If you don't speak up you accept what is happening. This site was born out of the mainstream media's inability to cover the news. I am just an American cititzen trying to spread the word in the era of FCC consolidation, post 9/11 Patriot Act hysteria, hackable voting machines and war without end. I rant and post news items I perceive to be relevant to our current situation.
All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent.
- Thomas Jefferson
Social Security is not broken and therefore does not need to be fixed
So Called Social Security Crisis (SCSSC)
Comments, questions, corrections, rebuttals are always welcome.
I would like to introduce you to the next Saddam Hussein, his name is Islam Karimov and he's from Uzbekistan.
It looks like a new strategy is being put in place, Pentagon Hawk Released -- Straws in the Wind? If you read this quote you can see that it is no longer attack, attack, attack. It has become reelect, reelect, reelect.
"He's not being fired, but they're starting to move people around,'' said one knowledgeable source. ''It's all about (Bush's) re-election and how to get rid of the loonies without looking like they screwed up.''Looney might be taking it easy on this guy! I can't wait until they get rid of all the "loonies". Cheney, Rummy, Wolfie, Perle, Feith, Armitage, Bolton, and on down the line.
Check out this guys positions...
A champion of U.S. withdrawal from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) treaty, Crouch has supported military action against Cuba; defended the development of offensive chemical weapons; opposed the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) and the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT); and advocated the development of new nuclear weapons for such purposes as destroying underground facilities (bunker-busters).
A former soldier talks about the flag, Where are the Flags?
William Rivers Pitt, on the Christian fanatics that have taken over our government, The Revolution Was Not Televised.
Gen.Tommy Franks: I gave Bush Iraq invasion plan after 9/11. There are a couple of things in this. One is the fact that he drew up plans to invade Iraq in--well the article states a few months after 9/11--so lets say by January 2002 but the decision wasn't made until March 17, 2003. That is completely unbelievable. Evidence of that comes later in the article when it states that Franks was surprised no weapons were used and expected them to be used. If you remember before they war he had to give up all his supposed weapons or the regime would fall. Saddam or us were never told exactly what that would entail. Just like the current change from WMD to weapons programs. So if you believe he had WMD and he was not going to give them up and the inspectors were not going to find them then he must be hiding them. Remember this, "If the inspectors don't find anything that is evidence that he is not cooperating. If he was cooperating the inspectors would be finding the weapons that he's hiding."? So in my opinion, I agree with Ted Kennedy, that it was probably decided on his August vacation in 2002.
Studs Terkel, No Brass Check Journalists
Intelligence War Is Trouble for Bush. No surprise here.
Howard Zinn, An Occupied Country. It's a little old.
I've got one thing to say about this WOW story, DUH!! Wow, as in Windfalls of War. Oh the corruption.
I can remember when your current President was looking for a Vice President. Do you remember who was chosen to head up the search for the VP candidate? I remember my wife commenting when the selection was made, "Cheney looks all around the country and then selects himself as the best choice." That came to mind as I read this, Cheney's hawks 'hijacking policy'. I just recently heard about this woman and apparently she could be very bad for the Bush administration. An archive of her articles can be found here, Karen Kwiatkowski: Archives, this article in particular, Warning Shots.
An update on the Plame leak and the Democratic Party, The Wilson-CIA Leak, WMDs and the Dems.
A little more on the "Mission Accomplished" fallout. Do they really think anyone will believe they had no control over this? A President doesn't wipe his ass without it being timed down to the second and they expect people to believe that he just happened to walk out there on the deck of that carrier in the middle of that sign the Navy put up. Don't forget, here is what "the death of outrage" himself said about Gore, (Thanks to Media Whores Online for the quote):
Albert Arnold Gore Jr. is a habitual liar. The vice president lies reflexively, promiscuously, even pathologically. He lies on matters large and small, significant and trivial, when he "needs" to and when he doesn't.Another milestone, 'Postwar' Deaths Pass Numbers During 'Major Combat' in Iraq.
Source: Bill "Snake Eyes" Bennett
Newsweek picks up the story, Black Box Voting Blues. If you're up on the story, nothing new here. It's good to see the mainstream picking up on it. A Brief History of Computerized Election Fraud in America, if you're in the mood.
Your President had a "press conference" yesterday. Feel free to watch it, if you have the stomach, or just read the transcript. The Center for American Progress takes apart the lies. Amazing!
Check out this exchange:
Q Thank you, Mr. President. You recently put Condoleezza Rice, your National Security Advisor, in charge of the management of the administration's Iraq policy. What has effectively changed since she's been in charge? And the second question, can you promise a year from now that you will have reduced the number of troops in Iraq?
THE PRESIDENT: The second question is a trick question, so I won't answer it. The first question was Condoleezza Rice. Her job is to coordinate interagency. She's doing a fine job of coordinating interagency. She's doing -- the role of the National Security Advisor is to not only provide good advice to the President, which she does on a regular basis -- I value her judgment and her intelligence -- but her job is also to deal interagency and to help unstick things that may get stuck, is the best way to put it. She's an unsticker. And -- is she listening? Okay, well, she's doing a fine job.
Mission Accomplished! The new explanation, Bush Steps Away From Victory Banner. More from Buzzflash, "Mission Accomplished": Anatomy of a Deadly Lie.
A crack? GOP unity is strained by attacks. I love this quote from Trent Lott.
“Honestly, it’s a little tougher than I thought it was going to be,” Lott said. In a sign of frustration, he offered an unorthodox military solution: “If we have to, we just mow the whole place down, see what happens. You’re dealing with insane suicide bombers who are killing our people, and we need to be very aggressive in taking them out.”Talk about winning the hearts and minds.
A Chinese immigrant from Mao's China sees some similarities with his current country,
So why are these 40-year-old stories of political rigidity in a faraway land relevant in America today? I'm certainly not suggesting an equivalence between the political climate in America now and China then. But I am getting a whiff of the Leninism with which I grew up in the air of today's America, and it makes me feel increasingly uneasy.This story is two weeks old but it is an important one. With unemployment running 60-70% in Iraq why is this going on? Isn't it "curious" that KBR, Halliburton and Bechtel are all mentioned in the article? Contractors in Iraq Accused of Importing Labor and Exporting Profit. Something like this can only hurt the reconstruction effort.
