Category Archives: Political Reasons

Justice Alito Causes Controversy During Obama’s State Of The Union Address!

Justice Alito caused a silent disturbance that has become a loud controversy. He grimaced when President Obama admonished a Supreme Court decision during his State Of The Union address.

President Obama was upset because the Supreme Court wants to allow corporations to support the candidate of their choice.Justice Alito mouthed the words “not true” after President Obama expressed his fear that this would allow “special interests — including foreign corporations — to spend without limit in our elections.

Let’s just abandon all protocol,guys!

Since Alito muttered his disent,a debate has risen over whether President Obama said something that was “not true.” Some folks beg to differ with Justice Alito. They say that President Obama’s assertion is true.

Here’s more from The Huffington Post:

“Conservatives and progressives may argue this morning about whether President Obama should have criticized the Court and about the severity of Justice Alito’s breach of protocol, but Justice Alito faces a bigger problem: Obama’s comment is true.

In fact, Obama’s carefully-phrased comment to the justices highlights two critical aspects of the majority’s decision in Citizens United v. FEC, both of which constitute dangerous and revolutionary shifts in long-settled law:

  1. The Court ruled that the First Amendment makes no distinction among speakers — that the identity of a speaker makes no difference for purposes of government regulation of speech. As Justice Stevens pointed out in his dissenting opinion, this logic leads to some remarkable conclusions: “Such an assumption would have accorded the propaganda broadcasts to our troops by ‘Tokyo Rose’ during World War II the same protection as speech by Allied commanders.” Stevens also clearly explained that the majority’s logic “would appear to afford the same protection to multinational corporations controlled by foreigners as to individual Americans.” This is truly an unprecedented reading of the Bill of the Rights that could have consequences that reach even beyond campaign finance law. By eliminating any distinction among speakers, which, as Obama noted, has been recognized for at least a century, the Court hinted that any regulation that distinguishes between corporations and individuals may be problematic — raising the question of what other rights currently reserved for citizens the Court might soon extend to corporations. As Stevens noted in his dissent, under the majority’s logic, “it may be a First Amendment problem that corporations are not permitted to vote, given that voting is, among other things, a form of speech.”(End of Excerpt) Read the rest here.

And to make matters worse,it appears that Justice Alito may be holding a grudge against Obama. President Obama was one of the Senate Democrats who voted against his confirmation. Here’s more on that from Politics Daily:

“President-Elect Barack Obama strolled over to the Supreme Court yesterday to pay a visit to the Justices who will be scrutinizing his legislation and executive orders over the next four years. It was supposed to be a friendly visit, initiated by Chief Justice John Roberts, who will swear Obama into office next Tuesday.

But then one bad apple had to go and ruin it.

Wednesday’s meeting was described as a relaxed, get-acquainted session. It included Roberts, seven associate justices and Vice President-elect Joe Biden.

The absence of Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr., who was at the court Wednesday morning for arguments in two cases, was a mystery. He has, however, voiced lingering anger over Senate Democrats, including Obama and Biden, who voted against his confirmation three years ago. When walking on Capitol Hill, Alito has said, he crosses to the far side of the street whenever he nears the Senate Office Building.

What gives, Justice Alito? Are you really still mad at Barack and Joe for trying to Bork you? After all, they both voted against Roberts, too, and he seems able to forgive and forget.”(End of Excerpt) Read the rest here.

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We Have Separation Of Church And State In America!

One American principle that I really love is that we separate  church and state.Politics are not supposed to be mixed with religion.But,some folks just have trouble adhering to that fact.

Take Mayor Osby Davis of Vallejo,CA for instance.He had to issue a formal apology for the aspersions he cast on his gay constituents.The NY Times carried an article that quoted him as saying that “they’re committing sin and that sin will keep them out of heaven.”

Wow! And he is a Christian attorney.Well,he should judge not,lest he be judged.Because,in the end,we are all sinners.No man is free of all sin.

Here’s more from The Oakland Tribune:

“At least one person said he plans to call for Davis’ resignation or recall while another wants him to be censured.

Davis said Tuesday he wants the community to pull together and move forward during difficult times.

“It should go without saying, and is certainly obvious to all who know me, that my conduct, actions and decisions have demonstrated my conviction for fairness for all people and my love for this city,” Davis wrote.

Sherrie Connelly, a hospital chaplain and former Human Relations commissioner, said she was confused by Davis’ comments, but was reasonably certain Davis didn’t intend to “cause the kind of brouhaha” that was raised.

