Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Identified as a trouble maker by the authorities since childhood, and resolved to live up to the description, Charles Carreon soon discovered that mischief is most effectively fomented through speech. Having mastered the art of flinging verbal pipe-bombs and molotov cocktails at an early age, he refined his skills by writing legal briefs and journalistic exposes, while developing a poetic style that meandered from the lyrical to the political. Journey with him into the dark caves of the human experience, illuminated by the torch of an outraged sense of injustice.

Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 6:55 am


5:20 pm, July 12, 2005

Well, there's one thing suspicious about this Valerie Plame imbroglio — Karl Rove “remained mum yesterday” according to the Wall Street Journal's 7/11/05 article entitled Democrats Step Up Attacks on Rove After Time Email. With Rove not talking, the fat is definitively in the fire as of now.


The amplified Democratic attacks suggest that the White House and Mr. Rove will face turbulence in the days ahead whatever the outcome of Mr. Fitzgerald's criminal probe. Under a 1982 law, it is illegal to knowingly expose an active-duty CIA covert agent, and federal prosecutors have been investigating. It isn't clear whether or not Ms. Plame was an active-duty CIA operative at the time her identity was reported in Mr. Novak's column and in Time magazine.

Deflecting attention from Rove's impending emergence in the role of post-9/11 Benedict Arnold, all the self-serving media handwringing is about how the Supreme Court turned its back on ”freedom of the press."


That discomfort continues to ripple through the news media as well. One journalist who reported but didn't write a story on the matter, Judith Miller of the New York Times, has gone to jail rather than disclose her sources, while Time magazine and Mr. Cooper ultimately decided to cooperate. Facing a federal judge's deadline to testify, Time turned over Mr. Cooper's notes. The reporter himself then agreed to testify after saying his source had released him to do so. Mr. Luskin has said Mr. Rove was the source in question.

Time Inc. Editor in Chief Norman Pearlstine sought to assuage dissatisfaction about the magazine's actions at Time's Washington bureau yesterday. A roomful of editors and reporters expressed anger and concern for two hours, according to people who attended the meeting.

Mr. Pearlstine told the staff that he had made an error in emphasizing that Time was ”not above the law,“ and thus had turned over Mr. Cooper's notes to the grand jury, a person at the meeting said. Mr. Pearlstine explained that under a different set of circumstances, the magazine might not have complied with the court order but that the circumstances in this case warranted that approach, the person said. Jim Kelly, managing editor of Time magazine, also was at the meeting and confirmed the account.

Having coughed up the emails, rather than pay a per-day contempt fine, Pearlstein is now backpedalling from his original act of contrition. ”Not above the law“ was wrong. Okay, thanks for letting us know you have no sense of citizenship. The media is a kingdom apart, the place where opinions are made, free from scrutiny.

This purported freedom of the press is simply the right to feed people garbage, even criminal garbage — information that the public insists it has no right to know — the identity of a Secret CIA Agent Specializing in Weapons of Mass Destruction. Exposure of Valerie Plame resulted in execution of many of her sources, according to sources you can find easily on the Net. This freedom to keep sources secret, even when the source is the propaganda minister, on an official propaganda errand, is bunk. Freedom of the press is the right to print any goddamn thing you want, not the freedom to destroy a woman's career, bring death and torture to her sources, and conceal the identity of a criminal wrongdoer. Obviously, the fact that Rove is the criminal complicates the matter. Will they appoint a Special Prosecutor?

How do we cut this gordian knot? Simple. Change a variable and solve the problem using that variable. Assume that Rove disclosed the information not to a reporter but directly to an agent of a foreign nation, say Pakistan. Say Rove called Musharraf directly and told him, ”Just so you know, my friend, Ms. Plame is with The Company." Now that would be a crime, and Musharraf couldn't claim the right to keep the identity secret if he were served with a Grand Jury Subpoena signed by Alberto Gonzales while in Washington D.C. So why should telling it to a reporter, who will then tell not only Musharraf, but also the entire gang of nuclear proliferators, make any difference?

Rove has earned himself a place in the Hall of Infamy. But don't wait on his pal Al to figure it out. He's already there.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 6:56 am


7:54 pm, July 21, 2005


Summary: After a confrontation with a knife-wielding teenager in Ashland, Oregon failed to result in a citizen shooting, a group of disgruntled police officers in the small department began complaining that the teenager should have been “drilled,” but that because of Police Chief Mike Bianca's policies, they were unable to shoot the apparently intoxicated boy. In a reversal of the usual scenario, the townspeople of Ashland have rallied around their Chief of Police, who was an Ashland Police officer for years before getting the top-cop spot in the postcard-perfect town famous for its Shakespeare festival and low crime rate.

Usually, cops rally behind a beleaguered Chief of Police when citizens come calling for his head. In the town of Ashland, Oregon, known for its Shakespeare Festival, park-like atmosphere and low crime rate, a different type of drama is unfolding.

After the confrontation with the young man Last month was defused, Chief Mike Bianca, who was appointed Chief last year after years as a patrol officer on the Ashland Police Department, found himself accused by his own officers of being too soft, and limiting their use of deadly force to the point where it endangered officer safety. Ashland Patrol Officer Teresa Selby, a diminutive blonde, commented to the local press that, but for the nearby presence of bystanders, she would have “drilled” the uncooperative young man.

Selby's comments, and those of two other Ashland police officers who claimed Chief Bianca's tactics put them in danger, struck a nerve in this sedate town, where the streets are lined with souvenir, bead and jewelry shops, and average incomes and home values far exceed the Oregon norm. Last week, a rally in support of Chief Bianca drew hundreds, and today, the Mayor of Ashland came out in the Chief's favor.

Local sources say that the complaining officers are now thinking better of their actions. “They started something and now they can't finish it. They'll be lucky to get out with their jobs.” said a local political observer who preferred to remain anonymous.

Meanwhile, Ashland activists supporting Chief Bianca have announced another rally for July 29th at 3 p.m. at the entrance to Lithia Park, promising to march to City Hall and the police station on a campaign to “Clean up the Ashland Police Department.” The activists, adopting an appropriately theatrical touch for a town full of actors and artists, plan to march with brooms and other cleaning implements, are circulating flyers throughout the little town and anticipate a large turnout.

Despite the humorous approach, at least some Bianca supporters say they're deadly serious about removing the cops who mounted the mutiny. Charles Carreon, a former Deputy District Attorney in Jackson County who worked with the Ashland Police Department during his years as a prosecutor, supports Bianca and is helping to organize the march. When asked why he planned to march, he stated: “Mike is the best Police Chief this City ever had. He understands his community and they appreciate him. It looks like these other cops chose the wrong guy to pick on.”
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 6:58 am


9:47 pm, July 22, 2005

Emerson said, “Things are in the saddle, and ride mankind.” Never truer that when you have a computer riding herd on your heart. Pacemakers, also known as implanted defibrillators, have until now presumably been dangerous only in the vicinity of those ubiquitous hotdog-heaters and popcorn-poppers known as microwave ovens. Who would have suspected that the very same microwave could broadcast a TV signal, ruin a meal, or kill a retiree, depending on how you aimed it?

Well, revolt of the machines it may not be, but these Guidant pacemakers apparently on occasion get all cranked up and pace you right into the grave, or do other funny things. The origin of the defect — crappy sealer that lets moisture into the computer. Wish you'd told me that before you stuck it in my chest, Doc.

Here's what the NYT says:

July 19, 2005
Pacemakers by Guidant Have Flaw

The Guidant Corporation, already embroiled in controversy over recalls of heart devices, alerted doctors yesterday that nine of its older pacemaker models were prone to failing. Some patients might need to have the units replaced, the company said.

The alert covers 28,000 pacemakers made from November 1997 to October 2000 and still implanted in patients. Guidant said that a component used to seal the pacemakers could degrade, allowing moisture to build up and causing the devices to fail. Such failure could cause “serious health complications” in some patients, the company said. The flaw may have contributed to one patient's death, though that is not clear.

The pacemaker alert follows Guidant's recalls in recent weeks of tens of thousands of implantable heart defibrillators. Guidant's long delays in notifying doctors about problems with some of those devices have thrown a spotlight on the issue of when and how device makers alert physicians and patients to product flaws. It has also raised questions about how the Food and Drug Administration discloses safety data it collects about medical devices.

Late yesterday, Senator Charles E. Grassley, Republican of Iowa and chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, signaled his interest in reviewing issues surrounding the recent Guidant recalls.

In a letter to the F.D.A. commissioner, Dr. Lester M. Crawford, Mr. Grassley requested that the agency provide him with five years of annual reports filed by Guidant for the defibrillators and pacemakers that were the subject of recent company alerts or recalls. The Senate Finance Committee has previously investigated the agency's handling of several drugs, including Vioxx.

In his letter, Senator Grassley also asked agency officials to explain why they did not routinely make public such reports, which are filed annually by heart device makers for each defibrillator and pacemaker they make. An article last month in The New York Times highlighted how those annual reports contain far more detailed product-safety and performance data about heart devices than companies routinely provide to doctors. However, the F.D.A. treats the reports as confidential.

