Saturday, December 29, 2007

Mr. President, You May Be Under Arrest...In Vermont

Out of all the states I've been to, not many have made the impression that Vermont has on my mind. From the scenic beauty to the friendly people, the incredible cheese and the amazing ice cream factory that is Ben and Jerry's, this small state packs a large punch. Well now it might get even better, as the town of Brattleboro considers issuing arrest warrants for George Bush and Dick Cheney.

From RawStory:

A group in Brattleboro is petitioning to put an item on a town meeting agenda in March that would make Bush and Vice President Cheney subject to arrest and indictment if they visit the southeastern Vermont community.

"This petition is as radical as the Declaration of Independence, and it draws on that tradition in claiming a universal jurisdiction when governments fail to do what they're supposed to do," said Kurt Daims, 54, a retired machinist leading the drive.

As president, Bush has visited every state except Vermont.

Now he'll probably never visit.

What this group wants to do is something that the Congress should have taken care of long ago. Bush and Cheney have committed so many crimes, you'd only have to prosecute them on a few to get a life sentence for both of them. The reasons to impeach and convict them are numerous yet they remain free, allowed to commit the wholesale destruction of our country.

So if Congress won't take care of business, then the towns and cities have a right, no, a duty to see that justice is served!

Attack Of The Mindless Clowns!

For Every Positive Kristol Story, There Will Be An Equal Negative Reaction

Sometimes the laws of physics can be a real pain in the ass. Though for some reason I thought they might not apply to people like Bill Kristol. Maybe it was because he supports people that do not believe in science, but as we know, science trumps all. So when Time Magazine made the smart decision to release William "The Bloody" from his contract and his ability to reach out to their readers, it made a progressive like me smile. Unfortunately, the supposed "heart" of the liberal media, the New York Times is determined to let his idiocy rein free on their own print and online space.

From The Huffington Post:

The Huffington Post has learned that, in a move bound to create controversy, the New York Times is set to announce that Bill Kristol will become a weekly columnist in 2008. Kristol, a prominent neo-conservative who recently departed Time magazine in what was reported as a "mutual" decision, has close ties to the White House and is a well-known proponent of the war in Iraq. Kristol also is a regular contributor to Fox News' Special Report with Brit Hume.

Maybe they just want to sell more newspapers with what seems like the "Glenn Beck" model. Well, it is their loss (not to mention the readership) and Kristol's gain, allowing him to spew his ridiculous banter on the pages of the national "paper of record." Maybe the Times is tired of that role, so then putting Kristol in as a columnist will set them up to lose the title.

Bush Hates Kids...Now With Disabilities

We already know he doesn't like children to have health care when their parents can't afford it. Despite a lot of pomp and a little fighting from the Democrats in Congress, they eventually bent over for the American people to take Bush's evildoing up the you know where. Now Bush has decided to save a little bit of money for the government (to pay for war evidently) and strip schools of their reimbursements to transport children with disabilities.

From The Washington Post:

WASHINGTON -- The Bush administration issued a new rule Friday that eliminates Medicaid reimbursement for certain transportation and administrative tasks undertaken by schools on behalf of students with disabilities.

A wide range of medical services are furnished to students in schools. Speech and physical therapy are typical examples. Medicaid, the government's health insurance program for the poor, helps pay for those activities for low-income children. It will continue to pay. However, the new rule will restrict when schools can bill the federal government for clerical duties associated with providing health care.

For example, schools can no longer expect Medicaid reimbursement for the planning of student immunizations. Schools also won't get paid for transporting students getting speech or physical therapy to school or back home.

So the savings come to a grand total of $3.6 billion, while the war in Iraq costs that much in about a week or so. Whenever you hear about priorities of the Republicans in office and especially of the President, just remember what matters most to them.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Kucinich Supporters Need To Lighten Up

Seriously guys, we all know your candidate has no shot at winning so come on, lighten up on this ad:

Aren't there bigger battles to fight than boycotting Pizza Hut? I already boycott them for their taste, leave the politics out of the pizza...or vice-versa or something like that.

The Only Place Ron Paul Will Is In A Fantasy Land

Ron Paul has proved he can earn gobs of money, the scorn from both the political left and right and millions upon millions of hits on the World Wide Web, but all the pundits want to know...can he make a statement in the World of Warcraft? Ok, most politicos have probably never heard of this, it is an interactive video game where people can fight each other online with mythical creatures and what not.

Since Ron Paul is having trouble breaking into any polls and has a slim chance at winning any sizeable blocs of votes come caucus and primary days, he's going to have to settle for a fantasy land....or at least a virtual march through this video game.