“I believe the mayor’s comments stir the soup in Vallejo in a very unfavorable way,” said Connelly, a self-described straight, 65-year-old woman.

As elected officials, we have a responsibility to serve the entire community, not just the ones who believe as we do.”

Former planning commissioner and gay activist Charles Legalos called for action against Davis.

“I want to get an item on the City Council agenda to censure him,” Legalos said.

“His comments were completely out of line. They have no place coming from a city official.”

Legalos also expressed concern over the separation of church and state issue as it relates to the city of God remark.

“Separation of church and state is a fundamental tenet of our government, and he violated it,” Legalos said.

Davis said his prepared statement was not designed to defend his beliefs. He added that he did not feel his beliefs related to the intent of the New York Times column.

I did not intend to use my position as mayor to espouse my beliefs,” Davis said. “I will not use my position as mayor to espouse my personal beliefs. My personal beliefs are mine and mine alone — and they will remain mine from this point on.”

Former school board candidate and openly gay priest Lou Bordisso, also quoted in the Times column, said remarks like Davis’ can lead to negative consequences.

Bordisso said Monday he’s planning a rally and news conference at 6:15 p.m. Dec. 1 in front of City Hall before the regular City Council meeting.

“There’s a lot of anger out there and people need a forum in which to express their anger and frustration,” Bordisso said.

Others expanded on Bordisso’s apprehensions.

I believe the main point is the image of Vallejo going out to the world — this mixing politics with religion,” said Max Green, a self-described politically aware Vallejo resident. ”

(Davis) is supposed to be the mayor of everyone, not just those who believe as he does.” And besides, Legalos said, Vallejo doesn’t need more negative attention.

“It’s discouraging,” he said. “The city has gained notoriety in terms of crime, bankruptcy, bad management, and to add this to it … to now be known as a city with a bigoted mayor. …” (End of Excerpt) Read the entire article here.

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Muammar al-Gaddafi Is The Whacked-Out Leader Of Libya!

Muammar al-Gaddafi went on a bitch fest today. He bitched about everything from his jet lag to the way the United Nations handles its business.Gaddafi had a lot of stuff that he just had to get off his chest!

The Libyan leader also let it be known that he considers President Obama to be a son of Africa because of his Kenyan descent.He seemed to be trying to forge a kinship between himself & the leader of the free world. As if !

I’m sure that President Obama didn’t appreciate or want his warm praises.The last thing that he wants is to be associated in any way with a dictator who said that Obama should be the president forever.Especially when you’ve got some fruitcakes out there comparing Obama to tyrants & dictators. I’m sure that yet another Obama conspiracy theory is being formed at this very moment.

The poor guy who had to translate this long rant got tired out & had to be relieved of his duties.I just feel sorry for the people who have to call Muammar al-Gaddafi their leader for the past 40 years.What a loon!

And if I were a Bedford resident,I’d be outraged that this terrorist-backer had his tent pitched on a piece of land that is owned by Donald Trump.I just hope that the “Trumpster” wouldn’t stoop this low for cash.

Here’s more on that from The AP:

“Did The Donald and the dictator made a backdoor deal? If so, the plan to pitch a tent in this suburb for Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi went south pretty fast. Maybe someone should be fired.

A tent erected by the Libyan government on Donald Trump’s estate in Bedford was dismantled Wednesday, and both Trump and the Secret Service said Gadhafi wasn’t coming.

For Gadhafi, it was just another failed attempt to find a place to spend time during the UN General Assembly — after his requests for space in Central Park, Englewood, N.J., and Manhattan’s Upper East Side were all rejected.

Long unpopular in America, the Libyan leader is now particularly unwelcome after he gave an effusive welcome-home reception for Abdel Baset al-Megrahi, the Libyan convicted of the bombing Pan Am Flight 103. Al-Megrahi was recently freed from prison because he’s dying of prostate cancer.

For Trump, questions persisted.

Did he know he might be handing over the use of his lush, 213-acre Seven Springs estate to Gadhafi? Or was the mogul unwittingly renting some upscale digs on his suburban lawn 33 miles north of the United Nations?”(End of Excerpt) Read the rest here.

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I Hope That Congress Rebukes Rep. Joe Wilson!!!!

