Saturday, September 30, 2006 ~ With the final passage through Congress of the detainee treatment bill, President Bush achieved a signal victory Friday, shoring up with legislation his determined campaign against terrorism in the face of challenges from critics and the courts.
Rather than reining in the formidable presidential powers that Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney have asserted since Sept. 11, 2001, the law gives some of those powers a solid statutory foundation. In effect it allows the president to identify enemies, imprison them indefinitely and interrogate them – albeit with a ban on the harshest treatment – beyond the reach of the full court reviews traditionally afforded criminal defendants and ordinary prisoners.
Candidate's Lone Issue is that She Had Sex With Packers Football Team
A BUZZFLASH NEWS ANALYSIS
Some stories just write themselves. Especially when Republicans are involved. The newest is Sandy Sullivan, the 65-year-old Republican nominee for secretary of state in Wisconsin. With no political experience, her sole claim to fame rests on her 2004 memoir titled "Green Bay Love Stories and Other Affairs," in which she recalls an allegedly bountiful sexual history with members of the Packers football team during the '60s.
Sullivan's web site features no other policy position or agenda. "For this office, there are no issues," she says. . .
Shield of Invincibility
News of the Weird has mentioned several times those "yogic fliers" (who sit cross-legged and, by Transcendental Meditation, "fly" by levitating their posteriors). In July, two weeks after Israel began its retaliatory attack on Hezbollah, a former Israeli army colonel, Reuven Zelinkovsky, was critical, alleging that a squadron of yogic fliers could provide a "shield of invincibility" around the country, just as effective as a military campaign. TM experts use the formula of the square root of 1 percent of a country's population as the critical mass of fliers necessary to affect the national spiritual consciousness (for Israel, 265 fliers). [Agence France-Presse, 7-26-06]
Rummy On Board Of Company That Sold Nukes To North Korea
Rumsfeld was a non-executive director of ABB, a European engineering giant based in Zurich, when it won a $200m contract to provide the design and key components for the reactors. The current defense secretary sat on the board from 1990 to 2001, earning $190,000 a year.
Rumsfeld has never acknowledged that he knew the company was competing for the nuclear contract. In response to questions about his role in the reactor deal, former Pentagon spokeswoman Victoria Clarke told Newsweek in February 2003 that “there was no vote on this” and that her boss “does not recall it being brought before the board at any time.” But an investigation by Fortune magazine revealed that Rumsfeld probably did know.
“Hotel Minibar” Keys Open Diebold Voting Machines
Like other computer scientists who have studied Diebold voting machines, we were surprised at the apparent carelessness of Diebold’s security design. It can be hard to convey this to non-experts, because the examples are technical. To security practitioners, the use of a fixed, unchangeable encryption key and the blind acceptance of every software update offered on removable storage are rookie mistakes; but non-experts have trouble appreciating this. Here is an example that anybody, expert or not, can appreciate: A little research revealed that the exact same key is used widely in office furniture, electronic equipment, jukeboxes, and hotel minibars.
Rest In Peace, Fourth Estate
By Nora Boustany
Washington Post Foreign Service
Tuesday, October 24, 2006 ~ Although it ranked 17th on the first list, published in 2002, the United States now stands at 53, having fallen nine places since last year.
Pentagon Spies on Anti-War Groups
The Pentagon kept tabs on nonviolent protesters of the Iraq war – including a Broward County group that planned a protest for the annual Fort Lauderdale Air and Sea Show – by collecting information and storing it in a military antiterrorism database, according to documents released today by the American Civil Liberties Union.
The documents, which the ACLU posted today at its website, were obtained from the Department of Defense under the federal Freedom of Information Act, the civil-liberties group said.
The documents indicate that the Miami-Dade Police Department sent information to the Pentagon in April 2005, reporting on a planned protest by the Broward Anti-War Coalition.
And the ironies just keep rollin’ along.
Even More Ironies