Tuli Can't Stop Talking

These are just my thoughts on contemporary issues and an attempt to open up a dialogue.

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Location: New York City

A citizen who cares deeply about the United States Constitution and the Rule of Law.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Everything that Changed Became Clear after August 29, 2005.

As my two readers know I believe that the day everything changed was December 12, 2000 when the SCOTUS announced the end of the rule of law. This was when the Supreme Court selected for POTUS a person who does not believe in Government and thus does not believe in the efficacy of governing.

Then of course, there was September 11, 2001 when the President, announced along with most politicians, that the world had changed. And yes, the attacks on the World Trade Center and the United States were a wake up call. But I think that the consequences of the December 12, 2000 decision was most exemplified by August 29, 2005 and this administration’s response both prior and in real time to Katrina, and the destruction of the City of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast.

As John Biguenet, a resident of New Orleans, writing in the New York Times, makes clear this was not a natural disaster in New Orleans, but a man made disaster, and a policy disaster by this administration. This administration decided to take the monies allocated for the Levee’s repair and infrastructure upgrade by the Clinton Administration and to reallocate those monies to terrorism. And as we all know now the damage done to NOLA, unlike the rest of the Gulf Coast, was due to the failure of the levees not necessarily Katrina.

So, yes folks the day the world changed was December 12, 2000 and the day it became clear for all the world to see was August 29, 2005. Because on that fateful day in December an administration was put in place that not only didn’t believe that government could be effective, they believe that government shouldn’t exist and in fact should be drowned in the bathtub. And so New Orleans and the Gulf Coast continue to drown.

It has been one year since our President stood in Jackson Square and pronounced the largest reconstruction effort in America. To date the reconstruction has been very slow. The majority of those displaced can not come back. Why would anyone come back to a city that has unreliable electricity and little or no potable water. There appears to be little or no planning for the revitalization of the cities infrastructure which is necessary before you can decide to come home and rebuild.

Yes folks, this administration has managed to accomplish that which no other administration has done, it is complicit in the destruction of a major City in the United States of America.

What an accomplishment!

Does this seem like something to commemorate?

Watch this video and then think about whether New Orleans and this administration will ever recover.

Yes indeed, everything has changed!

Do you truly believe that the administration that allowed this to happen and continues to look the other way is capable of providing any kind of security to this country?

Just asking and I didn't even brining up Iraq!

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

French Weapons of Mass Destruction.

Cheese is it dangerous to our health? This is a truly wacky!

As a latte drinking cheese eating surrender monkey I loved this video brought to us via John at America Blog.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Singing A Song For You!

As everyone who knows me knows, I am so in love with music and particularly the classics. So, it is no surprise that I love Leon Russell and in particular, “Singing this Song for You.” I have a special place in my heart for this song as it touches on a relationship that dates from the late sixities with one of the most special women I have ever known. She and her family changed my life and I will be forever thankful to her and them. And thinking of them led me to peruse the net for this song.

Now two of my favorite versions and renditions are by Morgana King and Aretha. Neither of which are available for download on the web. That said, a classic is a classic, and there are many renditions of it out on the web for our reminiscing, viewing and listening pleasure. Many of these I haven’t heard or seen before and I was so pleased to discover them in my search for this classic.

So, if you love or even like this Russell classic, you should click on these links because you will not be disappointed and they get better as they go along. That of course is only my opinion, but as Blanche W. Cook would say it is “My opinion and a damned good opinion it is.”

The first version is by Usher. I had no real idea who he was, as I am deficient in pop culture knowledge, though I consistently score 90 or better on the New Yorker Quiz on George W. Bush (well I guess you know what I am focused on), but after watching and listening to his version of this song I am impressed. As you will see mostly I have found this to be a song for women to sing, but he did a terrific job and I will have to pay more attention to him in the future.

Next I have to say I was quite taken a back by Christina Aquilaera’s version with Herbie Hancock. Herbie is a favorite of mine from the sixties so I was quite taken with this teaming up. She really has a very good voice and with his styling this is a really credible version of a jazz rendition.

And just in case anyone was wondering just how “White” I am I offer up the “Michelle Kwan skates to Natalie Cole version.” Yes, folks I love Figure Skating and I think that Michelle Kwan is one of the best in what is essentially a white bread sport. So, there it is out. Natalie Cole’s version of our song for the day isn’t as soulful as it could be and I think that her father would have done a better job at it, but it is really quite good as the bar for this family is quite high. And as for the white bread skating it is as good as it gets. So, there!

Then we get to the Queen of Disco, and she is leaving disco behind and doing the bejesus out of this song. Donna Summer should have spent more time singing her heart out instead of being the disco queen. She has a tremendous voice and her unadulterated voice should have been heard by more of us. This version makes the case.

And what a surprise I had when I found this version by one of my favorites Ms. Nancy Wilson. Watching her styling I am reminded of Phyllis Hyman and why she idolized Ms. Nancy. This rendition reminds me of why I love Ms. Wilson and miss Phyllis so much.

