Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Going Out of Town for a Few Days

I'll start posting again Monday of next week. Check our Blogroll sites for lots of good stuff.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

WTF?? New Video Game Urges "Christian" Kids to Kill Unbelievers

You think I'm joking? I wish I were. Check this out.

These are some truly sick bastards. Every so often, the mask falls off the face of the lunatic Religious Right and you see it in all its hideous, ghastly clarity. Sane Christians need to denounce this garbage.

Bush to Veterans: Drop Dead (Again)

There is so much dishonesty and hypocrisy in the Bush White House that it's hard to get outraged by all of it, but one thing still pisses me off mightily. That's the argument that Bush is "pro-military". Bullshit. This editorial nails that lie decisively:
Today, many of President Bush's strongest supporters call the VA a welfare system. His critics claim he is working to dismantle the VA, to ultimately privatize its services.

Bush, who sends soldiers to risk their lives every day in Iraq, strongly supports rescinding the lifetime healthcare benefits promised to WWII and Korean veterans. His proposed budgets, despite dollar amount increases, don't factor in inflation or the increasing numbers of veterans needing healthcare, and thus have repeatedly failed to fully fund benefits to the men and women who have served our country.

Consequently, VA hospitals and clinics have closed, many veterans' healthcare programs have been cut back or eliminated, entire groups of vets have been denied eligibility for service, and those that are eligible may wait months and even years for appointments and necessary surgeries at the remaining VA facilities.

But the president lectures us about the importance of supporting our troops.
Bush is the ultimate poseur. He is a fraud who let American taxpayers train him to fly and then refused service in Vietnam. He walked away from his National Guard commitment early. He played dressup in that disgusting, revolting display on an aircraft carrier in May 2003. He attacks genuine war heroes in the most vicious, dishonorable ways possible. And he pretends to be a friend of veterans. But in reality Bush thinks that veterans are only welfare deadbeats to be screwed just like anybody else who doesn't have a lot of money. He hides behind the PR facade of support for our troops while flipping them off behind their backs.
Bush: a national disgrace and a complete, utter coward.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Just a Reminder of Who Has and Who Has Not Served Our Country

Memorial Day weekend is certainly a time for reflection, prayer, and gratitude toward those who have served our nation's armed forces. It's also a time to remind ourselves about a fundamental truth: most of the members of our conservative political class talk a good game, but when it comes to crunch time, they avoid putting themselves in harm's way. This wonderful list of those who did and did not serve makes this point clearly. Among the loud-mouthed "patriotic" rightwingers who avoided or refused military service (or who served in a strictly non-combat capacity) are the following:
Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert - avoided the draft, did not serve.
Former House Majority Leader Dick Armey - avoided the draft,
did not serve.
House Majority Leader
Tom Delay - avoided the draft, did not serve (1). "So many minority youths had volunteered ... that there was literally no room for patriotic folks like himself."
House Majority Whip Roy Blunt -
did not serve
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist - did not serve. (An impressive medical
resume, but not such a friend to cats in Boston.)
Majority Whip Mitch McConnell, R-KY -
did not serve (1)
Rick Santorum, R-PA, third ranking Republican in the Senate -
did not serve. (1)
Former Senate Majority Leader
Trent Lott - avoided the draft, did not serve.
Secretary of Defense Don Rumsfeld -
served in the U.S. Navy (1954-57) as an aviator and flight instructor. (1) Served as President Reagan's Special Envoy to the Middle East and met with Saddam Hussein twice in 1983 and 1984.
GW Bush - decided that a six-year Nat'l Guard commitment really means
four years. Still says that he's "been to war." Huh?
VP Cheney - several deferments (
1, 2), the last by marriage (in his own words, "had other priorities than military service") (1)
Former Att'y Gen. John Ashcroft - did not serve (
1, 2); received seven deferment to teach business ed at SW Missouri State And They Call Him General -->
Jeb Bush, Florida Governor -
did not serve. (1)
Karl Rove - avoided the draft, did not serve (
1), too busy being a Republican.
George Will, did not serve
Chris Matthews, Mediawhore, did not serve.
Bill O'Reilly, did not serve
Paul Gigot, did not serve.
Bill Bennett, Did not serve
Pat Buchanan, did not serve
Rush Limbaugh, did not serve (4-F with a 'pilonidal cyst' [see "The Rush Limbaugh Story" by Paul D. Colford, St. Martin's Press, 1993, Chapter 2: Beating the Draft.])
Michael Savage (aka Michael Alan Weiner) - did not serve,
too busy chasing herbs and botany degrees in Hawaii and Fiji
John Wayne,
did not serve
Pat Robertson - claimed during 1986 campaign to be a "combat veteran." In reality, was a "
Liquor Officer."
Bill Kristol, did not serve
Sean Hannity, did not serve.
Kenneth Starr, did not serve
Antonin Scalia, did not serve
Clarence Thomas, did not serve
Ralph Reed, did not serve
Michael Medved, did not serve
Charlie Daniels, did not serve
Ted Nugent, did not serve
Country Singer Toby Keith, did not serve. (1
Radio Host Phil Hendrie, did not serve.
Pretty impressive list, huh? Oh, and while you're checking out the page, note the long list of prominent Democrats who actually did go to war and risked their lives for our country.
Conservatives: Proving again that talk is cheap.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Some of My Favorite Bizarre, Frightening, Fascinating, or Wonderful Sites

The Huge Entity

Reality Carnival.

The High Weirdness Project.

Institute for the Advancement of Violence [Warning: Some truly strange things here.]

Crank Dot Net

Incoming Signals Archives

Slowcurl. Com

It's the End of the World As We Know It...Again

The Black Vault

Pickover's Home Page


The Anomalist.

There. That oughtta keep ya out of trouble for a while.

