Thursday, June 29, 2006

Who Are These Guys?

Did someone sneak in and replace the Supremes with actual sentient beings? The Hamdan ruling is startling in it's rectitude and sweeping rejection of everything BushCo has been doing and the legal underpinings thereof.

SCOTUSblog has great coverage (here and here) and notes that POTUS etal could be guilty of warcrimes. Very tasty.

WaPo coverage here.

SWIFT-ly FLOW THE LIES.....

There's been a lot of coverage of the fact that most of what the NYT, LATimes, and WSJ 'revealed' in their coverage of the SWIFT operation to track terrorist money transfers has been previously touted in speeches by Shrub et alia. Dan Froomkin, in WaPo, (more here) has a good overview/commentary. Also, at no additional charge, is some thinking on Shrub's signing statement idiocy.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Insert Your Own Punchline

From CBS Palm Beach: Rush busted at Palm Beach with prescription drugs not his own :)

(CBS4 News) WEST PALM BEACH Conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh was detained at Palm Beach International Airport for the possible possession of illegal prescription drugs Monday evening.

Limbaugh was returning on a flight from the Dominican Republic when customs officials found a Viagra prescription that did not bear his name. Instead, the bottle of pills had the names of two doctors on it according to the Palm Beach Sheriff�s Office.

...

Limbaugh was detained for about three hours and was let go after cooperating with officials. He could be facing a second-degree misdemeanor violation if the State Attorney�s office presses charges.

Limbaugh entered a plea deal back in April in a previous case where his charge of fraud to conceal information to obtain prescriptions was dropped under the condition he continue undergoing treatment for addiction.

...

Limbaugh's attorney, Roy Black, issued the following statement:

"While going through routine Customs inspection of luggage at Palm Beach International Airport upon his return from an international trip, Rush Limbaugh was detained by customs agents after they noticed a non-narcotic prescription drug, which had been prescribed by Mr. Limbaugh's treating physician but labeled as being issued to the physician rather than Mr. Limbaugh. After a brief interview, Mr. Limbaugh was permitted to continue on his journey."

Friday, June 23, 2006

Now I Understand....

Okay, I know, given the realities of geopolitics and insurgencies and invading forces in undeveloped countries, that we can't really 'win' in Iraq. But after the news today, I finally understand how people might have thought we could win. Saddam is just nuts.

As everyone probably heard, this morning, AFTER breakfast, Saddam announced he was going on a hunger strike since his lawyer had been killed in an ambush by ummmm.... someone (third lawyer, so far.) Anyway, tonight (Baghdad time), he announces he's made his point and the hunger strike is over.

If Gandhi and Bobby Sands had had that type of sheer determination, Britain's empire would have crumbled long ago!

Now I Understand....

Okay, I know, given the realities of geopolitics and insurgencies and invading forces in undeveloped countries, that we can't really 'win' in Iraq. But after the news today, I finally understand how people might have thought we could win. Saddam is just nuts.

As everyone probably heard, this morning, AFTER breakfast, Saddam announced he was going on a hunger strike since his lawyer had been killed in an ambush by ummmm.... someone (third lawyer, so far.) Anyway, tonight (Baghdad time), he announces he's made his point and the hunger strike is over.

If Gandhi and Bobby Sands had had that type of sheer determination, Britain's empire would have crumbled long ago!

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Pentagon Shoots Down Santorum

Gee. What a shock! Apparently, despite Lil Ricky's lies... er claims yesterday, there haven't been any WMD found in Iraq. And, didn't he violate the law by showing around that supposedly classified document on Fox? Just curious?

Net Neutrality Revisited

I dont like, he says again, to post entire blog entries from elsewhere, but this (from dKos) is important!

