Friday, December 17, 2004

Accuracy In Media

Most under-reported news of 2004
Very interesting.

Kofi---Its time to go

Ever and Annan?
COVER STORY: For U.S. lawmakers, the secretary-general cannot outlast the UN's multibillion-dollar oil scandal by Mindy Belz
When U.S. energy giant Enron first reported a $24 billion discrepancy in assets, it led to the largest U.S. bankruptcy scandal in history, to multibillions of dollars in losses for stockholders, to at least one suicide, and to criminal charges against 33 principals with over 20 now serving criminal sentences or awaiting punishment.
With UN Oil for Food discrepancies now standing just over the $21 billion mark, and with the illegal proceeds now linked to financing terrorism and weapons production, prompting at least one assassination, the key figures in what could become the world's largest financial fraud scheme have thus far—with the possible exception of Saddam Hussein—keeping up an exacting charade of business as usual.
Secretary-General Kofi Annan last week presided over a conference denouncing Islamophobia and received a standing ovation before UN delegates. Such choreographed appearances are designed to counter growing calls for his resignation.
The 66-year-old native of Ghana and career UN executive steadfastly downplays the rumble beneath his feet, but critics say he is ignoring the manmade lava flow it actually is—billions in oil revenues unaccounted for, millions in aid to Iraqis undelivered, and documented kickbacks on oil contracts to interests connected to permanent Security Council members France and Russia.
"We need to continue with our work," Mr. Annan told London's Financial Times in a Dec. 5 interview, admitting only a "perception problem" and vowing to serve out his term. But Mr. Annan's Oil for Food administrator, Benon Sevan, is named in government documents retrieved from Baghdad, suggesting he received oil contract kickbacks from Saddam. And Mr. Annan's son Kojo worked for a Swiss-based contractor, Cotecna, that held a lucrative Oil for Food contract to monitor goods arriving in Iraq. The firm paid Kojo Annan through February 2004.
Nearly a dozen U.S. lawmakers are calling for Mr. Annan's resignation. They also threaten to withhold 10 percent of U.S. contributions to the UN—or about $40 million—starting next year and doubling in 2006 unless Mr. Annan releases Oil for Food records to Congress.
Mr. Annan's most persistent challenger is Minnesota Sen. Norm Coleman, chairman of the Senate's Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations. UN officials have denied his committee access to Oil for Food records. U.S. officials, on the other hand, have uncovered Saddam's Oil for Food records in Baghdad. Based on those records, subcommittee investigators say the size of the fraud "is staggering" and plan to release fuller details early next year.
Mr. Coleman began calling for the secretary-general's resignation last month, saying, "The most extensive fraud in the history of the UN occurred on his watch." As long as Mr. Annan remains in charge, he said, "the world will never be able to learn the full extent of the bribes, kickbacks, and under-the-table payments that took place under the UN's collective nose."
As secretary-general Mr. Annan has presided over all but the earliest days of the Oil for Food program. Even as undersecretary-general, he traveled to Baghdad to cobble the humanitarian program to provide needed goods to Iraqis using limited oil revenues. As UN chief he supervised the program's key administrators and lobbied for the program's expansion, even as evidence grew that billions in oil revenues were misused.
Mr. Annan is the UN's seventh secretary-general. He took office in 1997 from a then-embattled Boutros Boutros-Ghali. He earned broad support as an African who resonated with the needs of poor member-states yet could hold his own with the wealthiest. U.S. educated, Mr. Annan lives with his second wife, who is Swedish, in a mansion reportedly once owned by the family of J.P. Morgan.
Mr. Annan received initial endorsement from the U.S. delegation, even persuading the United States to pay $1 billion in withheld dues. That relationship lost its shine, however, as he failed to make headway with Saddam Hussein, even as the UN was presiding over Iraq's economy and oil production. Mr. Annan supervised first one, and then another, weapons inspection regime booted by Saddam. At one point Mr. Annan borrowed a private jet from French President Jacques Chirac, flew to Baghdad, smoked cigars with Saddam, and hailed him as a man of "courage." The coddling ended with the Iraqi dictator kicking UN weapons experts out of the country. In 1998 that led to a U.S. bombing campaign ordered by President Bill Clinton; in 2002, it tipped the scale toward U.S. invasion.
Inside the UN's New York headquarters, despite Mr. Annan's outward composure, the tone is far from business as usual. Close-at-hand observers say "a crisis atmosphere" had begun to build even before lawmakers demanded Mr. Annan's resignation. The financial scandal looms over other pressing problems: an overdue plan to restructure the world body's budget process, sexual scandals involving two prominent senior officers (both exonerated by Mr. Annan), and the UN's inability to adequately oversee upcoming elections in Iraq. Last month the UN employees union passed a no-confidence resolution against UN senior management.
Dwarfing the internal chaos, however, is Oil for Food mismanagement. The Iraqi government first uncovered evidence of oil contracts amounting to kickbacks to over 100 foreign entities. Discoveries of detailed accounts by Saddam's British-trained bureaucrats led to the death of Iraqi accountant Ehsan Karim, whose car was wired to explode last July. Congressional investigators then announced that theft under the program was at least twice as high as previously estimated, nearly $22 billion. And questions remain outstanding about interest earned on Iraq's oil revenues deposited in French banks, about the UN's $1.5 billion in administrative costs, and about senior official kickbacks from Saddam.
"UN agencies are almost completely unaccountable. They don't even know how they spend their money and how programs are run," said Austin Ruse, a UN lobbyist and president of the Culture of Life Foundation. "One thing we are looking for is transparency, and it's the one thing you don't get. There is a complete and utter lack of transparency."
Reformers hope that investigations will be a blunt instrument to extract both political and administrative change at UN headquarters—with or without Mr. Annan. Security Council members, including the United States, aren't likely to openly ask Mr. Annan to step down. But a new and more conservative Congress isn't likely to be so polite. "This is gasoline on the fire for a lot of members of Congress who don't like the UN, " said Mr. Ruse, "and those numbers are growing." —•
Article from WORLD Magazine.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Funny media clip

