Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Sensible Plan for Recovery

"A Sensible Plan for Recovery" from the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS)
(also viewable at ThanksHank.org)

Program Summary:
  • Provide Stimulus for Main Street - Aid to the Real Economy
  • Make Wall Street Speculators Pay for the Bailout - No More Debt
  • Shut down the Casino: Reign in the Unregulated Financial Sector
  • Limit CEO pay and Prohibit Profiteering from the Bailout
The grassroots blowback against the Bush Administration's proposed Wall Street bailout is rooted in deep distrust. The following is a simple program that should be incorporated into the current bailout proposal to address the root causes of our problem and restore trust and confidence in our economic system.

1. A Stimulus For Main Street

A $200 billion Main Street Stimulus Package could bolster the real economy and those left vulnerable by the sub-prime mortgage meltdown. This package should include investment in renewable energy infrastructure, help to distressed homeowners, and federal aid to the States. See the terms of the $56.2 billion proposed Economic Recovery Package proposed by Senators Reid and Byrd.
2. Make Wall Street Speculators Pay for the Bailout
Congress must make the speculators pay for the mess they created. Progressive policy experts have crafted a plan for $900 billion in revenue. Read the Plan here: http://www.ips- dc.org/articles/740. This includes a Securities Transaction Tax ($100 Billion); a Corporate Minimum Income Tax ($60 Billion); a 'Disgorgement' recovery from profligate CEOs ($40 Billion).
3. Shut Down the Casino: Assert oversight of Financial Markets
Shutting down the casino would include re-regulation of the financial sector with new oversight authority and would extend oversight to hedge funds and other unregulated financial instruments.
4. Limits on Excessive CEO Pay and Prohibitions on Profiteering from Bailout
Limits on CEO pay removes one of the incentives that drove the short-term casino mentality in corporate America. Private firms involved in the bailout should be subject to strict controls and conflict-of-interest oversight to prevent profiteering at taxpayer's expense.
Download full proposal here.
TAKE ACTION
1. Educate Congress:
Immediately contact your member of the House of Representatives. Whether they voted for or against the bailout, urge them to embrace this program.

Call Senators to alert them to this proposal and your demands, as the next action in Congress will likely be in the Senate.

Reach Congress at 202-224-3121. Addresses and FAX numbers at VoteSmart.org.
Fun Thank-N-Spank tools here for office visits and FAXing.

2. Organize or attend an action on Wednesday, Oct. 1 in your area using this easy organizing tool.

3. Engage the Media
& Influence the Conversation
:
Write letters to the editor, call in to talk radio programs, send op-eds, and letters to the editor, add comments and links to blogs, online articles, and youtube videos.

For a laugh & to access this information online you can also visit ThanksHank.org
http://thankshank.org





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More On Obsession The Movie

Charity Floods Swing States With Anti-Islam DVD
by Peter Overby
 
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=95076174 
 

Morning Edition, September 26, 2008 · Just after the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, a small charity group flooded campaign battleground states with an inflammatory DVD on radical Islam. Critics say the charity is trying to influence the presidential race.

Earlier this month, subscribers to 70 newspapers in 14 states got a little something extra: A DVD that argues the same hard, militaristic line on terrorism that John McCain takes in his presidential campaign.

It's called Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West. The DVD was made in 2006, before this presidential contest began, and it doesn't even allude to electoral politics.

But, filled with dire warnings about Islamic terrorists, it hit doorsteps seven weeks before Election Day. And critics say it fuels the false whisper campaign that Barack Obama is secretly a Muslim.

Madaline Muir of Montgomery County, Pa., got the DVD in her Philadelphia Inquirer. She called it propaganda.

"It's to influence people. Sent out now. Whenever it was made, 2006, but it's really to influence people in the election and scare people," she said.

Obsession was produced by the Clarion Fund, a 501(c)(3) charity, which cannot get involved in campaign politics.

But its spokesman has said the newspaper distribution had one purpose: to make terrorism a presidential campaign issue where it counts - in the battleground states. He said Clarion did this with a half-million dollar grant from a secret donor.

And others have been promoting Obsession in other ways. Joe Wierzbicki, a political consultant, offered free copies of the DVD to listeners on a talk show in Detroit last month. He was promoting a free screening of Obsession on Sept. 11 in Dearborn, a city with a large Arab population.

Who paid for the screening? And who hired Wierzbicki to handle it? Wierzbicki wouldn't tell local reporters. On Thursday, he didn't respond to NPR's interview requests, and neither did the Clarion Fund.

It's illegal for a 501(c)(3) to advocate expressly for or against a candidate. None of Clarion's three directors have any record of contributing to the candidates. But some political connections do emerge.

Wierzbicki, the movie promoter, also works for two political organizations. He's an organizer for Move America Forward, a political action committee that just produced an ad accusing Obama of playing politics with soldiers' lives.

He also is the PAC coordinator for the Our Country Deserves Better PAC. Its Web site says it has one objective: to defeat Obama.

A multifaith coalition called Hate Hurts America has launched a Web site to counter allegations made in the DVD. And an Arab rights group, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, has asked the Federal Election Commission to investigate Clarion for possible violations of campaign finance law.

"Where is that money coming from? And what is the agenda of those behind this campaign? And who is behind this campaign ultimately?" Ibrahim Hooper, the council's spokesman, asked, regarding the DVD.

Those kinds of questions are often asked at the height of campaign season. But even if the election commission decides to investigate the Clarion Fund, the answers would likely be months away.

