Tuesday, December 28, 2004
You can find the new page by clicking on the giant logo or the simple way by Clicking Here.
This site wll no longer be updated so make sure you update your bookmark!
From wthe time I wrote this post until about 3 minutes ago I completely made up an entire days time, it's not ready yet but I think I'll have all of the bugs (graphics and little touches) worked out by Thursday. I'm still shooting for next month but if it goes any easier I might have to change my plans!
It looks really good right now, I'm glad I had this time to do all of these things!
As you may have noticed some of the links don't work and some of the graphics aren't loading, that's my fault not your browsers.
I have found another host with cheap PHP and MYSQL so to morrow is moving and configuring day, oh boy!
This sucks because it's taking longer than I planned on, the other host I was using just didn't pan out so i had to go looking and to top it off I went to the emergency room this evening for chest pains and shortness of breath, I'm alright apparently I have a pulled muscle on my rib cage or a back muscle thats forcing me to take shorter, more frequent breaths causing acute hyperventilation. From what I'm told this is a common problem in young guys like myself and I'm not complaining, it's better than heart or lung problems. The doctor even complemented my demeanor about the whole thing, apparently the guys that come in with this freak out and start hyperventilating and pass out, I didn't...almost getting out of the car but I remained calm and took long deep breaths and stayed pretty placid.
So that was fun....if hospital gowns and EKGs are your kind of thing but I'm back and ready to go and of course this is just how things work out, there's always something slowing you down but everything is OK!
Monday, December 27, 2004
As soon as I get a new hosting package that won't try and rip me off for using PHP and MYSQL.
The site should take about a day to configure and a week to test my style which is to try and break it beyond repair to see how it holds up, oy.
The biggest issue is the Hosting package, the other stuff is simple.
In my attempt to relaunch the site I didn't hear about the 9.0 in the Indian Ocean.
As soon as I find a viable link for relief efforts I'll post a link, this just such a horrible thing to happen.
Sunday, December 26, 2004
So it seems as if Christmas went ahead as planned, those secularist jews had their plans spoiled yet again!
Christmas was never under siege!
Saturday, December 25, 2004
Enjoy your holiday season I will return on Tuesday devoting my full attention to the relaunch over the self imposed 3 day weekend!
Sleep in today or better yet go to work, it's double pay on Christmas!
Thursday, December 23, 2004
Pretty good op-ed
THANKS TO a lawsuit by the American Civil Liberties Union and other human rights groups, thousands of pages of government documents released this month have confirmed some of the painful truths about the abuse of foreign detainees by the U.S. military and the CIA -- truths the Bush administration implacably has refused to acknowledge. Since the publication of photographs of abuse at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison in the spring the administration's whitewashers -- led by Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld -- have contended that the crimes were carried out by a few low-ranking reservists, that they were limited to the night shift during a few chaotic months at Abu Ghraib in 2003, that they were unrelated to the interrogation of prisoners and that no torture occurred at the Guantanamo Bay prison where hundreds of terrorism suspects are held. The new documents establish beyond any doubt that every part of this cover story is false.
Though they represent only part of the record that lies in government files, the documents show that the abuse of prisoners was already occurring at Guantanamo in 2002 and continued in Iraq even after the outcry over the Abu Ghraib photographs. FBI agents reported in internal e-mails and memos about systematic abuses by military interrogators at the base in Cuba, including beatings, chokings, prolonged sleep deprivation and humiliations such as being wrapped in an Israeli flag. "On a couple of occasions I entered interview rooms to find a detainee chained hand and foot in a fetal position to the floor, with no chair, food or water," an unidentified FBI agent wrote on Aug. 2, 2004. "Most times they had urinated or defecated on themselves, and had been left there for 18 to 24 hours or more." Two defense intelligence officials reported seeing prisoners severely beaten in Baghdad by members of a special operations unit, Task Force 6-26, in June. When they protested they were threatened and pictures they took were confiscated.
The U.S. dollar hit an all-time low Thursday against the euro, which breached the $1.35 mark after a mixed economic report from the U.S. Commerce Department.
