Wednesday, November 30, 2005

So THAT'S What's Been Going On!

No wonder the CIA can't keep things straight.

(Thanks, Pablo!)

The Obsessional President

Is George W. Bush's obsession with Iraq fueled by a sense of divine mission? That's the disquieting inference that I'm drawing from this article by Sy Hersh in The New Yorker. Key paragraph:

“The President is more determined than ever to stay the course,” [a] former defense official said. “He doesn’t feel any pain. Bush is a believer in the adage ‘People may suffer and die, but the Church advances.’ ” He said that the President had become more detached, leaving more issues to Karl Rove and Vice-President Cheney. “They keep him in the gray world of religious idealism, where he wants to be anyway,” the former defense official said. Bush’s public appearances, for example, are generally scheduled in front of friendly audiences, most often at military bases. Four decades ago, President Lyndon Johnson, who was also confronted with an increasingly unpopular war, was limited to similar public forums. “Johnson knew he was a prisoner in the White House,” the former official said, “but Bush has no idea.”

We are so screwed.

The Real Obscenity is the Right Wing's Defense of Torture

If you're offended by rough language, don't read this post from The Rude Pundit, via Buzzflash. But its message is pure: the defense of torture by far right lunatic organizations like NewsMax is the true obscenity. There is no moral depth to which the conservative cheerleaders and leadership of the Republican Party will not sink.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Want a Democratic House of Representatives?

Then start here.

Delaware Dem Speaks for Me

Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war--on the Republicans.

No more "high road". This is combat. I want Democrats with spine. I want victory over the right-wing bastards that are destroying my country. If the Republicans want to get down and dirty, I'm ready to get lower and dirtier. Nothing illegal--nothing dishonest--but I want results. If it takes being a sumbitch and exposing them for the corrupt, treasonous, lying garbage they are, so be it.

Let slip the dogs of war.

Cheney Possibly a "Nefarious Bastard"

Hey, I'm not sayin' it. Larry Wilkerson is sayin' it. I'm just passing it along in a burst of civic-mindedness.

The Corruption in Washington is NOT Bipartisan

It is overwhelmingly Republican. There are currently at least a dozen prominent Republicans in Washington under investigation for corruption. Republican crook Duke Cunningham has just been forced to resign his seat in the House. The people involved with the Abramoff Scandal are overwhelmingly conservative Republicans. Josh Marshall has some thoughts on the situation here.

BTW, don't buy the smear being leveled at Democratic Sen. Byron Dorgan of ND.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Nailing the "Clinton Did It Too" Lie

The Left Coaster thoroughly destroys the phony Administration argument that Bill Clinton believed the same things about Saddam that Bush did, and therefore Bush's invasion of Iraq was not an egregiously mistaken move. Bush's people have always argued that since Clinton bombed Iraq in 1998, he must have agreed with all of the neocons' assessments. Key section of the article:

Finally, and most importantly, if Clinton used the "same" intelligence to bomb Iraq in 1998, then wouldn't it be a natural question to ask whether the 1998 bombings destroyed any facilities/capabilities that Saddam Hussein had at that time? Well, it would be natural, say, for a 5-year old, but not for the Great Misleaders and their sheep.

As Bob Somerby
highlighted back then (emphasis mine):
On the June 15 [2003] Meet the Press, Wesley Clark offered an intriguing thought about those AWOL WMD:

RUSSERT: Was there an intelligence failure? Was the intelligence hyped, as Senator Joe Biden said? Was the president misled, or did he mislead the American people?

CLARK: Well, several things. First of all, all of us in the community who read intelligence believe that Saddam wanted these capabilities and he had some. We struck very hard in December of ’98, did everything we knew, all of his facilities. I think it was an effective set of strikes. Tony Zinni commanded that, called Operation Desert Fox, and I think that set them back a long ways.

In other words, Clinton took effective and carefully delineated action to weaken Saddam, probably crippling his WMD program. Bush went in like a bull in a china shop. I'll give you one guess which approach I think made more sense.

Bush: The "Gift" That Will Keep on Giving

Dave Zweifel in the Madison, Wisconsin Capital Times points out what many of us have been saying: that thanks to Bush and Cheney's ruinous financial management, our children and grandchildren will suffer. For me, the key section (which I found chilling) was this:

A front page of USA Today last week showed it all in graphic detail. If we continue on the same track we are today, our annual $319 billion deficit will be more than $4 trillion in 2050, when our grandkids are nearing retirement.

"We face a demographic tsunami," insists David Walker, the U.S. comptroller general. He compares the United States to Rome before the fall of the empire. The country faces deficits in its budget, its balance of payments, its savings and its leadership, he told USA Today.

This is both tragic and unconscionable. America will bitterly regret having "elected" Bush president.

Or more precisely, having allowed him and his cronies to seize power in 2000.

Wow! Check Out Newsie8200's List of Links

They provide huge amounts of political ammunition we can use to hammer the rightwingers. Go and indulge, my friends. You're sure to find something fun and intriguing.

A Powerful Attack Against Cheney's Historical Revisionism

And it's leveled by Tim Rutten in the Los Angeles Times. The gist of it is that Cheney's defense of the Administration's decision to invade Iraq is based on the crudest falsification of history imaginable and the uttering of the most completely bald-faced lies. The public is seeing through this more and more , and thus Cheney is damaging the very case he's trying to make. Take a look.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Bush Even Lies About His Lies

Rev. Andrew Greeley lays it out straight: Bush and Cheney not only lied through their teeth about the reasons for the Iraq War, they have lied about their previous deceptions. The key paragraph:

Is the administration lying about its lies? That many of the arguments in favor of the war were false is beyond question. Nor can there be any serious doubt that the new argument that it is irresponsible to question the old arguments is also false. But if a lie is a conscious effort to deceive, then the charge that the president and the men around him deliberately lied and are now lying again, then that issue must be left to heaven. It is enough to say they spread falsehoods three years because they had made up their minds that there had to be a war and are now spreading falsehoods about the original falsehoods. The president is not a man who likes to admit he was wrong. Therefore, one must cover up the mistakes.

