Monday, April 30, 2007

Need Help Switching to Linux?

Dave is describing his personal journey.

"Forged Memo Leads to Cheney"

Developing at Raw Story. If it's the Niger yellowcake memo - then this is a rather large deal.

Update: It is.

Rep. Talking Points: D.C. Madam Scandal

Get ready for them because they're going to come hard and heavy and they're are going to start coming RIGHT NOW. What will they say:

Talking Point: "You're the ones who say prostitution should be legal! Guess you're not so liberal after all. HYPOCRITES!"

Response: Completely beside the point. Any member of today's Republican "Morality Police" Party should be dragged into the street with their pants around their ankles if they're caught with a prostitute. Legally or illegally.

Talking Point: "It's the Liberals fault, because they say prostitution should be legal. They've decayed our values and it's even affecting good people (Republicans)."

Response: Shut up, idiot. (What else can you say to such lunacy?)

Talking Point: "I guess your precious "right to privacy" isn't for Republicans, huh? HYPROCRITES!"

Response: Are you saying that buying a prostitute should be protected as a private act? It should be legal? If not, then you can't claim a right to privacy here: criminal acts, whether you think they should be criminal or not, are not protected by the right to privacy. And again, publicizing brazen hypocrisy by public officials is good for our country.

Talking Point: "Bill Clinton! Bill Clinton! Bill Clinton! Kathleen Willey! Bill Clinton! Juanita Broaddrick! BillClintonBillClintonBillClinton!!!" (Chris Matthews will become hoarse shouting this this week. Limbaugh too.)

Response: Bite me. And when you're done biting me, what do you think about your prostitute-loving Bush administration officials? Don't they seem like hypocrites? Don't they? Huh? (Not a great response, but pulling the One-Size-Fits-All Bill Clinton Strawman is so weak it's hard to know what to say to it. Bite me.)

Of course if there are Dems snagged in this - and there will be, I'm sure - they'll scream their names and say that going after Repubs is hypocritical since there are Dems on the list. Screw that. This is about the fundamental dishonesty and hypocrisy that lies at the heart of today's Republican Party. This is about the Rush Limbaughs, Bill Bennets, Ted Haggards, Mark Foleys, Tom DeLays, Newt Gingrichs, David Driers, Bob Livingstons, Dick Cheneys, Karl Roves, and George W. Bushs who have incessantly portrayed themselves as God's Own Cleanup Crew who will fight the depravity of the Democratic Party while proving again and again to being so fundamentally and unrepentantly deceitful that you sometimes have to wonder if they have lied so perfectly that they believe their lies themselves.

This is about exposing them for what they are. Don't hold back.

Heck of a Randy Job, Randall

Speaking of immigration, doesn't everybody know we need hard working Central Americans in the U.S. of A.?

And it looks like it's time for President Bush to give someone a medal.

Rush Limbaugh: Just a Regular Guy

Yes, he speaks for the regular hard working stiff:

RADIO host Rush Limbaugh is far from conservative when it comes to his big appetite. The Post's Braden Keil reports that Limbaugh and a female companion lived large at Kobe Club last Thursday night, devouring bacon with truffles, Japanese strip steak, Kobe beef cheek ravioli, a large seafood platter, a combo of American, Australian and Japanese wagyu steaks and several "side" dishes. After finishing their $700 feast, Limbaugh left the server a $1,000 tip. On a previous night, Limbaugh and another female friend were spotted by patrons sharing a $4,000 bottle of wine at '21.'


Add that to the Viagra vacations, and his eight-year, $285 million salary, and he's about as regular hard working American as you can get.

Hey wait: Don't the terrorists hate us because we're so decadent?

Hey wait II: bottle of wine? Limbaugh was treated for addiction and agreed to random drug tests. Little risky there, Rush.

Bush-Appointed Millionaire Digs For Firing Bonus?

That would be Paul Wolfowitz, outgoing head of the World Bank, which, one finds it easy to forget, has as its primary goal ending poverty. Rich, huh? Steve Clemons at the Washington Note:

Secondly, allegedly on June 1st, Wolfowitz becomes eligible for some large financial bonus -- for performance and time on the job. One estimate puts this figure at about $400,000. Wolfowitz wants to make sure those funds are credited to his private bank account before saying farewell to an institution that has come to despise him.


Much more over there.

Still Looking For a Patsy War Czar

Bush still wants a Commander in Chief's Chief so he can say, "I truly am not that concerned about the War in Iraq." It's somebody else's problem now. The article puts the onus on Stephen Hadley, but it's really Bush trying to get a pass here.

Keeping Immigration in the News

That's what things like this will always be about. Until someone said to make this an issue, knowing that the naturally xenophobic and fearfully racist would bite on it like carp on garbage, illegal immigration would be the backwater issue it always has.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Burqavaganza

What happens when fundamentalists get too much power, via the BBC:

Anger at Pakistan burka play ban

The head of a Pakistani theatre company whose play about burkas was banned by the government has said that she is hurt and astonished by the decision.

The government banned the play because it said that it made "unacceptable fun" out of Pakistani culture.

Madeeha Gauhar, head of the Ajoka Theatre group, said that there was nothing offensive in the production against Islam or any other religion.

She said that she was being pulled up for "promoting moderation".


Unacceptable Fun-damenalists.

Trial by Jury and Democracy

From Raw, tomorrow's New York Times has a fascinating story about the state of our justice system and how it speaks to our relationship with our government.

The Times points out in particular that "in criminal cases, the vast majority of prosecutions end in plea bargains" and quotes a judge as complaining that defendents "who have the temerity to 'request the jury trial guaranteed them under the U.S. Constitution' ... face 'savage sentences' that can be five times as long as those meted out to defendants who plead guilty and cooperate with the government."


The importance of trial by jury:

Indeed, juries were central to the framers of the Constitution, who guaranteed the right to a jury trial in criminal cases, and to the drafters of the Bill of Rights, who referred to juries in the Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Amendments. Jury trials may be expensive and time-consuming, but the jury, local and populist, is a counterweight to central authority and is as important an element in the constitutional balance as the two houses of Congress, the three branches of government and the federal system itself.


Fingers and Toes: Who Needs 'Em?

From the Village Voice, meet David.

Hammerhead

Amazing video of a hammerhead shark going after a hooked tarpon.



Turks on the Street

Protesting FOR secularism and against fundamentalisits.

Go Turks.

Live Blogging the Sabres!

Every 20 minutes or so.

Hell of a game so far. First period, nine minutes left.

It was a kicking motion. He got the stick on his skate and he shot his leg forward. No question. Everybody shut up.



Where's the Good News on Iraq?

Next time someone says "They're building schools and hospitals and you never hear about that," tell them there might be a reason for that.

The United States has previously admitted, sometimes under pressure from federal inspectors, that some of its reconstruction projects have been abandoned, delayed or poorly constructed. But this is the first time inspectors have found that projects officially declared a success in some cases, as little as six months before the latest inspections were no longer working properly.


Iglesias on Real Time

The fired U.S. Attorney speaks.



Check out near the end when the Concervative commentator tries, really pathetically, to roll out the "it's a political position" line. It is so easily slapped down and she has a brain freeze that's almost embarrassing. Then she goes to "but where's the crime?" thing. That one riles me because I've never heard, and again not here, someone say "Since when does not knowing all the facts stop an investigation?" There is evidence pointing to possible wrongdoing. If knowing exactly what was going on was the criteria for raising questions and investigating the possible commission of a crime then there would be a whole lot of crimes left univestigated. It's as weak as the "you serve at the pleasure of the president" crap.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

"Statistics show that condoms really have not been very effective."

Guess who said that. Go on - guess.

If you guessed the world's AIDS Czar who only gets massages from $300 an hour call girls - you win!

100s of Millions in Katrina Aid Rejected or Wasted

Hard to know what to say.

