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Orwellingly Yurz
SFN Regular

USA
529 Posts

Posted - 01/08/2007 :  19:27:41  Show Profile Send Orwellingly Yurz a Private Message
YO: http://blog.citizensforethics.org/node/478

When you click on the link above you'll see a picture of two men.
The dummy on the left is Jack Abramoff..........the dummy on the
RIGHT, you already know.

OY...HO..HO.

"The modern conservative...is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy. That is the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness."
--John Kenneth Galbraith

If dogs run free
Then what must be,
Must be...
And that is all
--Bob Dylan

The neo-cons have gotten welfare for themselves down to a fine art.
--me

"The meek shall inherit the earth, but not the mineral rights."
--J. Paul Getty

"The great thing about Art isn't what it give us, but what we become through it."
--Oscar Wilde

"We have Art in order not to die of life."
--Albert Camus

"I cling like a miser to the freedom I lose when surrounded by an abundance of things."
--Albert Camus

"Experience is the name so many people give to their mistakes."
--Oscar Wilde

Original_Intent
SFN Regular

USA
609 Posts

Posted - 01/08/2007 :  21:33:22   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Original_Intent a Private Message
I hate seeing pictures like this, not because they may well be true, but because a picture like this is really easy to dupe. It isn't of a quality to even lend itself at speculation of it origins.

Peace
joe
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JohnOAS
SFN Regular

Australia
800 Posts

Posted - 01/08/2007 :  22:11:56   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit JohnOAS's Homepage Send JohnOAS a Private Message
I can't comment on the authenticity of the photo, or any of the politics for that matter, but the logic in the text accompanying the photo is pretty poor, even for a journalist.

quote:
The White House did not want anyone to see this photo. So, that begs the question: What else are they hiding?


Pretty solid stuff.

John's just this guy, you know.
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Dude
SFN Die Hard

USA
6891 Posts

Posted - 01/09/2007 :  01:13:18   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Dude a Private Message
There were other pictures, in the news, showing Bush and Jack.


Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"god :: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument." - G. Carlin

Hope, n.
The handmaiden of desperation; the opiate of despair; the illegible signpost on the road to perdition. ~~ da filth
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 01/09/2007 :  05:33:02   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
I don't know about the photo, it won't load right now, but I know about the politics. The White House claimed Abramoff was there a couple of times but after a freedom of information request investigators found Abramoff had been to the White House over 400 times.

Monday, October 2nd, 2006
"A Swashbuckling Spectacle of Corruption" - Bill Moyers Investigates Abramoff Lobbying Scandal
quote:
Investigators found that between January 2001 and March 2004, Abramoff and his associates had more than 400 contacts with White House officials.
Edited by - beskeptigal on 01/09/2007 05:37:45
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Mycroft
Skeptic Friend

USA
427 Posts

Posted - 01/10/2007 :  10:50:59   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Mycroft a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Original_Intent

I hate seeing pictures like this, not because they may well be true, but because a picture like this is really easy to dupe. It isn't of a quality to even lend itself at speculation of it origins.

Peace
joe



Well, the real issue is if it's true, what of it?

Jack Abramoff was a powerful Washington lobbyist. It's expected there will be pictures of him with the most powerful political figures. While Jack Abramoff was guilty of corruption and convicted of crimes, this doesn't automatically taint everyone who ever met him unless they are also convicted of crimes.

If Bush has claimed never to have met him, then this photo is still of little importance. He still has the out of claiming the meeting was of so little importance that it wasn't remembered and as a lame-duck, it won't matter come election time anyway.

Now on a personal level, I would find it satisfying if there were a lot of shaking heads and wagging fingers of people saying, ”it's an issue of character” as was done with Clinton and his tortured stretching of the truth under oath, but that's all it would be is for personal satisfaction. Still little or no importance in the world at large.
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Orwellingly Yurz
SFN Regular

USA
529 Posts

Posted - 01/10/2007 :  11:33:12   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Orwellingly Yurz a Private Message
YO! When Monica did Bill, Hillary was hurt, and I feel her pain. When George War Bush supped and, God knows what else, with Jack, many people were and are, probably, still hurting. Do some research on Mr. Abramoff and the stuff he's been tied to.

