Saturday, April 4, 2009

I Kissed A Girl And I liked It

It is ok to be straight.

But can you dig it that Iowa's Supreme Court maxed out on neutrality?!

I mean, the supreme courts of various states have been dancing around and around the gay marriage and gay civil relationship floor haven't they?

I see that dancing about as a scary indicator that politics is creeping into American jurisprudence from yet one more angle.

The scary part is that politics is the most dangerous poison known to jurisprudence.

We (me and my blogging buddies and a girl I kissed) take our hats off to that little old supreme court that could.

Oh yeah ... and that ...

Friday, April 3, 2009

Stevens To Be Senator Before Franken?

We have been jabbing at Brad Blog for its wrong headed position on the Franken / Coleman election in Minnesota.

It was clearly wrong for Brad Blog, an "EI blogging center", to advocate that all states should use the Minnesota model for elections.

That would be a catastrophe like getting AIDS to wipe out AIDS.

We have been jabbing at Attorney General Holder for making a judicial decision he should have left to the courts.

Holder effectively pardoned Ted Stevens after that senator had been convicted by a jury for 7 felonies associated with political corruption. After all, Eric was once a judge you know.

Now the state of Alaska, where Stevens can see the Senate from his house, is all a twitter and is freaking out for a general election.

Stevens lost by less than 4,000 votes under the felony cloud, so it is more than likely he would win re-election.

That means if Senator Cornyn has his way, Alaska has its way, and Eric Holder has his way, the convicted Ted Stevens will be a senator before Al Franken is a senator.

Things are getting curiouser and curiouser over here in the empire Barak, so "get back Jo Jo, get back Loretta".

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Everybody's Got A Holder Heart

"... lay down your money and you play your part" (Springsteen).

Eric Holder is this week's hero of Orin Hatch and the House republicans.

He did what all prosecutors do and gave a new trial to a criminal convicted by a duly constituted jury.

There was no special treatment rarely afforded to the rich, powerful, and famous.

Yes, in the final analysis that convicted criminal was treated exactly like middle class and poor convicted criminals are.

NOT !!!

What Holder actually did was give Senator Ted "Bridge To Nowhere" Stevens very special, very rare, and very quid pro quo treatment.

Eric will be rewarded.

Here is a quote from a Yale Law Journal article that describes what really happens to the middle class and poor who prosecutors mistreat with what are called "Brady violations" of their rights:
... when suppressed evidence does come to light, reviewing courts usually deem suppressions "harmless" and uphold the convictions ... Thus, not only are defendants' rights rarely vindicated, but also the government rarely suffers a serious penalty for its misconduct.
(Yale Law Journal, emphasis added). The rarity generally happens to the privileged few who can hire big gun lawyers, and who are not from the middle class or the poor.

Thus, Holder has worked this baby so that he gets the best of both propaganda worlds.

Holder is seen as a good guy by the republicans, and to the remainder of the populace who do not know the reality involved here, this will be seen as part of the new "bipartisan" world of American politics.

We have lamented the fact that what we rejected in the election is creeping into the Obama administration.

This "all's well that ends well" doublespeak does not bode well for future prosecutions of Bush II crimes, unless it is a quid pro quo of a different sort. I mean, was the Seigelman-Minor case a wonderful prosecution or just full of wonder?

If you get my drift.

We will know by the end of this year for sure.

Alaska is outraged. They want a special election right away. They want Stevens back in the US Senate. Stevens lost by only about 4,000 votes even with the 7 felony convictions. Perhaps Holder will reap what he has sown.

The next post in this series is here.

"Blame Game" - a.k.a. The AIG Truth

The doublespeak used lately, when someone wants the truth covered up, is to call the proceeding "the blame game".

Even though that is what the third part of our government, the Judicial Branch, commonly called "the Courts", do each and every day.

That is, if they are to obey our US Constitution.

Yes, when a crime against the people is committed we do the "blame game" as the republicans in the House now want to call it.

But the better term and the traditional term for it is "justice".

It is high time for the robber barons talk with a jury about the AIG "problem

The republicans do not want Maurice "Hank" Greenberg, past CEO of AIG for 35 years up until about 2005, to testify.

That tells me immediately they do not want him to expose and share the truth.

Greenberg submitted a written statement or "prepared testimony" in 2008.

It reveals that his successors are the ones actually responsible for AIG’s recent demise.

He said, among other things, that:
“When I left AIG, the company operated in 130 countries and employed approximately 92,000 people,” Greenberg said.”Today, the company we built up over almost four decades has been virtually destroyed.”