[NOTE: I do NOT endorse everything you will see in these sites. They are solely responsible for their OWN content. I am not liable for ANYTHING on any of these sites!]

New Evidence Proves It: The "Swift Boat Veterans" Were Damned Liars

There was no aspect of Bush and Cheney's 2004 campaign that was more despicable and dishonest than the so-called "Swift Boat Veterans for the Truth", the biggest collection of liars, conmen, and bullshit artists in American political history. Funded entirely by major Bush contributors such as corporate crook T. Boone Pickens, and coordinated WITH THE FULL KNOWLEDGE AND APPROVAL OF BUSH, the Swift Boat Liars crippled John Kerry's campaign, perhaps fatally, with their filth and slander. Now, new evidence has emerged that totally vindicates John Kerry and rips to shred the tissues of lies put out by the Swiftboat Scum. You can read about it here, courtesy of DKos.
Some of you may wonder why I hate the leadership of the Republican Party so passionately, and why I am so committed to their utter political destruction. This is part of the reason why. As was observed at the time, Bush's entire presidential campaign career represents the biggest and most vicious attack ever mounted by draft dodgers and deserters against those who served--John McCain, Al Gore, and John Kerry, each of whom has more guts and bravery in their little fingers than W has in his whole miserable fucking body. The Swiftboat Frauds have dishonored themselves forever by their lies, and have forsaken any praise they deserve for their service to our country. By helping the cause of the most disastrous president in American history, they have damaged their own country in way which may never be reparable.

Friday, May 26, 2006

The Sweetheart Relationship Between "Kenny Boy" and W

Enron scumbag/criminal/conman Kenneth Lay has just been clobbered with a stiff sentence for his role in ruining that corporation and destroying the financial security of thousands of Enron employees. Now, this article reminds us, once again, of the long and intimate relationship between Lay and his main man, the Boy King:
As a "Bush Pioneer" in the run-up to the 2000 presidential election, Lay was a key member of the Bush campaign's fund-raising inner circle. Under Lay's leadership, Enron ultimately gave Bush $550,025, making the corporation the Texan's No. 1 career patron at the time the 2000 election campaign began, according to the Center for Public Integrity. Lay personally pumped almost $400,000 into Republican hard- and soft-money funds, while Enron slipped another $1.5 million into the GOP's soft-money cesspool.

But that was just the beginning. Lay sent a letter to Enron executives urging them to contribute to Bush's campaign. More than 100 of them -- including Skilling, a major Bush giver since 1993, when he cut his first $5,000 check to GW's gubernatorial campaign -- did just that. Dozens of spouses wrote, including "homemaker" and frequent $10,000 donor Linda Lay, gave as well, making the Enron "family" a prime source of the money that gave Bush his early advantage over Republican rivals such as Arizona Senator John McCain.

All told, it is estimated that, over the years prior the company's bankruptcy, Lay, his company and its employees contributed close to $2 million to fund George W. Bush's political rise.
Yes, folks, Enron was Bush's Number One financial backer. Sort of one criminal promoting the other, don't you think? Later, Bush would deny that he and Lay were friends or that Lay received benefits from his association with Bush.
But the facts say otherwise. From Public Citizen, in regard to the California energy crisis of 2001, a "crisis" engineered solely and completely by right-wing Republican thieves:
Among the power companies found guilty of energy market manipulation, Enron exercised tremendous influence over the Bush Administration’s hands-off policy towards the California energy crisis. Enron paid the DC lobbying firm Quinn Gillespie more than half a million dollars in the first seven months of 2001 to lobby the "Executive Office of the President" on the "California electric crisis", according to the lobbying disclosure report filed with Congress on April 10, 2001. Ed Gillespie, the “Gillespie” in Quinn Gillespie and former communications director at the RNC, was a top Bush campaign advisor and ran the U.S. Department of Commerce for the first 30 days of the Bush presidency. Enron lobbied against bi-partisan efforts to re-regulate the Western electricity market through price controls.

Just as Enron was paying Gillespie $75,000 a month lobbying Congress and the White House against price controls, the Bush Administration aggressively took Enron's position. On numerous occasions, President Bush, Vice-President Cheney, their various spokespeople and cabinet officials took an aggressive stance against price controls. In fact, the Bush Administration held firm against price controls even against the advice of top Republicans in Congress
Yes, Kenny Boy has finally received his comeuppance. Now it's time to destroy the career of his best friend and chief beneficiary.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Just So We're Clear...

  • I do not think we are in the End Times. I do not think the Rapture is about to occur. I think the human race will continue to muddle through for many centuries. But I could be wrong. If so, I'll endure the tribulation. (But I don't think I'll have to.)
  • Embryonic stem cell research should continue. A zygote is not a person. A five year old kid dying of something stem cell research could cure is.
  • Gay marriage? Why not? For years people have complained that gays tomcat around recklessly. Stable monogamous relations among them should be welcomed. Gay marriage "undermines" marriage? You mean like marriage hasn't been made a farce of by Britney Spears already?
  • Birth control: a fundamental right for all sexually active people. Think of it as abortion prevention. Want less abortion? Support birth control for all.
  • The evolutionary purpose of sex in humans, as I understand it from studying anthropology, was never simply for procreation. Couples remained pair bonded because of it. It was used to express closeness, intimacy, love, simple lust (nothin' wrong with that, folks!), and a spirit of reconciliation after arguments (make-up sex). Procreation is a central function, but not the sole one. On one level, sex is a form of play among consenting adults. It should be loving and joyous. If it is, it's glorious, for whatever reason it was done.
  • I'm pretty sure no one understands God. The human attempt to understand God is akin to a bacterium trying to understand Stephen Hawking. I also don't think God endorses political candidates, and anyone who claims He does is either a liar or a psychotic.
  • Stop busting people for marijuana. Legalize it and tax it, for crying out loud.
  • If the United States survives until 2100, it will be a minor miracle, considering the way things are going.

