Tuesday, July 31, 2007

U.S. fatalities for July 2007

U.S. Fatalities for July totals 78. This compares to 43 for July in 2006. This is almost double that of last year. You are already hearing claims that things are getting better in Iraq from the "surge" strategy, and they are claiming this is coming from harsh critics of the war. Here's the data for July for the past 4 years:

July 2004 54
July 2005 54
July 2006 43
July 2007 78

The chart to the left shows the 4 year totals for the same period Aug-July of each year. Below is the actual data from the chart:

Aug 2003-Jul. 2004 662
Aug. 2004-Jul. 2005 883
Aug. 2005-Jul. 2006 779
Aug. 2006-Jul. 2007 1078

Let there be no doubt as to the trend in U.S Fatalities. Some things may be getting better in Iraq. But the question remains, for whom are things getting better? It certainly isn't for American soldiers and it isn't for most Iraqis. It is only good for those who make money by continuing the war.

As I said in June's posting on U.S. Fatalities, referring to Rep. King (R) from NY:

"when asked do you think (Rep. King) things will be better by September? Rep. King said, "By September we should 'START' to hear things are getting better in Iraq." This is a clue of the strategy that will be employed by the Administration and those sympathizers like Senator Joe Lieberman. The word "start" is the key word to focus on. This most assuredly will mean they will ask for more time, as the strategy is "beginning to work".

Well it is already happening as we enter into the month of August. Listen to the news and the propaganda. Remember, THERE IS NO MILITARY SOLUTION IN IRAQ! Today, Rep. John Murtha will attach a bill to the funding bill that asks that the troops be brought home starting in 60 days. Let's see who votes in the affirmative for that amendment. I'll be watching, will you?

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Saturday, July 28, 2007

Analysis of the President's Executive order on Torture

The Washington Post OP-ED piece on this topic was alarming to say the least. The article was written by two supporters of this President. They support his use of "warrantless wiretaps" and have on most actions in the war on terror. However, this time they say the President has gone too far! Can you believe it? Some familiar and supporting of the Presidents actions see Bush going to far in his latest Executive order on the use of "torture". When I heard about the order I thought and wrote that it was kind of late to put out this Executive Order as 5 years have passed in this war and it is like "closing the barn door after the horse has escaped." But you must read this OP-ED from the Washington Post of July 26, 2007 for yourself before I comment anymore. You can click here to read the full article.

Here's an excerpt:

This is not just about avoiding "torture." The article (Common Article 3 of the Geneva Convention) expressly prohibits "at any time and in any place whatsoever" any acts of "violence to life and person" or "outrages upon personal dignity, in particular, humiliating and degrading treatment."

Last Friday, the White House issued an executive order attempting to "interpret" Common Article 3 with respect to a controversial CIA interrogation program. The order declares that the CIA program "fully complies with the obligations of the United States under Common Article 3," provided that its interrogation techniques do not violate existing federal statutes (prohibiting such things as torture, mutilation or maiming) and do not constitute "willful and outrageous acts of personal abuse done for the purpose of humiliating or degrading the individual in a manner so serious that any reasonable person, considering the circumstances, would deem the acts to be beyond the bounds of human decency."

In other words, as long as the intent of the abuse is to gather intelligence or to prevent future attacks, and the abuse is not "done for the purpose of humiliating or degrading the individual" -- even if that is an inevitable consequence -- the president has given the CIA carte blanche to engage in "willful and outrageous acts of personal abuse."

You see my friends, it really is worse than you can imagine. And unless the Congress takes action to impeach this President and Vice President, we are sanctioning this behavior for future Presidents as a precedent. That is why the Congress, Rep. Conyers and others must have the courage to act, even if theirs is a lone voice.

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Thursday, July 26, 2007

Violence down in Iraq: No, really, says Ambassador Crocker!

I don't know how Ambassador Crocker, U.S. Envoy to Iraq, can claim that given that so far, this month, U.S. fatalities in Iraq total 66 compared to only 43 for the same month last year. But here, in part, is what was reported this morning by STEVEN R. HURST, Associated Press Writer:

BAGHDAD - Washington's top diplomat in Iraq said Thursday that increased U.S. troop strength had brought down violence, but it was impossible to rush political reconciliation or to predict when conditions would allow the United States to begin reducing its involvement.