Rep. Joe Wilson needs to be publicly reprimanded for disrespecting the President of the United States of America! This is not the British Parliament!!!! I’m glad Congress is drafting a Resolution of Disapproval.Here in America,we respect the leader of the free world!At least until we can prove that he lied to us like George Bush did!!!

Rep. Joe Wilson should have practiced the same decorum that he did when George Bush was the president.Because Rep. Joe Wilson never made a peep about the lie that turned into the war in Iraq.In fact,all three of his sons have fought in a war that sprung from lies about weapons of mass destruction.

Why is he so vocal now?!!Where were the truth seekers when we really needed them?!! Rep. Joe Wilson & the rest of his cohorts should have been angry as hell at President George Bush.Instead,they have embraced every falsehood that the Bush administration told.

The neoconservative didn’t care about sending his countrymen off to die in a war that should not have taken place.Why was an obvious untruth accepted by Rep. Joe Wilson? Because a member of his own party told it.

Is Rep. Joe Wilson’s very public disdain for this president due to his politics or is it because he’s black? Since he is a neoconservative,I have to wonder what really motivated Wilson to lose all sense of decorum.

Maybe he’s one of those white folks that view our president as an uppity black man who needs to be put in his place.After all,he is a member of the Sons Of Confederate Veterans.Need I say more?

I’ll let Prime Buzz tell you more:

Now, add this to the fact that Joe Wilson, as a state legislator, was one of only seven Republicans to go against their own party and vote to keep the Dixie Rebel flag flying over the South Carolina capitol:

The flag came down that year after Republicans in both houses went for a compromise that would put it on Statehouse grounds at the Confederate Soldier’s monument. The “Magnificent Seven” of Senators who voted to keep the flag up included current Congressman Joe Wilson

A clearer picture of why this congressman might so virulently breach protocol and loudly interrupt an African-American president’s speech to Congress by calling him a liar does start to emerge, doesn’t it?

So inquiring minds want to know:

Is Joe Wilson still a member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans?

If so, does he condone the activities of the “Lunatic” faction that now controls the SCV?

Does Joe Wilson consider the Republican Party “the Party of Lincoln”?

Does Joe Wilson support secession?” (End of Excerpt) Read the entire post here.

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Lynn Sweet Gets Attacked For Asking President Obama About Professor Gates!

Some folks are pretty teed off about President Obama’s response to the race relations question that a reporter posed during last night’s presidential conference.Lynn Sweet asked Obama what he thought about the arrest of the very distinguished Professor Henry Louis Gates at his home & race relations in America.

After a very lengthy reply,President Obama said that even though he didn’t know the facts “the Cambridge police acted stupidly in arresting somebody when there was already proof that they were in their own home.

The word “stupidly” is causing a lot of controversy & it is the topic of many discussions today.But,that is not all people are talking about.There are many who feel that the question should never have been asked in the first place.Now,both Lynn Sweet & President Obama are the subject of ire.

Here’s some interesting comments to the transcript that Lynn Sweet posted on Chicago Sun-Times:

By Sandra Kay on July 22, 2009 9:46 PM :What an absolutely stupid question you asked. Of all the issues swirling around this administration, you ask the softball of the night.You’ve just demonstrated exactly what is wrong with the obama-media and why true journalism died for good in 2008.Your publication should be ashamed they sent you.

By John O’Holleran on July 22, 2009 10:20 PMMs: Sweet I had more respect for you than you demonstrated this evening. You went to a news conference on the future of health care in this country and apparently slept through it. Your question at this evenings news conference was intended to divert the spot light from the important issues of the topic of the conference and gain you a brief moment on the national stage. Your question was not relevant to the discussion of the future of health care in this nation. It was obviously self serving, intended to hijack and misdirect the discussion, thus was an obvious effort to make you the focal point of the news conference by playing to a ‘race card’ issue which was not the intent of the news conference. You proved you are not a journalist interested in contributing to the national dialog on important issues, but rather just another hack who looks for the deception and distractions that effectively undermines the intelligent discussion of critical issues and promotes your career.The issue of race relations in this country is an ongoing concern and worthy of deep education and discussion. It was not, however, the issue of the news conference and most journalists understood that point. Keep your focus on the topic at hand and not on what will give YOU the best byline.

By Nancy Millman on July 22, 2009 11:49 PM: Great question, Lynn!!! AND, you look fabulous! He spoke the truth to you, and the country is SO fortunate!!! Your old pal and colleague, N.M.

