Thursday, May 31, 2007

Wow!

I don't even know what to say about this! (maybe yippee?)

The Republican National Committee, hit by a grass-roots donors' rebellion over President Bush's immigration policy, has fired all 65 of its telephone solicitors, Ralph Z. Hallow will report Friday in The Washington Times.

Faced with an estimated 40 percent fall-off in small-donor contributions and aging phone-bank equipment that the RNC said would cost too much to update, Anne Hathaway, the committee's chief of staff, summoned the solicitations staff last week and told them they were out of work, effective immediately, the fired staffers told The Times.

Yup, Pt II

Atrios sums it all up, too.....

Bush is staying in Iraq, and all of this is about "sensible" Republicans having excuses to let him keep doing so while David Broder pats them on the back.

That these dynamics are not obvious to everyone is very worrisome.

Yup

mcjoan at dKos pretty much sums it all up:

As usual, Digby finds it:

Friends of his from Texas were shocked recently to find him nearly wild-eyed, thumping himself on the chest three times while he repeated "I am the president!" He also made it clear he was setting Iraq up so his successor could not get out of "our country's destiny."

The only way out of Iraq is to force him out of Iraq, take the keys away, and stop his allowance.

Dobbs' Mania

One of the things that puzzles me these days is Lou Dobbs, of CNN fame, and his almost insane crusade against illegal immigrants and immigration in general. He's always seemed to me to be a generally moderate guy, if tending towards pro-big business, and his recent focus on and warnings over the 'War on the Middle Class' has bordered on the heroic. Thus, my dismay at his complete descent into insanity over the immigration issue.

He completely broke me with his recent lies, and subsequent snarky defense of those lies, about immigrants and leprosy. I'm sure there are lots of legitimate health concerns about unregulated immigration, but jesus freaking christ??!?!?! LEPROSY?!?!?! It's just sad to see what has always been (to me, at least... but what do I know? I always liked Tom Friedman, till the war) a voice of thoughtfulness and reason.

Brodsky Applauds Edwards

Art Brodsky, writing at TPM's 'cafe', applauds Edwards letter to the FCC from yesterday. It isn't often that a politician, let alone a candidate, does something that is Right and Good and Important. Personally, I'm glad to see it noted and rewarded.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Covert Schmovert

Glenn Greenwald does a masterful job of exploding the 'Plame wasn't covert' meme infecting the entire right-wing noise machine.

Pohhoretz Refutation

Norman (the Hun) Podhoretz had a particularly odious op-ed today in the Journal. It was thing of neo-con beauty, missing only blazing torches, jackboots, and screaming crowds in the Olympische Stade. Wispher at dKos has a brilliant reposte that skewers the argument point by point, and leave Norman a smoking corpse in the Kanzlerei motorcourt.

Clearly we should have promptly invaded their country at such an outrage and diplomacy be damned.

This seems a bit of reckless saber-rattling by someone who has never even held a saber. In the middle of a massive conflict in Iraq that is spiraling out of control, rising sentiments against the West, and constant worry that the Iraq War will spill over into a regional conflict, why in the world would you want Britain to suddenly pounce in and attack another country over 16 individuals that were not being harmed when Iran initiated diplomatic talks themselves?!? Sure Ahmadinejad played up the whole benefactor thing about how gracious he was to release them but we knew he’d do that as nothing more then political theater. The fact is that 16 Brits came home safely and Iran is still officially on the sideline while the Iraq war continues. Diplomacy has a purpose and this is a clear example of it.

...

The last nation we faced that threatened any kind of nuclear attack was the USSR. I don’t seem to recall any kind of backing down in the face of that. I seem to remember us winning the Cold War. Sorry... I mean World War III.

Winning the cold war without a single direct engagement and not having even one nuclear weapon fired on either side must be too old-fashioned for Mr. Podhoretz. Deterrence is clearly part of that Pre-9/11 World we hear derided so often.


And those are just the semi-snark-a-licious parts; read it all.

Thompson to Announce?

Looks like it!!

UPDATE.... Looks like it's confirmed in USAToday

Edwards Calls On FCC for More Open Net

Edwards writes a letter to the FCC.....

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Froomkin on Cheney

Well, Froomkin takes a knife to Cheney.....

...In responding to that charge, the special counsel evidently felt obliged to put Libby's crime in context. And that context is Dick Cheney.

Libby's lies, Fitzgerald wrote, "made impossible an accurate evaluation of the role that Mr. Libby and those with whom he worked played in the disclosure of information regarding Ms. Wilson's CIA employment and about the motivations for their actions."

...

It was established at trial that it was Cheney himself who first told Libby about Plame's identity as a CIA agent, in the course of complaining about criticisms of the administration's run-up to war leveled by her husband, former ambassador Joseph Wilson. And, as Fitzgerald notes: "The evidence at trial further established that when the investigation began, Mr. Libby kept the Vice President apprised of his shifting accounts of how he claimed to have learned about Ms. Wilson's CIA employment."

