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Rudy's Florida "Firewall"?

Florida is the "firewall" in former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani's presidential bid, according to a Powerpoint presentation made to volunteers of his campaign in the Sunshine State and obtained by The Fix.

"Florida is the firewall" proclaims the second slide of the presentation which, by in large, is aimed at outlining the goals of Giuliani's effort in the state -- which is slated to hold a primary on Jan. 29. The slide goes on to highlight two press reports: the first, from the Associated Press, notes that Giuliani has "adopted an unorthodox campaign itinerary....lavishing attention on Florida."; the second, from the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, points out that "Giuliani's strategy is to win delegate rich Florida to catapult him." The next slide notes that Giuliani's average lead in national polling is seven points but his average lead in Florida is 14 points.

Tony Carbonetti, a senior adviser to the campaign, dismissed the idea that Giuliani viewed Florida as a make or break moment for his bid. "Florida's the firewall, New Jersey's the firewall, Connecticut's the firewall, New York's the firewall," said Carbonetti. He added that the document was put together by state staff, not national staff, in order to "motivate our volunteers."

Although Giuliani's campaign has made clear that the states set to vote on Feb. 5, 2008, which include New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, California and Illinois, are likely to strongly favor their candidate, they insist that the former Mayor is also running hard in traditional early voting states like Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina.

Nonetheless, the slide show does suggest that the Giuliani campaign believes Florida will play a central role in determining the identity of the Republican nominee.

And, while most of the rest of the document is rah-rah sort of stuff, there are some glimpses into Giuliani's broader Florida strategy in the document.

In a slide entitled "Opportunities to get involved", a list of "key coalitions" is provided that includes: "former Yankees" (we assume that means ex-northerners, not the actual Pinstripers), first responders, volunteer firefighters and, The Fix's personal favorite, Italian Americans.

On a slide titled "Our Plan for Victory" there are handwritten notes that read "go after congressional districts" and "Miami -- key city". As we noted in a story for washingtonpost.com's "Fast Track Campaign" series, Florida is one of several large states that splits its delegate apportionment between the winners of each congressional district and the winner of the statewide vote. Win the entire state of Florida and you get 39 total delegates. But, 75 delegates are up for grabs in the congressional districts -- three for each of the 25 seats.

A "volunteer phone script" is also included in the Powerpoint. The first question asks respondents who their first choice is to be president -- giving them five options: Giuliani, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney , Sen. John McCain (Ariz.), former Sen. Fred Thompson (Tenn.), former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (Ga.) or "one of the other candidates."


The callers are also asked to rate their level of commitment to a candidate with "zero being completely uncommitted, meaning you could change your mind at any time -- or ten, being extremely committed, and there is no chance you will ever change your mind."

Callers are also asked which candidate they would never support, and to rank economic issues, social issues and "keeping us safe" in order of importance.

By Chris Cillizza  |  August 28, 2007; 12:15 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Comments

Rudy is corrupt.

Posted by: R. Ali | September 25, 2007 8:43 PM | Report abuse

RUDY IS A CFR MAN AND IS BOUGH AND PAYED FOR BY THE GLOBAL ELITE, A VOTE FOR RUDY IS A VOTE FOR NAFTA SUPER HIGHWAY AND THE NORTH AMERICAN UNION.

Posted by: RICHARD SHADE | September 3, 2007 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Whether you like Rudy or not - if he makes it through the Republican primary he is very likely to become the next President of the United States. Democrats seem to like Hillary but i do not think many independents or Republicans will vote for her. I think Obama may fair better with independents but will not likely get through the primary. The real question is - will the Republican base lean to the left in order to secure the White House in 08 ?

Posted by: common sense | August 30, 2007 9:33 PM | Report abuse

I'm honestly perplexed by Rudy's strategy. He's going after all of the delegate rich states, traditionally won by democrats in the general election, to win the Republican nomination. His only hope seems to be if there is a major split in the GOP nominating race. If F. Thompson and Romney split up the vote, then Rudy has a real shot. If F. Thompson decides against running, as I'm beginning to think he will, I think McCain will re-surge (no pun intended) back into the top tier. If it comes down to Guiliani vs. Romney or F. Thompson, he's dead in the water. But if it's Guiliani vs. Romney vs. McCain or Fred Thompson, Guiliani will be in good shape and have a real shot at the nomination. Either way, Romney is in and is running the best campaign in the race. So Guiliani must hope a 3rd top tier joins them before voting begins, or Romney will walk away with this nomination. Right now, Mitt Romney is the front runner for the Republican nomination.

Posted by: reason | August 30, 2007 11:15 AM | Report abuse

zouk -- so happy you've met your equal in rufus. actually, he's your intellectual and moral superior and it's quite funny to see him make you look like you idiot you are. most of us don't have the time or the stomach to deal with you and your lies and fascist propaganda.

why aren't you iraq, yellow-bellied chickenhawk coward? why don
t you have a job or a life?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 30, 2007 9:12 AM | Report abuse

A$$hat MikeB: "I don't post links for morons that obviously cannot read to begin with."

So you admit you have nothing to back up your drivel. How surprising that you've been talking out of your bunghole.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | August 29, 2007 10:33 PM | Report abuse

From the propgansidt watchers doing the FCC's job at

www.mediamatters.org

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 7:23 PM | Report abuse

Zouk shows his face as a propogating fascist once again.

"Fox graphics falsely asserted Castro "wants" Clinton-Obama as "dream team"
Summary: During a Fox & Friends segment discussing an August 28 column by Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, on-screen text falsely asserted, "CASTRO'S DREAM TEAM: WANTS CLINTON AND OBAMA IN '08," referring to Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Also during the segment, an on-screen graphic depicted Castro, Clinton, and Obama enclosed in a red heart. In fact, at no point in his column did Castro endorse Clinton or Obama. Indeed, he attributed to Clinton and Obama a pro-democratic view that he called an "error," and he said of Clinton and Obama, "They are not making politics: they are playing a game of cards on a Sunday afternoon."
During the August 29 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, during a segment discussing an August 28 column by Cuban dictator Fidel Castro in the Cuban newspaper Granma, on-screen text falsely asserted, "CASTRO'S DREAM TEAM: WANTS CLINTON AND OBAMA IN '08," referring to Democratic presidential candidates Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton (NY) and Barack Obama (IL). Also during the segment, an on-screen graphic depicted Castro, Clinton, and Obama enclosed in a red heart. In addition, during the August 28 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor, guest host Michelle Malkin previewed an upcoming segment by falsely claiming that "Fidel Castro, of all people, endorses a Hillary Clinton-Barack Obama presidential ticket." Malkin went on to ask, "What is that all about?" In fact, at no point in his column did Castro endorse Clinton or Obama. Indeed, he attributed to Clinton and Obama a pro-democratic view that he called an "error," and he said of Clinton and Obama, "They are not making politics: they are playing a game of cards on a Sunday afternoon."

From Castro's column:

Today, talk is about the seemingly invincible ticket that might be created with Hillary for President and Obama for Vice President. Both of them feel the sacred duty of demanding "a democratic government in Cuba". They are not making politics: they are playing a game of cards on a Sunday afternoon.

The media declares that this would be essential, unless Gore decides to run. I don't think he will do so; better than anyone, he knows about the kind of catastrophe that awaits humanity if it continues along its current course. When he was a candidate, he of course committed the error of yearning for "a democratic Cuba".

Enough of tales and nostalgia. This is written simply to increase the conscience of the Cuban people.
"

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 7:22 PM | Report abuse

Details about the achievements of the 110th:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/26/opinion/26mann.html

Rep. Ray LaHood (R-Ill.): "Democrats can send their members home crowing about their accomplishments, and they've done it in a bipartisan way, which is exactly what they promised to do."

Living a fact-based existence is hard and sometimes melancholy but overall it beats la-la land as a means of advancing the species.

Posted by: roo | August 29, 2007 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Loudmouth voter - I don't post links for morons that obviously cannot read to begin with. As the Bible says, "Cast not your pearls before swine."

Posted by: MikeB | August 29, 2007 7:17 PM | Report abuse

One more from A$$hat MikeB: "You're about as "liberal" as a Nazi, which is pretty typical for you Clinton goose steppers, assorted twits, and mental lightweights."

Please link to even one post in which I claim to be a liberal, you drooling, miserable wretch. You post more strawmen then the most pathetic rightwingnut.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | August 29, 2007 7:11 PM | Report abuse

A$$hat MikeB: "Loudmouth Voter - If you were any dumber, you'd be extinct. You have been blathering on and on about Ms. Clinton and the countries love for Bill for months now."

Oh really, you pathetic turd? Kindly post a few links to such posts from me.

And by the way, nice deflection from the fact that you can't follow a simple thread. LOL What a tool this "Democrat" is.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | August 29, 2007 7:09 PM | Report abuse

Loudmouth Voter - If you were any dumber, you'd be extinct. You have been blathering on and on about Ms. Clinton and the countries love for Bill for months now. When someone tosses it back in your face, you act like some pathetic child who had their candy confiscated. Get a life. You're about as "liberal" as a Nazi, which is pretty typical for you Clinton goose steppers, assorted twits, and mental lightweights.

Posted by: MikeB | August 29, 2007 6:49 PM | Report abuse

"Hillary nomination rallying the GOP base "

That's the gop plan. Thye have no shot and they know it. Have things imporved or worsened for the gop since 06? A lot worse?

Ok. Then why do you think the results will be any differant?

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 6:45 PM | Report abuse

MikeB: "Loudoun Voter - You're even dumber than I thought if you think nominating Hillary Clinton is going to unify Democrats."

Where did I say that, you illiterate "Democrat"? The comment I was responding to was about a Hillary nomination rallying the GOP base -- nothing about Democrats.

Now run along and learn how to read.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | August 29, 2007 6:34 PM | Report abuse

"In a 50-minute interview in his office in Baghdad's Green Zone, Maliki strongly defended his tenure and said that he doesn't expect to be forced out. He said his efforts at national reconciliation, not the surge of additional U.S. troops or actions by Iraqi security forces, are responsible for improved security.

He blamed the United States and its early policies in Iraq for the sectarianism that plagues the country, and said he opposed the current U.S. policy of working with former Sunni Muslim insurgent groups who've turned against al Qaida in Iraq because that, too, promotes sectarianism.
"

Posted by: great news from iraq. It's improving | August 29, 2007 6:33 PM | Report abuse

"BAGHDAD - Iraq's largest Sunni Arab political bloc announced its withdrawal from the government Wednesday, undermining efforts to seek reconciliation among the country's rival factions, and three bombings in Baghdad killed at least 70 people. "

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Home » World News » Conflict in Iraq

1 million Shiite pilgrims forced to leave Karbala
Police abort religious celebration after clashes leave 51 dead, 247 wounded"


You got tow major issues there. Retefiy that. Get SOMe political growth and then you can promote good things. Until that day nothing has changed. You know as I do the goal is not to win the war, but to sustain it. Why? $$$$$$$$

Bush and the gop had no intention of winning this war anytime soon. He has said himself that this will go on for generations. Why? $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$


You are a joke zouk. You are a laughing stock. I can't wait until election day. It's going to be ten times better than christmas. I'm also waiting to see how you fascsits will try and cheat, because you know you will.

No cheating this time. To big or a landslide. You party doesn't have much time left zouk. you are wasting it. You are hurting when you should be helping.

You people have some balls for people tah have done nothing right in 15 years.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 6:30 PM | Report abuse

No Lamont lost. the Kos and haters candidate has never won. there are other losers I can't recall right now. and there will clearly be more.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 6:27 PM | Report abuse

Elsewhere in Iraq, though, progress is extraordinary and unambiguous. I spent a week in Ramadi, the capital of Anbar Province, which just four months ago was the most violent place in Iraq. Al Qaeda had taken over and ruled the city through a massive murder and intimidation campaign. Even the Marine Corps, arguably the least defeatist institution in America, wrote off Ramadi as irretrievably lost last August.

Then, local tribal leaders and civilians joined the Americans - and helped purge the city of every last terrorist cell. Violence has dropped to near zero. I have photographs of Iraqis hugging American soldiers and of children greeting us with ecstatic joy, as though they had been rescued from Nazis. The Marines are even considering going on patrols without body armor.

What worked in Ramadi might not work in Baghdad. The Mahdi Army's relative moderation, compared with Al Qaeda's brutality, prevents it from being rejected by the entire society. But this much cannot be denied: There are powerful winds of change in Iraq, and not enough time has passed to determine how they will transform the country.

Want to know if the surge will succeed or fail? There is only one thing to do: Wait.

http://www.nydailynews.com/opinions/2007/08/29/2007-08-29_frontline_lessons_from_the_iraq_surge.html?print=1


Dems can't afford to wait in case there is a victory. that would spell disaster to their election hopes. but Dems, keep your chins up, maybe a recession will insue. that should cheer you up.

Posted by: good news for US is bad for Libs | August 29, 2007 6:24 PM | Report abuse

"We tolerate no thinking in the hate wing of the Libs. Stick with the program. we will win an election some day."

06?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 6:21 PM | Report abuse

Your points have to actually be better than the next not loader or more malicious. You have to be MORE intellegent in your agruments not less, as your boy's hannity and newt would have you believe.

Their tricks are outdated. The american people now see you propoganda.

What happened is you people showed your face. With Fox you people let non-gop'ers into your world. The world of a madman. Who do you speak to people that only understand martian? Learn MArtian. You people are not humans. You are the borg.

So what happened was you people had a full fascist push. The goal was for a conservative majority. You showed your face hoping it would boost gop numbers. You thought the country would jump of the fascism bandwagon, and the country did for a time. When they thought you people were telling the truth . No more. They see why you people say the things you do. They see why. They see who's paying the bill. They see you as hypocrites. They see you as fascsits.

YOu tried and failed. now get back in the closet for another 50 years. It's where you belong. You don't deserve the throne. The last 30 years have shone that. Where else in the world do you you keep your jobs the worse you do? Only in gop land.

I've seen some crazy stuff out here in reno. It is impossible for gop'ers to get fired by other gop'ers. no matter what you people choose party of country every time. In the business world you choose party over business everytime.

This is the problem with the economy. Gop sabotage at every turn. ME ME ME. Do you know california is the 5th biggest economy IN THE WORLD. You know why. If you do something against the business and for self, YOU ARE FIRED. Something foregin to the gop. That is why we are failing in business in this country. Greed, selfish, fascsits. "be like me, or don't be."

I and we see you know. YOur party has a year and a half of relevance. Point to the d's all you want. The question you should ask yourself is what has the gop done right? If you can't think of anything or very little, why do you think the gop will stay as a dominate party in this country.

What happened to accountability? What happened to morales? What happened to doing what's best of the country, not party?

You people are done. It is your own faults. You are causing my country to crumble. And you know what. Your doing it on purpose. It is intentional. Fascsim will never win the day. Wait and see. I know you don't believe me, even though everything I've told you people is truth.

I guess we'll all have to wait. Just remember what I've ssaid to .

"AND YOUR ACCOUNTED FOR. EVERYTHING THAT YOU HEARD? DO NOT SPEAK TO FOOLS THEY SCORN THE WISDOM OF YOUR WORDS".

Nas

I keep talking so I must think you gop'ers are not fools. only lost souls wasting your lives as slaves to the corporation.

Posted by: RUFUS | August 29, 2007 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Let's compare attorneys general:

-- Civilians killed by Ashcroft: 0
-- Civilians killed by Gonzales: 0
-- Civilians killed by Reno: 80

Reno's military attack on a religious sect in Waco, Texas, led to the greatest number of citizens ever killed by the government in the history of the United States

Number of 6-year-old boys deported to totalitarian dictatorships by Ashcroft: 0
Number of 6-year-old boys deported to totalitarian dictatorships by Gonzales: 0
Number of 6-year-old boys deported to totalitarian dictatorships by Reno: 1

Not until Bush became president was the media interested in discussing the shortcomings of the attorney general. Whatever flaws Alberto Gonzales has (John Ashcroft has none), we don't have to go back to the Harding administration to find a worse attorney general.

From the phony child abuse cases of the '80s to the military assault on Americans at Waco, Janet Reno presided over the most egregious attacks on Americans' basic liberties since the Salem witch trials. These outrageous deprivations of life and liberty were not the work of fanatical right-wing prosecutors, but liberals like Janet Reno.

Reno is the sort of wild-eyed zealot trampling on real civil rights that Hillary views as an ideal attorney general, unlike that brute Alberto Gonzales. At least Reno didn't fire any U.S. attorneys!

Oh wait --

Number of U.S. attorneys fired by Ashcroft: 0
Number of U.S. attorneys fired by Gonzales: 8
Number of U.S. attorneys fired by Reno: 93

Posted by: hillarys AG | August 29, 2007 6:17 PM | Report abuse

This week, congressional Democrats vowed to investigate Attorney General Alberto Gonzales' firing of himself. Gonzales has said he was not involved in the discussions about his firing and that it was "performance-based," but he couldn't recall the specifics.

Posted by: Ann C. | August 29, 2007 6:14 PM | Report abuse

We are so proud to have named so many post offices. and minimum wage has already helped over 67 people get a raise. We will get to social security, the environment, ethics, earmarks, the appropriations, the war, medicare, eduction, energy and a whole host of other things if you just vote for us ten or 20 more times. We promise. We're Libs.

roo name one substantative new law. I always love your claims with no citations and no facts. I also love fairy tales for the same reason.

Posted by: empty promises | August 29, 2007 6:13 PM | Report abuse

Loudoun Voter - You're even dumber than I thought if you think nominating Hillary Clinton is going to unify Democrats. Every poll to date shows support for her to be lukewarm, at best. Many Democrats (and genuine liberals) loathe both Clinton's, but money grubbing, two faced, utter incompetent, and ruthless Hillary Clinton most of all. A few more exposures of the sort of illegal campaign contributions she has been involved in, a few stories finally making it to the press about her anti-labor policies, her too cozy relationships with big money interests, and that lukewarm support will fade PDQ.

Posted by: MikeB | August 29, 2007 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Rep. Brian Baird's (D-Wash.) recent conversion on the Iraq war is beginning to affect more than the national dialogue. On Wednesday, liberal group MoveOn.org announced an ad campaign against the congressman in his own district. Baird recently returned from a trip to Iraq and reversed his position on a withdrawal timetable, citing military progress in the four-year-old war. MoveOn is calling the move a "flip-flop" and says it goes against the views of his constituents.\

We tolerate no thinking in the hate wing of the Libs. Stick with the program. we will win an election some day.

Posted by: see what happens when you are friends with the enemy | August 29, 2007 6:08 PM | Report abuse

Anonymous--"since we have no agenda other than winning power, we Dems promise to investigate until the next election. this should take up most of our time so don't expect any laws to be passed. We already passed minimum wage and helped out over 46 starving immigrants so as you can see our work is done. We simply have no idea what to do about the war, the environment, social security, medicare, corruption, earmarks or any other actual issue facing america."

The 110th Congress has actually already passed more substantive legislation than the 109th did.

In addition, the 110th Congress has gone through 56 filibusters (by Republicans) where the entire 109th went through 65 (by Democrats.)

And they still have half their session remaining! (We will discount a couple months next fall for campaigning.) So please stop embarrassing yourself.

Posted by: roo | August 29, 2007 6:07 PM | Report abuse

The next generation is on to you zouk. You can't pull things out that that and expect it to work anymore. "Fidel wants obama."

Who does that work on? Middle school kids can't vote yet buddy. Your tricks are outdated. We see them all now.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 6:06 PM | Report abuse

""Reno. So Close to Hell You Can See Sparks."

(Sparks, Nevada. pop. 325 people ,354 cows.)"

I like it proud. Funny too. Am I living in hell? Seems like it. Sure are a lot of cow-folk/dittoheads. Sure are alot of people living in a false reality. Willful ignorance.

This is why I came. To open eyes of the blind. and To open the ears of the deaf.

You gop'ers are slaves, you just don't realize it. Nothing upstairs. Borg. Mindless robots.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Former President Carter welcomed Democratic presidential hopeful John Edwards to Georgia on Wednesday, embracing the fellow Southerner as a kindred spirit on poverty and the environment. Carter and Edwards shared the stage at Carter's alma mater, Georgia Southwestern State University. Carter stopped short of endorsing the former senator from North Carolina but called him "a candidate whom I really admire."

and that folks - is all she wrote. you can flush the john now. fidel wants Hillary and carter likes edwards. which is worse? Osama liked Kerry you remember?

Posted by: kingofzouk | August 29, 2007 6:00 PM | Report abuse

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2005_levee_failures_in_Greater_New_Orleans

"In the 17 months following Katrina five investigations were carried out. The only Congressionally ordered study was sponsored and managed by the Army Corps of Engineers. Two major independent studies were done by the University of California at Berkeley and the Louisiana State University. Two minor studies were done by FEMA and the insurance industry. All five studies basically agree on the engineering mechanisms of failure.

The failure mechanisms engineers investigated included overtopping of levees and floodwalls by the storm surge, consequential undermining of flood wall foundations or other weakening by water of the wall foundations, and the storm surge pressures exceeding the strength of the floodwalls."

Maintenance and inspection are the responsibility of local levee boards, but the levee failures were not due to maintenance, but rather to design flaws that routine maintenance would not have detected"

"On April 5, 2006, months after independent investigators had demonstrated that levee failures were not due to natural forces beyond intended design strength, Lt. Gen. Carl Strock testified before the U. S. Senate Subcommittee on Energy and Water that, "We have now concluded we had problems with the design of the structure." He also testified that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers did not know of this mechanism of failure prior to August 29, 2005. The claim of ignorance is refuted, however, by the National Science Foundation investigators hired by the Army Corps of Engineers, who point to a 1986 study by the Corps itself that such separations were possible in the I-wall design.[11]

Nearly two months later, June 1, 2006, the USACE finally and unequivocally admitted responsibility for the events in New Orleans with the release of the completed report. The Final Draft of the IPET report states the destructive forces of Katrina were "aided by incomplete protection, lower than authorized structures, and levee sections with erodible materials."


Read between the lines dittoheads.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Have you heard about Reno's new slogan? No longer are they calling themselves the Biggest Little City on the World. In an attempt to attract more folks like rufus, they are now using

"Reno. So Close to Hell You Can See Sparks."

(Sparks, Nevada. pop. 325 people ,354 cows.)

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | August 29, 2007 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Proud - by then the Lib agenda of investigate and pontificate without any effort to legislate will be clear. they have nothing else to offer. the lesson about spending will have been digested and the Rs will be fresh for a fight. and what an easy opponent. I think rudy is an excellent choice and will lower taxes, keep us safe, and not do anything drastic on the social scene. Just my kind of guy. compare this to the given alternative : raise taxes, surrender and drastically change our society by fiat toward socialism and unethical behavior. the chinese money is already flowing. the empty promises released. the sinister attacks on anyone who dares to question the megolomania of a clinton. the hollowing out of the military.

