Harriet Miers: The SCOTUS Anti-Nominee?

Harriet MiersWe haven’t done a whole lot of coverage of the Harriet Miers nomination for Supreme Court justice, mostly because she seems like such a long-shot, but some recent news has made us wonder just what the Bush administration was smoking when they nominated her.

Half of Senate Republicans are shying away from this blatant display of cronyism (defined here by heading the candidate committee and then getting selected herself), as reported in a poll by the conservative Washington Times newspaper:

What’s troubling for President Bush, however, is that 27 Republican senators — almost half of his party’s members in the chamber — have publicly expressed specific doubts about Miss Miers or said they must withhold any support whatsoever for her nomination until after the hearings.

Things are so bad, it appears the Bush administration has blundered their way into selecting a losing nominee with a majority of the conservative crowd. Glenn Reynolds weighed in with this poignant remark:

More and more, I have to wonder what the White House was thinking with this. First of all, when you’re already under fire for cronyism, and you nominate someone who’s, well, a crony, you ought to be locked-and-loaded in terms of response. They weren’t.

Second of all, they seem to have managed to convince a lot of people on the social right that she’s too liberal, while people on the libertarian-right worry that she’s too much a fan of government power. Third, their response to critics and complaints has been slow and weak.

Our international associate over at Finland for Thought thinks that perhaps Miers is an anti-nominee, and that this is a Machiavellian plan where she was never intended to win and will only soften the blow for a later, more qualified candidate:

Stop taking Bush’s latest supreme court nominee, Harriet Miers, so seriously. Bush knows she won’t get the seat, the Republicans know she won’t get the seat, and even she knows she won’t get the seat. She’s just a decoy.

[…] The plan is the toss a few decoys like this into the mix. The Republicans will make the Democrats look like a gang of partisan assholes. Then after a few decoys, Bush will throw in his real contender who will take the seat.

Whatever the deal is, all bets are off on Miers, even if she were the perfect libertarian wet-dream nominee (she’s not), the administration has completely FUBARed this beyond hope at this point.

Update: Speaking of cronyism, don’t miss CronyJobs.com, whose slogan reads: “The hottest government careers — for entitled plutocrats like you!” Good satire of the whole Bush administration cronyism scandal.


“Papa Smurf must leave within 48 hours…”

“…his refusal to do so will result in military conflict, commenced at a time of our choosing.”

UNICEF bombs the Smurfs

UNICEF has unveiled a wicked insane commercial showcasing the ravages of war against children, featuring the Smurfs getting aerially bombed (via jwz):

It opens with the Smurfs dancing, hand-in-hand, around a campfire and singing the Smurf song. Bluebirds flutter past and rabbits gambol around their familiar village of mushroom- shaped houses until, without warning, bombs begin to rain from the sky.

Tiny Smurfs scatter and run in vain from the whistling bombs, before being felled by blast waves and fiery explosions. The final scene shows a scorched and tattered Baby Smurf sobbing inconsolably, surrounded by prone Smurfs.

The Snorks — who led the coalition invasion against the Smurfs Village — were quick to point out that they were liberating the Smurfs from their tyrannical leader and from the terrorist network in the northern Smurf forest, led by Al Garmagel and Al Azrael:

“Our goal instead is to help others find their own voice, attain their own freedom and make their own way.”

“Snorks will not pretend that jailed dissidents prefer their chains, or that smurfettes welcome humiliation and servitude, or that any smurf aspires to live at the mercy of bullies.

“… In the long run, there is no justice without freedom, and there can be no smurf rights without smurf liberty.”


Libertarian Girl Hoaxer Fesses Up

Fake Libertarian GirlEnding the long saga of who’s behind the Libertarian Girl Hoax, it turns out a blogger by the name of Michael over at Half Sigma confesses to that hoax and a slew of others (via Catallarchy).

Why did I do it and why reveal the hoaxes now? My reasons for doing these hoaxes are two-fold: (1) I really wanted a blog that people would actually read; and (2) it’s kind of fun tricking people.

Interestingly, he also ran the popular blog Calico Cat (now defunct), which was linked on occasion from Wonkette. Michael sure knows how to self-promote. I have to give him props for realizing boobs equals traffic, but it’s a shame he’s not spending his time more constructively.


