Jan 31, 2006

That Simon Cowell Is A Hoot...

You gotta love that American Idol!

Just finished soaking my feet (sore from a new pair of wing tips) and now straight to bed - busy day tomorrow with the Grand Jury convening and all. Goodnight. :)

Reach Out And Eavesdrop on Someone...

AT&T sued over NSA spy program

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, which filed the suit, says AT&T's alleged cooperation violates free speech and privacy rights found in the U.S. Constitution and also contravenes federal wiretapping law, which prohibits electronic surveillance "except as authorized by statute."

If I used AT&T I could call and cancel their poor, overpriced and questionable service.

And Sam...

I heard it through the grapevine...congrats on the new j-o-b, Heghlu'meH QaQ jajvam!

Murder, Inc. Part Deux...

or Lobbyists with Dirty Faces?
Witness for the Prosecution - Abramoff's plea agreement could land him in the middle of a murder trial or Hollywood blockbuster!
I can see the reviews now..."One of the greatest films of George Clooney's film career playing Jack Abramoff who is a career criminal, who, immediately after getting out of the clink, meets up with Brad Pitt his former partner in crime (Tom DeLay!), who of course is a priest now and loathes the life Jack leads. Abramoff is also preoccupied with a bunch of no-good kids in the Young Republicans who of course idolize him.
Seeing this, DeLay thinks Abramoff should lead the kids to good. But Jack is too busy getting even with his old business cronies (Gale Norton, Chief Choctaw, Bob Ney and Karl Rove!). This film is a lot fun, most especially watching Clooney and Pitt on the screen together again. For those rather uninitiated with the career of Clooney (eg, just seen The Facts of Life and the Ocean's Eleven movies), this film may come as a revelation to you, as he plays a cretinous heel here. And Pitt? Ahhh, what's not to like? He's flawless here, (well, except his curious hair style). As for the Young Republicans, I liked them here, rather interesting that Kid Rock and Britney Spears almost are in the background here with small cameos, with their leadership of the group not yet realized."- Generic DOJ Movie Critic


Regrets, He's Had A Few...

I did it my way.
Suggest a caption for Anthony Charles Lynton Blair aka "Landslide" - a nickname given by another Head of State?

Liar Liar...

pants on fire. Alberto mi amigo, say it isn't so, so help me God?

Wa Po - Sen. Russell Feingold (D-Wis.) charged yesterday that Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales misled the Senate during his confirmation hearing a year ago when he appeared to try to avoid answering a question about whether the president could authorize warrantless wiretapping of U.S. citizens.

In a letter to the attorney general yesterday, Feingold demanded to know why Gonzales dismissed the senator's question about warrantless eavesdropping as a "hypothetical situation" during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in January 2005. At the hearing, Feingold asked Gonzales where the president's authority ends and whether Gonzales believed the president could, for example, act in contravention of existing criminal laws and spy on U.S. citizens without a warrant. <more>

Everyone in the Administration who has been truthful please step forward, not so fast Mr. Attorney General, Mr. President, Karl, Dick, Condi, Rummy, Scooter...

UPDATE: This just in from Americablog...

AOL Members Are Un-American..!

and support Terrorists? Bush Rove Maureen Dowd Google Abramoff Wonkette Alito Enron
I think the DOJ might subpoena AOL's records to learn which "American's" graded President Bush's overall performance with an F!
How would you vote?

Jan 30, 2006

Place Your Bets...

The odds that President Bush brings up the following during tomorrow's State of the Union address:

Karl Rove

Tom DeLay
100,000 -1

Duke Cunningham

Teri Schiavo

Roe vs. Wade

Jack Abramoff

Ariana Huffington

Jenna Bush

Osama Bin Laden

Yours truly...PJF

Exxon's Record Profits


Cindy Sheehan

Jack Murtha

"So and so hero citizen in the audience tonight..."

Does a Classic Bush Bleep and Blooper

Political Interests..?

above the nation's interest? Say it aint' so, Mr. President!

Floor Remarks by Senator Reid, as prepared for delivery Monday, January 30, 2006 to premept the SOTU address likening this Administration's and the Congressional scandals to Watergate

Tomorrow night, President Bush will come to the Capitol and deliver his fifth State of the Union Address. It is an important moment for President Bush and America. In fact, this may be the most difficult speech the President will ever give.

