Thursday, November 04, 2004

Know Bush Facts

2004 - Forty Know Bush Facts

Welcome to the Inaugural Message of
Know Bush
based on the belief that
The Truth Shall Set You Free.

As an introduction, you know me. I am your friend, your neighbor, your family, your customer, someone I've shared moments with.

We probably don't agree on everything, but we've smiled together.

All I ask is that you, and the people you share this with, be open and willing to know more than you have, and vote. It has never been more important. (So now keep reading...)

Today's Fact is:

When Bush went to Ground Zero shortly after September 11, he threw his arm around a tired, retired firefighter at the scene and assured him and the other rescue workers he was with them. In August 2002, he pocket vetoed $150 million in emergency first responder grants.

Thank you for paying attention. Now pass it on.

- January 25, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #2

Former FBI Deputy Director John O'Neill was in charge of the investigations into:

• the bin Laden-connected bombings of the World Trade Center in 1993

• the destruction of an American troop barracks in Saudi Arabia in 1996

• the African Embassy bombings in 1998, and

• the attack upon the USS Cole in 2000 . . .

told French researchers in the summer of 2001:

"The main obstacles to investigate Islamic terrorism were U.S. oil corporate interests, and the role played by Saudi Arabia in it...All the answers, everything needed to dismantle Osama bin Laden's organization, can be found in Saudi Arabia."

In a tragic irony, O'Neill quit the FBI two weeks before 9/11 in disgust over the Bush Administration's refusal to investigate Saudi ties to Al Qaeda and went to work as head of security at the World Trade Center, where he was killed in the attack.

- January 28, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #3

On June 2, 2003, the Federal Communications Commission by a 3-2 vote (3 Bush appointees, one of which is Commissioner Michael Powell, the son of Secretary of State Colin Powell), and with the White House’s endorsement, swept aside checks and balances developed over six decades. A series of bills, threatened vetoes, court orders, lobbying, secret meetings, votes, and broken promises ensued, resulting in the passage of the change of rules by Congress as 24 lines in the middle of the huge omnibus spending bill that passed January 22, 2004.

The two companies which benefited most from the final version of the rule changes are Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation, and Viacom, which owns CBS.

Two weeks ago, CBS refused to air a 30-sec ad from liberal online activist group during today’s Super Bowl.

According to Boston Globe, "'s 30-second ad, which has aired on CNN, is a gentle yet powerful depiction of how hard today's children will have to work to pay off the country's mounting deficit.”

28 members of the House of Representatives wrote a letter to CBS which stated, "The choice not to run this paid advertisement appears to be part of a disturbing pattern on CBS's part to bow to the wishes of the Republican National Committee.”

Or vice versa. The Bush 2000 campaign received $1,070,728 from media companies, more than any single campaign in history. But . . .

YOU CAN STILL SEE THE AD! During the Super Bowl half time show, at 8:10 and 8:35pm EST, switch over to CNN to watch the ad CBS won’t air.

- February 1, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #4

On Thursday, January 15, 2004, long-planned memorial celebrations for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Atlanta had to be completely changed because Bush came to town for a photo-op at Dr. King’s gravesite. His appearance brought protests and vocal demonstrators who realized what an election year gimmick it was (he had ignored invitations on previous years), especially as he left the King Center and headed straight over to his $1.3 million campaign fund-raiser.

Their belief in his insincerity was verified the very next day when Bush used the last day of Congressional recess to push through the appointment of Charles Pickering to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit.

Senate Democrats had previously successfully blocked Pickering’s nomination, due to his anti-civil rights “activist judge” ways. Their example had been the judge’s effort in 1994 to reduce the sentence of a man convicted of burning a cross near the home of an interracial couple.

Other concerns they had included: efforts against the Voting Rights Act, 15 reversals of his judgments regarding constitutional, civil rights, criminal procedure and labor issues, and his severe criticisms of civil rights plaintiffs.

So Bush chose to use the Martin Luther King holiday weekend to do a recess appointment, ignoring the will of Congress.

It should be noted that on Dr. King’s birthday last year, Bush came out against the University of Michigan Law School affirmative action program.

- February 6, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #5

This morning on “Meet the Press”, as well as many other times, we heard Bush defend his attacking Iraq, by pointing out that Saddam Hussein had to be removed. After all, he “used weapons against his own people.”

But Bush never elaborates on that any further. There’s a reason.

He never includes the fact that the attack he’s speaking of occurred in August 1988, when Saddam used chemical weapons against Iraqi Kurds at Halabja on the Iranian border. Nor does he state that the chemical weapons were dispensed using the helicopters Reagan’s administration supplied in 1983.

On December 20, 1983, Donald Rumsfeld (a civilian then, now our Secretary of Defense) personally delivered a hand-written note from Ronald Reagan to Saddam Hussein to assure him of U.S. friendship and materials support and to restore diplomatic relations.

Beginning October 1, 1984 and ending either on November 28, 1989 or October 13, 1993 (both long past the attack on the Kurds), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with the approval of Ronald Reagan and later George H.W. Bush, provided anthrax, bubonic plague and botulinum toxin to Iraq.

According to the House Committee on Government Operations Report "Strengthening the Export License System," up until the day Iraq invaded Kuwait in 1990, the Bush administration [the father] approved of $4.8 million in advanced technology product sales to Iraq, the end-user being Iraq's Ministry of Industry and Military Industrialization, identified in 1988 to be the facility for Iraq's chemical, biological and nuclear weapons programs.

So, the next time you hear Bush say that Saddam had to be removed because he "used weapons against his own people," remember that he's leaving out that Reagan, with Rumsfeld's help, supplied the helicopters and gas, and that even after that slaughter, Bush's father continued to supply Saddam with weapons and technology.

If you have trouble believing this, go to Google and type in "Kurds +1988 +chemical weapons +Reagan" and see what's there.

- February 9, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #6

Harken Energy, a small oil company with no previous experience in international or offshore drilling, won a 35-year exploration contract with the emirate of Bahrain in the Persian Gulf in 1989. Odd, since this small company had no previous experience in international or offshore drilling But it did have George Bush as a Director and major stockholder since 1986, when Harken bought another one of his many money-losing ventures, Spectrum 7 Oil.

"His name was George Bush," said Harken's founder, Phil Hendrick. "That was worth the money."

But not really. Harken soon began to lose money, too, but with the help of its accounting firm, Arthur Anderson, the shareholders were kept unaware of the losses because of a sale (on paper) of a Harken subsidiary to another division of Harken, with a cooked-up loan to and from itself, resulting in non-existent profits being posted.

The subsidiary sale was declared bogus by the SEC, but before a corrected profit-and-loss statement was released, Bush dumped $848,560.00 worth of Harken stock. With that money, Bush was able to buy into the Texas Rangers baseball team, and eventually earned $16 million from its sale because of the financial bonuses written into the contract by James Doty, his personal lawyer.

Meanwhile the Harken stock collapsed.

An investigation by the SEC ensued in 1991 when it was discovered that Bush had not, as required, reported his sale of the stocks until 8 months after the federal deadline. But by then, that same James Doty, Bush's lawyer, was the SEC's General Counsel, in charge of any litigation the commission would initiate, and President George H.W. Bush (I) had appointed old family friend and former economic advisor Richard Breeden to the position of Chairman of the SEC.

The investigation was dropped.

When Bush ran for governor of Texas in 1994, he repeatedly told reporters he had been "exonerated" by the SEC, as did his Press Secretary Ari Fleischer in 2002. But while the SEC officially said "there was no case there," a letter to Bush announcing the agency's decision stated that the end of the probe "must in no way be construed as indicating that the party has been exonerated."

To verify this information and learn more, Google "Doty +Breeden +Harken".

- February 13, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #7

This story is particularly frightening because it's been so well hidden.

Three weeks after the 2000 election, while the results were still up in the air, Greg Palast, an American reporter for the BBC and the Guardian of London, reported that in the months leading up to the November 2000 balloting, Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris (who was also George Bush's Florida campaign manager), in coordination with Governor Jeb Bush (George's brother), ordered local elections supervisors to purge 57,700 names from voter registries.

These names were removed because they were supposedly felons who, according to Florida law, may not vote. However, in review, 90.2% of the voters purged from this list were innocent. Their names were listed in error, and never verified. It should be noted that 54% were Black and Hispanic voters, and 90% were Democrat.

Remember, Bush supposedly won Florida, and thus the country, by only 537 votes.

When this report came out in England, CBS contacted Greg Palast, eager to run a version of the story. The next day, the CBS producer called Palast back. "I'm sorry, but your story didn't hold up." Palast asked why he thought that. Simple, "We called Jeb Bush's office."

To verify and look further at this story, Google "Palast +Harris +felon".

- February 16, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #8

In the Spring of 2000, the battle for ergonomic regulations, to protect workers from the damaging effects of heavy, repetitive production line work, had its final 47 days of hearings before the Department of Labor. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) provided the frightening results of years of investigation: 1.8 million American workers disabled by injuries caused by physical stress on the job each year.

Vehemently arguing against the regulations was Eugene Scalia, "the Godfather of the anti-ergonomics movement." For seven years, he'd lead a high-profile attack against ergonomics, claiming it was founded on "junk science" created by doctors, reporters and hysterical workers.

Even with the approval of the Department of Labor, bureaucracy takes time, and it took a last minute order from President Clinton to list the rules in the Federal Register so the Ergonomics Program Standard would become a part of the OSHA Code of Federal Regulations.

Then came Bush.

Determined to get rid of this expensive problem for the business community, Bush pushed for a Congressional Review which could overturn an executive order that had been on the books less than 60 days. So, with the backing of the new White House administration, on April 23, 2001, the rules that had been 12 years in the making were wiped out.

Seven months later, Bush appointed Eugene Scalia to the position of Solicitor of the Department of Labor, in charge of enforcing federal workplace laws. Congress refused to confirm the appointment, so Bush "recessed" Scalia in, installing him in office while Congress was adjourned, twice.

It should be noted that Eugene Scalia is the son of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, one of the five Supreme Court Justices who put Bush in office. Eugene Scalia had been a partner in the law firm that represented George Bush in that argument before the Supreme Court.

To verify this information, Google "Eugene Scalia +ergonomics +Department of Labor".

- February 19, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #9

On Monday, January 22, 2001, Bush's first action, on his first working day in office, was to issue an executive memorandum banning U.S. federal funding for any international organization family-planning clinic that mentions -- not performs but mentions -- the word abortion.

This action prohibited recipients of federal funds from providing abortion counseling or information regarding the availability of abortions, even in countries where abortions are legal, and even when abortion services are paid for by non-U.S. funds.

Clinics in Eastern Europe, Asia, and Africa had to close, leaving women without any health care, leading to a further spread of AIDS, and causing even more abortions because of more unwanted pregnancies.

The following year, in January 2002, he eliminated U.S. funding for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) under the pretense that the program may fund or advocate abortion. In fact, the UNFPA prevented abortions and saved lives by providing family planning services in 156 countries, as well as HIV and sexual violence prevention, maternal care, emergency disaster relief, and teaching women literacy and income-earning skills. UN officials estimated the loss of funding from the U.S. would undermine their ability to prevent 800,000 abortions and could result in the deaths of 4,700 women and 77,000 children.

This international funding issue had not come up during his campaign. It came as a complete surprise.

To verify this information, Google "global gag rule +January +Bush".

- February 22, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #10

Last Friday, February 20th, he did it again. Late in the afternoon, at the end of a week-long Congressional recess, Bush appointed Alabama Attorney General William Pryor to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. Once again, he "recessed-in" a controversial ultra-conservative judge who could not get the support of the Senate.

And for good reasons.

When 36 state attorneys general urged the Supreme Court to uphold the Violence Against Women Act, Pryor alone argued that the law was unconstitutional.

He submitted a brief supporting Texas's law criminalizing gay sex.

He testified in favor of repealing a key part of the Voting Rights Act.

He urged the Supreme Court to take away the rights of 5 million state employees to sue under the Family and Medical Leave Act.

Perhaps most interesting (and least reported) is his founding of the Republican Attorneys General Association, an organization which actively solicited campaign contributions for its members from industries that were at risk for large state lawsuits (such as firearms, paints, and tobacco), and laundered the money through a Republican PAC to conceal the identities of its donors.

To curb "lawsuit abuse," Pryor said before the Civil Justice Reform Group in 1999, "the business community must be engaged heavily in the election process as it affects legal and judicial offices."

Critics have charged that Pryor's RAGA effectively sells protection from state litigation.

