Monthly Archives: July 2007

A Time Not To Speak July 17-22, 2007

Sunday, July 22, 2007

The Angry Left, Huh?

Update: Of course I write this and then go read this and this and notice that the broad brush still paints to broadly. Apologies to conservatives in general.

Somewhere along the line the elite forgot where they came from, I suppose, having left the burgs and villages for fame and fortune in politics and the reporting of thereof. The problem with this remark;,

DAVID GREGORY: Hillary Clinton, her Sister Souljah moment is going to be telling the left to move beyond their hatred over Iraq, for Bush, and think about how they’re going to engage the war on terror in a very serious and tough way.

is twofold I think. One it conveys the idea that violence and curtailing of civil rights are the only solutions to terrorism, since that is what we have tried so far, which totally ignores the ability of the free flow of information and good old fashion police work in fighting terrorists.

Now I am more than willing to entertain and interject ideas into the war on terrorism if it goes beyond the previously mentioned policy decisions, and first and foremost I would dial them back since they aren’t working at all. Fighting terrorism with war has created more terrorists in Afghanistan and Iraq than they have killed, so perhaps the conservatives need to have their own Sister Souljah moment about the ability to solve all foreign blow back to previous foreign policies with more violence, and exploitation.

I don’t think conservatives are able to, or at least publicly able to, connect cause and effect in the war on terrorism if it might include American foreign policy prior to 911, and perhaps even afterward.

Somehow or another America is blameless and without flaw, and always benign, seeking the good of those other peoples in whose lands we feel a need to interfere in for national security or economic reasons, and putting the shoe on the other foot is a habit best left to other nations than America.

In this sort of situation there will be no pulling together for serious discussions, because the speaker is seeking to justify his position with the straw man of the angry left. I say angry left because there are some on the left who may be angry, just as there are on the right, but that is hardly the case for the majority of either wing, and does not reflect anything but the narrow understanding of the situation by the speaker, unless, like some bloggers I know, he is purposely trying to manipulate the situation which would move him from journalism into political activism.

To some extent I think that is burr under the press corps saddle, that having been somewhere between journalists and political manipulators for all these years the blogosphere appeared and did the same thing just as well without the pretense of being a fair and balanced presentation of the situation. In short, many members of the political press are being caught with their knickers down because of the blogs, which is causing them some consternation. Power is not an easy thing to give up voluntarily or otherwise.

I’m not sure that I have definitively identified the problem so I can’t offer any suggestions for solving it, but I do think that that is the gist of the situation. On the other hand constant personal attacks makes people react and do and say strange things about and to other people, whether those attacks are justified or not, and given ones own maturity and ethics.

I do know however, that the art of politics in America has always included a healthy dose of personal attacks, and if the press wishes to be political players then they will have to get used to being part of the game. The blogs have added a new dimension to that game IMHO, because they are not seeking public office, and so are not beholden to the press for favorable coverage of themselves. This negates one of the press’ best defensive mechanisms they had with politicians seeking office.

I don’t think it has to work out as being alternatives to one another, all though it certainly could, because the blogs for the most part are beholden to the same market forces as the mainstream. That doesn’t mean the internet will ever become mainstream as the mainstream might wish it to be seen, thereby making the two equal in eyes of the law of public opinion, since most people online are not that obtuse. There is no way this blog or any other is ever going to equal the mainstream in financing or access.

The key component I think is access, (Mr. Kristol’s whine,) which like any other tool of mankind’s is a double edged sword, and so access also includes the previously mentioned manipulation being played out on the one receiving the access. What the blogs have done in many respects is to note when the politician or the mainstream has hold of the blade or the handle and in so doing to draw the blade in one direction or the other. This tends to PO the holder of the blade.

However on cannot overlook the October Surprise of 1980, Iran/Contra, Atwater, Rove, and the occupation of Iraq, which may cause some level of anger to expressed at those manipulators that instigated and allowed or encouraged those behaviors to continue. After all you boys didn’t much care for the bleeding heart left either, did you?

The Challenge

Lou Dobbs asked an opinion poll question as CNN is want to do, wondering if Americans needed a time out, you know, a two week no speak break from the political yada yada, which would probably be good idea if we didn’t have so many professional pundits who having been on vacation for years and continuing to speak would probably be totally flummoxed by the silence within their own heads. But it is a good idea, based on the assumption that thinking about stuff is a good thing.

Over the last week I have found that Timmeh, Tweety, and Lou aren’t nearly as bad as I recall thinking they were last year, or six months ago, which may or may not be a change in them as in me. I’m not going to say that I have had any great shift in my opinions either, because I haven’t. The blind faith years are gone forever, killed in the run up to the war in Iraq, but hopefully that is being replaced by the healthy skepticism that they probably have earned and deserve being professionals.

Ultimately I think the blogs have tempered my thinking most of the time in most respects, although I would surmise I have fallen into the old forum rut of late, which had a large element of snark because the partisanship was so pronounced. You know I didn’t just hear the wackos talking points second hand through the MSM there, I actually debated and debunked them. I don’t know how many people remember, or are aware of the level of snark that was circulating back then when liberal was still a dirty word, mostly directed at Democrats for being so. I’d like to think I helped bring that to end, mostly by introducing the conservatives to the bleeding knuckle variety of bleeding heart liberals, and to be honest, at the WaPo there were mostly neocon conservatives which hadn’t yet been differentiated from the paleocons.

I bring that all up because it was a time of transition for myself personally, but also for the nation, as we lost the marketing campaign around the war and the country plunged into the abyss of the quagmire of Iraq. In all that time I can remember only trolling twice, once on Affirmative Action which lead to a long and winding debate with a black conservative from New York who opposed the idea, and added the irony needed for the topic and forum inwhich it was carried out in.

The other troll was to debate the Constitution, which was more of a challenge to one of the better conservative debaters who actually had a good head on his shoulders, except when it came to defending the Constitution, which has its’ own ironic hue as well.

The point of the foregoing is to remind myself of where this all started and try to recall to mind the differences in times and rhetoric as opposed to the current discourse. Hence I noted the rut of the forum in the blog.

Listening to the Republican leadership on teevee I can see that the subject has changed without the topic doing so, or the tactics of the conservatives in the debate, which is basically call on the straw man when a point is being lost, rather than concede the point. Conservatives may not be right but they are never wrong. Liberals on the other hand are overly optimistic about people, human nature, and the power of the people to actually initiate a change in the political thinking of the elite, which even if one considers the most liberal of political leaders, is more than likely more conservative than the rank and file, grass roots, and or blogosphere. Perhaps continuity has something to do with it.

At any rate the challenge is to move things forward, in both political action by the elite, and more importantly in addressing the mind set of the current situation of the world and the national body politics view of America and our role in that world. We can’t so without addressing the dangers, but we should also do that assessment without the patina of fear that current political operatives wish it to be discussed under. Danger is to met, not feared. To my mind at least, death is a part of life and those who fear death fear life. I do not recall the America of my youth being a timid place of timid people.

To do so I think it will require a little bit more attention to the conservatives concerns, which for me are usually hidden behind the rhetoric of false assumptions of the liberals. This may have something to do with actually living in Texas and so talking in voice to conservatives all the time who have assumed that I want to take their guns, or that I am squeamish about blowing up deer and hogs. As much as I despise dog fighting, I really am not offended by those who do that stuff to the point that I would want them thrown in jail over it, nor am I aware of way to re-educate these folks to moderate their behaviors, and mostly not interested in it to the point of becoming to involved or worked up over the issue. Those with strong feelings on the subject can work out something that I can live with.

So we will have to deal with the terrorist, of uncertain numbers, and in many ways and on many levels. We run into the cockroach problem if we just try to kill them without removing the food and shelter that they use on these many different levels. The current strategy of kill them all falls into the trap of we’ll make more, a cycle that proves nothing other than we can be as mindless as the roaches and cans of Raid. So addressing the conservatives need to kill will have to go hand in hand with the liberal desire to clean the house.

To do so will require people to stop talking about our differences long enough to note what makes Americans similar. This doesn’t sell a lot of peas, so the MSM will probably continue to exacerbate the situation currently being deployed by the department of Marketing. The only antidote to television is to denigrate it as a source of information in our personal interactions with other people until it either moderates itself, or the people moderate themselves again.

I’m not saying go Luddite on television, but just consider the source, and the motivation of that source. Television thrives on controversy, and people get some sort of pleasure out of other peoples misery or the reality television shows would flop. So it isn’t a problem with television, or so much as with the people who spend too much time in front of one, but those who actually don’t receive any other form of information. It is basically pictures and opinions. There is a reason that many commentators are starting to apply fictional settings from television to the real world. So long as this is the normative then there will never be a realistic foreign policy position that is popular with the people at large.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

World at War

Jet Blue Tickets Still Available

Update II: JetBlue wants me to note that they didn’t pull the tickets they donated to the event. So the sponsorship remains, but they are too afraid to let anyone know that they donated those tickets.

We’ll you’ve got big balls, and she’s got big balls, but everyone knows I’ve got the biggest balls of all.

The Phony Editorial

THE SENATE Democratic leadership spent the past week trying to prove that Congress is deeply divided over Iraq, with Democrats pressing and Republicans resisting a change of course. In fact that’s far from the truth. A large majority of senators from both parties favor a shift in the U.S. mission that would involve substantially reducing the number of American forces over the next year or so and rededicating those remaining to training the Iraqi army, protecting Iraq’s borders and fighting al-Qaeda. President Bush and his senior aides and generals also support this broad strategy, which was formulated by the bipartisan Baker-Hamilton commission. Mr. Bush recently said that “it’s a position I’d like to see us in.”

That’s what you say. The Democrats spent the last week showing the difference between pro withdrawal talk with obstructionism politics with the Republican leadership, and Democratic needs for bi-partisanship in withdrawal of the troops, which should have least been acknowledged by Broder who has been harping on the topic since Lord knows when, and the interjecting of his name into the post at this point is equally germane to the graph as is the editors interjection of the President, the ISG and diverse and other various topics short of tropical fruit.(Mr. Bush also rejected Baker-Hamilton, just to inform the editor.)

The emerging consensus is driven by several inescapable facts. First, the Iraqi political reconciliation on which the current U.S. military surge is counting is unlikely to happen anytime soon. Second, the Pentagon cannot sustain the current level of forces in Iraq beyond next spring without rupturing current deployment practices and placing new demands on the already stretched Army and Marine Corps. Finally, a complete pullout from Iraq would invite genocide, regional war and a catastrophic setback to U.S. national security.

The first inescapable fact being overlooked is that the Bush administration is completely and utterly incapable of running foreign policy, most especially a war either in Afghanistan or Iraq, and is hell bent to go fiascoing in Iran as well.

The first of your points “Iraqi political reconciliation on which the current U.S. military surge is counting is unlikely to happen anytime soon.“, was a no brainer when first proposed since the political reconciliation the US was seeking and is seeking today does not comport with the political realities of Iraq, and given your smug assuredness ought to have been written and acknowledge by you six months ago when the whole strategy was obviously not suited to the Iraqi political situation, as noted by some Senators, Representatives and various and sundry dirty fucking hippies.

