Tag Archives: Congress

Occupy Congress? Who is that really keeping occupied? You.

A number of my friends want to OCCUPY CONGRESS. Jan 17 Opening Day. I suppose every day might be appropriate to read our representatives the riot act, but doesn’t such an action perpetuate the delusion that our legislators ever listen? Proponents, Dems typically, argue “well, it’s the only system we got.” They say that about elections, about incumbents, and about Capitalism. Well, ours are the only lives we have too. Why piss them away on old assumptions, which have delivered us from absolutely nothing? A corporate-trust, inherited-wealth hierarchy is designed to outpace ordinary lifespans. Occupy Congress? Who is that really keeping occupied?

I know where Congressman Lamborn is – because no one is telling OR asking. Re: media blackout on junkets to Israel

Calls to Doug Lamborn’s office inquiring as to his whereabouts produces this charade: “Um, I don’t know. Let me ask. They don’t know. I’m not certain who would know. Could you hold please?” And we never get an answer. That his office won’t say, coupled with the media’s strange incuriosity, points to a self-enforced news moratorium on where a fifth of US congress is spending the August recess: as guests of Israel and the most powerful DC lobby. It’s been reported that a record 81 members are on an all-expense-paid junket to Israel, but their identities are a closely guarded secret. The US TV audience can be let to see their representatives give standing ovations to the Israeli prime minister, but visit Israel? The media blackout would have you think there’s something wrong with that.

Middle East peace groups and Palestinian rights organizations have had to painstakingly gather the information from stray news reports out of Israel, or from congressional offices reluctant to let it be know. So far 45 names are known to be on this year’s junket. Doug Lamborn is not on the list, but his office probably has a lower self-respect threshold for playing dumb.

You’d think with the recent furor about calling Obama a Tar Baby, that the media would want to be calling Lamborn to the hot seat. Apparently not. All that’s said is that he hasn’t surfaced to meet with constituents, or give interviews. Last week Lamborn issued a press release unrelated to his recent trouble, probably preplanned, in collaboration with fellow Colorado Congressman Tipton. Tipton, by the way, is among the officeholders known to be in Israel.

Lamborn vacationing in Israel would not be a far-fetched possibility. He attended the junket in 2007 and since then has acted on Israel’s behest in lobbying to drop charges against an accused Israeli spy, in removing legislation which prevented the US from relocating its Tel Aviv Embassy to Jerusalem, and this Spring Lamborn was made co-chair of the Israel Allies Caucus.

What a damn missed opportunity to press them on contacting Tar Baby Lamborn. It would appear that keeping the congressional Israeli lobbying junket on the QT outweighs making Lamborn squirm on camera to explain his non-racist remark. Never mind complicating the issue. What’s a racist WASP doing in the land of Apartheid racism? Well, of course, they’re absolutely related. Oooh, terrible timing. And Lamborn’s a Christian Zionist, so he “likes” Jews, but come the end times, he won’t touch them either.

How is it American elected officials are allowed to behave as agents of a foreign government would be one question, but the more glaring one would be why it is the media is complicit in keeping citizens in the dark?

Partial list of 81 US congressmembers on Israel junket over August recess, according to MoveOver AIPAC

Gus Bilirakis R-9 FL
Mo Brooks R-5 AL
Anne Marie Buerkle R-25 NY
Eric Cantor R-7 VA
Russ Carnahan D-3 MO
Kathy Castor D-11 FL
Steve Chabot R-1 OH (went last month)
Judy Chu D-32 CA
David Cicilline D-1 RI
Yvette Clarke D-11 NY
Mark Critz D- 12 PA
Scott DesJarlais R- 4 TN
Bob Dold R-10 IL (unconfirmed)
Jeff Duncan R-3 SC
Blake Farenthold R-27 TX
Stephen Fincher R-8 TN
Mike Fitzpatrick R-8 PA
Chuck Fleischman R-3 TN
John Garamendi D-10 CA
Kay Granger R-12 TX
Michael Grimm NY-13
Janice Hahn D-36 CA
Jaime Herrera Buetler R-3 WA
Steny Hoyer D-5 MD
Jesse Jr. Jackson D-2 IL
Hank Johnson D-4 GA
Kevin McCarthy CA-22
Gwen Moore D-4 WI
Bill Owens D-23 NY
Steven Palazzo R-4 MS
Ed Perlmutter D-7 CO
Tom Price R-6 GA
Tom Reed R-29 NY
Peter Roskam R-6 IL
Dennis Ross R-12 FL
Loretta Sanchez D-47 CA
David Schweikert R-5 AZ
Terri Sewell D-7 AL (not confirmed)
Adam Smith D-9 WA
Steve Southerland R-2 FLA
Betty Sutton D-13 OH
Scott Tipton R-3 CO
Allen West R-22 FL
Frederica Wilson D-17 FL
Kevin Yoder R-3 KS

