Friday, July 18, 2008

Now That It's OK to Eat Tomatoes Again

Should we discuss what to do with the old ones?

Kafkaesque as Standard Operating Procedure

"good enough for FBI work."

I wonder if Cindy "always proud of my country" McCain is proud of this:

[Steven] Wax and his colleagues were lawyers for Brandon Mayfield, the Oregon man who was erroneously jailed for alleged complicity in the 2004 Madrid train bombings. He was picked up as a "material witness" by the Justice Department, which based its suspicion of him--and countless media leaks that portrayed Mayfield, an American citizen who is Muslim, as a possible international terrorist--on what turned out to have been a faulty reading of a fingerprint by the FBI.

When Wax first was retained to defend Mayfield, he did not immediately know that the FBI and Spanish investigators had differed from the start on the fingerprint identification, the sole piece of "evidence" the U.S. government came up with before it swooped down on Mayfield and his family, searching his home through “sneak and peek” tactics authorized under the Patriot Act; leaving his wife and children with the terrifying thought that Mayfield might disappear or be charged with a crime that carried the death penalty.

If you want to read something absolutely chilling, take a look at the excerpt from Chapter One:

Then it happened -- a knock on the door around 9:30 in the morning on Thursday, May 6. People living under a host of dictatorships around the world, from Russia to Latin America to North Korea, have learned to dread the "knock on the door" from the KGB, Cheka, or Stasi. But here in America it is not something we have had to fear since the "visits" from government agents and recruitment of informers during the Communist witch hunts in the late 1940s and early 1950s by Senator Joseph McCarthy and the House Un-American Activities Committee. Even then, the fear was never widespread. When Brandon answered the knock on his office door in Beaverton that day, his worst nightmare turned real.

Welcome to Bush-Cheney America. And you can bet the GOP wants to keep it this way.
Their Good Old Days=Our Dark Ages

Maybe I was giving certain wingnuts a little too much credit when I suggested they were stuck in the 19th Century. Bud Day, Swift Boat scumbag and McCain "surrogate," is positively Medieval in his latest fearmongering rant:

One of John McCain's fellow POW's in Vietnam defended the war in Iraq, saying, "The Muslims have said either we kneel or they're going to kill us."

Tell that to your buds, no pun intended Bud, the Saudis. Or to the Jordanians. Or our Pakistani allies. Or, for that matter, to any Muslim nation with which we have a diplomatic, economic, and/or, military relationship. Geez.

You know, in one way, they certainly DO have a serious desire to harken back to the literal days of yore: they sincerely hope and wish that the citizenry of this country was/is as ignorant as the peasantry during the Dark Ages.

Well, the true wingnut believers fit the bill. But I'd like to think the rest of us are at least a bit more intelligent, or at the very least, more mature.
Big Time: "Have a Seat, Soldier"

Introducing the KBR All-Electric "Shower:"

Shoddy electrical work by private contractors on United States military bases in Iraq is widespread and dangerous, causing more deaths and injuries from fires and shocks than the Pentagon has acknowledged, according to internal Army documents.

During just one six-month period -- August 2006 through January 2007 -- at least 283 electrical fires destroyed or damaged American military facilities in Iraq, including the military’s largest dining hall in the country, documents obtained by The New York Times show. Two soldiers died in an electrical fire at their base near Tikrit in 2006, the records note, while another was injured while jumping from a burning guard tower in May 2007.

And while the Pentagon has previously reported that 13 Americans have been electrocuted in Iraq, many more have been injured, some seriously, by shocks, according to the documents. A log compiled earlier this year at one building complex in Baghdad disclosed that soldiers complained of receiving electrical shocks in their living quarters on an almost daily basis.

But hey, "they volunteered," Big Time says.

Wouldn't surprise me at all if a Bush insider scores a multimillion dollar contract to "prove" that the electrical problems aren't "bugs," but "features."

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Bold Leadership the 19th Century

This sort of thing really is pretty pathetic, sort of like a ten year old realizing for the first time that "god" spelled backwards is "dog." Or maybe someone a little older staring at their hand and contemplating the multiverse therein, minus without the benefit of cannabis or even beer.

