Monday, June 23, 2008

Price votes right on war funding and wiretapping

I was suprised to see in the paper Sunday that Representative David Price voted on the 19th against HR 2642, giving Bush and Cheney $162.5 billion more dollars for the supposed "War on Terror" in Iraq and Afghanistan.  The bill even prohibited permanent bases in Iraq, but to end the war, funding has to be cut off, though that might not be why Price voted against the funding.  Then on the 20th he voted against HR 6304, the FISA Amendments Act of 2008 (online at, which abets the government's warrantless spying on Americans and immunizes those companies that gave the government access against lawsuits.  Unfortunately both bills passed in the House.  Butterfield, Watt, and Miller also voted no on the war funding bill and Watt and Miller also voted against the FISA bill, and Jones for whatever reason did not vote. 
Price did vote on the 11th to refer Kucinich's H. Res. 1285, Impeaching George W. Bush, President of the United States, of high crimes and misdemeanors.  I assume this means referring it to the House Judicial Committee, which probably is a neutral act, but everyone must expect the Committee to bury yet another impeachment bill. With the war funding and FISA bills, Congress bought into Bush-Cheney's crimes once again.  The Senate is even more "responsible" in its decisions than the House, so I assume the bills will pass easily, and I think Obama has expressed support for the FISA bill. 
One question is whether Price is voting this way because he is coming up for re-election.  Either way it is a good trend, but he needs to do more.  He is willing to lead on limiting military contractors, but he is more willing to talk about Bush-Cheney's crimes than to take decisive steps to stop them.  There is also no reason to think he won't vote to openly support imperialism again, like he did in the summer of 2006 when he voted to endorse Israel's war on Lebanon and villify the resistance to Zionist expansionism.   

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Rep. Kucinich's articles of impeachment against Bush

Monday evening Representative Dennis Kucinich read his 35 articles of impeachment to the House live on CSPAN, and they were read into the record by a clerk Tuesday evening.  I think the articles are now in the House Judiciary Committee.  Scott McClellan will give sworn testimony at a hearing scheduled for the 20th.  This is something to press David Price on at his Durham town hall meeting, which is on the 16th at 7pm at the Museum of Life and Science.
The criminal actions of the Bush Administration need to be condemned through impeachment so that the next president will be less likely to follow Bush and Cheney's example and to stop them before they start a war with Iran.      

Monday, February 18, 2008

Which side is Rep. Price on regarding wiretapping?

Whenever Representative Price has been asked to support impeachment he has said that he is very concerned about the Administration's actions and that he is for resistance, but short of impeachment.  This past week Price, along with all of the State's Democrats and Republican Walter Jones (only Virginia Foxx voted no), did vote (on H Res 982) to cite White House Chief of Staff Joshua Bolton and former White House Counsel Harriet Miers for contempt, because they ignored subpoenas by Congress regarding the alleged politically motivated firings of US attorneys.  On the other hand, Price (and Butterfield, Etheridge, McIntyre, Shuler, and Miller) supported HR 5349, which would have extended the Protect America Act of 2007 (I think the final version is on as S 1927) for 21 days.  The 21-day extension, which was actually sponsored by the formerly pro-impeachment John Conyers, for domestic wiretapping failed to pass the House and so the program expired over the weekend.  My understanding is that investigations begun under the Act can continue, but no new surveillance can be started under that Act, but the government should have no problem doing whatever it is doing if it goes through the existing Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, if it is not doing anything illegal, and companies remain open to lawsuits for betraying their customers to the government.  

It looks like Price has bought into the Administration's criminality on this issue. 

Of course this week our Republican senators voted against a bill that among other things outlawed waterboarding (this relates to HR 2082, and it passed) and tried to grant immunity to the companies involved in domestic wiretapping (AT&T, Sprint Nextel, and Verizon Communications), by voting yes on S 2248, and no on an amendment to that bill.         

