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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Conservative Liberals' LiveJournal:

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Friday, April 6th, 2007
1:08 pm
[gregorysparr]
With a keyboard on loan from God, I am the Independent Blogger of the Office of the Independent Blogger. Allow me to introduce you to my site if you haven't heard of it before. I do hope you visit and stay -- add it to a Feed, bookmark it.

My latest post is a satire of Mitt Romney, who is more Elmer Fudd than John Wayne, more Michael Dukakis than George H.W. Bush. It's a look at his -- and his state's -- Looney Toon Politics.

Earlier today, I wrote about Disney recognizing gay relationships, which is good news, and Florida law forbidding people from feeding homeless people, which makes even a sane man wish himself Libertarian!

A couple of days ago I looked at Newt Gingrich's comments about bilingual education and the whole ugly matter of textbooks being censored or neglecting portions of history.

For those of you interested in Congressional politics, I looked at portions of the Democratic agenda and outline the potential pitfalls and my own opinions on these ideas. A small excerpt, in response to Price's warning of the price Democrats might pay for going too far with certain things: "I’ll buy that. If the Democrats, say, pass a bill legalizing gay marriage and pledge to give money to terrorists, they’d be homosexual Ronald Reagans — and out of work come 2008." And then I took a serious look at their agenda. The Democratic Agenda.

Here I chide Bush's chief policy strategist in 2004 for now saying Bush is wrong. (Of course he's wrong -- my argument is that Dowd is not someone to appreciate in any sense of the term because his whole behavior suggests he's an idiot.)

Here, at OkayStupid, I Got It! we've got a look at Online Politics and the recent announcement that Barack Obama raised more money than Hillary did...on the Internet, and the dishonest, ridiculous manner the whole situation was covered in by the media and on the Internets. (And here we've got a deep apology to Barack Obama's intern...who I told that I was a Republican because I can't possibly donate to his campaign on principal or prudence.)</a> (And here, on a final note on the matter, we've got a better look at the media's coverage of Obama/Clinton and a casual look at billionaires v. government when it comes to newspapers.)

A short post here, pithy, that would be longer in summary than whole!

Small post here, too, about Thompson's Presidential announcement. An excerpt:

I didn’t know that the Department of Health and Human Services was a launchpad for Presidential ambitions, but I suppose it is now with Tommy Thompson’s announcement that he’s running for President. I, for one, am not sure what to make of it. He’s angling himself as a reliable Conservative but that’s what Senator Brownback is in the race for. Perhaps he’ll catch fire if Brownback’s big mouth catches up to him, but otherwise I don’t think he’s got much of a chance to make waves.

Of course, there are hundreds of posts beyond that, and I update daily. I'd like to think I have a good idea what I'm talking about and an excellent sense of humor, but I'll leave that up to you, and I hope you agree to stay at the Office of the Independent Blogger, open daily for business!
Wednesday, November 8th, 2006
9:38 pm
[gregorysparr]
I am the Independent Blogger of the Office of the Independent Blogger. I took a hiatus of about a week and a half and returned to blogging today. I thought I'd refer you all to my blog, and sample it for you as well.

As I gloated in my latest political entry, I called the Rumsfeld resignation on October first and I called it for either today or January. To quote,

On October first, I wrote,

The more I read of the new Woodward book, State of Denial, the more apparent it becomes to me that Donald Rumsfeld will finally lose his job. Either the day after the Midterm Elections, or in January. That’s how George Walker works. He won’t want to give anything up to the Defeatocrats before the Elections, but I reckon Rumsfeld’s done for.

A few times I’ve waivered slightly, wondering if Bush just might really be dumb enough to allow Rumsfeld’s further presence at the Department of Defense, but I always believed that the writing was on the wall and I do believe myself a Boy who can read the President, whoever it may be. Needless to say, Rumsfeld has stepped down, and now it’s up to a new man to try and wipe Baghdad clean, something that I think is all too possible. Wars don’t end overnight and however dramatic losses may be (and Iraq’s aren’t that bad, in perspective) there is always prospect for Victory. If this new man means that George Bush is serious about changing course in Iraq (which it seems he is, in a roundabout, Bushian way, as he said today, to that same question, “Well, there’s certainly going to be new leadership at the Pentagon”) then that is nothing but a good thing.

The President’s committment, and vision, remains dubious, however. Bush has defeated Rumsfeld; now can he defeat their collective mistakes of the last four years? This is the sort of change that gives old supporters of the War new hope — cautious, tempered hope, but hope all the same.


Yes, I am, as an old but hesitant supporter of the Iraq War, take new hope from this event but I genuinely fear that it's far too little too late.