Will Evans and Shahien Nasiripour of the Center for Investigative Reporting contributed to this report.


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THE PLAN TO STEAL THE NEXT ELECTION


SPOONAMORE REVEALS THE PLAN TO STEAL THE NEXT ELECTION


Here, in this shattering new interview, Stephen Spoonamore goes into harrowing detail about the Bush regime's election fraud, past, present and--if we don't spread the word right now--to come. Since he's the only whistle-blower out there who knows the perps themselves, and how they operate, we have to send this new piece far and wide.

Here Spoon tells us that McBush's team--i.e., Karl Rove and his henchpersons-- have their plan in place to steal this next election: by 51.2% of the popular vote, and three electoral votes.

He also talks about the major role played by the Christianist far right in the electronic rigging of the vote.

And he defines our electronic voting system as a major threat to US national security, calling for it to be junked ASAP, in favor of hand-counted paper ballots.

Since Spoon is a Republican and erstwhile McCain supporter, as well as a noted specialist in nosing out computer fraud, his testimony is essential--not only for its expertise, but, no less, for the impact that his views will surely have on those Republicans who have been loath to see what Bush & Co. has done to our election system.

That whole story's just about to break. In fact, tomorrow there will be a number of articles appearing, on a recent breakthrough in the lawsuit that Spoon's testimony has enabled, and on other aspects of that all-important case.

MCM

9/26/08: New Spoonamore Interview - E-voting Machines are a National Security Threat

Last week, VR interviewed GOP Cyber security expert Stephen Spoonamore about the upcoming election and his testimony in the new Ohio litigation to take depositions of Karl Rove and others.

The video is posted in full below with ten short clips for You Tube viewing. This interview is so important and explosive that we urge everyone to watch it.

Spoonamore says that the GOP wanted e-voting to steal elections but now foreign governments will be hacking and the winner will be determined by the best hackers. He says that if the GOP wins the hacking competition, McCain will win 51.2 percent with three electoral votes over Obama, and it will be a stolen election.

Spoon also makes a crucial point about the people who have been implicated in much of the election theft: "They are religious extremists." He names those who know about stolen elections, and he insists that the only way to protect this election is with paper ballots, hand-counted.

Check out this extraordinary interview here.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LyByZx5GEaw It's a network, people.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YadsHqxid8I Electronic voting machines are a national security threat.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mbxuXC4QlMk The genie is out of the bottleĊ .
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kOHkY7sJ4ZI Fifty ways to steal an election.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1--KHOo8tkM Mike Connell: Bush IT Guru
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJHmuG8d2bQ The Rapp Family: Ohio election cover-up.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Z7DK3LgiOA Evangelicals and voting machines.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WTe8ppEIic Paper ballots please.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1lrFkRHrRDI McCain/Palin will win by theft.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s07oi2G_K4c People should doubt the vote, it's being stolen.

post


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Sunday, September 28, 2008

Sarah Palin Disney Trailer

FLOW: The Film that Will Change the Way You Think About Water


The Sundance hit "FLOW: For Love of Water" is taking the country by storm and waking people up to our water crisis.


Can anyone really own water? That was the questions that got French filmmaker Irena Salina inspired to take on a mammoth project -- chronicling the global water crisis and solutions -- from privatization to politics to pollution.

Her creation, the award-winning film "FLOW: For Love of Water," was a Sundance hit and now is making its theatrical debut in theaters across the country. Her film includes interviews with some of the world's leading activists, scientists and policy makers. But it also looks at how everyday people are affected around the world -- from the United States to South Africa to India and the growing network of grassroots activists that are coming together.

While the film is alarming, it is also empowering.



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John McCain acted like a jerk





Not once did McCain look Barack Obama in the eye. That's right — John McCain refused to even look at Obama, a man who is making an historic bid to become the next president of the United States. Say what you will about Obama, but I don't think anyone believes that he does not deserve eye contact once in 90 minutes.

Harry Reid On McCain

Sen. Harry Reid gives an inside account of the White House meeting on 9.25.08, reporting Sen. John McCain barely said a word, and that his participation "blew up" negotiations on Capitol Hill. Reid says McCain's behavior this week shows he doesn't have the temperament to be President.

Sarah Palin Interview - With Translation!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

VIDEO COMPILATION: McCain's Angriest Debate Moments

When Rasmussen Has Obama At 50 It Is More 54 percent

Rasmusssen, like Gallup and Mason-Dixon, way over sample Republican by over 25 percent. 



Daily Presidential Tracking Poll
The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Saturday shows Barack Obama attracting 50% of the vote while John McCain earns 44%. This six-point advantage matches Obama's biggest lead yet. Obama is now viewed favorably by 56% of voters

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Zero

"Zero" highlights how many times McCain mentioned the middle class in the first Presidential Debate and features footage from that debate where Obama gave his thoughts on the fundamentals of the economy and explained how John McCain's policies are just a continuation of the last eight years. On the air...

Obsession The Movie: The Outrage

by: Stopthehatemongering

 


Hundreds of complaints, over fifty cancelled subscriptions to the North Carolina News and Observer, public editor criticizes own newspaper for accepting hatemongering video without first identifying who produced it.

'Obsession' was produced by The Clarion Fund. Three of the founders of The Clarion Fund, which is responsible for this movie, are leaders or employees in an extremist group called Aish Hatorah that has been identified on Rick Ross' Cult Watch website as a cult. For more information about it, who the group is and why it is accurate to call it a cult, go to www.progressiveislam.info and search for Aish Hatorah.

