August 27th, 2008

glasses

Five arrested in alleged plot to kill British Prime Minister

Fifth arrest in alleged plot to kill British Prime Minister

Wed Aug 27, 6:04 AM

By The Associated Press

LONDON - Police in Britain say that a fifth suspect has been arrested in an alleged plot to kill British Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

Greater Manchester Police say the latest suspect is a 29-year-old man arrested Tuesday in Derby in central England.

Police are still questioning three men arrested on Aug. 14.

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VA Hospital Released Vet Who Refused To Be Guinea Pig: VA Secretary Apologizes

ALLIANCE FOR HUMAN RESEARCH PROTECTION - Promoting Openness, Full Disclosure, and Accountability
http://www.ahrp.org and http://ahrp.blogspot.com


The secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs has apologized to the family of an Army veteran who died last year after being turned away from a Bronx VA hospital after he refused to participate in an Alzheimer's disease study.

His widow, Mrs. Aimee Fitzgerald, said that researchers at the Bronx VA wanted her husband to enroll in the Alzheimer's experiment "to observe the natural and ravaging course of the disease and his eventual death."

When he (and she) refused to give consent, Mrs. Fitzgerald charges, the hospital turned her husband away without providing the care that he needed. He died within the month.

Hospital officials deny it, but the documents that Mrs. Fitzgerald showed us, back her up. 

Mrs. Fitzgerald is demanding answers from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) as to whether human research testing is taking a priority over the health care of veterans at its hospitals. 

"I want them to be held accountable for this, to prevent this from happening to someone else," Aimee Fitzgerald said. "Nothing could have saved Joe, but the care there was hateful and incompetent."

From readers' comments about this "story" it is obvious that Joe Fitzgerald is not the only veteran to have been abused by a VA facility, confirming that when medicine degenerates into a commercial enterprise patients are treated like commodities.  See: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2008/aug/22/hospital-released-vet-who-refused-study/?page=3
 
"Disposable Heroes" was the title of an investigative report by The Washington Times about the VA's unethical experimentation on US troops. "Currently, the VA and other federal agencies are conducting nearly 300 clinical studies involving veterans with PTSD. Most studies are behavioral, including one that tests the effects of yoga on PTSD sufferers. Twenty-five, however, are testing drugs on 4,796 veterans, more than half (2,488) of whom are just returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to clinical trials filed with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and reviewed by The Times."  See: http://www.washingtontimes.com/interactives/disposable-heroes/
 
Among the controversial dangerous drugs being tested on US soldiers is Pfizer's anti-smoking drug, Chantix, whose documented serious risks include psychotic episodes, violence and suicide. The FDA acknowledged that nearly 40 suicides and more than 400 incidents of suicidal behavior have since been linked to Chantix. Yet, 1,000 soldiers were corraled as human subjects to test the effect of the drug.

Iraq war veteran James Elliott, who testified before a congressional committee in July, stated that he sought treatment from the VA for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and instead was persuaded to join a smoking-cessation study. While taking a smoking-cessation drug, he suffered a psychotic episode.

Mr. Elliott said the first doctor he visited at the Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System in Little Rock to seek treatment for PTSD "wasn't concerned about my day-to-day life. ... He wasn't concerned with my wartime experiences. He wasn't concerned about if I was going to make it home safely after the appointment."

When medicine veers from its therapeutic focus and physicians and hospitals engage in commercially-driven drug trials, patients' VA needs are sacrificed.

Contact: Vera Hassner Sharav, veracare@ahrp.org,
212-595-8974
 
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Hospital released vet who refused study - Widow sees priority as research, not care
 
WASHINGTON TIMES, Audrey Hudson 
August 22, 2008

An Army veteran seeking treatment for his sudden loss of motor skills was turned away from a veterans hospital in the Bronx, N.Y., in May 2007 after he refused to participate in a human subject experiment on Alzheimer's disease.

Joe Fitzgerald, 74, died of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease - the human form of mad cow disease - less than a month after being dismissed without diagnosis from James J. Peters VA Medical Center.

***

Moreover, Iraq war veteran James Elliott told a congressional committee in July that he sought treatment from the VA for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and instead was persuaded to join a smoking-cessation study. While taking a smoking-cessation drug, he suffered a psychotic episode.

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VA chief offers family apology
 
THE WASHINGTON TIMES, Audrey Hudson (Contact)
Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs has apologized to the family of an Army veteran who died last year after being turned away from a Bronx VA hospital after he refused to participate in an Alzheimer's disease study.

Joe Fitzgerald, 74, died of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease - the human form of mad cow disease - less than a month after being dismissed without diagnosis or treatment at James J. Peters VA Medical Center, The Washington Times reported Friday.

His widow, Aimee Fitzgerald, has demanded answers from the VA as to whether human research testing is taking a priority over the health care of veterans after the agency responded that the Alzheimer's study was a "mandate."

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Joe Lieberman: `Time for Israel to Act` Against Iran

Lieberman: `Time for Israel to Act` Against Iran
on Wednesday, August 27, 2008 - By: Silverstein, Richard

In all the coverage of Joe Lieberman’s address to the Christians United for Israel gala last month, only Justin Vogt, writing for The National, seems to have noticed that Lieberman tacitly called for Israel to attack Iran.
 
Joe Lieberman addresses 'A Night to Honor Israel' CUFI gala despite 40,000 Jews who said 'Don't go, Joe'
 
Considering that this man may be John McCain’s running mate in a few days or weeks, I can’t understand why this story hasn’t gotten more play:
Though careful to say he hoped war with Iran could be avoided, the senator ended his address with a Biblically-coded call for military action against the Islamic Republic. According to the Book of Exodus, when faced with Pharaoh’s army behind them and the Red Sea in front of them, the Israelites panicked…

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The Democratic Party platform sticks closely to the pro-Israel lobby's line

Not much change in the platform of Obama's Democratic Party

By Ron Kampeas

Delegates celebrate in Denver during the Democratic National Convention on August 25, 2008. Photo by Rachel Feierman/DNC.

Delegates celebrate in Denver during the Democratic National Convention on August 25, 2008. Photo by Rachel Feierman/DNC.

Denver —  When it comes to the Middle East and Sen. Barack Obama's Democratic Party platform, things are staying pretty much the same – which, in this case, is the kind of change pro-Israel activists can believe in. 

The platform committee appears to have heeded recommendations by the National Jewish Democratic Council advising the party not to veer too far from previous platforms when it comes to the Mideast.

"The Middle East planks of previous platforms have been carefully crafted and have served us well as a party and a country," Ira Forman, the NJDC's executive director, advised the committee in July.

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Media Blackout: Bush has quietly sent the largest armada into the Persian Gulf since the Iraq war

by Gary North

The media have covered such recent events as the Olympics, the selection of Joe Biden as the Vice Presidential candidate for the Democratic Party, and what John McCain is going to do about the selection of the Vice President of the Republican Party. Now the media will focus on the national convention of the Democratic Party.

The most important news for the month of August was the fact that President Bush has quietly sent the largest armada into the Persian Gulf since the Iraq war began in 2003, when there were six carrier groups. This is a huge number of ships to be concentrated in one location in peacetime.

This story has been completely ignored by the news media all over the West. The only coverage is from special-interest websites. It was only on Saturday morning, August 23, that I learned what was going on.

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Running for War President at Any Cost

Truthdig

Posted on Aug 26, 2008

By Robert Scheer

Just great! Nuclear-armed Pakistan is falling apart, Iran’s nuclear program is unchecked and congressional legislation on cooperation with the Russians on controlling nuclear proliferation is now dead in the water. Horrid news except for Sen. John McCain, who thrills to a repeat of the danger lines of the Cold War, and now stands a good chance of being our next president.

A very good chance, if the Russian recognition of the independence of two breakaway Georgia provinces can be elevated to the status of a major challenge to the security of the United States. It is an absurd claim: How can one justify uncritical support for the independence of Kosovo from Serbia earlier this year while denouncing a similar claim by a Georgian ethnic minority? It is also difficult to ignore that it was Georgia’s president and close McCain friend, Mikheil Saakashvili, who upset the status quo by invading first.

Saakashvili’s attempt to compare the Russian response with that of the “Stalinist Soviet Union” is a nutty reference to a Georgian-born tyrant who ruled Russia and who is still revered in much of his native Georgia. But when you need a new Stalin to get a Cold War going, President Dmitry Medvedev and the elected members of a unanimous Russian parliament will have to do. And McCain is very happy to have this card to play.

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Larry Flynt: Joe Scarborough had an affair with his intern and then killed her

Who Is MSNBC Anchor Joe Scarborough?


While the media was obsessed with Chandra Levy, another congressional staffer was found dead in then-representative and current MSNBC talk-show host Joe Scarborough's office. Unlike Gary Condit, Scarborough got a free ride from the press.

Report by Denis Wright

In the morning of July 20, 2001, the body of Lori Klausutis, who had worked as an aide to Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough for approximately two years, was found in Scarborough's Fort Walton Beach, Florida, office.