Allies offered $854 million in cash and in oil that was to be sold for cash. But only $40 million has been used so far for disaster victims or reconstruction, according to U.S. officials and contractors. Most of the aid went uncollected, including $400 million worth of oil. Some offers were withdrawn or redirected to private groups such as the Red Cross. The rest has been delayed by red tape and bureaucratic limits on how it can be spent.


It's not like they needed it or anything.

Oh man, this:

In one exchange, State Department officials anguished over whether to tell Italy that its shipments of medicine, gauze and other medical supplies spoiled in the elements for weeks after Katrina's landfall on Aug. 29, 2005, and were destroyed. "Tell them we blew it," one disgusted official wrote. But she hedged: "The flip side is just to dispose of it and not come clean. I could be persuaded."


Your Bush administration at work.

General Odom Rips "AWOL" Bush

Ouch. No really, OUCH!

The whole "politicians overriding military commanders" shtick just got old in a hurry.

Sen. Durbin: We Knew They Were Lying

Chew on this. Hope you don't puke.

I don't know. If he knew he should have told us. Screw the vow of secrecy. He should have said something and gone to prison if he had to. It would have been the right thing to do.

More here.

And a blistering letter to George Tenet from former intelligence officials.

Goodling Email Ordered USAtty Doc. Deletion

Here and here.

Email Interview With Samuel Lipari

George Oilwellian over at Democratic Underground has kept this discussion (here too) alive for some days now, and I see Mr. Lipari himself chimed in over there. He mentioned that he had answered my questions but that I hadn't posted them yet. Well, here they are. I would have rather had a bit more time to sum things up afterwards, but I can do that later on today or tomorrow. He also sent some documents that I haven't gone through yet.

My sincere thanks to Mr. Lipari for his time


Mr. Lipari:

I think I understand the gist of what Medical Supply Chain does, but can you give somebody new to the story your description?

We automate the purchasing and replenishing of supplies for hospitals. Our software creates an electronic marketplace that includes all potential suppliers, the opposite of what happens now. Hospitals save money from the continuing competition. Hospitals also save money from having to use significantly less labor to order and pay for their supplies.

I'm a little confused about the lawsuits. How many have you filed; how many have been resolved one way or another; how many are ongoing and when were they filed?

Its just one lawsuit in reality. I started by seeking just an injunction against US Bank to keep them from preventing my first round of operating funds from being deposited in escrow accounts. By then I knew they were part of the hospital supply cartel through Piper Jaffray. I alleged the conspiracy with Novation and the rest but the law did not require me to make the rest defendants. The defense firms (including Dorsey & Whitney LLP who will figure in the Minnesota USA resignations and later Vinson & Elkins where Gonzales) were able to convince the judge that the injunction request should be dismissed because I did not make the other conspirators defendants. From this gross error onward no decision in federal court has ever reflected the controlling law or facts of the case. Since there were co-conspirators like GE and Neoforma I get to sue them too. I have not yet sued GHX, LLC the electronic marketplace all the competitors formed.

Courts are like legislatures. A lot of lobbying has been done since the 1970’s to discourage enforcement of antitrust law. The law hasn’t changed and was even adopted by the European Union. I think healthcare is so messed up that even judges are now starting to realize the law worked and its enforcement is needed.

You say USAtty Todd P. Graves was "fired." I can't find backup on that. Can you provide?

I have discovery. Everyone is entitled to that information, just tell your public servant Alberto Gonzales to give it to you and if he don’t tell his boss and if Bush doesn’t make it available, start the impeachment.

Unfortunately, I have to limit what I put out because I am still seeking court discovery orders. When they come it will likely be with strict protective orders. This is not a government case. Mr. Gonzales is responsible for the government’s case against Novation. If you want it handled differently, find some way to communicate it to him.

Similarly, you say the three prosecutors who left the Ft. Worth office shortly after the deaths of the two others were "fired." Can you show me documentation of that?

Again, same answer. We are using the word fired for the AUSA’s after the mainstream press started to use it to describe government attorneys who were invited to leave. White collar crime specialists were surplus to the Bush administration.

What was happening specifically in Ft. Worth regarding your case at the time of the death of Thelma Colbert, and again at the time of the death of Shannon Ross, and again at the time of the leaving of the three prosecutors?

Sadly, what was happening is that some people in Justice were watching the Democratic Convention on t.v. They believed in John Kerry and they thought Ashcroft wouldn’t be their boss much longer and they started doing their job.

This was the government case against Novation and they were seeing how Retractible technologies was being kept out of the market by Novation. They also saw how stock in high tech IPO’s (the US Bancorp Piper Jaffray connection) and money changed hands to determine which products were distributed. To this day the press releases about Novation you read are announcements of exclusive deals.

Also the AUSA’s for Texas saw Neoforma that had burned through $900 million dollars and was a publicly traded company with cooked books. Much of it money belonging to hospitals. Later when we kept going after the Justice Department got obstructed, GE had to step in and come up with the money to take Neoforma private since we were proving our case even without discovery.

I don’t know what happened to the Justice department case. We are after Novation for every item they furnish to hospitals not just the few devices Justice was targeting.

You noted that the NYTimes has done two stories on Novation and GPOs in general, in 2002 and 2004, I believe. What, if any, changes to the industry came about because of that? How much, in your mind, still needs changing?

I am a Republican and I am against increased regulation. But I have to admit private action, even when the law was clearly on our side and the defendants were press releasing and making SEC disclosures of the evidence does not work. Regulation may be the only way to deal with the corruption.

How does your lawsuit compare to Retractable Technologies [sic] ? They seem to have won. Why has that case concluded and not yours?

Retractable had been capitalized. When they were hurt by the cartel they were able to obtain great counsel, but ultimately they settled and the market and health workers exposed to the danger by Novation weren’t helped. We kept going and because of the coverage in FW Weekly, the alternative press paper that broke the Enron story, Novation finally announced they would allow competing suppliers for syringes and hospitals would be allowed to buy safe needles. That’s just one line item, I got several thousand more to go.

You said that USAtty Bradley Schlozman, Todd Graves' replacement, "failed to enforce civil rights laws related to the Novation LLC defendants success in getting Medical Supply Chain's counsel Bret D. Landrith disbarred." Can you explain this? (http://www.kscourts.org/kscases/supct/2005/20051209/94333.htm)

I have included articles about Mr. Landrith. We all were shocked that was happening. Now we know that like antitrust law, Justice wasn’t enforcing civil rights law.

What do you say to charges, and I've just heard them recently, that you're claiming connections to the U.S. Attorney firing scandal to get publicity? Or that you're simply a "conspiracy theorist"? Or that you're "lawsuit happy"?

The judge that dismissed the federal claims now being appealed stated his personal opinion about the uncontested facts in my affidavit. I understand where he was coming from. Certainly a federal judge had to approve domestic wire tapping. About a month later Bush came forward and admitted the domestic wire tapping was being done without court orders.

You wrote on April 9, 2007: "Medical Supply Chain founder Samuel Lipari unearthed a US Department of Justice memo revealing the Office of the Attorney General had targeted not eight but ten US Attorneys including the former attorney for the Western District of Missouri, Todd P. Graves." You wrote "not eight but ten," but only named Graves. Who is the ninth USAtty? Can you share the memo?

Again same answer. Get it from Gonzales or be responsible and change out your government officials to ones that follow the law.

What is PressRelease 365? Are you writing all the releases that show up there and on PRBuzz? They don't all carry bylines.

I write or oversee all press releases coming from Medsupply. Our babysitters had word that we were planning a press release with our usual service and in the midst of changing it to meet their requirements they decided that no change we made would be acceptable. So we switched to PressRelease 365 and PR Buzz. Better service, better performance and lower rates. Competition is wonderful.

