Friday, June 15, 2007

Bush makes power grab

Why am I not surprised?

Posted by Jerome Corsi on Worldnet Exclusive Commentary.
WND Exclusive Commentary
Bush makes power grab
Posted: May 23, 2007

President Bush, without so much as issuing a press statement, on May 9 signed a directive that granted near dictatorial powers to the office of the president in the event of a national emergency declared by the president.

The “National Security and Homeland Security Presidential Directive,” with the dual designation of NSPD-51, as a National Security Presidential Directive, and HSPD-20, as a Homeland Security Presidential Directive, establishes under the office of president a new National Continuity Coordinator.

That job, as the document describes, is to make plans for “National Essential Functions” of all federal, state, local, territorial, and tribal governments, as well as private sector organizations to continue functioning under the president’s directives in the event of a national emergency.

The directive loosely defines “catastrophic emergency” as “any incident, regardless of location, that results in extraordinary levels of mass casualties, damage, or disruption severely affecting the U.S. population, infrastructure, environment, economy, or government functions.”

When the president determines a catastrophic emergency has occurred, the president can take over all government functions and direct all private sector activities to ensure we will emerge from the emergency with an “enduring constitutional government.”

Translated into layman’s terms, when the president determines a national emergency has occurred, the president can declare to the office of the presidency powers usually assumed by dictators to direct any and all government and business activities until the emergency is declared over.

Ironically, the directive sees no contradiction in the assumption of dictatorial powers by the president with the goal of maintaining constitutional continuity through an emergency.

The directive specifies that the assistant to the president for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism will be designated as the National Continuity Coordinator.

Further established is a Continuity Policy Coordination Committee, chaired by a senior director from the Homeland Security Council staff, designated by the National Continuity Coordinator, to be “the main day-to-day forum for such policy coordination.”

Currently, the assistant to the president for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism is Frances Fragos Townsend.

Townsend spent 13 years at the Justice Department before moving to the U.S. Coast Guard where she served as assistant commandant for intelligence.

She is a White House staff member in the executive office of the president who also chairs the Homeland Security Council, which as a counterpart to the National Security Council reports directly to the president.

The directive issued May 9 makes no attempt to reconcile the powers created there for the National Continuity Coordinator with the National Emergency Act. As specified by U.S. Code Title 50, Chapter 34, Subchapter II, Section 1621, the National Emergency Act allows that the president may declare a national emergency——000-.html
requires that such proclamation “shall immediately be transmitted to the Congress and published in the Federal Register.”

A Congressional Research Service study notes under the National Emergency Act, the president “may seize property, organize and control the means of production, seize commodities, assign military forces abroad, institute martial law, seize and control all transportation and communication, regulate the operation of private enterprise, restrict travel, and, in a variety of ways, control the lives of United States citizens.”

The CRS study notes that the National Emergency Act sets up congress as a balance empowered to “modify, rescind, or render dormant such delegated emergency authority,” if Congress believes the president has acted inappropriately.

NSPD-51/ HSPD-20 appears to supersede the National Emergency Act by creating the new position of National Continuity Coordinator without any specific act of Congress authorizing the position.

NSPD-51/ HSPD-20 also makes no reference whatsoever to Congress. The language of the May 9 directive appears to negate any a requirement that the president submit to Congress a determination that a national emergency exists, suggesting instead that the powers of the executive order can be implemented without any congressional approval or oversight.

Homeland Security spokesperson Russ Knocke affirmed that the Homeland Security Department will be implementing the requirements of NSPD-51/ HSPD-20 under Townsend’s direction.

The White House had no comment.

Related offer:

Sen. Tom Coburn’s “Breach of Trust: How Washington Turns Outsiders into Insiders”

Related story:

Bush grants presidency extraordinary powers

Monday, May 21, 2007


I sincerely hope the writers of this article will allow me to reprint this article. It explains far better than I, can the problems of the working poor.

This is an article from the Charlotte Observer, in Charlotte and Mecklenburg, NC.

It explains far better the plight of the working poor than anything I could ever write.

Posted on Sun, May. 20, 2007

A WISH to make rent more affordable
Subsidies, support services would help the working poor

Joyce Turner holds a recent photograph of her 13-year-old son in her room at the YWCA where she lives. TurnerĂ¢€™s wish is to get a place of her own and bring her son back to live with her.

For many of Charlotte’s working poor, $8 an hour comes down to this: a narrow room in a transitional home, an envelope of money to a faraway child and thousands of dollars in long-unpaid debt.

