Thursday, July 17, 2008

McDumb As Bush

Can we afford another president who thinks it's smart to be dumb?

Monday, July 14, 2008

Is it 'Satire' or just 'Incendiary'


If it is satire and you want to be fair, then do the same for McCain.

New Yorker Magazine’s 'Satire' Cover

Barack Obama's campaign lashed out Sunday at the editors of The New Yorker magazine for a cartoon cover that depicts the Democratic candidate and his wife as fist-bumping terrorists.

The magazine's editor described the cartoon, called "The Politics of Fear," as satire. The Obama campaign called it "tasteless and offensive."

The McCain campaign joined in piling on The New Yorker. "We completely agree with the Obama campaign that it's tasteless and offensive," said campaign spokesman Tucker Bounds.

When asked by a reporter about the cartoon Obama, shrugging incredulously, replied: “I have no response to that.”

Cover of July 21 issue of The New Yorker depicts Barack and Michelle Obama in extremist roles.


Sunday, July 13, 2008

Saturday, July 12, 2008

It Makes Sense...

The US government continues to deny the need to reduce global warming; reinstate habeas corpus; end the war in Iraq and respect the 4th Amendment of the Constitution etc, etc…

So why would anyone be shocked to find out that the
US Environmental Agency has lowered the value of a human life.

It sounds like a spot of gallows humour, but the numbers are no joke: the US environmental protection agency (EPA) has lowered the value of a human life by nearly $1m under George Bush's administration.

The EPA's estimate of the "value of a statistical life" was $6.9m as of this May - down from $7.8m five years ago - according to an Associated Press study released today […]

The less a life is worth to the government, the less the need for a regulation - such as the tighter restrictions on pollution that the EPA refused to impose today, effectively postponing any action on climate change until after Bush leaves office.


Thursday, July 10, 2008

FISA Capitulation

Rachel Maddow on Countdown while filling in for Keith Olbermann discussed the FISA legislation with George Washington University constitutional law professor Jonathan Turley.

Maddow: What do you think of the arguments for granting these companies retroactive immunity.

Turley: What the Democrats are doing with the Whitehouse is they’re trying to conceal a crime that is hiding in plain view, that everyone can see it. So the argument for it is quite simple. Nobody wants to have a confrontation over the fact that the President committed a felony not once but at least 30 times. That’s a very inconvenient right now in Washington.

Maddow: Senator Obama says he does not like this bill but he says heis supporting it as a compromise. Is iit a comprome?

Turley: I am completely astonished by Senator Obama’s position and obviously disappointed….this is not a compromise, it is a cave in….the 4th amendment is going to be eviscerated tomorrow.
See the complete interview

And the Capitulation is Complete

Senate Passes Eavesdropping Bill
Grants Immunity To Phone Companies That Listened In On Americans

Just under a third of the Senate, including Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, supported an amendment that would have stripped immunity from the bill. They were defeated on a 66-32 vote. Republican rival John McCain did not attend the vote. Obama ended up voting for the final bill, as did Specter. Feingold voted no.

Remember When the GOP Counted Flip-Flops?

John McCain -- 61 Flip-Flops and Counting

McCain argues that flip-flops are an example of a political leader who can't be trusted -- so he might as well drop out of the race.

Via Alternet: Writer Steve Benen has graciously compiled a comprehensive tally of John McCain's flip-flops on issues ranging from national security to energy. The following is Benen's list of 61 clear 180-degree switches by McCain on the biggest issues of the day.

National Security Policy

1. McCain thought Bush's warrantless wiretap program circumvented the law; now he believes the opposite.

2. McCain insisted that everyone, even "terrible killers," "the worst kind of scum of humanity," and detainees at Guantanamo Bay, "deserve to have some adjudication of their cases," even if that means "releasing some of them." McCain now believes the opposite.

3. He opposed indefinite detention of terrorist suspects. When the Supreme Court reached the same conclusion, he called it "one of the worst decisions in the history of this country."