I could not help but think about China recently during the flap over former State Department envoy Joseph C. Wilson IV, who angered the White House with his finding that documents suggesting Iraq had tried to acquire nuclear material from Niger were in all likelihood forged. The administration went ahead anyway in citing the documents as part of its justification for invading Iraq. After Wilson wrote an article for the New York Times calling attention to the deception, someone in the administration allegedly leaked information to the press that Wilson's wife was an undercover CIA agent. In China, it was not just one official like Wilson who was targeted for retribution but countless individuals, many of whom spoke unwelcome truths about their country, only to be rewarded with public shaming or prison sentences.
I don't know how well you pay attention to the casualty figures coming out of Iraq but if you go to this site on a daily basis some interesting things come to light. One is that there is an incredible amount of violence going on in that country. I check this site, Iraq Coalition Casualty Count (linked to the right), daily. If you go there and look at what has been listed for today you may notice that it is not just US casualties that are listed. For example today a newspaper editor and Baghdad's deputy mayor were killed along with 2 US soldiers. Also you find this, DoD Identifies Army Casualties, which was not reported until today. This type appears quite a bit, 82d ABN DIV SOLDIER DIES OF NON-HOSTILE GUNSHOT WOUND, non-hostile gunshot wound and this being under investigation are two key elements to the story. From what I understand about these types of deaths they are either suicide or a fragging, which is:
Main Entry: fragAnother sign of how good things are going there. So when you hear about casualties in the main stream media most of the time all you hear about are the number killed. It does seem they are mentioning the number of wounded more lately. Most of the time they do not mention the number of Iraqis killed. They also do not mention the "non-hostile" dead nor do they go back and mention those who die that come out a few days after the fact as evidenced above. What this goes to show is that there is plenty of violence still going on in Iraq and still plenty of dying, no matter what the President is saying.
Function: transitive verb
Inflected Form(s): fragged; fragged; frag·ging; frags; -s
Etymology: frag, noun
: to deliberately injure or kill (one's military leader) by means of a fragmentation grenade
William Rivers Pitt is at it again. He calls the recent upsurge in violence in Iraq The Ramadan Offensive and compares it to Tet.
This could be promising, 9/11 Commission Could Subpoena Oval Office Files and the administrations retort, Bush: No Stonewall Of 9-11 Panel.
More on the administrations media problems, The Media War Comes Home. Here is the Frank Rich article referenced in the previous link, Why Are We Back in Vietnam?
Maybe the mainstream is starting to get it. This is from Newsweek, The $87 Billion Money Pit.
I take a day off and all hell breaks loose. Next your President comes out with some of the best doublespeak I've seen in a least a week, Bush Says Attacks Are Reflection of U.S. Gains. Just a little taste:
"The more successful we are on the ground, the more these killers will react," Bush said as he sat in the Oval Office with L. Paul Bremer, the U.S. administrator in Iraq. He added: "The more progress we make on the ground, the more free the Iraqis become, the more electricity is available, the more jobs are available, the more kids that are going to school, the more desperate these killers become, because they can't stand the thought of a free society."Counterpoint: Democrats mock president on Iraq. Honestly I waffle back and forth between whether this guy is the dumbest person ever to hold political office or wheter they just like to try stuff like this out and see if it will fly. But you notice I say "they" so it's probably that he is an idiot!
So what is going on with the Rumsfeld memo? I think now that it is clear-- contrary from what I said Wednesday about Rummy being setup-- that Rumsfeld intended this to be released. This story, Rumsfeld "Memo" an Obvious Plant, gives one scenario. It looks like it is turning into every man for himself.
Remember last week when you President decided to go around the filter? Well It appears that the filter seems to be working pretty well in his favor, Press Underreports Wounded in Iraq .
Love this guys stuff. He writes for the Moscow Times. Why can't we get stories like this in our country? Thieves Like Us.
Check out this CentCom press release, TWO 1ST AD SOLDIERS DIE IN SEPARATE NON-COMBAT INCIDENTS.
Paul Krugman makes economics easy, Too Low a Bar.
"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be."
-Thomas Jefferson, 1816.
REPUBLIC vs. DEMOCRACY.
Eric Altermans first column for the Center for American Progress, Think Again.
Deibold sure is touchy, Students Fight E-Vote Firm.
John Mellencamp and his wife write a letter to us all. An Open Letter to America: It's Time to Take Back Our Country. Springsteen, The Dixie Chicks and now Mellencamp.
Another cartoon, Get Your War On.
They wouldn't have it any other way, White House Plays Politics on Probe of 9/11.
This is the guy from Sy Hersh's Stovepipe article from yesterday, ''Khidhir Hamza: The bogus intelligence source''.
Even I can understand this, Bush doctrine simplified.
Remember General Boykin? And He’s Head of Intelligence?
A cartoon, Troubletown, finally the good news.
William Rivers Pitt explains his Anyone But Bush Association (ABBA) stance.
I do not hate George W. Bush merely for the sake of hatred, or because he is a Republican. I hate him because he is a cancer that is rotting out the guts of this country. I hate him because he would not know the truth if it crawled up his leg and grabbed him by the nose. Truth does not advance the profit motive.Is Rummy being setup or what? Defense Memo: A Grim Outlook. Remember this story from last week? Bush orders officials to stop the leaks.
For liberals who denounce the ABBA perspective as being without integrity, my response is simple. Voting for anyone who can remove Mr. Bush, his administration, and all of these deadly lies from the highest office in the land is an act of singular integrity and patriotism. All hail the baloney sandwich, and never mind the blasphemy.
This is how your President is taking care of the troops, Sick, Wounded U.S. Troops Held in Squalor.