The president comes to the Capitol in the midst of the greatest culture of corruption since Watergate. Republican corruption has destroyed the public’s trust in our government and taken a great toll on the state of our union.

In his speech, it will be up to President Bush to show he is committed to restoring the bonds of trust and repairing the damage done by Republican corruption.

Americans know our country can do better than today, and after the year we just had – a year of Katrina, unending violence in Iraq, Terri Schiavo, Social Security Privatization, Harriet Meirs, the Medicare mess – Americans will no longer be willing to blindly accept the President’s promises and give him the benefit of the doubt.

Americans will be looking past the President’s rhetoric tomorrow night and taking a hard look at the results he intends to deliver.

The President’s State of the Union speech is a credibility test.

Will he acknowledge the real state of our union and offer to take our country down a path that unites us and makes us stronger?

Or will he give us more of the same empty promises and partisanship that have weakened our country and divided Americans for the last five years?

If he takes the first approach, together, we can build a stronger America.

If he gives us more of the same, we’ll know he intends to spend 2006 putting his political fortunes ahead of America’s future.

America needs a fresh start, and I hope President Bush realizes that Tuesday night. There is so much more at stake in this speech than the President’s poll numbers.

Empty promises will no longer cut it.

We need a credible roadmap for our future. And we need the President to tell us how together, we can achieve the better America that we all envision.

Our first signal that the president intends to move our country forward will come in his assessment of the state of our union.

It’s not credible for the President to suggest the state of our union is as strong as it should be.

The fact is, America can do better. From health care to national security, Republican corruption has taken its toll on our country, and we can see it in the state of our union.

We are less safe in the world than we were four and half years ago, because the White House has decided protecting its political power is more important than protecting the American people.

We are the wealthiest nation on earth, but not the healthiest, because Republicans in Congress have decided to take care of Big Drug Companies and HMOs instead of the 46 million uninsured.

We have a national debt climbing past 8 trillion dollars, because the president squandered the strongest economy of our lifetime with reckless spending and irresponsible tax breaks for special interests and multi-millionaires.

We have an addiction to foreign oil that has climbed steadily and doubled the price of heat and gas since late 2001, because the Vice President let Big Oil companies write our energy policy.

And we have too many middle-class families living on a financial cliff, because Republican economic policies place the needs of the wealthy and well-connected ahead of working Americans.

If President Bush is committed to making America stronger, he will acknowledge these facts. He will admit the steep price Americans have paid for Republican corruption, and he will proceed to tell us how he will make our country stronger.

Our second clue that President Bush is committed to moving America forward will come in his remarks about national security.

Tomorrow night, it’s not credible for the President to tell us that he has done all he can to keep America safe for the last five years and that he should be allowed to proceed down the same path unchecked.

The truth is exactly the opposite. For all his tough talk, President Bush’s policies have made America less safe.

His failed record speaks for itself.

Osama bin Laden – the man who attacked us on 9/11 - remains on the loose, because – in his rush to invade Iraq - the President took his eye of the ball when we had bin Laden cornered in Afghanistan. As a result, Bin Laden escaped and continues to threaten us today.

Then, there’s the President’s Axis of Evil.

Four years ago, the President declared Iraq, Iran, and North Korea an “axis of evil,” whose nuclear threats posed a risk to the American people. He was right. But, instead of pursuing the correct policies to make us safe, he invaded Iraq. Now, two members of the axis of evil – North Korea and Iran – are more dangerous, and – after spending billions of dollars and losing 2300 American lives – we’ve found out the third – Iraq – didn’t pose a nuclear threat.

Then, there’s what this president has done to our military.

Not only has the president failed to properly equip our troops for battle, but he’s also stretched the force entirely too thin.

Mr. President, the national security failures go on and on.

The President’s poor planning and refusal to change course in Iraq has made progress in 2006 harder to achieve…

As Katrina made clear, he failed to prepare our homeland for a possible attack following 9/11.