From RawStory:

On New Years Day, Paul-backing devotees of the online multiplayer game are planning a march through WoW's sprawling virtual universe to show support their candidate. Participants will be represented by one of an array of mythical avatars that populate the fantasy-themed game, in which players take on adventures and duel against rival characters.

WoW Insider, who first reported the story, says political activism should have a home in the game.

"Now, we here at WoW Insider are politically neutral when it comes to Warcraft, so we won't advocate joining these guys (and we also won't advocate forming a 'Horde for Hillary'guild to oppose them)," writes the blog's Mike Schramm. "But we are 100% in support of bringing widescale opinion expression of any kind into the game itself, so this should definitely be a fun event."

Personally, I'll be sleeping in for a good part of the day, but if video game players want to watch a few dozen or even a few hundred (if they're lucky) Ron Paul supporters use their computers or USB-connected video game controllers to 'march' on the World of Warcraft, then so be it. If I was Mr. Paul I'd take anything I could get....and apparently he does.

Tell Me Again Why Religion Trumps Spirituality

Back when I had a car, the most prominently displayed bumper sticker read "Religious people frighten me, spiritual people enlighten me." Although I have neither car or bumper sticker anymore, I still believe in what it said, especially when I see ridiculous outbursts of violence like that at the Church of the Nativity yesterday in Bethelem.

From The AFP:

BETHLEHEM, West Bank (AFP) — Seven people were injured on Thursday when Greek Orthodox and Armenian priests came to blows in a dispute over how to clean the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.

Following the Christmas celebrations, Greek Orthodox priests set up ladders to clean the walls and ceilings of their part of the church, which is built over the site where Jesus Christ is believed to have been born.

But the ladders encroached on space controlled by Armenian priests, according to photographers who said angry words ensued and blows quickly followed.

For a quarter of an hour bearded and robed priests laid into each other with fists, brooms and iron rods while the photographers who had come to take pictures of the annual cleaning ceremony recorded the whole event.

How frickin sad.

Scary Giuliani Supporters

I certainly do not want my Muslim friends going back to any caves. If there is anyone that should be buried in some deep underground chamber, it would be this guy along with his friend Rudy:

Miami Herald To Outsource Part Of Their News Dept.

Lou Dobbs must be frothing at the mouth right about now, once he hears that the Miami Herald is outsourcing comment moderation to online stories and their ad and design work for the news department to New Delhi. The new policy is in its testing phase and Executive Editor Anders Gyllenhaal said that they don't know how employment will be affected in the South Florida area.

From Business Week:

The Miami Herald is outsourcing some of its advertising production work to India, the newspaper's editor said Thursday.

Starting in January, copyediting and design in a weekly section of Broward County community news and other special advertising sections will be outsourced to Mindworks, based in New Delhi.

Um, if you outsource jobs to India for a local paper, chances are someone in the area is going to lose their position. I know the Miami Herald isn't the first, or second newspaper to do this, but come on, do we really need to send the work of a paper that covers a local area to a country several thousand miles away?

Rudy Rep'd For Oxycontin Makers

Rudy tries to keep his client list a secret, but as more investigations are done into his past, the more companies and countries of ill repute come out as having contracts with Rudy's security firm Giuliani Partners. The latest uncovering is that of his ties to Purdue Pharma, best known for its product Oxycontin which is basically a legal narcotic. It is used widely on the street as another drug to be abused, popularized by right wing bigot and radio host extraordinaire Rush Limbaugh. Purdue had some trouble with the Drug Enforcement Agency (leading to several guilty verdicts) and enlisted Rudy for name support.

From The New York Times:

A former top federal prosecutor, Mr. Giuliani participated in two meetings between Purdue officials and the head of the Drug Enforcement Administration, the agency investigating the company. Giuliani Partners took on the job of monitoring security improvements at company facilities making OxyContin, an issue of concern to the D.E.A.

As a celebrity, Mr. Giuliani helped the company win several public relations battles, playing a role in an effort by Purdue to persuade an influential Pennsylvania congressman, Curt Weldon, not to blame it for OxyContin abuse.

Despite these efforts, Purdue suffered a crushing defeat in May at the hands of Mr. Brownlee when the company and three top executives pleaded guilty to criminal charges.

Basically Purdue wanted Rudy to lobby for them (which is illegal in a case like this) to avoid prosecution and Congressional scrutiny. Thankfully, the DEA was better at prosecuting than Giuliani was at defending the drug dealers makers. Rudy declined to comment for the story, as he has for the rest of the inquiries into Giuliani Partners. He says he no longer does the day to day stuff with the company, but he was involved at the pertinent time and obviously the firm still sports his influential name.

