Janet's Conner

This Blog tell the Truth and will never not tell the Truth. Impeach Bush

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

HASTERT: HOUSE MAY CHALLENGE OFFICE SEARCH

House Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL) said Sunday he may challenge a judge's order allowing FBI agents to examine documents seized at a Louisiana congressman's Capitol Hill office in a bribery probe.

***Why? What are you so afraid of Mr. Hastert and don't give us any of this constitutional B.S. either because you have done nothing but rip into the Constitution whenever your "master" tells you too!

Hastert said he believed Rep. William Jefferson (news, bio, voting record), (D-LA), was "in big trouble" and that the House would not be joining in support of Jefferson himself. But he said the House seperately might seek to make clear its position that the Justice Department cannot randomly and wantonly search lawmakers' offices.

***Although you think you are Mr. Hastert, lawmakers are not above the law. You can and will be held responsible for your actions!

"The gentleman from Louisiana is in big trouble, as far as I'm concerned. And we're not trying to protect him," said Hastert, R-IL.

***I wonder why he didn't mention all of the Republicans, including himself that are in trouble! I guess it feels good for him to be able to talk about someone else, huh? This way, it keeps his mind off of his own problems. Don't you just love people like him?

"But there has to be a procedure for the Justice Department to come in and just start searching any congressman's office," he said. "We may take a fine line depending on how the negotiations are. There is a constitutional division there that we have to protect."

***Constitutional division! There he goes! What about all of the people's constitutional rights that you take away from them for no reason at all?

Last week, Chief U.S. District Judge Thomas F. Hogan denied Jefferson's request to delay the investigation while the congressman appeals the judge's earlier ruling that the office search was legal.

As a result of Hogan's ruling, Jeffereson is seeking to bar a "filter team" of FBI agents from reviewing the seized documents pending an appeal. The filter team, which is unconnected to the prosecution team, would review records to determine if they were responsive to the items listed in a court warrant authorizing the search.

Investigators have been looking into whether the congressman promoted the sale of telecommunications equipment and services in exchange for stock and cash. Jefferson has not been charged and has denied wrongdoing.

On Sunday, Hastert said FBI agents should be able to search for documents on any criminal aspect, but that they do not have a right to "take all your records," such as confidential tax forms.

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has directed that any review of the documents by the filter team not begin until Thursday to give jusges time to consider Jefferson's call for a delay.

***Who are they kidding? They've been through those records and are already getting a case prepared! It's the government and they do as they please! And he's a Democratic congressman, so the sooner they get him out, there's a possibility that they can replace him with another Republican. Just what we don't need, another lapdog!

Hastert appeared on "Fox News Sunday."

***That figures!

Yahoo News
Associated Press
July 23, 2006



MICHAUD REQUESTS INVESTIGATION OF VAs EFFORTS TO TREAT VETERANS WITH TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY

NEWS FROM.....

CONGRESSMAN MICHAEL H. MICHAUD
RANKING DEMOCRATIC MEMBER
SUBCOMMITTEE ON HEALTH
COMMITTEE ON VETERANS' AFFAIRS
U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

MICHAUD REQUESTS INVESTIGATION OF VAs EFFORTS TO TREAT VETERANS WITH TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY

WASHINGTON---Representative Michael Michaud (D-ME), the Ranking Democratic Member of the Health Subcommittee of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee, has asked the Government Accountability Office (GAO), Congress' investigative arm, to conduct a comprehensive study of the Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) efforts to identify and treat veterans with mild traumatic brain injury (TBI).

"Many of our troops who survive the blasts from improvised explosives devices are at risk of brain damage. With thousands of our troops in Iraq and Afghanastan at risk of TBI, this injury may be the silent signature wound of this war," said Michaud.

Servicemembers who sustain a closed head injury may have a mild TBI, which may not be readily identified by medical professionals, veterans, or their families. Mild TBI symptoms, including slower or confused thinking, memory loss, and mood changes, may not be evident for months or years after the initial injury.

Michaud's request for the GAO study came after newspaper reports that researchers screening returning troops found that 10% suffered at least one minor brain injury during combat, which my go undiagnosed because troops have no visible wounds.

In addition, the congressionally created VA Committee on the Care of Severe Chronically Mentally III Veterans has identified that the VA needs to develop resources to identify and treat returning veterans who have brain damage. The Committee recommended significant initiatives to address the needs of veterans with TBI.

