Saturday, July 31, 2004

Agenda for GOP Convention Aug. 30-Sept. 2, 2004

We all know the DNC Convention had an agenda for each day of the convention.

Well, the RNC will naturally counter, with its own agenda. Here is my prediction, let's see how I do in four and a half weeks.

August 30, 2004: Remembering 9/11 (Selectively) & Remembering Reagan

August 31, 2004: Tribute to the victims of 9/11 & Say Reagan was a Republican: A Look Back at Him.

September 1, 2004: Sturm & Drang: Stuff we blew Up in revenge for 9/11 and some Iraqis who are happy about it. Say, George Bush is a Republican JUST Like Reagan, did you know that? Now, watch this film about Reagan, narrated by George W. Bush.

September 2, 2004: George W. Bush, a Reagan Republican who blew up a lot of stuff in Remembrance of 9/11.

September 3, 2004, Convention over, but George Bush hits the stump and talks about how the GOP is a party that looks to the future!

Pot, Kettle & the Calico Cat

Attaturk is busy with the real world today, where he is known by his actual name and cannot talk about himself in the third person nor be a blogger by day, and fight crime by night.

However, before I go off to reality, I perused the infobahn as usual looking for stories that I can at least post about as if I found them all by myself.

Nobody reads Talking Points Memo right?

Good, then nobody has noticed that Josh Marshall has this about a missive from Barbara Comstock, former spokemodelperson for John Ashcroft:

His daughter told this story as if we could all relate to this "human" moment of mouth-to-mouth contact with a rodent. I think I can speak for most parents, that while we might lay down our lives for our children; we see no need to swap spit with vermin.


John Kerry may have been able to breath life into a hamster; and he may have been able to breath some hope (or is it help?) into the gerbil-loving delegates; but he's still a strange, Herman Munster-like figure to me.

Oh, sweetness and light. God forbid that a child tell a humorous anectdote about their parent. I love the use of "rodent" and "vermin" too.

But Comstock's purpose is to try to call Kerry, strange and weird.


-- Ashcroft "annoints" himself with oil when he takes a new job.
-- Ashcroft thinks that Calico Cats are the sign of the Devil!
-- Ashcroft is anxiously waitin' for the Rapture!
-- Ashcroft hangs out with "snake-handlers"!
-- Ashcroft wants a curtain hung over the Lady of Justice!
-- Ashcroft was more concerned about porn than terrorism!
-- Ashcroft not only wrote, but sings "Let the Eagle Soar"!

And yet to Comstock, John Kerry is strange? Does she claim an expertise on such matters now, because I didn't see it in the original post.

Friday, July 30, 2004


November 19, 1863

CM: President Lincoln shocks the assembled multitude at the dedication of a cemetery burying the heroes of Gettysburg with a speech of only a few minutes. Why so shockingly short and inappropriate? I'm Chris Matthews and on MSGAR (MicroSoft Grand Army of the Republic) and this is Hardminiball.

...theme music...

Well, the President spoke here at the dedication of the new cemetery here in Gettysburg this morning, some four months after the battle in which some 50,000 men died, both from the Blue States and the Red Grey States. Following a moving two plus hour speech by Edward Everett the President spoke to the gathered throng in a speech that lasted only a few minutes.

Tonight on Hardminiball we ask, was the President disrespectful of this assembly of heroes in not giving a more appropriate speech. Joining me tonight are our guests, Howard Fineman of Newsmonth, Joe Scarborough, former Congressman in the Confederate Congress and host of MSGAR's "Scarborough Plantation", and Ann Coulter, author of such books as "Abolitionists" and "Keep Your Hands off my Adams Apple AND my property".

First, though the speech wasn't long, we have broken it down into even smaller portions. Here is a part of President Lincoln's address, let's watch:


Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Ann, let's start with you, because you will simply yell over other people anyway and that is supposed to be my job, what did you think of that start?

Well, clearly this is an outrageous and shrill start for this most incompetent and treasonous tool of abolitionists and misogynists that comprise the Lincoln Administration, and all Yankee politics. First, what the hell does Fourscore and Seven mean anyway? Is that the number of people that Abraham Lincoln has raped in the Presidential Mansion?

Ann, what are you talking about, that is insane…thanks because that is what we expect from you. But what possible evidence do you have that these events have happened.

Chris, surely you have seen the stories in such reputable papers as the Washington Times? I mean there is much more to that paper than just writing articles about Revolutionary War locations. There are all sorts of stories told by me to people I will never divulge of wild mixed race sex-orgies taking place involving the President and his mulatto whore of a wife. Just look at the man, Chris, he is an incompetent backwoods buffoon drunken with power and his love for the darkies. Why, my hero, John C. Calhoun, would never have stood for such mixing as happens when Abraham Lincoln and his real-life master Frederick Douglas share the pleasures of White Virgins they steal from the beautiful farms of Virginia.


Okay, Okay, Ann. Look we all know that Frederick Douglas is a loose cannon that the Lincoln Administration cannot control and who spreads doctrines about the equality of the Negro. Howard Fineman, isn't it true that Frederick Douglas is a dangerous, radical, un-American man.


Well, Chris he is obviously an embarrassment of a man for the Lincoln Administration.


Don't you mean an embarrassing 3/5ths of a man Howard?


Yes, Chris, I'm sorry.


Joe, what are your thoughts?

Well, Chris as you know I don't really have thoughts, but I did get this letter from the Davis Administration in Richmond by sent by courier two weeks ago and they say this:

Quote, the dangerous monstrosity that is Abraham Lincoln is surely the most dangerous flip-flopper that ever lived within the wall's of the white peoples house. For example, first he is against emancipation and now he is for it; then he is against war and now he is for it; then he wanted Robert E. Lee to have command, and now he wants Meade or Grant. Why in the Mexican-American War, Lincoln had the audacity to say the war was a mistake against the sainted President Polk, and now he claims he is entitled to lead the nation to war. The flipping and flopping never ends. Unquote.

Clearly, Lincoln is a man without a moral compass, other than what the black liberal Republicans tell him to do.

Okay, Okay, I think we all agree that the opening was weak and will be quickly forgotten, but let's look at another portion:

It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us–that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion–that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain–that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom–and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.


Okay, clearly not a particularly strong finish, in a speech that was both brief and plainly not very well thought out or meaningful. Wouldn't you agree Howard?

Well Chris, I think that is certainly the way that the Administration is feeling tonight and I think you've hit it on the head that this speech will not scow the field so to speak

Lincoln is INSANE! Look at the lousy, illogical, and poorly thought out word structure in that paragraph. But also look at the ideas within it that show just how dangerous and insane that darkie-loving sex fiend Abraham Lincoln is. By the way, remember the 87 rapes of white virgins he has also engaged in and how he killed several men with his bare hands. But Freedom? What does that have to do with America Chris? America is all about kickin' ass and invading those dangerous men of the North in Canada. Government should only be for some people, the darkies, and yes, the women too should not vote. In fact, only southern white men have the capacity to actually govern this country.

Well, I have to agree with that.

So to summarize, we all agree that speech of President Lincoln was a colossal disappointment, as so much in his Administration is. OK, thanks for the three of you joining us. Coming up next on Hardminiball, Actor-Political Activist and Humanitarian, John Wilkes Booth will tell us about his new movie, "Two Minstrels go to White Castle" and his failed engagement to J-Lo, so stay tuned, you're watching Hardminiball.

Wesley Clark best Line

Roger Ailes (the good blogger, not the bad FoxNews Svengali) reminds us that Wesley Clark had a very good quote in a speech that was probably the best Clark ever gave:

Franklin Roosevelt said it best: "Repetition does not transform a lie into a truth."

And while I am at it, let me steal one more thing from Roger. Last night the punditry stated quoting GOP talking points. Included was the supposedly traitorous fact that Kerry didn't mention he was Lt. Governor under Michael Dukakis in his biographical video. Wow, what a tepid body blow -- what is that the equivalent of GOP "slugbug"? Lame, but as Ailes reminds us, Chimpy McFlightsuit has a pretty long (and this isn't complete) list of failures. A few lowlights that he will likely not mention:

Let's see how many of these career highlights make the Bush video:

Failed to appear for flight physical
Failed to appear for duty, Alabama National Guard (or, alternatively, read magazines in lieu of actual military service)
Failed sobriety test
Failed businessman (Arbusto)
Failed candidate (U.S. Congress)
Member of failed G.H.W. Bush reelection committee
Failed governor (education, environment, etc.)
Failed to win popular vote
Failed to win necessary electoral college votes
Failed to prevent terrorist attacks on America
Failed to tell the truth about war with Iraq
"Mission Failed"
Failed to find WMDs
Failed economy
Osama who?

Hope, um, Help, Lame Captions on the Way

So John Kerry gives the speech of his life, much to the consternation and delusional denial of those who are either suckin' on the GOP teat, or needing to try to grovel on their knees for money (but we are not mentioning Sully's name or anything).

The night in pictures:

MSNBC's Hackapalooza brigade hyperventilated that Al Sharpton was allowed to live after giving a speech on Wednesday. On Thursday Sharpton held up a sign that caused Chris Matthews to literally fall into a induced coma. Maybe Tawana wasn't right, but Chris Matthews in a coma...THAT sounds like justice. I was just gonna settle for one of Al's old medallions up Tweety's ass.