Just another nail in the bastard's coffin.

Dodd Talks About His Friend Benazir With K.O.

Not only his friend, but a true leader of Pakistan is now dead and a country is in chaos. Dodd argues that the Pakistan election should be delayed in the wake of the news while aid to the country should not be limited.

(Forced) Ignorance Is Bliss

Does it befuddle a few of us progressives out there that some people are beginning to see Iraq in a new light, that perhaps things are getting better after all? Of course we know that things aren't hunky dorry, it is just that the traditional media isn't covering the news on the ground and likewise attributing some declines in violence to President Bush's surge when there is no way it could be the case. The unfortunate, yet obvious answer to me is that...well, people have short attention spans and if they don't see it on their nightly news for a few days or weeks then they'll assume the problem is over.

From Reuters:

WASHINGTON, Dec 19 (Reuters) - A recent decline in U.S. news coverage from Iraq coincides with improved public opinion about the war just as the 2008 presidential campaign heads to an early showdown, a study released on Wednesday said.

The study by the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism said the volume of coverage from Iraq fell from 8 percent of all news stories in the first six months of 2007 to 5 percent between June and October due mainly to a decline in news accounts of daily attacks.

The falloff coincided with a 14 percentage point climb -- from 34 to 48 percent -- in the number of Americans who believe the U.S. military effort in Iraq is going either fairly or very well, according to Pew.

While the amount of stories declines, the portrait of Iraq is merely being clouded, not turning as some conservatives would like to suggest. This diary from DailyKos is quite an interesting piece about the media and government spin, something to keep in mind as you tune in to CNN or ABC. Just because the media does or doesn't say something doesn't mean something else isn't happening. Never believe what you hear or read on face value, always look for many sources to corroborate a narrative to see if its true or not.

Fox News Takes A Page Out Of The Onion

If there are two "news sources" that I love and hate, they would be The Onion and Fox News. Both report a whole lot of bullshit and misinform gullible readers/viewers. The only difference is that Fox is trying to look professional while The Onion is just trying to make smart and snarky people laugh.

Take this example of "professionalism" and try it on for size. The Center for Media and Public Affairs recently released a study showing how the media has been denouncing Hillary, loving Obama....and that Fox News has the most balanced election coverage. Wait a sec, did I just have to write that? Did the sun reverse course last night?

Oh whew, no it is all good people. It turns out that this highly regarded George Mason institution is headed by none other than Dr. S. Lichter, who just happens to be a regular contributor guessed it, Fox News.

Nice try Mr. Ailes, come again to the real no spin zone soon.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Why Cenk Uyugr Will Not Support Hillary

He's eliminated her from his list and he ain't checking it twice, see why:

Huckabee The Hunter: Vote For Me Or Die!

Huckabee touts himself as a man of the cloth (an actual honest to goodness Baptist minister) who shuns science and is out to get the votes of the Republican party faithful. Not only does this candidate not know what the hell is going on around the world, he has taken Puff Daddy's "Vote or Die" initiative to a whole new level.

From Crooks and Liars:

Republican Mike Huckabee took his turn Wednesday, going on a pheasant hunt in Osceola, Iowa during which the Arkansas governor made it clear he is no stranger to the great outdoors.

Huckabee’s team brought back three pheasants — one of which the candidate claimed he personally shot — and promised they’d be “cleaned and eaten.”

Huckabee, who polls show continues to hold onto his lead in Iowa eight days before the state’s caucuses — also joked the trip could serve as a metaphorical campaign message. “Don’t get in my way,” he said while pointing to the three dead birds.

“This is what happens…You vote for me, you live. You don’t…there you go.”

If you see a case of buckshot and Mike Huckabee in the same room, you better run your ass off, whether if it is at a campaign rally or in a church.

Top Ten Myths About Iraq In The Last Year

Be sure to guard your eyes and ears carefully at the end of this year my friends. The traditional media and their conservative/corporate overlords will try to tell you certain things that fit their changing narrative about the war. The thing is, a narrative means that the media is trying to tell you a story, instead of the facts on the ground. Juan Cole examined the top ten myths about the media's coverage in Iraq and of course the White House's spin as well (in case the two aren't identical). Here are the top three from the list.

From Informed Comment:

3. Myth: The Iraqi north is relatively quiet and a site of economic growth. Fact: The subterranean battle among Kurds, Turkmen and Arabs for control of the oil-rich Kirkuk province makes the Iraqi north a political mine field. Kurdistan now also hosts the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) guerrillas that sneak over the border and kill Turkish troops. The north is so unstable that the Iraqi north is now undergoing regular bombing raids from Turkey.

