Posted in C-Haze, Conservative, Current Events, Democrats, George Bush, House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, News, Policy, Politics, President, Republicans, Torture, War on Terror

Two Cents, Nancy Pelosi and Torture

I was going to hold off a li’l while before posting my opinion on Nancy Pelosi, and whether or not she was briefed by the CIA on the Bush Administration’s use of torture.

Most people seem to have already made up their minds on the matter- even as the majority of the facts remain unknown- and the story is beginning to die out in the news.

Rather than run the risk of posting on an irrelevant topic later (God forbid!), I guess I’ll put my two cents in now.

First of all, I am saddened at how fast so many people- politicians and regular folk alike- jumped to conclusions on this subject, labeling Rep. Pelosi a hypocritical liar before any actual facts could even be substantianted.

I’m not saying she’s not a hypocrite, nor am I saying she isn’t a liar. I’m not even saying she handled herself appropriately with regards to the CIA’s use of waterboarding.

What I’m saying is that we just don’t know.

Not yet, anyway.

I’ve heard Pelosi discussing the CIA briefings she received as a member of the House Intelligence Committee.

These so-called briefings have been a pet peeve of hers for a long time, certainly before this waterboarding controversy ever hit our radar screens.

When Congressional members of the Committee are briefed by Intelligence officials, they are not necessarily given complete or truly accurate information. The CIA (especially, one assumes, during this country’s most dangerous and dishonest administration) simply is not held accountable for briefing Intelligence Committee members with complete information.

Once the oft-incomplete briefing is held, the members of the committee are not allowed to ask questions for clarification purposes or to be given more information. In addition, they are not allowed to discuss the briefing with anyone else- including their own attorneys or staff members.

Pelosi isn’t saying the CIA didn’t “brief” her. She’s simply saying they didn’t give her the details that are now public knowledge, and even if they had, she wasn’t allow to do or say anything at all about any of it.

Pelosi is not the only Representative to level this charge. Bob Graham is another vocal critic of the briefings, and in fact backs Rep. Pelosi’s version of events as well.

Considering the CIA’s use of torture is illegal, are we really to believe that the organization, under the command of the likes of Bush and Cheney, really gave Pelosi all the information she would have needed to be able to determine that they were breaking the law?

Of course not.

They wanted to continue torturing people… they’re not going to give one of their adversaries the rope she needs to hang them.

Beyond all the did-she-know-or-didn’t-she-know nonsense, are we not missing the point entirely?

The point, people, is torture.

The illegal, immoral use of torture, and the lies we were all told by the Bush Administration for years, to justify violating the Geneva Conventions, thus making us less safe.

The GOP, it seems, is using Nancy Pelosi to defend such horrors as waterboarding, in effect saying “Pelosi should have stopped us and because she didn’t, we tortured people over and over again”.

As if George Bush, prior to signing all those executive orders was really looking to Pelosi, screaming, “For the love of God!! PLEASE STOP ME!!!”

Give me a break.

All I can say is, any one of you who believe Nancy Pelosi deserves to go down as a result of these briefings, and her alleged inaction as a result, better be supporters of Bush/Cheney and friends being charged with war crimes.

If you aren’t in support of the Bush Administration being taken to task for its lying, torturous, war-time transgressions, then you really need to shut your mouth where Nancy Pelosi is concerned.

For even if she is guilty of every single one of these allegations against her, they still pale in comparison to what our previous Commander-in-Chief was up to.

Posted in C-Haze, Conservative, Current Events, Democrats, House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, News, Newt Gingrich, Politics, Republicans, Torture, War on Terror

Newt Gingrich, Nancy Pelosi and Torture

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi engaged in a “despicable, dishonest and vicious political effort” when claiming to know little about the use of waterboarding and other CIA-sanctioned “enhanced” interrogation methods.

She lied to the House of Representatives and to the American public.

That’s what Newt Gingrich says, anyway, while trying to justify his belief that the House should open an inquiry to investigate her claims that the CIA never briefed her about the use of torture on terror suspects.

The “despicable, dishonest” part of his quote sounded familiar somehow, so I immediately got to researchin’.

Lo’ and behold…

… I found what I was looking for.

How about this

The House ethics committee recommended last night that (the) House Speaker face an unprecedented reprimand from… colleagues after concluding that inaccurate information supplied to investigators represented “intentional or . . . reckless” disregard of House rules.”

Huh.

I bet your average Pelosi-hater will read that and begin foaming at the mouth… nodding their heads in agreement… “Yup-yup, that’s right… they’re gonna recommend a punishment for her? That’s great!!”

