Loyalty without truth
is a trail to tyranny.
|Wednesday, 1 November 2006 at 4h 22m 22s|
Latest polls on the House races
thanks to Kevin Drum at the washington monthly.
|Wednesday, 1 November 2006 at 4h 11m 25s|
Washington DC Lobbyists
Here is an article in Le Monde, of which the
first 3 paragraphs are translated by me
American Elections: lobbyists, money, and power.
Having become an integral part of American politics, lobbying is never more
active that during elections when their clients want to get elected those
candidates most receptive to their demands ("préoccupations"). The
term "lobbyist" means attempting to influence the authorities. Lobby --
"large entranceway", in english -- evoking illusions of the longtime standing
in the lobby trying to influence and talk to those who can influence events.
The first lobbyists are noted during the 1870 census. They slithered the lobby
of teh Willard Hotel, near both the Treasury and the White House, hoping to rub
shoulders with the Secretary of the Treasury, even with President Grant, who
would drop by to smoke his cigars. Back in 1870, the President command a
couple dozen salarys. Today, there are 900 high-level bureaucrats, often whom
are merely the mouthpieces for lobbyists.
According to the federal statute, lobbying is a "communication" carried out by
an interested party in front of an elected official or a civil servant of the
presidency or the 200 federal agencies (public administrations), bearing on the
formulation or the modification of a law. The law of 1995 (Lobbying Disclosure
Act) defines as lobbyist whoever gains at least 5,000 dollars or spends at
least 20,000 dollars for this activity during six months and has established
more than one contact. Lobbyist must register themselves and regularly publish
their accounts. In March 2005, 21,500 lobbyists were registered with the House
of Representatives. The Center for Public Integrity estimates that 22,000
companies used the services of 3,500 lobbying firms and more than 27,000
lobbyists since 1998.
21,500 hired full time agents trying to influence 435 representatives and their
staffs, or about 22 per Congressman. Some of the staff members are also past
and future lobbyists. Many Congressman cross over to lobbyist after they
retire from government.
As for the history of "K Street," you can find out more by clicking here.
|Wednesday, 1 November 2006 at 2h 19m 45s|
Blacklisting is a form of censorship
Click here for the ABC Corporate memo
to ABC affiliated stations requesting that there are 100 advertisers who are
not to be aired on "Air America Radio" programs. This is called blacklisting.
When the public airwaves become surrogately owned by private corporations,
the advertizers that pay for ads will pull their financial support when they do
not like programming. You don't see them pulling ads from liars like Limbaugh,
Hannity, Savage, O'Reilly, and the Fox propaganda channel -- but here they are,
requesting that ABC stations not get paid for the Air America programs they put
on the air.
This is the anti-democratic nature of corporations, who have a real interest in
screening the information that gets through to the public. We need to
enforce the Anti-trust laws on these media conglomerates. How many stories in
the news media will ever honestly inspect the actions of these corporations?
None that the advertizers don't approve, because they don't care to have their
monopolistic, immoral, illegal corrupt activities thoroughly explained to the
public. This why the news is dominated by celebrity gossip or the civil court-
room drama, just like McDonalds' hamburgers are added with phosphates,
flavor "enhancers", and other fatty leftovers before they are freeze-dried.
And now these corporate advertizers have gotten so accustomed to this practice
over the decades that they send lawyers to regularly staff the production
meetings of the big media companies. Editors and executive producers all get
promotions based upon understandings of how things work, and they pick
journalists and reporters of the same mold. A single phone call from a General
Electric CEO got ABC to pull a story on the failure of Nuclear Energy. Two
Florida Fox News Reporters got fired when they refused to pull a show about MBT
treated cow milk because a Monsanto lawyer wanted the story yanked after many
failed attempts to rewrite the story. MSNBC canned its most popular show, Phil
Donahue in the months just before March 2003 because the CEO's didn't want a
show on the air that might be critical of the President and the war :
popularity be damned.
Recall how pitiful the "press" did on the lies of the Iraq war, and the Ohio
debacle of 2004 that had to wait until John Conyers independently formed a
committee and published a 120 page cursory book on the plethora of suspicious
irregularities that needed investigation. -- (Ken Blackwell meet Katherine
Harris) -- The Press ignored (and continues to ignore) the way Choicepoint DBA
got paid $4 million to provide a sloppy, 90% inaccurate felon list that
Katherine Harris used to purge some 60,000 plus black voters from Florida polls
that were not felons.