Renowned investigative reporter Seymour Hersh shows what happened with the pre-war intelligence. It's a concept called THE STOVEPIPE.
If you don't see the coffins no one is actually dying, right? Curtains Ordered for Media Coverage of Returning Coffins.
If you are a friend of this administrtion you've got it made! Cronyism in US Contracts Clouds Iraq Fundraising.
What the hell is going on? Have we all lost are minds? Or do we just not have time? Or is it just too hard to think about our government, with our money, going around the world murdering people? I think there are many, many people who didn't think this generation would allow this to happen again. I have a very bad opinion of the "Baby Boom" generation anyway, and this isn't helping. Although they are in charge most of us are following their lead. I think we are all in the same boat. We want to do something but just don't know what to do. I've said here many times give to money to your candidate. Speak to family and friends about these subjects. Join Moveon.org and call your representatives each time they send an alert. These are some of the little steps I have taken. They are not much but they are a start. In my opinion the most important thing one can do is stay informed on what is going on. That makes you very dangerous to these sick people. We have sick people running our country and this man is one of the sickest, Perle: Force Against N. Korea Only Option.
Remember all the hot air last week about how good things are going in Iraq. The "filter" if you will. How much video did you see about all the good things. Remember all the pictures of our troops being glad-handed by the Iraqi people? There hands could not hold all of those flowers. So it looks like everyone is getting off subject so guess what--BOOM--a new Osama tape. How is it that he knows to show up just when Bushs' numbers are going down as well as the populus' fear? His timing in impeccable. One more thing on the filter. If you haven't read this yet you must, Truth from These Podia(.pdf), it is essential. The President does not have a problem with the filter, what he has a problem with is the way the filter is working. If it's a Fox filter, no problem.
This woman has a problem, A Mother's Rage. I don't think she cares very much for what the President wants to do with her son.
I have spent 25 years watching my son grow into a man of decency, kindness, and goodness. I also know that on Oct 24, he will lose his right to be discharged, and be deployed to God knows where. For what? For a spoiled frat boy with no integrity and no compassion who will murder him for money and for his corporate friends.It's a good thing the adults are back in charge, Don't ask, don't know.
Look who's fighting for you. THE PRIVATIZATION OF WAR AND PEACE.
The Libertarians take on Limbaugh, America owes talk host Rush Limbaugh a debt of gratitude, Libertarians say.
All of these speak for themselves. Just good reading.
Piss On My Leg.
Holding Leaders Accountable for Untruths About War.
The new Great Game.
Electronic Voting: What You Need To Know.
Some good news today. It looks like our side, whether you want to be called liberal or progressive, is starting to fight back. Here is a good read about how to get our message out by using the same tactics the right did, The Battle Hymn of the New Liberal Media: A Good Business Plan. It refers to the new liberal think tank, the Center for American Progress. It looks like it's going to be a great site for information. I will add it to the links on this site. Go to the Media section it has some really good info. I recommend subscribing to the e-mail newsletter. I'm not sure if any of you listen to the internet radio that is mentioned. But i.e. America Radio (Thom Hartmann and Mike Malloy), Randi Rhodes are all available on the internet. This site, The White Rose Society, has three weeks worth of archives of all three shows so you can listen at you leisure. They are all a little different. My favorite is Mike Malloy. He is on from 8pm-11pm, Central Time. Call, write or e-mail your local radio station to get these people on your radio. To me this is very good news and hopefully it will continue.
There seems to be a very interesting change going on around the world. Many countries that were planning to or have been asked to send troops to Iraq are making an interesting statement. Most countries that are willing to send troops have said, "they would wait for an invitation from the Iraqi people before committing troops". In these two articles--Iraqis 'must ask' for Saudi and Pakistan troops and More US troops killed in Iraq, Turkish deployment plan sparks fresh protests--it seems that the international community seems to be going over the our governments head. Maybe they have found out what Robert Byrd already knows, The Emperor Has No Clothes.
No surprise here, State Dept. Study Foresaw Trouble Now Plaguing Iraq. Here is some very good information on the Future of Iraq Project referenced in the previous article. The report is not available, top secret, but this site uses what has been said about it in the press to make up for it. So once again our government knew bad things were going to happen in Iraq if they went at it the way they did. So we have to ask the question, why did they do it the way they did? Why did they want chaos, guerilla war and a disgruntled Iraqi citizenship?
Two more, see ya Monday.
Paul Krugman writes some of the funniest stuff out there. Too bad that it's about serious stuff. The Sweet Spot, here's a little taste:
George W. Bush is like a man who tells you that he's bought you a fancy new TV set for Christmas, but neglects to tell you that he charged it to your credit card, and that while he was at it he also used the card to buy some stuff for himself. Eventually, the bill will come due - and it will be your problem, not his.Michael Kinsley on George Bush's Filter Tips.
I haven't been on this subject in a while. Some think that the whole Joe Wilson/Valerie Plame/leak thing was concocted to take peoples' minds off of it. Where are the WMD's? Well remember the botulinum David Kay and your President spoke of? Well here is the scoop on that, Experts Downplay Bioagent. I saw this late yesterday, CIA and Pentagon split over uranium intrigue. Well it looks to me like it was just another Niger uranium scam. I think the CIA remembers this guy, CIA Not Buying Weapons Story. Want to know who Michael A. Ledeen is. He wants Iran bad, Into the Quagmire. In this excerpt he talks about how Iran keeps changing its explanations:
The Kazemi obscenity exposed the regime's basic characteristics, from its murderous attacks on those who try to tell the outside world the truth about the Islamic Republic, to its instant denial of any accusation or criticism, to its crafty routine of constantly-changing "explanations." As with earlier murders of its pro-democracy critics, the regime first denied that there was a murder at all ("she fell and bumped her head"), then admitted that something untoward had happened ("we are investigating"), then found someone to put on trial (most likely a convenient scapegoat). In the last two weeks, Iran has been sternly denounced by the European Union, and warned that if the mullahs' human-rights practices do not improve, the EU will invoke sanctions.Hmmm, know any other government that keeps changing its explanations? Just another psychopathic neo-con with a plan how to take over the world.
