July 28, 2003
Poindexter and the Depths of Madness at High Levels
Death CasinoThis is sci fi that only the most bizarre and morbid minds would have ever dared to fantasize. Now the Associated Press tells us that the Pentagon is setting up a new kind of commodities market through which people can "bet on political and economic events in the Middle East including the likelihood of assassinations and terrorist attacks." If that don't beat all.
It is historical record that there were huge numbers of "put" options on United Airlines and American Airlines on September 11, bets that the company's stock values would drop suddenly. There was such an improbably high number of bets that those two airlines -- and only those two -- would have a catastrophically bad day that it indicates that the betters had some foreknowledge of the event. But some were too embarrassed to claim their profits after there was so much public attention on their shenanigans.
The stratospherically rich who pull the strings behind the scenes, don't like to have their hands tied in such an unceremonious fashion as to have to abide by such archaic customs as laws. The Bush types like to keep things simple by taking crime out of the underworld and making a public spectacle of it. Things that used to be scandalous and kept undercover -- like making massive profits off wars that you or your son or other close associate instigate, or operating concentration camps, relinquishing the right to due process of law -- are now done right out in the open. And who's complaining? Just a few of those unpatriotic belly achin' supporters of the terrorists.
Bush is buying off the religious right with "faith-based" money from the government (i.e. the taxpayers), and not being too subtle about it. At a Bush-staged event on July 16, Bush called the targets of his faithbased pitch "the social entrepreneurs of America" and he made sure they could smelll the money. "It's one thing to talk about a faith-based initiative," he drawled, "but there needs to be money in the system available for the faith-based programs in order to make it work." (See the Palm Beach Post.) Hell, churches need money too! All Bush's supporters are standing in his welfare line for their share of the booty.
That's the basic principle of the New World Order.
Now for a big laugh -- Forbes' "Seeking black votes, Bush vows more jobs." Bush will no doubt "seek Black votes" the way he did in 2000, by stealing them, by wiping them off the voter roles with bogus charges of being felons. And what is he offering? "More jobs" (!?) What a riot. Bush is on track to be the first president since Hoover to finish his term with fewer jobs than when he started. Bush never had to work; his businesses all lost money; he doesn't know the first thing about jobs. All he knows how to do is export them to third world countries so his corporate titan friends won't have to pay so much to those fussy Americans.
Ryan A. Somma, writing to Mediawhoresonline, explains how the Republicans are heisting the governorship of California:
After the Republicans spent millions of dollars rounding up signatures and strategically deadlocking Califorinia's budget until the very morning after the recall election was confirmed, they have also rigged the wording of the recall vote in a way that will potentially disenfranchise millions of California voters. The Democrats have already fought the wording of the vote in court and lost, but here is what will happen in October if it is not changed:
The vote will be a Yes/No on "Do you want Davis recalled?"
If you vote "Yes", you will then be allowed to choose from a list of candidates that includes anyone with $3500 and 65 signatures. This will be a big list.
Now let's say 55% of the voting public says "Yes", giving a majority to the recall of Gray Davis. Then let's say this "majority" goes on to vote for who they want to replace Davis like so:
54% - Tom 27% - Dick 13% - Harry 5% - Jane
Tom wins. Even though the 45% of voters who chose "No" on the recall were prevented from choosing the new governor. This is because a "No" vote on the recall will not be the same as voting FOR Gray Davis, which is the intention of a "No" vote (Voting against recalling Gray Davis is the same as a vote of confidence in him). If a "No" vote were the same as voting for Davis, the percentages would break down like so:
45% - Gray Davis 30% - Tom 15% - Dick 7% - Harry 3% - Jane
The Republicans, after buying an October California election, have now rigged that election in court so that their Second Place candidate will win. Critics have lauded the situation in California as proof that direct Democracy doesn't work, but there is nothing Democratic about what is happening there if the vote is rigged to ignore the true majority vote.
More on vote tampering from Bev Harris, see "Diebold Denies Ease of Vote Tampering -- But Denials Don't Stand Up". Condoleezza Rice may be the next head to roll over the fake Niger nuclear info that appeared in Bush State of the Union address. See US News. For a listing of notable Rice lies see Buzzflash. The New York Times reports that the 900 pages of the Congressional report on 911 that have been suppressed by the Bush administration focus primarily on the support of the Saudi kingdom for groups that may have funded Al Qaeda. 911 independent commission member Max Cleland spoke straight on Bill Moyers' "Now" about the Bush administration and government agencies stalling on getting information to the commission. Howard Dean tells Bush, "It's time for the truth."
