Our Savior

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Meals Ready to Eat (MREs) But Were Afraid to Eat

Here. Yes, there are actual forums dedicated to the enjoyment of MREs. The Thai Chicken is supposed to be superb.

WARNING, however. This was also the last Web page I visited just before I took ill Thursday night. Not that I'm saying there's a correlation between the two but... I feel obligated to mention that fact.

Sorry for My Absence

I've been in la-la land for just under two days with some really odd virus.

Ask me, and I'll tell you I'd been awake for about 40 hours straight with everything in spasm and smelling like something dead. Ask my partner and he'll tell you I spent most of the time delirious, calling for my mother (uh... let's just say that's not like me under any conditions (cough)), or saying that the hurricane was coming because I was a bad person or that the water was all contaminated everywhere because the Bushes kept flushing their toilets into the public water supply. He also said he found me asleep in the shower twice.

The motto of this story? Don't eat egg rolls of questionable vintage.


Amber, Amber, Amber: You Are Not So Bright (Again and Again)


FRESNO, California (AP) -- The former mistress of convicted murderer Scott Peterson is back in the spotlight after a DNA test showed that her first child was not fathered by the man who was paying child support.

Anthony Flores, 29, has been paying Frey $175 a month for nearly four years, his attorney, Glenn Wilson, said Wednesday. The father of the 4-year-old girl is actually Fresno restaurant owner Christopher Funch, Wilson said.

No one answered the telephone at Porky's Rib House on Wednesday, and Funch did not have a listed home number.

Wilson said Flores was preparing to file a court motion seeking visitation rights, which he has been denied, when the man received word last week that he was not the child's father.

Frey's attorney, Gloria Allred, said Wednesday that her client never intended to deceive Flores.
"Amber, in good faith, always believed that Mr. Flores was her child's father," Allred said.
Amber, in her own defense, admitted: "I'm a skank with a heart of gold and a uterus of no return."

Rumsfeld Thanks Katrina for Handing Him More Unbridled Power

You have to read this from "Early Warning" by Wm Arkin.

Speaking of What Rick Santorum Does to People (And it Ain't Pretty!)...

From Attaturk at Rising Hegemon:

Earlier today, in the wake of this post, I promised that I would engage in no more bestiality influenced humor until something happened which pointed out the stupidity of Rick Santorum. I joked I'd be doing such joke by this afternoon.Well I was right. From CapitolBuzz:
A Philadelphia grand jury this morning issued a scathing critique of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, saying its former archbishops and other leaders concealed and facilitated clergy sex abuse of children for decades.

According to Santorum's logic, people in Philadelphia must be responsible for this sex abuse. After all, this is the same asshole who blamed the people of Boston for the clergy sex abuse that occurred there.

So just for Rick Santorum, here's a tri-spicies menage a trois.

Little Ricky any comment?

OK, Who's Sending Karlo Koolaid Made with New Orleans Tap Water?

Be careful. People who blush at the very term, "chicken breast" should NOT visit.

Clearly, this worries me. I respect Karlo and I know he would never pull such a stunt were he not under the evil influences of darker forces like Karl Rove and Kelly Rippa and maybe that al Qaeda cuppiecake, Janet Jackson.

Here, Karlo is not only pandering, I think he's spent a little too much time reading the wisdom according to Rick Santorum. This is very disturbing but, much as I look at YellowPages.com, I can't find a Betty Ford clinic that specifically addresses this.

Halliburton and Bechtel's Profitable Gulf Coast Wage Cut

Josh Marshall at Talking Points Memo is all over this issue and whether anyone but Dems will sign on to a law trying to repeal this disastrous law to allow HalliCheneyBurton and BechRumsfeldTel to pay people below the going wage for some of the worst, most dangerous, most heart and mind breaking work in the world.

Hurray, Crew of Flight 292 Jet Blue!

Splendid job!


Well, as Bad as My Evening is Going....

at least I'm not on that Jet Blue flight.

Good luck to the 146 folks on board and to those trying to help them come in.

Supremely Good Reasoning

Posted at Corrente:

"Paramount among the responsibilities of a free press is the duty to prevent any part of the government from deceiving the people."--Hugo Black, Supreme Court Justice

Any of the $5 blowjob, spineless, CYA "mainstream" (i.e., paid off) media listening?

Doug Forrester: What a Man!

Want a Worthy Cause to Join?

There's always the Impeach Bush Coalition.

Nobody Does Expensive, Abusive, NumbNutz Cronyism Like the Bushies

Posted by Cookie Jill at Skippy:

don't put julie on ice, ice babynow the gop party is jumpingwith big bass kicked in, bushco peeps are pumpin'quick to the point, to the point all fakingthey're cooking alibhis like a pound of baconburning rules cuz they think they're nimblegoing all out with morals big as thimblesice baby all vanilla, ice ice baby all vanilla
    the bush administration is seeking to appoint a lawyer with little immigration or customs experience to head the troubled law enforcement agency that handles those issues, prompting sharp criticism from some employee groups, immigration advocates and homeland security experts.

