Saturday, May 20, 2006


One Nation Under George

I finished Z.M. Wagner's satire about a week ago, but haven't had the time to write about it. I generally don't read political books; sorry Kos, sorry Glenn, sorry Dave. They make my eyes glaze over and roll back in my head, sort of like reading about economics. "How can you say that, being a political blogger of some (what kind is up to the judgment of the readers) repute?" you may ask. When I read, I want to be taken to exotic places, engage my imagination in adventurous ways. I can't read policy. That said, I was approached by Wagner's publicist to review this book and if it weren't humor I would have declined. I get my laughs in Blogtopia (yes! skippy coined that phrase!) from the likes of Jesus' General, WTF is it Now??, World O'Crap, Sadly, No!, and TBogg, and Wagner doesn't disappoint.

Wagner begins his story in 2008, as a Regular Joe ("a liberal Jewish man from the East Coast") looking back on the Bush Era. A few pages in, the smile grows on my face as he describes the Neocon/Republican/Bushista rise to power; the little push here, the keywords for the base there, always believing the propaganda. Always from the point of view of the uninformed who don't see Fox News for what it is.

He goes on, Wagner's best chapters in my opinion, explaining how school reform under Bush has transformed the public school system; individuality, violence, teen pregnancy, and drug abuse a thing of the past as accountability is stressed and demanded.

The Army, short on manpower, is also transformed, thanks to Rumsfeld's vision, and a new 'convict army' is sent to Iraq and Iran, avoiding a Draft and fulfilling the need for new recruits. In short, jail sentences served as infantrymen.

In the world of President George, every aspect of life is managed by the government, all to the benefit of the public good. Order is preserved, and the only places liberalism is practiced are in the ghettoes of New York and Massachusetts.

Wagner made me smile, and at the same time scared the living shit out of me. For those unfamiliar, imagine the world of Jesus' General as all too real, and then realize, should the power of the Neocon cabal remain unchecked, it very well could be.

I only had one complaint about the piece, and a minor one at that, and that was with the editing. It's probably more subjective on my part, but I've had experience with lazy editors in my own publishing career. I would most certainly recommend you drop the twelve bucks for a very entertaining fast read.


To my fellow New Yorkers, whether transplanted or homegrown, attending John McCain's commencement speech at the New School for standing up and making your voices heard.


Seth has MoDo.

Don't believe everything you hear...

About Iran. Ron looks at the Rethug disinformation campaign against Iran, no doubt to rile up the American public in preparation for war. I mean, did you know Iran has a Jewish (yes, I said Jewish) member of their parliament? He also links to a Juan Cole article you should read too.

Whaddya do with old bathtubs and microwaves?

Go immediately to The Disgruntled Chemist and click to see his Limey alter egos answer that burning question!

My Spring Break, Part 3 - Real Estate Shopping

Click to illarginate

One of the purposes of our trip was to investigate possible retirement locales. Here we are about to check out some affordable homesites in a "Gated Community". For Liberals, perhaps?

Read the backstory here and here.

Tongue way in cheek...

Beer? Nein! Paint Thinner? Ja!

From the Times(UK):

IT IS brown-gold and alcoholic but, then, in the scathing verdict of German beer fans, so is paint thinner.

The Germans are furious that Budweiser will be the official tipple for the World Cup, which starts next month. The American lager has secured a near-monopoly of beer sales inside World Cup stadiums and within a 500m radius of the grounds, supplanting more than 1,270 domestic breweries.

And what most upsets the fans is that Budweiser - advertised as the "King of Beers" in the US - fails to meet the ancient German standards for purity, which stipulate that beer can be brewed only from malt, hops and water. Budweiser uses rice in its production process and therefore does not qualify as a beer in the German sense.

Budweiser's World Cup status is a slap in the face for a country that attaches such importance to beer production. When Germany was a patchwork of principalities and duchies, a sponsored brewery was seen as the stamp of independence. German pride at hosting the tournament is being dented by the fierce marketing of the American beer.

Go read the rest. If I was a German, I'd be pissed-off too. I've always thought most mass-produced American beer could be improved by runnin' it through the horse one more time.

This could mean war!


It's a happy day in Connecticut!

To the stunned amazement of most Lieberman supporters, Ned Lamont racked up over a third of the votes cast at tonight's Democratic Convention in Hartford's decidedly downscale Expo Center. (Is that the best Joe's millions can do, Nancy?)


Friday, May 19, 2006

I got the blues...

Or at least the country does.

The Balloon Seems To Be Descending Rapidly...

