January 4, 2008 archive

Four at Four

News and open thread.

  1. From the Washington Post, a story about one soldier’s death in Iraq in A drunken night in Iraq, a soldier is left behind.

    Pfc. Hannah Gunterman McKinney was 20 years old, the brown-eyed mother of a toddler son, when she was spotted in the headlights of a passing Humvee on a perimeter road at one of the largest U.S. military camps in Iraq.

    Thirteen hours later, in Redlands, Calif., Barbie and Matt Heavrin, who had three children in the military, learned they had lost their elder daughter to ‘injuries suffered when she was struck by a vehicle,’ as the Army first described it…

    Her case would become one in a litany of noncombat deaths in Iraq, which number more than 700, from crashes, suicides, illnesses and accidents that sometimes reveal messy truths about life in the war zone…

    Her parents want her story to be fully told. They cannot reconcile themselves to the idea that, on that terrible day in Taji, their daughter was left behind…

    Barbie Heavrin took McKinney’s son, Todd, not yet 2, to her coffin to bid goodbye.

    “Mama sleep?” the boy asked, patting her forehead.

    Follow the link to the WaPo story above to read about one soldier’s life and death in a war zone. Mr. Bush’s war is destroying our troops.

  2. The New York Times reports At Huckabee central, cheers for Evangelical base. “Mr. Huckabee, a former Baptist minister, rode a crest of evangelical Christian support to victory… A poll of people entering the Republican caucuses on Thursday showed more than 8 in 10 of his supporters identified themselves as evangelicals. The same surveys showed extraordinary turnout among evangelicals, who represented some 60 percent of Republican caucusgoers. In years past, Republican Party leaders in Iowa put evangelical turnout at about 40 percent.” Iowa takes America one step closer to becoming the Republic of Gilead.

  3. Are we in a recession yet? The Guardian reports US jobless figures up as economy suffers severe downturn. “Unemployment in the US rose to its highest level in more than two years last month as the job-creation machine in the world’s biggest economy virtually ground to a halt… The Labor Department… said the jobless rate rose from 4.7% to 5% in December… Employers added a mere 18,000 jobs last month – the weakest performance by non-farm payrolls since 2003, when the economy was starting to recover from the short-lived recession that followed the collapse of the dotcom bubble.” The news also sent the dollar and share prices down.

  4. More news from Rep. Jane “too little, too late” Harman… according to the Washington Post, Harman knew the CIA in 2003 planned destruction of tapes. “Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif.) released a declassified copy of a letter she secretly wrote to the CIA in February 2003, in which she quoted then-CIA General Counsel Scott W. Muller as telling her a tape of the agency’s interrogation of Zayn al-Abidin Muhammed Hussein, better known as Abu Zubaida, ‘will be destroyed after the Inspector General finishes his inquiry’… She urged Muller to ‘reconsider’ that plan and predicted that the tapes’ destruction ‘would reflect badly on the agency’… Harman said she never received a direct reply to her advice that destroying the tapes would be a mistake.” And, evidently she didn’t follow-up on her letter, nor did she make her knowledge public until too late. Marcy Winograd, it’s time for another primary in CA-36.

Huckabee For Executioner

Seldom have we seen a politician who so relished and justified the grisly business of state killing.  Mike Huckabee actually brags about his willingness to kill.  And justifies it by talking about Jesus.

This from the reactionary conservative Washington Times:

Mike Huckabee has started to cite the 16 executions he oversaw as Arkansas governor in his presidential campaign, pointing to them as a type of experience no other candidate in the Republican race can claim.

It’s a grisly claim to make, but Huckabee is trying to counter Mitt Romney’s attacks that he is soft on crime.

“The 16 people I carried out execution on in Arkansas would hardly say I’m soft on crime,” Huckabee told supporters while campaigning in Indianola, Iowa, over the weekend.

Last week he made a similar statement to voters in Pella, telling them, “Ask the 16 people on which I carried out executions.”

