Thursday, January 31, 2008

Big Dan's Big News Jan 31, 2008 (Updated w/DN!)

· Ralph Nader Flirts with Presidential Bid. With Harsh Words for Current Field, Nader Says Candidacy as Urgent as Ever

· Ralph Nader's presidential bid exploratory site

Democracy NOW! DISH channels 9410 & 9415, DirecTV channel 275:

Ralph Nader Launches Presidential Exploratory Committee to Mull ’08 Run

The same day John Edwards exited the race, longtime consumer advocate Ralph Nader launched a presidential exploratory committee to decide whether to run as an independent candidate. Nader joins us to talk about his potential run and gives his assessment of the remaining candidates in the presidential field.

RALPH NADER: Well, I’ve launched the exploratory committee with a website,, for those who want to get more details, in order to test the waters in three areas. One is to see if we have an adequate number of volunteers to run a robust fifty-state campaign that would include a network of pro bono lawyers to deal with the obstruction to ballot access that the Democrats engaged in in ’04, filing twenty-three lawsuits against us in just twelve weeks in that year, most of which we won. And second, to get adequate resources, contributions, donations—obviously, we’re not taking any money from corporate sources or political action committees. And that’s possible on the website And finally, to get a talented, committed staff that connects with people’s daily lives and that can help organize one thousand people in each congressional district, not just for ’08, but also for ’09 and later. Congress really is the pivot institution that is most susceptible to change by popular forces, and, of course, it’s the most powerful branch of our government, if they care to use that power, like the impeachment power or the war declaration power under our Constitution.

DN! transcript or DN! video


· Daily Kos' Markos Moulitsas Attacks Election Integrity, Irresponsibly, Yet Again. The World's Most-Read 'Progressive' Blogger Continues to Misinform His Readers, Seems to Have No Understanding of How Our Electoral System Works (or Doesn't)...

· MAYHEM EXPECTED IN CALIFORNIA ON SUPER TUESDAY, ACCORDING TO MEDIA REPORTS! Election Results May be Delayed Until the Next Morning After the Election! County Registrars Help Sound the Alarm!

· Citizen's Guide to Following Vote Transport Vehicles

· Battle for Election Integrity 'Fought and Won by Activists' Says LATimes in 2,800-Word, 2-Part Series Which Doesn't Bother to Quote a Single One of Them...

· Diebold Issues 'Product Advisory' in Florida About Malfunctions with Optical-Scan Voting Systems. Same Model Used in New Hampshire and Hacked in HBO Documentary, as Other Reported Voting System Problems Crop Up Around the Sunshine State During Today's Primary Election...

· RUSH LIMBAUGH ENCOUNTERS TOUCH-SCREEN VOTING FAILURE IN PALM BEACH, FL. Sequoia Voting Machine Freezes While Rightwing Radio Host Tries to Vote in Republican Primary in Sunshine State...


· A town petition making President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney subject to arrest for crimes against the Constitution has triggered a barrage of criticism from people who say residents are "wackjobs" and "nuts.".

· 'Sexy' MySpace mayor faces recall


Democracy NOW! DISH channels 9410 & 9415, DirecTV channel 275:

At Senate Hearing, Attorney General Michael Mukasey Refuses
to Say if Waterboarding is Torture, Illegal

Testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee for the first time since the Senate confirmed his nomination, Attorney General Michael Mukasey refused again to say whether waterboarding is a form of torture or is illegal. Mukasey admitted waterboarding would feel like torture if it was done to him but refused to say whether it would be illegal for a foreign country to waterboard a U.S. citizen. During the hearing Mukasey repeatedly came under harsh questioning from both Democrats and Republicans.

Attorney General Michael Mukasey has refused again to say whether waterboarding is a form of torture or is illegal. On Wednesday Mukasey testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee for the first time since the Senate confirmed his nomination to be Attorney General.

Mukasey admitted waterboarding would feel like torture if it was done to him but he refused to say whether it would be illegal for a foreign country to waterboard a U.S. citizen.

He told Senator Joseph Biden, that the cruelty of torture must be balanced “against the information you might get.” During the hearing Mukasey repeatedly came under harsh questioning from both Democrats and Republicans.

We play selected excerpts of the hearing

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY: Do you agree with them—and with me, for that matter—that waterboarding an American citizen anywhere in the world is torture and illegal—waterboarding an American citizen anywhere in the world is illegal and torture?

ATTORNEY GENERAL MICHAEL MUKASEY: Senator, without going into detail about what they said, I understood what they said to express their personal points of view.

The one thing that separates me from them is that I’m the attorney general and they’re not; that when I pronounce on the reach of general legal principles, that is taken as a statement of how far those principles…

SENATOR EDWARD KENNEDY: So, I won’t even bother to ask you whether waterboarding counts as torture under our laws, because I know from your letter that we won’t get a straight answer. So, let me ask you this: Would waterboarding be torture if it was done to you?


SENATOR DICK DURBIN: If the Detainee Treatment Act, I think, is clear, in terms of the law of the land and the expression of this chamber, and even went so far as to offer amnesty, immunity to employees of the government who have been engaged in it, you still think that the jury’s out on whether the Senate believes that waterboarding is torture?

ATTORNEY GENERAL MICHAEL MUKASEY: The question is not whether the Senate is out on this or that technique. The question is whether the Senate has spoken clearly enough in the legislation that it has passed and that the Congress at large has passed and that the president has signed, which is all anybody’s really got to work with.

SENATOR DICK DURBIN: So, where is the lack of clarity in the McCain legislation?

ATTORNEY GENERAL MICHAEL MUKASEY: The words of the legislation, of all the legislation that’s thus far been passed, are words that are general and upon which, as I said, people on both sides of the debate have already disagreed.