Paul Krugman, via Nevada Thunder, on the stock market, housing, gas prices, working stiffs and the general brick wall facing our high-speed economy.

The rise in stock prices that began last fall was essentially based on the belief that the U.S. economy can defy gravity - that both individuals and the nation as a whole can spend more than their income, not on a temporary basis, but more or less indefinitely.

To be fair, for a while the data seemed to confirm that belief. In 2005, the trade deficit passed $700 billion, yet the dollar actually rose against the euro and the yen. Housing prices soared, yet houses kept selling. The price of gasoline neared $3 a gallon, yet consumers kept buying both gas and other items, even though they had to borrow to keep spending (the personal savings rate went negative for the first time since the 1930's).

Over the last few weeks, however, gravity seems to have started reasserting itself.

That's one law even Bush can't break for very long.

I can't resist pointing out that the Bush administration's response to the squeeze on working families has been, you guessed it, to accuse the news media of biased reporting.

As I summarized it awhile back, we became a nation in which people make a living by selling one another houses, and they pay for the houses with money borrowed from China.

Now that game seems to be coming to an end. We're going to have to find other ways to make a living - in particular, we're going to have to start selling goods and services, not just I.O.U.'s, to the rest of the world, and/or replace imports with domestic production. And adjusting to that new way of making a living will take time.

Just like Iraq, economic sanity will probably be left to the next president. Or at least to the next one that has his eyes open.

Bowing To The Police State

Ray McGovern at TomPaine.

Is Congress aiding and abetting the creation of a police state? Recently, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Pete Hoekstra, R-Mich., helped to give the CIA and NSA unprecedented police powers. By inserting a provision in the FY07 Intelligence Authorization Act, Hoekstra has undermined the existing statutory limits on involvement in domestic law enforcement. This comes after revelations in January of direct NSA involvement with the Baltimore police in order to "protect" the NSA Headquarters from Quaker protesters.

Add to this, the disquieting news that the White House has been barraging the CIA with totally improper questions about the political affiliation of some of its senior intelligence officers, the ever widening use of polygraph examinations, and the FBI's admission that it acquires phone records of broadcast and print media to investigate leaks at the CIA. I, for one, am reminded of my service in the police state of the U.S.S.R., where there were no First or Fourth Amendments.

Like the proverbial frog in slowly boiling water, we have become inured to what goes on in the name of national security. Recent disclosures about increased government surveillance and illegal activities would be shocking, were it not for the prevailing outrage-fatigue brought on by a long train of abuses. But the heads of the civilian, democratically elected institutions that are supposed to be our bulwark against an encroaching police state, the ones who stand to lose their own power as well as their rights and the rights of all citizens, aren't interested in reining in the power of the intelligence establishment. To the contrary, Rep. Hoekstra and his counterpart at the Senate, Pat Roberts, R.-Kan., are running the risk of whiplash as they pivot to look the other way.

When the writers of the Constitution envisioned a separation of powers to ensure checks and balances in our government, they were relying on the leaders of those branches to fight to maintain their own power within the system. Fresh from the struggle against King George, they could not have predicted that some of our leaders would voluntarily sign away their own rights to another George who would be king.

Good article. Go read.

My Spring Break, Part 2 - Mother's Day

Click to embiggen

Last Sunday, Mother's Day, found us in the high country of Eastern California in the town of Benton (Pop. 164, Elev. 5317) when lunchtime rolled around. In honor of Mrs. G's many years of outstanding and resigned mothering to me and our pups, I decided that nothing was too good for her and blew her to a big feed at what I can positively guarantee was the finest restaurant in town. Reservations were not necessary. I had the Ortega Burger with Swiss and Fries. Mrs. G went for the Mushroom/Swiss combo and shared my Fries. Damn good burgers, cooked by the Native American lady who owns the joint. Her husband and I discussed real estate prices and other man stuff while she did all the work. I think them Injuns are onto something there!

As so often happens when I am enjoying myself, the cops showed up during our meal. There must have been something big afoot of an interstate nature, because there was a Mono County (CA) deputy and one from Mineral County (NV). They chatted awhile and drove away. You have to be big and strong to be a rural cop. These guys were carrying enough personal gear to wage a small war. I guess they have to be able to hold the fort by themselves in case of trouble, as their backup might be an hour away.

The cafe had a "Convenient Store" (that's what it said on the sign) attached. Small, but you could live out of it in a pinch. Not much junk food, but enough first aid supplies and auto parts to get you to civilization. Biggest jars of jalapenos I ever saw. A pretty good Native American jewelry selection as well. Mrs. G loves that stuff. I'm thinking of installing a winch on the pickup to get her out of those places...

