January 10, 2009
The prince, who is third in line to the throne, made the comments in footage shot while training as an officer at the Sandhurst military academy in 2006, a year after being forced to make a public apology for wearing a Nazi swastika at a fancy dress party.
In the film, the 24-year-old prince calls an officer from the Pakistani army, who was on the course with him, "our little Paki friend" and, when he sees another officer cadet wearing a camouflage veil, exclaims: "Fuck me, you look like a raghead." He also mocks the Queen - the commander-in-chief of the British army - during a pretend mobile phone call to the late Queen Mother. Continue...
I really don't see what the fuss is, it really isn't that bad:
Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) - You never know who you might find at Ben's Chili Bowl, the venerable diner in Washington's U Street district. Even a president-elect.
Barack Obama dropped in Saturday afternoon for a bite to eat with Washington's mayor, Adrian Fenty.
They ordered a house specialty, a Chili Half-Smoke—a quarter-pound half pork and beef smoked sausage on a steamed bun with mustard, onions and chili sauce. They also picked up some chili-topped french fries and ice tea.
Ben's Chili Bowl celebrated its 50th anniversary last summer. Asked if this was his first visit, Obama replied: "It is, actually, and it was terrific."
(AFP) Outgoing US Vice President Dick Cheney Friday did not give up hope of capturing or killing Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, with only 11 days left before Barack Obama moves into the White House.
"We've got a few days left yet," Cheney told CNN when asked why bin Laden or Al-Qaeda number two Ayman al-Zawahiri continue to elude US capture.
Cheney was quick to say he was unaware of any impending strike on bin Laden, but suggested the Islamist leader was not effectively in control of his organization.
"We would like very much to capture or kill Osama bin Laden, but my guess is at this point, he's operating in an area that's very difficult, very hard to get to, that he's not an effective leader at this stage," he said.
It was hard to target Al-Qaeda without bin Laden "coming out of whatever hole he's hiding in," Cheney said.
The US military operation in the "war on terror" had other big priorities, he added.
"A much more important problem is keeping the country safe. And we've done that now for seven and a half years," he said.
After Obama's inauguration to the US presidency on January 20, Cheney was also confident the mission to capture bin Laden will continue.
"I'm sure the hunt will go on after we leave," he said.
Cheney also defended the controversial terror surveillance and interrogation programs in the US-led "war on terror."
"A much bigger problem, a much more important problem is keeping the country safe. And we've done that now for seven and a half years," Cheney argued.
"All those steps we took in the aftermath of 9/11, have had, I think, a remarkable impact, and that there has not been another mass casualty attack on the United States since 9/11. That's a great achievement."
The sagging economy has triggered a sharp decline in the number of women getting breast implants. Maura Moynihan on why a smaller cup size is good for America.
Is there a causal pathway linking the simultaneous collapse of Wall Street, the Republican Party, and the porn boob? Plastic surgery, last year's growth industry, has shrunk as fast as News Corp. stock.
The coverage in the downturn of plastic surgery is filled with alarm and concern over falling profits. Doctors speak of turning business around; it's just a temporary drop in consumer confidence; when people get back on their financial feet, they'll be coming in for nips and tucks.
I have yet to read an article anywhere that suggests that a reallocation of income, from boob jobs to, say, food, might be a return to sanity.
In the Bush years, the plastic surgery bubble seemed a.......
How Bout a Snapple a pack of gum and a loaf of bread.
Five of the Somali pirates who released a hijacked oil-laden Saudi supertanker drowned with their share of a reported $3 million ransom after their small boat capsized, a pirate and port town resident said Saturday.
Pirate Daud Nure says the boat with eight people on board overturned in a storm after dozens of pirates left the Sirius Star following a two-month standoff in the Gulf of Aden that ended Friday.
He said five people died and three people reached shore after swimming for several hours. Daud Nure was not part of the pirate operation but knew those involved.
Jamal Abdulle, a resident of the Somali coastal town of Haradhere, close to where the ship had been anchored, also confirmed that the boat sank and that the eight's portion of the ransom money that had been shared among dozens of pirates was lost.
Saudi Arabian oil minister Ali Naimi said Saturday that the crew of the Sirius Star was safe and that the tanker had left Somali territorial waters and was on its way home.
A Saudi Oil Ministry official said the ship was headed for Dammam, on Saudi Arabia's Gulf coast, but gave no estimated time of arrival. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the press.
The Liberian-flagged ship is owned by Vela International Marine Ltd., a subsidiary of Saudi oil company Aramco. A spokesman for the Dubai-based Vela, Mihir Sapru, would not provide details of the ship's destination or plans once in port.
"We are very relieved to know that all the crew members are safe and I am glad to say that they are all in good health and high spirits," said a statement by Saleh K'aki, president and CEO of Vela. "This has been a very trying time for them and certainly for their families. We are very happy to report to their families that they will be on their way home soon."
K'aki added that the "throughout this ordeal, our sole objective was the safe and timely release of the crew. That has been achieved today."
