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Friday, February 03, 2006

Keith Olbermann brings his A-game to O'Reilly

Keith Olbermann's nightly news show Countdown is simply the best cable television has to offer nowadays (yes, it's better than the Daily Show).

Watching him put his witty spin on the day's headlines makes me feel like I'm back in college watching him and Dan Patrick on ESPN's Sportscenter all morning long (while eating the cold pizza from the night before).

His recent attacks on Bill O'Reilly are simply hillarious. Take a look at this video clip and you'll see what I mean. His reading of O'Reilly's quotes in the voice of Ted Baxter is priceless.

Bush-Abramoff photos revealed

$100,000 per minute

All for what?
The White House said Thursday that it plans to ask Congress for an additional $70 billion to pay for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, driving the cost of military operations in the two countries to $120 billion this year, the highest ever.

Most of the new money would pay for the war in Iraq, which has cost an estimated $250 billion since the U.S. invasion in March 2003.

The additional spending, along with other war funding the Bush administration will seek separately in its regular budget next week, would push the price tag for combat and nation-building since Sept. 11, 2001, to nearly a half-trillion dollars, approaching the inflation-adjusted cost of the 13-year Vietnam War.

The cost of military operations in 2006 is $35 billion higher than what Congress had estimated a few months ago that the Defense Department would need this year. The higher costs are occurring even as the Pentagon is planning to reduce troop levels in Iraq in coming months, reflecting the continuing wear and damage to military equipment in desert combat, the need to upgrade protection for U.S. troops and the effort to train and equip Iraqi forces.

No large-scale reconstruction projects are included in the spending, officials said.

Currently, the Defense Department says it is spending about $4.5 billion a month on the conflict in Iraq, or about $100,000 per minute.

Current spending in Afghanistan is about $800 million a month, or about $18,000 per minute.
No Bin Laden, no WMDs, and we're just as vulnerable now than before 9-11.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

First Manchester, now Windsor's DTC gives a thumbs down to Lieberman

(Big hat tip to Brandford Boy over at My Left Nutmeg for the scoop).
Resolved
That the Windsor, Connecticut Democratic Town Committee votes no confidence in Senator Joseph Lieberman's positions for embracing President Bush's position on the Iraq war, including denial that we wrongfully entered the war; denial that the war is being conducted unsuccessfully and the absence of any reasonably detailed standards for withdrawal of American troops from Iraq.


The resolution passed with 34 aye votes, two nays, and one abstention.
Not a good day for Joe.

UPDATE:The Hartford Courant reported on Windsor's vote in today's issue:
Windsor Democrats on Thursday followed their colleagues in Manchester by publicly chastising U.S. Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman for his support of President Bush and the Iraq war.

The Windsor Democratic Town Committee, in a 34-2 decision, approved a resolution calling for a vote of no confidence in Lieberman, D-Conn., for embracing Bush's position on the war, including denying that the United States wrongly entered the war and that it was not accomplishing the objectives set out by the president.

[...]

Windsor town committee member Len Swade referred to Lieberman as Bush's "kissing cousin" as he outlined his reasons for introducing the resolution.

"My goal is to seek a pattern - a groundswell - of Democratic town committee motions in Connecticut that will really get the senator's attention," Swade said Thursday.

Town committee member Leo Canty spoke in favor of the resolution and added that it was not meant to be a swipe at the military in Iraq.

"I'm proud of what the soldiers have done, but I'm not proud of what we have done," he said.

Before the meeting, Windsor Democratic town Chairman Tim Fitzgerald called the proposed resolution a "practical way to get [Lieberman's] attention."

"But I'm not delusional that this is going to change his fundamental way of thinking," Fitzgerald said.
It remains to be seen if quote of no confidence will get Lieberman's attention. I wonder how many more town committees in the state will follow Manchester and Windsor's lead.

While reading the article, I almost spilled food on myself again after reading the following quote from Lieberman's office.
Fitzgerald also spoke to the group before it voted about whether to table the resolution and give Lieberman a chance to defend his position. Lieberman's staff also sent the committee information about his accomplishments, from his support for women's rights to fighting to save the Arctic preserve.
Women's rights? One word: Alito.