To point to this language or that language, it seems to me, is to pick—is to pick nits at this point. People have disagreed about the generality of the language and have said that it can be read two ways.

SENATOR DICK DURBIN: I might just say that, as the chairman has noted here as a matter of record, Senators McCain, Warner and Graham, the lead sponsors of this legislation, have said that under the Military Commission Act waterboarding is a war crime. It is unequivocal.

How do you—at this moment in time, you have employees of your department in Iraq counseling the police and army there not to use waterboarding and torture. And their standard, unfortunately, at least leading up to this moment, has been that it depends on the circumstances.

Do you see the problem with your ambivalence on this issue when it comes to setting a standard that we are trying to teach to the world, a standard we want our own people to be protected by?

ATTORNEY GENERAL MICHAEL MUKASEY: The standards—the problems posed by what you call ambivalence, which I don’t think is really ambivalence, but rather a due caution for the reasons that I outlined, are already matters of record.

DN! transcript or DN! video


NEPA news:

· Billionaire accused of lying about alleged ties to mafia. Billionaire casino owner Louis A. DeNaples was charged with perjury Wednesday and accused of lying to state gaming regulators about his alleged ties to organized crime figures. The Dauphin County grand jury that recommended the charges also recommended that regulators revoke DeNaples’ license to operate the Mount Airy Casino Resort and order him to forfeit the $50 million license fee he paid to the state.

· More than 300 show support for Catholic teachers

· Grier’s fight with county continues. Wilkes-Barre man wants to stop officials from continuing with borrowing while challenges persist.

· Wyoming police search wrong apartment. Borough police busted open the wrong door last week when serving a search warrant at a three-unit apartment building at Eighth Street and Susquehanna Avenue.

· Remains found on interstates result of homicide, officials say. She stood 5 feet, 7 inches tall and was heavyset. Her white skin was likely a contrast to her dark hair, which was highlighted by strands of gray.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Big Dan Shows "SICKO" At Big Dan's House (re-post/update)

(click on picture to enlarge)

(Left to right: deedee the head of Operation Democracy for Luzerne County, middle activist Tim Grier signing something, right Carl Romanelli of the Green Party)

On behalf of Operation Democracy, we had a viewing of Michael Moore's "SICKO" at Big Dan's house. Yes, it was my turn to do something! There were about 15 people there, most of them were also on the "Troops Out Now" anti-war protest we went to in Washington DC during the summer.

We started the evening off, with my wife burning the popcorn! The microwave was full of smoke, so I left it closed and took it out to the driveway...THEN opened it and let all the smoke out. The arriving guests were greeted by a microwave in my driveway!

We had drinks, popcorn, peanuts, cookies...and then sat down and watched "SICKO". Afterwards, there was lots of excellent political discussion and also discussion about the movie "SICKO". It was not about the Democrats, Republicans, Green Party, Luzerne County politics, etc...but simply to view the movie "SICKO". Of course, after the movie, discussion turned to those other subjects and there were petitions, delegate signatures, etc...

I know everyone had a great time, and it was a lot of fun!

I would appreciate anyone who was there, using the comments for this post, to let everyone know their thoughts on the event, and if they are looking forward to another movie at Big Dan's house!

Note: I took ONE picture, and this is it! I hate taking pictures, so I put it off until later. Then I forgot to take more pictures! GODDAMMIT!!!

Next time!

· All three regional congressmen face re-election this fall,and at least one will be very HOT. I'm Bill Kelly. Join me and congressmen Chris Carney, Paul Kanjorski, and Tim Holden live from our high-definition theater. We'll talk hardball politics; congressional and presidential. We'll take calls and e-mails and questions from the theater as you talk face to face with the people who take you to the US House of Representatives and who bring the House home to you.

· Click HERE for your FREE tickets! Check the FIRST box that says, "State of PA Town Meeting w/ Congressmen January 31 "



Although our Operation Democracy is not affiliated with any party, Carl Romanelli of the Green Party attended Big Dan's Garden Party showing of the movie "SICKO"! I believe that all voices are welcome into our group, and he does share a lot of our progressive views. Here's a trailer from a film about Carl, called "It Ain't Easy Being Green":

Brits Don't Wear Underwear!

.....guy seated next to the Queen is priceless!

(thanks for the pix, deedee! deedee is the woman in this post)

Rudy Drops Out Of Bid For "President of 9/11"

· AFP: Giuliani 'one of most spectacular flame-outs in history'

· NEW YORK—At a well-attended rally in front of his new Ground Zero headquarters Monday, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani officially announced his plan to run for president of 9/11.

As McCain Wins Florida Primary, Ex-Frontrunner Giuliani Expected to Quit GOP Race

McCain’s win positions him as the Republican frontrunner heading into “Super Tuesday” next week with contests in more than 20 states. At third place, former frontrunner Rudolph Giuliani is widely expected to drop out of the race today and endorse Senator McCain. We speak with Florida radio host and television reporter Jim DeFede and Village Voice senior editor Wayne Barrett, author of two books on Giuliani.

DN! transcript or DN! video


Big Dan's Big News Jan 30, 2008

· Snipes, the star of the “Blade” films and “White Men Can’t Jump,” is on trial with two tax protesters in one of the biggest criminal cases in IRS history, and the agency hopes the media attention on the matter will dissuade others in the “tax avoidance” movement from trying to outwit the government. (click here)

· The Supreme Court Forgets the Little People. Rights and Liberties: The conservative-dominated court is totally out of touch with the rest of the country.

