Monday, January 31, 2005

Encouraging.....

Link.


BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- Millions of Iraqis cast ballots Sunday in the nation's first free election in half a century -- a vote hailed by officials as a success despite sporadic violence that killed more than two dozen people.

"This is the greatest day in the history of this country," Iraqi national security adviser Mowaffak al-Rubaie told CNN.


We shall watch closely as events unfold....An election is an important step in getting our people home asap. The success of the election process has become vital, and this is good news. Hats off to all the folks who had the guts to go vote.

Friday, January 28, 2005

U.S.S San Francisco

Ryan of Politicaltracker.com has this post concerning the U.S.S San Francisco's collision with a submerged mountain recently. Respect to Ryan for his research and an interesting read....

Good for you, Pops.

With the rash of home break-ins in Newark recently, the NPD have come up short on clues to who is commiting the crimes. So its a good thing we have 95 year old men to hand out a little senior citizen justice.

Vincent "Winnie" Mayer, 95, hadn't played on a football field in more than 70 years, but that made little difference to the former University of Delaware football star who fought off a burglar in his home just outside of Newark.

The intruder managed to escape with some money, but not before Mayer smacked him with his wife's walking cane.

"I bopped him three or four times," said Mayer, who suffered scratches during the scuffle and was treated at the scene by paramedics. "I got some good whacks in, but I had trouble keeping my balance."

Mayer - who played defensive end for the Blue Hens from 1930 to 1932 and later became a co-founder of the Newark Touchdown Club - grabbed his wife's walking cane and began hitting the intruder. But the assailant forced his way past Mayer and demanded money, Aviola said.

Mayer said his football experience came in handy. He was honored in 1989 as part of UD's all-time football team and was awarded the university's Medal of Distinction in 2001.

"I would've taken him down on the football field," he said.


Bad ass.


One of these things is not like the others.

From The Washington Post


At yesterday's gathering of world leaders in southern Poland to mark the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the United States was represented by Vice President Cheney. The ceremony at the Nazi death camp was outdoors, so those in attendance, such as French President Jacques Chirac and Russian President Vladimir Putin, were wearing dark, formal overcoats and dress shoes or boots. Because it was cold and snowing, they were also wearing gentlemen's hats. In short, they were dressed for the inclement weather as well as the sobriety and dignity of the event.

The vice president, however, was dressed in the kind of attire one typically wears to operate a snow blower.



At least he didn't tell the other dignitaries to "go f--- themselves."

Insult to Injury....

As if coming up cheap on protective armor wasnt enough......


Most patients at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington have a lot on their minds: the war they just fought, the injuries they came home with, the future that lies ahead. The last thing a wounded soldier needs to worry about is where the next meal is coming from. But for hundreds of Walter Reed patients, that's a real concern. Starting this month, the Army has started making some wounded soldiers pay for the food they eat at the hospital.
Paying out of pocket for hospital meals can impose a serious financial burden, costing hundreds of dollars every month. That can be a lot of money to a military family. But perhaps worse, the meal charge feels like an ungrateful slap in the face to some soldiers. "I think it sucks," said a soldier from West Virginia who broke his neck in Iraq after falling off a roof. "I think that people should be able to eat. They get us over there, get us wounded and shot up and then tell us: Fend for yourself. You are all heroes, but here you go."




"Journalism"

....Im calling for resignations.

One day after President Bush ordered his Cabinet secretaries to stop hiring commentators to help promote administration initiatives, and one day after the second high-profile conservative pundit was found to be on the federal payroll, a third embarrassing hire has emerged. Salon has confirmed that Michael McManus, a marriage advocate whose syndicated column, "Ethics & Religion," appears in 50 newspapers, was hired as a subcontractor by the Department of Health and Human Services to foster a Bush-approved marriage initiative. McManus championed the plan in his columns without disclosing to readers he was being paid to help it succeed.


How many other "journalists" are receiving Bush Bucks?


The Honor Roll

From Altercation:


Who had the courage to vote against the first African-American female nominee for secretary of state merely because she has proven to be profoundly incompetent, incorrigibly dishonest, and absolutely unwilling to recognize, much less admit her many, many mistakes?

The Honor Roll:

Barbara Boxer, D-Calif.
Robert Byrd, D-W.Va.
Edward Kennedy, D-Mass.
John Kerry, D-Mass.
Carl Levin, D-Mich.
James Jeffords, I-Vt.
Jack Reed, D-R.I.
Mark Dayton, D-Minn.
Daniel Akaka, D-Hawaii
Evan Bayh, D-Ind.
Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J.
Tom Harkin, D-Iowa
Richard Durbin, D-Ill.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Q: How many Bush Administration officials does it take to screw in a light bulb?


