Not all ghouls dissapear after Halloween

Daily Kos :: Florida burning: my report from Palm Beach

Daily Kos

I've spent the last two days in Palm Beach County, volunteering for the Kerry campaign. It's crystal clear to me that going into this election, South Florida is burning -- with a desire to evict Bush from the White House.

I flew in on Friday night, and reported to Kerry/Edwards HQ in West Palm Beach on Saturday morning. A couple hundred people were there already, many volunteers like myself (and many volunteers from out of town). I knew there were other New Yorkers coming down for this (I'd met some at the airport the night before); as I was signing in that morning, fellow New Yorker and DailyKos regular Rina spotted me. In short order, I joined her and her two friends, and set out to do some canvassing. "


Break on Through

Break on Through
Great Blog!


From Daily Kos

Potomac Watch: Administration's own actions fuel rumors of draft


WASHINGTON -- Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld indignantly scoffs and scolds about the relentless rumors that the Bush administration is planning to reinstate the military draft.

"This plot is so secret that it doesn't exist," Rumsfeld wrote this week in the Deseret News of Salt Lake City. "To my knowledge, in the time I have served as secretary of defense, the idea of reinstating the draft has never been debated, endorsed, discussed, theorized, pondered or even whispered by anyone in the Bush administration."



Diaries :: RegenerationMan's diary ::

This may come as a shock to the Pentagon chief, but most of the rumors have arisen from actions within the Bush administration, which has studied how to expand draft registration to include women, target some civilian work specialties for special attention by the draft and extend the required draft registration age from 25 years old to 34 years.

These draft plans were discussed at the Pentagon on Feb. 11, 2003, by the chief of the Selective Service System, the federal agency that would operate a draft, and senior Pentagon officials.

Make all-important get-out-the-vote calls from your confy chair, in your PJs

From Daily Kos
How To Multiply Your Vote...

How To Multiply Your Vote By 50 Or Even 100 Times...

You don't have to live in a battleground state to make all-important get-out-the-vote calls. You can do it from wherever you live, starting now. Here's how...

America Coming Together has partnered with Party For America to enlist people like YOU to make GOTV calls to registered Democrats in the battleground states.

As of 1 a.m. this morning, 134,000 calls have already gone out. Help from people like YOU can up that number into the millions. And it's amazingly easy to do (only 3 steps necessary)

1. Go to Party For America. Here's what you'll see...

Seymour Hersh: Abu Ghraib is a symptom, a terrible symptom of a system that went bad from the beginning

So what does the Abu Ghraib scandal say – the fact that it happened and the way it was handled by the Bush administration ...

Oh, c'mon. You can ask a better question than that.

No, no, no, does it reveal a deeper truth ...

OK, fine. Abu Ghraib is a symptom, a terrible symptom of a system that went bad from the beginning. From the first days of the war, the attitude was 'We can do anything we want.' When John Walker Lindh – that young boy who was captured with al Qaeda, that lost kid from California – was first captured, the mistreatment was astonishing. He was stripped, thrown around. There was a bullet they didn't take out for days. The soldiers spit on him. There were people at the time who thought it was just madness what we were doing and that it would stop soon. But the American public liked it.

So in a funny way, we got what we wanted. We wanted payback, we wanted revenge. And we saw everybody in al Qaeda, the Taliban, and the Muslim world as our enemy.

So you're describing a blood-lust on the part of the American people.

No, what I said was what happened is ... OK, one of the amazing things is the first report [on Abu Ghraib] that was done by Antonio Taguba, a wonderful, highly motivated, brilliant officer. And he traced the tracks of Abu Ghraib back to Afghanistan. The prisoner abuse began then.

And here's my complaint about Bush, and Cheney and Rumsfeld. Of course, none of these people knew about Abu Ghraib – all that madness, piling up naked people. But at no time did the people at the top of the chain of command say, "You will not mistreat people."

Clinging tightly to the roller coaster chair

Which Devil?

Old men in pickup trucks are telling media cameras lately, 'Well, I don't care for either candidate, but it's better to go with the devil you know than the devil you DON'T know.'

The media presents it as homespun philosophy with a point, but they aren't questioning the point.

And the heart of the point is that people are riding their fear, protecting that fear as they would a horse in the wilderness. The fearful cling, understandably, and in our clinging, we constantly reach for the most secure thing to cling to. Familiarity generates a kind of security. So it appears, even a known devil is secure simply by virtue of his being known.

This is supposed to make sense? Well no, but our nation, as it enters a new Dark Age, is not looking for sense. It is looking for black and white, a long soothing hum that requires no thinking. It seems to be seeking comfort in blindness."

the other side - Powered By Bloglines

the other side - Powered By Bloglines
Great Blog!

10 Reasons Why Kerry Will Win By a Landslide

FRom your lips to God's ears!!!!

By Anthony Watson

Most polls, even post Bush’s poor debate performance, are showing the race too close to call or a slight edge for Bush. Well listen up folks, there is no way in a free and open election that Bush can beat Kerry. Tell me I am crazy, everyone else does, but no matter. Americans are a unique and fabulous breed, terrible in our wrath, wonderful in our compassion, stunning in our accomplishments and our failures. Above all we love our freedom and our liberty. It is the individual freedom we have enjoyed that allowed us to be the nation that the world envies.

10. We must be free. In our hearts we know it, but in our minds we deny it.

9. Bush is an appointed President. Americans don’t like that.

8. Medicare - This “reform” turned out to be industry written legislation, primarily the insurance and drug industries.

7. Bin Laden still at large - After invading Afghanistan and overthrowing the standing government, Bin Laden is still free. How can this be? We cannot go into a country and kill so many innocents and not come out with our man. The administration’s story at the time was that we were tracking Bin Laden’s cell phone and he simply handed it to a man on a camel going the other direction. Is it really that easy to shake America’s revenge? Of course, we did “outsource” his capture to the Northern Alliance, so what did we expect?

6. Guantanamo - The handling of Afghan POWs was puzzling to some Americans.

5. Abu Ghraib – Many an American overlooked the Gitmo prisoners, but the photos from Abu Ghraib could not be ignored.

4.Iraq – The administration’s preemptive, unilateral war in Iraq, seemed to make sense to most of America. However, more and more of the facts have come out, and blaming this debacle on poor intelligence becomes an obvious whitewash. To allow America and its military to become the tools of another country, especially Iran is incredibly embarrassing, not to mention impeachable stupidity.

3. Iran, North Korea and Sudan – Countries that could truly use some military presence or pressure to make the world a safer place cannot be addressed by our military. Our military is pinned down in a foolhardy military adventure that is destroying our reputation as the “good guys”.

2. Bush is now rejected by many retired military commanders. - These retired military men are not lightweights either

1. Jobs - Jobs seem to be hemorrhaging from our borders. Maybe who is in the White House does not really matter to the average man in the street, but whether he can get a job, DOES matter! To listen to Bush, we should cut him some slack because there have been so many crises during his tenure. Still how did FDR manage to create more jobs than BushAre you better off or even safer four years after Bush was appointed President?

So ignore the polls. They are clearly wrong. There is no way the American people will send Bush back for four more years. We have all seen what the last four years have been like and it has not been pretty. The American people will prove to the world that democracy works and we will throw the bums out. Only by booting Bush and his cronies out of Washington can we hope to regain any credibility in the global community.

Kerry's Contra-Cocaine Chapter

For those who say "Kerry did nothing in the Senate" remind them it was Kerry who helped bust papa Bush and reich wing darling Ollie North black ops when they were SELLING ARMS TO TERRORISTS and laundering money for druglords...

From Consortiumnews.com:

In December 1985, when Brian Barger and I wrote a groundbreaking story for the Associated Press about Nicaraguan Contra rebels smuggling cocaine into the United States, one U.S. senator put his political career on the line to follow up on our disturbing findings. His name was John Kerry.

Yet, over the past year, even as Kerry's heroism as a young Navy officer in Vietnam has become a point of controversy, this act of political courage by a freshman senator has gone virtually unmentioned, even though -- or perhaps because -- it marked Kerry's first challenge to the Bush family.

In early 1986, the 42-year-old Massachusetts Democrat stood almost alone in the U.S. Senate demanding answers about the emerging evidence that CIA-backed Contras were filling their coffers by collaborating with drug traffickers then flooding U.S. borders with cocaine from South America."

Kerry spooks Bushies

A Kossak (from Kos board) did this great pumpkin

Endorsing Neo-Craziness? - by Gordon Prather

Endorsing Neo-Craziness? - by Gordon Prather: "Soon after Bush took office, three dozen analysts gathered for a full-day, top-secret conference to address the question 'how and where could al-Qaeda get a nuke?'

''We thought the highest probability of their getting anything would be to buy a weapon 'full up' from corrupt or ideologically allied insiders in the chain of custody in a nuclear weapons state,' said Richard A. Clarke, who organized the intelligence summit as Bush's national coordinator for counter-terrorism. 'We assumed the place most likely to supply that would be the former Soviet Union.''

So, Bush should have immediately joined President Putin in fully supporting the Non-Proliferation Treaty proliferation prevention regime administered by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), in general, and in ensuring that all Russian-deployed nukes "

The new bin Laden tape

Since the 9/11 attacks bin Laden and his chief deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri, have released more than two dozen audio and videotapes, an astounding average of one tape every six weeks. Tracing back the chain of custody of these tapes is the one guaranteed method of finding the location of al Qaeda's leaders. However, despite the fact that most of these tapes have been released to the al Jazeera television network, US intelligence services are seemingly incapable of tracing the custody of the tapes; an abject failure of intelligence-gathering. The release of yesterday's videotape was no exception to this pattern. According to Reuters, on Friday morning, Ahmad Zaidan, the Pakistan bureau chief of al Jazeera received a package at his Islamabad office containing the bin Laden videotape. Zaidan had received a similar bin Laden audiotape two years ago following the terrorist attacks on tourist sites in Bali, Indonesia that killed two hundred people. CNN's Barbara Starr reported Friday that Pentagon officials were not surprised that bin Laden would issue such a statement around the time of the US presidential election, yet there is nothing to indicate that American intelligence agencies were staking out the most obvious recipient of such a tape: Al Jazeera's bureau in Pakistan."


frontline: rumsfeld's war: watch the full program online | PBS

frontline: rumsfeld's war: watch the full program online | PBS

Welcome to eRiposte!


WOW! bin Laden tape a 'little gift' for Kerry?!

