Court Of Impeachment And War Crimes: Impeach Bush and Cheney; Dump The Speaker...and other Congressional News and Views
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Imbush Peach

An interview with Naomi Wolf about the 10 steps from democracy to dictatorship!

Stop The Spying Now

Stop the Spying!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Impeach Bush and Cheney; Dump The Speaker...and other Congressional News and Views


“It Will All Be Over Soon And The Pain Will Be Gone”.
That’s What A 2o Year Old American “Shrapnel-Shredded, Gut-Shot Soldier
Said A Couple Of Weeks
Ago In Iraq.
He’s Home For Christmas
In A Decorated Box!

That’s The Same Type Of Things Impeachment Opponents Say!

The Constitution isn't a security blanket. If we want to minimize the number of terrorist attacks on American citizens or US institutions; we should stop using war as an implement of foreign policy. As Noam Chomsky says, "The best way to stop terrorism; is stop committing it." That's good advice. We ought to put that on a billboard in front of the White House so the occupants can mull it over every day on their way to work.

Rep. Robert Wexler Fri Dec 14, 1:02 PM ET
http://news.yahoo.com/s/huffpost/20071214/cm_huffpost/076846

I was serving in Congress and on the Judiciary Committee for the ridiculous and politically motivated impeachment hearings of President Clinton. During that witch hunt Newt Gingrich, Tom DeLay, and Ken Starr wasted a year and a half on investigations and hearings about President Clinton's personal relations. However, this attempted coup d'etat by Republicans against President Clinton was not and should not be the standard of impeachment that was enshrined by the Founders in our Constitution.

First, impeachment hearings are only proper when significant allegations exist that the President or Vice-President, or others civil officers, committed actions - within their official duties - that constitute 'High Crimes and Misdemeanors.' The allegations against Clinton - involving a personal affair - never reached this threshold. The serious charges against Cheney involve alleged crimes that are central to his duties of Vice-President; namely war and peace, the widespread violations of civil liberties, and the security of the United States and our covert agents.

Unlike the show trial put on by Republicans against President Clinton, a proper impeachment hearing would involve a fair and objective presentation of the facts without hyperbole or political gamesmanship. The hard evidence that is presented at the hearings will be judged fully both by Congress and the American people. The evidence alone will determine the outcome, and if it is determined that Vice President Cheney committed "High Crimes and Misdemeanors" he should be properly impeached and put on trial before the Senate.

After the Democratic Party regained control of Congress, many - myself included - thought that it might be possible to meet President Bush half-way on the large issues facing our nation. Unfortunately, Bush has been nothing more than an ideological obstacle. He has vetoed stem cell research. He has vetoed efforts to bring our troops home from Iraq. He vetoed children's health care. So, the idea that we are somehow inhibiting Congress from passing our agenda by holding impeachment hearings - unfortunately - is a false argument.

Instead, I believe that we can both live up to our Constitutional obligation by holding hearings and pass a Democratic agenda. If President Bush perceives that the Democratic Congress is weak and unwilling to aggressively push our agenda - he will continue to veto legislation, such as children's health care - that is supported by a majority of Americans. The only way to move a progressive Democratic agenda is by acting through strength and following through on our core principles. A Congress willing to stand up to the abuses of the Bush Administration through impeachment hearings will demonstrate a strength of will that will more likely convince Bush to accommodate on issues such as Iraq, health care, and energy and environmental issues.

Today, I was joined by two other members of the House Judiciary Committee, Reps. Luis Gutierrez and Tammy Baldwin, who penned an online editorial with me calling for these impeachment hearings. In support of this effort I am releasing a call to action on video and launched WexlerWantsHearings.com. The full op-ed from the three Judiciary Committee Members can be read at this site. If we can get 50,000 or even more people to sign up in support of this effort I will report back to each and every Democratic colleague of mine the true power that exists behind this movement.

