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February 28, 2006

Is It A Civil War Yet?

1,300 people killed during the week of the shrine bombing.

Add 68 and counting from today just in Bagdhad.

UPDATE:

Well, Prime Minister Ibrahim Jafaari of the woefully embattled Iraqi government says that the 1,300 deaths are highly exaggerated, putting the number of dead at around 300. The U.S. military, which has never had reason to lie before, puts the number dead at around 209. I'd feel more comforted if the Bagdhad morgue which the numbers come from hasn't been pressured to shut up, but now it claims that 200 more bodies on top of the 1,300 has yet to be claimed.

Spyware Courtesy of the Minnesota GOP

So that's how they identify and keep tabs on potential voters. Yesterday I listened on NPR on the heartwarming tale of how Republican activists were able to convert a black Ohio woman who used to vote straight Democratic. They noticed how she puts her kids in private schools and how she is an evangelical, so they appealed to her anti-abortion and pro-voucher leanings. I wondered how they got such detailed info from such a random person. Now we know.

Why Do Our Soldiers Hate America?

Only 23 percent of our soldiers in Iraq wants to say as long as they needed. 72 percent say they want to pull out within a year, while 29 percent want to pull out immediately.

I guess what keeps them going is that an overwhelming majority of the soldiers have been brainwashed by demonstrable right-wing lies since 85 percent of the respondents believe that their mission in Iraq is to retaliate for Saddam's role in 9/11.

Well, I'm looking DIRECTLY at all howler monkeys on the right to accuse our soldiers of defeatism, of advocating a policy of "defeat and retreat", to accuse them of "cutting and running", and all their other bullshit they say to avoid the fact that their little experiment in geopolitical engineering has gone catastrophically wrong.

Popular War-time President

At long last is it time to disabuse us of that meme?

Not only does the CBS poll show the Bush approval rating of 34%, placing the Bushbots hopelessly out of the mainstream, but it also shows that 63 percent don't think Iraq is worth the cost, 62 percent think things are going badly in Iraq, and 53 percent of Americans do not think toppling Saddam Hussein is worth the cost, making them objectively pro-Saddam.

But the real kicker is that for the first time more Americans disapprove of the way the monkey president is handling the WARONTERRA (50%) than approve (43%). Yeah, I have no friggin idea either since they seem to be doing such a fan-fucking-tastic job at reducing terrorism. I think it's because of the Dubai port deal, of which 70 percent of Americans are NOT a fan of.

February 27, 2006

The Hoodlum Vote

Rita Cosby, host of MSNBC blather show "Live & Direct", formerly known for her voice that needs a lozenge, is now known for that white triangular costume she keeps in the back of her closet:

COSBY: Yes, you know what? I do feel they are the good guys.

I am offended I think that churches would turn over their rosters. I think there needs to be this clear separation of church and state. Look, this is what our country was founded on.

And I also like what the Democrats are doing. I mean talk about a wacky thing. They are going after the, quote, “hoodlum vote.� I mean, that I think is very racist. Clearly they are going after the African-American vote, and I think on both sides it's pretty offensive.

MATTHEWS: Back up a notch. Going after the hoodlum vote?

COSBY: Yes, they're going after the felons. They are going after the convicted felons. They are going after these rosters saying that some of these felons should be able to vote.

So what they are doing in turn in saying OK the conservatives are going after the churches, you know, we'll get those lined. We'll get those voted of the folks who have had a criminal record. You know, come on.

Oh yeah, the only way she can explain this away is if she admits she's too stupid and white to know that it's racist.

We Fight Them Over There So We Can Be Exposed Over Here

Americablog picks up the NYT article on how state governors, Democrats and Republicans alike, are complaining how the policy of deploying National Guardsmen overseas is leaving them undermanned and undersupplied back home:

Governors of both parties said Sunday that Bush administration policies were stripping the National Guard of equipment and personnel needed to respond to hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, forest fires and other emergencies.

Tens of thousands of National Guard members have been sent to Iraq, along with much of the equipment needed to deal with natural disasters and terrorist threats in the United States, the governors said here at the winter meeting of the National Governors Association.

So we have an army stretched to the breaking point, basic training becoming transmogrified into a touchy-feely day camp, and now the states lack the personnel and equipment to protect themselves from potential crises like Hurricane Katrina.

Congratulations Mr. President, you've hit another trifecta.

Ser-PRIZE! Ser-PRIZE!

You know how the Bushies gallantly agreed to let the Dubai port company delay the deal until the mandatory 45-day review is completed? Well, not so fast:

“The company said that during the renewed scrutiny, or until May 1, a London-based executive who is a British citizen would have authority over DP World’s U.S. operations. It pledged that Dubai executives would not control or influence company business in the U.S., but said it was entitled to all profits during the period.�

They also said if the review results in the denial of the deal they would sue, and the review is going to kept secret anyway and kept from the eyes of Congress. So for the trillionth time, is there ANYTHING these jackals won't lie about?

February 26, 2006

It's Time To Shut Down Guantanamo Bay

This is from the must-read February 3rd piece in the National Journal

Some of the men Rumsfeld described -- the terrorists, the trainers, the financiers, and the battlefield captures -- are indeed at Guantanamo. But National Journal's detailed review of government files on 132 prisoners who have asked the courts for help, and a thorough reading of heavily censored transcripts from the Combatant Status Review Tribunals conducted in Guantanamo for 314 prisoners, didn't turn up very many of them. Most of the "enemy combatants" held at Guantanamo -- for four years now -- are simply not the worst of the worst of the terrorist world.