· Fox News Is in for a Very Rough 2008
By Eric Boehlert, Media Matters for America. MediaCulture: From losing the election ratings race to CNN, to watching its favored son Rudy Giuliani fizzle in the primaries, Fox News is in for a bad year.

· McCain now positioned to finish dramatic comeback. John McCain emerged from Florida Tuesday as the front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination, now poised to complete a remarkable comeback just months after being written off as politically dead.

· Immigration officials detaining, deporting American citizens

· Foreclosures rise across America

· West's shame: Poor in Haiti eat dirt to survive. Tiny elite controls wealth in impoverished nation; food prices up 40%

· Abramoff fallout has lobbying industry close to crisis

· Attorney General Michael Mukasey still won't say whether waterboarding is torture, a stance that is upsetting Senate Democrats who had threatened to derail his confirmation over the issue. Mukasey's refusal to define waterboarding as illegal could provoke hostile questioning during a scheduled appearance Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee. It was to be his first appearance there since being sworn in Nov. 9 and comes on the heels of a letter sent to the panel's chairman signaling he will not ever publicly conclude that waterboarding is illegal.

· The city that popularized the fast food drive-thru has a new innovation: 24-hour medical marijuana vending machines. Patients suffering from chronic pain, loss of appetite and other ailments that marijuana is said to alleviate can get their pot with a dose of convenience at the Herbal Nutrition Center, where a large machine will dole out the drug around the clock.

· Mets, Twins Agree on Johan Santana Trade


NEPA News:

· CV: The gruesome discovery of a severed head and dismembered body discarded in trash bags along two Northeastern Pennsylvania interstates launched a massive investigation that was still widening late Tuesday.

· TL: Remains found off highways. Eight bags with human parts, including a head, were found scattered on I-380 and I-80.

· Catholic teachers will hold rally for union rights

· Coroner will resign school director post. Luzerne County Coroner John Corcoran will resign as a Wilkes-Barre Area school director after the state Ethics Commission in Harrisburg ruled Tuesday he could not serve in both capacities.

· Wilkes-Barre/Scranton unemployment rate rises to 5.3 percent. In what could be the early rumblings of an anticipated recession, December seasonally-adjusted unemployment in the region increased seven-tenths of a percentage point to 5.3 percent.


Democracy NOW! DISH channels 9410 & 9415, DirecTV channel 275:

Democracy NOW! gives in-depth coverage on THREE of Bush's SOTU (Shit Of The Union) speech: Working Poor, Surge/Iran, & granting immunity to the telecom industry for spying on us:

1. Working Poor

Kathleen Newman & Barbara Ehrenreich: Bush Has Ignored the Working Poor and Failed to Address Growing Economic Inequality

During last night’s State of the Union, President Bush pushed for Congress to approve a $150 billion economic stimulus. Newman and Ehrenreich examine how Bush’s plan fails to help most homeowners facing foreclosures and fails to expand benefits for the poor such as unemployment insurance or food stamp allotment.

DN! transcript or DN! video

2. Surge/Iran

Bush Touts Outcome of Iraq Troop “Surge,” Repeats Threats Against Iran

In his final state of the union, President Bush once again defended the Iraq invasion and claimed the so-called troop surge a success. Bush also repeated his threatening rhetoric against Iran. We speak with unembedded journalist Dahr Jamail and Iraqi blogger Raed Jarrar.

DN! transcript or DN! video

3. granting immunity to the telecom industry for spying on us:

Bush Urges Congress to Grant Immunity to Major Telecom Corporations & Permanently OK Warrantless Domestic Surveillance

As the Senate continues to debate the domestic spy legislation, we speak to Glenn Greenwald, author of A Tragic Legacy: How a Good vs. Evil Mentality Destroyed the Bush Presidency.

DN! transcript or DN! video

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Big Dan's Big News Jan 29, 2008

(Bush looks "uneasy" around a maimed American soldier at Walter Reed Hospital, compliments of his "War of Lies")

· State of the Union Speech 2008, And Other Signs Our Long National Nightmare May Someday End. UPDATE: Republicanist Fox 'News' Dis 'Democrat Response'. ALSO: Feingold's Response to Bush's SOTU, Says 'Congress Must Stand Up' to 'Bully' Bush.

· Dem response: Last five years have cost us dearly

· You MUST go here, to get all the facts about Bush's SOTU (State of the Union, or SHIT of the Union speech)

· Bush lays out a modest agenda for his final year. President Bush used his final State of the Union address to launch what the White House called "a sprint to the finish," but his modest agenda made it clear that his dismal political standing and a wary Democratic Congress prohibit grand ambitions for his final year in office.

· Beginning of the END!

Bush's 2007 "Shit of the Union" Speech:


· Senate blocks GOP move to expand FISA, grant immunity

· Senate blocks GOP move to expand FISA, grant immunity

· Wal-Mart Pushing Suppliers For RFID

· Questions unfolding throughout New Hampshire

· Republican New Hampshire primary candidate Albert Howard, whose election contest hand count is currently ongoing in Concord, once again demonstrates how to call for a legitimate and reconcilable "recount." He has just sent us a copy of the following letter, which was hand delivered to NH Secretary of State Bill Gardner earlier today

· Rove Passes Up Commencement Speech at Choate After the Students Object

· Musharraf rejects CIA bid to hunt Taliban

· IMF head in shock fiscal warning

· Don't treat the old and unhealthy, say doctors

· Bush orders NSA to snoop on US agencies

· The Twilight of Democracy: The Bush Plan for America

· Former immigration officials rap $5 million Moussaoui reward. Two retired U.S. immigration officials who helped supervise the investigation of Zacarias Moussaoui have sharply criticized the government's $5 million reward to a flight instructor who shared what he knew about the al Qaida operative, with one calling it "obscene."