Here, on this page, titled Inevitabilities are Inevitable, I write about Tuesday's election results,

Today’s Chicago Tribune led off with the headline, Democrats’ Day! but I feel that the New York Times did the public one better when they wrote, a Loud Message for Bush. The truth is that yesterday’s election was a message to Bush rather than a reaffirmation of Liberalism, and it is also a Finally Election, meaning that it’s The One that Shouldn’t Have Gotten Away Like the Others Did. That is, 2002 should’ve been a good year to be a Democrat and 2004 was not an election that Bush should’ve won. This year was similar in circumstance and for once, the Democratic Party was able to capitalize without ruining its own prospects, and the credit should go, as far as organizing the rout, to Chuck Schumer in the Senate and Rahm Emmanuel in the House for not Shrumming up a sure thing.

All through the year I was sure of three things: the Republicans would lose seats, Rick Santorum would be handily defeated and Rod Blagojevich would be re-elected Governor of Illinois. Whether or not the Democrats would take the House was something I was leaning Yes on but wasn’t confident enough to declare because of the Mathematics of Redistricting. I’m glad, enough, that the Democrats have taken the House and might still take the Senate, but I must say I feel bad for the President.

King George can’t govern with a Republican Congress. Imagine how he’ll fail with a Divided Government!


and here, I noted the irony of the GOP defeat being fueled by Iraq.

Check it out and read it often. It's updated daily, and it's updated quite well, I must say in my unbiased and wholly independent way.
Wednesday, August 9th, 2006
4:52 pm
[gregorysparr]
Hello everyone, I am the Independent Blogger of the Office of the Independent Blogger. Before we talk politics, I've got a new section on my website that I'd like to quickly plug: the Office of the Independent Poet. You'll find a bunch of the poems I've written on there, and it's all in good fun, I say. Now, to politics, which.....aren't.

In regard to political analysis, there's this, where I talk about Joe Lieberman's recent defeat, and I stand up for him, more or less, because I believe he deserves to be stood up for. Similarly, there's this, about Hillary Clinton's chances to run/not run in 2008.

An Excerpt.Collapse )

Additionally, there is criticism of the Lebanese Invasion and the Bush Administration's treatment of it. On the subject of War, we have my thoughts here, specifically about the recent statements made by Generals in the military about Iraq. In response to an embarrassing story about George Bush's lack of knowledge preceding the Invasion, I write this: "I’d like to know what type of deal George Bush made with the Devil to give him the Presidency, but so far, Antonin Scalia won’t answer my phone calls, and William Rehnquist is dead!"

You can read the criticisms here, as well as a look at the Ukraine's recent politics. I love Eastern Europe.
Here, we have a look at Cuba and War Profiteers, and here we have one of my favorite posts, an entry looking at the "inevitability" of War with Iran, in which I look at past "inevitable conflicts." It's a good read, but then again, I believe everything on my site is, as, excuse my lack of humility, I believe that my blog is the best under-the-radar look at politics online. While I'm sure there's disagreement with that notion, my blog is very good, and I'm proud of it.

Finally, on an International and more traditionally Liberal note, there's this: Cold as Ice, where we have a post about the savage beating of Seals, as well as a silly anecdote about an old project of mine involving Seal E., seal claps and Arctic Ice City. Given that we're talking about ice, let's talk about global warming.

Read through, and bookmark it, please!
Saturday, May 13th, 2006
5:56 pm
[gregorysparr]
I am, as you undoubtedly already know, the Independent Blogger of the Office of the Independent Blogger, independent in the same sense that Ken Starr was meaning "not very independent" indeed. I blog with a keyboard on loan from God, and here we go.

My latest post, and the first I'll direct you to, is Apples and Oranges, where the subject turns from the polling of the President to Iran's wacky letter, with a stop in front of the political fights of the week (Howard Dean v. some critics, Frist v. critics, Boehner v. critics, and Muffin Man v. Baker) before closing with the price of butter in Langley.

Not bad, eh?

In my next post, we talk politics, thus leading me to title the post, "Talking Politics." Reverse Federalism and State's Rights are discussed, along with the inherent seriousness of an Al Gore candidacy, followed by some points about John Kerry and Hillary Clinton.

On a personal level, I have been criticized by many Liberal Democrats for two things: my support of the War and Iraq, and my timid opposition to the NSA's wiretapping. Before, I used to condemn the program but I didn't go so far as to call it an abuse of power. In light of recent revelations, however, I don't think there's a way to deny that George Bush is Richard Nixon Reloaded. A preview:

Richard Nixon Reloaded.Collapse )

The day before that, I'd labeled President Bush Jimmy Carter With Rabies, and I think it's fair to stand by that. In that post, I discuss his human rights record and a few impressive notes, but then we get to the CIA.

My view of the CIA, currently, is that it is the victim of an Honor Killing of sorts. Yes, I'm willing to say that Bush is attempting to kill the CIA for "honor."

Afterward, you can look here for an analysis of the UN and the global poker games being played, including my first note on the Iranian Letter to Bush. My thoughts on it at the time?

