Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for March 9th, 2007

Wish the mainstream media would do their job

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And do it well. From TPMmuckraker:

The Los Angeles Times makes the case that Carol Lam was fired because she “ignored immigration issues,” as the administration has argued.

By contrast, here’s the Justice Deparment making the case for Carol Lam’s handling of broder prosecutions three months before she was fired. Somehow, the letter doesn’t merit a mention in the Times‘ piece.

The LA Times still isn’t quite able to do a good job throughout.

Written by Leisureguy

9 March 2007 at 6:40 pm

Call for impeachment

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Alert Reader passes along Howard Zinn’s clarion call to action:

Courage is in short supply in Washington, D.C. The realities of the Iraq War cry out for the overthrow of a government that is criminally responsible for death, mutilation, torture, humiliation, chaos. But all we hear in the nation’s capital, which is the source of those catastrophes, is a whimper from the Democratic Party, muttering and nattering about “unity” and “bipartisanship,” in a situation that calls for bold action to immediately reverse the present course.

These are the Democrats who were brought to power in November by an electorate fed up with the war, furious at the Bush Administration, and counting on the new majority in Congress to represent the voters. But if sanity is to be restored in our national policies, it can only come about by a great popular upheaval, pushing both Republicans and Democrats into compliance with the national will.

The Declaration of Independence, revered as a document but ignored as a guide to action, needs to be read from pulpits and podiums, on street corners and community radio stations throughout the nation. Its words, forgotten for over two centuries, need to become a call to action for the first time since it was read aloud to crowds in the early excited days of the American Revolution: “Whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it and institute new government.”

The “ends” referred to in the Declaration are the equal right of all to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” True, no government in the history of the nation has been faithful to those ends. Favors for the rich, neglect of the poor, massive violence in the interest of continental and world expansion—that is the persistent record of our government.

Still, there seems to be a special viciousness that accompanies the current assault on human rights, in this country and in the world. We have had repressive governments before, but none has legislated the end of habeas corpus, nor openly supported torture, nor declared the possibility of war without end. No government has so casually ignored the will of the people, affirmed the right of the President to ignore the Constitution, even to set aside laws passed by Congress.

The time is right, then, for a national campaign calling for the impeachment of President Bush and Vice President Cheney. Representative John Conyers, who held extensive hearings and introduced an impeachment resolution when the Republicans controlled Congress, is now head of the House Judiciary Committee and in a position to fight for such a resolution. He has apparently been silenced by his Democratic colleagues who throw out as nuggets of wisdom the usual political palaver about “realism” (while ignoring the realities staring them in the face) and politics being “the art of the possible” (while setting limits on what is possible).

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Leisureguy

9 March 2007 at 6:13 pm

Embracing tyranny

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Glenn Greenwald has an excellent post this morning on the revelations of how much the FBI has abused the already too-lenient guidelines of the Patriot Act—and Salon has fixed their site so that it works with Firefox. So by all means, go read it there. You click on the sponsor logo, and then your screen fills with the sponsor’s ad. Wait a few seconds, and at the upper right will then appear “Enter Salon.” Click that, and Bob’s your uncle.

The article begins:

Multiple media outlets are focusing on the unsurprising story that the FBI seems to have been abusing its powers under the Patriot Act to issue so-called “national security letters” (NSLs), whereby the FBI is empowered to obtain a whole array of privacy-infringing records without any sort of judicial oversight or subpoena process. In particular, the FBI has failed to comply with the legal obligations imposed by Congress, when it re-authorized the Patriot Act in early 2006, which required the FBI to report to Congress on the use of these letters.

That the FBI is abusing its NSL power is entirely unsurprising (more on that below), but the real story here — and it is quite significant — has not even been mentioned by any of these news reports. The only person (that I’ve seen) to have noted the most significant aspect of these revelations is Silent Patriot at Crooks & Liars, who very astutely recalls that the NSL reporting requirements imposed by Congress were precisely the provisions which President Bush expressly proclaimed he could ignore when he issued a “signing statement” as part of the enactment of the Patriot Act’s renewal into law. Put another way, the law which the FBI has now been found to be violating is the very law which George Bush publicly declared he has the power to ignore.

Continue reading.

Written by Leisureguy

9 March 2007 at 7:55 am

Vanilla cream: comfort shave

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After yesterday, I wanted comfort—from anywhere, really, but the morning shave is ideal. So I went with Mama Bear’s Vanilla Cream, a very comforting fragrance that produces a thick, luxurious warm lather that I applied with the Rooney Style 2 Finest: firm, yet gentle. I already felt better. Then the Vision, and I could have done a two-pass shave, but took my time and did three passes: totally smooth face. Alum bar and Pashana aftershave, and I feel much restored. Shaving as therapy. 🙂

Written by Leisureguy

9 March 2007 at 7:37 am

Posted in Shaving

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