Monday, January 28, 2008

Guy Who Killed A Million People Dies @ Age 86

Democracy NOW! DISH channels 9410 & 9415, DirecTV channel 275:

Former Indonesian Dictator, U.S. Ally & Mass Murderer, Suharto, 86, Dies

Today a Democracy Now! special – an in-depth look at Suharto’s brutal 30-year reign and the role of the United States in shoring him up. Suharto rose to power in 1965 killing up to a million Indonesians. Hundreds of thousands of more people died during the U.S.-supported Indonesian invasion and occupation of East Timor. Tens of thousands also died in West Papua and Aceh. On Sunday, Christopher Hume, U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia, said “Though there may be some controversy over his legacy, President Suharto was a historic figure who left a lasting imprint on Indonesia and the region of Southeast Asia.”

DN! transcript or DN! video

· Chris Floyd: Singing for Suharto: The Lasting Values of the Great and Good: One of the most bloodthirsty dictators of the 20th century -- who killed up to a million of his own people, then ruthlessly raped a defenseless country, took it over and killed 200,000 more -- died last week. The Bush Administation's reaction was swift, and entirely characteristic of a government that has devoted itself to the advancement of human liberty across the globe: They sang the mass murderer a hymn of praise.

· Raw Story: US hails Suharto as a 'historic figure'

· Accountability for Suharto's Crimes Must Not Die With Him

Big Dan's Big News Jan 28, 2008

(Hey! It's nice and warm in here! I think I'll take a nap...I hope that darn dog isn't around here anywhere!)

· COLLATERAL TV: New Hampshire & E-Voting 101 (video about e-vote machines)

· Liz Cheney joins Team Romney

· Snubbing Bill, Kennedy backs Obama

· The wait continues for 9/11 responder aid. Rescue worker with severe respiratory problems to sit in on Bush's Monday speech.

· Former FBI agent turned whistleblower, Sibel Edmonds, has claimed that a senior official in the U.S. State Department tipped off a foreign contact to a CIA investigative cover during an investigation into a nuclear spy ring.

· Is the Bush Administration Trying to Take Down Fannie Mae? Corporate Accountability and WorkPlace: The government-backed lender is embroiled in a murky battle.

· Kucinich's exclusion from debates shows glare of media influence

· Latest Liberty News (takes a while to load)

· Should Nursing Homes Be for Profit? Corporate Accountability and WorkPlace: Is it right that people are trying to make money off taking care of our most vulnerable population?

· "Jackasses with Guns": Mercenaries
War on Iraq: Thousands of serious allegations of crimes in Iraq and only one mercenary has been prosecuted.

· Michael Savage's Hate Speech Catches up with Him. MediaCulture: Major firms are pulling their advertising from Savage's radio show following a campaign highlighting his inflammatory rhetoric.

· Shell & Exxon-Mobil Prepare To Announce Record Profits

· Olbermann: I’d Sacrifice My Personal Success For A ‘Responsible Presidency’

· Indonesia's former dictator Suharto, an army general who crushed Indonesia's communist movement and pushed aside the country's founding father to usher in 32 years of tough rule that saw up to a million political opponents killed, died today. He was 86.

· Because Barbara Bush taught him to "use your words, George," her son the president, rather than actually mooning some Senate Democrats at the joint session of Congress on Monday night as he would like to do, will instead call them terrorist-lovers for refusing to give retroactive immunity to lawbreaking telecoms in the FISA bill, and he will call them partisan obstructionists for wanting to extend unemployment benefits in the economic stimulus bill now pending.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Big Dan's Big News Jan 27, 2008

· Gagged Whistleblower Sibel Edmonds claims Marc Grossman, the former #3 State Department official under Powell and Armitage, tipped off Turkish agents that Valerie Plame Wilson's "Brewster Jennings" was actually a CIA counter-proliferation operation tracking the sale of nuclear secrets to the foreign black market; Grossman was collecting bribe money for tipping them off. Sibel Edmonds worked for the FBI as a Turkish translator at the time, and witnessed all of this...and our government gagged her from talking about it. The British newspapers are reporting all of this. Who is telling the entire corporate-controlled press not to cover this story? And why isn't our government throwing these people in jail and/or investigating this?(bd: ...and so-called "progressive" blogs!)

· Brad Blog has been covering this story for years, click here for a recap of the Sibel Edmonds story!

· DANIEL ELLSBERG EXCLUSIVE: Covering Up the Coverage - The American Media's Complicit Failure to Investigate and Report on the Sibel Edmonds Case

· Former FBI agent turned whistleblower, Sibel Edmonds, has claimed that a senior official in the U.S. State Department tipped off a foreign contact to a CIA investigative cover during an investigation into a nuclear spy ring.


· THE NEW HAMPSHIRE CHAIN OF CUSTODY SHAM (bd: This bears repeating!)

· Bookmark…GODDAMMIT!!!!!!!!!!

· The "seals" are not seals. The "chain of custody" is not a chain of custody. Ballots being transported by the "state police" are actually transported by Butch and Hoppy, who are not employed by the state police. Butch and Hoppy's real names are not really Butch and Hoppy.

· Barack Obama Buries Hillary Clinton in South Carolina (bd: So, the south isn't racist, but New Hampshire is racist? Maybe "the count" on e-vote machines was WRONG in New Hampshire! Wouldn't you think there'd be MORE racists in South Carolina than New Hampshire?)

· VOTE FRAUD EVIDENCE PILES UP. Poll watchers, vote counters amazed at brazen incidents of vote thievery play.


· Another Neocon Attempt to Frame Iran Falls Apart. War on Iraq: Last time it was scary speed-boats, this time it's a bogus link to a bombing in Argentina -- one by one, Iran hawks' lies keep unraveling.