A few more poker matches are left to talk about. The first involves Iran. First, Blair today said that any suggestion of “nuking Iran” is “absurd.” It is. I’m proud of him for saying that, as it’ll provide some level of sanity to the discourse. Next, on Iran, their President has written Bush a letter in what they’re labeling an attempt to push forward talks. The Iranians say they’ll publicly release it when Bush receives it. Here’s to hoping they knew to put enough stamps on and, you know, write it in English.

To close, here there's talk of the spooky shenanigans going on in the world and at the UN, this post about the men in power who are dropping like cash at an Abramoff meeting.

If you'd be so kind, check out the site and if you enjoy it (I don't see how you couldn't) then do do me a favor and forward links to it to your friends or make a post in your own blogs. I'd surely return the favor, if asked.
Tuesday, April 25th, 2006
12:23 pm
[gregorysparr]
I am the Independent Blogger of the Office of the Independent Blogger, and I have a variety of posts to highlight from my blog.

First we talk about Dinosaurs, Awards and Politics, specifically relating to Ted Kennedy, Bipartisanship, unauthorized leaking and Richard Nixon. An excerpt? "Pat Buchanan is out calling any leak of classified information treasonous, and bemoaning the granting of a Pulitzer Prize to the woman who ran the article on secret CIA prisons. In other news, he still thinks Richard Nixon the greatest President since Caligula."

Strength in Numbers, where we talk about the military backlash against Rumsfeld as well as the effect of sagging poll numbers. The closing line, "As everyone knows, strength is something that can be found in numbers, but not always. Hundred million dollar lawsuits don’t bring strength to Maury Povich much like thirty two percent approval ratings don’t help the average President, but George Bush isn’t the average President. Charges of incompetence and lack of evidence serve as spinach to Bush’s popeye, bubba, and he wouldn’t have it any other way."

Next we talk about Cursed Terms, specifically the Second Term Curse,</a> Karl Rove's clipping, the Phone Jamming plot that's starting to become Bush's Watergate, and a ripping of Bush for his label as "the freedom President." An excerpt: "Even a few months ago, I’d have never imagined that this sort of phone-jamming incident would be occurring in today’s Washington, but I shouldn’t have given Bush that much credit, I guess. What’s the difference between Karl Rove and Chuck Colson? One of them claims to have reformed himself, while the other wants to firebomb Iran!" If you know your 1960s history, then you know Chuck Colson is notorious for wanting to firebomb the Brookings institute. More on the Watergate-sequel can be found here, along with some notes on Brent Scowcroft.

Here we have a pithy post about gas prices.

Next up is Carnal Congress about the oversexed Katherine Harris and the nature of Republican government today. Excerpt: "I am aware that this post is heavier with sexual entendres than Harris’ face is with makeup, but that’s okay. When you’re dealing with a carnal Congress that loves screwing people over, it’s all right to be explicit. Besides, I’m only making a point as to the nature of the Republicans we’re dealing with — people who pretend to be puritans but cuddle on the floor of the House. How do Republicans get away with this? By promising to outlaw sex toys in South Carolina. Maybe that’s Karl Rove’s next platform to run on? Or maybe it’s because we’ve got people with goals such as those listed above that our country’s wallowing in so many problems?"

Here we look at politics as a game of survival, and specifically talk about Hillary Clinton and the 2008 elections, Iraq's Prime Minister, Rick Santorum and Karl Rove.

Finally, there's Iran and Global Warming, including notes on Al Gore.

To close, we have Brokeback Washington about the Bush White House, and it's a nifty satire, if I do say so myself.
Wednesday, April 5th, 2006
7:39 pm
[gregorysparr]
Hi everyone. I'm Gregory Pratt, the Independent Blogger from The Office of the Independent Blogger. Since Christmas, my website was on a hiatus due to a variety of small issues but now it's back, and so am I. It's back for good, and in that regard, so, too, am I.

I'm still "Independent" in the same sense that Ken Starr was. Which means "Not Very Independent" indeed. I blog from the Left side of the Political Spectrum, but I flirt with Conservatism on Iraq, and maybe one or two much smaller things. Which means that my wisecrack about being as Independent as Ken Starr is me Kidding on the Square -- kidding, but meaning it to a point. Or maybe I really am Independent like Starr, who, while a Right Wing Hatchet Man of the Worst Kind, also happens to do noble work against the Death Penalty.

I share his independence, if we look at it that way, to a point. But I don't hunt after the President's penis like he does. No sir. Truth be told, some people have told me that I flirt with Conservatism, and I like to say back, "I don't. I tease Conservates." Jokes aside, I'm quite fond of my blog, both because I try to interject humor into the issues of today and because I love government. And so allow me to pique your prurient interest with a few titillating articles I've got up. First we've got the Tax Code Samba, similar to the Texas Two Step in that you'll never see me doing it. You see, I'm not much of a dancer. Or a fighter, for that matter. I play baseball instead.