That's about all for now.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

The Awful Danger of Debt

This article should sober anyone up about the terrible danger the supposedly "booming" U.S. economy is really in. Americans are in debt up to their eyeballs, and it's getting worse. Led by the most fiscally irresponsible government in American history, we are destroying our country by living beyond our means. The so-called "great economy" is being fueled by DEBT. Many Americans have used their houses as cash cows, riding the refinance train. (I've ridden that line myself, but usually just to lower my monthly payments.) The clock is ticking friends. The signs are everywhere.
  • A real (not stated) federal deficit of over $700,000,000,000 a year.
  • Record consumer debt.
  • Staggering future obligations.
  • The first NEGATIVE savings rate since the Great Depression.
  • A housing market that's ready to burst.

The message, my few but loyal readers is this: GET YOUR PERSONAL FINANCIAL HOUSE IN ORDER. Pay off credit card debt as fast as you can. Get into safe investments. Consider some gold just as hedge. Stash some money away every pay period. Aim toward getting out of debt. (I think I'm closing in on that possibility, if only by sheer luck, not any great brilliance on my part.) Batten down the hatches, mates--the storm is a-brewin'.

It's a Secret!

Check out this wonderful little video, courtesy of HuffPo.

Monday, May 22, 2006

The Know-Nothings Rise Again

The Republican Right is frothing about the "invasion" of America by all those awful, brown, Spanish-speaking people. Funny, though, isn't it? Resentment of illegals tends to be highest where illegals are hard to find. Gene Lyons explains:
Polls show anger about illegal aliens running strongest where Mexican Americans are fewest. Irrational factors are clearly at work. Basically, they’re the same parts of the South and Midwest where the 19 th century Know-Nothing movement and the Ku Klux Klan flourished. Then immigrant Catholics and Jews threatened national solidarity.

Some have even persuaded themselves that the so-called Reconquista movement poses a conspiratorial threat to recapture states “stolen” from Mexico. Frankly, I’d gladly say good riddance to Texas. In the meantime, maybe we should rename places like Las Vegas, San Francisco, Santa Fe and Colorado lest the Meskins get any ideas.

If you think I exaggerate, here’s how a columnist for WorldNetDaily. com recently addressed the issue: “If it took the Germans less than four years to rid themselves of 6 million Jews, many of whom spoke German and were fully integrated into German society, it couldn’t possibly take more than eight years to deport 12 million illegal aliens, many of whom don’t speak English and are not integrated into American society.”
Aren't the rightwingers lovely people?
Don't misunderstand me: illegals should be made to apply for citizenship, learn the English language, establish legal residences, and pay taxes. We have every right to defend our borders. But what I won't put up with is this damned conservative Nativism rearing its ugly head. In response to it, all Mexican illegals should become U.S. citizens, learn our language and our history, and integrate themselves fully into American life.
And then vote straight Democratic.

Listen to the GOP's Gay Fear Factor

A wonderful satirical musical number that brutally eviscerates the Republicans' "The Gays Are Coming! The Gays Are Coming!" hysteria can be found here. (The accompanying picture is priceless, too.)
The Republicans have NOTHING going for them this year. Their only strategy is to stir up vicious, reptilian hatred. This song calls them on it, loudly and clearly. Go have a listen!

General Odom: Time to Pull the Plug in Iraq

Lt. General William Odom tells Americans a bitter truth in this month's edition of Foreign Policy. It's time to withdraw from Iraq. The war, he says, has been a disaster and the hope that a liberal, pro-Western government will be established has vanished. He also succinctly expresses the damage the war has done. Excerpt:
Two facts, however painful, must be recognized, or we will remain perilously confused in Iraq. First, invading Iraq was not in the interests of the United States. It was in the interests of Iran and al Qaeda. For Iran, it avenged a grudge against Saddam for his invasion of the country in 1980. For al Qaeda, it made it easier to kill Americans. Second, the war has paralyzed the United States in the world diplomatically and strategically. Although relations with Europe show signs of marginal improvement, the trans-Atlantic alliance still may not survive the war. Only with a rapid withdrawal from Iraq will Washington regain diplomatic and military mobility. Tied down like Gulliver in the sands of Mesopotamia, we simply cannot attract the diplomatic and military cooperation necessary to win the real battle against terror. Getting out of Iraq is the precondition for any improvement.
Yes, despite the protestations of Republican die-hards, the war needs to be ended. It has been handled by Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, et al., as badly as humanly possible. America needs to cut its losses and find a way to withdraw that guarantees the greatest safety and security for our forces.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Bush and Gonzales Attack the Freedom of the Press

The head of the Department of "Justice", our Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, has invoked a World War I era law under which reporters can be prosecuted on grounds of violation of national security. In other words, if the press tries to expose Bush's rampant screw-ups in foreign policy or Bush's violations of the law, their representatives can be busted for it, presumably on whatever grounds Bush, Cheney, Rove, and Gonzales see fit. Key section:
In recent months, journalists have been called into court to testify as part of investigations into leaks, including the unauthorized disclosure of a CIA operative's name as well as the National Security Agency's warrantless eavesdropping program.

Lucy Dalglish, executive director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, said she presumed that Gonzales was referring to the 1917 Espionage Act, which she said has never been interpreted to prosecute journalists who were providing information to the public.

"I can't imagine a bigger chill on free speech and the public's right to know what it's government is up to — both hallmarks of a democracy — than prosecuting reporters," Dalglish said.

Gonzales said he would not comment specifically on whether The New York Times should be prosecuted for disclosing the NSA program last year based on classified information.
An outrage. An absolute outrage. A traitor in the White House wrecks a CIA operation and Bush's people want to attack the people who exposed the treason. The NSA violates U.S. law and Bush is going after those who revealed that violation. How much more of these cover-your-ass and lie-through-your-teeth bastards can our nation take?

