Saturday, August 18, 2007

Will Michael Vick Accept A Plea Deal?

Two co-defendants in the Michael Vick dogfighting case pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge Friday in federal district court and agreed to "fully cooperate" with prosecutors building a case against Vick, the Atlanta Falcons quarterback.
Two co-defendants in the Michael Vick dogfighting case pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge Friday in federal district court and agreed to "fully cooperate" with prosecutors building a case against Vick, the Atlanta Falcons quarterback.

Purnell Peace of Virginia Beach and Quanis Phillips of Atlanta become the third co-defendants to plead guilty of conspiracy to travel interstate commerce in aid of unlawful activities and conspiring to sponsor a dog in an animal fighting venture.
The walls are closing in on Michael Vick as they should. Anyone who could participate in the sadistic cruelty outlined in these chagres does not deserve to walk free among us.
In April 2007, according to Phillips's statement, he, along with Peace and Vick, "tested" dogs by "putting the dogs through fighting sessions . . . to determine which animals were good fighters."

The three men "executed approximately eight dogs that did not perform well."

The dogs were killed "by various methods including hanging and drowning," according to the documents.
Real justice would be to put Mr. Vick in the ring with a pack of these dogs and see what happens. He didn't need the money so you have to wonder why he would take such a risk. It would appear that he is a sadistic low life. I hope the prosecutors will throw the book at him. I would love to see a plea deal fall apart and have him face a lengthly prison sentence.

His NFL contract should be cancelled and he should never grace the playing field again. It is the only response that should be accepted from the NFL.

Iranian Guards Vow to 'punch' U.S.

Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards said they would not bow to pressure and threatened to "punch" the U.S., in their first response to Washington's plan to list them as a terrorist organization, newspapers reported Saturday.
Local press in the Iranian capital of Tehran quoted Revolutionary Guards leader Gen. Yahya Rahim Safavi saying that he could understand Washington's ire toward the group because of their "leverage" against the U.S.

"America will receive a heavier punch from the guards in the future," he was quoted as saying in the conservative daily Kayhan. "We will never remain silent in the face of U.S. pressure and we will use our leverage against them."

There was no elaboration on what Safavi meant by the punch or the organization's "leverage."

Washington has accused the Guards of supporting militias and insurgent groups attacking U.S. forces in Iraq -- charges Iran denies.
The question I have is why is the Iran's Revolutionary Guard listed as a terrorist group by the Saudi Arabian government is not? Who is supplying the Sunni insurgents with the financial and military support to kill our troops? It is certainly not the Iranians. Where did 15 of the 19 hijackers come from on 9/11/01?

This is more smoke and mirrors from this administration that wants war with Iran. Am I the only one that finds it extremely hypocritical for Vice President Cheney to seek military action against Iran after doing business with this supposed terrorist country, in violation of U.S. law when he was the head of Halliburton?

The Iraq war is a business deal gone bad and now we are going to repeat the same mistake but with whose children? Certainly not the war mongers. Wake up America. It is time to rid our government of these criminals.

God's Warriors

This is truly frightening. How long until Christian extremists are as dangerous as the Muslim extremists. I would suggest watching this series from Christiane Amanpour starting Tuesday on CNN.

The goal is not a Democratic America but a Theocratic America. You ignore this extremist movement at your own peril.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Tony Snow To Quit - He Needs More Money

White House press secretary Tony Snow said Friday he'll leave before the end of the Bush presidency because he needs to make more money.
The 52-year-old Snow, the father of three children, earns $168,000 as an assistant to the president but made considerably more as a conservative pundit and syndicated talk-show host on Fox News Radio. He was named press secretary on April 26, 2006.

White House press secretaries in recent administrations have found the speechmaking circuit to be lucrative once they've stepped down. Snow was eagerly sought by Republican audiences before the elections last year, and in a break with tradition he made a number of fundraising speeches for GOP candidates.
Doesn't every family wish they had a $168,000.00 job that they could afford to leave for more money. This is why the Republican party is out of touch with the common man. They live on a different planet financially. Unfortunately too many middle class Americans vote based on where they hope to be and not where they actually are. What they don't realize is that voting based on where they hope to be makes it harder to actually get there.