John Kerry complies, and does, in fact, Boot Bush.

Sisters, doin' it for themselves -- and remember our Dad resurrected a Hamster, while Bush resurrected Poindexter, Elliot Abrams, and Negroponte. I prefer the Hamster.

In reality, they are watching fireworks in the evening after leaving the convention, but soon Drudge will say its Kerry asking where the "fucking" balloons are.

Five weeks until the Republican Convention, where if there are pictures like this, Attaturk can really go to town.

Meanwhile, Ed Gillespie was criticizing Kerry for outsourcing for a wife.

I'm sorry about what John Kerry said last night Prince, we know it is not true...can you please implement operation "I'll save your ass through increased production" now?

Oh, and besides a foreign wife, Mr. Kerry has a "chin", you cannot trust a man with a strong chin. Do not trust the chin-endowed! Vote Republican, we are chinless wonders.

In case you were wondering why they are I-D-I-O-T-S

Sully calling Kerry an Arrogant Jerk, and Instacracker not liking a democrat giving a non-Republican speech.

Sully Watch frequently points out Sully's habit of projecting his problems upon that of others. Well, you cannot get more projected than this quote:

One thought sprang into my mind immediately: what an arrogant jerk.

Yes, almost as arrogant as thinking you deserve money for tripe, and badly written and edited tripe at that. Of course, there is nothing arrogant about declaring "Mission Accomplished" last May, by stuffing a flightsuit and having your sorry, chickenhawk ass flown out to an Aircraft Carrier ordered further out to see so you cannot see the skyline of an American city.

No sir, John Kerry is way more arrogant than that.

I'm not linking to them, they don't deserve it.

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Well, Nobody Gives a Rat's Ass

What a little anonymous blogbloy says, especially this little midling blog.

However, that was the best speech John Kerry has ever given, and at the best time possible.

A speech, that if all the votes are counted, could propel him to the White House.

Oh, and if anybody would volunteer to shove a balloon down Matty boy's piehole, that would be cool too.

Channelling Marie Antoinette

From KOS.

An campaign worker in the Bush Administration gave the modern version of the famous "let 'em eat cake" today. Unbelievable.

A campaign worker for President Bush said on Thursday American workers unhappy with low-quality jobs should find new ones -- or pop a Prozac to make themselves feel better.

"Why don't they get new jobs if they're unhappy -- or go on Prozac?" said Susan Sheybani, an assistant to Bush campaign spokesman Terry Holt.

The comment was apparently directed to a colleague who was transferring a phone call from a reporter asking about job quality, and who overheard the remark.

When told the Prozac comment had been overheard, Sheybani said: "Oh, I was just kidding."

Though Bush seems incredibly unable to fire anyone directly, it seems hard to believe that Ms. Sheybani will not soon be joining the ranks of the unemployed herself. But at least she can then put her remedies to the test.

Of course, Ms. Sheybani's advice would be quite sound for the country as a whole after three and a half years of Commander Codpiece. Unfortunately, she does not understand that among the 38 million people or so without health insurance, the unemployed make up a sizeable percentage.


Thank you Francis

Just over fifty years ago, four scientists, in a race against the preeminant Biochemist of the 20th Century, Linus Pauling, managed to one up the master and break the chemical code of life, DNA.

Young genius James Watson, Maurice Watkins, the criminally uncredited Rosalin Franklin and Francis Crick figured out the code and affected the study of genetics, biochemistry, evolution, and biology as a whole for all eternity. It was the "theory of relativity" for life science. In one fell swoop we know the secret of life, and how the tool of evolution.

Crick died last night in San Diego at 88.

Attaturk writes silly captions and performs his day-to-day job in relative anonymity. Francis Crick, even if you've never heard of him, left a large imprint upon the world.

Drudge, Over the Top Again. Why Bother Correcting?

Once again the "Closeted Fedora" has thrown out some crap to see what sticks. This time a blatant overstatement concerning Kerry filming recreations of his battles in Vietnam.

Here is a site that demonstrates just how ridiculous and overstated this typical canard of Drudge is.

The problem with Drudge is that as soon as you beat back his crap with an actual factual rendition of events, he's thrown out another two pieces of dung.

The point of Drudge seems to be throw out some shite, have some freeper, Instacracker or Satan's Intersection report it as "...Drudge is reporting that...", which is pretty much a way of saying...this may be full of crap, but we will throw it out there anyway, and repeat.

The scary thing is you know that some lazy bastards from the SCLM read the guy and repeat his happens way too often. Remember Alex Polier?

Boston Bloggers

Not a single one of the DNC blogger's in my opinion is covering the National Property Managers Convention as well as yours truly did [DON'T give me that..."but they are not there" excuse, that's old and tired...this is meta world for godsakes, I've metioned the shindig they are at plenty of times, but not one mention of the NPMC from those friggin' elitists].

But of those in Boston actually providing news from the matter, I'd have to say that Bill Scheer at Liberal Oasis is doing as well as anybody, as you see when you scroll down his blog. Although Bill has far too good a relationship with my pretend wife Janeane Garafolo.


Thanks to triple crown choker, but valuable Atrios Commenter, Smarty Jones, comes notice of this story from today's NY Times (perhaps you've heard of the paper?):

A classified Justice Department investigation has concluded that a former F.B.I. translator at the center of a growing controversy was dismissed in part because she accused the bureau of ineptitude, and it found that the F.B.I. did not aggressively investigate her claims of espionage against a co-worker.

The Justice Department's inspector general concluded that the allegations by the translator, Sibel Edmonds, "were at least a contributing factor in why the F.B.I. terminated her services," and the F.B.I. is considering disciplinary action against some employees as a result, Robert S. Mueller III, director of the bureau, said in a letter last week to lawmakers. A copy of the letter was obtained by The New York Times.

Ms. Edmonds worked as a contract linguist for the F.B.I. for about six months, translating material in Turkish, Persian and Azerbaijani. She was dismissed in 2002 after she complained repeatedly that bureau linguists had produced slipshod and incomplete translations of important terrorism intelligence before and after the Sept. 11 attacks. She also accused a fellow Turkish linguist in the bureau's Washington field office of blocking the translation of material involving acquaintances who had come under F.B.I. suspicion and said the bureau had allowed diplomatic sensitivities with other nations to impede the translation of important terrorism intelligence.

The Edmunds matter has been fairly underwraps except for other left-wing blogs and websites for months now. Where her allegations first came to light, the Justice Department re-classified a document that had been made public supporting Edmunds claims and then fought like the hell to make sure Edmunds couldn't pursue a whistleblower claim against them.

Edmunds claims had also been found credible by Iowa Republican Charles Grassley, Chair of the Committee which had looked into many matters, including some of Edmunds claims. Grassley is certainly a conservative, but has the admirable trait of not liking the taste of Kool-Aid.

The Justice Department has imposed an unusually broad veil of secrecy on the Edmonds case, declaring details of her case to be a matter of "state secrets." The department has blocked her from testifying in a lawsuit brought by families of Sept. 11 victims, it has retroactively classified briefings Congressional officials were given in 2002, and it has classified the inspector general's entire report on its investigation into her case. As a result, groups promoting government openness have accused the Justice Department of abusing the federal procedures in place for classifying sensitive material.

Mr. Mueller's letter, sent July 21 to leading members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, offered a rare glimpse inside the F.B.I.'s thinking on the case, and its content surprised some congressional officials.

Now, get a load of this Double-Speak from Mueller:

In his letter, Mr. Mueller said he was pleased that the office of the inspector general "had not concluded that the F.B.I. retaliated against Ms. Edmonds when it terminated her services on April 2, 2002." At the same time, he said, "I was concerned by the O.I.G.'s conclusion that Ms. Edmonds' allegations 'were at least a contributing factor in why the F.B.I. terminated her services.' "

Um, I was pleased that the FBI did not retaliate against Ms. Edmunds when we used her complaints as a reason for firing her. to explain for me Bob how that is NOT retaliation? I think I'll be waiting for some time on that one.

An official with knowledge of the report who spoke on condition of anonymity said investigators confirmed some of Ms. Edmonds's allegations about translation problems to be true, but could not corroborate others because of a lack of evidence. None of her accusations were disproved, the official said.

Ms. Edmonds said in an interview Wednesday that she had not been informed about any of the inspector general's findings and was planning a lawsuit to force the public release of the report.

She said was gratified to hear that the inspector general found that her allegations played a part in her dismissal, and she said public pressure was needed to correct what she considers continuing problems in the F.B.I.'s ability to translate terrorism intelligence.

"Here we are almost three years after Sept. 11, and these problems have not been corrected," she said. "This is one of the major problems the intelligence community is facing."

It is time for Ms. Edmunds' situation to be made more clear and the circumstances of this matter described to the American Public -- the Bush Administration's Bosses!

With Tom Friedman on Vacation...

Cat-fancier extraordinaire Kevin Drum let's us know that America's conservatives have bravely stepped in to fill the dearth "we haven't heard political insights from cabbies reaffirming our world view" that has existed ever since Friedman took a sabbatical (undoubtedly to collect such anonymous missives in book form).