In its alert yesterday, Guidant said that doctors should consider replacing the affected pacemakers in patients who depend on the device for survival or to prevent serious health consequences. That category roughly ranges from 20 percent to 40 percent of pacemaker patients, two doctors said.

Because of their age, most of the pacemakers at issue will need to be replaced soon anyway, since their batteries are nearly drained. The company said that it would pay for the replacements.

While both pacemakers and defibrillators are implanted under the skin, they serve different purposes. A pacemaker regulates a heart that is beating too fast or too slowly. A defibrillator emits an electrical shock intended to interrupt a chaotic and deadly type of heart rhythm.

Guidant's recent spate of recalls, including the one announced yesterday, is likely to play a role in discussions of second-quarter earnings results due this week from both Guidant and Johnson & Johnson, which agreed in December to buy Guidant for $25.4 billion.

Today, Wall Street analysts are expected to ask Johnson & Johnson executives, when they discuss the company's earnings, if Guidant's recent problems might affect the timing or price of Johnson & Johnson's planned acquisition.

Asked for comment yesterday, a spokesman for Johnson & Johnson, which is based in New Brunswick, N.J., referred to a statement made in mid-June in which the company said it would close the Guidant deal this quarter, though it added that it viewed Guidant's product problems as “serious matters.”

The deal is valued at $76 a share to Guidant holders. But in recent weeks, the value of Guidant's stock has fluctuated sharply as investors have speculated on whether the deal's price will be revised. Yesterday, Guidant shares fell $2.10 to close at $67.31 a share, down 3 percent.

On Thursday, Guidant is set to announce second-quarter results. Those results will provide the first look at whether the company has suffered financial damage as a result of its recent recalls.

Analysts are split about how the steady beat of bad news from Guidant will affect its market share in the long term.

Guidant has been under scrutiny since late May when it was disclosed that the company failed to notify doctors for three years that an electrical defect in one defibrillator model could cause it to short-circuit when needed to save a patient's life. The company continued to sell units with the potential electrical flaw even after it began producing improved versions of the same model in which the problem had been fixed.

The F.D.A. is investigating how Guidant handled reviews of its products' dangers. Since late May, the company has issued alerts or recalled 11 models of defibrillators.

Yesterday, an F.D.A. spokeswoman said the agency was aware that Guidant had issued the pacemaker alert to doctors and that it was evaluating the matter. Guidant said it expected the F.D.A. to designate the alert as a recall, a formal classification that involves the type of physician notification that Guidant is already making.

A recall does not mean that a device should be removed. Instead, patients are typically advised to discuss with their doctors the risk posed by a device compared with the risk posed by the surgical procedure needed to replace it.

Several doctors said yesterday that they would probably recommend that pacemaker-dependent patients have the units replaced.

“To me, that is the conservative move,” said Dr. Eric N. Prystowsky, a heart specialist in Indianapolis who is also a medical adviser to Guidant. Nine older pacemaker models are involved. They are the Pulsar Max, the Pulsar, the Discovery, the Meridian, the Pulsar Max II, the Discovery II, the Virtus Plus II, the Intellis II and the Contak TR. The company said that the units, which are of an earlier design, have not been implanted for the last four years.

Guidant said it had identified 69 devices that may have had the seal problem, out of some 78,000 devices in which that component was used. Currently, about 28,000 of those units are still implanted in patients, with 18,000 of them in the United States.

In 20 known cases, the problem caused pacemakers to fail, and in 5 such instances, patients blacked out, apparently because of inadequate blood flow. In two other instances, the flaw may have caused a pacemaker to keep pacing at a high rate.

In one such case, that flaw may have contributed to a patient's death. However, because the unit was not returned to Guidant for inspection, the company said it was not clear if the death was related to the device or to the patient's health problems.

Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:00 am


10:33 pm, July 22, 2005

That's the good news for Cyrus Kar, “an aspiring filmmaker from Los Angeles ... freed Sunday in Baghdad ... after more than seven weeks in solitary confinement in a military prison in Iraq.” The bad news, though, “American officials told him [was] that his United States passport had been destroyed in the course of an effort to test its authenticity ... and ... he might have to wait a week before a new one could be issued.”

Kar, who was born in Iran, is a naturalized US citizen and former US Navy man who went to Iraq to shoot a film about his famous Persian namesake, Cyrus the Great. Unfortunately, he and his cameraman were in a cab that was stopped at a checkpoint, and in the trunk of which were found 35 washing machine timers, and, needless to say, no other washing machine parts. Obviously the timers were destined for use to trigger delayed detonation of improvised explosive devices. In Iraq, when your clothes are dry, everybody hears about it.

Wrong place, wrong time to make a movie. Kar spent his seven weeks in a 5-by-7 foot cell, down the hall from two famous captives: Tariq Aziz, Saddam's former main man, and one of Saddam's brothers. But for the efforts of his family, who are smart and well-connected (see San Jose Mercury article below), he'd still be there.

The military claims Kar has been released, but I'm sure he'll be withholding judgment until he is back in his own home, drinking a cold brew. War makes fools of everyone.

In Iraq war, justice for the savvy, not all.
By Scott Herhold
Mercury News

It took serendipity for Cyrus Kar's sister to learn that the aspiring filmmaker was being held in Iraq by American forces. But it was no accident when he was released. That took a push on the levers of power.

A week after the 44-year-old San Jose State University graduate was booked into a detention camp near Baghdad, a Red Cross worker called Kar's sister, Anna, who happened to work for the Red Cross in Nairobi, Kenya.

The colleague told Anna that he had just seen her brother in Iraq. ``I said, `Oh, great, what a coincidence that you met him over there,'' Anna Kar told the New York Times.

The colleague straightened her out. He hadn't just bumped into Kar, a Navy veteran who had gone to Iraq to film a documentary. The Red Cross worker had visited Kar officially at Camp Cropper, an American military jail.

That news — and a call from Kar himself to his aunt in Los Angeles the same day — launched the family on a six-week quest to free the filmmaker from the suspicions of American military authorities.

They succeeded last weekend, when Kar and his cameraman were released. But his saga reveals two truths about our Iraq misadventure.

Bureaucratic war

First, we have more to fear from bureaucracy than from outright cruelty by American forces. Second, justice in the war on terror often depends on who is the most savvy.

``The lesson here is he had a family who knew what do to and they called us to get involved,'' said Mark Rosenbaum, the executive director of the ACLU Southern California Chapter, which filed suit to free Kar. ``He was very fortunate.''

Born in Tehran but raised in Washington state, Kar got a degree in marketing at San Jose State while moonlighting as a bartender. For much of the '90s, he worked in the valley's electronics industry.

After the collapse of the boom, he moved to Los Angeles and pursued a long-cherished project: a film on Cyrus the Great, an early Persian ruler known for his progressiveness.

``His goal of making the documentary was his full-time job,'' said his cousin Shahrzad Folger in a court declaration.

That passion led Kar this May to Iraq, where he hoped to film archeological sites at Babylon, an ancient city that Cyrus conquered in 538 BC. On his first day in Iraq, May 17, Kar and his cameraman climbed into the wrong taxi. It was stopped by Iraqi authorities, who found several washing machine timers in the trunk. The timers are commonly used in bombs.

FBI investigation

Kar and his cameraman protested that they knew nothing about the timers, that they were merely passengers. To no avail. They were both put in jail. And the FBI launched an investigation of the filmmaker, searching his Los Angeles apartment and seizing his personal computer.

His family knew nothing of this until a week later, when Kar called his aunt and the Red Cross worker called Nairobi. In some ways, the real story is how they responded.

Kar's cousin Folger, a University of Southern California graduate, took control of the effort. She called Sen. Barbara Boxer's office and the Navy. She called the State Department. She even tried a New York number for the U.S. Embassy in Iraq. All without much result.

An FBI investigator assured the family in mid-June that Kar had been cleared, passing a lie detector test. But when he still wasn't released, Folger contacted the ACLU.

And it was through a habeas corpus lawsuit — literally, produce the body — that the case got attention. When the story ran on the front page of the New York Times last week, you had the sense that the family had touched the real levers of power. Kar was released not long afterward.

Kar told reporters that although he nothing against U.S. forces, he had been treated as a ``mushroom'' — thrown into a dark spot, fed garbage, forgotten by the bureaucracy. His family knew enough to call the right people. But what about folks who aren't as savvy?
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:05 am

ROVE RUNS BEHIND BUSH, by Charles Carreon

1:53 am, July 23, 2005

During the last few weeks, we've discovered a new Karl Rove. Smiling, silent, and submissive, moving in Bush's wind-shadow, apparently the only safe place for him in the media universe. Scott McLellan exceeded all previous standards as an affable stonewaller on July 11th, when this press briefing came down. Logic is clearly not the first weapon of the publicity man, nor does it much seem to aid the reporters attempting to wield it.

