• Article: Obama 'wasted' reform chances by Edward Luce. According to Nicholas Brady, the former US Treasury secretary.

    "You cannot conduct the biggest overhaul in 75 years by trying not to offend too many people. When you're relying on the chairmen of committees on Capitol Hill to help get healthcare reform through, or cap and trade, then you don't want to offend them by removing their turf. Again, what's the hurry? Why not take the time to get this right?"

  • RGE Monitor. Nouriel Roubini. China is looking at an alternative reserve currency. The BRIC countries are looking at a basket of currencies.
  • Major riff: Did Goldman Sachs cause both the 1929 and 2008 depressions? We're going to see it again as they are not fixing the economy. What do we do?
  • Article: The Great American Bubble, Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone.
    "From tech stocks to high gas prices, Goldman Sachs has engineered every major market manipulation since the Great Depression - and they're about to do it again"
  • Cap and Trade squeaked past the House, Dennis Kucinich and Peter DeFazio were two with high integrity who voted against it.
  • Book: "The Great Crash of 1929 "By John Kenneth Galbraith. It has a chapter, "In Goldman We Trust".
  • Article: Bernard Madoff gets 150 years in prison.
  • Bumper Music: Better Than I Ought To Be, Randy Rogers Band.
  • Article: Obama Arrives at a Critical Crossroads by Pam Martens. Our Economy Is Going to Keep Tanking Until We Stop Shoveling Billions to Rich People.
    "In a nutshell, it's the $1 Billion that Sandy Weill extracted from Citigroup as its former CEO and Chairman that's the problem; it's the $42 million condo he bought that's depriving 140 other people from having $300,000 to buy a home ready to go into foreclosure for want of a buyer. It's the hundreds of millions Weill is throwing around to plaster his name and his wife's name on buildings that could be in the hands of 10,000 consumers going out to buy Chrysler and GM cars now gathering dust on the lots of dealers about to go bust. ...

    According to March 31, 2009 data from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, there are 8,246 FDIC insured institutions with total assets of $13.5 Trillion and domestic deposits of $7.5 Trillion. Four institutions, Bank of America Corporation, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Wells Fargo & Co. and Citigroup Inc., four institutions out of 8,246, control 35% of all the insured domestic deposits and 46% of the assets according to the March 31, 2009 figures from the FDIC.

  • Bumper Music: Come On In, Brad Paisley (video).
  • Bumper Music: You can leave your hat on, Randy Newman.
  • Article: Naked ex-mayor arrested at campsite.
  • Go to thomhartmann.com for free live stream with Thom's newscast, Jim Hightower, WINS news, environmental news. Thom is back home in Portland so the free webcam is working too.
  • The Glass Steagall Act.
  • Quote: "A criminal is a person with predatory instincts who has not sufficient capital to form a corporation. Howard Scott."
  • Capitalism and political systems. The police in Singapore trashed Thom's hotel room.
  • Judges should recuse themselves and so should people who write laws. Brian Baird's bill against Congress folks' insider trading.
  • Bumper Music: You're the Voice, Heart (video).
  • Article: Lee Terry Curses At D.C. Driver While Jaywalking.
  • Article: Obama Opposes Trade Sanctions in Climate Bill By John M. Broder.
    " “At a time when the economy worldwide is still deep in recession and we’ve seen a significant drop in global trade,” Mr. Obama said, “I think we have to be very careful about sending any protectionist signals out there.”

    He added, “I think there may be other ways of doing it than with a tariff approach.”

  • The power of corporate lobbies. We pay in the results of the pollution.
  • Democracy, great experiment over. Pessimism. Thom is more optimistic than he has ever been, because people are waking up. Health care is the big one. The fascist arm of the Republican Party is positioning itself to pick up the pieces. There are good liberal sites like Huffington Post, OpEdNews, Buzzflash, Common Dreams, TruthDig, TPMMuckraker ad they outnumber the right wing's. The word is getting out there.
  • “CIA Memos…did they or didn’t they authorize torture?”
  • Quote:
    "Should any American soldier be so base and infamous as to injure any Canadian or Indian, in his person or property, I do most earnestly enjoin you to bring him to such severe and exemplary punishment, as the enormity of the crime may require. Should it extend to death itself, it will not be disproportioned to its guilt, at such a time, and in such a cause. * * * * I also give in charge to you, to avoid all disrespect to the religion of the country and its ceremonies. * * While we are contending for our own liberty, we should be very cautious not to violate the rights of conscience in others, ever considering that God alone is the judge of the hearts of men, and to him only, in this case, are they answerable."
    George Washington, charge to the Northern Expeditionary Force, Sept. 14, 1775.
  • Quote:
    "Treat them with humanity, and let them have no reason to Complain of our Copying the brutal example of the British Army in their treatment of our unfortunate brethren…. Provide everything necessary for them on the road."
    George Washington.
  • The British soldiers started surrendering in droves, became citizens.
  • Article: FERRARA: Go clueless on terrorist plans? Tying up our defenses with bonds of litigation, Peter Ferrara, June 17, 2009.
    "Raging members of Congress, agitated TV commentators and hyperventilating bloggers have called for prosecuting George W. Bush administration officials they claim broke the law and committed war crimes by participating in what they say was illegal "torture" of captured high-level accused terrorists.

