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Old 09-08-2005, 01:26 PM   #346
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Don't know if this is the place to post this.... I got it this morning from a friend.


JOHN KERRY


Dear ________,

"More tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans are off the table." Those are the words that America is waiting to hear from President Bush. At a time of crisis and enormous need, it should be an easy decision for him to make. He could make the announcement tomorrow.

There is hurt and suffering all around us. Estimates are that it will cost as much as $150 billion to help the hard-hit people and communities of the Gulf Coast get back on their feet following Katrina's devastation. And the Bush administration's failed policies in Iraq are draining billions of dollars from our treasury every month.

But still, Republican leaders refuse to abandon their obsession with granting still more tax cuts to the wealthy and well-connected. Don't let them get away with it.

Sign our "Don't You Dare" petition right now.

http://www.johnkerry.com/petition/taxcuts.php

Believe it or not, with all our nation is going through, there are Republicans still pushing to put tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans on Congress' agenda this fall.

Republican leaders were forced to postpone plans for an immediate vote this week on eliminating the estate tax. But, they haven't backed off their larger plan for more tax cuts to benefit the wealthiest Americans.

This is a test of what kind of country we are. Are we an America that responds to crisis by helping the most vulnerable in times of need, or do we just give more to those who have the most?

Please join today in demanding that Republican leaders forego any and all plans to lavish tax cuts on the wealthy at this moment of crisis.

http://www.johnkerry.com/petition/taxcuts.php

What can they be thinking? Why haven't President Bush, Senator Frist and Speaker Hastert taken off the table the outrageous notion of bestowing more tax cuts on the wealthy at a time like this? How long will it be before they start telling us that tax cuts for the wealthy can provide just the stimulus we need to get the Gulf Coast economy moving again?

Going forward with the GOP's next round of tax cuts for the wealthy would be a bitter betrayal -- a slap in the face to the hundreds of thousands of Katrina survivors struggling to put their lives back together. It's time for the President and his Republican colleagues to send a clear, unambiguous message that they understand the situation our nation is facing. The American people want to hear from them now -- and, until they back off of their tax cuts for the wealthy, we'll make sure they hear from us.

http://www.johnkerry.com/petition/taxcuts.php

All around us, there are signs of American courage and American compassion. People who lived through hell are finding the strength to carry on. People who know what their fellow Americans are going through have reached out in one of the most far-reaching displays of generosity in our nation's history.

Yet here the Republican Party's leaders sit back in Washington, desperately clinging to the hope that they can force through another round of tax cuts for the chosen few. They shouldn't wait a day longer before they make a clear commitment not to pursue more tax cuts for the wealthy. And, until they come to their senses, we'll keep the pressure on.

http://www.johnkerry.com/petition/taxcuts.php

We've got to stop these tax cuts from diverting resources that are needed for vitally important priorities such as helping those who have lost so much -- and have so far to go before they are on the road to recovery.

I hope you'll sign our "Don't You Dare" petition today demanding that Republican leaders abandon their plans to lavish more tax cuts on the wealthy. There has never been a more important time than this to give voice to your values.

I hope you will stand with us.

Sincerely,

John Kerry

P.S. After you sign the petition, please forward it to everyone you can think of who might be willing to sign. The more signatures we gather, the more quickly we can force Republican leaders to take tax cuts for the wealthy off the table.
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Old 09-08-2005, 01:59 PM   #347
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Please. I guess until you see GWB's head on a stick, you will always question any investigation.
I don't particularly want to see GWB's head on a stick. But I think it's OK to ask questions about the investigation. This Congress approved cutting half of FEMA's budget, so I question how good it will do.
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Old 09-08-2005, 02:00 PM   #348
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http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9257564/

Cheney: ‘Impressive’ progress in Katrina relief
Vice president tours stricken region amid criticism of federal effort
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Old 09-08-2005, 02:19 PM   #349
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I liked the last part:

‘Media opportunity’
While Cheney spoke, a passer-by hurled an expletive at the vice president. “First time I’ve heard it,” Cheney said, when asked if he was hearing a lot of such sentiments.

Most the people Cheney met with were friendly. Lynne Lofton, whose house further down the street was completely destroyed, was an exception.

“I think this media opportunity today is a terrible waste of time and taxpayer money,” she said. “They’ve picked a nice neighborhood where people have insurance and most are Republicans.”