From Kerry-Edwards Online Forum

WOW! bin Laden tape a 'little gift' for Kerry?!

A short note on the race, the polls, and what the Bush camp is calling bin Laden's 'little gift.'

The next few days phone polling probably amounts to one of the biggest industries in the United States.

So it's interesting to look at the results of last night's post-gift polling.

First, the four tracking polls released today and thus including roughly one-third of calls after the release of the OBL tape ...

In Zogby's, Kerry moved up one point.

In Rasmussen's, Kerry moved up one point.

In WaPo/ABC, Kerry moved up two points.

Now, does this mean the bin Laden tape is giving a boost to Kerry? Of course, not. These are tiny changes. And it's altogether possible that this small shift is simply the result of statistical 'noise' -- numbers wobbling around within the polls' margins of error.

(but statistical noise shouldn't all be in one direction!)

But it should put at least some damper on the notion that the release of the OBL tape would lead to some sudden Bush surge.

At least if the pundits are listening.

-- Josh Marshall


Did the Cheney-Bush Junta Commit War Crimes?

Political Strategy - Politics, Strategies, Tactics, News and Opinion: "The Evidence Begs a Fundamental Question: Did the Cheney-Bush Junta Commit War Crimes?
By William Hare

Two smoking guns have recently surfaced concerning activities of the Bush Administration in the long period leading up to the Iraq War. When considered in the face of earlier evidence the question must be asked whether this information warrants under international law a trial against members of the Cheney-Bush junta for the commission of war crimes."

1) Colin Brown revealed in the October 27 edition of the London newspaper, The Independent, how secret plans were passed to British Army chiefs by U.S. planners a full five months before the Iraq invasion was launched.

2) The other recent smoking gun ... emanates from .. Greg Palast... Palast received a copy of an Economy Plan that, to quote Palast, “reads like a Christmas wishlist drafted by U.S. corporate lobbyists.”

The document takes a position on important economic issues from slashing taxes to wiping away Iraq’s tariffs. On the key subject of oil, in Palast’s words, “the secret drafter emphasized that Iraq would have to ‘privatize’ its oil and supporting industries.” The issue of copyright law is also addressed in the Economic Plan. Presumably this is in synch with Bush’s grand vision of democracy for Iraq and its expansive spread throughout the Middle East. Given such a spread, it is evident who will be enriched, and it would not be the Arab citizenry.

Palast’s reporter’s instinct told him that the language of the Economic Plan bore the ring of Grover Norquist, a former lobbyist for Microsoft and American Express. Today Norquist directs Americans for Tax Reform, a “trade union for billionaires” that pushes a regressive “flat tax” proposal. While Norquist has not been able to yet achieve success with his flat tax proposal, which has also been championed by Steve Forbes, he is understandably bullish about its prospect for success if able to try it out in the Middle East under the neoconservative grand order of “democracy in action.”

The 2001 document dovetails with the reason why the Bush Administration needed to force out Jay Garner as Iraqi administrator. Garner had threatened the well-laid objectives of the Economic Plan’s secret drafters by committing Iraqis to a free and fair election once Saddam Hussein was toppled, preferably within 90 days. This rash expectation ran afoul of the developing plans of the “global multinational voices of democracy” that needed more time to arrange their free market economic takeover of Iraq.

When Grover Norquist, whose most famous statement was that his goal is to “drown government in the bathtub,” certainly exempting the Pentagon and the John Ashcroft thought police, was asked about the Annex D phase of Garner’s “pledge to democracy” proposal, he replied that elections would have to wait. “The right to trade, property rights, these things are not to be determined by some democratic election,” Norquist tipped his hand.

I smell a RAT in the White House

Diebold e-voting woes, Junk code, gaping security holes, ....

#define DESKEY ((des_key* "F2654hd4")

Like writing your pin on your bank card, diebold programmers hardcoded the secret key to unencrypt all voter info...

Breaking the Diebold e-voting machines code

Posting unprotected source codes for a commercial product on the Web is rare and considered unspeakably stupid in the computer world, so, word spread quickly, and a computer scientist at Stanford University told Dr. Rubin. Dr. Rubin, in turn called in Adam Stubblefield, a doctoral student at Hopkins, and Tadayoshi Kohno, a summer graduate student, telling them they needed to drop everything and come see what was on his computer. What they were looking at, they concluded, was a program compiled in 2000 and its April 2002 update, apparently posted so programmers could work on it. It was nothing less than the programming that made the voting machines voting machines.

The students pored over 49,609 lines of "code," computer language commands that look like hieroglyphics to anyone not trained as a programmer. One line blew them away. It means nothing to laymen, but it was enough to make Dr. Rubin's hair stand on end.

#define DESKEY ((des_key* "F2654hd4".

All commercial programs have provisions to be encrypted, protected by secret code so that no one could read or change the contents without the encryption key. That is particularly true of programs that require transmission by telephone or wireless networks. The line that staggered the Hopkins team told them first, that the method used to encrypt the Diebold machines was a method called Digital Encryption Standard (DES), a code that was broken in 1997 and is no longer used by anyone to secure programs. F2654hd4 was the key to the encryption.

The programmers had done the equivalent of putting the family jewels in a safe, putting up a blinking neon sign reading "Jewels in Here!" and taping the lock's combination to the safe door. Moreover, because the key was in the source code, all Diebold machines responded to the same key. Unlock one, you can unlock them all.

That was only one of the problems Dr. Rubin's team found. The computer language used to write the program, C , is never recommended for secure programs because hackers can — and do — attack it easily. There are other programming languages far more secure that the Diebold programmers ignored, perhaps because they didn't know them well.

Additionally, all large computer programs, which can sometimes run into the hundreds of thousands of lines, are written by teams and therefore are extensively annotated. One programmer or a team puts in an instruction and then adds a note explaining why it was done that way. Other programmers can add comments or base what they do on the reasoning in the comments. Or, they can use the annotations to hunt for bugs when the program misbehaves.

Dr. Rubin said that when he worked for IBM one summer, there were three pages of notes for every line of code, and no line was added until committees of reviewers approved. Whole pages of the Diebold source code were without annotations or signs of review, something you don't see on professionally written programs, he said. Some of the annotations that existed even warned that the code contained unfixed bugs. Clearly, Dr. Rubin thought, Diebold was not using the top of the class at M.I.T. to write programs for its voting machines.

The code is so badly written, Dr. Rubin shows sections to audiences at computer science conferences to get laughs.

Ballot Boxing

Republican Hypocrits were against Chemical Weapons control treaties

From a Kossak

In 1997, President Clinton had to twist Republican arms to get congress to ratify the Chemical Weapons Convention. The arms control community knew about this for a long time.

I don't have time to go through specific text, but I could find a few links to real coverage:

Past News on Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC)---This has all the links!!


Clinton Urging Senate to Pass CWC

Sometimes I simply cringe when I hear the Republicans talk about WMDs, when they have had such a reckless history of controling their proliferation."

Halliburning ...

Cheney oil firm faces UK inquiry

US vice-president mired in claims of bribery and corruption against his former company in four countries

British authorities have opened a new front in the widening investigation into allegations of bribery at Halliburton, the American oil services business, while it was being run by the US vice-president, Dick Cheney.


by Gary173 on Kos

Protecting Troops: Along With Prayers, Families Send Armor

The New York Times > International > Middle East > Protecting Troops: Along With Prayers, Families Send Armor

When the 1544th Transportation Company of the Illinois National Guard was preparing to leave for Iraq in February, relatives of the soldiers offered to pay to weld steel plates on the unit's trucks to protect against roadside bombs. The Army told them not to, because it would provide better protection in Iraq, relatives said.

Seven months later, many of the company's trucks still have no armor, soldiers and relatives said, despite running some of the most dangerous missions in Iraq and incurring the highest rate of injuries and deaths among the Illinois units deployed there.

"This problem is very extensive," said Paul Rieckhoff, a former infantry platoon leader with the Florida National Guard in Iraq who now runs an organization called Operation Truth, an advocacy group for soldiers and veterans.

Though soldiers of all types have complained about equipment in Iraq, part-timers in the National Guard and Reserve say that they have a particular disadvantage because they start off with outdated or insufficient gear. They have been deployed with faulty radios, unreliable trucks and, most alarmingly for many, a shortage of soundly armored vehicles in a land regularly convulsed by roadside attacks, according to soldiers, relatives and outside military experts.

"This just points to an extreme lack of planning ," said Ms. Kumlin, who is 31 and a student. "My husband is part of the second wave that went to Iraq."

Video of Bush making fun of WMD search

Yeah, loosing weapons to terrorists must be a barrel of laughs to you, heh GW ?

Yahoo! News - GOP Files Complaint Vs. L.A. Radio Hosts

LOS ANGELES - Republicans have filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission (news - web sites) accusing two Los Angeles radio personalities of 'criminal behavior' for attacking a local GOP congressman on the air and endorsing his Democratic opponent.

The National Republican Congressional Committee contends that criticism of Rep. David Dreier (news, bio, voting record) by KFI-AM talk show hosts John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou represents an illegal in-kind donation of more than $25,000 to Dreier's challenger.

'This behavior is illegal and must be appropriately punished,' the committee said."

5 EYEWITNESS NEWS confirms video shows Al-Qaqaa

5 EYEWITNESS NEWScan say with much more certainty tonight our crew was at Al Qaaqa. We can also report that at least one of the bunkers our crew saw there contained the high explosive HMX. That is the same type of explosive missing in Iraq, and an ingredient used to manufacture nuclear weapons.If the military was at Al Qaqaa on April 13, 2003, like they say they were, it now appears they left at least some HMX behind,

The new information comes from a tag, about the size of a half dollar bound around one bunker door. After enhancing the video we found the letters IAEA, International Atomic Energy Agency, the group inspecting weapons for the UN, on the seal. It also had a number that started with the digits 3611. A former IAEA inspector who was at Al Qaqaa says that matches the series he remembers using there.

Multiple sources now tell us seals like that were placed on bunkers for one reason. 'What's behind those doors in HMX' says physicist David Albright. 'They only sealed bunkers that had HMX in them. they weren't sealing bunkers that had RDX, detonation cords or other explosive devices.'

Today at the Pentagon, Major Austin Pearson, who says his unit removed explosives from Al Qaqaa on April 13, said 'I did not see any IAEA seals at the locations we went into.'

Also new tonight, weapons inspectors looked at images from our video, a tag on a box reading '1.1 D'. They tell us it is consistent with containers of HMX they found at Al Qaqaa. HMX was closely monitored because it could be used in a nuclear weapons program."