Finally I have not seen where, “Finally, a complete pullout from Iraq would invite genocide, regional war and a catastrophic setback to U.S. national security.” Ethnic cleansing of areas are already well under way, and eventually they will subside when the task is completed, which ought to be somewhere into the third six month surge of Republican victory with honor strategy. The regional war you fear is easier avoided by a regional peace, in which all of the border nations are invited to conference and participation in a situation that directly borders on their own national security.

It may just be a sad fact of reality there buddy, that the interests of the United States may have to be of less import than those of Iraq’s neighbors. We may have to take second place.

The Two Men Appeared Out of Nowhere

walking on the dead of war, nominated by the Very Serious People responsible for the dead of war, to lead the people home.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

A Time To Speak

One of the most intriguing things about politics is my steadfast ability to cross over the line.

On the other hand it may be a personality flaw. Either way, that’s the way politics are for me, after all if what I wanted was on this side of the line I wouldn’t have to cross one to achieve the goal.

There is a point when I just tire of the debate being judged, if at all, by a relatively uninformed public drinking the kool aid of marketing politics. It is the one business that encourages negativity in assessing other peoples opinions, which I figure leads invariably to ad hominem which has always been started by the other side. The infinite loop of critical self assessment writ large on a self governing people that hates Republicans or Democrats in our case here in America, while leaving that emotion out of the equation in our daily interactions with individuals of those persuasions.

That being said you still have to write large, and counter punches, but sometimes you get to sneak in a sucker shot and then duck, but eventually you’re going to get hit too, proving that two out of three ain’t bad. I don’t think learning to get up off ones ass hurts anyone either, so long as it doesn’t become habitual, when it become debilitating to puncher and punchie. This probably has as much to do with the rise of the political psychopaths, than any real feeling towards an individuals difference of opinions, who say what others would, or couldn’t say about others, hence Rush Ann O’Rielly.

Ultimately there is only so much low I can sink to without getting stuck in the mud, and to be honest I think I have moved my issues in my direction as far as I am going to be able to push them. They have received a hearing. That is one of the most fundamental goals of any debate, and from whence the danger of an idea can spread that the powers that be are always opposing. They, too, are of the not invented here market.

Then again there are just so many more people that are better wonks in their speciality than I’ll ever be that it can take considerable time and effort learning enough about whatever subject, enough to zing them with when the opportunity should present itself anyway. Obviously my interest in those topics has for the better part of my life been nil at best, but fortunately I’m a good learner.

Skating out on the the thin ice is essential for seeing who else is falling into the lake. You can neither laugh nor help in front of the fire of contemplation, necessary as it is to warm and comfort.

A Symmetrical NIE

Update: Again, I think there is a large measure of domestic politics involved in the recent spate of terrorist fevor, but, one I thought I should point out that asymmetrical means just that, and two, I didn’t want that twit to think no one on the left cared about terrorism. It might be helpful if Americans recognized their own perpetuated on others, but that is another post, and it is doubtful if there shall be one.

FWIW, the NIE report delivered this AM by Fran sounds as though the ability to go asymmetrical still eludes America. The fear factor is still based on symmetrical thinking, along the lines of the Glasgow fire, Fort Dix etc.

Personally I think that things that go boom are diversions. The fact that Iraqi doctors are setting themselves on fire in Britain ought to cause one to wonder what the H-1B visas boys are doing in software, and to to cause one to also contemplate the head start in these areas that the war in Iraq has exacerbated.

Since our government has been so vocal in their kill the rabbit singing, one would expect some sort of reply in kind, in an asymmetrical way against the economic infrastructure of the West. Biting off the head that feeds IT has a nice symmetry, but one cannot neglect the financiers and bankers either.

All three of these targets are soft, they are interrelated and they are not on the cable news networks radar, which would include disrupting them as well. Americans are addicted to information as well as oil, wealth and power.

Just as it may be ignored in official quarters that many of the children blowing themselves up in suicide bombings in Iraq were born after the sanctions and no fly zones were imposed, the emotional impact of those events are being overlooked as well. Outsourcing may very well be AQs insourcing route, the altruistic highway’s potholes.

Advertisements

Flagpie Slats July 10-14, 2007

Saturday, July 14, 2007

One More For The Road

The Cucumber Report

It has been noted that cucumbers are causing a minority of people to have gas that sinks, instead of rising as in the majority opinion of bowels, which some have attributed to the youthful exuberance of locker room humor, the failure to locate a good wife, and the failure of motherhood in general. No mention of the diverse ecology’s of the biological systems will be discussed as this is not the field of expertise of the author, nor of anyone I have talked to about this subject, consisting so far of you.

While it may arguable be argued to excuse the burp, quietly, under ones breath, behind a hand that will be washed within a fortnight, the consensus opinion is that these options should only be exercised in the company of those not inclined to argue over little things of no import, and for those people arguments should instead focus on those whose biology and psychology incline them to argue over other things of import, such as the proper timing and placement of flatulence, with which everyone seems to have an opinion, specifically if I do it, provide of course that such gas is the result of ingesting cucumbers and not onions, or article therefrom.

Joe Lieberman is Right

Via Instaputz, we find that Holy Joe was interviewed by new bff Hugh Hewitt:

Look, the American military, working together with coalition forces including Iraqis, will never lose the war in Iraq. I just can’t stress that enough. … If America suffers a defeat in Iraq, it will be because the American people didn’t stick with it, didn’t have the will. And some people here in leadership positions politically were so much against it that they built up that public opposition, that a lot of it is framed by the media. I won’t say a lot of them lie, but the constant focus is on the suicide bombers. And I know that’s news, but you know, the suicide bombers are our enemy. They’re carrying out more dramatic acts because we’re on the move, and we’ve got them on the run. And incidentally, Hugh, they’re not only trying to kill Iraqis and Americans with the suicide bombs over there, they’re trying to kill American support for the war in Iraq.

If the media would focus more on the airstrikes that are killing our Iraqi friends…

via digby

He Just Wants To Be Loved, Is That So Wong???

Lugar And Warner Amendment A Tough Challenge To Bush? Not So Much.

Well For Those Dollars

it makes sense

When NBC chief Pentagon correspondent Jim Miklaszewski spoke May 1 before the Rhode Island Business Expo (in exchange for $30,000 from the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce), he talked about Iraq, about al Qaeda, about the Bush administration’s response to the September 11 attacks — and he told his audience that John Edwards is a “loser.” Why? The haircut, of course.

For those of us who are not media watch dogs, just avid watchers, readers, and listeners of the media, these kinds of things are always an eye opener. Not that Media Matters is wrong in their article either, I can’t imagine why a bald headed guy would latch on to Edwards haircut like a pit bull on a pork chop, but then Jim has hair on his head, and flosses.

However it is obvious why these people continue to report half of the facts some of the time, when the big lucre is coming from the people that like to hear those half facts told. I would imagine that Jim didn’t invent the practice, and in fact I would almost wager that some ham fisted suit did, but that is besides the point, and given the ipods problem with lightning and an approaching thunderstorm here, this no time for the ol tin foil hat to come out of the double super secret lead lined hole in the concrete floor.

So I’ll do what the national media used to do, and stick to facts m’am. At any rate I now forgive the national media for sucking so badly, since it is important to their finances to keep the high falooters looting for them, I mean rooting for them, to appear at their rubber chickens and rah rah rahs, seeing as how none of them attend college anymore and so need a social outlet beyond whore houses which is of course an excercise in social intercourse best done singularly, multiple times, according to the reports which are as reliable as fishing tales, and somewhat better than previously mentioned news reporters reports, primarily because it is being reported by non national reporters. I mean business people need a break too.

So I figure by watching the national news, I am also helping some bald headed business guy stay out of the whore houses, listening to Jim and two and half dozen other national big shot reporters regale them with tales of haircuts, nose pickings, and other assorted perfunctuary nonsense.

Had they only been honest in the first place I would never have criticised them in the second. But then old habits are hard to break so a little dishonesty here, and a little dishonesty there, next thing you know the only things reporters don’t want reported is the news, but especially the news about them. After all if one is going to shaft the gold mine one shouldn’t let the whole world know about it. Credibility is hard to find, even if the President and national press get to define what the term means. The rest of us however, know to say IOKIYAR.

Mr. Lieberman’s War

Bet you thought it was Joe.

Executive Priviledge

The Whitewashit, Washinghands DC, July 4 & 14,

In honor of the Declaration of Bastille the Bush administration re-exerted its’ assumption of executive privilege to cover the cover ups of friendly fire deaths, and pre-emptive wars. The dual use order was issued to enable the pResident to hang onto power long enough for Israel to attack Iran and thereby declare martial law, as is his privilege.

Democratic forces in America slept through the issue, preferring Budweiser, wine and cheese as free choices to made by nitwits, for nitwits and of nitwits.

The Mainstream media indicated it would cover these developments as soon as they had received press releases from the government, although they did not indicate if these reports were to be issued by Israel or America. and there are no indications of reporters leaving for Tel Aviv so one is to presume that it will occur in Washinghands, as the national press relies on its’ pillow talk from anonymous sources, who have constantly screwed them without ever waking them up.

Note to Jake, “Keg” Tapper

Of course the Iraqi people will be safer if we unite them all by attacking Iran. Then they will only have to kill Americans. Perhaps you need to change your thrust.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Brigadier General Bullshit

of the fifth column I presume,

Earlier this month, in a U.S. military briefing for the press, Brigadier General Kevin Bergner, a former White House aide, accused Iranian operatives of the powerful Qods Forces of masterminding the attack and using Moqtada al-Sadr’s Mahdi Army to pull it off. Nothing in the Army report is dispositive of Bergner’s contention, said to have been gained through interrogation of a Lebanese Hezbollah terrorist in U.S. custody. But at Mother Jones, reporter Laura Rozen notes that Bergner’s briefing “failed to mention” the February Army report ascribing complicity to the Iraqi police. It’s not difficult to see why — considering that the U.S.’s long-term strategy in Iraq is to turn security operations over to uniformed Iraqis like the Karbala police.

It’s not just that, IMHO, but the intentions of a certain faction of war mongers to invade or at least bomb Iran and a Brigadier General of the United States participating in the ruse. What the hell’s the matter with these people? Everyone knows that Lieberman is headed for the twilight zone,

…It’s always amusing when a bit of the military’s psychological operations is exposed for the baloney that it is. I hope Joe Lieberman doesn’t cry. This news gives the lie to Lieberman’s recent opinion piece:

According to Brig. Gen. Kevin Bergner, the U.S. military spokesman in Baghdad, the Iranian government has been using the Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah to train and organize Iraqi extremists, who are responsible in turn for the murder of American service members.

You know this garbage is coming from the morally upright, the religiously intact crowd of Americans, those who presume they are somehow qualified to lead, but unqualified to tell anyone where they are really going to lead anyone to. That in turn begets this

Lies and the Lying Liars

Will our press ever stop the first draft stenography?

All of which makes the MSM defensive because they are the messenger, for sure, but because they are being used by the elite as tools to carry their water, a habit that tends to raise the ire of We The People, especially when We The People are getting hammered by these very same people for being inaccurate, vitriolic, vituperative dirty fucking hippies.

Meanwhile these same people are swearing like sailors everywhere except on television, killing thousands of people indiscriminately for apparently total bullshit reasons, and even more apparently so, they intend to do so yet again, and of course we worry about their religious beliefs and which one is going to the whore house to wash the blood off their hand and salve their consciences in the most pious of ways, because that is what the press likes to report, as guardians of the peoples interests.