Q Does the President stand by his pledge to fire anyone involved in the leak of a name of a CIA operative?

MR. McCLELLAN: Terry, I appreciate your question. I think your question is being asked relating to some reports that are in reference to an ongoing criminal investigation. The criminal investigation that you reference is something that continues at this point. And as I've previously stated, while that investigation is ongoing, the White House is not going to comment on it. The President directed the White House to cooperate fully with the investigation, and as part of cooperating fully with the investigation, we made a decision that we weren't going to comment on it while it is ongoing.

Q Excuse me, but I wasn't actually talking about any investigation. But in June of 2004, the President said that he would fire anybody who was involved in this leak, to press of information. And I just want to know, is that still his position?

MR. McCLELLAN: Yes, but this question is coming up in the context of this ongoing investigation, and that's why I said that our policy continues to be that we're not going to get into commenting on an ongoing criminal investigation from this podium. The prosecutors overseeing the investigation had expressed a preference to us that one way to help the investigation is not to be commenting on it from this podium. And so that's why we are not going to get into commenting on it while it is an ongoing investigation, or questions related to it.

Q Scott, if I could — if I could point out, contradictory to that statement, on September 29th, 2003, while the investigation was ongoing, you clearly commented on it. You were the first one who said, if anybody from the White House was involved, they would be fired. And then on June 10th of 2004, at Sea Island Plantation, in the midst of this investigation is when the President made his comment that, yes, he would fire anybody from the White House who was involved. So why have you commented on this during the process of the investigation in the past, but now you've suddenly drawn a curtain around it under the statement of, “We're not going to comment on an ongoing investigation”?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, John, I appreciate the question. I know you want to get to the bottom of this. No one wants to get to the bottom of it more than the President of the United States. And I think the way to be most helpful is to not get into commenting on it while it is an ongoing investigation. That's something that the people overseeing the investigation have expressed a preference that we follow. And that's why we're continuing to follow that approach and that policy.

Now, I remember very well what was previously said. And at some point, I will be glad to talk about it, but not until after the investigation is complete.

Q. So could I just ask, when did you change your mind to say that it was okay to comment during the course of an investigation before, but now it's not?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, I think maybe you missed what I was saying in reference to Terry's question at the beginning. There came a point when the investigation got underway when those overseeing the investigation asked that it would be their — or said that it would be their preference that we not get into discussing it while it is ongoing. I think that's the way to be most helpful to help them advance the investigation and get to the bottom of it.

Q Scott, can I ask you this; did Karl Rove commit a crime?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, David, this is a question relating to an ongoing investigation, and you have my response related to the investigation. And I don't think you should read anything into it other than we're going to continue not to comment on it while it's ongoing.

Q Do you stand by your statement from the fall of 2003 when you were asked specifically about Karl and Elliott Abrams and Scooter Libby, and you said, “I've gone to each of those gentlemen, and they have told me they are not involved in this” — do you stand by that statement?

MR. McCLELLAN: And if you will recall, I said that as part of helping the investigators move forward on the investigation we're not going to get into commenting on it. That was something I stated back near that time, as well.

Q Scott, I mean, just — I mean, this is ridiculous. The notion that you're going to stand before us after having commented with that level of detail and tell people watching this that somehow you decided not to talk. You've got a public record out there. Do you stand by your remarks from that podium, or not?

MR. McCLELLAN: And again, David, I'm well aware, like you, of what was previously said, and I will be glad to talk about it at the appropriate time. The appropriate time is when the investigation —

Q Why are you choosing when it's appropriate and when it's inappropriate?

MR. McCLELLAN: If you'll let me finish —

Q No, you're not finishing — you're not saying anything. You stood at that podium and said that Karl Rove was not involved. And now we find out that he spoke out about Joseph Wilson's wife. So don't you owe the American public a fuller explanation? Was he involved, or was he not? Because, contrary to what you told the American people, he did, indeed, talk about his wife, didn't he?

MR. McCLELLAN: David, there will be a time to talk about this, but now is not the time to talk about it.

Q Do you think people will accept that, what you're saying today?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, I've responded to the question.

Go ahead, Terry.

Q Well, you're in a bad spot here, Scott, because after the investigation began, after the criminal investigation was underway, you said — October 10th, 2003, “I spoke with those individuals, Rove, Abrams and Libby, as I pointed out, those individuals assured me they were not involved in this.” From that podium. That's after the criminal investigation began. Now that Rove has essentially been caught red-handed peddling this information, all of a sudden you have respect for the sanctity of the criminal investigation?

MR. McCLELLAN: No, that's not a correct characterization Terry, and I think you are well aware of that. We know each other very well, and it was after that period that the investigators had requested that we not get into commenting on an ongoing criminal investigation. And we want to be helpful so that they can get to the bottom of this, because no one wants to get to the bottom of it more than the President of the United States. I am well aware of what was said previously. I remember well what was said previously. And at some point, I look forward to talking about it. But until the investigation is complete, I'm just not going to do that.

Q Do you recall when you were asked —

Q Wait, wait — so you're now saying that after you cleared Rove and the others from that podium, then the prosecutors asked you not to speak anymore, and since then, you haven't?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, you're continuing to ask questions relating to an ongoing criminal investigation, and I'm just not going to respond any further.

Q When did they ask you to stop commenting on it, Scott? Can you peg down a date?

MR. McCLELLAN: Back at that time period.

Q Well, then the President commented on it nine months later. So was he not following the White House plan?

MR. McCLELLAN: John, I appreciate your questions. You can keep asking them, but you have my response.

Go ahead, Dave.

Q We are going to keep asking them. When did the President learn that Karl Rove had had a conversation with the President — with a news reporter about the involvement of Joseph Wilson's wife and the decision to send —

MR. McCLELLAN: I've responded to the questions.

Q When did the President learn that Karl Rove had —

MR. McCLELLAN: I've responded to the questions, Dick.

Go ahead.

Q After the investigation is completed, will you then be consistent with your word and the President's word that anybody who was involved would be let go?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, after the investigation is complete, I will be glad to talk about it at that point.

Q And a follow-up. Can you walk us through why, given the fact that Rove's lawyer has spoken publicly about this, it is inconsistent with the investigation, that it compromises the investigation to talk about the involvement of Karl Rove, the Deputy Chief of Staff?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, those overseeing the investigation expressed a preference to us that we not get into commenting on the investigation while it's ongoing. And that was what they requested of the White House. And so I think in order to be helpful to that investigation, we are following their direction.

Q. Scott, there's a difference between commenting on an investigation and taking an action —

MR. McCLELLAN: Go ahead, Goyal.

Q. Can I finish, please?

MR. McCLELLAN: You can come — I'll come back to you in a minute. Go ahead, Goyal.

Q. Scott, today also the President spoke about the war on terrorism and also, according to — report, there was bombings in London and also bombings in India, and at both places, al Qaeda was involved. According to the India report and press reports, a Pakistani television said that Osama bin Laden is there alive and they have spoken with him, and his group is still — as far as terrorism around the globe is concerned. So now the major bombings after 9/11 took place in London, and more are about to come, according to al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden. They are still — and again, the President is doing a great job as far as fighting against terrorism is concerned. But where do we stand now, really? Where do we go from London, as far as terrorism is concerned? How far we can go after Osama bin Laden now to catch him? Because he's still in Pakistan.

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, what occurred in London is a grim reminder that we are at war on terrorism. We are waging a comprehensive war on terrorism. You heard the President talk earlier today to the FBI personnel and others who are at Quantico, and the President talked about our global war on terrorism. He talked about our strategy for taking the fight to the enemy, staying on the offensive, and working to spread freedom and democracy to defeat the ideology of hatred that terrorists espouse.

And the President pointed back to the 20th century. He pointed out that in World War II, freedom prevailed over fascism and Nazism. And in the Cold War, freedom prevailed over communism. Freedom is a powerful force for defeating an ideology such as the one that the terrorists espouse. And that's why it's so important to continue working to advance freedom and democracy in the broader Middle East. And that's what we will continue to do. And the President also talked about the great progress we've made at home to protect the home front.

The families and friends of those who lost their lives in London are — continue to be in our thoughts and prayers. We know what it's like to be attacked on our soil. And that's why the President made a decision that we were going to take the fight to the enemy to try to disrupt plots and prevent attacks from happening in the first place. And that's exactly what we are doing. But we're also going to work with the free world to support the advance of freedom and democracy in a dangerous region of the world. For too long we ignored what was going on in the Middle East. We accepted and tolerated dictatorships in exchange for peace and stability, and we got neither. As the President said, free nations are peaceful societies. And that's why it's so important that we continue to support the advance of freedom, because that's how you ultimately defeat the ideology of hatred and oppression that terrorists espouse.

Carl, go ahead. I'll come to you, David, in a second.

Q. Does the President continue to have confidence in Mr. Rove?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, these are all questions coming up in the context of an ongoing criminal investigation. And you've heard my response on this.