Kucinich May Yet Carry The Day On Impeachment

http://current.com/items/88792459_kucinich_may_yet_carry_the_day_on_impeachment

http://www.thenation.com/blogs/thebeat?bid=1&pid=259835

Will Pelosi & Conyers stop call for Cheney impeachment?

http://aggravated.blogspot.com/2007/12/will-pelosi-conyers-stop-call-for.html
Local ACLU calls for impeachment… again
By Kevin Uhrich

http://www.pasadenaweekly.com/article.php?id=5451&IssueNum=102
http://www.pasadenaweekly.com/article.php?id=5451&Issue...


If history really does repeat itself, George W. Bush is in big trouble.
Even before reports that the CIA destroyed two videotapes of prisoners supposedly being questioned under torture sparked outcry in Congress and the media, 40 members of the ACLU of Southern California’s board of directors had voted unanimously, with one abstention, to support the start of impeachment proceedings against Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney.

Speaking Friday to KPFK radio, former ACLU of Southern California President Stephen Rohde said the vote mirrored similar action taken in 1971 to impeach former President Richard Nixon. Nixon resigned in 1974, before Congress could impeach him for his role in the Watergate burglary and cover-up. By that time, however, ACLU chapters in other major cities and the national chapter in Washington had followed the SoCal chapter’s lead and called for Nixon’s impeachment.

“Our hope is by being the first affiliate to call for impeachment we will encourage other affiliates to join us and seek to have the national board consider the issue next year,” said Rohde, a founding member of the Pasadena-based Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace.

A bill in the House to impeach Cheney that was introduced by Democratic presidential candidate and Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich has not received the support of his party and last month was sent to committee to avoid a floor debate.

Another similarity to questions of impeachment in the 1970s and now is the role played by electronic recordings. In 1973, tapes of presidential conversations in the Oval Office that were turned over to investigators in the Watergate case were missing 18 minutes of discussion. In the case of the missing interrogation footage, CIA Director Michael Hayden has said the CIA destroyed the tapes “only after it was determined they were no longer of intelligence value and not relevant to any internal, legislative or judicial inquiries,” according to a CNN report.

Rohde said the local ACLU is preparing an extensive list of high crimes and misdemeanors — impeachable offenses — they say have been committed by Bush and Cheney, among them torture and extraordinary rendition, misleading the nation into war with Iraq by manipulating intelligence and the use of surveillance tactics that violate Fourth Amendment protections.

http://impeachforpeace.org/impeach_bush_blog/?p=4243

http://notawellbehavedwoman.blogspot.com/2007/12/calls-for-cheney-impeachment.html

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2007/12/15/63836/014

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2007/12/15/980/97625

.. let Facts be submitted to a candid World. The Declaration of Independence (1776)

I used to think that Cindy Sheehan had gone a grudge too far, when she announced that she was going to challenge Nancy Pelosi for Pelosi's House seat.

Why, Nancy Pelosi is the first woman Speaker of the House in U.S. history!

But then, I remembered that Sandra Day O'Connor had been the first woman Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. And O'Connor betrayed the Constitution every bit as much as Pelosi has betrayed the Congress. The difference is that O'Connor could never repair the damage she did. Nor, rescue her good name from the gutter of history.

Nancy, on the other hand, can.

Let me explain:

Now there have been a few quislings and collaborators. Harry Reid has been complicit in the current, slow coup d'etat on the Constitution, as well, refusing to use his powers as the Senate's majority leader. Allowing the Republicans the "courtesy" of endless pro forma filibusters.

What's a pro forma filibuster?

Well, a filibuster relates to the Senate's former DC Comics title of "Greatest Deliberative Body in the World." It used to mean that if everybody in the Justice League wanted to storm Luthor's stronghold, and Braniac thought that it was a bad idea, he could hold the floor by a parliamentary maneuver (the "rules" of debating, the basis of Roberts' Rules of Order, based on General Robert's years as Sergeant at Arms of the House) as long as a majority of members didn't vote for "cloture" -- a fancy word for "SHUT UP."