How can America survive in the hands of people so morally bankrupt and dishonest?

Family Fun with Machine Guns

This is just weird. This a machine gun festival (in effect) in Oklahoma. I found it both fascinating and disturbing. And even though I'm a pro-gun rights Democrat, I was still amazed at how over the top Red State America can be.

(Courtesy of Lance Ehlers at Slowcurl.)

A School is Not a Business

Wonderful post on DKos this morning by teacherken. It introduces us to the thinking of Larry Cuban, a businessman and a historian of education. Cuban puts to rest the mistaken notion that so many business leaders have about public education, namely that a school can be run along business lines. The school, as opposed to a business, has no control over the raw material with which it works--it must, by law, accept everyone. I've made the same point myself on many occasions, but it's good to see my own views reinforced. Go and take look.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Kansas University Faculty Throws Down the Gauntlet

And it's against the absurd so-called "Intelligent Design" movement in their state. The KU Religion Department is offering a course that explicitly labels ID for what it is: mythology. This is good to see. Creationists, if they are ultimately victorious, will destroy science education in the United States. The KU faculty is making a courageous stand for reason. They need and deserve our support.

The Dark History of Cheney's Rise

This article in Truthout is genuinely frightening. It outlines the rise to power of America's real president, Dick Cheney. Cheney is as ruthless and evil a man as we have in public life. The opening of this article on his career grabbed me:

For his entire career, he sought untrammeled power. The Bush presidency and 9/11 finally gave it to him - and he's not about to give it up.

The hallmark of the Dick Cheney administration is its illegitimacy. Its essential method is bypassing established lines of authority; its goal is the concentration of unaccountable presidential power. When it matters, the regular operations of the CIA, Defense Department and State Department have been sidelined

You really need to read this.

Piece of Human Garbage Coulter Calls Murtha a Traitor

In her typical sewer rat manner, Rightwing Republican Ann Coulter has characterized John Murtha, a decorated Vietnam veteran, as a traitor and "gutless" for daring to criticize Dear Leader's war strategy in Iraq. The key section of her obscene remarks can be found here.

Again: in any serious society Coulter would be rotting in an institution for the criminally insane. The very fact that she repeatedly is allowed to air her views on national television is a sign of how low public discourse in America has really fallen.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

John Kerry Was an Excellent Candidate

And this post demonstrates that pretty clearly. I'm sick and tired of Democrats who bash Kerry. He ran a pretty good (although not optimal) campaign. (He should have smashed the Swiftboat Liars to pieces immediately, though.) He would have been a great president, light years better than the malicious buffoon we have now. In short, let's hear it for Kerry--as strong a candidate as we could have had.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Astounding! Bush Knew 10 DAYS After 9/11 That Iraq Wasn't Involved

This article gives the details. Apparently, a Presidential Daily Briefing from 21 September 2001, the details of which are still being kept secret, indicated that Iraq had no connection to the 9/11 attacks. The very existence of this document was kept secret from the Congress.

Bush KNEW that Iraq hadn't been involved, and yet he invaded in part because he claimed that in so doing he was fighting terrorism. The Administration's paid liars hinted and implied REPEATEDLY that Saddam was implicated in the attack on America. Many Americans still believe this, due in large part to Republican lies.

An outrage, pure an simple.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Antonin Scalia is a Damned Liar

The Worst Supreme Court Justice Imaginable is now claiming that it was Al Gore's fault that the Florida election fiasco landed in the Supreme Court. The case, you'll recall, was named Bush v. Gore--in other words, Bush was the plaintiff. It was Bush's thugs that were fighting to overturn the Florida Supreme Court's recount decision. Scalia further lies when he says that the media recounts showed Bush won anyway. They showed no such thing, as many can document.

The 2000 election was a Republican coup d'etat and Scalia was a part of it. Is there any wonder that he would defend it so ardently now?

By the way, as a reminder, here, to me, is the key moment in the Florida recount: a riot staged by Republican goons to stop the Miami Board of Elections from completing its work. Check out the identities of the rioters.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Stryker Rants Against the Anti-Military Republicans: Awesome

This is an expression of pure and righteous rage by a long-time supporter of the military who's had enough. My favorite part is the opening:

All the talk about Republicans being big supporters of the military is bullshit. If there’s someone insulting a vet and calling him a coward, chances are it’s a Republican who’s never served. If there’s a choice between money for shit people really need or a sexy new weapon system built by a company that donates heavily to the Party, the company will profit.

Heh heh. Suck on that, Karl.

The Abramoff Volcano is Ready to Erupt

And its lava is going to overwhelm a lot of Republicans in Congress. The New York Times has the story. Tom DeLay is a prime target of the Justice Department's investigation. Money quote in the NYT article:

"I think this has the potential to be the biggest scandal in Congress in over a century," said Thomas E. Mann, a Congressional specialist at the Brookings Institution. "I've been around Washington for 35 years, watching Congress, and I've never seen anything approaching Abramoff for cynicism and chutzpah in proposing quid pro quos to members of Congress."

It's time to clean out the Republican crooks, liars, thugs, and con artists. This is all a prelude to the Big Clean Out that's going to take place on Tuesday, 7 November 2006, when the American people elect a Democratic Congress.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Please--I Implore You--Watch This Video

You'll find it here. It's a statement from and about John Murtha. Just trust me on this. Go watch.