Bush To Veto Spending Bill

But it is not because of the massive national debt it is because of the governments right to torture prisoners. And I was beginning to think he had became a conservative.

The man behind the legislation, Republican Senator John McCain, who was tortured as a prisoner in Vietnam, said the move was backed by American soldiers. His amendment would prohibit the “cruel, inhumane or degrading” treatment of prisoners in the custody of America’s defence department.

The vote was one of the largest and best supported congressional revolts during President George W Bush’s five years in office and shocked the White House.

“We have put out a Statement of Administration Policy saying that his advisers would recommend that he vetoes it if it contains such language,” White House spokesman Scott McClellan warned yesterday.

The administration said Congress was attempting to tie its hands in the war against terrorism.

Read more.

I would like to hear from those that were or are currently in the military to know if they support this anti-torture legislation and why or why not that way I can make a more informed opinion on the subject but currently I am saying that when a few torture and go unpunished they make the whole military look bad. I also acknowledge the military is punishing the criminals but I think this legislation is needed.

Update by Stephen VanDyke: Another hollow veto threat? Bush makes history – a five-year streak without saying ‘no’:

“For fiscal conservatives, it’s frustrating to watch,” says David Keating, executive director at the Club for Growth, a Washington group that advocates fiscal responsibility and lower taxes. “He’s beginning to lose all credibility with these veto threats.”


Libertarian Students for Saving Social Security?

Unfortunately, I do not have a link to this, as it was sent via e-mail. Basically, it was a plea to support the Bush plan for Social Security Reform. From the e-mail:

I am the president of the Columbia College Libertarians, and I am working on national outreach for Students for Saving Social Security, the leading non-partisan, nationwide student organization advocating for personal accounts…

As a libertarian, I understand that perhaps you do not appreciate many of the policies of the Bush Administration, neither do I. However, we can agree with President Bush that Social Security needs reform. SSSS is working to give our generation a voice in the campaign for lasting Social Security reform.

Ahhh, the poor fools. Their hearts are in the right place, but they’re delusional if they truly think the plan calls for any “privatization” or freedom on the part of the workers in this country.

Let’s see. Is Social Security a binding contract? Nope. Benefits can be diminished/terminated at any time.

Would you have access to that money prior to retiring? Nope.

Can you invest that money anywhere? Nope.

Can you opt out? Apparently not.

But hey! You get to pick from a predetermined set of stocks for the government to invest your money in… and regardless of how well your picks do, you’ll pretty much get the same (small) monthly paycheck when you’re 65.


250,000 Bullets Per Insurgent

This story has been around for a couple weeks, but it keeps getting picked up… this time, by Free Market News Network:

Annual ammunition usage has more than doubled over the last five years and the government estimates that American forces use 1.8 billion bullets annually. Experts point out that since bombs and artillery have killed a number of insurgents, the 250,000 is actually a low estimate.

Perhaps our soldiers should spend some time in the off season at a paintball range to boast their percentages. Though to be fair, some ammunition is used for target practice. So in combat, it’s likely to be only 150,000 per kill.

But have no fear, our “good friend” Israel is more than happy to sell us the ammunition and make some money off us on the side.

How’s that quote from George Washington go? Something something… “entangling alliances”, etc etc. Baahhh, who cares.


Perfect for that Wintry Rally at the 50 Cent Concert

Anticon hoodie for Hip Hop gangsta 13yo KlankidsThese hoodies being pitched at the new French clothing site Anticon are pretty clever, you can zip them all the way up and there’s little eyeholes pre-cut. From the BoingBoing writeup on what this means for the UK surveillance society (and eventually the US):

Here in Britain, closed-circuit cameras are everywhere: the average Londoner is said to be photographed some 300 times a day. Equally ubiquitous are the signs that demand that you take off your hoodie’s hood or your motorcycle crash-helmet so that it won’t interfere with the universal surveillance.

So imagine the reaction that these awesome, masked French hoodies will evince when they land on Britain’s shore. All they lack is a cluster of hidden, high-intensity infra-red LEDs that can overwhelm the charge-coupled device arrays in some digital cameras.

