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The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...


By Brad Friedman on 6/1/2004 6:48pm PT  




By Brad Friedman on 6/1/2004 11:34am PT  




By Brad Friedman on 6/1/2004 11:21am PT  

As one of the points in my original "GOP Win-Win Spin-Spin" piece (re-published today on DemocraticUnderground.com as their lead story), the Bushies used the excuse of the economic downturn to sell the same Tax Plan that they had previously devised in December of 1999 as necessary for the economic boom we were facing originally.

I must have had something right there, as Josh Marshell today goes into more detail on that same topic today in his examination of the flagrantly misleading David Brooks piece in the Times.

(After the Iraq/Judith Miller/Chalabi mess in the Times one would really have thought they'd begin being a bit more responsible in their unchecked Administration log-rolling, but perhaps not.)

Underscoring precisely one of the points in my piece, Marshall says:

For the authors of the plan, the tax cut was a justification in itself; the White House simply grasped on to whatever explanation made most sense at the given moment to advance it. That's why a plan devised at the height of a boom --- to cull an oversized surplus --- made equally great sense when the economy was in free-fall. The policy was driving the rationale, not the other way around.

This new argument --- that the White House pushed through big tax cuts because of the economic slow-down of early 2001 --- is simply an effort to retrospectively exonerate reckless and dishonest behavior which was demonstrably reckless and dishonest at the time. Columnists should challenge that sort of mendacity, not abet it.

But to connect the latest dots, I should have also realized that Bush's latest spin, on why he should be re-"elected", is also more of the (soon to be Trademarked?) GOP Win-Win Spin-Spin machine. As discussed a day or two ago, Bush now has the temerity to suggest that he should be re-upped because he is the man to clean up the mess that he created.

In other words, "My plan for Iraq is best, because it takes into account everything that I fucked up, and therefore, am the best person to fix because who knows those fuck ups better than me?!"

These guys are a marvel. If Democrats could spin this well, they would own the world.

Next thing you know they'll start telling us their plan for allowing Brahimi and the UN to select the new Caretaker Government in Iraq to whom we hand over "complete sovereignty" in a few weeks is going just as planned! Oh, wait...well, whaddaya know?!

Coming Soon: How "complete sovereignty" doesn't actually mean complete sovereignty! (and you thought the meaning of "is" was confusing!)




By Brad Friedman on 5/31/2004 10:36am PT  

Josh Marshall hits the nail on the head in his analysis of last week's speech by Bush.

He points out that as Bush continues to inch ever closer to Kerry's position on Iraq, he is no longer trying to sell what good may come of the mess he made there, but rather, that he is the best equipped to not fuck up too much more than what he has already so desperately fucked up:

Originally, the case for war was built on claims about the Iraqi regime's possession of weapons of mass destruction and its support for terrorist groups like al qaida. To a lesser degree, but with increasing force as these other rationales faded way, the case was made on the basis of democratizing and liberalizing Iraq.

As that prospect too has become increasingly distant and improbable, President Bush has taken a fundamentally different tack. His emphasis now is seldom on what good might come of his Iraq policy but rather the dire consequences of its unmitigated 'failure' or its premature abandonment.

In other words, the president now argues that he is best equipped to guard the country from the full brunt of the consequences of his own misguided actions, managerial incompetence and dishonesty.

Sounds about right. He closes with a wonderfully disturbing metaphor...

The president's actions, if not his words, concede that Iraq has become the geopolitical equivalent of a botched surgery --- botched through some mix of the misdiagnosis of the original malady and the incompetence of the surgeon. Achieving the original goal of the surgery is now close to an afterthought. The effort is confined to closing up as quickly as possible and preventing the patient from dying on the table. And now the 'doctor', pressed for time and desperate for insight, stands over the patient with a scalpel in one hand and the other hurriedly leafing through a first year anatomy text book.

New Bush-Cheney campaign slogan?: "Vote for us! How much worse could we possibly do?!"




