Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Real Prosecutors Don't Let War Criminals Walk For The Price Of A
One of the most sappy ideas we've heard in a long time was the
suggestion of a certain Democratic Senate leader last week that the
worst criminals at the top of the Bush administration should be
effectively granted blanket immunity in exchange for "fessing up". We
can only hope Leahy's actual strategic intent was to have the
proposal get shot down, as it quickly was by others, for being pretty
much totally toothless. We need to make sure that message was not
missed. Indeed, we need to put an exclamation point on it.
The fact is that without prosecution, the top war criminals in
American political office of the future will presume that they can
always get off the hook by the so-called "truth" commission route.
And yet the people who are in the media calling for non-enforcement
of the laws against torture and illegal wiretapping are the SAME ones
who are "zero tolerance" fanatics when little people get in trouble.
Prosecution Commission Action Page:
One of Leahy's non-arguments was that prosecuting all the criminals
in the Bush administration would take 10-15 years. Oh, really? Did
they commit THAT many hideous crimes? That's all the more reason to
get moving on it as soon as possible. As a former prosecutor himself
he should know that immunity is granted to GET testimony against the
criminal kingpins, not to let them skate themselves entirely.
Thankfully at least John Conyers on the House side, and other
senators like Whitehouse and Reed, have come forward to stand up for
the principle that ONLY prosecution is any deterrent in cases like
these. Did the pardon of Nixon send a message for the future? Of
course it did? It led Cheney and Rumsfeld, who were IN that
administration, to believe that they would have their own chance to
get away with mass murder.
Need YOUR Submission For New T-Shirt Design
To go along with "Convict Dick & W" caps we are already mass
shipping, we had the idea of doing a t-shirt as well. The idea would
be a graphic of the faces of Bush and Cheney wearing unhappy
expressions, either behind bars or perhaps in striped prison outfits,
as a way of visualizing that reality.
We want to throw this out to our most creative participants. In our
mind's eye we are looking for something with an imaginative design,
perhaps in the realm of caricature. If you would like to submit a
design, please email back a reply.
By the way, all the cap requests from the last week are being shipped
tomorrow, but if you have not requested your "Convict Dick & W" cap
yet, here is the page for that.
Convict Dick & W Caps: http://www.peaceteam.net/convict_cap.php
And of course on that same page you can also find the new local
county prosecutor lookup, which we are using to call, write and email
local district attorneys, asking them to bring murder charges against
George Bush and Dick Cheney as urged by Vince Bugliosi. At the top of
all these pages, there is a link to a terrific YouTube video you can
watch on this of Bugliosi's House testimony. After watching that
video, the words will come to you that you will need to say.
The local prosecutor initiative is an important long term back up
action, intended to keep the heat on at the same time for a special
prosecutor at the federal level.
IMPORTANT NOTE: We are not asking anyone to file a "formal" criminal
complaint yourself. Common sense tells us that a state prosecutor
will only act, in the exercise of their OWN discretion, if they
believe there is a non-frivolous case to bring. But by speaking out,
we can let them know there is community support for them to do so.
Please take action NOW, so we can win all victories that are supposed
to be ours, and forward this alert as widely as possible.
If you would like to get alerts like these, you can do so at
This is a presidency on steroids. Barack Obama's executive actions alone would be enough for any new administration's first month: decreeing an end to torture and the Guantanamo prison, extending health insurance to more children, reversing Bush-era policies on family planning. That the White House also managed to push through Congress a spending bill of unprecedented size and scope -- designed both to provide an economic stimulus and reorder the nation's priorities -- is little short of astonishing.
And yet I read liberal bloggers criticizing him for not doing it a certain way. His been mocked in the blogosphere here for making nice with the Republicans only to have them stab him in the back and vote unanimously against the Stimulus package.
I have mixed feelings about the American auto industry. Why have they been so slow to adjust to changes in the market for smaller, more efficient, better made cars and trucks? It is not the problem created by union workers making too much money for working on the assembly line. It's the fault of the executives who have been unwilling to lead the industry with hybrids and other alternatives to the big bloated gas guzzlers of the past. It's the salaries of the men at the top and the poor decisions they've made that have made the U.S. auto industry a failure. Off with their heads. Keep the workers, fire the CEO's and designers. Start over.
Thanks to an amendment that Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) inserted into the stimulus bill, Washington now has control over bonuses and severance packages at financial companies that have taken funds from the Bush administration's $700 billion Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP): No more eight-figure bonuses for Wall Street "geniuses" whose cleverness helped drive their companies, and a good deal of the economy, into the ground.
Dodd added a measure that makes it easier for firms that chafe at Washington-imposed restrictions -- on executive compensation, for example -- to pull out of TARP. The details are complicated, but what's important is that banks and other financial institutions that are relatively healthy may well begin to leave the program. The impression would be that the firms remaining in the program are relatively sick -- and people tend to be uncomfortable keeping their money in banks that can be described as relatively sick.I'm in favor of nationalizing failing banks. I want no more gobbling up of smaller banks by the likes of Citibank. The only healthy banks I know about are the small local banks. I've heard of no problems with the credit unions, like the one I am a member of. It's the big bloated financial institutions that are causing the problems. So nationalize them or let them fail.
Then there's the housing problem, which may be the most difficult of all. Foreclosures and plummeting home values are at the heart of the economic crisis. Either millions of Americans are going to lose their homes or millions of mortgage contracts are somehow going to be modified. That's not an attractive choice.
All Barack Obama wanted was to be president. He may have to become an auto executive, a banker, a mortgage broker and who knows what else before this crisis is done.So what do we expect of our new President who has yet to be in office one month? Miracles it seems to me. I'm happy with his work so far. My complaint is with the Congressional Leadership. I say if the Republicans do not want to be part of the solution, do not offer them plums to sweeten the deal for them. They will take credit for the weakening of your legislation and then stab you in the back. Let the bastards filibuster. I don't really believe that's a spectacle even their deep south and Utah constituents will find helpful in keeping a job or keeping a home or a car in a rapidly shrinking economy. The South is relatively poor compared to other parts of the country. I doubt the filibuster will play well no matter how conservative you think you are when faced with the possibility of moving your family into you mothers home or living in a shelter.
In Utah we have the second richest church in America to run our government. Too bad they won't pony up--they could bail us all out if they wanted to. $500 million to pour into passing Prop 8 in California was just one tiny drop in the bucket for them.