May 16, 2009

Obama ‘sellout’ No. 442 – a polluter to police polluters

President Barack Obama has named Igancia Moreno, former corporate environmental counsel for GE, among other things “to be our nation’s environmental litigator, enforcing Superfund issues.

No, this is NOT an example of “it takes a thief to catch a thief.”

And, since this is Obama’s MO, and people who believed nine months ago that he was a real progressive were idiots then, despite their name-calling against me, technically, it isn’t a “sellout.” Hence the scare quotes.

We’ll NEVER get real reform, let alone national coverage. Yesterday I and thousands of other bloggers noted how the American Hospital Association Pre

We’ll NEVER get real reform, let alone national coverage.

Yesterday I and thousands of other bloggers noted how the American Hospital Association President just punked Obama on Obama’s claims on how much in annual cost savings hospitals would provide under healthcare reform.

Well, it turns out there’s even more to the situation. White House staff “aren’t even sure whether or not Obama misspoke on the AHA’s original statement.
Nancy-Ann DeParle, director of the White House Office of Health Reform, said “the president misspoke” on Monday and again on Wednesday when he described the industry’s commitment in similar terms. After providing that account, Ms. DeParle called back about an hour later on Thursday and said: “I don’t think the president misspoke. His remarks correctly and accurately described the industry’s commitment.”

Here’s my guess.

DeParle spoked correctly the first time. But, Obama can’t admit he goofed this badly, first, and second, he still hopes he can browbeat the AHA. Alternative suggestion is he knew from the start he was misstating the AHA position and was determined to use this as a world-moving lever.

In either case, he had to tell DeParle she needed to go out and “respeak.” And she did.

In the first case, we have a president flying by the seat of his pants. Wunderbar.

In the second place, we have a president who thinks that, without the threat of legislation or regulation, he can beat down one of the top players in the medical-industrial complex. And I wouldn’t bet on that.

And, I haven’t even touched the issue of Obama’s Senate water-carrier, Max Baucus, ruling single-payer healthcare off the table.

At your grocer: Killer pot pies

No, really. Your pot pie, TV dinner or frozen pizza may be LOADED with E coli, coliform or other nasties. And, guess what? Big Ag, in conjunction with major grocers, wants you to take care of your own food safety if you eat this stuff.

Seriously. Banquet wants you to use an oven thermometer on its pot pies rather than it have to do the work of figuring out which of 25 or so ingredients (including spices that can carry salmonella) is the culprit if you get sick.

And, yes, I said “spices that can carry salmonella.” Nearly 10 percent of them. Read the full story.

Congress Party wins India elections

And reportedly has increased its parliamentary plurality to close to a majority.

All good news.

Given that Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence seems to have some degree of connection to the Mumbai attacks of a few months, if India’s Bharatiya Janata Party Hindu nationalist party had gained a plurality, the international situation probably would have tensed up more.

And, just 11 votes short of an outright majority, Congress, while it will need some coalition with minor parties, won’t need to do so with Communists, meaning it can go ahead with any plans for further economic reform. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had already started some such efforts.

Greenwald takes Obama to the woodshed on military commissions

In what’s a long blog even for him, Glenn Greenwald hits President Barack Obama with “everything but the kitchen sink over his lies on military commissions.

Lies? Yes. Contradicting some of his clearest campaign statements to use either civilian courts or traditional military trials, whichever were applicable.

Lies so egregious that Jake Tapper traps Obama press secretary Robert Gibbs into spluttering nonsense when he tries to defend his boss.

But, tell me, Glenn, what will you do three years from now? Will you advocate for the left-hand side of the duopoly, or will you use your platform to tout third-party alternatives?

Obama the healthcare sellout

David Sirota “nails him, but kindly, as an “enigma” on the issue, especially given his one-time support of single-payer national healthcare.

C’mon, David, you know better. He’s Just.Another.Politician.™

Meanwhile, I have to agree with David Brooks: some of Obama’s proposed ideas for healthcare savings have no guarantee or close to it, and some of those that do, won’t pan out for years.

And, since the president of the American Hospital Association just punked Obama on a previously-written agreement to hold down health care costs, we’ll probably wind up with a “healthcare reform” bill at least as watered down as the climate change bill will be.

You know the answer — vote Green.

May 15, 2009

Metered newspaper charges?

Amongst all the different ways to try to get people to pony up for reading newspapers, I hadn’t heard anybody mention the option “the New York Times is considering.