The joint was obviously the town meeting place, where we were privileged to overhear the news of the day: "There was a shooting in Chalfant last night. Deputy so-and-so turned off his lights and the guy walked right into the side of his car...". Honest. I couldn'ta made that up, I swear!

Speaking of "reservations" and "holding the fort", there is a Native American presence and heritage all around this part of the country. There is a Paiute-Shoshone Cultural Center in Bishop, which was closed while we were there, as well as a popular local attraction, which was open.

After the way fun and interesting lunch we did stuff too, but enough for now.

Overtaxed National Guard To Use Illegal Immigrants To Guard Mexican Border

Tongue firmly in cheek, I direct you to Opinions You Should Have.

The National Guard, hard-pressed to keep up with its many duties at Iraq and at home, has decided to guard the U.S.-Mexico border with illegal immigrants it enlists as they come across the border. "We see it as a very special guest worker program," explained Guard Commander Sergeant Leon Rocknard.

"Once I learned that we'd be mostly cooking and cleaning, the idea came naturally," he said. He added that another upside of the program was that the workers could be paid "almost nothing." He further justified his decision by insisting that guarding the border was "one of those jobs Americans want done but don't want to do themselves."

Herminio Vasquez, an illegal immigrant who became part of the program after swimming the Rio Grande at 4:00 a.m. last night, praised the plan. "This is the just the opportunity I came to the U.S. for," he said.

Sometimes it's hard to tell irony and satire from the truth these days.

Cosmic Cowboy Music

This is an FYI for those of you with the impeccable musical taste to enjoy "the California Country sound". I never heard of I See Hawks In L.A. before, but I ran across this review at Blue State Jukebox. Sounds good. I'll probably pick it up.

Friday Cattle Dog Blogging

Princess Shayna gives the 101st Fighting Keyboarders a Bronx Cheer.

"My dad was a real warrior, you panty-waist weenies," she was heard to say.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Thanks for telling us

You couldn't have said something in '01? Whoring bitch.

Still With Fox

This is pretty lightweight shit, but it's fun. From News Hounds.

During yesterday's press gaggle (5/17), new Press Secretary and supposed former Fox News employee Tony Snow, referred to ABC in response to a reporter's questions as a "competing network".

Snow: "Well, as I pointed out -- I mentioned this yesterday, and for -- let me see if I can find my quote, because I pulled it out. Chuck Hagel, as you may recall, made a fair amount of news over the weekend when he first said that -- let's see -- "Well, I want to listen to the details and I want to listen to the President," said Senator Hagel -- he said this on "This Week" on a competing network. But I would say this: I think we have to be very careful here. That's not the role of our military, that's not the role of our National Guard." That's what Senator Hagel said on Sunday."

Is Snow still on Fox's payroll? Is ABC "competing" in someway with the Administration? Or has Fox and the Bush Administration finally merged into one entity?

The video can be viewed here.

Perhaps it was just a slip of the tongue? As one of News Hounds' many commenters puts it:

As far as everybody on Faux news is concerened, a slip of the tongue is their stock in trade. A slip right up the asses of this administration.

Couldn't have put it better myself!

'Alpha Male on the Cruise Ship'

Robert Parry on the Chimp's smartass mouth. At Consortium News.

He was like the wise-cracking guy leading a pack of vacationers out of the elevator toward the all-you-can-eat buffet bar, while poking fun at Charlie for getting too much sun on his bald head or at Mildred for putting on a few extra pounds. The others in the group titter with nervous amusement, fearing their ribbing will come next.

Like that dominant male on the cruise ship, Bush exhibits a freedom to mock the appearance of almost anyone, holding up both American citizens and foreign leaders to public ridicule for how they look.

Bush exhibits other physical alpha-male tendencies, such as when he greets another man by cupping his hand behind the man's neck, a sign of both affection and control.

Damn fine way to get to break his arm if anybody had the stones.

Other times, Bush goes beyond playful banter and just tongue-lashes people who have gotten on his wrong side.

In 1986, for instance, Bush spotted Wall Street Journal political writer Al Hunt and his wife Judy Woodruff having dinner at a Dallas restaurant with their four-year-old son. Bush was steaming over Hunt's prediction that Jack Kemp - not then-Vice President George H.W. Bush - would win the Republican presidential nomination in 1988.