Austin, Texas RAGA conference participants who contributed at least $5,000 were originally scheduled to attend an opening reception at then - Governor Bush's state mansion. But the event was cancelled the day that reporters questioned Bush's office about RAGA's stealth fundraising tactics.

To verify/research, Google: "Pryor +recess."

- February 25, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #11

On September 11, 2001, the best scientists in the world on toxicity/air testing were busy in Libby, Wyoming investigating the damages of asbestos and vermiculite from the Grace Corporation in that community, when the World Trade Towers were attacked, collapsed, and filled the New York air with glass fibers, concrete dust, fiberglass, asbestos, mercury, PCBs, lead, benzene, fire and smoke. These scientists were certain they would be asked to come test the air around Ground Zero.

But no such thorough testing was requested.

Early on September 12, Christine Todd Whitman, the Bush-appointed head of the Environmental Protection Agency, issued a memo throughout the agency: "All statements to the media should be cleared through the National Security Council before they are released."

According to a 165-page report from the Inspector General of the EPA released in August 2003, under pressure from the White House and the NSC (Bush's top cabinet members), "reassuring information was added" and "cautionary information was deleted" from the official EPA press releases. Warnings and safety recommendations were removed while statements of encouragement to get back to such activities as business and shopping were emphasized.

By September 16, the public was told, "Ambient air quality meets OSHA standards and consequently is not a cause for public concern," and on September 18, Christine Todd Whitman officially announced that the air in lower Manhattan was "safe to breathe."

The impact of the government's lies is evident for the 78 percent of tens of thousands of WTC rescue, recovery and cleanup workers who suffer serious lung ailments, the 88 percent who have ear, nose and throat problems, or the approximately 500 NYC fire fighters who remain out of work on disability because of lung and organ problems, most of whom are expected never to return to work.

The August 2003 report indicates that the agency was essentially hijacked by the Bush administration and its National Security Council, and that "final approval came from the White House."

To verify/research this information, Google: "Ground Zero +Whitman +asbestos +Bush".

February 28, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #12

On Friday, March 3, officially beginning his election campaign, Bush addressed "The White House Conference on Faith-Based and Community Initiatives" where he proudly reported a 41% increase in Health & Human Services grants (from $477 million to $568 million) in 2003.

Expanding faith-based initiatives has always been (or at least since his conversion) a major focus for Bush. As the Governor of Texas, he personally pushed through the Legislature the Texas Religious Freedom Restoration Act, requiring the state government to demonstrate a "compelling interest" before interfering with any religious group or practice, and use a "least restrictive means" test when enforcing regulations. This allowed the Texas Association for Christian Child Care Agencies to "license" faith-based social services which were not held to professional training standards, criminal background checks, or other regulatory conditions.

With this in place, Roloff's Homes returned to Texas in 1999. This organization was created by Lester Roloff, a powerful radio evangelist out of Corpus Christi, Texas, who barnstormed around Texas in his single-engine Cessna, preaching and stumping for Karl Rove's gubernatorial candidate, "Brother Bill" Clements. A few years later, Roloff, a reckless flier who believed "the touch of an unseen hand" would bring him back safely to earth, no matter the weather, flew into the hereafter, taking 4 young singers from his choir with him.

His replacement at his Roloff's Homes for wayward boys, girls, and women (what - no men?) was the Reverend Wiley Cameron. Under Cameron, Roloff's Homes were under investigation by State Attorney General John Hill. Apparently, the Biblical model of discipline ("Withhold not correction from this child, for if thou beatest him with the rod, he shall not die") was going too far. By the mid-80s, Cameron packed up and left for friendlier grounds in Missouri, where John Ashcroft was Attorney General and later Governor.

Bush's Religious Freedom Restoration Act made it safe to return. But old habits of righteousness are dangerous, and while Bush was campaigning for President, Cameron was convicted after a young girl was bound with duct tape, kicked in the ribs, and locked in solitary for 32 hours of taped Roloff's sermons and two boys were abused to the point of "torture".

The other huge benefactor of the new Texas law was Teen Challenge, a Bible-based drug program, run by Henry Lozano. By the time Mr. Lozano was an invited guest visibly sitting right behind Laura Bush at the 2003 State of the Union address, there was a 49-page report in the office of the Texas Freedom Network, an advocacy group monitoring extremist evangelicals, on the almost complete lack of compliance with basic safety requirements, such as first aid & CPR training, faulty electrical outlets, gas lines, and smoke alarms.

To veryify/research, Google "Roloff +Bush +Religious Freedom".

- March 4, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #13

In 1995, a Pakistani terrorist linked to bin Laden was arrested in the Phillipines and admitted plans to fly a plane into a U.S. federal building.

In 1998, terrorism analysts briefed the Federal Aviation Administration on the possibility of terrorists crashing planes into such targets as the World Trade Tower, the Pentagon, the Capitol, and other targets.

In January 2001, prior to leaving the White House, President Clinton and his security team warned Bush and his team that Al Queda and its sleeper cells in the U.S. were the major security threat facing the U.S.

On April 18, the Federal Aviation Administration issued an advisory warning for U.S. carriers to "demonstrate a high degree of alertness."

On June 26, the State Department issued a worldwide caution to Americans traveling or living abroad. The National Security Agency's ECHELON electronic spy network gave warning that Mideast terrorists were planning to hijack commercial aircraft to use as weapons to attack important symbols of American culture.

On July 5, NSA Counter-Terrorism Chief Richard Clarke reported to the White House, "Something really spectacular is going to happen here, and it's going to happen soon." Bush was warned that bin Laden was about to mount a major attack.

Bush went on vacation in Crawford, Texas for the entire month of August.

Bush's Cabinet-rank advisors didn't hold their first meeting on terrorism until September 4, 2001.

Because Bush failed to increase the Air Defense readiness levels, when the 2nd plane hit the World Trade Center on September 11, the nearest approaching fighter jet was still seventy miles away.

To verify/research, Google: "September 11 +Bush +warn +planes"

- March 8, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #14

One of every four Americans lives within 3 miles of a toxic waste site. Bush included in his 2004 budget a plan to generate money for the depleting EPA Superfund trust.

By 2002, the $3.3 billion that was left in 1995 was down to $100 million, because the tax collected for the Superfund clean ups from the chemical industry was stopped in 1995 as part of Newt Gingrich’s "Contract on America."

So that year, Bush’s appointee, Christine Whitman, de-funded 89 Superfund cites in 13 states, including a New Jersey site where a residential neighborhood had developed around a deserted plant where the herbicide Agent Orange was mixed and disposed, where the green-yellow watered drainage ditches empty into a brook that flows past a McDonalds hamburger bun bakery.

But now, Bush is willing to do something about it. He’s included it in his budget. The money will come from "general revenues" - that means the taxpayers. Not the polluters. Nor those who have benefitted by far the most from the tax cuts. Meanwhile, the chemical corporations have saved over $9 billion since 1995, or roughly $4 million per day.

In 1994, Monsanto, Dow, and Union Carbide wrote the checks that put Bush in the Texas Governor’s Mansion.

To verify/research, Google "Superfund +Bush".

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- March 13, 2004
Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:
Know Bush Fact #15

Forty-eight hours before ordering U.S. troops into Iraq a year ago, Bush told the American people, "There’s no certainty in war but the certainty of sacrifice."

For some.

In the spring of 1997, while serving as Mobilization Plans Officer for the Texas National Guard at the state headquarters in Austin, Texas, Ret. Lt. Col. Bill Burkett came to the office of Adjutant General Daniel James to ask a question.

The door was open about 8 inches and Burkett could hear the voice of Joe M. Allbaugh, then-Governor Bush’s chief of staff, on the speakerphone. The General and Allbaugh were discussing sanitizing Bush’s records in preparation for Karen Hughes' official biography in preparation for Bush's re-election campaign. Burkett heard Allbaugh tell General James, "We certainly don’t want anything that is embarrassing in there."

Ten days later, Chief Warrant Officer George Conn, in whom he'd confided, walked Burkett over to a remote room in the museum on base where the head of the museum, General John Scribner, was sitting at a folding table with a 15-gallon trashcan next to him, going through papers. Looking down, Burkett saw 20-40 pages of performance documents in the can. At the top of the pages he could see was the "Bush, George W., 1LT."

Joe M. Allbaugh was appointed by Bush to be the Director of FEMA where he stayed until March 2003, when the war began. He is now Chairman and Director of New Bridge Strategies, LLC, a company created to assist businesses in getting the lucrative contracts in "rebuilding" Iraq.

Adjutant General Daniel James was nominated by Bush on September 20, 2001 to be Director of the Air National Guard, where he has been serving since June 2002.

To research/verify, Google "Bush +Guard +Trash."

- March 17, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #16

On the eve of the March 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq, the Bush administration issued the following directive through the Pentagon:

"There will be no arrival ceremonies for, or media coverage of, deceased military personnel returning to or departing from Ramstein (Germany) air base or Dover base."

The Dover Air Base is the location of the largest Defense Department mortuary for the remains of soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines.

Defense Department spokeswoman Lt. Col. Cynthia Colin stated that the ban on media coverage stemmed from a respect for the families, "to protect their wishes and privacy during the time of greatest loss and grief." Though the "Dover policy" has existed since its creation by George H. W. Bush during the first Gulf War, it went unheeded by the Clinton administration.

"This year," Lt. Col. Colin said in late 2003, "we've really tried to enforce it."

To further sanitize the repercussions of the war, today's military doesn't even use the words "body bags" - a familiar term from the Vietnam War. During Bush's father's 1991 Gulf War, the Pentagon began calling them "human remains pouches."

Now, under Bush, the term for the returning dead is "transfer tubes."

To verify/research, Google: "Bush +Dover +directive."

- April 20, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #17

Despite Bush’s pushing for invasion of Iraq specifically because Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and was actively developing a nuclear weapons program, Bush and the Pentagon failed to make a serious, high-priority attempt to locate and secure the WMDS or the catalogued nuclear research sites.

Two days after U.S. forces gained control of Iraq on April 9, a good three weeks after invading, Rumsfield said "When there happens to be a weapon of mass destruction suspect site in an area that we occupy and if people have time, they’ll look at it."

One of the greatest dangers was that the nuclear materials known to exist could get in the hands of terrorists.

In mid April, the International Atomic Energy Agency found the U.S. forces had done nothing to secure Iraq’s major nuclear sites, and requested they move quickly to do so, specifically emphasizing concern for the Tuwaitha Nuclear Research facility.

By April 25, The Washington Post reported that Defense officials couldn’t say if the vast nuclear repository’s deadly contents had been stolen, because they hadn’t dispatched investigators to the site yet. The Pentagon and U.S. Central Command was aware at that time that Tuwaitha, only 11 miles from Baghdad, lay unguarded for days and that looters had been inside.

Five other nuclear facilities were looted as well. Files and containers were missing, barrels containing radioactive material were dumped and for three weeks locals drank and bathed in water containing radioactive material.

Finally, in June, the U.S. and IAEA secured Tuwaitha. While much of the missing material was eventually found and purchased back, there is no way of knowing in whose hands the remaining radioactive materials landed.

High-ranking U.S. officials had to acknowledge that the war that was supposed to make us safer, may prove to have aggravated the proliferation threat Bush said he fought to forestall.

To verify/research, Google: IAEA +Tuwaitha.

- March 30, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #18

While the spotlight is focused on the heightened drama of gay marriage, the Bush administration is withdrawing protection for federal employees from discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Last year, Bush nominated Scott Bloch as head of the U.S. Office of the Special Counsel, to start in January 2004. Mr. Bloch is the former Deputy Director of the Justice Department’s Task Force for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives. He was a research fellow for the Claremont Institute, an ultra-conservative think tank in California which boasts of "fighting the gay rights initiative." He has hired at least two religious conservative advocates to his staff and offered the #2 post at the OSC to Prof. Robert Carlson of Casper College, Wyoming, known for helping to form an anti-gay campus group.

In February 2004, Bloch removed from the OSC’s printed documents, training slide show, and website all references to discrimination based on sexual orientation in the workforce being illegal.

Bloch doesn’t believe the 1978 law, intended to protect federal employees and job applicants from adverse personnel actions taken against them for reasons unrelated to their job performance, has to be applied to discrimination based on sexual orientation — as it has since 1999.

Bloch argues that there is a distinction between one’s conduct as a gay or lesbian and one’s status as a gay or lesbian. "Someone may have jumped to the conclusion that conduct equals sexual orientation, but they are essentially very different. One is a class... and one is a behavior," Bloch said in a March 10 interview with Federal Times.

Bloch does not equate conduct based on sexual orientation with sexual orientation itself. Such a link would mean gays, lesbians and bisexuals are covered as a protected class, even though they are not protected under the nation’s civil rights laws.

