Friday, December 15, 2006

Ho! Ho! Ho! Here Ya Go!

Well folks a little over a week and the the Christmas crowds will be in a feeding frenzy at the Malls of America to retrieve last minute gifts to embellish upon friends and relatives.

It is my wish to you all the merriest of Christmases for you and your families.
Don't forget a prayer to the God of your choice for the Troops in Iraq and the Iraqi innocents being subjected to the neo-con agenda.

That said, I leave the guilt behind and celebrate the holidays like so many holidays before it by visiting with good friends, enjoying some fine liquors, in moderation of course, and the requisite X-mas goodies.

I have a gift for all you faithful readers that have stuck with me through all the struggle and strife.

Get your keyboards warmed up and ready, I would like all who wish to, e-mail me with a story of a past or present holiday that you have had, or something holiday related, not real picky, just make up something if you feel creative.

I will sort through and post someones story everyday(Mon-Sun) as the lead story on this blog.
Consider it a chance to showcase your writing talents and celebrate the holidays also, the forum is yours all next week, a gift from me to you.

I will choose a holiday cartoon or something to be a topper on the story, unless you have a preference you wish to submit.

I don't want anyone to feel left out, I hate being left out, so anything goes!


Micki said...


Erling -- this site has a lot of information regarding the death penalty, including which states still have it (38 of them). One thing I learned from this site is that Alaska and Hawaii are the only states that have NEVER had the death penalty. None should!!!

I oppose the death penalty in all cases, without exception. The DP is the ultimate denial of human rights. It is cold-blooded, premeditated killing sanctioned by the state in the name of justice. The ultimate injustice! It is torture carried to the extreme -- death.

Erling -- good point about the lack of "fairness" if Senator Johnson should have to resign or, sadly, die.

Den -- interesting offer on the holiday stories. You should go first! hohoho

Micki said...

The United States performed 60 executions in 2005. Texas conducts more executions than any of the other U.S. states that still permit capital punishment, with 370 executions between 1976 and 2006.

DEN said...

Micki, not only that it is completely barbaric.

Micki said...

Even setting aside Senator's condition for the moment, Joe Conason poses the possibility that bush could give the GOP the Senate by appointing Joe Lieberman as Ambassador to the UN:

Just this week Lieberman joined a congressional delegation to Iraq that included John McCain, R-Ariz., providing moral support to the Arizona senator's call for an escalation of the American military effort. He has repeatedly denounced the "partisanship" of Democrats who criticize the war and the White House, a favor repaid by Karl Rove with open Republican support for his reelection campaign this fall. More broadly, Lieberman shares the world outlook of the Bush White House concerning not only the Mideast and Israel but also the global "war on terror," belligerence toward Iran and Syria, and a strict embargo against Cuba. He is quite comfortable with the GOP's neoconservative wing, as evidenced by his participation in organizations such as the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Committee on the Present Danger.

Although Lieberman vehemently disagrees with the president on the issue of climate change, his overall perspective wouldn't require any great adjustment to conform with administration policy. (Indeed, Lieberman cheerfully submitted to much more challenging adaptations in 2000 when he moved leftward to run as the Democratic vice-presidential nominee.) He is somewhat less obnoxious personally than Bolton, but not so very different in substance.

Micki said...


Impeachment doesn't go far enough -- the focus should be on putting them in prison.

DEN said...

Thats what I have been saying all along, indict not impeach, impeachment takes too long with too much debate, the evidence is clear, oath violations all around this gang of thugs.

There has been so much damage done it is obscene.

David B. Benson said...

den --- I fear that impeachment with removal from office is the only constitutional means to have President Pelosi. THEN indict!

DEN said...

I was under the impression that if a grand jury reaches a decision to indict for high crimes and misdemeanors, they would get yanked.

Section 4. The President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.

The trial would take 10 minutes, the evidence is there and undeniable. A "Slam dunk"


David B. Benson said...

den --- Yes, but does not the House have to approve the impeachment and the senate convict?

DEN said...

The House of Representatives shall choose their speaker and other officers; and shall have the sole power of impeachment.

And then theres this;

The Senate shall have the sole power to try all impeachments. When sitting for that purpose, they shall be on oath or affirmation. When the President of the United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: And no person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two thirds of the members present.

Judgment in cases of impeachment shall not extend further than to removal from office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit under the United States: but the party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to indictment, trial, judgment and punishment, according to law.

DEN said...

This is my reference site;

David B. Benson said...

den --- Right on! First impeach and remove of office. Then indict and indict and ...

DEN said...

Hurry, Hurry!Before anything else gets screwed up or more troops die.

Fast track the SOB's to the BIGhouse.

Micki said...

