Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Barack's Chicago roots

"New mystery: Feds planned to link Obama-Rezko but backed off" (Andrew Macolm, Los Angeles Times):
According to
published reports in the Chicago Sun-Times, recently unsealed documents show prosecutors intended to call several witnesses who would tie Rezko to Obama. The federal judge ruled that they could.
"Witnesses will testify that Rezko was a long-standing supporter and fund-raiser of Barack Obama," one prosecutor wrote in their planning notes. But for unexplained reasons, they ended up not calling those witnesses.

Oh. Yeah. Antoin "Big Tony" Rezko. The gift that you can't give back. Over $250,000 dollars were steered to Barack Obama's campaigns by Tony Rezko.

Rezko is the slumlord whose slums were in Barack's district. That didn't prevent Barack from steering public money to Rezko. Nor did it make Barack give a damn when consituents living in those slums complained about the conditions, the lack of heat, etc.

"Rezko prosecutors considered focus on Obama" (Mike Robinson, AP):
Rezko, 52, was accused of stacking two key state boards with obedient followers by wielding political clout and using his power to squeeze a contractor and a group of money management firms wanting to do business with the state for payoffs. He is was convicted earlier this month and now awaits his sentence.
It was no secret that Rezko was a long-standing contributor to Obama's campaigns -- although not to the Democrat's current race for president. Obama's campaign fund has returned some $250,000 in Rezko-related donations and Obama has been accused of no wrongdoing.
Federal prosecutors may not have wanted to muddy the presidential campaign by bringing Obama into the testimony when there was no evidence of wrongdoing by him. The newly released documents suggest federal prosecutors steered clear of an intense focus on Obama and that they could have done somewhat more.

Rezko is a slumlord. Hillary was not stretching the truth when she made that observation. If you remember, Barack tried to lie and say he'd done maybe five hours of work for Rezko and that was the extent of their relationships. That was a lie.

"Connect the Dots: Tony Rezko, Allison Davis, Barack Obama" (Pat Hickey, Chicago Daily Observer):
A three year old boy was crushed to death by a rusty wrought iron gate on Friday last week. Accidents happen - Chicago's newspapers will tell you. If a Chicago Police Officer had been within fifty miles of the falling fence, The Sun-Times Frank Main would have linked Curtis Cooper's Death to 'Systemic Racism and Institutionalized Brutality.'Chicago's Media Incumbents do not see any connections between Curtis Cooper's crushed little body and the tons of Progressive Chicago Clout that helped unhinge the truth. There is nothing more heart-breaking than the death of a child due to an accident. A three year old, like Curtis Cooper, and his pals probably weigh between thirty five and fifty pounds each -tops but we are told their hi-jinks and collective weight ripped a solid wrought iron fence from its hinges. Here's this morning's account from the
Chicago Tribune on the death of three year old Curtis Cooper:
"Urban Property Advisors, the management company hired by the Chicago Housing Authority, characterized the death as a tragic accident and said there would be an investigation. "It is an accident like anything that happens in this world," said Dalphine Jasper, a regional property manager for the company, which has managed the facility. Property manager Ronald O'Neal said there are weekly inspections as the complex undergoes renovations. "There was nothing wrong with [the gate] other than the fact that it was our belief that children were playing on it before it fell," O'Neal said.

The Sun-Times digs a bit deeper:
"As the 22-year-old mother watched from a window, a gate weighing hundreds of pounds broke from its hinge, fell atop the boy and killed him, Cooper's family said. The property, currently under renovation, is managed by the clout-heavy Urban Property Advisors (UPA). The gate was one of many placed on both sides of communal backyard areas shared by the row homes. On Friday, some were chained to their sideposts because the hinges were broken. A witness said the one that fell was not chained, but that the bottom hinge was not connected."The gate's been like that," Curtis' aunt, Lisa Springfield, said. "You can see the parts rusted." On Friday, a UPA regional manager said all of the gates that were not sturdy would be removed. And Saturday, authorities were out taking some down."

It all goes back to the company Barack's kept.

