Monday, August 6, 2007

bin Laden determined to strike US

Flashback: Aug. 6, 2001 (H/t to TP)

Six years ago today, President Bush received a classified intelligence briefing that warned bin Laden was determined to strike inside the U.S. Bush was described as being “carefree” on the day he received the briefing at his Crawford ranch in Aug. 2001. Condoleezza Rice later dismissed the urgency of the briefing, claiming it was “not a warning” but rather an “historical memo.”

bin laden

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

War costs may top $1 trillion over 10 years

The cost of military operations and diplomatic efforts in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere around the world could top $1 trillion over the next decade, according to Congressional Budget Office estimates provided to the House Budget Committee Tuesday.

The budgetary forecasts hinge largely on the size of the force deployed to Iraq between 2008 and 2017, a matter that Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England told the panel is nearly impossible to predict. "That's a long way in the future" to estimate both costs and force levels, he said.

But CBO officials, at the request of House Budget Chairman John Spratt, D-S.C., estimated that the total costs of operations would range from $924 billion to just over $1 trillion if the size of the deployed force decreases from 210,000 today to 75,000 by 2013.

That compares to a CBO estimate in February of $840 billion total cost. But if the size of the deployed force shrinks to 30,000 troops by 2010, war costs would range from $481 billion to $603 billion between 2008 and 2017, CBO said Tuesday.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Faux "News" Named #2 Top Conservative Political Website

Oops. So much for that "fair and balanced" mantra! From the comically named "Intellectual" [sic] Conservative.

Here is a ranking of the top 100 conservative political websites and blogs. Other than sifting and sorting through directories like alexa's , there’s no easy way to determine what are the most popular conservative websites. John Hawkins of rightwingnews has ranked all political websites in order of popularity in the past, but hasn’t put out an updated list since 2004. I have attempted to create an updated list of the conservative websites for 2007, using alexa’s directory and rankings. There are other sites like which use different methodology to rank the popularity of websites, however, alexa’s system, which is based on the web surfing habits of those using its browser helper software remains the most popular.

And here is the list. Intellectual [sic] Conservative rounds out the end of the top 100:

1. Drudge Report – 951
2. Fox News - 599
3. Wall Street Journal – 1,043
4. New York Post – 1,778
5. WorldNetDaily – 4,605
6. NewsMax – 5,334
7. Boston Herald – 6,684
8. Free Republic – 7,114
9. Town Hall – 7,915
10. U.S. News and World Report - 8,694
11. National Review Online – 10,502
12. Politico – 11,359
13. Lew Rockwell – 13,174
14. Washington Times – 13,621
15. Rush Limbaugh – 14,117
16. Real Clear Politics – 17,027
17. The Post Chronicle – 19,203
18. Reason Online – 19,942
19. Little Green Footballs – 21,079
20. Michelle Malkin – 23,570

Monday, July 30, 2007

New Product From Bill O'

In a desperate attempt to attract more [sad and deluded] premium members to Bill O', the Falafel King has an enticing offer to new members. Apparently though, some of the new premium members are upset and are now speaking out.

"I joined Bill O' and all I got was this lousy dildo."
(Click on photo for larger version)

H/T to "GSD" from C&L.

Romney Afraid of Snowmen, What About bin Laden?

KURTZ: Mitt Romney said that, he was expressing his reservations about joining the next YouTube debate, “I don’t think candidates should have to answer questions from a snowman.” Well let me just say this to the former governor: how are you going to deal with Osama bin Laden if you’re afraid of that snowman?

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Michelle Malkin Defends Michael Vick to Attack PETA

Michelle Malkin, in for Bill O'Reilly, talked with Daphna Nachminovich, a representative for People For The Ethical Treatment Of Animals, about Nike and Reebok's announcement that they are no longer selling products endorsed by Michael Vick. Although the public outcry about Vick's horrific "Bad News Kennels" transcends politics, Malkin chose to side with Michael Vick and attack PETA simply because it's erroneously labeled a left wing organization. Once again, reich-wingers are on the wrong side of yet another issue.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Astronauts Flew While Intoxicated

From Aviation Week (AW is loading slowly, so I C&Ped the entire story):

A panel reviewing astronaut health issues in the wake of the Lisa Nowak arrest has found that on at least two occasions astronauts were allowed to fly after flight surgeons and other astronauts warned they were so intoxicated that they posed a flight-safety risk.

The panel, also reported "heavy use of alcohol" by astronauts before launch, within the standard 12-hour "bottle to throttle" rule applied to NASA flight crew members.

A NASA spokesman declined comment on the findings, which were obtained by Aviation Week & Space Technology. The spokesman said a press conference has tentatively been scheduled for Friday afternoon on the issue. At the direction of Administrator Michael Griffin, NASA Chief Medical Officer Dr. Richard S. Williams set up the panel to review astronaut medical and psychological screening after Nowak was arrested in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 5 on charges of attempted murder and attempted kidnapping for allegedly stalking and threatening a woman who was dating another astronaut. The attempted murder charge was subsequently dropped.