I'm not a lawyer and not a Constitutional scholar, but I have read any number of times that qualified legal experts agree that the "other high Crimes and Misdemeanors" refers to political crimes, not necessarily indictable crimes. I want bush indicted. Those "political crimes" are seen as egregious offenses against the federal government, which are an abuse of power, and an offense against our system of representative democracy, but impeachment and "conviction" by the Senate don't go far enough, because bush would essentially be a free man. Besides, if the House were to draw up Articles of Impeachment, Cheney and Bush could preemptively resign (a la the Spiro Agnew/Richard Nixon scenario), a new GOP prez and veep would be in place by the appointment process, and the country would "heal" blah blah blah. And, not one DAMN person would be held accountable! (Worrying about a President Pelosi as a result of the impeachment process is just not realistic!)

It's increasingly obvious that bush has violated the public trust as evidenced in his abuse of power by taking the nation to war under false circumstances -- fixed intelligence. To my knowledge, the REAL issue of the White House's use of the Iraqi intelligence has NEVER been investigated; in fact, that has been out-of-bounds.

I think George W. Bush deserves to be impeached. However, I think it might be more likely to hold him accountable for his crimes through a "coalition of willing" international governments, citizens, legal organizations, and human rights groups coming together to mount legal action against him to show, beyond a reasonable doubt, that GWB deliberately violated U.S. treaty obligations and international law with his military invasion of a sovereign nation.

David B. Benson said...

Micki --- What appointment process? The Leader of the House is third in line for the Presidency...

O'Reilly said...

Winning hearts and minds
By Glenn Greenwald

As you may recall, one of the primary "justifications" for invading Iraq was that we were going to reduce anti-American resentment in the Middle East -- which fuels terrorist recruitment -- and therefore make the world safer for our country. They were going to so appreciate everything we did for Iraq and Afghanistan that they would realize how great we were, like us much more, and therefore not want to attack us anymore. How is that going?


David B. Benson said...

Related to nothing else, the world's tallest man is 7' 9" tall! There is a picture of him after he saved a couple of douphins at a zoo. Sure towers over the Han Chinese around him...

David B. Benson said...

Bafflegab has been with us since 1952, when a Mark Smith invented the word.

Micki said...

Dr. B -- The Speaker of the House does, indeed, hold the 3rd space in line to the presidency.

The appointment process that I was referring to was specifically related to the Spiro Agnew/Richard Nixon scenario. As you recall, in 1973 Spiro Agnew resigned as Vice President when he was facing criminal charges of tax fraud and money laundering. Rather than face the possibility of impeachment, Agnew resigned and then pleaded nolo contendere to the criminal charges.

Agnew's resignation triggered the first use of the 25th Amendment -- Nixon appointed Gerald Ford as Vice President, and Ford was confirmed by both houses of Congress. Later Nixon resigned, after articles of impeachment had been drawn up; Ford ascended to the Presidency and then Ford triggered the 25th Amendment for the 2nd time, when he selected Nelson Rockefeller as Vice President.

We then had both an un-elected Republican President and un-elected Vice President.

It is my belief that if dick cheney and/or george w. bush were definitely facing impeachment -- as evidenced by the House drawing up Articles of Impeachment (or by an unambiguous, verifiable "leak" that it was imminent) the same "appointment process" would immediately be put into use, in hopes of continuing GOP control.

Jeanne said...

I agree with you. The illegality of the war, the manuverings to get elected, the illegal wiretapping, on and on and on. It is necessary to bring this administration to justice.

David B. Benson said...

Micki --- I think I understand. But both houses have to agree to the appointment, yes?

Micki said...

Go here to read the XXV Amendment

Ratified 2/10/1967

Jeanne said...

By the way I haven't been hearing too much about the immigration raid on Swift. That is going to be huge. I'm telling you, huge. The Latino population in the country is going to rebel as they start to realize that legal or not they are targeted. I see protests. I see boycotts. I see riots.

Democracy Now is the only place where I have seen good coverage.

Micki said...

Well, yes. A majority vote in both Houses, which would, IMO, undoubtedly occur.

Micki said...

A word I like is Pecksniffian. I wanted to use that word for years and lost an opportunity when it was recently presented to me! Damn!

Micki said...

Dr. B, sometimes those who use few words are bafflegabbers to me, because they make little sense when they attempt to be too clever by half.

Micki said...

Milton Smith.

Jeanne said...

Here's another article on the immigration story.

"Identity Theft" a Red Herring in DHS Raids, Numbers Show

..."[H]undreds of these illegal aliens may have illegally assumed the identities of U.S. citizens," the press release goes on the explain, "and improperly used their Social Security numbers and other identity documents in order to gain employment at Swift facilities."