"Grim proving ground for Obama's housing policy" (Binyamin Appelbaum, Boston Globe):
Grove Parc has become a symbol for some in Chicago of the broader failures of giving public subsidies to private companies to build and manage affordable housing - an approach strongly backed by Obama as the best replacement for public housing.
As a state senator, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee coauthored an Illinois law creating a new pool of tax credits for developers. As a US senator, he pressed for increased federal subsidies. And as a presidential candidate, he has campaigned on a promise to create an Affordable Housing Trust Fund that could give developers an estimated $500 million a year.
But a Globe review found that thousands of apartments across Chicago that had been built with local, state, and federal subsidies - including several hundred in Obama's former district - deteriorated so completely that they were no longer habitable.
Grove Parc and several other prominent failures were developed and managed by Obama's close friends and political supporters. Those people profited from the subsidies even as many of Obama's constituents suffered. Tenants lost their homes; surrounding neighborhoods were blighted.
Some of the residents of Grove Parc say they are angry that Obama did not notice their plight. The development straddles the boundary of Obama's state Senate district. Many of the tenants have been his constituents for more than a decade.
"No one should have to live like this, and no one did anything about it," said Cynthia Ashley, who has lived at Grove Parc since 1994.

No one did anything about it? But Barack's got a record we're all supposed to be thrilled with. I haven't seen that record, have you?

I've seen a lot of liars in Panhandle Media make excuses for the corrupt Barack. I haven't seen any record. By the way, where are his records from when he was in the Illinois legislature? He kept promising them. Where are they? The excuse was that he didn't have the money in the legislature and he didn't have enough assistants but he was working on it now. He's raked in more dough than any Democrat ever running for office in the US. Where are the records?

"Iraq snapshot" (The Common Ills):
Tuesday, July 1, 2008. Chaos and violence continue, war resisters have greater support in Canada than some may have thought as a new poll indicates, tag sale on Iraqi oil continues, the Nader-Gonzalez campaign raises over $10,000 yesterday, and more.

Starting with war resistance. As Canada gears up for actions to demonstrate support for US war resisters, a new poll is released.
The Angus Reid Poll finds: "A majority of Canadians would agree with the decision to let American military deserters stay in Canada as permanent residents, a new Angus Reid Strategies survey reveals. . . In the online survey of a representative national sample, three-in-five Canadians (64%) say they would agree to give these U.S. soldiers the opportunity to remain in Canada as permanent residents. Quebec (70%) houses the highest proportion of respondents who agree with the motion, while Alberta (52%) has the fewest supporters. A gender breakdown reveals that while both males and females would agree to let U.S. military deserters remain in Canada, females are much more sympathetic (69% versus 57%)." The findings come as Canada is on the verge of deporting the first US Iraq War resister. May 21st was when Corey Glass was told he would be deported. Corey Glass is an Iraq War veteran and a US war resister. He went to Canada seeking asylum -- the kind of welcoming Canada provided to war resisters ("draft dodgers" and "deserters") during Vietnam. After being told he was being deported, he's been 'extended' through July 10th. June 3rd Canada's House of Commons voted (non-binding motion) in favor of Canada being a safe harbor for war resisters. Douglas Glynn (The Barrie Examiner) quotes Corey stating, "The motion is not legally binding, though the majority of Parliament voted for it. I realized innocent people were being killed. I tried to quit the military while in Iraq," he said, "but my commander told me I was just stressed out and needed some R and R (rest and relaxation), because I was doing a job I was not trained to do. I went home on leave and said I was not coming back." So that's where it stands currently.