There were no witnesses to Klausutis's death.

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Foreign Lobbyists and the Making of US Policy

August 27, 2008

American politicians are for sale – and so is our foreign policy

by Justin Raimondo

"Politics stops at the water's edge" is an old aphorism that aptly describes the history and current trend of American politics. The period marking the run-up to World War II was the last time we saw any meaningful discussion of America's role in the world. Ever since that famous victory, the interventionist consensus has been bipartisan and broad, at least in elite circles. All the newspaper editors, the TV anchors, the policy wonks, and the bloggers-of-note agree: we must go global. The only other choice is a debilitating "isolationism," economic as well as diplomatic-military, that would consign us to an autarkic well of loneliness.

This narrative has dominated the foreign policy discourse lo these many years and given rise to what other writers have referred to as "the imperial presidency," the extra-constitutional bloating of the executive authority. This tendency has been taken to its ultimate extreme by the Bush administration, whose legal theorists impart to the president near-dictatorial powers in wartime. Given what ought to be the GOP's signature slogan – wartime all the time – the implications for the survival of the republic are ominous. However, it was a Democrat – Harry Truman – who set the fatal precedent when he called American troops to defend South Korea without bothering to go to Congress for permission. Ever since then the precedent has not only held, it has gone largely unchallenged. Politics may indeed stop at the water's edge, but a president's authority really begins there: he is the supreme arbiter of our foreign policy, a virtual dictator in that vital realm, whereas his authority over domestic policy is not even remotely comparable.

This brazen Bonapartism is merely the logical outgrowth of a foreign policy initially taken up with alacrity by the Democrats: first, with Woodrow Wilson at their head, and later on with FDR leading the charge. Both dragged us into easily avoidable foreign wars. Both cracked down on internal opposition, jailing antiwar protesters, instituting censorship via U.S. government control of the mails, and utilizing British and other undercover agents to neutralize the opposition.

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Pelosi Heckled Everywhere She Goes In Denver

August 26, 2008

Here in Denver this week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been heckled by fellow Democrats nearly everywhere she goes. It's to the point that before a breakfast "conversation" this morning hosted by Politico and Yahoo News, the audience was warned that any disruptions or demonstrations would result in immediate ejection from the sunny rooftop event.

Hecklers are usually angry about Pelosi's failure to end the war in Iraq.

Elected on the promise to end the war, Pelosi and her Democrats have instead voted repeatedly to fund it until the next administration. Even more galling to the anti-war crowd is that there are even more troops in Iraq under Pelosi's Congress than there ever were during Republican Congresses.

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The Future of Death at the Pentagon

The Pentagon: Some-Things-Never-Change Department

What a difference four and a half years makes. When I first penned "The Wild Weapons of DARPA," in March 2004, I was a new TomDispatch writer; the war in Iraq was not yet a year old; the war in Afghanistan had been bubbling for less than two and a half years, and I suggested that "what's left of the USSR is a collapsed group of half-failed states, while the U.S. stands alone as the globe's sole hyperpower." Today, I'm the long-time associate editor of TomDispatch.com; the United States, now far from a "hyperpower," continues to be bogged down in Iraq and Afghanistan with no end in sight in either occupation; and a resurgent Russia, now an energy superpower, has only recently invaded the hardly-failed state of Georgia.

Similarly, at that time, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the Pentagon's blue-skies research outfit, still looked young and vigorous. Today, DARPA is beginning to show the stresses of age. The agency turned 50 this year and, as Sharon Weinberger reported at Wired Magazine's Danger Room last month, "its birthday present appears to be another $100 million in budget cuts, according to a Defense Department document…" -- and this was on top of a $32 million loss the month before.

Still, much remains the same. Despite current budget cuts, the agency is still "both intellectually and financially, a fabulous and alluring gravy train," and its funding for the life sciences still offers "a fertile area to further the science of death and destruction." For example, back in 2004, I wrote that "DARPA has been creating insect databases while increasing efforts to 'understand how to use endemic insects as collectors of environmental information,'" and I asked: "How long until they start thinking about weaponizing insects as well?" Earlier this year, I answered my own question. Not long was the reply. I reported that DARPA was now working to create cyborg insects for surveillance purposes, and -- an even more frightening prospect -- "that such creatures could be weaponized, and the possibility, according to one scientist intimately familiar with the project, that these cyborg insects might be armed with 'bio weapons.'"

Read More >>
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The Hideous Horror of the Biden Selection

August 26, 2008

Death Match (II)

Part I: If the Words Don't Kill You, the Bombs Will

Here are some highlights from Stephen Zunes' article, "The Biden Betrayal":
[Biden]has been one [of] the leading congressional supporters of U.S. militarization of the Middle East and Eastern Europe, of strict economic sanctions against Cuba, and of Israeli occupation policies.

Most significantly, however, Biden, who chaired the Senate Foreign Relations Committee during the lead-up to the Iraq War during the latter half of 2002, was perhaps the single most important congressional backer of the Bush administration's decision to invade that oil-rich country.

One of the most important differences between Obama and the soon-to-be Republican presidential nominee John McCain is that Obama had the wisdom and courage to oppose the U.S. invasion of Iraq. Obama and his supporters had been arguing correctly that judgment in foreign policy is far more important than experience; this was a key and likely decisive argument in the Illinois senator's campaign against Sen. Hillary Clinton, who had joined McCain in backing the Iraq war resolution.

However, in choosing Biden, who, like the forthcoming Republican nominee, has more experience in international affairs but notoriously poor judgment, Obama is essentially saying that this critical difference between the two prospective presidential candidates doesn't really matter. This decision thereby negates one of his biggest advantages in the general election. Of particular concern is the possibility that the pick of an establishment figure from the hawkish wing of the party indicates the kind of foreign policy appointments Obama will make as president.

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The Two Great Financial Mysteries of Our Time: Missing Money and Collateral Fraud

The US Housing Bill 2008: Part VIII

Wednesday, 27 August 2008, 3:46 pm
Column: Catherine Austin Fitts

Catherine Austin Fitts' Mapping the Real Deal series

Part VIII – The Two Great Financial Mysteries of Our Time: Missing Money and Collateral Fraud

See also: Parts I, II, III IV, V, VI, VII, VIII and IX

There are two great financial mysteries in America:

  • Where is all the missing money and how do we get it back?
  • How big is the missing collateral black hole and how will it be resolved?

These two mysteries are essentially part of one mystery at the heart of the matter: Who is in charge of—and what are—the real financial flows and assets of the central banking/warfare complex that increasingly governs the resources on our planet?

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Diversionary tactics or simple coincidence?

Related
Pictures of a Stock Market Mania
Bankers caught between hope and despair
Russia 'ready for new Cold War' over Georgia
Problem bank list keeps growing
FDIC may have to borrow money to cover bank failures

Aug 26, 2008

Dollar bill

Something of note always happens, either in the financial markets or on the geopolitical stage, or both, when this particular writer leaves for vacation - on this occasion the lower slopes of another major force, Mount Etna on Sicily. In fact, the past couple of weeks have been packed with incident and yet equity markets have proved relatively sanguine. Perhaps everybody is away on holiday, perhaps equity markets are genuinely much more immune to the periodic eruptions of bad news, having become quite used to them over the past twelve months or so. Whatever the reason, equity markets have appeared sanguine in the face of a paroxysm in the currency markets, further gyrations in global commodity prices, the Beijing Olympics and war in South Ossetia (coupled, more recently, with the signing of a military agreement between Poland and the USA). The obvious question is; are all these events linked in some way? If, as we attempt to reveal below, the answer is yes then it would seem prudent to encourage investors to remain wary until this particular tremor subsides.

Over the past week or so attention has focused on the dollar’s surprise recovery on the foreign exchanges. Ostensibly this has everything to do with interest rate differentials and the outlook for base rates on either side of the Atlantic Ocean (we are far from blind to the impact that the dollar’s revival, coupled with weaker base metal and oil prices, is having on the economies and investors elsewhere in the world but this note is back on familiar ground for conspiracy theorists). We have some sympathy with the view that UK and EU base rates will fall once headline inflationary pressure abates. Our expectation is that, in the not-too-distant future, headline inflation will peak and then begin to fall back.

Understandably, central bankers are becoming increasingly exercised by the outlook for growth. In the United States investors seem to be opting for the view that (despite its many pitfalls) headline Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will remain in positive territory. An upward revision to initial Q2 2008 output data has reinforced the perception that the next move in US base rates will be up rather than down. We do not agree. Earlier Week in Preview articles have illustrated the risks associated with pinning one’s colours too hard to that particular mast. Even if one were to adopt this folly, our assessment remains that the US economy could easily “double dip” as 2008 progresses into 2009. The positive impact of earlier tax rebates is probably past its zenith, while the positive impact of net exports may be undermined were the dollar’s revival to become entrenched. All that without the grinding inexorability of the credit crunch and its depressing impact on the housing market, consumer confidence and consumption. On balance we still think that the Federal Reserve has the scope to cut rates as activity slows.