Bush stormed up to the table and cursed Hunt out. "You [expletive] son of a bitch," Bush yelled. "I saw what you wrote. We're not going to forget this." [Washington Post, July 25, 1999]

If anyone I like as little as Bush cusses like that in front of my wife, he's gonna get his lights punched out in front of God and everybody, right then and there.

While always ready to deliver insults, the Bush family is famously thin-skinned about receiving them. For instance, George H.W. Bush restricted Newsweek's coverage of his 1988 presidential campaign after the magazine published a cover photo of Bush with the headline, "Fighting the Wimp Factor."

His eldest son, George W. Bush, doesn't even want to take chances with unfriendly audiences. He routinely has his advance teams and Secret Service details weed out people from his speeches who might be inclined to heckle him or ask hostile questions.

Indeed, between his pre-screened crowds and his layers of protectors, Bush has gone through five-plus-years as President with barely a single note-worthy incident of anyone challenging him to his face.

Unlike alpha males in the wild, Bush has managed to mark out his territory knowing that virtually nobody - not another head of state nor a private citizen - is in any position to contest his supremacy.

That's really a shame. With half the secret Service protecting him, he's like a Chimp in a zoo throwing feces, knowing no one can get to him. Once, just once, I'd like to see someone (Pick Me! O, please God, pick Me!) get through his defense cordon, poke him in the chest repeatedly and tell him in no uncertain terms what they think of him. I bet he'd hide behind his mother's skirts and cry. If he rose up on his hind legs like a man, better yet.

There's folks who put it a lot better than I do at "Readers React".

My Spring Break, Part 1 of ...

Click to embiggen

U.S. Route 6 starts in Bishop CA and doesn't stop until it runs out of U.S. When I was a kid, it started in Long Beach and ran from sea to shining sea, thus proving that things shrink as they get older. Tell me about it! It is also known as "The Grand Army of the Republic Highway".

Someone either is still sore about the outcome of the Civil War or doesn't like Northeastern Libruls, or both. Note the bullet hole just below the "3205 Miles". Actually, that's not too bad for a Western road sign in deer hunting country. It looks like it's way out in the country, but the business district of Bishop starts about a hundred feet behind where I stood to take the picture. A disgruntled employee at the Ford dealer, perhaps?

New face, same horseshit

Bob Geiger:

Having worked at Fox News prior to his appointment as the new White House Press Secretary, Tony Snow is accustomed to making the case for George W. Bush. So he seemed to avoid the first-day jitters in his initial day of full-time lying for a living. Snow held his first solo press briefing yesterday and, while watching him bob, weave and answer few questions, it was almost as if Scott "The Lyin' King" McClellan never retired to the GOP fibbers hall of fame.


Did anybody seriously think anything would change? Did the White House Press Corpse think this administration would finally be a little more forthcoming? The only thing that did change was that Tony the Liar is easier on the eyes* than that little troll Snotty.

Also, if you're interested in all the gory detals, our esteeemed colleague Holden is obsessed with the daily gaggle and brings highlights.

*By a very thin margin.

Trickle down

Didn't work for Reagan, it surely won't work for these inept nitwits. Bush signed that fucking tax cut yesterday. If you're waiting for this to be good for the economy, don't hold your breath. You sure as hell ain't getting shit up front and the people who are will still be buying new Hummers next year. Here's how it breaks down; read 'em and weep.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

The Rich really are different...

Click to un-weeny

We have been having to stop for this for a month now on our every-coupla-weeks-or-so shopping trips to Carson City. On our way home from vacation I finally had a camera with me.

There are a lot of rich people at Lake Tahoe, but "Income Village" has more than its share. (Note: a lot of the year-round folks are there to service the richies when they deign to come to town.) Nevada goes real easy on personal and corporate taxes is one reason, so a lot of folks either relocate there or maintain second homes. Go see what their idea of a "vacation cabin" is like.

Are you back? OK, get yer jaw up off yer chest and wipe the spittle off yer shirt. Thought I was kiddin' about those folks havin' moolah, eh? Ha! Kinda makes me wonder what they have to do to other people to get a pad like that for a second home!

Ben, Adam, Hoss, Li'l Joe and Hop Sing used to call IV home, but they cashed out last year.

What this project is, is diggin' up the highway to put in a sewer. There's no wastewater treatment at North Lake Tahoe, so it's for shipping it elsewhere. The folks on the California side send theirs up over a mountain to get it to a plant in my town. I applied for a job there once, and they showed me a pair of swim fins and a stick...Seriously, it's a world-class facility and people come from all over the world to see it. But I digress.