    A federal District Court judge in California ruled last week that convicted terrorist Jose Padilla can sue former Bush administration lawyer John Yoo for legal memos he wrote advising the administration about the legality of the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques.

    President Obama himself has denounced Bush interrogation policies as "torture" and ordered all such interrogations ended in his administration. However, he has declined to prosecute or even investigate any of the CIA operatives who carried out such interrogations, on the grounds that they were just acting under orders and with the legal approval of more senior Bush officials.

    So the focus has turned to those more senior officials and, in particular, on the lawyers from the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel who wrote memos concluding that the enhanced interrogation techniques, including waterboarding, used on the captured terrorists were legal under applicable U.S. law. One commentator on a CNN broadcast, Lanny Davis, called for prosecuting former Vice President Dick Cheney, on the grounds Mr. Cheney has defended the Bush interrogation policies too vigorously.

    At the American Civil Rights Union (ACRU), a conservative alternative to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), we have reviewed the four challenged legal memos. They add up to 124 single-spaced pages of careful legal reasoning reviewing all applicable statutes, treaties, cases and word definitions and applying that law to a thorough discussion of the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques used under President Bush.

    We found that those memos involve a thorough, well-reasoned, praiseworthy legal effort and analysis. We agree that their conclusions as to the legality of waterboarding and the other CIA enhanced interrogation techniques are correct under applicable law, and we are prepared to debate that point in any forum. A complete report containing our analysis is on our Web site at www.theacru.org.

  • Guest: Peter Ferrara, Legal Director, General Counsel, American Civil Rights Union. He was in President Reagan's White House Office of Policy Development and was associate deputy attorney general of the United States under President George H.W. Bush. Calling people zealots, crazy. Saddam Hussein broke because George Piro made friends with him. He said there should be no torture, it is against the law. They reviewed the law and decided it was legal, at worse malpractice, a civil matter. There was testimony before Congress and the FBI found no valuable information came from enhanced interrogation. He said Thom was misrepresenting truth. He said that he had not listened to the testimony. Thom recommended that he watch the testimony. He said Thom's guy is the liar. He said that Washington treated a spy differently - he hanged him.
  • Bumper Music: Shake It Up, The Cars.
  • Report: Broken Laws, Broken Lives, Physicians for Human Rights.
  • Bumper Music: Change, Bart Crow.
  • Bumper Music: Crazy, Gnarls Barkley.
  • Article: Cops: Man deposits $200 with pot, cocaine at bank.
  • Article: Has Daschle Gone Rogue? by Richard Wolffe.
    "Tom Daschle, Obama's original pick to overhaul the health care system, is now floating a rival plan, to the chagrin of some in the administration. The Daily Beast's Richard Wolffe asks the president's failed health nominee which side he's on."
  • Torture by cops in the US. The Hopi foundation. Lynndie England, etc. If waterboarding is not torture why did we prosecute people from the Philippines, etc.?
  • The Change We Knead Now - Bake Bread For World Peace.
  • Article: David Iglesias selected as Gitmo prosecutor.
  • Article: . Go to the Mirror Boy, The Who.
  • Bumper Music: "A Thing Called Love" by Jewel Aken.
  • Article: Playing dead? Baby opossum stuck in soda machine at NY gym doesn't give rescuers much help. AP.
  • Article: Madoff given 150-year sentence for a ‘staggering’ fraud crime.
    "Afterward, Ruth Madoff - often a target of victims' scorn since her husband's arrest - broke her silence by issuing a statement through her lawyer. She said she, too, had been misled.

    "I am embarrassed and ashamed," she said. "Like everyone else, I feel betrayed and confused. The man who committed this horrible fraud is not the man whom I have known for all these years."

  • Article: Court Rules for White and Hispanic Firefighters, Reversing Sotomayor Decision.
    "Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg read an impassioned dissent from the bench, in which she chastised the Court for a decision that she said will do "untold" damage to civil rights laws.