Q. So you're not going to respond as to whether or not the President has confidence in his Deputy Chief of Staff?

MR. McCLELLAN: Carl, you're asking this question in the context of an ongoing investigation. And I would not read anything into it other than I'm simply not going to comment on an ongoing —

Q. Has there been — has there been any change —

MR. McCLELLAN: — investigation.

Q. Has there been any change or is there a plan for Mr. Rove's portfolio to be altered in any way?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, you have my response to these questions.

Go ahead. Sarah, go ahead.

Q. A secret British memo says plans are underway for a significant troop withdrawal from Iraq early next year. Does the President agree with those plans? And even though he doesn't want to give an exact date —

MR. McCLELLAN: Who? Who has a plan? I'm sorry.

Q. With the plans of the — a secret British memo says plans are underway for a significant troop withdrawal from Iraq early next year. Does the President agree with those plans, even though he doesn't want to give an exit date? Is there White House and Pentagon pressure to draw down U.S. troop levels in Iraq as soon as possible?

MR. McCLELLAN: I think you're referring to reports of a British memo talking about reduction in troop forces. First of all, the military always plans for all contingencies. And that's something our military is always looking at — what are the various contingencies, and how do we meet our commitments and complete the mission. The President has made it clear that we are going to complete the mission, and then our troops will return home with the honor that they deserve.

We always look to — the President always looks to his commanders on the ground to make assessments in terms of what troops levels are needed, and the commanders on the ground will have the troops that they need to complete the mission. But the commanders have said that that will be based on the conditions on the ground, it will be based on circumstances on the ground, so you're always looking at the circumstances on the ground.

Now, one part of our strategy for victory in Iraq is to train and equip the Iraqi security forces. As we stand up the Iraqi forces, we will stand down coalition and American forces. And the President talked about that again today. That's part of our two-track strategy for succeeding in Iraq. And what you're seeing now is that the number of Iraqi forces that are trained and equipped continues to go up. They are the largest contingent providing for security in Iraq. And we continue to expand those forces. But not only are we expanding the numbers, we're strengthening their capability. And the commanders have talked about that, as well. So there's good progress being made there. The President referenced some of that in his remarks today.

Now I'll go back to David. Go ahead.

Q. There's a difference between commenting publicly on an action and taking action in response to it. Newsweek put out a story, an email saying that Karl Rove passed national security information on to a reporter that outed a CIA officer. Now, are you saying that the President is not taking any action in response to that? Because I presume that the prosecutor did not ask you not to take action, and that if he did, you still would not necessarily abide by that; that the President is free to respond to news reports, regardless of whether there's an investigation or not. So are you saying that he's not going to do anything about this until the investigation is fully over and done with?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, I think the President has previously spoken to this. This continues to be an ongoing criminal investigation. No one wants to get to the bottom of it more than the President of the United States. And we're just not going to have more to say on it until that investigation is complete.

Q. But you acknowledge that he is free, as President of the United States, to take whatever action he wants to in response to a credible report that a member of his staff leaked information. He is free to take action if he wants to.

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, you're asking questions relating to an ongoing investigation, and I think I've responded to it.

Q. Scott, since President William Howard Taft became Chief Justice after his presidency, you would not rule out the President nominating former law school professor Bill Clinton to the Supreme Court, would you? And if you wouldn't, we can report that President Clinton is under consideration, can't we?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, that's the first time I've heard that name suggested. I know there are a lot of names being suggested out there, and you know that I'm not going to get into speculating about any particular names.

Q. One follow-up. Considering the widespread interest and the absolutely frantic Democrat reaction to Karl Rove's excellent speech to conservatives last month, does the President hope that Karl will give a lot more speeches?

MR. McCLELLAN: He continues to give speeches. He was traveling this weekend talking about the importance of strengthening Social Security. And he has continued to go out and give speeches.

Let me back up, though. You brought up the Supreme Court, and I would like to update you, in terms of where we are in terms of consultations with the Senate, because the White House consultations have been wide and deep with the United States Senate. I think you heard Senator Hatch yesterday talk about how, in his 29 years in the United States Senate, he has not seen anything like this when it comes to the level of consultation that is going on. It is unprecedented, in his words, and he's certainly been around the Senate for a long time to see the type of consultations that go on.

But we have reached out to more than 60 senators now, and we have actually consulted with most of those. We are continuing those outreach calls and meetings to listen to what senators have to say and hear what their views are. The President —

Q. Did you try to reach all the senators?

MR. McCLELLAN: The President has reached out, himself. The President looks forward to meeting tomorrow with four distinguished leaders in the Senate. He will be listening to what their views are. The President is not prejudging anything. He wants to hear what their views are and hear what they have to say as we move forward on a Supreme Court nominee. The President —

Q. Does he want to hear names, Scott?

MR. McCLELLAN: The President welcomes people suggesting names. That's part of the consultation process. But not only are we going to consult before the nomination is made, but we'll continue to consult once the nomination is made.

We've also consulted with more than half of the Democratic conference in the United States Senate. We've spoken with every member of the Senate Judiciary Committee. And we are continuing that outreach as we speak. A number of White House staffers have been reaching out to individual members, and the President is going to be sitting down and meeting with those four leaders tomorrow.

Q. What does he think of Specter — what does he think of Specter suggesting O'Connor as Chief?

MR. McCLELLAN: Look, Les, there are going to be a lot of suggestions made. I'm just not going to get into speculating about potential nominees. The President takes this responsibility very seriously. And that's why he is going through a deliberate and thorough process. That's why he has instructed us to reach out to senators and get their views and hear what they have to say about a potential nominee.

The President hopes that we can move forward in a dignified and civilized way. You heard him express that. It's important to elevate the discourse as we move forward. The American people want this nomination process to be something that we can all be proud of. And the President is going to select the nominee who meets the criteria that he outlined — that is someone of high intellect, someone of integrity, someone who — someone of great legal ability and someone who will faithfully interpret our Constitution and our laws and not try to make law from the bench.

Q. Will the President discuss his names with Democrats, as well, and get their thoughts on those names?

MR. McCLELLAN: Go ahead, April. Go ahead.

Q. Scott, what was the President's interaction today with Karl Rove? Did they discuss this current situation? And understanding that Karl Rove was the architect of the President's win for the second term in the Oval Office, how important is Karl Rove to this administration currently?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, this is coming at it from —

Q. It has nothing to do with what you just said.

MR. McCLELLAN: This is still coming at the same question relating to reports about an ongoing investigation, and I think I've responded to it.

Q. Who is Karl Rove as it relates to this administration?

MR. McCLELLAN: Do you have questions on another topic?

Q. No, no, no, no. Who is Karl Rove as it relates to this current administration?

MR. McCLELLAN: I appreciate the question, April. I think I've responded.

Go ahead, Connie.

Q. Is the President going to make any outreach to conservative groups on the Supreme Court nominee and listen to their point of view at all?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, we are listening to what others have to say, not only in the United States Senate, but outside, as well. And there are a lot of people expressing their views right now.

Q. — seemed to get annoyed last week —

MR. McCLELLAN: I wouldn't try to label anything.

Go ahead.

Q. Scott, I think you're barrage today in part because we — it is now clear that 21 months ago, you were up at this podium saying something that we now know to be demonstratively false. Now, are you concerned that in not setting the record straight today that this could undermine the credibility of the other things you say from the podium?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, I'm going to be happy to talk about this at the appropriate time. Dana, you all — you and everybody in this room, or most people in this room, I should say, know me very well and they know the type of person that I am. And I'm confident in our relationship that we have. But I will be glad to talk about this at the appropriate time, and that's once the investigation is complete. I'm not going to get into commenting based on reports or anything of that nature.

Q. Scott, at this point, are we to consider what you've said previously, when you were talking about this, that you're still standing by that, or are those all inoperative at this point?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, you're still trying to come at this from a different angle, and I've responded to it.

Q. Are you standing by what you said previously?

MR. McCLELLAN: You've heard my response.

Go ahead.

Q. The six-party talks are finally to be resumed on July 27th. The United States policy has been to demand complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantlement of nuclear weapon by the North Korea to ensure nuclear-free Korean Peninsula. If North Korea does not agree to that, what would happen to the six-party talks?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, first of all, we are pleased that North Korea is coming back to the talks. The five parties put a proposal on the table, and we believe it's now time to make progress on what we outlined. It's important for North Korea to return to the talks prepared to talk in a serious way about how to move forward on that proposal. The goal is not for North Korea to come back to the talks; the goal is a denuclearized peninsula. That's a goal that we all share. And we need to make progress toward that goal. That's why it's important that when North Korea comes back, that they are prepared to respond to the proposal and move forward in a serious way to make progress toward that goal.

In the discussions recently with North Korea, they have expressed a commitment to a denuclearized peninsula and making progress toward that goal. These meetings or this upcoming six-party talks is a way to move forward toward that goal. And we want to move forward in a serious way.

