Monday, February 27, 2006


Looks like DHS was the only member of the "group" which was opposed to the port deal with DP World.

From Capitol Hill Blue:

Within Bush Administration, only DHS opposed ports deal

The Homeland Security Department objected at first to a United Arab Emirates company's taking over significant operations at six U.S. ports. It was the lone protest among members of the government committee that eventually approved the deal without dissent.

The department's early objections were settled later in the government's review of the $6.8 billion deal after Dubai-owned DP World agreed to a series of security restrictions.

On Saturday, congressional leaders, the company and Bush administration officials reached for a compromise intended to derail plans by Republicans and Democrats for legislation next week that would force a new investigation of security issues relating to the deal. Talks were to continue through the weekend.

Yeh, they opposed the deal right up until they were told to toe the party....neocon....line.


US Senator Charles Schumer introduces bipartisan emergency legislation to suspend port deal.

In response to the planned shift of control of most of the Port of New York and New Jersey over to Dubai Ports World, a company owned and operated by the government of Dubai, U.S. Senator Charles Schumer introduced emergency legislation today to immediately suspend the deal. Schumer’s bill is supported by a strong bipartisan coalition of Senators including Senators Norm Coleman (R-MN), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Olympia Snowe (R-ME), Hillary Clinton (D-NY), Susan Collins (R-ME), Tom Coburn (R-OK), Jack Reed (D-RI), Rick Santorum (R-PA), Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) and others.

The bipartisan emergency bill will:
• Require the President to place a stay on DP World’s takeover of P&O ports.
• Require the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States commence an immediate 45-day investigation on the takeover’s effects on national security. The bill also requires CFIUS to coordinate with other agencies, such as the Coast Guard, and to take in to consideration past security assessments of ports operated by DP World.
• Require the Secretaries of Homeland Security and the Treasury to prepare a full report and brief members of Congress on their findings.
• Upon receiving the report, Congress would have the authority to disapprove the sale within thirty days.


Here's some recent news releases on the ports deal. Notice, they are both British media...not the MSM here.

From the BBC:

High Court bid to block P&O deal

Tankers about to dock at the port of Philadelphia
Dubai Ports will be taking control of six US ports
A US company will try to block the controversial £3.9bn ($6.8bn) takeover of shipping giant P&O by a Dubai firm in the High Court in London on Monday.

Miami-based Eller & Co has lodged a petition arguing the purchase by Dubai Ports World may harm its interests.

Dubai Ports World (DPW) has meanwhile agreed to a 45-day review of the security implications of the deal in an effort to assuage US concerns.

The company said it was surprised by the outcry over the bid.

The company had already agreed not to take over the management of the US ports until security issues had been fully addressed.

However, this has not deterred critics of the deal.

New Jersey officials are taking legal action to try and block the deal, while the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is seeking to annul P&O's 30-year operating licence, claiming it failed to seek permission for the transfer of ownership.

"There is a real prospect that the arrangement will lead to US port authorities revoking licences and leases held by joint venture companies which will cause sever financial losses," its petition states.

From Reuters:

Hurdles remain for ports deal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. lawmakers pressed ahead with legislation on Monday to possibly block a state-owned Arab company from taking over key U.S. port operations, despite the White House agreeing to a broader security review of the contested deal.

The review is a face-saving compromise that gives President George W. Bush, who has backed the takeover, more time to quell a bipartisan uproar. But at the end of the 45-day review period, Bush will be in the politically sensitive position of having to authorize or reject the deal.

Bush, who earlier said no additional review was necessary, backs the acquisition and threatened last week to use his veto power if members of Congress sought to derail it. Lawmakers have expressed concerns that the takeover could make the United States more vulnerable to attack because militant Islamists could penetrate the Middle Eastern company and learn of U.S. port security measures.

The ensuing furor has put Bush on the defensive over national security, an issue seen as his strongest political card as he tries to revive his sagging public approval ratings at the start of a crucial midterm election year.

