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Saturday, May 08, 2010

Pentagon bans 4 Gitmo reporters

The Pentagon on Thursday barred four journalists from military commissions at Guantanamo Bay because they published the name of a witness after being told not to.
The U.S. military wanted the witness identified only as "Interrogator No. 1" and forbade reporting his name during coverage of this week's Guantanamo hearings for a 23-year-old Canadian prisoner who is charged with killing a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan.
"Your reporters published the name of a witness whose identity was protected in court," Pentagon spokesman Col. Dave Lapan wrote in an e-mail sent to the news organizations Thursday LinkHere

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Family Values!!!!!! Hypocracy knows no bounds.

Latest Jobs Report Refutes Republican Claim That Stimulus Created Only Government Jobs

Today, the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that the U.S. economy added a better than expected 290,000 jobs last month. The BLS also revised the jobs number for both February and March upwards, putting both of those months into the black in terms of job creation. (Due to 805,00 discouraged workers “feeling better about their prospects” and resuming their search for work, the unemployment rate actually ticked up to 9.9 percent.)
The continued turnaround of the labor market is a strong sign that the economic stimulus package passed last year is doing what it is supposed to. But today’s report also refutes one of the favorite Republican talking points about the stimulus, which is that it only preserved government jobs: LinkHere

Stewart Takes On EVERYTHING: Mocks Rekers's Rentboy Romp, BP, Greece, And More

Friday, May 07, 2010

Alan Grayson Def Comedy Jam: Congressman Rails On Fed From House Floor, Demands Audit

"The Fed is an institution that has the power to hand out hundreds of billions of dollars on a whim. Because of that power, the Fed must always be subject to independent audit -- completely, and without reservation."
Rep. Alan Grayson (D-Fla.) mocked the Federal Reserve in what is best described as a standup comedy routine on the floor of the House of Representatives Thursday.
"I want to congratulate everyone in America, because you now own a hotel chain," Grayson began. "I know what you're thinking -- you're thinking: 'That's funny, I don't remember buying the Red Roof Inn.' But the Federal Reserve Bank, in its wisdom, has done it for you. The Federal Reserve Bank has seen to it that you have the pleasure of ownership of this delightful chain of hotels that extends from sea to shining sea."
"One of the properties," Grayson continued, "happens to be the Red Roof Inn convention center property, right in Orlando, right in my district -- I am so proud. I think I'll stop by there and ask for a free room."
Grayson maintains this verve while explaining a leveraged buyout gone bust that apparently left the Fed holding the Red Roof Inn as part of a pile of crappy assets. "The Federal Reserve became the sucker of last resort. And in doing so, the Federal Reserve made you -- you, America! -- the sucker of last resort." LinkHere

Dear Kangaroo,
Last year, I asked the Vice Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board who received $1 trillion in funds that the Fed handed out to domestic banks and financial institutions. He said, essentially, "I'm not going to tell you." More recently, I asked the Chairman of the Fed who received the half trillion dollars - that's $500,000,000,000 - that the Fed handed over to foreign central banks. He said he didn't know. Half a trillion dollars, and he doesn't know!
That kind of ignorance and arrogance must end. We need to audit the Fed. And now we're closer than ever.
The House passed our bill to conduct the first independent audit of the Fed in its 96-year history. Now it's time for the Senate to act.
A bipartisan group of Senators is pushing for an amendment to audit the Fed. This amendment is similar to the legislation that we passed in the House last year. It's called the Federal Reserve Accountability Amendment. It will ensure that the American people know to whom the Fed is lending our money.
A vote on the amendment is imminent. Time is of the essence. Visit UnmaskTheFed.com NOW to contact your Senators, and call on them to cosponsor and support the Federal Reserve Accountability Amendment.
The amendment is simple. If it passes, the Fed finally will be audited. Regarding all those billions that the Fed hands out like party favors, we will find out who, what, when, where and how. (We already know "why" - the answer to that question is "Wall Street Greed".) But if this amendment fails, the Fed can continue to make hand out our money to whomever it wants, without telling Congress or the American People.
We think we can pass the Senate Amendment, with your help. The amendment is already cosponsored by progressive heroes like Bernie Sanders, Pat Leahy and Russ Feingold. And joining us in this strange-bedfellows coalition are John McCain, Jim DeMint, David Vitter and Sam Brownback. (We hesitate to use the terms "bedfellows" and "David Vitter" in the same sentence, but that would be changing the subject.)
With such bipartisan support, you'd think that passing this legislation would be a slam dunk. Wrong. Wall Street bankers and their lobbyists are twisting arms and pouring millions into the campaign coffers of politicians on both sides of the political divide, to keep their sweetheart Fed loans under wraps. It's time to counter their influence-peddling by making the Senate listen to the united voice of the American People. (That would be you.)
It's time to step up the pressure. Contact your Senators NOW at UnmasktheFed.com.

