Monday, June 30, 2003

The Deaniacs Have Done Gone Crazy

Howard Dean is poised to take in nearly $7,000,000.00 dollars in the 2nd Quarter, which ends tonight. Most of it came from small grass-roots contributors. Hopefully this will end all that "long-shot" talk and really get the ball rolling.
The Happy Days Are Here Again . . .

"As Mr. Bush moves from fund-raiser to fund-raiser, building the mother of all campaign stockpiles, states from coast to coast are reaching depths of budget desperation unseen since the Great Depression. The disconnect here is becoming surreal. On Thursday the National Governors Association let it be known that the fiscal crisis that has crippled one state after another is worsening, not getting better.

Taxes have been raised. Services have been cut. And the rainy day funds accumulated in the 1990's have been consumed. If help does not materialize soon — in the form of assistance from the federal government or a sharp turnaround in the economy — some states will fall into a fiscal abyss."

From Herbert at the NY Times

Are U.S. journalists truly spineless?

Magic 8 Ball says "It is Certain"

"Justin Webb, a Washington correspondent for the British Broadcasting Corporation, recently posed this question to his audience: "Are American journalists simply spineless? Do they toe the line because they love the President? Or because their employers do?"

Webb raised the question after hearing Vice President Dick Cheney deliver the following statement in reference to the war in Iraq: "You did well - you have my thanks." This praise was not directed to our troops or members of the president's Cabinet; it was lavished upon members of the American Radio and Television Correspondents Association at their annual dinner."

From David Hunter, KNOX NEWS

Saturday, June 28, 2003

And Now, The Rest of the Story

Remember the Iraqi scientist with the parts for an uranium enrichment centrifuge buried in his backyard? Something else was buried, namely the story of the scientist's efforts since May 2002 to find someone who would listen:

"It turns out that Obeidi was trying to give up the goods almost from the moment US troops stormed into Baghdad. But our operation was so poorly run that we ended up making the guy into some sort of friggin' nuclear Diogenes, practically wandering the streets trying to find one competent person to turn himself in to. "

Go read the rest of this amazingly f'ed up story at J. M. Marshall's Talking Points Memo. See also this CNN story.
Lawmaker Suggests Burying Islamic Militants in Pig Blood

BOSTON - State Senator Guy W. Glodis has angered Muslims and a civil rights group over a flier he sent to fellow senators that says terrorist attacks could be deterred if convicted Muslim extremists were buried with pig entrails. The flier, which Glodis's 39 colleagues received Wednesday, said an execution of Muslim extremists in the Philippines was ordered by General John Joseph 'Black Jack' Pershing before World War I, in which the terrorists were shot with bullets dipped in pigs' blood, then buried with 'pigs' blood, entrails, etc.' According to the flier, contact with the blood and entrails of pigs 'instantly barred' Muslims from paradise, dooming them to hell. It said news of the burial deterred other terrorist attacks for 'the next forty-two years.' 'Maybe it is time for this segment of history to repeat itself, maybe in Iraq,' the flier concluded.

I've got a better idea. We could have a TV show where offenders are forced to undergo a public humiliation which violates religious and social beliefs. Wait . . . Bill O'Reilly already invented that.

Friday, June 27, 2003

Finishing Out the Week With An Oldy But Goody

If you haven't seen it yet, check out this video of Presidental Mom Babs Bush drunkenly kicking her book writing dog, Millie, during a television interview. You might want to close your office door before you watch this.
Howard Dean Getting Gored

". . . (T)he pundit corps has a Standard Story whenever Dem hopefuls do Meet the Press. They say how brilliant Russert was—and they lament the Dem’s gruesome performance. Since Sunday, Dean has been battered for his performance. But there’s nothing new about this, of course. When Candidate Gore did Meet the Press on July 16, 2000, Russert made a string of errors—and Gore was hammered for a grisly outing. “Liberal” pundit Margaret Carlson raced to express the Standard Outlook. “Russert chopped [Gore] up in little pieces,” she colorfully said. “It looked like he was a candidate who was bolted together by the people at the robot factory.” But so it goes when your “liberal” pundits express their Conventional Wisdom."

