Will Eric Holder hold these people accountable? Because at the very least, none of the people who took part in this coverup should still have jobs. Maybe they're infected with the same disease I've seen in cops through the years: "Hey, if this guy didn't do this particular crime, this is payback for all the times we didn't catch him."
To think that a man died to protect their reputation. Just unthinkable:
Justice Department officials have known for years that flawed forensic work might have led to the convictions of potentially innocent people, but prosecutors failed to notify defendants or their attorneys even in many cases they knew were troubled.
Officials started reviewing the cases in the 1990s after reports that sloppy work by examiners at the FBI lab was producing unreliable forensic evidence in court trials. Instead of releasing those findings, they made them available only to the prosecutors in the affected cases, according to documents and interviews with dozens of officials.
Not the defense attorneys, mind you. The prosecutors, who were then supposed to tell the defense. Right.
In addition, the Justice Department reviewed only a limited number of cases and focused on the work of one scientist at the FBI lab, despite warnings that problems were far more widespread and could affect potentially thousands of cases in federal, state and local courts.
As a result, hundreds of defendants nationwide remain in prison or on parole for crimes that might merit exoneration, a retrial or a retesting of evidence using DNA because FBI hair and fiber experts may have misidentified them as suspects.
In one Texas case, Benjamin Herbert Boyle was executed in 1997, more than a year after the Justice Department began its review. Boyle would not have been eligible for the death penalty without the FBI?s flawed work, according to a prosecutor?s memo.
[...] The Post found that while many prosecutors made swift and full disclosures, many others did so incompletely, years late or not at all. The effort was stymied at times by lack of cooperation from some prosecutors and declining interest and resources as time went on.
Overall, calls to defense lawyers indicate and records documented that prosecutors disclosed the reviews? results to defendants in fewer than half of the 250-plus questioned cases.
As a reporter, I covered this one ongoing case where the teenager convicted of killing a shop owner during a robbery was finally released after two convicts confessed to the crime. The prosecutor still insisted the kid did the crime - in collaboration with those who confessed. Prosecutors are so famously incapable of admitting they're wrong that I absolutely would never vote for any of them who run for higher office.
Senate Republicans last night successfully filibustered the Buffett Rule, a minimum tax on millionaires that the GOP has falsely claimed would actually hit small business owners and “job creators.” The Buffett Rule, the GOP says, is a gimmick that doesn’t raise enough revenue to merit consideration and is simply a weapon of class warfare, not a means to bring about more equity in America’s tax structure.
A new report from Innovation Ohio and the Center for American Progress, however, shows that the Buffett Rule is far from just a gimmick. According to the report, some of America’s wealthiest zip codes — ritzy communities like Fisher Island, Florida and Wyoming’s Teton Village — collectively pay lower effective tax rates than other lower-income communities, even though they are largely populated by millionaires. In seven of the wealthiest zip codes, the report found, 27 percent of residents earn 94 percent of the income — an average of $2.2 million annually — but their combined effective income and payroll tax rate is just 17.2 percent:
In zip codes with far lower incomes, however, the tax rates are higher. According to the report, 99 percent of all Ohio taxpayers live in zip codes with effective tax rates higher than 17.2 percent. The average Ohio taxpayer earned roughly $49,000 in 2008 but paid an effective tax rate of 21.5 percent, higher than the rate in any of the seven wealthy zip codes examined. Two-thirds of Ohio taxpayers live in zip codes where the average income is less than $50,000, but the tax rate is higher than 17.2 percent.
The data is similar in other states — 99 percent of Pennsylvania taxpayers, for instance, live in zip codes with effective tax rates above 17.2 percent.
The report adds to the evidence that the American tax code has grown incredibly benevolent to the richest Americans. Republicans, however, continue to urge lower- and middle-class Americans to “share some of the responsibility” of reducing the nation’s debt, all while pushing for even larger tax breaks for the wealthy.
There is a view of President Obama, held by both supporters and opponents, that there is a secret Barack Obama will emerge in a second term to be either much better or much worse than his first term. I can't find any basis for this belief. We've seen[...]
Read The Full Article:
How do violence-promoting fools like this find a way in front of a mic?[...]
Read The Full Article:
Is there nothing in this book but anti-sex rants?What the hell? Here's Catholic Bishop Daniel Jenky, delivering an actual sermon before a march by "Catholic men of faith" to demand women not be allowed to make their own damn decisions on contraception.