The panel is composed of military and civilian government physicians, psychologists, lawyers, safety experts and astronauts under the chairmanship of U.S. Air Force Col. Richard Bachmann, dean of the Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine. Panel members visited Johnson Space Center in April to gather information from flight surgeons and the astronaut office on astronaut health screening. A panel member said Wednesday the report was still in draft form, and probably would be released in August. Separately, Griffin ordered JSC Director Mike Coats to review intake and on-going psychological screening for astronaut candidates and astronauts, and to recommend changes if necessary.

Griffin also directed Coats, himself a former astronaut, to "determine whether there were any areas of concern - any leading indicators we might have picked up on, based on Lisa Nowak's dealings with other astronauts or NASA employees," in the words of Deputy Administrator Shana Dale.

The Bachmann panel report apparently does not deal directly with Nowak or mention any other astronaut by name. Coats' findings also will be part of the press conference on Friday, according to the agency spokesman.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Bush Breaks Disapproval Records: Impeachment Imminent?

H/t to C&L

dubyah is the most unpopular President [sic] for the longest stretch of time in A
American history. Keith reports on the latest poll findings confirming this sad, sad fact, and conservative Republican & former Reagan Deputy AG Bruce Fein talks about why Bush must be impeached.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Bill Maher: The Decider on HBO

In his eighth solo HBO comedy special, comedian and social commentator Bill Maher offers acerbic takes on a wide range of social and political issues. Among the hot-button subjects he'll discuss are sex, drugs, Iraq, immigration, the environment and, of course, President Bush.

Here are 8 Youtube videos of his comedy special:

1 of 8

2 of 8

3 of 8

4 of 8

5 of 8

6 of 8

7 of 8

8 of 8

Minimum Wage Goes Up Today

From the NYT
The minimum wage rises 70 cents to $5.85 an hour today, the first increase in a decade. It ends the longest period without an increase since the federal minimum wage was enacted in 1938. The last previous increase came in September 1997. Legislation signed in May increases the wage 70 cents each summer until 2009, when it will reach $7.25 an hour. Government figures show about 1.7 million people earned $5.15 or less per hour in 2006. A person working 40 hours a week at the current minimum wage of $5.15 makes about $10,700 a year. A raise to $5.85 an hour would increase that to $12,168 a year before taxes. An increase to $7.25 would raise that to just over $15,000 a year.

Lindsay Lohan: Arrested Again, Mug Shot

From TSG

Here's the mug shot Lindsay Lohan posed for this morning following her arrest in Santa Monica for drunk driving and cocaine possession. The actress, 21, was nabbed after cops spotted her SUV chasing another vehicle at high speed. After Lohan failed a field sobriety test, she was transported to the L.A. county lockup, where a pat down search turned up cocaine in her pants pocket. Click here to see the Santa Monica Police Department's booking sheet for Lindsay Dee Lohan, accused felon. (2 pages)

Monday, July 23, 2007

Caption This: The Decider

Criminalizing the Antiwar Movement

From Global Research

The Executive Order entitled "Blocking Property of Certain Persons Who Threaten Stabilization Efforts in Iraq" provides the President with the authority to confiscate the assets of whoever opposes the US led war.

A presidential Executive Order issued on July 17th, repeals with the stroke of a pen the right to dissent and to oppose the Pentagon's military agenda in Iraq.

The Executive Order entitled "Blocking Property of Certain Persons Who Threaten Stabilization Efforts in Iraq" provides the President with the authority to confiscate the assets of "certain persons" who oppose the US led war in Iraq:

"I have issued an Executive Order blocking property of persons determined to have committed, or to pose a significant risk of committing, an act or acts of violence that have the purpose or effect of threatening the peace or stability of Iraq or the Government of Iraq or undermining efforts to promote economic reconstruction and political reform in Iraq or to provide humanitarian assistance to the Iraqi people."

In substance, under this executive order, opposing the war becomes an illegal act.

The Executive Order criminalizes the antiwar movement. It is intended to "blocking property" of US citizens and organizations actively involved in the peace movement. It allows the Department of Defense to interfere in financial affairs and instruct the Treasury to "block the property" and/or confiscate/ freeze the assets of "Certain Persons" involved in antiwar activities. It targets those "Certain Persons" in America, including civil society organizatioins, who oppose the Bush Administration's "peace and stability" program in Iraq, characterized, in plain English, by an illegal occupation and the continued killing of innocent civilians.

The Executive Order also targets those "Certain Persons" who are "undermining efforts to promote economic reconstruction", or who, again in plain English, are opposed to the confiscation and privatization of Iraq's oil resources, on behalf of the Anglo-American oil giants.

The order is also intended for anybody who opposes Bush's program of "political reform in Iraq", in other words, who questions the legitimacy of an Iraqi "government" installed by the occupation forces.

Moreover, those persons or nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), who provide bona fide humanitarian aid to Iraqi civilians, and who are not approved by the US Military or its lackeys in the US sponsored Iraqi puppet government are also liable to have their financial assets confiscated.

The executive order violates the First, Fourth and Fifth Amendments of the US Constitution. It repeals one of the fundamental tenets of US democracy, which is the right to free expression and dissent. The order has not been the object of discussion in the US Congress. Sofar, it has not been addressed by the US antiwar movement, in terms of a formal statement.

Apart from a bland Associated Press wire report, which presents the executive order as "an authority to use financial sanctions", there has been no media coverage or commentary of a presidential decision which strikes at the heart of the US Constitution..

