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11801  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media Issues on: June 28, 2007, 03:17:56 PM
I can't stand "Savage" for more than 30 seconds. Don't catch Hannity that often. I take "Savage" to be something akin to Phil Hendrie rather than legitimate commentary. I'm curious what exactly Sean Hannity has said that you consider to be racist? I doubt very much the majority of talk radio listeners have the talk show hosts "doing their thinking for them". People who like talk radio tend to read and think and also trend upwards in income from the general population. Check the demos.
11802  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media Issues on: June 28, 2007, 02:09:34 PM
I've never been a fan of Lott, even less so with his "Talk radio is running America. We have to deal with that problem.” statement. I guess us uppity citizens should just shut up and let our betters in DC doing our thinking for us.

However, funny how those attacking Lott for his Strom Thurmond statement seem to give Robert "KKK" Byrd a pass.

11803  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media Issues on: June 27, 2007, 10:43:33 PM
The dems have tried. Air America has gone bankrupt how many times now?
11804  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: June 27, 2007, 10:41:42 PM
Mexico has draconian laws against illegal immigration that they enforce. Remittances from Mexicans in Estados Unidos are a major part of Mexico's economy. Not only are they "hands off", the Mexican gov't has published comic book guides on how to illegally enter the US. What poverty problem, just outsource your poor to America....
11805  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media Issues on: June 27, 2007, 05:51:18 PM
Kerry joins 'Fairness Doctrine' chorus
Also wants to bring back equal-time provisions

Posted: June 27, 2007
10:28 a.m. Eastern

© 2007

Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass. (Photo: NBC 'Meet the Press')
John Kerry openly stated his support of the overturned "Fairness Doctrine" that required broadcasters in America to "afford reasonable opportunity for the discussion of conflicting views of public importance."

The Federal Communications Commission overturned the rule in 1987 because it failed to accomplish its purpose of encouraging more discussion of controversial issues. More notably, concerns were raised over the constitutionality of the doctrine because many believed it violated First Amendment free speech rights.

"I think the fairness doctrine ought to be there, and I also think equal time doctrine ought to come back," he said on the Brian Lehrer show on WNYC.

Kerry's remarks can be heard in a recording posted by the Drudge Report.

"These are the people that wiped out … one of the most profound changes in the balance of the media is when the conservatives got rid of the equal time requirements and the result is that they have been able to squeeze down and squeeze out opinion of opposing views and I think its been a very important transition in the imbalance of our public eye," Kerry argued.

Kerry also favored reinstating the Equal Time Rule, which requires television and radio stations to allocate equal airtime to political candidates.

Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, recently introduced in Congress a plan to revive the Fairness Doctrine.

Sen. Diane Feinstein, D-Calif., said this week she is considering the possibility of bringing it back.

"Well, I'm looking at it, as a matter of fact … because I think there ought to be an opportunity to present the other side," said Feinstein in an interview with Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday. "And unfortunately, talk radio is overwhelmingly one way."
11806  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Cut and Run democrats....From Afghanistan on: June 27, 2007, 05:47:07 PM

Nuanced Cut and Run

The latest area from which Congressional Democrats want to cut and run is Afghanistan. Isn't that where there's widespread support and al Qaeda continues to operate on the border region in concert with the Taliban? So why are the usual suspects among Congressional Democrats calling for the US to get out?

A few congressional Democrats go so far as suggesting that the Pentagon should pull out of Afghanistan now, while others say that troop withdrawal will be addressed after the military is out of Iraq.

Rep. Neil Abercrombie (D-Hawaii), a senior defense authorizer, wants the U.S. out of Afghanistan immediately, calling operations there “futile” in trying to effect political change in a country with a tangled history.

Most other Democrats want to focus on Afghanistan, with the goal of withdrawing the military down the road after the country is stabilized and any new Taliban resurgence quashed.

With a few exceptions, congressional Democrats no longer show any hesitation about withdrawing the military from Iraq. But they are more circumspect about Afghanistan, saying that the Bush administration let the situation worsen by shifting attention onto a protracted conflict in Iraq.

“We should have never gone to Iraq, because we would have been out of Afghanistan [by now],” Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.) said in a brief interview.

Murtha, the chairman of the House Appropriations defense subcommittee and a vocal opponent of the war in Iraq, said that by September, when he takes up the fiscal 2008 war supplemental funding, he would have a better sense of how to handle Afghanistan.

Yet making the argument that the U.S. needs to get out of Iraq and stay in Afghanistan can be politically challenging. While Democrats regularly note that the war in Iraq has now gone on longer than World War II, the U.S. has been in Afghanistan longer than it has been in Iraq. And arguments that Iraqis need to take control of their own country can be applied to Afghanistan as well.

The Afghanistan effort enjoys much more support among the American public, and Democratic leaders have sought to burnish their homeland security credentials by presenting an unwavering backing of the war there.
It's all about politics and seeking to game the situation to their advantage. It has nothing to do with national security or going after al Qaeda or even what's in the best interests of the troops.

This is a decision that is in the best interests of the partisan Democrats who think that this is going to win them seats in the next election.
11807  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media Issues on: June 27, 2007, 05:41:50 PM

I'm sure he's a good journalist, what he does in his off time is his business.... rolleyes
11808  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: June 27, 2007, 05:37:54 PM
11809  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: June 27, 2007, 05:28:46 PM

More important is the fact that, in future years, Social Security benefits will be funded by both Social Security taxes and general revenue. What matters is not the small amount of Social Security taxes that would be paid by amnesty recipients but their overall fiscal balance—that is, the total federal state and local benefits received, minus all taxes paid. Because the total benefits taken by amnesty recipients and their families would exceed the Social Security and other taxes that they would pay, amnesty recipients would undermine, rather than strengthen, financial support for U.S. retirees, even before the amnesty recipients reach retirement age themselves.


The White House suggests that the retirement costs of amnesty recipients would not impose a significant tax burden on U.S. taxpayers.

The Senate bill would give amnesty recipients access not only to means-tested welfare, but also to government retirement benefits. The Heritage Foundation has estimated that the net fiscal costs of amnesty recipients during retirement would be $2.6 trillion. These particular costs would begin to impact the taxpayer about 30 years after enactment of the Senate legislation. The White House has made no specific refutation of this estimate.

The bulk of the net expenditure would be in the Social Security and Medicare programs; substantial costs would also occur in the means-tested Medicaid program (amnesty recipients would be fully eligible for Medicaid benefits long before they reach retirement). Contrary to any suggestions made by the White House, temporary restrictions on access to means-tested welfare by amnesty recipients is irrelevant to the estimated $2.6 trillion cost of amnesty.


The White House does point out that amnesty recipients will have paid Social Security taxes prior to retirement and thereby might be seen as having "earned" all the government benefits they would receive.[10] But, as noted above, the Social Security taxes paid by amnesty recipients would be modest. Even during working years, most amnesty recipients would be a drain on the taxpayer, and during retirement their fiscal cost would be dramatic.


The White House claims that the Senate immigration bill would benefit U.S. taxpayers by increasing the future flow of high skill immigrants (who would be strong net tax contributors) and decreasing the flow of low skill immigrants who are more likely to be a fiscal burden.


The White House claims that the Senate immigration bill would "sharply improve" the fiscal contributions of immigrants by increasing the share of future immigrants who are high skilled.[11] It asserts, "[T]he bill will end chain migration which allows legal immigrants to bring extended family members to the U.S" and replace it with a "new merit-based system to select future immigrants based on [their]…skills and attributes."[12]


In reality, the bill would triple the annual rate of family chain migration, raising the annual allotment for these immigrants from the current level of 147,000 to 440,000 and bringing up to 5.9 million such immigrants into the U.S. over the next decade. Family chain immigrants are predominately low skilled: 60 percent have only a high school degree or less and 38 percent lack a high school degree.[13]


What about the new merit-based system, ostensibly intended to bring in highly educated high tech workers? The core of this proposal is a point system to select future green card holders, but this point system is far from merit-based. For example, green card applicants would receive a high number of points if they are currently employed in "high demand" occupations, which include janitor, waitress, sales clerk, fast food worker, freight handler, laborer, grounds keeping worker, food preparation worker, maid, and house cleaner. Under the proposed point system, a high school dropout working in a fast food restaurant who has the recommendation of her employer would outscore an applicant with a Ph.D. trying to enter the country from abroad. The merit system is actually designed to confer citizenship on low skill "temporary guest workers" rather than bring in professionals from abroad.[14]


The bill would eliminate the current green card allocation for workers of "exceptional ability" but allocate 90,000 green cards per year for the next eight years to reduce the existing employment visa backlog of primarily low skill workers. Contrary to White House claims, it seems unlikely that S. 1348 would increase the number of green cards for high-skill workers, at least through the first eight years of operation.


