"On Topic" With Doug Krile

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Saturday Night Blogging

Arkansas has an off-week.  Missouri (daughter's school) won big.  Iowa plays Ohio State. I'm a native Iowan. Time for some football. Blogging returns at halftime or tomorrow morning. Hang in there. It'll all be okay.


|

The Story That Ain't Going Away

The Foley resignation.  And, as I've been saying, the almost-even-bigger story of how the GOP KNEW of the allegations, but did little, if anything, about them.  We touched on this, by the way, during my appearance this afternoon on Mike Feder's show on Sirius Satellite Radio.  It was a blast!


More GOP cover-up: Reynolds contradicts Hastert



From Roll Call we learn there are even more contradictions among Republican leaders about who knew what when. There is so much evidence of a GOP leadership cover-up here [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Point

Counter-point.  Topic: State of Denial.


State of the Obvious



Even though Bob Woodward has some pretty severe credibiity problems, it is never good when he writes a book unfavorable to you. After the New York Times managed to buy an early copy of "State of Denial" and reported on it on yesterday's front page, Bush aides frantically called Woodward and asked for copies, which he sent over. A squadron of White House aides then spent hours tearing through the book and doing quick research to try to undercut its more damaging elements. They settled on a strategy of disputing [...]


Tags: , , ,




|

Something To Think About

When even spinach is deadly...


WTF has happened to us?



It has been a long, hard week. Too many people have died both here and abroad. I am tired and depressed and my entire frame of mind was summed up by the morning DJ on WXPN. "I don't know how you parents do it anymore. If anyone had told me twenty years ago that going to school and eating spinach would be fatal I would have asked them what they were smoking." She's right you know. Our world [...]





|

Simply Scathing

Dorgan takes to the floor with some strong words about the Bush Administration, 9/11 and the War in Iraq.


Senator Dorgan goes on the offensive against Bush’s attacks



Senator Byron Dorgan (D-ND) took to the floor today to deliver a scathing indictment of the Bush administration. From the August 6th PDB to the bogus intelligence given to us by Curveball — an alcoholic whose assertions turned out to be 100% false and whom we based our entire case for war on — Dorgan [...]


Tags: , , ,



|

Taken To The Ulimate

When I heard a good conservative friend use the term "King George" recently, he did it with a chuckle. Ran into him yesterday and he used it, again.  This time there was no chuckle.


Long Live King George



Something billydoom asked in one of the threads below got me to musing how close the country is to living an imperial presidency. We may already be there; alternatively, the final confrontation may be just around the corner. Either way, there is no question that if we keep to the current path we are heading for a system of government in which King George holds fully all reins of the government. A [...]


Tags: ,



|

Foley Is Finished

It's the other huge story of the day.  And it's not just the fact that Representative Foley was sending emails to a young former male page; soon came word of some very explicit instant messages, too.  And, even more incredibly, the fact that Republican leadership KNEW of the reports.  And did nothing.


C&L with the ABC News report on Foley



Did the GOP not learn anything from the massive Vatican cover up with pedophilia? Sweeping this under the rug and hoping it goes away is not a strategy. Helping a pedophile and sexual predator is not a positive value. Choosing to prop up a pedophile and predator for campaign purposes tells me this crowd, who seems to have known about the Foley abuses for a long time, tells me that the GOP will say and [...]



UPDATE:  Late into the night, they were fighting over Foley in Congress -


Boehner blocks Pelosi’s investigation resolution: Surprise!



 Boehner objects because he hasn’t seen the resolution. Hmmm. Might it be because your hands are a bit filthy  regarding the Foley Sex scandal cover-up? Video-WMP QT-later The clerk reads the resolution calling for an ethics investigation into Foley - Republicans boo Nancy when she asks for a recorded vote. With a huge sex scandal brewing–they boo Nancy. I [...]




Tags: , ,



|

Denial

At the highest levels.  The new Bob Woodward book has been the subject of lengthy discussions and debates on the cable newsers this morning.  I've been working on a fresh pot of coffee and doing some research for a radio interview this afternoon.  I think it's no secret that Woodward's book has caught the Bush Administration a bit off-guard, even though it's been highly-anticipated. They rushed to get four advance copies yesterday.  And the publisher pushed up the official  release date by two days, because of all the publicity.  The book should be in the stores TODAY, rather than Monday.  IN the meantime -


JUST RELEASED: Woodward's Sunday Washington Post A1 Story



Tomorrow's Washington Post article by Bob Woodward is out here. Initial thoughts - it is as blockbuster as it should be. That Woodward is the one doing it will, I hope, be an irrelevant point. The major media have got to be able to start saying things like this [...]


Tags: , , ,



|

Defense Dollars

The numbers are unbelievable.  The really sad thing is - they'll likely need even more.


Record Defense Budget of $448 Billion Passed



The United States continued a long tradition of squandering an unbelievable fortune on its military-defense establishment today, passing a record $448 billion Pentagon budget with an extra $70 billion for the great successes of Iraq and Afghanistan.  Liberals are not automatically pacifists. Only the most naïve charlatan would put faith in the goodness of man, so defense and deterrence is of course necessary. Currently the Unites States is threatened by no one except for [...]


Tags: , , ,



|

Torture Tribulations

Perhaps all the writing and blogging and worrying about the new Torture Bill isn't needed.


How long before...



How long before the torture bill the Senate passed yesterday is challenged in court? "Days." And even those who voted for it don't seem too keen on its chances [...]


Tags:



|

Family Finances

We've asked the question before, but it deserves some thought. Again.  How's your bank account?  Had a pay raise lately? Better off today than five years ago?