From the Daily Howler.


THE PRESIDENT: Please be seated. I would say "good morning," but I cannot, for today comes on the heals of one of the darkest days in the entire history of our great Christian nation. Yesterday evening, heroic spring chicken and pillar of inclusiveness Senator Strom Thurmond was brutally murdered by a deranged and sickening United States Supreme Court ruling.

. . .

As I mentioned in my speech at his 100th birthday party, Senator Thurmond was a soft-spoken champion of individual rights, like the right to string up your Nigra neighbor if'n he so much as spits a watermelon seed across the street from your wife. He bravely resisted the second invasion of the south by the Union Army – or as sissies call it, the "Civil Rights Movement." Indeed, Senator Thurmond believed every white, heterosexual Christian soldier has a right to happiness – and if happiness includes not having to imagine what sordid, dog-like rutting goes on behind the closed doors of anus-worshipping Broadway man-starlets, then so be it.


Thursday, June 26, 2003

The War Profiteers Card Deck

Includes photos and fun facts about all your favorite Warmongering Dirtbags! Check it out!!!
Is that President Timothy Hutton?

Funny what you'll find if you follow the link banner at the top of this page. This airbrushed beauty can be hanging on your wall for the measly sum of $389.00. Also good for keeping varmints out of the chicken coop, or as an expectorant. If it was painted on velvet, I might actually get one.

Michael "Savage" Weiner Helps You Put the Lead Back in the Pencil

Being an angry, raving hatemonkey can decrease sexual performance and desire dramatically, and may even cause impotence. This can lead to more anger, more hate, as you try to "compensate" for your less than adequate man muscle.

Michael Savage knows. Being a hard-on doesn't mean you can have a hard-on. Sure, there's Viagra. But man, them boner pills is expensive! Especially when all your money is going to Free Republic donations, Left Behind books, and those nasty legal fees from fighting Ann Coulter's No Contact order.
Now, Michael "Savage" Weiner is proud to introduce Little Patriot Pills, the Herbal Viagra Alternative. Made with 100% American vitamins and herbs, not that Turd-World crap. These pills will have your "Little Patriot" standing tall and saluting, engorged with red, white, and blue vigor!

Don't be limp like a Democrat wimp. Buy your Little Patriot Pills today! Only $9.11 per bottle.

Wednesday, June 25, 2003

Mysterious Cat Mutilations Baffle Authorities

June 25, 2003 | SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- If the person who has killed and mutilated 11 cats in the city's Avenues neighborhood is trying to send a message, authorities have no idea what it is.

Eight cats were found last summer, with holes cut out of their sides, or the cat's entire front or back missing. Some were decapitated, others gutted. Three more have been killed since April.

"Paging Dr. Frist. Dr. Bill Frist, please see the uniformed officer at the intake desk."

I'm guessing he listens to Rush . . .

I Got Your WMD Right Here

While U.S. troops were detailed to guard Iraqi oil assets, ignored nuclear facilities were looted. Like Dick Cheney during Vietnam, we "had other priorities". Greenpeace seems to be accomplishing what the invasion failed to do - securing potential weapons of mass destruction. Greenpeace scientists have discovered numerous looted radioactive items, including an "automobile sized" cannister of uranium yellowcake. With the help of locals, on June 24, 2003 the Greenpeace folks delivered the cannister to U.S. authorities posted at a nearby Iraqi nuclear facility. Here's how they describe the scene:

Some folks might think nothing works in Baghdad, and sometimes that's true. But when the local community know that you're going to take away a huge lump of radioactivity from outside their front door, you'd be amazed what can happen.

This morning we had welders. We had lorry drivers. We even managed to magic up a fork-lift truck. We sealed up that cannister and its filthy contents, put it on the truck, and we drove straight through the gates of the Tuwaitha nuclear complex.

