But this makes her nuttier:
That photo might look familiar to some of the Philly liberal crowd. Hilarious.
But this makes her nuttier:
That photo might look familiar to some of the Philly liberal crowd. Hilarious.
I sense jail for contempt of court is coming for someone:
California attorney and “birther” proponent Orly Taitz must pay $20,000 in sanctions, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Monday.
In the two-page decision, the appeals court states that after considering Taitz’ arguments, “we find them unpersuasive and therefore affirm the district court’s sanctions judgment.”
Jihad Jane? More like Margaret Mitty:
A woman from Montgomery County who used the online nickname of "JihadJane" has been indicted for conspiring to provide support to Islamic terrorists with whom she allegedly plotted to kill a Swedish artist.
Prosecutors accused Colleen R. LaRose, 46, of offering to use her American looks and identity to help foreign terrorists. She was arrested last October but her incarceration was kept secret until today.
American and foreign government used the time to sweep up a terrorist network in Ireland, according to news media in that country. The Irish Times said seven men, most from other nations, were arrested as part of a plot to murder a Swedish cartoonist who drew controversial images of the Prophet Muhammad.
I also like the fact that Ms. LaRose's other alias was "Fatima LaRose". Nothing like using your own name as your cover. Easier to remember that way.
Whether I am right or not about her being just a thrill-seeker, she's going byebye for a long time. Enjoy federal prison, Coll.
Update: Here again is the evil supervillian, disguising herself in the most cunning manner possible:
How did they catch her? Nice animal print, by the way. Isn't that haraam, though? I'm not even going to ask about the eyebrows. As much as I want to. Cruella.
Pennsylvania's autocratic liquor laws in action:
Based on a complaint from someone the State Police refuse to identify, three teams of officers converged last Thursday on the three bars, run by Leigh Maida and her husband, Brendan Hartranft. Checking their inventories against the state's official list of more than 2,800 brands, the cops seized four kegs and 317 bottles, totaling 60.9 gallons of beer, according to police calculations.
First, the state requires beer sellers to register their offerings by name by paying a $75 fee. There is nothing done to justify the registration; it only exists to raise revenue.
Second, more than half the beer seized by the State Police were actually on the approved list, but clerical errors and laziness on the part of the authorities meant is was confiscated anyway.
Third, the beers confiscated are sold all over town, and all over the state, but a complaint by an anonymous individual (read: well-connected competitor) resulted in this couple's three great bars being raided.
My response was to run right out and have dinner at Resurrection Ale House. I recommend you pick one of the three places and give them your business:
Resurrection Ale House, at 2425 Grays Ferry Ave.; Local 44, at 44th and Spruce streets, in West Philadelphia; and Memphis Taproom, 2331 E. Cumberland St., Port Richmond.
This is almost too bad to be believed:
According to the filings in Blake J Robbins v Lower Merion School District (PA) et al, the laptops issued to high-school students in the well-heeled Philly suburb have webcams that can be covertly activated by the schools' administrators, who have used this facility to spy on students and even their families. The issue came to light when the Robbins's child was disciplined for "improper behavior in his home" and the Vice Principal used a photo taken by the webcam as evidence. The suit is a class action, brought on behalf of all students issued with these machines.
According to the complaint (pdf), the district has issued a laptop to all students and never informed them that the webcams could be activated remotely. The suit alleges violations of state and federal law. This is a civil suit, but wiretapping is also a crime under both state and federal law. If the allegations are true, someone's going to jail.
A member of the Iowa legislature, Jason Schultz, has introduced a bill:
A judicial officer shall not use judicial precedent, case law, penumbras, or international law as a basis for rulings. A judicial officer shall only use the Constitution of the United States, the Constitution of the State of Iowa, and the Code of Iowa as the basis for any ruling issued by such judicial officer. The only source material that may be used for interpreting the Constitution of the United States by a judicial officer in this state shall be the Federalist papers and other writings of the founding fathers to describe the intent of the founding fathers, and if such source material is used, the full context of the source material must be used by the judicial officer.
This fails for both legal and common sense reasons. First of all, application of the Supremacy Clause prohibits states from interpreting the federal constitution in any way that contradicts the interpretation of the U.S. Supreme Court or the applicable Circuit Court of Appeals. (The same goes for federal statutes, which Schultz's bill neglects to mention at all.) This bill implicitly makes an absolute claim of state sovereignty and denial of the authority of the U.S. government. It amounts to a declaration of secession.
Secondly, due process under both the Iowa and U.S. constitutions requires that precedent have legal weight, at least in criminal matters. If a state supreme court rules on the interpretation of a criminal law, then people in that state must be entitled to rely on that ruling in guiding their own behavior. Schultz's bill, which is nominally about making judicial decision-making less variable, actually would have the opposite effect: Every judge who considered a statute would be required to decide what that statute meant de novo. No one could ever be truly sure was legal and illegal.
Which brings us to the common sense objection: Who makes decisions like this? Who reinvents the wheel every time an issue arises? It's idiotic to not consider what other people thought about any complex problem in the past when you approach a similar question. It's essentially mandated stupidity.
I know it's nutpicking, but look at the size of that nut. It's pretty big.
