Saturday, September 25

Two Faced Bastard

What liberal media?

According to the NYT, CBS has shelved a report on Iraq, that will not be broadcast until after the election. You know, cause it might hurt the reelection chances of dear leader. Via Atrios.
CBS said last night that the report on the war would not run before Nov. 2.

"We now believe it would be inappropriate to air the report so close to the presidential election," the spokeswoman, Kelli Edwards, said in a statement.

Ms. Edwards said that the report had been scheduled for June but that it was postponed because of additional news on the subject.
According to the Newsweek report, the "60 Minutes" segment was to have detailed how the administration relied on false documents when it said Iraq had tried to buy a lightly processed form of uranium, known as yellowcake, from Niger. The administration later acknowledged that the information was incorrect and that the documents were most likely fake.

The Newsweek article said the segment was to have included the first on-camera interview with Elisabetta Burba, the Italian journalist who was given the fake documents and who provided them to a United States Embassy for verification. The documents were sent to Washington, where some officials embraced them as firm evidence that Iraq was aggressively trying to make nuclear weapons.
It would be innapropriate for the people to have this information, cause they might use it to evaluate the performance of the incumbent. Ignorance is strength, and a superior basis on which to cast a vote. Never let facts get in the way of Judgement.

Speaking of Banning Bibles

When the Republicans claim that Democrats will do anything to get elected, they are projecting, in the way a scumbag sees scumbags around every corner, like a thief, who refuses to trust anyone for fear of being robbed, like a liar who thinkds everyone traffics in falsehood. From the NYT via Steve Gilliard
he Republican Party acknowledged yesterday sending mass mailings to residents of two states warning that "liberals" seek to ban the Bible. It said the mailings were part of its effort to mobilize religious voters for President Bush.

The mailings include images of the Bible labeled "banned" and of a gay marriage proposal labeled "allowed." A mailing to Arkansas residents warns: "This will be Arkansas if you don't vote." A similar mailing was sent to West Virginians.

A liberal religious group, the Interfaith Alliance, circulated a copy of the Arkansas mailing to reporters yesterday to publicize it. "What they are doing is despicable,'' said Don Parker, a spokesman for the alliance. "They are playing on people's fears and emotions."
The mailing seeks to appeal to conservative evangelical Protestant pastors and political leaders who say they worry that legal rights for same-sex couples could lead to hate-crimes laws that could be applied against sermons of Bible passages criticizing homosexuality.

Conservative Christian political commentators often cite the case of Ake Green, a minister in Sweden who was jailed in June for a month for a sermon denouncing gays as sinful.

Mr. Parker, of the Interfaith Alliance, said, "I think it is laughable to think that someone could be arrested for reading out loud from the Bible.''

But Richard Land, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, argued, "We have the First Amendment in this country which should protect churches, but there is no question that this is where some people want to go, that reading from the Bible could be hate speech."

Still, Mr. Land questioned the assertion that Democrats might ban the whole Bible. "I wouldn't say it," he said. "I would think that is probably stretching it a bit far."
I am always impressed by the selective use of concepts like Moral Relativism and the Slippery Slope, by right wing ideologues who decry the employment as an argument against the war, but embace it as soon as the photos from Abu Ghraib appear on the scene. "Stretching it a bit far"? Please, If I were to suggest that many of your types are hellbent on the establishment of a theocratic government, or that George Bush is intentially trying to bankrupt the government, I would not be guilty of "stretching it a bit far". If I called GWB the spawn of satan, you might have a point. Might.

In any event, this is a tactic designed to get the knuckle dragging vote mobilized, whether the tactic is successfull or not, it reeks of desparation.

Town Hall via World 'O Crap.

They do the heavy lifting so We don't have to. I am in awe of the ability to visit and read the ramblings of the right wing nutjobs that make up the VRWC Echo chamber. For those with delusions of intellectual grandeur you can visit Town Hall. If you need your right wing talking points dumbed down a little, head on over to Instapundit. If you like your wingnut marinated with knuckle dragging appeals to the basest of your instincts, with pinch of bigotry, Republique´ Libéré might be the ticket If you need more knuckle dragging, with a steaming side of openly rascist commentary and a distinct hatred of all things arab or Islam, you will find a nice home at Little Green Footballs.

Enough of the lower forms of self delusional winger rhetoric, and historical revisionism and back to a game that started with "Why does Michell Malkin hate baby Jesus" something that I was inspired to write about when I came across an excerpt of one of her columns during a previous vist to W 'O C. This weeks game will involve smips from snips of columns that pack an enormity of falsehood in a small package, and we'll call it "WTF is wrong with this".
We'll start with the O'Rielly snip that inspired this game.
The reason the Times and some other liberal media operations continue to downplay Zarqawi and, indeed, the entire worldwide terror threat is twofold: first, the liberal press does not want another pre-emptive strike against terrorists like the one the USA launched against Iraq.
I don't really know where to start. The Times is a LMO? Ok, if you buy that I have a nice line of bridges and swampland available for your perusal. Zarqawi, isn't he the guy that bush didn't take out on three occasions .......I promised myself that I wouldn't do this. Who's next? Ahh yes, Selwyn Duke, doesn't that name have a born with a silver spoon in every orifice highborn sound to to it.
O'Leary's common-sense and sense of duty were trumped by her obsession with her brand of social-engineering. It reminds me of how the Nazis preferred to see Jewish scientists flee Germany or be killed rather than use them to further the war effort.
Pardon me but this seems to be loaded with projection, Godwins law be damned. Who's next? Paula Devlin.
Civilizations that become so enmeshed in regulations have collapsed because they no longer produced anything. We have become dominated by the chattering class: people without souls, ethics or productive abilities yet with enough unearned capital to control those who produce it.
Have know idea who or what she is talking about here. Next. Well actually we haven't been trolling the waters of Town Hall, but the pond called Carnival of the Wingnuts, lets head back to Town Hall where Mike Adams PhD (they hand those things out like beads at Mardi Gras, lets just say that Mike probably has a nice rack.

The New York Times (with the help of many of its affiliates) also intentionally distorts reality in a crusade against the war in Iraq.

They highlight our ill treatment of some Iraqi prisoners while downplaying Iraqi abuses of civil liberties. They highlight our failures in Iraq while downplaying our successes. They demoralize our troops while giving comfort and aid to our enemies. It is no exaggeration to say that some New York Times propagandists have the blood of our troops on their hands, and the spirit of our enemies in their hearts.

They highlight our lowlights and don't highlight Saddams lowlights, which were lower than our lowlights and took place many lowlights ago. That they would deign to highlight our lowlights (stuff happening on our watch) without comparing them to Saddams greatest hits of lowlights, (stuff that happened before we really gave a damn) well thats just treasonous. Next. Dennis Prager. I guess he doesn't have a PhD, but he has opinions about stuff.
In fact, since it lacks the self-control apparatus that is a major part of religion, the Left passes more and more laws to control people. That is why there is a direct link between the decline in Judeo-Christian religion and the increase in governmental laws controlling human behavior.

And that's one reason the Left hates the America represented by George W. Bush. This country under this president says morality is higher than man-made law.

Damn, this genius has us lillie livered liberals pegged. Malkin's got to be around here somewhere, there we go.
This is not a joke. A taxpayer-funded drill is using public school students to enforce anti-homeschooling bigotry under the guise of preparing for terrorism.

Terrorism by whom? By Islamic jihadists who hijack planes and incinerate kids headed to Disneyworld. Islamic terrorists who take hundreds of children hostage in Beslan, force them to drink their own urine and shoot babies in the back. Islamic terrorists who groom toddlers as suicide bombers.

Our enemies are Islamic extremist murderers.

Now as you might imagine that Michelle might have cherry picked the orignal article for maximum rage, hell, she might just be making the shit up, like the WV Republicans who are telling the faithful that if Kerry wins Bible's will be banned. As a public service and because she did not link to the original article, I will. Thus ends the tour of wingerville, which always starts out as an enjoyable excercise, but ends up making me feel creepy. Again, Props to W 'O C for wading into the shallow end of the pool, where predjudice prevarication and paranoia run wild like so many toddlers in a candy store.

Friday, September 24

Compassion in Action

A vagrant was left to die by South African Perimedics, who apparently were unaware that they were being videotaped. Unbelievable.
An investigation has been launched after paramedics allegedly left a homeless man in Johannesburg to die because he was dirty.

Images of the man in the gutter and his cursory examination by paramedics were captured on security cameras.

South Africa's Health Minister expressed shock at what she said appeared to be appalling conduct.

