Saturday, June 9, 2007

Close the wallet ...

Our favorite roo, Skippy of course, brings us this action alert. Don't give Dems money until they do what we sent 'em to Congress to do.


just yesterday skippy received a call from the "democratic finance committee." once the caller identified whom he was representing, skippy told him in no uncertain terms, "you guys really screwed up on the iraq funding withdrawl vote. i'm not giving you guys another cent until you get that right."

and he hung up.


Nobody's gettin' shit from me until the Chimp is out.

Pace Fired Because He Balked at Iran

leveymg at Kos

This isn't good news.


I've been writing for over a year now that the Joint Chiefs have been blocking the White House's efforts to expand the war to Iran. No matter what you might think of Gen. Pete Pace, this really is TERRIFYING news, unless you crave a wider war in the Persian Gulf and South Asia.

Pace has been the most visible symbol of the push-back within the military against the Long War.

MORE below . . .

More below. Doesn't sound good.

If this is true, and it sounds plausible given the track record of this administration regarding loyalty v. reality, I partially apologize to Gen. Pace for my comments in my previous post. He may have grown back some sack. Not in time. Too little, too late.

Al Qaeda Banks On Bush

Jim Hightower

Poor George W. Except for his cohort, "Buckshot" Cheney, no one really likes his Iraq policy – not the generals, not the troops dying for it, not the people of Iraq, not his fellow Republicans, and certainly not the American public.

But wait – there is one group that is ecstatic about what he's doing there: al Qaeda! Yes, Osama bin Laden's network of terrorists. Remember him? He's responsible for the 9/11 attack on the U.S., and Bush himself promised in 2001 to "smoke him out." But then George, Buckshot, and Rummy decided to forget him and divert our military to Iraq, so bin Laden is still on the loose.

To get congress and the public to accept their nonsensical detour, the Bushites claimed that al Qaeda had a presence in Iraq. That turns out to have been another of their little fibs, but guess what? Thanks to Bush's invasion and occupation of this Muslim nation, al Qaeda now has a great big pressence there. They've been able to recruit thousands of mostly-young men to go to Iraq and fight the Bushites' imperialist ambitions. In fact, Iraq has now become al Qaeda's top recruiting ground! Indeed, al Qaeda now exports war-tested veterans from Iraq to train anti-American forces in Afghanistan and elsewhere.

Thanks, George!

Battling Bush has turned Iraq into a cash cow for al Qaeda's whole terrorist network, energizing donors from all across the Middle East. Add in ransoms from their kidnappings of wealthy Iraqis, and al Qaeda is generating so much money in Iraq that it can not only keep fighting our troops there, but also export funds to other al Qaeda pockets. The CIA has learned that even Osama bin Laden's core command is being financed by payments coming from its Iraq franchise. As one American counter-terrorism official concedes, "Iraq has been a moneymaker for them."

Ironic, huh?

One wonders if Al Quaeda belongs to Halliburton or the Carlyle Group....

Shaddap ...

Judge Walton in the Libby case from JasonC blogging at Maru's:

BWAHAHAHAHA... Shorter Judge Walton: get a fucking life and then go fuck yourself, you sniveling little jizz rags.

The Taming of the Blogwhore ...

Saturday means another chapter of my novel The Fourth Estate is up at The Practical Press.

Quote of the Day

Via Holden, an Italian senator on the Chimp's visit to Rome:

"He would probably get a warmer welcome in Cuba," said Roberto Calderoli, senator from the opposition Northern League.

Friday, June 8, 2007

The Shawskank Un-redemption

I was just eatin' lunch in front of the TV and saw that Paris Hilton is gettin' locked back up. No cites or links, but who needs 'em? Wanta see it? Turn on yer set and jump back! It's all over everywhere. Yeesh.

I have no doubt that L.A. Sheriff Baca 'reassigned' her to her horrid, squalid little house to get her out of his hair. She must have been a royal pain in the ass, and I'm sure the 24/7 "all Paris, all the time" coverage didn't help. The paparazzi, the media satellite trucks, adoring fans protesting the 'injustice', etc. all must have added up.

There's always the possibility that he didn't want the L.A. county jail system coming under very much scrutiny as well.

One of the CNN gals (do they have names?), obviously a regular reader of the Brain, damn near quoted Fixer's post, saying that Miss Hilton is a "metaphor for what's happening in the country today". She also said that the Sheriff mis-underestimated the depth of feeling against special treatment for rich, skinny, immoral, spoiled, and arrogant little white girls who flout the law.

Since this is goin' down on Friday afternoon, Miss Hilton's phalanx of attorneys can't file any papers or spring her again 'til Monday, so she'll at least get to spend the weekend in jail.

Note to Paris: Just STFU (fer sure she'll be shuttin' her fucker fer a few days! Heh.) and do yer time like everybody else. It won't kill you and it might help you get over your "malignant narcissism" (the CNN lady again).

There's entirely too much media time and energy being spent on this unimportant little soap opera. As long as the public is more interested in bread and circuses than matters of real importance, like the Repugs doing their best to flush this country down the shitter for their own gain, I'm afraid it will continue.

Stay tuned. I'm afraid there'll be updates.

Update No. 1:

She's at the Twin Towers, the main jail, and the one you don't want to go to. I'm sure they'll send her someplace else.

JCS Chairman to be replaced

Raw Story

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates announced that he would be replacing Joint Chiefs Chairman Peter Pace in an unexpected news conference Friday afternoon.

