Daily Show on Laura Bush
Good for Attorney General Bill McCollum. I still have problems with the way Florida handles the voting rights of felons. That said, McCollum's ideas are a step in the right direction.
These backlogs are unacceptable. The key of getting rid of them and moving the clemency process at a faster pace is providing the Parole Commission with sufficient staff to get their investigations and reports completed on all the applicants right away, and for the Clemency Board to hold more frequent hearings until the backlog is worked off. The Chairman of the Parole Commission has advised me ten additional temporary personal the Parole Commission could do its investigations and complete the reports to eliminate the backlogs within a year. At that point the Chairman and the Clemency Board staff believe that, with rare exceptions, no other applicant would have wait more than a year for restoration for restoration with or without a hearing.
To eliminate the backlog of civil rights restoration applications, to strengthen the list under the Clemency Board rules of those felons convicted of extremely serious crimes who are required to have a hearing, to prevent the revolving door effect of granting civil rights only then to revoke them because of a new conviction for career criminals, and to provide the Parole Commission with the resources to do its principal task of shepherding the successful re-entry of criminal offenders into our society after their sentences are completed, as well as support the Clemency Board, I propose the following:
1) Each member of the Cabinet commit two personnel or FTE slots to the Parole
Commission for one year to assist in working off the backlog, and at least two
other personnel and/or FTE slots be loaned for a year to the Parole Commission
for this purpose by the Department of Corrections, the Florida Department of Law
Enforcement, and/or the Department of Juvenile Justice. This would provide the
necessary temporary personnel without the need for legislative or budgetary
2) Schedule meetings of the Clemency Board monthly, or more frequently if
necessary, until the backlog is worked off;
Via Florida Politics: The New York Post reports that Charlie Crist received nearly $11,000 in illegal campaign donations from Lou Pearlman. The article also claims Crist rode for free on Pearlman's private plane. Crist also did not reimpurse Pearlman for the costs of fundraisers at Pearlman's Orlando home.
"I'm sick about it," said Dorothy Richards of Holiday, who invested $142,000 17 months ago in an "Employee Investment Savings Account" sold by Trans Continental. She's been trying for the past five months to get her money back.
"I've sent registered letters. I've called their hotline. An attorney wrote a letter. I've done everything," she said. Most of the time no one called back, she said, but recently she spoke with Pearlman and is hoping her luck will change.
Largo city commissioners vote to fire city manager Steve Stanton because of the controversy surrounding his plans to get a sex change. The St Petersburg Times has a video of Stanton giving a moving speech of what he has been through the past week. He never showed bitterness, spoke highly of Largo and city officials. After Stanton's speech, the city commission voted 5-2 to end his employment.
This is my favorite Ted Leo & The Pharmacists song.
City Manager Steve Stanton maybe fired because he announced he plans on getting a sex change. Conservatives have emailed city commissioners about Stanton's sex change.
Richard Elmhurst, Against City Manager
"As a resident of Largo for over 40 years, I'm very disturbed that our city manager is planning a sex change. In my view this would be disruptive to Steve Stanton's ability to conduct city business."
The City Council planned to consider a resolution Tuesday to fire the city's top official less than a week after he announced plans to pursue a sex change operation.
Largo City Manager Steve Stanton, 48, who built a solid reputation as a forceful and energetic leader in 14 years on the job, confirmed rumors last week that he was a transsexual. He planned to keep his $140,000-a-year job as he undergoes the gender reassignment process.
But on Monday, City Councilwoman Mary Gray Black proposed Stanton be put on paid leave while the city begins the process of firing him. She said Stanton's surprise announcement "caused stress, turmoil, distraction and work disruption" in the city.
"Do we want what's controversial or do we want what's best for Largo?" said Martin, whose church includes many members from Largo.
House Speaker Marco Rubio is having a hard time selling his sales tax increase. He described working class people living off "other people's leftover money." Rubio is pumping the long discredited trickle down economics theory. Rubio's statement proves how much of an economic illiterate he is. How are citizens going to have more disposable income with an increased sales tax? People will not due their patriotic duty of shopping of merchandise cost more. Trickle down economics reminds me of this passage from the New Testament.
Yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters' table.
He who denied Lazarus crumbs is now denied Lazarus' comfort.
"The working people are what built this country," said a caller named Cliff. "We didn't live off handouts, which is what he's suggesting. ... It's a typical Republican (attitude), looking down their noses at the average guy."
Robert, another caller, took issue with increasing the sales tax.
"Most working-class people are just struggling to survive and their solution is the most regressive form of tax there is? This is unbelievable. Trickle-down economics was disproven. ... I work my tail off every day just to make ends meet, and if they raise the sales tax, that's going to be coming directly out of every little bit that I earn. It's just going to make it even more expensive to live here, not less."
"It's also going to trickle down to Mercedes dealers," said Jonathan Hamilton, chairman of the University of Florida's economics department. "Maybe Mr. Rubio has a very well-calculated story about where people are going to spend their tax savings. But to say they'll spend it on low-income workers is a stretch."
Charlie Crist is in full damage control mode with reviewing Florida's use of outsourcing. I say it is about time.
Sink appointed Steven Evans, 59, of Tallahassee, CEO of Florida TaxWatch and a retired IBM executive. Crist chose Timothy Yandell, 56, of Melbourne Beach, owner of inetUSA, and Akhil Agrawal, 39, of Miami Beach, president of American Medical Depot.
Campaign finance records show only Agrawal donated to either of their 2006 campaigns. He gave Crist $500 in 2005. The seven-member Council on Efficient Government will examine the performance of the outsourcing of most personnel, purchasing and accounting functions in three ventures by the Bush administration.
Lindsay Beyerstein writes a post about the conservative practice of scalping. I agree with her that the lefty blogosphere is much better at political activism. Conservatives consider political activism taking down Dan Rather and Eason Jordan.
I've heard Gannon/Guckert expose incorrectly cited as a left-wing scalp job. That wasn't a scalping. John Aravosis exposed a mole in the White House press corps. The mole lost his job when it was revealed that he was there illicitly.
Despite what you may have read and heard for the past, oh, several decades, Phyllis Schlafly wants you to know that American women are actually doing fine--there's no violence perpetrated against them at all, so move along, nothing to see here:
The WHO report asserts that one in three of the world's women, in some countries as many as 70 percent, experience violence in their lifetime, usually from their own partner, which is the rationale for calling it domestic violence. I'm surprised feminists don't claim 100 percent, because "violence" is broadly defined to include nonphysical "psychological and economic" actions.
You can bet that a primary purpose of International Violence Against Women Act money will be to lobby the U.S. Senate for ratification of the U.N. Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women so that its U.N. monitoring committee can force U.S. compliance with feminist goals. That agenda includes everything from requiring unlimited abortion rights to rewriting schoolbooks to eliminate so-called "stereotypes" and gender-specific references.
Much work remains to be done before goals of gender equality – and their resulting positive impact on primary-school enrolment, maternal mortality rates and women’s economic independence – are reached, the United Nations Deputy Secretary-General told the opening of the 51st session of the UN’s women’s commission today.No mention of altering schoolbooks and building rows of abortion clinics. There are, however, plenty of initiatives in the UN's proposals that deserve the support of every nation, including the United States.
“Most egregiously, violence against women and girls remains pervasive – perpetrated by family members, strangers and agents of the State in all regions of the world, in the public and private spheres, in peacetime and during conflict,” warned Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro, the highest-ranking woman in the Organization.[.....]
“Let me…encourage the Commission to take bold steps to improve the lives of girls everywhere,” said Ms. Migiro, herself a mother of two girls. Several girls have been invited to share their experiences with the Commission during its session at UN Headquarters.
In 2005, Member States found that, at the 10-year mark of the landmark 2005 Beijing Platform for Action, an extensive blueprint for promoting and protecting the rights of women and girls, the goal of fully protecting girls had not been realized. Girls remained at high risk of being sexually abused and sexually exploited and trafficked for commercial purposes.[.....]
