Elizabeth Warren’s Damages

November 2, 2012


No Patty Hewes

In the long-running series DAMAGES, high-powered attorney Patty Hewes (played by Glenn Close) takes on corporate criminals on behalf of victims of pension fraud and industrial poisoning.  The fictional Hewes & Associates always represents the little guys, never the fat cats.

Elizabeth Warren claims to be on the side of the little guy, too:  “I have been out there fighting to help protect people who have been run over by big corporations”, Warren insists. Except her lengthy list of clients is devoid of plaintiffs, instead comprised entirely of billion-dollar defendants, most who sought to avoid paying asbestos- and other toxic material-related liabilities.  Everyone knows Warren is a bankruptcy expert. Few realize her specialty is helping big corporations hide behind Chapter 11 to evade compensating the people they robbed, poisoned or got killed.
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Expert Advice

The latest Warren case to be uncovered is the Dow-Corning breast implant suit, in which Warren states she “served in an advisory capacity to Dow Chemical in the early days of the Dow Coming bankruptcy.”  Dow and Owens-Corning partnered in Dow-Corning (“D-C”) to manufacture and market breast implants beginning in 1962.  In 1994, 240,000 women filed suits claiming a variety of medical problems resulting from silicone leaks.

A tentative $3.75 billion settlement was proposed that year, but a judge, finding that amount grossly insufficient to cover all the claims, ordered the parties to return to negotiations.  Then, in May of 1995, D-C filed for bankruptcy, blocking any new lawsuits and “indefinitely delay[ing] settlement of existing litigation against the company.”

Warren’s “advisory capacity”, it seems, was to counsel Dow to protect its assets behind Chapter 11.  Dow, with around $20 billion in annual revenues and $70 billion in assets, could easily weather that one settlement.  But with more than a million women having received D-C implants over the years, Dow — facing accusations of negligence stemming from its original silicone research — had motivation to put a lid on the matter. A November, 1995 ruling on a D-C implant case, awarding a single plaintiff  $14 million, gave further reason to follow Warren’s advice — sacrifice the child company to protect the parent.  D-C now offered a reduced, final settlement of $2.4 billion, with a cap of $200,000 per claimant and as little as $650 each.

Richard Broude, one of Dow’s attorneys (and frequent Warren collaborator on bankruptcy cases) said at the time, “Dow Corning, like any independent company, is doing what’s best for itself. It doesn’t matter whether it has two shareholders or thousands.”

This bankruptcy-as-firewall ploy was was pioneered by Johns-Manville Corporation in the ‘Eighties to evade asbestos poisoning liabilities.  Warren later worked for the resulting Johns-Mansville Trust.  In addition to the token D-C trust fund, Dow shielded itself with a bit of legal chicanery — D-C would have to win a suit against its parents before it could pay out to the victims.  This same trick was later used by another Warren client, Travelers.

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A Snake

Elizabeth Warren claims to defend women’s rights, especially on health issues.  Then why did she help a $70 billion company get away with paying as little as $650 to each woman it poisoned?

In all of her extensive legal work, Warren has only represented big corporations.  Her standard tactic: set up a token trust fund that pays a pittance while shielding corporate assets.  Not once has she fought for the victims.  Nor is there any record of Warren ever doing any pro bono work.

Warren is the worst of hypocrites, a two-faced liar who pretends to be on the side of the common people, but who really works for corporate criminals.  Warren promises that if you send her to Washington, she’ll fight for you.  But we already know she’s a mercenary for the plutocrats.

Do not vote for Elizabeth Warren.  She’s a snake.

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h/t Legal Insurrection for its diligent research.


(c) 2012 by True Liberal Nexus.  All rights reserved.

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How obama Turned Liberals into Zombies

October 26, 2012

The Neo-Con Democrat
The spectacle of the presidential foreign policy debate, with the republican and democratic candidates stumbling over each other to agree on the use of drones, staying for another decade in Afghanistan, Gitmo and such, was proof once again that barack obama is no liberal.

In fact, obama’s policies of endless war, nation-building, and disregard for international law mark him as a neo-con. With his predilection for assassinations and indiscriminate bombings with mounting ‘collateral damage,’ obama has turned the United States into one of those ‘rogue nations’ our rhetoric execrates.

On the home front, obama has also proven himself no liberal. He readily signed extensions of the Patriot Act and FISA, thus denying us our Fourth Amendment rights and strengthening the surveillance state established by his mentor predecessor, Bush.  obama next took away our right to free assembly by signing the Trespass Law, then negated the Constitutional right of habeas corpus by signing into law the indefinite detention provision of the NDAA.  obama routinely ignores the Constitutional separation of powers, issuing executive orders that contravene the will of Congress, while brazenly ignoring the War Powers Act by starting wars at his fancy.  The obama administration has been the worst in history for punishing whistle-blowers.
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The Corporatist Lapdog
Many on the Right label obama a ‘socialist’, which is slanderous, considering obama’s domestic policy reveals him to be a corporatist lapdog. His greatest achievement, healthcare reform (sic), was in actuality a restructuring of the health insurance market, written by the insurance lobby to benefit the insurance lobby. Forty million Americans are still left without healthcare.

When the big banks were caught in a trillion-dollar mortgage fraud scheme, obama railed loudly against the bankers, then slapped them across the wrist with a $12 million token fine. The much-heralded Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, established by obama crony Elizabeth Warren, has yet to indict a single malfeasor.

Candidate obama promised to ban lobbyists from working in his administration.  President obama has more lobbyists in his White House than any previous administration.

Large campaign bundlers found obama amenable to pulling strings to aid their businesses — for example: an FCC waiver allowing LightSquared to encroach on vital military GPS bandwidths; a billion dollar HHS contract to Siga for a useless vaccine.
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The Sham Green Economy
Vaingloriously, obama predicted his inauguration would be remembered as “the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal.”  Yet under obama, the environment has suffered greatly.

Following the disastrous BP oil spill, obama promised to place his “boot on the throat” of that reckless conglomerate, then allowed BP to get away nearly scot free.  Later, obama gave BP the go-ahead to drill in Alaska.