Surveillance, Smurveillance… Let us be the first to call this thing what it looks like: clothing for 13-year-old Hip-Hop Klan gangstas.

Word life!


Has Blogging Jumped the Shark?

blogging jumps the sharkYou know when blogs are valued at $564.64 per inlink (which makes Hammer of Truth worth roughly less than $70K), there’s a little bit of a bubble:

AOL bought Weblogs inc., the two year old weblog network founded by Jason Calacanis and Brian Alvey, for a number that is rumored to be anywhere between $25 million and $40 million. In this process, Time Warner may be providing some ideas as to the valuation of blogs by traditional media.

[…]Should we now assume that traditional media companies are willing to pay between $500 and $1000 per site that links into a blog?

Not quite. The incremental value is in the size of the network and the underlying tools. Jason and Brian have been working on developing a blog authoring technology, called BlogSmith, that sits at the core of their network and one has to believe that AOL saw some value in the software too. However, one can easily say that blog valuations are going to be easier to make after this deal since it provides the first yardstick in that space.

In which case, the yardstick says AOL got fleeced. Welcome to Intarweb 2.0, milk it while you can mofo.

But in case you thought the blog hype only pervaded the boardroom, you need to take a look at the classroom where one enterprising English teacher instructs his students to create a blog, and one student applies the old and worn essay format to dissecting others’ blog posts:

In English 11, we have been given the assignment of creating a blog. I’m still a bit uncertain as to what a blog is; however, I feel that with all of the technology incorporated into the curriculum I will learn more about the options available. This blog will allow me to publish some of my work and will enhance my learning skills!

Thanks to Joe Stump for pointing out one of her blog entries, a long rambling analysis of his post about Jared the Subway guy:

The Joe Smug blog includes the author’s point of view on weightloss and the success of Jared by incorporating certain facts from a CNN article link. The author gives a personal testimony of his recent battle with weightloss, showing how he is personally affected by the issue. He then discusses two examples of those who lost weight, his college freshman roomate’s success with weightloss, losing 80 pounds in one summer, and Jared Fogle.

The author then writes for another 400 words in order to meet the teacher’s requirement for essay length. Seriously, rambling… AT IT’S BEST! YAY INTARWEB!

If this is how Internet 2.0 is shaping up, I’m more than a little disappointed.

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Ohio Bloggers (Political or Otherwise)

I’m doing some digging for Ohio Bloggers, preferably political and leaning libertarian. For what I’m doing I’ll take what I can get (you know, because when you put a blog on a campaign website, you have to link to other people and stuff).

If you know any blogs or lists, add them to the comments. If you are a Ohio blogger, feel free to add your blog here. I’m pretty sure Hammer of Truth has big ups on the pagerank enough to get this to be a nice list in the coming weeks.


Howard Dean: Hide the What?

My roommate Ken was watching Hardball yesterday and he runs in to tell me that Howard Dean was talking about hiding the salami on TV. You know, because Dean is so hip, he knows what that means and all:

MATTHEWS: Do you believe that the president can claim executive privilege?

DEAN: Well, certainly the president can claim executive privilege. But in the this case, I think with a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court, you can’t play, you know, hide the salami, or whatever it’s called. He’s got to go out there and say something about this woman who’s going to a 20 or 30-year appointment, a 20 or 30-year appointment to influence America. We deserve to know something about her.

I thought we covered that game last decade with Clarence Thomas’s thing for Coke cans?

Then again, Dean could be hinting that Harriet Miers is a tranny. Who knew?

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Libertarian Rally Hits FrontPage Magazine

While co-blogger (and friend) Stephen VanDyke is posting entries with titles like “The Anti-War Movement is a Joke”, I’ve been busy promoting certain anti-war ralliesa recent rally in Alabama where Lew Rockwell spoke, in particular.

FrontPage Magazine is rendering an opinion on the topic, as well.

In late September, as throngs of placard-wielding protestors were descending on the nation’s capital, Lew Rockwell, the nominally libertarian proprietor of the website LewRockwell.com, was holding forth at an anti-war rally convened by the far-left Alabama Peace and Justice Coalition (APJC).

