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Sunday, August 10, 2008

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Election Shocker!

By Robert Dreyfuss

Biblical scholars in Colorado Springs have uncovered startling evidence that Senator John McCain may be the Antichrist. Their conclusions, while highly controversial, may have a dramatic impact on the 2008 elections, since many Bible-believing Christians have already expressed doubts about McCain's fealty to Christianity.

The analysis was conducted by the respected True Bible Society, and it will be published next month in the End Times Journal.

The analysis was especially ironic, given that it came out just one day after McCain was accused of subtly hinting that Barack Obama could be the Antichrist. McCain ran a commercial depicting Obama as "The One," giving rise to charges that he was sending a subliminal messages to anti-Obama Christians.

"What started us looking at this issue is the fact that Senator McCain has declared his intention to maintain US forces in Iraq for a hundred years," said David Jenkins, a leading Biblical scholar. "That means that McCain wants to control Babylon for at least a century." According to many scholars of the Book of Revelation, the Antichrist will try to rebuild the ancient city of Babylon in order to use it as a springboard for an international effort at world domination. Ultimately, the Antichrist will marshal forces from Babylon to spark a showdown with Christian and Jewish-led forces in the battle of Armageddon.

"We believe that the End Times is near, based on the pattern of wars, earthquakes. and other strange phenomena we've been witnessing since the start of the New Millennium," said Jenkins. "Given that it may be imminent, the person who controls Babylon must be the Antichrist." Until 2003, many Christians believed that Saddam Hussein might be the Antichrist, since he started excavations to restore Babylon in the mid 1970s. But Hussein's death meant that the Antichrist is someone else. Since Obama wants to get out of Iraq, he can't be the Antichrist either, concluded Jenkins....(Click here for remainder of article).

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Ivins Attorney: Government's Case Is 'Speculation'

Morning Edition, August 8, 2008

The government is getting ready to officially close its case against Bruce Ivins, the man officials say killed five people with deadly anthrax. But actual closure may be a long way off. In an exclusive interview with NPR, Ivins' attorney, Paul Kemp, said the FBI got the wrong man.

Kemp said there was nothing more frustrating than watching the government unveil its case against his client at a news conference. All he wanted to do was object.

"It is nothing but speculation, the government's case," he said.

Kemp represented Ivins for the past year until Ivins committed suicide last week. Now Kemp will never get a chance to test the government's evidence in court and, he believes, clear Ivins' name.

"We don't convict people on the idea that they may demonstrate eccentric behavior, or that they had the opportunity to commit a crime or had the knowledge to commit a crime, and that's what the government's saying," Kemp said.

The case against Ivins largely rests on new scientific techniques that investigators believe link Ivins to the anthrax used in the attacks. Officials say genetic analysis of the anthrax spores shows they match a flask in Ivins' possession. Officials called it the "murder weapon." ...(Click here for remainder of article).

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The Shamelessness of John McCain

By Jacob Freeze

Almost every politician in the United States is either a bullshitter or a shameless bullshitter, and the few really honest political figures on the national scene, like Dennis Kucinich and Wesley Clark, are attacked so relentlessly by the commercial media that they never poll above single digits.

Although the progressive blogosphere constantly proposes one plan or another to "restore" integrity or diversity to the commercial media, every form and outlet of the advertising-supported news industry is inextricably committed to untruth, because its core business is enticing consumers to trade away their lives for fetishized trash. The news industry bullshits for a living, and telling the truth is too difficult for a hobby.

So we're probly stuck with bullshitters running the show in Washington for as long as the American brain is dominated by advertising, but it still isn’t unreasonable to ask for a little moderation in our steady diet of political caca. Serve it up, but don't grab me by the hair and stick my face in it!

Ever since John McCain endorsed the Bush/Cheney program of torturing "enemy combatants," he has been so deeply submerged in the most shameless bullshit that the only evidence of an actual human being wandering around at the bottom of the pool is an occasional bubble that breaks the surface and exhales yet another ridiculously distorted attack on Barack Obama....(Click here for remainder of article).

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Chertoff Misleads on Laptop Searches, Feingold Charges

By Ryan Singel

Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold opposes border agents searching through Americans' laptops without cause, and he doesn't like how Homeland Security Chief Michael Chertoff articulated the government's current policy in an interview with Threat Level on Monday.

In that conversation, Chertoff said that in practice, border agents rely on a real suspicion to decide whose laptop to look into or even seize, but that he opposes creating a legal standard for searching Americans' electronics at the border since it would just lead to too much litigation.

Feingold, an outspoken civil libertarian -- the only senator to vote against the Patriot Act -- begs to differ.
Secretary Chertoff's description of the newly published DHS policy on laptop searches was not just misleading – it was flat-out wrong. In an interview with Wired.com, the Secretary stated that "[w]e only do [laptop searches] when we put you into secondary [screening] and we only put you into secondary [screening] ... when there is a reason to suspect something."

But the actual policy that DHS published says the exact opposite. It does not even mention secondary screening, let alone limit laptop searches to those cases, and it expressly states that Americans' laptops may be searched "absent individualized suspicion."
(Click here for remainder of article).

