This is What Democracy Looks Like
Today's Note From a Madman
Tuesday, February 21, 2006
One Big, Fat, Stupid Bush Quote in the Lead
"I want those who are questioning (the sale of six US ports to a UAE company) to step up and explain why all of a sudden a Middle Eastern company is held to a different standard than a Great British company."
-President "G"lobal "W"arming Bush
Who writes this crap for GW? Everyone is questioning it Mr. President, even your lackey Bill Frist! Now let me tell you why:
-The UAE hid money for Osama bin-Laden
-The UAE supported and recognized the Taliban in Afghanistan
-The UAE offers no democracy or democratic values nor open elections for their citizens
-Shari'a courts using strict Muslim law that treats women differently from men
And that's just off the top of my head. (Oh... So THAT'S where my hair went!)
But I think that the
following statement really says it all:
"Problems remained in the (UAE) Government's respect for human rights. Citizens do not have the right to change their government. The Government restricted freedom of speech and of the press. The press practiced self-censorship. The Government restricted free assembly and association, and it restricted religious freedom by banning proselytizing of Muslims. The Government restricted the rights of workers, many of whom were not protected by labor laws. There are no labor unions. There were poor working conditions for some laborers, failure to pay wages, and abuse of foreign domestic servants in an economy in which 98 percent of the private sector workforce is foreign. There were no independent human rights organizations. Trafficking in women as prostitutes and very young foreign boys as camel jockeys continue to be serious problems, despite government pledges to end these practices."
-The United States Department of State, Country Reports on Human Rights Practices - 2004, Released by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, February 28, 2005
And what about this story from "The Standard - China's Business Newspaper":
Carlyle, KKR buyout funds secure Dubai's support
Carlyle Group and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, which between them raised more than US$15 billion (HK$117 billion) for new buyout funds this year, are getting backing from Dubai.
-http://thestandard.com.hk/news_detail.asp?we_cat=10&art_id=5889&sid=5533595&con_type=1&d_str=20051118, November 18, 2005 (from Bloomberg)
And as an "Oh, by the way", just what is the relationship between the Carlyle Group and Dubai regarding the $6.8 billion US port buyout Deal? (Former President George H.W. Bush sits on the Carlyle Group board with Osama bin-Laden's brother, Shafig bin Laden.) I think a little research is in order before turning over the keys to our nation's ports occurs, don't you?
More and more open spaces and farms are being sacrificed to over-development. Lost tax revenue has led to the need of communities to raise money. They are allowing developers to put up these mini-mansions (also known as McMansions) on any stamp-size piece of land available. For example, in my town there was a small piece of land on a secondary, two-lane road which backs up to a Conrail commercial railroad track. They cleared the brush and are putting up the fifth of five homes as I write this.
Even with the influx of the semi-rich into these new "I wanna-be richer than I am" homes, and the huge property tax bills that come with them, somehow there still isn't enough money to fund public schools. If the average American family only has 2.5 children (that's a "guess-timate"), and these new homes (at least in New Jersey) are demanding taxes of eight- to twelve-thousand dollars a year in taxes (in some of the more affluent areas, those rates are even higher), how come we can't afford to fund our schools properly? And whatever happened to using the lottery and other gambling money on education?
Talk-Talk-Talk. It's all a bunch of crap.
When President Bush encourages outsourcing because we don't have enough engineers and "qualified people" in the United States to do the job, he fails to tell us that it is his administration's schemes that are the problem. He, and his "G"reed "O"ver "P"eople party offer no solutions except more tax breaks for those who don't need it and don't offer anything in return. The money they steal from our US treasury has to be replaced somehow. The local tax dollars that used to be used to educate our young are being used to supplement the lost federal tax dollars that used to come back to the states. The money that used to be in "surplus" is no longer there. Instead, we pay interest to our competitor nations as a finance charge and a "thank you" for stealing our jobs.
When was the last time you called Dell or Microsoft or a computer problem? Was it someone in the United States who answered the call or a tech in India? And, as if you needed to ask, just who do you think paid for their education? Their country did, and sometimes they even send them to the US to take a spot that might have gone to an underprivileged kid who can't afford to pay for his (or her) own education.
