July 15, 2011 archive

Today on The Stars Hollow Gazette

Our regular featured content-

mishima‘s news digest 6 In The Morning will be on hiatus

These featured articles-

special features-

The continuing coverage of the world’s most watched and controversial cycling event, Le Tour de France.

Join us on Tuesday for Le Tour 2011- Stage 14 at 7:30 AM EDT.

This is an Open Thread

Hate Groups at it Again

Here we go again.  Massachusetts is debating An Act Relative to Transgender Equal Rights that would provide protections from discrimination in public transit, hospitals, hotels, restaurants, schools, and bathrooms, and the usual suspects have skipped by all the items until they got to bathrooms.

Ah, yes.  Men dressed like women are going to rape your daughter and/or your wife in public toilets if transgender people are accorded equal citizenship.

Has there ever been a case of a transperson committing such an act in a public restroom?  Research comes up empty.  How many sexual predators dress as women in order to perform their nefarious deeds?  And is it fair to punish transpeople for the perceived misdeeds of people who are not trans?


Along Came Daffy

On This Day In History July 15

While mishima is on hiatus, I will be cross posting some of our daily and weekly features from The Stars Hollow Gazette

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

Click on images to enlarge

July 15 is the 196th day of the year (197th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 169 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day 1789, Lafayette selected colonel-general of the National Guard of Paris

Only one day after the fall of the Bastille marked the beginning of a new revolutionary regime in France, the French aristocrat and hero of the American War for Independence, Marie-Joseph Paul Roch Yves Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette, becomes the colonel-general of the National Guard of Paris by acclamation. Lafayette served as a human link between America and France in what is sometimes known as The Age of Revolutions.

National Guard, Versailles, and Day of Daggers

On 15 July, Lafayette was acclaimed commander-in-chief of the National Guard of France, an armed force established to maintain order under the control of the Assembly. Lafayette proposed the name and the symbol of the group: a blue, white and red cockade. On 5 October 1789, a Parisian crowd, composed mostly of rough women working in the markets selling fish, marched to Versailles in response to the scarcity of bread. Members of the National Guard followed the march, and when Lafayette said that this march is non-sense, the National Guard’s men openly defied his power and according to some sources, they said “We are going with you, or over you”, then Lafayette reluctantly led the National Guard army to Versaille. At Versailles, the king accepted the Assembly’s votes but refused requests to return to Paris. That evening, Lafayette replaced most of the royal bodyguards with National Guardsmen. At dawn, the crowd broke into the palace. Before it succeeded in entering the queen’s bedroom, Marie Antoinette fled to the king’s apartments. Lafayette took the royal family onto the palace balcony and attempted to restore order. The crowd insisted that the king and his family move to Paris where they were installed in the Tuileries Palace. At the balcony, King Louis simply appeared, and everyone started chanting “Vive le Roi!”. Then when Maria Antoinette appeared with her children, she was told to send the children back, afterwards, when she came out alone, people shouted to shoot her, but when she stood her ground facing almost certain death, no one opened fire. After several seconds and the lowering of rifles, people started to chant “Vive la Reine!” (“Long live the Queen”, now the crowd is including the Queen)As leader of the National Guard, Lafayette attempted to maintain order. On 12 May 1790, he instituted, along with Jean Sylvain Bailly (mayor of Paris), a political club called the “Society of 1789” . The club’s intention was to provide balance to the influence of the Jacobins. On 14 July 1790, Lafayette took the civic oath on the Champs de Mars, vowing to “be ever faithful to the nation, to the law, and to the king; to support with our utmost power the constitution decreed by the National Assembly, and accepted by the king.”

He continued to work for order in the coming months. On 20 February 1791, the Day of Daggers, Lafayette traveled to Vincennes in response to an attempt to liberate a local prison. Meanwhile, armed nobles converged around the Tuileries, afraid the unprotected king would be attacked. Lafayette returned to Paris to disarm the nobles.[89] On 18 April, the National Guard disobeyed Lafayette and stopped the King from leaving for Saint-Cloud over Easter.