With less than two months remaining before Ambassador Ryan Crocker and Gen. David Petraeus, the U.S. commander in Iraq, were to report to Congress about progress in Iraq, the top envoy also told The Associated Press that political reconciliation was going to be "a long, hard pull."

"The surge (increase of 30,000 American troops) has done very well indeed in making a difference in security conditions. There's no question, in the Anbar (province) and Baghdad area. But it's not a light switch. You don't just flip something up and everyone is reconciled," Crocker said in an interview in his office in Saddam Hussein's Republican Palace.

Pressed repeatedly on when he thought U.S. troop levels could be reduced and other American involvement might be scaled back, Crocker said: "It's going to take longer than September."

The metric is wrong here. It's more of wishful thinking and propaganda from the Administration for the war. I think the Administration would be well served if they dealt more with where the public is on this topic. They have used up any credibility they had and so even if it were true, many, including myself, won't believe it. Facts don't lie. Check the numbers below for US Fatalities:

July 2006 43, July 2007 66 (so far!)

June 2006 61, June 2007 101

May 2006 69, May 2007 128

April 2006 76, April 2007 104

March 2006 31, March 2007 82

February 2006 55, February 2007 78

January 2006 62, January 2007 83

The "surge" started to be implemented in February and so the net affect is that more U.S. soldiers are dying every day than any way you measure it. If that is a reduction in violence Ambassador Crocker needs to go back to school and study up on basic math.

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Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The same problem resurfaces for President Bush.

Here's a quiz: How do the current conditions on the ground in Iraq have a connection to other problems this President has had in his life?

Yes, they are connected and can be traced back to a problem with alcohol. Many know that when someone has a problem with alcohol, they often go to AA (Alcoholics Anonymous). They are a organization for helping people learn to manage the disease using the famous 12 Step process. The first step of that process is confronting the state of denial an alcoholic first experiences when being confronted by family and/or friends, that they are an alcoholic. It is unfortunate for this President and our country that he never passed the first step of denial. And unfortunately for us, his enablers are VP Dick Cheney and the Republican Senate leadership. Heck, there was even a book written about his "State of Denial" and he still is in denial

We don't have an organization for our Presidents to go to, like AA. The only help they get is every 4 years, when we get to vote them out. But, as we are finding out now, four years seems like eternity, doesn't it.

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Saturday, July 21, 2007

President Bush's colonoscopy results

Well, it's official. After performing the colonoscopy on President Bush, doctors reported finding those elusive Weapons of Mass Destruction, along with an old Richard Clarke briefing titled, " Bin Laden's plan to attack the U.S."

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Incompetence and arrogance; the Bush/Cheney legacy.

You've heard this slogan probably 100 times over the past few years. "We'll stand down when the Iraqis stand up!" Sound familiar? Well here's the latest information on that front and I quote, "Last week, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Peter Pace, said the number of combat-ready Iraqi battalions able to fight independently has dropped from 10 to six in recent months despite an increase in U.S. training efforts."

Now can you see there was never any intention of us leaving Iraq. I like what I heard from Senator Biden which I will paraphrase here. He said if the Administration is so bent on staying in Iraq, have them pack up their sons and daughters and join their parents and fight the war themselves.

Is your frustration with this President and Vice President and their minions as exasperating to you as it is for me? In all my years on this planet having remembered Presidents from Eisenhower to this President, I could never have imagined the level of stubbornness and arrogance and disregard for the rule of law, not only internationally but also the Constitution and the laws to protect us. We must act as a nation and impeach both of them so that no president in the future will ever get us into a war with lies again.

We still have a year and a half to prove we deserve our freedoms. These 2 so called leaders deserve to be impeached. Aren't there any courageous members of Congress willing to advance Articles of Impeachment?!

Oh, and while I'm at it, why does the President pass an Executive order 5 years after the war in Iraq to order not to use cruel and unusual treatment of prisoners? Isn't that like closing the barn door after the horses have left? To me, this is confirmation that they encouraged and condoned torture all these years in violation of our laws and also the Geneva Convention. Anyone have the courage to turn these 2 over to the World Court for prosecution on War Crimes?

So let it be written, so let it be done!

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Friday, July 20, 2007

Iraq War assessment: Waiting for Sept? Try November!