“Ending this pandemic will require our individual and collective commitment,” Ms. Migiro said, listing several possible ways to solve the problem. “It will require us to create an environment where such violence is not tolerated; to work for the full implementation of existing legal norms and policies; to make focused efforts to prosecute and punish perpetrators; to dedicate sufficient resources; and to fully involve men and boys in changing stereotypical attitudes and behaviour.”
All these countries are eligible to sit on the convention's monitoring committee of 23 "experts" who monitor "progress" and order compliance. All U.N. projects to improve the lot of women follow the feminist model: Break up the family, force women into the work force, and send kids to day care.
U.S. women are the most privileged class of people on the face of the earth. That's because we are the beneficiaries of the Judeo-Christian civilization, including the requirement in the Ten Commandments to honor mothers and the Christian religion that honors the Virgin Mary and respects women.
Oh. My. God.
Just when you think you have heard it all, up pops news that brings us around full circle. The latest buzz is Al Sharpton’s shocking news that he has ancestral ties to Strom Thurmond of South Carolina.
According to Mike Ward, a genealogist with Ancestry.com, “Based on the paper trail, it seems pretty evident that the connection is there.” Now Sharpton is asking for a DNA test to confirm the findings that his great-grandfather, a slave, was owned by an ancestor of the late Sen. Strom Thurmond.
Nina Simone is one of the most influental and covered singers of the 20th century. Simone is impossible to define she has sung everything from Jewish traditional numbers to big band music. All Music Guide has a bio on this remarkable artist.
This is a followup from a post I wrote on Sunday regarding Seymour Hershs' article in the New Yorker. After a deeper read and understanding of the implications of what he wrote, well, I was appalled then, now I'm absolutely sickened. It's Iran Contra all over again. Surprising? No. THE REDIRECTION: Is the Administration’s new policy benefitting our enemies in the war on terrorism?
Check out the reaction on AlterNet
Our own government is supporting Al Qaida and others. Additionally, is Negraponte's change in position including supposition he moved for this very reason.
supports betrays the troops.
Is it any wonder that more Americans trust Congress more than Bush? Or, that 2 out of 3 disagree with Bush's surge sending more troops to Iraq? And, this is a new low:
The poll also registered a new low on the question of whether the Iraq war was worth fighting. Thirty-four percent responded that it was, while 64 percent said it was not -- 51 percent strongly. On this question, 51 percent of military veterans and 53 percent of veteran households said they strongly believe that the war was not worth fighting.
It's great people are finally figuring this out. But, it should never have taken this long. Such waste. I'm going to be sick now.
Ruth Sykes was briefly Jeb Bush's efficiency expert. She quit when it became apparent that Bush would not heed her warnings about privatization.
Bush made Sykes his $95,000-a-year director of efficiency and enterprise development about two weeks after the Department of Management Services put out a "request for information" on privatizing personnel services. And get this: Sykes thought People First was headed for trouble!
The 20-year Air Force veteran, who retired in Niceville, also had this odd notion about trusting the troops.
"As I told the governor, people have the answers, your employees have the answers," she told me at the time. "They know where the waste is; they know where the problems are. They will help you if you let them, if they have the motivation to help."
What state employees had under Bush was fear. "You feel like you can't voice your opinion and be critical," Sykes said back then. "I felt like I was exposing things - 'This is a different way, consider this' - and this is what I was brought here to do."
For those of you that are interested in the Central Park Redevelopment Plan.
I saw the Craig Ferguson videos. I've had several friends with drug abuse problems. It is a horrible thing to see.
Someone asked me how a principal could buy crack at school. I explained with his addiction to question is how could he not. That doesn't justify the action. The man's need for the drug overwhelmed all sense of reason. I'm willing to bet he actually told himself it was a good idea. Addiction will warp people's judgement.
I'm not a social commentator. I'm a girl with a blog, like a billion other girls with blogs.
Pffft, sounds like someone's making me awfully important. :)
This is DISGUSTING on so many levels. How many people KNEW this man had a short-term drug problem and got together with the vaunted Tampa Police Dept. to set him up AMIDST CHILDREN and haul him out of school in hand-cuffs; in front of young people who admired him??
