Saturday, February 28, 2009

*****Defense budget set to shrink from 2010 onwards

http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/Defense-budget-set-shrink-2010/story.aspx?guid={3BEEC6F0-0A6D-426B-AD60-F3773AE47B5F}
The Obama administration's Pentagon budget request looks to be the beginning of the end for this decade's boom in defense spending, Wall Street and government-budget analysts said Friday.  "We believe that supplemental spending will decrease significantly in the out years, marking the end of the defense spending boom," said Merrill Lynch analyst Ronald Epstein, in a note to investors.

S&P 500 defense index falls after Obama's Iraq speech

http://www.star-telegram.com/business/story/1230381.html

The stocks of companies in the S&P 500 aerospace and defense index fell Friday after President Barack Obama promised to pull out all of the U.S. combat troops from Iraq by August 2010.  The S&P 500 aerospace and defense index fell 3.7 percent to 215.54. That's down more than the S&P 500, which declined 2.4 percent.



****Erasing Red Ink: Slash the Defense Budget

http://www.antiwar.com/eland/?articleid=14326
More than half of the discretionary budget is defense spending (slightly less than $700 billion per year), making it a big and deserving target for cuts.   Actually security spending – which in addition to defense spending should include the budgets of the State and Homeland Security Departments, the Veterans Administration, and the interest on the national debt that arises because of such security spending – is yet a third higher, coming in at almost $900 billion.  All of these departments should also be cut back.


Friday, February 27, 2009

****Barney Frank - importance of grassroots pressure to Mil. Budget cuts!!!

http://www.thenation.com/blogs/jstreet/412500/the_week_in_review
Frank emphasized the importance of grassroots pressure if they are going to be successful in taking on entrenched Dems.

Obama 2010 Budget to Cut Weapons Systems Development

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/1514004/obama_2010_budget_to_cut_weapons_systems.html
Other members of Congress, such as Barney Frank, have suggested that Obama's 2010 budget request for defense is too high. Barney Frank has advocated cutting ...

**Barney Frank on Military - 'Hardball with Chris Matthews' for February 26, 2009

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29428726/
One of the great things of inconsistency that I think, Chris, of people who worry about spending—they brought us the Iraq war, the single biggest addition to the deficit, and unlike some other things, it's all money that we lose.  We don't get any of it money back.

They have projected—you know, we are now—according to the Bush budget, we're going to spend billions of dollars to protect the Czech Republic from being attacked by Iran.  Now, I'm not a regular reader of the fatwas...



Global campaign for the elimination of nuclear weapons

http://www.globalzero.org/en
Join an extraordinary global campaign for the elimination of nuclear weapons: http://www.globalzero.org/sign-declaration. A growing group of leaders around the world is calling for the elimination of nuclear weapons and a majority of the global public agrees.  This is an historic window of opportunity.  With momentum already building in favor of Zero, a major show of support from people around the world could tip the balance. When it comes to nuclear weapons, one is one too many.   

******Start Closing Overseas Bases Now

http://www.antiwar.com/orig/vine.php?articleid=14318

In the midst of an economic crisis that's getting scarier by the day, it's time to ask whether the nation can really afford some 1,000 military bases overseas. For those unfamiliar with the issue, you read that number correctly. One thousand. One thousand U.S. military bases outside the 50 states and Washington, DC, representing the largest collection of bases in world history.

Officially the Pentagon counts 865 base sites, but this notoriously unreliable number omits all our bases in Iraq (likely over 100) and Afghanistan (80 and counting), among many other well-known and secretive bases.

Drilling Down on the Budget Military

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/27/us/politics/27web-weapons.html
While President Obama's budget outline requests a 4 percent increase in basic military spending, to $534 billion from $513 billion fiscal 2009, the administration has made it clear that it intends to shift some money from huge cold war-style weapons systems to smaller programs focused on fighting insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan and new threats to the nation's cybersecurity.