Link via LGM.

I mean, shit, if you're going to claim--with a straight face--that the GOP is "the party of civil rights" while ignoring or dismissing the Southern Strategy, Strom Thurmond, Reagan's endorsement of 'states rights' in Philadelphia, Mississippi...or the sorry legacy of almost two generations of shameless race baiting...then why not take it all the way and insist that there's nothing in the Constitution preventing a corpse from being on the national ticket. John McCain and John C. Freemont for victory...and a Transcontinental Iron Horse!
Lies as Punditry and Policy

The thing about compulsive liars is that...they lie compulsively. It can be a trifling matter. It can be a big deal. It can be a trifling matter within a big deal. But still, they lie. They can't help it.

Let's go to the videotape.

And thanks to YRHT for graphic data.
"Let's Not Bicker and Argue Over Who Killed Who."
an ongoing series

More from the "winning hearts and minds" front.

The George W. Bush think tank. It will be attached to the larger George W. Bush Institute:

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Mr. President, Could You Please Point to Your Popularity Ratings, and Measures of Personal Integrity?

King George has nothing to hide, invoking the divine right of kings Executive Privilege in order to withhold information regarding the outing of Valerie Plame, who only lead an effort to limit proliferation of WMD.

Meanwhile, in Iraq, "success" is defined as, you know, just a car bomb or so a day. I mean, c'mon, whaddya want? A functioning nation state?
Good Public Transit=Always Having a Designated Driver

While this Pravda-Upon-Hudson article focuses on the hedonistic aspect--imagine, young adults DRINKING with their only worry a hangover the next morning!-- it nonetheless points out, if only in an oblique way, that while reliable mass transit might encourage people to drink, it DEFINITELY keeps said people from driving drunk. And that's the point, right?
Just a Barrel of Laughs, That Mr. McCain Fella...

"Thanks! I'll be here all week--try the veal, you trollops and c*nts!"
Your Objective Media

Meet Ron Fournier, AP's new Washington Bureau Chief.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Channeling His Inner Herbert Hoover

Shorter Dubya: "Prosperity is just around the corner."

Shrub also channeled his inner pop-shrink, admitting that his reversal of the offshore drilling ban was little more than a psychological salve ("it will reverse the psychology"). Great, just what the country needs...a dry-drunk egoist with his own Dr. Phil complex.


Finally, apologies for the slow post day...a mix and match of not being quite one hundred percent (called in sick) AND I'm trying to knock out a few chores around the house as well.

Catch you tomorrow.
What's Wrong With This Picture?

Think Progress posted a photograph of a billboard in Orange County, Florida:

But I spotted the problem right away and corrected it:

Monday, July 14, 2008

Is There Anything More Dangerous Than a Wounded Nutria?

Each night the Jefferson Parish Nutria Posse gathers at the 17th St. Canal, mostly south of Veterans, where it's open season and no limit.
Well, Half of All Marriages End in Divorce, so...

Leave it to the Bush administration to decide that nothing says "here's to the bride and groom" quite like...cluster bombs.

I guess it's sort of a proactive if not preemptive action against bitter breakups...
McCain: I'm a Little Slow on This Whole 'Internets' Thing

...but I just got a great deal on this system, and I'll be up to speed just as soon as I get comfortable with the punch card stuff.
Cover Art

Here in the (red) sticks, issues of the New Yorker tend to arrive about a week late (that or the postman's reading my copies). And now that I subscribe, I don't like reading it online, because, you know, I don't want to spoil the experience.'ll probably be Friday before I get my hands on what's being described as "satire."

Okay. I'm not going to get too worked up about it...hell, if a New Yorker cover could somehow make the difference in what should be an Obama landslide, well...then we've got some REAL problems with the whole democracy experiment.

But I digress.

I decided to view the latest "satirical" cover as a challenge and came up with one of my own. Except--it's not satire. According to the president, it's Mission Accomplished.

But hey, he gave up golf. And that must've been doubly hard, what with Condi hitting the links and all.