Cheney was also accompanied by Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff.

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Old 09-08-2005, 02:22 PM   #350
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lila64
Don't know if this is the place to post this.... I got it this morning from a friend.


JOHN KERRY


Dear ________,

"More tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans are off the table." Those are the words that America is waiting to hear from President Bush. At a time of crisis and enormous need, it should be an easy decision for him to make. He could make the announcement tomorrow.

There is hurt and suffering all around us. Estimates are that it will cost as much as $150 billion to help the hard-hit people and communities of the Gulf Coast get back on their feet following Katrina's devastation. And the Bush administration's failed policies in Iraq are draining billions of dollars from our treasury every month.

But still, Republican leaders refuse to abandon their obsession with granting still more tax cuts to the wealthy and well-connected. Don't let them get away with it.

to be fair, not all Republicans are refusing:

GOP leaders would not say how long they would delay considering the tax-and-spending cut packages, the cornerstones of their fall agenda, insisting the cuts would be passed eventually.

But pressure is mounting from lawmakers of both parties to make the delay indefinite. Of the $35 billion in cuts planned over five years, up to $10 billion would come from Medicaid, just as Republicans are suggesting that all Katrina survivors be granted access to the key federal health program for the poor.

Sens. Gordon Smith, R-Ore., and Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, teamed with Sens. Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M., and Blanche Lincoln, D-Ark., to circulate a letter imploring GOP leaders to set aside the measures. Wilson said similar discussions are underway in the House.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9234950/
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Old 09-08-2005, 02:25 PM   #351
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Originally posted by Lila64
Lynne Lofton, whose house further down the street was completely destroyed, was an exception.

“I think this media opportunity today is a terrible waste of time and taxpayer money,” she said.
Lynne Lofton??

Ciould she be a unlawful combatant????



next stop, GITMO
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Old 09-09-2005, 08:51 AM   #352
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interesting Time article about Mike Brown's resume

http://www.time.com/time/nation/arti...0.html?cnn=yes

"Brown's lack of experience in emergency management isn't the only apparent bit of padding on his resume, which raises questions about how rigorously the White House vetted him before putting him in charge of FEMA"
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Old 09-09-2005, 09:37 AM   #353
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FEMA leaders lack disaster experience

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9261552/

Quote:
Touring the wrecked Gulf Coast with Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff yesterday, Vice President Cheney also defended FEMA leaders, saying, "We're always trying to strike the right balance" between political appointees and "career professionals that fill the jobs underneath them."

But experts inside and out of government said a "brain drain" of experienced disaster hands throughout the agency, hastened in part by the appointment of leaders without backgrounds in emergency management, has weakened the agency's ability to respond to natural disasters. Some security experts and congressional critics say the exodus was fueled by a bureaucratic reshuffling in Washington in 2003, when FEMA was stripped of its independent Cabinet-level status and folded into the Department of Homeland Security.

Emergency preparedness has atrophied as a result, some analysts said, extending from Washington to localities.

"[FEMA] has gone downhill within the department, drained of resources and leadership," said I.M. "Mac" Destler, a professor at the University of Maryland School of Public Policy. "The crippling of FEMA was one important reason why it failed."
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Old 09-09-2005, 09:42 AM   #354
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More from the article Kelly posted:

Quote:
FEMA's top three leaders -- Director Michael D. Brown, Chief of Staff Patrick J. Rhode and Deputy Chief of Staff Brooks D. Altshuler -- arrived with ties to President Bush's 2000 campaign or to the White House advance operation, according to the agency. Two other senior operational jobs are filled by a former Republican lieutenant governor of Nebraska and a U.S. Chamber of Commerce official who was once a political operative.
[emphasis mine]

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Old 09-09-2005, 09:44 AM   #355
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http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9179036/site/newsweek/

