Archive for June, 2004

Who Me?…. What Picket Line?

One of Glenn’s readers notes another possible Kerry flip-flop change of heart. And his reposition only took 24 hours.

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The Democratic Party has long held as one of its core beliefs income redistribution. Some have likened the policy to Robin Hood, rob the rich and pay the poor with the spoils of your thievery. Unfortunately more times than not the additional aid to the poor is squandered by ill-advised, poorly managed programs that hurt more than help.

In a remarkable fit of cander Hillary Clinton told several hundred supporters — some of whom had ponied up as much as $10,000 to attend a fund raiser for California Sen. Barbara Boxer — the 33% tax rate they are paying isn’t enough.

“Many of you are well enough off that … the tax cuts may have helped you,” Sen. Clinton said. “We’re saying that for America to get back on track, we’re probably going to cut that short and not give it to you. We’re going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good.”

Welcome back to the reality of 37% tax rates, at minumum, and more Democratic “Robin Hoods” filtering your hard earned money to that homeless guy pissing on your doorstep.

UPDATE: JYB has more.

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Who’s Lying now?

It must be another in a long line of political hacks – Joe Wilson.

Iraq Had Talks on Buying Uranium for Nukes -FT

Iraq was among several countries in negotiations to buy supplies of illicit uranium from Niger at least three years before the U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein, the Financial Times reported Monday.

Intelligence officers learned between 1999 and 2001 that smugglers planned to sell illicitly mined uranium from the West African country to several states, including Iraq, the newspaper reported, citing senior European intelligence sources.

Although the European intelligence material suggested a proactive role by the sellers, intelligence officials said that Iraq actively sought supplies, the FT said.

Gregory Djerejian has the whole Joe Wilson story including a nice kick in another liars ass, Sy Hersh.

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Enjoy this weeks “best of” … gotta run. Busy, busy, busy day.

Mike emerges from the closet, and admits he is a Neanderthal. Hardly news, but well worth the read.

Damon Dimmick – “How John Kerry Lost My Vote.” Over a bowl of Special K breakfast ceral no less!

Captain Ed points out the utter failure of the European Union as a economic force, as a result of (cover the kids ears), leftist driven Socialism!

Daniel W. Drezner is holding a linkfest of his own with everything you desire to know on subjects ranging from outsourcing, trade politics, Sen. Kerry’s tax proposal, and polling data.

Perry does a vivisection on the Al Gore’s political corpse.

Josh Chafetz of Oxblog points to an Email forwarded to him from the Kerry Campaign with the subject line “disgusting,” and concludes the subject line is the only truth it contains.

Q and O contributer Dale Franks lists possible articles of impeachment the Democrats [Dim]ocrats, via Al Gore, have lined up against George Bush. Don’t hold your breath waiting for the hearings anytime soon.

Al Qaeda’s top leaders are “filthy infidels,”… Osama bin Laden and the Jordanian-born terrorist purportedly operating in Iraq, Abu Mussab al-Zarqawi are “bastards” who “nurture malignance” against Shiite Muslims. Really? Who a thunk it?

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Wheels of justice turn tentatively in Baghdad.

KHAISS al-Malek’s bid to become a legend in the Iraqi resistance did not go quite as planned. In April his gang mounted a rocket attack on a US base, badly wounding a soldier, but the returning fire killed his two accomplices and he was caught.

Instead, his footnote in guerrilla history is rather less glorious: in a trial last week at Baghdad’s new central criminal court, he became the first Iraqi ever convicted of attacking coalition soldiers.

The court, in an ornate building that was Saddam Hussein’s personal museum, is now Iraq’s answer to the Old Bailey. Amid extremely tight security, groups of senior Iraqi judges, veterans of the old days but vetted by coalition authorities, receive the most serious cases involving terrorism and insurgency.

“People might think we just stick detainees before an army tribunal and sentence them ourselves – we don’t,” said Lieutenant Ian Wexler, a US navy judge advocate who helped prepare the case against Malek.