Most families in the United States have children and struggle on much less than that. Mr. Snow has been battling cancer but that does not seem to have been a factor in his resignation. He is also privileged to have great health care. His illness would bankrupt many families. I wish him a complete recovery from his cancer. This is not a post to ridicule Tony Snow for this personal decision to leave but a post to point out the complete disconnect the current Republican party has with the middle and lower classes. If you think they can really feel your pain, you are kidding yourself.

Run On Banks in LA?

Countrywide Financials troubles have led to a run on its deposits.
Anxious customers of Countrywide Bank jammed its phone lines, branches and website after the nation's largest mortgage lender -- which owns the bank -- announced it was facing problems from a credit meltdown.

"Countrywide Financial Corp., the biggest home-loan company in the nation, sought Thursday to assure depositors and the financial industry that both it and its bank were fiscally stable," wrote the LA Times Friday. "And federal regulators said they weren't alarmed by the volume of withdrawals from the bank."

"The rush to withdraw money -- by depositors that included a former Los Angeles Kings star hockey player and an executive of a rival home-loan company -- came a day after fears arose that Countrywide Financial could file for bankruptcy protection because of a worsening credit crunch stemming from the sub-prime mortgage meltdown," the paper continued.

"At Countrywide Bank offices, in a scene rare since the U.S. savings-and-loan crisis ended in the early '90s, so many people showed up to take out some or all of their money that in some cases they had to leave their names," the Times added. "Bill Ashmore drove his Porsche Cayenne to Countrywide's Laguna Niguel office and waited half an hour to cash out $500,000, which he then wired to an account at Bank of America."

"It's because of the fear of the bankruptcy," Ashmore, president of Irvine's Impac Mortgage Holdings, which escaped bankruptcy itself recently by shutting down virtually all its lending and laying off hundreds of employees told the paper. "It's got my wife totally freaked out. I just don't want to deal with it. I don't care about losing 90 days' interest, I don't care if it's FDIC-insured -- I just want it out."
Reports like this are more reminiscent of Argentina than the United States. It is this type of unsubstantiated panic that could create a self fulfilling prophesy and drive the country into a recession.

Wall Street Bounces Back

As of 2:00 PM New York time all averages were sharply higher after the federal reserve lowered the discount rate. The discount rate is one that gets charged between banks. This was done to calm a very nervous financial system after the subprime mess came home to roost.

Will this be enough to calm the markets? A good indication will be closing numbers. If people are willing to hold stocks over the weekend when they have no control over financial announcements, then maybe we are past the worst of this downturn. I for one would not count on that.

California Ballot Initiative Could Stop A Democrat in the White House

Everyone needs to read this post from Senator Barbara Boxer.

This is the most dangerous attempted proposition ever proposed for California. This would apportion their electoral votes based on vote count. It would no longer be winner take all, but unless every state adopted the same proposition it would make it nearly impossible for a Democratic candidate to win the presidency in 2008 and possibly longer.

The electoral college needs to be eliminated and we need to go to a system of one person, one vote but it can not be in just one state. This is a real attempt to hijack democracy and one that the Republicans will push hard to pass. Every progressive in America needs to stay informed about this proposed ballot initiative and do everything in their power to see it fail. The Republicans can not win on merit so they want to resort to rigging the system. Spread the word especially to voters of California.

Fed Cuts Discount Rate

The Federal Reserve, reacting to concerns about the subprime lending crisis and the volatility in the financial markets that have resulted from it, announced Friday that it is cutting its so-called discount rate temporarily by a half percentage point, to 5.75 percent.

This move was unexpected and signaled the Federal Reserve was worried that a continuation of the credit crisis could push the economy into recession.

The Federal Reserve just recently felt that inflation was a greater risk to the economy than recession. The wild stock market gyrations have led them to conclude otherwise.
In another statement, the central bank indicated that "financial market conditions have deteriorated, and tighter credit conditions and increased uncertainty have the potential to restrain economic growth going forward."

