Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Laura Bush's New White House Pastry Chef

File this under: You can't make this shit up.

The new White House pastry chef co-wrote a book...

Not kidding, y'all.

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Bush's Asshat Answer

Do you see an actual apology anywhere?

Snow: No Slight Intended by Bush's Gaffe

By BEN FELLER, Associated Press Writer

-- This one has gotten a little ic-ky for the White House.

Spokesman Tony Snow said Monday that President Bush had no intention of slighting the party now running Congress by referring to it as the "Democrat majority" — as opposed to the "Democratic majority" — in his State of the Union speech.

... "He spends an entire speech talking about reaching out and working together, and a few people who apparently haven't gotten the message run out and they complain that the letters "ic" were missing from 'Democratic,'" Snow said.

... Bush plans to speak to the House Democratic Caucus at its conference this weekend in Virginia.

On the president's schedule, that event is referred to as the "House Democrat Conference."

Adjectives aren't their strong suit, are they?

Idiots, the lot of them.

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Friday, January 26, 2007

Let's Make A Deal!

Scammed big time: a Christian psychotherapist; a Florida electronics specialist; a nurse and her doctor husband; and a former municipal director of economic development.

You may think you are too smart to be scammed. Well, John Worley had a practice as a Christian psychotherapist in Massachusetts when he received an e-mail from someone seeking his assistance to transfer 55 million American dollars out of South Africa to the United States “for onward dispatch and investment.” The writer of the e-mail purportedly had been the chief of security to the late Congolese President Laurent Kabila. His story was that he was on a mission to buy weapons for a force of elite bodyguards for Kabila when the president was assassinated. The money, more or less, became his, and he needed a partner with an overseas account to help in the movement of the money to the United States for a rich reward.

Hale, hearty and in perfect control of his senses, Worley, who had previously developed a psychological profiling tool designed to reveal a person’s “unique needs, desires and probable behavioral responses,” bought this cock-and-bull story for some strange reason and became the “overseas partner.” Worley was taken through twists and turns of lies, intrigue, false documents, bad checks and fake money orders until things fell apart. He used every penny he had or could borrow to fulfill his part of the deal. But there was really no deal. Whatever deal existed was in Worley’s imagination.

Despite a personal loss of close to $80,000, Worley got a two-year prison sentence for bank fraud, money laundering and possession of counterfeit checks. This is in addition to having to pay restitution of nearly $600,000 to several banks for the bad checks his “business partners” induced him to cash before wiring money to an account in a Swiss bank.

Read the rest of the story. If I had to guess the voting habits of most or all of these people, I'd pick Republican. I could be wrong, of course. Maybe they're all bleeding-heart, Commie pinko liberals...


Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Scooter's Trial: Too Confusing For The Washington Post & The New York Times?

Reports of the Scooter Libby trial in The Washington Post are... um, a mess of poorly constructed paragraphs and convoluted timelines... pretty much designed to keep the reader as confused as Libby's defense attorney hopes to keep the jury. And don't even get me started on The New York Times' crap.

My advice: read David Corn's reports.

Now, wasn't that as easy as Scooter Pie?

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

John McCain Slept During The State Of The Union Speech


Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Tonight's Big SOTU Lie Preview

Stop me if you've heard this one before...

19 terrorists may have planned to enter the country on student visas and blow up US cities.

Major news corps ran with this story yesterday, and each version contained fewer and fewer qualifications (modal auxiliaries like "may have" and "might have") until the story became "fact."

But Wait! Don't buy that duct tape and plastic quite yet!

"It never happened. There were no visas obtained and none were ever applied for," said one U.S. official knowledgeable about the plan who asked not to be identified.

Russ Knocke, a spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security, said there was no credible evidence to suggest any imminent threat to the United States.

"This was more aspirational than operational," he said
Read the whole sordid story of the big lie story.

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Monday, January 22, 2007

The "Last Two Paragraphs" Carlyle Group Bombshell

Bushbots know that most people only read headlines.