The euro peaked at $1.3506 in thin trading at midday in New York, up more than a cent from $1.3381 late Wednesday. The previous high of $1.3470 was set Dec. 7.
The 12-nation currency has risen sharply since September, when it was trading for around $1.20, over persistent concerns about the ballooning U.S. trade and budget deficits.
Has the littlest dictator lost control?
European policymakers have been advised to prepare for "sudden change" in North Korea amid growing speculation among diplomats and observers that Kim Jong Il is losing his grip on power. A European Union delegation to Pyongyang recommended a review of the union's policy toward the peninsula, including proposals for closer engagement with North Korea and contingency plans for a possible collapse of the reclusive state, the Guardian has learned.
The sense of urgency was prompted by reports of divisions within the North Korean leadership and expectations that the second Bush administration will intensify pressure on a country the U.S. president labeled part of an "axis of evil." Despite boasting about its nuclear deterrent, North Korea has been left on the diplomatic back burner for the past 12 months.
Six-country talks aimed at resolving one of the world's last Cold War conflicts have been postponed largely because the two main protagonists -- Washington and Pyongyang -- were awaiting the results of the U.S. presidential election. In the past month, however, the North Korean rumor mill has been working overtime. While no one is ever quite sure what is going on in one of the world's most closed countries, diplomats, intelligence agents, academics and defectors across the political spectrum and from several different countries are reporting signs of potentially destabilizing change.
There are strong indications of a power struggle centering on the successor to Kim Jong Il. Last weekend South Korean news agencies reported an assassination attempt on Kim Jong Nam, a son of the "Great Leader," while he was on a trip to Europe. The plan, which was foiled by Austrian police, is believed to have been hatched by supporters of a rival son.
Wednesday, December 22, 2004
I do not celebrate Christmas but I do enjoy giving people stuff for free!
There are two gift subscriptions to Salon.com, a leading voice in real journalism and I link to them quite often so in the spirit of Christmas I am giving two one year subscriptions away.
Send me an E-mail and I will randomly pick the two lucky bastards who receives the gift of journalism.
E-mail address is smaftymac @ gmail dot com
Values are silly things I guess.
The House Small Business Committee's chief economist was charged by Capitol Police with the attempted theft of a plasma television Thursday night.
According to a Capitol Police memorandum, officers apprehended the suspect, Thomas Loo, in the Rayburn House Office Building at approximately 10 p.m. Thursday after a Financial Services Committee staff member discovered Loo removing a plasma television from a room on the building's second floor.
Daniel McGlinchey, a professional staff member of the Financial Services panel, said he entered the committee's overflow hearing room, Room 2220, shortly before 10 p.m. to retrieve items from his office, located in a connected room.
"There was this guy standing there, and on a dolly there was something large wrapped in cardboard," McGlinchey said in a telephone interview. "He seemed a little surprised to see me."
McGlinchey said he at first assumed the man, who was dressed "casually," was removing items from an earlier reception or other event in the hearing room. But when McGlinchey proceeded to enter his office, he looked back and noticed that the man, who had begun to remove the dolly from the room, seemed "agitated."
"Then I noticed the plasma TV on the wall is not there," said McGlinchey, who proceeded to follow the suspect.
"I went out to the hallway and said, `Is that our TV?," McGlinchey recalled. "What are you doing with our TV?"
According to McGlinchey, Loo's response was unintelligible and he continued to wheel the dolly toward a nearby elevator. "He was walking down the hall really fast, and I said, `You're not leaving with that TV until we talk to the police," he added.
Read this and tell me this isn't biased
President Bush (news - web sites)'s campaign to make the tax code simpler, fairer and more pro-growth is likely to involve incremental changes to the current system rather than a sweeping effort to scrap the venerable income tax for a radically new approach, such as a national sales tax.
This isn't from Newsmax or World Net Daily, it's from the AP.
Tuesday, December 21, 2004
Oh those pesky Wingnuts!
Her new show starts on MSNBC in January....or better put MSGOP.