*****Obama’s Defense Budget Outline Spending Continues To Grow

http://www.commondreams.org/newswire/2009/02/26-2

President Obama's budget outline thus requests $664 billion in total Pentagon and war funding for fiscal year 2010. This figure does not include funding for nuclear weapons or miscellaneous non-DOD defense costs, which were approximately $23 billion in FY 2009.

"It looks like the pattern of overall growth in Pentagon spending will continue in President Obama's first budget," said Travis Sharp, military policy analyst at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation. "The annual growth rate, however, appears to be lower than was typical during the Bush years."



Thursday, February 26, 2009

Obama to deliver address on Iraq Friday

http://wire.antiwar.com/2009/02/25/obama-to-deliver-address-on-iraq-friday-2/
REUTERS: President Barack Obama will deliver an address Friday on "the way forward" in Iraq, officials said, in which he is widely expected to announce steps to begin pulling U.S. combat troops out of Iraq. "We're keeping a campaign commitment," Vice President Joe Biden told NBC television in an interview Wednesday when asked the substance of Obama's address at Camp Lejeune, a Marine Corps base in North Carolina.

Lockheed Martin Invests in Smart Grid Research and Development at Penn State University

http://www.tradingmarkets.com/.site/news/Stock%20News/2197929/
Leveraging a partnership spanning more than 30 years, this latest Lockheed Martin - Penn State collaboration will focus on Smart Grid technology. Specifically, the research will include advisory and control methods, predictive and diagnostic modeling and simulation, cyber security, and the development of a test bed for exploration, experimentation and validation of Advanced Meter Infrastructure and Smart Grid technologies.

WSJ: Lobbyists Line Up to Torpedo Speech Proposals [Oh boy, Barack's TOAST now. Let's just WATCH!]

online.wsj.com/article/SB123561083268377547.html
Industries from health care to agribusiness to mining that stand to lose under President Barack Obama's policy agenda are ramping up lobbying campaigns to derail or modify his plans. The day after Mr. Obama formally laid out his policy goals in his first address to Congress, the former chief executive of HCA Inc. unveiled a $20 million campaign to pressure Democrats to enact health-care legislation based on free-market principles.

Raptor in dogfight for its future [Awww, against US, Lockheed's got NO WORRIES!]

http://www.usatoday.com/money/industries/manufacturing/2009-02-25-lockheed-martin-raptor_N.htm
The Lockheed Martin (LMT) Fighter Demonstration Center, a few subway stops from the Pentagon and a short ride across the Potomac River from Capitol Hill, feels like a high-end auto dealership.

It's here that the giant defense contractor pitches its next-generation fighter plane, the F-22 Raptor. There's a simulator, PowerPoint slides and a video, backed by a soaring musical score, in which Air Force pilots rhapsodize about the fastest, stealthiest, most advanced dogfighter ever built.



**CFR: The Fine Print on O's Defense Spending. NEAR TERM SPIKE

http://www.cfr.org/publication/18624/fine_print_on_defense_spending.html?breadcrumb=%2F
...some feel the projected cuts may be made at a slower pace than once predicted. In fact, defense analyst James McAleese says preexisting plans approved by Congress to add thousands of troops to both the U.S. Army and Marine Corps, coupled with ongoing conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, suggests a "high probability" the new administration will push through a "significant increase in [the] 2010 DoD budget" (PDF) before pursuing cuts down the road.

Congress Should Cut Military Spending $160 Billion, Says Democrat Barney Frank [Oh boy! Frank's going to get lynched!]

http://sayanythingblog.com/readers/entry/congress_should_cut_military_spending_160_billion_says_democrat_barney_fran/
FROM THIS SITE: "this cocksucker, a chief architect of the Fannie/Freddie collapse, now wants to gut our military fighting 2 wars, with Iran and N.Korea on deck and ready to threaten everyone with nuke weapons.  markets are in a sustained sell off because it's plain US leadership is as weak a group of buffoons as the world as ever witnessed….the markets are voting NO CONFIDENCE and who can blame them?  [LET'S WATCH!]