4. In February, McCain reversed course on prohibiting waterboarding.

5. McCain favored closing the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay before he was against it.

6. When Barack Obama talked about going after terrorists in Pakistani mountains with Predators, McCain criticized him for it. He's since come to the opposite conclusion.

Foreign Policy

7. McCain was for kicking Russia out of the G8 before he was against it.

8. McCain supported moving "toward normalization of relations" with Cuba. Now he believes the opposite.

9. McCain believed the United States should engage in diplomacy with Hamas. Now he believes the opposite.

10. McCain believed the United States should engage in diplomacy with Syria. Now he believes the opposite.

11. McCain is both for and against a "rogue state rollback" as a focus of his foreign policy vision.

12. McCain used to champion the Law of the Sea convention, even volunteering to testify on the treaty's behalf before a Senate committee. Now he opposes it.

13. McCain was against divestment from South Africa before he was for it.
Military Policy

14. McCain recently claimed that he was the "greatest critic" of Rumsfeld's failed Iraq policy. In December 2003, McCain praised the same strategy as "a mission accomplished." In March 2004, he said, "I'm confident we're on the right course." In December 2005, he said, "Overall, I think a year from now, we will have made a fair amount of progress if we stay the course."

15. McCain has changed his mind about a long-term U.S. military presence in Iraq on multiple occasions, concluding, on multiple occasions, that a Korea-like presence is both a good idea and a bad idea.

16. McCain said before the war in Iraq, "We will win this conflict. We will win it easily." Four years later, McCain said he knew all along that the war in Iraq war was "probably going to be long and hard and tough."

17. McCain has repeatedly said it's a dangerous mistake to tell the "enemy" when U.S. troops would be out of Iraq. In May, McCain announced that most American troops would be home from Iraq by 2013.

18. McCain was against expanding the GI Bill before he was for it.

Domestic Policy, 19-30;

Economic Policy, 31-38;

Energy Policy, 39-43;

Immigration Policy, 43-46;

Judicial Policy and the Rule of Law, 47-49;

Campaign, Ethics, and Lobbying Reform, 50-52;

Politics and Associations, 53-61.

Read the complete list HERE.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Quintessential Oxymoron

Pentagon to build 'safer' cluster bombs

Bush at Work


Bush sorry over Berlusconi Insult – 7/8/08 at G8 Summit

The White House has apologized to Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi for a briefing describing him as a political "amateur" who is "hated by many".

The "insulting" biography was included in a press kit distributed to reporters travelling with President George W Bush to a meeting of world leaders in Japan.

He was "one of the most controversial leaders" of a country "known for governmental corruption and vice".

Only last month, Mr Bush visited his old ally, calling him a "good friend".

The four-page description of Mr Berlusconi had been taken from the Encyclopedia of World Biography.

Berlusconi has been a staunch supporter of Bush's war in Iraq

Via Reuters

Bush summons Canadian leader with a "Yo Harper!" - 7/7/08 at G8 Summit

At a G8 summit in 2006, Bush landed ally Tony Blair in some trouble by calling out "Yo Blair!"

McCain Style Democracy = Bush Style Democracy

John McCain kicks librarian out of town hall event

On orders from Senator John McCain's security detail, Denver police escorted a 61-year-old woman away who was waiting in line to attend a so-called town hall meeting with McCain that was billed as open to the public.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

A Broken System

The Real Problem with Voter I.D. Legislation is that the System is Broken

According to Firedoglake: It’s a Catch-22.

Imagine being stuck in a Kafkaesque nightmare like the one my pal Eric Ward faces:

I’m African-American and my family moved to California almost a hundred years ago after a lynching took place outside their hometown in Kentucky.

I’m also undocumented, or in the current anti-immigrant vernacular, “illegal.” I don’t have the necessary documents to prove my identity. Therefore, within four years, I won’t be able to vote, have access to social services, or receive state identification to travel.