That the APJC’s rallying cry — “Spend money for human needs, not war!” — was of questionable accordance with principled libertarianism’s aversion to government largesse, didn’t seem to phase Rockwell, who joined a roster of speakers with an altogether different view about the proper role of the federal government. “I was aware that I was a token non-leftist speaking to a largely leftist audience,” Rockwell later explained on his website. Nonetheless, he noted that, despite some political differences with the gathered crowd, his “speech seemed well received.”

Jacob Laskin, who wrote the article, went on to froth at the mouth about Rockwell selling out to the liberal left.

With its foam-flecked denunciations of the United States for “the evil of imperialism, the immorality of enslaving a foreign people, the malice of colonialism, and the intolerable brutality of authoritarianism,” its paranoiac allusions to a dissent-crushing “state,” and its unelaborated call for “resistance,” Rockwell’s speech could have been given by any of the more literate ringleaders of the anti-war left.

Laskin must not have been at the event. If he was, he would have noted some clear distinctions between the libertarians and the leftists attending the rally. The top rally poster in the photograph above should provide a case-in-point. Our profile on the issue was not low key, as the media covered on our position even before the rally.

The point of greatest applause may have been when one of the speakers (not Rockwell) spoke about tax resistance. Thoreau was the obvious topic of conversation I had with many leftists attending the rally following this comment. The ensuing conversations certainly opened the door to at least some liberals and progressives reconsidering their devotion to big government.

While Rockwell did have to keep his intended audience in mind (one will not gain much by attempting to sell ice cubes to Eskimos), he did not sell out libertarian positions. In fact, his speech was well-received, despite the inclusion of lines like this:

Of all forms of collectivist central planning, war is the most egregious. It is generated by the coercive force of taxation and monetary depreciation. Its means are economic regimentation and the violation of the freedom to associate and trade. Its ends are destruction and killing — crime on a mass scale.

While a majority of Americans currently believe that we should withdraw from Iraq, many libertarians are more concerned about the reactions of publications which list names like David Horowitz and Ann Coulter as contributors. I tend to favor the approach suggested in Rockwell’s closing paragraph:

Stand up to the state. Be a dissident. Tell what is true. And do not fear the emperor-pirates. They, after all, fear you. For you help tilt the balance of history against their barbarism, and in favor of peace and freedom


The Washington Nationals May Suck at Baseball, But They Excel at Stealing Home(s)

Washington Nationals plansThe Washington Nationals are strong-arming residents in DC to sell their land to them, whether they want to or not:

The city made offers to all 23 landowners on the site last month but received no response from 10.

“We think there are some that we’ll have good-faith negotiations with,” said Steve Green, director of development in the office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development. “There are some we haven’t heard from at all.”

Many property owners on the site said the city’s offers are inadequate. Others are suing the city on the grounds that it has no right to use eminent domain to acquire land at the site, despite a Supreme Court ruling affirming the right of municipal governments to take private property for the purpose of economic development.

In April, the city notified property owners on the site that they would be required to move out by Dec. 31.

I would be camping in a tent in Steve Green’s yard on January 1st if this happened to me. I hope the residents band together and make a big public stink about this in coming months.

You can also see more info about the overblown expansion plans (where I found that graphic). Note that the financing all comes from city bonds, so this isn’t simply a private use issue where Kelo applies easily.

Here’s a Google Maps link that you can use to compare to the proposed construction and get an idea of how large a swath they are hoping to steal.


Bill Clinton Condoms

Word comes from The Changing Face of America that a Chinese company is honoring former President Clinton by naming a new line of condoms after him.

A Chinese company is honoring ex-president Bill Clinton by naming a new line of condoms after him – along with a companion line of condoms that will be named after his ex-girlfriend, Monica Lewinsky.

Reports Britain’s Sky News: The Guangzhou Haokian Bio-science company has registered their names as trademarks for the contraceptives.

The condoms will display Chinese spellings: Kelitun and Laiwensiji.

Read full story.

I can think of a long list of sex toys that may be named in the future for our elected leaders. Once again this just goes to prove the government will screw you one way or another.