The war on drugs is probably the only honest issue they have going for them, and from what I’ve seen lately I ain’t to sure they aren’t smoking an inordinate amount of crack in DC.

What He Said

We need Top Down Progress in DC

TDC -2degrees. Iraq needs stepwise refinement.

Suburban Dysfunction

How come all the school terrorists are suburban kids? (Maybe white, bright flight ain”t all it’s cracked up to be?)

We need an antiwar movement.

Knickers in a Knot?

Myths of the War on Terrorism

On Sept. 12, 2001, it was easy to believe that we would suffer dozens of major attacks on U.S. soil over the next six years, and almost impossible to imagine we would suffer none. Instead of being the opening blitz of a “long, global war,” 9/11 was a freak event that may never be replicated.
In a real war, such as the ones we are fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, many people die, week in and week out. But John Mueller, a national security professor at Ohio State University, notes that in a typical year, no more than a few hundred people are killed worldwide in attacks by al Qaeda and similar groups outside of war zones.

Speaking the truth to the powerless.

Rocket Science For Headline Writers

Here we have a headline from the New York Times

Senate Narrowly Backs Bush in Rejecting Debate on Increasing Time Between Deployments

Well, no, I’m sorry. That’s not right. The vote was 56 to 41. A solid majority of senators supported increasing time between deployments. Republicans blocked a vote on the bill.

Say it again: They blocked a vote. They filibustered it.

Were the shoe on the other foot seven months ago it would have read,

Democrats Block Vote On Webb Amendment

Frist Threatens Nuclear Option

LOL

It’s al-Qaeda, All the Way Down

Simple Answers to Simple Questions

The Peter Principle

The Unassurred Michael Gerson

We long for love, harmony and sympathy because we are intended by a Creator to find them.

No, we long for them because they have been lost to us. We do not love ourselves as we ought, so we do not love others as we ought. We do however, note that we are not loved by others as we ought to be loved by them and so we are either hurt by that or strike out at those who are slighting our feelings. So we drive the disharmony and the lack of sympathy from within our own self, because we love ourselves more than we love others.

This requires no belief system whatsoever, no God, nor moral compass, nor philosophical underpinning. It is a fundamental flaw, human nature in all its’ glory. If we are indeed intended to find these things then they must be found within, within our own hearts.

To the evil all things are evil, to the good, all things are good. That you should coin Axis of Evil speaks to me of a conspiracy against good, and perhaps in that regard against yourself, and your self interests.

Unfortunately that would imply that you have judged both yourself and others as being either good, or evil, a thing which the theist cannot do without committing blasphemy, since the authority to judge those things is not and has never been the purview of man to judge. To judge another is to put oneself on equal with God, or for the sake of my faith, the Christ, whom God has given the authority to judge to.

Having judged, you then condemned, and loosed the dogs of war upon the many for the sins of the few against not God but other men. To cover this crime you speak of national security, and again judge so as to absolve yourself of the deaths of the innocents.

Even so, we are all guilty as are you, to one degree or another, believer or non believer. That the atheist have the upper hand for the moment is only the chance of history that most men claim to believe in todays world and slaughter, exploit and abuse one another as though they do not.

Even the Christ was condemned by those who believed, and executed by theists, and if one is a follower of that one, yet he did not condemn either the judges or the executioners, but asked Good to forgive them, because in these things especially, man does not know what he is doing.

Good Night, not Good Bye

One of the things that occurred to me this morning taking pictures was no matter how beautiful pictures of sunrises and sunsets may or may not be, depending on ones own tastes, the static beauty of my work will pale in comparison to the Beautify America work of Lady Bird Johnson. She will be remembered by some of us every spring along the highways of Texas, but she will remind many for as long as these roads exist, that she has passed this way and left us perhaps, a greater legacy than the Presidents.

And There Was A Morning

The Earth is Mine,

and everything in it.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

And There Was A Second Evening

Tell Me of your works oh son of man

That I might look on in wonder

Why Pakistan Matters

We tend to get a little myopic about national security issues in relation to states that somehow or another impact the war on terra. This article ought to reopen some eyes to the fact that not everyone who is not an enemy is a friend either. Right John?

Pakistan heading for a crackdown

When the commander of the Central Air Command of the US Air Force, Lieutenant-General Gary L North, touched down on Tuesday at the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) base in Sargodha, northwest of Lahore in Pakistan’s heartland Punjab province, the poignancy of the moment couldn’t have been lost on him.

The chief of staff of the PAF, Air Chief Marshal Tanvir Mehmood Ahmed, and the US ambassador to Pakistan, Anne W Peterson, were waiting on the tarmac to receive the US general.

North was arriving after a continuous eight-hour flight across the Atlantic. He was flying an F-16 Fighter Falcon capable of carrying nuclear missiles. Another F-16 accompanied him. They are the first of a fleet of a dozen F-16 aircraft that the PAF will receive in the coming months “at very nominal prices” (to quote Ahmed). Pakistan, in addition, may get a further batch of 16 F-16s, bringing the total to 28.

Obviously the United States is delivering a nuclear delivery system to a nation that harbors, according to todays reports, a resurgent Al Qaeda in the provinces. That is the short term strategic interest in the nation,

The huge US gesture comes at a critical juncture in the geopolitics of the region. What emerges is that the summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), scheduled to take place in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, in a little more than a month, is already casting its shadow on Pakistan’s regional role. Islamabad has barely disguised its interest in forging closer ties with the SCO, and the summit opens a window of opportunity. The SCO comprises China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

From the proceedings of the meeting of the SCO’s Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) held in Bishkek on Monday in preparation of the summit on August 16, trends are available that must definitely be annoying Washington. There is no mistaking that the SCO is slouching toward Afghanistan and Pakistan with an irresistible offer of mutual engagement in terms of shared interests of regional security and stability.

That’s the big picture strategic interest in the area, and one of the things I don’t believe Davy Crocketts Republicans in Iraq have, or are considering.

Has Al Qaeda Become a Song

or is it still a band?

The Surge, Catching the Inside Wave

Advertisements for myself

Congratulations to the Wall Street Journal for letting Kimberly Kagan, who assisted her husband Fred in coming up with the idea for “the surge”, provide us with a report card on “the surge“.

Tomorrow: Lynne Cheney on why Dick Cheney is the best Vice President ever.

Wonder which four points she worked on.

Critics Say Glenn Beck Needs to Burn Out Naturally

Just saying.

Because That’s Where The Money Is

Massive Bank Heist in Central BaghdadGuards Pull off Inside Job, Netting $282 Million Cash

No reports if the money was still on pallets.

More Republican Wolfjaw

McCain Official Busted on Sex Charge

An official with the John McCain presidential campaign was arrested for allegedly soliciting oral sex from a policeman in Florida yesterday.

Bob Allen, a member of the Florida House of Representatives, is one of six Florida co-chairs for the Arizona Republican senator’s 2008 White House bid.

Would That He Had Done So Too

Summer 2007 Is Eerily Similar to Summer 2001 July 12, 2007 11:57 AM

In the summer of 2001, we had numerous, high quality intelligence reports that indicated something was going to happen. We did not know where, when, how or specifically who.

The CIA suggested an attack would likely come in Saudi Arabia, but they did not rule out an attack in the U.S. It was of deep concern, and the president and national security principals were repeatedly informed of that concern. I ordered counterterrorism units to cancel leaves and directed FAA, FBI and other domestic agencies to send out warnings.

Overseas, we urged DOD to put its bases on high Defense Condition status and to move ships from vulnerable harbors in the Middle East. State Department embassies were directed to go on heightened security status.

We did not issue a public alert because we had no “actionable intelligence”; we did not have any specific advice for the public.

Pretty much where we are today if one gives Chertoff the benefit of the doubt, which I am inclined to do, for the time being. Of course it would be helpful if the President and his “staff” were to do things differently this time too.

Again, I think we are just witnessing the effects of this administrations incompetence and politiclization of every facet of their activities, with the end result that some people I won’t mention just go negative out of habit.

That doesn’t mean I don’t or won’t go negative out of habit either, but I hate having to do the political calculus of a terrorist threat, not because it is difficult to do, but because it should as a national security issue be unnecessary. Update:

In a swipe at critics of US policy, the report said progress towards political reconciliation had been hampered by “increasing concern among Iraqi political leaders that the United States may not have a long-term commitment to Iraq”.

Which is another reason for staying negative on the pundits and wisemen of Washington, since if they are in the “know,” they sure haven’t been able to rise above the game that is so obvious to the DFH and run of the mill citoyens out here in the boondocks. It would seem to me that political reporters and commentators would also have political views, which is no problem, unless it affects their ability to actual think through a story and report it for what it is.

On that note I don’t think it is the reporters on the beat so much not knowing what is going on, as it is the broadcasters they report to that have fubared the system, being the first line of the elite.

Pretty Good Assessment

In my humble opinion.

A lot of what Lugar has to say on energy is intuitive, but he offered a couple of exceptionally nuanced observations today. Here’s one:

“Although securing oil supplies was not the proximate motivation for the U.S. intervention in Iraq, Persian Gulf oil is highly relevant to the difficulties associated with extricating ourselves from that country. Having set in motion conditions in Iraq that could threaten regional stability, American and, indeed, global analysts rightly are concerned that if instability spreads it could threaten oil flows. Moreover, the supposed American greed for oil is used as an excuse by a myriad of Middle Eastern propagandists. The oil dependence of the United States and the West is a pillar of Iranian foreign policy.”

He forgets, or perhaps it wasn’t germane to the discussion at hand, but the same propaganda ploy is used by the drill everywhere lobbyist and apologist in DC too. IOKIYAR.

No…

I am not exporting fish to China for re-importation.

Gimme Three Steps, Gimme Three Steps,

Gimme Three Steps, Gimme Three Steps,
Gimme Three Steps, Gimme Three Steps,
Gimme Three Steps, Gimme Three Steps,
Gimme Three Steps, Gimme Three Steps,
Gimme Three Steps, Gimme Three Steps,
Gimme Three Steps, Gimme Three Steps,
Gimme Three Steps, Gimme Three Steps,
Gimme Three Steps, Gimme Three Steps,
Gimme Three Steps, Gimme Three Steps,

The record’s stuck, The record’s stuck,
The record’s stuck, The record’s stuck,
The record’s stuck, The record’s stuck

Woodward’s New Scoop via Atrios

One of the Iraq Study Groups problems was failing to study W.

By that I mean, if they were serious they should have done it before the world knew they were doing it. I think that that was my complaint back then, that that was not the sort of thing you nail to the Presidents arse in public.

Between Iraq and a Hard Place

The real problem is that most pro war Americans have nothing to loose in Iraq but their pride.

Well, If We Do It, It’s Different

Turkey: US arms end up in Kurdish hands

WASHINGTON — Turkey’s ambassador to Washington said Wednesday that U.S. weapons have been turning up in the hands of Kurdish guerrillas staging attacks in Turkey.

Nabi Sensoy said that the United States is not doing enough to influence Kurdish politicians in key positions in the Iraqi government to crack down on the Kurdistan Workers Party or PKK, which has been fighting for an independent Kurdistan within Turkey for decades. He said that Turkey has been pressing the United States to ensure that U.S. weapons supplied to Kurdish forces within the Iraqi army are not funneled to the PKK.