Broader implications

The criminalization of the State is when the sitting President and Vice President use and abuse their authority through executive orders, presidential directives or otherwise to define "who are the criminals" when in fact they they are the criminals.

This latest executive order criminalizes the peace movement. It must be viewed in relation to various pieces of "anti-terrorist" legislation, the gamut of presidential and national security directives, etc., which are ultimately geared towards repealing constitutional government and installing martial law in the event of a "national emergency".

The war criminals in high office are intent upon repressing all forms of dissent which question the legitimacy of the war in Iraq.

The executive order combined with the existing anti-terrorist legislation is eventually intended to be used against the anti-war and civil rights movements. It can be used to seize the assets of antiwar groups in America as well as block the property and activities of non-governmental humanitarian organizations providing relief in Iraq, seizing the assets of alternative media involved in reporting the truth regarding the US-led war, etc.

In May 2007, Bush issued a major presidential National Security Directive (National Security and Homeland Security Presidential Directive NSPD 51/HSPD 20), which would suspend constitutional government and instate broad dictatorial powers under martial law in the case of a "Catastrophic Emergency" (e.g. Second 9/11 terrorist attack).

On July 11, 2007 the CIA published its "National Intelligence Estimate" which pointed to an imminent Al Qaeda attack on America, a second 9/11 which, according to the terms of NSPD 51, would immediately be followed by the suspension of constitutional government and the instatement of martial law under the authority of the president and the vice-president. (For further details, see Michel Chossudovsky, Bush Directive for a "Catastrophic Emergency" in America: Building a Justification for Waging War on Iran? June 2007)

NSPD 51 grants unprecedented powers to the Presidency and the Department of Homeland Security, overriding the foundations of Constitutional government. It allows the sitting president to declare a “national emergency” without Congressional approval. The implementation of NSPD 51 would lead to the de facto closing down of the Legislature and the militarization of justice and law enforcement.

"The President shall lead the activities of the Federal Government for ensuring constitutional government...."

Were NSPD 51 to be invoked, Vice President Dick Cheney, who constitutes the real power behind the Executive, would essentially assume de facto dictatorial powers, circumventing both the US Congress and the Judiciary, while continuing to use President George W. Bush as a proxy figurehead.

NSPD 51, while bypassing the Constitution, nonetheless, envisages very precise procedures which guarantee the powers of Vice President Dick Cheney in relation to "Continuity of Goverment" functions under Martial Law:

"This directive shall be implemented in a manner that is consistent with, and facilitates effective implementation of, provisions of the Constitution concerning succession to the Presidency or the exercise of its powers, and the Presidential Succession Act of 1947 (3 U.S.C. 19), with consultation of the Vice President and, as appropriate, others involved. Heads of executive departments and agencies shall ensure that appropriate support is available to the Vice President and others involved as necessary to be prepared at all times to implement those provisions." (NSPD 51, op cit.)

The executive order to confiscate the assets of antiwar/peace activists is broadly consistent with NSPD 51. It could be triggered even in the absence of a "Catastrophic emergency" as envisaged under NSPD 51. It repeals democracy. It goes one step further in "criminalizing" all forms of opposition and dissent. to the US led war and "Homeland Security" agenda.

Wedding Announcements: Just for the hell of it

"I don't know, last I saw them, they . . "

Hurry .. hurry ..

"Well, years ago I might have . . . ..

"The main thing I learned in College was
. . ."

"As soon as I get done here I'm gonna . . ."

"The coroner told me that it looked like he had
been hit in the head several times with a . . ." comment .

"Not only has my ass been itchin', on closer
inspection I find my . . . "

No Comment ... really!!!

"It figures, right after I got my Butts-McCracken

condition cleared up, now I've got an . . . ."

"Honest Judge, I'm not really a . . . ."

"My Doctor told me the best way to get rid of my
Aikin-Johnson was to . . . "

"And...the Doctor also suggested for preventive measures,

at least twice a week, I should be . . . "

"After I get all of these medical problems taken care of,
I think I'll go get a . . ."

The Only Moral Abortion Is My Abortion

Right-wing dilemma and scathing hypocrisy (From DKos)

When the Anti-Choice Choose

Abortion is a highly personal decision that many women are sure they'll never have to think about until they're suddenly faced with an unexpected pregnancy. But this can happen to anyone, including women who are strongly anti-choice. So what does an anti-choice woman do when she experiences an unwanted pregnancy herself? Often, she will grin and bear it, so to speak, but frequently, she opts for the solution she would deny to other women - abortion.

In the spring of 2000, I collected the following anecdotes directly from abortion doctors and other clinic staff in North America, Australia, and Europe. The stories are presented in the providers' own words, with minor editing for grammar, clarity, and brevity. Names have been omitted to protect privacy.