Terrorists who want to overthrow the United States government must now register with South Carolina's Secretary of State and declare their intentions -- or face a $25,000 fine and up to 10 years in prison.
I disagree with the article when it says that this statute is "redundant" with current laws against terrorism. Advocating mass murder is not the same as committing it - advocating it is protected free speech. The article equates the law with those which imposes a tax on the proceeds of crime, but again, one has to commit a crime to profit from it. This statute is unconstitutional on its face.
While clearly aimed at brown people, the article raises the obvious question:
While the intention of the law is apparently aimed at Islamic terrorists, it's unclear in the law's wording whether it can be applied to right-wing militias, some of whom have reputedly called for the overthrow of the US government. The law states that "fraternal" and "patriotic" groups are exempt from the law, but only if they don't "contemplate the overthrow of the government."
To the extent there is any enforcement of this statute, I think it will be held to be unconstitutional as applied, because Tea Party types calling for the unconstitutional removal of Obama from office will tacitly be exempted from it.
I tend to agree with this:
"In the long and storied history of utterly retarded legislation in South Carolina, we may have finally found the legal statute that takes the cake for sheer stupidity, which we think you’ll agree is saying something."
There seems to have been a new outbreak of panty-sniffing on the right the last few weeks. Some of the usual suspects in the Malkinverse were all worked up about some jackass writing letters to newspapers and decided to put on their sleuthing hats and out him. Nothing gets the amateur detective shut-ins in the right blogosphere harder than posting a screenshot publicly avaliable information and then patting themselves on the back about their investigative prowess.
As angry as I ever get about the right, it never occurs to me to try to go after their families.
But did you know that Mithras is the god of Light? It's true.
This sounds serious:
Alleging a plot to wiretap Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu's office in the Hale Boggs Federal Building in downtown New Orleans, the FBI arrested four people Monday, including James O'Keefe, a conservative filmmaker whose undercover videos at ACORN field offices severely damaged the advocacy group's credibility.
Also arrested were Joseph Basel, Stan Dai and Robert Flanagan, all 24. Flanagan is the son of William Flanagan, who is the acting U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Louisiana, the office confirmed. All four were charged with entering federal property under false pretenses with the intent of committing a felony.
O'Keefe's confederates dressed up as telephone company employees, which I think is as serious a crime as the wiretapping. Buh bye.
(Via Unstable Isotope.)
A rare victory for common sense:
Bowing to Pentagon concerns and an international outcry, a Michigan arms company said Thursday that it would immediately stop embossing references to New Testament scriptures on rifle sights it sells the military.
The company, Trijicon Inc., has multimillion-dollar contracts with the Pentagon for advanced telescopic sights that are widely used in Iraq and Afghanistan. Trijicon also said it would provide the Pentagon with 100 free kits to use for removing the lettering on existing weapons.
The Army and Marines are setting about removing the references immediately, which I imagine involves filing down the metal and re-bluing it. The bad news?
Neither the company nor the Pentagon released estimates of how many weapons carried the references, but the number appeared likely to be at least in the tens of thousands. The Marine Corps has an ongoing $660 million contract with Trijicon for more than 200,000 of the high-tech rifle sights, said Capt. Geraldine Carey, a Marine spokeswoman.
Which means it will be years, or perhaps never, before all the inscriptions are removed.
John Edwards admitted this morning to being the father of Frances Quinn Hunter, the two-year-old daughter of his former mistress Rielle Hunter.
As we survey the ruin that is the nation Democratic party, remember: This guy could have been our presidential candidate.
So, absent a very unlikely upwelling of Democratic political competence, tonight ends any possibility of getting any material legislation passed until ... when? 2015?
Also, thank you to all the people who sat on their hands the past few months and bitched about Obama. Now you have more to bitch about. Congratulations.
The U.S. military, doubling down on stupid:
[A] spokesperson for CentCom, the U.S. military's overall command in Iraq and Aghanistan, said he did not understand why the issue was any different from U.S. money with religious inscriptions on it.
"The perfect parallel that I see," said Maj. John Redfield, spokesperson for CentCom, told ABC News, "is between the statement that's on the back of our dollar bills, which is 'In God We Trust,' and we haven't moved away from that."
Said Redfield, "Unless the equipment that's being used that has these inscriptions proved to be less than effective for soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and military folks using it, I wouldn't see why we would stop using that.
What's next? Inscribing little Xian fish symbols on the brass of every round of ammunition? The only thing I know for sure is that Maj. John Redfield is a fucking dumbass.
Coded references to New Testament Bible passages about Jesus Christ are inscribed on high-powered rifle sights provided to the United States military by a Michigan company.
The sights are used by U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and in the training of Iraqi and Afghan soldiers. The maker of the sights, Trijicon, has a $660 million multi-year contract to provide up to 800,000 sights to the Marine Corps, and additional contracts to provide sights to the U.S. Army.
U.S. military rules specifically prohibit the proselytizing of any religion in Iraq or Afghanistan and were drawn up in order to prevent criticism that the U.S. was embarked on a religious "Crusade" in its war against al Qaeda and Iraqi insurgents.