"We should ensure that such an incident never happens again in this country," said Manto Tshabalala-Msimang.
They called an ambulance which arrived shortly afterwards, but after conducting a brief investigation the paramedics, wearing surgical gloves, moved the man to a nearby wall and left him there.

They stayed approximately five minutes.

According to the guards, they were told that the paramedics would not let the man into their ambulance because he was "too dirty and stank".

He died a few hours later- from what the authorities say was natural causes.

Maybe the Republicans can find these guys a job.

Police State Campaign Activities

Two teachers were arrested for wearing Kerry Edwards buttons and protesting (and doing this in the same county and daring to breathe the same air as president bubble boy) a presidential visit to Cedar Rapids. Thanks to the General, you can see a video here (provided you use internet explorer, they have a bias, it seems against Mozilla). This is from september 4th, but it was the first time I have seen it, and I have covered any such examples that cross into view.

Barbara Hannon was shocked her two friends Alice McCabe and Kristine Nelson were arrested for standing peacefully near the park. "We were told because we have Kerry Edwards buttons we are not allowed to be anywhere."

McCabe and Nelson were taken into custody and the Democratic Party called the American Civil Liberties Union about the arrests.

Linn County Democratic Party Chair Joel Miller says the party posted bond for the two women. "So much of the area is private property there is no room for protesters to stand. They have to keep moving away from the rally."

Maggie Swanson says she has been to lots of protests and has seen lots of arrests. "People who've never been to one say oh as long as you are standing peacefully they will let you stand as close as you want as long as you are being peaceful, it's just not true."

Police say they told protesters about the strict no loitering rules.

God forbid the president would actually be exposed to anyone who opposes him. He is a brave and resolute Coward. President Coward is a WIMP.

Thursday, September 23

Un address goodies

Here are some selected nuggets of stayinthecoursitude from the presidebts sheechificatin' at the United Nations yesterday. Well approach this from the subliminal message angle, to get at the real meaning behind the words.
[,,,,,rewritten for clarity........]

That dignity is dishonored by oppression The Patriot Act, corruption cough, Halliburton, cough, tyranny, bigotry The Republican party, terrorism Abortion clinic bombers and all violence carpet bombing against the innocent.
We know that dictators George Bush are is quick to choose aggression, while free nations Bushistan strive to resolve differences in peace. Boot out UN weapons inspectors

They I believe that dictators George Bush should control every mind and tongue in the Middle East and beyond were coming for the rest of the world.

They I believe that suicide and torture Abu Ghraib and murder carpet bombing are fully justified to serve any goal
They I declare. And they act on their beliefs Looting the treasury and handouts to Halliburton.

Finding the full promise where all the gold is hidden
of in a representative government takes time, as America
has found in two centuries of debate and struggle. Nor is there only one
form of representative government because democracies, by definition, take on
the unique Gold hiding character of the peoples pidgeons that create them


At a press conference with Allawi, Bush said some, well, whenever he opens his mouth unscripted, words fall out. From Fox via Atrios. There is so much to choose from, that no redundancies will be necessary (well except for this gem*).
If that's what he says -- he was in my office this morning, he didn't say that to me. But if he were to say that, I'd listen to him.
*The first part of the question was how come we haven't found Zarqawi? We're looking for him. He hides. He's got an effective weapon and that is terror.
I said yesterday that our military cannot be defeated by these thugs. But what they do is behead Americans so they can get on the TV screens
See, I think that the Iraq theater is a part of the war on terror.
I have thoughts too jackass, and I don't think that Iraq is a theatre in the war on terror. And in popularity contest, I think what I think will trump what you think, thats just what I think though, you know with the thoughts I've been thinking that is.
And I believe that if we wilt or leave, America's security will be much worse off.
And so that's why I'm consistently telling the Iraqi citizens that we will not be intimidated.

It's hard work in Iraq. Everybody knows that. We see it on our TV.
These are the people who were tortured. This good man was in bed in a London flat and he wakes up with two Saddam henchmen there with axes trying to cut him to pieces with an ax.

First time I've heard about this, If this is the case Saddam had some stupid assed henchmen. I'm thinking shoot first, hack later....WTF.
See 9/11 changed everything. September the 11th meant that we had to deal with a person like Saddam Hussein.
I do know they were emboldened when Spain withdrew from Iraq as a result of attacks on election.
Unbelievable the bullshit that flies out of this asshats mouth. And in a continuing tradition of historical revisionism, not a word spoken about Osama bin Laden.

Europeans do a number on Bush

Got to hand it to the Europeans, they are shall we say a bit more sophisticated, than our lapdog media. Lets take a look at what some of the European Press ha to say about the dimwitted dauphin's resplendent in resolutitude, address to the United Nations. From the NTY.

The Financial Times contended in its lead editorial that the Bush administration "systematically refused to engage with what actually has happened in Iraq" - namely, in the newspaper's view, that American policy "mistakes" had "handed the initiative to jihadi terrorists" who "now have a new base from which to challenge the West and moderate Islam."

Thats Putting it kindly. And rather than rely on the Times, lets go the the source for some eloquent analysis, or as some might say statements of the obvious.

While Mr Bush adopted an emollient tone towards the UN, an institution his administration so evidently mistrusts, the extent of the president's disengagement from the reality of a sinking Iraq is alarming. He exhibited no sense whatsoever of grievous US policy mistakes, of the serial failures of the occupation authorities, or the extent to which the Iraqi misadventure has handed the initiative to jihadi terrorists - who always were the clear and present danger, but now have a new base from which to challenge the west and moderate Islam.

The president chose to bracket Iraq with the only marginally less volatile situation in Afghanistan. Post-conflict state-building there is fragile but Mr Bush can point to elections due to take place next month. He professed to believe these two nations are becoming models for their regions.

But the future of these countries will depend more ultimately on challenging the relentlessly unreal optimism of these assertions than on believing them.

Thats more like it. Now lets go back to the times, and see what others have to say.
The Polish newspaper Nasz Dziennik, however, argued in an editorial that Mr. Bush, having "attacked Iraq in defiance" of those nations that called for United Nations authorization for invasion, Mr. Bush was now trying to convince the international community that it should pay for the "chaos'' caused by "reckless policy."
Chaos would be an appropriate description of the present state of Iraq, and Reckless policy certainly got us their. Lets see what the French have to say.
In Le Figaro, which reflects the thinking of France's conservative establishment, the correspondent Philippe Gélie wrote that Mr. Bush was "impervious to criticism'' in the conduct of American foreign policy, and characterized his speech as that of a "campaigning American president'' who "lectured the rest of the world.''
Come on tell us what you really mean. The germans choose not to mince words.
An editorial in the German daily Tagesspiegel was blunt. Its headline: "U.S., U.N., Iraq: The truth counts for nothing.''
I guess the speech did not go over very well with the Europeans, who might have a little better handle on the realities in Iraq and Afghanistan, and see through the transparency of a campaign speech obviously directed for american consumption. Mr Stay the course did not win any allies yesterday.

Wednesday, September 22

When is he gonna finish allready

Inspiring speecifying courtesy of
Susan at the Suburban Guerrila

The president wants to take away your mortgage deduction

John Edwards, swings the bat in Ohio had some choice words for the Bush economic record, and some insights into future plans. I have written many times about the neo republican agenda to loot the treasury, and create a class of overlord aristocrats. In that vision of the world, unearned income has more value than earned income. It is important for them to aquire enough money so that their worthless offspring will never have to be subject to "work". Thanks to eschatonian JJF for the tip.

Edwards also criticized the President's new tax agenda as corrupting American values.

"It's time to return to the idea that made this country great," said Edwards. "Instead of helping wealthy people protect their wealth, we should reward the work of America's middle class."

The president has spent the past four years working to shift the tax burden onto people who work, while eliminating taxes on unearned income. The Bush administration's new "tax reform" plan, as revealed in a memo released by his former Treasury Secretary, is a reckless continuation of the President's history of serving special interests on the backs of working Americans.

The President's plan will raise taxes on typical families and take away deductions for home mortgages, charity and health care, hurting middle class families even more than before and rewarding special interests.

"The President's new 'tax reform' is the ultimate expression of his values," said Edwards. "We don't know all of the details, but we know that people who inherit hundreds of millions will pay nothing; firemen and waitresses and working people will pay everything. And we know his plan will take away the most important incentive for the single most important form of ownership: it will eliminate entirely the tax deduction for home mortgage interest."

Edwards pledged that he and John Kerry would create an economy that would honor work and responsibility, rather than wealth. The Kerry-Edwards plan rests on the idea that the middle class is the engine that drives the economy. Kerry and Edwards will create real economic growth by strengthening and expanding the middle class.