The Fed added that "although recent data suggest that the economy has continued to expand at a moderate pace, the Federal Open Market Committee judges that the downside risks to growth have increased appreciably" and that the Fed was prepared to take more action if necessary.

Stock futures, which were initially trading lower Friday following another wild day Thursday, surged higher following the Fed's announcement.
Will this be enough to calm the markets? In the short term it should be but if more bad news comes out regarding the credit crisis due to the subprime mortgage disaster then all bets are off.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Iraqi Women Turning To Prostitution To Feed Their Children

I guess this is what democracy looks like.
The women are too afraid and ashamed to show their faces or have their real names used. They have been driven to sell their bodies to put food on the table for their children -- for as little as $8 a day.

"People shouldn't criticize women, or talk badly about them," says 37-year-old Suha as she adjusts the light colored scarf she wears these days to avoid extremists who insist women cover themselves. "They all say we have lost our way, but they never ask why we had to take this path."

A mother of three, she wears light makeup, a gold pendant of Iraq around her neck, and an unexpected air of elegance about her.

"I don't have money to take my kid to the doctor. I have to do anything that I can to preserve my child, because I am a mother," she says, explaining why she prostitutes herself.

Violence, increased cost of living, and lack of any sort of government aid leave women like these with few other options, according to humanitarian workers.
These people were better off under Saddam Hussein. The American people need to understand what a catastrophe this war of choice has brought to the Iraqi people. When the average American finally realizes that the Iraqi people traded one prison for another even worse then they will understand why the insurgency will never end.

We have destroyed a country and its people, then we wonder why they want to kill our soldiers. It is time to draft the young Republicans.

Karl Rove Is Delusional

Karl Rove is truly delusional and one has to wonder if his feelings for President Bush are more than just friendship.
In his interview with Rush Limbaugh this afternoon, Karl Rove claimed that the people criticizing Bush are “sort of elite, effete snobs who can’t hold a candle to this guy. What they don’t like about him is that he is common sense, that he is Middle America.” Limbaugh suggest that Bush critics are frustrated the the President “outsmarts ‘em.” Rove argued Bush is far more intelligent than people give him credit for, and is “one of the best-read people I’ve ever met” whose “passion is history.”
Hey Karl, if his passion was history wouldn't he have known the difference between Sunnis and Shiites? Wouldn't he have realized that Iraq would become this generations Vietnam?

People criticizing Bush are elitist snobs? Wow the 98% of the African-American population who don't care for President Bush have finally made it according to "Turd Blossom". President Bush is Middle America? I didn't realize that middle America all had millionaire parents who could buy them the Presidency. The only part of middle America that he represents is the group that does not believe in Evolution, has never travelled outside the country and is waiting for the rapture.

The relationship between Karl Rove and President Bush is clearly homo erotic.
Bush was wearing an Air National Guard flight jacket, blue jeans with a chewing tobacco tin in his pocket and cowboy boots and exuding “more charisma than any human being should be allowed to have at that age,” Rove recalled.
Karl Rove was willing to do anything to get this man elected and the entire country is paying for his unrequited love.

Report from Patraeus To Be Done In Private?

The Bush administration will do anything it can to avoid telling the American people the truth about Iraq. First we learned that the anticipated report due out in September will not be written by General Petraeus but by the White House. What that says is that the report will be a political one and have no basis in truth. You can be guaranteed that the report will talk glowingly of the success of the surge while ignoring the daily bombings, political turmoil and lack of reconstruction.

Now we learn that the Bus administration does not want General Petraeus or Ambassador Crocker to testify in public.
Senior congressional aides said yesterday that the White House has proposed limiting the much-anticipated appearance on Capitol Hill next month of Gen. David H. Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker to a private congressional briefing, suggesting instead that the Bush administration's progress report on the Iraq war should be delivered to Congress by the secretaries of state and defense.

White House officials did not deny making the proposal in informal talks with Congress, but they said yesterday that they will not shield the commanding general in Iraq and the senior U.S. diplomat there from public congressional testimony required by the war-funding legislation President Bush signed in May. "The administration plans to follow the requirements of the legislation," National Security Council spokesman Gordon Johndroe said in response to questions yesterday.
I really do not think the country can wait until 1/20/09 to get rid of these incompetent criminals.