One of the citations on the gun sights, 2COR4:6, is an apparent reference to Second Corinthians 4:6 of the New Testament, which reads: "For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."
Other references include citations from the books of Revelation, Matthew and John dealing with Jesus as "the light of the world." John 8:12, referred to on the gun sights as JN8:12, reads, "Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
Trijicon confirmed to ABCNews.com that it adds the biblical codes to the sights sold to the U.S. military. Tom Munson, director of sales and marketing for Trijicon, which is based in Wixom, Michigan, said the inscriptions "have always been there" and said there was nothing wrong or illegal with adding them. Munson said the issue was being raised by a group that is "not Christian."
This is just so goddamned stupid. I don't know what else to say.
Spokespeople for the U.S. Army and the Marine Corps both said their services were unaware of the biblical markings.
I don't believe for a second they didn't know.
They said officials were discussing what steps, if any, to take in the wake of the ABCNews.com report. It is not known how many Trijicon sights are currently in use by the U.S. military.
Too late, the damage is done. But you better act fast anyway, assholes.
The biblical references appear in the same type font and size as the model numbers on the company's Advanced Combat Optical Guides, called the ACOG.
A photo on a Department of Defense Web site shows Iraqi soldiers being trained by U.S. troops with a rifle equipped with the bible-coded sights.
*headdesk* Thanks Trijicon/Pentagon, you sold out our Muslim allies.
"It allows the Mujahedeen, the Taliban, al Qaeda and the insurrectionists and jihadists to claim they're being shot by Jesus rifles," [Michael "Mikey" Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, an advocacy group that seeks to preserve the separation of church and state in the military,] said.
Weinstein, an attorney and former Air Force officer, said many members of his group who currently serve in the military have complained about the markings on the sights. He also claims they've told him that commanders have referred to weapons with the sights as "spiritually transformed firearm[s] of Jesus Christ."
Want to throttle someone now.
(Via Stephen Silver.)
Field Negro asks, "Dear God, is it too late to trade one fat rich drug addict for 50,000 Haitians?"
The ACLU of Pennsylvania passes along an email they received:
The first question we have here at our scranton office is what is wrong with you Athiest Assholes. We recently heard on the news about the bullshit your group started at the Luzerne County Courthouse. Our economy is hurting, the spirts of our citizens are weak for many reasons, and at this time of year, many, close to all people look towards tradition as a sign of good things around the holidays. In one, threatening blow, by threatening to sue Luzerne County for helping keep hope in their citizens, you have done nothing but demoralize the area, and make yourselves look like total Assholes and Athiests. Keep you religious beliefs to yourself. Bow down to your budah or raghead or dot head, or indian gas station god, or whatever you probable domestic terrorists bow down to, and keep out of others innocent business.
This part of the closing is priceless:
Proof read and approved by a company office of over 100!
I love that a hundred of them can't spell "proofread" or "atheist".
I'm not real big on arguments from authority, but it's just fun to think of the heads imploding when the kill-billers who are so focused on personalities (positively and negatively - Obama, Harry Reid, Bernie Sanders, "access bloggers", Howard Dean, etc.) read:
Health care reform does nothing, they cry — except for covering 30 million people, ending overpayment on Medicare advantage, making the first real attempt to use medical evidence to guide health care spending, starting up a wide range of pilot projects on cost control while empowering an expert panel to put the results of those projects into effect, providing financial incentives to limit excess coverage, and so on.
But aside from that, you see, it doesn’t do anything.
Of course, there is still time for the conference committee to produce a bill that's such a shit sandwich that no one can swallow it - meaning, the bad clearly outweighs the good. We'll see.
The options are literally "pass this HANDOUT to the insurance industries (that they are still lobbying against!) that will insure millions of people and improve the social safety net for those in danger of losing their insurance" or "fuck off home to let people continue to die because we got super mad at Senator Fuckface from Connecticut." There is not a third "Alan Grayson and Keith Olbermann and Matt Taibbi are all elected to a new kind of Senate that only needs three votes to pass legislation and they declare us Canada for Christmas" option.
Cole, funny and true:
I disagree with Dean about the bill, and I recognize I may very well be wrong and he probably is right about that. But what I refuse to back down from is the idea that is somehow good politics for the former head of the DNC to be trashing a Democratic President on a right-wing television show. It is bad politics, it is bad optics, and it is a sign of an uneven temperament and bad judgment. And we can all agree that it is well established that I know a thing or too about being a hothead and having bad judgment.
Using cheap, downloadable programs like SkyGrabber, militants were apparently able to watch and record the video feed — and potentially be tipped off when U.S. and coalition forces are stalking them. The $25.95 software was originally designed to let users download movies and songs off of the Internet. Turns out, the program lets you nab Predator drone feeds just as easily as pirated copies of The Hangover.And here’s the real scandal: Military officials have known about this potential vulnerability since the Bosnia campaign.
Because I wish they could read Brad:
The guy always presented himself as a middle-of-the-road establishment Democrat who eschewed populism in favor of “post-partisanship” (whatever the hell that means). And c’mon, people: how much change could you really expect from a guy who chose Joe Biden to be his veep?
