The Republican Party's evolution into a crime syndicate is now complete - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 51 (permalink) Old 03-27-2007, 09:52 AM Thread Starter
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The Republican Party's evolution into a crime syndicate is now complete

Lucky Luciano? Jimmy Hoffa? You've seen them, mobsters, racketeers, Mafia hit men: I reserves da right to take da fif admendement!

Justice official to plead the Fifth before Senate panel -

Ever noticed how the conservatives on this board spend most of their time excusing crime? Perjurers found guilty by our system of justice, are somehow not really guilty. Border patrol agents who shoot people and then tamper with evidence and end up spending 12 years in prison are their heros. Gonzalez here has obviously committed perjury, and of course, they will defend him. Wolfowitz, Rumsfled, routinely gave perjured testimony to Congress. Bush, an obvious war criminal, is a god to them who must be defended at all costs, lest his fallibility cause their religion to collapse. But what are they really? A crime syndicate, men who game the system of democracy in order to deliver this country to corporate oil fascists and the rest of their super-rich pals. They need a docile population, spied on, afraid to speak, deprived of their most basic rights while they ply the lies. Gonzalez, the Toture Boy, he is the kingpin of the whole rotten system, a Justice Department hijacked to be the people's enemy instead of their defender, exposed, for all to see.

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post #2 of 51 (permalink) Old 03-27-2007, 10:26 AM
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well, i was trying to find the quote of his that i read last night but i was unable. however it went something like this: 'i don't want to resign because we're doing good things to the american people.' is that a freaking joke or what? i sure hope all these mother fuckers face the god damned fireing squad someday. fucking justice.. my arse.

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post #3 of 51 (permalink) Old 03-27-2007, 10:40 AM Thread Starter
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Again, this country is being saved by the return of Congressional oversight. Does anyone even think Tom Delay's Congress would have given a shit about this? Of course, the remaining GOP fascists will filibuster any chance to change any of this illegal and unconstitutional "Patriot" Act :

Mueller defends FBI performance on terrorism
Agency chief speaks to senators skeptical about Patriot Act powers
FBI Director Robert Mueller testifies Tuesday at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington.

Updated: 21 minutes ago
WASHINGTON - (AP) FBI Director Robert Mueller labored Tuesday to persuade skeptical senators that the FBI can properly use its terrorism-era authority to gather telephone, e-mail and financial records of Americans and foreigners while pursuing terrorists.

He appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee after the Justice Department inspector general revealed abuses in the FBI’s use of documents called national security letters to gather such data without approval from a judge.

“We’re going to be re-examining the broad authorities we granted the FBI in the Patriot Act,” Committee Chairman Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., told Mueller.

Mueller urged the panel not to revise the law.

“The statute did not cause the errors,” Mueller said. “The FBI’s implementation did.”

He said he instituted procedures to police the use of these letters. “What I did not do and should have done is put in a compliance program to be sure those procedures were followed,” the FBI chief added.

He said he has now begun to do that, has ordered an audit to determine the full extent of the problem and to determine if any agents should be disciplined.

“We are committed to demonstrating to committee, the Congress and the American people that we will correct the deficiencies,” Mueller said.

“I still have very serious qualms,” Leahy replied.

Specter cites ‘failure by the bureau’
Citing the inspector general report on national security letters and his previous reports criticizing FBI reporting of terrorist cases, of weapons and laptops losses, Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., said, “Every time we turn around there is another enormous failure by the bureau.”

“There’s another headline virtually on a daily basis,” Specter added, citing a Washington Post report Tuesday that agents had submitted inaccurate data to a court that issues warrants for foreign intelligence surveillance.

“The question arises as to whether any director can handle this job and whether the bureau itself can handle the job,” Specter said, proposing that the panel give serious consideration to establishing a separate domestic intelligence agency like Britain’s MI-5.

Mueller said he had reduced the problem since learning of it in 2005 but noted that the warrant applications are very long and contain thousands of facts.

“I’m not impressed with your assertion that there are thousands of facts,” Specter said. “That’s your job. You asked for these powers; we gave you them. If these applications are wrong, you’re subjecting people to an invasion of privacy that ought not to be issued.”

Gonzales to appear April 17
The committee plans to hear April 17 from Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, who is struggling to keep his job amid criticism of the NSL abuses and the firings of eight U.S. attorneys.