Easy choice if you have eyes, ears and something behind them. but this obviously excludes the Libs - nothing upstairs to work with.

Posted by: kingofzouk | August 29, 2007 5:47 PM | Report abuse

Tough talk, GOP. We'll see won't we. We'll see how many americans are with you guys.

good luck. Really. I don't see it happening though. You people are hopeless. I have you all in the palm of my hands. YOu just don't realize it yet. Most americans do not like to be look at as people that are ignorant to the world. That's what MOST people see you gop'ers as. Out of touch, lost track of reality. Dittohead slaves who parrot talking points all day.

Only works with people like you. Un-informe, out of touch, fascist, racist. The future will not smile on you. Read my posts a little deeper and you will see what I am really saying. I got you people in the palm of my hands. CC knows this. That's why he's shutting down.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 5:43 PM | Report abuse

Gotta read that fine print, right GOP. Screw the little man at every chance. Make sure there is plenty of legal gargon plenty of small print. Screw the little guy.

Who is voting republcian? Are you people going for the Darth Vader vote? :)

What spineless meniacle physco is going to vote GOP. YOur party is done for a generation. Don't hate the country to much when your movement is dust. Anymore than you currently do. You cannot force conservatism on a free people. Fear will not run my generation.

OHH. ANd old man. That post about new orleans retrepution was a joke. Just trying to make a point. You people are fascsits. You people only care about yourselves. YOu people are living in a dream land. You have a year and a half. Use that time wisely.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Insurance companies typically restrict property coverage to damage caused by wind, fire and other hazards. Congress launched the National Flood Insurance Program in 1968 to help homeowners living in flood-prone areas get flood insurance to complement private policies

rufas - we all now you can't write but now it is clear you can't read either. I guess you will probably say you misread on purpose to fool us. whatever. don't even get me started on your reasoning process. You have now made Ignorant coward look like a rhodes scholar and that is a feat. Are you his shill?

Posted by: what I said cookoo | August 29, 2007 5:34 PM | Report abuse

"In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, a major storm is brewing over the denial of many homeowners' insurance claims. Battered by consumer attorneys on one side, major insurers are watching their credit ratings being downgraded because of what's likely to be the largest insured loss in U.S. history.

Adjusters are denying many homeowners' claims, saying the damage was caused by flooding, an "Act of God" that is not covered by homeowners policies. Many homeowners are outraged and several prominent lawyers are right behind the adjusters.

Dean Barras of Marrero, La., said State Farm denied coverage on much of the damage to his home, claiming that the "chimney was not built properly." In a complaint to ConsumerAffairs.com, Barras complained that much of the damage occurred during the two weeks his home was exposed to the elements, without electricity or air conditioning.

Among the damage State Farm refused to cover was: a double-pane window with water in it, warped door frames, wooden musical instruments ruined by humidity, furniture and cabinetry swollen by humidity, roof damage from wind-driven debris, a batting cage with a tree on top of it and a houseful of appliances damaged by an apparent electrical surge.

"Imagine your entire house a steam bath with blown-open doors and exposed to the elements for two weeks," Barras said. "I paid insurance premiums for 9 yrs. faithfully on this dwelling. Thanks for your ears -- I'm tired."

Dickie Scruggs
Enter Richard "Dickie" Scruggs, a Mississippi lawyer who has won billions in suits against tobacco and asbestos companies. He is suing several major insurance companies, including State Farm, Allstate and Nationwide. Scruggs said that although most of the hurricane damage was caused by "a combination of wind and storm surge," insurance adjusters are claiming that the losses are due solely to flooding, which is not covered by homeowners insurance.

Scruggs said he expects to file "tens of thousands of lawsuits" for homeowners along the Gulf Coast. Rather than a class-action suit, he said, the suits would be consolidated into "common issue" legal actions in which juries will render verdicts, and in which insurance companies could be ordered to pay the amount required under each individual policy. Scruggs is the brother-in-law of Sen. Trent Lott, R-Miss.

Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood has also sued property insurers, trying to force them to pay for more of the damage.

Louisiana Suit Blames the Levees
In Louisiana, plaintiff attorneys with the McKernan Law Firm have filed suit on behalf of homeowners in the Greater New Orleans area claiming that the high water in Orleans and Jefferson Parishes was caused by a man-made neglect of levees protecting the area and wind damage rather than rising water caused by natural elements, normally exempted under the "Act of God" clause.

The lawyers argued that it was breeches in the levees, not a storm surge, that caused most of the damage in the New Orleans area. Water did not come over the levee but flooded the areas in question only after the breeches occurred, their lawsuits will argue.

Insurers Respond
The insurance industry is adamant that the losses are caused by flooding, which is not covered by the typical homeowner casualty policy.

"The flood loss exclusion in homeowner policies is clearly worded, has existed for decades and has withstood previous legal and political challenges," said Ernie Csiszar, president and CEO of the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America. "We're outraged by this attempt to retroactively rewrite policies so that every risk will be covered, regardless of the cost to millions of American consumers."

Flood losses have been covered separately by the National Flood Insurance Program since 1968, Csiszar said. Many lenders require home buyers in risky areas to purchase this federally guaranteed protection in order to qualify for mortgages. However, it is not mandatory for all homeowners.

Csiszar said private insurers have historically excluded flood damage from most standard homeowner's policies because of the potential for catastrophic, widespread, and repeated losses.

Insurers Downgraded
Standard & Poor's has placed major U.S. insurers including State Farm, Allstate, Allmerica and United Fire Group on its CreditWatch list because of their "exposure to the catastrophic and unparalleled losses stemming from Hurricane Katrina."

International companies placed on the list are: Ace Group, Lloyd's, Oil Casualty, Montpelier Re, PXRE and Swiss Re.

Fitch Ratings also put five North American insurers on its Rating Watch Negative list. The affected companies include: The Allstate Corporation, Horace Mann Educators Corp., Montpelier Re Holdings Ltd., PXRE Group Ltd., and State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co.

Fitch said it believes that Hurricane Katrina will represent the largest insured loss in U.S. history, surpassing the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attack and Hurricane Andrew in 1992."


Shall I continue or do you get the idea?

Posted by: rufus1133 | August 29, 2007 5:33 PM | Report abuse

proud: "koz - I've been hearing the leftwingnut pundits glibly chortling about Rs being in disarray. I can hardly wait till the spectre of Clinton II rallies the base. Then we'll see who's laughing."

Hey proud, go ahead and nominate Rudy or Mitty. Then we'll really see how the presence of another Clinton on the Dem ticket will rally your base.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | August 29, 2007 5:33 PM | Report abuse

koz - I've been hearing the leftwingnut pundits glibly chortling about Rs being in disarray. I can hardly wait till the spectre of Clinton II rallies the base. Then we'll see who's laughing.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | August 29, 2007 5:31 PM | Report abuse

"Again. the city stood for hundreds of years without this happening. All of a sudden bush comes in, needs a distracton from iraq and this happened"


rufas has clearly gone over the edge. now Bush is creating hurricanes to distract the press. We facesits sure are smart. You might as well give up Libs. we can even win elections with only two voters - proud and zouk. we are amazing.

Posted by: cookoo | August 29, 2007 5:30 PM | Report abuse

More repub lies. It's ok. That's why I'm here.

"Court rules against homeowners in Katrina case
Insurance policies did not cover flood damage, federal appeals court says

NEW ORLEANS - Hurricane Katrina victims whose homes and businesses were destroyed when floodwaters breached levees in the 2005 storm cannot recover money from their insurance companies for the damages, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday.

The case could affect tens of thousands of rebuilding residents and business owners in Louisiana, Daniel E. Becnel, who represented 21 plaintiffs in the case, said. Insurers could have taken a "multibillion dollar hit" if the ruling had gone against the industry, said David Rossmiller, an insurance attorney and analyst.

"This event was excluded from coverage under the plaintiffs' insurance policies, and under Louisiana law, we are bound to enforce the unambiguous terms of their insurance contracts as written," Judge Carolyn King wrote for a three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

As a result, the panel found those who filed the suit "are not entitled to recover under their policies," she said.

More than a dozen insurance companies, including Allstate and Travelers, were defendants. Becnel said he planned to appeal. Xavier University said it would seek a rehearing, insisting the matter is ultimately one that should be decided by Louisiana courts.

John Houghtaling, an attorney representing 400 property and business owners in claims against insurers, agreed. He's not involved in this case but is set to argue one with similar issues before a state appeals court next month. He ultimately expects the Louisiana Supreme Court to weigh in on the exclusion issue.

"People from New Orleans need to realize this is not final," he said. "This is halftime."

King said the federal appeals judges used their "best judgment" in trying to determine how the state's high court would settle the issue if it had the case the panel decided Thursday.

The decision overturns a ruling by U.S. District Judge Stanwood Duval Jr., who in November sided with policyholders arguing that language excluding water damage from some of their insurance policies was ambiguous.

Duval said the policies did not distinguish between floods caused by an act of God -- such as excessive rainfall -- and floods caused by an act of man, which would include the levee breaches following Katrina's landfall.

But the appeals panel concluded that "even if the plaintiffs can prove that the levees were negligently designed, constructed, or maintained and that the breaches were due to this negligence, the flood exclusions in the plaintiffs' policies unambiguously preclude their recovery."

"Regardless of what caused the failure of the flood-control structures that were put in place to prevent such a catastrophe, their failure resulted in a widespread flood that damaged the plaintiffs' property," and policies clearly excluded water damage caused by floods, King wrote.


Click for related content
Report: Little progress in Katrina contracts


This was a consolidated case, including about 40 named plaintiffs, including Xavier University, and more than a dozen insurance companies. It is just one of the cases pending in federal court over Katrina damage. The Army Corps of Engineers faces thousands of claims for damage resulting after the levees breached; King noted in her opinion that dozens more cases, some consolidated and involving property owners suing insurers, are pending in federal court in New Orleans.

Rossmiller, who is not involved in Katrina-related litigation, said the appeals panel's ruling wasn't surprising.

"The 5th Circuit got it right," he said. "This was an easy one."

Representatives of Illinois-based Allstate and Minnesota-based Travelers said their companies were pleased with the court's findings.

Insurance companies typically restrict property coverage to damage caused by wind, fire and other hazards. Congress launched the National Flood Insurance Program in 1968 to help homeowners living in flood-prone areas get flood insurance to complement private policies. Private agents sell the federal policies, which are often subsidized by taxpayers because premiums don't factor in the real risks of damage."


http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20093139/

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Proud, these are people who are going to vote for clinton again. enough said.

Posted by: kingofzouk | August 29, 2007 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Rufas - you got your facts turned completely upside down again as usual.

Regular homeowners insurance does not cover flooding. you must purchase flood insurance which is extra. Most lenders who are holding paper on a home in a flood plain require it. I am not sure why any resident of NO wouldn't have the sense to keep flood insurance, unless they are like you. wind damage is covered by normal insurance. the residents who had no flood insurance claimed the damage was from the wind. really? I can only guess you want the nice big nanny government to cover all the people who were too stupid to get flood insurance for a home below sea level. can anyone make a mistake in Rufas' world and not pay the price?

but then mortgages are only made out of paper right?

Posted by: you mean it might flood below sea level? | August 29, 2007 5:23 PM | Report abuse

"How many have actually been to n.o.?"

Rufus - I've been to the Gulf Coast and New Orleans, and I've been to Reno, too, and one thing is for sure. Any natural disaster befalling these communities has not been and will not be because of you, or to pay them back for your disgruntlement. Your grandiosity is almost as appallingly bad as your egocentrism.

Nobody is bad-mouthing New Orleans here. We're just re-stating the obvious - it is a huge waste of money and lives to continue rebuilding that city the same way over and over again. It is the definition of insanity.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | August 29, 2007 5:22 PM | Report abuse

I love the fact that everybody calls him "turdblossom". Hilarious.

"Karl Rove, your car is ready.

White House pranksters wrapped Rove's Jaguar in plastic wrap on the private driveway next to the West Wing. Rove's car is easily recognizable because of its "I love Barack Obama" bumper sticker and the twin stuffed-animal eagles on the trunk. Oh, and there's a stuffed-animal elephant on the hood.

Rove, the top White House political strategist who recently announced his resignation, left his car on the driveway while visiting Texas and traveling with President Bush. He was due back in Washington Wednesday evening."

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 5:16 PM | Report abuse

"AM I my brother's/sister's keeper?"

Yes I am. If notI wouldn't waste my time here everyday. Why are you here? Whoever that "you" may be.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 5:14 PM | Report abuse

"Dear Rufus (name changed to protect the innocent),

Watch a special video about
New Orleans and Barack's plan
to rebuild the Gulf Coast:

http://my.barackobama.com/gulfcoast
A house built on a strong foundation should withstand floods and high winds.

A government built on a strong foundation of solidarity and common purpose should aid its citizens when their houses are not strong enough.

Two years ago, Hurricane Katrina revealed that our federal emergency response system and the leadership responsible for it lacked a strong foundation.

As thousands drowned and lost their homes, President Bush and FEMA responded incompetently to this tragedy.

Over the weeks and months that followed, things at FEMA didn't get much better. There's been a lot of squabbling, but no one has stepped up to take responsibility.

Nonetheless, New Orleans and other communities on the Gulf Coast are making a recovery -- small businesses, neighborhoods, and churches are coming back to life thanks to individuals and organizations taking matters into their own hands. In the absence of proper support from the federal government, Americans have reached out to one another and begun the work that the Bush administration has neglected.

Those working on the recovery have honored a principle our government has largely forgotten under President Bush: I am my brother's keeper, I am my sister's keeper.

Yet even for patient and generous people, the burdens continue to be overwhelming.

There are countless problems remaining to be solved: shuttered schools and hospitals, abandoned houses, faulty levees, and more empty promises from Washington.

New Orleans and the whole Gulf Coast face huge challenges ahead. But rebuilding is also an opportunity.

In rebuilding, we've got a chance to create something stronger -- a foundation that can serve as the rock on which dreams are founded.

Our focus should be on strengthening the fundamental elements any community needs to thrive: maintaining local law and order, bringing doctors and nurses back to provide reliable healthcare, and attracting top teachers to restore schools that will give our children the chance to succeed.

But to do this we must change our leadership.

These failures expose an arrogance in our current leaders -- a detachment from the lives of real people and an indifference to the consequences for the least fortunate -- that cannot continue.

And make no mistake, the failures of the Bush administration were not just failures of response. They were the end result of policies that have eroded our country's foundation and weakened our commitment to one another.

To rebuild in the wake of Katrina and get our country back on course, we need to renew our commitment to one another. We need to return to this core principle of our great nation by honoring our responsibility to our fellow citizens.

I am my brother's keeper. I am my sister's keeper. And that foundation is what makes all of us stronger.

Thank you.


Barack Obama"

Posted by: RUFUS (Mr. Obama) | August 29, 2007 5:11 PM | Report abuse

""Ther eis a famous saying." It costs less to do it right than it does to re-do it." It's in prevention."

Like not building a major city below sea level in the first place?"

Again. the city stood for hundreds of years without this happening. All of a sudden bush comes in, needs a distracton from iraq and this happened. Not likely. Hundreds of years that city stood.

Don't hate and bad talk NO. Don't they have enough problems without you greeedy fascsits piling on? Saying it's there fault for living there.

Or all you people bad mouthing. How many have actually been to n.o.? How many of you actually know what in the world you are talking about before you ramble the next lie and half truth.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 4:48 PM | Report abuse

and how many us attorneys did President Clinton dismiss during his term ???? come on you'll have to do better than that.

Posted by: common sense | August 28, 2007 11:33 PM

Funny you should ask that "common sense." The answer is: he dismissed the same number that Ronald Reagan did when he took office and precisely one less than George W Bush did when he took office.

The only difference is, Mr. Bush decided his picks weren't partisan enough so he fired some of his own appointees mid-term, something that has only been done 3 other times since 1980. Thanks for playing.

23 Mar 2007 // WASHINGTON -- "Three weeks ago, Justice Department officials settled on a "talking point" to rebut the chorus of Democratic accusations that the Bush administration had wrongly injected politics into law enforcement when it dismissed eight U.S. attorneys.

Why not focus on the Clinton administration's having "fired all 93 U.S. attorneys" when Janet Reno became attorney general in March 1993? The idea was introduced in a memo from a Justice Department spokeswoman.

The message has been effective. What's followed has been a surge of complaints on blogs and talk radio that it was the Clinton administration that first politicized the Justice Department.

The facts, it turns out, are more complicated.

In a March 4 memo titled "Draft Talking Points," Justice Department spokeswoman Tasia Scolinos asked, "The [White House] is under the impression that we did not remove all the Clinton [U.S. attorneys] in 2001 like he did when he took office. Is that true?"

That is mostly true, replied D. Kyle Sampson, then chief of staff to Atty. Gen. Alberto R. Gonzales. "Clinton fired all Bush [U.S. attorneys] in one fell swoop. We fired all Clinton [U.S. attorneys] but staggered it out more and permitted some to stay on a few months," he said.

A few minutes later, Deputy Atty. Gen. Paul J. McNulty replied to the same memo.

"On the issue of Clinton [U.S. attorneys], we called each one and had them give us a timeframe. Most were gone by late April. In contrast, Clinton [Justice Department] told all but a dozen in early March to be gone immediately," McNulty said.

The difference appears minor. Both McNulty and Sampson acknowledged that the Bush administration, like the Clinton administration, brought in a new slate of U.S. attorneys within a few months of taking office.

But historical data compiled by the Senate show the pattern going back to President Reagan.

Reagan replaced 89 of the 93 U.S. attorneys in his first two years in office. President Clinton had 89 new U.S. attorneys in his first two years, and President Bush had 88 new U.S. attorneys in his first two years."

Posted by: Bryan | August 29, 2007 4:45 PM | Report abuse

What is my real opinion of what happened in NO? You really want to know.

When I was out there I was played with and treated poorly. God punished NO for their insolence. The will of GOd has spoken.

Hopefully the same happens to Reno when I leave, because of their harse treatment of me. But instead no flood something else. MAybe a mexican revolution destroys it.

Is that better Proudgop. Does me saying that make you feel better about yourself. As I am some anonymous crazy person that doesn't know what he's talking about?

When I misspell words on purpose, does it make you feel smarter?

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 4:45 PM | Report abuse

"Ther eis a famous saying." It costs less to do it right than it does to re-do it." It's in prevention."

Like not building a major city below sea level in the first place?

Posted by: bsimon | August 29, 2007 4:43 PM | Report abuse

"I realize you were refering to rebuilding New Orleans, but can we apply that to the ultimate boondoggle we chose to fight in Iraq?"

I chose my words deliberately, clever boy.

Posted by: bsimon | August 29, 2007 4:41 PM | Report abuse

"1. Their insurance over there was revolted."

revolked. Excuse me

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 4:41 PM | Report abuse

"How much money should the fed gov't spend to protect a city built in such an abysmally stupid place? The people who lost homes are receiving checks & compensation, slowly - no doubt - but, how much should the rest of us pay the next time the city gets hit? If another Katrina comes in this year, or next, or in 10 years, should we respend all that money again? Just rebuild a city built below sea level in hurricane country? "


1. Their insurance over there was revolted. The people of NO may get gov. money, but they are not getting their insurance money for their homes. Why? State farm and others are trying to say katrina damage was due to wind damage not flood. WOW.

2. Something you gop morons will never understand. Ther eis a famous saying." It costs less to do it right than it does to re-do it." It's in prevention. We could have stopped catrina before it happened. That city has been there for hundreds of years. You mean to say they never had floods? How did they handle it in th epast. The levee's were neglected. This may be paranoia, but I beleive this was a planed attack against our country like 9/11. Read up. Do some research for pete's sake.

Instead of sh*oting the messenger

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 4:39 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I get it. Homoseual prostitution is not okay for Republican's but is okay for Democrats. That is the essential difference and that is the sum total of the meaning of your comments....numbnuts.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Some anonymous polesmoker bleated "The ever changing positions of posters like Loudoun voter is simple amazing. He/she/it blathers "Funny how the...GOP has not done anything about the serial prostitute patronizer David Vitter.""

Hey numbnuts, my post was pointing out the difference between the GOP reaction to Vitter and to Craig. Eat dung.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | August 29, 2007 4:25 PM | Report abuse

So, again, WHY SPEND FEDERAL TAX DOLLARS FIGHTING A LOSING BATTLE??

Posted by: | August 29, 2007 02:32 PM

I realize you were refering to rebuilding New Orleans, but can we apply that to the ultimate boondoggle we chose to fight in Iraq?

As this is a Giuliani thread, I think its pertinent to mention that 1) Giuliani has no legitimate (read: verfiable or objective) basis to claim he is a "terr'rism fighter," 2) he has already lost a heads up contest to Hillary Clinton for the Senate, 3) his approval before 9/11 was under 50%, 4) he left NYC with a bigger budget deficit than he inherited, and 5) New Yorkers considered him "not likable" by a ratio of nearly 4:1 in a 2001 poll.

With his crony-capitalist, us-vs-them,my-way-or-the-highway, end-justify-the-means, party-over-country managing style, coupled with a deafness to legitimate criticism and a preference for doing things the ugly way rather than the right way, Rudolph William Louis Giuliani is first and foremost, the true natural heir to Bush/Rovism (and nearly 80% of the country agrees that is NOT a good thing) and the only presidential candidate who, if elected, would likely be actually WORSE THAN BUSH.

Posted by: Worse than Bush (if that's possible) | August 29, 2007 4:17 PM | Report abuse

The ever changing positions of posters like Loudoun voter is simple amazing. He/she/it blathers "Funny how the...GOP has not done anything about the serial prostitute patronizer David Vitter." We always thought leftwing Clinton trash liked perverted sex?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 4:16 PM | Report abuse

The ever changing positions of posters like Loudoun voter is simple amazing. He/she/it blathers "Funny how the...GOP has not done anything about the serial prostitute patronizer David Vitter." We always thought leftwing Clinton task liked perverted sex?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 4:16 PM | Report abuse

rufus- It's entirely different to insist on learning from past mistakes than it is to say the citizens of NO deserved the tragedy of Katrina. Nobody is suggesting that they deserved it. What I am saying is, look...there are parts of the city that should not be rebuilt becuase they are more than 8 feet below sea level and it's a complete waste of money, and it puts people at high risk of losing their lives again. Kind of like throwing good money after bad.

If it keeps on rainin', levee's goin' to break, If it keeps on rainin', levee's goin' to break

When the levee breaks I'll have no place to stay.

Mean old levee taught me to weep and moan,
Mean old levee taught me to weep and moan
Got what it takes to make a mountain man leave his home,
Oh, well, oh, well, oh, well....

Cryin' won't help you, prayin' won't do you no good,
Now, cryin' won't help you, prayin' won't do you no good,
When the levee breaks, mama, you got to move.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | August 29, 2007 3:49 PM | Report abuse

"So no had it coming and they deserved it then."