More trouble for Lieberman

The perfect political storm is gaining strength which doesn't look good for Joe Lieberman.

As I stated in numerous posts, it's one thing for Lieberman to have the anti-war crowd rallying against you but upsetting the pro-life crowd a whole other can of worms. A real test to Lieberman's disapproval to Samuel Alito happened when he had a chance to decide on supporting a filibuster and like I predicted, he didn't support it.

You can read the writing on the wall. Lieberman was never going to really vote against Alito. It was so easy for Lieberman to vote against Alito when his vote didn't make a difference but when it came time to really put a stop to his nomination, Lieberman showed his true colors.

His decision might come back to haunt him.
Connecticut National Organization for Women
135 Broad Street
Hartford, CT 06105
860.524.5978
860.524.1092 fax
www.ct-now.org
Email: ct_now@yahoo.com

Kathleen Sloan, Executive Director
Rosemary Dempsey, President

For Immediate Release February 1, 2006
Contact Kathleen Sloan, 860-524-5978

LIEBERMAN HAS TURNED HIS BACK ON WOMEN

Senator Lieberman turned his back on this country’s women by refusing to support a filibuster against the confirmation of Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court. Judge Alito was confirmed yesterday by a vote of 58-42. While Connecticut NOW recognizes the 42 senators who voted against confirmation, the crucial vote happened the day before, when senators voted on whether or not to end debate on this nomination. Since the Republican leadership had enough votes to confirm Alito, a filibuster was the only way to prevent his confirmation.

Connecticut NOW applauds Senator Dodd for his support of the filibuster. Shamefully his colleague, Senator Lieberman, demonstrated a lack of respect and concern for the women and girls of Connecticut and the nation by his refusal to support the filibuster. Senator Lieberman pointed out that he had studied Samuel Alito’s record carefully and so he was aware of the threat Alito poses to a woman’s most basic constitutional right: to control her own body and decide whether or not to bear a child. As reported by The Hartford Courant, Senator Lieberman stated that he did not support a filibuster because Alito’s confirmation vote did not meet the standard of “extraordinary circumstances” decreed by the Senate “Gang of 14.” “This is a slap in the face to every woman of this state, no matter her political beliefs, economic status or race,” stated Rosemary Dempsey, President of CT NOW. “What could be a more ‘extraordinary circumstance’ than when a woman’s right to make her own reproductive health decisions is seriously threatened?

The women of Connecticut expected that our senators, who call themselves pro-choice and claim to be supporters of women’s rights, would use every measure available to prevent the confirmation of a judge who undermines and disregards them. Laudably, Senator Dodd did just that; regrettably, Senator Lieberman did not. Senator Lieberman’s vote to shut down debate had the effect of anointing Judge Alito as a Supreme Court Justice. As Kathleen Sloan, Executive Director of CT NOW explained, Senator Lieberman’s vote against Alito on Tuesday was “symbolism without substance”. His failure to support women’s rights at a time when they are most severely threatened by a Supreme Court Justice whose record is replete with contempt for same, makes it highly unlikely that CT NOW will support Lieberman in his bid for re-election.

Cuff 'em and take Newton away

See ya later Moses! Can't say that it's been a pleasure knowing you but I'm sure you'll make a great companion to someone in jail.

From the Hartford Courant
Former state Sen. Ernest Newton, once one of Connecticut's top minority leaders, was sentenced Thursday to five years in prison and three years probation for accepting a $5,000 bribe and other charges.

Before U.S. District Judge Alan Nevas sentenced Newton, the Bridgeport Democrat apologized to his family and community.

Newton, known for his flamboyant suits and outspoken style, pleaded guilty in September to bribery, tax evasion and mail fraud. He resigned his Senate seat a day before his plea.

Supporters packed a courtroom in U.S. District Court in Bridgeport for the sentencing hearing, to which Newton wore a conservative brown suit.

"I apologize to this court, to the federal government, to my family, to my community and to members of the legislature," Newton said. "Not only have I let you down but I've let myself down."

Nevas asked Newton if he stood by past statements that prosecutors targeted him because of his race. Newton is black.

"This is not about black and white," Newton replied. "It's about wrong and right, and I was wrong."