It's not just African Americans who are being swept up in this hysteria, and it isn't just this misbegotten measure that is victimizing ordinary American citizens. You can also include Native Americans and senior citizens among those whose status as voting citizens is now considered dubious.

This is happening right now to my 93year old mother-in-law. She moved from Chicago, IL to Seattle, WA to be closer to her daughter. She let her driver’s license expire since she decided to stop driving. Now she is trying to get a state I.D. and is having difficulty. This is because the birth date on her birth certificate is different than the birth date listed on her social security card, her expired driver’s license and her Medicare card.

It’s enough to make your head spin!!!

The Real Enemy is "Absurdity"

Radio talk show host Ed Schultz has taken all he can take and he can’t takes no more. On Anderson Cooper 360 yesterday, he blew up when PNACer Cliff May, Director of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, suggested that the left wants us to lose in Iraq as a way to teach the US a lesson on the evils of imperialism.

MAY: Yeah, I think also on some of the left wing blogs, Obama is taking some hits. But this does move him to the center and look, I want to put the…I’m not a big fan of his, but I’m going to put the best spin on it, which is that he understands the situation…fairly…well. Certainly better than the Daily Kos does and some of those on the left who would like to see America defeated in Iraq as a demonstration exercise that US power can never, never be used for good.

SCHULTZ: That I am…whoa, whoa! That is absolutely outrageous! That is outrageous for you to say people on the left want to lose in Iraq. I’m not going to sit here and listen to that. This is the Fourth of July, we are Americans, we don’t believe in fighting in Iraq the way we are doing. We are depleting our resources. That’s ridiculous. That’s absolutely ridiculous.

I totally agree with the analysis below. Democrats, Liberals, Progressives…however the left is defined… we need to stop arguing against absurd statements. We need to set the frame, not argue against the right-wing frame. It is time for us to set the tone:

Now this kind of cheap shot with no foundation infuriates me as much as it does Schultz, and his anger is certainly understandable and justified. But this is where I have to split from Big Ed and suggest that we on the left have to get a whole lot smarter about these kind of appearances. The key to these kind of exchanges is not to get angry, but to rob them of their framing and put them on the defensive. May’s assertion is absurd on its face, so put that back in his lap and ask him to prove it–name these mythical leftists. And then ask him how he defines “winning” in Iraq. I mean, you have a signatory to the infamous PNAC letter to Clinton recommending that he take out Saddam, how well have any of their premises turned out in reality? Don’t dignify this guy who has been on the wrong side of every argument by accepting his frame, Ed. Show him for the chump he is.

Read the rest of this story…

'Earning' a Seat on the Straight Talk Express

Reporters ‘have to earn’ special interview area seat on new ’straight talk’ airplane.

McCain has refurnished his airplane with
a VIP section for the most obedient reporters.

Top McCain aide Mark Salter said "‘only the good reporters’ would get to sit in the specially-configured section for interviews. ‘You’ll have to earn it,’ he said." So how can these reporters "earn" a seat? Never challenge the Senator…

Judging candidates based on their consistency…

The “Straight Talk Express” morphed into the “Bull-Shit Express,” and finally “evolved” into the “Flip-Flop Express.”

Via Daily Kos
McCain's Greatest Flips:

And Finally....

McSame tries his Jedi Mind Trick to hide his flip flops on economic expertise, but the tape doesn't lie

This has been another small sample of John McCain's Flip-Flops and dishonesty that the traditional media lapdogs refuse to tell you, lest they lose their comfortable airplane seating or miss out on some great BBQ at his home.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

IRAQ: Journalist Charges Censorship by U.S. Military in Fallujah

Via Dahr Jamail

An embedded U.S. journalist said the military tried to censor him after he posted photos from Fallujah.