Bloch’s predecessor at the OSC, Washington attorney Elaine Kaplan, called his reading of the law, "dead wrong."

"A member of George Bush's administration is altering decades of federal employment policy based on some of the shoddiest legal reasoning I have seen in my professional career," said Rep. Elliot L. Engel, New York Democrat, in a press conference.

To verify/search, Google: Bush +Bloch +gay

- April 2, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #19

With many states rejecting Bush’s "No Child Left Behind Act," it is worth learning who benefits from it.

McGraw-Hill is the big winner. "President Bush knows students can succeed if they are using the best materials, proven lesson plans and textbooks aligned with state standards," says the NCLB website under "Investing in What Works."

McGraw-Hill happens to provide all the above materials, and more.

"Education President" Bush promotes Phonics as the best method for teaching reading. Two major phonics courses, "Direct Instruction" and "Open Court Reading," are both published by McGraw-Hill.

McGraw-Hill authors also wrote the official summary of the report of the National Reading Panel presented to explain No Child Left Behind to educators. However, there were important discrepancies between the original report of the National Reading Panel, and their summary.

To wit, the McGraw Hill summary, reviewing the "scientific research" of the NRP stated, "Systematic phonics instruction produces significant benefits for students in kindergarten through sixth grade." The actual NRP report stated, "There were insufficient data to draw any conclusions about the effects of phonics instruction with normally developing readers above first grade."

Apparently McGraw-Hill itself needs further tutoring in comprehensive reading.

Gerald Coles, author of Reading Lessons: The Debate Over Literacy, notes that with phonics, "To cure illiteracy, presumably all children need is a new set of textbooks."

Leading us back to McGraw Hill, textbook publisher.

McGraw-Hill also happens to produce the worksheets, standardized tests, the accountability system in charge of research, development, scoring, reporting, tracking, intervention programs, and the remedial initiatives that are now officially a part of the No Child Left Behind Act, as well as a new website as a school evaluation service.

In addition, McGraw-Hill goes far beyond basic publishing and education, with divisions specializing in homeland security, international investing, and consultation on outsourcing, serving "more than one million professionals within the $3.4 trillion global construction community" and more.

Not surprisingly, the McGraw family and the Bush family go way back, to the 1930's, when great-grandfather Prescott Bush vacationed with James McGraw, Jr at Jupiter Island, Florida, a haven for moneyed people from the Northeast. Through the years since, the back rubbing has been mutual: reflected in board memberships, awards, endorsements, keynote addresses, executive employment, presidential appointments, transition teams, ambassadorships, global marketing and the United Nations.

In March 2003, as the U.S. pre-emptively invaded Iraq, McGraw-Hill published Team Bush: Leadership Lessons from the Bush White House.

McGraw-Hill is certainly benefitting.

To verify/research, Google "Bush +McGraw."

– April 8, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #20

In 2003, promoting his tax cuts, Bush said, "These tax reductions will bring real and immediate benefits to middle income Americans. Ninety-two million Americans will keep an average of $1,083 more of their own money."

However, according to such organizations as The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, The Urban Brookings Institute Tax Policy Center, Citizens for Tax Justice, and many other analysts, these numbers were concocted via mathematical calculations that reveal the unreliability of the word "average".

For example, you take a group of ten people: 9 are unemployed and 1 makes $1,000,000; mathematically you can calculate the average income to be $100,000. It is a number that has nothing to do with truth. This is the same mathematical method that ends with the great-sounding numbers Bush uses to sell his tax cuts.

In actuality that $1083 "average" sits above 80 percent of those filing taxes. The top 20% would make that much and lots more. 80% would receive less than $1083. 50% would get less than $100.

To verify/research, Google "Bush +$1083."

- April 13, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #21

Two years ago, on Earth Day, Robert Martin, National Ombudsman of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response) for over nine years, resigned.

The Ombudsman’s job was to stand apart from the EPA and perform independent investigations of complaints from citizens to ensure that the EPA remained accountable and true to its mission of protecting human health and the environment, particularly in cleaning up toxic sites.

Even before Bush was in office, Bob Martin was investigating an EPA deal made with Citigroup and one of its several toxic waste sites, Shattuck Chemical Company site in Denver’s Overland Park.

Then Bush arrived, and appointed Christine Todd Whitman, whose husband John Whitman is a top investment manager for Citigroup, to the position of Director of the EPA. As Martin’s investigation grew to question the obvious conflict of interest here, Ms. Whitman turned on him and announced that his previously independent office would be closed and he would be moved into the office of the EPA Inspector General, under the authority of . . . the Director of the EPA, Christine Todd Whitman.

In the spirit of the Bush opposite-meaning philosophy, Ms. Whitman said, "The General Accounting Office report recommended that the Agency ‘take steps to strengthen the independence' of the ombudsman. By relocating the position to the Office of the Inspector General we are doing just that."

While Martin was out of town on business, she had his files seized and his locks changed. He no longer had access to his files on the Citigroup/Shattuck/Whitman connection. The EPA declared that he no longer had any defined duties and would be stripped of his title.

No longer able to help those he cared about, he resigned.

There is no longer a truly independent Ombudsman for the EPA. The Bush policies that favor industry deals and questionable science are rubber stamped, and calls from residents of toxic neighborhoods are ignored.

Meanwhile, there are pictures of Bush in the wetlands for Earth Day.

To verify/research, Google: "Martin +ombudsman."

- April 23, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #22

"The corporations don’t have to lobby the government anymore. They are the government." - Jim Hightower, former Texas Agriculture Commissioner.

For example:

Bush’s Chief Strategist, Karl Rove, was a lobbyist for Phillip Morris from 1991 to 1996.

Andrew Card, Bush’s White House Chief of Staff, was chief lobbyist for General Motors and head of American Automobile Manufacturers Association.

Thomas A. Scully, President of the Federation of American Hospital Group, lobbying for 1700 for-profit hospitals, became Bush’s Chief Administrator for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, part of the Department of Health and Human Services, until he resigned in December 2003, just after Bush’s Medicare Bill was forced through Congress.

Mitchell E. Daniels Jr. was Bush's Office of Management and Budget Director until recently. Prior to that he was a lobbyist for Eli Lilly Pharmaceutical for 13 years.

James Connaughton, Bush’s Chairman of the Council on Environmental Quality, previously lobbied on behalf of ASARCO Inc., Atlantic Richfield, Aluminum Co. of America, Chemical Manufacturers Association, and General Electric (focusing especially on Superfund toxic sites).

J. Steven Griles, Bush’s Deputy Interior Secretary, is known as one of the energy industry’s most powerful lobbyists. He was a lobbyist for United Company (a coal, oil, and gas development firm), and was also the former Vice President of National Environmental Strategies, representing the National Mining Association and Occidental Petroleum.

Rebecca W. Watson, long-time lobbyist and attorney for the extractive industries, was named Bush's Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Management in the Department of the Interior.

William G. Myers, III served as lobbyist for the National Mining Association, the Public Lands Council and the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, then became Bush’s Chief Solicitor for the Interior Department. This year Bush nominated him for a seat on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, the appellate court that hears cases from Alaska and the American West, where environmental law concerning 485 million acres of public lands is decided.

Bush made Nicholas Calio his Legislative Affairs Director. Calio spent the 90s lobbying for Anheuser-Busch, the Boeing Corp., AT&T, Atlantic Richfield Company, BP Amoco, and Tenneco Automotive, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of automobile exhaust systems. Calio’s top deputy at the White House, Kirsten Ardleigh Chadwick, was also a registered lobbyist for Tenneco.

Monsanto, manufacturer of such food additives as the controversial bovine growth hormone, BST, used to have to lobby the Secretary of Agriculture. Then Monsanto executive Ann Venamin became Bush’s Secretary of Agriculture through April 2003.

Linda J. Fisher was Bush’s Deputy Director of the Environmental Protection Agency until she resigned in June 2003, just one day before her boss, Christie Todd Whitman, did the same. Previously, Ms. Fisher was Monsanto’s Vice President for Government and Public Affairs, lobbying on behalf of Monsanto’s interests on agriculture, biotechnology, pharmaceutical, environment, finance and trade issues, and managing the company’s political action committee and political contribution funds.

A former top lobbyist for private banks engaged in student lending, William D. Hansen, was Bush’s Deputy Secretary at the Education Department until July 2003.

Bush picked Texan James C. Oberwetter, of Hunt Consolidated Inc. and the American Petroleum Institute, an oil industry lobby group, to be U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

And last but not least...

In December, 2001, Bush named Marc Racicot, a lobbyist whose clients included Enron Corp, railroad giant Burlington Northern Santa Fe and the Recording Industry Association of America, to be Chairman of the Republican National Committee. In June 2003, Bush chose Mr. Racicot to be the Chairman of the Bush-Cheney Re-Election Campaign.

Bush replaced Racicot as Chairman of the Republican National Committee with Ed Gillespie, whose lobbying firm raked in $27.4 million from 2000 through 2002 working for a list of clients that includes Microsoft, Tyson Foods, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Viacom. Before its collapse, Enron paid Gillespie’s firm $700,000 to lobby against the "re-regulation" of Western electricity markets.

To verify/research, Google "Bush +lobbyist."
- May 1, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #23 A

Bush’s Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld received a letter from Amnesty International dated JANUARY 10, 2002 (with copies also sent to Secretary of State Colin Powell, FBI Director Robert Mueller, CIA Director George Tenet, and Commander in Chief General Tommy Franks), expressing concern over photographs showing Al-Qaeda suspects hooded while under guard by US troops, and pointing out that the United Nations Committee against Torture had condemned the hooding of suspects, and that such treatment is also covered by the Geneva Convention.

To research/verify, Google "Rumsfeld +hooding."

And #23 B

On September 11, 2001, Bush’s Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld was not in Washington D.C. He was out of the country with Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, Douglas Feith, and William Luti, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Plans and Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs, and four other like-minded advisors. They were "busy on unrelated missions in Europe and the Middle East."

Upon their return, Donald Rumsfeld commissioned a team, headed by that same Douglas Feith and William Luti, to scan and sort already-analyzed documents from the CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency, and other intelligence agencies to consider possible interpretations and angles of analysis that these agencies may have missed. Much of the information scanned had already been deemed "not credible" by the experienced intelligence agencies.

Eventually Rumsfeld’s team came to be named The Office of Special Plans.

Staffed by a tight group of like-minded neo-conservatives who advocated regime change in Iraq, the Office of Special Plans displaced the CIA and the Pentagon’s own Defense Intelligence Agency as Bush’s main source of intelligence regarding Iraq’s possible possession of weapons of mass destruction and connection with Al-Qaeda.

It was "the stovepipe" - a means of funneling upward directly to the White House and National Security Advisor selectively chosen intelligence to serve the ideological ends of the "neo-cons" in the Bush administration.

"They’d take a little bit of intelligence, cherry-pick it, make it sound much more exciting, usually by taking it out of context, often by juxtaposition of two pieces of information that don’t belong together," wrote retired Pentagon Middle East specialist, Air Force Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatkowski, who worked in the office of Undersecretary for Defense for Policy Douglas Feith.

She found the work of the Office of Special Plans to be "a subversion of constitutional limits on executive power and a co-option through deceit of a large segment of the Congress."

Which resulted in Congress giving Bush the authority to use military force against Iraq.

To research/verify, Google "Rumsfeld +Office of Special Plans".

- May 9, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:
Know Bush Fact #24

On June 26, 2001 the State Department issued a worldwide caution to Americans traveling or living abroad. The National Security Agency’s ECHELON electronic spy network gave warning that Mideast terrorists were planning to hijack commercial aircraft to use as weapons to attack important symbols of American culture.

That same month, the Bush Administration initiated the VISA EXPRESS service for expediting visa applications through out Saudi Arabia. On June 25, 2001, the day before the State Department’s warning, the US Embassy in Riyadh proudly announced:

"Now all Saudis and non-Saudi applicants may obtain visas at their own convenience by submitting their applications through any of ten designated travel/courier companies operating throughout the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. . . Applicants will no longer have to take time off from work, no longer have to wait in long lines under the hot sun and in crowded waiting rooms, and no longer be limited by any time constraints. Effective immediately, ALL APPLICANTS will be expected to use the US VISA EXPRESS service offered by any of the selected companies listed below."

To make this very clear, under this new rule instituted by the Bush Administration, both Saudis and non-Saudis could obtain U.S. visas without being photographed or having to apply in person just by going through one of ten designated travel agencies in The Kingdom.

Three of the Saudi hijackers in the September 11 attacks came into the U.S. on visas they obtained through the VISA EXPRESS program.

