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2003-05-23 - 8:48 a.m.

Ravynemyst Reviews - 23 May 2003 (UPDATED)

News Flash!

U.S. Senate passes $350 billion tax cut bill 51-50, with Vice President Cheney casting tie-breaking vote. Bill now goes to President Bush's desk.



Another Rat Jumps Ship

U.S. Treasurer Rosario Marin to Resign

This makes #4 in just the last week. Marin said, "After long and thoughtful consideration, my family and I have decided to go back home to California." The same ole pattern. They are all just going HOME to their FAMILIES. Something fishy is up at the HILL.



The Bleaker Side of Life

According to this article:

1. 2.7 Million jobs have been lost since Bush took office
2. The Nation's unemployment rate is at 6%
3. Approximately 8.8 Million people are out of work.

The good news? The House Ok'd an extension of unemployment benefits and the Senate will act on it today. Bush should have the bill to sign later today. This is the third time since December 2001 that unemployment benefits have been extended. Some Democrats and Republicans are saying that JOBS are needed not more extensions on benefits. And I totally agree. Unfortunately those jobs are not being created and people need immediate assistance now.



Is Oregon Going Just A Bit Too Far?

In the state of Oregon, you will be classified a terrorist if a person knowingly plans, participates in or carries out any act that is intended, by at least one of its participants, to disrupt:
(a) The free and orderly assembly of the inhabitants of the State of Oregon;
(b) Commerce or the transportation systems of the State of Oregon; or
(c) The educational or governmental institutions of the State of Oregon or its inhabitants.
(2) A person commits the crime of terrorism if the person conspires to do any of the activities described in subsection (1) of this section.
(3) A person may not be convicted of terrorism except upon the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act or upon confession in open court.
(4)(a) A person convicted of terrorism shall be punished by imprisonment for life.
(b) When a person is convicted of terrorism under this section, the court shall order that the person be confined for a minimum of 25 years without possibility of parole, release to post-prison supervision, release on work release or any form of temporary leave or employment at a forest or work camp.
(c) At any time after completion of a minimum period of confinement pursuant to paragraph(b) of this subsection, the State Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision, upon the petition of a prisoner so confined, shall hold a hearing, the sole issue of which is to determine whether the prisoner is likely to be rehabilitated within a reasonable period of time. The board shall conduct the proceeding in the manner prescribed for a contested case hearing under ORS 183.310 to 183.550 except that:
(A) The prisoner has the burden of proving by a preponderance of the evidence the like-lihood of rehabilitation within a reasonable period of time; and
(B) The prisoner has the right, if the prisoner is without sufficient funds to employ an attorney, to be represented by legal counsel, appointed by the board, at board expense.
(d) If, upon hearing all of the evidence and upon a unanimous vote of all of its members, the board finds that the prisoner is capable of rehabilitation within a reasonable amount of time and that the terms of the prisoner's confinement should be changed to life imprisonment with the possibility of parole, release to post-prison supervision or work re-lease, the board shall enter an order to that effect and convert the terms of the prisoner's confinement to life imprisonment with the possibility of parole, release to post-prison supervision or work release and may set a release date. Otherwise, the board shall deny the relief sought in the petition.
(e) Not less than two years after the denial of the relief sought in a petition under paragraph(c) of this subsection, the prisoner may petition again for a change in the terms of confinement. Further petitions for a change may be filed at intervals of not less than two years thereafter.