Washington says the United Arab Emirates is a staunch ally in the global war on terrorism and has worked to close the loopholes that allowed al Qaeda operatives to use the Gulf Arab state as a financial and logistical hub before the September 11 attacks.

Several senators from both parties, including Democrat Charles Schumer of New York and Republican Susan Collins of Maine, said they planned to go ahead and introduce legislation to ensure a thorough security review of the ports contract.

There's more that goes with each story....just click the links above each.


IF ONLY.....

Sunday, February 26, 2006


Homeland Security making sure the job is done and we are safe and secure.


So there is no problem with DP World's security. Wrong again Dubya!

From the New York Times:

Gaps in Security Stretch From Model Port in Dubai to U.S.

Fences enclose the port's perimeter, which is patrolled by guards. Gamma-ray scanners peek inside containers to make sure they carry the clothing, aluminum, timber and other goods listed on shipping records. Radiation detectors search for any hidden nuclear material.

But those antiterrorism measures still fall far short of what is needed to ensure security, American government auditors and maritime experts say.

The scanning devices, for example, can check only a small fraction of the millions of containers that flow through here every year. The radiation detectors most likely would not pick up a key radioactive ingredient in a nuclear bomb, even if it was just modestly shielded. And the system that selects containers for inspection relies upon often-incomplete data.

In short, even at this model port, the security regimen set up in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks, largely at the request of the United States government, is far from enough to address the vulnerabilities that make ports still such an attractive terrorist target.

It explains why so many port experts consider as misplaced the furor that erupted this week over whether Dubai Ports World, the government-owned company that operates this port, should be allowed to take over management of terminals in six American cities.

Here's the link to the rest:

Gaps in Security Stretch From Model Port to U.S.


In my previous post, AL QAEDA ON THE INSIDE, I wrote of how al Qaeda had been able to infiltrate the government and state owned corporations in the UAE. Now DP world, the UAE owned corporation which has made a deal with the Bush administration to buy the rights to security and shipping at six international east coast ports, offered to submit to "a broader U.S. review of the security risks from its deal to take over major operations at six American ports."

From the Associated Press via Yahoo News:

Arab Company Accepts Broader Ports Review

By TED BRIDIS, Associated Press Writer

A United Arab Emirates-based company on Sunday offered to submit to a broader U.S. review of the security risks from its deal to take over major operations at six American ports.

Seeking to avert a showdown between President Bush and Congress, DP World also promised to create an American subsidiary that would function independently of executives in Dubai.

During the Bush administration's 45-day investigation, DP World said a London-based executive who is a British citizen would have authority over the company's operations at ports in New York, New Jersey, Baltimore, New Orleans, Miami and Philadelphia.

Also, an American citizen would serve as the chief security officer during this period, the company said.

"We hope that voluntarily agreeing to further scrutiny demonstrates our commitment to our long-standing relationship with the United States," said Edward H. Bilkey, the company's chief operating officer.

The rest of the article can be found below:

Arab Company Accepts Broader Ports Review

Now...this is going to be "the Bush administration's 45-day investigation" into any security risks with DP World. Let's get real! Just what kind of indepth investigation do they think that we think they are going to do. Besides...Bush, Cheney, and their neocon cohorts stand to make some big bucks off this deal. Why else would Bush back it when he admited that he knew nothing about it. Bush was probably thinking "Hmmm.....UAE + ports = $$$$ for me."

They don't care about national security when it comes to lining their pockets with cash.


Here's a little more to go along with this from the Chicago Tribune:

Turning a blind eye
Agency balked at ports deal
Debate rages over 'key partner'
The sheik behind the port deal


Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and all the rest of the neocon talking heads have told us, repeatedly, that we shouldn't be worried about our national security. They keep telling us that they wouldn't do anything to put our security at risk. Yeh...that must be why I keep seeing articles about how insecure our international ports are, and how Homeland Security has failed to do the job it was designed to do.

Now there is a new revelation about the UAE and al Qaeda. It seems that al Qaeda has infiltrated the government and many state owned corporations in the UAE.... along with Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Qatar, and Kuwait which our government has known about for some time.