    ...her uncle is air force gen. richard b. myers, the departing chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. she married chertoff's current chief of staff, john f. wood, on saturday.- wapo

    ...but then myers getting the nod for the top ice post should come as no surprise. her predecessor was actually appointed to one of the highest-profile u.s. attorney posts in the country (in manhattan) after running up a huge budget deficit at ice (hundreds of millions of dollars in red ink).

Mitt Romney, Mass Gov, to be Named Katrina Czar?

Josh Marshall at Talking Points Memo has this.

But let me ask a question: just how MANY different bosses are in charge of Katrina? I can name 5-6 now, aside from Karl Rove who took over for Dick Cheney who took over for Bush who didn't do anything except photo ops. Then we're paying some big contractor to shadow the work of the folks in charge of Katrina.

And yet the whole Katrina situation remains an abyssmal mess, all the WH press reports to the contrary not being exactly true (quel surprise!).

Juan Cole on Iraq This Week

MissM points us to a post I read earlier and should have thought to post. Gives some missing background on events in Iraq this week.

From Juan Cole at Informed Comment (go read it):

Two British undercover men seem to have seen something suspicious and intervened. But somehow they got involved in a firefight with Iraqi government police. The two Britons were slightly wounded and were captured by Iraqi police (which seems to be penetrated by the Badr Corps, the Sadrists and other Shiite paramilitaries.)

Then a Sadrist crowd tried to storm the jail where the two British special forces operatives were being held by the provincial government. The Shiite crowds appear to have intended to hold them as hostages to be traded for Fartusi et al.

It was at that point that the British tanks rolled against the jail.

In freeing the two Britons, they inadvertently let 150 other prisoners escape, presumably some of them involved in the guerrilla movement. Two Iraqis were killed in related violence. Then crowds attacked British military vehicles, setting 2 afire with Molotov cocktails.

The entire episode reeks of "dual sovereignty," in which there are two distinct sources of government authority. Social historian Charles Tilly says that dual sovereignty signals a revolutionary situation.

Some Captions Write Themselves

Roxanne at Rox Populi posts this picture under "write your own caption".

Mine: As Barbara Bush stole quietly to the crib while "Poppy" Bush slept, she contemplated the question, "Am I doing the world a favor if I retroactively abort George Jr now? What if, God forbid, he becomes a president?"


CK shares this post from Liz Michael re: New Orleans and the mayor. Thoughts?

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin narrowly escaped having a universal death warrant placed on his head last week. How do I know this to be true? Because I was the one who planned to call for his execution.

Last week, Ray Nagin called for the confiscation of all weapons from all people except police officers. Such an act would have left most of New Orleans defenseless against roving bands of armed thugs. And I mean the ones that weren't wearing police or military uniforms. Accordingly, I had written an advisory that because of that order, New Orleans Police should be considered a hostile force by Americans, their officers should be shot, their vehicles and offices bombed, and their destruction in whatever manner. And the person who gave the order, Mayor Nagin, would have been the first person on the list I would have advised The People to go after.

Fortunately, common sense prevailed. Apparently, the New Orleans Police themselves, and several military troops, advised the powers that be that this was not going to happen. Many cited constitutional reasons. Others just plain weren't going to go in to do the job and get shot themselves by law abiding citizens enforcing their rights. Some just didn't want the victimization of the People of New Orleans by armed thugs not wearing police uniforms to actually be on their conscience. So the order was rescinded. Quietly and without much fanfare. Probably because of embarrassment.

Albeit I am a sinner, following the example of Yaheveh, to wit: repent of your sin, and I will repent of the judgment I had earmarked. Since Ray Nagin and the New Orleans Police reversed themselves and decided not to pursue this unconstitutional avenue, I too, will reverse myself, and not call for their assassination.

But THIS is how close it came.
There's a lot more there, and prepare to take time to digest. Some I agree with, some I'm appalled by (on various levels). Suspect you may feel the same, but I'd love to see some other thoughts.

Ouch - Cat 5 (And No, We're Not Talking Network Cable)

Rita - the hurricane and not the Mr. Moose sounding female impersonator from MSNBC - has just been upgraded to Category 5 with 165 mph winds.

I wonder what Mr. Bush has planned. Perhaps he can eat some chunky pretzels and play a little fiddle while watching a ball game as he considers whether global warming is just a left-wing conspiracy theory.

