Monthly Archives: July 2010

Rippin off military widows is criminal.

MetLife, Prudential and six other insurance companies have really screwed the pooch…and themselves if Andrew Cuomo knows wtf he is talking about. The following quote from Robert Gates…

“Until today, I actually believed that the families of our fallen heroes got a check for the full amount of their benefit,”

…Should really piss-the-fuck-off every single person that breathes.  If NY AG Andy Cuomo is correct, this shit should be criminal:

The attorney general’s office said it appears some insurers tell families of fallen military personnel that policy payouts will be placed in an interest-bearing account. But the bulk of the interest benefits the insurers, and the cash is not placed in banks insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), Cuomo’s office said.

 “It is shocking and just plain wrong for these multinational life insurance companies to pocket hundreds of millions in profits that really belong to those who have lost family members and have already suffered immensely,” Cuomo said.

His office said insurers place cash in their corporate accounts, reportedly earning up to 4.8 percent interest while paying families as little as 0.5 percent interest.(emphasis mine)

Subpoenas have been served on eight insurance companies — Prudential Financial Inc., MetLife Inc., Genworth Financial Inc., UnumProvident Corp., Northwestern Mutual, Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, New York Life Insurance Co., and the MONY Life Insurance Co. — though the entire life insurance industry is under investigation, according to the attorney general’s office.

I am hoping this isn’t a bullshit political move by Cuomo, who is running for NY Governor. I hope to hell he is being honest on this….so he can fuck the living shit out of these smarmy insurance bastards.

The devastation is horrific. Kernville and Tehachapi fires

I live in the south-end of the San Joaquin Valley. I am surrounded on three sides by magnificent mountain ranges. One of the most beautiful places I like to go, that is wonderfully close to my home is the mountains northeast of here, the Kern River Valley, which is the beginning of the Sequoia National Forest. The Kern River provides water to the fuckwits of Los Angeles, it’s that big Its stunning and so magnificent…and it will be again.

But it will take years for the area to come back after the ravaging fire that ran through that area the last few days, the fire is called “The Bull Fire”. Kernville is a small, very rural,friendly  town up there in the mountains, the welcoming area as it were, of the Sequoia National Forest. Some People lost their homes, their animals, basically everything. The damage to wildlife is unknown at this time…but surely it is huge. From Channel 29’s writeup and photo page:

KERNVILLE, Calif. — Evacuation orders were lifted Wednesday for residents of Riverkern and the Camp Owens juvenile probation facility as more than 1,100 firefighters battled the 16,000-acre “Bull Fire.”

Two people have been injured, eight homes have been destroyed and six outbuildings have burned, but crews appear to be making headway on the fire that has ravaged the Kern River Valley. The fire was 12 percent contained Wednesday night.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger also declared a state of emergency for Kern County as another wildfire burns 10 miles south of Tehachapi.

The ‘West Fire” as the Tehachapi fire is known, is up in the mountains to the east of Bakersfield, and I have been through that awesome area hundreds of times, mostly on my way to Vegas and all points east. That fire started Tuesday, the day I did a 7 hour round trip drive to San Diego to have a ‘come to jesus‘ meeting with my father. It didn’t go well to say the least…but digress…When I came over ‘The Grapevine‘ a 4100 ft mountain I must cross to get home to Bakersfield, I saw the huge smoke plume and I got a shiver down my spine..I knew where it was and that it was a new fire. It has so far, been the most devastating, although both fires are devastating for different reasons.

The Windmill Farm, which I have photographed a hundred times, and provides natural energy to the thousands of residents of Mojave an surrounding areas is also threatened. If the fires reaches that area the devastation will be calculated in the billions of dollars folks.

A total of 17,000 acres have been burned total from both fires. Again, from Channel 29’s Tehachapi fire photo page:

Firefighters say they’ve partially surrounded a wildfire near Tehachapi that has burned at least 30 homes and is threatening about 150 others.
The blaze 10 miles south of the city in the Old West Ranch community is one of two in Kern County that have forced about 2,300 people to evacuate homes.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger declared a state of emergency Tuesday night in Kern County as a result of the “Bull Fire” in the Kernville area and the “West Fire” near Tehachapi.

I am sad today, so much of natures beauty has been destroyed.  The Tehachapi fire happened in mid-day,while people were at work, and they lost their pets, horses and homes…everything. As an animal lover this devastated me. You can see both these fires from space they are so huge. A few photos below, courtesy of the victims that live in both areas.

Drawing water from the Kern River

Kernville Fire Above

Tehachapi fire above
Trying to save the windmill farm in Tehachapi Pass

Both fires are still burning folks…and its breaking my heart.

WikiLeaks can be this war’s Pentagon Papers…If we let them.

Some folks feel that since the journalists of the world, and the readers of said words, ignored Wikileaks release of the Iraq footage showing our soldiers using civilians as practice fodder for their heat-seeking missiles, there isn’t a snowballs chance in hell that this current release of over 90k of war doc’s known as the Afghan War Diary,will do squat to change the Afghan war. 

But it doesn’t have to be that way. The Pentagon Papers changed the entire Vietnam War. They changed the entire perspective of our nation towards the Vietnam War. The Afghan War Diary on WikiLeaks can do the same….its just up to the press. …and we the people, to keep this shit front and center in the national conversation.