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Why have candidates made no mention of financial crisis?

Related 
Analyst: FDIC Will Need Half A Trillon Dollars
 

Financial Crisis Is Absent From Agendas of Parties, Candidates

Rich MillerWed Aug 27, 12:01 AM ET

Aug. 27 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. is facing the worst financial crisis since the Depression. You would never know that from the Democrats' platform in Denver or its Republican counterpart, or from listening to Barack Obama or John McCain.

While both candidates have bemoaned the ravages of the subprime crisis, they have yet to spell out steps for tackling it, such as using taxpayer money to shore up banks and housing.

``They fail to come to grips with the biggest danger that is going to hit the next president in his first few months in office: the crisis in the capital markets,'' said David Smick, a Washington-based consultant to hedge funds and author of ``The World is Curved: Hidden Dangers to the Global Economy.''

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Taliban Gain New Foothold in Afghan City

The New York Times

August 27, 2008

By CARLOTTA GALL

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — The Taliban bomber calmly parked a white fuel tanker near the prison gates of this city one evening in June, then jumped down from the cab and let out a laugh. Prison guards fired on the bomber as he ran off, but they missed, instead killing the son of a local shopkeeper, Muhammad Daoud, who watched the scene unfold from across the street.

Seconds later, the Taliban fired a rocket-propelled grenade into the tanker, setting off an explosion that killed the prison guards, destroyed nearby buildings, and opened a breach in the prison walls as wide as a highway. Nearly 900 prisoners escaped, 350 of them members of the Taliban, in one of the worst security lapses in Afghanistan in the six years since the United States intervention here.

The prison break, on June 13, was a spectacular propaganda coup for the Taliban not only in freeing their comrades and flaunting their strength, but also in exposing the catastrophic weakness of the Afghan government, its army and the police, as well as the international forces trying to secure Kandahar.

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McCain and Obama: Pawns of the Global Elite

Related
Militarism and a Uni-Polar World


By Patrick Wood, Editor
Will it matter if Obama or McCain are elected in November? Hardly.

Both are rigidly backed by important members of the Trilateral Commission who hijacked the Executive Branch of the U.S. government starting in 1976 with the election of Jimmy Carter.

In Obama’s case, Zbigniew Brzezinski (co-founder of the Commission in 1973) is emerging as his principal advisor on foreign policy. Ex-Fed Chairman Paul Volker has made a once-in-a-lifetime, glowing endorsement of Obama. Madelyn Albright is seen sitting next to Obama in several conferences. Shoot, even Jimmy Carter himself endorses Obama. All are top members of the Commission.

John McCain is being supported by several Trilateral Commission giants including: Henry Kissinger, George Schultz, Lawrence Eagleburger and Alexander Haig. All of these are ex-Secretaries of State who issued a joint endorsement of McCain early-on in his campaign.
And, unless Obama shoots both of his own feet (or…?) before the general presidential election in November, he is most likely to be the next president of the United States.

You would think that Americans would want to know who the “special interests” are that are embodied by this Trilateral Commission, and what they intend to do or not do with America.

What is the Trilateral Commission?

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U.S. Soldiers Executed Iraqis, Statements Say

The New York Times

August 27, 2008

By PAUL VON ZIELBAUER

In March or April 2007, three noncommissioned United States Army officers, including a first sergeant, a platoon sergeant and a senior medic, killed four Iraqi prisoners with pistol shots to the head as the men stood handcuffed and blindfolded beside a Baghdad canal, two of the soldiers said in sworn statements.

After the killings, the first sergeant — the senior noncommissioned officer of his Army company — told the other two to remove the men’s bloody blindfolds and plastic handcuffs, according to the statements made to Army investigators, which were obtained by The New York Times.

The statements and other court documents were provided by a person close to one of the soldiers in the unit who insisted on anonymity and who has an interest in the outcome of the legal proceedings.

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Obama's anti-Iraq war stance wiped out by choosing hawk Biden

August 27, 2008

Biden and the anti-war constituency

Stephen Zunes: Obama's anti-Iraq war stance wiped out by choosing hawk Biden

Bio

Stephen Zunes is a professor of politics and international studies at the University of San Francisco and a contributor to Foreign Policy In Focus (www.fpif.org). From 1996 to 1999, he served as chair of the Board of Peaceworkers, a US-based group supporting the non-violent struggle of the Kosovar Albanians and other non-violent movements and peacemakers in areas of conflict.

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Novak: Avoiding a Joe Lieberman Disaster

Robert D. Novak

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Reports of strong support within John McCain's presidential campaign for Independent Democratic Sen. Joseph Lieberman as the Republican candidate for vice president are not a fairy tale. Influential McCain backers, plus McCain himself, would pick the pro-choice liberal from Connecticut if they thought they could get away with it.

But they can't get away with it -- and this has been made clear to McCain by none other than Joe Lieberman himself.

Lieberman surely doesn't know that much about Republican politics, but he has close Republican friends. One of them prevailed on Lieberman to tell McCain that a McCain-Lieberman ticket would be a disaster for all concerned, and especially for the GOP.

Actually, Lieberman is a heroic figure among Republicans for having risked his Senate seat to support President George W. Bush's war policy. But aside from the war, he votes the straight liberal line, including pro-choice on abortion. Lieberman's Republican friend told him that the Republicans would leave Minnesota in a state of disarray with a McCain-Lieberman ticket, alienating social conservatives who now make up the core of Republican voters.

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Colombia : A Case Study in Failed U.S. Intervention

Dan Kovalik

Posted August 26, 2008

As Noam Chomsky had noted many years ago, the amount of U.S. military assistance to a particular country is, as a general rule, directly proportional to the level of human rights violations committed by that country's military. That maxim certainly holds true in the Western Hemisphere where the greatest recipient of U.S. military aid in that region by far - Colombia - is also that region's greatest human rights abuser.

This fact was brought home just last week by an L.A. Times article (by Chris Kraul on August 21) which explained that while Colombia has received over $4 billion of U.S. military assistance since 2000, and while Colombian President Alvaro Uribe "has become the United States' No. 1 Latin American ally in its war on terrorism and drugs," Colombia is actually the greatest purveyor of terror against its own population in the region. To wit, as the article, citing the well-respected Colombian Commission of Jurists, notes, the Colombian military has been credibly accused of murdering 329 civilians in cold blood in 2007 - a 48% increase from the 223 reported in 2006. This brings to 997 the total of civilians murdered by the Colombian military since President Uribe, the U.S.'s top regional ally, took office in the spring of 2002. No other country in the Hemisphere even comes close to this horrendous record of state-sponsored violence.

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How dangerous a McCain presidency would be

Andrew Sullivan

Smears And Fears

27 Aug 2008 11:26 am

My main worry with John McCain is foreign policy. What do I worry about? That everything that has been awry with this administration would be made worse by his. Seeing the world as a series of enemies to be attacked rather than as a series of relationships to be managed and a series of foes to be undermined has proven of limited use. Even the successful removal of the Taliban has led, six years later, to a long and grueling counter-insurgency with no end in sight and a reconstituted al Qaeda in a nuclear-armed, unstable state. The invasion of Iraq - in the abstract, a noble cause against an evil enemy - has caused the deaths of hundreds of thousands, the displacement of millions, the price of $3 trillion ... all for a less despotic Shiite government in league with Iran, making contracts with China. And that's if it turns out as a success. Along the way, the US has lost a vast amount of its moral standing and its legitimacy as a global power-broker. Insofar as neoconservatives do not understand this, and cannot understand this, they are a clear and present danger to the security of the West. Their unwillingness to understand how the US might be perceived in the world, how a hegemon needs to exhibit more humility and dexterity to maintain its power, makes them - and McCain - extremely dangerous stewards of American foreign policy in an era of global terror. They are diplomatically and strategically autistic.

McCain's response to the calamities of the past eight years has been to compound them all.

It has been to propose a "surge" in Afghanistan, to aggressively embrace open-ended commitment to Iraq (if the Iraqis can be pressured hard enough), and to launch one new hot war against Iran and another cold one - and hot, by proxies - against Russia. And the way in which the question is debated - around asinine concepts of "toughness" or "sissiness" - leads to facile decisions. It also leads to ads like this one: fear-mongering as an argument. It should be noted that Obama's statement that Iran is "not a serious threat" is so out of context as to be a lie. He said it was "not a serious threat compared to the Soviet Union." That is a critical, historical point - a way of actually looking at foreign policy outside a box crafted by morons.

I don't know how smart McCain is. But this ad takes the smear and the fear to a new level:

--MORE WITH VIDEO--

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Obama Sought Earmarks For Biden Son's Clients

Obama, Biden's Son Linked by Earmarks

Candidate Got Funding for Nursing Program

By James V. Grimaldi and Kimberly Kindy

Washington Post Staff Writers
Wednesday, August 27, 2008; A16

Sen. Barack Obama sought more than $3.4 million in congressional earmarks for clients of the lobbyist son of his Democratic running mate, Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. of Delaware, records show. Obama succeeded in getting $192,000 for one of the clients, St. Xavier University in suburban Chicago.