The White House claims high school dropouts are a "very small part" of the immigrant population.


The Chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisers dismissed Heritage research on the negative fiscal impact of poorly educated immigrants as "relevant only to a very small part of the population" and therefore of little importance in assessing the Senate immigration bill.[15] In reality, a large and disproportionate share of current immigrants in the U.S. is poorly educated. One-third of all current immigrants lack a high school degree, compared to nine percent of native-born Americans. The families of immigrants without a high school degree now comprise 5 percent of the U.S. population. As noted, among the ten million adult illegal immigrants who would receive amnesty and citizenship under the Senate's immigration bill, some 50 to 60 percent lack a high school degree and many have only a high school degree.


The White House asserts that low skill immigrant families impose a substantially lesser burden on taxpayers than do low skill non-immigrant families.


The White House asserts, "[L]ow-skill immigrants are actually comparatively self-sufficient compared to low skill native households."[16] This assertion is false. Low skill immigrants and non-immigrants impose similar burdens on the taxpayer. Wages, tax payments, and receipt of welfare are quite similar for the two groups. Low skill non-immigrants differ from immigrants primarily because they are more likely to be elderly and therefore less likely to be employed.


The White House asserts that the children of low skill immigrants quickly become fiscal contributors (taxes paid exceed benefits and services received) and thereby compensate taxpayers for nearly all the fiscal losses generated by their parents.


The White House has suggested that while low skill immigrants may impose some initial taxpayer costs, these costs are "recovered quickly" by the net taxes paid by the immigrants' children.[17] This is not true. Low skill immigrants impose very heavy costs on U.S. taxpayers. As noted, on average, each low skill immigrant household receives three dollars in benefits for each one dollar of taxes paid; over a lifetime, each household costs the taxpayer more than $1 million.


The children of low skill immigrants do better than their parents. With higher levels of education, they will receive fewer welfare benefits and pay more taxes. Nonetheless, despite this upward progress, the children of immigrant dropouts are likely to remain a net drain on the taxpayers.[18]


The White House asserts that the "children of immigrant parents are 12 percent more likely to obtain a college degree than other natives."[19] It neglects to note that the relevant group, the children of low skill immigrant parents, have below-average educational attainment. For example, the children of Hispanic dropout parents are three times more likely to drop out of high school and 75 percent less likely to have a college degree than the general population.


With prevailing trends in upward mobility, the descendents of immigrant dropouts will not become net tax contributors until the third generation. This means that the net fiscal impact of low skill immigrants will remains negative for 50 to 60 years after the immigrants' arrival in the U.S.


The White House obscures the cost of low skill immigrants.


The White House report asserted that Heritage Foundation research on low skill immigrants is flawed because it lacks a "forward looking projection."[20] The Council of Economic Advisers stated that, from the 'long-run point of view," low skill immigrants are remarkably inexpensive: Each immigrant without a high school degree costs the taxpayer a mere $13,000 overall.[21] The CEA failed to note that its "long-run point of view" includes the estimated taxes paid by the low skill immigrants' descendents for the next 300 years.[22] In other words, the White House is asserting that taxpayers should not be concerned about the $89 billion annual cost generated by low skill immigrants because that cost would be largely offset by the taxes paid by the immigrants' descendents in the year 2407. In addition, the 300-year estimate cited by White House assumes very large tax increases and benefits reductions in the near future.




In its defense of the Senate immigration bill, the White House employs statistics about the fiscal contributions of college-educated immigrants, but the taxes paid by college-educated immigrants are almost completely irrelevant to a fiscal analysis of S. 1348. The main fiscal impact of S. 1348 will occur through two mechanisms: (1) the grant of amnesty, with accompanying access to Social Security, Medicare and welfare benefits, to 12 million illegal immigrants who are overwhelmingly low skilled; and (2) a dramatic increase in chain immigration, which will also be predominantly low skilled.


In this context, talking about the taxes paid by college-educated immigrants is a red herring and merely serves to obscure the obvious fiscal consequences of the legislation.


The bottom line is that high school dropouts are extremely expensive to U.S. taxpayers. It does not matter whether the dropout comes from Ohio, Tennessee, or Mexico. It does matter that the Senate immigration bill would increase the future flow of poorly educated immigrants into the U.S. and grant amnesty and access to government benefits to millions of poorly educated illegal aliens already here. Such legislation would inevitably impose huge costs on U.S. taxpayers.



[1] The President's Council of Economic Advisers, "Immigration's Economic Impact," June 20, 2007.


[2] Karl Zinsmeister and Edward Lazear, "Lead Weight or Gold Mine: What are the True Costs of Immigration?" RealClearPolitics, June 25, 2007.


[3] Robert Rector and Christine Kim, "The Fiscal Cost of Low-Skill Immigrants to the U.S. Taxpayer," Heritage Foundation Special Report No. 14, May 21, 2007.


[4] Robert Rector, "Amnesty will Cost the U.S. Taxpayers at least $2.6 Trillion," Heritage Foundation WebMemo No. 1490, June 6, 2007, at


[5] Lori Montgomery, "Immigration Lifts Wages, Report Says," Washington Post, June 21, 2007, p. D3.


[6] "Response to False Claims That Illegal Immigrants Will Not Receive Welfare Under Senate Bill," Robert E. Rector, Heritage Foundation WebMemo No. 1509, June 18, 2007.


[7] Ibid.


[8] Zinsmeister and Lazear.


[9] Ibid.


[10] Ibid.


[11] Ibid.


[12] The White House, "Fact Sheet: Ending Chain Migration," May 29, 2007, at


[13] Robert Rector, "Merit-based Immigration under S. 1348: Bringing in the High Tech Waitresses," Heritage Foundation WebMemo No. 1492, June 7, 2007.


[14] Tamar Jacoby, "'Temporary is Temporary' Won't Work for All Immigrants," Los Angeles Times, May 10, 2007, at,0,923297.story.


[15] Interview with Edward Lazear, "Washington Journal," C-SPAN, June 21, 2007.


[16] Zinsmeister and Lazear.


[17] Montgomery, "Immigration Lifts Wages, Report Says."


[18] This conclusion is based on forthcoming research by The Heritage Foundation that employs the fiscal methodology  of Rector and Kim, "The Fiscal Cost of Low-Skill Immigrants to the U.S. Taxpayer."


[19] Zinsmeister and Lazear.


[20] The President's Council of Economic Advisers, "Immigration's Economic Impact," p. 5


[21] Ibid.


[22] National Research Council, The New Americans: Economic, Demographic and Fiscal Effects of Immigration (Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press, 1997), pp. 334, 342.
11810  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: June 27, 2007, 05:28:29 PM
Hiding the Cost of Amnesty  
By Robert Rector
Heritage Foundation | June 27, 2007

Last week, the White House Council of Economic Advisers issued a report entitled "Immigration's Economic Impact" which defended the President's promotion of the Senate's "comprehensive" immigration legislation (S.1348).[1] On June 25, the White House issued a follow-up editorial elaborating on the points made in the CEA report.[2] These publications criticized Heritage Foundation research on the fiscal costs of low skill immigration and amnesty.