What a pinhead.

How much money should the fed gov't spend to protect a city built in such an abysmally stupid place? The people who lost homes are receiving checks & compensation, slowly - no doubt - but, how much should the rest of us pay the next time the city gets hit? If another Katrina comes in this year, or next, or in 10 years, should we respend all that money again? Just rebuild a city built below sea level in hurricane country?

How many times?

If you're upset about wasting money fighting an unwinnable war in Iraq, how on earth can you possibly be in favor of rebuilding New Orleans just for it to sit at risk of flooding again?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Ok proud. So no had it coming and they deserved it then. Is that it. Screw them. They get what they deserve. It's their fault for living there? I thought you gop'ers said the government's ONLY job is to keep us safe. So in the no case this is not true?

I guess your fake gop rules only apply to who you say when you say it. Hypocricy is so ingrained into your mental it effects all your thoughts. That is double think, no?

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 3:21 PM | Report abuse

"New Orleans, almost all of it, is built below sea level."

This must be whart rufus was talking about earlier when he wrote:

"It is moot. YOu are wasting you time. Please go elsewhere.YOu have no chance here. I would think that would be clear by now."

Your'e right rufus. It is, indeed, a waste of time to try to prop up and rebuild a city that the ocean is quickly reclaiming.

From an eerily prophetic December 2000 article...

" New Orleans sits on a bed of silt, sand and clay, which historically has been rebuilt with each flooding; new silt and sand are deposited when the river floods. But the levees that protect the city from flooding also prevent the rebuilding of the silt. As a result, New Orleans is sinking at a rate of one-third of an inch per year, which is not good for a city that is already eight feet below sea level. To make matters worse, global warming is causing the sea level to rise."

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | August 29, 2007 3:04 PM | Report abuse

WASHINGTON- Democratic fund-raiser Norman Hsu pleaded no contest in a court case in California in the early 1990s, according to his lawyer and media reports.The Los Angeles Times reported in today's editions that Mr. Hsu agreed in 1991 to accept three years in prison for allegedly swindling $1 million out of investors who had backed his plan to resell latex gloves.

Norman Hsu is one of the leading political fund-raisers in the country this year. In fact, many fund-raisers say he is one of a small handful of people capable of raising more than $1 million -- a major feat considering the maximum donation allowed by an individual for 2008 races is $4,600 per candidate. But longtime political donors are curious: "Who is Norman Hsu?" asks Robin Chandler Duke,

Posted by: same old clinton | August 29, 2007 2:52 PM | Report abuse

(Breaking News from the International Association of Fire Fighters)

Senator ... Soldier ... Patriot ...
Experience and Leadership Our Country Needs

A Message from the General President

We have a core political philosophy on which all of our political work hinges. We will support those who support us.

In the 2008 Presidential election, there are a number of candidates with solid records on fire fighter and working family issues. The proven, demonstrated ability to lead on those issues are what we weigh the most when deciding who will receive the considerable support and endorsement of our great union. These successes tell us what kind of leadership each candidate will offer as our President.

So we did the background work and looked at the candidates' records on fire fighter and working family issues. We saw which issues they have a history not just of supporting, but where they led the fight to change things for the better, and where they would in the future. And we examined the strengths each candidate would bring in a general election.

We listened to the candidates' words, hosted forums and printed them in our magazine.

We talked with our leaders and members across the country... and after all of that work, your IAFF Executive Board took that information, got together and found that one candidate out of all those running in both parties really stood head and shoulders above the rest when it came to support for fire fighters, for protecting our country and on issues that are important to our economy, our families and their quality of life.

That candidate is U.S. Senator Chris Dodd, and that's why your IAFF Executive Board voted unanimously today to endorse Senator Dodd for President of the United States.

His full record is laid out on our web site, at www.firefightersfordodd.com

Chris understands service, duty and leadership. He's spent his entire adult life serving our country and its citizens.

As a young man, he joined the Peace Corps and as he worked in rural communities in the Dominican Republic he learned the value of the United States leading the way for others.

After fulfilling that commitment, Chris enlisted in the Army National Guard and later served in the U.S. Army Reserves.

And after earning a law degree, he ran for and was elected to Congress in 1974, where he served three terms in the House of Representatives on behalf of Connecticut, then was elected to represent his state in the U.S. Senate in 1980.

His record of leadership on issues that have helped American workers not just keep their heads above water, but to get ahead, is long and distinguished. It tells us a lot about the kind of President he will make and why we believe he can win.

Just as important, Chris Dodd's record is probably the best in the history of the U.S. Congress in leading the fight to ensure that the funding, resources and staffing fire fighters need to do their jobs safely and effectively is there.

He wasn't just a co-sponsor of the FIRE Act, he wrote it.

He wasn't just a co-sponsor of the SAFER Act, he wrote it.

Chris has co-sponsored our collective bargaining legislation.

He helped lead the fight to implement all of the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Report.

Dodd supports increased funding for Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) grants, the Urban Search And Rescue (USAR) program and other block grants to assist first responders.

In fact, one of his first votes as a young congressman was to authorize the original PSOB program in September 1976.

Click Here for Dodd's Record on Fire/Working Family Issues

With the boldest plans to make health insurance, college tuition and energy more affordable, we know that Chris Dodd will continue to fight for the middle class as President.

Chris Dodd has a wealth of experience and record of leadership on national and homeland security matters. His experienced diplomacy is going to be critical in protecting our nation and leading back to the forefront in the world again ...

Chris has served the citizens of this country with distinction his entire career, he is a candidate with experience, a proven track record and a real vision for the future.

He is known as an effective lawmaker and a skillful negotiator who is respected on both sides of the political aisle - who can bring people together to tackle big challenges.

Such qualities have served Chris well as he has been part of every major domestic and foreign policy debate over the last quarter century.

Our great country has been without sound presidential leadership for too long to keep us safe and secure. This time around - experience matters. No candidate has more experience, and no candidate offers leadership on issues important to fire fighters and the quality of life for their families than Chris Dodd.

Posted by: nddaveman | August 29, 2007 2:51 PM | Report abuse

The Federal Election Commission has fined one of the biggest liberal political action committees $775,000 for using unregulated cash to boost Democratic candidates during the 2004 elections. America Coming Together (ACT) raised $137 million for its get-out-the-vote effort in 17 states in the 2004 elections, but the FEC found most of that cash came through contributions that violated federal limits or were otherwise barred by campaign rules.

Posted by: We're Dems, we cheat | August 29, 2007 2:50 PM | Report abuse

"Published on Tuesday, February 4, 2003 by the Prince George's Journal (Maryland)
Bush-Linked Company Handled Security for the WTC, Dulles and United
by Margie Burns

George W. Bush's brother was on the board of directors of a company providing electronic security for the World Trade Center, Dulles International Airport and United Airlines, according to public records. The company was backed by an investment firm, the Kuwait-American Corp., also linked for years to the Bush family.

The security company, formerly named Securacom and now named Stratesec, is in Sterling, Va.. Its CEO, Barry McDaniel, said the company had a ``completion contract" to handle some of the security at the World Trade Center ``up to the day the buildings fell down."


http://www.commondreams.org/views03/0204-06.htm


See anything I don't? See a pattern?

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 2:39 PM | Report abuse

You be the judge

http://www.factcheck.org/article344.html


"Is Bush to Blame for New Orleans Flooding?
September 2, 2005
He did slash funding for levee projects. But the Army Corps of Engineers says Katrina was just too strong.

Summary
Some critics are suggesting President Bush was as least partly responsible for the flooding in New Orleans. In a widely quoted opinion piece, former Clinton aide Sidney Blumenthal says that "the damage wrought by the hurricane may not entirely be the result of an act of nature," and cites years of reduced funding for federal flood-control projects around New Orleans.
Our fact-checking confirms that Bush indeed cut funding for projects specifically designed to strengthen levees. Indeed, local officials had been complaining about that for years.

It is not so clear whether the money Bush cut from levee projects would have made any difference, however, and we're not in a position to judge that. The Army Corps of Engineers - which is under the President's command and has its own reputation to defend - insists that Katrina was just too strong, and that even if the levee project had been completed it was only designed to withstand a category 3 hurricane.

Analysis
We suspect this subject will get much more attention in Congress and elsewhere in the coming months. Without blaming or absolving Bush, here are the key facts we've been able to establish so far:
Bush Cut Funding

Blumenthal's much-quoted article in salon.com carried the headline: "No one can say they didn't see it coming." And it said the Bush administration cut flood-control funding "to pay for the Iraq war."

He continues:

Blumenthal: With its main levee broken, the evacuated city of New Orleans has become part of the Gulf of Mexico . But the damage wrought by the hurricane may not entirely be the result of an act of nature.

...By 2003 the federal funding for the flood control project essentially dried up as it was drained into the Iraq war. In 2004, the Bush administration cut funding requested by the New Orleans district of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for holding back the waters of Lake Pontchartrain by more than 80 percent. Additional cuts at the beginning of this year...forced the New Orleans district of the Corps to impose a hiring freeze.

We can confirm that funding was cut. The project most closely associated with preventing flooding in New Orleans was the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Hurricane Protection Project, which was "designed to protect residents between Lake Pontchartrain and the Missisippi River levee from surges in Lake Pontchartrain," according to a fact sheet from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. (The fact sheet is dated May 23, long before Katrina). The multi-decade project involved building new levees, enlarging existing levees, and updating other protections like floodwalls. It was scheduled to be completed in 2015.

Over at least the past several budget cycles, the Corps has received substantially less money than it requested for the Lake Pontchartrain project, even though Congress restored much of the money the President cut from the amount the Corps requested.

In fiscal year 2004, the Corps requested $11 million for the project. The President's budget allocated $3 million, and Congress furnished $5.5 million. Similarly, in fiscal 2005 the Corps requested $22.5 million, which the President cut to $3.9 million in his budget. Congress increased that to $5.5 million. "This was insufficient to fund new construction contracts," according to a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' project fact sheet. The Corps reported that "seven new contracts are being delayed due to lack funds" [sic].

The President proposed $3 million for the project in the budget for fiscal 2006, which begins Oct. 1. "This will be insufficient to fund new construction projects," the fact sheet stated. It says the Corps "could spend $20 million if funds were provided." The Corps of Engineers goes on to say:

Army Corps of Engineers, May 23: In Orleans Parish, two major pump stations are threatened by hurricane storm surges. Major contracts need to be awarded to provide fronting protection for them. Also, several levees have settled and need to be raised to provide the design protection. The current funding shortfalls in fiscal year 2005 and fiscal year 2006 will prevent the Corps from addressing these pressing needs.

The Corps has seen cutbacks beyond those affecting just the Lake Pontchartrain project. The Corps oversees SELA, or the Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Control project, which Congress authorized after six people died from flooding in May 1995. The Times-Picayune newspaper of New Orleans reported that, overall, the Corps had spent $430 million on flood control and hurricane prevention, with local governments offering more than $50 million toward the project. Nonetheless, "at least $250 million in crucial projects remained," the newspaper said.

In the past five years, the amount of money spent on all Corps construction projects in the New Orleans district has declined by 44 percent, according to the New Orleans CityBusiness newspaper, from $147 million in 2001 to $82 million in the current fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30.

A Long History of Complaints"

Shall I continue or do you want to read it yourselves?


Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 2:37 PM | Report abuse

"The levees were neglicted. They used cheap materials. Research the levee's and you will find the truth."

So far (Happy 2nd Anniv, Kat), our Fed gov't has spent $114 Billion on repair & compensation. The levees *still* aren't up to the level of repair they were pre-Kat. Why the pheck are we spending billions of dollars to REbuild a city below sea level. And that city will KEEP SINKING. Plus, if you believe the global warming people, the sea level is GOING UP. The weather gods say that hurricans will be STRONGER and MORE FREQUENT as the atmosphere warms up. So, again, WHY SPEND FEDERAL TAX DOLLARS FIGHTING A LOSING BATTLE??

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 2:32 PM | Report abuse

rufus is giving zouk and his sock puppets a classic beatdown today.

Posted by: Spectator2 | August 29, 2007 2:25 PM | Report abuse

mONEY MONEY MONEY. I used to live in NO. I find it insulting for you gop'ers to continuously blame the people, like always, for this issue. It was preventable. I lived there, remember. Did you.

The levees were neglicted. They used cheap materials. Research the levee's and you will find the truth. OR don't. Keep repeating republican propoganda. It's all you gop'ers are good for. Parrots.

Posted by: RUFUS | August 29, 2007 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Funny how the "accountability-demanding" GOP has not done anything about the serial prostitute patronizer David Vitter.

Gee, wonder if that's because he's not up for reelection, like Craig is.

Posted by: Spectator2 | August 29, 2007 2:23 PM | Report abuse

numbskull - "...After failing on katrina...". You leftist whack jobs are the ones that attack government bailouts of wealthy home owners who build houses on river banks and the ocean and cry crocodile tears when the inevitable flood happens, their fancy home gets destroyed or damaged. (And, I happen to agree with this view.) Well, news note, Now Orleans, almost all of it, is built below sea level. Over the years it has been there, it has merely sunk even lower. It is an invitation to disaster for even mini-Katrina's! Leave it to rot in peace! Or, if some people feel so attached to it, let THEM pay to fix it up, preparatory to its being offered as another sacrifice to the gods of weather and natural disaster. Just don't stick the tax payers with the lunacy of fixing up this boondoggle.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 2:10 PM | Report abuse

cheroff. After failing on katrina. He is being held accountable by keeping his job. His name is being thrown around( by gop'ers) to replace gonzales as the ag. Accountability?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 1:48 PM | Report abuse

What have I told you gop'ers. John Wayne is dead. Welcome to reality. John wayne is dead, he's not walking through that door.

"Commentary: Bush needs to pull a John Wayne on Katrina recovery "

cnn.com

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Condi Rice's accountability moment:

After missing the warning signs of an impending terrorist attack on US soil, she was promoted from National Security Advisor to the cabinet post Secretary of State.

Nice job Condi!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 1:38 PM | Report abuse

"NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- Hike up those pants. Droopy drawers that bare skin or underwear might soon be forbidden fashion on the streets of Alexandria and Shreveport, and violators could be forced to part with some cash.

"I'm tired (of) looking at behinds," Shreveport Councilwoman Joyce Bowman said after Tuesday's 4-3 vote to ban fanny-flaunting trousers.

Nobody can be arrested just for violating the ordinance, but they could be fined or required to perform community service. The maximum fine for a first offense is $100.

Alexandria's City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to ban the baring. Its ordinance allows some sag, but 3 inches or more can bring a fine of $25 to $200 and a requirement for community service.

If the mayors of Shreveport and Alexandria sign the ordinances, they will bring Louisiana's total to at least six, with at least two more cities considering bans.

Elsewhere, Atlanta's City Council has held a hearing on a measure to outlaw saggy pants that reveal shorts or thongs.

A similar proposal in Stratford, Conn., was soundly rejected this week after critics argued it would be unconstitutional and unfairly target minorities.

Some opponents cite other objections.

"Are you going to have a 'sagging' court?" Michael Williams asked Shreveport's council. "The police have more important things to do than chase young boys and girls and say 'pull your pants up.'"

"

Posted by: big brother is watching you | August 29, 2007 1:35 PM | Report abuse

George Tenet's accountability moment:

Despite running an utterly incapable CIA that not only didn't stop the Sept 11 attacks from happening, but couldn't get the intelligence right on Iraq, resulting in what is arguably the United States' worst foreign policy debacle in 230 years, George Tenet was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Great job George!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 1:35 PM | Report abuse

I love it zouk. Keep it up. I like to show independant thinkers how dylusional and out of touch you gop'ers really are. People are on here talking about reality, people are talking about today and yesterday, your talking about the 90's. I love it. You got nothin. Nothin'

Your party's got nothin and is about to be eliminated from the square. HAHAHAHA. No wonder your so mad. You had your time. You people had 15 years non-stop. Time to give up the power. You people had your time. You used it poorly. Now stand down and let REAL americans fix the damage you people have caused.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Why aren't you fighting agaisnt the real enemy, the people you hate. Oh wait. You are (in your twsited gop mind america is the enemy you gop'er hate and have been fighting. You people hate americans freedom.) Why don't YOu and the rest of the gop leave if you hate our freedom so much?

Traitor

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 1:02 PM | Report abuse

for sale: Pardons, cheap. contact hillary for President. Lincoln bedroom stays also available at a slightly higher price. donations laundered free.

Posted by: ebay of politics | August 29, 2007 1:00 PM | Report abuse

That's what I thoguht zouk. You can't win can you. I know, I know. It's so hard. You have it so rough. YOu have to listen to people that have differant opinions than you, poor baby.

You cannot win combating truth's with lies and propoganda. It is moot. YOu are wasting you time. Please go elsewhere.YOu have no chance here. I would think that would be clear by now.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

bill and hillary's accountability moment: zero days in federal prison for perjury and lying to federal investigators.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Dear voters,

since we have no agenda other than winning power, we Dems promise to investigate until the next election. this should take up most of our time so don't expect any laws to be passed. We already passed minimum wage and helped out over 46 starving immigrants so as you can see our work is done. We simply have no idea what to do about the war, the environment, social security, medicare, corruption, earmarks or any other actual issue facing america.

We promise to promise to look into this after the next election, or more likely, we will investigate some more and blame George Busah for everything that's wrong in the world - even if we really caused it ourselves.

Love Dirty Harry and San Fran Nan

Posted by: the Dems | August 29, 2007 12:58 PM | Report abuse

scooter libby's accountability moment: zero days in federal prison for perjury and lying to federal investigators.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 12:49 PM | Report abuse

And now back to the all ignorant coward all the time blog hour, sponsoed by Kos and the braindead bloggers united.

6 in a row and growing. can someone please humor him and respond? He is so lonely over there talking to himself all day and night. Pretend he makes sense if you have to. Otherwise the flaming rants will continue the rest of the day and long into the night.

Meanwhile the blog sinks into Liberal quagmire

Hey coward......yes coward.....isn't bush stupid?.......why yes he is, how smart of you to notice....Oh you're smart too, how do come up with all those zingers?....... I cut them from Kos, our mothership....I sure hope hillary can beat bush next year......yeah, then we can lose this war quickly...and stick it to those rich guys too....and so on.

And now an editorial by that pulitzer winning rufas. but first this commercial break from the Nation.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 12:48 PM | Report abuse

"right. like when they plead guilty to a crime, then hold a press conference announcing their innocence. conservative accountability in action."

:)

Right. I was guilty. But now that I have a lawyer I'm pleading innocence. :) Standards? accountable? If that's your form of accountability I'm not sure what planet you are living on.

Since you want to lie, zouk, maybe you can enlighten us. How has bush been held accountable for anythig the last 7 years, by r's. The d's are trying but how have the r's held you people accountable the last 15 years.

You held Clinton responsilbe for his BJ nicely. Shut down the government, you can do that agaisnt a d for a BJ. But how have you held bush accountable in 7 years. I expect crickets.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 12:45 PM | Report abuse

stop, zouk, you're kill us... you are so painfully blind and naive. there is no blindness like the willfull blindness of fascists.

reminds me of a movie i saw last week, where a nazi general is bemoaning how badly the war is going for germany, and he sighs, 'Sometimes you start to wonder whose side God is really on.'

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 12:44 PM | Report abuse

I be honest with you wack nut jobs the more you slander the more I am going to vote against you. Right now the only thing Hillary got wrong is she stated that 500,000 woman die from cervical cancer each year in the world when in fact that is how many are digonsed. Mitt is the biggest lier. Also most of America misses Bill Clinto and you remember him one of the most popular Presidents in American history. You turned him into the underdog and we love to see the underdog win and guess what he did.

Now take it one step further Bush 41 in front Bush 43 in back my God he looks even better so Hillary will get help and maybe we can unite this country except for the 25 percent that will only be happy if it is a facist state.

Posted by: antonio3 | August 29, 2007 12:43 PM | Report abuse

"Conservatives do have standards, expectations, and accountability. "

Nope. Lies. more gop lies. Where has any of these three been the last 8 years. hope can you be held accountable if you have your cronies in postions to hold you accountable. You are a joke Zouk. All independant readers can see your people's lies.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 12:41 PM | Report abuse

I don't mean that Giuliani changed his positions on anything at that time. He just became a Republican cheerleader and made some particularly vicious comments after the debates and such. I felt like he went from being an amazing, unifying figure into a guy that used his post-911 fame to make nasty attacks against Kerry. I just found it hard to fathom why Giuliani thought he could attack Kerry's foreign policy and anti terrorism stances. Forgive me if this sounds crass, but it's not like Giuliani prevented 911, he just moved some rocks after his city got blown up. Likewise, I don't remember hearing about Giuliani's time in Vietnam. It sickened me that he could be such a pompous @$$ about a veteran (no matter what sort of man Kerry actually was).

That's why I don't like Giuliani anymore.

Posted by: JasonL | August 29, 2007 12:41 PM | Report abuse

"Conservatives do have standards, expectations, and accountability."

most hilarious post of the week...

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 12:40 PM | Report abuse

...Or Vitter, and in fact, he has.

Posted by: x | August 29, 2007 12:39 PM | Report abuse

'Saying that former Massachusetts Governor MItt Romney went out of his way to "distance" himself from Sen. Larry Craig yesterday would be a understatement. Romney called his former Idaho campaign chairman's behavior "disgusting," leaving little doubt about his feelings on the Idaho Senator's guilty plea on lewd conduct charges stemming from an incident in a men's room in the Minneapolis airport. But it isn't the only endorsement a 2008 candidate has run away from this year.

In June, after South Carolina Treasurer Thomas Ravenel was indicted on federal cocaine charges, Rudy Giuliani's campaign quickly announced its state chairman in South Carolina would be stepping down. And in July, Bob Allen, a Florida state representative who was serving as the co-chairman of McCain's Florida campaign, resigned from that post after being charged with soliciting an undercover male police officer for sex in a public bathroom.

Apart from those departures, however, normally risk-averse presidential candidates have not pushed aside some other potentially controversial supporters. After Louisiana Senator David Vitter, who was a regional chair of Giuliani's campaign in the South, was linked to an escort service in Washington, the former New York Mayor aid "some people disappoint you," but did not immediately distance himself from Vitter as Romney has with Craig.'

That's becaise Rudy would do the same thing as Larry Craig...

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 12:38 PM | Report abuse

"Conservatives do have standards, expectations, and accountability."

right. like when they plead guilty to a crime, then hold a press conference announcing their innocence. conservative accountability in action.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 12:37 PM | Report abuse

One need look no further than down the counter at the Red Arrow to find a military mom, Elaine Boule, the manager, who lost a brother-in-law to the war in Iraq and is about to abandon her lifelong pattern of backing Republicans to support a Democrat, possibly Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.).

