Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Dixie Chicks Speak Out Tonight

Dixie Chicks and the idea of speaking out have almost become one in the same of late. Well tonight, they're going on Larry King Live to do an hour's worth of it.

If you've been living in a cave the last several years, the Dixie Chicks are three Texas women of fabulous talent who turned the world of country music on its collective ear about 7 years ago with a series of CDs which sold like hotcakes. Then, on a London stage in the lead-up to the Iraq war, lead singer Natalie Maines told the crowd that she was ashamed that President Bush was from Texas.

From Country Music's reaction, you'd think the Chicks had recommended child molestation. They were banned from much of radio and fans held CD burning parties. Here in the land of the free, the Chicks were drawn and quartered over having an opinion.

Three years and after the birth of five Dixie Chicks' babies later, Maines' reluctance to go to war has been verified as more wise than anything else. They're openly defiant of the Bush administration and proud of their views. As proclaimed in the title of the first release from the CD, they're "Not Ready To Make Nice." They're a darned good example of how Texas Democrats need to show the courage of their convictions. So catch their live interview tonight!

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

This Week on the Colbert Report

All Repeat Shows

Tue 5/30 -- Jonathan Alter author, The Defining Moment: FDR and the First Hundred Days

Wed 5/31 -- Kevin Phillips author, American Theocracy: The Perils and Politics of Radical Religion, Oil, and Borrowed Money in the 21st Century

Thur 6/1 -- Ted Daeschler paleontologist from the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia who discovered the "Fishopod"

This Week on the Daily Show

All Repeats

Tue 5/30 -- RAMESH PONNURU National Review editor, author, "The Party of Death"

Wed 5/31 -- HOWARD DEAN Chairman of the Democratic National Committee

Thur 6/1 -- WILLIE NELSON country music singer/songwriter

The TRUE Fish Story

I have been bothered by the president's "finest moment in office" fish story. Was it an impossible 7 1/2 pound perch or a bass? Both were reported in the press and on television. The American Prospect has the answer. To read most of the articles from the magazine, you must be a subscriber. But the true fish story is available to all of us.
Saddest of all is that the fish story is his finest moment and even that is a lie.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Iraq Veterans Against the War | Memorial Day 2006

Iraq Veterans Against the War | Memorial Day 2006: "Iraq Veterans Against the War will spend this Memorial Day in its true meaning of remembrance and not in decadent celebrations of the three-day weekend, barbeques, discount sales events, and flag-waving which has come to replace the image of fallen service members in the minds of most Americans.
We can not, will not, and must not forget those who have fallen from our ranks, and the ranks of previous generations, as we are they and they are we.
No matter what your political affiliation, views of the war or personal convictions, the sacrifice of all those who wear the uniform is undeniable. Instead of celebrating this weekend, let's take this time to reflect on what personal sacrifice really means. "

I hope you spent some time reflecting this Memorial Day. I know we did at our home, all 4 generations of us.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Well worth reading

Jim Hightower | Inside Donnie Rumsfeld's Orwellian Pentagon: "In 1928, Justice Louis Brandeis wrote that the real threat to American freedom was not from an outside assault, but from the devious manipulations of our own misguided leaders. 'The greatest dangers to liberty,' he observed, 'lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning, but without understanding.'"
While claiming that they must "secure" America for a post-9/11 world, the BushCheney zealots are taking us back to a pre-1776 world. They have been astonishingly successful in a remarkably short time, insidiously taking autocratic step after step, which a compliant Congress and the establishment media have mostly missed, ignored, minimalized or applauded. These two "institutions of vigilance" have failed us. So it is up to "We The People" to assert ourselves against this dangerous rise of authoritarianism in Bush's America.
"You can fool some of the people all the time, and those are the ones you have to concentrate on," George W said with a laugh at Washington's Gridiron dinner in 2001.

If only we'd known then that behind George's snickers, the Bushites were serious. Employing a combination of deceit, defiance, arrogance, flag-waving and secrecy, they have fooled a majority of Congress and the media into accepting the overlay of a "spook society" on our "Land of the Free." The far-reaching extent of their efforts are only now becoming clear.
The legislation has yet to pass, but intelligence watchdogs say that Bush has already implemented it by fiat - Executive Order 13388 appears to authorize the Pentagon to access domestic intelligence files. Also, the military has already created a robust collection system of its own. A new Northern Command, established in Colorado in 2001 to monitor Americans, now employs more intelligence analysts than does the Homeland Security Department. Also, the Marines launched an operation under a 2004 executive order for the "collection, retention and dissemination of information concerning U.S. persons," noting that the corps will be "increasingly required to perform domestic missions." And, during the past five years, each of the service branches has created its own domestic snooping enterprises. As Sen. Ron Wyden complained last year, "We are deputizing the military to spy on law-abiding Americans in America. This is a huge leap without even a [public] hearing."
This is an article well worth reading. Our country is going down a road that will take it far, far from the constitution. Beware.

What the San Antonio Express-News had to say

Veterans say care is slipping away

Scott Huddleston
Express-News Staff Writer

KERRVILLE — Vowing to fight as hard for fairness as they did for their nation, South Texas veterans are sounding a call for health care services in areas they say are underserved.

Amid budget cuts and revamping of the South Texas Veterans Health Care System, the Kerrville Veterans Hospital, a full-service hospital in the 1990s, has been stripped of such specialties as cardiology, endocrinology, orthopedics and dermatology.

A contract for the urologist there will expire next month, forcing veterans in a 14-county area to go to San Antonio for treatment, Alan Hill, president of the Hill Country chapter of Vietnam Veterans of America, said at a rally Saturday.

Though routine procedures such as oral surgery, colonoscopies, podiatry care and X-rays are still done in Kerrville, Hill said the hospital will close by the end of the year, "if we don't put a stop to it."

"A nursing home with a clinic is all it'll be," he told about 120 supporters outside the hospital.

Local officials of the Veterans Affairs Department say there are no plans to close the Kerrville hospital.

Hill said veterans, one of the largest voting blocs in the nation, should take nothing for granted and be ready to vote against leaders who don't support veterans.

"They're lying to us. We've got to let them know we're tired of it," he said. "Vote someone else in who'll be pro-veteran."

President Bush asked for $34.3 billion for veterans health care next year, an 11.3 percent increase. But members of Congress, including Chet Edwards, D-Waco, questioned a recent budget resolution that would cut funding by about $6 billion between 2008 and 2011.

"I do not understand, and I can tell you it didn't come from this subcommittee, why somebody, somewhere, staff or otherwise, put together a budget resolution that's on the floor today" that would cut expenses, Edwards said during an April 6 meeting of a House Appropriations subcommittee.

Rick Bolanos of El Paso, a Vietnam veteran and Democratic challenger facing U.S. Rep. Henry Bonilla, R-San Antonio, also spoke at Saturday's rally.

Though Gulf War II has cost at least 2,465 lives, compared with 58,000 in Vietnam, Bolanos said many young veterans may not have access to counselors for post-traumatic stress, believed to affect 20 percent to 25 percent of veterans of Iraq.

"What you don't realize is we've lost more than 60,000 Vietnam veterans to suicide," he said.

After the rally, Sally Tarasoff, a former Army and VA nurse from Boerne, said the system needs to be built up to provide therapy for burn victims, counseling for veterans with delayed stress symptoms and lifetime care for vets with head wounds.

"What they're doing to the veterans is disgusting," she said.

A similar rally is set for 2 p.m. today near the McAllen VA Outpatient Clinic. Although the VA is building an outpatient clinic in Harlingen and contracts with hospitals in the area to provide routine surgery, patients must travel to San Antonio for most major procedures.

Tony Roman, a Vietnam veteran and one of about 20 San Antonians at the rally, said he blames leaders in Washington.