The Heritage research criticized by the White House made the following basic points about immigration and its costs:


Individuals without a high school degree impose significant net costs (the extent to which benefits and services received exceed taxes paid) on taxpayers.
The net fiscal cost of families of immigrants who lack a high school degree is not markedly different from the net fiscal cost of families of non-immigrants who lack a high school degree.
Immigrants are disproportionately low skilled; one-third of all immigrants and 50 to 60 percent of illegal immigrants lack a high school degree.
Unlike low and moderate skill immigrants, immigrants with a college education will pay more in taxes than they receive in benefits; therefore. immigration policy should increase the number of high skill immigrants entering the country and sharply decrease the number of low skill, fiscally dependent immigrants.[3]
Heritage research has shown that low skill immigrants (those without a high school degree) receive, on average, three dollars in government benefits and services for each dollar of taxes they pay. This imbalance imposes a net cost of $89 billion per year on U.S. taxpayers. Over a lifetime, the typical low skill immigrant household will cost taxpayers $1.2 million.[4]


Future taxpayer costs will be increased by policies which increase (1) the number of low skill immigrants entering the U.S., (2) the length of low skill immigrants' stays in the U.S., or (3) low skill immigrants' access to government benefits and services. Unfortunately, this is exactly what the Senate immigration bill does:


The bill would triple the flow of low skill chain immigration into the U.S.
By granting amnesty to at least 12 million illegal immigrants, the bill would greatly lengthen their stay in the U.S., particularly during retirement years.
The bill would grant illegal immigrants access to Social Security and Medicare benefits and, over time, to more than 60 different federal welfare programs.
Although the bill does not currently permit Z visa holders to bring spouses and children in from abroad, this would likely be amended at some future point on humanitarian grounds, resulting in another 5 million predominantly low-skill immigrants entering the country.
Heritage research has concluded that the cost of amnesty alone will be $2.6 trillion once the amnesty recipients reach retirement age.


In an effort to defend the Senate bill, the White has contested these conclusions. As described below, many of the assertions made by the White House are inaccurate or misleading.


The White House claims that, under the Senate immigration bill, amnesty recipients would receive little or no welfare.

CEA Chairman Edward Lazear charged that the Heritage claims concerning the cost of the Senate immigration bill were flawed because, under the bill, amnesty recipients would be barred from receiving "the vast majority of welfare benefits."[5] Like previous statements by White House spokesmen,[6] this assertion mischaracterizes the Senate bill and also shows a lack of understanding of the Heritage estimates of the bill's costs.

While provisions of the Senate bill would delay illegal immigrants' access to welfare for several years, over time, nearly all amnesty recipients would be offered legal permanent residence and access to more than 60 federal means-tested welfare programs. Specifically, Z visa holders would immediately be given Social Security numbers and would begin earning entitlement to Social Security and Medicare (which are not means-tested welfare programs). Some ten to thirteen years after enactment, amnesty recipients would begin to gain access to a wide variety of means-tested welfare programs, such as Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, public housing, and Food Stamps.[7] Children born to illegal and legal immigrants in the U.S. have immediate, lifetime access to all welfare programs.

The initial limitation on the receipt of means-tested welfare will have only a small effect on governmental costs. Adult welfare comprises only a small part of the benefits received by immigrant families. Moreover, the average adult amnesty recipient can be expected to live more than 50 years after receiving his Z visa. While his eligibility for means-tested welfare would be constrained for the first 10 to 15 years, each amnesty recipient would be fully eligible for welfare during the last 30 to 40 years of his life. Use of welfare during these years will be heavy.


The White House claims that, to the extent that amnesty recipients receive welfare benefits, they would receive the same low levels of benefits as other poorly educated immigrants, who (in the White House's view) receive little welfare.


The White House reassures taxpayers that amnesty recipients and millions of future low skill immigrants will not generate welfare costs because they must "qualify for…government [welfare] transfers only the old fashioned way."[8] The implication is that those who must struggle to earn access to welfare "the old fashioned way" will, in the end, get very little welfare. Contrary to this claim, the average low skill immigrant family actually receives $10,500 per year in means-tested welfare, or about a half million dollars over the course of a lifetime. Amnesty recipients would indeed gain access to welfare "the old fashioned way," and the old fashioned way is extraordinarily expensive.


The brief delay in adult access to welfare under S. 1348 and current law would have only a tiny effect on the long-term welfare costs of low skill immigrants. Further, the White House's touting the delays on immigrants receiving welfare under existing law is hypocritical: The actual policy pursued by the White House up to this time has been to dismantle the barriers in current law and increase immigrant families' access to welfare.


The White House strongly suggests that, under the Senate immigration bill, amnesty recipients would be net tax contributors.


Some 50 to 60 percent of illegal immigrants who would receive amnesty under S. 1348 lack a high school degree. Another 25 percent have only a high school degree. Based on the example of current immigrants with similar levels of education, these individuals would be a net burden on the taxpayer over the entire course of their lives.


The White House claims that amnesty recipients would increase the net government revenue available to support Americans in retirement.


The White House trumpets that "immigrants improve the solvency of our retirement system."[9] One must assume that they believe that the same will be true of amnesty recipients, because otherwise the assertion would be irrelevant in the current debate. The White House does correctly point out that amnesty recipients would pay Social Security taxes during their working years. Amnesty recipients' low skill levels, however, mean that the Social Security tax payments they make would, on average, be quite modest.

11811  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: June 27, 2007, 05:17:28 PM
There is no need for new laws, just active enforcement of the law already in existance. The borders must be secured. Canada is a staging ground for all sorts of terror cells. Militarize the borders, take the BP agents and turn them over to ICE for internal enforcement. Start seizing assets of employers and the millions of illegals will self-deport.
11812  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media Issues on: June 27, 2007, 05:13:15 PM

Pretty sure? I may have missed it, but i've never seen Fox News do this. Now the dems are pushing the "Fairness Doctrine". I guess talk radio and Fox News are overpowering CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, National Peoples' Radio, all the major newspapers and news magazines, requiring government intervention. cry
11813  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media Issues on: June 27, 2007, 08:53:14 AM

AP Uses Democrat Talking Points in Fred Thompson Hit Piece
Posted by Noel Sheppard on June 26, 2007 - 23:30.

As Democrats complain about conservative dominance on the radio, the hypocrisy is made crystal clear when America's leading wire service copies talking points directly from one of Howard Dean’s e-mail messages for a hit piece on looming Republican presidential candidate Fred Thompson.

Such was identified by Steve Hill of Target Rich Environment who brilliantly outlined the similarities between an e-mail message he received Friday from the Democratic National Committee chairman (complete text with timestamp and e-mail address to follow) with an Associated Press article published Tuesday at (emphasis added throughout):

1. DNC talking point: “In his most recent stint in Washington, Thompson worked for a London company lobbying Congress to limit liability claims for asbestos-related illnesses. Over the past three years he’s made $760,000 fighting for the interests of his corporate clients.

“AP/CNN talking point: ”More recently, while Frist led the Senate, Thompson earned more than $750,000 lobbying for a British reinsurance company that wanted to limit its liability from asbestos lawsuits.

2. DNC Talking Point: “And just this month, as part of his role as the ultimate Washington insider, Thompson offered to host yet another fundraising event for Scooter Libby’s legal defense fund. Thompson has been vocal in his support of Libby, saying that he would “absolutely” pardon him.”

AP/CNN Talking Point: “Thompson also helped run the Scooter Libby Legal Defense Fund Trust, an organization that set out to raise more than $5 million to help finance the legal defense of Vice President Dick Cheney’s former chief of staff, who was convicted in March of lying and obstructing Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald’s investigation into the leak of a CIA operative’s identity.”

3. DNC Talking Point: “For years, acting wasn’t the Law & Order star’s profession — it was a hobby. In the real world, Thompson has made a fortune in a decades-long career as a Washington lobbyist.”

AP/CNN Talking Point: “Republican Fred Thompson, who likes to cast himself in the role of Washington outsider, has a long history as a political insider who earned more than $1 million lobbying the federal government.”