U.S. Navy photos released Friday showed a parachute, carrying what was described as "an apparent payment," floating toward the tanker. The Sirius Star and its 25-member crew had been held since Nov. 15. Its cargo of crude oil was valued at US$100 million at the time.
The capture was seen as a dramatic demonstration of the pirates' ability to strike high value targets hundreds of miles offshore.
On the same day the Saudi ship was freed, pirates released a captured Iranian-chartered cargo ship, Iran's state television reported Saturday. It said the ship Delight was carrying 36 tons of wheat when it was attacked in the Gulf of Aden Nov. 18 and seized by pirates. All 25 crew are in good health and the vessel is sailing toward Iran, the TV report said.
The pirate-infested Gulf of Aden is one of the world's busiest shipping routes.
The U.S. Navy announced this week it will head a new anti-piracy task force after more than 100 ships were attacked last year. NATO and the European Union already have warships patrolling the Gulf of Aden and have intervened to prevent several ships from being captured.
More than a dozen ships with about 300 crew members are still being held by pirates off the coast of Somalia, including the weapons-laden Ukrainian cargo ship MV Faina, which was seized in September.
The multimillion dollar ransoms are one of the few ways to earn a living in the impoverished, war-ravaged country. Somalia has not had a functioning government since 1991 and nearly half of its population depends on aid.
The incoming Obama administration will not abandon US President George W. Bush's doctrine of isolating Hamas, the chief national security spokesperson of the Obama transition team has told The Jerusalem Post.
US President-elect Barack Obama "has repeatedly stated that he believes that Hamas is a terrorist organization dedicated to Israel's destruction, and that we should not deal with them until they recognize Israel, renounce violence, and abide by past agreements," said Brooke Anderson in a statement to the Post.
Those conditions match the international Quartet's longstanding demands from Hamas, shared by Israel.
The Obama spokesperson was responding to....
WASHINGTON (AP) - President-elect Barack Obama is planning to honor one-time rival John McCain at a dinner on the eve of his inauguration.
Obama's inaugural committee said Saturday it has planned three dinners across Washington to honor leaders who worked across party lines. Republican McCain, Democratic Vice President-elect Joe Biden and former Secretary of State Colin Powell, also a Republican, are set to be honored Jan. 19.
Obama says the dinners will honor Americans who put their country ahead of their political party. That bipartisanship is a central theme of Obama's campaign and transition to power.
Powell, who served in Republican President George W. Bush's Cabinet, endorsed Obama's presidential campaign over McCain's bid.
January 9, 2009
The prosecutor's office announced the indictment on its Web site on the final day of a four-month grand jury session in which a City Council member and a prominent developer who once dated the mayor were indicted on public corruption charges.
Dixon's attorneys say they and the mayor will make statements later this afternoon.
WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge on Friday rejected the Bush administration's latest attempt to keep secret the identities of White House visitors and declared that it engaged in illegal record-keeping practices.
U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth concluded that the practices in dispute took place before October 2004 when the Secret Service transferred large numbers of entry and exit logs to the White House and then deleted internal Secret Service copies of them.
The practices ended, the judge said, after various private organizations went to court in an effort to gain access to the logs.
Lamberth's ruling brushed aside the government's argument that revealing Secret Service logs would impede the president's ability to perform his constitutional duties.
The court said that the likelihood of harm is not great enough to justify curtailing the public disclosure goals of the Freedom of Information Act.
A watchdog group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, asked for the records to determine whether nine conservative religious leaders visited the White House and Vice President Dick Cheney's residence in October 2006.
Lamberth's decision means the government will have to find other legal grounds if it wants to block release of the Secret Service logs.
While the case was a setback for the Bush White House, the effect of the administration's claim of a presidential communications privilege succeeded in dragging out the lawsuit filed in October 2006.
The administration's request to extend the presidential communications privilege to Secret Service logs is inconsistent with other decisions by the federal courts in Washington, D.C., the judge said.
Secret Service logs have been used in investigations by both Congress and federal prosecutors. For example, the logs have revealed the comings and goings of various White House visitors, including Monica Lewinsky and Clinton campaign donor Denise Rich, the wife of fugitive financier Marc Rich, who received a pardon in the closing hours of the Clinton administration.
In the midst of the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal in the spring of 2006, the White House and the Secret Service quietly signed an agreement declaring that records identifying visitors to the White House are not open to the public.
Four months later, Cheney's office told the Secret Service in a letter that visitor records for the vice president's personal residence "are and shall remain subject to the exclusive ownership, custody and control of OVP."
The case over the Secret Service logs is one of many legal battles in which the Bush White House resisted disclosure. Some others:
_Cheney's refusal, eventually supported by the courts, to identify the energy executives and lobbyists he met with in forging a pro-industry energy policy in 2001.
_The White House's refusal to turn over to Congress documents on the politically tinged firings of nine U.S. attorneys, some of whom were investigating Republican politicians.