(Job security for the dubious 'crisis' teams who will go and counsel children who love this man for something that ABSOLUTELY could have been handled with some finesse!!!)
NOT ONE OF THESE people thought they might have approached this man and said, 'Look, we know you have a problem and need help; we are offering you a chance before we take legal action.' It's not like he was out robbing places !!
Litbrit has moved. Update your bookmarks. Her blog is "THEE place for news in and about Tampa."
People are talking about the polling numbers between between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. What isn't being mentioned is John Edwards is pulling away in Iowa polls. Edwards was already ahead of Tom Vilsack. With Visack gone that clears the stage for Edwards.
They filled their cameras with photos of homeless infants and families. Some captured the friendships among the homeless. For others, their film showed isolation and exclusion.
In a rare opportunity, 40 homeless Reno citizens this week were given disposable cameras to document their lives as part of a recent city-sponsored program.
And what the 15 who returned the cameras captured on film, along with their personal stories, will be presented to the Nevada Legislature during a Monday hearing in front of the Assembly Health and Human Services Committee.
File this under I'm not surprised.
"I'm probably not ... the person you want," I said, finally. "I mean, I'm on the record saying that abortion is good and that all drugs should be legalized, including heroin. Don't you think that might be a little embarrassing for the campaign?"
"The thing you have to realize about Amanda is that she's got real enemies," I said. "We've all got trolls, but Amanda gets a whole different level of abuse."
I told Bob this story to give him some idea of the kind of seething hatred the campaign might have to deal with: The first time I heard Amanda on the radio, an angry caller phoned up to say, "You're Amanda Marcotte, and you're a clerical worker at the University of Texas at Austin." He had his facts wrong, but his message was clear. He was trying to get Amanda fired while leaving some darker threat hanging in the air. The host had to cut him off. Since that incident, at least one of Amanda's trolls had called her then-employer and tried unsuccessfully to get her fired.
I tried to suggest that the campaign might not want high-profile bloggers. I thought it might be better off hiring a well-connected political operative with good connections in the blogosphere.
"My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jews. But now my kingdom is from another place."
Where the Iraqi conflict itself is concerned, Dr. Dobson wants it known that his feelings on the subject are intense and deeply held. He realizes that there are many American Christians who do not share his point of view. Nevertheless, his own position is absolutely non-negotiable. As an adherent of the classic Augustinian "just war" theory, he is convinced that this is a case where the biblical and theological justifications for the use of force are fairly obvious. You may be right in asserting that the U.S. invasion of Iraq was not "defensive" in the strictest and most narrowly defined sense of the term. However, viewed within the larger context of the global War on Terrorism, the defensive nature of America’s pre-emptive strike against Hussein seems indisputable. Please don’t misunderstand. Dr. Dobson doesn’t like war and killing any better than you do, but he believes that this may be one of those moments in history when we are forced to settle for a trade-off: the lives of the few in exchange for the lives of the many
We've won the war already, and for the Democrats to say we can't win it -- what kind of a statement is that? And furthermore, one of the fundamental principles we have in America is that the president is the commander in chief of the armed forces and attempts to undermine the commander in chief during time of war amounts to treason. I know we have an opportunity to express our points of view, but there is a time when we're engaged in a combat situation that carping criticism against the commander in chief just doesn't cut it.
"God is pro-war."
"We are on God's side. This is not a war between Arabs and Jews. It's a war between God and the devil."
"Democracy is messy."
A suicide bomber triggered his explosive vest packed with ball bearings outside the School of Economy and Administration in east Baghdad.
Terrified parents converged on the scene searching for loved ones, some collapsing in horror at the sight of blood and human flesh splattered across the entrance of the building.
"They sold us out!" one man cried out, reflecting sentiment that an 11-day-old US and Iraqi security plan has failed to protect the city from those determined to foment sectarian war.
Carnival Corp reported a billion dollar profit in 2002.They paid no corporate taxes to Florida. The same holds true for Saddlebrook Resorts and Verizon Communications. Skyboxes in sport arenas are not taxed. An estimated $700 million in tax revenue is lost. Every Florida sports team receives a $2 million-a-year tax exception. The franchises are pushing for an extra $2 million. Cause it's hard being a pimp.