Springs congressman Doug Lamborn tells citizens he answers to private propertied constituents not to public

Congressman Doug Lamborn's office at 1272 Kelly Johnson Way doesn't permit protesting
COLORADO SPRINGS- Local citizens have had plenty to protest with Congressman Doug “Obama is a Tar-Baby” Lamborn, so now the Tea Party bigot has put up a sign, NO PROTESTING. Lamborn declined to meet with community leaders from the NAACP on Monday, or Move-On organizers on Wednesday. Are you in Colorado Congressional District Five? Well, you may neither SOLICIT a meeting with your government representative, nor LOITER hoping to wait him out. Politicians like Lamborn who want to shove undemocratic corrupt legislation down people’s throats, and spout deeply offensive racist rhetoric out of sheer stupidity, have to hide where constituents can’t reach them.

Congressman Lamborn office park with AECom and other weapons industry swine
Situating your office where your constituents can’t reach you reminds me of former Senator Allard’s office in the Plaza of the Rockies, where security guards forbid entry to anyone who didn’t look investment-banker friendly.

The plaza complex is now the Booz Allen Hamilton building, the world’s largest weapons industry firms, chaired by James Woolsey and his wife, one of the Colorado College trustees. You’ll note that one of Lamborn’s neighbors is AECOM, another giant war profiteer.

At least Allard chose an office which was centrally located, only a block from Congressman Hefley. Doug Lamborn’s office is situated in an industrial office park where no one can hear you scream.

So is isolating yourself from you constituents now standard MO for legislative office-holders? Not really. Representative government is hardly where you want to take a stand against a public’s right to freedom of speech and freedom of assembly. Especially someone espousing to be a patriot for the Tea Party.

Actually, if Lamborn wants to assert that his corporate representation gig is “private property,” I’d say the crafty bugger is right.

Congressman Lamborn says NO SOLICITING, NO PROTESTING, NO LOITERING
No shirt, no shoes? No representation.

War Funding in trouble? I would hope so, but I don’t think so…

The AP report is that War Funding increases were passed by the House, that’s a kind of Dog Bites Man story that’s never changed in my lifetime. Is it a call from the Propaganda Ministry to have “concerned patriots” flood their senators with requests to “get behind the troops” once more?

It’s not bloody likely that anybody in elected office will ever stand up to that baseless emotional plea that not funding for-profit private corporate wars with public money somehow puts “The Troops, Holy and Noble” in more harms way than actually starting such wars in the first place would.

The same loudmouth Hawks, especially those of the ChickenHawk species, who push funding for expanded war every Election Cycle and every Congressional Session are either curiously silent on the subject of compensating the families of the soldier-slaves when they’re destroyed either partially or completely in the course of giving their lives In Defense Of Freedo Conquering Lands and People which and whom do not actually belong under our jurisdiction…. or actively cutting any such compensation. Far less holding the Corporations that make the money from the bloodshed ever being held responsible for their crimes or even financially responsible for paying the bills on the Wars that profit them, and only them, in the way of Taxes.

They even get extra tax incentives to take part in the War Effort. How sick is that?

It would be refreshing to see, more often that is, a Senator or Representative actually stand up in Congress even in committee and demand that any increase in War Funding should be done by a raise in income tax, Specifically On Money, including capital gains, gotten from ANY so-called “defense” contract but, that’s always done by somebody on the “far left” who isn’t going to get any support from the political establishment, and the WarMonger propaganda industry will immediately call out their trusted Voter Shock Troops to make a loud noise about Treasonous! non-support for “The Brave Troops”. Do these same Fox News inspired Morons ever get out in the street and demonstrate against sending Their Own Families and Friends off to kill, die or become crippled or D) All Of The Above for the profit of Rich People who buy their way out of every such war?

Slave-soldiers, break your chains! Break the chain of your sons and now, daughters, for generations to come, being gulled into “serving the country” and Other LIES the recruiters tell them. For God’s sake, there are still people telling their kids that their Great Great Great Great Grandpa “fought and died for States Rights” and that they need to carry on the Family Tradition, but when the “tradition” is one of abject servitude and absolute unquestioning obedience to people who Tell You that they have the authority to order you around like some kind of slave… they’re not being recruited to fight for Freedom in any form. They’re being recruited to fight for Corporate Slavery, and to make people in other countries the same kind of unthinking, unquestioning Slaves.

People, wake UP! The Corporate overlords who insist that YOU fight and die for THEIR Profits, the same profits they won’t, themselves, fight and die to gain, balk at so much as giving you compensation for the damages they’ll do to YOU and to YOUR families, forever if they’re allowed to do so. They don’t “support the troops” in any way, they refuse to pay their own bills in the way of Taxes.

