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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 01/14/2007 :  02:28:27   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
And here are some more about Bush rather than Abramoff

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Bush_administration_cronyism_and_incompetence
http://www.truthout.org/docs_2005/093005K.shtml
http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=10000087&sid=aJzwLcLRZiek&refer=top_world_news
http://www.oldamericancentury.org/bushco/cronyism.htm
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1109345,00.html
http://www.now.org/nnt/winter-2004/administration.html
http://www.slate.com/id/2127493/





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Boron10
Religion Moderator

USA
1266 Posts

Posted - 01/14/2007 :  09:25:20   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Boron10 a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal:
And here are some more about Bush rather than Abramoff
.
.
.
Now how many of those connect President Bush to Mr. Abramoff? That was, I recall, the topic of the thread and the entire reason for the argument.

My only point has been: there are plenty of reasons to be dissatisfied with our president. Why try to invent a connection for which there's flimsy evidence at best?
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Mycroft
Skeptic Friend

USA
427 Posts

Posted - 01/14/2007 :  16:00:32   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Mycroft a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
No, Mycroft the bottom line is there is overwhelming evidence most if not all of Abramoffs dealings involved bribes and personal gain.


That Abramoff is guilty of many wrong-doings is not in dispute.

However, that still doesn't mean any connection to Abramoff, such as a picture, is evidence of a crime.

Can you understand the difference?

quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
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.


That may be true, but that would be a huge expansion of the original topic. Remember; in this thread I have only pointed out that this photograph is not evidence of any wrong-doing. That is not the same as an endorsement of Bush, nor is it a defense of Bush in general.

Understanding these distinctions is basic logic.

quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
I seem to recall you saying you weren't a Bush supporter or a Republican. Does that make you a Libertarian?


I am a liberal Democrat, as I have said many times.

quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
And you have turned a blind eye to the billions of dollars flooding out of government coffers into crony owned companies?


Have I? When? Present evidence to back up this assertion.

What I have done in this thread is to point out that the photograph in the OP is of no evidentiary value. Your problem is that you are so extreme to the left, that you can't tell the difference between that and a full endorsement of Bush and his policies. Apparently, and this is going by the evidence of your posts, you seem to believe that anyone who doesn't jump on every smear of Bush must then be a full supporter of Bush. You don't seem capable of seeing any middle ground.

Let me make this clear: I don't like Bush. I think he is the worst president of my lifetime, and I suspect I am a bit older than you.

However, not liking Bush doesn't make this photograph into evidence of any wrong-doing, so when someone presents it as evidence, as a proper skeptic, I will speak up and say that it's not. We should be encouraging critical thinking, even when it doesn't support our personal politics.

quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
It has nothing to do with speculation. It has to do with reading volumes of material over the last 6 years.


Okay, fine. You have read many bad things about Bush. Does that turn this photograph into evidence? No.

quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
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.


The corrup
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Mycroft
Skeptic Friend

USA
427 Posts

Posted - 01/14/2007 :  16:06:26   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Mycroft a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Boron10
My only point has been: there are plenty of reasons to be dissatisfied with our president. Why try to invent a connection for which there's flimsy evidence at best?



Exactly!

There are so many really good reasons to be dissatisfied with Bush, I think the left really hurts itself when they pull out this nonsense.
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 01/16/2007 :  05:06:28   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
That's right, flimsy evidence. I didn't really post any citations. All there is is the photo.

You guys are in denial.
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Boron10
Religion Moderator

USA
1266 Posts

Posted - 01/16/2007 :  20:36:46   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Boron10 a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal:
That's right, flimsy evidence. I didn't really post any citations. All there is is the photo.

You guys are in denial.
Interesting. Did somebody claim you didn't post citations, or are you attempting to use inflammatory rhetoric?