Gates is puttin' in a swab jockey to replace him. Good. I'm tired of my Marine Corps being ridiculed because of Pete "Puppydog" Pace.

As I see it, there's basically two kinds of Marines: the Chesty Puller kind and the Ollie North kind.

Chesty Puller (1898-1971) was a fighting man, the most decorated Marine in the Corps' history. He fought his country's battles in Nicaragua, Guadalcanal, New Britain, Peleliu, and at the Chosin Reservoir in Korea. He earned five Navy Crosses and a Distinguished Service Cross, awards second only to the Medal of Honor. He enlisted as a Private in 1918 and retired as a Lieutenant General in 1955. In 1966 he requested reinstatement so he could go fight in Vietnam (his request was denied). He has been an inspiration to generations of Marines. To this day, Marine recruits lie at attention in their racks at taps and intone loudly and in unison, "Goodnight Chesty, wherever you are!"

Now that's a Marine!

By contrast, the first line in Oliver North's Wikipedia entry is "...most well known for his involvement in the Iran-Contra Affair". As a junior officer, he fought in Vietnam, but served the rest of his career as a staff weenie on the road to flag rank and a galaxy of stars on his shoulders. Luckily, his career path was brought up short at the field grade level of LtCol when he got caught committing crimes of a high magnitude in the service of president Reagan. He now has a TV show, "War Stories", on Fox Noise, and it's the only thing I watch on that channel. Everything else is V-chipped so as not to insult my TV set.

Marine recruits do not shout "Nighty-night, Ollie! Another fine mess you've gotten us into!". Maybe they should.

One is a fighting Marine, the other a political one, in my estimation hardly worthy of "claiming the title" of United States Marine.

I was glad at first to see General Pace rise to become the first Marine to be Chairman of the JCS. He too served in Vietnam as a junior officer, and commanded infantry and aviation outfits to get his ticket punched for ascendance to flag rank. So far, so good, but he had a chance to be a real Marine and speak truth to power. He chose instead to be a yes-manwhore and kowtow to evil masters in the White House. His 'sense of duty' was wildly misplaced. I don't know why nor do I care. I lost all respect for him some time into his chairmanship, and I'm glad he's leaving.

Native Americans Seek Changes to Immigration Bill

Don Davis outdoes himself. Go see!

Flexing their new-found political muscle, Native Americans - the only "true" Americans - have now weighed in on the McCain-Kennedy immigration bill, lobbying Congress to provide for the immediate deportation of all Mayflower descendants.

Speaking for the National Council of American Indians, Chief "Running Tab at Foxwoods" asserted that the Mayflower settlers "not only entered this country illegally, without visas or work permits, but behaved very badly – spreading disease, raping our women, despoiling the land, and worst of all, stealing our very identity for their sports teams."

Other tribes have proposed a "touchback provision," requiring the illegal squatters to return to the 17th Century, for four centuries, before applying to live here legally in the present.

There's more...

Lies, Sighs and Politics

Paul Krugman

In Tuesday's Republican presidential debate, Mitt Romney completely misrepresented how we ended up in Iraq. Later, Mike Huckabee mistakenly claimed that it was Ronald Reagan's birthday.

Guess which remark The Washington Post identified as the "gaffe of the night"?

Folks, this is serious. If early campaign reporting is any guide, the bad media habits that helped install the worst president ever in the White House haven't changed a bit.

Thus most analysts declared Mrs. Clinton the winner in her debate, because she did the best job of delivering sound bites - including her Bush-talking-point declaration that we're safer now than we were on 9/11, a claim her advisers later tried to explain away as not meaning what it seemed to mean.

Similarly, many analysts gave the G.O.P. debate to Rudy Giuliani not because he made sense - he didn't - but because he sounded tough saying things like, "It's unthinkable that you would leave Saddam Hussein in charge of Iraq and be able to fight the war on terror." (Why?)

Look, debates involving 10 people are, inevitably, short on extended discussion. But news organizations should fight the shallowness of the format by providing the facts - not embrace it by reporting on a presidential race as if it were a high-school popularity contest.

For if there's one thing I hope we've learned from the calamity of the last six and a half years, it's that it matters who becomes president - and that listening to what candidates say about substantive issues offers a much better way to judge potential presidents than superficial character judgments. Mr. Bush's tax lies, not his surface amiability, were the true guide to how he would govern.

And I don't know if this country can survive another four years of Bush-quality leadership.

I think this country can survive anything, but if you let a pile of shit get too big, it takes a heap more shovelin'.

The 'Adam' Bomb

Editor & Publisher

Star at Creationist Museum Runs Sex Site

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The man who plays Adam in a video aired at a Bible-based creationist museum has led a different life outside the Garden of Eden, flaunting his sexual exploits online and modeling for a clothing line that promotes free love.


It's Subpoena Time

Holy shit, the Gray Lady speaks!

For months, senators have listened to a parade of well-coached Justice Department witnesses claiming to know nothing about how nine prosecutors were chosen for firing. This week, it was the turn of Bradley Schlozman, a former federal attorney in Missouri, to be uninformative and not credible. It is time for Senator Patrick Leahy, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, to deliver subpoenas that have been approved for Karl Rove, former White House counsel Harriet Miers and their top aides, and to make them testify in public and under oath.

This noncooperation has gone on long enough. Mr. Leahy should deliver the subpoenas for the five White House officials and make clear that if the administration resists, Congress will use all available means to get the information it needs.

If you and I don't show up after receiving a summons to do so, they come and get us, and like as not clap us in the juzgado until we decide to co-operate.