By jimmy rock on July 23, 2009 12:08 AMI:watched & I’m wondering y was it so important for to ask that question it had nothing to do with healthcare, if your going to ask a question that has nothing to do with the subject being discussed than don’t you think it should have been about OUR soldiers in Afghanian & how were doing their.”(End of Excerpt) Read the transcript & more comments on it here.

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Norm Coleman Finally Concedes To Al Franken!

Norm Coleman is no longer a sore loser.His tireless fight to remain a Minnesota senator has finally reached its duration.Norm Coleman   acknowledged Al Franken’s win.Since Norm Coleman has conceded,Al Franken will now take his rightful place in the Senate.And the Democrats will get the 60 seats they need to bypass any Republican filibusters.

Here’s more from USA Today:

“Republican Norm Coleman is addressing supporters in St. Paul following a Minnesota Supreme Court decision today that found Democrat Al Franken has won the election. The USA TODAY story is here.

“I join all Minnesotans in congratulating our newest United States senator, Al Franken,” Coleman said. “I have never believed that my service is irreplaceable. We have reached the point where further litigation damages the unity of our state, which is also fundamental. In these tough times, we all need to focus on the future. And the future today is we have a new United States senator.”

Update 4:09 p.m. ET: Coleman says he had a “personal and very positive discussion” with Franken today. Regarding whether he will run for governor of Minnesota, Coleman said: “I haven’t made a decision yet about the future…We’ll talk about the future in short order.” (End of Excerpt)Read the rest here.

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Where In The Heck Is The Governor Of South Carolina?

Governor Mark Sanford has reportedly gone missing.His wife is not really sure where he is,but she’s not worried about it.She said maybe he went somewhere to write something.

Well…okay. But,why all of the secrecy? His staff didn’t even know where he was.Plus,he skipped out on his kids on Father’s Day.

What an insensitive,selfish jerk! Unless his mental state is in terrible condition,there is no excuse for not even letting your wife & kids know where you are.

What kind of a governor & family man is he? Both the state of South Carolina & his wife ought to tell Mark Sanford to take a permanent hike!

Here’s more on this bizarre story from Politico:

“In a new twist to an already-bizarre episode, South Carolina’s lieutenant governor said Monday night that neither he nor Gov. Mark Sanford’s staff know where the governor is and that Sanford’s office refused his demand to talk to his fellow Republican.

Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer, who was elected separately from Sanford, issued a statement to POLITICO after a day of frenzied national speculation about the governor’s whereabouts.

Bauer said he called Sanford’s office Monday and requested an “immediate phone conversation with the governor.”

“That request was denied because the governor’s chief of staff does not know where the governor is, and has not communicated with the governor since he left South Carolina last Thursday,” Bauer said.

I cannot take lightly that his staff has not had communication with him for more than four days, and that no one, including his own family, knows his whereabouts.”

But Sanford spokesman Joel Sawyer issued a statement late Monday night saying that the governor was “hiking along the Appalachian Trail,” the first word on Sanford’s location since he was seen departing the state capital on Thursday.” Read the rest here.

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Former Republican Senator Arlen Specter:”My Political Philosphy Is More In Line With The Democrats!”

Senator Arlen Specter has dropped a bombshell todayThe veteran Republican is switching political parties because he says that his beliefs line up more with the Democrats. Others are saying that this whole move is all about self-preservation. Many also believe that Sen. Specter would have lost the GOP primary.

Whatever the reason,the Democrats are happy to have him.Because if Al Franken gets his Senate seat,then the Democrats will have the 60 seats that they need to control the Senate! Here’s more from cbs5.com:

Saying he now finds his “political philosophy more in line with Democrats than Republicans,” Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter, now a Republican, has announced that he will run for reelection as a Democrat in 2010.

Specter, a 79-yar-old fifth-term senator, wrote in a statement that he has been a Republican since 1966 and was elected in 1980 “as part of the Reagan Big Tent.” Since then, however, “the Republican Party has moved far to the right.”

He suggested his support for the economic stimulus package ultimately led to the decision.

“It has become clear to me that the stimulus vote caused a schism which makes our differences irreconcilable,” he wrote. Specter said he knew his support for the bill would not be popular in the Party but that he saw the bill “as necessary to lessen the risk of a far more serious recession than we are now experiencing.”