Until Batman can assemble a majority of the Justice League to vote for cloture, Brainiac will continue to babble on, reciting the names of every person in the Metropolis phone book.

In the old days, reading passages from phone books was a popular tactic. Why? Because, well, the filibuster required that you actually TALK, to hold the floor. Some of the filibusters went on for long hours, like dance marathons. And, sometimes they worked. They were a last ditch effort. Southern senators used them successfully for years to block civil rights legislation.

It's what Jimmy Stewart does in Mr. Smith Goes To Washington to stop the passage of a land-grab bill.

Well, the Senate got tired of the long-windathons (although if you watch CSPAN 2, you'll notice that there are a lot of times when the senate is pretty empty), and agreed if somebody SAID they were going to filibuster, they'd table the bill and move on to the next one (so as not to stop the business of the Senate, which is now a year 'round affair).

That's the pro forma part. They no longer have to talk to hold the floor. They just have to say they will. Harry Reid is the Majority Leader, and he COULD force them to actually have to talk. The number of bills currently being "filibustered" by the GOP is ... well, it's far and away the greatest number of filibusters recorded in Senate history.

And this from the party that was trying to do AWAY with the filibuster a mere two years ago. Funny how losing an election changes your perspective. When you're the minority party, you don't want stuff shoved up your rectum like a New York police baton in quite the same way you were breathlessly screaming for when you were in the majority.

It is a peculiarity of human psychology.

So, part of it is Harry Reid's fault, for not exercising the power that is his alone to exercise. The buck stops squarely at Harry Reid's desk for not confronting a GOP that has laid itself on the train tracks, and defies the Republic to move forward. But the fault lies with Harry Reid, as majority leader for refusing to rein in a party that is flouting the will of We, the People. He has the unquestioned power to do so.

But the buck doesn't stop with Harry Reid.

Nancy Pelosi has a special responsibility in all of this. From a document on YOUR site, house.gov:

.. it is their Right, it is their Duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future Security. Such has been the patient Sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the Necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government.

Nancy:

Being the "first" does not relieve you of responsibility for your actions in office, or, more importantly, of your INACTIONS in office.

As we allow an increasingly petulant, out-of-control presidency, as we allow Bush and his minions and cronies to flaunt and to flout the law, ALL law becomes irrelevant. When the leaders do not obey the laws, those that they lead do not obey the laws, either.

As the Congress of the United States of America was always the governing body of these united states, even when we were the united colonies, it is clear from the intent of the framers that congress was always intended as the first among equals. Constitution, Article I. In the final analysis, the only power in this government, the final check, the ultimate power granted by the ultimate power -- the legitimate vote of We, the People -- is the power of the purse.

You're a woman. You know about purses.

And rather than use that power to demand answers on this war, on the depredations of what, increasingly seems like a deranged, if not debauched maladministration of death, bribery, corruption, and plunder, without the accountability that CONGRESS is given that ultimate power FOR, you do nothing.

You have no right to consider your political career, Ms. Pelosi. You have no right to consider what the opinion polls might say. You were elected to make hard decisions.

You and you alone have the power of the purse, as the Speaker. Ultimately, your fellow Democrats could remove you, granted, and elect a new Speaker. But, you have an obligation to, if necessary, fall on your sword and refuse to allow a dime to be spent until and unless YOUR government officials appear before YOU.

They are not "Administration" employees, they are GOVERNMENT employees, and YOU control their salaries, e.g. they work for YOU.

Did you know that at the time of the Civil War and for many years afterwards, cabinet officers were considered directly answerable to congress, and only marginally under presidential control in the administration of the country?

None of the founders, none of the framers would have stood for the inhabitants of the White House openly sneering at congressional subpoenas. Few administrations would have taken it to the level of subpoena. A mere request would have been necessary.

You and you alone are responsible for reminding the president that we are a nation of laws and not of men.