A: None. There is nothing wrong with the light bulb; its conditions are improving every day. Any reports of its lack of incandescence are a delusional spin from the liberal media. That light bulb has served honorably, and anything you say undermines the lighting effect. Why do you hate freedom?

Friday, January 21, 2005

VW against terrorism

This has been proven a hoax, none the less, worth watching.




More Liberal Bias in the Media

...It's all right here to see from Mediamatters.org

Media Matters for America inventoried all guests who appeared on FOX News, CNN, and MSNBC during the channels' January 20 inauguration coverage. Between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET, Republican and conservative guests and commentators outnumbered Democrats and progressives 19 to 7 on FOX, 10 to 1 on CNN (not including a Republican-skewed panel featuring Ohio voters), and 13 to 2 on MSNBC. Moreover, the rare Democrat or progressive guest usually appeared opposite conservatives, whereas most Republican and conservative guests and commentators appeared solo or alongside fellow conservatives.




Bill Gates, old school style.

Just look at this.


What is he, Ricky Gervais?



While we are on the subject, I'll take a moment to follow in the foot steps of the great Sneaking Suspicions in suggesting you purchase "the Office" on DVD. Funniest show on TV. Well, on TV's with BBC anyway.


More drivel.

Kos points out the irony of Bush's statements in his speech yesterday.

Washington Post has it here.

President Bush's soaring rhetoric yesterday that the United States will promote the growth of democratic movements and institutions worldwide is at odds with the administration's increasingly close relations with repressive governments in every corner of the world.

Some of the administration's allies in the war against terrorism -- including Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Uzbekistan -- are ranked by the State Department as among the worst human rights abusers. The president has proudly proclaimed his friendship with Russian President Vladimir Putin while remaining largely silent about Putin's dismantling of democratic institutions in the past four years. The administration, eager to enlist China as an ally in the effort to restrain North Korea's nuclear ambitions, has played down human rights concerns there, as well.

Here is what the State Department says about our good friends Saudi Arabia

The Government's human rights record remained poor; although there were positive improvements in a few areas, serious problems remained. Citizens did not have the right to change their government. There were credible reports that security forces continued to torture and abuse detainees and prisoners, arbitrarily arrest and detain persons, and hold them in incommunicado detention. There were cases in which Mutawwa'in continued to intimidate, abuse, and detain citizens and foreigners. There was no evidence that violators were held accountable for abuses. Most trials were closed, and defendants usually appeared before judges without legal counsel. There were reports that the Government infringed on individuals' privacy rights. The Government continued to restrict freedom of speech and press, although there has been an increase in press freedom over a series of years. The Government restricted freedom of assembly, association, religion, and movement. Violence and discrimination against women, violence against children, discrimination against ethnic and religious minorities, and strict limitations on worker rights continued [...]

The Mutawwa'in reportedly detained young men for offenses that included eating in restaurants with young women, making lewd remarks to women in the shopping malls, or walking in groups through family-only sections of shopping centers. Women of many nationalities were detained for actions such as riding in a taxi with a man who was not their relative, appearing with their heads uncovered in shopping malls, and eating in restaurants with males who were not their relatives. Many such prisoners were held for days, sometimes weeks, without officials notifying their families or, in the case of foreigners, their embassies.

Pakistan

The Government's human rights record remained poor; although there were some improvements in a few areas, serious problems remained. In 2002, citizens participated in national government elections; however, many observers found serious flaws in the legal framework for the election. Security forces used excessive force, at some times resulting in death, and committed or failed to prevent extrajudicial killings of suspected militants and civilians. The Government enacted measures to improve the discipline and training of security forces and punished some security forces officials who were guilty of abuses; however, abuses by security forces remained a problem.

Killings between rival political factions and sectarian groups continued to be a problem. Police abused and raped citizens. Prison conditions remained extremely poor and life threatening, and police arbitrarily arrested and detained citizens. Several political leaders remained in detention or exile abroad at year's end. Case backlogs led to long delays in trials, and lengthy pretrial detention was common. The judiciary was subject to executive and other outside influences and corruption, inefficiency, and lack of resources remained severe problems. The Government has taken steps to control the judiciary and to remove itself from judicial oversight. Some aspects of the Government's implementation of its anti-corruption campaign violated due process. The Government infringed on citizens' privacy rights.


We going after these guys when we "Stomp out tyranny" in the world" ???


Thursday, January 20, 2005

Gonzales, not so speedy.

From this Slate article......