It looks like the true conservatives are getting fed up with these guys. Foreign Policy Experts Target U.S. 'Empire-Building'.
Yesterdays big news, The UN Security Council Gives Unanimous Support For Iraq Resolution. Here is the reaction. From Germany, Opinion: U.N. Resolution on Iraq is Hardly an Inspired Solution. From The New York Times, The U.N. Vote on Iraq. What do those in Iraq's neighborhood think, Islamic Nations Grumble Over U.N. Iraq Vote. Was it all for the American Sheeple? Heaviest load remains in U.S. hands.
If you haven't seen this, The Pentagon Unleashes a Holy Warrior, you have to read the whole thing. I was going to do some excerpts but when I had almost pasted the whole article in I decided it's just better to read the whole thing. If you are not Christian this has got to be scary. Fanatics like this are ruining this country. More on this from earlier in the year, Onward Christian Soldiers.
Henry Waxman is one of the only Democrats trying to hold this administrations feet to the fire. Here is his House Committee on Government Reform-Minority Office web site. There is tons of stuff here. My favorite area is on the right side under features, the Iraq Contracts link. This is where the exposure of Halliburton and Bechtel is occurring.
Remember Afghanistan? US explores its Afghanistan exit options.
If this wasn't so sad it would be funny, Bush orders officials to stop the leaks.
Friedman makes some good points here, On Listening. Although it seems like he contradicts himself here:
To begin with, listening might actually force the Bush team to frame its vision of U.S. foreign policy and its rationale for the Iraq war on our hopes for the world, not just our fears of it. Every other word out of this administration's mouth now is "terror" or "terrorism." We have stopped exporting hope, the most important commodity America has. We now export only fear, so we end up importing everyone else's fears right back.We've been serious about confronting threats even though all we export is fear, no longer listen to our friends and talk about nothing but terror, terror, terror? That's seems a little contradictory to me.
Yes, America faces real threats, and this administration, to its credit, has been serious about confronting them. But America also has many more friends, actual and potential, and nurturing them is also part of our national security. We cannot spend so much time talking about our enemies that we forget to listen to our friends, because without them, ultimately, we cannot win either a war of terrorism or a war of ideas.
I don't know how the family members of 9/11 victims take this! Agency has Kean feeling frustrated.
And on and on and on.....Not Getting the Truth .
A Democrat speaks out. Kennedy to assail Bush over Iraq war
I couldn't make up stuff better than this, Six in Ten Iraqis Unemployed, but U. S. Subcontractors Hire Cheap Migrant Laborers
"Nearly six months have elapsed since President Bush flew out to the aircraft carrier and declared `Mission Accomplished' in Iraq," Kennedy says. "Today, we all know all too well that the war is not over; the war goes on; the mission is not accomplished. An unnecessary war, based on unreliable and inaccurate intelligence, has not brought an end to danger. Instead, it has brought new dangers, imposed new costs, and taken more and more American lives each week. We all agree that Saddam Hussein was a murderous tyrant, and his brutal regime was an affront to basic human decency. But Iraq was not a breeding ground for terrorism. Our invasion has made it one."
He continues: "All the administration's rationalizations as we prepared to go to war now stand revealed as double-talk. The American people were told Saddam Hussein was building nuclear weapons. He was not. We were told he had stockpiles of other weapons of mass destruction. He did not. We were told he was involved in 9/11. He was not. We were told Iraq was attracting terrorists from Al Qaeda. It was not. We were told our soldiers would be viewed as liberators. They are not. We were told Iraq could pay for its own reconstruction. It cannot. We were told the war would make America safer. It has not."
What is one of the hardest things to do? In my opinion it is to admit that you were wrong. The interesting thing about being wrong is that once you admit that fact, to yourself and others, most people will forgive and become willing to help. The reason I bring this up is because last night I was reading an article about how the media in this country was wrong about this war as well, obviously. So in my mind that is the reason they are not all over the story 24/7. To be able to fully take apart all the lies of this administration they first have to admit they themselves were wrong. They bought the lie that was being told. That's if you believe the media is still independent. I believe they were told to toe the company line. What's good for GE is good for America. So how does the media admit that it was wrong about so many things and not look like a bunch of stooges? Well it looks to me like they are slowly and I mean very slowly starting to turn on this administration. As evidence I give you this, Scottie & Me. This used to be Ari & Me until Ari left. This piece has always been Mr. Mokhiber vs. Ari/Scottie. Notice how NBC's David Gregory jumps in at the end. But maybe, just maybe if they start asking the right questions more people will notice what has happened. I do not expect the media to admit they were wrong. I'm trying to imagine how the media would admit they were wrong. Who would represent the media at the press conference and who would question them?
So, staying on subject, Lies about Iraq rise to level of the absurd.
Joe Wilson's has a little more info, Wilson adds ammo to hit war credibility gap. The brief is in .pdf format to the right of the story.
Check this one out, State Democrats blast Nethercutt for Iraq comment.
It's the same old story, 9 U.S. Soldiers Die in 7 Separate Incidents in Iraq. So what is going on in Iraq you ask? Juan Cole has a good background on the Shiites, The Iraqi Shiites. Well the new man to blame appears to be Muqtada al Sadr. These two articles tell of the current situation with the Shiites in Iraq, Iraqi Shiite split widens and Coalition: Young cleric behind recent violence in Iraq. Nothing like liberating a country by starting a religious war.
Woops, there goes another war rationale, Iraq War Swells Al Qaeda's Ranks, Report Says .
Winning the hearts and minds? US Soldiers Bulldoze Farmers' Crops.
Here's the whole story on the letters to the editor. Officer was the one behind 500 letters.
Ex-Aide: Powell Misled Americans. Really?
The whistleblower blows again. Coleen Rowley: The wrong side of 'us vs. them'.