The Democrats now hold 58 Senate seats, and are likely to have 59 with the seating of Minnesota Democrat Al Franken, which is most likely to take place in June. Specter’s vote would give the party the 60 votes it needs to avoid a Republican filibuster and pass legislation without the support of the minority party.

Specter plans to hold a news conference later today to explain he will be switching parties and if and when he will begin caucusing with the Democrats.

He vowed, however, that his “change in party affiliation does not mean that I will be a party-line voter any more for the Democrats that I have been for the Republicans.”

“Unlike Senator Jeffords’ switch which changed party control, I will not be an automatic 60th vote for cloture,” he said. “For example, my position on Employees Free Choice (Card Check) will not change.” (Specter opposes the union- and Democrat-backed bill.)

Specter had been facing a tough GOP primary fight – a January poll found that he was trailing Republican Congressman Pat Toomey 41 percent to 27 percent among primary voters in the state. The fact that the state’s GOP primary is closed meant that the relatively moderate Specter could not depend on the support of independents or moderates to get him past Toomey.

The Associated Press, citing a senior White House official, reports that President Obama was handed a note during his daily economic briefing this morning announcing Specter’s plans to switch parties. The president reportedly called Specter at 10:32 a.m. ET and said “you have my full support,” adding that the Democratic Party is “thrilled to have you.”(End of Excerpt) Read the rest here.

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Meghan McCain To “The New Faces Of The Gop”:”You Had Your 8 Yrs, Now Go Away!”Plus,My Thoughts On Torture!!!

Meghan McCain is so honest about what she feels is wrong with the “right” that some conservatives are questioning her political leanings.Is Meghan McCain really a conservative or a secret liberal? Others feel that Meghan McCain is suggesting that the GOP needs to morph into a party that resembles the Democratic party.Here’s a Republican viewpoint from Dayton Daily News:

Sen. John McCain’s daughter and his presidential campaign manager think they’ve figured out why McCain lost the 2008 election and what Republicans must do to win in the future: They need to be more like Democrats.

Steve Schmidt and Meghan McCain delivered their analyses in separate speeches to the Log Cabin Republicans, whose stated mission “is to work within the Republican Party to advocate equal rights for all Americans, including gays and lesbians.”

Schmidt said he believes that a political party should not take or argue a position on same-sex marriage based on religious grounds. “If you put public policy to a religious test,” he said, “you risk becoming a religious party, and in a free country, a political party cannot remain viable in the long term if it is seen as sectarian.” (End of Excerpt) Read the rest here.

And here’s another conservative from U.S. News that can’t find anything “right” about Ms. McCain :

“The political issues on which Meghan McCain urges moderation are some of the very issues that the GOP used successfully to realign the electorate in the 1980s and 1990s and which played a major role in winning the White House for George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004.

Ms. McCain, for example, urges acceptance of gay marriage—as now does McCain campaign manager Steve Schmidt. But they forget that it was state-based efforts in defense of the traditional definition of marriage that helped Bush beat Sen. John F. Kerry of Massachusetts in 2004. And that there has been no place, at least none that I can find, where the pro-gay marriage position has triumphed when put to a vote of the people.

In fact, it was just a few years ago, after the Vermont legislature voted to approve civil unions, that the GOP took over the state House of Representatives in the electoral backlash. And I expect to see a similar outcome after its approval of gay marriage over a gubernatorial veto earlier this month.

I think we’re seeing a war brewing in the Republican Party, but it is not between us and Democrats,” Ms. McCain told the Log Cabin Republican Convention. “It is not between us and liberals. It is between the future and the past.”

She’s welcome to try, but I think the real issue is for the party to return to its Reaganite, limited-government roots. And the close to 1 million, by some estimates, people who turned out for last Wednesday’s national tax day tea parties seem to agree. They were quite clear they believe they are being taxed, spent, regulated, and borrowed to death by the federal government.

And so my advice to Ms. McCain, and to those folks who think she might be right, is to focus on issues that unite us, like taxes and spending, not those that divide us, and then try to prove you know how to win an election or two before telling everyone else what their agendas should be.”(End of Excerpt) Read the rest here.

Whew! Meghan McCain is really getting under the skin of a whole lot of conservatives.The highly opinionated blonde has already said that “old school republicans are scared shitless“! Whatever it is,they aren’t wasting anytime responding to the change that Meghan McCain says the GOP desperately needs.But,I’m sure that Meghan McCain will only tell her critics to “kiss her fat ass“! Because that’s what she told Laura Ingraham to do when Meghan appeared on The View. Here’s more from the NY Daily News:

“As far as I’m concerned with what’s going on with Laura Ingraham, on my end, it’s over,” McCain told King. “There are nine million women in this country suffering from eating disorders. And I’m not going to be bullied around about my weight and what kind of standards I’m not fitting.”