Since 2008, obama has breathlessly told us how he wants to expand “solar, and wind, and bio-diesel”,  and now brags about having doubled the electricity produced by renewables.  That sounds impressive, until you learn that solar and wind still provide a mere 3% our total energy. Four years on, and the US is still heavily dependent on fossil fuels.

obama’s grand(iose) “Green Energy Economy” turned out to be a boondoggle, a false front to hide kickbacks to obama’s biggest campaign donors. Real renewable solutions do exist to meet a majority of our energy needs, yet obama wasted billions of taxpayer money on Solyndra, Beacon, A123, and a dozen other sham companies that went bankrupt.

At the international climate conferences in Copenhagen and Rio, obama personally intervened to side with China and other major greenhouse gas producers to thwart efforts to curtail global warming, thus ensuring that the oceans will indeed keep rising.

At home, obama refused to implement EPA regulations on air quality.  To his credit, obama was against the XL pipeline before he was for it. To keep up with fellow republican, Mitt Romney, obama is now calling for rapid expansion of offshore drilling, mining of coal, and frakking.
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Letting Down the Common People
On the bread & butter economic positions that for a century defined liberalism in America, obama has let down working families time and time again.

His buyout of GM may have provided temporary relief, but it did nothing to address the endemic flaws in our auto industry. His continuation of TARP was nothing more than a cash bonus to bankers for losing risky bets.

As a candidate, obama promised to end the Bush tax cuts on the rich in his first hundred days. He stalled for two years, then promised to end them in 2011. He now promises to end them sometime in his second term. obama promised to cut the deficit in half by the end of his first term. Instead, he added another $5 trillion.

Other than endlessly repeating the words “roads and bridges and schools”, obama has offered no real plan to jump-start a stagnant economy. He amused himself by joking that all those “shovel-ready” projects he was going to fund “weren’t all that shovel-ready, after all.”

Only by heavy manipulation of workforce statistics has obama been able to claim he is finally a “net job creator.”  Two-third of those new jobs are low-wage. Household wealth has sunk 39%. Sixty percent of mortgages are under water.  One in five Americans still can’t find a job they can live on.  While unemployment soared, obama fiddled and diddled. His insipid “jobs bill” was a pastiche of hiring incentives and retraining programs already long proven ineffective. At best, it would have created a million jobs; independent analysts calculated it would have created practically none.

While ordinary Americans suffer, obama has been content to blame his inability to do more on the intransigence of Congress. Yet obama had no trouble working with both Dems and Gops to sign a slew of so-called “free trade” treaties that in truth expedite the off-shoring of hundreds of thousands of American jobs. obama has spent 50% more time on the golf links than in economic briefings.

obama promises to protect Social Security and Medicare.  Yet his “payroll tax cut” robbed S.S. of 16% of its funding. Had his putrid “jobs bill” passed, it would have cut S.S. funding by half, and gut Medicare with half a billion dollars in reckless cuts. To underwrite obamacare, $700 million will be taken from Medicare.
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The Zombie Left
Among the Left, all but the most severe kool-aid addicts admit that obama has been a major disappointment. Still, they plan on voting for him as the ‘lesser of two evils.’  ‘We must protect women’s rights’, they implore.  Are not the right to a speedy trial, to protection from illegal search and seizure, to due process, the rights of women as well?  So long as obama remains president, the Left condone unliberal affronts they would never tolerate from a republican president.

To assume that in a second term obama will suddenly ‘get it’, or miraculously change his nature, is folly. Things would get even worse. True, Romney’s plan to fix the economy will also fail. But obama’s bolloxes have ensured that the country will give the GOP a shot, if not now, then in 2016. Massachusetts survived one term of Romney; America can, too.

The Left, however, cannot survive four more years of obama. In service to obama, the Left now advocate jingoism in foreign policy, and a surveillance state at home. The Left now accept zero progress on jobs or economic fairness, and mutely watch as corporate criminals go unpunished. Thanks to obama, liberals and progressives have abandoned protecting the environment and the fight for universal healthcare. The Left are nothing but mindless zombies, so long as they remain under the sway of obama’s false promises and lies.
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Vote Like a True Liberal
Now is the time for all true liberals to do their duty. To stand up for liberal values by voting for a candidate that also stands up for liberal values. barack obama is not that candidate.

Jill Stein is a true liberal. Her New Green Deal is a comprehensive plan to revitalize the American economy and restore American liberties. Patterned on FDR’s successful programs, Stein’s New Green Deal is a bold yet eminently feasible solution to our pressing problems, a solution that relies on the best liberal principles.

On November 6th, vote as a true liberal. Say ‘enough!’ with the lesser-of-two-evils crap. Vote for Jill Stein.
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(c) 2012 by True Liberal Nexus. All rights reserved.


Elizabeth Warren’s Lies Catching Up With Her

September 28, 2012

Elizabeth Warren, Democrat candidate for Senate in Massachusetts, can’t shake free of unflattering revelations from her past.  First to be exposed was her unverified claim to be a Cherokee, which upset actual Cherokees and raised ethical questions.  Then came accusations from fellow academics that Warren had fudged data for a book, followed by the discovery that the former mortgage fraud czarina had herself made a tidy profit flipping foreclosed homes.  Now comes the shocking news that, not only did Warren represent a string of big businesses in cases against workers, she seems to have been practicing law for over a decade without a license.
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Family Lore vs. Hard Evidence

The first setback to Warren’s maiden election campaign came in April, when it was revealed that she’d publicly listed herself for years as a “Person of Color”, specifically, a Cherokee. (See earlier post for details.)   Despite Warren’s insistence that the Cherokee controversy has been “put to rest” it keeps dogging her, partly because her opponent, Scott Brown, has made it a question of her character, partly because of Warren’s own bizarre compulsion to keep raising the subject.

Brown hit Warren on her false Cherokee claim in the first question of their first debate.  Warren insisted Harvard’s decision to hire her had nothing to do with her claim to minority status, yet refused to comply with Brown’s request for her to release her Harvard paperwork.   Brown and the debate moderator then moved on to other issues, but a few minutes later Warren felt the need to retell the thoroughly-debunked fable of her family’s claims to Cherokee and Delaware ancestry.