So then,

In the case of one group, the P.K.K. or the Kurdistan Workers Party and they are along with Israel sponsoring them to carry out guerrilla raids inside Iran and its part of a much wider plan by the United States to foment discontent and actual terrorist activities by ethnic Iranians in various parts of Iran. And when I was in northern Iraq, I was able to determine that that kind of activity is going on from Iraqi soil under the Kurdish controlled areas of Iraq, into Iran.

I know there is no easy way to get either side to quit attacking each other through proxies, nor is Iran any sort of place I would care to live, but there should be a way of addressing the governments double standards when those standards are being used in a propaganda campaign to start another war, in the midst of losing two at the present.

Four Phasers of A Rock

This will be good.

Update: Reckon not.

Final Note: I ain’t buying it.

Should the Senate Use The Nuclear Option?

If anything it’s worse than this as Senate Republicans have been filibustering just about everything. Everything on Iraq certainly. And this is the sense of ‘filibuster’ as it has been used more or less continuously for a decade.

Maybe the “press” would pick up on the tactic! tactics!

Notes on the Stock Market

The money has Chertoff with the Boston Police.

Fashion for Baby Boomers

Accessorise your maturity. Grow Up.

And There Was A Morning

Where, now, is the path to where light abides,

and darkness, where does it reside?

Just to be clear

I don’t think we can or should disregard what Chertoff is saying, either. But it would appear that this administration has done everything in its’ power to shoot itself in the foot, and its’ friends in the face for short term political purposes, namely the one Republican Party state.

We cannot I think, impugn every professional intelligence and police official because of the administration they are currently serving under, any more than we can discern which ones are speaking for legitimate reasons of National Security. That is in fact the crux of the problem.

There are of course some twits that will swallow every hook line and sinker that a Republican throws out because they are “conservatives,” just as there are those on this side of the aisle who will do the same thing for the same reasons.

The problem for the rest of us is sorting out the wheat from the chaff when the winds of politics are swirling around the harvest of information. Hardly good timing for the media to have lost the confidence of the American people for the corporate interests of shareholders. Perhaps news is not a profit center after all, if one looses everything but the money to make them so.

But in the end we need to take a cold, hard analysis of where we are, and where all the players are really standing on this issue, and many more.

You Can’t Have It Both Ways, Boys

Either this administration is losing both wars or it is not. If the war on terror is being successfully fought with the sacrificing of American liberty then the threat level should be decreasing not increasing. If the military industrial complex and police state is winning the war then where are the results?

If none of the original objective have been met, then they have not been met. If after six years of these objective not being met are any indication then the policies in place to deal with these objectives are failing, or have already failed.

To not change course is not being stubborn, it is not being resolved, it is being stupid. Next time maybe you’ll listen to the dirty fucking hippies.

It’s In Your Head, Man

Leaving the politics of terrorism aside for the moment, I want to talk about the human side of it and perhaps put it back into perspective, which is not where the politicians want it to be. In fact as much as the individuals may abhor the acts of terrorism, the business of politics and the infrastructures that support and profit from politics have a built in cash cow selling fear.

One of the most important things to try and remember is that any given terrorist attack at home, or in Britain and Spain, for that matter, is a singular event that occurs at a randomly haphazard time for the citizens of those and our countries. These events have become weekly and to some daily events if one is living in Iraq or Afghanistan. There is no question something close by is going to be blown up, and someone you know and love perhaps, is going to be killed today.

We should not delude ourselves either, that we of the quivering knees are not doing as much blowing up of things and killing of innocents as are the terrorists and resistances in those countries. It doesn’t require a great leap of imagination to put oneself in their shoes, and I am sure fighting them over there so we don’t have to fight them over here has a whole different perspective to the Iraqi or Afghan people than to those of you buying peas from the MSM, and Democratic and Republican Parties.

One of the things I thought about on the way to shoot photos last evening was how secluded the area was, and that being less than five miles from the Post Office in the middle of town. Walking along the shorelines around here there are three different snakes that one is apt to run into, four if one is lucky, that are poisonous. The biggest danger however is that the normally shy birds of the wetlands have picked these secluded areas to nest and so they tend to be more defensive and aggressive than one becomes accustomed to, and so they are better subjects for photos, and can swoop down and knock your hat off as you go along in shallow waters filled with oyster shells that will cut the tar out of you if you become startled and fall. But you can’t let the fears at the back of your mind stop you from going where you wish to go to do what you wish to do.

Since none of those encounters occurred it was basically a ten mile hike that resulted in a couple of dozen most excellent pictures, which regrettably do not do justice to the sunset that actually was on display. The camera is good at capturing light, but not ambiance. This is true whether on the blog or television. Technology allows are minds to fool ourselves that we are actually some place we are not, and involved in things we are not, and to do so in ways that miss much of the picture and events.

Because of the impact of visual memory on the mind, I would hope that the leaders of the diverse communities, religious and political in suburban and urbane areas would spend a little more effort in getting their communities to intermingle so as to dispel the visual only perceptions of their communities minds of each other. If one wishes to lead perhaps they have to so the old fashion way, which is not to gather a following, but to see a path forward and point out the path to others.

Flagpie Slates July 8-11, 2007

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

And God Saw That It Was Good

Heaven is My Throne, and Earth My Footstool

What sort of House will You build for Me?

Best think twice before you go squeezing those triggers boys.

My Gut Feeling

has concluded that the new NIE

While I know this is practically a taboo topic, because it was the good and righteous war, but can we remember what the point of invading Afghanistan was?

WASHINGTON (AP) – The government has concluded that al-Qaida has rebuilt its operating capability to a level not seen since the summer of 2001, The Associated Press has learned.

Which just about has poor Tweety terrorized!, I tell ya, terrorized!, and Mr. Chertoff looking for Mylanta in MyGeorgia, (it’s the damned internets!, I tell ya!,) which should keep everyone from asking if in fact this administration has not lost two wars for the price of four.

Of course I don’t guess this is what Tony Snow meant by more going on than speeches in the well of the Senate. All of this is from the gut, as I said, since I wouldn’t say things like, “these guys are a pain in the balls.” So guts it is.

Setting The Record Straight

For those of you who watch Lou Dobbs and might be under the impression that the US Congress is a unicameral legislature;

[T]he reality — at least in the House — is that federal lawmakers have held more votes on legislation and other matters in the first six months of this year than they did during the entire 2006 session of the Republican-controlled 109th Congress. That was when GOP leaders decided to defer action to the 110th Congress, now controlled by Democrats, on most of the 2006 spending measures.

via dKos. That might coincided with the under reported pork barrel spending earmarks of the Cash and Carry President in the last budget they passed, or perhap in the current bills under consideration, being 37% of the total requests. It doesn’t fit the agenda I know, but I thought you ought to know anyway. Just to be honest, I haven’t found the 37 percent figure i mentioned either.

Deja Vu Redux

Beware the Iran Hawks

I asked Sen. Joseph Biden, Del., chairman of Senate Foreign Relations and Democratic Presidential candidate at the Sperling luncheon last Thursday whether there was any way to avoid spewing nuclear debris into the air if the United States bombed Iran’s nuclear facilities. Also whether taking on Iran while U. S. forces were bogged down in Iraq was feasible. His answer struck me as the right one: “No and no.”

You ought to read the whole piece, so the remark, “at least someone is thinking,” doesn’t sound so unusual as may be thought.

Pigeons Leaving Bench Marks on Benchmarks

The Benchmark Blame Game

The weak and embattled Iraqi government is supposed to make changes which the US at the height of its power in Iraq failed to make stick. At stake are policies deeply divisive among Iraqis that are to be introduced at the behest of a foreign power, the US, in a way that makes the Iraqi government look as if it is a client of America.

For American consumption,

Paradoxically, the benchmarks suppose that the Iraqi government is, at one and the same time, so powerful that it can introduce and implement unpopular policies, but is also under the thumb of the United States.

For Iraqi digestion.

Mr. Chertoff’s Stomach, Mr. Ignaratius’ Unity

When the subject is terrorism, people like Ignatius seem to have trouble grasping that political disagreement is real. Let me put it as plainly as possible: The reason Americans disagree about how to respond to the threat of terrorism is because they have radically different views on the matter.

For instance, my view is that Ignatius and his ilk have helped create a fear of terrorism out of all proportion to the actual threat terrorism poses; that by doing so they helped drag America into a disastrous war with Iraq; and that they’re now helping to create the conditions that may enable an even more disastrous war with Iran.

All rolled into one!

Telling It Like It Is

Sheehan’s Rebellion

“I was a lifelong Democrat only because the choices were limited. The Democrats are the party of slavery and were the party that started every war in the 20th century except the other Bush debacle. The Federal Reserve, permanent federal (and unconstitutional) income taxes, Japanese concentration camps and, not one, but two atom bombs dropped on the innocent citizens of Japan were brought to us via the Democrats. Don’t tell me the Democrats are our ‘Saviors,’ because I am not buying it, especially after they bought and purchased more caskets and more devastating pain when they financed and co-facilitated more of George’s abysmal occupation and they are allowing a melt down of our representative Republic by allowing the evils of the executive branch to continue unrestrained by their silent complicity.”

The only clarification I would ask of Mz. Sheehan here is what is an innocent civilian? Civilians make a choice as well as their governments, albeit that choice is often based on emotions, the manipulation of lies and unspoken facts used to produce the emotional response being the objective of the state, furthered by the civilian press, rather than any knowledge of those facts which would make them complicit to the the decisions of their betters, if they in fact were not in charge of their own emotions.

It seems like ages ago, but, in 1996, Republicans were decrying our interventionist foreign policy and denouncing the global crusading of the Clintonites as nothing short of lunacy. A Republican Congress threatened to withhold funding from the Kosovo war of “liberation” – showing a lot more guts than their Democratic doppelgängers would exhibit a decade later.

Mr. Raimondo here, I think, points out the political maturity Mr. Ware would desire, as inconsistent with political convenience that is the hallmark of the American political process, which is an indicator of the culture from whence it springs

.”House Speaker Nancy Pelosi dedicated San Francisco’s new federal building yesterday saying it was ‘a model for the rest of the country’ despite problems that include wildly fluctuating temperatures, blinding glare, and elevators that only stop every third floor.

“The skip-stop elevators were deliberately designed so that employees have to climb stairs in the 18-story building. … Thom Mayne, the building’s architect, said during the dedication that federal officials figured out that the stair-walking exercise should extend the average user’s life span by seven days and six hours.”

Fortunately these features are also being built into the new embassy in Baghdad, which seven days and six hours should come in useful to the residents there as well.

War on the Wealthy,

War on the Poor, War on the Middle Class,
War on the ideology of something
that ought just kiss my ass.
War as an answer to the question
an analogy for the reform
think and say whatever you wish
the question awaits to deform.

Here it comes again

That’s “Train Going Nowhere” by Savoy Brown

The Administration Is Going To Lie About Something

I have a gut feeling that between now and the next terrorist attack the Bush administration is going to lie to the American people. It’s not actionable intelligence, just a gut feeling.