Muse in the Morning

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Muse in the Morning

Time for a break from poetry…in order to create some art.

I would rather die an individual than live my life as a clone.

–Cristina Marrero

Art Glass 2

Late Night Karaoke

Silence of the Lambs

Lafayette Park July 14 2011
Lafayette Park, Washington DC, July 14, 2011

In the White House Obama and his Republican playmates were busily selling out Medicare, Social Security, and every remnant of environmental and financial regulation, and meanwhile across the street in Lafayette Park there wasn’t so much as a whisper of protest, and likewise on the National Mall and around the Capitol.  

Why We Say Save Our Schools

copyright ¬© 2011 Betsy L. Angert.  Empathy And Education; BeThink or  BeThink.org

I am but one who will stand strong to ensure an equal education for all.  All who do or plan to, will express themselves in various ways.  Some will March. Others will Rally or gather in Conference.  Several have, do, or expect to act locally.  Countless change what they can for children within the dynamics that define their family.  Nationwide, innumerable Americans join hands and embrace a common cause. Let us Save Our Schools.

Have Scientists discovered the cure for Obama-bot-ism?

The following suggests a cure for Obama-bot-ism, analogous to a broad-spectrum anti-biotic. It also might help cure the mentation of Rush Limbaugh ditto-heads, and such. From a comment by jedimsnbcko19 on a recent diary by Jane Hamsher:


ETA: The source is from somebody named “Hugh” (apparently no last name). From the comment, below, see:

The full table of content for all 260 items is here: http://obamascandalslist.blogs…

* Documentation for items 1 thru 100 is here: http://obamascandalslist.blogs…

* Documentation for items 101 thru 200 is here: http://obamascandalslist.blogs…

* Documentation for items 201-260 is here: http://obamascandalslist.blogs…


Let say Obama done 10 things for Progressives, he done a lot more for his GOP friends. LOL please read below Mike Sax

1. Reneged on pledge to filibuster FISA Amendments Act (July 2008)

2. Lobbied for $700 billion Paulson TARP bank bailout

3. Pushed for no sanctions against Lieberman despite his support for John McCain

4. Nominated healthcare company lobbyist Tom Daschle as Secretary of HHS

5. Had neoliberal Robert Rubin as his chief economics adviser

6. Then had the equally neoliberal Larry Summers assume this role

7. Chose the failing upwards Timothy Geithner to head Treasury

8. AIG bonuses and money to Goldman under Obama

9. Doubling down in Afghanistan

10. Delay and reduction of withdrawal from Iraq

11. Moving Guantanamo activities to Bagram

12. Military commissions for some detainees

13. Support for indefinite detention

14. Refusal to release torture photos under FOIA

15. Refusal to investigate and prosecute Bush era criminality

16. Geithner’s DOA economic rescue programs: the PPIP and TALF

17. Minimal help for homeowners and no cramdowns

18. Treatment of Chrysler and GM with bankrupcy compared to bank no fail “stress tests”

19. Kabuki of TARP repayment by banks while still dependent on government credit lines

20. Extra-Constitutional use of the Fed by the Executive for fiscal policy

21. Credit Card bill without usury caps and with 9 month delay for other reforms

22. Business friendly Mary Schapiro named to head SEC

23. Gary Gensler who helped deregulate derivatives named to head CFTC

24. $787 billion stimulus: too little, too late, poorly structured

25. Use of financial crisis to attack Social Security and Medicare

26. The great healthcare non-debate

27. Continued use of state secrets argument in ongoing Bush era cases

28. Use of signing statements, including one to punish whistleblowers

29. Vetting process problems, especially tax related ones

30. Leaving Dawn Johnsen’s nomination to head OLC twisting in the wind

31. Eric Holder, failure to reform DOJ, not removing worst of Bush USAs

32. Failure to move against new oil bubble

33. Retention of Bush Defense team: Gates, Patraeus, and Odierno

34. Continued missile strikes inside Pakistan

35. Keeping Bush’s domestic spying programs and adding a new one, cybersecurity

36. Choice of Elena Kagan who favors expansive Presidential powers as Sollicitor General, her subsequent nomination to the Supreme Court

