Saturday, October 28, 2006

Leadership that Deserves Support; Or: Absolute Cluelessness in Charge

The White House on Iraq: Anyone have any ideas?


In an appearance on the NewsHour last night, National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley was asked what the American people should have "taken away" from the press conference. His answer: "I think the president gave a very balanced and sober assessment of the situation that we're in, made it clear that there are real challenges, made it clear that, while our basic objective remains the same, we have adapted and made changes in how to pursue that objectives, would be making more changes in the future, that he was open to any constructive ideas, because obviously one thing we can all agree on – I think Senator Biden would agree – we need to succeed in Iraq. It's too important for the country. So I think you saw an openness to be receptive to ideas, but also a steadfastness that we cannot afford to lose in Iraq."

Got that? On the war in Iraq -- the centerpiece of his administration, the central front in "the decisive ideological struggle of the 21st century" -- the president is . . . well, he's open to ideas, if anyone's got them.

We're not sure what's more troubling here: That this is all that the president has to offer, that the national security advisor can't do a better job of spinning it, or that the White House Communications Office thought so much of Hadley's comments that it just e-mailed them to reporters under the headline, "In Case You Missed It."
Link. (Emphasis added.)

Pathetic... Our Leader's pathetic, "his" administration is pathetic, and most pathetic of all is that our nation is lead by the, well, the leaders that we have....

More Lies; Today's Literary Analysis: How Political Context Changes the Quality of a Literary Work

Allen, Webb, truth, fiction

The Traditional Values Coalition is calling on Jim Webb to withdraw from the Senate race in Virginia because of what it calls "XXX-rated writing" in some of his novels.

Never mind that Webb's novels are fiction -- or, as TVC's executive director puts it in the group's press release, "fiction." Never mind that the book singled out in TVC's press release -- Webb's "Lost Soldiers" -- was praised at the time of its publication by Republican Sen. John McCain, who said it "captures well the lingering scars of the war" in Vietnam.


And never mind that leading lights on the right have written a fair amount of smut for smut's sake. There's a "pouting sex kitten," an "exotic mistress" and "after-bout inhalation" in Newt Gingrich's "1945. " In Lynne Cheney's 1981 novel "Sisters," the female heroine sees two women in a lesbian embrace and feels "curiously moved, curiously envious of them." And in Scooter Libby's 1998 book, "The Apprentice," a 10-year-old girl is placed in a cage with a bear that has been "trained to couple with young girls."

Conclusion: The quality of an unaltered literary work changes when the author changes his party affiliation! Amazing!

How Low They Go!

Fear and hate, laid on a foundation of absolute lies: Is there anything else for Our Leaders' enablers to run on?

Short answer: No. That's the entire 2006 platform.
Rush Limbaugh, Michael J. Fox and the cruelty within


[I]t's really pretty impossible to watch Limbaugh mock Fox for his stem-cell TV spot without thinking that Rush is pretty rotten at the core. Limbaugh didn't just suggest that Fox was faking the symptoms of Parkinson's disease in his advertisement for Claire McCaskill; he took things a step further by acting out the shaking himself -- all while saying that Fox was the one behaving in a "shameless" way.

Limbaugh says that Democrats always do this: They trot out someone who's a victim of something or other and thereby make it impossible to engage in reasoned debate. He's not the first one to make that claim; it's the same argument Ann Coulter makes about family members who lost loved ones on 9/11 and have the audacity to say that they wish the Bush administration were doing more to stop the next terrorist attack.

Is there anything to this argument? Maybe, but what's the alternative? Are Limbaugh and Coulter suggesting that we deny those most directly affected by government policies any role in debating them? Should wealthy executives be silenced during discussions of tax cuts? Should the automakers be denied a say in any debate over fuel economy standards? Did Limbaugh complain this week when George W. Bush said that the United States has to stay the course in Iraq -- well, not "stay the course, " but you know what we mean -- out of allegiance to "the husbands who have lost their partners in life ... children who won't ever see their mom and dad again ... and to the families who still have loved ones in harm's way"?

It's OK for Dick Cheney and the Republican National Committee to suggest that we'll all die at the hands of terrorists if Democrats are elected in November, but it's somehow unfair for a guy suffering from Parkinson's disease to say that he hopes Missourians elect a senator who supports stem-cell research?

Friday, October 27, 2006

And Speaking of Stealing Elections....

Here's how. Great school project....

A Great, Great Piece on the Fear and Risks of E-Voting

Ronnie Dugger nailed it -- in 1988. Here's the piece -- and it's essential, scary reading: that it was warned about and it's happening and getting worse and worse. It's twilight in America....

Iraq: The Real Problem

It's all the Iraqis' fault.

Our Leaders, Always Taking the High Road


For the Pro-Democracy Geeks Out There; How to Hack the Election (No News to Our Leaders)

Here's how.

Meanwhile, Ronnie Dugger wrote the definitive article (well, the Ur article) years before the technology -- and wingnuttery -- even existed.