Are there still Medicare Fraud or similar cases ongoing against Novation and similar GPOs? Do you feel they are being properly acted on?

I think investigations were started. In the culture of Justice even before Bush, the doctors and hospitals were prosecuted, not the GPO’s or even the big insurance administrators. The Blue Cross Blue Shield Medicare administration qui tam cases have a history of Justice protecting the big contractors so that they could make more false claims. Ultimately it’s the beneficiaries of this that have the money needed for political campaigns, not the whistleblowers or efficient honest competitors.

Why isn't this story already more widely known?

I think a lot of people are starting to compare our concentrated ownership press with foreign countries and seeing the harm caused. The British Channel 4 broadcast on our site about Novation is great but then if you are old enough you remember American network tv doing real investigative reporting and you get sad because you can see it isn’t happening any more.

Anything more you'd like to add that you feel people should know?

Keep on your representatives. I think blogs are influential now. During the Gonzales hearing, people started sharing on line their realization that the Judiciary committee didn’t share Leahy and Specter’s commitment to stop the lawlessness at Justice. When the Senators came back from lunch they realized from the feedback that we have much higher expectations of them.

*****

I hope to be able to follow up next week. Any suggestions about questions that arose or that I missed - you know where to leave them.


Like the Pope Said: No More Limbaugh

Well not yet, but the floor boards under the Human Fart and his Large Microphone are creaking louder, and maybe, just maybe, the next few months will find an end to that sad chapter in the fine history of radio.

Global War on LOOK OVER THERE!

That's not terrorism! They're just exciteable boys! Nothing terroristic about it at all! Look! An Arab! And for geyad's sake don't look here!

Friday, April 27, 2007

One Pair of Testilcles Pops Back Out [Updated]

Oh Dear Margaret, it looks as though two of those 10,000 on Madam Palfrey's list just popped back out again. Pop!

ABC reported on its Web site late Friday that Tobias confirmed that he had called the Pamela Martin and Associates escort service to have women come to his condo and give him massages. More recently, Tobias told the network, he has been using a service with Central American women.


I'm guessing Rush Limbaugh may be popping into the news soon...

And who knows, maybe Tobias will still be replacing Wolfowitz. He seems qualified.

UPDATE: Oh deat Margaret and her sisters: Tobias was an Abstinence Crusader. Don't just hide the children - hide the condoms.

Tobias Replacing Wolfowitz? [Not]

The Friday night document and news dump is upon us, and in it we find that State Department employee Randall Tobias has resigned for "personal reasons". Unexpectedly.

Who's he? Well he was once on the short list for Wolfowitz's job at the World bank.

Could it be? We'll see, and probably soon.

A recent look at the Big Bad one.

Not: Uh, no. Post above pretty much sums it up.

Waxman Demands White House Tillman Docs

Damn, Waxman's going after it:

In the letter to the White House, Waxman writes, "To assist the Committee with its investigation, I ask that you provide documents relating to how and when White House officials learned of the circumstances surrounding Corporal Tillman's death."

"Specifically, the Committee requests that you provide all documents received or generated by any official in the Executive Office of the President, including the Communications Office and Office of Speechwriting, between April 22, 2002, and July I , 2004, that relate to Corporal Tillman," Waxman's letter continues. "These documents should be provided to the Committee by Friday, May 18, 2007."


Office of Speechwriting? Are they talking about the White House Correspondents Dinner speech?

Oh dang, they are.

Democrats hope that the documents will reveal whether President Bush knew the true nature of Tillman’s death before he talked about the NFL star-turned-Army Ranger at the 2004 White House Correspondents Dinner.


Hey, Damnit: Listen to Me!

If only I were more important.
 Sigh.

Last week I wrote Scott Bloch Must Appoint Another Special Counsel. Bloch is the head of the Office of Special Counsel, which has begun an investigation - a long-needed an unarguably very important investigation - into Karl Rove's office. (Details in that link and more here at The Carpetbagger.)

If only they'd listened:

No sooner had the U.S. Office of Special Counsel announced a wide-ranging probe into allegedly improper political activities by White House officials and appointees than the effort has run aground, according to Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) and the Project On Government Oversight. Further complicating matters, Special Counsel Scott Bloch’s pledge to investigate the White House comes as a White House-commissioned investigation into misconduct charges against Bloch enters its final stage.


Oh you bastards.

"It makes no sense for Scott Bloch to investigate the White House while the White House investigates Bloch,” stated PEER Executive Director Jeff Ruch, noting that Bloch has told allies that the White House has twice asked Bloch to resign but Bloch, who is in the midst of a fixed five-year term, can only be removed for cause. “Bloch should recuse himself from this case and hand the matter over either to career staff at OSC or to an outside entity, such as the relevant Inspectors General or Congress.”


Oy weh. More on this particular manifestation of Bush-Republican sickness here. Mind the open sores.

He Was Appointed by Clinton!

Of course he's going to go after Bush! 
And he admits he said the WMD case was a "slam dunk" - and that he approved the 2002 NIE on Iraq's weapons programs! So he's just as culpable as Bush and Cheney! Maybe more! This is all the ravings of a frustrated and humiliated Liberal with a book to sell!...

I could go on, but I'll let Chris Matthews, Pat Buchanan, everyone at Fox News, and every Right Wing blog in existence take it from there.

All so we won't have to waste our beautiful minds on moments like these:

“There was never a serious debate that I know of within the administration about the imminence of the Iraqi threat,” Mr. Tenet writes in a devastating judgment that is likely to be debated for many years. Nor, he adds, “was there ever a significant discussion” about the possibility of containing Iraq without an invasion.


Ho hum. Remember, he was only the Director of the CIA, so it's hardly relevant. And besides, we all know that mistakes were made, but we are where we are today and we have to move forward...


Thursday, April 26, 2007

Aww: the Monster Masher is Dead

If you're around my age, you remember this genius stirringly. Oh what the hell, let's do the Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band version:



Email Interview With Samuel Lipari [Updated]

This story on Medicare fraud, an alleged misuse of the Patriot Act, an alleged connection to the U.S. Attorney purge, and more, has generated little interest in the big media world as of late. Maybe with good reason. I just don't know. 
But it is, even without the intrigue, a fascinating story about how our hospitals work - and how they should not work. The New York Times on that from 2004.

One of the figures in the story is Samuel Lipari, CEO of Medical Supply Chain, a St Louis [Kansas City] company that he says can save American health care consumers billions of dollars. But, says Lipari, nefarious forces in the corporate and political world thwarted him and his company.

I contacted Mr. Lipari a few weeks ago and he agreed to answer a list of questions. He just notified me that his responses will be coming in early next week.

UPDATED: Answers in. Coming tonight [Erg. "Tonight" means Friday night. And possibly Saturday. Work work work...]

Carol Lam Fired for Being "Outstanding Attorney of the Year"

Heeelarious:

Carol Lam, one of eight former U.S. attorneys across the country whose dismissals have ignited a political firestorm and calls for the resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, has been named outstanding attorney of the year by the San Diego County Bar Association, the organization announced Wednesday afternoon.


Army Prison Chief in Iraq Arrested: "improper relationship with a detainee's daughter," Aiding the Enemy

Winning hearts and minds:
A U.S. Army officer who was commander of a military prison in Iraq has been charged with giving a cell phone to suspected insurgents who were detained there, a charge described as "aiding the enemy," according to the U.S. military.

Lt. Col. William H. Steele, who was commander of the U.S. Army's Camp Cropper, also was charged with having an improper relationship with a detainee's daughter and an interpreter and possessing pornography, the military said.

Camp Cropper, located near Baghdad International Airport, houses thousands of suspected insurgent detainees and some high profile prisoners. Former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was held there until he was hanged last December.


You want to talk about "demoralizing the troops"? Couldn't think of something that would do it more than this.