The White House Gang is not above the law any more than we are, even though they think they are. They have to be shown that they are subject to the same rules we are, by whatever means necessary, whether it takes a flying squad of U.S. Marshals or a Marine M.P. Battalion,

Recalcitrant mule, meet two-by-four.

Double, Double, Toil and Trouble

William Rivers Pitt on Libby, Iraq, immigration and the GOP movement faction v. the money wing, and how the general criminality, malfeasance, and incompetence of the Bush administration might bring the whole thing tumbling down around their ears. Today's 'recommended read'.

There it was on the front page of Wednesday's edition of the Washington Post, big as life and twice as ugly: "In the West Wing, Pardon Is A Topic Too Sensitive to Mention."

The gist: I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby got clocked with a 30-month prison sentence after being convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice in the Valerie Plame matter, and now squadrons of GOP die-hards are insisting that Bush pardon him before he goes to jail. On the surface, debate over whether or not to pardon Libby centers around how much more scandal and public disgrace this administration can endure. The Post story reports that several White House aides are deeply concerned that a Libby pardon risks "renewing questions about the truthfulness of the Bush administration."

Perish the thought.

Beneath this simplistic surface, however, boils a cauldron of deeper and far more complicated troubles. Bush, Cheney, the administration as a whole, and the entire Republican Party face the simultaneous eruption of several potential catastrophes, which, if they were to coalesce into one gargantuan avalanche, could very well render all prior problems quaint by comparison.

Peel the onion:

And peel it he does, layer by tears-of-rage inducing layer.

The newest Pew Research Center poll shows Bush's overall popularity coming in just under that of scabies and bubonic plague. [...]

The movement faction hasn't quite realized the degree to which they are considered useful-idiot cannon fodder by GOP officeholders and the check-writing faction. Whenever the GOP needs to divide public sentiment or distract public attention, the movement people get deployed to scream about gay rights, the Ten Commandments, snowflake babies, or whatever happens to be available at the moment. By mouthing platitudes about these issues, the party fools the movement faction into thinking the party actually cares about them.

But now, there is this immigration debate, which threatens to rip the scales from the eyes of the movement faction. Battalions of GOP politicians have made careers out of spitting venom at illegal immigrants to gain support from the movement base. Simultaneously, however, those same politicians have been accepting gigantic campaign checks from the big-money faction, who absolutely depend on easy access to the dirt-cheap pool of slave labor availed to them by the existence of millions of undocumented immigrants within the US.

The problem for the GOP politicians, of course, is that their movement-faction constituents have bought into their demagoguery about illegal immigration to such a degree that, today, this issue is second only to abortion on their list of Hated Things. The issue has birthed a seething anger within the movement faction aimed at illegal immigrants in general, but now aimed also at any GOP politician who stands for anything besides mass deportations.

But there are all those checks to consider, right?

If Judge Walton decides June 14 is go-to-jail day for Libby, and no Bush pardon is forthcoming, special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald will find himself gripping the handle of an awesomely formidable battle axe. Fitzgerald has made clear his belief that Libby broke the law, but did so to protect his boss, Dick Cheney. Fitzgerald will be able, under these circumstances, to offer Libby a choice: do hard time, or roll on your boss and spill the beans.

If that happens, and Libby decides to escape prison time by telling Fitzgerald what he knows, the cat will finally leap all the way out of the bag. The outing of Plame, the manipulation of WMD intelligence, the Office of Special Plans, the manipulation of terror alerts, the true intentions behind the decision to invade, and the whole smelly pile of fish heads will come spilling out onto the dock for all to see. Such an outcome might even pierce the veil surrounding Cheney's secret energy meetings from way back when; many people suspect that an invasion of Iraq, and a capture of their oil infrastructure, played a large part in the formulation of those plans.

June 14, simply put, is going to be a really, really big day.

And yet tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow creeps ever on in this petty pace. Any one of these troubles is trouble enough for the GOP, but to have all of them come together simultaneously portends the kind of total political calamity this country has not seen in generations.

Strap in.

I got a 5-point harness and a roll cage. I'm going to watch this wreck with my eyes wide open and a shit-eatin' grin on my face. Let 'er buck!

Microcosms ...

While I'll leave Paris Hilton blogging to Froggy, her situation is a microcosm of what's happening in this country today. The good news is, I think people are beginning to realize it ... finally.

The rich in this nation, aided and abetted by the Republicans have become an entity unto themselves. They are able to disregard laws, knowing they will not have to face the consequences. They've been given a pass on paying taxes, and those who run corporations make all the money while pushing their workers to be more productive, not by increasing their wages but by threatening unemployment.

Ladies and gentlemen, it's time to open the history books.

Leave us go back to pre-revolution Russia, to the days when the ruling class was almighty and their subjects were worked to death, their land and money taken without representation. Read Das Capital and learn the reasons for the workers' revolt. You'll find many of the same conditions prevailing here, now.

Leave us go back to pre-Revolution France. How many times have we been told 'let them eat cake' when we protest the growing disparity between the ultra-rich and the rest of us.

Leave us go back to pre-Revolution America. Boston Tea Party anyone? There's a reason we threw off the monarchy for the system we have now.

Personally, I'm tired of footing the bills for people like Paris and the CEOs of the oil companies. I'm tired of paying through the nose for gasoline when the big shots get half-billion dollar bonuses. I'm tired of my taxes going up when those with the most money are able to hide theirs from the tax man. I'm tired of our senior citizens having to choose between food and medication when the big shots at Big Pharma rake it in hand over fist.

