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"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." Theodore Roosevelt


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Saturday, February 11, 2006

Bad Time for Bonzo

As if there wasn't enough bad news to trouble the Chimperor in the news about the additional Repugs caught out with Abramoff money, or the intelligence community protesting his lies, or the Katrina storm that won't go away, there are several other items of ill favor for our dictator wanna-be. A sampling is below.

A federal judge is considering ordering the Bush administration to produce records pertaining to the illegal domestic spying program within a 20 day deadline, as it appears they are dragging their heels on it. Strange, but the lawsuit which requests these documents didn't seem to make any MSM news sources - or at least I don't remember seeing it. But the Bushies have been sued, and may have to produce the documentation.

The U. S. Trade Deficit is at an all-time high. But of course, under Bush-onomics it's the fourth year in a row that it's reached a record high. Higher and higher.

The new Bush budget may be in danger simply because of the cuts it proposes - during an election year. So the Chimperor will get to blame that failure on Congress, of course. Planned that way? Nahhhh....

And, of course, the polls show approval ratings for Bush stuck in the toilet. I'm shocked! Shocked I tell you.

Yes, dear readers, a bad week for Bush. But that's a good week for America.

Katrina Still Rumbling

Not surprising that the Katrina failure is still under investigation, but some of the details are surprising. Here, for example, I find out from BBC that Katrina survivors held a protest march in Washington DC. But so far I've not seen this on any domestic MSM source. Why? Maybe the US MSM is still afraid of Bush? Or maybe suffering black folks just isn't 'news' anymore? However, if you search you can find domestic reports about the tens of thousands of trailers promised to the Katrina survivors that are held up in holding areas due to mis-management -which we can't even blame that on Michael Brown because he was gone before this program got messed up.

And Michael "Heckuva Job" Brownie, is now practically turning state's evidence against the Bush administration. Comparing his newer testimony before Congress with the older, it seems that he's no longer trying to protect the Busheviks. He got used, abused, and tossed to the curb, so now he's not singing from the Bush Hymnal.
"... Brown told senators he dealt directly with White House officials the day of the Aug. 29 storm, including chief of staff Andrew Card and deputy chief of staff Joe Hagin.

He also said officials from the Department of Homeland Security were getting regular briefings that day. Administration officials have said they did not realize the severe damage Katrina had caused until after the storm had passed.

Under oath, Brown told the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee that he could not explain why his appeals failed to produce a faster response.

"I expected them to cut every piece of red tape, do everything they could ... that I didn't want to hear anybody say that we couldn't do everything they humanly could to respond to this," Brown said about a video conference with administration officials — in which President Bush briefly participated — the day before Katrina hit. "Because I knew in my gut this was the bad one."

Gosh Mike, could you be in any worse trouble if you had simply taken charge and done what needed to be done without authorizations from the frigging White House? Cutting every piece of red tape, doing everything they could - that's what we ALL expected from our federal government.

Bad News For Bush

Bad news for George Bush is good news for America. Now he's claiming that he wakes up every day thinking about another attack on the US. I guess if we aren't scared enough by the 'cry wolf' strategy of the White House, we're supposed to accept the domestic spying progam simply because our pResident is scared enough by his own strategy. How can he lead us if he's so fearful? He created the very shadow that has him cringing.

Yet, even while he's making the pitch for why spying is good for us, we have current and former intelligence professionals so outraged by his 'stopped an attack on LA' lie that they're calling and e-mailing the desk at Capitol Hill Blue to tell the world that it's a lie. An outright falsehood, not even a mistake.
"The President has cheapened the entire intelligence community by dragging us into his fantasy world," says a longtime field operative of the Central Intelligence Agency. "He is basing this absurd claim on the same discredited informant who told us Al Qaeda would attack selected financial institutions in New York and Washington."

Within hours of the President’s speech Thursday claiming his administration had prevented a major attack, sources who said they were current and retired intelligence pros from the CIA, NSA, FBI and military contacted Capitol Hill Blue with angry comments disputing the President’s remarks.

“He’s full of shit,” said one sharply-worded email.

In addition, the former head of Near East Intelligence from 2000 to 2005, Paul Pillar, has come out in Foreign Affairs journal describing the manipulation of intelligence 'pre-Iraq' to build the case. Now, we all know it happened, but Mr. Pillar is naming names and specifying details and methods. Interesting reading, and for those with less time, there is a shorter BBC version here.

