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Friday, Dec 09th

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Investigative reporter Seymour Hersh describes 'executive assassination ring'

At a “Great Conversations” event at the University of Minnesota last night, legendary investigative reporter Seymour Hersh may have made a little more news than he intended by talking about new alleged instances of domestic spying by the CIA, and about an ongoing covert military operation that he called an “executive assassination ring.”

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Obama orders Bush signing statements review

resident Barack Obama on Monday ordered a review of George W. Bush's guidelines for implementing legislation passed by Congress, at the same time saying that he would employ his own version of how he wants the government to follow the law.

In a memo to senior government officials, Obama said they must check with Attorney General Eric Holder before relying on any of Bush's signing statements for guidance. Bush often issued a statement when signing a bill into law, and critics said the statements at times showed government officials how to circumvent the law if Bush disagreed with it on constitutional grounds.

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Obama's Middle-Class Task Force Has No Middle Class

Still, the middle class may have a better shot at making ends meet than at influencing the Middle Class Task Force. That's because no member of the Middle Class Task Force is actually middle class. While defining America's most beloved demographic group has never been an exact science, most academics agree that the term refers to anyone earning between $30,000 and $100,000 a year. (Median household income in the U.S. hovers around $50,000.) Every member of the President's task force - from Biden ($227,000) to Council of Economic Advisors chair Christina Romer ($172,000) to energy secretary Steven Chu ($191,000) - makes well over $150,000, putting them in the top 5% of wage earners.

TVNL Comment: So what's new? Welcome to America.

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John Dean: Bush almost became an ‘unconstitutional dictator’

Responding to the recent release of several legal justifications for President Bush’s most criticized policies, Dean summarized, “Reading these memos, you’ve gotta almost conclude we had an unconstitutional dictator. It’s pretty deadly and pretty serious, what’s in these materials.”

The memos, released by Obama’s Justice Department on Monday, outline possible methods for the president to ignore treaties and International laws, kidnap and torture American citizens and overrule the First Amendment to the Constitution which ensures freedom of speech and of the press.

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Feds probably won't charge anyone for destroying CIA tapes

Even though he has yet to complete his investigation, a federal prosecutor has already signaled that he is unlikely to indict any CIA employees for incinerating 92 secret interrogation tapes that purportedly show suspects being waterboarded.

Lost in the flood of reports about the CIA admitting the destruction of 92 interrogation tapes in a government legal filing were new and potentially devastating details. Sources close to an ongoing probe told The Washington Post that they expect no one at the CIA will be charged.

TVNL Comment: What are the people of this nation supposed to do with a government that is so corrupt that there is nobody left to prosecute the criminals? Americans may not have to the legal right to start a revolution, but it is clear that at this point if they want to preserve what is left of their liberty, they have an obligation to do so.

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Evidence of Bush-Rove Crimes Hidden Away in Southern Town?

Hidden away in the basement of a bank building on Broad Street here, there is a bank of computer servers containing all the evidence Congress and the courts need to investigate and prosecute all the crimes of the Bush years. That includes the mysteriously missing e-mail messages sent by Karl Rove from his White House office through the Republican National Committee e-mail addresses from his special Blackberry reserved for political activities.
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Gates: Obama wants all points of view, unlike Bush

As president, Bush was often dubbed "Incurious George" by his critics. In 2004, the Washington Post's Dan Froomkin noted that "while Bush is indeed assertive, he also often lacks curiosity and patience and has little interest in details." In 2005, the Associated Press reported that "Bush didn’t ask a single question during the final briefing before Katrina struck on Aug. 29." Even Bob Woodward's State of Denial, published in 2006, described Bush as "intellectually incurious."

It appears that Secretary Gates, in his far more diplomatic manner, may be conveying much the same assessment of his former boss.

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