"They're trying to pay for the war on the backs of veterans," he said.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Veterans rally

Today, in the sweltering heat and humidity of south Texas, veterans and those who support them, gathered outside the Kerrville VA. The subject of conversation? Simple. Budget cuts in the VA and how they affect yesterday's and today's veterans. Contrary to popular belief, Memorial weekend is when we remember those who served our country in the armed forces. This event was not covered by very many news media. Our elected representatives, who purport to support our troops, such as Henry Bonilla, Kay Bailey Hutchison and Gov. Rick Perry were invited to attend. Who attended? Rick Bolanos, who is running against Henry Bonilla, and a pretty young lady who identified herself as Bonilla's "communications representative." No elected official bothered to show up.
What was discussed? Restoring funding to the Kerrville VA. The men and women who get medical care from the VA must go to San Antonio for many areas of care such as dermatology, gerontology, pulmonology and oncology (cancer) because that is not available in Kerrville. A bus goes to Kerrville twice a week. Often their appointments are canceled, but the veteran won't know until he arrives in San Antonio. So, he/she must wait all day for the bus to return to Kerrville. Is this right? I don't believe it is.
Furthermore, as we daily add veterans to the system, in the Iraq war, which was started on lies, these men and women will add to the VA backlog and get crappy care. One VA nurse per 23 patients, for inpatient care. How is that quality of care? When will we, as a nation, value and honor our veterans?

Massacre story appears to be true

How ironic that these servicemen and women will probably be court martialed for their behavior. Bush put them into this hell hole, they went crazy, and now they'll have to live with what they did--forever! Thank you very much, Mr. Dips**t Prez! Once again, you have shown the depths of your ineptitude and indifference.

This administration truly sucks!

They died with their shorts on

So this is what Cindy Sheehan's and other people's children are dying for? I hate this administration with the passion of 1000 white hot suns!

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Tom DeLay Stars in a New Movie

Check out the new trailer here.

Oh yeah, in case you forgot--that picture is his mugshot!


Tonight at a local lefty's house here in Boerne (thanks, Progressive Grannie!), about 30 of our general species got together to craft positive, succinct messages to send to to help develop and frame the liberal argument for change.

The three issues which we found most compelling were Protection of the Environment, Universal Health Care, and Balancing the Budget. We also behaved like Democrats--which means we fought like cats-n-dogs--but we did so respectfully, and moved the meeting forward.

It was fun and inspiring and exactly what local politics should be. You should get involved. And those of you at the party--I'm tawkin' to you!--stay involved. We need your help.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Global warming is propaganda????

Exxon-Backed Pundit Compares Gore To Nazi Propagandist Sterling Burnett is a senior fellow at the National Center for Policy Analysis, an organization that has received over $390,000 from ExxonMobil since 1998. This afternoon on Fox, Burnett compared watching Al Gore’s movie, An Inconvenient Truth, to watching a movie by Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels to learn about Nazi Germany.
If I thought Al Gore’s movie was as you like to say, fair and balanced, I’d say, everyone should go see it. But why go see propaganda? You don’t go see Joseph Goebbels’ films to see the truth about Nazi Germany. You don’t go see Al Gore’s films to see the truth about global warming.

Can you believe this moron? I am nonplussed. WTF?????

The President's Super Secret New Border Weapon:

Thanks to a peace activist from Utopia for this:

Veterans data stolen

As noted in the news today, data on 26.5 million veterans was stolen.

Here is an interesting fact that I just learned.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2005, there were 24.5 million military veterans in the United States. I could not find the figures for the current year.

So they didn't miss too many veterans on that data base did they? Basically the records of everyone that has served in the military have been stolen.

Nice job.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Attack on Gore, more disinformation of course

ENVIRONMENT -- SCIENTIST PUSHES BACK AGAINST FALSE ADS ON GLOBAL WARMING: Last Wednesday, the Competitive Enterprise Institute -- a non-profit organization funded by ExxonMobil and other big oil companies -- launched two 60-second television ads in response to former Vice President Al Gore's new movie about global warming, An Inconvenient Truth. One of the advertisements attempts to show that the scientific evidence for global warming is in dispute, claiming a study that purportedly found the “Antarctic ice sheet is getting thicker, not thinner.” The primary author of the study used in that ad, scientist Curt Davis, recently fought back against the misleading ads. In a statement, Davis said, "These television ads are a deliberate effort to confuse and mislead the public about the global warming debate. They are selectively using only parts of my previous research to support their claims. They are not telling the entire story to the public." The reality is, there are no legitimate scientists or scientific studies that support CEI’s views on global warming, and the oil companies are using their massive profits to manipulate the

This Week on the Daily Show


Mon 5/22 -- CLARK KENT ERVIN former Inspector General, Department of Homeland Security

Tue 5/23 -- DAVID REMNICK editor of The New Yorker, author, "Reporting"

Wed 5/24 -- ERIC SHAWN FOX News correspondent, author, "The UN Exposed"

Thur 5/25 -- FRANCIS FUKUYAMA Professor of International Political Economy, author, "America at the Crossroads"

Keep up with the calendar

Hey Gang. Don't forget we have an online calendar of events that appeal to us progressives. Just click on that button below the big picture at the top of this blog. Also, if you have an event you'd like to add, you can put it on yourself! I hear there's an event on Thursday and another event on Saturday? Let's tell people about them. Thanks.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

The May Kendallian Newsletter is Now Online

See it here.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Clinton to write new book on activism

Our last legally elected president has taken up the pen again. Read about it here.

John McCain just needs to go away

He's ruined whatever chances he think he may have had to get us to vote him in as president. He's a big coward who could somehow keep the Vietnamese from breaking his spirit, but fell apart at the feet of his right-wing nut job constituency.Take a gander at his poor showing at a commencement exercise this past week.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Daily Kos: State of the Nation

Very alert blogger points this factoid out.

Daily Kos: State of the Nation: "Welcome to Iraxico!
by SusanG
Fri May 19, 2006 at 06:39:55 PM PDT
Does something sound vaguely familiar here?
President Bush's planned deployment of National Guard troops to the Mexican border would last at least two years with no clear end date, according to a Pentagon memo obtained Friday by The Associated Press.
The one-page 'initial guidance' memo to National Guard leaders in border states does not address the estimated cost of the mission or when soldiers would be deployed. But high-ranking officials in the California National Guard said they were told Friday that deployments would not begin before early June.
No clear end date? Check.
Not a clue of the final cost? Check.
Fuzzy on deployment dates? Check.
And does any of this language ring a bell?
The document described an 'end date' for the mission when the U.S. Border Patrol operation 'gains independent operational control of the (southwest border) and National Guard forces are no longer required for this mission.'

Willie Nelson's new song

Willie Nelson's new song and video, Secret Cowboys can be viewed here. It takes awhile to load but it is worth the wait.It just confirms, to me, why I love Willie.

KXAN in Austin interviewed Willie. Here are some excerpts of that interview:
Willie's latest song is about gay cowboys.

"Cowboys are frequently secretly fond of each other. What do you think all them saddles and boots was about?" Willie sings.

He's says the song has been in the closet for more than 20 years, and the movie Brokeback Mountain made it easier for the song to come out.

"It was a beautifully made movie. Ang Lee is a great director and you know the guys didn't turn me on. I saw a couple of sheep that turned me on," Willie

"I rarely think of them (gay cowboys) actually, but when I do, it's not a negative thought," Willie said.

That's especially true. His friend and road manager David Anderson came out two years ago.

"I think when he started all of us were wearing jeans and one day he showed up in a suit and tie, we looked at each other and said, 'Hmmm,'" Willie said.

"I think its time for all of us to stop taking ourselves so seriously, and it's no big secret there are gay cowboys. There have been gay rodeos for 45, 50 years. Everyone seems to be now finding out about it, which seems to make it even funnier," Willie said.

"I found out through the years they don't care whether you're straight gay or what. It doesn't really matter. It's what kind of man or woman you are. What kind of person you are," Willie said.

"That's their business. I'm an advocate for freedom, whatsoever," Willie said.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

I am beginning to like Pink more and more

Stupid girls Pink has it down pat. You go girl!

Not your soldier campaign

Watch the video then pass it on.
Do I believe Judith Miller or do I not? I am torn. You see, if I believe her it plays into my conspiracy theory thoughts that rise unbidden at the oddest times. I don't want to believe in a conspiracy theory, but it is getting harder all the time.