Obama's campaign has taken a hard stance against the world of lobbying in the nation's capital. Obama said he limits his own efforts to get money for pet projects -- a process known as earmarking -- to those that benefit the public. He has posted his earmark requests on his presidential campaign Web site to encourage transparency.

Since Obama announced his selection of Biden on Saturday, attention has focused on Biden's lobbying connections as well as his son's lobbying activities. R. Hunter Biden is one of many relatives of members of Congress who work as lobbyists.

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Police Seize Journalists Notes About RNC Protest Plans

Added: August 27, 2008

A trio of journalists who have a track record of documenting police abuse at political conventions were stopped and searched during the early morning hours in Minneapolis. Police took their video equipment, cell phones, hard drive and notes about protests planned for next week's Republican National Convention.

No charges have been filed against the three, according to Mineapolis police spokesman Sgt. William Palmer.



more at http://www.theuptake.org
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Gulf Coasters: Time to Leave

The storm is headed directly towards New Orleans and may may reach category 4 strength by the time it makes land fall.

Tropical Storm GUSTAV


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This graphic shows an approximate representation of coastal areas under a hurricane warning (red), hurricane watch (pink), tropical storm warning (blue) and tropical storm watch (yellow). The orange circle indicates the current position of the center of the tropical cyclone. The black line and dots show the National Hurricane Center (NHC) forecast track of the center at the times indicated. The dot indicating the forecast center location will be black if the cyclone is forecast to be tropical and will be white with a black outline if the cyclone is forecast to be extratropical. If only an L is displayed, then the system is forecast to be a remnant low. The letter inside the dot indicates the NHC's forecast intensity for that time.

NHC forecast tracks of the center can be in error; track forecast errors in recent years were used to construct the areas of uncertainty for the first 3 days (solid white area) and for days 4 and 5 (white stippled area). These areas of uncertainty are formed by enclosing the area swept out by a set of circles (not shown) along the forecast track (at 12, 24, 36 hours, etc). The size of each circle is set so that two-thirds of historical official forecast errors over a 5-year sample fall within the circle. The historical data indicate the entire 5-day path of the center of the tropical cyclone will remain within the outer uncertainty area about 60-70% of the time. There is also uncertainty in the NHC intensity forecasts. The Maximum 1-minute Wind Speed Probability Table provides intensity forecast and uncertainty information.

It is also important to realize that a tropical cyclone is not a point. Their effects can span many hundreds of miles from the center. The area experiencing hurricane force (one-minute average wind speeds of at least 74 mph) and tropical storm force (one-minute average wind speeds of 39-73 mph) winds can extend well beyond the white areas shown enclosing the most likely track area of the center. The distribution of hurricane and tropical storm force winds in this tropical cyclone can be seen in the Wind History graphic linked above.

Considering the combined forecast uncertainties in track, intensity, and size, the chances that any particular location will experience winds of 34 kt (tropical storm force), 50 kt, or 64 kt (hurricane force) from this tropical cyclone are presented in tabular form for selected locations and forecast positions. This information is also presented in graphical form for the 34 kt, 50 kt, and 64 kt thresholds.

Note:  A detailed definition of the NHC track forecast cone is also available.

Link

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9/11 Truthers march in Denver

Afternoon march focuses on 9/11 attacks


Protesters march in Civic Center Park this afternoon, contending the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks were a U.S. government conspiracy.

Demonstrators from a group called 9/11 Truth wear masks as they ride on a float labeled "God's Gitmo" at a rally Tuesday at Civic Center.

Originally published 03:11 p.m., August 26, 2008

Updated 03:11 p.m., August 26, 2008

Protesters march in Civic Center Park this afternoon, contending the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks were a U.S. government conspiracy.

CIVIC CENTER – Chanting “9/11 was an inside job!” protesters congregated here before hitting the parade route this afternoon, cameras in hand to document everything that happened and supply their live feed to those watching online.

Organized by We Are Change, the march brought calls of “9/11 truth now!” and signs calling for an investigation of the Sept. 11 attacks.

We Are Change
has been filming protests this week in an effort to catch illegal action – whether by protesters or cops.

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Food riots erupt in India as floods ravage villages

Food riots as Bihar floods destroy 250,000 homes

2 hours, 55 minutes ago

Food riots erupted on Wednesday in Bihar, where more than 2 million people have been forced from their homes and about 250,000 houses destroyed in what officials say are the worst floods in 50 years.

One person was killed in Madhepura district when angry villagers fought among themselves over limited supplies of food and medicines at overcrowded relief centres.

The Kosi river in Bihar, one of India's poorest states, smashed through mud embankments and changed course last week, unleashing huge walls of water that inundated hundreds of villages and towns. The floods have since killed nearly 50 people in Bihar.

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Sen. Stevens wins Alaska primary despite fraud indictments

Indictments don't spoil Stevens' re-election bid

By STEVE QUINN, Associated Press Writer1 hour, 49 minutes ago

Even though he's facing federal charges, Ted Stevens remains feisty as ever. The 84-year-old Republican handily won his primary race for Senate and immediately proclaimed the November election a "piece of cake."

That's despite some major hurdles Stevens faces in the next few months.

Stevens has a September trial that will keep him off the campaign trail for weeks, and he's up against his toughest opponent in his 40 years in office: popular Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich.

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Ohio GOP illegally funneled $500,000 to Blackwell

Ohio Republicans Accused Of Misdirecting Campaign Funds In '06

Tuesday,  August 26, 2008 12:33 PM

Updated: Tuesday,  August 26, 2008 6:38 PM

Video
COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio Secretary of State's office notified the state's Republican Party on Tuesday that it believes the party misdirected funds during the last election cycle, 10 Investigates Paul Aker reported.

According to the Secretary of State, a fund used to support Republican candidates for state office in 2006 received nearly $500,000 it should not have.

WEB EXTRA: Read The Letter From The Secretary Of State's Office

The secretary's office said those funds were meant only for candidates running for federal office, Aker reported.

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A New Breed Of Hackers Tracks Online Acts of War

'Hacktivists' Update Their Mission

By Kim Hart

Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, August 27, 2008; D01

TORONTO -- Here in the Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto, a new breed of hackers is conducting digital espionage.

They are among a growing number of investigators who monitor how traffic is routed through countries, where Web sites are blocked and why it's all happening. Now they are turning their scrutiny to a new weapon of international warfare: cyber attacks.

Tracking wars isn't what many of the researchers, who call themselves "hacktivists," set out to do. Many began intending to help residents in countries that censor online content. But as the Internet has evolved, so has their mission.

Ronald J. Deibert, director of the Citizen Lab, calls the organization a "global civil society counterintelligence agency" and refers to the lab as the "NSA of operations."

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Iraq vets take to the streets to protest the war

Posted by Harry Esteve, The Oregonian August 26, 2008 12:51PM

Rob Finch

DENVER-- A few dozen Iraq War vets, dressed in full camo gear, staged one of the more eye-catching demonstrations of the day outside the Colorado Convention Center, enacting what they said are everyday street scenes in the Middle East.

The group, representing Iraq Veterans Against the War, staged a series of simulated car stops, detainments, reaction to sniper fire and secure movement through an urban area.

"We're trying to bring a taste of what an occupied city feels like," said Army Spc. Garret Reppenhagen, one of the participants.

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McCain, Obama, and the Money Men

August 26, 2008 By: Martin Category: 2008 election, Barack Obama, Congress, Democrats, FCC, George W. Bush, John McCain, Republicans, blogosphere, corporatism, culture, journalism, law of the jungle, media, openness, outsourcing, populism, recommended reading, stupid things I read on the Internets, surveillance, technology

Last night at the Democratic National Convention, corporate sponsor AT&T held a party for “Blue Dog” Democrats that helped support the legislation guaranteeing the telecom immunity for its part in illegal spying on Americans. The idea that the Democratic party would accept sponsorship for its convention from this company after what they did is sick enough, but when a team of bloggers including Glenn Greenwald, Jane Hamsher, Matt Stoller, and John Amato tried to interview guests asking them why they were there and for whom, they got the Five-0 Treatment. Read the article and watch the video.

This is the latest example of the corruption that rests at the heart of our political process–the easy access moneyed interests have to candidates and their ability to make our representatives twist like leaves in the wind when the bucks come out.

Earlier this month Matt Taibbi delivered a scorching article detailing just how deeply corporate powers are lining the pockets of both Obama and McCain, playing both sides to ensure their aims are favored:

By now it should be clear what type of service Wall Street will
demand. The financial disaster dumped on us by eight years of Bush’s
mismanagement has left America with the prospect of short-term
solutions in the form of massive government bailouts, and long-term
solutions in the form of reform and regulation. A big chunk of the $1
billion in cash that will be spent on the presidential race this year
represents Wall Street’s desire to make sure that both candidates can
be counted on to make the short-term bailouts large and passionate, and
the reforms gentle and halfhearted. “They want to make sure there’s
socialism when they need it — bailouts — and capitalism when they need
that,” says Pollin.