Earlier I mentioned that the ultra-rich who receive the bulk of the Bush tax breaks offer nothing in return. When they receive their tax give-backs, what do you think they do with it? Nothing that they wouldn't have done without it. Keeping the same tax structure that we had under the Clinton administration would have helped keep this nation in the black and would have contributed to educating our children for, as the Bushies like to say, "the jobs of tomorrow".
If I Lived Where You Live, I Would Be Packing
When 93% of AOL viewers read news about the sale of six American ports to Saudi (UAE) control, and then vote to form militias to solve the problem, the story is pulled off the net quickly.
This is exactly what happened last night on AOL.
A deal forged by Bush/Rice and Chertoff to sell control of six major seaports in the United States, to a Saudi company based in the UAE, is in the works and Rice is busy apologizing to the Saudis that there is some discussion about this and some dissent, amongst some of Congress, some of whom are, egad, Republican.
The ports are: New York, New Jersey, Baltimore, New Orleans, Miami and Philadelphia.
Most of the details of the deal are classified, although, Congress has been invited to review said secrets and hopefull will, in the upcoming month.
Fully 93% of the typical AOL posters are talking militia forming, as the only hope this country now has of surviving the remainder of the Bush administration and whatever take-over scheme he has in mind for 2008.
AOL posters are pretty mild for the most part, 90% of the time, on 90% of issues. They tend to know how to spell and get into real discussion with very little name calling and digression into toilet humor.
They are FURIOUS at this new betrayal by the Bush cartel in DC. The only other news souce I know of where this story has broken nationally is michealsavage who ran it about a week ago.
Those with relatives in the military in Iraq are ready to march on the White House in ways that Cindy Sheehan never dreamed. To grant control of major seaports to a company with known ties to 9/11, as well as supply of nuclear fissionable material to Iran, is not only unthinkable but a total betrayal of the military and loved ones serving.
The infestation of foreign Arab Muslim extremists into the cities of these ports is equally, unthinkable.
Bush may finally have stepped on enough toes, hard enough, to have somebody swing the hammer like they mean it, at his folly, his presidency.
I think the Minutemen are going to get a lot of applications this coming month.
Mike Ferguson's Mask of Conservation
We have long maintained that Congressman Michael Ferguson (R-NJ) presents a moderate face to New Jersey's 7th Congressional District, but that when he goes down to Washington DC he removes the mask and votes as the true right wing conservative he truly is. For a time, he could get away with it and even fool progressive organizations into believing they could work with him.
As a result, early in his tenure Ferguson received endorsements from groups like the League of Conservation Voters (LCV), a non-partisan organization that endorses Democrats and Republicans. In 2001, LCV gave Ferguson an impressive 71 percent rating for his first year in Congress and endorsed his reelection in 2002.
Then things changed, and Ferguson's true voting patten emerged. After starting well, Ferguson finished his first full term with a lowly 59 percent rating. His second term score dropped even farther, slipping to 35 percent over 2003 and 2004 and losing the LCV endorsement.
Today the LCV ratings for 2005 came out and, as predicted last week, his environmental record plummetted to a lowly 17 percent.
This is from a guy who says this on his campaign website:
"If I think our leaders in the House or President Bush are wrong in advocating policies that would weaken our environment, I have and I will continue to stand up for what is right," Congressman Ferguson said. "As the father of three young children, I believe I have a responsibility to protect our environment, preserve open space and ensure our children and grandchildren inherit an environment that is vibrant and strong."
According to the League of Conservation voters, he stopped standing up for what is right years ago.
Madison Avenue Imitating Real Life
I was watching a Domino's Pizza commercial The theme was that Domino's 5-5-5 deal is so good that you can spend a little on an extravagance.
The father greets the delivery boy at the front door of a dark house (a house with no lights on whatsoever). After taking the pizzas, the father, realizing how great the deal was, says to his kids something to the effect of "Man, with the money I save, we could afford to live a little, right? Okay kids, turn on the lamp." The children cheer as they see light for the first time in a long time. A few seconds later, the father says "Okay, kids, lamp time is over" and they're sad again.
And I'm thinking that, with the price of energy rising and the disappearance of any middle class disposable income, that this is not that far from the way it is. An evening out will be Domino's pizza in a dark, cold house.
I wonder if they contributed to Bush-Cheney '04?
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