37. Leaving EFCA (to help counter anti-union companies) to wither in Congress

38. Welcoming Arlen Specter who brings nothing to the Democrats into the party

39. Weak ineffective proposals for financial reform

40. Obama wanted John Brennan at CIA but settled for making him his counter- terrorism adviser

41. Chas Freeman with broader Mideast perspective done in by AIPAC

42. Dennis Blair made DNI; failed to act to stop atrocities in East Timor

43. Choice of McChrystal involved in torture in Iraq to head Afghanistan command

44. Obama threat to suspend intelligence cooperation with UK over Binyam Mohamed case

45. Efforts to keep Bush and Obama White House logs secret

46. Playing games with “Don’t ask, don’t tell”

47. Filing a brief to overturn Jackson (access to lawyer) in the Montejo case

48. Not withdrawing Bush brief in Osborne DNA case

49. Egregious brief in challenge to Defense of Marriage Act

50. The Supplemental which made Iraq and Afghanistan Democratic wars

51. Choice of Rahm Emanuel as the President’s Chief of Staff

52. Choice of Dennis Ross as Iran envoy and then his move to the White House

53. Politically embarrassing processes to fill Obama and Clinton’s Senate seats

54. Choice of Bill Richardson, then Judd Gregg to head Commerce Department

55. Reneging on pledge to re-negotiate NAFTA

56. Obama’s throwing his pastor Jeremiah Wright to the curb, then reaching out to religious conservative Rick Warren

57. Continued challenges to habeas corpus petitions over indefinite detention, the Janko case

58. The Obama White House website

59. Continuing an ineffective program that Iran can exploit politically

60. Going slow on climate change when there is no time to

61. Not withdrawing a Bush-era amicus brief in the Ricci v. DeStefano reverse discrimination case and supporting a rollback of Title VII