And the President has made it more difficult to spread democracy around the world, because he’s been undermining it at home - - - through his executive power grabs and his “trust me its legal” approach to the NSA domestic eavesdropping program.

America can do better.

Tomorrow night, we need the President to rally the country around our most important goal – protecting our people and way of life.

Democrats have always been willing to work with President Bush to make America more secure.

Tuesday, it’s not enough for the President to display the swagger of the Campaigner in Chief. We need to see honesty and candor from the Commander in Chief.

Our third signal that President Bush understands what it will take to make the state of our union strong will come when he talks about health care.

Because of the President’s inaction on health care for the last five years, America faces a health care crisis of staggering proportions. We have 46 million Americans uninsured. The cost of health care premiums has almost doubled since 2001. Companies like Ford and GM are finding it difficult to compete in the world because they’re crippled by skyrocketing health care costs.

With a record like that, it’s not credible for the President to claim he has a vision to make health care affordable. He needs to present us new ideas that will move America forward, not trot out the same tired, old policies that serve special interests and not the American people.

From press reports, I fear we will only hear tired, old ideas, like the President’s plan for Health Savings Accounts.

Health Savings Accounts - - that’s classic Bush doublespeak, and it’s not a credible solution to the health care crisis. Here’s all you need to know about HSAs – you’ll pay more and get less.

This plan is another giveaway to the same people the president has favored over hard working Americans for the last five years.

In fact, remember Social Security privatization? HSAs are a lot like that. They do nothing to solve the real problem. They make the situation worse for the American people. And they create a financial windfall for the President’s friends.

We don’t need to hear the President to offer more of the same on health care.

What we need is a new direction - one that puts families first.

Democrats believe that addressing the health care crisis is not just a moral imperative, but it’s also vital to our economic security and leadership in the world. Every day we go without reform is another day America takes a step backward from its position as a global leader. For our families, we must make health care affordable and accessible. For our businesses, we must remove the burden of skyrocketing costs that is holding our businesses, our economy and our workers back in the global marketplace.

Our fourth clue that President Bush knows what America needs will come in his remarks about the economy.

After all we’ve seen in the last five years, it will not be credible for the President to claim that our economy is growing… that his “plan” to reduce “his” deficits is working… and that Congress is to blame for overspending and bad decision making.

The truth is, the fiscal nightmare we see today belongs to President Bush and President Bush alone.

Here’s another doublespeak we’re likely to hear tomorrow night – the Bush Competitive Agenda.

This president can talk all he wants about making America competitive, but for five years, he’s done nothing to keep America in the game.

From what we’ve read in the press, this plan sounds like more empty rhetoric from a president that has spent five years slashing the funding we need to stay on the cutting edge.

President Bush has shut the doors of college to thousands of students by supporting the largest student aid cut in history.

He’s allowed our country to fall further behind our trading partners.

And he’s lavished billion on Big Oil, instead of investing in American technology and know-how that would make us energy independent.

We need to hear new economic ideas.

The President needs to tell us how he’s going to stop increasing the debt and start paying it down, so our children and grandchildren don’t pay the price for his reckless fiscal record.

We need to hear how he’s going to help middle-class families deal with rising energy prices.

And we need him to speak honestly about tax relief.

Here’s the truth about the Bush tax breaks. Multi-millionaires stand to receive over 100,000 dollars, while the average working family will receive less than 1,000 dollars.

The President’s priorities are upside down. It’s time for him to join Democrats and bring fairness to our tax code.

Democrats are ready to work with President Bush, but he needs to commit to policies that put the needs of hardworking Americans first.

Our final signal that President Bush is committed to making America stronger will come on the issue of reform.

Because of connections to the culture of corruption and stonewalling about Jack Abramoff, it is not credible for President Bush to claim the moral high ground on values and honest government.

President Bush needs to set an example if he’s going to lead our country forward. He needs to come clean about his connections to corruption and join Democrats in uniting behind the Honest Leadership and Open Government Act, introduced in the Senate two weeks ago.

Too many Republicans have shown in recent days that they are more interested in throwing mud and obscuring the facts, than cleaning up Washington. If our country is going to make progress in 2006, President Bush needs to set them straight.