The investigation, Fitzgerald writes, "was necessary to determine whether there was concerted action by any combination of the officials known to have disclosed the information about Ms. Plame to the media as anonymous sources, and also whether any of those who were involved acted at the direction of others. This was particularly important in light of Mr. Libby's statement to the FBI that he may have discussed Ms. Wilson's employment with reporters at the specific direction of the Vice President." (My italics.)

Not clear on the concept yet? Fitzgerald adds: "To accept the argument that Mr. Libby's prosecution is the inappropriate product of an investigation that should have been closed at an early stage, one must accept the proposition that the investigation should have been closed after at least three high-ranking government officials were identified as having disclosed to reporters classified information about covert agent Valerie Wilson, where the account of one of them was directly contradicted by other witnesses, where there was reason to believe that some of the relevant activity may have been coordinated, and where there was an indication from Mr. Libby himself that his disclosures to the press may have been personally sanctioned by the Vice President." (My [bold].)

...

"There is a cloud over what the Vice President did that week. . . . He had those meetings. He sent Libby off to [meet then-New York Times reporter] Judith Miller at the St. Regis Hotel. At that meeting, the two-hour meeting, the defendant talked about the wife. We didn't put that cloud there. That cloud remains because the defendant has obstructed justice and lied about what happened. . . .

"That's not something that we put there. That cloud is something that we just can't pretend isn't there."

To those of us watching the investigation and trial unfold, Cheney's presence behind the scenes has emerged in glimpses and hints. (The defense's decision not to call Cheney to the stand remains a massive bummer.) But I suspect that people looking back on this story will see it with greater clarity: As a blatant -- and thus far successful -- cover-up for the vice president.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Happy Memorial Day

Thank a vet or active duty serviceperson and then do everything you can to stop this stupid 'war'.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Memorial To A Son Lost

Andrew Bacevich, who has been an outspoken (ex-military) opponent of the war, recently lost his son in Iraq. He has a moving op-ed in today's WaPo.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

The Right vs The Good

Kevin has a brilliant, almost philosophical piece up today at PA. As a reformed economist, it almost made me cry.

Veto This

Steve Benen, pitchhitting at TPM, has a post this morning about the Repug Big Three bashing Hillary and Obama for voting against the (gutless, pointless, useless) funding bill the other day. He posits a question for them:

But I have a quick follow up question: If opposing money for the troops in a time of war is necessarily anti-military and un-American, why did Bush reject war funding less than a month ago? If supporting the military means supporting funding measures, didn't the president deny those in uniform the resources they need?

Or is it more likely that rejecting funding for the troops in a time of war is perfectly acceptable to Republicans, just so long as they think there's a good reason to do so?


I still think they should have followed Edwards' advice (admittedly neither he nor I have to deal with the politcal consequences) of just sending the original bill back repeatedly and letting Bush veto it.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Breaking News.... Joe Klein Still an Asshole

We go to Glenn for the details.....

In Ethics News....

...and with Congress, ethics is always news! The hotly debated Ethics bill passed the House overwhelmingly today, after, apparently, a LOT of arm-twisting:

The new proposals, which in the end passed overwhelmingly, would expand the information available about how business is done on Capitol Hill and make it available online. They would provide expanded, more frequent and Internet-accessible reporting of lobbyist-paid contributions and sponsorships, and would for the first time impose prison terms for criminal rule-breakers. They would also require strict new disclosure of "bundled" campaign contributions that lobbyists collect and pass on to lawmakers' campaigns. Yesterday's legislation passed 396 to 22.

Toothless Funding Bill Passes

I don't so much mind it passing, that seemed pre-ordained. What bugs the hell out of me is the margins by which this abortion passed. 80-14 in the SENATE?!?!?! WTF? Did these morons not take notes last November?

Kos has a great post reminding us that things ebb and flow, and that we should get mad, but not give up. I concur, but I'm going to be very mad for a long time.

Executive Pay-jinks

One of the economic statistic pointed to repeatedly as underlying the growing economic disparity in this country is the staggering increase in the growth of executive pay relative to 'line worker' pay. There's an article out in the NYTimes that shows how ridiculous this is.

Kevin Drum has an insightful commentary on this.

More Gay Translators Fired

Well, when the terrorists DO hit us again, we can boldly claim we kept the fags out of the military! In another show of christofascist brilliance, 58 Arab language translators were drummed out for being gay. God knows what else they're doing with that gift of tongues!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

More Olbermania

Keith went off tonight on the Neville Chamberlain-ian fold by the Congressional Dems. It was probably the best of his Special Comments so far. Go watch!

Edwards Slams GWOT

Big speech at the CFR..... pretty good overall, I thought. TPM has the text.