In the past few weeks since she started her career as a political columnist, McCain has angered conservatives – especially after she blasted pundit Ann Coulter, calling the author, “offensive, radical, insulting, and confusing all at the same time.” Ingraham had poked fun of McCain’s weight on her radio show, then back-peddled on an interview with Fox News a few days later.

Meghan McCain’s “progressive” – code for liberal in the eyes of many fellow Republicans – views on supporting gay marriage have also made her controversial among her party’s base.

“I have taken heat, but in fairness to me, I am a different generation than the people that are giving me heat,” McCain told King. “I’m 24 years old. I’m not in my 40s, I’m not in my 50s and older.”

But perhaps her most controversial view as far as Republicans are concerned is her support for Obama to succeed as president.

“He’s our president and when the election was over and when President Obama won, all negative feelings were gone,” McCain said on the CNN show. “I support the president.” (End of Excerpt) Read the rest here.

Meghan McCain is a hell of a good sport for supporting the man who beat her father in the presidential race. But,if she understands the importance of supporting the president of the United States of America,then what the hell is wrong with those “patriots” who have been working to undermine President Obama since he took office?

Give him the same chance that I gave George W. Bush when he allegedly beat Al Gore. Even though there were some serious questions about whether George Bush really won. I supported George Bush because he was my president. We gave him a chance to make mistakes for 8 yrs. And we are continuing to find out just how horrific some of those errors were.

Now,it’s time for those who were in power then,like Dick Cheney,to support the president. And to “go away” like George Bush has. After all the chaos that took place under the Bush administration,I don’t lend much credence to anything that Dick Cheney has to say anyway.

Where was the honesty & transparency at when Bush & Cheney were in charge of serving the American people & doing what was in the country’s best interest? I mean,the law was redefined so that torture could be permitted. For all of those who want to protect American values,this ought to be of great concern to every American.

How much executive power are we willing to give a president? The Bush administration’s actions pale in comparison to all of the arguments that have been made about President Obama.

If you love your country,you should be outraged. But,if it’s all about which party you’ve pledged allegiance to,then you should be feeling defensive.Unfortunately,I’m hearing a whole lot of defense instead of outrage from the right. And that is wrong!

We do not torture in America. And that is what those “harsh interrogation methods” amounted to.You can call it what you want,but it is what it is! This is supposed to be a civilized society,remember?

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America & Japan Are Concerned About North Korea’s Rocket Launch!

North Korea is a freakin’ nuisance to more than just America. Both Japan & South Korea find their neighbor to be very worrisome as well.Although the rocket launch was deemed a military failure,it has helped North Korea politically.Here’s more on what analysts say about North Korea’s rocket launch,as reported by The Associated Press:

“U.S. and South Korean officials said the entire rocket, including whatever payload it carried, ended up in the ocean. South Korea said the second stage splashed down about 1,900 miles (3,100 kilometers) from the launch site.That is double the distance a North Korean rocket managed in 1998 and far better than a 2006 launch of a missile that fizzled 42 seconds after liftoff.

Japan, Guam, the Philippines, Mongolia and parts of China are now within range, but Anchorage, Alaska, is roughly 3,500 miles (6,000 kilometers) from the launch site. Daniel Pinkston, a Seoul-based analyst for the International Crisis Group, said the apparent failure of the rocket’s third stage to separate properly from the second stage raised questions about the reliability of the technology.

“They’re still a long ways off” from being able to successfully target and strike the United States, he said. It also is unclear whether the North has been able to miniaturize its warheads enough to load onto a rocket, he said.But John Bolton, a former U.S. ambassador to the U.N. and ex-U.S. undersecretary of state in charge of the North Korean nuclear dossier, said the launch was still cause for concern.

“This is far from a failure. Japan is now clearly in range, and unless you’re willing to kiss Japan goodbye, you have to be worried by this test,” he told The Associated Press.

Kim Tae-woo, an analyst at Seoul’s state-run Korea Institute for Defense Analyses, said the launch raises the stakes at the stalled six-nation talks aimed at persuading the North to give up its nuclear weapons program in exchange for aid and other concessions.Pyongyang now can seek more help because it has more to bargain away, Kim said.And, he added, “North Korea is playing a game of trying to manipulate the U.S. by getting it within range, which is the so-called pressure card.