Former NY Times reporter Judith Miller to assert she was warned of large scale attack before 9/11

Published: Thursday May 18, 2006

In AN ALTERNET EXCLUSIVE THURSDAY, former New York Times reporter Judy Miller tells Rory O'Connor and William Scott Malone about the story she'll regret for the rest of her life -- the fact that an anonymous White House source told her in July 2001 that an NSA intelligence report predicted a large al Qaeda attack, possibly on the continental United States, RAW STORY has learned.
“I think everybody knew that an attack was coming -- everyone who followed this. But you know you can only 'cry wolf' within a newspaper... before people start saying there he goes -- or there she goes -- again!" Miller says in an interview.

"I remember the weekend before July 4, 2001 in particular, because for some reason the people who were worried about Al Qaeda believed that was the weekend that there was going to be an attack on the US or on major American target somewhere," Miller recounts. "It was going to be a large, well-coordinated attack."

Two months later -- on September 11 -- ALTERNET.ORG says Miller and her editor at the Times, Stephen Engelberg, both remembered and regretted the story they "didn't do."

"There was always a lot going on at the White House, so to a certain extent, there was that kind of 'Cry wolf' problem," Miller says. "But I got the sense that part of the reason that I was being told of what was going on was that the people in counter terrorism were trying to get the word to the President or the senior officials through the press, because they were not able to get listened to themselves."

Save the internet petition, please sign and send the link to friends

That Brand Spankin' New Map of the USA

This is an interesting map.

Given that Survey USA polls show there are only three states in the entire country which now view President Bush positively by more than 50%, the political landscape has changed dramatically. The Red State/Blue State schism which the 2004 election left us no longer exists.

Of special note: please find George W. Bush's home know the one: TEXAS. Is it red? No, in fact it's not. It's blue. That means that right here, in GW Bush's back yard, more people than not think he's doing the wrong thing.

As we gear up to head towards a November election, it's good to remember that we no longer live in a red state! And more people agree with you than with native son GW Bush.

Now here's a map I can love!

Click here!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Bonilla lies Jaime Castillo | Politics
Normally, Democrats would do cartwheels if Congressman Henry Cuellar fell on the opposite side of an issue as his Republican colleague Henry Bonilla. But the recent 217-213 vote on the GOP lobby reform package has raised questions about party loyalty for both area lawmakers. As one of only eight Democrats to support the legislation, Cuellar has renewed criticisms that he is a Democrat in name only.
"I never received any questions or concerns about lobbyists from calls to our office, e-mails or at constituent meetings," said Bonilla, who is married to a lobbyist.

Bonilla lied. I emailed Bonilla about my concerns over lobbyists, and I am sure that I was not the only one in the San Antonio area to do so. There was an internet form letter that I filled in, one of those that you recieve via email. So I figure, if it's easy to fill in those form letters, more than one person did so.
And Cuellar is a DINO, period, the end, and deserves to be voted out of office!

Choice Point 0, Randi Rhodes 1

Wednesday, May 17, 2006
by Greg Palast

I smell mendacity! The sticky-sweet Atlanta drawl of the PR flack for America's private KGB was dancing in rhetorical circles with Randi Rhodes, Air American, on her broadcast yesterday. Unfortunately for the Bush-friendly Spies-R-Us contractor, Randi also has a keen nose for the telltale scent of pure bullshit.

By "private KGB," I mean ChoicePoint, Inc., the Atlanta company that keeps over 16 billion records on Americans which it sells to the FBI, Homeland Security and, through a bit of a slip-up, identity thieves.

They are watching you because George and Dick don't have time to track everyone in America (and that would be illegal, to boot), ChoicePoint does it. Then turns over the electronic you -- cross-matched profiles of voting registration, your DNA info and who knows what else -- for a price.

Randi was on the phone to one James Lee, Marketing Director of ChoicePoint. He was trying to explain some of the good work they do for government -- and responding to the evil lies about his corporation by a reporter (me).

I was listening in from a glass booth. The Eichmann treatment was required by ChoicePoint -- they wouldn't let her interview the company if anyone else was in the room. They also warned her, her interview would be "taped" ... AND, they didn't have to add, they know where she lives -- and where she votes and a whole lot more about Randi that maybe Randi herself doesn't know. Just a friendly warning.

It seems the data guys were upset that she had me on her show on Monday to talk about my investigations of the company which I conducted for BBC-TV, for Harper's and for my new book, Armed Madhouse. [ Yeah, that's a plug: order it at ]

The company's name came up because of the Bush regime's getting caught with their hands in the data jar: spying on Americans, sucking our phone records into data bases where George and Dick can peruse them at leisure, without warrants.

ChoicePoint's the big banana in the data game, with fat no-bid contracts with Big Brother Bush's agency and the Department of Fatherland Security. (Homeland? Deutschland? Whatever.) Other governments, including Mexico, threatened ChoicePoint operatives with arrest for their use and misuse of data, but Dick and George like'm just fine. That's because ChoicePoint provides just the data that suits their needs -- not necessarily accurate, but accurate is not what is needed.

For example, ChoicePoint is the company that gave Katherine Harris and Jeb Bush the list of Florida voters, most of them Black, which were removed as "felons" before the 2000 election. The list was ridiculously inaccurate -- these were innocent citizens -- but those African-Americans lost their voting rights anyway and Jeb's brother thereby took the White House.

That's not nice, what Jeb and Katherine did -- but ChoicePoint kept silent. In return, they received a high, and highly suspect, fee for their "work."

And that's dangerous. Because, after ChoicePoint selected our president for us, our president selected them for no-bid jobs to save us from terrorists -- which they do by keeping track of us. (Odd, I thought Americans were the VICTIMS of terror -- they've made us the SUSPECTS.)

In Armed Madhouse, I reveal that one ChoicePoint executive confidentially told me the company's chairman hoped to build a national DNA database. Dracula's got nothing on these guys: they are already the biggest providers of DNA info to the FBI, they boast. They boast about it one week -- then they deny it another. This week's flavor is denial.

Back to Randi. I wasn't allowed in the room with her, so I waited in the glass booth. ChoicePoint had a huge list of complaints about my latest comment on their activities. I thought it important for the public to know how these private "data mining" companies drill into you and sell up the valuable nuggets they find to Mr. Bush's spy apparatus.

As a public service -- everyone needs a laugh once in a while -- I'm reprinting their inventive rebuttal to my report, "The Spies Who Shag Us" (for Buzzflash, May 12).

The company uses some clever rhetorical sleights of hand: "No data files or 'dossiers' exist at ChoicePoint." Now that's just darn strange for a data company.

But that's a quibble. Let's move to the out and out flaming fabrications, whoppers and what, before George Bush took office, we used to call "stinking, bald-faced lies." (Now we call it, "intelligence.")

ChoicePoint swore to Ms. Rhodes that they do not have or sell "credit" information. Yet, according to the company's own filing, among their other Big Brother products, they sell:

" history data, motor vehicle records, police records, CREDIT INFORMATION and modeling services...employment background screenings and drug testing administration services, public record searches, vital record services, credential verification, due diligence information, DNA identification services, authentication services and people and shareholder locator information searches...print fulfillment, teleservices, database and campaign management services..."

Uh, oh. They are either fibbing to the Securities and Exchange Commission (their CEO is already under investigation by the SEC) -- or they are prevaricating to Randi. They shouldn't do that, because, the lady has class -- she let ChoicePoint give their goofy alibi uninterrupted; but, lie to her, and, as my editor says, "she'll bite off a chicken's head while it's laying eggs."

So who are you toying with, Mr. ChoicePoint, the SEC or Randi?

There's more. ChoicePoint's PR apologist says it doesn't maintain credit card records, but they fail to mention that they sell "credit report headers" -- which is why the federal government just fined them a record $10 million for letting identity thieves run off with this kind of info. They sell "SSN verification" (your social security number), financial reports, education verification, reference verification, felony checks, motor vehicle records, asset location and information on criminal suspects and their neighbors and relatives. Howdy, neighbor!

Let's go back to ChoicePoint's dirty work for the Brothers Bush. ChoicePoint writes that it didn't get its corporate hands dirty in the racist purge of voters which fixed the 2000 election. That was the fault of some company called "DBT" which ChoicePoint only purchased, they claim, "after DBT's work was done for the state."