Q. It is reported the United States would offer some new incentives to the North Korea. Would you tell us, what is the contents of new —

MR. McCLELLAN: I think any such impression is wrong. We have put a proposal on the table along with the other four parties in the talks. That is a proposal that was — it's a serious proposal. It was put on the table by the five parties for North Korea to consider and respond to. Now North Korea is committed to coming back to the talks with a date certain. And when they come back later this month, we want them to be prepared to talk in a serious way about how to move forward on that proposal. That's the proposal that is on the table. It was a proposal that was outlined to North Korea in the last round of talks over a year ago by the other five parties.

Go ahead, Alexis.

Q. When the leak investigation is concluded, does the President believe it might be important for his credibility, the credibility of the White House, to release all the information voluntarily that was submitted as part of the investigation, so the American public could see what the — what transpired inside the White House at the time?

MR. McCLELLAN: This is an investigation being overseen by a special prosecutor. And I think those are questions best directed to the special prosecutor. Again, this is an ongoing matter; I'm just not going to get into commenting on it further at this time. At the appropriate time, when it's complete, then I'll be glad to talk about it at that point.

Q. Have you in the White House considered whether that would be optimum to release as much information and make it as open a process —

MR. McCLELLAN: It's the same type of question. You're asking me to comment on an ongoing investigation, and I'm not going to do that.

Q. I'm actually talking about the communication strategy, which is a little different.

MR. McCLELLAN: Understood. The President directed the White House to cooperate fully with the investigation. And that's what he expects people in the White House to do.

Q. And he would like to that when it is concluded, cooperate fully with —

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, I've already responded.

Go ahead.

Q. Scott, was it — who in the investigation made this request of the White House not to comment further about the investigation? Was it Mr. Fitzgerald? Did he make the request of you —

MR. McCLELLAN: I mean, you can ask — you can direct those questions to the special prosecutors. I think probably more than one individual who's involved in overseeing the investigation had expressed a preference that we not get into commenting on the investigation while it's ongoing. I think we all want to see the prosecutors get to the bottom of this matter. The President wants to see the prosecutors get to the bottom of this matter. And the way to help them do that is to not get into commenting on it while it is ongoing.

Q. Was the request made of you, or of whom in the White House?

MR. McCLELLAN: I already responded to these questions.

Go ahead.

Q. According to the Gallup Poll, 62 percent of the American people believe that a terrorist attack like the one we saw in London could happen here. In the President's speech today, we haven't heard anything new. What his plan exactly to protect the American people?

MR. McCLELLAN: It's exactly what he outlined in his remarks earlier today. It's a comprehensive strategy. We are working on multiple fronts to protect the American people. As he said, the best way to defend the American people is to stay on the offense and take the fight to the enemy. That's exactly what we are doing.

You see, the terrorists have been carrying out attacks for years. They felt that the civilized world would only respond in a very limited way. We saw the attacks back in '83 on the Marine barracks in Lebanon. We saw the attacks on — or the attack on the World Trade Center back in 1993. We saw the attacks on our embassies back in '98. They've certainly carried out attacks in other parts of the civilized world, as well.

The President saw the attacks of September 11th and said we are going to take the fight to the enemy. We are going to wage a comprehensive war, and we are going to see it through. The enemy will be defeated. And the way we will ultimately defeat the enemy is to defeat their hateful ideology. And you do that by spreading freedom because free societies are peaceful societies, as the President said.

Bob, go ahead.

Q. Yes, in your dealings with the special counsel, have you consulted a personal attorney?

MR. McCLELLAN: Again, I'm just not going to say anything further. I expressed all I'm going to say on this matter from this podium.

Go ahead.

Q. How does the uncertainty over Chief Justice Rehnquist affect the President's selection of a replacement for Justice O'Connor?

MR. McCLELLAN: How does the speculation about another vacancy?

Q. How does the uncertainty about Chief Justice Rehnquist affect the process?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, the President is moving forward to fill the vacancy. He spent time on his trip looking over the background materials of potential nominees and some of their key rulings or decisions. The President has been talking with senior staff — I know he visited with Andy Card about it on the trip, as well — and talking to them about potential nominees and the process for moving forward to name a nominee.

We are prepared for additional vacancies, if they should occur. This is something that we have prepared for, for quite some time at the White House. But I'm not aware of any announcement that's been made on an additional vacancy at this point.

Q. Scott, voting rights reauthorization. I understand the President is for voting rights reauthorization, but he still wants to study portions of it. It sounds kind of contradictory. Could you explain what that means, as it's up for renewal?

MR. McCLELLAN: Sure. As you point out, it's up of reauthorization in 2006. The President does support reauthorization. That process is getting underway in Congress. And as it works its way through Congress, the White House will look at and consider any improvements to strengthen it. And that's — that's really where it stands at this point.

Q. Well, what does he think could strengthen it? What tweaks is he thinking of right now —

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, I think that's something we'll look at. There are suggestions that I'm sure people are going to make as we move forward, and we'll look at and consider those suggestions. The President also met with the Congressional Black Caucus and said he would take their views into account as we move forward, as well.

Thank you. ... 1-3.html#2
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:08 am


4:56 pm, July 27, 2005

You know, “some people say” that shit-eating grin on Rove's face has been bugging them lately. They wonder if he's the pseudo-scapegoat, as in, the guy with the bulletproof hide who can take the hits that Fleischer couldn't.

Ari Fleischer quit his job the day Richard Novak outed Valerie Plame, and went off to hide in the woods, according to today's NYT:

New York Times, July 27, 2005

From the road, it is barely possible to see the home where Ari Fleischer lives. Tucked away behind a secured fence and a thicket of shrubbery (never say ”bushes“), Mr. Fleischer, the former White House press secretary, is right where he wants to be these days: nearly invisible.

Ari Fleischer was in the airplane when Sec. of State William Powell was walking around with a classified memo that undermined the Nigerian yellowcake lie that his boss was about broadcast to all humanity during the ”State of the Union Address.“ Rove supposedly learned about Valerie's identity as a CIA agent during that flight, when he saw the memo. However, according to undisclosed sources willing to breach Grand Jury secrecy, Fleischer said he never saw the memo. Yeah, right! You can imagine Rove, Powell and Bush all agreeing solemnly, ”Don't tell Ari about the CIA agent whose husband is giving us a screwing on the Niger yellowcakestory!“ Fleischer would be like, ”Okay, guys, what's in the memo?"

But how about this for a ridiculous spin:


Mr. Fleischer, as White House spokesman, delivered the White House pronouncements about the Iraq war in the weeks after the invasion began in March 203. But he was never part of Mr. Bush's inner circle, and he was not the only member of the Bush communications team involved in trying to counter Mr. Wilson's critique of prewar intelligence.

Well if Ari wasn't part of the Bush inner circle, then there's only one person in that inner circle — Karl Rove. So by deflecting blame from Fleischer, the NYT is helping refocus on Rove, who is free to hide his head in the sand, since he has a bulletproof ass.

And while Ari mayn't have been ”the only member ... trying to counter“ Wilson's outing of the President for using a knowingly false Niger yellowcake story, he was certainly one of the very top members of that ”communications team.“

Apparently, Ari's book, ”Taking Heat: The President, The Press, and My Years in The White House," wraps up with a description of the first storm warnings that blew up around the Plame Affair:

Ari Fleischer's book wrote:

A controversy raged over the accuracy of a claim the president had made in his State of the Union Address concerning Iraq's efforts to obtain uranium from Africa [and so] for more than 45 minutes, the press and I enjoyed our last clash.

Well, Ari may wish that were true, but I'm afraid he might have a few more questions to answer.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:12 am


2:50 am, July 29, 2005

Y'all remember Katherine Harris, the Florida Secretary of State that stopped the hand recounts in Palm Beach and other contested precincts that had been undertaken in order to count a host of Democratic votes that had turned up missing, uncounted, and miscounted. The same Katherine Harris who had removed 57,700 names from Florida's voter rolls on the grounds they were felons, even though many of the people deprived of the right to vote hadn't committed any crime at all. The same Katherine Harris who paid Choicepoint subsidiary DBT $2.3 million to “scrub” the voter database after firing the company that was doing the job the year before for a mere $5,700. Uh, yes, the same Choicepoint that lost the 4,000,000 names and related personal information earlier this year.

Greg Palast wrote about Harris' blatantly unfair voter de-registration policies, that affected not only the presidential vote, but also Jeb Bush's re-election race against Democratic challenger Bill McBride.

Greg Palast writing for

Florida is the only state paying a private company that promises to ”cleanse" voter rolls. The state signed a $4 million contract with DBT in 1998 (since 1999 a division of ChoicePoint of Atlanta) to create the scrub list, called the central voter file, which was mandated by a 1998 state voter-fraud law. *** Florida paid DBT $4.3 million over three years to help identify felons illegally registered to vote, replacing a company that had charged the state only $5,700 per year for this work ... because the giant database operator, which aids the FBI on manhunts, offered to verify the accuracy of the list using several of its 1,200 databases [and] by telephone calls . . . . But, with the state's permission, DBT skipped those costly cross-checks. Last February, when asked to explain why DBT was paid for verification work not done, Florida Elections Division chief Clayton Roberts ended an agreed-upon interview with this reporter, locked himself in his office, and called in state troopers to remove this reporter from the Florida capitol building in Tallahassee.