Obama Defense Budget Pledge Stirs State Concerns [Now, let's just watch O's Crucifixion! YOU have front row seats.]

http://www.courant.com/business/hc-defensebud226.artfeb26,0,3074611.story
President Barack Obama's speech to Congress left no doubt that he's ready to cut military hardware expenses as part of his strategy for guiding the nation through economic crisis and beyond, a sobering message for Connecticut and other states with defense-heavy economies.  While offering no details, Obama pledged to "reform our defense budget so that we're not paying for Cold War-era weapons systems we don't use.

Pentagon, Lawmakers Step Up Call for Military Funding Ahead of Budget Announcement [Oh boy. LET'S WATCH BARNEY GET SHOT!]

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/first100days/2009/02/25/pentagon-lawmakers-step-military-funding-ahead-budget-announcement/
FOXNews - USA Barney Frank, D-Mass., has raised flags in recent days by calling for a 25 percent reduction in defense spending. He said Tuesday that the military could ...  Pentagon, Lawmakers Step Up Call for Military Funding Ahead of Budget Announcement

Israel launches campaign against UN nuke watchdog chief [Yes, we sheeple will just WATCH as he is slaughered by the Zions. Right?]

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1067072.html
Israel's Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) recently intensified its attacks on the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Dr. Mohamed ElBaradei. The AEC, one of the most classified bodies in Israel that is also, among other things, responsible for operating the Dimona nuclear reactor, does not often issue public statements, and usually plays down its activities.

U.S. to End Ban on Media Coverage of Returning Military Coffins

U.S. to End Ban on Media Coverage of Returning Military Coffins
Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates announced today he is lifting a 1991 ban on news coverage of the return of the remains of fallen service members to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware and will let families decide whether to allow coverage. "After receiving input from [[[my new boss!!!!]]] a number of sources, including all of the military services and the organizations representing military families, I have decided that the decision regarding media coverage of the dignified transfer process at Dover should be made by those most directly affected: on an individual basis by the families of the fallen," Gates told reporters at a briefing at the Pentagon this afternoon. "We ought not presume to make that decision in their place."

WHEN IS "NORMAL" ACTUALLY...."SICK," "PATHOLOGICAL?" Hmmmmm. TODAY.

When there is a Collapsed Elementary School full of Kids / Revolution / War / Holocaust / Meteor Attack /. Rape / Mass Murder / Mass Starvation... going on around you.  Then, "being," or "living - "Normal," "Balanced," "Peaceful," "Disarming,"  "Fun..." - are Truly: SICK, MAL-ADAPTIVE, MURDEROUS, PATHOLOGICAL, INSANE.....
WHEN IS "NORMAL" ACTUALLY...."SICK," "PATHOLOGICAL...?"  Hmmmmm. TODAY. RIGHT NOW.

BOOKMARK THIS SITE: Today With President Barack Obama


*****THE FINAL AMERIAN REVOLUTION HAS BEGUN. DO WE LEAVE PRES. OBAMA TO FIGHT BY HIMSELF? GOD DAMN US IF WE DO.

I REPEAT, GOD DAMN US TO HELL IF WE LEAVE PRES. OBAMA ON THE BATTLE FIELD BY HIMSELF TO FIGHT THIS WAR.  GOD DAMN US IF WE DON'T PUT IT ALL ON THE LINE, NOW - LIFE, LIMB, HONOR, RESPECTABILITY, TREASURE....