62. Appointment of a CIA General Counsel who doesn’t know if waterboarding is torture

63. Appointment of a DNI General Counsel who doesn’t know if waterboarding is torture

64. CIA delay in a FOIA request concerning torture

65. The influence of Goldman Sachs in the Obama Administration

66. Attempt to keep secret the Cheney interview on the Plame affair

67. Mountaintop removal under Obama

68. Attempt to restrict Congressional notification on intelligence matters

69. Opposition to a second stimulus

70. Another egregious attempt to fight a habeas corpus petition in the Jawad case

71. Continuing charter schools and standardized tests

72. Holder’s decision to support a weak, narrow review of torture

73. Re-appointment of Ben Bernanke as Fed Chairman

74. Continuing renditions

75. Politically dubious company was used to vet reporters in Afghanistan

76. Judge vetoes a too weak SEC plea bargain with Bank of America

77. Justice’s argument for making Bagram a new Guantanamo, the al Maqaleh case

78. Defense to turn over databases to poorly controlled fusion centers

79. Obama changes but keeps Bush’s Star Wars program

80. Failure to win an Israeli freeze on settlements

81. White House refuses to back its own staffer environmentalist Van Jones

82. Politicized US Attorney in the Siegelman case cleared by Office of Special Counsel

83. Criticism of Iranian nuclear program; support of Israeli nuclear weapons

84. Support for a weakened reporter’s shield law

85. Use of the Zazi case to retain broad Patriot Act surveillance provisions

86. Wilner v. NSA, continuing the coverup of warrantless surveillance of communications between attorneys and detainees

87. Attempt to spike the Goldstone report on Israeli-Hamas war crimes in Gaza

88. Slowness in filling federal judgeships

89. Inadequate aid to overwhelmed state budgets

90. Attempting to dodge the Supreme Court deciding whether innocent Guantanamo detainees can be resettled in the US

91. Allowing drilling in the waters off the north coast of Alaska

92. Keeping detainee accounts of CIA torture secret

93. Current FBI manual allows for widespread domestic spying

94. Securitization invalidates most foreclosures

95. Geithner wanting unlimited powers to save large banks

96. Another state secrets defense to conceal domestic spying

97. Circuit Court dismissal of Maher Arar suit

98. Weakening Sarbanes-Oxley and calling it financial reform

99. Unemployment

100. Inspector General for Fannie and Freddie ousted for investigating fraud

101. Gaming courts to convict Guantanamo detainees

102. White House counsel removed for his principled stands on torture and Guantanamo

103. US seizes mosques claiming Iranian connection

104. Howard Dean removed as head of the DNC

105. Scientist with close ties to Monsanto put in charge of all governmental agricultural research

106. Pesticide lobbyist nominated as Chief Agricultural Negotiator for trade

107. Effort to let some government contractors avoid paying taxes

108. A bad US Attorney nomination for Northern Iowa

109. Hunger in America

110. The breast cancer recommendations fiasco

111. Ongoing confusion and disorganization in the military commissions process

112. Phillip Carter another official in closing Guantanamo resigns

113. Refusal to sign anti-land mine treaty

114. The Ghizzawi case and the legal limbo of “cleared for release”

115. Black prisons at Balad and Bagram

116. Delay in declassifying historic documents

117. Max Baucus’ conflicts of interest in healthcare and with his girlfriend

118. Major security breach at a White House party and a ridiculous assertion of “executive privilege”

119. Dana “Pig Missile” Perino nominated to the Broadcasting Board of Governors

120. Cass Sunstein, an anti-regulator in a regulatory position

121. Warrantless for profit electronic surveillance by telecoms and search engines

122. The government sides with torture lawyer John Yoo and attacks Bevins actions again

123. The TSA publishes its security manual online

124. Toxic legal arguments in al Zahrani v. Rumsfeld, yet another Bevins action

125. The Nobel Peace Prize and a neocon acceptance speech

126. Blackwater’s involvement in military and CIA assassination and drone programs

127. Congressional Research Service censorship in the firing of Morris Davis

128. AIG writes off $25 billion in debt and sticks taxpayers with the bill

129. The Administration plays hardball to kill an amendment that would lower drug costs

130. A poorly considered blank check to Fannie and Freddie

131. Continuing a Bush botch in the Nisoor Square massacre case

132. Jonathan Gruber, a major defender of Obamacare was also a paid consultant for it

133. A Geithner related cover up of the AIG at par payments on swaps

134. Adoption of stealth signing statements

135. al Bihani, more bad legal reasoning in another Guantanamo habeas case

136. Cutting Medicare and Social Security by deficit commission proposed

137. A 3 year non-freeze budget freeze proposed

138. NASA flights privatized

139. OPR report on Yoo and Bybee watered down and its relation to the Padilla case

140. Government targeting of US citizens for assassination

141. Abuse of informants by ICE agents

142. Obama leaves Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board empty

143. Obama backs firing of teachers in Rhode Island

144. Irish human rights advocate Edward Horgan has US visa pulled

145. Threatened veto of 2010 Intelligence Authorization Act over Congressional notifications

146. Obama Administration intimidation of whistleblowing site: wikileaks