VAs Inspector General recently issued a report that gave the VA mixed reviews for its treatment of severely and moderately brain-injured veterans. VAs case management of veterans care and support for families dealing with a brain-injured veteran were inconsistent.

Michaud's request asks the GAO to determine how the VA ensures that veterans who have experienced a mild TBI are identified and treated when they seek care at VA medical facilities, how the VA provides the needed education and support for families caring for veterans with TBI, and the obstacles to identifying veterans with mild TBI.

[GAO letter text shown below]


July 25, 2006

The Honorable David M. Walker
Comptroller General of the United States
Government Accountability Office
441 G Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20548

Dear Mr. Walker:

Fatal casualties in Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom (OEF/OIF) from blast-related injuries are lower than in previous conflicts due to improvements in protective combat equipment and advances in the delivery of medicine on the battlefield. From March 2003 through September 2005, two-thirds of all wounded-in-action evacuations from Operation Iraqi Freedom were for injuries due to explosions. Blast-injured servicemembers are at significant risk for a traumatic brain injury (TBI), which may result in long-term symptoms including, altered cognition, personality, and behavior, as well as sensory and motor impairments.

Many servicemembers, who sustain a closed head injury, may have a mild TBI that may not be as readily identified. If left untreated mild TBI can adversely impact basic activities of daily living, social integration, and employment, although early identification and threatment often results in full recovery. The symptoms of mild TBI---memory loss, depression, inability to concentrate and increased anxiety---are often mistaken for mental health concerns, such as post-traumatic stress disorder. Furthermore, symptoms resulting from mild brain injuries may not become evident for weeks, months, or years after the initial exposure. While servicemembers with moderate to severe injuries are often recognized and transferred for treatment, those with mild injuries may be returned to duty immediately or shortly after sustaining their injuries. As a result, many servicemembers with mild TBI might experience a delay in identification and treatment. This could have significant effects on them later in life and on VAs patient workload as servicemembers transition from military back to civilian life. In addition, the emotional difficulties and behavioral changes associated with TBI can put families in crisis.

Because of the potential implications for VA health care, veterans and their families, I am requesting that GAO identify:

* How the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) ensures that veterans who have experienced a mild TBI are identified and treated when they seek care at VA medical facilities;

* How the VA provides the needed education and support for families caring for veterans with TBI;

* The obstacles to identifying veterans with mild TBI.

If you have any questions regarding this request, please contact Linda Bennett of the House Committee on Veteran's Affairs, at (202) 225-9756.

Sincerely,

MICHAEL H. MICHAUD
Ranking Democratic Member
Subcommittee on Health

IRAQ: CIVIL WAR WON'T END UNTIL TROOPS LEAVE IRAQ

On a bend in the Tigris River in north Baghdad people try to prevent their children from seeing the headless and tortured bodies that drift ashore every day. The numbers of civilians being killed in Iraq may top 1,000 a week in July after reaching 3,149 in June.

***Thanks to the three stooges that lied us into Iraq! Bush/Cheney/Rove!

I have been visiting Baghdad in peace and war sice 1978 and I have never seen this city of 6 million people so paralyzed by fear. The streets are empty in the middle of the day because Sunni and Shiite Muslims are terrified of running into a checkpoint manned by members of the other community who may kill them after a glance at their identity cards.

***I thought Bush said that we have "turned another corner." To where? A living hell? Why does the Bush Administration and the Republicans continue to lie and tell us that things are going well? I just can't understand their logic! Worse though, are the people that believe them.

Civil war is raging across central Iraq. Baghdad, a city whose population is almost the same as London, is splitting into hostile and heavily armed districts. Minorities, be they Sunni or Shiite, are being killed of forced to flee. People dare not even take their furniture in case this might alert their neighbors to their departure and lead to their deaths. Sunni no longer let the mostly Shiite police enter their districts.

"If this isn't civil war," a senior Iraqi official said last weekend, "I don't know what is."

It is at this moment that the new Iraqi prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, arrived in London to see Prime Minister Tony BLair and to deny Iraq is sliding into civil war. He spoke confidently about disarming militias. He has now gone to the U.S. to see President Bush, and, if he follows the ignoble and cowardly tradition of Iraqi leaders visiting the U.S. over the past three years, will most likely repeat what he said in London.

