Archive for the ‘appeals’ Category

Why is it that once elected some arcane invisible force will seize the reasoning faculties of a public official like … a drug?  I reconstitute some thoughts that came before me to inform the world, once again, power can perform exactly like a drug.  I describe here the corrupting influences, not of power, but of drugs.

The bad news is if you are on drugs you are not in control. If you do enough drugs on a regular basis you become a cause lost to addiction. Again, not a giant revelation.

When you mix drugs you may get casualties.  Many many actors, musicians and otherwise cherished people we may know mixed up their drugs and died. If the addict is not dead then they come out circumstantially or physically chewed up on the other end of the addiction cycle.

Some of the cast members from Walking Dead resemble LA’s skid row at 5:30 AM.  Those unfortunate bottomers lose their life savings, their teeth, and motor skills to chemically induced cerebral palsy. Substance abuse bores holes in your brain. The worst loss of all is dignity.

Sometimes the perils of substance abuse don’t stay quiet.  Especially when political figures mix the drug of power and crack cocaine. Every now and then you get a gory story of a capital town mayor hitting the ground like Icarus on the way back from the sun. A recent bookmark was Ontario’s Mayor Ford.  Reputation splattered all over the news. Institution temples desecrated. Swarms of bloodletting lawyers emerged like bats at dusk. There is awe but not shock.

I don’t hear much about anyone else in these capitol towns, their substance abuse or heavy party habits.  I am convinced there are still casualties because there is mixing of drugs: power & party favors. Hence, the speculation about capitol towns spoken of as an underworld escalator to crypts hiding in plain sight.

Let’s take a quick look at one drug of choice for people with far too much money, some power and self-granted immunity from criminality: cocaine. Cocaine induced psychosis makes you think you are God with a capital G, for Going TOO FAAST.  Unfortunately, it is  also a really addictive substance.  Addicts in their quest for the unending high become chemically induced psychopaths. Sometimes people die as a result. Usually not the addict, I’m afraid. Prisons are filled with addicts who created treacheries for themselves and others while completely high.  Obviously  addicts in prison are not in power or have mastery of their fate.

Everyone is a little bit scared of gangsters and drug dealers, including and especially addicts.  They are known to kill indiscriminately.  They are your proverbial bad guys endorsing the underside of life.

CAUTION: RABBIT HOLE AHEAD, watch where you step.

Now mix in the “investigative journalism” premise: the CIA runs the Latin American drug trade (confirmed) and perhaps, along with the US Military manages Afghanistan’s Opiate trade (unconfirmed). There are a couple of notable investigative reporters who broke the news about the CIA’s role in DEA corruption of the Los Angeles drug trade.Incidentally they also passed on fairly recently of “suicide”. [R.I.P. Michael Ruppert]  In fact, check out the full length biopic “Killing The Messenger” about the life and death of Gary Webb, reporter for the San Jose Mercury News, due for release October 2014 from FOCUS films.  http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1216491/  Webb ONLY went back over the Iran Contra justice scandal in 1996 to reveal the CIA was still in the narco business.

Is CIA drug involvement policy your fault? No. Is it the fault of drug addicts caught in the middle of business conducted by our clandestine services departments? Not really, but sometimes, yes.  Are prisons filled with small time guys who probably were set up for a life of trouble by the CIA?  We think so.

It’s moderate-to-popular to say the federal War On Drugs is a failure.  It’s somewhat scary to say don’t do drugs because the federal intelligence agencies are creating an independent source of wealth and a duplicitous system of prison controls through the drug trade. So it makes sense now, if Nancy Regan DAREed to be a moral person for 2 seconds of her life, to just tell people not to pay into the federal drug trade.  Why should the American people fatten up the CIA so they can throw addicts in prison?

People are dying every day in Afghanistan. I don’t think anyone really knows for sure what’s going on. However, if you check with your local homeless veteran back from Afghanistan with a serious black tar habit they might tell you they were patrolling poppy fields one day and then busting them later.  That might mean the Pentagon and US Intelligence agencies have access to no small amount of party favors. I don’t think any regulator really checks up on them because everything has “gone black” or is intentionally secret.  If my projected scare porn scenario is true it makes the Iran Contra scandal look like Ivory soap.

I think Washington D.C. is full of drugs. The people with clandestine access and immunity from the covert community is at an all time high. The hubris, lying and compulsive power tripping policy is also at an all time high. It might make more sense if they were trying to protect a well indulged narcotics habit.