Democrats have a plan to reform Washington. We’re trying to bring it to the Senate Floor for an up-or-down vote. Unfortunately, the Republican Majority is blocking our effort.

If President Bush is going to pass the credibility test tomorrow night, he needs to direct the Republican leadership of the House and the Senate to make real, meaningful reform the first item of business next week.

It’s so important that President Bush lead by example. Remember, it’s Republicans – not Democrats – who have abandoned values like community and opportunity, and embraced vices like greed and arrogance instead.

It’s Republicans who control the White House, where men are willing to break the law and ignore America’s best interest so they can protect their political power.

It’s Republicans on K-Street who have conspired with lawmakers to put the well-connected first.

And it’s Republicans who control the Congress, which has sold its soul to special interests and the Republican right-wing base, a base that has its sights set on stacking our courts with extremist judges.

Tomorrow night, the president will undoubtedly praise the confirmation of Judge Samuel Alito.

Let me be clear: Democrats stand united against Judge Alito because he too protects special interests over America’s interest and has failed to demonstrate that he will be a check on presidential power.

Mr. President, the President faces a tremendous test tomorrow night.

It’s up to him to prove to the American people that he intends to denounce the culture of corruption and change direction in 2006.

Democrats are ready to work with President Bush in order move our country forward, because we believe that together, America can do better.

Tomorrow night, I hope President Bush will join us in putting progress ahead of politics, so we can have a state of the union as honest and strong as the American people.

Wow, you read the whole speech? Bully


rocks. I love freedom of information and transparency in our government.

CREW Sues DHS Over Continuing Katrina Cover-Up; Bush Administration Fails to Provide Docs on Inadequate Preparedness and Response to Disaster <more>

Condi Smiles...

when she wins at Klingon Scrabble. Trust me, she will get a kick out of this once I show it to her.

On the other hand, John Roberts is not like "Wild Sam" Alito and would find the sex scene with his wife distasteful. Loosen up, Johnny boy.

Do you think NIKE will let "radicals" customize shoes with words like "Impeach______", "Convict______, or Allah Hu Akbar?"

I found these humorous gems via Ariana Huffington's contest.

Jan 29, 2006

Brass Ones X 2...

Newsweek - Feb. 6, 2006 issue - James Comey resigned as deputy attorney general in the summer of 2005. The press and public hardly noticed. Comey's farewell speech, delivered in the Great Hall of the Justice Department, contained all the predictable, if heartfelt, appreciations. But mixed in among the platitudes was an unusual passage. Comey thanked "people who came to my office, or my home, or called my cell phone late at night, to quietly tell me when I was about to make a mistake; they were the people committed to getting it right—and to doing the right thing—whatever the price. These people," said Comey, "know who they are. Some of them did pay a price for their commitment to right, but they wouldn't have it any other way."

One of those people, NEWSWEEK reports, was former assistant attorney general Jack Goldsmith.

Just Say No To AIDS...

The Man In The Black Hat...

anti-curious, George?

Abramoff Was Tipped Off Newly filed court papers say Bush administration official told lobbyist of upcoming suspension.
Republicans urge Bush to release records on Abramoff

The 2006 State of the Union - a Preview..?

Jan 28, 2006

Glory Road...

is a great movie and highly recommended by this blogger - much better than Chronicles of Narnia, AND Hoodwinked put together!

Jan 27, 2006


open thread. Have a happy weekend and be good to your neighbors. :)

Jan 25, 2006

Public Integrity..?

Abramoff Prosecutor Among Bush Nominees

AP- President Bush on Wednesday nominated one of the Justice Department's lead prosecutors in the Jack Abramoff corruption probe to a U.S. District Court seat.

Noel Hillman, chief of the department's public integrity section, was nominated for the federal judgeship in New Jersey, where he served in the U.S. Attorney's office under Michael Chertoff, now secretary of Homeland Security.

The White House was poised to nominate Hillman last summer, after New Jersey's two Democratic senators took the opportunity to weigh in on Hillman and other nominees in exchange for lifting their objections to another candidate Bush had nominated in 2003.