So what are the crimes of a terrorist? Here's the list:
(1) Bribe giving, as defined in ORS 162.015.
(2) Bribe receiving, as defined in ORS 162.025.
(3) Public investment fraud, as defined in ORS 162.117.
(4) Bribing a witness, as defined in ORS 162.265.
(5) Bribe receiving by a witness, as defined in ORS 162.275.
(6) Simulating legal process, as defined in ORS 162.355.
(7) Official misconduct in the first degree, as defined in ORS 162.415.
(8) Custodial interference in the second degree, as defined in ORS 163.245.
(9) Custodial interference in the first degree, as defined in ORS 163.257.
(10) Buying or selling a person under 18 years of age, as defined in ORS 163.537.
(11) Using a child in a display of sexually explicit conduct, as defined in ORS 163.670.
(12) Encouraging child sexual abuse in the first degree, as defined in ORS 163.684.
(13) Encouraging child sexual abuse in the second degree, as defined in ORS 163.686.
(14) Encouraging child sexual abuse in the third degree, as defined in ORS 163.687.
(15) Possession of materials depicting sexually explicit conduct of a child in the first degree, as defined in ORS 163.688.
(16) Possession of materials depicting sexually explicit conduct of a child in the second degree, as defined in ORS 163.689.
(17) Theft in the second degree, as defined in ORS 164.045.
(18) Theft in the first degree, as defined in ORS 164.055.
(19) Aggravated theft in the first degree, as defined in ORS 164.057.
(20) Theft by extortion, as defined in ORS 164.075.
(21)Theft by deception, as defined in ORS 164.085, if it is a felony or a Class A misdemeanor.
(22) Theft by receiving, as defined in ORS 164.095, if it is a felony or a Class A misdemeanor.
(23) Theft of services, as defined in ORS 164.125, if it is a felony or a Class A misdemeanor.
(24) Unauthorized use of a vehicle, as defined in ORS 164.135.
(25) Mail theft or receipt of stolen mail, as defined in ORS 164.162.
(26) Laundering a monetary instrument, as defined in ORS 164.170.
(27) Engaging in a financial transaction in property derived from unlawful activity, as defined in ORS 164.172.
(28) Burglary in the second degree, as defined in ORS 164.215.
(29) Burglary in the first degree, as defined in ORS 164.225.
(30) Possession of burglar's tools, as defined in ORS 164.235.
(31) Unlawful entry into a motor vehicle, as defined in ORS 164.272.
(32) Arson in the second degree, as defined in ORS 164.315.
(33) Arson in the first degree, as defined in ORS 164.325.
(34) Computer crime, as defined in ORS 164.377.
(35) Robbery in the third degree, as defined in ORS 164.395.
(36) Robbery in the second degree, as defined in ORS 164.405.
(37) Robbery in the first degree, as defined in ORS 164.415.
(38) Unlawful labeling of a sound recording, as defined in ORS 164.868.
(39) Unlawful recording of a live performance, as defined in ORS 164.869.
(40) Unlawful labeling of a videotape recording, as defined in ORS 164.872.
(41) A violation of ORS 164.877.
(42) Endangering aircraft, as defined in ORS 164.885.
(43) Interference with agricultural operations, as defined in ORS 164.887.
(44) Forgery in the second degree, as defined in ORS 165.007.
(45) Forgery in the first degree, as defined in ORS 165.013.
(46) Criminal possession of a forged instrument in the second degree, as defined in ORS 165.017.
(47) Criminal possession of a forged instrument in the first degree, as defined in ORS 165.022.
(48) Criminal possession of a forgery device, as defined in ORS 165.032.
(49) Criminal simulation, as defined in ORS 165.037.
(50) Fraudulently obtaining a signature, as defined in ORS 165.042.
(51) Fraudulent use of a credit card, as defined in ORS 165.055.
(52) Negotiating a bad check, as defined in ORS 165.065.
(53) Possessing a fraudulent communications device, as defined in ORS 165.070.
(54) Unlawful factoring of a credit card transaction, as defined in ORS 165.074.
(55) Falsifying business records, as defined in ORS 165.080.
(56) Sports bribery, as defined in ORS 165.085.
(57) Sports bribe receiving, as defined in ORS 165.090.
(58) Misapplication of entrusted property, as defined in ORS 165.095.
(59) Issuing a false financial statement, as defined in ORS 165.100.
(60) Obtaining execution of documents by deception, as defined in ORS 165.102.
(61) A violation of ORS 165.543.
(62) Cellular counterfeiting in the third degree, as defined in ORS 165.577.
(63) Cellular counterfeiting in the second degree, as defined in ORS 165.579.
(64) Cellular counterfeiting in the first degree, as defined in ORS 165.581.