That is typical, Donahue said: The military mom "would probably vote for a candidate who she thought would have credibility on foreign affairs, so that on the Democratic side is most likely to be Hillary Clinton." Most polling shows Clinton far ahead on the question of experience. She also scores an advantage among women generally -- and her campaign strategists think she will draw even more women, including Republicans, once voting begins.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 12:36 PM | Report abuse

"push the most radical of sexual agendas upon the masses"


so radical, in fact, that the other party engages in them as well.

the party of 'do what i say, not what i do' vs the party of 'do whatever you want'.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Republican former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani is having a hard time conveying his "mayor of September 11" persona in the state, she added. "The argument up here that [the] Giuliani-equals-9/11 response doesn't seem to be getting across, in part because he hasn't campaigned here all that much," Donahue said. "But it's really because you don't get asked just one thing at the town hall meetings in New Hampshire. You get asked 25 things. So if you have a good answer on one question it doesn't get you home. You have to answer the other 24. And he's vague on a lot of things."

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Conservatives, particularly faith-based conservatives, expect the GOP to sheriff out the miscreants among its ranks. Liberals have no moral standards thus making it nearly impossible for a liberal to ever be accused of being a hypocrite. That also explains why they celebrate an adulterous President, push the most radical of sexual agendas upon the masses, and mock the aberrations of the other side.

Conservatives do have standards, expectations, and accountability.

Posted by: the difference | August 29, 2007 12:33 PM | Report abuse

When Republicans engage in sex scandals or clear-cut corruption, they resign or face the wrath of their constituents -- ask Mark Foley, Jack Ryan, Bob Livingston, Bob Packwood, Ed Schrock and Don Sherwood, among others. When Democrats engage in sex scandals or clear-cut corruption, they retain their seats as long as they keep the cash flowing -- just ask Gerry Studds (re-elected six times after having sex with a male congressional page), Barney Frank (re-elected eight times after his gay lover ran a male escort ring out of his apartment), Mel Reynolds (re-elected despite facing an indictment for sexual assault and criminal sexual abuse of a 16-year-old campaign worker), Sen. Charles Robb (re-elected despite credible sex scandal allegations) and Gus Savage (re-elected despite fondling a Peace Corps volunteer).

Posted by: the party of continued corruption | August 29, 2007 12:30 PM | Report abuse

"Rufii, you got the wrong guy, I couldn't care less about your self-aggrandizement"

sO WHY MENTION IT. yoU PUT YOURSELF ON FRONT STREET. Ignore it if you must. Why the snide middle scholl comments?

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 12:28 PM | Report abuse

Rufii, you got the wrong guy, I couldn't care less about your self-aggrandizement, so it wasn't my post. And I ignore amd skip over those posts without a sig; makes the blog reading go by faster, since most of them are just clip-n-pastes anyway, nothing original.

So, back to the conversation for big-boys:

JasonL, you mention that Rudy went hardcore right in '04, and that turned you off. What do you mean by that? From what I can tell, he's locked into (ie, can't change without the Kerry/Mitt flipflop charge) positions like gun control, pro-choice, and other traditionally Dem positions.

PS You're right about DHS grants rarely covering maintenance, ongoing training, etc. And most locals, given an extra couple hundred grand, would rather buy 5 new cruisers or a new firetruck, rather than IT/comms equip, because it's simple and it's what they know. Then they gripe about interoperability...

Posted by: JD | August 29, 2007 12:21 PM | Report abuse


"March 4, 2007 -- A Pakistani immigrant is wanted by federal authorities on charges he channeled $30,000 in illegal contributions to Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's presidential war chest.

The FBI is hunting Los Angeles businessman Abdul Rehman Jinnah, who vanished soon after his grand-jury indictment for violating federal election laws last May.

Clinton's camp has denied any knowledge of Jinnah's scheme, which is also alleged to have funneled more than $50,000 in illegal donations to the political action committees of Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), the Los Angeles Times reported yesterday.

Jinnah, 56, a cellphone and frozen-yogurt businessman, allegedly collected campaign donations from family members, friends and employees at fake fund-raising events - then reimbursed them. The scam allowed him to evade the $2,000 limit on individual contributions to candidates, the feds say.

He is believed to have fled to his native Pakistan after his indictment on charges of conspiracy and making illegal campaign contributions.

The FBI has posted Jinnah's mug shot on its featured fugitive list.

Clinton's campaign said Jinnah's allegedly illegal contributions would be donated to charity. A representative said the campaign had no knowledge of Jinnah's activities and had not been contacted by federal investigators. "

Afterword: None, not one dime, of the illegal money has ever been returned. Furthermore, there are ongoing investigations of Clinton's receiving similarly illegal contributions from other Indian and Chinese sources, payback for her and her husbands ownership in and support for outsourcing. "The worst", the most corrupt administration in American history may just be on our horizon if the Clinton wingnuts get their way....

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 12:18 PM | Report abuse

I live here in Flori-duh most of the time. The republicans are fooling themselves if they think they'll win down here. However... they do have the option of pulling off another 2000 $ellection trick. The will of the people means nothing to them.

Posted by: GUY FOX | August 29, 2007 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Right it's not about money. Money is nothig but paper. It's assests. Where are our ASSESTS going as americans? Who is beifeiting from the deaths of americans? Where is the money going from the "war on terror".

We need an assest switch. Like mstessyrue says. BAck to using our "blood and treasure" to do what's best for the nation. Not what's best for isreal saudi arabia and the republicans. Sell-out fascsit traitors.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 12:01 PM | Report abuse

As the presidential debates heat up and tensions increase, the candidates need to be reminded of the critical issues that still trouble our society today. Issue such as global poverty needs to be address by our candidates to each other and to the general public. As one of the nations that has pledge to fulfill the goals of Millennium Development Project, whose goal is the elimination of world hunger and poverty, the Bush Administration has not shown any substantial action to bring this fundamental problem to a stop. According to the Borgen Project, dedicated to fighting and ending Poverty around the world, only $19 billion dollars are needed annually to stop world wide poverty, hunger and malnutrition. However, more than $340 billion dollars has been poured into this "war on terror." And each year, our country has a military budge of $522 billion dollars. It's time for a new leader who will be addressing an issue that affects 1.2 billion people everyday worldwide.

Posted by: Mstessyrue | August 29, 2007 11:54 AM | Report abuse

I feel you mikeb. Read that convo a little deeper. I mentioned the franklin quote and someone asked my " what franklin would think of car bombs and muslim terrorists, blah blah blah."

I was merely illistrating the point that Franklin's time was 100 times more trying than now. What do we as americans have to sacrafice compared to franklin and his people? That's it. Take it easy partner. I know my history. I think you are misreading.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 11:53 AM | Report abuse

rufus, all - I wasn't trying to defend the terrorists. It's a simple fact, however, that someone "terrorist" today might just be someone elses "patriot" tomorrow. A lot of what is posted on this forum shows a profound ignorance of history. This goes for everything from the crimes and underhanded dealings of the Clinton's during their time in the Whithouse -to- the very reason Teddy Roosevelt and COngress enacted the Sherman AntiTrust Act -to- illegal immigrants and the 14th Amendment -to- the writings of Thomas Jefferson warning us about allowing banks and corporations and investors too much power. If people read a bit more, and read widely, we took that knowledge and put it to good use, we wouldn't be in the mess we are in today.

Posted by: MikeB | August 29, 2007 11:47 AM | Report abuse

"Wow, Rufus. It really wasn't a bad post. But then you ruined it with your self aggrandizing at 11:13am. Sigh."

How does that effect you thoguh JD. I don't get you people at all. I know why I come here. Why do you people come here. To fight verbally? That's not what this is supposed to be a bout. We can all grow. We can all grow throguh conversation but you need to be willing to change.

I don't understand why what I do hurts your people's feelings so much. I must say I don't give two sh**s about your gop'er feelings. I watch to much Fox to care about your feelings. How much does Fox care abotu liberals feelings? Rush? Coulter? Bush and HIS GOVERNMENT. Do they care about the other side? Why then do you people play the high and mighty act?

If you can't take the heat get out ofthe kitchen. Pat TIllman hurts MY feelings. 4000 dead soldiers hurts my feelings. The destruction of my country by the gop for partisan political purposes hurts my feelings. Do you gop'ers care about that? No. So why should WE hold your feelings in such high regard

Pratice what you preach for once. If you can't take the ehat, get out of the kitchen (like many here did). I'm sure there are still people reading. I'm sure bush's patriot act cronies are still spying. I'm sure young kids are still reading, to scare to chime in. Fear doesn't exist. God is the judge. Not me, not zouk not JD. God has a plan. Me here today, you, are just a small part of it. Think about the big picture.

Posted by: rufus1133 | August 29, 2007 11:47 AM | Report abuse

I count two people who can still tolerate the rufas and coward show. Reminds one of Air America, doesn't it?

you two peas enjoy your sad little pathetic liberal pod.

Posted by: the adults | August 29, 2007 11:46 AM | Report abuse

You gop'er are little winey women. Middle school girls.

You love to dish out but cannot take it. Hypocrites.

I will not leave until I am forced out. That's where we are. So what are you to do, gop'ers.

You have options. YOUR options have nothing to do with me. I will do me, you do you.

If you cannot compete, don't try. But don't cry about it.

and zouk

"Rufus posts - the Terrorists won!"

The terrorists are not only from the middle east. False flag terrorism. Bush is the biggest terrorist in the world, this is true. The terrorists haven't won yet. They gave me a scare. But the american people rejected you fascsim, and you party is about to be eliminated for political relevance for a generation.

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 11:35 AM | Report abuse

'hey blog all day and night so you don't have to.'

no that would be you, zouk. i see you come on at 11:30 now instead of 12. but now you'll be on all day of course, under different names, but always the hateful democrat bashing... the Clinton Derangement, you just can't stop thinking about Hillary. It's sad for you. why the longer shift now?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 11:35 AM | Report abuse

Zouk, you spend so much time dwelling on Democrats past. One who has been out of office for eight years now, and another who has been out of office for over a quarter of a century.

Isn't it time to dwell a little on the problems within your own party; and how to correct them?

It would seem that they are now equal to, or have even passed, those of the Democrats.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 11:31 AM | Report abuse

If you can't take the heat, zouk.

This is not a game. This is not romper room. If you can't take political discourse, DON'T.

Bye Bye.

I told you how to get me off this site. It's not my fault you refuse.

You can't run with the big dogs if you don't get off the porch. :)


Don't be scared zouk. Tell me how I'm wrong. That's allI want. If you can't that must mean I'm right. What are you scared of?

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Wow, Rufus. It really wasn't a bad post. But then you ruined it with your self aggrandizing at 11:13am. Sigh.

JD, in addition to the difficulties with interoperability, typically DHS funds only allow for initial purchases, but rarely are there additional funds for upkeep or, in some cases, usage fee's.

There was a story recently, I think in the Baltimore Sun, about how SWAT and bomb squad teams in MD couldn't use some of the new tech they got because they couldn't afford the contracts.

Rudy's plan isn't bad. He's going to need those states to balance out his losses in states with a more socially conservative base. I used to like Giuliani. I thought we was a good smart moderate. Governor O'Malley used a number of Giuliani's tactics in Baltimore when O'Malley was still the Mayor to some success. Giuliani just got so rabidly Republican during the '04 cycle that I got turned off.

Posted by: JasonL | August 29, 2007 11:28 AM | Report abuse

"Guiliaini is the worst of the lot. Tried to cancel the elections so he could continue as Mayor as long as he felt like."

Actually Cherry, he tried to get the Mayoral election postponed - but you got the gist of it correct.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Why does Bill Clinton wear underwear? To keep his ankles warm

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Rufus posts - the Terrorists won!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 11:25 AM | Report abuse

I see the Ignorant coward and rufas show is on the air today with the blogging for the braindead hour. they blog all day and night so you don't have to.

and now we return to the loony lefty libs radio show, brought to you by the Kos haters anonymous.

"Zooo-ouk! ZOUK, honey! Stop pouting and lick the Larry-pop!

Posted by: Larry Craig | August 29, 2007 12:52 AM

followed by 15 posts in an hour beginning around 9 am. Enjoy talking to yourself loser? then we get the guests Truth denier and rufas. no wonder not a single person is still visiting this blog.

Even the flat earth naval gazers who generally support the moonbat mutual admiration society have fled.

CC - you did this to yourself. enjoy your imbeciles.

Posted by: the adults | August 29, 2007 11:21 AM | Report abuse

:). They like me. They really like me :)

Just kidding. All my posts are on point. You people just can't hear the truth I'm spreading. Sometimes it is one or two philsophical notches to high.

Someone once told me here "I've never heard that." Like I can mold my posts to you people. I'll just do me. I'll leave it to the rest of you to research. :)

Thanks ghost man

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 11:13 AM | Report abuse

rufus, that (10:52) was the best post you have ever made. it is up there with the really good posts ever. seriously.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 11:07 AM | Report abuse

"rufus, what you and many others here disregard is history. Franklin and the other Founding Father would have been the guys using the car bombs! At the time of the American Revolution, it was considered a war crime to not stand up in a line and fire away at your opponent from 50 yards or so"

i FEEL YOU mikeb. I didn't want to take t to that level. But I wasn't talking about practicality. I was talking about the situation philsophically. Are we better off militarily now than when we were fighting the british? Who is the more "scary" foe. People on mules with ak's NOW, or the britsih then? Didn't the bristish take the capital? Didn't they take NY? The terrorist could never even take ONE of our major cities REAL AMEricans wouldn't allow it. Show how scared should we be, compared to what franklin and his compatriots were dealing with.

And franklin still said:

"Those that would sacrafice freedom for security deserve neither"

Posted by: rufus | August 29, 2007 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Anon... And, we can't "afford" Social Security. Hell is the reign of the Bush bully boys.

http://whathappenedtomycountry.blogspot.com

Posted by: Truth Hunter | August 29, 2007 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Hell in a nutshell:

$50,000,000,000 more.

On top of the $147,000,000,000 for the Iraq-Afghanistan supplemental.

On top of a defense budget of $460,000,000,000.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 10:29 AM | Report abuse

n its story today about Craig's arrest, the Statesman revealed that it had uncovered evidence of other Craig liaisons or sexual advances, including allegations that he had sex with a man in a Union Station bathroom in Washington, D.C., but had not previously reported it. "Until Monday, the Statesman had declined to run a story about Craig's sex life, because the paper didn't have enough corroborating evidence and because of the senator's steadfast denial."

But the paper also revealed, "Over five months, the Statesman examined rumors about Craig dating to his college days and his 1982 pre-emptive denial that he had sex with underage congressional pages. The most serious finding by the Statesman was the report by a professional man with close ties to Republican officials. The 40-year-old man reported having oral sex with Craig at Washington's Union Station, probably in 2004. The Statesman also spoke with a man who said Craig made a sexual advance toward him at the University of Idaho in 1967 and a man who said Craig "cruised" him for sex in 1994 at the REI store in Boise. The Statesman also explored dozens of allegations that proved unclear, or unverifiable."

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 10:17 AM | Report abuse

NEW YORK (AP) -- Leona Helmsley's dog will continue to live an opulent life, and then be buried alongside her in a mausoleum. But two of Helmsley's grandchildren got nothing from the late luxury hotelier and real estate billionaire's estate.


Leona Helmsley holds her dog, Trouble, in a 2003 photo.

Helmsley left her beloved white Maltese, named Trouble, a $12 million trust fund, according to her will, which was made public Tuesday in surrogate court.

Posted by: 'only little people pay taxes' | August 29, 2007 10:07 AM | Report abuse

The real question for Republicans in Washington is how low can you go, because we are approaching a level of ridiculousness," said Mr. Reed, sounding exasperated in an interview on Tuesday morning. "You can't make this stuff up. And the impact this is having on the grass-roots around the country is devastating. Republicans think the governing class in Washington are a bunch of buffoons who have total disregard for the principles of the party, the law of the land and the future of the country."

Then again, Washington does not have a monopoly on the latest trend among Republicans. Just ask Thomas Ravenel, the state treasurer of South Carolina, who had to step down as state chairman of Rudolph W. Giuliani's presidential campaign after he was indicted on cocaine charges in June.

Or Bob Allen, a state representative in Florida who was jettisoned from the John McCain campaign last month after he was arrested on charges of soliciting sex in a public restroom.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Forget Mark Foley of Florida, who quit the House last year after exchanging sexually explicit e-mail messages with under-age male pages, or Jack Abramoff, the lobbyist whose dealings with the old Republican Congress landed him in prison. They are old news, replaced by a fresh crop of scandal-plagued Republicans, men like Senator David Vitter of Louisiana, whose phone number turned up on the list of the so-called D.C. Madam, or Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska and Representative Rick Renzi of Arizona, both caught up in F.B.I. corruption investigations.

It is enough to make a self-respecting Republican want to tear his hair out in frustration, especially as the party is trying to defend an unpopular war, contain the power of the new Democratic majority on Capitol Hill and generate some enthusiasm among voters heading toward the presidential election in 2008.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Scott Reed, a Republican strategist, was at a dinner in Philadelphia on Monday night when his cellphone and Internet pager began beeping like crazy. Only later did he learn why. His party was buzzing with news of a sex scandal involving a Republican United States senator -- again.

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Just when Republicans thought things could not get any worse, Senator Larry E. Craig of Idaho confirmed that he had pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of disorderly conduct after an undercover police officer accused him of soliciting sex in June in a Minneapolis airport restroom. On Tuesday, Mr. Craig, 62, held a news conference to defend himself, calling the guilty plea "a mistake" and declaring, "I am not gay" -- even as the Senate Republican leadership asked for an Ethics Committee review.

It was a bizarre spectacle, and only the latest in a string of accusations of sexual foibles and financial misdeeds that have landed Republicans in the political equivalent of purgatory, the realm of late-night comic television.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 9:54 AM | Report abuse

The extra money for Iraq would be in addition to the approximately $460 billion in the defense budget and it will probably be added to the $147 billion supplemental bill to pay for Afghanistan and Iraq. The Post breaks it down: "the cost of the war in Iraq now exceeds $3 billion a week."

All borrowed from the Chinese government, of course.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 9:52 AM | Report abuse

The Washington Post leads with word that the Bush administration wants more money for the Iraq war and is planning to ask Congress for up to $50 billion next month.

Posted by: the bottomless pit | August 29, 2007 9:51 AM | Report abuse

The Los Angeles Times, USA Today, and the Wall Street Journal's world-wide newsbox lead with new census figures that show the number of people without health insurance increased by 3.2 million in 2006 to a grand total of 47 million.. At a time when President Bush is in a fight with Congress over health insurance for children, the LAT points out the number of uninsured children grew by 600,000.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 9:50 AM | Report abuse

Guiliaini is the worst of the lot. Tried to cancel the elections so he could continue as Mayor as long as he felt like.

No thank you. Most of us Floridians beleive in democracy.

Posted by: Cherry | August 29, 2007 9:36 AM | Report abuse

"Jesus Christ, the man banned dancing! Don't make the mistake I did and vote for him."


Where's Kevin Bacon when you need him? Commissioner, I think we should activate the Bacon Signal!


.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 9:19 AM | Report abuse

By stark and dispositive contrast, those who are pining for an attack on Iran -- from the Weekly Standard to the AEI and various generic warmongers of the Dick Cheney/National Review type, as well as our evangelical Christian warriors -- are zelaous adherents, True Believers. Bringing about a military confrontation with Iran has always been, and continues to be, their paramount priority.

As but one example, "Democrat" Hiam Saban, who funds Pollack's work at the Brookings Institution, described himself thusly: "I'm a one-issue guy and my issue is Israel . . . .On the issues of security and terrorism I am a total hawk." The two most extremist factions when it comes to the Middle East -- Israel-centric neoconservatives and Christian evangelicals -- have long been telling the President that overthrowing Iran is his most important mission, the ultimate challenge that history will use to judge his strength, character and conviction. And it is beyond question that those are the groups who continue to hold the greatest sway over the decision-making process of the Commander-in-Chief himself.

Who is going to match the zeal and influence of these warmongers in order to stop them? The notion of attacking Iran is insane, but it is not considered such by our mainstream establishment. Those who muse about it openly -- Lieberman, McCain, Giuliani, Kristol, Max Boot -- are not considered fringe extremists or unserious radicals, even though they are.

We are truly living in an age of insanity. We may well not survive it.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Pollack and O'Hanlon following their return from Iraq. In addition to including even more propaganda-bolstering claims about Iraq than was found in their Op-Ed, Djerejian noted that the report, also feeds the flimsiest administration case for war against Iran, including truly idiotic claims about "Iran's ability to supply al-Qa'ida" -- accusations so absurd that nobody other than Joe Lieberman has been willing to voice them. That's from our most Serious "liberal" foreign policy "scholars" -- Iran is arming Al Qaeda. Al queda, who is the sworn Sunni enemy of Shiite Iran

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 9:12 AM | Report abuse

More disturbingly still, we have the same exact cast of neoconservative warmongers who brought us the invasion of Iraq, now chirping away ever more loudly, performing their tough guy war dances while beating their little chests and urging on new wars. More explicit war demands are now issuing from the warped though representative likes of Max Boot (of the Council for Foreign Relations and Norm Podhoretz's Commentary Magazine) -- who wants to invade Syria and bomb the Damascus airport -- and then fueled by fresh-faced war cheerleaders like James Kirchick, who simultaneously (and revealingly) serves as Marty Peretz's assistant and writes both for the "liberal" New Republic and Podhoretz's Commentary blog. Yesterday, Kirchick swaggered up and proclaimed:

'Max is right on the crucial point, which is that Syria and Iran have effectively declared war on us. Make of that what you will. But it's not "warmongering" to simply state the fact that two rogue states are themselves complicit in unwarranted acts of warmongering against the United States and a nascent democracy in the Middle East.'

They want a war not only with Iran, but also with Syria -- as do their ideological comrades such as Joe Lieberman, the only person whom Bush quoted yesterday in his speech.

Posted by: we will have a draft | August 29, 2007 9:10 AM | Report abuse

To underscore the fact that this is not mere rhetoric, the U.S. military in Iraq, following Bush's speech, arrested and detained eight Iranian energy experts meeting in Baghdad with the Iraqi government -- handcuffing, blindfolding, and interrogating them -- only to then release them when the Iraqi government protested. The path we are on -- with 160,000 of our troops in Iran's neighbor, escalating war-threatening rhetoric, and increasingly provocative acts -- is obviously the path to war.
The Iraq debate is over, at least from the perspective of actual results. It has been over for some time. The Congress is never going to force Bush to withdraw from Iraq. We are going to remain in Iraq in more or less the same posture through the end of the Bush presidency. That is just a fait accompli. The real issue of grave importance that remains unresolved is Iran, and it is hard to find causes of optimism there either.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Viewed through the prism of presidential jargon, Bush's vow -- "We will confront this danger before it is too late" -- is synonymous with a pledge to attack Iran unless our list of demands are met. He is unmistakably proclaiming that unless Iran gives up its nuclear program and fundamentally changes its posture in the Middle East, "we will confront this danger." What possible scenario could avert this outcome?

