Friday, April 07, 2006

And so now I'm announcing a sabatical of sorts.

It really doesn't do me any good to be getting my bile up about the clown show in D.C and it's depressing to think that Festus hasn't been laughted out of public office by now.

I give up.

I may be back should Festus get impeached by some miracle or should Fizgerald finally get off his ass and bring down some heavy weight on the Festus debacle.

If not I'll be hunkering down trying to figure out where outside of Atlanta I'm gonna hide come 9/11/2006. . .

Meanwhile here are the blog sites I steal most of this stuff off of. The Washington Monthly. The Carpet Bagger Report.
The Cunning Realist and White House Briefing.

Adios. . .

The biggest stones

A guy named Harry Taylor has the biggest stones in the entire United States of America. How he managed to find the balls to ask Festus point-blank a question that hundreds of professional journalists have failed to is simply jaw-dropping to me.

A striking exchange from President Bush's Q+A session with an audience in Charlotte, North Carolina on Thursday:

Q: You never stop talking about freedom, and I appreciate that. But while I listen to you talk about freedom, I see you assert your right to tap my telephone, to arrest me and hold me without charges, to try to preclude me from breathing clean air and drinking clean water and eating safe food. If I were a woman, you'd like to restrict my opportunity to make a choice and decision about whether I can abort a pregnancy on my own behalf. You are --

THE PRESIDENT: I'm not your favorite guy. Go ahead. (Laughter and applause.) Go on, what's your question?

Q: Okay, I don't have a question. What I wanted to say to you is that I -- in my lifetime, I have never felt more ashamed of, nor more frightened by my leadership in Washington, including the presidency, by the Senate, and --


THE PRESIDENT: No, wait a sec -- let him speak.

Q: And I would hope -- I feel like despite your rhetoric, that compassion and common sense have been left far behind during your administration, and I would hope from time to time that you have the humility and the grace to be ashamed of yourself inside yourself.

What is even more amazing is that you can watch it. It's almost sickening in it's grotesqueness. Festus seems so cocky, so smug, you can almost see the thought balloon over his head thinking "Who does this dickhead think he's talking to?"


L'estate c est moi

That's french for the state is me. Sounds more meaningful in french for some reason, I dunno. So as it turns out, Bush is OK with outing a CIA agent for purely partisan political reasons, and then lying about wanting to find out who did it. There are a wealth of blog sites that say it far better than I. Here's one:
CLASSIFIED LEAKS AS POLITICAL WEAPONS....Did George Bush authorize Scooter Libby to disclose classified information to the New York Times in 2003, as Libby alleges? Oddly enough, it turns out the White House isn't denying it:

A senior administration official, speaking on background because White House policy prohibits comment on an active investigation, said Bush sees a distinction between leaks and what he is alleged to have done. The official said Bush authorized the release of the classified information to assure the public of his rationale for war as it was coming under increasing scrutiny.

So Bush did know about the leak, and he did authorize it. What's more, his excuse is a simple one: he wanted to defend himself against attacks on his war policy, so it was OK.

That's exactly what happened, but it's remarkable that he's willing to admit it. Basically, Bush is saying that it's all right for him to selectively leak classified information whenever he feels it would help him politically.

Are conservatives OK with this? Should presidents be allowed to leak classified information whenever they're under pressure and need to strike back at their opponents? Even Richard Nixon didn't believe that (in 1960, anyway).
Here's the Bush comment that should, and probably will, be shown over and over again in the coming weeks and months.

"I don't know of anybody in my administration who leaked classified information. If somebody did leak classified information, I'd like to know it, and we'll take the appropriate action. […]

"I want to tell you something — leaks of classified information are a bad thing…. I've spoken out consistently against them and I want to know who the leakers are."

Monday, April 03, 2006

Press yawns

U.S. Pulls Plug on Iraqi Reconstruction

USA Today is the only paper to lead today with what, in our estimation, is pretty big news. The head of U.S. reconstruction efforts in Iraq has declared that America is done paying the bills to rebuild the country. "The Iraqi government needs to build up its capability to do its own capital budget investment," said Daniel Speckhard, director of the Iraq Reconstruction Management Office.

The government has slipped a noose around the $21 billion program that, according to the article, was supposed to "fix or build schools, roads, clinics, ports, bridges, government offices, phone networks, power plants and water systems." USA Today also quotes the top U.S. auditor for the program who says the reconstruction efforts were actually in major disarray, criticizing the program for "cost overruns, corruption, understaffing and bureaucratic infighting." There is less electricity capacity in Iraq now than before the war; while only 49 of 136 water projects and 300 out of 425 electricity projects have been finished to date. The program, which was supposed to possibly provide employment for 1.5 million Iraqis has only created 77,000 jobs.

"One needs to stop defining success in Iraq as the absence of terrorist attacks." Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld 12/5/2005

Yeah, let's add one more thing to that list of what doesn't define success in Iraq, Rummie boy. . .