You’re selling YOUR kids into permanent bondage in order to give these (I’ll make up a new word) BuzzardHawks FREE Money.

The only “freedom” being fought for is the “freedom” of the Very Rich from having to pay their own way in society.

Tea-Party Skulks decide to ramp up their terrorism…

Only, like the jackals they truly are, they did drive-by windowbreakinsgs and split before anybody could fight them. Guess it’s a Republican thing, you know, institutionalized cowardice. Their Skulk “leaders” at DumFox Noose Nutwerx are “fighting a war against Liberals” the same way they “fought” in the VietNam War, which they universally supported, just, you know, not with their own personal presence.
Beck and Limbaugh and Malkin and O’Reilly, Ted “I shit my pants and didn’t shower for a month to play crazy in order to not go to the VietNam War I supported” Nugent, doing their Same Old Tired Ass ChickenHawk routine, urging OTHER PEOPLE to commit the crimes they’re just too yellow to commit themselves.

These “leaders” also tell their Demented Disciples that all you have to do is show a gun to a Liberal and he’ll fold up like a soft-shell taco and say “Oh, Please, Mr. Minuteman Coward, Sir, Please don’t shoot me!”

Even though they were proved wrong at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Knoxville TN… Adkisson is right now in protective custody, hiding behind several rows of bars and a phalanx of Tennessee cops while he shouts “Nigger nigger nigger” at fellow inmates… like the True Monkey in The Zoo that he is. That’s Republican “courage” in action. He picked a fight with a church where he thought everybody was helpless. Kind of like a 4th grade kid who tries to make a reputation beating up on Kindergarten students. Yep, them Republicans sho’ does love them some Baby-Killing. By the way, for those of our newer readers who were hiding under a rock for the past couple of years, two of the “Liberals he shot to death before being wrestled to the ground, one was a Retired Marine.. and both of them got between the muzzle of his Elmer Fudd pop-gun and the CHILDREN of the church who he was targeting.

“Be vewwy vewwy quiet— I’m hunting Wibewals! huhuhuhuhuhu!”

See, Oh Big Bwave “patwiiots”, the problem with your leaders’ plans is that exactly NONE of you Tee-Pottie freaks are man enough to do anything like that unless you catch somebody out alone, and you have several of your Big Bwave Patwiot Fwiends with you. And your Elmer Fudd guns. You’re just as yellow as your “leaders”.

Karl Rove, speaking of Killer Kowardice, actually wrote a book using the word “courage” as part of the title.

I used to wonder if all the Republicans are a bunch of chickenshit Retards. Now it’s been confirmed.

Act Blue is not going to stop Joe Wilson

Republican representative in the HouseProgressive websites are raising money to defeat GOP Tourette’s poster child Joe Wilson in the next election. Is it going to work? No. You can’t stop populist assholes like Wilson, or Vitter, or Delay, or Gingrich, or Lieberman, can you? Incumbent embarrassments have legions of loyal constituents. That’s who you have to stop. If you want to stop Wilson you have to insist the South Carolina prosecutor’s office isn’t dropping charges of domestic violence, disorderly conduct, child truancy, poaching, littering, lying about sales use tax, and loitering at nursing homes trying to register voters. Shroud that crowd in red tape and Joe Wilson’s base will head for the hills.

Obama presidential address to Congress addressed to dueling teleprompters

Obama addresses tele-prompters instead of Congress
I’m sorry, but I can no longer be awed by Barack Obama’s unfaltering eloquence, I’m too distracted. When our impressive speaker in chief addresses an audience, he looks from side to side, but never in between. Have you noticed that? We think he’s politely avoiding looking into the camera, but everyone sitting directly in front of him must feel like chopped liver, struck by how enamored he is of the teleprompters.

I’m beginning to wonder if Obama spoke this way from the start at the 2004 DNC, because now it seems he never doesn’t.

Press conference
Even at his first presidential press conference a couple weeks ago, Obama’s head swiveled from side to side, his eyes never panned. From other television camera angles we could see the reporters were arrayed right in front of him. Can you imagine sitting across the table from a dinner companion who can’t stop talking to his knife and fork?

A friend of mine was impressed that Obama’s answers were nine minutes long. I was starting to wonder at the inconsistency of the president choosing questions from reporters in the center, but then proceeding to mimic what I can only presume was a campaign whistle stop posture, speaking from the back of a train caboose, alternately addressing people on one side of the track, then the other.

Address to Congress
The image above, by the way, is grabbed from a network broadcast of last night’s address to Congress. This angle wasn’t shown on the White House streamed video, nor that of C-Span. Every TV director’s cut of our new president’s speech featured plenty of his DC audience, rising and clapping repeatedly, but the official version completely avoided this specific vantage point. As far as I could tell, it was the only angle they excluded.

