Friday, September 30, 2005

You don't believe in war...

It has been 812 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

The lovely and talented Miss Audrey Hepcat...

...being otherwise occupied, here's an archival shot of one of her predecessors in my household menagerie. Meet the late, great Tabby Hoffman...

That Kerry fella…

…met with Cindy for some Q&A.

1. What noble cause?

“This is an artsy question that is hard to answer. However I can tell you that a war based on lies is not noble, but a war based on bringing freedom to people is noble.”

2. How many more lives?

“If we can not achieve the goal of bring freedom, I do not want to see any more lives lost in this war.”

3. How many lives are you personally willing to risk?

“I will say the same thing. If this war will not bring freedom to the Iraqi people I am not willing to personally risk any lives.”

4. What are you doing to bring our troops home?

“I believe that we are in a critical two month stage right now. The Iraqi people are supposed to have an election in December.”
Some, ahem, 'artsy' answers there. Sheehan seems happy. The Senator's listed on her Hall of Fame, one of only four Senators who have made it. Still, there are a couple questions she left out that I'd really like to get an answer to.
When does the withdrawal begin?

When will it conclude?
Time to get past the 'light at the end of the tunnel' arguments. No document, no election, not a thing, democratic, diplomatic or military, will move Iraq forward while American boots are on the ground.

It's another endless, senseless body count war.

C'mon, John.

How do you ask someone to be the last to die for their country in a war we've lost?

Hat tip to Pamela Leavey at The Democratic Daily.

Looks like a final score...

Bob Ferguson 13917

Carolyn Edmonds 12582
So it's Ferguson by 1335 votes. The result should be certified this afternoon, and it's on to the general election, though there's little doubt about that outcome.

The race has raised some interesting questions. There's the whole question of attack ads in intra-Party contests, the changing identity and behavior of mail voters as their numbers grow, the relationships between elected officials and the Party they purport to represent.

I'm going to ponder and celebrate the outcome some first, though.

Congratulations, Bob!

Thursday, September 29, 2005

But not for votin'...

It has been 811 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

From the Credit Where It's Due Department

At least one GOP Congresscritter has some sense of propriety, if not actual honor...
New Hampshire Republican Congressman Jeb Bradley says he will return 15-thousand dollars in campaign funds from former House majority leader Tom DeLay’s political action committee.
So, when's Dave Reichert going to give back the $20K he reaped from DeLay's ARMPAC slushfund?

Great Googley moogly…

…another bit of the bomb.
Think Progress has the truth about Ronnie Earle.



…he's just telling the truth, and they think it's hell.

Post of the Day

Gilliard's got it. A tidbit...
What I don't think people see is this: once you start having scandal after scandal, you start to bleed political power. DeLay's indictment and Frist's SEC problems (the kind you NEVER want) mean that an independent Katrina commision will be formed. Also, Social Security theft is now dead. Bush lost his main Congressional allies, after all Hastert does nothing but say stupid things on camera. And Roy Blunt has his own ethical problems.
From your keyboard to God's monitor, Steve...

Quote of the Day

A blogger scores again. This time it's athenae at First Draft, who offers a measured response to the DeLay indictment...
Use it. Hit 'em hard, hit 'em with the chair, and if they still get up, pick up that bottle of champagne you just emptied and hit 'em again.

One more day…

…and it's done.
Bob Ferguson 13766

Carolyn Edmonds 12426
There'll be one more set of numbers this afternoon, but with Bob Ferguson's lead having climbed to 1340 votes, this one looks ready for certification now.

A happy outcome, from my perspective as a rank and file Democratic activist, but waiting for mail ballots still drives me nuts…

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

You're old enough to kill...

It has been 810 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Their leader.

Indicted criminal conspirator.

Just one more reason…

Quote of the Day

"I know what I'm doing, and I think I do a pretty darn good job of it."

Michael 'Brownie' Brown
Of course, what he was doing was lying his ass off to a bunch of Republican congresscritters, and indeed, he was exceptional at it...

A boost for Bob…

…as the latest numbers show the Ferguson lead swelling to 1226 votes, nearly a 5% edge.
Bob Ferguson 13551

Carolyn Edmonds 12285
This one's looking done, with only a couple days left to count the mail votes of stragglers who waited until midnight on election day to put their ballot in a mailbox in Tierra del Feugo or whatever, wherever.

It took a full week past election day to get a clear picture of the outcome of an election that it's turning out wasn't really all that close after all. Happily, the seat in question is about as safely Democratic as any, but what if there really was a November contest to worry about? How is it a good thing for our nominees to be held in political stasis for a week or ten days while the opposition drives forward?

Why isn't our Party demanding election day results that matter for our Democratic primaries?

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

...violence flaring, bullets loadin'.

It has been 809 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Quote of the Day

Honors to a blogger this time. Matthew Gross, writing about "this cavalier and callous administration..."
"They have robbed the treasury and destroyed the nation's soul."
There it is in a nutshell. We are watching the material and spiritual destruction of a nation, and it's not an accident, not simply a matter of incompetence.

There's a destructionist agenda being pursued for no reason but the control of power and treasure by its advocates. Those destructionists own the contemporary Republican Party.

One more reason...

Monday, September 26, 2005

The eastern world is explodin'…

It has been 808 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Breathing room.

With a 1070 vote edge, Bob Ferguson's situation is starting to approach comfortable. Worth note is the over 4% margin of victory right now, which puts the race well beyond the mandatory recount trigger of .5%.
Bob Ferguson 13212

Carolyn Edmonds 12142
On a related note, I'm a bit pleased to note that my dismal turnout predictions were unduly pessimistic. I can't say I'm really happy about 30%, though. Who knows, maybe 35 when this is all over.

It's only ours if we claim it, folks. I know I'm probably preaching almost exclusively to the choir here, but it's an absolute obligation of citizenship to vote every damn time you get a chance.

Or it should be.

"The company gave in…"

How sweet that sounds! Congratulations to the Fighting Machinists of District 751 for the apparent success of their strike against the Boeing Company. The Seattle P-I reports...
The company gave in to union demands on issues that had triggered the strike more than three weeks ago and which had shut down Boeing's jetliner production in the Puget Sound area at a critical time, just as Boeing was cranking up to meet growing demand by customers for new jets.
Better pensions, no medical benefit cuts, protection for new workers, coverage of the Wichita plant -- the Machinists ran the table.

And for those who say that the workers never win because of lost wages, the contract includes a ratification bonus that should cover any wage losses and then some. Strikes pay off when the bosses pay up.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Right on baby...

It has been 807 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Cole crosses over…

…with two good reasons to "get the ground troops out now."

Juan Cole has been notable among critics of the Iraq war for his reluctance to call for immediate withdrawal, apparently due to a rigorous 'we broke it, we bought it' ethic and a genuine compassion for the millions of Iraqi's who want no more part of the chaos that will follow in our wake than they want of our presence or of Saddam, for that matter. They're innocents, victims, each and every one, and we have harmed them irreparably.