(65) Identity theft, as defined in ORS 165.800.
(66) A violation of ORS 166.190.
(67) Unlawful use of a weapon, as defined in ORS 166.220.
(68) A violation of ORS 166.240.
(69) Unlawful possession of a firearm, as defined in ORS 166.250.
(70) A violation of ORS 166.270.
(71) Unlawful possession of a machine gun, short-barreled rifle, short-barreled shotgun or firearms silencer, as defined in ORS 166.272.
(72) A violation of ORS 166.275.
(73) Unlawful possession of armor piercing ammunition, as defined in ORS 166.350.
(74) A violation of ORS 166.370.
(75) Unlawful possession of a destructive device, as defined in ORS 166.382.
(76) Unlawful manufacture of a destructive device, as defined in ORS 166.384.
(77) Possession of a hoax destructive device, as defined in ORS 166.385.
(78) A violation of ORS 166.410.
(79) Providing false information in connection with a transfer of a handgun, as defined in ORS 166.416.
(80) Improperly transferring a handgun, as defined in ORS 166.418.
(81) Unlawfully purchasing a firearm, as defined in ORS 166.425.
(82) A violation of ORS 166.429.
(83) A violation of ORS 166.470.
(84) A violation of ORS 166.480.
(85) A violation of ORS 166.635.
(86) A violation of ORS 166.638.
(87) Unlawful paramilitary activity, as defined in ORS 166.660.
(88) A violation of ORS 166.720.
(89) Prostitution, as defined in ORS 167.007.
(90) Promoting prostitution, as defined in ORS 167.012.
(91) Compelling prostitution, as defined in ORS 167.017.
(92) Exhibiting an obscene performance to a minor, as defined in ORS 167.075.
(93) Unlawful gambling in the second degree, as defined in ORS 167.122.
(94) Unlawful gambling in the first degree, as defined in ORS 167.127.
(95) Possession of gambling records in the second degree, as defined in ORS 167.132.
(96) Possession of gambling records in the first degree, as defined in ORS 167.137.
(97) Possession of a gambling device, as defined in ORS 167.147.
(98) Possession of a gray machine, as defined in ORS 167.164.
(99) Cheating, as defined in ORS 167.167.
(100) Tampering with drug records, as defined in ORS 167.212.
(101) A violation of ORS 167.262.
(102) Research and animal interference, as defined in ORS 167.312.
(103) Animal abuse in the first degree, as defined in ORS 167.320.
(104) Aggravated animal abuse in the first degree, as defined in ORS 167.322.
(105) Animal neglect in the first degree, as defined in ORS 167.330.
(106) Interfering with an assistance, a search and rescue or a therapy animal, as defined in ORS 167.352.
(107) Involvement in animal fighting, as defined in ORS 167.355.
(108) Dogfighting, as defined in ORS 167.365.
(109) Participation in dogfighting, as defined in ORS 167.370.
(110) Unauthorized use of a livestock animal, as defined in ORS 167.385.
(111) Interference with livestock production, as defined in ORS 167.388.
(112) A violation of ORS 167.390.
(113) A violation of ORS 471.410.
(114) Failure to report missing precursor substances, as defined in ORS 475.955.
(115) Illegally selling drug equipment, as defined in ORS 475.960.
(116) Providing false information on a precursor substances report, as defined in ORS 475.965.
(117) Unlawful delivery of an imitation controlled substance, as defined in ORS 475.991.
(118) A violation of ORS 475.992, if it is a felony or a Class A misdemeanor.
(119) A violation of ORS 475.993, if it is a felony or a Class A misdemeanor.
(120) A violation of ORS 475.994.
(121) A violation of ORS 475.995, if it is a felony or a Class A misdemeanor.
(122) A violation of ORS 475.999 (1)(a).
(123) Misuse of an identification card, as defined in ORS 807.430.
(124) Unlawful production of identification cards, licenses, permits, forms or camera cards, as defined in ORS 807.500.
(125) Transfer of documents for the purposes of misrepresentation, as defined in ORS 807.510.
(126) Using an invalid license, as defined in ORS 807.580.
(127) Permitting misuse of a license, as defined in ORS 807.590.
(128) Using another's license, as defined in ORS 807.600.
(129) Criminal driving while suspended or revoked, as defined in ORS 811.182, when it is a felony.
(130) Driving while under the influence of intoxicants, as defined in ORS 813.010, when it is a felony.
(131) Unlawful distribution of cigarettes, as defined in [section 3 of this 2001 Act] ORS 323.482.
(132) Terrorism, as defined in section 1 of this 2003 Act.[(132)]
(133) An attempt, conspiracy or solicitation to commit a crime in subsections (1) to [(131)] (132) of this section if the attempt, conspiracy or solicitation is a felony or a Class A misdemeanor.