Friends, my head is spinning, isn't yours? OMG!!!!!!!!!!!  In no particular order:
  1. The Pres is planning to use the Repug strategy in reverse - BANKRUPT THE MILITARY, BIG OIL, BIG COAL, THE RICH to return the country to the masses!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  FOR THE FIRST TIME!!!!!!!!!
  2. For the first time in the history of this country WE HAVE A PRES THAT IS THE PRES OF THE PEOPLE.  See that magnificent little girl in the box Tues night with Michelle, who will not "quit."
  3. Pres is proposing a military procurement guy THAT IS AGAINST COLD WAR WEAPONS!!!!!!!!!!
  4. Pres is shutting YUCCA MTN / THE NUC INDUSTRY!!!!!
  5. Pres is PUSHING THE END OF NUC STOCKPILES WITH RUSSIA.
  6. Pres is pushing HEALTH CARE FOR US, FOR THE MASSES, FOR THE POOR.
  7. Pres is pushing  EQUAL EDUCATION FOR ALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  8. Pres is pushing  A LEVEL FINANCIAL PLAYING FIELD, DEFEATING THE STRANGLEHOLD OF THE RICH.
  9. ETC.
  10. ETC.
  11. ETC.
    THIS IS NOTHING SHORT OF THE TRUE, REAL AMERICAN, DEMOCRATIC, WORLD'S PEOPLE REVOLUTION  !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

GOD DAMN US TO HELL IF WE LEAVE PRES. OBAMA ON THE HILL BY HIMSELF TO FIGHT THIS WAR.

Costly US weapons face budget cuts under Obama

http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20090226/pl_afp/usmilitaryobama
Hi-tech fighter aircraft, new warships and missile defense projects are all potential targets for big cuts in the US defense budget, as the American military faces a new era of limits under President Barack Obama.

*****Chas Freeman for NIC: Lots at Stake [and you will DO what?]

http://www.thenation.com/blogs/dreyfuss/411714?rel=hp_picks
If the campaign by the neocons, friends of the Israeli far right, and their allies against Freeman succeeds, it will have enormous repercussions. If the White House caves in to their pressure, it will signal that President Obama's even-handedness in the Arab-Israeli dispute can't be trusted. Because if Obama can't defend his own appointee against criticism from a discredited, fringe movement like the neoconservatives, how can the Arabs expect Obama to be able to stand up to Israel's next prime minister, Bibi Netanyahu?

***** "THIS IS HOW THE VIETNAM WAR ESCALATED."

http://www.antiwar.com/solomon/?articleid=14310
In his first speech to Congress, the new president threw down a 90-month-old gauntlet, reaffirming the notion that committing to war halfway around the world – in Afghanistan and now in Pakistan too – will make Americans safer. With drumrolls like that, the mission could outlive all of us. 
And so, a colossal and fateful blunder, made by a very smart leader, arguably our best and brightest, is careening forward with the help of silence that defers all too readily to power. This is how the war in Vietnam escalated, while individuals and groups muted their voices. Many people will pay with their lives.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Barney Frank to Obama: Cut Military Spending [He's DEAD without YOUR support.]

http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2009/02/barney-frank-obama-cut-military-spending
MOTHER JONES:

Representative Barney Frank is one of the most powerful Democrats in the House of Representatives. As chairman of the Financial Services Committee, he's overseeing the spending of hundreds of billions of dollars to bailout Wall Street and stave off the mortgage crisis. The White House needs him, and he's been a dependable ally so far. Now he's leaning on President Barack Obama to cut the Pentagon budget.On Tuesday, two days before Obama presents a proposed budget to Congress, Frank (D-Mass.) and other House Democrats called on the Obama administration to reduce military spending, setting up a potential clash between House liberals and the White House. At a White House summit on fiscal responsibility the day before, Obama had cast doubt on the future of an $11.2 billion project to upgrade the fleet of presidential helicopters. But Obama has shown no indication that he plans to reduce, or even freeze, overall defense spending, which will be around $650 billion this fiscal year.


****Defense budget under tighter scrutiny

http://thehill.com/business--lobby/defense-budget-under-tighter-scrutiny-2009-02-24.html
THE HILL: Lawmakers in the Senate and House are pushing initiatives to curb — and in some cases drastically reduce — defense spending, as the tough economic climate brings increased scrutiny to the massive Pentagon budget. Sens. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) on Tuesday introduced a bill seeking to reform the way the Pentagon buys weapons systems. The ultimate goal of the bill is to rein in the ballooning costs of high-tech weapons and, eventually, to establish fixed-price contracts for most weapons systems, according to Levin.