· Recent statements coming from one of Russia’s highest-ranking military commanders indicate that America and Israel plan to go ahead with war on Iran despite the release of the National Intelligence Estimate late last year. Russia’s military chief of staff General Yuri Baluyevsky threatened the use of nuclear weapons in case of a major threat. He said that, although they have no plans of attacking anyone, they nevertheless “consider it necessary for everyone around the world community to clearly understand, that to defend the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Russia and its allies, military forces will be used, including, preventively, the use of nuclear weapons.”

· The annual March for Life has come and gone. One of its more bizarre qualities is the way GOP presidents participate: by recorded message or telephone hook-up, but never in person. This began during Ronald Reagan's presidency. (bd: This is what I've been saying! Republicans do NOT want to stop abortion! They had a chance from 2000-2006, when they controlled the House, the Senate, the President, and the courts. And they didn't do it...WAKE UP CONSERVATIVES! THEY FUCKED YOU! The Republican Party has NO INTENTION OF EVER GETTING RID OF ABORTION!)

· Impeachment: No More Investigations Please ! Kidnapping innocent people, denying justice to prisoners, torturing, murdering, circumventing U.S. and international law...

· Raging Violence Kills 69 In Kenya

· Bush to urge economic stimulus, wiretapping powers in State of the Union address. President Bush gets what may be his final chance to steer the public debate Monday night in his last State of the Union address. With his aides privately acknowledging that the moments when Bush can be relevant are dwindling fast, the president is expected to press for a shortened list of proposals.

· Florida "Letters To Editor" calls for Impeachment

· Family Values Thrice-Divorced Fat Nazi Lying Fascist multi-millionaire Rush Limbaugh finds girl who loves those attributes...especially the "multi-millionaire" part...

· Memo: Giuliani ignored warnings about WTC7

· Resegregation of American schools is deepening

· Brattleboro residents will vote at town meeting on whether President George Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney should be indicted and arrested for war crimes, perjury or obstruction of justice if they ever step foot in Vermont.

· Defunct Spy Satellite Falling From Orbit, Could Hit Earth in Late February or March

· Leahy And Cornyn: White House Trying To ‘Eliminate’ FOIA Office

· The Center for Public Integrity has compiled an infinitely searchable catalog of the 935 lies told by the president and seven other top administration officials in order to instigate war between the United States and Iraq. These deliberate (and in most cases, scripted) lies were told over a two-year period and were built on two basic fictional building blocks: [1] that Iraq threatened us with weapons of mass destruction, and [2] that Iraq supported al Qaeda and therefore bore responsibility for the attacks of September 11, 2001. In the intelligence community, and in the well-informed segment of the general populace, both claims were widely known to be false, yet they were used and re-used and denied and debunked and embroidered and pasted together and used and re-used again, until the Mission was Accomplished and the United States was involved in a foreign war it couldn't get out of.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Big Dan's Big News Jan 26, 2008

(Pa. Governor Ed Rendell)

· Pennsylvania Governor Rendell Offers Coverage to 29,000 People and Calls for Health Care for All

· Catholic teachers union takes case to Rome. Bruised by the Union-Busting Scranton Diocese’s decision to deny recognition of their organization, the teachers union is planning to appeal their case to the Vatican.

· Public Outcry Keeps Hormone Milk Labels in PA

· Voters in SC Encouraged to Print Out Their Own Ballots Before Going to Polls

· According to the Gloucester Times Daily ES&S has told its customers in MA that "the firm's software 'will not meet federal standards and can't be modified to meet those standards.'"

· A representative of Republican Albert Howard's New Hampshire hand count called this morning to say that, without giving any specific details, the NH SoS office informed them today that "We're gonna have to stop the recount for a couple of days" next week. No reason, other than "legislative business" was given.

· Bloody Reality and the Delusions of Bush, Robert Fisk, Independent UK. ForeignPolicy: Is this how lame-duck American presidents are supposed to behave?

· Dramatic Voices of Dissent: Celebrities Film. The actors in this four-part TV series are more of a social movement than a cast.

· Egypt takes new tack to send Palestinians back to Gaza. At least 36 Egyptian security forces have been injured, some of them critically, in clashes at the chaotic border with the Gaza Strip, Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit told journalists here today.

· Polls point to a Barack Obama victory in South Carolina's primary Saturday, but the Rev. Larry McCutcheon isn't so sure. The pastor of Orangeburg's Trinity United Methodist Church finds "most of the people I talk to are trying to choose" between Obama and Hillary Clinton.

· Following 9/11, President Bush and seven top officials of his administration waged a carefully orchestrated campaign of misinformation about the threat posed by Saddam Hussein's Iraq. President George W. Bush and seven of his administration's top officials, including Vice President Dick Cheney, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, made at least 935 false statements in the two years following September 11, 2001, about the national security threat posed by Saddam Hussein's Iraq. Nearly five years after the U.S. invasion of Iraq, an exhaustive examination of the record shows that the statements were part of an orchestrated campaign that effectively galvanized public opinion and, in the process, led the nation to war under decidedly false pretenses.

· Never in history has a story been so slanted as that of Palestine and Israel. Never has the victim been so squarely blamed for his own misfortunes as the Palestinian. This is not an arrogant counter-narrative to Israel's concoctions. It's a glaring truth that continues to be either ignored or misunderstood.

· The military adventurers of the Bush administration have much in common with the corporate leaders of the defunct energy company Enron. Both groups of men thought that they were the "smartest guys in the room," the title of Alex Gibney's prize-winning film on what went wrong at Enron. The neoconservatives in the White House and the Pentagon outsmarted themselves. They failed even to address the problem of how to finance their schemes of imperialist wars and global domination.