White House spokeswoman Erin Healy said the president makes all his nominations in a timely manner and was ready to move forward with these, adding that Bush was pleased to work with Sen. Frank Lautenberg (news, bio, voting record) and former Sen. Jon Corzine (news, bio, voting record), now governor of New Jersey.

Hillman will step down as chief of the public integrity unit next week, but remain in the Justice Department's criminal division until he is confirmed, a department official said. Andrew Lourie, a career prosecutor in Miami, will lead the public corruption-fighting office on a temporary basis, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to discuss personnel matters.

Lourie performed the same role until Hillman took over early in 2003.

During a news conference earlier this month following Abramoff's guilty plea on corruption-related charges, Assistant Attorney General Alice Fisher said Hillman played an important role in providing leadership in the investigation.

Hillman came to Washington in 2001. Before that, he was an assistant U.S. attorney in New Jersey from 1992 to 2001, coming in while Chertoff was the U.S. attorney.

Last summer, Corzine and Lautenberg signed off on the nominations of Hillman and two others nominated to judgeships in New Jersey on Wednesday. They gave the OK as part of an agreement to lift their objections to Bush's nomination of Republican activist Peter Sheridan to the federal bench.

...On 10-27 I posted and open letter to POTUS regarding SCOTUS..I remain committed to see my tasks and duties at hand to completion, regardless of the temptations/offers they may throw at me.

Jan 24, 2006

Cut Bait..?

or fish.

Impeachment hearings: The White House prepares for the worst

The Bush administration is bracing for impeachment hearings in Congress.

"A coalition in Congress is being formed to support impeachment," an administration source said.

Sources said a prelude to the impeachment process could begin with hearings by the Senate Judiciary Committee in February. They said the hearings would focus on the secret electronic surveillance program and whether Mr. Bush violated the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

Administration sources said the charges are expected to include false reports to Congress as well as Mr. Bush's authorization of the National Security Agency to engage in electronic surveillance inside the United States without a court warrant. This included the monitoring of overseas telephone calls and e-mail traffic to and from people living in the United States without requisite permission from a secret court.

Sources said the probe to determine whether the president violated the law will include Republicans, but that they may not be aware they could be helping to lay the groundwork for a Democratic impeachment campaign against Mr. Bush.

"Our arithmetic shows that a majority of the committee could vote against the president," the source said. "If we work hard, there could be a tie."

The law limits the government surveillance to no more than 72 hours without a court warrant. The president, citing his constitutional war powers, has pledged to continue wiretaps without a warrant.

The hearings would be accompanied by several lawsuits against the administration connected to the surveillance program. At the same time, the Electronic Privacy Information Center has filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit that demands information about the NSA spying.

Sen. Arlen Specter, Senate Judiciary Committee chairman and Pennsylvania Republican, has acknowledged that the hearings could conclude with a vote of whether Mr. Bush violated the law. Mr. Specter, a critic of the administration’s surveillance program, stressed that, although he would not seek it, impeachment is a possible outcome.

"Impeachment is a remedy," Mr. Specter said on Jan. 15. "After impeachment, you could have a criminal prosecution. But the principal remedy under our society is to pay a political price."

Mr. Specter and other senior members of the committee have been told by legal constitutional experts that Mr. Bush did not have the authority to authorize unlimited secret electronic surveillance. Another leading Republican who has rejected the administration's argument is Sen. Sam Brownback of Kansas.

On Jan. 16, former Vice President Al Gore set the tone for impeachment hearings against Mr. Bush by accusing the president of lying to the American people. Mr. Gore, who lost the 2000 election to Mr. Bush, accused the president of "indifference" to the Constitution and urged a serious congressional investigation. He said the administration decided to break the law after Congress refused to change the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

"A president who breaks the law is a threat to the very structure of our government," Mr. Gore said.

"I call upon members of Congress in both parties to uphold your oath of office and defend the Constitution,” he said. “Stop going along to get along. Start acting like the independent and co-equal branch of American government that you are supposed to be under the constitution of our country."

Impeachment proponents in Congress have been bolstered by a memorandum by the Congressional Research Service on Jan. 6. CRS, which is the research arm of Congress, asserted in a report by national security specialist Alfred Cumming that the amended 1947 law requires the president to keep all members of the House and Senate intelligence committees "fully and currently informed" of a domestic surveillance effort. It was the second CRS report in less than a month that questioned the administration's domestic surveillance program.