As I read this article, ANATOMY OF A LIE , all sorts of things were going through my mind. How stupid Americans are. How we have the least amount of time off in the industrialized world. When he talks about the sound bite in our culture it makes me think of just how gullible most citizens of this country are. Just to name a few. It's as if they say, "Well, if the President says it's true it must be the truth". Even after all the lying we've had from Presidents whether it be about their personal lives (Clinton, as well as others) or about foreign policy (LBJ, Reagan, Bush I, just to name a few) many people still believe this guy is truthful and honest. I didn't even bring up Nixon?! Anyway, the new PR offensive is underway Out of Control and a new Poll shows Bush job approval rating back up so everything is back to normal, you can go back to sleep. Here is a quote from TJ about how we should avoid becoming the "American Sheeple", "Lethargy [is] the forerunner of death to the public liberty." --Thomas Jefferson to William Stephens Smith, 1787.
Can't find the American media saying anything about this, US hawk does not rule out Syria attack. Perle is a sick, sick man.
I have not said much on this subject and do not plan to. My way of dealing with this man has been to ignore him. I've said over the years that I think he is just a "shock jock" out to make money. For all I know he might not believe all he says he is just trying to start a controversy to keep himself popular. Here is a good take on the situation, Rush’s Drug Use No Joking Matter.
Josh Marshall who has been on this story from the beginning, some call it "Intimigate", works over Bob Novak, Taking Novak up on his challenge over his one regret.
So where do we go from here? How do we change this current situation? Can it be changed? I think the only way is that each and everyone of us needs to know what we would like our country to be. Do you still believe in polls? Do you still get your information from major media? I still do to a certain extent, Washington Post, New York Times, etc... Look at the this blog, a decent amount of articles come from major media. I try to stay away but it can be hard. I still want to watch Hardball every night. Although, the way that he @#$%&* off Schwarzenegger last week was the last straw. Have you watched a debate yet? I've seen parts if not most of each one but there is not much substance there. Each person gets a minute or two here or there and they never get into a flow. It appears to me that most of the candidates are saying virtually the same thing. Except for Dean and Clark who are the frontrunners at this point and are just fending off attacks from the rest. I know this is a rambling post but what I am doing is trying to find out who out of these nine can change the current state of our union.
A fundamental issue is how we spend our money. As this article states, War on the Poor:
A budget is a moral document. It clearly demonstrates the priorities of a family, an organization, a government. A budget shows what we most care about. President Bush sent his budget to Congress in FebruaryÃ‚Â—a budget that he said reflected his most important prioritiesÃ‚Â—so it is worth paying close attention to.So what does this article show other than how much we like toys. It tells of how we spend more on defense in this country then we do on anything else. Were you aware of that? Are most Americans? Do you really believe all that spending on defense makes us safer? We will always need a newer better weapon to keep us safe from our current enemy. Is any candidate in this race talking about lowering defense spending? Health care, everyone of them has a plan, what are they? The Bush tax cuts, what are they going to do with those? Iraq. Were they for it and what are they going to do with it? Just some things to think about when looking over the candidates. There are many other issues. Find the ones that are important to you and see where the candidates stand on the issues. Then fight for the one you think is the best.
Some days I just read the news and wonder what has happened to my country.
An economist on the economy, Paul Krugman. Don't Look Down.
Words mean different things depending on who uses them. Bush & Co. Use the Orwell Sales Strategy.
An interesting question. Why can't we nab the real bad guys?
This looks interesting. The Daily Mis-Lead, A Chronicle of Bush Administration Distortion. Brought to you by MoveOn.org.
It's the media's fault, BLAME THE MEDIA IS A MANTRA FOR BUMBLERS OF THE BUSH WHITE HOUSE. All those dead soldiers' families will feel so much better. It's not because our President and his entire administration lied us into war, no, it's the medias fault. This makes me think of that one Chris Rock stand up when he is talking about how it is the media that's blowing this crime thing all out of proportion. He then says it wasn't the media that stole my TV is was a ni#$er. So it isn't the media that's killing our soldiers. It's Iraqis who no longer want us in their country. I guess the question someone should ask these people is what would your idea be of things going bad in Iraq. I guess suicide bombers don't count, Suicide attacker detonates car bomb outside Turkish Embassy. But in case you need to feel better Rummy will sooth you with the truth, Think you're hearing spin? You're wrong.
Wired tells about Diebold and Georgia last November. See how corrupt the elections in this country are becoming. Did E-Vote Firm Patch Election?
This is interesting. Last week the Bush administration made a point of telling everyone they were going to start pointing out all the "good news" about Iraq. Now it looks like, as this White House is apt to do, they have gone too far. Check this out, FAKE 'GOOD NEWS' FROM IRAQ, War Party using the troops for propaganda. Well that's one way to do it. What kind of threats did they make to these guys to get them to sign this letter? Tie this back to the suicide article from my previous post. As if we needed more proof, this should leave no doubt that this administration will stop at nothing to win this war!
So just how did we get here you ask? Maybe this will help, Frontline: Truth, War and Consequences.
Here is a good synopsis of the Plame Affair so for, Valerie Plame Affair Not Forgotten. A couple of excerpts:
Plame's duties keep changing...William Rivers Pitt lets out his frustration. The Sins of September 11.
As each puny posturing of Sean Hannity, National Review Online, the Wall Street Journal and lesser rightwing lights has fallen prey to new disclosures, new posturing has arisen. After previously claiming that Plame might not be an agent, then shifting to claims she was never undercover, then shifting to claims she?’s isn?’t undercover now, then shifting to claims her exposure didn?’t endanger her or any other agents, the shifters' latest effort goes along these lines: We can?’t really know what damage might have been caused by her exposure, and neither could whichever high-level Administration official blew her cover; therefore, it was not the big deal partisans are making of it.
A remider of what would be happening if a "D" was in charge...
We would all be deaf by now if this outing had happened when Bill Clinton or any Democrat were in the White House. The rightwing pundits wouldn?’t be calling for a special prosecutor, they?’d be inciting a lynch mob to swing the "insidious traitors" who compromised America?’s security from the sturdiest tree on the lawn at 1600 Pennsylvania.
