Sunday, August 31, 2008
The White House released a series of photos showing Bush calling all the gulf state governors to show....ummm....to show that the oval office has an old-style telephone, I guess.
Notice that the weird red folder says "CLASSIFIED." Aren't you impressed?
Saturday, August 30, 2008
A few hours ago, the news broke that Alaska Governor Sarah Palin has been selected by Sen. John McCain as the vice presidential candidate for the Republican ticket.Thanks for your continued support,
As a Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund supporter, you are no doubt aware of Governor Palin's dismal record, from her staunch support for special interests and Big Oil to her terrible assault on wolves and other wildlife.
As much of the nation wonders just who Sarah Palin is, I wanted to pass along my statement that I've just released.
Please read it and pass it along to everyone you know.
RodgerFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 29, 2008
Shocking Choice by John McCain
WASHINGTON-- Senator John McCain just announced his choice for running mate: Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska. To follow is a statement by Rodger Schlickeisen, president of Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund.
Senator McCain's choice for a running mate is beyond belief. By choosing Sarah Palin, McCain has clearly made a decision to continue the Bush legacy of destructive environmental policies.
Sarah Palin, whose husband works for BP (formerly British Petroleum), has repeatedly put special interests first when it comes to the environment. In her scant two years as governor, she has lobbied aggressively to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling, pushed for more drilling off of Alaska's coasts, and put special interests above science. Ms. Palin has made it clear through her actions that she is unwilling to do even as much as the Bush administration to address the impacts of global warming. Her most recent effort has been to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to remove the polar bear from the endangered species list, putting Big Oil before sound science. As unbelievable as this may sound, this actually puts her to the right of the Bush administration.
This is Senator McCain's first significant choice in building his executive team and its a bad one. It has to raise serious doubts in the minds of voters about John McCain's commitment to conservation, to addressing the impacts of global warming and to ensuring our country ends its dependency on oil.
##The Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund (www.defendersactionfund.org) provides a powerful voice in Washington to Americans who value our conservation heritage. Through grassroots lobbying, issue advocacy and political campaigns, the Action Fund champions those laws and lawmakers that protect wildlife and wild places while working against those that do them harm.
DENVER -- Though it was high in shock value, the Palin pick left bruised feelings among the short-list contenders who were not picked - and infuriated some Republican officials who privately said McCain had gone out on a limb, unnecessarily, without laying the groundwork for such an unknown. Two senior Republican officials close to Mitt Romney and Tim
Pawlenty said they had both been rudely strung along and now "feel manipulated."
"They now know that they were used as decoys, well after McCain had decided not to pick them," one Republican involved in the process said.
That was quick. This morning, an ad from Sarah Palin's 2006 gubernatorial campaign featuring an endorsement from scandal-plagued Alaska Senator Ted Stevens was available on Palin's campaign Web site. But now the Stevens ad has already been scrubbed. The link is no longer on her campaign site.
"I think he's [Todd Palin, Sarah Palin's husband} emotionally committed in trying to see that his former brother-in-law is punished."
Friday, August 29, 2008
With all due respect again to Governor Kaine, he’s been a governor for three years, he’s been able but undistinguished. I don’t think people could really name a big, important thing that he’s done. He was mayor of the 105th largest city in America. And again, with all due respect to Richmond, Virginia, it’s smaller than Chula Vista, California; Aurora, Colorado; Mesa or Gilbert, Arizona; north Las Vegas or Henderson, Nevada. It’s not a big town. So if he were to pick Governor Kaine, it would be an intensely political choice where he said, `You know what? I’m really not, first and foremost, concerned with, is this person capable of being president of the United States?
NEW YORK - Barack Obama's acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention was seen by more than 38 million people.
Nielsen Media Research said more people watched Obama speak than watched the Olympics opening ceremony in Beijing, the final "American Idol" or the Academy Awards this year. Obama talked before a live audience of 80,000 people in Denver.
His TV audience nearly doubled the amount of people who watched John Kerry accept the Democratic nomination to run against President Bush four years ago. Kerry's speech was seen by just over 20 million people.
It's very very good when people actually see what Obama says instead of being told by the gasbags what he meant.
Gov. Sarah Palin on Wednesday revealed an audio recording that shows an aide pressuring the Public Safety Department to fire a state trooper embroiled in a custody battle with her sister.
It strikes me as a rather risky pick. In fact, when this came out, I had assumed that it meant she was out of the running.
These are the policies I will pursue. And in the weeks ahead, I look forward to debating them with John McCain.