We need to keep this information out there.,shock and awe the fuckers, such as…that thousands more civilians were killed than publicly reported just for fucking starters. That Pakistan loves and harbors the Taliban yet takes our millions of tax payer dollars…with smirks on their friggin faces. And like Iraq’s Fallujah which was a massacre of massive proportion, just for starters our government is doing the same fucking thing in Afghanistan.

I remember how the Ellsberg Papers, aka The Pentagon Papers, changed the entire Vietnam war…maybe your ass doesn’t…. but mutha fucka..I do. From The Rachel Maddow Show:

There is so much we can learn from the WikiLeaks Afghan War diary…we just have to open our eyes, our mouths…and light up our keyboards.. and ignore the Obama administrations attempt to minimize this information. Just…fucking…DO..IT!

WikiLeaks gives us the truth Obama’s administration won’t…

WikiLeaks has struck again!! The Obama administration responded with the following from the whores at Politico:

The White House responded swiftly and sharply to publication Sunday evening of more than 91,000 secret documents painting a bleak picture of the Afghanistan war, calling the leak “irresponsible” and saying that the source – the whistleblower website WikiLeaks — “opposes U.S. policy in Afghanistan.” WikiLeaks said its “Afghan War Diary” consists mostly of reports “written by soldiers and intelligence officers … describing lethal military actions involving the United States military.” WikiLeaks gave three news organizations – The New York Times, The (British) Guardian and Germany’s Der Spiegel – advance access to the “war logs” trove.

They oppose the Afghan War? Who the fuck doesn’t? Oh boo-fucking-hoo you lying, covering-up, war mongering bastards! Meanwhile…the NYT has run an article, entitled the War Log which they explain and validate here, based on Wikileak’s info. From the WikiLeak writeup:

25th July 2010 5:00 PM EST WikiLeaks has released a document set called the Afghan War Diary (AWD), an extraordinary compendium of over 91,000 reports covering the war in Afghanistan from 2004 to 2010.

The reports, while written by soldiers and intelligence officers mainly describing lethal military actions involving the United States military, also include intelligence information, reports of meetings with political figures, and related detail.

The document collection will shortly be available on a dedicated webpage

The reports cover most units from the US Army with the exception of most US Special Forces’ activities. The reports do not generally cover top-secret operations or European and other ISAF Forces operations.

We have delayed the release of some 15,000 reports from the total archive as part of a harm minimization process demanded by our source. After further review, these reports will be released, with occasional redactions, and eventually, in full, as the security situation in Afghanistan permits.

The data is provided in CSV and SQL formats, sorted by months, and also was rendered into KML mapping data.

It’s gonna be a doozie folks you can wade thorough it all HERE…fasten your friggin seatbelts, its gonna be a bumpy, horrendous ride. And Team Obama ain’t gonna like it and neither will the Bushies. Fuck em all I say..warmongering bags of shit.

Charles Sherrod- Civil Rights Hero

That jackass Breitbart obviously did not do his homework when he chose Shirley Sherrod to screw with. NO ONE has more civil rights cred than Shirley’s husband Charles Sherrod. From Joan Walsh’s Salon piece:

People who care about civil rights and racial reconciliation may eventually thank Andrew Breitbart for bringing Shirley Sherrod the global attention she deserves. Really. Her message of racial healing, her insight that the forces of wealth and injustice have always pit “the haves and the have-nots” against each other, whatever their race, is exactly what’s missing in today’s Beltway debates about race. What’s even more amazing, but almost completely unexplored in this controversy, is the historic civil rights leadership role of her husband, Charles Sherrod, an early leader of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, who served on the front lines of the nonviolent civil rights movement in the early 1960s.
Sherrod was SNCC’s first field secretary, and he co-founded the Albany movement after a student sit-in at the local bus station (to test a recently enacted desegregation law) led to a years-long campaign that ultimately involved Martin Luther King Jr. and the intervention of President John F. Kennedy. He traveled to the historic (and almost all-white) 1964 Democratic National Convention, when the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party fought for more black representation. He was jailed several times and stayed with SNCC until 1966, when Stokely Carmichael became chair and whites were expelled, but he’d already become more focused on his work in southwest Georgia than SNCC politics. Sherrod got his doctor of divinity degree from New York’s Union Theological Seminary, then returned to Albany to found the Southwest Georgia Independent Voters Project, then the agricultural cooperative New Communities Inc. He served 14 years on the Albany City Council, and he still lives there, known to civil rights movement veterans but obscure to the wider world, until his wife was attacked by the ignorant bullies of the right.

“We tend to think of civil rights workers as people who, it was an episode in their life before they went on and did something else,” says Clayborne Carson, SNCC historian and director of the Martin Luther King Jr. Research and Education Institute at Stanford. “But Sherrod is an exemplar of those people who didn’t leave the movement. They stayed, and they’re still fighting, to this day.” (I tried to reach Sherrod for this story, but not surprisingly, the voice-mail boxes I got to were full.)

It’s a wonderful writeup of Mr. Sherrod’s accomplishments and fucking damn hard work.  Joan interviews many of the writers that authored books about the times and the people that led the civil rights movement. Please take the time to read it.

Photo is Charles Sherrod and  Carl Braden, circa 1963, from here at Wisconsin

Oh and Andy Breitbart…fuck off and die you scum-sucking, lying piece of shit.