WTF, Over! – Vic Blazier

This OIF (Operation Iraqi Freedom) Veteran, Vic Blazier, echoes sentiments on the Iraq war perfectly.

From his blog article “Wet Tea Used To Be Patrtiotic”:

Suppose the Peoples Pinko Republic of China preemptively invaded the United States of America, with or without UN approval, under the auspices that we Americans possessed Weapons of Mass Destruction (we do) which we refused to yield (we don’t), and that our head evildoer (he is in my opinion) presided atop a corrupt, torturous, human-rights violating regime (he does -my opinion again)…

… I’m convinced that after about two years of purple finger tips, midnight home invasions, obtrusive cordon searches, ugly Bremer Barriers, persistent utility failures, inhumane raising of cities, and of having communism and all the good that it brings to China forced on me at gunpoint, I’d start getting a little pissed off. Bring it on! This is MY country. You want it, you’re going to have to fight me and my indigenous buddies for it. As a patriotic American I’d do whatever I had to in order to protect my family, my neighbors, my town, and my people. I’d organize with others who share my nonconformity in an effort to uproot the occupying forces. In short, I’d get medieval on em’. Wouldn’t you do the same? In this scenario, God forbid, wouldn’t it be time again for all good men to come to the aid of their country? Shouldn’t the people in this occupied America start tossing barrels of tea into the water?

FUCK YEAH! If China or any foreign power was occupying us, you can be damn sure that ordinarily non-violent Citizens like myself would go apeshit and try to off as many of them as possible, in any way shape or form. So why are we so amazed that this is exactly what is happening in Iraq? It’s amazing how the word “insurgent” seems to be synonymous with “Iraqi Citizen who fights back” isn’t it?

His closing signature tag explains clearly that the “if you don’t support the war, you hate our troops” argument is complete bullshit.

Anyone reading this blog entry and thinking I’m applauding or encouraging the death of American service members, or anyone else for that matter, is WRONG. I detest any and all loss of life due to this war in Iraq and I blame Bush and his ilk for creating this situation with lies, ignoring his military advisors, antagonizing the enemy, not admitting to his many errors, and failing to adjust his faulty foreign policy in ways that would end the steady stream of lost lives. I support our troops by demanding their valuable lives not be wasted on this fruitless war. After all, I was one of them, over there. -VB

Bookmark this puppy and send it around folks. It’s a perspective that is often not heard.

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Bush Aides Buy Propaganda

The Libertarian Party should look into doing this after all it has worked so well for the Republican and Democratic parties.

WASHINGTON, Sept. 30 – Federal auditors said on Friday that the Bush administration violated the law by buying favorable news coverage of President Bush’s education policies, by making payments to the conservative commentator Armstrong Williams and by hiring a public relations company to analyze media perceptions of the Republican Party.

Read full story.

I had to take so many damn tests last year because of these so called educational policies that I will give you my opinion of them they are the biggest unconstitutional b.s. around. Schools prepare the children for the tests not for work. People work in America do not set around taking tests all their time they work.

Just one more piece of evidence against this administration.

Thanks to Rick Rajter for the link.


FEMA’s Odyssey of the $100mil Ice

melting iceIt’s really FEMA-tastic how the deer in the headlights, say-anything-to-placate-the-masses mentality of FEMA leads to the Keystone Kops arriving and running up a hefty tab of stupidity:

Finally, 10 days after he started, the driver was told to take the ice to storage in Bettendorf, Iowa, Mr. Hohnstein said. The truck had traveled 3,282 miles, but not a cube of ice had reached a hurricane victim.

“Well,” Mr. Hohnstein said, “the driver got to see the country.”

His company’s bill to the government will exceed $15,000, he said, but the ice was worth less than $5,000. “It seemed like an incredible waste of money,” he said.

Multiply that by about 4,000 drivers… a lot of whom unwittingly donated their own time, gas money and patience, and you have a trucking industry that suddenly isn’t a big fan of big government.

Ironically, even Micheal Brown isn’t a fan of his own incompetence:

“I feebly attempted to get FEMA out of the business of ice,” Mr. Brown told a House panel this week. “I don’t think that’s a federal government responsibility to provide ice to keep my hamburger meat in my freezer or refrigerator fresh.”