Mickey Kaus wrote:

Passenger: "Fleet Center, please."

Boston cab driver (an immigrant): "You like John Kerry, eh?"

Passenger: "Well, I'm a Democrat but I don't really like Kerry that much."

Cab driver: "I hear that all day. All day. 'I don't like Kerry.' Why you pick him if you don't like him?"

Missing from that alleged transcript, Mickey asking "Where do the local mediterranean restaurants go for their lambs?" Mickey wants to make sure they are good and tender.

Meanwhile, self-proclaimed libertarian -- and well-known delusional nutjob Neal Boortz found himself another cabbie to advise him that the world is EXACTLY as Neal says:

Had a Boston taxi driver yesterday from Iraq. He's going back home to visit his parents in a few weeks. He was none-too-pleased with the Democrats. He believes that Democrats hate his country and want Saddam to be back in power. He was adamant that things are much better in Iraq than the media is saying ... and he's at a loss as to why all of these media types won't tell the truth.

Coming soon, Rush Limbaugh meet's a cab-driver that says "we Arabs love our sodomy, don't let somebody else tell you otherwise."

Sean Hannity meets Mustafa, a cabbie that thinks "Democrats are all communists and pinko wimps, not like decorated fighter pilot George W. Bush".

Ann Coulter meets "Abdul, a cabbie who goes on and on about how he wishes somebody would make him convert to the Jesus via the barrel of a gun."

How convenient for them. If I were Tommy-Boy, I'd take my Walrus-Mustache right over to my anonymous foreign-born attorney and sue them for violating my trademark.

On-Time Wednesday

Done right at 11 p.m. Eastern on the dot, the prime-time "hour of power" that is the 2004 Democratic Convention.

Dennis Kucinich reacts in glee as he thinks he spies an Oliphant. (Ed: You are such a goddamned geek)

Retired Joint Chief's Chairman John Shalikashvili shows off his killer Donald Rumsfeld impression.

A worker at the Bush/Cheney War Room in Boston takes time to do the sort of productive computer work most do -- actively searching for the porn. Apparently, Bush War Rooms are a growing business, given their proliferation, Baghdad, Khandihar, Kabul, Fallujah, Mosul, and opening soon in Damascus and Tehran.


Florida, the home of competent and fair voting, on occasion, casts its 89, er, 77, er, 105 votes, I'm sorry we forgot to write down the vote totals.

Too bad that "Hope is on the Way" line caught DNC folks off guard huh?

A Special Message to Chris Matthews, Britt Hume, and Judy Woodruff.

You cannot spell high class and quality without Billy Baldwin. Oh, and Bianca Jagger, also still alive. But where are the bloggers?

Well, Mickey Kaus was too preoccupied to attend last night.

Another Night of a an Excellent Convention Speech

Edwards managed to do what is so difficult in politics, give a very good speech, underlying the important themes of the party (including some real, live, proudly liberal rhetoric) yet not make it so good that Kerry cannot eclipse it. He is an extremely likeable man, as is the rest of his family. He also portrayed competence and gave just the right balance of promises and detail.

Dick Cheney has never given a speech anywhere close to it, and never will.

One last thing on Obama, The Daily Show, reminded me of Obama's being the descendant of goat herders. I do believe that Mickey Kaus will now be on board, hoping for a fix up.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

I just Posted about Cheney so...

Can a Halliburton post be far behind?

Holden, over at Atrios provided a link to this story and it pretty much sums up the whole smelly business of the joys of outsourcing and how Dicky-Poo's former company is one tax-payer ripoff scheme artists...or too incompetent to exist:

Halliburton Co. has lost $18.6 million of government property in Iraq, about a third of the items it was given to manage, including trucks, computers and office furniture, government auditors claim.

The auditors couldn't account for 6,975 of 20,531 items on the ledgers of Halliburton's KBR unit, according to a report by Stuart Bowen, auditor for the coalition provisional authority inspector general.

Halliburton is providing services to U.S. troops under a contract that has generated $3.2 billion in revenue so far


That DICK -- Not much of a Historian

The Witch King of Angmar Vice President of the United States, Dick Cheney has been tilting his head and mumbling out growly speeches for the re-appointment campaign of President Bush this week.

Yesterday, in California, perceiving the populace as being as stupid as he always does, Dick laid out the reason it is important to re-elect Commander Bunnypants.

"Terrorist attacks are not caused by the use of strength. They are invited by the perception of weakness," Cheney said at Camp Pendleton on the Southern California coast.

Yes, Dicky-poo, that philosophy has worked so fucking fantastic for the last 50 years for the Israelis and the Palestinians.

Dicky boy, there are all sorts of other examples from history that can be thrown out there too. Showing strength sure worked well for oh, Charles I; the Romanovs; Mussollini; the Pulahvis.

Oh sure, it certainly is not good to be seen as weak, but when your enemy finds out the limitations of your in Lebanon 1982, and Iraq today and now Sudan today, THAT IS WHEN YOU ARE REALLY, TRULY, POSITIVELY, SQUARELY, SUCCINCTLY, CHENEYED.

Meanwhile in other NON-Convention News; Hey, Iraq still really, really Fucked

At least 51 68 dead from a giant carbomb in Iraq. Kidnappings every day, deaths every day. Worst event in months, and the worst since Potemkin Sovereignty was allowed to "reign".

This occurred at a police recruiting location. Again, planned and executed.
Coming soon, the Arabic Emanuel Goldstein will be assigned blame.

Allawi is decidedly not the power in anywhere but a portion of Baghdad.

Though the press coverage may decrease because, amazingly, Wolfowitz's criticism of the press for not going out will operate in reverse, its too dangerous out there. Like the journalist, American Troops will, I'm sure as the election comes closer be put into defensive bunker locations to decrease casualties, while the outlaying area goes to shit.

It is OPERATION HOLD-ON at the White House being engaged, absolutely the worst course of action the Bush Administration could take to American interests, but the best he can do for his own reelection interests. Funny, how when those two have met in the past, the latter always seems to win.

It will be interesting after November 2nd, how Bush rules (if he doesn't suspend the election of course) after he is defeated and is a lame(r) duck. Without his shallow personal desire for power to hold on to, will he allow the best policy to be followed, or will he act like a petulent ten-year old and do something idiotic. Boy, I don't like those odds.

Pounding the Gavel...

Is not just a euphamism for Attaturk's sex life. Another convention day in pictures.

In a shocking moment, Governor Howard Dean pummelled Robert Novak and Tucker Carlson to a bloody pulp.

Meanwhile, David Brooks prepared to call this man a "credit to his race" and "quite eloquent for a black guy". Attaturk on the other hand, is prepared to call David Brooks incredibly insipid even for a New York Times Columnist.

After delivering an excellent speech, Teresa Heinz continues to piss off the GOP by being rich, liberal, and wearing one of Nancy's dresses.

Wow, Billy Baldwin's still alive. Not that I had been wondering.

GOP..."But we have Zell Miller speaking to us"...well whoop'die shit.

This is Zell Miller and his two dogs, "Rick" and "Santorum".

Iowa first lady Christie Vilsack walks out to address the convention, wonder where they put Iowa's delegation?

Meanwhile, in breaking news Dick Cheney surprisingly arrived in Boston.

Well, Let me be the 7,539,342nd to Say

Barack Obama is probably going to be running for President (and winning) someday. What a presence, what a story.

...although David "living putz" Brooks, just because a guy is african-american that doesn't mean you are should make a "Tiger Woods" reference. Stupid dumbass.

Yet even as we speak, there are those who are preparing to divide us, the spin masters and negative ad peddlers who embrace the politics of anything goes. Well, I say to them tonight, there's not a liberal America and a conservative America — there's the United States of America. There's not a black America and white America and Latino America and Asian America; there's the United States of America. The pundits like to slice-and-dice our country into Red States and Blue States; Red States for Republicans, Blue States for Democrats. But I've got news for them, too. We worship an awesome God in the Blue States, and we don't like federal agents poking around our libraries in the Red States. We coach Little League in the Blue States and have gay friends in the Red States. There are patriots who opposed the war in Iraq and patriots who supported it. We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the stars and stripes, all of us defending the United States of America.

Meanwhile, today Attaturk departs Reno and leaves all of his new Landlord buddies behind. Faretheewell slumlordin' dudes.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Does this look like Freedom?

While we are engrossed in the Democratic National Convention and the National Property Managers Convention, Lest we forget... there is a war, peacekeeping, situation continuing in Iraq. The International Coalition of Academics Against Occupation address several deeply depressing trends in Iraq. One of the most disturbing is the destruction of the intellectual culture of Iraq. Yeah, we have certainly brought freedom to Iraq, eh?

Even after the ‘transfer of authority’ the U.S. Government remains in de facto military occupation of Iraq. The idea that the escalation of violence can be put to an end by the ‘interim’ government, while 140,000 U.S troops remain in control of major Iraqi cities like Mosul and Baghdad, is far from the reality on the ground.