I do recall, however, conceding the point that "you have more evidence than just that picture." I just think your evidence is "flimsy...at best." I had assumed my explanations were sufficient. Is there something I can help you understand?
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 01/17/2007 :  02:08:56   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
Yes, Boron. Explain to me how you've read Moly Ivans, Bob Woodward, Amy Goodman, Bill Moyer, Richard Clark, John O'Neal, followed the Abramoff stuff since 2001 when I first found out about his dealings in Saipan, followed Bush's follies and cronyism since 1999 when the long national nightmare began and still think Bush was somehow not involved with Abramoff.

What would you like to see, an indictment? Don't hold your breath. It still doesn't mean Bush didn't trade favors for campaign funds and who knows what else, with full knowledge Abramoff and Delay were lining their pockets. You are talking about the unified Republican Party here. Abramoff had direct dealings with the White House over 400 times according to their documents. You think Bush really didn't know who DeLay's best buddy was?

If you look at nothing else, look at Bill Moyers investigative report on Abramoff. Moyers leaves no doubt the White House was involved.

BTW, are you aware of the Saipan sweatshops DeLay kept the Congress from addressing? Women from China, told they were going to get jobs in the USA, end up in Saipan, unable to return, forced labor, forced prostitution, forced abortions, and the clothes they make have "made in the USA" labels. The Saipan sweatshop owners paid millions to DeLay and to Abramoff, and DeLay prevented the Bill from ever getting to the Floor of Congress for a vote which would have helped those women.

CNN finally reported on it in 2005
quote:
Moved by the sworn testimony of U.S. officials and human-rights advocates that the 91 percent of the workforce who were immigrants -- from China, the Philippines, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh -- were being paid barely half the U.S. minimum hourly wage and were forced to live behind barbed wire in squalid shacks minus plumbing, work 12 hours a day, often seven days a week, without any of the legal protections U.S. workers are guaranteed, Murkowski wrote a bill to extend the protection of U.S. labor and minimum-wage laws to the workers in the U.S. territory of the Northern Marianas.

So compelling was the case for change the Alaska Republican marshaled that in early 2000, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed the Murkowski worker reform bill.

But one man primarily stopped the U.S. House from even considering that worker-reform bill: then-House Republican Whip Tom DeLay.



Here's a list of sources on the disgusting affair.
quote:
Chapter 10 — The Tom DeLay Saipan Sex Tour and Jack Abramoff Casino Getaway

You can relive the original Battle of Saipan by watching a 1944 newsreel about it at www.archive.org/details/1944-06-30_Saipan_Is_Ours.

Brian Ross's first report on Saipan appeared on 20/20 on March 13, 1998. His second report appeared on 20/20 on May 24, 1999.

Marshall Wittman was quoted in a New York Times magazine article on Jack Abramoff, titled “A Lobbyist in Full,” published May 1, 2005.

The Washington Post article about Tom DeLay's Judeo-Christian worldview was titled “Absolute Truth,” and ran on May 13, 2001. This article also referenced the peculiar political philosophy (“beat him over the head with a baseball bat”) of Michael Scanlon.

DeLay's adoring toast to Jack Abramoff was reported by James Harding for Slate on April 7, 2005.

The Senate Indian Affairs Committee, as I mentioned, has posted some of the e-mail correspondence between Abramoff, Scanlon, and Ralph Reed on its website. It's worth reading through at indian.senate.gov/exhibitspart1.pdf and indian.senate.gov/exhibitspart2.pdf.

Timothy Noah wrote about Jack Abramoff's early days, including his “Abraham Jackoff” moniker, in a piece titled “Jack Abramoff's School Days — The Making of a Sleazeball,” published in Slate on April 27, 2005.

Michael Isikoff's Newsweek article about the Tom DeLay-Jack Abramoff relationship wasntitled “With Friends Like TheseÖ” and ran on April 18, 2005.

The New York Times reported on the plight of the Tigua tribe in a June 13, 2005 article titled “For a Tribe in Texas , an Era of Prosperity Undone by Politics.”

The story of David Grosh was detailed in a June 23, 2005 Washington Post article titled “One Committee's Three Hours of Inquiry, in Surreal Time.”

The Galveston Daily News article on DeLay's denial, published May 15, 2005 , was titled “DeLay Disputes Charges of Abuse in Saipan.”