Uh, yeah except it’s not used to chill your daiquiri, schmuck. It’s for hospitals to keep patients from dying of heat stroke in baking hospitals.

But let’s focus here on the truckers, and the political opportunity they represent (and the potential advertising on the backs of semi-trailers). Hell, a website calling itself The Trucker’s Report even has a manifesto of sorts:

Our goal is to help provide a voice to all people involved in the trucking industry in one form or another and to the motoring public as well whose lives are in jeopardy daily. Many of us are in an utter state of consternation as to why nothing is ever done or ever changes.

The only way things are to change is if we actually do something instead of just talking. We absolutely must have the motoring public’s support in achieving these goals. […]

[…] Yet the Democrats and others, who say they are for the working man, turn a blind eye to this because there is a lot of money involved and a lot of it shows up in their coffers at election time !

Seriously, any organization who’s motto is Hammer Down gets a thumbs up from us.


Join The Military For Free Music

They must really need some help so I encourage everyone to take advantage of this offer. If you are a supporter of President Bush, and the War in Iraq please sign up today so people like myself are never drafted. So hurry up download some free Green Day anti-war songs and then sign up for the military. Click here to sign up for this offer. Or you can click here to join the Libertarian Party but sorry no free downloads.

Receive 3 FREE iTunes music downloads when you sign up to be contacted by the Army National Guard!

Read more about this exciting offer.

Thanks to Crooks and Liars for the link.


Tom Delay Is The Federal Government

And that is what scares me. I have decided with all this talk about Tom Delay the Hammer of Truth should provide some quotes by our friend and political hero, God bless him.

“I AM the federal government.” — Tom DeLay, to the owner of Ruth’s Chris Steak House, after being told to put out his cigar because of federal government regulations banning smoking in the building, May 14, 2003

“So many minority youths had volunteered… that there was literally no room for patriotic folks like myself.” –Tom DeLay, explaining at the 1988 GOP convention why he and vice presidential nominee Dan Quayle did not fight in the Vietnam War.

“Now tell me the truth boys, is this kind of fun?” — Tom Delay, to three young hurricane evacuees from New Orleans at the Astrodome in Houston, Sept. 9, 2005.

Click here for more quotes.


Katrina Reconstruction Contracts – $2480 for 2 Hours of Roofing

Certainly, if there was competition for these contracts, the home repairs in New Orleans could be done MUCH cheaper than these inflated prices. I’m sure some of new 200,000 unemployed members of this community have the skills required to do this, and at a fraction of the cost.

No wonder government cost estimates are 200 billion. It’s so easy to be generous with the taxpayer’s money.

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Plamegate: Judy Miller Released

Karl Rove thumbing noseHot on the heels of the Tom DeLay indictment, it appears progress may be happening with the Valerie Plame CIA outing by Karl Rove.

It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out. Another indictment by an upper level member in Bush’s camp would be another nail in coffin for the 2006 elections. Face it, the GOP is definitely hitting rock bottom. Approval ratings are down, the war in Iraq has lost support, the economy is tanking, the Katrina response was abysmal… the LP has been handed a golden opportunity to make some headway. Instead, we hear very little.

I have this fear of Hillary in 2008. This after 4 years of GHW Bush, 8 years of Bill, and 8 years of GW Bush… shoot me now.

Update: Sweet, she is going to testify. Let’s see if she really brings the hammer down on the people responsible, and not just a lowly intern.


Judge Orders Release of Abu Ghraib Photos

No no, this is not Playboy Shoot ( “The Women of Abu Ghraib – Ready to Whip You Into Action”). A District Judge has ordered the next round of Abu Ghraib photos to be released to the public. I’m sure this year’s calendar of photos will be just as exciting as last years edition.

The army didn’t want these photos released for fear of the safety of the troops. And I personally don’t blame them for trying. I imagine the public outcry will be fierce and violence in Iraq will stir up considerably.

So do I support the release of the photos? Absolutely.