Republicans won't budge on secret holds on Obama nominees

Source: CNN
Washington (CNN) – Frustrated Democrats went to the Senate floor Friday to seek Republican approval for a long list of administration nominees currently blocked by controversial secret holds placed by GOP senators.

But a Republican senator objected to each of them as they came up.

"Most of the people on the list, we don't know why they're sitting there. We don't even know who's making them sit there," complained Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Missouri, who is spearheading Democratic efforts to banish secret holds. "Enter stage left, the anonymous hold. Or as I like to call it, nobody can blame me cause they don't know who I am."

McCaskill said the delay in approving these nominees is particularly agonizing because most of them passed out of committee with little or no opposition.

"If there is a legitimate complaint or grievance against any nominee, I think any senator has a right to be heard and appeal to the body for a vote," Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the number two Democrat, said Thursday. "But secret holds, I think, have become a reprehensible part of the process here and need to end." LinkHere

Thursday, May 06, 2010

President Obama’s “Katrina.”

Today on Fox News during an interview with Karl Rove, host Jane Skinner noted that many in the media (and on the right) claim that the oil rig explosion in the Gulf is President Obama’s “Katrina.” Rove said he “wouldn’t compare this to Katrina,” but he then ran through a timeline of the events as if to accuse the White House of having a delayed response to the disaster. However, Skinner didn’t buy it, noting that the White House was involved from the beginning:

Similar to Rove, other conservatives are trying pin blame on the administration or to make the spill response “Obama’s Katrina.” “I think the parallels to Katrina are very real,” Newt Gingrich said yesterday. Today, MSNBC host and former GOP congressman Joe Scarborough called such a comparison “absolutely obscene,” adding that “anybody that draws that analogy is an idiot.”
Many on the right aren’t buying the delayed response argument either. Charles Krauthammer, the Weekly Standard’s Steve Hayes, and even Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R-MN) have all noted that the Obama administration responded appropriately to the Gulf oil spill. “What could [Obama] have done? … This is insane,” Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly said of the administration’s critics. LinkHere

Muslim Who Helped Foil Times Square Bombing: If I See A Terrorist, ‘I’m Going To Catch Him Before He Run Away’

As ThinkProgress reported yesterday, one of the key people who alerted police to the failed Times Square car bomb was Senagalese Muslim immigrant Aliou Niasse, who works as a street vendor there.
Yesterday, Democracy Now’s Anjali Kamat went to Times Square and interviewed Niasse about his experience alerting the police to the car bomb and his thoughts on Muslims who commit terrorism in the name of their faith. Niasse told Kamat that “Islam is not terrorist” and that if he sees any Muslim who tries to committ terrorism, he “is going to catch him before he runs away.” He also lamented the case of one “bad” Muslim being used to paint all Muslims with a broad brush:
KAMAT: You’re from Senegal?
NIASSE: Yeah I’m from Senegal, yeah.
KAMAT: You’re Muslim?
NIASSE: Yeah I’m Muslim.
NARRATION BY KAMAT: I asked Aliou Niasse what his reaction was when he found out the suspect in the attempted bombing was a Muslim-American born in Pakistan.
NIASSE: That’s not religion. Because the Islam religion is not terrorist. Because if I know this guy is Muslim, he do that, if I know that, I’m going to catch him before he run away.
KAMAT: How do you think Muslims are generally perceived in New York, by police, by law enforcement, when it comes to investigation of terrorism cases?
NIASSE: If one person is bad, they gonna say everybody, for his religion. That is, I think, wrong.