Greenberg said that AIG “wrote as many credit default swaps … in the nine months following my departure as it had written in the entire previous seven years combined. Moreover, “unlike what had been true during my tenure, the majority of the credit default swaps that AIGFP wrote in the nine months after I retired were reportedly exposed to subprime mortgages.”
(House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, PDF 10/7/08). I find this to be entirely believable, and that a protege of Michael Milken, one Joseph Cassano, is the place to focus the "blame game".

Cassano's mentor, the fraudster who went to federal prison after "earning" the title "the junk bond king", taught him what he applied at AIG after Greenberg was forced out of office. Yes, forced out under questionable pretences so that the robber baron operatives could savage AIG.

We exposed and set this out here, here, and here, and we complimented ABC news for covering the same focal point.

Yes the most likely source of the financial catastrophe is obvious but so far no one has the courage to expose it completely.

The lackey House republican minions, clearly on the robber baron payroll, are whining that these robber barons need a tax cut not justice.

Knowing - The Movie

Yesterday I checked out the movie Knowing staring Nicolas Cage.

The powers that be, the critics, only give it a "C", but the people give it a "B".

I give it a very good.

At the ticket stand it is still #3 in box office income after two weeks. It was released March 20th.

I liked it because it deals with subjects we discussed here, here, and here recently.

As it ends up, the basic science in the articles and in the movie are extremely up to date. In fact, more up to date than the textbooks that are being thrown out and re-written as we speak.

The only part of the movie not yet a part of the textbooks is the subject matter of a SETI post, which I hope to get to later.

See the movie if the subject matter is to your liking.

NASA helped finance a report that shows our nation could be set back 100 years by solar activity expected to peak in 2012.

I don't subscribe to the 2012 date. They picked it because of mathematical projections, but the solar cycle related to the report is not consistent in the sense that it is not like clockwork. That cycle averages 11 years, but it varies to as high as 14 years and as low as 9 years.

Right now we are at about a 100 year low and quiet as to solar activity of the destructive potential type. For things to change in a short 3 year span of time (2009-2012) would be "out of the box", and not within normal solar activity variation parameters.

Therefore I think we have more time than 3 years to fix the power grid. As we are "greening the power grid" and otherwise improving the power grid we must take the opportunity to make it resistant to solar flare ups too.

Making it resistant to solar outbursts during the upcoming "smart grid" upgrade would save tons of money and perhaps our civilized condition.

Just to give an idea of the magnitude of the subject matter, here is an excerpt from one of the links above:
IT IS midnight on 22 September 2012 and the skies above Manhattan are filled with a flickering curtain of colourful light. Few New Yorkers have seen the aurora this far south but their fascination is short-lived. Within a few seconds, electric bulbs dim and flicker, then become unusually bright for a fleeting moment. Then all the lights in the state go out. Within 90 seconds, the entire eastern half of the US is without power.

A year later and millions of Americans are dead and the nation's infrastructure lies in tatters. The World Bank declares America a developing nation. Europe, Scandinavia, China and Japan are also struggling to recover from the same fateful event - a violent storm, 150 million kilometres away on the surface of the sun.

It sounds ridiculous. Surely the sun couldn't create so profound a disaster on Earth. Yet an extraordinary report funded by NASA and issued by the US National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in January this year claims it could do just that.
(New Scientist, emphasis added). An article at Space adds more insight into why we need to fix the grid.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Why is It The Busiest Tax Court?

We recently pointed out that the landscape of US tax law is a murky place. Now we want to point out that the Federal District Court offers a jury trial by one's peers. But it is a place where only the wealthy, along with their expensive lawyers, tend to venture.

For the rest of us, the US Tax Court does from 85% to 95% of the tax cases, depending on the year.

The number of cases filed in The Tax Court, after 1999, has grown consistently:
# filed .......... year

31,450 .......... 2008
30,442 .......... 2007
26,993 .......... 2006
24,801 .......... 2005
24,931 .......... 2004
22,451 .......... 2003
20,291 .......... 2002
14,649 .......... 2001
13,545 .......... 2000
One wonders why, when a taxpayer's chances of winning in that court are extremely slim. Some reports show a 7 - 3, or even an 8 - 2 ratio (IRS wins 8 out of 10 cases, taxpayers win 2 out of 10 cases) in that court:
... an examination of raw numbers shows ... the taxpayer doing better in the general jurisdiction district court than in the specialized tax court. Some studies show that the taxpayer wins only 5% of the time in tax court as compared to 20% to 30% of taxpayers winning in the district court, with other studies acknowledging at least a 20% percent differential (Geier 1991. p. 998). The data used for this study show a 12% differential, with taxpayers winning 20% of the time in tax court and 32% of the time in the district court. These differential rates have led some scholars to argue that the tax court is ... biased in favor of the [IRS] ... Kroll 1996 ...
(Fed. Dist. Ct. vs Tax Court, PDF). My reading of the published cases over the past 10 years is not so promising, and I would say that it is more like 9 - 1. That is, IRS wins 9 out of 10 cases in the Tax Court.