Then we have the classic being sung by the classic, Ms. Gladys Knight. Watching Oprah’s face while Gladys sings this song, to her it seems, is just so wonderful and touching. And Gladys delivers as one would expect.

Now, I have left this version for last. I have been a Whitney Houston fan since I first saw her with her mother Cissy when Whitney was 13 years old. It was in a very small club on the Upper West Side, and it was very up close and personal. Cissy and Whitney sang the BeeGees hit “Staying Alive,” and let me tell you, you haven’t heard this song until you have heard it sung by them. I was totally blown away and hadn’t gotten the meaning of the song until I heard them do it. So, it breaks my heart what life has brought Whitney and it is with that in mind that I watched this video and cried. She is one of the greatest talents of our time and my heart breaks for her and her family. When she sings “Singing this Song for You,” your heart will break as well. Lord knows she means it!

For those of you who have stayed and taken this musical journey with me, thank you. As I said at the beginning this song has special meaning for me and so I dedicate this post to Sharlene, who I love and who has changed my life in so many ways.

I can’t thank her enough and I haven’t.

Thank you Sharlene.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Maynard Ferguson


1928 – 2006


Well, Brad is right I went to the sales at Saratoga. Though for the first time I only went for the first day. I have been having trouble with one of my legs and the stress of running around and standing made it impossible for me to reconnoiter at a sale that I found totally uninspiring.

I was however totally inspired by a filly, hip #52, a Giant’s Causeway out of Flat Fleet Feet. So, how disappointed was I when she turned up in the walking ring? Totally disappointed would be an understatement. She looked like the least likely New York Bred to be purchased on the weekend. And keep in mind that we are mostly interested in New York Breds.

Though I was only there for the first day of the sale, there was not one filly or colt who made my heart go pitty pat. Not even one who made me stand up and take notice and this is after going though the catalogue with a fine tooth comb. Even hip #52 with all of that breeding went for a paltry $350K. And I found her to be the most exciting entry in the catalogue.

But, hey, what do I know I wouldn’t have spent $16 million on the Green Monkey!

Update: I did however have a wonderful time at Saratoga. The weather was the best ever in at least 10 years. It was for the most part in the 70’s, with little or no humidity, and we had only one day of rain which lead to NYRA taking the races off the turf so that our DG could get in as an MTO entry. Of course he was in over his head and the Tagg horse won without much competition. But, for the most part our horses consistently picked up checks and we made some money. We still haven’t won a race this Saratoga meet but we have done quite well for a small owner (and we were the lead owner at Aqueduct in the 2006 Spring Meet) and the meet isn’t over yet.

So, though I didn’t fall in love with a yearling this year, I did have a great time at the Spa.

Oh, and did I mention how wonderful the dining was? If you get a chance please try the restaurant at the Golf Course, SARGO, and let us not forget the Wine Bar. All in all, it was a great vacation, and meet, and I had a wonderful time, even if the sale fell flat for me and I am not exactly looking for the next Green Monkey to make my day. As to the sales, on to Timonium and Ocala!

In the Travers: Go Bernardini, Cara Rafaela’s baby boy!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Katrina: Lest We Forget!

As the year anniversary approaches, and a large swath of New Orleans lies in waste, where exactly is the “Moral Values Crowd?” That the United States of America could sit by and let an iconic city die is despicable and speaks to the morals and values of this country, not ot mention the mealy mouthed hypocrites who merely speak platitudes about “Homeland Security.”

Lest we forget, Scout has made another film about Katrina and it is up on Firedoglake. Once again my heart is breaking. That this is part of our history is heartbreaking not only for the Gulf Coast but for the moral fiber of our country.

This can not be washed away!

I am ashamed for our country, aren't you?

Thank you Scout for reminding us of our responsibility and never letting us forget.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Lieberman has Right-Wing Neocon Support: WTF!

So, Joe, that great Democrat, has some very pumped up supporters. Unfortunately those supporters are right-wing neocons. What with all that kind of support it boggles the mind that the pundits wonder why the Democratic electorate might be a little unsupportive of Joe’s candidacy!

Go read Glenn. He lays it out and does it in a way that is so clear and informed that every beltway pundit should be ashamed of themself.

Go Ned.

The End of the U.S. Constitution and the American Dream!

The Bush administration and the Rubber-Stamp Congress have now so clearly stepped over the line that only an idiot, terrorist or fascist would approve.

These people hate this country and what the U.S. Constitution and America stands for:

A draft Bush administration plan for special military courts seeks to expand the reach and authority of such "commissions" to include trials, for the first time, of people who are not members of al-Qaeda or the Taliban and are not directly involved in acts of international terrorism, according to officials familiar with the proposal.

The plan, which would replace a military trial system ruled illegal by the Supreme Court in June, would also allow the secretary of defense to add crimes at will to those under the military court's jurisdiction. The two provisions would be likely to put more individuals than previously expected before military juries, officials and independent experts said.