· Busted: NY Times fudges its stance on Iraq war

· Firefighters tell Florida Security Moms: Rudy hired 'unqualified yes men'

· President Hugo Chavez on Friday accused neighboring Colombia and the United States of plotting a military "aggression" against Venezuela.

· Campus newspaper writes editorial urging the school to reject Rove speech.

· Three New York agencies sued Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Citigroup Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co. and 23 more underwriters for allegedly helping Countrywide Financial Corp. to defraud investors.

· Little in Jerome Kerviel's background suggested he would become possibly the biggest rogue trader of all time. And the big question remains: What led him to orchestrate what France's second-largest bank describes as massive, fraudulent trades that cost it more than $7 billion?

· Stocks end volatile week with sharp decline
Wall Street ended a tumultuous week with a sharp decline Friday, backtracking following two days of stunning gains as investors turned cautious and cashed in some of their gains.

· State of Union: Economy is key. Bush will lobby for stimulus plan and may call for more measures to ease housing crunch and cut corporate tax rates. On Saturday he reiterated his hope that the bill will pass swiftly.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Big Dan's Big News Jan 25, 2008

· New Hampshire Sec. of State Appears to Lie to Media About Kucinich Hand Count. Bill Gardner Says 'Kucinich Satisfied With Recount' When Letter from Congressman to SoS Says Otherwise...

· EXCLUSIVE: Kucinich Letter Cites Miscounts in NH, Requests State Carry Out 'Complete and Accurate Recount of All Ballots'. Democratic Presidential Candidate Details 'Significant Percentage Variances,' from 4 to 10%, Discovered So Far During Hand Counts as Paid for by His Campaign. SoS Downplays Mistallies After One County Counted: No Changes 'As Far as Where the Candidates Finished'...

· Following on our report last Saturday of massive voting machine failures that kept voters from voting for hours in Horry County, SC, Kitty Pilgrim, on CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight (video), reported yesterday on plans for SC to use the same machines again in this Saturday's Democratic primary.

· Conspiracy Theorist. Why would anybody cheat in an election?

New Hampshire Primary - Breakdown of chain of custody

We have collected over 20 hours of video taken by six different people. It will tell much of the story of the New Hampshire recount.

After some thought, I think the best way to do this is with as little editing as possible, to allow viewers to reach their own conclusions based on what they see. I will organize clips into uniform topics and will keep them short, with a few captions to provide context.

· The New Hampshire Chain of Custody Sham


· Immigration officials detaining, deporting American citizens. Thomas Warziniack was born in Minnesota and grew up in Georgia, but immigration authorities pronounced him an illegal immigrant from Russia.

· Kucinich drops presidential bid

· Give Them Death: Three Leading Democratic Candidates Support Capital Punishment. Rights and Liberties: Opposing the death penalty used to distinguish Democrats from Republicans. Now, across party lines, death is just another day at the office.

· Supreme Court considers voter id law in Indiana

· Is the Bush Stimulus Going to Help You? Corporate Accountability and WorkPlace: There's a national economy, and then there's a "people's economy." Guess which one will see more "relief."

· Immigration officials detaining, deporting American citizens. The story of how immigration officials decided that a small-town drifter with a Southern accent was an illegal Russian immigrant illustrates how the federal government mistakenly detains and sometimes deports American citizens.

· Exxon guns for all-time profit record. Surging crude prices could help the oil giant post the biggest bottom line ever for a U.S. firm; refining margins, rising costs could get in the way.($75,000/minute)

· Gas Prices Up, Globe Still Warming and ExxonMobil Earnings Soar

· Bush: Bin Laden Will Be ‘Gotten By A President’ (But Probably Not This One)

· Supremes: OK to fire medical pot users. Rationale: Cannabis, even used for medical reasons, is illegal on a federal level.

· Ron Paul unveils economic plan

· Bush redefining Iraq role, next president must pay for it

· Documentary highlights detainee abuses in Iraq, Afghanistan; "'Soldiers are dying. Get the information.' That's all you're told: Get the information." --Pfc. Damien Corsetti; "Taxi To The Dark Side"

Scranton Diocese UNION-BUSTING!!! Scranton Diocese to enforce employee relations program. The Diocese of Scranton will not recognize the teachers union as a collective bargaining unit, the diocese announced Thursday.


Democracy NOW! DISH channels 9410 & 9415, DirecTV channel 275:

Broadcast Exclusive: Abu Ghraib Whistleblower Samuel Provance Speaks Out on Torture and Cover-Up at U.S. Military Jail

In a national TV broadcast exclusive, we spend the hour with Abu Ghraib whistleblower and former Army sergeant Samuel Provance. From September 2003 to the spring of 2004 Provance ran the top secret computer network used by military intelligence at Abu Ghraib. He was the first intelligence specialist to speak openly about abuse at the prison and is the only military intelligence soldier listed as a witness in the Taguba report. Among the abuses he lists is the torture of a 16 year-old Iraqi boy in order to make his father talk. After Provance spoke out, the Army stripped him of his security clearance, demoted him and threatened him with ten years in jail.

DN! video

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Vigo From Ghostbuster's II (Fred Thompson) Drops Out Of Presidential Race

Actor Fred Thompson (left) as "Vigo" the evil Carpathian in "Ghostbuster's II" (right).

Actor/Republican politician Fred Thompson showed the most energy he's shown so far during his bid to win the Republican nomination for '08 president, by waking up from his bed, announcing that he's dropping out of the race, then rolling back over and going back to sleep. The low-energy, "folksie" Thompson, whom Richard Nixon once called "dumb as hell", is known for acting in the series "Law & Order", filling in for Nazi media propagandist Paul Harvey, and playing the evil Carpathian "Vigo" in the movie "Ghostbusters II".