North Korea, one of the world’s poorest countries, is in desperate need of outside aid. It has reportedly been selling missile parts and technology to whoever has the cash to pay for it.”(End of Excerpt) Read the entire article here.

Here’s a little history of North Korea Missiles from The Wisconsin Project:

1969-70: North Korea obtains FROG-5 and FROG-7A missiles from the Soviet Union.

1976: Egypt sends Soviet Scud-B missiles to North Korea.

1984: North Korea successfully tests its first reverse-engineered Scud-B missile.

1984: An Iranian businessman and a Soviet emigre are indicted in New York for conspiring to smuggle U.S. missile guidance components to North Korea.

1985: Iran agrees to finance the development of North Korean Scud missiles in exchange for Scud-B technology and an option to buy the missiles when they become available.

1987: Iran and North Korea sign a $500 million arms deal that includes the purchase of 90 to 100 Scud-Bs by Tehran.

1987-88: North Korea delivers approximately 100 Scud-B missiles to Iran.

1989: Two Japanese companies reportedly ship spectrum analyzers to North Korea, which can be used to improve missile accuracy.

1990: North Korea successfully tests a Scud-C missile, hitting targets off North Korea’s eastern coast from a base in the Kangwon Province; Iran reportedly tests what U.S. intelligence identifies as a North Korean version of the Scud-C.

1991-92: North Korea delivers an estimated 24 Scud-Cs and 20 mobile launchers to Syria, and ships additional Scuds to Syria through Iran.

1992: Russia reportedly prevents some 60 Russian rocket scientists from going to North Korea.

1992: The U.S. Department of State sanctions entities in North Korea, Iran and Syria for “missile technology proliferation activities.”

1993: North Korea successfully tests the Nodong missile to a range of about 500km.

1995: According to comments by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Iran has received four Scud TELs from North Korea.

1996: The United States and North Korea begin bilateral talks on how to curb North Korea’s missile exports and freeze its missile development.

1996: Taiwanese Customs officials reportedly seize 200 barrels (15 tons) of ammonium perchlorate on a North Korean freighter bound for Pakistan’s SUPARCO (Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission).”(End of Excerpt) Read the rest here.

Is it any wonder that China & Russia does not want North Korea to be sanctioned right now? I think not! Here’s what defectors from North Korea said about sanctions from a 2003 NY Times article:

“Six months after escaping from North Korea, she sat in the office of a human  rights group here, happily wearing a gray wool jacket, with a stylized American flag patch on the left arm and, on the back in large black script: New York Yankees.

The Kim family’s Communist dynasty – founded by Kim Il Sung and
continued by his son, Kim Jong Il – has ruled North Korea for the last half
century by maintaining what may be the world’s tightest monopoly on
information about the outside world. That grip will loosen, defectors say,
when North Koreans learn such basic facts as their rank as Northeast Asia’s  poorest nation
. Per capita income in South Korea is 13 times the level in North Korea.

Military pressure, the defectors warned, will have little effect on one of the
most militarized societies in the world
. In the mid-1990’s, during a famine,
Ms. Lee recalled, “they had this slogan: `Without the candy bowls, you can still live; but without the bullets, you cannot survive.’ ”

But behind the fire-breathing rhetoric, “the North Korean Army is in
shambles,” she added.

“The North Korean military elites are skimming from their budgets, cutting
down the average ration for soldiers,” said Ms. Lee, whose husband served in the military. “The soldiers have become very undisciplined. They steal piglets.”

Economic sanctions, if applied by China, North Korea’s largest trading
partner, might force Kim Jong Il to mothball his nuclear bomb projects, said the defectors, who all escaped through China
. But according to a report released last week by South Korea’s National Statistical Office, only 14 percent of North Korea’s limping economy depended on foreign trade in 2000, compared with 69 percent in South Korea.

When China and Russia stop giving aid, North Korea is bound to halt its
nuclear weapons program,” said Ma Young Ae, 39, a former
counterintelligence agent
who now runs a restaurant here with her new South  Korean husband.

Most of the food in Pyongyang is from China,” she said, referring to North  Korea’s capital. “The best way to stop the nuclear program is to stop the aid.” (End of Excerpt) Read the rest here.

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