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Criminals Out Of Our Country

Thursday, May 14, 2009

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Olbermann Interviews Sen. Whitehouse

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Funny, Bill O'Reilly Didn't Think Gay Marriage Was Wrong in 2002

By John Aravosis
AMERICAblog


Bill O'Reilly went off the other night about how gay marriage could lead to goat, duck, dolphin and turtle marriage - oh yeah, and polygamy. It's funny, then, that back in 2002, Bill O'Reilly told my friend Michael Giltz in a bombshell interview for the Advocate that he couldn't care less about the issue of gay marriage. At first, O'Reilly told Michael that he was opposed to gay marriage. Then when pushed by the reponer, O'Reilly finally conceded:
"Look, I couldn't care less, to tell you the truth.... You want to get married? Knock yourself out. Go to Vegas. Have a good time. If you can get that changed, I'm not going to jump up and down and say I think it's wrong, because I don't."
This was the same interview in which O'Reilly referred to anti-gay activists as "fanatics" and "holy rollers" who were a bit "ridiculous." O'Reilly went on to express his support for laws protecting gays in the workplace and more. Shortly after that, O'Reilly ripped a religious right representative, on camera....(Click for remainder.)

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Dick Cheney Defends His Record

By David Horsey
The Seattle Post-Intelligencer



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Bush Pentagon and Halliburton Couldn't Even Give Our Troops Enough Safe Water to Drink

By Metavirus
Library Grape

Ok, this stuff is really just getting too outrageous to put into words. A shocking new report reveals that our troops have been forced to steal water because defense contractors such as Halliburton have either not provided enough water to meet their basic needs or provided them with water loaded with contaminants.
CBS affiliate KHOU-TV in Houston has discovered that some soldiers were forced to ration water, perhaps as little as 2-3 liters per day, because there was never enough.

It is less than the one gallon minimum a day that an Army manual says is necessary just to survive in a desert environment. In fact, an Army training document on preventing heat casualties states that water losses in the desert can reach 15 liters (about four gallons) a day per soldier.

Army Staff Sgt. Dustin Robey told KHOU correspondent Jeremy Rogalski that soldiers would throw up or pass out from dehydration.

Chronic dehydration can lead to such problems as kidney stones, urinary infection, rectal afflictions and skin problems, and can have long-term health problems, including kidney injury.

Robey said in 2003 his company would run out of water on missions, forcing them to improvise, like drinking water from whatever taps they found.

Unfortunately, the often-untreated Iraqi water can cause intestinal illnesses. Robey said 50 to 60 members of his company got dysentery.

Desperate, Robey said he and his commander were reduced to stealing water from supplies stored at Baghdad International Airport.
I am really finding it hard to fully comprehend how criminally irresponsible nearly everyone attached to the Bush administration turned out to be.

They couldn't even give our troops enough goddamn WATER?

Is there anything these people didn't fuck up?...(Click for remainder.)

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Nope

By John Sherffius
Boulder Daily Camera



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O'Reilly's, Pinhead #1, First Amendment Rights List: Ms. Cali - Yes! Janeane Garofalo - No!

By Julie
News Hounds


On the May 11, 2009 O'Reilly Factor, Bill O'Reilly said, “My newspaper column this week is about the incredibly hypocritical ACLU not sticking up for Miss California's freedom of speech . . . .” (See my recent post here) Remember that, folks: O'Reilly is all about everybody's First Amendment rights. With video.

But what happened to the First Amendment? On last night's O'Reilly Factor (5/12), O'Reilly triumphantly declared, in his Pinheads and Patriots segment, “Janeane Garofalo – ho ho, we got ya in Boston.” With video.

O'Reilly continued by saying, “On the Pinhead front, no way Janeane Garofalo's gonna get a Patriot banner, at least not from us. Over the weekend she did a comedy gig in Boston . . . Factor producer Griff Jenkins caught up with Ms. Garofalo.”

Imagine if O'Reilly were really Fair and Balanced. Imagine the questions he or his producer Jenkins either should NOT have been asking Garofalo or SHOULD have been asking Miss California all along – in pursuit of First Amendment rights for all. Such as . . .

Jenkins asked Garofalo, “What do you think of calling just honest protesters racist?” Why didn't he ask Miss California, "What do you think of denying the right of marriage to gay people who are simply honest and loving couples?"

Garofalo responded, “Because they're not just honest protesters, they were indeed motivated a lot by racism. You saw some of those signs, did you not? And if they are upset about fiscal imprudence, where were they for the last eight years?”