4. DNC Talking Point: “Although the folksy-sounding Tennessean recently told USA TODAY that he would run an outsider, just as he did while campaigning as a “country lawyer” in a red pickup during his 1994 U.S. Senate race, his résumé is that of a longtime Washington operative who has crossed ideological lines to represent corporate and foreign clients.”

AP/CNN Talking Point: “That history as a Washington insider is at odds with the image Thompson has sought to convey to voters. When he first ran for the Senate in 1993, Thompson cast himself in the part of the gruff, plainspoken everyman, leased a red pickup truck and drove around Tennessee in his shirt sleeves.”

Amazing similarities, wouldn’t you agree? Now, check out the e-mail message that Steve received Friday for verification (his address has been removed for his privacy):

From: "Howard Dean" <>
Add to Address Book Add Mobile Alert
To: "Steve Hill" < >
Subject: FW: The inside-outsider
Date: Fri, 22 Jun 2007 09:56:59 -0500

Dear Steve,

I wanted to follow up on Tom's email from Tuesday.

As you probably know, we've got a big job here. Right
now it's up to us -- not the 2008 Democratic
candidates -- to take on Fred Thompson, John McCain,
Rudy Giuliani and the rest of the Republican
presidential hopefuls. And that's why we need your

Last year, the 50-state strategy put organizers on the
ground across the country to stand up to the lies and
failures of the GOP. Those organizers were the key to
our unprecedented victories up and down the ballot in

Unlike many campaigns, our organizers still had a job
when the election was over -- thanks to contributions
from Democrats like you. That sort of support is
crucial to build a party that will fight in every
state for many elections to come, and that support is
what allows us to continue to have organizers working
in your state today.

Just yesterday in Iowa, a DNC-funded organizer was on
the ground distributing facts to reporters after a big
speech by Rudy Giuliani. If we don't continue to
organize and research now, Election Day 2008 could be
one that we'd rather forget.

Don't let that happen -- support our efforts today:

November 2008 may seem like a long time from now, but
Democrats aren't waiting to take our country back.


Gov. Howard Dean, M.D.

P.S: If you didn't get a chance to read about the real
Fred Thompson, check out the email Tom sent a few days


From: Tom McMahon

Subject: The inside-outsider

Dear Howard,

Remember the Republican culture of corruption? The
revolving door of Republican politicians moving in and
out of top political offices and Washington D.C.
lobbying firms?

That's Republican presidential candidate Fred

For years, acting wasn't the Law & Order star's
profession -- it was a hobby. In the real world,
Thompson has made a fortune in a decades-long career
as a Washington lobbyist.

And just this month, as part of his role as the
ultimate Washington insider, Thompson offered to host
yet another fundraising event for Scooter Libby's
legal defense fund. Thompson has been vocal in his
support of Libby, saying that he would "absolutely"
pardon him.

As he runs for president, he'll try his hardest to
hide the truth from the American people. And we need
to stop him.

Support our efforts to get the truth out about Fred

Here's what the USA Today had to say about Lobbyist

"Although the folksy-sounding Tennessean recently told
USA TODAY that he would run an outsider, just as he
did while campaigning as a "country lawyer" in a red
pickup during his 1994 U.S. Senate race, his résumé is
that of a longtime Washington operative who has
crossed ideological lines to represent corporate and
foreign clients."

In his most recent stint in Washington, Thompson
worked for a London company lobbying Congress to limit
liability claims for asbestos-related illnesses. Over
the past three years he's made $760,000 fighting for
the interests of his corporate clients.

Now Fred Thompson wants the American people to believe
he's the next Ronald Reagan -- a Washington outsider
with Hollywood charisma and conservative appeal. But

Thompson just plays the role of straight-shooting outsider

on TV. In reality, he's as inside as you can get.

He's trying to get to the White House on slick lines
and good acting. Help us stop him:

As Fred Thompson tries to go from Washington's K Street

to Pennsylvania Avenue, the stakes of his
candidacy couldn't be higher. In an interview just
last week, for example, he claimed that the Roe v.
Wade decision "was fabricated out of whole cloth," and
that it was the worst court ruling in the past 40

We need to make sure that in 2008, Fred Thompson goes
back to doing his acting on Law & Order -- not in the
White House.

Make a contribution today:

While the Democratic presidential candidates hit the
campaign trail, we'll be hitting the Republicans. It's
our job to tell the American people the facts about
opponents like Fred Thompson and to hold them

We can't finish that job without you. I hope you'll
join us.


Tom McMahon
DNC Executive Director

Extraordinary similarities, yes?

In reality, we shouldn’t be too surprised, as the folks at Power Line identified some interesting information about this AP writer, Travis Loller (emphasis added):

Ms. Loller has a rather colorful past as a left-wing activist. Mother Jones described her as a "radical":

Three American citizens, along with nine other foreigners, were deported from Mexico on April 12, 1998 for alleged collusion with the Zapatista rebels (EZLN). The woman, Travis Loller, 26, and two men, Michael Sabato, 30, and Jeffrey Conant, 30, are part of an American relief group called Intercambio de Tecnologia Apropiada (ITA) or, in English, Appropriate Technology Exchange. The Mexican government accused the three of agitating for the rebel army that's been struggling in the southeastern state of Chiapas for over four years in an effort to win basic civil rights and gain land reform for the indigenous Indians in the region.


The three Americans have extensive activist histories, having worked for reproductive rights, the homeless and protests against the Gulf War, the Rodney King verdict and Propositions 187 and 209.

Now, Loller works for the Associated Press, apparently with assistance from the Democrat Party.

Anybody want to talk about the Fairness Doctrine?
11814  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: World Trade Center Tower 7 on: June 26, 2007, 08:38:59 PM
The Purdue Study is not an independent investigation but was funded by the NSF or National Science Foundation which is a governmental organization that recently was granted an increase which doubled their annual budget to $6 billion.

The head of the NSF is Arden L. Bement, Jr. who worked for the DoD and on DARPA programs.

The director of the Purdue study is Mete A. Sozen, Ph.D., S.E. who served on the ASCE team that studied the OKC bombing.

****So what? Do you know what "peer reviewed" means?****

**The burden of proof is on you. You're making the assertion. So, again, what happened on 9/11? It's a simple question.** 

Sure GM, it may be a simple question but would require a complicated answer.  And then of course you would want sources (and rightly so) for every detail, which would be exhaustive.  It is far more constructive for me to simply point out inconsistencies and lies within the official version.  I think your mind is made up in either case.  That doesn’t bother me at all.

****It would require you to give a coherent narrative of the events of 9/11 with corroborative evidence. Something you and the other "Truther" loons can't do. Here is a simple exercise, prove to me you weren't part of the 9/11 conspiracy. Have fun proving a negative..... evil

It seems like you are taking this a little too personally.  ** Let me guess, you're just much smarter than us.....**  This gave me flashbacks of fighting on a preschool playground!! 

****If you had a grasp of deductive logic, geopolitics and physics above that level of education, you couldn't be a truther.****

I’m not saying there aren’t jihadists.  Of course there is, but jihadists are not the real danger. 

****Ah, it's so much more comforting to imagine that "the real enemy" is a room full of rich white guys rather than millions of savages across the globe, isn't it?****

Funny how the Patriot Act was rushed through Congress without any legislators reading the bill. 

****Ever read legislation? Very few legislators ever do, they have employees who do that. The size and complexity of modern legislation is overwhelming. In the crisis post-9/11 are you surprised the patriot act was passed? BTW, I think it was good legislation.****

Strange how PNAC called for a catalyzing event like a “New Pearl Harbor” in 2000 to propel our military into the 21st century and was signed by neo-cons like Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz. 

****SO what?****

 .  Mohammed Atta’s passport fly’s unscathed through the burning wreckage and onto the streets of New York to be immediately identified as one of the hijackers. 

****It wasn't immediately identified, there were tons of debris scattered everywhere. Debris scattered from the impact WOULDN'T have burned due to it having been thrown clear. A TRAINED investigator knows this.****

The FBI already had names of hijackers within hours of the crash even though they were not listed on the flight manifests. 