You may remember this story about Camp Cropper:

The detainee was Donald Vance, a 29-year-old Navy veteran from Chicago who went to Iraq as a security contractor. He wound up as a whistle-blower, passing information to the F.B.I. about suspicious activities at the Iraqi security firm where he worked, including what he said was possible illegal weapons trading.

But when American soldiers raided the company at his urging, Mr. Vance and another American who worked there were detained as suspects by the military, which was unaware that Mr. Vance was an informer, according to officials and military documents.

At Camp Cropper, he took notes on his imprisonment and smuggled them out in a Bible.


***Well, at least Steele won an MP3 player.

Condi Not Inclined to Appear [Updated]

We'll see. Go get 'em, Waxman.

UPDATE: I just realized that one thing Rice said in that story jumped out when I read it:

"This all took place in my role as national security adviser," she said. "There is a constitutional principle. There is a separation of powers and advisers to the president under that constitutional principle are not generally required to go and testify in Congress."


"Are not generally required."

It's been pointed out many times that the Republican line of "separation of powers" and "executive privelege" for such discussions meant absolutely nothing to Republicans when Clinton was president, so I guess she felt like she had to cover her ass with that weak little statement.

More on the testimony of 31 Clinton administration aides.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Bank-sy

BBC.

Thank You, Bill Moyers

***

UK "Coroner attacks 'inexcusable' US"

From the BBC:

A coroner has called it "inexcusable" that US authorities failed to release evidence about the first UK casualties of the Iraq war.
Andrew Walker was speaking at the reopening of an inquest into the fatal helicopter crash in March 2003.

The eight servicemen died along with four US marines in Kuwait.

American authorities would not give evidence or provide relevant videotape to the court despite all efforts by the MoD, the coroner said.


The military, and probably militaries all over the world, always do this. Jessica Lynch, Pat Tillman, Haditha, Abu Ghraib... They obviously have an insanely difficult and dangerous job - but telling the truth about incidents like these is not one of them. Someone needs to tell that to people like Hinderaker.

Gibson Calls Iraqis "Knuckle-Dragging Savages"

Via Atrios, Fox News host John Gibson actually called Iraqis "knuckle-dragging savages from the 10th century."

I guess his support for the Iraq War has been based on - what? His deep-seated concern for democracy loving Iraqis knuckle-dragging savages? Glad you cleared that up, John.

Sabres in Five

Yeah.



Michelle Malkin Does 10-year-old-Cheerleader Back Yard Porn

Hide the children.

G.W.H.A.T.? Part II

After McCain's trip to Jon Stewart's place I had to repost this.

Short version: Why in God's name would the terrorists have to wait until we left Iraq to "follow us home"? We're right frigging here!

Anyway, here's the longer version from April 7:

One of the many arguments pushed especially by Dick Cheney and of course by George Bush and of course again by the rivulets of their pissing contest in the Right Wing Blogo- and Radio-sphere (and the Washington Post) is that "If we leave Iraq before the glorious victory we see so clearly in our minds in Technicolor™ then The Enemy Will Follow Us Home."

Uh. Why would that have to "follow us home"? Do they mean like the way they'd follow the guy in the '73 Ranchero home from the fight in the parking lot of the local strip joint? Does anybody really need to follow anybody home to America? I mean it's a big place. Lots of people know about it. And there's maps and everything that show America. Right there next to Cuba. (And Lord knows the terrorists all know where Cuba is.)

That argument is resoundingly silly. If they wanted to hit us here, wouldn't it be easier while we're...over there? Do they think we're in a sword fight? As long as they keep slashing wildly at the lone bad guy then he won't be able to get to the fair maiden and slash off her bodice and have her way with her?

They keep telling us it's a G.W.O.T., a "Global War on Terror," trying to convince us there are nuclear-suitcase carrying terrorists on every street corner from Flint to Taipei. At the same time they say, "We can't leave Iraq - 'cause The Enemy Will Follow Us Home." That just doesn't make sense. Really, it doesn't. Think about it.

Oh look. Somebody smarter than me said the same thing.

H/T.

Monica Goodling Granted Immunity, Subpoena Coming

Tick tick tick...

John Hinderaker is the F**king Stupidest Guy on the Face of the Earth

Douglas Feith, back to your seat.

Hinderaker sums up the Pat Tillman story with one succinct and stupid-beyond-measure headline: Some Cover-up!

He then goes into such detailed and fine stupidity that the following paragraph should come with a warning label:

There is no question that the initial misreporting of the circumstances of Tillman's death was stupid and improper. The claim of a government conspiracy to cover up the facts, however, is ludicrous. If you read the fine print in the article linked above, you find that Tillman died on April 22, 2004. His family was told that the cause was friendly fire on May 29, 2004, barely a month later. The same day, the Army publicly announced that friendly fire was the apparent cause.


Holy crap, that's mindwrecking. "If you read the fine print" you'll find out... WTF? Oh my god, I don't even know how to start. Hinderaker read the fine print and found out that Pat Tillman was killed on April 22, 2004. Good job, John! Comprehension skills extraordinaire! Then he reads even deeper into the fine print and finds that his family was told "barely a month later!" - five weeks, but what the heck, right? it's just a dead guy - the true cause of Tillman's death. And - proof that there was no cover-up - the Army publicly announced that friendly fire was the apparent cause the same day.

Oh. Good. God. In. Tights.

I can't. I can't go on.

Pat Tillman and Jessica Lynch

Glenn Greenwald delivers the blow.

"There's no truth to any of those allegations."

Scott Bloch is the head of the Office of Special Counsel and, of course, in charge of the brand new investigation into Karl Rove's office. He was on CNN this morning. Here's my personal transcript of a section at Raw Story:

Roberts: You're also being looked at by the Office of Personnel Management for improper employment practices and allegations of intimidating workers. That gonna hamper your ability to investigate this?

Bloch: Not whatsoever. There's no truth to any of those allegations. We Look forward to the determination of that inquiry which has been going on for two years. I've never heard from anybody, uh, never been asked any questions. That simply has no bearing on this whatsoever.


Consider what just happened there: Bloch, the head of what anybody from any political leaning would say was a significant investigation of a White House office, is asked about the fact that he is currently under investigation himself by another federal agency and if that would hamper his investigation. And he says no, because "there's no truth to those allegations."

Everybody feel better?

Bloch gets to profess his innocence on national television, with nobody to say a word in opposition - and there are plenty of somebody's who would have volunteered, and that's supposed to make us, as citizens viewing an investigation from afar, trust that everything's okay? Bloch just saying, "Oh it's all lies"? Unbelievable. They may as well have Karl Rove himself heading the investigation.

And his statement that "I've never heard from anybody, uh, never been asked any questions" is just wrong. It may be true that he hasn't been questioned about the 2004 events since the investigation officially started in October, 2005, but he was questioned on the exact matter he's talking about by the Senate in May, 2005. He was, to be precise, questioned by the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight of Government Management in May, 2005. It was that hearing that got the ball rolling on this investigation.

Again - Scott J. Bloch can't, with public trust, head this investigation. He just can't.

Wednesday Roundabout

Moment of truth for the false gharial crocodile.

Halliburton already in planning mode.

Asked about investigations into child-molestation, rape, and murder, the man in charge of the investigation shrugged.

Any second now the VTech morality masters will be using this in an attempt to appear sane. It won't work.

Hot Scot on Scot action!

Wanna be a slimer? I've got contacts in Chignik.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Glenn Beck: Your Moral Compass on CNN

Yes, the man who thinks Hurricane Katrina victims are "scumbags", and, in the same program says he hates 9/11 victims' families, thereby giving evidence of his all-around good American value system, is now giving us lessons on the moral equivalency of withdrawal from Iraq...and slavery.

Leaving Iraq would be, the Glenn says, “America’s most shameful act of immorality since slavery." I'm thinking he's not adding his addition to CNN - Critically North of Nutziodlville - to that equation.