Questions Not to Be Asked About New Orleans

Blogcritics brings us an interesting take on peri- and post-Katrina New Orleans, entitled, "Questions That May Not Be Asked..."

Go read while I finish eating the apple that fell from the apple tree across from my office and bopped me on the head this afternoon while I was waiting to bathe the dog, who was hiding from me so I couldn't bathe him.

(Hey, it was that or write about file and folder security under NTFS in Windows XP.)

In the Those Payday Loan People are Approved by the Government and They're Here to Hurt Help You" Department

While I pointed to posts by Xavier and Peter at Pibbshow last night, I especially want to call your attention to this particular post re: the pushiness of the folks behind "Payday Loan" shops where they'll give you $250, $500, or $1,000 to tide you over to the next pay day only to charge so much that your one week loan easily turns into a multi-month, higher-than-the-sky interest rates horror.

Strangely though, Bush seems to be running our economy like someone dependent on payday loan shops. We're scrambling and paying the interest, however.

John Roberts

I'm dismayed to read today that Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) will vote in favor of John Roberts for the Supreme Court Chief Justice spot.

Yes, I know Roberts' confirmation is pretty much a given, but I think he's a bad choice, someone with a legal history of opposing the rights and quality of life of individuals rather in favor of corporations or the US, which I'm starting to occasionally believe is the world's biggest organized crime family. Sadly, I say this latter point with far less humor intended than you may first think. This issue breaks my heart.

Brit Attack on Iraqi Jail


[Update Editor: Now I see that porn dialog writer is the leading career pick followed by John Bolton's dominatrix. But I'm not sure if this is more a statement about me or my audience. (Cough - grin)]

I'm resisting the urge to look in my Web logs to see who it was who cast the vote for "porn dialog writer" under my new career "when I grow up" poll.

(Why wouldn't I look it up? Well a) I respect your privacy b) I'm lazy and c) I have a policy never to do anything John Ashcroft would do. But a porn dialog writer? Really. Didn't I mention I used to teach Sunday school?

Oh wait... one thing many of our "family values" pols and moralists have taught us is that you can call yourself an excellent Christian while screwing just about anything and everything over, under, and backwards and that those commandments are for other people to follow since God gives these great beings "special" exceptions.

More on the Indicted, Corrupt Bushie

Also from Think Progress:

The FBI complaint filed against David Safavian yesterday accuses him of lying to ethics officers at the General Services Administration, where he served as chief of staff. Safavian informed the officials that Jack Abramoff, who had invited Safavian on a golfing trip to Scotland, had “no business before GSA.” In fact, Safavian was already actively helping Abramoff acquire control of two GSA-managed properties in the Washington area, one of which was a 40-acre plot that became the campus for a Hebrew school that Abramoff founded called the Eshkol Academy.

Come again? Jack Abramoff, the corrupt, scandal-plagued lobbyist, founded a Hebrew academy? Yes, but it was a distinctly Abramoff-style venture.

In 2004, he thought the school would be a prime place to make money off the lives of tribal elders. Abramoff recommended that one of his clients, the then-broke Tigua tribe, retain him at no cost. At the same time, he suggestioned they allow Eshkol Academy to “buy term life insurance policies on tribal elders and receive the benefits upon their death, with the money then channeled back to Abramoff.” According to the Washington Post, some of the money that went into the school was used to buy “two Zamboni ice-cleaning machines, even though it did not own a hockey rink.”

The school was closed a short time later, but the scandals persisted. In May ‘04, Abramoff’s assets were frozen by a Montgomery County, MD judge “in connection with a lawsuit over unpaid wages filed by employees of a religious academy that Abramoff founded.” Abramoff had shorted thirteen teachers a quarter of their pay when Eshkol shut down.

Poll Up (Again)

Again, folks, I really need a new profession. So help me choose one at the top right.

If you don't like the choices, feel free to write an additional option in as a comment. (Cough)

And yes, I've already considered law school but I don't like to argue with people.

21 Bushies Involved in PlameGate

ThinkProgress has the - and we have to pay most of them - crooks' and traitors' gallery.

So None of My Dozen Posts Have Appeared?

Well, uh... remember to vote for my new career. :)

Rove Sent Immigration Memo: Message is to Discredit Dems

See Raw Story:

Smith goes on to suggest that "Liberals can easily and accurately be painted as opposing enforcement." His office did not return a call seeking comment.

NY Daily News: Bush's Ground Zero "Bullhorn Moment" More Bullshit


I'm amazed that anyone is amazed that it took George W. Bush three days to show up in New Orleans after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina.

That's exactly how long it took him to show up at Ground Zero after 9/11.

So it mystifies me that the pundits and the cable gasbags keep telling us that George W. Bush missed his "bullhorn moment" in New Orleans.

No, he didn't.

