Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Iran Whines, Indians and Government Come To Terms

Sarah Palin
Kathleen Parker
Dana Milbank
Tarek Fatah

A short while ago I wrote about the Iraqi authorities using a bomb detection device, the ADE 651. It was a hand-held wand, with an antenna on a swivel, and its makers also made the outrageous claims that it: "... can find guns, ammunition, drugs, truffles, human bodies and even contraband ivory at distances up to a kilometer, underground, through walls, underwater or even from airplanes three miles high." This was deemed useful for finding truffles in the desert sand... Unfortunately, they still used these voodoo devices at their checkpoints, and boms have been getting through easily. There may not be any government buildings left after the recent spate of bombs that went off in Baghdad, killing over 127 people. Many pundits think the bombs were to intimidate having the next set of elections, but an interesting contrary theory I read has to do with perhaps convincing the American troops to stay. If Iraq is in the middle of a civil war, or looks too chaotic, how can the US still pull out their troops when they are needed to preserve order? In response, the top military command in Iraaq said that the recent bombings will have nothing to do with their decision, they are still leaving on schedule, bye bye, see ya, have a good time...

oh, the weather outside is frightful...

What a difference a day makes. I can't find any news on the developments regarding the protests in Iran, its like they dropped off the face of the earth. Or it illustrates what a short term memory the news cycle has. Iran is in the news for making accusations and being bellicose towards Israel.. First, comes Iran's top nuclear guy, saying that they are prepared to strike back at Israel, if they strike at their nuclear plants: "Iran's Defense Minister Brig. Gen. Ahmad Vahidi on Wednesday threatened Israel with military response in the event of an a "threat" against the country, the Islamic Republic News Agency reported. The report quoted Vahidi while on an official trip to Syria as saying, "Should the Zionist forces pose any threat against Iran, we will never hesitate to target their nuclear sites and centers for proliferation of chemical, biochemical, as well as dirty and prohibited weapons."

Israel neither confirms nor denies the existence of a nuclear arsenal." This is one of my favorite punchlines of the day...
"For those of us who are junkies for meaning, living here is pure heroin.”   - US Immigrant to Israel

Next, Iran is whining at a recent observation post set up by the US, err, UN in Turkmenistan: "The construction of the seismic monitoring station was completed last week in neighboring Turkmenistan, a few miles from the Iranian border. It's one of roughly 275 such stations that are operational worldwide and that can detect seismic activity set off by weak nuclear blasts and even shock waves from nuclear experiments.

Abolfazl Zohrehvand, an adviser to Iran's nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili, said the international treaty that allows for setting up such observatories is an "espionage treaty. With the disclosure of the identity of such stations, it is clear the activity of one of them [in Turkmenistan] is to monitor Iran," Zohrehvand told state IRNA news agency." Well, duh braniac, of course we want to know if you are conducting secret nuclear tests. Nobody in the world believes you are just going to make electricity with your nuclear plants, and so the UN will set up as many observation stations ringing around Iran as it can. Think of it as a chain of daisies blooming in the harsh landscape. Peace and love, bro...

In fact, we have a contingent of Blackwater employees and some drones with the names of certain Ayatollas on them stationed in Turkmenistan, too. Oops, wasn't this another top secret mission of accountable deniability that no-one is supposed to know about?

Last, Iran is accusing Saudi Arabia of espionage, handing over a visiting nuclear scientist to the US. The Saudi government has responded that we did no such thing, the scientist did it on his own. So quit blowing smoke out of your lower orifice, oh scurvy Shia dogs - though not quite in these exact words...

riding in Geronimo's cadillac...

One of the most important legal matters that finally was settled today, was a class action lawsuit by American Indians against the US gernment.: "The federal government announced on Tuesday that it intends to pay $3.4 billion to settle claims that it has mismanaged the revenue in American Indian trust funds, potentially ending one of the largest and most complicated class-action lawsuits ever brought against the United States... For the agreement to become final, Congress must enact legislation and the federal courts must then sign off on it. Administration officials said they hoped those two steps would be completed in the next few months.