By Brad Friedman on 5/31/2004 9:45am PT  

Now that the dissembling, history re-writing and legacy creating on Iraq is in full swing by the Republican Spinmeisters (I actually had one Rightwingnut blogger write me recently with a straight face that he "didn't think Bush actually said anything about nuclear weapons...") we can thank the fine Americans in Rep. Henry Waxman's office for providing a searchable database on Administration lies and misstatements on the threat posed by Iraq.

So next time you hear one of your brain-addled Rightwing friends or family members regurgitate Paul Wolfowitz saying on the radio (as he did on March 16th, 2004) that "We never said there were stockpiles." ...

Or Rumsfeld shows up on Face the Nation (as he did on March 14th, 2004) to say "Well, you're the ... you and a few other critics are the only people I've heard use the phrase 'immediate threat.' I didn't. The president didn't. And it's become kind of folklore that that's... that's what's happened."...

You'll be able to stop by this database, and easily find the time when Rumsfeld said to the Congressional Armed Services Committee on September 19th, 2002:

"[N]o terrorist state poses a greater or more immediate threat to the security of our people than the regime of Saddam Hussein and Iraq."

You can only fool some of the people some of the time. Thankfully, it's getting much harder for these bad bad dangerous irresponsible folks to be able to do just that. Is it time to start calling him "Baghdad Bush"?




By Brad Friedman on 5/30/2004 1:22am PT  




Coming Soon...Everywhere you turn.
Brad Blog responds: 'Bring it on!'
By Brad Friedman on 5/29/2004 1:19pm PT  

It's only gonna get worse before it gets better, I'm afraid. The faint of heart may want to turn back now.

Bill Sammon, the Whitehouse mouthpiece from the Washington Times, the Whitehouse organ, reports the new plan...

President Bush's political strategists have concluded that the way to battle back from record low job-approval ratings and months of bad news from Iraq is to talk about Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry.
...
"We are going to continue talking about it through ads, through the Web, through surrogate events, through remarks by the president, by the vice president, through talk radio, through all kinds of different sources of information," Mr. Mehlman said.
...
"The days of there being three networks that provided people all their information that they needed to know are gone," Mr. Mehlman said. "Today, they get information from cable; they get information from original newspapers; they get information from blogs; they get information from talk radio."

The campaign has resolved to push its message through all these outlets whenever possible.

Try to keep all of the above in mind as you listen and watch the Mainstream Conservative Media over the next six months. The message from all corners should be in remarkably predictable GOP lockstep coordination, unless they really start to panic. In which case, all bets are off.

For the record, all opinions on the BRAD BLOG are the original thought of it's author and belong neither to the DNC, the DCCC, the Kerry Campaign, or the Daily Barbra Streistand Talking Points Memo.

Bring it on.




Vote a new loser off each week!
By Brad Friedman on 5/29/2004 12:09pm PT  

View the Trailer and sign up to watch new episodes for free...Looks like it should be funny. For Survivor fans and Democrats anyway...Or Republicans with a sense of humor (therefore, Republican viewership may be very low).




By Brad Friedman on 5/28/2004 1:38pm PT  

Remember the Republican outrage directed at Bill Clinton when the US was running out of Tomahawk missiles back in 1999?

Well, oddly enough, I've yet to hear a single condemnation of George W. Bush by a Republican for running out of BULLETS IN THE MIDDLE OF A WAR for christ-sake!

Though, yes, the insane Bush dead-enders over at Free Republic (where I was banned after just one post...so much for the "Free" in Free Republic I guess), a few folks incredibly are still blaming Bill Clinton for this newest disgrace!

Miraculously, one poster succeeding in avoiding the censors over there (so far), and was able to make this post:

Clinton was in office four years ago. How long will he be blamed?

Sad.