******Congress Should Cut Military Spending, Says Democrat Barney Frank [and YOU will do what?]

http://www.cnsnews.com/public/content/article.aspx?RsrcID=44067
CSN NEWS: Congress should cut U.S. military spending by $160 billion, Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, proposed at a press conference Tuesday.That same day, however, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), who controls the House floor schedule, distanced himself and the majority leadership from Frank's proposal -- and both the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Committee on Armed Services declined to endorse Frank's plan.  "It's absurd to talk about reducing the deficit while giving a pass to the military budget," Frank told reporters. "We can reduce military spending without in any way undercutting our national security."

Clinton warns Israel over delays in Gaza aid

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1066821.html
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has relayed messages to Israel in the past week expressing anger at obstacles Israel is placing to the delivery of humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip. A leading political source in Jerusalem noted that senior Clinton aides have made it clear that the matter will be central to Clinton's planned visit to Israel next Tuesday.

***Barney Frank Gets the Ball Rolling

http://militarybudgetcutsnow.blogspot.com/2009/02/barney-frank-gets-ball-rolling.html
MBCN blog: Congressman Frank was joined by about 75 activists, and 4 of his colleagues: Rep. Barbara Lee, new Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus; Rep. Lynn Woolsey, current Co-Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus; Rep. Dennis Kucinich; and Rep. Keith Ellison. All 5 spoke briefly, and pointed out how important this effort was, both to provide needed funding for health care and alternative energy initiatives, and to create a safer world.

Three set themselves on fire in central Beijing

[I was horribly appalled as a spoiled, stupid, western, "ruling class" youth at the self-immolation of the Buddhist monks to end the Vietnam War.  I thought they were just plain wrong.  Dr. MLK on the other hand, was finally awakened by them to his full Humanity, and the speech at Riverside Baptist that got him murdered exactly a year later to the day, DEMANDING an end to the Vietnam Genocide was inspired by those same expressions of ultimate human outcry to Humanity.      "THERE COMES A TIME, when silence is betrayal," MLK.  SL]
http://www.reuters.com/article/latestCrisis/idUSPEK66609
Three people set themselves on fire in the heart of downtown Beijing on Wednesday, state media and a witness said, and city police said they appeared to have come to the capital to voice "personal complaints".  The trio set off the blaze in their car just before 3 p.m. (0700 GMT) at the intersection of the city's main Chang'an thoroughfare and high-end shopping street, Wangfujing.  [I don't know if today's article was one of those Times. SL]


****** Environment Climate change timetable slips as Obama backtracks Copenhagen deadline

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/feb/24/barackobama-climatechange
GUARDIAN:  Campaign pledge to quickly pass laws to cut emissions faltering in the first weeks of his presidency.Barack Obama has been forced to slow down early legislation to reduce the CO² emissions that cause global warming, a key green objective of his presidency.Officials conceded that Congress is unlikely to pass such legislation by the end of 2009, a delay that could hurt efforts to reach a global treaty at the climate change conference in Copenhagen this December...Nancy Sutley, the chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, said.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

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...
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Environmentalists fight planned nuclear plant. TX

http://www.bizjournals.com/sanantonio/stories/2009/02/23/daily3.html
BIZJOURNALS:

Environmental groups throughout Texas are lining up to oppose the South Texas Nuclear Operating Co.'s plans to build two additional reactors at its plant near Bay City, Texas.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has filed notice in the Federal Register giving citizens the ability to challenge the proposed reactors. Groups have 60 days to oppose the proposed expansion of the nuclear power plant. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission must still grant a license to build the new reactors.


*****Harvard professor named to Pentagon post Weapons-buyer appointee has criticized stockpile

http://www.boston.com/news/education/higher/articles/2009/02/24/harvard_professor_named_to_pentagon_post/
BOSTON GLOBE: President Obama nominated yesterday Harvard professor Ashton B. Carter, a leading authority on arms control and a longtime academic, to serve as the Pentagon's chief weapons buyer.The choice of Carter to run the office that oversees hundreds of billions of dollars for new weapons and research - and is the focus of intense lobbying by defense firms, retired generals, and members of Congress - sparked concern within the defense industry and parts of the Pentagon bureaucracy when it was first rumored last month.But that may be exactly what Obama and Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates wanted.

