Saturday, July 17

Looks like Lance

While I am loathe to call the race at this early point and I won't, Its shaping up to be a two man affair. Ivan Basso, the winner of yesterday's stage was the only one who could keep up with Lance at the finish of the stage and sits 1:17 behind the Texan. Basso can climb and time-trial and so has a chance to overtake the American if Lance has a bad day. But you can pretty much forget the rest. Hamilton abandoned the tour today from back injuries suffered in crash on stage six, and Ullrich lost more time today and is now 6:39 behind Lance. Perhaps the biggest story of the day was that 23 year old Frenchman Thomas Voeckler limits his losses and keeps the yellow jersey by a scant 22 seconds. He was supposed to loose the thing yesterday. In Voeckler, the French may finally have that future tour contender they have longed for over so many years. Last French rider to win was Bernard Hinault in 1985 (another member of the 5 tour club) If you want more detail check out cyclingnews.

Stuff you forget about

Some friends and I were driving back from the lake a week or two ago, when it suddenly occurred to me that I hadn't seen any Bush/Cheney (I prefer Chimpy/McCrashcart, but that's just me) bumper stickers.
My companions recognized this as well. So for the remaining mile home we scanned all of the cars we could see and came up with only one. And that was't confirmed. What this means I don't know, but it did put a smile on my face.

2000 was a different story. I live in a University town, so Gore/Leiberman bumper stickers outnumbered Chimpy/McCrashcart ones, but you would still see the latter at least once a block. This post jogged my memory.
On the commute home, I saw a guy come through the station to catch a train, carrying a "John Kerry for President" sign. Maybe there is hope! It's little events like this... This is, in fact, the first time in my life that I've ever seen such a thing, and I've been through a lot of elections. Next thing: "Proud liberal" T-Shirts....
Good signs that people might be a little embarrassed by Chimpy/McCrashcart. While they still may vote for the little bastard they aren't gonna advertise that they are idiots. Not so loud and proud.

Another Car Bomb Another Minister YAIMEVBCB

I have been thinking about setting up a special template for these stories. Starting with the title:YAIMVBCB (yet another iraqi minister vaporized by car bomb) or YAIMEVBCB (yet another iraqi minister escapes vaporization by car bomb) From Reuters an example of the latter involving the Justice minister.
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraq's justice minister escaped unscathed but five bodyguards were killed when a suicide car bomber drove into his convoy in an attack claimed by a group led by al Qaeda ally Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

Statements posted on an Islamist Web site said the attack was one of two carried out on Saturday by the military wing of Zarqawi's Tawhid and Jihad group, blamed by Washington for a series of deadly suicide bombings in Iraq and for executing at least three hostages.

Witnesses said the attacker drove toward the convoy close to the home of Justice Minister Malik al-Hassan and detonated his car bomb in a ball of flame.

"There was a blast alongside the convoy. A booby-trapped car came alongside and blew up," said traffic policeman Hussein Abed. The Health Ministry said five bodyguards were killed.

Five gutted cars were littered across the road, and Iraqis collected human remains scattered among the wreckage.
First we fired everyone who was a member of the Baath party (never mind that most of these people had little or no choice, and little or no loyalty to Saddam), then we shitcan the army (but feel free to keep your guns, neverminding that outside of Saddam's Preatorian Guard, most of the conscripts had no loyalty to Saddam). When I first heard of these directives from the Bremenator, my first thought was that we better fix shit tout de suite, or we might have a bit of trouble waiting for us down the road. But what do I know, I never thought there was any reason to invade Iraq in the first place. Once we did, however, I could never have imagined the level of incompetence under which the occupation would be run, (little did I knw that the CPA would be staffed by Heritage foundation rejects) and I have a very active imagination.

It is heartening to see that the Bremenator does have a sense of
"The greatest regret has to be that we were not able to get the security situation under better control by the end of the occupation," said Bremer.

Bobby We Hardly Knew ya.

From the Detroit Free Press we find that the mercurial chess genious Bobby Fisher, has been arrested in Japan, and not for marajuana, but for a fake passport. I remember the buzz surrounding his crowning as world champion when he beat Spassky in 75. I remember that he kind of vanished off of the radar screen. I am suprised that I never was aware of the following, as I generally would pay attention to any news about Fisher. Not necessarily a chess geek there was something in Fisher's story that appealed to me.
TOKYO -- In a bizarre endgame, U.S. chess master Bobby Fischer was taken into custody after trying to fly out of Japan with an invalid passport.

Wanted at home for attending a 1992 match in what was then Yugoslavia, violating international sanctions, Fischer managed to stay one move ahead of the law by living abroad and being sheltered by chess devotees. State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said Friday that it was not yet determined whether the United States would ask that Fischer be turned over to U.S. authorities.

After that, he lived in secret outside the United States. He emerged in 1992 to confront Spassky again in Yugoslavia. Fischer beat Spassky and won $3.35 million.

The U.S. government said by playing the match, Fischer violated UN sanctions against Yugoslavia, imposed for Serb leader Slobodan Milosevic's role in fomenting war in the Balkans.
I don't know about you, but I am not upset about the location of a classic rematch, whether or not it violates U.N. sanctions. I reserve that anger for something much more maddening-Did Halliburton violate U.N Sanctions and make deals with Saddam. And while on the subject of sanctions, is not Israel in violation of a few. It just seems ridiculous that a private individual could be charged with violation of U.N. santions. Heads of States, CEO's of corporations, sure. A dude playing a game of chess-mmmm-not so sure.

Deja Vu all over again

Corrente shows us the parallels between our scatching around in the catbox that is the middle east, and our mid eighties extra-curricular activities in Latin America. A sample below, but really should read the whole thing.
Say, has anyone noticed that Bush has decided to fight a dirty war against 1.5 billion Muslims?
Just asking....