Compared with the shelter floors where Joyce Turner has had to lie in the past, her YMCA room is “heaven,” she said. But it isn’t a permanent home.

Social service agency workers have long tried to help residents like Turner, who works full time for a cleaning service but can’t afford an apartment to live with her 13-year-old son. For $355 a month, Turner rents a small but clean space at the YWCA on Park Road, about 170 miles away from her child. The Y offers case management to help her get back onto her feet.

But there is a gap, agencies say, between this and permanent housing. A growing number don’t make it to the other side. Some agencies are trying to start a new program: Workforce Initiative for Supportive Housing, or WISH, a program established at the Foundation For The Carolinas to offer a rent subsidy and services to the working poor.

Generally, WISH would subsidize rent by about $250 a month — the difference between the $550 average rent for an older apartment and the $300 that a worker making $8 an hour can afford. Darren Ash, a leader of the effort, stresses that WISH is not like Section 8 housing, the federal housing subsidy for low-income families. Each client would receive personalized support for as long as they need it.

Because of Charlotte’s shortage of affordable housing — estimated at a deficit of more than 12,000 units — even those who move on from transitional homes are devoting a dangerously large portion of their paychecks to rent, workers say. WISH would offer some stability. Otherwise, any small financial emergency could leave them homeless again.

“We just serve the same people over and over and over again,” said Susan Burgess, mayor pro tem, who chairs the City Council’s housing and neighborhood development committee

For years, the agencies — Crisis Assistance Ministry, Lutheran Family Services, Charlotte Emergency Housing, Uptown Shelter and various shelters in Charlotte — had pondered a way to start WISH. Recently, momentum has built. In two months of fundraising, religious groups and corporations have committed about $2 million, largely due to Ash’s efforts.

Ash has been educating congregations on how thousands of families such as Turner’s increasingly can’t afford housing. They become “stuck” in shelters or transitional homes, he said, unable to leave because of low wages, bad credit and debt.

Besides the $2 million committed, organizers have asked the city for $200,000 a year for five years, beginning in the 2008 fiscal year.

Burgess, who supports the measure, said passage could be difficult because of a tight budget. But she will work to get WISH in the budget, she said. “To me, it’s just cost-effective,” she said.

Within the next two months, WISH organizers hope to enter their first clients into a pilot program. WISH will work with landlords to find vacant units, bridging financial gaps for the client’s rent and pairing families with case managers who help them become self-sufficient. Ash said they are looking at about 4,000 vacant apartments.

The initiative would target only those who have a stable job. So it would be unlikely to alleviate overcrowding in homeless shelters like the Salvation Army, said Deronda Metz, director of social services there. Most who enter that shelter are unemployed, she said.

At the YWCA, Turner spread photos of her five children onto her bed. Four are adults; her son lives in a children’s home in Oxford, about 170 miles northeast of Charlotte, If only she could afford an apartment in a safe neighborhood, she said, she could bring him home.

“If I’m coming home from work and my son gets home before me,” she said, “I want to know that he’s gonna be all right.”

The Poverty Line

About 82,000 residents in Mecklenburg County live below the federal poverty line, measured as earning an income of about $19,000 for a family of four. In Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, there are 1,900 homeless children.

To Learn More

For more information or to donate, please contact Darren Ash at

Posted by: Linda H. at May 21, 2007 11:34 AM
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Thursday, April 12, 2007

Shades of yesteryear

Senate panel seeks missing White House records

Thu Apr 12, 11:29 AM ET

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. congressional panel investigating the firing of federal prosecutors authorized subpoenas on Thursday for e-mails the White House has declared may be missing.

Somehow that reminds me of something that happened - humm just how many years ago - I believe Nixon (incidentally also a Republican) had some tapes that came up missing.
Is there something about being a Republican that makes the Presidents that are elected somehow brain deficient? Ford decided he didn't want to be President, so he pardoned Nixon - before any charges were actually brought against him, Reagan couldn't seem to remember anything about the Iranian Contra Affair, Bush Sr. forgot about his "I will not raise taxes" speech,and now George W. can't seem to find all his e-mail messages.

Not, that I'm actually accusing the Republican Party of doing anything wrong, although perhaps they do seem to be having trouble finding people with good solid memories.

It just seems circumspect. In a funny, odd way.

I'm not by any means excusing the Democrats for anything either - but not keeping one's pants on does seem to pale in comparison. At least those flaws don't actually affect the citizens - expect of course the ones involved in the affairs.

Just something to ponder.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Who is the REAL Enemy of Today?

There are times when I find myself wondering just who the actually threat to my American Way of life comes from.