Are You a Linux Freak?

Then go here. Dave is, well, he's just a freak. But now he's a Linux freak.

David Halberstam via Glenn Greenwald

I'm too young for those eraly years and was too long disconnected from politics and news in general to know more than the name, but Greenwald educates me about David Halberstam, and about journalism.

An earlier post on DH from GG.

Scott J. Bloch Must Appoint Another Special Counsel [Updated x2]

Updated May 8, 2008, here.

As I just noted below, an official Karl Rove investigat
ion has begun. It's being run by Scott J. Bloch, the Special Counsel in charge of the Office of Special Counsel.

As noted in the L.A. Times story, Bloch will be heading an investigation into:

...the firing of at least one U.S. attorney, missing White House e-mails, and White House efforts to keep presidential appointees attuned to Republican political priorities...


Scott J. Bloch:

On June 26, 2003, President George W. Bush nominated Scott J. Bloch for the position of Special Counsel at the U.S. Office of Special Counsel. The U.S. Senate unanimously confirmed Mr. Bloch on December 9, 2003. On January 5, 2004, he was sworn in to serve a five-year term.


How can someone appointed by President Bush be trusted to investigate presidential appointees? He can't. Bloch must remove himself from this investigation and appoint an outside investigator/Special Counsel for this case.

Call your Members of Congress. Tell them to demand that Bloch step aside.

More on Scott Bloch.

UPDATE: This is rich: the investigator is already under investigation.

UPDATE II: More here.

Rove to be Investigated

Finally.

"The new investigation, which will examine the firing of at least one U.S. attorney, missing White House e-mails, and White House efforts to keep presidential appointees attuned to Republican political priorities, could create a substantial new problem for the Bush White House," Hamburger continues in the article.

Shark!

Hilarious video.



'Kryptonite' discovered in mine

That's the actual headline.

Blog di poco Thom

Ha. Someone used Google's "translate" feature to read this shite. The sig. line, in Italian:

“Ciao bambini. Benvenuto a terra. Fa caldo di estate e di freddo nell'inverno. Il relativo rotondo e bagnato ed ammucchiato. Alla parte esterna, bambini, avete ottenuto circa cento anni qui. Ci รจ soltanto una regola di che so, bambini--: Maledizione del dio, voi deve essere gentile.„ - Kurt Vonnegut, dio li benedice, il sig. Rosewater


Monday, April 23, 2007

Nine, Part II

More on the nine from Meteor Blades. Here too.

Nine

Nine

Power Line: Keep Gonzales 'Cuz, Uh, Yeah!

Read this and let me know if you're brain doesn't melt whilst:

The Senate Republicans have articulated the best reason I can think for why Alberto Gonzales should remain Attorney General. Until now, the best reason has been that there's no evidence that he did anything wrong in connection with the removal of the eight U.S. attorneys or much wrong in connection with anything else. That's not a bad justification, but it was undercut to some degree by the absence of any indication that Gonzales has done much right as Attorney General.

But now, according to Newsweek (per Captain's Quarters), Senate Republicans have told President Bush that Gonzales must go if the administration wants to see any progress on its legislative agenda, including immigration. In fact, the only part of Bush's legislative agenda that offers the promise of progress is immigration reform. And considering how much damage the administration, the congressional Democrats, and (yes) the Senate Republicans can accomplish through such reform, the prospect of stalling it has me rooting for Gonzales to stay.


To recap Power Line Paul's argument:

1) Keep Gonzales because there's no evidence except the humongous body of evidence that Gonzales did anything wrong

2) Keep Gonzales because there isn't "much wrong" with anything else he may have done

3) Latest "Keep Gonzales!" update: Keep Gonzales because he's the only hope of President Bush's one true accomplishment as president: Keeping Brown People out of America

Power Line: your source for logic...on PCP.

That's Capital "D" Dunces, Especially to You

One of the louder voices on the Megaphone of Hopelessness and Hate dares to cite John Kennedy Toole, who would have no doubt found her the 10th grade Prom Queen of the Confederacy.

Extra note: It's often heard that Toole wrote only on novel. It's not so. That one he wrote when he was sixteen.

Tom Watson on Kurt Vonnegut

Via Steve Gilliard, who's latest update is thankfully hopeful, a never-too-late ode to KVJr.

Serving Soldier Echoes Harry Reid

You can go back and forth showing military members with opposing views on the war, rendering it basically meaningless, but given the amount of smearing being done to Harry Reid lately, this is worth listening to.

President Bush to get Purple Heart [Updated]

No, that isn't the start of a joke. Oh wait, yes it is:

UPDATE: Hey! This is fun, but look over there! The long-needed investigation of Karl Rove has begun—but it needs a new chief investigator. I mean really!

Now back to the Purple Heart of Darkness.

History will be made today when Copperas Cove resident Bill Thomas and his wife, Georgia, present President George W. Bush with a Purple Heart at the Oval Office.

Thomas said he and his wife came up with the unprecedented idea to present the president with the Purple Heart over breakfast one morning a few months ago as they discussed the verbal attacks, both foreign and domestic, the commander in chief has withstood during his time in office.


Yeah, history's being made alright. Of the hammer-my-brain-to-mush-with-a-ten-pound-sledgehammer variety.

This is the latest strawberry on top of the Unendingly-Absurd Ridiculousnesses Regarding President George W. Bush Toxic Strawberry Sundae. Possibly rendering it the most absurd thing to ever exist in - or out - of this or any other possible alternate universe.

Now I want my Purple Heart for reading that story. My sense of reality is scarred for life.

"Is Shaha Riza a Spy?"

Wow. Steve Clemons up to bat on the "extraordinary, even unprecedented" security clearance of Paul Wolfowitz's girlfriend. [The second link, to Salon, diverts to the present home page. the first one, to Clemons, has plenty to say on this.]

How to Redploy

Great post and points on sensible withdrawal and redeployment by Matthew Yglesias via Newshoggers and The Sideshow.

Great - and depressing. One has to wonder if this mess must go on until we get a Dem president in 2009. That's really depressing. (One has to then wonder about impeachment...)

Holding the Troops Hostage

The rallying call "Support the Troops" has always at its base been the lowest kind of political weaseling. Rather than make an argument on the war on its merits or lack thereof, many, many war supporters regularly use members of the military as human shields, daring war critics to "fire" at them while they stand behind men and women who are not only thousands of miles away but who have no say whatsoever in whether or not they go to war. It is a particularly inhuman kind of hypocrisy, and it highlights how little actual argument they have in support of the war.

Paul Krugman sums up how that argument is being used by the Bush administration and its supporters in an even more twisted way today (here - subscription required):

There are two ways to describe the confrontation between Congress and the Bush administration over funding for the Iraq surge. You can pretend that it’s a normal political dispute. Or you can see it for what it really is: a hostage situation, in which a beleaguered President Bush, barricaded in the White House, is threatening dire consequences for innocent bystanders — the troops — if his demands aren’t met.


That's a perfect description. Bush and Cheney and the rest of them are the bungling bank robbers who had the "Perfect Plan" (it'll be over in weeks; we'll be greeted as liberators; the oil will pay for the war...) but now, exposed as the bungling half-wits they are, they're in a standoff, surrounded and holding the tellers and customers hostage. It's a sad spectacle to witness, and hopefully we never see the office of the executive stoop to such levels again in our lifetimes.

How does it end?

If this were a normal political dispute, Democrats in Congress would clearly hold the upper hand: by a huge margin, Americans say they want a timetable for withdrawal, and by a large margin they also say they trust Congress, not Mr. Bush, to do a better job handling the situation in Iraq.

But this isn’t a normal political dispute. Mr. Bush isn’t really trying to win the argument on the merits. He’s just betting that the people outside the barricade care more than he does about the fate of those innocent bystanders.