****Cite your source.****

The government refuses to issue any meaningful video footage of the Pentagon crash.  The wreckage of Flight 93 being reduced to nothing larger than pieces the size of phonebooks spread out over 5 miles and no identifiable body parts yet they tell us it collided with the ground. 

****In your experience and training in the field of aviation accident investigation, what should the crash site look like?****

(BTW the wreckage of Flight 93 is being stored in a vault underground at Iron Mountain rather than being reconstructed by the hands of the FAA or TSA which is SOP for an airplane accident)

****The TSA has NOTHING to do with avaiation crash investigation, and as a matter of fact DID NOT EXIST on 9/11 so i'm not sure how they were supposed to investigate the crash. The FAA isn't the investigative agency either. Sorry, didn't mean to get any reality on your fantasy.****

Three Skyscrapers falling to the ground at free fall speed (no resistance by the lower floors or the 47 steel columns) in one day in which one of the towers was not hit by a plane. 

****Really? Who made the tv footage I watched? Lucasfims? How about all the New Yorkers that watch the planes impact firsthand? Part of the conspiracy too? I talked with a Manhattan resident who saw the whole thing firsthand. I guess he was a CIA plant, right?****

Never in the history of steel skyscrapers has this happened. 

****You mean there weren't other 9/11 attacks before 9/11? Wow, that's a brilliant insight! Very compelling arguement there!****

Our leaders telling us that they never conceived of such an attack even though there is ample proof otherwise. 

****How many elected leaders have any degree of training and background in anti-terrorism or counterterrorism? Pre-9/11, this wasn't a topic on anyone's mind outside of those specialists in those fields. The Clinton administration went through both terms without doing more than some token missile attacks on empty tents and a phamaceutical factory. The FIRST WTC attack was in 1993. Why then? Why didn't Clinton visit the site, even though he was in New Jersey at the time? Bojinka was hatched during the Clinton administration and Clinton let al qaeda spread it's tentacles around the world.  Conspiracy?Huh??****

 How much evidence does one need to smell a cover-up? 

****Words mean things, they have actual definitions. You are misusing the word "EVIDENCE".****

ev·i·dence      [ev-i-duhns] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation noun, verb, -denced, -denc·ing.
1.   that which tends to prove or disprove something; ground for belief; proof.
2.   something that makes plain or clear; an indication or sign: His flushed look was visible evidence of his fever.
3.   Law. data presented to a court or jury in proof of the facts in issue and which may include the testimony of witnesses, records, documents, or objects.
–verb (used with object)
4.   to make evident or clear; show clearly; manifest: He evidenced his approval by promising his full support.
5.   to support by evidence: He evidenced his accusation with incriminating letters.
6.   in evidence, plainly visible; conspicuous: The first signs of spring are in evidence.
[Origin: 1250–1300; ME (n.) < MF < L évidentia. See evident, -ence]

—Synonyms 3. information, deposition, affidavit. Evidence, exhibit, testimony, proof refer to information furnished in a legal investigation to support a contention. Evidence is any information so given, whether furnished by witnesses or derived from documents or from any other source: Hearsay evidence is not admitted in a trial. An exhibit in law is a document or article that is presented in court as evidence: The signed contract is Exhibit A. Testimony is usually evidence given by witnesses under oath: The jury listened carefully to the testimony. Proof is evidence that is so complete and convincing as to put a conclusion beyond reasonable doubt: proof of the innocence of the accused. 4. demonstrate.

****Now, let's look at the word "ALLEGATION".****

al·le·ga·tion      [al-i-gey-shuhn] Pronunciation Key - Show IPA Pronunciation
1.   the act of alleging; affirmation.
2.   an assertion made with little or no proof.
3.   an assertion made by a party in a legal proceeding, which the party then undertakes to prove.
4.   a statement offered as a plea, excuse, or justification.
[Origin: 1375–1425; late ME < L allég?ti?n- (s. of allég?ti?), equiv. to allég?t(us), ptp. of allég?re to adduce in support of a plea (al- al- + -lég?re, deriv. of léx law; see legal) + -i?n- -ion]

—Synonyms 1, 2. charge, accusation; claim, contention.

****Do you understand the difference now?****

First they told us the passengers of Flight 93 were communicating via cell phone. 

****Who is "they"?****

When it was shown that cell phones do not normally work at those altitudes and at that speed, the government recanted their statement and said that onboard airphones, not cell phones, were being used even though one of the calls they say came from the bathroom. 

****Cite your source.****

First Larry Silverstein says “pull it, and we watched the tower collapse” and later issues a statement that he meant pull the firefighters out of the building even though there were no firefighters in the building before the collapse.  Who refers to firefighters as ‘it’ anyways?  Even John Kerry was confused whether WTC7 was taken down by controlled demolition as shown in the link above.

****So, now John Kerry is part of the conspiracy too? So exactly how many people were involved in the "conspiracy"?****

I’m not saying anyone is smarter than anyone else, but we have got to pay attention to what is going on!! 

****Howabout paying attention to the websites i've posted that demolish all your bogus claims?****

How many times would you let your girlfriend or wife lie to you before you stopped believing anything she said?  This government lies to us all the time and is shrouded in secrecy. 

****Wow, that's a sophisticated analysis.  rolleyes If there is a nation with a greater degree of transparency in it's government i'd like to know about it. Please cite the nation or nations with a greater degree of open records laws.****

Have we lost our nerves as a free people?  After all the deceit, scandal, and corruption from D.C., do we still just turn our backs and trust our all-mighty government, controlled by career politicians and corporate lobbyists to take care of us? 

****Wow, chest thumping rhetoric! Aside from cutting and pasting from fringe websites, what have YOU done?****

Whenever they take a freedom away, we never get it back!! 

****Please explain in detail what freedom you don't have now that you did pre-9/11.****

The Bill of Rights has been shredded, the Constitution according to Bush is just a “goddamned piece of paper.” 

****Please cite your source. I really want to see this quote.****

The so-called conservative Bush administration is spending money like a drunken sailor yet Congress is supposed to control our budget.  Not only is our southern border wide open but we prosecute Border Patrol Agents and throw them in prison for 12 years when they were just doing their job!! 

****Destroying evidence of a shooting falls outside the job description of any law enforcement officer. That's what jammed up Ramos and Compean.****

We have become completely dependant on cheap Chinese trinkets built by slave labor yet we are told it is a free market.  Detention centers are being built all over the country just waiting for some disaster to fill them up.

****Really? Where? Show me.****

  We are using mercenaries like BlackWater (oil) security and calling them contractors. 

****Blackwater's name has nothing to do with oil. Can you tell me the actual origin? Crafty knows someone who was with Blackwater from the early days. Contractors do lots of jobs for the federal gov't because it's cheaper and easier in many cases. I've worked as a contract employee for the USG several times.****

Currently we have 120,000 BlackWater ‘contractors’ in Iraq. 

****What's the  your source for this number?****

We pay ‘contractors’ 6 times the amount a soldier receives and when a soldier comes home wounded, our Veterans Hospitals are not equipped nor receive the proper funding to handle them. 

****Contractor aren't covered by the USG's infastructure. If they are wounded or killed, they don't get a .mil retirement or benefits. They take the chances in exchange for the money. The USG does it because it's cheaper.****

This country is being destroyed on purpose in the name of globalization. 

****On purpose is again, your assertion.****

Our infrastructure paid by tax dollars is being sold to private foreign industries.  Our National Parks are being held as collateral for our debt under the UN as ‘World Heritage Sites.’  Yet as soon as someone says New World Order, everyone gasps and denies that such a thing exists, even though it says Norvo Ordo Seclorum on the back of our dollar bill!!! 



Novus means: new, young, novel.
Ordo means: row, series, order.
Seclorum means: of the ages, of the generations, of the centuries.
An accurate translation of Novus Ordo Seclorum is "A New Order of the Ages," but the meaning of this motto is better understood when seen in its original context.

