Friday, July 13, 2007

Lil' Bush

If you haven't caught an episode or two of this hilarious new show on Comedy Central, what the hell are you waiting for?

Don't miss the post show press conference.

Bush's Distortions, Delusions and Distractions

BUSH: “The same folks that are bombing innocent people in Iraq,” he said, “were the ones who attacked us in America on September the 11th, and that’s why what happens in Iraq matters to the security here at home.”

Here's my assessment on that quote: BULLSHIT.

The Al-Qaeda fear card is coming up more and more frequently as Bush gets further away from reality and the administration sits in their bunker trying to figure out how to salvage what little left there is to their pathetic term in office. The more they realize that the GOP will probably get a "whoopin'" again in 2008, the more they use fear and the threat of terror to try to justify their debacle in Iraq.

As Bob Woodward reports, even CIA Director Michael V. Hayden catalogued what he saw as the main sources of violence [for the Iraq Study Group] in this order: the insurgency, sectarian strife, criminality, general anarchy and, lastly, al-Qaeda. Though Hayden had listed al-Qaeda as the fifth most pressing threat in Iraq, Bush regularly lists al-Qaeda first.

Even "general anarchy" is ahead of al-Qaeda in his assessment of the situation. But the more trouble the administration gets into, the more they shout "al-Qaeda". Just this week, Harriet Meirs, on advice from the White House, disregarded a subpoena from the Senate Judiciary Committee and decided not to show up. ...AL-QAEDA!!!

"I can't fathom a private citizen getting a subpoena to come before this body and not showing up," said Rep. Stephen I. Cohen, a Tennessee Democrat. "What we've got here is an empty chair. I mean, that is as contemptuous as anybody can be of the government, of the process, of the country."

But will she be charged with contempt of Congress and arrested like any other "private citizen"? I'm guessing the answer is a big, fat NO. ... AL-QAEDA!!!

At least Sara M. Taylor, the former White House Political Director showed up in person to spit in the face of the committee: "I have a very clear letter from Mr. Fielding," Taylor began at 10:40 a.m., pointing to the letter from White House Counsel Fred Fielding that has "directed" Taylor not to testify about internal deliberations and external communications while she worked in the West Wing.

She finally did start answering some questions after she was reminded by Chairman Senator Leahy what sort of questions she could and couldn't answer. And her answers proved that either she is one of the "loyal Bushies" that Kyle Sampson categorized, or that her mind is just as full of holes as Alberto Gonzales'.

Speaking of Gonzales, Dahlia Lithwick from reports, "In April 2005, Gonzales testified before the Senate that "there has not been one verified case of civil liberties abuse" as a consequence of expanded FBI powers under the Patriot Act. We now learn that at the time, he was in possession of at least six FBI reports detailing unlawful surveillance, searches, and improper use of national security letters. It's tempting to write off Gonzales' failure to admit to these numerous abuses as yet another punch line. "Ooopsy. Lied again." Heh heh. Shrug. But at least grant that Gonzales' buffoonery serves a larger Bush administration purpose. His dereliction of duty takes our minds off the real story: the extent of the damage he and Bush have done to the Justice Department in a few short years.

...It's difficult to ascertain the precise moment in the Bush administration in which confessing not to have been doing one's job at all became the best defense against the claim that one did one's job badly. But given the choice between admitting to perjury or incompetence, you can bet that Gonzales will easily, indeed gleefully, cop to the latter."

It just doesn't stop... AL-QAEDA!!!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

The Panic Ensues

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff made comments regarding our national security against terror threats and although he had no evidence to raise threat levels, he chose to make these remarks on a "gut feeling". Yes, that's right. A "gut feeling".

"I believe we are entering a period this summer of increased risk. Summertime seems to be appealing to them," he said of al-Qaeda. "We do worry that they are rebuilding their activities." Why Michael? Is it the heat? Does summer remind them of home and therefore they feel more comfortable? What an idiot.

I have a gut geeling that Michael Chertoff is a moron. Wait, that's not a good comparison because I've probably gathered more evidence that he is a moron than he has gathered on terror threats.

House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson is questioning Michael Chertoff's "gut feeling"... Thompson has written to the secretary asking him to explain his feeling. The Mississippi Democrat asked what color code is associated with a "gut feeling" about the terror threat and what cities should be working their police on double shifts as a result.

As far as the Crypt Keeper worrying about Al-Qaeda rebuilding their activities, that's a legit concern. But the problem is that he shouldn't worry about the "rebuilding" phase because according to a U.S. intelligence report, Al-Qaeda is at its greatest strength since it was expelled from Afghanistan after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. The intelligence assessment is titled "Al-Qaeda Better Positioned to Strike the West." Another home run for the Bush Administration... I wonder what team they're playing for.

As for Press Secretary Tony Snow, a little thing like terminal cancer isn't stopping him from giving his standard, smart-aleck answers to the Washington Press Corps. When asked of Chertoff's gut feeling, Snow said, "I don't want to try to get into gastrointestinal descriptions." Oh, ho-ho, ho, Tony! You're such a card.

But it looks like the fear mongering has already started to work. A flight from Los Angeles to London was diverted to New York early Thursday because of what officials said may have been unfounded fears of a security breach. The fears were unfounded because the passenger in question was actually an employee traveling in a private capacity. Chertoff said he had gotten information from airline representatives. "It may very well turn out that this is nothing more than a misunderstanding with an employee."