Every time you hear someone say "Support the Troops" while arguing to keep this debacle going into the undetermined future - possibly forever - describe this scenario to them. And ask them why they're helping the bungling bank robbers and hostage takers. (It probably won't do anything, but what the hell?)

If you have a couple minutes, you can make a quick and simple phone call or two or more to your representatives. Remind them how you feel about timetables.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Infant Death Rates Rise in South

Our America today.

HOLLANDALE, Miss. — For decades, Mississippi and neighboring states with large black populations and expanses of enduring poverty made steady progress in reducing infant death. But, in what health experts call an ominous portent, progress has stalled and in recent years the death rate has risen in Mississippi and several other states.


Why? Here's one reason:

In 2004, Gov. Haley Barbour came to office promising not to raise taxes and to cut Medicaid. Face-to-face meetings were required for annual re-enrollment in Medicaid and CHIP, the children’s health insurance program; locations and hours for enrollment changed, and documentation requirements became more stringent.


Saturday, April 21, 2007

Reason # 5,894 Not to Vote Republican

Because the Republican Party has been taken over by droogs like this:

From US Army Reserves Colonel (Retired) Ann Wright:

At that point, I had had enough of Rohrabacher. I stood up and said "I did not serve 29 years in the US military and 16 years in the US diplomatic corps to see demise of the rule of law and violation of our own laws."


Some day, maybe 10 or 15 years from now, the Republican Party will have weaned itself of the awful drugs that its leaders have succumbed to. Until then, you owe it to good sober Americans to vote for Democratic senators, representatives, and presidents. It's the decent thing to do.

In case you need more info on Republican Dana Rohrabacher, here's some on his trip into crazy land.

Muslim Terrorists Down Blue Angel

Think that's crass? Me too. But don't be surprised if somebody says exactly that about this tragedy.

Cannibals

Proving again that truth is no substitute for blind loyalty, Bush Republicans go after one-time Supreme Allied Commander Atlantic for NATO, and Commander-in-Chief for the U.S. Atlantic Command, retired Marine Corps General John J. Sheehan.

Why? Because he refused to accept the position of "War Czar" offered to him by the White House. And he dared to publicly say why.

As Sheehan points out - if he was such a "Liberal" and "defeatist," not to mention "a past association with Defense Intelligence Agency analyst Ana Belen Montes, who in 2002 was convicted as one of the most notorious U.S. traitors and a damaging spy for the communist regime in Cuba," - why in the hell did the White House ask him to be War Czar?

Cannibals. Worse: Cowardly, backstabbing, infantile, soulless, and just plain stupid cannibals.

Chris Smither

Intelligent Design on Youtube.



Go see him.

Gun Should Not Have Been Sold

Updating this post, federal law says that the Virginia Tech killer should not have been able to buy a gun.

Damn.

That should - but it probably won't - put the focus of this story back on the availablity of guns, and on mental health, and take it off the dribblings of sociopaths.

"...the war is lost."

Context is important. Here's what Harry Reid said on April 19 that has caused such an outcry:

I believe myself that the secretary of state, secretary of defense and - you have to make your own decisions as to what the president knows - (know) this war is lost and the surge is not accomplishing anything as indicated by the extreme violence in Iraq yesterday.


You can call that putting his foot in his mouth if you like, but Reid's been clear and consistent about this. Nine days earlier - nine days earlier - Reid spoke on the Senate floor and said this:

Virtually all the experts -- military and civilian -- agree that the war cannot be won militarily. Success can only come when all the political leaders in Iraq reach a settlement.


Kinda puts the "war is lost" thing in a different light, doesn't it? And note that it caused no outcry at the time. Reid and Murtha and anybody with guts and brains have been saying this for a very long time.

On April 19, Reid followed up his initial remarks:

As long as we follow the president's path in Iraq, the war is lost. But there is still a chance to change course -- and we must change course.


And later:

The war can only be won diplomatically, politically and economically, and the president needs to come to that realization.


There's nothing inconsistent about any of that. The war - virtually all the experts agree - is lost as Bush is fighting it. Who can argue with that? Even Republicans regularly call it a debacle of the worst kind.

Reid's right.

They'd Smear God

I swear, if God itself came down from the lofts and said, to everyone on Earth, "There were no WMDs in Iraq!" some people would still say there were. They'd say God was a Lefty coward.

Limbaugh sees the light!

Rush Limbaugh:

It seems, every time there’s a public demand for somebody to resign in Washington, it’s always a Republican!


Public demand. Got that?

This isn't more of your Blame America First, is it?

On the Radio, Amato's Radio

John Amato of Crooks and Liars unloads on the cowards.

Doolittle Won't Resign

At least not yet, anyway.

I say "Good." It'll keep you and Abramoff and Republican corruption on the front page longer. Thanks, Congressman.

Here's to You, Mr. Internet Tube Man

Sen. Ted Stevens (R-UNUTS?) has eclipsed the record for the longest-serving Republican senator in history.

Congratulations, Senator Stevens. Really. May your retirement, soon, I'm sure - totally absolutely 100% please God in Heaven let it be so - is well deserved. May you enjoy it for many years.

Next Time I Get Pulled Over

... and a cop asks me, "Do you know how fast you were going?" I'm going to say, "I can't comment on an ongoing investigation," and drive off.

Just a thought.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Buying the War

Even reading about this upcoming Bill Moyer's documentary is chilling. Wait until it comes on - THIS WEDNESDAY.

Did you hear that? THIS WEDNESDAY you can see Bill Moyers' new documentary about the sick, twisted, gutless thing that was the American press in the run up to the Iraq War. Check your local listings.

Is Bill O'Reilly Possessed by the Devil?

“Based on what I’ve seen in the news,", a viewer said in an interview, "there’s no doubt that this act was Satanic in origin."



Martin Sexton, Backstage

If you've never heard him, find him. Really. Video below.



"Whom Do I Shoot?"

A great post - by a gun owner - about the "If only the students had guns" buzz going around (Via).

There you are, in school (work, on the street, the grocery, at the beach, whatever) and someone pulls a gun and starts shooting. What do you do?

Captain Frogbert's diary :: ::
You pull your gun, of course, shoot the guy and you're a HERO! Yay!

Second scenario: There you are when you hear gunshots. You pull your gun and turn to look for a target. Wait! There are two guys with guns and they seem to be shooting at each other! Whom do you shoot?

Third scenario: You turn, gun in hand, looking for a target and there are five people, men, women, black, white, hispanic, all shooting at or towards each other. It's a fire fight! Whom do you shoot?

Fourth scenario: Some other guy is drawing a bead on some guy with a gun and that guy happens to be YOU because he doesn't know who the bad guy is either. Who gets shot?


Yep. Would have solved everything if a bunch of people in the school had guns.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

It's So Unfair to Gonzales

Ruben Navarrette has a column up at CNN, Navarrette: Will Gonzales get a fair hearing?:

In an op-ed Sunday for The Washington Post, Gonzales admitted that he had "created confusion" with recent statements about the firings but insisted, "nothing improper occurred."

He wrote that he directed his former deputy chief of staff Kyle Sampson to initiate the process, that he knew it was occurring and that he approved the final recommendations -- but "did not make decisions about who should or should not be asked to resign."

That won't satisfy the critics. Nothing will, absent Gonzales' head. To get it, they keep changing their line of attack.


In fairness, Mr. Navarrette, noting that Gonzales wrote, and testified, that he "did not make decisions about who should or should not be asked to resign," and not noting, anywhere in the column, that that has been proven to be false - a "lie" even - is what we in the real world call an "unfair" assessment of the facts. On CNN no less.

Unfair and just dumb. But we've come to expect that.