News this morning that states don't wait for September for the assessment as to whether the surge is working, try November! That was reported in comments by Lt. Gen. Raymond Odierno. To quote the article, "In order to do a good assessment I need at least until November," said Odierno, a deputy to Gen. David Petraeus, the U.S. military commander in Iraq."

This Administration will push to extend the date as long as possible so that we remain in Iraq until the end of President Bush's term at the end of 2008. There is no other explanation. He would love to hand it off to Democrats or anyone else so that he can say, "they lost his war." This is the most disgraceful President in U.S. history. His father must hang his head in shame as when he tried to bail him out with the idea of the Iraq Study Group, his son even didn't catch the safety line thrown to him.

To read the entire article above, click here.

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Blood on the hands of Republican Senators: UPDATE 7-20

From July 19, 2007 posting:
Senate Republicans filibustered the Democrats bill to get the troops home from Iraq starting 120 days from the bills enactment and completed by April 2008. Now Senate Republicans have the blood of our soldiers on their hands. Since that Filibuster 5 American soldiers have died. I will keep this tally going forward to remind the Senate of the cost of not stopping this war now that many Republican Senators have asserted they are against the current policy of President Bush but don't have the guts to vote that way.

UPDATE: Since I wrote this piece above a few days ago, the total deaths rose to 12 since Republicans filibustered the Bill put forth by Democrats to bring the troops home. That means the total U.S. Fatalities for July have now surpassed those for July 2006, which was 43. We now stand at 51 with another 12 days left in this month.

Figures don't lie, so don't believe the Bush Administration nor any that say things are getting better. These deaths are not making things better. It is a disgraceful betrayal of our troops by this President and Vice President to all those that serve or have served since they both have not.

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Thursday, July 19, 2007

Senate discusses Pell Grant increase

The Pell Grant program to assist students with financial aid so that they can go to college, is being discussed by Senators. The Bill is sponsored by Sen. Ted Kennedy and others and has the support of most Democrats. However, corporate America and its lobbyists don't want to increase student aid. They prefer to bring immigrants into this country from countries such as India, China and other countries so they can pay cheaper wages. Watch who supports this Bill and who doesn't to see who is on the side of the Middle Class and poorer amongst us. The Bill proposed isn't some huge increase either. They are just trying to get it to the level it was back in the 1970's to help the burden ease somewhat and that so no child is left behind from going to College because they don't have the money.

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Blood on the hands of Republican Senators

Senate Republicans filibustered the Democrats bill to get the troops home from Iraq starting 120 days from the bills enactment and completed by April 2008. Now Senate Republicans have the blood of our soldiers on their hands. Since that Filibuster 5 American soldiers have died. I will keep this tally going forward to remind the Senate of the cost of not stopping this war now that many Republican Senators have asserted they are against the current policy of President Bush but don't have the guts to vote that way.

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Wednesday, July 18, 2007

The Senate debate on the war, casualties and funding

With another 2 weeks remaining in July, we have reached just one short of the 43 total U.S. Fatalities for July 2006. Sad days indeed.

With the Senate falling short of the needed 60 votes, the vote was 52-46 for bringing home the troops within 120 days of the Bill's enactment. The Democrats continually ask fellow Republicans to vote with them, to have the courage to go against the president and his failed policy. But if Democrats had the same courage they would vote to cut off the funds as Rep. John Murtha suggested almost a year ago. I just heard Sen. Biden on the Senate floor saying "as long as there was even just 1 troop in Iraq" that he was in favor of funding them. Senator Biden, that is why you haven't broken into the top tier for President. Your Iraq ideas are sound regarding the only realistic solutions in Iraq and what policy we should be supporting with the Iraqi government. Unfortunately, you ideas here at home regarding funding the troops, sounds more like a Republican or that new Independent, Senator Joe Lieberman.

Joe, change course on this if you truly believe we can't get this President to voluntarily change course in Iraq. Every day that the funding continues from today the Democrats own this war, because they had the tools and the power to stop it and won't. And this, Senator Biden, comes from a supporter and contributor to your Presidential campaign.

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Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Senate readies for an all-nighter.

Led by Majority leader Harry Reed of Nevada and Senator Carl Levin this may be a long night with little accomplished. It is so simple to solve this problem if the Democrats had the courage.