The National Journal article about Peter Hoekstra, “Former House Staffers Say DeLay's Office Derailed Northern Marianas Investigation,” ran on May 6, 2005.




Edited by - beskeptigal on 01/17/2007 02:09:59
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 01/17/2007 :  02:15:30   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
Since it's doubtful you actually checked out any of the evidence, here's a spoonful.
quote:
Controversial lobbyist had close contact with Bush team
WASHINGTON (AP) — In President Bush's first 10 months, GOP fundraiser Jack Abramoff and his lobbying team logged nearly 200 contacts with the new administration as they pressed for friendly hires at federal agencies and sought to keep the Northern Mariana Islands exempt from the minimum wage and other laws, records show.

The meetings between Abramoff's lobbying team and the administration ranged from Attorney General John Ashcroft to policy advisers in Vice President Dick Cheney's office, according to his lobbying firm billing records.

Abramoff, a $100,000-plus fundraiser for Bush, is now under criminal investigation for some of his lobbying work. His firm boasted its lobbying team helped revise a section of the Republican Party's 2000 platform to make it favorable to its island client.

In addition, two of Abramoff's lobbying colleagues on the Marianas won political appointments inside federal agencies.

"Our standing with the new administration promises to be solid as several friends of the CNMI (islands) will soon be taking high-ranking positions in the Administration, including within the Interior Department," Abramoff wrote in a January 2001 letter in which he persuaded the island government to follow him as a client to his new lobbying firm, Greenberg Traurig.

The reception Abramoff's team received from the Bush administration was in stark contrast to the chilly relations of the Clinton years. Abramoff, then at the Preston Gates firm, scored few meetings with Clinton aides and the lobbyist and the islands vehemently opposed White House attempts to extend U.S. labor laws to the territory's clothing factories.

The records from Abramoff's firm, obtained by The Associated Press from the Marianas under an open records request, chronicle Abramoff's careful cultivation of relations with Bush's political team as far back as 1997.


In that year, Abramoff charged the Marianas for getting then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush to write a letter expressing support for the Pacific territory's school choice proposal, his billing records show.

"I hope you will keep my office informed on the progress of this initiative," Bush wrote in a July 18, 1997, letter praising the islands' school plan and [sic]copying in an Abramoff deputy.[/sic]

Right, Bush hardly knew him. Oh that sounds truthful. And definitely flimsy.

Edited by - beskeptigal on 01/17/2007 02:24:25
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Boron10
Religion Moderator

USA
1266 Posts

Posted - 01/17/2007 :  07:14:35   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Boron10 a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal:
Yes, Boron. Explain to me how you've read Moly Ivans, Bob Woodward, Amy Goodman, Bill Moyer, Richard Clark, John O'Neal, followed the Abramoff stuff since 2001 when I first found out about his dealings in Saipan, followed Bush's follies and cronyism since 1999 when the long national nightmare began and still think Bush was somehow not involved with Abramoff.
Could you please rephrase this? I'm not sure I understand what you're trying to say.
quote:
What would you like to see, an indictment? Don't hold your breath. It still doesn't mean Bush didn't trade favors for campaign funds and who knows what else, with full knowledge Abramoff and Delay were lining their pockets. You are talking about the unified Republican Party here. Abramoff had direct dealings with the White House over 400 times according to their documents. You think Bush really didn't know who DeLay's best buddy was?
For what it's worth, I would not be surprised if the President had dealings with Abramoff. I am only pointing out that the evidence you have presented is weak.
quote:
If you look at nothing else, look at Bill Moyers investigative report on Abramoff. Moyers leaves no doubt the White House was involved.
Ok.

quote:
BTW, are you aware of the Saipan sweatshops DeLay kept the Congress from addressing? Women from China, told they were going to get jobs in the USA, end up in Saipan, unable to return, forced labor, forced prostitution, forced abortions, and the clothes they make have "made in the USA" labels. The Saipan sweatshop owners paid millions to DeLay and to Abramoff, and DeLay prevented the Bill from ever getting to the Floor of Congress for a vote which would have helped those women.
.
.
.
Yes, I did know about that. Interesting that you feel this has anything to do with a connection between President Bush and Mr. Abramoff. What is your point in presenting this?
quote:
Since it's doubtful you actually checked out any of the evidence, here's a spoonful.
.
.
.
I will, once again, agree that you have evidence. I will also ask that you attempt to understand my point, rather than accusing me of not looking at your flimsy evidence. Last, I will remind you that I am willing to explain/rephrase anything you don't understand.
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13470 Posts

Posted - 01/17/2007 :  09:11:09   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message
beskeptigal, I think what boron is saying is that even though the connections look bad, and probably are bad, the hard evidence is weak because any conclusion drawn must rely on speculation. And there is enough on Bush that is much less speculative to get him on…

And Boron, even though my personal speculations carry no weight, I think beskeptigal's conclusions are probably on the mark…

Too bad Bush isn't taping every conversation in the oval office like Nixon did…

Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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Boron10
Religion Moderator

USA
1266 Posts

Posted - 01/17/2007 :  19:11:46   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Boron10 a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Kil:
beskeptigal, I think what boron is saying is that even though the connections look bad, and probably are bad, the hard evidence is weak because any conclusion drawn must rely on speculation. And there is enough on Bush that is much less speculative to get him on…
Exactly!
quote:
And Boron, even though my personal speculations carry no weight, I think beskeptigal's conclusions are probably on the mark…
I, too, think her conclusions are probably correct; however, it irks me a bit when anybody is condemned on (what looks to me like) obviously speculative evidence.
quote:
Too bad Bush isn't taping every conversation in the oval office like Nixon did…
no doubt.
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Mycroft
Skeptic Friend

USA
427 Posts

Posted - 01/18/2007 :  14:00:39   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Mycroft a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
BTW, are you aware of the Saipan sweatshops DeLay kept the Congress from addressing? Women from China, told they were going to get jobs in the USA, end up in Saipan, unable to return, forced labor, forced prostitution, forced abortions, and the clothes they make have "made in the USA" labels. The Saipan sweatshop owners paid millions to DeLay and to Abramoff, and DeLay prevented the Bill from ever getting to the Floor of Congress for a vote which would have helped those women.


I think it's fascinating how you keep changing the topic. This thread has gone from:

1) A photograph "proves" close ties between Abramoff and Bush.

2) There is lot's of evidence (circumstantial) other than the photograph of ties between Abramoff and Bush.

3) Tom DeLay is a sleazy politician who blocked some very important legislation.

It's almost as though you believe that evidence of any one bad thing done by a Republican somehow magically proves any and all other allegations made against Bush, and that anyone who is skeptical of any one charge must also be in denial about all criticism of the Bush administration.

Let me give you a clue for free:

Tom DeLay's sleazy actions in regard to Saipan sweatshops are indeed sleazy, but they have nothing to do with a photograph of Abramoff and Bush and it doesn't prove anything except how sleazy DeLay is.

What you're doing is analogous to smearing Nancy Pelosi by bringing up Ted Kennedy's Chappaquiddick incident. You're trying to prove guilt with nothing more than association and without hard evidence.
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beskeptigal
SFN Die Hard

USA
3834 Posts

Posted - 01/22/2007 :  15:22:18   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send beskeptigal a Private Message
Mycroft claimed I drew a conclusion from the photo. I did not. I drew it from much reading on the subject.

Mycroft, are you saying the thread is about the photo and only the photo? And discussing additional evidence beyond the photo is changing the subject? Would you prefer the thread was about the merits of assuming too much from seeing two people in proximity? That's a pretty narrow thread.

There is more than substantial evidence Bush lied about knowing Abramoff. The ties go all the way back to Texas.

Delay, Abramoff and Bush all have long histories crossing paths in Texas.

Bill Moyers uncovered substantial evidence Bush was fully aware at least, in unethical transactions involving Abromoff. There is corroborating evidence for that much.

And what I am saying about the list of books and authors, Tim, (now that we are acquainted ), is that I have been following these politicians very closely for several years. I know a lot about them, including Abramoff, and including a lot about their years before the Abramoff scandal broke.


I'm happy to concede the obvious may not be 'prooved' but to call the evidence 'weak' is flat out wrong.


Edited by - beskeptigal on 01/22/2007 15:24:45
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Mycroft
Skeptic Friend

USA
427 Posts

Posted - 01/22/2007 :  23:25:36   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Mycroft a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
Mycroft claimed I drew a conclusion from the photo. I did not. I drew it from much reading on the subject.


Except I never made that claim beskeptigal. Your perception is so skewed, you can't even tell what I've said.

quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
Mycroft, are you saying the thread is about the photo and only the photo?


No, this thread can be about whatever you wish. We can start talking about pink unicorns if you want, just understand that something said about pink unicorns doesn't prove any relationship between Bush Jr. and Jack Abramoff. Even if they're Republican unicorns.

quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
And discussing additional evidence beyond the photo is changing the subject? Would you prefer the thread was about the merits of assuming too much from seeing two people in proximity? That's a pretty narrow thread.


Of course that would be a very narrow thread, which is why it's perfectly natural for threads to expand and shift topics. However it's still a non-sequitur when you're talking about the relationship between Bush Jr and Abramoff and suddenly you throw in an anecdote about how sleazy Tom DeLay was. It might fit in with a general theme of Republican bashing, but it doesn't offer any evidence towards your initial point.

quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
There is more than substantial evidence Bush lied about knowing Abramoff. The ties go all the way back to Texas.


Okay.

1) Knowing Abramoff is not a crime.

2) Lying about knowing Abramoff is not a crime.

3) Link Bush to Abramoff all day long, it still means nothing if you don't find evidence of anything illegal.

quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
Delay, Abramoff and Bush all have long histories crossing paths in Texas.


I bet those three can be linked to any high level republican. Let's just save time and throw them all in re-education camps.
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Boron10
Religion Moderator

USA
1266 Posts

Posted - 01/23/2007 :  09:09:18   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Boron10 a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Mycroft:
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal:
Mycroft claimed I drew a conclusion from the photo. I did not. I drew it from much reading on the subject.
Except I never made that claim beskeptigal. Your perception is so skewed, you can't even tell what I've said.
No, I made that claim. When beskeptigal called me on it, I realized my mistake and apologized.
quote:
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal:
Mycroft, are you saying the thread is about the photo and only the photo?
No, this thread can be about whatever you wish. We can start talking about pink unicorns if you want, just understand that something said about pink unicorns doesn't prove any relationship between Bush Jr. and Jack Abramoff. Even if they're Republican unicorns.
Mycroft, although she did add some points that did not seem relevant to the point, beskeptigal also provided a large number of sources linking President Bush to Mr. Abramoff. As far as I can tell, you and I disagreed with the quality of evidence provided; but, many of her sourced articles were quite pertinent.
quote:
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal
And discussing additional evidence beyond the photo is changing the subject? Would you prefer the thread was about the merits of assuming too much from seeing two people in proximity? That's a pretty narrow thread.
Of course that would be a very narrow thread, which is why it's perfectly natural for threads to expand and shift topics. However it's still a non-sequitur when you're talking about the relationship between Bush Jr and Abramoff and suddenly you throw in an anecdote about how sleazy Tom DeLay was. It might fit in with a general theme of Republican bashing, but it doesn't offer any evidence towards your initial point.
I agree. Perhaps (this is just wild speculation here) she is attempting to establish connections among the three of them, and showing that all three are bad people?
quote:
quote:
Originally posted by beskeptigal:
There is more than substantial evidence Bush lied about knowing Abramoff. The ties go all the way back to Texas.
Okay.

1) Knowing Abramoff is not a crime.
True; however, it is suspicious, and I believe that's all beskeptigal was getting at.
quote:
2) Lying about knowing Abramoff is not a crime.
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