Right now, I'm standing at the first military checkpoint, and when they clapped eyes on our convoy of vehicles with yellow flags and "Greenpeace" spattered across them, a huge cannister on a flatbed truck with radiation symbols across it, and a large number of press (ha ha ha), the first thing the US Marine said was not "of course we'll take it back it's our responsibility," it was a shout to his comrades: "there's a whole bunch of motherfuckers heading straight for us." Got that right, mate.

These guys got big brass ones that clank.

Tuesday, June 24, 2003

FU Iraq

US picks wrong name for planned Iraqi armed forces

US authorities in Iraq have been forced to change the name of the planned Iraqi armed forces, after learning that the original title they came up with created an unfortunate acronym in Arabic. The planned force was originally entitled the New Iraqi Corps, whose initials in Arabic produce a colorful synonym for fornication. "Therefore we had to come up with another word," an official said. The new force is to be known as the New Iraqi Army.

From the Bangkok Post, via Dsduryea at Salon Table Talk

See? The Republicans aren't so bad . . .

Ruler Implores Political Candidates not to Engage in Ritual Murder

"'[King Mswati III of Swaziland] sternly warned prospective candidates not to murder innocent people in order to harvest their body parts to make a 'muti' to bring good fortune. 'During election times, we tend to lose our grandmothers, grandfathers and young children. They just disappear. But I want to warn you all that you should not resort to ritual murder,' Mswati said. Addressing more than 15 000 people at Ludzidzini Royal Village, 20km east of Mbabane, the king emphasised: 'Don't do that, because you might get caught and then you will not achieve your dream of going to Parliament.' ... Before the last parliamentary poll in 1998, the number of corpses with missing body parts discovered in rural or peri-urban areas increased from the usual three or four a year to more than a dozen. ... Mswati wants the first Parliament under a new constitutional dispensation to be elected without homicide, and is urging candidates to stick to conventional means of campaigning.' "

In a related story, leaders implored Trent Lott to stop the ritual sacrifice of swamp rats for his toupees

Monday, June 23, 2003

Chris Matthews Slags the Clintons on Charlie Rose

By now, its old news how Chris Matthews was invited on the Charlie Rose Show to dump his special brand of horseshit all over Bill and Hillary Clinton. For those who missed it, it went something like this:

ROSE: Chris, tell me what you think of the (Hillary Clinton) book.

MATTHEWS: Well, I think the book is evidence of why the police always want to interview the suspects as quickly as possible.

ROSE: Oh no you didn't!

MATTHEWS: You don't want to leave them a lot of time to rehearse their answers and in this case, you're dealing with the Menendez Brothers of American politics, Bill and Hillary Clinton . . . (rimshot)

ROSE: Oh, snap!!

MATTHEWS: . . . and although each is in separate cells, politically speaking, they do communicate, obviously.

ROSE: Snarfle!

Matthews later revealed that he hasn't even read the book. (For dramatic purposes, the responses of Charlie Rose have been paraphrased).

Now, a short quiz.

Bill Clinton is to Chris Matthews as a Lipizaner Stallion is to:

1. A Road Apple
2. A Deer Tick
3. Intestinal Polyps
4. A Smegma Sandwich

How I Became a Radical

I still remember the day it happened.

It was December 16, 1998. A cold, gray afternoon in northern Indiana. Patches of snow clung to the fields along Highway 31. I drove north on the two-lane road, toward our extended family party. Every year we got together for a combination reunion and holiday gift exchange. Assorted aunts, cousins, and children of unknown origin would be there.

I fiddled with the radio, looking for a station with decent reception and tolerable content. The local NPR channel was airing a live broadcast of the House impeachment vote. For me, the Lewinsky scandal was just another political slime-job. Fodder for the next election, but hardly worth impeachment.

As I heard the articles of impeachment being passed, I felt a bizarre disassociation. What the hell was going on here? To all appearances, the electoral mandate was being usurped by a handful of rogue legislators. Democracy was being undermined. Yet no one seemed to notice or care. People were hanging lights and having parties like it was any other Christmas.