Republican message:
Support the Troops = Fund the Troops + Wait for Gen. Petraeous report in September

Democrats message:
Support the Troops = Set a deadline now for bringing home the troops, as nothing is going to be different in September than it is now.

American public message:
Support the Troops = Cut off funding by not voting to approve the money = Bring the Troops home= Support for the Troops

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Senators Graham and Webb discourse on Meet The Press

The on camera interchange between Senator Jim Webb, D-VA, and Senator Lindsey Graham R-SC, on Meet The Press show with host Tim Russert Sunday showed just how frayed nerves are in this debate about the Iraq war and conditions our troops find themselves in, due to mismanagement of the war by President Bush. Both Senators were testy although Senator Graham surely lost his composure during the exchange. It was obvious they were arguing about 2 different things. Webb was talking about not breaking the Army by having more normal troop rotations and Graham was arguing we must be there to fight Al-Qaeda. Tim Russert let the two argue for a long time without interrupting the conversation. This war is taking its toll back here at home as well, and it's going to get a lot worse between now and September.

To read this interchange and make up your own mind, click here.

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Monday, July 16, 2007

Israel releasing 250 Palestinians as sign of good faith.

The latest progress made on the ground between Israel and the Palestinians comes by Israel announcing it will release 250 prisoners it is holding. All of them are from Fatah, not Hamas, boosting President Mahmoud Abbas. This is real progress and a trust builder and all done without Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's involvement or negotiations on behalf of the two parties.

An excerpt from the story: "The move followed an amnesty deal over the weekend that saw nearly 200 armed fugitives from Abbas' Fatah movement sign pledges renouncing militant activity in return for guarantees that Israel would stop hunting them."

Hopefully this small step will show Palestinians the way forward is to denounce violence and search for peace for all of their families.

To read the entire story by AP writer Laurie Copans, click here.


It looks like President Bush wants to take some credit for some small steps in Israel and is now sending Condoleezza Rice to pull together a Middle East peace conference. Bush wants to get in front of this because if there are some peace overtures and he isn't involved, they might actually achieve some peace. This Administration loves war as they feed "booty" to their buddies through the government no-bid contracts. War, any war, is terrific for business. And if you think I am kidding look at the 2007 Federal Budget for the Dept. of Defense. It was officially $450 Billion, the largest allocation of any other government agencies, including HomeLand Security and is not included in the $450 Billion, and it doesn't include the $10 Billion per month for the Iraq war. Tell me that there's an interest for peace. Ha!

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U.S. Fatalities for the first 2 weeks of July

U.S. Military fatalities for the Iraq war in the first 2 weeks of July totaled 35. For the entire month of July 2006 there was a total of 43 fatalities.

As I said during the second week of June, the hot summer months of June, July and August in Iraq hopefully will keep the death rate down, as it did last year. This is finally bearing out this month, but did not last month, as new records were set. However, we are already at 35 deaths for the first 2 weeks of July and there were only 43 in total for all of July last year. My guess is that we will surpass those numbers. This is all while the Iraqi Parliament gets ready to take the month of August off, because they say it's too hot. They should try to carry a flak jacket and 80 lbs of gear, while trying to find the bad guys out in the sun all day, like our troops are. This is a disgrace. They should "suffer" a little and work to get the accommodations for a true participative government. But that's not what they want. Al-Maliki knows, that if we leave, the Shiites will run the country, without having to share Oil revenue with the Sunni's or Kurds. It appears that's their end game.

Things can't get better without a diplomatic solution and our President and his Secretary of State, Condi, seem to have gone AWOL in that area. Bring the troops home.

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Sunday, July 15, 2007

McCain's campaign implosion tied to Iraq

Senator McCain's campaign implosion over the past week has been diagnosed to be caused by his campaign strategist's errors in trying to make McCain be like Bush. That is a wrong analysis of why McCain's campaign imploded. It did so because of McCain's unyielding position on Iraq and fighting this war to "win". Unfortunately, McCain is really fighting the Vietnam War again this time in Iraq and hoping this time for the victory denied then.

The symptoms of this mental disorder can be traced to his "psychological attachment" to a victorious outcome, which we all know, and have been told repeatedly, that there is no military victory possible in Iraq. In one way, this does mirror Bush, as he too is attached psychologically to his strategy in Iraq. He has no intention to end the war and bring the troops home, as he sees his legacy will be recorded as he was willing to fight the war, while a successor Democrat or Republican President will be blamed for losing his war.