My favorite post of the week is (Democratic) Party Like It's 1999 about the Clintons, DeLay, Al Gore and the future of Congress, 2008 and a brief mention of Larry Flynt and The Gingrich who Shut Down the Government.

Then there's "Gobble Gorba," an article refuting the recent statements of Mikhail Gorbachev who has found the time to sneak out of his grave and praise Vladimir Putin while tackling America. The premise of it is that Gorbachev is a turkey. A noble concept, to be sure.

With the demise of Tom DeLay dominating the news this week, here's my take on the failed exterminator. I find it deliciously ironic that the gas man poisoned himself in his haste to wipe out his enemies.

Next we talk about a stupid article and Savings. There's no further precursor to that.

In the next picture, I Policy Wonk about Isolationism, the Policy Wonk Chief of Staff, and the CIA.

Finally, I write about Incessant Bothers in Government and Society.

That's not all on the blog, just the more recent posts.

So, yes. Go visit the Office of the Independent Blogger, independent in the same sense that Ken Starr was. Enjoy yourselves.
Wednesday, December 21st, 2005
7:21 pm
[gregorysparr]
Today, to my school came Bernadine Dohrn. She was the leader of the Weather Underground, the 1960s Communist group that planned to overthrow the government, set off bombs in the Pentagon and the US Capitol Building, and raised hell. The Dohrn of today is a different woman, calmer, less dogmatic and willing to engage in a dialogue. Our class questioned her, with me easily taking the lead role, and her answers were candid and worth reading, for sure. Here it is, my write-up of all that occurred.
Wednesday, December 14th, 2005
8:46 pm
[gregorysparr]
I'm Greg Pratt, the Chief of the Office of the Independent Blogger. The headline of my site reads, "Independent in the same sense that Ken Starr was which means not very Independent indeed." For almost all of the time that I've had this website, since the Spring, that has been a sarcastic joke. Now, as we approach tomorrow's elections in Iraq, I have found myself to be Bipartisan by Iraq. Check it out and, in the meantime, here's two paragraphs that I'm quite proud of:

Read more...Collapse )

If I were less capable of spelling, our current path on the matter of Iran would elicit just as much support as Iraq does from me but it doesn't. When you've caught fire in a chemist's lab, you don't stop drop and roll: you shower yourself in the corner of the room. It's the same with Iran. Give it a read through -- you'll never believe how ridiculous some Conservative ideas are for dealing with the Mullahs. Want a hint? "Leave the Nukes, Take Out The Mullahs." Brilliant, if only it would work.

Ever have the government ban smoking in your city? I have. And have you ever been bothered by your party's reaction to an article that may be fake? I have. Ever thought that the President was being less than candid? I have, and you can read about these things here. While we're talking about a political potpourri, there's Tookie Williams, who has now been executed, and here is Me on why he's Not Redeemed At All.

Surprisingly, for a Liberal, I am not a huge fan of the 9/11 Commission. I think they're as out of order as they claim our current security measures are. So is the Congress, the Pentagon and the Law Schools who have a Case before the SCOTUS. I consider myself a candid guy. I'm honest. There's just no two ways about it as I call things like I see them and keep an open mind. Here, I write about a lack of candor, and end on this note: "Candor, on a last note, is increasingly hard to come by and al-Qaeda has none to spare. Bin Laden’s top Deputy to America: “bin Laden still alive and in charge.” More like, “Either hiding like a scalded dog or dead in the mountains.”

On December Seventh, Republicans Pearl Harbored Al Gore, accusing him of having given Russia permission to sell Iran nuclear weapons. For a moment, let's ignore Cheney's lobbying on behalf of an end to sanctions on Iran in the 1990s and talk about "the case against Gore," or, as I like to call it, a failed and transparent attempt to slander him and his dead father. Saddam Hussein's trial, the Right's fear of a Fight over Alito, the War on Christmas! and Rick Santorum's claim that he's helped "save Social Security" are all discussed here.

There are rumors of Chief of Staff to the President Andrew Card being fired and sent to Treasury, with Rumsfeld resigning and Lieberman taking his place. All of this would be bad for the country and wrong politically, for all parties involved, and so here is me on White House Politics. You've all heard the expression that Truth is Stranger than Fiction, correct? Well, in today's Washington Truth is Stranger Than Gingrich. That's all I'll say about that for now.

On December Third, I attended a Hillary Clinton speech in Chicago and here's my writeup. There were protesters, too, and it was an interesting day. Interesting as this post about the poisoning of our political stream. I know it's not exactly an original thought, that one, but it's still worth commenting on and I'd be mighty glad if you checked it. Finally, let me direct you here. Enjoy!