Friday, February 15, 2008

Discrediting the Senate

The N&O reports that the the Senate Ethics Committee"harshly criticized" Senator Larry Craig (R-IL), saying his actions "[constitute] improper conduct reflecting discreditably on the Senate."  Craig seems to have acted improperly, but the biggest discredit on the Senate is its refusal to stand up to the Administration.  They refuse to support impeachment and really they are about as bad as Bush and Cheney, so of course they do not support punishing the criminal acts they have helped the Administration commit.  Consider another item in the news, that the Senate wants to prevent lawsuits against telecommunication companies for collaborating with the government's warrantless spying on Americans.  Even the House did not give the companies immunity.  On top of all of this, the Congress has not ended this violation of FISA.  Don't expect them to do much if an attempt to burn down Congress or some other, more in fashion style of terrorism, is used to install full-blown fascism, which is already practically legal anyway.  The 6 members of the Ethics Committee are Chair Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Vice Chair John Cornyn (R-TX), Mark Pryor (D-AR), Ken Salazar (D-CO), Pat Roberts (R-KS), and Isakson (R-GA), and it would be interesting to see how they have voted on the major issues.  The Committee's website is     

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Bush impeachment bill delayed


Kucinich Postpones Bush Impeachment Effort

by Sabrina Eaton

WASHINGTON — After promising to mark President Bush's final State of the Union speech by introducing articles of0129 06 1 impeachment against Bush, Cleveland Democratic Rep. Dennis Kucinich postponed the effort.

Kucinich said Monday that he met with members of the House Judiciary Committee after making last week's impeachment pledge. He said he came away "hopeful there will be an inquiry by the Judiciary Committee."

"I will give them the opportunity to proceed before introducing articles of impeachment," he said in a statement. The committee's spokeswoman did not respond to requests for comment.

Last year, Kucinich introduced a measure to impeach Vice President Dick Cheney that has collected 24 co-sponsors. His effort to bring the matter before the full House won support from Republicans who wanted to embarrass House Demo cratic leaders, but eventually was referred to the Judiciary Committee.

Kucinich told The Plain Dealer editorial board last week that nine of the Judiciary Committee's 40 members favor his bid to impeach Cheney.

"I do not believe that there will be an impeachment this year — I don't think that will happen — but I do think that the questions relating to an inquiry of both the president and the vice president are important so that our nation has a real understanding of the effort that was made, a consistent effort, to mislead the people into supporting a war," he said.

© 2008 The Plain Dealer

Friday, January 25, 2008

Articles of impeachment against Bush on the 28th

Dennis Kucinich is going to introduce articles of impeachment against Bush on the 28th, when Bush will be giving the State of the Union speech.  This is similar to the articles against Cheney the Congressman introduced in November, which the Republicans voted to bring to a vote in the House, but the Democrats (including Rep. Price) won in the end and sent the bill to the House Judiciary, where it languishes.  Unfortunately Kucinich is going to officially give up his presidential campaign Friday and faces a fight to retain his seat in the House.   
Below is an article from the New York Times, reposted at

Kucinich Starts New Impeachment Drive

by David M. Herszenhorn

Representative Dennis J. Kucinich of Ohio may get excluded from Democratic presidential debates, as he has been recently, but no one can deny him the floor in the House. 0124 03

And today Mr. Kucinich took to the floor to fire off his latest salvo at the Bush administration: his plans to introduce Articles of Impeachment against President Bush on Jan. 28 - the day of Mr. Bush's State of the Union speech.

Accusing the administration of lying about the need for the war in Iraq, Mr. Kucinich said he did not need to hear the president's assessment. "We know the State of the Union," he declared. "It's a lie."

He also fired a volley at House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California
who has maintained that impeaching Mr. Bush is not on the table for Congressional Democrats. "If impeachment is off the table," Mr. Kucinich said, "truth is off the table. If truth is off the table
then this body is living a lie."

Mr. Kucinich introduced Articles of Impeachment against Vice
President Dick Cheney last April and in November, with the surprise help of Republicans seeking to embarrass the Democrats, he nearly succeeded in securing an hour of debate on the House floor. House Democratic leaders blocked that, however, by referring the impeachment effort back to the Judiciary Committee.

Anti-Bush groups have been urging Mr. Kucinich to undertake an
effort to impeach the president.