Still, the Visa Express program was not closed after September 11. In fact, in the first 30 days after 9/11, the U.S. Embassy at Jeddah, one of three offices in Saudi Arabia, issued 104 visas through the program, denying none.

It was not until Joel Mowbray, a journalist from The National Review, broke the story in June of 2002, pointing out that the Visa Express program was still in place, that the State Department found it necessary to make some changes.

Secretary of State Colin Powell asked Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs, Ambassador Mary Ryan, the longest-serving career diplomat at the department, "to retire," announcing this change on the same day when two committees in Congress would be voting on legislation to remove the State Department’s visa authority.

Two days later, after questioning spokesman Richard Boucher at a State Department press briefing, Joel Mowbray was detained for about 30 minutes, as security demanded he reveal his sources. Yet a year after 9/11, the State Department had still not interviewed the single Foreign Service Officer in the Jeddah consulate who issued 10 of the visas to the Saudi hijackers.

To research/verify, Google "Bush +Visa Express."
- May 14, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #25

On April 24, 2003, while promoting his tax plan, Bush stopped in Canton, Ohio at the Timken Company, a Fortune 500 company, with 2003 sales of $3.8 billion, to speak before the workers at its steel ball-bearing manufacturing plant:

"The greatest strength of the American economy is found right here, right in this room, found in the pride and skill of the American work force. . . Here at Timken, last year, productivity rose 10 percent. Which means that America can compete with any nation in the world because we got the finest workers in the world."

On May 17, 2004, century-old Timken Company announced it was closing the doors to three of its ball-bearing plants in Canton, laying off 1,300 employees.

Timken President James W. Griffith tried to blame the closure on the United Steel Workers of America, but union President Stan Jasionowski said the USWA and Timken were not in any kind of contract negotiations. The union was blindsided by Timken's decision.

Timken’s ball-bearing production will be moved. It is timely that two new Timken NSK ball-bearing plants in China began production in January, and the Randleman, North Carolina plant failed to unionize in February.

W.R. "Tim" Timken, Chairman of the Board of Timken Company, whose decision it was to close the plants, earned more than $2.6 million last year, and stands to receive $59,000 in new tax breaks from Bush this year. By contrast, 89% of Ohio residents will receive less than $100 by 2006 from the latest Bush tax cuts.

Last summer, Timken co-hosted a fundraiser for Bush's campaign which raised $600,000, and earned Timken "Ranger" status in Bush’s multi-level marketing donation pyramid structure.

W.R. Timken was signed in as the Bush-appointed Chairman of the Board of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation on April 22, 2003 (2 days before Bush’s speech at his plant), and is also a long-time Director of Diebold, Inc., manufacturer of the highly controversial electronic voting machines.

A final note: In December 2003, Mr. Timken hosted a $2,000-per-person fundraiser, where he spoke before featured guest Vice President Dick Cheney and an audience of Ohio's wealthiest business and civic leaders. Timken denounced liberal philanthropist Peter Lewis’s multi-million dollar pledge to partially match donations to’s voter fund campaign as an "attempt to buy democracy."

Meanwhile, the Gannett News Service reported that the Cincinnati, Ohio zip code 45243 ranks second only to New York City's 10021 as the most lucrative fundraising neighborhood for Bush, surpassing wealthy communities in Houston, Dallas and even Beverly Hills.

To verify/research, Google: "Bush +Timken."

- May 22, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #26

I apologize up front for the length of this story. It started with a simple "thanks. . . to the efforts of former Secretary of State James Baker . . . ," said by Bush last week, Monday, May 25, 2004, during his televised speech at the U.S. Army War College.

But why, out of the blue, was he thanking former Secretary of State James Baker?

He continued, ". . .many of Iraq's largest creditors have pledged to forgive or substantially reduce Iraqi debt incurred by the former regime."

Perhaps true. However, in fact, there are many other "efforts of former Secretary of State James Baker" for which Bush might offering thanks, going back many years. It was James Baker's law firm, Baker & Botts, that wrote the contract for Bush to purchase the Texas Rangers baseball team, paying it off with the funds from his suddenly dumped shares in Harken Oil in 1990. In 1991, that same lawyer from Baker & Botts, James Doty, was the new General Counsel for the SEC, along with his colleague from Baker & Botts, Richard Breeden, as the President Bush-appointed Chairman, when George W. Bush’s insider trading at Harken Oil was investigated and dropped.

James Baker was also the man Bush called in November 2000, when Florida’s vote came into question, to lead the battle to take the White House. Baker started the spin immediately, declaring that the votes "have not only been counted, they’ve been counted twice" (blatantly untrue), attacking Gore for his "endless challenges to the results" (the recount was required by Florida law), and finally pushing it to the Supreme Court, where he knew there were five Republican appointees who had to answer to no one. Certainly, Bush owes a lifetime of thanks for that.

Baker's enduring value has been as the Senior Counsel for Washington’s Carlyle Group. The Carlyle Group was formed by former ranking Republicans in the early 90's as an investment group which took advantage of the end of the Cold War to buy up defense and intelligence businesses cheaply.

Thanks to James Baker, Bush I was immediately hired by The Carlyle Group after his 1992 re-election defeat to be guest speaker at events where big-time investors knew the value of access to the ex-President and all his contacts, inside both U.S. and foreign governments. Bush I then could take his sizeable "speaking fee" and invest it back into Carlyle subsidiaries for his own personal investment as well. Later, when Bush I’s son took power in Washington, it made access to Bush I, and therefore II, even more advantageous for all involved with Carlyle.

In 2001, The Carlyle Group showed $12 billion in holdings. With multiple contracts in Iraq, this number has grown exponentially, as has Bush I’s stock portfolio in Carlyle. Bush II stands to inherit untold millions/billions from his father now, especially since he made certain the inheritance tax was completely abolished soon after occupying the White House. Thank you, James Baker.

Coincidentally, on September 11, 2001, while the hijacked planes slammed into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, the Carlyle Group was hosting an exclusive conference in Washington, D.C. Among the guests of honor was a valued investor named Shafig bin Laden, brother to Osama. He soon became one of the 140 powerful Saudis that Prince Bandar arranged to have flown out of the country immediately, despite a nation-wide ban on flights, without even being questioned by the FBI or CIA.

Currently, Baker's law firm, Baker & Botts, is defending Saudi Arabia against the trillion dollar lawsuit filed by the families of 9/11 victims. The families’ suit has forced open accounts that reveal the Saudi government’s role in funneling millions of dollars to Islamic charities that are widely suspected of covertly financing Al Qaeda and other international terrorist groups.

Which brings us back to Bush thanking Baker before the whole world last Monday night – because of his efforts "many of Iraq's largest creditors have pledged to forgive or substantially reduce Iraqi debt incurred by the former regime." Sounds good. But...

The U.S. has no right under international law to handle Iraq’s debts. So in December 2003, when Bush announced that Baker would negotiating the restructure of these debts with its foreign investors (while Colin Powell happened to be in the hospital in surgery), it was said to be "at the request of the Iraqi Governing Council," thus allowing Baker to do his business without answering to Congress or revealing who was paying him.

Thus Bush facilitated Baker’s pre-empting the complete debt write-off the World Bank’s International Bank for Reconstruction and Development was seriously considering.

It’s worth knowing whose money Baker made sure will still have to be at least partially paid back. Most of the debt belongs to his clients, the Saudis, in the $100 billion range. Much of this goes back as far as the 1980s, when both the United States and the Saudis covertly built up Saddam Hussein, giving him technology, biological weapons and training in his war against Iran, back when James Baker was President Reagan’s Treasury Secretary and Chairman of the President’s Economic Policy Council, and Bush I’s Secretary of State.

And so we come full circle.

Thank you, James Baker.

To verify/research, start your Google search with "Bush +Baker". You might want to get a cup of coffee first.

- May 30, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #27

In January 2003, Bush appointed Retired General Jay Garner to serve as Civil Administrator in charge of reconstruction and humanitarian aid in post–Saddam Hussein Iraq.

On April 21, 2003, Garner arrived in Baghdad, stating that his top priority was to restore basic services such as water and electricity. "What better day in your life can you have than to be able to help somebody else, to help other people, and that is what we intend to do." Garner said upon arriving.

Previously, in 1991, Garner helped lead Operation Provide Comfort, which delivered food and shelter to Kurds in northern Iraq after the first Gulf war, and had a reputation within military circles for believing that the military should be used as a "merciful instrument in shaping future humanitarian operations."

On April 28, Garner gathered 250 delegates in Baghdad representing the entire political spectrum of Iraq. It was agreed between the parties that a national conference would be held by the end of May to elect the first post-Hussein Iraqi government.

On 5 May, Jay Garner proudly announced "the beginning of a nucleus of a temporary Iraqi government" would be set up by mid-May.

Bush was not pleased.

The next day, on May 6, Bush announced his appointment of Paul Bremer as the new Presidential Envoy and Senior Coalition official in Iraq. Bremer landed in Iraq on May 12 and took over.

On May 21, Bremer announced that the national conference would not be taking place any time soon.

On May 23, Bremer dissolved the Iraqi Army, causing 400,000 people to lose their jobs. It had been Garner’s plan to utilize these people to rebuild Iraq. Instead, they were unemployed, and angry.

In an interview with Greg Palast which aired on the BBC on March 19, 2004, Garner noted, "I'm a believer that you don't want to end the day with more enemies than you started with."

Clearly different from Bremer, who, according to a former senior State Department official quoted in Newsday, is a "voracious opportunist with voracious ambitions." Previously, Bremer was Henry Kissinger’s assistant in the State Department, and spent 11 years as Managing Director of Kissinger Associates, the powerful international business consulting firm.

At a February 2003 presentation for Cincinnati business leaders, Bremer said, "We're going to be on the ground in Iraq as soldiers and citizens for years. We're going to be running a colony almost." For his Senior Advisor in Iraq, Bremer chose Daniel Senor, previously with The Carlyle Group (the investment company linking former President Bush with the Bin Laden family).

To verify/research, Google "Bremer +Garner."
June 6, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:
Know Bush Fact #28

In June 2002, the Bush administration, through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health (OWH), and the Advertising Council teamed up for a National Breastfeeding Awareness Campaign to encourage first-time mothers to breastfeed exclusively for six months, with PSAs set to air in December 2003.

Unfortunately, the ads, which listed well-researched numbers on increased risk of obesity, diabetes, ear infections, leukemia, diarrhea, asthma and pneumonia, were inadvertently posted on the Ad Council website in November 2003.

That’s when the pharmaceutical companies stepped in.

It turns out that baby formulas such as Similac, Isomil, and Enfamil are produced by pharmaceutical companies, Abbott Laboraties and Bristol Myers Squibb, two of the most powerful members of the Pharmaceutical Research & Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), which contributed nearly $11.2 million (87% of their party donations) to the Republican national committees in the 2000 and 2002 election cycles.

First the pharmaceuticals get to make money on the baby formulas; then they profit for the rest of the person’s life as the provider of medicines and other health care products needed to handle the acknowledged health problems shown in the PSA from choosing their formula products over breastfeeding.

Washington lobbyist Clayton Yeutter, the Secretary of Agriculture for Bush I (the father) and former Republican Party Chairman, with a few lobbyist cohorts, immediately met with Bush-appointee Secretary Tommy Thompson. They conveyed their clients’ objections to the "grossly misleading visuals" in the ad campaign and the questionable scientific validity of claims of a higher incidence of diseases in babies who are not breast-fed.

The lobbyists also contacted the National Institutes of Health, National WIC Association, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and members of Congress responsible for health care policy and WIC reauthorization, reviewing the formula industry objections.

The AAP, whose recent book on breastfeeding became an instant best-seller when Abbott Laboratories bought 600,000 copies, fell into line. AAP President Carden Johnston wrote to Secretary Thompson (without consulting Dr. Lawrence Gartner, Chair of the AAP Section on Breastfeeding), suddenly concerned for the ad campaign’s emphasis on not breastfeeding and unvalidated scientific information.

Tommy Thompson, who had to sell his sizeable portfolio of stock in drugmakers Merck and Abbott Laboratories once he was confirmed as Health and Human Services Secretary, pulled the ad until it could be watered down to suit the needs of the pharmaceuticals – to show a heart-warming suggestion to breastfeed as a lifestyle choice, not an urgent need with major consequences. References to diabetes and leukemia were cut, as well as all specific risk numbers.

Tommy Thompson turned down meeting requests from breastfeeding advocates.

To verify/research, Google: Breastfeeding +Ad Council

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #29

Yesterday, Michael Moore's film, "Fahrenheit 9/11", opened in over 900 theaters across the nation to sold out audiences and standing ovations.