But that ratio could be because the government needs money more at some times than it does at other times.

Which could mean that the pressure which deficits put on IRS and the Tax Court causes variation in decisions for taxpayers from time to time.

The US Tax Court is the court for the poor and middle class, and the US District Court is for the well to do:
Of course, litigating in the tax court is not the only option for the taxpayer. The major alternative to the tax court is the United States District Court, the court of general trial jurisdiction in the federal system. To sue in this court, the taxpayer must pay the disputed tax, and then sue for a refund in the United States Federal District Court ... The taxpayer files the claim, and the case is tried in the taxpayer’s local district. The taxpayer can, and usually does, request a jury trial. Decisions of these courts can be appealed to the circuit within which the court is located.
(ibid, emphasis added). The poor and middle class who can't afford a lawyer and who can't afford to pay the tax out front, then ask for it back in a District Court, must go to the tax court.

Once there most often they try to win pro se (representing themselves without a lawyer).

The middle class and the poor who go to the Tax Court can't have a jury decision. Instead they must rely on the Tax Court judges. The very Tax Court judges whom the scholars have said are biased in favour of the IRS:
These differential rates have led some scholars to argue that the tax court is ... biased in favor of the agency (Kroll 1996; but see Maule 1999). One scholar notes it is this potential for bias that has led Congress often to resist creating other specialized courts (Baum 1990). While most scholarship has failed to develop a coherent theory for why such bias exists, posited reasons include such factors as ideology, institutional design and structure, prior IRS work experience, the type of litigant, attorney representation, and even social and personal characteristics of the judge.
(ibid, emphasis added). Yesterday on the floor of the House of Representatives one of the Carolina representatives said that there was a surge in the increase of Boston Tea Party gatherings in his area.

He went on to say that taxpayers do not like it when their money, earned from hard work done before their shower, is taken from them and given to the banksters who work after their shower.

Why is that not surprising?

The answer to "why all the filings in the Tax Court?" is desperation. Both the government and the people are desperate for money.

Which has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that the tripling of tax cases in the tax court happened in the same years (2000-2008) that the Bush II regime ruled the roost (wink, wink).

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

What Was Rejected In The Election

We recently talked about the first shots fired in the internecine wars and in the currency wars.

Now lets put those two together and lets discuss a nexus between them.

But first things first.

In the first article the critical issue of the campaign was mentioned, which was the fact that it was a rejection election. The people rejected something.

That subject is all important to understanding what went down, so in the article we answered the question by saying that it was the Bush II status quo mentality and politics that was rejected.

The Bush II regime's despotic ideology does not sit well with Americans, and in fact it does not sit well with humane people across the globe. Not surprisingly then, it was soundly rejected.

Understanding and remembering that factor is equally important to understanding what will go down in various circumstances during the first term of the Obama Administration.

We already see the Obama Administration doing some knee jerk reactions by erroneously embracing some of the ideology that was rejected.

It was pointed out that in the recent internecine fighting within the administration, David Axelrod's closeness to the heartbeat of Americans and his counsel based upon that closeness was rejected by the president.

In place of it the cold bankster ideology of Geitner and his ilk drew Obama closer toward the very ideology that had just been rejected in the election.

Since it will be extremely difficult to change course of the titanic ship of state, now, this error will be with him and it will haunt him.

That error might not have been fatal in and of itself, but what will be fatal to his political popularity and future is the embracing the Bush II ghoulish philosophies of brutality and dishonesty.

If Obama continues to try to deny and ignore the Bush II regime's war crime mentality, which Cheney is still touting and rubbing in America's face, it will be politically fatal to Obama.

The winds of change will shift, and the roaring sound of the river of rejection will be heard again. Obama will be blown out of the hearts of Americans like the Bush II regime was.

We simply can not stand those things.

The American people together with the world soundly rejected, and will continue to soundly reject, those notions of darkness the despots seemingly cannot help but cling to.

That ideology of callous brutality and dishonesty, which sends shivers down the spines of humane people the world over.

