ASSOCIATED PRESS: Two FBI workers are accused of using surveillance equipment to spy on teenage girls as they undressed and tried on prom gowns at a charity event at a West Virginia mall. The FBI employees have been charged with conspiracy and criminal invasion of privacy. They were working in an FBI satellite control room at the mall when they positioned a camera on temporary changing rooms and zoomed in for at least 90 minutes on girls dressing for the Cinderella Project fashion show, Marion County Prosecutor Pat Wilson said yesterday. Gary Sutton Jr., 40, of New Milton, and Charles […]

Spanish Prosecutors To Bring Bush 6 Up On Charges

DAILY BEAST: Spanish prosecutors have decided to press forward with a criminal investigation targeting former U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and five top associates over their role in the torture of five Spanish citizens held at Guantánamo, several reliable sources close to the investigation have told The Daily Beast. The six defendants—in addition to Gonzales, Federal Appeals Court Judge and former Assistant Attorney General Jay Bybee, University of California law professor and former Deputy Assistant Attorney General John Yoo, former Defense Department general counsel and current Chevron lawyer William J. Haynes II, Vice President Cheney’s former chief of staff David […]

THE WAGES OF TORTURE: Zero Terror Plots Were Foiled By The Waterboard Confessions Of Abu Zubaida

WASHINGTON POST: When CIA officials subjected their first high-value captive, Abu Zubaida, to waterboarding and other harsh interrogation methods, they were convinced that they had in their custody an al-Qaeda leader who knew details of operations yet to be unleashed, and they were facing increasing pressure from the White House to get those secrets out of him. The methods succeeded in breaking him, and the stories he told of al-Qaeda terrorism plots sent CIA officers around the globe chasing leads. In the end, though, not a single significant plot was foiled as a result of Abu Zubaida’s tortured confessions, according to […]

HOMELAND INSECURITY: Big Brother’s Excellent Misadventure And Terrifying Constitutional Crisis

EDITOR’S NOTE: HIGHLY RECOMMENDED WASHINGTON POST: A Near-Meltdown As the election season got underway in early 2004, a secret battle over the legality of warrantless domestic surveillance brought the Bush administration to the brink of a mass exodus from the Justice Department and FBI. A guide to who knew and did what about the surveillance program:   Dick Cheney The vice president, conceived and supervised the domestic surveillance program. He kept President Bush out of the loop on the legal crisis until it was nearly too late. David S. Addington Counsel to Vice President Cheney, fought against any concession to […]

How Hillary Becomes Chief Justice Of SCOTUS

VIA NEW YORK TIMES: WHEN a majority of Supreme Court justices adopt a manifestly ideological agenda, it plunges the court into the vortex of American politics. If the Roberts court has entered voluntarily what Justice Felix Frankfurter once called the “political thicket,” it may require a political solution to set it straight. When the court overreaches, the Constitution provides checks and balances. In 1805, after persistent political activity by Justice Samuel Chase, Congress responded with its power of impeachment. Chase was acquitted, but never again did he step across the line to mingle law and politics. After the Civil War, […]

HECKUVA JOB, COOKIE: The Brother Of The Guy Whose Job It Is To Investigate Blackwater Sits On The Board Of Advisors For…wait for it…Blackwater!

Earlier today CROOKS & LIARS posted video from a House hearing dealing with allegations that State Department Inspector General Howard “Cookie” Krongard impeded investigations into corruption in Iraq. During the hearing, Krongard repeatedly denied rumors that his brother, Buzzy Krongard was on Blackwater’s advisory board — but on tonight’s Countdown we learned that lo and behold, after returning from a break in testimony, Krongard informed the Committee that he had just spoken with his brother and that he did, in fact, sit on Blackwater’s board and that he was recusing himself from any further matters dealing with the mercenary contractor. […]

NY TIMES: No One Expected The Spanish Inquisition!