NOTE: Novus ordo seclorum does not properly translate into "new world order," which is an English phrase that, if converted to Latin, would not be novus ordo seclorum. Seclorum is a plural form (new worlds order?), and Thomson specifically said the motto refers to "the new American era" commencing in 1776.

****We'll put down Latin as another thing you don't understand.****

But it could never happen to us in America!!!  It is happening right now and no one seems to notice.  We were built on self reliance and individualism yet over 53% of this population is receiving a government paycheck whether through labor or welfare. 

****But you don't like contractors either....****

And who would ever bite the hand that feeds them?  Our currency is no longer respected around the world and frankly neither is this country. 

****So the rich conspirators are trying to bankrupt themselves?****

This is no accident, it is not just a few mistakes or bad decision making, it is not liberalism or conservativism, it is the deliberate destruction of America from the inside.

You want to know what happened on 9-11?  It was the beginning of WWIII.  WWI they gave us the League of Nations, WWII they gave us the UN, WWIII they will give us a global government whether you like it or not.

****The UN couldn't organize a backyard picnic, the league of nations was even more worthless, so if the "one world gov't" is anything like those entities i'm not scared.****

Albert Pike was a Confederate General during the Civil War.  He was also the founder of the KKK yet he is the only Confederate General to have his statue in Washington D.C. 

****Albert Pike was NOT the founder of the KKK. The founders were: Confederate Civil War veterans Captain John C. Lester, Major James R. Crowe, John D. Kennedy, Calvin Jones, Richard R. Reed, Frank O. McCord. It's well documented, look it up. ISN'T a good source of information.****

He said in 1870 that it would require three world wars in order to create a one world government.  The third war should be a religious war consisting of Christians and Jews fighting against Muslims.  People will become so sick of monotheistic religion that they will allow government to become their god.

****Again, let's see the source documents here.****

Conspiracy or Coincidence?  If you believe it is just coincidence, we will continue on a path toward internal suicide under the guise of democracy with no accountability rather than a constitutional republic as was originally intended by our founding fathers.

11815  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iran on: June 25, 2007, 07:02:47 PM

Iranian forces crossed Iraqi border: report   

Jun 25 07:23 PM US/Eastern

Iranian Revolutionary Guard forces have been spotted by British troops crossing the border into southern Iraq, The Sun tabloid reported on Tuesday.
Britain's defence ministry would not confirm or deny the report, with a spokesman declining to comment on "intelligence matters".

An unidentified intelligence source told the tabloid: "It is an extremely alarming development and raises the stakes considerably. In effect, it means we are in a full on war with Iran -- but nobody has officially declared it."

"We have hard proof that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps have crossed the border to attack us. It is very hard for us to strike back. All we can do is try to defend ourselves. We are badly on the back foot."

The Sun said that radar sightings of Iranian helicopters crossing into the Iraqi desert were confirmed to it by very senior military sources.

In response to the report, a British defence ministry spokesman said: "There is evidence that explosive devices used against our troops in southern Iraq originated in Iran."

"Any Iranian link to armed militias in Iraq either through weapons supply, training or funding are unacceptable."

Britain has about 7,100 soldiers in Iraq, most of whom are based in the southern city of Basra and surrounding areas, though the government has pledged to reduce that to between 5,000 and 5,500 this year.
11816  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iran on: June 25, 2007, 06:19:38 PM

Where are the protests? Where are the outraged leftists? Where is the mainstream media coverage?
11817  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Afghanistan-Pakistan on: June 25, 2007, 06:04:36 PM

6 year old jihad!
11818  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: World Trade Center Tower 7 on: June 23, 2007, 03:10:02 PM

MKH undercover among the "Truthers".
11819  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: World Trade Center Tower 7 on: June 22, 2007, 09:14:36 PM

All those who aren't in need of psychiatric care will grasp the information within.
11820  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: World Trade Center Tower 7 on: June 22, 2007, 08:50:24 PM

Science or CIA disinformation? You be the judge. Yes Brian, I know that PBS has three letters just like CIA, thus that's your proof the website is bogus.... rolleyes
11821  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Mil-blogs: Michael Yon and others (support our troops) on: June 22, 2007, 07:47:32 PM
I just pay-pal'ed him 25.00. I wish Rogt and Milt read his work. They might might get it then.
11822  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: World Trade Center Tower 7 on: June 22, 2007, 03:25:33 PM
I went to work for the US Gov't post-9/11. I gave up a dream job as a DA's Investigator to do so. I was TDY in New York spring/early summer 2002. I've been to ground zero. Have you? I worked with NYPD and PAPD officers. By New York standards, PAPD is a small agency. Many of the officers I worked with knew someone that died on 9/11.Most had worked at ground zero in the days after. Funny, none of us were worried about the CIA doing another attack, we were looking for jihadists. Let me guess, you're just much smarter than us.....
11823  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: World Trade Center Tower 7 on: June 22, 2007, 02:56:48 PM
The burden of proof is on you. You're making the assertion. So, again, what happened on 9/11? It's a simple question.
11824  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: World Trade Center Tower 7 on: June 21, 2007, 05:09:23 PM
Why can't you answer the simplest question of what happened on 9/11? Anyone can claim ANYTHING. Serious claims require SERIOUS EVIDENCE.

"I don't think for one second that you would accept my beliefs."

**Here is the problem. It's a belief system for you. No logic or rational thinking involved. It fulfills some core need for you. This has become some sort of cargo cult for the disenfranchised in this society. Again, I would cite you as exhibit A for the articles on the psychology of the "Truthers".

  "Besides, my beliefs are irrelevant when arguing fact"

You have yet to produce anything resembling a fact. I have to wonder if you even know the difference in definition between beliefs and facts.

Again, articulate what happened on 9/11 and your corroborative evidence supporting your assertions.
11825  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Free Speech vs. Islamic Fascism (formerly Buy DANISH!!!) on: June 20, 2007, 07:13:04 PM
I have two family members in harm's way in the GWOT. One on an aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf, the other a member of a Marine rifle company engaged in combat operations as we speak. What's your investment in our losing? Who's over the line?
11826  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: World Trade Center Tower 7 on: June 20, 2007, 05:32:38 PM
Speaking of failing to address issues, what REALLY happened on 9/11? No endless links to "Trufer" sites. Tell me who, what, why, when and where and how. Your words, not more links to
11827  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: World Trade Center Tower 7 on: June 20, 2007, 05:22:52 PM
I wish the WTC's structural supports had been this dense....

Let's do a little link analysis 101. I watch Joe Felon go into Wells Fargo to deposit money. I watch you go into the same bank. You withdraw money from the same teller Joe Felon deposited money with. Does this create a nexus between you and Joe Felon?
11828  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Free Speech vs. Islamic Fascism (formerly Buy DANISH!!!) on: June 20, 2007, 05:13:45 PM
Posted on: Today at 02:41:01 PM
Posted by: rogt
Insert Quote
Woof Tom,

The reasons we were given for getting into this war were complete BS, and there is simply no denying this.  

**Saddam was a well documented state sponsor of terrorism and had everyone convinced he had WMD. After 9/11, it was clear he needed to go.**

We attacked a sovereign nation that had never attacked us and that we have not been able to prove (even after the fact) was an actual threat to us, which is a war crime under international law.  

 rolleyes **I love it when people who know nothing about the law try to cite it to support their bogus assertions. Please cite the applicable statute you allege was violated, Mr. "War Crimes" expert. Saddam signed a cease fire at the end of the Gulf War, which he violated for years afterwards. If you got your information from  sources other than Bay Area bumper stickers, you might be able to comment with a little more credibility.**

We have tortured people and illegally "rendered" others to secret prisons so they could be tortured.  Also war crimes.

**Again, your assertion without evidence.**

As I see it, any victory of ours under these circumstances would be seen by our leaders as having justified these crimes, and would thus increase the temptation to use the same methods again in the future.  We would see ourselves as having a blank check to wage war against anybody we decide is a threat to our "national security" for any reason.  No country should have that right.