147. Fish and Wildlife Service continues to ignore science on endangered species

148. Senate vacation more important than jobless benefits

149. Government seeks to compel turnover of emails without a warrant

150. Obama goes after an NSA whistleblower: the Thomas Drake case

151. Obama goes after a CIA whistleblower: the James Risen case

152. Weakening Miranda rights in national security cases

153. Advocating the privatizing of public housing

154. Another step in making Bagram the new Guantanamo, the al Maqaleh case, the appeals court edition

155. Massey mining disaster, 29 die because of corporate greed and poor regulation

156. Obama proposal for a line item veto

157. A military commander allowed to use military forces for intelligence operations without Presidential approval

158. Political pandering in sending 1200 National Guardsmen to the Southwest border

159. A sad record on resisting Guantanamo habeas petitions

160. Israel attacks an aid convoy for Gaza; Obama punts

161. A further erosion of Miranda: Berghius v. Thompkins

162. Naming James Clapper, a Bush appointee, to be the next DNI

163. DOJ seeks to protect Vatican in sex abuse scandal

164. Yahya Wehelie, an American exiled without charge

165. Failure to replace National Labor Relations Board members means hundreds of decisions must be reviewed

166. SCOTUS opts for overly broad definition of material support to terrorist groups

167. Speaker Pelosi backstabs Social Security

168. Complaints by government scientists of political interference at Bush era levels

169. Flip flop on free trade agreement with Colombia

170. SEC declares major victory but lets Goldman off easy

171. Private contracting of intelligence continues under Obama

172. Two Guantanamo prisoners to be deported back to Algeria against their will

173. The Shirley Sherrod affair: trumped up charges of racism and a bungled response

174. Whitewash report on Bush era US Attorney firings

175. Despite its record, Blackwater still gets big US government contracts

176. Wikileaks releases government files showing Pakistan involvement with Taliban and admission that things are going poorly in Afghanistan

177. Obama seeks to get access to everyone’s web histories without a court order

178. Teacher funding sacrificed to keep Education Secretary Arne Duncan happy

179. State’s top Iran hand resigns over Obama’s Iran policy

180. Citizens United: validation of unlimited corporate political funding

181. Push to expand US arms sales around the world

182. Project Vigilant, Infragard and “volunteer” corporate spying for the government

183. Obama’s approval hits Bush levels in Arab world

184. Effort to pre-empt state environmental lawsuits involving green house gases

185. Justice’s Anti-trust division asleep at the wheel

186. Kagan’s recusals render her even more ineffective on the Supreme Court

187. Poverty level highest since 1994

188. Courts run interference for corporate violators of international law

189. Warren named to set up but not to run Consumer Financial Protection Board

190. Chief economic adviser Larry Summers leaves; Obama looks for someone even more pro-business to replace him

191. DOJ IG report goes soft on Bush era surveillance against peace groups and other activists; meanwhile the Obama Administration conducts raids against similar groups

192. Move to put backdoors in the internet to facilitate spying and more requirements on banks on international money transfers of any size

193. HHS Secretary Sebelius delays for at least two years required insurance coverage for contraception

194. Americans on Medicaid increased to 48.5 million in 2009

195. Big home lenders suspend foreclosures as their documentation gets challenged in court

196. HR 3808, a bill passed by Congress, to facilitate the acceptance of false documentation by banks in foreclosure proceedings

197. ICE raids and deportations increase under Obama

198. Social Security COLA frozen for second straight year; no action taken

199. Waivers for military aid to countries with child soldiers

200. Big and deserved losses in the 2010 elections

“Collateral Murder”

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

One of the many things that PFC. Bradley Manning has been accused of is the release of the “Collateral Murder” video which depicted the indiscriminate murder of innocent civilians and two Reuters journalists by an Apache helicopter crew in a suburb of Baghdad. Now former soldiers who were members of the ground troops are coming forward and speaking out about the video, illegal orders and how the media is unfairly depicting Manning to to cover up war crimes. These brave men are calling Manning a hero if he is indeed the person who released that video.

One of the responses was a criticism of how Manning is being used to propagandized the war by journalists, specifically referencing a personal profile of Manning by Stephen Fishman in the New York magazine. The article written by former Army Specialist Ethan McCord, who served in Bravo Company 2-16, the ground troops involved in the “Collateral Murder” video, is published in its entirety by Glenn Greenwald. Here is just a little of what Spec. McCord wrote:

Serving with my unit 2nd battalion 16th infantry in New Baghdad Iraq, I vividly remember the moment in 2007, when our Battalion Commander walked into the room and announced our new rules of engagement:

“Listen up, new battalion SOP (standing operating procedure) from now on: Anytime your convoy gets hit by an IED, I want 360 degree rotational fire. You kill every [expletive] in the street!”

