Sunday, December 11, 2011
With age come such things as catheters, colostomy bags and adult diapers. Now add another indignity to getting old -- having to drop your pants and show these things to a complete stranger.
Two women in their 80s put the Transportation Security Administration on the defensive this week by going public about their embarrassment during screenings in a private room at Kennedy Airport. One claimed she was forced to lower her pants and underwear in front of an agent so that her back brace could be inspected. Another said agents made her pull down her waistband to show her colostomy bag.
While not confirming some of the details, the TSA said a preliminary review shows officers followed the agency’s procedures in both cases. But experts said the potential for such searches will increase as the U.S. population ages and receives prosthetics and other medical devices, some of which cannot go through screening machines.
US Defense cuts have also cast doubt on the possibility of troops securing military jobs inside the country.
“Right now the unemployment rate nationwide is through the roof," said Staff Sergeant Brett Bolton, an Air Force truck driver who has served for six years.
Uncertainty about the future has taken the joy out of being relieved of military duty for most troops.
"I've done my six years. I feel like I've done enough and I want to go back to the civilian world, but right now it's not looking too good for me,” VOA website quoted Bolton as saying on Saturday.
In an earlier interview with Press TV, Edward Spannaus, Legal Affairs editor in Washington D.C, had described the situation of returning soldiers and veterans as a national disgrace, saying that budget cuts aimed at saving the near collapse US economy would only make the situation worse.
"Young men and women join the army these days precisely because it's the only job they can get. The people tend to come from the poor layers of the society and overwhelmingly from the poor states in the country," Spannaus said.
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, unemployment for veterans who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan is higher than the national average. Their rate of unemployment is rated at about 12 percent as opposed to the 9 percent nationwide average.
The youngest of veterans, aged 18 to 24, had a 30 percent jobless rate in October; a drastic hike from the 18 percent of last year.
There are currently about 39,000 US soldiers in Iraq. According to a 2008 bilateral security accord, known as the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA), all the US troops are required to leave the country by the end of this year.
Bill O'Reilly attacks a journalist with his umbrella because he asked him some questions. After hitting the man with his umbrella, Bill tells the police the man was assaulting him and tries to get them to arrest him! The police apparently told him you can't press charges on someone who never laid a hand on you, to which Bill was apparently outraged!
After you watch that video, check out this video of Bill O'Reilly lying about this incident with an "ex-police detective" who says Bill had every right to assault the man! It's one of the most bizarre backwards interviews I've ever seen, I wonder if idiot neo-cons watching are going to go around assaulting people for videotaping them while thinking they're fully within the law!
Bomb Used in Trade Center Blast"
December 11, 2011
The Core of the Patriot Act Was Drafted in 1995 … By Joe Biden
Everyone knows that the Patriot Act was drafted before 9/11.
But few know that it was Joe Biden who drafted the core provisions which were included in that bill … in1995.
CNET reported in 2008:
Months before the Oklahoma City bombing took place, Biden introduced another bill called the Omnibus Counterterrorism Act of 1995. It previewed the 2001 Patriot Act by allowing secret evidence to be used in prosecutions, expanding the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and wiretap laws, creating a new federal crime of “terrorism” that could be invoked based on political beliefs, permitting the U.S. military to be used in civilian law enforcement, and allowing permanent detention of non-U.S. citizens without judicial review.* The Center for National Security Studies said the bill would erode“constitutional and statutory due process protections” and would “authorize the Justice Department to pick and choose crimes to investigate and prosecute based on political beliefs and associations.”
Biden himself draws parallels between his 1995 bill and its 2001 cousin. “I drafted a terrorism bill after the Oklahoma City bombing. And the bill John Ashcroft sent up was my bill,” he said when the Patriot Act was being debated, according to the New Republic, which described him as “the Democratic Party’s de facto spokesman on the war against terrorism.”
Biden’s proposal probably helped to lay the groundwork for the Bush administration’s Patriot Act.
The Center for National Securities reported in 1995:
On February 10, 1995, a counterterrorism bill drafted by the Clinton
Administration was introduced in the Senate as S. 390 and in the House of
Representatives as H.R. 896.
The Clinton bill is a mixture of: provisions eroding constitutional and
statutory due process protections, selective federalization — on political
grounds — of state crimes (minus state due process rules), discredited
ideas from the Reagan and Bush Administrations, and the extension of some of
the worst elements of crime bills of the recent past.
The legislation would:
1. authorize the Justice Department to pick and choose crimes to
investigate and prosecute based on political beliefs and associations;
2. repeal the ancient provision barring the U.S. military from civilian
3. expand a pre-trial detention scheme that puts the burden of proof on
4. loosen the carefully-crafted rules governing federal wiretaps, in
violation of the Fourth Amendment;
5. establish special courts that would use secret evidence to order the
deportation of persons convicted of no crimes, in violation of basic
principles of due process;
6. permit permanent detention by the Attorney General of aliens convicted
of no crimes, with no judicial review;
7. give the President unreviewable power to criminalize fund-raising for
lawful activities associated with unpopular causes;
8. renege on the Administration’s approval in the last Congress of a
provision to insure that the FBI would not investigate based on First
Amendment activities; and
9. resurrect the discredited ideological visa denial provisions of the
McCarran Walter Act to bar foreign speakers.
* Note: The CNET article contains a typographical error, using the word “detection” instead of “detention” in the sentence: “allowing permanent detection of non-U.S. citizens without judicial review”. Not only does this make no sense, but a review of the bill confirms that it provided for permanent detention.