Not content to leave it be, Warren released a TV ad insisting yet again that the family lore she heard as child makes it OK for her to call herself a Native American.   This subject is not a winner for Warren, as: 1) exhaustive research by the Cherokee genealogist, Twila Barnes, has proven conclusively that Warren has zero native american ancestry;  2) even had Warren’s claim to 1/32 Cherokee blood been true, under federal law, that was not sufficient for her to claim minority status as a native american.
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Underdog Champion or Hired Gun?

Warren’s claim to fame, which made her the darling of proglodytes, is as a champion of the underdog against avaricious corporations.  In the debate, Brown cast doubt on this image when he questioned Warren’s decision to represent Travelers Insurance in its 2009 attempt to avoid paying compensation to thousands of workers with asbestos poisoning.  Warren insisted that by representing Travelers (“it was an insurance company versus another insurance company” she later explained), she actually helped the poisoned workers by getting Travelers to set up a trust fund, which was better than nothing.  The settlement was later negated by the Supreme Court, leaving the victims with nothing.

Less clear is how Warren was aiding the downtrodden when she represented LTV Steel in 1995, when they attempted to renege on health & pension benefits to thousands of retired coal miners.

Warren has also served, in an advisory or litigating capacity, the following clients in their attempts to use Chapter 11 legalities to avoid liabilities for asbestos poisoning:

  • Kaiser Aluminum
  • Dow Chemical
  • Johns Manville
  • National Gypsum
  • Fuller Austin
  • Fairchild Aviation
  • Piper Aircraft
  • Babcock & Wilcox Company
  • Pittsburgh Coming Corporation
  • Owens Coming Corporation
  • Armstrong World Industries, Inc.
  • W.R. Grace & Company
  • G-1 Holdings, Inc.
  • United States Gypsum Corporation
  • Federal-Mogul Global, Inc.
  • North American Refractories Company

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Unlicensed Practice of the Law

All this scrutiny into Warren’s legal work (conducted primarily by the blog Legal Insurrection) has uncovered a potentially devastating blow to Warren’s Senate aspirations.  It now seems certain that Warren has been practicing law for years in Massachusetts without a license.  That’s a felony.

Warren admits she’s never passed the Mass. bar,  but insists it doesn’t matter as:  1) She’s never really practiced law in Mass, just “dabbled” a bit;  2) She maintains no law office in the state;  3) She’s never appeared in a Mass. court regarding Mass. law;  4) She’s a member of the TX and NJ bars.   All four statements are lies.

Warren has engaged in continuous practice

The long list of clients above, most from 2002 and discovered by chance, belie Warren’s claim of “dabbling.” Warren refuses to release a comprehensive list of clients, but her annual tax returns list six-figure earnings from legal work.

Warren has maintained a permanent law office

Warren insists she has no law office in Massachusetts.  Yet in amicus briefs to the Supreme Court, and in numerous other cases over the past decade where she was listed “of counsel”, Warren gave her Harvard address as the location of her law practice.  On her Texas bar file, she also lists Cambridge, MA, as the location of her practice.

Clearly, Warren’s lawyerly endeavors meets the State’s criteria of someone who “establish[es] an office or other systematic and continuous presence in this jurisdiction for the practice of law,” and who “hold[s] out to the public or otherwise represent that the lawyer is admitted to practice law in this jurisdiction.”

Warren practiced law in Massachusetts

Legal Insurrection has uncovered Cadle Company v. Schlictmann, a 2007 appeal before in the First Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston, involving a state lien law. Both plaintiff and defendant were from Massachusetts. Warren represented the defendant.

Warren held no active state bar memberships

In 2003, Warren affirmed to the Supreme Court that “I am a member of the bar of the States of Texas and New Jersey.”  Warren also listed her Texas and New Jersey bar memberships in a 2008 CV.

Trouble is, Warren’s Texas bar membership lapsed in 1992. Texas lists Warren as “inactive” and not permitted to practice law.   On September 11, 2012, Warren suddenly resigned from the New Jersey bar, effectively blocking searches into when her membership was last active. Warren claimed she was too busy with the campaign to keep up with the continuing education requirements, even though the NJ bar extends magnanimous waivers and extensions.

Surpisingly, in a recent radio interview, Warren laughingly revealed “I’ve been inactive in the New Jersey bar for a very, very long time.”  That’s two “very’s” and a “long”, which probably takes us back before 2002, when Warren represented at least ten clients in court, and submitted an amicus to the Supreme Court. Certainly 2009’s Travelers v. Bailey wasn’t “very, very long ago” at all.

That’s known as Unlicensed Practice of the Law, and the State of Massachusetts take a dim view of it:

“Whoever has been so removed and continues thereafter to practice law or to receive any fee for his services as an attorney at law rendered after such removal, or who holds himself out, or who represents or advertises himself as an attorney or counsellor at law, or whoever, not having been lawfully admitted to practice as an attorney at law, represents himself to be an attorney or counsellor at law, or to be lawfully qualified to practice in the courts of the commonwealth, by means of a sign, business card, letter head or otherwise, … shall be punished for a first offence by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or by imprisonment for not more than six months, and for a subsequent offence by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars or by imprisonment for not more than one year.”

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Scoundrel

We now have compelling and damning evidence that Elizabeth Warren is an hypocrite, a compulsive liar, a cheat, an impostor, a perjurer, and a felon.  In an earlier age, a person of Warren’s low character would have been labeled a ‘scoundrel.’  Today, she’s called a ‘progressive hero.’

But hey — Warren gave a speech on youtube that thrilled the proglodytes (they do love their demagoguery!)  So the Dem Machine in Chicago tapped her for the Mass. Senate race.  Like obama before her, the Dems didn’t give a hoot about a proper vetting.  And now, like with obama, the Dems reflexively defend their candidate, Warren, for truly indefensible conduct.