This is hilarious. Be sure that you have Windows Media to be able to play it.

Interference

The state of Washington ruled today that it is illegal for a parent to eavesdrop on a child's phone conversations.
Wow. Now I understand everything so clearly. Parents are only the government's tool by which taxpayers and workers are produced. Parents don't actually have any rights concerning the way they bring up their children. NOT!

Also, this woman reported a theft. Yet she gets charged for eavesdropping. This is incredible.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

News Highlights

"Republicans have Dems over a 'Barrel'"
"Democrats first and foremost need to make it clear that they have a commitment to protect this country's security regardless of what other countries say..."
Huh. You think?

"Florida governor turns to US Supreme Court in euthanasia case"
The latest development in the case for Terri Schiavo....

Monday, November 29, 2004

Paralyzed woman walks again after stem cell therapy

Yahoo News reports from Singapore, that a a woman has been partially healed from paralysis using stem cells from her umbilical cord. Cool article.
Article
Is this ethical? Is any of this research ethical?
-Palm Boy
-----------------------------------------------------------

Planting human cells in animals, causing human organs to grow within that animal, then harvesting the organs for transplants into a human body. I didn't know they could do this.Is this right? Wrong? Does anybody else know more about this?
-Liz

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

For your information....

Here are some links that I found interesting:

Disturbingly racist cartoons of Condoleeza Rice

Hillary Clinton: A Southerner AND an Evangelical Christian

"Black Is Bigot" by Rich Lowry---interesting commentary on the growing number of African Americans that vote conservative. Good to read along with:

"Winning Values" by Rich Lowry--Democrats are wondering "what are values" and "how can we get them?" since the latest election

"Man of Faith, Man of the Hour" by Bob Jones--The people voted for their values in this election, and it showed.

Recent Quotes:

"When Achilles died, the Greeks were in trouble."
- Conservative activist and Bush ally Grover Norquist, predicting that Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle's loss in South Dakota will make other Senate Democrats from "red states" less likely to oppose Bush policies.

"We have lost the ability to connect with people's value systems."
- U.S. Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.), on the inability of Democrats to attract the votes of churchgoers and others motivated by moral concerns.