Two other street vendors also helped alert police to the presence of the car bomb. Handbag seller Duane Jackson and t-shirt vendor Lance Orton, both Vietnam veterans, smelled smoke from the burning car and ran to alert police officers. Niasse says he was the first to see the car, as it pulled up right in front of his photo stand. Given the fact that he doesn’t speak english well, he told a nearby vendor who then alerted the police.
Kamat notes that the two other street vendors who assisted police in foiling the bombing and catching the suspect have recieved national media attention and phone calls thanking them from President Obama and Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Kamat ends her report by saying, “Aliou’s not waiting for a call from the President, but as one of the first people to notice and speak out about the smoke rising from the [car bomb], he does want some recognition that a Muslim immigrant from Senegal might also be counted among the eyes and ears of New York City.” LinkHere

Palin Endorses Fiorina, Shaking Up GOP Primary

Sarah Palin waded into California's Senate race on May 6 by endorsing Carly Fiorina in the state's Republican primary race.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Army to be sued for war crimes over its role in Fallujah attacks

Parents of children with birth defects say Britain knew of US chemical weapons use
By Robert Verkaik, Law Editor
Allegations that Britain was complicit in the use of chemical weapons linked to an upsurge in child deformity cases in Iraq, are being investigated by the Ministry of Defence.
The case raises serious questions about the UK's role in the American-led offensive against the city of Fallujah in the autumn of 2004 where hundreds of Iraqis died. After the battle, in which it is alleged that a range of illegal weaponry was used, evidence has emerged of large numbers of children being born with severe birth defects.
Iraqi families who believe their children's deformities are caused by the deployment of the weapons have now begun legal proceedings against the UK Government. They accuse the UK Government of breaching international law, war crimes and failing to intervene to prevent a war crime. LinkHere

Democracy Now producer Nicole Salazar films her own arrest

Source: Democracy Now!
Amy Goodman and Democracy Now! Producers File Lawsuit Over RNC Arrests

Democracy Now! host and executive producer Amy Goodman along with producers Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar are filing a federal lawsuit today that challenges the police crackdown on journalists at the Republican National Convention in 2008.

Democracy Now! host and executive producer Amy Goodman along with producers Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar are filing a federal lawsuit today that challenges the police crackdown on journalists at the Republican National Convention in 2008.

The suit is filed against the Minneapolis and St. Paul police departments, the Ramsey County Sheriff and unidentified Secret Service personnel. The lawsuit challenges the policies and conduct of law enforcement during the RNC that resulted in the arrests, one of dozens among journalists arrested in St. Paul.

The lawsuit seeks compensation and an injunction against law enforcement’s unjustified encroachment on First Amendment rights, including freedom of the press and the independence of the media. LinkHere

Tarryl Clark, Michele Bachmann Challenger, Launches Website: 'Michele Bachmann Said WHAT?!'

Democrat Tarryl Clark, who is vying to unseat Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann in the election for Minnesota's sixth district House seat, has set-up a virtual one-stop shop for the craziest comments the conservative congresswoman has made over the years.
On the new Website, "Michele Bachmann Said WHAT?!", Clark invites her supporters to have some fun with Bachmann's most outrageous remarks -- from charging that health care reform amounts to "gangster government" to falsely claiming that "100% of our economy was private prior to September of 2008."
Visitors to the Clark campaign's new site can choose from any of a number of ways to have a laugh at Bachmann's expense. A "name that quote quiz" tests visitors' knowledge of Bachmann babble and a "sound board" feature offers audio of a selection of controversial quotes from the Tea Party favorite.
The Minneapolis Star Tribune notes that Clark's creation of MicheleBachmannsaidwhat.com is not first time the Democratic candidate has turned to the web to boost her campaign seeking to defeat Bachmann:
It's not Clark's first attempt to go viral -- an adjective often associated with all things Bachmann. She also owns mytengrandphoto.com, a site lampooning Bachmann's fundraiser with Sarah Palin, and has studded her campaign website with custom YouTube videos and an interactive map.

Wife of slain officer speaks out against law

Media Ignore The Fact That Man Who Alerted Police To Failed Times Square Bombing Is A Muslim Immigrant