I was baffled. In an attack on our highest elected official, prosecutorial discretion and sovereign immunity had been abandoned. Fairness and proportionality were out the window. It seemed so brazen and insane - a hollow, cynical power play. Why weren’t people taking to the streets, calling their congressmen, demanding a stop to this?

In my bewilderment, I became literally lost, missing my exit.

I arrived late to the party. The children had already unwrapped their presents. Parents were munching on the last of the buffet food. I tried to talk about my thoughts on the impeachment, but I was met with mumbles and glazed stares. Even my uncle, the Rush Limbaugh spouting reactionary, didn’t have a comment.

I was 35 years old, and for the first time I felt an overwhelming political and social disconnection from my country. What I considered commonsense was seen as radical, even unthinkable. I’d somehow slipped through the looking glass.

In a Chaotic Afghanistan, U.S. Reaches Out to the Taliban
Pacific News Service, Jun 17, 2003

Editor's Note: A growing guerilla movement against U.S. troops in Afghanistan has the United States scrambling to find a political way to keep the country together -- even, it seems, if that means meeting with the Taliban.

KARACHI, Pakistan--U.S. and Pakistani intelligence officials have reportedly met with Taliban leaders in an effort to devise a political solution to an escalating guerrilla war in Afghanistan.

According to a Pakistani jihadi leader who played a role in setting up the communication, a recent meeting took place between representatives of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation and Taliban leaders at the Pakistan Air Force base of Samungli, near Quetta. "

Okay, who were those evil-doers we were going to "smoke out"? Maybe Dubya meant he was gonna smoke out the Taliban the same way the Bush Twins "smoked out" Ashton Kutcher's party.

Friday, June 20, 2003

Spokesman for Gephardt Says Candidate Poll "Rigged"

WASHINGTON, June 20 — Some activists smell something fishy about next week’s Web-based “primary” to test the early strength of Democratic presidential contenders. While a number of the candidates are urging their supporters to vote in the event, some strategists see it as skewed toward Howard Dean, the former Vermont governor who shares the group’s antiwar views. “It appears to be rigged,” said Erik Smith, a spokesman for Rep. Dick Gephardt’s campaign.

Translation: Gephardt doesn't think he's got a chance with the Moveon crowd, so he's sent his boys out to slag on their "primary". One more reason for me to not like Mr. G.

I Just Pulled The Trigger

"...'The men have been traumatised by their experiences. Cpl Richardson-said: 'At night time you think about all the people you killed. It just never gets off your head, none of this stuff does. There's no chance to forget it, we're still here, we've been here so long. Most people leave after combat but we haven't.'

Sgt Meadows said men under his command had been seeking help for severe depression: 'They've already seen psychiatrists and the chain of command has got letters back saying 'these men need to be taken out of this situation'. But nothing's happened.' Cpl Richardson added: 'Some soldiers don't even f****** sleep at night. They sit up all f****** night long doing s*** to keep themselves busy - to keep their minds off this f****** stuff. It's the only way they can handle it. It's not so far from being crazy but it's their way of coping. There's one guy trying to build a little pool out the back, pointless stuff but it keeps him busy.'

Sgt Meadows said: 'For me, it's like snap-shot photos. Like pictures of maggots on tongues, babies with their heads on the ground, men with their heads halfway off and their eyes wide open and mouths wide open. I see it every day, every single day. The smells and the torsos burning, the entire route up to Baghdad, from 20 March to 7 April, nothing but burned bodies.' "

. . .

Even though no Iraqis were involved, and there is no proof Saddam was behind it, the attack on the World Trade Center provides Cpl Richardson and many others with the justification for invading Iraq. "There's a picture of the World Trade Center hanging up by my bed and I keep one in my Kevlar [flak jacket]. Every time I feel sorry for these people I look at that. I think, 'They hit us at home and, now, it's our turn.' I don't want to say payback but, you know, it's pretty much payback."

Meanwhile AWOL Bush struts around in his little military outfit on the deck of the Abraham Lincoln, crowing about victory. It doesn't get much more fucking sick than this. And, best of all, its being done in our name.