This is not a case of accidents or mistake. This was just torture. This was just boredom. As one soldier put it, it ‘was sport’. Though, I imagine we won that game, despite being the visiting team. The ACLU fought for their release, and it looks promising that they’ll get their way.

Look, war is hell, that’s for sure. But our soldiers shouldn’t be involved or condone the raping of little boys. I know I’m old fashion, but these types of torture chambers are so middle ages.

But we’ve learned a lot of good intelligence on where Osama is… we’ll find him any day now.

Update: This article helps shed light on one soldier’s attempts at going through the standard chain of command to end the abuse. He described the mentality of the abuse as the following:

“They wanted intel,” said a sergeant, one of the ordinary, untrained grunts pressed into duty as interrogation muscle. “As long as no [captives] came up dead, it happened. We kept it to broken arms and legs” — sometimes with baseball bats, and occasionally augmented by scalding naked prisoners with burning chemicals. The soldiers learned their “stress techniques” from CIA interrogators, dropping into Iraq from their “unleashed” torture centers in Afghanistan, Diego Garcia and points unknown.

But of course they didn’t always “keep it” to broken arms and legs. Fishback, who had been trying desperately to get his superiors to act on the atrocities he’d witnessed himself, discovered that a captive had been “interrogated” to death.

So apparently the detainees have important information, but not so important that killing them and losing this intel forever is a big deal.


DeLay Indicted; Successor just as Corrupt

DeLay indictedRep. Tom DeLay is no longer the House majority speaker, due to a pesky fundraising fuckup that might land his ass in jail:

The grand jury accused the men of conspiring to route corporate donations from DeLay’s Texas committee to the Republican Party in Washington, then returning the money back to Texas legislative candidates. It was a scheme intended to evade a state law outlawing corporate donations going to candidates, the indictment said.

Criminal conspiracy is a Texas felony punishable by six months to two years in a state jail and a fine of up to $10,000. The potential two-year sentence forced DeLay to step down under House Republican rules.

Of course, his replacement as speaker — Rep. Roy Blunt — might as well toss the gavel in the air and hope a decent Republican catches it (*cough* Ron Paul *cough*), because he’s just as mired in the corruption:

A consultant under indictment with Rep. Tom DeLay has been paid roughly $88,000 in fees by the political committee of Rep. Roy Blunt, who is temporarily replacing DeLay as House majority leader, according to federal records.

Records on file with the Federal Election Commission show the fund linked to Blunt retains Ellis’ firm, J.W. Ellis Co., and has made periodic payments for services. Political Money Line, a nonpartisan Internet tracking service, places the total at about $88,000.

Ellis is one of three political associates of DeLay, R-Texas, who have been indicted in an alleged scheme to use corporate political donations illegally to support candidates in state elections. Ellis also runs DeLay’s national political action committee, Americans for a Republican Majority.

Face it, Democrats and Republicans are both corrupt, the Libertarian Party can’t stop acting like a debate club, and we’re stuck in the middle, fucked.

Update: Bill Frist is also under investigation for insider trading. From IO Error:

Meanwhile, Sen. Bill Frist is being accused of insider trading for divesting himself of Hospital Corporation of America stock just before the company announced its second quarter earnings were less than expected, resulting in a drop in the stock price. Frist claims he sold the stock to eliminate a potential conflict of interest, as his father is one of the company’s founders and his brother one of the company’s board of directors.


Update on Operation Clean Sweep

clean sweep pigAs previously covered here at the Hammer of Truth, Pennsylvania residents are pissed off with their state legislators… and they are not going to just sit back and take it this time.

They recently organized a ‘Rock the Capital’ rally to protest the exorbitant pay raise that the officials gave themselves at 2 a.m. on the last day they were in session, right before they left on vacation. Well do you like that? It’s funny how tax cuts can take years of debate before implementing, but a pay raise can be done in a single day!

Anyway, the protest drew in approximately 1500 people and of course, a 25 foot tall pig. They served a 129,000 signature petition to repeal the pay raises, which ranged from 18 to 54 percent and made them the second highest paid state legislators in the country (behind California).

Kudos to all of those that made it happen. It looks like the campaign to vote out every incumbent has been started quite successfully… I wish them the best of luck and applaud their activism.

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