_A lawsuit in which CREW is seeking White House documents detailing problems with the White House's e-mail system.
In fact, Mrs. Robinson is already in town, helping to smooth the family’s personal transition as Mr. Obama, his wife, Michelle, and their two daughters prepare for new lives at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.“She is here to help them get up and running,’’ said Katie McCormick Lelyveld, a spokeswoman for Mrs. Obama. “She will determine in the coming months whether or not she wants to stay in D.C. permanently.”
Take that far-right conservative Muslim smearing jerks.......
President-elect Barack Obama has requested that the words “so help me God” be added to the end of the oath of office to be administered by Chief Justice John Roberts on Inauguration Day.
That confirmation came in an affidavit filed today by Roberts' court counselor in a pending lawsuit by an atheist opposed to any mention of God in the inaugural ceremonies. Roberts said he would abide by Obama’s wishes.
The Constitution has specific language on what has to be said when swearing in the president, but the “so help me God” phrase has traditionally been added at the end of the required oath, starting with George Washington in 1789.
Some prominent foodies have been clamoring for change in the White House kitchen. But President-elect Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, have decided that Cristeta Comerford, the executive chef at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, will stay put, a transition official said on Thursday.Ms. Comerford, the first woman to hold the executive chef post, has been in the job since 2005. And some gourmands have argued that that is long enough. Ruth Reichl, the editor of Gourmet magazine, sent a letter to Mr. Obama, along with restaurateurs Alice Waters and Danny Meyer, offering to help him select someone new for the job. Ms. Reichl said the White House could use a chef who cooks local and organic foods and picks some of it from the presidential garden.
But a transition official said.......
My question is who is this Patterson guy who voted against the impeachment?
SPRINGFIELD---In a historic vote, the Illinois House has impeached Gov. Rod Blagojevich, directing the Senate to put the state’s 40th chief executive on trial with the goal of removing him from office.
The vote by the House was 114-1 and marks the first time in the state's 190-year history that a governor has been impeached, despite Illinois' longstanding reputation for political corruption.
Rep. Milt Patterson (D-Chicago) was the lone.......
January 8, 2009
I guess when you pull the race card when it makes no sense, this is what you get:
Police said a piece of mail with threatening writing was received around noon to the Democratic congressman's office, 700 E. 79th St., but its contents were not immediately disclosed. No injuries were reported.
Toure Muhammad, a Rush spokesman,said the substance in the letter was thought to be an artificial sweetener and authorities confiscated the letter. Muhammad said the office employee who opened the letter saw a racial slur and a threat to bomb the congressman's office.
Police could not comment on the letter's contents.
Fire department spokesman Larry Langford said after checking out the office employees who opened the mail and testing the powder, the situation was turned over to authoritieswho began an investigation.
"As far as we know, there was no reason or inspiration given in the letter," Muhammad said.
-- Dan P. Blake
These media figures, some of whom occasionally pretend to be journalists, have spewed such accusations repeatedly, without offering any proof whatsoever -- in plain contradiction of the available facts. Not only is there no evidence that Franken or his campaign "cheated" in any way during the election or the recount, but there is ample reason to believe that the entire process was fair, balanced and free from partisan taint. Continue.....
Sarah Palin's interview with conservative pollster/ filmmaker/ statistician / jackass John Ziegler made claims that the media is seemingly easier on Caroline Kennedy than they were on her. She believes it is because the main stream media is liberal and Caroline Kennedy is a far left liberal.
Well actually all of the above is true. Now I will help Ms. Palin realize why Ms. Kennedy isn't receiving as much criticism as she did during the presidential campaign:
Caroline Kennedy background:
- Has grownup in the media spotlight since her father John F. Kennedy became president in 1961.
- She is running for a senate seat and not second in command of the free world.
- She graduated in the top ten percent of her class at Columbia Law after her A.B. from Harvard vs. attending five colleges and university before receiving her B.A. as did Palin.
- Kennedy is an attorney, writer, editor and serves on the boards of numerous non-profit organizations. She helped raise more than $65 million for the New York public schools. She currently serves as one of two vice chairs of the board of directors of The Fund for Public Schools. She is a member of the New York and Washington, D.C. bar associations. She is also a member of the boards of directors of the Commission on Presidential Debates and the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and is an honorary chair of the American Ballet Theatre. In addition, Kennedy is currently president of the Kennedy Library Foundation. She is also an adviser to the Harvard Institute of Politics..... all of this as a private citizen.
So Sarah please stop the "whole world is against me routine" and work on repairing the damage that was done by one of the worst campaigns ever run.
Minneapolis attorney Tom Kelly said today they concluded that the state Supreme Court would not accept a petition for further review of the case, so it would be a futile exercise. He says that means the legal wrangling in the case is over.
Today was the 30-day deadline for Craig to ask the high court to review a Minnesota Court of Appeals decision that went against him.