Bush has taken Ollie North's "covert, off-the-shelf" operations capability off the shelf, and He's using it to run a dirty war in the Middle East. Let's connect a few dots:

(1) dirty war kingpin Negroponte being appointed ambassador to the current Iraqi state,

(2) CIA creature Allawi shooting six insurgents in the head, immediately following his appointment the estimable Mr. Caulfield is all over this one; and Orcinus), whereupon Negroponte does a superb Sergeant Schulz imitation,

(3) the general who ran the torture wing at Abu Ghaib being put in charge of intelligence training (back here)

(4) an extra-constitutional chain of command ("Decoding the handwriting of The Fog Machine"

(5) spending that is not controlled by Congressional authority.

Doesn't this start to look exactly like the Latin American dirty wars that "our" government fought in the Reagan era? Sure looks like it to me. The same players, the same extra-constitutional techniques, the same goals.

Meanwhile at Kos it looks like we can expect to get a lot more litter under our fingernails.
US sets sights on toppling Iran regime
By Michael Binyon and Bronwen Maddox

Re-elected Bush would act to foment revolt, says senior official
THE US will mount a concerted attempt to overturn the regime in Iran if President Bush is elected for a second term.

It would work strenuously to foment a revolt against the ruling theocracy by Iran's "hugely dissatisfied" population, a senior official has told The Times.

We won't use guns, just our venerable Fomentation machine. This fantastic device, housed in a bunker at Groom Lake Nevada, helped us install the Shah of Iran, Helped Saddam when we needed him, Pinochet, started showing signs of age in Nicaragua, but its crowning achievement was "Mr Gorbachev tear down this wall" What Peggers Noonan will refuse to concede is that the Fomentation machine also had considerable influence as a speech writer in the Reagan White House. George seems to think that the old girl, in her fondness for Persian cuisine, has one more revolution left in her.

Friday, July 16

They will Try Anything

Bartcop brought this to my attention
You have to give the right-wingers credit. The fear tactics they learned from arch-Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels remain at the front of their political playbook. First, they put out the notion that in the event of a terrorist attack around the time of the November 2 election, a postponement of the vote may be necessary. Second, they start talking about the Federal government’s response to such a scenario. It’s the second item we must all be focused upon.
Yes the second item indeed, lets have a look shall we.
If the pre-election internal tracking polls and public opinion polls show the Kerry-Edwards ticket leading in key battleground states, the Bush team will begin to implement their plan to announce an imminent terrorist alert for the West Coast for November 2 sometime during the mid afternoon Pacific Standard Time. At 2:00 PST, the polls in Kentucky and Indiana will be one hour from closing (5:00 PM EST – the polls close in Indiana and Kentucky at 6:00 PM EST). Exit polls in both states will be known to the Bush people by that time and if Kentucky (not likely Indiana) looks too close to call or leaning to Kerry-Edwards, the California plan will be implemented. A Bush problem in Kentucky at 6:00 PM EST would mean that problems could be expected in neighboring states and that plans to declare a state of emergency in California would begin in earnest at 3:00 PM PST.

Now some might complain that these are the ravings of a wacky conspiracy theorist, and truth be told they might be. What you must consider is what this administration could stand to loose if they cannot keep the White House, House, and Senate. They could be facing hot seats at the Hague. Just go read the thing for yourself.

Preznit Projection

Apparently he's a tour de France fan (As long as fellow Texan Lance Armstrong is winning). From ESPN comes the following.

ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE -- President Bush predicted Friday that Lance Armstrong will win the Tour de France -- and added with a smile that he will triumph in his own race for re-election.

Bush fed his new passion for bicycling by watching the Tour on Air Force One's TV screens, rooting for fellow Texan Armstrong during a punishing stage through the Pyrenees mountains.

Asked by The Associated Press whether he thought Armstrong would pull off a record-breaking sixth straight tour win, Bush flashed two thumbs-up.

"He's going to win and I'm going to win," Bush said en route to Florida and West Virginia -- two critical states in re-election campaign.

"There's no need to worry about either race any more," Bush said with a wave of his hands and a grin.

Armstrong finished second in Friday's stage, leaving main rival Jan Ullrich struggling behind. He advanced the from sixth to second in the overall standings.
Ok Friends, no need to hold election 'cause Lance is going to vote for us all. Now did I miss a memo or something. The image of that grinning simian, thumbs up, secure in the knowledge that he'll get 4 more years......

Security shmecurity.

We can't manage to protect stockpiles of nukular materials in Iraq but here in murica... Uhm No we cant protect Nuclear secrets here. But that really shouldn't suprise us. If only we had Columbo running the FBI and Spock running the Justice department. At Los Alamos it seems that we are having a little bit of trouble keeping our secrets, well, secret.
JULY 16, 2004 (COMPUTERWORLD) - For at least the third time since 2000, two removable computer disks containing classified nuclear weapons data are missing from the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico.

That damn Klintoon must be behind this is what I'm thiking, he must have used his hypnotic penis powers to keep the republicans busy with gay marriage amendments while Osama slipped one past the Goalie.

In an announcement last Friday, the lab confirmed that "two items of Classified Removable Electronic Media (CREM) were discovered missing from the Weapons Physics Directorate" inside the lab on July 7 during a special inventory being done for an upcoming experiment. The two disks didn't turn up in several searches, which are continuing, according to the lab.

G. Peter Nanos, director of the lab, said in a statement that a "full inquiry into how and why this has occurred" is under way. "I intend to exercise my authority as director to hold those involved fully accountable, up to and including termination of employment, if appropriate.

So many investigations so little time.

Well I was Wrong-partly

Mayo didn't have the guns to take back that much time from his rivals. Lance was in good form, finishing just behind stage winner Ivan Basso, and moving into 2nd place in the General classification . Jan Ullrich (2nd in last years tour) lost time as did Tyler Hamilton, who fell to 20th. Levi Leipheimer moved into 12th position over-all, and Bobby Julich remained in 17th. As expected however Hincapie and Landis fell to 41st and 42nd respectively, after carrying water for Lance on the first climb and beginning of the last climb. Below is the profile for today's stage.