For the first time, Medicaid revenues would be placed within the revenue growth limitation.
5. The constitutional amendment would also limit the continued rapid expansion of local government by containing millage to a rate that produces the same tax revenue as was generated in the previous year plus population growth and inflation, excluding new construction and annexation. The revenue cap may be exceeded through a unanimous vote of the governing body.
6. School districts would not see their budgets reduced under the House’s plan. The future growth of school district budgets from property tax revenues would be limited by the amendment, but state government could choose to put more state revenue into schools.
The property tax rate is often given as a percentage (amount of tax per hundred currency units of property value). It may also be expressed as a permille (amount of tax per thousand currency units of property value), which is also known as a millage rate or mill levy. (A mill is also one-thousandth of a dollar.) To calculate the property tax, the authority will multiply the assessed value of the property by the mill rate and then divide by 1,000. For example, a property with an assessed value of US$ 50,000 located in a municipality with a mill rate of 20 mills would have a property tax bill of US$ 1,000.00 per year
Sine.Qua.Non has already touched on the Seymour Hirsh article. I think it is interesting what is being said in conservative circles.
"Everything the advocates of war said would happen hasn't happened," says the president of Americans for Tax Reform, Grover Norquist, an influential conservative who backed the Iraq invasion. "And all the things the critics said would happen have happened. [The president's neoconservative advisers] are effectively saying, 'Invade Iran. Then everyone will see how smart we are.' But after you've lost x number of times at the roulette wheel, do you double-down?"
Impeaching Bush just takes a majority of the House. They could do that tonight.
To REMOVE him takes 2/3rds of the SENATE: 67 votes. They're nowhere close.
Fact is, the man can do anything he wants now, legal or not, and he's unremovable so long as 17 out of 49 Republican Senators don't defect.
Hell, he could strangle a reporter on national TV with his bare hands while doing a line of coke, and so long as 34 GOP Senators stonewalled, he'd be in office until the end!
Congress should be impeached. They've known all along, since 9/11, that an attack on Iran might be necessary. Dubya said then that you were either for us or against us, that if you fed, supported or sheltered a terrorist, you were a terrorist. That we were coming for you.
Congress didn't have the guts to complain then. The country wanted blood. It took them six years of constant sniveling and carping by their treasonous media pals for them to muddy the waters enough to work up the courage to start talking about impeachment. Dubya should make some of them disappear just as he's attacking Iran. We have to go into Iran. We have no choice. We have to stop them.
The St Petersburg Times has an interesting article on how difficult it is to look up lobbyists. Pages are scanned and not printed in text. Which makes it harder for a search engine to register. Lobbyists fees are filed under the firm they work for. There is no mention of the actual lobbyist in the report.
Lobbyists register by name - but fee reports are filed by law firm and alphabetized by the first name or initial of the law firm. Take lobbyist Ken Plante. You'll find his disclosure form under G. He works for Governmental Solutions LLC.
You would have to know that's where he works because there is no online index to look up what firm a lobbyist works for.
Could someone please introduce Bush to the theories and practice of Conflict Resolution?
Seymour Hersh on Iran, Syria, and the Middle East in the New Yorker gives us yet more reasons to get rid of Bush/Cheney. It seems like they are trying to create an entire world at war. Winner take all. Enslave to rest to corporations. Put all the people back into mystical religious servitude of the state controlled church.
Flynt Leverett, a former Bush Administration National Security Council official, told me that “there is nothing coincidental or ironic” about the new strategy with regard to Iraq. “The Administration is trying to make a case that Iran is more dangerous and more provocative than the Sunni insurgents to American interests in Iraq, when—if you look at the actual casualty numbers—the punishment inflicted on America by the Sunnis is greater by an order of magnitude,” Leverett said. “This is all part of the campaign of provocative steps to increase the pressure on Iran. The idea is that at some point the Iranians will respond and then the Administration will have an open door to strike at them.”