Au contraire. ChoicePoint bought DBT before the election, while the purges were in full swing. Then, right after the "election," ChoicePoint's PR mouthpieces boasted about how the company was going to cash in on its "success" (their word) in purging Florida voter rolls. Their PR flack told me at the time, "Given the outcome of our work in Florida, and with a new president in place (!), we think our services will expand across the country." But then we caught them -- and they quit elections games and moved on to saving us from Al Qaeda. Lord help us.

Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn about ChoicePoint. They're in it for the money. If they turned a blind eye to evil, if they abetted the theft of an election and kept silent to keep the money, well, that's the Fear Industry for you.

It's not what ChoicePoint sells that terrifies me, it's whom they're selling it to: a regime for whom information is a weapon and disinformation a way of life.

where is the plane?

YouTube - Judicial Watch September 11 Pentagon Video -- 2 of 2
Look very closely, back it up, watch it again and airliner is really big. I don't see an airliner at all.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

From Huffington Post Contagious Festival

West Point Grads Against The War- Laws And treaties violated by President George W

This and more on their website. All soldiers my age learned this principle, was Bush asleep? Or worse?
West Point Grads Against The War- Laws And treaties violated by President George W: "The Nuremberg Principles, which define as a crime against peace, 'planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression, or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements, or assurances, or participation in a common plan or conspiracy for accomplishment of any of the forgoing.'

Again I wonder....

US releases footage of plane hitting the Pentagon Again, I ask, where is the BIG plane? There is no airliner, just a quick white whooosh and explosion, with the object coming along the grass. A large airline plane can't do that.
So if they expect that this will silence conspiracy theorists, they have another think coming. It's a stretch of the imagination.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Could lunacy explain Bush's policies?

Wow, Molly Ivins agrees with me! Of course, Molly says much more eloquently than I can. [See my earlier at]

Truthdig - Reports - Molly Ivins: Could Lunacy Explain Bush's Policies?: "Posted on May 15, 2006
By Molly Ivins
AUSTIN, Texas�I hate to raise such an ugly possibility, but have you considered lunacy as an explanation? Craziness would make a certain amount of sense. I mean, you announce you are going to militarize the Mexican border, but you assure the president of Mexico you are not militarizing the border. You announce you are sending the National Guard, but then you assure everyone it�s not very many soldiers and just for a little while.
Militarizing the border is a totally terrible idea. Do we have a State Department? Are they sentient? How much do you want to infuriate Mexico when it�s sitting on quite a bit of oil? Bush knows what the most likely outcome of this move will be. He was governor during the political firestorm that ensued when a Marine taking part in anti-drug patrols on the border shot and killed Esequiel Hernandez, an innocent goat herder from Redford, Texas. That�s the definition of crazy�repeatedly doing the same thing and expecting a different result. "

3 Lies President Bush will tell, and what to say back

Tonight, President Bush will seize hold of our national airwaves to tell a series of lies about immigration in America.
Why do we know they will be lies?

After six years of President Bush, everyone knows that his vision for America has nothing to do with immigration--nothing to do with protecting our country, human rights or a fair economy---but consists entirely of two, reckless and illegal invasions:
1. The invasion of Iraq2. The invasion of our privacy
`Improving America' for the self-declared `War President' has always meant launching a `pre-emptive' war and lawyering up against the United States Constitution. And we all know President Bush never changes his mind on those two issues--because he tells us as much, with the mindless repetition of a mechanical doll, every single day.
So, given that we all know the truth about President Bush's vision for America, what lies will he tells us tonight and what can we say back?
Lie #1: President Bush Cares About `Enforcing The Border'President Bush does not give a fig about enforcing, patrolling, guarding, closing, monitoring or otherwise thinking about American borders. The only reason he will talk about controlling the borders is to appease the racist wing of his party. Drunk with Neo-Con ideology, President Bush does not care about our borders because he does not believe that America faces any danger from our borders. Instead, he believes that America faces danger only if we are not aggressively using our military to dominate the world. What President Bush knows is that there really is no `War on Terror' that threatens our borders, but that the `War on Terror' is an political ruse designed by his advisors to win re-election and justify the ruthless his arrogant policies. But still, he will tell us, tonight, that he will dispatch the National Guard--what little there is left of it that has not been exhausted in Iraq--to `the border.'
Response: "We don't need another Great Wall of China--We need a great leader!"We do not live in ancient China where we must protect our nation from Mongol hordes by building a giant wall. This is the 21st Century! People enter America through airports, train stations, commercial truck lines, inflatable boats, and shipping containers. While President Bush's summer suntan grows darker and darker, the gates into America continue to be unguarded. Guarding our borders while we leave our ports wide open is like installing a security fence, then leaving the gate unlocked. It is useless. We don't need another great wall of China! We need a great leader.
Lie #2: There Are `Jobs Americans Will Not Do'Corporate donors to the Republican party want nothing more than for President Bush to convince the country that we need illegal immigrant workers for the `jobs Americans will not do.' This is a huge lie. There are no jobs Americans will not do. There are only fair wages that U.S. employers will not pay, living benefits that U.S. employers are desperate to avoid, obscene profits that U.S. employers insist on pocketing, and working class Americans that U.S. employers look up on with contempt. U.S. employers do not just hire illegal immigrant labor--they recruit it!! They seek out that illegal labor force because it is the only way they can break the Fair Labor Standards laws that govern the minimum wage and benefits for workers in this country.
Response: "Jobs Americans Do Not Want?? Prove it or Go To Prison!"When unemployed Americans show up to collect their benefits, they must first prove they have been looking for work. The same standard should be applied to U.S. employers who recruit illegal workers. Want to hire immigrant employees? Great! But first prove that you sought out and were turned down by a legal work force. Prove it or go to prison.
Lie #3: Bush will `Hold To Account' CorporationsPresident Bush is going to puff out his chest tonight and say he will `hold to account' businesses that violate labor laws by hiring illegal workers. Yeah right. This is a joke. President Bush has still not `held to account' his cabinet members who left Americans stranded to die in a city flooded by a hurricane. President Bush has still not `held to account' his cabinet members who have trapped us in a useless war that now leaves us with only losing options. President Bush has still not `held to account' those members of his own advisory staff who have been indicted for criminal charges. President Bush will never hold corporations to account because he believes that a strong America requires--yes `requires'--that all wealth be accumulated in the hands of a few corporate moguls.
Response: "Start by holding your own staff to account for breaking the law!"Americans no longer believe that President Bush cares at all about enforcing the law. They see, as a result of his behavior, that he breaks the law then finds lawyers and loyal party members to excuse him. If he wants to participate in--let alone be a leader of--a national discussion about enforcing labor laws, he first has to earn his way back into the public trust.
Or...So there you have. 3 Lies the Bush will tell tonight, and three possible responses.
Of course, if these responses are too difficult to remember, not to worry. Just walk over to the nearest open window and scream, "ENOUGH!!"
"ENOUGH!!" is always a good response to anything President Bush says.
© 2006 Jeffrey Feldman
Posted by Jeffrey Feldman on May 15, 2006 at 09:54 AM Permalink

This Week on the Daily Show

Mon 5/15 -- HOWARD DEAN Chairman of the Democratic National Committee

Tue 5/16 -- DENIS LEARY comedian / actor, "Rescue Me"

Wed 5/17 -- RAMESH PONNURU National Review editor, author, "The Party of Death"

Thur 5/18 -- WILLIE NELSON country music singer/songwriter

Friday, May 12, 2006

A retired CIA agent and guest blogger writes....

The chief concern we should have, of course, about the newly revealed NSA spying program is that it is being done, in violation of existing laws, without clear authorization or oversight.

But we should also be concerned with this as just another stupid idea that is not likely to result in any useful intelligence. The following is from a blog discussing whether or not this approach is likely to find anything of value.

NSA Sweep "Waste of Time," Analyst Says

It'd be one thing if the NSA's massive sweep of our phone records was actually helping catch terrorists. But what if it's not working at all? A leading practitioner of the kind of analysis the NSA is supposedly performing in this surveillance program says that "it's a waste of time, a waste of resources. And it lets the real terrorists run free."

Re-reading the USA Today piece, one paragraph jumped out:

This kind of data collection from phone companies is not uncommon; it's been done before, though never on this large a scale, the official said. The data are used for 'social network analysis,' the official said, meaning to study how terrorist networks contact each other and how they are tied together.