Canada's War Resister Support Campaign is calling for a "
NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION, Wednesday July 2nd:"

DetailsU.S. Iraq War resister Corey Glass is still facing deportation on July 10th, despite the Parliament of Canada having voted in favour of a motion to let Corey and other U.S. war resisters stay.
The federal government and the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration must respect the will of Parliament and implement the motion which calls on the government to "immediately implement a program to allow conscientious objectors and their immediate family members […] to apply for permanent resident status and remain in Canada; and … the government should immediately cease any removal or deportation actions … against such individuals."
On July 2nd, the War Resisters Support Campaign is calling on all supporters to call Minister Diane Finley and ask her to: • STOP deportation proceedings against Corey Glass and all U.S. Iraq war resisters; and • IMPLEMENT the motion adopted by Canada's Parliament to allow U.S. Iraq war resisters to apply for permanent resident status.
Here are the numbers to call: Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Diane Finley 613.996.4974
MP Diane Finley's constituency office (Simcoe): 519.426.3400
Or email her at:
minister@cic.gc.ca or finled1@parl.gc.ca

In the US, Courage to Resist is planning "
July 9th actions at Canadian Consulates nationwide:"Join a vigil and delegation to a Canadian consulate near you on Wednesday, July 9th to support war resisters! On the eve of Corey Glass' possible deportation, we will demand, "Dear Canada: Abide by the June 3rd resolution - Let U.S. war resisters stay!" More details and cities to be confirmed soon!
Washington DC - Time TBA - 501 Pennsylvania Ave NW (
map). Sponsored by Veterans for Peace. Info: TBA San Francisco - Noon to 1pm - 580 California St (map). Sponsored by Courage to Resist. Info: 510-488-3559; courage(at)riseup.net Seattle - Time TBA - 1501 4th Ave (map). Sponsored by Project Safe Haven. Info: 206-499-1220; projectsafehaven(at)hotmail.com Dallas - Time TBA - 750 North St Paul St (map). Sponsored by North Texas for Justice and Peace. Info: 214-718-6362; hftomlinson(at)riseup.net New York City - Noon to 1pm - 1251 Avenue of the Americas (map). Sponsored by War Resisters' League. Info: 212-228-0450; wrl(at)warresisters.org Philadelphia - Time TBA - 1650 Market St (map). Sponsored by Payday Network. Info: 215-848-1120; payday(at)paydaynet.org Minneapolis - Time TBA - 701 Fourth Ave S (map). Info: TBA Los Angeles - Noon to 1pm - 550 South Hope St (map). Sponsored by Progressive Democrats LA. Info: pdlavote(at)aol.com Help organize a vigil at one of these other Canadian Consulates: Atlanta, Boston, Buffalo, Chicago, Denver, Detroit, Miami, Anchorage, Houston, Raleigh, Phoenix, or San Diego. Please contact Courage to Resist at 510-488-3559. Veterans for Peace issued a joint call with Courage to Resist and Project Safe Haven for July 9th vigils at Canadian Consulates: "Dear Canada: Do Not Deport U.S. War Resisters!" Contact us if you can help organize a vigil, or can otherwise get involved. Locations of the 22 Canadian Consulates in the United States.Recently on June 3rd the Canadian Parliament passed an historic motion to officially welcome war resisters! It now appears, however, that the Conservative government may disregard the motion. Iraq combat veteran turned courageous war resister, 25-year-old Sgt. Corey Glass of the Indiana National Guard is still scheduled to be deported July 10th.We will ask that the Canadian government respect the democratic decision of Parliament, the demonstrated opinion of the Canadian citizenry, the view of the United Nations, and millions of Americans by immediately implementing the motion and cease deportation proceedings against Corey Glass and other current and future war resisters. Join Courage to Resist, Veterans for Peace, and Project Safe Haven at Canadian Consulates across the United States (Washington DC, San Francisco, New York City, Seattle, Minneapolis, and Los Angeles confirmed--more to be announced).We mailed and delivered over 10,000 of the original letters to Canadian officials. Please sign the new letter, "Dear Canada: Abide by resolution - Let U.S. war resisters stay!" http://www.couragetoresist.org/canada
War Resisters Support Campaign will hold a "Rally to Stop the Deportation of Parkdale Resident Corey Glass" July 3rd, begins at 7:00 p.m. (with doors opening at six p.m.) at the May Robinson Building, 20 West Lodge, Toronto: "In 2002, Corey joined the Indiana National Guard. He was told he would not have to fight on foreign shores. But in 2005 he was sent to Iraq. What he saw there caused him to become a conscientious objector and he came to Canada. On May 21, 2008, he got his final order to leave Canada by July 10, 2008. Then on June 3 Parliament passed a motion for all the war resisters to stay in Canada. However the Harper government says it will ignore this motion." They are also asking for a July 2nd call-in. Diane Finley is the Immigration and Citizenship Minister and her phone numbers are (613) 996-4974 and (519) 426-3400 -- they also provide her e-mail addresses minister@cic.gc.ca ("minister" at "cic.gc.ca") and finled1@parl.gc.ca ("finled1" at "parl.gc.ca").