The Immediate Objective Must Be the Political Destruction of Karl Rove

By all accounts, the despicable, vicious campaign of lies and smears that has been launched against Representative John Murtha is being directly coordinated by Bush's chief political deputy Karl Rove. Rove is determined to destroy Murtha for daring to call for a U.S. withdrawal from Iraq. You see, Murtha isn't just any regular anti-war Democrat. He was in the Marines (active and reserve) for 37 years. He received the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart in Vietnam. He has been a fierce Democratic hawk, unfailing in his support for the military. A few years ago he received a special lifetime achievement award from the Marines. He voted to give Bush the authority to take military action. He has been visiting wounded servicemen at Walter Reed Hospital in Washington right from the start of the war. So when someone like Murtha speaks up against continuing our military involvement in Iraq, it has a huge impact. This is why the Republican Rightwing noise machine has gone into high gear to attack him. And Rove is coordinating the assault.

It's time to take this son of a bitch out.

Rove, first of all, is a draft dodger who avoided military service and yet loves to attack people who have served if they dare to cross him. Second, he's a piece of human garbage who learned his dirty tricks working for Nixon. Third, every campaign in which he's been involved has gotten unbelievably ugly. Rove spread lies about Bush's opponent in 1994, Ann Richards, deliberately spreading rumors in gay-hostile Texas that Richards was a lesbian. He smeared a Democratic candidate for the Alabama Supreme Court by spreading rumors that the Democrat was a child molester. He personally coordinated the horrible attacks on John McCain in the 2000 South Carolina primary campaign. (I lost all respect for McCain--almost--when he meekly supported Bush in 2004.) Rove personally coordinated the Swift Boat bullshit against John Kerry, with Bush's personal approval. And now Rove is attempting to destroy yet another veteran. (What is it with these chickenhawk bastards like Rove and Limbaugh? Anger and guilt because they know what gutless cowards they actually are?) But whatever the case, one thing is clear: ROVE MUST BE POLITICALLY DESTROYED FOR ALL TIME. Democrats must attack him by name, relentlessly, angrily, ruthlessly, incessantly. There must be no let up on the assault against Rove. Every political weapon must be used against him. Democrats have a reputation of not being willing to fight back as hard and as dirty as the Republicans do. Well, this Democrat, J. Miller the Rampant, isn't a Democrat who just takes it. I FIGHT BACK. My blog may be tiny, but with whatever voice I have, I will call for Rove's destruction. Rove is the brains, heart, and soul of the utterly corrupt and morally bankrupt Republican Party. Tear him down, and you decapitate the Republican Right. Use any dirt you have on him. Attack him by name on the Sunday talk shows. Start the rumor mill going against him. Shed light on this lousy little cockroach every chance you get. And above all, push for Patrick Fitzgerald to stay focused on Rove and his traitorous actions in the Plame Affair.

This is it, Democrats. A good man is under attack by Rove. What do you intend to do about it? I'll be waiting.

And I'll be fighting back.

UPDATE: Check this column out from the LA Times.

The Bush Collapse Deepens

Survey USA's 50 state poll of Bush's approval is in for November, and it's ugly for the Boy King. Overall, he's down by a stunning 37-60. He has net approval in only four states. He's tied in two others. He has net disapproval in 44 states. (I am proud and happy to note that Illinois is rejecting him 31-67.) Bush is massively unpopular. Democrats, go for the throat--don't let him up. Destroy his presidency utterly. The first step is taking back Congress in 2006. Don't hesitate, and don't hold back. Tie Bush around the throats of the drowning Republicans next year--and watch them sink as if an anvil had been thrown on them.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Gene Lyons: Bush's Revisionist "History"

Lyons does an excellent job of summing up Bush's most recent lies on the history of how the United States went to war in Iraq. Point by point, he tells us--again--what really happened. And he reminds us that 57% of the American people, in a recent survey, said they believed Bush deliberately misled the nation into war. Go and give it a read. I'll wait here.

Smearing Representative Murtha

The White House and the Republican slime who run the House of Representatives have already swung into action to attack the reputation of deeply respected Democratic Representative John Murtha. Murtha, a decorated Vietnam vet, had the nerve to actually call for the withdrawal of American troops from Iraq! Can you imagine? Attacking our country that way by criticizing Dear Leader's infallible policies? The nerve of this guy! Here's an account of the affair written with plenty of colorful language.

By the way, check out these disgusting, filthy remarks by Republican scum Jean Schmidt during the debate on a phony resolution about the war the Rethugs are pushing. Remember, she's talking about a guy who was in the Marines for over 30 years:

The fiery, emotional debate climaxed when Rep. Jean Schmidt, R-Ohio, the most junior member of the House, told of a phone call she received from a Marine colonel.

``He asked me to send Congress a message - stay the course. He also asked me to send Congressman Murtha a message - that cowards cut and run, Marines never do,'' Schmidt said.

Garbage. Just outright human garbage, that's what Jean Schmidt is.

Harris: Bush Approval Rating 34%-65% NEGATIVE

And this is only a little more than a year after his "re-election". Check out the details here.

The strategy is clear: Wrap Dubya around the throat of every Republican candidate for office in 2006--and watch the GOP sink.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Cheney's Despicable, Pathetic Lies: On the Record

The sheer damned nerve of the Torture King is truly something to behold. He now is attacking Democrats for daring to call him on his constant, never-ending falsehoods on Iraq. Want to see the biggest ones (and a link to all the Administration's lies on the war)? Then go here and check it out.

The Return of the Poll Tax

Ah, those wonderful conservative Republicans. Such nostalgia for the past. I guess that's why they're going to start charging poor voters in Georgia (those without a car)a fee to vote. For real. Of course, the vast majority of those hit by the fee will be indigent black Democrats. The objective is plain: suppress the black (and Democratic) vote.

The Georgia Republican Party: Keeping the Spirit of the Klan Alive in the 21st Century.

(See also this larger story in Kos that I found originally)

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Uh-Oh. Bush is Turning Into Captain Queeg!