Carrying 230 passengers, the flight landed at JFK at about 3:30 a.m... The plane was searched and nothing suspicious was found, according to American Airlines spokeswoman Sonja Whitemon. The passengers onboard had to be re-screened and put on new planes because [the] original was canceled due to flight crew time regulations. American Airlines said the passengers will start boarding alternate flights starting at 8:30 a.m.

Heckuva job, Crypt Keeper. Why does everything these people touch turn to shit?
If you were in an Al-Qaeda cell, wouldn't you just be driving by now?

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Thompson - Swing And A Miss!

A couple of days ago, I wrote about a Los Angeles Times article accusing Fred Thompson of lobbying for a pro choice organization. One commenter suggested I disregard the LA Times piece until they produce billing records as proof. Fair enough.

So why is it that when Sean Hannity asked Thompson of the "attack" on his character, Thompson doesn't give him a direct yes or no answer? Thompson got a softball question from Hannity and whiffed at it, but the crowd roared regardless.

HANNITY: "They have attacked you, they have attacked your family, and now, they come out in the Los Angeles Times with a piece that says you lobbied for abortion rights. You say that's absolutely not true."

THOMPSON: "No... You need to separate a lawyer who is advocating a position from the position itself. They will probably come at me, in 35 years of law practice, with some people, I represented criminal defendants. I was a prosecutor. I had a general law practice. So that in and of itself doesn't mean anything anyway... I'm not gonna get down in the weeds with everything they dredge up over the next six months." Then cheers from the ignorant audience.

Sounds like a little back-peddling to me. Why not just say, "No. Absolutely not. I have never been pro-abortion." As Thoman B. Edsall reports, in the July 7 LAT story, Thompson spokesman Mark Corallo firmly rejected charges that Thompson had lobbied in support of the pro-choice group. "Fred Thompson did not lobby for this group, period," he said.

In response to a Huffington Post inquiry today [July 11] however, Corallo was more equivocal: "He said he has no recollection of doing any work and does not recall lobbying anyone on it."

From "No, period" to "I can't recall" in just four days.

"You need to separate a lawyer who is advocating a position from the position itself."
To my ears, this sounds like, "Hey, they hired me to do a job. Why should I turn it down? If I can represent criminal defendants, why not this? It doesn't mean anything anyway."

I wonder what else Mr. Thompson won't be able to recall as all this progresses. And to my commenter "Sturm", any input? What do you think the reason is that he shrugged it off instead of vehemently denying it?

Former Surgeon General Kept On A Leash

A quote from former surgeon general Dr. Richard Carmona, on the Bush administration's efforts to politicize his office and "muzzle" him on key issues like embryonic stem cells and abstinence only programs. Carmona served as Surgeon General from 2002-2006.

"Anything that doesn't fit into the political appointees' ideological, theological or political agenda is ignored, marginalized or simply buried... The problem with this approach is that in public health, as in a democracy, there is nothing worse than ignoring science, or marginalizing the voice of science for reasons driven by changing political winds. The job of surgeon general is to be the doctor of the nation, not the doctor of a political party."

Regarding stem cell research, Carmona said he was prevented from talking publicly even about the science underpinning the research to enable the U.S. public to have a better understanding of a complicated issue. He said most of the public debate over the matter has been driven by political, ideological or theological motivations.

"I was blocked at every turn. I was told the decision had already been made -- stand down, don't talk about it."

Do we really expect anything different? It's just another day in the bizarro world of the Bush White House.

Read the entire story here.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Michael Moore Rips Wolf Blitzer a New One

Michael Moore was interviewed by Wolf Blitzer on The Situation Room after a three year absence to discuss his new movie, SICKO. Before being interviewed, Wolf presented a two minute "journalism" piece by Dr. Sanjay Gupta on the exaggerations in Moore's movie. There was only one problem: there are no exaggerations.
You'll see Moore standing by for his interview with a confused look on his face as Wolf introduces their crack journalism as "a reality check from our CNN chief medical correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta", as they try to discredit the facts and figures Moore uses in his film.

Unfortunately for Wolf, Moore was having none of it and proceeds to batter Wolf to a pulp, including wondering why Wolf isn't apologizing for trying to discredit FAHRENHEIT 9/11 three years earlier "because it turns out everything I said in Fahrenheit was true, everything that's come to happen... I took you in that film to Walter Reed hospital and it took three years before you or anyone else in the mainstream media would go to Walter Reed hospital to see what was happening to our troops... You're the ones who are fudging the facts. You fudge the facts to the American people now for I don't know how long - about this issue (health care), about the war and I'm just curious: When are you going to just stand there and apologize to the American people for not bringing the truth to them that isn't sponsored by some major corporation?... I will sit here for as long as it takes if you can do that for me!"

Of course in the bumper to Lou Dobbs, we see how idiotic Dobbs looks in trying to make a joke out of the whole thing and compares Moore to Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. Blitzer was too shell-shocked from Michael Moore's thrashing and only responded with a whimper of a chuckle.

A must watch video!

UPDATE: Here's Moore and Blitzer on Day Two, the promised taped interview continuing from the day before.