Saturday, June 30, 2012

Earth is approximately one degree hotter globally.

An uprooted tree (click title to entry - thank you) lies across a street near American University after a violent storm passed Friday through Washington, D.C. (Mandel Ngan / AFP/GettyImages / June 30, 2012)

Heat wave: 13 dead, 3 million lose power in Mid-Atlantic storms

June 30, 20124:21 p.m.

WASHINGTON — The violent storms that ripped through the eastern United States left at least 13 people dead and millions without power on a day when temperatures hovered in the triple digits.
The Mid-Atlantic region had already been baking in 100-plus-degree heat when lightning storms and winds of up to 80 mph tore through the area Friday night. On Saturday, crews worked to fix broken traffic signals, repair utility poles and restore power — and air conditioning — to more than 3 million people.
The high-speed winds are called a derecho, from the Spanish word for "straight ahead" — a long, bow-shaped band of storms that can hurtle across more than 240 miles in a matter of hours....

The trend is for next year to be warmer than this.

So what? The Congressional Record is not a gossip column.

(CBS News) Congressional Republicans say a secret wiretap application (click title to entry - thank you) and testimony from the former head of ATF contradict key claims by Attorney General Eric Holder on whether Justice Department officials knew guns were being "walked" in ATF's Fast and Furious case. Some details of the wiretap application, which are technically under court seal, are revealed for the first time in today's Congressional Record....

The approach by the Republican House is not about solving the problem with the USA Border and gun trafficking. It is about laying blame for gun walking. It carries no brevity. 

Attorney General Holder has stated on record he was unaware of the gun walking and that is a fact. We know he was not aware of the gun walking. The entire operation in its earliest days was conducted by the Phoenix ATF. The documents listed in the Washington Post below are redacted, but, identify the individuals involved. Those individuals do not include the Attorney General. Attorney General Holder signed off on funding because that is his responsibility and that is a matter of public record.

Department of Justice Cartel Strategy, October 2009 (click here)

To realize these documents are redacted tells me all I need to know. There were covert operations not to be exposed. The operation was classified and for prosecutions remain so. For God Sake, one of the prosecutions involves one of the highest levels of the cartels that were caught with anti-aircraft guns on his property. He has disappeared and the search for this monster must remain classified. 

...The plan they developed was permitted under ATF rules, (click here) had the legal backing of U.S. Attorney Dennis K. Burke in Phoenix, and had been approved and funded by a task force at the Justice Department, ATF’s parent agency.
Nevertheless, it was risky. In drug-trafficking cases, investigating agents, by law, cannot let drugs “walk” onto the street. Since gun sales are legal, agents on surveillance are not required to step in and stop weapons from hitting the streets and must have probable cause to make an arrest. But the danger in letting guns go is obvious....

Agents could die if information of their activities get into the wrong hands. This is a hideous Republican House not seeking the end of the Mexican cartels and the deaths of innocent people in Mexico, but, using official documents and powers to carry out a political agenda. It is at the very least unethical and John Boehner, Eric Cantor and Darrel Issa are guilty. There is no doubt they are. They are not seeking solutions to end the tragedy happening between the USA and Mexico. This is crazy already. This is about the NRA, not the gun manufacturers, and the monies given to Republicans to do exactly what is occurring today.

The new program Phoenix started included the permissions of people like Mueller of the FBI. This was not a matter of 'let's go do something wild and crazy.' The idea AG Holder is contempt of anything is outrageous. Should he expose the FBI involvement, the CIA involvement, Homeland Security involvement? This is ridiculous. The efforts to seek the end of these cartels is enormous. Holder can't just say to Congress, "Here read all you want, just don't run me through the Republican Meat Grinder."

The fact of the matter is the gun walking scheme under the Bush/Cheney administration didn't work. Picking up persons purchasing these guns as if they were buying drugs didn't work. The new plan was to find where the guns went to within the higher level cartel users. The number of guns bought by these 'gun purchasers' was enormous. One, only one gun trafficker has bought 34 guns in 24 days, others bought 212 over the next month. The longer the straw purchasers walked away with their guns the more the escalation in the number of guns and purchasers. The statistical reality was obvious, the more guns in Mexico the more chances a Border Officer would be killed. 

This dynamic existed because the USA was determined to be losing the war. Those assessments came from many places, including the ATF, FBI, etc. This was a desperate act by agencies struggling with the ability to not only stop the guns bleeding over the border, but, to end the drug cartels power within Mexico. The Mexican drug cartels were being facilitated by USA guns. The gun industry was never seeking to make profits at the lives of Mexicans, but, it was happening anyway. 