Ted Vaden, the public editor at the North Carolina News and Observer writes:
Should The News & Observer allow itself to be used as a vehicle for disseminating offensive speech against a religious faith?

No, was the resounding response from readers who objected to a DVD that was distributed in The N&O last weekend. The video, titled "Obsession," portrays radical Islam as an organized global terrorism campaign aimed at Jews, Christians and America.

It depicts armies of jihadist warriors, suicide bombers in training and armed children chanting anti-Western slogans. Images of Islamist militants are juxtaposed with scenes of goose-stepping Nazi troopers. Graphic footage displays carnage from attacks in New York, London and Madrid.

"This is a film about a radical world view and the threat it poses to us all, Muslim and non-Muslim alike," a title says at the beginning of the video.

After the DVD was distributed Sept. 13, protests poured into News & Observer offices. We received at least 300 e-mail and phone messages, and about 50 people canceled subscriptions

"By taking responsibility for the delivery of this movie, an esteemed newspaper lent credence and stature to a movie which is, at best, hyperbolic, frightening propaganda. Surely, money cannot replace ethics," wrote reader MARY HARRISON.

"Gee, if I was still teaching, this video could be a classroom aid to show how some use hate and religious intolerance to scare people," wrote retired fourth-grade teacher MARY GILBERT of Raleigh. "However, I would not want to poison young minds by having them watch it."

The DVD was distributed by The N&O as an advertising product, inserted along with the advertising circulars into the paper. Jim McClure, vice president for display advertising, said he recognized that the DVD would be controversial and consulted with other executives before accepting it.

But he concluded that the paper should not deny advertisers the opportunity to reach the N&O audience because their message is unpopular or offensive to some. "The ultimate question is, at what point do you draw the line and start censoring things based on comfort level?" he said.

Many readers, citing The N&O's well-publicized revenue problems, accused the paper of selling out scruples for advertising dollars. McClure said the paper doesn't disclose what customers pay for ads, because they expect confidentiality for competitive reasons, but money was not a factor: "There was no consideration that this was so lucrative that we have to lower our standards and accept this. It was accepted on its merits."
....

I have a problem with this particular entry into the free-speech marketplace, because we don't know where the speech is coming from. The DVD package contained a name and address for the sponsor, The Clarion Fund of New York City. A Clarion Web site gives no information about its directors or its funding. It says the film was made possible by a large donor, but doesn't identify who.

Omid Safi, a professor of Islamic studies at UNC-CH, has researched the video and the Clarion Fund. He says the producer of the video is a Canadian native who now is a rabbi and Zionist leader in Israel. Distribution was aided by a Christian Zionist organization headed by Texas evangelist John Hagee, he said, and a Clarion Fund Web site recently published, then removed, an article that endorsed John McCain over Barack Obama for president.

Safi noted that the DVD was placed in newspapers only in key election swing states, suggesting it's intended to scare voters into the McCain camp. "The whole premise of this film is that the West doesn't know what radical Islam represents," Safi said. "Fair enough. Tell us what you represent." My calls to the Clarion Fund were not returned.

I think newspapers have an obligation to be as transparent as possible with readers about the information they provide. In this case, I think the DVD fell short in two respects.

First, it should have been labeled as paid advertising content, as the newspaper would require of a political advertisement. Despite the story on the front page, it's clear from their comments that some readers perceived the video as somehow endorsed by The N&O. McClure said it's the first time he could recall that The N&O has distributed a DVD.

More important is the lack of information about the source of this controversial content. Without that, the readers were not in a position to make an informed judgment about the message they received.

Story here.

Letter to the editor responses to 'Obsession' movie

From the Lansing (MI) State Journal
DVD Drives Away Reader

I found a CD, "Obsession: Radical Islam's War Against the West," tucked into my Sept. 14 LSJ.

Its packaging boldly claimed, "As seen on CNN and FOX News by more than 20 million viewers worldwide."

I am distressed that the LSJ would distribute such inflammatory, fear-coddling material. I am disappointed that Lansing's newspaper has become an extension of CNN and FOX News. I am saddened that the LSJ is unable to distinguish journalism from jingoism.

As a nation and as a people, we are greater than this hate-mongering. We are capable of finding other more constructive ways to address extremism and inequity, nationally and globally. Showcasing war, demonizing "the enemy," and presenting the world in "us vs. them" terms, feeds continual hate, misery, and arms sales - not security.

The LSJ has been shrinking in size. It has now shrunk beyond any recognition as a responsible newspaper. Cancel my subscription.

Laura B. DeLind
Mason
______________

Who's Behind DVDs?

I just received a DVD in that could potentially fuel anti-Muslim hate in the community.

This is a time when every well-meaning individual, regardless of religious or ethnic background, is trying to foster an atmosphere of unity and understanding amongst various diverse groups that make up America. This really prompts me to want to ask the following questions:

Why does the LSJ believe it is appropriate to profit from this kind of hate message? Who actually paid for these to be distributed and how much did it cost? Would you have distributed a similar hate DVD from a racist group, whether white, black, Hispanic, Asian, etc.?

Now, does sending out the DVD in key election swing states have to do with putting a candidate at an advantage? I trust I'd get a response to these questions.

Muideen Kareem
East Lansing
______________

LSJ Wrong On DVD

The inclusion of the anti-Muslim DVD, "Obsession" in the Sept. 14 LSJ does a gross disservice to our community. While radicals may claim affiliation with any religious group, their true culture is one of intolerance and violence. By contrast, Islam is known as a religion that values peace and equilibrium above all else.