It's never good to get your hand caught in the cookie jar. But if caught you must be, Chatterbox recommends that you arrange for it to happen during the month of August, when the media get lazy and inattentive. The latest illustration of this principle is the lack of publicity surrounding some apparent plagiarism committed by Monica Crowley, Richard Nixon's former editorial adviser and research consultant, now a Fox News political analyst and author of two titillating books dishing "candid commentary" from her mentor, Nixon Off the Record, which had a splashy Clinton-bashing excerpt in The New Yorker, and Nixon in Winter. (Watch for Nixon From Beyond the Grave: His Thoughts on Clinton's Impeachment, The War in Kosovo, and the Harry Potter Craze, coming from Random House this fall.)
On August 9--the 25th anniversary of Richard Nixon's presidential resignation--the Wall Street Journal's editorial page published a Nixon apologia by Crowley headlined "The Day Nixon Said Goodbye." Four days later, the Journal ran an editor's note that read as follows: "There are striking similarities in phraseology between "The Day Richard Nixon Said Goodbye," an editorial feature Monday by Monica Crowley, and a 1988 article by Paul Johnson in Commentary magazine ... Had we known of the parallels, we would not have published the article." Pretty interesting, no? Yet a Nexis search conducted earlier today turned up only two other references to this incident--one in a New York Post gossip column that appeared the same day the Journal ran its editor's note, and one brief item that ran in the back of the New York Times' business section three days later.
What did she rip off you ask?
Let's proceed to the evidence:
From Johnson's "In Praise of Richard Nixon," Commentary, October 1988:
"There was none of the personal corruption which had marked the rule of Lyndon Johnson, let alone the gross immoralities and security risks of John F. Kennedy's White House."
From Crowley's "The Day Nixon Said Goodbye," Wall Street Journal, August 9, 1999:
"There was none of the personal corruption that had marked the rule of Lyndon Johnson or the base immoralities and outrageous security risks of the Kennedy and Clinton White Houses."
"Nixon ... consistently underestimated the unscrupulousness of his media enemies and their willingness to sacrifice the national interest in the pursuit of their institutional vendetta."
"Nixon, though always suspicious of his political enemies, consistently underestimated their ruthlessness and willingness to sacrifice the national interest in the pursuit of their institutional vendetta."
"So great was the inequity of Nixon's downfall that future historians may well conclude he would have been justified in allowing events to take their course and in subjecting the nation to the prolonged paralysis of a public impeachment, which at least would have given him the opportunity to defend himself by due process of law. But once again his patriotism took precedence over his self-interest ..."
"Given the inequity of Nixon's downfall, historians may yet determine that he would have been justified in allowing events to take their course and subjecting the country to a prolonged process of impeachment, which would have given him the chance to defend himself by due process of law. His allegiance to the country, however, overrode his political self-interest."
Characterizes the 1960 election as "one of the most corrupt elections of modern times."
Characterizes the 1960 election as "one of the most corrupt elections of modern times."
[This assertion, unlike the others, has some merit, and it's possible the two arrived at the phrase independent of one another; but given the other examples cited here, that likelihood is not great.]
"By a curious paradox Richard Nixon was one of the very few people who emerged from the Watergate affair with credit."
"Ironically, Nixon was one of the few people who emerged from Watergate with credit ..."
[Johnson is British, Crowley American; why would she, on her own, use a Britishism like "with credit"?]
All of this and Kerry still couldn't beat him, oy.
Republicans like to brag about the sweeping mandate that President Bush received on Election Day. But as he prepares for his second term, Bush approaches Inauguration Day with historically weak job-approval ratings, according to a series of new opinion polls. Unless there's a dramatic turnaround in public sentiment between now and Jan. 20, Bush will be sworn in to office with the lowest job-approval rating -- barely 50 percent -- of any president in the last 80 years, or since modern-day presidential polling began.
"It's striking how weak he is right now," says presidential historian Richard Shenkman, editor of George Mason University's History News Network. "You'd have to go back to Woodrow Wilson to find a president who was reelected in a position as weak as this one. There's been no euphoria around Bush's win."