Two considerations have brought him over.
"The first reason to get the ground troops out now is that they are being fatally brutalized by their own treatment of Iraqi prisoners."
This is an excellent point, reflecting the admirable concern of an American for the welfare of those who enter battle on behalf of his nation.

The simple fact is that combat is invariably brutalizing, and the preparation for combat requires that the soldier be desensitized to the humanity of his opponent to the point that he can kill them, at quarters close or far, without hesitation. That is, in its essence, the job of every soldier. To kill. Coldly. On command.


To expect soldiers away from the actual field of combat to set aside their training and experience is a tough command challenge, but a necessary one. The brutal determination that is required for survival on the battlefield crosses into criminality when it's brought to the streets of a peaceful village, or to places of worship, or to POW camps. There are rigid rules, both in the Universal Code of Military Justice and in international agreements our government has endorsed, and upholding those rules is the duty of every level of the chain of command. Indeed, upholding them is impossible without clear and consistent direction of the highest levels of the chain of command, and that direction has been sorely lacking since the inception of this war. Instead, the envelope of permissible behavior has been constantly stretched and the limits have been steadily blurred. The results are apparent across the command, and across the globe. And the results are deplorable.

We must bring the troops home because their continued deployment is destroying them and the services they have dedicated themselves to.

Did I mention I hate what they've done to my Army?

Cole continues…
"The second reason is that the ground troops are not accomplishing the mission given them, and are making things worse rather than better."
In other words, we have lost the war, and there is no peace, or prospect for peace, while we remain in place.

It may ring hollow in some quarters, but many Vietnam veterans cling to the knowledge that whatever the outcome of our war, we were never defeated on the battleground. That's not so for veterans of the Iraq war. The spectacle of American forces being held in place by the resistance, negotiating cease-fires on the terms of our contestants and withdrawing behind secure walls has become familiar to us, and is destroying the morale of our troops. Meanwhile, among Iraqis we are widely viewed as not only an uninvited occupier, but an incompetent one, incapable of providing even the meager level of services and security that we have 'liberated' them from.

This is not a criticism of the troops in the field. Again, it's a command issue, and again it's a failure of command at the highest levels. Soldiers need well defined missions, measurable objectives, concrete plans for battlefield success. 'Mission Undefineable' = 'Mission Impossible'.

Juan's right, of course, and the stature of his voice is a valuable addition to the 'Troops Out' choir.


Shakespeare's Sister takes a look at the efforts by Democratic Senators to establish an agenda for '06 and beyond and applauds their desire to take on health care, something that only Democrats will really do.

I'm a bit taken back, though, by her analysis of the other issues the Senators are looking to address...
The other four are issues for which it’s necessary that the Democrats have a solid plan and a cohesive, easily-communicated message. But they’re not inspiring, are they? And that’s because they’re Republican issues. The Dems need to provide an alternative agenda on national security, energy independence, economic strength, and retirement security, but when the nebulous terms are reduced into what they really mean—the Iraq War, oil prices, taxes, and social security—it’s readily apparent that this is a reactionary platform. They’re still letting the GOP control the discussion.
C'mon, Shake's, you can't really mean it.

National security isn't a Republican issue, it's a central - no, the central function of any national government, and if it's not a central element of the Democratic agenda, we might as well hang up any hope of becoming the governing party in this country again. If it's not a central element of the Democratic agenda, we don't deserve to become the governing party of this country again.

Energy independence? Well, reducing it to a matter of oil prices is certainly a Republican perspective, but the issue is larger than that. Much larger. It's appropriately listed between national security and economic strength, because it's critical to success in either of those arenas. One of my continuing frustrations with the '04 Presidential campaign was the consistent failure to exploit John Kerry's expertise and vision in the energy independence arena. It's our issue, dammit, and we need it to win elections and to govern effectively.

Likewise, there's little prospect for Democratic success if we accept the Republican claim that they're the advocates for economic strength, and that the key to that strength is lower taxes in response to every challenge. Lower taxes haven't raised family incomes. Lower taxes haven't reduced the national debt. Lower taxes haven't made housing more affordable, food more plentiful, production more efficient or the American people more confident about their prospects or their children's. Accepting the Republican frame that economic strength is a matter of tax policy abandons vast areas of appeal that a Democratic agenda can offer. And again, this is an issue inextricably tied to health care policy, an issue that I agree Democrats must own to be successful.

We can only wish that retirement security was simply a matter of Social Security policy. The national consensus to retain and bolster the current SS system is overwhelming. It's a battle won. The next battleground in retirement security seems to be the desire of corporations to abandon their pension obligations, transferring them to the government or simply leaving their retirees hanging in the breeze. It's an issue that Democrats can use to highlight the pernicious influence of corporations in a Republican government that consistently compromises the people's interest to the greed of the corporate establishment.

National security, energy independence, economic strength and retirement security aren't Republican issues. They're the American agenda. Republicans didn't set that agenda, and they don't control the discussion. The agenda and the discussion belong to the American people, and any Party unwilling or unable to speak to every element of that agenda and take ownership of each is destined for failure.

Our nation is not secure. We are dependent on the benevolence of tyrants for essential energy resources. We are mired in debt and deficit, and few of us expect to do as well as our parents, or for our children to do as well as ourselves, as we watch the steady erosion of the middle class. Even the minimal promise made to Americans for a life of labor has been assaulted by the Republican government. They have no claim to those issues, unless they're going to argue that this is as good as it gets, the best we can do. They've had total power long enough to earn total responsibility.

As Democrats, we know we can do better. Kudos to Senator Reid & co. for preparing to stand up and say just what 'better' will look like.


…in the other war…
Reuters - A U.S. military helicopter crashed during an anti-militant operation in Afghanistan on Sunday, killing all five American crew members aboard, a U.S. military spokesman said.
That's 236 since '01, 82 of them this year.


And now...

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Tell me what's going on

It has been 806 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

athenae chimes in…

…on a point raised by Ezra. With some of the 'vote the person, not the party' types all aflutter because some Republican Senators have gone ahead and supported the Republican nominated for Chief Justice by a Republican president, she makes the obvious but too often overlooked case for partisanship in a post at First Draft...
...I'm not 19 anymore, and hopefully the people running NARAL aren't 19, and we can all understand that it's about power, not personal conviction. We are better off with Ben Nelson and Harry Reid in office than we are with two Republicans in those seats, I don't care how pro-choice those Republicans would claim to be. A Democratic Senate, and there would be no Chief Justice Roberts. A Democratic House, and there would be no President Bush.
It's a relief to realize there are a few more voices in the lefty blogosphere that appreciate the way government is organized in the US. Our legislative bodies, at the Congressional and Legislative levels particularly, is organized on the basis of partisanship, not merit. You can argue until you're blue about how it should, but as the late, great Lenny Bruce famously pronounced, "What should be is a lie. The truth is what is." If being 'reality-based' means anything, it means dealing with the world as it is, not with a lie about how it should be.