Image Hosted by

Contrast this to tomorrow, when the battle will truly begin. Ouch. Gotta love France in July. One of these days I might even be able to watch it live.

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Meet the new Boss, Same as the old Boss

From the Sidney Morning Herald it would appear that Iraq has a strongman in the saddle of sovereignty (michelle makes me do it). I can just see our fine leader in a jealous fit as he lovingly carresses Saddam old pistol "Can't we ammend the Constitution to let me do that" while "jenny's got a gun" plays in the background.

Iyad Allawi, the new Prime Minister of Iraq, pulled a pistol and executed as many as six suspected insurgents at a Baghdad police station, just days before Washington handed control of the country to his interim government, according to two people who allege they witnessed the killings.

They say the prisoners - handcuffed and blindfolded - were lined up against a wall in a courtyard adjacent to the maximum-security cell block in which they were held at the Al-Amariyah security centre, in the city's south-western suburbs.

They say Dr Allawi told onlookers the victims had each killed as many as 50 Iraqis and they "deserved worse than death".

The Prime Minister's office has denied the entirety of the witness accounts in a written statement to the Herald, saying Dr Allawi had never visited the centre and he did not carry a gun.

And thanks to Holden for the heads up.

Bloggers new goodies.

I'm sure that any of you that use blogger have discovered, they went and added some new features to their interface. Lots of Java-scriptly goodness, a new way to link to things, imagehosting, and other formatting tools, including spellcheck. I'm sure I'll like it at some point, And while this may appear to be an examination of quality of teeth of a gifted horse, it is not. Why? 'Cause I say so. Oh and by the way it just seems like it takes forever to publish, as the progress bar circles endlessly on, but you can ignore it because-well lets just say that the progress bar is only now an approximation of the truth, at least on this particular setup.

Anyway there seems to be some scary shit afoot that needs some documentating. So on to the battlefields of blogistan we must go. In the meantime check out "new boss same as the old boss".

Which I plan to cover in more detail.

Dog, Tortuga, Man?

"It does not affect your daily life very much if your neighbor marries a box turtle. But that does not mean it is right..."

And the Calvinist wing of funditopia, maintains kind of a scary obsession with bestiality, or any sexual practice that is in the 99th percentile.

"Cornyn's press secretary says the quote was part of the prepared speech, but never delivered.
As a devotee of "The West Wing" I can only assume that an advance copy of the speach was given to the press, whither hook or crook matters not. I can credit the audible, losing the line in anticipation
that it wouldn't work the croud, but the leak has roveided much laughter in Blogistan. So what is it that makes Republicans Politicians so crazy about sex and marriage....?

Thursday, July 15

No he didn't

WTF via Corrente

"The last sign of a defeated and intellectually bankrupt party is a hate-filled strategy of caricature assassination," said Jonathan Grella, a DeLay spokesman.
You just really can't make this up, you just can't, and I'm still not sure, but the AP is shoveling and I am presently pleased, to propagate. Projection, modus vivendi of the party of caricature. Teehee

The Tour is about to heat up

Image Hosted by With the tour heading to the pyrenees tommorow, the stage 12 finish at La Mongie promises to separate the men from the boys. We will have a much better idea who the likely podium candidates will be. Six Americans presently occupy spots in the top 24 of the overall general classification, Armstrong, Hamilton, Hincapie, Julich, Leipheimer, and Landis. Hincapie is likely to loose time tomorrow for two reasons: He will be charged with working his ass off for Armstrong when they hit the first climb of the day, the Col d'Aspin, and if he has any juice left, on the following climb up Gripp. Landis who will also be charged with the same duties but will probably be held in reserve for the final climb, the charge up La Mongie. Hamilton, Leipheimer, and Julich all serve in the capacity of team leaders, like Armstrong, and will be protected until the action really gets underway.

The biggest jump in the classification should come from Iban Mayo, presently in 51st. The Basque climber finished 6th in last years tour and recently beat Armstrong in the Dauphiné Libéré in mid June. He is a phenominal climber and as he is 15 minutes behind the leaders he may be given the opportunity to escape. Did I mention that he is Bassque and tomorrows stage finishes in the pyrenees, should be good for a couple of minutes. Expect Ulrich, and Hamilton to slide comfortably into the top ten and Armstrong into the top three. I always get the shivers as the tour hits the mountains for the first time-WoooHoooo

Return of Dogzilla

Bilmon has some commentary about the florida felon purge.
But by now you really have to wonder: How long Jeb Bush would be able to stay off the Florida felon list himself if he wasn't the brother of the president and a member of one of the most powerful political dynasties the country has ever seen. I mean, when your kid tells you the dog ate his homework once, you might not believe it, but you might give him/her the benefit of the doubt. But twice?
Kinda reminds me of another Bush brush with the dog of convenience.

In other news: Ditka is out and the Illinois GOP are considering enlisting the Motor City MadMan, as they continue their attempts to find the foot that will fit the glass slipper. You can find out more here For your entertainment, a sample of madmanly goodness
Labeling himself "Rosa Parks with a guitar and a middle finger," Nugent has adopted defense of the confederate flag as a personal cause. Attacking the NAACP following its call for an economic boycott of South Carolina until it removed the confederate flag from its statehouse, Nugent promised, "Those politically correct motherf---ers can take the flag down but I am going to wear it forever."
Gotta luv the Nuge.

