Friday, August 7, 2009

Hope and Change: What are the Priorities?

Five U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan 

Afghan roadside bomb is deadliest attack in '09

Wednesday, February 25th 2009, 2:48 AM

Five U.S. soldiers were killed and three wounded in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan Tuesday.

Four soldiers died in southern Afghanistan after their vehicle hit a roadside bomb - the deadliest attack on American forces there this year, military officials said.

An Afghan civilian working with the soldiers was also killed.

In Iraq, two thugs wearing cop uniforms opened fired at a police station in the northern city of Mosul, killing one soldier and wounding three others. Their Iraqi interpreter was also shot dead.

The Defense Department released the names of the three soldiers who were killed in Iraq on Monday.

One of the fallen soldiers was Cpl. Michael Mayne, 21, of upstate Burlington Flats.

He and two other soldiers were killed in a gunfight in Diyala Province, one of the last Al Qaeda strongholds in the country.

Meanwhile in Saint Louis:

Democrat supports bring in union members to town hall meetings while refusing to admit anyone who might be a protester.    Police made 6 arrests, including a local news camera man who was filming the events:

St. Louis County police on Thursday arrested six people, including a Post-Dispatch reporter, outside a town hall forum held by Rep. Russ Carnahan, said Dawn Majors, a Post-Dispatch photojournalist who witnessed everything unfold.

It happened about 8:30 p.m at Bernard Middle School on Forder Road in Mehlville. Carnahan, D-St. Louis, had drawn a rowdy crowd that overflowed the school gym and left dozens of people outside. Many of those who showed up at what had been billed as a forum on aging carried signs about the national health-care debate.

Dozens of people were kept out because there was no room for them inside. Members of the local Tea Party Coalition, a movement that has emerged to counter President Barack Obama’s policies, had urged their members to attend, which in turn spurred Democrats to establish a strong presence.

The event was winding down when Majors said she saw a police squad car turn its lights on and went to see what was happening. As she approached it, her eyes started to burn.

“And that's when I realized I'd walked through  remnants of pepper spray,” Majors said.  She turned her attention to taking pictures.

She said she saw a woman in handcuffs who was complaining about the pain of the spray and asking to wash her face and eyes. The response of the officer who was arresting her was, “I warned you,” Majors said.

Majors said the woman had been speaking very loudly and passionately in support of health-care reform earlier in the evening.  US taxpayers spent almost $13 million in expense of flying members of Congress, their staff and families.  No doubt the current fleet of jets in service need to be increased in order to keep members of Congress up to the personal standards that they have become accustomed to.  

“She made herself very visible,” Majors said.

She also saw a man handcuffed and on his stomach. The man kept asking why he was being arrested, Majors said. An officer nearby said she wasn't the arresting officer, but she would let him know later. That response upset the man on the ground, she said.

Another man was sitting on the ground rubbing his knee, but was not handcuffed. Majors said she heard an officer tell him that he would be taken to jail and booked.  

She also saw Post-Dispatch reporter Jake Wagman, who was reporting on the event and shooting video for He was standing on a sidewalk, taking video.

As she photographed everything, Majors said she heard Wagman yell her name and say that he was being arrested. She turned and saw he had been handcuffed and was being put in the back of a squad car. The officer said Wagman had been interfering, Majors said.

She said she did not see what led up to his arrest.

Efforts to get the police version of what happened have been unsuccessful as of 10 p.m.

And in Tampa:

Again, union members are brought in for purpose that can only be described as "crowd control".

And in Washington DC:


Congress put forth plans to spend $550 milion to by eight new jets,  3 Gulfstream V and 3 Boeing 737, to add to the fleet of two dozen passenger jets maintained by the US Air Force to fly members of Congress, their staff and families.   US taxpayers spent almost $13 million in expenses last year transporting Congress around to perform their appointed duties.   

What is happening to our country?

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