Basically, it’s something similar to your cell phone bill, or the way your ISP bill may have been in the past, or may still be today.

You buy an account with a limit, except in this case the limit will be pageviews or online words rather than minutes. As the story notes, setting the base rate price is key. If you set it right, and get enough people reading, you can charge pretty high “extra” fees.

Of course, the next question is what goes behind the paywall. Times Select flopped with its columnists, which was probably embarrassing to them.

I’d start with the Mag and the Review of Books. Narrowly focused audiences, more dedicated than average readers, even average Times readers.

Pop Ev Psych takes yet another hit

It turns out that the brawny male warrior DOESN’T always get the girl. And, the reason why that warrior doesn’t is grounded in cultural, not hereditary, issues.

Abu Ghraib 2.0 pix ARE available

Read this Telegraph story to see one of them, likely one of the milder ones.
One picture showed a prisoner hung up upside down while another showed a naked man smeared in excrement standing in a corridor with a guard standing menacingly in front of him. Another prisoner is handcuffed to the window frame of his cell with underpants pulled over his head.

Others yet to be released reportedly show military guards threatening to sexually assault a detainee with a broomstick and hooded prisoners on transport planes with Playboy magazines opened to pictures of nude women on their laps.

So, note to our current Torture Enabler in Chief at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. -- the cat's at least partway out of the bag already.

And, regular readers know the bottom-line answer: Vote Green. Stop enabling the duopoly, and stop enabling the torture enablers.

Dumb crime of the week

Do NOT take a White House tour if you’re on a deportation list.

Monkey do bad, monkey do different

Monkeys, going below even great apes on the primate "ladder," can learn from their mistakes.

Time to further adjust the bar on learning and other issues that do NOT differentiate H. sapiens from “mere animals.”

Second car warranty folks get sued

One question: why in the hell did the Federal Trade Commission take so long to do this?

May 14, 2009

NH Gov wants gays to settle for marriage light

Frankly, with is distinction between secular and religious marriages, I thought the New Hampshire House had done plenty, but Gov. John Lynch thinks otherwise.

Per the governor’s official website, it sou8nds like Lynch wants fraternal groups, even if not explicitly religious, to be able to discriminate against gay spouses.

And, he wants there to be a one-year hiatus between the end of gay civil unions in New Hampshire and the start of gay marriage.

I hope the state Lege refuses to go along with his proposed additional language, then overrides the veto he promised.

Pelosi still boo-hoos about torture briefings

Whether or not the CIA briefed Pelosi on waterboarding in 2002, it’s a flat-out lie to claim “Congress was incapable of stopping it.

All you had to do was speak up. Constitutional protections of Members of Congress while in their official duties legally trump any Executive Branch “national security” claim. And, it would have been fun to see such a case go to court just to establish that fact at trial.

Besides, Miss Nancy, Miss Passive Pelosi™, you DID know about waterboarding in 2003. And you still kept your pseudo-liberal mouth shut.

Jeff Jarvis sucks part 2

To refute some of Jarvis’ nonsense:

The “50 of 300” that produce content in the newsroom only includes writers, but not copy editors, proofreaders, fact checkers, among others. So, if you want drivel, or perhaps libel, fine, get rid of all the other 250. Blogs don’t get sued not so much because blogging is considered opinion but because most of them aren’t financially worth suing.

Google sells making money, not “performance,” just like any other big biz.

Per the “Dell sucks” line from Jeff Jarvis’ “What Would Google Do” ass-kissing of Page and Brin, “Jeff Jarvis sucks.”

“Think like capitalists”? God, if this isn’t stupid. Since, until a decade ago, newspapers had the highest profit margin of about any business in the country, they’ve long been thinking like capitalists. Sure, they need to think like capitalists in new ways, but that’s entirely different.

As for thinking like capitalists, if Jarvis weren’t:
A. A university prof;
B. Probably paid for his jet-setting to Davos, etc.;
C. Possibly paid for “What Would Google Do”; he wouldn’t be writing this blog.

What effing bullshit.

Newspapers can’t be about control? That’s why you’ve had alt-weeklies, minority/ethnic weeklies, etc. for decades. The seven-day daily, outside official chattering classes (of whom Jarvis is simply part of the online equivalent) have long not been about control.

Carbon tax alive and well

Of course, the one place it’s alive and well is north of the U.S. border, but, it IS alive and well in British Columbia.