Because his bullhorn moment in New York City was just as late and just as disgraceful as his fumbling handling of the Katrina carnage.

I wish I had a bullhorn to shout just how tired I am of hearing about how wonderful George W. Bush's "bullhorn moment" was.

It will go down as one of the worst moments in American history because when he stood on the smoldering ruins amid the dust of the dead it was through that bullhorn that Bush's Big Lie was first shouted to the world that the people who knocked down those buildings would soon be hearing from us.

Bushies' Priority

FBI Seeking to do battle with porn.

The FBI is joining the Bush administration's War on Porn. And it's looking for a few good agents.

Early last month, the bureau's Washington Field Office began recruiting for a new anti-obscenity squad. Attached to the job posting was a July 29 Electronic Communication from FBI headquarters to all 56 field offices, describing the initiative as "one of the top priorities" of Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales and, by extension, of "the Director." That would be FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III.

Mischievous commentary began propagating around the water coolers at 601 Fourth St. NW and its satellites, where the FBI's second-largest field office concentrates on national security, high-technology crimes and public corruption.

The new squad will divert eight agents, a supervisor and assorted support staff to gather evidence against "manufacturers and purveyors" of pornography -- not the kind exploiting children, but the kind that depicts, and is marketed to, consenting adults.
Gee, Osama bin Laden or a poorly made, uninteresting sex tape. Hmmm... which is a greater danger?

Ariana Huffington: John Bolton, Judy Miller, Karl Rove, and Valerie Plame

You should read this: I've always believed that Bolton and Rove are part of PlameGate right up to their forked tongues and yellow evil cat like devil's eyes.

And isn't it so nice that John Bolton made a very special trip to visit Judy in prison.

The Brits Are NOT Happy; Hungry Americans Probably Aren't Either

From The Mirror of London:

HUNDREDS of tons of British food aid shipped to America for starving Hurricane Katrina survivors is to be burned.

US red tape is stopping it from reaching hungry evacuees.

Instead tons of the badly needed Nato ration packs, the same as those eaten by British troops in Iraq, has been condemned as unfit for human consumption.

And unless the bureaucratic mess is cleared up soon it could be sent for incineration.

One British aid worker last night called the move "sickening senselessness" and said furious colleagues were "spitting blood".

The food, which cost British taxpayers millions, is sitting idle in a huge warehouse after the Food and Drug Agency recalled it when it had already left to be distributed.

Scores of lorries headed back to a warehouse in Little Rock, Arkansas, to dump it at an FDA incineration plant.

The Ministry of Defence in London said last night that 400,000 operational ration packs had been shipped to the US.

But officials blamed the US Department of Agriculture, which impounded the shipment under regulations relating to the import and export of meat.

The aid worker, who would not be named, said: "This is the most appalling act of sickening senselessness while people starve."

More Hurricane HiJinx

Xavier and Peter at PibbShow have several good, short pieces, from missing ice to all the MREs (meals ready to expire.. er... eat) and to the "wonders" of those payday loans for desperate people.

Go peek. I'll be here playing with my dart board until you return. You'll never guess whose picture in on this week's bulls eye.


Does Anyone Quite Understand What the Brits Did in Iraq

and is willing to explain it to the rest of the class?

Thank you.

While I Have a Slew of Stuff to Post

...please feel free to take the poll to the right which tells me what I should do when I quit my "day job". (choke)

With a New Storm Bearing Down

A bit of humor, offered by my friend, Terri:

A man died and went to heaven. As he stood in front of St. Peter at the Pearly Gates, he saw a huge wall of clocks behind him. He asked, "What are all those clocks?"

St. Peter answered, "Those are Lie-Clocks. Everyone on earth has a Lie-Clock.
Every time you lie, the hands on your clock will move."

"Oh," said the man, "whose clock is that?"

"That's Mother Teresa's. The hands have never moved, indicating that she never told a lie."

"Incredible," said the man. "And whose clock is that one?"

St. Peter responded, "That's Abraham Lincoln's clock. The hands have moved twice, telling us that Abe told only two lies in his entire life."

"Where's President Bush's clock?" asked the man.

"Bush's clock is in Jesus' office. He's using it as a ceiling fan."
And the fan's running so fast, Jesus' office may launch into space.

Just How Bad Is Nola's Sludge?

From Wired:

Before Hurricane Katrina even reached New Orleans, scientists warned of a "toxic gumbo" that would fill the giant soup bowl of a city. Now that their predictions have come true, specialists are turning their attention to the next big challenge: the leftovers.

As the water recedes, a disgusting muck coats the surfaces of buildings and streets. But it might be less dangerous than first feared.

The simple passage of time will cure the Big Easy of many of its ills, according to specialists in germ and chemical threats. To say New Orleans has become a giant toxic waste dump is "too strong," said Danny Reible, chair of Environmental Health Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin.