You can search for any of these Oregon State laws at this site. Just think about it. Prostitutes are terrorists? Computer Hackers are terrorists? Animal Rights activists are terrorists? Or think about this: you innocently make a copy of CD for a friend and you label it yourself. You are a terrorist! Oregon isn't the only state considering terrorist definitions like this. Texas and New York are also considering similar legislature in their states. Can you see the comedians now: "You Might Be a Terrorist if"...that alone may make the comedians terrorists too!



Is Bush Headed for Disaster?

According to comments by Richard Lugar, the Senior Republican authority in foreign relations in Congress, Washington was in danger of creating “an incubator for terrorist cells and activity” unless it increased the scope and cost of its reconstruction efforts. Lugar also said, more troops, billions more dollars and a longer commitment were needed if the US were not to throw away the peace. Here are a couple more statements from Lugar:

    “I am concerned that the Bush Administration and Congress have not yet faced up to the true size of the task that lies ahead, or prepared the American people for it,” he said, writing in The Washington Post. Mr Bush should state clearly “that we are engaged in ‘nation-building’,” he said, a statement that would require the President to swallow one of his tenets of the 2000 election campaign.
    Mr Lugar also took a swipe at Mr Bush’s victory speech on the USS Abraham Lincoln earlier this month, delivered under a banner that read: “Mission Accomplished”. He said: “President Bush should make clear to one and all that he will declare ‘Mission Accomplished’ in Iraq not on the basis of our military victory or the date of our withdrawal, but on what kind of country we leave behind.”
    “I want to see evidence that the Administration is in this for the long haul to create a stable, democratic Iraq, and to acknowledge that this will place a significant burden on the American people,” Mr Lugar said. He referred to estimates that the reconstruction of Iraq may cost $100 billion, compared to the $2.5 billion approved by Congress so far.




It Was Powell's Story and He Is Sticking To It

It has been nine weeks since the war on Iraq began and for nine weeks the military has been looking for WMD. So far, nothing substantial has turned up. Two mobile facilities have been discovered, thoroughly checked, and no trace of biological or chemical matter has turned up. These are the mobile facilities that Powell described when he went before the UN on February 5th. He claimed that Iraq has used these mobile units to create chemical and biological agents, even after the Iraqis claimed that they had other uses for such vehicles. According to this ABC report, the Iraqis claimed that such mobile labs were used for food analysis for disease outbreaks, mobile field hospitals, a military field bakery, food and medicine refrigeration trucks, a mobile military morgue and mobile ice making trucks.

Powell still insists that he was right. He said, "I think we knew what we were saying when we went to the United Nations on the 5th of February, and I was pleased to be the one to present the case."

However, Powell acknowledged there was still some concern about how much the trailers proved.

"Although you can't find actual germs on them, they have been clean and we don't know whether they have been used for that purpose or not, they were certainly designed and constructed for that purpose," he said.

I guess Powell, along with the rest of the Bush Administration, doesn't believe in sufficient evidence. "No evidence, no crime." Isn't that the way it used to work? In their world of pre-emption, the mere fact that these mobile units exist is enough evidence for them to say that the crime of chemical and biological weapons production occured.