That's why, for instance, it's dismaying to see labor and some lefty bloggers piling on folks like Illinois Rep. Melissa Bean. Has she taken some votes that are just objectively wrong from a Democratic perspective. What is, though, is that she was the upset victor in a Republican district, and if she doesn't hold her seat, it will revert to the GOP. As a commenter at Swing State Project notes, there seems to be some hope that if we cut off our noses in spite, Bean will faint at the sight of our blood.

While I care about all the votes on which Bean has disappointed, it's the role of her caucus leadership to apply such discipline and sanctions as they see fit. If they seem to be reluctant to punish Bean for a bankruptcy vote, or a trade vote, maybe it's because they know they need her for an even more important vote - the election of a Democratic Speaker of the House in 2007.

That's got to be the bottom line for Blue Dogs like Bean, or for the wayward Senators on the Senate Judiciary Committee, or for any Democratic candidate. With Democratic leadership, the opportunity to take many of those awful votes will simply disappear.

Save the litmus tests for safe seats and hopeless causes. Where there's something worth keeping to lose, let's curb the impulse to purge until our majorities are insurmountable.

Ferguson comes back…

…with a 319 vote edge, larger, for the first time, than his election night lead, and maybe enough, if the trend holds, to avoid an automatic recount.
Bob Ferguson 11488

Carolyn Edmonds 11169
More numbers on Monday.

Patriotboy. Gotta love him... a patriotically heterosexual way, of course. This may be his best ever...

...though you probably should check 'em all out and decide for yourself.

Hmm. I hit the random button...

...but there seems to be some kind of unconscious theme here...time to change the tinfoil, I guess...
Joni Mitchell - California
Sonia Dada - You Don't Treat Me No Good
Mississippi Fred McDowell - 61 Highway
The Mamas & The Papas - California Dreamin'
Isaac Hayes - Theme from Shaft
T. Rex - Once Upon The Seas Of Abbysinia
Jimmy Cliff - Many Rivers To Cross
Doug Kershaw - Fais Do Do
Beach Boys - Surfin' Safari
Delroy Wilson - Better Must Come

Friday, September 23, 2005

I'll tell you what's going on...

It has been 805 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

We're captive on a carousel…

…of mail ballots. Edmonds moves out front by 79 votes with today's count
Bob Ferguson 10364

Carolyn Edmonds 10443
More tomorrow afternoon, then a day's respite.

Seriously, how can anyone believe that a process that leads to a delay of a week or more in establishing the winner of a primary election can be good for our Party, our candidates -either of them in this case - or our democracy?

If you ask me, results delayed is democracy diminished.

Every week...

...I hope she does something - something interesting would be nice, but really, just something.

Mostly, though, the lovely and talented Miss Audrey Hepcat just lays there...

Some relief…

…for the Ferguson camp in yesterday's numbers...
Bob Ferguson 9583

Carolyn Edmonds 9449
…but scant reassurance, really, given that we don't really know how many mail ballots are still outstanding, and the County generously allows itself a couple weeks to count them.

Still, there's a reassuring rise in the turnout as the envelopes are opened. Up to 23.51%.

Pretty damn sad when that's the good news.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Ya, what's going on...

It has been 804 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.


Bob Ferguson 8093

Carolyn Edmonds 8068
Just another reason I hate mail ballots. It'll probably be Saturday before the likely automatic recount begins, maybe a hand count to follow. Another number this PM, I think...

While (they hope) you weren't looking…



Wednesday, September 21, 2005

What's going on

It has been 803 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Good question…

Good question…

…from Fugitive, in a comment.
Why should Kerry pop up and advocate for a specific timetable, let alone propose one? Simply because it's the morally responsible thing to do?

Not to be too cold hearted about it, but why should Kerry do himself political damage by making it easier for the right to call him a peacenik or an appeaser or a commie pinko subversive? Sure, it might play to the left, but does he need to do that?
Let me tackle the second part first. On the question of whether there's a 'left' worth playing to, maybe it's just an old codger thing. I remember when the left was proudly radical, when socialism in a variety of formulations was openly advocated by meaningful, if not majority, numbers. When soft-soap designations like 'progressive' were spurned and liberals were scorned.

Left? There ain't no left left.

It's true that taking a stand for a scheduled withdrawal is, to a degree, pandering to the conscious, but today that's become a conscious majority, at least in terms of how the war has been conducted. If the Democratic Party, the liberal blogosphere, Move On, etc., etc aren't about the business of expanding that consciousness, then we'd all best get about it.

The right will call him a peacenik, and an appeaser, and a commie pinko subversive, and worse. It's what they do. When you haven't got a real program for real people, there's not to do but spread fear and doubt about your opponent. One thing I feel pretty sure about, though. John Kerry won't let himself get 'swift-boated' again.

So, I don't think there's much help to come from the left, or much harm to be done by the right, as a result of Kerry calling for a withdrawal schedule with a deadline. Why then?

Well, the 'morally responsible' bit's important. My position is that ending the war against Iraq and withdrawing our military presence is the right thing to do, for America, for Iraq, for the world. The Democratic nominee for President of the United States should have a commitment to doing the right thing, because we count on the President to do the right thing. I simply can't imagine myself supporting a candidate during the '08 primaries that doesn't include a defined end point for the war in his or her portfolio. Getting to that point earlier rather than later counts, too, on my own score sheet.

It's particularly important for John Kerry. The moral authority he earned on the battlefield and carried into a Senate hearing room is the essential basis of his entire political career. I thought he was mistaken when he voted to authorize, with specific provisions, the use of force to disarm Iraq if they did not submit to the regime of inspections required by the Gulf I treaty, but I accepted his vote, and the reservations he placed on that vote because it was based on what he thought he knew, what were, in fact, lies. It's time for him to acknowledge that mistake, and to redeem whatever cost his morality autority paid for that vote. The next step can't be ignored, though. He must chart a course to correct that mistake. It's an essential step for Kerry if he's going to run a successful nomination bid.

It's more than that, though. It's a matter of political practicality. Frankly, I think it should be the position of every Democratic prospect. There's simply more to be gained by campaigning with a plan to end the war than without one, and the plan needs to be detailed and definitive. The American people are increasingly looking for such a plan, for some light at the end of the proverbial tunnel. We can deliver that. The Republicans can't. It's time to give them full ownership of this war, and make them carry it to the polls.

Similarly, I believe our best hope for Congressional success in '06 will be to run as the party of real security, not reckless adventurism, and fiscal sanity. Some people think it's the wrong war. Some think it's the wrong way.

Everybody's beginning to understand that it costs too damn much.

In money, too.

A snippet…

…via Atrios.

DOBBS: Wait a minute. Senator, you can't say that. Congressman Tom DeLay says that this is the most efficient government he can imagine, that there's no fat in this government.

COBURN: Well, I talked with him today about that quote and that was not his quote. And you know ...

DOBBS: Whose was it? Whose was it, Senator?

COBURN: I'm worried -- I'm very -- well, I think -- it might have been manufactured. I'm not sure. The fact is, is we -- I know of $100 billion in cuts that we could make tomorrow that nobody would feel. Nobody would feel. And ...
Dr. Black concentrates on Coburn's attack on the Moonie Times. Hateful though Coburn may be, this doesn't seem to be a case where my enemy's enemy is my friend, so I won't leap to the defense of either the Washington Times' journalistic ethics or the Senator's integrity. Neither are defensible.