The Liberal Party (Canada’s rough equivalent of U.S. neolib Democrats) and Premier Gordon Campbell proposed a carbon tax in March 2008. Despite the strongly liberal New Democratic Party making a cheap recession-based election ploy of running AGAINST the tax as too regressive, the Liberals not only stayed in power, but in elections May 12, expanded their provincial power by six seats.

Most Canadian enviro groups came out strongly against the NDP, if not in explicit favor of the Liberals, easily seeing through NDP grandstanding.

That said, it’s surely true the amount of the tax is too low. But, it’s a start, and it’s still in place.

We’ll see if Team Obama’s generally timid environmental team takes note.

Jeff Jarvis sucks

Since Amazon won't let me type that as a book review title, I'll do it here, taking a page from his "Dell sucks" blog post that he mentions in his new book, "What Would Google Do"?

Here's the deal with the book, a one-star turkey.

This books is basically nothing but uncritical Google-olotry, as shown by the errors Jarvis makes in just his seven introduction pages.

1. Google's alleged customer service? Google's Blogger blogs get no more customer service than Microslob offers on Outlook/Outlook Express.

2. Related to that, through things such as Chrome, Google Docs, cloud computing, Google IS the new Microslob in many ways. Jarvis completely ignores that.

3. Related to THAT, Jarvis laughably claims that Google AdSense lets you be "part of Google." Jeez, just how much has Google brainwashed him? Instead, Google's ever more closely monitoring his Google searches, etc., and targeting ads to that end. (Do a fake Google search at least once a week to screw Google up, is my suggestion.)

4. Jarvis ignores the multiplicity of Google business flops of the past, which are well-documented elsewhere.

Beyond that, Jarvis is a name-dropper, etc. Read other one- and two-star reviewers for more.

Obama blocking torture pix connected to A-stan general?

Andrew Sullivan makes the charge that President Obama’s refusal to release the Abu Ghraib 2.0 pix is related to new U.S. commander in Afghanistan Stanley McChrystal’s aiding and abetting of torture in Iraq.

If you want more than Sully’s summary, visit the full story in Esquire.

Given that McChrystal also has connections to the Pat Tillman death coverup, this is one of the clearest signs yet that, in foreign policy and American imperialism, Obama is Just.Another.Politician.™

U.S. has most unenvironmental consumers

More news from the “duh, shock me,” department — from people surveyed in 18 countries by National Geographic, U.S. consumers were the WORST in making environmentally conscious consumer decisions.

And folks, that’s why many Americans listen to GOP ’wingers’ global-warming denialism. It’s why many Americans are titty babies when gasoline goes up a nickel a gallon. It’s why many Americans not only believed Dick Cheney that conservation isn’t an energy policy, but many don’t even know how to spell “conservation.”

And, you know what?

Not all those people are registered Republicans, either.

From the ‘GOP in the wilderness’ department

Whatever genius inside the Republican National Committee had the bright idea that renaming the Democrats as the “Democrat Socialist Party” reflects why the Republicans remain doomed to wander in the wilderness.

And, actually, that’s a shame. The Democrats need more of a challenge of any sort, especially since most “progressives” refuse to initiate that challenge themselves by voting Green, Socialist (real Socialist) or other similar options.

Instead, the more benignly smiling half of the two-party duopoly will get more of a head start on getting its 2010, and 2012, electoral success ticket punched.

May 13, 2009

Royce West gets another prize from Texas Lege

The Texas House has officially OKed a UNT law school in Dallas. The Senate will surely follow suit.

And? Do we need that many more lawyers? A fair percentage of law school grads either never practice law, or leave early. Yes, Big D is the nation’s largest metro area without a law school, but is that a crime?

And, if this eventually comes to fruition, will Royce leave his private practice to become first chancellor?

And, in the latest Obama torture sellout …

President Barack Obama has officially decided to fight the release of torture pictures whose release the ACLU has won in court.

And, the ACLU is calling him out on it:
“The decision to not release the photographs makes a mockery of President Obama's promise of transparency and accountability,” said ACLU attorney Amrit Singh, who argued and won the case in front of the 2nd U.S. Court of Appeals in New York. “It is essential that these photographs be released so that the public can examine for itself the full scale and scope of prisoner abuse that was conducted in its name.”

You know the answer to this – vote Green in 2012.

EU slaps Intel with largest fine ever

The European Union’s €1 billion-plus fine of Intel, (nearly $1.5 billion) for illegal, monopolistic sales practices beats its Microsoft fine by more than €100 million.