Now, I knew this perfectly well going into the 2008 election. And I was still incredibly enthusiastic about supporting the guy. Why? Because this country had been run for the previous eight years by sociopathic wingnuts and I didn’t want another sociopathic wingnut running the country for another four years. I didn’t want to go to war with Iran and I didn’t want to go to war with Syria. Also, I didn’t want to have a certifiable moron as vice president. These sorts of things are important to me.
And yes, I realize how sad it is that my standards have fallen so low, but that’s how things are. As long as my government is not actively trying to destroy the entire world, I feel OK about things. Others’ mileage may vary, but that’s sorta where I’m at.
It's the 110th meeting of Army and Navy football tomorrow. What that means for the locals tonight is a lot of drunk mids and cadets out and about. Tomorrow, it means a metric shitload of absolutely obliterated mids and cadets puking in bars, cabs and other places you might otherwise want to be. Good if you're a hooker or own a bar (or both!), otherwise ... not so much.
Let's be careful out there, people.
Love this quote about preachers who create cults around themselves:
"Jesus didn't say you have to cook for me or pay for my vacations."
The anecdotes are depressingly familiar.
Gun nut Dave Kopel is becoming my fav Volokhian:
My view is that there is not a scintilla of evidence to suggest that our President is a jihadi.
Just his view, ya understand. Not saying it's not possible Obama is a jihadi bent on destroying the U.S. Funny stuff then follows in comments: Some say jihadis are more respectable than Obama, the rest of us laugh.
It's hard for me to care about events in the Senate when dumbass conservatives from my own party are the ones standing in the way of even a mild kind of reform. What should I do, call Blanche Lincoln's office and scream at her staffer?
Just think, if we had gone all-in on single payer, this never would have happened. All opposition would have been swept away by a tidal wave of public ... wait, why are you laughing?
I drove past the corner of 20th & Market in center city Philadelphia today, and on the southeast corner was a demonstration against the health care reform bill. There were at least six people, one of them had an American flag and another had a Gadsden flag ("Dont Tread on Me"), and there was some kind of sign about "freedom". I then noticed a young man who looked like he had taken his jacket and tie off who was handing out literature. It was then that I twigged to the fact that Blue Cross is on that block. Subtle, guys.
I wish I had gotten a picture, but I was laughing too hard.
Over at Volokh, professional gun nut David Kopel looks at a Newsweek cover ("How Do You Solve a Problem Like Sarah?") and sees a strong likeness between Sarah Palin and -- wait for it - Maria from The Sound of Music:
[The Mother Superior] ships Maria off to a job outside the abbey–a job for which Maria is totally unprepared, and a job at which Maria’s predecessors have failed. After a rough start, Maria becomes a great success, due to her common sense, kind heart, wisdom, and readiness to defy convention. In the process, Maria also stands up to foreign totalitarian aggressors (winning the support of even her staunch critic Berthe), fortifies the nationalist sentiments of her country against those aggressors, and leads the people in her care to safety and freedom.
Ergo, the question “How do you solve a problem like Sarah?’ provides its own answer, at least to people who know the film from which the song comes: Make her the President of the United States.
Ergo, motherfucker! He then disavows actually wanting Palin to become President; he's just saying Newsweek hates her but is accidentally making her look really good.
This from one of the supposedly intellectual rightwing blogs.
Hilarity results in the comments including, among other things, that Kopel totally misunderstands the song.
“Absolutely not,” Taitz said Thursday afternoon when asked whether she would pay. “I have filed an appeal. It was a complete abuse of power.”
The original order says "if Taitz doesn’t pay by the deadline, the U.S. Attorney 'will be authorized to commence collection proceedings.' Taitz has appealed the sanction."
Pass the popcorn.
Typical of the hateful bigots:
The Catholic Archdiocese of Washington said Wednesday that it will be unable to continue the social service programs it runs for the District if the city doesn't change a proposed same-sex marriage law, a threat that could affect tens of thousands of people the church helps with adoption, homelessness and health care.
Fortunately, D.C. City Council doesn't want to negotiate with terrorists:
[City council member David A.] Catania, who said he has been the biggest supporter of Catholic Charities on the council, said he is baffled by the church's stance. From 2006 through 2008, Catania said, Catholic Charities received about $8.2 million in city contracts, as well as several hundred thousand dollars' worth this year through his committee.
"If they find living under our laws so oppressive that they can no longer take city resources, the city will have to find an alternative partner to step in to fill the shoes," Catania said. He also said Catholic Charities was involved in only six of the 102 city-sponsored adoptions last year.
So, over $2 million per year for the past three years. If the international pedophile ring that calls itself a religion bails on D.C., I am sure other service providers would love to have that money.
Blake Hall, a leading figure in Idaho and national politics for 25 years, was fired Monday as a deputy prosecuting attorney in eastern Idaho and has resigned from the Republican National Committee. ...
Idaho Falls police reported that witnesses said Hall disposed of used condoms on the lawn of the woman's house. Nineteen condoms were turned over to police, collected on 10 different dates, according to a police report. Both Hall and his lawyer acknowledged the condoms belonged to him, according to a police report.