Over at Kos, Gryn fills us in on the beginning of the rest of the story (attempting to channel Paul Harvey) and it is not pretty, friends. Not that this is a suprise to anyone who has been paying attention, but it looks like the other shoe is finally going to drop.
"The worst is the soundtrack of the boys shrieking,"
I'll just leave it at that. (hanging head in shame)

Wednesday, July 14

Why does Michelle Malkin Hate Baby Jesus

Over at World o' Crap
Add the flag of the Philippines to the International Hall of Appeasers. Sign this pitiful nation up for a lifetime membership to the Axis of Weasels. And remind me never again to brag about the proud fighting spirit of my ancestors.
Wow. Casting away all allegeance to a doubtless proud and ancient ancestry. I guess you have to prove your street credentials as a patriot.
Is it really necessary to consign your ancestry to the trashpile of personal history and insult a country that has been a traditional ally. You had no problem with Marcos?

I never thought I'd say this, but I'm deeply, mortifyingly ashamed of my parents' native land.
Well Michelle, it's your right to discount the entire history of your ancestors, because the Phillipines decided to take their Iraqi marbles home, rather than stay in a protracted disaster that is the fault, ultimately of one little Man. Not that they had any say in the equation that led to this point. But I guess since you fell for all the crap fed to you by the NeoCons and ChickenHawk AssHats, you'd rather dump your entire heritage. If only I could follow your lead Michelle.

If only I knew from which African Country 3/8th of my genetic material came from. Sierra Leone? I could curse them for the scourge of bloody diamonds and internecine warfare. Gabon, Cameroon, Cote D'Ivoir, get the picture Michelle. I guess I could disavow the Swedish 1/2 of my ancestry for their lack of participation in Juniors wonderfull adventure. My mother's, mother's, mother who was Cherokee, well I guess we don't have them to kick around anymore.
The Battling Bastards of Bataan have given way to the Mollycoddling Milksops of Manila.
Michelle, I have to admit an alacrity for alliteratude myself. This sentence, supplies it to stunning effect, I genuflect to your grandiose genious.
Love, Kent.

While Rome Burned......

In this upcoming article in the next issue of US News & World Report on the Taguba Report documenting the abuses at Abu Ghraib we discover that the place was a disaster.
The abuses took place, the files show, in a chaotic and dangerous environment made even more so by the constant pressure from Washington to squeeze intelligence from detainees. Riots, prisoner escapes, shootings, corrupt Iraqi guards, unsanitary conditions, rampant sexual misbehavior, bug-infested food, prisoner beatings and humiliations, and almost-daily mortar shellings from Iraqi insurgents--according to the annex to General Taguba's report, that pretty much sums up life at Abu Ghraib.
Now imagine for a minute that you are in charge of the country and that you have taken it to war on false pretense, well you hope that the pretense isn't false, but deep down You know. Now it is October and the insurgency that is spiriling out of control, is beginning to make this adventure-how shall we say-not so rosey. You need information and you need it now 'cause just six months ago you were astride an aircraft carrier (like a colossus) announcing to the world that your mission was accomplished. You know that your only hope is to root out all of those "dead enders" that your Secretary of War keeps talking about. Because you have taken it as an article of faith that this isn't a full blown insurgency. Just a few terrorists and Baathist thugs, and once you convince some of these folks you have locked up in prison to tell you where the bad guys are, everything will be fine. You have entered the Twilight Zone.
Weak leadership in the prison meant soldiers couldn't accomplish basic tasks, like feeding their detainees. Without a clear chain of command, especially after Sanchez informed Karpinski that military intelligence authorities would assume responsibility for running a key area of Abu Ghraib where Iraqis were detained for interrogation, some soldiers just ran wild. "One of the tower guards was shooting prisoners with lead balls and a slingshot," a company commander testified. Karpinski, in her interview with Taguba, said some soldiers likened the place to "the wild, wild West." Soldiers ran around in civilian clothes and covered latrines with so much graffiti a commander had them painted black. An Army captain photographed female subordinates showering in outside stalls while private contractors smuggled beer into the prison.
It would be difficult at best to make this stuff up. If you are so inclined theres lots more where this came from at the link above. Six pages more. Can I have my country back, pretty please.

Is your Senator a Bigot

From Holden, guest posting at Atrios via Ntodd is a list of the votes in the Senate for the Federal Marriage Ammendment.
"Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman. Neither this Constitution, nor the constitution of any state, shall be construed to require that marriage or the legal incidents thereof be conferred upon any union other than the union of a man and a woman."
Thats the text that they want to attach to the Constitution. 48 bigot supporting senators can be found here.

UPDATE: Billmon has more on this here
Still, it was a nice little victory for those of us who still care about equal protection under the law (although the AP coverage obviously hasn't done much good for the wire service's credibility, which is already suffering from the "Nedra Picker" effect.) And, as Howard the Whore Fineman - of all people - points out, Frist's incompetent handling of the floor manuevering allowed Kerry and Edwards to avoid the trap the Rovians thought they were laying by scheduling this vote. Oh well. We all know the Bushies prefer loyalty to incompetence, and that's exactly what they got when they put Bill Frist in charge of the Senate: a loyal incompetent.

Strawberry Eating Cat

Here. Please check it out. I'm not kidding

When you're finished with the strawberry eating cat please take a look at this fine anti-bush advertisement here. You'll be happy if you go. I'll see if I can't dig up a little more humor, 'cause I need some today.

The Serenety of the Sovereign State

Attackers Kill Governor of Iraqi City of Mosul. Thanks to Rorschach
for the heads up regarding the latest in Iraq. From Reuters
Wed Jul 14, 2004 11:37 AM ET
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Attackers killed the governor of the Iraqi city of Mosul Wednesday as he was driving in a convoy of vehicles toward Baghdad, an Interior Ministry source said.

The assailants threw a grenade at the governor's vehicle and fired automatic weapons, the source said.
What can I say. This was absolutely unnecesary, more blood on our hands. There is more. From Juan Cole
Reuters reports that guerrillas killed at least 7 persons with a car bomb at the entrance of the Green Zone (which houses US and interim Iraqi government personnel.