Here's my point: Reg'lar folks flush the toilet, etc., and their sewage is pumped to a shit plant.

The Affluent have effluent and it's exported. If not to the reg'lar folks' neighborhood where it can be turned into sewage and pumped, then I bet it's goin' someplace nice. We should probably be grateful for the rose-y smell of money!

Same ol' shit.

Rove Update

Here's a coupla updates on the Rove indictment as reported the other day.


The Wall Street Journal

Mr. Luskin, who has handled other high-profile cases, says blogs have made cases like the CIA leak case "an order of magnitude uglier and more personal."

Fuck up my country as bad as he and his have done, you damn right it's personal. What Luskin calls 'ugly' I call 'justice is a thing of beauty'. Eye of the beholder and all that.

Still lookin' OK I'd say, but we must have patience, as much as that hurts!

West Point Grads Against The War

Just go see.

Incompetence Is Simply a Byproduct of Something Far More Sinister

Bob Johnson (Snarky aside: I wonder if his middle name is 'Oliver'. As in "Bob Oliver this Johnson, Bush!")

I don't think the Bush administration is incompetent, in the pure sense of the word, as so many pundits have claimed. Everytime I read that charge, it doesn't sit right in my mind.

No, that's not the whole of it, I think. Their particular brand of incompetence is an outgrowth of something else - something far more sinister. If those who populate this administration, along with their co-conspirators in Congress, were simply happy-go-lucky fools, the incompetence tag would hang on them like a too-big suit. They'd wear incompetence like a pair of oversized clown shoes.

Osama's escape, the Iraq Debacle, Katrina, Medicare D... The list of incompetent actions and policies stretches on for miles, as far as the eye can see on a flat, blazing hot desert road.

Incompetence? Sure. But only because, fundamentally, they do not give a flying fuck about America or its citizens. (Nevermind how little they think of the citizens of the rest of the world.) They care only of themselves - and money. Simple, really.

he deficit is no accident. It is the ultimate manifestation of Norquist's dream. Cheney and company (through their idiotic puppet and perfect foil, George Bush) paint the government as incompetent while bankrupting the federal treasury and lining the pockets of everyone from Halliburton to the religious right.

The Bush years have been nothing less than a criminal enterprise. Organized crime. Thievery on a scale never before witnessed in the history of humankind. Billions upon billions of taxpayer dollars looted from the national treasury and delivered to the pockets of the well-connected. (Tax relief? For whom?)

The NSA spying program was never about ferreting out terrorist plots. We knew that. It was simply another tool to be used to stop any person or entity which sought to uncover their criminal cabal. And the Patriot Act is more of the same. This crew will stop at nothing to protect their criminal enterprise.

So I wish the Paul Krugmans of the world would stop letting Cheney et. al. off so easy with the "incompetent" tag.

He's right. There's a lot of just plain incompetence in the mid-levels of this administration, such as FEMA and TSA, but it's by design from above.

It will be a grand day when the MSM starts referring to the "criminal enterprise", but I'm not holding my breath waiting for them to grow the sack to do so.

No comment necessary


No, Tony - let me remind You. I'm a fucking American citizen and a human being. The government has no, let me repeat, NO fucking business collecting information on my phone calls or listening to my phone calls - especially without a warrant. Just because President My Penis, Mightier Than the Sword thinks he's James Fucking Bond with a Bat-phone to God doesn't mean that anyone in this administration gets to listen in when I call the bank/doctor/pharmicist/therapist/Tom Delay's gay ex-lover.

And if you macho men think you can drag your filthy fingers thru America's private lives in an attempt to intimidate the Press, well... you can go fuck yourselves from here to Peru and back. "Constitutional obligation"? Go piss up a rope, Tony. Your boss couldn't pass a Jr. High Civics exam if you filled the answers in and asked him to write his name on the top of the paper, so don't try wrapping a red, white and blue ribbon around your cock before you skull-fuck the press. You know, the guys and gals who are asking you questions while the NSA is rifling thru their phone records to see if somebody with a fucking soul decided to say "Enough is enough!" and call them?


Link via Athenae.

Just shut up

Okay, I'll probably piss off some of my neighbors with this, but I'm tired of the 9/11 families inserting themselves into the WTC planning. You gave your input on the memorial, probably more than you had a right to, now just shut the fuck up. We have a 16 acre hole in the fucking ground going on 5 years now. Your loved ones will be memorialized, that's set in stone. Stop trying to spend the city's money like it's yours. If you keep this up, the memorial is gonna cost $1bn by itself.

