Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
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.
Sunday, May 28, 2006
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.
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.
Saturday, May 27, 2006
The High Weirdness Project.
Institute for the Advancement of Violence [Warning: Some truly strange things here.]
Crank Dot Net
Incoming Signals Archives
It's the End of the World As We Know It...Again
The Black Vault
Pickover's Home Page
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!]
Friday, May 26, 2006
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.
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.
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
- 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
- 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'.
Monday, May 22, 2006
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.”
Sunday, May 21, 2006
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.
Saturday, May 20, 2006
Thursday, May 18, 2006
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
[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
- 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."
But Bush's proposed 2006 budget, revealed Monday, funds only 210 new border agents. (Emphasis added)
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."
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.
Sunday, May 14, 2006
Saturday, May 13, 2006
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.)
- 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
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.
Thursday, May 11, 2006
"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.
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
- 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?
Monday, May 08, 2006
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
- 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
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. 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. In Pennsylvania, the overall number of physicians increased from 30,824 in 1990 to 40,832 in 2004.
 U.S. Census Bureau data. “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 “Physician Characteristics and Distribution in the U.S.,” American Medical Association, 2006 edition, p.312
Tuesday, May 02, 2006
- Creationism in all its forms
- 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
May 1, 2003 /Today
U.S. Troops Wounded
U.S. Troops Killed
Size of U.S. Forces
Size of Iraqi Security Forces
Number of Insurgents
Insurgent Attacks Per Day
Cost to U.S. Taxpayers
$79 billion/ $320 billion
Approval of Bush’s Handling of Iraq
Percentage of Americans who Believe The Iraq War Was “Worth Fighting”
Bush’s Overall Job Approval
G-d damned time, do you understand??