So... a news story about The Carlyle Group bidding on some random roofing company can easily hide the really big news in the last two paragraphs, and the Kool-Aid drinkers will miss it completely:

Carlyle Group has reportedly offered to buy Tribune Co.'s TV station group, according to various media reports, as Chicago-based Tribune (NYSE: TRB) weighs other bids for the company, whose properties also include newspapers and radio stations.

Carlyle officials declined to comment Friday on the Tribune deal.

Scary stuff.

Stuck at the bottom of the story.


Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Sermon On The Blog: Defeat & Desperation

This week's guest minister: Andrew Greeley

Bush is a picture of defeat

January 19, 2007
The presidential address last week was pathetic enough to make one feel sad for the poor dear man, as they say in the old country. With little emotional affect he read a lecture about his ''new strategy,'' which was in fact nothing more than a new tactic, growled at Iran and Syria, threatened the Iraqi government, and promised that the United States would emerge the winner in Iraq.

The notion that 20,000 more American troops would pacify Baghdad was farcical. If one really intended to stop internecine war between two religious tribes, one would have had to promise a lot more Americans. John Keegan, the famous English military historian and commentator, estimated that pacification would take 50,000 troops. Various American military experts suggested that it would require at least 100,000 soldiers and Marines. If one calculates two American soldiers or Marines for every 1,000 people in a city, as does the Army's counter-insurgency manual, 140,000 fighting men (which excludes the half of the troops in Iraq who are not combat soldiers) would be required.

The mountain labored and gave birth to a mouse.

Some of President Bush's allies in government and the media (David Brooks in the New York Times, for example) contend the ''new strategy'' must be tried if only because there's nothing else to do. Republican senators insist the Democrats in Congress must suggest an alternative strategy if they expect to be taken seriously. How are we going to solve the Iraq Problem unless we have a strategy?

There are two answers to such idiocy: 1) There isn't an alternative strategy or any strategy that will clean up the Iraq mess, and 2) the Democrats do have a strategy: phased withdrawal, beginning now.

In fact, no one knows what will happen when American troops leave or what Iran or the Arab countries would do. One does know that the Arabs and the Persians don't particularly like one another and that the Sunnis want to run Iraq again and have little interest in re-establishing a caliphate presided over by Osama bin Laden.

In any event, the Middle East is always unstable. The Iranian president is unpopular with his people because he has not been able to transform the economic chaos in his country. The various Islamic factions are not likely to try to induce stability in their part of the world as long as a U.S. army is occupying one of their countries.

The president's apocalyptic descriptions of Iraq after ''we'' leave are transcriptions of neo-conservative memos. The neo-cons are high-level thinkers and brilliant memo writers. They provided the ideas that the president and his aides (none of them high-level thinkers) needed to justify the war. Although many of them are distinguished graduates of the University of Chicago and similar institutions, they seemed to know very little history. None of them anticipated what a cursory reading of Winston Churchill's book on Iraq would have predicted: the present civil war.

The most pathetic part of the president's talk was the peroration, a listless reprise of all the neo-con cliches from the last six years: war on terror, enemies who want to destroy our way of life because they fear our freedom, global cultural confrontation, the crucial battle of our time. For motivation to support his "new strategy," the president had to fall back on the conventional wisdom of talk radio hosts, conservative editorial writers, and the gurus of the Fox network.

No one ever offers hard proof that these horrors would occur. The battling Shiites and Sunnis are interested in killing each other in a struggle for power for themselves in Iraq. They may hate Americans, but they hate each other more. The only ones who can destroy American freedom are government officials who claim the right to read our mail, listen to our phone calls, bug our e-mail, and deny some of us the right to have lawyers to defend us. They are the real enemy.

For all the bravado of his words, the president did not seem to have his heart in the speech. He tried to sound tough, but really seemed like someone who knew deep down that he was a beaten man.

Thus Endeth Today's Sermon.