But what I will not do is suggest that the Senator takes his positions for political purposes. Because one of the things that we have to change in our politics is the idea that people cannot disagree without challenging each others character and patriotism.
The times are too serious, the stakes are too high for this same partisan playbook. So let us agree that patriotism has no party. I love this country, and so do you, and so does John McCain. The men and women who serve in our battlefields may be Democrats and Republicans and Independents, but they have fought together and bled together and some died together under the same proud flag. They have not served a Red America or a Blue America - they have served the United States of America.
So I’ve got news for you, John McCain. We all put our country first.
America, our work will not be easy. The challenges we face require tough choices, and Democrats as well as Republicans will need to cast off the worn-out ideas and politics of the past. For part of what has been lost these past eight years can’t just be measured by lost wages or bigger trade deficits. What has also been lost is our sense of common purpose - our sense of higher purpose. And that’s what we have to restore.
We may not agree on abortion, but surely we can agree on reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies in this country. The reality of gun ownership may be different for hunters in rural Ohio than for those plagued by gang-violence in Cleveland, but don’t tell me we can’t uphold the Second Amendment while keeping AK-47s out of the hands of criminals. I know there are differences on same-sex marriage, but surely we can agree that our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters deserve to visit the person they love in the hospital and to live lives free of discrimination. Passions fly on immigration, but I don’t know anyone who benefits when a mother is separated from her infant child or an employer undercuts American wages by hiring illegal workers. This too is part of America’s promise - the promise of a democracy where we can find the strength and grace to bridge divides and unite in common effort.
I know there are those who dismiss such beliefs as happy talk. They claim that our insistence on something larger, something firmer and more honest in our public life is just a Trojan Horse for higher taxes and the abandonment of traditional values. And that’s to be expected. Because if you don’t have any fresh ideas, then you use stale tactics to scare the voters. If you don’t have a record to run on, then you paint your opponent as someone people should run from.
You make a big election about small things.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
“Four years ago, I stood before you and told you my story – of the brief union between a young man from Kenya and a young woman from Kansas who weren’t well-off or well-known, but shared a belief that in America, their son could achieve whatever he put his mind to.
“It is that promise that has always set this country apart – that through hard work and sacrifice, each of us can pursue our individual dreams but still come together as one American family, to ensure that the next generation can pursue their dreams as well.
“It is why I stand here tonight. Because for two hundred and thirty two years, at each moment when that promise was in jeopardy, ordinary men and women – students and soldiers, farmers and teachers, nurses and janitors -- found the courage to keep it alive.
“We meet at one of those defining moments – a moment when our nation is at war, our economy is in turmoil, and the American promise has been threatened once more.
“Tonight, more Americans are out of work and more are working harder for less. More of you have lost your homes and more are watching your home values plummet. More of you have cars you can’t afford to drive, credit card bills you can’t afford to pay and tuition that is beyond your reach
“These challenges are not all of government’s making. But the failure to respond is a direct result of a broken politics in Washington and the failed presidency of George W. Bush.
“America, we are better than these last eight years. We are a better country than this.”
“This moment – this election – is our chance to keep, in the 21st century, the American promise alive. Because next week, in Minnesota, the same party that brought you two terms of George Bush and Dick Cheney will ask this country for a third. And we are here because we love this country too much to let the next four years look just like the last eight. On November 4th, we must stand up and say: “Eight is enough.”
“Now let there be no doubt. The Republican nominee, John McCain, has worn the uniform of our country with bravery and distinction, and for that we owe him our gratitude and respect. And next week, we’ll also hear about those occasions when he’s broken with his party as evidence that he can deliver the change that we need.
“But the record’s clear: John McCain has voted with George Bush ninety percent of the time. Senator McCain likes to talk about judgment, but really, what does it say about your judgment when you think George Bush was right more than ninety percent of the time? I don’t know about you, but I’m not ready to take a ten percent chance on change.”
“You see, we Democrats have a very different measure of what constitutes progress in this country.
“We measure progress by how many people can find a job that pays the mortgage; whether you can put away a little extra money at the end of each month so that you can someday watch your child receive her diploma. We measure progress in the 23 million new jobs that were created when Bill Clinton was President – when the average American family saw its income go up $7,500 instead of down $2,000 like it has under George Bush.
“We measure the strength of our economy not by the number of billionaires we have or the profits of the Fortune 500, but by whether someone with a good idea can take a risk and start a business, or whether the waitress who lives on tips can take a day off to look after a sick kid without losing her job – an economy that honors the dignity of work.