Elizabeth Warren is unfit to hold office.  (If justice be served, she’ll soon trade that hideous red blazer for an orange jumpsuit.)  No true liberal in Massachusetts, who values honesty and integrity, can vote for Warren with a clear conscience.  They must cast their ballot for either Socialist Laura Garza, independent Bill Cimbrilo, or, (gasp) Scott Brown.

And vote for Jill Stein for president.

Note: This article is greatly indebted to the findings presented by Legal Insurrection.


(c) 2012 by True Liberal Nexus.  All rights reserved.


The Labor Pains of Robert Reich

September 4, 2012

Robert Reich is sorely disappointed in obama’s economic proposals, or lack thereof.  So why does Reich still support obama?

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Robert Reich isn’t happy with either Mitt Romney or barack obama.  Reich, Secretary of Labor under President Clinton and ardent advocate of leftist ideals no longer embraced by the Left, wants to hear how they’d remedy “the worst economy since the Great Depression.”

“Neither candidate,” Reich laments, “wants to take any chances by offering any large, serious proposals. Both are banking instead on negative campaigns that convince voters the other guy would be worse.”  Reich believes this “anti-election” spells disaster for the next president. “The public won’t have endorsed any new ideas or bold plans, which means he won’t have a clear mandate to do anything on the economy.”

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 Desperately Seeking Bold

Reich is especially pained by the lack of “any bold ideas” coming from obama, who Reich endorsed early in the 2008 primaries, and whose stinky jockstrap he’s faithfully carried ever since.  As one of those who still believe obama is just too timid to act on his good intentions, Reich offers a few friendly suggestions to the Democrat’s choice:

  • “Propose a new WPA, modeled after the Depression-era jobs program that hired hundreds of thousands of jobless Americans to rebuild the nation’s infrastructure, or a new Civilian Conservation Corps”
  • Permanently exempt the first $25,000 of income from payroll taxes, and eliminate the income ceiling;
  • Reinstate Glass-Steagall;
  • Break up the big banks, “so Wall Street doesn’t cause another financial collapse.”

C’mon barry, we can do it!

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Cognitive Disconnect

It’s frustrating to watch someone as highly intelligent as Reich become so incredibly stupid. Actions speak louder than words, and after 3 1/2 years, it’s obvious that obama has no intention of doing any of those sorts of things. For obama is Wall Street’s bitch.  But that’s obama’s one great gift: he’s a stupid-maker, with the power to turn otherwise sane, rational people into blathering fools.

To date, obama’s economic policy has been very un-Reichian: failed bailouts of failed big banks & failed big auto; a dogged refusal to go after mortgage swindlers or Wall Street brigands; the eager signing of a series of jobs-killing “free trade” treaties; a jobs (sic) bill that contained under-funded, already-failed measures — what union boss Richard Trumka labeled “nibbling around the edge” — sandwiched between gratuitous guttings of Social Security and Medicare.  The economy remains moribund and real unemployment remains stuck at c. 15% — a figure Reich himself cited to justify labeling our current malaise a “depression.”  Most of the ‘new’ jobs created under obama are low wage substitutes for lost high-paying ones.  Half of recent college graduates can’t find employment, while job-seekers over 40 are plain S.O.L. As a result, obama is reduced to speaking about jobs ‘saved’, not created — or promising to be more like a Clinton next term.

Reich, like most Americans, falls for the ‘lesser of two evils’ trap.  When faced with Romney’s promise to bring back the economic policies of the Harding, Coolidge and Hoover administrations, dragging along obama like a petulant child seems the only option.

Were Reich to wrest free from obama the Deceiver’s svengali spell, he’d see that there is indeed someone running for president who proposes just the “big bold ideas” Reich yearns for — Jill Stein.

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Got Bold?

Want bold, Bob?  While Romney promises 12 million jobs — eventually — through laissez-faire policies & expansion of fossil fuel production, and obama hints at another million or so jobs ‘saved’, Jill Stein takes the bull by the horns:

“We will end unemployment in America once and for all by guaranteeing a job at a living wage for every American willing and able to work”, Stein proposes, including 16 millions jobs in sustainable energy, retrofitting, and mass transit.

Want aggressive financial reform?  While the obamney twins are mute on the subject, Stein will:

  • Create a federal bank to take over distressed mortgages and either restructure the mortgages or rent homes to the occupants;
  • Nationalize the Federal Reserve;
  • Break up “too big to fail” banks;
  • End future bailouts for financial institutions, instead using FDIC powers to reopen them as non-profit public banks;
  • Regulate all financial derivatives;
  • Reinstate Glass-Steagall.

Hey Bob, want tax justice?  In contrast to obama, who carefully avoided every opportunity to repeal the Bush tax cuts for the rich, or to Romney, who advocates even more tax cuts for the nobility plutocrats “job-creators”, Stein proposes:

  • A 90% tax on bonuses for the bankers Bush and obama bailed-out;
  • Making corporate tax subsidies transparent in public budgets;
  • A fair, progressive tax system “distributed in proportion to ability to pay.”

Finally, in contrast to the imperial war-monger, obama, or Romney, who wants to increase military spending to unprecedented levels, Stein will cut the military budget in half, a $360 billion savings toward reducing the stifling deficit.
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Wrong Horse, Bob

Clearly, Robert Reich should endorse Jill Stein for president. Why he, like so many liberals, still clings to the vain hope that obama will change at some point, deserves scrutiny.

Perhaps Reich believes that only someone well-integrated into the political machinery can hope to accomplish anything in Washington.  Hardly a plus-point, when that political machine is comprised exclusively of politician-whores who’ll sell their votes (and their souls, if they had any) to the highest bidder.

Likely, Reich falls for the bogus argument that vast amounts of experience is required to hold office.  Ignoring for a moment how this trope perpetuates the Dem/Gop choke-hold, look at the “experience” of the obamney twins.  The one was a mafia lawyer who wormed his way up the party machine hierarchy; the other, a financier, born to the manor, adept at making gobs of money by clever shuffling around of other people’s money.  When the backgrounds of the occupants of the Oval Office are limited to corruption, graft, and plunder, it’s no wonder the state we’re in.