Once this gut feeling has been justified, it should be easier to go along with Lieberman and the Israelis gut feelings about Iran, and easier to say I told you so, especially to you gutless wonders who happen to wander by thinking with your brains.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Political Maturity!? Give Me A Break

One of the many reporters I appreciate and basically trust, as far as reporting goes is Michael Ware of CNN, although he rarely gives out enough nuts and bolts in his television reports to accurately judge his conclusions and observations. To be honest I haven’t exactly gone looking for any written reports by him either, which I will do later when my lazy ass is finished with the sunset pictures taken tonight and the dishes are washed and put away.

At any rate I have to agree that political maturity in America is a much needed commodity, and given the current administration will remain so for the remainder of its’ term and probably well into the next. Inertia is political too.

One of the major problems that I have found over the years with being too mature, (which I would also include being cooperative to some extent,) with Bushco is how quickly the rhetorical aspect of any program is adopted while the guts of it are ripped out. I figure I was burned on the 911 commission issue, and since then I have not been to inclined to give them much quarter on other policies that may be of some import, simply because they are not honest in words or deeds.

This lack of honesty, across the board I might add, has and continues to erode any mature cooperation between the political partisan factions in the United States plain and simply. Given the nature of the administration and the times inwhich we live, it has become all to easy to blame the MSM for not seeing through the BS at any of many divergent points when the more jaded amongst could plainly see the prevarications. However, even if one can and sometime does overlook this myopia of the MSM, it does not lessen the extent of the damage that the Bush administration has inflicted on bipartisanship in the country as a whole, or the Congress in particular.

Indeed the MSM and hence the public still ascribe most of the resistance to bipartisanship to the politics of Iraq, and in the Republicans case, to immigration. These are the over lays of the Attorney General scandals, the Plame Affair, and now the Surgeon General’s rebuke, which present a piucture of one one does not wish to do business with.

There is no logical argument that can be made to convince me or anyone else who has become aware of the mendacity as the policy position of this administration, that is going to look for a reason to believe them in any of the pronouncements that they should make in regard to any policy.

Any argument for Iraq will be bound to fail for those reasons, and so I and many others do not believe they are being put forth now with any more honesty than any previous policy, strategic or tactical, pronouncements have been. To be blunt they have lied to the American people about everything.

There is going to be a big push to blame any defeat of US Forces on the Democrats and the antiwar activists, as was the case in Viet Nam, thereby avoiding the true nature of failure in policy, from its’ inception. Once a war is started it remains ugly until it is finished, regardless whether that war was justified or not. The question left begging is where does our responsibility towards Iraq as a nation end?

I would tend to think it was very much a responsibility of the government of the Unted States to the government and people of Iraq, if we were to have a government that could be trusted to carry through in any meaningful way in any of its’ policies, which history does not support. It is in fact very much of its’ history to see a light at the end of every tunnel, as it is to be greeted by the train coming through to run the policy over.

Since we cannot, as Americans, trust our own government, then how shall we ask any other nation to do so? It would be the equivalent of the Muriel boat lift from Cuba, turned loose on the world. We are obligated to the world, as Americans, to present to the world an honest government, if we are in truth seeking honest and open relationships with other nations. Since the current administration is neither open nor honest with us Americans, there is no room for maturity, political or otherwise.

Ed Note: I updated the spelling in the title, but left the rest of the post alone, even though it needed more work.

Good News For Joe Lieberman!

Sir I have successfully run al Qaeda out of Podunk without firing a shot. Thank you for not invading Podunk and emboldening them here. It is this bipartisan spirit that we should encourage over there as well as way over there too.

I am also pleased to know that we are there to stop the Iranians. I thought it was WMD, and democracy.

Let’s see Joe. You invade Iraq for a couple of wrong reasons, distort what the Iranian President said, twist that into Iran traing al Qaeda, and so we have to bomb their bases of operation. Like the Soviets did to those other meddlers in Afghanistan who were supplying Stingers to the resistance that later became al Qaeda. Double Standards for Two Faces.

John Phillip Sousa and the Conservative War Bandango

I am inclined to go along with our more conservative thinkers and so have voluntarily decided, (in my most conservative of logic,) that we need to play more John Phillip Sousa and louder.

This will enable them to not hear any demands for the plans they are wishing to fall off the moon when and if such plans do fall, and such requests in the form of demands, as are made.

It would be helpful if the American people would fall into step behind them as the band leads the horses, and of course the horses lead the people, who mind neither the view, nor noise, nor the people following them, when done for whatever good cause may inspire them to go marching behind them in the manure.

Now far be it for me to remind the local Conservatives For Enabling To Not Embolden America’s Enemies Who Are Everywhere, CFETNEAEWAE, that they can no longer cling to the hope that the people will wish to listen to the Generals now, after they themselves have so resolutely refused to do so for all of these years, even if the Generals remind them that there is no military victory achievable without a political victory, as they did before the war, and still being the two sides of the same coin. To do so would only further embolden the Generals.

I think one should give serious thoughts to the thoughts of conservatives that miscalculated the results of the invasion previous to it, and all due weight should be assigned to their prognostications now about the dire circumstances that will befall one and all when we withdraw. If experience has taught us anything, it is that experience is a teacher, and being of a conservative bent I have nothing to learn and am in no need of any teachers whatsoever.

So I will make a stand on the historical analogies that may or may not fit the facts, but do fit the time frame allotted to me by those ersatz almighties, repetition and John Phillip Sousa, to ensure that we are marching to victoriously, glorious redemption of the Tuba and Monuments to American Stupidity.

My conservatism having drawn to a close, I, with a heavy sigh, return to seriousness.

Precipitous Withdrawal, Neocons and the Woody

It is an acheivement I suppose that the Republican’ts have at least come to the conclusion that we cannot withdraw precipitously, which would have been a better understood concept prior to the penetration.

edited for crudity.

On the Historical Trail Of A Unique View

Then I hear the President discussing how the Japanese where once sworn enemies of the American people, and having filled DC up with cherry trees launched an attack on America to inspire him years later as he looked for something, anything, positive to be historical about.

So pre 911.

Sure John, Sure

IIRC the Congress just passed themselves a four percent pay increase to keep up with the ever non existent inflation, and now Mr. McCain’t is decrying, I tell Ya, decrying, the provisions in the Defense Funding Measure that may cause the pResident to veto it because it contains a three and a half percent increase for the military pay scales.

I suppose the discrepancy is to made up in all the cheap cost of living overseas goods that can be purchased and sent home duty free, like those five dollar Iraqi carpets and such. I mean how will the soldiers make it?

Good Morning Sunshine

Losing Their Religion

Conservatives and the Presidency

Almost to a man, the postwar conservatives who coalesced around William F. Buckley’s National Review associated presidential power with liberal activism and viewed Congress as the “conservative” branch. In 1960 NR senior editor Willmoore Kendall, who had been one of Buckley’s professors at Yale, published an influential article called “The Two Majorities,” which made that case. In 1967, Russell Kirk and coauthor James McClellan praised the late Robert A. Taft, “Mr. Conservative,” for insisting that war had to be a last resort, threatening as it did to “make the American President a virtual dictator, diminish the constitutional powers of Congress, contract civil liberties, injure the habitual self-reliance and self-government of the American people, distort the economy, sink the federal government in debt, [and] break in upon private and public morality.”

Well what do you know about that?

Flagpie Slats July 4-9, 2007

Monday, July 9, 2007

OK I’m Sorry Mr. Kristol,

The last two post were called for in more urbane language which I have found to be seriously lacking, as directed toward or to you, as case may deserve. I shall come up with an equitable penance for repentance in impugning any aspect of your writing save those of political nature and views, or touching on subjects that may be of political nature and views.

I even apologize for the last poems since I keyed them into the blog in “real time” -a11 dimensions, and knowing poems are like fish and company and should perhaps be given three days to see if they’re kin or not.

I can do that because this my blog, and my blog and in Your My Face and My Your Face and Their My My Faces is between you and I and all those other Faces My Faces in the tubes.

Since I have yet to have my remarks even justified, I will work on the assumption that you have not heard about the other two post and presumably, this one either, since in keeping with your Mid East policy I am seeing what I wish to see instead of what may actually be there, as it suits my world view of happiness and joy better than something I haven’t thought of as of yet, and it seems plausible to me. I am wishing for better success in your strategy however, than you have been in yours.

It is my inconsiderable opinion sir, that your world vision, (the neocon visionary thing about Max or Pax Americana,) spawned and born along in the cold war years remains locked in the strategic vision of pre September 11th, 2001, and Iraq remains a war of choice in the same way as Viet Nam with many of the same hawk squawking. There is a world view there, an idealism that America can and should do all that it can to make the world a better place to live in for all peoples. You still believe by force, as you deem place and time, necessary and permissible regardless of cost to others in Marshall Plan after Marshall Plan abroad, first killing them to rebuild them into the next wonder blunder of nation building. The impetus is different but the plot has not changed since Julius wasn’t Ceasar either.

America was always better off working, (but not in pay anymore,) apparently it is better to be blogged. At any rate, there you have it.

Eugene (EU 2bff) Debbs & Thriving Populist Socialism

the final battle of the titanic movement
winching the jaw of Lou Dobbs ergo Maximus
en quid pro quo of the indispensable cogs
that wheel the society without axle to the stars.
So tenuous plays the day fires that skitter
and skip across the laborious trickling
river of man, always expectation’s well met
within the ballooning gruel. I still see light
stopped or not, but only to inform dead flowers
of witherings first pastel blush still unknown,
yet was. Do not fear me – I am a gatherer of the dead
made alive to it all to note it all is all, it’s all
I ever ended up being in this stream of mine counted
by clocks for greasy moments smudging the tocks.
One has to know. Then one knows. But why call
off the dogs? Absolving hunters, they,
most useful of idiots man’s best friend,
without conception of the plan blithely
unfolding in the slurry of physicality
flickering in and out of being, behold
another sail still tarp for other purposes
in the immense theory of disappearings.

Apparently I Have Concluded to Apologize To Mr. Kristol

And so I shall someday.

Well There May Be Bugs On Some Of You Mugs

I Don’t Know,

do you?

Sadr in Iran or Najaf?Despite Denials, Mixed Reports Spark Speculation Shi’ite Leader Has Left Iraq

A Sadrist legislator is rejecting claims by the US military that the Shi’ite leader has fled to Iran, accusing the Americans of propagating rumors to “undermine the Sadrist bloc.”

Have they called the police?

Of course I would be remiss, but is UBL in Afghanistan or Pakistan?

Yeah, Me Too

I know I’m late on this, but so what?

When the Bullet Hits the Bone

Depths of Difficulty

The truth is that Karl Rove is probably right, and Republican whiners are quite wrong. The White House is not in any difficulty with respect to Iraq. That would only be the case if a significant number of Republicans thought that doing the right thing was more important than fealty to Dear Leader. But that isn’t the case, and it isn’t likely to be the case. The White House will keep doing what it’s doing, Republicans will fail to join with Democrats to oppose them, the occupation of Iraq will continue, Republicans will lose many House and Senate seats, and, with a little luck, the presidency.

It isn’t the White House that fails to understand the “depths of difficulty” they’re in, it’s Republicans in Congress.

Sad and true.

You See?

Yeah the cheerleaders and the football stars
they will lead the way, a new how do you do
with a new hair do, a barber will save the day –
for something that no one wants to know,
while the stoners and the loners look like losers
as they ignore the whole damned thing in their own way,
the same page works if it’s the same book
So don’t anyone look to see…
I know I’ll be writing this little poem,
yes, the one with identical cees.