Ghostbusters vs Vigo the carpathian (yeah! i know! it's in another language! just watch this and then watch the next one! this one's short! but it's the only one i could find! so shut up and watch it!)

The Ghostbusters vs. the evil Fred Thompson aka "Vigo the Carpathian":


Fred Thompson blogging about stepping down from the presidential race:

"It ain’t no eclipse, it’s my head blockin the sunset as I ride off"

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Big Dan's Big News Jan 24, 2008

(click on picture to see enlarged chart)

· 'Funds Ran Out': Kucinich Hand Count Stops in NH; Republican Albert Howard's NH Hand Count Set to Begin Thursday

· EXCLUSIVE: Kucinich Letter Cites Miscounts in NH, Requests State Carry Out 'Complete and Accurate Recount of All Ballots'. Democratic Presidential Candidate Details 'Significant Percentage Variances,' from 4 to 10%, Discovered So Far During Hand Counts as Paid for by His Campaign. SoS Downplays Mistallies After One County Counted: No Changes 'As Far as Where the Candidates Finished'...

· Big Rate Cuts and Fiscal Stimulus Trump Conservative Ideology

· Going Bankrupt: Why the Debt Crisis Is America's Greatest Threat. Welcome to 2008, a year of morally obscene, fiscally unsustainable spending. Watch as the military bloats and our standard of living sinks.

· One Step Closer to a Cheney Impeachment. Rights and Liberties: More than a third of the House Judiciary Committee's Democratic members want to see Cheney ousted.

· Freedom for Gaza (but for one day only). Hole in the wall provides relief from misery of Israeli blockade

· Kucinich Starts New Impeachment Drive

· Top Dems stall Miers, Bolten contempt vote; blame "crashing economy" for selling out Democratic voters and all Americans again

· Senator Dodd renews call against telecom immunity

· On January 11, 2008, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released the final regulations for the implementation of the REAL ID Act, the flawed plan to create a national identity card system.

· Getting cash to Americans for an economic boost won't be easy. As Congress and the White House craft an economic stimulus package, there's growing concern that it can't be enacted and implemented quickly enough to forestall a recession.

· Even as stocks ended five days of losses with a surprising recovery on Wednesday, officials began moving to defuse another potential time bomb in the markets: the weakened condition of two large insurance companies that have guaranteed buyers against losses on more than $1 trillion of bonds.Regulators fear a possible chain of events in which the troubled bond insurers, MBIA and Ambac, might be unable to keep their promise to pay investors if borrowers default on their debt. That could leave the buyers of the bonds — including many banks and pension funds — on the hook for untold billions of dollars in losses, shaking confidence in the financial system.

· Ford Motor Company said it would take further cost-cutting actions on its home turf, including offering buyouts to all of its unionized work force.

· Sallie Mae, the embattled student lender, said Wednesday it lost $1.6 billion in the fourth quarter as borrowing costs rose and it set aside $575 million to cover bad loans.


Democracy NOW! DISH channels 9410 & 9415, DirecTV channel 375 (bd: YOU have it! If you have DISH or DirecTV!!! PUT IT ON!!!!!!)

935 Lies (and Counting):

Study Documents Bush Admin’s False Statements Preceding Iraq War

A new study from the Center for Public Integrity has revealed President Bush and top administration officials made a total of 935 false public statements about Iraq’s alleged national security threat in the two years following the 9/11 attacks. President Bush made the most false statements – 260. Colin Powell, his then secretary of state, made 254 false statements. We speak with the founder of the Center for Public Integrity, Charles Lewis.

DN! video (click here)

· White House "SpokesLiar" Dana Perino Dismisses CPI Study: Truth On How We Sold The Iraq War Is Not ‘Worth Spending Time On’

· A study by two nonprofit journalism organizations found that President Bush and top administration officials issued hundreds of false statements about the national security threat from Iraq in the two years following the 2001 terrorist attacks. The study concluded that the statements "were part of an orchestrated campaign that effectively galvanized public opinion and, in the process, led the nation to war under decidedly false pretenses." The study was posted Tuesday on the Web site of the Center for Public Integrity, which worked with the Fund for Independence in Journalism.


Michael Savage spews vicious anti-Muslim hate speech on his national radio show.


"90 percent of the people on the Nobel Committee are into child pornography and molestation, according to the latest scientific studies"

Savage advocating "kill[ing] 100 million" Muslims

Savage on immigrant students' hunger strike: "[L]et them fast until they starve to death. ... Go make a bomb where you came from"

Citing more sex-change operations, increased lesbian fertility clinics, Savage said of 9-11: "That was God speaking"

On MLK Day, Savage called civil rights a "racket" designed to steal "white males' birthright"

To "save the United States," lawmakers should institute "outright ban on Muslim immigration" and on "the construction of mosques"

U.S. Senate "more vicious and more histrionic than ever, specifically because women have been injected into" it

"Jimmy Carter is like Hitler"

"Burn the Mexican Flag!"

Savage on the tsunami: "I wouldn't call it a tragedy. ... We shouldn't be spending a nickel on this"

4 Pairs Of Pants

I have the whole "pants" thing knocked! Going forward, I will only own 4 pair of pants: 2 tan, and 2 gray. Period! That's it! For the rest of my life, I will only purchase a pair of pants to replace the 4 pair I own.

Where I work, Friday's are "dress down day", so you can wear blue jeans. Blue jeans aren't pants, btw... So, I only need 4 pair of pants for Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. I'll wash my 2 tan and 2 gray pair of pants on the weekends.