A superb method to reduce the deficit is to slash military spending

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/behind-the-numbers/2009/02/deficit_concern_jumps_among_gop.html?hpid=topnews
WASH POST: A superb method to reduce the deficit is to slash military spending by 10% each year for the next four years and to close military bases in Republican ...

Healthcare Cuts Into Pentagon Spending Pie

http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/generic/story_generic.jsp?channel=aerospacedaily&id=news/HEALTH022309.xml&headline=Healthcare%20Cuts%20Into%20Pentagon%20Spending%20Pie
AVIATION WEEK: "The cost of military healthcare increased 144 percent between 2001 and 2008, which is a higher rate of increase than most other defense spending categories ...

Iran's First Nuclear Power Plant Set for Tests Before Launch

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/02/22/AR2009022201127.html
WP: "God willing, this will be an important step towards the full launch of the Bushehr nuclear power plant," Mohsen Delaviz, a spokesman for the Atomic Energy ...

Guadeloupe Strikes: A Warning to Obama?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-naiman/guadeloupe-strikes-a-warn_b_168960.html 
HUFF POST: On February 12, Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair told Congress that the global economic crisis was the most serious security challenge facing the United States and that it could topple governments and trigger waves of refugees, the Los Angeles Times reported.A week later, the French government was sending police reinforcements to the Caribbean island of Guadeloupe after a month of strikes and protests over low pay and high prices followed by clashes between police and protesters.

Have literally gone "blind" putting up >>> ****** Yesterday's Fiscal Summit. URGENT OPPORTUNITY.

I can't make out what I'm typing - working round the clock to get this crucial Playlist up for you.  Hence, today's posts are light.  More tomorrow.

Subject: ****** Yesterday's Fiscal Summit. URGENT OPPORTUNITY.

Watch this Playlist top to bottom.

SHARE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=67C4B4C376F39D5E
http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=67C4B4C376F39D5E
http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=67C4B4C376F39D5E
http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=67C4B4C376F39D5E

Never
will you get a better:

*  Leadership course
*  Magnificent display of leadership
*  Education in democracy
*  Image of what a President looks like, MUST look like

Patriotic necessity.





****** Yesterday's Fiscal Summit. URGENT OPPORTUNITY.

Watch this Playlist top to bottom.

SHARE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=67C4B4C376F39D5E
http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=67C4B4C376F39D5E
http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=67C4B4C376F39D5E
http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=67C4B4C376F39D5E

Never
will you get a better:

*  Leadership course
*  Magnificent display of leadership
*  Education in democracy
*  Image of what a President looks like, MUST look like

Patriotic necessity.




Monday, February 23, 2009

Israel trying hard to have say in any US talks with Iran - experts say. [And the "Peace" "activists?]

http://www.gulfnews.com/region/Middle_East/10288933.html
GULFNEWS: With increasing signs of a potential American-Iranian direct dialogue, Tehran and Tel Aviv seem to be vying with each other to lay down their own roadmap for the talks.

The Iranian goal is to have an acknowledged say in regional affairs, while Israel aims to stay as the only strategic ally of Washington in the Middle East, analysts and experts say.


"The helicopter I have now seems perfectly adequate to me," Obama said. [The Repugs are right - what a fraud!]

http://www.reuters.com/article/politicsNews/idUSTRE51M6UM20090223
REUTERS: Democratic chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Carl Levin, said legislation aimed at preventing chronic cost overruns in many Pentagon weapons programs would be introduced this week."It will create a presumption that a (weapons) system will not continue" if there is a cost overrun, Levin told a gathering at the White House looking at government procurement contracts."It breaks that barrier. That defense system will not be built," Levin said. "Enforcement teeth will be restored in a bill that we will be introducing today or tomorrow."