Editor's Note: If you go to the original source of this story (http://www.kstp.com/article/stories/S3777.html?cat=1) you will see link to a video report that shows that HMX was still present at Al Qaqaa 8 days after the fall of Baghdad.
Here are more links to stories with video:


Matthew Yglesias: The Widening Reality-Based Community

Matthew Yglesias: The Widening Reality-Based Community

One of the odd advantages that George W. Bush's nonsensical manner of running the government has provided is that it opens his administration up to so many different lines of attack that it's very hard for the anti-Bush forces to form a coherent critique. You've got Jim Henley and Marshall Whittman who agree about approximately nothing, joined in their opposition to Bush. I don't agree with either of them about much, but I certainly agree about the opposition to Bush thing. But now that shrill, Bush-hating libertarian Gene Healy is suggesting "Reality-Based Community" T-shirts it appears that the anti-Bush coalition may at last, thanks to an anonymous White House advisor, have found a unifying theme. We are not merely the Ancient and Hermetic Order of the Shrill, which may turn off some of your more mild-mannered Bush opponents, we are, proud members of the Reality-Based Community. On the other side is, well, the other guys.

Munitions Issue Dwarfs the Big Picture (washingtonpost.com)

Munitions Issue Dwarfs the Big Picture (washingtonpost.com)

The 377 tons of Iraqi explosives whose reported disappearance has dominated the past few days of presidential campaigning represent only a tiny fraction of the vast quantities of other munitions unaccounted for since the fall of Saddam Hussein's government 18 months ago.

U.S. military commanders estimated last fall that Iraqi military sites contained 650,000 to 1 million tons of explosives, artillery shells, aviation bombs and other ammunition. The Bush administration cited official figures this week showing about 400,000 tons destroyed or in the process of being eliminated. That leaves the whereabouts of more than 250,000 tons unknown.

Truespeak: Going Fishing? Using Soldiers as bait

Truespeak: Going Fishing?
Great blog!
George W. Bush likes to say that our soldiers are dying for a noble cause. While I mean no disrespect to anyone in uniform, past or present, I wonder how the families of our soldiers would feel to know that their sons and daughters are being used as bait to draw the terrorists into Iraq. They are the proverbial carrot on a stick in Bush's plan. It sickens me to think that our children are being dangled in front of the terrorist's noses in order to entice them out of their holes."

Response to neocons Flycatcher doctrine

The myth of fighting them over there

In other words:

Bush sent our troops to be TERRORIST BAIT and without body armor

That is areason to vote for the MOFU ?!?!?

Looting of Iraq Weapons - A collection of tales

How to arm an insurgent Guerilla for free
less than 4 soldiers per weapons cache
the US military had identified about 900 sensitive weapons sites in Iraq but had assigned only about 3,500 soldiers to deal with them. (4 soldiers to guard an area roughly the size of Manhattan, like Al QaQaa)

Al-QaQaa: 380 tons of potent explosives
The famous 380 Tons of Explosives Missing in Iraq

Ukhaider - Artillery shells and small-arms ammunition
Aid workers say they told military about looting of weapons depot in October, 2003, but were told that there were not enough troops to seal off the facility

Anaconda - explosives for IED bombs
The looting of Iraq's arsenal
another major weapons and ammunition storage facility which was "stripped of enough weapons and explosives to equip anti-U.S. insurgents with enough IEDs for years to come"

Iraq Biotech - HIV and black fever virus
Eyewitness to a failure in Iraq reveals the looting of Iraq's CDC

Nuclear Waste- dirty bomb material
March 2003: Dirty bomb material looted

6 out of 7 nuclear waste facilities looted: much of the radioactive material gone

See more details at my diary at Daily Kos

Broken soldiers: Lasting head injuries on the rise in Iraq

U.S. Marines carry a wounded comrade to a waiting helicopter during the battle for the city of Husaybah, Iraq, on April 17. So far in April, more than 900 soldiers and Marines have been wounded in Iraq, more than twice the number wounded in October, the previous high.

BAGHDAD, Iraq — The soldiers were lifted into the helicopters under a moonless sky, their bandaged heads grossly swollen by trauma, their forms silhouetted by the glow from the row of medical monitors laid out across their bodies, from ankle to neck.

An orange screen atop the feet registered blood pressure and heart rate. The blue screen at the knees announced the level of postoperative pressure on the brain. On the stomach, a small gray readout recorded the level of medicine pumping into the body. And the slender plastic box atop the chest signaled that a respirator still breathed for the lungs under it.

At the door to the busiest hospital in Iraq, a wiry doctor bent over the worst-looking case, an Army gunner with coarse stitches holding his scalp together and a bolt protruding from the top of his head. Lt. Col. Jeff Poffenbarger checked a number on the blue screen, announced it dangerously high and quickly pushed a clear liquid through a syringe into the gunner's bloodstream. The number fell like a rock.

"We're just preparing for something a brain-injured person should not do two days out, which is travel to Germany," the neurologist said. He smiled grimly and started toward the UH-60 Black Hawk thwump-thwumping out on the helipad, waiting to spirit out of Iraq one more of the hundreds of Americans wounded here this month.

Al QaQaa Timeline visual

Michael in chicago's blog
Great blog!


From the Kerry-Edwards Online Forum


Mickey Herskowitz - a ghost writer for both George W. Bush and George H.W. Bush - has revealed startling information about both men, which he learned from extensive candid conversations with the 41st and the 43rd presidents. Herskowitz revealed the information in a series of interviews with investigative reporter Russ Baker, which Baker tape recorded.[1]

Baker's article reveals that 'in 2003, Bush's father indicated to [Herskowitz] that he disagreed with his son's invasion of Iraq.'[2]

George W. Bush was reluctant to talk to Herskowitz about his National Guard service. But Bush did tell him 'that after transferring from his Texas Guard unit two-thirds through his six-year military obligation to work on an Alabama political campaign, he did not attend any Alabama National Guard drills at all, because he was 'excused.''[3] Bush's comments to Herskowitz 'directly contradicts his public statements that he participated in obligatory training with the Alabama National Guard.'[4]

According to Herskowitz, 'two years before the September 11 attacks, presidential candidate George W. Bush was already talking privately about attacking Iraq.'[5] In 1999, Bush said to Herskowitz, 'My father had all this political capital built up when he drove the Iraqis out of Kuwait and he wasted it. If I have a chance to invade.... if I had that much capital, I'm not going to waste it. I'm going to get everything passed that I want to get passed and I'm going to have a successful presidency.'[6]


1. 'Bush Wanted To Invade Iraq If Elected in 2000,' Russ Baker, 10/27/04, http://daily.misleader.org/ctt.asp?u=2969256&l=65896.
2. Ibid., http://daily.misleader.org/ctt.asp?u=2969256&l=65896.
3. Ibid., http://daily.misleader.org/ctt.asp?u=2969256&l=65896.
4. Ibid., http://daily.misleader.org/ctt.asp?u=2969256&l=65896.
5. Ibid., http://daily.misleader.org/ctt.asp?u=2969256&l=65896.
6. Ibid., http://daily.misleader.org/ctt.asp?u=2969256&l=65896.

Talking Points: Al QaQaa looting in November 2003!!!

Talking Points

A journalist observed Iraqi Islamists looting weapons and explosives from al Qaqaa as late as November 2003.

"I was utterly stupefied to see that a place like that was pretty much unguarded and that insurgents could help themselves for months on end. We were there for a long time and no one disturbed the group while they were loading their truck," she says.
-- Josh Marshall


Vast amounts of weapons-related material missing, Pentagon official says

Huge amounts of arms and ammunition were stolen from military sites, and there's "ample evidence" that Iraqi insurgents are firing looted weapons at U.S. troops and using some of them in car bombs and improvised explosive devices, said a senior U.S. intelligence official, speaking on condition of anonymity.

U.N. officials also are concerned about the disappearance of sensitive equipment and controlled materials that could be used to develop nuclear, biological or chemical weapons.

"If this equipment is finding itself on the open market, then anybody with money can buy it," said Dimitri Perricos, acting head of the U.N. Monitoring and Verification Commission (UNMOVIC), the U.N. weapons inspection agency.

The CIA has convened a "mini taskforce" of experts to assess precisely what equipment is gone and what threat it could pose if it fell into the wrong hands, said two U.S. officials.

In a new disclosure, the senior U.S. military officer and another U.S. official, who also spoke on condition he not be identified because of the sensitivity of the matter, said that an Iraqi working for U.S. intelligence alerted U.S. troops stationed near the al Qaqaa weapons facility that the installation was being looted shortly after the fall of Baghdad on April 9, 2003.

But, they said, the troops took no apparent action to halt the pillaging.

"That was one of numerous times when Iraqis warned us that ammo dumps and other places were being looted and we weren't able to respond because we didn't have anyone to send," said a senior U.S. military officer who served in Iraq.

But, they said, the troops took no apparent action to halt the pillaging.

'That was one of numerous times when Iraqis warned us that ammo dumps and other places were being looted and we weren't able to respond because we didn't have anyone to send,' said a senior U.S. military officer who served in Iraq.

An ABC television station in Minnesota reported that one of its camera crews embedded with the 101st Airborne Division might have filmed some of the high explosives after arriving on al Qaqaa's perimeter on April 18. Experts at the International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N. agency that was monitoring al Qaqaa because the missing explosives could have been used to trigger a nuclear weapon, are examining the videotape."


From Daily Kos

The following website demonstrates that the trucks shown on Pentagon satellite photos were NOT next to bunkers containing explosives.


The site compares IAEA maps with the satellite photos and persuasively concludes that the trucks are near a storage dump that is hundreds of yards away from the nearest depot known to have HMX explosives.

Infuriating! In the face of David Kay's 'Game. Set. Match.' reaction to the ABC affiliate footage of explosives found by US troops at Al Qaqaa - remember that Kay is a man who went out of his way to absolve the administration of bad faith on WMD - nevertheless, the SCLM still presents this Pentagon photography and takes the administration's word for it.

Jamie McIntyre reported on CNN that 'We know that depot (on the Pentagon's photograph) had explosives in it.' This was an outright untruth. Why did McIntyre just take the Pentagon's word for granted? Why didn't he check the maps?

Why is NBC avoiding the story? The Washington Post, CBS, Time and Newsweek? Ideas? "

Occupation Watch:�Troops STILL short on body armor

The Pentagon declared in January that ALL soldiers had the new body armor.