Wow. How crazy do you have to be?
Also, between March and August, Hall repeatedly followed the woman to restaurants, the movies and her home, and he ignored her repeated requests that he leave her alone, according to police and court records.
The victim testified Friday that Hall once followed her to a Walmart and took her car keys and would not return them until she agreed to "hear him out" concerning her marriage, the Idaho Falls Post Register reported.
"I was so tired of being victimized," the woman said. "It is unimaginable that a 56-year-old would be so deviant."
Just like the attorney for that guy in Kentucky blaming the victim for her own death, some people in Idaho have some wacky ideas, too:
Hall, 56, will keep his $31,000-a-year job as the civil attorney in nearby Fremont County, according to Prosecutor Joette Lookabaugh, a Republican who hired Hall in January.
Lookabaugh said she told Hall he would keep his job "unless or until his ability to do an outstanding job for Fremont County citizens is compromised."
In a news release, Lookabaugh suggested Hall was singled out because of his notoriety.
"I understand that political figures are held to a higher standard," she said. "What is disturbing is the fact that often people who have devoted their lives to public service are not given the same benefits, or are treated more harshly, than the public at large. There seems to be a certain amount of political glee in striking down the well-known for any real or perceived foible."
Hall admits throwing used condoms on a woman's lawn. Does Prosecutor Lookabaugh really believe someone who does that should retain a position of trust?
Hall continues to accumulate pension benefits from Fremont County. Hall's law firm gets about $600,000 worth of business from the state, but that is being looked at.
I have no idea who won or lost in this battle. Whatever.
Regrets, now you have more than a few:
Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, the 39-year-old man accused of Thursday’s mass shooting at Fort Hood, Tex., started having second thoughts about his military career a few years ago after other soldiers harassed him for being a Muslim, he told relatives in Virginia.
He had also more recently expressed deep concerns about being sent to Iraq or Afghanistan. Having counseled scores of returning soldiers with post-traumatic stress disorder, first at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington and more recently at Fort Hood, he knew all too well the terrifying realities of war, said a cousin, Nader Hasan.
“He was mortified by the idea of having to deploy,” Mr. Hasan said. “He had people telling him on a daily basis the horrors they saw over there.”
I doubt this is intentional wordplay, but the original meaning of the root of "mortify" is "put to death." I believe both that Hasan was harassed and that he was deeply affected by the soldiers he had to treat. I understand not wanting to deploy, although "tough shit, they paid for your medical degree" is also an acceptable answer. But assuming you don't want to go to war, how do you get from there to shooting scores of people? Probably he was just flipped out and not thinking straight. But I can't rule out the possibility that he connected the dots between being harassed for being Muslim and what he was afraid of in Iraq and decided he needed to kill some soldiers, intending to go out guns blazing. In effect, he decided to take up arms against his country, albeit in a half-assed way.
For these reasons, I think his commanding officer's remark that Hasan's "death is not imminent" is both a statement of fact and a prediction of mortification to come. The U.S. military has not had an execution for some time, but has several men on death row, including Sgt. Akbar - who also claimed harassment and then fragged his officers while in Kuwait. I think Maj. Hasan is destined to join them.
Maine voters decisively rejected same-sex marriage yesterday, 53% to 47%. Last November, when California voters overturned gay marriage there, the exit polls indicated that out of the Obama constituencies, overwhelming opposition from African-American (and, to a lesser extent, Hispanic) voters helped tip the balance. This was controversial, to put it mildly. Well, Maine is 97% white, and Obama won it in a landslide, 58%-42%.
Something else I hadn't realized: the Christie win in New Jersey means the gay marriage bill expected to have come out of the legislature soon is now dead.
Fear wins again.
I perked up when I saw this headline over at the Heritage Foundation's blog:
Pelosi Plan Would Give Health Czar Super Powers
I'm thinking, "Telepathy, that's what that official needs! No, not telepathy -- a superhuman capacity to put up with bullshit." Because it turns out there are no mutant powers, it's just Heritage being total whackjobs again. Anyone who has even read the smallest part about what they're referring to will understand they're nuts. Or lying. Or both.
Caught in a cemetery with a stripper, sex toys and Viagra:
[Police officer Mike Wines] stopped [state Assistant Attorney General Roland] Corning Monday after witnessing his car pull into a secluded spot in Elmwood Cemetery in downtown Columbia.
Corning was in the car with an 18-year-old employee of Platinum Plus Gentlemen’s Club, Wines reported. After receiving conflicting stories from Corning and the woman, Wines searched Corning’s car and found some sex toys and sex enhancement drug.
No laws were broken, so that's a plus. Corning resigned from the Attorney General's office anyway.
I love it when John Cole is wound up:
Although I hear if you wish really hard and scream “Just words” at Obama, Lieberman might change his mind. That is how this shit works- I read it on the internet!
In early September, [Stewart David] Nozette was contacted by phone by an individual purporting to be an Israeli intelligence officer, but who really was an FBI undercover agent, the document says.
They met in downtown Washington in front of a hotel, and over lunch, Nozette "demonstrated his willingness to work for Israeli intelligence," it says.