On the same day, the apparently desperate Bush-Cheney campaign began an ad called "The Faces of John Kerry's Democratic Party - The Coalition of the Wild-Eyed" as the main feature on its official website. It shows very brief images of Gore, Kerry, Howard Dean, Michael Moore, and Dick Gephardt, all in the peak of impassioned speeches, followed by the sound and images of Hitler.

The Bush-Cheney ad also parenthetically states that the images of Hitler are from a ad.
They're not. According to Wes Boyd, of, the images are from two of the more than 1500 submissions from ordinary Americans to their ad contest last December and posted for the public to review, criticize and vote on at They were never chosen, endorsed, or sponsored by

However, during the 2002 Senate Race, supporters of President Bush used TV ads morphing the face of democratic Senator Max Cleland into that of Osama Bin Laden.

Sen. Cleland (D-GA) was the victim of this offensive attack because he had voted against Bush's preferred legislation on the creation of a homeland security department, in committee, without an amendment guaranteeing labor rights for federal workers.

To confirm/verify, Google: Bush +Hitler

This coming Monday night, June 28, Michael Moore is hosting a "Turn Up the Heat" Virtual Town Meeting. Citizens, including myself, are handing out flyers to people after seeing "Fahrenheit 911" this weekend. The link to find where House parties are being held in your area is: If you don't see one that strikes your fancy, check back later this weekend or this Monday, as the options are increasing.

Look here to read what happened at theaters across the nation on Friday, according to those who felt moved to email Michael Moore. When asked if he wasn't just singing to the choir, Michael responded, "It's good to give the choir something to sing!"

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #30 - In Celebration of Independence Day

The Declaration of Independence we honor today was written to "LET FACTS BE SUBMITTED TO A CANDID WORLD." (All quotes in bold caps herein are from The Declaration of Independence, 1776)

Amidst the "LONG TRAIN OF ABUSES AND USURPATIONS" which caused the signers to be "ABSOLVED FROM ALL ALLEGIANCE" to their King George, were the following:


Our George has rolled back environmental regulations, ergonomic laws, created a federal deficit that makes the U.S. vulnerable to those who loan the money, created a tax credit that only benefits the already extremely wealthy; engaged the United States in its first pre-emptive strike, and sought to overstep the rules of the Geneva Convention, thus making the United States and its citizens a greater target internationally – and more. (Google: "Bush +[any of the above words/phrases]")

Our George has ignored scientific evidence and reports, causing more than 60 leading scientists — including Nobel laureates, leading medical experts, former federal agency directors and university chairs and presidents — to issue a statement and report on February 18, 2004 calling for regulatory and legislative action to restore scientific integrity to federal policymaking. Dr. Neal Lane, a former director of the National Science Foundation and a former Presidential Science Advisor, stated, "In case after case, scientific input to policymaking is being censored and distorted. This will have serious consequences for public health." (Google: "Bush +scientists")


Our George neglected the warnings in 2001 from his experienced anti-terrorism advisor, Richard Clarke, from President Clinton, from the Hart-Rudman Commission’s Roadmap for National Security, from the Gore Commission on Aviation Safety & Security, from the CIA, from Jordan Intelligence, from Israeli Intelligence, from Russian Intelligence, from Morrocan Intelligence, and from Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, all regarding an imminent Al-Qaeda attack. (Google: "Bush +ignored +warnings")


Our George began making phone calls to Congressmen from Air Force One at 3:00 a.m. on Saturday morning, November 22, 2003, when his Medicare Prescription Drug Bill was rejected in a roll call vote by a margin of 218-216. Though such roll call votes are only supposed to stay open for 15 minutes, Republican House Speaker Dennis Hastert and Majority Leader Tom DeLay refused to close the voting, stretching it to 2 hours and 51 minutes. That’s when the Bush phone calls, the Karl Rove phone calls, and the in-person pressure from Health & Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson finally resulted in the vote Bush wanted, just before 6:00 a.m. with just two votes to spare. Rep. Barney Frank of Massachusetts said, "I don’t mean to be alarmist, but this is the end of parliamentary democracy as we know it." (Google: "Medicare +vote +November 2003")


Our George, before a Joint Session of Congress and the American People on September 20, 2001, announced, "Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists." On October 25, 2001, with no time for the bill to be properly studied, the U.S. Patriot Act was passed. Aside from the abuses that have become obvious in the news of late, the Patriot Act has allowed the government to demand lists of individuals’ reading materials from librarians and booksellers, while forbidding them from uttering a word about such requisitions to anyone. Our ability to be informed, which is the substance of a democracy, is being eaten away. (Goggle: "Bush +Patriot +books")


Our George has contracted dozens of private security firms, manned by highly-paid former U.S. military (such as Special Forces, Seals, etc.), foreign mercenaries and Iraqis to carry out military work in Iraq. This would have stayed more secretive had not pictures been taken at Abu Ghraib, where "Military Intelligence" ordered actual U.S. military to soften up prisoners. Hired as interrogators, these employees of Titan and CACI International, Inc., as well as others, have been paid to pursue top secret information, while they have no more loyalty to the U.S. than their next employer. (Google: "Iraq +private security")

Our George created the Coalition Provisional Authority, which has granted immunity to Private Security Contractors (not normally resident in Iraq) from Iraqi legal process. Such contractors are also not subject to U.S. military law; though the U.S. Department of Defense hires the contractors, maintaining discipline of contractor employees is the responsibility of the contractor’s management structure, not the military chain of command.

Our George had L. Paul Bremer, Pro Consul of the Coalition Provisional Authority sign several edicts on Saturday June 26, 2004, two days before leaving Iraq, which enforce future control by the United States. The edicts specifically include ongoing immunity for U.S. contractors. "If they know they have full immunity, they will do anything they want because they know no one can do anything about it," stated Interim Iraqi Minister of State Mahmud Farhad Othman. (Google: "Iraq +contractors +immunity")

Concluding his list, Thomas Jefferson wrote, "A PRINCE WHOSE CHARACTER IS THUS MARKED BY EVERY ACT WHICH MAY DEFINE A TYRANT, IS UNFIT TO BE THE RULER OF A FREE PEOPLE." (Google: "Declaration of Independence")

Happy Fourth of July. Let us make sure our leader is upholding our highest ideals for our democracy, that we pay attention. July 4, 2004

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #31

While the Bush Administration is discussing the possible postponement of the November election, and a newly revealed May 2001 memo shows Rep. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay requested $100,000 from Ken Lay at Enron to push redistricting Texas, and BBC journalist Greg Palast finally is testifying before the U.S. Civil Rights Commission regarding his investigation into the 57,000 voters purged in Florida in 2000 – it is timely to share another 2000 moment.

On November 21, 2000, when the Florida Supreme Court ruled against the Bush demand that the recount be stopped, and then required the three counties to send in the amended results by Saturday November 26th at 5:00 p.m., Bush was ready.

Because on November 18, the Bush/Cheney campaign had put the word out: "We now need to send reinforcements... The campaign will pay airfare and hotel expenses for people willing to go.” But if that failed, there was a backup plan. Reinforcements were hired.

The Capitol Hill office House Majority Whip (then) Tom DeLay (R-TX) organized the recruitment of over 200 Republican Congressional staffers, who were put on the Bush Cheney campaign payroll and flown to Florida in a fleet of corporate jets, including planes owned by Enron and Halliburton.

So, on Wednesday morning, November 22, on the 18th floor of the Stephen P. Clark Government Center for Miami-Dade County, as the 3-person Board of Canvassers met to begin the recount – a crowd of those "reinforcements," in the guise of irate locals, was growing outside the room. With the tension rising, and limited time, the Board announced that they and the official observers would be retreating to a smaller office on the 19th floor, where they would examine and count the 10,750 disputed ballots, away from the general public.

The Republicans seized the moment.

U.S. Rep. John Sweeney (R-NY) called out, “Shut it down!" and the hired mob went mad. They charged up to the 19th floor, raising a ruckus – pushing, banging on walls and doors, chanting, "Stop the count, stop the fraud!" – and preventing official observers and journalists from entering the office (from Paul Gigot, reporting in the Nov. 24 Wall Street Journal).

A Washington Post photograph of the supposedly-outraged-voter/rioters clearly identifies:
• House Majority Whip Tom DeLay’s Policy Analyst – Tom Pyle.
• Majority Chief Counsel and Staff Director for the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Criminal Justice – Garry Malphrus – now Bush’s Deputy Director of the President’s Domestic Policy Council.
• Former Legislative Director to House Majority Leader Tom DeLay and Rep. Van Hilleary (R-Tenn.) – Roger Morse – now Senior Government Affairs Analyst for Federal Policy Practice (Lobbyist) for Preston Gates & Ellis.
• Regional Political Director for the Bush/Cheney 2000 Campaign, former Chief of Staff for Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-Kan.) – Matthew Schlapp – now Bush’s Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of Political Affairs at the White House.
• House Republican Conference Analyst – Kevin Smith – now Bush’s Senior Communications Counselor for the House Education and Workforce Committee (promoting No Child Left Behind).
• General Counsel to Chairman Don Young (R-Alaska) of the House Resources Committee – Duane Gibson – followed Young to the House Transportation & Infrastructure Subcommittee on Highways and Transit, then brought his Capitol Hill expertise to Greenberg Traurig’s Government Affairs Section (Lobbyist).
• Former Legislative Assistant to former Rep. Jim Ross Lightfoot (R-Iowa) – Layna McConkey – now at Steelman Health Strategies, lobbying for the pharmaceutical industry.

and . . .

• **FORMER LAW CLERK FOR SUPREME COURT JUSTICE ANTONIN SCALIA** and Policy Advisor for Bush/Cheney 2000 – Joel Kaplan – became Bush’s First Special Assistant to the President in the Office of the Chief of Staff, and now Bush’s Deputy Director, Office of Management and Budget (not shown in Washington Post photo but identified by multiple witnesses).

These were not just Pages and Gofers. Or Floridians.

To further engender fear in the Miami election administrators (who had just months earlier experienced the stand off and riots over Elian Gonzales), the crowd accused the election officials of deliberately excluding the Cuban dominated precincts (which hadn’t happened). The Spanish language radio station, Radio Mambi, had a reporter there, and the chaotic event and false accusations were on the air. Rumors of 1,000 angry Cubans on their way to storm the building were spread. (Note: Radio Mambi, a vehemently anti-Castro station, was owned by the Cuban American National Foundation. The CANF was established in 1981 with covert funding from the Reagan/Bush administration, and run by CIA operative Jorge Mas Canosa until his death in 1996. Canosa served under CIA Director George H.W. Bush, and was linked to the Iran-Contra affair.)

That did it. The Board reversed its decision and shut down the recount – for good. Later that day, Bush filed his petition with the U.S. Supreme Court, resulting in his being handed the election.

The next evening, the Republican protestors were rewarded with a Thanksgiving celebration banquet at a Ft. Lauderdale Hotel, where they got treated to a conference call from George W. Bush himself, thanking them, and live entertainment by Wayne Newton, singing "Danke Schoen."

To verify/research, Google: "Bush +rioters +Florida +2000."

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:
And in Memory of A.D., who Knew

Know Bush Fact #32

"We can set up all of the oversight possible, at great additional cost to the American taxpayers, and it won’t be worth an Enron pension if the people responsible lie to us, if they take their records and doctor them into falsehoods and if they get away with it."

It’s too bad the 911 Commission Report didn’t say that.

Senator Mark Dayton (D-MN) said it. A week after the release of the 911 Commission Report, at the Senate Hearing on the Commission’s Recommendations, after seeing the differences between the 911 Report and the official NORAD statement of September 18, 2001.

He continued: "I believe that President Bush must call those responsible for those representations to account. If the Commission’s accounts are correct, he should fire whoever at FAA, at NORAD or anywhere else betrayed the public trust by not telling us the truth – and then he should clear up a few discrepancies of his own."

But the Commission didn’t come to such obvious conclusions. Instead, this is what 911 Commission Vice Chairman Lee Hamilton had to say on July 22, 2004 on the PBS "News Hour with Jim Lehrer" after the release of the Report (emphasis is mine):

JIM LEHRER: What do you say to those who say, when you say everybody is to blame, then essentially nobody is to blame?

LEE HAMILTON: The whole mindset of the Commission is very different from the one your question suggests. Our mindset was focused on the future, not on the past... [Note: How can you focus on the future in an investigation?] We believe that if we had looked back and said, okay, this figure, that figure was responsible for 9/11, it would just have created a firestorm, and we would have had no chance of putting forward recommendations that would be acceptable to the Congress and to the president and to the American people. We would have destroyed any chance of a bipartisan result here.