Overlooked by the U.S. Press is the escalating assassination of Iraqi academics, intellectuals, and lecturers. More than 250 college professors since April 30, 2003, according to the Iraqi Union of University Lecturers, have been the targets of assassination. Among the 250 professors assassinated to date include: Muhammad al-Rawi, President of Baghdad University (July 27, 2003); Dr. Abdul Latif al-Mayah a Professor of Political Science at Baghdad's Mustansiriya University (late January 2003); Dr. Nafa Aboud, a Professor of Arabic Literature at the University of Baghdad; Dr Sabri al-Bayati; a Geographer at the University of Baghdad; Dr. Falah al-Dulaimi, Assistant Dean of College at Mustansariya University; Dr. Hissam Sharif, Department of History of the University of Baghdad; and Professor Wajih Mahjoub of the College of Physical Education.

Why Stewart Rules the News

I know we all hate the cut and paste method, but I thought that this commentary was too perfect to pass up.

Note to Tom Brokaw: Why I get my hard news from Jon Stewart
by Ruth Lopez

Sunday morning, wanting to see some of the run-up to the Democratic convention, I turned on CNN. There was Judy Woodruff, talking to a Kerry spokesperson. In thanking him for the interview, for her closing line, she said, "Spoken like a true, loyal Kerry man." Did I hear that right, I thought? Because it sounded to me like a backhanded way to imply that he said what he said just because he works for Kerry? A sly way to discredit the speaker; slip in the line, close the segment.

Then, because the Republicans have a "rapid response war room" at the Dems' convention, Ms. Woodruff interviewed one of the ex-Enron lobbyists that now have jobs shilling for Cheney/Bush. I waited to see how she would close the interview with him. First, I had to listen to the same old tired list of Republican "talking point" lies: Kerry voted to raise taxes 350 times (lie), Kerry is a flip flopper (lie), Kerry is the most liberal senator (lie, but I wouldn't care if he was). On and on, and not once did Ms. Woodruff challenge or question the statements made. When he was done, she thanked him sweetly for his time, as if it had been a burden for him to have had to do all that heavy lifting for lil ol' her. Yuck. I turned to MSNBC. No better. They were all so excited to have a "rabid response team" throwing them treats that they were practically salivating on their mics.

Later in the day, while watching CSPAN, there was Ms. Woodruff again, along with a panel of other esteemed TV news professionals: Brokaw, Jennings, Rather. They were discussing the sad state of news reporting during the lead up to war. Yes, they admitted that they all reported the war build-up wrong. They didn't ask hard enough questions. They were cowed by an aggressive and hostile administration. They were afraid to buck the hyper patriotism in the lead-up to the war.

Then, I almost choked on my pretzel, Brokaw bemoaned the fact that so many young people think that The Daily Show is an acceptable way to get real news.

Note to Brokaw, Jennings, et al. You didn't just misreport the insane drive to start an unnecessary, pre-emptive war, you were part of the hyper patriotic, jingoistic drumbeat. And it isn't just that you didn't do enough to question it, it's that you didn't do anything. And you still aren't. Your pathetic CSPAN mea culpa, seen by less than 1% of the country, is even less impressive when you go right back to your studio and keep carrying water for the Bush Administration, ala Ms. Woodruff.

As for why young people think that The Daily Show is a good source of real news, ask yourself this: When the vice-president of the United States is caught, on TV, publicly lying about leading this country into a war where almost 1000 of our young people have needlessly died, and then later states, again on TV, that he never said what he said, why is it that the only "news" show to play the side by side tapes of him lying, and then denying what he said, is The Daily Show? Why wasn't that headline news on every news show? " Vice President denies saying what we have him on tape saying, soldiers dying every day because of it." That's news, but I have to watch Comedy Central to see it. What's wrong with this picture, Mr. Brokaw?

And it isn't just young people who are turning to Jon Stewart for news dressed up as comic relief. I'm old enough to remember another time when we had a VP like Cheney. Spiro Agnew, Nixon's VP, pleaded no contest to charges of tax fraud and resigned. Apparently, Agnew had illegal payments -- which he called legitimate political contributions (in unmarked envelopes containing as much as $20,000 at a time) -- delivered directly to his vice presidential office! Sound like anyone we know? Somewhere from Hell I'm sure Agnew is smiling up at Cheney.

Every one of the top news people sitting on that CSPAN panel should remember Agnew's disgrace; they're old enough, they were all around then. And then, like now, the news media toadied up to the Nixon Administration until the weight of evidence in Watergate became unavoidably massive.

Now it's gotten so bad that flacks like CNN's Kelli Arena can proclaim that Osama Bin Laden is a Kerry supporter and she still has a job. (Kelli, how often do you and Osama talk?)

What's it going to take this time, Mr. Brokaw? Because apparently you news guys have forgotten. Today, once again, you and the other infotainment anchors posing as news people dither and dawdle and pander to this corrupt administration and cry hot little tears of self-recrimination in the quiet corners of CSPAN and then trot right back to your "news" desks and do it all again.

One good hour of self-flagellation in the desert of CSPAN and you feel so refreshed!

Meanwhile this country is again taken for a ride, one that puts Nixon and Agnew to shame, and now, like then, more of our young people die every day for lies.

You know, Mr. Brokaw, you guys aren't kids any more. What are you afraid of? You've made your fortunes. Even if you got fired today, you'll never be out on the street starving. How about finding your courage, and speaking some cold, hard facts: This country was lied into war. The vice president is a war profiteer who is being investigated for taking bribes and doing illegal business with sanctioned countries. Try it. Walter Cronkite could give some advice on this. Bill Moyers is out there trying to do it, I bet he'd like some company. Try grabbing yourself by your manly parts and standing up for the truth.

I bet you'd find an audience then. Hell, I'd watch every day.

Ruth Lopez
Orlando, FL

Sometimes we all must live in Hell, but Heaven is just beneath us - George Huntley "Inside my Head", from the album Fun and Games

You can Talk up Boston all you Want

What with your bloggers and their DNC parties, their celebrity citings, their ability to use the restrooms at the site.

You haven't lived until you've done Karaoke with a bunch of drunken landlords and real estate agents, as shown below. It's like living a night with all the people you'll find at - only more felonious.

Fortunately, this morning I woke up alone, and with only a couple incriminating, compromising, photographs being used for blackmail.

I swear I have NEVER seen that airedale before.

Bad news for Bush?

While the democrats are focused on beating Bush apparently there are some modest areas of disagreement. You know earth shattering arguments such as their position on oppsoing the Iraqi war. That is, how much they should oppose the war.

A Globe poll of delegates -- mostly party activists who tend to be more liberal than mainstream Democrats -- indicated that 95 percent now believe the United States should never have gone to war in Iraq, a position somewhat at odds with the man preparing to claim the presidential nomination, John F. Kerry, who has said only that he would not have gone to war ''the way Bush did."

Most party leaders hope Kerry's convention speech can satisfy those who opposed the war from the start and avoid reopening divisions from the primaries, when former Vermont governor Howard Dean decried many of his rivals as ''Bush lite."

But they do not want Kerry to go as far as Dean in denouncing Bush's decision to go to war, but rather concentrate on issues like casualties and the cost of rebuilding Iraq without international support.

While it is important to have the dems focused against Bush it is also important to realize that on the issue of the Iraq war, Kerry is not as far removed from Bush as some of us might like him to be. But it is still a move in the right direction.

Another problem for Bush is that the 9-11 Report is a best seller:

The 9/11 Commission Report, released Thursday, is selling so briskly that its publisher announced a second printing Monday.

W.W. Norton, which published the $10 paperback in cooperation with the bipartisan federal panel that investigated the 2001 terrorist attacks, estimates it sold 350,000 copies through Sunday.

With bookstores from Portland, Ore., to Washington, D.C., out of stock, Norton says it's printing another 200,000 copies in addition to the 600,000-copy first printing.

I wonder if this means that people will start to put the pieces of the puzzle together and see Bush as dangerous as we all know that he truly is. Sorry Sully the silly, but Bush is a danger, the problem is that you know it too, don't you? You should.

Oh, am I supposed to "bend over" and be nice now?

So Sully endorsed Kerry, and said nice things to an extent about the Democrats.

Well, until this last line.

Remember when we were one as a nation? Do you really think that president Bush is capable of bringing any of us together again? Of course, some Democrats are responsible for exactly that polarization. But it's nevertheless a smart move to portray themselves as a unifying future compared to the divisive past.

Oh, yes, "some democrats are responsible"...not "contributed" or not "also responsible", just "responsible."

No, nobody like Sully ever called the opponents of the Iraqi "kick ass kickoff" appeasers; nor did he ever imply they were traitors, not just to their society but civilization. And God knows, by emphasizing things like Gay Marriage, and implying their opponents were un-american wussies, the Bush Administration certainly played no fucking part in dividing the country.

Remember the term "WEDGE ISSUE" Andy pants? Forgetting that you yourself have both pushed the wedge and been staked upon its leading edge by the beflightsuited manly man you so once adored, and still want to?

You right these craptastic missives and expect to be paid money, when there are hundreds of more eloquent bloggers doing it for free?


DNC Pictoral Bliss Blitz

Just because I'm not there (ed: Could you fucking whine any more you miserable bastard?) doesn't mean I cannot caption some of the events of the day in Boston and elsewhere.