On Bush/Cheney’s certain war with Iran:
Still, the Pentagon is continuing intensive planning for a possible bombing attack on Iran, a process that began last year, at the direction of the President. In recent months, the former intelligence official told me, a special planning group has been established in the offices of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, charged with creating a contingency bombing plan for Iran that can be implemented, upon orders from the President, within twenty-four hours.
In the past month, I was told by an Air Force adviser on targeting and the Pentagon consultant on terrorism, the Iran planning group has been handed a new assignment: to identify targets in Iran that may be involved in supplying or aiding militants in Iraq. Previously, the focus had been on the destruction of Iran’s nuclear facilities and possible regime change.
Two carrier strike groups—the Eisenhower and the Stennis—are now in the Arabian Sea. One plan is for them to be relieved early in the spring, but there is worry within the military that they may be ordered to stay in the area after the new carriers arrive, according to several sources. (Among other concerns, war games have shown that the carriers could be vulnerable to swarming tactics involving large numbers of small boats, a technique that the Iranians have practiced in the past; carriers have limited maneuverability in the narrow Strait of Hormuz, off Iran’s southern coast.) The former senior intelligence official said that the current contingency plans allow for an attack order this spring. He added, however, that senior officers on the Joint Chiefs were counting on the White House’s not being “foolish enough to do this in the face of Iraq, and the problems it would give the Republicans in 2008.
Ofcourse, they are foolish enough.
On Saudi Arabia & the Palestinians:
Patrick Clawson, of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, depicted the Saudis’ coöperation with the White House as a significant breakthrough. “The Saudis understand that if they want the Administration to make a more generous political offer to the Palestinians they have to persuade the Arab states to make a more generous offer to the Israelis,” Clawson told me. The new diplomatic approach, he added, “shows a real degree of effort and sophistication as well as a deftness of touch not always associated with this Administration. Who’s running the greater risk—we or the Saudis? At a time when America’s standing in the Middle East is extremely low, the Saudis are actually embracing us. We should count our blessings.”
The Pentagon consultant had a different view. He said that the Administration had turned to Bandar as a “fallback,” because it had realized that the failing war in Iraq could leave the Middle East “up for grabs.”
No shit.I have to go clean up for the family birthday parties, including my own.
Labels: Grill Rats Comic Strip
Vern Buchanan is getting a warm welcome to Congress from District 13 residents.
For the second day in a row, anti-war demonstrators took to the street corner in front of Rep. Vern Buchanan’s Sarasota office.
A day after MoveOn.org held a rally calling for a troop withdrawal, CODEPINK took their turn in opposing the war in Iraq. The group, a women-initiated peace movement, said they wanted to show Buchanan that thousands of people in the district want the troops to come home.
Many of the protesters on Friday were the same people who had been on the corner on Thursday with MoveOn.Org.
But as the name CODEPINK suggests, the group of more than 40 protesters mostly wore pink clothes and chanted phrases like: “Hey, hey, ho, ho, Bush and Cheney have to go.”
Four months earlier, in December 1993, Republican strategiest and writer William Kristol, a Chief of Staff to former Vice President Dan Quayle and Chariman of the Project for the Republican Future, had sent a memorandum to Republican congressional leaders urging them to kill health care reform. The plan, he wrote in the memo, is a “serious political threat to the Republican party,” and its demise would be “a monumental setback for the President.” He wasn’t objecting to the plan on its merits; he was applying partisan political logic. He instructed Republicans to not negotiate on the bill or to compromise. The only good strategy, according to Kristol, was to kill the plan outright. The memo didn’t mention the millions of Americans without insurance.
I got linked and mentioned by name in the Star Tribune. I wonder if I should now call Pushing Rope "THEE place for news in and about Tampa."
In 2004, Jeb Bush and the Florida legislature halted enrollment into KidCare. The list of children on the waiting list quickly grew. Today it is 700,000. A recorded voice on the KidCare help line told listeners, ""It is not possible to tell you where your child is on the wait list or how soon he or she will be enrolled."
Some Republicans have admitted it was a mistake a few years ago when the GOP-controlled Legislature intentionally made it harder to enroll by requiring more documentation.