So I called Valdis Krebs, who's considered by many to be the leading authority on social network analysis -- the art and science of finding the important connections in a seemingly-impenetrable mass of data. His analysis of the social network surrounding the 9/11 hijackers is a classic in the field.

Here's what Krebs had to say about the newly-revealed NSA program that aims to track "every call ever made": "If you're looking for a needle, making the haystack bigger is counterintuitive. It just doesn't make sense."

"Certain people are more suspicious than others," he adds. They make frequent trips back-and-forth to Afghanistan, for instance. "So you start with them. And you work two steps out. If none of those people are connected, you don't have a cell. Because if one was there, you'd find some clustering. You don't have to collect all the data in the world to do that."

The right thing to do is to look for the best haystack, not the biggest haystack. We knew exactly which haystack to look at in the year 2000 [before the 9/11 attacks]. We just didn't do it...

The worst part -- the thing that's most disappointing to me -- is that this is not the right way to do this. It's a waste of time, a waste of resources. And it lets the real terrorists run free.

The plot thickens according to NSA whistle blower

NSA Whistleblower To Expose More Unlawful Activity: People Are Going To Be Shocked: CongressDaily reports that former NSA staffer Russell Tice will testify to the Senate Armed Services Committee next week that not only do employees at the agency believe the activities they are being asked to perform are unlawful, but that what has been disclosed so far is only the tip of the iceberg. Tice will tell Congress that former NSA head Gen. Michael Hayden, Bush's nominee to be the next CIA director, oversaw more illegal activity that has yet to be disclosed:
A former intelligence officer for the National Security Agency said Thursday he plans to tell Senate staffers next week that unlawful activity occurred at the agency under the supervision of Gen. Michael Hayden beyond what has been publicly reported, while hinting that it might have involved the illegal use of space-based satellites and systems to spy on U.S. citizens."
All I can say is, holy cow! Bush might as well stroll over to the National Archives and light the constitution with a match. Or like burning the Reichstadt?

Bill Maher Tonight!

Bill Maher welcomes singer/songwriter John Legend, national security expert Richard Clarke, and academic Cornel West. Plus, via satellite, fmr. Sec. of State Madeleine Albright, and TV news show host John Gibson.

Americans should tap into their inner Patrick Henry

Crawford's List the blog by Craig Crawford had this post today:

Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Death
"Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!"
-- Patrick Henry, 1775

Americans must now tap into their inner Patrick Henry. A radical among revolutionaries who opposed the U.S. Constitution for giving government too much power, the fiery Virginian would probably set himself on fire today. The government spies on people, lies about it, and, when caught in the act, refuses to give security clearances to the investigators.

If we believe the dubious claim that terrorist threats justify sweeping surveillance without any checks and balances then, in a different context, we have truly come to the ultimate choice that Henry posed: Are we prepared to die for liberty? Not in battle against foreign occupiers, but as a possible consequence of preventing our own government from spying on us? My answer is Yes: If losing freedom be the price of safety, then safety be damned.

Bush Now at 29%

New poll ratings have our president at 29%, according to a new Harris poll
Is it wrong for me to feel so happy?

Thursday, May 11, 2006

NSA has your phone records; 'trust us' isn't good enough - NSA has your phone records; 'trust us' isn't good enough: "Even assuming that the Bush administration's motives are pure, and that this program merely looks for patterns of calls that could reveal terror networks, it raises a number of troubling questions:
Is it legal? Bush insists it is, but that's questionable. The 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act requires a court order to gather a person's current phone records. A 1934 law requires phone companies to protect customers' privacy. And the Fourth Amendment forbids 'unreasonable searches and seizures.'
Is it useful? Taken as a whole, such a database is of dubious utility. U.S. intelligence-gathering agencies are already suffering from an abundance of raw information and a dearth of good intelligence. Looking for suspicious patterns among billions of phone numbers seems like the ultimate search for a needle in a haystack.
Is it foolproof? These types of databases invariably have errors. The federal terrorist 'watch list,' which is used to screen airline passengers, has ensnared a number of innocent travelers � among them Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., and a 23-month-old toddler � whose names are similar to, or the same as, suspects on the list. Once you're mistakenly targeted, the error can be nearly impossible to fix and your life can be turned upside down. "
Exactly. As a person who was born in a country that is know to harbor "terrorists" I can be branded a persona non grata at any moment. Never mind the fact that my parents are US citizens and my family lived in the US before the Revolutionary War (which some fought in). What B.S.! Daily B.S. from the Bush crime family.

The Rise of Fascism in America

The Rise of Fascism in America: "Fascism in America won�t come with jackboots, book burnings, mass rallies, and fevered harangues, nor will it come with black helicopters or tanks on the street. It won�t come like a storm�but as a break in the weather, that sudden change of season you might feel when the wind shifts on an October evening: Everything is the same, but everything has changed. Something has gone, departed from the world, and a new reality will have taken its place. All the old forms will still be there: legislatures, elections, campaigns�plenty of bread and circuses. But �consent of the governed� will no longer apply; actual control of the state will have passed to a small and privileged group who rule for the benefit of their wealthy peers and corporate patrons.
To be sure, there will be factional conflicts among the elite, and a degree of debate will be permitted; but no one outside the privileged circle will be allowed to influence state policy. Dissidents will be marginalized�usually by �the people� themselves. Deprived of historical knowledge by a thoroughly impoverished educational system designed to produce complacent consumers, left ignorant of current events by a corporate media devoted solely to profit, many will internalize the force-fed values of the ruling elite, and act accordingly. There will be little need for overt methods of control. "
Add to this the NSA tapping of our phones and all the other ways Bush and Co. have broken with constitutional law, and you get a very frightening picture of where our country is going. And yes NSA, I am fully ready to be taken to an internment camp for dissidents. I am NOT scared. My ancestors fought in the Revolutionary War in the Massachusetts militia, so I will carry on the tradition of fighting for freedom.

Kinky is one step closer to being on the ballot

Read about it here.

Steven Colbert new American hero

Don Hazen's editorial on the AlterNet web site discusses why Steven Colbert's had such a massive impact. His impact was further advanced by the fact that we can see video on the web, so we can see something the news media won't show us.
In that vein, don't forget that the internet as we know it is now up for grabs as our "illustrious" leaders in Congress "discuss" the issue...or more likely, are told what to do by the big phone companies. It may be that blogs, internet banking, internet shopping, etc will be a thing of the past, unless you have the $$ to pay big bucks to an ISP. Screw the middle class is the motto of our Congress, if and when they actually come to work. I am thinking they should just go home for the remainder of the year and continue to do nothing because what they do is too hurtful to the average American.

Big brother is listening

Hayden: The Spook in Your Phone By Robert Scheer

"Michael V. Hayden, nominated by President Bush to head the CIA, is the man responsible for the most extensive attack ever on the privacy of U.S. citizens. As USA Today reveals, it was during the six years that Hayden ran the ultra-secret National Security Agency that the Feds gained access to the phone calling records of most Americans.

By cross-checking those phone record against other readily available databases, the Feds are now in a position to profile the intimate daily lives of the citizenry--providing a tool that no Big Brother could ever have dreamed of obtaining before the advent of modern telecommunications technology. Yet this assault on our freedom was never disclosed to the public, debated by our elected representatives or tested by the courts.

Most disturbing is the revelation by USA Today that leading members of Congress-- Democrats as well as Republicans--had been told of this ghastly assault on our freedom but did nothing to thwart it. They must now be held accountable. So too General Hayden, who obviously should not be trusted with running the CIA spy agency after having engineered such massive spying on the American public."