Newton's attorney, Salvatore DePiano, asked Nevas to sentence Newton to community service and home confinement. Federal prosecutors urged a longer sentence.

"We're talking about a long, pervasive, extensive pattern of corrupt conduct," said prosecutor James Finnerty. "He sold his office. It was Newton Inc., open for business 24-7."
Oh, how sweet. When Newton's ass is on the line (no pun intended) he finally says that he's sorry. Well sorry Ernest, I'm not buying it.

This individual had all the time in the world to fess up to his crimes so don't feel sorry for him. Not only did he not express regret during the last year, he played the race card with his "Moses of my people" speech which was not only outrageous, but disgraceful and offensive to many people of color (myself included). Don't feel sorry for him because he didn't give a damn about you and the people he represented when he was raking in the cash and allegedly chit-chatting with the mob.

If you need to see how out of touch this man is, read his quote about the FBI who caught Newton on a wiretap trying to convince friend Warren Godbolt to lie in his testimony about their relationship.

In seeking a lighter sentence, Newton cited 19 letters from political colleagues, friends and relatives attesting to Newton's good character, his struggle against drug addiction and his work on behalf of his constituents.

Newton also has rejected accusations that an FBI wiretap recorded him trying to obstruct justice.

Warren Godbolt pleaded guilty to paying Newton the $5,000 bribe in exchange for help from Newton to obtain a $100,000 grant to a job training facility in Bridgeport Godbolt ran. Godbolt is scheduled to be sentenced Friday.

Nevas said Thursday that Newton clearly obstructed justice by instructing Godbolt to lie to the FBI.


Good riddance.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Rememeber that little thing the President said yesterday about oil...

well, that was all bullshit.
WASHINGTON - One day after President Bush vowed to reduce America's dependence on Middle East oil by cutting imports from there 75 percent by 2025, his energy secretary and national economic adviser said Wednesday that the president didn't mean it literally.

Oh, how the lies catch up to you.

See Lieberman jump for joy


Okay, I had a chance to go back and take a look at the Lieberman footage from last night and I have to revise my earlier statement.

It seems like a very small handful of moderate Democrats stood up along with Lieberman when Bush made his "we're winning the Iraq war" comment and I now understand how I missed it.

You see, what I saw before I spilled all of my food on myself was Joe Lieberman (acting like some rock star groupie) jumping out of his seat in applause to Bush's rhetoric. If you look at the image, you'll see that Joe jumped up faster than ANY OTHER PERSON IN THE AUDIENCE including all of the Republicans.

Other Democrats (who took their time reacting to the President's comment) such as Harold Ford stood up next to Lieberman later (Ford is running for Senate in Tennessee and is behind in polls to a Republican so he can't afford to look too liberal).

The clip is still great because to it illustrates just how out of touch Lieberman is and why he's more popular among Republicans than Democrats in this state.

I'll get the video clip up later.

UPDATE (8:24): You want it, you got it. Watch as Bush spins his Iraq message and Lieberman jumps out of his seat faster than anyone else in the place including all of the Republicans.

Priceless. Thanks for the memories Joe!

UPDATE 2: If you reached this site from Daily Kos, Crooks and Liars, or Atrios, then welcome to CONNECTICUTBlog and I hope you come back often. If you watched the clip and want an alternative to Joe, take a moment and check out my video clips of Ned Lamont and see what he has to say about Lieberman (make sure you check out the clip of Democratic Town Committee member Michael Fuchs of Fairfield as he describes to the audience an encounter he had with Lieberman which, lets just say, left an impression on him).

If you like what you see from Lamont, then go to his site and sign up.

The best blog editor program just got better

Oh, I'm happy they finally upgraded this program and I can now use it full time on my Mac for all my furture posts.

For anyone who is a blogger, may I recommend that you give Mars Edit a try. It's a nice little blog editor which works with all the major blog websites (Moveable Type, Blogger, etc) and has a great spellchecker (something I definitely need). For those who have multiple blogs, Mars Edit can be set up to manage multiple blogs which comes in very handy when you're going back in forth between your sites.

It has a 30-day free trial so give it a test run. You'll love it!

Did anyone see Lieberman jump for joy during Bush's SOTU

Oh man! This is rich!