2. Myth: Iraq has been "calm" in fall of 2007 and the Iraqi public, despite some grumbling, is not eager for the US to depart. Fact: in the past 6 weeks, there have been an average of 600 attacks a month, or 20 a day, which has held steady since the beginning of November. About 600 civilians are being killed in direct political violence per month, but that number excludes deaths of soldiers and police. Across the board, Iraqis believe that their conflicts are mainly caused by the US military presence and they are eager for it to end.

1. Myth: The reduction in violence in Iraq is mostly because of the escalation in the number of US troops, or "surge."

Fact: Although violence has been reduced in Iraq, much of the reduction did not take place because of US troop activity. Guerrilla attacks in al-Anbar Province were reduced from 400 a week to 100 a week between July, 2006 and July, 2007. But there was no significant US troop escalation in al-Anbar. Likewise, attacks on British troops in Basra have declined precipitously since they were moved out to the airport away from population centers. But this change had nothing to do with US troops.

Just remember, media/Bush Administration narrative versus facts. You can make up your own story after reviewing the latter.

The WWJD Doll

So two thousand and some years ago, little baby Jesus was a few days old and resting with his parents. So this time of year the Christian world rejoices in his birth, but how many remember who Jesus was and what he stood for? That is why the Unemployed Philsopher's Guild is here to help you and your conservative friends remember with this cute little doll. So for all of you warmongers out there, take a look at this doll and his bracelet before calling for all out war with whatever country you fear/despise/loathe the most.

Sagging Giuliani Returns To His Greatest Weakness

As Giuliani sinks in the polls and his dream to be supreme dictator President gets more distant from reality by the day, the former Mayor is pulling out all the stops to remind voters to be afraid of terror so that somehow they will think of him as a national savior. Of course we know he is the farthest thing from it, but that won't stop his latest ads that include a "noun, a verb and 9/11."

From RawStory:

As Giuliani steadies himself for expected defeats in next month's early contests in Iowa and New Hampshire, where he's hardly campaigned, he is launching the new ad to remind voters of his most prominent legacy. In the ad, he compares the police and firefighters at Ground Zero to the "Greatest Generation" of World War II veterans, plenty of whom are now retired and living in Florida -- another key early-state primary Giuliani is resting much of his hopes on winning.

"During the day of September 11, living through the things that I saw and observed. Immediately, when I saw people helping each other. I saw the picture of the firefighters putting the flag up at ground zero," the Giuliani says in the TV commercial. "I said these are the children or grandchildren or great-grandchildren of the greatest generation. They have the same resolve. The same understanding."

The ad starts Friday and is scheduled to run on nationally on cable's Fox News Channel. It also will air in New Hampshire, and, for the first time, Giuliani will expand his advertising to Florida. He has made that state a priority but his monthslong double-digit lead in that state's polls has narrowed as rival Mike Huckabee gained ground.

As RawStory notes, William "The Bloody" Kristol slammed the ad on Fox News as much of the Democratic establishment has done for quite some time now. Kristol is one to talk, but I have no problem with anyone beating Rudy over the head with his ridiculous campaign theme of "9/11, 9/11, 9/11."

Oh and of course some of those firefighters have a thing or two to tell Rudy about what really went down before, during and after the towers fell on that September day.

Con Ed Finally Owns Up For Steam Pipe Blast

The hot weather of July feels like a mirage to our winter weather of late December, but for one steamy day on Lex and 41st, the steam pipe explosion that occurred is still etched into the minds of thousands. At first Con Edison took no responsibility and tried to hamper an investigation into the cause of the blast, but public outcry let it continue. Now that five months has passed, a new report sheds light on their role in a blast that killed one woman and injured dozens, one of them so severely he was put into a coma so that he would not feel the pain of the burns.

From The Daily News:

Con Edison crews pumped the epoxy into a nearby leak four months before the July 18 blast, but no one noticed some of it seeped into the "steam trap" valve - leading to catastrophe when the 20-inch steampipe filled with water.

"It's a combination of clogged traps and elevated water levels underneath the ground," Con Ed spokesman Michael Clendenin said last night. "We think the clog was from an epoxy resin that was used to seal a flange."

The clump of resin led to a catastrophic condition called "water hammer." That blew the 87-year-old pipe wide open at E. 41st St. and Lexington Ave.

This development should open the floodgates to lawsuits against the utility giant from all of those that were affected by the blast, whether it was bodily injury or loss of income by the area's businesses. They definitely deserve it and while spokesman Michael Clendenin says that over a thousand traps were investigated and that they found no other problem, why should we believe him or his employer? The lawyer of the two badly-injured victims doesn't trust them, and neither should the rest of us.