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Obama edits Kucinich's,'They're asking for another four years. In a just world, they'd get 10 to 20'

Related
Full Video: Dennis Kucinich at DNC: "Wake Up America!": Watch Kucinich Bring The Crowd To Its Feet Kucinich electrifies convention arena

Dennis Kucinich gets edited


by Mark Naymik August 27, 2008

Democratic National Convention

DENVER -- Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama used his editing pen on Cleveland Congressman Dennis Kucinich's speech Tuesday night, according to The Hill, a Washington, D.C., newspaper.

The Obama campaign has been looking closely at speeches during the convention, trying to keep them on message. The campaign struck this line, addressing Republicans, from Kucinich's speech:

"They're asking for another four years -- in a just world, they'd get 10 to 20."

Link
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America Against The World


Andrew Sullivan

27 Aug 2008

The op-ed in today's WSJ by the McCain duo of Lieberman and Graham is far more important for this election, it seems to me, than parsing the dynamics of the Clinton-Obama marriage. What they are laying out in very clear terms is the agenda of a McCain presidency. The agenda is war and the threat of war - including what would be an end to cooperation with Russia on securing loose nuclear materials and sharing terror intelligence, in favor of a new cold war in defense of ... Moldova and Azerbaijan. I'm sure McCain would like to have his Russian cooperation, while demonizing and attacking them on the world stage, but in the actual world, he cannot. Putin and Medvedev are not agreeable figures, and I do not mean in any way to excuse their bullying. But this is global politics, guys, and these are the cold, hard choices facing American policy makers.

And in this telling op-ed Lieberman and Graham simply do not even confront them. It's all about a moral posture, with no practical grappling with the consequences. It's the mindset that gave you the Iraq war - but multiplied.

John McCain is making it quite clear what his foreign policy will be like: tilting sharply away from the greater realism of Bush's second term toward the abstract moralism, fear-mongering and aggression of the first. Not just four more years - but four more years like Bush's first term. If the Democrats cannot adequately warn Americans of the dangers of a hotheaded temperament and uber-neo-con mindset in the White House for another four years, they deserve to lose. If Americans decide they want a president who will be more aggressive and less diplomatic than the current one, then they should at least brace for the consequences - for their economy and their security.

In my view, the fear card has only one truly compelling target in this election: McCain.

Link
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The "Good Germans" at the Democratic Convention

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

After two days of occasionally dropping by, so to speak, to see what my old political party was up too, I find myself no more knowledgeable about what it is the Democrats stand for than I was before this convention. The only thing that I do know is that they don’t want to see John McCain elected. The arguments that they raise about a possible McCain presidency and what it will mean are at the very least perfect examples of fear mongering. I’m not saying that they are not entirely wrong either. The problem I have with the Democrats is not how they view a McCain presidency; it is how they view an Obama presidency.

I believe that the key to winning this election, is winning it with a majority that cannot be tampered with. It is no longer safe to win an election with a close popular vote count, or an electoral vote count… close races have been turned by political operatives with the help of friendly State examiners and friendly courts. Voters have been disenfranchised with no real recourse. No, elections in this electronic age of Diebold machines and artificial time limits on voter recounts must rely on winning handily, close simply will not do. This is why the Democrats must represent a real choice to the voters. The simple strategy of being “the lesser of two evils” will not draw out people that otherwise would not vote. It is very tempting for many Americans to make arrangements to leave work or home, to not bother waiting in lines, and to generally not participate in the election process that can be truly annoying, if there is not a real desire to see your candidate win. This is much more a problem for Democrats than Republicans, as the Republican voters can usually be counted to make it to the polls. Why Congress, in this day and age, has not made it easier for people to vote is a mystery.

This is the primary reason that Obama must define himself, and do it soon. I see this as an almost impossible task, simply because of the people that are involved in his campaign. If I were to put myself in Obama’s shoes, I would not be very comfortable. The American people want a different direction for America. I believe that this different direction doesn’t consist of moving our primary zone of combat operations from Iraq to Afghanistan, or to continue to support Israel unconditionally, regardless of what they do. It also doesn’t mean propping up the military in a former Soviet Republic and prodding them to attack Russian soldiers as we have done in Georgia. I believe that most Americans want a return to financial responsibility and get our national debt under control. They want access to health care and to see this disparity between the wealthy and the middle class reversed. They want their children to receive a world class education. They also want to stop the outsourcing of American industry. They want to see jobs created by rebuilding the infrastructure of this country, and they really don’t care if it is done by the public or private sectors, they just want the jobs this will create and bridges that won’t fall down.

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McCain In A Nutshell: Philanderer, War Pimp, Bush Policy Clone, and Neocon Liar

Tuesday, 26 August 2008, 12:27 pm
Column: Vincent L. Guarisco

John McCain In A 'Nutshell'-- Philanderer, War Pimp, Bush Policy Clone, and Neocon Liar...


(Without his shell, McCain is simply a nut that needs to be cracked, picked apart and exposed)

By Vincent L. Guarisco

Back in April 2007, I wrote a zinger about the foolish maverick John McCain after he returned from his triumphant walkabout on the brutal streets of Baghdad. Johnny Boy headed straight for the public airways, where he smirkingly gushed that the streets of Iraq are now 'safe.' The foolish war pimp tried to sell the lie that everything was cozy and secure, even as he strutted around wearing his bulletproof vest, surrounded by a heavily armed military entourage buzzing in air and on the ground all around him. Indeed, according to McCain, Baghdad was safe then, and it’s even safer today.

Gee, pass the prozac! I guess we're supposed to forget about the scores of GIs and civilians who have since met their brutal end in the very place McCain pranced around. Funny how ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC, FOX and the rest of the sorry corporate media failed to do follow-up stories, to show those same streets marred with puddles of blood laced with intestinal tracks, brain matter -- clogged with body parts and various limbs scattered about on those same safe streets. When McCain made his announcement, more than 3,200 of his fellow servicemen and women had been slaughtered in Iraq, millions of Iraqis had been displaced, forced to flee the country or killed outright. Today, 4,147 Americans have been killed and we'll never know how many Iraqis, because we don't do body counts.

Moving right along...

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Baghdad: Back to reality

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

I'm home again after a very pleasant and relaxing vacation with lots of fun, I'm back to the misery and daily struggles to provide what needs no efforts and considered normal and natural in the entire world. It was the best vacation I ever had, I wanted it to be a run-away vacation, I wanted to be isolated from everything; just relaxation…so I didn't watch the news, didn't open a single news website or a blog and I even didn't give my number there to anyone so that if anything bad happens I wouldn't know, I just wanted to run away and relax because I really need that to carry on fighting and I succeeded in that. I'm back again with full charge to face the ugly truth of life in Baghdad. This vacation was much different than the other vacations in some aspects which made it really great and it was the first time when I go outside Iraq and never miss it and never wanted to go back even emotionally because I went to a country where Iraqis are respected and treated exactly like the rest of the world, I went to a country that should be a model for all the world, when I was there I felt like I always wanted to feel, I lived like I always dreamed to live; I don't want to live like a king or anything, I just want to live freely and feel safe, I just want to walk in the streets holding my wife's hand with no worries in mind, I just want to get back home and the electricity is on and everything is working as I want, I just want to be treated like I deserve and I just want to do what I want when I want and of course this is not possible in Baghdad…Thank you god for your blessings that made it possible for me live a few weeks like I dreamed in the "real me" status.

As the plane landed in Baghdad's international airport and as I took the first step outside the plane, throw the first glance to the dark city with no electricity, felt the extra hot air and noticed the men with the AKs I turned into the "fighter" status that is really crucial to survive and continue living in Baghdad without having a mental disease or become a dead body. I returned home to figure out that there is a fuel crisis since two weeks, no electricity for the past 3 days (as my neighbor told me).

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The Housing Bubble Villains Deny Responsibility

Monday 25 August 2008

by Dean Baker, t r u t h o u t | Perspective

photo
Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Donald Kohn and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke at the Annual Economic Symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, on August 22. (Photo: Reuters)

    The central bankers of the world gathered last weekend for their annual meeting at Jackson Hole, Wyoming. This was an opportunity to talk about the major issues confronting the world economy, as well as an opportunity to spend some time in a very beautiful vacation spot.

    When they met in Jackson Hole in 2005, the meetings were devoted to an Alan Greenspan retrospective, honoring his 18-year tenure as Federal Reserve Board chairman, which was due to end the following January. A number of papers were presented analyzing his record at the Fed, including one that raised the question of whether Mr. Greenspan was the greatest central banker of all time.

    The elite Jackson Hole crew did not debate whether Greenspan was the greatest central banker of all time this year. The world is now facing the most serious financial crisis since the Great Depression. At least, that is the assessment of Alan Greenspan. With house prices plunging, unemployment and inflation rates rising and banks failures mounting, Greenspan has a pretty good argument.