July 30, 2003
Pentagon Terror Marketplace ScrappedSo the Pentagon's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, dropped its $8 million website for a futures market on terrorist acts.
It was dear old madman John Poindexter who was behind the plan to set up a futures market through which investors would be able to bet on the possibilities of various terrorist acts or violent political acts.
Poindexter is the best evidence yet for the argument to keep criminals in prison where they belong. As Ronald Reagan's National Security Advisor he was one of the criminals convicted in the Iran Contra scam to sell weapons to terrorists and use the profits to finance the Reagan administration's own terrorists in Nicaragua. Later the Costa Rican government accused him of complicity in a coke scam. Then Bush Sr. pardoned him and he was free to commit more outrageous crimes. He was also the "brains" behind Total Information Awareness, the system that was going to gather information on everyone and everything. The site for the Pentagon's futures market in terrorism listed possibilities for betting on when the first biological weapons attack would take place in Israel; when the King of Jordan would be overthrown; when Yassir Arafat would be assassinated. If an investor invested in a certain improbable outcome, like the ones on the website, then he would greatly benefit if the thing happened against all probability. Of course, the higher the improbability, the greater the odds, the greater the reward. If you just happened to place a bet and just happened to have the chance to influence the outcome, it would pay big to do it.
The intent of the creation of this new parlor game of death, according to the Pentagon, is to gather intelligence! To help the Pentagon predict what terrorist acts will take place. This has to be a pathetic joke, a half-hearted attempt to cover the raw fact that its real purpose is to create more ways to make money off war and violence. The many ways that already exist are not enough. Of course no one with a fifth grade education would fall for the idea that such a system would really provide reliable intelligence. If this is the way these guys think, is it any wonder the US was so pathetically open to attack on Sept. 11?
Just like on that day, I can't think they are that stupid. Yes, they could be that evil, that greedy, that callous about the lives of others. But they aren't that stupid. Of course it was to make money. And to figure out more creative ways to funnel tax money into the pockets of cronies. The website program was supposed to have cost $8 million. Eight million is a pretty sum for putting up a website. Plenty of people would like to get that account.
July 31, 2003
Bush, Cheney, Ashcroft, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, et. al. should be in jail, it's true. But John Poindexter -- he should be in the looney bin. He's completely out of his mind. Each scheme he comes up with is more outrageous than the last. The scheme to set up a futures market on terrorist activities shows how far off the deep end these clowns are. Poindexter is head of DARPA, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which gave us both Total Information Awareness and the new PAM, or The Policy Analysis Market, a futures market for betting on acts of terrorism in the Middle East. According to the Colorado Daily, "Yes, this is same John Poindexter who was convicted on felony charges for lying to Congress, fraud and conspiracy as part of the Reagan Administration's Iran-Contra conspiracy. His conviction subsequently was dismissed on grounds that he should have enjoyed immunity from prosecution." The Washington Post says, "President Bush was warned in a more specific way than previously known about intelligence suggesting that al Qaeda terrorists were seeking to attack the United States, a report on the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks indicated yesterday." Computerized voting machines can't be trusted, says the Denver Post. There is strong support of a Gore candidacy for president in 2004. According to The Hill, "A Time/CNN poll conducted between May 21 and 22 showed that if Gore changed his mind and ran for president, 40 percent of Democrats and Independents who lean Democratic nationwide would vote for him. The Democratic runners-up, Sen. Joe Lieberman (Conn.), Sen. John Kerry (Mass.), and Rep. Dick Gephardt (Mo.), would each draw 7 percent of that vote. A Washington Post-ABC News poll from mid-July showed that Bush’s support has dropped sharply amid growing concerns of U.S. casualties in Iraq and questions over whether the administration exaggerated Iraq’s efforts to acquire weapons of mass destruction." Jim Hightower on "A Wilting Bush". Hightower says, "A CBS poll shows that, for the first time, less than half of Americans say that the end results of Bush's war in Iraq have been worth the costs. Also, two-and-a half months after Bush declared "mission accomplished" in Iraq, wives of our soldiers are openly protesting the continuing presence and almost daily deaths of U.S. troops there, and only 45 percent of Americans now believe that U.S. occupiers are in control of events in Iraq. Only 39 percent believe the Bush government was being truthful when it claimed that Saddam Hussein was linked to the al Qaeda terrorists. Almost four in ten Americans now believe that the Bushites deliberately misled the people (and our troops) about whether Saddam had Weapons of Mass Destruction. Maureen Dowd on Wolfowitz before the Senate.