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Bill O'Reilly: World Class Dumbass

Really, this mentally unbalanced son of a bitch makes it way too easy at times to ridicule him. Now he's calling for a "boycott" of Mexico and lying his ass off about the "success" of his "boycott" of France. Media Matters nails him for it.
This guy is clearly delusional and megalomaniacal. If he weren't such an obnoxious bag of right wing fertilizer, I'd feel sorry for him.
But I don't.

Exposing the Fraud of Lincoln Chafee

So-called "moderate" Republican Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island should be one of the Democrats' easiest targets this year. Rhode Island is Bush's worst state in terms of approval, and Chafee always sides with Bush on close votes in the Senate. So why is he an even bet for re-election? Buzzflash has a cogent analysis.
To me, the strategy is clear and simple: wrap Bush's massive unpopularity in Rhode Island around Chafee's throat. Emphasize Chafee's pro-Bush loyalties. And then get foursquare behind the next Democratic U.S. Senator from Rhode Island, Sheldon Whitehouse. There is simply no excuse for as Blue a state as Rhode Island being represented by a Bush enabler.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

The Anti-Gay Marriage Amendment is a Deliberate Distraction

Facing potential electoral disaster in November, the Republicans are desperate to change the subject from the real issues facing the country. They want to focus on distractions and irrelevant "problems". Look at the entry directly below this one--a graphic summary of the latest ABC News-Washington Post poll--and you'll understand why. On every single issue, the Republicans are on the losing end, even the fight against terrorism. Additionally, today's Rasmussen poll, which trends Republican, has the Republicans scraping bottom with 33% of the generic House vote (against 48% for the Democrats). If the undecideds were to split the same way, the Democrats would win 59% to 41% (!) if the election were held today. No wonder the radical Right is pushing the "marriage protection" amendment to the Constitution (which will NOT pass the Senate). The measure is designed to do one thing: stir up the maniacal hatred of gays that characterizes the emotionally crippled humans that make up the extreme Right's voters, and thus get them to go to the polls to support their beloved Georgie and all his Abramoff-connected friends in Congress. It's a cynical, ugly, hatred-driven piece of total bullshit. That's why I'm not surprised the Republicans are pushing it. Fear and hatred are the only things they know how to run on any more.

Democrats, the Nation Stands With Us!!

(From the ABC-Washington Post Poll)

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

ABC-Washington Post Poll: Democrats Lead on ALL Issues

The Democrats have a golden opportunity to win a smashing victory in November, but they haven't yet made the sale to a lot of Americans. Dissatisfaction with the Republicans is MASSIVE, however, and that opens the door. Highlights (with my emphases):
Democrats are now favored to handle all 10 issues measured in the Post-ABC News poll. The survey shows a majority of the public, 56 percent, saying they would prefer to see Democrats in control of Congress after the elections.

[A] warning for Democrats is that their improved prospects for November appear driven primarily by dissatisfaction with Republicans rather than by positive impressions of their own party. Congressional Democrats are rating only slightly more favorably than congressional Republicans, and 52 percent of those surveyed said the Democrats have not offered a sharp contrast to Bush and the Republicans.

Only a third want the GOP to remain in the majority in Congress. Nearly three times as many Americans say they will use the elections to express opposition to the president (30 percent) than to show support for him (12 percent).

Nearly nine in 10 Democrats and seven in 10 independents do not like the job Bush is doing as president.

The clearest sign of how Iraq dominates the public mood came in answer to another question, which asked those who disapprove of Bush's performance to cite a reason. Nearly half, 46 percent, said Iraq, easily the most frequently mentioned reason. In equal proportions, Republicans as well as Democrats who disapprove of Bush cite his performance in Iraq as the principal reason.

Bush's fading popularity is matched by waning popular support for the Republican-held Congress. A third of the country approves of the job Congress is doing -- identical to the president's poor job performance rating -- and a 10-year low. Even Republicans are divided over the performance of the Republican-controlled Congress: 49 percent approved while 47 disapproved, a view shared by seven in 10 Democrats and political independents.

Democrats hold an advantage of 52 percent to 40 percent when voters are asked whether they plan to vote for the Republican or Democratic candidate in their House district, a margin that didn't narrow when the preferences of only those most likely to cast ballots were analyzed. That 12-point Democratic margin is slightly smaller than in several previous polls.

The survey also found Democrats also had double-digit lead over Republicans on nine of the 10 issues when respondents were asked which party they favored to deal with the problem and a smaller lead on the 10th.

By 2 to 1 or better, the public preferred Democrats to handle gas prices and health care. And by double-digit margins, they preferred Democrats to deal with education (23 percentage points), the budget (20 points), the economy (18 points) and protecting privacy (15 points). Democrats also had a 14-point edge on handling Iraq, immigration and taxes.

Only on terrorism did Republicans come close -- though, by 46 to 41 percent, the public still preferred the Democrats.

The economy, followed by Iraq and immigration, lead a long and wide-ranging list of issues that voters say are most important to them at the ballot box this year. Among those who say the economy is their top issue -- about 17 percent of the public -- 56 percent say they will vote for the Democratic candidate in House races. Eleven percent named Iraq as their priority, and 79 percent of these plan to vote Democratic.

The survey also adds that if Democrats succeed in making the election a referendum on Bush, they will win big. If they don't succeed in making it a referendum, they won't.

The public WANTS THE DEMOCRATS TO OFFER A CLEAR CONTRAST TO BUSH. They want us to OPPOSE HIM. They are ready to vote for us if we do.