… Except that the quote’s not referring to Nancy  Pelosi at all. 

See, Newt Gingrich knows a thing or two about lying to the House of Representatives and unethical behavior himself.

In January of 1997 the House Ethics Committee voted, 7-1, to reprimand then-House Speaker Gingrich, as well as fining him $300,000 in additional sanctions. This action concluded the investigation against Newt Gingrich for illegally using tax-deductible money for political purposes, and for lying to investigators.

The above quote was said about Newt more than 12 years ago.

Gingrich, in fact, holds the distinction of being the first-ever, and to this day, only House Speaker to ever receive an official reprimand by the House of Representatives.

Yeah. I said ever.

In the meantime, he’s going off on Pelosi every chance he gets. He says she only has 2 defenses with regards to this CIA waterboarding fiasco… she was either dishonest or incompetent.

I wonder which defense worked best for him?

The dishonesty defense? Or the incompentence one?

Unfortunately, Gingrich, who never had that much credibility to begin with, simply sounds ridiculous right now.

He’s unusually rabid with regards to Speaker Pelosi, and knowing his own history as Speaker of the House, it simply seems he’s being over-zealous for the wrong reasons.

He just wants someone else to join him in his rare distinction of “Reprimanded House Speaker”.

Poor guy’s gettin’ lonely.

Gingrich himself does not support torture, and for that I congratulate him. His is not a popular position within the Republican Party right now, and I applaud him for taking a stand.

His motivation for calling for Pelosi to be investigated may, perhaps, seem more genuine if he would back off a little from the rabid-attack-dog act, and hold off until all the facts are known.

I sincerely hope the rest of us will do the same, waiting until all the facts come to light before condemning Nancy Pelosi to Newt Gringrich’s ‘hood.

Personally speaking, if it does turn out that Speaker Pelosi knew that our soldiers were torturing people and never did anything to either bring the behavior to light or stop it, and then turned around and went on a media-blitz after Bush left office, condemning him for knowing about torture, supporting torture, and not actively working to end torture, I will not only be calling for her to be reprimanded, but impeached entirely.

Posted in C-Haze, Economy, News, Policy, Politics

Auto Bailout Doesn’t Go Down Any Better The 2nd Time Around

I think I finally understand what the deal is with this auto bailout.

I still think it stinks, but I can at least make some sense out of it now- at least more than I could before.

Recently, when Congress started talking about a $25 billion bailout for the Big 3 automakers, I felt like I had de ja vu.

I remember hearing almost the exact same thing- verbatim, in fact- back in September.

Congress passed a $25 billion auto bailout almost 2 months ago

So what the hell is going on?

Surely they haven’t spent all that money… right?

Well, the good news is, they haven’t.

In fact, they haven’t even received a penny of it.

The original bill earmarked the money to be distributed- in the form of loans- in 2009.

OK.

The problem now is that the auto industry doesn’t think they can wait that long, claiming they will be out of cash by December.

So the bill we’re hearing about- the bill Congress met in an attempt to pass last week- is a different bill, one that if successful, will make funds available to Ford, Chrysler and GM immediately.

Personally, I say tough shit.

I’m glad Congress, with no help from Nancy Pelosi’s screechin’ ass, didn’t get enough support to vote on the bill.

The Big 3 automakers simply aren’t viable.

They make these huge gas-guzzling vehicles during a time of economic calamity… shit the public doesn’t even want… and then go crying to the federal government, begging for money to keep making…

Wait for it…

… Shit the public doesn’t even want.

Yeah.

Cuz that makes all kinds of sense.

Or not.

Perhaps they should make a vehicle that gets better gas mileage.

Maybe it’s time for them to realize that the average American doesn’t want or need a pickup truck that can pull a 20,000 ton airplane behind it.

Seriously- who the hell wants to drive around in an SUV that gets 14 gallons to the mile?

No one does!

Well, no one but rednecks… and they’re definitely in the minority here.

… At least I hope they are.

Regardless, I am fed up with Congress, I’m fed up with whiny-ass bitches and CEOs- rich people who will remain rich no matter what the hell happens here- with their hands outstretched, begging for cash from those of us who can least afford to spare it.

You reap what you sow…

… They made their beds…

Let ’em lie down in the shit they’ve created.

Posted in C-Haze, Economy, News, Politics

Rising Blood Pressure, More Bailouts and a New Kia

This crap is getting downright old.

Another bailout?

Whew.

This time it’s the automobile industry.

Rumor has it that the dems, led by Nancy Pelosi (House Speaker), are pushing for $25 billion in taxpayer funds to help the 3 biggest- and most troubled- companies within the auto industry.