The Idaho Republican was arrested in 2007 by an undercover police officer who was conducting a sting operation against men cruising for gay sex at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. The senator quietly pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct and paid a fine, but changed his mind after word of his arrest became public. He insisted he was innocent and that he was not gay. He did not seek re-election.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President-elect Barack Obama named Tim Kaine as head of the Democratic Party on Thursday, rewarding an early supporter with a high-profile political post even as he continues to serve as Virginia governor.
Kaine, 50, was a finalist to be Obama's vice presidential running mate. His support on the campaign trail helped Obama win Virginia, the first time a Democratic presidential candidate carried the state since 1964.
Obama said Kaine shared his liberal but pragmatic outlook and willingness to try new approaches, and said he had improved traffic, schools and other issues for Virginia residents.
"He understands that while politics is tough and we need to fight hard for ideals and our values, we also need to work together to solve our common problems," Obama said at a news conference.
As chairman of the Democratic National Committee, Kaine will be an important advocate for Obama as he tries to pass a an economic stimulus package and pull U.S. troops out of Iraq.
Kaine's term as governor continues through January 2010, and state law does not allow him to run for a second term.
Some Virginia Republicans have complained that Kaine will be neglecting his duties as governor at a time when the state struggles with a $3 billion shortfall and will take on a far more partisan role as leader of the Democratic Party.
Kaine has said he would be able to do both jobs.
Kaine will also try to extend a winning streak that saw Democrats win control of Congress in 2006, and widen their margins in both chambers and win the White House in November. Democrats have also won a string of victories at the state and local level.
As head of the party, Kaine said he hopes to promote Obama's agenda and extend some of his signature tactics, such as soliciting small-dollar contributions from a broad base rather than relying solely on large contributors.
Kaine said his nuts-and-bolts approach helped him succeed in a state long dominated by Republicans. "We're not the ideologues, the obstructionists, the gridlock folks. We're the problem solvers," he said.
Democratic National Committee members will vote on Kaine's selection at their winter meeting on January 21. He will replace former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean.
My favorite little lady from Wasilla, Alaska Sarah Palin graced conservative pollster John Ziegler who we last saw losing his mind at Nate Silver over a weird poll he conducted with myriad foundational logic deficiencies.
Ms. Palin in my opinion continues to separate herself from independents and borderline democrats and even some conservatives by giving interviews that basically blame the liberal media for her bad interviews or how she was portrayed. Basically a sore loser. She says in the interview, "I've been interested to see how Caroline Kennedy will be handled and if she will be handled with kid gloves or if she will be under such a microscope. ... It's going to be interesting to see how that plays out and I think that as we watch that we will perhaps be able to prove that there is a class issue here also that was such a factor in the scrutiny of my candidacy versus, say, the scrutiny of what her candidacy may be."
So in so many words she hopes Caroline Kennedy who is only running for a senate seat and not second in command of the free world is discriminated against like she claims to have been, nice.
I really hope that the republican party is smart enough not to nominate this woman if she chooses to run for the White House in 2012. On second thought let her run,
No, well that's because he became somewhat of a celebrity during and after his appointment had been fulfilled. I read conservative websites who made fun of the possibility of Sanjay Gupta becoming the next King of doctors, and wondered why.
It is simply because everyone knows him and he is on television. He is no more unqualified than any other former Surgeon General, although his experience is not as vast as there's. There is one reason for that is his age. He was not born in 1916 like Koop. He did not have to wait sixty years for the appointment.
Most people don't even know what the hell the Surgeon General does, just that Gupta is not qualified enough.
The man has been a strong advocate for health reform and healthcare in general, and his media status would only make his job easier and more in the spotlight.
Why in this country does youth somehow equals unqualified? We have a congress full of senior citizens that have allowed this country to run itself into the ground and yet anyone with youth or a fresh young face like Obama, Palin or Gupta do we say they don't have experience. I don't' even like Palin.......but still.
With the estimated crowd size from 1 to 3 million, why in the hell would anyone even want to venture into Washington D.C. for this. I will check it out on TV from the comfort of my Lazy-Boy.
ABC News Reporting:
Virtually every major bridge heading into the nation's capital on Inauguration Day will be closed to vehicular traffic. In other words, unless they are on a bus or in an authorized vehicle, riders will be turned away by the police or the military.
That announcement came from the United States Secret Service, which is the organization tasked with handling security for the inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th president of the United States.
The reasons for all the controls over traffic became clear Wednesday night as ABC News learned of a new security bulletin regarding the inauguration. Continue Reading.....
January 7, 2009
The three men -- two of them aged 18 and one 21 -- are charged with hate crime conspiracy and face up to 10 years in prison if found guilty.
Prosecutors accuse the trio of attacks against "African-Americans in retaliation for president-elect Barack Obama's election victory" on November 4, the Justice Department said.
Obama, whose father came from Kenya and whose mother was white, is the first African-American to win the presidency.
The Justice Department says the trio drove around late on election day, after Obama's victory had been announced, in search of blacks.
One allegedly shouted "Obama!" as they attacked a teenager with a metal pipe and police baton in Staten Island, south of Manhattan.