We weren’t trained extensively to recognize an unlawful order, or how to report one. But many of us could not believe what we had just been told to do. Those of us who knew it was morally wrong struggled to figure out a way to avoid shooting innocent civilians, while also dodging repercussions from the non-commissioned officers who enforced the policy. In such situations, we determined to fire our weapons, but into rooftops or abandoned vehicles, giving the impression that we were following procedure.


The video released by WikiLeaks belongs in the public record. Covering up this incident is a matter deserving of criminal inquiry. Whoever revealed it is an American hero in my book.


Fishman removes politics from a story that has everything to do with politics. The important public issues wrapped up with PFC Manning’s case include: transparency in government; the Obama Administration’s unprecedented pursuit of whistle-blowers; accountability of government and military in shaping and carrying out foreign policy; war crimes revealed in the WikiLeaks documents; the catalyzing role these revelations played in democratic movements across the Middle East; and more.

Demonizing and discrediting those who expose the criminality and corruption is now the weapon of choice by journalists and the media that wish to be subservient to a corrupt government. As Greenwald said in his article:

Who needs White House fear-mongers, propagandists, plumbers and character assassins when so many in the establishment press compete so vigorously to perform those functions instead?

Manning is now being held at Ft. Leavenworth, KS after being subjected to months of conditions that amounted to torture in the brig at Quantico Marine Base. The U.N.’s top official on torture, Juan Mendez, announced last December that his office would formally investigate those conditions and has repeated requested private access to talk to Manning. He has been repeatedly refused permission by the Obama administration. Mendez is publicly accusing the Obama administration of violating U.N. rules. Considering the Obama administrations attack on whistle blowers and the continued refusal to prosecute the crimes they expose, they are very likely afraid of what Manning would say to Mendez.

La Marseillaise

Arise, children of the Fatherland,

The day of glory has arrived!

Against us of the tyranny

The bloody banner is raised,

The bloody banner is raised,

Do you hear, in the countryside,

The roar of those ferocious soldiers?

They’re coming right into your arms

To slit the throats your sons and your companions!


To arms, citizens,

Form your battalions,

Let’s march, let’s march!

That tainted blood

Water our furrows!

What does this horde of slaves,

Of traitors and conjured kings want?

For whom are these vile chains,

These long-prepared irons?

These long-prepared irons?

Frenchmen, for us, ah! What outrage

What fury it must arouse!

It is us they dare plan

To return to the old slavery!

Aux armes, citoyens…

What! Foreign cohorts

Would make the law in our homes!

What! These mercenary phalanxes

Would strike down our proud warriors!

Would strike down our proud warriors!

Great God ! By chained hands

Our brows would yield under the yoke

Vile despots would have themselves

The masters of our destinies!

Aux armes, citoyens…

Tremble, tyrants and you traitors

The shame of all parties,

Tremble! Your parricidal schemes

Will finally receive their reward!

Will finally receive their reward!

Everyone is a soldier to combat you

If they fall, our young heroes,

The earth will produce new ones,

Ready to fight against you!

Aux armes, citoyens…

Frenchmen, as magnanimous warriors,

You bear or hold back your blows!

You spare those sorry victims,

Who arm against us with regret.

Who arm against us with regret.

But not these bloodthirsty despots,

These accomplices of Bouillé,

All these tigers who, mercilessly,

Rip their mother’s breast!

Aux armes, citoyens…

Sacred love of the Fatherland,

Lead, support our avenging arms

Liberty, cherished Liberty,

Fight with thy defenders!

Fight with thy defenders!

Under our flags, shall victory

Hurry to thy manly accents,

That thy expiring enemies,

See thy triumph and our glory!

Aux armes, citoyens…

(Children’s Verse)

We shall enter in the (military) career

When our elders are no longer there,

There we shall find their dust

And the trace of their virtues

And the trace of their virtues

Much less jealous to survive them

Than to share their coffins,

We shall have the sublime pride

Of avenging or following them

Aux armes, citoyens…

Countdown with Keith Olbermann

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