The bill is expected to pass next week during a lame-duck session.

Funding will (hopefully) come from the already-approved $700 billion originally earmarked to save the financial sector on Wall Street.

Ugh.

Ok.

Here’s what I need to know- Why is there an extra $25 billion available from the original bailout package?

I mean, I thought this $700 billion price tag was the bare minimum- a must- to save the banks…

…So did Congress actually pass a much bigger package than was actually necessary?

Say it ain’t so!

Seems to me, it wasn’t too terribly long ago that politicians were hoppin’ up and down, swearing that the banks needed at least $700 billion to save their butts…

Are they now saying that the banks didn’t actually need all that money, and that there is enough excess- billions in excess, mind you- to save Ford, GM and Chrysler too?

… And did the original damn bailout even work?

I don’t know about anybody else, but my 401(k) is still as deep in the shitter as it ever was.

Sounds like a lose-lose situation to me.

If there is enough excess from that original bill to bail out the auto industry then I’m pissed off that I was lied to… it would mean that my representatives fed me a bunch of bull about how necessary every penny of this was, and took more than they needed to take- of my money.

On the flip side, If there isn’t enough excess to cover the auto industry then I am pissed off because really, what the hell are we having this conversation for, if we can’t even afford to help?

Look- the whole thing stinks.

Bush has said he may veto, should Congress send legislation his way that requires the government to dip into funds that have previously been earmarked for Wall Street.

At the same time, however, the bill may not pass if Congress tries to create an additional bailout- to the tune of $25 billion- seperate from the money set aside for the financial sector.

Not without billions in added pork, anyway.

Regardless, I still haven’t heard a single fuckin’ word about who is going to help me– the little guy who needs it most.

When I bailed out the banks, nobody tried to make my loans easier to repay or more secure in return.

Now that I have to bail out the auto industry too, I don’t hear anything about lowering the interest on my car loan, or hell, even helping me make a single payment.

If the government wants to “shore up the economy”, how about take those billions of dollars- our money- and give it back to us?

Hell, if I had an extra several hundred thousand dollars in my pocket, I’d start spending.

I promise you I would.

I’d do it with finesse!

What better way to get the economy going again than giving hard-working people their own money back, and letting them spend it?

Sheesh.

This nonsense has my blood pressure up.

This is why I voted against every last incumbent on the ballot November 4th.

I figure the people we have runnin’ this thing have done a royal job of scewing it all up… so I voted for every single challenger on that damn ballot, regardless of party line.

I had never even heard of half the people I voted for.

… But I didn’t give a hoot.

Meanwhile, if Chrysler goes under, I’ll buy a fuckin’ Kia… and if the rest of us do the same, they’ll have no choice but to hire the old Big Three union workers to meet their added demand.

Perfect!

And this time around, I suggest they NOT pay their employees 80 zillion dollars a year plus benefits to screw a damn screw into a flippin’ door down on the line… Union or not.

That’d save a bundle, I’m sure.

Better yet, I’m calling Chrysler as soon as this thing passes- they own the loan on my Sebring… and I’m letting them know that effective immediately, my loan is paid in full.

I just gave them 25 billion dollars, dammit.

I’m tired of this shit.

Posted in Barack Obama, C-Haze, Economy, Elections, Joe Biden, John McCain, News, Politics, Presidential Campaign, Sarah Palin, Single Mom, War on Terror

Economic Ramblings of a Broke A$$ Woman

It’s taken some days, but I’ve finally figured out how I feel about this economic bailout thing that’s been monopolizing my radio, my tv, my internet, and the proverbial water cooler at work.

I hate it.

Should Congress be successful in resurrecting the bill and bringing it to another vote, I hope it fails miserably.

There.

I said it.

I’ve been waiting- for days- to hear how this thing is going to help Main Street… and now finally understand that Main Street won’t benefit at all.

With that in mind, I say…

Fuck ’em.

Why should my broke ass incur the debt of financial institutions that A) did this shit to themselves and B) aren’t even willing to throw me a bone by way of thanks for bailing them out?

The answer is, I shouldn’t.

From my vantage point… waaaay down here where I’m sitting… it looks like I’m going to be just as screwed if this thing passes as I will be if this thing fails…

Except that one of those options will result in my incurring a mind-blowingly huge debt on top of everything else I’m trying to shoulder right now.

Either way it goes, my fellow taxpayers and I are no more or less likely to remain in our homes, nor are we any more or less likely to be able to afford fuel for our cars, food for our families, or medical expenses for our loved ones.

The Treasury Secretary, the President, Wall Street and Congress are all running around like some chickens with their heads cut off, screeching about how if we don’t pass this thing, the world is going to come to an end.