Good God! What a bunch of liars!!!

October 14, 2003: WASHINGTON -- About one-quarter of the 130,000 U.S. troops in Iraq still have not been issued a new type of ceramic body armor strong enough to stop bullets fired from assault rifles.

Delays in funding, production and shipping mean it will be December before all troops in Iraq will have the vests, which were introduced four years ago, military officials say.

Congress approved $310 million in April to buy 300,000 more of the vests, with 30,000 destined for the troops in Iraq. Of that money, however, only about $75 million has reached the Army office responsible for overseeing the vests' manufacture and distribution, said David Nelson, an official in that office.

Angry members of Congress have denounced the Pentagon. They say up to 44,000 troops--more than the Pentagon figure--lack the best vests because of the sluggish supply chain. Relatives of some soldiers have resorted to buying body armor in the United States and shipping it to troops, congressional critics say.

'I got a letter from a young soldier in Baghdad saying that the men in his group were concerned that they had cheap armor that was incapable of stopping bullets,' Rep. Ted Strickland (D-Ohio) said.

The Interceptor vests include removable, front and back ceramic plates that can stop bullets such as the 7.62mm rounds fired by Kalashnikov rifles common in Iraq and Afghanistan. Older-model vests can protect against shrapnel and other low-speed projectiles but not high-velocity rifle rounds.

Several soldiers serving in the countries have credited the Interceptor vests with saving their lives. Each vest with plates weighs more than 16 pounds and costs more than $1,500."

Salon: Republicans underestimate black/ youth vote

Killer view from someone in the trenches

I am a 21-year-old African-American/loyal Salon reader/ frequent writer to you. Although I love you all a lot and, like you (assuming so), I am a liberal, I just feel I have to scream at you for a bit. Almost two weeks ago, I sent a letter to you guys telling you how the new Eminem song "Mosh" has many young'ns riled up, angry, motivated and against Bush. Now 10 days or so later, not only you guys but many publications are up on it. My point? Maybe you guys should listen more to us young'ns, maybe have a young person consultant of sorts. After all, we will decide this election, as I will point out later in this letter.

First, let me just say prepare for the death of polls, as that will be the dominant story coming out of election night. First blacks. ...

Locally, as all politics are, as a person living in Louisiana, I can tell you that the more racist persons here are a part of the Republican Party and to us the GOP chooses them over us. Plus, we are highly motivated. You just don't realize how pissed we are from Florida last time...

Next, us young'ns. We aren't as stupid as people think. Simply put, we are in Iraq fighting or we know someone there, we have no health insurance, no jobs, and are generally pro-human rights (not for the gay marriage amendment, PATRIOT Act, etc.). We aren't going to vote for Bush, period. Kerry will take about 70 percent of the young vote.

I am predicting, collectively there will at least 20 million more voters from these two groups, young'ns and blacks. You maybe think "yeah the f*ck right" -- but trust me. On average 30 percent of African-Americans vote. Expect a minimum of 50 percent this time, maybe close to double. That is anywhere between 7 to 9 million more blacks voting. Young'ns will have a similar margin. Again, we at most vote at a 40 percent rate. Young'ns will easily double their numbers, going from 18 million to about 36 million.

Here are things to ponder.

Kerry wins Arizona: This state has the most college students per capita. Kerry will win Flagstaff, Tucson and Tempe. Throw in Native Americans, Latins, and even moderate Republicans who will vote Democratic (they got the Democratic governor elected), and oh I forgot all the Independents, Kerry will win this state.

Kerry wins Nevada
: This state simply comes down to Vegas. Kerry will win Vegas by a big enough margin to cancel out the rest of the state.

Kerry win Missouri: What people either don't realize or just don't give a fuck to report is that the black mobilization efforts in St. Louis and Kansas City are second to none, literally. Florida got the attention last time, but people seem to have forgotten that blacks there were denied the right to vote at many polling places that were closed on them. Throw in college towns, Kerry wins.

Kerry wins Minnesota: I can't believe people actually think this state is close. What people tend to forget is that voters here can register as you vote. Throw in Ventura's endorsement and the young'ns.

Kerry wins Colorado: Sometimes people just got to listen to the streets. I have family and friends in Colorado, and what they tell me is that "Fahrenheit 9/11" has had a huge impact there, so much so they are still talking about it, and as people watched it they were changed by it. How can a tradtional red state have a rich ass Senate candidate getting his ass kicked and polls showing Bush/Kerry within the margin. Kerry wins.

Kerry wins Texas: PSYCH! But just as people are saying Kerry wins CA, NY, and NJ by closer margins, so does Bush take his own state. I'll go out on a margin and say Bush gets no more than 60 percent in his own state. Holla.

Just to save space and time: Kerry wins Arkansas, New Mexico, Ohio, Florida, N. Hampshire, and Penn. He may lose Iowa, as I really don't know much about that state. Kerry wins nationally in a blowout. Election night is over as central time zone states finish reporting. Why? Because of blacks and young'ns. Bush's people know this, as their strategy is to turn out their base while suppressing our base ... f*ckers.

I ask that in the future that you at least take in more opinions from us young'ns and Afro Americans.

Voter information:

From Kos

Important voter information for you to have and to share:

1. If you are not sure what the poll opening & closing times are for your state, or know somebody who needs this information, go here:


2. If you or somebody you know is registered, but unsure of where your voting location is, go here:


Study: 100,00 Civilian Iraqi Deaths Since War

Study: 100,00 Civilian Iraqi Deaths Since War

LONDON (Reuters) - Tens of thousands of Iraqis have been killed in violence since the U.S.-led invasion last year, American public health experts have calculated in a report that estimates there were 100,000 "excess deaths" in 18 months.

The rise in the death rate was mainly due to violence and much of it was caused by U.S. air strikes on towns and cities.

"Making conservative assumptions, we think that about 100,000 excess deaths, or more have happened since the 2003 invasion of Iraq," said Les Roberts of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in a report published online by The Lancet medical journal.

"The use of air power in areas with lots of civilians appears to be killing a lot of women and children," Roberts told Reuters.


MoveOn Election Protection card

Together, we can make sure that what happened in 2000 doesn't happen
again. We've put together a wallet-sized card with all the numbers you
need to know if someone interferes with your right to vote.

Daily Kos :: FLORIDA: Bush EPA to Test Chemicals on Babies

From Daily kos

This is barbaric.

This program will use poor children in Florida as lab rats for the chemical industry.

Here is the study...
Children's Environmental Exposure Research Study (CHEERS)
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is conducting a Children's Environmental Exposure Research Study (CHEERS) to better understand how young children come into contact with pesticides and other chemicals in their homes. Children can come into contact with various chemicals in their homes through the air they breathe, food they eat and the surfaces they touch.

Here is what the families agree to do...

"The children chosen to participate must live in homes with potentially high pesticide use. Their parents must agree to spray or have pesticides sprayed inside their homes routinely during the two-year study period, and will receive up to $970 for participating.
The homes and children will be monitored five or six times during the study for exposure levels before and after pesticide applications. Chemical concentrations will be measured in air, dust, and urine samples, and by analyzing chemicals absorbed in clothing."

This experiment on babies is at least partly funded by Bush's friends in the chemical industry.

DEAD LETTER OFFICE: GeorgeWBush.org: Bush/Cheney in 2004!

Bushies mailed compromising letters to wrong domain!!!


OCTOBER, 2004: Recently, we at GeorgeWBush.org happened to notice that our mail server had a default 'catch-all' mailbox, which for the past several months had been quietly gathering any and all e-mails addressed to [INSERT-ANYTHING-HERE]@georgewbush.org. We felt the need to share.

10.26.2004: Readers may be interested to learn that the 'caging' e-mails below (one and two) are indeed the same documents referenced in Greg Palast's latest BBC Newsnight investigation. We sent them to him last week prior to assembling this page."


Black T-Shirts depose a corrupt President in South America

I heard the story from my relatives in there. But here it is in English: "In a weekday of August 1992, President Collor urged his followers to lend him their support in the impeachment crisis going to the streets in the next week-end with the national colors, yellow and green.

The first reaction of the opposition was to counter-demonstrate with black, to tell Brazil was mourning the fact it had a corrupt government. Anyway pro-Collor demonstrators showed themselves in negligible numbers, while millions protested him throughout the country."

Daily Kos :: the politics of Mosh II

Kid Oakland says it all

Watching this video is one of those experiences that just changes you. Mosh has a transformative power. Like, before I clicked on my computer this morning and downloaded the thing....well, I thought and felt one way...about Eminem, the youth vote, our troops, the state of oppositional culture in America, the meaning of this election, what George Bush means to young Americans...and afterwards, I just had huge fucking scales fall from my eyes..."

Daily Kos :: the politics of Mosh

Daily Kos :: the politics of Mosh: "eminem's politics

There is a brilliant line in this video that just keeps bouncing around in my head:

Let me be the voice, and your strength, and your choice
Let me simplify the rhyme, just to amplify the noise
Try to amplify the times it, and multiply it by six
Teen million people are equal of this high pitch
Maybe we can reach Al Quaida through my speech....

at which point we see Tenant 508 turning a radio dish from the top of a building.

On top of advocating a thought-out, political, pragmatic way out for his audience's rage and anger....voting on November 2nd....Eminem, in this passage expresses something that goes beyond that. In essence, Eminem is positing a world in which thoughtful citizens who are victims of the powers that be, might actually be able to communicate with one another more effectively than those powers. It is a decentered, free speech, ground-up democracy that Eminem is preaching here.

This is powerful stuff. And there are more hints of this in other parts of the video. November 2nd is not depicted as an end point for the political struggle Eminem describes...it is just a beginning. It's not an answer, it's just a necessary first step. Part of which is a rebirth of oppositional culture and informed participatory democracy...and part of which is a recentering of the political process on the voices of those who have not been listened to.

We mosh for the future of our next generation, to speak and be heard, Mr. President, Mr. Senator

Can you hear us?......."

New Florida vote scandal feared

BBC NEWS | Programmes | Newsnight | New Florida vote scandal feared: "A secret document obtained from inside Bush campaign headquarters in Florida suggests a plan - possibly in violation of US law - to disrupt voting in the state's African-American voting districts, a BBC Newsnight investigation reveals."

Get ready for a November surprise

I agree!!!

Particularly after seing Mosh from Eminem.
Salon.com News | Get ready for a November surprise: "Get ready for a November surprise
A 'black young'n' says the polls and pundits just don't get the new voter realities. Kerry wins in a blowout, predicts this Salon reader."