For years I was taught that the enemy to the American Way was the Communists. Any one here remember the Senate Hearings, Joe McCarty and his campaign against everyone he believed might be a communist?

Then it was the Cubans and of course the Soviet Union. Can anyone say “Duck and Cover”?

This of course was followed quickly by the Domino theory. Still fear of the Communists, only this time in Vietnam. “GI Go Home.”
President Johnson became my personal enemy when he sent out solders to Vietnam without actually telling anyone. The Tonkin Gulf Resolution I believe it was named. I still think of him as sort of ‘hiring a hit men’, murderer.

President Nixon became the enemy when he played games with “plumbers”

This anti-communist fear was suddenly replaced and we were in fear of some kind religious takeover when it became obvious the Iranians hated us.

Of course, at first, I had no doubt who the enemy was when Iran took the American hostages. I remember watching their release and telling myself I’d done the right thing for them when I voted for Reagan, even though it sort of felt like submitting to blackmail. It appeared to me that the negotiations for their release apparently occurred during Carter’s time office. I didn’t like giving Reagan credit for something I didn’t really think HE had done. I finally realized I wasn’t real sure who the enemy was for sure that year - Iran, Reagan or Carter. Iran for taking the Hostages but negotiating with Carter, thus making me feel as if the only way to get our people back was to vote for Reagan.

Then of course I had no doubt that Kuwait needed out help. After all they asked us for help. Iraq was clearly the enemy then. One country had no right to invade another country - that was my battle cry. Help the little guy out over the big, strong, tough bully.

Now that brings me today. After 9/11, I was told the enemy was Obama Bin Ladin and the Taliban. Ok, that was simple enough, go get him, bring him to justice, and then execute him (The idea being that he was truly guilty). The same for very member of the terrorist group involved in 9/11.

Because I was told the training bases for Bin Laden were in Afghanistan, I could sort of see taking troops there. After all, if Afghanistan wasn’t gong to give us our enemy we had a right to take him. Right? Wellllll - Maybe

Then suddenly the enemy was Saddam, in Iraq. Wait a minute. I THOUGHT WE WERE GOING AFTER TERRORISTS? Not Iraq. Why were we no longer trying to find Bin Ladin? I even heard our President state that Bin Ladin was not our target anymore, Saddam was because he refused to comply with the UN orders. Hey wait a minute - I thought this War of Terror was about the TERRORISTS - not dethroning Saddam, but getting justice for the deaths during 9/11.

Just who was our enemy any way? Then I also discovered it was okay for our President to do Exactly what Saddam had done to Kuwait, INVADE them. So instead of seeking justice, we were now acting as some kind of hit men unofficially appointed by the UN? Hummm - I don’t know about that one….

We suddenly had laws allowing our own laws to be broken - the biggest of which was the Patriot Act. And why - Certainly not because we are seeking justice anymore.

Instead we have instigated invasions that require some sort of modification of the Rights of AMERICAN CITIZENS, and subjugate the laws of the International World. Suddenly it’s okay to hold people with out charges, trials, and subject them to torture. All of the values we have held as Americans are under attack. In the name of FREEDOM? What kind of freedom will we have if we allow ourselves to become no better than our worst enemy.

Who the Hell is our real enemy now - Communists, terrorists, Iraq, Iran,North Korea, or ourselves - our own government. I find myself leaning more and more towards the last. I at least need a score card. What about you?

Posted by: Linda H. at March 29, 2007 02:23 PM

Monday, March 19, 2007

Cleaning Up Ouor Own Houses

I have just arrived home after having spent over two weeks in south Georgia trying to help those who were affected by the tornadoes that it both Georgia and Alabama. It was as I hoped, a very memorable experience, with many tears and many smiles.

Both times I have been called by the Red Cross to deploy to help others, I find myself constantly amazed at how other American citizens live. Particularly before the disaster hit. I have seen Americans who literally live in hovels. 4 ply wood walls, a rug on a dirt floor, and a ply wood ceiling\roof. These are HOMES to so many.

How can we possibly allow American CITIZENS to live in these conditions!! Why are we so terribly concerned about how people in other countries live when we have people here at HOME who need our help?

We as, Americans, need to clean up our on home, before we attempt to clean up someone else's.

We need:

1. To locate and find those persons living in totally substandard conditions and either help them find affordable low loans for new or used homes, or perhaps tie in a loan with a grant for those who own their own lots. I.e. Mobile housing would be a good choice. I do not mean the FEMA homes, which are very small, and poorly put together. Putting several of these homes in one location with attractive landscaping would help to insure the care of the homes. Individuals could be hired from within the smaller community as security guards, ground maintenance, day care workers, and transportation. Training for these jobs would be cost efficient as these people would work for and be paid by the small community members themselves on a siding scale from their own incomes.