This from New York Post via Buzz Flash:



WASHINGTON — Al Qaeda warned the government of the United Arab Emirates more than three years ago that it "infiltrated" key government agencies, according to a disturbing document released by the U.S. military.

The warning was contained in a June 2002 message to UAE rulers, in which the terror network demanded the release of an unknown number of "mujahedeen detainees," who it said had been arrested during a government crackdown in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks.

The explosive document is certain to become ammunition for critics of the controversial UAE port deal, who fear the Dubai-based firm could be used by terrorists to sneak money and personnel into the United States.

Little is known about the origins or authorship of the message.

"You are well aware that we have infiltrated your security, censorship and monetary agencies, along with other agencies that should not be mentioned," the message said.

"Therefore, we warn of the continuation of practicing . . . policies which do not serve your interest and will only cost you many problems that will place you in an embarrassing state before your citizens.

"Your homeland is exposed to us. There are many vital interests that will hurt you if we decided to harm them."

The document was among a batch of internal al Qaeda communications captured by U.S. forces in the war on terror.

They were declassified and released earlier this month by the Center for Combating Terrorism at West Point.

"If it's real, the document shows that the UAE really is trying to cooperate with the U.S. in the war on terrorism, because they were being threatened by al Qaeda," said terrorism expert Lorenzo Vidino.

"But it also reveals that even though they [the UAE] are our friends, al Qaeda seems to have people on the inside in the UAE, just as it has in Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Qatar and Kuwait."

You tell you really think they have any concern for our national security, or did these idiots just rush into this like they do with everything else?

Saturday, February 25, 2006


The "Drug War" has been going on in America for decades. What results has it produced?

Well...let's see. Prisons filled with small time users, crooked cops, innocent bystanders killed by drug lords in turf wars, and higher crime rates in other areas because manpower has to be used in the war on drugs.

Let those dopers be

A former police chief wants to end a losing war by legalizing pot, coke, meth and other drugs
By Norm Stamper, Norm Stamper is the former chief of the Seattle Police Department. He is the author of "Breaking Rank: A Top Cop's Exposé of the Dark Side of American Policing" (Nation Books, 2005).
October 16 2005

SOMETIMES PEOPLE in law enforcement will hear it whispered that I'm a former cop who favors decriminalization of marijuana laws, and they'll approach me the way they might a traitor or snitch. So let me set the record straight.

Yes, I was a cop for 34 years, the last six of which I spent as chief of Seattle's police department.

But no, I don't favor decriminalization. I favor legalization, and not just of pot but of all drugs, including heroin, cocaine, meth, psychotropics, mushrooms and LSD.

Decriminalization, as my colleagues in the drug reform movement hasten to inform me, takes the crime out of using drugs but continues to classify possession and use as a public offense, punishable by fines.

I've never understood why adults shouldn't enjoy the same right to use verboten drugs as they have to suck on a Marlboro or knock back a scotch and water.

It's not a stretch to conclude that our draconian approach to drug use is the most injurious domestic policy since slavery. Want to cut back on prison overcrowding and save a bundle on the construction of new facilities? Open the doors, let the nonviolent drug offenders go. The huge increases in federal and state prison populations during the 1980s and '90s (from 139 per 100,000 residents in 1980 to 482 per 100,000 in 2003) were mainly for drug convictions. In 1980, 580,900 Americans were arrested on drug charges. By 2003, that figure had ballooned to 1,678,200. We're making more arrests for drug offenses than for murder, manslaughter, forcible rape and aggravated assault combined. Feel safer?

How would "regulated legalization" work? It would: 1) Permit private companies to compete for licenses to cultivate, harvest, manufacture, package and peddle drugs.

2) Create a new federal regulatory agency (with no apologies to libertarians or paleo-conservatives).

3) Set and enforce standards of sanitation, potency and purity.

4) Ban advertising.

5) Impose (with congressional approval) taxes, fees and fines to be used for drug-abuse prevention and treatment and to cover the costs of administering the new regulatory agency.

