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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

Minnesota House: Sending in the Clowns

Category: Minnesota Politics
Posted: 03/22/06 19:20, Edited: 03/22/06 23:06

by Dave Mindeman

They've done it again... the Minnesota House Republicans have brought back their "circus act". This time they are trying to "marry" the Constitutional Environmental Sales Tax Bill to their Marriage Amendment travesty.

The Environmental bill in its original form simply asked voters to dedicate a small portion of the state sales tax to environmental projects. But legislators started tacking other proposals onto it.

The ultimate controversy comes with tacking on the so-called Marriage Amendment. This is just another example of how little respect the House Republican majority has for the process.

It's another "circus"....like the 24 hour waiting bill being tacked onto an inconsequential Circus Bill a couple of years ago. Using parliamentary trickery, they stripped the circus part of the bill out and sent the 24 hour abortion waiting period bill directly to the Senate floor.

An MPR report quoted a citizen environmental lobbyist:

This was all too much for Tom Jes of Plymouth, who called the actions of the House Tax Committee a joke.
"I'm almost ready to say we need the clown suits out back, so that somebody can get in there and dance around!" he said.

Even the bill's sponsor, Tom Hackbarth, a Republican House member vented his disgust in the MPR report:

"They don't want it to happen. They're trying to do it in a way that they don't have to upset the hunters and fisherman out there, so we need our little piece of pie and we're going to try to kill this thing by piling on. And I think that's all this is really coming to right now. It's a political game. Started out to be a very, very nice nonpartisan issue that everybody could have supported."

They preach about just wanting up or down votes on bills... but it apparently only pertains to "their" bills on "their" terms.

Here we go again... send in the clowns.

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WalMart Wants Your Mortgage Too

Category: Society
Posted: 03/21/06 10:53

by Paul Bartlett

After devastating small town business districts across America,
Wal-Mart now has its eye on a new prize: banking. They are pursuing federal bank licensing and have offered a benign explanation: they just want to save a few bucks processing their own credit card receipts. Nonsense.

Wal-Mart is a cancer that has spread though our nation's body. Remember when Wal-Mart was just the cheesy discounter that advertised "Buy American?" Now you would be hard pressed to find any American made products at Wal-Mart, just crap from China. After Sam passed, the Wal-Mart corporate ethos became destroy the competition. In small towns, this monster dominates in general retail, pharmacy, food, gasoline and auto repair. Now they want to squeeze out community banks. What's next, take over the corner bar?

Wal-Mart has destroyed family businesses across America. And for what benefit? So we can save 25 cents on a hammer? Wal-Mart has devoured its business prey like a raptor ripping at carrion, while under paid Wal-Mart employees line up to collect government assistance.
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Moussaoui Trial: Bush Loses

Category: US Politics
Posted: 03/20/06 22:17

by Dave Mindeman

There is, yet another, stunning piece of the puzzle coming out of the Zacharias Moussaoui trial. In the middle of the news that the prosecution got slapped down for coaching witnesses, the cross examination testimony of Minneapolis FBI Agent, Harry Samit puts the Bush administration into another lame excuse hole.

Samit has echoed the critique of FBI procedure that Coleen Rowley advanced in 2002. Harry Samit went even furthur:

Quoting from the AP article on the trial:

MacMahon (the defense attorney) displayed a communication addressed to Samit and FBI headquarters agent Mike Maltbie from a bureau agent in Paris relaying word from French intelligence that Moussaoui was "very dangerous," had been indoctrinated in radical Islamic Fundamentalism at London's Finnsbury Park mosque, was "completely devoted" to a variety of radical fundamentalism that Osama bin Laden espoused, and had been to Afghanistan

This communication arrived at FBI headquarters on August 30, 2001. This tidbit makes the following piece of the article, with a quote from the 9/11 Commission Report, so very important:

The Sept. 11 Commission reported that British intelligence told U.S. officials on Sept 13, 2001, that Moussaoui had attended an al-Qaida training camp in Afghanistan. "Had this information been available in late August 2001, the Moussaoui case would almost certainly have received intense, high-level attention," the commission concluded.

It was there, it was relevant, and it was ignored.

How long do we put up with this incompetence. They have fumbled and bumbled their way under the guise of telling the world they are the only ones that can protect US citizens. The ones who must be elected in order to assure the safety of the United States.

And so we are led to believe that it is too dangerous to censure the President? It is becoming clear that we need to thoroughly investigate this entire administration. They are leading us to disasters we can't even imagine.

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