When Dems slam Republicans for raising taxes



At this point, the administration's happy talk not withstanding, it's fair to say this economy isn't doing the middle class any favors. An American Progress report released yesterday shows that the "typical double-income family in the United States is worse off financially than ever," Reuters reports. "Middle-class families are struggling to pay for a home, health [...]


Tags: , ,


Ads by AdGenta.com



|

Friday, September 29, 2006

Iran's Nuke Program

Not working well.


More Intel Leaks: Iran Experiencing Technical Difficulties with Nuclear Program



In fact, if you can believe this story by David Ignatius, buried on page A21 of today's Washington Post, Iran is having lots of trouble just getting their centrifuges to work right, much less make highly enriched, "bomb grade" uranium: Intelligence analysts believe that Iran is encountering technical difficulties in mastering the complex process of [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Words of Fear

William Rivers Pitt pens an extraordinary essay today.


In Case I Disappear



I have been told a thousand times at least, in the years I have spent reporting on the astonishing and repugnant abuses, lies and failures of the Bush administration, to watch my back. "Be careful," people always tell me. "These people are capable of anything. Stay off small planes, make sure you [...]


Tags:



|

The Abramoff Scandal

The hits just keep on comin'.


More revelations from...



More revelations from the new Congressional report on Abramoff's White House doings. Ralph Reed to Jack Abramoff: "talked to rove about this and i think i killed it." And, boy, is Ken Mehlman in [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Reporting on Iraq

With Bob Woodward's new book creating all the fuss about what's really happening in Iraq, some bloggers are noting that he's not the only one speaking out.  But, those reporters willing to do so are few and far between.


George W. Bush Took Bin Laden's Bait



...Unfortunately, there's only the valiant Michael Ware from CNN, and Richard Engel from NBC, among a very few others (if any), who can't really cover anything because it's become too dangerous. So what does the corporate media do? They don't cover the Iraq war at all. So, no matter what you think about Chris Matthews, he's one of the people, besides today's Edward R. Murrow, Keith Olbermann, who dares to confront the chaos. As for the Anbar province, Richard Engel says it's now called Jihadistan.  I can hardly wait to hear what Bob Woodward has [...]


Tags: , , , ,



|

Coded Meaning

Maybe that Bush "comma" comment has real meaning.  To some.


Did Bush Blow His Dog Whistle?



In a recent CNN interview, President Bush suggested history would judge the Iraq war as "just a comma." He repeated the statement today in Alabama. While it seems an odd thing to say, a Political Wire reader suggests it's designed to speak to the religious right while [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Weekend Entertainment

I'm not a really big movie person.  In fact, I have two NetFlix DVD's sitting at the house.  They've been there for a month. I think we need to watch one of them this weekend, so I can get THIS sent to me next.


Great Music Film - Festival Express



I watched one of, and perhaps the, best music films I have ever seen tonight.  Festival Express...In the summer of 1970, a chartered train crossed Canada carrying some of the world's greatest rock bands. The Grateful Dead, Janis Joplin, The Band, Buddy Guy, The Flying Burrito Brothers, Delaney & Bonnie & Friends, Ian & Sylvia and others traveled, partied and played great music together for five days, stopping in [...]



Also on tap this weekend - (and don't you dare laugh!)


Big Dam Bridge Grand Opening



People from 19 states and three nations are coming to Little Rock and North Little Rock this weekend to celebrate the opening of the Big Dam Bridge [...]




Tags: , , ,


Tags:



|

Sad. Just So Sad.

I've been afraid this would happen.  Again.


National Guardsmen Shoot Up a Family Gathering at the Border



It was bound to happen; the chickens will come home to roost. Recently three National Guardsmen shoot up a family carne asada (barbeque) while on a "beer-fueled" joy ride near Eagle Pass, TX.  The last time the US stationed troops along the Rio Grande, a Marine shot and killed a Texas teenager tending to his [...]


Tags: ,



|

Today in Iraq

As usual, Juan Cole has a terse and terrifying summary of what's happening in Iraq.


100 Dead in Iraq on Thursday; Including 60 Bodies...



Reuters reports almost 40 persons killed in political violence as a result of Iraq's civil war on Thursday. Guerrillas set off several bomb attacks and fired mortars inside Baghdad, accounting for a number of the deaths.  In addition, Police found 60 bodies in various parts of Baghdad, showing signs of torture. They were victims of Sunni-Shiite sectarian reprisal killings. The inability of the current "Forward Together" campaign by the US and Iraqi militaries in Baghdad to deter this widespread murder and lawlessness suggests that the problem is [...]


Tags: , , , , ,



|

A New Video

Just in time for the weekend.


Al Qaeda Deputy Al-Zawahri Calls Bush "Lying Failure" In New Video...



Al Qaeda deputy leader Ayman al-Zawahri called  President Bush a "lying failure" for saying progress had been made in the war on terrorism, according to a video posted on the [...]


Tags: ,



|

Congressional Resignation

He really didn't have many options.


Icky Emailer Quits Congress



Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL) just resigned from Congress, ABC reports. Apparently, in addition to his not-quite-gross-but-certainly-inappropriate emails revealed yesterday, ABC had obtained "excerpts of instant messages provided by former pages who said the congressman, under the AOL Instant Messenger screen [...]



BREAKING NEWS: Foley Resigns, GOP congressman caught in creepy email exchange with underage page



Holy crap. This was a safe Republican seat. We just got one step closer to taking back the House.  Oh, and how's this for creepy: [...]




Tags:



|

The Clinton Incident

The political world is still talking about the Bill Clinton FOX News interview.  It's still being watched and analyzed. 