Army Suicides at 26 Year High

Ninety-nine U.S. soldiers killed themselves last year, the highest rate of suicide in the Army in 26 years, a new report says.
More than one out of four soldiers who committed suicide did so while serving in Iraq or Afghanistan, according to a report scheduled to be released Thursday. Iraq was the most common deployment location for U.S. soldiers who either attempted suicide or committed suicide.

The report, which The Associated Press obtained ahead of its public release, said the 99 confirmed suicides among active duty soldiers compared to 88 in 2005 and was the highest raw number since the 102 suicides reported in 1991, the year of the Persian Gulf War, when there were more soldiers on active duty.
This is the result of constant and extended tours. How can anyone think that seeing all the death and destruction that our soldiers see on a daily basis would not have severe psychological consequences?

The psychological welfare of these men were never considered when the President CHOSE war. The treatment of these men is a national disgrace whether it is the lack of body armor or the cuts in veterans funding. How can anyone really say with a straight face that the Republicans support the troops.

Housing Starts At Decade Low

Housing starts and permits both fall more than forecasts as builders pull back from troubled market.
Housing starts and permits both fell to the lowest levels in more than a decade, as the latest readings on the battered housing and homebuilding markets came in below expectations Thursday.

Housing starts fell 6.1 percent to an annual rate of 1.38 million in July from a revised 1.47 million rate in June. Economists surveyed by had forecast starts would fall to a 1.41 million pace in June.

The latest reading is the lowest level of starts since January 1997 and is down nearly 21 percent from year-earlier levels.

Starts of single-family homes fell even more sharply, dropping 7.3 percent to just over a 1 million annual rate, the lowest since December 1996 and the second lowest level in more than 12 years.
What we are witnessing is a meltdown of our housing market which has kept the economy afloat. I do not understand those who keep saying that the broader economy is just fine. How could it be when housing has been the strongest economic component? The problem with the housing market is that it is just like the dot com boom, it is not real.

The subprime mortgage debacle allowed people to buy homes at inflated prices that they could not afford. The supposed financial experts could not see this coming? I could see this coming and I am not an expert although I play one on this blog.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Bush Administration Sides With Companies Over Investors

Is there anyone who still thinks the Bush administration cares at all about regular people?
Investors seeking redress from third parties accused of aiding companies to defraud shareholders suffered a blow on Wednesday when the Bush administration came down against the plaintiffs' bar and in favour of companies in a landmark case heading to the Supreme Court.

The development is also a blow for Enron investors who have sued the defunct energy company's bankers - including Merrill Lynch, Barclays and Credit Suisse – for allegedly helping Enron executives carry out the accounting fraud that eventually destroyed the company.

It is an awkward development for Securities and Exchange Commission chairman Christopher Cox, who had urged the US solicitor general to side with investors in the case, known as Stoneridge vs. Scientific Atlanta.
This is quite a complicated issue but any company that helped another defraud the public should be held to account if it can be proved in a court of law. This decision makes Wall Street that much closer to Las Vegas.

Income Inequality In Asia Is Growing

Income inequality in emerging Asia is heading towards Latin American levels.

Brazil has long been considered the country with the greatest disparity between rich and poor. It seems they may some new competition from China. While the divide has been shrinking in Brazil for the past decade, it has been growing in China and the two countries may actually now have the same divide between rich and poor.

I decided to write about this story because the death of the middle class is not just happening in America. We must examine the role of the multi-national corporations and their endless quest for ever greater profits. It will take worldwide action to stop this growing and very dangerous trend.

U.S. Launches Offensive In Tora Bora

Isn't this a few years too late?
Hundreds of U.S.-led troops have launched an offensive against al-Qaeda and Taliban militants in eastern Afghanistan, while a bomb attack near the capital killed three German nationals, officials said Wednesday.