The head of Iraq's Olympic committee, Ahmad al-Hajiya, barely escaped being killed by a roadside bomb in Baghdad on Tuesday.

The Zarqawi group took credit for beheading a Bulgarian hostage.
Can somebody please explain why we went into Iraq again-yeah I know.

All the FOX that's Fit to Print

has the whole kit and kaboodle of memo-y goodness from FOX news chief John Moody. A whole year starting 5/9/03 and ending 5/5/04. If you want to know how Fox messaged the message-I mean news head over for a gander.
We'll have to devote some time to the tornadoes, simply out of respect to the magnitude of damage they did. [sic]Let's spend a good deal of time on the battle over judicial nominations, which the President will address this morning. Nominees who both sides admit are qualified are being held up because of their POSSIBLE, not demonstrated, views on one issue -- abortion. This should be a trademark issue for FNC today and in the days to come.
I'm shocked, shocked to find out that FOX might not be as fair and balanced as they clame. At least they felt it necesarry to do a small bit on tornado, ya know out of respect, before hammering on the democrats who are what, did I get that right, are using abortion as a litmus test for judicial nominees.
on the 2nd of june 2003We have good perp walk video of Eric Rudolph which we should use. We should NOT assume that anyone who supported or helped Eric Rudolph is a racist. No one's in favor of murder or bombing of public places. But feelings in North Carolina may just be more complicated than the NY Times can conceive. Two style notes: Rudolph is charged with bombing an abortion clinic, not a "health clinic." and
Its always nice to show a perpwalk when we have good footage. And its nice to be reminded that no one should assume that one is a racist without proof, nor that anyone should cheer the murder or bombing of public places even if they aren't so public "abortion clinics". Its also nice to see the backhanded slap of sensitivity
fox has North Carolina and the NYT. Oh and there is so much more.
From: John Moody
Date: 3/23/2004


Attention mice: the cat is back.
(My thanks to Ken and David for filling in.)
Now I can feel better that the guy in the wheelchai that they took out with a helicopter gunship was not a "spiritual leader" now I can sleep at night

Quit kissing the asses of our guests-kay.

We will be on full alert for Hamas retaliation for Yassin's precipitious departure, both in Israel and the US. Hamas's vow of vengeance must be taken seriously.

The so-called 9/11 commission has already been meeting. In fact, this is the eighth session. The fact that former Clinton and both frmer and current Bush administration officials are testifying gives it a certain tension, but this is not "what did he know and when did he know it" stuff. Do not turn this into Watergate. Remember the fleeting sense of national unity that emerged from this tragedy. Let's not desecrate that.
Protect Dear leader from any implication of impropriety-this is not watergate and if we repeat it enough it cant possibly be true. Yeah I remember that sense of National unity actually I kind of remember it was a worldwide phenominon, before the bullies on the beltway started playing cowboys and indians. Yeah lets not forget that Dear leader told the rest of the world to cheney themselves.

Yassin's assassination took the spotlight off Pakistan, but operations there continue. We'll make full use of Palkot and Harrigan from Afghansitan.

And there's the Kobe hearing, which we'll preview. The accuser, whose personal past is now a matter of public conjecture, is likely to testify this week.

2004-03-24, John Moody
Now that all of that gossipy goodness has been let out of the bag, lets consider the combat credentials of Kobe's Little Big Man. Its great to have a big black penis to envy.

We can't let Fox Juggernaut Bill O'Liely off the hook either in todays all Fox All the Time Blog installment part Two. From The Nation via the Atrios way comes a startling revelation about how O'Liely Spins the news
I was impressed. O'Reilly, who had announced his show as the "No Spin Zone," was actually playing a balanced soundbite, one that accurately reported the commission's findings both that there was no evidence linking Saddam and 9/11, and that there was some evidence of contacts (if no "collaborative relationship") between Saddam and Al Qaeda. Maybe all those nasty things Al Franken had said about O'Reilly weren't true after all.

But suddenly O'Reilly interrupted, plainly angry, and said, "We can't use that.... We need to redo the whole thing." Three minutes of silence later, the show began again, with O'Reilly re-recording the introduction verbatim. Except this time, when he got to the part about Kean, he played no tape, and simply paraphrased Kean as confirming that "definitely there was a connection between Saddam and Al Qaeda." The part about no link to 9/11 was left on the cutting-room floor.
I'm shocked, shocked, to find out that there is spinning going on in this establishment. Please tell me it isn't true David. I can't wrap my mind around the fact that the most honest man in television, a talented award winning (2 peabody awards,no,wait-make that polk award, and I didn't even win one of those-my old show did when they hired some real journalist-I know its relative)
OK so maybe not award winning, but just damn good journalistic integritude having guy.
But then I decided to go one step further: "It seems to me like the pot calling the kettle black, Bill, because I just sat here five minutes ago as you re-recorded the introduction to this show to take out a statement from the head of the 9/11 commission stating that there was no evidence of a link between Saddam Hussein and 9/11."

Apparently O'Reilly does not like being called "the pot." He exploded, repeatedly called me an "S.O.B." and assured me that he would cut my accusation from the interview when the show aired. He also said I would "never ever" be on his show again. At this point, I wasn't sure whether to take that as a threat or a promise.

Sure enough, when The O'Reilly Factor aired later that night, both Thomas Kean's statement about 9/11 and my charge about O'Reilly deleting it were missing.
Again I find myself astonished to discover that O'Liely might have a thin skin. Unfreakinbelievable amount of arrogance. None of the shit posted above should be a suprise, but it sure is nice to have the worst of my suspicions documented. Flatulent Gassbags indeed.

Tuesday, July 13

We should Hang our Heads in Shame

Why in the name of humanity, do we let this continue.