I am left wondering, though, how the Republican government, which preaches conservatism, could have left $100 billion dollars of fat that nobody apparently wants or needs (that's what I assume is meant by 'Nobody would feel.') in a budget after five years of full control of both Congress and the White House.

Maybe it's because the don't practice what they preach, because the destructionists have driven the conservatives out of power in the Republican Party.

Or maybe he's just admitting that his party is as incompetent as some of us have been saying all along.

Either way, it's one more bit of evidence...

Bob Ferguson, 6477…

Carolyn Edmonds, 6169

So it sits until the last of the mail votes are tallied. 308 votes may not seem like much of a lead, but it beats the heck out a 308 vote deficit.

If the vote totals seem low, it reflects the dismal turnout for the primary election. With all poll ballots and the mail votes on hand counted, King County's reporting something just over 14%. Since mail voters tend to return their ballots within a few days of receipt, it seems unlikely that the final tally will hit even a fourth of the potential voters. Anecdotally, it turns out that when the Brilliant and Beautiful Bride of Upper Left signed the tally sheet for our precinct, she was the first to do so since I had voted some seven hours earlier. Even if 75% of the ballots were cast by mail, that would be only 8 votes all day long in a precinct that had a near 70% turnout just last fall. One can only wonder if Edmonds' decision to direct a Rovian assault on Bob Ferguson was as successful in voter suppresion via disgust as Karl has been in the past. The turnout in the district with the hottest contest seems to argue so.

On an apparently brighter note, over 63% of voters county-wide selected a Democratic ballot. The light is dimmed a bit, though, with reports of Republican ballot mischief appearing. Another argument for partisan registration and a closed primary.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Talk to me so you can see

It has been 802 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Off to the polls...

...then the pub, then back for a couple of posts before jam night at the Cabin, then home to watch returns, then well, I've got a lot to do.

So do you.

If you live in Washington, vote.

If you vote, vote Democratic.

If you vote in the 1st King County Council District, vote for Bob Ferguson.

We'll talk when I can catch my breath...

That Kerry fella…

said this
Katrina is a symbol of all this administration does and doesn't do. Michael to Katrina what Paul Bremer is to peace in Iraq; what George Tenet is to slam dunk intelligence; what Paul Wolfowitz is to parades paved with flowers in Baghdad; what Dick Cheney is to visionary energy policy; what Donald Rumsfeld is to basic war planning; what Tom Delay is to ethics; and what George Bush is to "Mission Accomplished" and "Wanted Dead or Alive." The bottom line is simple: The "we'll do whatever it takes" administration doesn't have what it takes to get the job done.
…and this, too.
As they say, the first step towards recovery is to get out of denial. But don't hold your breath hoping acceptance of responsibility will become a habit for this administration. On the other hand, if they are up to another "accountability moment" they ought to start by admitting one or two of the countless mistakes in conceiving, "selling", planning and executing their war of choice in Iraq.
Right on, John. So tell me, how do you ask a young man or young woman to be the last one to die for their country in a failed venture founded on a lie?

C'mon. Set a date for return and sign me and millions more up for the next campaign.

Hat tip to commenter 'The Phantom'.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Don't punish me with brutality

It has been 801 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Quote of the Day

"When the hurricane struck, it did not turn the region into a Third World country ... it revealed one."

Danny Glover

Hat tip to athenae at First Draft.

A reminder...

...from the Washington State Democrats...

...and the King County Democrats, the 32nd District Democrats, the 46th District Democrats...

It's simple, really. When you vote Democratic, vote for the clear choice of Democrats.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Oh picket lines and picket signs

It has been 800 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

If it wasn't the gays…

…it musta been the goddam tree huggers...
The Clarion-Ledger has obtained a copy of an internal e-mail the U.S. Department of Justice sent out this week to various U.S. attorneys' offices: "Has your district defended any cases on behalf of the (U.S.) Army Corps of Engineers against claims brought by environmental groups seeking to block or otherwise impede the Corps work on the levees protecting New Orleans? If so, please describe the case and the outcome of the litigation."
Ummm, George? What was that about 'responsibility'?

Hat tip to Magpie at Pacific Views, where there's bunches of good stuff lately.

Time to reassess?

Motherlode wonders about that Kerry fella…
I wonder if John Kerry just might stand a chance in 2008. Up till recently I didn't think it was a possibility. But perhaps now the country would be ready to admit it made a mistake in 2004. His "skeletons" have been pretty well exploited to their maximum potential by the Rethugs and put to rest, while other Dems would just be fresh meat. Just a thought.
My own strenuous support of Senator Kerry in '04 notwithstanding, I'm not committed to anyone for '08. That's not to say, though, that I couldn't find myself firmly in the Kerry camp come primary time a couple years from now. Fundamental to that decision for me will be the Senator's ability to face his very own question - how do you ask a man to be the last one to die for his country?

Still, those that hastily rule out second runs ignore an important point that Motherlode references - the in-depth vetting that only a national campaign truly provides and is potentially the strongest weapon against the Republican smear machine.

First, though, Democrats have to give up the habit of rending their garments in shame over the quality of candidates we produce. I believe that John Kerry was an excellent choice in '04 who was damaged nearly as much by Democratic grumbling within the ranks (yeah, I've embraced Governor Dean as our Party's leader. No, I'm still not over some of the slander tossed at Kerry by sundry Deaners) as by Republican assault from without. Continued moaning about our misgivings over '04 do nothing to enhance our chances in '08, regardless of who's on the ticket.

Quote of the day.

Katrina ought to shake common sense into people who buy into the mindset that less government is more. They'll get their less government, all right -- just when they need it the most.

Robert Jamison, Seattle Post-Intelligencer

Hat tip to Lynn Allen at Evergreen Politics.

And now...

Saturday, September 17, 2005

To bring some understanding here today

It has been 799 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

How 'Bout That Electric Flag…

No, not this one…

…though they're a lot more pleasant to listen to. Nope, I'm talking about the virtual 'mission accomplished' banner that was raised in lights for Bush's speech from the French Quarter.

Brian Williams reports...
The motorcade route through the district was partially lit no more than 30 minutes before POTUS drove through. And yet last night, no more than an hour after the President departed, the lights went out. The entire area was plunged into total darkness again, to audible groans. It's enough to make some of the folks here who witnessed it... jump to certain conclusions.
Once again, all hat, no cattle. All show, no go.

And no doubt…


Preznit 38%...
The storm involved a massive flood, a major supply and security operation, and an evacuation order affecting more than a million people. It was not a normal hurricane – and the normal disaster relief system was not equal to it.
The storm was normal in every respect. It was big, sure, but that's hardly abnormal, certainly not unprecedented. That's why it's called a 'natural' disaster. It's perfectly natural for such a storm to occur.

Perfectly normal.

Completely predictable.