Look at Eric Robert Rudolph, identified with the group Christian Identity, who was responsible for the bombing at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics that killed two and injured 111.

How about Timothy McVeigh? Raised as a Catholic, he killed 168 and injured an additional 800 persons in a domestic terrorism attack on the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.

Would the LSJ have distributed a DVD that offers these two as proof that Christian extremists are mounting a threat to America?

At the very least, it should have been incumbent upon the LSJ to seek to identify The Clarion Fund or its financial backers before accepting its 30 pieces of silver to sell out Lansing's Islamic Community.

Michael Forman
East Lansing
______________

LSJ Delivers Fear

When I opened my Sunday paper on Sept. 14, I found the glossy insert, "Obsession." This gift was not a perfume sample. It was a DVD of a movie whose subtitle read "radical Islam's war against the west." It was produced by the Clarion Fund (http://clarionfund.org), a nonprofit organization "whose mission is to educate Americans about issues of national security." Perhaps.

But, the timing of this "gift," the pivotal role that Michigan will play in the November election and the film's shadowy funding suggest the hands of the well-financed, pro-war backers of John McCain - whether McCain himself approves or not. This is the politics of fear, pure and simple.

This is also the Gannett Company, the LSJ's parent, taking a back-handed partisan position in the election. I wonder if they would circulate a free movie that questioned the global war on terror, even if they were paid.

Subscribers and voters, back to you.

Jack Smith
Williamston

______________

From the Des Moines Register

Who's really behind this propaganda?

The DVD enclosed in Sunday's Register contains 60 minutes of propaganda aimed at convincing the viewer that "radical Islam" threatens everyone in our country and that very nearly everyone in Muslim countries grows up learning the beliefs of "radical Islam."

Though several people are named as responsible for making, manufacturing and mailing the DVD, in spite of a strenuous search on the Internet, I learned almost nothing about the executive producer (Peter Mier), the director (Wayne Kopping) and the Clarion Fund Inc., the nonprofit that apparently sponsored the DVD and seems to exist only as a street address in New York and as a 501c(3) with no disclosed source of funding.

What did the Register ask to know about the Clarion Fund Inc. before agreeing to insert the DVD?

-Mark Kane, Des Moines
___________________________

DVD sought to sow fear in the electorate

I am incredibly disappointed in the Register for serving as the delivery agent for "jihad Swift Boating" by including the DVD "Obsession" in the Sept. 14 edition. I watched it in its entirety.

This DVD connects modern Jihadi to Nazi Germany ideologues. It attempts to scare us into a paranoiac approach to our place in the world.

While I do not deny that terrorism is a real threat, and feel strongly that we must all prepare to deal with it, this is a blatant attempt to frighten us into our own brand of Western militancy. The last eight years of the Bush doctrine have taught us the consequences of stirring the hornets' nest of militant Islam in the Middle East. Saber rattling, "shock and awe" and cowboy diplomacy have only fueled hatred of the United States in the Islamic world and threatened our long-term security here at home.

The fact that this DVD, which was produced in 2006, should be released with less than two months before our national election and that it should be targeted for newspapers in swing states is a thinly veiled ploy to frighten the electorate into voting for the perceived "party most likely to protect us."

I shouldn't be surprised that the Republicans are willing to stoop to frightening footage to secure votes. I had not thought the Register would serve as the delivery boy for Jihad hysteria.

- James L. Fritz, Decorah
___________________________

Newspaper insert was vicious propaganda

When I opened the Register this past Sunday to find a hateful insult to Islam, a decent and humane religion, inserted in the paper under the guise of advertising, I felt angry, hurt, violated and disgusted. I am ashamed of the Register, which claims to be "The Newspaper Iowa Depends Upon." Upon which groups will you next release such viciousness?

I had a long chat with your advertising manager and have been advised that the decision to allow this material into the paper was collective, that it took place at many levels of your corporation and that it was a difficult decision. Respectfully, I have to say that I disagree that the decision was so difficult. The ethical line you crossed was as bright as the sun and as wide as day.

I have read the Register for 17 years and have never seen in any publication, short of the neo-Nazi papers that used to get shoved in our mailbox in Pennsylvania during the '60s, such disregard for the difference between propaganda and information. Your paper is responsible for the latter: Let the slimy characters who vend this other stuff pay for their own paper. Don't sully your reputation, my home and the idea of responsible free speech in a democracy.

- David Devonis, Davis City
___________________________

From Denver Post readers

"It was a shock to receive that in my newspaper," said Priscilla Linsley of Denver. "It is wrong to distribute hateful information on Islam."
Sherryl Weston of Westcloud Consulting teaches multiculturalism at Colorado universities. She said the DVD baits people to be anti-Muslim. "The newspaper is not the place for it," Weston said. "It's not news. It's not an ad. It's propaganda."

"How do newspapers justify the right to profit from anti-Muslim hate speech?" asked Imam Ibrahim Kazerooni of the Islamic Center of Al-Beit in Lakewood. "Would newspapers have done the same if the materials had been anti-Semitic?"

Stopthehatemongering :: 'Obsession' movie blowback: Huge outpouring of reader revulsion

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COUNTER ATTACK - hit 'em where it hurts (4.00 / 1)
If you received your DVD by US mail, here's what you can do to take money out of the pockets of The Clarion Fund and redistribute their wealth to the US Postal Service.