Finally, Reich may think that third parties have no chance in our elections system.  That’s a tautology — they have no chance because no one gives them a chance. Stein’s name will be printed on at least 33 state ballots this November, and write-ins for her will count in a further three.  Her campaign is currently working to get on every state ballot except Oklahoma.  Were every liberal and moderate to vote this November based on their beliefs, and not some vestigial team loyalty, Jill Stein would be our next president.

And, if prominent, influential liberals like Robert Reich began supporting a candidate like Jill Stein, who advocates true liberal ideals and programs, instead of continuing to make lame excuses for a devious, corrupt, corporatist whore like barack obama, we could end this farce and quick.

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(c) 2012 by True Liberal Nexus.  All rights reserved.


Elizabeth Warren’s Struggle With Truth

June 3, 2012

Whatever else can be said about Elizabeth Warren, one thing is certain:  she is no less than 96.875% white.

And yet Warren, the anointed Democratic nominee for the Massachusetts Senate race, has presented herself for decades as a Cherokee Indian to the public, to professional organizations, and to employers.  This despite no hard evidence, only family lore foggily recalled from childhood.

Ever since the story broke on April 27th, Warren’s heritage controversy has blotted out all other aspects of the campaign.  Warren’s detractors see it as indicative of her untrustworthiness, while her supporters insist it is all much ado about nothing.  The media has, with few exceptions, been reluctant to cover the story at all, much less dig deep, and even then, has rarely gotten the details straight.  So, before passing judgement on Warren, a closer look at the facts is in order.

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Is Warren Really a Cherokee?

Given their turbulent, tragic legacy of ethnic cleansing and forced assimilation, the several Native American tribes face a daunting task in the preservation & revival of a fragile, once fading culture.  In defining their community, they must balance inclusiveness with dedication to values.

Every Tribe, Band or Nation has its own admission requirements, all based on some ancestral link.  While many “official” Indians may look white and have white names, each has made a life-long commitment to immerse themselves in, and work to keep vibrant, their respective culture, language, and national identity.

Warren admits she never formally applied for Cherokee citizenship.  A good call, as Warren’s ancestry fails the citizenship test of the three Federally-recognized Cherokee tribes.  The largest, The Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, has no “blood quantum” standard, but does require the applicant have at least one ancestor listed on the Dawes Rolls, a 1906 federal census of Cherokees.  It’s important to stress that what’s being defined is not membership in an ethnic group, rather citizenship in a sovereign nation.  The Cherokee Constitution is explicit on this, and the Dawes Rolls enumerated many freedmen who’d joined the tribe, as well as whites who’d intermarried.  Warren’s allegedly Cherokee great-great-great-grandmother, O.C. Smith, died in the mid 19th century. Neither of  Warren’s maternal ancestors alive when the Dawes Rolls were compiled, John H. Crawford and Hannie Crawford, appear anywhere on them.

Warren would also be rejected by the United Keetoowah Band, which, in addition to a Dawes Rolls ancestor, requires its citizens possess at least 1/4 quarter Cherokee blood.

The 1/16 blood quantum requirement often mentioned by the media is for the Eastern Band of Cherokee  of North Carolina, which also requires an ancestor listed on the Baker Roll.  Warren, at best of 1/32nd Cherokee descent (or, as she most recently intimated, 1/64th), and lacking a Baker roll ancestor, would not be permitted to join this tribe, either.

As a fall-back, Warren could have paid the $35 fee to submit her genealogy to the Cherokee Heritage Documentation Center in hopes of receiving a Declaration of Cherokee Heritage “suitable for framing” that would allow her “to display and be proud of [her] heritage,” while shielding her “from being labeled a ‘wannabe Indian’ rather than someone seeking their true heritage.”

Even here, Warren may have struck out.  Frantic efforts to unearth documentation confirming Smith’s Cherokee status have come up with nothing, other than evidence that Warren’s great-great-great grandfather may have belonged to a local militia that participated in the notorious “Trail of Tears”, the brutal relocation of the Cherokee to Oklahoma.

Cherokee historian and genealogist, Twila Barnes, offers convincing evidence that the sole scrap of documentation for Warren’s claim, a marriage license listing Hannie Crawford, Warren’s grandmother’s, race as “Indian”, actually lists her residence as “Indian Territory.”  Warren’s “mammaw” was just another white Sooner who stole land from the Cherokee.
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Does Warren Have the Right to Call Herself Cherokee?

None of this matters to Warren, who choses to ‘self-identify’ based on vague family lore. “Being Native American has been part of my story I guess since the day I was born,” gushed Warren.  “I still have a picture on my mantel … of my grandfather. And my Aunt Bea has walked by that picture at least a 1,000 times remarked that he – her father, my Papaw — had high cheek bones like all of the Indians do.”

The exotic notion of being a secret indian princess must have proved irresistible to the plain, bookish daughter of a janitor.   Yet Warren also nurtured this fantasy as an adult, listing herself as “Cherokee” when contributing WASPy recipes like crab dip with mayonnaise to a fundraising cookbook with the kitschy title “Pow Wow Chow.”

Nothing offends actual tribal members more than “Pretendians” who, for cachet, claim Indian ancestry, but have no desire to participate in tribal life.  “If you’re going to claim it, you have to help your people out,” admonishes Rhonda LeValdo, president of the Native American Journalists Association.  “Don’t just use it when you want to use it.”

In direct response to Warren’s claims, Barnes and another prominent figure in the Cherokee community, David Cornsilk, have formed a group  to convey their sense that “false claims like Elizabeth Warren is making are harmful to the Cherokee people.”  No one, they feel, “has the right to try to rewrite it or make up fictitious stories so they can fit in it or take advantage of it.”

What did Warren Claim and When?

One can, of course, acknowledge one’s Native American ancestry without professing to Native American identity.  Warren, who is at best 3.125% Indian (see update below), has the right to embarrass herself at cocktail parties by saying she’s a Cherokee.  Nor is there any law that prevents a person, whose family tree is pure white for four generations, to fancy themselves a member of an Indian tribe.  Definitely odd-ball, but not illegal.

