More from James Brown

I’m sorry, I really didn’t like Rocky IV. I thought Rocky was done at III. I won’t even talk about VI.

James Brown began acting in the middle 80’s. His career got a big boost (as did many other artists – Cab Calloway, John Hooker to name a few) by being in the Blues Brother movie. Livin’ in America was part of this push. It was a typical James Brown song with the energy, horns, bass (became a part of his sound in the late 60’s) and ad libs. I found many versions of this video. This one was the best.

Richard Ben-Veniste on Nixon's pardon

From WaPo:

By Richard Ben-Veniste (commissioner on the 9/11 Commission)
Friday, December 29, 2006; A27

Gerald R. Ford was a decent and honorable man. Under his steady hand, the nation began the process of recovering from the terrible trauma of Watergate — the lies, distortions, coverups, misuses of federal agencies to exact political revenge, illegal wiretapping, burglaries. . . . The list went on and on — all in the midst of the deeply divisive Vietnam War. Did Ford make the right decision in pardoning his predecessor? The answer to that question is more nuanced than either the howls of outrage that greeted the pardon three decades ago or the general acceptance with which it is viewed now.

When Richard M. Nixon resigned and Ford became the 38th president of the United States, the Watergate Special Prosecutor’s Office, of which I was a member, was preparing for the criminal trials of Nixon’s top aides — H.R. Haldeman, John Ehrlichman and John Mitchell. We had accumulated significant evidence showing Nixon’s active participation in a conspiracy to obstruct the FBI and grand jury investigation of the Watergate break-in and the related “White House horrors,” to use Mitchell’s famous description. Nixon himself had been named an “unindicted co-conspirator” by the grand jury — even before the Supreme Court compelled disclosure of the “smoking gun” tape.

It was our collective view that so long as Nixon held the office of president, the constitutionally sanctioned process of impeachment should trump any suggestion that a sitting president be indicted. But there was considerable disagreement within the special prosecutor’s office on the proper way to discharge our responsibilities vis-a-vis private citizen Nixon. Continue reading

Saddam to hang soon

From NYT:

Preparations for the execution of Saddam Hussein began taking on a sense of urgency late Thursday as American and Iraqi officials suggested that he could be hanged within a span of days rather than weeks.

After upholding the death sentence against Mr. Hussein on Tuesday for the execution of 148 Shiite men and boys in 1982, an Iraqi appeals court ruled that he must be sent to the gallows within 30 days. But Mr. Hussein may not have even that long to live, officials said.

A senior administration official said that the execution would probably not take place in the next 24 hours, but that the timing would be swift. “It may be another day or so,” the official said.

Another senior administration official said later Thursday night that Iraqi officials had told the White House to expect the execution on Saturday, Baghdad time. more …

Don’t misunderstand me, I know Saddam Hussein is a “bad” guy but how can you have a fair trial if your lawyers keep turning up dead. It was seem to me that it is in the interest of the United States for the trial to be as fair as possible.