Step 1:  Take the DVD out of the mailer.
Step 2:  Render it inoperable.  Use your imagination.  You can scratch it, melt holes in it, snap it, whatever.  
Step 3:  Put the DVD back in the mailer.
Step 4:  Drop it in a mailbox.
Step 5:  When it turns up in your mailbox again, drop it in the mail again.  Repeat this step.

Why would we do this?  The Clarion Fund has to pay postage over and over again on the same DVD.

Does it work?  Yes!  I received my DVD on Tuesday, trashed it, and dropped it in a mailbox on Wednesday.  Lo and behold, it was in my mailbox again today.  Yes, I know it's the same one because I taped the mailer shut with packing tape.  I'll be dropping it in the mailbox again tomorrow morning.  Enjoy!



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Watch The First Debate

Watch entire debate: Video Part 1 » | Video Part 2 » | Video Part 3 »

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Democratic Registration Far Outpacing GOP In Multiple Battle

In a development that could have a significant impact on the presidential race, the rise in registered Democrats has far outpaced Republican registration in many key swing states, giving Dems a clear registration advantage in a lot of them, while...

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What Obama Needs to Do to Nail the Debate

Election 2008



What Obama Needs to Do to Nail the Debate





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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Can McCain Read?

Can McSame Read? What is with his left eye? Has McSame had a stroke?

McCain admits he hasn't had a chance to look at the Paulson plan yet.

Is he kidding? The Paulson plan is like three pages long.






McCain/Palin Want To Cut And Run

From Politico:

McCain suspends his campaign, and asks to postpone Friday's debate, to address the financial crisis.

Both candidates have been marginal players; McCain, though, seems to have the potential to make himself a major one, and his move is a mark, most of all, that he doesn't like the way this campaign is going.

But in terms of the timing of this move: The only thing that's changed in the last 48 hours is the public polling."

If McCain can't do two things at once, I don't see how that's Obama's problem.  This is as cynical a political move as it gets.  Obama's too polite to say HELL NO.  So it's wait and see.

From CSPAN Junkie–



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David Letterman Reacts to John McCain Suspending Campaign

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Real Reason Why McCain Wants To Suspend The Campaign

John McCain campaign manager Rick Davis--under the spotlight because of his work for mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac--is skipping a Wednesday lunch with reporters sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor.

On Tuesday, word came that McCain political director Mike DuHaime will substitute for Davis because he is "heading out on the trail" today.


Davis is the subject of stories in the New York Times and Newsweek about his work for the failed mortgage market makers. At issue right now: did Davis contradict McCain's statement that he has not been involved with Fannie and Freddie for some time.

SOURCE



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Election hangs on 18 percent

With Wall Street in turmoil and the economy hurting, whichever presidential candidate convinces a swath of persuadable voters that he gets it - and can be trusted to lead the country back to fiscal stability - could well win the White House.

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Mason-Dixon poll: Obama +2 in Fla. | Q: Florida Politics

A Mason-Dixon poll (see it here) conducted last Tuesday through Thursday and released today shows Democrat Barack Obama with a 47-to-45 percent lead in Florida over Republican John McCain.

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McCain aide’s firm was paid by Freddie Mac

The disclosure contradicts a statement Sunday night by McCain. One of the giant mortgage companies at the heart of the credit crisis paid $15,000 a month to a firm owned by Senator John McCain’s campaign manager from the end of 2005 through last month, according to two people with direct knowledge of the arrangement.

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Hammering Home the Keating Five Message


By David Sirota
Campaign for America's Future



I went on Fox News on Monday to discuss the financial meltdown. After taking a sober look at the bipartisan nature of Wall Street deregulation, I forced the discussion to focus on John McCain's Keating Five past. It was actually a pretty incredible debate. You can watch it here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l9tHEUJOyn4

Both the Fox News anchor and the GOP spokesman basically freaked out in a desperate attempt to hide the undebatable fact that McCain was rebuked by the Senate Ethics Committee for intimidating regulators on behalf of one of his biggest campaign donors, Charles Keating.

Just for historical reference, here is the CBS News on 3/23/08:

"In his early days as a freshman senator, McCain was known for accepting contributions from Charles Keating Jr., flying to the banker's home in the Bahamas on company planes and taking up Keating's cause with U.S. financial regulators as they investigated him...Keating and his associates raised $1.3 million combined for the campaigns and political causes of all five. McCain's campaigns received $112,000. The investigation ended in early 1991 with a rebuke that McCain 'exercised poor judgment in intervening with the regulators.'"



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Bermuda. It’s more than just a vacation destination for John McCain

In a new ad released Tuesday, Barack Obama's presidential campaign slams Republican candidate John McCain for statements he made during a trip to Bermuda last year promising to protect the tax loopholes that allow corporations to do business from there and other offshore territories.

"Bermuda. It’s more than just a vacation destination for John McCain," a narrator says in the new ad.


Monday, September 22, 2008

These yard sign questions are making my brain bleed. Please stop.

Obama Campaign Organizers Trying To Win Election Instead of Get You Yard Signs





In a controversial move sure to upset millions of people, Barack Obama's campaign has decided to forgo the traditional time-wasting distribution of chum (yard signs, bumper stickers, etc.) to try and win the election.



Read The Story.............

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McCain: A prescription for disaster

Barack Obama is out with a new ad, eviscerating John McCain for an article he recently wrote calling for the health care industry to have as much regulatory freedom as its banking counterpart.