GOP spooked by explosives story tries the same smear they tried w/ McCain

Linda Chavez: The media plays 'trick or treat'

The media are too busy repackaging old Iraq news in an October offensive against President George W. Bush's reelection to investigate truly startling evidence unearthed this week that the Communist Party may have been directing John Kerry's anti-war activities in the early 1970s. The evidence, contained in captured communist records on file at the Vietnam Center at Texas Tech University"

the networks and major dailies were too busy covering a hysterical report that 380 tons of explosives went missing from an Iraqi depot in the early days of the U.S. invasion to inquire into John Kerry's dubious activities in the anti-war movement.

On Monday, the New York Times "broke" the story of the purported looting of weapons from an Iraqi arms depot. "Huge Cache of Explosives Vanished from Site in Iraq" screamed the front-page Times headline, which was picked up by all the major networks and newspapers, not to mention the Kerry campaign. CBS's "60 Minutes" was also set to air a story on Sunday -- two days before the election -- aimed at convincing viewers that the administration had carelessly let the al Qaqaa depot be looted of its powerful explosives, the kind that might even be used to detonate a nuclear device. "Our plan was to run the story on Oct. 31, but it became clear that it wouldn't hold," CBS executive producer Jeff Fager said in a statement.

In fact, the "missing explosives" story was more media campaign ploy than real news....

Yahoo! News - Bush Sued in Chile Over Prisoner Abuse

Chile libre! Chile libre!

SANTIAGO, Chile - A coalition of small leftist political groups has sued President Bush (news - web sites) and other U.S. government officials for the abuses against prisoners at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq (news - web sites).

The action was widely considered symbolic. Supporters described it as an 'act of dignity' that 'represents millions of Chileans who reject the violence and terrorism represented by the figure of Bush.'"

It's all about Choices you made in life

Bush has fallen victim to his own hubris

In the end, US voters will not be frightened into becoming a nation that disdains decency

Sidney Blumenthal

The unmaking of the president 2004 began on September 11 2001. By September 10, George Bush's poll numbers had reached 50%, the lowest of any president at that early point in his tenure. ... From the start, Bush ran a government based on secrecy, handed over the departments and agencies to more than 100 industry executives and lobbyists appointed to key positions, and exhibited belligerence towards anyone who raised a question about his right-wing imperatives. His bullying prompted Republican Senator James Jeffords of Vermont to cross the aisle, throwing control of the Senate to the Democrats. In only months, Bush's incompetence and arrogance had induced paralysis.

The mid-term elections of 2002 ratified Bush's hyper-radicalism. In the face of the "war president", the congressional Democratic leadership demonstrated political ineptitude, division and confusion, and the Republicans tarred them as unpatriotic. Bush's belief in his inevitability became more intoxicating.

The "war president" has fallen victim to his own hubris. As Thucydides wrote: "To conceive extravagant pretensions from success in war is to forget how hollow is the confidence by which you are elated. For if many ill-conceived plans have succeeded through the still greater fatuity of an opponent, many more, apparently well laid, have on the contrary ended in disgrace.

Meanwhile, the people's own mobilisation has produced new voter registrations in the millions, and hundreds of thousands of activists have spread in the last week throughout the battleground states. The Republicans desperately cast out ploys to suppress these voters, many of them African-American. In the end, the American people refuse to be frightened into becoming an unrecognisable nation that disdains, as the Declaration of Independence said, "a decent respect to the opinions of mankind".


More Iraqis being trained than US and its allies are capable of protecting.

And they protected the WMD sites ? Pu-lease!

Yahoo! News - Allawi Accuses Foreign Troops Of Negligence In Massacre

More Iraqis being trained than US and its allies are capable of protecting

In Washington, a former top occupation security official said that more Iraqis were being trained for the country's security forces than the United States and its allies are capable of protecting."

Yahoo! News - Experts Worry About Missing Iraqi Arms

Experts Worry About Missing Iraqi Arms

Tue Oct 26, 3:38 PM ET

Middle East - AP

By WILLIAM J. KOLE, Associated Press Writer

VIENNA, Austria - Revelations that nearly 400 tons of conventional explosives have disappeared in Iraq (news - web sites) have experts worrying that other weapons might also be in jeopardy of falling into insurgent or terrorist hands.

AP Photo

Even the State Department concedes it can't provide "100 percent security for 100 percent of the sites." And by all accounts, Iraq is studded with weapons depots — many in places where U.S.-led forces are preoccupied by fierce fighting.

Troubling questions about which other weapons could be vulnerable to looting have arisen since the U.N. nuclear agency's warning this week that 377 tons of non-nuclear explosives vanished from the former Al-Qaqaa military installation south of Baghdad.

International Atomic Energy Agency spokeswoman Melissa Fleming said Tuesday that the Iraqis have not told the IAEA about any other missing materials since their Oct. 10 letter stating that the weapons vanished from Al-Qaqaa as a result of "theft and looting ... due to lack of security" sometime after coalition forces took control of the capital.

But she said the agency's chief Iraq inspector, Jacques Baute, "would encourage more such reporting on what has happened to sites subject to IAEA verification." IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei reported the explosives' disappearance to the U.N. Security Council on Monday.

The missing explosives have become a hot issue in the final week of the presidential campaign, with the White House stressing that the U.S.-led coalition has destroyed hundreds of thousands of munitions and the Kerry campaign calling the disappearance the latest in a "tragic series of blunders."

"There was an utter lack of curiosity to follow up on what was well-known to the U.N.," said David Albright, a former U.N. weapons inspector.

"There was a systematic failure of the military, which overran the country and left all these explosives behind without protecting its rear," he said. "The military should have had the sense to either secure high explosives and armaments or blow them up as they went through."

The Al-Qaqaa explosives included HMX and RDX, key components in plastic explosives, which insurgents in Iraq have used in repeated bomb attacks on the U.S.-led multinational force.

Among Iraq's known weapons depots is one near Khaldiya — about 50 miles west of the capital — where a suicide car bomber attacked a U.S. convoy Monday, destroying at least two Humvees. Others have been identified around Tikrit and near Karbala — places where U.S.-led forces have battled insurgents and been targeted by car bombs.

Yahoo! News - Al-Qaqaa Spokesman Says No Weapons Search

EVANSVILLE, Ind. - The first U.S. military unit to reach the Al-Qaqaa military installation after the invasion of Iraq (news - web sites) did not have orders to search for the nearly 400 tons of explosives that Iraqi officials say were stolen from the site sometime following the fall of Baghdad, the unit spokesman said Tuesday.

When the troops from the 101st Airborne Division's 2nd Brigade arrived at the Al-Qaqaa base a day or so after Baghdad's fall on April 9, 2003, there were already looters throughout the facility, Lt. Col. Fred Wellman, deputy public affairs officer for the unit, told The Associated Press.

The soldiers "secured the area they were in and looked in a limited amount of bunkers to ensure chemical weapons were not present in their area," Wellman wrote in an e-mail message. "Bombs were found but not chemical weapons in that immediate area.

"Orders were not given from higher to search or to secure the facility or to search for HE type munitions, as they (high-explosive weapons) were everywhere in Iraq," he wrote.

His remarks appeared to confirm the observations of an NBC reporter embedded with the army unit who said Tuesday that she saw no signs that the Americans searched for the powerful explosives during their 24 hours at the facility en route to Baghdad, 30 miles to the north.

The disappearance, which the International Atomic Energy Agency reported Monday to the U.N. Security Council, has raised questions about why the United States didn't do more to secure the facility and failed to allow full international inspections to resume after the March 2003 invasion.

Terrorists Thank Allah For G. W. Bush

Yahoo! News Message Boards Politics News

"Terrorists Thank Allah For G. W. Bush
by: jack_cough_bush 10/26/04 07:21 pm
Msg: 300172 of 300258
19 recommendations

What a blessing Bush has been for the fanatics.

He allowed Bin Laden to escape

He attacked Hussein who Bin Laden hated

He alienated 95% of the Arab world

He alienated 74% of the rest of the world at large

He allowed the looting of artifacts from the cradle of civilization thus alienating scholars who may have helped

He left the Iraq borders wide open allowing every nutbag fundamentalist funded by his friends the Saudi to pour in and surround our troops

He left a small mountain of easily disguised, highly explosive matter unguarded so the terrorists can blow us up for the next ten years.

Not bad (hard) work for a lifelong underacheiver who slunk into office without a majority of support.

Crazy Cheney Comment du jour

From the Kerry-Edwards Online Forum

"If our troops had not gone into Iraq, that is 400,000 tonnes of weapons and explosives that would be in the hands of (former Iraqi President) Saddam Hussein, who would still be sitting in his palace instead of jail," Cheney said.

As opposed to where they are now?


New Kerry Ad on Bush Failure to Secure Explosives

John Kerry for President - New Kerry Ad on Bush Failure to Secure Explosives /Misjudgments that Have Made America Less Secure

Why the Religious feel America Liberals

From my e-mail

Report Details Hostility to Religious Expression in America

U.S. Senator: Purging Campaign 'Pervasive, National, Well Organized'

By Jody Brown
October 21, 2004

(AgapePress) - Thanks to the efforts of a Texas-based legal group, the nine members of one Senate subcommittee now have in their hands a document that outlines literally hundreds of examples of violations of individuals' religious freedoms -- in the United States.

In September, the U.S. State Department reported in its sixth Annual Report to Congress on International Religious Freedom that eight national governments are designated as being of particular concern as violators of internationally acknowledged religious freedom rights. Those eight countries are North Korea, China, Burma, Iran, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Vietnam, and Eritrea. (See Related Story)

Now comes a report from the Liberty Legal Institute (LLI) in Plano, Texas, that reveals what the group describes as "widespread religious hostility" across the U.S. That report, titled "Examples of Hostility to Religious Expression in the Public Square" [PDF], documents acts of hostility towards, and discrimination against, expressions of faith by students, faculty, government employees, churches, religious organizations, and ordinary citizens.

Kelly Shackelford, chief counsel for Liberty Legal, says the report's contents should get people's attention. "It is amazing that a document like this has never been assembled before," the attorney says. "When you look at what is actually happening around the nation, it's truly scary."

ACLU, Others Tagged
The LLI report was presented on Wednesday (October 20) to the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Property, chaired by Republican John Cornyn of Texas. During a subcommittee hearing in early June, it was suggested by some of those testifying that religious freedom was not an issue in America. Cornyn was not convinced by those detractors. The LLI document backs him up.