E. J. Dionne: Why Bill Clinton Pushed Back



Bill Clinton's eruption on "Fox News Sunday" last weekend over questions about his administration's handling of terrorism was a long time coming and has political implications that go beyond this fall's elections.  By choosing to intervene in the terror debate in a way that no one could [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Bush Poll

Headed into the weekend, Raw Story has the new Rasmussen Poll numbers.  George W. slipped a couple of notches.


Tags: ,


|

Caught on Camera

Politicians never learn.  Okay, a few of them realize when a camera is pointed them.  Others just don't get it.


Another Day, Another YouTube Moment



It's not quite Macaca-gate, but YouTube has struck again. Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue (R) flashed his temper at a local CBS reporter 9/26 and cameras were rolling -- specifically those operated by LG Mark Taylor's (D) staff.  The footage shows an irritated Perdue telling reporter Wendy Saltzman that she "might want to think about [...]


Tags: ,



|

Friday Follies - 9/29/06

Take a break. It's Friday, after all!  You deserve it.  You really do. 


Video- You may not have known this, but…



You may not have known it, but pretty much everything ever is Bill Clinton’s fault [...]


Tags:



|

The Torture Bill

This is, perhaps, one of the most frightening headlines I've read -


'It's not clear that most of the members understand what they've done'



As you've no doubt heard by now, the Senate passed the Bush-McCain Torture Bill yesterday. The final vote was 65 to 34, with 12 Dems breaking ranks to support the legislation. (Tim Grieve refers to them as the Torture 12, which, given the circumstances, seems more than fair.) I'll spare you another rant about just what [...]



And this op-ed piece pretty well sums it all up -


R.I.P. Magna Carta (1215-2006)



Molly Ivins: With a smug stroke of his pen, President Bush is set to wipe out a safeguard against illegal imprisonment that has endured as a cornerstone of legal justice since the Magna Carta [...]



The bottom line? -


Oh Say Can You See



This picture is from a torture musem in the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh. It's a device that was used by the Khmer Rouge, perpetrators of one of the great genocides of modern times. In the nightmare on earth known as Cambodia, it was called a waterboard. But the U.S Congress voted on Thursday to change the [...]



Before you move on, one final thought -


Joe Heller no longer a satirist



Joseph Heller, Catch 22: What right did they have?” “Catch-22.” “What?” Yossarian froze in his tracks with fear and alarm and felt hiw while body begin to tingle. “What did you say?” “Catch-22,” the old woman repeated, rocking her head up and down. “Catch-22. Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can’t stop [...]




Tags:



|

What's Happening in Washington?

Lots.  And the Arkansas Times blog has an interesting take on a couple of events of note.


And in Washington



By now you know the Senate has passed Bush's terrorism bill, eroding still more of the sorts of liberties leaders back to George Washington held dear. Sen. Pryor voted for the bill. Sen. Lincoln, bless her, voted no, despite chop-licking Repubs ready to drag out the vilest of charges against anyone who dares stand up for our heritage of fairness and justice.  Bush needed some bullboy patriotism to wave like a bloody shirt. Because still more juicy stuff is leaking out about crooked Jack Abramoff's access to [...]


Tags: , , , ,



|

The Woodward Book

We gave you a bit of advance word on "State of Denial" yesterday, but the New York Times has MUCH more today.  They got an advance copy and walked readers through some key material this morning.  Read on.


New Woodward Book Says Bush Ignored Urgent Warning on Iraq



“State of Denial,” by Bob Woodward, the Washington Post reporter and author, describes a White House riven by dysfunction and division over the war [...]



UPDATE:  Another tidbit just popped up -


Laura Bush And Fmr. WH Chief Of Staff Card Urged The President To Replace Rumsfeld...



Former White House chief of staff Andrew Card on two occasions tried and failed to persuade President Bush to fire Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, according to a new book by Bob Woodward that depicts senior officials of the Bush administration as unable to face [...]




Tags: ,


Ads by AdGenta.com



|

Thursday, September 28, 2006

They Really Want Us Out

Out of their country.  Out of their lives.  Gone. For good.


Poll Says Iraqis Back Attacks On U.S. Forces



File this in your "uh, oh, Tony Snow, you better get a quick spin on this" department [:...]


Tags: , , ,



|

New Numbers

The latest poll -


Bush Approval Improves But Democrats Maintain Lead



A new Reuters/Zogby poll shows President Bush's approval rating rising to 42%, up three points in the last two weeks.   However, in the generic congressional race, Democrats remain in the lead by [...]


Tags:



|

Rules Are Made To Be Broken

Apparently.  If you watch Washington, you'll know that.


Well, Here’s a Question…



Article I, Section 9, Clause 2 of the United States Constitution states as follows:  The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it. It expressly forbids suspension of the writ of habeas corpus except under very specific and highly limited circumstances – and as [...]


Tags: ,



|

Do-Nothing Administration

We could have gotten him.  We SHOULD have gotten him.


CIA Interview: We Had bin Laden CORNERED-Washington REFUSED TO HELP



2 CIA officials tell us Washington -twice- declined to send the reinforcements they asked for when bin Laden was cornered in Afghanistan in 2001. By the time of the 2nd request by the CIA for troops, the special ops force could hear Osama on radio asking his followers for forgiveness for leading [...]


Tags: , ,



|

We Sure Know How To Pick 'Em

Scapegoat, indeed.


Prime Minister Nuri Kamal 'Scapegoat' al-Maliki



Last week, senior American officials leaked word to the New York Times that they're no longer confident that Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki has what it takes to hold the country together. Patience, the NYT reported, is "wearing thin." A week later, U.S. officials are still getting the word out. Senior U.S. military commanders are questioning [...]


Tags: ,



|

Have We Done Anything Right in Iraq?