The chief suspect in the case of the failed Times Square car bombing is Pakistani-American Faisal Shahzad, who has confessed to the plot. Much of the media has latched onto Shahzad’s Muslim faith and his Pakistani identity, making inflammatory remarks and suggestions about Muslims and Pakistanis:
– CNN contributor and Redstate.com blogger Erick Erickson complained that the words “muslim” and “Islam” are “not mentioned” enough in stories about Shahzad. He wrote, “It really is pathetic that you’re more likely to see the words “racist” and “Republican” together in the newspaper these days than “terrorism” and “Islam.” [5/4/2010]
– Hate radio host Neal Boortz tweeted, “OMG! The Times Square Bomber is a Muslim! Shocker! Who would have believed it?” [5/4/2010]
– The cover of today’s Washington Post-published Express features a black-and-white photo of Shahzad with the sensationalist headline “MADE IN PAKISTAN” [5/5/2010]
Yet one fact being ignored in the American media’s sensationalist narrative about the failed bombing is that the man who was responsible for police finding the bomb was Muslim. The UK’s Times Online reports that Aliou Niasse, a Senagalese Muslim immigrant who works as a photograph vendor on Times Square, was the first to bring the smoking car to the police’s attention:
Aliou Niasse, a street vendor selling framed photographs of New York, said that he was the first to spot the car containing the bomb, which pulled up right in front of his cart on the corner of 45th street and Broadway next to the Marriott hotel.
“I didn’t see the car pull up or notice the driver because I was busy with customers. But when I looked up I saw that smoke appeared to be coming from the car. This would have been around 6.30pm.”
“I thought I should call 911, but my English is not very good and I had no credit left on my phone, so I walked over to Lance, who has the T-shirt stall next to mine, and told him. He said we shouldn’t call 911. Immediately he alerted a police officer near by,” said Mr Niasse, who is originally from Senegal and who has been a vendor in Times Square for about eight years. LinkHere

Sens. Kyl And Roberts Pretend Republicans Never Embraced The Slogan ‘Drill, Baby, Drill’

How soon they forget!!!!!!!!Republican battle cry” of the 2008 campaign
In the wake of the massive BP oil spill, Senate Republicans are disowning the catchphrase “Drill, Baby, Drill,” claiming that Republicans never endorsed it. Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) and Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS) attempted to distance themselves and their party from the phrase yesterday, pretending not to know who popularized it, and dismissing the slogan as something from “two, three years ago”:
“That was not a Senate Republican phrase,” Kyl said. “I think there was a candidate that used that. I think our phrase was ‘drill here, drill now,’ meaning here in the United States and as quickly as oil and gas leases are going.”
Roberts said Republicans were always uneasy with the catchphrase.
“I don’t know about the slogan. The slogan was what, two, three years ago and basically we had a lot of opposition to it anyway.”
It seems hard to believe that Kyl couldn’t think of which “candidate” used the phrase. It was GOP presidential nominee John McCain, who happened to be a Republican senator. He and vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin made the slogan the “Republican battle cry” of the 2008 campaign, and Palin repeatedly trumpeted the catchphrase. She even corrected Vice President Biden during their debate when he misquoted the slogan, telling him, “The chant is ‘drill, baby, drill.’” McCain, meanwhile, told a crowd chanting the phrase, “you’re right, pal. Drill, baby, drill. Drill offshore and drill now.” LinkHere

Pro-Gun GOP Senators Refuse To Close 'Terror Gap'

Mayor Bloomberg: Terror Suspects Are Buying Guns -- And The FBI Can't Stop Them
New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg's appeal to what he called "common sense" at a congressional hearing Wednesday morning failed to sway two Republican senators who said that giving the government the ability to block the purchase of guns by suspected terrorists would undermine the Second Amendment's right to bear arms.
"Shouldn't FBI agents have the authority to block sales of guns and explosives to those on the terror watchlists -- and deemed too dangerous to fly? I actually believe that they should," Bloomberg told senators. Federal law currently only allows the government to block guns sales for a very limited number of reasons, and being on that list is not one of them. (For more background, see Tuesday's article on the subject.)
"This common-sense legislation is not anti-gun -- it's anti-terrorist," chimed in Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), the sponsor of a bill that would close what Bloomberg has called a "terror gap."
But GOP Senators Susan Collins of Maine and Lindsay Graham of South Carolina wouldn't go along.
Admitting that "at first blush" the bill "seems to be an obvious step that we should take," Collins said that many people on the FBI's watchlist don't belong there. "None of us wants a terrorist to be able to purchase a gun, but neither should we want to infringe upon a Constitutional right of law-abiding Americans," she said.
Graham described the bill as an instrument of those who would ban guns altogether. "We're talking about a constitutional right here," he said, explaining that he could not support a bill that would force "innocent Americans" to "pay the cost of going to court to get their gun rights back."
Graham wasn't nearly as concerned about rights when he launched into a disquisition on the treatment of American citizens accused of terrorism. "I am all into national security," he said. "I want them to stop reading these guys Miranda rights." LinkHere