The undercover agent engaged in a series of meetings with Nozette, and eventually Nozette allegedly provided "secret" information in a "dead drop" post office box. Some of the information, the affidavit says, was classified as secret.
Selling secrets is just plain dumb. I mean, even if it had been the Israelis he was dealing with, turning over classified information puts you at their mercy. They can make you deliver more and more material, and if you refuse they'll just burn you to the Americans.
So what was Nozette's problem?
The FBI document, signed by Special Agent Leslie G. Martell, says Nozette in January 2009 told a colleague "that if the United States government tried to put him in jail" on an unrelated matter, Nozette would move to Israel or another unidentified foreign country and "tell them everything" he knows.
What the hell is that about? Taxes? Drugs? Child porn? I have no idea. Whatever it was, telling someone with a clearance you're thinking of betraying your country if you get prosecuted for it is just stupid squared.
What did Nozette know?
Nozette had a "top secret" clearance, and served at the White House on the National Space Council for President George H.W. Bush, the affidavit says. Later, from early 2000 to early 2006, he did research and development for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the Naval Research Laboratory, and NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, it says.
The Israelis are not accused of doing anything wrong here. However:
The document says Nozette also acted as a technical consultant from 1998 until early 2008 "for an aerospace company that was wholly owned by the government of the state of Israel." The company consulted with Nozette monthly, getting answers to questions, and he received regular payments of $225,000, Martell's affidavit says.
Well, if he was an independent contractor receiving "regular payments" of almost a quarter million dollars, I would guess the tax angle sounds likelier.
How stupid do you have to be to believe this shit?
A drug dealer marks his spot by tying the shoe strings of sneakers together and hanging them over a line, he said: Look for those shoes. Near them is an alleged drug house his group is targeting.
Following Phillips’ directions, a reporter and photographer drive up 25th Avenue with a video camera aimed out the passenger’s side window.
Sure enough, shoes hang there on a line. Beyond them, men stand in a front yard. Noticing the camera, one yells, “What the f--k is goin’ on!”
That’s the kind of confrontation drug fighters like Phillips face regularly, in their marches, night watches and camp-outs, as they try to drive the dealers out.
People throw shoes over power lines for all sorts of stupid reasons. Who knows, maybe some drug dealers have heard the urban legend and did it. But most dealers don't hang up signs - their customers know where to find them.
But yeah, in any tough city neighborhood aiming a video camera out a car window will at least earn you "What the fuck is goin' on!" It could also get you killed, which would be your own foolish fault for brandishing something that could be mistaken for a gun out a window.
When anti-abortion activist James Pouillon was shot and killed in Michigan last month, the mainstream media response was significantly more muted [than when Dr. Tiller was assassinated]. While there could be different explanations or excuses for the insignificant coverage … .
To which I responded in comments:
Oh, I wish there had been more coverage of Mr. Pouillon and why he was outside that specific school:
It will be impossible for some to believe, but my dad really didn’t care about aborton.
He did this to stalk, harass, terrorize, scream at, threaten, frighten, and verbally abuse women. He had a pathologic hatred of women: his mom, my mom, everyone.
After my mom finally left him and he lost his favorite punching bag the violence and abuse that was always contained within our 4 walls was unleased on the people of Owosso. …
He was at the high shool because my niece was there, and female family members were always his favorite targets.
Of course, the fact that the murderer also killed a gravel company owner and was after a real estate broker when he was caught, neither of whom had anything to do with abortion, might be a fairly decent “excuse” for not giving the story more play.
Which she deleted. Because that's just how Get Religion rolls.
Carney-Nunes looked at the time stamp -- 6:47 a.m. -- and closed the file without replying. She knew Malkin had driven criticism of President Obama's back-to-school speech, streamed nationwide, as an attempt to indoctrinate students. Now Malkin was asking about a YouTube video of New Jersey public school children singing and enthusiastically chanting about Obama from a Black History Month presentation.
By nightfall, Carney-Nunes's name was playing on Fox News and voice mails on her home phone and cellphone were clogged with the furious voices of strangers. The e-mails kept pouring in, by the hundreds, crammed with words spam filters try to catch: She was a "nappy-headed" traitor; she would lose her job and go to jail; she was Leni Riefenstahl, the filmmaker who glorified Hitler. ...
Carney-Nunes, who writes children's books and was a year behind Obama at Harvard Law School, watched as strangers posted her personal information on the Internet. She read, "You're a dirtbag commie propagandist trying to infect children with your failed Marxist ideology." And "your Obama chant is right out of Africa." And "get ready for a massive attack!!!" And "my friend GLENN BECK will also shove this in your face until justice is served." She made copies (which she shared with The Washington Post) and then deleted the messages, hoping the tornado would set her back down.
"I was fearful," she said. "I was looking over my shoulder." The disrespect for the office of the presidency disturbed her. "I won a contest in college and President Reagan gave me an award, and that signed letter is still hanging in its frame in the foyer of my mother's home. We are very proud of that letter, even though my mother didn't vote for him." ...
An e-mail to Malkin Saturday seeking comment was not answered.
Carney-Nunes spends a lot of her free time teaching children how to bridge divides, but she has no idea how to build a dialogue with those who attacked her.