Harris sure knows how to pick her Elections Division Chief, and while Clayton Roberts may be no blood relation of John G. Roberts, I am sure they are well-acquainted based on Judge Roberts' intense labor revising briefs for the Bush campaign during the legal battles that were necessary to allow Ms. Harris' to keep her heavy hand on the throats of thousands of Florida voters, invalidating their votes for the presidential election. Jeb Bush's office tried to downplay Judge Roberts' unstinting labors to further the Bush dynastic impetus during the heady days of legal jousting that saw David Boies first win with the Florida Supreme Court to keep the recount going, and then lose before a Supreme Court opinion that has been widely denounced. As relayed by the AP, Jeb Bush's office threw cold water on the story:

Bush spokesman Jacob DiPietre

”He came down and met with the governor briefly and shared with him some of his thoughts on what he believed the governor's responsibilities were after a presidential election, a presidential election in dispute. There were several experts, including professors, scholars, constitutional experts who came down to Florida at that time and Judge Roberts was one of them.“

But a Miami Herald interview with Ted Cruz, currently Texas Solicitor General, reveals the nominee had a lead role, along with other former clerks of Justice William Rehnquist, in revising the crucial briefs and preparing George W. Bush's lawyer Ted Olson for his oral argument in front of Rehnquist. Getting Roberts on the job, according to Cruz, was a no-brainer.

Remembering those heady, sleep-deprived days, when four-hundred Florida Republican lawyers, led by teams of ”litigation lions“ and ”800 pound gorillas,“ threw themselves at the task of frustrating the Democrats' efforts to ”in effect, steal the elections,“ Cruz almost choked up with admiration for Roberts. From Cruz's viewpoint, Roberts was a hero, a selfless lawyer who ”already had a name [and] didn't need the recognition,“ but along with everyone else, he just ”grabbed a bucket" to put out the fire.

Yeah, and a hell of a dangerous fire that was — all those people counting ballots that had been carefully hidden, miscounted, misplaced. Flames were busting out all over. A conflagration of fair voting was about to engulf the process. Good thing they put that out. And everybody loves a fireman.

The Miami Herald article is at this link:

The image below is from the movie version of Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451. See more screen caps of great films at

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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:17 am


11:24 pm, August 5, 2005

Machiavelli said that winning makes everything all right. But sometimes it depends what you win. Back in 1996, Supreme Court nominee John G. Roberts, Jr. probably didn't foresee the tsunami of antigay sentiment that would be cresting nine years later, during his nomination. That’s why, in his sixty-plus page response to the Senate’s questionnaire, he didn’t mention his signal victory before the US Supreme Court in Romer v. Evans, that overturned the majority will of the people of Colorado, who by a vote of 53.4 percent, had enacted “Amendment 2:”

Neither the state of Colorado, through any of its branches or departments, nor any of its agencies, political subdivisions, municipalities or school districts, shall enact, adopt or enforce any statute, regulation, ordinance or policy whereby homosexual, lesbian or bisexual orientation, conduct, practices or relationships shall constitute or otherwise be the basis of, or entitle any person or class of persons to have or claim any minority status, quota preferences, protected status or claim of discrimination.

After the trial judge upheld the will of the anti-gay Coloradans, the activist Colorado Supreme Court sent the case back to the trial court July 19, 1993, ordering the trial judge to subject the citizen-enacted law to “strict scrutiny,” and rule it unconstitutional unless it advanced a “compelling state interest.” This is judicial code for “Kill this monster,” because according to Ken Karst of UCLA Law, my Con Law professor, no statute ever survives strict scrutiny. Of course, Ken is rarely wrong about such things, and was right in this case. The trial court ruled the bigoted law unconstitutional on December 14, 1993. Colorado took it back to the Colorado Supreme Court, predictably lost, and appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

About this time, you would expect John G. Roberts, Jr. to be winging into the Denver airport on a mission from G-d, to put the Philistines to flight like the legal Samson he is, to send those sodomites packing with their twisted carnal lusts. And he was flying into Denver, but for all the wrong reasons. Jimmy Carter may have lusted in his heart, but Roberts manifested sympathy for people who want to love with all he wrong parts of their bodies.

Yes, John G. Roberts, Jr. spearheaded the gay drive into the vitals of the nation’s jurisprudence, upending the law, and debauching it to accommodate the unnatural desires of those who cannot understand that sex and marriage were meant by G-d to be a purely heterosexual phenomenon. Penises go into vaginas, and into nothing else. Vaginas are to be penetrated only be penises. Get it straight! Roberts did not, and most unfortunately, pitched the Supreme Court to the left, getting a clear 6-3 majority that marginalized his future buddies, Chief Justice Rehnquist, Justice Scalia, and Justice Thomas, who squeaked out a 3-man dissent. Whoa! Talk about being on the wrong side of the issue!

Limbaugh, the dopehead, is on a rant about this, and you can basically start working on a crucifix for Roberts. This hired gun is in a world of hurt, and claiming to be a hired gun isn’t going to get him out of it. According to the New York Times, this Romer case is a double black mark against Roberts. First, he was doing pro bono, which is totally gross, and worse, he was lavishing this disgusting free work on people who have sex in ways that Rush only fantasizes about.

But the Democrats will probably screw it up by going on the attack now, instead of letting the Publicans burn their own man alive. Every hear about the inventor of The Brass Bull? It was a torture device in which the victim was imprisoned in the “belly” of the brass bull, and then roasted slowly so their agonized cries issued from the bowels of the bull for hours. Legend says that the creator of the horrific device, who had thought to please a cruel king with his invention, instead invoked the king’s most perverse impulse, who directed that the inventor be the first to taste the fruits of his genius, and promptly roasted him, commenting on how well the device worked.

Through his pro bono work in Florida, John G. Roberts, Jr. saddled the nation with the president he thought we should have. And due to his misplaced sympathies for the sexual underclass, he will now be denied admission to the highest seat of power. Ironic, or merely just? Let’s wait and see.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:18 am


6:36 pm, August 7, 2005

On June 27, 2005, the Supreme Court decided MGM v. Grokster. From the sounds in the press, you'd think Hollywood won. But before we get into that, let's address a fundamental question: What does “Grok” mean? Although it sounds like something a psychedelic toad might say, it's actually a verb invented by Robert Heinlein, to describe an enhanced way of knowing other people, in his hilarious scifi spoof of hippies and psychics, “Stranger In A Strange Land.” The novel hasn’t been popular since the seventies, though, and this literary allusion has probably had little significance for most Grokster users, who just want to get free music. In that regard, Grokster was very helpful. As Justice Souter wrote in Grokster: “The record is replete with evidence that from the moment Grokster and StreamCast began to distribute their free software, each one clearly voiced the objective that recipients use it to download copyrighted works, and each took active steps to encourage infringement.”

That was bad, as you might have guessed. Because thievery is bad, and giving people tools to steal, while suggesting they can’t be caught, is inducing people to steal, which is bad enough to make honest people stay out of the business. And by and large, I think honest people stayed out of the business of providing tools specifically marketed to the infringing public.

Grokster marked no change in the law, however, and for Hollywood's long term interests, that was a disappointment. The Ninth Circuit has merely been directed to impose liability for copyright infringement where the manufacturer clearly identifies infringement as the raison d' etre of the product. That was the case with Napster, and it has to be the case with Grokster, Morpheus, and Kazaa, the other defendants in the case. Advocating thievery by means of your device is unlawful, and it doesn't matter that you don't sell the software, particularly where the software is purveyed via a “free software” scheme that plants spyware and advertising on your desk or laptop computer. That was of course the case with Kazaa, which brought millions of desktop machines to a standstill, able only to stream banners, popups, and other garbage.

Justice Souter’s opinion described the Ninth Circuit’s holding as follows:

Justice Souter in MGM v. Grokster

The Ninth Circuit [concluded that] distribution of a commercial product capable of substantial noninfringing uses could not give rise to contributory liability for infringement unless the distributor had actual knowledge of specific instances of infringement and failed to act on that knowledge. The fact that the software was capable of substantial noninfringing uses in the Ninth Circuit's view meant that Grokster and StreamCast were not liable, because they had no such actual knowledge, owing to the decentralized architecture of their software. The court also held that Grokster and StreamCast did not materially contribute to their users' infringement because it was the users themselves who searched for, retrieved, and stored the infringing files, with no involvement by the defendants beyond providing the software in the first place.