Ladies and germs, when you see the stock market hitting record highs, it should tell you these corporations are doing an excellent job squeezing the most productivity from their workers for minimal compensation gains.

It's time for government to work for the people again, not corporate and special interest whose only contribution to the American Way of Life is the size of their campaign donations.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

The Brain's last day at Gitmo

A Republican State Party Chairman Wishes More Terrorist Attacks on U.S. to Prove George W. Bush "Right"


Yes, Dennis Milligan, the head of the Arkansas GOP, said this just a few days ago, posted in a June 3 article in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

Now, this is a monstrously barbaric and treasonous statement. It is hard to even begin to wrap one's mind around how it wishes Americans more terrorist attacks to prove Bush is "right" in sending Americans to die and paying hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars to war profiteers. To repeat, Milligan is wishing more Americans to die from terrorism on our home soil in order to prove that Bush is doing the "right thing" to prevent such attacks from occurring.

Okay, lift up your jaw.

Now, here's our point. Beyond how Milligan represents the traitorous extremes that Republicans will go to in making excuses for failed policies, have you heard one word of denunciation or alarm from the right wing media echo chamber about the traitor in their midst?

We haven't. Not a peep.

These people are enemies within our midst, whose minds and loyalties to an authoritarian hierarchy of incompetents is more important to them than loyalty to our safety and to our Constitution.

Think of what would have transpired if a Democratic State Party Chairman had said this. It would have been a national media and Republican talking point uproar for days.

But, most importantly, remember this point. This is for real. This is how Republicans think.

They wish us harm in order to prove that they are "right" in pursuing errant policies.

They have lost all sense of real concern for our safety – and are a threat to our well-being.

Some time back, one of the neoconmen said they needed a "new Pearl Harbor". Well, they got it on 9/11. Their little flying monkey blew it big time by invading a country, for reasons of his own (OIL, MONEY, POWER), that had nothing to do with it, like as if FDR had declared war on Mexico after 7 December '41.

Bush has NEVER been right, is NOT right about it now, and will NEVER be right about his pre-emptive criminal war and occupation of Iraq. It has absolutely minus 100% nothing to do with the fictional, made-up "war on terror" except as the acts have exacerbated feelings against us, thank you George.

And now this dumb-ass Arkie Repug wants more Americans to die in a last-ditch attempt to prove the unprovable. That motherfucker got me so pissed-off I can't see straight, and yet I hear crickets from the media about it.

Then I calmed down and the light came on in my head. The Repuglican 1000-year Reich is over. It is in its Last Throes. They are on a greasy downslope and are desperate to salvage what they criminally engineered and then bungled. Ain't gonna happen...

Unless they attack and kill thousands of Americans themselves. See "Werwolf" and this. Substitute the words 'Constitution', 'rule of law', 'the will of the people', and 'everybody but Repuglicanmongers' for 'Allies'.

Keep your rifles clean.

Fright Night II

Marc Cooper on the Repug can'tdidates panderpalooza:

If the DNC had enough good sense, they'd bankroll the Republican Presidential Debates as a weekly, roving, televised Chautauqua. I mean, what more could a Democratic campaign ever ask for than what was seen Tuesday night on CNN? Every major (and almost every minor) Republican contender elbowing each other aside to chide President Bush while simultaneously and unreservedly endorsing his most unpopular policies. An authentic twofer – for the other party, that is.

I think Leno said this but I'll steal it: they could have folks call in to vote the candidates off one at a time! It would save a lot of money not having to hold a primary election. Repugs don't like elections anyway. The last man standing would go up against the next President.

How long before Romney does his hair up like Sanjaya?

I'm not a Republican so I'm no position to judge which candidate came closest to appealing to the party base but none of them made any effort to speak to the some 70% of the American population that by now has had enough of the war.

And they're not going to. These clowns don't give a shit right now about the 70%. They're playing to the 28%. Period. This is PRIMARY politics. Whichever one of 'em can the most ignoramuses to vote for him in the Repuglican't primaries gets to be the nominee. His tune will change big time after that, believe me.

Doesn't matter. This is without a doubt the weakest bunch of dweebs I've ever seen trying to be the President, and I was the Duty NCO who threw the switch when the Good Lord said "Let there be light!"

This was great TV. My TiVo wants to know the next time this circus is scheduled to perform.

A 10-ringer with elephants in every one! Sometimes I wish I was a shovel salesman. I'd, er, clean up.

Air America TV

There's more of these at Rachel Maddow's Campaign Asylum at YouTube. She goes off on all our favorites! Be sure to see the one on Jerry Falwell aka "Yay! The Deadee!" I picked the above video mostly because she's wearing a Bear Flag tee-shirt.

2002 redux

Ooga Booga, the Iranians are coming!

You know, I wouldn't be surprised the Iranians are helping the Taliban, though the majorities in both groups belong to diametrically opposed sects of Islam. I can believe they put their 1000 year old differences aside to fight 'The Great Satan', really I can. If things get worse in Baghdad, I can envision the Shi'ia joining up with the majority-Sunni al-Qaeda, yes I can. The 'enemy of my enemy ...' and all that bullshit.

But, my dear Brian Ross of ABC News, if you're gonna put forth that these enemies have banded together in their fight against us, you might want to quote someone besides 'coalition officials' and 'unnamed sources' and one clown from RAND.