I had been wondering how long the career intelligence and security folks who really protect this nation would put up with a buffoon like Bush fucking up everything they've risked their lives for during their careers. Maybe this is the beginning of a 'mutiny' in which they will reveal the details of all of Bush's dirty dealings and secret programs, and of course the failures to manage or to perform associated with each and every one of them. He may think he's got a lid on things, but if these folks are called as witnesses in future impeachment or treason hearings, they'll produce documentation he didn't even know existed. In truth, all they really need to do is keep leaking all of his dirty laundry and nasty failures to the public - there are enough of them. We can only hope they're all getting fed up and ready to do something to protect from Bush what they dedicated their lives to.

Long Arm of the Jack

The longer the Abramoff scandal goes on, the more people it ensnares. It amazes me just how many people got sucked into his web just because there was a lot of ready cash in the casino business. Here now, we have Sen. Harry Reid implicated. But of course, as the Bushies get excited about the ability to point a finger at Reid, we find 3 more Repuglikans snared too.

And to Bush's statements that he doesn't know the man, even if he did have his picture taken with him, Abramoff supplies the editor of the Washingtonian magazine with an e-mail stating that he had talked to Bush nearly a dozen times.
Bush "joked with me about a bunch of things, including details of my kids," Abramoff recalled of his contacts with the president.
x---x---x---x---x---x---x---x---x---x---x---x---x---
On Thursday, White House press secretary Scott McClellan said that "what the president said still stands."

Abramoff's e-mail states that Bush "has one of the best memories of any politician I have ever met." The e-mail said that Bush's ability to recall is one of his "trademarks, though of course he can't recall that he has a great memory!"

The e-mail adds, "Perhaps he has forgotten everything. Who knows."

Forgotten everything? Perhaps he's no longer mentally capable of fulfilling the duties of office.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Cracks in the Foundation

Looks like some of the sheep are awakening. Even opposing their self-annointed shepherd - George Bush - on the global warming issue.

Funny thing - I had to find this on BBC news because it's not on MSM sites as yet. But who cares? It's still bad news for Bush, and that means it's good news for America.

McLibby

Vice President Cheney's former chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, told a grand jury he was "authorized by his superiors" to disclose classified information from an intelligence report to reporters, according to the special prosecutor in the CIA leak case.
Would you like fries with that?

WMD-istraction

Shortly after 9/11, al Qaeda began planning to use shoe bombers to hijack a commercial airplane and fly it into the tallest building in Los Angeles, California, President Bush said Thursday
I can't help but wonder, if true, why wouldn't this have been made public in October 2004?

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Plan for the long war....

The Quadrennial Defense Review Report was released earlier this week. 113 pages, but not too difficult a read, because it's laid out like a sales brochure for 20-acre mini ranchettes in the Nevada desert. Maybe it is a sales brochure. Read it and see what you can find.

Switcheroo!

Our pResident has just told an audience how the war on terror prevented an attack in Los Angeles by the very guy who organized 9-11, Khalid Sheik Mohammed.
The president filled in details on Thursday.

He said that Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the alleged mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks who was captured in 2003, had already begun planning the West Coast operation in October, just after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. One of Mohammed's key planners was Hambali, the alleged operations chief of the al-Qaida related terrorist group Jemaah Islamiyah. Instead of recruiting Arab hijackers, Hambali found Southeast Asian men who would be less likely to arouse suspicion and who were sent to meet with Osama Bin Laden, Bush said.

Funny, I always thought Bush told us that Osama planned the 9-11 attack, but notice that part about "Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the alleged mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks who was captured". Didn't we invade Afghanistan to get Osama Bin Laden because he was the guy behind the attacks? Didn't we invade Iraq partly because Saddam Hussein had 'supported' Osama Bin Laden - the guy behind the attacks? Didn't Bush say he was going to get Bin Laden for blowing up the WTC? Didn't he say he could bring him in at the time and place of his choosing?