One reason for the optimism is that the nature of the New Orleans flood might actually result in less thick mud for residents and workers to cope with. In typical floods, "you've got this river that has been rampaging and carrying soil from everywhere in the watershed with it," said Reible, a former professor of chemical engineering at Louisiana State University. "Here, in a way it was a slow trickle, by comparison, that came through a breech in the levee. As a result it probably didn't bring in nearly as much ... mud."

It's also promising that the chemical components of some pollutants, like oil and gasoline, will float to the top and either evaporate or be washed away during the pumping of the city, Reible said.

Still, heavier components of oil and gas will simply sink into the muck, along with chemicals in pesticides and herbicides. But Reible and others think there will be an even bigger hazard -- germs.

Dire predictions about huge outbreaks of disease in New Orleans haven't come true, despite the hundreds or thousands of residents who continue to wade through the polluted water every day. Still, there will be plenty of hazards even when the flooding is gone, said Dr. Philip M. Tierno, director of microbiology and clinical immunology at New York University Medical Center and author of The Secret Life of Germs.

Bush Wants to Use Katrina as Launch Board for Using Military for Domestic Policing

It's amazing some nights that I don't shoot myself. Not owning a gun helps.

From the Christian Science Monitor:

As Washington picks through the lessons learned from hurricane Katrina, there is a growing conviction that the only organization with the skills, expertise, and resources needed to respond quickly to a catastrophe of such magnitude is the American military.

President Bush suggested a larger disaster relief role for the armed forces in his national address last week, and Congress has indicated it will take up the issue this autumn. Though the topic has emerged at other troubled times - most recently 9/11 - Congress has always avoided amending Posse Comitatus, the law that has kept active-duty soldiers out of civilian law-enforcement affairs since Reconstruction.

Anger over the scenes of chaos in New Orleans in the days after the hurricane, however, seems to have shifted the political landscape. It is an issue of profound importance both to the Pentagon and to the country at large, raising questions about the boundaries between the armed forces and American society - as well as the military's ability to press the war on terror abroad if it receives a new homeland mission.

"There's a strong historical precedent against doing this," says Michael O'Hanlon, a defense
analyst at the Brookings Institution here. "But now we've got a real reason."

The difference is the scope of the destruction and the dire results of the delayed response, scholars say. During previous disasters, local responders were able to help many victims, while others were able to manage without power or shelter. Katrina, however, completely incapacitated local first-responders, and in the days before help arrived, New Orleans was beset by anarchy.

As officials look at what went wrong - and wonder what to do if a future disaster similarly eviscerates local responders - their attention has turned to the military. Clearly, the armed forces are best prepared to deploy quickly to devastated areas, bringing not only a clear command structure, but an array of resources ideally suited for difficult work - from mobile communication systems to troops trained for the most taxing conditions. In his Thursday address, Mr. Bush called the armed forces "the institution of our government most capable of massive logistical operations on a moment's notice."

So Procurement is What They Call it Now? (wink wink nudge nudge)

From Tom at Corrente:

The head of procurement for the Bush Administration was just arrested in just the latest chapter of the Abramoff-DeLay corruption investigation.

I repeat, the guy in charge of making sure all government contracts are on the up and up just got arrested for corruption.

But I'm sure that we can all expect good honest contracts for contractors on the $200B we'll spend to clean up the Gulf Coast, right?

Oh yeah, the North Korea thing has already fallen apart.Now that's a friggin surprise, right?

It's all falling in now, isn't it?Pass the popcorn.


Calling Mr. Rove....

Congress critters are demanding more investigation into the Valerie Plame affair. Here, from Gaelic Starover:

...from the office of Congressman Maurice Hinchey:"
    Troubled by what they see as violations of federal law that prohibit making false and fraudulent statements to Congress, Congressman Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) and 40 of his House colleagues today sent a letter to U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald asking that he expand his investigation of who in the Bush Administration revealed to the news media that Valerie Plame, the wife of Ambassador Joseph Wilson, was a covert agent for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

    Hinchey and his colleagues urged Fitzgerald, who was designated as special prosecutor for the case, to examine the causes behind the exposure of Plame's identity -- specifically, the Bush Administration's false and fraudulent claims in January 2003 that Iraq had sought uranium for a nuclear weapon, which the Administration used as one of the key grounds to justify the invasion of Iraq."
Mr. Fitzgerald would do well to extend the investigation even further and include the White House's leak of Muhammad Naeem Noor Khan's identity to the press.This leak gave a "heads-up" to terrorists in several countries and may made the July 7th bomobings in London possible.

Also, it shows a pattern and clearly demonstrates that the Bush Administration is willing do endanger human lives if they can calculate that it will stregthen themselves politically.

