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Archive for Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Bravo to Feingold

March 21, 2006

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To the editor:

I applaud Wisconsin Sen. Russell Feingold's motion to censure President Bush for illegal domestic NSA wiretapping. Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts, in contrast, made what was once illegal, legal. Finally, finally, finally a Democrat on the national level who has the courage to say enough is enough, this president is not above the law!

Over the last five years my concern for where our country is heading has steadily grown. There has been a multitude of actions by the present administration that I view with the gravest concern. Up to now Democratic leaders have appeared spineless and confused. Sen. Feingold's courage and leadership is a breath of fresh air. Bravo!

Daniel Patrick Schamle,

Lawrence

Comments

ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

holygrailale - KBR Halliburton offer me a job. I couldn't morally take it. They have a back-log of 8 billion dollars, mainly in overseas building operations, and their benefits stink.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 8 years, 5 months ago

Feingold has been standing up all along. Too bad he's been nearly all alone.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 8 years, 5 months ago

http://www.thenation.com/doc/20060327/greiderweb

"Senator Russ Feingold is an embarrassment to the US Senate, which makes him an authentic hero of the Republic. The Wisconsin senator gets up and says out loud what half of the country is thinking and talks about every day. This President broke the law and lied about it; he trashed the Constitution and hides himself in the flag. Feingold asks: Shouldn't the Senate say something about this, at least express our disapproval? He introduces a resolution of censure and calls for debate.

Well, that tore it in the august chamber of lawmakers. Democrats scurried away like scared rats. And Republicans chortled at the thought. You want to censure our warrior President, the guy who defends us every day against terrorist attacks? Let's have a vote right now, the Republican leader demanded. Yuk, yuk.

The joke is obvious to everyone in the Washington club--politics trumps principle, especially when it is about something as esoteric as the Constitution. It's a nonstory, the club agrees, not a constitutional crisis."

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james bush 8 years, 5 months ago

Former Senator Allan Simpson is a part of some sort of bipartisan group to get things in government done better in the future. He's a sensible guy. I hope some sensible democrats can be found to work with him.

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bankboy119 8 years, 5 months ago

That's getting a little cocky there thinker.

In other news...anyone see North Korea say they could use a pre-emptive strike to defend themselves?

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drewdun 8 years, 5 months ago

"When I wake up November 8, 2006 and see the Repubs. have gained even more seats, the lefts' antics will not have nearly as much entertainment value." - rightthinker

you trying to convince us or yourself, assclown?

"Most likely, his little shenanigan will be last weeks news, well, next week."

Keep on belittling those of us who dwell in reality, because all the flag waving, pandering to mindless fanatics (religious or otherwise), tough talk, and insults cannot cover up the fact that the Bush administration has been an unmitigated disaster and national tragedy from the beginning. Worse yet (for you, at least) everyone in the country who has minimal critical thinking faculties recognizes this, and most will vote accordingly in Nov (unless of course the gay menace suddenly reappears).

"I almost pole-vault out of bed every morning anymore to turn on Fox & Freinds to see what bizarre offerings the left has any given day."

Ahh, Fox News, that bastion of conservative morality and common-sense that likes to showcase the "bizarre offerings of the left." Don't they have a guy there who is a convicted felon (ollie) and a guy who likes to call up subordinates to sexually harass them while penetrating himself with a vibrator (o'reilly)?

(check it out yourself) http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/1013043mackris1.html

that's alright, i'm sure upstanding moral citizens such as rt, arminius, and other sundry followers, hero-worshippers and garbage regurgitation vehicles don't mind as long as they point out how the all-powerful all-controlling liberal elite is destroying the country.

Seriously, where do you guys come up with this stuff? Its almost too rich to take.

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meggers 8 years, 5 months ago

Pilgrim: "What I love is that the Demorats don't even like it. Several Demorat members of the House have come out lately and said Feingold is screwing up their chances of taking back control because he is such a whacko in the minds of most Americans. They wish he would just sit down and shut up."