Sounds like it is time to demand an independent investigation.

Glenn Beck Is A Tool...Now In A Good Way

Glenn wanted to talk trash about who owns certain media companies around the country, but when his guest Norman Solomon unleashed some truth about Glenn's CNN owners, he got a little bit testy, as you can see in the video below. Mr. Beck has always been a tool in my eye, but now he got a little taste of having the mirror be shown back on him...and all at his expense.

Good job Mr. Solomon!

Future Idaho Cops Belittle Our Veterans

Supposedly the Idaho Police Officer Standards and Training Academy produces the state's finest in law enforcement for the next generation. They graduated 43 cops this year and their class president got the slogan "Don't suffer from PTSD, go out and cause it," to be their motto. That is just so wrong on so many levels.

From Yahoo News:

Each class at the Idaho Police Officer Standards and Training Academy is allowed to choose a slogan that is printed on its graduation programs, and the class of 43 graduates came up with "Don't suffer from PTSD, go out and cause it."

According to the Veterans Association, tens of thousands of U.S. soldiers suffer from PTSD, which causes nightmares, flashbacks and physical symptoms that make sufferers feel as if they are reliving trauma, even many years later. Crime, accidents and other trauma can cause it in civilians.

Ada County Sheriff Gary Raney, who attended the Dec. 14 graduation, pointed out the slogan to the academy's director, Jeff Black, minutes before the ceremony began, Raney said. A photograph of the program was e-mailed anonymously to news outlets throughout the state.

While the director dismissed the comment and said he does not condone it, he refused to release the name of the graduate that brought it up. So much for holding those that enforce the law to be accountable for their actions. So much for caring about the tens of thousands of soldiers being damaged by PTSD from their experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan on an ongoing basis or the hundreds of thousands of veterans that have come before them.

So much for Idaho's police force 'protecting and serving,' it sounds more like they are ready to inflict terror on citizens instead of being trusted servants of the law. So much for respect. So much for dignity. So much for honor.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

What Did Rudy Get For Christmas

Now that all the presents are opened, it is time for all the kids to compare what they got from Mom, Dad and Uncle Joe. For me, comparison time was three weeks ago during Chanukah....and add ten to twenty years on to that when I had that mentality. Of course, Rudy can act like an angry (yet scarily powerful) five year old child.

This photo from Indecision 2008 is almost too good to be true. They are asking people to fill in the blank for the caption to this photo.

I'm thinking Rudy got some sort of mind-scrambler, or perhaps a device to rig votes in New Hampshire and Florida. He knows he needs a miracle to win and gain momentum for the primary calendar, so he will have to pull a huge rabbit out of the hat to convince (or force) the masses to vote for him.

Pirates And Emperors, Cut From The Same Cloth

Merry Christmas From Your Favorite Bloodthirsty Mercenaries

I know Christmas is technically over, people are stuffed full of ham and other Christmas noshes. Others are busy shopping their brains out looking for discounts and driving up their credit card debt. It is a busy time of year indeed, but also one for reflection and cheery pats on the back. Yule time as they say, right? Well the good folks at Blackwater USA want to join in on the good cheer and show how much they care. So try not to let your nausea get the best of you with this.

From TPM Muckraker:

Some excerpts:

GIVING... is something with which all Peace Keepers are very familiar... Giving time in ways that most do not understand... Giving up pleasures and presence of family to patrol streets, conflicts and battlefields... Giving up comforts that most take for granted... Giving companionship to a fellow Peace Keeper because you are together in the same endeavor at home and on foreign fields... Giving support to those in need of assistance... Giving life and limb, risking injury or death, so that the people they love and care for may continue to live in peace and safety in their world.

Of course, T.X. Hammes and other actual defense experts don't believe Blackwater and the U.S. military "are together in the same endeavor." Rather, Blackwater's wilding out makes things worse for the U.S. military in Iraq. But in Moyock, NC, nothing says Christmas like cynical exploitation of the troops!

These are the Peace Keepers... These are my Parish...

We are in a season of good wishes and good cheer for most of us. Peace Keepers have to be just as vigilant this season as in any other season. Evil and tragedy do not take the day or the season off... but indeed they are ever present... and must be resisted at all times.


Peace Keepers you have loved me without even knowing that I existed... You have loved to the highest degree of which the human being is capable... You have laid your life and being on the line of defense between good and evil and you do all that you can to stop evil where you are... and rush to the scene when you are not already there...