Goodling

Firedoglake has COMPLETE blog coverage of the testimony (nine segments at last count)

Good thing she got immunity, or she'd be toast.

Update: DK has liveblog coverage too

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Kentucky Race Set

Fletcher (ick) and Beshear (yay!) won the Repug and Dem primaries, both with enough (barely) to avoid runoffs. This will turn into a straight up good vs evil race, because it's hard to get more dirty than Fletcher (he's already under indictment).

Jr High Gonzo

This just about sums it all up.....

Congress Caves

On two fronts..... first it appears the funding bill will have no strings attached (altho there is some rumbling that there will be stuff attached that might still force a Bush veto, so who knows?) and second, the long awaited ethics/lobbying reform bill is going to be but a weak shadow of what was expected; greed kills, absolute greed apparently kills absolutely.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Copyright Inanity

The re-writing of copyright laws recently, and the whole insane expansion of the intellectual copyright thought-police, has driven me crazy. Apparently, they're trying to drive me competely over the edge.

Cutty Sark Burns

CNN is reporting that the classic clipper ship Cutty Sark, under repair at its display location in London,was damaged by a fire this morning. The ship was undergoing refurbishing, so much of it had been removed to storage, but initial reports are that several decks and framing were damaged. The cause has not yet been determined.

Any boy who has every built a model ship has probably built a model of the Cutty Sark; and probably drove his dad nuts helping him try to rig it. It's one of those classic pieces of history that we all share. It just struck a chord when I heard.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

We Rule the Internet!

Speaking of WaPo, they have a great article today on how the Dems are much farther ahead of the Repugs in mastery and use of the internet. It's not earth-shattering news, but it's interesting to see it all laid out.

"What was once seen as a liability for Democrats and progressives in the past -- they couldn't get 20 people to agree to the same thing, they could never finish anything, they couldn't stay on message -- is now an asset," Leyden said. "All this talking and discussing and fighting energizes everyone, involves everyone, and gets people totally into it."

If conservatives have mastered talk radio -- with Limbaugh as the undisputed king of the AM dial -- those on the left hope to achieve the same dominance on the Internet. Daily Kos, a sounding board for opposition to Bush and the Iraq war, among other topics, leads most political blogs in Web traffic and notoriety. Last year, the site spawned Yearly Kos, the first political blogger convention. Its founder, Markos Moulitsas Zúniga, refers to himself as the site's "mayor," with everyone else "doing their own thing, managing their own projects, while I keep the plumbing running."

...

"Sure, conservatives can point to the Dan Rather controversy and the Swift boat episode as a measure of their success online. But that's it," Moulitsas said. "Progressives can claim to an actual movement that raises a lot of money, that helps put politicians in office. . . . Progressives can claim to actually having communities online, where an average Joe can have a voice, and not just a radio personality who happens to write a blog, too."

Moulitsas was referring to Hugh Hewitt, a blogger and host of "The Hugh Hewitt Show." His blog is on TownHall, one of the most popular conservative sites. The site is owned by Salem Communications.

...

"But look at the short history of online politics," Glover said. "For Republicans, the Internet is where bad things happen. Take [former U.S. senator] George Allen and his 'macaca' moment. . . . You can kind of understand why Republicans have this almost instinctive fear of the Internet, where the mob rules."

...

"Sometimes I wonder if it will take losing the White House for the Republicans to take the Internet more seriously," Turk said.

Signs of Hope?

There are signs, according to WaPo, that the White House is willing to considering going back to the ISG report and accepting benchmarks. I'll believe it when it happens (and when Dumbfuck doesn't singing-statement it into oblivion) but it's a hopeful sign.

No Mo Confidence

The no-confidence vote on Gonzo is approaching in the Senate. If (one or more of) your Senator is a Repug (poor you), pressure him/her to vote against Gonzales. Write, call, fax, whatever them and encourage your friends to do so too. Let's stoke the fires.

Hurray for Harry!

This is a great idea, and a slap at Bush,too, which is ALWAYS a great idea. I've often wondered why they didn't just NOT adjourn for recesses, but I suppose, procedurally they have to, so this is a good 'fix'.

Iraq and the Growth of Terrorism

I'd seen the original article the other but kind of ignored it as it seemed so intuitively obvious (which of course means that Bu$hCo is of the diametrically opposed point of view.) Steve Benen at TPM makes a great post today summarizing why Iraq is fostering terrorism as opposed to squashing it, and channels Kevin Drum in the process. Read it and weep.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Iraq Funding Mess

mcjoan at dKos has a good alternative to just caving to Dumbfuck:

There's another option, one that we know now is supported by a majority (albeit slim) of Democrats in the House and Senate. Give the President his money now for the remainder of FY 2007, or for the next 9 months. Without benchmarks, without goals, waivable or otherwise. And, when offering this legislation, advise the President that this money should be used to plan the redeployment of troops out of Iraq, because after March 31, 2008 (in accordance with the Iraq Study Group) he won't get any more money.