"I have done several abortions on women who have regularly picketed my clinics, including a 16 year old schoolgirl who came back to picket the day after her abortion, about three years ago. During her whole stay at the clinic, we felt that she was not quite right, but there were no real warning bells. She insisted that the abortion was her idea and assured us that all was OK. She went through the procedure very smoothly and was discharged with no problems. A quite routine operation. Next morning she was with her mother and several school mates in front of the clinic with the usual anti posters and chants. It appears that she got the abortion she needed and still displayed the appropriate anti views expected of her by her parents, teachers, and peers." (Physician, Australia)

"We too have seen our share of anti-choice women, ones the counselors usually grit their teeth over. Just last week a woman announced loudly enough for all to hear in the recovery room, that she thought abortion should be illegal. Amazingly, this was her second abortion within the last few months, having gotten pregnant again within a month of the first abortion. The nurse handled it by talking about all the carnage that went on before abortion was legalized and how fortunate she was to be receiving safe, professional care. However, this young woman continued to insist it was wrong and should be made illegal. Finally the nurse said, 'Well, I guess we won't be seeing you here again, not that you're not welcome.' Later on, another patient who had overheard this exchange thanked the nurse for her remarks." (Clinic Administrator, Alberta)

"Recently, we had a patient who had given a history of being a 'pro-life' activist, but who had decided to have an abortion. She was pleasant to me and our initial discussion was mutually respectful. Later, she told someone on my staff that she thought abortion is murder, that she is a murderer, and that she is murdering her baby. So before doing her procedure, I asked her if she thought abortion is murder - the answer was yes. I asked her if she thought I am a murderer, and if she thought I would be murdering her baby, and she said yes. But murder is a crime, and murderers are executed. Is this a crime? Well, it should be, she said. At that point, she became angry and hostile, and the summary of the conversation was that she regarded me as an abortion-dispensing machine, and how dare I ask her what she thinks. After explaining to her that I do not perform abortions for people who think I am a murderer or people who are angry at me, I declined to provide her with medical care. I do not know whether she found someone else to do her abortion." (Physician, Colorado)

"In 1973, after Roe v. Wade, abortion became legal but had to be performed in a hospital. That of course was changed later. For the first 'legal abortion day' I had scheduled five procedures. While scrubbing between cases, I was accosted by the Chief of the OB/Gyn service. He asked me, 'How many children are you going to kill today?' My response, out of anger, was a familiar vulgar retort. About three months later, this born-again Christian called me to explain that he was against abortion but his daughter was only a junior in high school and was too young to have a baby and he was also afraid that if she did have a baby she would not want to put it up for adoption. I told him he did not need to explain the situation to me. 'All I need to know', I said, 'is that SHE wants an abortion.' Two years later I performed a second abortion on her during her college break. She thanked me and pleaded, 'Please don't tell my dad, he is still anti-abortion.'" (Physician, Washington State)

Go to DKos for additional stories of right-wing hypocrisy

Miers, Bush Chief of Staff to face contempt charges

From Raw story

Former White House Counsel Harriet Miers and Joshua Bolten, the current Chief of Staff to President George W. Bush, will likely be charged with contempt by the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday this week.

"This investigation, including the reluctant but necessary decision to move forward with contempt, has been a very deliberative process, taking care at each step to respect the Executive Branch’s legitimate prerogatives,” said Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, in a statement. "I've allowed the White House and Ms. Miers every opportunity to cooperate with this investigation, either voluntarily or under subpoena. It is still my hope that they will reconsider this hard-line position, and cooperate with our investigation so that we can get to the bottom of this matter."

Through an attorney, Miers had had earlier stated that she does not fear contempt charges. She refused to comply with a subpoena and appear before the House Committee on July 12 as part of the investigation into the firing of 9 US Attorneys. Bolten also has failed to turn over documents sought by House Democrats. The Bush chief of staff was ordered to comply with the subpoena by 10 AM this morning.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

How to Create an Angry American: Expose the Lies

H/T to Informed Consent:

A clever montage of Bush administration falsehoods and denials regarding the Iraq War, via YouTube:

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Mitt Supports Comparison of Hillary and Obama to Bin Laden

From TMZ:

Not everyone is a fan of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, but comparing them to one of the most dastardly pieces of human excrement of all time -- that might be bit much. Especially for a presidential candidate.
TMZ obtained photos of presidential candidate Mitt Romney trying to win over grammatically challenged South Carolinians Thursday by holding a sign that said, "No to Obama, Osama and Chelsea's Moma."

Olbermann Skewers "The Falafel Factor"

Keith brings us the latest installment of the new FOX hit series, "The Falafel Factor.

Mitt & Rudy - Draft Dodging For Dummies

H/T to C&L

Draft Dodger Rudy Mitt Via Salon:

Nothing unites the Republican candidates for president or excites the conservative base more than their bellicose barking about war and confrontation. The GOP presidential debates often sound like a tough-man competition, with Rudolph Giuliani denouncing the “cut-and-run” Democrats, Mitt Romney demanding a double-size Guantánamo detention camp, and the rest of the pack struggling to keep pace with the snarling alpha dogs.

Consider Giuliani, the former New York mayor who has remained among the most vocal supporters of the invasion and occupation of Iraq. He never hesitates to suggest that politicians with differing opinions simply lack guts. When he spoke at the 2004 Republican convention, he gleefully insinuated that Democratic nominee John Kerry lacked the fortitude to combat terrorism. Now he denigrates the supposedly spineless Democrats running for president in 2008.

But he has always confined his enthusiasm for war to podium speeches and position papers. Born in 1944, young Rudy was highly eligible for military service when he reached his 20s during the Vietnam War. He did not volunteer for combat — as Kerry did — and instead found a highly creative way to dodge the draft.