But now, we have two things going on here. One, a switch from Osama to Khalid Mohammed. Hell, Condi Rice and Rummy will be repeating this bullshit before the week is over, and today is Thursday. And two, he was CAPTURED! So what is the real deal here? Why switch from Osama to Sheik Mohammed? Because we CAUGHT Khalid Mohammed, and Bush can't catch or kill Bin Laden and doesn't want to have to face that fact any more, so he's trying to make it go away, THATS WHY! By painting Khalid Mohammed as the bad guy now Bush can claim that he's actually done something about 9-11 besides tell lies and make fuck-ups. He's hoping to paint himself as a hero, instead of the braying jackass he really is.

Just pay attention and watch the spinners do their work. It'll be pathetic, but funny too.

Dr. Evil Rewarded by the Team

Tom DeLay has been rewarded with a seat on the House Appropriations Committee, as well as a seat on the Justice Committee. As you will recall, Tom is the guy behind the K-Street Project, and apparently the brains behind the Abramoff bribery, kick-backs and buy-a-representative (and possibly a president) graft scandal. Ironic, isn't it? The very guy who masterminded the biggest government corruption carnival of the last hundred years, is now given a much bigger pile of money to sit on, and some amount of contol over prosecution of criminals like himself and his stooge Abramoff. He'll have control of federal purse strings and can now reward his friends with much larger piles of money than Abramoff could carry in his trench coat, as well as having some level of ability to protect Abramoff and the dirty Republicans.

And the pathetically corrupt GOP wants us to think they're 'cleaning up'?

Congress Making Own Wiki Changes

The problem with an 'open' encyclopedia like Wikipedia is that the very hooligans and corrupt politicians who deserve to have their names sullied publicly have access to the thing and can write about how sainted they are. Some MoC's have caught on and have been found to have their staffers get onto Wikipedia and 'clean up' the information on them - removing unkept campaign promises, removing voting records, changing statements about military service, etc. Hell, if Wiki can't stop them, we'll have Kerry listed as a deserter and Bush as a war hero.

You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet, heh-heh.

NSA spying is peanuts compared to ADVISE, which will track everything you do and buy, including your comments here. (Of course the Pentagon is already doing that via DARPA, but this is Homeland Securitat.) If you didn't feel violated yet, you will soon enough.

Pay cash, wear sunglasses, go completely Carmen San Diego. Why make it easy for them?

Brownie Points


"Unless there is specific direction otherwise from the president, including an assurance the president will provide a legal defense to Mr. Brown if he refuses to testify as to these matters, Mr. Brown will testify if asked about particular communications," the lawyer wrote.

Brown's desire "is that all facts be made public."
Interesting times, indeed.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Coretta's Funeral

Doug Thompson reviews Coretta King's funeral and some of the speakers. A regular Bush-bash. Sorry I missed it.
George W. Bush’s pathetic attempt to turn Coretta Scott King’s funeral into a politically-advantageous photo op fell flatter than his State of the Union speech Tuesday – a textbook example of just how out of touch the President has become with the American people.

Question

If a free people elect a pResident who then claims and assumes the powers of a banana republic dictator, is that nation still 'free'?

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Bipartisan Bush Budget Bashing

Seems that the Chimperor may be offending even his own flying monkeys with the new budget proposals. He's cutting funding to education and medical care (among other things), the very issues that will get the Rabid Right voted out of office next fall. And he's meeting with resistance over it, even from his own party.

Not that I think the Republicans in general give a runny crap about any working people. I suspect they think we're all cattle, or just unprocessed Soylent Green. They certainly care more about the health of their investment portfolios than they do about the health of the nation, the Constitution, or the people they allegedly serve.

But they do care about the votes, which surprises me given the Repug corruption in the voting machine agenda. Apparently it's not completely controlled as yet. And caring about the votes means that they don't want to have to go back to doing divorce law, insurance cases and pro bono legal aid. (OH God, no. Not legal aid, with all those smelly poor working folks coming into the office!) So wanting to stay in office might just translate into votes against the Bush agenda. The entire GOP Rabid Right pillaging effort may be cut short because the Chimperor can't control himself, and is setting the party to fighting among themselves as a result.

They've already started to self-destruct. It's going to be a fun thing to watch.

Gonzo Asserts Bush Might Be Above the Law

As I read these accounts of Gonzo's testimony before Congress, I'm repeatedly kicked in my happy place by some of the things Gonzo says to justify Bush's attempted takeover of the US Government as his private litter-box. Here's the most recent:
"The president and the Justice Department have a constitutional duty to faithfully execute the laws," said Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy, the committee's top Democrat. "Nobody is above the law, not even the president of the United States."
--x---x---x---x---x---x---x---x---x---x---
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., asked if the Bush administration had issued "any other secret order or directive" that would be prohibited by law. Said Gonzales: "The president has not authorized any conduct that I'm aware of that is in contravention of law."