Actually predicted.

And the flood? No, the flood wasn't normal, because it wasn't natural. It's relationship to the storm is indirect. The flood was the result of human failure to prepare for the perfectly natural, perfectly normal, completely predictable, actually predicted storm.

More specifically, the flood was the result of the federal government's commitment to the safety and security of the people of New Orleans. No matter how hard they work to spread the blame between various jurisdictions for problems with the evacuation and rescue efforts in the wake of the flood, the responsibility for the failure of the levees rests on the people responsible for the integrity of the levees. That's the executive branch of the federal government, via the agency of
the Army Corps of Engineers, and the Congressional majority, who failed in their responsibilities for both funding and oversight.

The Republican government rolled the dice with the lives of the people of New Orleans as the wager. The bet was that the widely anticipated 'big storm' would hit on someone else's watch.

They lost their bet. New Orleans has paid the price. There are more immediate concerns, but any comprehensive solution must include the end of Republican government in the United States.

It's true…

A random ten...

...between the random hours I'm working this weekend...
Guy Clark - Good Hearted Woman
Gillian Welch & David Rawlins - Morphine
Ben Harper & The Blind Boys Of Alabama - Take My Hand
The Capitols - Cool Jerk
Barbra Streisand - Happy Days Are Here Again
George Jones - She Thinks I Still Care
The Youngbloods - Get Together
Chuck Berry - Johnny B. Goode
Sonny & Cher - I Got You Babe
The Chambers Brothers - People Get Ready

Friday, September 16, 2005

Oh, you know we've got to find a way

It has been 798 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Um, George?

Better talk to Tom...

President George W. Bush, facing alarm among some conservatives about the hefty costs of rebuilding following Hurricane Katrina, promised on Friday to find ways to offset some of the spending by cutting other government programs, and ruled out raising taxes.
"My answer to those that want to offset the spending is sure, bring me the offsets, I'll be glad to do it. But nobody has been able to come up with any yet."

When asked if that meant the government was running at peak efficiency, DeLay said, "Yes, after 11 years of Republican majority we've pared it down pretty good."
I suppose somebody's right, but I shudder to think it might be either one of those guys. No real surprise, though, that they can't even agree on what they're wrong about. Now, more than ever…

One nice thing...

...about the lovely and talented Miss Audrey Hepcat is that when you're too busy trying to take her picture to rub her behind the ears, she's perfectly happy to rub herself...

That was then…

“In the United States, where the war begun, we will continue our vital work to protecting American people, by protecting our ports and borders and safeguarding infrastructure, preparing for the worst. I mentioned the first responders. I can’t tell you how pleased I am with the coordination now between the federal government, the state government, and local governments for preparing our homeland.” [1/22/04]
…this is now…
"In a time of terror threats and weapons of mass destruction, the danger to our citizens reaches much wider than a fault line or a flood plain. I consider detailed emergency planning to be a national security priority. Therefore, I have ordered the Department of Homeland Security to undertake an immediate review, in cooperation with local counterparts, of emergency plans in every major city in America.+ [9/15/05]
He hasn't got a clue. Not a single freaking clue.

Don't believe it? How about this…
"As all of us saw on television, there is deep and persistent poverty in the region as well."
Is there anyone else in the entire country who needed TV coverage of the latest Bushco™ disaster to learn that there's poverty in? Alabama? Louisiana? Mississipi?

States that rank 41, 42 and dead last in per capita income?

Is it possible he didn't know that?

Well, yeah.

Again, though, no doubt about this…

Hat tip to Think Progress, where there's lots more...

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Simply because our hair is long

It has been 797 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Sometimes he's happy…

…sometimes he's furry, but mostly he's right on the money
Quite simply, the nation is a family of four making $50,000 per year but spending nearly $60,000 per year (and carrying about $200,000 in debts). Unless you can get the kids to stop eating or wearing clothes, you're not going to be able to get out of debt by eliminating the occasional family outing to the ballpark. Somebody's going to have to take a tip from that West Indian family on In Living Color and start workin' eight job!
Right about the money, too. In any case, Norbizness is always worth your time and attention (with some of the best random tune lists around to boot).

Yep, you should...

"On a personal basis, it is probably time for me to go," Lott said. "On a constituent and professional basis, maybe I shouldn't. I don't know."
No need to bother your beautiful mind, Trent. Just quit.

What, we worry?

OK, that's a pretty obvious Photoshop job. This sounds distressingly plausible, though...

Halliburton Gets Contract To Pry Gold Fillings From New Orleans Corpses' Teeth

Hat tip to Mr. Natural.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Oh, but who are they to judge us…

It has been 796 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

I've gotta admit…

…that I share some of Jon Stahl's apparent ennui regarding John Roberts. I haven't been paying particularly close attention myself, but that's mainly a result of low expectations. I figure I'm going disagree with pretty much everything he says, to the degree that he can be pinned down to anything he says at all. In the end, I assume he's going to get confirmed, and as Rehnquist's replacement, he's not going to make all that much difference in the composition of the Court.

Like Jon, I'm already looking ahead to the next nomination as the one that will provide the potentially greater impact on the balance of the Court, the one that needs to be a no holds barred fight for the integrity of the judiciary and, by extension, the integrity of Constitutional government in the United States of America.

Jack Balkin, writing for TPMCafe, provides wise counsel, though, pointing out that the current hearings aren't only important for the current nomination, but a critical step in the approach to the next.
By putting Roberts through tough questioning, asking for additional information that the White House refuses to produce, and by voting against Roberts if Democratic Senators are not satisfied with his responses, Democratic Senators do two things, both quite important.

First, they articulate their own vision of the Constitution and place it before the American people. The point is not to oppose for opposition's sake, but for the sake of key constitutional principles that are at stake.

Second, and equally important, Senators signal that the President will not get a pass on his Supreme Court nominations and that the Senators will fight hard against candidates for the O'Connor slot who are not moderate or centrist.
In fact, Balkin's first point isn't just important to this nomination and the next, but to the next election. It's a real opportunity for Democrats to take advantage of a 'here we stand' moment while interested eyes are focused on their efforts. Of course, it won't mean much if ten or twenty or more of them end up going along to get along on the confirmation vote. That's why I'm an advocate (if not a particularly hopeful one) for a party line vote on the Roberts.

Democrats shouldn't support Roberts because Roberts won't represent Democratic positions on the Court. He wasn't nominated to do that, he can't be expected to do that, and unless his Republican sponsors and I turn out to be completely wrong about him, he won't do that.

Let's make what use we can of him now, since he'll likely be useless to us later.

Zencomix rocks!

Subterranean Haliburton Blues

Rummy comes foot fleet
Face covered, black sheet
Talkin' that Rove put
Gannon in the bed, but
The Keg's tapped anyway
Novak says that Cheney'll say
They bunker-bust in early May
So cough up the pundit's pay...

Look out Kid
We got our no-bid
Walk on tip-toes
Drug War drug flows
Better photo-op with those
That carry 'round a firehose
Keep a coke nose
His vacation grows
You don't need a weatherman
To know which way Katrina blows...