What happens when our soldiers come to grips with the lies behind this hellish obscenity? Will they forgive themselves? Will they forgive us? Should they? Something to think about while filling up the SUV with super premium.

Bush Administration Knew Iraqi WMD Proof Was Forged

"(...)The question arises again because of a bitter dispute, in part between the CIA and the White House, about how President Bush came to make a representation about an Iraqi nuclear program known in the intelligence community to be based on forged documents.

In his January State of the Union address, Mr. Bush spoke of an advanced Iraqi nuclear-weapons program in the '90s, and added, 'The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa.'

If true, that would have been the first solid indication of a current Iraqi nuclear-weapons program. But, apparently, it wasn't true. The New York Times reported 11 months earlier that the CIA, at the behest of Vice President Dick Cheney, had sent to Niger a knowledgeable retired ambassador (whose name was withheld) to investigate reports that Iraq was trying to buy uranium there.

The diplomat brought back word that the government of Niger denied any such dealings with Iraq, and the documents on which the allegation was based were patent forgeries. How, under the circumstances, the president could give credence to the uranium canard in a speech almost a year later is hard to imagine.
National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice said it hadn't been realized in the White House that the report wasn't credible until after the president had spoken. That suggests that the CIA kept the White House ignorant - which CIA officials deny.(...) "

Wednesday, June 18, 2003

GOP Reports Record Second-Quarter Profits

"WASHINGTON, DC--At a stockholders meeting Monday, the Republican Party announced record profits for the second quarter of 2003, exceeding analysts' expectations by more than 20 cents per share."

From "The Onion"

Cock Puppets

No, not members of the Bush Administration. This is a book of. . . well . . . paper adornments for the male member. Choices include plants, animals, and vehicles. It even comes with suggested dialogue for the "play" between partners. Here's directions for "The Steam Engine":

The Call: "Chuff chuff chuff chuff chuff chuff chuff chuff, Whoooooooooooo! Got to make it! Got to make it!"

The Reply: "Please stand well clear of the tracks, the 11.25 express is coming through!"

The Play: Swing forearms vertically to simulate pistons. Move toward your partner in a straight line while making loud, rhythmic steam emission noises. Blow whistle before moving off again.

Okay, it sounds goofy, but more fun than spending your night cataloging Bush Administration atrocities.
When will House Republicans call for Bush's Impeachment

It has now become clear that President Bush lied to the American people in order to promote a war. That war continues and has already led to the death of thousands of Iraqi civilians, hundreds of U.S. soldiers and countless Iraqi soldiers. In truth, Bush’s lies are more than just lies. They are high crimes and the President should now be subject to impeachment.


Tuesday, June 17, 2003

Sounds like someone's considering gender reassignment surgery.

"All men are failed women at birth," Gary Busey tells Esquire. "In the womb, men and women are the same shape -- then a man gets the external genitalia and it makes the course a little harder, a little more severe, and a little more disgusting."

Monday, June 16, 2003

The Latest from Paul Krugman

Last Thursday a House subcommittee met to finalize next year's homeland security appropriation. The ranking Democrat announced that he would introduce an amendment adding roughly $1 billion for areas like port security and border security that, according to just about every expert, have been severely neglected since Sept. 11. He proposed to pay for the additions by slightly scaling back tax cuts for people making more than $1 million per year.

The subcommittee's chairman promptly closed the meeting to the public, citing national security — though no classified material was under discussion. And the bill that emerged from the closed meeting did not contain the extra funding.

. . .

Yesterday The Washington Post printed an interview with Rand Beers, a top White House counterterrorism adviser who resigned in March. "They're making us less secure, not more secure," he said of the Bush administration. "As an insider, I saw the things that weren't being done." Among the problem areas he cited were homeland security, where he says the administration has "only a rhetorical policy"; failure to press Saudi Arabia (the home of most of the Sept. 11 terrorists) to take action; and, of course, the way we allowed Afghanistan to relapse into chaos.