Hundreds? A couple dozen, maybe. At a press conference yesterday, Chertoff explained the difference between the rhetorical numbers and the actual ones by saying he expected the number of identity-theft related arrests to rise as arrestees are processed.

But that sounds like optimistic spin: according to an ICE official I interviewed yesterday, the federal agents raiding the plants had technology on-site to check the validity of workers' immigration documents.

"We had access to databases to ensure the green cards they were showing us were real ID cards and belonged to the person who held it," spokesman Michael Keegan told me.

So the question remains: what was the purpose of the raids? The Denver Post says they were a way for the Bush administration to pressure Congress to act on immigration -- the Congress which is in recess for several weeks, but has already said immigration is a top issue for next session. The Chicago Tribune quotes one Beltway cynic who thinks the raids are just a harsh cover for the White House to push amnesty for illegals next year. And of course we've talked to one lobbyist who says she has no earthly idea why DHS took action when it did.
Read some of the comments. Where are these people right now? There kids were left stranded at school while these people were shipped out of state. It was done the day before one of their holiest days of the year. This administration has an amazing ability to whip up nasty trouble.

Micki said...

Yeah, Jeanne, what was this REALLY all about? Was it a practice run for future raids?

The identity theft canard is "red meat" these days, with all the yakking about stolen SS numbers, credit cards, etc.

(BTW, if someone steals my SS#, wouldn't the FICA taxes withheld go to MY SS account bottom line?)

Jeanne said...

I personally think the administration is testing the waters. They are looking to see how media reacts to it. And what they are seeing is that media is ignoring it.

They are doing in this country what they have been doing in Iraq and Afghanistan on a continual basis. I'm not so sure this is totally about the illegal immigrant issue. I wonder if it is about a vulnerable culture being terrorized to see how the American people will react to it.

I see real trouble when the Latino culture in this country stands up to it and the white culture reacts to the Latino reaction. The Bush administration does have genius for one thing and that is creating cultural strife. They should be solving this problem with real solutions not this bullshit attempt at appeasing a few people and attempting to build a base in the south (if that's what they are doing).

Jeanne said...

Here's another example of the Bush administrations idea of leadership.

Kenneth Tomlinson's ethical problems don't prevent reappointment
Bush crony re-nominated as chair of the Broadcasting Board of Governors

On November 14, in a move indicative of President Bush's intention to continue to surround himself with political cronies with questionable ethics records, Kenneth L. Tomlinson was re-nominated by the president as chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors -- the agency that supervises the Voice of America, Radio Free Europe, the Arab-language Alhurra, Radio Marti and other government radio and television operations that are heard by an estimated 100 million people worldwide.

...According to the Times, "a report... by the inspector general at the State Department... [found] that Tomlinson had used his office to run a horse-racing operation and that he had improperly put a friend on the payroll." The Associated Press pointed out that the investigation found that while with the BBG, Tomlinson "signed invoices worth about $245,000 for a friend [retired VOA employee Les Daniels] without the knowledge of other board members or staff."

"Tomlinson also used the board's office resources to support his private horse racing operation and over-billed the organization for his time, in some instances billing both the Broadcasting Board of Governors and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting for the same time worked."

Jeanne said...

Did you think the Bush administration was capable in some way when they took office? Did you think (as I did) really how much damage can they do?

Well, I haven't seen this on MSNBC or Yahoo.

An Important Story You Didn't See

Whether you are among the growing majority of Americans that think Bush is doing an awful job, or a member of the shrinking minority of those that believe he's doing a the right thing, you have to be bowled by this story. Just when I think I can close the book on the breathtaking incompetence of this administration, hard facts like this cross my bow and I have to reconsider.

Yesterday the WSJ's defense correspondent, Gregg Jaffe, reported that US Army officials have told the White House they are broke. Worse than broke actually. The Army, despite its $168 billion budget, is out of money and being forced to cannibalize operations, here and in the war zone, just to keep the lights on.
This is a really good article.

Jeanne said...

My brother works for a food company. He told me one complaint is equal to thirty. So what does this article tell you?

About Face: Soldiers Call for Iraq Withdrawal

After appearing only seven weeks ago on the Internet, the Appeal for Redress, brainchild of 29-year-old Navy seaman Jonathan Hutto, has already been signed by nearly 1,000 US soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen, including dozens of officers--most of whom are on active duty. Not since 1969, when some 1,300 active-duty military personnel signed an open letter in the New York Times opposing the war in Vietnam, has there been such a dramatic barometer of rising military dissent.

Alan said...

New animation...

Holiday Gift Guide

Alan said...

The Saturday Cartoons (political)