Warren’s assertions would have fallen merely into the realm of tacky or kooky, had she not also listed herself  as a minority in a professional directory frequently referenced by hiring deans.  It has been confirmed that, even while depicting herself as a minority in the law professors’ directory, Warren listed herself as “white” on her U Texas application.  Warren has reluctantly confessed to telling two of her employers, Penn and Harvard, that she was a minority.  Warren insists this played no role in her hiring, something the schools officially verify.  Both Penn and Harvard, though, listed her as a minority on federally-mandated diversity hiring reports.

This is a clear violation of Federal Affirmative Action hiring policy, which stipulates that a Native American is “a person having origins in any of the original peoples of North America, and who maintains cultural identification through tribal affiliation or community recognition.”  (My emphasis.)  Accepting a recipe cribbed off of Martha Stewart does not count as “community recognition.”
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Dances With Lies

Since the story broke, Warren has issued a series of explanations, each one contradicting the previous.  Initially, she denied ever listing herself as a minority.  When that was proven false, she insisted it was in hopes of being “invited to a luncheon, a group or something with people who are like I am,” but abandoned the practice when no one asked her out.   Yet, since she was only listed as a generic “minority” (h/t Legal Insurrection), how did she expect to connect with fellow 31/32nd non-indian law profs to share memories of sticking turkey feathers in their hair as little girls?

Warren next denied she even knew her employers had listed her as a minority.  “I think I read it on the front page of the Herald,” Warren responded, when asked about Harvard’s having promoted her purported minority status.  When this was also proven false, Warren claimed she’d misunderstood the ‘When did you first learn…?’ part of the reporter’s question.

Faced with persistent demands for clarification, Warren re-shuffled the facts, creating a tale in which, while she had listed herself as a minority in a directory, she’d never told her prospective employers she was a Cherokee.  When that was exposed as untrue, Warren insisted she only told Penn (1987), and Harvard (1992) after being hired — each time in passing, to make chit-chat over lunch.

In politics, this is known as “spin”.  In the real world, it’s called getting caught making shit up.  No wonder wags have dubbed Warren “Lie-awatha” and “Dances With Lies.”
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Is Warren Fit For Public Office?

Warren’s performance under this character test is disconcerting for a number of reasons.

First, her inept handling of the accelerating controversy raises doubt as to whether Warren, a life-long academician and political tyro, has the chops for a Senate campaign.  Her refusal to promptly to tackle the crisis head-on (her literal fleeing from reporters and slamming doors in their faces evoked memories of John Edwards cowering in a toilet stall), was belatedly followed by series of stumbling, unconvincing retractions.

Second, her rapidly-shifting story indicates a comfort with mendacity all too common among today’s office-seekers.  More alarming, Warren’s struggle with truth is not limited to her Cherokee claims, but rather pervades every aspect of her public persona.

Trying to establish her hard-scrabble origins, the wealthy, Ivy-League academic told a story about her grandmother, who “drove a wagon in the land rush to settle territory out west. It was 1889, she was 15 years old…She lived to be 94, to see her youngest grandchild -– that’s me -– graduate from college.…”  Except her Sooner “mammaw”, mentioned above, died nearly a decade before Warren graduated.  It was Warren’s other grandmother who attended her graduation.  I don’t know about you, but I’ve never mixed up my grandmothers.

Warren’s chief selling point is her reputation as a “watchdog” over fraudulent mortgage practices, someone who identifies with and protects struggling home owners “being hammered” by predatory lenders.  Yet now comes the revelation that during the 1990’s, Warren made hefty profits ‘flipping’ foreclosed houses she and her brother bought on the cheap.  And she financed this enterprise with an interest-free loan from Harvard.

A recently dug-up video clip shows Warren declaring, in all earnestness, that she was “the first nursing mother to take the bar,”  perhaps just in the State of New Jersey, perhaps in the History of Western Civilization.  As one of her fellow law students observed, since the NJ Bar most assuredly does not track statistics on breast feeding, how can Warren make this claim?   Of the few plausible explanations, the least-damaging is that someone at the time cracked wise, ‘Gee, Liz, you must be the first …’ and Warren’s fertile imagination later transformed it into a bullet point for her CV.

Scott Brown and Co. have another five months to poke around for more.
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Donnie Darko for Senate

All this leaves one with the impression of Warren as a fabulist disturbingly out of touch with reality.  Here is an adult professional, an Ivy-league professor & former head of a federal regulatory agency, who for decades has indulged in a self-aggrandizing childhood fantasy.  It leaves one with a queasiness not unlike if, during a stump speech, a candidate gave a shout-out to their long-time supporter and imaginary friend.

When caught lying, your typical candidate at first denies it, then, if that doesn’t work, ‘fesses up and tries to move on.  Yet Warren’s inability to admit she’s not really an Indian princess is seemingly pathological:

“It’s who I am, it’s how I grew up. It’s me, part of me, through and through. I can’t change that.’’

“I won’t deny who I am, I won’t deny my heritage.”

“This was real in my life. I can’t deny my heritage. I can’t and I won’t.”

These soul-baring plaints were uttered by Warren just Friday, when, instead of putting the issue to rest, she felt compelled to fly to Oklahoma and stand in front of her childhood home to spin a new yarn about her parents needing to elope because her mother was part (1/16) Cherokee and Delaware.  (Now it’s Delaware, too?)  It took but a few hours before the breitbarters exposed this as yet another confection of Lizzie’s fertile imagination.  For their nuptials, it seems, Warren’s parents traveled all of 14 miles to the county seat, to be wed by the local minister.
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A “Liberal Champion?”

Is this is the best the Dems can do?  Is an inexperienced, completely un-vetted, thoroughly nutty professor really their idea of a “Liberal Champion” to lift the Mongol Yoke from Teddy’s seat?  If so, the Democratic Party is hopelessly inept and on its last legs.

In fact, Bay State Dems did have a viable alternative to the hapless, flawed, mendacious Warren.  Someone with a true liberal platform, a confident, feisty, yet endearing charm, a seemingly impeccable background, plus actual experience running for office.  Sounds great?  No, actually, because Dem big-wigs treated this fellow Democrat like the enemy.  Her name is Marisa DeFranco, and this weekend, party leaders took unprecedented steps to ensure that the voters of Massachusetts would have no chance to reject the anointed Warren.