Go forth today and recognize defeat and desperation when you see it on TV.

I mean it, damn it!

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Are You Fluent In Republican Doublespeak?

Even Arlen Specter was shocked by this statement from US Attorney General, Alberto Gonzales:

There is no expressed grant of habeas in the Constitution; there’s a prohibition against taking it away,” Gonzales said.

These asshats just get weirder and weirder.

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Gee, Did They Ask Martha Stewart's Jurors Questions like These?

Scooter Libby is on trial for lying. Not for outing Valerie Plame, and not for covering up BushCo's bogus Iraq War evidence.

He's on trial for lying. Period.

12:55 PM, from The Associated Press:

"Do any of you have feelings or opinions about the Bush administration or any of its policies or actions, whether positive or negative, that might affect your ability to give a former member of the Bush administration a fair trial?" U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton asked a panel of about 60 potential jurors.

Walton did not ask jurors their opinions on the Iraq war or whether they had family or friends who served in the military - questions Libby's lawyers had hoped would be asked.

The answers will be crucial for Libby, who is hoping that a sympathetic jury can be selected from a city where Democrats outnumber Republicans more than nine to one.

"Do any of you have any feelings or opinions about Vice-President Cheney, whether positive or negative, that might affect your ability to be fair in this case or that might affect your ability to fairly judge Vice-President Cheney's believability?" Walton asked.

Cheney is expected to be a key defence witness. Presidential historians believe it would be the first time a sitting vice-president testified in a criminal case.

Don't you wish everyone could be treated as fairly as Bush & Cheney?

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Rice In A Three-Way?

Surely, I'm not the only person disturbed by those words in this headline:

Rice to attend 3-way Mideast summit
By ANNE GEARAN, AP Diplomatic Writer

LUXOR, Egypt
- Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Monday she will bring together the Israeli and Palestinian leaders in the coming weeks for a summit dedicated to exploring ideas for an eventual Palestinian state.

The announcement came after Rice met with President Hosni Mubarak in this southern Egyptian town following a three-day visit to Israel and the Palestinian territories. Rice's talks were aimed at breathing new life into stalled Mideast efforts and bolstering the moderate Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, in his standoff with the Islamic militant group Hamas.

Rice said her talks during the visits dealt with laying the groundwork for "a political horizon that will lead to a Palestinian state."

"I will soon meet with (Israeli Prime Minister Ehud) Olmert and President Abbas to have discussions on the broad issues of that horizon, so we can work on the road map and try to accelerate the road map to move to a Palestinian state," she told reporters in Luxor.

She said the summit with Olmert and Abbas would take place "relatively soon" but did not set a date.

Hm. Guess I'm not the only person disturbed by that headline. Here's the new one: U.S. arranges three-way Mideast summit

By the way, that's a Reuters photo of Condi and a couple of Joint Chiefs, taken on Jan 11, 2007.

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Friday, January 12, 2007

21 Republican Senators Up For Re-election In 2008

Interesting, isn't it, how the Republican senators facing re-election in 2008 are beginning to challenge their own party's president?

Pass the popcorn.


Alexander, Lamar (R-TN)
Allard, Wayne (R-CO)
Chambliss, Saxby (R-GA)
Cochran, Thad (R-MS)
Coleman, Norm (R-MN)
Collins, Susan M. (R-ME)
Cornyn, John (R-TX)
Craig, Larry E. (R-ID)
Dole, Elizabeth (R-NC)
Domenici, Pete V. (R-NM)
Enzi, Michael B. (R-WY)
Graham, Lindsey (R-SC)
Hagel, Chuck (R-NE)
Inhofe, James M. (R-OK)
McConnell, Mitch (R-KY)
Roberts, Pat (R-KS)
Sessions, Jeff (R-AL)
Smith, Gordon H. (R-OR)
Stevens, Ted (R-AK)
Sununu, John E. (R-NH)
Warner, John (R-VA)

Hm. Makes you wonder just how far they'll go to get re-elected.