However, I don’t think the narcotic of power by itself would be enough to keep up the level of corruption instituted in D.C. If the People in Power are mixing their drugs it might look like aliens are minding the store because they are so.. so.. HIGH.  I could totally see K Street lobbyists/hookers doing their mark ups completely high. I could see aides and elected officials making agreements to do things that aren’t in the public interest. Like greenlighting blank-check omnibus bundled crap they didn’t read while they are completely drunk or high. Everyone around them might be employed to be an enabler or scared to death to say anything for FOMO (fear of missing out) or…death.People who follow power for power’s sake don’t think long term.

Addicts only think as far as their next high.

THE BIG COME DOWN

When someone comes down from a massive high they are often paranoid.  If you have a lot of responsibility back in your district and someone introduced you to your new best friend Cocaine and you have to attend a committee hearing in an hour, who is in control now?  Your dealer.

Your dealer is now the source of All That Is, even if “That” is a totally illegal controlled substance.  You are going to do exactly what they tell you.  If your dealer is actually the self-declared King of Clandestine Access, they can get you a speed pass to Heaven so long as you don’t ever cross them as the source.  Since you actually just gave away all of your power and the power of your entire district to a drug dealer you are *definitely paranoid* now.

Power is no longer power when you give it away to someone else.

If you were coming down and trying to manage public office one would think that you couldn’t write in surveillance controls or clandestine immunity rules fast enough.  The Dealer could keep an eye on the dissenting insects who cannot possibly understand what it’s like now that you are God. They’ve got guns and muscle. It’ll be easy.

It’s not like I have proof, or anything, but it’s something to consider in light of what we have experienced in public affairs for the last 30 years. There are DUI laws. Perhaps we could do something about lawmaking conducted under the influence. People with substance abuse problems can legitimately be removed from public office. Obviously, you cannot be expected to run the country high out of your mind.

It is worth saying anyone who expects to trade in my civil liberty, unopposed, for a gratuitous, unchecked government contract must be completely high. If the court system entertained my notions in they might introduce a mass intervention against a real source of corruption in Washington.

It’s more likely, since this sort of  proposal is reasonable, that someone dumb and powerful will immediately ignore it.  I am gambling on a small percentage of justice professionals who would consider it given the powers granted to them to enforce Constitutional law.

The People have immediate cause to release problem addicts from “public service”.  If they want to beg for their job, they can liquidate their pension into a 401K as a severance package and pursue substance rehab or vocational rehab. If we were nice they could choose to apply for their job after 360 days of technical sobriety.  We would not be compelled to rehire at any rate.

Just imagine the D.C. gridlock caused by school busses filled with former public servants headed to the Ozarks for acquittal rehab.

Now..Take us home Donna Summer…  https://soundcloud.com/tommiesunshine/donna-summer-macarthur-park

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Appeals Court Backs EFF Push for Telecom Lobbying Documents Disclosure

c/o EFF

Panel Rules Law Does Not Protect Identities of Lobbyists
San Francisco – Today a federal appeals court rejected a government claim of “lobbyist privacy” to hide the identities of individuals who pressured Congress to grant immunity to telecommunications companies that participated in the government’s warrantless electronic surveillance of millions of ordinary Americans.
As the court observed, “There is a clear public interest in public knowledge of the methods through which well-connected corporate lobbyists wield their influence.”

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has been seeking records detailing the telecoms’ campaign for retroactive legal immunity under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Telecom immunity was enacted as part of the FISA Amendments Act of 2008.

“Today’s ruling is an important one for government and corporate accountability,” said EFF Staff Attorney Marcia Hofmann. “The court recognized that paid lobbyists trying to influence the government to advance their clients’ interests can’t hide behind privacy claims to keep their efforts secret.”

This decision is the latest setback for the government in its long-running attempt to delay disclosure of the documents EFF seeks. So far, EFF has obtained thousands of pages of records through this litigation.

“AT&T, Verizon and Sprint expended millions of dollars to lobby the government and get an unconstitutional grant of retroactive immunity for their illegal spying on American citizens,” said EFF Senior Staff Attorney Kurt Opsahl. “The public deserves to know how our rights were sold out by and for telecom lobbyists.”

The appeals court sent part of the case back down to the district court for further consideration, including whether disclosure of the lobbyists’ identities would reveal intelligence sources and methods and whether communications between the agencies and the White House can be withheld under the presidential communications privilege or other grounds.