w/ Brad & Desi
NATIONWIDE STUDY FINDS ALMOST NO VOTER FRAUD
Just 10 cases of in-person impersonation in all 50 states since 2000...
VIDEO: 'Rise of the Tea Bags'
Brad interviews American patriots...
'Democracy's Gold Standard'
Hand-marked, hand-counted ballots...
GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...
|MORE BRAD BLOG 'SPECIAL COVERAGE' PAGES...|
A majority of Americans (54%, up from 41% just two weeks ago) now believe the Iraq War was a mistake. 55% of them also now understand what Howard Dean was telling them months ago, that this War made the U.S. "less safe", according to a new Gallup poll released today.
Meanwhile, along with the majority of Americans, Bush's old friends continue to desert him in droves.
Lee Iacocca, who appeared in campaign commercials with Bush four years ago, is now endorsing John Kerry instead, due to Bush's failed record on jobs for Americans during his term.
And over in the jolly old U.K., Bush's only real partner in the mirage-like "Coalition of the Willing" also has a thing or two to say about the Bush Administration's "unacceptable" plans for military trials for detainees in Gitmo.
"Fair trial is one of those, which is the reason we in the UK have been unable to accept that the US military tribunals...offer sufficient guarantees of a fair trial in accordance with international standards."
Five Britons were released from Guantanamo in March and several alleged mistreatment by US interrogators.
The Pentagon has yet to hold any trials under the proposed rules.
It says trials would be fair, but that the entire process would be controlled by the Defence Department and there is no right to appeal to a civilian court.
Sounds "fair" to me.
How's old Dubya standing up under the mounting pressure? He's currently in Ireland, heading towards a NATO summit as he continues to move closer and closer to the same positions on Iraq that Kerry has been advocating for months.
According to this AFP article, he "snapped" today at one of the Irish reporters: "I wouldn't have made the decisions I did if I didn't think the world would be better."
And, though it'll likely surprise the Fake Conservative shadow boxing dead enders out there who believe that folks like me "hate George W. Bush" and think he's the devil --- an argument that they likely project on us based on their own true emotional disdain for the previous Whitehouse occupant, and it's the only argument left for them to try --- I actually believe Bush when he makes such statements as the above.
I believe he did think this action in Iraq would "make the world better". The real problem, however, is that he was so horribly wrong. He listened to nobody who was trying to tell him otherwise thousands of dead bodies ago, and to this day he can't seem to admit the undisputable fact: He and the NeoCons that brought us here, (along with the support of plenty of Democrats and the supposedly "liberal" Media who rolled over for him during a completely Republican controlled Congress) simply and plainly...blew it.
And now it's finally time that the piper is being paid. End of story.
Speaking of how out of touch with reality this Administration is, it looks like Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz is still in a world of his own.
In April of this year, while testifying to congress, Wolfowitz estimated the casuality count at the time to be "approximately 500". At that time, of course, the second highest ranking Pentagon official, was only off by "approximately" 200 US dead bodies.
On Tuesday, he was at it again, telling Congress that one of the reasons things seem so bad in Iraq is, of course, the fault of the media.
"Part of our problem is a lot of the press are afraid to travel very much, so they sit in Baghdad and they publish rumors. And rumors are plentiful."
He said that on Tuesday. And rumor has it that the next day, some 100 were killed in Iraq, and more than 400 wounded in 5 seperate coordinated bombings throughout the country. Damn that lazy media!
Rumor also has it that, as of Wolfowitz' testimony to congress on Tuesday, a total of 34 TV and print journalists from all over the world have been killed in Iraq since the war began. Add news employees to that (drivers, interpreters etc.) and there have been 46 killed, along with several kidnappings tossed in for good measure. Perhaps if they weren't so "afraid to travel very much" everything would be better.
Can someone please explain to me why this guy, second only at the Pentagon to the great strategist Donald Rumsfeld, still has a job???
And while you're at it, please let me know what Rummy is still doing there as well!
Both appointed, and currently retained by George W. Bush. It's the judgement, Stupid.
Just before the war began, the Bush Administration hoped to ease the concerns of Americans by openly sharing their assessments of the costs of occupying and reconstructing Iraq after our "victory".
The Vice President, Dick "Fucking" Cheney said in March 2003, "I really do believe we will be greeted as liberators."
Defense Secretary, Donald Rumsfeld predicted in February 2003 that the war "could last six days, six weeks. I doubt six months."
And Deputy Defense Secretary testified to congress that Iraq "can really finance its own reconstruction, and relatively soon."
