News of the Day (Saturday, April 22, 2006)

April 22, 2006 at 9:22 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Boy, there is just so much stuff to report on, so I’m going to put it in one blog today.

Here we go:

2005 worldwide terror attacks exceeded 10,000

Yet the numbers are a striking reminder that violence around the globe has dramatically increased in the more than four years of the war on terror.

So, four years into Bush’s “War on Terror” the amount of terrorist acts around the world has INCREASED! not decreased… does one judge the success of any effort? Is it not by ending the attacks, rather than they increasing in number? If the war in Iraq doesn’t show that Bush failed, then this should. The War in Iraq had nothing to do with the “War on Terror”, except in that we opened up Iraq TO terror.

Hastert, Frist Ask Bush to Probe Rising Gas Prices

Congressional leaders yesterday planned to ask President Bush to order investigations into possible price gouging by oil companies as crude oil prices hit new highs on world markets and average gasoline prices in the nation’s capital blew through the $3-a-gallon mark.

House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) and Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) are preparing to send a letter to the president Monday asking him to direct the Federal Trade Commission and Justice Department to investigate alleged price gouging and instruct the Environmental Protection Agency to issue waivers that might make it easier for oil refiners to produce adequate gasoline supplies, Hastert spokesman Ron Bonjean said.

The ONLY reason Frist and Hastert are even concerned about this is because they know rising gas prices are gonna kill Republicans in the November election……

Wenyi Wang Goes To Jail

WENYI WANG acted rudely when she yelled and waved a banner at visiting Chinese President Hu Jintao during his White House appearance Thursday. The Secret Service was right to hustle her off the grounds. President Bush was right to apologize. But does Ms. Wang deserve to go to prison for six months? That might be the response to embarrassing and rude speech in Beijing. It shouldn’t be in Washington. But yesterday the U.S. government charged Ms. Wang under a law that could bring her that sentence.

Ms. Wang, a member of the Falun Gong sect, which China suppresses, got into the media section at the White House lawn ceremony with credentials from a newspaper run by the spiritual group. According to court documents, she waved a yellow banner and shouted in Chinese: “Stop oppressing the Falun Gong,” “Your time is running out,” and “Anything you have done will come back to you in this lifetime.” She also yelled to Mr. Bush, “Stop him from persecuting Falun Gong!”

For that, Ms. Wang has been charged under a law that makes anyone who “intimidates, coerces, threatens, or harasses a foreign official or an official guest or obstructs a foreign official in the performance of his duties” face up to six months in jail. Such laws are necessary to protect visiting dignitaries from attacks — and to ensure reciprocal protections for U.S. officials abroad.

But no one alleges that Mr. Hu was ever in danger of anything more serious than irritation or humiliation. According to the court documents, the yelling caused Mr. Hu “to interrupt his speech” and look toward Ms. Wang. There’s no question that it also caused Mr. Bush to be embarrassed about a lapse of protocol for a visitor acutely sensitive to diplomatic niceties. Okay, but the United States shouldn’t indirectly apologize to the Chinese by means of an action that affronts American values.

Just simply more bungling by the Bush Administration this past week with President Hu’s visit. Interestingly, never before has any protester done this, as an American president is meeting with a foreign president at the White House, to shout out and disrupt the two leaders. Not only that, but President Hu visited Bill Gates in Seattle, and never had this happen to him there. This certainly looks, and smells, like a setup, a staging, to embarass the Chinese President. It smells of Karl Rove.

A Spy Speaks Out

Drumheller, who retired last year, says the White House ignored crucial information from a high and credible source. The source was Iraq’s foreign minister, Naji Sabri, with whom U.S. spies had made a deal.

When CIA Director George Tenet delivered this news to the president, the vice president and other high ranking officials, they were excited — but not for long.

“[The source] told us that there were no active weapons of mass destruction programs,” says Drumheller. “The [White House] group that was dealing with preparation for the Iraq war came back and said they were no longer interested. And we said ‘Well, what about the intel?’ And they said ‘Well, this isn’t about intel anymore. This is about regime change.’ “

They didn’t want any additional data from Sabri because, says Drumheller: “The policy was set. The war in Iraq was coming and they were looking for intelligence to fit into the policy.”

The White House declined to respond to this charge, but Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has stated that Sabri was just one source and therefore not reliable.

Drumheller says the administration routinely relied on single sources — when those single sources confirmed what the White House wanted to hear.

“They certainly took information that came from single sources on the yellowcake story and on several other stories with no corroboration at all,” he says. The “yellowcake story” refers to a report the CIA received in late 2001 alleging that Iraq had purchased 500 tons of uranium from Africa, presumably to build a nuclear bomb.

Many in the CIA doubted the uranium report from the beginning, and continued to doubt it, even as White House speechwriters tried to include the report in the president’s speeches.

In a major speech the president was scheduled to give in Cincinnati, the leadership of the CIA intervened directly to remove the uranium report from the speech. But that didn’t stop it from making it into the president’s State of the Union address a short time later.
“As a British report,” says Drumheller. A senior CIA official signed off on the speech only because the uranium reference was attributed to the British.

“It just sticks in my craw every time I hear them say it’s an intelligence failure. … This was a policy failure. … I think, over time, people will look back on this and see this is going to be one of the great, I think, policy mistakes of all time,” Drumheller tells Bradley.

Rice says he’s just one person therefore unreliable. Yet Rice fails to mention (of course because it would undermine her faulty position) that the Downing Street Memos also have the head of British intelligence saying the SAME THING!

C reported on his recent talks in Washington. There was a perceptible shift in attitude. Military action was now seen as inevitable. Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy. The NSC had no patience with the UN route, and no enthusiasm for publishing material on the Iraqi regime’s record. There was little discussion in Washington of the aftermath after military action.

What’s the phrase from the New Testament? ah! in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.

and finally…..

How The GOP Has Lost Its Way

The elites in the GOP have never understood conservatives or Reagan; they’ve found both to be a bit tacky. They have always found the populists’ commitment to values unsettling. To them, adherence to conservative principles was always less important than wealth and power.

Unfortunately, the GOP has lost its motivating ideals. The revolution of 1994 has been killed not by zeal but by a loss of faith in its own principles. The tragedy is not that we are faced with another fight for the soul of the Republican Party but that we have missed an opportunity to bring a new generation of Americans over to our point of view.

All agree that the Democrats are feckless and without a plan or agenda. But most Americans are now presented with a choice between two parties that are both addicted to power — the Democrats to government power and Republicans to corporate and governmental power. Who speaks for Main Street Reaganism?

It was the populists under Reagan, and later under Newt Gingrich, who energized the party, gave voice to a maturing conservative ideology and swept Republicans into power. We would be imprudent and forgetful to disregard this. But it may be too late, because conservatives don’t want to be part of the looming train wreck. They know that this is no longer Ronald Reagan’s party.

He thinks that Republicans are failing to bring more to their cause because of a loss of faith in their ideals? He’s actually more correct to say that they are losing because of zeal rather than loss of faith. He actually believes that Republicans are not zealous enough right now? This is the worst I’ve ever seen Republicans, in regards to their zeal.

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