    "This case presents an unfortunate situation, one New Haven might well have avoided had it used a better selection process in the first place," she wrote. "But what this case does not present is race-based discrimination in violation of Title VII. Congress endeavored to promote equal opportunity in fact, and not simply in form. The damage today's decision does to that objective is untold."

  • Diane Feinstein says she will not let the left pressure her on health care.
  • Book: "Unmasked: The Final Years of Michael Jackson", Ian Halperin.
  • Article: Jacko needs lung swap by Richard White, 22 Dec 2008.
  • Article: Michael Jackson denies claims that he is suffering from potentially fatal illness, 23rd December 2008.
    "Michael Jackson has denied that he is seriously ill and needs a lung transplant, calling the claims a 'complete fabrication'.

    Yesterday the star's biographer said that he had been left half blind and barely able to speak by a debilitating genetic condition.

    Ian Halperin told the Sun newspaper: 'He needs a lung transplant, but may be too weak to go through with it.

  • Article: 'I'm better off dead. I'm done': Michael Jackson's fateful prediction just a week before his death By Ian Halperin, 29th June 2009.
    "I had more than a glimpse of the real Michael; as an award-winning freelance journalist and film-maker, I spent more than five years inside his ‘camp’.

    Many in his entourage spoke frankly to me – and that made it possible for me to write authoritatively last December that Michael had six months to live, a claim that, at the time, his official spokesman, Dr Tohme Tohme, called a ‘complete fabrication’. The singer, he told the world, was in ‘fine health’. Six months and one day later, Jackson was dead. ...

    In the course of my investigations, I spoke to two of his gay lovers, one a Hollywood waiter, the other an aspiring actor. The waiter had remained friends, perhaps more, with the singer until his death last week. He had served Jackson at a restaurant, Jackson made his interest plain and the two slept together the following night. According to the waiter, Jackson fell in love.

    The actor, who has been given solid but uninspiring film parts, saw Jackson in the middle of 2007. He told me they had spent nearly every night together during their affair – an easy claim to make, you might think. But this lover produced corroboration in the form of photographs of the two of them together, and a witness.

  • Michael Jackson was a brilliant artist but, tragically, was not allowed to be himself. Society needs to learn the lessons from his life and death. His biographer, Ian Halperin, predicted six months and a day before Jackson died that he would be dead within 6 months. He thought he had only signed up for ten London concerts, he had actually signed up for fifty.hair. Halperin believes that Jackson was not a pedophile but that he was gay. He had to disguise himself for liaisons with gay lovers, and was afraid to have contact with pretty much anybody because he lived in this huge bubble and he could never be sure if people liked him for himself or his money, and he could never come out. He couldn't be who he was, because we have no civil rights for gays.

    There is also the power of celebrity. It's a shame that a brilliant and talented person has died, but we've got this celebrity-driven culture and this false intimacy. And the problem for the person on the other side of that, the problem for the Michael Jacksons of the world is that on the one hand, they are the recipients of this incredible intensity from their fans, that feels like love, and yet it can't be reciprocated. It can't be normal.

    Jackson also spent much of his life trying to overcome racism. He was a major breakthrough; before him there were many, many venues, both physical venues and broadcast venues, that routinely didn't portray blacks. Clearly Jackson struggled with this through his surgeries and everything else.
    The two things that as a society we need to do to grow up, we need to start addressing as a society our celebrity culture, and homophobia. Whatever the medical reason for Jackson's death, in part Michael Jackson died as a result of celebrity culture and in part because of homophobia. They just would not let him be who he was. He was living out a dream, an extraordinary dream. He wanted to be famous, he wanted to be the king of pop and he was a genius, and yet he couldn't be himself.

  • Bumper Music: If today was your last day, Nickelback (video).
  • Did Jackson's father beat him because he acted gay? He never knew who was interested in him rather than his money. That's why they hang out with equally rich or famous people. The dead celebrity business will be reinventing him. Elvis, Marilyn Monroe and Steve McQueen made more dead than alive.
  • Article: Sweet-toothed bear breaks into home.
  • Bumper Music: Democracy is coming to the USA, Leonard Cohen.
  • Member of the day was Vincent Daniels who won a copy of "Cracking The Code: How to Win Hearts, Change Minds, & Restore America’s Original Vision" for blogging:

    I can definitely agree that anti-gay sentiment may be more prominent in the black community. As a black man, I can say that it is hard to have the deep friendships often thought about when you think of “best buddies”, because it’s often seen as being gay. So even your “best friends” only keep you at arms length.

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