The offensive involving ground troops and airstrikes in Tora Bora region of eastern Nangarhar province is targeting "hundreds of foreign fighters" who are using dug-in fighting positions, said coalition spokeswoman Capt. Vanessa Bowman.
We really need to wonder why this and why now? According to reports the Taliban recently have abandoned training camps in the region and some have speculated it is because of an imminent attack on western interests.

Could the Democratic approval of the domestic spying bill been the result of some sort of intelligence that something may happen? If they were given intelligence that an attack was highly possible, they would not have wanted to be seen as inhibiting any effort to stop an attack.

Insurgents Regrouping Outside Baghdad

Insurgents are regrouping outside of Baghdad due to the "surge".
Tuesday's four suicide truck bombers struck nearly simultaneously, killing more people than any other concerted attack since Nov. 23, when 215 people were killed by mortar fire and five car bombs in Baghdad's Shiite Muslim enclave of Sadr City.

Some 300 people were wounded in the attacks on the Yazidis, an ancient religious community, said Dakhil Qassim, the mayor of the nearby town of Sinjar.

The carnage dealt a serious blow to U.S. efforts to pacify the country with just weeks before top U.S. commander Gen. David Petraeus and U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker are to deliver a pivotal report to Congress amid a fierce debate over whether to begin withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq.

U.S. officials believe extremists are attempting to regroup across northern Iraq after being driven from strongholds in and around Baghdad, and commanders have warned they expected Sunni insurgents to step up attacks in a bid to upstage the report.
Is anyone surprised at this development other than the Bush administration? The "surge" does nothing to protect any other area than Baghdad. According to the counter insurgency manual written by General Petraeus you would need one soldier for every 40 residents. With a population of 22 million it would require a force of 550,000 in order to stabilize the country. The "surge" can not be successful with the current troop levels and General Petraeus understands this. The issue becomes how to get out without leaving a genocide in its place. I am not sure that is possible now.

The most tragic consequences of the Iraq War are yet to be felt. In the end more people will die as a result of this war than died at the hands of Saddam Hussein. Now that is what I call progress.

Utah Mine Owner and His Political Clout

I have avoided discussing this issue while the miners were still trapped inside but this story needs to be told. This story shows how political clout trumps workers safety and ultimately workers lives.
In 2003, when safety inspectors ordered the owner of a Utah coal mine where six workers have been trapped for more than a week to shut down one of his Ohio operations because of repeated safety problems, local press reports say he did not hesitate to flex his political muscle to get the inspectors off his back.

"I will have your jobs. They are gone. The clock is ticking," Young quotes Murray as saying at the meeting.

The notes then go on to say Murray dropped the name of a pair of powerful Republicans in order to underscore his own political clout.

"Mitch McConnell calls me one of the five finest men in America, and last time I checked he was sleeping with your boss," Murray told the inspectors, referring to the senior GOP senator from Kentucky. The quote was repeated in an Oct. 2006 Lexington (Ky.) Herald-Leader article on McConnell's political influence.

McConnell - the Republican leader in the Senate - is married to Labor Secretary Elaine Chao, who oversees MSHA. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, McConnell has received $176,800 in campaign donations from mining interests since 2001.
Mitch McConnell is up for election in 2008. This issue must be used as a club to bludgeon him. Corporate money in politics is destroying this country and putting workers safety in jeopardy. When will the American people say enough is enough and demand reforms? There are six people trapped underground for one week who most likely lost their lives because the mine owner has friends in high places.

Robert Murray, the owner of Murray Energy has donated extensively to Republican causes and a quick look up on Open Secrets reveals a who's who in Republican politics. This is exactly what is wrong with the American political system.

Economist Warns Of Consumer-led Recession

The U.S. economy may be on the brink of its first consumer-led recession in nearly two decades, according to Merrill Lynch economist David Rosenberg.
"There are plenty of signs now suggesting that we may be in the early stages of a consumer-led recession for the first time in 17 years," Mr. Rosenberg warned in a report to clients.

"The future is very likely in the hands of the consumer on Main Street, USA, and the latest signposts are not encouraging."