Net Neutrality Action

Thu Jun 22, 2006 at 09:59:02 AM PDT

The Senate Commerce Committee is starting mark-up on the telecommunications bill today. On the table is a so-called "compromise" on net neutrality by Ted Stevens:

Sen. Ted. Stevens, R-AK, who authored the Senate telecom overhaul, recently amended his own bill to establish a way for consumers to complain about alleged violations of net neutrality. But Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-HI, the committee's ranking democrat said those changes "utterly fail to protect consumers and preserve an open Internet."

Word is that we are as close as one vote away from killing this amendment in committee. The committee vote is likely to be on Tuesday, giving us five days to convince our Senators to vote against the Stevens proposal, and support the Snowe/Dorgan bill (S. 2917) without amendment.

Calls coming from the home state carry more weight than others, but don't let that stop you from being heard. Here's the list of Senators on the Committee that are our focus as being persuadable on this. (You can also call toll free at 1-888-355-3588 to the Capitol switchboard, and they will transfer you to any Senate or House office.)


John McCain (AZ): (202) 224-2235; Fax: (202) 228-2862

Trent Lott (MS): (202) 224-6253; Fax: (202) 224-2262

Kay Bailey Hutchison (TX): 202-224-5922; 202-224-0776 (FAX)

Olympia J. Snowe (ME): (202) 224-5344; FAX (202) 224-1946

Gordon H. Smith (OR): 202.224.3753; Fax: 202.228.3997

George Allen (VA): (202) 224-4024; Fax: (202) 224-5432

Bill Nelson (FL): 202-224-5274; Fax: 202-228-2183

Maria Cantwell (WA): 202-224-3441; 202-228-0514 - FAX

Frank R. Lautenberg (NJ): (202) 224-3224; Fax: (202) 228-4054

E. Benjamin Nelson (NE): Tel: (202) 224-6551; Fax: (202) 228-0012

Mark Pryor (AR): (202) 224-2353; Fax: (202) 228-0908

Here is a list of the full committee membership, phone and fax numbers (thanks, FDL!). While the list above are the people supposedly on the bubble for us, it can't hurt for the entire committee to hear from us.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Hagel Barks at Repugs

WOW!!!

Congress fails in its duty when we do not probe, when we fail, we do not ask tough questions, and we fail when we do not debate the gate issues of our day. There is no issue more important than war. The war in Iraq is the defining issue on which this Congress and the administration will be judged. The American people want to see serious debate about serious issues from serious leaders. They deserve more than a political debate. This debate should transcend cynical attempts to turn public frustration with the war in Iraq into an electoral advantage. It should be taken more seriously than to simply retreat into focus-group tested buzz words and phrases like “cut and run,” catchy political slogans that debase the seriousness of war. War’s not a partisan issue, Mr. President. It should not be held hostage to political agendas. War should not be drug down into the political muck. America deserves better. Our men and women fighting and dying deserve better.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Arianna on Tony Snow

From Huff Po:
I've known Tony Snow for a long time -- and there's no question that he's a very bright and articulate guy.


But he's showing himself to be an honors graduate of the Shit Happens School of Politics. The new poster child for the Bush administration's brand of Callous Conservatism.

It's worth noting that Snow is arriving on the scene just as Michael Gerson, the conscience of the administration and the intellectual architect of the Bush White House's never-made-it-off-the-drawing-board compassionate conservatism, is heading out the door.


According to Josh Bolten, Gerson "reflected the president's heart." So if Karl Rove is Bush's Brain, and Gerson reflected his heart... what part of the president does Snow embody?

So far, I'd say it's located below the waist and to the rear.

From Americablog

AJ needs to open up and say what he feels:

This is the really infuriating part. This administration has systematically misprioritized the war against terrorists, starting when they shifted focus from al Qa'ida in Afghanistan to pursue a miserable strategy in Iraq and continuing through foolish North Korea policy, irrational Iran policy, stunted intelligence reform, resistance to establishing a Department of Homeland Security, and an unprecedented alienation of foreign allies (and potential allies). The administration has taken its eye off the ball, and we're less safe because of it. Normally you keep your eye on the ball so you can smack it, but as Jean Schmidt memorably revealed, "We have to keep our eye on the ball or the ball will come back to harm us." Actually, in this case, she may be right.