There is more in there, but frankly that is all I can bear, especially with my still-full stomach. Peace keepers eh? More like peace disrupters, deliverers of evil and as for laying down lives....well so what if they are innocent Iraqis, for Blackwater, it is all about the spoils of war.

The only thing those bastards give is heartache, loss of loved ones and misery across Iraq. They take far more.

Congresswoman Gillibrand Attacked For Being Pregnant

See, it is when I hear stories like these that proves upstate NY can be a scary place. The city is a much more comforting and secure environment. Apparently some of Congresswoman Gillibrand's constituents (or at least one) does not approve of her first term because of her being a woman and the fact that she can conceive a child. So much for debating policy positions and her ability to represent her district.

From Group News Blog:

First term Congresswoman Kristen Gillibrand (D-NY20), in a highly-vulnerable district in New York's Hudson Valley, is being attacked, not for her politics, not for her stand against the Iraq war, not for the earmarks she's bringing home including money for rural broadband development.


She's being attacked because she and her husband have conceived a child.
The Glenn Falls Post Star (Letters to the Editor)

There are many occupations suitable for women and their physical attributes. Carrying a weapon while serving in the Armed Forces and firefighting are not suitable lines of work for women to prove that they are physically equal to men. How many male police officers feel comfortable with a 100 pound female backup?

And now, I have to add serving in the U.S. House and Senate as an occupation that may not be suitable for women.

Ms. Gillibrand's current pregnancy makes a strong case for my opinion. Ms. Gillibrand was elected to serve her constituency, and while she is away from her elected office she cannot perform those duties. The taxpayers who were duped into voting for her will have to pay for her medical benefits. Yes, Mr. and Mrs. Taxpayer, Ms. Gillibrand receives excellent health benefits, courtesy of her constituents. We will be without representation in Congress for a time leading up to and following the child's birth. There will be times when she and the new baby will visit doctors. You can add those days to the total that she will not be serving her constituents.

The current base salary (2006) for members of the House and Senate is $165,200 per year. I wonder if Ms. Gillibrand will do the right thing and reimburse the U.S. Treasury in the amount of $452.60, her daily salary, for each day that she is unable to perform her elected duties. For some reason, I doubt it.


This just goes to show that the reason why Republicans are failing so miserably now is that not only are they out of touch with most of America, they aren't even living in the Information Age, this is more of a Stone Age mentality than anything else. Perhaps Mr. Blachut would prefer that Kristen be in the kitchen cooking him dinner. Too bad for him she is representing New York's 20th District with a progressive agenda that the majority of people are getting behind.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Fighting The War On Greed

If you've seen the video, you know Henry Kravis is a prime example of what is wrong with greed in America. Here's Brave New Films' winner of what to do if you had Kravis' house for a day:

Rudy The Red-Nosed Republican

An original parody, from me to Rudy Giuliani.

You know the tune:

Rudy, the red-nosed Republican
had a very checkered past.
And if you ever saw him,
you'd see him stickin' Judy in the...

All of the other candidates
used to laugh and call him names
So poor little ol' Rudy
would just lie and exaggerate his no good name

Then one foggy Caucus Eve
Reagan came to say:
"Rudy with that 9/11 slight,
won't you guide the Grand Old Party tonight?"

Then all the candidates loathed him
as they shouted out with scorn,
Rudy the red-nosed Republican,
the firefighters wish you were never born!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Bush Looks To Do As Much Int'l Damage As Possible In '08

Watch out citizens of the world, George Bush may be coming to a country near you in the upcoming year. Two thousand and eight may be his last full year of being President (thank god) but it is shaping up to be his busiest when it comes to international travel. Bush has more than a dozen countries on his itinerary already and could add to it. The White House claims to be on a mission to expand alliances with other countries, but we all know he really doesn't give a flying rat's ass about other countries (or people besides himself for that matter).

The truth is that people hate him outside our country than within. Even though he is liked by less than a third of all Americans, people despise him far more anywhere from Europe to the Far East and to the south of us in Latin America. No one likes our scoundrel of a President. And why would any sane individual?

His foreign policy has decimated any type of goodwill exhibited to us after 9/11. Bringing war, occupation and conquest to the Middle East is no way to win over friends in the region or anyone that likes peace and harmony among nations. People expect tyranny from some countries around the globe, but certainly not the United States. World citizens have looked to us in the past as a beacon of hope, freedom and liberty.

Now all they see is a growing despot.

If anything comes from these trips, it'll be ridiculous nicknames for various heads of state that have the misfortune to meet our god-awful President.

And The Award For Sleaziest Conservative Of 2007 Goes To....