"Obviously", Tucker Carlson opinined, "don't let the smiling faces fool you, nor the speech, nor the statements otherwise. The Clinton's still believe that Hillary will be elected President in 2004."

When did Patty LaBelle become "hot", and her hair "normal"?

Oh, let's just get it out of the way, future Drudge top of the page picture.

In the land of the just, President Al Gore accepts his parties nomination for his re-election, while George W. Bush accepts a job as the Vice-President of Marketing at Texas largest Car Dealership, RRRRRRRRRRR!

"Which of these two am I supposed to try to marry first?"

Al and Tipper Gore impersonate President Bush and Tony Blair

Everybody hesitated momentarily as Senator Mikulski went over to the pole to begin her dance routine.

Behold, the power of the Clenis.

Behold, the power of the...ok, let's not go too far here.

Another normal vacation day in Crawford, Texas for the President.

RUN FOR YOUR LIVES! Dick Cheney is being flirtatious. Eiyeeeeeeeee! Oh, sorry, it was just gas.

The Bush Administration classified a New Weapon of Mass Destruction yesterday.

That's right, two, count 'em two, falling off the bike jokes in one post.

LOL....Read this...

From "Red State Diaries" (wasn't that a Showtime show with a lot of soft-core porn years ago?) comes this post.

Right now, Attaturk is attempting to get ready for another heady day at the National Property Managers Convention here in Reno, but I hope to get some time soon to caption this mighty series of pictures on this site. I think I may be able to do something with them.

BTW, Attaturk got outed in Reno. Here is my picture.

Societal Double Standards

God forbid, the wife of a politician have opinions and be her own independent thinker and strong-willed.

Such a woman will be pilloried by interviews, implying that well...she's a BITCH.

Don't you women know your place? Our brave SCLM asserts.

Women can only be prominant if they are vacuous talking heads; your Judy Woodruffs, your Paula Zahns, your Laurie Dhues.

And it is not just the SCLM, the reason they push it is because too many Americans have residual resentment over the same issue. Women are allowed to be strong-willed and independent ONLY within the confines of the family residence -- and even then, ultimately she must back down to the "profound" wisdom of we men (and look at us, are we not demonstrably wise?)

On gender issues, we are a profoundly fucked up country on this issue and the media doesn't help.

Yes, the "Big Dog" was Great

Wonderful speech.

But I have to tell you that the speech that created real buzz here in Reno, was the address by Bob Teetleborough at the National Property Manager's Convention, "Using Exterminators for the purposes of Homeland Security and Obtaining Pornography". It was a very good speech, lots of good ideas. I'm sure that Tom DeLay knows all about it.

Iraq in Trouble; Economy Slumping Again; Virtually Every Policy a Failure; Democrats United; Convention Starts -- SAY, How 'bout that Hacking Murder?

Our brave SCLM, our nation's future and world events are soooooo boring, playing up the tragedy of the murder of a pregnant white woman -- NOW THAT'S NEWS.

Huzzah...we've got pablum for the masses...dead...white...and pregnant...YEE HAW!!!

Once again, the First Amendment and Corporate, Consolidated media are a dangerous and destructive brew.

Oh, and Iraq. How's that going?

A new wave of kidnappings has sent shockwaves through the diplomatic community in Baghdad, virtually shutting down most embassies and thwarting Prime Minister Ayad Allawi's efforts to drum up international support for his fledgling government...

Ah, never mind. That poor WHITE WOMAN WAS PREGNANT!

Monday, July 26, 2004

Remember We're Free

Sully the sullied is beggin' for dough. Poor, poor Sully, apparently that Moon Money just doesn't have the power it used to now that people are actually paying attention to who owns the Washington Times. That and the fact that, as a gay man, the good Reverend Nutjob would like to have people of his lifestyle catapaulted into the Sun.

Attaturk, on behalf of himself and DeDurkheim, would like to remind you that we provide you "on the spot" coverage like the National Property Managers Convention 2004, and "look George Bush took another dopey picture for us to caption". And we do this without ANY cost to you, other than an unremovable stain on your soul.

With that in mind, we'd like to remind you to give absolutely NOTHING to us in terms of capital or favors of any kind. All we ask for is the occasional intellectual dry hump known as "adding us to your BLOGROLL".

Thank you, and in the words of alternative universe, agnostic Lee Greenwood:

"If there is a Supreme Being, may he or she give an attaboy to the United States."

The Upbeat Convention

So the word on the street, um ok... the word from the NYT, WAPO, and NPR, is that the dems convention will be positive and upbeat. That the party of the Donkey (who picks these animal monikers anyway?) will present itself as an enlightened, optimistic, and encouraging polical party.

In an attempt to contrast itself and its presumptive presidential candidate as possessing an optimisitic message for America. (I was sick of the way the news media for the past several months used that lanaguage and danced around calling John Kerry the dem nominee for president-- but who the hell are we kidding? The guy had it in the bag many moons ago)

I am not sure what I think of this approach. First, Chimpy McFlightsuit who will do anything to win (don't believe me, check out his first "election") and say anything negative to dismantle his competition. See the worthless attacks on Kerry for:

1. having an opinion and is willing to compromise for the sake of making sound policy(become flip floppin')
2. talks about policy with others
(intellectual egghead -- um, whatever that means)
3. came from money and is out of touch
(I mean, really... does Bush really want to go there...his own background or remember when dad Bush was amazed at that fancy star trek scanner thing...)
4. purple heart questions
(again, do you really want to go there? Considering chimpy skipped out on national guard service and that whole lies about WMD thing)
5. he would do harm to the military
(on what basis do we make that attack? see #4)

I know I am forgetting a few baseless attacks but you get the idea, they are all negative. It seems to me that one of the most damaging aspects for Bush is that the economy has gone down hill, 9-11, more underemployed people, and pointless war all occured under his from-the-ranch-vacationing "supervision."

Second, what interests me here is whether an optimisitic, sunny side of the street perspective can win the electoral college vote against a negative-the-other-guy-sucks perspective? Shouldn't the dems lay out all the problems that chimpy and trusty (not to mention Rummy, Wolfy, Condi, and other Bush prayer meeting regulars have created) have caused this country? Shouldn't they hammer home how reckless, dangerous, and destructive the Bush people have been these past four years.

Think of it, the Bushies have only had four years and look how drastically the manly man of virtue has screwed things up. Shouldn't the convention make all these problems clear as day for American voters?


So I am, in Reno, Nevada at the National Property Manager's Conference enjoying a complimentary orange juice and danish at the back of the conference room. I decide "well let's see if they have wireless", and voila! they do.

I was all about to tell you about the current speaker's tips on "Crisis Management: What to do when your tenant demands their damage deposit back", when I came across this item in the New York Daily News online:

Rush Limbaugh and Peggy Noonan had people chattering at the Four Seasons the other night. The conservative cohorts, both divorced, gave each other a big hug and, according to one spy, "seemed like they were a date." Noonan says, "I'm flattered, but it's not true." Limbaugh's rep corroborates, "They're old friends"...

Granted, she loves dolphins, and he is comprised of, and spews blubber out of his blowhole daily. These two facts could lead one to believe they'd be a natural couple. However, c'mon Peggy, even your regular dose of "c-cell" lovin' has to be better than rollin' toward the side Rush is beached upon at night?

Reno -- Lovely Motel 6

Being invited to Reno to cover such an exciting convention does have its perks. In addition to getting a credential, I also received a three-night reservation at one of Reno's Motel 6's. I've discovered, that not only do they leave a light on for you, they give you all of the excitement of hearing a woman and a man in the room next to you get it on in the most vocal of ways.

Although why the man wanted to know who her Daddy was, over, and over, and over again, I have no idea. In any case, they did seem to really like each other for fifteen minutes or so.

The agenda for tomorrow's activities seems pretty exciting, however, I must say. I will have a chance to become a Certified Professional Property Manager (CPPM). Wah-Hoo!.

I sure hope Kos, Josh Marshall, and Atrios are having as much fun as I am. I also hope the convention location has wireless hot spots, because apparently the Property Manager's Convention is lacking a free-speech cage for tenants shouting things such as:

"No sub-lease, No Justice!"

"Hey, Hey, ho, ho, this Leaky faucets got to go!"

"Two, four, six, eight, my rent this month is gonna be Late!"

I'll miss it.

Richard Mellon Scaife PLANT Story of the Day

Assuming Americans are idiots for several years. Naturally, it is headline story on water-carrying "Fedora Boy".

Ah, but what are the actual facts:

Colin McNickle, the editorial page editor of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, questioned her on exactly what she meant by the term "un-American," according to a tape of the encounter recorded by WTAE Channel 4 Action News.

Heinz Kerry said "I didn't say that" several times to McNickle. She then turned to confer with Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell and others. When she faced McNickle again a short time later, he continued to question her, and she replied, "You said something I didn't say. Now shove it."

And what sort of things does the "Pittsburgh Tribune Review" write from its Editorial Page?

Check for yourself, this guy is no more than a literate Freeper, Glenn Reynolds with some grammar skills.

Hey, who owns the Pittsburgh Tribune Review?