The implication is this: Huckabee is tough and will kill.  Romney is weak. He has not killed as governor.

If this were isolated tough talk it would be disgraceful enough.  But, in fact, it’s part of Huckabee’s long willingness to act as executioner.

More across the jump.

Choosing Hope

And thus ends my silence on Election ’08! For the record, my choices were Kucinich, then Dodd, then Edwards, (still active!) then Obama.

Iow….ABH, LOL.

Nothing I was going to say was going to make a difference in Iowa, and we all have seen the “ridiculousness and danger” of candidate diaries on Dkos….which were all speculation…at best. Now that we have some actual NEWS to talk about and analyze, hopefully things will be a little different. For good or bad, Iowa sets the tone and the narrative..so now it is set. These are not normal times though, and I have a feeling that this will not be a normal race!

For what it is worth, some thoughts below the fold.

Mike says: ” “It’s the War,” Says Iowa to Hillary “

And adds — And a “Happy Blue Year” To All!

Michael Moore has it partly right, a Big Part, for the Failed Foreign Policies, The War in Iraq and on Terrorism, of this Incompetant, Corrupt Administration will be defining what this Country faces for Decades!

We have Set In Stone, what many in the World, had already thought about Us. And in doing so have Created even More Hatreds, towards the Country, but even more Damaging, towards Us the Citizens Of!

Pony Party, Phone it in Friday

If the liar torturer simian commander in chief gets stuck, just click and drag him to get him moving again….

VMN Games – Free Games

2008 Temperature Prediction


The University of East Anglia (UK), working with the British Met Office, has made its annual temperature prediction for 2008:

2008 is set to be cooler globally than recent years say Met Office and University of East Anglia climate scientists, but is still forecast to be one of the top-ten warmest years.

Each January, the climate scientists at the university work with the British Met Office to forecast the expected temperature, taking into account conditions such as El Niño and La Niña, greenhouse gases, industrial aerosols, particulates, ocean trends and solar impact.

The assessment for 2008 is that there will be a “strong La Niña” event in the Pacific, which will limit the warming trend for the year (whilst still being one of the warmest years):

During La Niña, cold waters upwell to cool large areas of the ocean and land surface temperatures. The forecast includes for the first time a new decadal forecast using a climate model. This indicates that the current La Niña event will weaken only slowly through 2008, disappearing by the end of the year.

More below the jump…

Docudharma Times Friday January 4

This is an Open Thread: Where everything is spun to the left

Headlines For Friday January 4: U.S. Curtailing Bids to Expand Medicaid Rolls: Video of Sleeping Guards Shakes Nuclear Industry: Five killed in Turkish car bomb attack: Science bows to theology as the Pope dismantles Vatican observatory

Obama Takes Iowa in a Big Turnout as Clinton Falters; Huckabee Victor

DES MOINES – Senator Barack Obama of Illinois, a first-term Democratic senator trying to become the nation’s first African-American president, rolled to victory in the Iowa caucuses on Thursday night, lifted by a record turnout of voters who embraced his promise of change.

The victory by Mr. Obama, 46, amounted to a startling setback for Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, 60, of New York, who just months ago presented herself as the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination. The result left uncertain the prospects for John Edwards, a former senator from North Carolina, who had staked his second bid for the White House on winning Iowa.

Obama Strikes At Mass Killers

Don’t get me wrong.  I would prefer the southern populist who wants to go after some real bad guys.  But even John and Elizabeth Edwards might take heart from this pioneering legislation offered by Barack Obama.

Genomics and Personalized Medicine Act of 2006 (Introduced in Senate)

            (2) Personalized medicine is the application of genomic and molecular data to better target the delivery of health care, facilitate the discovery and clinical testing of new products, and help determine a patient’s predisposition to a particular disease or condition.

           (3) Many commonly-used drugs are typically effective in only 40 to 60 percent of the patient population.