The next victim was an African-American whom they allegedly pushed to the ground. They then "accosted a Latino man, demanding to know for whom he had voted."
The final victim, prosecutors allege, was a man they "mistakenly believed to be African-American."
One of the defendants "hit him with the car, causing the victim to be thrown onto the hood of the car and into the front windshield, shattering it. Although the victim survived, he was in a coma for a period of time after the attack," the Justice Department said.
Full press release by DOJ follows:
The Department of Justice announced today the unsealing of an indictment charging three Staten Island, N.Y., men with conspiring to assault African-Americans in retaliation for President-Elect Barack Obama's election victory.
Ralph Nicoletti and Michael Contreras, both 18, and Brian Carranza, 21, were arrested late Tuesday and are scheduled for arraignment today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Roanne L. Mann inBrooklyn. As alleged in the indictment and other court filings, on the night of Nov. 4, 2008, shortly after learning of Barack Obama's election victory, the group, along with a fourth friend, decided to find African-Americans to assault.
"It is shocking and sobering that allegations of racial violence continue in this day and age," said Acting Assistant Attorney General Grace Chung Becker. "The Justice Department takes these allegations very seriously and the Civil Rights Division, working with U.S. Attorneys Offices across the country, will continue to use federal laws to prosecute individuals who conspire to commit such acts of violence and intimidation."
As cited in the indictment and other court filings, Nicoletti allegedly drove the other defendants to Park Hill, a predominantly African-American neighborhood in Staten Island, where they came upon a 17-year-old African-American who was walking home after watching the election at a friend's house. One of the defendants yelled "Obama!" as they passed the youth, and all four men then got out of the car and beat him, using a metal pipe and a collapsible police baton. The young man, who managed to escape and run home, suffered injuries to his head and legs.
The group then found an African-American man in the Port Richmond section of Staten Island and assaulted him, pushing him to the ground. The defendants also accosted a Latino man, demanding to know for whom he had voted, and later yelled profanities about Obama as they drove past an Election Night gathering of African-Americans at a hair salon.
The group's final assault involved a man they mistakenly believed to be African-American, whom they spotted walking along Blackford Avenue in Port Richmond. Nicoletti hit him with the car, causing the victim to be thrown onto the hood of the car and into the front windshield, shattering it. Although the victim survived, he was in a coma for a period of time after the attack.
The charges announced today are merely allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted, each faces a sentence of up to 10 years in prison.
In addition to Becker, the charges were announced by Benton J. Campbell,United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, Mark J. Mershon, Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office, and Raymond W. Kelly, Commissioner of the New York City Police Department.
"Violence and intimidation aimed at interfering with the constitutional rights of every citizen, including the right to vote, which is the bedrock of democracy, will not be tolerated," stated United States Attorney Campbell. "Such conduct is loathsome and despicable, and those who engage in it will be arrested and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. We are grateful for our partnership with the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, Criminal Section, the FBI, and the New York City Police Department, which has been vital to the success of this joint investigation and prosecution."
FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Demarest stated, "The defendants, motivated by racial animus, committed violent assaults resulting in real, and in one case near-fatal, injuries. But the Election Night assaults, coming on the day when we participate most directly in our democracy, were also an attack on the democratic process and an affront to everyone. The FBI is committed to civil rights enforcement and policing hate crimes."
NYPD Commissioner Kelly stated, "I want to commend the NYPD detectives and their federal partners who pursued this case, particularly NYPD Inspector Michael J. Osgood, who as Commanding Officer of the NYPD Hate Crime Task Force had the foresight to assign a special team on Election Night until 4 a.m. the next morning. These officers were able to respond quickly to the bias attacks and begin an immediate investigation. They located an eyewitness to one of the attacks, and their subsequent distribution of flyers in the Rosebank area of Staten Island over three days led to the first major break in the case. History was made on Election Day. We wanted to make sure those who tried to retaliate did not escape justice."
The government's case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Pamela K. Chen and Margo K. Brodie and Special Litigation Counsel Kristy Parker.
The Ohio man who became a household name during the presidential campaign says he is heading to Israel as a war correspondent for the conservative Web site pjtv.com.
Samuel J. Wurzelbacher (WUR'-zuhl-bah-kur) says he'll spend 10 days covering the fighting.
He tells WNWO-TV in Toledo that he wants to let Israel's "'Average Joes' share their story."
Wurzelbacher gained attention during the final weeks of the campaign when he asked Barack Obama about his tax plan.
He later joined Republican John McCain on the campaign trail. At one stop, he agreed with a McCain supporter who asked if he believed a vote for Obama was a vote for the death of Israel.
The associated press is reporting that a press conference coming today will announce that the Senate democrats will accept Roland Burris to Barack Obama's former senate seat. This is a dramatic turn from just a week ago when Harry Reid and other democratic leaders said they would not accept his nomination.
So after all the media circus that we have seen over the past week, this all comes to a resolution without the big confrontation we thought we might see.