Unfortunately, "bipartisan" is not the same as "non-partisan" - let alone "independent" – as the families had sought.

And it turns out that Lee Hamilton has a history of being the Republican’s favorite Democrat. This is not the first time he has relinquished the truth for the sake of bipartisanship.

In 1987, then Representative Lee Hamilton (D-IN) was Chairman of the House Select Committee investigating the Iran-Contra affair. A brief history reminder: Undermining both the U.S. Congress and the United Nations, members of the Reagan/Bush National Security Council were caught covertly selling arms to Iran (for its war with Iraq, where Saddam Hussein had just received U.S. arms, helicopters and biological weapons, personally delivered by Donald Rumsfeld [but that’s another story – see Know Bush 5]) and diverting the proceeds to the Contra rebels in their fight to bring down the leftist but democratically-elected Sandinista government in Nicaragua.

Sitting on the Committee with Lee Hamilton was the Chairman of the Republican Policy Committee, Representative Dick Cheney (R-WY). Knowing George H. W. Bush was at last perched for the Presidency, Cheney was determined to block the Democrats from bringing Vice President Bush before the Committee to testify about his Iran-Contra knowledge. Aware of Hamilton's weak spot, the intimidating Cheney pushed on his pride in his bipartisanship, and Hamilton folded.
Bush never testified.

In 1992, at the end of his only term as President, George H. W. Bush pardoned five of the Iran-Contra criminals. Now many of those convicted and/or involved have at last been rewarded in his son's administration: John Negroponte - U.S. representative to the United Nations & U.S. Ambassador in Iraq; Richard Armitage - Deputy Secretary of State; Elliott Abrams - Special White House Assistant for Democracy and Human Rights; John M. Poindexter - Director, The Information Awareness Office.

Lee Hamilton did another huge favor for George H.W. Bush five years later, in 1992, when he was Chair of the House Select Committee investigating the "October Surprise" of 1980.

This time, a book entitled October Surprise: America’s Hostages in Iran and the Election of Ronald Reagan, written by former National Security Council desk officer Gary Sick, and published just after the 1991 Gulf War, revealed the 1980 plot to undermine President Carter’s negotiations for the release of the 52 American hostages held in Iran, and specifically accused Vice Presidential candidate and former CIA Director George H. W. Bush and William Casey, Reagan’s presidential campaign manager, of meeting with Iranian Prime Minister Bani-sadr in Paris in October 1980, only weeks before the election. There they allegedly cut a deal where they would provide Iran with weapons for its war against Iraq (sound familiar?), and in exchange, Iran would refuse to release the hostages to President Carter, and instead wait until Carter was out and Reagan was in to let them go.

And so it went. Weapons were delivered, Carter’s failures cost him the election, and the hostages were released during Reagan’s Inauguration.

The incriminating book was at first ignored in the wake of Bush's quick success with the Gulf War, but by mid 1992, interest was growing, and once again Lee Hamilton was charged with investigating George H.W. Bush’s involvement, as he headed towards an election.

In a strangely irresponsible move, Hamilton publicly announced prematurely that there was no proof to the charges, even though he had not yet begun to review the evidence. Eventually, Hamilton would again save Bush from scandal and possible charges by denouncing the witnesses as untrustworthy, but by then the people had Bush out. The case, and the Bush Presidency, quietly closed in January 1993.

So, here we are again. Bush heading into a Presidential election, questions about what he knew and did, and Lee Hamilton co-leading an investigation.

On April 29, 2004, after many negotiations, the 911 Commission was finally allowed to interview Bush. . . with Cheney. . . in private. . . without cameras, tapes, transcripts, notes or witnesses. Still, it was an extraordinarily significant day. Yet, after two hours, as Bush was still handling questions, Lee Hamilton left. As did Robert Kerrey -- the Democrat who replaced the too-outspoken Max Cleland. In so doing, they abandoned the Democratic side of the supposedly bipartisan Commission, leaving the room with 3 Democrats and 7 Republicans, while they headed off for luncheon appointments. Their early abandonment of this vital opportunity, which lasted another precious 70 minutes, was not deemed worthy of mention in the Commission's press release, of course, but soon became known around the D.C. beltway.

Whatever the excuse, the opportunity, at last, to question Bush, was clearly not a priority. So much for, as Senator Dayton put it, clearing up discrepancies.

With this family history of covert trickery followed by suppression of query, especially preceding elections, the voters have the right to be leery, from now through November, of news that seems to redeem Bush's leadership, such as:

Increased terrorist threats requiring visible efforts at security...

Dramatic arrests of important enemies...

Or maybe even...

Behold! Finding Weapons of Mass Destruction!

To verify/research, Google : "Bush +Lee +Hamilton." To find a more specific point of interest, add [space]+ and a key word, such as "Contra" or "Surprise", for example.

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #33

On July 25, 2003, former Senator Max Cleland, a 911 Commission member, spoke with Frank Sesno on PBS’ "Now with Bill Moyers". He complained that while the Commission was formed mid-December 2002, and was to use the joint Senate and House Intelligence Committee Report that was supposedly available on December 10 as its launching pad, it was eight months before the 911 Commission received it, with only 10 months remaining until its own deadline [later extended 2 months].

CLELAND: I'm saying that's deliberate... The 9/11 Commission was deliberately slow walked, because the Administration's policy was, and its priority was, we're gonna take Saddam Hussein out.
The real priority of the White House was not the 9/11 Commission — they fought it. And it was just, and it really was their interest was to delay the revelation of this report.
One of the reasons they didn't want it is they didn't want all this stuff out there.
Step number one, where in the world is Osama bin Laden?...
Step number two, what is the al Qaeda? Why did they do this? Why did they shift their target from the monarchy in Saudi Arabia, and the leadership in Egypt, why did they shift their target to America? They shifted their target, we know that. . .
SESNO: Step number three. Financial Times today reporting on the Congressional Report: "Report Raises New Questions on Saudi Role in 9/11 Attacks."
CLELAND: Absolutely. . . You can read between the lines and see that there were foreign governments that were much more involved in the 9/11 attack than just supporting Islamic fundamentalist teachings and schools. Now, that has been redacted. A whole 28 page section...
Look at what’s happening. The Administration, the White House, has put several blocks in the road. One, they run all the information to the 9/11 Commission through a political coordinator in Ashcroft’s Justice Department. Duh. Why that?
Secondly, they want to put minders – that’s people who sit in the room when we have an interview with people in NSA, FBI, CIA, Department of – in DIA – in the Pentagon, and Immigration and Naturalization Services. They want to put minders in there. That's to shut down information. That’s not to reveal information.
The "minders" were actually a requirement from the White House that had to be in place before it would release information it was intentionally withholding. Chairman Kean did publicly complain as well. Still, even though the presence of minders would thwart candor, criticism, or whistle-blowing, the Commission agreed to the deal.

Max Cleland was also one of only two Commissioners (the other was former Rep. Tim Roemer, D-IN) who objected to another deal the Commission made. The White House required that only Commission Executive Director Philip Zelikow and Commissioner Jamie Gorelick would be allowed to see and take notes on pre-edited versions of the Presidential Daily Briefings.
Only after their notes on the already edited PDBs were reviewed and/or redacted by the White House could they be shared with the remaining Commissioners.

By October 26, 2003, Max Cleland was fed up, and said so in the New York Times:

We're still in negotiations with some assistant White House counsel about getting these documents – it’s disgusting.
A majority of the commission has agreed to a bad deal... It is a national scandal... I'm not going to be part of looking at information only partially. I'm not going to be part of just coming to quick conclusions. I'm not going to be part of political pressure to do this or not do that...
As each day goes by, we learn that this government knew a whole lot more about these terrorists before Sept. 11 than it has ever admitted.
On November 21, 2003, Bush suddenly nominated Max Cleland to the Board of the Export-Import Bank of the United States, a credit agency that directly benefits U.S. small businesses by financing the export of U.S. goods and services.

It was a great opportunity for Cleland. "The Ex-Im Bank focuses on good-paying jobs for Americans. That's what the Bank is all about. That's what I'm all about."

The appointment required Cleland's resignation from the 911 Commission.

On December 8, 2003, the 911 Commission did not mention Cleland at their public session.

Finally, when pressed by a reporter asking about the restoration of the Commission’s credibility, Chairman Kean and Vice-Chairman Hamilton noted that Cleland was a man of integrity, but did address the issues he had raised.

To verify/research, Google "911 +Cleland".

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #34

"We must uncover every detail and learn every lesson of September the 11th." – George W. Bush, November 27, 2002, at his ceremonial signing of the bill authorizing the creation of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (911 Commission).

Less publicly, that same day, he released a statement:

Many provisions of the Act, including section 342 and title VIII, establish new requirements for the executive branch to disclose sensitive information. As I have noted in signing last year's Intelligence Authorization Act and other similar legislation, the executive branch shall construe such provisions in a manner consistent with the President's constitutional authority to withhold information the disclosure of which could impair foreign relations, the national security, the deliberative processes of the Executive, or the performance of the Executive's constitutional duties.

Bush didn’t want this 911 Commission.

On January 28, 2002, Bush called Senate Democratic Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD) requesting that no September 11 inquiry be made. This was a followup call to Dick Cheney’s call to Daschle on January 24, when Cheney insisted such an inquiry would interfere with the war on terrorism.

On May 23, 2002, Bush announced that he was opposed to creating a special commission to investigate the events surrounding September 11. "I have great confidence in our FBI and CIA," he said, in spite of revelations days before that there had been an August 5 memo presented to Bush titled "Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S." (deliberately mistitled by Bush’s Press Secretary Ari Fleischer as just "Bin Laden Determined to Strike U.S." – no "in").

On September 20, 2002, facing increased pressure from the 911 families, Congressional findings, and a Senate ready to approve a special 911 Commission, Bush announced his full support for a 911 Commission.

However, on October 10, 2002, just after congressional negotiators hailed a final deal over the scope and powers of a 9-11 panel, Dick Cheney called House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Porter Goss (Bush’s current nominee for CIA Director). Suddenly, Goss backtracked and refused the deal, stating behind closed doors that he’d received instructions from "above my pay grade" to "keep negotiating," pushing for more difficult subpoena guidelines and the President’s right to name the Chairman of the Commission.

Bush got his way, and when he signed the Bill on November 28, 2002, he named Henry Kissinger as its Chairman, stating, "Dr. Kissinger and I share the same commitments."

Not something most people would want to admit. After all, while Kissinger was in charge of U.S. foreign policy from 1969 to 1976, he sanctioned U.S. backing of military coups, invasions, and torture in Pakistan, Chile, Argentina, East Timor, Greece, and the massive rearmament of the Israeli government after the 1973 Arab-Israeli War.

Kissinger’s strategies in Southeast Asia, including secret bombings and the invasion of Cambodia, prolonged the Vietnam War over seven years, at the cost of 30,000 American and more than a million Vietnamese lives. On the home front he instigated illegal spying on the opponents of Nixon and the Vietnam War.

During those years, Kissinger had the pleasure of working with CIA Director George H.W. Bush, with President Ford’s Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and with White House Chief of Staff Dick Cheney.

Sadly, Kissinger stepped down as 911 Commission Chair within weeks, after he refused to reveal conflicts of interest that might exist because of Kissinger Associates, a company which facilitates contracts between multinational corporations and foreign governments. (Six months later, the Managing Director of Kissinger Associates for twelve years, L. Paul Bremer, III, was named Bush’s Head of the Coalitional Provisional Authority in Iraq.)

At that point, Bush chose Thomas Kean to Chair the 911 Commission, the former New Jersey governor who appeared less controversial. Kean’s official biography on the 911 Commission website did have to exclude his serious conflict of interest. Thomas Kean is currently a Director of Amerada Hess, a petroleum giant with an off-shore subsidiary partnership with Delta Oil, a Saudi company funded by Khalid bin Mahfouz, husband of Osama Bin Laden’s sister, and head of Saudi Arabia's powerful National Commercial Bank.

There is substantial evidence that the National Commercial Bank of Saudi funneled tens of billions of dollars to Bin Laden as both protection money and support for his actions, and the bank is named in a $1 trillion lawsuit, filed on behalf of families of the victims of September 11, as alleged financiers of Al Qaeda.

Khalid bin Mahfouz also has direct ties to George W. Bush, having rescued him twice, when he was merely the son of Vice President George H. W. Bush, by pouring Saudi/Bin Laden money into his failing businesses, Arbusto 7 Oil, and years later Harken Oil.

