Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Admiral Fallon Removed for Standing up to the Neocons

Admiral Fallon was forced out as so many Generals before him for standing up to a Fascist White House. He should be an inspiration to others to speak out against evil. The Admiral's outspokenness should dispel the myth that being a general means following the orders of a commander-in-chief without question. That's what separates a free country and a dictatorship:

Fallon was the subject of an article published last week in Esquire magazine that portrayed him as opposed to President Bush's Iran policy. It described Fallon as a lone voice against taking military action to stop the Iranian nuclear program.

"Recent press reports suggesting a disconnect between my views and the president's policy objectives have become a distraction at a critical time and hamper efforts in the Centcom region," Fallon, who is traveling in Iraq, said in a statement issued by his U.S. headquarters in Tampa, Fla.

"And although I don't believe there have ever been any differences about the objectives of our policy in the Central Command area of responsibility, the simple perception that there is makes it difficult for me to effectively serve America's interests there," he said.

Here's part of that infamous Esquire interview:
When Dick Cheney has rattled his saber, it has generally meant that he intends to use it. And in spite of recent war spasms aimed at Iran from this sclerotic administration, Fallon is in no hurry to pick up any campaign medals for Iran. And therein lies the rub for the hard-liners led by Cheney. Army General David Petraeus, commanding America's forces in Iraq, may say, "You cannot win in Iraq solely in Iraq," but Fox Fallon is Petraeus's boss, and he is the commander of United States Central Command, and Fallon doesn't extend Petraeus's logic to mean war against Iran.

So while Admiral Fallon's boss, President George W. Bush, regularly trash-talks his way to World War III and his administration casually casts Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as this century's Hitler (a crown it has awarded once before, to deadly effect), it's left to Fallon--and apparently Fallon alone--to argue that, as he told Al Jazeera last fall: "This constant drumbeat of conflict . . . is not helpful and not useful. I expect that there will be no war, and that is what we ought to be working for. We ought to try to do our utmost to create different conditions."

What America needs, Fallon says, is a "combination of strength and willingness to engage."

Those are fighting words to your average neocon--not to mention your average supporter of Israel, a good many of whom in Washington seem never to have served a minute in uniform. But utter those words for print and you can easily find yourself defending your indifference to "nuclear holocaust."

How does Fallon get away with so brazenly challenging his commander in chief?

The answer is that he might not get away with it for much longer. President Bush is not accustomed to a subordinate who speaks his mind as freely as Fallon does, and the president may have had enough.

The Post's take:
As he was preparing to take command, Fallon said that a war with Iran "isn't going to happen on my watch," according to retired Army Col. Patrick Lang.

Lang, a former analyst with the Defense Intelligence Agency, said in an interview that he asked Fallon how he would avoid such a conflict. "I have options, you know," Fallon responded, which Lang interpreted as implying Fallon would step down rather than follow orders he considers mistaken.

Andrew Sullivan: Clintons Ran Against Gays in 1990s

I will repeat this again--you can't trust the Clinton gang. Those of you who are naive enough in supporting Hillary, thinking she is compassionate and committed, please do some research. The evidence is overwhelming that Billary will betray you:

Many readers expressed disbelief at my claim that the Clintons ran anti-gay ads on Christian radio stations in 1996. Did I have proof? Actually, John Aravosis recently provided a very extensive round-up of what happened back then. It's all true. Here's an excerpt from a Log Cabin briefing at the time:

In an article in today's Washington Times, entitled "For Christian Radio, Clinton Changes Tune on Gays, Abortion," it was reported that the Clinton-Gore campaign "shrugged off" angry calls to shelve the radio ad. The article cited reports from gay and lesbian groups that the campaign might delete the portion of the ad which boasts of Clinton signing the anti-gay Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), but "Clinton campaign spokesman Joe Lockhart said there are no plans to alter the radio ads, which will run for 'a few more days.'"

After boasting about Clinton signing the anti-gay DOMA, the ad concludes with the line: "President Clinton has fought for our values and America is better for it."

John also notes that Bill Clinton advised John Kerry to triangulate against gays in 2004. Kerry refused. But the Clintons have used gays in two ways since their careers began...

Geraldine Ferraro: Obama Where He Is Because He's Black

This comment dwarfs the "monster" reference by Samantha Power. Once again a Clinton surrogate smears Barack. Another race-baiting outrage. It will be interesting to hear how Hillary will handle this outrage:

Clinton campaign finance committee member, former vice presidential candidate, and former Rep. Geraldine Ferraro, D-NY, told the Daily Breeze of Torrance, Ca., that, "If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position. And if he was a woman (of any color) he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept."

Of Clinton, Ferraro said that the press "has been uniquely hard on her. It's been a very sexist media. Some just don't like her. The others have gotten caught up in the Obama campaign."

"I was reading an article that said young Republicans are out there campaigning for Obama because they believe he's going to be able to put an end to partisanship. Dear God! Anyone that has worked in the Congress knows that for over 200 years this country has had partisanship - that's the way our country is."

Bettors Put Their Money on Obama

If you had to bet on who would win the Democratic nomination, who would you vote for. Well, in Ireland you can wager on the election. And they think Obama is a good bet. And if you believe this isn't an accurate way of predicting the actual outcome--think again:

Hillary Clinton will win Democratic primary elections in Pennsylvania, Kentucky and West Virginia in the coming weeks, but rival Barack Obama will ultimately capture the party's presidential nomination, traders were betting on Monday.

Traders on the Dublin-based Intrade prediction market also put their bets on the Democratic party to hold new primary elections before June 30 in Michigan and Florida, where earlier results were declared invalid in a fight over the date of the elections.

But even that, the traders were betting, wouldn't be enough to help Clinton win the Democratic nomination to oppose Republican John McCain in the November general election.

Intrade traders gave Obama a 75 percent chance of winning the Democratic nomination for U.S. president, versus 23.5 percent for Clinton. Traders on the Iowa Electronic Markets, a nonprofit exchange run by the University of Iowa for research purposes, gave Obama a 74 percent chance of winning, versus 24 percent for Clinton.

Prediction exchanges let traders buy and sell contracts on the likelihood of future events. Contracts are structured so the prices can be read as a percent likelihood of an event occurring. Studies of the prediction markets have shown they have an accuracy comparable to that of public opinion polls.

Read on to get predictions on who will win Mississippi and Pennsylvania.

Foreclosure Crisis is Having a Ripple Effect

The impact of the mortgage foreclosure mess is having a profound impact on the economy. We will all suffer if something isn't done. And there doesn't seem to be any real plan to combat the crisis:

The mortgage foreclosure crisis has caused a drop in cities' revenues, a spike in crime, more homelessness and an increase in vacant properties, a survey of elected local officials out today shows.

About two-thirds of 211 officials surveyed by the National League of Cities reported an increase in foreclosures in their cities in the past year, according to the online and e-mail questionnaire. A third of them reported a drop in revenues and an increase in abandoned and vacant properties and urban blight.

"There's a reduction in revenues at the same time that more services are needed," says Cynthia McCollum, president of the National League of Cities and councilwoman in Madison, Ala., a suburb of Huntsville. "Because of foreclosures, people are stealing, crime is on the rise and we don't have more money for cops on the street."