What a Drag It is Getting Old

America is depressed, and needs some downers. HT TV

ED Note: Life is hard. You know enough to eat, decent housing, educational opportunities, some liberty still left, sigh.

Ed Note: Since this isn’t a newspaper I want to clarify that depression is a real and ongoing condition for many people. I may get a touch of it myself sometimes too. All I know is, “you get better when you get busy,” works for me but then we aren’t all the same, and I get more like bummed out than depressed. Being lazy may mask that though.

Kinky Bushman Logic

According to , this wonder of the Bushco mind soldiers that…

And since, in the words of Taylor’s lawyer, the president is “a person whom [Taylor] admires and for whom she has worked tirelessly for years”, she doesn’t want to testify and thinks she shouldn’t have to.

… think the commander in chief is a wanker they have fought tirelessly for for years, they shouldn’t have to go back to the Mothers of all War Zones.

God save the Kink

Should We Launch Bill Kristol To The Moon? (Redeemed)

On a rocket without a capsule? I think he is brave enough. He has got to be one of the stupidest intellectuals intractable people on the planet. You know it would probably be helpful if all these wise men were required to spend a year framing houses or being iron workers on tall buildings, so they could grow a pair. before spouting off with the hair they have on what they have. gratuitous insult.

Edited for purposes obvious even to me, since it is quite beneath Mr. Kristol’s dignity for me to insult him that way. Not mine of course, or I should not have said so, and with that in mind would have better remarked that I respected both his accomplishments and education, which sad proves the case made against education, especially of the obtuse. My error is regrettable as is unfortunately, my spelling.

Beware Republicans Bearing Sandbags

Over the course of the last week the Republican’t Senators have gone from obstruction of everything to pro action on Iraq. Yeah, Right.

Best I can tell this just another ruse to give the impression of doing something, if talking is what you consider doing something, while dragging the war on and on. In that vein I would expect absolutely no proposals from the Republicans, either initiated by them or in response to Democratic proposals, just negativity toward whatever the Democrats propose, because as you well know, negativity works, especially with the media.

Given that terrorism is too complex to discuss on television, and that mediums propensity for getting sound bites that are the informational equivalence of marsh mellows, the American public will continue to stumble bumble around with whatever disinformation and misinformation that they have heretofore shown no inclination to disabuse themselves of.

I don’t really blame that medium either, they could try and do it differently, but I doubt they would attract the now Sesame Street attention spanned viewing public. Perhaps if it were to be included in an Harry Potter book.

In the long run terrorism and the frustration that is its’ mother has to be addressed both policy change when the grievance is real, and education and persuasion when it is not. This cannot be done by the electronic mediums, not perhaps by the dead tree presses, but IMHO, in the pulpits and public forums of the various governments.

The problem with that here in America is that the politicians barely, rarely listen to the American people and foreign voices go ignored by both. With an international crisis such as terrorism the parochial sandbagging that the Republicans are engaging in is only slightly less counter productive to parochial politics of the Democrats, because the terrorism is coming from the very quarters being ignored by one and all.

Until America becomes psychologically mature enough to listen to the world without being offended by the opinions of the world’s majority I don’t think we can address the source of terrorism, the frustration of unequal distributions of diverse forms of the worlds wealth. This, (for you lunk heads,) is not just financial and economic wealth, but that of education and self fulfillment within the framework of the individuals culture that may be based on very different perceptions of what those things are. Whatever those differences may be however, they do not, because they cannot, diminish those that we hold dear ourselves.

It would be only natural for the Republicans to sandbag the Iraqi War issue, since that seems to an American trait with all issues we do not wish to address. We are however, no matter how much we wish not to be, citizens of the world, and Americans must learn to be good citizens there as well as at home.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

American LooWater

Court Upholds Warrantless Internet Snooping

amigoro writes to let us know about an appeals court ruling on Friday that holds that federal agents can snoop on an individual’s web surfing, email and all other forms of Internet communication habits without a warrant. The court found recording this kind of information to be analogous to the use of a pen register. In 1979 the Supreme Court ruled that this technique did not constitute a search for Fourth Amendment purposes.

Well there goes the blog traffic. So Senator Spincter, does this mean, given that you are a former prosecutor and big woody of the Patriot Act, that the FBI can access the NSA stuff they pinch off of my Windows OS, or do they have to do their own pen trapping. I ask because being on a dial up and so somewhat inhibited in my freedom of information access rights, I don’t wish more snoops clogging up the pipe with more splitters. Anymore loop backs and I am apt to start getting last years pages again. (For you that would be like hearing FDR on the radio again.)

Shuck and Jaw the shock and awe of Iraqi Escalation

Listening to General Evasion on Wolf’s Situation NAFU Room this morning makes me wonder if the General or Wolf speak and hear the same language.

SO I’ll ask again, how long will it take for the second Iraqi brigade to be ready to stand up in the Southern province? This isn’t, or shouldn’t be, an unknown if like all other things military it has been planned and scheduled.

Or is this something that should just be snuck into the conversation later like a provision of the Patriot Act? Maybe if Wolf and the Generals went behind close doors, like the Spector wants to do with Karl and Co., and you know, all they would have to do then is tell me when it was going to happen and I’ll write up the transcript and get it to them lickety split.

Maybe we should at least paint all the doors in the Capital green. They would match the zones and they could have all of their trists behind the green door.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Resolutions, We Make Resolutions

Given that I almost pulled off the last one without a hitch, and I think it did wonders for my sanity, I am going to go out on a limb and try not to write exactly like I think, which is like a sailor talks.

Seriously, foul language doesn’t bother me when other people use it, so no harm no foul. I am aware however that it does bother other people, so I am going to do my utmost not to foul up and use those words that others consider foul. After all that’s why bovine scatology is scattered throughout the ecology, it too can be poetic when one wishes to go apoplectic.

You are of course free to interject the Anglo-Saxon equivalents for the full flavor of the post if you wish, but this sailor is going to try and side anchor it.

For Non Economists

Delinquencies and Defaults for UberNerds

I have no intention of exhausting the topics of delinquency and default today. My goal is rather more modest than that; I merely want to introduce to the non-mortgage-backed-security world a few definitions of terms, in hopes that perhaps some of these startling numbers being thrown around in the press can be interpreted. Besides that, it’s too early in the day to start drinking, so we might as well waste our time being educated.

Another Public Service Message brought to you by Da Blogs.

Tilting At Windbags, Tilting At Scarecrows

I think Mr. Wolcott is on to something here and yes that includes sending a few bucks to Arthur.

Besides, like father, like son. It’s worth a few bucks just to PO oh Billy boy.

Like Kissing Your Sister

‘Cept Different.

Pretty Good, Not Bad, I Can’t Complain,

This pretty much dovetails, (yeah, I’m a carpenter, and I like that joint,) with what Atrios has been saying since, oh, about forever. Politics is fundamentally about disagreeing with other people on the issues, and resolving those issues is what politicians are supposed to do, (unless they are American politicians.)

Personally I don’t care if anyone agrees with what I say, and if I get too offensive they will probably go away. I think they call that “market forces,” when we aren’t discussing public opinions of popular issues, or dead people from rich men’s greed.

I think the poster is correct though, that the Press and the blogs are two different animals and anyone who thinks they should be more alike is just not living in the real world.

The blog vs media discussion is pretty ancient, now, and this isn’t meant to reopen what is in many ways an irrelevant discussion. Both are here, both use each other, both have something to offer (for a contemporary example, this longish video of a Fred Friendly seminar on government response to a pandemic also illustrates the dynamic between bloggers and the media in a ‘breaking news’ setting). In that context, I came across an interesting article as I was writing about the press and their coverage of the Iraq war debate.

Look the “press” or MSM has a load of people and technology at their disposal that would come in handy to a lot of us bloggers, but alas life is like that, ain’t it John?

Politicians probably hate the blogs more than the MSM, because now they are invited back out into the school yard where people tend to talk to dorks like the dorks they are.

Generals hate the blogs because we put two and two together and don’t come up with five stars. In fact some of us have read military history and can figure a lot of the stuff out that other experts in the blogs aren’t pointing out at any rate anyway.

All I can tell the modern pundits, politicians, and generals, is sorry girls, it is kinda like when radio, television and any other technology was developed, and I am sorry if the modern world frightens and confuses you. It did the Pope when Gutenburg invented the press too. Now get over it.

General Bullshit

I suppose it has to go with the turf since it is conventional logic, and Lord knows we don’t want to fly in the face of conventional logic, especially when that logic comes from the serious people, but maybe if the skeptical public could believe anything the good Generals and politicians were saying we could get on with the business at hand, you know like living life with out bullshit.

Sources

Oops:

The U.S. command in Baghdad this week ballyhooed the killing of a key al Qaeda leader but later admitted that the military had declared him dead a year ago……Brig. Gen. Kevin Bergner began his Monday news conference with a list of top insurgents either killed or captured in recent operations. He said they had been eliminated “in the past few weeks” and were “recent results.”

Meanwhile, Joe Lieberman, in his latest cut-and-paste job stated:

According to Brig. Gen. Kevin Bergner, the U.S. military spokesman in Baghdad, the Iranian government has been using the Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah to train and organize Iraqi extremists, who are responsible in turn for the murder of American service members.Sounds like it has been a pretty busy couple of days in agitprop for General Bergner.By the way, General Bergner is the new U.S. military spokesperson in Iraq coming directly from the White House.

Attaturk

Which kinda dovetails with this bullshit from Biden;Biden:

But I think — and this is naive maybe — I have confidence that the American people will put this in perspective. Like when one of the bloggers said, “We’re going to take back the Democratic Party.”

They don’t own the Democratic Party. What are they talking about?

Which goes from “when ONE of the bloggers said,” to “They don’t won the Democratic Party…” in a typical Washingtonian line of bullshit we should have all become so inured too. (ED Note: One doesn’t make, “the bloggers,” ya moron.) Anyone who doesn’t have their heads up their arses knows the Democratic Party and Republican Party are owned by the big business interests of the country, Joe, catch a fucking clue.

That the people may actually want to believe the generals, or politicians, gets lost in this sort of crap, and we wind up with no one believing anyone anymore.

So where the hell are you people trying to lead us, and if that is what the fuck you are really doing, when are you going to start leading you stupid MFs!?

Enough of your half assed games!Update for Biden remarks

I’m going to go out on a limb here and assume Biden is referring to the famous Eli Pariser quote about the Democratic Party, “We bought it, we own it, and we’re taking it back.” As the Executive Director of MoveOn at the time, he was speaking to “professional election losers” who run the Democratic Party, and by “we” he meant “the people.” No blogger in sight.

There you go, Biderman.

Friday, July 6, 2007

All Your Doctors Are Belong To US

Is My Doctor a Terrorist? Indeed.

Sneaking through the medical schools
leering down our lanes
the lunatics are on the move
the doctors are all insane.

It’s Simple!

A Bloody Media Mirror

I’ll Buy That

Standing up for our glorious failures

By: Roger Simon

[This award-winning column by Roger Simon was written on July 4, 1976, and has been reprinted every year since.]

I have done some pretty awful things in the name of journalism….

There you go again.

Thousand Will Die Of Old Age

FBI vows not to investigate, but urges survivors to invest for retirement.

