Tuesday, May 02, 2006

FBI is watching you

Who says J. Edgar Hoover is dead? It is not without good reason that his disgraced name remains the same as that of the building that houses the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which is making itself quite busy these days snooping -- without the need of a court warrant -- on Americans. Dan Eggen writes in the The Washington Post:

FBI Sought Data on Thousands in '05

The FBI sought personal information on thousands of Americans last year from banks, Internet service providers and other companies without having to seek approval from a court, according to new data released by the Justice Department.

In a report to the top leaders of both parties in the House, the department disclosed that the FBI had issued more than 9,200 "national security letters," or NSLs, seeking detailed information about more than 3,500 U.S. citizens or legal residents in 2005.
If you think this is about catching bin Laden, please think again, dear reader. It saddens your écrivaine to remind her devotees that if the administration wanted bin Laden so badly, they wouldn't have let him get out of Tora Bora alive. And they wouldn't have used the head of Pakistan's intelligence operation as an "emissary" to the Taliban in the days following 9-11 -- ostensibly to plead for the the extradition of bin Laden -- knowing full well that he would tip off his Taliban friends as to the nature of the U.S. "plan" for bin Laden's capture. And that's exactly what happened.

Ah, but your Webwench digresses. So let her digress again, for it seems that while the FBI -- an agency of the executive branch -- has been demanding the library records of Americans, the Bush administration was outing Valerie Plame even as she monitored Iran's WMD program. Your cybertrix learned this from John Aravosis at Americablog, and you can, too.

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J. Scales does it again

Soon to dominate all media, the incomparable J. Scales is newly published in the anthology, Growing Up Girl by Michelle Sewell. In case you thought J. to be merely a songwriter, singer, bass player, drummer and composer of beats, think again. Her poem, "a letter to God (while thinking about my hair)," provoked a strong response from the crowd assembled at Howard University last Friday for the release-party reading.

Oh, and on a completely different matter, you surely saw her in the Sunday Source section of the Washington Post.

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Deflating the inflation myth

Kudos to your blogstress's foxy friend, Glenn Kellis, for reminding us that, compared to the chimera that is our economy, war, pestilence and the de-facto suspension of the Constitution are mere nuisances. No, your cybertrix is not being ironic -- c'est vrai, mes amis, c'est vrai. For when this baby blows -- and sooner or later she must (the economy that, is -- not your Webwench), war, pestilence and oppression will be compounded manifold on a global scale. And though, here in the world's only superpower, we like to think we stand apart, we are, sad to say, actually part of the rest of le monde.

Over at his Ob:Blog, Kellis offers a novel approach to dieting:

Introducing the Core Rate Diet (tm)! It's so simple, too: Just do what the government does to the inflation numbers, only in this instance we're dealing with another kind of inflation. Body inflation.
Intrigued? Click here to read the rest.

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Immigration in the
breakaway republic

"Who's this, Dad?" asked your blogstress, as she sifted through a pile of ancient family photos.

"Lemme see now," he replied, adjusting his glasses and taking the formal, 1920s studio shot in hand. "Oh, that's my grandfather and my Uncle Joe."

Grand-Grandpa was a small, sturdy-looking man of indeterminate ethnic heritage who arrived in the U.S. from Poland in the late 19th century.

Uncle Joe became a ward-heeler for the Democratic Party on the South Side of Chicago.

And there, mes amis, you have the secret of why Republicans so fear immigrants.

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