Another Corrupt Bush Appointee Going Down

Quick, someone call Christopher Hitchens and Fox News, a serious injustice is about to be done to someone who "did nothing wrong!":

When Mr Wolfowitz asked a meeting of senior staff yesterday what he could do to repair faith in his leadership, he was told bluntly to resign by Graeme Wheeler, a managing director of the bank and one of two deputies to the president.


"I Know More...And the Truth is Worse"

Somebody I'd never heard of, Kevin Ring, resigned abruptly yesterday from Indianapolis-based law firm Barnes & Thornburg. And that ain't good for someone I have heard of - Rep. John Doolittle. King is a former aide to Doolittle, who, coincidentally, had his home raided by the FBI yesterday. King is also a former employee of Jack Abramoff.

It looks possible, says TPM Muckraker, that King is now singing a song to the FBI. That's what former aides to about-to-go-under Republican congressmen, who were also former allies to Jack Abramoff, who also happened to work at Indianapolis-based law firm Barnes & Thornburg before they resigned abruptly - do.

And what could King be saying?

Dengre digs up an email Mr. Ring wrote to a friend in 2004:

I know more than the article and the truth is worse.


The article in question (top of the list of several) was about...the Abramoff scandal.

More on Doolittle here. More on King here.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Tell the Kids: You're Doomed

The Bush/Cheney Leave No Child Behind Your Vision of Eternally-Soiled Trousers mission sails on.

I'd say more, but I'm having a differently-soiled-trouser experience with someone tonight. Venture on without me, children, venture on.

Jefferson Aide Subpoenaed

Rep. William Jefferson, that is. (Via)

According to the FBI he was videotaped taking $100,000 from a wired investor. WTF?

"They DID Fight Back"

Another kick in the fantasy teeth of the lowest of the low, via Meteor Blades.

"Thanks to you I die like Jesus Christ..."

Can the people trying to find a Muslim terrorist connection to the Virginia Tech murders please shut up now?

Please? And maybe an apology...

Her and Her Boy's Loss to Cancer in 20 Photos

A bit close to home for me, so many others, I know. If you don't want to sob right now, don't go here. But do at some point. It is life at its very highest, there with its most painful.


(Via)

Supreme Court: Some Pregnant Women Must Die

Someone's gotta explain to me how today's Supreme Court ruling prohibiting partial-birth abortion - even in cases when it's to save the mother's life - is not, at least in some cases, a Court-sanctioned death sentence for women guilty of being pregnant and suffering a catastrophic illness or injury in the meantime. It's beyond understanding.

Will a ban on any surgery while guilty of being pregnant be next? Because sometimes fetuses die during surgery on pregnant mothers. They do.

Fed. Law Forbids Gun Sales to the Mentally Ill

This report from Common Dreams mentions that federal law prohibits the sale of guns to people with a history of mental illness.

The report they cite from the federal Government Accountability Office says it clearly:

Under federal law, persons are prohibited from receiving a firearm if they (1) if they have been convicted of, or are under indictment for, a felony; (2) are a fugitive from justice; (3) are unlawful drug uses or are addicted to a controlled substance; (4) have been involuntarily committed to a mental institution or judged to be mentally defective...


Involuntarily committed? Really, really hard news if so, and even if not - that someone with a history like his could so easily get a gun is going to be hard for even the most ardent firearm supporters to defend. But I suppose they'll try. More from CNN.

2BR02B

Vonnegut podcast tribute.

We present a tribute to Kurt Vonnegut. He passed away on April 11th, and is one of the most important writers of the 20th century.

We present an unabridged audio version of his short story, 2BR02B. Originally published in the January, 1962 issue of If.

Our guest reader is William Coelius. Thanks for the great reading, William!

And thank you for listening!

Worst People in the World [Updated]

And those kids you mock - are really dead.

And another one.

The faces of the 32 murdered being questioned or derided or flat out being called cowards in the ever-revealing Right Wing blogosphere.

** A good response.

UPDATE: Hey, everybody searching for how Muslim the killer was: Thanks to you I die like Jesus Christ..."

I wonder what they'll say now.

Hitchens Clears Wolfowitz, Channels Sesame Street

Christopher Hitchens says Wolfowitz did nothing wrong. It all seems to make sense, and is even righteous in an almost gentlemanly way, until his final paragraph:

Aha, you say, but why did Wolfowitz take so long to release these nonincriminating [see first link again] internal memoranda? Who acts so defensively if they have nothing to hide? I have no private information to impart here. But it could be that two grown-up people, both with previous marriages and with growing children, did not feel much like undergoing yet another round of "disclosure." For the sake of apparent propriety, they had already had to submit to some rather exorbitant demands. That's just my guess. But I didn't choose to say anything until I had seen the relevant papers, which are clear and conclusive.


• "I have no private information..."
• "But it could be that..."
• "That's just my guess..."
• "...clear and conclusive."

All the children sing: "One of these things is not like the other, one of these things just doesn't belong..."

Hitchens admission that he doesn't know what he's talking about on his way to a "clear and conclusive" conclusion aside, notice that he doesn't mention what those "nonincriminating" documents showed: that Wolfowitz lied. Add to that what he lied about: his "noninvolvement" in his girlfriend's raise. How do you leave that out? You don't, unless you're Christopher Hitchens, apparently.

Oh yeah, how do you leave out the fact that Wolfowitz admitted wrongdoing, albeit calling it a "mistake" rather than a misuse of his posittion and a lie about it afterwards? You don't, unless..

He also doesn't mention this business. "Nonincriminating," I guess.

Wednesday Roundabout

SecDef Gates contradicts Bush and Cheney. McCain contradicts self. From here.

Cuba policy and news coming on Paul Wolfowitz's past, from Steve Clemons.

Carpetbagger on the imaginary heroes of the Rightwing blogosphere.

Upcoming documentary: Taxi to the Dark Side.

O'Reilly's Secret Police are coming again.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Islamofascist Abortion Doctor Murderer Exposed

These really astute people, and others, have reminded me of something that I had stupidly and narrow-mindedly passed over at the time:

Abortion doctor killer James Charles Kopp was a Muslim!


It's now so overly totally obvious when you look back at the details. Details formerly passed by about the supposed "Christian" terrorist:

• Look at the name: James Charles Kopp. Notice the initials? J-C-K? Jesus Christ Killer. No - not the Jews (though I won't let them off the hook completely). It was the Muslims who killed Christ. There is direct evidence that the descendants of the people who killed Jesus later became Muslims. Everybody knows this.

• Ever notive how "James" sounds a lot like "Jamaal"? Or how "Charles" and "Islhamic" (totally correct spelling) have a lot of the same letters? Six - to be exact? Or how there's a COPtic (read: KOPPtic) "Christian" church...based in the - wait for it - the Middle East? Yeah, right, they're Christians.

• The name "Hollie Kopp" name comes up on a Google search on an entry titled "Muslims in America" on the U.S. Embassy in Thailand (known Islamofascist terror breeding ground along with every country on Earth) Web site.

Proof enough? Not for Dhimmocrats. I've got more.

• The most damning evidence: James Kopp and Osama bin Laden were on the FBI's Most Wanted List at the Same Exact Time. Coincidence? I don't think so.

I could go on, but I think it's pretty clear. We have been up against an ISLAMO-FASCISTIC-JIHADO-TERRORISMO-TOTAL-WAR worldwide movement to make us all crap our pants for some time now. Better get used to it.

I know I am.

Medical Supply Chain v. Novation LLC, et al.

I wrote about this last week (in several posts after that also). It is more than a little curious to me that this isn't a bigger news story. It has all the elements you'd think writers and editors would latch on to:

Great ideas that would save lives and money

• Huge corporations allegedly squashing those great ideas because they'd lose money if they went through

• Use of the ever-controversial USA Patriot Act by a mega-bank to help in the squashing

• One of the guys with one of the great ideas fights back with a gigantic lawsuit against said mega-corporations

• Throw in Medicare fraud investigations against the bad guys - and a (perhaps tenuous) connection to the USAtty scandal

What more could editors want? Even taking away the USAtty thing (the owner of the company involved could be trying to get publicity - I have no idea), the lawsuit is real and apparently ongoing.