If Giuliani has a draft problem, Romney’s may be even worse. The former Massachusetts governor, whose supporters object strenuously to any discussion of his religious beliefs, got his military service deferred thanks to the Mormon church. Read more…

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Bill O'Reilly Defends Pedophiles...again

Keith Olbermann examines another example of how Bill O’Reilly is literally losing his mind on the air. First, Bill-O finds himself in the odd position of defending a pedophile (yet again) in an attempt to slam MSNBC/NBC. This is followed by, as originally noted by the hilarious show "The Soup", Bill-O's interview with the beleaguered Miss New Jersey over blackmailed photographs which takes a distinct turn into creepy-Bill-O-fantasy-land.

Watch the Video:

H/T to C&

National Review Love Boat: Let's Execute Some Liberals!

The New Republic's Johann Hari recently went on the National Review cruise and then filed this extraordinary report about what he witnessed (the full article is also available here). Hari mingled in with the NR faithful who, unaware that he was a reporter, provided him with material like this:

I lie on the beach with Hillary-Ann, a chatty, scatty 35-year-old Californian designer. As she explains the perils of Republican dating, my mind drifts, watching the gentle tide. When I hear her say, " Of course, we need to execute some of these people," I wake up. Who do we need to execute? She runs her fingers through the sand lazily. "A few of these prominent liberals who are trying to demoralise the country," she says. "Just take a couple of these anti-war people off to the gas chamber for treason to show, if you try to bring down America at a time of war, that's what you'll get." She squints at the sun and smiles. " Then things'll change."
And, at a dinner Hari attended on the first day:
To my left, I find a middle-aged Floridian with a neat beard. To my right are two elderly New Yorkers who look and sound like late-era Dorothy Parkers, minus the alcohol poisoning. They live on Park Avenue, they explain in precise Northern tones. "You must live near the UN building," the Floridian says to one of the New York ladies after the entree is served. Yes, she responds, shaking her head wearily. "They should suicide-bomb that place," he says. They all chuckle gently. How did that happen? How do you go from sweet to suicide-bomb in six seconds?


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Larry Flynt says he has 30 more names!

Larry Flynt told Larry King that he has at least 30 more names to release in his quest to expose Republican hypocrisy. Flynt said we will be shocked at a certain Senator that he has left unnamed so far.

Caption This: David Vitter

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Round II: Michael Moore vs. Blitzer

Senate moves to cut off funding for Cheney

Senate Democrats moved Tuesday to cut off funding for U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney's office in a continuing battle over whether he must comply with national security disclosure rules.

A Senate appropriations panel chaired by Democratic Sen. Richard Durbin refused to fund $4.8 million in the vice president's budget until Cheney's office complies with parts of an executive order governing its handling of classified information.

At issue is a requirement that executive branch offices provide data on how much material they classify and declassify. That information is to be provided to the Information Security Oversight Office at The National Archives.

The funding cut came as the appropriations panel approved 5-4 along party lines a measure funding White House operations, the Treasury Department and many smaller agencies.

Poll: America disagrees with Libby pardon

66% of Americans believes Bush should not have commuted Scooter Libby’s prison sentence, according to a new Gallup poll.


H/T to Think Progress

Sunday, July 8, 2007

TDS: You don't know Dick

Nixon on Fred Thompson: "He’s Dumb as Hell"

From the Pensito Review

Pres. Nixon didn’t want Fred Thompson as minority counsel during the Watergate hearings because he doubted the mental capacity of the future actor and lobbyist.

Thompson, then 30, was appointed counsel by his political mentor, Tennessee Sen. Howard Baker, the top Republican on the Senate committee. Thompson had been an assistant U.S. attorney in Nashville and had managed Baker’s re-election campaign…

Nixon was disappointed with the selection of Thompson, whom he called “dumb as hell.” Nixon did not think Thompson was skilled enough to interrogate unfriendly witnesses and would be outsmarted by the committee’s Democratic counsel.

Powell tried to talk Bush out of war

From Times Online:

The former American secretary of state Colin Powell has revealed that he spent 2½ hours vainly trying to persuade President George W Bush not to invade Iraq and believes today’s conflict cannot be resolved by US forces.

“I tried to avoid this war,” Powell said at the Aspen Ideas Festival in Colorado. “I took him through the consequences of going into an Arab country and becoming the occupiers.”

Powell has become increasingly outspoken about the level of violence in Iraq, which he believes is in a state of civil war. “The civil war will ultimately be resolved by a test of arms,” he said. “It’s not going to be pretty to watch, but I don’t know any way to avoid it. It is happening now.”

He added: “It is not a civil war that can be put down or solved by the armed forces of the United States.” All the military could do, Powell suggested, was put “a heavier lid on this pot of boiling sectarian stew”.

The signs are that the views of Powell and other critics of the war are finally being heard in the Pentagon, if not yet in the White House. Robert Gates, the defence secretary, is drawing up plans to reduce troop levels in Iraq in anticipation that General David Petraeus, the commander in Iraq, will not be able to deliver an upbeat progress report in September on the American troop surge.

Sheehan considers challenge to Pelosi


Cindy Sheehan, the soldier's mother who galvanized the anti-war movement, said Sunday that she plans to seek House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's congressional seat unless she introduces articles of impeachment against President Bush in the next two weeks.

