Man Shopping With Rifle, Glock at Utah JC Penney "Pretty Much an Idiot"

If you have to bring big, dangerous guns to a store to prove that “they are not dangerous in the hands of law abiding citizens,” then that pretty much proves that they are dangerous… in anyone’s hands.

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McCain Campaign is Stacking Townhalls

Somebody's nose must be growing... and it's Pinocchio Sidney McWhichWayIsUp:

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The End of the Hummer Era?

CNN: The average price for gasoline is $3.98 a gallon.

The New York Times is reporting that GM is closing four plants:

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Is Obama Ahead in Pennsylvania?

An outlier or ….?
Barack Obama 45
Hillary Clinton 43
Barack Obama has taken the lead in Pennsylvania, a remarkable turnaround after trailing Hillary Clinton by 26 points in a PPP poll in the state just two and a half weeks ago.
Obama’s steep rise could be a reflection of a growing sense among Democratic voters that a continued divisive nomination process will hurt the party’s chances of defeating John McCain this fall. An Obama upset in Pennsylvania would be virtually certain to force Clinton out of the race.
Obama has his customary large advantage with black voters (75-17) and is keeping it relatively competitive with white voters (49-38)
He leads across all age groups except senior citizens and balances Clinton’s 10 point lead with women with his own 15 point lead with men.

Pdf version here, with details.

Home page of PPP here.

H/t: Commenter David G.

80-Year-Old Church Deacon Arrested for Refusing to Remove His Anti-War T-Shirt

He's 80, but he was wearing the wrong tee shirt. One must never wear the wrong tee shirt. That's just unacceptable. Especially if one is at the mall:

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Don Siegelman to Be Released from Prison

Gather ’round, kiddies! It’s story time! Paddy, sit still! Bucky, stop pulling Kirsten’s hair! Clancy, L.A.Dave, put your wallets away, Eve is sneaking up behind you! Addington, do I have to take that Hillary bumper sticker away from you? You know how it annoys Fernando. Mainsailset, sit between them please. Settle down, everyone. Okay? Okay. Where was I? Oh yes… Once upon a time, there were …
...a series of cases in which it is alleged that the Justice Department brought charges to advance the political agenda of the Republican Party, and not for proper law enforcement purposes. The case surrounding Alabama Governor Don Siegelman is the centerpiece, and is still reckoned by most observers as the most overpowering case for prosecutorial abuse so far.

And guess what, kids! Karl Rove was involved! Yayyyy!

Now, boys and girls, there was a very, very important question that has never been answered:
Was the convicted charge a crime?

And what a question it was! Especially because there were partisan Republican political histories of both the prosecutors and the judge in the case! Can you say par-ti-san? I knew that you could. This is such a long story, I’ll let one of you give a Show and Tell Powerpoint about it next week, or just read this to us.

Gosharootie, what next? This!
Nearly two months after being ordered by an appellate court to explain his reasoning, a federal judge wrote Wednesday that he won’t allow former Gov. Don Siegelman out of prison while appealing his conviction because he doesn’t believe the conviction will be overturned.

Well guess what, children!
Former Gov. Don Siegelman will be released from prison, after the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals granted him an appeal bond, the lead prosecutor in the case said.

Mukasey Lets Bolten and Miers Off the Hook

We expected nothing less from the guy who can't figure out if waterboarding is torture or just a minor annoyance... unless it's done to him:

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Canadian Embassy Says Obama/NAFTA Rumours are False

Of course it is. When will we ever learn? Here's the backstory. Here's the correction:

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Hillary Behaves Like a Sore Loser for the Second Time in a Row

I noticed that the other day, but now that it's twice in a row, it's worth a post:

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Why the Kennedy Endorsement Matters

This election holds special meaning for so many:

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Disgraced Warmonger Wolfowitz to Chair US Panel on Arms Control

Paul "Spit On My Comb" Wolfowitz has a brand new job!
Paul Wolfowitz, an architect of the Iraq war who was forced to resign from the World Bank because of an ethics scandal, will chair a U.S. advisory panel on arms control, the State Department said on Thursday.
How wise, hiring WolfaHalfWitz for a position that he will no doubt use to bungle and/or further endanger the U.S. Well, at least he'll be able to afford a new comb.
The former deputy secretary of defense and advocate of the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq will head the State Department's International Security Advisory Board, which gives the department independent advice on arms control, disarmament, international security and other matters.
Wolfowitz was forced to resign as president of the World Bank last year after a bank panel found he broke several of its rules by involving himself in the promotion of his companion Shaha Riza, a Middle East expert at the bank.