I am the Independent Blogger of the Office of the Independent Blogger.
Thursday, November 10th, 2005
9:21 pm
[politentia]
Food for thought from the World Bank:
The World Bank group is working to bring water to those who need it in third-world countries, or so they claim. Somehow, though, this objective often conflicts with their flagrant desire for profit. Well, of course they need profit. However, their method of getting water to those who needs it includes privatizing the water; in other words, they are making people in poverty pay for their water. The explanation for privatization (from an unofficial interview with the manager of advisory services at the IFC) is that if money is given to a third-world country's government for water, that government is, as often as not, likely to put the money into their swiss bank account soon after getting it, so the people who need the water don't get it at all. The World Bank is even attempting "public-private partnerships" in which people pay part of the money to get their water, and the government pays the other part. Forgive me for asking, but if the people who need the water can't pay the reduced price, how does that help either the World Bank Group or the third-world country?
Sunday, November 6th, 2005
2:56 pm
[gregorysparr]
At The Office of the Independent Blogger I make it a point to address the most important, pressing issues of the day. I make it a point to find things that others aren't discussing, and I do my best to provide insight and interesting commentary. If anyone would care to add me as a result of it, just do so and let me know so I can add you back.

President George W. Bush needs to grow a pair. Of White Sox. Using the Chicago White Sox as my model, I have written about how the President could solve his problems and, to frame his current predicament, I basically ask: What does George Bush want to be -- the Houston Astros, or the White Sox? It's an interesting approach, and I think you'll enjoy it, particularly if you enjoy baseball.

Little known to most people, Kofi Annan and the United Nations would like to get their paws on the Internet -- to control it. Read more about it (my first post on the subject is here).

Here, I stumbled upon various findings, each of interest. Like, let's take one of those findings: A Pat Buchanan article that begins with this: "“The Third Reich is the best example,” and launches into a story about Hitler’s 100% legal chancellery." That's not the only interesting thing, of course, but that's what I'm trying to hook you with. ;)

Now, there's a lesson to be learned from Mike Brown's recently released emails, and that's that FEMA is only skin-deep.

Brent Scowcroft, George H.W. Bush's National Security Advisor, has come out in opposition to George W. Bush's policies and has become a mini-hero to liberals everywhere. Here, I argue that the Left should say No to Scowcroft.

The SCOTUS nomination by George W. Bush last week shows that he's feeling Alito Trigger Happy. Very cute play of words, I think. It's also noteworthy as it contains a bit of commentary on that, as well as a link to the best article about Nuclear Weapons I've ever read: An expose exposing the fact that suitcase nukes do not exist.

Finally, The Minority Has Struck Back against the Republicans in the Senate by shutting it down, and, in maybe my most feisty and combative post, I write about the riots going on in France and the fact that they expose great problems with the Radical Left's approach to terrorism, particularly France's.

That's all for now. Please visit The Office of the Independent Blogger. I promise you'll enjoy your time there!
Saturday, October 29th, 2005
6:46 pm
[politentia]
Morale Boost
In case nobody has noticed, the press has been having a field day with Libby's indictment and Harriet Miers, turning every incident that sheds a bad light on the administration into proof of a term-long radical agenda of Bush's. Bush's approval ratings are lower than they have ever been. So is American pride. Vindicating our president and his administration for mistakes which they should not have made but which now are in the past is useless. A lack of motivation for moving our country forward could prove more fatal than a corrupt administration in the White House has ever been; because that is what all of the negative press on Bush is: a lack of motivation to take the fate of our country into our own hands. While we blame our president for the world's problems, we perpetuate those problems in failing to take action. There is a reason this generation has been called "generation why". The American people need a serious morale boost to show them that they CAN change the world when they unite under the American flag. I am not talking about a protest against the Bush administration. That would further lower morale. What I am talking about is the political involvement from every American citizen that is key; because if the most powerful people in the world who have the right to free speech choose not to use that right in a proactive way, the world will fall silent.
Tuesday, October 25th, 2005
7:06 pm
[politentia]
Cheney Plan Exempts CIA From Bill Barring Abuse of Detainees

By R. Jeffrey Smith and Josh White
Washington Post Staff Writers
Tuesday, October 25, 2005; Page A01

The Bush administration has proposed exempting employees of the Central Intelligence Agency from a legislative measure endorsed earlier this month by 90 members of the Senate that would bar cruel and degrading treatment of any prisoners in U.S. custody.

The proposal, which two sources said Vice President Cheney handed last Thursday to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) in the company of CIA Director Porter J. Goss, states that the measure barring inhumane treatment shall not apply to counterterrorism operations conducted abroad or to operations conducted by "an element of the United States government" other than the Defense Department.


Although most detainees in U.S. custody in the war on terrorism are held by the U.S. military, the CIA is said by former intelligence officials and others to be holding several dozen detainees of particular intelligence interest at locations overseas -- including senior al Qaeda figures Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and Abu Zubaida.

