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     There may never have been a question that Judge Sonia Sotomayor would be confirmed as the Associate Justice to the United States Supreme Court, as the replacement for retiring Justice David Souter. But the White House had been emphatic from the start that her confirmation vote must be a better vote than the Senate vote for the confirmation of Chief Justice John Roberts, which was 78-22.

     Despite her “wise Latina” comment, which was stated in numerous speeches, yet downplayed as a “one time” occurrence, no Democrat wanted to challenge the President.  The vote was  68   for her confirmation, and 31  opposed. It is important to remember that the junior Senator from Illinois voted AGAINST the confirmation of Chief Justice John Roberts, an action that has been brought up when the Dems commented that the Republicans should fall into line behind the President.

     Justice Sotomayor, touted as the first Hispanic justice on the Court (although Justice Cardozo’s Portuguese heritage actually qualifies him to be labelled as the first Hispanic), is the third woman appointed to the bench.

Mark Joseph writes in the Huffington Post:

Most American’s aren’t Birthers or anti-Birthers, but we are beginning to wonder why the president doesn’t put this one to rest once and for all. Every day he allows this circus to continue is another day that he behaves less like the President of the United States facing weird accusations from fringe groups and more like a strange politician flying to Argentina to visit his soul-mate while pretending to be hiking the Appalachians.

For Mark Joseph’s full post:

     The Beer Summit was moved from the picnic table to the Rose Garden, and someone today realized that the big photo-op could go wrong if they didn’t employ some feng shus. Thus, the gaffable Vice President was added to the mix, providing the necessary balance!

U.S. President Barack Obama (R) sits down for a beer with Harvard ...

     A trip through Russia, Paris, and Italy did not count as “summer vacation” for Sasha and Malia, and while many Americans have trimmed travel plans or cancelled them altogether,  the Obama “summer” plan has been released:

It’s hard to pick the perfect escape when you’re the leader of the free world. But word has it that the Obamas have found the hideaway they need: A 28-acre, $20-million property on Martha’s Vineyard Island, off the coast of Massachusetts, called Blue Heron Farm. The 10,000-square-foot retreat has everything a president wanting some downtime needs, including a swimming pool, basketball court, and golf tee. And it is even dog-friendly.

The Obama family will pay its own way for a one-week getaway at the end of August, and it’s not cheap: Rents reportedly run from $35-$50,000 a week for similar homes. (Not surprisingly, the town of Chilmark, where they’re headed, was voted the most expensive small town in America a couple years back. And that was before the First Family said they’d be coming.)

While it may seem elitist in mid-recession to turn up at an exclusive resort, consider this: The Secret Service rejected some 20 other vacation spots before Blue Heron Farm got the seal of approval.

As the AP notes, the Obamas’ visit is not as bad as you think—it actually adds to the rich history of the place: In the old days, black families vacationed on the island because they were unwelcome elsewhere. Now prominent African Americans who choose to spend their summers there include director Spike Lee, Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (yes, that Henry Louis Gates), and Obama’s Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett.

The cost of taking a week’s vacation when you are the president is undoubtedly high. But the value of family time, we’re sure, is priceless.

Yes, George Bush went on vacation—- to his ranch in Texas!! And, so much for my excursion to Martha’s Vineyard next month!

     Spin it anyway that they want, the American public, the “average Joe”, just isn’t buying what the Obama administration and the Congress is trying to ramrod at us:


 They have an 18 part series of articles on the health care plan.  I have only read this one part (part 14) and it’s pretty scary.  I guess I need to get busy.


 “Congress: It didn’t take long to run into an “uh-oh” moment when reading the House’s “health care for all Americans” bill. Right there on Page 16 is a provision making individual private medical insurance illegal.”

 “What wasn’t known until now is that the bill itself will kill the market for private individual coverage by not letting any new policies be written after the public option becomes law.”

     The White House, under the auspices of Rahm Emanuel, has begun to take on strong arming those who criticize the administration’s initiatives, as well as those who are skeptical of the results. Primarily, the White House has said that those skeptical of the economic stimulus results need to “Back off”, and with regard to healthcare reform, the White House has said that this WILL BE DONE, so get onboard!

From Politico:

On the defensive over the economy and health care, the White House is shooting back with a double-barreled message for its critics and skeptics. 

To Republicans who say the stimulus isn’t working: Back off. 

To moderate Democrats wary of health care reform: We’re watching you. 

Earlier this week, the administration launched a coordinated effort to jam Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl, an Arizona Republican who’s argued that the government should “cancel the rest of the stimulus spending.” No fewer than four Cabinet secretaries wrote to Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer — also a Republican — to ask her if she agreed with Kyl that it was time to turn off the state’s stimulus spigot.
“If you prefer to forfeit the money we are making available to your state, as Sen. Kyl suggests, please let me know,” wrote Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. For good measure, he attached a three-page addendum listing each of the Arizona projects paid for by the $521 million the state is getting. 

Brewer knew she’d been thrown a high, hard one. 