I Got Your Breathing Space Right Here

Leaving on Baghdad Time, Leaving on Washington’s Time

There is another clock, not often mentioned, that sits in the Pentagon. It is the Broken Army clock, the service timeline for an exhausted force. Petraeus and his staff were deeply concerned when rumors of another tour extension, from the current 15 months for soldiers, spread in mid-June. “It would be a last resort,” Secretary of Defense Robert Gates told reporters — but troop morale is so iffy that Petraeus quietly urged his commanders to “get the word out” to their soldiers that the extension rumors were false.

According to the Broken Army clock, troop levels will begin to wane in March 2008, no matter what Congress decides in September; the current 20 brigade combat teams will be reduced to 15 by August 2008. There is growing speculation in the military that Bush will try to pre-empt the Petraeus testimony by announcing a gradual drawdown from 20 to 15 combat brigades later this summer. “As if that isn’t going to happen anyway,” a senior officer told me. “But it may give us some political breathing space” — that is, it may subvert the Democrats’ calls for a more rapid withdrawal — “if the President makes a big deal of announcing we’re drawing down.”

I don’t know when we’ll ever get out, But it will be long, long, long past time.

There are some other choice tidbits in the articles fourth page, which is where I was when I was here, but now I’m on page 1 and not here anymore. (via the last linked press.)(page2)(page 3

During my week in Iraq — including three days in combat zones — I heard only occasional explosions, mostly in the Green Zone,…)

Heh, Final update, probably in the kitchen of the new embassy compound.

Tie Your Blogger Down

Blogging Suit Tests First Amendment Limits

On June 19, Nashville-based Essent Healthcare, which operates the Paris Regional Medical Center in Texas, filed a suit against “The Paris site,” a blogging site set up by an anonymous operator in 2005 to post insider comments about the hospital. The suit alleges that “on several occasions the blog posted ‘false and misleading statements with malice,'” according to an article posted by iHealthBeat.org. “According to the lawsuit, the blogger falsely accused the hospital of criminal wrongdoing in operating and managing the hospital, including Medicare fraud.”

A District Court judge recently ordered ISP SuddenLink Communications Inc. to reveal — within 20 days of when the lawsuit was filed (that would be by July 9) — the name of the operator and the nine bloggers who have posted to the site.

In an article on the suit, ComputerWorld quotes a First Amendment lawyer as speculating that the hospital does not have much of a case.

I pinched all of this except the concern trolling.

On The Bright Side

Bomb Strikes Main Pipeline South of Baghdad It was reportedly like the 4th of July.

The Darkness Of The Witches

There has been and will continue to be a funk over America for the foreseeable future as the government slowly unwinds itself into the abject darkness of despotism that has been its’ core objective from the beginning.

The fact that the democratic forces in America have been marginalized by the corruption of its’ political leadership which compels it to silence in the face of overwhelming evidence of the current corruption speaks volumes for the state of the union.

Americans are now confronted with their worst of choices, a long standing revered tradition of Constitutional democracy, and a system of government under that Constitution that cannot function because it requires two things of public servants, honesty and courage.

We have reached a point where the government system of checks and balances does not function, not because the system itself has failed, but because the institutions that are tasked to provide those functions have become corrupted by the individuals we the people have elected to fill positions of importance, and consequently those positions that are appointed by those elected officials.

One is inclined to point to the people themselves for having bought into the corruption which is sold to them as if it were insurance or any other number of things we purchase because we want to possess the thing more than need the thing wanted and subsequently purchased. It is marketing to sell to consumers thing that they don’t need by using advertising, or propaganda, to convince them that they have a need they heretofore have not known themselves to be lacking.

We, as a people therefore, have no one to blame but ourselves, and not for being gullible, but for allowing ourselves to remain children under the guise of responsible adults in an endless adolescence where seriousness is a thing of discussion and not of activity or being. It is showing up at work every day because that is the work ethic, not of ones own convictions, but of the perception that that is what we were taught it was by our parents. It is vicarious ethics, living by the standards of the dead and the accomplishments of ones children, as facilitators of both past and future glories denied the present.

It is of a certainty that we shall die, but it is a choice as to whether we shall die free or slaves to our own illusions and pretensions, and subject to criminals that speak of law and order whilst spinning webs of anarchy and lawlessness both at home and abroad. Yet the hour is approaching, if it has not already passed, when that shall be the only choice that we might make, were we to be so honored as to be informed at all, of anything of import.

A government that does not trust its’ own people should not be trusted by those people to look out for their welfare and security of the people, since the people will never be the object of any protections commonly afforded by the people through the state. The state no longer serves the people, but serves to protect the state from the people, such as we currently are experiencing in America today.

The time is approaching when the people will have to re-exert their authority over the state whether through the political institutions of their forefathers, or through new institutions of their own makings, unless slavery to fear and the unknown has become the common wealth of the American people.

But let us at least dispel the illusion that the darkness of the witches has not yet settled on this fair land.

WSJ Goes FOX

So why buy the paper when the same stuff is on the TV nearly free?

Thursday, July 5, 2007

If Fred Thompson was a Mole, then what was Hillary?

In the first of a series of profiles, Alexander Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair chart the formative years of Hillary Clinton. Watch her as she zigzags from Nixon campaigner and vote-fraud investigator in 1960 to Goldwater Girl and President of Young Republicans at Wellesley to her internship for Gerald Ford and campaigner for Nelson Rockefeller. Witness her reaction to the student protests at Yale and the demonstrations at Grant Park during the Democratic Convention in 1968. Learn how she and Bill vowed to “remake” the Democratic Party–using the Nixon model HRC learned about as a member of the House impeachment staff. And much more! Plus: David Price on anthropologist Andre Gunder Frank, the FBI and the Bureaucratic Exile of a Critical Mind.

Who knows, maybe I should take up selling magazines.

You know I fully appreciate how people can change party affiliations, and have. I also appreciate that other people go by some eleventh commandment of Sain’t Reagan of Bonzo. I just don’t think Democrats can let Democrats off the hook like Republicans do with Republicans. After all not everyone can have the ethics of convenience, the religion of the sleeve, and the balls of Anne Coulter.

The Rublican’t Disarray

Updated:via TPM

3. Patrick Fitzgerald. Again, a darling of the Dems now for obvious reasons. But anyone who knows the guy’s history knows that while this registered independent may not lean ideologically right (in the way movement whacks might recognize) he certainly doesn’t lean to the left. It’s no accident that his appointments have come under Republicans.

You’ll want to read 1,2 and 4.

For those of you not paying attention, there was a Republican Prosecutor that tried a case before a Republican appointed judge, that found a Republican assistant to Dick, head of OVP, guilty of obstruction of justice.

For David Brooks, there is Mr. Corn. Or as I prefer, Mr. Brooks is chinga en la cavesa. It is so much more accurate than the familiar loco.

They Won’t

The Libby Affair” Washington Times

The president has now made it clear that he will probably pardon Libby before leaving office. That means (to me at least) that the commutation is merely a device to keep Libby from “singing” to the prosecutor and judge rather than go to prison. The felony conviction and fine would, of course, also disappear with the grant of a pardon.

This whole business is clearly a cynical manipulation of the criminal justice system for factional advantage. We will now see if the American people care about this. pl

First they have to be told, and they won’t be.

Of course it is somewhat gratifying when conservatives such as Col. Lang speak out on these issues. Maybe his friend will too. Nah.

Don’t Let It Hit You In The Ass

Almost Forgot.

Whine with that Whine and Cheese?

What is it with the Republican’t spin meisters and the Libby gig? First they whine because Scooter gets Marc Rich off,then they whine when those principles are seemingly violated by themselves getting Scooter off, and so the Democrats are hypocrits for pointing out the disparity.

No wonder conservatives want an “Independent” Party. Jumping on the Clinton wing of the Democratic Party is like jumping on the Rockefeller wing of the Republican Party, because they are the same bird.

The Surge and the Escalator in Chief

One of the things I don’t think we ever discuss is why we are fighting in Iraq anyway. Given that the original assertions have all been proven out to be, for lack of want for a better expression, a pack of lies, there is no articulated rationale for it to continue other than we broke it, we need to fix it.

I don’t think we can fault the Generals for playing politics with the surge, since they are under the gun to win wars, and over the last five decades the politicians have given them scenarios of warfare that cannot be won, and consequently the generals are constantly re-building the armed forces, after the political situation has degraded to the point where no amount of BS from the Executive can maintain the farce of national security interests.

Don’t be surprised then if the Generals wish to remain until hell freezes over since their first obligation is to the armed forces they command. Generals like to win too, and when we support the troops, (and I ain’t no fan of officers,) we need to support them all. That means not allowing ourselves to be BSed into wars that pander to our fears without appealing to our common sense. I won’t interject the presses position in all of this, as they already know, or ought to know that this is where they need to be on the ball.

Aside from that there is no reason that I am aware of for remaining in a foreign land without any national security purpose. Even terrorism becomes chain reactive as our armed forces kill innocent civilians, which happens in the best of splendid little wars that Presidents have all found to be historical career enhancing moves.

Would that we lived in the days when Generals wished to be Presidents, and not when Presidents wished to be Generals, but the current generation of political leadership are still the same people that I grew up with, and they wish to be rock stars of some sort, famous for some reason, and cool to boot. There is this pretentious strain in the baby boom that occupation does not remove, any more than years have and Presidents and Generals are not immune to it. They have and will continue to sacrifice their and other peoples children on the Alter of Ego, and call it any thing but sacrificing to Molech.

It is a tough enough task, in any religion, to get to understand God, but even more so when the religion is self, and the god is as well. Some more atheism would be good thing in this case.

No News Is Television News

I’ll try and get this out quick since there is yet another thunderstorm pushing in, and I want to get a least a couple of pictures to the local weather guy, and as I was up last night getting pictures of lightning and slept late today I am sort of out of kilter with my normal routine. That is a good thing sometimes.

As for the title, it riffs on the C-SPAN showing of the Watergate and Nixon show with Berstein and whats his name from the Post, oh yeah Woodward, (just kidding Bob,) including a professor of history and the Dean of Journalism at UT, and the editor of the Austin Statesman, all of which I may be wrong about since this is a blog, and I am a blogger, and I am in a hurry to do something with my camera which means that I am also not a blogger sometimes when I am busy being something else.

One of the most useful things I learned, or was reminded of, in today’s program however was that I am not alone in thinking about the low sink of television news, which isn’t or shouldn’t be a big surprise, but that every fact that I knew before the war in Iraq started was in fact reported by a journalist, and in that regard I think it was good to be reminded of the fact that some of the reporters and journalist out there are very good at their jobs. I think that needs to be said more often, and especially by me since I have, or had taken it upon my self to be an unrelenting critic of the MSM.

I also think that I should point out that I somewhat disagree with Bernstin about local television news programming, even though I think they probably could do more investigative reporting on the city halls, I still think that their quality is as good as it ever was, and given my previous years of not being a news hound, for all I know they have always focused on car crashes and the murder next door. On the other hand they may have just not come under my criticism because I just don’t do local or regional blogging and so they don’t factor in to the public perception of national events.

To be fair to you and myself in this little foray into shoot like hell and holler writing I also want to acknowledge the lack of separation I have in my own mind between the editorial and news divisions in the press, online or dead tree, which I really intend on working on, an effort in which I admit I do not know if I will achieve that lofty goal. But I’ll try, if say the NY Times will with their Judy Millers and Curveballs, low and in the dirt outside.