Another One Bites the Dust

Safavian guilty on four of five charges!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Your Tax Dollars At Work?

Feel safe with the gigabucks being spent on Homeland Security (the department.... not to be confused with homeland security, the condition?) This will make you feel SOOOOOO much better.

Terrorist in a Bootleg T-Shirt

Durst Alert

Will Durst, one of my favorite comedians, has a new column up. It's one of the those good new/bad news lists, and some of it is funny as hell.

The good news is failure is not an option.

The bad news is it's a factory installed standard feature.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Zarqawi Docs

My gut reaction when the Zarqawi docs were made public was 'BOGUS!'

Apparently, I am not alone.

...well, how can I put this?

Let's just say that were I a strategist for a military which had just killed an insurgency leader such as Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, and seized a bunch of documents full of actionable intelligence, I might not choose to, you know, release them to the media. On the other hand, had I just killed an insurgency leader such as Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and I wanted to follow up on that operational success by sowing confusion and disarray among his followers (and maybe even scoring some points with the domestic public opinion which my Secretary of Defense has identified as a principle theater of conflict), I might very well release a bunch of "documents" showing that the recently deceased was highly pessimistic about his prospects and that his movement was on the run. (I might also announce that said movement had just declared some random character as its new leader, just to sow more confusion.)

Very Clever

Another one where I'm posting an entire blog entry. A brilliant play on Niemoller's poem, with links and examples.....

Bill of No More Rights

Thu Jun 15, 2006 at 12:24:09 PM PDT

They came for the tenth amendment in the name of expansive federal powers. I didn't speak up because I am not a terrorist. Also, I don't grow wheat. Or weed.

They came for the ninth amendment in the name of expansive federal and state powers of law enforcement. I didn't speak up because I am not a criminal.

They came for the eighth amendment in the name of extracting information from terrorists by any means necessary. I didn't speak up because I am not a terrorist.

They came for the seventh amendment in the name of binding arbitration. I didn't speak up because I don't sue people.

They came for the sixth amendment in the name of protecting us from terrorists. I didn't speak up because I am not a terrorist.

They came for the fifth amendment in the name of protecting us from criminals and terrorists. I didn't speak up because I am neither a criminal not a terrorist.

They came for the fourth amendment in the name of catching criminals and terrorists. I didn't speak up because I am neither a criminal nor a terrorist.

They came for the third amendment in the name of preserving order. I didn't speak up because I am not a criminal.

They came for the second amendment in the name of stopping gang violence in the streets. I didn't speak up because I don't own a machine gun.

They came for the first amendment in the name of supporting national unity and protecting national secrets. I didn't speak up because I no longer may.

Ten Years and 2500 Dead Too Late

After showing up and peeing all over the planet for the last 10 years, inspiring W to depths of mediocrity, and shoving us face first into the war in Iraq, the Project for the New American Century is shutting it's doors, according to WaPo. Allow us to slam the doors on your heads first, guys! Please?!?!?!

The doors may be closing shortly on the nine-year-old Project for a New American Century, the neoconservative think tank headed by William Kristol , former chief of staff to Vice President Dan Quayle and now editor of the Weekly Standard, which is must reading for neocon cogitators and agitators.

The PNAC was short on staff -- having perhaps a half-dozen employees -- but very long on heavy hitters.

...

The goal was to continue the Reaganite, muscular approach to projecting American power and "moral clarity" in a post-Cold War world, the group's manifesto said. The targets were liberal drift and conservative isolationism.

PNAC and its supporters dominated the Bush administration's foreign policy apparatus and championed a policy to get rid of Saddam Hussein long before Sept. 11, 2001.

In its famous 1998 letter to President Bill Clinton , PNAC said "removing Saddam Hussein and his regime . . . now needs to become the aim of American foreign policy."

...