“The fundamentals we use to measure economic strength are whether we are living up to that fundamental promise that has made this country great – a promise that is the only reason I am standing here tonight.”
“That’s the promise we need to keep. That’s the change we need right now. So let me spell out exactly what that change would mean if I am President.
“Change means a tax code that doesn’t reward the lobbyists who wrote it, but the American workers and small businesses who deserve it.
“Unlike John McCain, I will stop giving tax breaks to corporations that ship our jobs overseas, and I will start giving them to companies that create good jobs right here in America.
“I will eliminate capital gains taxes for the small businesses and the start-ups that will create the high-wage, high-tech jobs of tomorrow.
“I will cut taxes – cut taxes – for 95% of all working families. Because in an economy like this, the last thing we should do is raise taxes on the middle-class.
“And for the sake of our economy, our security, and the future of our planet, I will set a clear goal as President: in ten years, we will finally end our dependence on oil from the Middle East.
“Washington has been talking about our oil addiction for the last thirty years, and John McCain has been there for twenty-six of them. In that time, he’s said no to higher fuel-efficiency standards for cars, no to investments in renewable energy, no to renewable fuels. And today, we import triple the amount of oil as the day that Senator McCain took office.
“Now is the time to end this addiction, and to understand that drilling is a stop-gap measure, not a long-term solution. Not even close.
“As President, I will tap our natural gas reserves, invest in clean coal technology, and find ways to safely harness nuclear power. I’ll help our auto companies re-tool, so that the fuel-efficient cars of the future are built right here in America. I’ll make it easier for the American people to afford these new cars. And I’ll invest $150 billion over the next decade in affordable, renewable sources of energy – wind power and solar power and the next generation of biofuels; an investment that will lead to new industries and five million new jobs that pay well and can’t ever be outsourced.”
“We are the party of Roosevelt. We are the party of Kennedy. So don’t tell me that Democrats won’t defend this country. Don’t tell me that Democrats won’t keep us safe. The Bush-McCain foreign policy has squandered the legacy that generations of Americans -- Democrats and Republicans – have built, and we are to restore that legacy.
“As Commander-in-Chief, I will never hesitate to defend this nation, but I will only send our troops into harm’s way with a clear mission and a sacred commitment to give them the equipment they need in battle and the care and benefits they deserve when they come home.
“I will end this war in Iraq responsibly, and finish the fight against al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan. I will rebuild our military to meet future conflicts. But I will also renew the tough, direct diplomacy that can prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons. I will build new partnerships to defeat the threats of the 21st century: terrorism and nuclear proliferation; poverty and genocide; climate change and disease. And I will restore our moral standing so that America is once more the last, best hope for all who are called to the cause of freedom, who long for lives of peace, and who yearn for a better future.”
JOHN KERRY ADDRESSES DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION
DENVER – Senator John Kerry spoke at the Democratic National Convention in Denver on Wednesday evening.
The following are his remarks as prepared for delivery.
Four years ago, you gave me the honor of fighting our fight.
I was proud to stand with you then, and I am proud to stand with you now, to help elect Barack Obama as President of the United States . In 2004 we came so close to victory. We are even closer now and let me tell you – this time we’re going to win.
Today, the call for change is more powerful than ever – and with more seats in Congress, with more seats in Congress, with more people with more passion engaged in our politics, and with a President Obama, we stand on the brink of the greatest opportunity of our generation to move this country forward.
The stakes could not be higher because we do know what a McCain Administration would look like.
Just like the past. Just like George Bush; and this country can’t afford a third Bush term.
Just think: John McCain voted with George Bush 90% of the time – 90% of George Bush is just more than we can take.
Never in modern history has an administration squandered American power so recklessly.
Never has strategy been so replaced by ideology – never has extremism so crowded out common sense and fundamental American values. Never has short-term partisan politics so depleted the strength of America ’s bipartisan foreign policy.
George Bush, with John McCain at his side, promised to spread freedom, but delivered the wrong war in the wrong place at the wrong time.
They misread the threat and misled the country. Instead of freedom, it’s Hamas, Hezbollah, the Taliban, and dictators everywhere that are on the march. North Korea can build more bombs, and Iran is defiantly chasing one.
Our mission is to restore America ’s influence and position in the world. We must use all the weapons in our arsenal – above all, our values.
President Obama and Vice President Biden will shut down Guantanamo , respect the Constitution and make clear once and for all, the United States of America does not torture, not now, not ever.