The latest CRS report said Mr. Bush should have briefed the intelligence committees in the House and Senate. The report said covert programs must be reported to House and Senate leaders as well as the chairs of the intelligence panels, termed the "Gang of Eight."

Administration sources said Mr. Bush would wage a vigorous defense of electronic surveillance and other controversial measures enacted after 9/11. They said the president would begin with pressure on Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Mr. Bush would then point to security measures taken by the former administration of President Bill Clinton.

"The argument is that the American people will never forgive any public official who knowingly hurts national security," an administration source said. "We will tell the American people that while we have done everything we can to protect them, our policies are being endangered by a hypocritical Congress."


Jan 22, 2006



Jan 21, 2006

Michael Moore Throws A Strike...

playing hardball with Chris Matthews...
Quite funny!

Molding Our Youth...

Bush and Abramoff—Breaking Bread, Saying Cheese, Littering Twins

White House press secretary Scott McClellan admits that the White House has been on a search mission for any photos showing President Bush with toxic lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who is cooperating with the Justice Department on its investigation of a wide-ranging lobbying scandal.

At a press conference, McClellan said if there were pictures, which officials hadn’t found, they might have been taken at a Christmas-party line, where the President poses with hundreds of people. “The President does not know him, nor does the President recall ever meeting him,” McClellan said.

The comment about searching raised images in the press room of a “White House plumbers” operation looking for incriminating photos.

If the White House can’t find the photos, prosecutors already know where to look. The Washingtonian has seen five photos of the President with Abramoff or his family. One photo shows the President and Abramoff shaking hands at a meeting in the Old Executive Office Building, where a bearded-Abramoff introduced Bush to several of the lobbyist’s native-American clients.

Abramoff was named a “pioneer” in the Bush presidential campaign, collecting more than $100,000, in $2,000 maximum increments, for his campaign in 2004. Bush has returned $6,000 of Abramoff’s contributions, the part that would represent the legal limit for Abramoff; his wife, Pam; and a client.

Sources say the photographs are being kept safe. Abramoff would tell prosecutors, if asked, that not only did he know the President, but the President knew the names of Abramoff’s children and asked about them during their meetings. At one such photo session, Bush discussed the fact that both he and Abramoff were fathers of twins.

Abramoff is my favorite kind of criminal...a cooperative one! ;)

Rogue Administration...

might be a good title for the voluminous book I have been penning...any suggestions?

Jan 20, 2006


Good evening, ladies and germs...

Lobbyist's Dad Attacks Clooney Over Globes Joke

Reuters - George Clooney has come under fire from disgraced U.S. lobbyist Jack Abramoff's family, after poking fun at him in his Golden Globes Best Supporting Actor acceptance speech on Monday.

The movie star joked, "Who would name their kid 'Jack' with 'off' at the end? No wonder the guy's screwed up," which infuriated Abramoff's father, who was watching the awards show at home.

Frank Abramoff has since fired off a letter to Clooney via newspaper the Palm Springs Desert Sun, accusing the actor of being "glib and ridiculous."

Abramoff's father says, "Your glib and ridiculous attack on my son, Jack, coupled with your obscene query as to the choice his mother and I made in naming him brought shame and dishonor on you and your profession.

"What drove you to this lapse in lucidity, I can never know, but you need to know that your words were deeply hurtful to many innocent and decent people.

"Are you the heir to the dignity and greatness of Hollywood's past, or, more likely, a portent to a depressing and horrific future?"

Washington, D.C. lobbyist Abramoff has been convicted of bribery and conspiracy after admitting he bribed public officials and defrauded Native American clients.

My IRA...

is getting pounded today. I love Google and support their right to privacy and listen to my iPod daily...will that help stop these stocks from sliding any further today?

Jan 19, 2006

Justice Is Blind...

and deaf and dumb in this case.

Justice Department to declare warrantless wiretaps legal in 40 page brief...developing

Me thinks these are the same folks who believe torture is legal as well.

Yes Or No..?

Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely

An observation that a person’s sense of morality lessens as his or her power increases. The statement was made by Lord Acton, a British historian of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

Jan 17, 2006


Senate Democratic leader bans staff from accepting lobbyist gifts
John Byrne
Published: January 17, 2006

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has formally banned his staff effective immediately from accepting gifts of any kind from lobbyists, RAW STORY has learned.

In a memo last night, Reid chief of staff Susan McCue instructed Reid staffers not to accept any gifts from lobbyists. The move is a precursor to a package of ethics reforms the senator plans to introduce Wednesday with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), the 'Honest Leadership Act.'

Reid staffers will continue to be able to speak with lobbyists, an aide said, though all travel, gifts and meals will be banned.

The Honest Leadership Act includes a provision called the 'Jack Abramoff Rule,' which would apply these standards to all other senators, banning lobbyist gifts. Aides say they don't know whether Reid's voluntary ban will be embraced by other Democratic senators, though it is certain to put pressure on Democratic senators to ditch special interest gifts.

Other details are scarce. An aide said that the bill is still being prepared and has yet to be finalized.

Jan 15, 2006

Yeah Or Ney..?

Jan 14, 2006

A Thousand Words...

Best of the Post: Politics
The best political photographs taken by Washington Post photographers in 2005.
My favorites are 19 and 23.

Another Great One...

I was one of about 800 people who attended a memorial for the Honorable Eugene Joseph McCarthy today at Washington's National Cathedral. A bagpipe procession started the service, and Peter Yarrow of the folk group Peter, Paul and Mary sang "O Beautiful For Spacious Skies" and "This Land Is Your Land."

President Clinton as usual did his "I am the greatest public speaker in the world" routine. I sat two rows behind Ralph Nader, unsafe in any election?


Jan 13, 2006

"I Have A Dream.."

by Martin Luther King, Jr.

Delivered on the steps at the Lincoln Memorial
in Washington D.C. on August 28, 1963.

Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of captivity. But one hundred years later, we must face the tragic fact that the Negro is still not free.

One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land.

So we have come here today to dramatize an appalling condition. In a sense we have come to our nation's capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir.

This note was a promise that all men would be guaranteed the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check which has come back marked "insufficient funds." But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation.

So we have come to cash this check -- a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to open the doors of opportunity to all of God's children. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood.

It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment and to underestimate the determination of the Negro. This sweltering summer of the Negro's legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. Those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights.

The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges. But there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.

We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. we must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.

The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny and their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom.

We cannot walk alone. And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, "When will you be satisfied?" we can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro's basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.

Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley of despair. I say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal." I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slaveowners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor's lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together. This is our hope. This is the faith with which I return to the South. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

This will be the day when all of God's children will be able to sing with a new meaning, "My country, 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the pilgrim's pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring." And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania! Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado! Let freedom ring from the curvaceous peaks of California! But not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia! Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee! Let freedom ring from every hill and every molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.

When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, "Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!"

Like Any Other Day...

unless we are talking about YOU.

Jan 12, 2006

Brass Ones...

or Supergirl?

Pelosi Wants Probe of 'Corrupt Congress'

You go, girl!

House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi said Republicans had created "one of the most closed, corrupt congresses in history" and urged the House ethics committee to investigate GOP lawmakers linked to lobbyist Jack Abramoff.

"It's hard for the American people to understand how corrupt it is here," the California Democrat said at a news conference.

Nancy, I understand, we all understand. Let's get busy.

Hey Zeus..!

Plug this hole.

Uh toh, privacy is not so private anymore. It looks like I don't need a warrant or probable cause anymore when investigating suspected evil doers, but on the flip side they too can check out my phone records and yours as well!
What do you think?

Holy Smokes..!

The Impeachment of George W. Bush might snowball..

And Now Come Women..?

Come on Ted! If Sam was a member of Spanky and Alfalfa's He Man Women Hater's Club at age 8 would that be held against him too, let alone Log Cabin Republicans?

Happy Thursday...

January is going to be my best month ever!

Jan 11, 2006

What Am I, Corned Beef..?

Alito, Alito, Alito!

Everywhere I go in the blogosphere, people are blogging the Alito hearings. WHY?