And, having the power, and having the duty, as the highest ranking constitutional officer charged with defending the Constitution, you have to stop the purse, and impeach the Vice President and the President of the United States (or, rather, those having grabbed the offices aforementioned).

You do not have the right to fiddle while Rome burns. The number and magnitude of offenses multiplies, and you behave like a lunatic mother forgiving "little precious" of every sin, until he kills some other child, and you protect him still. There is no rational excuse for not initiating impeachment, as the constitution shreds under repeated, organized and deliberate assault.

What we have, Madame Speaker, is a gang of sadists and bullies. And people are dying each and every day in a war that we were lied into, and that they refuse to end, even though "mission accomplished" was declared ... how many years ago?

We cannot fail to act. You have no right NOT to act. You do not own your office. You hold your office in trust, as all governmental offices are held in trust.

Clearly Messrs. Bush and Cheney have betrayed THEIR trust. You cannot deny that by any evasion, sophistry or rhetorical stunt. That is indisputable fact. Therefore, you CANNOT remain inert. You cannot be held to a campaign promise, or any other reason not to immediately initiate impeachment proceedings against the "hangin' party" that managed to "get" Saddam Hussein with a hanging in a secret location, at night, by men in black masks.

Sometimes the future isn't as important as the present. Sometimes doing the right thing, and doing the easy thing are different things. Your gender is no defense. You must act. Sometimes great offices demand great sacrifices, and difficult decisions.

Sometimes you have to fall on your own sword, for the good of the country you serve. A lot of decent kids have died honorably in an obscene war, but they did their duty, and your political future and your personal ego aren't as important as the life of ONE soldier.

Anyone who believed otherwise about themselves would not be fit to serve in any public capacity whatsoever. I am sure you will agree.

You must do your duty. And you must impeach. There is no one else with the power, and, therefore the responsibility. The buck stops with you.

(Don't look so glum. A substantial number of Americans already feel that way. The number will only grow. Besides, if you do a good job, you'll be president.)

But only your hand holds the gavel. And only you can perform the duty that We, the People, entrusted you with.

Don't let us down.

Courage.

cross posted from his vorpal sword
Posted by ed waldo at 5:59 AM

The Right Is Having A Field Day!

http://www.weeklystandard.com/weblogs/TWSFP/2007/12/daily_blog_buzz_8.asp

http://rawstory.com/news/2007/Spurned_by_major_newspapers_Dem_Congressman_1214.html
http://susiemadrak.com/2007/12/15/09/11/impeach-this

http://smashedfrog.blogspot.com/2007/12/soup-to-impeach-cheney.html

http://pmcarpenter.blogs.com/p_m_carpenters_commentary/2007/12/impeach-mukasey.html

Impeach Mukasey -- or for God's sake, at least throw the punch

As I recall from my days of youthful delinquencies, when you're eyeball to eyeball with a nasty neighborhood troll, and you know beyond any reasonable doubt that he's about to rudely inflict some dominance, the most judicious thing you can do is to coldcock the s.o.b., then stand over his bleeding proboscis and crumpled frame and let him know that that was just a warning. In short, you must first get the menacing thug's attention. And reason won't work. Not as a first option.

I offer this experiential advice to the various chairs and ranking members of Congressional oversight committees who are now eyeball to eyeball with the newest Bushie troll on the block, Attorney General Michael Mukasey. You had best coldcock him now, while you have the chance. And that means moving to impeach his sexagenarian ass -- to get his attention, if nothing else.

It didn't take Mr. Mukasey long to establish that he's right out of the Gonzales mold of executive power über alles. Surely this does not come as a surprise. After all, during his confirmation hearings he sat and cagily testified to his jurisprudential crush on presidential Iron Men, suggesting that the courts and Congress were but mere Constitutional appendages and afterthoughts when it comes to interpreting the law. They're cute, but what really gets his blood flowing where it counts is that big lug of an insensitive brute in the Oval Office.