It looks like they want the President to take charge over the Vice President. So is this a confirmation of what people have been saying all along, that Cheney really is in charge? Senators: Bush Must Take Charge.
Time to inject a little reality. Army probes soldier suicides.
One more thing before I go for the weekend. I will quote two competing opinions. One is your President's opinion. The other is the opinion of someone who is in Baghdad. In the new PR blitz about Iraq on the American public we are being told that things are going better than we know. What do you think?
First, your President...See ya Monday!
In two appearances in New Hampshire, Bush said the situation is "much better" in Iraq than the American public has been led to believe by the news media.
"I acted because I was not about to leave the security of the American people in the hands of a madman," Bush told hundreds of troops and their families. (Who is the madman he is speaking of?)
"Who can possibly think that the world would be better off with Saddam Hussein still in power?" the president asked. "There is only one decent and humane reaction to the fall of Saddam Hussein: Good riddance."
...next the man in Baghdad...
But in fact the US has not given people a better life than the one they enjoyed under Saddam. An Iraqi businessman said acidly: "They claimed that we were smart enough to build weapons of mass destruction capable of threatening the world, but now they treat us like Red Indians on a reservation at the end of the 19th century.''
America was sure that its soldiers would be greeted by cheering crowds. Iraqi exiles in Washington had told them to expect no less, but if most Iraqis loathed Saddam it did not mean that they wanted to be occupied by a colonial regime. Many believed that their old leader had only survived in power through US support. They bitterly recalled their sufferings under international sanctions in the 1990s during which they lived in poverty while Saddam built grandiose palaces and mosques.
The most striking feature of the official US approach to the Iraqis is arrogance and ignorance. There were those in the state department who did know a lot about Iraq, but they were sidelined by the "neo-cons" and civilians in the Pentagon.
The most amazing achievement of six months of American occupation has been that it has even provoked nostalgia in parts of Iraq for Saddam. In Baiji, protesters were holding up his picture and chanting: "With our blood and with our spirit we will die for you Saddam.'' Who would have believed this when his statue was toppled just six months ago?
In the last few days Turkey has decided to send 10,000 troops into Iraq to help us out. There are a few interesting aspects to this story. One is that the Turkish government agreed to this even though the majority of their people are opposed to this. Another is that the Iraqi Governing Council (IGC) is opposed to this. It must be said that the IGC is not just opposed to Turkish troops but to troops from any neighboring nation. Anyone that is familiar with Iraqi history knows that the Kurds and Turks have been fighting with each other for years. The Kurds reside in northern Iraq on the Turkish border. So where do you think Turkey wants their troops to be stationed? In the north. Where do you thing the US want the Turkish stationed? West of Baghdad. So not only are we having problems with Turkey over where to station them our own puppet regime doesn't even want to go along. This just goes to show how ignorant our leadership is to the long standing rivalries in that area. So the question is why let Turkey send in troops? I have no idea but I sure hope it doesn't cause a war between the Kurds and Turks in northern Iraq.
In this editorial, The Mission, William Rivers Pitt shows how we have gotten to where we are. How we were transformed from the New Deal and Great Society to trickle down economics, Pax Americana and never ending war.
Some deep reading for the weekend if your game. Get familiar with how we, our government, are poisoning our soldiers. This article tells of depleted uranium and asks the question, Is The Pentagon Giving Our Soldiers Cancer?
Paul Krugman has done it again, Lessons in Civility.
A breakdown of the kickoff of the new "PR" campaign on the American people about Iraq, Bush's bad timing.
More of the media talking about only the negative in Iraq. Ambush kills 2 U.S. soldiers in Baghdad.
As the PR campaign about all the success in Iraq begins it appears that the media is once again focusing on the negative stories. Baghdad Suicide Bomber Kills 8.
Another person helps to expose the "big lie", Bush officials bend Iraq facts till they break.
Here's an idea, Impeach Bush now.
So does your president think the leaker will be exposed? It's hard to tell from this answer. Notice the parts in bold.
Q Mr. President, how confident are you the investigation will find the leaker in the CIA case? And what do you make of Sharon's comment that Israel will strike its enemies at any place, any time?I had to include that last one just for the term "suicider". I'm sure our government condoning Israel's bombing in Syria will help us with the Muslims. (By the way spellcheck wanted to replace suicider).
THE PRESIDENT: This is the dual question. (Laughter.) I'm trying to figure out if I want to answer either of them, since you violated a major rule. (Laughter.) At least it's not a cell phone. (Laughter.)
Randy, you tell me, how many sources have you had that's leaked information that you've exposed or have been exposed? Probably none. I mean this town is a -- is a town full of people who like to leak information. And I don't know if we're going to find out the senior administration official. Now, this is a large administration, and there's a lot of senior officials. I don't have any idea. I'd like to. I want to know the truth. That's why I've instructed this staff of mine to cooperate fully with the investigators -- full disclosure, everything we know the investigators will find out. I have no idea whether we'll find out who the leaker is -- partially because, in all due respect to your profession, you do a very good job of protecting the leakers. But we'll find out.
In terms of Prime Minister Sharon, I have constantly said Israel should defend herself. But I've also told -- as I mentioned to you at the press availability yesterday -- that it's important for the Prime Minister to avoid escalation, that the decisions he makes to defend her people are valid decisions. We would be doing the same thing. This country will defend our people.
But we are also mindful when we make decisions, as the Prime Minister should be, that the -- that he fully understand the consequences of any decision and that while he defends his people that there is not -- that he doesn't create the conditions necessary for -- that would cause the escalation -- the violence to escalate.
Another question, where he makes up a new term.
Q Did the strike on Syria -- did the strike on Syria cause an escalation?
THE PRESIDENT: The Prime Minister must defend his country. It's essential. This is a country which recently was attacked by a suicider that killed innocent children and women, people that were celebrating in a restaurant. And he must do what is necessary to protect himself. At the same time, as I said yesterday and will continue to say to Ariel Sharon, avoid escalating violence.