Sheehan said she will run against the San Francisco Democrat in 2008 as an independent if Pelosi does not seek by July 23 to impeach Bush. That's when Sheehan and her supporters are to arrive in Washington, D.C., after a 13-day caravan and walking tour starting next week from the group's war protest site near Bush's Crawford ranch.

"Democrats and Americans feel betrayed by the Democratic leadership," Sheehan told The Associated Press. "We hired them to bring an end to the war. I'm not too far from San Francisco, so it wouldn't be too big of a move for me. I would give her a run for her money.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Campaign to Impeach Cheney and Bush

From FarLeft:

8/18/07 - Mark Your Calendars Folks

Write your Representative and both Senators.

If you're looking for reasons to include in your e-mail, try:

* the 8/18/07 impeachment site
* reasons to impeach Bush
* reasons to impeach Cheney

It doesn't have to be a long letter. Something handwritten might be nice. So, mark it down - August 18, 2007 - reserve 30 minutes to make your voice heard.

You can find the address for your Congresspersons at the following sites:

* enter your zip code or click your state
* select your member's name or enter your zip code
* enter your zip code or select your state

World's Worst: Cavuto, O'Reilly, O'Reilly

H/t to C&

Friday night's Worst Person In The World honors go to Neil Cavuto, BillO and...BillO. Mr.Orally won the Silver for getting his radio show yanked from the Washington D.C. airwaves to make way for a sports talk show, but he takes the Gold for his report on a "national underground network of lesbian gangs carrying pink pistols" who are terrorizing and raping young girls and forcing them into lesbianism. A guest on his show stated that there are some 150 of these lesbian gangs in the D.C. area, which of course turned out to be false.

Three Solid Sources: Valerie Wilson Was a Covert Agent When Team Cheney Outed Her

From the Pensito Review:

1. In a court filing in May, special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald stated Wilson was covert:

An unclassified summary of outed CIA officer Valerie Plame’s employment history at the spy agency, disclosed for the first time today in a court filing by Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald, indicates that Plame was “covert” when her name became public in July 2003.

If Fitzgerald submitted false documents to the court, we can assume the jackals on the right would have found this out by now and his head would be on a pike.

2. Valerie Wilson’s sworn testimony before the Oversight Committee of the House of Representatives:

I worked in the Counterproliferation Division of the CIA, still as a covert officer whose affiliation with the CIA was classified.

Same as above. Wilson would be facing prison right now for lying under oath, if Republicans had evidence that this statement was false.

3. The CIA has said Wilson was covert — twice:

At the Oversight hearing in March, Chairman Henry Waxman, D-West Hollywood, read a statement that had been approved by the head of the CIA, Gen. Michael Hayden, a Bush appointee:

“During her employment at the CIA, Ms. Wilson was undercover. Her employment status with the CIA was classified information, prohibited from disclosure under Executive Order 12958. At the time of the publication of Robert Novak’s column on July 14, 2003, Ms. Wilson’s CIA employment status was covert. This was classified information. Ms. Wilson served in senior management positions at the CIA in which she oversaw the work for other CIA employees and she attained the level of GS-14 — Step Six under the federal pay scale. Ms. Wilson worked on some of the most sensitive and highly secretive matters handled by the CIA. Ms. Wilson served at various times overseas for the CIA.”

Two months after she was outed, the CIA described Wilson as being an “undercover operative” in a letter to the Dept. of Justice:

On September 16, 2003 the CIA sent a letter to the US Department of Justice, asserting that Plame’s status as a CIA undercover operative was classified information and requesting a federal investigation. Knowingly leaking the identity of a covert agent is a criminal violation of the Intelligence Identities Protection Act (IIPA), and the CIA is required by law to report any such possible criminal violation.

Leaving IIPA aside, the Bush officials who publicized Wilson’s name clearly violated the terms of their high level security clearances, the penalties for which include losing the clearance. But both Armitage and Libby kept their clearances until they resigned. Rove still has his.

Friday, July 6, 2007

DC Talk Radio Station Drops Bill O’Reilly

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From Think Progress:
Washington DC FM talk radio station 106.7 WJFK yesterday announced it was dropping Bill O’Reilly’s nationally syndicated show, and replacing it with a sports-talk program. The Washington Post reports today that O’Reilly’s cancellation is a “case in point” of how poorly conservative radio programs have fared in DC:

With the exception of Rush Limbaugh, conservative talk-radio hosts have struggled for years to find a wide audience on the local dial. While Limbaugh’s afternoon program remains popular on WMAL (630 AM), not many other conservatives’ programs have.

The Real Romney

Footage from the Romney/Kennedy Debate, October 1994. Romney will say ANYTHING to get elected.....i.e, typical reich-winger.

Song of the Day (Chris Cornell, 'Black Hole Sun [acoustic version]')

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Fox"News" Website Obsesses Over Gore's Son

As of 6:15 ET on July 5th, the main page of the fox"news" website has four links related to Al Gore's son.