2. Use facilities already available for training members of a community for future employment. We have hundreds of empty schools at night and abandoned super stores that could be used to as to set up classrooms. These building could be donated by their owners as a tax deduction, and used to teach drop-outs, or the under-educated how to properly count money and run a cash register, care for children and elderly, reading , and even speaking English. They could even learn skills that are disappearing as our elderly die, such as tatting, wood working, canning, whittling, farming on a small scale, etc. These skills could be taught by the elderly themselves, with payment helping to supplement their fixed incomes, without effecting the amounts they presently earn. This additional money would come from small fees paid by the students or if necessary by the federal government as a small interest loan. In addition supplies would be paid for in the same manner, or even by donations from those who wish to have a greater tax deduction.

3. To develop a national insurance program for all citizens - particularly those with lower incomes. Included in this insurance would be training in nurturing, proper methods of exercise, and simple information regarding the care of colds, flu, bloody noses, CPR, the Heimlich maneuver, strokes and heart attacks, etc. In other words, how to determine an emergency from a non-emergency.

4. Lower the cost of fresh foods, such as carrots, beans, tomatoes, apple, bananas, etc. so everyone could afford to eat the required amounts of fruits and vegetable needed a day. This would be included in the supplements given to farmers for their fields.

These are merely a few of the ways we as AMERICANS could help out our own citizens. It would certainly be a better use of our tax dollars than literally mis-using it in a foreign country as has be the case thus far.

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Who will win my vote? and what should we do about Bush?

I have been against the War in Iraq since before the publicized "original" conception. I was, however, not the slightest surprised when President Bush decided to invade. I am $50 richer because I bet my husband in 2001, shortly after his inauguration, that George W. Bush would figure out a way to get the US into Iraq.

When the bombs hit the World Trade Center and the Pentagon everyone wanted,even needed a scapegoat at that time - someone to blame.

It was obviously not politically practical to actually go after the country who actually 'grew' the terrorists - Saudi Arabia because they are our "friends". After all everyone knows how dependent we are on Arabian oil. Besides they might actually fight back. So the training grounds in Afghanistan were chosen. This made some sense to me. However settling for the terrorists training camps was simply not enough for our President. This was just not GRAND enough.

IMHO, President Bush wanted\ maybe even felt politically, that he had to find a country with just enough political problems to try to justify our invasion so we (he) would and could show our might, power, and strength to the world - even though it really wasn't necessary.

Had the bombings actually brought us to our knees, then and only then, (maybe) should we have become the aggressor. However the bombings did no such thing. Instead they brought our country together. This unity was ignored (or possibly simply went over) our President's head. He didn't care whether the chosen country hadn't actually been aggressive toward the US recently - if ever.

I know... Kuwait - but that still had little to do with actually attacking the US. Actually I truly believe Bush just plain wanted to invade Iraq, if for no other reason than pride. Because of the attempted assignation on his father's (George H.Bush) life, the younger Bush may have felt the need to show his father, and the rest of the world how he would not be out done by his old man. IMHO, G.W.Bush did not want to be compared to his father as a president and come up lacking. A really GOOD war would enhance his place in American History, and he would come out on top when compared to his father. Do I believe that it is possible for one man to be so arrogant that he would drag an entire country into war just for his own aspirations? yes, obviously I do. It's been done before, Japan, with Tito,Germany with Hitler, and Napoleon in France. Why not today?

Once Iraq was settled on, all that needed to be done was to find reasons to attack. I remember well watching Colon Powell, whom I respected, (and frankly still do, especially since he apologized for being manipulated) showing the 'pictures' of the actual locations of the Weapons of Mass Destruction.

(I still want to know where the pictures came from, and just who decided they were
pictures of WMD).

I don't believe that Bush was personally or politically satisfied with the Taliban as his "Bad Guys". Afghanistan just wasn't very exciting and Bush wanted\needed to keep the momentum going so he could invade Iraq - with the blessings of the American people. This is where our President truly showed his keen ability. He managed to use the Media almost against itself. Like it or not, Bush was very effective in this task. By dropping hints and releasing tiny to tidbits of information to the media about Iraq, and keeping the issue of the bombings live and well, Bush manged to tie both issues together. The entire country was rived up into wanting to DO something, and if Iraq were really breaking International Laws, and potentially sending terrorists of here, well it deserved
our wrath. Not just our wrath of course, but the World's.

