Two Guantanamo Inmates Show up on Al-Queda Video

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I wonder if President Obama has been briefed on this yet.  This story has been mentioned on Drudge and isn’t actually gracing the headlines today in a way that it should particularly since Obama has just signed an executive order closing down the prison that used to house these two. 

Well, after it’s closed down, we now know what we can expect.

Price to Play

Since Steve lives in Chicago, I’m sure the news coming out of there comes as little to no surprise to him.  He makes a very good point; the media is, for the most part, saying, “Rod WHO?!?”  But because of their blatant refusal to look this in the face right now this instant, I’m gonna pitch a fit.  I’m so sick of hearing about how biased FOX News is from liberals that I’m about ready to scream, and FOX is the only news outlet that is putting this scandal at center stage, where it belongs.

Why should the rest of the media be honest and unbiased about it?  It might just hurt the image of their precious Obamessiah.

Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich has been arrested today on federal charges of bribery and corruption in a “pay to play” political scandal that could put him in prison for a very long time.  His wife and one of his deputies was in on it, too.  The biggest accusation–and this was all confirmed by wiretapped conversations–was that he was trying to sell President-Elect Barack Obama’s now-vacant senate seat.  He was caught saying this several times, in a variety of ways: “it’s a f—ing valuable thing.  You just don’t give it away for nothing.”

Next is the accusation that he attempted to influence the staffing at the Chicago Tribune.  The Tribune Company, the business that owns the Trib, had requested state funds due to their slouching sales; Blagojevich, angry over editorial columns in the Trib that were critical of him and Obama, basically told them they’d get their money if they got rid of the offending writers: “fire all those f—ing people, get them the f— out of there and get us some support.”  His wife chimed in on this one, too: “f— them,” she said during a conference call with the deputy and a Tribune Co. representative during a call about selling Wrigley Field and the Cubs, “hold up that f—ing Cubs s—!”

He was also involved in soliciting high-ranking government jobs for the highest bidder.  Chicago socialites such as Tony Rezko, Stuart Levine and Ali Ata were doing business with the state and giving political donations.  In return, Blagojevich was trying to secure state jobs and funding, as well as appointment to government commissions and boards.

What’s most disgusting to me, though, is the governor’s threat to yank back $8 million in state funding for a children’s hospital.  His reason?  He didn’t get the $50,000 political contribution that he wanted from the hospital.  That disgusts me more than I can say, because children’s medical issues and funding is a huge issue for me, particularly pediatric oncology research.  The hospital he threatened has a top-notch pediatric oncology team.  It also has the leading research on ADHD and has won awards for it’s treatment of cystic fibrosis.  That was what the governor was threatening, and it was all over a piss-ant political contribution.  He was caught on the wires literally saying on several occasions, “I’m in this to make money.”

Obama has denied being in contact with Blagojevich over his empty senate seat.  That’s funny, because Obama’s spokesman, David Axelrod, said something completely different about two weeks ago (something he’s now trying to recant–convenient).  Blagojevich was trying to use that senate seat to secure $300,000-a-year jobs for himself and his wife with unions and nonprofit organizations.

Obama involvement or no, the mainstream media’s attempt to fight tooth and nail to keep Sarah Palin in a negative spotlight any which way they can (as per Steve’s post today) is unbelievable.  ABC didn’t post this as big news until the evening edition, when it became clear that everyone wanted to know about it, and some other stations have yet to put it on the front section.  Blagojevich is facing a possible 30-year prison term and a $500,000 fine, and Yahoo! news is trying to slough it off.

Fair and balanced?  Puh-leeeeeze.  Of the past six Illinois governors, four have been convicted of corruption (the last one was sentenced to seven years in the clink).  28 Chicago aldermen have been convicted in the past decade.  I’d say this screams to put a stop to Chicago politics.  It also scares the hell out of me to find out what we’ve got in store for the next four years.  Obama has already shown his propensity for this kind of dirty game.

(Oh…and by the way, I am NOT calling in gay tomorrow.  That is just about the stupidest thing I have ever heard in my freakin’ life.)

Was it really that bad?

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Often times when tragedy strikes any area; be it a small town or a large city, we all become overly engaged in what the media is telling us.  This story for some reason has been keeping me very interested.  As everyone knows, in a town north of me about seven to eight hours in Crandon, Wisconsin a 20-year old police officer went on a shooting rampage at a quiet house-pizza-party and killed six of his friends.  The next day, he was gunned down by police and killed as well.

The story caught my ear yesterday and touched personally for the ominous fact that I have traveled to that area of the country with some great friends here that go there regularly.  I remember the feeling you get when you are up there.  It’s all wooded, untouched, beautiful, quiet, peaceful, clean, and you truly regret having to come back to the Chicago area.  (Of course after too much of it, the city boy in me would get bored).  I suppose I’m a country boy at heart.

Tyler Peterson is described by fellow police officers as being “level-headed and polite.”  In the hours after the shooting, a close-friend also stated that he was very remorseful and had been hurt by his ex-girlfriend and attended the party where he had intended to patch-up a break up but became enraged when it escalated into an argument with the entire crowd verbally ridiculing him and calling him a “worthless pig.” 

While there is no excuse for what he did, it makes you wonder just how bad did this kid feel?  Had he never been angered before in his 20-years of life?  As a “level-headed and polite” public servant who protected the people of his area, was he extremely provoked? 

There is one survivor whose condition is getting better.  Perhaps he can provide us with answers on this.  But not one person is ridiculing this fella for what he did.  I am not trying to throw judgment here, because this is still a new case that I am sure will continue to be mulled by the media.  But every person including fellow officers, neighbors, friends, etc. all describe this kid as a decent person.  Even up to the very end, he allegedly wanted to turn himself in on his own terms. 

In a statement released by his parents, they seem as puzzled as everyone else.  I can’t even imagine the pain they must be feeling knowing that their son is never coming back while simultaneously not having a clue ever that he was that close to snapping.  The responsibility they must feel for all of these senseless deaths must be extremely overwhelming.

In such a peaceful area it really makes us think.  It also makes us wonder why things are turning out this way.  Why could such a promising young man who obviously was not a thug or a punk prior to this incident commit such unimaginable acts? 

I almost feel like I’m speaking in defense of him, but I’m not.  It is just a massive mystery and my quick-thoughts and conclusions are not coming through for me on this one. 

It’s just very sad that in a time our country is battling homicidal/suicidal nuts overseas that good-Americans in peaceful small mid-western towns act similarly in a moment of sadness and despair.

I’m really crying hard on the inside over this one.  Truly sad.

You can see more pics of the incident here temporarily.