The one thing that does stick in my mind though, was having had the reporting that we had before the war how easy it was to conclude the President and his minions were lying about it all. That information that I had didn’t fall off the moon, and so kudos to those journalist that actually avoided the over patriotic sentiment of the many and did their jobs, reporting just the facts, man.

On the other hand I don’t really think I need to to take television news as seriously as I have since for the most part it isn’t what I have come to expect over the course of my life in “news,” and so there isn’t much point to it all, other than to waste my time and efforts sorting through it and critiquing it as if it were.

I am also going to make a better effort to read the journalism that is out there, meaning on the net since that is where out there is now, and distinguish between news and opinion. So I’ll be reading the Post and Times etc, along with some of my favorite electronic reporters and blogs. I think it will make this a better blog, and lord knows I can improve the blog but not stop the slide of television news into palabram. So I’m on a mission to what I can about what I can, and I will leave the rest of the world to sort through the fluff and pomposity of the national, cable television news. Of course I wouldn’t want the national media to think that some of them don’t have this blanket rejection of the medium leaving their feet sticking out. I do think there are some good television journalists, but I would rather praise them when they make a splash in the swamp, than note how the swamp stinks most of the time.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Earth to Duncan Hunter

The troops have absolutely nothing to do with America being in Iraq, they are not a political football, ( except to you and the pResident,) and no one is impugning their devotion to duty, and in fact some have been too devoted and convicted of war crimes, but fortunately they were enlisted personnel since officers are above the law and it would have looked bad convicting one of them.

On the other hand their is nothing in the Constitution about defending other nations people from their own tyrants, and war criminals. If that were the case we would have to invade America. We may deplore Sadass gassing the Kurds and well we should, but that doesn’t make might right for us if that is what was wrong there. I am sure that eventually the Iraqis would have put another three stages on they’re Scuds and a guidance system that would have been reasonably more accurate than your statements, but those are both things of the future. My money is on the Iraqis being first though.

Only Except In America

Iran has joined Al Jazeera in starting an international English media outlet that will not be broadcast in America, since freedom of speech is a privilege and not a right. Sorry folks, if we want to know what you’re thinking will tell you what it is.

How are these people ever going to accept democracy going about it like this? I mean what’s next, voting in their own national elections and then what? Hezbollah, that’s what! Once they win an election the next thing they’ll want to do is govern, and then govern without input from DC. Temerity I tell ya! Temerity!

Of course they might have competed with the heavy weights of jewlry and Glenn Beck, but…

Oh to be the President

to have a hollow tale
to dance above the carnage
of the bombs bursting fire sale.

I could live on the destruction
of lives, ideas and dreams
wash it down with wishing whiskey
and four score and seven ice creams.

The world would all painted blue
and I could call it red
because it never matters in DC
we make a living making it dead.

Sand down the beaches boys
we’re all going out to see
if the water can be turned to blood
and still be blue on the tee vee.

I bet I can pardon even me
I bet I will, you’ll see
I cannot be convicted boys,
convictions aren’t for me.

Almost always has good point

Who is EZSmirkzz- and why is he saying those mean things about you?

Stick Around, Who Knows

One of the most critical problems facing our nation at the moment, IMHO, is the total lack of confidence in the ability of the government to do simple things like, uh, govern, and so they use the press to manipulate the public to an understanding of events that do not comport with the facts on the ground.

I read where, (sorry I read a lot and don’t always remember where it was, hence the links usually,) the press elite also like to be considered elite by the wealthy elite who are ruining the country so they act and broadcast in such a way as to be so considered by their betters, which I think is why they are in a cross fire between the people and the governmental authorities that are ruining the nation. It’s hell getting you flags crossed up.

Of course we bloggo’s are supposed to sharp shooting snipers and make fine distinctions between those who prevaricate on purpose and those who prevaricate a little on purpose, and of course those who are actually doing journalism and are hard to find and read in the MSM or see and listen to on the TV and radio anymore. Apparently advocacy has become a job description of journalism, whether overtly on a particular issue, or more apropos a specific event, or more covertly from a conservative slant, which is not the individuals fault for being so, anymore than it is their fault that their bosses don’t hire others just like them with a liberal bent.

But it is important to acknowledge the reality of the situation in broadcasting that has always been the case in print, just as one would hope our government and they would finally conclude about Iraq, like sentient beings world wide who have no desire to be rubbing shoulders with the “elite.” Not desiring access has many benefits, one of which is an ability to be honest in thinking, and hence in speaking and perhaps in activity, which is verbotten to the elite whom are always trying to impress other people with their elitism and impressiveness.

Eventually these folks cross all the lines because they do not think that these things apply to them as well as to the lesser folk of the shire, and then a culture and a country start falling apart as the leaders and elite lead and enlighten the lesser folk of the shire in how not to behave.

But to lay it all off on just the political and journalistic elites would be to miss the tragedy of the economic and religious elites as well, who are cut from the same better cloth of bitter results.

Flagpie Slats July 1-3, 2007

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

I Love My Country

It’s the Government I can’t stand. Still wonder why the terrorist attack us?

If the anger we are all supposedly feeling inside at these current events, or at Clinton’s behavior were really true then the question of why Al Whoda attacks us would be a moot point wouldn’t it? After all they are foreigners, have no attachment to the system of government, the economic benefits of the system, nor are they ultimately responsible for the behavior of the commercial and political interests of this country, so of course it is their fault. Stupid Foreigners.

Viper Squads Deployed

The US Government has announced that eight cities in America will be protected and which ones they will be. All others presumably are open for attacks and business as usual.

Same Reason They…

X-Rated

Ultimately, people should just stop spending so much time worrying about what other people are doing in their marriages. I don’t really understand why people feel they have the right to weigh in on whether or not I should have children. It’s especially creepy when conservatives go from being anti-premarital sex to being anti-sex period.

Same Reason they twitter about someone eating their own mucus but not cunnilingus, or Scooter getting Marc Rich a Presidential pardon and then getting one himself, or humint being outsourced without viable options for solution. People like to bitch.

Principles?! We Don’t Need No Stinking Principles!

One of the most pertinent arguments that the right made during the Clinton years, and his avoiding of perjury charges, was the principle of the being equal before the law. Obviously they no longer feel that way.

I think it was a pretty smooth maneuver however, and so obviously the President didn’t think this up.

One of the things I think we need to remember in America is that laws are convenient things for those with power, and those laws may and will be violated at will so long as some larger purpose can be fathomed out of the deed.

There is a purpose for pointing this out, since most of us, and most of you especially, break any number of laws all the time as a matter of convenience so that for the President and his staff to do so should not be that shocking at all.

The only real question that needs to be asked is are there more laws than lawbreakers in America? That may be a closer race than we wish to consider.

Monday, July 2, 2007

And Then It Was Over

Sunday, July 1, 2007

None of My Business, But…

It would seem to me that there ought to be a lot, and I mean a lot, more advertising by political candidates on the blogs.

I don’t think it is a matter of currying favor since that isn’t how the blogs on the leftern frontier work, so if you want suck asses go to the conservative blogs and be a conservative, but it is a matter of common wealth and weal.

It also isn’t a matter of me knowing how the other blogs feel, or how they think about all of this either, since as far as I know I’ve emailed TPM maybe twice and Atrios once, and that’s it. Neither of them had anything to do with politics, and only once did I get a reply. So I don’t have a dog in this hunt. I just know they and the others run on advertising and donations, like any other business.

However it is abundantly clear how helpful the blogs have been to the Democratic Party, and to the Democratic cause, and unlike our political office holding bretheren, non of the bloggers are sucking on the public teat.

How’s about unassing some money to the grass roots, Lady and Gentlemen?

Of Course There Was Yesterday…

I could regale you with how dark the clouds were befor the bolt, but that would be a dull picture indeed.

Chicken One Day, Feathers the Next

Oh well, no lightning shots today I suppose.

I was listening to Henry Kissinger, very little of course, while being interviewed on terrorism in our time, and one of the most telling things he said was along the lines of how we needed to proceed to get the government we prefer in Iraq, I suppose, but as I said I didn’t listen to him to closely.

But the salient point is that we some how need to proceed in some diplomatic or military course that would install or produce the government we prefer, which I think is the source of our problem to begin with, trying to procure governments that we prefer. Forget the people who are being governed, it’s all about America’s preferences.

I suppose it may be natural for some people to think that way, I can hear that out here in Podunk about my own personal life, if I would do things differently then I would be living a life style that others would prefer more than the current one.

Forget that I am happy or content with what I’ve got and what I am doing, it is the other people that are upset or miffed by it all and so I should change something about it all for them. Just like they are going to do for me I suppose, someday, except like everyone else, they are right and everyone else is screwed up.

Basically it is the same thing gone international, and if everyone would be a good American then America would be a better America too, and quit minding other peoples business.

I think some of this all springs from Americans proclivity to assign a worth to things that has nothing to do with the value of that thing. Worth, however, is subjective.

I think we would be better off to value peaceful neighbors and trading partners, and not try and assign a worth to their government and economic systems. Sure I think everyone would be better off if they did things like we do, except we have the most unpopular President, Congress and Supreme Court in our history. If we cannot improve our own self then how will we improve things for others?

Even if we sent them our President, Congress and Supreme Court we would still be unhappy with their government, maybe more so than we are now, so perhaps we should value our own government and institutions and lay off the assigning of a worth to it. Even a worthless govenment such as we now have has a priceless value to it, and since we cannot assign a constant worth to it we should hold it in esteem for it’s value. Since it is helpful to be an American to understand what I just said, perhaps we should not expect non-Americans to do so. If we were to do that then maybe others would assign a value and worth to that that we could understand as well.

Give ’em A Break

I had thought about Teeing off on Larry King, when he was asking Paul about George Harrison’s last days, and Paul actual quit being “on,” and was just being a human being explaining what his friend, another human being was going through facing his immenent death, when Larry cut away to another sound clip. It is a rare occassion when one of the fabs isn’t “on” whenever the public catches them speaking, so I thought we had lost one of those couple in a lifetime moments with Paul. But you know Larry is a Beatles maniac with a time schedule to boot. But it was a good reminder that behind the Beatles are four human beings, without all four there are no Beatles, and it would be nice to know the human beings, but given that isn’t going to happen it was pretty cool knowing the Beatles. If nothing else Larry gave me that, and so why go off on him for the other?

I think the some of the same thinking could be said for the coverage of the Glascow car fire, and London near misses, from the regulatr CNN crew, which I was grousing about until the last of the progeny reminded me that most people catch CNN for an hour at most, and that I am one of the few people that he knows that uses it for background noise. Thoughts well spoken and needed hearing.

In that regard, I think we ought to remind ourselves that CNN, (and who knows FOX too, (I don’t get FOX anymore,)) has paid more than one person to follow this beat since 911 and when any event occurs there is a tendency to want to get these folks out front. I don’t know what they pay these people in salary, but most people aren’t aware of the fact that almost and equal amount is also part of the whole payroll package of benefits and taxes paid by employers for each employee, and so CNN is going to get there pound of flesh out of there people.

I would expound on this point, but the lightning is starting to fly, and I got pictures to take.

Just be cool, and try not to shoot anyone in the face.