"The Obama administration had quite a day today annihilating the people who might vote for them. They appealed the ruling striking down Don't Ask, Don't Tell, even though they are supposed to be for striking it down. And then they said even if California legalized pot, the feds would still come in and bust people. But in fairness to Obama, it is an election year and Democrats can't afford to be seen being for freedom or equality." – Bill Maher
"There is a big difference between a disappointing friend and a deadly enemy. Of course the Democrats are disappointing. That's what makes them Democrats. If they were any more frustrating they'd be your relatives. But in this country they are all that stands between you and darkest night. You know why their symbol is the letter 'D'? Because it's a grade that means good enough, but just barely. You know why the Republican symbol is 'R'? Because it's the noise a pirate makes when he robs you and feeds you to a shark." – Bill Maher
Johann Hari writes about what I wanted to post about today, so I got nothin... If, after the elections, the administration followed England and France's lead and drastically cut back on spending, would our angry tea partyers then get even more angry once they get laid off and people like Sharron Angle's husband's pension shrinks? Will we see riots on the level what is happening in Europe, or will we have a bunch of smug, self-satisfied people sipping tea?
legal cases against former Blackwater employees are slowly falling apart and being filed away under no longer prosecutable. Collect two hundred dollars, get out of jail free, and roll the dice again... For example: "In the most recent and closely watched case, the Justice Department on Monday said that it would not seek murder charges against Andrew J. Moonen, a Blackwater armorer accused of killing a guard assigned to an Iraqi vice president on Dec. 24, 2006. Justice officials said that they were abandoning the case after an investigation that began in early 2007, and included trips to Baghdad by federal prosecutors and F.B.I. agents to interview Iraqi witnesses.
In September, a Virginia jury was unable to reach a verdict in the murder trial of two former Blackwater guards accused of killing two Afghan civilians. Late last year, charges were dismissed against five former Blackwater guards who had been indicted on manslaughter and related weapons charges in a September 2007 shooting incident in Nisour Square in Baghdad, in which 17 Iraqi civilians were killed.
Interviews with lawyers involved in the cases, outside legal experts and a review of some records show that federal prosecutors have failed to overcome a series of legal hurdles, including the difficulties of obtaining evidence in war zones, of gaining proper jurisdiction for prosecutions in American civilian courts, and of overcoming immunity deals given to defendants by American officials on the scene."
“The battlefield is not a place that lends itself to the preservation of evidence.” - Prof Charles Rose"In the immediate aftermath of the Christmas Eve shooting, Mr. Moonen was interviewed, not by the F.B.I., but by an official with the Regional Security Office of the United States Embassy in Baghdad, the State Department unit that supervised Blackwater security guards in Iraq.
Mr. Moonen’s lawyer, Stewart Riley, said that his client gave the embassy officials a statement only after he was issued a so-called Garrity warning — a threat that he might lose his job if he did not talk, but that he would be granted immunity from prosecution for anything he said.
The legal warning and protection given to Mr. Moonen were similar to warnings that embassy officials later gave to Blackwater guards involved in the Nisour Square case. In each case, the agreements presented an obstacle to prosecution in the United States. In effect, the Blackwater personnel were given a form of immunity from prosecution by the people they were working for and helping to protect."
as the new police chief. More than 7000 people have died in this area since 2008 because there are: "Two rival gangs - the Sinaloa and Juarez cartels - fighting for control of Praxeids, whose single highway is on a drugs smuggling route into Texas." Either the Mexican government has given up the fight and is offering her up as fodder, or maybe the drug cartels won't kill a young mother with infant - the Madonna ploy - or else this woman is the genius that the mayor says she is and has ideas that might work. God knows the drug wars have been such a fiasco. I wonder if they would be just as vicious if the US actually tried to eradicate the drug cartels in the US. We would have national bank failures because the large banks and investment companies would no longer have drug money to launder, estimated to be 1/3 of our economy...