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McCain misrepresents Obama's tax proposals again. And again, and again.

By Brooks Jackson | factcheck.org
Aug 9, 2008 | Updated: 12:35 p.m. ET Aug 9, 2008


Summary
McCain released three new ads with multiple false and misleading claims about Obama's tax proposals.

A TV spot claims Obama once voted for a tax increase "on people making just $42,000 a year." That's true for a single taxpayer, who would have seen a tax increase of $15 for the year – if the measure had been enacted. But the ad shows a woman with two children, and as a single mother, she would not have been affected unless she made more than $62,150. The increase that Obama once supported as part of a Democratic budget bill is not part of his current tax plan anyway.

A Spanish-language radio ad claims the measure Obama supported would have raised taxes on "families" making $42,000, which is simply false. Even a single mother with one child would have been able to make $58,650 without being affected. A family of four with income up to $90,000 would not have been affected.

The TV ad claims in a graphic that Obama would "raise taxes on middle class." In fact, Obama's plan promises cuts for middle-income taxpayers and would increase rates only for persons with family incomes above $250,000 or with individual incomes above $200,000.

The radio ad claims Obama would increase taxes "on the sale of your home." In fact, home-sale profits of up to $500,000 per couple would continue to be exempt from capital gains taxes. Very few sales would see an increase under Obama's proposal to raise the capital gains rate.

A second radio ad, in English, says, "Obama has a history of raising taxes" on middle-class Americans. But that's false. It refers to a vote that did not actually result in a tax increase and could not have done so.

These ads continue what's become a pattern of misrepresentation by the McCain campaign about his opponent's tax proposals....(Click here for remainder of article).

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Obama: McCain embracing harmful Bush policies

Associated Press
Published: Saturday August 9, 2008


Barack Obama accused Republican rival John McCain on Saturday of embracing Bush administration policies that he said shortchange Americans by favoring an extended war in Iraq at the expense of fixing the nation's underfunded schools and crumbling roads and bridges.

Obama, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, used a national radio address to trumpet his campaign proposals to end U.S. dependence on foreign oil and to conclude the war in Iraq responsibly "by asking the Iraqis to take responsibility for their future and to invest in their own country."

The Illinois Democrat pointed to a recent Government Accountability Office report that found the Iraqi government could end the year with as much as a $79 billion budget surplus while at the same time spending only a fraction on reconstruction costs that are largely borne by the U.S. McCain will only continue Bush war policies with an "open-ended commitment" that has been unsuccessful, Obama said.

"Let me be clear: We are well over five years into a war in a country that had nothing to do with the 9/11 attacks," he said. "Our country has spent nearly a trillion dollars in Iraq, even as our schools are underfunded, our roads and bridges are crumbling and the cost of everything from groceries to a gallon of gas is soaring."

"Now think for a moment about what we could have done with the hundreds and hundreds of billions of dollars that we've spent in Iraq," Obama said. "We could have made historic investments in alternative energy to create millions of American jobs. We could have headed off $4 dollar a gallon gas and begun to end the tyranny of oil in our time."...(Click here for remainder of article).

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FBI admits spying on multiple US reporters, apologizes

Offers no explanation for spying

John Byrne
Published: Saturday August 9, 2008


We're sorry.

That's the message from FBI Director Robert Mueller to the executive editors of the New York Times and the Washington Post, after an inspector general discovered that the agency had seized telephone records from four US reporters without a grand jury.

Mueller called Times' editor Bill Keller and Post chief Len Downie Friday, "expressing regret" that agents had not followed "proper procedures. The "lapse" occurred nearly four years ago and involved four staff members of the papers.

"The FBI discontinued use of the emergency letters after privacy advocates and internal watchdogs cited hundreds of cases in which agents intentionally, or out of sloppiness, did not follow up their 'exigent' requests with paperwork that linked the submission to a genuine matter of national security," Washington Post reporter Carrie Johnson wrote in an article Saturday.

The bureau obtained phone records for a Post reporter and a researcher in Indonesia, and Times reporters Raymond Bonner and Jane Perlez, also in the country at the time.

The records were obtained through what is called an exigent circumstances letter, a demand made by the agency in a practice that skirts civil liberties protections that has flourished in the wake of Sept. 11, 2001....(Click here for remainder of article).

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Tape: Top CIA official confesses order to forge Iraq-9/11 letter came on White House stationery

John Byrne
Published: Friday August 8, 2008

In damning transcript, ex-CIA official says Cheney likely ordered letter linking Hussein to 9/11 attacks

A forged letter linking Saddam Hussein to the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks was ordered on White House stationery and probably came from the office of Vice President Dick Cheney, according to a new transcript of a conversation with the Central Intelligence Agency's former Deputy Chief of Clandestine Operations Robert Richer.

The transcript was posted Friday by author Ron Suskind of an interview conducted in June. It comes on the heels of denials by both the White House and Richer of a claim Suskind made in his new book, The Way of The World. The book was leaked to Politico's Mike Allen on Monday, and released Tuesday.