Do you have some direct quotes from democrats to back that up, Pilgrim? I agree that many democrats are reluctant to move forward with censure right now, but not because they view Feingold as a "wacko". Instead, they worry about diverting public attention from other issues that are negatively affecting Bush's approval rating. They also (wrongly) worry about being accused of being soft on terror or unpatriotic- those aren't labels anyone running for reelection wants to be associated with.

Still, each and every US Senator took an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States, as did the President. The US Senate, in turn, has a fundamental responsibility to hold the President accountable when he breaks the law. Senator Feingold has shown more than a few times in his career that he isn't afraid to do the right thing, even when it isn't politically expedient to do so. Whether you agree with his positions or not, Feingold is at least man of integrity.

And as far as debating the resolution right when it was presented, I believe he was trying to prevent it from going to an immediate vote, something I believe Senator Lott made a motion to do before Feingold even presented it. I think if he had stayed there, the republicans could have moved to vote on the measure without a referral to committee, investigations, arguments, evidence, etc- in other words, the issue would have quietly disappeared. Not to mention, the floor time Senator Spector had was his alone- no debate was scheduled or anticipated that day. Feingold made a smart move by not falling into the trap.

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Linda Endicott 8 years, 5 months ago

Every time someone says something that criticizes God Bush in any way, all the posts just turn into the rightthinker, pilgrim, and arminius show.

It's like it's one huge Bush monster, with three heads...

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meggers 8 years, 5 months ago

It seems more reasonable to trace things step-by-step, rather than to leap to another point in history. Since the current administration got us into the war, perhaps we should start there.

Were Powell and Rice both wrong in 2001, when they said Hussein did not have the potential to threaten his neighbors? If so, what changed their opinion? And why did the WMD "evidence" begin appearing AFTER the following meetings took place?

http://downingstreetmemo.com/strawtext.html

http://downingstreetmemo.com/rickettstext.html

http://downingstreetmemo.com/docs/meyermemo.pdf

http://downingstreetmemo.com/manningtext.html

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Curtiss 8 years, 5 months ago

I knew when I saw this letter that Arminius would be here immediately (the very day they announced that the Whitewater Investigation has finally ended) to blame it all on Clinton.

He was, and he did, as he furiously pecked out on his little keyboard:

"At that same time, draft dodger Bill Clinton was smoking dope...."

Bill Clinton, draft dodger:

Works his way to a Rhodes scholarship, gets an education the hard way, he earns it. Wasn't drafted because he was in school, getting great grades.

George W. Bush, patriot:

Daddy buys him a soft non-combat draft-free National Guard gig, which he deserts in wartime before he has to take a drug test.

Bill Clinton, druggie:

Smokes marijuana once, outside the U.S., doesn't get off, never tries it again.

George W. Bush, sterling example of all that's good and right:

"Claims" to have not used cocaine since 1978, although we've seen no evidence of that. Videotaped staggering drunk at a friend's wedding. Tried to beat up father in drunken rage. Arrested for drunk driving. Sentenced to a year of public service. Married a marijuana dealer who killed her boyfriend after she broke up with him.

So if Bush's popularity plummets from its current thirties, to 20% support, then 10%, then 1%... when it gets down to just one guy, I guess we all know who it will be. Hang in there, Arminius. You've already told us how much it sucks to be you, and I, for one, really feel sorry for you.

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

drewdun - that is truly one of the funniest things I have read on the LJW blog in a while. Seriously, I was on the floor laughing, especially the part about o'reilly. Thanks for the good laughs......and truth!

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james bush 8 years, 5 months ago

Bush is not Hitler! Democrat politician wannabes, Hollywood elitists and liberal entertainers would like us all to think that! Bush is not Slick Willy Clinton... glib and beguiling... "feeling your pain", Or a lying Clinton...."I did not have sex with that woman...."

And, unfortunately, he's not very persuasive.

But only idiot Bush haters like Teddy Kennedy and is type would be helping killers and suicidal islamic fundamentalists who are fighting our men and women in Iraq and Afganistan by not joining in a united front to stop terrorism!!! Kennedy, Durbin, Pelosie, Dean, and Shumer are not helping this country by their constant criticism of Bush and our war effort!!