Ross has been the conduit for the WH to release 'damaging' information about Iran in their attempt to broaden their war. If we were really, concerned about Iran's shenanigans in Afghanistan, which we should have seen coming, we wouldn't have wasted so many resources in Iraq and sealed off the Afghani borders, sort of exactly what we failed to do in Iraq.

Sorry, but after 6 years of the Chimp, and the tide of bullshit we've been fighting against, I believe nothing until I see irrefutable proof. Hearsay went out the window with the Iraq invasion.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007


Jon Carroll

"WASHINGTON -- In the past year, lawyers for President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney directed the Secret Service to maintain the confidentiality of visitor logs, declaring them to be presidential records.

"The drive to keep secret the lists of visitors to the White House complex and Cheney's home, the administration says, is essential to ensuring the president and vice president receive candid advice to carry out their duties. The decision made the logs exempt from a law requiring their disclosure to whoever asks to see them."

Logically, then:

Washington -- Lawyers for President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney have moved to make the text of all laws initiated or supported by them unavailable to whoever asks for them. The laws will still be available to all people who do not ask for them. Members of Congress will be able to see the laws on a "need to know" basis once they have voted in favor of them.

Washington -- Lawyers for President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney have moved to have their names stricken from all public documents. "If the terrorists knew who the president was, they could very easily find out where he lives," said Press Secretary Tony Snow. "They could learn to whom he is married and where his daughters go on vacation. Imagine what they could do with that information!"

Washington -- Lawyers for President X and Vice President Y have asked the lawyers to classify everything that might be described as "information." Said Press Secretary Beta 5: "More than anything, the terrorists want information. They spend their time and resources attempting to acquire it. It is our job to prevent that from happening. I did not make these remarks and I do not exist."

We must ask you not to read this column. Doing so would subject you to stiff fines and harsh penalties. If you are still reading this column, please waterboard yourself until a federal agent arrives to do it for you.

Look for Bush, Cheney, and Rove to disguise themsleves and slip out of the White House in the dead of night so as to not be set upon and savaged by Repuglican't presidential candidates. Tonight would be fine.

'Surge' - Old School

June 6 would not be complete without a post to commemorate the Allied troops who participated in the amphibious and airborne landings in Normandy on that day in 1944 that led to the end of World War II. Personally, I stayed in the womb until three weeks after the fall of Japan and I was sure it was safe to come out...

Battle of Normandy

United States:: 29,000 dead, 106,000 wounded and missing;
United Kingdom: 11,000 dead, 54,000 wounded and missing;
Canada: 5,000 dead; 13,000 wounded and missing;
France: 12,200 civilian dead and missing

The estimate of German losses is 210,000 prisoners and 240,000 killed and wounded.

680,200 killed, wounded, and captured in the span of 80 days from 6 June to 25 August, 1944.

The difference between then and now was WWII was fought for the future of mankind, and not for oil, power, and some twerp's ego.

Casualty figures in Bush's War, both civilian and military, are similar in number after 4+ years.

The difference is they are all for naught.

California politics

I was looking for something to commemorate this day in history and through sort of site-owner-planned serendipity found this about CA house races:


OK, on to the Republicans. I'm going to rank them in order of most possible pickup, including their number from the last roundup. I'm also adding the "Boxer number," an excellent system for measuring districts given to me by a reader whose name escapes me. Basically, seeing how Boxer fared in her 2004 re-election against Bill Jones in a particular district is a decent indicator of how partisan it is. If I put "57," that means Boxer received 57% of the vote. Anything over 50, obviously, is good.

1) CA-04 (Doolittle). Last month: 1. Boxer number: 40. John Doolittle's stayed out of the courthouse thus far, but he's clearly damaged goods and the GOP knows it. A number of prominent Republicans have made waves about challenging Doolittle in the primary, including Air Force reservist Eric Egland, a former Doolittle supporter. Schwarzenegger flack and former Bush-Cheney campaign guy Steve Schmidt apparently has his support. In the article, he calls Charlie Brown a "Cindy Sheehan Democrat," which is ludicrous on several levels, but undeniably more effective in that reliably Republican district than we may think. Doolittle believes that he still has majority support, but then again he thinks rogue Democrats in the Justice Department are conspiring against him. Charlie Brown still has a better chance against Doolittle than a fresh face.

There's more. I'm glad to see my aptly named congresscritter at the top of the list for replacement next time. If you're interested in California politics, this is a good site to bookmark, I think.

Rest in peace, brother

Please read Steve Gilliard's obituary in the NYTimes.

Libby seeks new Gitmo

Don Davis

"That's right, if we get him declared an 'enemy combatant', and tried under the Bush Military Commissions, he has no chance of ever being convicted."

I think it's a good strategy. He'd do at least five years before they bungle his trial and have to let him go.

Playing to the 'base' ...

Unfortunately, I caught a little of the Rethug debate while waiting for Mrs. F's flight to get in from Columbus. After bleaching my eyes and ears, the overwhelming thoughts were;

1) They're playing to the base. The hardcore 28 percenters, the guns, god, and gays crowd. Note to Rethug Presidential candidates: 28% will not get you in the White House.

2) What a buncha fucking idiots. They sound like a buncha fifteen year olds. Is the norm for GOP candidates to have double-digit IQs?