Here's a press release dated yesterday from the guy initiating the lawsuit, saying Gonzales is sandbagging investigations into the bad guys.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Oh Kurt

So long, old pal.



This image of Kurt Vonnegut is one I cut out of a shopping bag, I can't remember where, years ago and put in a frame. It's lived in the vicinity of my desk ever since.

More Plame Charges Coming?

Developing on Raw Story: More "obstruction" charges coming related to missing emails.

Could be the USAtty story, but it could be something else...

"What Did Clinton’s CIA Know About 9-11?"

That's the actual headline. Really. That'd be a blogger blogging about this.

Crystal balls in the CIA joke possibilties aside, look at this, just for the laughs. And this here's a big ol' knee-slapper too.

...inherent dignity...

Via Correntewire [link fixed], a must read at Booman Tribune.


Let's Impeach the President

Hey, remember this one?



Iraq Forever

Glenn Greenwald:

Thus, the Kagan/Kristol/Krauthammer war propagandists continue to say whatever they have to say in order to find a way to stay in Iraq forever. Our Serious Beltway pundits continue to embrace that reasoning because staying is the only way to avoid the reality of how wrong they were.


That's exacly right, and add Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rove, and all the others getting this propagandizing done for them. Leaving Iraq is "cowardly," it's "losing," it's "capitulation to the worst enemy ever," it's "bad for Iraqis," it's "bad for Muslims," it's "bad for the economy," it "sends the wrong message to the troops" even talking about it, it's bad bad bad bad bad... The truth is, it's bad for them. They have nothing left when they don't have this war. This war or another one. It's the only bit of government potential that actually interests them. Actually doing the business of simply running a country is like dishwashing to them, and is the reason they never belonged in governement in the first place.

The rest of the quote:

And the disconnect between what Americans want and think, and what our government (and the "small but powerful" faction that controls it) does, continues to grow without any end in sight. On the most crucial issues faced by this country, nothing matters less to the Kagans and the Fred Hiatts (and, increasingly, to many disturbingly tepid Congressional Democrats) than the views of Americans. Within that disconnect lies most of the sicknesses ailing our political culture.


Sunday, April 15, 2007

Nutzoidznik

Like I said, nutzoidznik.

The Eagle Cam

Watch an eagle.

Poem of the Week: Rumi

From Poem of the Week, whose byline reads:

Larry Birkhead or Howard K. Stern

The identity of this week's PW Editor is still in doubt, and two men are claiming it's their rightful title.


Hoot. Okay, the poem:

When grapes turn
To wine, they long for our ability to change.

When stars wheel
Around the North Pole,
They are longing for our growing consciousness.

Wine got drunk with us,
Not the other way.
The body developed out of us, not we from it.

We are bees,
And our body is a honeycomb.
We made
The body, cell by cell we made it.


Gonzales' Mush Mouth [Updated]

Who says things like this?

I know that I did not -- and would not -- ask for the resignation of any U.S. attorney for an improper reason.


"I know that I did not," spoken by someone free of fear or guilt, comes out as "I did not."

"I know that I did not" is mealy-mouthed guiltyese for, "I'm not going to say that I didn't do it because if you find later that I did do it then you can add "Liar" to the charges against me. If you do find out, I'll just say I mis-knew the facts at this time."

Alberto, you're lying. Everybody knows it. You're kids will know it some day. That's just wrong.

UPDATE: A fuller dissection of the mush by a trial laywer.

Aloha, Ho

Ho

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Fox News Clears Wolfowitz [Updated]

Yes folks, embattled World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz is breathing a sigh of relief today, now that investigators from Fox News have dug through More Than 100 Pages! of documents:

But FOX News has analyzed more than 100 pages of internal bank documents dating to 2005 that paint a far more complex portrait of the case – and suggests that the bank’s own ethics committee had known the terms of the settlement with Riza for at least a year.


Step back, folks - it's complicated. Let Fox News handle this. You see, everything's okay now because no matter the right or wrong of what Wolfowitz did - it's okay because, according to Fox News, the bank's ethics committee knew about it. I know what you're thinking: That would be like saying that if Wolfowitz had used bank money to pay 80 hookers to be his personal live-in tiddly-winkers it would be okay...as long as the bank's ethics committee knew about it.

Well, yes, that is what they're saying. Fox News. Moving right along:

The documents show that while Wolfowitz did indeed dictate the lucrative terms of Riza’s salary to the bank’s human resources chief, he also took steps to try and determine if what he was doing was right – seemingly trying to navigate his way through an arcane bureaucracy with a maze of unusual rules and procedures.


No! Don't read it again! You read it right the first time! Wolfowitz tried and tried and worked his whole little brain off trying to figure out if it was right and good that his girlfriend get a raise for not being at work anymore.* Like we said folks - it's complicated.

And: "Wolfowitz did indeed dictate the lucrative terms of Riza’s salary to the bank’s human resources chief..." Never mind that Wolfowitz said he had nothing to do with her salary when the story first broke, before admitting that he indeed did when it became apparent that he, yes, indeed did. Never mind that HE LIED. Fox News read More Than 100 Pages! of documents - and lying doesn't matter when Fox News reads that many documents. (It's complicated.)

And never mind that Wolfowitz apologized for his lies lies lies "mistake," showing that, at least in his mind, if not in the dried peanuts minds of Fox News investigators, he had done something wrong - he can takesy-backsy the apology now that Fox News has cleared him. That's how the Fox News works. It unlies lies and unsorries apologies for kings, crooks, and clowns everywhere.

* UPDATE: Referring to the asterisk where I wrote "...get a raise for not being at work anymore," go here.


Tiny URL

Cool new tool I found at Steve Clemons' site.

Are you sick of posting URLs in emails only to have it break when sent causing the recipient to have to cut and paste it back together? Then you've come to the right place. By entering in a URL in the text field below, we will create a tiny URL that will not break in email postings and never expires.


The Foundation for Screwing Us Again

Haven't they done it to us enough? Of course not.

In today's version of "How They Screw Us in a New Way Every Day": You and I gave $35 million to a "foundation" that doesn't seem to exist. Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgh.

I hate these people.

Sunday Stories [Updated]

German Army instructor tells recruits to imagine American blacks when firing.

Swindling, lying World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz is another corrupt Bush appointee. That's the story.

CREW writes Patrick Fitzgerald: Reopen Plame case in light of Rove's missing emails.

White House edit of opening statement (scroll down) of Gonzales aide to House Judiciary subcommittee raises questions at Think Progress.

"Big News" at TPM: One U.S. Attorney may have saved his ass, cooked his goose. UPDATE: May be a bit smaller. And more, and more about Dem. and former Wisconsin AG. who worked the case and supports it.

Sabres!



Game two tonight.

Friday, April 13, 2007

NPR: Plan to Fire All 93 USAt.s was Rove's

The report says that it was Rove's plan to fire all 93 "as a way to get political cover for firing the small number of U.S. attorneys the White House actually wanted to get rid of."

NPR now has new information about that plan. According to someone who's had conversations with White House officials, the plan to fire all 93 U.S. attorneys originated with political adviser Karl Rove. It was seen as a way to get political cover for firing the small number of U.S. attorneys the White House actually wanted to get rid of. Documents show the plan was eventually dismissed as impractical.


Note that it doesn't say that it was Rove's plan to fire the "small number" of U.S. attorneys, but it was his to plan to "provide cover" for the plan. So it still leaves him a tiny out on that. But still. It shows him in the inner workings of the plan. And - it's a pretty nefarious plan, no matter what way you look at it.

Now we just ot get the - our - emails about it.