NEW YORK — Three of the top five choices in the Southern Republican Leadership Conference's recent straw poll on favorite 2012 presidential candidates had more than one thing in common: They're all on the Fox News Channel payroll.
Mike Huckabee hosts his own weekend show at Fox, Newt Gingrich gets frequent air time as an analyst and Sarah Palin is a celebrated recent hire. Mitt Romney, who won the informal sample, does not work for Fox.
A Fox job certainly isn't a requirement for a Republican would-be president. Yet its stature as a town square for opponents of the Obama administration places Fox in what may be a unique position of influence for a television network.
"Fox has almost replaced the Heritage Foundation and AEI (American Enterprise Institute) as the White House in waiting for the Republican Party," said Eric Burns, president of Media Matters for America, a liberal media watchdog.
Political experts say the Fox exposure carries some distinct advantages – and some dangers, too.
Fox has clearly sharpened its tone since the last election cycle, due in part to the arrival of Glenn Beck and making Sean Hannity a solo act. The foil of MSNBC as a liberal alternative and failures of CNN's impartial approach gave Fox an incentive to ramp things up, and its executives have been rewarded with soaring ratings and profits. (Fox spokeswoman Irena Briganti did not return calls for comment.)
For politicians with future ambitions, a regular TV gig can keep visibility high. Pat Buchanan said his perch on CNN's "Crossfire" was indispensable in helping him create a national following for White House runs in 1992 and 1996.
"Undeniably, a TV personality on Fox News would benefit immensely from his name recognition, ability to articulate issues and the following Fox has, far larger now even than what we had when CNN was the only game in town and `Crossfire' the only conservative-liberal show," he said.
Political hopefuls need to be seen as more than just TV stars to translate that following, said Buchanan, who worked in the Reagan and Nixon administrations. LinkHere

The New is what we say it is!!!!!!!!!!

Whoever controls the media, controls your mind

Kangaroo Down Under

Controls the minds of the uneducated, non thinking populus

Murdoch forced to defend why Fox continues to ‘subsidize’ Beck’s show.

Color of Change and Stop Beck have been waging an aggressive campaign to convince Fox News advertisers to boycott Glenn Beck’s show. So far, 123 companies have dropped him, and his broadcast in the UK has been running without ads for nearly three months. Yesterday on a conference call about its third quarter earnings, News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch had to defend the fact that Fox News is keeping Beck on:
Murdoch was asked on the company’s third quarter analyst call about the departure of advertisers, many of whom have left the show in an organized protest that began last year when Beck said President Obama had a “deep-seated hatred of white people.” One wanted to know how long Fox News would “subsidize” the show, which is “filled with house ads.”
“It’s not subsidizing the show at all,” Murdoch fired back, adding that the theatrical Beck gives “a terrific kickoff” to the Fox News evening lineup.
Although Beck is still a strong lead-in for other Fox shows, he has “seen his audience fall almost 30% since the start of the year, from about 2.9 million viewers in January to 2.1 million in April.”

Raymond Towler, Convicted Rapist, Exonerated By DNA Tests After 30 Years In Prison

CLEVELAND — An Ohio man tasted freedom for the first time in nearly 30 years Tuesday after DNA evidence showed he did not rape an 11-year-old girl and a judge vacated his conviction.
"It finally happened, I've been waiting," Raymond Towler, 52, said as he hugged sobbing family members in the courtroom.
He walked from the courthouse, arms around his family members, amid the smell of freshly cut grass, blooming trees and a brisk wind off Lake Erie. Asked how he would adjust, Towler responded: "Just take a deep breath and just enjoy life right now." LinkHere

I understand mistakes...but...interesting
Races of the 253 exonerees:
150 African Americans
75 Caucasians
21 Latinos
2 Asian American
5 whose race is unknown

Times Scare

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Doomed to repeat it.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Obama's Juggling Act: Dealing With A Deluge Of Crises