She's responding to Greg Sargent's post at TPM, which is also worth a read.

Immigration Bill

I dont really have much reaction to the mishmash bill that came out yesterday. Ultimately, only two things will work to reduce the flow.....1) massive punishment for people hiring illegals; until the cost of being caught is so great it overcomes the profit of super-cheap labor, companies (and individuals) will continue to hire illegals, providing incentive to come and 2) making other countries more economically competitive with the U.S. (or alternately, the apparent Repug plan of making the U.S. more third world) so that the advantage of moving from there to here is lessened.

Kevin pretty well sums up my ennui.

Summary Du Jour

Not much news of note today (which is good, cuz I'm far more interested in sitting outside and basking in the sun). The big news is the collapse of 'negotiations' between Congress and the collection of dumbfuck obstructionists at 1600 Pennsylvania. I just don't have a clue where this will end up or what to do in the short term about resolving it. We might have the votes to impeach Bush and or Cheney, but we probably don't have the votes to remove. Barring him humping Barney during a press conference, or being revealed to be a Wicca child molestor abortionist, there's just no way to get rid of him short of waiting him out. Sigh.

My personal inclination, as noted often below, is to just keep sending the same damned bill over and over, and let him veto his ass off. He can only claim the Dems arent funding the troop for so long before SOMEONE in the MSM notices the string of vetoes (altho, thus far, they apparently havent much noted the first one.....)

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Oh God, Here We Go Again

Per WaPo, scientists are casting doubt on the scientific analysis of the bullets recovered in the JFK shooting and what it means viz multiple shooters. These aren't conspiracy wackos, but solid scientist, including a VERY serious retired FBI metallurgist.

I was a grade school kid in Dallas when JFK was shot. Like most Dallasites, I have been consumed over the years by the various arguments and delusions that have sprung up over the years. I don't think we'll ever really KNOW the answers, but searching for the truth is seldom the wrong thing to do.

This is Scary

Cheney's lawyers argued in court today that, basically, he was untouchable, period, end of sentence. Every night I pray for a War Crimes court SWAT team to swoop down and carry him off to the Hague.

Wolfowitz Out

CNN reports that Wolfowitz and the WB board have come to an agreement and he has stepped down. Sounds like he leaves thinking he's exonerated and the Bank has fallen back on the old 'mistakes were made' canard.

Bush Against Military Pay Raises AND Survivors' Benefits

Jesus, these are evil, unholy, monstrous people.

Wolfowitz?

Is he 'dead' yet? Haven't heard anything today.

Jeebus!

Bush refuses to answer whether he ordered Gonzo and Card to strong arm Ashcroft into signing off on the domestic spying mess while he was sedated in the hospital. Cuz, ya know, it's a national security, double-secret-probation kinda thing, dontcha see?

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Oh Goody!

Monica Goodling is scheduled to testify before Congress next Weds. And Susan Ralston (ex-Rove and Abramoff gofer) is negotiating for immunity. MORE POPCORN!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Yippee!

We have a war czar.... as you were.

Pope-A-Dope

Hey! You make a Nazi the Pope, you get a Pope who's a Nazi..... go purify yourself!

Edwards Issues War Challenge

John Edwards has issued a challenge to serving Senators Clinton and Obama to vote for Feingold's bill to defund the war. Let's add the pressure we can with calls and emails.

Update: Obama has apparently agreed to vote for it.

More Updating: Hillary signs on

Pinocchio Must Be Jealous

The DOJ is lying again! This time about Bogdon in Nevada.... With the amount of lying going on at DOJ, the nose growth must be amazing. Cyrano de Bergerac for AG?

Falwell Dead at 73

Jerry Falwell (I will NOT call him Reverend!) died this morning, of apparent heart failure. This is a big blow for millenial Christianists, but a big boon for Christians. I have to keep fighting this urge to find a church carillon and playing a rousing chorus of 'Ding Dong, the Witch is Dead!'

Update: Carpetbagger has a CV of Falwell's evil lunacy......

I was reminded this evening of Bette Davis' response of 'glee' to Joan Crawford's death. When told she should only speak good of the dead, she supposedly responded, "She's dead? Good!" My feelings in a nutshell.

Apparently, Conservatives Want ME for Prez!

Professor Stephen Bainbridge, who tends to lean right, has an interesting post with a list of the qualities he wants in a Presidential Candidate.... Amazingly, the most qualified person seems to be...... ME! The GOP can call me anytime, but I'll only run if can run as a Dem too.... or maybe anarchosocialist libertarian!

Here's the list, with my qualifications checked off!