A state supreme court judge dismissed a lawsuit brought by 9/11 families who wanted to preserve the footprints of the towers.

The families had accused the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, the agency in charge of the design, of not consulting with them, which is required by state law.


They are not gonna make 16 acres of the most valuable real estate in the world your private memorial park. Ain't gonna happen. The city and the Port Authority stand to make too much from the land. It's time to accept what you're gonna get.

It's like my aunt. My cousin passed away 15 years ago from malignant melanoma in his late 20s. My aunt has turned his room into a shrine and her life stopped the day he died. For 15 years, she's spent her time memorializing him in some form or another. It's not healthy, people have to move on, and it's the same for 9/11 families. For your own sakes, don't let this consume you. If 9/11 and the memorial to the dead becomes your entire life, you're not going to have any life. Ask my aunt. All her friends have moved on and all she's left with are memories and depression. And a little room at the end of the hall where she spends her days reliving the past.

It's time to accept this and move on, for all our sakes.

Joe who?

Maybe Joe and Hadassa can visit Israel next spring. 'Next year in Jerusalem' is a common saying in my family. He'll certainly have the time.


First prominent women in the Connecticut pro-choice community came together to form Connecticut Choice Voice for the express purpose of backing Lamont. Then Carolyn Treiss, current head of NARAL-CT, came out in support of Ned. And now the National Organization for Women has endorsed him, too.


Sorry, Joe, but the good folks of Connecticut aren't gonna let you pee on them and call it rain anymore. As the game show hosts say: "So sorry, you're out of time, buh-bye."

For those who don't know about Ned Lamont, let me introduce you.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Supporting the troops

Which senators and congresspeople really support our disabled veterans? It ain't the ones in the 'party of national security'. Easy to read chart.

Great thanks to fellow vet Farnsworth for the link.

I have PTSD

And I don't take myself this seriously...


I think all three [conservatives who have broken ranks with Bush over runanway deficit spending or his immigration policy] may be suffering some variant of PTSD, worn down by defending difficult positions at the forefront of the battle against irredentist Democrats in Congress and their fifth-column in the media.

Pull up your pants and go outside, you loser.

Thanks to Digby for the link.

Another reason we need to know the truth about technology and how it's being used...

Voting.Yes,I know,this isn't a glamorous story,why it's even tin foil hatty to some people.But here's the thing:

There shouldn't even BE a question in regards to the process we use to vote.And if there is,anywhere in this country,a question as to the integrity of the voting(and voter registration)process,people of all political stripes should be demanding answers and and there should be transparency.This is not hard to do,and there are plenty of people willing to volunteer to help out.This isn't a partisan issue,it's about us,all of us,being good citizens.And if you say you love America,well hell,what's more American than the premise that every adult person who wants to can vote?

Now,read this and then go watch this.(this last link is an old flash video,but it's a nice little mini crash course.It leaves out stuff like the "Brooks Brothers riots" and other assorted dirty tricks in FL,but again,ANY question of what's going on with our voting shouldn't even BE.Anyone who refuses to support that concept is suspect,and certainly doesn't have our best interests at heart.)

Big Buisnesses can NOT be trusted to do the right thing unless they are closely watched.They just won't.They prove it over and over and over daily.They are not loyal to Country first,it's Money they serve.Being loyal to one's Company and Party above all else is NOT American.Trusting technology and those who buy and sell it to run our voting system is a bad idea.We need to go backwards,to the way it was before this madness took over.Until we can find more streamlined ways that don't involve big bidness.Americans are supposed to be creative and innovative,this isn't rocket science.

I don't know folks,I think our wisdom as human beings hasn't kept up very well with our technological advances.There's the NSA thing, connections to monitoring what's left of our so called"journalists"(which would explain alot,frankly.I think people are being blackmailed with stuff like their porn habits,evidence of affairs,maybe even medical or mental health info),which probably is also going to lead to stuff coming out about spying on political rivals(same blackmail theory applies there,and it does make sense when you pair that up with certain people's behavior),and then you add in the voting thing,I gotta wonder.Is all this stuff that's supposed to make life easier really a curse,or even leading to our own downfall in some ways?

I call for revolution!

Why not? Specter caved. What do we have to lose anymore?

B@B link thanks to Avedon Carol.

About fucking time

LUXEMBOURG (AP) -- Armed with key concessions from Germany, an 11-nation commission convened Tuesday to finalize arrangements to open a vast archive documenting the death, enslavement or oppression of 17 million Jews, Roma and others deemed undesirable to the Nazi regime.