I'm not buying any other colors except tan and gray. They match everything. I'll stagger them so people think I have lots of pants. For example, one week I'll wear tan-gray-tan-gray. The next week I'll switch it to get the picture.

They have to have flex waistbands, too. They're comfortable, I like them. It's like you're not even wearing pants.

I came to the realization that blue and black pants suck. They're too dark. Green pants are out of the picture! As well as all other colors.

So, that's it! I have the "pants" thing knocked! The picture you see above is/will be my entire pants wardrobe for the rest of my life! I'll replace those 4 pair of pants "as needed", like if they start to disintegrate.

Now, for shirts and shoes.......hmmmmmm.......

Hey! I'm just trying to simplify my life! I started with pants!

Big Dan's Big News Jan 23, 2008

· Just in...Marc Grossman, who has been named in the Sibel Edmonds case as allegedly receiving bribes from Turkish and Israeli agents and warning the Turkish Embassy to stay away from Valerie Plame Wilson's "Brewster Jennings" front company, will be testifying tomorrow morning (Wed.) before a sub-committee of Henry Waxman's House Oversight committee.

· Study: Bush, Other Officials Issued Hundreds of False Statements Before Iraq Invasion

· CREW has completed an analysis of the national news events that took place on the dates for which there are missing White House email.

· Nine out of 23 Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee favor starting impeachment hearings against Vice-President Dick Cheney. Six of the nine are co-sponsors of H.R. 799, which contains three articles of impeachment. Articles I and II of H.R. 799 accuse Cheney of purposely manipulating intelligence to deceive Congress and the American people about a fabricated threat of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, and about an alleged relationship between Iraq and al Qaeda, respectively. Article III charges Cheney with openly threatening aggression against Iran absent any real threat to the United States . All three articles say Cheney's actions have damaged our national security interests.

· Oil companies grab lion's share of money spent at the pump

· Fed saves economic day, but uncertainty continues. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke averted a Black Tuesday on Wall Street, heading off what had seemed certain to be a massive stock sell-off with an unprecedented cut to the Fed's benchmark lending rate of three-quarters of a percentage point, to 3.5 percent.

· Firefighter: Giuliani 'ran like a coward on 9/11'

· The full picture of what happened inside the White House in the days after Saddam Hussein's capture may be lost forever because of improper record keeping by the Bush administration that has caused millions of e-mails to be lost.

· No Questions On Global Warming Asked At CNN’s Coal Industry-Sponsored Presidential Debates

· Petraeus: I Need Another Six Months To Determine Whether ‘We’ve Reached A Turning Point’

· Conservative bloggers fretting over their keyboards. Can a Republican candidate feel the voters’ economic pain without betraying their free market faith?

· Amy Z. Quinn on the writer's strike: "This democracy's making me thirsty!"

· Tens of thousands of Palestinians poured from the Gaza Strip into Egypt Wednesday after masked gunmen with explosives destroyed most of the seven-mile wall dividing the border town of Rafah. Gazans crossed on foot, in cars or in donkey carts to buy cigarettes, fuel, and other items made scarce by an Israeli blockade of their impoverished territory. Across the coastal strip, home to 1.5 million Palestinians, people pushed into buses and piled into rickety pickup trucks heading to Egypt and a rare opportunity to escape months of isolation.

· Heath Ledger turned down more teen movies after starring in the romantic comedy "10 Things I Hate About You," waiting for the kinds of grueling, intense roles that would become his trademark. The decision set him on a career path toward "Brokeback Mountain" - the film that earned him an Oscar nomination.

· The European Union, Israel's largest trade partner in the world, is watching by as Israel tightens its barbaric siege on Gaza, collectively punishing 1.5 million Palestinian civilians, condemning them to devastation, and visiting imminent death upon hundreds of kidney dialysis and heart patients, prematurely born babies, and all others dependent on electric power for their very survival.

Democracy NOW! DISH channels 9410 & 9415, DirecTV channel 375:

As Gaza Plunges into Darkness, Israeli and Palestinian Fighters-Turned-Peace-Activists Speak Out

The United Nations is accusing Israel of collectively punishing the Palestinian population in Gaza by cutting off fuel supplies as part of a blockade of the Gaza Strip. In the midst of the deepening crisis, we speak with Israeli and Palestinian peace activists Yonatan Shapira and Bassam Aramin. They are from a group called Combatants for Peace that is made up of former fighters from both Israel and the Occupied Territories. (bd: This group is receiving ZERO coverage in the corporate-controlled mainstream media!) Shapira is a former captain in the Israeli Air Force and Black Hawk pilot squadron. Aramin was an armed member of Fatah and spent seven years in an Israeli prison. His ten-year-old daughter Abir was shot dead by an Israeli soldier last year.

DN! transcript or DN! video

Economics Journalist Robert Kuttner on the “Most Serious Financial Crisis Since the Great Depression”: “This is the Result of Rightwing Ideology and the Political Power of Wall Street”

Amid growing fears of a worldwide recession, the Federal Reserve slashed a key interest rate by three-quarters of a percentage point on Tuesday, the biggest single cut in nearly a quarter of a century. Meanwhile, President Bush and congressional leaders pledged to work together on a stimulus measure that would inject about $150 billion in additional money into the economy. But many economists are skeptical over whether any measures can turn around a severe slump in the housing market and the subprime mortgage crisis, signs of growing unemployment and weakening consumer spending and the added blow of record high oil prices. We speak to veteran economics journalist Robert Kuttner and Robert Weissman, co-director of the corporate accountability group Essential Action and editor of Multinational Monitor magazine.

DN! transcript or DN! video

Folksinger John McCutcheon: "Hail To The Chief":