What's to worry about?
On April 23, 2003, on the eve of war, Andrew Natsios, head of the U.S. Agency for International Development re-assured Americans on Nightline. This reminder comes courtesy of our friends at The O'Franken Factor:
ANDREW NATSIOS: No, no. This doesn't even compare remotely with the size of the Marshall Plan.
TED KOPPEL: The Marshall Plan was $97 billion.
ANDREW NATSIOS: This is 1.7 billion.
TED KOPPEL: All right, this is the first. I mean, when you talk about 1.7, you're not suggesting that the rebuilding of Iraq is gonna be done for $1.7 billion?
ANDREW NATSIOS: Well, in terms of the American taxpayers contribution, I do, this is it for the US. The rest of the rebuilding of Iraq will be done by other countries who have already made pledges, Britain, Germany, Norway, Japan, Canada, and Iraqi oil revenues, eventually in several years, when it's up and running and there's a new government that's been democratically elected, will finish the job with their own revenues. They're going to get in $20 billion a year in oil revenues. But the American part of this will be 1.7 billion. We have no plans for any further-on funding for this. [emphasis added]
Well, I think we all now believe the part about "no plans". Other than that, it's the judgement, Stupid.
And somehow, there are still Bush Dead-Enders out there who believe that the judgement of this Administration has merited a second term. I'll have a bit of whatever they're smoking please.
If you happen to be one of those Dead-Enders, who think the judgement --- or the extraordinary display of lack thereof --- of this Administration has gotten any better with experience, that they've learned their lesson, and are now offering America a more honest assessement of real world events, think again.
A great catch by frequent BRAD BLOGGER Jaime! Seems that Moviefone (323-777-FILM out here in L.A.) claims that Fahrenheit 9/11 is rated NC-17! As of 5:13pm PDT, I can confirm that indeed that's the case!
That's a far cry, of course, from the R rating that Moore and company were trying to have changed recently (and unsuccessfully) to PG-13!
Moviefone is a partnership out here with ABC-7 TV, and online (where Moviefone.com has the film correctly listed with an R rating) they are partners with AOL/Time-Warner.
Does Moore take shots at ABC and/or AOL/Time-Warner in the film? Or is it just an outrageously unfortunate oversight for Moviefone?
UPDATE - 5:46pm PDT: A few minutes after sending this info to both Drudge and Michael Moore, the rating has now been changed at 777-FILM to the correct R rating in Los Angeles! Our scoopster Jaime tells the BRAD BLOG that the NC-17 had been in place, to the best of his recollection, all week long.
UPDATE - 6/25/04 5:18pm PDT: Duh. Not sure what I was thinking above when asked about Moore taking shots at ABC! ABC-7, which co-sponsors Moviefone, is of course owned by Disney! You may recall all the nice things that Moore had to say about Disney when they refused to meet their contractual obligation to distribute F9/11. And, as I pointed out, the website version of Moviefone (a partnership with AOL) had the correct rating for F9/11 --- it was only the phone version, co-sponsored by ABC, that had been giving the NC-17 rating to F9/11 all week. We report, you decide.
I guess it's not just the "Liberals" who enjoy using profanity, as some Rightwing Dead Ender BRAD BLOG commenters delude themselves by posting here.
Looks like the Vice-President, he of the "Major League Asshole...'Big time!'" sound-bite caught on tape during the 2000 Campaign is starting to fall apart just like his "Boss".
Though the Senate was not technically "in session" when Dick Cheney reportedly said "Fuck you" or "Fuck off" or "Go fuck yourself" (according to various accounts) to Sen. Patrick Leahy during a "class photo" taken earlier today, I'm certain that the Veep would never skirt the "rule of law" by using such profanity during an actual session!
(Thanks to JohnHP for the earlier heads-up!)
...Just buried with a few things. Hope to be back on the usual Blog Job shortly...Until then: OPEN THREAD! What's on your mind? Hit the COMMENTS button and discuss, beat the crap outta each other, speculate on who will be the next Vice President, recommend a movie, tell us what's on your mind, or any other such mischief that you like!
Several years from now, when you look back and wonder how it ever happened, you'll be able to look back at this, and recognize that you did nothing to stop it. In fact, you allowed 99 Senators from both political parties to suggest that "this is something the public wants."
Or, you can Call or Email your Senator or Congressmen, and tell them to knock it off and stop censoring your public airwaves through the slow, chilling oppression of free speech.