Update: In fact, as long as we're on the subject of useless Presidential criteria, here's some more things I'd like to see in the next President:

  • Knows which wine to match with the foie gras-stuffed quail being served at a state dinner [check]
  • Won't wink at the Queen [check...altho I do wink at queens......]
  • Doesn't hunt, fish, or go with girls who do [check]
  • Smokes cigars [check]
  • Is sometimes accused of having a metrosexual streak [check the bf calls me Frazier]
  • Only drinks beer with foods that would score at least 10,000 on the Scoville scale [check-ish.... maybe we can compromise at 2500?]
  • Can credibly debate the relative claims of The Matrix, Star Wars, Bladerunner, and Star Trek II to be the greatest science fiction movie of all time [check]
  • Can credibly debate the relative claims of The Who and Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band to be the world's greatest rock and roll band [miss.... I'd still pick the Stones]
  • Came from a state that didn't secede [check/miss... born in Texas, but now a Californian]
  • Can recite at least one Monty Python skit from memory [CHECK! Only one? You fag!]
  • Can credibly debate the relative claims of Blazing Saddles, The Producers, and Young Frankenstein to be Mel Brook's best movie, while explaining why Spaceballs is a candidate for the worst movie ever [check... but could never pick]
  • Has never sat through an entire Woody Allen movie, an entire Nascar race, or an entire Dixie Chicks concert [does 2 for 3 count? I do like Woody Allen]
  • Wouldn't camp out 5 days to get Garth Brooks tickets even if s/he was camping at the time [Check]
  • Went to Germany on vacation because s/he couldn't find a highway with high enough speed limits in the US [Check-ish... haven't but would!]
  • Prefers football to basketball to baseball to soccer [CHECK...A-fucking-men!]
  • Doesn't play golf [Check]
  • Doesn't bowl [Check]
  • Has no kids to foist subsequent generations of politicians on us [CHECK!]
  • Has a spouse with no political ambitions [Check.... makes him comatose!]
  • Lives with at least one golden retriever [Had one as a kid... no yard now]

Hagel to Run?

Couldn't we get Hegel instead? WaPo has more.....

Stupid MeatPuppet BigHaired Blowhard Report

And let Allah sort them out, Rick?

Mini Update

Sorry was out of pocket all day today (Monday). Fortunately, it doesn't appear there was much news of import. The big news is the resignation of McNulty at DOJ, and the possible ramifications of that. From what I've read/heard, it sounds like McNulty, despite being the #2 guy, wasn't in the inner circle, and the feelings between those on the inside and McNulty are not the warmest. What this promises for the ongoing investigations is interesting, since McNulty appears to be pissed off that he was strung along by his briefers for earlier testimony that he's since had to amend and correct. If he's mad enough, some more truth might leak out and that would be both enlightening and entertaining.

WaPo Coverage

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Why the MSM Sucks....

Well, one reason, anyway.......

Several news reports this week about Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards illustrate the flawed ways in which media too often treat the champions of progressive economic policies; among them:

  • Media often give short shrift to the actual substance of progressive proposals, focusing instead on their cost.

  • Media portray wealthy candidates who advocate progressive economic proposals as out-of-touch hypocrites. Bizarrely, wealthy candidates who advocate conservative economic policies that would actually enrich themselves often escape similar scrutiny of their personal finances.


Friday, May 11, 2007

QOTD, Pt II

From Big Dick (in a Faux News interview):

We didn't get elected to be popular," he said. "We didn't get elected to worry just about the fate of the Republican Party.

Well, they worked that well. They are about as unpopular as it's possible to be while Texas and Alabama are allowed to participate. And if they're worried aboutt he fate of the Repug party, they should be. Their scurrilous activites over the past 6 years have pretty much ripped the guts out of the GOP.

BUBONIC PLAGUE!?!?!

From Cliff Schecter, the news that bubonic plague is in Denver..... his summary says it best:

Gosh we're lucky that FEMA and the CDC are all well funded and professionally staffed.

QOTD

From Cheers and Jeers summary of comments on DKos:

Politics is like driving. To go backward, put it in R. To go forward, put it in D. (TrueBlueMajority)

Do I Make Ya Horneeeee, Baby?

Mitt apparently hopes so.......

Goodling Gets Immunity

Oh Goody! This should get fun!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

McKay, Iglesias: Atty Scandal to Grow

TPM has a good post on the Seattle Times article featuring McKay and Iglesias. But the quote from the Times in the post is just devastating:

McKay said he began to have concerns about politics entering the Justice Department in early 2005, when Gonzales addressed all of the country's U.S. attorneys in Scottsdale, Ariz., shortly after he took over as attorney general.

"His first speech to us was a 'you work for the White House' speech," McKay recalled. " 'I work for the White House, you work for the White House.' "

McKay said he thought at the time, "He couldn't have meant that speech," given the traditional independence of U.S. Attorneys. "It turns out he did."