To pressure the Stephen Harper government to honor the House of Commons vote,
Gerry Condon, War Resisters Support Campaign and Courage to Resist all encourage contacting the Diane Finley (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration -- 613.996.4974, phone; 613.996.9749, fax; e-mail http://thecommonills.blogspot.com/mc/compose?to=finley.d@parl.gc.ca -- that's "finley.d" at "parl.gc.ca") and Stephen Harper (Prime Minister, 613.992.4211, phone; 613.941.6900, fax; e-mail http://thecommonills.blogspot.com/mc/compose?to=pm@pm.gc.ca -- that's "pm" at "pm.gc.ca"). Courage to Resist collected more than 10,000 letters to send before the vote. Now they've started a new letter you can use online here. The War Resisters Support Campaign's petition can be found here.

There is a growing movement of resistance within the US military which includes Megan Bean, Chris Bean, Matthis Chiroux, Richard Droste, Michael Barnes, Matt Mishler, Josh Randall, Robby Keller, Justiniano Rodrigues, Chuck Wiley, James Stepp, Rodney Watson, Michael Espinal, Matthew Lowell, Derek Hess, Diedra Cobb,
Brad McCall, Justin Cliburn, Timothy Richard, Robert Weiss, Phil McDowell, Steve Yoczik, Ross Spears, Peter Brown, Bethany "Skylar" James, Zamesha Dominique, Chrisopther Scott Magaoay, Jared Hood, James Burmeister, Jose Vasquez, Eli Israel, Joshua Key, Ehren Watada, Terri Johnson, Clara Gomez, Luke Kamunen, Leif Kamunen, Leo Kamunen, Camilo Mejia, Kimberly Rivera, Dean Walcott, Linjamin Mull, Agustin Aguayo, Justin Colby, Marc Train, Abdullah Webster, Robert Zabala, Darrell Anderson, Kyle Snyder, Corey Glass, Jeremy Hinzman, Kevin Lee, Mark Wilkerson, Patrick Hart, Ricky Clousing, Ivan Brobeck, Aidan Delgado, Pablo Paredes, Carl Webb, Stephen Funk, Blake LeMoine, Clifton Hicks, David Sanders, Dan Felushko, Brandon Hughey, Logan Laituri, Jason Marek, Clifford Cornell, Joshua Despain, Joshua Casteel, Katherine Jashinski, Dale Bartell, Chris Teske, Matt Lowell, Jimmy Massey, Chris Capps, Tim Richard, Hart Viges, Michael Blake, Christopher Mogwai, Christian Kjar, Kyle Huwer, Wilfredo Torres, Michael Sudbury, Ghanim Khalil, Vincent La Volpa, DeShawn Reed and Kevin Benderman. In total, at least fifty US war resisters in Canada have applied for asylum.
Information on war resistance within the military can be found at
The Objector, The G.I. Rights Hotline [(877) 447-4487], Iraq Veterans Against the War and the War Resisters Support Campaign. Courage to Resist offers information on all public war resisters. In addition, VETWOW is an organization that assists those suffering from MST (Military Sexual Trauma).