Since his 3-percentage-point win over Sen. John Kerry, Bush has experienced a complete lack of bounce in the polls. In fact, in at least one national survey, Fox News' Opinion Dynamics poll, conducted Dec. 14-15, Bush's approval rating has fallen five points in the last month, to 48 percent. In other polls, including Washington Post-ABC, NBC/Wall Street Journal, Pew Research Center, Associated Press-Ipsos, Zogby, and Gallup, Bush's already soft approval numbers have flat-lined since the election. That phenomenon stands in sharp contrast to U.S. history, when presidents voted into office for a second term, even after close elections, routinely have received robust approval ratings.
According to an analysis posted on the Gallup Web site in mid-November, Bush's current 53 percent approval rating "is actually the lowest of any of the last seven presidents who won a second term in the first poll conducted after their re-election." Right after securing their second terms, Bill Clinton received a 58 percent approval rating, Ronald Reagan 61 percent, Richard Nixon 62 percent, Lyndon Johnson 70 percent, Dwight Eisenhower 75 percent, and Harry Truman 69 percent.
Not only is Bush's 50 percent approval rating dismal for a two-term president, it's arguably the worst for any president about to be sworn into office. The only other modern-day president with such shaky approval ratings immediately following an election win was Reagan. According to a January 1981 Gallup poll, his job approval rating stood at just 51 percent. (Since Gallup began polling in 1937, Bush and Reagan are the only two presidents to take office with job approval ratings that low.) The difference between Reagan and Bush, though, was that Reagan's disapproval rating at the time was just 13 percent. Today, Bush's negative rating hovers in the 40s. "His high disapproval numbers are astonishing," says Shenkman.
The ACLU seems to think so, in fact they might even have the goods on him!
A document released for the first time today by the American Civil Liberties Union suggests that President Bush issued an Executive Order authorizing the use of inhumane interrogation methods against detainees in Iraq. Also released by the ACLU today are a slew of other records including a December 2003 FBI e-mail that characterizes methods used by the Defense Department as "torture" and a June 2004 "Urgent Report" to the Director of the FBI that raises concerns that abuse of detainees is being covered up.
"These documents raise grave questions about where the blame for widespread detainee abuse ultimately rests," said ACLU Executive Director Anthony D. Romero. "Top government officials can no longer hide from public scrutiny by pointing the finger at a few low-ranking soldiers."
The documents were obtained after the ACLU and other public interest organizations filed a lawsuit against the government for failing to respond to a Freedom of Information Act request.
The two-page e-mail that references an Executive Order states that the President directly authorized interrogation techniques including sleep deprivation, stress positions, the use of military dogs, and "sensory deprivation through the use of hoods, etc." The ACLU is urging the White House to confirm or deny the existence of such an order and immediately to release the order if it exists. The FBI e-mail, which was sent in May 2004 from "On Scene Commander--Baghdad" to a handful of senior FBI officials, notes that the FBI has prohibited its agents from employing the techniques that the President is said to have authorized.
Another e-mail, dated December 2003, describes an incident in which Defense Department interrogators at Guantánamo Bay impersonated FBI agents while using "torture techniques" against a detainee. The e-mail concludes "If this detainee is ever released or his story made public in any way, DOD interrogators will not be held accountable because these torture techniques were done [sic] the ‘FBI’ interrogators. The FBI will [sic] left holding the bag before the public."
The document also says that no "intelligence of a threat neutralization nature" was garnered by the "FBI" interrogation, and that the FBI’s Criminal Investigation Task Force (CITF) believes that the Defense Department’s actions have destroyed any chance of prosecuting the detainee. The e-mail’s author writes that he or she is documenting the incident "in order to protect the FBI."
"The methods that the Defense Department has adopted are illegal, immoral, and counterproductive," said ACLU staff attorney Jameel Jaffer. "It is astounding that these methods appear to have been adopted as a matter of policy by the highest levels of government."
I may be wrong but I do believe this veers into the realm of impeachment, the President cannot issue executive orders like this. I believe he would have to get Congressional approval because this goes against the Geneva convention and technically it's a constitutional issue and something the Supreme Court will have to be involved in.
IF this is true!