Thomas Kean’s ongoing petroleum affiliation with Khalid bin Mahfouz should have excluded him from serving as Chair of the 911 Commission, but it was simply kept quiet.

In the end, Bush’s selection of Kean paid off well. It was Kean who accepted Bush’s terms for his own testifying before the Commission, behind closed doors, with Cheney, without notes or taping, and most important (legally), not under oath.

In spite of Bush calling for "every detail" on November 28, Kean generously allowed him to, as he’d said the same day, "withhold."

To verify/research, Google "Bush +911 Commission", "Bush +Kissinger" and "Bush +Kean".

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #35

As hundreds of thousands of earnest people arrive in New York for a variety of creative protests, many worry that conflicts in the streets televised across the world will be used to Bush’s advantage.

Keeping demonstrations peaceful is urged.

But the gentlest intentions may not be enough.

On January 20, 2001, the Bush-Cheney Presidential Inaugural Committee coordinated with the D.C. Police and federal law enforcement to send out government agents provocateurs – undercover agents (caught on tape - see PBS' "Now with Bill Moyers" ) walking through groups of peaceful demonstrators, covertly squirting pepper spray at close range into the faces of innocent people.

Not just to intimidate, but to provoke violence and arrests.

And that was before 9/11. According to Mara Verheyden-Hilliard of the Partnership for Civil Justice, a public interest law firm in Washington, D.C.:

This is an effort to criminalize dissent. It's an effort from the Ashcroft Justice department specifically since September 11th. . . They're targeting people purely based on people standing up and saying they oppose government policy.

Ms. Verheyden-Hilliard and her husband, Carl Messineo, have several lawsuits filed against D.C. police and the federal government regarding this abuse of civil rights. (The D.C. Police had to admit that the pepper sprayers on Inauguration Day were indeed their own officers.)

Now, under John Ashcroft, the Justice Department allows FBI agents to go undercover to monitor citizen gatherings, whether or not there is evidence or suspicion of criminal activity.

So local police are doing their part as well.

In April 2003, the Colorado Coalition Against War in Iraq, a non-violent group, appropriately contacted police to notify them that they intended to go to U.S. Senator Wayne Allard’s office to present a resolution calling for an end to the U.S. presence in Iraq and an independent inquiry into the truthfulness of the justifications for the military action.

The night before their intended presentation, the group found themselves shocked by the suggestion of an eager new participant who said they should they up the ante and storm the building.

Fortunately, wise leaders prevailed, and the new guy was later found to be with the Sheriff’s Office.
Recent terrorist alerts in Washington and New York have shown Bush and his administration anxious to display a sudden burst of diligence. Now, at the Republican National Convention in New York City, amidst new reports from Abu Ghraib, revelations of an Israeli spy in the Defense Department influencing Middle East policy, the Census Bureau reporting a growth in poverty and the uninsured, and scornful words from the Iraqi soccer team, Bush needs an enemy he can crush, especially on prime time television.

Demonstrators in New York should be very careful, and observers need to watch for Bush distracting from serious issues by focusing on turning peaceful dissenters into dangerous, crazy, Kerry-supporting terrorists he must crush for the safety of the American people.

To verify/research, Google "Bush +protest +pepper".

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #36

"It is my great honor and privilege to nominate George W. Bush, a strong and compassionate leader, for the office of President of the United States of America."
And so started the misuse of language at the 2004 Republican Convention.

On the second day, the theme was: "People of Compassion" – but just because they use the word "compassion", over and over again, saying it doesn’t make it true.

According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, "compassionate" is defined as "having or showing sympathetic consciousness of others' distress together with a desire to alleviate it."

In a biographical piece on Bush by Nicholas D. Kristof in the May 21, 2000 NY Times (as well as many other sources), Bush’s childhood friend, Terry Throckmorton, told of young Bush’s leadership as a boy in Texas when, in a favorite activity after a good rain, thousands of frogs would come out.

“Everybody would get BB guns and shoot them, or we'd put firecrackers in the frogs and throw them and blow them up.''

In 1967, as President of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity at Yale, Bush was called to task for leading a sadistic, illegal torture on new members: The tip of a wire hanger was bent to form the Greek letter Delta, heated over a flame, and then used to brand fraternity initiates in the small of the back, creating a second degree burn that left a half-inch scar.

This action got him his first interview with the NY Times when the scandal broke.

"It was no worse than a cigarette burn. . . There's no scarring mark physically or mentally.''

According to the Guiness Book of Records, Texas holds the title of "U.S. State with the Most Executions," with George W. Bush signing 152 of the 244 death warrants, 40 of them in 2000, the year he first campaigned as a "compassionate conservative."

He defended his preference for capital punishment:

"I believe it sends a chilling message that there is a consequence to your actions."

Hmmm. . .

What about the consequences suffered by the 978 patriotic Americans who’ve died in Iraq to date?

Or the over 3,000 Americans wounded, many very seriously?

In preparation for his attack on Iraq, in June 2002, Bush declared to the National Security Agency:

"I’d rather have them [the American troops] sacrificing on behalf of our nation than, you know, endless hours of testimony on Congressional hill."

And then there’s Abu Ghraib, where, for example, an Iraqi prisoner with an already dislocated shoulder was hung from the ceiling by that very arm, even though it had been pointed out by a medic as needing treatment . .

Or what about Iraq itself, where, according to , the number of Iraqi dead is estimated between 11,730 and 13,730. . .

On that Republican National Convention day of "People of Compassion," the U.S. military bombed the village of Weradesh in Afghanistan, where at least 8 villagers, including children, were killed, and a Danish team aiding Afghan refugees barely managed to escape, as their supplies and equipment were destroyed

The day following the Republican day of "Compassion," the U.S. launched an air strike on the Iraqi city of Falluja, leaving 17 people dead, including three children, a woman and an elderly man.
Still, the Republicans usurp the word "compassion." But here’s the catch: According to Ramesh Ponnuru, Senior Editor for the conservative National Review, on NPR’s The Diane Rehm Show Wednesday, September 1:

"In promising to be a compassionate administration President Bush never agreed that he was going to accept the definition of compassion proffered by liberals."

Liberals? What about Merriam Webster?

There again, this is the same Bush who also manages to usurp Christianity without seeming to accept the creed proffered by Christ:

"In everything, do to others what you would have them do to you."

To verify/research, Google "Bush +frogs" or "Bush +torture".

For a stunning and insightful look at Bush’s "compassion" I strongly recommend Bush on the Couch, by Dr. Justin Frank. And before anyone jumps at the criticism that Dr. Frank never actually had Bush on his couch, please note that such "Applied Psychoanalysis" has been used for years at the CIA headquarters in The George Bush Center for Intelligence to better understand the character of various foreign leaders.

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #37

In honor of those who work (or seek to work, or who have been let go from work), on this Labor Day:

“When a good or service is produced at lower cost in another country, it makes sense to import it rather than to produce it domestically.”
– Economic Report of the President
February 2004

“Outsourcing is just a new way of doing international trade. More things are tradable than were tradable in the past. And that’s a good thing.”
– N. Gregory Mankiw
Chairman of President Bush’s Council of Economic Advisors
Feb. 9, 2004

“CEOs at companies that outsource the most U.S. jobs are rewarded with bigger paychecks.”
– The Institute for Policy Studies / United for a Fair Economy Report
“Executive Excess 2004: Campaign Contributions,
Outsourcing, Unexpensed Stock Options and Rising CEO Pay”
August 31, 2004

“Why don’t they get new jobs if they’re unhappy – or go on Prozac?”
– Susan Sheybani
Asst to Bush Campaign spokesman Terry Holt
Overheard by Reuters journalist during a phone transfer
July 2004

According to this August 31 report quoted above from The Institute for Policy Studies / United for a Fair Economy, called “EE2004" for short, the 50 CEOs of the largest outsourcers of service jobs were paid an average of 46% more in 2003 than in 2002.

Meanwhile, U.S. soft-ware related jobs – the newest trend in outsourcing, are “in steady decline, dropping 16 percent between 2001 and 2004.” This indicates that the increased profits of these outsourcing companies, that supposedly would support jobs and the economy in the United States, are instead making the already wealthy top executives even more wealthy.

Back at home, according to the September 1, 2004 report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. employers initiated 10,208 mass layoffs, causing 1,049,541 workers to lose their jobs from January through July 2004.

Even so, the Bush’s Department of Labor denied income and training assistance under the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) to hundreds of workers who lost their job due to trade, only agreeing to reconsider its decision when it appeared that it would lose in the U.S. Court of International Trade. Bush’s budget for 2005 also reflects a $300 million dollar cut back in funding for TAA benefits.

Meanwhile, the National Republic Committee went past American workers and outsourced their fundraising calls to HCL Technologies in India. During a 14 month period in 2002/2003, callers from India contacted an estimated 8 million registered Republicans in the United States, raising approximately $10 million for Bush’s re-election campaign.

The Bush administration also passed over American workers to outsource a $30 million order for uniforms for the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (now an agency of the Department of Homeland Security) to be produced in Mexico, Canada and the Dominican Republic. Though the Berry Amendment of 1941 requires military uniforms, as well as tents, tarps, etc. purchased by the Department of Defense to be made in the United States, the Department of Homeland Security is a separate entity, without loyalty to American-made.

To verify/research, Google: “Bush +outsource.”

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact # 38

The Bush/Cheney ‘04 campaign claims to be "Building a Safer World."

Their Convention was in New York City to remind voters of their worst nightmare, to date.

Leading up to the third 9/11 anniversary, Dick Cheney warned Americans of the danger of voting for Kerry: ". . . we'll get hit again and we'll be hit in a way that will be devastating." (Though the sentence was deleted from the web transcript, he made his point.)

Bush and Cheney are banking on voters believing they are the leaders who will keep us safe from terrorists. Polls indicate that is their greatest strength.

However. . .

Across the United States, there are 15,000 chemical manufacturing facilities, oil tank farms, pesticide plants and other repositories of deadly chemicals that are without standard security measures – EASY TO HIT - EASY TO POISON OUR AIR ON A HUGE SCALE. Talk about devastating. .

The Kuehne Chemical Company of Kearney, New Jersey, for example, just across the Hudson from Ground Zero, reported in a 1999 mandatory safety report that a rupture of an onsite tank car, for example, "would be immediately dangerous to life and health for a distance exceeding fourteen miles. The total population in this radius is approximately twelve million."

Troy Morgan, the FBI’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Specialist, refers to such a chemical tank as "the poor man’s atomic bomb."

In April 2002, Pittsburgh Tribune Review reporter, Carl Prine, entered 60 dangerous chemical plants, strolling through unguarded gates, driving up to pipes and control rooms, climbing on tanks – all key terrorist targets. "I wonder what it would take for me to get arrested at one of these plants?"

On February 6, 2002, George Tenet, then Director of the CIA, testified that Al Qaeda could be planning to target chemical facilities.

Unfortunately, Bush is ignoring this warning, because this is where Bush’s stand on deregulation outweighs his concern for keeping us safe.

Attempts to respond to Tenet’s warning, by establishing enforceable security standards at these chemical plants, were shut down when the chemical-industry trade associations put their money and lobbyists to work.

Meanwhile, Christine Whitman at the Environmental Protection Agency spent a year trying to negotiate chemical security regulations that would suit the White House – to no avail. So, she decided to fall back on the EPA’s authority to send inspectors to high priority chemical facilities. Unfortunately, her plans were leaked on June 11, 2002.

Naughty Christine and EPA.

On July 25, 2002, Senator John Corzine’s (D-NJ) Chemical Security Bill, an attachment to the Senate's Homeland Security bill specifically granting the EPA authority to regulate security at plants housing dangerous chemicals, and requiring a decrease in the quantity of dangerous substances allowed in storage, passed the Environment and Public Works Committee on a 19-0 vote.

Naughty EPW Committee.

On August 29, 2002, the Republican members of the Environment and Public Works Committee received a letter, signed by thirty members of the chemical and oil industry lobby, protesting the Chemistry Security Bill.

A week later, on September 6, 2004, the Bush's Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) received an urgent fax from the President and CEO of The American Petroleum Institute. Days later, on September 11, seven of the nine Republican members of the Environmental and Public Works Committee changed their stand and signed a letter arguing against the Chemical Security Bill. It died without a vote.

That summer, The American Chemistry Council paid more than $1 million in political contributions, most of which went to Republicans.

That fall, Bush, in a reversal of position (flip flop!), suddenly campaigned in favor of the Department of Homeland Security Act, and it passed in November, without any binding provisions for security at chemical plants.

Once the new Department was in place, in early 2003, Bush took away all EPA authority over chemical security and transferred all such oversight to the inexperienced, overwhelmed and underfunded Department of Homeland Security.