I'm sure there are some stellar examples.  Of something. Somewhere.  I'd be more than happy to mention them.  Or, you can drop some notes in the comments for everyone to read.  However, it seems most reports mirror this one -


Iraq: More Graft and Incompetence



Front and center in the Washington Post: A $75 million project to build the largest police academy in Iraq has been so grossly mismanaged that the campus now poses health risks to recruits and might need to be partially demolished, U.S. investigators have found. The Baghdad Police College, hailed as crucial to U.S. efforts to prepare Iraqis to take control of the country's security, was so poorly constructed that feces and urine rained from the ceilings in student barracks. Floors heaved inches off the ground and cracked apart. Water dripped [...]


Tags: , ,



|

The Ethanol Quandry

Ethanol=good.  Ethanol=bad.  The arguments abound.  And, the debate continues.  I don't agree often with Rob up at the Say Anything blog, but he lives in the North (where ethanol is a HUGE issue) and makes some great points in a lengthy post this morning.  It's worth reading, since it's likely ALL of us will be juggling thoughts on this issue before much longer.


ND Ag. Commissioner Proposes Ethanol Mandates



...Mandates are not good.  Period...I’ll outline a situation where these mandates will end up hurting consumers.  With all of these mandates, things will happen which will end up costing North Dakotans in the long run [...]


Tags: ,



|

The High Cost Of War

High.  And rising.


Iraq now costs $2,000,000,000 per week and it is increasing



This is an amazing number for a war that has nothing to do with the real war on terror. The Republican answer is everything is throw money at it (and your friends such as Halliburton) and hope it somehow works. Well guess what? It's not working and it is an expensive experiment for failed political ideas. When the GOP gained control of all branches of the federal government, this money was not available for programs such as Kyoto but somehow [...]


Tags: ,



|

So Many Simply Don't Listen

It's not like a lot of what we're hearing now about the Bush Administration and 9/11 is new.  Not at all.  And that's what makes the entire, ongoing, situation all the more baffling.  Via Mahablog


Finally



Earlier this week I cited an article by Michael Hirsh and Michael Isikoff, “What Went Wrong,” from Newsweek, May 27, 2002. The Hirsh-Isikoff and other news stories that appeared in late spring of 2002 revealed that the Bush Administration had received copious warnings about the September 11 attacks and had failed to act on them. [...]


Tags: , , , ,



|

Tivo Time

Set your DVR.  60 Minutes.  This Sunday.  There's some unbelievable material in the advance print piece on the link.


Woodward: Bush Misleading on Iraq



Veteran Washington reporter Bob Woodward said that the Bush administration has not told the truth regarding the level of violence, especially against U.S. troops, in Iraq. He also revealed key intelligence that predicts the insurgency will grow worse next [...]


Tags: , , ,


Ads by AdGenta.com



|

The "Torture Bill"

"Torture Bill".  That's been the unofficial name used by critics all along.  John Kerry pretty much bumped it up to "official" this morning.


John Kerry: ‘This Bill Permits Torture’



Yesterday the House rushed through Bush’s ‘torture bill’ and today as the Senate is in the midst of debate on the bill it is clear there is no stopping this travesty of justice. The N.Y. Times reports that “House Democrats were prevented from offering any amendments,” during their debate yesterday. Where is our Democracy? Under [...]


Tags: ,



 


|

NIE Follow-Up

The men and women in the White House press corps were making life kinda miserable for Tony Snow Wednesday.


White House NIE SnowJob



If you want to know see torture in action, all you had to do was watch the White House press gaggle this morning. Tony Snowjob was at his obfuscating best this morning, except for one thing. The press wouldn't let up [...]


Tags: , ,



|

War Crimes And Timelines

The TV guys were on a roll last night.  Cafferty tackled war crimes. Olbermann trumped everybody with a terrific timeline of "who knew what, when" on terrorism.


Cafferty: “What Are We Becoming?”



Cafferty struck a somber tone tonight after the House passed legislation that includes a war crimes immunity clause. He rightfully asks, "what are we becoming?" Cafferty: "President Bush is trying to pardon himself. Here’s the deal: Under the War Crimes Act, violations of the Geneva Conventions are felonies, in some cases [...]



Keith Olbermann takes a “look back” at Bush’s first months in office leading up to 9/11



Keith Olbermann responds to Bush’s non-response to Bill Clinton. He goes over his first months in office leading up to 9/11.  It’s not a pretty picture.  Olbermann: "The political debate still raging over Mr. Clinton’s remarks in a Fox News interview Sunday has overshadowed the debate Mr. Clinton suggested the nation ought [...]



UPDATE: Give Cafferty a "two-fer" - He explained the big problem in the Middle East, too -


Cafferty Sounds Off On Bush’s Foreign Policy



Jack Cafferty went off script and off the meter against President Bush today. Wolf leads into the Cafferty File with an interview of Afghan President Hamid Karzai responding to Pervez Musharrafs accusations that he is turning a blind eye to terrorism and that Pakistan is much more secure than Afghanistan. [...]



UPDATE 2: Oh, yeah.  Let's give some credit to Chris Matthews, too -


Majority Leader Boehner suggests Saddam was a 9/11 accomplice



Confusion among the electorate about Iraq's non-existent role in 9/11, and Saddam Hussein's non-existent weapons of mass destruction, is disappointing, but we should be able to expect better from our House Majority Leader. We should, but we can't. On MSNBC's Hardball yesterday, Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio), Tom DeLay's replacement as the Republicans' leader in the House, [...]




Tags: , , , ,



|

If You Like Wal-Mart

You won't appreciate what's in this post, via Shakespeare's Sister blog.