It's essential reading and it's here.

Thank God We're Lead by Pro-Security Republicans, not Wishy-Washy Liberal Democrats (Cont'd)

....Rick Santorum is trying to save his Senate seat by getting voters focused on the threat of terrorism. The big finish? Santorum quotes Osama bin Laden as saying that "dealing with the pampered and effeminate Americans will be easy," then says: "Let me tell you. With the right leadership, he's got a surprise ahead. It won't be easy at all."

Now I feel secure, knowing that the terrorists will have a tough time defeating us....

Thursday, October 26, 2006


Back from the dead.... Explore the entire email database here. (Link found at Boing Boing.)

A Very Short Story

Bush told the truth. Hell froze.
- William Gibson

Everything that's Wrong with the Iraqi Debacle

Interesting: I felt that, really, having done so much damage to Iraq, we had no option but to stay the course til we made good. But, really, do Our Leaders have any intention -- let alone, like, an actual plan -- to make good for the gratuitous, pointless, unreasonable horror we brought? Well, if not, then made there is no reason to stay the course.

Meanwhile, our puppet doesn't seem very grateful; but then again, exacly why and for what should he be grateful?
An angry Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki disavowed a joint U.S.-Iraqi raid in the capital's Sadr City slum Wednesday, and criticized the top U.S. military and diplomatic representatives in Iraq for saying his government needs to set a timetable to curb violence in the country.

Al-Maliki spoke at a news conference a day after U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad said Iraqi leaders had agreed to set deadlines by year's end for achieving specific political and security goals laid out by the United States, including reining in militia groups.

"I affirm that this government represents the will of the people and no one has the right to impose a timetable on it," the prime minister said.

The prime minister dismissed U.S. talk of timelines as driven by the coming midterm elections in the United States. "I am positive that this is not the official policy of the American government but rather a result of the ongoing election campaign. And that does not concern us much," he said.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

The Budget

In a Flash image.

Staying the Course

If we're not staying the course, are cuttin' + runnin'? Obviously we're staying so what's the point? Just more election-time B.S. for the weak-minded voters? Do Our Leaders actually have a plan yet? Obviously, we have to stay; we brought so much horror to Iraq; we have a disaster we created to fix....

Our Leaders are Concerned About Us

Query why, if the 9/11 attacks were so bad, why do they hide the continuing harm from the attacks, to wit, the toxic crap to which people are still exposed around Ground Zero? Or is it that the local real estate interests are snuffing the debate for their own interests? [Link.]

Morning in America

I do not need to make dire predictions about the future, the ugly truth is told by the shame of the present.

When your Leader said he could take away your Bill of Rights on his own personal whim, you did nothing.

When your Leader said he could violate law based on some claimed power he has, you stayed silent.

When your Leader claimed he could inflict horrid acts of torture that break international laws honored by every democracy on earth, you surrendered.

When your Leader claimed the power to jail people without hearings and imprison people without justice, you gave in.

When your Leader claimed the power to detain people without charges, and inflict punishment and pain on unknown people without lawyers or law, you submitted.

When your Leader seized the power to invade your home without a warrant and take your body without a writ, you did nothing.

When your Leader claimed the power to take your privacy without a court and take your rights without a hearing, you gave in.

When your Leader said the Congress has no right to be involved in the policy of making war, you gave up.

When your Leader said your Courts have no responsiblity for upholding your Constitution without his permission, you stood down.
More here.

Freedom Spreads to America

The press here gets less and less free. Well, sure, if you count Big Media -- they're in thrall to Our Leaders and the GOP corrupters.

But okay, here's the ten worse, and, wow! look at all our allies on the list! And as for those who aren't our allies, when are Our Leaders going to liberate them? (Although I disagree with North Korea being #1. Dunno... think they're too poor to have any press at all....)

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

My Next Congressperson???

Backs up Bonnie Raitt and is not Sue Kelly and was interviewed by Steven Colbert. Just three major pluses....
An Endorsement for Congress

An unusually lively Democratic primary race in the 19th Congressional District last month ended with a resounding victory for John Hall, a singer-activist-politician who has spent a long time on the outskirts of renown and is now poised to move into the thick of it. Mr. Hall has been politically engaged for decades, having helped to organize the No Nukes concerts of the late 1970’s with friends like Jackson Browne, Bonnie Raitt and Graham Nash. But he has always been better known as a founding member of the 1970’s band Orleans, whose Lite-FM hits “Still the One” and “Dance With Me” can still worm into your brain and stay all day, if you let them.

Mr. Hall is still a musician, but he is not a political posturer or dabbler. As a member of the Ulster County Legislature, he helped to write the first zoning law in Saugerties, served two terms on the Saugerties Board of Education and was elected its president. He joined citizens’ groups to protect the Hudson River and to oppose plans for a nuclear plant in the Hudson Valley and then decided — spurred by disillusionment over the war in Iraq, among other things — to run for Congress.

