The cards would be mandatory for all "federal purposes," which include boarding an airplane or walking into a federal building, nuclear facility or national park, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff told the National Conference of State Legislatures last week. Citizens in states that don't comply with the new rules will have to use passports for federal purposes.
The second annual Rising Tide conference will be held August 24-26, 2007, at the New Orleans Yacht Club. This is a NOLA blogger-organized and supported conference featuring speakers, panels, breakout sessions, and other dialogs on the future of the city of New Orleans. This year's emphasis is on ground-level, grass-roots efforts. It has become clear to those of us in south Louisiana that we will have to watch the watchmen, as well as take the upper hand is setting the city back on track. To that end, there will be presentations on local politics and how to influence them, making civics sexy, sustainability, levee engineering, and media outreach...read on
Christy has a great post up that covers a lot of ground....As is my tradition---and a sad one it is---I will be posting videos when Katrina hit---the White House slept---thousands suffered and are still suffering...Here's another Youtube on Katrina...
If the Gray Lady didn't have enough problems battling industrywide woes, now she has Rupert Murdoch to worry about.
The media billionaire has made no secret of his desire to take aim at the New York Times once his News Corp. acquires Dow Jones & Co. and its flagship Wall Street Journal in a $5-billion deal expected to close this fall.
Murdoch said during an earnings conference call last week that he wanted the financial newspaper to have "more coverage of national, international and nonbusiness news . . . all to better compete with the New York Times and other national newspapers."
The Army on Tuesday censured a retired three-star general for a "perfect storm of mistakes, misjudgments and a failure of leadership" after the 2004 friendly-fire death in Afghanistan of Army Ranger Pat Tillman.
Army Secretary Pete Geren asked an Army review panel to decide whether Lt. Gen. Philip Kensinger should also have his rank reduced.
Geren told a Pentagon news conference that, while Kensinger was "guilty of deception" in misleading investigators, there was no intentional Pentagon cover-up of circumstances surrounding the former pro football player's death - at first categorized by the military as being from enemy fire.
"He failed to provide proper leadership to the soldiers under his administrative control. ... He let his soldiers down," Geren said. "General Kensinger was the captain of that ship, and his ship ran aground."
At least six other officers received lesser reprimands.
Geren said he considered recommending a court-martial for Kensinger but ruled it out.
What an insult to the Tillmans. What an insult to the intelligence of all of us. NO evidence of a cover-up? Please.
Jane at FDL recounts another failure of memory/failure to appear in the Tillman case, although it appears he's had a change of heart. VoteVets has an open letter to Bush and a petition you can sign.
State-sanctioned teams of computer hackers were able to break through the security of virtually every model of California's voting machines and change results or take control of some of the systems' electronic functions, according to a University of California study released Friday. The researchers "were able to bypass physical and software security in every machine they tested,'' said Secretary of State Debra Bowen, who authorized the "top to bottom review" of every voting system certified by the state.
Neither Bowen nor the investigators were willing to say exactly how vulnerable California elections are to computer hackers, especially because the team of computer experts from the UC system had top-of-the-line security information plus more time and better access to the voting machines than would-be vote thieves likely would have.
Bowen said in a telephone news conference Friday that the report is only one piece of information she will use to decide which voting systems are secure enough to use in next February's presidential primary election.
If she is going to decertify any of the machines, she must do it by Friday, six months before the Feb. 5 vote. Read more...
You can contact California Secretary of State, Debra Bowen here and let her know what you think of electronic voting machines.
At least twice, astronauts were allowed to fly after flight surgeons and other astronauts warned they were so drunk they posed a flight-safety risk, an aviation weekly reported Thursday, citing a special panel studying astronaut health.
The independent panel also found "heavy use of alcohol" before launch that was within the standard 12-hour "bottle-to-throttle" rule, according to Aviation Week & Space Technology, which reported the finding on its Web site.
A NASA official confirmed that the health report contains claims of alcohol use by astronauts before launch, but said the information is based on anonymous interviews and is unsubstantiated. The official didn't want to be named because NASA plans a news conference Friday to discuss the panel's findings.[..]
"That's not the ‘right stuff' as far as I'm concerned," said Bart Gordon, D-Tenn.
John mentioned the Alito confirmation in his post earlier about the SCOTUS decision, I looked for a more big picture consideration of this court. Certainly, it is one of the most divisive courts in memory, with a huge percentage of the decisions handed down with a 5-4 majority and the dissenting justices all vociferously objecting to the majority opinion. The American Consititution Society held a conference today to discuss the Roberts Court:
[T]his term we saw the Court announce the first amendment applies to corporations, in the Wisconsin Right to Life case, but not to students, in the Bong Hits 4 Jesus case. We saw the court announce that we should be deferential to state trial judges in criminal cases but not to democratically-elected local school boards in the schools cases. So if this is the birth of a new constitutional era, all I say is what an ugly baby.
As Tom Goldstein points out, in the eight years that Earl Warren presided as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, beginning in 1961, the Warren Court was responsible for the birth of the right to reproductive privacy, the beginning of meaningful school integration, the end of bans on interracial marriages, fundamental voting protections like "one person, one vote," and almost all of the rights which criminal defendants enjoy today.
If Earl Warren's Court could do so much in just eight years, the next decade could bring some very interesting times.
Republican Corruption Reigns Supreme -- Another Investigated Member Promoted by Republican Conference
Representative Tom Feeney (R-FL) became the second Republican Member of Congress under investigation to be promoted by the Republican Conference in less than a week.
"Apparently, the way to advance in the Republican conference is by being investigated for corruption. Isn't there a single Republican member who isn't corrupt who would be better suited for these jobs?” asked Jennifer Crider, Communications Director at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “Clearly, Republicans haven’t learned their lesson about holding their Members accountable for their wrong doing." Read more...
One would think the Grand Old Party would have learned a lesson from the thrashing they took in the '06 elections, but these people don't give up easily. After six years of unfettered power, they either don't realize or don't care how the public perceives their unethical behavior. Remember, with the GOP, it 'taint how you play the game, it's all about if you win or lose...
Wisconsin's SeniorCare saves $65 million from negotiating drug prices. So naturally, the feds want seniors on Part D, which doesn't negotiate drug prices. They say they're concerned that the program may not be "cost-neutral."
Gov. Jim Doyle's administration is reviewing how best to maintain prescription drug services to the elderly after the federal government rejected the state's request to extend the popular SeniorCare program, the governor said Wednesday.
Regardless, Doyle said at a news conference that the decision likely kills the program, forcing the 104,000 people on SeniorCare to use the Medicare Part D drug plan.[..]