Get rich, Dick swell
Hang around an oil well
Rangers' sell, show and tell
Hurricane pell-mell
Try hard, pork lard
Payback, Right gale
Gitmo jail, jump bail
Join the Army if you fail

Look out kid
they got a no-bid
Betchel cheater
six times looser
around Iraqi Theater
Condi by the whirlpool
Colin got played the fool
Rove's hallowed leaker
Watch, Iraq's a bleeder

Ahh, Get Born-Again, porn again
short pants, romance, Gannon Dance
Get blessed, Gitmo stress
Torture test, they'll confess
Please her, tease him, buy gifts
Porkfat Lobbyist
20 years of snortin'
and they teach you how to play the grift

Look out kid
They got the no-bid hid
Better dump Gannon's manhole
Flightsuit vandal
Iraqis wearin' sandals
Avoid Chalabi scandals
Don't wanna be a bum
Can't walk and chew gum
The pumps don't work
Cuz the levee breach was plannned,DOH!

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Mother, Mother, everybody thinks we're wrong

It has been 795 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

"It is time to come home, America...

"...Time to look within our own borders and within our own souls. There are many questions to be answered and many missions to accomplish right here on our own soil. We have neglected too much for too long in our own backyard. "To every thing there is a season, . . . a time to break down and a time to build up. . . ."

Senator Robert Byrd


Kos has more...

In the midst of everything...

...we must remember this. The US had more fatalities in Iraq during August than in any month since January. We've been losing about one GI a day since then.

It's 1896, now.


He really said it.

He really said it.

Hard to believe, even for me, but Think Progress has the quote and the video and everything…
“Maybe you know something I don’t know.”

That was President Bush’s response to a reporter who asked whether he had heard that his own FEMA director, Michael Brown, resigned today from the administration.
Maybe he's right. No doubt about this, though…

Monday, September 12, 2005

What's going on

It has been 794 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Quote of the Day

Former Gov. Gary Locke speechwriter (and son of Scoop) Peter Jackson, on John Wyble, architect of Carolyn Edmonds smear campaign for the King County Council…

"[He] combines the Rottweiler MO of a Karl Rove with the success rate of a Harold Stassen."

…and he and his client should be ashamed of themselves.

Needless to say, Bob Ferguson needs your help to fight back.

By now you've heard…

Judging from the blistering analyses in Time, Newsweek, and elsewhere these past few days, it turns out that Bush is in fact fidgety, cold and snappish in private. He yells at those who dare give him bad news and is therefore not surprisingly surrounded by an echo chamber of terrified sycophants. He is slow to comprehend concepts that don't emerge from his gut. He is uncomprehending of the speeches that he is given to read....
…but really, do you think Froomkin and the analysts he cites are just now finding this out? Do you really think this article couldn't have been written a year ago, when silence constituted complicity in the campaign to re-elect the fidgety, cold, snappish, slow, uncomprehending fool?

Too little. Too late.

Is there anyone left who imagines there is such a thing as a 'liberal media'?

Michael Brown resigns

Alright, Brownie! Now that's what I call 'a heck of a job.'

Rummy should do so well...

Really. He should.

They broke it...

...and they're still trying to sell it. Ezra's right...
The car broke because Bush slashed its tires and now his allies are trying to convince us that the real problem lies with the whole "car" concept.
The ailment affecting FEMA has infected everything Bushco™ has touched. Newt Gingrich has dubbed it 'anti-government conservatism' (and even he concedes it's foolish) but it's not really conservative at all.

They're not trying to conserve anything in government. They're a wrecking crew, pure and simple.

In a word, destructionists.

And if they're not pissing you off, you're not paying attention.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Oh, what's going on

It has been 793 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.


And now...

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Talk to me, so you can see

It has been 792 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Preznit 40, 39...

Going, going...

Oliver's equation...

America has X amount of money to be spent.

Do we spend it on:

a) Rebuilding Iraq so the mullahs can take it over and become another Iran
b) Yet another tax evasion for Paris Hilton, Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, etc.
c) Rebuilding Louisiana & Mississippi and taking care of our citizens

This is not brain surgery.
It's hardly even hard work…

A random list...

...I could have made on purpose. In fact, a good compilation from each of these artists would be a pretty good desert island selection...
Donovan - Stealing
James Taylor - Mexico
Tom Paxton - Leaving London
Big Joe Turner - Boogie Woogie Country Girl
Lovin' Spoonful - Darling Companion
Bob Dylan - Like A Rolling Stone
Weavers - Rally Round The Flag
BB King - The Thrill Is Gone
Gov't Mule - She Said She Said
Rickie Lee Jones - Easy Money

Friday, September 09, 2005

Don't punish me with brutality

It has been 791 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Some days a big, black lump... all you're gonna get, but when Miss Audrey Hepcat's on hand, you can be sure it will be a lovely and talented lump...


…we're undoubtedly in the midst of a national emergency, and it's arguably just the kind of national emergency that Congress had in mind when they drafted the Davis-Bacon Act. So, while it's hard to imagine how this administration will fail to abuse the situation to the benefit of their corporate underwriters, this is probably the right thing to do in a more perfect world...
President Bush issued an executive order Thursday allowing federal contractors rebuilding in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina to pay below the prevailing wage.

In a notice to Congress, Bush said the hurricane had caused "a national emergency" that permits him to take such action under the 1931 Davis-Bacon Act in ravaged areas of Alabama, Florida, Louisiana and Mississippi.
I can imagine scenarios, a couple brigades of displaced workers, for instance, organized along the lines of the old CCC (something the creators of Davis-Bacon would likely endorse) working for room, board and a subsistence wage while beginning the extensive manual cleanup that will be required across the Gulf Coast, where prevailing wage rates (this is not a suspension of minimum wage protections, minimal as they may be, regardless of what you've heard) might be impractical, or even irresponsible in terms of stewardship of public monies.

I can imagine. As I say, I can't imagine Bushco™ and their sundry subsidiaries passing on the opportunity to exploit the situation for irresponsible profit.

We need a counter-proposal from the Congressional D's, a corresponding cap on the profits that corporations can glean from the tragedy on the Gulf Coast.

Workers are being asked to roll up their sleeves and give a bit more for a bit less. No less should be expected of the bosses.

Is it goodbye?

…or is it just 'til we meet again?
Federal Emergency Management Agency Director Michael Brown is being removed from his role managing Hurricane Katrina relief efforts, NBC News and The Associated Press reported Friday.
They're pulling him out of Baton Rouge, but leaving him in the top emergency management post in the country. After all, actually firing him might be interpreted as an admission that appointing him in the first place was a mistake.

Until they uncover the memo that proves the Mayor of New Orleans recommended him and Governor Blanco confirmed him, I suppose…

Preznit 40%...

...and falling.

AP/Ipsos, via Kos.
Approve 39 (42)
Disapprove 59 (55)

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Picket lines and picket signs...

It has been 790 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Old news to me...

...but it's nice to see folks catching on.

Hat tip to The Talent Show.