Donald Rumsfeld Sued by Iraqi Shepherd for $200 Million

"An Iraqi shepherd is seeking 200 million dollars in damages from the US military for the deaths of 17 members of his family as well as 200 sheeps in a missile strike... 'The trial will be Iraq's first against US troops because we believe they used excessive force against the Iraqi people who cooperated with the United States to topple Saddam Hussein's regime,' Abud Sarhan's lawyer told AFP. Lawyer Rabah al-Alwani was approached by Sarhan, 71, to file a suit against US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and General Tommy Franks, commander of US forces in Iraq, after the shepherd claimed a US missile landed on his tent on April 4."

Does he or doesn't he?

Lots of buzz on Welsey Clark as a possible presidential candidate this weekend. Clark could be a good candidate, but whats with his coquettish non-commital approach to the nomination? How about some enthusiasm on RUNNING for president. I want a candidate who will take the lead, not a blushing debutante waiting to be asked to the dance.
George Bush knows a good fish-out-of-water story . . .

'When George got on the board at Silver Screen in 1983, we didn't expect a whole lot,' says a formerly high-ranking Disney production executive who wished to remain anonymous. 'But it's funny how the squeaky wheel gets the grease.' ... 'He said he had two kinds of things he always liked to see,' asserts a junior White House aide. 'One was the fish-out-of-water story -- the nice guy, maybe not too bright, who gets stuck in unfamiliar circumstances. You don't have to look too far to figure out where that comes from. The other was the story where the uptight yuppie guy learns to relax with the help of a funny sidekick -- often a sidekick of color. Sister Act had that, and so did Down and Out in Beverly Hills. [Bush] just went nuts for that formula.'"

Tuesday, June 10, 2003

Suspected "Monkeypox" case turns out to be plain old zits
Drunken businessman asks homosexual bartender about "Gay Initiation"

Prefacing his questions with, "I'm not gay or anything, but . . .", inebriated local businessman Jay Hondecker quizzed batender Harold Sims about, "how does a guy become gay?" "Is it like other gay guys come to you and offer to let you join, or, do you have to go find one and ask?", Hondecker inquired. Frustrated with the bartender's equivical answers, Hondecker pressed further about secret symbols of the gay fraternity. "I know when I became a Mason, we had certain code words and even a special handshake", he explained. Upset that Mr. Sims was not more forthcoming with specific details of homosexual interaction, Hondecker left Sims a 10% tip.
Latest Iraq News

President Bush acknowleges he was wrong about Iraqi weapons of mass distruction, offers Saddam Hussein a "Do over".

Wednesday, June 04, 2003

Mission Accomplished?

Apparently, the battle continues . . .

"A force of more than 1,500 US troops, backed by tanks and armoured vehicles, is to take control of two towns near Baghdad that are thought to be sheltering Iraqi fighters still loyal to Saddam Hussein.

In the next 10 days, battle-hardened troops of the US army's 3rd Infantry Division will be sent into Falluja and Habaniya, west of Baghdad. The troops, who led the invasion of Iraq and the capture of Baghdad, will be backed up by 88 Abrams tanks and 44 Bradley fighting vehicles.

They will saturate the area with checkpoints and conduct search operations, targeting Ba'ath party supporters and other militias from the towns."...

You'd think T-ball Bush would remember the advice of another simple, straight talking baseball guy: "It ain't over til its over".

Tuesday, June 03, 2003

Liar, Liar

Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction.

Dick Cheney
August 26, 2002

Right now, Iraq is expanding and improving facilities that were used for the production of biological weapons.

George W. Bush
September 12, 2002

If he declares he has none, then we will know that Saddam Hussein is once again misleading the world.

Ari Fleischer
December 2, 2002

We know for a fact that there are weapons there.

Ari Fleischer
January 9, 2003

Our intelligence officials estimate that Saddam Hussein had the materials to produce as much as 500 tons of sarin, mustard and VX nerve agent.

George W. Bush
January 28, 2003

We know that Saddam Hussein is determined to keep his weapons of mass destruction, is determined to make more.