We’ll look next at why Marisa DeFranco so frightened the Dem Machine.

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UPDATE ( 6/5/12):

*  In response to my inquiries, Twila Barnes confirmed that her research team did a thorough search of the Dawes Rolls and found not a single Warren ancestor on them.  Nor can a Warren ancestor be found on any of the two dozen existing rolls, lists, musters or censuses of Cherokee;

* Barnes has also just completed an exhaustive study of Warren’s entire family tree — something Warren herself never deemed necessary — proving that every single Warren ancestor going back for five generations was listed on records as “white.”   For those of you who are fractionally-challenged, that makes Warren 0/32nds, or ZERO PERCENT, American Indian;

* Warren, insisting that Aunt Bea’s just-so fables trump cold, hard facts, sticks to her jalousie of Cherokee heritage.  In a WBZ interview, Warren declared that if elected, she’d be the first senator from Massachusetts “so far as I know who has Native American heritage”;

* At the blog Cherokees Demand Truth From Elizabeth Warren, Barnes has granted Warren’s long-time wish, an invitation to a luncheon date with a real live Cherokee Indian.  To date, Warren has not accepted.

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(c) 2012 by True Liberal Nexus.  All rights reserved.


The Four Scandals of barack obama — Part 2: Lightsquared

January 9, 2012

We now come to the first of a trio of scandals involving the most venal and brazen examples in recent memory of apparent bribery at the highest levels of our government.  Three tales of ravenously greedy billionaires, and the tricks turned by a high-priced call girl of a president willing to sell out our Nation’s prosperity and even military security for a few grip in campaign donations.

Scandal #2 — Lightsquared

Background

Lightsquared (“L2”) is a Reston, Virginia-based telecommunications start-up with an extensive satellite network.  L2 plans to link its satellites with 40,000 ground-based stations, then sell access to this network to cable, internet and wireless broadband providers.  L2 has tentative, highly lucrative agreements with several providers, including a 15-year contract with Sprint.  L2 had hoped to open four trial markets by late 2011.

The Plot Thickens

To create its hybrid network, L2 needed a waiver from the FCC, which was tentatively granted in January, 2011, despite fervent objections from telecom experts and the Departments of Transportation, Homeland Security, and Defense.

The bandwidth L2 intends to use sits right next to that used by GPS devices.  GPS is an extremely weak signal.  Preliminary tests showed that L2’s transmissions would cause “catastrophic interference,”  affecting everyone from motorists, boaters, and farmers who now plow their fields using GPS, to — more alarmingly — aviation safety and the military, which relies heavily on GPS.

The White House Connection

Beginning last February, Congress held hearings on whether to confirm the waiver the FCC issued to L2.  The obama administration prepared government witnesses to testify in favor. Really prepared.  One committee member noted that four out of the five statements given at one hearing contained identical paragraphs saying no real interference issues existed, and the sentence “We hope that testing can be complete within 90 days.”

When questioned, the White House Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) admitted it had edited the statements, but insisted that “coaching” and “providing consistency” in witnesses testimony was “standard practice.”

Two witnesses balked.  Air Force General William Shelton, head of U.S. Space Command, announced he’d been “pressured” to testify that no GPS interference issues exist, when he and the entire military have grave concerns.  Shelton was also “chafed” that OMB inserted the 90-day test deadline into his prepared testimony.

Anthony Russo, another expert government witness, acknowledges that he, too, was “guided” by the White House to testify that interference tests could be completed in 90 days.  Russo refused, as he believed those tests required six months or more.  Several government experts agree: “[t]o pick a number and say the tests have to end by a certain date is not consistent with commission precedent.”

One odd coincidence:  in 2005, obama invested $90,000 in SkyTerra, which later became L2.  The investment took place the very day SkyTerra’s stock soared following a preliminary FCC ruling allowing the creation of its wireless network.  obama apparently sold the stock later at a $13,000 loss. At least two other administration officials still have financial links to L2.

The Payola

Why 90 days?  Because in the Fall of 2011, L2 had planned on opening trial markets in four cities, and L2’s $14 billion contract with Sprint was due to expire on December 31st, 2011 if FCC approval had not been secured. (Sprint has since extended the window another few months.)

Majority owner of LightSquared is Phil Falcone, who made billions on the subprime mortgage bubble.  Falcone also donated heavily to obama and the DNC in 2008.  Just prior to the FCC waiver ruling, Falcone made several visits to White House officials, where he admits he told them the waiver ruling “should not take that long.”

Two days before the waiver was granted, Falcone and his wife each donated the maximum $30,400 to the DNC.  LightSquared CEO Sanjiv Ahuja made his own $30,400 contribution to the DNC on the same day he met with administration officials to discuss the waiver.

An L2 executive next emailed Aneesh Chopra, obama’s chief technology adviser (and former L2 board member):

Hi Aneesh!

I touched base … Sanjiv Ahuja and he expressed an interest in meeting with you.…  He is going to be in DC next week for a fundraising dinner with the President.

To make sure the message was delivered, L2’s lawyer emailed the chief of staff for the White House Office of Science and Technology:

You may recall that you met with Sanjiv Ahuja about a year ago, with Phil Falcone … as Phil & Sanjiv were finalizing their plans for a new wireless broadband network….  Sanjiv will be at a fund-raiser dinner with the President on September 30 and would like to visit with you … and Aneesh Chopra….

The obama administration swears there is absolutely no connection between all this and the FCC’s hurried granting of the waiver over numerous & strenuous objections, or OMB’s witness tampering.

Ahuja is “outraged” by the leak of the emails exposing his crude offer of bribes to the President, and is demanding a Federal investigation into that.   Ahuja drolly notes that the emails cast “serious doubts about the fairness and integrity of the entire process….”

What Lies Ahead

The recently released results of tests, completed this past November by agencies including DoD and the FAA, confirm that up to 75% of all GPS devices would suffer severe disruption by the L2 network.  Additional tests on high-precision GPS used in farm equipment and scientific instruments will be conducted in 2012.