I took snapshots of the [propaganda] web page and broke up the page into two different files with each showing two links to the [non-]story. Click on the thumbnails for the full sized file:

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But, here is a shrunken version of the main page showing all four links at once:
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Is this the hard-hitting "news" that the far right so desires? Apparently so! No wonder the right-wing is notoriously uniformed when it comes to world events, facts, knowledge, and reason.

Update I: As of 11:00 am ET (July 6th), the fox "news" website still has two links to the Gore [non-]story. One link is listed under the "Health" section of the web page which includes stories pertaining to:
* Wine May Curb Cavities
* HIV Cases in India Less Than Half of Previous...
* 43 Treated for Meningitis at Rainbow Gathering
* Burger King to Cut the Trans Fat
* Cues May Signal Autism in Tots as Young as 14 Mos.
* West Nile Identified in Connecticut Mosquitoes

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Stupid People Say Stupid Things

"And Iran declared war on us when they took hostages from our embassy in 1979. So they are indeed at war with us, for whatever that's worth to you." - Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit.

Hmmm, then I guess that makes Reynolds' hero and favored jerk off material (Reagan & Co.) guilty of treason. Nice. Think about that the next time your hand creeps down into your dirty tightie whities, Glenn!

Blair Announces Removal of 1600 Troops, Bush Adds 1,000 Troops to Surge: Coincidence?

In the wake of the announcement that Great Britain will be withdrawing its almost 7,000 troops from Iraq, Administration officials are claiming this is good news. In fact, according to ABC News (via ThinkProgres), Vice President Cheney "said the move was actually good news and a sign of progress in Iraq.”

According to the plan, "Britain will withdraw around 1,600 troops from Iraq in the coming months and aims to further cut its 7,100-strong contingent by late summer if Iraqi forces can secure the country's south, Prime Minister Tony Blair said Wednesday."

While this is great news, the MSM has glossed over an additional piece of information: that Bush added another 1,000 troops to the surge last Friday.

According to a press release from the DoD:

"This three-month acceleration affects approximately 1,000 service members. U.S force levels in Iraq continue to be conditions-based, and are determined upon the recommendations of military commanders in Iraq and in consultation with the Iraqi government."

Less than a week before Tony Blair announced that close to 1,600 British troops will be making their way home shortly, it seems President Bush has compensated for that difference by adding an additional 1,000 American troops in Iraq.

Since Blair is typically considered Bush's lapdog, it is hard to believe that Bush was not aware of Blair's plans less than a week ago, when the decision to send further US troops into harms way was decided upon.

Monday, February 19, 2007

NJ Civil Unions in Effect Today

As of midnight this morning, civil unions have officially become recognized in the state of New Jersey.

"The civil unions, which offer the legal benefits but not the title of marriage, were granted automatically to the hundreds of gay New Jersey couples who had previously been joined in civil unions or married in other states or nations."

New Jersey is now the third state to recognize civil unions, following Connecticut and Vermont.

A handful of town halls opened their doors at 12:01 this morning to accomodate those seeking to apply for a license. New Jersey has a 72-hour waiting period, so those new applicants will not be able to hold their ceremonies until the waiting period is up.

While the civil union law is not considered "equal" by many advocates, including the ACLU, this is a positive step forward in recognizing the rights of all.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Britney Spears Goes Bald

Britney Spears sported a newly shaved head when she dropped by a Los Angeles tattoo parlor and quickly drew a crowd.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Hardaway Banished for Anti-Gay Remarks

The NBA has banned Tim Hardaway from this weekend's All-Star game festivities in Las Vegas because of anti-gay remarks he made earlier in the week. Hardaway said: "I hate gay people. Let it be known, I don't like gay people."

NBA commissioner, David Stern, explained why, "We acted immediately, we told him he couldn't do anymore work for us because his views don't represent our views."

A transcript to Hardaway's rant can be found here.

Air America Gets New Ownership

Air America is a wonderful and brilliant outlet for the truth and progress, but they really dropped the ball when it came to developing a long-term profitable business plan. Hopefully the new ownership will get this pro-America outlet on its feet again:

A federal bankruptcy judge on Friday approved the sale of the liberal talk radio network Air America Radio for $4.25 million to Stephen L. Green, founder of a New York real estate firm.

Green and his brother Mark Green — the longtime liberal New York City politician and frequent guest on Air America — plan to continue running the network.

Stupid People Say Stupid Things

"I'm not sure anything went wrong." - Tony Snow on Iraq.

No additional comments necessary.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

More Republic Party Values: Death Threats

The comedy routine known as republic party "morals" just gets better and better. The wing-nuts of all wing-nuts, Pat Robertson, threatened to kill a man.

A plaintiff in a federal lawsuit against Pat Robertson says the televangelist threatened his life and that of his family at a legal proceeding Wednesday in the Norfolk federal courthouse.

The accuser, Phillip Busch, is suing Robertson for misappropriation of his image in the promotion of Robertson's protein diet shake.

According to a complaint Busch filed with the Norfolk police, Robertson entered a room in the courthouse Wednesday afternoon to be questioned for a deposition – an out-of-court form of testimony – and told Busch:

"I am going to kill you and your family."

Olbermann Extends Contract 4 More Years!

Great news! The right-wing MSM gets to keep a liberal voice of reason for 4 more years! From MSNBC:

MSNBC’s flagship franchise is safely locked in place for four more years after “Countdown” host Keith Olbermann and NBC News agreed to an extension of his contract through 2011.