**We are fighting a war for our very survival. Maybe it will take the deaths of people you care about to wake you up to this. I can't appeal to your patriotism, being a good leftist, you have none, so I guess it'll come down to when you find some sort of personal stake in the war.**
11829  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Communicating with the Muslim World on: June 20, 2007, 01:34:00 PM

Stuff worth reading on addressing the global jihad.
11830  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: World Trade Center Tower 7 on: June 19, 2007, 10:23:47 PM

11831  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: World Trade Center Tower 7 on: June 19, 2007, 03:45:34 PM

11832  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: June 19, 2007, 03:12:34 PM
Fred Thompson's Remarks to Policy Exchange in London
By Fred Thompson
Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Thank you very much. Charles Moore, Anthony Browne, Dean Godson, distinguished guests: I appreciate the cordial welcome to London. I always look forward to visiting the United Kingdom, and this time around I couldn’t ask for a better host than the Policy Exchange.

We have a few policies back home that we’d like to exchange, and think tanks like this are the place to come. After just five years, the Policy Exchange ranks among the best, and the fine reputation of your work has reached Washington as well. I congratulate all of you, and I thank you for the hospitality.

Your kind invitation brings me here just as Great Britain prepares to greet an incoming prime minister.

Back in the U.S., we’re able to watch the House of Commons’ “Prime Minister’s Question Time,” which Mr. Brown will now endure. I’ve thought that America needed a weekly question and answer period between the President and Congress. But in the past few months I’ve decided it isn’t such a good idea.

Your system also allows a change in the head of government at a moment's notice. Even your general election campaigns are mercifully brief.

Of course we believe in long presidential campaigns in the U.S. Most American politicians are afraid they won’t be considered serious candidates until they’ve made a promise a hundred times and spent a hundred million dollars. Though every now and then you still get some slow-poke who takes his time before announcing.

I congratulate Mr. Brown, and I wish him well as the 53rd prime minister of the United Kingdom. And if you’ll allow me a word about the 52nd … we’ll miss him. There are disputes of party here that are strictly British affairs. But sometimes the better points of statesmen possibly are seen more clearly at a distance.

We are profoundly grateful for the friendship of the British people, and in America we’ll always remember Mr. Blair as a gallant friend, even when it did him no good politically.

When we in the States take the measure of your leaders, their party affiliation doesn’t really count for a whole lot. It’s been this way for a while now, at every moment when it mattered. It was true in the days of Churchill and Roosevelt … of Thatcher and Reagan … and Blair and Bush.

Differences of party and domestic policy are incidental, compared to the bigger considerations that define Britain and America as allies. On both sides of the Atlantic, what matters most are the commitments we share, and the work we are called to do in common. This work is based upon the principles we hold – primarily, the right of free people to govern themselves. We also believe that the rule of law, market economies, property rights, and trade with other nations are the underpinnings of a free society.

When historians of the modern era speak of the great democracies, of civilization and its defenders, that’s us they’re talking about – we and our democratic friends across Europe and beyond.

In the long progress of the world toward liberty, it was not by chance that this lowly province of the Roman Empire became a great teacher of democracy and the model of self-government. And it wasn’t just luck that turned a troublesome British colony into the inspiration for all those who seek freedom. There is a reason why Britain and America were thrown together as partners in this world. The things that unite the American and British peoples? They don’t change with the names of leaders or with the passing of years.

It was Harold MacMillan who best summed up the shared experiences of British and American leaders in the last century. In his later years, Lord Stockton was asked what he considered the greatest challenge in all his years as a statesman. And in that English way, he put it in a word: “Events, my dear boy, events.”

Events often have a way of intruding upon the plans of free people. As a rule, people in democratic societies prefer to take care of the business of life. They raise families. They work and they trade. They create wealth and they share it. Above all in free societies, we live by the law – and, at our best, we look after one another, too. Yet in every generation, “events” can be counted on to change the plan, sometimes in tragic ways.

Often the cause of our grief is a misplaced trust in the good intentions of others. In our dealings with other nations, people in free countries are not the type to go looking for trouble. We tend to extend our good will to other nations, assuming that it will be returned in kind. No matter how clear the signals, sometimes in history even the best of men failed to act in time to prevent the worst from happening.

The United States and the United Kingdom have learned this lesson both ways – in great evils ignored, and in great evils averted. We learned it from a World War that happened and, in the decades afterward, from the World War that didn’t happen.

We must conclude that the greatest test of leadership – in your country or mine, in this time or any other – can be simply stated. We must shape events, and not be left at their mercy. And in all things, to protect ourselves and to assure the peace, the great democracies of the world must stick together. We must be willing to make tough decisions today in order to avert bigger problems tomorrow. We must be prepared to meet threats before threats become tragedies.

These are not considerations relevant only to the people of Great Britain and the United States. The relationship between the United States and all of Europe is valued by both sides and has benefited the world. NATO has not only been an effective tool for our efforts, it symbolizes our commonality.

Changes in leadership on both sides of the Atlantic will give us new opportunities. Often in the history of nations, leaders rise to meet the times. These times require those with the wisdom and courage to see past the next election cycle.

The United States and our European allies must begin to forge a new understanding that matches the times we live in. This must be an understanding based upon candor if we are to come closer to agreement as to the nature of the challenges we face.

I have great hope for such a new understanding among NATO allies. We would never want to look back on a campaign we’d undertaken to realize we’d fallen short for lack of commitment or material support. Today our enemies do not doubt our military strength. They do question our determination. Our efforts will require ongoing dialogue based upon mutual respect and mutual interests.

For many Americans, there is a concern that even among our friends, some people are instinctively uncomfortable with U.S. power. Some on the Continent speak of the need for Europe to balance U.S. influence. Americans worry that this sentiment could, over time, lead to an uncoupling of the alliance. And if constraining U.S. power is that important, would our European friends be comfortable with other powers serving as a counterweight to the United States?

Some who seek to check U.S. power believe that legitimacy may only be conferred by international consensus as represented by the UN Security Council. They ask, “If a country can invade another nation for its own good reasons, what is the logical stopping point?”

The American response is to ask how, then, does one justify non-Security-Council-sanctioned actions, such as Kosovo? What are nations allowed to do when the UN cannot muster the political will to act? How many countries must be involved in an action before legitimacy is conferred? Is it just European countries that count? And, how do we deal with problems in concert when many of us don’t agree on the extent or nature of the problem?

For our part, we in the United States must make a better case for our views and our actions. It is possible that things that are perfectly obvious to us may not be so obvious even to those who wish us well. We must be willing to listen and we must be willing to share our intelligence to the maximum extent appropriate.

We must be prepared to make our case not just privately, but to the people of Europe and the world in order to build political support for cooperation. The world is not stronger if America is weaker – or is perceived to be weaker. The same is true of Britain and truer still of our NATO alliance. And we must be capable of making that case.

In return, it is fair to expect that our allies will not put their trade and commercial interests above world security. It is also fair to ask that Europeans consider the consequences if they are wrong about the threat to the Western world.

Many in Europe simply have a different view from that of the United States as to the threat of radical Islamic fundamentalism. They think that the threat is overblown. That despite September 11th, and July 7th and other attacks in Europe and elsewhere, America is the main target and therefore the problem is basically an American one. The fact that no weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq at a particular point in time resolves the matter for them. Also, they see no meaningful connection between terrorist groups and countries like Iran.

Admittedly, even some in America think that the threat is overblown, and that if we had not gone into Iraq, we’d have no terrorism problem.

However, most Americans feel differently. We understand that the Western world is in an international struggle with jihadists who see this struggle as part of a conflict that has gone on for centuries, and who won’t give up until Western countries are brought to their knees. I agree with this view. I believe that the forces of civilization must work together with common purpose to defeat the terrorists who for their own twisted purposes have murdered thousands, and who are trying to acquire technology to murder millions more.

When terrorists in their video performances pledge more and bigger attacks to come, against targets in both Europe and America, these are not to be shrugged off as idle boasts. They must be taken at their word.