Cheney's proposal is drafted in such a way that the exemption from the rule barring ill treatment could require a presidential finding that "such operations are vital to the protection of the United States or its citizens from terrorist attack." But the precise applicability of this section is not clear, and none of those involved in last week's discussions would discuss it openly yesterday.

McCain, the principal sponsor of the legislation, rejected the proposed exemption at the meeting with Cheney, according to a government source who spoke without authorization and on the condition of anonymity. McCain spokeswoman Eileen McMenamin declined to comment. But the exemption has been assailed by human rights experts critical of the administration's handling of detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"This is the first time they've said explicitly that the intelligence community should be allowed to treat prisoners inhumanely," said Tom Malinowski, the Washington advocacy director for Human Rights Watch. "In the past, they've only said that the law does not forbid inhumane treatment." Now, he said, the administration is saying more concretely that it cannot be forbidden.

The provision in question -- which the Senate on Oct. 5 voted 90 to 9 to attach to its version of the pending defense appropriations bill over the administration's opposition -- essentially proscribes harsh treatment of any detainees in U.S. custody or control anywhere in the world. It was specifically drafted to close what its backers say is a loophole in the administration's policy of generally barring torture, namely its legal contention that these constraints do not apply to treatment of foreigners on foreign soil.

The House version of the appropriations bill contains no similar provision on detainee treatment, and lawmakers are to meet later this week to begin reconciling the conflict.

Cheney's meeting with McCain last week was his third attempt to persuade the lawmaker, a former prisoner of war in Vietnam, to accept a less broad legislative bar against inhumane treatment. Cheney spokeswoman Lea Anne McBride declined to comment, saying, "the vice president does not discuss private conversations that he has with members [of Congress] . . . or information that may be exchanged with members."

She added that the intent of such meetings is usually "to build consensus on legislative issues, still in the policymaking process." CIA spokeswoman Jennifer Millerwise Dyck, a former Cheney aide, said the agency does not comment on the director's meetings.

Other sources said the vice president is also still fighting a second provision of the Senate-passed legislation, which requires that detainees in Defense Department custody anywhere in the world may be subjected only to interrogation techniques approved and listed in the Army's Field Manual.

The manual is undergoing revision, and McCain has contended that this process will give the military sufficient flexibility to respond to terrorist countermeasures. But Cheney's office has argued in talking points being circulated on Capitol Hill that the manual "will be inapplicable in certain instances" because of such countermeasures.

The CIA has been implicated in a number of alleged abuses in Iraq and has been linked to at least a few cases in which detainees have died during interrogations at separate military bases throughout the country. So far, no CIA operatives have been charged in connection with the abuse, although a single CIA contract employee is on trial for involvement in the death of an Afghanistan detainee, and sources have indicated that a grand jury may be looking at other allegations involving the CIA.

A report by the CIA inspector general's office on the agency's role in the handling of detainees is classified. It has been shown to the Justice Department and briefed only to a few lawmakers. Several military investigations have already blamed the CIA for leading a program in Iraq that essentially made detainees disappear within the military's detention system with no record of their captivity -- a practice that human rights groups have said violated international laws of war.

In a particularly infamous case, a detainee at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq named Manadel Jamadi was photographed after his death, packed in ice, by military police soldiers at the facility. He allegedly died in a shower room during interrogation by CIA officers after being brought there by Navy Seal team members. A high-level CIA operative allegedly helped conceal Jamadi's death after Army officers found his body.

But the extent of the CIA's direct involvement in torture is unclear, partly because the agency has been reluctant to help the Defense Department's many investigations into abuse and has refused to provide Army officers with documents deemed relevant to the probes.

Staff writer Dana Priest contributed to this report.


Several Points:

1. I realize that the Washington Post is a "left-minded" newspaper, and as such may have put a certain spin on the above story. Facts, however, are facts.

2. The exemption of the CIA from the above bill would not be in accordance with Article Five of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and as such should not be held legitimate.

3. The United States participated in the Geneva Convention, and the exemption of the CIA from the above bill would be in direct discord with the terms dictated at the Geneva convention by the Diplomatic Conference for the Establishment of International Conventions for the Protection of Victims of War, particularly Article Three. As such, the above bill should not even have had to pass in the Senate to gain legitimacy.
Sunday, October 23rd, 2005
1:27 am
[generation_why]
Good Morning!
Good Morning!

I found this group after creating this journal and adding some of the interests/topics I hope to cover. It's really quite interesting to find this community, since I've been having a bit of a quandry trying to describe myself as someone who is conservative in some views and liberal in others.

You'll find that I lurk more than I post, but I'm hoping that there will be some good discussions here to lure me out of my hole!