It will be near impossible for Burris to re-elected again even though I am sure he will try. It is not because he is un-qualified for the seat, it is because there will be several candidates who are political heavyweights in Illinois that will take him out easily.
Of course republicans will do their jobs by saying the democrats caved and did not allow the citizens of Illinois to choose who they wanted for representation. I think they are right in some ways. A special election would have ended it all. The one problem is the millions it would take to have one, and the extremely low turnout you would have after the exhausting presidential run.
The weather in Chicago is bad right now also.
Let old man Burris have his time in the sun, so he can add this to his monument of accomplishments.
January 6, 2009
Prosecutors said 44-year-old Rajini Narayan confessed to neighbors that she set her husband on fire on Dec. 8, 2008, after she saw him hug another woman.
She was initially charged with endangering life and arson but the charges were upgraded to murder after her 47-year-old husband, Satish Narayan, died from his injuries last week.
Prosecutor Lucy Boord said Narayan told neighbors she was a "jealous wife" but she hadn't meant to kill him when she doused the sleeping man's genitals with an alcohol-based solvent and then set him on fire.
Boord quoted Narayan allegedly saying: "I just wanted to burn his penis so it belongs to me and no one else. ... I didn't mean this to happen."
The husband jumped out of bed and knocked over the bottle of alcohol, causing the fire to spread and resulting in 1 million Australian dollars ($711,000) of damage to their town house and an adjacent property, the Adelaide Advertiser reported.
"She poses a substantial risk to others given her flagrant offending," Boord told the newspaper.
"Witnesses also heard the accused make references to using a police officer's gun on herself, and references to whether she should be alive at all," she added.
Narayan was remanded in custody for psychological assessment and will reappear in court Friday. She has been charged with murder, arson and three counts of endangering life, as the couple's three children were at home during the incident.
The speech was played over a background presentation of two pictures; one showing al Zawahiri, dressed in a the traditional white Jilaba and turban, the other showed a Palestinian child apparently killed in the recent fighting in Gaza. The 10-minute tape is titled “The Massacre of Gaza and the Siege of the Traitors.”
Al Zawahiri opened his......
President-elect Barack Obama has offered the job of surgeon general to Dr. Sanjay Gupta, the neurosurgeon and correspondent for CNN and CBS, according to two sources with knowledge of the situation.
Gupta has told administration officials that he wants the job, and the final vetting process is under way. He has asked for a few days to figure out the financial and logistical details of moving his family from Atlanta to Washington but is expected to accept the offer.
Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was elected Speaker of the House for another term on Tuesday, receiving the unanimous support of the Democratic Caucus for the second consecutive election.
The caucus’s unified reaffirmation of Pelosi as Speaker solidified her power not only within the chamber but also within the party, even alongside an expanded House majority with more conservative members and a popular president-elect.
Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) - President-elect Barack Obama says he will bar pork-barrel projects from the massive economic stimulus bill he wants Congress to pass.
Obama said Tuesday that his plan, expected to cost about $775 billion, will not allow lawmakers to insert pet projects, as they sometimes do on spending bills.
He told reporters at his transition office in Washington that his package will set a "new higher standard of accountability, transparency and oversight. We are going to ban all earmarks, the process by which individual members insert projects without review."
Look at the media circus that has been created by on senate appointment. The media and the public thought that Rod Blagojevich at least had the decency to not appoint someone to Barack Obama's former senate seat because he was under investigation for trying to sell it.
But lo and behold he defied everyone by appointing Roland Burris. No one outside of Illinois has even heard of him before. I voted for him when he ran for office when I became of age because he seemed like an honest guy.
One thing I and other Illinois voters never knew about him was the size of his ego. Obviously Blagojevich knew he had one. He knew this was the one guy who would accept this appointment, the one guy who would talk to each and every media outlet that put a mic in front of him. By picking a squeaky clean ego maniac he got just what he wanted, a media circus and attention.
It sad that a actual honest politician is so consumed by his own accomplishments that he allows himself to become a spectacle to the American people. But after having a monument built to himself and naming your son and your daughter after yourself what can you expect.
Brad Kiley has been named as the director of the Office of Management and Administration by President-elect Barack Obama. Kiley, who is openly gay, is currently the director of operations for the Obama-Biden Transition Project and was a former vice president at the Center for American Progress.
By MAAMOUN YOUSSEF | Associated Press Writer
CAIRO, Egypt (AP) — Islamic militants posted sarcastic comments on an extremist Web site Tuesday ridiculing a recent announcement by First Lady Laura Bush that the family's cat had died.
The online comments were unusual on the site that usually focuses on official statements by al-Qaida and other militants. Commentators, who must be registered members of the site, frequently post their opinions, but normally the topics are humorless.
But on Tuesday, one commentator, called Dark-Side, sarcastically urged followers to offer condolences for the cat.
"For God's sake, could someone tell us where the wake is to be held?" the online commentator wrote.