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The Real Rate of U.S. Inflation Is Now 13%

Mon Aug 25, 2008 7:00am CDT • The Mogambo Guru
By Richard Daughty

Related Articles

It was when “official government-approved” inflation figures were released that The Mogambo Guru really lost it last week. The official rate of inflation is now a staggering 5.6%. This is Terrible, Terrible News (TTN)…

When you look at what John Williams at shadowstats.com calculates as inflation, according to the time-honored method of actually looking at real prices instead of the “qualified estimates” that are used today, you will see that annual inflation in consumer prices is actually running at over 13%! Some of the worst in American history! We’re freaking doomed!

Anthony Cherniawski of The Practical Investor is not interested in my dour assessment of the situation, and took a look at the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), which increased a whopping 0.5% (non-seasonally adjusted) in July, which is plenty bad enough for one month, but one’s tongue tries to hide by jumping down one’s throat when one learns that it was not a fluke, and that prices are 5.6% higher than in July 2007! 5.6% annual inflation is the best they can wring from admittedly-doctored statistics? Yikes! I’m screaming my guts out here!

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Video; Matthews and Olbermann Rumble

Added: August 27, 2008

"First, Matthews bites the head off of his producer who tells him to wrap up the segment. Then, he snaps at Keith Olbermann because he feels he was accused of stealing an idea. Finally, he loses it when he feels Keith is making fun of him."

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Thai PM's compound stormed as anti-government protests grow

Fascism close to taking over Thailand

The "government" wants to replace the democracy with a system that would be dominated by appointees from the bureaucracy and the military.

David Pallister and agencies

* guardian.co.uk,
* Tuesday August 26 2008 10:40 BST

Anti-government protesters have stormed the compound of Thailand's prime minister, Samak Sundaravej, as part of demonstrations across Bangkok today aimed at forcing his resignation.

The rightwing People's Alliance for Democracy is behind the protests and shut down the National Broadcasting Services of Thailand TV channel with a pre-dawn raid on the main studios of the government-operated station.

"We are now controlling most of the key government offices to prevent them from coming to work," said Sondhi Limthongkul, a leader of the alliance.

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McCain held a campaign event, touting a song about 'screwing', with an audience of teens

Wed Aug 27, 1:40 AM Pacific

McCain and Bush

So John McCain on Tuesday accepted the endorsement of reggaeton recording artist Daddy Yankee at a high school in Phoenix. Obviously, with his 72nd birthday on Friday, McCain wanted to look cool, young, and hip.

But in introducing Daddy Yankee, McCain highlighted a song titled "Gasolina" which is not exactly about high energy prices. In fact, it's a song about sexual intercourse (to put it clinically).

Let's look at it this way: McCan held a campaign event at which he touted a song about screwing, and he did so in front of an audience of teens.

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The Land of the Silent and the Home of the Fearful

Wed, 08/27/2008 - 15:45 — dlindorff

I was a speaker last night at an anti-war event sponsored by the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Monmouth County, Progressive Democrats of America and Democrats For America in Lincroft, NJ, near the shore. It was a great group of activist Americans who want to see this country end the Iraq War, turn away from war as a primary instrument of policy, and start dealing with the pressing human needs of the country and the world.

Yet even in this group of committed people, one woman stood up during the question-and-answer session and said, “I want to get involved in writing emails to members of Congress urging them to cut off funding for the war and other things, but if I do that won’t I end up getting put on a `watch list’” or something?”

I told her the short answer was yes, she probably would. In George Bush’s and Dick Cheney’s America, no one is safe from such spying, and even from harassment, as witness Tom Feeley, the man behind the website Information Clearing House, who had armed men invade his house at night and threaten his wife complaining about his First Amendment-protected effort to publicize important stories on the Internet.

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'Wake up, America' : Transcript of Dennis Kucinich's War Cry

Full Video: Dennis Kucinich at DNC: "Wake Up America!": Watch Kucinich Bring The Crowd To Its Feet
Kucinich electrifies convention arena
Obama edits Kucinich's,'They're asking for another four years. In a just world, they'd get 10 to 20'

Transcript: Dennis Kucinich

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS | 8/26/08 9:12 PM EST

Remarks delivered by Rep. Dennis Kucinich of Ohio at the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday:

It's Election Day 2008. We Democrats are giving America a wake-up call. Wake up, America. In 2001, the oil companies, the war contractors and the neocon artists seized the economy and have added 4 trillion dollars of unproductive spending to the national debt. We now pay four times more for defense, three times more for gasoline and home heating oil and twice what we paid for health care.

Millions of Americans have lost their jobs, their homes, their health care, their pensions. Trillions of dollars for an unnecessary war paid with borrowed money. Tens of billions of dollars in cash and weapons disappeared into thin air, at the cost of the lives of our troops and innocent Iraqis, while all the president's oilmen are maneuvering to grab Iraq's oil.

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See a clip of Madonna's McCain-Hitler video

 See a clip of the video

Pics

Madonna courts controversy again over McCain video

Tue Aug 26, 7:16 PM

By Alex Dobuzinskis

 

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Madonna has always reveled in controversy and with the recent launch of her concert tour, "Sticky & Sweet," the 50-year-old pop star has kicked up a new fuss by comparing John McCain to Adolf Hitler in a video.

 

The dust-up is the latest in a career of risky moves that have paid off handsomely for Madonna, whose tours and albums have long mixed music with politics, sex and religion. While other stars rose to fame in the 1980s then faded away, "Material Girl" Madonna has become a global star and even courted controversy to stay relevant to younger audiences.

 

"Madonna seems to be an extraordinarily brilliant business woman in the business of culture," said Robert Thompson, a professor of media at and pop culture at Syracuse University.

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Indian police issued 'shoot on sight' orders

Indian police told to shoot religious rioters 

Wed Aug 27, 12:21 PM

BHUBANESWAR, India (AFP) - Indian police were ordered to shoot on sight to end Hindu-Christian clashes on Wednesday as Pope Benedict XVI "firmly condemned" violence that has killed at least nine people.

Parts of eastern Orissa state have been rocked by Hindu-Christian clashes since Saturday, when a popular hardline Hindu religious leader and four of his disciples were shot dead by unknown assailants.

"We issued shoot-on-sight orders in the wake of large-scale violence" despite a curfew imposed Monday, said local administrator Satyabrata Sahu. 

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A new 9/11 clue

By Jerry Mazza
Online Journal Associate Editor

Aug 27, 2008, 00:21

Recently, an email drifted in about an article I wrote, What were the Mossad with fraudulent New Zealand Passports doing in Iraq?

The writer said, “I’ve known about this for some time -- that the Mossad was involved in murdering our troops in a variety of methods to keep them there so we could ‘finish’ the job by destroying Syria and Iran. For years now I’ve suspected and now know for sure the Mossad had a lot to do with the 9/11 attack on the WTC. The attached mp3 is a recording of NYPD radio transmissions on 9/11. Listen from the 3-minute mark almost to the end. This was never reported in the media.”

The recording is titled, “The WTC-10-5-the-message-about-the-remote-controlled-plane.” In the mélange of scratchy voices bumping each other off and on, around minute three, the words “remote controlled-plane” bump through clearly, are interrupted, and finally assert quite clearly again that “there’s a big truck on King Street with the mural of an airplane painted on it diving into New York City and exploding.” It was later noted “King Street between 6th and 7th Avenues,” about a mile north of WTC, which was in direct line of sight from King St. and 6th Avenue. 

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Israel to buy US warship capable of launching multiple nuclear missiles


Israel to Buy US Warship, Develop Military Plans

26/08/2008 Israel is endlessly seeking to acquire modern weaponry, especially after it was dealt a sever blow in its war on Lebanon in 2006, when its warship, Hanit, was hit and after Iran announced it has produced a military submarine. In this context, the Israeli television revealed that the navy intends to buy a US warship capable of launching multiple nuclear missiles against “enemy cities.” According to the television report, the vessel also has the ability to protect Israeli cities against rocket attacks and be a strategic arm.

"This ship is different from all other known Israeli vessels. It is equipped with defense systems against rockets, submarines, and planes. It also has a Special Forces operations base and another for helicopters and drones," the director of NGS ship project Dan Schultz said.

Meanwhile, the Israeli television also uncovered that the Israeli Air Force has moved its airbase near the Ben-Gurion airport – after operating for forty years - to another base; the biggest in the Negev desert. The television also said that Hercules planes, capable of flying long distances, have been recalled to the base due to the fact that Israel expects its aerial bases to be targeted at the outset of the next war. 

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Gaza: UN expert welcomes landing of ships carrying human rights activists

Food aid being distributed at UNRWA's food centre, Beach Camp, Gaza Strip

25 August 2008 –
An independent United Nations human rights expert today hailed the landing of two wooden boats in Gaza carrying 46 human rights activists as a key symbolic victory. The activists – part of the Free Gaza Movement – seek to draw attention to the plight of the area’s 1.5 million residents who have been “under siege” for the past year, Richard Falk, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories, said in a statement.