“Last year the administration sought new powers in the Patriot Act to appoint U.S. Attorneys without Senate confirmation and to more freely use National Security Letters,” Leahy said in opening remarks. “The administration got these powers, and they have badly bungled both.”

In a review of headquarters files and a sampling of four of the FBI’s 56 field offices, Inspector General Glenn A. Fine found 48 violations of law or presidential directives during 2003-2005. He estimates there may be as many as 3,000 violations throughout the FBI that have not been identified or reported.

When Fine testified before the Senate panel last week, Leahy said, “In light of this report, we need to consider whether Congress went too far” in the Patriot Act in removing restrictions on FBI use of national security letters.

Bipartisan warning
In a House Judiciary Committee hearing with Fine, Republicans and Democrats warned the FBI could lose that broad power.

If the FBI doesn’t move swiftly to correct the mistakes and problems, “you probably won’t have NSL authority,” said Rep. Dan Lungren, R-Calif., a supporter of the power.

In 1986, Congress first authorized FBI agents to obtain electronic records without approval from a judge, using national security letters.

The letters can be used to acquire e-mails, telephone, travel records and financial information, like credit and bank transactions. They can be sent to telephone and Internet access companies, universities, public interest organizations, nearly all libraries, financial and credit companies.

In 2001, the Patriot Act eliminated any requirement that the records belong to someone under suspicion. Now an innocent person’s records can be obtained if FBI field agents consider them relevant to an ongoing terrorism or spying investigation.
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post #4 of 51 (permalink) Old 03-27-2007, 10:49 AM
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The administration has only itself to blame.
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post #5 of 51 (permalink) Old 03-27-2007, 11:03 AM Thread Starter
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They essentially self-destructed, didn't they?

Poll backs subpoenas of Bush aides
Updated 2h 37m ago | Comments 111 | Recommend 36 E-mail | Save | Print | Reprints & Permissions |

By Susan Page, USA TODAY
WASHINGTON — Americans overwhelmingly support a congressional investigation into White House involvement in the firing of eight U.S. attorneys, and they say President Bush and his aides should answer questions about it without invoking executive privilege.

In a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken Friday-Sunday, respondents said by nearly 3-to-1 that Congress should issue subpoenas to force White House officials to testify.

There is skepticism about the motives of both the administration and congressional Democrats:

FIFTH AMENDMENT: Gonzales aide invoking right to avoid incrimination

•By 53%-26%, respondents say the U.S. attorneys were dismissed primarily for political reasons, not because they weren't doing their jobs well — as Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has said.

•By 59%-30%, they say Democrats are investigating the dismissals mostly for political advantage, not because of ethical concerns.

Even so, the findings underscore the president's risks. The White House last week offered to allow adviser Karl Rove and other aides to answer questions — but only in private, not under oath, and without a transcript being prepared.

The Senate and House judiciary committees have authorized subpoenas.

The poll finds little sympathy for the administration's claim that White House aides shouldn't have to testify to ensure that a president gets candid advice. By 68%-26%, those surveyed say the president should drop the claim of executive privilege in this case.

EDWARDS GAINS SUPPORT: 2-1 approve of staying in race

That's similar to the public's view in 1998 when asked if President Clinton's aides should testify about the Monica Lewinsky affair.

Interest in this controversy is much lower than it was in the Lewinsky scandal, however. Only 14% are following the U.S. attorneys story very closely; 32% are following it somewhat closely. One in five say they aren't following it at all.

On whether Gonzales should resign, Americans are split: 38% say he should go and 38% say he should stay; 24% have no opinion.

Partisanship plays a big role. Republicans by 52%-20% say Gonzales should stay in the job. Democrats by 53%-27% say he should resign. Independents divide almost evenly.
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post #6 of 51 (permalink) Old 03-27-2007, 11:05 AM
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Wow -- a Justice official taking the fifth -- that is freakin' hilarious.

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post #7 of 51 (permalink) Old 03-27-2007, 11:09 AM
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Bunch of wack jobs only Jayhawk will support. What a fucking joke this whole bunch has turned out.