Special Added Bonus Link from Bizarro World!:
Video of US Attorney General John Ashcroft singing his song "Let the Eagle Soar" during a speech!
It's a sad state of affairs in America when the fake news show, The Daily Show on Comedy Central is doing some of the best journalism on television.
To that end, take a look at this sequence wherein The Daily exposes Dick Cheney (and with him, the entire Bush Administration) to be the manipulative dissemblers that they are.
Jon Stewart is discussing the Administration's recent bone picking with the Media for supposedly mischaracterizing the 9/11 Commission's report that Iraq and al-Qaeda had no substantial cooperative ties and what the Bush Administration may or may not have said about all of that in the lead up to war.
Cheney is seen on tape speaking to a CNBC reporter in an "exclusive" interview:
STEWART (live): "Never been proven, never been refuted"?...Well, I'm not unconvinced! ... [audience laughter] ... For the record, the 9/11 Commission said of the alleged Iraq/Atta encounter or meeting; "We do not believe that such a meeting occurred." But still that's okay because Vice President Cheney never said such a meeting occurred... He just said that you couldn't prove that it hadn't. He never acted like Atta had had that meeting and that meeting had been confirmed. Am I, am I right?
CNBC (on tape): You have said in the past that it was quote "pretty well confirmed..."
CHENEY (on tape): No, I never said that.
CNBC (on tape): Okay...
CHENEY (on tape): I never said that...
CNBC (on tape): I think that is...
CHENEY (on tape): That is...Absolutely not...
STEWART (live): He never said that? Hmm....
CHENEY (on tape, 12/9/01, Meet the Press): It's been pretty well confirmed...[audience cheers] that he did go to Prague and he did meet with a senior official of the Iraqi intelligence service in Czechoslovakia last April.
STEWART (live): Mr. Vice President...I have to inform you...your pants are on fire. [laughter, applause]
Funny? Yes. But also terribly sad that such "reporting" on what our "leaders" are saying to us, and the lies that they are selling to justify a horrendous foreign policy, is virtually only being done on a "fake news" show on a basic cable comedy channel! A disgraceful indictment of the supposedly "liberal" media if you ask me.
That wasn't the only ball that The Daily hit outta the park on last night's show. Stewart's interview with Stephen F. Hayes, author of The Connection: How al Qaeda's Collaboration with Sadam Hussein Has Endangered America was nothing less than brilliant. If I find time later today, I'll try and transcribe some key moments...Yes, really good journalism.
But for now, for "fair and balanced" sake, here's a great line from a Clinton story that lead last night's show featuring tape from Sunday's 60 Minutes Dan Rather interview:
STEWART (live): "If there had been no Ken Starr"...he would have confessed! [laugher] You know I'll say this for Bill Clinton, his integrity is at it's highest, when the situation is at it's most hypothetical. [audience laugher, cheers]
So there's a bone for you Fake Conservatives. Unfortunately, while the Clinton bit is funny, yes, it has no importance to anything. His "lies" haven't lead to the death of thousands of innocent human beings. I wish I could say the same for the Dick Cheney stuff...And for the media's part in standing down and/or aiding and abetting that effort throughout the entire shameful chapter.
Getting a bit too wonky even for myself here. So I'll hope the BRAD BLOG readers will tolerate this bit of wonkery for the moment. I believe it's important.
In case you're not familiar, an anonymous career CIA analyst/foreign policy expert, having served decades, and still employeed by the agency as I understand it, is releasing a book in a few weeks which is highly critical of the Bush Administration's "War on Terror".
In Imperial Hubris: How the West is Losing the War on Terror the author, Anonymous, goes into a much detailed account of where we went wrong, and what few options we now may be left with.
For those who would (as those who inevitably will, for partisan reasons) see this as just another Bush Bash Fest, it would be a mistake to do so, since Anonymous' prescription for what to do now, is decidely "un-Liberal". Essentially, he calls for Total War. But for an explanation of that actually means --- and how it differs from what is being waged now --- you'll need to read Spencer Ackerman's full article (over on Talking Points Memo where he's currently filling in for the vacationing Josh Marshall).
For the moment, what caught my eye was a useful and sobering post-mortem on where things now stand in both Afghanistan and Iraq:
Then there's Iraq. "[T]here is nothing bin Laden could have hoped for more than the American invasion and occupation of Iraq," he writes.