Colin Powell
February 5, 2003

We have sources that tell us that Saddam Hussein recently authorized Iraqi field commanders to use chemical weapons -- the very weapons the dictator tells us he does not have.

George Bush
February 8, 2003

So has the strategic decision been made to disarm Iraq of its weapons of mass destruction by the leadership in Baghdad? I think our judgment has to be clearly not.

Colin Powell
March 8, 2003

Intelligence gathered by this and other governments leaves no doubt that the Iraq regime continues to possess and conceal some of the most lethal weapons ever devised.

George Bush
March 17, 2003

Well, there is no question that we have evidence and information that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction, biological and chemical particularly . . . all this will be made clear in the course of the operation, for whatever duration it takes.

Ari Fleisher
March 21, 2003

There is no doubt that the regime of Saddam Hussein possesses weapons of mass destruction. As this operation continues, those weapons will be identified, found, along with the people who have produced them and who guard them.

Gen. Tommy Franks
March 22, 2003

I have no doubt we're going to find big stores of weapons of mass destruction.

Defense Policy Board member Kenneth Adelman
March 23, 2003

One of our top objectives is to find and destroy the WMD. There are a number of sites.

Pentagon Spokeswoman Victoria Clark
March 22, 2003

We know where they are. They are in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad.

Donald Rumsfeld
March 30, 2003

From Billmon, referenced by "The Fool" in Eschaton comments

Monday, June 02, 2003

V.P. Cheney's Company Settles Deceptive Accounting Claims

Halliburton Co. said Friday it has agreed to pay $6 million to settle 20 shareholder lawsuits that accused it of using deceptive accounting practices while Vice President Dick Cheney led the company...

The investors alleged that Halliburton overstated revenue from 1999 through 2001 by $445 million, which pumped up the company's share price and cost investors millions when the stock declined last year.

Halliburton said it would not admit wrongdoing. The proposed settlement requires the release of all present and former Halliburton officers and directors named in the lawsuits, the company said...

The Dangers of Paperless Voting

A number of states are developing paperless touchscreen voting systems. The problem is that the programming is easy to alter, and the results are almost impossible to audit after the election. Curiously, a key Republican has a large stake in the company developing the machines. The linked story describes the strange events surrounding the first use of the paperless touchscreen machines in the 2002 Georgia election.
FCC eases media ownership rules

Republican-led commission passes measure with 3-2 vote (Coincidentally the ratio of Democrats to Republicans on the board.)
Critics say the eased restrictions would likely lead to a wave of mergers landing a few giant media companies in control of even more of what the public sees, hears and reads.

The decision was a victory for FCC Chairman Michael Powell (son of Colin Powell), who has faced growing criticism from diverse interests opposed to his move toward deregulation. “Our actions will advance our goals of diversity and localism,” Powell said.

Yes, because nothing promotes media diversity and localism like centralized ownership by a large conglomerate. Welcome to the time of the (Big) Lie.

Bush shines in the time of the lie

Lying has traditionally been seen as an inevitable part of politics. A recent study by political scientists in Britain said, "Politics should be regarded as less like an exercise in producing truthful statements and more like a poker game" in which deception is understood.

This cynical view appears to be implicitly endorsed by the current administration, which has so inundated us with lies that most of them pass unnoticed. Unlike the lies about sex that are the legacy of our previous president, the ones being perpetrated by Bush & Co. appear more consequential.

Referred by Maia Cowan in Salon Table Talk

So Happy Together . . .

Bush and Chirac at todays G8 summit.

Sunday, June 01, 2003

More Hannity Insanity

Atrios digs up this whopper from the Hannity & Colmes transcripts over at FOXNEWS (Their motto "We report, who cares what you think").

"(T)he setup is that Hannity and Kennedy are talking about drilling in ANWR and oil generally. Hannity starts reading from report which he claims is from the U.S. Geological Survey. From May 17, 2001:

HANNITY: In 1973, the United States imported 36 percent of its oil. Today, it's almost 60 percent that we're importing presently.