One of the primary reasons the guns across the border could not be stopped was because the straw purchasers were within their Constitutional Rights to purchase all the guns they wanted, whenever they wanted. The straw purchasers were untouchable by the existing laws in the USA and that is THE TRUTH. Nothing Darrel Issa is going to do is going to change that reality. He can throw his weight around all he wants, he can propagandize all he wants, he can seek alliance with Murdoch all he wants, but, the reality does not change.

Attorney General Holder's only sin was signing off on funding for the agencies while not micromanaging the activities in those agencies. He is not responsible for the day to day activities of the AFT or the FBI or the CIA or the Border Patrol. He has a sincere obligation to protect all these agencies and their agents from harm and their evidence leading to successful prosecution.
There is absolutely no reason to prosecute any of those involved. They were doing the work of the country and a Border Patrol Officer named Brian Terry was killed in the line of duty. It is that life we should concern ourselves with and learn why he died and how to end any more at the hands of vicious criminals.

Mexico extradites suspect in U.S. consulate killing (click here)

MEXICO CITY | Fri Jun 29, 2012 11:08pm EDT
(Reuters) - Mexico has extradited a drug gang leader to face charges that he played a key part in the daylight execution of a U.S. consulate employee two years ago, officials said on Friday.
Arturo Gallegos is suspected of ordering the killing of a U.S. consulate worker on the streets of Ciudad Juarez in an ongoing effort by the Barrio Azteca drug gang to control a smuggling route, officials said.
He was handed over to U.S. law enforcement officials earlier this week, according to a statement from the Mexican attorney general's office....

Three Officers in Mexico were gunned down at the Mexico City Airport by drug cartel members. Three officers. How is anyone suppose to conduct investigations if the records on the USA side are open books? The House Republicans are way out of line.

...The confrontration quickly (click here) escalted into a shootout. Three police officers were killed in the process. The suspects escaped, and as news cameramen showed up to film security guards and police officers cordoning off sections of the busy Terminal 2 of the airport, the main point of entry for international tourists and business travelers, Mexico was left with one more public blemish in its ongoing battle with the country’s cartels.  Terminal 2 is the home to Delta, Aeromexico, and LAN Airlines, among others....

Republican propaganda can exist in a vacuum as their corrupt practices protect their election monies from the NRA, but, when measured against reality, one has to at least wonder how out of touch the Republican puppets actually are. They are a bunch of wackos.

The Living Law

To the left is a Facebook entry.

One of the legislative actions the Republicans pride themselves with is called 'The Living Law.' The Florida decision to protect a woman in a high level coma was called "Terry's Law." It went on to be legislated with a Republican majority at the federal level when Jeb Bush visited the Capital. 

Megan's Law is another example of what the Republicans believe is the optimum ability of Congress to react to the needs of the citizen.

Chief Justice Roberts, which may be the first time in his tenure, stopped seeing the USA Constitution as only words on a page. Chief Justice Roberts can be said to have departed from a strict constructionist methodology to participate in a Republican strategy called, The Living Law.

The USA Constitution was never a document designed to be so rigid it became an enemy of the people. I do believe this time, Chief Justice Roberts also believed the Legislative Branch has the right to protect all citizens from and in this case, the private sector seeking nothing but profit driven outcomes. When dealing with health care insurance profit driven outcomes are deadly. 

Any justice in the USA is allowed a conscience. As a matter of fact we all hope they exercise it. In the case of The Affordable Care Act, Chief Justice Roberts honored the power of the legislature to protect citizens while seeing taxation is a right of same legislature. The tax was not contrived to achieve a goal separate from the intent of the bill. The tax is a penalty for not participating in mandated health care insurance. Mandated health care insurance is valued as a way to bring about better health care insurance costs and end displacement of emergency room costs for those that cannot pay onto the costs of others.

Chief Justice Roberts joined four other members of the Supreme Court to honor the USA Constitution and the rights afforded the legislature in necessary law to protect not just the uninsured, but, the future of health care insurance at all.

To House Speaker Boner, "So soon?" It could have waited until after the holiday. The House should not strain so much for the country after all.

It is such a heavy lift to do the right thing for the nation. Good thing the House didn't have to worry about health care. Why is it I have a clear understanding the Republican House from any decade just couldn't get health care reform done? It must have been all that conflict of interest between campaign funding and the well being of an entire nation. Go figure. Choice seems clear to me. I would have taken the money and run.

Lawmakers approved a broad measure Friday that freezes federally subsidized student loan rates for another year, reauthorizes the government flood insurance program and extends federal transportation funding for two more years....

Decisions, decisions; "To Vote or Not To Vote. THAT is the question."