When the president of Iran shares his nightmare visions before cheering crowds, those are not just the fanatic’s version of an empty applause line. The only safe assumption is that he means it. If we know anything from modern history, it is that when fanatical tyrants pledge to “wipe out” an entire nation, we should listen. We must gather our alliance, and do all in our power to make sure that such men do not gain the capability to carry out their evil ambitions.

Of course, diplomacy is always to be preferred in our dealings with dangerous regimes. But I believe diplomacy, as Franklin Roosevelt put it, is more than “note writing.” The words of our leaders command much closer attention from adversaries when it is understood that we and our allies are prepared to use force when force is necessary.

The campaign in Afghanistan is a prime example of this, both as a largely successful effort against a terrorist state and as a logical extension of the mission of NATO, which now reaches far beyond the boundaries of Europe.

As in Iraq, the effort has involved great sacrifice from the brave sons and daughters of Britain. By their valor, and by the sustained action of NATO in Afghanistan, we have shown our seriousness of purpose against terrorism … an ability to move beyond the military models of Cold War days … and a capacity to shift tactics and technology to fight an enemy who defends no state and observes no code.

Even in the midst of all the divisiveness with regard to our actions in Iraq, the United States, Great Britain and our coalition should be proud of what we have averted. Imagine Saddam Hussein and his murderous sons in power today successfully defying the international community and free to pursue weapons programs.

Of course political realism is back in the ascendancy since the difficulties in Iraq. It’s true that we have learned that geography, history, and ethnicity are important factors to consider in making decisions regarding today’s enemies.

We’ve also been reminded of the importance of preparation, of alliances, and the continuing support of our people.

But that does not change the fact that we sometimes must address events in far-away places that endanger our people. Or that we believe in universal values that do not allow us to ignore wholesale human suffering.

Realism? Yes. But also idealism, which is what makes us different from our enemies.

We should also remember that beyond the War on Terror, there are other threats we must meet together that extend well into the future. One way or another, the challenges we face today will recede. Other challenges to our shared interests and security have not been waiting patiently in line for our attention.

Some cannot yet be seen, but it is obvious that our energy needs for example are not going away. Disruptions in energy supplies, sharp price increases and thuggish behavior by energy suppliers are threats to all democracies with growing economies. Also, rapid military build-ups by non-democratic nations should be of concern.

More and more, if things go wrong in disputes that were once considered just regional problems, there will be no “over there” or “over here.” We’ll all be affected. Globalization is not limited to economic matters. As we go through these perilous times, we must keep firmly in mind the things that bind us together, not disagreements.

We’ve been through a lot together, our two nations – and not just in the storied exploits of our parents’ generation. Though there are many moments in British political history from which leaders today can take instruction, there is one in particular that I’ve always admired in the career of Sir Winston Churchill.

It was when Neville Chamberlain died in November 1940. In memorializing in the House of Commons his longtime adversary, Churchill pronounced the bitter controversies put to rest. He said, quote, “History with its flickering lamp stumbles along the trail of the past, trying to reconstruct its scenes, to revive its echoes, and kindle with pale gleams the passion of former days.”

In the end, he reflected, “The only guide to a man is his conscience; the only shield to his memory is the rectitude and sincerity of his actions.” We are “so often mocked by the failure of our hopes and the upsetting of our calculations; but with this shield, however the fates may play, we march always in the ranks of honour.”

Maybe it’s the actor in me that admires this scene so much. It’s a moment that no script-writer could improve upon. I am struck by its spirit, the magnanimity and generosity of the man … the willingness to let old arguments go, and move on to great objectives held in common.

We in this alliance have had our own share of hopes mocked and plans upset. And now it is time to shake off the disappointments, to let go of controversies past, and to press on together toward the great objectives. To ensure security for our people. To be a force for stability in the world. To remain the stalwart friends of freedom.

For our part, we in the United States have never had occasion to doubt the fortitude and faithfulness of the British people. As much as ever, we count ourselves lucky to call the United Kingdom our closest ally, and we are proud to call you our finest friend.

Thank you.

Fred Thompson is an actor and former Senator. His radio commentary airs on the ABC Radio Network and be blogs on The Fred Thompson Report.
11833  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: June 19, 2007, 09:37:52 AM

Roasted Silky Pony, anyone?
11834  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: June 19, 2007, 09:35:23 AM

Fred takes the lead from Rudy.
11835  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Free Speech vs. Islamic Fascism (formerly Buy DANISH!!!) on: June 18, 2007, 11:18:06 PM
I give Rogt credit for his truthfulness, instead of the usual "I support the troops, but....." line most of the left hides behind.
11836  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Free Speech vs. Islamic Fascism (formerly Buy DANISH!!!) on: June 18, 2007, 10:55:48 PM

What do you think America's loss would look like? Do you think the Vietnamese people were well served by our pulling out of Vietnam and abandoning the South to the tender mercies of the NVA? I think you should rent "The Killing Fields" and watch it until it sinks in....
11837  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Help our troops/our cause: on: June 18, 2007, 09:58:55 PM
Traumatic Brain Injury. Most often happening from IEDs. The concussive force causes injury even if there is no externally visible trauma.
11838  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The War on Drugs on: June 18, 2007, 06:07:26 PM
I recently took a class on the investigation of money laundering. One example cited was a S. Fla. drug house where they had so much cash to launder, 2 million dollars rotted into goo in the humidity before the DEA could get a search warrant.
11839  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: June 18, 2007, 05:50:41 PM
Because the tax "intended" for the business gets passed on to the consumer, most seriously affecting those on the lower end of economic status.

Regressive Taxation

Tax burden that falls more heavily on those with low income. Contrast with Progressive Tax, Proportional Taxation.
Example: Sales tax on grocery products is considered regressive taxation because a poor individual must pay the same amount as a wealthy person. Ad Valorem taxes on housing are often regressive because those with low income spend a higher proportion of their income on housing than do the wealthy.
11840  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Free Speech vs. Islamic Fascism (formerly Buy DANISH!!!) on: June 18, 2007, 05:02:34 PM
The majority of the founders of the US were of what religion? The Majority of Americans today are of what religion? Please tell me of any majority muslim nation where religious minorities enjoy the same level of freedoms religious minorities enjoy here.
11841  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: June 18, 2007, 04:53:45 PM
Which harms the poorer would-be consumer the left allegedly cares so much about.....
11842  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Help our troops/our cause: on: June 18, 2007, 04:39:07 PM
I just went through 40 hours of "Crisis Intervention Training" and in the simulations we went through included a vet with PTSD and TBI. The USG hasn't done enough for the veterans of the GWOT. Serious money needs to be put into rebuilding the VA.
11843  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Free Speech vs. Islamic Fascism (formerly Buy DANISH!!!) on: June 18, 2007, 04:08:13 PM

I'd like to hear what you think is fair criticism of islam would be, if any.

I certainly take issue with Islam's treatment of women and gays, which isn't all that different from Christianity's.

That's a good point. I was kind of thinking the same thing the other day while beating a woman for being immodestly dressed in public. I was on my way to the public execution of homosexuals when I saw her.....
11844  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Free Speech vs. Islamic Fascism (formerly Buy DANISH!!!) on: June 17, 2007, 07:52:47 PM

I'd like to hear what you think is fair criticism of islam would be, if any.
11845  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: June 16, 2007, 10:33:16 PM

Michelle Malkin rip's into Paul's "Truther" pandering.
11846  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: June 16, 2007, 10:16:07 PM

He's good on multiple issues, but wrong on the global jihad. He gets into loon territory when he panders to the 9/11 "trufers". I'd vote for Joe Liberman even though he's wrong on so many things because he's understands the global jihad. I used to vote on guns and law and order, now winning this war trumps all.
11847  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: June 16, 2007, 04:30:53 PM

Ron Paul is a loon.
11848  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: June 16, 2007, 03:08:46 PM

All about Israel and it's neighbors.
11849  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: June 16, 2007, 03:02:20 PM

Oh, the irony.....
11850  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: June 16, 2007, 02:23:10 PM
You can't tax a business, big or small. You can try, but all you do is pass on the tax to the consumer. No nation has ever taxed it's self into prosperity.
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