Nonpartisan Study Confirms Bush Admin Told 935 Lies About Iraq in March to War

Between the L.A. Times and the always-alert OhDave linking me to this, I've got some interesting information for you about BushCo and its web of lies:

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Kucinich Kept Off Texas Ballot

How can this be called a democracy when someone running for president isn't even on the ballot?

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Iraqis Forced to Sell Their Children

How bad does it have to get? This story is making the rounds today:

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CIA to Cooperate with Congress on Torture Tapes

A step in the right direction:
The Central Intelligence Agency has agreed to make documents related to the destruction of interrogation videotapes available to the House Intelligence Committee and to allow the agency's top lawyer, John A. Rizzo, to testify about the matter, Congressional and intelligence officials said Wednesday.
But it remained unclear whether Jose A. Rodriguez, who as chief of the agency's clandestine service ordered the tapes destroyed in 2005, would testify. Officials said Mr. Rodriguez's appearance before the committee might involve complex negotiations over legal immunity at a time when the Justice Department and the intelligence agency were reviewing whether the destruction of the tapes broke any laws.
Did I hear the "I" word again? "Immunity"?
This week, the administration has sought a compromise. Justice officials said they still had misgivings about the House committee's plans, but they did not advise the C.I.A. to disregard the committee's requests.

MSNBC Debuts New Series Slamming Justice Dept Under Bush

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

Speaking of MSNBC, check this out:
MSNBC's Live with Dan Abrams (which is soon getting a name change) will premiere a new series tonight called "Bush League Justice." Abrams writes on the MSNBC blog that the idea for the series "stems from my increasing frustration and outrage over how the Bush Administration has politicized the usually apolitical Justice Department."
"Bush League Justice" marks the latest in a push by MSNBC to take the offensive against the Bush administration, with Keith Olbermann and Chris Matthews, and the once possible hiring of Rosie O'Donnell. Jacques Steinberg of The New York Times wrote last month about MSNBC's "three-hour block of nighttime which the White House takes a regular beating."
"Bush League Justice" will air Monday-Thursday at 9pmET.
That "White House takes a regular beating" comment, not so much. I wouldn't put Tweety and Dan Abrams in that category.

But I do appreciate any attempt by Abrams to draw attention to the beating Democracy has taken at the hands of this horrendous administration.

Nobody Can Win the 2008 GOP Presidential Nomination

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

That's right, nobody. There will be no Republican winner. Okay, there will be somehow, but check this out:

* First, Huckabee:
o So the latest polls have Mike Huckabee up an implausible nineteen points in Iowa and four points nationally. But he can't win, right? I mean, he's vulnerable on practically every non-social issue, he has a variety of skeletons in his closet, his policy team seems more or less nonexistent, he still doesn't have any money, and he has most of the GOP establishment united against him. He doesn't have a prayer - or maybe that's all he has.
He goes on to say:
Except, of course, that none of his rivals can win either. If you look at the field, every candidate seems to have near-disqualifying weaknesses (a point Larison has been making for months, I believe), which helps explain why nobody seems capable of getting above 30-35 percent in any national or state-level poll.
* Next, McCain:
o McCain is still poison to a large chunk of the base and probably doesn't have enough money to capitalize even if he wins New Hampshire - and if he loses there, he's cooked.
* And Mitt?
o Mitt Romney is running on a record that would have made him a moderate Democrat in any state except hyper-liberal Massachussetts. [And there are those Mormon and Mitt-flop issues]
* How's about that Rudy?
o Rudy Giuliani is running on a record that would have made him a moderate Democrat in any place except hyper-liberal New York City. [And this stuff]
* Mustn't forget the would-be savior, Fredhorn Leghorn:
o Fred Thompson is more ideologically appropriate, but he's lived down to his lackluster record as a politician by running a remarkably lousy and (perhaps unremarkably) lazy campaign.

Texas GOP Launches New Vote Suppression Scheme

This post, written by GottaLaff, orignally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

A Republican voter fraud initiative in Texas is actually a partisan scheme to retain power. How? By suppressing voter turnout of those who don't fall in line with Republicans.