More of this is sure to follow, and Cheney's sock puppet will be selling his fake ass ranch come november, when it can no longer be mined for phot-ops for the fake cowboy. Soros ought to send the guy some horses, GWB is apparently terrified of them.

Love the movie

Cole does some comparison shopping

Juan Cole asks us to imagine if what was going on in Iraq, was happening in the United states instead. This is just a thought experiment, but it is an interesting one. I caught this over at Steves place
If America were Iraq, What would it be Like?

President Bush said Tuesday that the Iraqis are refuting the pessimists and implied that things are improving in that country.

What would America look like if it were in Iraq's current situation? The population of the US is over 11 times that of Iraq, so a lot of statistics would have to be multiplied by that number.

Thus, violence killed 300 Iraqis last week, the equivalent proportionately of 3,300 Americans. What if 3,300 Americans had died in car bombings, grenade and rocket attacks, machine gun spray, and aerial bombardment in the last week? That is a number greater than the deaths on September 11, and if America were Iraq, it would be an ongoing, weekly or monthly toll.

And what if those deaths occurred all over the country, including in the capital of Washington, DC, but mainly above the Mason Dixon line, in Boston, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City, and San Francisco?

What if the grounds of the White House and the government buildings near the Mall were constantly taking mortar fire? What if almost nobody in the State Department at Foggy Bottom, the White House, or the Pentagon dared venture out of their buildings, and considered it dangerous to go over to Crystal City or Alexandria?

What if all the reporters for all the major television and print media were trapped in five-star hotels in Washington, DC and New York, unable to move more than a few blocks safely, and dependent on stringers to know what was happening in Oklahoma City and St. Louis? What if the only time they ventured into the Midwest was if they could be embedded in Army or National Guard units?

There are estimated to be some 25,000 guerrillas in Iraq engaged in concerted acts of violence. What if there were private armies totalling 275,000 men, armed with machine guns, assault rifles (legal again!), rocket-propelled grenades, and mortar launchers, hiding out in dangerous urban areas of cities all over the country? What if they completely controlled Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Denver and Omaha, such that local police and Federal troops could not go into those cities?

What if, during the past year, the Secretary of State (Aqilah Hashemi), the President (Izzedine Salim), and the Attorney General (Muhammad Baqir al-Hakim) had all been assassinated?

What if all the cities in the US were wracked by a crime wave, with thousands of murders, kidnappings, burglaries, and carjackings in every major city every year?

What if the Air Force routinely (I mean daily or weekly) bombed Billings, Montana, Flint, Michigan, Watts in Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Anacostia in Washington, DC, and other urban areas, attempting to target "safe houses" of "criminal gangs", but inevitably killing a lot of children and little old ladies?

What if, from time to time, the US Army besieged Virginia Beach, killing hundreds of armed members of the Christian Soldiers? What if entire platoons of the Christian Soldiers militia holed up in Arlington National Cemetery, and were bombarded by US Air Force warplanes daily, destroying thousands of graves and even pulverizing the Vietnam Memorial over on the Mall? What if the National Council of Churches had to call for a popular march of thousands of believers to converge on the National Cathedral to stop the US Army from demolishing it to get at a rogue band of the Timothy McVeigh Memorial Brigades?
There is much more, so go read it when you get the chance. The importance of this though experiment is to open your eyes to what is really happening in Iraq, in a way that one can easily understand, even possibley, the dimwitted supporters of the messopotamian catastrophe. This might be something that the whores below could benefit from reading, but I won't hold my breath. Steve adds a couple of observations to the mix.
He left out the obvious: what if US Army weapon depots were open to all takers and everyone had an M-16A3 in the closet, walked around with Berettas and AT4's were free for the taking. And the Parker Center and One Police Plaza were the site of frequent carbombings and police who cooperated with the EU forces were shot on sight and people who worked for them were immediately ratted out to the resistance, who came to visit them at night.
Pretty isn't it, and all of this is being done in our name, in the cause of "libery and freedom". The longer that Bush is allowed to use those words, the more thier value is diminished. Please shut that gaping lie hole of yours OK mr. bush.

Enemies of the State

I often make the claim that the fourth estate is bound and gagged in a basement somewhere. I have also tried to refer to the media as the "whoreth estate", but no one else seems to find this funny. Oh well, maybe next time. Anyway given the respect that the media has for the truth, and in honor of the Baghdad whores, we will create a wall of shame.

I love blogger I really do

They are a generous group, and I like that I can bloviate for free. If I was smart, I would edit my posts in an editor and then paste them into the post making thingy, and then I wouldn't lose posts, but then again I have to remember that I am an idiot.

Thanks for everything blogger,

Hugs and Kisses,


Voter suppression tactics for Bigots, a primer.

For nearly a hundred years the south flaunted the 14th ammendment, requiring the passage of the 24th ammendment abolishing various means southerners had continued to violate the rights of black people to vote including the poll tax. Well the Party of Lincoln Racsists, continue to find creative ways to suppress the vote. After this primer, we'll take a look at a one time bigoted thug who is now the chief justice (Ha fucking Ha) of the supreme court of the USA.

"There are individuals and officials who are actively trying to stop people from voting who they think will vote against their party and that nearly always means stopping black people from voting Democratic," said Mary Frances Berry, head of the U.S. Commission on Human Rights.

Vicky Beasley, a field officer for People for the American Way, listed some of the ways voters have been "discouraged" from voting.

"In elections in Baltimore in 2002 and in Georgia last year, black voters were sent fliers saying anyone who hadn't paid utility bills or had outstanding parking tickets or were behind on their rent would be arrested at polling stations. It happens in every election cycle," she said.

In a mayoral election in Philadelphia last year, people pretending to be plainclothes police officers stood outside some polling stations asking people to identify themselves. There have also been reports of mysterious people videotaping people waiting in line to vote in black neighborhoods.

Minority voters may be deterred from voting simply by election officials demanding to see drivers' licenses before handing them a ballot, according to Spencer Overton, who teaches law at George Washington University. The federal government does not require people to produce a photo identification unless they are first-time voters who registered by mail.

"African Americans are four to five times less likely than whites to have a photo ID," Overton said at a recent briefing on minority disenfranchisement.

Courtenay Strickland of the Americans Civil Liberties Union testified to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights last week that at a primary election in Florida last month, many people were wrongly turned away when they could not produce identification.

People often wonder why blacks vote against the republican party. Its simple really. The Republicans cowtow to racists, many of them are themselves racists.
People of color can smell a bigot a mile away, and we can also cypher the fancy code words you use to pander to the white southern bigot. It is exactly the southern strategy that cost you the black vote, the pandering to "states rights".

Lets take a look at young Billy Rehnquist, who as a young man was involved in voter suppression activies at a polling station in Phoenix in 1962. Ten years later, the notorious bigot Nixon, rewarded the Bills loyalty with a seat in the supreme court.

But underneath that robe hides the same little scamp, Billy Rehnquist, who used to run around the neighborhood terrorizing minority voters forty years ago.

Return with me now to those innocent days of yesteryear.

It is election day in November of 1962. We are in Phoenix, Arizona, where a young former Supreme Court clerk is doing his unlevel best to see that Barry Goldwater is elected president. The young man, William H. Rehnquist, Esq., has been director of “ballot security” operations for the local Republican Party since 1958. On this day he is the sole Republican official at a polling station in south Phoenix, which is overwhelmingly African-American, Hispanic, and Democratic.
Complaints of voter harassment are pouring in from precincts in south Phoenix. Republican challengers are said to be breaking the federal law which makes it a crime to “intimidate, threaten, or coerce . . . for the purpose of interfering with the right to vote.”

“The complaints we received alleged in various forms that the Republican challengers were aggressively challenging many voters without having a basis for that challenge . . .

“Based on my interviews with others, polling officials, and my fellow assistant U.S. attorneys, it was my opinion in 1962 that the challenging effort was designed to reduce the number of black and Hispanic voters by confrontation and intimidation . . .

“When we arrived, the situation was tense. At that precinct I saw William Rehnquist, who was serving as the only Republican challenger (emphasis added). The FBI agent and I both showed our identifications to those concerned, including Mr. Rehnquist . . . The complaints did involve Mr. Rehnquist’s conduct. Our arrival and the showing of our identifications had a quieting effect on the situation and after interviewing several witnesses, we left. Criminal prosecution was declined as a matter of prosecutorial discretion . . .