I think the only channel that caught the image of Lieberman was C-Span so if you weren't watching that channel (and you're an idiot if you weren't...how dare anyone watch cable news), then you missed out on yet another classic Lieberman moment.

Watching Joe Lieberman during the State of the Union is like the gift that keeps on giving.

There was good ol' "say it ain't so" Joe Lieberman jumping (no LEAPING) for joy after Bush gives his "stay the course in Iraq" speech while EVERY Democrat around him was sitting down motionless. If there is a perfect image of how out-of-touch Lieberman is with the Democratic party, THIS WAS IT! I laugh so hard that I spilled the chinese food I was eating all over myself. The guys at C-Span must of knew that this wasn't the best image of Lieberman because they tried to go to another camera but it was too late, the damage was done.

It's better than the Bush kiss and I have it all on my Tivo (happy, happy, joy, joy)! I'll transfer the video to my computer and post the file later, it's just too late now and I'm exhausted after hearing Bush's new (or should I say recycled) line of B.S.

Believe me, if you missed the Lieberman moment, you missed out on yet another priceless "dump Joe" moment! In fact, I think I have the perfect footage for a dump-Joe internet commercial.

As Drudge would say...developing.

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Is Windsor about to give the thumbs down to Joe

Seems like the anti-Lieberman bandwagon is gaining steam with another town committee proposing to express their disapproval with the senator.

From Genghis at Connecticut Local Politics
Apparently, Windsor Democrats have also had enough of Joe Lieberman. They will be voting on two proposed resolutions censuring Senator Lieberman at their next meeting on February 2nd. The resolutions were sent to me by a WDTC member (See comment section for the full text of the proposed resolutions).

The person I talked to said he'd be surprised if at least one of the resolutions didn't pass.


Go and check out Connecticut Local Politcs for all the details.

If you want to see other town committee members express their frustration with Lieberman, click here to hear town committee Michael Fuchs of Fairfield describe an encounter he had with Lieberman and why he will no longer support the senator. You have to see it to believe it!

Kos giving Ned Lamont a helping hand

According to Daily Kos, Ned Lamont is 1/3 of the way of reaching his goal of 1,000 signups from Connecticut with a total of 1,300 signups nationwide. Not bad for someone who just started his website a couple of days ago.

From Daily Kos

As for Ned Lamont, as of yesterday evening he had generated 1,300 signups nationwide to his site, including over 320 from Connecticut.

He needs 1,000 from Connecticut, so we're 1/3 of the way there. If you want to start cleaning house in the DC of people who would pretend to vote against Alito while voting for cloture, we need to start somewhere, and what better place than Connecticut? Let's focus our intra-party energies on this one race.

If you are from Connecticut, great. If you're not, reach out to anyone you know in Connecticut. Start spreading the word about Lamont. Which reminds, me, where is MoveOn and DFA on this? Time for them to get on the ball as well.

Sign up here.

You know what you need to do so go and sign up!

Is the Danbury Police chief in agreement with a hate-group

Here's an interesting note in today's Stamford Advocate about the latest antics of the our favorite hate-group, Connecticut Citizens for Immigration Control (CTCIC), which caught my eye. It seems that CTCIC founder Paul Streitz received word from Danbury Police Chief Alan Baker that, according to city attorneys, the Danbury Police Department can enforce immigration laws.

Streitz has continued his push to get city officials and police officers in the state to enforce federal immigration laws. His group most recently obtained a letter from Danbury's police chief saying that, based on city attorneys' advice, local police can enforce immigration laws.

Streitz said Danbury's police chief is the first in the state to express this view and hopes others will follow.


"We want them to start putting pressure on employers and homeowners that this is illegal behavior," Streitz said, referring to the hiring of day laborers who are in the country illegally.

Danbury's police chief, Alan Baker, did not return a call for comment yesterday.
Why didn't Police Chief Baker return calls from the Stamford Advocate. Why hasn't Mayor Boughton commented on this issue. As of today, we haven't heard anything from the Mayor's office in regards to local police being able to enforce federal immigration laws.

If the police can enforce immigration laws, why did Boughton ask to have the state police enforce the immigration laws in the first place?