I feel like Jan Brady! ;)

What I wouldn't do for a Katz's Deli corned beef and pastrami sandwich right about now!

T-Shirt Anyone..?

Americablog has a crazy t-shirt for sale! ;)

Brass Ones...

"As far as I'm concerned, as long as I don't say anything that's classified, I'm not worried," he said. "We need to clean up the intelligence community. We've had abuses, and they need to be addressed." <more>

See you on Capitol Hill!

I Spy Motive...

this one takes four bills.

Jan 10, 2006

Word Up...

truth out - truth be told.

Jan 9, 2006

Meeting Of Minds...

Congrats to my pal Sam on his big day. :)

Kangaroo Court...

fines Redskins' Taylor $17,000 for spitting.

What should the penalty be when elected officials and public servants defecate on the Constitution?

BTW, If I were a betting man my money would be on the Skins besting the Pats in the Super Bowl....sorry Seattle and Chicago ;)

Friends To The End..?

Child's Play or Risky Bidness?

Amigos, help me out with a caption aqui, si'?

Any Recommendations...?

Commitment to Hospitals
Section 135:17-a
135:17-a Competency Hearing; Commitment for Treatment. –

I. If, after hearing, the district court or superior court determines that the defendant is not competent to stand trial, the court shall order treatment for the restoration of competency unless it determines, by clear and convincing evidence, that there is no reasonable likelihood that the defendant can be restored to competency through appropriate treatment within 12 months. If the court finds, by clear and convincing evidence, that the defendant cannot be restored to competency within 12 months, the case against the defendant shall be dismissed without prejudice and the court shall proceed as provided in paragraph V.

II. If the defendant is to undergo treatment to restore competency, he or she may be treated in the state mental health system or at the secure psychiatric unit only under an order for involuntary admission or involuntary emergency admission ordered by the district court or probate court having jurisdiction pursuant to RSA 135-C. In all other cases, the accused shall, if otherwise qualified, be admitted to bail. The court may order bail supervision by the division of field services and impose such conditions, in addition to the appropriate course of treatment to restore competency, as the court deems necessary to ensure the appearance of the defendant for further proceedings in the case, and the safety of the defendant and the community.

The Most Reverend Pat Robertson comes to my mind...

Mellow Comrade...


Smile more, and stop skipping your three squares a day!


PS: Krispy Cremes do wonders for the gaunt look. ;)

Quote Of The Year...

so far.

FBI’s Washington field office, Michael Mason, congratulated some 15 agents and 15 support staff under him on the case for “a huge accomplishment” in squeezing Jack Abramoff to make a deal after 18 months of investigation and negotiation, one that made
“a huge contribution to ensuring the very integrity of our government.”
But he added that “the case is far from over...”
Special Agent Michael Mason is a dedicated public servant and he rocks!

Say Cheese....

President Bush is soooooooo photogenic! 195 photos and we get this? MR. McCLELLAN: Yes, I said it's possible that they would have met at a holiday reception or some other widely attended gathering. The President does not know him, nor does the President recall ever meeting him.

White House Bracing For The Worst...Secret Service Helped Staff Tabulate Abramoff Visits To White House, Photos Taken With Bush...

BTW - some say investigators are viewing Abramoff as “the middle guy”— suggesting there are bigger targets in their sights. The FBI has 13 field offices across the country working on the case, with two dozen agents assigned to it full time and roughly the same number working it part time. “We are going to chase down every lead,” says Chris Swecker, head of the FBI’s Criminal Division.

No Mo Money!

I say - let's make FONDUE!

Jan 5, 2006

Newt Is Posturing...

for a higher calling?

I forget, why did he leave Congress?

Jan 4, 2006

I Am GOP Hear Me Roar...

"You lied! . . . You betrayed him! You twisted his words! . . . We don't know you. You don't exist. . . . You are dead to us."

There is nothing worse than the scorn of a prosecutor or woman, but to leave this gem for a manicurist? What was he thinking? - Ex-fiancee turned them in

Oh my! - Abramoff says he can implicate 60 lawmakers

Secret? - Stashed a secret $20m

Jan 3, 2006

Happy Happy New Year...