The only sticky problem that occurred was when the rest of the world chose to believe Blix's report that there were no WMD.
Well, then obviously the rest of the world was just chicken - hence the bad rutation given to the French.

As the need to retaliate grew, stirred up wildly by the Bush Administration, and of course with Donald Rumsfeld's help, I was not surprised when the majority of Congress agreed with Bush and allowed him to get by with extreme funding, the Patriot Act, and basically sending our men to their death, what we now know was a lie by our own President.

Is it any wonder that the majority of Congress supported Bush when he
decided to get his revenge in Iraq and voted for the Patriot Act? I do not really blame any of the Republicans or Democrats for voting in favor of the war. According to the information made available to the public, had our elected officials not voted to follow the President into Iraq, I would imagine the majority of them would have
been considered traitors or even worse by their constituents. Even if a few of did know the truth, or suspected the truth behind Bush's decision to invade Iraq, they were still had little choice.

If one remembers correctly, back to the time of the our initial invasion of Iraq, the entire country was still looking for someone to blame for the WTC and Pentagon
bombings. All one has to do is realize how quickly many of the American public
came to associate Iraq with terrorism. There are many today who still believe
we are in Iraq because they sent the terrorists over here.

Frankly if any one of the candidates, be they Democrat or Republican, were to stand up and state, "I was wrong, I goofed, and I am sorry for my original vote of support for Iraq, "I believe I would have to definitely consider casting my vote in their direction. Today I am more concerned with those who voted to uphold the Patriot Act. Since I believe that a great deal of the Act is unconstitutional,the candidates that supported it most recently will find it very hard to earn my support.

My point is actually very simple. We, as American citizens, have an important decision to make. To allow Bush to continue pushing our country around, and pushing around our elected officials, or demand our elected officials to stand up and do something to stop him. Personally I favor impeachment, with a heavy prison sentence for he and his supporters in office,- i.e. Bush and our illustrious past Secretary of War ( I know, I know, he wasn't technically the Secretary of War, but State, but might as well had been,) Donald Rumsfeld, and Vice President Cheney. I could actually see a case made for premeditated murder.

If someone doesn't stop him, well I would be willing to bet my husband another $50 that we will be in Iran before Bush leaves office.

Besides,not only has our President taken us to war,illegally, or at the very least unethically and immorally, he managed to undo the unity that for a while brought this country together. Sometimes, I'm not sure which was worse.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

What is a Demorublican or Robocrat?

To be a true Demorublican or Robocrat one must believe that all sides have both good and bad political platforms.

I do not understand how the Republicans can be pro-death penalty, yet against abortion. Both require the death of a human being - at least in terms of potentially being alive. I hesitate to say that either those on death row or zygotes in uteri are sentient beings. Personally, I have no problem with either, as long as both are carefully monitored and are in medically safe environments. This is part of what makes me a Demorublican or Robocrat.

I do not believe the Federal government has the foggiest idea of how to manage any school system. While I favor federal funding, I believe local boards of education, reporting to STATE Boards of Education. The only requirement that should be owed to the Federal Government is a careful accounting of all funds. The idea that all children must learn exactly the same material (i.e. teaching tests) strikes me as being very narrow in depth. Every state has its' own particular needs that are pertinent for its state. Education should be structured around the needs of the children, not the desires of the Federal Government.

I do not like political blackmail. One of the best examples of political blackmail occurred when Elizabeth Dole, as Transportation Secretary refused to honor obligations made to the States unless they passed seatbelt laws. While I wholly agree with the idea of wearing a seatbelt while driving, I do not believe the Federal Government has any right to withhold funding tax money intended for the states in order to force the states into acquiescing.

I am against allowing persons who break the law for benefiting from their actions. Case in point: allowing illegal immigrants to benefit from services initially intended for American citizens. Even the fines do not actually help - it would be cheaper for me to pay the fines that are now being suggested than to pay my current income taxes.

I do not believe we should have one national religion. Christianity is my
preferred religion; however, I can not find it in myself to condemn any other religions. I was raised as a Christian, so it would seem natural for me to stay one.
I feel more at home in my own church, just as I'm sure most religious persons are comfortable in their choice of religious institutions. This is true whether one is of the Christian persuasion, Islamic, Buddhist, etc. Heck, even in our own Christian beliefs we have several many different organized churches!

As one can see I lean heavily on the more "liberal" side of political poll, but I still carry many of the intrinsic values of God, Country, and Family in my political leanings. I simply do not approve of judging anyone because heaven help me if they start judging me.