“I have read the testimony and letter supplied by Justice Designate William Rehnquist to this committee in 1971 . . . He describes his role in the early 1960s as trying to arbitrate disputes at polling places. That is not what Mr. Rehnquist was doing when I saw him on Election Day in 1962.

Oh and there is more, about a little thing called "Operation Eagle Eye". For his loyalty to the republican cause, he was rewarded by that notorious bigot Nixon, with an appointment to the supreme court. As we shall see, this episode turns full circle as another member of the SCOTUS, got her start, with a republican that did not wish to participate in "Operation Eagle Eye" How the worm turns.

Lito Pena is sure of his memory. Thirty-six years ago he, then a Democratic Party poll watcher, got into a shoving match with a Republican who had spent the opening hours of the 1964 election doing his damnedest to keep people from voting in south Phoenix.

"He was holding up minority voters because he knew they were going to vote Democratic," said Pena.

The guy called himself Bill. He knew the law and applied it with the precision of a swordsman. He sat at the table at the Bethune School, a polling place brimming with black citizens, and quizzed voters ad nauseam about where they were from, how long they'd lived there -- every question in the book. A passage of the Constitution was read and people who spoke broken English were ordered to interpret it to prove they had the language skills to vote.

By the time Pena arrived at Bethune, he said, the line to vote was four abreast and a block long. People were giving up and going home.

Pena told the guy to leave. They got into an argument. Shoving followed. Arizona politics can be raw.

Finally, Pena said, the guy raised a fist as if he was fixing to throw a punch.

"I said 'If that's what you want, I'll get someone to take you out of here' "

Others in Phoenix remember Operation Eagle Eye, too.

Charlie Stevens, then the head of the local Young Republicans, said he got a phone call from the same lawyer Pena remembered throwing out of Bethune School. The guy wanted to know why Charlie hadn't joined Operation Eagle Eye.

"I think they called them flying squads," Stevens said. "It was perfectly legal. The law at the time was that you had to be able to read English and interpret what you read."

But he didn't like the idea and he told Bill this.

"My parents were immigrants," Stevens said. They'd settled in Cleveland, Ohio, a pair of Greeks driven out of Turkey who arrived in the United States with broken English and a desire to be American. After their son went to law school and settled in Phoenix, he even Americanized the name. Charlie Tsoukalas became Charlie Stevens.

"I didn't think it was proper to challenge my dad or my mother to interpret the Constitution," Stevens said. "Even people who are born here have trouble interpreting the Constitution. Lawyers have trouble interpreting it."

The guy told Stevens that if he felt that way about it, then he could take a pass.

Operation Eagle Eye had a two-year run. Eventually, Arizona changed the laws that had allowed the kind of challenges that had devolved into bullying.

Pena went on to serve 30 years in the Arizona State Legislature. Stevens became a prosperous and well-regarded lawyer in Phoenix and helped Sandra Day O'Connor get her start in law.

The guy Pena remembers tossing out of Bethune School prospered, too. Bill Rehnquist, now better known as William H. Rehnquist, chief justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, presided yesterday over a case that centers on whether every vote for president was properly recorded in the state of Florida.

Those pesky nigras and wetbacked savages really should not have the right to vote, unless they cast a vote for the loyalty oath party. That we trust this bastard and his cronies to uphold the law of the land, is shamefull at best. But then I have these naive notions of what the constitution stands for and am only an armchair pundit, and not a towering legal mind. It sure is a good thing that the 14th ammendment rights of george bush took precedent over the 14th ammendment rights of pesky negroes in florida - a very good thing - (please don't send me into the corn field)

Why Bill O'lielly needs to be sodomised with a baseball bat the size of his ego.

Yes I am ripping off the Rude Pundit, in fact I am happy to do so. John Stewart made an appearance on the show last night, thanks to eschatonian landlubber for the heads up on the transcript. I guess the gasbag from here on to be known as Baghdad Bill, is concerned that Stewart might have influence with a certain demographic. And when I say "certain demographic" we are talking about undesireables, untermenchen, in other words those that are less than, well, Baghdad Bill, you know, niggers, spicks, irishmen, wetbacks, and slackers. I'll let him tell the story in his own words.

BILL O'REILLY, HOST: Thanks for staying with us. I'm Bill O'Reilly. In the "Personal Story" segment tonight, he is the darling of the television critics, the host of "The Daily Show" on Comedy Central, and now has a book called "America: A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction" -- 'inaction,' one word. Welcome, Jon Stewart, to the no spin zone, everyone.

JON STEWART, "THE DAILY SHOW": How are you, sir?

O'REILLY: OK. You know what's really frightening?


O'REILLY: You know what's really frightening?

STEWART: You've been reading my diary.

O'REILLY: You actually have an influence on this presidential election. That is scary.

And what is really funny is that Jon probably has much more influence than Baghdad "old fluffing the faithful" Bill, and that is what is scaring the egomaniacal one. Let's continue shall we.

STEWART: If that were so, that would be quite frightening.

O'REILLY: But it is. It's true. I mean, you've got stoned slackers watching your dopey show every night, OK, and they can vote.


O'REILLY: You can't stop them.

STEWART: Yeah, I just don't know how motivated they would be, these stoned slackers.

O'REILLY: Yeah, it just depends if they have to go out that day.

STEWART: What am I, a Cheech and Chong movie? Stoned slackers?

O'REILLY: Come on, you do the research, you know the research on your program.

STEWART: No, we don't.

O'REILLY: Eighty-seven percent are intoxicated when they watch it. You didn't see that?

STEWART: No, I didn't realize that.

Wow 8.7 out of 10 Stewart watchers are stoners, I had never really though about it before, but then I usually catch the re-runs the following day. I would not be suprised if a majority of folks watching anything but Lawrence Welk re-runs are probably medicated by something at that hour. But I digress.

O'REILLY: But you do have some influence. Now, how do you see that? You have influence. John Kerry bypassed me and went right over to you. You're only four blocks away. He said, "O'Reilly, I don't think so. Stewart, I'm going to go talk to you."

STEWART: Well, I have to tell you -- and again, I mean no disrespect, but the snack selection backstage, quite frankly...

O'REILLY: Yeah, it's...


STEWART: You know, I don't want to shake Guantanamo Bay, but it's a little sparer back there.

O'REILLY: It's close, it's close. We want people to be hungry when they come out.

STEWART: I think that's wise. We have, what I like to call, snack-size Three Musketeers, some Snickers, some Milky Ways. If I were a presidential candidate and I had to choose, I think a place that had an energy pick-me-up might be the place I would go.

O'REILLY: Do you think that Kerry does himself any good talking to you? Because I think most of your audience is going to vote for him anyway, aren't they?

STEWART: If I thought...

O'REILLY: The stoned slackers.

STEWART: If I thought honestly that their strategy hinged upon his coming and talking to me, I would suggest that they were in some deep trouble. I don't know. I feel like, you know, we don't have an agenda of influence.

If we have influence, it is peripheral. And I don't imagine that people who watch the show are watching it to make up their minds in terms of who they think would best prosecute the war on terror. I think they watch to see who would maybe have the best jokes on the war on terror.

O'REILLY: No, here's what I think. I've been on the show a couple of times. I mean, you obviously make fun of everybody. You know, I'm making fun of your show now. But you get everybody.

STEWART: We are, in fact, crass and immature.

Baghdad Bill, is trying to make some kind of point, something about Kerry trying to gain the stoned slacker vote and who knows what else, maybe a dig at the intelligence of Daily show viewers, and a swipe at the french?

O'REILLY: But even so, younger people tend to be a little bit more, you know...

STEWART: When you say younger, are you talking 9, 10? What are you talking here?

O'REILLY: No, I'm talking 18 to 25, you know. The people who are on your intellectual level.

STEWART: Thank you.

O'REILLY: They seek that.


TEWART: No, I wouldn't have put it that way. I think it would have been, why do you have such je ne sai qua?

O'REILLY: Yeah, some French. We're boycotting France, so I couldn't answer...

STEWART: By the way, I couldn't agree with you more about the French thing. They are such an important country, and I think really deserve a boycott.

O'REILLY: Yeah, they do.

STEWART: Because of the influence they wield in the world.


O'REILLY: Well, you know, I know you don't agree with...

STEWART: They have a variety of cheeses, and...

O'REILLY: I was just going to say, you have to have your brie before you go on.

STEWART: Do you really believe France is, in any way, worthy of a boycott?

O'REILLY: I do. I think France has really hurt the USA, to be...

STEWART: Really?

O'REILLY: Yes, I do.

STEWART: More than like Saudi Arabia? You would advocate a boycott...