Very interesting.

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Bush's Surge Speech Made As Much Sense As This New Product

Same old shit.

Brand new package.

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Rightwingery Quantified

In a nutshell, rightwingers are afraid.

Of everything.

And their childhood fears turned them into... Republicans.

The Ideological Animal

"All people are born alike—except Republicans and Democrats," quipped Groucho Marx, and in fact it turns out that personality differences between liberals and conservatives are evident in early childhood. In 1969, Berkeley professors Jack and Jeanne Block embarked on a study of childhood personality, asking nursery school teachers to rate children's temperaments. They weren't even thinking about political orientation.

Twenty years later, they decided to compare the subjects' childhood personalities with their political preferences as adults. They found arresting patterns. As kids, liberals had developed close relationships with peers and were rated by their teachers as self-reliant, energetic, impulsive, and resilient. People who were conservative at age 23 had been described by their teachers as easily victimized, easily offended, indecisive, fearful, rigid, inhibited, and vulnerable at age 3. The reason for the difference, the Blocks hypothesized, was that insecure kids most needed the reassurance of tradition and authority, and they found it in conservative politics.

Psychology Today has the rest of the details.

Fear, itself... with lots of Republican panderers and other political predators salivating over the wallets of the fearful.


Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Bush's New Harriet Miers

When you've surrounded yourself with Nixon cronies, and you find you need a good lawyer, whom do you choose?

Of course, you choose a Nixon White House counsel with Reagan Iran Contra experience.

Fielding, a longtime Washington lawyer, will replace Harriet Miers, Bush's failed Supreme Court nominee and longtime adviser. She submitted her resignation Thursday after six years in the White House, and it will take effect Jan. 31.

Fielding served as President Reagan's counsel from 1981 to 1986, where one of his assistants was John Roberts, now the chief justice of the Supreme Court. Under President Nixon, Fielding served as deputy White House counsel from 1972 to 1974 and associate counsel from 1970 to 1972.

More recently, he served on the bipartisan panel that investigated the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

Fielding is a partner at the firm of Wiley, Rein and Fielding.

He is known as an expert in business litigation and government relations law, representing corporations in high profile regulatory investigations by the
Securities and Exchange Commission, the Justice Department and others.

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Monday, January 08, 2007

Rudy Giuliani & The Subliminal Nazi Name Game

I don't usually read crap in The New York Daily News unless it's just for fun, but this story about Rudy Giuliani's shady biz partnerships and other future campaign hurdles inadvertently linked Crude Rudy G. to infamous Nazi, Rudolf Hess.

"If you say 'Rudy,' everyone thinks of Rudy Giuliani," said Hess.

Actually, after reading that sentence, I couldn't help but think "Nazi."

Hey, Rudy! Whose bright idea was it to have your biz partner, Michael Hess, talk to the press?

You're not just the "Security Guru" who lost his campaign playbook. You're also the guy who chooses someone named Hess to speak for you.


Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Sermon On The Blog: Catchers In The Rye

I've been thinking a lot about Ashley X this week. You know, the little profoundly disabled girl whose parents and physicians have medically stunted her growth so that she's easier to manage at home she'll be more comfortable?

The best editorial I've read so far is from The Scotsman:

The story of Ashley, who was born with a rare brain condition that means she has the mental and physical capacity of a three-month-old baby, is, in fact, so multi-layered it has already engaged the brains of medical ethicists in the USA for more than a year. Caring for Ashley has always been unimaginably demanding: she cannot walk, talk, swallow food, hold her head up or roll over, and is reliant on her parents 24 hours a day. On the other hand, unlike many severely disabled children, she is not in any way aggressive. Her family call her their "pillow angel" because when she isn't moving to music, she lies so peacefully on pillows or cushions.