           (4) In the United States, up to 15 percent of hospitalized patients experience a serious adverse drug reaction, and more than 100,000 deaths are attributed annually to such reactions.

           (5) Pharmacogenomics has the potential to dramatically increase the efficacy and safety of drugs and reduce healthcare costs, and is fundamental to the practice of genome-based personalized medicine.

(7) The cancer drug Gleevec was developed based on knowledge of the chromosomal translocation that causes chronic myelogenous leukemia, which is characterized by an abnormal growth in the number of white blood cells. The mean 5-year survival for affected patients who are treated with Gleevec is 95 percent, which contrasts to a 5-year survival of 50 percent for patients treated with older therapies…


What are you reading?

Just a regular list this week, and Happy New Year

If you like to trade books, try BookMooch.

What are you reading? is crossposted to dailykos

HELP! Good cause needs writers, members and help.

I currently have a bare bones web site/blog called sanchopress.com with which I desperately need help and writers. It is going to be designed to unite the left and the troops/veterans as well as many other features I will explain further along.  Why it is bare bones, when it once was not, is a long story and not needed here.


Articles can be written on it now as well as making comments, but that is it for now.I have an excellent web designer who is very busy now and comes highly recommended. She has 87 clients all over the world. She can not start on sanchopress.com for about two weeks.

I am a veteran and my passion and dedication has been trying to help the troops/veterans. I have tried to unite the left and the troops/veterans. I have written diaries about the terrible plight of the troops/veterans and their families. The horrendous treatment and wait times at the Veterans Administration hospitals. I posted many diaries about troops/veterans issues.

Below are some of my troop/veterans diaries tat were posted on DailyKos, Docudharma, Turn Maine Blue and VetVoice.





My diaries had not gotten the left inspired enough to make a big difference in helping the troops. I blame nobody. Maybe they were not good enough diaries or maybe I did not have enough of a reputation established in the left community. With the fact that this method was not working, I knew I had to think of another way to get my goal acheived. I decided on my own blog. I knew I had to have a very good reason for people to come to my blog/site if I started one.

I gave a great deal of thought to the project because there are tons of web sites out there. I HAD to have something different and unique to merge these two groups. Otherwise, why come to mine?

Using my skills from my successful 20+ year career in corporate marketing/sales/management I began to develop what I believed to be a win/win idea that I have not seen anywhere on the web. If someone can show me a site/blog with the veterans/troops working in unison with the left, I would like to take a look at it.

I am also setting SanchoPress as a corporation with paid employees, a second in charge etc. Of course I can not pay anyone until we are successful and begin to receive moneys from donations and from advertisements.

ALL blogs
operate on this system of income. There is even a web site showing most blogs income from advertisements only (below). Since I am looking to the future, I must make a plan for this. That is only wise and logical. When we are successful, it WILL happen. Advertisers WILL come and offer money to be on the site.


Eventually I want to pay Editorial Page Contributors (front pagers), Web designers, graphic designers and others who make a substantial contribution to the corporation and cause.

I know many troops on the front lines from my involvement in VetVoice. I know many veterans from the VA where I have health coverage. I know Brian Mcgough who did the rebuttal film to Rush Limbaugh. I even have a chopper pilot of a medi-vac unit who has committed to writing a daily diary each evening about what happened in his day and to contribute it on sanchopress.com (beginning in March).

I know “owners” of veterans wives for change organizations and changes for veterans families organizations. They are on board with this.

I know many others from this war who are now out of the military.  I also have gotten to know some members on Dailykos, Docudharma, Turn Maine Blue and VetVoice. I need more than the few I have gotten to know on each blog to help this endeavor work.

I have TBI (like many vets), which caused depressive disorder, mental health issues and I also fractured three vertebrae in the auto accident that caused all these issues. I am disabled. With some similar problems to those returning from combat, I can relate better to them. I have also had nine years to learn to live with my problems and can help some adapt. We all have our cross to bare. I am not complaining. I wouldn’t trade my problems for yours.