He looked around the meeting room and caught the eyes of his colleagues, who gave him looks of surprise at Gonzales' remarks. "We were stunned at what he was saying."



mcjoan at dKos weighs in....




Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Pesky Wimmen Guvners!!

From CNN Situation Room.......In eerie echoes of Katrina, the Bush Administration responded today to Ks. Governor Sibelius' complaint of missing Natl. Guard and equipment, by deploying the 'Kathleen Blanco Defense'... they claimed they just do what the states tell 'em to do, and can't do ANYTHING unless they're asked. (Idle thoughts of whatever happened to the 'Decider' and the 'Commander Guy'!) Can we send Tony Snow back to the hospital? I want so bad to be mean and call him names, but I keep stopping since he's 'sick'.....

Update: dKos responds AND HOW!

UPUpdate: davenparts at dKos has a great post on how fucked up FEMA and disaster have been rendered by Bu$hCo, mostly because they thought they were too NICE to New Orleans... jeebus!

Good News, Bad News

...for Dems in latest CNN poll. A majority support both benchmarks and withdrawal dates in the funding bill, with softer numbers for Dems v. Bush when asked about who supports the troops. And Dem support appears softening. But, still overall good news.

It May Be Nothing.....

..but with these people, it's best never to bet that way. Remember this name, Leslie Fahrenkopf.

Fred Thompson, Man of the People

Complete with creaky ole pickemup truck and 'shabby boots'.....

Sunday, May 06, 2007

One Out, One In

Bush is losing lap-poodle Tony Blair soon, but is picking up a potential pet now that the French election is over. Domage, Segolene.....

Gay Republicans

A term that's always hit me like Nazi Jews..... anyway, John has a revealing post on what's wrong with these people today at Americablog.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Bounce, Baby, Bounce

Newsweek/MSNBC's latest poll has Dumbfuck dropping down to 28%. That's Jimmy Carter at his nadir territory; that's lower that George HW Bush; that's suicidal depression territory.

Just In: Broder is at his desk, still waiting for signs of a bounce......

Friday, May 04, 2007

Guns on Campus

With all the right-wingnuttery over the fact that the VT kids should have fought back, and COULD have, if not for the fact that VT bans weapons on campus, BillinPortland at dKos has the best comment on that, in his discussion of today's anniversary of the Kent State shootings:

P.S. Imagine if all the students [at Kent State] had been allowed to walk around with concealed weapons, a concept that makes Republicans drool in the wake of the Virginia Tech shootings. That would've worked out swell, huh.

Edwards Says "OUT!"

Edwards came out today and basically said, 'Get out, now. Stop screwing around and leave.'

This is deja vu all over again. We saw it in Vietnam and we saw it earlier this year. We don't need any more non-binding resolutions or big statements; we need to end the war. I've been in Washington, so I understand the urge to make a statement - but in this situation, statements can be an excuse for inaction. Congress has a clear choice - they can talk about ending the war, or they can just end it. The only way for Congress to end the war is to cut off the money for it, and they should concentrate on doing just that. Anything else is just noise.


Couldn't have said it better.

Why Public/Private Health Insurance Will Never Work

Cuz the private insurance companies are heartless, evil bastards. There may be help coming from Congress.... maybe....

MSNBC Poll

There's an interactive poll at MSNBC allowing participants to rate the GOP candidates. It also shows before and after ratings for each candidate. Looks like the big losers were McCain and Giuliani, the big winner was Ron Paul, and the rest pretty much just treaded water. Hillary vs Ron Paul.... that would be a fun race (shoot me now, Lord!)

Is Karl an Atheist?

That would be too sweet, but Christopher Hitchens says it's so. And it's not like Hitchens drinks or anything, so it MUST be true! Dobson must be thrilled to have that little gem out.

Close to Home

Did Harriet Miers 'fire' LA US Atty Debra Wang?

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Immigration Ideas From Britain?

Open borders might work? Could be.

Down in Flames

At dKos, desmogblog deconstructs (okay, dismantles) Glenn Beck's global warming special on CNN tonight. Why does CNN put up with this moronic piece of human sludge (no, no, Glenn Beck, not Suzanne Malveaux!)

Note: I have to admit I'm prejudiced against Beck.... my bf thinks he's HOT! Someone explain to me how I got involved with a crazy person?!?!?!!?

Things that Make Ya Go Hmmmmmm...

Two late posts on TPM (here and here) that shed more light into the shadowy cesspit of the US Atty scandal.