Note to Judy Miller: Martyrdom for Karl Rove Isn't Quite All it's Cracked Up to Be, Eh?

From Ed & Pub:

NEW YORK Judith Miller of The New York Times, who's been incarcerated for two and a half months for refusing to testify about her source in the Valerie Plame case, is supposed to get out of jail late next month at the latest.

But at least one of her lawyers is not certain it will happen.

Although Miller is due to be released when the federal grand jury closes its investigation of the case on Oct. 28, special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald could seek an extension or ask that a new grand jury be convened.

"The prosecutor in open court talked about the possibility of convening a new grand jury," Abrams told E&P Monday, referring to the original sentencing hearing. When Miller was put behind bars on July 6, the sentence was for 18 months or until the grand jury ends its investigation."The sentence imposed by the judge would end on the 28th," Abrams said. "We're hoping that it will end then. I am just not going to go beyond that."
I wonder how she accessorizes with the orange jumpsuit

House Speaker Hastert Warned Months Ago that FEMA Readiness and Resources Were Being Raided

Read it and steam. Denny knew the Bushies were stealing from funds and such there to help in disasters and he, whore he is, allowed it to happen.

If only one person - Mr Bush (who is really Mr Rove and/or Cheney) - is going to decide everything in Washington, we don't need to pay hundreds of Congress critters to be there to rubber stamp it.

Thanks to Buzzflash for the link.

Not Exactly from the Left: "Military Recruiters Are Professional Liars"

CK notes this piece by Fred Reed on Lew Rockwell, which isn't exactly a leftist progressive blog (although I might argue they are progressive in the broader sense of the word).

Hugo Chavez

Democracy NOW had a long and interesting interview with the Venezuelan leader today. If you get LinkTV or Free Speech TV channels, you may be able to watch it when they re-rerun today's show later or you can check the Web site for streaming audio/video.


Positively on Fire

That's what General JC Christian is. You must, must, must warm yourself in the flames.

Better Raise the Terror Alert, Karl and George

Because the polls are nasty.

From Friday's Times:

With Hurricane Katrina already costing the federal government tens of billions of dollars, more than 8 in 10 Americans are very or somewhat concerned that the $5 billion being spent each month on the war in Iraq is draining away money that could be used in the United States, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll.

The poll also shows that nearly half of Americans say that the war is distracting President Bush from addressing problems at home, though an equal number do not share that concern.

Complete Results: New York Times/CBS News Poll

How the Poll Was Conducted (September 17, 2005)
Support for the war in Iraq has fallen to an all-time low, according to the poll. Only 44 percent now say the United States made the right decision in taking military action against Iraq, the lowest rating since the question was first asked by this poll more than two years ago.
The findings underscore the difficulty President Bush faces as he calls on the public to show patience and resolve with the American effort in Iraq, particularly in the face of a persistent insurgency, punctuated this week by the killings of nearly 200 people in coordinated assaults in Baghdad.

When asked how long American troops should remain in Iraq, for example, 52 percent of people interviewed called for an immediate withdrawal, even if that means abandoning President Bush's goal of restoring stability to that country.

Only 42 percent said that troops should remain for as long as it takes to accomplish that mission, 12 percentage points lower than slightly over a year ago, when the question was first asked.
The nationwide telephone poll was conducted Sept. 9 through 13, with 1,167 adults, and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points.

Nearly two-thirds of people surveyed said the war was having an impact in their communities. Of those, 39 percent said it was a negative impact and 19 percent said it was a positive impact. Here especially, the poll showed a stark racial divide. Fifty-eight percent of blacks said the war was having a negative impact, compared to only 36 percent of whites.

Judy Judy Judy

Anyone keeping up with the (lack of) trials and tribulations related to poor, poor, poor Judith Miller? Who's she doing this for?

Since I Don't Put Bumper Stickers on My Vehicle

I have to put them on my blog instead. To get yours, click it.

Fellow Greenies

Thanks to Reader CK, this posted at Vermont Commons about the first convention of the Second Vermont Republic (the basic idea being to leave Tom DeLay's little slice of America).

Mark your calendars for October 28th. Don't forget to get your Filibuster Latte at Capitol Grounds before you arrive at the statehouse. I'll be the exceptionally tall chestnut-haired natural blonde woman reading the book on nuclear rocketry while we wait to get underway.