Wolf in Sheep's Clothing



So, the big retailers got their way, and today, the first Chicago Wal-Mart opened on the west side..."CHICAGO -- Self-professed "shopaholic" Julie Edwards arrived at Chicago's first Wal-Mart store two hours before its grand opening Wednesday -- and she wasn't alone.  Lines snaked around the mega-retailer's West Side building long before [...]


Tags:



|

Nothing To Give

  It's quite sad, when you look at how we're utilizing our military might.


The REAL reason the White House won’t offer troops for Darfur



After the Rwandan genocide in 1994 occurred, some speculated that the reason why President Clinton’s Administration hadn’t termed it genocide was that if they had, they would be compelled to act through the United Nations to intervene in the tragedy. A decade later in 2004, the Bush Administration, led by then-Secretary of State Colin Powell [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Voters Have Questions

And concerns.  How did we let ourselves get into this precarious political position?


ZOGBY POLL: VOTERS QUESTION OUTCOME OF 2004 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION



Guest blogged by Michael Collins Part Two of a Two-Part Series (Part One published here, blogged here) Based on an article published by "SCOOP" Independent News Washington, DC At their lowest points of popularity, do you recall anyone who claimed that Presidents Carter and Nixon stole their elections or that they didn’t win fair [..]


Tags: ,



|

Dirty Politics

If this tactic works, I'll be left shaking my head in amazement.


Somtimes “cut and run” talking points backfire on Republicans…



A Republican attacks a Democrat’s position on Iraq and says that they just want to “cut and run.” We’ve heard this before. It’s the same old familiar story, right? Wrong. Here’s why. The Republican is Peter Roskam. He says American soldiers shouldn’t be allowed to come home from Iraq until they’ve made the country “secure.” And [...]


Tags: , ,



|

The Second NIE Report

Rep.Harman's keeping the pressure on.


Harman to Negroponte: Deliver the NIE Before November



Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA), ranking member on the House Intelligence Committee, has sent a letter to intelligence director John Negroponte demanding that he complete the second NIE on Iraq quickly, and release a declassified version before the elections in November. An excerpt: NIEs have been produced in as little as several weeks, as in the case [...]


Tags: ,



|

They Want Us Out

Striking numbers. 


New Polling show Iraqis favor immediate US withdrawal



New polls show we’ve made few friends in Iraq: A strong majority of Iraqis want U.S.-led military forces to immediately withdraw from the country, saying their swift departure would make Iraq more secure and decrease sectarian violence, according to new polls by the State Department and independent researchers. In Baghdad, for example, nearly three-quarters of residents polled [...]


Tags: , ,



|

The Clark Memo

The Carpetbagger Report has the memo from Richard Clark to Condoleezza Rice, urging the Bush Administration look seriously on al Qaeda.


Responding to Rice



Just to follow up briefly on yesterday's item, Condoleezza Rice "hammered" the Clinton administration this week, responding to the former president's Fox News interview by arguing that the Clinton White House had not fully prepared the Bush team for the terrorist threat, particularly that posed by al Qaeda. Raw Story responded with excerpts from a memo [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Kennedy on Diebold

Pretty powerful performance tonight on Hardball.  Robert F. Kennedy, JR.  Video already on BradBlog.


VIDEO - RFK Jr. on Diebold, Hacking Elections on MSNBC's HARDBALL Tonight!



UPDATED: Bobby Tears Diebold New One, Mentions BRAD BLOG…Complete Video Now Linked! [...]


Tags: , , ,



|

Street Talk

Life in Baghdad.  Any questions?


Hell in Iraq



"It is Not a Miserable Life. It is Worse Then Miserable" - A Doctor's Day in Baghdad By Dr. ANON Baghdad. "I have a big family. My eldest two are already dentists and both abroad. I have one daughter just married one month ago. so I am not yet a grandpa. Although I have perfect job satisfaction, Full Professor, with MRCP, FRCP and a couple more degrees from London and [...]


Tags: ,



|

Buried Deep In The NIE

There's a chilling quote that many have missed.


'Leftist' groups as a terrorist threat?



Glenn Greenwald read through the now-declassified summary (.pdf) of the National Intelligence Estimate and noticed something, at the very end, that a lot of us missed. From the document: "Anti-US and anti-globalization sentiment is on the rise and fueling other radical ideologies. This could prompt some leftist, nationalist, or separatist groups to adopt terrorist methods to [...]


Tags: ,


Ads by AdGenta.com



|

One More NIE Analysis

One can only imagine what we'd be writing, if we had the entire report.


National Intelligence Estimate on terrorism



The recently-declassified NIE titled "Trends in Global Terrorism: Implications for the United States", which was finalized nearly six months ago, is a devastating repudiation of virtually everything leading Executive and Defense Department leaders have told Americans about the war on terror. As I've written before, the most important thing to look for in this kind of analysis is trends. Events are different than [...]


Tags: , ,



|

I'm Not Liking This

Not one little bit.  Will anybody stand up to this bill and treat it for what it is?


Back Door Provision Gives Bush Wartime Presidential Powers



A little-noticed provision in President Bush's proposal for the treatment of suspected terrorists would for the first time legally endorse the fight against terrorism as equivalent to war, lawmakers and national security lawyers say. Critics of the provision, such as former CIA counsel [...]


Tags: ,


Ads by AdGenta.com



|

Digging A Deeper Hole

George Allen simply can't politically survive this onslaught.  You can't just "say" it didn't happen and expect voters to buy it.  Or can you?


Second source alleges George Allen involvement in racist hate crime



From Salon A former college football teammate of Sen. George Allen's has confirmed details of a controversial hunting trip in the early 1970s, during which Allen is alleged to have placed a severed deer head in a mailbox that he believed to be owned by a black family.... "We were sitting around drinking beer," Beam said in an interview Wednesday morning, recalling the conversation with [...]