Sudan: Darfur region

AL-JUNAYNAH, 13 Jul 2004 (IRIN) - Four months after the Darfur crisis in Sudan was described by the UN as the "world’s worst humanitarian disaster", tens of thousands of people in the state of Western Darfur still live without shelter or sanitation, receive no food aid and have to drink contaminated water.

One aid worker described the situation to IRIN as "a disaster waiting to happen".
I can't help but wonder what President Gore would have done. One, we would not have been led on a terrorist snipe hunt in Iraq (providing that the plot for 9/11 had not been foiled by the increased focus that his administration would have had vis a vis Bin Laden). If 9/11 had taken place under his watch, we would probably be rejoicing in a newly minted democratically elected gubmint in Afganistan, Bin Laden on trial at the Hauge, and gearing up for re-election. Yes, Saddam would still be in contained in Iraq , and a lot of our Blood and treasure would still be with us. I also believe that we would be spearheading a peacekeeping responce to this genocidal extermination going on in the Sudan. And we would have retained the moral authority and Allies to do so. But no no no, we are bogged down with an illegal occupation, which retains the focus of the world.
Conditions in Western Darfur are such that many of the aid workers are themselves falling sick.

Delayed access to the state and logistical problems have meant that getting staff, equipment and basic aid into the area - the most inaccessible of the three Darfur states - has been extremely difficult.

But more needs to be done to save people’s lives, say aid workers; there have only been two food distributions to date, the latest one with reduced rations. Tens of thousands of IDPs have received no food or shelter items at all and are cramped under bits of bramble, leaves, sticks and dry grass - and the rainy season has already begun. Many are drinking "pea-green" water and scrounging to survive on mukhayt - a berry that takes three days to prepare and gives diarrhoea.
Brilliant, the most widely available food source takes 3 days to prepare and results in diarrhoea, in an area that lacks a sustainable potable water supply, thats a nice slow way to die, can cholera be far behind? Aid workers falling prey to the conditions can only mean that we have a real disaster on our hands. Its really too bad that we don't give a shit about black people. The day that we get to wipe that smirk off of Bush's face and that sneer off of that piece of crap Cheney's Mug will be a great day indeed.

"Bullies attack and leaders inspire."

This quote from Teresa Hienz-Kerry is bound to cause some cranial implosion in Freeperville.
Heinz Kerry continued, "We need, above all, a president who is not fazed by complexity. A president who likes to read. A president who loves history. A president who is rightly proud of the sacrifice of our ancestors."
These quotes will inspire a pleathora af vicious attacks from the wingnut Pundit brigade. How they will manage to fire their braodsides without without appearing to be the bullies they are will doubtless be the subject of much observations in blogistan in the coming days. I personally hope that Billmon choosed to riff on this.
"bullies attack and leaders inspire" Wow. A perfectly distilled message, and one that will get continued airplay. Simple enough for an idiot to understand. I was trying to think of one inspiring message that has come out of the white house that would resonate with an ordinary person in this country and all I could come up with is.........nothing. When I say "ordinary person" I mean someone who is not particularly partisan, and someone who probably has not benifited from the economic "growth" that dear leader keeps talking about.

I remember (barely) watching Niel Armstrong decsending the stairs of the lunar landing module Eagle. Amazing and only made possible by someone who could inspire us to do "that which is hard" and asked of us "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country". A message of hope and inspiration, a message of inclusion and spirit. A message diametrically opposed to the one coming out of this whitehouse. While many found the message of Reagan inspirational, (I did not) it was a message that appealed in some ways to the worst in us. Pandering to our feers, and our need to feel superior about ourselves. It was a message of division which had wide appeal among members of the population not accustomed to having the jaws of greed nipping away at the heels of their economic stability. Thus began the worship of wealth as the highest form of patriotic activity. Accompaning this was the dramatic reduction in the quality of political discourse.

Now the present administration has nothing but attack as political strategy and it is unlikely to find an inspiring message, and the harder they try the more transparent they become. As the petty veneer of integritude dissolves slowly before our eyes, we will recognize in him something many of us feared on the playgrounds so many years ago. "ya know what-those guys remind me of the bastards who stole my lunch money every day" when we get to this point-game over.

Keep swinging away Teresa

This is good one from BlondeSence. Fun with the Bible. I plan to expand upon the fun later. And below another item harvested from and is worthy of future riffing.

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Santorum be thy name

This is just a bit too funny. It speaks for itself. Attaboy Attaturk.

Fun with Constitutional Package adjustment

From the comments at Atrios Jennifer posts
On second thought....

Even though the Republican committee chairmen will never let anything out of committee for a floor vote, wouldn't it be fun if the Dems would highlight the stupidity of the all-too-frequent Republican desire to amend the Constitution (for stupid reasons) by proposing a few amendments of their own? For starters:

The Boxer Underwear Amendment: Since men suffering from infertility are advised to wear boxers instead of briefs, and God commanded us to "be fruitful and multiply," this amendment will prohibit all types of men's underwear other than boxers.
All I can add is a preference for boxer-briefs. I like the support of briefs without the bunching. Makes riding a bike a lot nicer.

The Long Tresses Amendment: The Bible claims that a woman's hair is her "crowning glory," this amendment will respect God's will by prohibiting women from cutting or coloring their hair.

Once we've satisfied God by writing all of his likes and dislikes into the Constitution, we can move on to the more secular irritants that nonetheless threaten the future of our great nation:

The Only-Squeeze-the-Tootpaste-From-The-End-of-the-Tube Amendment: This will prevent waste of toothpaste, thereby strengthening our economy. Plus, it will be one less source of friction for people who live together and share toothpaste.

The Over-Not-Under Method of Hanging the Toilet Paper Roll Amendment: Because everyone knows this is how it should be done.

The Wipe-From-Front-to-Back Amendment: For women's health reasons. Also, because God doesn't like it when we get feces on our genitals - otherwise, he wouldn't hate gay people.