Gentlemen, you can't reason with thinking like that. Not as a first option, anyway. So when Mr. Mukasey writes you boys slimy letters dripping with obstruction of justice -- letters declaring that his "department would not comply with Congressional requests for information [on the CIA videotape-destruction scandal]" -- then you had better come out swinging. Hard.

When he writes insultingly to the Senate Judiciary Committee that his virtuous goal is to "resist political pressure," therefore he "will not at this time provide further information," then you had better throw your best punch. Fast.

And when, through henchmen, he writes to House Intelligence Committee leaders that their prying poses "significant risks" to his own investigation -- meaning the House might uncover something of anti-administration value in a timely manner -- then you had better deck him. Flat.

Even Republican ranking members aren't happy about Gonzales' Second Coming. "We," penned Republican Peter Hoekstra, for example, along with House Intelligence Chairman Silvestre Reyes -- "are stunned that the Justice Department would move to block our investigation." They added, somewhat pathetically, that "parallel investigations occur all of the time, and there is no basis upon which the Attorney General can stand in the way of our work."

Actually, there is. Yet the insidious "basis" upon which the attorney general is stiffing them is one that, at long last, should be brutally confronted.

The exercise of contemporary executive-privilege assertions began innocently and nobly enough. Its origins lie in the 1950s, when that slimeball of a senator Joseph McCarthy was snooping anywhere and everywhere, witchhunting for slippery commies. He chewed up executive-branch personnel for kicks, abusing the hell out of them before his committee and demanding their papers on whims. President Eisenhower finally declared that enough was enough. He instructed his attorney general to find some legal justification -- however creative -- to put a stop to it. His a.g. did, and to a stop, it came -- along with McCarthy's career.

But, like all presidential powers left unfettered, the one of executive privilege has grown monstrously over the decades. It is now used, quite simply and blatantly, to obstruct justice -- to crush even incipient Congressional efforts in its proper Constitutional role of investigation and oversight. And Republicans under the Bush administration are getting as worried about it as Democrats. They smell a Democratic president in a year, and envision the same presidential tactics used against -- at some possible point -- a Republican-led Congress.

Hence rolling back the privilege is, for now, of keen bipartisan interest. But given that we're talking the abominably thuggish Bush administration, Congress would have to coldcock it. A bill to impeach the attorney general for obstruction of justice would be a nice touch -- one that could engender bipartisan support, and one that just might get the administration's attention.

Now, would Democrats commit such an intelligent act of self-defense -- even given a push from the notably meekless across the aisle? Ah, there's the rub.

"How To Screw Up the Unscrewable," by Nancy Pelosi

What, in the name of all that is politically rational, is wrong with this statement? -- "Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Wednesday afternoon Democrats would meet Bush's demand for $933 billion in total spending by implementing across the board cuts, a move that showed Democrats have been backed into a corner by a president unwilling to negotiate on appropriations."

OK, that was an easy one. Even the exceedingly unastute would be apt to read and reread that line in a doubled-up state of bemusement. It is axiomatic that when an opposition party sweeps into Congressional power, while the president of the humiliated and now minority party clings to an approval rating that hovers somewhere around his hat size, the one then "backed into a corner" during, say, budget negotiations, is pretty easy to spot.

But the politically axiomatic has been cashiered. The majority are not masters of their domain; they are slaves of textbook cautious inertia and self-interested shamanistic advisers, and grounded in a reelection obsession that is further grounded in the cowardly admonition, "Don't ever, ever rock the boat."

The lede above comes from a Politico piece whose headline presaged the preposterousness within: "Dems Cave on Budget" -- and get this, for the headline continued -- "Conservatives Still Wary."

That first independent clause would prompt the average reader to bluntly blurt, Say what? The Dems, as in the party in power? Cave, as in acceding to those thrown over? And the second clause -- that of feigned conservative wariness -- would surely prompt the even blunter: Who gives a shit?