"How can I talk to those people?" she said. "These are people who persist in believing that Barack Obama is a Muslim, that he isn't a citizen of this country. You tell me: Where is the beginning of that conversation?"
That's the meat of the story, the rest is false-equivalence and it's-always-been-bad history, which makes Father Coughlin sound like just some scamp nipping at FDR's heels. How colorful!
The nation's political discourse seems sour, angry, even dangerous; "uglier than it's ever been" is a phrase often volunteered -- as if President George W. Bush had never been depicted as Hitler, declared a dunce and heckled by Code Pink during his second inaugural address.
I swear, that MoveOn ad contest entry is getting to be for political vitriol what that woman who was burned by McDonald's coffee is for tort law. Tell me, though, which Congressional Democrats likened Bush to Hitler? Which major cable news network coordinated Code Pink's protests? I'm having trouble remembering, because it didn't happen. But yeah, Bush was a dunce.
Over at rightwing godshop Get Religion, frontpager E.E. Evans says:
To which I replied:
It’s no secret that President Barack Obama has been viewed in quasi-Messianic terms by some on the left….
[T]he Messianic language comes from the left ….
“It’s no secret” is one of those weasel phrases people use when they don’t have any evidence to cite.
She deleted the comment, but also responded to it! Which, I suppose, is novel. By way of providing evidence, she says:
Davis/Mithras, here’s a sampling of perspectives —
By the way “Mithras” if you want to make a point, try making it politely. Otherwise, the next time, your comment will surely as the sun comes out tomorrow be deleted again.
Ooooh, I'm in troubbbbllllle. E.E. Evans, professional religious person, thinks I am not polite. Oh well. But what I said was:
Of your three links: It’s interesting that 2 of them are primarily about the comments of African-Americans (the third, Rolling Stone, has to be taken as a tongue-in-cheek Star Wars reference), but you identify these people as the left generally. (Also, citing Politico is a bit tendentious, don’t you think?) I believe there is a bit of a racial/religion ghost in your characterization.
Meaning, you're a fucking liar. Shockingly, she deleted that comment, too.
You know, I give the biblethumpers at GR credit for at least having comments, unlike most rightwing bloggers, but it's hard for them to maintain their mental rigidity and still let other people talk. So they make copious use of the spike. (That's journalism lingo, kids. Isn't the internet wonderful?) I don't do that, myself. I mean, if you allow opposing comments, then you have to read them but no one else probably will. But when you delete comments, then someone like me goes back to their own blog and calls you a fucking liar for everyone to see.
Some guy named Chiscolm sued Bank of America for $1.784 septillion dollars. That's $1,784,000,000,000,000,000,000,000. Or $1.784 trillion trillion. Any way you say it, he won't get it:
The gross domestic product of the entire world in 2008 was only $60 trillion, so even if Chiscolm won it might be a little hard to collect.
Also, or rather to reiterate, he's not going to win because he's nuts:
In a ruling issued Thursday, U.S. District Judge Denny Chin called Chiscolm's claim "incomprehensible," having something to do with incomplete routing numbers and inconsistent information given to him over the phone by a "Spanish womn [sic]." Chiscolm now has a month to come up with a better explanation of his claims, so we can all look forward to that.
Damn Spanish womn. Get you every time.
This is nice:
[Middle District of Georgia] U.S. District Court Judge Clay Land today tossed out a complaint by an Army captain fighting deployment to Iraq by questioning the legitimacy of President Barack Obama.
Land also put attorney Orly Taitz, who represents Capt. Connie Rhodes and is a leader in the national “birther” movement, on notice by stating that she could face sanctions if she ever files a similar “frivolous” lawsuit in his court.
“(Rhodes) has presented no credible evidence and has made no reliable factual allegations to support her unsubstantiated, conclusory allegations and conjecture that President Obama is ineligible to serve as president of the United States,” Land states in his order. “Instead, she uses her complaint as a platform for spouting political rhetoric, such as her claims that the president is ‘an illegal usurper, an unlawful pretender, [and] an unqualified imposter.’”
Orly Taitz, JD, DDS, and "frivolous" in the same sentence. I am glad some people are sane.
Update: The judge's order (pdf) will be included in an upper-level law seminar I will teach next year called Things You Don't Want a Judge to Say About You or Your Client:
The present action is the second such action filed in this Court in which counsel pursues her “birther claim.” Her modus operandi is to use military officers as parties and have them allege that they should not be required to follow deployment orders because President Obama is not constitutionally qualified to be President. Although counsel has managed to fuel this “birther movement” with her litigation and press conferences, she does not appear to have prevailed on a single claim. In fact, Plaintiff previously filed the present action in the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas. That Court summarily dismissed her complaint upon finding that Plaintiff “has no substantial likelihood of success on the merits.” [Cite omitted.] Counsel then re-filed the same action in this Court.
Subtle practice point here: As an attorney, you know you're in trouble when the judge writes that you have a modus operandi. Also, it's bad form to shop your case around to every District Court you think might give you a sympathetic hearing just because it's located in a red state.