He and other economists point to several alarm bells for the world's largest economy: Banks are tightening consumer lending standards, auto sales have slumped to a nine-year low and key retailers keep missing their sales and profit targets.
It is nice to see the economists saying what I have been saying for months. Unless the government does something to stem the tide of foreclosures as a result of the subprime mortgage debacle, the economy will go into recession.

It will take sound fiscal policy to avoid a deep and devastasting recession. Is there anyone who has confidence in a team assembled by the Bush administration? I know I do not. They have shown their incompetence at every turn and I for one would not trust my savings to these people.

What is the Bush legacy on the economy for everyday Americans? It is record foreclosures, record consumer debt, record deficits after inheriting record surpluses and stagnant wages. Only the Bush administration would consider that success.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Four Suicide Bombings Kill 175 in Iraq

They keep telling yourself "the surge is working" but the facts certainly don't support the rhetoric.
Four suicide bombers struck nearly simultaneously at communities of a small Kurdish sect in northwestern Iraq late Tuesday, killing at least 175 people and wounding 200 more, Iraqi military and local officials said.

The death toll was the highest in a concerted attack since Nov. 23, when 215 people were killed by mortar fire and five car bombs in Baghdad's Shiite Muslim enclave of Sadr City. And it was most vicious attack yet against the Yazidis, an ancient religious community in the region whose members are considered infidels by some Muslims.

The bombings came as extremists staged other bold attacks: leveling a key bridge outside Baghdad and abducting five officials from an Oil Ministry compound in the capital in a raid using gunmen dressed as security officers. Nine U.S. soldiers also were reported killed, including five in a helicopter crash.
The amount of death and destruction in Iraq is staggering and to think we chose this war. Idiot boy had a score to settle and our dead soldiers and the scores of dead Iraqis are collateral damage from his vendetta.

The United States has opened Pandora's Box in Iraq and it doesn't appear that box will be shut anytime soon. We poured the gasoline and lit the match and destroyed our standing in the world in the process. Unfortunately even if the U.S. was to end the occupation the civil strife would continue. Again I must reiterate that elections have consequences and electing this worthless fool as President will have reverberations long after he has left office and gone back to his ranch to ride his bike.

Watch This And Then Lets Discuss

OK so according to this stupid bitch we need to be accepting of poisonous food and lead in toys in order to keep prices low. Does she realize that poisonous food usually results in trips to the hospital and expensive health care bills. I wonder if she has any children and if she does if she would like them to chew on some lead painted toys. Is this woman for real? This is what passes for an expert? Then they wonder why people are so stupid when it comes to economics.

Markets Get Hammered Once Again

Today was another dismal day in the U.S. stock markets as all the averages suffered major declines.
Stocks slumped for the fourth straight session Tuesday on fresh worries about the mortgage and credit markets and disappointing profit forecasts from two big retailers, Home Depot and Wal-Mart Stores.
As I said this morning as Wal-Mart goes, so goes the nation. I truly believe we are seeing the formation of the perfect economic storm.

The market is now down over 7% from its high so at the very least we are in a market correction. How low it will go is the question. The market doesn't seem to follow any fundamentals at this point. The wild fluctuations are evidence of that. The stock market has become Las Vegas.

As Wal-Mart Goes............

Wal-Mart is warning about struggles ahead as its profits will be below forecasts.
Wal-Mart has already increased its price "rollbacks" by more than 20 percent this year over last year, but the discount giant is still struggling to get its mostly lower-income consumers to shop a little bit more at its stores.
How can they shop more when they have no money? Wal-Mart is partially responsible for the stagnant wages that have been evident since 2001. Now the chickens are coming home to roost. What makes these large employers, especially in retail, believe that they can provide lousy pay and benefits and then expect these same people to just keep shopping? When was the last time you were able to squeeze blood from a stone.

Since I started this site I have been calling for a true economic slowdown. You do not need to be a economic genius to realize that a negative savings rate along with rising prices and stagnant wages will lead to economic disaster.

We have been heading towards this perfect storm since 2001 and now it appears that all the pieces are in place for some real economic pain. Unfortunately it is not the company heads who will feel the pain but the lower and middle classes who have been struggling for years. Lets hope that people are smart enough to realize that the economic policies of this administration have led us to where we are now. If people finally "get it", the Republican party will be the minority for at least a generation.