McCain Lying to POW/MIA families

We should have respect for McCain's service, capture and suffering during the Vietnam War and much of what he has done since. But this unsettling article raises the question of his commitment to those left behind. It addresses, too, the unwillingness of the press to investigate McCain's treatment of POW/MIA families and his dismissal of their concerns as the "bizarre rantings of MIA hobbyists." He even brought one grieving woman to tears because she was, by searching for her brother, "denigrating" McCain's "patriotism."

After reading Schanberg's article, it's difficult to believe that McCain had such an epiphany, as it was his own reputation that he seemed most concerned about when reacting to the efforts of those trying to learn what happened to the people they love -- left behind in Vietnam.

Schanberg has unearthed a lie of major proportions if indeed McCain did not do all he could do to locate those still missing after his return from Vietnam. Whether he did or not, we need to know. It does not mean he did not serve his country honorably in the Navy. It does mean he may have done less than he could have done when he returned. It may mean that he was abusive to people who deserved better.

Read Schanberg's Article





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Sunday, September 21, 2008

Slacker Uprising

Watching Michael Moore's new film "Slacker Uprising" - which documents his 62-stop tour through swing states in the weeks leading up to the 2004 election - is a strange, awkward experience.

After all, you spend 97 minutes watching Moore passionately stump for Democratic candidates John Kerry and John Edwards in packed, cheering arenas and auditoriums, all the while knowing the election's outcome. And since those who agree with Moore's politics will be the ones who see this movie - which you can sign up to download for free - it will likely be hard for some to revisit and relive that time.

SEEING 'SLACKER'

• Michael Moore's latest movie is being released for free as an online download.
• It will be available Tuesday through Oct. 13.
• Anyone may sign up now to receive the free download at http://slackeruprising.com.
• A DVD with extras - including a feature called "Crank Calling Pfizer" - will also be available for $9.95.

Moore calls "Slacker" a concert film, and the description is apt. Not only do we see Moore on stage and behind the scenes during the tour, but we see musicians like Joan Baez, Eddie Vedder, Tom Morello (of Rage Against the Machine) and Steve Earle perform at the rallies.

In truth, there's a bit too much of this in "Slacker" - the songs, filmed in their entirety, bog down the pace - and Moore's ego shows when he takes care to include footage of Baez, in an interview, likening him to Bob Dylan, and of Vedder singing Moore's praises in an introduction.

The film fares far better when depicting the controversies surrounding the tour. First, a few Republicans accused Moore of illegally "buying" votes by handing out underwear and ramen noodles to new, mostly college-age voters who promised to show up on election day (hilariously, this was nicknamed "noodlegate"); and later, student organizations in Utah and San Diego were pressured to cancel Moore's campus appearances.

It's no coincidence that these are among the most compelling and entertaining parts of the movie, for they offer something that much of the rest of the film sorely lacks: conflict. Moore's best movies, such as "Bowling for Columbine" and "Sicko," work because he's posing important questions and, through the medium of film, cheekily exploring various answers, taking us along for the ride. With "Slacker," we're literally along for a ride, but what exactly we're meant to glean from it is far from clear.

Fortunately, Moore's smart-alecky humor (including some funny fake ads for George W. Bush) provides the film with moments of levity. At times, however, his targets are too easy. The Moore protesters who get air time in "Slacker," for example, are the ones who sound sublimely uninformed and silly, when obviously, there are articulate, thoughtful people on both sides of the political divide.


And because the 2004 election's outcome ominously haunts "Slacker," you wonder why Moore chose not to explore, or even broach the subject, of how he eventually reconciled investing so much time, effort and passion in an election that didn't go his way. The silence on this subject in "Slacker" seems deafening.


Down Load Video at: http://slackeruprising.com

Posted From: http://blog.mlive.com


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SNL: John McCain

Rasmussen Polls Are Over Sampling Republicans


Watch How Rasmussen contort like a gymnast, to explain their bias



In a year in which Democrats have a lead of 11 million registered voters over Republicans, and have been adding to that advantage through a robust field operation, are pollsters over-sampling Republicans?

Despite a raft of advantages in the electorate for Democrats, in

September's first Gallup tracking poll, an equal number of Republicans and Democrats were surveyed (including "leaners") from Sept. 3-5, compared to a 10-point Democratic identification advantage two weeks ago. That partisan makeup of the polling pool resulted in a 5-point lead for McCain in Sept. 5 tracking poll. Meanwhile, the new CBS poll features a 6-point swing in partisan composition toward Republicans, which plays some role in the poll's two-point lead for McCain. Finally, the latest USA Today poll, which claims a four-point edge for McCain, was arrived at after a 10-point swing in partisan makeup toward GOP respondents.



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Friday, September 19, 2008

The Race Card Has Been Thrown

When politicians interject race into a campaign, they seldom do it directly. Consider McCain's new ad, which the campaign says it will be airing nationally:

This is hardly subtle: Sinister images of two black men, followed by one of a vulnerable-looking elderly white woman.



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McLobbyist

From top to bottom, the McCain campaign is dominated by lobbyists. At least 177 Washington lobbyists have been on his campaign staff or helped him raise money.

McCain's chief foreign policy adviser, Randy Scheunemann, made millions lobbying for foreign countries like Georgia. McCain has taken the most confrontational position towards Russia since the conflict with Georgia began. That's not putting your country first.