And how you need to help fight back!
By Brad Friedman on 5/28/2004 12:47pm PT  

No matter what Rush and Sean and O'Reilly tell you, the "Liberal Media" is simply a lie they would like you to believe to benefit their own cause. The NY Times --- the paper of record which sets the agenda for the rest of the world's papers --- admitted earlier this week how they were a sycophantic tool for the Bush Administration's propoganda to help trick America into believing we should go to war with Iraq.

And now CNN proves again how it too is a mouth-piece for Administration Propoganda. Courtesy of Atrios:

Call CNN

Outrage:

[Kelli] ARENA: Neither John Kerry nor the president has said troops pulled out of Iraq any time soon. But there is some speculation that al Qaeda believes it has a better chance of winning in Iraq if John Kerry is in the White House.

BEN VENZKE, INTELCENTER: Al Qaeda feels that Bush is, even despite casualties, right or wrong for staying there is going to stay much longer than possibly what they might hope a Democratic administration would.

There you go. We're fighting al Qaeda in Iraq and they think John Kerry is a wimp.

Atlanta:
404-827-1500

Washington:
202-898-7900

You can communicate your thoughts to Ms. Arena personally at:
kelli.arena@turner.com

You can now send your emails to Eason Jordan at Eason.Jordan@turner.com. He's CNN's chief news executive.




Marking Memorial Day and over 800 Americans now killed in Iraq...
By Brad Friedman on 5/28/2004 12:28pm PT  




By Brad Friedman on 5/28/2004 12:24pm PT  




By Brad Friedman on 5/28/2004 12:13pm PT  

So late last night / early this morning, while listening to Air America, I was alerted to a web poll being run over on Hannity.com asking "Who should be President of the United States?"

I stopped by, voiced my opinion, and saw that the results of the unscientific web poll to that point --- with some 11,000+ votes cast --- was about 65% Kerry, 33% Bush, 2% Nader.

This morning when I woke up, I checked it again. It was then at 75% Kerry, 22% Bush, 3% Nader.

Checked back about 20 minutes later to find that "This poll has been disabled."

So presumably, there's a kink in the well-oiled GOP Media Spin Machine. Was the poll taken down because it was soiled after Air America alerted listeners to it's existance? Presumably, Hannity either did, or would have told his 10 million or so (largely Republican) listeners to stop by and vote on his web poll and then reported the Fair and Balanced results later on his show.

Yet the "inconsequential", "failing", "nobody listens to it" Air America informs it's American listeners about the poll which resulted in numbers --- I guess --- that Sean didn't care for. So the poll comes down.

It's a rather small point, nothing as outrageous as repeatedly playing the uncut audio of an American screaming in horrific agony as his head is sawed off "live" on the air (as I reported in "Sean Hannity: American Shame") but it does serve to illustrate the desperate and deceptive Anti-American nature of the #2 GOP Spokesperson who is given free reign on the Public Airwaves coast-to-coast across the nation.

Perhaps it's time for another look at the FCC's "Equal Time Rule" which is seemingly now wholly ignored as it applies to the political propoganda being shovelled out under the guise of "entertainment" on America's Public Airwaves. I'm not holding my breath.

UPDATE: After listening to the first two and a half hours of Hannity's show today, he has not made one mention of his aborted poll. Down the memory hole, I guess...




By Brad Friedman on 5/27/2004 11:49pm PT  




By Brad Friedman on 5/27/2004 10:23pm PT  

In case you still wonder how anybody could suspect the Bush Administration of being less than honest...I mean, enormous liars...Take a look at this snippet from the press briefing aboard Airforce One on the afternoon of September 11, 2001:

Q Had there been any warnings that the President knew of?

MR. FLEISCHER: No warnings.

Remind me again why we should believe them about anything at this point? And isn't that lack of credibility alone --- both here and worldwide --- reason enough to remove them from office immediately? How effective can they be when nobody in the world trusts them? And they said nobody trusted Clinton?!

(Thanks to ProudLiberals.com for the find!)




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