Publius Archive

'Now With Attenuated Live Thought Viruses'

WARNING:

INFORMATION FOR PHILOSOPHICAL USE ONLY!

Always use inflammatory information in a well

ventilated area and wear protective headgear

when conducting dangerous thought-experiments.

Information not good after curfew in

Sectors 'R' or 'M.'

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Bush's Plan for the Gulf Coast Dispossesed

There's a job,  3 meals a day,  and housing waiting for you-  In Iraq!  

Uncle Sam Wants YOU!

----

I hate to disturb your vacation...

Why isn't George Bush in Louisiana right this minute? 

Monday, August 29, 2005

Consumer

I was watching last Friday's Bill Maher show.  They were talking about obesity among American consumers...

What is it about the term "American Consumer"  that would cause confusion regarding obesity in this country?

Speaking as an obese American Consumer,  I can state uneuquivically that Rhese's Peanut Butter Cups are delicious.  I mean,  the job of a consumer is to consume,  right?   So what's the question?

Pass the Hershey's,  will ya?

--

Bush's Reported Outbursts: Upsetting Concerned Aides?

Captol Hill Blue has been making similar reports for some time now.  I'd be a bit more. um...  convinced if the same info was leaking from elsewhere.  Similar behaviors have been reported regarding the CinC from the days before  he was a politician in which he drunkenly  challenged his father  mano a mano.

While I'd never call it diagnostic,  but call me an observer of human nature,  I believe Mr Thompson.  I suspect he's calling it true...

From Capitol Hill Blue

Bush Leagues
Bush's Obscene Tirades Rattle White House Aides
By DOUG THOMPSON
Aug 25, 2005, 06:19

While President George W. Bush travels around the country in a last-ditch effort to sell his Iraq war, White House aides scramble frantically behind the scenes to hide the dark mood of an increasingly angry leader who unleashes obscenity-filled outbursts at anyone who dares disagree with him....

More...

Sunday, August 28, 2005

John Bolton's Proposed UN "Reforms"

Mr Bolton's Proposed changes (on behalf of the Bush Administration) to the nearly completed UN reform document are very revealing. The following are a couple of excerpts from the document with administration-proposed deletions, A fuller list with other commentary can be found on The Huffington Post at
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/arianna-huffington/leaked-document-exposes-b_b_6287.html


Provide, as a priority, assistance for HIV/AIDS prevention, care and treatment in African countries on a grant basis, and encourage pharmaceutical companies to make anti-retroviral drugs affordable and accessible in Africa and ensure increased support for bilateral and multilateral assistance to combat malaria, tuberculosis and other infectious diseases in Africa. (p.14)


...taking into account the Rio principles, inter alia the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities. We recognize that climate change is a serious and long-term challenge that has the potential to affect every part of the world.…

[…]


We agree recognize that current developments and circumstances require that we build consensus on major threats and challenges. We commit to translate that consensus into concrete action, including addressing the root causes of those threats and challenges. (p.2)



With millions in Sub-Saharan Africa curretnly dying of HIV and other treatable diseases, and with a Cat 5 Hurricane barrelling down on New Orleans, I can only imagine that Mr Bolton is acting in the intrests of very large corporations and not in the interests of the people of the world.

Mind you, I'm all for a healthy business climate, but this ain't it. Like all institutions, there must be checks and balances, and it seems to me we are facing global corporate tyranny in the name of reform. Make no mistake, it's a war; it's being waged on us, and we are aquiescing on their word that it's a medicine we need for our own good.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Coincidence?

Fri Aug 26th, 2005 at 03:49:08 EDT

Know how conservatives love to use those maps showing areas that voted Republicans, and those that voted Democrats?

What would they say about this map?

That's for US fatalities in Iraq as of August 1, 2005.

Update: Thanks to popular demand, the 2004 map by county:

(Click on both maps to enlarge.)

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Wikinews: Rave Broken Up By Swat Team in Utah

http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Dance_party_broken_up_by_police_in_Utah%2C_USA

...A first hand account from a DJ booked to play at the party stated that while police were arresting a man accused of possession, the suspect was beaten to the ground and continually "kicked in the ribs" by four armed "soldiers" dressed in camouflage. According to the account, nobody resisted the policemen, and was orderly but tear gas was thrown at the partiers as they attempted to leave as instructed. The DJ also states that police were attempting to confiscate video equipment, but an amateur video has still surfaced on the internet (see sources below). Based on the low resolution, automatic lighting adjustment, and low audio quality, the video appears to have been taken with an amateur device....

Amateur video (FLASH MOV format)

More...

Monday, August 22, 2005

Who Said This?