"Autumn is the time of year that all the states turn red."
Late-night talk-show host David Letterman after the election.

"I just wanted to make sure I did this before I headed into the fight."
Marine Corporal Keith Arguelles, beaming and dripping wet after being baptized in a rubber dinghy filled with water in Iraq. About 35 marines gathered in a brick chapel for worship, prayer, and baptism as they prepared for the attack on Fallujah.

Quotes courtesy of WORLD Magazine, www.worldmag.com


Monday, November 01, 2004

U.S. Arrogance

China blasts U.S. entrance into Iraq as "arrogant"
Read their statement about Bush and Iraq. Its really lame and almost laughable coming from China.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Bubba's back, Kerry's got him

Bubba's back, Kerry's got him

If you'll read the article, it is all about Clinton. So was this a rally for clinton, or for Kerry?

Monday, October 18, 2004

Putin: Terrorists want Bush to lose election

Article about Putin's recent statement

"International terrorism has as its goal to prevent the election of President Bush to a second term," he said. "If they achieve that goal, then that will give international terrorism a new impulse and extra power."

So the terrorists are rooting for Kerry. How....reassuring.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Saddam/Al-Qaeda/9-11 links

WORLD MAGAZINE ARTICLE--MUST READ
Finally: New Iraqi documents connect the dots to a vast conspiracy linking Saddam to al-Qaeda.
The truth comes out.....

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Edwards' Christopher Reeve quote

Stem Cell Research Article
Excerpts from article:
"First, the inability of the human spinal cord to regenerate is one of the great mysteries of biology. The answer is not remotely around the corner. It could take a generation to unravel. To imply, as Edwards did, that it is imminent if only you elect the right politicians is scandalous.
"As a doctor by training, I've known better than to believe the hype -- and have tried in my own counseling of the newly spinal-cord injured to place the possibility of cure in abeyance. I advise instead to concentrate on making a life (and a very good life it can be) with the hand one is dealt. The greatest enemy of this advice has been the snake-oil salesmen promising a miracle around the corner. I never expected a candidate for vice president to be one of them...the implication that Christopher Reeve was prevented from getting out of his wheelchair by the Bush stem cell policies is a travesty."

Monday, October 11, 2004

Citizens Against Government Waste

Citizens Against Government Waste: "$50,000,000 added in conference for an indoor rainforest project in Coralville, Iowa by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Charles Grassley (R-Iowa). The project, which originally was included in the Energy Policy Act of 2003 bill that failed to pass in December, 2003, became so indispensable that Sen. Grassley added it to the Omnibus Appropriations Bill in late January 2004. When completed, Iowa will have the world�s largest enclosed rainforest, spanning five acres. A local businessman, Ted Townsend (heir to the Townsend meat-packing fortune), came up with this idea while contemplating his legacy on a treadmill. Since then, Townsend has worked to see that taxpayers will pay dearly for his dream to be realized. The project, which is estimated to cost $225 million, includes a generous $5 million from Townsend. This tropical boondoggle has some big name supporters, such as former Iowa Governor Bob Ray (R), who is the chairman of the institute Townsend founded to oversee the production of the rainforest. Ray imagines that it will solve the state's demographic problems by drawing more people to move to Iowa. Ray also believes that mass quantities of retiring baby boomers will crisscross the country to visit the indoor rainforest. Senator Grassley claims that it will somehow help the University of Iowa. Ultimately, this project will do nothing for Iowa's population, energy industry, or the environment, but it will soak the taxpayers. "

That is just dumb

Kerry in the Lead

Leading up to the debate in Arizona, Kerry opens up a margin.link

BTW, this is a zogby poll. Very un-parttisan.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

The Dark Side is seductive

The path of the dark side is seductive...

Darth Vader Mugs Pizza Man

Some one is trying to ruin the spotless image of Darth Vader....


j/k

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

In case you're interested...

Article: Malaysian man married for the 53rd time--
Website: Low down on the Presidental Debates
Website: You don't have to submit your personal info to read from the NY Times and Washington Post if you go to this website and get a free username and password. Check it out.
Listen online: Sean Hannity radio show.
Listen online: Scott Wilder radio show.