A Democrat finally asks for Rove's resignation, Conyers Calls For Rove's Resignation.
One mans interpretation of the Kay report. The Iraq Sanctions Worked.
Here we go, Executive Privilege Seen as Leak-Case Option.
This is a "right-wing" publication, Yes, Bush lied. Here is how is starts:
A year ago, on Oct. 1, one of the most important documents in U.S. history was published and couriered over to the White House.Now we all know this. We've known for some time now that Bush is a liar. But this is encouraging because the "right-wingers" are beginning to see it.
The 90-page, top-secret report, drafted by the National Intelligence Council at Langley, included an executive summary for President Bush known as the "key judgments." It summed up the findings of the U.S. intelligence community regarding the threat posed by Iraq, findings the president says formed the foundation for his decision to preemptively invade Iraq without provocation. The report "was good, sound intelligence," Bush has remarked.
Most of it deals with alleged weapons of mass destruction.
But page 4 of the report, called the National Intelligence Estimate, deals with terrorism, and draws conclusions that would come as a shock to most Americans, judging from recent polls on Iraq. The CIA, Defense Intelligence Agency and the other U.S. spy agencies unanimously agreed that Baghdad:
* had not sponsored past terrorist attacks against America,
* was not operating in concert with al-Qaida,
* and was not a terrorist threat to America.
"We have no specific intelligence information that Saddam's regime has directed attacks against U.S. territory," the report stated.
This report, MISPERCEPTIONS, THE MEDIA AND THE IRAQ WAR (.pdf format) is an eye opener. It shows that how you get your news determines whether you know the truth or not. Here is an excerpt:
The extent of Americans?’ misperceptions vary significantly depending on their source of news. Those who receive most of their news from Fox News are more likely than average to have misperceptions. Those who receive most of their news from NPR or PBS are less likely to have misperceptions. These variations cannot simply be explained as a result of differences in the demographic characteristics of each audience, because these variations can also be found when comparing the demographic subgroups of each audience.Another misperception debunked, Times Corrects Iraq Inspections Myth.
Is this the beginning of the end for Rumsfeld? Iraq Shake-up Skipped Rumsfeld. Here is the story about the new Iraq Stabilization Group, Rice heading new Iraq coordinating group. It seems a little strange that they would announce this while the Secretary of Defense is out of the country. Not to mention that as Rumsfeld said, "I was not there for the backgrounding." Today we hear about this, Bush launching campaign to defend Iraq war. So lets see, Rumsfeld is out of the loop, Condi is now running Iraq and instead of launching a new program or changing strategy in Iraq they are launching a "PR" offensive against the American people. I see, the soldiers dying (see Iraq Coalition Casualty Count) and the Iraqi people rioting for jobs and the problems with water and electricity are just bad publicity. Now that I see that is what's really wrong in Iraq well go ahead and appropriate the $87 billion. Sometimes you just have to marvel at how stupid we are.
Doesn't look like US leaders and the Iraqi Governing Council (IGC) are on the same page, Turkey to Deploy Troops in Defiance of New Iraqi Leaders, Turmoil Deepens.
OK let me see how this works. Spend $300 million and all you've found is a vial in a scientists fridge that has been there for 10 years, Revelation casts doubt on Iraq find . Now they want $600 million more to continue the search!? I got three stories on this: (1) Officials Say Bush Seeks $600 Million to Hunt Iraq Arms (2) Saddam's elusive weapons (3) Stories May Change, But The Perception Remains The Same. After reading all of this it seems to me that David Kay doesn't want to lose his job like so many other Americans. I think this is throwing good money after bad and agree with a couple points in the articles. First, the perception is already in peoples minds that weapons will not be found. Next, as with the Iraq reconstruction, to legitimize any find in the worlds opinion let the UN inspectors take over. This will also save us the extra $600 million. The one thing I take exception to is the crack about conspiracy theories in the last article, you know me. By the way, Kay may have an agenda, Survey Group head's link to arms industry.
I'm trying to wrap my brain around this. It seems that the main reason for the leak of Valerie Plame as a CIA operative was, if you hear the Bush administration apologists tell it, to show that Joe Wilson was probably sent to Niger by partisan anti-war supporters. Not as payback for exposing the truth. So to show how partisan a former ambassador is the White House has to commit a crime? None of this, of course, makes any reference to the truth. So we are supposed to believe that the truth is partisan. Think about that. For telling the truth this man and his family were put in danger because he told the truth. The president lies, the truth is told and the president endangers that persons family. I guess Mike Malloy calling them the "Bush Crime Family" is not so far off? This seems like something the Corleones would do. So what do we make of this. Well let's look at Bob Novak's history, Novak Leak Column Has Familiar Sound . Looks to me like Bob has made a living out of this sort of thing. See what former CIA officials think about all of this, A Sense of Betrayal. Two more things on this subject, a little perspective, New Watergate Soaks White House and from the Center for American Progress, a liberal attempt at a think tank, they show how the "Bush Crime Family" gets even. "Intimigate" Scandal at the White House. Here is an explanation of this document:
The Center for American Progress has released the attached is a one-page document detailing ?“Intimigate?”, the White House?’s latest scandal. As the document shows, the White House has developed a pattern of firing, intimidating and defaming anyone who has had the courage to tell the truth about Iraq. In fact, the Iraq policymakers whose influence has grown in the White House are largely those who parsed and distorted intelligence and misled the American people.Sorry I had to add this one, Outing a CIA operative? Rules call for special counsel.
And so it goes. 3 U.S. Soldiers Killed in Central Iraq.
It seems the press is still focusing on the bad in Iraq. Baghdad in Turmoil With Protests, Attack.
Go to Off The Kuff for your Texas redistricting news. I appears Tom DeLay was at the capitol yesterday.
The questions from Michael Moore yesterday were an extract from his new book, Dude, Where's My Country? That was the second installment of three in a series. I link all three installments below:
-The first installment in two parts: How to talk to your conservative brother-in-law and How to talk to your conservative brother-in-law (part two).