Tags: ,



|

Edukashun Extraodinaire

Remember the old song, "Teach Your Children Well"?  We need to listen to it.  Today.


'A coming crisis in American citizenship'



The Intercollegiate Studies Institute launched a worthwhile project recently: it surveyed 14,000 students at 50 schools as part of the largest study ever done on college students' understanding of American democracy and political institutions. They didn't just pick any college, either; the ISI study picked 25 schools at random, and then oversampled among the most [...]


Tags: , ,



|

The Shifting Tide

I'm wondering.  Just wondering.  Along with Andrew Sullivan.


Data from Denver



An open seat, formerly Republican, previously considered close. A new poll shows a massive Democratic lead. The Dem has a 40 percent lead among self-described moderates. A fluke? Or a harbinger of an awakening?[...]


Tags: ,



|

Fun With Franken

Al Franken was on his game last night on Hardball.


Franken Has Fun With Tony Blankley



Tony was just asking for it.  He makes this ridiculous argument to try and downplay the significance of the NIE and Matthews nails him on it before Franken even gets a shot. Tony says we shouldn’t expect to see results because we’re not "at the end of the war" and argues it’s only natural to [...]


Tags: , , ,



|

Take A Break

You know you need one.


Lunch Hour Veg



Today on the veg...Play time! Toy commercials from the 70's [...]


Tags:



|

Tweaking the Detainee Bill

And not in a good way.


A Bad Detainee Bill Gets Worse



Fearful of being labeled "soft on terror," Senate Democrats continue to be timid in their opposition to the president's plan to give detainees sham trials before military tribunals. They need to wake up. Recent Republican changes in the bill endanger the rights of everyone.  The current definition of "enemy combatant," to whom the law would apply, broadens its [...]


Tags:




|

Tweaking the Detainee Bill

And not in a good way.


A Bad Detainee Bill Gets Worse



Fearful of being labeled "soft on terror," Senate Democrats continue to be timid in their opposition to the president's plan to give detainees sham trials before military tribunals. They need to wake up. Recent Republican changes in the bill endanger the rights of everyone.  The current definition of "enemy combatant," to whom the law would apply, broadens its [...]


Tags:




|

Analyzing the NIE

Possibly the best job of dissecting the document I've found.  No surprise, it's from JuanCole.  It's lengthy.  Grab a fresh cup of coffee and dig in.


Partially Declassified NIE Bush became indignant ...



Bush became indignant on Tuesday during his news conference with Afghan President Karzai over the leaking of passages from the National Intelligence Estimate on trends in terrorism to the press. He said that in response he was going to have some of its key judgments declassified.  I want to make 4 basic points about this controversy, and also [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Mid-Week Wanderings

Looks like Wednesday is going to be a bit slower than Tuesday, news-wise.  It was interesting early this morning to watch the pundits on the cable news shows bark back and forth at each other, claiming "their" side was supported by the NIE report that was partially released yesterday.  I'm sure we'll dig up some clips as the day progresses.  In the meantime, Booman Tribune is making some interesting points about a Texas story that you likely haven't heard much about.


Culture War? No, It's a War on Culture



Highly respected art teacher takes her kids on an approved trip to the Dallas Museum of Art. Principal urged her to take the kids. Parents signed consent forms for all the kids who went. Some kids report seeing a (gasp) nude sculpture at an art museum. So what happens to the teacher? I'll give you three guesses: [...]


Tags: , ,


Ads by AdGenta.com



|

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Your Health Matters

It really does.  But, for many, it's a challenge to deal with.


"Health insurance costs rise 7.7%, twice the rate of inflation"



"The rising gap between premium growth and wages is particularly startling when one takes a longer look back. Since 2000, health insurance premiums have gone up 78%; wages [...]


Tags: ,



|

They Thought It Would Be Easy

So easy.


Revisiting Rumsfeld



Remember when we were told that the war in Iraq would be an in-and-out job, over before we knew it ("It could last six days, six weeks. I doubt six months"), and that post-war reconstruction would be largely funded by the newly liberated country's oil revenues? It hasn't worked out that way.  "In the latest sign of pressure on troop strength from violence in Iraq, the Pentagon said Monday that it has extended the combat tour of 4,000 U.S. soldiers, the second time in [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Cafferty on Torture And The NIE

Jack Cafferty. Great on his own, but give him some emails and he takes it  up a notch.


Torture: a Family Value



Cafferty talked about some of the outrage over the Detainee and torture bill today and then took some really good emails about the new Republican torture standard. Everyone knows that BushCo. wants this passed ASAP for election time.  Big props to the Faithful Democrats for tackling this issue today.  It would be wonderful to see Barack [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Still Fighting Them Over There

How's it going today in Iraq?


Iraqi Sunni Leader Resigns, 21 Killed In Series Of Bomb Explosions...



A Sunni Arab leading a parliamentary committee reviewing new legislation resigned his post on Tuesday to protest a Shiite-sponsored federalism bill that he said would lead to further political instability and bloodshed.  A series of bomb explosions killed at least 21 people and wounded dozens in and around Baghdad on Tuesday, while police found the bodies of 19 men [...]


Tags: , , ,



|

Hurricanes and Global Warming

Absolutely unbelievable.


White House Said to Bar Hurricane Report



The Bush administration has blocked release of a report that suggests global warming is contributing to the frequency and strength of hurricanes, the journal Nature reported Tuesday. The possibility that warming conditions may cause storms to become stronger has generated debate among climate and we [...]


Tags: ,



|

Olbermann's "Special Comments"

Remember what I said about Keith Olbermann's "special comments" and the impact they have on viewership? Yup, take a look at last night's numbers.