WASHINGTON — Unpredictable and tough to solve, the stack of problems on President Barack Obama's desk is growing unwieldy. It's presenting him with a tough juggling act.
Two wars, a financial crisis, lingering high unemployment and an exhausting battle over health care. And that was just the start.
Now throw in an environmental disaster in the Gulf of Mexico and an attempted car bombing in Times Square. And there are other pressing matters, such as dealing with the increasing menace of Iran's nuclear program, trying to get the Middle East peace process back on track, searching for a new Supreme Court justice and trying to persuade Congress to approve the most sweeping rewrite of financial rules in 70 years.
And Obama is striving to juggle these problems while he and his party brace for potentially big midterm election losses in November.
"Safe to say, there is a lot on the president's plate," White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said at his daily briefing on Monday when pressed by a reporter on Obama's timetable for interviewing and selecting a new Supreme Court justice. LinkHere
IrishLover -
. Won the election against all odds
- Faced down the worst financial crisis since the great depression
- Reached out across the world to signal a new era of Global community
- Showed Leadership in tackling the most pressing problems of today
- Weathered the season(s) of h8 and lies and fear
- Guided the military to a plan of action contrary to the previous administrations' dithering
- Challenged members of congress to roll up their sleeves and get to work
- Kept focus on and ACHIEVED the goal of expanded health care reform (a CENTURY of trying)
- Achieved access to millions more Americans to seek out an affordable quality education


Don't count this man down and out Republicans . *wink
priceless (.) period..


Your irish friend ,
An Irish Lad


I wish I could remember all the of the challenges that President Obama faced when he entered the White House, and the things that he has accomplished. Can anyone help me????

1. Ecomony was on the blink and a possibility of another Great Depression
2. Panademic (SWINE FLU)
3. Pirates on the High Seas
4. The (2) American Reporters that was jailed in IRAN was released
5. 2 Wars raging in the Middle East
6. The nomination of Sonia Sotomayer for the Supreme Court
7. Stimulus Package
8. Liddy Ledbetter Law which now make it illegal to pay man more than women for the same job 9. Healthcare Reform
10. Helping to change the world in a positive light about America
11. Must handle the Immigration Laws in America
12. Oil Spill in the Gulf
13. Terrorism here in America, from the underwear bomber to the latest one in New York
14. Regulating Wall Street

It is amazing all the challenges that he has faced and all the others that are still lingering. I am
so grateful we have such a intelligent and thoughtful President!!!!

How easily they forget 8 years of Bush Cheney, just a reminder

Look at our society: American's prefer force over negotiation, simple explanations over actual understanding, sound bits over actual news, grand gestures over actual accomplishments.

Monday, May 03, 2010

Pelosi: Bush Admin Barred Officials From Briefing Congress On Impending Financial Crisis in Fall 2008

Pelosi claims Bush blocked briefings on developing crisis until last moment.

Obama Thanks Duane Jackson, Times Square Vendor, For Foiling Bomb Plot

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama has telephoned Times Square vendor Duane Jackson to commend him for alerting authorities to the SUV used in the failed car bombing in New York City.
The 58-year-old handbag vendor from Buchanan, N.Y., said he saw the car Saturday and wondered who had left it behind. Jackson said he looked inside the vehicle and saw keys in the ignition, and alerted a passing mounted New York City police officer.
The White House said Obama thanked Jackson for his vigilance and for acting quickly to prevent a serious incident from occurring. LinkHere

Gulf Oil Spill: Government Regulator Downplayed Environmental Impact Of Spill

In the wake of the growing environmental catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico, BP is being blamed for discounting the potential for a massive oil spill and underestimating its effects.
But the federal agency tasked with oversight of offshore oil drilling may be even more responsible for understating the impact of a spill in the environmentally-sensitive area.
In a 2007 environmental impact statement for the Western and Central Planning Area Sales, which includes the Macondo Prospect where the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded on April 20, the Interior Department's Minerals Management Service downplayed the potential for environmental damage.
In the document which covers oil drilling leases from 2007-2012, MMS assesses the potential impact of oil spills and blowouts on wetlands, marine mammals, commercial fishing, economic impacts, and water quality, among other factors (emphasis mine):
- "Offshore oil spills resulting from a proposed action are not expected to damage significantly any wetlands along the Gulf Coast... Overall, impacts to wetland habitats from an oil spill associated with activities related to a proposed action would be expected to be low and temporary." - "The effect of proposed-action-related oil spills on commercial fishing is expected to cause less than a 1 percent decrease in standing stocks of any population, commercial fishing efforts, landings, or value of those landings. Any affected commercial fishing activity would recover within 6 months. At the expected level of impact, the resultant influence on commercial fishing activities from a proposed action would be negligible and indistinguishable from variations due to natural causes." LinkHere
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