ANWR production, based on the lower numbers, anywhere between six billion -- six-trillion and 19-trillion barrels. ANWR production could percent of this entire refuge, for 30 years.

KENNEDY: Well, that's not true. That -- that's just a bogus...

HANNITY: U.S. Geo -- let me read you...

KENNEDY: That's a bogus...

HANNITY: The U.S. Geological Survey estimates oil...

KENNEDY: This is a misreport. I guarantee you, Sean. But let me tell you something else.

HANNITY: Excuse me. Well, no, no. No. Wait. Don't tell me. I'm reading from the U.S. Geological Survey estimates. It could be as much as 16-billion barrels of oil, which would be the largest supply of domestic oil ever discovered.

KENNEDY: Let me see that.

HANNITY: Right there.

KENNEDY: You're reading from an advertisement by the...

HANNITY: No, I am not.

KENNEDY: ... Energy Steward Alliance.

HANNITY: Let me -- let me put...

KENNEDY: Wait a minute. This is not honest, Sean.

HANNITY: Get my still ready from the Boston paper.

KENNEDY: Sean, this is not honest.

HANNITY: Get my -- get my still ready from the Boston paper.

KENNEDY: This is not honest to say that you're reading from the Geological Survey.

HANNITY: Excuse me. Excuse me. Can I -- let's -- it is -- let me quote...

KENNEDY: No. This isn't -- this is from an energy propaganda.

[Kennedy reaches over and takes it out of his hands]

HANNITY: Give me my paper!


HANNITY: Can I -- I'm going to put up from the Boston -- hang on a second. Hang on a second. From the -- from the Boston paper. Here it is. This is from "The Boston Herald," your neck of the woods, hardly a right- wing paper.

KENNEDY: "The Boston Herald"?

HANNITY: Environmental...

KENNEDY: Are you kidding me? That's as right wing as...

HANNITY: Well, you -- you want to discourage everyone. This is the U.S.

KENNEDY: Well, this is not the U.S. Geological Survey.

HANNITY: Wait. Excuse me. Wait a minute. I have the survey. I have the -- wait a minute.

KENNEDY: Sean...

HANNITY: I'm going to show you the survey."

Scientific studies indicate that 1 hour of FOXNEWS is equivalent to ingesting 5 grams of lead-based paint. Thank Atrios for mucking through the sewer of FOXNEWS transcripts to find this.


From Robert Parry at Consortium

“Matrix” and its sequel. “Matrix Reloaded,” offer a useful analogy for anyone trying to make sense of the chasm that has opened between what’s real and what Americans perceive is real. Like the science-fiction world of the two movies, a false reality is being pulled daily over people’s eyes, often through what they see and hear on their TV screens. Facts have lost value. Logic rarely applies. ...

...Indeed, the likes of MSNBC’s Chris Matthews used the occasion of Bush strutting about the carrier’s deck to praise Bush’s manliness in contrast to Democratic presidential candidates, including Sen. John Kerry who earned a Silver Star in Vietnam.

“Imagine Joe Lieberman in this costume, or even John Kerry,” Matthews said on MSNBC on May 1. “Nobody looks right in the role Bush has set for the presidency-commander-in-chief, medium height, medium build, looks good in a jet pilot’s costume or uniform, rather has a certain swagger, not too literary, certainly not too verbal, but a guy who speaks plainly and wins wars. I think that job definition is hard to match for the Dems.”

On the same show, when Matthews was asked about the Boston Globe article in 2000 describing gaps in Bush’s National Guard duty, Matthews swatted the question away without addressing its substance. “There’s any chance that the Boston Globe city room will ever endorse George Bush for president?” Matthews laughed. “Great reporting. But is it going to cost him a single state? They’re not going to get Massachusetts to start with.”

What the political odds in Massachusetts had to do with the factual issue of whether Bush ducked out on his military service, possibly going AWOL and getting protected by his father’s influence, was not explained. In the American Matrix after all, rational connections aren’t necessary. Like facts, logic is routinely overwhelmed by image, tone and ‘tude.