It's being handed to us on a plate. Let's take it. Remember the key points:

  • Give money to the Democrats. Hit the Republicans where it hurts.
  • Volunteer your time for your local Democratic candidates.
  • Don't let the Republicans suppress or steal the votes; get rid of Diebold in as many places as you can.
  • Register new Democrats to vote, ESPECIALLY SINGLE WOMEN, whose reproductive rights are being extinguished by the radical Right.
  • Get the vote out on Tuesday, 7 November--including yours.

Monday, May 15, 2006

See the True Depths of Bush's Massive Unpopularity

Check out this astoundingly bad for Bush Survey USA state-by-state breakdown. Highlights:

  • Bush is in postive--just barely--approval territory in only THREE STATES. They're Idaho, Utah, and Wyoming.
  • His disapproval stands at more 60% in such states as Kansas, Indiana, and South Carolina.
  • His disapproval rating is above 60% in 33 states and greater than 70% in eight of these.
  • He is losing his own state of Texas 42%-56%.

Yes, this is the man to whom Chris Matthews referred a few weeks ago as someone most everybody "kind of likes".

As Bugs Bunny would say, "What a maroon."

Bush Cut Plans for Thousands of Border Guards JUST LAST YEAR

And he has the nerve to call up an already overtaxed National Guard to patrol the southern border? This article sets the record straight:
Officially approved by Bush on Dec. 17 [2004] after extensive bickering in Congress, the National Intelligence Reform Act included the requirement to add 10,000 border patrol agents in the five years beginning with 2006. Roughly 80 percent of the agents were to patrol the southern U.S. border from Texas to California, along which thousands of people cross into the United States illegally every year.

But Bush's proposed 2006 budget, revealed Monday, funds only 210 new border agents. (Emphasis added)
Bush serious about border security? That's a joke, right?

Former Weapons Inspector: Bush Wasn't Interested in Facts

Read about it here. In the run-up for war, Bush and his people deliberately ignored or suppressed anything that contradicted their preconceived views and blatantly lied about it afterward. Intro graphs:
A year after Bush administration claims about Iraqi "bioweapons trailers" were discredited by American experts, U.S. officials were still suppressing the findings, says a senior member of the
CIA-led Iraq inspection team.

At one point, former U.N. arms inspector Rod Barton says, a CIA officer told him it was "politically not possible" to report that the White House claims were untrue. In the end, Barton says, he felt "complicit in deceit."
Read the rest for more depressing confirmation of the sheer bald-faced lies being told by Bush and his flunkies about Iraq.

An Astoundingly Important Article by Frank Rich

It's right here, courtesy of The Progressive American. It details the unbelievable chain of screw-ups and political ass coverings that have characterized Bush's appointees to key intelligence positions. It's also a tale of almost surreal incompetence. This was my "favorite" part:
It was under General Hayden [Bush's proposed new CIA chief] a self-styled electronic surveillance whiz, that the N.S.A. intercepted actual Qaeda messages on Sept. 10, 2001 — "Tomorrow is zero hour" for one — and failed to translate them until Sept. 12. That same fateful summer, General Hayden's N.S.A. also failed to recognize that "some of the terrorists had set up shop literally under its nose," as the national-security authority James Bamford wrote in The Washington Post in 2002. The Qaeda cell that hijacked American Flight 77 and plowed into the Pentagon was based in the same town, Laurel, Md., as the N.S.A., and "for months, the terrorists and the N.S.A. employees exercised in some of the same local health clubs and shopped in the same grocery stores."
My God, is there ANYTHING these idiots are capable of doing right? Anything at ALL??

What the Hell?!? Bush Admin. Monitoring Reporters' Calls!

It's being done to root out their confidential sources. This is the most blatant Bush attack on the freedom of the press yet. Details are here. Key graphs:
ABC News does not know how the government determined who we are calling, or whether our phone records were provided to the government as part of the recently-disclosed NSA collection of domestic phone calls.

Other sources have told us that phone calls and contacts by reporters for ABC News, along with the New York Times and the Washington Post, are being examined as part of a widespread CIA leak investigation.
You gotta hand it to Bush and his people. They really know their role models.
Like the old KGB.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Jack Cafferty's Correspondents Are Great

Hear a sample of their letters here, courtesy of YouTube. Hee hee.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Bush Scraping Bottom

Yet more bad news for the Boy King from Newsweek. His approval rating has dropped to 36%. This follows on the Harris Poll which puts His Fraudulency down 29%-71% (!) and the Gallup poll which has him down 31%-65% (!). The key section from the Newsweek article:
Iraq continues to be the biggest drain on the president’s popularity: 86 percent of Americans say the Iraq situation, coupled with new information about the decision to go to war, have negatively influenced their view of the president. Asked about Bush’s performance on a variety of issues, from the economy to taxes, respondents gave the president some of the worst marks of his tenure, and in no instance did approval reach more than 50 percent.

Anger over the recent spike in prices at the pump has cost the president dearly: only 17 percent of Americans approve of the way Bush is handling gas prices. Nor do they like the way he is dealing with the federal budget deficit (only 19 percent approve) or immigration policy (25 percent). Even as Congress was approving the latest Bush tax cuts this week, public opinion of his handling of taxes dropped to a record low for him of 39 percent. Half of Americans (50 percent) now think George W. Bush will go down in history as a “below-average” president. (Emphasis gleefully added.)
The survey also goes on to say that the majority of Americans find the phone record surveys being down by the NSA to be overly intrusive and that the Democrats hold at 17 point lead in the generic House election preferences.
As I've said over and over: Democrats, he's down. GO FOR THE SON OF A BITCH'S THROAT.
Kick the radical Republican Right HARD, where it counts. Nationalize the 2006 election. My message is simple:
  • Make the election a referendum on Bush, Cheney, and the Republican congressional leadership.
  • Push HARD for voting security. Don't let the Republicans count the votes and steal yet another election.
  • Work, give money, and volunteer time for your local Democrats.