By now it is unmistakably clear that it is not merely Iran's nuclear program. As Scott Ritter and others have long pointed out, the fear-mongering warnings about an Iranian "nuclear holocaust" (obviously redolent of Condoleezza Rice's Iraqi smoking gun "mushroom cloud") is but the pretext to achieve the true goal -- regime change in Tehran. Bush all but said so yesterday:

'We seek an Iran whose government is accountable to its people -- instead of to leaders who promote terror and pursue the technology that could be used to develop nuclear weapons.'

In other words, we "seek" a new government in Iran. Are there really people left who believe, with confidence, that Bush is going to leave office without commencing or provoking a military confrontation with Iran?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Scott from NYC, you don't say why you were arrested, but we'd be interested to hear the whole story. I'm pretty sure you can't just be arrested for 'dancing' as you call it, just because 'the mayor wanted your fingerprints' on file.

Living in NJ during that time, I remember quite well the problems NYC faced during Dinkens reign of terror, and how impressed I was when Rudy cleaned that place up immensely (times square, reducing the nuisance crimes, panhandlers, budgets, etc).

To be fair, a big portion of the balanced budget may have come from the skyrocketing property assessments, combined with a NASDAQ runup resulting in huge bonuses for the glitterati that live on the upper west side.

Posted by: JD | August 29, 2007 8:57 AM | Report abuse

ut even including all that, CEO pay can look like chump change next to private equity and hedge fund managers' pay. Those managers made an average of $657.5 million in 2006 - more than 16,000 times what the average full-time worker makes, and roughly 61 times that of the average CEO.

Posted by: these people don't pay taxes--but you do | August 29, 2007 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Dick, your comment about interoperability among 1st responder comms is interesting. I hadn't been following this blog, but I know something about this subject, trust me.

The problem with radios is, traditionally the feds provide the $ (through grants) and the locals buy whatever bubba-net radios they want, usually the sheriff's brother in law sells them, etc. In big towns like NYC, there is distributed buying - fire gets theirs, police theirs, etc, and they all have different requirements (battery life, size/weight, interface, etc). This leads to different vendors, frequencies, waveforms...and limited interoperability.

I know it's in fashion to blame government about not having interoperable comms, but it's not that easy; can you imagine a 1000-person party line during an emergency?

There is a solution coming called Project 25 (or just P 25 for short), but it's still a few years out until DHS can get their act together. It's a hard problem. And Rudy had nothing to do with it, nor does any current mayor or governor.

Posted by: JD | August 29, 2007 8:52 AM | Report abuse

The top 20 CEOs of U.S. companies made an average of $36.4 million in 2006. That's 204 times that of the 20 highest paid U.S. military generals, and 38 times that of the 20 highest-paid non-profit leaders. They also made three times more than the top 20 CEOs of European companies who had booked higher sales numbers than their U.S. counterparts.

The pay gap numbers don't include the value of the many perks CEOs receive, which averaged $438,342, according to the report. Nor do they include the pension benefits CEOs receive.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 8:51 AM | Report abuse

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Pay comparisons almost always leave someone feeling dwarfed, and none more so than the CEO-to-worker pay gap. But even CEOs have reason to feel seriously dwarfed these days, thanks to the outsized paychecks of private equity and hedge fund managers.

The average CEO of a large U.S. company made roughly $10.8 million last year, or 364 times that of U.S. full-time and part-time workers, who made an average of $29,544, according to a joint analysis released Wednesday by the liberal Institute for Policy Studies and United for a Fair Economy.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 29, 2007 8:49 AM | Report abuse

I should add... after 9/11 Rudy attempted to cancel the elections so he could remain mayor indefinitely. Only Sir Giuliani could lead the City in the aftermath.

Posted by: Scott from NYC | August 29, 2007 8:40 AM | Report abuse

Sure blame the mayor for defective radios! It is now 2007 and STILL there is no system for sale which does what the unions claim Rudy "denied" them. Hint hint (unions). The only system which comes close was designed AFTER 911 with FEDERAL money (that awful GW guy). To the dummycrat liberal facts just get in the way and they think Randy Roads or what ever the twit's name is an expert on communications technology.

Posted by: DIck Tuck | August 29, 2007 8:28 AM | Report abuse

"By in large"?

It's "by and large".

Posted by: Dave | August 29, 2007 7:06 AM | Report abuse

I just wanted to make sure that anyone still considering voting for Giuliani should read a quote from one of his speeches.

If you want to be free in the USA that is:

"We see only the oppressive side of authority. Maybe it comes out of our history and our background. What we don't see is that freedom is not a concept in which people can do anything they want, be anything they can be. Freedom is about authority. Freedom is about the willingness of every single human being to cede to lawful authority a great deal of discretion about what you do."

If you want a dictator then just elect him and you will get it.

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9A01E2D9173CF933A15750C0A962958260

If you want to be free and save the constitution then VOTE for:
RON PAUL 2008

Posted by: Danno123 | August 29, 2007 1:05 AM | Report abuse

Zooo-ouk! ZOUK, honey! Stop pouting and lick the Larry-pop!

Posted by: Larry Craig | August 29, 2007 12:52 AM | Report abuse

I grew up in Brooklyn back in the day, voted for Guiliani after his first term, he did clean up the City. But when he runs out of bad guys, he goes after the good.

Second term he arrested hundreds of thousands of youth and threw us in jail - including me. Most unlike me were minorities so that's why the MSM doesn't cover it.

Every time I bring this up here in New York, at least one other person in the room admits to being arrested. He wanted our fingerprints.

Jesus Christ, the man banned dancing! Don't make the mistake I did and vote for him.

God forbid he becomes President.

I'm a Republican that voted for and still supports Bush (on Iraq).

Posted by: Scott from NYC | August 29, 2007 12:23 AM | Report abuse

DCbriefing.com

Posted by: DC | August 28, 2007 11:53 PM | Report abuse

while i appreciate the rather lengthy discussion on why President Bush is leading us to tyranny - believing it on the other hand is a fools game since any polysci student could easily write the same essay convincing us that President Clinton also was engaged in leading us to a tyranny. ie waco, elian gonzales, and how many us attorneys did President Clinton dismiss during his term ???? come on you'll have to do better than that.

Posted by: common sense | August 28, 2007 11:33 PM | Report abuse

I can not believe how many people think Rudy can win the nomination. Rudy is not a conservative, therefore, he can not win the primary. Rudy is anti-gun, pro-amnesty, pro-abortion, and pro-McCain/Feingold CFR. All of those positions are at odds with conservatives. And who votes in the Republican primaries? That's right, Conservatives. My man Mitt will runaway with the nomination. It will not be close.

Posted by: trojan140 | August 28, 2007 10:53 PM | Report abuse

to be honest i hope ron paul wins. but if he doesnt all i care about is that hillary or rudy dont win it. and does anyone even know that both of them completely agree on virtually every subject facing this country in spite of the fact on is a republican and the other is a dem. wake up people. both of them are evil, corrupt, and retarded; but more especially, they don't care about you.

Posted by: a true patriot | August 28, 2007 10:26 PM | Report abuse

I live in Florida. My RNC friends and I will never vote for Rudy. Never ever. Not sure who he polls but they sure aren't calling us.

Posted by: Roger Elliott | August 28, 2007 9:12 PM | Report abuse

Have to pop Rudy's bubble on this. As a FLA resident, I know for a fact that Romney is all the rage with Sunshine State Republicans. Anyone with Jeb's posse on their side is golden. But it's hard to imagine this lovefest with Mitt cn really last.

http://political-buzz.com/

Posted by: matt | August 28, 2007 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Rudy is a scab-sucking Authoritarian, NOT a real Republican.

I'm a "Yank" (as other commenters put it)and while I live in Massachusetts instead of Florida, or New York, I have always seen Rudy for the liar and fraud that he is- even before September 11, 2001. Please don't assume that "Yanks" in general are "for" Rudy.

As soon as my husband's residency is complete here in Massachusetts, we are moving to New Hampshire, where small Government is the rule, not the exception.

There are some really informative (and funny) videos about Rudy on YouTube.com. A YouTube member named "TouchingYou" has the best I've seen-- this guy has actually been arrested by Rudy and then sued & WON a lawsuit because Rudy wanted him to stop telling people about Rudy's lies.

That's only one person, but there are MANY who've put their videos up on YouTube and LiveLeak.com and other viseo sharing sites about Rudy having them arrested at public speaking engagements, town hall events, etc. when they ask Rudy to answer simple questions.

Rudy 0wnz the NAFTA Superhighway. Google: Giuliani NAFTA. Then toss into that mix two words "law firm".

Have fun! While you're still kinda-sorta "Free."

If you are looking for a principled candidate with over 30 years' experience in Congress (who also happens to be a medical doctor), and who served in the armed forces- a Statesman who has NEVER voted to raise taxes, never voted for any law which was UNConstitutional...

Then please Google these two words: Ron Paul


Posted by: Jenifer | August 28, 2007 8:54 PM | Report abuse

rufus, what you and many others here disregard is history. Franklin and the other Founding Father would have been the guys using the car bombs! At the time of the American Revolution, it was considered a war crime to not stand up in a line and fire away at your opponent from 50 yards or so. After trying that for a bit, the American revolutionaries hide behind trees and haystacks and rocks shot the British forces and the German mercinaries to pieces. Those men did a lot of things, many of them horrible and many of them considered "terrorist attacks" by the British authorities of the day. THAT, mind you, is why they hung American patriots.

Posted by: MikeB | August 28, 2007 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Florida is happily New York City's 6th and souternmost borough. We have lots of history and ties that bind us.
At their own peril $$$$$, the DNC and RNC can try to disenfranchise us in the primaries. COME November 2008, Florida will pick the New York City Candidate that will be as good for Florida, its loyal 6th borrough, as it is for the City's other 5!
America, will you please get over an election 8 years ago?! We gave you Gatorde for pete's sake! That's gotta count for something.

Rudy, Rudy, Rudy!!!!

GW
Tampa, FL

Posted by: GW_Tampa | August 28, 2007 7:53 PM | Report abuse

One more comment before I leave for the day.

To the person above that asked what Franklin would say about car bombs.

They were fighting for OUR freedom back then.

Now they are fighting for money and power. Money and power that don't really exist. Money can be re-printed. Power, in this country, can be taken within five years, voted out. The only power thye have is the power we give them.

So are our troops fighting for nothing then? Dying for nothing? I can ask that since I am a former Infantry soldier. I say our troops are not dying for this great nation. They are dying for bush's legacy. They are dying to put money in certain people's hands. They are dying for republicans.

That's why I hate you people so much. If you people sent my brothers and sisters to defend this great nation, good. That's what should happen. The last 7 years has not been that. And who is paying for that? Zouk? Bush? Rush? No. I am and those like me

Posted by: rufus | August 28, 2007 7:37 PM | Report abuse

You people frustrate me zouk. Does that make you people happy, getting others angry and frustrated? Like a elementary school child? Does it make you gop'ers giggle like little middle school girls?

Real productive. Real grown up. Real responsible.

Posted by: rufus | August 28, 2007 7:09 PM | Report abuse

This is not play time. Our current state as a nation is not amusing or funny. We should all be ashamed. My american shame has turned to those I feel are responsible. I think we can still fix the problem.

To me, most of the problems come from the GOP. Greed, hate, intolerance, racism, unwillingness to change. I also feel there are some sell-out traitor dem's in the also. Whose goal is to appear to be lefties. Who's only goals are to bide their time and waiting for their chance to sabotage.

When the money's right. Sad time for america. This is not a game. This is not play time.

I have a 6 year old and a 3month baby. This is not a game. Think about the future. Think about the history books. And for the love of the one true GOd, THink about your children. Money is nothing but paper. Those that live their lives to acquire money are wasting their lives. We only live once. Stop wasting your lives gop'ers.

Posted by: rufus | August 28, 2007 7:00 PM | Report abuse

The mroe I converse with you gop'er slaves the more I feel you are far beyond saving. You people are a lsot cause. It's one thing to be willful ignorant, and not know what's going on (about 30% of you gop'ers).

The other 70% of you gop'ers are well learned in history. You know what time it is yet you still side with the fascists. I'm not sure how to handle willfull hate, willfull ignorance, and willfull mind sleep. If somebody is wrong about knowingly wrong about something, one should be able to tell them how they are wrong and change SHOULD happen. I'm not sure how to handle people that swear the sky is red, and will not take blue for an answer. I guess all I can do is continue to marginalize you people so the next generation looks at you the same way I do.

I guess WE'LL just have to change society. Maybe if everybody else is into reality and the real world it will effect you people, cause it's into working now. Maybe you gop'ers are pack animals are can only compute if others agree. Maybe you gop'ers are robots and are the borg. If Rush bush or fox tells you something you must obey.

I don't get it. Why do you people waste your lives like this? Why do you people contineu to parrot known falsehoods? When will you join rality? How many deaths does your quota need?

Will it help if I asked you people to PLEASE stop being lying propogating fascsits? Would that change you? What do I have to do to get you people to aknowledge reality ONCE. One time?

Posted by: rufus | August 28, 2007 6:54 PM | Report abuse

J. Carpenter - Dirty bombs are bad, unless they are used to eliminate Clinton wing nuts, soccer moms and Bushies. Islamic exteemists are good if they are used to elinminate Clinton wing nuts, soccer moms, Bushies, corporate executives, invesoors, bankers, and NASCAR fans. "Breaching borders" would be a good name for a rock and roll band. Thank you.

Posted by: Ben Franklin | August 28, 2007 6:48 PM | Report abuse

"What did Franklin have to say about dirty bombs, Islamic extremists, and the necessity of stopping those individuals from breaching America's borders who would attempt to mured its citzens?"

I got you carpenter. Which times were more scary for america. Do you know anything about the american revolution? How did the military might of the u.s. then, compared to the english, differ from now.

Are we a stronger nation now to battle a bunch of goat herders with aks (vs our jet's tanks and equip.), as opposed to a rag tag army going up agaisnt the greatest fighting force of the time?

You need to read up about the american revolution carpenter, if you think we were better prepared to habdle the english in ranklin's time than we are now to fight a bunch of rebels on mules with ak's.

You just showed all independant thinkers out there how clueless the gop really is. Thank you for that.

Posted by: rufus1133 | August 28, 2007 6:43 PM | Report abuse

That's today

"1 million Shiite pilgrims forced to leave Karbala
Police abort religious celebration after clashes leave 51 dead, 247 wounded"


"BAGHDAD - Fighting erupted Tuesday between rival Shiite militias in Karbala during a religious festival, claiming 51 lives and forcing officials to abort the celebrations and order up to 1 million Shiite pilgrims to leave the southern city.

Security officials said Mahdi Army gunmen loyal to radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr fired on guards around two shrines protected by the Badr Brigade, the armed wing of the Supreme Islamic Iraqi Council.

Residents of Karbala contacted by telephone said snipers were firing on Iraqi security forces from rooftops. Explosions and the rattle of automatic weapons fire could be heard during telephone calls to reporters in the city 50 miles south of Baghdad."

Great. The sunni's pull out now this. It's really getting better over there. And pigs fly in the winter in texas too.

Posted by: rufus | August 28, 2007 6:38 PM | Report abuse

"Those that would sacrafice fredom for security deserve neither."

Ben Franklin

What did Franklin have to say about dirty bombs, Islamic extremists, and the necessity of stopping those individuals from breaching America's borders who would attempt to mured its citzens?

"The devil can cite scripture for his purpose."

--Shakespeare (?)

Posted by: J. Carpenter | August 28, 2007 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Doesn't Florida become less important since the GOP put in rules that strip away half of the delegates if they have a January primary? While winning the state will mean adding momentum to his campaign, won't his competitors simply tout that this gives him X votes, meaning he is far from getting the nomination. And if the nomination is close, it could mean approval of those lost delegates on the floor of the convention will be huge, not so the delegates themselves

Posted by: David | August 28, 2007 6:31 PM | Report abuse

Remember that clinton tried to lie his way out of it when caught - Rs face the music and take their punishment. Clinton and his wife tried to smear anyone who ever stood up to them, they have instilled fear in every other Dem candidate. the Dems say some anti clinton remark one day, (keep your own house clean) then backtrack the next to avoid IRS audits, public smearing and even maybe assassination. (even poor Buddy and sox are gone).


Let's review the Dem method:

1. Democrats in the House of Representatives moved to shut down the whole line of inquiry (raw power like Reid and Pelosi)

2. held in silence by Speaker Thomas Foley (D-WA) (cover up like Hillary)

3. Following public outcry, the Democratic leaders of the House were forced (flip-floppers on war and all)

4. the Democrats issuing a report saying the matter was closed, (you remember the debate is settled one don't you?)

5. Republican charges were largely ignored until ...pleaded guilty (pretend the charges are trumped up)

6. ...was convicted and sentenced ... (see list of corrupt Dems above)

7. Clinton later pardoned ... (subvert justice if it pays cash)

Well you remember dontcha?

Posted by: the clinton legacy | August 28, 2007 6:29 PM | Report abuse

"America was fortunate to have New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani as America's Mayor on that fateful day in September 2001. Soon to be President Giuliani steadied the nerves of our people by putting his ample reserves of courage into action. Rudy stood up to mass murderers, terrorists, and your average New York thug, as he lead America through one of it's most difficult crisis, and reversed a 50 year trend by Liberal Dimocrats in New York of committing a city-wide suicide (particularly in the 1970's, Dimocrats allowed 2,000+ murders a year to become 'normal' and 'acceptable'.) God Bless Mayor Giuliani."

My response?

"Those that would sacrafice fredom for security deserve neither."

Ben Franklin


Pretty is not always better. Maybe it is. But what a ridiculous argument

Posted by: rufus | August 28, 2007 6:23 PM | Report abuse

reversed a 50 year trend by Liberal Dimocrats in New York of committing a city-wide suicide

now the Dems want the entire nation to commit suicide.

go rudy, stop the corruption of the left.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 6:23 PM | Report abuse

I love watching those old 80s shows set in dirty disgusting times square. now it is like disneyworld.

go rudy, do it to DC next.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 6:19 PM | Report abuse

America was fortunate to have New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani as America's Mayor on that fateful day in September 2001. Soon to be President Giuliani steadied the nerves of our people by putting his ample reserves of courage into action. Rudy stood up to mass murderers, terrorists, and your average New York thug, as he lead America through one of it's most difficult crisis, and reversed a 50 year trend by Liberal Dimocrats in New York of committing a city-wide suicide (particularly in the 1970's, Dimocrats allowed 2,000+ murders a year to become 'normal' and 'acceptable'.) God Bless Mayor Giuliani.

Posted by: Kevin | August 28, 2007 6:18 PM | Report abuse


Craig: Bill Clinton "Bad", "Naughty" and "Nasty Boy"
Back in the Impeachment days in 1999, Sen. Larry Craig (R-ID) wouldn't stand for a censure of President Clinton. The People of Idaho, Craig told Meet the Press, would only settle for impeachment of such a "nasty boy."

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Please don't run your mouth until you read it. Then comment. that should go without saying, but we're dealing with dittoheads here.

Read it gop'ers. If you are more scared of goat herders half the way around the world than you are of your right's being taken here at home NOW, something is wrong with YOU not me.

"Those that would sacrafice fredom for security deserve neither."

Ben Franklin

Posted by: rufus | August 28, 2007 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Loudoun's earlier post:

"How much more would energy cost if we moved the 40-60 million transplants to sun belt states back to northern climates and had to heat them during winters?"

Instead, they live where they run the A/C 12 months of the year.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | August 28, 2007 02:43 PM

I live in Ohio and I would rather pay the electric bill in the summer to run my A/C than to pay my gas bill to heat my house in the winter. My highest electric bills are about $100/month during the summer. My highest gas bills are around $200-225/month in the winter. And I'm stingy with the heat in the winter. Something to think about. In the winter the temperature is usually anywhere from -5 F to as warm as 45 F. During the day I'll heat my house to about 70 F and at night I turn the heat back to the mid 50s F. The indoor temp. compared to the outdoor temp. during the day is at least 25 F and as high as 75 F or more. In the summer the biggest differential is about 25 F. Outdoor temp of no higher than 100 F and usually in the 80s or low 90s. I set the A/C at 74 or 75 F during the day. At night I set it at 65 F. Is it any wonder why my gas bill is so high in the winter compared to my electric bill in the summer?

Posted by: trojan140 | August 28, 2007 6:07 PM | Report abuse

"Rufas can you cover it for a while, coward is over at kos getting more talking points." You asked for it.


Zouk is a fascsit. :)


http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,,2064157,00.html


"Fascist America, in 10 easy steps


From Hitler to Pinochet and beyond, history shows there are certain steps that any would-be dictator must take to destroy constitutional freedoms. And, argues Naomi Wolf, George Bush and his administration seem to be taking them all

Last autumn, there was a military coup in Thailand. The leaders of the coup took a number of steps, rather systematically, as if they had a shopping list. In a sense, they did. Within a matter of days, democracy had been closed down: the coup leaders declared martial law, sent armed soldiers into residential areas, took over radio and TV stations, issued restrictions on the press, tightened some limits on travel, and took certain activists into custody

They were not figuring these things out as they went along. If you look at history, you can see that there is essentially a blueprint for turning an open society into a dictatorship. That blueprint has been used again and again in more and less bloody, more and less terrifying ways. But it is always effective. It is very difficult and arduous to create and sustain a democracy - but history shows that closing one down is much simpler. You simply have to be willing to take the 10 steps.
As difficult as this is to contemplate, it is clear, if you are willing to look, that each of these 10 steps has already been initiated today in the United States by the Bush administration.

Because Americans like me were born in freedom, we have a hard time even considering that it is possible for us to become as unfree - domestically - as many other nations. Because we no longer learn much about our rights or our system of government - the task of being aware of the constitution has been outsourced from citizens' ownership to being the domain of professionals such as lawyers and professors - we scarcely recognise the checks and balances that the founders put in place, even as they are being systematically dismantled. Because we don't learn much about European history, the setting up of a department of "homeland" security - remember who else was keen on the word "homeland" - didn't raise the alarm bells it might have.

It is my argument that, beneath our very noses, George Bush and his administration are using time-tested tactics to close down an open society. It is time for us to be willing to think the unthinkable - as the author and political journalist Joe Conason, has put it, that it can happen here. And that we are further along than we realise.

Conason eloquently warned of the danger of American authoritarianism. I am arguing that we need also to look at the lessons of European and other kinds of fascism to understand the potential seriousness of the events we see unfolding in the US.