But save yourself some time, Mycroft and just look not at Jack's, but George's list of stuff perpetrated. For me, THAT's overwhelmingly significant.

Just watch your television tonight at nine---eastern.

OY!

"The modern conservative...is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy. That is the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness."
--John Kenneth Galbraith

If dogs run free
Then what must be,
Must be...
And that is all
--Bob Dylan

The neo-cons have gotten welfare for themselves down to a fine art.
--me

"The meek shall inherit the earth, but not the mineral rights."
--J. Paul Getty

"The great thing about Art isn't what it give us, but what we become through it."
--Oscar Wilde

"We have Art in order not to die of life."
--Albert Camus

"I cling like a miser to the freedom I lose when surrounded by an abundance of things."
--Albert Camus

"Experience is the name so many people give to their mistakes."
--Oscar Wilde
Edited by - Orwellingly Yurz on 01/10/2007 11:34:20
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 01/10/2007 :  18:23:50   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
Mycroft, you love your little corner of denial, don't you. Abramoff didn't have a legitimate lobbying business and NONE of his work was legit. You really need to read more.


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Boron10
Religion Moderator

USA
1259 Posts

Posted - 01/11/2007 :  08:07:55   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Boron10 a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal:
Mycroft, you love your little corner of denial, don't you. Abramoff didn't have a legitimate lobbying business and NONE of his work was legit. You really need to read more.
I don't see Mycroft stating (or even implying) that Abramoff had a legitimate lobbying business. He only pointed out that a known lobbyist would have at least one opportunity for a presidential photo-op.

The implication that President Bush was involved with some kind of scandal based solely on a single photograph with a criminal is ridiculous. Last time I checked, we were not conspiracy theorists.
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Boron10
Religion Moderator

USA
1259 Posts

Posted - 01/11/2007 :  08:51:00   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Boron10 a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal:
I don't know about the photo, it won't load right now, but I know about the politics. The White House claimed Abramoff was there a couple of times but after a freedom of information request investigators found Abramoff had been to the White House over 400 times.

Monday, October 2nd, 2006
"A Swashbuckling Spectacle of Corruption" - Bill Moyers Investigates Abramoff Lobbying Scandal
quote:
Investigators found that between January 2001 and March 2004, Abramoff and his associates had more than 400 contacts with White House officials.

I am sure you realize how vague this wording is. I have had contact with some Pentagon officials; but if you ask the Pentagon, they'd probably say "no" (or perhaps "maybe") because my business is not important to them.

My point is, it is quite likely that "Abramoff and his associates had more than 400 contacts with White House officials," and "Abramoff was there a couple of times." Unfortunately, the first statement seems intentionally vague. If a White House assistant to an aide goes out to lunch with a secretary from Abramoff's office, it meets the requirement.

Mountains and molehills, here.
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Mycroft
Skeptic Friend

USA
427 Posts

Posted - 01/11/2007 :  20:47:16   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Mycroft a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Boron10

quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal:
Mycroft, you love your little corner of denial, don't you. Abramoff didn't have a legitimate lobbying business and NONE of his work was legit. You really need to read more.
I don't see Mycroft stating (or even implying) that Abramoff had a legitimate lobbying business. He only pointed out that a known lobbyist would have at least one opportunity for a presidential photo-op.

The implication that President Bush was involved with some kind of scandal based solely on a single photograph with a criminal is ridiculous. Last time I checked, we were not conspiracy theorists.



Exactly!

The photograph on its own is nothing. I personally could be photographed with a mafia boss, but that doesn't make me a gangster.


Beskeptigal,

I dislike Bush too, but my wistful thinking doesn't turn this photograph into evidence of any crime. It's not, and wishing doesn't change anything. If Bush is guilty of underhanded dealings with Abramoff, then we will still need real evidence to expose it and act.

It's simply not possible for everything Abramoff to have done to be a crime. While anyone who follows the news certainly knows he was into a lot of sleazy things, it still doesn't follow that everything he did was illegal. Shaking hands, for example, is legal no matter whos hand you shake. So is getting your photograph taken.
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 01/11/2007 :  21:54:01   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
Now why would you think the photo was all the evidence I was going by? Have I not talked about the corruption in the Bush admin and the Republican Party enough to suggest I have at least read something on these crimes besides looking at a photo?