WP POLL: Obama leads the Republicans in Congress by 61-26 percent in trust. [WILL WE SUPPORT THE QB!?!!??!!?]

http://abcnews.go.com/PollingUnit/Politics/story?id=6939993&page=1
WP/ABC: Obama clearly holds the upper hand, both in overall approval and on the dominant issue of the day. He leads the Republicans in Congress by 61-26 percent in trust to handle the economy, the biggest such lead for a president in ABC News/Washington Post polls since late 1991. (Bill Clinton came close at the start of his first term.)
 [WILL WE SUPPORT THE QB!?!!??!!?  If we do, it will be the first time in history.]

"Dear [Quarterback] Obama": The President Reads 10 Letters a Day from the Public, With Policy Ramifications

[Best Quarterback (we're the so-far-AWOL team) in the history of the world. Our last, best hope. Hold me accountable on that. Start L.]

http://blogs.abcnews.com/politicalpunch/2009/02/dear-president.html
ABCNEWS: The letter to President Obama came from a woman in Arizona whose husband lost his job. He was able to find work, but the new gig came with one-third the pay; the family is struggling to make their mortgage payments....

Yet to see combat, stealth fighter in budget war

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5iNsmvNN-7CM17fTXtrLdYD_5fEhQD96G59K03
AP: You don't necessarily buy a Ferrari.At $140 million a pop, the F-22 is the most expensive fighter ever built. And even before seeing combat, it might fall prey to President Barack Obama's pen.In one of the new president's first major decisions on U.S. defense spending, future funding for the radar-evading stealth fighter will soon be on the block, affecting nearly 100,000 jobs spread across virtually every state in the U.S. and impacting military planning for decades to come.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

NYT: Iran May Achieve Capability to Make A Nuclear Weapon in 2009

http://www.nytimes.com/cfr/world/slot3_20090220.html
NYT: Iran continues to move forward on developing its nuclear capabilities, and it is close to having what we would call a 'nuclear breakout capability.' That's a problem because once Iran reaches that state then it could make a decision to get nuclear weapons pretty rapidly. In as quickly as a few months, Iran would be able to have enough weapons-grade uranium for nuclear weapons. 

4 million Americans lost health insurance since recession began

http://www.bizjournals.com/albany/stories/2009/02/16/daily58.html
BUSINESS REVIEW: An estimated 4 million Americans have lost their health insurance since the recession began, and as many as 14,000 people could be losing their health coverage every day, according to a report by liberal think tank Center for American Progress' Action Fund.

******Obama Vs. Petraeus

>>>LISTEN HERE: http://antiwar.com/radio/2009/02/19/gareth-porter-49/ !!!!!!!
ANTIWAR / HORTEN / PORTER: Gareth Porter, independent researcher and journalist, discusses the continuing struggle over control of the Iraq war narrative, the influence of retired general Jack Keane on the Bush Administration's Iraq policy, the surprising strength and stability of the Iraqi government and why General Petraeus's proposal for an extended Iraq withdrawal is a ploy get more time to scuttle the SOFA agreement.

US okays Hamas-Fatah government

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1233304839598&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull
JPOST: The Obama administration has given the Palestinian Authority a "green light" to talk to Hamas about forming a Palestinian unity government, a PA official in Ramallah said over the weekend. The official said that Washington had also given Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak the go-ahead to resume his efforts to achieve reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah. "The new administration has a different policy than that of [former US president] George W. Bush," the official told The Jerusalem Post.

Ridge: We were wrong to torture

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/7903516.stm

BBC: America's first homeland security secretary has accepted some criticisms of the US "war on terror" made in a recent report by legal experts.

Tom Ridge told the BBC that the report's attacks on extended detention and torture were justified.