"The deterioration of Iraq serves as an unmistakable reminder of the flawed manner in which we carried out this mission. A global democracy works only when countries trust one another. America's insistence on burrowing into Iraq without substantial proof that they possessed weapons of mass destruction frayed that trust, and will inevitably sew problems into our foreign relations missions for decades to come. It also served as a touchtone, uniting our enemies. The longer we stay, the more people will come from all over the world to fight us—not to fight for Iraq, but to fight against the United States. "

 
 
Do you suppose the check bounced?
 
--

Sunday, August 21, 2005

The Last Six Feet Under

If you've ever watched Six Feet Under,  and even if you haven't: The series finale is highly satisfying.  It's basically the series on ecstacy.

You know, amazingly-  in this very country they are doing human studies using MDMA (ecstacy) on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder .  I suspect the results will be positive.

Where was I? 

The final episode comes on again Monday night,  22 August  at 10 PM on HBO.  It'll be out on rental soon enough.

--

Regarding Paranoia and Spliting in American Politics

I posted this on Daily Kos in response to another article.  I link you to it following the first portion,  as Kos' software is better to handle longer posts.  I go as INFOHAZARD there,  'cause Publius is taken.

--------------------------------

Regarding Paranoia and Spliting in American Politics 

Sun Aug 21st, 2005 at 15:01:25 EDT

Armando posed an excellent and subtle analysis of American politics based on points made by Eco and Hofsteadter.  http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2005/8/20/232228/849

He used the term "Paranoid" to describe the processes we are seeing going on in the halls of power.

At the risk of being more concrete than Armando ever intended,  I think that there is another psychological concept that's extremely germaine to the topic.  It's that of a relative of the Paranoid Personality,  the Borderline Personality.  The following is largely taken from a comment I made on the Armando piece.

The Borderline Personality

http://www.bpdcentral.com/resources/basics/main.shtml

The Hallmark of the Borderline it the tendency towards emotional 'all-or-nothing' stances.  A given person will be seen as all good or all bad, and which one it is today is subject to capricious change.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Former aide: Powell WMD speech 'lowest point in my life'

CNN:

Programming Note: " 'Dead Wrong' -- Inside an Intelligence Meltdown" airs Sunday at 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. ET on CNN. vert.powell.20030205.jpg

Former Secretary of State Colin Powell presents the case that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction in 2003.

(CNN) -- A former top aide to Colin Powell says his involvement in the former secretary of state's presentation to the United Nations on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction was "the lowest point" in his life.

"...Wilkerson is one of several insiders interviewed for the CNN Presents documentary "Dead Wrong -- Inside an Intelligence Meltdown." The program, which airs Sunday at 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. ET, pieces together the events leading up to the mistaken WMD intelligence that was presented to the public. A presidential commission that investigated the pre-war WMD intelligence found much of it to be "dead wrong...."

"...After searching Iraq for several months across the summer of 2003, Kay began e-mailing Tenet to tell him the WMD evidence was falling apart. At one point, Wilkerson says, Tenet called Powell to tell him the claims about mobile bioweapons labs were apparently not true.

"George actually did call the Secretary, and said, 'I'm really sorry to have to tell you. We don't believe there were any mobile labs for making biological weapons,'" Wilkerson says in the documentary. "This was the third or fourth telephone call. And I think it's fair to say the Secretary and Mr. Tenet, at that point, ceased being close. I mean, you can be sincere and you can be honest and you can believe what you're telling the Secretary. But three or four times on substantive issues like that? It's difficult to maintain any warm feelings."

More...


Statement of Senator Margaret Chase Smith June 1, 1950

Via Metafilter

"Mr. President:

I would like to speak briefly and simply about a serious national condition. It is a national feeling of fear and frustration that could result in national suicide and the end of everything that we Americans hold dear. It is a condition that comes from the lack of effective leadership in either the Legislative Branch or the Executive Branch of our Government.

That leadership is so lacking that serious and responsible proposals are being made that national advisory commissions be appointed to provide such critically needed leadership.

I speak as briefly as possible because too much harm has already been done with irresponsible words of bitterness and selfish political opportunism. I speak as simply as possible because the issue is too great to be obscured by eloquence. I speak simply and briefly in the hope that my words will be taken to heart.

I speak as a Republican, I speak as a woman. I speak as a United States Senator. I speak as an American.

The United States Senate has long enjoyed worldwide respect as the greatest deliberative body in the world. But recently that deliberative character has too often been debased to the level of a forum of hate and character assassination sheltered by the shield of congressional immunity.

It is ironical that we Senators can in debate in the Senate directly or indirectly, by any form of words impute to any American, who is not a Senator, any conduct or motive unworthy or unbecoming an American -- and without that non-Senator American having any legal redress against us -- yet if we say the same thing in the Senate about our colleagues we can be stopped on the grounds of being out of order.