This item, with information taken from Rev. Moon's weirdly right-wing Washington Times, gives us a portrait of Dubya as an increasingly isolated, brooding, paranoid. If this is true, I'm more than a little bit apprehensive. I have to ask: is this guy emotionally stable?

The NYT Smacks Bush's Intelligence Lies Down Hard

This editorial in today's New York Times gives the lie once again to Bush's preposterous claims that "everyone" had the same intelligence in the period leading up to the war. Moreover, not everyone was reaching the same conclusions. Key section:

The administration had little company in saying that Iraq was actively trying to build a nuclear weapon. The evidence for this claim was a dubious report about an attempt in 1999 to buy uranium from Niger, later shown to be false, and the infamous aluminum tubes story. That was dismissed at the time by analysts with real expertise.

The Bush administration was also alone in making the absurd claim that Iraq was in league with Al Qaeda and somehow connected to the 9/11 terrorist attacks. That was based on two false tales. One was the supposed trip to Prague by Mohamed Atta, a report that was disputed before the war and came from an unreliable drunk. The other was that Iraq trained Qaeda members in the use of chemical and biological weapons. Before the war, the Defense Intelligence Agency concluded that this was a deliberate fabrication by an informer

Bush's enemies (like me) are not going to let him get away with twisting and distorting the record. We're going to nail his lies--relentlessly.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Another New Low for Bush

In the polls, not just his conduct as a human being. And please, please, please look at this astounding statement:

Fewer than one in 10 adults say they would prefer a congressional candidate who is a Republican and who agrees with Bush on most major issues, according to a USA TODAY/CNN/Gallup Poll taken Friday through Sunday. Even among Republicans, seven of 10 are most likely to back a candidate who has at least some disagreements with the president.

Did you see that?? Less than 10% say they want a Congressional candidate who agees with Bush on most major issues?? This is borderline cataclysmic. This is the stuff of potential Democratic landslides.

If the Democrats play their cards right.

If the Democrats don't let the Naked Emperor off the hook.

If the Democrats guts it up and act like Democrats.

P.S. And this must be making the radical rightwingers just writhe in agony:

A 53% majority say they trust what Bush says less than they trusted previous presidents while they were in office. In a specific comparison with President Clinton, those surveyed by 48%-36% say they trust Bush less.


James Fallows Cuts Through Bush's BS on Iraq

James Fallows, who has forgotten more about Iraq than The Boy Emperor, Cheney, and Rumsfeld have ever learned about it (combined), tears through Bush's pathetic tissue of lies on the issue of whether Democrats are equally culpable for the Iraq disaster. The key section of Fallows' piece:

Everybody was not, in fact, working from the same misleading information. The administration's line about WMD these days is: OK, we might have been wrong -- but everybody was wrong, and everybody came to the same conclusion we did. The foreigners came to that conclusion through their intelligence services, and the Democrats (especially that weaselly Kerry and ambitious Hillary) did it when they voted for the war resolution. But at the time, Administration officials were most emphatically NOT saying "hey, we're all operating in the dark here." The implied message of every briefing for reporters, every speech to the public, and every background session with legislators, was: If you knew what we knew, then you'd be as alarmed as we are. That was the message of Dick Cheney's statement that "there can be no doubt" that Iraq "now" had weapons of mass destruction, of Condi Rice's warning about the mushroom cloud, and of Colin Powell's presentation to the UN. The argument over Iraq's capabilities was by definition one sided, because the Administration's presumed insider knowledge trumped what anyone else could say. To pretend this was just a big widely-shared confusion is dishonest and wrong.

Damned right. Now that Bush and his fellow thugs have been shown to have been disastrously wrong, they're trying to say that they didn't pull the "inside info" trick on everyone. That's perhaps the most brazen lie of all.

And they're not going to get by with it.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

They Don't Know; They Don't Care That They Don't Know

A troubling article on the state of recent college graduates and the attitudes many (not all) have toward broadening their education. Read this and see why I've become so emotionally tired after more than 30 years as a teacher.

Josh Marshall: The Real Issue in the Run-Up to the War

The intelligence community was embroiled in the issue of whether Saddam had been involved in the 9/11 attacks. It was the Bush Administration that kept pushing this lie over and over again. Key graph:

[Among Bush's lies and distortions]

Longstanding effort to convince the American people that Iraq maintained ties to al Qaida and may have played a role in 9/11. This was always just a plain old lie. (And if you want to see where the real fights with the Intelligence Community came up, it was always on the terror tie angle and much less on WMD.) The president and his chief advisors tried to leverage Americans' horror over 9/11 to gain support for attacking Iraq. Simple: lying to the public the president was sworn to protect.

Remember, a substantial percentage of the American people are still convinced that Saddam orchestrated the 9/11 attacks. That misconception is OVERWHELMINGLY because Bush and his lying thugs kept spreading this lie. After the evidence became too overwhelming to ignore, Bush was forced (in a low-key statement not given the attention it deserved) to admit that he had been wrong. But the damage had been done.

Read Marshall's whole post. It's an excellent summary of the disgusting tactics Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and all the rest of this contemptible administration used to drag us into an unneccesary war.

John Edwards Responds to Bush

An excellent answer to Bush's lying, dishonest Veterans Day statement. Key section:

Almost three years ago we went into Iraq to remove what we were told -- and what many of us believed and argued -- was a threat to America. But in fact we now know that Iraq did not have weapons of mass destruction when our forces invaded Iraq in 2003. The intelligence was deeply flawed and, in some cases, manipulated to fit a political agenda.

The argument for going to war with Iraq was based on intelligence that we now know was inaccurate. The information the American people were hearing from the president -- and that I was being given by our intelligence community -- wasn't the whole story. Had I known this at the time, I never would have voted for this war.