VP "Mr. Heart" Dick Cheney Chose to Divert Power Crews from Working on Hospitals to Get Them Back Online to Instead Work on Oil/Gas Pipeline


This was a link from Dan Froomkin's column that you posted on your site, but it needs special emphasis!!! As you can see, Cheney intervened and directed utility crews to restore power for an oil/gasoline pipeline at the expense of medical facilities throughout Mississippi. He gave this order while he was still in on vacation in either Wyoming or Maryland, negotiating on his new $2.7 million summer home. You know, fuck the poor and the sick! Even so Cheney still did not return to the White House for several more days. (Now we know WHY the doctor in Mississippi told him to go fuck himself, don't we.) It's not that Cheney has heart trouble, per se, the man doesn't have a heart -- period. (And to get perfectly snarky about it, it's just too bad that Cheney didn't have a heart attack while he was in Mississippi for his scripted photo-op. That would have been poetic justice.) While the focus, thanks to Kanye West, is on the president as it should rightfully be, we cannot let dear, sweet Dickie off the hook on this administration's racist policies.

Bush: I Care About Black People - Those Like Condi Rice and Clarence Thomas Anyway

Frank Rich is.. well, quite rich today:

The worst storm in our history proved perfect for exposing this president because in one big blast it illuminated all his failings: the rampant cronyism, the empty sloganeering of "compassionate conservatism," the lack of concern for the "underprivileged" his mother condescended to at the Astrodome, the reckless lack of planning for all government operations except tax cuts, the use of spin and photo-ops to camouflage failure and to substitute for action.

In the chaos unleashed by Katrina, these plot strands coalesced into a single tragic epic played out in real time on television. The narrative is just too powerful to be undone now by the administration's desperate recycling of its greatest hits: a return Sunshine Boys tour by the surrogate empathizers Clinton and Bush I, another round of prayers at the Washington National Cathedral, another ludicrously overhyped prime-time address flecked with speechwriters' "poetry" and framed by a picturesque backdrop. Reruns never eclipse a riveting new show.

Nor can the president's acceptance of "responsibility" for the disaster dislodge what came before. Mr. Bush didn't cough up his modified-limited mea culpa until he'd seen his whole administration flash before his eyes. His admission that some of the buck may stop with him (about a dime's worth, in Truman dollars) came two weeks after the levees burst and five years after he promised to usher in a new post-Clinton "culture of responsibility." It came only after the plan to heap all the blame on the indeed blameworthy local Democrats failed to lift Mr. Bush's own record-low poll numbers. It came only after America's highest-rated TV news anchor, Brian Williams, started talking about Katrina the way Walter Cronkite once did about Vietnam.

Taking responsibility, as opposed to paying lip service to doing so, is not in this administration's gene pool. It was particularly shameful that Laura Bush was sent among the storm's dispossessed to try to scapegoat the news media for her husband's ineptitude. When she complained of seeing "a lot of the same footage over and over that isn't necessarily representative of what really happened," the first lady sounded just like Donald Rumsfeld shirking responsibility for the looting of Baghdad. The defense secretary, too, griped about seeing the same picture "over and over" on television (a looter with a vase) to hide the reality that the Pentagon had no plan to secure Iraq, a catastrophic failure being paid for in Iraqi and American blood to this day.
This White House doesn't hate all pictures, of course. It loves those by Karl Rove's Imagineers, from the spectacularly lighted Statue of Liberty backdrop of Mr. Bush's first 9/11 anniversary speech to his "Top Gun" stunt to Thursday's laughably stagy stride across the lawn to his lectern in Jackson Square. (Message: I am a leader, not that vacationing slacker who first surveyed the hurricane damage from my presidential jet.)

The most odious image-mongering, however, has been Mr. Bush's repeated deployment of African-Americans as dress extras to advertise his "compassion." In 2000, the Republican convention filled the stage with break dancers and gospel singers, trying to dispel the memory of Mr. Bush's craven appearance at Bob Jones University when it forbade interracial dating. (The few blacks in the convention hall itself were positioned near celebrities so they'd show up in TV shots.) In 2004, the Bush-Cheney campaign Web site had a page titled "Compassion" devoted mainly to photos of the president with black people, Colin Powell included.

Some of these poses are re-enacted in the "Hurricane Relief" photo gallery currently on display on the White House Web site. But this time the old magic isn't working. The "compassion" photos are outweighed by the cinéma vérité of poor people screaming for their lives. The government effort to keep body recovery efforts in New Orleans as invisible as the coffins from Iraq was abandoned when challenged in court by CNN.

FEMA: If You Need Help, Good Luck, But If You're a Bush Crony or a Scam Artist, Let's Write You a Check"

Posted by Cookie Jill at Skippy International:

the handling of aid to victims of hurricane katrina is only the latest in a series of missteps and fraud that has plagued this tax-funded government agency. the sun-sentinel took a look at 20 recent disasters and found mismanagement and misallocation abound. - sun sentinel
hundreds of millions paid to people untouched by disasters
`free money' went to thousands after wildfires
after tornado, a rush to claim cash
agency poured funds into detroit after storms
disasters examined and a whistleblower at fema has stepped forward, too, saying that he (and other career employees) have been warning about the agency for years.