In response, L2 is now offering to reduce the strength of its signals, which it promises would only screw up 10% of all GPS.  Which makes one wonder: if the solution is that simple, why did L2 need the stronger signal in the first place?  Was, just maybe, frakking up GPS part of the business plan all along?

A group of agricultural equipment manufacturers, led by John Deere, have formed Coalition to Save our GPS to lobby against the L2 approval.

The recent NDAA defense bill contained language expressly intended to hold up approval of L2’s network until further tests are completed.  “Our military is heavily reliant on GPS capability to do its job. It is unacceptable for our armed forces to be put at greater risk or made less effective as a result of LightSquared’s operations,” Rep. Michael Turner said in a statement. “Our troops are depending on our government, and the FCC, to do the right thing.”

Congress has repeated its formal request for documents related to the case, which OMB and the FCC have so far ignored, and Issa’s Committee has promised to continue its investigation of  the apparent payola. The chair of the Armed Services Subcommittee on Strategic Forces has also called for hearings on the “irregular process” of L2’s waiver approval.

There’s really no way to put a positive spin on this story.  The obama administration got caught trying to sneak through approval of a disastrous & dangerous business scheme directly on the heels of hefty campaign contributions from a financier obama & Co. have been cozy with for years.  Expect obama to be subpoenaed but refuse to appear, and the FCC to quietly revoke the waiver as ever more Federal agencies and GPS-related industry groups join the pile-on.

On Deck — Solyndra

(c) 2012 by True Liberal Nexus.  All rights reserved.


The Four Scandals of barack obama — Part 1: Fast and Furious

January 6, 2012

As obama’s perpetual campaign kicks into high gear, four potential scandals loom on the horizon that may well derail his reelection hopes and, in a just world, lead to impeachment.

As the most corrupt president since Richard Nixon, it’s no surprise that obama and his administration are neck-deep in scandal.  What’s astonishing is how this Chicago thug has gotten away scot-free for so long.  Yet obama’s decades’ long crime spree may be nearing an end.  This year, ongoing investigations, led primarily by Congressman Darrell Issa and Senator Chuck Grassley, promise to turn Fast and Furious, Lightsquared, Solyndra, and SIGA into household names for Americans, and into “Watergates” for obama.

Scandal # 1 — Fast and Furious

Background

On December 14, 2010, Brian Terry, a federal Customs and Border Protection agent, was shot and killed while battling Mexican drug runners.  It turned out that two of the assault rifles used in the shoot-out had made their way into the hands of the gangsters as part of a Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (“ATF”) operation known ludicrously as “Fast and Furious” (“F&F”).  Not to be confused with the Vin Diesel franchise, F&F attempted to trace gun purchases back to Mexican drug cartel kingpins by letting guns “walk across the border.”  A lot of guns.  Two thousand guns.  Dealers along the border were told by ATF to ignore background checks and sell weapons to known criminals.

The gun dealers’ reservations about this scheme are on record.  The ATF agents’ reservations  are on record.  And, indeed, it was a stupid plan, with too many guns delivered into the hands of vicious criminals. It sparked unprecedented levels of drug running violence, and it got Brian Terry killed.

The Plot Thickens

But it gets worse.

On February 4, 2011, in a letter to Grassley, Assistant Attorney General Ron Weich wrote

The allegation … that ATF ‘sanctioned’ or otherwise knowingly allowed the sale of assault weapons to a straw purchaser who then transported them to Mexico — is false… ATF makes every effort to interdict weapons that have been purchased illegally and prevent their transportation to Mexico.

When summoned before Congress on May 3rd, 2011, AG Eric Holder insisted

I’m not sure of the exact date, but I probably heard about Fast and Furious for the first time over the last few weeks.

In his June 15, 2011 testimony before Congress, Weich continued to insist that  “[t]he Attorney General … has taken very seriously allegations that firearms … were intentionally allowed “to walk” into Mexico,” had ordered an internal investigation into the matter, and “also has reiterated to Department law enforcement personnel that they are not knowingly to allow any firearms to be illegally transported into Mexico for any reason.”

Too bad for John Mitchell Eric Holder that his subpoenaed emails reveal he’d been receiving weekly updates on F&F since at least July 5th, 2010. Eric, when an AG to perjures himself, it’s not just embarrassing, it’s a felony.

The White House Connection

Last September, Issa & Grassley announced they were expanding their investigation to include three White House staffers, including a Special Assistant to The President, who had been “provided regular updates” on F&F “as early as Summer of 2010.”

The White House swears they were merely “briefed on the toplines”; that no one ever knew “about the investigative tactics being used in the operation, let alone any decision to let guns walk.”  The name “Fast and Furious” was never even mentioned, the White House noted, until after the investigations began.

Yet these updates did speak of a “GRIT Surge Phoenix,” (Gun Runner Impact Teams), and noted the many ATF agents temporarily transferred to work on “firearms trafficking investigations with direct links to Mexican” cartels.

What Lies Ahead

F&F guns have now been linked to eleven other crimes.  The regional ATF chief who ran F&F was sacked, then the director of ATF was forced to resign.

The New York Times revealed last month that undercover DEA agents were involved in smuggling transport millions of dollars in cash across the border in a related “money-walking” scheme aimed at studying and disrupting drug trafficking routes.  And now it seems that at least some of the “straw” buyers in F&F were paid FBI informants.

Several GOP congressmen are calling for a special counsel to determine whether Holder perjured himself.  Over fifty have signed a letter asking Holder to resign.  The lame excuses of Holder and the White House, to the effect of ‘oh, that was a different gun-walking operation we were discussing in those emails’, doesn’t help them.

Expect Issa & Grassely to make the public flaying of Holder long and painful, eventually forcing Holder to resign or face perjury charges.  Many believe obama was also “complicit” in F&F, but Holder will likely fall on his sword rather than rat on the godfather of his crime family betray his president.


Up Next — Lightsquared.


(c) 2012 by True Liberal Nexus.  All rights reserved.