The iron is white hot. STRIKE NOW!

Friday, May 12, 2006

No Contest: The People Say Clinton Was Far Better Than Bush

This poll will make the Rightwingers scream, wail, cry, gnash their teeth, rend their garments, roll on the ground in dog droppings, and pray for an early death. Heh heh heh:
Respondents favored Clinton by greater than 2-to-1 margins when asked who did a better job at handling the economy (63 percent Clinton, 26 percent Bush) and solving the problems of ordinary Americans (62 percent Clinton, 25 percent Bush).

On foreign affairs, the margin was 56 percent to 32 percent in Clinton's favor; on taxes, it was 51 percent to 35 percent for Clinton; and on handling natural disasters, it was 51 percent to 30 percent, also favoring Clinton.

Moreover, 59 percent said Bush has done more to divide the country, while only 27 percent said Clinton had.

When asked which man was more honest as president, poll respondents were more evenly divided, with the numbers -- 46 percent Clinton to 41 percent Bush -- falling within the poll's margin of error. The same was true for a question on handling national security: 46 percent said Clinton performed better; 42 percent picked Bush.
Am I gloating? You better F ' ing believe it!

Jack Cafferty Voices His Outrage--and Mine

Check out this video from Crooks and Liars. It's a commentary by CNN's Jack Cafferty. It expresses exactly my sentiments about Bush's latest police state move, i.e., keeping track of tens of millions of Americans' phone records. Go see for yourself.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

On the Road to a Republican Police State

This article in USA Today reveals the startling details of the extent of the Bush Administration's spying on its own citizens. The NSA, it seems, is collecting the phone records of tens of millions of Americans. Key graphs:
The NSA program reaches into homes and businesses across the nation by amassing information about the calls of ordinary Americans — most of whom aren't suspected of any crime. This program does not involve the NSA listening to or recording conversations. But the spy agency is using the data to analyze calling patterns in an effort to detect terrorist activity, sources said in separate interviews.

"It's the largest database ever assembled in the world," said one person, who, like the others who agreed to talk about the NSA's activities, declined to be identified by name or affiliation. The agency's goal is "to create a database of every call ever made" within the nation's borders, this person added.
(Emphasis Added)

For the customers of these companies, it means that the government has detailed records of calls they made — across town or across the country — to family members, co-workers, business contacts and others.
Create a database of every call ever made?? What in God's name is going on here??? These bastards have effectively suspended the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution, the right of our people to be secure from "unreasonable searches and seizures". This is a chilling development, a genuine outrage, and a very real step toward complete government control over our lives.
I have long known of Bush's hostility toward true democratic republicanism and his tendencies toward dictatorship. It's part of why I have so passionately opposed him. (In addition, as we have recently learned, Bush has effectively ignored more than 700 laws passed by Congress.) He is a dangerous man, a true enemy of our nation's well being. Only one thing will stop the slide toward authoritarian government: a massive Democratic victory in November.
That's when we crank up the investigations--and get some damned answers out of these Bush commisars.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

The Frightening Authoritarian Insanity of Rick Santorum

Consider if you will this quote from a 2003 interview AP interview with Little Ricky. Santorum was asked whether homosexual sex acts should be outlawed. His response:
We have laws in states, like the one at the Supreme Court right now, that has sodomy laws and they were there for a purpose. Because, again, I would argue, they [homosexual acts]undermine the basic tenets of our society and the family. And if the Supreme Court says that you have the right to consensual sex within your home, then you have the right to bigamy, you have the right to polygamy, you have the right to incest, you have the right to adultery. You have the right to anything. Does that undermine the fabric of our society? I would argue yes, it does. It all comes from, I would argue, this right to privacy that doesn't exist in my opinion in the United States Constitution, this right that was created, it was created in Griswold — Griswold was the contraceptive case — and abortion. And now we're just extending it out. And the further you extend it out, the more you — this freedom actually intervenes and affects the family. You say, well, it's my individual freedom. Yes, but it destroys the basic unit of our society because it condones behavior that's antithetical to strong healthy families. Whether it's polygamy, whether it's adultery, where it's sodomy, all of those things, are antithetical to a healthy, stable, traditional family. [Emphasis added]
Aside from the pure unadulterated idiocy of putting homosexual sex on the same moral plane as incest, Santorum's argument is terrifying. It implies that the government has the right to smash its way into your home and supervise your sex life. Imagine the monstrous police power Santorum and the other Republican Theocrats would be willing to sanction to enforce their "pro-family" agenda. And remember, homosexuality isn't the end. The reference to Griswold (the Supreme Court decision that struck down anti-contraceptive laws) is a clear signal that the Right's next target is birth control. Remember, the victory of people like Santorum means:
  • Gays in prison.
  • A government secret police to enforce the "morals" laws.
  • Pressure to outlaw "non-procreative" sex.
  • Outlawing of birth control.
  • Outlawing of abortion even in cases of rape or incest.
  • Right-wing pseudo-Christian fanatics governing every aspect of your life.

NOW, are you going to--

  • Give money to the Democrats?
  • Give volunteer time to your local Democratic organization?
  • Work for your local Democratic candidate for the House, Senate, and every other office?
  • Work as a poll worker to keep the Republicans from stealing another election?
  • Work to keep pressure on your state or district NOT to use voting machines made by pro-Bush Republicans?
  • Help dump Santorum's lunatic ass from the Senate in November?

Remember, it's too important for you not to be involved. I'll be there--how about you?