Jenkins responded to Garofalo, “But you don't know they're racist.” Funny how he never said, "But Miss California, you don't know that gay people aren't just like you and want the same kind of marriage you may want in your homey little topless, family values way."

“What about that one sign that says, 'What you talking about, Willis,' what do you think about that sign?” Garofalo asked Jenkins.

Jenkins ignored her question, saying, “I'm just asking you . . . What do you say to the people who'd say, all right, you owe those people an apology?” (How about, "So, Miss California, what do you say to the gay people who say, all right, you owe us an apology?")

Garofalo replied, “I don't so they're gonna have to wait a long time."...(Click for remainder.)

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Torture and the Religious Right

By Steve Benen
Washington Monthly


We haven't heard too much from the religious right on the debate over Bush's torture policies, which is something of a surprise since the movement is trying to reassert its relevance in Republican politics. How do the self-appointed arbiters of morality view torture?

Well, it's a mixed bag. The Southern Baptist Convention's Richard Land, to his credit, is on the side of angels on this issue. Christianity Today reported, "Land explained that while he supports capital punishment for convicted killers, he denounces torture in all cases because he's compelled to honor the image of God as reflected in all human beings." Land added that he rejects the notion that the ends justify the means, adding, "[T]hat is a very slippery slope that leads to dark and dangerous places."

And on the flip-side, there's Gary Bauer.
Gary Bauer, a former Republican presidential candidate affiliated with several Christian right groups over the years, said the discussion should not come down to "Would Jesus torture?"

"There are a lot of things Jesus wouldn't do because he's the son of God," he said. "I can't imagine Jesus being a Marine or a policeman or a bank president, for that matter. The more appropriate question is, 'What is a follower of Jesus permitted to do?'"

Bauer said the answer is "it depends" -- but the moral equation changes when the suspect is not a soldier captured on a battlefield but a terrorist who may have knowledge of an impending attack. He said he does not consider water-boarding -- a form of interrogation that simulates drowning -- to be torture.

"I think if we believe the person we have can give us information to stop thousands of Americans from being killed, it would be morally suspect to not use harsh tactics to get that information," Bauer said.
Got that? It would be morally suspect not to think the ends justify the means, according to this prominent Christian conservative leader.

Something to keep in mind the next time the religious right is lecturing the rest of us about our moral depravity....(Click for original.)

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Dan Savage "President Gets 'F' On Gay Rights Issues"

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Cantor's Fine Line

By Roll Call

As believers in a strong two-party system, we support Republican efforts to “rebrand,” “reach out” to the public and develop new ideas.

But political work, such as that being done by the National Council for a New America created by House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.), should be done with political money and not with resources paid for by taxpayers.

As Roll Call reported on Monday, Cantor staff and GOP ethics attorney Jan Baran have walked a very fine line to comply with House rules in funding, publicizing and staffing the new organization.

But we think that the whole endeavor ought to be paid for out of political contributions.

The NCNA’s original launch letter carefully — though disingenuously — declared “this is not a Republican-only forum.”

And Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said in one conference call that “this is a conversation with America. This is not a rebranding effort.”

But the NCNA clearly is not bipartisan and everything about it is designed to advance the Republican Party.

McCain said the group was based on the National Policy Forum established by Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour when he was chairman of the Republican National Committee. Barbour now is one of the group’s “national panel of experts.”...(Click for remainder.)

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Obama Turns Back on New Deal

By Matthew Rothschild
The Progressive


Soon after getting into the White House, Barack Obama said bemusedly that some of his opponents were still fighting the New Deal.

But now it looks like Obama himself may chip away at one of the cornerstones of the New Deal: and that is Social Security.

After announcing that the recession has shrunk the payroll taxes that fund Social Security, Obama’s pathetic Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner signaled that cuts in the program may be in the offing.

“The President explicitly rejects the notion that Social Security is untouchable politically,” Geithner said.

Obama’s OMB director, Peter Orzag, came out with a paper several years ago calling for reductions in benefits for all recipients who are currently 55 or under. The cuts would be from 2 percent to 9 percent.

Obama himself uses the derisive term “entitlement” for this benefit, as if the elderly and the disabled are acting like entitled little brats to expect to have any government help.

Another outrageous thing about this targeting of Social Security is that it’s so unnecessary.