This indeed is a mental illness and the country will be paying the price of this disease for generations to come. Senator McCain, we lost the war in Vietnam but won the long term peace finally after leaving there, and we can do the same in Iraq. Give it up or get some help by a professional, and take this President with you as maybe you can get a discount for therapy for 2 people with the same disease.

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Saturday, July 14, 2007

On PBS today: Bruce Fein and John Nichols case for impeaching both President Bush and VP Cheney

Bill Moyers Journal on PBS today had Constitutional Lawyer extraordinaire, Bruce Fein, conservative, and John Nichols of The Nation, speaking on why we currently have a Constitutional crisis and the medicine is Impeachment of both President Bush and VP Cheney. This is must viewing and will challenge your current beliefs about the tool of Impeachment and why it is so important to Impeach both of them, not to punish them, but to ensure that the freedoms that they have taken from us, will not endure to future Presidents. The arguments are solid and will not offend Republicans nor Democrats who put country above politics. This is the best case ever made for Impeaching this President and VP.

A sample excerpt is below followed by a link to the video feed:

July 13, 2007

A public opinion poll from the American Research Group recently reported that more than four in ten Americans — 45% — favor impeachment hearings for President Bush and more than half — 54% — favored impeachment for Vice President Cheney.
Unhappiness about the war in Iraq isn't the only cause of the unsettled feelings of the electorate. Recent events like President Bush's pardoning of Scooter Libby, the refusal of Vice President Cheney's office to surrender emails under subpoena to Congress and the President's prohibition of testimony of former White House counsel Harriet E. Miers in front of the House Judiciary Committee have caused unease over claims of "executive privilege." In addition, many of the White House anti-terror initiatives and procedures — from the status of "enemy combatants" in Guantanamo to warrantless wiretapping — have come under legal scrutiny in Congress and the courts.

Bill Moyers gets perspective on the role of impeachment in American political life from Constitutional scholar Bruce Fein, who wrote the first article of impeachment against President Bill Clinton, and THE NATION's John Nichols, author of THE GENIUS OF IMPEACHMENT.

"The founding fathers expected an executive who tried to overreach and expected the executive would be hampered and curtailed by the legislative branch... They [Congress] have basically renounced — walked away from their responsibility to oversee and check." — Bruce Fein

"On January 20th, 2009, if George Bush and Dick Cheney are not appropriately held to account this Administration will hand off a toolbox with more powers than any President has ever had, more powers than the founders could have imagined. And that box may be handed to Hillary Clinton or it may be handed to Mitt Romney or Barack Obama or someone else. But whoever gets it, one of the things we know about power is that people don't give away the tools." — John Nichols.

Click here for the page and then click on "Watch Video.

You amy leave comments here only after viewing it.

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Friday, July 13, 2007

You know it's time for U.S troops to leave Iraq when...

We start fighting with the Iraqi Police. That happened today when U.S forces engaged against Iraqi Police forces after earlier U.S. Military forces had arrested a senior Iraqi Police official for "leading an Iranian backed militia cell". U.S. warplanes were brought in against the Iraqi Police forces.

I have said many times that when we can't tell the difference between the good guys and the bad guys, it's time to leave. I hope this latest encounter will spur Republican Senators to reconsider supporting this President's failed strategy and policy. God help our troops. They are led by an incompetent Commander-in-Chief, President Bush, who has never served in combat, but can send our brave young men and women into combat in an Iraqi Civil War without having a guilty conscience.

Bring home the troops or hundreds of thousands will be marching in the streets soon as we did in the Vietnam war!

To read the complete report click here.

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Monday, July 09, 2007

Where's Condoleezza Rice? (Update below)

With all the talk that we can't win militarily in Iraq and that we need a diplomatic solution, where's Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice hiding? Has anyone seen her in the past 30-45 days? Could it be she went back to Stanford to teach summer courses, or is she taking a long needed vacation with the Iraqi parliament this summer?

With the Congress ready to bring up some Amendments to the funding of the war Bills to include endorsing the Iraqi Study Group recommendations for a diplomatic push to involve Iran, Syria and other neighbors of Iraq, Condi isn't to be found anywhere. But then again, she has had plenty of time to get those parties to the table to discuss diplomatic solutions to end the violence. We may need someone other than Condi for this as she is reminding me daily of FEMA's "Brownie".