The list is endless but here's a start:

Rolling Stone; Jan 06, 2006; The Abramoff/Bush Connection

Abramoff Associates, Bush Aides Met Often; Associated Press; September 21, 2006

Tyco Exec: Abramoff Claimed Ties to Administration; By R. Jeffrey Smith; Washington Post Staff Writer; September 23, 2005

Published on Thursday, November 10, 2005 by the New York Times; Lobbyist Sought $9 Million to Set Bush Meeting; by Philip Shenon

quote:
The lobbyist Jack Abramoff asked for $9 million in 2003 from the president of a West African nation to arrange a meeting with President Bush and directed his fees to a Maryland company now under federal scrutiny, according to newly disclosed documents.

The African leader, President Omar Bongo of Gabon, met with President Bush in the Oval Office on May 26, 2004, 10 months after Mr. Abramoff made the offer. There has been no evidence in the public record that Mr. Abramoff had any role in organizing the meeting or that he received any money or had a signed contract with Gabon. ...

...The documents also show that Mr. Abramoff and his colleagues drew up a draft contract that called for $9 million in fees to be paid to GrassRoots Interactive, the small Maryland lobbying company that his former colleagues say he controlled.

Documents, including copies of canceled checks, show that millions of dollars flowed through the company's accounts in 2003, the year it was created, including at least $2.3 million to a California consulting firm that used the same address as the law office of Mr. Abramoff's brother, Robert. A separate check for $400,000 was made out to Kay Gold, another Abramoff family company.

Mr. Abramoff, a Republican fund-raiser who once was one of the most powerful lobbyists in Washington, has been indicted in Florida on federal fraud charges. He is also under investigation by a federal grand jury in Washington and two Senate committees.

The grand jury inquiry initially centered on accusations that Mr. Abramoff had defrauded a group of Indian tribes out of tens of millions of dollars in lobbying fees connected to their gambling operations, including steep fees for work that was never performed.

But federal law enforcement officials say that inquiry has broadened, with prosecutors examining other issues, including Mr. Abramoff's relationship with GrassRoots and other small consulting firms and charities he controlled. Congressional investigators have questioned whether he used them to hide income to avoid paying taxes and to evade disclosure rules for lobbyists. Federal law requires lobbyists for foreign governments to register with the Justice Department.

A spokesman for Mr. Abramoff had no comment on GrassRoots or the lobbyist's contacts with President Bongo. Robert Abramoff did not return repeated phone calls. GrassRoots has no listed telephone number in Silver Spring, Md., where it had been based.



So, Bush meets with a leader and claims it was normal business. But the files show Abramoff offered to set the meeting up for a bribe. And the record shows money changed hands.



Edited by - beskeptigal on 01/11/2007 21:56:26
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Boron10
Religion Moderator

USA
1259 Posts

Posted - 01/12/2007 :  09:31:00   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Boron10 a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal:
Now why would you think the photo was all the evidence I was going by? Have I not talked about the corruption in the Bush admin and the Republican Party enough to suggest I have at least read something on these crimes besides looking at a photo?
Fair enough. I concede the point; you have more evidence than just that picture.
quote:
The list is endless but here's a start:
.
.
.
Most of these point to connections between the staffs of each; most of them are at pretty low positions in the totem pole. Here's a hypothetical example: you have a high school friend who is now an assistant to a secretary for a politician. You occasionally have lunch with this friend. Does that mean the politician now has ties to the health profession? Would that be even remotely fair to claim?
quote:
So, Bush meets with a leader and claims it was normal business. But the files show Abramoff offered to set the meeting up for a bribe. And the record shows money changed hands.
But there's no mention of the money coming from out of the country, or any reference to the origin of the money. Just speculation. Another hypothetical situation: I offer you money to meet this politician your industry has connections with. Eventually (months down the line) I get to meet the politician. In the interim, your brother's business made some money. Is it fair to condemn the politician for that series of coincidences?
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Mycroft
Skeptic Friend

USA
427 Posts

Posted - 01/12/2007 :  21:58:16   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Mycroft a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
Now why would you think the photo was all the evidence I was going by?