Despite the happy chatter before the Iraq invasion about cheering crowds and bouquets and cakewalks and how the war was going to pay for itself, the signatories wrote that "we are fully aware of the dangers of implementing this policy."

There had been debate about PNAC's future, but the feeling, a source said, was of "goal accomplished" and it looks to be heading toward closing.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

OHMIGOD!!!

I dont know if this is true, but I cant see Markos making it up!

Bush opens mouth, inserts foot

Wed Jun 14, 2006 at 10:24:13 AM PDT

Today, at a presser, this exchange happened with Peter Wallsten of the Los Angeles Times:

Bush: You gonna ask your question with shades on?

Wallsten: Yes...

Bush: But there's no sun out here.

Wallsten: It depends on your perspective.

Bush: Touché.

Wallsten is blind.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Zarqawi Dead?

I havent found confirmation yet on the net, but ABC News is announcing (pretty emphatically... they interrupted NIGHTLINE) that the US has killed Zarqawi in a raid in Baghdad. Maybe there CAN be good news out of Iraq after all!

Monday, June 05, 2006

Republican Revelations

No, not a reference to tomorrow (6/6/06).....

The Dallas Morning News has an article covering the opening of the Texas Repug Convention this weekend. It was a hoot. These guys are whackjobs that make the regular Repug nutjobs look palatable.

Steve Benen, subbing for Kevin at WashingtonMonthly.com offers the best analysis:

BY ALL MEANS, MESS WITH TEXAS....It's going back a few years, but in 2000, the reality-based community got a good look at what grassroots conservative activists wanted in the way of government action when the Texas Republican Party published a party platform. Among other things, it called for a return to the gold standard; the abolishment of the Federal Reserve, Social Security, the minimum wage, and the federal income tax; a wholesale rejection of the separation of church and state, an enthusiastic embrace for creationism in science classes, and the criminalization of all abortions and gay sex.

That was then. How's the Texas GOP holding up now? As wacky as ever.

Lt. Col. Brian Birdwell offered a greeting to delegates to the Republican convention. "It's great to be back in the holy land," the Fort Worth native said to the cheers of the party faithful. For the 4,500 delegates at last week's biennial gathering, it was both an expression of conservative philosophy and religious faith, a melding of church and state.

At Saturday morning's prayer meeting, party leader Tina Benkiser assured them that God was watching over the two-day confab.

"He is the chairman of this party," she said against a backdrop of flags and a GOP seal with its red, white and blue logo.

It kind of gives "holier than thou" a whole new meaning, doesn't it?

The activists also adopted a revised party platform that declares, among other things, that "America is a Christian nation"; the official language is "American English"; the Bush should "build a physical barrier" along the entire Mexican border; and voters should have to re-register every four years as well as show a government-issued photo ID in order to participate in an election.

What do Republican activists want? This is what they want.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Good Posts

One of the things I really like about Daily Kos is their daily roundup of excellent posts on the site. There are a bunch of good ones tonight in their roundup.

The ones that struck me the most were:

Republican Masochism....

The Day Bobby Died....

and most especially

I believe that good will overcome evil.

I've long believed that the most important day in the politics of the 20th Century was the day Bobby was assassinated. That was the day the liberals went into hiding, if not outright exile. From that day to the point Reagan was elected was sort of a stasis, then the long plunge into the undoing of a century's worth of progressive reforms. The Day Bobby Died... isnt so much an analysis of the effects as a reflection on the day, but it struck me to the heart.

I believe... is a sort of manifest for liberal/progressives, almost a creed. Very good.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Quote of the Week

Although I no longer subscribe, I still read the Economist when I stumble across it anywhere. While I don't always agree with it, it is almost always well written and well thought out. So, the fact that their article this week on the dwindling of Bush-Blair alliance is very good is no surprise; the surprise comes in the snarky title to the piece: "Axis of Feeble"

(Thanks to Molly Ivins for pointing this piece out)

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