That said, Digby sees the same things:


The rhetoric coming out of these guys is really quite extreme, even by GOP standards, but I guess that's just because the front runners are all a bunch of flipflopping hypocrites who have to fake some kind of red-meat qualifications for the base. They've opted for bullying machismo, which is actually quite smart. It's the tie that binds. They certainly have given up on the "law 'n order" platform with their nearly unanimous support for a Scooter pardon -- especially the ex-federal prosecutor Giuliani who couldn't stop whining and twisting his little lace hankie about how unfair it all was.


Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Dudes ... seriously ...

Dear Preznit Chimpy McFucktard and Congress (Dems included),

You all really suck and we're really fucking pissed. At this point, we're pissed enough to say "fuck the '08 elections, let's string the lot of 'em up and do it ourselves". Seriously, dudes, end this shit soon. You don't have enough troops in the U.S. to put down a revolution.



Thanks to Maru for the link.

Mega Chimp

Mark Morford

Bush Declares Self 'Mega Decider'

New documents ensure Dubya will rule America, should calamity strike. Free balloons!

It goes something like this: Should any "decapitating event" occur in America that somehow incapacitates the D.C. power structure, should "any incident, regardless of location, that results in extraordinary levels of mass casualties, damage, or disruption severely affecting the U.S. population, infrastructure, environment, economy, or government functions" take place, well then, all power and decision making would devolve to the White House, which would then attempt to orchestrate our very survival and oversee all essential governmental functions with none other than the president himself as, well, Super-Mega Lord Decider. With extra crayons.

You know, a dictator.

And then boom, the nation goes into lockdown and it's a strict military state and Lynn Cheney starts enjoying sweaty night visions of Dick lumbering purposefully through the White House halls deciding who to nuke next as Dubya quivers in the corner and the flying monkeys prepare the escape pod. Just like in that Will Smith movie! Neat!

After all, Shrub only has a year and a half left in office. Plus, his power has been severely truncated by the Dems. Why would he care to try for such a thuggish, cagey power grab now? What would be the point? Except, you know, to savagely tilt the next election and to further the new 'n' brutal neocon agenda of perpetual war and as a desperate, last-gasp move to prove he actually has the cojones to do something so appalling, so perfectly megalomaniacal, it's sure to rescue his rotten legacy from history's compost pile? I mean, besides that.

I wouldn't bet against it.

Proper marketing...

A tip o' the Brain to 100yearmarch.

Lost in translation

The BEAST has the real lowdown on McCain's walk in the Indiana Baghdad marketplace. Don't miss it! Liquid alert.

The group nears and enters an outdoor market, the vicinity of which has been thoroughly scanned for possible threats. Soldiers fan out throughout the area. Smiling, McCain approaches a rug seller.

McCain: Hiya partner, I'm John McCain from the United States of America. How's business?

Translator: (in Arabic) This guy is an American senator. Smile and shake his hand or you'll be killed.

Shopkeeper #1: (in Arabic) Wonderful. Can we make this quick? I'm trying to sell some rugs here, because your stupid war has made the money I had saved completely worthless, and I lost my job as an engineer. Generally. My life has gone to hell.

Translator: He says it's an honor to meet you, sir.

Much, much more!

Libby gets 30 months

Good. I hope he gets lots of his old pals for company over the next year or so.

Always tell the truth, boys and girls.

Story at Yahoo!News. "LiveSlam" at Firedoglake.

Who? Bush? Never heard of him ...

Heh ... Glenn Greenwald:

The great fraud being perpetrated in our political discourse is the concerted attempt by movement conservatives, now that the Bush presidency lay irreversibly in ruins, to repudiate George Bush by claiming that he is not, and never has been, a "real conservative." ...

He might not be, but he's all yours.

... This con game is being perpetrated by the very same conservatives who -- when his presidency looked to be an epic success -- glorified George W. Bush, ensured both of his election victories, depicted him as the heroic Second Coming of Ronald Reagan, and celebrated him as the embodiment of True Conservatism.


And the best part is, he uses the conservative wankers' words against them.

And just an end note: If the situation for the Chimp is really as bad as it seems, wait for Republicans to start bandying the idea of impeachment around as the elections get closer.

Quote of the Day

George at Skippy's:

democrats lose 24 percentage points - now dead even with awol in opinion polls. no one could have imagined that voting a blank check to the megalomaniac against the will of the people would backfire. [my em]

Nah ...

Monday, June 4, 2007

Shorter Bob Shrum ...

It's all the candidates' fault they didn't win. I'm just the consultant.

What a fucking loser.

The last yer gonna hear about this. Well, maybe...

This is the post you've all been waiting for, i.e. the LAST about my High School reunion!

The photo shows all the folks who showed up who graduated in the '60s. I was a little disappointed that more didn't, but on the flip side, given the constraints of time at what was basically a dinner party, it was a workable number in terms of having time to chat. We all managed to sit at one table, marked "60s", which was a little ironic: not only did we graduate in that decade, we are all in that decade of our lives! Pictured are grads of '61, '62, and '64. There were probably 200 people at this thing, but the younger squalling brats in their 30s and 40s didn't count.

Notice the lack of, er, light blond hair in the front row. I suspect a little exercise of a woman's prerogative, but it's not nice to speculate on that so I won't.

I have been asked, if not threatened, by a couple of the gals not to say anything, as in zip-point-zilch, nada, bupkis, about them. It's understandable, given that one of them was the only one I would have recognized on the street after all these years - she still looks like her 'Wanted' poster. Not their names, credit card numbers, blood types, or genetic predispositions, and so as not to single them out, ain't gonna be nuthin' 'bout nobody, with the exception of Steve, who told me to knock myself out.