Turning to Iraq, where
UPI notes the (five) attempted assassinations of (five) judges yesterday. You might think it was a big story. Not to the New York Times where Sabrina Tavernise and Andrew E. Kramer offer up seven sentences on the assassination attempts -- seven sentences that begin in paragraph 20 of a 25 paragraph story. The two conclude, "The attacks seemed to be calculated to intimidate rather than to kill. It was not clear who was responsible." More attention, to be fair, than PBS' The NewsHour gave it last night with Ray Suarez offering, "In Iraq today, bombings in Baghdad targeted five judges; all escaped unharmed." And for public television's NewsHour, that was that. The Gulf Daily News leads with the assassination attempts, "Only one of the jurists was injured in the attacks, which happened four days after senior judge Kamil Al Showaili of the country's Higher Judicial Council was assassinated while driving home in mostly Shi'ite east Baghdad. Police said it was unclear whether Al Showaili's slaying was related to the latest attacks." Of al-Showali, RTT notes he was "[t]he President of the same court" and "one of Iraq's most important judges, charged with handling criminal cases for eastern Baghdad." Jordan's Al Bawaba explains of the attacks "police believe may be part of a Shiite campaign to force them to free jailed militants or reduce their sentences."

On the diplomatic front,
Jordan Times reports that Nayef Zeidan was sworn in yesterday as Jordan's ambassador to Iraq. Previously, Zeidan was Jordan's ambassador in the United Arab Emirates. Jordan's embassy in the Netherlands notes, "The Jordian embassy in Baghdad has been run by a charge d'affaires for three years and the Kingdom has not sent an ambassador, citing 'security concerns'." This follows King Abdullah II's public statements in May -- as the US White House pressured Arab countries -- that Jordan would
wound send an official emissary to Iraq. The
Jordan Times points out, "Several Arab countries have linked sending back their ambassadors to the restoration of security in Iraq. So far, Bahrain and the UAE have decided to send back ambassadors to Baghdad after the security situation improved following two 'successful' military campaigns against Al Sadr militia and Al Qaeda." King Abdulla II, speaking with Lally Weymouth (Washington Post) last week, offered, "I am actually optimistic for the first time on Iraq. I think that Iraqi society is moving in the right direction. It's the first time that I have felt that Iraqis have, as much as they can, bound themselves together into a unity." From Jordan to another country that shares a border with Iraq, Turkey. The Turkish Daily News reports, "Turkey has proposed establishing a joint industrial zone with Iraq in the border town of Ovakoy, a province in the country's southeastern Anatolian region, State Minister Kursat Tuzmen told reporters yesterday." Today's Zaman quotes Tuzmen declaring, "We may establish a joint industrial zone at Ovakoy, on the Turkish-Iraqi border. Both Turkey and Iraq could freely conduct industrial and commercial activities there. We may concentrate on energy production and sales at the planned industrial zone at first, and later extend its scope to other fields." The comments are similar to ones Tuzmen made Sunday while attending a business forum in Baghdad's Green Zone. Last week, Tuzmen was also stating Turkey would be increasing trade with Catalonia. Meanwhile Laith Hammoudi (McClatchy Newspapers) reports that alcohol is being sold in Iraq ("retail only") and speak with Yazidi Dawood and Christian Saif (who didn't want their full names noted for publication) about their experiences selling alcohol (previously Saif had a store fire bombed and nine of the thirteen stores his family owned were taken over by "Islamist insurgents".).

As noted yesterday, the TSC (technical service contracts) -- which were no-bid contracts -- are on hold.
Sudarsan Raghavan and Steven Mufson (Washington Post) report Iraq's plan, announced by the country's Minister of Oil Hussain al-Shahristani, to up "production by about 60 percent, or approximately 1.5 million barrels a day" via opening eight fields (six oil, two natural gas) up to foreign partners and the bidders are "35 companies -- including firms from the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China and India". The New Zeland Herald estimates this move "could lead to the biggest foreign stake in Iraq since the industry was nationalised more than 30 years ago" while also noting "concerns that a dominat role for Western firms could feed perceptions that US-led forces toppled Saddam Hussein to grab the country's natural resources." Doug Smith and Said Rifai (Los Angeles Times) explain, "The bidding will proceed even though parliament has not yet ratified a national oil law to regulate foreign contracts" and note that the announcement took place during a "testy news conference" when the Ministor of Oil "renewed his criticism of the Kurdish regional government for signing deals with foreign companies that offer them a share of oil they extract." Gina Chon and Russell Gold (Wall St. Journal) add that Shahrastani called the "20 separate oild eals, with companies including Hunt Oil," to be "a clear violation of the rules." Sam Dagher (Christian Science Monitor) observes, "Major oil firms have been positioning themselves for years to gain access to Iraq's vast oil reserves, which are estimated at 115 billion barrels -- the world's second largest after Saudi Arabia." Janet McBride (Reuters) wonders, "Are U.S. and British firms obvious choices as partners because of their expertise? After all before the U.S.-led invasion Iraq often preferrred Russian firms. Or are U.S. and British firms repeating the benefit of their government's policies?"

