Friday, August 15, 2008
Sunday, May 18, 2008
Friday, May 16, 2008
Monday, April 28, 2008
O’Reilly Attacks Moyers For Interviewing Rev. Wright: They Should ‘Take A Long Vacation, Perhaps In Iran’»
On PBS’s Bill Moyers Journal last night, Moyers interviewed Sen. Barack Obama’s (D-IL) former pastor, Jeremiah Wright, whose controversial remarks created a political storm last month.
Reacting to advance excerpts of the interview, Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly attacked Moyers on his show last night, calling him a “far left PBS guy” who is “extreme” and “pathetic.” At the end of his Talking Points Memo segment, O’Reilly suggested that Moyers and Wright should “take a long vacation, perhaps in Iran.”
Later in the show, when O’Reilly asked former House Speaker Newt Gingrich if he could “figure” Moyers out, Gingrich called Moyers “a hard left sympathizer for anybody who dislikes America”:
O’REILLY: Can you figure this guy out, Moyers?
GINGRICH: Sure. Bill Moyers is a hard left sympathizer for anybody who dislikes America. And Reverend Wright’s sort of his perfect interview. He doesn’t lay — from what I’ve seen so far and the things that I’ve read tonight from the interview tonight, he doesn’t lay a glove on him.
Closing his discussion of Moyers with Gingrich, O’Reilly previewed a segment with Bernard Goldberg on his Monday show, saying “we’re going to wait and see the whole interview before we really hang Moyers, but Bernie’s warming up.”
Thursday, April 10, 2008
Saturday, April 5, 2008
Friday, April 4, 2008
The federal government plans to escalate its eradication of marijuana plantations in the backwoods of national forests this year, beginning in California with the deployment of larger strike teams and the controversial launching of miniature, remote-controlled spy planes to outfox growers, a top Bush administration official said Thursday.
Agriculture Undersecretary Mark Rey said an increasing number of pot growers financed by Mexican drug cartels are taking cover in the forest, particularly in the southern Sierra Nevada.
"We believe there are as many of them working marijuana gardens on national forests in California as there are Forest Service employees in the state – upwards of 5,000," said Rey, who oversees the agency.
According to Rey, the administration decided to disclose the planned surge in forest surveillance after The Bee and Associated Press persisted in questioning U.S. Forest Service officials about a $100,000 purchase of two battery-powered "unmanned aerial vehicles."
"We wanted to (clarify) what they are being used for, and what they aren't being used for," Rey said. "Random hunters aren't being spied on by their government."
Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, a nonprofit group representing whistle-blowers in government, called attention to the robo-planes earlier this week as Forest Service Chief Abigail Kimbell appeared before two U.S. Senate committees to justify the agency's annual budget request.
"A cash-starved Forest Service is buying glitzy hardware with zero justification," the group's director, Jeff Ruch, said in a press release, adding that "the use of spy technology in the domestic U.S. should not be undertaken lightly."
The Forest Service's Law Enforcement and Investigations unit bought the SkySeer craft from a California defense contractor that designed them for law enforcement to videotape suspects from close range without their knowledge, agency documents show.
Rey said marijuana growers scatter at the sound of piloted planes and helicopters.
The SkySeer runs quietly and its tiny video camera can resolve whether a person is armed with a handgun from 250 feet in the air – high enough for the 4-foot-long craft to become invisible from the ground, according to its inventor, Sam De La Torres.
"You can really sneak up on people," said De La Torres, who works at Octatron, a Los Angeles County firm that specializes in military surveillance gear.
Tighter drug enforcement along U.S. borders has led Mexican organized crime gangs to farm marijuana here, primarily on public land, according to the federal Drug Enforcement Administration. The backwoods of the national forests have become the hiding grounds of choice because of the availability of water for irrigation and the aerial cover afforded by the dense canopies.
In 2000, the Forest Service reported the eradication of several marijuana gardens in Hawaii, Kentucky, Tennessee and California, including the Shasta Trinity National Forest where agents seized about 4,300 marijuana plants at one location, according to the DEA.
Since then, law enforcers have uprooted up to 6 million marijuana plants in California national forests, Rey said.
The drones will allow agents to assess potential dangers before making arrests, he said.
Once the plane's front-mounted camera finds its target, operators can switch the craft to circling mode and activate a telephoto camera that transmits wirelessly to ground crews, De La Torres said.
Operators pilot the craft by clicking and dragging markers across maps on a laptop computer. The plane can fly one hour on its battery charge.
One of the two Forest Service-purchased models has a "thermal camera" to record heat signatures at night, he said.
Ruch, the employee group representative, said he learned about the aerial monitoring devices from Jack Gregory, a recently retired Forest Service official, and filed a federal Freedom of Information request to find out why the agency wanted to use drones.
Gregory, who supervised agency law enforcement for 32 years, said he cannot see how spy planes would give agents an edge on criminals in the forest.
"Finding meth labs and marijuana plantations in the national forest is not hard to do. We used real airplane overflights," said Gregory, who last worked as an agent in charge of enforcement in the Southeast.
"Our problem is we don't have enough officers to take them down
Wednesday, April 2, 2008
On the March 31 broadcast of his nationally syndicated radio show, Michael Savage stated, "Cops are getting knocked off all over the country because of the rules of engagement, written primarily by the scummiest class in America, the vermin of vermin, which are the left-wing lawyers who should be put in Abu Ghraib with hoods over their head, as far as I'm concerned." He then stated: "If I had the power by executive order, I would round up every member of the ACLU and of the National Lawyers Guild, and I'd put them in a prison in Guantánamo and I'd throw the key away. Or I would reopen Devil's Island and I'd put everyone in the ACLU into -- onto Devil's Island." He added, "But, you see, I fanaticize. That's one of my flaws is I live in a fantasy land that can never be." Devil's Island is a former French penal colony off the coast of French Guiana.
As Media Matters for America has documented, Savage has a history of attacking the ACLU. On the May 19, 2004, broadcast of The Savage Nation, Savage called the ACLU "the most dangerous organization in the history of America" and advocated that "these big-mouthed, phony scum of the ACLU ... should be put into Abu Ghraib prison."
Talk Radio Network, which syndicates Savage's show, says that Savage is heard on more than 350 radio stations. The Savage Nation reaches more than 8 million listeners each week, according to Talkers Magazine, making it one of the most listened-to talk radio shows in the nation, behind only The Rush Limbaugh Show and The Sean Hannity Show.
From the March 31 edition of Talk Radio Network's The Savage Nation:
SAVAGE: Now, we already know what's been done to the United -- the American police in America, how their hands have been tied behind their back. How the criminal has more rights than the policeman. It's been written about to such an extent that I don't want to repeat it. Cops are getting knocked off all over the country because of the rules of engagement, written primarily by the scummiest class in America, the vermin of vermin, which are the left-wing lawyers who should be put in Abu Ghraib with hoods over their head, as far as I'm concerned. If I had the power by executive order, I would round up every member of the ACLU and of the National Lawyers Guild and I'd put them in a prison in Guantánamo and I'd throw the key away. Or I would reopen Devil's Island and I'd put everyone in the ACLU into -- onto Devil's Island. I swear to God, that's what I'd like to do to save this country. But, you see, I fanaticize. That's one of my flaws is I live in a fantasy land that can never be.