Repug Debate Summary

I'm not a Republican, so I'm sort of in the position of trying to judge a gorilla beauty contest. On the whole, it wasn't as horrible as I'd expected (hoped?), but I certainly don't want any of them in the WH. I'd say Romney and Huckabee probably came off the best, or perhaps, the least unpalatable; Paul and Tancredo came of the worst- Tancredo as the loony right, and Paul as the loony libertarian right (didn't he run for Prez as a Libertarian at one point?) They all avoided any seriously controversial (from the nutjob Repug base POV) statements, with the exception of Rudy, who came out pro-life(ish....)

Of the lot, and given the dynamics of the campaign so far, I'd say Romney probably will be the nominee, IF (MAJOR IF) he can get around the whole Mormon thing. He just looks the most Presidential of the lot, and he's willing to say anything anyone wants to hear. Altho, I did find myself wondering the whole time if he was wearing his holy underwear.

UPDATE: Let me echo Kevin in his reaction to Romney. I'm not saying above that he struck me as the best of the bunch, just as the one most likely to crawl out of the mudpit.

Froomkin on WH Involvement

Dan observes the tightening noose that is the WH involvement in creating/managing the DOJ/US Atty scandal.

Reader Survey

They (BlogAds, I think) are running their annual Blog Reader Survey. If you've got the time (15-20 mins), head on over and take it.

How True

One of the joys of DailyKos, a generally dark and dreary place, is Cheers and Jeers. Today they pretty well sum up the intellectual depth of Bu$hCo:

And now...Great Moments in Presidential Greatness!

George Washington: "I have no other view than to promote the public good, and am unambitious of honors not founded in the approbation of my Country."

Abraham Lincoln: "With malice toward none, and with charity for all..."

Franklin Roosevelt: "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."

George W. Bush: "I'm the commander guy!!"

Now back to Cheers and Jeers...


Note: I'm not slamming DK.... it's a site I visit multiple times during the day, and generally read in depth. It's just that given the current situation(s), the content is generally dark and often depressing. The people that post regularly are all progressives with heart and brains and the ability to analyze news in depth, which is why I say it's dark and dreary, since the news is unremittingly dark and dreary, altho less so than, oh so, BEFORE last Nov 7th.

Another Fine Mess....

A really good wrap-up of the OTHER Monica Goodling mess at TPM......

The accusation focuses on Goodling's meddling in a particular group of hires: entry-level attorneys working for acting or interim U.S. attorneys -- in other words, U.S.A.s who had not been confirmed by the Senate. The New York Times explains:

...when an interim United States attorney is in place, one who has not been confirmed by the Senate, he or she must seek the approval of officials at department headquarters [to hire attorneys], a rule that perhaps allowed Ms. Goodling to investigate the political backgrounds of the applicants.

As the Justice Department has underlined, if Goodling was checking to see if these applicants were Republicans before hiring them, that would be against the law.


An interesting note at the end of the post:

Note: The Wall Street Journal adds some insight into what the Justice Department deems newsworthy:

In mid-March, The Wall Street Journal sought information from the Justice Department on Ms. Goodling's role in the selection of [entry-level assistant U.S. attorneys]. The department turned down a request for expedited handling of the Journal's query, citing that it "does not believe the specific topic of your request is the subject of widespread and exceptional media interest."

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Froomkin on the Veto

Froomkin has great coverage on the veto situation today (as usual). His opening 'summation':

With the public resoundingly against him, Republican support wearing thin, and -- most importantly -- Congress in Democratic hands, President Bush today finds himself in the unusual position of actually having to negotiate.

The question is: Does he have it in him?

A day after vetoing legislation that would have established a timetable for withdrawal from Iraq, Bush has invited congressional leaders to the White House for a sit-down.

"I am confident that with goodwill on both sides, we can agree on a bill that gets our troops the money and flexibility they need as soon as possible," Bush said in a short televised address last night, announcing the veto.

But the president's language was inflexible: "It makes no sense to tell the enemy when you plan to start withdrawing," he said. "All the terrorists would have to do is mark their calendars and gather their strength -- and begin plotting how to overthrow the government and take control of the country of Iraq. I believe setting a deadline for withdrawal would demoralize the Iraqi people, would encourage killers across the broader Middle East, and send a signal that America will not keep its commitments. Setting a deadline for withdrawal is setting a date for failure -- and that would be irresponsible."

With no apparent sense of irony, Bush described the Democratic plan as "a prescription for chaos and confusion."

So what happens now? Will Bush refuse to genuinely engage with his critics? (His traditional response to Democrats who disagree with him.) Will he try to find some way to make it look like he's compromising when he really isn't? (His traditional response to Republicans who disagree with him.) Or will he start talking in earnest about ways both sides can compromise?

The conventional wisdom is that the White House's big concession will be to entertain discussions about benchmarks for the Iraqi government. But it's important to keep in mind that the White House has been talking about such benchmarks for many months now. In his prime-time address in January, Bush even announced: "America will hold the Iraqi government to the benchmarks it has announced."