O'REILLY: No, I'm not going to say more than Saudi Arabia. But I'm saying we do a lot...

STEWART: So why not boycott them?

O'REILLY: France is supposed to be our friend. Saudi Arabia is...

Read the rest of it. I would love to use it all but fair use, etc. I would have loved to enjoy some of the facial expressions Jon made, but my imagination will have to do for now.

Baghdad Bill

Defender of truth justice and the Armerican Way

To Release or not to release....

Now that two of the three hostages taken last week from their home in Baghdad, have been found without their heads, there is some question whether or not the release is pending for a couple of female scientists, still in captivity. From the BBC. There does seem to be some confusion concerning, the positive identity of the dead hostages.

There are conflicting reports as to whether two female scientists held by the US in Iraq are to be freed.

Militants are threatening to kill a third hostage unless all Iraqi women in US-run prisons are free.

The US dismissed statements from Iraqi officials that one of the scientists, who have been held as members of Saddam Hussein's regime, would soon be freed.

British hostage Kenneth Bigley is believed to be still alive, after two US contractors were beheaded.

The US says it is only holding two women prisoners - Rihab Rashid Taha and Huda

Salih Mahdi Ammash - and that it has no knowledge of any plan to release them.
I am sure that we are only holding 2 female prisiners, well not really, but for the sake of argument, i'll "trust" the authorities. From this article, we find that the women have nicknames, out of a James Bond, or
Austin Powers movie. Allawi steps in to quell any questions concerning the release of these two:

Allawi told The Associated Press that no release of prisoners is imminent, though his government has begun reviewing the status of its detainees, including the two female scientists known as "Dr. Germ" and "Mrs. Anthrax" for their involvement in Saddam Hussein's biological weapons programs.

Sweet, always a good idea to come up with evil names for captive criminals. In fact I'm pretty convinced that Dr Germ and Mrs. Anthrax are responsible for war crimes, with all that germ warfare, and anthrax they threw at us wile we invaded their country.

What? Saddam didn't use any chemical or biological weapons, holy cow, didn't know that. I might be inclined to believe that these scientist, like their counterparts all over the world might have just been working in positions of national security, and in that context might not be guilty of anything, but the names are cute, and I am reminded that we seem to have a Mr or Mrs Anthrax still running loose in this country.

But we must move on because time is running out for the third hostage we care about ('cause he's white and speaks english).

Sep 22, 11:29 AM (ET)

By Luke Baker

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - With time running out to save a British hostage in Iraq, U.S. officials said on Wednesday they were not about to free female Iraqi prisoners as demanded by an al Qaeda ally whose group has already beheaded two Americans.

The Iraqi government said judges had ruled that a weapons scientist -- one of only two women Washington says it holds -- should be given a conditional release, but only in a few days.

It was unclear whether Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's demand for all women to be freed even referred to this pair at all -- both scientists, they worked for Saddam Hussein's secular government.

Not even sure that the terrorists are talking about the scientists. Yeah beginning to be skeptical about that "only two" and there real bad. I have a small problem trusting the administration. Normally trust is earned, In some cases we trust in institutions, you know, like the government, well some folks anyway, but witht the gang that can't shoot straight at the helm, with George Bush playing the Don Knotts role, I have come to generally rely on the opposite of what has been said. It i generally much closer to the truth. Lets see if the administration or any of their spokespersons have anything to add.

The White House offered condolences to the Hensley family Wednesday.

"Their strength during a difficult time is amazing. The terrorists want to shake our will, but they will not," said Scott McClellan, a White House spokesman. "It shows the true barbaric nature of the enemies we face in Iraq, that they would take innocent civilian life. They will be defeated, they will not prevail."

How about that Scotty, condolences and praise of strength, he swerves right into the tired, banal, and long worn out platitudes, ending with the all to familier sign that the cliff is just a few miles away, that we will prevail.

I know that this post has been stuffed with snark like a christmas goose, will be viewed by some of the more sensitive among us as shrill and disrespectful, and by any mentally challenged supporter of this catastrophe in Iraq, or the Administration that sent too few of our brave men and women, into battle with a fubared supply chain, not enough water, body armour, bullets, or even proper housing for gods sake. If the strident tone alarms, you can shove your sensitivities.
Those bastards (I'm looking at you george, dick and the rest of the neocon cabal) did the equivalent of sending in our troops to an occupation gunfight armed with knives.

Tuesday, September 21

From Gods mouth to your Ears

This is a first, but given the state of the "National Media" Ill take what I can get. From the vaunted temple of journalistic integritude, The National Inquirer, come the latest about George and his l'affair du Cocaine, and I haven't even gotten that far in the Kitty Kelly book. So lets have a looksee shall we? In a large point headline that screams "New Proof Bush Snorted Cocaine" we find out about bush and cocaine, suprised? didn't think so.
While President George W. Bush's spokespeople are denying the allegation in Kitty Kelley's new book that Bush used cocaine, an ENQUIRER investigation has tracked down others who are making similar bombshell charges!

One source, author Toby Rogers, said a former member of George Bush Sr.'s staff revealed to him that George W. used cocaine and "has been out of control since college."

The issue that goes on sale Friday explores Kelley's charge that George W. did cocaine at Camp David while his father was President, that First Lady Laura Bush sold marijuana in college ... and much more.

Published on: September 17, 2004

Of course it's a tease, but it is our tease, and something that will keep the heads spinning in Freeplandia. Yeeehaaaaaaw

Transcript from MSGOP interview of Kerry foreign policy adviser Susan Rice.

I won't be doing this any time soon, transciption is hard work. I was compelled after listening to some stupid questions to do this here thing and provide it for the edification of anyone who is interested. I will probably come back in a bit and add some snarky goodness, but for the time being I will take a break, and take a look at the U.N. speech.
MSNBC post UN speach analysis. Bimbette form MsGOP and Susan Rice Kerry foreign policy adviser.
Joined in progress.....
Bimbette:......A conciliatory tone, a thankful tone, for the help in the war on terror, but also affirming the United States commitment to democracy around the world, your reaction?

Susan Rice: Well I think this speech was, unfortunately, quite dissappoiting. There's a pattern here, every year george bush goes to the United Nations and he gives a speech, filled with lofty rhetoric and promises. And those promised are never met by action, let me give you some examples. He finally used the word genocide to describe the situation in Darfur Sudan, but the US action is to do nothing , it is to pass a toothless resolution in the security council, with no sanctions, no deadline, nothing to force action, to halt the genocide. He talks about debt and how important that was, but offered no initiatives for relieving the debt of the worlds poorest countries. He talked about democracy and pledged a democracy fund, but he didnt say how much the US would contribute to that fund. And he didn't tackle the greatest threats to democracy that we are witnessing on the planet, he says nothing when Vladimir Putin rolls back democracy in Russia, he sides with the wrong team uh when democracy is undermined in haiti, his words don't match his actions, unfortunately, and thats a very dangerous thing in a world where we face so many threats.

Bimbette: He has argued and has said forcefully that the united states has been consistant in its policy, that the US wil continue to stay the course, and polls show that thats one of the problems for your candidate, that perceptions are that he has changed his mind not just over the course of years, but over the course of months and weeks, and particular in his stand on what to do about the war in Iraq. What do you say to that?

Susan Rice: I think this a very interesting phenominon, george bush talks about consistancy and staying the course and he is more vacillating in his approach to iraq than anyone could imagine. He's changed the rationale for going to war more times than any of us can count....[Bimbette interupts trying to wedge her rovian talking points but Susan soldiers on-because of the interuption and crosstalk this will be tough, but I want susan to speak her peace]....he says we are going to go into fallujah and kill the folks there and then he doesn't do it. [I am not gonna bother trying to figure out what bimbette was trying to ask, but Susan was able to make her point]

Bimbette: I, I'm sorry but I just want I just want to make the point, the polls don't support what you are saying, the American people in growing numbers, supporting his policies, do you think it is that your candidate is not getting his message out as well as he should?

Susan Rice: No I think the American people are going to be paying close attention to the situation in Iraq, and they are going to see as we proceed through the coming weeks, the unfortunate reality which is, that Iraq is a dangerous mess and getting messier. President Bush is trying to Happy talk his way through the situation, the reality doesn't match his words and when the American people focus on that, and focus on the fact that george bush still at this late date has no plan to bring our troops home in success, has no plan to go after Osama bin Laden, and al Quaida, the primary threat we face, when they recognise that george bush has dangerously diverted us from the real war on terrorism, to put our military and our intelligence and our financial resourses
into Iraq, where there are no weapons of mass destruction, no links to al quaida, and now were in a terrible bog. they will realise that it time for new leadership in this county that GB has taken us in the wrong direction, that its time for a new direction and that John Kerry and John Edwards offer a smart tough approach to win the war on terrorism, succeed in Iraq an make america safer.