(Bunker emphasis)


"While the LAT's lead notices that Democrats are ticked about Gonzales' evasions, it doesn't really detail them. The Post's Dana Milbank, writing inside the paper, does, pointing out that stonewalling is the latest most fabulous trend among Cabinet nominees. Asked about some pre-war briefings on Iraq's weapons programs, Rice said, "I'm sorry, I just don't remember." And asked to detail his role in the memo that build the legal framework for torture, which the papers have reported that Gonzales requested, Gonzales wrote to senators, "I have no present knowledge of any such notes, memoranda, e-mails or other documents and I have not conducted a search." Milbank even counts up Gonzales' written evasions: "I am not at liberty to disclose" at least 10 times; "I do not recall" or "I have no recollection" six times; I did not "conduct a search" seven times; "I am not at liberty [to discuss certain matters]" 10 times; and "I have no present knowledge" seven times. "It's a little bit appalling," said one Reagan administration official. "A conservative should want greater congressional scrutiny—it limits government."

Ummm....what DO you "recall/recollect"? What CAN we "discuss"? All your Knowledge is "Past" knowledge? What do you do for the President and the country again? Whats that? You dont recall? Me neither.


Presidential inauguration day

...And Jenna loves metal. Rock!

People who say I have nothing nice to say about Bush are dead wrong. He has a good looking daughter.



-*UPDATE*-
Eric Alterman sums it up, as usual, perfectly.
"What is one to say about today? To the horror of its well-wishers across the world, the United States—once the “last, best hope of mankind”- is re-inaugurating the worst president in its history; one who has exploited an attack, the success of which its own incompetence helped enable, in order to execute an extremist agenda that is killing thousands, costing trillions and leaving all of us far more insecure than when it began. Before November 2, we could argue it was all a mistake; the guy ran as a “compassionate conservative,” misrepresented his record, Nader screwed everything up, and we actually voted for Gore anyway. It took the Republicans on the Supreme Court—two of whom were appointed by the guy’s dad—to stick the country with this regime filled with ideological fanatics and corrupt incompetents. Now, what are we to say? Fifty-nine million members of our nation do not mind that we were deliberately misled into a war that has drained our blood and treasure to create nothing but hatred and chaos; and that the very people who were at fault have been rewarded and promoted, encouraged to look for new targets to spread their hubristic malevolence. It defies all logic and truthfully, my ability to explain or even fully understand it. One thing is for certain: Based on an virtually unanimous unwillingness to consider its past mistakes and learn from them, things are going to get far, far worse before they get better. Thousands more will die. (Twenty six yesterday.) Trillions more will be squandered. Millions more will grow to hate and revile the name of the United States of America and prepare to attack us in ways for which our government is resolutely unwilling to prepare. Avoidable catastrophe awaits this nation and its victims during the next four years as we will undoubtedly reap what we have sown.
One thing’s for certain, none of this would have been possible without the enthusiastic cooperation—if not cheerleading—of the nation’s mainstream media.
Thomas Friedman, considered a liberal opponent of the Bush administration who nevertheless advocated for its mendacious arguments vis-à-vis Iraq and then explicitly excused its willingness to lie because, after all, Hussein was a vicious dictator, cannot help but recognize the damage the administration has done to the nation’s good name the world over. Still, he once again chooses to empower its worst instincts vis-à-vis yet another abominable adventure in Iran by finding what? A single Oxford student in Paris. And pronouncing on the basis of this intrepid bit of investigative reporting that Iran is a “Red state” by extension, would welcome an American invasion of the type outlined by Seymour Hersh in The New Yorker. Four years from now we will be assessing the fallout from that catastrophe undoubtedly in dead Americans, Iranians and additional hatred—and terrorists—bred the world over. God Bless America. We are going to need all the help we can get."





Wednesday, January 19, 2005

New paint job.


Lookin' good.


Friday, January 14, 2005

Bush backs off on "Bring 'em on" comment

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Bush says he now sees that tough talk can have an "unintended consequence."

During a round-table interview with reporters from 14 newspapers, the president, who not long ago declined to identify any mistakes he'd made during his first term, expressed misgivings for two of his most famous expressions: "Bring 'em on," in reference to Iraqis attacking U.S. troops, and his vow to get Osama bin Laden "dead or alive."

"Sometimes, words have consequences you don't intend them to mean," Bush said Thursday.

"'Bring 'em on' is the classic example, when I was really trying to rally the troops and make it clear to them that I fully understood, you know, what a great job they were doing. And those words had an unintended consequence. It kind of, some interpreted it to be defiance in the face of danger. That certainly wasn't the case."

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Oh, yes. Well worth it.

Dear God, Mr. President.

"The invasion of Iraq, which ousted Saddam Hussein and has cost the lives of some 1,300 U.S. military personnel and billions of dollars, was "absolutely" worth it, despite the absence of any weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, President Bush told ABC News' Barbara Walters in an exclusive interview that will air this Friday."