"The Church will survive the entrenched corruption and sheer incompetence of our Illinois state government, and even the calculated disdain of the President of the United States, his appointed bureaucrats in HHS, and of the current majority of the federal Senate. . . .OK, what the hell? Let me get this straight. Barack Obama is like Hitler, and Barack Obama is like Stalin, because you're being oppressed with some pissant rule about how no, if you're an employer you're not allowed to demand all your non-religious employees comport their healthcare choices with your personal religious bigotries? That's the big fight? Oh my goodness, Barack Obama is so pro-abortion! Oh, he's radical, he's an extreme secularist! Somewhere some woman is getting health insurance that covers birth control pills, and that's just like the Holocaust!.
Hitler and Stalin, at their better moments, would just barely tolerate some churches remaining open, but would not tolerate any competition with the state in education, social services, and health care.
In clear violation of our First Amendment rights, Barack Obama ? with his radical, pro abortion and extreme secularist agenda, now seems intent on following a similar path."
You know what? Screw you, guy. If having some insurance company somewhere pay for some protestant woman's birth control even though she works as a secretary in an office affiliated with a Catholic-run hospital or school is such an affront to you that it's on the order of Hitler, you can just sod off right-the-hell-now, thank you very much. That's nowhere near the realm of "I have to treat you seriously" discourse. That's just announcing to the world that you're a big, self-important, delusional jackass.
I would love to see my former church (and the word former sounds better and better each time I type it) be as impassioned about anything as they are about demanding the entire world comport to their sexual demands, but apparently that's just not going to happen. I don't know of anyone who's ever been denied communion because they were pro-death-penalty. Or anti-immigrant. Or because they supported monstrous wars for monstrous reasons. Or because they introduced a budget to screw the poor, or supported that budget. I never heard a single American bishop condemn the notion of letting the sick rot or the poor starve?because that's what Deficit Jesus would want, of course?as being something comparable to Hitler or Stalin. Oh, they'll write letters. Oh, they'll maybe mention how that's not really a good thing, tsk-tsk. But it's nothing compared to the all-out war they will wage to make sure women who are not even Catholic have to abide by their bullshitted notions of what a woman's "place" is, and how she should be having sex, and what the consequences of that sex ought to be.
He warned participants in the "A Call to Catholic Men of Faith" rally that Catholic schools, hospitals, and Newman Centers ?could easily be shut down? by the fall of 2013 rather than cooperate with the government's mandate that most health plans cover the cost of contraception, sterilization and some drugs that can induce abortion.In my lifetime there have been three fights, and only three fights, that the American Catholic Church have worked themselves into all-out public relations war for. The first was, of course, abortion. The second is protecting pedophilia in their ranks. The third is demanding other women not be provided birth control if they are employed by someone who doesn't want them to have it. That's it. The entire modern history of my church revolves around sex. Not social justice. Not caring for others. Just the sex. The church would rather close down adoption centers than have to treat the gays as potential parents. The church fears it will have to shut down its Catholic hospitals rather than bow to the demand that some protestant woman who works there be provided with fucking pills, or some atheist man have coverage that includes (shudder) sterilization. And it's all Obama-Hitler's fault for it happening.
"No Catholic institution, under any circumstance, can ever cooperate with the intrinsic evil of killling innocent human life in the womb," the bishop said.
Screw you, Mr. Bishop, your eminence, your holy protuberance, sir. If you would rather stop working for the sick or the poor than have some non-Catholic person's sex life covered by insurance, at no cost to you, with no involvement from you other than that you sign their damn paychecks as their employer, do it already. Go for it, nobody can or will stop you. If Jesus travelled in the company of prostitutes the least you can do is forgive some extracurricular fucking on the part of your janitors or nurses or secretaries, instead of threatening to withdraw all of your supposed good works in fear of being associated with it. I have no tolerance for this nonsense at this point, I think the church should in general be very, vary wary of getting into any conversation about Hitler and people like Hitler, and I have no notion as to why the bishops of the church believe they have the moral authority to lecture anyone on anything, at this point.
Rant over. Now go in peace, and maybe try doing some goddamn good deeds instead of just bullying the women of America into becoming second-class citizens subservient to the anti-sexual whims of a bunch of pompous old men in oversized hats.
Joyce L. Arnold, Liberally Independent, Queer Talk, equality activist, writer.
Battle for the Soul of Occupy
… First they silenced our uprising with a media blackout? then they smashed our encampments with midnight paramilitary raids? and now they?re threatening to neutralize our insurgency with an insidious campaign of donor money and co-optation. …
Will you allow Occupy to become a project of the old left, the same cabal of old world thinkers who have blunted the possibility of revolution for decades? Will you allow MoveOn, The Nation and Ben & Jerry to put the brakes on our Spring Offensive and turn our struggle into a ?99% Spring? reelection campaign for President Obama?