Bimbette: Your candidate laid out a four point plan for Iraq yesterday, very ambitious plan, but many analysts are questioning whether or not the proposals are realistic or even all that new. The bush administration has tried some of these approaches before, and was unable to pull them off what makes you think that John Kerry can accomplish these things in the international community?

Susan Rice: Well the main thing that has caracterised g-dubs handling of the post war phase in Iraq is Incompetance. Yes george bush talks about elections he talks about training Iraqi security personel, even today he talked about the need to bring our allies to our side, but he's not doing anything. Let me give you an example; rather than have a line in his speech at the UN about the need for countries to join us, why doesn't he take the time while he's up their with over a hundred world leaders, bring them together in a summit, and use his diplomatic muscle to get them to contribute. Instead of claiming as Don Rumsfeld did that we have 210,000 Iraqis trained when we only have 5000, why dont we give General Petraeus, the general on the ground whose supposed to be leading the training of iraqi's, the personel and the resourses he needs to get the job done.

Bimbette: Well for example the bush administration has tried to organize a UN protection force for the election staff, couldn't find any country that was willing to contribute, even with the support and pleas from UN general secretary Kofi Annan, do you think that the approach of John Ed uh uh of John Kerry, will be any different?

Susan Rice: Yeah I think it is very important to look at what the administration has done with respect to the uN protection force he passed the resolution four months ago, have you seen Sec Powell or george bush pound the sand, go over seas, talk to foreign, leaders and cut deals to get them to put troops on the ground? No, it's a lot of talk and no action. You know the US has troops on the ground, if it were a priority in extremis to protect the UN couldn't our coalition partners do some of that without bringing more forces in? The reality is we are not doing what it takes to accomplish the mission in Iraq. John Kerry knows precisely what we need to be doing today, what he'd be doing if he was sitting in george bush's chair, we are all waiting for george bush to tell us how he's is going to get us to success in Iraq, bring our troops home with honor, with their mission truly accomplished. instead he's playing word games, he's trying to confuse the american people, to divert attention to the very unfortunate and worrisome reality that we are in a messy situation in Iraq due to george bush's wrong choices, and he has no plan whatsoever to get us out and accomplish our mission.

Bimbette: Another doctor Rice, Condeliza Rice, national security advisor, made the point this morning that this new government has only been in place three months, our expectations perhaps, are the expectations of the Kerry campaign too high about where we should be at this point after just three months.

Susan Rice: I dont think so, lets remind us just who is setting these high expectations, it was the Bush administration that said once we transfer sovereignty in June to the Iraqi government we will be on the path to democracy. Do you know the sad reality is, attacks on our forces have increased enormously in the period after the transition to sovereignty, back in march there were 700 attacks on US personel, in Iraq, in the month of August there were 2700 attacks a 400% increase it's getting more and more dangerous, its the Bush administration that's doing the happy talk, John Kerry is out there telling the American people the truth about the hard realities we face in Iraq, and sharing with them a concrete plan to bring success to Iraq, and bring our troops home.

Bimbette: Well the president has two potentially very influential allies on his side and that is the leaders of both Iraq and Afghanistan, let me play you a clip from what prime minister allawi has to say. [proceeds to show wrong clip-part of GB speech at the UN]--Well obviously that was not the sound bite I was looking for, but the president has this visual image, he's going to be meeting with both the leaders of both Iraq and Afghanistan, isn't it a powerful message to send to the world out there and to terrorists to say Saddam Hussein is not in power anymore, take a look, we have a new government in place, we're moving forward?

Susan Rice: We're all very greatful that Saddam Hussein is not in power anymore, but the question is are we safer, is the United States safer? did we make the right choice by diverting our attention and resources from the fight against AQ. AQ recall is the organization of Osama Bin Laden, the leader, who killed 3000 Americans three years ago. Instead we are rebuilding a country, and building a democracy, and nation building in Iraq, which posed no threat to the United States, no immenant threat no Weapons of Mass Destruction, no link to AQ. Was that the right choice? John Kerry believes that that was a dangerously wrong choice, a profound diversion from the central threat we face,the central war we must fight, we are there however and we must do our best to succeed, but george bush has led us in a very dangerous and wrong direction. I think it's wonderfull that he'll have some nice photo ops in the rose garden this week with prime minister Allawi and others, but I hope the american people ask the president in the course of this week, what is he going to do besides take the photographs, what is he going to do to bring concrete sucess to our mission in Iraq, bring our troops home in honor, how are we going to get out of the mess that he has created, and how are we going to fight and win the war on terrorism more effectively? John Kerry and John Edwards have a plan that's smart and tough to win the war on terrorism. They know that AQ and Osama Bin Laden have to be the priority of the United States, and that george bush's choices have led us in a very dangerous and wrong direction.

Bimbette: It is an important debate that will continue throughout this campaign. Susan Rice senior foreign policy advisor to the Kerry campaign, thank you for being with us this morning.

Norquist, what a dull tool is He

Cribbed with full diligence from Eschaton via Kos.
The Greatest Generation is Anti-American

Over at Kos, ManfromMiddletown gives a translation of a recent interview with the always cuddly Grover Norquist in El Mundo, which I've confirmed with another Spanish speaker:

When asked about if he thought Democratic Party was coming to an end Norquist told Pablo Pardo of El Mundo that:

"Yes, because in addition their demographic base is shrinking. Each year, 2 million people who fought in the Second World War and lived through the Great Depression die. This generation has been an exeception in American history, because it has defended anti-American policies. They voted for the creation of the welfare state and obligatory military service. They are the base of the Democratic Party. And they are dying. And, at the same time, all the time more Americans have stocks. That makes them defend the interests of business, because it is their own interest. Because of that, it's impossible to bring to the fore policies of social hate, of class warfare."
This From the we dont need government guy. To a couple of respondant at the Eschaton.

My Dad died this January. A good union man for 45 years (sheet metal worker and later operating engineer), he enlisted in the Navy in September of 1941 and was in Pearl Harbor and all but one of the major battles in the Pacific.

Every year at Thanksgiving -- no matter the venue -- when we would go around the table to say what we were thankful for, my dad would always stand up, raise his glass and give his traditional toast "I'm thankful I never voted Republican!"

Well, he's dead and won't be voting, but he left three sons who married and had 7 kids and wives (two who came from "R" backgrounds). Of those 13, 9 are of voting age (2 for the first time) and ALL ARE VOTING AND ALL ARE VOTING ONLY FOR DEMOCRATS.

Once again, these arrogant, over reaching Republican bastards ignore the inconvenient truths. By the way, I kept my Dad's back seat crow bar and Grover's ass is a perfect place to park it.
Egg | Email | Homepage | 09.20.04 - 11:13 pm | #

Right on, Egg. And a toast to your Dad. A toast also to my Democrat voting Dad who died of a massive heart attack the first day Junior's ill-conceived invasion of Iraq.

I just have to say, on re-reading this Norquist quote, (a that it has got to be the most jaw dropping, forehead slapping, spine tingling, sphincter clenching piece of depraved detritus I've ever seen here (and I've seen quite a few doozies).

How is it possible that a goniff like this could ever be taken seriously enough to be trusted with taking out the garbage, much less being a major GOP influence?!?

This is an insult that cannot be allowed to stand.
noodge | Email | Homepage | 09.20.04 - 11:40 pm | #

Monday, September 20

Microwave guns, charming.

The army is set to start testing microwave weapons early next year in Iraq. These painfull but apparently harmless weapons are to be used for crowd control. That's like the best news I have heard. I wonder if it can shoot through walls. The army claims the weapons cause pain and people get out of the way, but as with all new toys how long will it be before some ingenious sadist experiments with people who can't get out of the way? My bet? Two weeks, max. A tip of the Hat to my buddy Rorschach at No Capital (because the Invisible Hand is giving you the finger).

Microwave weapons that cause pain without lasting injury are to be issued to American troops in Iraq for the first time as concern mounts over the growing number of civilians killed in fighting.

The non-lethal weapons, which use high-powered electromagnetic beams, will be fitted to vehicles already in Iraq, which will allow the system to be introduced as early as next year.

Using technology similar to that found in a conventional microwave oven, the beam rapidly heats water molecules in the skin to cause intolerable pain and a burning sensation. The invisible beam penetrates the skin to a depth of less than a millimetre. As soon as the target moves out of the beam's path, the pain disappears.