6) Police the industry much as alcoholic beverage control agencies keep a watch on bars and liquor stores at the state level. Such reforms would in no way excuse drug users who commit crimes: driving while impaired, providing drugs to minors, stealing an iPod or a Lexus, assaulting one's spouse, abusing one's child. The message is simple. Get loaded, commit a crime, do the time.

Mr. Stamper has more that goes with what I've posted above.
The rest of his column can be found at the link below.

Let Those Dopers Be
by Norm Stamper
Los Angeles Times

Friday, February 24, 2006

THEY LIED AGAIN..... that's anything new.

That state owned company from the UAE is poised to take over control of 21 ports, not 6.

From UPI via Maru by way of Fixer at Alternate Brain:

The light of day

Bastards lied to us yet again....imagine that! Gee, just when the hell were they going to tell us about this one....after everything was all said done and signed?

When you're done with reading that, go read Dubai, Dubai, Doooooo that Lurch posted at Main and Central.


From Common Dreams via Buzz Flash:

It’s Munich In America. There Will Be No Normandy.; "This is it, folks. This is the scenario our Founders lost sleep over. This is the day they prepared us for." 2/23

"Outside the Philadelphia convention Benjamin Franklin was asked what sort of government he and his colleagues were crafting. His reply? “A republic. If you can keep it.” And that is just the question at issue today. Can we keep it?"

"America may not be a fascist country today, but it’s not for want of trying. I have no question but that through Dick Cheney’s dark heart courses the blood of Mussolini. No wonder the damn thing’s so diseased. And I have no doubt that Karl Rove has only admiration and envy for Joseph Goebbels. Hey, why can’t we do that here? (Hint: We are.)"

"America is not a fascist country (if it was, you wouldn’t be reading this), but pardon me if I don’t defer to Bush defenders and ringside Democrats who consider me hysterical for worrying about the direction in which we’re heading."

It's long, but I think it's important and needs to be read.


Hey, kids, ya gotta go read Farwood.

Gordon posted it over at Alternate Brain.

No liquids allowed durring reading.


From Tim Grieve at Salon:

The Dubai ports deal: Us, them and in between
The president seems surprised by the reaction. He shouldn't be.

The "people responsible" for port deal? Bush, Rumsfeld say: Not us!
The White House says that Bush didn't know about the plan until it was already approved -- despite a federal law that requires presidential approval.

Donald Rumsfeld's retraction
The defense secretary said the U.S. has stopped planting fake stories in the Iraqi press. It hasn't.

Another story about drinkin' and shootin'
"Zippo" becomes a "beer or two" that nobody drank becomes "a beer" that Cheney drank becomes a "glass of wine" that his hunting partner consumed.


An Executive Order by Bush in March 2003 gave more power to Cheney then any previous Vice President has had.

From Salon:

Cheney's coup
A 3-year-old executive order that vastly expanded his powers illuminates how the vice president and his minions led us into war.

"On March 25, 2003, President Bush signed Executive Order 13292, a hitherto little known document that grants the greatest expansion of the power of the vice president in American history. The order gives the vice president the same ability to classify intelligence as the president. By controlling classification, the vice president can in effect control intelligence and, through that, foreign policy."

"Bush operates on the radical notion of the "unitary executive," that the president has inherent and limitless powers in his role as commander in chief, above the system of checks and balances. By his extraordinary order, he elevated Cheney to his level, an acknowledgment that the vice president was already the de facto executive in national security. Never before has any president diminished and divided his power in this manner. Now the unitary executive inherently includes the unitary vice president."

Sooo....let's review here. Bush isn't the one leading the country, he's just a stooge for Cheney and PNAC....and Cheney's one of the creators, or creatures, of PNAC. Therefore, we really are being lead/controled by a group of far right-wingnut fascists.

I hope everyone feels alot safer now.


According to Bush....the "I didn't know" stooge....we're not supposed to worry about security. Sorry fool, I am concerned about port security, national security, any security for that matter as long as you, or any of your neocon cohorts are in office. My concern has greatly increased with the realization that you and your fascist friends want to open the front door and invite the terrorists in.