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james bush 8 years, 5 months ago

Let's win the damm thing in Iraq then play politics!!!!

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Jamesaust 8 years, 5 months ago

The Feingold showboating is all a bit silly. Cart before the horse stuff. Excellent demonstration of why any Democrat victory will come in spite of themselves.

Congress has many powers it could exercise that might actually be useful.
How about actual hearings to establish what precisely has/has not been going on - you know, with oaths and subpoenas?
W says Congress authorized his actions? Well, how about a Feingold resolution to "un"authorize them? Congress has plenty of war powers. How about exercising them? Congress ultimately holds the power of the purse. How about 'Bolandizing' the situation -- "No monies of these United States shall be used for [x,y,z]. Violation of this statute shall constitute a Class A felony under penalty of $100,000 per incident and not less than 10 years incarceration."

Then - and only then - is such constitutional crisis provoking action warrented (no pun intended).

Come on Sen. Feingold. I know you've already persuaded Howard Dean but perhaps you need to build your case with the public first?

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james bush 8 years, 5 months ago

I don't argue for Bush. I want people to ask whether they want to "help" suicidal killer islamics or the men and women fighting for the USA!!!

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james bush 8 years, 5 months ago

How can anyone looking at news reports of bombers spreading murder and mayhem and killing ordinary people in Iraq and then think they aren't the bad guys.

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james bush 8 years, 5 months ago

Does anyone really think that censuring Bush or impeaching him, Cheney or anybody else would Keep these islamic fundamentalist creeps from killing people who don't follow their allah?

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james bush 8 years, 5 months ago

Enough said on this! Bush says "God bless". Would anyone here prefer "allah"? THINK ABOUT IT!!!!

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 8 years, 5 months ago

Jamesaust

"How about actual hearings to establish what precisely has/has not been going on - you know, with oaths and subpoenas? "

Republicans control all committees and whatever hearings might happen in them.

You can call what Feingold did a stunt, but the Republicans are doing everything they can to avoid hearings and oaths and subpoeonas, and I suspect that his "stunt" was primarily done to draw attention to this downright criminal inaction.

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drewdun 8 years, 5 months ago

Jamesaust, jimmy, rt, and arminius:

I wonder if you have seen the film "Rocky IV." Near the beginning of this masterpiece, there is a performance by James Brown of his song "Living in America." While this is undoubtedly a GREAT song, and quite possibly represents the pinnacle of American artistic achievement, perhaps all of you would be better served by a change in the lyrics: something that might go like this: "Living in reality..."

Because, c'mon - the posts from you guys clearly demonstrate that you all dwell in an alternate universe; in this unfortunate realm the clock stopped in or around late 1998, Democrats and evilliberals (yes, one word) = Ingsoc, and where W is just a poor, misunderestimated guy trying to lead us through a rough patch, and Bill Clinton represents the source of all evil in the world.

Whenever my family and friends and I have heated political discussions, whether dealing with what's the matter with Kansas or the previously discussed 'alternate universe' theory (its really the same issue), I always come back to why change will be so hard in this neck of the woods: true believers, those who buy EVERYTHING this administration and their party sell, who believe no contradictions exist therein, and who disregard all contrary facts and assertions about their 'Great Leader' as Bush-hating liberal propaganda and media slant, because, in the end, Bush & co., are good and righteous men - these are delusional people, people who most certainly do not dwell in reality and deal in facts. They are among the most contemptible people most of us will ever encounter. In a word, they are not reasonable people. And everyone knows, you cannot reason with unreasonable people. Its as simple as that.

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james bush 8 years, 5 months ago

Drewdun, that's an opinion!? Goodnight all.

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Linda Endicott 8 years, 5 months ago

What are you guys going to do when Bush is no longer president? He can't run again, you know.

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

holygrailale - yes there is. I have heard the recording and i don't think there is any question that it is him. I believe you can listen to it at www.thesmokinggun.con. I'm pretty sure that is where I heard it. I just can't get over the remarks he made while seeing the Harlem Boy's Choir perform.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 8 years, 5 months ago

"None of us is saying that Bush has not made mistakes--all presidents do. However, Bush's mistakes in no way absolve the Clinton administration of mistakes that put us on a path to 9/11 and our current situation in the Middle East. That's the reality, even if you refuse to admit it."