Feel free to comment/rant about your thoughts on these links....

Friday, October 01, 2004

Debate

In this season of debates, I was thinking of one that seems to keep popping up. So, I thought we might as well get it settled once and for all.
Here is the subject:
Should we legalize drugs, since the war against them is obviously being lost?

Rules: No ad hominems or red herrings allowed.

Monday, September 27, 2004

To draft, or not to draft, that is the question...

Okay folks, here we go. Gullible people are all fired up after a e-mail (a scam) says that Bush is pushing a bill that reestablished the draft. (article here)
But this is bringing back controversy about the draft. One New England teen was so scared that he shot himself, hoping to "avoid the draft", only to find out that there was no such thing.

Should we bring back the draft? Should women now be included in that draft?

Friday, September 24, 2004

Hostile Indians vs. Lewis and Clark

Article
This brings up an interesting topic.
There is a group of history buffs reenacting the Lewis and Clark expedition. They were met with opposition by a group of American Indians who allegedly threatened to tip over the "Lewis" and "Clark"'s boat.
"How can we allow Lewis and Clark to tell our story when they're the ones who brought death and genocide to our people?", says Alex White Plume of the Pine Ridge Indian reservation.
Was Western expansion inevitable? More importantly, should we commemorate Lewis and Clarks expedition?

Monday, September 20, 2004

Media bias

To everyone who still thinks the media is unbiased:


Bush signed Form 180, allowing all records about him to be released. Kerry has refused to sign this form.
"...We have the great Vietnam hero, John Kerry, who will not release all of his records, and the National Guardsman, George Bush, has directed the release of all of his, and not a single big media reporter is interested. Not a single big media reporter finds this curious. Not one of them!"

Kerry admitted to war crimes. Do you hear the media complain about that? No. Bush missed a physical, and we hear nothing but how Bush "slacked off" during his National Guard service!
"John Kerry has admitted, he has admitted in Senate testimony, it's on film, it's on videotape, he has admitted to committing war atrocities. (audio) Am I right? He has admitted this. Let me ask you a question. If the left is intellectually honest about what they think about war, what's worse?...Having admitted committing atrocities -- shall I detail them? -- in torching villages, lopping off ears and limbs, these kinds of atrocities John Kerry admitted to committing. Now, let me ask you, does that not seem far more serious than missing a physical? Now, other than Tim Russert, I don't believe a single big media journalist has pressed Kerry on this. In fact, they try to give him a pass. In fact, they are saying that because he committed those atrocities, he understands the horrors of war and therefore is more qualified. Bush doesn't know beans about war. He missed a physical in the National Guard. These forged documents, my friends, the point here, the forged documents are only a small part of the brazen attempt by some in the media to manipulate the news. Let's look at the Abu Ghraib prison again. Kerry admits to atrocities. He admits to committing atrocities as a soldier in Vietnam, yet seeks to become president. Meanwhile, we get story after story trying to link Bush to the prison, when he had nothing to do with it. "Bush is worse, he missed a physical! Abu Ghraib!" Kerry will not sign Form 180, is hiding his medical record. Bush has done just the opposite. Kerry is stonewalling; Bush isn't. Bush has nothing to do with Abu Ghraib. Kerry committed atrocities and we don't hear about any of that, and of course if you want to keep going, Chappaquiddick hadn't hurt Kennedy at all with the liberal media. The Ku Klux Klan and Robert Byrd hasn't hurt Byrd at all with the mainstream media. Tom Daschle and his wife? His wife lobbies Congress. She claims not to lobby the Senate but everybody knows who she is. But Halliburton? Halliburton is a devil because Cheney once worked there, and now it's front and center again in the John Kerry campaign. Cheney has a pension from Halliburton and this proves that we went to Iraq because Cheney has ties to Halliburton, and Halliburton is overcharging, and that's why all of this is pointless, and we shouldn't have been doing it and... It's just idiocy. If there was an honest appraisal of the Democrat campaign, it would be, "Who stole the brains of the people at the top and transplanted them with the brains of a bunch of crocodiles?" It is just absolutely stunning to watch all this."