Quote:
Phoenix, AZ: Why is it that all this is being blamed on the federal government? Where is the responsibility of the local and state government in this?
Richard Wolffe: I don't think everything is being blamed on the federal government. Most people recognize there were failures at all levels of government - national, state and local. But in a catastrophe as big as this, there is a natural focus on the one piece that can make a difference - the federal government. It's the only one with the resources (ie, cash) and the assets (ie, military) to help on such a huge scale.
Quote:
Spring Valley, CA: Why all the blaming of Bush and the federal government when local government allowed the barbarism to reach such depths?
Richard Wolffe: Do you think local government really allowed the barbarism? Looks to me like they were overwhelmed in terms of law enforcement. Many New Orleans police officers lost their own homes and loved ones. But it is legitimate to ask why there wasn't more National Guard in the city to help them out. Since the Guard remains under state control, that's something the Governor is responsible for in the first place. Having said that, the federal government could still have swept through any local and state issues.
Quote:
Atlanta, GA: Why is everyone focusing on the federal gov't? I do not blame the federal government. This falls under the state and the city. The mayor is incompetent in that he had no plan for a natural disaster -- the city sits on the water for goodness sake. He had no appropriations for police staffing, fire fighters, supplies for evacuees in the Superdome, etc. You cannot sit there, as mayor of a large city ON THE WATER, and act as if you did not expect this storm! It is called being prepared and organizd and a good leader. Futhermore, a good leader does not dish out the blame. It is underhanded politics he is playing.
Richard Wolffe: Well there are real questions about the decisions of the mayor and governor. Should the mayor have ordered a mandatory evacuation a day before he did, giving two days for people to leave the city? It's worth remembering how quickly this hurricane strengthened once it passed over Florida. Then again, everyone knew the vulnerability of New Orleans in a case like this. And according to several published reports, the disaster planning exercises never fully addressed the fate of those who couldn't or wouldn't leave the city.
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Old 09-09-2005, 11:17 AM   #356
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WOW What cojones he has. Using this tragedy to do what the righties always dreamed of.

One action Bush did not trumpet publicly drew a quick protest from a leading Democrat. By executive order, Bush suspended the Davis-Bacon Act in areas of Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, and Mississippi, allowing federal contractors to pay less than the local "prevailing wage" on construction projects.

Rep. George Miller of California, senior Democrat on the House committee that oversees labor law, said the move would allow employers to pay "poverty wages" as they rebuild from the hurricane.

"The administration is using the devastation of Hurricane Katrina to cut the wages of people desperately trying to rebuild their lives," he said in a statement, noting the prevailing wage for construction in New Orleans was about $9 an hour. "At under $9 an hour, workers certainly won't be able to rebuild their livelihoods," he said.

It's a good thing we have a president who doesn't believe in playing politics, isn't it?
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Old 09-09-2005, 01:51 PM   #357
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I've read several times that Michael Moore is considering a movie, I guess it would be like a Fah 9/11 about Katrina..

Michael Moore and his crew are on the scene in Covington, La. A source tells MSNBC.com's Jeannette Walls that the "Fahrenheit 9/11" director is "seriously considering" turning the disaster and its political fallout into a documentary. Word is that the Oscar winner does have cameras, but one of his associates tells us, "We didn't go there to make a documentary. We're participating in the relief effort"
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Old 09-09-2005, 01:57 PM   #358
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Old 09-09-2005, 02:08 PM   #359
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Also, I don't know if it's of any interest to anyone, but Oprah did 2 shows earlier this week from the gulf coast, talked to some survivors, and also recruited stars that offered their assistance. Matthew McConaghy helped rescue the one doctor that stayed behind to care for 50+ pets that he promised to take care of for their owners that had been rescued. This was the day after that helicopter had gone down (which was there to help rescue him that day, but couldn't). Julia Roberts went to a shelter and visited with people; Chris Rock, John Travolta & wife Kelly Preston, Oprah's friend Gayle, and Lisa Marie Presley helping out in Memphis. Going to a Target and buying thousands of dollars in supplies, clothes, toothbrushes,... and handing them out... She also had Dr. Oz (heart surgeon) who has been on her show several times. He was down there trying to help out as well.
They were 2 moving shows, at least to me. There's some info on Oprah's site, but I know not everyone is a fan of hers...
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Old 09-09-2005, 02:26 PM   #360
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Originally posted by MrsSpringsteen
I've read several times that Michael Moore is considering a movie, I guess it would be like a Fah 9/11 about Katrina..

Michael Moore and his crew are on the scene in Covington, La. A source tells MSNBC.com's Jeannette Walls that the "Fahrenheit 9/11" director is "seriously considering" turning the disaster and its political fallout into a documentary. Word is that the Oscar winner does have cameras, but one of his associates tells us, "We didn't go there to make a documentary. We're participating in the relief effort"
michael moore can suck my nuts

nice to see him attempting to cash in on another national tragedy... douche bag
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