Her parents are clearly devoted to her, filling her room with stimuli and moving her from room to room as you would a baby so she can benefit from a degree of social interaction. Yet faced with the prospect of the early onset of puberty at the age of seven, they set out on a course of action which was to lead them to be vilified. They successfully lobbied doctors to undertake a package of procedures to ensure Ashley would never grow up: they removed her womb and her immature breasts, and fed her oestrogen to stunt her growth. --snip--

Given the daily pressure they are under, Ashley's parents' decision is entirely understandable. Less so is the attitude of the doctors who seem to have acceded so readily to their request. In the UK, any decision of this significance would have been made by a court, with a lawyer appointed to fight Ashley's corner, and ensure that both sides of the debate were heard. But in the US, the girl's fate was decided by a panel of experts at the Children's Hospital in Seattle after listening to a presentation by her father.

Moved by his rhetoric, they failed to challenge his often flimsy arguments. As a result no-one seems to have asked whether increased resources and home support might be a better solution to the problems caused by Ashley's growth than medical intervention. Or if the vetting and monitoring of external carers would be more likely to protect her from abuse than stripping her of her sexuality.

Ashley's parents have spent years crafting their image of their perfect "pillow baby." When that image began to mature (as all babies mature in one form or another), Ashley's parents became catchers in the rye... willing to do anything and everything humanly possible to keep her from diving off that metaphorical --or, more precisely, that all too human-- cliff of Holden Caulfield's nightmare: the inevitable loss of innocence.

My two cents worth: Life is messy. Life is painful. Otherwise, it's just existence.

Thus Endeth Today's Sermon.

Go forth today and ask yourself:

Whose innocence is really at stake here: Ashley's or her parents'?

And who will inherit Ashley X when her parents can no longer care for her? Her siblings? The state?

What would you do today if you were Ashley's parents?

Think about it.

I mean it, damn it!

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Saturday, January 06, 2007

BushCo PR Campaign "Success"


Just pitiful.

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Friday, January 05, 2007

President Of The Dirty Thirty

From CBS:

Starting off 2007, Mr. Bush's overall approval rating remains low at just 30 percent, his worst number ever in a CBS News poll, while his approval rating for handling Iraq is even lower at 23 percent — even after the execution of Saddam Hussein.
Congratulations, Dirty Thirty! You're this week's Backside of the Bell Curve Winners.

Enough said.

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Thursday, January 04, 2007

White House: "America Is Out Of Touch"

It just gets weirder and weirder.

According to Tony Snow, it's not the president who's out of touch.

It's you.

And me.

And the vast majority of Americans who recognize the Iraq War quagmire for what it is.

Oh and...

The president is smarter than all of us. Got that?

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Bush's New American Enterprise Institute Plan: 18 Months Of Human Sacrifice (Do The Math, Y'all)

It's January, 2007.

Imagine 18 months of a "sustained surge," during which Bush repeats the word "sacrifice" a Brazillion times... instead of "Stay The Course."

Which will bring us to August, 2008.

A few Johnnies & Jennies will come marching home...

Just in time for the 2008 election.

I'm sure George W. Bush thinks the Kagan/AEI Plan is positively brilliant.

Human Sacrifice for political gain is sick, twisted, and just plain cruel.

And the math is elementary, Bush.

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Rose Bowl Parade: IMPEACH

Did you catch this during the Rose Bowl Parade?

Amazing, isn't it, how quickly the networks switched cameras to avoid this banner?

No US Mail today...

I can't help but wonder if Gerald R. Ford would want his funeral associated with folks not receiving their Social Security checks, monthly medications, and who knows what else.


Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--

Monday, January 01, 2007

Bush & 2007 & His Hero, Bart Simpson

Presi-dimwit George W. Bush has "no comment regarding the 3000 deaths." I guess he was really paying attention during the introduction to The Simpsons' 100th episode, when Bart wrote these words on the chalkboard:

I will not celebrate meaningless milestones.

Eat your black-eyed peas today, y'all.

I mean it, damn it!

Best bar bet in the world: Delilah didn't do it.
Judges 16:19--