All Muslims would see each day on television that the United States was occupying a Muslim country, insisting that man-made laws replace God's revealed word, stealing Iraq's oil, and paving the way for the creation of a "Greater Israel." The clerics and scholars would call for a defensive jihad against the United States, young Muslim males would rush from across the Islamic world to fight U.S. troops, and there--in Islam's second holiest land--would erupt a second Afghanistan, a self-perpetuating holy war that would endure whether or not al-Qaeda survived.
The reason we've made these mistakes, he argues, is that we fail to understand that bin Laden doesn't hate us because of our freedom. Or, rather, while he does hate the licentiousness and modernity that the U.S. represents, it's not what compels him to declare war on us. Nor does an anti-modernist bent explain bin Laden's appeal across the Muslim world. Instead, it's what Anonymous identifies as six points bin Laden repeatedly cites in his communiqués: "U.S. support for Israel that keeps the Palestinians in the Israelis' thrall; U.S. and other Western troops on the Arabian peninsula; U.S. occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan; U.S. support for Russia, India and China against their Muslim militants; U.S. pressure on Arab energy producers to keep oil prices low; U.S. support for apostate, corrupt and tyrannical Muslim governments." Combined with his charismatic biography, bin Laden's strategic success has been to frame these arguments through a Koranic prism, "to convince everyone that U.S. policy is deliberately anti-Muslim and anti-Islamic," he says. Bin Laden's critique presents in resonant Islamic terminology a coherent jihadist explanation for practically everything Muslims can find offensive about the U.S.--the most deadly slippery slope there is. And the more Americans insist on treating bin Laden's anger with the U.S. as a pure hatred of freedom, the less equipped we'll be to answer him in a battle of ideas. [emphasis added]
I realize these arguments may be a bit more nuanced and informed than is easily fit onto Headline News, Larry King's brain, or the general limited scope of a Fake Conservative's knee-jerk ideological pallette.
The battle of "Good vs. Evil" is much easier to get across to the Nascar Dad Joe-Sixpacks on whom Dubya's re-election chances now hinge.
None the less, until the United States cares to take a real, sobering, and --- yes --- nuanced look at what this "War" is really about, we're destined to simply keep spinning our wheels in a never-ending, ever-increasing bloody battle that simply cannot be "won".
Last night, on a beautiful summer's eve, we took the 40 minute drive or so to one of the few remaining Drive-In Movie's remaining in Southern California. We tend to seek out such places no matter where on the road we might be. Nothing makes a marginal movie better, than seeing it on the cheap and under the stars.
To that end, a few weeks ago near Solvang, we caught both Shrek 2 and Mean Girls. The first was a whole lotta fun, highly recommended, and the second was much better than expected --- and not only because it included some great and smart and actually funny "anti-Liberal" satire. Some thing that is not easy to find these days.
Last night, we saw two more nearer to home. The first was Around the World in 80 Days, which to my great delight and surprise I am herewith proclaiming "an Instant Disney Classic!", and The Stepford Wives which I am herewith proclaiming "uh...not so much".
Actually, Stepford was about as stupid and knee-jerky as they come. Disappointingly unfunny, unscary, and unsmart. All in all, an enormously good idea/opportunity squandered for reasons that likely have to do with "business as usual" amongst the Hollywood Studio Food Chains. Save your time and money. But don't be afraid to catch Around the World... as it was genuinely well done, and actually quite amusing.
Though I'd still recommend you try to catch Control Room first --- as reviewed here previously --- since it'll be harder to find at a later date and it's truly an important film for Americans to see.
A Few Great Blogs
· Baghdad Burning
· Brilliant at Breakfast
· Crooks and Liars
· Dan Froomkin
· Fired Up! Missouri
· Freedom's Phoenix
· Freeway Blogger
· Glenn Greenwald
· Huffington Post
· Jesus' General
· Juan Cole
· Washington Monthly
· Media Matters
· Nashua Advocate
· Oliver Willis
· RAW STORY
· Sanoma State's
Project Censored Sites:
· Daily Censored
· Media Freedom
· Project Censored
· Scholars & Rogues
· Skippy the Bush Kangaroo
· Talking Points Memo
· Think Progress
· Tom Tomorrow
· TV Newser
· Ben Sargent
· Bill Deore
· Bob Gorrell
· Cagle's Index
· Chan Lowe
· Don Wright
· Doug Marlette
· Glenn McCoy
· Jeff Danziger
· Joel Pett
· Mike Luckovich
· Non Sequitur
· Not Banned Yet
· Pat Oliphant
· Paul Conrad
· Ted Rall
· This Modern World
· Thomas Burns
· Tom Toles
· Tony Auth
· Stuart Carlson
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