This is how the borderline between filtered news and censorship gets very
ambiguous. A big advertiser doesn't like a certain person that is interviewed,
or wants to reframe a video spot by clipping out some of the video. Words are
editted and changed, not always with the same meaning or implication. The
Headline Titles are rarely chosen by the story authors. Even whole details
might be removed or altered at the whims of the editors and executive producers
for reasons that are not altruistic or honest. The last resort is always to
pull the plug, or put the piece in cold storage.
If you've been reading my blog regularly, you've come across my periodic tear
down of some bogus reporting or story development. One thing you must
remember : there are usually 3 or 4 different versions on the news wire for any
big story. A news source is free to pick up the editted version instead of the
original story. A lot of Associated Press (AP) and (now that it is owned by
Rupert Murdoch) United Press International (UPI) stories are just selectively
edited versions of an original story published by some other journalist
somewhere else. Thus, unless you seek out the primary source, you might be
getting the McDonald's burger instead of the real sirloin steak. Newspapers
and local TV news stations are particularly vulnerable to this selective edited
story phenomenom, because unless the reporting is local, they usually depend
upon outside organizations for their information.
A short list of these advertisers will surprise you :
- Bank of America
- Exxon Mobil
- Federal Express
- General Electric
- McDonald's -- Ronald McDonald despises the truth
- Microsoft -- A fatal system crash might otherwise occur
- Office Depot
- Pepsi -- the choice of a brainwashed nation
- The Discovery Channel
- the U.S. Navy -- which loves Rush Limbaugh
Some of these are owned by larger holding companies and are not really
independent financial entities.
|Monday, 30 October 2006 at 0h 21m 45s|
Halliburton's proprietary schemes
From the DC Examiner, the other paper of record in the Nation's
Capital. The story is by ANNE PLUMMER FLAHERTY, an Associated Press reporter.
The special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction found that Houston-based
Halliburton's Kellogg, Brown & Root Services routinely marked all information
it was giving the government as proprietary, whether it actually was or not.
The government promises not to disclose proprietary data so a company's most
valuable information is not divulged to its competitors.
By marking all information proprietary - including such normally releasable
data as labor rates - the company abused federal regulations, the report says.
In effect, Kellogg, Brown & Root turned the regulations "into a mechanism to
prevent the government from releasing normally transparent information, thus
potentially hindering competition and oversight."
. . .
Sen. Byron Dorgan of North Dakota, chairman of the Democratic Policy Committee,
said that in 13 oversight hearings on the war in Iraq the committee found more
than $1 billion in waste, fraud, abuse and what it called "shoddy work" by
"I'm convinced that this is the biggest waste, fraud and abuse in the history
of this country," Dorgan said.
If the Democrats take control of the Senate, he said, they will launch
oversight hearings on war matters ranging from faulty intelligence leading up
to the war to wrongdoing by contractors.
And today's San Francisco Comical Front Page stories (keep in mind the Sunday
paper really comes out Saturday afternoon ... which is another way for
corporate headquarters to skim cuts and suck out more profits) :
- A desperate, critical time in Gaza Strip at close of Ramadan
- Matthew Kalman . . . Life is brutally hard in Gaza
- Dems face a tug-of-war in own tent
- Marc Sandalow, Washington Bureau Chief of bullshit, trying to sew the
seeds of division. Ask yourself this Mr. Sandalow, what's the difference
between how many Democrats are voting Republican this year, and how many
Republicans are voting Democrat? And on the front page!
- Forget the mashed peas -- you've come a long way, baby food
- Tara Duggan . . .The health issues of organic baby food
- THE CITY'S COST OF A LIFE REDEEMED
- Kevin Fagan, Brant Ward . . . The cost of taking care of homelessness and
drug addict health issues
- Those wrinkles aren't from squinting
YouTube, MySpace, computer gaming -- a big chunk of users approach middle age
- Joe Garofoli . . . Wow, like oh my god, sooooo much more important then
|Friday, 27 October 2006 at 17h 32m 13s|
Don't give me credit.
I "borrowed" this
from bartcop, a pretty cool site.
"You ought to just back off, take a look at it, relax,
understand that it's complicated, it's difficult,"
- Rumsfeld at a press conference
27 October 2006.
|Wednesday, 25 October 2006 at 23h 24m 43s|
The Case for Divided Government
William A. Niskanen is chairman of the Cato Institute and
chairman of President Reagan's Council of Economic Advisers.
Here for Mr. Niskanen (Chairman of the Cato Institute) explain why everyone
should vote for a Democrat this year. He calls it "A Case for Divided
The post is brief, maybe 10 paragraphs. He gives three historical points.
Here is how he introduces the article.