The last time I saw Steve, standing, right, I was a slick-sleeve Private of Marines and he was a Canoe Club Seaman 2d. He went on to retire from the Navy as a Master Chief and now has his own Systems Analysis company. He lives in Virginia, so he gets the mileage trophy for the dinner, which coincided nicely with his Mom's birthday. Might as well have more than one reason to come all the way out West! He and his lovely bride of 39 years took his Mom to Lake Tahoe for a little R&R and came to visit me last week. We had a nice afternoon.

We all had a fine time reminiscing, catching up on our lives, and, sadly, finding out who all is gone. It's amazing to me how folks can remember some of the little things about school days that are long forgotten. I don't mean big things, like having a chair with your name on it in the principal's office, I mean little things, like the time you bent over to pick up a piece of chalk and your pants split! Just a theoretical example, mind you...

I must admit to the whole evening going kinda blurry after one of the ladies told me about riding her Honda 90 around in fishnet stockings and a mini-skirt. I can only assume that was in her beatnik days and not last week. My strong sense of chivalry will forever prevent me from identifying her, of course. (Second from the right - G's Bad Angel)

These folks have all done pretty well for themselves, although to be fair, some of 'em had a pretty good head start, but in the back of my mind was this little nagging suspicion that one or two might have saved up their state crazy checks so as to put on a good appearance, and had a shopping cart in the underground parking. My suspicions were forever put to rest as we waited to ransom off our car keys from the valets. Escalades, Lexuses, and one notable two-seat M-B in an absolutely livid flourescent barracks green! I think ours was the only pickup.

By the way, the '60s group out-partied the youngsters. We were the last to leave. Maybe we just had more trouble getting up...

It was well worth going. I had a great time, and due to the miracle of e-mail, some of us are keeping in touch as we speak.

The venue

The reunion was held at The Regency Club in Westwood. This is the fanciest joint I've been in for a long time. I violated about 2/3 of their dress code. I woulda had a clean sweep if I hadn't got 'The Look' from Mrs. G when I told her I was going to wear my Grateful Dead T-shirt!

They had two chow lines for dinner, salads on both, one with a meat and one with a non-meat terminus. There was also a large table with sushi, which anywhere else would have qualified as a very well-stocked bait shop. The food was excellent, prime rib and rack of lamb, with good sidearms. The non-meat-eaters got noodles. The lines were long and slow, and Steve and I agreed that these cats didn't know squat about runnin' a chow line, nor the patrons how to move through one. I will admit it wasn't exactly like rammin' a metal tray forward and having it come back with God knows what on it...

After greasin' down, I wanted to go have a smoke. While I was rollin' it, I casually mentioned to Mrs. G that I was gonna do something I used to do in school, go smoke in the restroom. 'The Look' again. Scratch that idea. On the theory that if ya wanta get results, ask an enlisted man, I asked one of the young mess cooks staff (they were all young. UCLA is three blocks away. Click 'contact' at the club site.) where they went to smoke. He led me to an elevator exclusively for the use of floors 16-18. Just a note here - you couldn't get to the floor the dinner was on from the parking garage without a staff member keying in a special code in the elevator. Did I mention this joint was a little exclusive? He accompanied me to a balcony equipped with ashtrays and made sure I knew which elevator to take to get back without screwing up. A good lad.

Now, I lived in L.A. for 35 years, but I had never been on the 18th floor of anything in that town before this. There has been a tremendous amount of development, and such buildings didn't exist when I lived there, except for downtown. It was a lovely clear evening, and I was treated to a spectacular view. The tallest building in West L.A. used to be the Mormon Temple, about a mile away, and I was dead level with the Angel Moroni on the top of it. I got a little vertigo looking over the edge. I'll give you Noo Yawkahs time to quit laughin'...

It's barely possible I was a little under-dressed for that joint. Hell, I went 'Truckee formal', which means I wore socks and zipped up my fly.

My school

I was a little surprised to find that my school has a Wikipedia entry. Be sure to scroll down to 'Notable former students'. The list is nowhere near complete, at least as far as to my day, but I knew the late Meredith MacRae quite well. Click on her name to read about a quality lady.

Well, that's about it. Since this was the first reunion I've been to in 45 years, at this rate look for a post about the next one in 2052.

Cold Cash Coldcocks Congressman

Think Progress

Federal prosecutors are seeking an indictment today against Rep. William J. Jefferson (D-La.) in a longstanding FBI corruption probe centering on allegations that he took bribes to promote high-tech business ventures in Africa, sources familiar with the investigation said.

If filed, the indictment would cap a long and tumultuous investigation that was stalled for months because of a legal battle over the constitutionality of an FBI raid on Jefferson's office last May. The raid came after the FBI found $90,000 in the freezer of his Capitol Hill home.

I can think of better places to keep my 'dirty money' than in my freezer! I find a gutted car battery works well, kept under some old tires in the back of the garage.

But seriously, folks, corruption wherever found needs to be dealt with. This is one area where the Repugs are way ahead of us, I'm happy to say.

Oh, the irony...

Ironic Times

Creation Museum Opens
Features documentary film about Earth's history by Hanna-Barbera.

Archeologists Find 2100-Year-Old Melon
In the back of your refrigerator.

Another Close Bush Adviser Leaves White House
Barney's departure "not related" to recent attorney firings.

And a special "Godwin's Law" twofer:

Army Sending Amputees Back Into Combat
Tactic last used by Germany in April, 1945.