Cheney in 94: No Additional Casualties Were Worth Going To Baghdad

So what happened between 1994 and 2003 that made the additional casualties worth it? These talking head fools on the nightly news will be spouting their usual 9/11 garbage. The problem with that argument is that Iraq was not involved with 9/11 and that is a provable fact. Could it be that Dick Cheney was the head of Halliburton from 1995-2000 and still had a deferred compensation deal when the war started?

Now you should understand why additional deaths are necessary now but not then. No bid contracts for Halliburton resulted in higher stock prices and made the Vice President a very wealthy man. Now we should all understand why he chose himself as Vice President to this mental midget we call President Bush.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Foreclosures, Ballot Initiatives and the 2008 Race

I was listening to 7 Days In America on Air America Radio when I heard Bob Shrum say this election was going to be about national security. My first thought was what was Bob Shrum still doing talking about politics. He has been involved with 8 Presidential campaigns and all were losers. His opinions are about as valid as Britney Spears.

This next election will be partially about national security but any campaign that ignores the economic realities of today will be the losing campaign. One of the major economic issues will the subprime mortgage debacle and the resulting record number of foreclosures. This will be especially true in two very important states for the 2008 election, Ohio and Florida.

Of the 500 zip codes with the highest level of foreclosures 72 are in Florida and 49 are in Ohio. That ranks these states as the number two and three in the country behind California. That will cause the foreclosure crisis to extend to many other parts of the economy throughout the country but most specifically in these states.

Is there anyone that doesn't understand that the downturn in the housing market will affect the construction industry, the home remodeling industry and every other industry that depends on a healthy housing market? So although you may not be having difficulty making your mortgage payments you will be especially affected in these states with lower home values and lower overall economic activity.

This same scenario is also present in Colorado, Nevada and Arizona where they are also seeing sharp increases in foreclosures. Lower home values will affect the "wealth factor" which is how many people judge whether or not to make that big ticket purchase. If you feel wealthy then you will spend, if suddenly you see your net worth shrinking as the result of lower home prices, then you will be less likely to make the purchase. It is this wealth factor that I believe will make Ohio and possibly Florida vote Democratic in 2008.

I believe the Republican party also believes this so they are trying to change the allocation of electoral votes in California. . With one ballot initiative they could recapture the votes they lose in Ohio. Do you think that is a coincidence?

Our economy is hanging by a thread and the Republicans understand that. They also know they will be blamed for the eceonomic downturn that is now beginning to surface. If you can't win on the merits then you cheat. That is the Republican mantra. It is up to the progressive community to stop this legal attempt to steal the 2008 election.

Karl Rove Is Resigning

Karl Rove is resigning "to spend more time with his family".
Karl Rove, President Bush's close friend and chief political strategist, plans to leave the White House at the end of August, joining a lengthening line of senior officials heading for the exits in the final 1 1/2 years of the administration.

On board with Bush since the beginning of his political career in Texas, Rove was nicknamed "the architect" and "boy genius" by the president for designing the strategy that twice won him the White House. Critics call Rove "Bush's brain."
Karl Rove is an evil little man with no scruples. His leaving the White House must be more than just his desire to spend more time with his family.

He has been involved with every scandal in the Bush White House. He was nearly indicted for the outing of Valerie Plame. He was intimately involved in the U.S. Attorney firings and is in general considered a snake politically. The War in Iraq would have never taken place if Karl Rove did not see political advantage to such an undertaking. The death and destruction caused by this war were acceptable to make President Bush a war President.

The unfortunate consequence of Mr. Rove's political calculations is that they were wrong. His advice has given us the most unpopular President in a generation, an endless war, huge budget deficits and a cynicism that hasn't been seen in politics since Watergate. That is the true legacy of Karl Rove.

The President has a nickname for Rove and that is "turd blossom". I would drop the "blossom". Karl Rove is truly a turd. Look for this freak to show up soon in the Republican clown car of 2008. Anyone want to wager a guess on which campaign he will join? My money is on Fred Thompson.