“That siege, the coast blockade, and the overflights by Israeli aircraft all bear witness to the fact that despite Israel’s claimed ‘disengagement’ in 2005, these realities on the ground establish that Gaza remains under Israeli occupation, and as a result Israel remains legally responsible for protecting the human rights of its civilian population.”

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ABC Reporter Arrested in Denver Taking Pictures of Senators, Big Donors

ABC News

Asa Eslocker Was Investigating the Role of Lobbyists and Top Donors at the Convention

By BRIAN ROSS

DENVER Aug. 27, 2008—

 

Police in Denver arrested an ABC News producer today as he and a camera crew were attempting to take pictures on a public sidewalk of Democratic Senators and VIP donors leaving a private meeting at the Brown's Palace Hotel.

 

Police on the scene refused to tell ABC lawyers the charges against the producer, Asa Eslocker, who works with the ABC News investigative unit.

 

A police official later told lawyers for ABC News that Eslocker is being charged with trespass, interference, and failure to follow a lawful order. He also said the arrest followed a signed complaint from the Brown Palace Hotel.  

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US and Russian warships line up in dispute over Georgia

 Merkel expresses disapproval of Russian actions to Medvedev
• Russians unhappy with US for using military craft to deliver relief supplies

US and Russian warships took up positions in the Black Sea today in a risky war of nerves on opposing sides of the Georgia conflict.

With the Russians effectively controlling Georgia's main naval base of Poti, Moscow also dispatched the Moskva missile cruiser and two smaller craft on "peacekeeping" duties at the port of Sukhumi on the coast of Abkhazia, the breakaway region that the Kremlin recognised as independent yesterday.

The Americans, wary of escalating an already fraught situation, cancelled the scheduled docking in Poti of the US Coast Guard vessel, the Dallas, and instead sent it to the southern Georgian-controlled port of Batumi, 200km (124 miles) from the Russian ships, where it delivered humanitarian aid.

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League wants to disband team for being 8-0

Kid sues over swing & a dis

BY RAYMOND CARLSON in New Haven and CORKY SIEMASZKO in New York
DAILY NEWS WRITERS

Updated Wednesday, August 27th 2008, 11:10 AM

Healey/AP

Jericho Scott's 40 mph fastball is too fast, according to the Youth Baseball League of New Haven, for the young fireballer to continue pitching in the league.

Scott, 9, was banned from pitching after his team went 8-0 and was on its way to the playoffs. 
Galisewski for News

Scott, 9, was banned from pitching after his team went 8-0 and was on its way to the playoffs.

Pint-sized pitching phenom Jericho Scott sued a Connecticut little league yesterday after they barred him - and his 40 mph fastball.

"They won't let me pitch," Jericho, who turns 10 today, told The Daily News. "No one's gotten a base hit on me."

Jericho's lawyer said his teammates are also joining in the suit, because the Youth Baseball League of New Haven wants to disband their team.

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Taking aim at Goliath

 Last Updated: August 21. 2008 10:18PM UAE / August 21. 2008 6:18PM GMT

Joseph Lieberman addresses the audience at "A Night to Honor Israel", the capstone event of the Third Annual Washington-Israel Summit. Courtesy 5W Public Relations

A new ‘pro-peace’ group hopes to break the monopoly within Washington’s powerful Israel lobby. But do they stand a chance? Justin Vogt reports.


One evening late last month, in a cavernous banquet hall in downtown Washington’s convention centre, the words of the prophet Isaiah graced every available surface. Printed on leaflets, emblazoned on banners, projected onto the walls: “For Zion’s sake I will not remain silent, for Jerusalem’s sake I will not remain quiet.”

From the prodigious cheering, whooping, and Lord-praising that filled the air, it was plain to see that a customarily literal understanding of those lines had taken hold of the five thousand evangelical Christians who had travelled to attend “A Night to Honor Israel”, the capstone gala of the Third Annual Washington-Israel Summit.

The summit is the work of Christians United for Israel (CUFI), an organisation founded in 2006 and led by Pastor John Hagee of San Antonio, Texas. CUFI’s mission is to ensure that Congress and the executive branch reject any peace agreement that involves Israeli territorial concessions. According to Hagee, a Biblical literalist, “any nation that divides the land of Israel will come under the severe judgment of God.” In Hagee’s view, “God has promised to bless the man or nation that blesses the Chosen People,” and Hagee has blessed the chosen people with millions of dollars in donations to aliyah organisations that encourage and assist Jewish immigration to Israel.

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New Evidence Contradicts Official Explanation for U.S. Spy Satellite Shoot-Down

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Newly released documents show that officials knew a satellite falling towards Earth posed no threat

Posted August 26, 2008

When the Pentagon ordered a Navy ship to shoot down a crippled U.S. spy satellite last February, it claimed the operation was necessary to prevent a harmful fuel from being dispersed in the atmosphere. At the time, critics charged that the Bush administration was using the toxic fuel as an excuse to demonstrate missile-defense and antisatellite capabilities.

Now, there is new evidence that the critics were very likely right.

Astrophysicist Yousaf Butt obtained U.S. government documents showing that NASA's own analysis concluded that the satellite's fuel tank was expected to burn up completely during re-entry—even though NASA probably overestimated the tank's chances of survival. "Despite its optimistic oversimplifications, the released study indicates that the tank would certainly have demised high up in the atmosphere," Butt, a staff scientist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, writes in an article for the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists.

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Israeli released from arrest after Gaza Strip protest

Wed Aug 27, 12:20 PM ET

Police on Wednesday released an Israeli they held overnight for joining international activists who sailed to the Gaza Strip in defiance of Israel's blockade of the Hamas-ruled territory.

US-born Jeff Halper, who was detained when he walked across the Erez border crossing between Gaza and Israel on Tuesday, told AFP he was freed on a 2,000 shekel (570 dollar) bond.

Halper said he was accused of violating a military order that generally bans Israelis from entering Gaza, which has been ruled since June 2007 by Hamas, a Palestinian Islamist group pledged to Israel's destruction.

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US Massacres Afghan Kids

Robert Dreyfuss Wed Aug 27, 11:03 AM ET

The Nation -- So how, exactly, did the United States come to slaughter nearly a hundred Afghans, two-thirds of whom were children aged three months to sixteen years, while they slept? And what does it mean?

US officials say they're investigating, while staunchly maintaining that the raid killed twenty-five "militants." But Afghan officials, local residents, and the United Nations are counting scores of bodies, and it is feared that many more might be buried udner the rubble. (It's not unusual for American planes to bomb civilian gatherings and wedding parties in Afghanistan, but the many dead this time may represent the highest single toll in any atrocity since the start of the war.)

What happened? The Post, happily carrying water for the Bush administration, quotes a US official -- who provides zero evidence for his claim -- saying that the Taliban deliberately fed bogus intelligence to the United States: 

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USDA Gift to Monsanto

ISIS Press Release 26/08/08 

The US Department of Agriculture’s give-away insurance rates for GM crops risk bankrupting the public coffers. Prof. Joe Cummins


The Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC) is part of the Risk Management Agency (RMA) that serves under the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture), a Federal Executive Department (or Cabinet Department).The USDA-FCIC safeguards the economic stability of agriculture through a system of crop insurance and provides the means for research in devising and establishing such insurance. It is managed by a Board of Directors, subject to the general supervision of the Secretary of Agriculture.

On 12 September 2007, the FCIC Board of Directors approved a Biotech Yield Endorsement (BYE) pilot programme submitted under section 523(d) of the Federal Crop Insurance Act. The result is that farmers growing Monsanto’s genetically modified (GM) maize receives crop insurance at a greatly reduced cost of between 20 and 70 percent.

The BYE programme was crafted by the Monsanto Corporation and its first beneficiary is limited to its GM maize. This insurance bonanza is intended for farmers planting Monsanto’s GM maize that has Bt genes against corn borer and root worm stacked with a gene for tolerance to Round-up herbicide. The FCIC Board of Directors, at its 14 August 2008 meeting, approved additional seed technologies for premium rate reduction for producers planting certain corn hybrid varieties; i.e., those containing Bt genes for corn borer and rootworm stacked with genes for tolerance to herbicides such as glyphosate and glufosinate. The companies benefiting from the largesse of the USDA give-away insurance include besides Monsanto, Dow, Syngenta and Pioneer Hi-Bred [1, 2]. 

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PALESTINIANS HAVE A RIGHT TO THEIR OWN WATERS

FREE GAZA ANNOUNCEMENT Date : 08-27-2008

(GAZA CITY, 27 August 2008) - It was standing-room-only in Gaza City studios today as the Free Gaza Movement held a press conference to announce the departure of the SS Free Gaza and SS Liberty, and to reaffirm that 12-14 Palestinians, who have previously been denied exit visas by Israel, will be traveling to Cyprus on the two boats. Some of those leaving are students, with vaild visas or dual citizenship who have been accepted to universities abroad. Additionally, one Palestinian professor will finally be able to go back to teaching in Europe, and one young Palestinian woman will finally be reunited with her husband.