A few also poked fun at Arab leaders allied with the United States.
"This is not the right time to die. It is a dilemma for the Arab leaders at this time because they are busy and have to leave the region to offer condolences" in Washington, wrote another commentator.
But others objected to discussing such lighthearted topics because of the Israeli offensive in Gaza.
"We are sad at this time and publishing this only increases our sorrow," wrote a commentator.
The first lady's office said Monday that the family's 18-year-old cat, named India, died Sunday at the White House.
January 5, 2009
January 4, 2009
Warning the following video is very graphic:
A Mat-Su drug investigator and the union representing Alaska State Troopers are alleging political meddling in the Sherry Johnston drug case, including a delay in serving the search warrant because of the November election.Read Full Article......
Johnston is the mother of Levi Johnston, who became nationally known in September when Gov. Sarah Palin and her husband, Todd, announced their daughter, Bristol, was pregnant and he was the father. Palin was running for vice president while Sherry Johnston was under investigation.
By NEDRA PICKLER
Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) - New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson has withdrawn his nomination to be President-elect Barack Obama's commerce secretary amid a grand jury investigation.
Obama's transition office said Sunday that Obama has accepted Richardson's withdrawal.
A federal grand jury is investigating how a California company that contributed to Richardson's political activities won a lucrative New Mexico state contract.
A person familiar with the proceedings has told The Associated Press that the grand jury is looking into possible "pay-to-play" dealings between CDR Financial Products and someone in a position to push the contract through with the state of New Mexico.
STATEMENT OF PRESIDENT ELECT BARACK OBAMA
It is with deep regret that I accept Governor Bill Richardson's decision to withdraw his name for nomination as the next Secretary of Commerce.Governor Richardson is an outstanding public servant and would have brought to the job of Commerce Secretary and our economic team great insights accumulated through an extraordinary career in federal and state office. It is a measure of his willingness to put the nation first that he has removed himself as a candidate for the Cabinet in order to avoid any delay in filling this important economic post at this critical time. Although we must move quickly to fill the void left by Governor Richardson's decision, I look forward to his future service to our country and in my administration.
STATEMENT OF GOVERNOR BILL RICHARDSON
For nearly three decades, I have been honored to serve my state and our nation in Congress, at the U.N., as Secretary of Energy and as governor. So when the President-elect asked me to serve as Secretary of Commerce, I felt a duty to answer the call.I felt that duty particularly because America is facing such extraordinary economic challenges. The Department of Commerce must play an important role in solving them by helping to grow the new jobs and businesses America so badly needs.
It is also because of that sense of urgency about the work of the Commerce Department that I have asked the President-elect not to move forward with my nomination at this time.I do so with great sorrow. But a pending investigation of a company that has done business with New Mexico state government promises to extend for several weeks or, perhaps, even months.
Let me say unequivocally that I and my Administration have acted properly in all matters and that this investigation will bear out that fact. But I have concluded that the ongoing investigation also would have forced an untenable delay in the confirmation process.Given the gravity of the economic situation the nation is facing, I could not in good conscience ask the President-elect and his Administration to delay for one day the important work that needs to be done.
So, for now, I will remain in the job I love, Governor of New Mexico, and will continue to work every day, with Lieutenant Governor Diane Denish, to make a positive difference in the lives of New Mexicans. I believe she will be a terrific governor in the future.I appreciate the confidence President-elect Obama has shown in me, and value our friendship and working partnership. I told him that I am eager to serve in the future in any way he deems useful. And like all Americans, I pray for his success and the success of our beloved country.
PHILIP ELLIOTT and DINA CAPPIELLO | Associated Press
WASHINGTON — Michelle Obama and her two daughters arrived Saturday in Washington, ahead of President-elect Barack Obama who was expected to make the trip the next day.
The Obamas arrived at their temporary home at the Hay-Adams Hotel, near the White House, on Saturday evening. Aides confirmed their arrival only after the Obamas checked into the hotel and declined to release any details. They had no public schedule.
The Obamas moved early so their daughters _ 7-year-old Sasha and 10-year-old Malia _ could start classes on Monday at the private Sidwell Friends School, an aide said. Other children of well-known politicians to attend the school include Al Gore III and Chelsea Clinton.
The Obamas are staying at the storied Hay-Adams because Blair House, the government's official guest residence, was booked solidly through Jan. 15, the Bush administration said. Blair House is located across Pennsylvania Avenue from the White House and has previously housed presidents-elect before taking the oath of office. The Obamas will relocate there on Jan. 15 and stay until the inauguration on Jan. 20.
The Obamas returned to Chicago early Friday morning after a 12-day family vacation at a $9 million rental home in his native Hawaii. A day later, Michelle Obama and her daughters flew into the Washington area to take over their suite at the historic Hay-Adams.
The scene outside the hotel was quiet Saturday night, except for two news vans with accompanying crews hoping to get a shot of Michelle Obama and her daughters going in and out.