Uhm, because the topic of the thread is the photo, and you were responding directly to my comments which were only about the photo and not about other speculative connections between Bush and Abramoff.

Of course you are perfectly free to change the topic by expanding it to cover all these articles that speculate on possible Bush/Abramoff connections (which you have done) but it makes no logical sense to then retroactively claim your comments on my previous post included them somehow. That would be revisionist.

Now, I'm not going to read all your links. I'll assume you quoted the best that they offer, so I'll just respond to that.

”Jack Abramoff asked for $9 million in 2003 from the president of a West African nation to arrange a meeting with President Bush...”

That's one fact. Okay…

”The African leader, President Omar Bongo of Gabon, met with President Bush in the Oval Office on May 26, 2004...”

And that's another fact.

The question is; are these facts related? Clearly the author wants to imply that they are, but if we are to accuse someone of a crime, especially the President of the United States, we need a lot more than just speculation and innuendo. We need evidence, and it's not here.

The President of Gabon wanted to meet with the President of the United States. Ten months later he did. Was Abramoff involved? Maybe. Or maybe the President of Gabon found another way to get what he wanted.

Hey, I want a liquor license so I can open a tavern. My attorney offers to get me one from the City Council for $30,000. Ten months later, I have a liquor license and I'm opening my tavern. In the meantime I've had my attorney handle many things for me, incurring well more than $30,000 in fees.

Did I get my liquor license on my own through normal channels, or did my attorney do it for me? Well, from the facts listed above, you can't tell. Maybe my attorney did it, maybe I applied for it myself and got it.

An even better question; if my attorney got it for me, was there anything illegal done? It is, after all, my attorney's job to help me in my business and to guide me through these legal necessities. If he knows how to expedite the process, maybe his service is worth the $30,000?

Now it's reasonable to assume that if the President of a foreign government wants to meet the President of the United States, that there are channels (probably through the State Department) he can take to request such a meeting. If getting a meeting requires more than that, then he's free to ask (or influence) anyone he wants to convince the POTUS to see him.

Further, I have to raise the question if Abramoff did arrange the meeting, is that illegal? I don't know the answer to that. As far as I know it's perfectly legal for foreign governments to hire lobbyists, and the job of a lobbyist is to influence government officials to see their clients point of view. Could that include convincing someone on Bush's staff to expedite a meeting? I don't know.

The bottom line is your article is speculation and little more. It's a reporter playing “six steps to Kevin Bacon” in an effort to smear Bush with Abramoff's guilt. As a skeptic, you should pay less attention to what you want to be true, and more attention to what evidence proves is true.
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 01/14/2007 :  02:14:36   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
No, Mycroft the bottom line is there is overwhelming evidence most if not all of Abramoffs dealings involved bribes and personal gain. There is overwhelming evidence the whole crowd of Bush cronies are involved in bilking the taxpayers out of billions in no-bid contracts and legislation quid pro quo for payoffs of all kinds. These guys have invented new ways to steal your money.

I seem to recall you saying you weren't a Bush supporter or a Republican. Does that make you a Libertarian? And you have turned a blind eye to the billions of dollars flooding out of government coffers into crony owned companies? It has nothing to do with speculation. It has to do with reading volumes of material over the last 6 years.

I merely posted a sampling and it was hardly the "best evidence" out there. Look up Saipan and Abramoff and DeLay and see what you find.

Edited by - beskeptigal on 01/14/2007 02:16:46
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 01/14/2007 :  02:24:17   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
Try a little reading Mycroft, it really is billions with a B of our tax dollars Bush has drained out of the General Fund into the hands of cronies and relatives.

http://www.democracynow.org/article.pl?sid=06/10/02/1321259
http://www.pbs.org/moyers/moyersonamerica/capitol/index.html
http://www.truthout.org/cgi-bin/artman/exec/view.cgi/47/17961
http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/040806G.shtml
http://www.truthout.org/cgi-bin/artman/exec/view.cgi/47/16731
http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2005-05-06-abramoff-bush_x.htm
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/02/09/AR2006020902118.html


Edited by - beskeptigal on 01/14/2007 02:28:42
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