Ya think Tom DeLay, that darling of the Republican fraud sector has his hot-tub-shriveled fingerprints all over this one?
At the same time, former Tom DeLay aide and current Tom Craddick ally, John Colyandro, who remains under felony indictment for money laundering and other charges, has formed a "think tank" that is already using faulty data and illogical statistics to justify vote suppression tactics.
But voter fraud does not exist. Tom's bff Texas House Speaker Tom Craddick says so. What? That's not true? I'm shocked.
These most recent Texas Republican efforts to suppress voter turnout are consistent with Texas AG Greg Abbott's taxpayer funded phony voter fraud enforcement unit that the Lone Star Project has exposed and reported on extensively here.

US Claims It Has the Right to Kidnap British Citizens

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

Sorry about the light posting today. I was struggling with my new video program. But that's better than struggling with a kidnapper.
AMERICA has told Britain that it can "kidnap" British citizens if they are wanted for crimes in the United States.
A senior lawyer for the American government has told the Court of Appeal in London that kidnapping foreign citizens is permissible under American law because the US Supreme Court has sanctioned it.
Well, at least they're honest about their crimes. Wait, what?

This reminds me of something though. A lit-tle something ca-a-alled....extraordinary rendition.
The admission will alarm the British business community after the case of the so-called NatWest Three, bankers who were extradited to America on fraud charges. More than a dozen other British executives, including senior managers at British Airways and BAE Systems, are under investigation by the US authorities and could face criminal charges in America.
Until now it was commonly assumed that US law permitted kidnapping only in the "extraordinary rendition" of terrorist suspects.
Why should there be boundaries? This is America, after all! Land of the free! As long as you're not the kidnapee, that is.
The American government has for the first time made it clear in a British court that the law applies to anyone, British or otherwise, suspected of a crime by Washington.
Who needs habeas corpus anyway?

Reporter Gets Circumcised to Fight AIDS

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films

You might say he got right to the point:
A southern African radio correspondent has been receiving a flood of text messages and cell phone calls -- some from offended listeners and readers.
All because Kennedy Gondwe chose to get circumcised to protect himself from AIDS, and took the British Broadcasting Corp.'s radio and Web audience through the procedure with him Friday.
My legs have involuntarily crossed as I type this.
[C]ircumcision can significantly reduce men's chances of contracting the virus that causes AIDS. U.N. health agencies followed up with an endorsement, but stressed that the procedure offers only partial protection and that abstinence, condom use, having few partners and delaying the first sexual experience are all among the steps that need to be encouraged.

Was Trent Lott Involved With a Gay Male Escort?

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

I've always been called fair-minded, so I'll post the update first:
It looks like a Washington DC-based blog called BigHeadDC is making claim that there was (or, is) a working relationship between myself and Senator Trent Lott. There are falsely pieced-together quotes that serve no purpose other than to sensationalize a completely fabricated scoop.
I will continue to offer a great sense of confidentiality to the people I see. I have not, nor have I ever seen or had contact with Senator Trent Lott. It's as simple as that. It never happened.
Benjamin Nicholas
What's up with that, Benjamin?

Now here's the allegation, via Daily Kos' lost (the BigHeadDC site is down due to traffic):
According to the post:
Once upon a time, there was a twentysomething boy-next-door type with reddish blond hair and a brilliantly white smile. Not one to shy away from attention, he wrote a blog called "Fifteen Minutes," and also became a freelance writer for various publications, including The Stranger in Seattle. He'd often focus on his non-traditional lifestyle as a gay male escort -- a topic that often fascinated his readers, which, in turn, helped him to garner a substantial amount of powerful business acquaintances through the years.
The boy happens to be real, and his "stage name" is Benjamin Nicholas. One of the politicos Big Head DC has learned he's alleged to have been involved with is the married Sen. Trent Lott, 66, who unexpectedly announced his retirement on Monday. Lott is well-known to have been against a plethora of gay rights issues throughout his terms in Congress. He was also good friends with Sen. Larry Craig throughout his time in Congress.
Nicholas told Big Head DC today via e-mail that he didn't want to go on the record to talk about his dealings with Lott, because, said Nicholas, "Trent is going through his fair share of scrutiny right now and I don't want to add to it." However, e-mail and other records confirm that the two have met on at least two occasions.
"All I can say at this point is no comment," Nicholas told us. "It's the professional thing for me to do."
It's speculated that Larry Flynt is working on the story. But Flynt will not comment on it.