Since the organizers of the Free Gaza Movement will not be entering Israeli territorial waters, and since they will request inspection from the Gaza Port Authority before they depart as well as from Cypriot authorities when they arrive in Cyprus, they expect no interference on the part of the Israeli authorities when they leave Gaza. By Israel’s own admission, it has no authority to inspect the boats or the passengers when they leave Gaza.

With the collapse of the Israeli blockade, the Free Gaza Movement will quickly return to Gaza with another delegation, and invites the United Nations, Arab League and international community to organize similar human rights and humanitarian efforts.

The SS Free Gaza and SS Liberty arrived in Gaza early Saturday evening despite threats that the Israeli government would use force to prevent the nonviolent human rights workers from reaching Gaza. Since arriving, both boats have accompanied Palestinian fishermen out to sea in order to prevent Israeli warships from firing on the Palestinians as they fish, as has happened regularly in the past. Several of the Free Gaza international human rights workers will remain in Gaza after their boats leave in order to do human rights monitoring.

Dr. Vaggelis Pissias, one of the organizers of the Free Gaza Movement, stated that: “We do not accept that Israel can stop these boats. Palestinians have the same rights as all other peoples. Why is it that the only people in the Mediterranean without access to their own waters are the Palestinians?”

###

For more information, please contact:
(Gaza) Paul Larudee: +972 598 765 370
(Cyprus) Osama Qashoo: +357 97 793 595 / osamaqashoo@gmail.com
(Jerusalem) Angela Godfrey-Goldstein: +972 547 366 393 / angela@icahd.org 

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Canadian gov't protects Chinese mafia and spies

One man's China crusade

Donna Jacobs
 

The Ottawa Citizen

Monday, August 25, 2008

For Canadian diplomat Brian McAdam, it wasn't that he had

uncovered the lucrative sale of Canadian visas during his posting at Canada's Hong Kong consulate.

Both Canadian and Chinese consular staff, he says, were selling visas to members of the Chinese mafia and Communist China's intelligence service. The price, he heard, ranged from $10,000 to $100,000 per visa.

It wasn't that reports he sent to his bosses in Canada -- details on murderers, money launderers, smugglers and spies trying to enter Canada -- were met with silence or mostly destroyed. 

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Blaze sweeps through massive Ukraine military arms dump

Related
Ukraine tightens restrictions on Russia’s Black Sea Fleet


Blaze sweeps through military depot in east Ukraine
- 2 

21:52 | 27/ 08/ 2008

(Adds details in paragraph 3)

KIEV, August 27 (RIA Novosti) - A fire at a military depot in eastern Ukraine on Wednesday spread to an ammunition dump and set off a series of explosions, an emergencies official reported. 

***

Local authorities said the explosions at the 500-hectare site made it impossible to attempt to extinguish the fire, which could continue for up to three days.

The Ukrainian Defense Ministry said in a statement that all personnel had been evacuated and no casualties had been reported. 

***

The ministry also said that the fire at the depot, which stored some 95,000 metric tons of ammunition, was caused by forest fires in the Kharkov Region. 

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AP KIEV, Ukraine: Artillery shells and other ammunition at a storage site in Ukraine exploded after a forest fire spread to the facility, prompting an ...
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An ammunition dump was on fire near a town in the east Ukrainian region of Kharkiv today and some military personnel were evacuated from the area, ...
Fire strikes Ukraine ammunition dump-ministries
Reuters AlertNet, UK - 5 hours ago
KIEV, Aug 27 (Reuters) - An ammunition dump is on fire in the east Ukrainian region of Kharkiv and some military personnel are being evacuated from the area ...
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New Orleans considers evacuating ahead of Gustav

New Orleans mulls evacuation as Gustav looms

By Kathy Finn1 hour, 55 minutes ago

Three years after Hurricane Katrina slammed into the Louisiana coast, New Orleans residents on Wednesday again confronted the prospect of an evacuation as Tropical Storm Gustav loomed.

Not since Katrina struck on August 29, 2005, have residents faced a forced departure from their homes and businesses as many still struggle to rebuild their lives in a city famed for its jazz clubs and Mardi Gras festival.

Storm levees broke under the onslaught of Katrina, flooding 80 percent of New Orleans and killing almost 1,500 people in the city and along the Gulf of Mexico coast. The hurricane caused $125 billion in wind and flood damage.

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NEWSWIRE: AUGUST 27, 2008 - CRIMES AND CORRUPTION OF THE NEW WORLD ORDER NEWS

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27th 

08:15 am:
Five arrested in alleged plot to kill British Prime Minister
08:20 am: VA Hospital Released Vet Who Refused To Be Guinea Pig: VA Secretary Apologizes
08:26 am: Dennis Kucinich at DNC: "Wake Up America!"
08:33 am: Joe Lieberman: `Time for Israel to Act` Against Iran
08:35 am: Thiraqe Democratic Party platform sticks closely to the pro-Israel lobby's line
08:38 am: Media Blackout: Bush has quietly sent the largest armada into the Persian Gulf since the Iraq war
08:41 am: Running for War President at Any Cost
08:44 am: Larry Flynt: Joe Scarborough had an affair with his intern and then killed her
08:46 am: Video: Cop bashes DNC protestor then arrests her for talking to the media
08:48 am: Foreign Lobbyists and the Making of US Policy
08:53 am: Pelosi Heckled Everywhere She Goes In Denver
08:57 am: The Future of Death at the Pentagon
08:59 am: The Hideous Horror of the Biden Selection
09:06 am: The Two Great Financial Mysteries of Our Time: Missing Money and Collateral Fraud
09:07 am: Diversionary tactics or simple coincidence?
09:16 am: Why have candidates made no mention of financial crisis?
09:17 am: Taliban Gain New Foothold in Afghan City
09:22 am: McCain and Obama: Pawns of the Global Elite
09:30 am: U.S. Soldiers Executed Iraqis, Statements Say
09:32 am: Obama's anti-Iraq war stance wiped out by choosing hawk Biden
09:37 am: Novak: Avoiding a Joe Lieberman Disaster
09:42 am: Colombia : A Case Study in Failed U.S. Intervention
09:50 am: How dangerous a McCain presidency would be
09:54 am: Obama Sought Earmarks For Biden Son's Clients
10:00 am: Police Seize Journalists Notes About RNC Protest Plans
10:04 am: Gulf Coasters: Time to Leave
10:14 am: 9/11 Truthers march in Denver - 1 comment
10:24 am:
Food riots erupt in India as floods ravage villages
10:34 am: Sen. Stevens wins Alaska primary despite fraud indictments
10:35 am: Ohio GOP illegally funneled $500,000 to Blackwell
10:39 am: A New Breed Of Hackers Tracks Online Acts of War
10:44 am: Iraq vets take to the streets to protest the war
10:47 am: McCain, Obama, and the Money Men
10:53 am: Ron Paul's welcome to Minneapolis RNC
11:16 am: Obama edits Kucinich's,'They're asking for another four years. In a just world, they'd get 10 to 20'
11:26 am: John McCain's Million Dollar Parking Lot
11:40 am: America Against The World
11:44 am: The "Good Germans" at the Democratic Convention
11:53 am: McCain In A Nutshell: Philanderer, War Pimp, Bush Policy Clone, and Neocon Liar
11:58 am: Baghdad: Back to reality
12:20 pm: The Housing Bubble Villains Deny Responsibility
12:21 pm: The Real Rate of U.S. Inflation Is Now 13%
12:27 pm: Video; Matthews and Olbermann Rumble
12:30 pm: Thai PM's compound stormed as anti-government protests grow
01:09 pm: McCain held a campaign event, touting a song about 'screwing', with an audience of teens
01:15 pm: The Land of the Silent and the Home of the Fearful
01:19 pm: 'Wake up, America' : Transcript of Dennis Kucinich's War Cry
01:38 pm: See a clip of Madonna's McCain-Hitler video
01:41 pm: Indian police issued 'shoot on sight' orders
01:44 pm: A new 9/11 clue
01:55 pm: Israel to buy US warship capable of launching multiple nuclear missiles
02:02 pm: Gaza: UN expert welcomes landing of ships carrying human rights activists
02:08 pm: ABC Reporter Arrested in Denver Taking Pictures of Senators, Big Donors
02:19 pm: US and Russian warships line up in dispute over Georgia
02:25 pm: League wants to disband team for being 8-0
02:27 pm: Taking aim at Goliath
02:35 pm: New Evidence Contradicts Official Explanation for U.S. Spy Satellite Shoot-Down
02:39 pm: Israeli released from arrest after Gaza Strip protest
02:41 pm: US Massacres Afghan Kids
02:49 pm: USDA Gift to Monsanto
02:59 pm: PALESTINIANS HAVE A RIGHT TO THEIR OWN WATERS
03:03 pm: Canadian gov't protects Chinese mafia and spies
03:19 pm: Blaze sweeps through massive Ukraine military arms dump
03:30 pm: New Orleans considers evacuating ahead of Gustav