Why it's RICHARD MELLON SCAIFE, billionaire Right-Wing Nutjob and owner and investor of a wide-variety of Right-Wing publications.

Who'd imagine such a Freeper Paper being big enough assholes to attempt to get Teresa Heinz-Kerry to say something marginally mean and then overplay it for all its worth?

Ah, the things that Fedora Boy and The Corner of Insanity & Stupidity will likely never tell you.


First, he resisted the creation of the 9/11 Commission, then he supported it;

Second, he resisted having Condi testify, until he reversed himself;

Third, he resisted testifying before the 9/11 Commission, and then he did so (with "Direct Current Dick" making sure he didn't "Cheney" himself);

Fourth, after saying he would deliberate the 9/11 Commissions' recommendations, now he is about to use Executive Orders to put some of them into place. Of course, this will occur during the DNC Convention to keep his name in the papers. I guess operation "defrost Osama" will be put off until after Labor Day.

Boy, I tell you, I imagine this will be the talk of the Property Managers here in Reno.

Rising Hegemon's Convention 2004

Being anonymous blogboys means that either DeDurkheim or I could pretend we are covering the Democratic National Convention in Boston.

...stay tuned for our exclusive interview, "excuse me officer, what do you mean get back in the cage?..."

But, of course, as the New York Times will tell you we were not invited to the convention...Apparently, it was a combination of not being asked and not asking. I prefer to salve my ego by pretending it was the latter.

But just because we are not at the Democratic National Convention does not mean that we will not be covering a convention.

This week, exclusive to Rising Hegemon, we will be giving regular reports from the National Property Managers Convention in Reno, Nevada (the place for those who think Las Vegas is too high class). Stay tuned...

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Whither the Working Class Hero?

The Los Angeles Times again demonstrates that they are out of touch with most Americans by loudly proclaiming that the working class has no "true champion." Even if we accept such a notion. There are many people, activities, and experiences that not only are colored by a working class sensibility but have progressive possibilities. Do I need to list them?

Al Franken. While using an air of righteously angry psuedo-intellectual swagger, Franken says that the emperor has no clothes on and neither do his friends. Franken says what needs to be said while making a caustic joke that would warm the heart of many in the working class who remember the game of arm punching and flinching. There are many readers who are not part of an "insular left" as Crazy eyed Ann Coulter have called Franken readers.

Heavy Metal. Say what you will, but heavy metal (and I would not include all hair "metal" bands here) speaks to disenfrachisement, alienation, and isolation that most of the working class experience on a daily basis. Now, this is not to say that there are not problems with heavy metal such as the view of women and embracing of violence but look at who listens to heavy metal and their backgrounds. These people want change and they want to make it, they simply lack direction and meaningful goals.

Michael Moore. Moore uses an everyman appeal while taking on corporate giants, mean spirited money grubbing politicians, and the fanatics of the right wing who lie, cheat, and use their influence to control the world and reshape it to best meet their interests. He is beloved back home in Flint, Michigan and lets face it millions of Americans embraced Roger and Me, The Big One, and now especially Farenheit 9-11. Forget the pathetic partisan lie that Moore is rejected by the everyday people he represents, the success of F9-11 demonstrates that many people are interested in listening to what progressives have to say.

Wrestling, Nascar, Horse racing, county fairs...I can go on and on... just because many of us in the online communities want to reject such activities as corny or silly, there are possibilities for community building. In fact, if you are looking for a perfect intellectual and activist working class champion, you are going to come up empty handed. However, if you are willing to look at individuals and activities warts and all, you can find working class people and their champions. If you can look without jaundiced eyes, that is.

July 18, 2004
How the Left Lost Its Heart
Now, the working class has no true champion
By Thomas Frank

(Thomas Frank is editor of the Baffler magazine and author of "What's the Matter With Kansas?" This article was adapted from that book by arrangement with Metropolitan Books, an imprint of Henry Holt)

WASHINGTON - That our politics have been shifting rightward for more than 30 years is a generally acknowledged fact of American life. That this movement has largely been brought about by working-class voters whose lives have been materially worsened by the conservative policies they have supported is less commented upon.

And yet the trend is apparent, from the "hard hats" of the 1960s to the "Reagan Democrats" of the 1980s to today's mad-as-hell "red states." You can see the paradox firsthand on nearly any Main Street in Middle America, where "going out of business" signs stand side by side with placards supporting George W. Bush.

More AWOL stuff -- Will the Press Wake Up?

Since Republicans continue to stupidly push the Kerry purple heart story (wah!, three purple hearts, a bronze star, and a silver star...but he's a blue-blood Democrat...wah!)

But we all know that Kerry's service record pales, absolutely pales, in comparison to our MMOV (manly man of virtue) who managed to skate through a four year term of service in the National Guard, specifically to avoid going to Vietnam, and managed to cram a whole 2-years worth of actual effort into it (well that's better than he's done as President, he's managed to turn the period of September 11, 2001 to September 20, 2001 into a four year term).

According to Paul Lukasiak, the records -- and others prove that Bush continues to lie about his record and the evidence is becoming overwhelming that Bush was definitely AWOL and more. Further, not all the records are out there, and Chimpy still has yet to release them all as he promised six months ago. There is smoke and the fire is getting closer on this one.

So I encourage the Republicans to keep beating up on Kerry about a purple heart, given what is coming down the pike. Keep it in the news boys.

Maureen Dowd needs a New Picture

It is true, but today she puts up a good column -- how about that?

Maybe it's because I've been instructed to pack a respirator escape hood along with party dresses for the Boston convention. Maybe it's because our newspaper has assigned a terrorism reporter to cover a political convention. Maybe it's because George Bush is relaxing at his ranch down there (again) while Osama is planning a big attack up here (again). Maybe it's because there are just as many American soldiers dying in Iraq post-transfer, more Muslims more mad at us over fake W.M.D. intelligence and depravity at Abu Ghraib, and more terrorists in more diffuse networks hating us more.

Maybe it's because the F.B.I. is still learning how to Google and the C.I.A. has an acting head who spends most of his time acting defensive over his agency's failure to get anything right. Maybe it's because so many of those federal twits who missed the 10 chances to stop the 9/11 hijackers, who blew off our Paul Reveres - Richard Clarke, Coleen Rowley and the Phoenix memo author - still run things. Call me crazy, Mr. President, but I don't feel any safer.

The nation's mesmerizing new best seller, the 9/11 commission report, lays bare how naked we still are against an attack, and how vulnerable we are because of the time and money the fuzzy-headed Bush belligerents wasted going after the wrong target.

Even scarier, the commissioners expect Congress, which they denounced as "dysfunctional" on intelligence oversight, to get busy fixing things just as lawmakers are flying home for vacation.

The report offers vivid details on our worst fears. Instead of focusing on immediately hitting back at Osama, Bush officials indulged their idiotic idée fixe on Saddam and ignored the memo from their counter-terrorism experts dismissing any connection between the religious fanatic bin Laden and the secular Hussein.

BTW, Attaturk's real job is intruding this Sunday morning, so today, mostly cut and paste jobs from me.

Saturday, July 24, 2004

The Least Surprising Awards since this years Oscars

I think we all knew that Return of the King would clean up at the Academy Awards.

Well, the Main Organization Revealing Obvious Numbskulls (MORON) has named this years winners of the World Stupidity Awards and our Feckless leader cleaned up, like Adam Clymer, big time.

The November elections may still be ahead of him but U.S. President George W. Bush came out a big winner Friday - at the World Stupidity Awards.

Bush was a dominating presence at the second edition of the awards presented at the Just for Laughs comedy festival. Host Lewis Black, whose biting satire is a highlight of TV's The Daily Show, took pride in the recognition the United States received at the awards, saying: "we are the gold standard."

Bush took the Stupidest Man of the Year Award and for the second time in the history of the two-year-old awards won the Stupidity Award for Reckless Endangerment of the Planet.

I offer the Chimp a congratulatory pretzel.

Plame: Who Knows?

Time for the monthly ritual of, "Say, what's going on with the Plame investigation?"

Once again, nobody knows. Although Swoopa at Needlenose and Laura Rozen at War and Piece speculate on the matter and what they guess is quite logical.

Bill Gertz at Moonie Times, an organization that along with throwing great coronations for the new messiah (which Congressional Officers cannot help but attend) has a real connection to the Bush Administration [and shouldn't that tell us something] wrote this:

The identity of CIA officer Valerie Plame was compromised twice before her name appeared in a news column that triggered a federal illegal-disclosure investigation, U.S. officials say.

Mrs. Plame's identity as an undercover CIA officer was first disclosed to Russia in the mid-1990s by a Moscow spy, said officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

In a second compromise, officials said a more recent inadvertent disclosure resulted in references to Mrs. Plame in confidential documents sent by the CIA to the U.S. Interests Section of the Swiss Embassy in Havana.

The documents were supposed to be sealed from the Cuban government, but intelligence officials said the Cubans read the classified material and learned the secrets contained in them, the officials said.

. . . officials said the disclosure that Mrs. Plame's cover was blown before the news column undermines the prosecution of the government official who might have revealed the name, officials said.