Romney Launches Campaign Against Honesty

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films

He's being honest. Swift boat him.
Earlier this week in New Hampshire Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama spoke candidly about his past experimentation with drugs and alcohol in high school, and on Saturday--after a question on medicinal marijuana--Obama was prodded a bit further and asked whether or not he had ever inhaled.
"I did," the senator from Illinois said to light applause. "It's not something I'm proud of. It was a mistake as a young man."
The "mistake", according to Mitt Romney, includes Obama's public frankness. It could have--dun dun dunnn -- repercussions.
The question was a reference to a line made famous by former President Bill Clinton who, while admitting to trying marijuana, said he did not inhale.
"I never understood that line," Obama continued. "The point was to inhale. That was the point."

It certainly is was. Did I say "is"? Well, that depends on what the definition of "is" is. Don't ask, don't tell.

Here come the repercussions:
On the campaign trail on Saturday, GOP White House hopeful Mitt Romney said Obama's earlier comments set a bad example for young people.
Is Mitt against honesty? That's unAmerican! Support the troops! 9/11! Makin' progr-- oops. Sorry. I nearly got sucked into the Republican Black Hole of pseudo-patriotism.
On the issue of medicinal marijuana, Obama said that if the "best way to relieve pain and suffering is through medicinal marijuana," then it's something he's open to.

The Smoking Gun in the Form of Scott McClellan

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

My patented, award-winning quick notes on today's Thom Hartmann Show. As always, there are many accurate quotes among the paraphrased ones.

The mainstream media is burying the Scott McClellan story today. The question is: How will the media and Congress handle this story? Will McClellan Be John Dean to Bush's Richard Nixon? They were both confidants of the president, and both came out with bombshells.

We still live in a nation where we can discuss these things.

Here are the rationales for impeachment, the things Bush has done: (that and more on the flip)

--Wireless searches of Americans and lying about it. The 4th Amendment is unambiguous. Everyone shall be secure against unreasonable search and seizure. Bush tried to lie his way out of this one: "...Constitutional guarantees are in place... We value the Constitution"... Bush is lying through his teeth.

And when he's caught, he says, "There's a process that goes through the Department of Justice...about leaks...My personal opinion is, it's a shameful act for someone to disclose thes very important program in a time of war. It's helping the enemy..." Be afraid! We'll do away with the Constitution, just like Musharraf did.

He's wiretapping the same way Nixon did. What would Gingrich have done if Clinton did what Bush is doing?

--Invading Iraq illegally. And the resolution that the Senate passed that required Bush to write letter in 60 days? -- and he did -- It's a lie.


--Unlawful combatant status

--Extraordinary rendition

--Gitmo, the treatment of detainees

--Outing a CIA agent

--The yellowcake forgery

--The grand jury leaks

--Commuting Libby's sentence, if it was done to prevent Libby from implicating Bush in criminal acts.

This is of Nixonian proportions...where is the media?

The President of the United States is revealed by his own press secretary as one of the liars around an act that Bush's own father referred to as a traitorous act. Bush is not the Decider, the Constitution is.

--The Downing Street Minutes says that Bush was fully intending to go to war with iraq, no matter who disagreed with him or what the evidence was. Another bald faced lie.

--The inspectors were in Iraq, Hans Blix was saying we're not finding anything at all. Blix said he had no evidence of WMD. Bush made the inspectors leave so he could drop bombs, and he lied about that. He lied about Saddam kicking out the inspectors.

-- He lied about finding the biological labs.

--Signing statements: Another impeachable offense.

At what point do the lies affect the media? Some blogs, Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann devoted time to it, but nobody in the corporate media.

When Scott McClellan lied, there were several members of the media who knew he was lying (those subpoenaed: Tim Russert, Matt Cooper, Judith Miller), and pedaled the lies. They were used to pedal the lies and they went with it. So, treason was committed by 4th estate and the government. The media is failing us.

Scott McClellan is promoting his book 6 months in advance, which would kill it. An author usually drops leaks a month before, which starts the news cycle. This is Scott trying to clear his name, pointing out the lies.

The LA Times placed the story on page 20, on the bottom right hand corner. Here's the story that took up most of the page: Seven remaining Munchkins were honored with a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame.

All infotainment all the time. Where are the Bob Woodwards of our day?