~cheers~

generation_why
Saturday, October 22nd, 2005
8:57 am
[gregorysparr]
There's a bizarre saga unfolding on my blog, at the Office of the Independent Blogger. A few days ago, I made a blog entry dissecting a Jesse Jackson Jr. (Congressman from Illinois) article, and I wrote about how Jackson is considering a run for Mayor of Chicago, but is seeking out help from the Republicans, according to my source, failed Republican Congressional candidate, and nephew of a Bill Clinton Cabinet Secretary, Tony Cisneros. I wrote to reporters from the Chicago Sun-Times and Tribune, asking them to write about it as "Jesse Jackson Jr. Seeks to Unseat Daley with GOP Help" is a legitimate news story. I know that they contacted Mr. Cisneros to find out more about his conversation with me (which is detailed in that entry, or the Jackson part is) because Cisneros then commented on the entry.

Following this, I made an entry defending myself from Tony Cisneros, and rebutting him, which you can find here. You want to know more about Cisneros? Read those comments and the first thing that'll strike you is that he writes in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS. But you want to know more! you say? Well, Cisneros is off-the-wall, Bob Jones University (he went there) nuts: He preaches that the Catholic Church ordered the hit on Abraham Lincoln. Cisneros responded to that right here, and, last night, I fired back once more.

Naturally, the fact that a Republican Congressional candidate with significant influence in the Chicago GOP is having a nasty fight with a teenage blogger isn't being covered by the liberal media elite.

The most important thing to note, for me, is that my story about Jackson is accurate as my source on that, Mr. Cisneros, has never denied it or hinted at denying it.

Karl Rove is facing some serious legal problems (more on that right here) while the rest of the Republican Party is crying "persecution" in regard to Karl Rove and all their other scandals. So is Judith Miller, who just may be the biggest hack in journalism.

The Supreme Court of the United States recently declined to hear a case from Missouri about an abortion which violates State Law. Basically, a woman in jail wants an abortion and the prison is willing to take her to a clinic for it. However, state funds are not to be used for abortions in Missouri, but she doesn't have the money to pay for the bus and guards (about 300$) to take her to the clinic. She argues that she can borrow for the abortion, but not transportation, and the ACLU was all-too-willing to be her lawyer against Missouri. I think it's an abomination that the SCOTUS didn't hear the case, as this is one that should have been heard and reversed: If she wants an abortion, she has to pay for it and the transportation to it herself.

State laws mean something, okay kids?

This President, known for his secrecy, has decided to declassify the genome of the 1918 bird flu, making Americans more vulnerable to terrorist attacks. How selectively secretive of him! There are other news quickies at that link, which I'm sure you'll enjoy, so give it a go.

Finally, George Ryan of Illinois (my state), Tom DeLay of Sugarland Texas, and Saddam Hussein are all on trial while Robert Bork attacks Harriet Miers.

I am the Independent Blogger of the Office of the Independent Blogger. Check it out and enjoy it before I'm classified an enemy combatant and taken off the Internet.
Sunday, October 2nd, 2005
6:21 pm
[gregorysparr]
First thing I'd like to say is that I've cross-posted this quite vigorously.

Ding Dong the Witch is Dead, kiddies. Or, at least he's been indicted. Tom DeLay has, for those of you not quick on the uptake. In his absence, there's been quite a power struggle that you may not have heard of yet but should have. You can read more about DeLay here, as well as watch me dissect Pat Buchanan. Not that that's too much of a challenge as no one's ever accused good old Pat of being one of them ivy league geniuses.

The Governor of Illinois is a scumbag, or the former Governor is, and he's on trial now. Famous for his moratorium on the Death Penalty, Ryan is, in reality, a criminal who is set to be thrown in prison. While we may decry our system of government, justice does prevail.

Arnold Schwarzenneger is a girly man, Judith Miller, the woman who went to jail "for protecting" her "source" (that's not the real reason she refused to speak), has been let out of prison under awkward circumstances, Tom DeLay has been assured much power even without an official title and Karen Hughes needs to stay home as she's ruining our reputation abroad,. Talk about a long hyperlink!

This should be of great interest to many of you: The US and the UN are having a debate over who should control the Internet. We're not content to clash just on Iraq -- we need to argue over Cyberspace, too!

You probably don't know about these stories, but here's an article of mine on the President's bogus energy policies and the "fiscal conservative" lie of the Republican Party. Fiscal Conservatism, in the Republican Party today, is just another word for “nothing else to run on and something to pretend you believe in.”

There's a great amount of evil in Zimbabwe and stupidity in our government. What more can I say? Read it!

I am the Independent Blogger at The Office of the Independent Blogger. I'm "Independent" in the same sense that Ken Starr was. Meaning "Not Very Independent" indeed!
Thursday, August 4th, 2005
1:26 am
[baikonur]
The FairTax Community is open for discussion!
Tuesday, April 5th, 2005
8:33 am
[fonzy1959]
Gonzales to Defend Patriot Act Renewal
Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is one among many Bush supporters and aides to his Regime that condoned the torture and unethical treatment of Iraqi POW's by our United States Military!

