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August 19, 2006

Excuse us for harping on the Lieberman thing, but a couple of articles have appeared that add credence to BuzzFlash's prediction that Joe Lieberman will jump to the GOP side of the aisle if he is re-elected. As we have speculated, he will pull a "reverse" Jim Jeffords and remain an "Independent," but formally affiliate himself with the Republican caucus.

by Jeff Cohen

The top story on TV news lately has not been the Iraq war or tentative Lebanon peace, or major court rulings on tobacco and warrantless wiretapping, or oil prices or pension "reform" or any of a dozen stories that affect millions of citizens.

by Steven Hill

When Fidel Castro recently underwent intestinal surgery, suddenly there was a whirl of news stories in the U.S. media, the type of attention usually reserved for rock stars and champion athletes. What is this love-hate fascination with the ruler of a small island nation? Is it the tempestuous Cold War history, Cuba's close proximity to Florida, memories of the boy Elian, or the beautiful beaches and palm trees?


Sure enough, following yesterday's big federal court decision (pdf) striking down Bush's warrantless wiretapping program, conservatives have begun their predictable response: attack the judge who made the ruling, Anna Diggs Taylor.

Friday, 18 August 2006 05:05

BuzzFlash Mailbag for August 18, 2006


Subject: WHY is the Dept. of Homeland Security involved in the arrest of John Mark Karr?

Dear Buzz,

I do NOT pretend to have any special knowledge about the confession of John Mark Karr to the JonBenet Ramsey murder ... but this whole thing has the smell of a false confession to me.

by Danny Schechter, Mediachannel.org

New York, New York August 16: When you play chess, you think ahead. What will your next move be, and how is it likely to be countered? Ultimately it is a game of strategy.

by Steven Jonas, MD, MPH

In a series of columns on ThePoliticalJunkies.net last fall (see for example "The Future of the Democratic Party, III: First Thoughts on Dealing with the DLC," October 20, 2005), I speculated that there would be a forthcoming organizational split in the Democratic Party. The reasons? Seemingly irreconcilable differences over such matters as the future of Constitutional Democracy in the United States, the War on Iraq, unilateral vs. multi-lateral foreign policy, the future of "globalization" which in effect means the continued unfettered export of US capital, separation of church and state and freedom of belief in matters of religion, equality before the law for all identity groups within our society. It seemed to me then, and it surely does now, that the Democratic Party is headed towards the kind of break-up that overtook the Whig Party in the 1850s over the issue of the expansion of slavery in the Territories.


Having so often pointed out what I consider CNN's shortcomings, I am compelled to bring you their finest moment: "JACK CAFFERTY: Wolf, you know, it seems like we are having this discussion about this judge's ruling sort of in the abstract, as though there's no precedent for what the judge decided. The judge, in effect, upheld the ruling of the FISA court, which says if you want to wiretap phones, you need a warrant to do so. The court was created by Congress in 1978, I think it was. And the law of the land says get a warrant. The actions of the administration have ignored the law of the land in that regard. So it's not a discussion in the abstract. It's not hypothetical. There are laws on the books against what the administration is doing and it's about time somebody said it out loud. This federal district judge ruled today President Bush is breaking the law by spying on people in this country without a warrant. The judge said the president is violating the first amendment to the constitution, the fourth amendment to the constitution and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, FISA, passed by Congress in 1978, specifically to prevent this kind of abuse of power. It was being done before. That's why the FISA court was created in the first place. So what does this mean? It means President Bush violated his oath of office, among other things, when he swore to uphold the constitution of the United States. It means he's been lying to us about the program since it started, when he's been telling us there's nothing illegal about what he's been doing. A court has ruled it is illegal. And it means a 75-year-old black female judge in Michigan has finally stepped in and done the job that Congress is supposed to do, namely oversight of the executive branch of government. But the Congress is controlled by the Republicans and they are controlled by the president and they have done nothing in the way of oversight. I hope it means the arrogant inner circle at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue may finally have to start answering to the people who own that address, that would be us, about how they conduct our country's affairs."

Friday, 18 August 2006 01:54

World Media Watch for August 18, 2006


1//The Daily Star, Lebanon--HIZBULLAH BEGINS MONUMENTAL TASK OF REBUILDING SOUTHERN SUBURBS (Under a red banner which read "made in the USA," heavy earth-moving machinery, bulldozers and trucks lifted massive rubble and debris from a bombed-out residential building in the heart of the southern suburbs, an area that was once the home of 500,000 mostly Shiite residents. Four days after the UN sponsored cease- fire between Israel and Hizbullah fighters, the southern suburbs turned into one giant 20-kilometer workshop made up of buildings and shops that are either totally destroyed or partially damaged. But the heavy machinery clearing the rubble to pave the way for reconstruction belong to Hizbullah, the party responsible for the capture of two Israeli soldiers that triggered the 34-day war. "The party is keeping its promise to help rebuild the southern suburbs and the villages in the South that were hit by the Israeli forces," Ghassan Darwish, a senior Hizbullah official, told The Daily Star. ... Some critics say that Nasrallah's promise to rebuild these areas was nothing but an attempt to silence growing criticism of the war as well as a way of retaining his wide support among the Shiites that represent more than 40 percent of Lebanon's population. But whatever the reasons behind Nasrallah's motives, most of residents of the southern suburbs believe that the party will keep its promise to rebuild the area.)

August 18, 2006


Given that the White House is de facto supporting Lieberman in Connecticut, wouldn't it be a strong likelihood, were Lieberman to win in Connecticut, that he would declare himself an independent aligned with the Republicans?

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