Even the Iraqis Are Suspecious

The UN Security Council voted 14-0, with Syria being absent (their own little way of protesting), to allow the UN sanctions against Iraq to be lifted. This should be a wonderful thing for the Iraqi people. Right? Then why aren't the Iraqi people celebrating in the streets? In their own words, they tell why:

    "Before the U.S. invasion, Washington did not want to lift the sanctions, now they are pressing for lifting them. What is this game all about?" asked Waleed Yaser, a street vendor.
    "Because America wants to control Iraq's wealth," replied his brother Ali.
    "We don't need sanctions to be lifted, we need peace, security and stability to be maintained," Ali Abdullah, 58, a retired civil servant told Reuters.




The Brits Are Coming to Save the Day

According to this story in the British Mirror, Britain is sending 5,500 British Paras (trained peace-keepers) to Baghdad to save the American troops who are still struggling to secure Baghdad:

    One senior British defence source said last night: "We have three months at best to get this right. It is absolutely crucial the people of Baghdad can be persuaded we are there to help them.
    "Otherwise, the whole point of the operation could totally collapse and we could have a new war on our hands against the Iraqi people we came to liberate.
    "The American troops in Baghdad are not doing what is necessary. They are tired, they want to go home and they do not have the training for the job that needs to be done.
    "After 30 years of being in Northern Ireland, as well as the Balkans, Sierra Leone and Afghanistan, we know we have those skills and have offered our help."




Didn't Bush Declare Victory In Iraq?

I could have sworn when Bush made that trip to the Lincoln that he declared victory over Iraq. And now, according to this report from the KR Washington Bureau, Paul Wolfowitz has told Congress American forces in Iraq still face "several tens of thousands" of fighters who are sufficiently armed and organized to be considered "something close to light infantry."

Ladies and Gentlemen, the war in Iraq is far from over. The same thing that happened in Afghanistan is happening in Iraq. Bush is declaring victory while massive fighting is still occuring and setting up puppet governments that will need round the clock military protection from opposition forces. These are *not* victories, these are on-going military conflicts that are still risking the lives of our men and women in uniform. Wolfowitz said, U.S. troops had experienced 50 hostile incidents in the previous two weeks (since Bush declared victory over Iraq), in which one soldier was killed and 17 were hurt. (parenthesis is mine ~Ravyne~)



The US PATRIOT Act Under Fire

According to this report, Some 107 communities in 24 states representing 11.3 million people have now passed resolutions opposing the federal USA Patriot Act. Alaska is expected to join Hawaii in opposing the Patriot Act, as is the city of Baltimore. This could be the beginnings of unexpected political opposition to the Bush re-election campaign, especially since the opposition now includes an important sector of the conservative movement itself. Such entities as the Eagle Forum and American Conservative Union are speaking out strongly against the act as a violation of civil liberties and have joined with the ACLU and other liberal groups in a coalition to fight the act.

With opposition coming from both the left and the right, is it possible that the US PATRIOT Act could get appealed? We can only hope. It still ticks me off that it was passed on the wake of September 11th without one single member of Congress even reading the bill because it wasn't yet complete. Maybe this will teach our lawmakers not to approve things without effectively reading and researching them. But I doubt it.



Another Key Player in Bush's Administration Goes Down

First Ari Fleisher, then Christie Witman, and now, the man responsible for military operations in Iraq, General Tommy Franks has decided to retire. Franks said, "My wife reminds me frequently how long I've worn it," he continued. "She reminds me that I told her on the day we were married I was going to get out of the United States military. I remind her that some day I am going to." Oh, I get it now! They all want to go home to their families! Anyone else see a pattern here?

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~Did You Miss These?~

Just a Reminder - Tuesday, Nov. 04, 2003
Ravyne Is Moving - Friday, Oct. 17, 2003
The Mission - Sunday, Oct. 12, 2003
Siege Heil - Thursday, Oct. 09, 2003
Litany Of Lies - Wednesday, Oct. 08, 2003
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