Big brother, the 2 minutes hate, the memory hole, lack of privacy...Orwell was right. Add to that the 14 defining characteristic of fascism: powerful and continuing nationalism (think flag lapel pins and car magnets); disdain for the recognition of human rights (think Guantanamo); identification of enemies/scapegoats as a unifying cause (think terrorists and immigrants); supremacy of the miiltary (think big pentagon budget), rampant sexism (think anti-choice, anti-contraception), controlled mass media (think propaganda on the TV); obsession with national security (think Bush and Co.); religion and government are entertwined (think faith based group federal funding); corporate power is protected (no kidding); labor power suppressed (think fear of joining a union); obsession with crime and punishment (think people willing to forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism); rampant cronyism and corruption (think Katrina); fraudulent elections (think Florida and Ohio)....and does this add up to the country I grew up in and served in the military? Hardly! This is a place I do not recognize. A place going somewhere very, very scary.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

A Portrait of Failure

Want to see what an utter lack of talent looks like?
Want to see who thinks catching a fish is his finest accomplishment as president?
Ever wonder what The Peter Principle looks like on a graph? By all means, go to the graph. Take a look.

There will come a time when this period will be viewed as a dark era. Remember this time. Document it. I'm hoping your grandkids won't believe it when you tell them just how bad it got.

The A**hole Movie. Check it out!

I may be the only person who didn't know about this little film. Jackie told me that Randi Rhodes tells her listeners to look up "asshole" on google, and this is what you get! Good stuff.

Great column defending Colbert....

As you may have discovered on your own, the mainstream media has chosen to ignore Colbert's brilliant performance at the White House correspondents' dinner, but we all know that he is one of the very few people who not only had the cajones, but the opportunity to let the president know just how corrupt we all think he and his buddies are. Go to this column, which tells the mainstream media just how cowardly they really are.

Open letter to Richard Cohen

Wiiliam Rivers Pitt's editorial in Truthout is an open letter to Richard Cohen. Mr. Pitt discusses Cohen's angst over the nasty emails he recieved regarding his opinion of Colbert's performance at the White House Correspondents Dinner. He discusses the reasons why many Americans are angry, and why this anger is not the same as the anger during the Vietnam war.

George W. Bush and his pals used September 11th against the American people, used perhaps the most horrific day in our collective history, deliberately and with intent, to foster a war of choice that has killed untold tens of thousands of human beings and basically bankrupted our country. They lied about the threat posed by Iraq. They destroyed the career of a CIA agent who was tasked to keep an eye on Iran's nuclear ambitions, and did so to exact petty political revenge against a critic. They tortured people, and spied on American civilians. You cannot fathom anger arising from this?

Take the time to read the entire open letter. William Rivers Pitt eloquently explains our anger.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Veterans rally for healthcare

Veterans healthcare is not negotiable, let's make that clear!
Meet: 1130 to 1200 hrs May 27th in Boerne
to caravan to Kerrville.

Where to meet in Boerne: The new shopping center parking lot across from Wal-mart in Boerne where Benjamin Moore paints and Sarika's are located. We will then caravan to Kerrville to the VA Hospital.

Contact person:
Boerne-- Sally Tarasoff 210-454-7059 (cell) email:

From Rick Bolanos, Congressional Candidate:

We would appreciate your energetic support and participation to create the BIGGEST-EVER gathering of veterans, and Citizens who support our troops, on Saturday the 27th of May 2006, 2:00PM at the credit union across the street from Kerrville VA Medical Center in Kerrville.
On Sunday the 28th of May, 2006 at 2:00PM we will gather in front of The VA Clinic, in McAllen.
Representatives/contacts from Sonora, Junction, Del Rio, Uvalde, Eagle Pass, Corpus Christi, Gonzalez, Seguin, New Braunfels and anybody else from other communities who can join in, please email us and let us know the place and time for veterans and civilian supporters in your respective area to meet. The more the merrier, and please bring your Colors, banners and posters. (³VETERANS¹ HEALTH CARE IS NOT NEGOTIABLE² ­ ³VETERANS¹ FUNDING SHOULD BE MANDATORY, NOT DISCRETIONARY² - ³OUR SERVICE WAS MANDATORY, SO SHOULD FUNDING FOR OUR HEALTH CARE²

An inconvenient truth, global warming

An Inconvenient Truth
Al Gore hosts this movie. The trailer is available and worth watching. This movie will arrive in selected theaters May 24. Let's hope it comes to San Antonio. So far it is playing in Austin, Houston and Dallas in June.

I do wonder if enough people see this film will global warming seem more real to them or will they continue to believe the cowed US scientists who bow to Bush and Co. and say there is no such thing as global warming? Heaven help us all. I can't see my neighbors giving up their gas guzzlers any time soon, short of being struck by a bolt of lightning.

Monday, May 08, 2006

We need a strong candidate in 2008, one with steel balls

BuzzFlash Mailbag May 8, 2006: "For a long time Democrats have needed a hatchet man, someone who will play rough and slit throats when the need arises. I think they've got one in Rahm Emanuel, congressman from Illinois and a former policy advisor to President Clinton. Along with Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, they head the party's efforts to retake both houses in the Fall. Emmanuel is a shark. The smell of blood in the water invigorates him and ignites his lust to crush opponents into dust. I believe Hunter Thompson would have liked him.
This is just what the Democratic party needs right now. We don't need 'Bush lite' or people who tack to the left or the center or the right based on the morning polls. Emanuel is a guy who plays for keeps. He'll f**k with you and beat you down. But best of all, he wants to win."

I don't know a lot about Rahm Emanuel, but I think I'll learn more. What we need is someone who will not back down, period. However, we also need all of us, the bloggers and those in the netroots to push away from the keyboard and get out there and put the rubber to the road, and support our candidates despite what the Democratic party bigwigs say. They helped kill what Howard Dean was doing, let's not let them get the upper hand again.

The Best Little Whorehouse in Washington

The Best Little Whorehouse in Washington
As usual, Molly Ivins has her hand on the pulse in D.C.
I don’t care what anyone smoked 20 years ago, I approve of those who boogie ‘til they puke, and I don’t care who anyone in politics is screwing in private, as long as they’re not screwing the public.

On other hand, if you expect me to pass up a scandal involving poker, hookers and the Watergate building with crooked defense contractors and the No. 3 guy at the CIA, named Dusty Foggo (Dusty Foggo?! Be still my heart), you expect too much. Any journalist who claims Hookergate is not a legitimate scandal is dead—has been for some time and needs to be unplugged. In addition to sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll, Hookergate is rife with public interest questions, misfeasance, malfeasance and non-feasance, and many splendid moral points for the children. Recommended for Sunday school use, grades seven and above.

A floating poker game, prostitutes, limo rides, defense lobbyists, elected officials, what more could anyone want? It is like the "good old days" in Washington politics. Back when we heard great gossip at parties in D.C., met interesting people, and our phone was tapped. When the Congressman or was it Senator dumped his mistress in a fountain in DC? Back before the so-called Christians had a grip on the White House.

Funny how those with great religious fervor also have great secret sexual issues, and act them out. These individuals are just asking to be blackmailed...and some of these folks lead our country. Intelligence remains an oxymoron.

This Week on the Daily Show

Mon 5/8 -- DAVID REMNICK editor of The New Yorker, author, "Reporting"

Tue 5/9 -- ERIC SHAWN FOX News correspondent, author, "The UN Exposed"

Wed 5/10 -- BILLY CONNOLLY actor/comedian

Thur 5/11 -- FRANCIS FUKUYAMA Professor of International Political Economy, author, "America at the Crossroads"

Bush as Victim, Colbert as Bully? NOT!

The Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen's May 5th column calling Stephen Colbert's performance at the White House Correspondents' Dinner 'rude' angered me, but I often disagree with Cohen. Then I read Robert Parry's Colbert & the Courtier Press at Parry explains my anger to me: I've watched and listened to the press corps give Bush a pass for five years of deception, but Colbert called them mere stenographers. The journalists gave Bush and his imposter a hearty laugh, but were afraid to be shown laughing at a very funny, biting Colbert.
Parry ends his article with a wonderful sentence: "Only the likes of Richard Cohen could see George W. Bush as the victim and Stephen Colbert as the bully."

