why we've lost our lead in a key area such as physics or aerospace. For every action there is a reaction, this is just as true in politics as in physics.