1. Invoke a terrifying internal and external enemy

After we were hit on September 11 2001, we were in a state of national shock. Less than six weeks later, on October 26 2001, the USA Patriot Act was passed by a Congress that had little chance to debate it; many said that they scarcely had time to read it. We were told we were now on a "war footing"; we were in a "global war" against a "global caliphate" intending to "wipe out civilisation". There have been other times of crisis in which the US accepted limits on civil liberties, such as during the civil war, when Lincoln declared martial law, and the second world war, when thousands of Japanese-American citizens were interned. But this situation, as Bruce Fein of the American Freedom Agenda notes, is unprecedented: all our other wars had an endpoint, so the pendulum was able to swing back toward freedom; this war is defined as open-ended in time and without national boundaries in space - the globe itself is the battlefield. "This time," Fein says, "there will be no defined end."

Creating a terrifying threat - hydra-like, secretive, evil - is an old trick. It can, like Hitler's invocation of a communist threat to the nation's security, be based on actual events (one Wisconsin academic has faced calls for his dismissal because he noted, among other things, that the alleged communist arson, the Reichstag fire of February 1933, was swiftly followed in Nazi Germany by passage of the Enabling Act, which replaced constitutional law with an open-ended state of emergency). Or the terrifying threat can be based, like the National Socialist evocation of the "global conspiracy of world Jewry", on myth.

It is not that global Islamist terrorism is not a severe danger; of course it is. I am arguing rather that the language used to convey the nature of the threat is different in a country such as Spain - which has also suffered violent terrorist attacks - than it is in America. Spanish citizens know that they face a grave security threat; what we as American citizens believe is that we are potentially threatened with the end of civilisation as we know it. Of course, this makes us more willing to accept restrictions on our freedoms.

2. Create a gulag

Once you have got everyone scared, the next step is to create a prison system outside the rule of law (as Bush put it, he wanted the American detention centre at Guantánamo Bay to be situated in legal "outer space") - where torture takes place.

At first, the people who are sent there are seen by citizens as outsiders: troublemakers, spies, "enemies of the people" or "criminals". Initially, citizens tend to support the secret prison system; it makes them feel safer and they do not identify with the prisoners. But soon enough, civil society leaders - opposition members, labour activists, clergy and journalists - are arrested and sent there as well.

This process took place in fascist shifts or anti-democracy crackdowns ranging from Italy and Germany in the 1920s and 1930s to the Latin American coups of the 1970s and beyond. It is standard practice for closing down an open society or crushing a pro-democracy uprising.

With its jails in Iraq and Afghanistan, and, of course, Guantánamo in Cuba, where detainees are abused, and kept indefinitely without trial and without access to the due process of the law, America certainly has its gulag now. Bush and his allies in Congress recently announced they would issue no information about the secret CIA "black site" prisons throughout the world, which are used to incarcerate people who have been seized off the street.

Gulags in history tend to metastasise, becoming ever larger and more secretive, ever more deadly and formalised. We know from first-hand accounts, photographs, videos and government documents that people, innocent and guilty, have been tortured in the US-run prisons we are aware of and those we can't investigate adequately.

But Americans still assume this system and detainee abuses involve only scary brown people with whom they don't generally identify. It was brave of the conservative pundit William Safire to quote the anti-Nazi pastor Martin Niemöller, who had been seized as a political prisoner: "First they came for the Jews." Most Americans don't understand yet that the destruction of the rule of law at Guantánamo set a dangerous precedent for them, too.

By the way, the establishment of military tribunals that deny prisoners due process tends to come early on in a fascist shift. Mussolini and Stalin set up such tribunals. On April 24 1934, the Nazis, too, set up the People's Court, which also bypassed the judicial system: prisoners were held indefinitely, often in isolation, and tortured, without being charged with offences, and were subjected to show trials. Eventually, the Special Courts became a parallel system that put pressure on the regular courts to abandon the rule of law in favour of Nazi ideology when making decisions.

3. Develop a thug caste

When leaders who seek what I call a "fascist shift" want to close down an open society, they send paramilitary groups of scary young men out to terrorise citizens. The Blackshirts roamed the Italian countryside beating up communists; the Brownshirts staged violent rallies throughout Germany. This paramilitary force is especially important in a democracy: you need citizens to fear thug violence and so you need thugs who are free from prosecution.

The years following 9/11 have proved a bonanza for America's security contractors, with the Bush administration outsourcing areas of work that traditionally fell to the US military. In the process, contracts worth hundreds of millions of dollars have been issued for security work by mercenaries at home and abroad. In Iraq, some of these contract operatives have been accused of involvement in torturing prisoners, harassing journalists and firing on Iraqi civilians. Under Order 17, issued to regulate contractors in Iraq by the one-time US administrator in Baghdad, Paul Bremer, these contractors are immune from prosecution

Yes, but that is in Iraq, you could argue; however, after Hurricane Katrina, the Department of Homeland Security hired and deployed hundreds of armed private security guards in New Orleans. The investigative journalist Jeremy Scahill interviewed one unnamed guard who reported having fired on unarmed civilians in the city. It was a natural disaster that underlay that episode - but the administration's endless war on terror means ongoing scope for what are in effect privately contracted armies to take on crisis and emergency management at home in US cities.

Thugs in America? Groups of angry young Republican men, dressed in identical shirts and trousers, menaced poll workers counting the votes in Florida in 2000. If you are reading history, you can imagine that there can be a need for "public order" on the next election day. Say there are protests, or a threat, on the day of an election; history would not rule out the presence of a private security firm at a polling station "to restore public order".

4. Set up an internal surveillance system

In Mussolini's Italy, in Nazi Germany, in communist East Germany, in communist China - in every closed society - secret police spy on ordinary people and encourage neighbours to spy on neighbours. The Stasi needed to keep only a minority of East Germans under surveillance to convince a majority that they themselves were being watched.

In 2005 and 2006, when James Risen and Eric Lichtblau wrote in the New York Times about a secret state programme to wiretap citizens' phones, read their emails and follow international financial transactions, it became clear to ordinary Americans that they, too, could be under state scrutiny.

In closed societies, this surveillance is cast as being about "national security"; the true function is to keep citizens docile and inhibit their activism and dissent.

5. Harass citizens' groups

The fifth thing you do is related to step four - you infiltrate and harass citizens' groups. It can be trivial: a church in Pasadena, whose minister preached that Jesus was in favour of peace, found itself being investigated by the Internal Revenue Service, while churches that got Republicans out to vote, which is equally illegal under US tax law, have been left alone.

Other harassment is more serious: the American Civil Liberties Union reports that thousands of ordinary American anti-war, environmental and other groups have been infiltrated by agents: a secret Pentagon database includes more than four dozen peaceful anti-war meetings, rallies or marches by American citizens in its category of 1,500 "suspicious incidents". The equally secret Counterintelligence Field Activity (Cifa) agency of the Department of Defense has been gathering information about domestic organisations engaged in peaceful political activities: Cifa is supposed to track "potential terrorist threats" as it watches ordinary US citizen activists. A little-noticed new law has redefined activism such as animal rights protests as "terrorism". So the definition of "terrorist" slowly expands to include the opposition.

6. Engage in arbitrary detention and release

This scares people. It is a kind of cat-and-mouse game. Nicholas D Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, the investigative reporters who wrote China Wakes: the Struggle for the Soul of a Rising Power, describe pro-democracy activists in China, such as Wei Jingsheng, being arrested and released many times. In a closing or closed society there is a "list" of dissidents and opposition leaders: you are targeted in this way once you are on the list, and it is hard to get off the list.

In 2004, America's Transportation Security Administration confirmed that it had a list of passengers who were targeted for security searches or worse if they tried to fly. People who have found themselves on the list? Two middle-aged women peace activists in San Francisco; liberal Senator Edward Kennedy; a member of Venezuela's government - after Venezuela's president had criticised Bush; and thousands of ordinary US citizens.

Professor Walter F Murphy is emeritus of Princeton University; he is one of the foremost constitutional scholars in the nation and author of the classic Constitutional Democracy. Murphy is also a decorated former marine, and he is not even especially politically liberal. But on March 1 this year, he was denied a boarding pass at Newark, "because I was on the Terrorist Watch list".

"Have you been in any peace marches? We ban a lot of people from flying because of that," asked the airline employee.

"I explained," said Murphy, "that I had not so marched but had, in September 2006, given a lecture at Princeton, televised and put on the web, highly critical of George Bush for his many violations of the constitution."

"That'll do it," the man said.

Anti-war marcher? Potential terrorist. Support the constitution? Potential terrorist. History shows that the categories of "enemy of the people" tend to expand ever deeper into civil life.

James Yee, a US citizen, was the Muslim chaplain at Guantánamo who was accused of mishandling classified documents. He was harassed by the US military before the charges against him were dropped. Yee has been detained and released several times. He is still of interest.

Brandon Mayfield, a US citizen and lawyer in Oregon, was mistakenly identified as a possible terrorist. His house was secretly broken into and his computer seized. Though he is innocent of the accusation against him, he is still on the list.

It is a standard practice of fascist societies that once you are on the list, you can't get off.

7. Target key individuals

Threaten civil servants, artists and academics with job loss if they don't toe the line. Mussolini went after the rectors of state universities who did not conform to the fascist line; so did Joseph Goebbels, who purged academics who were not pro-Nazi; so did Chile's Augusto Pinochet; so does the Chinese communist Politburo in punishing pro-democracy students and professors.

Academe is a tinderbox of activism, so those seeking a fascist shift punish academics and students with professional loss if they do not "coordinate", in Goebbels' term, ideologically. Since civil servants are the sector of society most vulnerable to being fired by a given regime, they are also a group that fascists typically "coordinate" early on: the Reich Law for the Re-establishment of a Professional Civil Service was passed on April 7 1933.

Bush supporters in state legislatures in several states put pressure on regents at state universities to penalise or fire academics who have been critical of the administration. As for civil servants, the Bush administration has derailed the career of one military lawyer who spoke up for fair trials for detainees, while an administration official publicly intimidated the law firms that represent detainees pro bono by threatening to call for their major corporate clients to boycott them.

Elsewhere, a CIA contract worker who said in a closed blog that "waterboarding is torture" was stripped of the security clearance she needed in order to do her job.

Most recently, the administration purged eight US attorneys for what looks like insufficient political loyalty. When Goebbels purged the civil service in April 1933, attorneys were "coordinated" too, a step that eased the way of the increasingly brutal laws to follow.

8. Control the press

Italy in the 1920s, Germany in the 30s, East Germany in the 50s, Czechoslovakia in the 60s, the Latin American dictatorships in the 70s, China in the 80s and 90s - all dictatorships and would-be dictators target newspapers and journalists. They threaten and harass them in more open societies that they are seeking to close, and they arrest them and worse in societies that have been closed already.

The Committee to Protect Journalists says arrests of US journalists are at an all-time high: Josh Wolf (no relation), a blogger in San Francisco, has been put in jail for a year for refusing to turn over video of an anti-war demonstration; Homeland Security brought a criminal complaint against reporter Greg Palast, claiming he threatened "critical infrastructure" when he and a TV producer were filming victims of Hurricane Katrina in Louisiana. Palast had written a bestseller critical of the Bush administration.

Other reporters and writers have been punished in other ways. Joseph C Wilson accused Bush, in a New York Times op-ed, of leading the country to war on the basis of a false charge that Saddam Hussein had acquired yellowcake uranium in Niger. His wife, Valerie Plame, was outed as a CIA spy - a form of retaliation that ended her career.

Prosecution and job loss are nothing, though, compared with how the US is treating journalists seeking to cover the conflict in Iraq in an unbiased way. The Committee to Protect Journalists has documented multiple accounts of the US military in Iraq firing upon or threatening to fire upon unembedded (meaning independent) reporters and camera operators from organisations ranging from al-Jazeera to the BBC. While westerners may question the accounts by al-Jazeera, they should pay attention to the accounts of reporters such as the BBC's Kate Adie. In some cases reporters have been wounded or killed, including ITN's Terry Lloyd in 2003. Both CBS and the Associated Press in Iraq had staff members seized by the US military and taken to violent prisons; the news organisations were unable to see the evidence against their staffers.

Over time in closing societies, real news is supplanted by fake news and false documents. Pinochet showed Chilean citizens falsified documents to back up his claim that terrorists had been about to attack the nation. The yellowcake charge, too, was based on forged papers.

You won't have a shutdown of news in modern America - it is not possible. But you can have, as Frank Rich and Sidney Blumenthal have pointed out, a steady stream of lies polluting the news well. What you already have is a White House directing a stream of false information that is so relentless that it is increasingly hard to sort out truth from untruth. In a fascist system, it's not the lies that count but the muddying. When citizens can't tell real news from fake, they give up their demands for accountability bit by bit.

9. Dissent equals treason

Cast dissent as "treason" and criticism as "espionage'. Every closing society does this, just as it elaborates laws that increasingly criminalise certain kinds of speech and expand the definition of "spy" and "traitor". When Bill Keller, the publisher of the New York Times, ran the Lichtblau/Risen stories, Bush called the Times' leaking of classified information "disgraceful", while Republicans in Congress called for Keller to be charged with treason, and rightwing commentators and news outlets kept up the "treason" drumbeat. Some commentators, as Conason noted, reminded readers smugly that one penalty for violating the Espionage Act is execution.

Conason is right to note how serious a threat that attack represented. It is also important to recall that the 1938 Moscow show trial accused the editor of Izvestia, Nikolai Bukharin, of treason; Bukharin was, in fact, executed. And it is important to remind Americans that when the 1917 Espionage Act was last widely invoked, during the infamous 1919 Palmer Raids, leftist activists were arrested without warrants in sweeping roundups, kept in jail for up to five months, and "beaten, starved, suffocated, tortured and threatened with death", according to the historian Myra MacPherson. After that, dissent was muted in America for a decade.

In Stalin's Soviet Union, dissidents were "enemies of the people". National Socialists called those who supported Weimar democracy "November traitors".

And here is where the circle closes: most Americans do not realise that since September of last year - when Congress wrongly, foolishly, passed the Military Commissions Act of 2006 - the president has the power to call any US citizen an "enemy combatant". He has the power to define what "enemy combatant" means. The president can also delegate to anyone he chooses in the executive branch the right to define "enemy combatant" any way he or she wants and then seize Americans accordingly.

Even if you or I are American citizens, even if we turn out to be completely innocent of what he has accused us of doing, he has the power to have us seized as we are changing planes at Newark tomorrow, or have us taken with a knock on the door; ship you or me to a navy brig; and keep you or me in isolation, possibly for months, while awaiting trial. (Prolonged isolation, as psychiatrists know, triggers psychosis in otherwise mentally healthy prisoners. That is why Stalin's gulag had an isolation cell, like Guantánamo's, in every satellite prison. Camp 6, the newest, most brutal facility at Guantánamo, is all isolation cells.)

We US citizens will get a trial eventually - for now. But legal rights activists at the Center for Constitutional Rights say that the Bush administration is trying increasingly aggressively to find ways to get around giving even US citizens fair trials. "Enemy combatant" is a status offence - it is not even something you have to have done. "We have absolutely moved over into a preventive detention model - you look like you could do something bad, you might do something bad, so we're going to hold you," says a spokeswoman of the CCR.

Most Americans surely do not get this yet. No wonder: it is hard to believe, even though it is true. In every closing society, at a certain point there are some high-profile arrests - usually of opposition leaders, clergy and journalists. Then everything goes quiet. After those arrests, there are still newspapers, courts, TV and radio, and the facades of a civil society. There just isn't real dissent. There just isn't freedom. If you look at history, just before those arrests is where we are now.

10. Suspend the rule of law

The John Warner Defense Authorization Act of 2007 gave the president new powers over the national guard. This means that in a national emergency - which the president now has enhanced powers to declare - he can send Michigan's militia to enforce a state of emergency that he has declared in Oregon, over the objections of the state's governor and its citizens.

Even as Americans were focused on Britney Spears's meltdown and the question of who fathered Anna Nicole's baby, the New York Times editorialised about this shift: "A disturbing recent phenomenon in Washington is that laws that strike to the heart of American democracy have been passed in the dead of night ... Beyond actual insurrection, the president may now use military troops as a domestic police force in response to a natural disaster, a disease outbreak, terrorist attack or any 'other condition'."

Critics see this as a clear violation of the Posse Comitatus Act - which was meant to restrain the federal government from using the military for domestic law enforcement. The Democratic senator Patrick Leahy says the bill encourages a president to declare federal martial law. It also violates the very reason the founders set up our system of government as they did: having seen citizens bullied by a monarch's soldiers, the founders were terrified of exactly this kind of concentration of militias' power over American people in the hands of an oppressive executive or faction.

Of course, the United States is not vulnerable to the violent, total closing-down of the system that followed Mussolini's march on Rome or Hitler's roundup of political prisoners. Our democratic habits are too resilient, and our military and judiciary too independent, for any kind of scenario like that.

Rather, as other critics are noting, our experiment in democracy could be closed down by a process of erosion.

It is a mistake to think that early in a fascist shift you see the profile of barbed wire against the sky. In the early days, things look normal on the surface; peasants were celebrating harvest festivals in Calabria in 1922; people were shopping and going to the movies in Berlin in 1931. Early on, as WH Auden put it, the horror is always elsewhere - while someone is being tortured, children are skating, ships are sailing: "dogs go on with their doggy life ... How everything turns away/ Quite leisurely from the disaster."

As Americans turn away quite leisurely, keeping tuned to internet shopping and American Idol, the foundations of democracy are being fatally corroded. Something has changed profoundly that weakens us unprecedentedly: our democratic traditions, independent judiciary and free press do their work today in a context in which we are "at war" in a "long war" - a war without end, on a battlefield described as the globe, in a context that gives the president - without US citizens realising it yet - the power over US citizens of freedom or long solitary incarceration, on his say-so alone.

That means a hollowness has been expanding under the foundation of all these still- free-looking institutions - and this foundation can give way under certain kinds of pressure. To prevent such an outcome, we have to think about the "what ifs".

What if, in a year and a half, there is another attack - say, God forbid, a dirty bomb? The executive can declare a state of emergency. History shows that any leader, of any party, will be tempted to maintain emergency powers after the crisis has passed. With the gutting of traditional checks and balances, we are no less endangered by a President Hillary than by a President Giuliani - because any executive will be tempted to enforce his or her will through edict rather than the arduous, uncertain process of democratic negotiation and compromise.

What if the publisher of a major US newspaper were charged with treason or espionage, as a rightwing effort seemed to threaten Keller with last year? What if he or she got 10 years in jail? What would the newspapers look like the next day? Judging from history, they would not cease publishing; but they would suddenly be very polite.

Right now, only a handful of patriots are trying to hold back the tide of tyranny for the rest of us - staff at the Center for Constitutional Rights, who faced death threats for representing the detainees yet persisted all the way to the Supreme Court; activists at the American Civil Liberties Union; and prominent conservatives trying to roll back the corrosive new laws, under the banner of a new group called the American Freedom Agenda. This small, disparate collection of people needs everybody's help, including that of Europeans and others internationally who are willing to put pressure on the administration because they can see what a US unrestrained by real democracy at home can mean for the rest of the world.

We need to look at history and face the "what ifs". For if we keep going down this road, the "end of America" could come for each of us in a different way, at a different moment; each of us might have a different moment when we feel forced to look back and think: that is how it was before - and this is the way it is now.

"The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands ... is the definition of tyranny," wrote James Madison. We still have the choice to stop going down this road; we can stand our ground and fight for our nation, and take up the banner the founders asked us to carry.

· Naomi Wolf's The End of America: A Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot will be published by Chelsea Green in September"

Posted by: rufus | August 28, 2007 6:07 PM | Report abuse

"We all make mistakes," said Michael Vick. "Dogfighting is a terrible thing and I reject it ... I found Jesus and turned my life over to God. I think that's the right thing to do as of right now."

Gee, that didn't take long.

I didn't think the curtain on the "finding Jesus" act would rise until after Vick went to jail, but alas, it came on the same day he made his plea deal official.

It took Paris Hilton a few hours in the slammer before she met Jesus, and Vick does it even before lockup. Who knew?

He must have hired Hilton rep Elliot Mintz as his spokesman over the weekend.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | August 28, 2007 6:05 PM | Report abuse

As a life long New Yorker any New Yorker who thinks New York was a better place before Rudy is out of their minds. New York was a crime ridden dirty place that people were scared to visit. As a simple way of realizing this just look at how tourism has sky rocketed since Rudy took over. In 1991 New York had only 23 million visitors compared to over 44 million today. New York is a beautifull and safe place to visit today because of Rudy, actually the safest big city in America. When I was growing up during the 80's NY was an entirelly different place. You couldn't go to a broadway show in Times Square with out being offered cocain or hookers. .

Posted by: Chris | August 28, 2007 6:01 PM | Report abuse

And now back to our show.

Rufas can you cover it for a while, coward is over at kos getting more talking points.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 5:52 PM | Report abuse

44% of U.S. households reported income *decreases* over the past year

so the implication is that 56% saw increases. that means more went up than went down. I notice you don't say how much of an increase/decrease. an indication you are trying to Kruggman your results, as usual.

so potentially just under half went down by a dollar and just over a half went up by 200 dollars - horrifying, if you're a Lib.

Posted by: Lib math again | August 28, 2007 5:48 PM | Report abuse

oh, well, rufus, the Democartic designated punching bags, Rove and Gonzales are out, so that pretty much leaves the Clinton wing nuts of the DNC to blaming other Democrats for the state of the country. You are a readily available target, as is anyone else that disagrees with them. Let the feeding frenzy begin. After the dust settles, we can hope they are all safely settled back to watching soap operas and the adults get a chance to have their say.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 5:47 PM | Report abuse

anon - August 28, 2007 04:27 PM: Well, spin this. 44% of U.S. households reported income *decreases* over the past year. That sort of flies in the face of your songs of joy about the U.S. economy. Before blathering about Census stats, might I suggest you actually read them vs. taking some disorted talking point from FOX or the Post and running with it?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Its the rufas and coward show, brought to you by Kos.

stayed tuned for more ignorant, imbecelic nonsense after this message from bloggers without brains.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Another GOP hosebag -- nice rack on her.

Posted by: Nice link rufus | August 28, 2007 5:20 PM | Report abuse

The drooler who posts under the following:

Posted by: | August 28, 2007 05:00 PM

Posted by: Who's the ignorant coward? | August 28, 2007 5:19 PM | Report abuse

Some of the high level "grown-up" talk by the gop.

http://www.melaniemorganrocks.com/ContactMel.html


"Would you like some free Raiders stuff? Come up with a creative idea for the television visual behind protests that we are organizing against the Retreat-Defeat-and-Surrender crowd in San Francisco and Las Vegas pointing the finger at Commander-in-Chief Nancy Pelosi and her sidekick Harry Reid after vetoing funding for our troops.

The best ideas win T-shirts and caps!

Here are a couple of OUR ideas.:

A cheese-eating surrender monkey--life-size.

A woman dressed in a Burka waving a white surrender flag.

Paper mache hands with blood on them. "


And I'm the bad guy. Watch fox from 5-7 pacific time. And I'm the bad guy

Posted by: rufus | August 28, 2007 5:14 PM | Report abuse

zouk is not running for office. Neither is bush. what is a demented hate-monger to do?

"you are pathetic. no life. no job, no family, no interests, no military career. just all day typing out your hatred. "

this statement describes the ignorant coward precisely. and you thought he wasn't self aware. every once in a while even he stumbles onto a truth - like a stopped clock. but in his dementia, he projects it onto others.

for example - he gets up very early to get started :

"what is it with republican men? can't seem to keep that zipper zipped, all the while talking about 'family values.'

like lady macbeth, protesting too much.

Posted by: | August 28, 2007 07:53 AM

and staying late:

so, my guess is that zouk goes 'off duty' at 6. on at 12, off at 6. sounds like a work schedule, doesn't it?

how much do they pay you, zouk/'the dems'?

why aren't you in iraq instead on on here all day?

Posted by: | August 27, 2007 07:08 PM

Ranting about the elusive zouk the whole day long. 12 hours a day and more, ranting and raving about nothing. That is liberal efficiency for ya.

Seek professional help.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Uh, you know that guilty plea I entered? Can we just act like it didn't happen?

Posted by: Sen. Larry Craig, R-Uranus | August 28, 2007 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Unfortunately it took segregationist Governor Wallace to reveal the truth that "there's not a dime's worth of difference between" Republicans and Democrats. The Democrats willingly went along with the War in Iraq, suspension of Habeas Corpus, opening mail, banning books like "America Deceived' from Amazon, stealing private lands (Kelo decision), warrant-less wiretapping and refusing to investigate 9/11 properly. They are both guilty of treason.
Support Dr. Ron Paul and save this country.
Last link (before Google Books bends to gov't Will and drops the title):
http://www.iuniverse.com/bookstore/book_detail.asp?&isbn=0-595-38523-0

Posted by: Mike | August 28, 2007 4:52 PM | Report abuse

'clearly the objective facts state that NY state is beyond hope.'

no, that would be you. you are pathetic. no life. no job, no family, no interests, no military career. just all day typing out your hatred. a sad case indeed.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 4:50 PM | Report abuse

the difference zouk? my poll is real. yours is delusional. just like you. and in 2008 you're going to get your butt kicked just like in 2006.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Taking a poll in NY and presneting it like it is a slice of the population is just like a lying Lib.

they were stupid enough to elect her twice, what makes you think they know anything?

clearly the objective facts state that NY state is beyond hope.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 4:47 PM | Report abuse

'SEN. LARRY CRAIG ANNOUNCED HE IS NOT GAY, INSISTED HE DID NOTHING WRONG AT AIRPORT BATHROOM AND APOLOGIZED FOR DISTRESS CAUSED TO HIS WIFE AND FELLOW IDAHOANS'


"Craig would look down at his hands, 'fidget' with his fingers, and then look through the crack into my stall again," Karsnia wrote in documents accompanying the arrest report...

and then he pled guilty. these guys musst really think republican voters are stupid. but i guess they're right.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Which of NEW YORK'S PRESIDENTIAL HOPEFULS do you trust the most to instill massive corruption in the white house?
6% Giuliani
94% Clinton

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 4:45 PM | Report abuse

As you've probably heard by now, Rudy Giuliani's 9/11 performance was a Masterful Display of Churchillian Resolve, and as a result, Rudy the candidate should now be seen as a kind of cross between the Terminator and Dwight Eisenhower, who ran for President after his stint as commander of the allied forces in Europe.

Presumably, the people who would best know this are New Yorkers, who got the closest view of Rudy in the disaster's aftermath.

So when New Yorkers are asked who they trust more to handle terrorism, Rudy or Hillary, naturally they pick Rudy, right? Well, take a look at this new Rasmussen poll. It finds:

Which of NEW YORK'S PRESIDENTIAL HOPEFULS do you trust the most to handle the War on Terror?
36% Giuliani
44% Clinton

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 4:40 PM | Report abuse

BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- A curfew and weapons ban was in effect and Shiite pilgrims were evacuated from the southern Iraqi city of Karbala, where fighting has killed up to 50 people and wounded 247 others, the Iraqi Interior Ministry said Tuesday.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 4:36 PM | Report abuse

gee zouk -- everyone's gone but you... all alone here, drooling on your keyboard, everyone hates you.

to sane posters: come on before noon and after 6, when he's usually not here to ruin the board with his deranged hatred of half the country.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 4:35 PM | Report abuse

The fact my Republican friends is that this administraion will go down as one of the worst in history.Hillary will be president.Live with it. NO MORE CONSERVATIVES!

Posted by: Sandy | August 28, 2007 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Wages are down per household because the number of households has risen. Net result - we are all richer and there are more of us. you can't spin your way out of this one.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 4:27 PM | Report abuse

the next number to be trotted out by the 'everything is hunky dory' crowd is the unemployment rate. The unemployment rate is low. Yet, this is supposed to mean that wages will go up - because employers need to offer incentives to hire people away from their existing jobs. Yet, instead, we see that wages are down.

Posted by: bsimon | August 28, 2007 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Run for the hills, its facts about Dems.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 4:23 PM | Report abuse

"The nation's poverty rate dropped last year"

True.

Also true:

wages are down (again). Household total income is up, but more members of households are working - and they're working for less than they used to.

Another truth:

more people have no health insurance. Thus, when they do have health care needs, they go to expensive emergency rooms, where their costs are paid by the rest of us.

Posted by: bsimon | August 28, 2007 4:23 PM | Report abuse

We naturally have to explain to the Left that these missing people (in poverty) were not hauled off to concentration camps, to remove them from the American economy. Republicans did something much more diabolical to them. We made them richer.

...bad news for Libs...not enough victims to go around, they will have to draft some poor looking slobs, hide their volvo's and dress them badly...call it 'Rent a Slob'.....

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 3:50 PM | Report abuse

The nation's poverty rate dropped last year

Posted by: blame bush | August 28, 2007 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Let's review the Dem method:

1. Democrats in the House of Representatives moved to shut down the whole line of inquiry

2. held in silence by Speaker Thomas Foley (D-WA)

3. Following public outcry, the Democratic leaders of the House were forced

4. the Democrats issuing a report saying the matter was closed, (you remember the debate is settled one don't you?)

5. Republican charges were largely ignored until ...pleaded guilty

6. ...was convicted and sentenced ...

7. Clinton later pardoned ...

Posted by: follow the simple steps | August 28, 2007 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Just what does this guy have to offer? He is just another arrogant waanabe for all I can see.

Posted by: Eileen | August 28, 2007 3:46 PM | Report abuse

The scandal contributed to a perception of corruption and malfeasance and was a contributing factor to major changes in the House, in which 77 Representatives resigned or were ousted in the 1994 election. Four ex-Congressmen, a Delegate, and the former House sergeant-at-arms were convicted of wrongdoing as a result of the investigation that followed.[1] Former Rep. Carl C. Perkins (D-KY) pled guilty to various charges including a check kiting scheme involving several financial institutions including the House Bank. Former Rep. Carroll Hubbard, Jr. (D-KY) pled guilty to three felonies. Former Rep. Mary Rose Oakar (D-OH) was charged with seven felonies, but she ended up pleading guilty only to a misdemeanor campaign finance charge not related to the House Bank. The House Bank investigation also led to Delegate Walter E. Fauntroy (D-DC) pleading guilty to an unrelated charge of a making a false statement relating to a charitable contribution to his church. The former Sergeant At Arms, Jack Russ, pled guilty to three felonies.[2]

Let's have Hillary lead us back to the ancient glory.

but whatever you do, don't discuss her experience.

Posted by: the good old days in the 90s | August 28, 2007 3:43 PM | Report abuse

The Congressional Post Office Scandal is a phrase used to refer to the discovery of corruption among various Congressional Post Office employees and members of the United States House of Representatives, which was investigated from 1991 to 1995, climaxing in the conviction of House Ways and Means Committee chairman Dan Rostenkowski (D-IL).

Initially an investigation by the United States Capitol Police into a single embezzlement charge against a single employee, evidence rapidly led to the inclusion of several other employees, before top Democrats in the House of Representatives moved to shut down the whole line of inquiry, despite protests from Frank Karrigan, chief of the Capitol Police.

A new investigation was started by the United States Postal Service, which eventually submitted a report which was held in silence by Speaker Thomas Foley (D-WA) until media reports of embezzlement and drug laundering leaked out in 1992.

Following public outcry, the Democratic leaders of the House were forced to refer the matter to the Committee on House Administration, which started its own investigation.

That committee broke into two parts along party lines, the Democrats issuing a report saying the matter was closed, but the Republicans issuing a dissenting report including a number of unanswered questions and problems with the investigation.

The Republican charges were largely ignored until July of 1993, when the Congressional Postmaster Robert Rota pleaded guilty to three criminal charges, implicating Representatives Dan Rostenkowski (D-IL) and Joe Kolter (D-PA). They were accused of heading a conspiracy to launder Post Office money through stamps and postal vouchers.

Ultimately, Rostenkowski was convicted and sentenced to 18 months in prison, in 1995.

President Clinton later pardoned Rostenkowski as he left office in 2001.

Posted by: good example of how Dems operate | August 28, 2007 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Speaker of the U.S. House Jim Wright from Texas forced to resign after ethics committee investigation found dozens of violations of House rules, including alleged improper receipt of $145,000 in gifts by Wright's wife from a Fort Worth developer and large profits from "sale" of Wright's speeches (1989)
Anthony Lee Coelho of California resigns from U.S. House for unethical finance practices including "junk bond" deal (1989)
Alcee Hastings, federal district court judge impeached (1989) and convicted of soliciting a bribe; subsequently elected (1992) to U.S. House

Put the Dems in charge - this is what you got last time

Posted by: the party of slime | August 28, 2007 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Travelgate (1993)

Zoe Baird's nomination as Attorney General and Kimba Wood's subsequent near-nomination were derailed by past employment of illegal aliens as nannies. (1993)

Dan Rostenkowski and other Democratic Members of Congress in the Congressional Post Office Scandal (1991 - 1995)

The evident suicide (1993) of White House lawyer Vince Foster, together with accusations that documents from Foster's office relating to an investigation had disappeared mysteriously, fueled scandalous speculations, including the widely publicized suggestion (dismissed by investigators) that Foster's death had not been suicide.

White House Coffees and Lincoln Bedroom sales -- political donations linked to access to President Clinton, including the apparent sale of "coffees" with him, and what amounted to the renting out of the Lincoln Bedroom.

Commerce Secretary Ron Brown investigated (1995)


The 1996 United States campaign finance controversy, also known as Chinagate, refers to alleged efforts by the People's Republic of China (PRC) to influence domestic United States politics prior to and during the Clinton Administration as well as the fundraising practices of the administration itself.

Americorps head Eli Segal investigated (1996)

Wes Cooley (1996)

Filegate -- Misuse of FBI resources by White House Security Chief under President Bill Clinton, allegedly to compile an enemies list (1996); investigation found insufficient evidence of criminal wrongdoing

Secretary of Agriculture Michael Espy forced to resign from office despite ultimate acquittal on criminal corruption charges (1998)

Labor Secretary Alexis Herman investigated (1998) in connection with alleged illegal fundraising and other financial improprieties, ultimately cleared (2001)

Bruce Babbitt, Interior Secretary, independent probe (1998-2000) of alleged lying to Congress concerning influence of money in 1995 American Indian tribe casino decision finds no criminally prosecutable perjury by Babbitt

Vice-President Al Gore (1998) allegations of improper fundraising and "no controlling legal authority" defense
Whitewater scandal (1994-2000)No criminal charges were brought against the Clintons as there was insufficient evidence that either of them had engaged in criminal wrongdoing

Teamstergate Ron Carey's and Bill Clinton's 1996 campaigns for the Presidency of the union and the United States, respectively, swapped Teamsters' Union general treasury funds into Clinton's campaign, for Clinton Campaign funds into Ron Carey's campaign warchest. The Teamsters' political director was jailed. No Clinton officials were charged. Carey's re-election was invalidated; James Hoffa, Jr. was elected when Teamsters election was rerun.

Henry Cisneros resigns as Housing Secretary and, after lengthy probe that began in 1995, pleads guilty (1999) to lying to the FBI about money he paid former mistress Linda Medlar a.k.a. Linda Jones; later pardoned by President Clinton in 2001 (Possibly reclassify or cross-reference to Sex scandal)

Pardongate (1999 - 2001) -- Bill Clinton appeared to write out pardons, during his lame duck tenure, in response to massive contributions linked to the pardoned. This included a scandal which has become traditional for departing presidents; the sudden flurry of pardons during the final month in office, which would probably not have been deemed tolerable at any other time

Let's talk about Hillary's record and experience.

Posted by: too easy | August 28, 2007 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Bribe me Murtha
Swimmer Ted Kennedy
Leaky Leahy
Impeached Hastings
cold cash Jefferson
Free loan Moran
fix my ticket Frank
Line my pockets clinton
Land deal Reid
Matta Harri Rockefeller
no controlling legal authority gore
beam me up trafficant
bribe me torch
sandy burgler
friends of abramoff: clyburn, Reid and thompson
killer condit and on and on

Maybe the list of honest Democrats would be more manageable


Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Shredder | August 28, 2007 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Rudy is tied to the NAFTA super highway. He is a globalist. Google the following phrase "Rudy Giuliani law firm trans Texas corridor " . He is a globalist like all the candidates. They don't want american sovereignty.

Posted by: Shredder | August 28, 2007 3:14 PM | Report abuse

The AP has reported that Reid profited from a land deal which he hid from the Senate (in violation of Senate ethics rules) and used his influence to obtain federal land swaps and rezoning to his personal benefit. Of course, in the Reid World, he did nothing wrong

As more details of Harry's ties to lobbyist Jack Abramoff become visible, the Harry's hypocrisy on this scandal becomes even more evident. No wonder the DNC says that Harry and his family are the symbol of what is wrong in Washington.

The insincerity of Harry Reid's calls for reform is established by his own words and actions. Although he received, and refuses to return, over $68,000 in Abramoff affiliated funds, Reid's recent comments and blatant misuse of taxpayer funds demonstrate that he is the very sort of corrupt politician that needs to be removed from Washington.

After a year as the minority leader, Harry has led his party no where. No is actually the operative word - democrats, under Harry's 'leadership' have become the party of 'no it alls." No to progress in Iraq, no to progress at home, not to anything proposed by President Bush. Pavlov's dogs salivated when a bell was rung; Harry and his Harpies just say no whenever President Bush speaks or when there is good news for America. Pretending to have an agenda when all one does is obstruct is the ultimate hypocrisy.

Harry wants energy independence, without drilling for oil or building new refineries. While harping on foreign energy dependence, Harry and his Harpies continue to block drilling in ANWR.

Senator Reid accepts free boxing tickets as part of 'doing his job'; misleads public about Senate ethics rules and establishes his utter hypocrisy on ethics and corruption

In the 2002 elections, Reid Protégé Dario Herrera ran for Congress and Reid Protégé Erin Kenny ran for Lieutenant Governor. Since the election, Herrera has been indicted and Kenny has pled guilty to charges stemming from a federal political corruption probe. We have all heard Harry's outrage over the results of the Fitzgerald investigation. Read what Harry said about his Protégé's.

The administration has expressed a consistent approach to the war in Iraq since the end of major combat orperations. On many occasions, Harry and his Harpies have issued statements calling for a similar approach. They condemn or support the plan for victory in Iraq based solely on their evaluation of potential political advantage. One democrat leader did not know the meaning of the word "is"; Harry and his Harpies do not seem to know the meaning of the word "plan."


Posted by: the grandaddy | August 28, 2007 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif) is leading the charge against the "culture of corruption" among the Republicans. Here's another Google search to run. Try D'Alesandro + corruption + Baltimore. You will get just 194 hits. Why D'Alesandro?

Well, Nancy Pelosi grew up as Nancy D'Alesandro. She was the daughter of one Baltimore Mayor, Tommy D'Alesandro Sr, and the sister of another, Tommy III. Both Tommys were crooked as a dog's hind leg, but only one ever was charged with anything.

Tommy III was charged with rape as a young man, and charged with bribery as Mayor (along with a City Councilman, Mimi DiPietro). In both cases the charges were dropped when the principal witnesses made themselves scarce. In the bribery matter, the witness surfaced in a Las Vegas hotel connected to the mob, the day after the charges were dropped.

Posted by: family way of operating | August 28, 2007 2:55 PM | Report abuse

"notice on the corruption list all the Rs are gone while the Ds are in leadership and getting more powerful"

Except for, uh, Jefferson & Ney. And Hastings isn't gaining in power.

And then there's the Repubs that aren't mentioned, like T Stevens (R-AK) and the Rep from that state.

No party has a monopoly on corruption...

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:51 PM | Report abuse

With RINO Rudy being Pro Gay, Anti-Gun, and Pro-Abortion I give him Zero chance of taking Florida. Fred Thompson will waltz away with the delegates.

Posted by: ET | August 28, 2007 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Dem. TX.Congressman solomon Ortiz was caught with owning a sub standard service security company on the Docks in Corpus Chrissti,Texas. His company had government contracts for securtity on shipping docks where military equipment was shipped overseas. He used his office to get the contract and then his company was fired for giving poor service and he had to sell out

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:44 PM | Report abuse

"How much more would energy cost if we moved the 40-60 million transplants to sun belt states back to northern climates and had to heat them during winters?"

Instead, they live where they run the A/C 12 months of the year.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | August 28, 2007 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Anonymous moron posting at 2:38: Put down the crack pipe. Step away from the crack pipe.

Posted by: LOL President Giuliani | August 28, 2007 2:41 PM | Report abuse

notice on the corruption list all the Rs are gone while the Ds are in leadership and getting more powerful

that is the difference in the parties.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Are all republicans hateful, moronic ranters, or just the ones who come on here?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:41 PM | Report abuse

I love how the "volunteer phone script" ignores the only genuine conservative in the race Dr. Ron Paul and lumps in with "one of the other candidates". They don't dare mention his name lest they skew the results they are seeking in their push poll.

Posted by: Jim | August 28, 2007 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Here's the list of the Judicial Watch Most Wanted Corrupt Politicians: (2006)

Jack Abramoff, Former Lobbyist
Abramoff is at the center of a massive public corruption investigation by the Department of Justice

Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY)
In January 2006, Hillary Clinton's fundraising operation was fined $35,000 by the Federal Election Commission for failing to accurately report more than $700,000 in contributions to Clinton's Senate 2000 campaign.

Former Representative Randy "Duke" Cunningham (R-CA)
In November 2005, Cunningham pleaded guilty to federal charges of conspiracy to commit bribery, mail fraud, wire fraud, and tax evasion.

Former Representative Tom Delay (R-TX)
Tom DeLay, who was forced to step down from his position as House Majority Leader and then resign from Congress, decided in 2006 not to run for re-election.

Former Representative Mark Foley (R-FL)
Foley left the House in disgrace after news broke that he had been sending predatory homosexual emails to a House page.

Representative Denny Hastert (R-IL)
In addition to mishandling the Foley scandal, outgoing House Speaker Dennis Hastert allowed House ethics process to ground to a halt on his watch.

Representative Alcee Hastings (D-FL)
Hastings is one of only six federal judges to be removed from office through impeachment and has accumulated staggering liabilities ranging from $2,130,006 to $7,350,000.

Representative William "Dollar Bill" Jefferson (D-LA)
Jefferson is alleged to have accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes to help broker high-tech business deals in Nigeria.

Former Representative Bob Ney (R-OH)
Ohio Republican Congressman Bob Ney resigned in early November 2006, three weeks after pleading guilty for accepting bribes from an Indian casino in exchange for legislative favors.

Senator Harry Reid (D-NV)
Senator Reid came under fire in 2006 for failing to properly report to Congress a $700,000 land deal.

I think she can make it to the top this year.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Thank your 'parents and grandparents' for destroying some of the most important wetlands in the country so that a bunch of transplants from Brooklyn and Philly can own a four-bedroom house with a pool.
No wonder you support Rudy.

Yes, yes, you liberal/socialist/progressives prefer high population density where 30-story public housing units make up the skylines of a handful of cities, while the rest of the land remains "pristine and unspoiled", because you have no regard for the individualism that single-family homes allow for.

Come to think of it, your development ideas are right in line with Lenin and Stalin who knew they could more easily control the masses by centralizing them via forcibly removing them from their rural homes to such wonderful accommodations.

Florida, with the 4th most delegates to conventions and in the Electoral College will play a pivotal role in the election of President Giuliani. I am proud of my family's contribution to our nation, and to our state that has allowed millions to live an American dream.

Not to mention the increased entertainment value of year-round boating, fishing, sports tens of millions now enjoy, or who are able to enjoy our mild winters. How much more would energy cost if we moved the 40-60 million transplants to sun belt states back to northern climates and had to heat them during winters? And how putrid an existence it would be to force everyone to live in high-rises while our countrysides were off-limits to all development and recreation! Liberal/socialist/progressives always wanting their vision of paradise forced on everyone else!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:38 PM | Report abuse

I have no life. All I can doi is type insults about Democrats all day... I am so full of hate. Help! I wish I wasn't too fat and cowardly to join the military.

Posted by: kingofzouk | August 28, 2007 2:33 PM | Report abuse

golgi - We are Libs, we don't do issues - only insults, personalities and smear. we can't win on issues, no one wants socialism. we have to lie, cheat and steal. that is why we like hillary so much, she understands. she even knows how weak we are and admits a terror attack is bad for Dems. It would just bring up all that weakness again and feckless foreign policy and inaction.

We simply can't afford to discuss her "experience" since most of it is a felony. we will pretend we don't have a candidate instead. all the Libs who never pay attention anyway won't mind - they have no mind.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Hillary vs. Giuilani would be a disaster for America. One doesn't get anywhere in noo yawk politics without first pledging undying, preeminent fealty to zionist Israel...FACT!

Posted by: Geezer | August 28, 2007 2:29 PM | Report abuse

'Last week we reported on a new ad that the Louisiana Democratic Party is running against GOP Congressman Bobby Jindal, who is running for governor this Fall. The ad quotes Jindal's writing in a right-wing Catholic journal in the mid-90's, soon after his conversion to Catholicism from Hinduism, where he made disparaging remarks against Protestants.