"The campaign to purge expressions of faith from the public square is pervasive, national, and well organized," the senator states in a press release. "The report not only contains page after page and example after example of hostility to religious expression, it also notes how this effort to cleanse the public square of all religious expressions is carefully orchestrated and organized by some of the nation's leading liberal special interest groups."

The 51-page document identifies three organizations that LLI contends have led a nationwide campaign to remove religious expression from the public square: the American Civil Liberties Union, Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, and People for the American Way.

Cornyn's press release accuses all three of those organizations of actively litigating against such things as equal access for religious groups in public schools, school choice programs that would permit needy children to attend parochial and nonsectarian schools alike, and voluntary, student-led religious expression.

The senator says he was not surprised during his subcommittee's hearings to hear from those groups that there was not a problem with religious expression in the United States. "[N]o one will actually admit to being hostile to religious expression," he says. "They know full well that they are far more likely to advance their extreme ideology through the courts, rather than through the democratic process."

Concrete Examples
Following are some samples of hostility to religious expression, as provided in the Liberty Legal Institute report:

  • A 12-year-old elementary school student was reprimanded by a public school in St. Louis, Missouri, for quietly saying a prayer before lunch in the school cafeteria, according to a federal lawsuit.
  • Public high school students in Massachusetts started a Bible club and tried to hand out candy canes with a biblical passage attached. The school suspended the students for distributing the candy canes.
  • A public school sixth grader in Boulder, Colorado, tried to complete her book report assignment by presenting the Bible, but was forbidden from doing so by her teacher. She was also forbidden from bringing the Bible to school.
  • A Texas school district refused to hire a public school teacher for the position of assistant principal, because her children attended a private Christian school, in violation of the district's policy that the children of all principals and administrators attend public school.
  • A Vietnam veteran and member of an honor guard at a New Jersey veterans' cemetery was fired for saying "God bless you and this family" to the family of a deceased veteran, even though the family had consented to the blessing beforehand.

Copies of the report are available from Senator Cornyn's website [PDF].

Yahoo! News - Iraq, Rehnquist May Be 'October Surprises'

WASHINGTON - An 'October surprise' is part of the political folklore of presidential campaigns, and just eight days before the election, the unexpected is indeed happening.

Monday's disclosure that 80-year-old Chief Justice William Rehnquist (news - web sites) has thyroid cancer immediately propelled the Supreme Court and the hot-button abortion issue onto the front burner, while the revelation about the looting of 377 tons of high explosives in Iraq (news - web sites) gave John Kerry (news - web sites) an opening to accuse President Bush (news - web sites) of 'incredible incompetence.'

Another troubling issue for Bush was the execution-style slaying of about 50 newly trained Iraqi soldiers, underscoring the chaos that still rages 19 months after the president ordered a U.S.-led invasion. As awful as the massacre was, it would have been much worse for Bush in political terms if the victims had been Americans."

Kerry Says Bush Fails U.S. Commander in Chief Test

GREEN BAY, Wis. (Reuters) - Democratic challenger John Kerry (news - web sites) turned the tables on Republicans who call him unfit to be commander in chief and said on Tuesday President Bush (news - web sites) failed the 'fundamental obligation' of the job -- to keep America as safe as possible.

The Massachusetts senator accused Bush of trying to hide until after next week's election news that 380 tons of powerful explosives were taken from an Iraqi military installation following the U.S.-led invasion in March 2003.

'He has stood in front of the American people day after day, telling us how much progress we are making in Iraq (news - web sites) and how much safer we are under his leadership,' Kerry said. 'And what did the president have to say about the missing explosives? Not a word.'

'Mr. President, what else are you being silent about? What else are you keeping from the American people?' he asked.

With the deadlocked election a week away and campaigning in the key battleground state of Wisconsin, as was Bush, Kerry kept pummeling the president on national security, an issue polls have shown favors the president."

Kerry: Bush Won't Own Up to Bad Decisions

GREEN BAY, Wis. - Democratic candidate John Kerry (news - web sites) accused President Bush (news - web sites) on Tuesday of hiding bad decisions and raised the specter of bad news still to be revealed. Bush invited Democrats to cross over to his campaign as it began its final week, arguing that their party was no longer led by men of strength and resolve.

Kerry said a stream of bad news coming out of Iraq (news - web sites) showed the Bush administration glossing over the reality of the situation there.

'Mr. President, what else are you being silent about? What else are you keeping from the American people?' Kerry said in Green Bay."

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: A Culture of Cover-Ups

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: A Culture of Cover-Ups
What other mistakes did the administration make? If partisan appointees like Mr. Goss continue to control the intelligence agencies, we may never know."

A Critique of Thomas Gold's Claims for Abiotic Oil

No Free Lunch, Part 1:
A Critique of Thomas Gold's Claims for Abiotic Oil

by Jean Laherrere
edited by
Dale Allen Pfeiffer

[The following paper is a critique of the writings of Thomas Gold,
written by Jean Laherrere. It is a scientific dialogue and contains many
technical terms and references which may be nearly unfathomable to the
layperson. However, it is a very important discussion because it lays
bare many of the errors in Gold's arguments. Unfortunately, Thomas Gold
is no longer with us to respond to these criticisms. However, this
critique has been floating around in one form or another for a few years
now, and it is not unreasonable to assume that Thomas Gold was aware of it.

Jean Laherrere has told me that he sent a copy of this critique (along
with other materials critical of abiotic theory) to V.A. Krayushkin, the
main Russian proponent of abiotic oil, in 2001, shortly before a
conference where both men were to present papers. Dr. Krayushkin
canceled his appearance and has since gone out of his way to avoid
addressing Jean Laherrere's criticism. Jean's comments on the
Dneiper-Donets Basin will be presented in the second part of this
series. If a scientist cannot or will not defend his theory against fair
scientific scrutiny, then his argument is immediately caste into doubt.

For the layperson, before attempting to read this paper it is first
necessary to recognize that hydrocarbons are a large and complex family
of compounds. At one end of this family, we have single carbon compounds
such as Methane (one atom of carbon surrounded by 4 atoms of hydrogen,
chemical formula: CH4) and Carbon Dioxide (one carbon atom bonded to two
oxygen atoms, chemical formula: CO2). At the other end of this family we
have complex hydrocarbons where numerous carbon atoms form linked chains
of up to 24 carbon atoms with attached hydrogen and hydroxyl (Oxygen and
Hydrogen: OH) combinations, and 6 carbon rings (benzene rings). An
example of a complex hydrocarbon with a branched chain is
2,2,4-Trimethylene (isooctane), a component of gasoline with an octane
rating of 100. An example of a compound based on a carbon ring is
Toluene, another component of gasoline with an octane rating of 120.
Petroleum is a mixture of thousands of different complex hydrocarbons,
which are classified into useful groups based on their boiling points.
Here is a breakdown of various major components of petroleum with their
corresponding number of carbon atoms.

No scientist has ever argued that simple hydrocarbons such as methane
cannot originate inorganically. Methane and carbon dioxide are the major
components in the atmosphere of the gas giants of our outer solar system
(Saturn, Jupiter, et cetera). And it is believed that the early
atmosphere of the Earth consisted mostly of these gases, until they
leaked into space. Nor is there much question that simple hydrocarbons
could possibly be generated abiotically within the Earth. However, the
quantity of methane which might be generated abiotically is likely to be

When we move on to more complex hydrocarbons, this becomes another
matter. Here we must look at how stable these molecules are at varying
combinations of temperature and pressure similar to what is found at
depth in the Earth. While some lab experiments have produced somewhat
complex hydrocarbons at pressures and temperatures consistent with the
upper mantle, they have not explained how these compounds would remain
stable as they slowly rose to the crust though zones where pressure was
not sufficient to hold them together but where temperatures were still
high enough to break them down into methane.

Also, when testing a scientific hypothesis, it is necessary to ascertain
whether a phenomenon can be achieved by any mechanism other than that
which is central to the hypothesis. If there are other possible
mechanisms, then they must be ruled out before any particular test can
be claimed to support a certain hypothesis. As Jean Laherrere points out
in his critique, Thomas Gold repeatedly failed to take other
possibilities into account. This results in sloppy science, and it
cannot hold up.

The papers referred to in this article can be found at the following web
site: http://people.cornell.edu/pages/tg21/vita.html. Quotations from
Gold's papers are italicized, followed by Jean Laherrere's critique.

The Deep Hot Biosphere June 1999
The basic idea that a large amount of microbial life exists in the pore
spaces of the rocks down to depths of between 6 and 10 kilometers arose
in the following way: natural petroleum almost always contains elevated
levels of the chemically inert gas helium and at the same time it
contains molecules that are unquestionably of biological origin. How
these two different substances meet up in oil has long been a puzzle.
A: There is no problem finding microbial life in sediments (or basement
via waters) down to 6-10 km. But that does not mean that petroleum will
be generated by these microbes. Every sedimentary basin contains some
organic matter, but to generate petroleum requires a certain threshold
of organic matter concentration, along with various other important
maturation conditions. Helium coming from the mantle can meet
hydrocarbons in reservoirs; being together does not mean that they come
both from the same source.

"Drilling deep into the crystalline granite of Sweden between 1986 and
1993 revealed substantial amounts of natural gas and oil. 80 barrels of
oil were pumped up from a depth between 5.2 km and 6.7 km."
A: Here failure is transformed into success. Ask the Swedish private
investors who put their money (along with the government) in the
drilling of two wells, trusting Gold that there should be a gas field in
the basement (fractured by an asteroid 368 Ma [Millions of years] ago).
The American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) Explorer of a
few years ago described seepage of oil in the area coming from
sedimentary Silurian rocks. Tar seeping from the granite had been used
by the Vikings to seal their ships long ago, and lakes in the Siljan
Ring sometimes bubble up methane. Sediments have been stripped away
recently by Ice Age glaciers. With oil seepage tracked to nearby
sedimentary rocks, it is very likely that these stripped away sediments
were also oil rich. Oil migrates in any reservoir up or down, so it is
not surprising to find oil in many basement reservoirs. I do not know of
any tar seep in granite which is not an overthrust over sediments (as in
Glacier National Park in Canada, which was the first discovery: 200 m of
granite thrust overlaps a sedimentary basin). The goal was commercial
gas and Gold claimed that finding a few barrels of oil is a scientific

From Science Frontiers #69, MAY-JUN 1990:
The 72-kilometer-diameter Siljan Ring in central Sweden is generally
believed to be of meteoric origin. The granite here has been shattered,
perhaps to a depth of 40 kilometers. If Gold's hypothesis about the
origin of methane is correct, methane might well be found seeping up
through this wound in the earth's outer skin. Further, the shattered
granite might prove to be a gigantic reservoir of valuable methane. The
Swedes decided to drill.