UPDATE: July 12, 2007 As reported by newKerala.com the latest news on Condi:

"No show for Rice at ASEAN meeting?

Bangkok, July 12: US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is expected to cancel her scheduled attendance at this month's meeting of South-East Asia foreign ministers in Manila, Thai media reports said Thursday.

The cancellation has disappointed the member countries of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) as the ministerial meeting was intended to strengthen ties between the US and the regional grouping, a Bangkok-based diplomat told the Nation newspaper.

The source blamed Rice's no-show on rising criticisms in the US of the Iraqi quagmire, which has forced all US cabinet ministers to remain close to home.

President George W. Bush cancelled his scheduled attendance at the ASEAN-US friendship meeting in Singapore last week. Singapore will host the annual ASEAN summit in November, which the US president may attend.

ASEAN, a four-decades old regional grouping, includes Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
--- IANS"

Anyone seen Condi? Please add a comment.

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Sunday, July 08, 2007

U.S. Fatalities for the first week of July 2007

There were 27 deaths in this first week in July.

In the first week of March we had 24 fatalities.
In the first week of April we had 28 fatalities.
In the first week of May we had 27 fatalities.
In the first week of June we had 28 fatalities.

While the numbers for July look comparable to the past 4 months, it is deceiving because July has tended to be a month with less casualties, as the table below shows.

July 2003 48
July 2004 54
July 2005 54
July 2006 43

We already have 27 in the first 7 days this month and so this will be another record month unfortunately. If you look at the chart above, you will see the 4 years of the war totalled from Aug. to July of each year, so that the comparisons are the same. The trend continues to grow. And the last point on the chart shows data included for July of 2007 with the 27 casualties, and you know that number is going to increase, and the slope of the line will go up steeper.

Republican Senator's Richard Lugar and Pete Domenici know that this surge is only a temporary thing and that the price of continuing with this strategy will cost America its blood and treasure without realizing any benefits for us, nor for the Iraqis. The Democrats must also choose a different strategy, as we are also getting impatient with them and many of us are beginning to see them as part of the problem as well. This next election may be the time for a complete change in both parties and electing those who will do the bidding of the overwhelming majority (70-75%) of Americans saying people want the troops brought home. It's right for America AND for Iraq and the sooner the better, as both Lugar and Domenici realized this in their breaking with the President and Vice President this past week. Wake up America and get involved or you don't deserve your freedoms.

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Saturday, July 07, 2007

Michael Moore's "Sicko": A review

I saw the movie today with my wife. While it certainly contained necessary humor, there was nothing funny about the movie. This is dead serious stuff and if we don't stand up and do something to make Universal Healthcare a reality, we are going to hate ourselves as we aren't going to be taken care of properly in our old age. I cried several times as I saw the suffering of people with many serious ailments who were turned away or denied care. And yet the comparison to Great Britain's National Healthcare System, as well as that of France's and Canada's, made me wonder what happened to us that we gave away our rights on healthcare many years ago. It's time to reclaim them. And if it takes marching in the streets, raising our voices to get the attention to this that must be given and we stay disengaged, then we and our families, deserve a lonely, suffering life. Wake up America. We're asleep at the wheel and are about to crash! Do yourself and your family a favor, see the movie and bring a friend. It is Michael Moore's finest film as well as the most sobering and realistic one of his career. Bravo Michael, you're a true American hero! I know some of these Healthcare Executives and they should hang their head in shame with the amount of money they took as compensation, during their stewardship.

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Thursday, July 05, 2007

An unpatriotic 4th of July

Memories of past July 4ths didn't resonate with me this year. It was troubling to say the least. I spent some time wondering why I had this sick feeling in my stomach and finally understood why I had this unsettling trauma. It was because this year, for the first time in my life, I felt that the American people and our elected officials have let me down. I haven't felt patriotic about our freedoms much, over the past 7 years, I have seen these freedoms trashed by a President and VP who have no concern for the heritage of our country and its way of life. They wanted to go back to the days when we had a King and they anointed themselves Co-Kings. So when the parade in my town began, I watched the Fire Department lead the parade with its engines blasting sirens, the Medics in their Emergency vehicles and some local Emergency Response teams pass by. I admire them all and have become a first responder in an emergency in my community and I try to learn what I can from them to help my local community in an unforseen emergency. But after they passed, I turned and went home, realizing, that for me, the idea of our freedom and the patriotic feelings I once had, were gone. All because of our Co-Kings, Bush and Cheney, and a seemingly paralyzed Congress, where Republicans dare to support both of them still, even after all their failings. Keith Obermann of MSNBC said it best referring to Bush and Cheney when he said, "They should both resign".