Now Jindal is hitting back at the ad -- by threatening legal action against stations that air it.'

iF R'S CAN'T WIN, THEY JUST TRY TO CENSOR.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Rudy Giuliani, the only former U.S. Attorney running for President, still hasn't released any statement on the Gonzo resignation. But it turns out he did say something about it last night, offering some kind words for the disgraced Attorney General at a fundraiser in Detroit:

"I think Judge Gonzales has given service with his contribution both at the White House and as attorney general," the former New York mayor and federal prosecutor said outside the Fox Theatre. "He made his choice. I know he's lived through a lot of fire in many areas."
'Giuliani also made sure to name-drop one of Gonzales' prospective replacements, Michael Chertoff, a former Justice Department colleague of Rudy's. "He said he would make any suggestions confidentially, not in public, then pointed out that one of those whose name has come up is Chertoff, now U.S. secretary of Homeland Security," the Associated Press reports.

Needless to say, Rudy didn't mention that Chertoff was widely criticize'd for presiding over FEMA's disastrous response to Katrina.'

guiliani just like bush. no difference whatsoever.

Posted by: rudy praises gonzo | August 28, 2007 2:26 PM | Report abuse

We are all zouk now!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Dunno, 2:17, the 2:09 post doesn't sound like it was written by the Fix participant that you mentioned. It's also a well-thought-out argument -- not mutually exclusive :) -- and it seems to me that Hillary Clinton isn't a silly thing to think about, since it's the primary season. But maybe I just think it isn't silly to dread Hillary because I dread her myself. That would be a hard one to prove one way or the other!

Posted by: Golgi | August 28, 2007 2:24 PM | Report abuse

'Corruption is a way of life in the new Democrats '

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:24 PM | Report abuse

One of the most often repeated liberal laments about American foreign policy under President George W. Bush is that America is more hated around the world than ever. As if a country being loved is evidence of its moral virtue.

People don't love countries except during exceptional and brief moments in history -- such as when Germans loved America for the Berlin airlift or the French loved us right after we liberated their country from the Nazis.

The aim of the United States of America should not be to be loved. As nice as that would be, the one superpower on earth is never going to be loved -- though I would bet a large sum of money that if China or Russia or any other country became the reigning superpower, people the world over would yearn for the good old days when America was the superpower.

America would presumably be more loved if it abandoned Israel or if it abandoned Iraq. Each case would be morally wrong, but, hey, we'd be loved. Liberals believed we would have been more loved if we had destroyed our nuclear arsenal during the Cold War. Or if we had not pressured West Germany into accepting Pershing missiles.

Of course, in all these cases, if America had sought love, evil would have prevailed. But at least we'd be loved. What else really matters?


Posted by: dennis | August 28, 2007 2:23 PM | Report abuse

'Corruption is a way of life in the new Iraq. Transparency International, an anti-corruption watchdog, labeled the country the second-most-corrupt business environment on the planet in 2005. Just yesterday, McClatchy reported that any Iraqi doing business in Anbar Province -- including Iraqi contractors with the U.S. -- pays an "insurgent tax" to militant groups who partially finance their fight against the U.S. through shakedowns. All that raises doubt about how much good a new anti-corruption effort can accomplish at this point.'

this is what republicans want to do to do this country, too..

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:23 PM | Report abuse

But by far the most alarming charges involve the laxity of controls over the weapons distributed to Iraqi security forces. After government reports indicated serious problems with accounting for the weapons -- raising the possibility that they've gone to the black market and are being used to attack U.S. forces -- the Pentagon's inspector general, Lieutenant General Claude "Mick" Kicklighter, launched an investigation. He's about to leave for an "indefinite" period in Iraq at the helm of an 18-investigator team. That inquiry comes at the behest of Sen. John Warner (R-VA), the former chairman of the Armed Services Committee, and it's most likely only the first salvo of a broader Pentagon anti-corruption effort.

Posted by: guns for the enemy | August 28, 2007 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Even outside of Selph's command, the paper reports, there are indications of how corruption nibbled around the edges of a variety of contracts. Iraqis, U.S. contractors, foreign contractors, U.S. military officials, and U.S. civilian workers are under investigation for everything from "conspiracy, bribery, product substitution and bid-rigging or double-billing involving large dollar amounts or more senior contracting officials."

Posted by: iraq the biggest scam in history | August 28, 2007 2:21 PM | Report abuse

I have wanted to understand people who hold leftist positions. Many people who hold them are personally decent, some very much so -- yet they hold positions that I believe increase cruelty (e.g., advocating withdrawal from Iraq); increase criminality (e.g., more lenient attitudes toward punishing criminals); hasten the decline of Western society (e.g., pushing multiculturalism); and undermine liberty (e.g., expanding government, passing more and more laws, taking away ever larger percentages of citizens' money).

They also panic easily (e.g., heterosexual AIDS in America, carbon dioxide emissions leading to global catastrophe); and the further left one goes, the more morally confused they are (e.g., the inability to label the Soviet Union an "evil empire"; the exaggeration of America's flaws -- it is sexist, imperialist, racist, homophobic -- and the undervaluing of its virtues).

Why is this? Why do so many good people hold bad positions

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:20 PM | Report abuse

You're the joke, zouk. You've become the village idiot around here, everyone knows it but you. Why do you come here when everyone reviles you?

Posted by: drindl | August 28, 2007 2:19 PM | Report abuse

'What is shocking is that Hillary Clinton seems intent on acting as if none of this history exists. '

What is shocking, zouk, is that a grown man has nothing better to do with his life than sit starting at a screen obssessing about Hillary Clinton for 6 hours a day.

You are a pathetic loser.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:17 PM | Report abuse

drindl...you're talking about nutcases the R's are running...LOL. You sir are a joke. As soon as you said you liked the Reverand Al Gore and that screeching idiot Dean, the rest of your post was useless.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Rumors were put out that the staff was corrupt and mismanaging funds. The FBI was strong armed into an investigation and the head of the travel office, Billy Dale, was even indicted. When journalists and Congress looked into the matter the White House offered a host of contradictory reasons; then stonewalled any investigations; and even altered and destroyed documents to prevent the truth from coming out.

Eventually at least a partial understanding was reached. The First Lady was involved from the very beginning, she had lied about that involvement, and there was no evidence of wrongdoing on the part of the travel office staff. It was all a botched attempt to replace civil servants with Clinton loyalists.

As the above examples make clear, what we already know about her time in the White House doesn't paint a very flattering picture. Her refusal to release the rest of the documents continues to beg the question: what is she hiding?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:12 PM | Report abuse

You see, when her husband fires all the attorneys and replaces them with loyal Democrats it was simply the "prerogatives of the office." But when Bush does it, it is a dangerous attempt to "shift the balance of power in favor of the executive branch" and "a threat to the rule of law."

During this controversy many also accused Bush of smearing upstanding civil servants in order to replace them with partisan ideologues. Well, Hillary has some experience with this as well.

Remember "Travelgate?" Longtime friend and campaign contributor Harry Thomason had been lobbying the Clinton's to get rid of the White House travel office and give the contract to his travel company. Sure enough, four months into the first term the travel office staff was fired.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Because Hillary is counting on the public's desire not to rehash the scandals of the Clinton White House, but this history shines a spotlight on the very history she would like to claim as "experience."

She should not be allowed to have it both ways. Either her time in the White House is the critical experience that differentiates her from her competitors and thus should be subject to the scrutiny it deserves. Or she is simply just another undistinguished Senator running for the White House.

Her decision to not release the documents related to her time in the White House only reinforces this hypocrisy. If she is intent on attacking the president for his supposed secrecy, cronyism, and over-reaching executive authority, then it is only fair that the voters have access to the documents necessary to judge her time in the White House.

What is shocking is that Hillary Clinton seems intent on acting as if none of this history exists. She is understandably working hard to soften her image and appear as a charming and likable candidate.

But in an effort to gain support with the angry liberal base of her party, she has opened herself up to charges of blatant hypocrisy. The very tendencies she claims the Bush administration represents - secrecy, cronyism, heavy-handed suppression of dissent, over reliance on loyalty, etc. - litter her history and define her personality.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I see. Yeah, I kind of have that. I really liked Dean and Gore, Hillary is kind of like Kerry to me -- like I'll vote for her if I have to, to avoid electing any of the nutcases the R's are running, but I'mm not thrilled.

I think she'd be perfectly competent -- just not terribly inspring. But I don't think she would drag us into unncessary wars just to please the corporate sector either.

Posted by: drindl | August 28, 2007 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Hi Loudonian, Yes, I get what you are saying. I just have a bad feeling about the idea. It's hard to put my finger on why. If they did it in a very, very principled way it might be safe. I'm just worried it wouldn't work out as well in practice as it would seem to in theory.

Posted by: Golgi | August 28, 2007 2:07 PM | Report abuse

I would really like to know why! the press, television, etc are trying to ignore the best candidate for President. RON PAUL, Rep. from Texas! I have been a registered Dem. for years, I really don't care what party wins, I care about the person that will lead this country to freedom, peace, and happiness for the next 4 or 8 years. We need someone who isn't afraid to speek up and do what this Country needs. Get rid of the IRS, Federal Reserve Bank, Personal Income Tax, get our policy for overseas committments back on track. Get our Soldiers Home now, and stop trying to be the Police Chief of the World! Mind our own business and stay out of others, Take care of the people of the US not other countries.
Check out Ron Pauls Web site and see if you don't agree He is the one to do all this! (www.ronpaul2008.com/)
WE THE PEOPLE, NEED HIS HELP

Posted by: Gary Wood | August 28, 2007 2:07 PM | Report abuse

A lot of rescuers are very sick because of Rudy, that's what it shows, 'blowmaster' -- goood name for you. you blow.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Hey drindl, Just to clarify, by a "vacuum of enthusiasm" I meant no strong feelings one way or another. So if 88% of the population is saying "we're going the wrong way" that wouldn't be a vacuum. A vacuum would have been if 88% said "I don't know" or "it doesn't matter." I didn't express my meaning very clearly.

Posted by: Golgi | August 28, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

I agree with bsimon--that would be a good thing. I don't always agree with ?Bloomberg and Schartzie but at least they are not insane. The republican party as it exists now is going to end up killing all of us.

Posted by: Jane. | August 28, 2007 2:03 PM | Report abuse

QUOTE:
Thanks, Kevin. Yup, I'm from NYC too and I can't even count how many lawsuits are pending from rescueers injured by Rudy's lying about the air quality at Ground Zero and not providing proper safety equipment. Oh sure, those folks love him.

This was after failing to provide adequate radios, after knowing they were defective for years. But he gave tax cuts to the rich folks instead.


On what planet is a pending lawsuit proof of anything????? Oh, and BTW, it's six years later and they still don't have the radios that allegedly would have worked in the rubble of the towers. What up?

Posted by: Blowmaster 9000 Jesus | August 28, 2007 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Blah blah blah...Nutjob Ron Paul voters to the right, wacko Hillary voters to the left.

Posted by: Mark Devlin | August 28, 2007 2:02 PM | Report abuse

"the perfect situation for Schwarzenegger and Bloomberg to craft a new Republican Party of their own design."

You mean a Republican Party that is fiscally conservative yet socially moderate/liberal? One that might attract millions of disenchanted voters? Shudder.

Posted by: Loudounian | August 28, 2007 2:00 PM | Report abuse

You're right about that Golgi. Nobody hates the first amendment like Rudy, and he doesn't have much use for the rest of them eithr, including the Second.

Won't the yokels who vote for him be surprised when he cracks down on illegal guns and dealers -- one of the few things he did New Yorkers actuallly approved of.

I don't like Hillary much either, but she couldn't possibly create a 'vacuum of enthusiam' as big as we have now, with something like 88% of the popilation saying we're 'going in the wrong direction.

Posted by: drindl | August 28, 2007 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Golgi
"Well, with... Hillary in the Oval Office, there would be a vacuum of enthusiasm in the country... the perfect situation for Schwarzenegger and Bloomberg to craft a new Republican Party of their own design."

That wouldn't be the worst thing in the world. Come to think of it, if it would purge the Repubs of the 'kill em all' cons and the bedroom-peering puritans, I could almost be talked into voting for Hillary.

Posted by: bsimon | August 28, 2007 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Don't forget, with eiother of them, you get crooks, too! As for Gulianni and a police state, Hillary Clinton is one of those people who always thinks she is right and everyone who disagrees with her is part of some vast right wing conspiracy. In the past, she has demonstrrated herself all too willing to punish those in opposition, using illegal and extra-legal means. She would make Gulianni look downright liberal.

Posted by: Golgi Misses one point | August 28, 2007 1:59 PM | Report abuse

'Rudy actually beats Hillary, and is the only Republican candidate who's led her in more of the polls than not, and who ties or is even close to the rest of the Dem field.'

Not according to any poll I've seen. You might be more credible if you provided a link.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 1:54 PM | Report abuse

My worst fear is a Clinton-Giuliani race. I wouldn't know who to vote for because either one would be a disaster. I would still go to the polls to vote downticket, but might have to vote None of the Above for the president.

Why am I, a Dem/Independent, suggesting that Clinton would be a disaster? Well, with triangulating, passionless Hillary in the Oval Office, there would be a vacuum of enthusiasm in the country... the perfect situation for Schwarzenegger and Bloomberg to craft a new Republican Party of their own design. The good intentions of Sch./Bl. might well pave the road to hell. They are so smart they may cut themselves along with all the rest of us.

It is even easier to see why Giuliani would be a disaster. He would turn America into a police state.

Posted by: Golgi | August 28, 2007 1:51 PM | Report abuse

bsimon/AndyR: Dade County is a bit of Brooklyn that broke off of New York State decades ago and drifted down to Florida. To many of those snowbirds (nearly all R's since the onset of age-related mental decline) Guiliani's actual performance is irrelevant. They left the Northeast well before he became Mayor. They would vote for him out of a sense of (as usual) misplaced loyalty to the area they grew up in.

And CC, I suspect that "former Yankees" does actually mean pinstripers, retired ones who happen to be living in FL.

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | August 28, 2007 1:47 PM | Report abuse

His focus on Florida didn't stop him from initially pulling out of the debate scheduled in Florida in September. The debate was scheduled to take place in St. Petersburg, the 2nd largest city in the most important media market in the state (roughly half of the state's swing precincts are within it's media market - though Orlando will eventually eclipse Tampa Bay as the primary battleground).

campaignmanager.blogspot.com

Posted by: Floridian | August 28, 2007 1:45 PM | Report abuse

The family gift shop is modestly successful and we are frugal. We are Democrats. We think it is good to give.

"By and large" is actually a nautical term from sailing days. You should look that up. You will become fascinated. You will become frugal. You will become Democrats. You will think it is good to give.

Posted by: wpaw | August 28, 2007 1:34 PM | Report abuse

'first responders, volunteer firefighters'

Thanks, Kevin. Yup, I'm from NYC too and I can't even count how many lawsuits are pending from rescueers injured by Rudy's lying about the air quality at Ground Zero and not providing proper safety equipment. Oh sure, those folks love him.

This was after failing to provide adequate radios, after knowing they were defective for years. But he gave tax cuts to the rich folks instead.

So if you want another snarling warmonger determined to sell out your country EXACTLY LIKE BUSH-- vote for Rudy. He's just exactly the same, only maybe worse.

Posted by: Marta | August 28, 2007 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Native Floridian,
Thank your 'parents and grandparents' for destroying some of the most important wetlands in the country so that a bunch of transplants from Brooklyn and Philly can own a four-bedroom house with a pool.
No wonder you support Rudy.

Posted by: Andy R | August 28, 2007 1:32 PM | Report abuse

please drop this cr@p, do some searches online, it's a load of bull

Posted by: oh look the boring project AGAIN | August 28, 2007 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Being a New Yorker, Clinton is a joke. Her only interest is in herself. I have to laugh when her power point mentions "..." These groups will not support her. She just used to further her own political ambition as the NYT mentions:

"...blah,blah,blah, Hillary is brilliant, Hillary, Hillary, Bill, Bill, Bill, Paris Hilton, ."

So if you want to cast your vote for Clinton, go ahead, you will get the tyranny, and further erosion of liberty you deserve.

I'm voting for [my plastic bathtube toy], the only true [liberal/feminist] in the [DNC/world]!

Posted by: Hillary In NYC | August 28, 2007 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Reading these comments from people who "suspect" Rudy won't play well here except among transplanted Yankees is ignorance on display. I was born and raised here. My parents and grandparents helped drain the swamps and build the cities the Yankees moved to. Rudy plays just fine here and in the rest of Dixie.

One post claims a poll shows Rudy losing to Hillary by 5 in this state, 20 in NY and 20 in Arkansas. I read all the polls, broken down by state. The numbers cited were pulled out of someone's rear-end. Rudy actually beats Hillary, and is the only Republican candidate who's led her in more of the polls than not, and who ties or is even close to the rest of the Dem field.

So, Chris got his hands on volunteer materials in Florida. Big whoop. If volunteer manuals are newsworthy these days, I've got a warehouse full from campaigns past and present. Nothing sensitive about them. The only way this would have been a story is if Rudy's campaign, or any serious presidential campaign didn't have stuff floating around out there yet.

Posted by: Native Floridian | August 28, 2007 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Being a New Yorker, Rudy is a joke. His only interest is in himself. I have to laugh when his power point mentions "first responders, volunteer firefighters..." These groups will not support Rudy. He just used 9/11 to further his own political ambition as the NYT mentions:

"... (he) was there (Ground Zero) for a total of 29 hours in those three months, often for short periods or to visit locations adjacent to the rubble. In that same period, many rescue and recovery workers put in daily 12-hour shifts... The 29 hours Mr. Giuliani spent at ground zero involved 41 appearances, mostly to give tours to other officials and foreign dignitaries. (He received an honorary knighthood from the Queen of England) Many entries include meetings away from the site before the tour. For instance, the schedule included 30 minutes on Nov. 15, 2001, for President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia, but Mr. Putin's tour of ground zero was widely reported to have lasted 13 minutes."

So if you want to cast your vote for Rudy, go ahead, you will get the tyranny, and further erosion of liberty you deserve.

I'm voting for Ron Paul, the only true conservative in the GOP!

Posted by: Kevin in NYC | August 28, 2007 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Andy R writes
"I see your point but remember a lot of those same New Yorker types remember Guiliani when he was Mayor. That isn't neccesarely a good thing if you hear they way people from NYC tell it."

I don't disagree. I was reading something last night about Giuliani's claim of turning a deficit into a surplus in NYC, but he fails to mention that he also turned that surplus back into a deficit. More info at ericblackink.com. The author is a former journalist from the Minneapolis paper, who took a buyout this year to pursue online journalism / punditry.

Posted by: bsimon | August 28, 2007 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Dipwad.

Posted by: Still having trouble staying on topic, eh zouk? | August 28, 2007 1:10 PM | Report abuse

As the presidential debates heat up and tensions increase, the candidates need to be reminded of the critical issues that still trouble our society today. Issue such as global poverty needs to be address by our candidates to each other and to the general public. As one of the nations that has pledge to fulfill the goals of Millennium Development Project, whose goal is the elimination of world hunger and poverty, the Bush Administration has not shown any substantial action to bring this fundamental problem to a stop. According to the Borgen Project, dedicated to fighting and ending Poverty around the world, only $19 billion dollars are needed annually to stop world wide poverty, hunger and malnutrition. However, more than $340 billion dollars has been poured into this "war on terror." And each year, our country has a military budge of $522 billion dollars. It's time for a new leader who will be addressing an issue that affects 1.2 billion people everyday worldwide.

Posted by: Mstessyrue | August 28, 2007 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Why isn't the poll asking about Romney? It sounds like Guliani is worried about him so he doesn't want to even bring his name up. Romney is beating McCain in the polls but his name is left out...? Sounds like a pretty twisted polling call.

Posted by: Romney | August 28, 2007 1:07 PM | Report abuse

It's by "and" large. Check the first sentence of the second paragraph, Einstein. The first rule of journalism - get the words right. Poof! There goes your credibility.

Posted by: matt mcguinness | August 28, 2007 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Florida deserves to be rendered into irrelevance, and I believe the RNC will, like the DNC, do the right thing and strip Florida and Michigan of their delegates in order to bring some sanity to the process.

Posted by: Kevin Steimel | August 28, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB118826947048110677.html?mod=hpp_us_whats_news

Bob: ..a lesson in campaign fraud, from someone even worse than Bush.

"One of the biggest sources of political donations to Hillary Rodham Clinton is a tiny, lime-green bungalow that lies under the flight path from San Francisco International Airport.

Six members of the Paw family, each listing the house at 41 Shelbourne Ave. as their residence, have donated a combined $45,000 to the Democratic senator from New York since 2005, for her presidential campaign, her Senate re-election last year and her political action committee. In all, the six Paws have donated a total of $200,000 to Democratic candidates since 2005, election records show...It isn't obvious how the Paw family is able to afford such political largess. Records show they own a gift shop and live in a 1,280-square-foot house that they recently refinanced for $270,000. William Paw, the 64-year-old head of the household, is a mail carrier with the U.S. Postal Service who earns about $49,000 a year"

Posted by: Anonymous | August 28, 2007 12:57 PM | Report abuse

My guess is that all the campaigns have local yokels that gin up similar slideshows, to try to round up volunteers and donations.

Can Rudy get the nom if he loses all three previous contests? Probably depends on how bad he loses. If he gets killed (4th place or worse) in Iowa and NH, then no probably not. I would think that 2nd or 3rd place is a strong enough showing that he would still have credibility within the Fla GOP that he's the 'electable solution' against the HRC machine.

Posted by: JD | August 28, 2007 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Recent polls show Rudy losing to Hillary in NY by over 20 points. He's losing in FL by 5. He's losing to Hillary in Arkansas by almost 20.

The conventional wisdom says that Rudy will have a tough time winning the nomination, because the voters are more conservative but will do well in the general. The polls cited in Chris's column and the ones above say the opposite.

Posted by: Bob | August 28, 2007 12:43 PM | Report abuse

bsimon: "Samething in Mass, the Bostoners & Berksherites are wholly different breeds."

hey b, that would be Bostonians 8>P

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | August 28, 2007 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Bsimon,
I see your point but remember a lot of those same New Yorker types remember Guiliani when he was Mayor. That isn't neccesarely a good thing if you hear they way people from NYC tell it.

Posted by: Andy R | August 28, 2007 12:38 PM | Report abuse

'What is important to you, abortion, education, the environment, or KEEPING US SAFE!' Nice loaded question there Rudy.

If Guiliani thinks for 2 seconds that he can lose Iowa, NH, and SC and still win he is sadly mistaken. One or two candidates will win those three states and they will be the only candidates that get ANY media attention.

Posted by: Andy R | August 28, 2007 12:35 PM | Report abuse

My personal suspicion, based on anecdotal evidence, is that the Giuliani strategy in FL could work - but primarily with the transplanted Yanks; less so with the locals. The mayor's abrasive style can be attractive to the New York / New Jersey / New England types, but less so with Midwesterners or Westerners. And even those broad statements require qualification; upstate new yorkers are a lot different from the urbanites. Samething in Mass, the Bostoners & Berksherites are wholly different breeds.

Posted by: bsimon | August 28, 2007 12:34 PM | Report abuse

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