Duh. Of course Gonzales wouldn't be aware of anything 'in contravention of law'. The way this bozo reads the law, torture is legal, invading nations that haven't attacked us is legal, detaining citizens without probable cause is legal, secret detention of citizens without access to family or legal representation and without charges is legal, and spying on citizens in violation of standing federal statutes is legal. So what COULD Bush do that Gonzales would consider 'in contravention of law'?

Maybe Sen. Feinstein's question should have stopped at "any other secret order or directive", period. I submit that Gonzales would try to justify Bush naming himself 'President for Life' if that's what Bush wanted to do. Gonzales is not an Attorney General, he's a Bush pocket puppet.



McCain Sold for How Much?

After months of posturing about reforms, formerly respected and still war hero John McCain seems to have sold out to the Rabid Right and is now attacking Barack Obama for 'partisan' posturing on the supposedly -bi-partisan reform committee. Seems to me that McCain has been selling out his 'political capital' as a war hero by sucking up to the Bushies faster than Bush's wars suck up tax dollars, and I just have to wonder why.

Maybe he's fishing for a 'Bush-blessing' as the next presidential candidate?

Gonzo Says Washington Authorized Electronic Surveillance

Yesterday our AG Alberto Torture Gonzales told Congress that Washington, Lincoln and Roosevelt had all authorized electronic surveillance on a far broader scale than Bush is using to spy on us. And nobody in Congress seemed to think it odd that George Washington authorized ELECTRONIC spying.

The clip courtesy of Crooks and Liars. Listen to the liar here.

Monday, February 06, 2006

GOP Mutating Over Stem Cells

We're beginning to see the GOP tearing itself apart like a monster than can't stop eating everything and eventually blows itself up from it's unsatiable appetite. Aside from the budget, Iraq mismanagement and theft and lies, illegal spying on citizens, and corruption, we can now add Stem Cells to the list of GOP diseases. The battle lines are being drawn within the party.
The issue has divided Republicans, pitting former first lady Nancy Reagan against President Bush and Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., against religious conservatives.

Reagan and others argue that the research offers scientific promise that could cure diseases such as Alzheimer's that her late husband, former President Reagan, suffered from for years. Anti-abortion conservatives contend that the research destroys days-old fertilized embryos and amounts to the taking of human life.

Frist angered conservatives last year when he reversed course to support expanded government-funded research on embryonic stem cells. In August 2001, Bush imposed restrictions on public funding for newly developed embryonic stem cell lines.

The sooner these power mad, cash crazed, vote stealing people haters get their little 'cosa nostra' broken up, the better for the rest of us. May God grant that they all someday need the very medical technology that they are trying to destroy.

A Million Votes Against Bush?

Louisana is going to send directions for absentee voting to nearly a million voters displaced by Hurricane Katrina. There will be additional voters in other gulf states who've been displaced too.

I would venture to suggest that those votes can already be counted - by the Democrats.

Illegal Spying Hearings

Even Senator Arlen Spectator is unhappy about the Bush / Gonzales program to spy on Americans in violation of the law. The hearings are happening today.
The top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy, predicted that the committee would have to subpoena the administration to obtain internal documents that lay out the legal basis for the program. Justice Department officials have declined, citing in part the confidential nature of legal communications.
--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--
Sen. Russell Feingold, D-Wis., was expected to press Gonzales on why, during Gonzales' confirmation hearings last year to be attorney general, he dismissed as "hypothetical" a situation in which the government conducted warrantless eavesdropping. The NSA program was long in place by then, and Gonzales was White House counsel.
--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--x--
The Washington Post, citing unnamed sources, reported Sunday that the program involves computers sifting through hundreds of thousands of communications to select for human review. The program has resulted in thousands of conversations in which someone in the U.S. has been at least briefly monitored, the Post said.

The Post report said that nearly all of them were quickly dismissed as insignificant and that perhaps no more than 10 solid leads a year have been pursued with further domestic surveillance, usually with a court warrant.