For Full article:

        In complete violation of the Federal Whistleblower’s Act, as well as military codes, the Department of Defense, through its agents, has begun retaliating against Major Stefan Cook for his lawsuit challenging the eligibility of Barack Obama to be President. From the Motion for Preliminary Injunction filed today in the US District Court in Georgia, the DOD actions are described in detail:


         Moreover, however, retaliation has occurred or begun against Plaintiff Stefan Frederick Cook for the exercise of his First Amendment right to petition for redress of grievances and Plaintiff Cook accordingly here seeks an injunction against the continuance or full implementation of this official governmental retaliation or in the alternative for a writ of mandamus, order to show cause, or rule nisi be issued to the Department of Defense commanding it to cease, cure, or remedy all retaliation against Plaintiff Cook.  The circumstances are as follows:

         Late on Tuesday afternoon, July 14, 2009, at around about 4:30 pm, Plaintiff Stefan Frederick Cook returned a call to an unknown telephone call from (813) 828-5884 and was told that his services were no longer required in Afghanistan and that he need not report for duty.  In addition Plaintiff an e-mail with the revocation order attached from Master Sargent Miguel Matos (Exhibit C).  Upon receipt of the revocation, Plaintiff Major Cook called his civilian boss, the CEO of Simtech, Inc., a closely held corporation that does DOD contracting in the general field of information technology/systems integration, at which Plaintiff Major was employed until taking a Military Leave of Absence on Friday July 10, 2009, a senior systems engineer and architect, in preparation for his deployment to Afghanistan.  (Plaintiff has five Cisco Systems certifications in information technology dating from 2000 and just recertified in June 2009 for the Cisco Certified Design Expert qualification exam.) 

         The CEO of Simtech, Inc., Larry Grice, explained to Plaintiff over a series of four conversations within the next two hours, that he had been terminated.  Grice told the Plaintiff that he would no longer be welcome in his former position at SOCOM but that Grice wanted to see whether he could find something within the company (Simtech, Inc.) for Cook.  The upshot was that at this time Grice did not have anything for Plaintiff to do.  Grice told Plaintiff, in essence, that the situation had become “nutty and crazy”, and that Plaintiff would no longer be able to work at his old position. 

         Grice explained that he had been in touch with Defense Security Services (an agency of the Department of Defense[1], with regional offices located in SOCOM Headquarters at McDill Airforce Base in Tampa, Florida), and that DSS had not yet made a determination whether Plaintiff Major Cook’s clearances would be pulled, but Grice made clear to Cook that it was DSS who had compelled Cook’s termination.  Essentially, because of the “nutty and crazy” situation and the communications received from DSS was no longer employable by him at all.  So he was not optimistic about getting me another job at the company.  Grice also reported to Plaintiff that there was some gossip that “people were disappointed in” the Plaintiff because they thought he was manipulating his deployment orders to create a platform for political purposes.  Grice then discussed Plaintiff’s expectation of receiving final paychecks (including accrued leave pay) already owed, without any severance pay, and wished the Plaintiff well.

         A federal agency (such as the Department of Defense, acting through the Defense Security Services Agency) clearly violates the Whistleblower Protection Act if it takes or fails to take (or threatens to take or fail to take) a personnel action with respect to any employee or applicant because of any disclosure of information by the employee or applicant that he or she reasonably believes evidences a violation of a law, rule or regulation; gross mismanagement; gross waste of funds; an abuse of authority; or a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety.  What has happened in the present case of Stefan Frederick Cook is that a federal agency appears to have taken action against Stefan Frederick Cook’s private employer, Simtech, Inc., which is a closely held corporation owned and operated by members of a single family, who are as much victims of the Department of Defense’ heavy-handed interference with Plaintiff Cook’s private-sector employment as is Plaintiff Cook himself.

For full story and link to court filings:

By the Monitor’s Editorial Board The Monitor’s Editorial Board Mon Jul 13, 5:00 am ET

The tide may be turning against years of effort to restrict the influence of money in federal elections.

Will President Obama – who surfed to an election victory on a towering wave of campaign donations – be able to hold back the threatening tide?

One potential setback is beyond his control. The Supreme Court will likely decide in its next term whether to alter more than a century of restrictions on corporate campaign-finance activity in federal elections.

But the president can influence other key issues, if he can summon the political will. So far, he hasn’t shown much.

In his run for president, for instance, Mr. Obama promised to rely on public financing in the general election. The limited funding is meant to act as a brake on spending and donor influence – and put candidates on equal financial footing.

But Obama reneged, becoming the first general election candidate to refuse public funding. He raised record private donations and had a huge war-chest advantage over Republican John McCain, who accepted the $84 million limit of public money.

For full editorial:

     The wise Latina woman appeared on Capitol Hill, and Sen. Leahy began the “dog and pony” show that is being choreographed for the benefit of the American public. But if this process is to be truly sincere, truly honest to the Constitution, then Sen. Lindsey Graham’s statement that “elections have consequences” is false. The young Sen. from Illinois, now the President, didn’t see it that way when he voted against the nomination of Chief Justice John Roberts, not on his record or his qualifications, but because he did not think that Roberts would have the empathy that would be needed to affect social justice.

        From “America’s Right”:

                Voting against the confirmation of Sonia Sotomayor will take a wealth of political courage. Giving Sotomayor a rough time with regard to the plethora of reasons why she should not sit on the United States Supreme Court will take even more.

It would be relatively easy for a senator to explain to his or her constituents that he or she look forward to a day when they could vote in favor of confirming a nominee who is both Hispanic and qualified. Explaining why they relentlessly pointed out overt, repeated acts of racism and judicial activism on her part—not to mention the several occasions where her decisions, rooted in a stark dearth of intelligence, were overturned by the Supreme Court—would be slightly more difficult.

Here are my questions for the Hon. Sonia Sotomayor:

  1. Is a Hispanic female party more or less likely to bring a bona fide grievance before the Court than a white male party?
  2. If you were in my shoes, and Chief Justice John Roberts were to have said, on several occasions, that he has been able to come to a better decision because of his life experiences and his being a white male judge than, say, a Hispanic or black or Native American female judge could, how fit would you consider him to be objectively adjudicating matters where the legal and constitutional issue, rather than the parties, are of the utmost importance?
  3. Most of your decisions which have reached the Court at which you aspire to sit have been overturned or otherwise scrutinized for your failure to properly interpret the law. With no court to review the Supreme Court, should the American people be confident you’ll get it right?

For the full list and article: