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To: one_less who wrote (20742)1/21/2011 12:56:23 PM
From: Skywatcher
   of 20773
Priebus' Republican National Committee: A Wholly Owned Subsidiary of David Koch's Americans for Prosperity?
By Adele M. Stan, AlterNet
Posted on January 21, 2011, Printed on January 21, 2011

To the casual political observer, Reince Priebus, the newly elected chairman of the Republican National Committee, seemed to come out of nowhere. But to Wisconsin progressives, Priebus is known as the state Republican Party operative who allegedly tried to suppress the votes of minorities and students in both the recent midterm congressional elections and the 2008 presidential election -- in apparent coordination with David Koch's Americans For Prosperity.

Inside the world of Tea Party Inc. -- the array of well-funded, Washington-insider, Tea Party-affiliated astroturf groups such as Americans for Prosperity and FreedomWorks -- Priebus is known as a team player, the guy who, as chairman of the Republican Party of Wisconsin, would help knock the scruffiest of Tea Party activists out of Republican primaries in favor of presumably more electable Tea Party-branded figures, such as Ron Johnson, the victorious U.S. Senate candidate who was endorsed by FreedomWorks in his primary.

On the eve of the election for RNC chair, Mark Block, who just stepped down from his post as state director for the Wisconsin chapter of Americans for Prosperity, lauded Priebus in a Daily Caller op-ed for having supplied AFP with bus transportation and GOP staff support "for the movement of an enormous number of Tea Party activists from the outskirts of Madison to the rally site on the steps of the State Capitol, where over 8,000 people gathered" for a 2009 AFP rally. But the collegiality of the two involves logistical planning of another kind. Priebus was allegedly involved in an alleged voter suppression scheme launched by a Wisconsin Tea Party group, GrandSons of Liberty, with the assistance of Americans for Prosperity.

As reported in November by Sarah Posner for the Investigative Fund of the Nation Institute (and reprinted by AlterNet), Americans for Prosperity was implicated, together with the Republican Party of Wisconsin, in a voter-caging scheme designed to challenge the votes of university students in Milwaukee, and voters in a largely African American assembly district in the city. With the election of Priebus last week to the helm of the national GOP, AlterNet decided to take a second look at the scheme, and found Priebus' own chief counsel deeply involved, providing lists to Tea Party activists of voters targeted for purging from the rolls.

Priebus and Americans for Prosperity: 'We're In'

"Voter caging" is a term used for a process designed to challenge the legitimacy of a voter's registration by sending out mail marked "do not forward" -- in this case, postcards -- to the addresses of targeted registered voters, and challenging the registrations of those at addresses from which the mail is returned as "undeliverable." The non-partisan Brennan Center for Justice describes it this way: "Voter caging…is notoriously unreliable. If it is treated as the sole basis for determining that a voter is ineligible or does not live at the address at which he or she registered, it can lead to the unwarranted purge or challenge of eligible voters."

At a June 2010 meeting of Tea Party activists eager to join in the right's unsubstantiated claims of widespread voter fraud, Tim Dake, leader of the Wisconsin GrandSons of Liberty, outlined the Tea Party/GOP/AFP caging plan, saying, "So, what we're hoping is that the various groups in the coalition, plus Americans for Prosperity and Mark Block, who has been in on this, and the Republican Party -- and this is coming all the way from the top: Reince Priebus has said, 'We're in.'"

At the meeting, Dake notes the importance of the GOP's involvement, since it has access to the "Voter Vault" -- the database of registered voters. An audiotape of the meeting was obtained by the progressive group One Wisconsin Now.

"They can go in there and look for lapsed voters," Dake explained to the group.

In the scheme to which Priebus and Mark Block, then Americans for Prosperity's state director, were apparently parties, college students at the University of Wisconsin/Milwaukee and Marquette University were the prime targets, as were residents of a Milwaukee African American neighborhood.

Scot Ross, executive director of One Wisconsin Now, told me last October that the plan appeared to involve sending out the caging postcards in the summertime to voters in precincts where most residences were dorms, noting that most students are on vacation in the summer. (And, of course, many return to different dorms the following term.) Presumably, any cards returned to the Tea Party group marked "undeliverable" would be used as evidence to challenge that person's vote in the November midterm elections.

Photographing Homes of Targeted Voters

In a July memo outlining the plan, Dake said that Americans for Prosperity was preparing the initial mailing of 500 postcards to voters in Wisconsin's 16th assembly district -- which has a large African American population -- and that more would be mailed as funding allowed. AFP's Mark Block initially denied having any part in the scheme, but when the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel obtained a statement from Dake saying Block had been involved in more than one meeting on the plan, Block admitted that AFP had sent out the initial 500-piece mailing. However, Block said, since only 10 cards were returned as undeliverable, the plan was abandoned.

Priebus' office denied any involvement in the actual sending of letters. From the Journal Sentinel:

State Republican Party executive director Mark Jefferson said Priebus had had only general discussions with Dake about the issue of voter fraud and that the GOP had never actually went ahead with any of the plans Dake had outlined in the recording.

"We had discussions with everyone about this, but as far as sending out letters like this, I haven't had any discussions like that," Jefferson said.

However, a document uncovered this fall by One Wisconsin Now casts doubt both on that assertion and on Block's claim that the voter-caging plan was abandoned before the midterm elections. At the very least, the Republican Party of Wisconsin, under Priebus' leadership, monitored the addresses of registered voters via surveillance conducted by Tea Party activists -- who were provided with lists of "questionable addresses" by the Wisconsin GOP.

On September 16, Dake forwarded to a group of Tea Party activists an e-mail (obtained by One Wisconsin Now) from Jonathan Waclawski, then the finance director and chief counsel of the Republican Party of Wisconsin, with the subject line: COALITION NEWS: FOR LEADERSHIP: Voter Fraud Project. In the e-mail -- originally sent to Dake and Mark Musselman, also of the GrandSons of Liberty -- Waclawski explains that the party already has good "coverage" in 17 counties, but could "use help" in others, notably in Milwaukee County, which he contends "has over 16,000 questionable addresses."

In his introduction to the Republican Party e-mail, Dake verifies that Waclawski's e-mail is part of the same project discussed at the June meeting where One Wisconsin Now obtained the damning audio, writing: "Here are the forms for the voter fraud project that was debuted at the Marshfield meeting in June…The idea is to verify the suspect voter registrations per the supporting documentation."

Attached to the e-mail were four documents, including a non-disclosure agreement signed by Waclawski for the Republican Party of Wisconsin, which barred participants in the project (presumably the Tea Party activists conducting the voter "fraud" project) from disclosing that information to anyone but the Republican Party. There is also one offering instructions for a step-by-step address verification process that includes taking photos of buildings listed on the voter rolls bearing "questionable addresses" and instructions for forwarding the information to Waclawski. In a press release, One Wisconsin Now described that as an instruction to "photograph the homes of people targeted for voter suppression activities."

"One Wisconsin Now made a formal request for investigation with the U.S. Attorney's Office, as well as the Wisconsin Attorney General's Election Integrity Task Force and the Government Accountability Board," reads a statement issued by the group.

The group also cites Priebus' involvement in voter-caging schemes executed in previous elections in Milwaukee precincts. "In 2002, the state Elections Board enacted new guidelines for poll-watchers in response to a Priebus-led racially charged voter intimidation scheme in Milwaukee," Scot Ross said in a statement. "In 2008, Priebus' Republican Party of Wisconsin sent out an email recruiting volunteers for alleged 'inner city' voter intimidation in Milwaukee."

As of press time, the Republican National Committee had not returned AlterNet's call for comment. This story will be updated if we receive a response from the RNC.

Not Everyone's Cup of Tea

While Americans for Prosperity and the GrandSons of Liberty may love them some Reince Preibus, the same can't be said for some of those Wisconsin Tea Party leaders not supported by the big money of the Koch brothers. Some saw an inside game at work in Priebus' endorsements of Senate candidate Ron Johnson and gubernatorial candidate Scott Walker in their primaries, races in which they were competing against other Tea Party candidates. Politico's Kenneth P. Vogel reports that eight Wisconsin Tea Party leaders, including Ken Van Doren of the Campaign for Liberty, and Dan Horvatin of the Rock River Patriots, are miffed at what looked to them like the backroom dealings of the power class in the GOP primaries.

And Michael Steele humbly compared himself to Julius Caesar, casting Priebus, whom Steele had elevated to the RNC as general counsel, in the Brutus role for having challenged and defeated Steele in this year's race for national party chairman. "I know exactly how Caesar felt," Steele told Tim Mak of Frum Forum, claiming that Priebus had apparently been plotting his challenge to his mentor for at least six months before announcing he was getting into the race. "We put a lot of resources in Wisconsin over the last two years…." Steele told Mak. "[T]hat's what you do for [the] team."

It seems that nobody told the astroturf crew of the ground-level disgruntlement with Priebus. Russ Walker of FreedomWorks, which was founded with Koch's money, told WBUR, the Boston NPR affiliate: "In some states, you have a disconnect between the grassroots and the party. You just don't see that in places like Wisconsin. And you don't see it with a guy like Reince."

Who Owns the GOP Now? Who Owns the Tea Party?

At the swearing-in of the new Republican majority in the House of Representatives, David Koch, chairman of the Americans for Prosperity Foundation, made a rare public appearance. You could hardly blame him for wanting to witness the fruits of a victory that his billions and his operatives had worked hard to obtain by any means necessary.

But there's another casualty besides the Democratic Party reflected in the ascendancy of Reince Priebus to the helm of the GOP. The true grassroots of the Tea Party movement has gotten a kick in the teeth, while Koch's astroturfing operation triumphed, subsuming the Tea Party under its own brand -- and the GOP, as well.

Talking to Politico, Jake Speed of La Crosse Liberty Coalition said, "A lot of people like to say that the Republican Party kind of co-opted the Tea Parties, but I think it was the other way around."

Well, that depends on whose Tea Parties you're talking about. If you're talking about David Koch's Tea Parties -- the groups that work with Americans for Prosperity -- then you'd be right. Game over.

Adele M. Stan is AlterNet's Washington bureau chief.
© 2011 Independent Media Institute. All rights reserved.
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To: Skywatcher who wrote (20746)1/21/2011 3:09:16 PM
From: TimF
   of 20773
How Can the Richest 1 Percent Be Winning This Brutal Class War Against 99% of US

The question assumed something that isn't true. There is no general class war in the US, and particularly not from the richest one or ten percent, who generally create wealth rather than take it, and who also pay significantly more in taxes than their percentage of the national income. Some of them are of course rent-seekers, and I consider at least the more extreme cases of that to be reprehensible, but while rent-seeking is reasonably common it is not the prime factor in the wealth or income for most wealthy people.

George Bush’s biggest regret is that he didn’t privatize social security. Why so eager?

Another question that assumes a false premise. Privatization would be getting government out of it, essentially there would be no social security. Having privately owned accounts on the side, you don't really have privatization.

As to why he was so eager to have privately owned accounts on the side? Well they would allow a portion of social security to actually be invested and generate a return. Currently the "trust fund" (in quotes because it is no such thing) is "invested" in government bonds. Government bonds sounds like an investment and it would be for you or me, but not for the government itself. If you lend money to yourself you don't actually have an asset (and so there is and never was a trust fund). If I take $100 from my right pocket and put it in my left and writhe out a note "Right pocket, I owe you $100 and will pay 5 percent interest", and put that note in my right pocket, I don't actually have an asset.

If we assume that the government will pay out social security payments without severe cuts then the "trust fund" makes no difference in reality.

Lets say the government brings in $X with social security taxes, and it needs to spend $X+$100bil on social security payments. We'll assume it does actually make the payments.

If there is a "trust fund" of a hundred quadrillion dollars, what happens? The government takes $100bil in ordinary income taxes and uses them to pay for Social Security payments.

If there is a "balance of zero in the trust fund", what happens? The government takes $100bil in ordinary income taxes and uses them to pay for Social Security payments.

The "trust fund" has no effect whatsoever, its meaningless, if you assume the government is actually going to make the social security payments.

Under current law its not meaningless, in one way, and for one reason, only - That under current law if there is an insufficient "balance" in the nominal trust fund, to cover a shortfall of social security taxes, then the social security payments automatically get cut.

But that law might easily be changed considering the power of the senior voting block. And even if it isn't its a law that reduces payments based on an accounting entry that other than that specific point of the law has no real world significance.

His recent tax deal includes cuts on employee contributions to Social Security. Which means defunding, weakening, and setting a new precedent, that Social Security contributions can be cut to “stimulate” the economy.

Its a tax cut like any other tax cut. You can be for or against it for any number of reasons, but it hardly signifies any kind of ideological hatred, or hostility to Social Security.

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To: Skywatcher who wrote (20744)1/21/2011 3:16:32 PM
From: TimF
   of 20773
"Almost treasonous" is ridiculous. They have a serious disagreement about this treaty, they think it will, or at least might, be harmful to our national security. They might be wrong (or they might not be), you might even argue that they are foolish, but even if that's true (and you haven't demonstrated that in any way), "foolish" and "treasonous" (even just "almost") are very different things.

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To: TimF who wrote (20749)1/24/2011 2:11:18 AM
From: Skywatcher
   of 20773
putting their 'power' ahead of the military security of the US on a treaty that was a DONE DEAL and one that would ensure a much healthier nuclear balance is almost treasonous

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To: Skywatcher who wrote (20750)1/24/2011 10:56:09 AM
From: TimF
   of 20773
They believe the treaty was against the security interest of the US.

I understand you think their wrong, but even if not ratifying the treaty would be harmful to the country (which is debatable itself), that doesn't mean they agree. They would have to completely agree about the harm for it to be even vaguely treasonous, and really it would have to be serious deliberate harm at the behest of or in cooperation with, or to serve the interest of, our enemies.

I understand that some on the right have thrown "treason", around all to easily, but that isn't any reason to do the same.

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To: TimF who wrote (20751)1/24/2011 1:15:14 PM
From: Skywatcher
2 Recommendations   of 20773
they...stupid REPUBLICAN politicians trying to GRAB POWER...vs...
EVERY SINGLE STATE DEPARTMENT without reservation have supported this treaty signing FOR YEARS
vs their sick GOP attempted power grab in order to EMBARRASS the US PRESIDENT for their own political BS....AND put the United States and the rest of the world into a much more nuclear situation

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To: Skywatcher who wrote (20752)1/24/2011 3:21:08 PM
From: TimF
   of 20773





Probably false

And all irrelevant. Your appeal to (unspecific) authority is a weak argument anyway, like appeals to authority in general, but more to the point it is an argument that the people you are criticizing are wrong on this issue, not that they have the same opinion that you do, about how beneficial this treaty may be, but don't want it because of their own self-interest.

Not all the opponents have much in the way of self-interest on this issue. For those that do, that still doesn't mean they are lying, they could still be correct, or they could be wrong. If the later they could be honestly wrong. Self interest can help convince you of the general merits of some idea, without any dishonesty being involved, it would be bias, but not necessarily lying or acting deliberately against the interest of the country. I know you think they are wrong, but people often are wrong, while still being well-motivated.

And you haven't even established that the treaty is in the interests of the country. I haven't looked in to it enough to be sure, but the only argument you've made for it is one of the weakest types of arguments, an appeal to authority. X is Y because Z says its Y, as if experts on an issue (even when they do pretty much all agree which isn't the case here) could never be wrong.

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To: TimF who wrote (20753)1/25/2011 1:06:22 PM
From: Skywatcher
   of 20773
THIS IS EVERYONE...except a FEW DICKHEAD AND QUESTIONABLE "American Republican" Senators

Testimony from Former Republican Officials in Favor of New START Ratification:

* Former Secretaries of Defense James Schlesinger and William Perry – Senate Foreign Relations Committee, April 29, 2010.
* Former Secretary Henry Kissinger – Senate Foreign Relations Committee, May 25, 2010.
* Former Secretary of State James Baker – Senate Foreign Relations Committee, May 19, 2010.
* Former National Security Advisors Lieutenant General Brent Scowcroft and Stephen Hadley – Senate Foreign Relations Committee, June 10, 2010.

National Security Experts Who Have Endorsed New START Ratification:

Madeleine Albright, Secretary of State, 1997-2001
Howard Baker, U.S. Senator (R-TN), 1967-85
Samuel Berger, National Security Advisor, 1997-2001
Dr. Barry Blechman, Assistant Director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, 1977-80; Commissioner, Commission to Assess the Ballistic Missile Threat to the United States, 1998-99
Linton Brooks, Administrator, National Nuclear Security Administration, 2002-07
Harold Brown, Secretary of Defense, 1977-81
Mark Brzezinski, Director of Southeast European Affairs, National Security Council, 1999-2001
Richard Burt, Chief START Negotiator, 1989-91
Frank Carlucci, Secretary of Defense, 1987-89
Warren Christopher, Secretary of State, 1993-97
William Cohen, Secretary of Defense, 1997-2001
John C. Danforth, U.S. Senator (R-MO), 1977-95
Kenneth M. Duberstein, White House Chief of Staff,1988-89
Lieutenant General Robert Gard, U.S. Army (Ret), President of the National Defense University, 1977-81
Vice Admiral Lee Gunn, U.S. Navy (Ret), Inspector General of the Department of the Navy, 1997-2000
Chuck Hagel, U.S. Senator (R-NE), 1997-2009
Lee Hamilton, U.S. Congressman (D-IN), 1965-99
Gary Hart, U.S. Senator (D-CO), 1975-87
Rita E. Hauser, Chair, International Peace Institute
Carla Hills, U.S. Trade Representative, 1989-93
Lieutenant General Dirk Jameson, U.S. Air Force (Ret), Commander of U.S. ICBM forces 1992-94; Deputy Commander-In-Chief of U.S. Strategic Command, 1994-96
Nancy Kassebaum-Baker, U.S. Senator (R-KS), 1978-97
Thomas Kean, Governor (R-NJ), 1982-90; 9/11 Commission Chair
Lawrence Korb, Assistant Secretary of Defense, 1981-85
Richard Leone, President, The Century Foundation
Donald McHenry, U.S. Ambassador to the UN, 1979-81
Sam Nunn, U.S. Senator (D-GA), 1972-96
William Perry, Secretary of Defense, 1994-97
Thomas Pickering, Under Secretary of State, 1997-2000
Steven Pifer, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, 2001-04
Colin L. Powell, Secretary of State, 2001-05
Warren Rudman, U.S. Senator (R-NH), 1980-92
Wendy Sherman, Commissioner, Commission for the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction, Proliferation and Terrorism; Special Advisor and Policy Coordinator on U.S. policy toward North Korea, 1997-2001
Alan Simpson, U.S. Senator (R-WY), 1979-97
George Shultz, Secretary of State, 1982-89
Theodore Sorensen, White House Special Counsel, 1961-63
John Whitehead, Deputy Secretary of State, 1985-88
Timothy E. Wirth, U.S. Senator (D-CO), 1987-93
Frank Wisner, Under Secretary of State, 1992-93

(Quotations compiled by National Security Network and Center for Arms Control and Nonproliferation)


Secretary of Defense Robert Gates: “The New START Treaty has the unanimous support of America’s military leadership—to include the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, all of the service chiefs, and the commander of the U.S. Strategic Command, the organization responsible for our strategic nuclear deterrent. For nearly 40 years, treaties to limit or reduce nuclear weapons have been approved by the U.S. Senate by strong bipartisan majorities. This treaty deserves a similar reception and result-on account of the dangerous weapons it reduces, the critical defense capabilities it preserves, the strategic stability it maintains, and, above all, the security it provides to the American people.” [Secretary Gates, 5/13/10]

James Schlesinger, Secretary of Defense for Presidents Nixon and Ford and the Secretary of Energy for President Carter: “It is obligatory for the United States to ratify.” [James Schlesinger, 4/29/10]

Admiral Michael Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff: “I am pleased to add my voice in support of ratification of the New START treaty and to do so as soon as possible. We are in our seventh month without a treaty with Russia.” [Admiral Mullen, 6/17/10]

Dr. James Miller, Principal Deputy Defense Undersecretary for Policy: “The New START Treaty is strongly in the national security interest of the United States. The Department of Defense fully supports the treaty.” [James Miller, 6/16/10]

Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN): “I support the New START treaty and believe that it will enhance United States national security.” [Senator Lugar, 4/29/10]

Henry Kissinger, National Security Advisor to President Nixon and Secretary of State to Presidents Nixon and Ford: “In deciding on ratification, the concerns need to be measured against the consequences of non-ratification, particularly interrupting a [bilateral arms control] process that has been going on for decades, the relationship to the NPT, and to the attempt to achieve a strategic coherence. And so, for all these reasons, I recommend ratification of this treaty…In short, this committee’s decision will affect the prospects for peace for a decade or more. It is, by definition, not a bipartisan, but a nonpartisan, challenge.” [Henry Kissinger, 5/25/10]

Colin Powell, Madeleine Albright, Samuel Berger, Frank Carlucci, Chuck Hagel, John Danforth and many other prominent national security experts: “We, the undersigned Republicans and Democrats, support the New START treaty.” [30 Bipartisan Leaders via Partnership for a Secure America, 6/24/10]


Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael Mullen: “The New START deals directly with some of the most lethal of those common challenges – our stockpiles of strategic nuclear weapons. By dramatically reducing these stockpiles, this treaty achieves a proper balance more in keeping with today’s security environment, reducing tensions even as it bolsters nonproliferation efforts. It features a much more effective, transparent verification method that demands quicker data exchanges and notifications… In other words, through the trust it engenders, the cuts it requires, and the flexibility it preserves, this treaty enhances our ability to do that which we have been charged to do: protect and defend the citizens of the United States.” [Admiral Michael Mullen, 3/27/10]

Stephen Hadley, National Security Advisor to President George W. Bush: “The New START Treaty makes its modest but nonetheless useful contribution to the national security of the United States and to international stability.” [Stephen Hadley, 6/10/10]

Secretary of Energy Steven Chu: “New START is an important part of President Obama’s nuclear security agenda. If ratified and entered into force, the treaty will commit the United States and the Russian Federation to lower levels of deployed strategic nuclear weapons in a transparent and verifiable way. This will increase stability between our countries, while demonstrating our joint commitment to a nuclear nonproliferation treaty.” [Secretary Chu, 6/17/10]

Former Secretary of State James Baker: “Although I am not an expert on the nuances of the proposed New START treaty, it appears to take our country in a direction that can enhance our national security while at the same time reducing the number of nuclear warheads on the planet. It can also improve Washington’s relationship with Moscow regarding nuclear weapons and delivery vehicles, a relationship that will be vital if the two countries are to cooperate in order to stem nuclear proliferation in countries such as Iran and North Korea.” [James Baker, 5/19/10]

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton: “This is a treaty that if ratified will provide stability, transparency and predictability for the two countries with more than 90 percent of the world’s nuclear weapons. It is a treaty that will reduce the permissible number of Russian- and U.S.-deployed strategic warheads to 1,550, a level not seen since the 1950s.” [Secretary Clinton, 6/17/10]

General Kevin Chilton, STRATCOM Commander: “I believe that there are three reasons why the New START agreement represents a positive step forward. First, New START limits the number of Russian ballistic missile warheads and strategic delivery vehicles that can target the United States. Second, New START retains efficient flexibility in managing our deterrent forces to hedge against technical or geopolitical surprise. And third, New START will re-establish a strategic nuclear arms control verification regime that provides access to Russian nuclear forces and a measure of predictability in Russian force deployments over the life of the treaty.” [General Chilton, 6/16/10]

Admiral Michael Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff: “The chiefs and I believe the New START treaty achieves an important and necessary balance between three critical aims. It allows us to retain a strong and flexible American nuclear deterrent. It helps strengthen openness and transparency in our relationship with Russia. It also demonstrates our national commitment to reducing the worldwide risk of a nuclear incident resulting from the continuing proliferation of nuclear weapons.” [Admiral Mullen, 6/17/10]


General Kevin Chilton, STRATCOM Commander:

“If we don’t get the treaty, [the Russians] are not constrained in their development of force structure and…we have no insight into what they’re doing. So its the worst of both possible worlds.” [General Chilton, 6/16/10]

General Brent Scowcroft (Ret.), President George H.W. Bush’s National Security Advisor: “The principal result of non-ratification would be to throw the whole nuclear negotiating situation into a state of chaos.” [Brent Scowcroft, 6/10/10]

James Schlesinger, Secretary of Defense for Presidents Nixon and Ford and the Secretary of Energy for President Carter: Failure to ratify this treaty “would have a detrimental effect on our ability to influence others with regard to, particularly, the nonproliferation issue.” [James Schlesinger, 4/29/10]

Former Defense Secretary William Perry “If we fail to ratify this treaty, the U.S. forfeits any right to leadership on nonproliferation policies.” [William Perry, 4/29/10]

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton: “The consequences of not ratifying this treaty would have very serious impacts on our relationship with Russia, and would frankly give aid and comfort to a lot of the adversaries we face around the world.” [Hillary Clinton, 6/17/10]

Henry Kissinger, National Security Advisor to President Nixon and Secretary of State to Presidents Nixon and Ford: “This START treaty is an evolution of treaties that have been negotiated in previous administrations of both parties. And its principal provisions are an elaboration or a continuation of existing agreements. Therefore, a rejection of them would indicate that a new period of American policy had started that might rely largely on the unilateral reliance of its nuclear weapons, and would therefore create an element of uncertainty in the calculations of both adversaries and allies. And therefore, I think it would have an unsettling impact on the international environment.” [Henry Kissinger, 5/25/10]


Director of the U.S. Missile Defense Agency, Lieutenant General Patrick O’Reilly: “The New START Treaty actually reduces previous START treaty’s constraints on developing missile defense programs in several areas.” [General O'Reilly, 6/16/10]

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates: “The treaty will not constrain the United States from deploying the most effective missile defenses possible nor impose additional costs or barriers on those defenses.” [Sec. Gates, 6/17/10]

Commander of U.S. Strategic Command General Chilton: “As the combatant command also responsible for synchronizing global missile defense plans, operations, and advocacy, this treaty does not constrain any current missile defense plans.” [General Chilton, 6/16/10]

Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michele Flournoy and Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology & Logistics Ash Carter: “Missile defenses have become a topic of some discussion in the context of the Senate’s consideration of the New START Treaty with Russia. The fact is that the treaty does not constrain the U.S. from testing, developing and deploying missile defenses. Nor does it prevent us from improving or expanding them. Nor does it raise the costs of doing so. We have made clear to our Russian counterparts that missile defense cooperation between us is in our mutual interest, and is not inconsistent with the need to deploy and improve our missile defense capabilities as threats arise.” [Flournoy and Carter via WSJ, 6/17/10]

Senate Hearings on the New START Treaty

Senate Foreign Relations Committee

July 15, 2010 – The New START Treaty: Maintaining a Safe, Secure and Effective Nuclear Arsenal – Witnesses: Dr. Michael R. Anastasio, Director, Los Alamos National Laboratory; Dr. George H. Miller, Director, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory; Dr. Paul J. Hommert, Sandia National Laboratories.

July 14, 2010 – The New START Treaty: Maintaining a Safe, Secure and Effective Nuclear Arsenal (Closed) – Witnesses: The Honorable Rose Gottemoeller, Assistant Secretary for Verification and Compliance, Department of State.

June 24, 2010 – The New START Treaty: Implementation – Inspections and Assistance – Witnesses: The Honorable James N. Miller, Jr., Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, Department of Defense; Kenneth A. Myers III, Director, Defense Threat Reduction Agency and U.S. Strategic Command Center for Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction.

June 24, 2010 – The New START Treaty: Benefits and Risks – Witnesses: The Honorable Robert G. Joseph, Senior Scholar, National Institute for Public Policy; The Honorable Eric S. Edelman, Distinguished Fellow Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, Visiting Scholar Philip Merrill Center for Strategic Studies, Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced and International Studies (SAIS); Dr. Morton H. Halperin, Senior Advisor, Open Society Institute.

June 16, 2010 – The New START Treaty: Views from the Pentagon – Witnesses: The Honorable James N. Miller, Jr., Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, Department of Defense; General Kevin P. Chilton, USAF, Commander, United States Strategic Command; Lieutenant General Patrick J. O’Reilly, USA, Director, Missile Defense Agency.

June 15, 2010 – The New START Treaty: The Negotiations – Witnesses: The Honorable Rose Gottemoeller, Assistant Secretary of State for Verification and Compliance Chief U.S. Negotiator in Post-START Negotiations, Department of State; The Honorable Edward L. Warner, III, Secretary of Defense Representative to Post- START Negotiations, Department of Defense.

June 10, 2010 – Strategic Arms Control and National Security – Witnesses: Lieutenant General Brent Scowcroft, USAF (Ret.), President, The Scowcroft Group; The Honorable Stephen J. Hadley, Senior Adviser for International Affairs, United States Institute of Peace.

June 8, 2010 – The New START Treaty: The Negotiations (Closed) – Witnesses: The Honorable Rose Gottemoeller, Assistant Secretary of State for Verification and Compliance Chief U.S. Negotiator in Post-START Negotiations, Department of State; The Honorable Edward L. Warner, III, Secretary of Defense Representative to Post- START Negotiations, Department of Defense.

May 25, 2010 – The New START Treaty: The Role of Strategic Arms Control in a Post-Cold War World – Witnesses: The Honorable Henry A. Kissinger, Former Secretary of State / Chairman, Kissinger McLarty Associates.

May 19, 2010 – The History and Lessons of START – Witnesses: The Honorable James A. Baker, Former Secretary of State / Former Secretary of the Treasury, Senior Partner, Baker Botts L.L.P.

May 18, 2010 – The New START Treaty – Witnesses: The Honorable Hillary Rodham Clinton, Secretary of State, Department of State; The Honorable Robert Gates, Secretary of Defense, Department of Defense; The Honorable Admiral Michael Mullen, USN, Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff.

April 29, 2010 – The History and Modern Context for U.S.-Russian Arms Control – Witnesses: The Honorable James R. Schlesinger, Chairman of the Board MITRE Corporation / Former Secretary of Defense, Former Secretary of Energy, Former Director of Central Intelligence; The Honorable William J. Perry, Michael and Barbar Berberian Professor, Center for International Security & Cooperation, Stanford University / Former Secretary of Defense.

Senate Armed Services Committee

July 15, 2010 – To receive testimony on sustaining nuclear weapons under the New START (Open/Closed) – Witnesses: Dr. Michael R. Anastasio, Director, Los Alamos National Laboratory; Dr. George H. Miller, Director, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory; Dr. Paul J. Hommert, Sandia National Laboratories; Dr. Roy F. Schwitters, Chairman, JASON Defense Advisory Group, S.W. Richardson Foundation Regental Professor of Physics, The University of Texas at Austin.

July 14, 2010 – Briefing on the National Intelligence Estimate on the verifiability of the New START (Closed) – Witnesses: Andrew M. Gibb, National Intelligence Officer for Weapons of Mass Destruction, National Intelligence Council.

June 17, 2010 – To receive testimony on the New START and implications for national security programs – Witnesses: The Honorable Hillary Rodham Clinton, Secretary of State, Department of State; The Honorable Robert Gates, Secretary of Defense, Department of Defense; The Honorable Admiral Michael Mullen, USN, Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff; The Honorable Steven Chu, Secretary of Energy, Department of Energy.

Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

Week of July 12, 2010 – Briefing on the intelligence community’s National Intelligence Estimate on the New START Treaty (Closed) – Witnesses: TBA. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry, Sen. Richard Lugar and former Sen. Sam Nunn, plus former secretaries of state Madeleine Albright, James Baker and Henry Kissinger.Former defense secretaries William Cohen and William Perry and former National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft
former Republican secretaries of state Lawrence Eagleburger and George Shultz join Baker, Kissinger and Powell in calling for bipartisan support. "Republican presidents have long led the crucial fight to protect the United States against nuclear dangers," the group notes.Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the nation’s top military officer, to approve the agreement.

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To: Skywatcher who wrote (20754)1/25/2011 3:43:45 PM
From: TimF
   of 20773
No it isn't everyone, it isn't even vaguely close to everyone.

An accurate statement would be, "it has many prominent supporters from both parties".

But even if it was almost everyone (if it truly was everyone there wouldn't be any controversy, so "almost everyone" is the most even theoretically possible), that wouldn't make your case for you.

Your making multiple unsupported logical leaps. Assuming "almost everyone supports this" doesn't reasonable lead to the conclusion "this is a good idea". Assuming "this is a good idea" doesn't reasonably lead you to "the opponents of this are dishonest, they know its a good idea, but oppose it for selfish reasons only". And even assuming that last, that its only opposed for selfish reasons, doesn't equal "opposing this is treason", or even "almost treasonous". If every special interest objection to a good law, regulation or treaty, and every case of special interest support for laws, regulations, or treaties, that are against the general interest, was treason, the country would be loaded with traitors from all walks of life and from every political ideology or perspective.

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To: TimF who wrote (20755)1/25/2011 8:33:17 PM
From: Skywatcher
   of 20773
ok, want the debate class in full session ok...
to me there is little doubt that ALL of these many many experts from both sides of the platform, way of life, job descriptions, etc. supported this treaty for many years. To me that is the world of diplomacy, military, state department, nuclear experts, etc. coming together as 'everyone' to support this treaty. And the clowns that tried at the last minute to gain attention, power, publicity, and all the while trying to embarrass the President and simultaneously putting the entire world BACK in to a more unstable nuclear position is outrageous...and the whole thing was ANTI AMERICAN interests.
done...I will leave it at that
I'm extreme on it...

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