No, Mr. Krauthammer, It is Not 1938

Recently, conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer argued that the situation of Jews in the world today is as dangerous as it was in 1938, when Nazi Germany was on the march. The reason? The anti-Semitic, Holocaust-denying government of Iran, a government which seeks to obtain nuclear weapons, a government which has vowed to wipe out Israel. He even finds grim symbolic significance in the fact that Israel's population has reached 6 million. His underlying message? A strike on Iran is imperative if we are to prevent a second Holocaust.
Absolute rubbish. The position of Jews today is nowhere near the desperate circumstances of 1938, when Jews were denied safe haven even in the United States and there was no Jewish state in the world. Today, the world's greatest superpower is Israel's best friend. Israel itself is bristling with nuclear weapons which can be delivered in a variety of ways. Iran is five to ten years from having even a SINGLE nuclear weapon. Jews are not the friendless, practically defenseless people they were almost 70 years ago. Krauthammer's contention is absurd on its face and is hardly worth taking seriously.
Krauthammer is part of the same crowd that was willing to lie and exaggerate in order to stampede public opinion into a war in Iraq. This time, Chuck, it's gonna be no sale. The American people got suckered once. They won't swallow lies again. Israel is fully capable of defending itself, and even a government as stupid and reckless as that of Iran's understands that.

Monday, May 08, 2006

The "Great" Economy? The American People Don't Think So

The "good" economic news that Republicans are hoping will rescue their sorry, lying, Bush-loving, con artist asses is an illusion. Most Americans aren't buying it--and with good reason. They aren't experiencing it. Some key quotes:
Americans are more than twice as likely to give pollsters a negative assessment of the economy as a positive one — 64% disapprove of Bush's handling of the economy. It's strange. The macroeconomic numbers are decidedly robust, but the public remains determinedly glum. If you dig a bit deeper than the base growth statistics, though, the picture clarifies considerably. Our economy has grown so starkly unequal that the statistician's view now says surprisingly little about the average American's experience. Last quarter may have seen 4.8% growth, but hidden in those numbers was a depressing factoid: Wages had only grown 0.7% — slower than housing, health or gasoline costs. That's been the story of the last few years, a rising tide that lifts only yachts. (Emphasis added)
From 1990 to 1991, 13% of households saw their income decline by $20,000 or more in real terms. In 2003-04, it was 16.6%. And the difference didn't come in steep falls for the rich; rather, the top income quintile saw a reduction in negative income mobility. As for good ol' upward mobility, the median household was no more likely to move up the economic ladder during the 2003-04 expansion than it was during the 1990-91 recession. Think about that for a second — the average household's income was just as likely to increase during the last severe recession as the latest expansion. For most, the good times now are little better than the bad.
Meanwhile, health costs have increased almost 75% since 2000. And, according to a just-released study by the Commonwealth Fund, lack of insurance has become a decidedly working-class problem, with nearly 70% of the 49 million uninsured hailing from a family with at least one full-time worker.
Right wing hate radio and the Ministry of Propaganda, aka The Wall Street Journal's editorial board, keep trying to shove the lie of the "great Bush economy" down our throats. But most people are getting the short end of the stick, and they're calling the Republican happy talk exactly what it is: bullshit.

The New Republican Bonanza for the Super Rich

The depressing details are here. This chart will help you visualize it nicely.

They have no shame. Now, it's simply looting.

Gallup: Bush Approval Sinks to 31%

And 65%--SIXTY-FIVE PER CENT--disapprove.

Democrats, tie Bush around the neck of EVERY FREAKING REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE IN AMERICA--and watch the damned, stinking Republican Party go down the crapper this November. The Republicans have lived by Bush. Now, let them die by him (electorally, of course). Heh.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Late Night Opinions and Rants

For whatever it's worth:

  • The new right wing war is against contraception. Don't be surprised if you see efforts made to outlaw it or severely restrict it. I'm going to state this as clearly as possible: safe, effective contraception is a fundamental human right for ALL sexually active people. The right's war against it is part and parcel of its ancient, insane, inhuman war against the erotic, which it views as deviant, sinful, disgusting, and degrading. All rational and decent people need to fight against the new Junior Anti-Sex League (to borrow from Orwell) and preserve the right of people to make intimate decisions for themselves.
  • By the way, "abstinence only" sex education is for imbeciles. When you compare the low teen pregnancy rates of Germany and the Netherlands, where sane sex education occurs, to the appalling rates in the U.S., where the right has fought sex education tooth and nail, you need look no further for evidence.
  • Kevin Phillips pointed out something that I found remarkably insightful in his book American Theocracy: fundamentalist Christianity in America is rooted in the belief that the wrong side won the American Civil War. The southern churches that are the source of fundamentalism are the ones that broke away from their northern counterparts during the war and worked overtime after it to uphold the "Southern Tradition" and the view that the North was in the wrong. Southern fundamentalism is rooted deeply and profoundly in Confederate nostalgia. Again, speaking as clearly as possible: The North was right and the South was wrong in the Civil War. A Southern victory would have had two major outcomes: the destruction of the United States and the perpetuation of human slavery. Abraham Lincoln is America's greatest hero, and the utter crushing of the Confederacy was a magnificent thing. Period. Moderate and Liberal Christianity has to take a firm stand against fundamentalism's terrible roots.
  • And speaking of all this, every single Confederate flag lover should take his flag, fold it five times, and put it where the Moon don't shine. TO HELL with the Confederate flag, now and forever.
  • Is there any form of crime or sin that Bush's right wing fanatic supporters have not aided and abetted, from screwing the poor to endorsing (if only by inaction) the use of torture to raping the environment to bankrupting our children's future? That these people consider themselves "morally better" than moderates, liberals, and others is a sick joke. They base their estimation of their own moral worth chiefly on the fact that they loathe all genuine human sexuality, including their own. And these perverts claim they have the right to run everyone else's lives?
  • The Right's war on evolution, climatology, and all other areas of science will eventually force the world scientific community to gravitate to India and China. Thus in addition to wrecking the financial status of the U.S., embroiling America in an ill-advised and disastrous foreign war, stirring up a new social war in the U.S., and fostering an astonishingly vile culture of corruption in business and Congress, the Republicans are going to succeed in destroying America's scientific preeminence as well.
  • Any Democrat, progressive, liberal, alarmed moderate, appalled Independent, and fed up Republican that doesn't vote, work, and contribute money toward a Democratic victory this year is betraying his or her country's future. Don't be one of them.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Try the Tricky Ricky Hypocrisy Wheel!