The dispute arises from a system dating to 1887, when Congress divided many tribal lands into parcels — most from 40 to 160 acres — and assigned them to individual Indians while selling off remaining lands. The Interior Department now manages about 56 million acres of Indian trust land scattered across the country, with the heaviest concentration in Western states. The government handles leases on the land for mining, livestock grazing, timber harvesting and drilling for oil and gas. It then distributes the revenue raised by those leases to the American Indians. In the 2009 fiscal year, it collected about $298 million for more than 384,000 individual Indian accounts... The lawsuit accuses the federal government of mismanaging that money. As a result, the value of the trusts has been unclear, and the Indians contend that they are owed far more than what they have been paid."

The lawsuit involves parcels land that Indian families owned on reservation lands that were used for timber production, mineral mining, and other uses that the Federal government gave contracts to private companies. Compensation was given to those families in trusts. Indians claim that the government ripped them off by paying them less money ever since 1887, and the government said, oh crap, we can't find the records going that far back, we even have problems finding anything written before computers were invented... Hence, the settlement, and it's a pretty good testament to Ken Salazar and Barack Obama for choosing to finish the lawsuit now and not string it out many, many more years.

"Elouise Cobell, the lead plaintiff who filed the class-action lawsuit in 1996, said she believed that the Indians were owed more, but that it was better to reach an agreement that could help impoverished trust holders than to spend more years in court. She said she had originally expected the litigation to last only two or three years.

“We are compelled to settle by the sobering realization that our class grows smaller each day as our elders die and are forever prevented from receiving just compensation,“ Ms. Cobell said."

It's one of the world's greatest travesties, how European immigrants have caused genocide on indigenous peoples from America, all throughout Central and South America, to Australia. And we keep telling other nations that we do not have imperialistic ambitions, that we really are a peace loving people...

some late night political jokes:

"Hey, listen to this. According to The New York Times, the Secret Service agents responsible for letting those party crashers sneak into the White House have now been placed on leave. And today, the party crashers felt so bad for them, they called and said, 'Listen, we know how you can get back in.'" –Jay Leno

"Talk about bad timing. The latest issue of Golf Digest has Tiger Woods and President Obama on the cover. I don't think Michelle's going to let the President hang with Tiger too much longer." –Jay Leno

"According to a recent poll, 22% of Americans now say, 'Happy Holidays.' The other 78% say, 'Feliz Navidad.'" –Jay Leno

"President Obama is sending troops to Afghanistan. Well, hell, he ought to be sending them to Tiger Wood's house." –David Letterman

"Tell the truth. How many of you folks are here tonight in the Ed Sullivan Theater because you couldn't sneak into the White House?" –David Letterman

"Honestly, how many of you — the Salahis. They had a big state dinner for the guy and all of a sudden there's a lovely young couple there. Nobody has any idea who they are. 'Oh, hello. How do you do, nice to see you.' It's the Salahis — nobody knows who they are, nobody cares who they are, they weren't invited, nobody wants them there. Since 1980, there have been 91 breaches of security at the White House. Well, 92 if you count George Bush." –David Letterman

"According to the CIA, Osama bin Laden periodically sneaks into Afghanistan. Well, a guy's got to have fun! You know what I mean? What happens in Kabul stays in Kabul." –Conan O'Brien

"President Obama. Did you hear about this? He spoke at a town hall last week and a student stood up and asked him if he would consider legalizing drugs to stimulate the economy. Unfortunately, the student's follow-up question was, 'Do you ever hear colors?'" –Conan O'Brien

"In Iowa, a large group of people waited outside a Sarah Palin book signing to urge her to run for president in 2012. The large group of people was known as the Iowa Democratic Party." –Conan O'Brien

"Hey, are you guys excited about the U.N. climate change conference in Copenhagen? Yeah! Starting today, President Obama said the U.S. can reduce carbon emissions by 17 percent by the year 2020. Then he was like, 'Of course, by then, I'll be out of office, so I can promise anything I want. By 2020, a free Xbox for every man, woman and child. By 2040, a Megan Fox clone for every dude. Not my problem, call President Timberlake.'" –Jimmy Fallon

"Fifteen thousand people talking about climate change for two weeks. It's basically Al Gore's version of Ozzfest." –Jimmy Fallon

"While speaking about Bruce Springsteen at the Kennedy Center last night, President Obama said, 'I'm the President, but he's the Boss.' And then Biden was like, 'Then who the hell is Tony Danza?!'" –Jimmy Fallon

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