Bush told Walters, "I felt like we'd find weapons of mass destruction — like many here in the United States, many around the world. The United Nations thought he had weapons of mass destruction. So, therefore: one, we need to find out what went wrong in the intelligence gathering. … Saddam was dangerous and the world is safer without him in power."

The above translates into: "blah blah blah blah...*insert typical Bush administration catch phrase here*"

Worth it?

"Absolutly worth it"?!

You have to imagine the 1300+ families of dead American soldiers will disagree. Is the world a better place without Saddam? Of course. Would I trade billions of dollars and the lives of over 1000 Americans to take out a guy who posed no direct threat to America's shores, did not have WMD's nor the readiness or capability of constructing them, in the name of "a better place"? Absolutly not. I think the world will be a better place without Bush, but im not about to get all pre-emptive on his ass.

A better choice of words is required here, Mr. President. The results of the Iraq war to date are simple. Dead Americans, Dead people from many countries, tons of money spent, the break down and alienation of other countries, the creation of a terrorist insurgency, and, the breeding of future terrorists. Worth it?

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

President Bush said yesterday that he doesn't "see how you can be president without a relationship with the Lord," but that he is always mindful to protect the right of others to worship or not worship.

We appreciate the President not revoking religeous freedom. How thoughtful. However, The Presidency/White House is for Christians only?

He's a uniter, you know....

*-Update-*

Andrew Sullivan:

"So, out of his beneficence, he won't trample on others' religious freedom. But the White House? That's for Christians only. No Jews? Or atheists? Notice also the evangelical notion of a personal "relationship" with the Lord. That also indicates suspicion of those Christians with different approaches to the divine. I must say this is a new level of religio-political fusion in this administration. To restrict the presidency to a particular religious faith is anathema to this country's traditions and to the task of toleration. The president surely needs to retract the statement. "

Right on. Will he retract the statement? Hell no. If the president cant think of one mistake he has made in the past 4 years, he certainly wont admit to making one in the last 48 hours...

U.S. calls off search for Iraqi WMDs

The Bush administration have stopped pretending to look for WMD's.

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- U.S. inspectors have ended their search for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq in recent weeks, a U.S. intelligence official told CNN.
The United States is taking steps to determine how it received erroneous intelligence that deposed Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was developing and stockpiling nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, White House spokesman Scott McClellan said Wednesday.

I didnt catch the press conference by the president on this matter. Did you?



O.J simpson beleives the WMD's are with Nicole's "real killers".

Monday, January 10, 2005

Coble suggests pullout in Iraq

Here.

U.S. Rep. Howard Coble, dean of the state's congressional delegation and an avowedly strong supporter of President Bush, says it's time for the United States to consider withdrawing from war-ravaged Iraq.

Coble, a Republican from Greensboro, is one of the first members of Congress -- Republican or Democrat -- to say publicly that the United States should consider a pullout.

The 10-term congressman, head of the House Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security, said he is "fed up with picking up the newspaper and reading that we've lost another five or 10 of our young men and women in Iraq."




Nailing Down Gonzales.

Since Al Gonzales did more side stepping, bobbing n' weaving & juking and jiving than Barry Sanders in his prime when he sat at his hearing last week, Chris Suellentrop of Slate asks the question...again.


"By late afternoon, Leahy had become so frustrated with Gonzales' refusal to give clear answers to questions from him and other Democrats that he held aloft a bulky file that he said was filled with unanswered letters and queries addressed to Gonzales, President Bush's nominee for attorney general. "If he's confirmed, I'm sure he'll feel that he never has any duty to answer them," Leahy said. Leahy's file may have been bursting with questions, but for most of Thursday's nearly nine-hour hearing the committee's Democrats wanted an answer to just one question: Does Gonzales think the president has the power to authorize torture by immunizing American personnel from prosecution for it?"

A good read, and a persuasive case....



F-9/11 wins "Best Film"....

...Via Peoples Choice Awards.

Now, I found the movie entertaining, and didnt view it as a historical document. I could take it or leave it. I just find it interesting that despite the campaign from the right to smear Moore as un-American, un-patricotic, and all the other things right wing hard liners call people who speak out against Bush, the man is awarded a "mandate" by "the people"

Mike Moore has Capital.





Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Jeb begins his run for Prez in '08.

Ohhhh, yes. Dont be fooled.

As if Jeb Bush is really positioned here because he "has overseen Florida's recovery from hurricanes".

Siva says:

"He is not part of the government of any nation affected by the earthquake or tsunami, or any foreign aid agency, and doesn't have any special knowledge of or connection to these countries, or understanding of the native political or physical infrastructures. If left alone in say, Sri Lanka, could he even take care of himself, no less assist anyone else? This is simply a gigantic, exploitive PR ploy, to position him to ascend to the Bush throne in 2008."
Damn skippy.