We must listen and lead by example because even as a nation as powerful as the United States needs some friends in this world. We need a leader who understands all our security challenges: not just bombs and guns, but global warming, global terror and global AIDS. And Barack Obama understands there is no way for America to be secure until we create clean energy here at home – not with a little more oil in 10, 20 or 30 years, but with an energy revolution starting right now!
I have known and been friends with John McCain for almost 22 years. But every day now I learn something new about candidate McCain.
To those who still believe in the myth of a maverick instead of the reality of a politician: I say, let’s compare Senator McCain to candidate McCain.
Candidate McCain now supports the wartime tax cuts that Senator McCain once called irresponsible.
Candidate McCain criticizes Senator McCain’s own climate change bill.
Candidate McCain says he would now vote against the immigration bill that Senator McCain wrote.
Are you kidding? Talk about being for it before you’re against it!
Let me tell you, before he ever debates Barack Obama, John McCain should finish the debate with himself.
And what’s more, Senator McCain, who once railed against the smears of Karl Rove when he was the target, has morphed into candidate McCain who is using the same Rove tactics and the same Rove staff to repeat the same old politics of fear and smear.
Well, not this year. Not this time.
The Rove-McCain tactics are old and outworn, and America will reject them in 2008.
So remember – when we choose a commander-in-chief this November, we are electing judgment and character, not years in the Senate or years on this earth. Time and again, Barack Obama has seen farther, thought harder, and listened better – and time and time again, Barack Obama has been proven right.
John McCain stood on the deck of an aircraft carrier just three months after 9/11 and proclaimed: "Next up, Baghdad !"
Barack Obama had the judgment to see "an occupation of undetermined length, undetermined cost, and undetermined consequences" that would "only fan the flames of the Middle East ."
Well, guess what? Mission Accomplished!
So who can we trust to keep America safe?
When Barack Obama promised to honor the best traditions of both parties and talk to our enemies John McCain scoffed. George Bush called it: "The false comfort of appeasement." But today, Bush’s diplomats are doing exactly what Obama said: talking with Iran .
So who can we trust to keep America safe?
When democracy rolled out of Russia and the tanks rolled into Georgia , we saw John McCain respond immediately with the outdated thinking of the cold war. Barack Obama responded like a true friend of Georgia and a statesman of the 21st Century.
So who can we trust to keep America safe?
When Democrats called for a timetable to make Iraqis stand up for Iraq and bring our heroes home, John McCain called it "Cut and Run." But today, even President Bush has seen the light: He and Prime Minister Maliki agree on – guess what? – a timetable!
So who can we trust to keep America safe?
The McCain Bush republicans have been wrong again, and again, and again. And they know they will lose on the issues.
So, the candidate who once promised a campaign of ideas, not insults, now has nothing left but personal attacks.
How insulting to suggest that those who question the mission, question the troops?
How pathetic to suggest that those who question a failed policy doubt America itself?
How desperate to tell the son of a single mother who chose community service over money and privilege that he doesn’t put America first?
No one can question Barack Obama’s patriotism. Like all of us, he was taught what it means to be an American by his family. His grandmother who worked on a bomber assembly line in World War II. His grandfather who marched in Patton’s Army. And his great uncle who enlisted in the Army right out of high school at the height of the war, and on a spring day in 1945, he helped liberate one of the concentration camps at Buchenwald .
Ladies and Gentlemen, Barack Obama’s uncle is here with us tonight. Please join me in saluting this American hero, Charlie Payne. Charlie, your nephew, Barack Obama, will end this politics of distortion and division. He will be a president who seek, not to perfect the lies of swiftboating, but to end them once and for all.
This election is a chance for America to tell the merchants of fear and division: You don’t decide who love this country.
You don’t decide who is a patriot.
You don’t decide whose service counts and whose doesn’t.
Four years ago I said – and I say it again tonight – that flag doesn’t belong to any ideology. It doesn’t belong to any political party. It is an enduring symbol of our nation and it belongs to all the American people.
After all, patriotism is not love of power; or some cheap trick to win votes – patriotism is love of country.
Years ago when we protected a war, people would weigh in against us saying: "My country right or wrong." Our answer?
Absolutely, my country right or wrong. When right, keep it right. When wrong, make it right.
Sometimes loving your country demands you must tell the truth to power. This is one of those times, and Barack Obama is telling those truths.
In closing, let me say, I will always remember how we stood together in 2004 – not just in a campaign, but for a cause.
Now again, we stand together in the ranks, ready to fight.