But Gen. Michael Hayden, the No. 2 intelligence official in the government, said it was "not true" that "we somehow grab the content of communications and then use the content of the communications to determine which of the communications we really want to listen to."

"When NSA goes after the content of a communication under this authorization from the president, the NSA has already established its reasons for being interested in that specific communication," Hayden said on "Fox News Sunday."

But General, that means you have probable cause, so why not just spy and report it to the FISA court?
(Senator Edward M.) Kennedy said the eavesdropping program could actually weaken national security, raising the prospect that terror suspects could go free if courts rule evidence collected from such surveillance to be tainted.

"We're taking a risk with national security which I think is unwise," Kennedy said.

"We don't believe prosecutions are going to be jeopardized because of this program," Gonzales told Kennedy.

I think the important thing about Gonzo's defense of this program is what it indicates about the Bushevik attempt to take over the national government with George Bush as dictator. He already has the power under the Patriot Act to make you disappear. Now he's fishing for reasons.

GOP Sweep in Ought Six?

Well, we're already starting with the stories about all of the potential 'glitches' to come as a result of the Help America Vote Act of 2002 disaster. This is the deal where the feds help buy / force local voting boards to install new electronic voting machines controlled by Diebold software. Diebold's president had promised to 'deliver the election' in 2004, and damned if Bush didn't win.

The software does not provide for any audit capability, and federal courts have upheld the intellectual property rights of Diebold to prevent any examination of the software. In essence, that means that it could easily be simple - for every five votes cast, show 3 for the GOP and 2 for the Democrats. Literally, with no rights to look at it, the situation could be that bad. And Bush controlled courts have refused to permit any audit of the software by election commissions to ensure that it is accurately counting our votes.

But that is not addressed in the list of woes. Those are much blander in tone, but just as dangerous to the voting public:

Linda Lamone, administrator of the Maryland Board of Elections and president of the National Association of State Election Directors, says widespread worries about glitches include:

• Is there enough time to educate voters and poll workers, many of them older and not proficient with computers, before Election Day?


• Will there be adequate tech support from voting-machine manufacturers?

• How will the 25 states that require a paper backup for their computerized machines handle that - and which record will be the official one for any recount?


So, is this story on the level, or is it 'planting seeds' for the voting hijack in November?

Wilkerson interview

On a comment from one of our readers, I found a link to a where Colin Powell's former Chief of Staff Lawrence Wilkerson admits having participated in a hoax on the American people and Congress, and the rest of the world, regarding Iraq WMD intelligence. This is the short version, but it has a link to the full interview text, here.

To be fair to Wilkerson, he didn't do it intentionally. In fact, he claims it was the result of mistakes.
I have to believe that. Otherwise I have to believe some rather nefarious things about some fairly highly placed people in the intelligence community and perhaps elsewhere.
+++++++++++++++++++++
So we have a significant problem in this nation with our intelligence community. And, by the way, I don't think it's fixed in any way. Yet. This administration has really done nothing to fix it. And-- so I-- I'm familiar with intelligence failure.

However, this particular one seems to me to warrant a lot more investigation than it has to this point warranted. And I take in the recognition the Robb Silberman commission, the 9/11 commission and a host of other lesser-- investigations that have attempted to look at this. And the phase two investigation now going on in the Congress, which I think as long as the Republicans control the Congress will not be a-- an investigation that reveals very much. But I think we really need to take a hard look at how not just the intelligence failures I've enumerated occurred, but how this particular one did. Because it could turn out to be one of the worst in our history.
++++++++++++++++++++
I'm worried and I would rather have the discussion and debate in the process we've designed than I would a dictate from a dumb strongman.

I wonder. Just how what will it take before Congress will admit they were lied to and decide to do something about it?

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Leaner Times Ahead

Bush's new budget will cut spending on domestic programs, but of course heavily increase military spending.
"Every year of my presidency, we've reduced the growth of non-security discretionary spending, and last year you passed bills that cut this spending," Bush said last week. "This year my budget will cut it again."
++++++++++++++++++++++
The Pentagon would receive a nearly 5 percent increase in its budget, to $439.3 billion, defense officials said, with an additional $120 billion earmarked for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Those war funds would be spread over both the current budget year and fiscal 2007, which begins Oct. 1.

I wonder. Is there any way we can force an independent psychiatric exam on this guy?







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