U.S. journalist Zoriah Miller says he was censored by the U.S. military in the Iraqi city of Fallujah after photographing Marines who died in a suicide bombing.

Miller wanted people in the U.S. to understand what is really happening in Iraq and the devastating effects of war.

"I thought, 'Nobody in the U.S. has any idea what it means when they hear that 20 people died in a suicide bombing.' I want people to be able to associate those numbers with the scene and the actual loss of human life. And to show why soldiers are suffering from PTSD [post-traumatic stress disorder]," Miller told IPS News.


Miller explained to IPS that he meticulously showed his photos to the Marines he was with to make sure he was not going to show any photos that would upset the family members of the deceased Marines. "They were all okay with them, so then about 96 hours after the bombing I published the photos on my blog."

Then things got interesting.

Miller said the PAO claimed he was not allowed, by the embed contract, to show dead or wounded U.S. citizens or soldiers in the field. "I never signed any contract for that," Miller said.


The letter he was given stated reasons for his dismissal as "you photographed the remains of U.S. soldiers", "you posted these images along with detailed commentary", and "by posting the images and your commentary you violated 14 H and O of the news media agreement you signed." […]

In addition, "By providing detailed information of the effectiveness of the attack and the response of U.S. forces to it, you have put all U.S. forces in Iraq at greater risk for harm."

Miller feels the reason for his dismissal is otherwise.


Friday, July 4, 2008

Elitism Problem?

As everyone knows, Democrats have struggled for generations with the perception that they're out of touch elitists. Barack Obama is no exception. He lives in Hyde Park, Chicago and ever since his book became a best-seller he's made a whole bunch of money. As a part-time professor at the University of Chicago he came to be acquainted with various pointy-headed professor types and he even ordered an orange juice at breakfast once which is the exact same kind of juice they serve at breakfast at the Aspen Ideas Festival.

By contrast, John McCain is an all-American regular guy who, like most people, earns his keep by marrying an heiress. Like average, everyday folks the McCain's rely on credit cards to make ends meet month-to-month "Cindy McCain charged as much as $500,000 in a single month on one American Express card and $250,000 on another, while one of their two dependent children had an AmEx card with a monthly balance as large as $50,000."

Yes it's true, one of McCain's dependent children spent approximately the median annual household income of the United States in a single month and that's how McCain knows how to connect with regular people.

Similarly, Mrs. McCain "favors suits made by the German designer Escada, which typically retail for around $3,000 a pop" so she understands that most Americans welcome Wal-Mart's discount prices.

And like many Americans, the McCains are very effected by developments in the real estate market, since "trusts and corporations controlled by her and her children spent nearly $11 million between the summer of 2004 and February 2008 on three condominiums in Phoenix and a pair outside San Diego."

The McCains understand that these days many young people graduate from college saddled with debt and need a helping hand, that's why they spent "$700,000 for a 1,900-square foot, three-bedroom loft condo for her then-22-year-old daughter Meghan McCain" after she graduated from Columbia.

Similarly, they know all about problems with inflation since they "increased their budget for household employees from $184,000 in 2006 to $273,000 in 2007, according to John McCain’s tax returns."

Threat of Celebrity Exodus

This time, exit stage... Right...

Stephen Baldwin On Fox News: If Obama Wins, I'll Leave The Country

Fox News Airs Altered Photos of NY Times Reporters

Via Media Matters:

Summary: During a segment in which Fox & Friends co-hosts Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade labeled New York Times reporter Jacques Steinberg and editor Steven Reddicliffe "attack dogs," Fox News featured photos of Steinberg and Reddicliffe that appeared to have been digitally altered -- the journalists' teeth had been yellowed, their facial features exaggerated, and portions of Reddicliffe's hair moved further back on his head. Fox News gave no indication that the photos had been altered.

Fox News gave no indication that the photos had been altered.

Obama "Dignity" TV Ad

Barack-Iraq-Gate: Anatomy of a Media Smear

Via Jed Report