On May 21, 2003, Christine Whitman announced her resignation as Chief Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.

The American Chemistry Council, the largest chemical industry trade association, has issued a code of voluntary security practices. Sadly, it does not include such basic protections as background checks on guards or even timely repair of fences.

Thus, Bush/Cheney ‘04 sells out our safety when we’re not watching. It should not be considered their strong point.

To verify/research, Google "Bush +EPA +chemical +Homeland."

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #39

Recently on National Public Radio, Neal Conan asked the listeners which book was the single, most essential book one should read before the election. Having highlighted and bent pages on 18 of them – 12 finished and 6 partially read – I had some opinions on this subject.

Time was I’d say Molly Ivins & Lou Dubose’s Bushwhacked to get to the heart of the matter; or I’d say Craig Unger’s House of Bush House of Saud to get a clear picture of the Saudi/Middle East/U.S. historical perspective – important and easy to read.

Then I heard Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. on NPR twice in one day, and I was horrified at what I learned. I immediately had to find his book, Crimes Against Nature: How George W. Bush and His Corporate Pals Are Plundering the Country and Hijacking Our Democracy.

Despite RFK, Jr.’s strong Democratic roots, his decades of service in environmental law have always benefitted Republicans and Democrats alike. We are all still organisms that must consume air, water and food in order to live, and to love, and to create families, and to prosper.

But these days, Bobby, Jr., as Senior Attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council (and one of Time Magazine’s “Heroes for the Planet”), is moved to raise his voice at this time because American citizens are so unaware of the complete reversal of environmental protection that has occurred under George Bush, intentionally hidden in programs cynically named “Clear Skies” and “Healthy Forests”.

“George W. Bush will go down in history as America’s worst environmental president.” – So begins the December 2003 Rolling Stone Magazine article that grew into Kennedy’s Crimes Against Nature..

Even while most of us don’t know about Bush’s historical significance regarding our environment, the energy, chemical, and industrial farm leaders know. More to the point, they set a goal, put out the money, and got what they paid for – Bush Cheney 2000.

George W. Bush

While Governor of Texas, Bush conferred with Alcoa, Exxon, Shell, Amoco, Enron, & Dow Chemical – and their $1.5 million in campaign gifts – and state laws changed accordingly.

Companies in Texas were authorized to monitor their own nasty pollution on a voluntary basis. As long as they reported their mistakes... and promised to clean up – there would be no fines, no public disclosure and no government follow up.

Dick Cheney

It turns out Cheney wasn’t just the CEO of Halliburton between his White House assignments. He was also fundamental in developing and promoting “Wise Use” – a pseudo-practical way of perceiving the earth as something to “use wisely” – which applies cost/benefit analysis (short-term money-making) to decide how best to use up the planet.

Remember how Cheney protected the privacy of the meetings he held within days of hitting the White House -- with Enron and other energy leaders -- all the way to the Supreme Court, where his friend of 30 years, Antonin Scalia, backed him up in his secret schemes?

What went on behind those doors was betrayal – the corporations that control those utilities we have come to rely on, without which we cannot function, went to the White House with detailed wish lists. It was payback time, and their wishes – for greater profits, less restrictions, and more accessibility to the goodies of the land – took priority over the well being of the people – those fools who must be kept foolish – who believe their leader and pay more; who believe and shop; who believe and attack those who don’t believe.

So we are supposed to stand loyal, while the Vice President is fighting tooth and nail to keep knowledge away from us. Shouldn’t that make us curious? Would we walk away from a child fiercely defending the door of his closet? Wouldn’t we know that we’d better get a look?

That’s why distractions were so important.

However, the inevitable effect of this mis-prioritizing is hitting us where we are most vulnerable – our children.

Asthma, from increased particulates in the air, is now the most common childhood disease, with death rates increasing steadily, regardless of improvements in treatment.

At the same time, one out of every six American women has so much mercury in her womb that her children are at risk for autism, blindness, mental retardation and heart, liver and kidney disease.

In August, the EPA announced that all fish in 19 states are now unsafe to eat because of mercury contamination, as well as at least some of the fish in 48 states are now unsafe to eat. Actually, the only two states where they’re considered “safe” are Alaska and Wyoming, where Republican legislatures wouldn’t pay to test the fish.

The greatest source of the polluting particulates in the air, as well as the mercury in our water and fish are the 1,100 older coal-burning plants that have failed to make improvements to meet new standards. Clinton’s administration had initiated serious investigations and prosecutions against the 70 worst of these plants. Then Bush arrived.

This is an industry that donated $48 million to President Bush and the Republican Party in the 2000 cycle and has given $58 million since. One of the first things that Bush did when he came into office was to order the Justice Department to drop those lawsuits.

The Justice Department lawyer said that this had never happened before in American history, where a president accepts money from industries targeted for investigation and prosecution, and then orders the justice department to drop those investigations once he gets into office. There were 70 utilities involved here and, according to EPA, just the criminal exceedences from those 70 plants killed 5,500 Americans every year. Then the administration went and rewrote the Clean Air Act, gutting the New Source rule, which means those plants will be able to discharge ozone and particulates forever.

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., October 7, 2004, Mother Jones Magazine

They got their ticket, all right.

Please understand that the above is merely an example of the multitude of appointments and regulation rollbacks that Bush has ordered, with unusual diligence, selling out the natural resources we depend on – not just for recreational activities and tree-hugging – but for our survival, while we’ve been looking elsewhere.

Bush’s accompanying mislead is “torte reform.” Given the mercury poisoning in 48 states and the thousands of children asthmatically gasping – for starters – perhaps Bush’s push to put caps on damage awards isn’t really about the cost of health insurance. It’s a lot more likely that he is seeking to nip-in-the-bud the trillions of dollars the polluting companies should pay if their disdain for their victims is revealed. Perhaps the entire country should be suing Bush himself, for the destructive poisons he’s unleashed upon us.

There’d be nothing frivolous about such lawsuits. Not if we have to witness our children and grandchildren struggling to breathe, struggling to think, struggling to live.

Clearly, this has nothing to do with Republican vs. Democrat. Quite the contrary. RFK, Jr. laments:

“While claiming to embrace its values, the Bush administration has stolen the soul of the Republican party. The president and his cronies have taken the conserve out of the conservative.”

Again, so much for Homeland Security and the Bush Cheney motto – “Building Safety.” Take a few minutes to explain this to a Security Mom you know.

To verify/research, Google “Bush +New Source Review” or “Bush +Kennedy, Jr.”

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Based on the belief that the truth shall set you free:

Know Bush Fact #40
(A Good Number for Knowledge)

“What do you expect from a president who believes in Creationism?”
– Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

During the 2000 campaign, Bush said, “I feel that God wants me to run for President. I can’t explain it; … I know it won’t be easy on me or my family, but God wants me to do it.”

Bush’s religiosity, his faith, came to him around the time of his 40th birthday when his parents called in Billy Graham after another embarrassing evening with the younger Bush’s drinking and abusive language. Suddenly, he was born again, and from that moment on, Bush has supposedly never had another drink.

That change has probably made life easier on his family in many ways, but just stopping the behavior does not mean an alcoholic is cured. Those who are knowledgeable about addictive personalities know that it’s not easy to face one’s demons, and that there is a strong tendency to replace one addiction for another.

Dr. Justin Frank, in his daring book, Bush on the Couch, points out that Bush’s religion has both given him his sense of purpose, and eased the anxiety he had earlier numbed with alcohol.

So Bush spent years developing a new spiritual life with the Christian right, whose members conveniently, in turn, were deeply moved by the hope for a President who would cater to their ways.

Then, as we know, in Bush’s first year in the White House, there was 9/11, and theologians recognized immediately that his Christianity shifted gears. It was no longer about personal salvation. It was about Biblical prophecy, the fight between good and evil.

“Our responsibility to history is already clear: to answer these attacks and rid the world of evil.”

Bush even had the insensitivity to use the word “crusade” regarding his response to the terrorists – more than once – enraging Muslims everywhere.

On the first anniversary of 9/11, he stated U.S. policy using language taken from the Gospel of John:
“This idea of America is the hope of all mankind. That hope drew millions to this harbor. That hope still lights our way. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness will not overcome it.”

Originally that statement referred to the Light of Christ and the Word of God.

So, America has become the Godhead, and we can only imagine what that makes Bush.

Ron Suskind (The Price of Loyalty) wrote about Bush’s increasingly strange religious ego in his cover story for the New York Times Magazine on October 17, 2004. He spoke to Jim Wallis, an evangelical pastor who for the last 30 years has been an advocate for social justice, and who, as a member of Bush’s transition team, tried to provide Bush with greater insight into compassion by bringing together a diverse group of clergy to talk about faith and poverty.

''When I was first with Bush in Austin, what I saw was a self-help Methodist, very open, seeking.”

But by February 2002, Bush’s preference for quick, decisive, faith-based, “intuitive” guidance, over time-consuming, analysis of complicated, reality-based facts, was seriously affecting his policies.

Jim Wallis was alarmed after a brief discussion with Bush about terrorism.

“What I started to see at this point was the man that would emerge over the next year -- a Messianic American Calvinist. He doesn't want to hear from anyone who doubts him.''

On February 5, 2003, just five weeks before the U.S. invasion of Iraq, Karl Rove invited a group of seven Apostolic leaders to a “specially-called meeting” at the White House.

The most revered of these men was Reverend Richard G. Upton, who claims to be “The Christian Voice in the Nations’s Capitol.” According to Reverend Upton, he is “in constant contact with the White House” as the Apostolic Liaison to the White House.

At this meeting, national and world events were discussed, including a review of Judicial nominees and, most important, a briefing on Iraq. In return, the Apostolics expressed their desire to secure a voice in Washington. They felt it was time to get involved, to use their power to affect policy.

Karl Rove concluded the meeting with a promise of bi-monthly White House conference calls for the group, and return visits to the White House every six months, to facilitate their access to the President.

This meeting with the Chief Political Advisor to the President of the United States represented a milestone for the Apostolic movement. At last their strong opposition to a Palestinian state would be understood fully by a powerful world leader.

As the Apostolics saw it, a Palestinian state would be an obstacle – in the way of the fulfillment of the prophecy of Christ’s return – and their Rapture.

“The Rapture” is the goal – to be present at the End of Times, when the world reaches Armageddon, the ultimate battle ground. At that moment, Jesus Christ will appear, and will, at last, call the faithful to Heaven. Those who are worthy will be physically taken up and away – the ultimate redemption – while the rest of humankind suffers the Apocalypse.

On March 25, 2004, National Security Advisor Condoleeza Rice and the “Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Near East and North African Affairs,” Elliott Abrams, found it necessary to get the Apostolics involved in foreign policy.

Only when Rice and Abrams could get the support of the Apostolics, by showing them that the Gaza strip was not significant Biblically and could be sacrificed, would they be able to convince Bush to change his position and endorse a peace negotiation for Israel that included disengagement from the Gaza Strip.

When the story of the Rice and Abrams meeting with these Apocalyptic Christians was first leaked, and then published in The Village Voice, you could follow the link to the Apostolic Congress website when it still included frightening references to The Rapture, but it was quickly shut down and purged of such images. You can, however, still find the website, where you’ll see the official seal of the Apostolic Congress – eerily similar to the U.S. Presidential Seal – only the words in the gold circle surrounding the eagle differ. There is also a special page honoring Bush, which includes pictures of Reverend & Mrs. Upton with Bush & Mrs. Bush, and Upton with Karl Rove.

There are still other websites on the Rapture: The Rapture Ready News – featuring daily updates about the Middle East , hurricanes and volcanic eruptions; or the Rapture Index – featuring a scorecard with 40 different categories to calculate how close we are to the end of Times – tonight, one week before the election, the total has reached the level called “Fasten Your Seatbelts!”

My friends, it is time to consider what we actually KNOW:
1. Bush gave huge tax breaks to the wealthy at the same time he started an expensive war, building a deficit that puts us at the mercy of foreign lenders.
2. Bush gave free rein to the polluters of the world, ignoring scientific evidence and allowing our air and water to become poisonous.
3. Bush led the U.S. into a first strike against a nation, killing tens of thousands in their homes, protected the war profiteers, and neglected to stop an increasingly number of terrorists from looting weapons sites.

We KNOW this is not a safer world.

Knowing this, it is not unreasonable to question whether or not Bush’s goal has actually been to force what he prays will be his Redemption – the Rapture!

Too bad about the rest of us.

Too bad about Armageddon.


Know Bush? There’s so much he doesn’t want you to know.

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Written by:

Barbara Bellows-TerraNova