I spend a great deal of time on the blogs and the internet. Much of it researching troops/veterans issues. The situation is horrendous. Our military is decimated. They are stretched beyond limits. They are exhausted and weak and have tours that are far too long and stays home that are far too short.

The House subcommittee On Veterans Health estimates that 65% of troops returning from this war will have some degree of brain damage (TBI)!

I finally came up with the idea to get both groups on one site. My vision was to make a newspaper type blog with links to every left blog and every troop/veterans blog. Also every non profit charitable organization and animal rights site and global warming sites, Native American sites, every news feed and more. This idea/vision became sanchopress.com.

A one stop shop with everything a blogger needs in one place and also what the troops/veterans need too. This in no way will hurt blogs like DailyKos or Docudharrma or any of the others including troops/veterans blogs. It will in fact help them. Some coming to sanchopress.com will see sites they didn’t know about and go to different blogs than they have ever visited before.

SanchoPress will have some unique features. When one of the links has a petition going, it will show up in red on the screen so all know. There will be a daily quote, a daily trivia question, a daily unknown fact, a daily Don Quixote picture and several more similar items to at least add a little bit on the lighter side.

If the citizens of the left hear first hand about TBI, PTSD, mental health problems, divorce, spousal abuse, child abuse, homelessness, inadequate medical care, GWS and a troop/veteran suicide rate of 18 per day, they will be more inclined to help.

OUR troops/veterans are in dire need of our help. The military and their structure are not prone to react to soldiers complaints. It will take our voices along with theirs to get things fixed.

We will operate as a team, united, as one group, demanding action and results for both the troops/veterans issues and our issues. The power of this larger group will definitely have more of an impact than each on their own.

They need us to do things to help them, like write senators and congressmen about their poor health care. Ending this war! The 3-6 month wait for mental health problems at VA hospitals. The housing that has been outsourced and many have lead paint and mold problems. Diagnosing soldiers with personality disorder instead of PTSD so they don’t get benefits and are then told to vacate the military housing and base within 10 days (22,000 since the war started). The 200,000 homeless veterans. More and more.

The troops/veterans are beginning to see the right for what they truly are. They know the right vehemently pushed to send them into this useless war. Now, when they and their families are in need, the right has abandoned those they sent there to carry out their dirty deeds.

Majority Leader Dodd Must Be Replaced

August 3, 2008

Chris Dodd’s ascension to Senate Majority Leader after Harry Reid resigned that position in February 2008 was a time of great hope for the netroots.  His Presidential campaign was strong on the issues; while it did not catch fire with the public it brought him great esteem among the netroots.  When he defeated Joe Biden for the position by one vote, we expected great things from him.  Instead, the past six months have brough bitter disappointment.  It is time for him to resign.

Chris Dodd campaigned for President calling for an end to the occupation of Iraq and a restoration of the Constitution.  And yet, Chris Dodd has failed to prevent yet another appropriation — albeit a smaller one than requested — to keep troops in Iraq through the end of the year.  And he has been unable to prevent passage of a FISA bill that, while it does not offer immunity to telcos, also does not state unequivocally that the President was violating the law.  Finally, he called for funding for programs that would fight global warming, and none has been forthcoming.

We had the right to expect more.  Dodd didn’t deliver, and so he must go.

Muse in the Morning

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Muse in the Morning

The muses are ancient.  The inspirations for our stories were said to be born from them.  Muses of song and dance, or poetry and prose, of comedy and tragedy, of the inward and the outward.  In one version they are Calliope, Euterpe and Terpsichore, Erato and Clio, Thalia and Melpomene, Polyhymnia and Urania.

It has also been traditional to name a tenth muse.  Plato declared Sappho to be the tenth muse, the muse of women poets.  Others have been suggested throughout the centuries.  I don’t have a name for one, but I do think there should be a muse for the graphical arts.  And maybe there should be many more.

Please join us inside to celebrate our various muses…

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