Captain Rhodes entered the Army in March of 2005 and presently serves as a medical doctor. The American taxpayers paid for her third and fourth years of medical school and financially supported her during her subsequent medical internship and residency program. In exchange for this valuable free medical education, Captain Rhodes agreed to serve two years in active service in the Army. She began that term of active service in July of 2008 and had no concerns about fulfilling her military obligation until she received orders notifying her that she would be deployed to Iraq in September of 2009.
Captain Rhodes does not seek a discharge from the Army; nor does she wish to be relieved entirely from her two year active service obligation. She has not previously made any official complaints regarding any orders or assignments that she has received, including orders that have been issued since President Obama became Commander in Chief. But she does not want to go to Iraq (or to any other destination where she may be in harm’s way, for that matter). Her “conscientious objections” to serving under the current Commander in Chief apparently can be accommodated as long as she is permitted to remain on American soil.
Captain, you've just been called a coward by a United States District Judge. Now how do you feel?
Plaintiff’s challenge to her deployment order is frivolous. She has presented no credible evidence and has made no reliable factual allegations to support her unsubstantiated, conclusory allegations and conjecture that President Obama is ineligible to serve as President of the United States. Instead, she uses her Complaint as a platform for spouting political rhetoric, such as her claims that the President is “an illegal usurper, an unlawful pretender, [and] an unqualified imposter.” ... She continues with bare, conclusory allegations that the President is “an alien, possibly even an unnaturalized or even an unadmitted illegal alien . . . without so much as lawful residency in the United States.” ... Then, implying that the President is either a wandering nomad or a prolific identity fraud crook, she alleges that the President “might have used as many as 149 addresses and 39 social security numbers prior to assuming the office of President.” ... (emphasis added).) Acknowledging the existence of a document that shows the President was born in Hawaii, Plaintiff alleges that the document “cannot be verified as genuine, and should be presumed fraudulent.” (... (emphasis added).) In further support of her claim, Plaintiff relies upon “the general opinion in the rest of the world” that “Barack Hussein Obama has, in essence, slipped through the guardrails to become President.” ... Moreover, as though the “general opinion in the rest of the world” were not enough, Plaintiff alleges in her Complaint that according to an “AOL poll 85% of Americans believe that Obama was not vetted, needs to be vetted and his vital records need to be produced.” ...
Cites omitted, but I'll note that some of them refer to page 148 of the complaint. That's not a brief, that's a book. I would sanction Taitz on that basis alone, which is one of many reasons I am not a judge.
Finally, in a remarkable shifting of the traditional legal burden of proof, Plaintiff unashamedly alleges that Defendant has the burden to prove his “natural born” status. ... Thus, Plaintiff’s counsel, who champions herself as a defender of liberty and freedom, seeks to use the power of the judiciary to compel a citizen, albeit the President of the United States, to “prove his innocence” to “charges” that are based upon conjecture and speculation. Any middle school civics student would readily recognize the irony of abandoning fundamental principles upon which our Country was founded in order to purportedly “protect and preserve” those very principles.
In three sentences, Judge Land proves why Article III rocks. Do you think the rightwingers are going to go after him? Guess who appointed him: George W. (This is the first time that I can recall ever wanting to post a smiley emoticon on this blog.)
On to Footnote 5:
One piece of “evidence” Plaintiff’s counsel relies upon deserves further discussion. Counsel has produced a document that she claims shows the President was born in Kenya, yet she has not authenticated that document. She has produced an affidavit from someone who allegedly obtained the document from a hospital in Mombasa, Kenya by paying “a cash ‘consideration’ to a Kenyan military officer on duty to look the other way, while [he] obtained the copy” of the document. ... Counsel has not, however, produced an original certificate of authentication from the government agency that supposedly has official custody of the document. Therefore, the Court finds that the alleged document is unreliable due to counsel’s failure to properly authenticate the document.
Taitz failed to produce Obama's official Kenyan birth certificate! I can hear 60,000 wingnuts, or a million, give or take, sputtering in confusion.
One more thing: The judge went out of his way to not just dismiss the complaint, but to demonstrate that the plaintiff's allegations didn't survive any of the different legal tests that it would have to satisfy if she hoped to prevail. He didn't need to do that, but I suppose he didn't want to repeat the District Court in Texas' mistake of issuing just a summary order. After it failed one standard, he could have dismissed it on that basis alone, but he chose to show that the complaint lacked any merit, which provides the justification for the best part of the order:
Plaintiff’s counsel is hereby notified that the filing of any future actions in this Court, which are similarly frivolous, shall subject counsel to sanctions. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 11(c).
Rule 11 provides, among other things:
A sanction imposed under this rule must be limited to what suffices to deter repetition of the conduct or comparable conduct by others similarly situated. The sanction may include nonmonetary directives; an order to pay a penalty into court; or, if imposed on motion and warranted for effective deterrence, an order directing payment to the movant of part or all of the reasonable attorney's fees and other expenses directly resulting from the violation.
One thing I want to know is: Is Taitz admitted to practice in the Middle District of Georgia, or did she waive in pro hac vice? If the latter, then there is also some local counsel who vouched for her who is also going to suffer for inflicting this nonsense on the court. Good.