It’s another sign, here in the 21st century, that the EU is serious about restraining big businesses’ attempts to avoid regulation in the post-WTO world.

Because the Eurozone has a larger population than the U.S., a more aggressive attitude on regulation, AND (at least for now, see poll in right-hand rail) a larger economy than America, these actions will continue to happen, and continue to mean something.

George Vaillant 42 years later

George Vaillant, a psychology professor at Harvard, inherited what was then the Grant Project. Under Vaillant’s hands, it became the largest- and longest-ever longitudinal study of human psychology.

Atlantic Monthly has an update on Vaillant’s work after 42 years.

Although not planned as such, the survey has many invaluable spinoffs, including seeing how manic-depressive or bipolar illness was eventually distinguished from schizophrenia, the state of development in psychology in general, information on human happiness and its whys, and more.

The more includes it becoming an invaluable longitudinal source on drug and alcohol addiction and recovery.

Apropos of that and other things, the Atlantic story has a couple of good rhetorical questions:
Can the good life be accounted for with a set of rules? Can we even say who has a “good life” in any broad way?

Probably not, unless, riffing on Thomas Szasz, we rely on groupthink societal definitions of what the “good life” is. Or, what “happiness” is, for that matter.

That said, Vaillant himself developed some intriguing findings about “positive” emotions:
In fact, Vaillant went on, positive emotions make us more vulnerable than negative ones. One reason is that they’re future-oriented. Fear and sadness have immediate payoffs—protecting us from attack or attracting resources at times of distress. Gratitude and joy, over time, will yield better health and deeper connections—but in the short term actually put us at risk. That’s because, while negative emotions tend to be insulating, positive emotions expose us to the common elements of rejection and heartbreak.

To illustrate his point, he told a story about one of his “prize” Grant Study men, a doctor and well-loved husband. “On his 70th birthday,” Vaillant said, “when he retired from the faculty of medicine, his wife got hold of his patient list and secretly wrote to many of his longest-running patients, ‘Would you write a letter of appreciation?’ And back came 100 single-spaced, desperately loving letters—often with pictures attached. And she put them in a lovely presentation box covered with Thai silk, and gave it to him.” Eight years later, Vaillant interviewed the man, who proudly pulled the box down from his shelf. “George, I don’t know what you’re going to make of this,” the man said, as he began to cry, “but I’ve never read it.” “It’s very hard,” Vaillant said, “for most of us to tolerate being loved.”

I will vouch for that indeed.

Of course, so could Vaillant.

He got married three times, and after six years with Wife No. 3, went back to Wife No. 2.

Gay marriage - is NY state No. 6?

It could well be, after the New York Assembly strongly approved a gay marriage bill, now headed to the state Senate. (Gov. David Patterson has given no inclination he would veto such a bill.)

Loaded guns in Natl Parks – ANOTHER Dem sellout

Fully half of voting Senate Democrats voted YES on a bill amendment to allow loaded guns in our National Parks. The list includes alleged liberals such as Feingold, Klobuchar, Kohl, Leahy, and Wyden, plus pseudo-social;ist Bernie Sanders. One Republican, Lamar Alexander, voted No.

On Sanders, there are no gun manufacturers inside national parks, and the National Park Service system, even at lower levels of enshrinement, is minimal in Vermont.

Geez, when an all-Democratic Administration makes Canada look attractive …

Transgender and marriage

As more and more states approve gay marriage, Jennifer Finley Boylan, a marriage male-to-female transgender, has some very interesting food for thought.

Is Team Obama behind CIA torture leaks?

Behind all the commotion by Congressional Democrats that the CIA is deliberately leaking its take on 2002-03 briefings of Congressional Democrats on torture and torture-lite, otherwise known as “enhanced interrogation techniques,” Wisconsin Sen. Russ Feingold is looking even further:
Intelligence Committee member Feingoldsaid it appears that “members of the committee or their staff were not in any way involved in [the release of the document]. It appears to come from the executive branch itself. ... I think it’s unbelievable.”

Would be a hard form of “pushback” against torture investigation, wouldn’t it? “Chicago politics”?

Yes and yes to the two rhetorical questions, therefore, Feingold could be quite right.

May 12, 2009

Ventura ready to waterboard Cheney

On Larry King Live, Jesse Ventura said that if you give him a waterboarding set-up, and Dick Cheney, an hour later, he’ll have Uncle Fester confessing to the Sharon Tate murder. (The implicit equating of Darth Cheney and Charlie Manson is funny.)