The move to unlock the storehouse of some 50 million files in the German town of Bad Arolsen comes under pressure from the dying generation of Holocaust survivors and victims' families who fear their histories will be lost forever unless the rules are changed for accessing the files.


Now, all of you Holocaust deniers can shove it up your collective ass. I'm German. I know how anal we can get with record keeping. This should prove once and for all how many died; where, when, and how. I'm tired of these people saying it didn't happen. I've been to the camps, and it sickens me that my people could do something so horrible (lately, I believe Americans are just as capable), but the record has to be available for all to see, hopefully preventing this from ever happening again.

Great thanks to memeorandum for the link.

Liquid Alert:

Put down or swallow the coffee, juice, milk, bourbon, whatever, before you read Athenae's live blog of the Chimp's speech.





Now that we know the government is spying on the news media, what are these 'news organizations' gonna do? Personally, were it me at the head of MSNBC or CNN, I'd devote every fucking minute of programming to this story, bashing the American people over the head with it until they get it. Do you think anyone over at CNN ever read this?

When they came for they came for the mentally retarded, I did not speak up.
When they came for the gypsies, I did not speak up.
When they came for the artists, the writers, singers,I did not speak up.
When they came for me, there was no one to speak for me!

Just in case you've forgotten, you're the people who have the voice. We can yell all we want, but you've helped the Rethugs frame us as 'the angry Left' and most take us with a grain of salt. It's time for you to stand up because guess what? The way it looks, they're gonna come for you before they come for me. They know where to find you. To get me, they're gonna suffer casualties. Think about it, Wolf, Timmy, Lou. There's a target on your backs and you don't even know it. Time to fight back or you'll be silenced permanently. I thought you guys were supposed to be smarter than I am?


Later, Holy Joe:


So I was extremely heartened to see that Carolyn Treiss, head of Connecticut NARAL, has joined the Connecticut Choice Voice organization that is endorsing Ned Lamont. A lot of women in the Connecticut pro-choice community were mortified when they discovered that Nancy Keenan and national NARAL had been telling their membership to thank Holy Joe for blackening their eye (information that was largely promulgated by the blogs) and as a result Connecticut Choice Voice was formed. It's really wonderful to see Carolyn Treiss getting out in front of this and showing the kind of leadership in her state that is going to be necessary if groups like NARAL and Planned Parenthood are ever to be trusted again to be the guardians of choice once again.


Looks like my good neighbors to the north are opening their eyes.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Spreadin' Manure...

Following up on this post about the USDA promoting Iraq, go see Slowpoke.

Dixie Chicks: Not Ready to Make Nice

The Dixie Chicks on 60 Minutes. No quotes - I'm lazy. Just go read.

President Gore on SNL

I was gonna link ya to this hilarious video of Al Gore earlier in the day but YouTube took it down. It's ba-ack! If it ain't right on top, scroll down 'til ya get to it.

Thanks to iFlipFlop.

Eating their own

And so it begins...

Up yours, Amerikanskiy

I was reading the dead tree version of The Finacial Times when I came across this. When we sanction rendition to commit torture, incarcerate others without charge or cause, and look the other way when our people commit abuses, you can't go lecturing the Russians about theirs.

From Mr Dmitry Peskov.

Sir, In your editorial "The dangers of crying 'Comrade Wolf" (May 11), you write that President Vladimir Putin "worryingly" used his annual address to the Federal Assembly to jab back at Dick Cheney's hawkish remarks in a way that bodes ill for co-operative results at the Group of Eight summit in St Petersburg in July. Gone, you say, is the language of partnership.

You claim that Mr Putin's "hawkish foreign policy rhetoric" will make compromises with the US less likely.

In fact, the President's remarks were an extremely restrained retort to a speech by Mr Cheney that was described by many commentators as the most ferocious and unreasonable attack on Russia since the cold war. It should surely be welcomed that the Russian president did not rise to the bait and trigger a spiral of pointless mutual recriminations.

You rightly state that on the major issues of the day Russia and the US are not diametrically opposed. Let us build on the consensus that exists, and aim for a successful G8 summit in July.

Dmitry Peskov,
Deputy Spokesman to the President
of the Russian Federation,
Kremlin, Moscow [my em]


I thought we're only monitoring 'terrists'?

ABC's Brian Ross and Richard Esposito Report:

A senior federal law enforcement official tells ABC News the government is tracking the phone numbers we call in an effort to root out confidential sources.


Other sources have told us that phone calls and contacts by reporters for ABC News, along with the New York Times and the Washington Post, are being examined as part of a widespread CIA leak investigation.