I'm sure all of you can think of other crucial changes that must be made to our Constitution if we are to survive as a nation. If we don't spell out everthing right there in the Constitution, chaos will reign and Jeebus will be upset.
Well done Jennifer. Bonus points awarded for bringing Jeebus into the picture. I can never get enough of the image of Homer with a frog in one hand, microphone in the other, eyes spinning, and asking "is that you Jeebus"

Republican Money DoublePlusGood-Democratic money=EVIL

Billomon has got some observations on class warfare, a subject that has long been of interest to me.
We all know how agitated the Republicans get whenever their opponents deviate from the "New Democrat" script and start talking about the enormous, and growing, divide between the superwealthy and average American family.
Yeah Im thinkin' "bowel-evacuating panic" seems to be the response to challenges to the script. I just hope I live long enough to see these heels tossed into the street. At least I can dream. Anyhoo head on over if so inclined and check back later to see what I have opined.
p.s. BEP courtesy of The Rude One.

If We don't find the next Donkey Bar I tell you we must Die

The Man-Dog Turtle humping menace. The Republican members of Senate Ran in to a spot of bother when their best laid plans were laid to waste, by those pesky kids, I mean Democrats. From the Wall Street Journal via Atrios
Faced with the likelihood of falling far short of the two-thirds majority needed to amend the Constitution, some Senate Republicans were pushing for a chance to vote on an alternative that stated simply that marriage exists only between a man and a woman.
Democrats declined to support this effort realizing that The Pubbies were going to get their ass handed to them and recognized the attempt to change the rules of the game to limit their shame. Ha freakin Ha-dumbfucks. Americablog
shares with us this analysis
The pro-gay Senators caught the anti-gay Republicans (plus Zell Miller) by surprise by saying "sure, you want a vote, we'll give you a vote." Why did the good guys offer a vote? Because apparently there are so FEW Senators willing to vote for the amendment that it would totally embarrass the homophobes once the final tally was in. So the phobes are instead forcing a procedural vote called "invoking cloture." All this really means is that the Senate votes to stop a filibuster on the bill - the thing is, no one is filibustering.
Rather than spend time working on substantive legislation that might help solve some of the difficult problems this country faces, instead of getting to the bottom of a lot of questionable Executive activities, Instead of a thousand more important things to do, the Republican Gay hating bigots want to throw there fundimentalist base a bone, and unfortunately for them realize that Codpiece Crusaders coattails are gonna be a little short this year. HA. Asshats. This article has more juicy bits
Senate Republicans prepared two versions of a constitutional amendment on marriage Monday, unable to agree among themselves on how best to get a vote on a measure that President Bush made an election-year priority for Congress.
Yeah thats it, we better have a back-up plan in case some of those still on the fence decide to run screaming from this odious piece of crap.
"There's been a considerable amount of debate and a lot of scholarly thought and a lot of constitutional experts that have been approached as far as what would be the best language," said Sen. Wayne Allard, R-Colo., who authored the original version.

Cheryl Jacques, president of the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest gay political organization, said the last-minute effort to get votes on two different versions reflected a lack of care in drafting the amendment.

"I think it is outrageous and frankly surreal that at the 11th hour in this debate, they are literally rewriting the Constitution on the back of a napkin," she said.
So the republicans now appreciate Scholarship and the input of "experts", that puts to rest any doubts that I had about their motives. It is just really too bad that they just can't dissapear the Constitution in one of those holding pins where they keep the off the book prisoners. Can't we just let Texas succeed from the union and let the folks that want it establish their Fundimentalist Theocracy down there and get off the rest of our backs?

E tu Brute

Steve makes some observations about the Dean Nader debate.

The problem is that it isn't alleged. The groups now openly announce their desire to help Nader get on the ballot.

Now, while away, I saw much of the Dean-Nader debate, and Nader came off second best. The thing is that Dean, having actually won elective office, was more able to deliver hammer blows against Nader's musty idealism.

But to me, this debate has gotten painfully simple: if you want to save Americans in Iraq, vote for Kerry. Not because he has some great anti-war stand, but because he isn't tied to Iraq the way Bush is.

Every vote for Nader is a vote to kill American soldiers in Iraq.

From Common Dreams The Nader "money shot"
Describing the threat of a second Bush term as "an extraordinary emergency," the man whose own candidacy shook up the Democratic establishment almost as much as has Nader's, declared, "When the house is on fire, it's not the time to fix the furniture." Sure, Dean admitted, he might have differences with Kerry on some issues. But he argued the "progressives must unite behind Kerry" line with passion.

Nader was unconvinced. At several points, the independent candidate read down a list of sharp shots at Kerry--"corporate clone," "lesser of two evils." And then he reminded the Vermonter that those were Dean's own words from the primary season.

Nader allowed as how he preferred "Howard Dean the First," who took on the party establishment last year, as opposed to "Howard Dean the Second," who he accused of carrying the establishment's water this year.

I was a big fan of the "corporate clone","lesser of two evils" argument that nader made about Gore in 2000. Yeah. No difference at all between a centrist long serving Democratic public servent versus the tax cutting, record setting (more people put to death-I mean cleansed from death row) right wing fascist-fundimentalist. It wasn't just the issue of the Federal courts and a possible SCOTUS nominee or two that terrified me about a Bush Preznitcy-though I did loose a bit of sleep over that, the idea that (I live in a college town with a big greek (panhellenic-i.e fraternity/sorority) population) a dumbass fratboy would bring his version of frat party date rapin integritude to office. I would just like to thank Ralph for "carrying the establishmental water" this year. I know its a tough job-but someone has to do it.