On Tuesday, the White House released a statement on Richer's behalf. In it, Richer declared, "I never received direction from George Tenet or anyone else in my chain of command to fabricate a document ... as outlined in Mr. Suskind's book."

The denial, however, directly contradicts Richer's own remarks in the transcript.

"Now this is from the Vice President's Office is how you remembered it--not from the president?" Suskind asked.

"No, no, no," Richer replied, according to the transcript. "What I remember is George [Tenet] saying, 'we got this from'--basically, from what George said was 'downtown.'"

"Which is the White House?" Suskind asked.

"Yes," Richer said. "But he did not--in my memory--never said president, vice president, or NSC. Okay? But now--he may have hinted--just by the way he said it, it would have--cause almost all that stuff came from one place only: Scooter Libby and the shop around the vice president."...(Click here for remainder of article).

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If James Inhofe Doesn't Hate The Troops, Why Has He Voted Against Them 100% Of The Time?

By Howie Klein

There is no one running for re-election to the U.S. Senate further to the right than Oklahoma's James Inhofe. His roll call votes from 2007-08 show that he is the 3rd from the bottom of the barrel. Worse than him-- though only fractionally-- are Wayne Allard (R-CO), whose polling numbers were so atrocious that he decided to retire, and Jim DeMint (R-SC), who isn't up for re-election. There isn't a single bright spot in Inhofe's voting record. But there are two issues that really confound people in Oklahoma when they hear about them: his utter lack of support for our military personnel and his similar posture towards veterans.

There are few Republicans who have been louder, more shrill and more exploitative when it comes to chanting mantra-like, "support the troops." Apparently, though, in Inhofe's case he was mixing up supporting the fighting men and women with the corporations that make military hardware (and fatten his campaign coffers with "donations"). Defense and aerospace contractors have showered Inhofe with contributions-- $222,350 as of June 30... and rapidly rising-- and he has repaid them handsomely, having never voted against a bill his donors have lobbied him on. But supporting war profiteers like Black Water and Halliburton is far from supporting the troops. Since May of 2003 there have been 14 Senate roll calls affecting the well-being of American's active duty military. At least Inhofe was consistent. He voted against their interests all 14 times. Whether we're talking about exempting active duty military members from harsh bankruptcy rules or we're talking about body armor for the troops, Inhofe has been voting against our troops every single opportunity he's had.

Let me give you an example. On April 21, 2005, conservative pro-war Democrat Evan Bayh introduced an amendment, S.Amdt 520, the purpose of which was to provide funding for armor for Humvees. It was a dramatic vote that found both Obama and McCain on the same side-- voting for the troops. Even arch-conservatives like George Allen (R-VA), Rick Santorum (R-PA), John Thune (R-SD), Richard Lugar (R-IN) and Conrad Burns (R-MT) joined the Democrats to approve this by an overwhelming 61-39 veto-proof majority. Inhofe apparently didn't want to break his perfect record of having opposed the troops on every single vote. And, of course, when Jim Webb (D-VA) and Chuck Hagel (R-NE) have tried to pass amendments to specify minimum periods between deployment of units and members of the Armed Forces deployed in Ira and Afghanistan, Inhofe was always in the bitter and shrinking minority of opponents....(Click here for remainder of article).

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Know-Nothing Politics

By PAUL KRUGMAN
Published: August 7, 2008


So the G.O.P. has found its issue for the 2008 election. For the next three months the party plans to keep chanting: “Drill here! Drill now! Drill here! Drill now! Four legs good, two legs bad!” O.K., I added that last part.

And the debate on energy policy has helped me find the words for something I’ve been thinking about for a while. Republicans, once hailed as the “party of ideas,” have become the party of stupid.

Now, I don’t mean that G.O.P. politicians are, on average, any dumber than their Democratic counterparts. And I certainly don’t mean to question the often frightening smarts of Republican political operatives.

What I mean, instead, is that know-nothingism — the insistence that there are simple, brute-force, instant-gratification answers to every problem, and that there’s something effeminate and weak about anyone who suggests otherwise — has become the core of Republican policy and political strategy. The party’s de facto slogan has become: “Real men don’t think things through.”

In the case of oil, this takes the form of pretending that more drilling would produce fast relief at the gas pump. In fact, earlier this week Republicans in Congress actually claimed credit for the recent fall in oil prices: “The market is responding to the fact that we are here talking,” said Representative John Shadegg....(Click here for remainder of article).

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Rush Limbaugh - Hit of the Week

This past week the Pig-Man has been propagating the insane wacko Christian idea that Barack Obama is the "anti-Christ." We all know that Rush Limbaugh is a big fat idiot (thanks Al Franken). If you have a strong personal constitution, you should listen to one of this idiot's shows. Besides just being really bad radio, it has some of the most uninformed, ignorant, fatuous, and inane callers ever heard on the air. So for being nothing more than a right-wing, corporate shill; Rush Limbaugh is this weeks hit of the week. A brand new shinny penny to anyone who takes the fat bastard down.

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