-Second installment: Answers please, Mr Bush.
-Third installment: Face it, you'll never be rich .
I have added a "Must Read" link. So far I have put up Bev Harris' Black Box Voting and The PNAC document. In light of this article, Computer Experts Fear Recall Voter Fraud, it becomes even more important to read Black Box Voting. Tell your friends, family, hell tell everyone about this. It transcends party. This goes to the heart of our democracy. This is about having your vote counted. One more artilcle on this from Wired, Time to Recall E-Vote Machines?
Greg Palast on Enron and Arnold, Arnold Unplugged - It's hasta la vista to $9 billion if the Governator is selected. A little clarification, Did Ken Lay and Arnold Schwarzenegger Collaborate to Screw Californians on Energy? Either way this appears to be about a little more than recalling a governor who has done a bad job.
Wow, there is so much going on today. It appears that more lies are being exposed. Not only did they lie about the WMD it appears they lied about Iraq being able to pay for the reconstruction, Report Offered Bleak Outlook About Iraq Oil. Here is an excerpt:
The task force, which was based at the Pentagon as part of the planning for the war, produced a book-length report that described the Iraqi oil industry as so badly damaged by a decade of trade embargoes that its production capacity had fallen by more than 25 percent, panel members have said.I love Wolfowitz he should be nicknamed "The Foot" because he sticks his foot in his mouth even more than the President.
Despite those findings, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul D. Wolfowitz told Congress during the war that "we are dealing with a country that can really finance its own reconstruction, and relatively soon."
Although this administration will never openly admit a mistake it is clear that is what this is, White House to Overhaul Iraq and Afghan Missions. They take all reconstruction power away from Rumsfeld and give it to the NSC and what has transpired was not wrong it's just there has now been, in Condoleezza's words, "a recognition by everyone that we are in a different phase now". What a joke. As we can now see all the pre-war assumptions were wrong and we are in deep and this is there latest attempt to save themselves.
Don't forget all the reports we've been hearing about how the press is just reporting the bad in Iraq and not the good. Well, I don't buy it, but even if I did how can you ignore stories like these: INSIDE THE SUNNI TRIANGLE, Iraqi raids fostering fresh enemies Once-supportive, critical villagers now openly Anti-American, Goodwill Suffers During a Pay Protest in Baghdad. Now in both of these articles it tells about how bad the conditions are in and around Baghdad. Things may be better in the North and South but that is just because they have been given more autonomy and there is less US presence. I feel very bad for the Iraqi people because they have been suffering for so long. I also feel very sorry for our troops that have been put in an impossible situation that was completely avoidable.
All of this and I haven't even gotten to the leak news yet. First the hypocrisy, Critics See White House Double Standard on Leaks. Then just the utter disregard for right and wrong, Fair Game. David Corn, one of the first to break the story, with and update, Of Lies and Leaks: Bush Threatened By New Revelations. I could go on for days posting links about this. So check these out and if you still want to read more just do a Google search on something like, "Wilson, Plame, leak".
I have to say something about Texas redistricting. For the latest go to Off The Kuff. Read this, Bickering may blow spot in Super Tuesday primaries for Texas. I have a take on this tidbit:
"If the primary is moved from March 2, Texas Democrats will have no voice in who will be the nominee of the Democratic Party," said state House Democratic Chairman Jim Dunnam of Waco.Other than that last part about moving elections lets think about this for a minute. Why do you think it is all of the sudden taking the Republicans so long to agree on a map? Well how does payback sound. For all the stalling the Democrats did we will move the primary and take away their ability to play a serious role in selecting a Presidential candidate. Maybe I'm going a little too far with this. Although, if they all of the sudden come up with a compromise once the primary is moved it might be worth remembering. (See FDR quote above).
Dunnam said most candidates will have been winnowed out of the race either before or on March 2.
"I'd like to have a voice in who is going to oppose George Bush," Dunnam said.
Rep. Garnet Coleman, D-Houston, described moving the primary as un-American.
"That's something that happens in other places," Coleman said. "We don't move elections in the United States of America to make room for power grabs."
Here are a couple on my pet peeve, the 9/11 (non)investigation: (Notice both of these were in British papers).
-Michael Moore, Answers please, Mr Bush.
-Why isn't the truth out there?
Folks I will be gone until Monday. I will post again then. Here are a few news items.
Bev Harris is a hero! She has not only researched and wrote a book about the voting machine problems. She is offering it for free at her web site. The first two chapters are out. Black Box Voting.
Outside Probe of Leaks Is Favored.
Critical US Energy Bill Crafted in Secrecy.
People Power, Another Rant on Little Caesar, the Doctor and the General, K Street and Fading Gray.
Washington Post article referenced in the above article, Empower Play: The Pitch That Works for Dean.
Check this one out, especially the author. International Cooperation in a Post September 11th World by Mikhail Gorbachev
OK, so it looks like we are on our way to a full blown scandal. Bob Novak is now trying to say that she was not an operative but an analyst. Outing an analyst is not a crime. Outing an operative is. So why would the CIA ask for an investigation and the Justice Department accept if there was no crime? So if she was an analyst and not an operative there would be no scandal, no investigation. To help clear this up see what a former coworker has to say about this, Plame's former classmate vents.
That said, I'm not sure anything will come of this. I am hopeful but I don't expect anything. Remember this happened in July. Why has it taken until now for this to come to light? It was noticed immediately by some, as noted yesterday. One answer is that back then Bush still had approval ratings then and that the "main stream" media was still scared of him. Now with the numbers down and Iraq going badly they think they can take him on now.
There have been those who believe that starting with the 2000 election the right has been trying to take what they can't get by election through other means. This article might help explain this, Electoral Politics Are Under Republican Attack.
Along those same lines, get all your Texas redistricting info here, Off The Kuff.
Welcome to George Bush's America! (I think this may become a daily feature).
-Reports: Ford, Chrysler plan job cuts.
The next investigation? Who Let Saudis Flee After 9/11?