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post #8 of 51 (permalink) Old 03-27-2007, 11:13 AM
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I can already hear the arguments of your side is corrupt too so that makes our so called side super ok.
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post #9 of 51 (permalink) Old 03-27-2007, 11:23 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by GermanStar
Wow -- a Justice official taking the fifth -- that is freakin' hilarious.
It has to be utterly unprecedented - it is an oversight hearing, for chrissakes, what the hell have those people been up to? Fired guys from their own party in the middle of the term, then lie about why they did it - what were they on too? Why was the woman who bagged Duke Cunningham fired? There has got to be more here than meets the eye.
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post #10 of 51 (permalink) Old 03-27-2007, 12:14 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by elau
Bunch of wack jobs only Jayhawk will support. What a fucking joke this whole bunch has turned out.
Funny you should mention that. Even their own rats are leaving the ship. Even Plame-outer Novak is getting out the hatchet:

A President All Alone

By Robert D. Novak
Monday, March 26, 2007; Page A15

Two weeks earlier on Capitol Hill, there was a groundswell of Republican demands -- public and private -- that President Bush pardon Scooter Libby. Last week, as Alberto Gonzales came under withering Democratic fire, there were no public GOP declarations of support amid private predictions of the attorney general's demise.

Republican leaders in Congress, who asked not to be quoted by name, predicted early last week that Gonzales would fall because the Justice Department botched the firing of eight U.S. attorneys. By week's end, they stipulated that the president would not sack his longtime aide and that Gonzales would leave only on his own initiative. But there was still an ominous lack of congressional support for the attorney general.

"Gonzales never has developed a base of support for himself up here," a House Republican leader told me. But this is less a Gonzales problem than a Bush problem. With nearly two years remaining in his presidency, George W. Bush is alone. In half a century, I have not seen a president so isolated from his own party in Congress -- not Jimmy Carter, not even Richard Nixon as he faced impeachment.

Republicans in Congress do not trust their president to protect them. That alone is sufficient reason to withhold statements of support for Gonzales, because such a gesture could be quickly followed by his resignation under pressure. Rep. Adam Putnam (Fla.), the highly regarded young chairman of the House Republican Conference, praised Donald Rumsfeld in November only to see him sacked shortly thereafter.

But not many Republican lawmakers would speak up for Gonzales even if they were sure Bush would stick with him. He is the least popular Cabinet member on Capitol Hill, even more disliked than Rumsfeld was. The word most often used by Republicans to describe the management of the Justice Department under Gonzales is "incompetent."

Attorneys general in recent decades have ranged from skilled political operatives close to the president (most notably Bobby Kennedy under John F. Kennedy) to nonpolitical lawyers detached from the president (such as Ed Levi under Gerald Ford). Gonzales is surely close to Bush, but nobody would accuse him of being skilled at politics. He puzzled and alarmed conservatives with a January speech in which he claimed that he would take over from the White House the selection of future federal judicial nominees.

The saving grace that some Republicans find in the dispute over U.S. attorneys is that, at least temporarily, it draws attention away from debate over an unpopular war. But the overriding feeling in the Republican cloakroom is that the Justice Department and the White House could not have been more inept in dealing with the president's unquestioned right to appoint -- and replace -- federal prosecutors.

The I-word (incompetence) is also used by Republicans in describing the Bush administration generally. Several of them I talked to cited a trifecta of incompetence: the Walter Reed hospital scandal, the FBI's misuse of the USA Patriot Act and the U.S. attorneys firing fiasco. "We always have claimed that we were the party of better management," one House leader told me. "How can we claim that anymore?"

The reconstruction of the Bush administration after the president's reelection in 2004, though a year late, clearly improved his team. Yet the addition of extraordinary public servants Josh Bolten, Tony Snow and Rob Portman has not changed the image of incompetence.

A few Republicans blame incessant attacks from the new Democratic majority in Congress for that image. Many more say today's problems in the administration derive from the continuing impact of yesterday's mistakes. The answer that is not entertained by the president's most severe GOP critics, even when not speaking for quotation, is that this is just the governing style of George W. Bush and will not change while he is in the Oval Office.

Regarding Libby and Gonzales, unofficial word from the White House is not reassuring. One credible source says the president will never -- not even on the way out of office in January 2009 -- pardon Libby. Another equally good source says the president will never ask Gonzales to resign. That exactly reverses the prevailing Republican opinion in Congress. Bush is alone.
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