It's fun and easy! What fun things about soon-to-be ex-Senator Rick Santorum will you find out? Let's see!
Personally, I like this one the best so far!
Santorum Said Pennsylvania Was Facing Medical Malpractice Crisis. At an April 27, 2005 press event on Capitol Hill, Santorum said, “One of the reasons I’m so passionate about this is because Pennsylvania - if there’s a state in crisis in this country more than Pennsylvania I want to find out where they are.” “We are in a situation that - we [Pennsylvania] are losing physicians like we’ve never seen. There are 36,000 physicians in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania seven years ago last year we were down to 32,000 physicians. … We have a CRISIS in Pennsylvania…”

Pennsylvania Courts Released Statistics Showing that the State has Seen a “Sustained Decline” in Medical Malpractice. On April 25, 2006 - two days before Santorum claimed his state was facing a lawsuit “crisis” - the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts released data on medical malpractice case filings and verdicts for 2005 that showed “a sustained decline in the number of med mal lawsuits filed statewide.” According to the data, between 2000 and 2005, the number of medical malpractice case filings dropped 35 percent - from 2,632 in 2000 to 1,698 in 2005.

Statistics from American Medical Association Show that the Number of Doctors in the U.S. and Pennsylvania is Actually Increasing. According to the most recent statistics from the American Medical Association, the number of physicians in the United States is up more than 40 percent since 1990 - from 615,421 to 884,974 in 2004.[1] Over the same time period, the total U.S. population increased by only 18 percent - from 248.7 million in 1990 to an estimate of 293.9 million in 2004.[2] In Pennsylvania, the overall number of physicians increased from 30,824 in 1990 to 40,832 in 2004.[3]

[1] U.S. Census Bureau data.[2] “Physician Characteristics and Distribution in the U.S.,” American Medical Association, 1992 edition, p.172; “Physician Characteristics and Distribution in the U.S.,” American Medical Association, 2006 edition, p.133[3] “Physician Characteristics and Distribution in the U.S.,” American Medical Association, 2006 edition, p.312
(By the way, did you ever notice how much these conservative clowns like Santorum and John Stossel basically lie about EVERY aspect of the medical malpractice situation?)

Watch Rumsfeld Lie Through His Teeth on WMD

This video of the arrogant, incompetent, lying bastard who calls himself our Defense Secretary is truly revealing. Rumsfeld's efforts at dissembling, when confronted by former CIA agent Ray McGovern, are a masterpiece of dishonesty and denial. Impressive, in a perverse way.
A detached, incompetent, callous moral cretin as president. A truly evil, unprincipled criminal as vice president. A lying sycophant as Secretary of State. And the worst War/Defense secretary in American history in charge of the Pentagon. Add to this a Republican congress filled with con artists and right wing fanatics, and you see immediately the depth of the crisis this country is in.

Midterm Presidential Popularity: Guess Who's at the Bottom?

(Via Sully)

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Idiocy on the March

My favorite examples:

  • Creationism in all its forms
  • Scientology
  • The fans of Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Sean Hannity, and Bill O'Reilly
  • The fact that Americans as a group actually spend every cent they make and then some
  • Religious fundamentalism in general and End Times predictions in particular
  • The Iranian government
  • Holocaust deniers
  • Arena football
  • My own country's government
  • Pet psychics
  • "Get rich through real estate!" scams
  • Extended warranties
  • Giving priority to sports and band instead of academics in our schools and communities
  • Crystal meth
  • People who still think Bush is an honest man
  • Sending money to TV preachers
  • Street gang chic
  • Giving a rat's ass about anything connected to Lindsay Lohan, Ashton Kutcher, or David Spade
  • Thinking American Idol is more important than politics and current events
  • Interest-only mortgages
  • Smoking, despite 40 years of warnings
  • Virtually anything on VH1 or MTV
  • Listening to Dick Morris, Joe Klein, or Chris Matthews
  • The Neo-Confederate movement
  • Sen. George Allen, the stupidest, most malicious member of the Senate, and therefore the Far Right's Dream Candidate for 2008
  • Paying $6 for a cup of coffee
  • People and Us magazines
  • 90% of all radio
  • Actual real live Communists (not you, Jon!)
  • Living on fast food
  • Putting up with television shows being interrupted every eight minutes for three minutes of commercials

OK, I'm done ranting for a while.

Monday, May 01, 2006

It Was Three Years Ago Today...

that our disgusting so-called "President" played dress-up like an overgrown boy and pranced around an aircraft carrier under a banner proclaiming "Mission Accomplished". He blatantly used the military for political purposes and proclaimed an "end" to the combat in Iraq. Well, here's a comparison of the situation then and the situation now, three years after combat "ended", courtesy of Think Progress:
There's your "Mission Accomplished" Georgie Boy. Feel like playing dress up again?

Yes, Outing Valerie Plame Hurt Our Country

Watch this remarkable MSNBC video and draw your own conclusions. At the time White House Traitor Karl Rove outed her, Valerie Plame was working on monitoring the transference of nuclear technology TO IRAN. Yes, to Iran. Her outing SIGNIFICANTLY DAMAGED U.S. EFFORTS TO MONITOR IRAN'S PROGRESS. Her outing was a CRIME AGAINST THIS NATION.
Got it, all you right wing clowns? Got it all you Limbaugh dittoheads? Got it all you O'Reilly fans and Hannity worshipers? Once and for all
G-d damned time, do you understand??