The draft proposed legislation, set to be discussed at two Senate hearings today, is controversial inside and outside the administration because defendants would be denied many protections guaranteed by the civilian and traditional military criminal justice systems.

Under the proposed procedures, defendants would lack rights to confront accusers, exclude hearsay accusations, or bar evidence obtained through rough or coercive interrogations. They would not be guaranteed a public or speedy trial and would lack the right to choose their military counsel, who in turn would not be guaranteed equal access to evidence held by prosecutors.

Detainees would also not be guaranteed the right to be present at their own trials, if their absence is deemed necessary to protect national security or individuals.

An early draft of the new measure prepared by civilian political appointees and leaked to the media last week has been modified in response to criticism from uniformed military lawyers. But the provisions allowing a future expansion of the courts to cover new crimes and more prisoners were retained, according to government officials familiar with the deliberations.


Some independent experts say the new procedures diverge inappropriately from existing criminal procedures and provide no more protections than the ones struck down by the Supreme Court as inadequate. John D. Hutson, the Navy's top uniformed lawyer from 1997 to 2000, said the rules would evidently allow the government to tell a prisoner: "We know you're guilty. We can't tell you why, but there's a guy, we can't tell you who, who told us something. We can't tell you what, but you're guilty."

Bruce Fein, an associate deputy attorney general during the Reagan administration, said after reviewing the leaked draft that "the theme of the government seems to be 'They are guilty anyway, and therefore due process can be slighted.' " With these procedures, Fein said, "there is a real danger of getting a wrong verdict" that would let a lower-echelon detainee "rot for 30 years" at Guantanamo Bay because of evidence contrived by personal enemies.


The provisions are closely modeled on earlier plans for military commissions, which the Supreme Court ruled illegal two months ago in a case brought by Salim Ahmed Hamdan, a Yemeni imprisoned in the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. "It is not evident why the danger posed by international terrorism, considerable though it is, should require, in the case of Hamdan, any variance from the courts-martial rules," the court's majority decision held.


"Basically, this is trying to overrule the Hamdan case," said Neal K. Katyal, a Georgetown University law professor who was Hamdan's lead attorney.


The admission of hearsay is a serious problem, said Tom Malinowski, director of the Washington office of Human Rights Watch, because defendants might not know if it was gained through torture and would have difficulty challenging it on that basis. Nothing in the draft law prohibits using evidence obtained through cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment that falls short of torture, Malinowski said.


To secure a death penalty under the draft legislation, at least five jurors must agree, two fewer than under the administration's earlier plan. Courts-martial and federal civilian trials require that 12 jurors agree.

This is a Wiemar moment folks! The mere fact that anyone would consider extending this to anyone “The Decider” decides is an “enemy combatant,” sans connection to terrorism, and that the SecDef could make up what crimes are relevant as he goes along is repugnant and under Hamden unconstitutional. By proposing this legislation it is clear that this administration does not take its sworn allegiance to the U.S. Constitution and respect for the United States founding principals seriously.

Well, that is an understatement!

So now, calling Oliver Stone, do you suppose there is any connection to those detention centers that Halliburton was given the contract to build?

Here is how MarketWatch described the contract:

HAL32.87, -0.84, -2.5% ) , said Tuesday it has been awarded a contingency contract from the Department of Homeland Security to supports its Immigration and Customs Enforcement facilities in the event of an emergency. The maximum total value of the contract is $385 million and consists of a 1-year base period with four 1-year options. KBR held the previous ICE contract from 2000 through 2005. The contract, which is effective immediately, provides for establishing temporary detention and processing capabilities to expand existing ICE Detention and Removal Operations Program facilities in the event of an emergency influx of immigrants into the U.S., or to support the rapid development of new programs, KBR said. The contract may also provide migrant detention support to other government organizations in the event of an immigration emergency, as well as the development of a plan to react to a national emergency, such as a natural disaster, the company said.

And what could those new programs be that are so necessary to round up and detain anyone under this new proposed legislation?

LET ME REPEAT: to support the rapid development of new programs, KBR said. The contract may also provide migrant detention support to other government organizations in the event of an immigration emergency, as well as the development of a plan to react to a national emergency, such as a natural disaster, the company said.

This is a picture that is getting scarier and scarier. This is all being promoted in the name of National Security. That anyone would believe that this administration is going to provide them with security and safety from the Terrorists is obviously delusional. This administration apparently is willing to take those unconnected to terrorism and has plans to detain them due to a national emergency under the rapid development of new programs.

What exactly could the rapidly developing new programs be?

Use your imagination.

Freedom and Democracy, not so much! Securing the power of those currently in power, pretty much!

Aside from Dick’s obvious War Profiteering motive that is!

As to the American public’s motive, please remember Ben Franklin when he said, “Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

December 12, 2000 really did announce the end of the rule of law.

Like I said, calling Oliver Stone, but even he is right sometimes.

I spend a lot of time trying to connect the dots and these dots are alarming. They even have the alarmist in me alarmed!