Copyright 2007 The New York Times Company

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

More confirmation that the Iraq War was begun on lies

This is more confirmation of what the American public already knows - that Bush and Cheney lied (or made "false statements," at least some of which they were told were false before they made them) to commit a war of aggression, for which they should long since have been impeached.  I am still pushing for impeachment and there is still a chance, but the Democratic leadership refuses to consider it and those Democrats who propagandize and vote for the continued occupation of Iraq are guilty too.  This article also is further cause to believe that the statement in the Downing Street Minutes of July 23, 2002 (online at that "the facts and intelligence were being fixed around the policy" of invading Iraq over "the conjunction of terrorism and" weapons of mass destruction meant lying and distorting the truth, and lying to Congress is a felony.  If Bush is a felon, and a war criminal, why is he still in office?  It says something about the Democrats when the Administration's crimes are so obvious, yet they have refused to impeach, obstruct, or even censure.   
Study: False statements preceded war         By DOUGLASS K. DANIEL, Associated Press Writer 1 hour, 26 minutes ago

 A study by two nonprofit journalism organizations found that President Bush and top administration officials issued hundreds of false statements about the national security threat from Iraq in the two years following the 2001 terrorist attacks.
 The study concluded that the statements "were part of an orchestrated campaign that effectively galvanized public opinion and, in the process, led the nation to war under decidedly false pretenses."
 The study was posted Tuesday on the Web site of the Center for Public Integrity, which worked with the Fund for Independence in Journalism.
 White House spokesman Scott Stanzel did not comment on the merits of the study Tuesday night but reiterated the administration's position that the world community viewed Iraq's leader, Saddam Hussein, as a threat.
 "The actions taken in 2003 were based on the collective judgment of intelligence agencies around the world," Stanzel said.
 The study counted 935 false statements in the two-year period. It found that in speeches, briefings, interviews and other venues, Bush and administration officials stated unequivocally on at least 532 occasions that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction or was trying to produce or obtain them or had links to al-Qaida or both.
 "It is now beyond dispute that Iraq did not possess any weapons of mass destruction or have meaningful ties to al-Qaida," according to Charles Lewis and Mark Reading-Smith of the Fund for Independence in Journalism staff members, writing an overview of the study. "In short, the Bush administration led the nation to war on the basis of erroneous information that it methodically propagated and that culminated in military action against Iraq on March 19, 2003."
 Named in the study along with Bush were top officials of the administration during the period studied: Vice President Dick Cheney, national security adviser Condoleezza Rice, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, Secretary of State Colin Powell, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and White House press secretaries Ari Fleischer and Scott McClellan.
 Bush led with 259 false statements, 231 about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and 28 about Iraq's links to al-Qaida, the study found. That was second only to Powell's 244 false statements about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and 10 about Iraq and al-Qaida.
 The center said the study was based on a database created with public statements over the two years beginning on Sept. 11, 2001, and information from more than 25 government reports, books, articles, speeches and interviews.
 "The cumulative effect of these false statements — amplified by thousands of news stories and broadcasts — was massive, with the media coverage creating an almost impenetrable din for several critical months in the run-up to war," the study concluded.
 "Some journalists — indeed, even some entire news organizations — have since acknowledged that their coverage during those prewar months was far too deferential and uncritical. These mea culpas notwithstanding, much of the wall-to-wall media coverage provided additional, 'independent' validation of the Bush administration's false statements about Iraq," it said.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Durham Library room reservations free for non-profit use!

The County Commissioners voted at the meeting Monday to return to the old policy for non-profit room reservations (free, with a $25 dollar fee if there will be refreshments).  This might not apply to the Main Library's Auditorium, and for-profit use still requires a fee.  This is a victory for the community, and I think the campaign by the Durham People's Alliance had a lot of influence.  The PA was not alone in registering its opposition to the fee, though.    

Friday, January 11, 2008

Historic impeachment debate next Tuesday in Carrboro

For Immediate Release:

January 7, 2008 


John Heuer, for general, sponsor and interview information

919-933-6589, 919-444-3823

jheuer at coalitionfortheconstitution dot com 

Hodding Carter III to moderate historic impeachment debate between Bruce Fein and Michael Tomasky 

Conservative Republican and Progressive Journalist will debate Impeachment at the Carrboro Century Center on January 15, 2008 at 7pm.  Guess who's arguing for Impeachment?  

CARRBORO, N.C.: In the tradition of the Lincoln/Douglas Debates, Coalition for the Constitution will host a Debate on Impeachment between Republican Bruce Fein (pro-impeachment) and Democrat Michael Tomasky (anti-impeachment). The Debate will be held on January 15, 2008 at 7pm, at the Carrboro Century Center and will be moderated by UNC Professor of Leadership and Public Policy, W. Hodding Carter III, and hosted by Orange County Commissioner Moses Carey. Seats are limited so preregistration is suggested at The debate will also be webcast on the Coalition for the Constitution web site at 

Impeachment is mentioned six times in the United States Constitution, including most clearly in Article II, section 3 which reads: 

    "The President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors."  

Recently, privileged resolution HR 799 (HR 333 re-introduced), Articles of Impeachment against Vice President Dick Cheney, was introduced on the floor of the House. Former presidential candidate Joe Biden has also raised the impeachment issue on the campaign trail in connection with a possible war with Iran.  

To help the public better understand the pros and cons of impeachment, the organizers have lined up two well-known political pundits to debate and answer those questions. Admission is free and all citizens are encouraged to attend.  

Bruce Fein is a lawyer, specializing in constitutional and international law, who served as an associate deputy attorney general under Ronald Reagan. He has recently been a strong advocate for the impeachment of current U.S. vice-president Dick Cheney and President George W Bush. Fein graduated from Harvard Law School in 1972. In March 2007, he founded the American Freedom Agenda with Bob Barr, David Keene and Richard Viguerie. Fein is counsel to Ron Paul's campaign for the 2008 Presidential nomination. One of his most scathing indictments of Dick Cheney appeared in his article for entitled, "Impeach Cheney, The Vice President has run utterly amok and must be stopped."

Michael Tomasky, is a progressive journalist who has recently written an article about impeachment, entitled, "The Dumbest Move the Dems Could Make", which has been cited by the Democratic Leadership, and 4 th District North Carolina Congressman, David Price, as the reasoning behind their refusal to support impeachment. Tomasky has served as the executive editor of The American Prospect and is the author of Left for Dead: The Life, Death, and Possible Resurrection of Progressive Politics in America (1996), a study of the intellectual collapse of the American left. "Here is a link to his article "The Dumbest Move the Dems could Make ":

Hodding Carter III served as Assistant Secretary of State under President Jimmy Carter. For additional information, please visit: 

Bruce Fein and Michael Tomasky are available for press interviews, starting on January 12th through the 15th. Please contact John Heuer for scheduling arrangements. Telephone 919-933-6589 or 919-444-3823 email

jheuer at coalitionfortheconstitution dot com. 

Fein v. Tomasky Debate

7 pm, January 15, 2008

Carrboro Century Center

# # # 


Thursday, January 10, 2008

Can we trust New Hampshire's voting machines?