Obama must be as serious about ending the wars, ending the notion of torture, ending the dishonest propaganda, and instead embrace a serious energy that prosecutes those who severely damaged America this past decade.

It was not foreigners who damaged America the most, instead, it was those who are still walking around thinking nothing at all will ever happen to them.

Those being protected by the Obama Administration up to this point; those who will destroy the Obama Administration like they destroy everything else they get a chance to destroy.

It is time for Obama to reject something; he must reject what the people rejected when they elected him.

In the second article we discussed the first shot across our economic bow. The main factor is not that China fired that shot, the main factor is that they were able to fire it without being condemned for it.

In the current economic climate China was able to publicly call for a new currency to replace the US Dollar. Sadaam Hussein's "last words" as a leader of a country was to call for the replacement of the US Dollar as the world's reserve currency.

But things have changed since then. At the G20 today France is threatening to walk out if it does not get its way.

The US is seen as the source of these catastrophic economic times, and if Obama continues to protect and embrace the policies people the world over have rejected, a storm of nastiness will blow across the globe, and Obama will loose more than his popularity at home.

It is time to bring some wrath down on the ideology and the perpetrators of the ideology that was rejected in our recent election.

If that does not happen, the damage that will be done as a result of that failure will not go unnoticed. I expect a 20% drop in popularity when all is said and done.

UPDATE: Holder is dropping all charges against Ted Stevens, a Senator who was convicted by a jury. No new charges will be brought. In most cases there is a new trial when prosecutors violate the Brady principle of providing exculpatory evidence to the defense lawyer. Then the court decides if the evidence that was not provided to the defense was sufficient to change a jury's mind. If so a new trial is the remedy, not a dismissal of the indictment. Stevens received special treatment.

Obama has nominated the bankster for the number two place at treasury who drafted the deregulation which some democrats say led in part to the current financial problems.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Hip Hip Hooray For ABC News

Tonight Charles Gibson was pulling no punches.

It surprised me that an MSM program would uncover what I haven't even seen on MSNBC, or Democracy Now for that matter.

He covered the behind the scene events we exposed here about AIG a while back.

He exposed Cassano, the spawn of Mike Milken who was once called the junk bond king, and who went to federal prison years ago.

He exposed Joseph Cassano who has now fled from the USA to a foreign destination after decimating us economically.

Good for you ABC News! Keep up the good work.

Cornyn On Bad Blog

This post was moved to make room.

It's Your Money

That is the one catch all phrase that is repeated no matter what shape the banks and Wall Street think they are in.

During those times when they tell us "these are good times", if you ask whose money is in the banks they will say "it's your money".

They explain that when we put our money into their bank it is still our money.

They explain that in "the banking system" they loan our money out as if it was not ours but instead as if it was theirs.

Even when they loan it to us.

Yes, that is also called "the banking system".

During those times when they tell us "these are not good times", if you ask whose money is in the banks they will still say "it's your money".

When they haven't done a good job with our money in their bank, the money becomes invisible so that they can no longer find it in their bank.

Not to worry, that is called a correction in "the banking system".

Yes, do not despair, the government (which is called "your government") then puts imaginary money into the banks, and for some reason the money can then once again be found.

During those times, if you ask whose money is in the banks they will say "it's your money".

Somehow I get the notion that they think "it's your money" is some sort of comforting statement.

At least I am sure it is comforting to them.

I say that because after having said "correction" they seem to blast on as if correction is a simple bridge they cross all the time saying "it's your money".

I can only conclude that they must be time travellers who sometimes spend, loan, and waste money we have now, and the remainder of the time they spend money we are promised to have in the future.

When some bankster tells me "it's your money" I always suspect that they have travelled in time a bit, at least in their own mind, and that "your" means "your family" that is yet unborn.

And of course in "the banking system" that trip is always paid for because "it's your money".

Wee The People

As the media declines and as it is gobbled up by the corrupt military oil complex (those who own more and more of it) there is a very serious and real danger that we will not rise out of the banana republic status we have sunk into.

We pointed out that condition and status recently.

We always have some corruption, but what separates adult nations from banana republics is the degree of corruption, and the capacity to appropriately respond to it.

Those we elect seem to have lost the will and the capacity to fully respond to it. Either that or they are not the real sources of power. There could be a shadow government.

We must develop an investigative strategy that will at least let us know which it is ... so we may treat the exact disease we need to treat ... with the exact medicine we need to treat it with.

Our motto is "We the people", their motto is "wee the people".

The next post in this series is here.

Open Thread

How sayest thou?