Giuliani Pays a NYC Fireman to Like Him

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

The only way Rudy can get support from firefighters, it seems, is to hire them, per the Huffington Post's Sam Stein:
But at least one member of the FDNY continues to offer his support to the former mayor -- and may be getting paid for it.
John R. Orlando, who serves with Engine 216 in Brooklyn, New York, has been cited prominently as a Giuliani supporter. Last June, in a New York Times article detailing the mixed reviews Giuliani has among the city's 11,000-membered firefighting force, Orlando said he regularly saw Giuliani at fires despite suggestions otherwise.
Here's what Rudy's paid bff says about him:
[T]he "bottom line is, I think he's been more of a friend to firefighters than I've seen in the news. I don't think all the criticism is warranted."
The bottom line is, that just cost Rudy $1,580.
Three months after he praised Giuliani, Orlando found himself on the former mayor's payroll. On September 28, 2007, the Giuliani campaign paid one John R. Orlando more than $1,580 for what they deemed on a campaign filing as "political strategy consulting."
Oohhh, "political strategy consulting". Is that what the kids are calling it now?

Nobody in the Giuliani mob camp would comment, including Orlando.

Fox News Host Endorses Tasering Defenseless Female Protesters

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

Oh, those lazy, hazy, tase-y days of autumn:
A Fox News morning host has a novel idea to handle those pesky Code Pink protesters who disrupt political events and Congressional hearings: 50,000 volts of electricity.
This from the station that's also pushing Three-Wives Rudy. What exquisite family values they continue to display!
Brian Kilmead shared his ever-so-evolved views on crowd control Monday morning in a Fox & Friends discussion of a Code Pink-disrupted Hillary Clinton speech. His answer to annoying anti-war types? Tasers or Billy clubs.
So much for compassionate conservatives.
[Brian] Kilmead's Taser-lust came one day after a 20-year-old Maryland man died after being shocked by police.
The world's not violent enough. We need more. And who better to condone brutality than Faux News?

Gonzales Forced to Beg for Money for His Legal Defense

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

Poor Alberto Gonzales. He's gotten himself into so much hot water that he's felt it necessary to create a trust fund to help pay for his legal expenses. That scamp. Always into mischief.

If he did commit perjury, if he did he improperly tamper with a congressional witness, then he's a gen-u-ine stand out!
The establishment of a legal-defense fund for the nation's former chief law-enforcement officer illustrates the potential peril confronting Gonzales, one of a handful of attorneys general to face potential criminal charges for actions taken in office.
Forget about Paddy's frozen toes and my out-of-work, picketing writer. Gonzo needs your money NOW!
David Leitch, a Gonzales friend and general counsel at Ford Motor, wrote in an e-mail solicitation to potential contributors last month that Gonzales is "innocent of any wrongdoing" but does not have the means to pay for his legal defense after a career spent mostly in public service.
Tsk, tsk! Do you feel his pain? Then GIVE! Show your compassion!

White House Claims The Dog Ate Its Emails

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films

They don't know nothin' about no stinkin' e-mails:
A federal judge Monday ordered the White House to preserve copies of all its e-mails, a move that Bush administration lawyers had argued strongly against.
Who, us? We didn't do it. We know nooottthhhhinggg:
The White House has provided little public information about the matter, saying that some e-mails may not have been automatically archived on a computer server for the Executive Office of the President and that the e-mails may have been preserved on backup tapes.
The White House has said that its Office of Administration is looking into whether there are e-mails that were not automatically archived and that if there is a problem, the necessary steps will be taken to address it.
This goes back to the CIA leak case:

Special counsel Patrick Fitzgerald revealed early in 2006 that relevant e-mails could be missing because of an archiving problem at the White House.

We should just "trust" them to do the right thing:

Is Mukasey Worse Than Gonzales?