Because there are no after-effects, the United States Department of Defence believes that the weapons will be particularly useful in urban conflict. The beam could be used to scatter large crowds in which insurgents operate at close quarters to both troops and civilians.

"The skin gets extremely hot, and people can't stand the pain, so they have to move - and move in the way we want them to," said Col Wade Hall of the Office of Force Transformation, a body formed in November 2001 to promote rapid improvement across all of the American armed services.
I wonder what other sinister beam weapons are presently being developed. It also occurs to me that now that they have cracked the human genome, what genetic weapons are being developed. Let's just be happy that we have a nice sandbox of subhumans to test this stuff on. Let us also hope that the Non Gay Zombie forces will be ready soon.

Corn has the proper analogy.

I was gonna start this post of with "I continue to be astonished", but realized that that was inaccurate. Given that the mainstream media is a bought and paid subsidiary of the Bush re-election campaign (and once you embrace this fact things quickly become clear), it comes as no suprise that the media continues to suggest that Kerry needs to describe a detailed plan regarding our adventure in the Iraqi tar pit. That Kerry has an outline of a plan, does not satisfy them. The fact remains that we have no idea what shape Iraq will be in at the end of January 2005. In the mean time Bush is allowed to continue pretending that things in Iraq are just peachy, and all we have to do is stay the course.

Now someone with curiosity who had been paying moderately close attention would wonder what course he was talking about. Would it be sending the Marines into Fallujah, and when losses started to mount pull them out? Would it include asking for funds, then threatening to veto a bill that has provisions for the payment of those funds (the 87 million Kerry voted for). Or to ram a bill through with no provisions to pay for it (the one he voted against) and then fail to nearly a year later actually use any of the funding available (of 18 bill earmarked for reconstruction, only 1 bill has been spent)? Or is it to clear out of areas, letting the insurgency regroup, with the goal of limiting casualties, or is it order troops into the holiest Shia town in the world to desecrate a mosoleum? Georgie boy seems to be all over the chart of resolve. But the bottom line is the man broke it and must be held to account.

Some of us have been trying to come up with workable soundbites in hopes that the media might like what they hear and possibly begin to do their jobs. I am not gonna hold my breath, but the following from David Corn is a nice start, as far as recent questions concerning "what would Kerry do"

The Bush campaign has succeeded in convincing the mainstream media that the key question is, what is Kerry's plan for Iraq? Not, say, what is Bush's plan for Iraq? If Kerry is so fortunate to win on November 2, he won't take office until January 20, and the situation in Iraq could be dramatically different. Any specific plan he tossed out now could be--and probably would be--totally irrelevant at that point. Yet Republicans and echo-chamber reporters keep asking Kerry to state precisely how he would undo Bush's mess.

"I have two young daughters at home," I said to this Kerry aide. "If one takes a glass jar and throws it on the ground of their bedroom and smashes it into thousands of pieces, I don't point my finger at the other one and say, 'Okay, what's your plan for cleaning this up.'"

Concise, to the point and easy to understand. In fact you might think that something this obvious would shame some of the Presstitutes, into pushing Bush a bit harder on what his plans are. Since they won't, I will.

If he is re-elected, Fallujah will be carpetbombed. It is the only way to deal with a city of half a million. He is already operating a not so secret back door draft, and just after Christmas will reveal that the situation in Iraq, and exciting new fronts in the War on Terrah, require the reinstatement of the draft. Social Security will be looted to pay for these adventures, and the race to Rapture will have truly been joined. Thats right, the Rapture. Bush is certain that we are watching the end times in progress and that he has been anointed by god to see it to fruition.

If re-elected the life expectancy of the Dome of the Rock will be short. The Temple of Abraham must be reconstructed for Jesus to return. The funny thing is that historically end-time movements pop up at least every generation, and until now they have fortunately been marginalized. But now these Bible thumpers hold great currency with the leader of the free world, and never before have we had the means to truly "scream Havok and let loose the dogs of war.
Disregard at your peril and to make you feel better, understand that I am just an armchair pundit.

When Ends justify the means, Torture that is.

A year ago, after the deaths of the sons of saddam failed to have the desired impact on the growing insurgency, Iraq was beginning to become a political liability for the President. There is little question at this time that the white house was applying a large amount of pressure on the DOD to gather intelligence to quell the insurgency, the occupation was taking a turn for the worse. We started the practice of busting down doors in the middle of the night and taking males of age (14-60) for questioning. On the occasions that we were looking for someone specific and they were not at home, family members would be swept up in the hopes that the suspects would turn themselves in. I remember reading a story about a neighbor who left his house to see what was going on next door, and discovered that we were looking for his neighbor who was not home at the time, so they picked the neighbor up instead.

I am sure that alot of the information regarding the location of the insugents was provided by informants. I would like to think that some of these folks provided reliable information, but would not be suprised if some of these informants were taking advantage of the system to settle old scores. Needless to say, lots of innocent people were rounded up and interrogated, and in many cases subject to torture. The following tale from the Guardian paints a terrifying picture of the situation on the ground.
Monday September 20, 2004
The Guardian

It began with a phone call. In November last year 39-year-old Huda Alazawi, a wealthy Baghdad businesswoman, received a demand from an Iraqi informant. He was working for the Americans in Adhamiya, a Sunni district of Baghdad well known for its hostility towards the US occupation. His demand was simple: Madame Huda, as her friends and family know her, had to give him $10,000. If she failed to pay up, he would write a report claiming that she and her family were working for the Iraqi resistance. He would pass it to the US military and they would arrest her.

"It was clearly blackmail," Alazawi says, speaking in the Baghdad office of her trading company. "We knew that if we gave in, there would be other demands." The informant was as good as his word. In November 2003, he wrote a report that prompted US soldiers to interrogate Alazawi's brother, Ali, and her older sister, Nahla, now 45. Wearing a balaclava, he also led several raids with US soldiers on the families' antique-filled Baghdad properties.

On December 23, the Americans arrested another of Alazawi's brothers, Ayad, 44. It was at this point that she decided to confront the Americans directly. She marched into the US base in Adhamiya, one of Saddam Hussein's former palaces. "A US captain told me to come back with my two other brothers. He said we could talk after that." On Christmas Eve she returned with her brothers, Ali and Mu'taz. "I waited for four hours. An American captain finally interrogated me. After 10 minutes he announced that I was under arrest." Like thousands of other Iraqis detained by the Americans since last year's invasion, Alazawi was about to experience the reality of the Bush administration's "war on terror".
I read too many accounts similar to this one to believe that this was an isolated case. And once caught up in the web of presumed guilt, the nightmare begins. Think for a moment, put yourself into the shoes of an innocent person facing interrogation. The interrogator is convinced that you know something, and you are unable to convince him otherwise. The stakes are raised as you are unable to provide the necessary information. Stress positions, and other "torture lite&trade" are used in an attempt to break you, when that doesn't work, and it won't, because you don't know anything, more disturbing means are used to convince you to come clean. Sexual humiliation, flashlight sodomy, dogs, I am sure that you have seen the pictures.
"They handcuffed me and blindfolded me and put a piece of white cloth over my eyes. They bundled me into a Humvee and took me to a place inside the palace. I was dumped in a room with a single wooden chair. It was extremely cold. After five hours they brought my sister in. I couldn't see anything but I could recognise her from her crying."

Alazawi says that US guards left her sitting on the chair overnight, and that the next day they took her to a room known by detainees as "the torturing place". "The US officer told us: 'If you don't confess we will torture you. So you have to confess.' My hands were handcuffed. They took off my boots and stood me in the mud with my face against the wall. I could hear women and men shouting and weeping. I recognised one of the cries as my brother Mu'taz. I wanted to see what was going on so I tried to move the cloth from my eyes. When I did, I fainted."

Like most Iraqi women, Alazawi is reluctant to talk about what she saw but says that her brother Mu'taz was brutally sexually assaulted. Then it was her turn to be interrogated. "The informant and an American officer were both in the room. The informant started talking. He said, 'You are the lady who funds your brothers to attack the Americans.' I speak some English so I replied: 'He is a liar.' The American officer then hit me on both cheeks. I fell to the ground.
Imagine if that was your brother, sister, mother, or son. The great thing about the use sexual humiliation (for the torturers that is) is that the people subjected to it are so ashamed that they are likely to keep quiet about their experience.
Alazawi says that American guards then made her stand with her face against the wall for 12 hours, from noon until midnight. Afterwards they returned her to her cell. "The cell had no ceiling. It was raining. At midnight they threw something at my sister's feet. It was my brother Ayad. He was bleeding from his legs, knees and forehead. I told my sister: 'Find out if he's still breathing.' She said: 'No. Nothing.' I started crying. The next day they took away his body."