What is this about “substantial noninfringing uses?” Since when did anyone load Grokster, Streatmcast, Morpheus, Kazaa or any other “FastTrack-based” P2P system on their machine so they could engage in a noninfringing use? Napster and the Grokster defendants were all disseminating software that induced people to steal. The trial judge killed Napster because Shawn Fanning had clearly announced at the start of the venture his intention to encourage piracy. Napster had substantial non-infringing uses, in a theoretical sense, but that didn’t save it from being sued out of existence, so what was the difference between Fanning’s piratical venture and the software at issue in Grokster? Napster stored the infringing content on its own severs, whereas the FastTrack based P2P software allowed each desktop user to treat the whole Internet as a hard drive, thus eliminating the need for the server. The Supreme Court saw this as a distinction without a difference – the point wasn’t how the software worked, but how it was marketed. Marketing discloses the intention, wrongful or otherwise, of the software distributor. In order to avoid infringement suits, anyone who sells software utilities that copy content as part of their use and value should never announce, as an incentive, that their product can be used to commit theft.

Of course, some people like to popularize the “grey” character of their ware, but they are often swindlers with strange agendas. Steve Cohen trumpeted the piratical utility of his Earth Station 5 web-based P2P utility by declaring ES Five to be “at war with the RIAA.” Cohen supposedly housed the venture in Jenin, Palestine, and said he was never served with a lawsuit because no process servers would go there. Probably there was no one in Palestine — who would work there when they could just work in Israel and claim to work in Jenin using a mail drop? Steve's dodges are so predictable, but once you have the Washington Post repeating your cover story, like Cohen did back in February 2004, you're in good shape. The intrepid old swindler told me half of his purpose in running the site, which stole and re-streamed “The Naked News” from, was to offend the owners of Wired Solutions, the creators of the Naked News. But when Ashcroft said he was going to go criminal on copyright infringers, Cohen decided to get out of the business, because he didn't want to be involved with anything criminal. He said he was not bothered by the civil arrest warrant he's been subject to since 2001 for failing to appear in San Jose US District Court as ordered by Judge James A. Ware in Kremen v. Cohen.

Altruistic as Cohen’s campaign to free content from its owners might have been, it wasn't lawful, and he was well aware of his vulnerability to civil lawsuits, which was one of his announced reasons for locating in Palestine, a non-nation in which even the rules on local service of process are unsettled. Still, that would be no comfort to him if Ashcroft put him on a wanted listed and faxed it to Interpol, because Steve now runs casinos worldwide and doesn’t need extra heat, so he surfed right out of the infringement business. Having been to Club Fed once, he claims to be disinterested in anything would spark a return visit, and realized that his “declaration of war” would seal his doom if Ashcroft wanted to start swearing out indictments and arrest warrants.

How could the Ninth Circuit could ever insulate these defendants from liability? How could you immunize companies that were started by crooks seeking to circumvent the effect of the Napster decision by “decentralizing” their business operations, that turned all their users into infringers and scofflaws, got some of them sued, and captured all the cash? Not to mention that they deliberately fed a huge, ultra-high-tech piracy network to make sure their uses had plenty of stolen files to “trade.” (Wired article.)

Kids and grannies get sued for using Kazaa, after being encouraged to use it for that purpose, but Kazaa is not infringing? Hold it a minute! You’re trying to treat them like the Publicans treat gun manufacturers – as not responsible for the injuries their products cause? And therein, my friend, lies the difference. Gun manufacturers carefully avoid marketing to criminals. They explicitly market to the hunting, home defense, and target-shooting consumers. They don’t have to market the utility of their products to murderers, armed robbers, rapists, terrorists, and rogue cops. Hollywood has done that work for free. And Hollywood was the plaintiff in Grokster, of course, which illuminates the most important legal principle here, as in every case: “Whose ox is gored?”

Whose ox indeed? To understand the depth of this legal principle, let us return to the “Betamax Case,” Universal v. Sony, 104 S. Ct. 774. Who had oxen in that goring contest? Sony, the maker of the Betamax video recorder, which could record TV shows off the air, was sued by Universal, the maker of movies that are licensed for showing on TV. Today, of course, Sony-Time-Life is the largest producer of entertainment in the world, and is currently recycling TV reruns on the big screen in “Bewitched.” Nowadays, Universal and Sony are on the same side of the issue, and Sony would never sell such a “disruptive” technology, and indeed, has introduced only unpopular digital music devices, primarily because of their insistence on using proprietary technology like the “mini-disc” and proprietary file systems for VAIO PCs. These are habits Sony picked up since it became a content mogul, so frankly, the Betamax case is a mistake that Sony will never make again.

But let’s hit rewind and go back to those crazy days in 1976, when the Betamax invaded American homes. This machine ushered in the video store and porn boom, let people watch Monday Night Football on six other nights of the week, and let them zap advertising, that obnoxious time-thief that dilutes the pure entertainment value of a show or movie. Why did Universal lose that case? Well first, what did Universal contend? They claimed that any machine that could clip broadcasts out of the air that were only licensed to be shown by the TV networks for one, very expensive time period, shouldn’t become permanently licensed to the viewers who happen to tape the show when it was showing, using the clever timer that allowed people to start recording even while they were away. Then they come home and watch it, zapping ads all the way. This, it was universally agreed all up and down Sunset Boulevard and south to Olympic Boulevard at least, could not be right.

But you know what? That Monday Night Football turned out to be mighty important. The NFL and other sporting entities said they weren’t Hollywood, they weren’t making movies, they were playing sports, and even professional sports were meant to be played once and enjoyed, studied, analyzed and treasured forever. Why not just confiscate all the photos of Babe Ruth and Mickey Mantle hitting home runs? Why not indeed, Hollywood echoed, but their cries went unheeded, and all the professional sports teams and college leagues came out in favor of the value of the Betamax’s broadcast-taping capability. This was indeed a “substantial, non-infringing use” of some importance to the Supreme Court. Sports, and the interests of athletic associations, always seem to get extra-deferential treatment from the Supremes. Baseball, for example, enjoys a unique freedom from liability under the Antitrust laws for which there is no precedent other than that it is the national game, and presumably, must be rigged to protect the public. Take note, however, that professional sports did not weigh in on the side of the defendants in the Grokster case, and why should they? Sports videos were not widely shared on Kazaa any more than other public domain materials.

The second notable feature of the Betamax opinion is its conclusion that once content is broadcast over the airwaves even once, and made available for capture by this new technology, it enjoys diminished protection forever. If you can spring for a VCR, you can get your copy of Bambi virtually free, after you edit out all of the Tinkerbell visits and toy ads. Universal howled at this result like a banshee deprived of the opportunity to consume its firstborn. Record the whole damn thing! How could that be “fair use,” that previously had seemed to allow authors to quote brief portions of copyrighted works for scholarly or critical purposes? But the Supremes basically said – hey, you put it out there, now they got it, and they have the right to have it. People were surprised at this ruling, but for the first time it put teeth in a provision of the Federal Copyright Statutes that had really been ignored – 17 U.S.C. Section 107. In Section 107, Congress made it very clear that copyright protection is limited by the public’s pre-existing right of fair use of the author’s works, thus recognizing the importance of the audience in the creative dialogue. In other words, the author can obtain copyright protection, but it is “subject to” the right of the public to read, discuss, study, copy, criticize, and otherwise expose the work to criticism and appreciation. Of course, otherwise, copyright law would at minimum silence free speech. This has been successfully accomplished of course, by major news entities, that have been allowed to copyright the President’s Speeches, thus locking them out of the public domain. No one has yet challenged that, but the challenge, once made, will be successful. The President is no one’s actor, at least not according to the Constitution and Section 107.

Who is reading Grokster very carefully? All purveyors of free software that in any way utilize the copying of copyrightable content as part of its package of product benefits. Google, for example, is a free software scheme that has already scared the bejeezus out of the world’s advertising agencies and content monopolists. Witness the hue and cry over Google’s threat to put all the world's books online. That fact is, if we don't start putting libraries online, reading books will become about as popular as polo in Greenland.

Since all that Grokster really said is that you can’t advertise burglar tools as burglar tools – you have to call them omnidrectional screwdrivers. Anyone who thinks that inviting people to use your software to commit theft is a good idea is not a business partner, he or she is an RIAA private investigator looking to set you up! So keep on cranking out that P2P software, and emphasize not the pleasures of theft, but the joys of sharing public domain materials, engaging in fair use such as study, discussion, and criticism. After all, how can you study music but by listening to it? Do music teachers have to license their lessons? Suppose Kurt Cobain had been required to pay to listen to the radio? C’mon – the listener becomes the creator by listening, by studying. Media has value only when it’s consumed.