From TPM:

Okay, the big moment has arrived. Or at least the biggest moment till December 31st. As you know, TPM is running the First Annual Golden Duke awards, named in honor or iconic political crook Randy "Duke" Cunningham and awarded to the biggest political crooks, scoundrels and bamboozlers in six separate categories. TPM Readers sent in dozens of great nominations measuring the comparative muckliness and bamboozlism of TPM favorites like Larry Craig, Alberto Gonzales, Bradley Schlozman and many, many others. And now we've chosen the official nominees.

Its "Pay To Play" For Giuliani, Corporate Welfare Is His Game

Rudy may like to talk tough to his fans but behind the scenes he coddles his favorite companies with generous tax breaks. Poor people should always pay their dues, but if you want to fork over a large donation to Rudy's campaign then you can get whatever you want. This is business as usual for Giuliani, nothing that isn't to be expected.

From The Daily News:

The News examined seven mega-corporations that won Giuliani tax breaks and are among his top donors.

The seven companies are: the Mercantile Exchange, Credit Suisse/First Boston, Merrill Lynch, Ernst & Young, Fidelity Investments, Citigroup/Travelers/Smith Barney and Bear Stearns.

In 1994, the Mercantile Exchange got a plateful of city and state tax breaks worth $183.9 million in a deal brokered by Giuliani and then-Gov. Mario Cuomo. The deal required the exchange to keep 8,100 jobs in the city, but new jobs were not required to collect the benefit.

Today, Richard Schaeffer, chairman of the exchange, is a major Giuliani fund-raiser who says he has raised "hundreds of thousands of dollars" for Giuliani as an individual and not for any potential benefit to the exchange.

Oh as an individual he might not benefit...directly that is. It doesn't take a mensa genius or a rocket scientist to figure out that people like Schaeffer make his money from the corporations that got fed from the city teat care of Mayor Giuliani. Rudy got to look good back then for a small price as Mayor and now to be partially bankrolled by some of New York's largest corporate goons.

Expect more of the same from Rudy, whether in his business or if, god forbid, he made it to the White House.

More Tricks And Slips From Hillary

Oh Hillary we know you aren't perfect (though you try to act like it on the campaign) and a few mistakes are ok from time to time but please, please do not take credit for things that aren't yours. With ten days to go until the Iowa caucus, every candidate wants to look their best in front of their potential caucus-goers and voters. Yet to inflate ourselves beyond what reality dictates is Republican-esque and not fit for any Democratic candidate.

From The Syracuse Post Standard:

In a statement announcing "Congressional passage of millions in funding for Central New York," the senator listed money for a sewage project in the "village of Oswego" and $1.5 million for "Steel Creek" in an unidentified location.

Neither project is in Central New York. The village of Oswego does not exist. There's a city of Oswego and a town of Oswego in Oswego County. It turns out the money was destined for the village of Owego, in Tioga County, in the state's Southern Tier. There's also a Steele Creek in the Mohawk Valley.

Although the statement sent out by Clinton's office was officially a joint release with Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., Schumer's office noted Clinton prepared and sent out the list.

Now this is a small mistake and one that some can harp on and accuse her of being a carpet-bagger, but that is quite a stretch unless your name is Michelle Malkin. Now taking credit for things that are not your own is a different matter:

Rep. James Walsh, R-Onondaga, was unhappy to see Clinton claiming credit for delivering $23.8 million to the Syracuse VA Medical Center for a new spinal cord injury center, and more than $5 million to Hancock Field Air National Guard Base, and several other projects in Onondaga County.

Walsh's chief of staff, Dan Gage, said he called Clinton's office to complain, noting the congressman was the one who advocated for the projects from the beginning and worked hard to obtain the money.

Even after Gage's call, Clinton and Schumer continued to take credit for the earmark funding, sending out new statements on Wednesday and Thursday.

Now that type of stuff should be below that of a Presidential candidate, but Hillary certainly does like to stand out.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Ron Paul Presses The Meat

I was about to pay for coffee this morning when I found this written on one of my dollar bills, it certainly qualified for my first laugh of the day but it is Ron's positions, and his hypocrisy that makes me chuckle most. Tim Russert fails to counter him on relevant points, but that isn't anything special for Timmy boy.

Well Paulites, come hither and attack me for those earmarks of Paul's, or simply sidestep the subject as most of you do.

Whatever Happened To All That Cash We Gave To Pakistan?