Care to imagine why? I’m thinking it’s why I insisted on finding the sequence to illustrate this post. I caught sight of the tell-tale spectacle on an evening news recap, and then hunted until late for the footage. Throughout the address, from plenty of angles, the teleprompters were plainly evident. It’s not like the cameras avoided them. But this was the only view which showed Obama’s line of sight.

This shot makes plain what Obama was looking at, juxtaposed against the mass of legislators, cabinet members, and Supreme Court justices, at whom he wasn’t.

I’ll leave it to another time to question why the networks supplemented their coverage with this shot, three times, instead of going with the official feed.

It could owe also to the non-novelty of everything Obama is saying, but I’m just bored. Now his mechanical turning to and fro compels me to think we’re both watching a slow-motion tennis match. And instead of following the ball, our eyes linger on the players, as if the goal of this game is to compare what the players are wearing to determine whose tennis white socks were the ones bleached with Clorox and whose were not.

Teleprompters

President Obama’s gaze was bouncing back and forth between the teleprompters obviously. And what’s wrong with reading a speech anyway? That Obama was reading was obvious by the occasional false starts he made. I noted the omission of a consonant which produced an incongruous word choice, and a missed punctuation, among others. Neither would be errors made in extemporized locution or a recitation of memorized text.

We can see the smoky plexi-glass plates on stands positioned at each side of the podium. Angled at 45 degree to the floor, they reflect whatever is transcripted from projectors below, without blocking the view of the audience, and creating the illusion that the speaker is looking through the glass. The panels bookend the podium at something like 60 degrees to either side of the speaker, which means his head has an approximate 120 degree range of motion, except really only at the two extremes. The entire panorama in between, as Obama’s quick head turns suggest, remains perilously unprompted.

Does it seem to you like Obama retrieves only a solitary phrase from each side? As near as I can measure, Obama turns his head with the same frequency that George Bush used to take a pause. Bush started to make fewer gaffs when he stuck to: short phrase, breath, short phrase, breath. Now it looks like Obama could have served as Bush’s metronome. At least Obama’s delivery demonstrates a stronger lung capacity; and I think we’re all thrilled with the more sophisticated grammar. But has the new president as limited an audio-memory as our previous idiot in chief? I’m afraid to think it.

I am still impressed by President Obama’s projected confidence, and I am not about to confuse him for a moron, but that first press conference worried me. Why is it, and how is it, that Obama would be fielding questions with the aid of a teleprompter?

Remember when simpleton Dubya was stumped by an unexpected question and told the correspondent that he wished he’d received his “written question beforehand?” It’s not difficult to imagine that questions are submitted ahead of time, nor might it be so unreasonable, when the Free World hangs on a US president’s every utterance. But I did imagine that Obama was up to the task of responding with an answer. He needn’t improvise one, but you’d think he could trusted to remember it.

Are the teleprompters there to assist the president with his phrasing, or are they there to enforce that his answers, like the correspondents’ questions, stick to the script?

Rod Blagojevich a Great American Hero

Governor Rod Blogojevich Blaggo BlaggovichDeposed Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich earns my nomination for great American hero. What hyperbolic laurels would fit a loudmouth buffoon? Be fair. Blagojevich brought the media spotlight to an overlooked exploit of American political cronyism: a governor’s solitary prerogative to appoint national legislators. Alright, Blago didn’t mean to. But if the little Dutch boy had stuck his Rod Blagojevich into the dike, instead of his finger, would the little pervert be any less a hero?

Had you wondered how so many otherwise quite obviously unelectable, pasty white men of entitled bearing, each of them visibly the creepiest of crooks, become unassailable political incumbents? They sneak into office aided by other white cronies. And the governor’s appointment is the fast track.

Blagojevich wanted his share in the payola, but maybe other governors have simply been more discrete. A look at just the appointments made after the formation of Barack Obama’s cabinet, turns up odors of the most dubious of machinations. In this case, those chosen were Democrats who look more like Republicans, and certainly nothing like the kind of politician which the mostly progressive American voter would have supported in the last election.

Should legislative seats be appointed by a governor? Someone has to do it I suppose. A governor is elected after all. Maybe in this instance he’s representing his constituents in choosing a senator for them.

But a recent Obama cabinet appointment episode calls that justification into question. When Obama picked Republican Senator Judd Gregg for Commerce Secretary, a deal was struck whereby the senator would only consent to the appointment if the senator’s state governor agreed to allow a Republican replacement. Who then, can be said to have made the choice of that representative?

Whether it’s a bribe paid to a governor, fundraising shenanigans, or a favor offered by the president, it’s still crooked.