Security will intensify for Barack Obama's arrival on Sunday. The district's government is shutting down several streets near the hotel to traffic and there will be no street parking nearby from 1 a.m. Sunday morning until midnight on Jan. 15, according to its Web site.
Opened in 1928, the hotel sits across Lafayette Square from the White House, Obama's eventual work place and home. Its name comes from two historical figures who lived on the site: John Hay, the private assistant to President Abraham Lincoln and later secretary of state, and Henry Adams, an author and descendant of Presidents John Adams and John Quincy Adams.
The Hay-Adams has 145 rooms and suites, featuring marble bathrooms, intricately carved plaster ceilings and ornamental fireplaces and balconies _ with views of the White House, Lafayette Square and St. John's Church _ in certain rooms.
Room amenities include custom Italian bed linens and towels, goose down duvets and pillows (hypoallergenic pillows are available; Malia has allergies), plush microfiber bathrobes and slippers for adults and kids, Bose CD music systems with assorted CDs, exclusive Etro toiletries, complimentary Fiji bottled water and a nightly turndown service.
After throwing open its doors, the hotel quickly attracted prominent Washingtonians and other elites, including aviators Charles Lindbergh and Amelia Earhart, author Sinclair Lewis and actress Ethel Barrymore. Its restaurant is a top destination for "power dining" and is a regular meeting place for White House officials.
Arrangements are under way for a Wednesday meeting between Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Roland Burris, the Democrat tapped by Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich to succeed President-elect Barack Obama in the U.S. Senate, ABC News has learned.
Burris confidant and business partner Fred Lebed of Chicago tells ABC News that, despite the opposition of Senate leaders, Burris is on track to arrive in Washington Monday, and on Capitol Hill, Tuesday.
"He intends to be....
BAGHDAD — A woman wearing an explosive belt blew herself up near the entrance of a revered Shiite shrine Sunday morning in Baghdad, killing at least 37 people, many of them Shiite pilgrims, according to the Ministry of the Interior. As many as 53 others were wounded in the attack, which occurred during a Shiite holy month.
The suicide bombing outside the Imam Moussa Al-kadhim shrine in the Kadhimiyah neighborhood came nine days after a Dec. 26 car bomb killed 24 people and wounded 46 others after it had exploded on a busy road near the same shrine.
The timing and location of each bombing appeared to be intended to reignite sectarian violence, from which Iraq had shown signs of emerging in recent months.
Sunday’s attack, which occurred at about 11:30 a.m., came during Muharram, among the holiest months for all Muslims but particularly for Shiites, who prepare to commemorate the martyrdom of Imam Hussein, grandson of the Prophet Muhammad. Imam Hussein was killed during a battle against the forces of a Sunni caliph in 680.The suicide bomber may have been targeting Shiite pilgrims from Iran, who were at the mosque in large numbers at the time, said a Ministry of Interior official who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media. Of the dead, 24 were Iraqi and 16 Iranian, while 32 of the wounded are Iranian, with 14 from Iraq.
We have become a culture who claims to stand for one thing, but in reality we support and grow in a culture totally opposite.
2008 was the year I saw this country divided as if it were Civil War, conservatives against liberals. War was waged upon the land in the form of insults, and rumors spread like the plague. The candidates wives were talked about as if they were two dollar hookers.
Everyone became the judge of another without looking at what they themselves had on their plate. Normally one group would criticize the other for having a child out of wedlock, but when it was one of their own, they called it standing up and handling their responsibilities. Meanwhile Black leaders who claimed to stand up for minorities, questioned whether their candidate were 'Black' enough to represent them.
I read the blogs who spread some of the most spiteful and hateful rumors about Mccain and Obama both, but at the same time claim to be christian. Drug addict, old, terrorist, socialist, liar, traitor, ugly, hillbilly, diva, white trash and racist were just some of the words used to describe the candidates or their spouses.
We called one candidate a socialist, when the accusing party's own leader instituted the biggest socialist move in United States history in the form of a bailout. Meanwhile the other tears down a woman and insults her intelligence because it benefits their cause even though they claim to be a defender of women's rights.
We have become a society were using a double standard has become like breathing. When it is in our best interest we cling to it, just like guns and religion.
We are quick to attack just as fast as we defend. We judge and form opinions based of words of those who have one goal and could care less about what the truth is.
Racism has become a weapon for the majority and a shield for minorities. A sexist is what you are if you question a woman credentials even after your opponent already called your resume a joke.
We pardon known and convicted felons, yet keep imprisoned, men on foreign soil who have not been charged or accused of anything.
Gay is the new Black, Muslim is the new Gay.
White is the new minority, while fear of Black culture is the majority.
Rumors have become truth because they were printed or posted online. We no longer look for reality but became satisfied with what the author tells us is reality. We have become mindless drones who seek knowledge from those who now are aware we will consume what is presented before us.
We agree on very little, yet argue on what we do agree upon.
The word truth no longer exists, it has been replaced by ideology and opinion. Don't believe anything I told you.............or should you?