Senior McCain campaign adviser Charlie Black lobbied for Big Oil for eight years. McCain's tax plan would save Big Oil $4 billion while doing nothing to help most families. Starting to connect the dots yet?

And to head his transition team, in case he's elected, McCain chose a Washington super-lobbyist -- the same super-lobbyist Richard Nixon hired to lobby against his impeachment.

 Share this with your friends, then find more information about the lobbyists dominating McCain's campaign at McLobbyist.com:
For More Info :
http://mclobbyist.com

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Thursday, September 18, 2008

A Plan For Change

"Plan for Change" is a two-minute advertisement in which Senator Obama will speak directly to the nation on his view of the state of the economy and what he would do to fix it if he is elected president


GOP pollster says voters will shift to Obama over economy

Republican pollster Frank Luntz says voters who had been shifting toward John McCain will begin shifting back toward Barack Obama over the next two days

read more | digg story

John McCain On Social Security

John McCain had his way in 2005 when Bush tried to privatize Social Security, this week's Wall Street collapse would be taking Social Security down with it.

Obama is running this ad in Michigan, but it really should be running everywhere:

McCain Seen as Less Likely to Bring Change, Poll Finds

Senator John McCain is widely viewed as a “typical Republican” who would continue or expand President Bush’s policies.

read more | digg story

McCain Attacks Wall Street Greed, But 83 Wall Street Lobbyis

McCain's own campaign has been loaded with the Wall Street types he's been denouncing.In the past few days, as the economic crisis has deepened, Senator John McCain has been decrying the excesses of Wall Street. At a campaign rally in Tampa on Tuesday, he vowed that he and Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, if elected, "are going to put an end to the reckless conduct, corruption, and unbridled greed that have caused a crisis on Wall Street." He noted that the "foundation of our economy ... has been put at risk by the greed and mismanagement of Wall Street and Washington."

read more | digg story

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Palin's Personal Emails Leaked

The hackers gained entry to Mrs Palin's Yahoo! email account, which she used for official business as Alaska's governor.


They have disclosed as evidence some personal messages she received since being selected by John McCain as the Republican vice-presidential candidate.


Members of Anonymous, an online group known for its attacks against the Church of Scientology, claimed responsibility for the hack, and posted copies of two emails, a contact list and family photos to Wikileaks, a website that hosts leaked documents.

The McCain campaign reacted angrily to the hacking, saying in a statement: "This is a shocking invasion of the governor's privacy and a violation of law.


"The matter has been turned over to the appropriate authorities and we hope that anyone in possession of these e-mails will destroy them."

The disclosure has raised fresh questions about Mrs Palin's use of nongovernment email accounts to conduct state business.


Read The emails HERE








http://gawker.com/5051334/palin-emails-reveal-press-hate

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

John McCain Invented The Balckberry?

John McCain not only invented the blackberry, he tossed in wifi as an afterthought.



Let's go back and see how McCain's hand guided that development.  


With the Telecommunications Act of 1996, the Senate passed the first major revision to telecommunications law in 62 years which provided the foundation for much of the cell phone and Internet regulation over the next decade.  The bill passed 81-18 and was signed into law by President Clinton.  McCain voted against the act.


In 2002, McCain authored the "Consumer Broadband Deregulation Act of 2002" which eliminated the requirement of the 1996 law that telecommunication companies provide access to competitors.  It didn't pass.


In 2003, the Internet Tax Freedom Act was passed, putting in place a moratorium on taxes for activities on the Intenet. The bill had 11 cosponsors – McCain wasn't one of them. He did vote for the bill, but since it passed 97-3, that's definitely "guiding" with a small 'g.'  Granted, this wasn't directly a bill about wireless, but since McCain doesn't seem to have authored any law on wireless technology, I'm having to search for connections.

Of pending legistlation, McCain is not a sponsor of the "Connect the Nation Act" – though Senator Obama is. McCain is not a sponsor of Senator Rockefeller's call for a universal next generation broadband by 2015 – though Senator Obama is. And of course, McCain isn't a sponsor of the "Internet Freedom Act" that would ensure net neutrality – though Senator Obama is. That last is no surprise. McCain has repeatedly opposed net neutrality, saying that companies have a right to restrict speed or even limit access to sites "when you control the pipe you should be able to get profit from your investment."

So,  McCain's "guiding hand" seems to consist of opposing the legislation that laid the groundwork for the communications we have today, and authoring failed legislation designed to benefit big carriers. Of course, we should probably be glad that John McCain really didn't invent the cell phone or wifi, otherwise we'd all be getting our wireless services from one monolithic company free to restrict our access to only the pages that pay for the privilege. And we'd all be using "Jitterbugs."


source : Dailykos.com 
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How can John McCain fix our economy

"How can John McCain fix our economy if he doesn't understand it's broken?"


Barack Obama's Neighbor to Neighbor Canvassing Tool

Neighbor to Neighbor is a new online tool that allows you to view a list of voters in your neighborhood, and provides a handy script to let them find out more about our campaign.

read more | digg story

Flash Back: The Keating Five

For anyone not aware of the Keating Five, here's a very simple summary:

Charles Keating owned a savings and loan in California. He was illegally using the money of his bank's customers to give loans to himself and friends that they didn't have to repay, and to speculate on risky real estate investments, which was strictly forbidden by U.S. law (the latter was one cause of the Great Depression).


When the feds found out what was going on and launched an investigation into Keating and his company, Keating called five U.S. Senators whom he had wined, dined, and lavished with hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign donations and personal gifts for years.