The future of media distribution is not in monopolization of creative production by either the imposition of artificial limits on distribution (the Clipper Chip, the V-Chip, the Broadcast Flag, and other Cripple-ware). The days are over when the media monopolists could enforce their monopoly through production and distribution bottlenecks (CD pressing, transporting, and selling through retail outlets), while simultaneously engaging in price-fixing schemes such as the one that the RIAA settled with the FTC in 2004 for a $450 Million fine. The days of endless gravy are over. It’s time for the dinosaurs of LA to sell their Wilshire condos and move to Australia, Israel, Florida, or Arizona. Their work is done, their sun has set. Ovitz is a washed up joke. Eisner hung around too long. Lucas has at last completed the longest shaggy dog story in history, and Steve Jobs is a bigger media mogul than Barry Diller. We can only hope that their jaded, tired vision of our world will depart with them.
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Re: Charles Carreon, The Arizona Kid

Postby admin » Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:26 am


August 11, 2005


The parking lot was full at City Hall on Tuesday night. For weeks Ashland had been bubbling with the news that the City Attorney had ruled that the Rogue Valley Roasting Company, an East Main Ashland landmark with a broad clientele, was operating without required City permits. Coming hot on the heels of the Chief Bianca dust-up, the flap over The Roasting Company seemed ill-timed, publicity-wise. The fact that the anti-coffee-house action had been instigated at the direct request of City Councilwoman Cate Hartzell, whose home lies across from the popular shop, seemed to have especially raised hackles. Adding to this the fact that The Roasting Company had strong local support, the heavy turnout was not unexpected.

In what struck many of the waiting citizens as a ploy to delay their involvement, two other matters consumed the first two hours of the Commission meeting. It was around nine o’clock and still standing room only in the Ashland City Council Chamber when the Planning Commission took up Planning Action 2005-01313, “An Appeal to the Planning Commission of a Staff Advisor determination that the current use of the subject property at 917 E. Main Street as a coffee shop is an illegal, non-conforming use in violation of Ashland Municipal Code 18.68.090.” Appellant Jerry Quast, the proprietor of The Roasting Company, was represented by Alan Harper, seeking to overturn the verdict of illegality that Asst. City Attorney Mike Reeder had imposed on the Ashland landmark.

Jerry and Deborah Quast’s business life hung in the balance. The bad news had arrived in a letter dated April 5, 2005, signed by John McLaughlin, Ashland’s Director of Community Development. McLaughlin’s letter told Jerry and Deborah that “the City of Ashland … has determined that … your occupancy of the site as a coffee shop is considered illegal [therefore you] are required to apply for a Conditional Use Permit [and] failure to apply for a permit will result in the City being required to take enforcement action.”

What had brought this meteorite crashing down upon their heads, the Quasts asked themselves? The answers would come in good time. On March 17, 2005, Cate Hartzell had sent a letter to City Manager Gino Grimaldi that accused The Roasting Company of a serious offense: “The Rogue Valley Roasting Company has become successful; unfortunately, the neighbors pay the cost and the City stepped away from its role.” Success often leads to a fall, but for The Roasting Company, it seemed too ironic. The booming trade at the coffeehouse, that seems to funnel hundreds of people of every age and description through on a good day, is a symbol of the city’s vitality. Equally important, and perhaps equally offensive to its detractors, over the years The Roasting Company became a public forum where people could meet away from the homogenized coffee ambiance that saturates the town. The Roasting Company, its scores of supporters made clear, provides a welcome antidote to the corporate blandness that has invaded Ashland insidiously over the last thirty years. For Councilwoman Hartzell to attack The Roasting Company seemed surprisingly insensitive, a bureaucratic faux pas that attracted notice from supporters and opponents alike.

Passing beyond the touchy-feely realm, the sudden appearance of a real threat to the existence of The Roasting Company touched a nerve of self-protectiveness in the Ashland core. Heavens, thought many, where will I get coffee and a bagel? Plus, many old timers have bought food and drinks at that location for four decades, and the very idea that the place could be shut down for a zoning violation seemed ludicrous. For their part, the Quasts have always been squeaky clean. After they bought the property in 1994, City planning employee Bill Molnar told them they didn’t need a Conditional Use Permit to operate a coffee shop because of its historic uses. In other words, the property was “grandfathered” as a grocery store deli/coffeeshop. When the Quasts made indoor improvements and added a deck to the coffeehouse in July, 1998, City planning employees Mark Knox signed off on building and zoning permits with full knowledge of current use as a coffeehouse. Internal City memoranda acknowledged that the Quast’s property had been grandfathered for the coffeehouse use. What could be more secure?

But trouble sneaks up when you rarely expect it, and it turned out that having a City Councilperson across the street from the business was not a good thing. And having obliging lawyers in the City Attorney’s office who work at the behest of the City Council ready to field complaints for City insiders may be the type of problem that just plain folks have a nose for. Assistant City Attorney Mike Reeder told the Commissioners that after investigating Councilwoman Hartzell’s complaints, he had found no grounds for taking action against The Roasting Company’s operation, but that after a searching review of the file, he had discovered that City planners had made errors that had to be corrected by having The Roasting Company’s owners file for a Conditional Use Permit. Reeder explained that “the rule of law” demanded that The Roasting Company’s operation be brought into compliance, or face enforcement proceedings. Without apologies, he urged the Commission to uphold his finding that a “change in use” which occurred during a rather vague time period in the nineties, rendered the presence of the coffeehouse illegal. Reeder counseled the Commissioners to disregard any arguments about the untimeliness of the City’s negative land use action, because the landowner “has the burden” of remaining in compliance with local laws, regardless of whatever reassurances they might receive from City officers. Thus, without saying it, Reeder seemed to be articulating a new rule – the citizen must pay when the City discovers its own “errors” years after the fact. Alan Harper argued that the delay was all-important and barred any action by the City against the existing grandfathered use, because the 1998 permit signoff by Mark Knox was a “final land use action” to which objections had to be filed within a very short time frame, and they were now nearly seven years too late. Reeder’s five-page, single-spaced decision convicted The Roasting Company of illegal operation only after awkwardly attempting to explain away the problem of untimeliness, but the verbose legal essay came off as a sophomoric piece of pettifoggery, if the three retired attorneys who testified at the hearing were any sort of jury. Certainly the crowd were having none of Reeder’s lawyerly fancy steps, as he learned when he harvested catcalls from the crowd after inadvertently disclosing his view that the opinions of citizens were “not relevant.” But still, on any ordinary night, the paper-pushers would have won. But this was a different night. The crowd did not disperse, and one sensed they would not leave quietly without being given their due.

Chair John Fields managed the proceedings sensitively, and the Commissioners, after initially seeming somewhat alarmed at the extraordinarily large turnout, gamely extended the time for the hearing until 11 o’clock. The citizen speakers were notably concise, clocking in, on average, at no more than 40 seconds beyond the 3-minute limit. Several speakers commented on the tardiness of the City’s action, and the fact that the City’s ruling of illegality was based on the City’s admission that it had erred twice in permitting the coffeehouse to operate without requiring a Conditional Use Permit. It did appear, as John Gaffey observed, that the City Attorney’s office had made a mess and dumped it in the Planning Commission’s lap. Several speakers echoed this opinion, noting that the City should not penalize a landowner for “errors” that had been “found” by Asst. City Attorney Reeder after looking for some grounds to satisfy Councilwoman Hartzell’s demand for “City involvement” in her neighborhood relations. Several citizens complained that the proceedings were “a travesty,” speculating that real estate interests might be attempting to oust a successful business in order to convert the location to multi-unit housing, and one The Roasting Company supporter bluntly stated that “Something stinks. Something stinks and everyone here in this room can smell it.” No one disagreed with him, and I for one did not smell coffee.

After the testimony of the citizens, Cate Hartzell, who entered and left the Chamber as if on cue, gave her testimony in the sincere voice we have come to recognize as her hallmark. However, she spoke so softly that it almost seemed as if she wished to speak privately with the Commissioners, and displayed only one photograph to the Commission that she said was representative of many more that she had back at her home. One wag in the audience wondered whether this was an invitation for all of the citizens, or just the Commissioners, to stop by and flip through her album of The Roasting Company surveillance photos.

After the testimony of the complaining Councilor, the issue was brought to a vote on the motion of Commissioner Ken Kairn, after the motion of Commissioner John Stromberg to allow time for discussion failed for lack of a second. The vote was 7-to-2 in favor of overturning the City’s finding of illegality. One opposing vote was cast by Olena Black, who sought to stretch the Commission’s jurisdiction to encompass considerations of whether The Roasting Company’s provision of free wireless Internet had “changed the use” of the coffeeshop. The second dissenting vote was from John Stromberg, whose motion for further discussion and delay received no second.

The Quasts had been cut down from the gallows, and none too soon. Afterward, Jerry Quast clearly seemed emotionally drained, and when I asked him for a comment, he almost seemed not to be believing how things had gone as he simply repeated, “We never thought we had done anything wrong.” Indeed, he had not, and as one former City employee said in his testimony, the event was an embarrassment to the City, for which the Quasts should receive an apology and compensation for their legal fees. With land use lawyers running about $300/hour, the Quasts are going to have to sell a lot of coffee to get back to where they were before their powerful neighbor, with the help of a lot of free legal work from the City Attorney’s office, declared war on their business. But that’s politics, and when you are fighting City Hall, sometimes just surviving to fight another day is a big win.

For the community, the win could not be clearer. The Planning Commission has been informed that they are not be used as an ad hoc grievance council for liveability issues, and that “success” is not a reason to close a local business, regardless of who lives across the street from it.
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