Monday’s Numbers…



Countdown flat out beat Paula Zahn Now in both the P2+ and P 25-54 categories, coming in 2nd for the hour behind O’Reilly. I’m not sure but I think it may be the highest P2 number the show has turned in this year on a non-breaking news day. Cable News Ratings for September 25, 2006 [...]


Tags: , , ,



|

Did Bush Read The NIE?

I'm not sure I understand why he was so quick to release the April NIE, given the fact that it supports critics and does little to help his own talking points.  Strange.


Declassified NIE Released, Undercutting Bush's Argument



Bush went ahead and released a declassified version of the terrorism NIE today, and if this is the politically acceptable version of the NIE, I wonder how bad the hidden intelligence report on Iraq is that Jane Harman wants out. This one pretty well undercuts the GOP message for the midterms, and makes it hard for Bush to argue that [...]



In the interest of fairness, here's how the Conservative bloggers see the NIE -


NIE Report Declassified



You can read it here.  It’s pretty short, and very readable, and certainly doesn’t seem to back up the doom and gloom claims we heard from Democrats and the media a few days ago. Here are some excerpts I found interesting: [...]




Tags: , , , ,



|

Did Condi Really Think She'd Get Away With Telling This Lie?

Obviously, she did.  The bloggers have done their collective homework.  It was a baldfaced lie.  I don't see any way around it.


2001 memo to Condi Contradicts Statements About Clinton, Pakistan



Raw Story reports that a memo received by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice “shortly after becoming National Security Advisor in 2001 directly contradicts statements she made to reporters yesterday.” “We were not left a comprehensive strategy to fight al Qaeda,” Rice told a reporter for the New York Post on Monday. “Big pieces were missing,” Rice [...]


Tags: , ,


Ads by AdGenta.com



|

Declassified NIE

It's out.  We'll be updating as folks get a chance to digest it.  CNN just popped this into my email, though -



-- Key conclusions of a report assessing the state of global terrorism are released after President Bush ordered its declassification. One assessment is Iraq is shaping a new generation of terror leaders.



Sounds pretty much in line with what we heard from the leaked information, doesn't it?


UPDATE:  Read it yourself.


Get Your NIE Here


And here's what strikes us as the key paragraph:


• The Iraq conflict has become the cause celebre for jihadists, breeding resentment of US involvement in the Muslim world and cultivating the global jihadist movement. Should jihadists leaving Iraq perceive and be perceived, to have failed, we judge fewer fighters will be inspired on [...]

Tags:


|

MSNBC Takes on FOX News

Again.  Olbermann consistently goes after the competition. Now, it's spreading.


FOX News Offers Sex Advice To College Students...



Is this video clip really on Fox News? Yep, right here on the homepage in the "FNC iMag" lifestyle video section, and its a video segment labelled "Campus Hookups." And in this segment, FNC "relationship expert" Marie Forleo offers advice incoming college coeds about dating and sex, including but not limited to go out and meet people in bars, try not to sleep with your professors, and go ahead and have a lot of sex. Seriously.  This video -- which MSNBC has been airing and debating all day [...]


Tags: , ,




|

Not. Gonna. Happen.

The Bolton nomination goes nowhere.


Bolton nomination “really, really dead.”



Steve Clemons says the “last pre-election loophole through which John Bolton’s confirmation might have snuck through the Senate Foreign Relations Committee was at 2:15 this afternoon at a previously called ‘business meeting’ of the Committee. That meeting has been cancelled — and with it even the dimmest chance of John Bolton being confirmed as US [...]



Strike Two -


AP: Warrantless Wiretapping Bill Unlikely To Pass



From the AP: Congress is unlikely to approve a bill giving President Bush's warrantless wiretapping program legal status and new restrictions before the November midterm elections, dealing a significant blow to one of the White House's top wartime priorities. House [...]




Tags: ,


Tags: ,



|

As We Said...

No lack of activity in Washington today!


BREAKING EXCLUSIVE: BOXER, DODD TO INTRODUCE EMERGENCY PAPER BALLOT LEGISLATION IN SENATE TODAY!


UPDATE:  They did it -



Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT) introduced emergency legislation to amend the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) this morning to offer funding to states and counties who make 'contingency paper ballots' available to voters to be used at the voter's option instead of electronic voting systems. The so-called ...



Tags: ,


|

How Declassified is "Declassified"?

It IS somewhat of a surprising turnaround.


Here comes NIE declassification — sort of



Just yesterday, the White House heard the bipartisan calls for declassifying the National Intelligence Estimate, and had a firm response: no. White House officials said Monday that making the information public would only help terrorists gain a better understanding of how much the United States knows of their operations. "What we don't want to do is tell [...]


Tags: , ,




|

Rice vs Clinton

Apparently, Bill Clinton really did hit a nerve during his Fox News tirade this past weekend. 


Condi Rice and George Bush did NOTHING after the CIA warned them that Bin Laden was determined to strike in the US



Condi Rice blew a gasket this morning, angrily proclaiming that she and George Bush did lots of stuff before September 11 to stop Bin Laden. Putting aside the fact that a detailed Washington Post analysis says she and he most certainly did not, let's just compare one event in the Clinton and the Bush administrations to see how well [...]



Oh, my.  Another smackdown.


The 9-11 Commission Report refutes Rice's Claims



Tags: , ,



|

Playing Politics

There's much happening in Washington today.  Hot off the AP:



WASHINGTON (AP) Republican-controlled House rejects Democratic motion for a rare closed session to discuss intelligence on terrorism.



That back-and-forth happened right after THIS:


Bush Orders NIE 'Key Judgments' Declassified



We've been here before.  In October 2002, parts of the NIE were declassified. Where did it get us? They kept out the caveats [...]