Monday, July 12

"Pickles Nicholson"

Dak at 3:36 am was the inspiration of this sickness and now I am afraid to go to sleep
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Holy cow-A Week Old

I have to pat the codpiece on the halo in celebration of a week of limited restraint as I find my voice in blogsphere.
Thanks to all that have visited undoubtedly running screaming in the opposite direction. I have been parked over at the eschaton following/poluting a number of threads. It seems that I can't help myself and old worries may haunt my dreams. Good night folks.

Sunday, July 11

Where'd I put that Baseball Bat?

I Caught the 60 minutes interview tonight and while it was a pleasure to see the exuberent Johns exuberating, and it was nice that they replayed that angry george clip when he answers a question about Edwards with "cheney can be president" or some such. The contrast between little boy blue and the John's was beatiful. But the point of this piece is that I don't have much patience for the mainstream media and there shameless whoremongery and quite frankly would like to have the opportunity to take Leslie out to the wood shed for a little learning. It is one thing to read about the heathers Yackin on about inexperience, but to actually see it with all of the little facial expressisions.....where'd I leave that bat again.

It was nice that in the end Andy Rooney (a WWII vet) a man who has vexated me from time to time in the past decided to take the Heathers to the woodshed, the only problem is that he left his bat in the studio. It was nice that the Lesler introduced his beatdown with a pillow, and smiled awkwardly as she had to finish out the segment.

It was a kind (but not nearly enough) of sweet judgement.

Channeling Rush, Ann, and Sean

A legacy of St. Reagan

Reagan brought the party of Lincoln full circle. Reagan made it OK to hate fags, niggers, and poor people.(he had lots of help, but lent that grandfatherly goodness to the cause) He taught us that unions were evil, a socialist affront to capitalism and we applauded when he threw those vicious parasites-the aircraft flight controllers-out on their ear. He told us that Cadillac driving welfare queens, were like a swarm of boll weavels descending upon the cotton plantations of this great Union. A new breed of prospectors, mining the gold of every fertilized egg, whose degenerate behavior was an affront to family values. Homosexuals had created AIDS as a device to convert the rest of us to their ways, but it backfired, killing lots of them. So why should the government be interested in finding a cure.

Innefficiency destroyed the family farms, and Unions were responsible for factory closings. He made it perfectly clear for those of us still struggling to find the language, that victims were mostly responsible for their problems. You see the poor were responsible for their poverty. rape victims were oversexed women who "asked for it". That meant that it was OK to stop worrying about the problems of poverty. Reagan was the perfect figurehead to ease the transition from the "me generation" to the "me more" or "greed is good" generation. He said that it was OK to be a moneychanger in the temple because Jesus wasn't gonna knock over your tables as long as you had the means to join the club. Prior to my understanding of the code words, I had no idea how difficult life was for the wealthy. They needed to be exempted from the burden of taxation.
Likewise corporations had it really tough as well. It was obvious that Government regulation was keeping good corporations down. If we could just remove the boot of Government off of the neck of corporate America, we would all benefit. A rising tide lifts all boats, and we could see this before our own eyes as Cubans inspired by the siren song of prosperity, flocked to our shores in all manner of watercraft.

Reagan gave voice to the poor white people, rural and urban, who watched their farms foreclosed and their factories close. Rather than look above them, (at a newly emboldened class of Jesus approved junk bond moneychangers armed with the trickledown power of corporate welfare-Bentley driving corporate welfare queens if you will) their gaze was directed to the right, left, and below, they were shown their nemesis. According to Reagan there were millions of rich black moms driving Cadillacs they bought with welfare checks. He made it seem like you could become a millionare if you had a few kids and were lazy and didn't want to work. I remember being angry when I realized I lacked a uterus that I could mine for gold.
How could this be fair, thought the newly out of work urban and white poor, after all this is the land of the American dream and how dare some black mother get rich off of welfare.
The message to the middle class was that this new class enriched by your tax dollars ( those fat, black, Cadillac driving, love-chile-poppin chiselers) would no doubt be looking outside the ghetto for a place to live. That means they would be coming to lower property values in a theatre or neighbor hood near you.

He said it was OK to deal with terrorists, that when attacked it showed strength to run screaming out of Lebanon, and for anyone who had any doubts about the status of the shriveling manhood of state, that Grenada was a hornets nest of communists that were a threat to our way of life- despite appearances of a senior class football team kicking the shit out of a bunch of fourth graders (ok lets make that inner-city black fourth graders who were all 16 years old and very athletic for their age, looking not due to a physical mismatch, but because they were dumb)- and in so doing proved that we were a strong country that did not turn tail and run screaming like a bunch of girls from a monster in some bizarro world horror film. No it was morning in America-an early June, birds chirping, spring bloom-perfuming, kind of morning. As a country that still couldn't come to terms with its Vietnam related guilt, feelings of impotence, growing sense of division. We needed this uplifting message. Reagan gave aid and confort to class warriors while making the discussion of class war concepta non grata. He ushered in the age of responsibility ( code word for poor people who by their own actions proved unable to find their bootstraps), and family values (code for gays and other degenerates).

Reagan told us that judges were not up to the job and that their hands should be tied by congressionally approved mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines. He had the foresight to recognize that in the future, the spawn of the welfare queens was a threat not only to our suburban neighborhoods but to the foundations of our democracy. He also knew that after the welfare queens had destroyed the family farms and industrial capacity, that good white people would need good paying jobs running the privatized prisons and mechanized army's of the future. He said that we should be scared enough to part with large amounts of tax dollars for missile defense and supermax prison construction, but not too scared-except of lots of black and Mexican boogymen- to keep borrowing and spending for the good of the economy. Borrow and spend was the proper way to manage the economy. He told us that Liberals had destroyed the country with their tax and spend ways. This was the vision of America that "tore down that wall", a message of inclusion and hope.
A message sustained by the son of his great vice president. Truly a message of "love thyself, your neighbor can take care of himself". Mourning in America. Indeed.