For those of you with a partisan bent, I have some bad news:
Our federal government may work better (less badly) when at least one chamber
of Congress is controlled by a party other than the party of the president. The
general reason for this is that each party has the opportunity to block the
most divisive measures proposed by the other party. Other conditions, of
course, also affect political outcomes, but the following types of evidence for
this hypothesis are too important to ignore:
Wow. The chairman of the Cato Institute.
|Wednesday, 25 October 2006 at 1h 12m 16s|
for the groundbreaking book that inspired generations by Jack Herer, The
Emperor Wears No Clothes, or what I prefer to call, The Truth About
This book was about 250 or so pages ... and was the nom de guerre of the
environmental movement in the late 80's and 90's when I was a young man
transitioning between high school, college, and the real world. The fact of
the matter is that many of our current resource and production sources are the
leftover decisions of a time in the past. Our current use of resources and
energy production is not efficient nor wise and not even economical. For me
this book opened up the huge reality of what choices and possibilities there
are. I'll have to detail the current evolution of this thought process at a
The book was a book a fraternity brother actually introduced me to, and was
actually quite well known on Tulane University campus where I went to college.
The campus bookstore actually had copies for sale for a time when I was a
sophomore, or at least I remember seeing the books for sale at the campus
bookstore when I was a Sophomore.
If you need a quick synopsis, Click here for Chapter Two, which gives the historical
I can't believe this is actually online now. Wow.
|Tuesday, 24 October 2006 at 23h 21m 53s|
Prescott Bush and the nazi connection
If you do a google on "Prescott Bush" these are the first 2 links you get (as
of today) :
here for wikipedia.
- Click here for an excellent account by the
New Hampshire Gazette.
Oh but there's more:
- Click here for a story in the London Guardian.
- Click here
for Chapter 2 of George Bush: The Unauthorized Biography --- by
Webster G. Tarpley & Anton Chaitkin
If you want more, do the google on "Prescott Bush" yourself.
|Tuesday, 24 October 2006 at 1h 21m 52s|
So what were those trips paid for by Abramoff
here for the full article
Trips to the Marianas paid for by Abramoff for Republican Ralph Hall (R-TX) who
represents the Texas Fourth Congressional District. The Marianas islands are a
haven for the under age sex slave rings; but they are really all across the Far
East, in Vietnam, the Philipines, Thailand, Burma, and India. But the Marianas
islands are an American Territory. There are secret places.
Well, you see
Rep. Ralph Hall (R-TX) took the floor of Congress in 1996 to question a 15 year-
old girl's claim that she had been the victim of sex trafficking in the
Northern Mariana Islands, a client of Jack Abramoff. "[S]he wanted to do nude
dancing," Hall said. A lobbyist working with Abramoff helped Hall prepare his
statement, and Abramoff had earlier paid for a trip by Hall to the islands.
Asked how the 1996 trip benefited the Texas Fourth Congressional District he
represents, Hall said, “I think it benefits my constituents if you do anything
that benefits the Peace Through Strength people, when you’re going out to bring
information to them to help win the Cold War. That’s a benefit to them, to
their strategic interests.”
So was the trip financed by Abramoff part of an influence peddling, black arts
offering of sorts? I mean, the Soviet Union broke up in 1991, and what does
denying the truth of sex trafficking have to do with the Cold War anyway?
Can you say, PERVERT.
|Monday, 23 October 2006 at 23h 45m 53s|
Revolt and resistance from within
Click here for the US news wire public release.
This is a breaking story. 65 Active Iraq Soldiers are standing down.
Active-Duty Troops Launch Campaign to Press Congress to End U.S. Occupation
65 Members to Send "Appeals for Redress" Under the Military Whistle-blower
10/23/2006 9:58:00 AM
To: Assignment Desk, Daybook Editor
Contact: Trevor Fitzgibbon, 202-246-5303, or Alex Howe, or Laura Gross,
5200, for Fenton Communications
For the first time since the U.S. invasion of Iraq, active- duty members of the
military are asking Members of Congress to end the U.S. occupation of Iraq and
bring American soldiers home.
Sixty-five active-duty members have sent Appeals for Redress to Members of
Congress. Three of these people (including two who served in Iraq) and their
attorney will speak about this on Wednesday, Oct. 25 at 11 a.m. EDT.
Under the Military Whistle-Blower Protection Act (DOD directive 7050.6), active-
duty military, National Guard and Reservists can file and send a protected
communication to a Member of Congress regarding any subject without reprisal.
What: Three active-duty members of the military and their lawyer, a
U.S. Marine Corps JAG, make comments and take questions from the media.
When: Wednesday, Oct. 25, 11 a.m. EDT
GOTO THE NEXT 10 COLUMNS