We are now in a battle for the soul of Occupy? a fight to the finish between the impotent old left and the new vibrant, horizontal left who launched Occupy Wall Street from the bottom-up and who dreams of real democracy and another world.
Whatever else you may think of Adbusters? take on what?s happening, they are, as usual, unambiguous in their perspective. One thing that stands out for me is the use of the term ?old left.? Maybe that?s because I remember when the Democratic Party discarded ?liberal? and made ?progressive? the term, or brand name, of preference. How much changed, other than the designation, is a matter of various opinions. How much is changing now is wrapped up in, among other things, the 2012 elections, and in Occupy and related movements.
Also from Adbusters:
Our Spring offensive is building toward a climactic May uprising ?
May 1 we leap into the new world with a mighty multinational General Strike. Wherever you are, No Work; No School; No Shopping. No illusions. No apologies. No business as usual. Into The Streets!
May 12, we intensify with three days of global action. Jammers in London, Lisbon, Paris, Marseilles, Helsinki, Cuzco, Barcelona, Quebec are already on board with more on the way. …
We scared the G8 away from Chicago and now some occupiers are planning #OCCUPYCAMPDAVID … .
Others are upping the ante with #OCCUPYCHICAGO ? a mobilization of anarchic swarms to shutdown the NATO summit.
And then one of the softer aesthetic moments of our Spring offensive could well be the #LAUGHRIOT on May 18, the day the G8 leaders meet in Camp David. There is something totally ludicrous, absurd, even insane about the eight most powerful people in the world deciding to do the people?s business … behind closed doors and razor wire fences.
This veneer of legitimacy is our tragedy turned to farce. …
Then we get ready for our next big challenge: How to Occupy the U.S. Presidential Election on November 6.
There?s always been some cooperation between Occupiers and members of the ?old Left,? though I?m doubtful the latter see themselves that way. Left, liberal, progressive … whatever the labels used by those identifying as Democratic, the ?horizontal left? Occupy actions that became public on September 17, 2011, have continued, and the ?Spring Resistance? is well underway. Some of what?s happening, and is being planned:
From OWS, a report about actually being on Wall Street:
For a full week, Wall Street … has been #Occupied. Thanks in part to a 2000 decision by a federal court in Manhattan, protesters are legally allowed to sleep on the sidewalk, as long as they don?t block building entrances or take up more than half of the sidewalk.
Regardless of the federal court ruling, however, yesterday NYPD Decides Occupy Wall Street?s Sidewalk Sleepovers Are Illegal. In the photo, barricades remain in case the scary sleepers return.
More about what?s happening, from the OWS article above,
… Occupiers in San Francisco took over a neglected property to create a vibrant community center for the 99%. Although thwarted by police, the #SFCommune has vowed to return this May Day … .
In Boston, Occupiers set up a camp on the steps of the State House to protest cuts to the public transit system. In Chicago … Occupiers joined with mental health advocates and community allies to occupy a clinic slated for closure by the city?s ruthless austerity measures … .
… in February, Occupy Atlanta occupied the headquarters of AT&T to stop mass lay-offs. …
Occupy Detroit has opened a new social center while also staging tent city protests against foreclosures and unemployment in low-income neighborhoods. …
See also NYers Blockade Home Foreclosure Auctions with Week of Sing-In Actions in Brooklyn, Queens & the Bronx; from Denver, Take Action Against Ordinance to Criminalize Homelessness; from Sarasota, On May 12, there will be a lawn chair sit in by Occupy Sarasota at 5 Points Park; from Greensboro, Occupy Greensboro joins Occupy Raleigh to reclaim an evicted family?s foreclosed home; in NYC, Occupy Wall Street … presents Run on Bank of America?; in DC, Occupy the Justice Department.
There?s more. For example, #Occupied:ReportsFromtheFrontLines, with actions at Santa Monica College, Midwest Occupy, Occupy Berkeley, Philly, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Vanderbilt, and Un. of NC, Chapel Hill.
And looking beyond the U.S., for examples, read Canadians protest proposed tuition hikes, strike paralyzes Quetta; Montreal Students Occupy Banks in 12-Hour Protest Marathon; Ireland: Occupy Dame Street Responds to Austerity & Bail-Outs With Bank Occupation; Germany: Blockupy Frankfurt; and Occupy Papua New Guinea Takes On Government, Wins.
So where does ?the Left,? in its Democratic Party version, see itself in the Occupy Spring Offensive actions?
After their exodus of corporate sweethearts, ALEC has decided maybe it wasn't a very good idea to reach beyond their mission. On Tuesday morning they announced they were disbanding their VoterID and Stand Your Ground task forces.