We erred in ascribing the term "enhanced interrogation" to the Bush Administration. In fact the term was originally used to describe interrogation methods used against insurgents and other civilians by the Nazis in 1942, and later judged to be war crimes. The techniques, and the arguments to justify their use, however, were the same as those used by the Bush Administration. We apologize for any confusion caused by our mistake.

Batshit crazy or the essence of protest?

This is about how the Congressional Dems made me feel when they gave Bush his blank check:

That was Phillip Wellman, Manager of the Mississippi Braves an Atlanta Braves AA operation. Full story «here»

Steve Gilliard woulda loved it!


Religion and Morality

Most regulars know I have little use for religion. I just can't believe the god the Christians (I use the term to describe all derivatives of Catholicism) claim to worship would allow such a buncha hypocrites to speak in His name. Barbara O'Brien (via Roger Ailes the Good) has an excellent post up on just this subject:


In fact, it seems to me that “morality” imposed by religion is often brittle. How often do we hear about religious leaders committing the very sins they rail against? What’s amazing about Ted Haggart’s story is not how unusual it is, but how typical it is. Show me a holy roller who rails against the sins of the flesh, and I’ll show you someone who’s been making unauthorized use of his own body parts. You can almost count on it. The same church that crusades against abortion tries to sweep the molestation of choirboys under the rug. The same ministers who warn against worldliness get mixed up in partisan politics. The Ten Commandments forbid graven images, and the faithful make a graven image of the Ten Commandments. It’s as if there’s a near-total disconnect between what the religious say and what the religious do.

And these examples are not exceptions. Albert Schweitzer was an exception. St Francis of Assisi was an exception. Jim and Tammy Faye are, alas, the rule.


Don't anyone preach morality to me. Not when you have a Bible in one hand and support the Iraq Occupation and the denial of civil rights with the other.

Had to drop the Mrs. at the airport and I'm late for work. See yas later ...

Evading taxes ...

We need taxes to make this country work, regardless of what the Rethugs say. Now, my accountant finds me every legal deduction I can take. I have investments in tax-deferred accounts and I do my best to invest where the tax burden is a minimum. That said, my money stays here, in America. I pay whatever taxes I owe (a lot) and don't try to 'hide' assets. Sarah at the Wire has been saying the same thing I have for years, that those who hide their net worth in offshore accounts should be encouraged to move those assets onshore:


So when the super-rich use offshore tax havens to avoid paying what they owe in taxes, they’re reneging on their duties as citizens. It seems only fair to me that the consequence of that kind of tax avoidance ought to be loss of citizenship. If it’s more important to someone to avoid paying what they owe in taxes than to continue being an American, then let them keep their money. They can become a citizen of the Cayman Islands or Bermuda or wherever else they store their wealth, and come here on a visitor’s visa – if they can get one. [em in original]

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Sometimes I worry a little about Pop...

Frank Rich longs for the days of Richard Nixon and presidential competence????

I quit worrying after I read it. You will too.

1 of 1000, but it's a start


spoke with someone who attended the graduation ceremony at West Point where Dick Cheney gave the commencement speech. Cheney then stood on stage and shook hands with each of the 1000 graduates: wait, make that 999. Because one courageous and principled cadet faced Cheney, looked him up and down, decided not to offer his hand and walked on. Cheney was visibly taken aback, and turned to glare after the parting cadet. (We can only imagine the repercussions that this cadet may now face.)

Yay for the cadet, but I fear the young Lieutenant faces a career as OIC of the Permanent Latrine Orderly Brigade, and maybe as he ascends the ladder of rank over the next twenty years, maybe all the way to Captain, as CO of the Mess Kit Repair Battalion.

A West Point cadet is the epitome of honor, duty and respect. That this graduate was willing to show the assembled gathering that he would not deign to honor this dishonorable Vice President with a handshake should have sent tremors of excitement through the crowd. This is probably the first time in six years that anyone has had the temerity and honesty to face down the man whom we could arguably call the Big Evil. Cheney should be getting this treatment from every person he encounters, as should Bush, Gonzales, Rice and the rest of this renegade administration. Of course, these corrupted leaders have insulated themselves from almost any contact with the general public, to the extent of even blocking off the side streets as their armored motorcades (reminiscent of images of dictator governments the world over) take them from home to work. If they were regularly exposed to common Americans they would discover that there are many who would dare to tell them that this emperor has no clothes.

Fat chance. They go to great lengths to insulate themselves from reg'lar folks. With good reason.

Speaking as a professional...

A magnet you can own!

Dogs? Art? 2

So the votes are overwhelmingly in favor of my putting military art in the masthead. I enjoy it myself, but also have a soft spot for cute doggies (my day isn't complete until I stop at CuteOverload and the Cheezburger). That said, I put the dog in the sidebar and I'll be changing the art on the masthead weekly ... or something like that.

I plan to be King of the World ...

But that doesn't mean I have the resources to pull it off. These clowns could have planned until the cows came home and they would never have been successful.

NEW YORK (CNN) -- Four men have been charged with conspiring to blow up jet fuel supply tanks and pipelines at John F. Kennedy International Airport.

Homeland Security sources said there is no current threat at the airport and the attack as planned was "not technically feasible." [my em]


Ooga booga! Be afraid, the mean terrorist guys are behind every fire hydrant! Pay no attention to all the other scandals coming to light.

Do they still think people believe this horseshit? I don't know about the rest of you but New Yorkers, you know, the people who actually lived through September 11th, don't scare that easily.

Tip o' the Brain to Oliver Willis.