The choice is clear, our cause is just, and now is our time to make Barack Obama the next President of the United States of America.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
The transformation is complete. John McCain has no principles and no beliefs anymore. If he ever did.
Just for reference:
What McCain says Obama said about Iraq:
Iran doesn't "pose a serious threat to us."
What Obama actually said:
"Strong countries and strong Presidents talk to their adversaries. That's what Kennedy did with Khrushchev. That's what Reagan did with Gorbachev. That's what Nixon did with Mao. I mean think about it. Iran, Cuba, Venezuela - these countries are tiny compared to the Soviet Union. They don't pose a serious threat to us the way the Soviet Union posed a threat to us. And yet we were willing to talk to the Soviet Union at the time when they were saying we're going to wipe you off the planet."
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
They said this on the basis of NO evidence. They said it because they WANTED it to be true, and it had absolutely NO basis in reality and NO basis in ANYTHING Hillary Clinton actually said.
And people who call themselves "reporters" spread it as though it was true. When they MADE IT UP THEMSELVES.
"It makes a lot of sense that next week John McCain and George Bush will be together in the Twin Cities, because these days they're awfully hard to tell apart." - Hillary Clinton
"I want you to ask yourselves: Were you in this campaign just for me? Or were you in it for that young Marine and others like him? Were you in it for that mom struggling with cancer while raising her kids? Were you in it for that boy and his mom surviving on the minimum wage? Were you in it for all the people in this country who feel invisible?
Here's the video:
Hillary Clinton called herself a "proud supporter of Barack Obama" after Democratic convention delegates greeted her with a standing ovation: "Barack Obama is my candidate. And he must be our president."
New York Times:
Here’s what Mrs. Clinton has to say about the opposition: “No way. No how. No McCain.”
“To my supporters, to my champions — to my sisterhood of the traveling pantsuits — from the bottom of my heart: Thank you. Thank you, because you never gave in. You never gave up. And together we made history.”
“I’m here tonight as a proud mother, as a proud Democrat, as a proud Senator from New York, a proud American and a proud supporter of Barack Obama.” Whether you voted for her or Mr. Obama, she says, “the time is now to unite as a single party with a single purpose.”
BURBANK, Calif. - John McCain, who often invokes his ordeal as a Vietnam war prisoner to show his devotion to his country as he runs for U.S. president, drew on the experience again on Monday -- this time to deflect sniping over the number of houses he owns.
"I spent 5 1/2 years in a prison cell without -- I didn't have a house. I didn't have a kitchen table. I didn't have a table. I didn't have a chair," he said.
"I spent those 5 1/2 years ... not because I wanted to get a house when I got out.
Watching him do this is just sad.
Denver's CBS affiliate reports that "at least four people are under arrest in connection with a possible plot to kill Barack Obama" and one of the suspects reportedly told authorities that they were "going to shoot Obama from a high vantage point using a ... rifle … sighted at 750 yards."
"Nothing, nothing is going to keep me away from this special gathering tonight," Kennedy said, drawing the first of many huge cheers.
"And I pledge to you that I will be there next January on the floor of the United States Senate, when we begin to write the next great chapter of American progress."
I have very mixed feelings about Ted Kennedy.
Monday, August 25, 2008
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraqi Prime Minister Prime Nuri al-Maliki said on Monday that an agreement had been reached in negotiations on a security pact with the United States to end any foreign military presence in Iraq by the end of 2011.
"There is an agreement actually reached, reached between the two parties on a fixed date which is the end of 2011 to end any foreign presence on Iraqi soil," Maliki said in a speech to tribal leaders in the Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone.
History will not be kind when discussing the Iraq Invasion.
"I'm Hillary Clinton and I do not approve that message," Clinton tells the New York delegation of McCain's ad that features her old criticism of Obama.
Clinton says Democrats are gathered in Denver for a "clear and specific purpose and that is to elect Barack Obama President of the United States," my colleague Amie Parnes reports.
"Now I ask each and every one of you to work as hard for Obama as you worked for me," she said.
Democrats' opening act: Michelle Obama
Republicans have been busy trying to paint her as unpatriotic and a loose cannon. Tonight, in a prime-time speech, she must define herself.
"She must define herself."
Why the hell is the Chicago Tribune deciding what Michelle Obama must do tonight?
They are covering it EXACTLY like they cover the Olympics: "She has to show the judges that she can regain her poise after a difficult set."
Really - it's sickening.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Tax and accounting loopholes that largely benefit rich taxpayers and companies cost the U.S. government $20 billion a year even as the pay gap between chief executives and employees has widened, two groups said on Monday.