After three years and the expenditure of $40 million, drilling at the
Siljan Ring has been terminated. The drill penetrated to 6.8 kilometers
before it got stuck. No significant methane had been found.

From Science Frontiers #79, JAN-FEB 1992
Three years ago, at a depth of 6.7 kilometers, the "misguided" Swedish
drillers pumped 12 tons of oily sludge from the granite rock. "Just
drilling fluids and diesel-oil pumped down from the surface," laughed
the experts. This autumn (1991), more oil was struck in a new hole only
2.8 kilometers deep. This time, only water was used to lubricate the
drill. How are the skeptics going to explain this? Well, about 20
kilometers away, there are sedimentary rocks; perhaps the oil seeped
into the granite from there. Rejecting this interpretation, the drillers
are going deeper in hopes of finding primordial methane.

Gas Research Institute report 90/0010:
"Analysis of Drill Core from the Siljan Ring Impact Structure and
Related Processes in Shear-Zone" by Valley, John W. & Komor, Steve.
Summary: Sampling was conducted at the Siljan Ring, Sweden on the
surface from inside and outside of the ring, from drill cores in pilot
holes, and from drill core cuttings in the deep Gravberg hole. Fluid
inclusion and carbon isotope data were studied to evaluate implications
for the Deep Earth Gas hypothesis. Results indicate that carbon in the
calcite may be derived from two sources (organic decay and limestone
dissolution) and is carried downward with variable mixing by
groundwater. This suggests that the calcite formation in the Siljan Ring
does not require a contribution from mantle methane.

"Drilling into crystalline bedrock is now underway in Russia on a large
scale. More than 300 wells have been drilled to a depth of more than 5
km and are productive, as also is the giant White Tiger field offshore
Vietnam, mostly producing also from basement rock."
A: Where are the fields found in a crystalline bedrock away from
sedimentary basins? There is no drilling on a large scale in bedrock.
The Soviet superdeep well in the Kola peninsula in the basement has not
progressed beyond 12000 m for more than 10 years. Furthermore, drilling
deep wells over 5000 m does not mean drilling in crystalline bedrocks.
The White Tiger field in basement (as many others) is perfectly
explained with hydrocarbons generated from sedimentary source-rock.

Natural Gas and Oil Thomas Gold January 1997
"The presence of helium and of numerous trace metals, often in far
higher concentrations in petroleum than in its present host rock, has
then an explanation in the scavenging action of hydrocarbon fluids on
their long way up."
A: Hydrocarbons can migrate down, as very well demonstrated in the Hassi
Messaoud field where the Cambrian reservoir was exposed during Hercynian
time more than 100 km away from immature Silurian grapholitic shales.
Later covered by Triassic sandstones and sealed by thick evaporites,
within mature conditions Silurian shales generate oil which migrates
through the Triassic sandstones down to the Cambrian reservoirs.

"A 6.6 km deep well drilled in the granite of Sweden shows petroleum and
gas, and bacteria that can be cultured, all in the complete absence of
any sediments, and hence of any biological debris."
A: what about the oil seepage not far away, and the recently removed

The Origin of Methane (and Oil) in the Crust of the Earth
Thomas Gold U.S.G.S. Professional Paper 1570, The Future of Energy
Gases, 1993 http://people.cornell.edu/pages/tg21/usgs.html

"...the well known association of hydrocarbons with helium."
A: The two are associated in some fields, but not all. Helium is rarely
found outside hydrocarbon fields as wells are drilled mainly in search
of hydrocarbons.

"...there perhaps still remain more uncertainties concerning the origin
of petroleum than that of any other commonly occurring natural
substance. (H.D. Hedberg, 1964)"
A: In 1964, geochemistry for hydrocarbons was at infancy level.
Fortunately, since that time there has been great progress in
hydrocarbon geochemistry: see Tissot and the IFP Rock-Eval, Welde,
Demaison and others. There are few uncertainties remaining about the
origin of hydrocarbons.

"The capital fact to note is that petroleum was born in the depths of
the Earth, and it is only there that we must seek its origin." (D.
Mendeleev, 1877)
A: This is not what every oil company is doing, drilling in the depths
of the earth. They drill where they are most likely to find
hydrocarbons: mainly in sedimentary rocks. The first oil seep in Canada
was in basement. Some wells in Canada were drilled in a structural
setting where faulted basement rock was overthrust atop younger sediments.

"(1) Petroleum and methane are found frequently in geographic patterns
of long lines or arcs, which are related more to deep-seated large-scale
structural features of the crust, than to the smaller scale patchwork of
the sedimentary deposits."
A: These areas are characterized by rapid sedimentation (like the Gulf
of Mexico) and structures favorable for oil entrapment.

"An invasion of an area by hydrocarbon fluids from below could better
account for this than the chance of successive deposition."
A: oil does not deposit, it migrates everywhere, up and down

"(4) Methane is found in many locations where a biogenic origin is
improbable or where biological deposits seem inadequate: in great ocean
rifts in the absence of any substantial sediments; in fissures in
igneous and metamorphic rocks, even at great depth; in active volcanic
regions, even where there is a minimum of sediments; and there are
massive amounts of methane hydrates (methane-water ice combinations) in
permafrost and ocean deposits, where it is doubtful that an adequate
quantity and distribution of biological source material is present."
A: Methane belongs to hydrocarbons, but it differs as it can be biogenic
or abiotic from chemical reactions. Methane (and ethane) exists in space
when life does not exist. For hydrates it is said to be mainly biogenic
(see my article in Offshore). Methane is the simplest hydrocarbon,
consisting of a single carbon atom surrounded by four hydrogen atoms. As
such, it is a common occurrence wherever there is carbon & hydrogen.
This is not the case with other complex chains of hydrocarbons.

"(5) The hydrocarbon deposits of a large area often show common chemical
or isotopic features, quite independent of the varied composition or the
geological ages of the formations in which they are found."
A: Of course as oil migrates, its isotopic features are those of the
source-rocks as is well known to petroleum geochemists. Correlations
between source-rocks and oils are very well documented.

"He (Kudryavtsev (1959)) pointed out that oil pools in sedimentary
strata are often related to fractures in the basement directly below."
A: Of course, as most of sedimentary structures are correlated to
basement features. Sediments move mainly as basements move; this is a
function of plate tectonics.

"He stressed that petroleum is present, in large or small quantity, but
in all horizons below any petroleum accumulation, apparently totally
independent of the varied conditions of formation of these horizons.
This statement has since become known as 'Kudryavtsev's Rule.'"
A: This "Kudryatsev's rule" is only known as "keep drilling as long as
there is a possible reservoir which can be fed by a possible
source-rock." But the capacity of the rig (and economics) halts drilling
often before this limit is reached. It is difficult to find reference to
this rule anywhere.

"Columns of flames have been seen during the eruptions of some
volcanoes, sometimes reaching 500 meters in height, such as during the
eruption of Merapi in Sumatra in 1932. (We since know of several other
instances.) The eruptions of mud-volcanoes have liberated such
quantities of methane, that even the most prolific gas field underneath
should have been exhausted long ago."
A: It is illogical to mix real volcanoes coming from the mantle and
mud-volcanoes coming from overpressures in sediments as in Bakou area.
Methane (not complex hydrocarbons) is present in the mantle.

"Profir'ev (1974) argued that so-called source rocks have no
identification that proves their hydrocarbons to be primarily biogenic."
A: This reference is terribly outdated. There is now a thousand times
more proof for biogenic than for abiogenic origins.

"He [Hubbert] also discounted the hypothesis, often advanced, that the
transport and deposition of oil from supposed source rocks to the final
reservoir was accomplished by solution in gas..."
A: Most oil is transported with water from the source-rock to the
reservoir: this is why in the reservoir there is oil over water with
generally a water-oil contact being horizontal except when there is a
strong dynamic aquifer causing a tilting (such as King Hubbert was the
first to mention). Hubbert was better known in exploration for his
hydrodynamic theory than for his peak.

"There were several voices also outside Russia (or the Soviet Union),
who argued for a nonbiogenic origin. Most notable among them was Sir
Robert Robinson (1963, 1966) who, like Mendeleev, can be considered
among the most distinguished chemists of his day. He studied the
chemical make-up of natural petroleums in great detail, and concluded
that they were mostly far too hydrogen-rich to be a likely product of
the decay of plant debris. Olefins, the unsaturated hydrocarbons, would
have been expected to predominate by far in any material that was
derived in that way."
A: Geologists have tried to study geochemistry as much as they can
before saying anything on the origin of oil; geochemists such as
Robinson should have studied geology before making statements on the
origin of oil. Conclusions should come from a team of geochemists and
geologists and not from one side.

"Diamonds are known to have high-pressure inclusions that contain CH4
and heavier hydrocarbons, ... it must therefore have been a hydrocarbon
that laid down the diamonds."
A: How much heavier? Up to 4 or 7; this is not enough to speak of
complex hydrocarbons. Furthermore, if these hydrocarbons are as rare as
diamonds, it is difficult to hope for any field coming from them.

"It has been argued that hydrocarbons could not come from these deep
levels, because they could not survive at temperatures that are reached
in the crust at a depth below 20 kilometers (Hunt, 1975); but these
discussions in the petroleum literature have not included the effects of
A: The graph used to back this assertion gives the stability of
hydrocarbons (paraffins & aromatics) below 30 km down to 300 km (100 000
bars and 2000°C) but it does not show it at 10 km. What is the use of
showing hydrocarbons to be stable at 30 km if they are not stable at 10
km? Furthermore, there are huge amounts of gas in the over-pressured
brines of the Gulf of Mexico and the experimental production was a
failure. It is not necessary to go so deep to find unconventional

"Everyone now thinks of Arabia, the Persian Gulf, Iran and Iraq as being
the oil region of the world. There is no feature that the geology or the
topography of this entire large region has in common, and that would
give any hint why it would all be oil and gas rich."
A: it is obvious from such a statement that Thomas Gold, an astronomer,
does not know anything about geochemistry and oil exploration.
The source-rocks of the Arabo-Iranian Mega-Petroleum System (Laherrère
J.H., Perrodon A., Demaison G. 1994 "Undiscovered Petroleum Potential"
Petroconsultants report -383p - March) are described as follows:
All these source-rocks are almost entirely characterized by type II
Kerogen, with often more than 10% TOC and high SPI: 14 t HC/m3 for the
Hanifa-Nadrya Upper Jurassic sourcerocks of Saudi Arabia (Demaison and
Huizinga 1991). Other Cretaceous source-rocks are of comparable quality.
These organic-rich sediments spread over large surfaces, more than 400
km2 for Jurassic formations, and are within the oil window over much of
the region. So the amount of hydrocarbons generated is around 5.6 Ttoe =
40 Tboe.