After the stolen presidential election of 2000 (because the vote counting was stopped) and the probably stolen election of 2004 (in Ohio), I wonder when the media struggles to explain how polls get results wrong.  Below is something regarding New Hampshire's primary.  There are many problems built into our electoral system that discourage voting, but do we also have to worry that the election will be stolen again this year, or that there will be a shocking "October Surprise" engineered to benefit one side, or even provide a pretext to stop the election (which I hope is unlikely)?  If any of this happens, will the losing side and the American public allow it, or will we refuse to allow it, as people in other countries have risen up against their canceled or stolen elections in recent years? 
>Please distribute widely, Digg, Blog, reprints, get
this to the media, etc.
>A YouTube video from Black Box Voting that you won't
soon forget:
>John Silvestro and his small private business, LHS
Associates, has exclusive programming contracts for
ALL New Hampshire voting machines, which combined will
count about 81 percent of the vote in the primary. And
as to Super Tuesday and beyond: Silvestro also has the
programming contracts for the states of Connecticut,
Massachusetts, and Vermont.
>Silvestro IS the New Hampshire chain of custody in
New England -- Or at least, a very large component in
>Last fall, with the help of citizens like you, Black
Box Voting began working on "Chain of Custody"
projects, in which we identified some of the areas of
concern that might affect many jurisdictions at once.
First on the list for the Northeast U.S. is LHS
Associates, a vendor with inside access to every
memory card, as well as to the chips containing the
"brain" of the Diebold optical scan machines.
>In an unusual confluence of available video, we
obtained footage of Silvestro grappling with Harri
Hursti, the master hacker who had his way with the
Diebold optical scans in Leon County, Florida in the
famous exploit that was showcased in the film Hacking
>The exact same make, model and version hacked in the
Black Box Voting project in Leon County is used
throughout New Hampshire, where about 45 percent of
elections administrators hand count paper ballots at
the polling place, with the remaining locations all
using the Diebold version 1.94w optical scan machine.
Because the voting machine locations tend to be urban,
this represents about 81 percent of the New Hampshire
>The video shows Harri Hursti testifying on Sept. 19
before the New Hampshire legislature, attempting to
explain significant vulnerabilities requiring urgent
mitigations; throughout his testimony, Silvestro
inserted his own comments, opinions, misstatements and
>One area of disagreement between Hursti and Silvestro
was the amount of expertise needed to exploit the
Diebold 1.94w optical scan system. Silvestro claimed
(in a strange contortion of reasoning) that he doesn't
hire very skilled programmers, implying that this
makes New Hampshire elections more secure.
>Hursti pointed out that hiring programmers with a
lack of knowledge is generally not considered a
security feature, and also that an average high
schooler can learn to exploit the system in two days
to two weeks.
>Black Box Voting purchased a Diebold optical scan
with 1.94w firmware, and chose a computer repair shop
out of the phone book, took it in, grabbed the first
available technician. It took him less than 10 minutes
to zero in on the memory card as a point of critical
vulnerability -- and oh my, did he point out some
other intersting things!
>Silvestro tries to claim that the security problems
have been fixed in newer editions. Whether or not they
have been, it's a moot point in New Hampshire where
the upgrade is not made unless the Ballot Law
Commission meets, and they have not met for ages.
>Silvestro then points to extraordinary measures taken
by other states to enact special procedural
safeguards, but of course none of those were
implemented in New Hampshire either, because the
Ballot Law Commission has not bothered to meet since
March 2006.
>Not only that, they have turned all the programming
over to a sole source private company, taking vote
counting for 81 percent of New Hampshire citizens out
of the public domain.
>LHS is not subject to public records requirements, as
the government is, at least, not in New Hampshire. The
control over memory card contents is absolute; when
cards malfunction or get lost, LHS brings the
>Since LHS maintains the machines, repairs the
machines, and replaces the machines -- often on
Election Day -- when they malfunction, they have
intimate access to the chips, sockets, ports,
communications devices and other electronic
>Silvestro stated that the chip has "read only memory"
and cannot be reprogrammed without frying it under
ultraviolet light overnight.
>Hursti never had a chance to examine the hardware,
nor have most of the recent university studies had
access. But our friendly neighborhood computer repair
guy differed with Silvestro on the point of plug &
play reprogramming of the guts of the machine.
>After I push the button to send this message out to
the media and the citizenry, I'll work on getting a
short YouTube video of the Accuvote checkup by our
local computer repairman. And before you say, "But
wait! He's not a world class expert!" -- That's just
the point.
>Our local computer repairman may hit or miss on some
of his analyses. You'll all be able to try your hand
at second guessing him as soon as the next video is
up. But if he hits even one of his ideas for how to
exploit the machine to steal votes, that's all it
takes. From someone who is not, certainly, a world
class hacker or even a hacker at all.
>I'll post the link to that in a follow up here:
, and invite you techs to weigh in.
>Please feel free to distribute, reprint or excerpt,
with link to Black Box Voting and the video link
>Bev Harris
>Black Box Voting
>bev at blackboxvoting dot org