They needed a STUDY to find out that wealthy people and corporations work the system for all its worth.
20 billion a year.
Don't expect anything to get done about it though: the people responsible for doing something about it are all bought and paid for.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Ok - that's mean. Yes, it was a godawful stupid thing to say, but I know what he meant: that Obama was a black guy who didn't scare white people. But he REALLY can't say that.
So instead, I'll give Biden props for keeping a nutjob a Robert Bork off of the Supreme Court.
Later, in closing the debate, the Judiciary Committee chairman [Biden] said: ”This has been a great debate, a debate about fundamental principle, about how one interprets the Constitution.”
Senator Biden repeated the statement with which he opened Judge Bork’s confirmation hearings last month, and which he has made a theme for the entire proceeding. ”I believe I have rights because I exist, in spite of my government, not because of my government,” he said. ”Judge Bork believes that rights flow from the majority, through the Constitution to individuals, a notion I reject.”
I still would have preferred Hillary. But I'll take it.
AUSTIN - An appeals court has upheld money-laundering indictments against two of former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay's political associates, finding that the Texas law is not unconstitutional vague or overbroad.
"The challenged statutes give constitutionally adequate notice of the conduct prohibited and sufficiently determine guidelines for law enforcement," said Third Court of Appeals Justice Alan Waldrop in a 46-page opinion issued late Friday.
The ruling was handed down exactly two years from the date the case was argued. The three judges on the panel that heard the case are all Republicans.
But the ruling provided a potential defense for James Ellis and John Colyando by finding that personal checks were not covered by the money laundering statute prior to 2005. The two and DeLay are accused of conspiring to funnel $190,000 in corporate cash illegally to seven Texas House candidates in the 2002 elections, when Republicans captured control of the Legislature. All three say the transactions done by a political campaign committee known as Texans for a Republican Majority were completely legal
Friday, August 22, 2008
When it was pointed out that McCain's pronouncements on the economy often do not conform to his official positions, the candidate's chief economic adviser indicated that we should pay attention to the authorized version -- despite the fact that McCain "has certainly I'm sure said things in town halls" that might deviate.
In other words, don't pay such strict attention to what McCain says because he doesn't speak officially for his own campaign.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said in an interview Wednesday that he was uncertain how many houses he and his wife, Cindy, own.
"I think — I'll have my staff get to you," McCain told Politico in Las Cruces, N.M. "It's condominiums where — I'll have them get to you."
Well, THERE'S an average American for you: a guy who has to ask his staff how many houses he owns.
Well - I guess that explains why he doesn't think there's anything wrong with the economy, eh?
Deal calls for troop pullback in Iraq
US says pact still needs final approvals
BAGHDAD - Iraqi and US negotiators have completed a draft security agreement that would see American troops leave Iraqi cities as soon as June 30, Iraqi and American officials said yesterday.
After leaving the cities, the US troops would initially be sent to bases in other parts of the country to make them less visible but still available to assist Iraqi forces as needed.
As far as I can tell, the Bush administration and the United States Government is now agreeing with Barack Obama as to what should be done in Iraq.
In addition, they are adopting the redeployment strategy that Congressman John Murtha called for years ago, for which he was attacked by the very people who are now adopting his strategy.
But the media will report this as vindication of the ideas George W. Bush and John McCain.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
In all the discussion of John McCain's recently recovered memory of a religious epiphany in Vietnam, one thing has been missing. The torture that was deployed against McCain emerges in all the various accounts. It involved sleep deprivation, the withholding of medical treatment, stress positions, long-time standing, and beating. Sound familiar?
According to the Bush administration's definition of torture, McCain was therefore not tortured.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
From an AP article about McCain's possible Veep picks:
His top contenders are said to include Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. Less traditional choices mentioned include former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge, an abortion-rights supporter, and Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman, the Democratic vice presidential prick in 2000 who now is an independent.
Monday, August 18, 2008
And I hope he has enough to respond with clarity and force - WITHOUT seeming to respond in kind.
This is a good start:
"John McCain and I fundamentally disagree on how we are gonna move this country forward. He ran a negative ad -- which is most of the ads he runs -- he ran a negative ad that claimed all my economic plan was was higher taxes and that it would lead to economic disaster," Obama said, before going on to tell the audience that his tax policy would benefit the middle class more than McCain's. "I've got news for John McCain: My plan's not gonna bring about economic disaster. We already have economic disaster from John McCain's president George W. Bush, and we can't afford another four years or eight years of George W. Bush policies and that's why we're gonna beat John McCain in this election to put America on a new path."