What you say ad nauseum is that any mistakes Clinton might have made (and he made plenty) somehow absolves BushCo from responsibility for the lies, distortions, exaggeration and crony corruption they have given us, all of which make Clinton look almost saintly infallible, and that's quite a feat.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 8 years, 5 months ago

No, I said BushCo's record makes him look almost saintly infallible. I doubt that your silly website even mentions Bush's qualifications for impeachment.

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

Arminius - When I worked with you at the LBL I always admired your intelligence, journalistic skills, and ability to think critically. Why are you so adamant about defending Bush when you know, deep down, that he is one of the worst Presidents this country has ever had?

Clinton is an easy scapegoat; however, we must consider, as defender stated, the problems with US/Middle-East relations started before his presidency. Clinton made critical errors as well, ie: Somalia, but he was at least able to complete a sentence when he spoke publicly. I listened to Bush in a press conference yesterday from the Whitehouse. It reminded me of listening to a 6 year old speak. Didn't exactly instill confidence in me.

BTW - What is a moonbat?

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

Nevermind on the moonbat question. I looked it up on wikipedia.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 8 years, 5 months ago

Bush I first initiated US involvement in Somalia in late 1992, primarily because of possible Somali oil reserves. So even that "Clinton debacle" has its origins with BushCo.

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

Bozo - my reference was to Clinton's choice to withdraw troops from Somalia after the "blackhawk down" incident. His choice to do so was a clear message to enemies of the US that we would tuck tale and run if we were engaged and suffered casualties. This isn't the typical model followed by a superpower military. I personally don't think a full scale invasion was neccessary but it should have strengthened our resolve in that situation.

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

holygrailale - Perhaps the recording isn't on smokinggun. My fault. I have actually heard the recording on the web. It is O'reilley talking dirty and it is clearly him. I will try to find it and post the link.

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

Defender - according to Wikipedia there is a counterpart to the moonbat. It is the Idiotarian.

holygrailale - I am still trying to find the link.

Arminius - I felt safer when Clinton was president. At least he was keeping our troops in reserve to repel foreign invaders. The US is currently facing the thin green line. Considering countries such as China have a military twice the size of ours, comparable weapons technology, and a growing energy crisis I don't feel too good about things right now. Remember why Japan bombed Pearl Harbor.

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

Arminius - I understand, but you are not addressing the question I posed. If Bush sees China as a threat, which he does, why has he stretched our military resources so thin on Iraq when it is questionable that Iraq really ever posed a threat to the US. Considering China's very capable military it doesn't seem as if it was the best tactical decision he could have made. However, neither did Clinton's decision as alleged in the very biased article you sent to me from a conservative, republican site.

Since we are sharing biased and non-objective links. Please refer to this one. It is a great picture of George W. Bush, the Foreign Diplomacy Mastermind, up to his usual antics in China:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/4454738.stm

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wonderhorse 8 years, 5 months ago

ben_ness

The Pacific Ocean makes a great moat. I believe the USN Pacific Fleet would have something to say about a Chinese attempt to cross it. They (the Chinese) don't have the transportation capability to cross it in the face of any kind of opposition. Don't worry, you're safe from the red hordes.

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

Wonderhorse - I have read recent DoD reports regarding China's very formidable and capable navy. If they decided, at any point, to attempt to seize control of shipping lines in the Persian Gulf, or attack Taiwan, it wouldn't be a cakewalk (these are the two areas of concern in the defense sector). I am not worried about them invading the US but all fingers are pointing towards a very high likelihood we fill be compelled to face off with China at some point. It won't be a cakewalk and the thought of it is VERY scary as it could escalate very quickly to the worst extremes.