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

Via The Nation, John Nichols explains why Michael Mukasey is much worse than Alberto Gonzales ever was:
For instance, he has defended the administration's attempts to dramatically expand the definition of executive privilege, telling the Judiciary Committee that it would be inappropriate for a U.S. attorney to press for contempt charges against a White House official who claimed to be protected by a grant of executive privilege. Under this reading of the law, U.S. attorneys would cease to be independent defenders of the rule of law and become mere extensions of the White House.
Guess he's not as "independent" as he says he is. I'm getting angrier by the second with Dianne Lieberman.
As such, Mukasey accepts a politicization of U.S. Attorneys far more extreme than that attempted by Gonzales and former White House political czar Karl Rove when they sought to remove U.S. Attorneys who failed to fully embrace the administration's electoral and ideological goals.
On to unwarranted wiretaps:
But Mukasey does not stop there.
Under questioning from Feingold, Mukasey endorsed the administration's argument that congressional attempts to define appropriate surveillance strategies and techniques could infringe inappropriately on presidential authority.
When pressed by Feingold, Mukasey refused to say whether he thought the president could order a violation of federal wiretapping rules. Feingold's response was measured. "I find your equivocation here somewhat troubling," said the senator.
And because he's smarter, more articulate, and more adept at answering, he's that much more dangerous:
In fact, everything about Mukasey's testimony suggested that he would as Attorney General be more of a threat to Constitutional governance than the inept and frequently inarticulate Gonzales. Mukasey gives every indication that he is as enthusiastic as was Gonzales about helping the president to bend and break they law. The scary thing is that Mukasey appears to be a good deal abler when it comes to cloaking lawlessness in a veneer of legal uncertainty.
Read: Better at legal doubletalk, better at fooling a willingly-fooled Congress, better at getting what Bush wants.
Consider the nominee's suggestion that the president can ignore any law, including the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, if he and his lawyers determine that the law impinges on his authority as commander in chief during wartime.
"The president is not putting somebody above the law; the president is putting somebody within the law," Mukasey explained, with a response that employed legalese at levels not heard in Washington since Richard Nixon boarded that last plane for San Clemente. "The president doesn't stand above the law. But the law emphatically includes the Constitution."

DC Madam to Subpoena GOP Senator Vitter

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

H/t to our pal Blogenfreude for bringing this to my attention. Looks like someone named Vitter is going to get more unwanted attention from the press:
Alleged D.C. Madam Deborah Jeane Palfrey wants to force Sen. David Vitter to tell a judge about his experiences with her escort service.
Palfrey has filed court documents seeking to subpoena the Louisiana senator to testify in an upcoming hearing.
As first reported on WTOP, an escort named Paula Neble claims Vitter, R-La., was a customer.
Palfrey is suing Neble, saying she violated a contract by accepting money for sex.
The Senate welcomed their friend David back. After all, the family values crowd is fine with extramarital sex with a female prostitute.

Had he tippy-tapped his way into something other than that, say, in a public men's room stall, well, maybe then he would have gotten the cold shoulder.

Blackwater Sneaks Silencers Into Iraq

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

Blackwater just gets sleazier and sleazier. It's a good thing they're representing us in Iraq. They really help our image:
Federal agents are investigating allegations that the Blackwater USA security firm illegally exported dozens of firearms sound suppressors -- commonly known as silencers -- to Iraq and other countries for use by company operatives, sources close to the investigation tell NBC News.
They apparently didn't get necessary export approval.
The sources said the investigation is part of a broader examination of potential firearms and export violations.
Now. Guess who's in charge of regulating exports of arms?
Coincidentally, the company's main responsibility in Iraq is protecting officials of the State Department, the agency that regulates exports of arms. The firm had more than $500 million in federal contracts in 2006.
So there we have it.

Blackwater sent the silencers overseas with its employees without getting the necessary export approval.

The penalty is up to 10 years in prison and fines up to $1 million per count.

But why would Blackwater need silencers? To win hearts and minds? Sure, that must be it.

Clarence Thomas Claims His Law Degree Is Worth Only 15 Cents

This post, written by GottaLaff, originally appeared on Cliff Schecter's Brave New Films Blog

Is that with or without inflation, Clarence?
in the 1970s for his difficulty finding a job after he graduated.
Some of his black classmates say Thomas needs to get over his grudge because Yale opened the door to extraordinary opportunities.
Wait. You defaced your own law degree? From Yale? And it's only worth 15 lousy cents? Hell, just typing the word "Yale" cost me $45,000, not counting books and living expenses.
The conservative justice says he initially considered his admission to Yale a dream, but soon felt he was there because of his race. He says he loaded up on tough courses to prove he was not inferior to his white classmates but considers the effort futile. He says he was repeatedly turned down in job interviews at law firms after his 1974 graduation.
Now, Clarence. A smile goes a mile, but a frown brings you down.
Thomas says he stores his Yale Law degree in his basement with a 15-cent sticker from a cigar package on the frame.
You smoke 15-cent cigars? And you poo-poo a Yale law degree? This is the kind of judgment we get from a Supreme Court justice? I've witnessed 3-year-olds near light sockets with better reasoning.
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