The Legislature also stopped spending money on active outreach -- having caseworkers go into communities to try to make sure families know about KidCare.
''If you don't know about the program, how will you be able to participate?'' asked Rep. Joyce Cusack, D-DeLand.
The nonbinding resolution is being filibustered in the Senate. Democrats are taking a different approach.
Washington - The White House plans to fight against any attempt by the Democratic-controlled Senate to revoke the 2002 authorization of the use of force in Iraq, a spokesman said Friday.
The Washington Post reported Democrats want to pass a narrower resolution that would set a goal of withdrawing combat troops by March 2008 and limiting US involvement to training Iraqi forces and border patrols.
Maybe this is what David Broder was talking about when he predicted Bush making a Clinton-like comeback. An American Research Group poll shows Bush's job approval rating bouced to 39 percent. The numbers bounced a whole 4 percent from January.
I love it when Tommy Duncan's passive aggressive tendencies come out. He is bitching about the St Petersberg Times sending him an exclusive about a man wanting a sex change. How dare the Times brag about their scoop. Especially, when it's Tommy's job to brag about scoops in his "Ready For the Cherry" post.
Sticks of Fire is quickly becoming THEE place for news in and about Tampa. Thanks to the helpful readers and contributors here, we were able to scoop both dailies twice within a week.
Litbrit has a must-read post on how the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense are trying to bury facts of how many sevice man and women have post traumatic stress disorder.
Like the hospitals, Taylor´s program could use more funds and more staff. But he´s determined to help vets, no matter what comes down from above.
¨They could cut our budget,¨ says Fletcher, who often carries a double load of clients, ¨and we would still be doing the work. Because you´ve got dedication out here. Money doesn´t affect us that much -- we´d use our own money to reach out to these guys.¨
Via Florida Politics: this falls into the too stupid not to be true category. Reginald Jones is an African American speaking at the Institute for Conservative Studies. The think tank is located on the Florida State University campus.
Nationally-known entertainer, entrepreneur and lecturer Reginald Jones will speak on "Betrayal: Sold Out by the Civil Rights Movement" at 8 p.m. Thursday, March 21, at Stetson University. His presentation, which is sponsored by Stetson’s College Republicans, will be in the Stetson Room of the Carlton Union Building, 131 E. Minnesota Ave. The talk is free and open to the public.
“I don't know why it's such a big deal,” he said. “I support racially exclusive organizations. You have the right to associate with who you will and disassociate with who you will.”
If that is true, the South will not hinder the Negro from voting--why should it, if the Negro vote, like the women's, merely swells the volume, but does not affect the ratio, of the vote? In some parts of the South, the White community merely intends to prevail on any issue on which there is corporate disagreement between Negro and White. The White community will take whatever measures are necessary to make certain that it has its way.
What are the issues? Is school integration one? The NAACP and others insist that the Negroes as a unit want integrated schools. Others disagree, contending that most Negroes approve the social sepaation of the races. What if the NAACP is correct, and the matter comes to a vote in a community in which Negroes predominate? The Negroes would, according to democratic processes, win the election; but that is the kind of situation the White community will not permit. The White community will not count the marginal Negro vote. The man who didn't count it will be hauled up before a jury, he will plead not guilty, and the jury, upon deliberation, will find him not guilty. A federal judge, in a similar situation, might find the defendant guilty, a judgment which would affirm the law and conform with the relevant political abstractions, but whose consequences might be violent and anarchistic.
"Some say the property-tax relief plan unveiled Wednesday by the leadership of the Florida House of Representatives is a bad idea. That kind of response doesn't give it credit. It is a harmonic convergence of bad ideas."
Liz Campbell is running for the Florida House district 3 seat. She is a great story of how the netroots has donated thousands of dollars to help her fledgling campaign. Daily Kos has raised $4850.
Liz Campbell's grassroots campaign is catching fire. Thanks to your generous support, Liz has been able to run radio ads and send out mailers in the special election for State House District #3 and has closed the race to a virtual tie.