It is strange that we can verbally attack anyone else without restraint and with full protection and yet we hold ourselves above the same type of criticism here on the Senate Floor. Surely the United States Senate is big enough to take self-criticism and self-appraisal. Surely we should be able to take the same kind of character attacks that we dish out to outsiders.

I think that it is high time for the United States Senate and its members to do some soul searching -- for us to weigh our consciences -- on the manner in which we are performing our duty to the people of America -- on the manner in which we are using or abusing our individual powers and privileges.

I think that it is high time that we remembered that we have sworn to uphold and defend the Constitution. I think that it is high time that we remembered; that the Constitution, as amended, speaks not only of the freedom of speech but also of trial by jury instead of trial by accusation.

Whether it be a criminal prosecution in court or a character prosecution in the Senate, there is little practical distinction when the life of a person has been ruined.

Those of us who shout the loudest about Americanism in making character assassinations are all to frequently those who, by our own words and acts, ignore some of the basic principles of Americanism --

The right to criticize;

The right to hold unpopular beliefs;

The right to protest;

The right of independent thought.

The exercise of these rights should not cost one single American citizen his reputation or his right to a livelihood nor should he be in danger of losing his reputation or livelihood merely because he happens to know some one who holds unpopular beliefs. Who of us doesn't? Otherwise none of us could call our souls our own. Otherwise thought control would have set in.

The American people are sick and tired of being afraid to speak their minds lest they be politically smeared as "Communists" or "Fascists" by their opponents. Freedom of speech is not what it used to be in America. It has been so abused by some that it is not exercised by others. The American people are sick and tired of seeing innocent people smeared and guilty people whitewashed. But there have been enough proved cases to cause nationwide distrust and strong suspicion that there may be something to the unproved, sensational accusations.

As a Republican, I say to my colleagues on this side of the aisle that the Republican Party faces a challenge today that is not unlike the challenge that it faced back in Lincoln's day. The Republican Party so successfully met that challenge that it emerged from the Civil War as the champion of a united nation -- in addition to being a Party that unrelentingly fought loose spending and loose programs.

Today our country is being psychologically divided by the confusion and the suspicions that are bred in the United States Senate to spread like cancerous tentacles of "know nothing, suspect everything" attitudes. Today we have a Democratic Administration that has developed a mania for loose spending and loose programs. History is repeating itself -- and the Republican Party again has the opportunity to emerge as the champion of unity and prudence.

The record of the present Democratic Administration has provided us with sufficient campaign issues without the necessity of resorting to political smears. America is rapidly losing its position as leader of the world simply because the Democratic Administration has pitifully failed to provide effective leadership.

The Democratic Administration has completely confused the American people by its daily contradictory grave warnings and optimistic assurances -- that show the people that our Democratic Administration has no idea of where it is going.

The Democratic Administration has greatly lost the confidence of the American people by its complacency to the threat of communism here at home and the leak of vital secrets to Russia through key officials of the Democratic Administration. There are enough proved cases to make this point without diluting our criticism with unproved charges.

Surely these are sufficient reasons to make it clear to the American people that it is time for a change and that a Republican victory is necessary to the security of this country. Surely it is clear that this nation will continue to suffer as long as it is governed by the present ineffective Democratic Administration.

Yet to displace it with a Republican regime embracing a philosophy that lacks political integrity or intellectual honesty would prove equally disastrous to this nation. The nation sorely needs a Republican victory. But I don't want to see the Republican Party ride to political victory on the Four Horsemen of Calumny -- Fear, Ignorance, Bigotry and Smear.

I doubt if the Republican Party could -- simply because I don't believe the American people will uphold any political party that puts political exploitation above national interest. Surely we Republicans aren't that desperate for victory.

I don't want to see the Republican Party win that way. While it might be a fleeting victory for the Republican Party, it would be a more lasting defeat for the American people. Surely it would ultimately be suicide for the Republican Party and the two-party system that has protected our American liberties from the dictatorship of a one party system.

As members of the Minority Party, we do not have the primary authority to formulate the policy of our Government. But we do have the responsibility of rendering constructive criticism, of clarifying issues, of allaying fears by acting as responsible citizens.

As a woman, I wonder how the mothers, wives, sisters and daughters feel about the way in which members of their families have been politically mangled in Senate debate -- and I use the word 'debate' advisedly.

As a United States Senator, I am not proud of the way in which the Senate has been made a publicity platform for irresponsible sensationalism. I am not proud of the reckless abandon in which unproved charges have been hurled from this side of the aisle. I am not proud of the obviously staged, undignified countercharges that have been attempted in retaliation from the other side of the aisle.

I don't like the way the Senate has been made a rendezvous for vilification, for selfish political gain at the sacrifice of individual reputations and national unity. I am not proud of the way we smear outsiders from the Floor of the Senate and hide behind the cloak of congressional immunity and still place ourselves beyond criticism on the Floor of the Senate.