The administration has even previously indicated it had some deadlines in mind for those benchmarks. It's just that none of them have been met. On the same day in January that Bush made his announcement, senior administration officials promised that the Iraqis would deliver three additional Iraqi brigades to Baghdad by the end of February. That didn't happen. And the following day, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice acknowledged in Senate testimony that without progress toward some key benchmarks within "one or two months . . . this plan is not going to work." It's now been four months, with little or no progress. (For background and links, see my Thursday column, Keep Your Eye on the Benchmarks.)

So the central issue is not whether there are benchmarks, or even timetables. The central issue is whether failure to meet those benchmarks has any genuine consequences -- and whether those consequences include the withdrawal of American forces.

See any signs of 'good will' or 'compromise'?

(Emphasis mine)

Brilliant Idea

Sen Kerry has started a fund to target vulnerable (and semi-vulnerable) Repug Senators next year, to try and 'splinter' the GOP support for Bush and the GOP's war. Brilliant!

DOJ Nightmare

TPM has a veritable potpourri of stories relating to the USAttornies firings today. This is getting deeper, and to borrow a phrase from TPMuckraker... muckier.

Whither Congress?

Now that Dumbfuck has waved his mighty veto pen (for only the second time! after six years of the DUMBEST Congresses on record!), Congress is pondering where to go from here. Greg Sargent, at TPM, has a good post today, with input from a congressional aide. There seem to be two approaches developing followings, neither of which is my favorite (offering him the same bill, with a shorter withdrawal date- repeating with shorter dates each time it's vetoed.)

First is the one of the two, I prefer; giving him the funding but for a shorter period, three-six months. I like this better than the other, the full funding bill with benchmarks, for two reasons: one) Bush will sign off on benchmarks and either 'signing statement' out his 'beautiful mind' or just ignoring them altogether and two) it will force the Repugs and the Blue Dog Dems to repeatedly signal their support of the war. The Repugs I want to see yoked to this war like Prometheus to his rock, and if the Blue Dogs want to join them, then fuck them, and chain them to the rock as well.

Not a pretty prospect for anyone, particularly the troops, who regardless of the path followed at the far end of Pennsylvania Av, are stuck in hell indefinitely.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Bush Vetoes Troop Funding

Some support, Dumbfuck!

More McCain Bashing

Can't get enough of this stuff:

Does McCain's war support depend entirely upon who started the war? It would seem so. McCain doesn't appreciate having this flip-flop pointed out, however.

Matt David, McCain's campaign spokesman, said it is "intellectually dishonest" to compare Iraq to Haiti and Somalia because of the volatility now in the Middle East and terrorist threat.

"Haitians and Somalians do not want to follow us home and attack us on American soil," David said in a statement.

Now that's interesting. Does that mean McCain doesn't believe al Qaeda was in Somalia? The 9/11 Commission would beg to differ [pdf]:

Bin Ladin said in his ABC interview that he and his followers had been preparing in Somalia for another long struggle, like that against the Soviets in Afghanistan, but "the United States rushed out of Somalia in shame and disgrace." Citing the Soviet army’s withdrawal from Afghanistan as proof that a ragged army of dedicated Muslims could overcome a superpower, he told the interviewer:"We are certain that we shall—with the grace of Allah—prevail
over the Americans."He went on to warn that "If the present injustice continues . . . , it will inevitably move the battle to American soil."

Of course the Haitians and Somalians didn't want to follow us home. The Iraqis don't want to follow us home. They want nothing more to do with Americans at all. The Somalians, the Haitians, and the Iraqis didn't attack us in the first place and don't want to attack us now. The threat then, and the threat now is al Qaeda and bin Laden (who, by the way, is still alive and free). Bin Laden does not need the excuse of Somalia, or Haiti, or Iraq to want to attack the United States.

Should I Stay or Should I Go-o.....

Josh (and a reader) have good thoughts on the question of whether the US is the problem or the solution in Iraq. It's inevitable that we leave, the question really only boils to down to when. And if, as seems most likely, we are as much a catalyst for peace in Iraq, we are also an immense source of the problem- our presence both inflames the insurgents and prevents the situation from stabilizing in 'normal' patterns.

Blair Gone?

We knew Tony Blair was going to step down soon, but apparently it's pretty close to immediately.

Tony Blair has indicated that Gordon Brown is likely to replace him as Prime Minister within a matter of weeks.

"Within the next few weeks I won't be Prime Minister of this country. In all probability, a Scot will become Prime Minister of the United Kingdom," Mr Blair told party supporters at a Labour rally in Edinburgh.

...

With the party braced for a disastrous night at the polls on Thursday, Mr Blair is seeking to prevent disillusionment over his own premiership from overshadowing the arrival of his successor.

There has been growing speculation Mr Blair will announce his resignation next week and then stand down towards the end of next month, with June 30 emerging as the favourite date.

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