I found something very interesting via Tina, Fuzzy And Blue, at DelilahBoyd's Blog this morning. The following is from a Coast Guard veteran...and he should know.

The Dubai Ports World Deal - Through a Coast Guard Veteran's Eyes

The "Port Service Company" receives, manifests, loads, offloads, and transfers the containers. Normally, this is monitored for drugs -- but there are "holes." The "Port Service Company" has the "expertise" (in a "perverse kind of way") to know where the holes are.

Second, the "Port Service Company" frequently prepares the manifest. This is the legal document enumerating what the ship is carrying, shipper, recipient, port on loaded, port to be off loaded. This guides (or misguides) the inspection.

Third, frequently the "Port Service Company" performs "ship chandlering" - that's the sale of consumables and low level spare parts. This is not inventoried or manifested.

Fourth, merchant mariners' documents. It is fairly easy to enter a country on "Merchant Mariner's Documents" (functions like a mini-passport). No visa requirements if you stay within some distance of the port. This is popular with drug dealers - and could be a route for terrorists. In many countries a "Port Service Company" can issue "documents" (note - these are not Master, Mate, Pilot, Engineer, Radio Officer licenses or "Competency Documents") which are good enough to get you off of the ship while it's in port.

Let's see now....hmmmm....they can walk right thru the front door with an easy to aquire "pass" with explosives that are listed as something else, walk a few blocks and blow something up. With the size of the ports, and all the different things one can find in a port, that could be just about anything....including a school or day care center in the city.

Bush and the neocons are creating an "open door policy" with an al Qaeda supporter to let the terrorists in. Think about it folks. In order for PNAC and the neocons in control to stay in control, they are going to have to keep us afraid of an attack. And what better way to keep us afraid then to help them get in and start hitting our homeland....and when it happens the neocons will "spin" their way out of it.

Hat-tip to Tina for the heads-up, and a big THANK YOU to Delilah.

Thursday, February 23, 2006


Bush was at it again today trying to smooth the roiled waters that have arisen since the announcement of the sale of US ports to a company from the United Arab Emirates.

From Bush:

Bush, talking to reporters at the conclusion of a Cabinet meeting earlier Thursday, said that "people don't need to worry about security."

"The more people learn about the transaction that has been scrutinized and approved by my government," Bush said, "the more they'll be comforted that our ports will be secure."

Say what!? We're supposed to expect safety and security from a state owned company where the state was one of only three that recognized the Taliban as the official government of Afghanistan, and....really really big and here....have been/were/are still financial supporters of al Qaeda.

More from AP via Yahoo News:

Sen. Carl Levin also questioned the UAE's past record on terrorism matters, saying the country backed the Taliban and allowed financial support for al-Qaida. He said the UAE has an "uneven history" as "one of only a handful of countries in the world to recognize the Taliban regime in Afghanistan" He added that millions of dollars in al-Qaida funds went through UAE financial institutions.

Levin at one point noted that a special commission that investigated the terror attacks against the United States on Sept. 11, 2001 concluded that "there's a persistent counterterrorism problem represented by the United Arab Emirates."

"Just raise your hand if anybody (at the witness table) talked to the 9-11 commission," commanded Levin. There was no response among the handful of administration representatives.

You can read the rest of the article here:

Senator Challenges Ports Deal Procedure

Wednesday, February 22, 2006


I want to take a spot up here to shout out a big Happy Birthday to my son Thomas.


The boy's the big 3-0 today...not much of a boy any more though....grown into a fine young man. Yeh, he's still young.
Born February 22, 1976. Washington's Birthday....named him Thomas Jefferson, for my favorite Founding Father.


So now the White House is saying that Bush really didn't know about the sale of six International Ports on the east coast.

Washington: President bush was unaware of the pending sale of shipping operations at six major U.S. seaports to a state-owned business in the United Arab Emirates until the deal already had been approved by his administration, the White House said Wednesday.

Defending the deal anew, the administration also said that it should have briefed Congress sooner about the transaction, which has triggered a major political backlash among both Republicans and Democrats.