But we live in strange times, because we're at the mercy of those who are strangely in Congressional power. Case in point: If you haven't read what's causing the budget-negotiation difficulties and cave-ins, you likely -- and simply -- won't believe it.

I quote again the Politico: "By Thursday morning, the Republican Study Committee, which represents more than 100 conservative GOP lawmakers, started railing against the deal, saying the addition of billions in 'emergency' spending and veterans affairs money could bust the president's budget."

See what I meant? You don't believe it, right? You're stunned, right? Perhaps even tee-heeing with abandon?

Not only are GOP lawmakers denouncing the horrifying tactic of appropriating funds segregated from the budget as "emergency spending" -- which, when they were in power, they racked up in the hundreds of billions of dollars -- a large part of the emergency spending they're railing against is directed at veterans. This would be in a time of war; and in a time of repeated exposés highlighting veterans' indifferent and disgracefully inadequate care; and in a time when veterans, GOP lawmakers have thundered, are a group that sits next to God and they'd do absolutely anything for. Nothing is too good for the veterans, or over the top, or subject to compromise or refusal to sacrifice.

The hypocrisy is breathtaking. Once again I quote: "Traditionally, 'emergency' funding does not count against regular annual spending levels. For example, the GOP has never counted the Iraq war funding against annual budgets because the war has been funded for five years as emergency supplemental spending."

Yet now, House Republican leaders John Boehner and Roy Blunt "say that if Democrats want more money for veterans, they'll have to cut from somewhere else."

Then, in what one would suspect is the breathtakingly ineffable, a Republican spokesman nevertheless found the words: "Thus far Republicans have worked all year to successfully protect taxpayers from a Democrat spending spree. At this point the Democrat leadership is not in a desirable negotiating position."

Not in a desirable position? These are military veterans they're talking about. A more heartwarming, vote-getting, demagogically ripe issue is simply unimaginable. And you can be sure that if it were the Democrats denying the extra veterans-funding, Republicans would already have their heads on pikes, lining the walkway to Capitol Hill.

It's one of those issues that droppeth gently from the political heavens -- yet Democrats managed to screw up the unscrewable. They caved. I am in awe. I haven't witnessed political professionalism like this since, well, since the day before Wednesday, and the day before that, and the day ...

To Hell with Truthiness; Try Some Ballsiness

The Founders intended the U.S. Senate to move slowly, to act deliberately, to be distanced from the frenzied passions of the masses, whose emotional release would come from the lower House and then be softened by the smaller, upper body of quiet contemplation.

That was the plan. After all, they operated in the Age of Reason; they envisioned sure, steady progress and the thoughtful march of history. And for a couple hundred years, the plan worked reasonably well (with one rather major exception in the mid-19th century).

But the Founders failed to anticipate and therefore Constitutionally guard against the development of rabidly entrenched political parties, and they certainly never foresaw the likes of today's GOP, which has twisted the senatorial concepts of contemplation and minority rights out of all recognizable form.

If it's true, and it is, that Senate Democrats have behaved a bit devilishly lately -- and I won't take time to review that sordid history -- one must nevertheless have a little sympathy for the devils. Look at what they're up against: a GOP minority that still thinks it's the majority, a GOP stubbornness not seen since the Gingrich days, and a GOP that is grotesquely focused on pure politics over any consideration of actual public policy. In short, the Senate under GOP minority rule is the antithesis of all the Founders envisioned -- that of a dispassionate, institutional buffer for the common good.

The New York Times this morning has an excellent overview of today's senatorial rathole, summarizing that Minority Leader Mitch McConnell "and his fellow Republicans are playing such tight defense, blocking nearly every bill proposed by the slim Democratic majority that they are increasingly able to dictate what they want, much to the dismay of the majority leader, Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, and frustrated Democrats in the House."