WASHINGTON, Oct. 3 — When the Justice Department publicly declared torture “abhorrent” in a legal opinion in December 2004, the Bush administration appeared to have abandoned its assertion of nearly unlimited presidential authority to order brutal interrogations. But soon after Alberto R. Gonzales‘s arrival as attorney general in February 2005, the Justice Department issued another opinion, this one in secret. It was a very different document, according to officials briefed on it, an expansive endorsement of the harshest interrogation techniques ever used by the Central Intelligence Agency. The new opinion, the officials said, for the first time provided explicit authorization […]

NPR FOR THE DEAF: We Hear It Even When You Can’t

FRESH AIR For 25 years, author and journalist Ahmed Rashid has covered Pakistan, Afghanistan and Central Asia. He files for English language papers including the International Herald Tribune, The Wall Street Journal and The Daily Telegraph. Based in Lahore, Rashid is the author of the bestselling books, Taliban and Jihad. ALSO, Critic Milo Miles reviews the new four DVD set, “Popeye the Sailor 1933-1938.” The animated series features the classic Popeye cartoons by the Fleischer brothers studios. Miles calls the set a first rate reissue. RADIO TIMES Hour 1 (Rebroadcast tonight at 11) Observers of the Justice Department say that […]

MUST HEAR RADIO: It Can’t Happen Here?

FRESH AIR As head of the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, Jack Goldsmith led the team of lawyers that advises the presidency on the limits of executive power. During his tenure, he battled the Bush White House on the now-infamous “torture memos,” as well as on issues of surveillance and the detention and trial of suspected terrorists. Goldsmith resigned his post after nine months. He’s speaking publicly for the first time about why he resigned in a new memoir, The Terror Presidency — which also recounts what he witnessed in Attorney General John Ashcroft’s hospital room, when Alberto Gonzales and […]


EDITOR’S NOTE: Ordinarily, I would say this sort of thing was recklessly inflammatory, wildly irresponsible and patently offensive to many. Ordinarily. * THE LAST HURRAH: As he said to the WSJ, he wants to spend more time with this family. Of course, this is a load of horse puckey — if he had wanted to spend time with his family, he surely would have done it before his son went to college… So it’s quite possible that Rove is leaving just three steps ahead of one of the many sheriffs that have him in their sights. These include: The Abramoff […]

Dems Drop Soap In GOP Shower, Constitution Raped

“Congressional Democrats redefine spinelessness with the new FISA law.” SLATE: BY PATRICK RADDEN KEEFE In an editorial last year, the New York Times likened the Bush administration’s efforts to retroactively make its warrantless wiretapping program legal, to a person caught speeding who persuades the legislature to raise the speed limit. The new surveillance bill President Bush signed into law Sunday takes this analogy to its logical extreme: Where government surveillance is concerned, the new law eliminated speed limits altogether. The infrastructure this nation established following Watergate to govern domestic spying has died many little deaths in the years since 9/11. […]


First came this video… To which the Edwards campaign responded with this video… And finally, this video… After Nixon’s 1968 Peace Feint, Watergate, Willie Horton (or the toned down version where the scary black man that will rape your wife and kill your family if Michael Dukakis is elected was merely implied, not explicitly shown) Gennifer Flowers, the Great Swiftboat Slander — is anybody starting to notice a pattern here? A lattice of coincidence? A vague constellation of recurrence, perhaps? Happens about every four years…always to the detriment of one party and the benefit of another…Is this ringing a bell? […]

SHIT HITS FAN: Rove Subpoenaed, Meyers Facing Contempt Charges, Schumer Asks Special Counsel To Investigate Attorney General For Lying To Congress

WASHINGTON — The head of the FBI contradicted Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’ sworn testimony and Senate Democrats requested a perjury investigation Thursday in a fresh barrage against President Bush’s embattled longtime friend and aide. In a third blow to the Bush administration, the Senate Judiciary Committee issued subpoenas to compel the testimony of Karl Rove [artist’s rendering, above], Bush’s chief political adviser, in connection with its investigation. “It has become apparent that the attorney general has provided at a minimum half-truths and misleading statements,” four Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee wrote in a letter to Solicitor General Paul Clement […]