Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Iraq and the law

In "Iraq legislators seek to fine-tune a bill" (Los Angeles Times), Alexandra Zavis reports that, unlike the US Congress, the Iraqi Parliament is postponing the summer vaction. Zavis reports that this is said to be in response to the allegedly upcoming provinical elections and the failure to pass the legislation that the US White House wants. For those thinking back to last summer, the Iraqi Parliament was under criticism last year for taking a summer break. They ended up taking one resulting in some harsh criticism from inside the US. Repeating, the US Congress took their break last summer and are due to take their summer break this year.

In the New York Times this morning, Sabrina Tavernise files the only Iraq report. It's entitled "U.S. Agrees to Lift Immunity for Contractors in Iraq" and Hoshyar Zebari (Iraq's Foreign Minister) states that immunity for contractors has been lifted but what it really indicates is that the Iraqi government needs to get some attorneys to look over what is being negotiated. For example, there's a sense of "We get control of our air space!" but do they? From the article:

Mahmoud Othman, a Kurdish member of Parliament, said the concession was simply part of political maneuvering. Iraq does not have a full-fledged air force and lacks the equipment and expertise to take control of air traffic over the country. As a result, he said, the United States would "keep control even if it was handed to Iraqis."

On Democracy Now! this morning, you get the latest in "blackface," "Korean face." A program that has such a sorry record on Asian-American issues has no reason to parade that insulting clip of Anna Deavere Smith (Hazel from All My Children) doing a stereotypical turn as a Korean-American. Not since Jerry Lewis' early sixties work have you seen anything so insulting and degrading. Amy Goodman, of course, is delighted with it. She also presents 'peace' man Joseph Cirincione who is not a person of peace. But you'll grasp that as he ranks priorities on air and also insists of nuclear energy, "It's not the reactor you're worried about . . ." Did you miss Three Mile Island. He's another Barack groupie on the fringes of the campaign and if you waste your time with Amy Goodman's WORTHLESS CRAP this morning, you'll grasp that quickly.

There is actual news in the world (check out first item in next entry) and Goody could haul her tired ass to Canada at any point but it's not about news, it's about promoting Barack Obama. Every day. That's who she's selling it for. Less and less are buying, thankfully, decreasing the risk of a social disease turning into an epidemic.

Joan notes Derrick DePledge's "Nader outlines issues prior to rally at UH" (Honolulu Advertiser):

Consumer advocate Ralph Nader has identified a dozen issues, from single-payer health insurance to cutting the military budget to repealing anti-union laws, that distinguish him from the two major party candidates for president.
But the one that separates him most, and that has defined his activism for much of his life, is corporate influence on politics and government.
"The central issue in our country is the overwhelming power of global corporations, on our government, on our elections, and on our economy," Nader said yesterday in a telephone interview from Washington, D.C. "Commercialism is running riot over civic values that represent the heart and core of a civilization."
The consumer advocate and attorney will bring his independent presidential campaign to the Islands tomorrow night for a rally at the University of Hawai'i-Manoa. Nader -- the second presidential candidate to campaign here this election cycle, after U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, dropped by last September -- is dismissive of the way major party candidates have traditionally bypassed Hawai'i and Alaska.

And should be. The Dems had to rally at the last minute in 2004 in Hawaii because they took the state for granted. We covered this in November of 2004. Joan lives in Hawaii.

Nader is in Hawaii for the Thursday Nader for President Rally at the University of Hawaii's Art Building Auditorium which starts at 8:00 p.m. ($10 for admission, $5 for students).

Brandon notes this video from the Nader campaign's YouTube page:

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