And, Ventura knows. As a Navy SEAL, he pointed out that he was waterboarded as part of SERE training. He also points out that it isn’t “simulated” anything and can in fact kill someone.

Obama the torture-enabler continues

Glenn Greenwald has the latest details on how the Obama Administration is continuing threats to cut off U.S. intelligence sharing with the British if the U.K. legal system continues to investigate the Guantanamo Bay torture claims of Binyam Mohamed.

And, Greenwald makes clear this is not simply Team Obama repeating BushCo threats. This is all fresh and new Obama threats. To make that more clear, Greenwald has a link to a British government letter (PDF, see pages 6-9) that this is all new threats.

The Washington Times has details of the threats. It seems clear, as Glenn says, that the British government is perfectly OK with being “shackled” by an outside government, hence the lack of protests on the side of Her Majesty’s Government as led by Gordon Brown.

Again, don’t vote for Obama in 2012; vote Green.

When will Obama stop firing Army vets like this?

Lt. Daniel Choi, who is gay, has an open letter on CNN decrying Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.

And yes, he and others are fired. Don’t call it “discharged.”

And, any private non-religious employer would get sued for this.

Choi will be on CNN AC360 tonight (May 12) at 10 p.m. Eastern.

Show us the Abu Ghraib 2.0 pix – up pressure on Obama

The American Civil Liberties Union has won all the lawsuits to get both private and official military pictures of Abu Ghraib released to the public, but at least two Senators are resisting.

Mr. Former CIA Lindsey Graham and Joementum Lieberman are urging President Barack Obama to find some way to block the release of hundreds of pictures, claiming it could infuriate Muslim opinion.

Why?
“These photographs provide visual proof that prisoner abuse by U.S. personnel was not aberrational but widespread, reaching far beyond the walls of Abu Ghraib,” said Amrit Singh, an ACLU lawyer.

Releasing them would also increase pressure on Obama to change course on “looking forward” on torture, which means that, IMO, there’s good odds Obama will try to find a way to do just what Lieberman and Graham want.

Besides, American arrests of Muslim journalists, complete with no post-release apologies, has poisoned the well plenty.

Biofuels flunk their own stress test

Time notes that corn-based ethanol, etc., were getting their own stress tests at the same time as banks. And, doing just as badly, if not worse.

Big Ag now has government handwriting on the wall that ethanol, in particular, is carbon-negative compared to gasoline, and biodiesel isn’t very much carbon-positive compared to petroleum diesel.

And, this doesn’t count land-use issues.

Dick Cheney famously, or infamously, disparaged conservation.

The Obama Administration hasn’t done that, but it has yet to issue an explicit statement in favor of energy conservation. Solar and wind for electricity are good, as are alt-fuels if carbon positive, but they can’t do all the lifting. Americans need to do more to use less electricity and less fuel. It’s that simple.

Polar bears and the worst Cabinet member not named Geithner

Last Friday, by accepting very narrow, weak BushCo defenses of polar bears, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar officially showed himself the worst Obama Cabinet member not named Tim Geithner.

I both laughed and shook my head five months ago when Sierra Club and the other Gang Green enviro groups lauded Salazar’s nomination, knowing how full of crap they were.

Specifically, Salazar is wrong that the Endangered Species Act was specifically intended to be limited to local species problems only. With animals such as bald eagles and peregrine falcons, and a universal pollutant such as DDT, his argument is directly undercut, in fact.

So, Time, in the linked story, is also wrong in supporting his argument.

Perry and Hutchison tied in polls – if she runs

As of May 7, Rasmussen Reports had the Texas governor and his possible 2010 GOP primary challenger in a dead heat

But the folks at Rasmussen must not read The Hill, where more than two weeks ago Sen. John Cornyn noted, as I blogged, that Kay Bailey Cheerleader might be getting cold feet.

Also noteworthy that 20 percent of the polled are either undecided or would like somebody else, and both of the two have unfavorables of above 25 percent.

Dems less likely to understand cap-and-trade than GOP

Want more proof, or concern, that the Democratic Party, all in all, may really niot be that progressive?

According to Rasmussen Reports, Democrats are less likely than Republicans or independents to understand what carbon dioxide cap-and-trade proposals are.

China outpacing U.S. on cleaner coal power

Yes, China still uses a lot more coal than we do, and it has a lot of highly inefficient power plants that aren’t that old. But, when newly-built, or being-built, electric power plants are compared head to head, it looks like America needs to practice what it preaches on air pollution.