The US military later issued a death certificate, seen by the Guardian, citing the cause of death as "cardiac arrest of unknown etiology". The American doctor who signed the certificate did not print his name, and his signature is illegible. The body was returned to the family four months later, on April 3, after the Abu Ghraib torture scandal broke. The family took photographs of the body, also seen by the Guardian, which revealed extensive bruising to the chest and arms, and a severe head wound above the left eye.

After Ayad's body had been taken away, Alazawi says that she and 18 other Iraqi detainees were put in a minibus inside the military compound. "The Americans told us: 'Nobody is going to sleep tonight.' They played scary music continuously with loud voices. As soon as someone fell asleep they started beating on the door. It was Christmas. They kept us there for three days. Many of the US soldiers were drunk."
Again I ask you to to think about this happening to your own mother and brother.
Alazawi is reticent about the question of sexual abuse of Iraqi women but says that neither she nor any of the other women in Abu Ghraib at the time were sexually assaulted by US guards. In his subsequent report into the scandal, however, Major General Antonio Taquba found that at least one US military policemen had raped a female inmate inside Abu Ghraib; a letter smuggled out of the prison by a woman known only as "Noor", containing allegations of rape, was found to be entirely accurate. Other witnesses interviewed by the Guardian have said that US guards "repeatedly" raped a 14-year-old Iraqi girl who was held in the block last year. They also said that guards made several of the women inmates parade naked in front of male prisoners.
All the other women detainees, meanwhile, have refused to talk about their ordeal; she is the first to give testimony. As Iraq lurches from disaster to disaster, from kidnapping to suicide bombing, from insurgency towards civil war, from death to death, what does she think of the Americans now? "I hate them," she says.
It can be argued and it has, that this was the tipping point. when we started abusing and torturing innocent Iraqi civilians, we showed our true face to the Iraqi's. This is when we lost the war. It is becoming increasingly obvious to anyone with a brain that the situation in Iraq is getting worse, regardless of the protestations to the contrary made by the President and his handpicked thug Allawi. I am left to wonder who would Jesus torture?

Sunday, September 19

A tree grows in Iraq

Apparently there is evil in Quagmiristan™, and Allawi and Blair claim they are all over that evil like a cheap suit, a very cheap suit.
Iraq has become the "crucible of global terrorism", but insurgents will be defeated, Tony Blair has pledged.

Speaking after talks at Downing Street with Iraq's interim prime minister, he vowed to see the "struggle" through and deliver a "huge defeat" for terrorists.

Iyad Allawi called on the UN to provide whatever help was needed to make next January's planned elections a success.

He said he was adamant democracy would prevail against the "forces of evil" operating in his country.

"We definitely are going to stick to the timetable of elections in January next year," he told reporters on Sunday.

"We are succeeding in Iraq. We are succeeding against the forces of evil."

In this new world, evil, lured by singing siren's, is currently stuck in Tarpit Iraq™, and words are stronger than action. It is reassuring that two of the linchpins in the war against the boogymen of State sponsorship of assymetric terrorism, are strident in their declaration of an exorcism of this beast. One day soon, I will be able to go to bed without first checking to see if Osama is hiding under it.
"Whatever the disagreements about the first conflict in Iraq to remove Saddam, in this conflict now taking place in Iraq, this is the crucible in which the future of this global terrorism will be determined.

"And either it will succeed and this terrorism will grow, or we will succeed, the Iraqi people will succeed, and this global terrorism will be delivered a huge defeat."

You can take this to the bank people. I just want you to know that a little bird told me that we are going to accomplish this task with the aid of a secret zombie army being assembled in Siberia.

Out of bumblefucks mouth

Uh oh, hide the children, Dubya is making promises and prediculatin'.
President Bush has warned that Iraq and Afghanistan could get more violent as elections in both countries approach.

But he vowed to stand by the two countries and also to "accelerate the march of freedom in our world".

His comments, in his weekly radio address, came after a surge of attacks in Iraq raised doubts over whether its elections in January could go ahead.

When the man starts talking about freedom, I get nervous. I have this sinking feeling that he operates with a dictionary unavailable to mortals, where the words all have different definitions.
Freedom might be described as "the ability to act with impunity in any fashion one pleases" It might be used in a sentence as follows: He exercised his freedom to liberate the cash from my wallet.

An unexpected gift - The Family

Warning, extended self indulgent, rambling below.

I was lounging around yesterday in the early evening watching a History Channel show called ToolBox. It's a show that does a passable job discussing tools and their history. Frequent visiters to this place (hey Pat, Margit, my friends in Houston, and Plano) may have read a thing or two about my interest in the repair, modification, and hacking departments. I was a bicycle mechanic for many years and like to remind people that the Wright Brothers bicycle mechanics as well. Anyway I am a guy who likes tools, and I have a boatload myself. A special place in my heart is devoted to hand woodworking tools, particularly planes. So a considerable portion of the show I was watching was about planes, including a visit to the Lie Neilson factory in Maine, where they construct the Cadillac of Planes.

These are just some fantastic tools, made with the best materials, and constructed to the highest standards. Quite frankly tools I have now business owning, because I am basically a hack when it comes to wood working or specifically cabinet making. A wood lathe is a different story though and I have managed to make some very cool things, including a walnut softball bat that
passed muster and was used in a softball game for a couple of at bats (damn thing was too heavy).
When it broke, it went back into the lathe and became a fine mallet, a small cup with a silver inlayed first initial for my Lady's birthday, and many other experiments in form.
The last part of the show paid a visit to a violin maker, who showed off s variety of planes that he made, and uses in his craft.

One of these years, I will combine my love of tools and love of making things, and construct a small foundry, and forge, and get busy casting things, and forging things.
If you are interested in forge work and tool making, the Complete modern Blacksmith, by Alexander Weygers is a must read book. Cleary written with excellent illustrations, that take the mystery out of this age old art. The above link to casting takes you to a series of books describing, how to construct a machine shop from scratch. A fantastic source of books like the above is Lindsay's Technical Books. You want to make a machine shop, melt iron, cast things, make radios..........the list goes on, you should take a look. the variety is astounding.

Now I have a confession to make. I watched a lot of Gilligan's Island as a kid. I have to admit a certain fascination with the professor, and all manner of contraptions he built to make life easier. It occured to me that I might be one day stranded on an island, or survive the downfall of civilization, and that it would be helpfull to aquire a broad base of skills. One of the themes of Farenheit 451, is the preservation of the culture of literature. These themes merged, and as I have never been smitten with a particular field of study, I endevoured to become a generalist with the intent of becoming an indispensible member of a post apocalyptic society on the one hand, and on the other, figure out a way to fix the world (yeah I know, I am probably more likely to put a rock into orbit with a slingshot, but a guy's gotta dream).

Anyway back to the original point, so I'm lounging, and watching the tool show and the Lady of the house comes back and says she has a suprise for me and hands me a copy of "The Family". I had been resigned to wait for our friend, who just got a copy of the book, to finish his, But now I dont have to. I have made it throught the first sixty pages and while I have'nt come across any "bombshells", the background on dubya's forebears, makes understanding Dubya a bit easier, and we haven't even met Barbara Pierce. For me the biggest mind blower thus far, is the discovery that Dubya's great great Grandfather, was born in my hometown of Bloomington Indiana. I started trying to remember some of the Walker's that I went to school with, and of course wondered, if they were distant relatives. When my friend who has a copy of the book came over last night, he was shocked and amazed at this piece of news. His family has resided in the area for a long time, and there are Walker's in his clan. He was upset by the possibility that he might be a distant relative of G-Dub. In homage to the penniless son of a failed farmer, who rose to become a millionaire, whose grand daughter became the mother of one president and the grandmother of another, well take a look at something he published in 1914.
I am in favor of segregating the Negroes in all communities. I consider them more of a menace that the social evil [prostitution], and all other evils combined. I am completely in favor of the unwrittenlaw-lynching for assaults on women, no matter whether the criminal be black or white.

I would compel all men and women to submit to a strict physical examination by a first-class physician before permitting them to marry. For humanity's sake, I am in favor of putting to death all children who come into the world hopeless invalids or badly deformed.

At least he pays lip service to fairness insofar and whites should be lynched as well. I am sure that he was speaking of poor white people, and not members of his class.