"Yet it is a striking fact that the detailed chemistry of these oils is
similar over the whole of this large region (Kent and Warman, 1972)."
A: Of course the chemistry is similar; these oils are from the same

"The island arc of Indonesia, of which Java and Sumatra are the main
components, belongs to a much larger pattern of an arc. Along the whole
of this arc petroleum is very abundant."
A: Correlation is not causality. Furthermore it is illogical to show
only the oilfields on the arc while omitting the oilfields outside the
arc (Kalimantan, for example). As was said above, rapid sedimentation
occurs within an arc and oil deposits occur in rapid sedimentation (as
in the Gulf of Mexico).

"Yet it has been said by the Russian investigators (Makogan, 1988) that,
so far as they could see, in every location on the ocean floor and in
the permafrost of the North where the temperature-pressure situation
would make methane hydrates stable, they are found."
A: Out of the several thousands boreholes cored at more than 1000 sites
of the JOIDES-ODP (Joint Oceanographic Institutions for Deep Earth
Sampling-Ocean Drilling Program), only a few cores have recovered more
than one foot of hydrates. Many sites with the Bottom Simulating
Reflector (BSR) did not find any hydrates, and hydrates were found at
sites without BSR. (Laherrère 19991)

"The helium concentration in a gas is then mainly an indication of the
depth from which this gas has come."
A: It must be proved first that the gas contains this helium since the
beginning, and that the helium is not coming from a different source.

"Yet if helium could flow without a carrier gas, there should be many
locations where amounts of helium had accumulated that were similar to
the amounts of helium in some gas fields, but now, in the absence of
methane or nitrogen, they would be pure helium fields. Such fields would
have been discovered, and would be very valuable. Their absence thus
certifies the carrier gas concept for helium transport."
A: Pure helium fields should have been found only if they were searched
for. Drilling is done looking for hydrocarbons and not for helium, as
there is not lead or approach to such deposits.

"During the episodes of the Krakatoa eruption below the sea surface, a
large region of flames above the water were observed, in this case of
course in the complete absence of any confusing sprays of lava. But even
at quiet times some volcanoes emit enough combustible gases to burn
above the lava lake. There are strong indications that small amounts of
gases coming out of volcanoes at quiet times are largely oxidized, while
in violent eruptions the unoxidized gases--hydrogen and methane--are
A: Most volcanic gases are water, and at high pressure water dissolves
large quantities of methane (see Bingham's solubility curve (Laherrère
1999); at 6000 m water depth, water dissolves 150 times more methane
than at surface-hydrates contain 150 times the volume of methane
compared to the volume of hydrates). It is obvious that volcanoes occur
at tectonic subduction zones, and the waters come from the sediments
where methane is present everywhere. Deep waters can contain a lot of
methane and volcanoes discharge these waters and methane coming from
sediments or the mantle. So much for the flares in real volcanoes (also
in mud volcanoes!).

"Results in Sweden It is with this consideration in mind that I
persuaded the Swedish Government to study the region of a giant
meteoritic impact crater, the "Siljan Ring" in Central Sweden. An impact
that left a circular formation 44 kilometers in diameter would
undoubtedly have fractured the rock to great depth, and one might
therefore have expected this to be a particularly favorable location for
finding upwelling hydrocarbons. It was quickly ascertained that just the
area of the Siljan structure was quite anomalously rich in soil methane
and other light hydrocarbons, that many ordinary water wells produced
copious amounts of gas and that a number of stone quarries in the area
had oil seeping out of the rocks and making oil pools in the ground. It
is true that the stone quarries were in the sedimentary rock which fills
a ring shaped depression, but those sediments are nowhere deeper than
300 meters. Oil seepage generated after 360 million years from such a
small quantity of sediments seemed improbable."
A: The age of the source-rock is not the age of generation. The two
wells recovered 80 barrels, which is a very small proportion of the
seepage known for centuries on surface. So the origin of the oil from
these sediments should not been excluded as it was by Gold.

"Some biological molecules, steranes, were found to be from the same set
and in closely similar ratios as had been seen in the surface seepage
oils... and this strengthened the case that the two oils had a common
A: Of course they come from the same source rocks: they should have been
compared to the sedimentary source rock which is known to be the source
of the seepages. Oils migrate with waters to any porosity, either in a
sedimentary rock or in a fractured basement.

Can There Be Two Independent Sources of Commercial Hydrocarbon Deposits,
One Derived from Biological Materials, the Other from Primordial Carbon
and Hydrogen, Incorporated into the Earth at its Formation? Thomas Gold,
November 1996
"For the second, the primordial origin of commercial hydrocarbons, we
have the comparison with the abundance of similar hydrocarbons on many
other planetary bodies, also in interplanetary grains, in comets, and
also in the interstellar gas clouds thought to be similar to the cloud
that formed the solar system. We also see abundance of methane in the
volcanic ocean vents where there are no substantial biological sediments."
A: Methane does not represent all hydrocarbons; it can come from simple
chemical reaction. Its solubility with water increases drastically with

"Nickel and vanadium porphyrins are found in varying proportions, but in
all petroleum deposits. An explanation that on every occasion in all
oils the original metal atoms had been exchanged for just nickel and
vanadium from the rocks in their surroundings, seems extremely improbable."
A: Why not-as oil moves with waters coming from everywhere, waters from
sediments and from the mantle.

"The overall hydrocarbon composition corresponds to the equilibrium
state at temperatures 1,300 to 1,500 °C and pressures of 20 to 40 kb.
The estimate is that this is the condition in the upper mantle at depths
of 60 to 160 km. (This information comes primarily from the publications
of two chemists and thermodynamicists from the Ukraine, G.E. Boiko and
E.B. Chekaliuk, over the years from 1950 to 1982, I have found no other
reference to these in the U.S., British, German or French literature).
A: No more reference after 1982 in Russian papers, and none in the rest
of the world, may mean that it is considered wrong.

On the Association of Petroleum with Helium and with Biological Molecules
Thomas Gold July
1992 http://people.cornell.edu/pages/tg21/assoc.html
"The only circumstance I could see that would account for the
hydrocarbon-helium association, was that the hydrocarbons have ascended
from deep levels far below any sediments, from materials similar to
those of carbonaceous chondrite meteorites, which were a major component
of the materials that formed the Earth"
A: Why not the simplest explanation: that the helium comes from a
different origin. Gold has forgotten about Occam's Razor.

Eye-witness Accounts of Several Major Earthquakes Thomas Gold 1987
Earthquakes disturb soil which contains gas (as marsh gas) and most of
the gas reports during earthquakes do not bring much. As for prediction,
I read about a radon study not mentioned by Gold.

The Deep, Hot Biosphere Thomas Gold July 1992
"The large quantities of methane hydrates (methane-water ices) found in
many areas of the ocean floor, and thought to contain more methane than
all other known methane deposits (5,6), suggest a widely distributed
methane supply from below."
A: This is based on comparing the amount of carbon in the dispersed
methane in the oceanic sediments with unreliable high concentration (in
fact about 1% of the porosity for the last survey in the Blake Ridge) to
the recoverable fossil reserves (for oil & gas less than 1% of the
generated hydrocarbons). The comparison with the amount of carbon in
fossil fuel is completely different. It is not Gold's fault: he just
repeats incorrect statements.

"While drilling to a depth of 6.7 kilometers in an ancient meteorite
impact crater called the "Siljan Ring", and the oil was largely a
simple, light, hydrogen saturated petroleum, completely different from
plant oils."
A: In a paper above, Gold said that this oil is similar to the oil
seepage, which has been known for centuries, coming from a sedimentary
"It may be that we shall find a simple general rule to apply: that
microbial life exists in all the locations where microbes can survive..."
A: No objection.

Metal Ores and Hydrocarbons Thomas Gold June 1994
"Which fluids have the capability to take into solution such substances
as heavy metals or metal compounds? At high pressures and temperatures
many metals will form organometallics, that means molecules that combine
metal atoms with such elements as carbon and hydrogen, possibly with
some nitrogen and oxygen also. Most organometallic compounds are soluble
in hydrocarbon oils. Such oils, being forced through the rocks, will
have a chance to combine with metals in the rocks to make organometallic
compounds. In turn those that are soluble in the oils can then be
transported by that same flow. This will be so also for many metals that
have very low solubilities in aqueous liquids. What process can be so
selective that it will deposit one metal ore in one location and another
often nearby? What liquid stream will just leach out copper from the
rocks, while another nearby stream will leach out zinc? Or why platinum
here and gold there? The hydrocarbon flow."
A: Good point. But if it is so, metal deposits should be found only in
places where there were hydrocarbons, and this is not the case.

"In the drilling in the Siljan Ring structure in Sweden, large
quantities of magnetite were found. Some twelve tons of a mix of very
fine grained magnetite and natural petroleum were pumped up from one
A: It is reported that only 80 barrels of oil were recovered and that
"oil-based drilling fluid had been in use for several months."
1 Oceanic Hydrates, an Elusive Resource, Laherrère, Jean. Offshore,
August 1999 and September 1999. "The Deep Sea Drilling Program (DSDP),
which was extended in 1985 as the Ocean Drilling Program (ODP),
stimulated an interest in hydrates. Russian research suggested that they
could occur at a depth of a few hundred meters below the seabed in deep
water areas. Geophysicists simultaneously identified what was known as
the Bottom Simulating Reflector (BSR) on deepwater seismic surveys
(Markl 1970, Shipley 1979). It was soon assumed that the BSR marked the
occurrence of hydrates, trapping freegas below, and several Joides sites
were designed to investigate them. These sites were planned by
universities not oilmen, although the latter were called in to advise on
safety on the PPSP panel (I was one of them during the first half of the
80s). A total of 625 sites were drilled by the Glomar Challenger between
1963 and 1983 under the auspices of the DSDP, (see Figure 1), but it was
ruled not to drill through the BSR to avoid any blow out."