August 1, 2003
So Long Mad JohnMad John Poindexter finally resigned, according to The New York Times. Looks like this last trick with the futures market on terrorism was just too much even for the Bush administration, at least when it has so many other scandals dragging it down. One would think after he got convicted of a number of felonies and managed to go free, he would have faded gracefully from public life. But not Mad John. Not while there's a Bush administration around to elevate him to a position of great power. Don't be surprised if he rears his looney head yet again.
Even after the outrageous online betting casino that would pay people who correctly predicted terrorist attacks and assassinations, the Bushiacs would not go so far as to actually admit any wrongdoing. The Times article quotes a "defense official" speaking for Rumsfield as saying, "It's fair to say that the secretary understood what Admiral Poindexter understands, which is that it's difficult for any work that he might be associated with to receive a dispassionate hearing." Is there one iota of an admission of even a tiny error in that statement? It's a statement about other people not giving Mad John a fair hearing. These criminals are utterly without remorse.
Now it's poor Condi who's taking the wrap for Bush's bogus claim that Iraq had gotten uranium from Niger. Anyone take this hot potato, anyone but George W. Bush. The buck stops anywhere but here. George decided to try something new on Wednesday, claiming that he "takes personal responsible for everything I say." See ABC. Willie Nelson is doing radio spots for Dennis Kucinich. See IWonNews. Two more American soldiers killed in Iraq. And the Bush administration throws taxpayer money around like dirt. It paid $30 million for the tip that led to Saddam's sons. See the Washington Post. Yes, I said it. Watch out for more terrorist attacks! Bush took responsibility for his own statements after weeks of letting others try to take it for him, then quickly changed the subject to his favorite subject: Boo! Scared ya! I am the President! Bush vs Mr. X -- Bush loses. Less than half of Americans polled would return Bush to office. See Yahoo.
August 3, 2003
Sunday Morning Movie: "Grand Theft America" -- An educational and entertaining video by Eric Blumrich lays out the basic ugly facts about the theft of the election in Florida in 2000. Over 55,000 voters illegally robbed of their right to vote. Gore was considered to have "lost" the election by 537 votes. For more great, high-impact, politically urgent, moving graphics, see Bushflash.com. Phony to the Core -- In "Poseur in Chief" Jeremy Heimans and Tim Dixon writing in Salon put forth the proposition that "Democrats can't win in '04 by fighting Bush on the issues alone. They have to convince Americans that their warrior president is a phony in a flyboy suit." Time Out for Seekers of Large Penises -- After receiving so many notices for people who would like to enlarge their penises, it seems only fair as a public service to finally give one a fair hearing, and pass on the word, just in case there are any browsing through these cyberhalls who are really concerned with such issues and believe there is someone out there who can help. After all 10,000 e-mails can't be wrong -- or can they? As a disclaimer, it must be said: this is no doubt a crock and a swindle. For those for whom the old methods are unsatisfactory, click on How To Enlarge Your Penis. (Maybe someone should send this link to Bush, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Ashcroft, Poindexter, and all those others who seem to suffer from some misdirected masculinity anxieties.) How the White House Shifted its Rationale for Invading Iraq -- From the Weapons of Mass Destruction lies to other, vaguer lies about "Middle East Stability". See how the shift was made incrementally in an articlel by Dana Milbank and Mike Allen in the Washington Post. California (Bad) Dreaming -- Paul Krugman in the New York Times puts forth the proposition the the future usually arrives in California first, and therefore the bogus Republican-funded and -manipulated election recall may be a harbinger of things to come nationally. Actually we already see quite a lot of similar election rigging and violation of the basic principles of democratic government for partisan political gain, such as the redistricting fiasco in Texas. Nixon and Reagan were from California, and they more than any other former presidents define the present era. And then again, a lot of today's political horrors are directly traceable to Texas and Florida, that is, Bush country, where corruption is king. The Feel-Good Article of the Week -- The consistently passionate, eloquent and funny Mark Morford, writing in the SFGate, gives us a peek at the long perspective, one in which -- no matter how gruesomely omnipresent in the current scenario -- GW Bush and company ultimately do not matter. See "George W. Bush Means Nothing (Note to self: The demons of sour conservatism cannot touch anything that truly matters. Just FYI.") And the Hideous Dream Goes On ... Stan Goff, former Special Forces sergeant and military instructor at West Point, author of "Hideous Dreams," about his experiences in Haiti (a Soft Skull press book) is interviewd on Truthout.org by Jennifer Van Bergen. Goff has been there on the scene in Vietnam, Colombia and Haiti, and knows what he's talking about. The Hapless Tony Blair may have to testify as to mysterious aspects of the death of the BBC's source for the story on how Blair's government "sexed up" the intelligence information on Iraq's alleged WMDs. See the Guardian.