Hell, next the Chinese will be beating us on conservation.

May 11, 2009

Pelosi a 2003 sellout on waterboarding

Speaker of the House Miss Nancy now admits she WAS briefed on torture way back in 2003, but, shades of Jay Rockefeller, thought it was necessary to respect and follow “appropriate” legislative channels, exactly the response upon which BushCo counted.

Pelosi still denies she or any staff were briefed back in 2002, but that’s splitting hairs. She knew, early on, about specific techniques, and refused to speak up.

Besides, contrary to her respect for “appropriate” channels (really meaning her terror of leaking a “state secret”) Congressional immunity would, Constitutionally, trump any “state secrets” executive claim.

Of course, Sellout Nancy wasn’t alone. I already compared her to Jay Rockefeller. Here’s more:
Steve Elmendorf, who served as chief of staff to former Minority Leader Dick Gephardt (D-Mo.), said that coming so soon after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, it would have been difficult politically for Pelosi to do more to protest interrogation techniques the Bush administration was using.

“You have to remember, in the 2002 period, the whole atmospherics, it was all about scaring people every day,” said Elmendorf. “People were legitimately concerned that we were going to be attacked again, and there was a constant drumbeat coming from the Bush administration of, ‘Bad things could happen, bad things could happen.’ Nobody wants it to happen on their watch.”

Sellout Democrats. Why I vote Green.

McKiernan gets early boot from A-stan – why?

Gen. David McKiernan is having his tour as U.S. commander in Afghanistan ended 13 months early from a normal two-year tour of duty.

Why?

Team Obama won’t tell us.

My guess is McKiernan is skeptical enough about a “surge” in A-stan, and said so, to get on the outs.

Bob Casey has wary eye on Arlen Specter

Pennsylvania’s senior Democratic U.S. Senator says party bigwigs shouldn’t cut Sen. Arlen Specter a blank check, literally or otherwise in or for next year’s Democratic primary battle. Smart man.

Don’t hold your breath on $2 tril in health insurance savings

As this news analysis story points out , when have insurers ever delivered on something like this?

Update:

Ezra Klein is also skeptical, saying Obama and insurers are using each other for posturing points.

Klein says Paul Krugman is excited, which might be overstating things, but he does seem to be giving scant attention to the gift horse’s mouth, even while noting the Clinton-era backstory.

Gee, surprise, not just with health insurers, but with Obama on that one.

Your SCOTUS short list?

Chuck Todd provides his dish, saying Director of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano and Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm are on the short list.

I don’t totally believe that. Obama at least gives the appearance of thinking far enough ahead not to have appointed Napolitano for so short-term a position. Plus, the “conservative terrorist” paper that DHS recently released would spell rough sailing in the Senate.

Diane Wood of the 7th Circuit Court would fit the bill of a Friend of Barack and of an appellate judge, as, of course, would Sonia Sotomayor. But, at 58, Wood’s the oldest.

Granholm? Might be the “gray” type that Obama favors.

Has US used white phosphorus AGAIN?

After the U.S. Army was accused of using Willy Pete in the battle for Fallujah, Iraq, and, as an offensive weapon, not just a battlefield illumination, it strenuously denied it. Well, now, it faces the same allegation, only in Afghanistan this time.

Sure, Afghan doctors could be lying about “strange burns,” but why?

And, we should also remember, vis-à-vis the Army, the old “fool me once” vs. “fool me twice” issue, especially when the Army claims the Taliban could have used the WP.

Arlen makes a Specter of himself

New York Times op-ed editor Gail Collins tells me what I’ve missed in Arlen Specter’s antics in his brief time as the Senate’s newest Democrat.

If Majority Leader Harry Reid had had any brains, he would have thrown Specter back in the water like a fish below the legal size limit.

John Edwards didn’t need sabotage help, but …

His own campaign, at the start of 2008, once they realized his affair issues might just be real, were prepared to deliberately drive him in the ditch if he took the Democratic primary lead.

At least some people knew what was best for the country and the party.

May 10, 2009

Back from vacation -- 11 Cali days

that's why my posting has been so light.

Got some great pics at Yosemite, good ones at Kings Canyon and Big Sur and North Coast. Will have them edited, and a few posted, by end of week.

How fast will Obama walk with EPA power on global warming?

Philip Radford worries he’ll pretend to walk fast while demanding Congress do the dirty work, which could wind up being very slow.