The Congress hasn't the guts to do the right thing. Good people like Senators Dianne Feinstein, Joe Biden, Richard Lugar, John Warner, and others, are too afraid to spend time on removing them from office. They believe to do this correctly would take too much time. It really doesn't. All they have to do is to ask for a vote of impeachment. No need for a trial in the Congress or Senate. Their duplicity is well known in many violations of the Constitution and the Geneva Convention. Just have the vote and see who has guts. The ones that don't should all be removed from office. We are all held hostge by our own elected officials as they will not do the correct thing and move this issue to the front burner putting their own needs for getting reelected after those of their country and their constituents.

Now you know why I didn't feel so patriotic yesterday. Something has been lost and the American people are fast asleep at the switch. Shame, shame for the country, its history and its politic.

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Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Beverly Sills, now singing for God

The great legend and Opera singer extraordinaire, has passed on to her most important singing engagement, this time for God. Beverly Sills was grand, classy, yet a down to earth woman, that will be missed, especially by the children she helped come to love music and her.

I had the good fortune to meet Beverly at a benefit dinner for the Hugh O’Brian Foundation, in Los Angeles, about 20 years ago and sat next to her during the dinner. I asked her how she got started in music. She told me that her mother took her to radio stations and begged for the owners to give her daughter a chance to sing. After pestering them over many weeks and months, one finally gave her a chance when she was about 5 or 6 years old. When a surprised owner was brought to tears hearing her voice and radio listeners couldn't believe what a truly gifted voice she had and called the station giving much praise, that was the beginning of her music career. I think that is why she gave back so much to children, as her Mom did to her. The world will be a little bit more empty without her.

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Monday, July 02, 2007

Libby must report to Jail- Court rules. UPDATE below

Federal Appeals Court rules Scooter Libby must go to jail. His name has been officially changed to fit the new digs he will soon occupy: federal inmate No. 28301-016. Scooby Doo, they got Scooter too!

To read the story click here.

I can't think of a better story to post on this, my 500th posting!

UPDATE: The euphoria was very short lived as President Bush has granted immunity to Scooter Libby so he doesn't have to spend even one day in prison. I'll bet President Bush, and especially VP Cheney, are happy they did this, as they hope some day if they are ever brought up on War Crimes at the World Court, that some of their influential Republican base members will try to get them a pardon there, as a quid pro quo for helping Libby.

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Sunday, July 01, 2007

U.S. fatalities for June 2007

U.S. Fatalities for June totals 101. This compares to 61 for June in 2006. This is almost double that of last year. You will see claims that things are getting better in Iraq from the "surge" strategy. Here's the data for June for the past 4 years:

June 2003 30
June 2004 42
June 2005 78
June 2006 61
June 2007 101

The chart above shows the 4 year totals for the same period July-June of each year. Below is the actual data from the chart:

Jul 2003-Jun. 2004 656
Jul. 2004-Jun. 2005 883
Jul. 2005-Jun. 2006 790
Jul. 2006-Jun. 2007 1043

Let there be no doubt as to the trend up in U.S Fatalities. If we continue using the current ineffective, fatal, strategy, the numbers will escalate, as they did in Vietnam. Don't believe things are getting better in Iraq. It's about the Oil there!

I heard Rep. King (R) from NY this morning on CNN. When asked do you think things will be better by September? Rep. King said, "By September we should 'START' to hear things are getting better in Iraq." This is a clue of the strategy that will be employed by the Administration and those sympathizers like Senator Joe Lieberman. The word "start" is the key word to focus on. This most assuredly will mean they will ask for more time, as the strategy is "beginning to work". Don't be fooled or shame on you. There is no desire to leave Iraq. Only we can make that happen by raising our collective voices. Bring the troops home!

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