Many of them are not accused of hostilities against the United States or its allies. Most, when captured, were innocent of any terrorist activity, were Taliban foot soldiers at worst, and were often far less than that. And some, perhaps many, are guilty only of being foreigners in Afghanistan or Pakistan at the wrong time. And much of the evidence -- even the classified evidence -- gathered by the Defense Department against these men is flimsy, second-, third-, fourth- or 12th-hand. It's based largely on admissions by the detainees themselves or on coerced, or worse, interrogations of their fellow inmates, some of whom have been proved to be liars.

The most telling conclusion of the piece is that fewer than 20 percent of the prisoners in Guantanamo have ever been Al-Quaeda members. The most infuriating is that at least 8 prisoners in Guantanamo have been cleared of any association with Al-Qaeda or of any ill intent against any Americans, yet are still held indefinitely in that pit.

This is a major chink in the larger failures of the Bush Administration in handling the Waronterra. According to Newsweek reporter/analyst Michael Hirsh Al-Quaeda really was a perigrinous organization that could only function centrally in the newly-created extremist Islamist state in Afghanistan. No other country could tolerate its presence. It was also fractious with its only "A team" being Al-Zawahiri's group, the Egyptian Islamic Jihad with Mohammed Atta the lead foot soldier/psychopath. Al-Zawahiri wanted Egypt to be the main target, but Bin Laden made America the target, for ideological reasons to be sure, but also for functional reasons. Recalling the glory days when jihadis united together to fight, and later defeat, the Soviet infidels in Afghanistan during the eighties, he gambled on the idea that an unfavorable American military response towards the group would be offset by the galvanizing and unifying force such a response would be for militant Islamists everywhere.

At first, Bin Laden's dices came up as snake-eyes. Virtually nobody, not the liberals at home or the Islamic states abroad opposed Bush's invasion of Afghanistan. [Full disclosure, the invasion made me sick when it happened because I hated the fact that innocent people will be bombarded and invaded because a bunch of terrorists lived among them. I still hate the idea today, now because it's clear that the Afghan war is marked by astonishing incompetence and the existence of Guantanamo Bay-Kabul or Bagram Prison]

But Bush abused the new realities to exercise his desires to be a warrior king who answers to no one. First was the use of the military base in Guantanamo Bay to let the terrorists (and the unfortunate soldiers who were defending against an invasion, and those unfortunate to be at the wrong place at the wrong time) to rot or be tortured. That is clearly not a feature of a Jeffersonian democracy that purports to follow the code of justice, and many of our allies let that be known in no quiet manner. For those not our allies, it served as a rallying point justifying the image of the U.S. as an out of control agressor out to get Muslims. With the disclosures of the National Journal articles, a random American would be at a loss to explain how their country has NOT abandoned it's commitment to universal human justice.

Iraq is going to be the Waterloo not for this administration, but for the rest of the country as well, for how many decades no one knows. It has spawned a Palestinian Authority made up of terrorists, a Lebanese Parliament with a large percentage of Hezbollah partisans who undoubtedly are involved in the country approving the transfer of arms to the self-same terrorist group. The Bushies have overseen the election of the extremist Ahmednenijad in Iran and the country's brazen attempt to develop nuclear weapons, and even in their pet project in Eye-Rack has to contend with a government made up of Islamists who like to see our soldiers killed. Clearly the Iraq war was a mistake, purposeful on the part of the neocon fuckupswho dreamed it up in the first place, nearsighted on the part of those who actually believed (LOL!) that this is going to be a cakewalk, the Iraqis will be grateful, and that there won't be a power vacuum for opportunistic parties to exploit. Perhaps the selling of our ports to the Emirates will be the final straw, because if Bush doesn't have his credibility as the superhero ready to crush the terrorist boogieman, he has nothing.

But the existence of Guantanamo Bay is at best rank laziness on the part of the administration who don't want to deal with the machinery of justice. It is simply a giant middle finger to all that we stood for. If we are to regain a fraction of the prestige and our reputation in the rest of the world, that place, and others like it, must be shut down.

February 23, 2006

Darren Bernard - Poet Laureate

Is it just me, or are conservatives having too much fun playing down the significance of Dead-Eye Dick shooting a man in the face?

Boxer could grandstand

Kennedy would cry
It would be Alito all over
“Why did you lie?!�

A hearing for Durbin
A statement for Dayton
The awful conclusion:
“Cheney is Satan�

As much as Dems weep
It’s not like Dick tried
As much as libs sob
They can’t prove Dick lied
They cry, “What a scoundrel!
He pretends to have guts,�
But Dems are just jealous
That Cheney has nuts

Hah. . .huh? Perhaps Cheney hasn't lied himself, but his lackeys have been spinning all this time; first he wasn't drinking then he had a cocktail before shooting; Cheney didn't report the incident for hours because he wanted to make sure his friend was ok, even though he never went on the ambulance. And then there was the spin that the whole incident was Whittington's fault for sneaking up on Cheney like a rabid quail, then they had to backtrack when they relized how debased it was to blame the victim.

In any case, a vice-president involved in a shooting accident is a big deal no matter what the case may be. Make no mistake that if it had been Vice President Al Gore doing the shooting, the cons would never leave it alone for a second.