Time to storm the gates.

Damn lies...

Ol' Froth points up a factoid that seemed to get muddled in all the other controversy:

When news first broke that the NSA was listening in on calls, Bush said it was being done with warrants.

The agency, they said, still seeks warrants to monitor entirely domestic communications.

That was a lie.


We don't need...

Dems like this:

Leading Democrats tell the New York Times that it would be better if the party doesn't win in the fall --- and if it has the sad misfortune to do so, it would be better off not holding any investigations into the Bush administration.

And if, somehow, the party does unfortunately win and "the loud left" insists that the party holds Bush responsible for his misdeeds against the wishes of these wise men, we already know Democrats will be like the Republicans in 1996 who lost seats because they shut down the government and like Republicans in 1998 because they impeached Bill Clinton. (Lord knows the Republicans have suffered in the wilderness ever since then.)


This is why the [Democratic] establishment is becoming irrelevant. It isn't a game to us hicks out here in America. These are our lives these people are talking about.

It's time to quit playing politics and start practicing leadership. The Repukes have been in power for five years. They own everything fucked up about America. This is our best opportunity in a long time and you don't want it? I swear, if you guys fuck this up, there's gonna be a viable Third Party by the time 2008 rolls around, even if I have to go bankrupt financing it. It's getting to the point where I'm gonna run for President, or at least a Senate seat, skeletons in the closet be damned.

If these assholes don't want to be leaders, what the fuck are they doing in Washington anyway? It's time to stand up and do the right thing, because if I have anything to say on the subject, there will be term limits for Congress sooner rather than later. Incumbency has ruined the lot of you. It isn't a game, morons. People are dying and being ruined and you guys sit back, ruminating about the safest way to play it. Fuck you all, I've had it with the lot of you. Get off the pot and do something before we decide to do it for you.

Ansel Adams Manzanar Collection

This is a cleanup. Last night when I did my Manzanar post I was very tired and somehow I forgot to put in a premier collection of photos of the camp in its heyday by California hero, Ansel Adams.

Go here for the overview and then scroll down and/or click "Collection Highlights" and go from there. Those photos are a short intro. For more, go here, click either link, scroll down to 'subjects' and have at it. It's a little screwy, I know, but that's the Library of Congress for ya.

I would have been remiss not to do this, but that oughta hold my "Injustice Jones" at bay for a while. Maybe.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Shorter Laura

On Little George:

We're liberating the women of the world so American women can stay home, get pregnant, and spit out rugrats until their husbands lose interest. And then they become librarians.

Frank Rich


The N.S.A. eavesdropping exposed in December by James Risen and Eric Lichtblau of The Times is another American debacle. Hoping to suggest otherwise and cast the paper as treasonous, Dick Cheney immediately claimed that the program had saved "thousands of lives." The White House's journalistic mouthpiece, the Wall Street Journal editorial page, wrote that the Times expose "may have ruined one of our most effective anti-Al Qaeda surveillance programs."

Surely they jest. If this is one of our "most effective" programs, we're in worse trouble than we thought. Our enemy is smart enough to figure out on its own that its phone calls are monitored 24/7, since even under existing law the government can eavesdrop for 72 hours before seeking a warrant (which is almost always granted). As The Times subsequently reported, the N.S.A. program was worse than ineffective; it was counterproductive. Its gusher of data wasted F.B.I. time and manpower on wild-goose chases and minor leads while uncovering no new active Qaeda plots in the United States. Like the N.S.A. database on 200 million American phone customers that was described last week by USA Today, this program may have more to do with monitoring "traitors" like reporters and leakers than with tracking terrorists. [my ems]


Seth has it all.

Axis of Feeble

I get the dead-tree version of The Economist at the house.

The cover.

The article.

Zealots and Morons and Nukes...

Pauly gives a thwap to a wanker.

Part 1
Part 2

Happy Mother's Day

All the best to all the moms out there.

Pic (click to embiggen) thanks to Sumo.


My mom is gone 10 years this July and I'm thinking about her this morning saying, "Thank God she wasn't alive to see what the Chimp has done to this country." She would have been sent to Gitmo by now. To see similarities between her beloved adopted nation and the Germany she left behind after the war, she would have started a revolutionary cell. I swear, my mom was a tough old broad and she wouldn't take shit from anybody. One of the things she loved the most about America were the freedoms and to see what the Chimp has taken from us would have made her fighting mad. I still love ya, ma, and I hope I have enough of your fire to do what I have to if the time comes.