George Bush won't accept responsibility for his mistakes. Along with Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, he has made horrible mistakes at almost every step: failed diplomacy; not going in with enough troops; not giving our forces the equipment they need; not having a plan for peace.

Because of these failures, Iraq is a mess and has become a far greater threat than it ever was. It is now a haven for terrorists, and our presence there is draining the goodwill our country once enjoyed, diminishing our global standing. It has made fighting the global war against terrorist organizations more difficult, not less.

Well said! Damned right! Sigh. If only John Edwards was Vice President right now, America could hold its head high. Instead, we have a vicious criminal in that office, a man so morally bankrupt that I sincerely believe him to be the most genuinely evil leader in our country's history.

Newsweek: Bush Going Down the Drain

Dubya hits a new low in the latest Newsweek survey with a pathetic 36% approval rate. To me, an even more encouraging number was this: Democrats hold a 17 point lead in the generic House ballot.

Democrats, nationalize the 2006 election. Make it a referendum on Bush, Cheney, and DeLay--and then watch us win BIG.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

San Francisco Talks Back to Idiot Loser Bill O'Reilly

Right-wing borderline sociopath Bill O'Reilly recently, on air, practically invited Al Qaeda to attack San Francisco. The reason? San Francisco voters passed a resolution objecting to military recruiting in the city's high schools. (I don't agree with the voters' stance either, but I'm not going to hope for an attack on what is my favorite big city in the world.) San Franciscans are outraged, naturally, and they're talking back to O' Reilly the Fool.

Congress DID NOT See the Same Intelligence Info As Bush

The Bush Administration is attempting to push the despicable line that the Congressional Democrats that supported the war in Iraq were seeing exactly the same intelligence data as Bush and Cheney. This lie is addressed in this morning's Washington Post. Not only does the Congress NOT see the most sensitive intel, it must rely on the White House to hand over any data considered relevant to the issue at hand. Further, the committee that investigated intel data manipulation did not say that Bush and Cheney gave the Congress the whole story. In short, both of Bush's major contentions in yesterday's attacks on the war's critics are falsehoods.


  • Iraq did NOT have weapons of mass destruction.
  • The intelligence data on this issue were manipulated by the Bush-Cheney crowd.
  • The UN inspectors who said there were no weapons were right.
  • Hans Blix was right.
  • Scott Ritter was right.
  • Bush, Cheney, and the NeoCon boys were looking for an excuse to invade Iraq from day one of the Administration in January 2001.
  • The 9/11 attacks gave the Administration a perfect excuse to attack Iraq, on no evidence of Iraqi involvement in the attacks whatsoever.
  • The planning for the aftermath of the Iraqi war was atrocious to the point of criminal negligence.

It is this set of issues, above all, which is hammering Bush's approval ratings down. Our country's involvement in Iraq is HIS FAULT. The lousy planning for the war is HIS FAULT. The mess we're involved in is HIS FAULT. His lies, his incompetence, his deception, and his moral bankruptcy have all led us here.

In an ideal world, the Democrats would capture big enough majorities in both houses of Congress in 2006 to throw him and Torture Master Cheney out the door.

Let's see if we can live our dream.

Friday, November 11, 2005

The Economist Rips Bush and Cheney a New One on Torture

This powerful editorial should be required reading for the American people. Its key passage deserves emphasis:

If the pragmatic gains in terms of information yielded are dubious, the loss to America in terms of public opinion are clear and horrifically large. Abu Ghraib was a gift to the insurgency in Iraq; Guantánamo Bay and its dubious military commissions, now being examined by the Supreme Court, have acted as recruiting sergeants for al-Qaeda around the world. In the cold war, America championed the Helsinki human-rights accords. This time, the world's most magnificent democracy is struggling against vile terrorists who thought nothing of slaughtering thousands of innocent civilians—and yet the administration has somehow contrived to turn America's own human-rights record into a subject of legitimate debate.

My God, how did America come to be in the control of such vile people, people who don't have the first inkling of what our country stands for? Thanks to The Economist for saying it straight.

Little Ricky: Fraud, Liar, and Hypocrite

Soon to be ex-Senator Rick Santorum has been peddling the usual right-wing nonsense that medical care in America is expensive because of unnecsssary malpractice suits. Maybe he can explain this.

Oh, and by the way. The most current Rasmussen poll has Santorum 20 points behind Pennsylvania's next U.S. Senator, Bob Casey, Jr. Santorum's not just going to lose--he's going to be trounced and humiliated. Heh heh heh.

Haw! I LOVE It!

Taken from a thread on Huffington today discussing Dubya'sa 121st recital of the same lying, weasel-like speech defending his Iraq policy:

It's unrealistic to expect Bush to say anything different, anything that is a response to reality. He's a puppet, a wind-up doll -- he can't say anything he's not programmed for. We might as well have "Tickle Me Elmo" as president.

God Bless America's Veterans

You have given of yourselves on our behalf, and I will honor you for it all the days of my life--not just today. From the bottom of my heart, thank you, now and forever.

Republican Party to Veterans: Drop Dead

The Republicans continue their war on America's veterans with this outrageous action. Veterans groups will not be allowed to testify at open Congressional hearings for the first time in the 55 years since such hearings have been held. Bush's House cronies are behind this. They probably don't want to hear members of the VFW rip Bush a new one on his vicious, disastrous policies. Remember, this is the Administration that has attempted repeatedly to cut veterans benefits. From Phil Singer:

Republicans Voted Against Veterans' Health Care FIVE TIMES This Year, Despite Warnings of Budget Shortfall. Before the Department of Veterans Affairs announced a $1 billion budget shortfall earlier this year, Senate Republicans voted twice against $1.98 billion for veterans' health care, while also opposing a proposal to increase veterans' health care funding by $2.8 billion. And last month, Republicans said "no" to keeping veterans' health care funding in line with inflation and population growth. These votes all came despite at least five warnings from Sen. Patty Murray that the proposed federal funding for veterans' programs would not be enough to cover costs. [Vote #89, 4/12/05; Vote #90, 4/12/05; Vote #55, 3/16/05; Vote #251, 10/5/05; CQ Today, 10/5/05; U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs Press Release, 6/23/05; Office of Sen. Patty Murray; Tacoma News Tribune, 6/29/05]

The Republicans are also attempting to cripple the Veterans Administration. I posted this last month; it's time to post it again.