Honestly, it’s been real tough to get too stressed about it considering the behavior of Congress- especially yesterday. Our representatives have been cluck-cluck-cluckin’ about how important this bailout legislation is… but when it failed in the House, we learned the reason it died was baby-ass, pansy pettiness.

Our esteemed representatives thought it was more important to let their personal vendettas dictate how they voted on this oh-so-important bill than it was to vote on the issues contained in the thing itself.

Let’s see…  they didn’t like Nancy Pelosi’s speech from the floor of the House yesterday morning, so rather than pass the damn thing like they swore they would, they voted Nay.

Seriously?

This is how they make decisions? This is how our elected officials decide whether or not to pass legislation that according to them may be our last option to save the economy?

Perhaps they don’t really care as much about Main Street as they claim they do… or maybe this shit isn’t quite as big a deal as they’re trying to make it out to be after all.

… And don’t misunderstand- I’m not giving Nancy Pelosi a free pass either… so settle down, Republicans.

Why did she decide to give an Anti-Bush-Administration-and-anything-GOP campaign speech at that particular moment?

Talk about inappropriate.

Seems to me, had the bill been that stinkin’ important, perhaps the representatives would have been concentrating on coming together… not tearing each other apart… and while Nancy-girl was not the only person guilty of doing it, she did it the biggest, in the worst possible place, at the worst possible time.

Yet these same people, who cannot, for the lives of them, bring themselves to put their petty differences aside- for less than an hour- so this thing can pass, want me to believe that the bailout is the end-all-be-all to all things financial?

Doubtful.

Perhaps I would have shared in their urgency had they behaved like adults.

As far as I’m concerned, if the legislation wasn’t important enough for them to stop bickering long enough to pass it, than it likely isn’t important enough for me to get all excited about either.

While our oh-so-mature Congress was been acting like a bunch of spoiled rotten three year olds, I have been patiently waiting to hear what, specifically, will happen, should this bill fail again.

Are we headed for another Great Depression? Will the very fiber of our economy grind to a halt? Will the meager pennies I have in the bank no longer be insured, causing me to lose the little cash flow I currently enjoy?

No one has an answer.

Not a single person knows what the heck is going to happen, should this bailout fail.

Is it possible the market will right itself, causing no additional strain on We The Tax Payers?

Yep.

Is it possible that life will get really miserable for investment bankers?

Yep- that’s almost a guarantee.

Other than the fact that regular ol’ middle class Americans will get no relief whatsoever from bailing the financial sector out, not much else can be stated for sure.

Sorry guys.

Not good enough.

Perhaps it’s time the fat cats in the banking world learn to sink or swim- just like like the rest of us have had to do- while they were gorging themselves- excessively and unnecessarily… and quite frankly, criminally.

I say, welcome to my world…

And there is no life guard on duty.

Crunch.

Posted in Barack Obama, C-Haze, Economy, Elections, Joe Biden, John McCain, News, Politics, Presidential Campaign, Sarah Palin, War on Terror

Depression, Burning Tables and The House of Representatives

The Bailout has failed.

It didn’t even make it past the House today… and well… let’s face it…

This nonsense has officially become a full-blown mess.

The Republicans are blaming the Democrats, claiming the measure would have passed, had Nancy Pelosi not given such a partisan speech on the House floor this morning.

The Democrats are counter-blaming the Republicans, claiming the GOP was being vengeful in not voting for this thing… and that by hatin’ on Nancy Pelosi, they knowingly let the entire country down.

I say both sides are fuckin’ up.

The Dow plummeted further than it ever has in the entire history of the U.S today.

This whole entire situation is… um…

I don’t even know what to say.

It’s jacked up.

We taxpayers never should have been put in this position- being asked to bail out a bunch of fat cats who gambled with their own damn cash and lost- to begin with.

Now that we’re in it, the absolute b.s. is starting to pile high- it’s smelly as hell- and the pile just keeps getting bigger.

We’ve got bickering for the sake of bickering, we’ve got inappropriate earmarking, we’ve got every damn thing except for…

A plan.

What’s most maddening about all this is that we Americans, whose tax dollars are on the line when Congress does eventually come up with a way out of this cluster-fuck, are the most powerless.

There’s nothing we can do about any of this right now.

We just have to trust that the same people who refused to pass this legislation today, due to their own trivial nonsensical disagreements will eventually do the right thing.

In the meantime, while we wait, let’s all just pray that by the time winter comes, we won’t be so desperate that we find ourselves burning our own kitchen tables simply to heat up our homes.

Depressing, isn’t it?