****Amazing Appointment — Chas Freeman as NIC Chairman

http://www.antiwar.com/blog/2009/02/20/amazing-appointment-%E2%80%94-chas-freeman-as-nic-chairman/
It appears that Chas Freeman has been appointed chairman of the National Intelligence Council (NIC), the body that is charged by the Director of National Intelligence (DNI)...To me, this is a stunning appointment. There are very few former senior diplomats as experienced and geographically well-rounded (just look at this bio here), knowledgeable, entertaining (in a mordant sort of way), accessible (until now at least), and verbally artful as Freeman...“In retrospect, Al Qaeda has played us with the finesse of a matador exhausting a great bull by guiding it into unproductive lunges at the void behind his cape. By invading Iraq, we transformed an intervention in Afghanistan most Muslims had supported into what looks to them like a wider war against Islam. We destroyed the Iraqi state and catalyzed anarchy, sectarian violence, terrorism, and civil war in that country.

Iran asked for nuclear deal as a condition stop attacks in Iraq

http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20090221/wl_mideast_afp/britainiraniraqusmilitaryunrestdiplomacy
BBC: Iran
offered to stop attacking troops in Iraq if the West dropped opposition to its nuclear programme, a top British official said in comments to be broadcast Saturday. Sir John Sawers, Britain's current ambassador to the United Nations, told the BBC that Iranian officials had privately admitted their role in supporting insurgents' roadside bomb attacks on British and US troops.

Even military split over Iraq pullout

http://wire.antiwar.com/2009/02/21/analysis-even-military-split-over-iraq-pullout-2/
ANTIWAR: Obama's top generals in Baghdad are pressing for an elongated timetable, while some influential senior advisers inside the Pentagon are more amenable to a quicker pullout.

**Iran's Détente Gesture to Obama?

http://www.antiwar.com/orig/sahimi.php?articleid=14290
ANTIWAR: The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) just released its latest report on Iran's nuclear program. The report states that all of Iran's nuclear materials, research, and development are under the Agency's containment and surveillance, and all the nuclear materials are safeguarded. The Agency also reported that there has been no divergence of nuclear material, in line with Iran's repeated contention that its nuclear program is peaceful.

****Ray McGovern: US attempt to trap the USSR in 1979 is at root of current situation in Afghanistan & CURRENT ANALYSIS.

VIDEO HERE >>>> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UKRS2A_2BCM
Ray McGovern: US attempt to trap the USSR in 1979 is at root of current situation in Afghanistan

****Economist Nicholas Stern - Dire Climate Change Scenario: Mass Migrations, Extended World War

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/02/21/lord-nicholas-stern-paint_n_168865.html
HUFF POST: If we don't deal with climate change decisively, "what we're talking about then is extended world war," the eminent economist said... "Somehow we have to explain to people just how worrying that is," the British economic thinker said.  SEE ALSO: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/feb/11/stern-climate-change  ; http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn16580-400-billion-the-price-of-our-future.html

***FDR’s New Deal was an economic failure . Military spending could bring us out of the recession now.

http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/8677
CANADA FREE PRESS: The Second World War brought us out of the Depression.  Military spending could bring us out of the recession now...Barack Obama is trying to end a recession and spark a recovery by the highly dubious means of shoveling vast amounts of federal dollars into domestic spending.  He is consciously trying to mimic FDR and the New Deal.  There is only one problem with this:  FDR's New Deal was an economic failure.

Gates Sees Need for at Least $83 Billion More in 2009 for Wars

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601082&sid=av.r.Cs8ohak&refer=canada
BLOOMBERG: The $83 billion is $13.3 billion more than Defense Secretary Robert Gates said in late December was needed. That estimate of $69.7 billion didn't include the cost of sending more troops to Afghanistan, he said then.

**Missile defense must not be idled

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/opinion/s_612724.html

PITTSBURGH TRIB: •Q: Why is it so important that this missile-defense installation go in?

•A: There are obviously several reasons, but let's start with the one that I think is most immediate, which is the political one: That is that the United States and Poland and the Czech Republic have all arrived at the conclusion that it is important for them on a bilateral basis to reinforce the basic alliance commitments that are present in the NATO structure and that anything that could be seen as breaking those bonds, either in the NATO context or in the bilateral context, would be very, very damaging and I think would invite more aggressive behavior on the part of Russia and other states.