Call the Chief of Police (203-797-4614) or the Mayor's office (203-797-4511) and ask him to clarify the local police's role in terms of enforcing a federal law.

Is Streitz lying about the letter (it wouldn't surprise me) or does the city agree with the opinion of a hate-group?

Monday, January 30, 2006

If you're angry at Joe Lieberman today...

you should do what many in the state are doing by signing up and donating here.

Like I said before, it's one thing to vote no for Alito because it means nothing if he already had the votes to win so I'm not surprised at Lieberman and neither should you.

Could someone please ask Senator Lieberman what qualifes a person to be exterme enough to be filibustered? It seems that he thinks the views of views of an individual who WILL vote to overturn Roe v. Wade is not exterme enough to support a filibuster.

Maybe Joe should take a cue from this guy when describing Alito... or should I say "thanks Joe" for all the help you're giving to Ned Lamont's campaign. Don't worry about The Fairfield Weekly, for all you're doing for Lamont, the next lunch is on me (and I consider soup and salad A LUNCH).

In case your upset with the high cost of gasoline and heating oil

This should really get you pissed off.
Exxon Mobil Corp. posted record profits for any U.S. company on Monday — $10.71 billion for the fourth quarter and $36.13 billion for the year — as the world's biggest publicly traded oil company benefited from high oil and gas prices and demand for refined products. The results exceeded Wall Street expectations and Exxon shares rose nearly 3 percent in morning trading.

[...]

Exxon's profit for the year was also the largest annual reported net income in U.S. history, according to Howard Silverblatt, a stock market analyst for Standard & Poor's. He said the previous high was Exxon's $25.3 billion profit in 2004.

Exxon's results lifted the combined 2005 profits for the country's three largest integrated oil companies to more than $63 billion.

ConocoPhillips said last Wednesday that its fourth-quarter earnings rose 51 percent to $3.68 billion, while annual income climbed 66 percent to $13.53 billion. Two days later, Chevron Corp. said its fourth-quarter earnings rose 20 percent to $4.14 billion, while annual income jumped 6 percent to $14.1 billion.

The oil industry's stellar results renewed talk among some politicians for a windfall profit tax that would push companies to invest more in new production and refining capacity.

Sen. Babara Boxer, a California Democrat who sharply criticized oil executives appearing before Congress in November, struck again on Friday. She called on the Bush Administration and the Federal Trade Commission to "put an end to gouging," then suggested that FTC stood for "Friend to Chevron."

[...]

Quarterly revenue ballooned to $99.66 billion from $83.37 billion a year ago but came in shy of the $100.72 billion Exxon posted in the third quarter, which was the first time a U.S. public company generated more than $100 billion in sales in a single quarter.

[...]

To put that into perspective, Exxon's revenue for the year exceeded Saudi Arabia's estimated 2005 gross domestic product of $340.5 billion, according to statistics maintained by the Central Intelligence Agency.


Okay, now can any Bush-supporting conservative care to explain to me why I should not be upset with the rising cost of gasoline and heating my home while the oil companies are raking in the money by the billions?

NOTE: You would think with all of that money, Exxon would pay for their little oil spill (this is for those who aren't pissed enought yet)
It’s been nearly 17 years since the Exxon Valdez spilled 11 million gallons of crude oil along the Alaska coast in one of the country’s worst environmental disasters, and a jury’s $5 billion judgment against the company is still tied up in the courts.

Exxon Mobil Corp.’s appeal of that punishment was scheduled to be heard for the third time Friday afternoon in a federal appeals court in San Francisco.

The case stems from a 1994 decision by an Anchorage jury to award punitive damages to 34,000 fishermen and other Alaskans.

[...]

The residents claimed they were harmed when the Valdez struck a charted reef and spilled crude oil along about 1,500 miles of coastline. They alleged that the captain was drunk and that Exxon knew he had a drinking problem. The jury found Exxon and Valdez captain Joseph Hazelwood reckless in the accident.

Exxon argues it should have to pay no more than $25 million in punitive damages.

[...]

In two previous appeals, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ordered U.S. District Judge H. Russel Holland of Anchorage to reduce the judgment against Exxon, saying it was unconstitutionally excessive.