Party polling shows Campbell, a retired Navy Chief and community activist, down by only three points, 41-38, to her Republican opponent with a week to go (Election Day is Feb. 27). Campbell and her opponent - a career politician - have near identical name recognition in the district. Once viewed as nearly an impossible seat to win, this race will now come down to turnout.
Have you ever noticed how the message on conservative websites is exactly the same as the Republican National Committee? Here is a pop quiz. Which quote came from the RNC and which from a pro-Republican website?
Checkers is running the insanely stupid Rapcat promotion. Checkers has take out bags that cats can wear. Anyone whom has owned a cat knows that kitty is going to go in a claw frenzy if forced to wear a takeout bag. It especially is not a good idea in the Tampa area.
Checkers is encouraging customers to dress up their cats with the bag, which is designed to look like a basketball jersey. But officials of Hillsborough County Animal Services warn that putting an unwilling cat into a "Rapcat" bag could be considered felony animal cruelty.
Charlie Crist has appointed Alex Sink, Jim Zingale and Holly Benson to review Florida's outsourcing contracts.
Crist appointed Sink and three other state officials to the new "council on efficient government," which was created by the 2006 Legislature. The council's first task will be a review of three large and troubled "outsourcing" projects left by Gov. Jeb Bush — the "People First" privatization of personnel services with Convergys, the MyFloridaMarketplace purchasing contract with Accenture and the Project Aspire contract that was until recently handled by BearingPoint.
"The review will serve as a starting point for evaluating how to reap the most value from the system, whether privatization has merit — if it does, we should use it, if it doesn't, we should not," Crist said at a news conference with Sink.
Before the 2002 election, Accenture gave $25,000 to Florida Republicans and none to Democrats, according to a Florida Division of Election records.
Last week the National Security Archive in Washington posted the U. S. war plan—the set of briefing slides used by Central Command (CENTCOM) chief General Tommy Franks to brief President Bush on “Polo Step,” CENTCOM’s Iraq invasion scheme. The PowerPoint slides were prepared for a series of presidential meetings held from December 2001 to August 2002. The slides summarized CENTCOM’s buildup and maneuver concepts for Bush’s deliberations. Bush backed Franks’ concept of “adjusting” Iraqi defenses by executing what amounted to a covert offensive air campaign. They would use forces already in the Persian Gulf region for the ostensible purpose of enforcing no-fly zones created after the first Gulf War. TomPaine.com has previously covered this operation (“The War Before the War ,” June 24, 2005), but the new evidence establishes an explicit link between the aerial offensive and the Iraq war plans.
Easy Street is a documentary on the St Petersburg homeless. The movie will show at Studio at 620 on February 24th at 7:00 PM.
Juan Cole puts Tony Blair's mission accomplished nonsense to rest.
This is a rout, there should be no mistake. The fractious Shiite militias and tribes of Iraq's South have made it impossible for the British to stay. They already left Sadr-controlled Maysan province, as well as sleepy Muthanna. They moved the British consulate to the airport because they couldn't protect it in Basra. They are taking mortar and rocket fire at their bases every night. Raiding militia HQs has not resulted in any permanent change in the situation. Basra is dominated by 4 paramilitaries, who are fighting turf wars with one another and with the Iraqi government over oil smuggling rights.
Blair is not leaving Basra because the British mission has been accomplished. He is leaving because he has concluded that it cannot be, and that if he tries any further it will completely sink the Labor Party, perhaps for decades to come.
Feministe will be hosting Help Us Help Ourselves on March 1st. The idea was created by Lauren. She explains it here.
So much for the discussion. Speaker Marco Rubio is opening pitching the idea of abolishing property taxes. They will be replaced by sales taxes.
TALLAHASSEE, FL – Following through on their 100 Ideas efforts, House Speaker Marco Rubio, Chairman Ray Sansom, and other House leaders this morning unveiled a comprehensive property tax relief proposal designed to cut Floridians’ property tax bills by nearly 20 percent this year. In addition to reducing property tax bills by nearly one-fifth, the House leaders’ relief plan caps the rate of revenue growth for both state and local government at reasonable levels and gives voters the option of abolishing property taxes on homestead properties and replacing it with a modest increase in the sales tax.