Keating asked the five Senators to tell the feds to bug off, and the five Senators, later known as the Keating Five, obliged, meeting with federal investigators twice and pressuring them to stop investigating Keating's crimes. They bought Keating some time, but the feds didn't give up and eventually Keating was nailed. The reason the feds were so persistent was because Keating wasn't playing with mere chump change. Keating blew $3.4 billion through illegal personal loans and bad investments, and the FDIC eventually had to reimburse Keating's customers who had been ripped off. (The FDIC is a part of the federal government funded by taxpayers dollars, so when Keating stole from his customers you and I were the ones who paid for it.)


(Background Info - Keating wasn't the only Savings and Loan owner who was committing fraud, 20% of the S&L's that failed during that three year period were found to have been caused by fraud and/or insider trading. The failure of the Lincoln Savings and Loan and other S&L's pushed the country into a recession, costing the U.S. government $126 billion dollars in FDIC insurance payouts to investors. All of this came to a crescendo during the first year of the presidency of George H.W. Bush, who pushed through the S&L bailout plan to keep the economy afloat.)


When the involvement of the Keating Five was made public, a scandal erupted and the Senate Ethics Committee launched their own four month long hearing into whether the Keating Five senators had violated Senate ethics rules. It was a giant mess (see the Keating Five Videos section). The other four Senators left office either immediately or within one term. John McCain was formally rebuked by the Senate Ethics Committee for exercising "poor judgment" for intervening with the federal regulators on behalf of Keating, but because McCain accepted Keating's gifts of travel and vacations to Bahama while McCain was a member of the House of Representatives (he served one term there before moving to the Senate), the Senate claimed they had no jurisdiction to censure McCain. (However the meetings to pressure federal regulators occurred during the first few months of McCain serving in the Senate in 1987, so that excuse doesn't hold up)


John McCain then went back to the drawing board and re-invented himself as "the Straight-Talk Express" and the media gobbled it up. "Tax-Evading-Criminal" doesn't sound as catchy as "Straight-Shooting-War-Hero".


Ever since the scandal, when McCain lies today, it's never questioned, because he's a "straight talker". The man has more skeletons in his closet than any politician in history. The Keating Five is just one bone.


There are two fantastic articles about the Keating Five we highly recommend reading.

One is from 1989, written by the Phoenix New Times, called McCain: The Most Reprehensible of the Keating Five. That article does a good job of capturing the anger at the time at John McCain and the other corrupt Senators. It took an incredible spin job for McCain to have survived the scandal.


The other article is from Slate.com, written in 2000 and titled, Is John McCain A Crook?



Source: http://mccainkeatingfive.com/


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Pakistan Is the Problem...

Christopher Hitchen's argues that Pakistan is the problem and Obama is the only candidate willing to take it on....

read more | digg story

Debunked: Ten Conservative Myths About National Security

Going after the most dangerous myths spun by conservatives after 9/11.To begin with, "Islamofascism" itself is an impossible idea, and those who promote it betray a fundamental political ignorance. True fascism can only occur within an industrialized nation-state, few of which exist in the Islamic world. And many of our most intransigent problems with terrorism come from the opposite problem: modern terrorists have no state affiliations, and are thus free to drift across international borders with fluid ease. Defeating them means coming to grips with this fact. Calling them "fascists" makes it that much harder to grasp.Worse, "Islamofascism" suggests that the Muslim world is some kind of vast monolithic conspiracy, equal in might and will to the Soviet Union or Nazi Germany back in the day -- and that's another dangerous delusion. Just like Christianity, Islam covers a widely diverse range of cultures and political attitudes. In fact, the overwhelming majority of the world's 1.6 billion Muslims are not jihadis, and consider terrorism abhorrent. Turning one-quarter of the world's people into The Enemy will blind us to the subtle but critical distinctions within Islam. It will doom us to serious blunders, alienate potential allies, and cost us important opportunities to make real inroads against terrorism.

read more | digg story

Honor Comes with Honesty

Obama Nails the Winning Message: "Honor Comes with Honesty." This will win this election. Repeat it over and over.

Finally, the Obama campaign has articulated the winning message to counterpunch the shameless lying from McCain-Palin. They have raised the issue of McCain's (lack of) honor.

Following Senator Claire McCaskill's catchy "Honor comes with honesty" rhetoric on ABC's This Week, Obama has released an excellent new ad titled "Honor" that explicitly quotes The Washington Post on McCain's "disgraceful and dishonorable campaign."







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Monday, September 15, 2008

Debunked: Ten Conservative Myths About National Security

Going after the most dangerous myths spun by conservatives after 9/11.

read more | digg story

Hockey Moms Against Sarah Palin

Obama Lays Out Plans To Woo Women Voters

During a conference call with national female supporters on Monday, Barack Obama and his aides outlined a comprehensive strategy to target female supporters who could be on the fence between his and John McCain's candidacy.

read more | digg story

A New Site Keeps Track of the McCain Campaign Lies

John McCain may be trying to sell himself as a "maverick" and a "straight talker" who will tell the truth no matter the consequences, but independent, non-partisan watchdog groups aren't buying it. But, since he wrapped up his party's nomination, John McCain has offered more of the same false attacks and smears. To date, independent, nonpartisan fact checkers have published more than 50 fact checks debunking John McCain's lies and distortions.
To hold John McCain accountable to his own standard, the Democratic National Committee will count and chronicle the lies here on the McCainPedia's "Count the Lies" page.
 
 
 
 

 
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