"The law says that to be covered by the act the intelligence community has to take steps to affirmatively protect someone's cover," one official said. "In this case, the CIA failed to do that."

Swopa believes this article really means:

That this argument is based on thoroughly unprovable allegations with no clear news "hook," not to mention being obviously implausible (Cubans secretly breaking into sealed documents show that the CIA is not trying to protect her identity?!), just underscores how unlikely it is to be suddenly showing up in a newspaper. Some Bushite official consciously researched this and handed the information to a reliably friendly reporter at this precise moment in time. Why?

I'm fortunate enough not to have firsthand experience with whether and how people being investigated by grand juries are notified of possible forthcoming indictments, but I suspect that certain steps are required to warn them of legal jeopardy. And if anyone in the White House has gotten wind of something like this, you can bet they've thought about how to prepare the media battlefield -- and that may be the invisible line connecting the dots I've just mentioned.

Laura Rozen also comments:

...does this sound like the kind of flailing, tortured legal excuse the official who is being set to be exposed or indicted is preparing? e.g. it wasn't that damaging, even if it was a technical crime, to out the identity of an undercover officer who was already "outted" to the Russians and the Cubans? Doesn't it only make them look worse? It certainly would seem to reveal the key fact: the official who outted her identity to Novak was aware that Plame was an undercover CIA officer.

And then uber blogger Josh Marshall chimes in:

There does seem to be a rush of articles aimed not simply at discrediting Wilson but specifically at arguing that there is no legal basis for a prosecution of the folks who leaked Plame's name. Who's so concerned? It makes me wonder.

I frankly have no idea what the outcome will be with Plame. I know the gist of what happened. I know its disgusting what did happen. But, whether it will lead to a criminal indictment; a thorough scolding; or not much of anything, beats me.

I know that I have a routing interest at this point, and I know what I assume [that Fitzgerald will take path #1 or #2 both politically damaging to some degree to Bush, the first being possibly catastrophic}. However, I have to admit, while Ken Starr's office was a disgusting sieve of leaks, Fitzgerald is an admirable locked-safe.

We are all just speculating -- though I have to admit I enjoy it, probably too much.

Speaking of A.W.O.L.

Steve Gillard has the disturbing article of a lot of future Preznit's (though many of these at least saw combat first).

This is a major indicator of the legitimacy and popularity of the Chimp's Iraq policy, yet once again, it is taking liberal uber bloggers like Steve (and now Atrios and The Memory Hole) to push it.

All I can do, being proudly not a reporter, but an amateur smartass, is link to the stories.

The Buck stops with you...Private

The Washington Post puts its signature on this Editorial today, commenting on the report of prisoner abuses, aka "whitewash" that was slid under the table on the day the 9/11 Commission Report came out. Good for them, now if the rest of the SCLM is paying attention...

THE ARMY'S attempt to hold itself accountable for the abuse of foreign prisoners is off to a terrible start. On Thursday, while the media and political worlds were focused on the report of the Sept. 11 commission, the Army inspector general released a 300-page summary of an investigation of "detainee operations" in Iraq and Afghanistan. Though it identified 94 cases of confirmed or possible abuse, including 20 prisoner deaths, the probe concluded by sounding the defense offered up by the Pentagon ever since the photographs from Abu Ghraib prison were published: that the crimes did not result from Army policy and were not the fault of senior commanders but were "unauthorized actions taken by a few individuals."

This conclusion is contradicted by the independent investigations and reports of the International Committee of the Red Cross, by an earlier Army investigation undertaken before the scandal became public, and by testimony given to Congress. Oddly, it doesn't even square with some of the findings buried in the inspector general's own report, which confirm that commanders in Iraq and Afghanistan ordered "high-risk" interrogation procedures to be used on prisoners without adequate safeguards, training or regard for the Geneva Conventions.

No matter: The report effectively communicates the strategy of the military brass on the detainee affair, which is to focus blame on a few low-ranking personnel, shield all senior commanders from accountability, and deny or bury any facts that interfere with these aims. In that sense, the signal it sends to Congress is clear: The Pentagon cannot be counted on to reliably or thoroughly investigate the prisoner abuse affair. An independent probe by an outside authority is desperately needed.

To the credit of Chairman John W. Warner (R-Va.), the Senate Armed Services Committee quickly assembled for a hearing on the Army report, despite the not-so-subtle timing of its release, and some Republican as well as Democratic senators rightly voiced incredulity at the Army's findings. They pointed out that, while identifying no "systemic failures" in the military, the inspector general's team chose not to investigate such episodes as the hiding of "ghost detainees" from the Red Cross -- a Geneva Convention violation that Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld has publicly stated was authorized by him. Nor did the investigation explore the handling of Red Cross reports by the staff of the Iraq commander in chief, Lt. Gen. Ricardo S. Sanchez -- which, rather than acting to stop abuses, reportedly tried to restrict further Red Cross access. In fact, no one above the rank of brigade commander was considered culpable, the inspector general candidly told the senators. "We think it ended there," said Lt. Gen. Paul T. Mikolashek.

Really? That's hard to square with the general's own report, which says that top U.S. commanders in Iraq and Afghanistan, under pressure to collect more intelligence, "published high risk [interrogation] policies that presented a significant risk of misapplication if not trained and executed carefully." Yet "not all interrogators were trained," "some inspected units were unaware of the correct command policy," and some officers "with no training in interrogation techniques began conducting their own interrogation sessions." Moreover, some of the techniques set forth by Gen. Sanchez and other senior commanders previously had been approved only for "unlawful combatants" held at Guantanamo Bay. That "appears to contradict the terms of" the Pentagon's own legal judgments, which said some interrogation methods permissible at Guantanamo could not be used in Iraq.

All this -- and yet, purportedly, there were no failures of policy, and responsibility ended at the level of a lieutenant colonel, or a reserve one-star general. The senators who rejected this whitewash were correct: It is implausible and unacceptable. If the reputation and integrity of the Army are to be restored, some other authority will need to do better.

There is literally NO FUCKING REASON to reelect the current administration which both within the White House and within its Departments has the set the tone of brutality, deceit, and spitting on our nation's honor. They assume that God ordains what they do, while those to whom they are actually accountable, THE PEOPLE, can be lied to. All this becase they believe, with some justification, that their asses will be covered by a media that cannot fathom how to report on such a depraved and ill-thought out group of zealots.

David Brooks can judge this How?

After the torture of Oprah, I made it home from the skin peel, and bikini wax (speedo wax actually) to find the Newshour with Jim Lehrer and the weekly tete-a-tete with Mark Shields and David Brooks.

Brooks opined upon Kerry's "stiffness" and "lack of charisma".

I don't know where David Brooks' glass residence is, but I'm sure it is lovely.

Burden on A.W.O.L.

I know the Righties hate Reuters, but that's too bad, they are aces in my book for (1) Not being owned by an insane cult leader; and (2) There is no Nedra Pickler.

Their headlines also manage to accurately sum up the actual meaning of the story, and today, in connection with Bush's FOUND military payroll records, they do it again.

Bush's Military Records Fail to Dispel AWOL Charges

Of course, any of us who have followed the Chimperial Presidency know that when information (this apparently was found a few days ago) gets released on a Friday afternoon, in the middle of a major newscycle, it means there is information the Bush Administration knows is bad. They know the Jonah and his collection of ninnyhammers and Instanutjob will come through for them, but eventually it will be bad.

But, back to the story:

Some of President Bush's missing Air National Guard records during the Vietnam War years, previously said to be destroyed, turned up on Friday but offered no new evidence to dispel charges by Democrats that he was absent without leave.

His whereabouts during his service as a pilot in the Texas Air National Guard in the United States during the Vietnam War have become an election-year issue. Bush's Democratic presidential challenger, John Kerry, is a decorated Vietnam War veteran.

The Pentagon, which had announced two weeks ago that the payroll records had been accidentally destroyed, blamed a clerical error for previous failure to find them.

In May 1972, Bush moved to Alabama to work on a political campaign and, he has said, to perform his Guard service there for a year. But other Guard officers have said they have no recollection of ever seeing him there.

Bush was the son of a U.S. congressman at a time when National Guard service was seen as a way for the privileged to avoid being drafted for Vietnam War duty.

Questions over his record resurfaced this year as Bush sought, in the midst of the Iraq war, to cast himself as a "war president" in his drive to win reelection on Nov. 2.

The documents released on Friday by the Pentagon included two faded computerized payroll sheets showing Bush was not paid during the latter part of 1972 and offer no evidence to place Bush in Alabama during the latter part of 1972.

I do think the presumption is now on Bush to pretty much prove that every word he manages to extrude out of his pie-hole (usually in scrambled syntax-challenged form) must be challenged for veracity with the burden upon him.

When is Peter Jennings going to apologize to Michael Moore by the way?

We here at Rising Hegemon are proud to be the 179th Leftist Blog to bring you an analysis of this story.

Cultural Snob

Attaturk was attending to personal hygiene and appearance yesterday (as he does every couple weeks because his body is a temple [granted it is a Temple of Elemental Evil, but still...]). This meant going to a location that had a television on, tuned to the cult leader of American Banality, O-P-R-A-H.