In fact, GOP obstructionism has morphed so far from the exotic to s.o.p., it occasionally enters the realm of the conspicuously comical; for example, "The Senate Republicans are so accustomed to blocking measures that when the Democrats finally agreed last week to their demands on a bill to repair the alternative minimum tax, the Republicans still objected, briefly blocking the version of the bill that they wanted before scrambling to approve it later." Nasty habits die hard.

In that characteristic doublespeak that only modern GOPers do so well, Mr. McConnell portrayed his party's slithering yahooism as "a positive message of our vision of America." In other words, when you're entrenched behind the eight ball, make your defensive crouch look like a plus -- like you're America's last, and best, salvation, and never mind that what you're defending against is what voters voted for in the last election.

And you know what? There's a reasonably good chance Mr. McConnell and his party will get away with it in the next election. Why? Because, simply, they know how to sell a message, no matter how mind-bendingly farcical that message may be. How? Simply by hammering away at it over, and over ... and over ... and maintaining the unbroken employment of that chorus of singing angels and that brood of prehensile flag-wavers in the background.

Yet after 30 years of this instructive and wildly successful right-wing swill, the Democrats still haven't gotten the hang of it. They merely cower in the face of it, instead.

Well, gee, folks, those miserable GOPers are upsetting our plans, they say. And that bad old Republican POTUS would just veto whatever we did manage to send up, they say. Boo-hoo and sorryass us, they say.

But you know -- don't you? -- how Republicans would handle such a sticky situation were both the situational roles reversed.

They'd say, terrific! Let the Democrats filibuster, but force each and every filibuster onto the floor. Let us have cloture vote after cloture vote. Let us, to break the monotony, send bill after bill to the Democratic president for his veto. And then let's do it all over again, step by bloody step. Let the Word go forth across this great and vast land that we could be great again, if only it weren't for those uncompromising Dems.

Now bring up the angels and the flag-waving clowns.

It's an exquisitely simple technique. To be effective, however, it does call for one other essential element: balls -- huge, swinging and unapologetic ones.

Need I say more?

What Is Probably in the Missing Tapes by Naomi Wolf

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/naomi-wolf/what-is-probably-in-the-m_b_76708.html

http://www.commondreams.org/archive/2007/12/14/5824

http://www.csmonitor.com/2007/1212/p02s02-uspo.html

THE RE ALITY OF HOW IT ALL WORKS.

Anchorage, Alaska - In grainy, secretly recorded hotel-room videotapes, executives with Alaska's biggest oil-services company plot ways to craft an industry-friendly version of a pending oil-tax rewrite, brag about how they "own" key politicians and hand out wads of cash to lawmakers, who swear their fealty.

"Never forget who takes you to the dance," says former House Speaker Pete Kott, pointing to VECO Corp. Chairman and heavyweight Republican patron Bill Allen, in one of the tapes. "I had to cheat, steal, beg, borrow, and lie."

"Well, that will stay in this room," one lobbyist responds. Bursts of laughter ensue.

"I sold my soul to the devil, though," Representative Kott jokes later, to which Mr. Allen tells him: "Now I own [you]."

That 2006 conversation and others like it recorded by the Federal Bureau of Investigation have extended far beyond Juneau's elegant Baranof Hotel and its now infamous Suite 604, rented annually by the VECO oil officials. The tapes have been played repeatedly in federal court, on local news, and the Internet. The still-unfolding scandal, brought to light by a federal investigation years in the making, has forced Alaskans to ask serious questions about who is running their state.

The investigation covers vast political territory, including federal fisheries policies, budget earmarks, federal grants, and even ambitions for private prisons in Alaska – but most of what has been revealed so far involves the staggering amount of leverage the oil industry exerts over fundamental oil policy, including last year's oil tax.

Air of inevitability escaping Clinton

Des Moines Register Endorse…most Curious don’t you think?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/12/15/AR2007121501313.html

http://www.zimbio.com/Congressman+Dennis+Kucinich/articles/301/Impeach+Bush+Cheney+Pelosi+Page

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