"fema's biggest problem is that too few people in the agency are trained to help in emergencies," he wrote. "we have good soldiers but crummy generals."for the rest of the 1990s, fema improved, bosner said. but since 2001 the agency has again become demoralized and experienced disaster experts have left. - cnn

and then there is sheer incompetence.

and this administrations true desire to kill the entire program

Women as Livestock?

Not only did the woman head of a federal program for women's health have to be quickly replaced by a male. But it was not just any male.

A male vet.

So theWoman Who Headed the US Govt's Women's Health Initiative...

had to be quickly replaced by a male. And not just any male.

A male vet.

"From Blame Game to Numbers Game"

James Wolcott presents something we've touched upon here in comments and discussed elsewhere as well: if the number of dead in NOLA turns out to be more than 3,000, Bush has problems because of the emphasis with which we've played the 3,000 dead on 9/11 again and again and again. If anyone notes that the flu and aspirin overdoses and pneumonia account for far more deaths each year, the hypocrit right immediately declares you card-carrying al Qaeda.

ABC's John Stossel, Proving Not Every Prostitute is Under 25

Buzzflash points us to this at Chicago Media Watch about Dear John.

Not That a Missing Jeff Gannon is a Bad Thing...

From DC Media Girl:

Why is "Jeff Gannon’s" blog’s homepage blank? Where has he gone? Am I the last person on this earth to notice this?
Perhaps he's in DC nursing Karl Rove back to health?

Or he's involved in a black ops mission in East New Orleans?

Or he's taken a (this time, vertical rather than horizontal) position with the Bush Administration?

Bush Katrina Excuse #327

From the Times of London:

“BUSH’S brain” was missing when flood waters swamped New Orleans. Karl Rove, the White House aide who goes by that unofficial title, was suffering from painful kidney stones and was briefly hospitalised in the middle of the biggest crisis so far of President George W Bush’s second term.

Once his condition improved it was Rove who urged the president to open his chequebook for the stricken city, against the advice of White House economists, and spend $200 billion (£111 billion) to rebuild it “higher and better”, as Bush went on to promise.

Although many Republicans are horrified by the cost, Rove is determined to revive Bush’s dormant image as a compassionate conservative, the theme of his first presidential campaign in 2000, and will be overseeing the reconstruction effort.

Bill Kristol, editor of the neo-conservative Weekly Standard, said Rove’s absence had made a significant difference after the hurricane hit. “He was out of commission for 24-36 hours and he’s indispensable. It’s a thin White House and it’s not a good thing that the government could become paralysed for a day,” Kristol said.

Bush's Popularity Plunges After Thursday Speech

Think Progress:

This just in from Rasmussen Reports:
    Thirty-five percent (35%) of Americans now say that President Bush has done a good or excellent job responding to Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. That’s down from 39% before his speech from New Orleans.

    The latest Rasmussen Reports survey shows that 41% give the President poor marks for handling the crisis, that’s up from 37% before the speech.
A disappointing debut for Compassionate Conservatism v2.0.
If anyone here is surprised by this, I have a lovely parcel of land in the 9th Ward of East New Orleans I'd be happy to sell you.

Oh, and yes, I'm a tall, willowy, natural blonde with an incredible sense of humor which is only surpassed by my talent in nuclear rocketry and macrame.

Right to Choice: the Fight Over Control of One's Body

Amanda of Pandagon - now doesn't that sound, as Trump would say, "classy?" - has many good citations and passionate words about the above-ref'd topic.


No, not Ann Coulter for the Supreme Court. [smirk]

I mean for Top Dog Blogs for the next week.

Healthy Skepticism

Start adding up the number of people the media tells us is already having a wonderful new life somewhere else after Katrina hit Southern poverty and you might notice a LOT of people aren't accounted for.

Methinks we're hearing this to take the heat off el jefe con plastically-enhanced cojones.

But I think it would be gravely mistaken to think ANY of this crisis is over. In many ways, it hasn't even started yet although Mr Bush not only handled it badly to start, he's guaranteeing he'll make an incredible expensive mess of it.

CNN Just Announced...

I mean, like it was part of their rock-hard reportorial deduction, that the Bush White House was going to now make us much, much safer in light of Katrina.

My first question to that is, "Exactly what drugs are you taking that can make you even conceive this could be true?" Is this what Zoloft and Paxil do? I've never taken either so I'm wondering if they happen to have properties that make you a good Bushie?

No Republican with three contiguously operational brain cells believes this kind of happy horseshit today. And no, as a reminder, I am NOT a Democrat. Or a Libertarian.

I'm just realistic. [wan smile]