“This court is the only way we can actually prosecute the people who attack us, and for a wounded soldier, it’s the only way he can get justice.”

“Getting it all together is very difficult,” Lt Wexler said. “You have to transport in soldiers to testify, and it requires a very high standard of evidence. The judges made a few acquittals in the first few cases, and we have had to raise the bar quite a bit – that’s why it’s taken this long to get a conviction.”

“Do you know how hard it is to get two witnesses to ID an attacker?” he asked. “It is only possible through corroborating testimony, digital pictures and so on, and we have had to improve the standard of our statements a lot. In this case, we were lucky because two soldiers saw the defendant at the scene, and he was also injured, which clearly suggested he was involved in fighting.”

Sure enough, half an hour later, Lt Wexler puts on a brave face as the judges pass sentence. Despite his claims that the rocket attack amounted to attempted murder – with a 30-year penalty – the bench feels proof exists only for assault. Malek gets six years.

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How Smart is This?

You live and work in Dubai UAE, your home country is having presidential elections. One of the candidates, Fernando Poe Jr., is not to your liking, so in protest you threaten to burn your passport if he wins the election.

Filipino workers who threatened to burn their passports in a political gesture are not expected to carry out the stunt since election results were in their favour.

A number of Filipinos said they wanted to show their disgust at the possible election of opposition presidential candidate Fernando Poe Jr, an actor-turned-politician.

“Poe is a bad loser,” said Ernesto Refugio, Abu Dhabi-based leader of Overseas Filipino Civil Engineers Association.

“He should concede defeat for the sake of the country. We’ve waited long enough for the results. It’s time for us to move on. We have serious problems of unemployment, peace and order as well as rising prices. We must not allow the country to plunge into chaos.”


“Historically, Filipino politicians have never been good losers,” said Capt Tito Zosa, a commercial pilot based in Dubai. “Nobody really concedes defeat unless the winner garners an overwhelming majority.”


“The agitation from the Poe camp is understandable because it’s very expensive to run a presidential campaign in the Philippines. It’s all money down the drain because there’s no chance to recover,” Zosa said.

“We’re politically immature. I just hope the losers will eventually accept defeat with dignity and move on. Otherwise, we’ll all be losers.”


“The losing camps have to accept defeat and give way, so that the proclamation of the winning president and vice-president can take place,” said Richard Dizon, a pastry shop supervisor.

Dizon was one of the Filipinos in Dubai who threatened to burn his passport if Poe won. “Now I guess I can keep my passport. I always felt Poe was just being used by the kingmakers around him.”

Certainly the freedom to protest is a valuable part of any democracy, but I question the burning of a passport as anything meaningful. At best you only create a headache in replaceing it, at worst considering the location of these Filipinos it is possible to be stuck there for a very long time.

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This is a very important – and strange – decision that will affect photojournalism. According to BBC news, “Princess Caroline – the daughter of Prince Rainier of Monaco and film star Grace Kelly – has won a major legal battle over the right of newspapers to publish pictures of her. The European Court of Human rights said photographs of her and her children should not have been published, even if they were taken in a public place. It was hailed as a landmark decision which could affect the rights of “paparazzi” photographers elsewhere. It overturns a German ruling in 1999, which said as a public figure she had to accept being photographed in public.”

“Three magazines – Bunte, Neue Post and Freizeit Revue – published the pictures, which showed the princess skiing, horse-riding, sitting in a cafe and playing tennis with her husband, Prince Ernst-August of Hanover.

German constitutional judges had said the princess was a “personality from contemporary history”, so could not complain about pictures taken of her in a public place.

But the European judges criticised the German decision. They said the papers had violated the princess’ right to privacy, in breach of the European Convention on Human Rights.”Every person, however well-known, must be able to enjoy a legitimate hope for the protection of… their private life,” the court said.

The lawyer for Germany, Klaus Stoltenberg, said his government would examine the decision and make a decision later as to whether to appeal. It has three months to decide.

Via BBC and the Editors Weblog.

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