Sunday, May 07, 2006

An excellent reason not to join the military

AlterNet: WireTap: An Excellent Reason Not to Join the Military
I found this very disturbing. Realize that I was a 36 year old mother of 2 when I joined the US Army in peacetime, 1987. I had a very gentile basic training as an officer and a nurse. There was no drill Sgt. there was no horrible experience. The highlight was a stint at Camp Bullis north of San Antonio where we were introduced to camping Army style which was posher than my Dad's idea of camping. After all, I did not have to haul 5 gallon Gerry cans of water for 1/2 mile or so, chop wood, pee in the woods, or suffer at all. We learned about sound, noise and light discipline and hiked to the top of a hill, as we hummed oh we oh, we oh oh (from the Wizard of Oz) and saw a spectacular shooting star. The next day it was back to the Omni hotel and the swimming pool, and a weekend off on the San Antonio River Walk on St. Patrick's Day....were we had too much beer, got a bit rowdy and were asked to leave the Hyatt Hotel. I was carded at Durty Nellies, where the young man howled very loudly that I was old enough to be his mother.
Yep, that was the old days. Now, women are afraid to even walk to the bathroom. We were smart enough in the olden days to never go anywhere alone, because we were taught by our mothers and the Army to never go anywhere alone. Now, young women in the military don't have that luxury. It's disgusting what they must go through, and without any support for improved conditions from the upper echelons in the military. Rumsfeld should be screaming about this, but he is strangely silent, unless confronted by my idol, Ray McGovern.
Ladies...stay home and don't join, it's not worth it.

Try this, it's better than a magnet

This was prompted by an email I recieved showing a bogus US Army patch and those gut wrenching pictures of soldiers that just begs for support of our troops.
This is what I sent in return.....

As a US Army Veteran, I was offended by the doctored patch in the photo. However, I know it was sent out of concern for the plight of our soldiers.
So,thought I would send information on ways to help our military in a seriously real way. It is better than magnets on your car or emails with soldiers' pictures. Give your time and your money. Sacrifice for those who have sacrificed for you. I suggest you donate your dollars to:


Operation Helmet which buys helmet liners for Marines, the US government buys liners for the US Army but not the Marines. The liners help prevent closed head injuries from bomb blasts (IED's)

Fisher House where wounded soldiers and their families stay for treatment of their long term war injuries

Food for Marines who are going hungry
collected by the Greenwood Credit Union in Warwick, R.I.

Intrepid Fallne Heroes Fund

Or donate your time to your local VA medical center.

If a unit in your area has been deployed, call them and ask where you can send care packages. We have sent boxes and boxes of stuff, all of which was well received. I may be an activist and march for peace, but I put my money where my mouth is, and support the troops actively. I hope you will consider doing the same.

In addition, if you know of others who are unaware of how to support the troops, please send these links on to them.

Iraqi Women Living in Nightmare

One of the worst lies of this administration is that the Iraqi people are much better off than they were under Saddam. The truth is not in our papers, but in the Guardian, which is available online. Natasha Walter has written an article about an Iraqi film-maker who is producing a movie about "things that go on every day, but are not being seen by the rest of the world".
She says,"No one sees what we are going through. All Iraqis are psychologically traumatised by what is happening. I have seen an eight-year old child who has involuntary tremors, whenever she hears an aeroplane or sees soldiers. I have seen families displaced. I have seen women forced into prostitution because of the poverty of their families."
The film shows not only the horrors of war, but also the power religious fundamentalism now has over their lives.
The film was shown on British television tonight, but I'm sure our networks won't be showing it. If we're lucky we can catch it on the web, or possibly on Sundance, but don't hold your breath.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Precinct Chairs Sworn In

At last night's Kendall County Democratic Club meeting, Kendall County's precinct chairs were sworn in. If I were a better reporter I could tell you with all confidence who they all are, but sadly, that's not the case! Please, if someone could help me with this and leave me a comment?.....

John Weir was also sworn in as our newest Democratic Party Chairman. Congrats to him. We wish the best to outgoing chair Bill King.

In the very top picture, City Council candidate Jacques DuBose shares his philosophy with one of our clubbers. You can find out more about him on his website.

In Memory Of....

The Kendall County Area Democratic Women have donated two more books to the Boerne Public Library, in memory of two fine women who have passed away.

The President's House by Margaret Truman was donated in memory of Ann Nolan,

and Enrique's Journey was given in memory of Dr. Maria Ranzau.

Click on the pictures of the books to learn more about them.

Bill Maher Tonight!

From the HBO Website:

Bill Maher welcomes actor Bradley Whitford, Fmr. PM of Canada Kim Campbell, and Fmr. Gov. James Gilmore. Plus, via satellite, Gen. Wesley Clark, and Sen. Mel Martinez.

Join this week's Real Time community Hot Topic debate: Immigration.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

KENT STATE 1970 Lest we forget

I was a student at TCU in Ft. Worth at this time. On the day after the shooting, we lined University Blvd., hand in hand, to commemorate the dead. We must remember this event. This could happen again. I know that when I was in Crawford,Texas with Cindy Sheehan on the first day of her protest, a secret service agent leaned out his window and snarled....someone could get hurt. So beware, but continue to speak truth to power.
KENT STATE 1970: : "At 11 a.m., about 200 students gathered on the Commons. Earlier that morning, state and local officials had met in Kent. Some officials had assumed that Gov. Rhodes had declared Martial Law to be in effect--but he had not. In fact, martial law was not officially declared until May 5. Nevertheless, the National Guard resolved to disperse any assembly.
As noon approached, the size of the crowd increased to 1,500. Some were merely spectators, while others had gathered specifically to protest the invasion of Cambodia and the continued presence of the National Guard on the campus. Upon orders of Ohio's Assistant Adjutant General Robert Canterbury, an army jeep was driven in front of the assembled students. The students were told by means of a bullhorn to disperse immediately. Students responded with jeers and chants.
When the students refused to disperse, Gen. Canterbury ordered the guardsmen to disperse them. Approximately 116 men, equipped with loaded M-1 rifles and tear gas, formed a skirmish line towards the students. Aware of bayonet injuries of the previous evening, students immediately ran away from the attacking National Guardsmen. Retreating up Blanket Hill, some students lobbed tear gas canisters back at the advancing troops, and one straggler was attacked with clubs.
The Guard, after clearing the Commons, marched over the crest of the hill, firing tear gas and scattering the students into a wider area. The Guard then continued marching down the hill and onto a practice football field. For approximately 10 minutes, the guard stayed in this position. During this time, tear gas canisters were thrown back and forth from the Guard's position to a small group of students n the Prentice Hall parking lot, about"

The Enzi bill, bad for US healthcare consumers

Families USA website lists the reasons why this bill is bad for America. Again, it is the dismantleing of healthcare for all but the very rich in this country. Add to that the information in JAMA this month, which notes that British National Healthcare has better outcomes that the US style of healthcare. As a nurse, I am not surprised, but I am sure the you, the consumers of healthcare are very surprised to hear that since we have been brainwashed to believe that we do better healthcare than anyone else. Call or email your representative today.

Benefits Texans will lose:
Texas Alcoholism Treatment
Bone Density Screening
Colorectal Screening
Diabetic Supplies/Education
Drug Abuse Treatment
Emergency Services
Home Health Care
Infertility Treatment
Mammography Screening
Mental Health (General) Mental Health (Parity)
Metabolic Disorders (PKU)
Minimum Mastectomy Stay
Off-Label Drug Use
Prostate Cancer Screening
Rehabilitation Services
TMJ Disorders
Well-Child Care
Brain Injury

and from AARP:
CEO Bill Novelli said the following about the Health Insurance Marketplace Modernization and Affordability Act:

"While it is a laudable goal to make health insurance more accessible and affordable for small businesses, the Health Insurance Marketplace Modernization and Affordability Act, which the US Senate is expected to consider in early May, does so by placing older workers at significant risk.

In its current form, this legislation would drive health care premiums higher for many employers and employees, put critical benefits—like cancer screening—out of reach for many Americans, and create a disincentive for employers to hire or retain older workers.

The elimination of discriminatory restrictions has been tried before with disastrous consequences. When a state law was passed in 2003, employers in New Hampshire would not hire older or ill workers for fear that their health insurance rates would increase.

Ray McGovern confronts Rumsfeld

Rumsfeld called out in Atlanta by Ray McGovern. Now I met Ray in Crawford, and he is a very well informed kind of guy, and I think he performed a bit of national service today. The odd thing to me is that in so many places it is said that he was ejected. However, if you watch the CNN video, Ray just walked to his seat and sat down. I found that interesting.
However the best part of the whole thing was watching Rumsfeld stumble over his words and then try to obfuscate...because he had no clue who he was dealing with. I am sure Rumsfeld thought he was just dealing with some schumck hippie person, instead of the very well informed Ray McGovern.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Veterans to be shafted again

Veterans are again, about to get shafted. This information came from the Texas Democratic Vets, a group I belong to and support.