Turning to some of today's violence . . .


Mohammed Al Dulaimy (McClatchy Newspapers) reports a Baghdad car bombing that left five people wounded, a Diyala Province roadside bombing that wounded "one policeman, three children and four men" and aother Diyala Province roadside bombing that claimed the lives of 3 brothers and left their father wounded a Nineveh Province truck bombing that claimed the life of 1 person (plus the bomber) and left twenty-five people wounded and, dropping back to Monday, a Diyala Province car bombing that claimed 4 lives and left nine people wounded." Reuters notes a Mosul roadside bombing that claimed the life of 1 police officer and a Sulaiman Pek bombing apparently attempting to assassinate "the mayor of the town of Sulaiman Pek" that resulted in the death of 1 bodyguard.


Reuters notes Iraqi soldiers shot dead 2 people in Baghdad.


Mohammed Al Dulaimy (McClatchy Newspapers) reports 3 corpses discovered in Baghdad today.

Hugh Eakin (New York Times) reports one of the more alarming incidents of violence Iraqi documents from Saddam Hussein's rule that are considered historic, important for humanitarian and historical purposes and document human rights abuses are not in Iraq. They are now in the United States and under the control of the right-wing Hoover Institution. An Iraqi exile (Kanan Makiya) 'claimed' themwhen he returned to Iraq after the start of the illegal war. He set up the Iraq Memory Foundation. The files, which were never Kanan Makiya's to claim, were being held in the Green Zone until Makiya decided to take them out in 2006. Whether he had permission is unclear but what is clear is that the Iraqi government wants those documents back and most outside 'experts' believe the papers should be housed in the Iraq National Library and Archive.

James Glanz (New York Times) reports that at least 13 Americans have died in Iraq from electrocution caused by the shoddy work done by KBR which knew of the problems but did not fix them. Meanwhile, Adam Kokesh (Revolutionay Patriot) posts an e-mail from a service member stationed at Camp Falluja in Iraq revealing that "our sister units berthing area caught fire and burned to the ground. It spread so fast and with 120 temps here today, there was no way they could contain the fire in time. These Marines lost everything that they had, all of their military issued gear as well as personal gear."; while another explains that the loss is made harder due to the fact that the PX is a problem and includes this quote, "Yeah it is very hard to get stuff here, the shipments have really slowed down. We pretty much resort to people back in the states sending us shaving cream and s**t like that, or wait until someone goes to BIAP and they bring it back in bulk. You can't even buy skivee shirts and what not. It blows."

Turning to the US race for president.
Alexander Mooney (CNN) reports on the latest CNN-Opinion Research Corporation poll which finds Ralph Nader with 6% of the vote, Bob Barr with 3% (Adam Kokesh is supporting Bob Barr), John McCain with 43% and Barack Obama with 46% -- the poll does not include Cynthia McKinney, the Green Party's presumed nominee. PBS' NewsHour has today added profiles of presidential candidates Ralph Nader and Bob Barr.

"We do need a more fundamental strategy here on giant corporate power,"
Ralph Nader declared in October of last year at the DC Green Festival. That is the central political issue of our time. It's corporate power and the takeover of our government and the spread of commercial values into every nook and cranny of our culture including the commercialization of childhood, the commercialization of universities, the commercialization of almost everything these large companies touch. . . . The other day there was a report saying that TORT lawyers were having trouble suing nursing home chains for severe mistreatment of elderly people and neglect. And the reason why is because these nursing home chains are owned by tiers of corporations -- some of them offshore. And the most immediate tier have very few assets so they can't be responsible for paying the verdicts. And so the TORT lawyers say, 'Well we just can't handle it.' And so more and more people can be mistreated or neglected in these nursing homes with impunity."