Mr. Hall gave an impressive performance in winning over Democrats in the diverse 19th District, which covers all of Putnam County, most of Orange and parts of Dutchess, Westchester and Rockland, from West Point to Peekskill to Katonah. His platform is ambitious and coherent, with calls for universal health coverage, a return to fiscal discipline and a full-bore national effort to achieve energy independence. He blends a deep-blue idealism with a crisp command of details; it’s best not to get him started on “low-head” hydroelectric power, for instance, if your time is pressing.

The incumbent, Sue Kelly, entered Congress in the “Contract With America” class of 1994. She has nurtured a reputation as a moderate, occasionally annoying conservatives and straying from the party line on environmental votes. But she has mostly been a go-along-to-get-along party member, supporting the Bush administration’s tax cuts, stoutly defending its handling of the Iraq war and voting this month for President Bush’s dangerous bill on military commissions, a measure that affirms the administration’s ad-hoc subversion of cherished principles of justice and decency.

She is a rank-and-file loyalist in a party that is tired and fiscally reckless. On issues that Congress has bungled, and where independence would have been welcome — immigration, or homeland security, a particularly pressing topic in a district with a nuclear plant in its backyard — Ms. Kelly has not strayed far from the pack.

For voters in the 19th District who want a lawmaker of energy, steady conviction and clear principles, John Hall is the obvious choice. We enthusiastically endorse him for Congress.

Woodward: Despite "State of Denial", Still a Wanker

Decide for yourself;Woodward speaks:
I don't think Bush ever took directions from Cheney.
I'm in shock. But then again, Woodward's a serial dissembler or at least a fabulist....

Leadership We Need; Thank God We're not Lead by Liberal Democrats!

Baghdad still, three and one half years later, needs to be secured while W meets the generals and decides to... stay the course.

Heckuva job, Our Leaders!

Monday, October 23, 2006

'Nuff Said: What this Country is Coming to Thanks to Our Leaders' Genius and Love of America, Freedom and Democracy

The Cases of Lynne Stewart, Clive Stafford Smith, and Navy JAG Lawyer Charles Swift: Government Retaliation Against Attorneys for Terrorism Suspects
This is exactly what our country is now about and exactly what it is not supposed to be about.

Flip, Flop, Flip, Flop, Flip, Flop, Flip, Flop, Flip, Flop, Flop, Flop, Flop, Flop, Flop, Flop, Flop

Can't be talking about Our Leader -- Republicans never flip flop. That's why he -- and we -- will stay the course without any end in sight.

Of course, the fact that Osama supports and wants "Stay the Course" may -- or may not -- need a change in... I was going to say plans but no one who knows if there really are any plans other than staying the course aren't talking so I guess I want to say "a change in talking points."

And here's Time's alternative plan. Warning: may be a humor piece. I mean, bring the Sunnis back in... that's certainly ludicrous if not flat-out impossible.

Wait a minute, what's this...?
Bush to consult on changing Iraq tactics
By KEVIN FREKING, Associated Press WriterFri Oct 20, 5:36 PM ET

President Bush acknowledged Friday that "it's tough" in Iraq and said he would consult with American generals to see if a change in tactics is necessary to combat the escalating violence.
Link. You start with this and you might not end up staying the course....

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Flash! WaPo and the Times Have Dropped the Ball on Their Coverage of Our Leaders

Who'd'a thunk it??

The latest critique is here. See how the Grand Ole Media are failing us, let alone at a pivotal point in history.

Joke of the Day -- or Not

Barron's doesn't have a D.C. correspondent so much as water-carrying stooge for the current leadership. Here's his prediction for the coming elections.


The GOP Victory
Our analysis -- based on a race-by-race examination of campaign-finance data -- suggests that the GOP will hang on to both chambers, at least nominally. We expect the Republican majority in the House to fall by eight seats, to 224 of the chamber's 435. At the very worst, our analysis suggests, the party's loss could be as large as 14 seats, leaving a one-seat majority. But that is still a far cry from the 20-seat loss some are predicting. In the Senate, with 100 seats, we see the GOP winding up with 52, down three

JUBILANT DEMOCRATS SHOULD RECONSIDER their order for confetti and noisemakers. The Democrats, as widely reported, are expecting GOP-weary voters to flock to the polls in two weeks and hand them control of the House for the first time in 12 years -- and perhaps the Senate, as well. Even some Republicans privately confess that they are anticipating the election-day equivalent of Little Big Horn. Pardon our hubris, but we just don't see it.

We studied every single race -- all 435 House seats and 33 in the Senate -- and based our predictions about the outcome in almost every race on which candidate had the largest campaign war chest, a sign of superior grass-roots support. We ignore the polls.

Link (emphasis added).

I supposed this a faith-based analysis for a faith-based administration that has no use for, you know, reality.

My Wanker

My piece of crap Congress-person who cannot be voted out of office no matter how odious she is (hint: plenty), Sue Kelly (Crypto-fascist, N.Y. 19), finally shows at a debate.