George W. Bush should be hung around John McCain's neck CONSTANTLY.
And unlike McCain's attacks, that one is actually true.
Gee - wasn't just a couple of months ago that right-wingers swore that we should kowtow to everything this guy wanted, lest we OFFEND him?
Remember? Barack Obama said that if Bin Laden was known to be in Pakistan, we should go get him, whether Musharraf liked it or not. And the Republicans were all appalled that that nasty Senator Obama could be so insensitive to dear sweet Pervez Musharraf.
Are they EVER right?
Ex-Marine Accused Of War Crime Speaks Out
Says Soldiers May Begin To Fear Civilian Prosecution For Doing Their Jobs
(AP) A former Marine sergeant facing the first federal civilian prosecution of a military member accused of a war crime says there is much more at stake than his claim of innocence on charges that he killed unarmed detainees in Fallujah, Iraq.
In the view of Jose Luis Nazario Jr., U.S. troops may begin to question whether they will be prosecuted by civilians for doing what their military superiors taught them to do in battle.
"They train us, and they expect us to rely back on that training. Then when we use that training, they prosecute us for it?" Nazario said during an interview Saturday with The Associated Press.
Of course, it would be easy to point out the ludicrousness of "If they prosecute us for war crimes, we'll be afraid to commit war crimes" as a defense, but, personally, I DO sort of understand the difficulty of a soldier who IS given illegal orders. If he disobeys, he goes to jail. If he obeys, he goes to jail.
But, of course, the solution to that is to prosecute the shits who gave him the orders in the first place ALSO. Nazario is claiming as his defense that he was ordered to commit war crimes. Ok - is anybody getting the names of the people he claims gave him those orders, and questioning them with an eye toward their arrest? Of course not - consequences are for underlings.
But this statement, from Nazario's lawyer, is the sort of thing that gets me crazy:
"This boils down to one thing in my mind: Are we going to allow civilian juries to Monday-morning-quarterback military decisions?" said Nazario's attorney, Kevin McDermott.
Is anyone going to smack this asshole just for being a moron? Is anyone going to say, "Hey, you dickhead, this is America, and the military IS under civilian authority. DUH. You're a LAWYER and you don't know that?"
Yes, I know. Of COURSE no one is going to say that. Not even politely.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.) said today that he wants to rescind $10 billion in U.S. funds that have been so far unspent on Iraqi reconstruction, citing Iraq's ballooning budget surplus. Dorgan wants to use the money for domestic renewable energy production instead.
Dorgan said he plans to introduce the Iraq Self-Sufficiency and American Energy Independence Act when Congress returns. The bill would transfer the unspent reconstruction funds to the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy in the Department of Energy.
“Today, Americans are paying sky-high prices for oil and gas, and at the same time the Bush administration is continuing to spend billions of dollars a year for Iraq reconstruction even though that country has huge budget surpluses. That is a bankrupt strategy,” said Dorgan.
Now let's see if the Democratic MAJORITY (they have a majority - remember?) has the sense to jump on the idea and trumpet it to the skies, and see if they can make Bush throw a public temper tantrum.
Ah - silly me. That would take a spine and some sense.
Monday, August 11, 2008
"I know his grandmother lives in Hawaii and I know Hawaii is a state, but it has the look of him going off to some sort of foreign, exotic place. He should be in Myrtle Beach."
Gee, Cokie - you know it's a state. Have you been boning up on geography lately?
Would you be happier if he visited somebody else's grandmother?
"But more important than the mathematical details is the portrait the senator from Arizona is trying to paint of his opponent as an untested leader whose domestic policies are obscured by the media spotlight."
Apparently, he's just been waiting until he finished fashioning a response that would completely disempower McCain's "celebrity" attacks.
"For decades, he's been Washington's biggest celebrity," the announcer says of McCain in the Obama ad, titled "Embrace." It then shows the introduction of the Arizona Republican during an appearance on " Saturday Night Live."
The latest advertisement by the Obama campaign shows footage of McCain hugging President Bush.
"As Washington embraced him, John McCain hugged right back," the announcer says, showing footage of McCain with lobbyists, aides and Bush.
"The lobbyists -- running his low-road campaign. The money -- billions in tax breaks for oil and drug companies, but almost nothing for families like yours. Lurching to the right, then the left, the old Washington dance, whatever it takes. John McCain. A Washington celebrity playing the same old Washington games."