Quotes taken from a transcript from rushlimbaugh.com

Friday, September 17, 2004

Assault Weapons Ban

Should the Assault Weapons Ban be reinstated? Or is it a violation of the right to bear arms?

Since the ban has expired, the following guns can now be purchased in the U.S., though some of them are illegal to import into America:

AK-47 and all models of the Norinco, Mitchell and Poly Technologies Avtomat Kalashnikovs, designed in the former Soviet Union.
Uzi and Galil, both made by Action Arms Israeli Military Industries.
TEC-9, TEC-22 and TEC-DC9, manufactured by Intratec.
SWD M-10, M-11, M-11-9 and M-12. Based on the design of the MAC-10, their full-automatic cousin, these assault pistols are designed to fire many bullets over a wide area in seconds.
Street Sweeper and Striker 12 and other revolving cylinder semiautomatic shotguns.
Beretta AR-70 and SC-70, used by armed forces in a number of countries including Italy, Jordan and Malaysia.
Colt AR-15, the civilian version of the M-16 rifle that is the U.S. military's standard-issue rifle.
Several weapons manufactured by Fabrique Nationale, the FN-FAL, FN-LAR and FNC. The guns are used by the armed forces of more than 90 countries.
Steyr AUG, a rifle made in Germany." -link

Monday, September 13, 2004

So this is what they mean by 'Evolution'

In the Hindu nation of India, monkeys are the terrorists of the residental neighborhoods.
The government is finally responding to this attack, and put the monkeys in their place...



Sunday, September 12, 2004

Thursday, September 09, 2004

The #1 Enemy of Terrorism is....

Terrorists are terrorism's worst enemy.....

Remember right after September 11 when Bush was pushing for military action from our allies? France and Germany didn't want to get involved militarily and it was all over the headlines....

Now, the rest of the world is being forced to face the threat of terrorism and join the U.S. in fighting it.
Russia recently had their own 9/11 and now have vowed to fight terrorism beyond its borders. Jakarta and Australia have more reason to hate terrorisim since the Australian Embassy in Jakarta was bombed.
So the world leaders didn't have enough guts to go into Afghanistan or Iraq and now their people are paying for it with blood.
Terrorism has become its own worst enemy by making enemies with potentially powerful countries.

Thursday, September 02, 2004

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Hilarious pictures...

Some very...interesting pictures of John Kerry attempting to play football. I guess he never had a chance to learn how to throw a football at a prep school, or in France either for that matter!

French headscarf ban/French hostages discussion

Two French journalists in Iraq were taken hostage. Their captors say they will not give up the hostages unless the headscarf ban is lifted. No country should give in to terrorist threats, but France has not been very strong against terrorists lately (to put it lightly.) Even so, I think it will lose face if it allows the threat of terrorists to undermine the French government.
Also, this brings back the debate on the wisdom of the headscarf ban. Is it an attack on the religious liberty of the French? Tell me if I am mistaken, but I thought it was not only an Islamic headscarf ban, but a ban of Jewish yarmulkes and Christian crosses.
What do you think about the ban?

Click here for an article on the French hostages....

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Advice on Lying

In a speech by John Kerry about Bush's "Kerry-smearing", Kerry stated, "If you tell a lie long enough, people could begin believing it's the truth."
My advice is that when it comes to lying tactics, believe him. He should know.

Monday, August 30, 2004

Kerry Documentary

Here is a documentary on Kerry and what he has supported/opposed about the Iraqi war.
Click here to watch it with Window's Media Player.
Click here to watch it with Real Player.

Also, this is pretty cute.

Listen up!

This is very funny and sad at the same time....it proves that ignorance is not bliss, but a handicap.
Click here to listen.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

Liar, Liar?

Liar, Truth-teller, or Confused?

An interesting article about John Kerry's seeming fickleness when it comes to remembering what actually happened in Vietnam. Is he twisting the truth for his own gain, or is he a victim of a fickle memory?

Losing Liberty

Here is a great article by Gene Edward Veith: Click here