Critics of the USA Patriot Act want the kind of real debate they were denied when the sweeping anti-terrorism law was passed 45 days after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales says he's willing to accommodate them, but he wants all the law's expiring provisions to be renewed. Gonzales was headed to Capitol Hill on Tuesday no less determined than his predecessor to defend the Patriot Act against arguments that it intrudes into people's lives. But Gonzales is employing a softer tone than John Ashcroft while making the point that the law has helped prevent another terrorist attack on U.S. soil. "The attorney general has said before that if there are suggestions that can add to the government's ability to root out terrorists and aid us in the war on terror, he will certainly work with Congress to do that," Gonzales spokesman Kevin Madden said. "He looks forward to a healthy discussion about those provisions." Gonzales was invited to testify Tuesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee and before the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday. FBI Director Robert Mueller, who also wants full reauthorization of the Patriot Act, was to join Gonzales for his Senate appearance. The Patriot Act is the post-Sept. 11 law that expanded the government's surveillance and prosecutorial powers against suspected terrorists, their associates and financiers. Most of the law is permanent, but 15 provisions will expire in December unless renewed by Congress. On the same day Gonzales was to speak to the Senate committee, Sens. Larry Craig, R-Idaho, and Dick Durbin, D-Ill., planned to reintroduce legislation designed to curb major parts of the Patriot Act that they say went too far.


"Cooler heads can now see that the Patriot Act went too far, too fast and that it must be brought back in line with the Constitution," said Gregory Nojeim, associate director of the American Civil Liberties Union's Washington legislative office. The ACLU is part of an unusual coalition of liberal and conservative groups, including the American Conservative Union, that have come together in a joint effort to lobby Congress to repeal key provisions of the Patriot Act. Among the controverisal provisions is a section permitting secret warrants for "books, records, papers, documents and other items" from businesses, hospitals and other organizations. That section is known as the "library provision" by its critics. While it does not specifically mention bookstores or libraries, critics say the government could use it to subpoena library and bookstore records and snoop into the reading habits of innocent Americans. The Bush administration has acknowledged using it only once. But the criticism has led five states and 375 communities in 43 states to pass anti-Patriot Act resolutions, the ACLU says.

Even some Republicans are concerned. Senate Judiciary Chairman Arlen Specter, R-Pa., has suggested it should be tougher for federal officials to use that provision. Gonzales already has agreed to two minor changes to the provision, and was expected to address those Tuesday, a Justice Department official said on condition of anonymity so as not to pre-empt Gonzales' testimony. He will support giving someone who receives a secret warrant under the provision the right to consult a lawyer and challenge the warrant in court, and will back slightly tightening the standard for issuing subpoenas, the official said. Neither change addresses the central concern of opponents, which is that it allows the government to seize records of people who are not suspected terrorists or spies.

Critics say the law allows the government to target certain groups, but the Justice Department counters that no Patriot Act-related civil rights abuses have been proven. Just in case, Craig and Durbin want Congress to curb both expiring and nonexpiring parts of the Patriot Act, including the expiring "library" provision and "sneak and peek" or delayed notification warrants. Those warrants — which will not expire in December — allow federal officials to search suspects' homes without telling them until later. The Justice Department said federal prosecutors have asked for 155 such warrants since 2001. Gonzales also notes that the law has been used in non-terrorism cases. For example, federal officials used it to track over the Internet a woman who ultimately confessed to strangling an 8-months-pregnant woman and cutting the fetus from her womb.

Current Mood: annoyed
Saturday, October 30th, 2004
3:08 pm
[fonzy1959]
Bush represents Christian morality?


Watch George W. Bush convey the scruples of Christ. Vote against the antichrist on November 2nd! Bush and his good ol' boys have got to go. Boot out the redneck!



Current Mood: amused
Thursday, October 28th, 2004
4:29 pm
[holyzombiejesus]
Check out my journal for a review of Fahrenheit 9/11...

sorry for x-posting
Wednesday, October 6th, 2004
8:11 am
[fonzy1959]
Edwards vs. Cheney


Cheney did well; however Edwards prevailed. Edwards held his ground, while Cheney was reaching wildly for straws. Both men did exceptionally well, and spoke eloquently. Cheney may have raised the bar a little too high for Bush in his upcoming round 2 Friday night debate against Kerry. Edwards stood his ground and did not let up. After the first hour of the debate Cheney was obviously becoming fatigued and he began to sputter as he spoke. He no longer formed a rebuttal against Edwards’s statements; he continued to repeat himself and made no valid points. In the end Edwards took this debate home and placed it over his fire mantle for everyone to enjoy.



Current Mood: chipper
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