“It (Countdown) is obviously an incredibly important franchise for us,” NBC News President Steve Capus said. “It is something that has really put MSNBC back on the map.”

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Republic Party Values: DUI and Flashing

More upstanding and comedic-like values from the so-called "party of morals":

1) Former Congressman, Joseph M. McDade (R-PA) was issued a summons on a charge of exposure of sexual organs (i.e. flashing), a misdemeanor that carries up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine. McDade, who is 75 years old, served in the House from 1963 to 1999.

2) U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s daughter, Ann S. Banaszewski, was arrested this week and charged with driving under the influence of alcohol and child endangerment.
I bet both instances are Clinton's fault (Tm).

Happy Valentine's Day Dr. Matt!

A few of Dr. Matt's fans approached me this week, expressing desire to do something nice for him on Valentine's Day. So, the ever wonderful ET wrote this lovely poem, dedicated to Dr. Matt on this Valentine's Day!

You can leave your Valentine's Day wishes in the comments below.

A Sonnet For Dr. Matt

We’ve got a Valentine that we adore.
His name is Dr. Matt, of blogging fame;
He always keeps us coming back for more.
There’s only ONE of him, which is a shame.

His insights make us dizzy with delight,
He wins our hearts with his mysterious eyes.
He slams wingnuttery by day and night
As we read on, and heave romantic sighs.

We love his wit, his charm, his buff physique,
His warm caresses, his incisive brain –
And if for truths more intimate you’d seek?
There is NO standard he does not maintain!

So, Dr. Matt, we send this poem to you,
With Love – your Newshound Valentine ladies true.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Dick and Lynne Cheney read Valentine's Day Cards

H/t to rawstory.

In a comedy skit from Saturday Night Live, "Dick and Lynne Cheney" read Valentine's Day cards from various admirers.

SNL veteran Darrell Hammond portrays Cheney, complete with familiar facial gestures and monotone delivery.

He reads one Valentine from Cheney's former chief of staff, Scooter Libby, presently on trial: "Roses are red / Violets are blue / If I go to jail / You're gonna go too."

Hammond's Cheney pretended not to recognize Libby's name.

Another valentine from longtime friend Harry Whittington read, "Dear Dick, Remember when you shot me in the face? Well, down here in Texas, when I go anyplace they say there goes the guy Dick Cheney shot in the face."

"That's nice," said Hammond's Cheney.

Mitt Is In: Romney Joins 2008 Presidential Race

In his home state of Michigan, where his father was a three-term governor, the former GOP Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney declared his candidacy for president.

I really, really hope Mitt becomes the presidential choice for the republic party. Mitt is a Mormon and the republic party wing-nuts will no doubt stay home in masses rather than vote for a Mormon. The Robertsons, Falwells, and the rest of the freak show known as a the republic party will soundly distance themselves from a Mormon. GO MITT!!!!!!!

Stupid People Say Stupid Things

"By the way, a lot of us are also very concerned about the possibility of a, quote, 'Tet Offensive.' You know, some large-scale tact that could then switch American public opinion the way that the Tet Offensive did." - Senator John McCain discussing public opinion of the war in Iraq.

Switch the American public opinion? To what? 100% opposed? Looks like Bush has been slipping McCain polls from 2003.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Rudy Giuliani, Cross Dresser

Rudy Giuliani is apparently the best the republic party can come up with. Indeed, the party of religiousfake morals will certainly embrace a former cross dresser as their candidate for the White House.

Breaking News: Dr. Matt, Anna Nicole, and Our Baby

Well, I figured it was about time to come clean and finally reveal that I am the father of Dannielynn, the child that Anna Nicole (I actually called her "monkey"; it's a pet name) birthed Sept. 7, 2006. All the news outlets and tabloids keep speculating about who actually is the father. Well, they all have it wrong. I won't reveal the details, yet, of how Monkey and I met (and the ensuing romantic endeavors). I'm waiting to give my exclusive to either 60 Minutes, People, the Outdoor Channel, or Mad Magazine.

Portugal Pledges to Legalize Abortion

Although a clear majority in Portugal's referendum voted to legalize abortion in the first 10 weeks of pregnancy, fewer than half the electorate voted, meaning the result is not legally binding.

Almost 60 percent of voters approved the referendum allowing women to opt for abortions, while slightly more than 40 percent opposed it. Under Portuguese law, however, more than 50 percent of the country's 8.9 million registered voters must participate in a referendum to make the ballot valid. The turnout yesterday was 44 percent.

SNL: Obama 'Blackness Scale'

Stupid People Say Stupid Things

"We are very fortunate to have President Bush..." - 2008 Republican Presidential Candidate Rudy Giuliani, virtually ending his campaign as soon as it began!

Dixie Chicks Win 5 Grammys: Wing-Nuts Will Explode

The Dixie Chicks won five Grammys at the 49th annual honors, including album of the year for "Taking the Long Way," song of the year (a songwriter's award) and record of the year for "Not Ready to Make Nice".

Prediction: The Wing-Nuts will be in full blown fake outrage tomorrow with their usual "liberal bias", "anti-American", etc., rhetoric. Nonetheless, the Dixie Chicks are a great group and fully deserve their awards.