Ralph Nader's running mate is Matt Gonzalez and the
Nader-Gonzalez ticket is on the ballot in Illinois and The Hartford Courant notes: "Campaign volunteer Peter Ellmer was able to solicit several pledges on Sunday from people who are willing to collect signatures to get Nader on the Connecticut ballot." Nader is working to be on the ballot and Team Nader notes that Monday saw $12,761.69 donated to the Nader-Gonzalez campaign. We'll close with Nader in a moment, but first, the Dems. Paul Bedard (US News & World Reports) notes that Barack's campaign is still suffering problems from Wesley Clark's remarks [see yesterday's snapshot or Deilah Boyd's (A Scriveners Lament) post here] and now also from Barack's efforts to distance himself from Clark and includes these observations by Suzi Parker, "Obama can kiss Arkansas goodbye. A lot of Dems are mad that Obama threw Clark under the bus and denounced his comments about McCain. If anything, they think the Obama should have just let the comments lie. A lot of Dems I am talking to are Clintonites but also supported Clark in 2004 [when he ran for president]. Also hearing from Clark supporters who were in the draft movement that the Obama folks must have forgotten Clark has a massive database of supporters that has only gotten bigger since 2004 because Clark has been out campaigning for Dems since then." Susan (Random Thoughts from Reno) blogs, "Now convince me, Obama supporters, your candidate is something other than a ringer for the GOP. This guy is NOT, repeat NOT, a Democrat. Now he wants to expand 'faight-based' programs . . . Yeah, give these outfits federal money and allow them to discriminate. That's REAL progress." Also noting the new support for 'faith-based' programs is Vasleftt (Corrente) who terms it part of "Obama's bottomless pit of capitulation" and withdraws the previous endorsement of Barack. This is on the heels of his cave-in on illegal spying, his broken promise over public financing and, as Klaus Marre (The Hill) points out, Barack's 'big speech' yesterday was a slap-down to MoveOn. If there is a spine in there, presumably, it is collapsible. Finally, Team Nader notes:

We're having a party!
A Nader/Gonzalez House Party!
And we're inviting you to be one of 100 Nader/Gonzalez supporters to host a House Party on Saturday night July 26, 2008.
Sign up now.
With the help of modern technology, you can have Ralph Nader right there with you in your living room.
If you choose to be one of the 100 to host a house party, we will send you a remarkable documentary DVD about Ralph Nader -
An Unreasonable Man and the Awake from Your Slumber DVD starring Ralph Nader and Patti Smith - both autographed by Ralph Nader.
Plus, we'll throw in a special collector's edition Nader/Gonzalez button.
The purpose of the National Nader/Gonzalez House Party Day?
Raise $100,000 to help put Nader/Gonzalez on at least 45 state ballots.
To reach our goal, we are asking that each house party host bring together 20 or more friends, family, and other party goers to donate $50 each. But you can organize your house party any way you want. If you want to bring together 40 people at $25 a pop, that's great. Or four people at $250 a pop, that's good too.
Now, of course, you won't be doing this alone.
Ralph is really excited about our house party project. (
Check out our House Party video here.)
He'll be available that night - either by phone or through the wonders of the Internet - to talk with you and answer your questions.
So, if you want to host a house party -
click here. Our house party staff will answer any and all questions you may have.
If you can't host a house party, please
donate now to help fund our ballot access drive - remember, you can give Nader/Gonzalez up to the legal limit of $4,600. And if you choose, your name will appear on our home page!
So, if you can,
join with us on July 26.
While McCain and Obama continue to flip-flop toward November, Ralph Nader remains steadfast - standing firm on a platform to shift the power away from the corporations and back to the people.
On Sunday, Ralph told ABC's George Stephanapolous that we intend to get on at least 45 states.
And we can't let Ralph down.
Stand by the candidacy that will stand by you.

corey glassthe new york timessabrina tavernisejames risenandrew e. kramerhugh eakinsudarsan raghavansteven mufsonthe washington post
mcclatchy newspapersdoug smiththe los angeles times