And need I remind you about the lies that put our service people in the line of fire in Iraq? The lack of adequate Humvee and body armor for them once they got there? The rotten planning for post-war Iraq that has put our service people in grave danger every day? The disgusting lies about a genuine American hero, Pat Tillman, whose tragic death was exploited by right-wing Republicans for political gain?

Veterans, all you've gotten from Bush and his lying thugs is bullshit. He doesn't give a damn about you except as props for his photo-ops and Republican campaign commercials. It's time to stand with the people who have ALWAYS stood with you, have NEVER let you down, and WILL NEVER let you down: The Democratic Party.

Cheney and the Twisting of Intelligence Data

Eric Alterman reminds us here of the catastrophic role that Torture Master Dick Cheney has had in manipulating intelligence info to suit his preconceived notions. We are reminded that Cheney set up what has been called a parallel government to impose his views on the Iraq situation on the intelligence community. Go read this and see what you think.

Is there any way in which this disgusting bastard Cheney has not harmed our country?

Judith Miller: Bush's Ally in Deceiving Us Into Iraq

Pathetic, lying Bush Administration whore Judith Miller, late of the New York Times, is on a speaking tour to try to clear her name. Miller is the "journalist" who, you may recall, posted stories asserting that claims of Iraqi WMDs were supported by solid evidence. Her stories, appearing in the nation's most prestigious newspaper, helped bolster public support for the disastrous Iraq War. Miller was nothing but a rectum for Bush Administration lies and misinformation. She has a part of the blood of 2,000 servicemen on her head. She's trying to blame others for her career difficulties. That's garbage. They are all entirely her fault. She deserves nothing but utter condemnation.

For more, check here.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

The Truth About the American Economy

Courtesy of my favorite Democratic economics expert Bonddad, who completely dismantles the fraudulent arguments of a National Review partisan. He demolishes the false, rosy assumptions of the conservatives and again comes down hard on the main point: our children and our grandchildren will be paying for Bush's reckless irresponsibility for decades. Go get 'em, Bonddad!

The Vatican and Darwin: A Rebuke to the Creationists

The Catholic Church continues to maintain its very sane and level-headed view of evolutionary reality. It rejects the ludicrous Biblical literalism of so many American fundamentalists, and is scornful of attempts to use the Bible to undermine scientific principles. The key thoughts from the article

At [a] press conference [Cardinal Paul Poupard] was discussing the issue of evolution, which is the critical dividing line between science and religion. Charles Darwin’s On the Origin of Species shook religious belief when it was first published in 1859 in a way that Isaac Newton’s equally important Principia had not shaken the faith of 1687.

In The Times Martin Penner reported the cardinal’s argument. He had said that the description in Genesis of the Creation was “perfectly compatible” with Darwin’s theory of evolution, if the Bible were read properly. “Fundamentalists want to give a scientific meaning to words that had no scientific aim.”

He argued that the real message of Genesis was that the Universe did not make itself, and had a creator. “Science and theology act in different fields, each in its own.” In Rome, the immediate reaction was that this was a Vatican rejection of the fundamentalist American doctrine of “intelligent design”. No doubt the Vatican does want to separate itself from American creationists, but the significance surely goes further than that. This is not another Galileo case; the teachings of the Church have never imposed a literal interpretation of the language of the Bible; that was a Protestant mistake. Nor did the Church condemn the theory of evolution, though it did and does reject neo-Darwinism when that is made specifically atheist.

Well said. More intelligent and thoughtful Christians need to add their voices in the increasingly vocal chorus that is denouncing the absurd creationist fairy tales of the religious right.

Libby's Weird, Perverse Novel to Be Reissued

Lewis Libby, possible future inhabitant of the Federal penal system and former top aide to Vice President "Dick" Cheney, published a novel called The Apprentice in 1996. Due to Libby's recent notoriety, it's being offered for sale again. I haven't read it, but it involves murder and prostitution in Japan. In one of the novel's scenes a young female being held in a cage is, at her captor's instigation, raped by a bear, thereby combining both pedophilia and bestiality. Now who the hell would dream up something like that, much less publish it in a novel?

What kind of people are we dealing with here?

The Depths to Which Bush's Image Has Fallen

Emerging Democratic Majority has an excellent post summarizing how completely Bush has collapsed in the eyes of the American people. Only Richard Nixon, bedeviled by Watergate, has had lower ratings at this point in his term. Clinton, who Republican rightwingers considered to be a combination of the AntiChrist and Stalin, was overwhelmingly more popular than Dubya. Bush has even lost public support on those twin pillars which have allowed him to bully everyone else around: leadership and effectiveness against terrorism. In short, his Administration is politically bankrupt. I intend to shout this fact as much as humanly possible.

Historians will long ponder how the least qualified presidential candidate since William Jennings Bryan in 1896 was "elected" president in 2000. They will study the breathtaking venality and incompetence of Bush and his cronies at some length. And they may just see 2005 as the year the American people began to wake up from their dream world--and saved themselves.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Pseudo-Conservative Bush and the Texas Rip-Off

Read how Bush, when part owner of the Texas Rangers baseball franchise, used public money and eminent domain to enrich himself and his cronies, while leaving Arlington, Texas's taxpayers with his legal bills.