Even with this week’s figures, Social Security would be able to pay every dime of benefits to every recipient through the year 2037. And if we lifted the ceiling on Social Security payroll taxes, which is now just slightly more than $100,000, then Social Security would be solvent a lot longer....(Click for remainder.)

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Ex-FBI Agent Criticizes Torture Tactics

By James Vicini
Reuters


WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Waterboarding and other harsh interrogation methods used during the Bush administration on terrorism suspects produced unreliable evidence and were ineffective, a former FBI agent told Congress on Wednesday.

Ali Soufan made the charge before a Senate Judiciary panel in the first congressional hearing since the release last month of Justice Department memos that authorized tactics such as waterboarding, sleep and food deprivation and forced nudity.

"These techniques ... are ineffective, slow and unreliable and as a result harmful to our efforts to defeat al Qaeda," said Soufan, who noted that he obtained valuable intelligence from al Qaeda suspects without using harsh methods.

He said he objected to the practices of CIA interrogators.

"I could not stand by quietly while our country's safety was endangered and our moral standing damaged," he said.

The hearing occurred amid increasing calls by human rights groups for more investigation and perhaps even criminal prosecutions of Bush administration officials for the techniques denounced by critics as illegal torture.

Soufan also interrogated prisoners at Guantanamo and was a key prosecution witness last year during the only two trials completed in the special tribunals at the U.S. Navy base in Cuba. His testimony helped convict Osama bin Laden's driver, Salim Hamdan, and al Qaeda videographer Ali Hamza al Bahlul....(Click for remainder.)



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DeGette Takes Aim at Natural Gas Industry to Protect Groundwater Supplies

By David O. Williams
The Colorado Independent


U.S. Rep. Diana DeGette is leading the charge to increase federal oversight of the nation’s natural gas industry, reintroducing a bill that specifically targets a process called hydraulic fracturing.

“Fracking,” as it’s known in industry circles, pumps a mixture of water and sand into a well using extremely high pressure in order to force gas to the surface. Some environmental groups say the process can lead to groundwater contamination.

DeGette, a Denver Democrat who unsuccessfully championed the cause on Capitol Hill last year, is poised to reintroduce legislation that would remove an exemption for hydraulic fracturing from the Safe Drinking Water Act that was granted in the 2005 Energy Policy Act.

“As this is an important issue for Congresswoman DeGette, she is expecting to introduce the bill soon,” DeGette spokesman Kristofer Eisenla said. “We are currently just finalizing language and talking to the chairman about the direction of the legislation,” he said, referring to U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman, the California Democrat who control’s the powerful Energy and Commerce Committee’s gavel. “While we are planning to introduce it, no decisions have been made yet on how it will move,” Eisenla said.

The bill could be folded into Waxman’s American Clean Energy and Security Act, which is currently being bandied about in committee and includes such lofty goals as a national renewable energy standard and a carbon cap. DeGette also sits on the Energy and Commerce Committee.

The exemption was granted in 2005 because of a controversy stemming from an Alabama case in which it was alleged that fracking was directly responsible for groundwater contamination. The Environmental Protection Agency studied the case and did not conclude there was a direct correlation between the process and methane found in drinking water....(Click for remainder.)


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Keith Olbermann Interviews Sen. Whitehouse on Torture Hearing

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Tea Party Leader/Insane Clown Also Major Tax Fraud

By Teablogging.net

Well no wonder he doesn’t like taxes very much. According to documents obtained by Teablogging by running a goddamned simple Nexis search on the internets, national Tea Party organizer, Top Conservatives on Twitter cofounder and TCOTReport.com publisher Michael P. Leahy has, over the past 16 years, amassed nearly $150,000 in state and federal tax liens, small claims court judgments and civil suits.

It’s an open secret among teabaggers and elsewhere that Leahy is a delusional, profiteering creep and, potentially, a member of some alien race of Lizard People here to feed on the human race, for freedom. You might have heard of Leahy during the Great TCOT Civil War hilarious catfight of 2009, when he basically threw a bitch fit on the internet because TCOT cofounder and reasonable adult Rob Neppell wouldn’t let him be the supreme boss of everything which was, like, TOTALLY UNFAIR. You will find that this is something of a recurring theme with Leahy.

So anyway, megalomaniac? Check. Self-defeating hack? Check. Lizard Person? Definitely check. And now, yes, apparently massive tax fraud? Check and check.

Seriously, does Leahy have naked pictures of other teaparty leaders that they continue to associate with this no-talent fartsack? Actually, no, please don’t answer that....(Click for remainder.)

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A Cavalcade of Haters

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