And who was the guest? Why the lovely Halle Berry. I was trapped in this location, forced to choose between reading Cosmopolitan, McCalls or watching the teevee, I chose the latter.

If there was a more unctuous period of broadcasting I have never seen it. Essentially it consisted of Halle Berry discussing how her ex-husband had that status because he kept boinking other woman.

I believe the correct diagnosis for such an individual would be INCREDIBLE DUMBASS. But, I'm no Charles Krauthammer.

Even FoxNews is more tolerable (except for the prime time hours). Man, daytime TV sucks, it is enough to make you happy to have to go to work.

Friday, July 23, 2004

Political Litmus Test, No lie

Members of a National Academy of Sciences panel challenged senior Bush administration officials over the propriety of asking the political beliefs, party memberships, other affiliations, and social policy positions of scientists being considered for federal government advisory committees. Apparently Chimpy's people only want like-minded scientists and policy planners in any federally funded positions. If Clenus had done this, the repugnicrats would have completely lost all bowel control and screamed until he was impeached or something. Personally I can't wait until they apply the litmus test for citizenship, hey taking the test should be fun.

Beyond War Casualties

I just saw the end of a documentary on the A&E network here, which stated that since World War II 150,000,000 people have died from war crimes around the world. If we assume for a moment that this number is correct, it is safe to assume that there were another 1-2 billion casualties of one kind or another from various movements and government. The only institutional response are war UN crime tribunals. It just boggles the mind that the US as the most heavily armed nation chose not to subscribe to such a process, or does it make sense - of sorts? Is anybody counting corporate casualties? We are not doing well at all.

"Wise Use" Movement": Neo-Con Extremism by Any Other Name

Since the 1980s a group of neo cons have been pushing for a bizarre stewardship model toward the environment. Large business interests, such as lumber and oil conglomerates, can "harvest" the environment so long as they use the raw materials "wisely" -- which roughly translates into whatever they choose if they plant a few trees or repair in modest fashion some of the damage to the environment that the extraction "procedures" create. Several conferences sponsored by industries such as oil, coal, and timber have focused on how to eliminate "non-wise" government regulation. Based on this essay published in USA Today, sounds like the movement is picking up steam.

Rules change would beat reckless path through forests
By Mary Zeiss Stange

We Montanans haven't heard much about the "wise use" movement in years. The phrase gained currency as a rallying cry among land developers and right-wing anti-environmentalists throughout the West during the early 1990s.

Then, graffiti started sprouting up in the heavily timbered western part of the state proclaiming that "spotted owl tastes like chicken." The Militia of Montana started networking with other so-called patriot groups to promote the idea of local sovereignty over the land and everything on it. After that, the phrase "wise use" more or less went underground.

But with the Bush administration's recent announcement of its intent to repeal the Clinton-era roadless rule, which protects 58.5 million acres of national forest, the insidious idea is poised to make a comeback. Indeed, in Montana, where logging, mining and tourism are vital industries, the concept and its anti-regulation, pro-development spirit remain alive.

The repeal would be the latest in a series of rollbacks of environmental regulatory standards by the Bush administration. But Americans and the environment would be the big losers.

States' rights issue

The administration argues that this is a states' right issue. It would be up to governors to devise their own roadless plans to block the development of federal land. Republicans have hailed the proposal as such. Montana Gov. Judy Martz, for example, applauded the administration's appreciation "that state, tribal and local governments are best equipped to make key decisions about the future of our public lands."

Yet Montana is one of the dozen Western states that stand to be most heavily affected by the move. The proposal was engineered by Agriculture Undersecretary Mark Rey, a former timber-industry lobbyist. Environmental leaders are universally outraged at what the National Environmental Trust's Philip Clapp has called "the biggest giveaway to the timber industry in the history of the national forests."

Republicans have been at pains to cloak their actions in the rhetoric of environmentalism.

Roads, they argue, are good for forests. The new, pro-development policy is, as Arizona House Speaker Jake Flake told reporters, "totally essential to getting into thinning forests so that they don't all burn."

But, according to the Biodiversity Conservation Alliance, twice as many Western forest fires start in areas with roads. And they are far more likely to be caused by human beings than by lightning, which is nature's way of thinning forests. So it's not difficult to deduce that the best way to protect the forest is to prevent the building of more roads that intensify human access.

Limiting access

This doesn't mean keeping people out of the woods. It just means you can't drive there. In June, at the annual meeting of the Outdoor Writers Association of America, National Rifle Association President Kayne Robinson excoriated environmental groups for their support of roadless wilderness. They were, he said, "trying to hoodwink hunters into voting for gun-ban candidates," and "it's pretty hard to hunt without guns."

The politics of gun control aside, it's more likely that the hunters Robinson had in mind find it pretty hard to hunt without their pickups and all-terrain vehicles, since access to some of the best public hunting land - in roadless areas - is restricted to those on foot or horseback. Those areas provide essential habitat and breeding grounds for game species increasingly feeling the encroachment of human development.

Robinson is as disingenuous regarding the ecological realities of roadless forests as the Department of Agriculture, whose mandate it is to manage the areas for the people.

In June, the Bush administration finalized, over Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski's objections, one of the largest ever timber sales in the roadless Klamath-Siskiyou region. This month, a logging plan was announced for a roadless area within Alaska's Tongass National Forest.

In light of these moves, the Bush administration's rewriting of the roadless rule looks to be, at best, an afterthought, and, at worst, downright deception.

Any way you cut it, it amounts to unwise use of the last, best places Americans have to call our own.

Mary Zeiss Stange teaches at Skidmore College and ranches in southeastern
Montana. She is a member of USA TODAY's board of contributors.


Of course I have felt this way for some time, but the fact is that Wolfowitz has been an unmitigated disaster -- along with the rest of the PNAC crowd, Feith, Carbone etc.

Yesterday the 9/11 Commission reinforced what had been said about Wolfowitz before, that he advocated going into Iraq RIGHT after the September 11, 2001 and put up the most bullshit laden of arguments. Here is the example:

A. Pages 334-336

(1) First meeting in Camp David shortly after 9/11:

[Rice] recalled thatin the first Camp David session chaired by the President, Rumsfeld asked what the administration should do about Iraq.Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz made the case for striking Iraq during "this round" of the war on terrorism.

(2) Powell on Wolfowitz in the short-term wake of 9/11:

Secretary Powell recalled that Wolfowitz--not Rumsfeld--argued that Iraq was ultimately the source of the terrorist problem and should therefore be attacked.66 Powell said that Wolfowitz was not able to justify his belief that Iraq was behind 9/11. "Paul was always of the view that Iraq was a problem that had to be dealt with," Powell told us."And he saw this as one way of using this event as a way to deal with the Iraq problem."

(3) He continues to behave like a stupid zealot (which he is of course)

Within the Pentagon, Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz continued to press the case for dealing with Iraq.Writing to Rumsfeld on September 17 in a memo headlined "Preventing More Events,"he argued that if there was even a 10 percent chance that Saddam Hussein was behind the 9/11 attack, maximum priority should be placed on eliminating that threat.Wolfowitz contended that the odds were "far more" than 1 in 10...The next day,Wolfowitz renewed the argument, writing to Rumsfeld about the interest of Yousef 's co-conspirator in the 1995 Manila air plot in crashing an explosives-laden plane into CIA headquarters, and about information from a foreign government regarding Iraqis' involvement in the attempted hijacking of a Gulf Air flight.

B. Page 256, thanks to Sadly, No!:

Tenet told us that in his world "the system was blinking red." By late July (2001,) Tenet said, it could not "get any worse." Not everyone was convinced. Some asked whether all these threats might just be deception. On June 30, the SEIB contained an article titled "Bin Ladin Threats Are Real." Yet Hadley told Tenet in July that Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz questioned the reporting. Perhaps Bin Ladin was trying to study U.S. reactions. Tenet replied that he had already addressed the Defense Department's questions on this point; the reporting was convincing.

There are, of course, plenty of reasons to fire Wolfowitz based on his testimony supporting the Iraqi war in late 2002/early 2003, but rarely has such a woeful failure been allowed to keep his job. But then again, its also been some time since we had a President to match such a boob.

Weeze is Safer thanks to My Strategery

Ah, yes, July 22, 2004, a day which will go down in history as the day after July 21, 2004.

"9/11 Commissions about to issue its report?....Gotta go!"

Thomas Kean, Chairman of the 9/11 Commission listens to President Bush express his "thanks to this guy and this guy and all the other guys for this, um, book, which doesn't have nearly as many pictures as My Pet Goat."

"Who has two thumbs and is going to be Vice-President? This guy!"

President Bush watches as Ed Gillespie and Karl Rove head out to visit the Washington Headquarters of the Kerry-Edwards Campaign.

"And then Mr. President, on the morning of November 2nd...Mr. President, you can wipe that off your shoe later, this is important."

In preparation for next week's convention Alabama's lone white Democrat picks out his seat. (C'mon people its a joke for godsake!)

President Bush looks toward his advisors for assurance that the sign and the crowd behind him doesn't mean he's about to be arrested.

In a big day for the Kerry campaign, he received the endorsement of the delegate from Hobbiton.

You hear that Tom? They are yellin' "You Suck!", that's good right?