And yes, the story was known before the 2000 election. And yes, it makes what the Clintons were accused of in Whitewater look penny-ante. And no, the mainstream press did not make an issue of it.

He's simply a lying, crooked little bastard.

Congratulations, Democrats!

Solid victories for Governor-Elect Jon Corzine (NJ) and Governor-Elect Tim Kaine (VA) . The Virginia victory was especially sweet, inasmuch as the local Republicans brought in W at the last minute to campaign for the GOP candidate. Heh heh heh.

Arnold Schwarzenegger's propositions all went down to defeat in Kaleefornia. The Gropenator is through. If he doesn't decide against running for re-election in 2006, he'll be voted out of office, and I have a hunch he knows that. (Robert Scheer weighs in here.)

Bush's popularity ratings are at record lows and going down. The Republicans are nervous and uncertain. Now is not the time to spend congratulating ourselves on yesterday's victories. Now is the time to start getting ready for the big show on Tuesday, 7 November 2006. The goals must be crystal clear in our minds:

Win control of the U.S. House of Representatives. There is no reason why the Democrats cannot gain 35-40 new seats.

Win control 0f the U.S. Senate. Republican seats are vulnerable in Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Missouri, Montana, Arizona, Tennessee, and maybe more.

Win control of the Governor's mansions in New York, Florida, California, and any number of other states.

Win control of state legislatures across the country.

Win county offices in every state in the country.

There is no reason why we can't. There is every reason why we must.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Cheney Isn't Just Evil--He's an Incompetent

Check out these delightful assessments of the worst Vice President in American history, first from Digby and then from James Carroll. Both are excellent.

Where in hell did Cheney get his reputation for competence? He's an out and out disaster, as incompetent of a fool as has ever presumed to govern. Add to this his total lack of any moral compass whatsoever and his hideous, vicious personality, and you get a sense of what this blood-stained son of a bitch really is.

UPDATE: Dan Drezner piles on, too.

Get Everyone You Know Out to Vote Today...

if they live in Virginia or New Jersey (Governor's races), California or Ohio (referendums), New York City (mayor's race), or for any other election in their area. Get yourself out, too.

The message is simple: Vote Democratic from top to bottom. Send a message. Today.

Astounding! Liberal Church in California Threatened by Bush's IRS

It seems that a church rector had the nerve to criticize the Iraq war in a sermon two days before the 2004 election. The IRS is therefore threatening to revoke the church's tax exempt status.

Remember, it's OK for the "Christian Coalition's" churches to push for Republicans.

It's OK for right-wing churches to hand out pro-Republican "voting guides" in church prior to elections.

It's OK for Robertson, Reed, and Falwell to be intrinsic parts of the Republican Party.

But it's not all right for one church's leadership to criticize Dear Leader.

This is an outrage.

The Bush Administration on Iraq: Lie After Lie After Lie

Thanks to Harper's for reprinting this series of statements. These pronouncements, all from Bush administration members, constitute their version of reality about Iraq and why we invaded. Every single one of them is pure, unadulterated BS. I know that, of course. It's just interesting to see all this in one place, that's all.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Democrats--the People Are Moving Toward You

So says the ABC poll, which gives the Democrats a huge lead in the generic Congressional ballot and an astonishing lead in nine out of ten "issue" categories. In the tenth, fighting terrorism, the Democrats run even. In other words, the Republicans hold the advantage on nothing whatsoever.

How to exploit this advantage? This passage lays out the challenge--and the opportunity:

With incumbent re-election rates usually over 90 percent, it takes a nationalized congressional election — with a differentiated, unifying theme and anti-incumbent sentiment — to create real change. The template is the Republicans' realigning election of 1994, when they gained 52 House seats and the control they still enjoy today.

Yes! Nationalize the 2006 Elections. Make them a referendum on Bush, Cheney, and the entire rat-bastard Republican Party. Find a unified message and pound it relentlessly.

Democrats, grow a spine. Fight Alito. Fight the new round of tax cuts for the wealthy. Continue to demand answers about what went wrong in Iraq. Flush Cheney out of hiding and make him answer questions in public. The majority of Americans are waiting for you to take a stand--DO IT!

Torture Man Cheney and the (Mis)Uses of Intelligence

Kevin Drum beats all over Dick "The Torturer" Cheney in this post from Washington Monthly. Drum points out (as many others have) that not only is torture morally wrong, it isn't even a good way of getting information. The recent exposure of fraudulent information given to the United States by an al-Qaeda informant who was subjected to "physical coercion" is case in point on this. But for me, the money quote was this:

If conservatives dislike Dick Durbin's comparison of American practices to those of Hitler and Stalin, they should make clear to Dick Cheney that America doesn't condone the practices of Hitler and Stalin. Because apparently, the vice president of the United States does condone them. Vigorously. It's enough to make any decent human being puke.

Well said, Kevin. Well said.

Little Ricky In Hot Water--and He Knows It

Soon to be ex-Senator Rick Santorum is between the proverbial rock and a hard place, as the GOP's despicable fiscal choices are catching up with him. While the Republicans in the Senate are pushing $35 billion in spending reductions (much of which would hurt people who genuinely need help), they're also pushing $70 billion in new tax cuts designed to help the wealthy campaign contributors to the Republican Party. Any way he turns on this issue, Pennsylvania voters are going to smack him. Couldn't happen to a nicer guy.

Casey for Senate '06

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Chalabi Back in Favor With Bush Gang

Ahmed Chalabi, noted liar and author of fiction regarding Saddam's mysterious WMDs, is back in the good graces of the Bush Administration. Chalabi, whose false information helped provide Bush, Cheney, and Rumsfeld with a rationale for leading the country into war, has also been tied to people in Iran's violently anti-American government. Apparently, however, he's still considered a good friend to those in power in Washington.