DHS? FEMA? ...

Not actually evil, but bad tempered, bureaucratic, officious and callous. They wouldn't even lift a finger to save their own grandmothers ... without orders signed in triplicate, sent in, sent back, queried, lost, found, subjected to public enquiry, lost again, and finally buried in soft peat for three months and recycled as firelighters.

...or just Douglas Adams' Vogons?

Hat tip to TheGreenKnight at Big Brass Blog.

The kindness of strangers…

Goose3five has compiled a list of international responses to the Gulf Coast crisis over at Comments From Left Field. France is in, so's Germany. Israel, too, and our neighbors to the north and south. Ireland ponied up a million in cash, I'm pleased to note. So did Bangladesh.


Makes the five mill from the Saudis look pretty sad...

More here.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

To bring some lovin' here today

It has been 789 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Credit where it's due…

An eyewitness report at Daily Kos (my emphasis)...
We also suspect the media will have been inundated with "hero" images of the National Guard, the troops and the police struggling to help the "victims" of the Hurricane. What you will not see, but what we witnessed,were the real heroes and sheroes of the hurricane relief effort: the working class of New Orleans. The maintenance workers who used a fork lift to carry the sick and disabled. The engineers, who rigged, nurtured and kept the generators running. The electricians who improvised thick extension cords stretching over blocks to share the little electricity we had in order to free cars stuck on rooftop parking lots. Nurses who took over for mechanical ventilators and spent many hours on end manually forcing air into the lungs of unconscious patients to keep them alive. Doormen who rescued folks stuck in elevators. Refinery workers who broke into boat yards, "stealing" boats to rescue their neighbors clinging to their roofs in flood waters. Mechanics who helped hot-wire any car that could be found to ferry people out of the City. And the food service workers who scoured the commercial kitchens improvising communal meals for hundreds of those stranded.

Most of these workers had lost their homes, and had not heard from members of their families, yet they stayed and provided the only infrastructure for the 20% of New Orleans that was not under water.
Many of those who stayed in New Orleans stayed to save their homes, their neighbors, their city. These are the people the GOP spin machine would blame for the tragedy they faced and fought.

It's our shame if we let that happen.

Hat tip to Steve Gilliard.

"What didn't go right?"

"What didn't go right?"

Anecdote of the day decade...
(Shadow Speaker Nancy Pelosi) related that she had urged Bush at the White House on Tuesday to fire Michael Brown.

"He said 'Why would I do that?'" Pelosi said.

"'I said because of all that went wrong, of all that didn't go right last week.' And he said 'What didn't go right?'"

"Oblivious, in denial, dangerous," she added.
"Dangerous." That's the President of the United States she's talking about.

(Cosmic muffin of your choice) save us all.

Hat tip to The Carpetbagger Report, where Harry has his say, too.

Blame, blame bo blame…

…banana fanna fo flame, fee fy mo mlame, blame.

I gotcher 'blame game' right here, bubba.

The NYT tells it like it is...
...we have learned through bitter experience - the Abu Ghraib nightmare is just one example - that when this administration begins an internal investigation, it means a whitewash in which no one important is held accountable and no real change occurs.

Mr. Bush signaled yesterday that we are in for more of the same when he sneered and said, "One of the things that people want us to do here is to play a blame game." This is not a game. It is critical to know what "things went wrong," as Mr. Bush put it. But we also need to know which officials failed - not to humiliate them, but to replace them with competent people.
Not that competence has ever been an issue at Bushco™, of course. If you're not crazy enough, you can buy your way in, but background? Experience? Ability?

No sweat, GI. As long as your toes are on the line, your job is in the bag.

This isn't about a 'blame game.' It's not about blame at all. It's about responsibility, and it's serious business. Deadly serious business. Things like this demand a response beyond spin…
WASHINGTON - The government's disaster chief waited until hours after Hurricane Katrina had already struck the Gulf Coast before asking his boss to dispatch 1,000 Homeland Security workers to support rescuers in the region — and gave them two days to arrive, according to internal documents.
It's criminal incompetence. People died because of that delay, be sure of it. Maybe dozens, maybe hundreds, maybe thousands.

So, Mr. Preznit, where's the buck stop today?

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

You know we've got to find a way

It has been 788 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

The young'uns can have Gilligan...

...this will always be my Bob Denver...


Oh jeebus…

…they're all idiots.

Amid our tears for the Gulf Coast, a few, perhaps, for our whole sadly misled nation…

…just before we set our jaws to fight like hell.

And another…

I note that Michael Brown is a current top target for a supernatural assist over at . I suppose he needs all the help he can get, and there's certainly no evidence that he's a natural at his current gig. Charlie at Big Brass Blog has been tracking some of Brownie's recent achievments. So far FEMA has refused or held up...

· A tax-funded, state-of-the-art medical team
· The USS Bataan
· Wal-mart trucks full of ice and water
· The water tankers from the US Forest Service
· A specially trained and self-sufficient relief team from Chicago
· A team of specially trained rescue workers from B.C., Canada
· The Red Cross
…and a bunch more.

Maybe instead of prayers for the new FEMA director we need some prayer for a new FEMA director...


Quote of the Day

Preznit 40%'s momma...

"What I’m hearing is they all want to stay in Texas. Everyone is so overwhelmed with the hospitality. And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway so this (she chuckled)--this is working very well for them."

Idiot. Bitch.

Riding on the 'City of Louisiana'…

Nope. Just doesn't scan…


Monday, September 05, 2005

For only love can conquer hate.

It has been 787 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Hail to the Chief?

Bush tags Roberts for the Renhquist job. Armando speaks pretty well for me at this point...
Here's my quick take - a vote is a vote. So Chief Justice or Associate Justice, Roberts is unacceptable. That said, now he is Rehnquist's replacement, not O'Connor's. This sounds stupid I know, but it is very important for framing.

We now have to, more than ever, reveal Roberts' true views - to fully demonstrate that Roberts' is Rehnquist's heir, not O'Connor's.

In short, Social Conservatives have gotten their nominee - his name is John Roberts. For replacing O'Connor, Bush must pick a Justice like O'Connor, not Scalia, Thomas or Rehnquist.

Happy Labor Day!

When the union's inspiration
through the workers' blood shall run,
There can be no power greater
anywhere beneath the sun.
Yet what force on earth is weaker
than the feeble strength of one?
But the union makes us strong.

Solidarity forever!
Solidarity forever!
Solidarity forever!
For the union makes us strong

They have taken untold millions
that they never toiled to earn,
But without our brain and muscle
not a single wheel can turn.
We can break their haughty power;
gain our freedom when we learn
That the Union makes us strong.

Solidarity forever!
Solidarity forever!
Solidarity forever!
For the union makes us strong

In our hands is placed a power
greater than their hoarded gold;
Greater than the might of armies,
magnified a thousand-fold.
We can bring to birth a new world
from the ashes of the old
For the Union makes us strong.

I'm working today, myself, but I'll be thinking about the fighting machinists of IAM District 751, who find themselves on the picket line this Labor Day. It's day three of their strike against the Boeing Company and you don't have to be a member of IAM to show your solidarity and lend a hand.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

You see, war is not the answer...