Lt. Gen. Terry Scott (U.S. Army, ret.), who is Chairman of theVeterans' Disability Benefits Commission (VDBC), wants to study vetswho get Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) as well as VA compensation. The goal is an offset (reduction) in payments to veterans.The VDBC's charter doesn't allow this, so, in an unconstitutionalmove, he asked Congress to interpret their own law, to give himpermission to do this. Go here VA Watchdog to read more.

John Courage is having an open house on Sunday

Courage for Congress!



Sunday, May 7th

1:00pm to 5:00pm

8107 Broadway

For info call 210-602-4213

You may be about to lose insurance benefits

The US Congress, in an obvious bow to HMO's and insurance corporations, have developed bill, S. 1955 Health Insurance Marketplace Modernization and affordable Act of 2005, which would allow health insurers to bypass state requirements for minimum benefits. That means your HMO could potentially eliminate key benefits in your coverage, including cancer screenings, contraception, emergency services, mental health care and diabetic supplies, should this bill be passed. Don't you love the Orwellian name of the bill? What's bad is good.

And how much did the CEO of Blue Cross/Blue Shield make this year? I could be wrong, but it was in the neighborhood of 42 million dollars. We all know that for a corporation to make profits this big, someone is being short-changed, and it's us.

What concerns me is the fact that Americans are being sold down the river for profit. All other industrialized nations have a form of national healthcare. It is an investment in their country's future.

According to an article in the New York Times "Americans 55 and over are much sicker than their British counterparts even though the United States spends more than twice as much per person on health care as Britain, researchers said Tuesday. The article, in the issue of JAMA to be published Wednesday, said "middle-aged to older U.S. residents have higher rates of diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, heart attack, stroke, lung disease and cancer than their English counterparts."

Gee, do you think that healthcare for everyone just might be a good idea? I do. But the NY Times article attempted to spin the information, saying "But, the press release said, the study found that "differences in socioeconomic groups between the two countries were so great that those in the top education and income level in the U.S. had similar rates of diabetes and heart disease as those in the bottom education and income level in England."

My interpretation would be that the wealthy in the US get poor healthcare across the board, with the poor being totally left out. If 45 million Americans have no healthcare, then how can we actually compile statistics, except to extrapolate from hospital admissions? We all know that you have to be practically dead to be admitted to a hospital. Patients are sicker when admitted than ever before.

We need a national healthcare plan, a single payer plan. F** the insurance companies. They ration care now, although they deny it. It is very sad that we, as a nation, do not value our citizens. The poor are throwaways, and the middle class will soon be gone. We will just die off because we can't afford healthcare or medications.


Over 10,000 Served!

I just looked at our visit counter, and we've gone over the 10,000 mark! How exciting. Thanks to all our visitors who have helped keep the momentum of this blog going day after day. We hope you keep coming back, so that we have to keep writing. Hey, it's good for us!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Buzzflash editorial

This is an excellent editorial! When you add this information to the 14 signs of fascism, you come up with a scary scenario.
BuzzFlash Editorial: From King George of 1776 to King George of 2006, It's Time Declare Our Independence from Monarchal Rule: "The Declaration of Independence states unequivocally:
'In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.'
When you read the document that was the birth certificate of this great nation, you can't help but be struck by how the Busheviks would regard it as a radical, perhaps even terrorist call to arms. "

Scott Ritter on Iran

Bush administration again looking like they want to invade Iran (see below). Today in an interview on Randi Rhodes, Dennis Kuchinich noted that more and more facts point to the fact that we already have troops in Iran. Can WWIII be far behind? Sigh.
Once more unto the breach: "The United States has already made clear its intent to introduce a draft resolution under Chapter VII of the UN charter, elevating Iran's obstinacy to the level of a clear and present danger to international peace and security, and paving the way for the imposition of stringent economic sanctions against Iran. The United States will be lobbying quite hard for such a resolution, and is looking to a meeting of the foreign ministers of the Paris group in New York on May 9 as the time and place for bringing this issue to a head. "....
If the Russians and Chinese balk over the imposition of Chapter VII-linked measures against Iran, as they have indicated they will, then the Bush administration will simply declare that the security council has become impotent and irrelevant in dealing with threats that it has itself declared to exist, and, as such, the United States, not wanting to have its own national security interests so hijacked, will have no choice but to move forward void of any security council endorsement or authorisation. This model of action directly parallels that undertaken by the US and UK regarding Iraq, and has been strongly alluded to in recent statements made by Vice-President Cheney, the US ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton, and Rice.

Another medicare disaster in the making

Another way to screw our elders, and soon ourselves. Read on---

Daily Kos: Think Medicare Pt. D is bad? Brace Yourself for the Enzi Bill
From the folks who brought you Medicare Part D(isaster), here's yet another bad idea for health care reform: the so-called Health Insurance Marketplace Modernization and Affordability Act (S.1955), known here in the Beltway as the "Enzi Bill." From the bill's intro: expand health care access and reduce costs through the creation of small business health plans and through modernization of the health insurance marketplace.

Sounds harmless enough, right? In reality, this is an extremely dangerous bill that, if passed, could jeopardize the health care of 85 million Americans. Find out why after the jump. If you can't wait to do something, a coalition of national organizations is sponsoring a national call-in day tomorrow, May 3rd. Please take a minute tomorrow to call your Senators, toll free--1-800-828-0498--and tell them to vote NO on the Enzi bill.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Hostile takeover of the healthcare industry

As a healthcare professional, I have strong feelings about the lack of healthcare today. Patients are sicker and require more care when admitted to the hospital. Matter of fact. Add to that the fact that there are fewer healthcare professionals to care for the patients. There is the usual cry of "shortage" but we must look farther into the issue. There was a shortage of nurses when I was in nursing school in 1969-1973 and the solution at that time was to hire foreign nurses. The scary part, was that some of them had fewer skills than we (junior year of college) nursing students had. The hospital where I worked in Ft. Worth at that time, was run (on the evening and night shifts) by nursing students and foreign nurses. Much of what I learned was by experience. Nursing supervisors were invaluable when we were stuck and had no clue what to do. Now, RN's take care of up to 8-35 patients, depending upon the facility. Does that make you feel safe? It shouldn't. Never go to a hospital without a significant other who will remain with you 24-7. A co-worker's care was so bad it took nurses and doctors to get things changed and to get adequate care from physicians. Be scared, be very scared. Then work for national healthcare. If you have not experienced national healthcare in a foreign country, you would be surprised. They do a great job, and the myth of rationed healthcare is just that, a myth. HMO's and insurance companies want your money and don't give a damn about your health. Your Momma gets better care through Medicare.

Lest we forget

April 28, 2006 |
A US Marine pays respects to Lance Cpl. Stephen J. Perez, of San Antonio, Texas. Perez was killed in a mortar attack on April 13, 2006, at Camp Fallujah, 40 miles west of Baghdad. The death toll of American soldiers in Iraq rose to 69 in April, the highest in five months.
(Photo: Jacob Silerberg / AP)

Whatever we do, don't forget our troops. May the Lord watch over them and give them peace.

Bush's prejudice in action

Check out Orwell's grave blog.

Immigrants march across US

Immigrants march across US: "Reports from around the country suggested many immigrants were staying away from work, despite a mixed message from immigrant-rights organizations, some of which opposed the one-day strike."

At my daughter's place of employment none of the installers came to work today. My brother-in-law, a Mexican immigrant planned to stay home and spend no money today, in solidarity with the protesters.

This Week on the Daily Show

Mon 5/1 -- Matthew Continetti
The Weekly Standard staff writer, author, "The K Street Gang"

Tue 5/2 -- Madeleine Albright
Former Secretary of State, author, "The Mighty and the Almighty"

Wed 5/3 -- Clark Kent Ervin
Former inspector general, Department of Homeland Security

Thur 5/4 -- John Malkovich
Actor, "Art School Confidential"