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wonderhorse 8 years, 5 months ago

Yep, could/would get nasty. I've got confidence, though, in our boys on the high seas (I'm Army myself). I don't think they could achieve enough superiority to even get across to Taiwan. DoD reports usually have worst case scenarios. Before Desert Storm, the DoD briefs we got made it seem like we were facing a very high casualty rate due to the formidability of the Iraqi army and the defenses they had prepared.

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wonderhorse 8 years, 5 months ago

holy

I had not talked about any one of the points that you brought up. You and Arminius et al fight this one out. I don't want in it. Neither one of you listens to the other one, and that is amusing. My only contribution to anything on this subject was a side conversation I was having with ben_ness that DoD briefings are always full of doom and gloom worst case scenario stuff.

That being said--We know he had WMD because he had used them against the Iranians and the Kurds. The question is, what happened to them? My own personal opinion is that he had them taken deep into the desert and buried--an engineer squad with a bulldozer, who were then executed. When the executioners got back and reported a successful mission, they too were executed. No tracks. At least, that's how I would have done it if I were Saddam. Once again, my opinion. We may never know exactly what happened to them, unless Saddam decides to write a book.

Now, you and Arminius can get back to your fun. Please leave me out of it.

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

Wonderhorse - I don't have the same faith in "our boys" as you do. It is not "our boys" capability that is the problem. It is the number of them. The DoD report I read didn't illustrate worst case scenarios, it stated fact. Within several years, China will have a MORE formidable military strength than our own. They also have incredible resolve, dedication, and discipline. If we were to face the Chinese Military in conflict it would not be a cakewalk as the invasion of Iraq was.

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wonderhorse 8 years, 5 months ago

My hope is that we don't have to. I'm not convinced that we could defeat the Chinese army with our full strength, but we would have to go to them to find out. I don't believe they are capable of crossing any great bodies of water to confront us elsewhere, sort of like Napoleon or Hitler looking across the English Channel.

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

Wonderhorse - That is my hope too.

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wonderhorse 8 years, 5 months ago

"Unless, of course, General Sada is making it all up to sell books......"

If I were in his place, I would. I still like my personal theory about the burial in the desert. That way, if Saddam could get rid of the pesky Americans again, he'd still have his toys. If not, then he wouldn't get caught red-handed. And, yes, I believe he would have/could have buried his stash without his AF 2nd in command knowing about it. I don't think he would have told anyone, except maybe his sons, and we can't ask them. I would also throw up smoke screens (Syria) to misdirect.

ben_ness I think that with the current climate in China, we might be watching the beginnings of another people's rebellion in China, one that I think we should stay well clear of. The last time we stuck our nose into a Chinese rebellion--right after WWII (Mao)--we ended up with another enemy. That's what happens when you back the wrong horse.

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ben_ness 8 years, 5 months ago

Wonderhorse - aren't they calling it "the pitchfork rebellion".

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wonderhorse 8 years, 5 months ago

ben_ness

That's the term I saw used. As near as I can figure it out, the farmers are angry that their land is being sold by local government to industry/large corporations (not American ones that I know of), and then the officials are pocketing the money. Any attempts by the farmers to go through official channels to protest are being ignored or met with intimidation and violence. The farmers are starting to fight back.

holygrailale

The farmers aren't that concerned with the central gov't long range planning--all they know about/care about is the immediate loss of their livelihood.

Historically, corruption in gov't officials in China is almost institutionalized (except under the Mongols, who were very agressive and violent when it came to corrupt officials). It will be interesting to see what happens when the rural pitchfork rebellion hooks up with the urban disaffected students.

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wonderhorse 8 years, 5 months ago

Not very strong, thus far. It is literally a "pitchfork" rebellion, with farmers armed with pitchforks going up against local (cops? militia?) armed with weapons. Of course, those are only the brushes I have heard about. Who knows what is actually happening. It's a BIG country, for the most part closed to those of us in the West. I would suspect, though, that if Time could get a report like this, that we are just seeing the tip of the iceberg. My opinion. I guess I'll have to dig to see if there are other reports from other countries sources.

The problem the gov't is going to have to face is, once you have displaced enough people, and they have nowhere to go and no work and nothing to do, what are they going to do? Idle, and desparate, hands.....

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