Holland begrudgingly complied in 2002, reducing it to $4 billion. Exxon appealed, and Holland was ordered to revisit the decision again. He called Exxon’s actions “reprehensible,” and set the figure at $4.5 billion plus interest.

Decisions in the 9th Circuit usually come weeks or months after the oral arguments. The appeals court has twice questioned the award, sending it back to the trial judge to reduce the fine.

Accrued interest could bring the total amount to nearly $9 billion, Oesting said.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Lt. Gen. William Odom to speak on "State of Disunion in Iraq"

Former Director, National Security Agency (Pres. Regan) Lt. Gen William E. Odom is the highest ranking retired general who is calling for an immediate withdrawl of US forces from Iraq.

He wil be speaking about the "State of Disunion in Iraq" on Tuesday, January 31 at the Parish House of the Center Church on the Green, 311 Temple Street, in New Haven.

For some interesting background information on Lt. Gen. Odom (including a great interview he did with Democracy NOW), click here.

For directions to the event, click here.

Ned Lamont Q&A from New Haven (VIDEO)

As you well know, Ned Lamont visited New Haven yesterday on his "listening tour" and fielded a number of questions from the audience ranging from his opinions on Judge Samuel Alito to his views regarding the loss of jobs in Connecticut.

The turnout to the event was quite impressive (see below) considering Lamont hasn't "officially" announced that he's challenging Lieberman yet. What was also impressive was the show of support from Democratic Town Committee members from different towns (most notably Westport and Fairfield) including DTC member Mitchell Fuchs of Fairfield who recounted a not-so-pleasent encounter with Senator Lieberman which left the audience speechless.


Observations:

Lamont is still finding his voice. You have to give the person a break considering this is his second time out of his tour but on the other hand, time is not on his side. Lamont will need to fine tune his message in the coming weeks if he is going to challenge a seasoned pro like Lieberman (who will definitely fight tooth and nail to keep his job). Lamont needs to bring his "A" game in order to challenge a seasoned pro like Lieberman (who will pull out all the tricks to take Lamont down). If Lamont finds three or four issues (besides the obvious Iraq War) to talk about in future speeches and appearances (they'll have to be issues that he can criticize Lieberman), he could connect with people and give Lieberman a serious reason for concern



One thing is for certain, Lamont has the like-ability factor won by a landslide. His honesty and integrity comes out as soon as he starts speaking and he has the ability to connect with people naturally which is not only a campaign manager's dream come true, but "a gift" when it comes to someone running for public office for the first time.

Enough of my rambling, you want to see Lamont in action so here it is.

First, thinking the event started at 10:30 and not 10:00, I arrived at the place about 15 minutes late (UGH!) so I don't have Lamont's stump speech. Actually, it's a god thing because I didn't come to hear the speech, I wanted to see how he answered questions and like I said, for his second time out, he was impressive.

Second, I'm only providing the lo-res versions of the video clips at this time. Once my hi-res files are verified at video.google, I'll provide the URLs for the clips.

If you really need the hi-res version of the clip (or if you want a hi-res version of any of the photos), just send me an email and I'll get it to you. All I ask you credit me for any images you use on your blog.

It's also better if you right click on the links below and save the files to your desktop so you an enlarge the video clip (but you can just click on it and view it in the browser also).

VIDEO CLIPS (they'll take a moment to load so be patient):

1. Ned Lamont views on Judge Alito.

2. Ned Lamont's views on how the high cost of health care contributes to job lossed in Connecticut. Comments regarding financing higher education in Connecticut.

3. Ned Lamont's concerns regarding security and terrorism including his views on The Patriot Act and warrant-less wiretapping Americans.

4. DTC member Mitchell Fuchs of Fairfield leaves the audience speechless in describing "an encounter" he had with Senator Lieberman (MUST SEE)!!!
(NOTE: There are many public officials in the state (a.k.a those important people on Democratic Town Committees) who, like Fuchs, are unhappy with Lieberman but can't publicly come out and say so because doing that would be political suicide.

5. Lamont comments further on job creation and the tax burden on small businesses.

6. Lamont comments on job outsourcing and the rising cost of health care cost to employers.

7. Lamont comments on the energy bill and the need for energy conservation (sorry for the timestamp).

To view all of my photos from the event, just click here.