It's perfect, because he's right, of course. McCain is the ultimate Washingtion insider, and the darling of the Washington media insiders. THE political celebrity of the jackasses who have turned politics into celebrity culture.
Here it is:
Friday, August 08, 2008
Because with the incredibly worthless, broken American media, it would be pretty damned easy news to miss.
Russia and Georgia appear to be at war, and THIS is the CNN Home page:
updated 56 minutes ago'These aren't Cheech and Chong plants'
That's the top story.
Next to it, we have the headlines:
- Ticker: Edwards admits lying about affair
- CNNMoney: Dow surges on sinking oil
- Russian, Georgian troops in fierce fighting
Not nearly as important as the contents of John Edwards' pants is:
MEGVREKISI, Georgia (Aug. 8) -- Russia sent forces into Georgia on Friday to repel a Georgian assault on the breakaway South Ossetia region and Georgia's pro-Western president said the two countries were at war.As an aside, I wonder how many idiots saw "Russian Forces Invade Georgia" and thought that they landed in Atlanta?
We now return you to a society in decline.
Thursday, August 07, 2008
STURGIS, South Dakota (CNN) – Standing on the main stage at a world famous motorcycle rally in rural South Dakota on Monday, John McCain looked out on a sea of denim-wearing bikers and told them he enjoyed their company much more than that of the 200,000 Germans who turned out to see Barack Obama last month....
Indeed, McCain felt so comfortable at the event that he even volunteered his wife for the rally’s traditional beauty pageant, an infamously debauched event that’s been known to feature topless women.
“I encouraged Cindy to compete,” McCain said to cheers. “I told her with a little luck she could be the only woman ever to serve as first lady and Miss Buffalo Chip.”
I believe that at last year's event, "Miss Buffalo Chip" fellated a banana.
Can you IMAGINE what would happen if Barack Obama said that he "encouraged" Michelle to enter a topless beauty pageant for the pleasure of a gathering of bikers? This election would be OVER. The "liberal media" would have it on a 24/7 news loop, and play it every fifteen minutes for three days.
(CBS/AP) With all eyes on Beijing, President Bush bluntly told China that America is strongly opposed to the way the communist government represses its people, a rebuke delivered from the heart of Asia on the cusp of the Olympic Games.
The Chinese should "bluntly" tell Bush that they aren't about to take moral advice from a guy who tortures prisoners, and who lied so he could have an excuse to go kill people.
Friday, August 01, 2008
WASHINGTON - John McCain accused Barack Obama of playing politics with race on Thursday after the first black candidate with a serious chance of winning the White House claimed Republicans will try to scare voters by saying he "doesn't look like all those other presidents on the dollar bills."
And who doubts that for a second? The Republicans have played racial politics in the every Presidential election since at least Nixon, even when the candidate WASN'T black.
Saying that the Republicans will use race to scare voters is like saying the sun will come up tomorrow morning.
Run against the GOP, Cole tells hopefuls
Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.) told GOP congressional hopefuls on Thursday that they should not be afraid to criticize both political parties – including Republican members of the House.
The poor bastards.
WASHINGTON - A federal judge on Thursday rejected President Bush's contention that senior White House advisers are immune from subpoenas, siding with Congress' power to investigate the executive branch and handing a victory to Democrats probing the dismissal of nine federal prosecutors.
The unprecedented ruling undercut three presidential confidants who have defied congressional subpoenas for information that Bush says is protected by executive privilege. Democrats swiftly announced they would schedule hearings in September, at the height of election season.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the House could soon vote on a contempt citation against one of the three officials, Karl Rove, formerly Bush's top adviser.
"It certainly strengthens our hand," she said of the ruling. "This decision should send a clear signal to the Bush administration that it must cooperate fully with Congress and that former administration officials Harriet Miers and Karl Rove must testify before Congress."
But how much you want to bet that absolutely nothing happens?
Jobless Rate Climbs to 5.7% as 51,000 Jobs Lost in July
The nation’s employers eliminated 51,000 jobs in July, the seventh consecutive contraction in the labor market.
And the unemployment rate rose 5.7 percent, a sign that the pressure on business owners and consumers is likely to continue.
It's sort of odd that the first news about the thing since it happened is the suicide of the prime suspect.
It's also odd that there doesn't seem to be a mention of a motive anywhere.
An article by Glenn Greenwald just reminded me that when it happened, the Government heavily pushed the idea that the anthrax might have come from Iraq.
Gee, I wonder why.