And, because Democrats got wind of a SECOND classified report on Iraq:


Conyers to Force Vote on Secret Iraq Reports



Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) is introducing a measure that would force a House vote on whether or not to require the Bush administration to release controversial secret reports by the intelligence community on Iraq and terrorism. The measure would call [...]




Tags: ,



|

Jsut A Bit Angry

Wouldn't you say?  via Andrew Sullivan


YouTube of the Day



If I have any message for the students of today, it is this: you cannot trust the word of this president or anyone in this administration. They have either lied or told you things that turned out not to be [...]


Tags:



|

The "Comma Comment"

Bush speaks.  Cafferty responds.


Taking Issue with “Just a Comma”



Jack Cafferty picked up on the "just a comma" comment that George Bush made on Sunday.  And he has some…issues with the phrasing. To say the least. Crooks and Liars has the video [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Olbermann: Taking Another Shot

I have to give the guy credit.  He's not backing down.  And he does some excellent writing.  The full transcript is on the link, but you really should watch the video to get the full impact.


Olbermann’s Special Comment: Are YOURS the actions of a true American?



Keith pulled no punches and launched another smack down on Bush and FOX News… "And finally tonight, a Special Comment about President Clinton’s interview. The headlines about them are, of course, entirely wrong. It is not essential that a past President, bullied and sandbagged by a monkey posing as a newscaster, [...]



We'll make it easy to watch -




Tags: , , ,



|

They Got Him

The strange thing is - they pretty much hid the entire escape story.


British Forces Kill Leading Terrorist...



British forces shot and killed a leading al-Qaida terrorist Monday more than a year after he embarrassed the U.S. military by making an unprecedented escape from a maximum security military prison in Afghanistan, officials said. Omar al-Farouq was gunned down after he opened fire on British forces during a raid on his home in [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Monday, September 25, 2006

Just Release The Darn Thing!

Then, we can all read what's in it.


White House Claims The NIE Doesn’t Show The ‘War in Iraq Has Made Terrorism Worse’



In April, the nation’s spy agencies produced a National Intelligence Estimate. Here’s the New York Times report: A stark assessment of terrorism trends by American intelligence agencies has found that the American invasion and occupation of Iraq has helped spawn a new generation of Islamic radicalism and that the overall terrorist threat has grown since the [...]


Tags: , , ,



|

Spending Binge

Oh, look at the new numbers.  This is fiscal responsibility?


The Spending Binge Goes On



The GOP are ramping up government spending by a whopping 9 percent in 2006 - despite pledges by Bush of fiscal responsibility. Well, we know what his word is worth. Now they're up to it again for 2007. Money quote [...]


Tags: ,



|

Newsweek's New Editor

This could get interesting, depending on how much the new guy pushes his personal political feelings into Newsweek's content.


Incoming 'Newsweek' Editor Declares Gore Winner In 2000; Questions Bush's Legitimacy



The incoming top editor of "Newsweek" magazine, Jon Meacham, cast aspersions on the legitimacy of President Bush on the same "Imus in the Morning" broadcast I referenced earlier. Meacham conjured up memories of the 2000 election, asserting that "Al Gore was elected by the American people, but not allowed to serve." Additionally, Meacham gave credence to the left wing blogosphere and [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Abramoff And Hall

You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours.


For Abramoff, Lawmaker Slandered Teen Sex Slave



A Texas congressman is denying charges he slandered a foreign sex slave at the behest of Jack Abramoff. But documents obtained by TPMmuckraker contradict the Republican's claims. In November of 1997, Rep. Ralph Hall (R-TX) publicly questioned the credibility of [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Iraqi Soldiers Are A Problem

Let's toss in one more little tale from the Streets of Baghdad, shall we?


"Iraqi soldiers hinder U.S. efforts to combat militias and tame Baghdad streets"



While senior US commanders praise Iraqi troop performance, US soldiers say Iraqi troop performance is worst they have seen, which "raises doubts whether the Iraqis can maintain order once the security operation is over and [...]


Tags: ,



|

Free Enterprise in Iraq

Yessiree.  We should be so proud.  It's free enterprise.  At its finest.


Baghdad Journal: As Iraqi Lights Flicker, ‘Generator Man’ Feels Heat



When the power goes out in Baghdad, Iraqis blame the generator man, probably the most vilified figure after Saddam Hussein [...]


Tags: ,


Ads by AdGenta.com.



|

It Just Gets Worse

Day after day.  The reports worsen.


Apparently "support" for troops doesn't include adequate supplies or training



I must be stupid. That's clearly the only explanation. I must be stupid, because I simply cannot understand how something can be The Most Important Thing On Earth but not be worth providing adequate resources for. I wish I could comprehend it, but I can't.  President Bush keeps telling us the Iraq is the key to [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Global Warming

The latest. From today.


Earth’s Temperature Hottest in 12,000 Years



Even scarier than the 12,000 figure: Earth is within one degree Celsius of the maximum temperature of the past million [...]


Tags:



|

The Bush "Comma" Comment

Cafferty is on target.


Cafferty: “Sometimes Politicians Say Really Dumb Things”



Jack Cafferty just had some real choice words about Bush summing up Iraq as a "comma" during his interview with Wolf Blitzer. Jack hits the nail on the head when he puts the tally of lives, security and money on the cost of this "comma". I wonder how the families of [...]


Tags: , ,



|

Just Not Right

It really isn't.  This should not be happening. Not for THIS war.  There will be some angry families. They've been through this before.


US Army Extends Iraq Duty for 4,000



The Army is stretched so thin by the war in Iraq that it is again extending the combat tours of thousands of soldiers beyond the promised 12 months - the second such move since [...]


Tags: ,



|