It has been 786 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

The whole world is watching…

Via War And Piece
ZDF News reported that the president's visit was a completely staged event. Their crew witnessed how the open air food distribution point Bush visited in front of the cameras was torn down immediately after the president and the herd of 'news people' had left and that others which were allegedly being set up were abandoned at the same time.
Lights, camera, mission accomplished…

Be afraid.

Be very afraid.

A distressing reminder from Lean Left.

The President Who Appointed the FEMA Director Will Now Appoint the Chief Justice.

"Nobody's coming to get us. Nobody's coming…"

Jefferson Parish President Aaron Broussard:
“Are you coming, son? Is somebody coming?” and he said, “Yeah, Mama, somebody’s coming to get you.” Somebody’s coming to get you on Tuesday. Somebody’s coming to get you on Wednesday. Somebody’s coming to get you on Thursday. Somebody’s coming to get you on Friday… and she drowned Friday night. She drowned Friday night! [Sobbing] Nobody’s coming to get us. Nobody’s coming to get us…
Crooks and Liars has the video link...

And now...

Saturday, September 03, 2005

We don't need to escalate.

It has been 785 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Let the games begin...

MSNBC reports that Rhenquist is dead. What's President 40% going to do next?

Random ten...

Really. I couldn't make this one up...
Ani Difranco - Heartbreak Even
Billie Holiday - Good Morning Heartache
Young Rascals - Groovin'
Todd Snider - Talkin' Seattle Grunge Rock Blues
Robert Johnson - Hellhound On My Trail
Randy Newman - Kingfish
Blind Boys Of Alabama - Wade In The Water
Bob Marley - Redemption Song
Lovin' Spoonful - Jug Band Music
Arlo Guthrie - City Of New Orleans
The Newman, Blind Boys and Guthrie just popped up, seemingly to remind us that the Red Cross donation link is active and awaiting your action...

Friday, September 02, 2005

Father, father...

It has been 784 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.


The lovely and talented Miss Audrey Hepcat, caught attempting to evade the household paparazzi...

Another bit of nasty business…

…in my postal box. I've received only two pieces of political mail about the upcoming primary election here in the upper left. Both of 'em are hit pieces attacking King County Councilmember Bob Ferguson.

Second verse, a little bit worse.

The latest from Ferguson's opponent, Carolyn Edmonds, is a classic, I'll admit. Some pull quotes without context and a bit of strategically placed red ink on an oversized, full color card, it's the kind of thing that consultants make their bread and butter on. Sometimes it works. This time it shouldn't.

It's basically an attack on Ferguson's attempt to get $10 million in funding for veteran's services in the county. Edmonds' attack is predicated on pitting the needs of veterans against the needs of seniors, the disabled, the homeless and children (earth to Carolyn - many veterans are seniors and/or disabled. Veterans are disproportionately represented among the homeless. Lots of us have kids. You're pitting us against ourselves).

There's no mention, of course, of any alternative measures Edmonds might support, or any actual problems with Ferguson's proposal. It just exists, and a lineup of straw men with a heavy dose of emotion seems to be all Edmonds has left in her arsenal.

Actually, there's hardly any mention of Edmonds at all. The only place her name appears is in the legally mandated 'paid for' line, doubling as the return address, on the bottom of the reverse side. That's kind of noteworthy itself. When it's time to issue a hit, candidate from both sides of the aisle usually seek cover from their respective parties, having the party make a contribution of mailing expenses so the candidate's name needn't appear on the piece. That's an option unavailable to Edmonds. Every time the Party has considered the race for endorsement, from a convention of precinct workers to legislative district organizations to the County Executive Board, Bob Ferguson has been the choice of Democrats.

That's two in a week, with three weeks to go. The mud is piling up, and Bob's going to have to start shoveling it out of the way pretty soon. Responses to this kind of sustained assault are expensive. You can help out here. As I've said before, the political aspects of this race extend far beyond the local policy concerns involved. The integrity of the Democratic Party's candidate selection process is just one of those aspects that make this an election worth your attention, no matter where you are.

You can learn more about Bob here.

Good questions.

Good questions.

Stirling Newberry has a batch over at Bop News. Here are a couple of the best...
If a well armed society is a polite society, why isn't New Orleans the most polite city in America now?

Why is it that today we are being told that no one foresaw the levees breaking when two days ago FEMA was claiming it was ready?
…and here's one of mine. If you haven't chipped in to the Red Cross yet, what are you waiting for?

Just call her Imelda…

Some hot gossip from Gawker...
What does surprise us: Just moments ago at the Ferragamo on 5th Avenue, Condoleeza Rice was seen spending several thousands of dollars on some nice, new shoes (we’ve confirmed this, so her new heels will surely get coverage from the WaPo’s Robin Givhan). A fellow shopper, unable to fathom the absurdity of Rice’s timing, went up to the Secretary and reportedly shouted, “How dare you shop for shoes while thousands are dying and homeless!” Never one to have her fashion choices questioned, Rice had security PHYSICALLY REMOVE the woman.
No shame. Not a bit.

Hat tip to Tom at Corrente.

Quote of the Day.

Your President...
"I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees."
Except, I suppose, the people whose job it was to, umm, anticipate the breach of the levees.

Crooks and Liars has the video.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

To bring some lovin' here today - yay

It has been 783 days since Karl Rove violated his obligations under Standard Form 312 without the White House taking “corrective action.”

Rove. Treason. Betrayal.

Just a couple data points...

via Think Progress.
45.8 million Americans lacked health insurance in 2004. Up from 45.0 million in 2003. Up from 39.8 million in 2000. (Yeah, that's me with my hand raised...)

Average CEO makes 430 times the salary of the average production worker in 2004. Up from 301-1 in 2003. Up from 109-1 in 1990.
The New York Times offers some perspective.

Duty calls. More later...

...and oh yeah. The Red Cross donation link is open 24/7. Our countrymen (and women...and little babies) are dying. You know what you can do. Just do it.


... toss the Red Cross a twenty. After all, you've already spent 850 bucks on the damn war.

Hat tip to Terry Turner.

Asleep at the switch…


I mean, it's not like he didn't know. Sid Blumenthal's got the goods (yeah, another Salon link. Watch the ad. Better yet, subscribe. Independent liberal journalism needs all the encouragement it can get.).
In early 2001, the Federal Emergency Management Agency issued a report stating that a hurricane striking New Orleans was one of the three most likely disasters in the U.S., including a terrorist attack on New York City. But by 2003 the federal funding for the flood control project essentially dried up as it was drained into the Iraq war. In 2004, the Bush administration cut funding requested by the New Orleans district of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for holding back the waters of Lake Pontchartrain by more than 80 percent. Additional cuts at the beginning of this year (for a total reduction in funding of 44.2 percent since 2001) forced the New Orleans district of the Corps to impose a hiring freeze.
Seems to me there was another national crisis that followed one of George's willful ignorance episodes…