The Filibuster and the Gates of Hell

Many of you who have come to TPZoo via Think Progress will remember the the Senate filibuster of the Levin-Reed Amendment on July 17, 2007. It was a long night of partying for many of us.

How sad that the Senate Democrats have not seen fit to provide us with more nights like that one. Kagro X at Daily Kos, addressing Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ recommendation of “a veto of a Senate proposal that would give troops more rest between deployments in Iraq,” writes of how the phrase “60 votes needed for passage” has become a way of framing a process that helps make the Republicans look less obstructionist. The term “filibuster” is avoided, as behind the scenes deals keep this potentially embarrassing tactic from being employed.

HT: Atrios.

Miracle 12-Inch Tube… The Answer?


via: The Mail

It sounds too good to be true – not to mention the fact that it violates almost every known law of physics.But British scientists claim they have invented a revolutionary device that seems to ‘create’ energy from virtually nothing.

Their so-called thermal energy cell could soon be fitted into ordinary homes, halving domestic heating bills and making a major contribution towards cutting carbon emissions.
Read the rest of the article….

(This photo isn’t the actual tube mentioned in the article..)

(Photo used by permission – by jpockele)

Big Hole in the Desert

There is a great post over on FiredogLake called “Big Hole in the Desert” by Siun. It looks into the brief mention in recent news of a possible bombing of Syria by Israel. This post by Siun sheds a little more light by looking at a number of sources.

A little over a week ago, I was startled by a headline on NewsNow* mentioning an Israeli air strike on Syria. No one seems to really know what happened. On September 6, Israel launched as many as 8 fighter jets and flew across Syria – possibly bombing … well, something. There are rumours and hints: Syria claims Israel violated their airspace and Syrian air forces drove them off, an early report from US sources claimed that Israel had bombed a Syrian shipment of weapons to Hezbollah and Israeli reports gave nothing away but said that air force officers were looking pleased with themselves. All in all, it is quite a mystery.

ht: Siun for the great video.

Can Bush Count?

After Bush’s so-called speech the other night, and after Bush cited IN that speech 36 countries “who have troops on the ground in Iraq”, Spencer Ackerman over at Talking Points Memo – Muckraker decided to do a little fact-checking himself. What he found was a little surprising…. or maybe not so much…
His column is called “36(ish) Countries in Iraq!”.

Why does Bush find it necessary to lie to the American people? Or is the problem Bush just can’t count..?
All joking aside, just who are they counting, and why are they trying so hard to make it sound like so much more than it is?
ht: TPM

British academics warn US is preparing “shock and awe” attack on Iran

An 80-page study written by two British security analysts and released on August 28 makes a chilling estimation of the overwhelming force that the US would use in the event of any attack on Iran. “The US has made military preparations to destroy Iran’s WMD, nuclear energy, regime, armed forces, state apparatus and economic infrastructure within days, if not hours, of President George W. Bush giving the order,” the paper declared.

The authors, Dr Dan Plesch and Martin Butcher, concluded on the basis of publicly available sources that “US bombers and long range missiles are ready today to destroy 10,000 targets within Iran in a few hours. US ground, air and marine forces already in the Gulf, Iraq and Afghanistan can devastate Iranian forces, the regime and the state at short notice.”

Continue reading

Lincoln Chafee quietly quits the GOP

According to the Rhode Island News:

Lincoln D. Chafee, who lost his Senate seat in the wave of anti-Republican sentiment in last November’s election, said yesterday that he has left the party.

Chafee said he disaffiliated with the party he had helped lead, and his father had led before him, because the national Republican Party has gone too far away from his stance on too many critical issues, from war to economics to the environment.

Another life-long Republican walks away. Chafee’s voting record often got him labeled as an ‘independent’ because of his support of more ‘moderate’ or ‘progressive’ issues, such as stem-cell research, abortion, gay rights, and his opposition to the death penalty among other issues. With this defection, the Republican party continues to implode.

“Mushroom Cloud” revisited

The mystery about Israel’s airstrike on Syria seems to be lifted

According to “The Times” Syria and North Korea and possibly Iran, the “Axis of Evil”, were caught in a very strange collaboration plot on nuclear materials, between unlikely allies. Call me cynical or accuse me of tunnel vision, but it’s always the same arguments. The war drums are beating.

Update: “The Times” has retracted the body of the linked article (Thanks for the tip, TMM!) There are two more stories available there now, which are interesting reading here and here. I hope they stay up long enough for you to read. “The Independent” informed us, that British troops are being deployed to the Iraqi/Iranian border, and that the British are non too happy about that. The “Times” seems to provide the media blitz needed for justification of this move. And the war drums are picking up speed.

Update II

The “Times” links to the article again. (Thanks TMM)

Alan Greenspan claims Iraq War was really for oil

Alan Greenspan’s new book “The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World” is released in the US on Monday September 17th.

In an article on TimesOnline (Great Britain):

“In his long-awaited memoir, to be published tomorrow, Greenspan, a Republican whose 18-year tenure as head of the US Federal Reserve was widely admired, will also deliver a stinging critique of President George W Bush’s economic policies.However, it is his view on the motive for the 2003 Iraq invasion that is likely to provoke the most controversy. “I am saddened that it is politically inconvenient to acknowledge what everyone knows: the Iraq war is largely about oil,” he says.”

This of course will come as a complete and utter shock to the country and the rest of the planet. Really, we had no idea…