Remember how we were going to support Pakistan's efforts to help us fight that "War on Terror" by giving them a billion dollars a year in taxpayer money? Well it turns out that the money might not have been going to the projects we thought they would. Officials in Islamabad have a strong suspicion that we might have been financing a sizable chunk of Musharraf's tiff with India. While Pakistan claims that the U.S. isn't doing enough to help them specifically with counter- insurgency gear, the NY Times makes clear that both sides know the job Bush promised would be taken care of is......well, not being taken care of.

From The New York Times:

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — After the United States has spent more than $5 billion in a largely failed effort to bolster the Pakistani military effort against militants from Al Qaeda and the Taliban, some American officials now acknowledge that there were too few controls over how the money was spent. The strategy to improve the Pakistani military, they said, needs to be completely revamped.

In interviews in Islamabad and Washington, Bush administration and military officials said they believed that much of the American money was not making its way to frontline Pakistani units. Money has been diverted to help finance weapons systems designed to counter India, not Al Qaeda or the Taliban, the officials said, adding that the United States has paid tens of millions of dollars in inflated Pakistani reimbursement claims for fuel, ammunition and other costs.

“I personally believe there is exaggeration and inflation,” said a senior American military official who has reviewed the program, referring to Pakistani requests for reimbursement. “Then, I point back to the United States and say we didn’t have to give them money this way.”

Of course all of this is being mentioned by anonymous sources, too afraid to come out publicly and confront their bosses at the State Department and the rest of the Bush Administration. Pervez, a known dictator and general thug is being accused by his opponents of using the funds to prop up his own corrupt government.

Wherever this money is going, we can be sure that Al-Qaeda is alive and well up in their northern mountains that buttress Afghanistan. Billions of dollars wasted, just like the hundreds of billions wasted overall in Iraq and across the world where Bush waves his sword at the global community. It is another shameful testament to his horrific Administration.

Cheney Hack Will Publish Bush Hack's Book

When Karl Rove set out to find a publisher for his yet-to-be-written memoirs working for George Bush, he thought a major house would pay him millions for his work of (bullshit) art. Well after more than a month, he had to take the easy way out, having VP Dick Cheney's chief hack Mary Matalin publish it instead.

The NY Observer could not find out what the deal was worth, but somehow the AP beat them to it, discovering a $1.5 million payout for whatever garbage he writes down for the few GOP faithful that so desire to read what the evil genius nutcase has in store for the conservative pages of Threshold Editions.

From the AP:

NEW YORK (AP) — GOP strategist Karl Rove has agreed to write about his years as an adviser to President Bush in a deal worth over $1.5 million with former colleague Mary Matalin's conservative imprint at Simon & Schuster, officials said Friday.

Rove, the architect of Bush's 2000 and 2004 presidential campaigns and one of the most influential political advisers of his time, signed the deal with Threshold Editions, the imprint's publisher and executive vice president Louise Burke said.

"All of us at Threshold are thrilled to publish the book from the man who had the president's ear for two terms," Burke said.

Thrilled eh? What do they possibly think Rove will write? There is no way in hell he would ever write the truth, lest he personally indict himself concerning all of his and the Administration's crimes against this country. Robert Barnett realized that reputable publishers knew this tidbit already and that is the reason why it took so long to ink a deal, a deal with a piece of the right wing echo chamber.

Make Darfur Matter in 2008!

Giuliani Still Lying About Those Radios

Rudy got his chance to blab on the Sunday talk show circuit via the good will of George Stephanopoulos and ABC. George mustered a few tough questions, even doing some follow up work when Rudy lied to him about the radios that malfunctioned on September 11th, resulting in the deaths of hundreds of firefighters.

From ThinkProgress:

Today on ABC’s This Week, host George Stephanopoulos pushed former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani on why the radios for the 9/11 firefighters didn’t work. Giuliani dodged the question, claiming that it would have been “impossible” to have given them working radios:

STEPHANOPOULOS: They make two main charges. Number one, that those firefighters in the north tower, many of them lost their lives because their radios didn’t work. They also say you ended the recovery efforts too soon.

GIULIANI: Well, the radios that you’re talking about weren’t put online for three, four, five years after. So, it would have been impossible for me to have those radios ready. It took the city two or three more years…

STEPHANOPOULOS: But they had malfunctioned in 1993.

GIULIANI: But even with the new equipment, it took another two or three years for those radios to be put online. So it would have been impossible for us to have gotten them online before that, given the fact that it took so long afterwards.

Now we know George wouldn't go farther than that with the former Mayor, so we here in the blogosphere had to do a little bit more, along with the group of firefighters assembling to fight him tooth and nail if his candidacy is to advance past Iowa and New Hampshire.

Of course, the Real Rudy didn't give a crap about those radios, he pulled a George Bush and issued a no-bid contract instead.