Friday, March 28, 2014

Last Call For Rep. Mike Rogers

Michigan GOP Rep. Mike Rogers, head of the powerful House Intelligence Committee, is retiring.  But don't cry for him, he's heading for the wingnut talk radio circuit where the real money is.

“There is a whole celebrity political class in Washington, D.C., today that I think is doing a huge disservice to the functionality of our national security — who are using it to foment their isolationalist tendencies — and I think it is dangerous, really dangerous,” said Rogers, also criticizing some Republicans for “talking just like Obama’s foreign policy.”

He’s been a lonely voice, he says, for rational debate about what U.S. intelligence agencies do to protect the country.

“I don’t think I can change that dialogue unless I have a national platform,” he said

He downplayed his importance in Congress, saying a citizen legislature required new blood.

“Everybody knows their time. This institution is going to be fine — maybe even better off — who knows,” he joked.

He said he will become a radio talk show host for after his term ends in December — returning to a college passion. He plans to have former intelligence officials and ex-spies on his show but will also be talking about topics across the political spectrum.

“I did one radio show when I was in college that was a disaster — let’s give it a whirl — maybe I’ve gotten better at it,” he joked.

Rogers’ new radio show will air nationally starting in January as a syndicated host at Cumulus Radio.

“It gives me a chance to talk to people in their cars, in their living rooms, in their kitchens about these issues — about American exceptionalism, about national security,” he said.

 Cumulus owns hundreds of radio stations across the country, so his show will get national airplay.  It won't be the last you hear of this guy, that's for sure.

Governor Skeletor Collects The Loot

Why shouldn't Gov. Rick Scott use corporate lobbyist cash to fund his trips when the GOP has total control of the government in Florida and can write laws to make it legal?

Months before Florida Crystals Corp. won a no-bid contract to farm sugar on state-owned land, its top lobbyist and president met with Governor Rick Scott in the home of King Juan Carlos of Spain.

They got access during a 2012 trade mission underwritten by corporations including the company, which is co-owner of the Domino Sugar brand. The trip, intended to recruit businesses to Florida, also provided a lobbying opportunity for those already in the state. After the meeting at the palace, Florida Crystals executives joined Scott at a reception they sponsored, featuring Spanish omelets and dry-cured ham.

Governors increasingly are using corporate money to fund their excursions, often from businesses that stand to benefit from state decisions. While taxpayers traditionally paid for trade missions, at least 15 states have started collecting donations to cover costs, including six since 2010. Scott, a 61-year-old Republican, has tapped the private money most often, making 10 overseas visits in the past three years, twice the pace of his predecessor, according to public records.

“It’s an opportunity that the vast majority of people and companies never get,” said Hayden Dempsey, a Tallahassee lobbyist and former aide to the governor who went on the Spain trip. Scott, he said, was “very accessible.”

In the months after, Scott approved a 30-year lease extension that Florida Crystals sought on 8,700 acres of state land. He also signed a bill helping the company limit payments to clean up pollution near its South Florida farms.

That's how government works. Lobbyists buy the government with trips and loot and get the laws they need to make tons of profit at taxpayer expense, and they even get to destroy the environment free of charge. And all of this is 100% legal, because the laws are written to make it this way.  Free speech baby, free speech.

So what if regular Floridians get exploited and harmed?  Who cares?  They don't have the corporate billions.  If their rights meant anything, God would have made them rich enough to afford free speech.

It's the GOP way.

Someone Please Show Condi Rice The Door

Because her failures as National Security Adviser and as Secretary of State got us and kept us in two ridiculous wars that we'll be paying for in several ways for decades, anything she has to say about foreign policy is automatically void and meaningless.

Speaking before a group of over 2,000 attendees at the National Republican Congressional Committee’s annual dinner in Washington D.C., former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice revived speculation in her future political prospects with a speech in which she took aim at America’s “weary” foreign policy under President Barack Obama.

“Right now, there’s a vacuum,” Rice said, according to a report via The Weekly Standard’s Stephen F. Hayes. “There’s a vacuum because we’ve decided to lower our voice. We’ve decided to step back. We’ve decided that if we step back and lower our voice, others will lead, other things will fill that vacuum.”

Rice sited the ongoing civil war in Syria, the return of Al Qaeda to Iraq, China’s antagonism toward Japan and the Philippines, and Russia’s aggression in Europe as examples of how the post-Cold War order is beginning to fray.

“I fully understand the sense of weariness,” she revealed. “I fully understand that we must think: ‘Us, again?’ I know that we’ve been through two wars. I know that we’ve been vigilant against terrorism.”

“I know that it’s hard,” Rice continued, “but leaders can’t afford to get tired. Leaders can’t afford to be weary.”

And leaders can't afford to lie us into two wars of aggression that killed hundreds of thousands.  But keep telling yourself that running Condi Rice in 2016 is going to somehow work out better than McCain or Romney.

Run the war criminal, Republicans.  Watch what happens.

PS, if four deaths in Benghazi disqualifies Hillary Clinton from the White House, then Condi Rice disqualified herself about a thousand times over again.


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