***If the Iraqi Prime Minister goes against the U.S., Bush will only have more elections. This country wasn't turned backed over to the Iraqis like Bush claims. The U.S. is running that country. Bush and the Republicans are running that country into the ground just like they are running this country into the ground! They are looking for the "end days" that their religion predicts. Don't they realize that they are the ones causing it! Your damned right they know that they are causing it. They think that those who survive are the ones selected by God. The only reason they will survive is because they'll be in a bunker somewhere! But, they'll have to come out of that bunker sometime, won't they?

"When our so-called leaders go to Washington they always produce a rosey picture of what is happening in Iraq for Americans, though they know it is a lie," sighed one veteran Iraqi politician.

Iraqi leaders are not what the seem. They live in the Green Zone, the heavily fortified enclave guarded by U.S. troops, in the heart of Baghdad. Many never leave it except for extensive foreign travel. Eighteen months ago, an Iraqi magazine claimed to have discovered that at one point the entire cabinet was out of the country at the same time.

The government remains reliant on the U.S. One former minister told me: "There is a culture of dependency. Part of the time the Americans treat us as a colony, part of the time as an independent country."

Al-Maliki became prime minister only because the U.S. and Britain were determined to get rid of his predecessor, Ibrahim al-Jaafari. Al-Maliki is inexperienced, personally isolated without his own kitchen cabinet, guarded by U.S. guards and heavily reliant on shadowy U.S. advisers.

The quasi-colonial nature of the Iraqi government may not be obvious to outsiders who see that it has been dramaticlly elected. But its independence has always been a mirage.

***Hezbollah expected Israel to attack them, but not until September or October. Things have gotten so bad in Iraq, that the U.S. and Israel made the attack now. Why? Because Iraq has gotten so bad that that's all that would have been in the news. It's contradicting everything that Bush and the Republicans have been saying about Iraq. They had to get it out of the news! Dont forget, the elections are coming up and the Democrats would slaughter them with everything going on in Iraq. Some of you may be asking, "but would they go this far?" Yes! They went to Iraq based on nothing, didn't they?

For instance, its own intelligence organization should be essential to a government fighting for its life against a violent insurgency. At first sight, Iraq may appear to have one under Maj.-Gen. Mohammed al-Shahwani, but it has no budget because it is funded directly by the CIA, to the tune of $110M to$160M a year and, not surprising, it is to the CIA that it first reports. Not surprising, Iraqis will need a lot of convincoing that Al-Maliki is not one more U.S. pawn.

***Those who cannot see the al-Maliki is just another U.S. pawn are blind. They all were until they started seeing what is really going on there and started opening up their mouths. That's when Bush has re-elections. Anybody who thinks that Bush is doing a good job in Iraq are sheep. Baaaaaaaah!

In theory he should be in charge of a substantial army force. The number of trained Iraqi soldiers and police has grown from 169,000 to 264,000 this June. But the extra 105,000 armed men have not only made no difference to security in Iraq but that security has markedly deteriorated over the past year. The reason is that the armed forces put their allegiance to their own communities---Kurd, Sunni or Shiite---well before their loyalty to the state. Shiites do not believe they will be defended from a pogrom by Sunni units and the Sunni feel the same way about Shiite units.

***This is a civil war! That's what happens. You protect your own. It's called survival!

This is why the militias are growing in strength. Everybody wants an armed militia from their own community to defend their neighborhoods. In any case, the largest political parties making up the present Iraqi government---the Kurds and the two biggest Shiite religious parties---all have their private armies, which they are not going to see dissolved.

***One day, all of these militias are going to turn on the U.S. troops there. After we showed them everything we know!

Not only is al-Maliki's suggestion that the militiamen might be stood down unture but also the trend is entirely the other way. The army and police are themselves becoming sectarian and ethnic militias. This makes absurd Bush's and Tony Blair's claim that at some stage the U.S.-trained Iraqi security forces will be strong enough to stand alone.

Al-Maliki's visit to Washington has more to do with the White House's domestic political agenda than with the dire reality of Iraq. The Bush administration wants to have live Iraqis say in the lead-up to mid-term elections in November that progress is being made in Iraq. A frustration of being a journalist in Iraq is that the lethal anarchy there cannot be reported without getting oneslf killed in the process.

Can anything be done to lead Iraq out of this savage civil war even if it is now too late to stop it? Friction among Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds was always likely after the fall of Saddam Hussein. But what has divided the communities most is their differing attitude to foreign occupation. Ending this is essential if this war is to be brought to an end.