Alito: Sock Puppet of Big Business

And the Big Money Boys are going all out to push his nomination. Not only is Alito a reliable vote for corporate interests, however egregiously they have violated the law, he is, as noted elsewhere on this blog, a bitter enemy of workers rights. He in fact, opposes the right of workers to even be heard or to voice their grievances. His nomination by Bush is nothing less than a declaration of war against working Americans and those who care about the environment and corporate accountability. And to this I say,


The Republicans: Trying to Lie Their Way Out of the Plame Affair

Typically, I might add. AlterNet nails their nine most prominent lies here.

Again: these right-wing bastards thought it was worth turning the United States upside down for years at a time because Bill Clinton lied about sex in a civil suit, but they'll lie and distort and smear tirelessly when their own side lies the United States into a disastrous war and commits treason in order to destroy one of that war's critics. The Plame Affair reveals them in all their despicable reality.

Senate Cuts $35 Billion in Social Spending, Grants $70 Billion Tax Cut to the Rich

The news is in this article in the Washington Post, although you'd have to read pretty far down to get the tax cut news. (The headline of the article is utterly deceptive.) Key graph:

With so many controversial provisions, the House measure is forcing Republican leaders to scramble for support in what could be the most difficult vote of the year. Some Republican moderates are balking at cuts to anti-poverty programs, especially in light of a $70 billion tax cut that could come to a vote soon after the budget bill, more than wiping out the first bill's deficit reduction.

This is the tenth paragraph of the article, by the way.

The Republicans: screw the poor, feed the rich, drive the nation into bankruptcy.

And you wonder why I despise them?

Friday, November 04, 2005

Washington Post Poll: 58% Say Bush is Dishonest

The awakening continues. Also, check out the shocking 33%-66% DISAPPROVAL of Bush among independents.

If only this had all happened in October of 2004...

Cheney Fighting Tooth and Nail for Torture

Read about how the House Republicans are trying to spare Dickie boy an embarrassing defeat as he continues to push for the right of U.S. forces to torture our enemies. Don't buy it? Then check this out.

Cheney is a hideous, loathsome, repulsive excuse for a human being. He wants us to morally be no better than our enemies.


Cheney's Approval in CBS Poll at Laughable, Pathetic 19%

Read 'em and weep, Dickie boy.

By the way, when is the press going to get aggressive about getting some damned answers out of this son of a bitch? Cheney is the most secretive Vice President in history. His arrogance, his cruelty, his dishonesty, and his contempt for the American people are unparalleled. He despises us. I guess we feel the same way about him.

The Republican Leadership is Playing Evangelical Christians for Fools

Check out this devastating post by JohnnyCougar in DKos today. It contains, among other things, a quote from one of TOM DE LAY'S former political strategists about how the Republicans really play the game. The issue at hand here is protecting right-wing Republicans from legal trouble surrounding the skimming of money from Indian casinos.

"The wackos get their information through the Christian right, Christian radio, mail, the internet and telephone trees," Scanlon wrote in the memo, which was read into the public record at a hearing of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee. "Simply put, we want to bring out the wackos to vote against something and make sure the rest of the public lets the whole thing slip past them."

The Wackos. Did you see that everyone? Did the Republican Right's soldiers see that? The Republican leadership SNEERS AT THEM and thinks they're a bunch of suckers. The Republican leaders use the Religious Right's members as tools--to be discarded, presumably, when no longer needed.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Bush Continues to Bottom Out: 35%-57% DISAPPROVE in New CBS Poll

And check out the right track/wrong track ratings. SIXTY-NINE PER CENT OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE SAY WE'RE ON THE WRONG TRACK.

Democrats, get a spine. (The closed session Senate thing yesterday was a good sign.) This lying, incompetent little weasel is WEAK AND VULNERABLE. Pound him relentlessly. Pound Cheney just as hard. Hit every weakness these sons of bitches have. Pound the whole damned corrupt, rotten, lying Republican Party. The American people are ready to stand with you, Democrats--GIVE THEM A REASON TO.

American People Unenthusiastic About Alito

And by 50%-40%, they would back a Democratic filibuster against him.

Face it--the only people really hot for this guy are the firebreathers on the Radical Right, who apparently believe themselves to be accountable to no one. Bush, being the coward that he is, caved in on the Miers nomination at the behest of these lunatics (so much for every nominee getting an "up or down" vote). Now he and the American Taliban are trying to foist a judge on us who is every bit as much of a far right authoritarian as Scalia. And to that I say,


Alito: Enemy of Workers Rights

One every single issue Judge Samuel Alito has ruled against the interests of working Americans. He has consistently sided with Big Business, however unjust its practices are. In fact, many are saying Alito's atrocious record on workers' rights should be the centerpiece of the effort to defeat him. Example:

Alito on the Supreme Court will be a consistent vote against workers rights. That is a clear message if you look over his history on the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. What is striking about Alito is that he is so hostile even to the basic right of workers to have a day in court, much less interpreting the law in their favor.

[In a number of cases]Alito dissented from a majority decision of the Third Circuit, cases where his views were more conservative than the overall panel. They cover minimum wage, discrimination, retirement, public employee rights, and interpretations of union labor law.

There are other cases as well, where Alito wrote anti-worker majority decisions, as in his opinion to exempt public employers from the Family and Medical Leave Act (a principle that the Supreme Court subsequently overruled, putting him to the right of William Rehnquist)
[Emphasis added.]

To the right of Rehnquist? To that I say


Disturbing: Bush Administration Running Secret Prisons for Terror Suspects

And it's using old Soviet facilities in one case. A lot of people are bothered by this, judging by the blogs, and I don't blame them. Along with the enthusiastic support for torture shown by Bush, Rumsfeld, and Cheney, this is another troubling part of the picture of how this Administration operates.