Rest of the story is here:

Bush Unaware of Ports Deal Before Approval

What I want know is if Bush didn't know about the sale, or who the buyer was, just who the hell set this up without telling their fearless leader, besides informing Congress.

This concerns our national security, and Chertof is one of those who signed off.

The 12 people who signed off on this deal:

Treasury Secretary John Snow (Chairman)
Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice
Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff
Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez
Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez
D.O.M.B. Director Joshua Bolten
U.S. Trade Representative (to the WTO) Robert Portman
Chairman of Council of Economic Advisors Edward P. Lazear
Director, Office of Science & Technology PolicyJohn H. Marburger, III
Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs Stephen Hadley
Assistant to the President for Economic Policy Allan Hubbard

What the fuck! Did Cheney do this.


Here's a little more from Think Progress via Buzz Flash:

Administration Failed To Conduct Legally Required Investigation Before Approving UAE Port Deal 2/22

Tuesday, February 21, 2006


Sooo...Monday nite Bush didn't know anything about the deal with the six International Ports on the east coast.

From Tina at Fuzzy And Blue:

Bush Claims:UAE Port Deal- I knew zero

On Lou Dobbs Monday night, I was told that Bush said that when it came to the United Arab Emerites winning control over 6 major US ports, surprise! surprise!... Bush supposedly knew nothing about it. While I believe he would need the the Jaws of Life to remove his head from his ass, it is hard to buy that Bush statement given that 12 top level officials signed off on this deal, including: Treasury Sec Snow, Sec of Defense Rumsfeld, Sec of State Rice, Sec of Homeland Security Chertoff, Att Gen Gonzalez, & Assis to the Pres for Natl Security Affairs Hadley. Wanna try another lie Dubya?

...and today he warns Congress that if they pass a bill to block this deal, he will veto it.

From Yahoo! News

Bush: Arab Co. Port Deal Should Proceed

Sounds like the perfect way for PNAC and the neocons to get another Pearl Harbor-9/11 effect.

Thanks Tina.


Looks like Bush and this Arab Co. are pretty friendly.

Gordon at Alternate Brain has this up. Go read.

Dubai company set to run US ports has ties to administration

Update No. 2

Our troops are gonna get screwed.

From Shea at Constantly Amazed:

Thanks Shea.

Sunday, February 19, 2006


Now I know Bush has used 9/11 so many times as a battle cry that alot of people have numbed themselves to it. We have been lied to repeatedly about what happened that day.

...but sometimes the truth comes out.

Loose Change: The Movie 2nd Edition

It's about an hour and 20min long.
I highly recomend watching this.

Hat-tip to Dez for the heads-up.
(Mary's daughter)

ON THIS DATE IN HISTORY...., 9:05am, Grandpa Eddie was born.

Yeh, that's right, born...not hatched, not found under a rock, born.

After an 18hr battle with my mother....and alot of gruntin' and pushin' from mom, and I mean alot...8lb 10oz worth...I finally capitulated and left the warmth of mom's womb. Upon exiting said womb, I filled the delivery room "with what seemed to be the screams of a banshee"(Mom's words). Little did mom know that that would not be the only time she would hear me release noise from the depths of my lungs...which she heard quite often over the next 19yrs, or longer.

Ya know how that "golden birthday" thing works...turn the age equal to the day of birth...well, wouldn't that work for the year of birth, also? Having been born in 1953 and turning 53...yeh, yeh, yeh, go ahead and laugh, just don't choke on anything...shouldn't that mean something? Hell, mom thought I was doin' good to make it to 21 in one piece! Oh, well, it was just a thought.

Anyway, I'm not sure what's on the agenda for today....kinda hard to ask anybody right now, I'm the only one up at the time I'm posting this. I may just screw-off all football, too early for baseball, not a big Nascar fan, maybe college hoops if there's any games on...but be assured, I'll find something to screw-off at. I may not be postin' much today...takes to long to type once ya start gettin' buzzed. That reminds me, I better check the barley-pop supply.

To anyone else out there havin' a birthday...Happy Birthday and Party ON!