David Frizzell, Indiana State Representative and 2012 National Chairman of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), issued the following statement today on behalf of ALEC?s Legislative Board of Directors:
?Today we are redoubling our efforts on the economic front, a priority that has been the hallmark of our organization for decades. Fostering the exchange of pro-growth, solutions-oriented ideas is precisely why ALEC exists.
?To that end, our legislative board last week unanimously agreed to further our work on policies that will help spur innovation and competitiveness across the country.
?We are refocusing our commitment to free-market, limited government and pro-growth principles, and have made changes internally to reflect this renewed focus.
?We are eliminating the ALEC Public Safety and Elections task force that dealt with non-economic issues, and reinvesting these resources in the task forces that focus on the economy. The remaining budgetary and economic issues will be reassigned.
Yes, this is a victory for progressive voices, and yet, not a victory. After all, ALEC is only one tentacle of the right wing legislative network. They are the corporate arm, but let's not forget the State Policy Network, which works closely with ALEC to "educate" legislators.
Like ALEC, the SPN is a network of state-based policy think tanks that spew forth right wing studies and proposed legislation to further right wing goals. The full list of affiliated organizations is quite long, and includes organizations like the Goldwater Institute, the John William Pope Civitas Institute, and the Mackinac Institute for Public Policy.
So while I consider it a victory to have ALEC recognize the risk in overstepping their stated mission, I am by no means comforted by it, knowing that these other groups have equal clout in the lawmaking process.
I'm convinced this is only a tactical victory in a far bigger war. Right after they sent out their press release, the tweet below was blased from ALEC's Twitter account. I guess their plan is to distract and deflect with personal attacks.
— ALEC (@ALEC_states) April 17, 2012
I expect more like this.
Scott Ostrom served four years as a reconnaissance Marine, deploying for two tours in Iraq. Now 27 years old, he suffers from severe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Since being honorably discharged from the military he has struggled to maintain healthy relationships or keep a steady job. But the most difficult thing for him has been coping with his chilling memories of Iraq, and what they mean for him going forward:
The most important part of my life already happened. The most devastating... Nothing is ever going to compare to what I've done, so I'm struggling to be at peace with that.Craig Walker of the Denver Post is set to receive a Pulitzer Prize in Feature Photography for his photo essay, entitled "Welcome Home," which documents Scott Ostrom's life as a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The photos, and accompanying captions, provide a sobering reminder that the cost of war is measured in more than lives, dollars and poll numbers. I encourage readers to view the photo essay here.
As part of his attempt to appear more relateable, presumed GOP nominee Mitt Romney sat with a handful of regular, working Americans in Pennsylvania today to discuss their plight in the struggling economy. But the Romney campaign may not have vetted the attendees to make sure they were sufficiently anti-tax before giving them access to the candidate and his picnic table full of lemonade and pretzels.
One woman at the gathering said she was scared about the fate of her public schools, given deep cuts to the state budget (incidentally, the man who pushed those cuts, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett, endorsed Romney today). “I don’t like to see cuts made in anything in education,” she said, citing her daughter’s experience. Another man chimed in, noting that “the fat” had already been trimmed and now important education programs were being hit.
He went on to say, “None of us like to pay more taxes, but sometimes that’s necessary.” Another woman added, “It’s a necessary evil.” “Right, right,” a third person said as everyone in the group nodded. Watch it:
Indeed, while Republican lawmakers generally refuse to raise taxes and will look only at the spending side of the equation when making budgeting decisions, most reasonable Americans would probably realize that both revenues (taxes) and spending (government programs) need to be adjusted in order to balance budgets.
In a CNBC interview with Larry Kudlow to air later tonight, Mitt Romney defends his decision to release only two years of tax returns — both filed after he decided to run for President — by claiming that 2004 Democratic nominee John Kerry also released two years. From an advanced transcript:
KUDLOW: Why not release your tax returns? Why not go back 10 years?
Gov. ROMNEY: Well, we’ve had people run for president before, and they’ve released two years. John Kerry released two years of taxes.. I’ve released one already, put the estimate out for the next year. We’ll have two years of taxes..
In fact, John Kerry released not two years of returns, but 20. From an April 14, 2004 article by Byron York:
In addition to his 2003 returns, Kerry also released federal tax returns from the years 1999 to 2002 yesterday. There has been some dispute about returns for those years. Kerry has claimed that he had already released the returns ? in January of this year, he said, “I released all my tax returns for 20 years. I have never not released my tax returns throughout my political career.” But aside from releasing details from his 2002 taxes ? which showed a total income of $144,091 ? it is not clear that Kerry has ever made public his returns from 1999 or 2000 or 2001 before now.