As an American, I am shocked at the way Republicans and Democrats alike are playing directly into the Communist design of "confuse, divide and conquer." As an American, I don't want a Democratic Administration "white wash" or "cover up" any more than I want a Republican smear or witch hunt.

As an American, I condemn a Republican "Fascist" just as much as I condemn a Democrat "Communist." I condemn a Democrat "fascist" just as much as I condemn a Republican "Communist." They are equally dangerous to you and me and to our country. As an American, I want to see our nation recapture the strength and unity it once had when we fought the enemy instead of ourselves.

It is with these thoughts I have drafted what I call a "Declaration of Conscience." I am gratified that Senator Tobey, Senator Aiken, Senator Morse, Senator Ives, Senator Thye and Senator Hendrickson, have concurred in that declaration and have authorized me to announce their concurrence."

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

The Times, They are A'Changing

That last post regarding the attack on Cindy Sheehan linked (not exactly on purpose, but for the sake of completeness) to a T-Shirt Site that revels in the current political sentiment. Here is an example of their products:



This really upsets me. I've been to Guantanamo Bay. In 1994 I was deployed to GTMO. It's the one place on that lush island that resembles a desert. Lots of cacti and the buzzards line up on power lines like a bunch of sparrows.

The Iguanas at Gitmo are awesome. The banana rats are like really big regular rats on lots of valium. They amble up and beg for popcorn when you're watching a movie at one of the outdoor theaters.

Locals told me that on the rest of the island, they have killed the banana rats all off for food. Guantanamo is the last place they thrive.

Booze was incredibly cheap, and believe me, That was a good thing. I mean, here was absolutely nothing to do around there but drink. on the other hand, it was cruel irony that you couldn't get a good cigar there.

There's a big plaque next to the water, over by the desalinization plant that basically reads:

"In 1493, on his second voyage, Christopher Columbus sailed into this bay looking for gold. He named it 'Grand Bay." Not finding anything at all, he left the next day."

OK, maybe that's not quite right, but it's close.

We were there to provide medical care to the Cuban Balseros, "Rafters" who had fled Castro to become Americans. They were temporarily sent back to GTMO. They are almost all Americans now. I met some amazing, smart and creative people who wanted what we have to offer.

Camp X-Ray? It seems Castro cleared out all his prisons and put them on rafts when all the others went. Camp X-Ray was for those hardened criminals. The main malady that Camp X-ray detainees had was called "Waffle-Butt." This occurred when they managed to fornicate across the chain-link fence that separated the inmates.

When I was there, I picked up a T-Shirt at the gift-shop (right next to the McDonald's). This is it:
















I'll take my T-Shirt any day. I'm proud of what I did there. We were the light of the world. Now GTMO is a symbol of abuse and torture.


--

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

In Case You Hadn't Noticed

This is from Stan Aluisi in Durant, Oklahoma who is a very good friend of a very good friend.
...And one of two buds who refers to us as  "Fellow Travelers."   
It must be a movement or something.  You know,  like the '30's.

Subject: Republican Talking Points

Greetings Fellow Travelers:

       The Cindy Sheehan smear is in full swing!

       I was just checking up on the most recent news on Cindy Sheehan in Crawford, Texas.

       Here are links to two of the top three "news" stories on Google.com this morning:

       http://news.yahoo.com/s/nypost/20050816/cm_nypost/cindysheehan39sagenda

       http://slate.msn.com/id/2124500/

       Interestingly, BOTH articles use variations of the same "hot-button" anti-Democrat phrase:

       The first article from the NY Post states: "Cindy Sheehan is a fully fledged member of the Michael Moore wing of the Democratic Party."

       While Hitchens writes: "Sheehan has obviously taken a short course in the Michael Moore/Ramsey Clark school of Iraq analysis and has not succeeded in making it one atom more elegant or persuasive."

       Sounds like the "talking points" are holding fast!

       Also note the tone of both articles.

       In addition, the "talking point" that Sheehan is not just a tool of the left but is being pressured by Move-On.org continues. Oh yea. She's unpatriotic as well.

       This comes out loud and clear on this site: http://www.cafepress.com/gohomecindy

       Here's what they say: "Pressured by left-wing groups such as Move-On.org, Cindy Sheehan has made a mockery of her son's death. Her son died serving a noble cause. The fact that these left wing groups hope to score political points from his death is simply disgusting. Cindy needs to go home to her family and show some respect for her son's honorable sacrifice. www.ShopMetroSpy.com"

       Disgusting indeed.

       Solidarity,

       Stan.



--

Monday, August 15, 2005

I've got Job Security...

But then I'm a shrink.     Seriously,  though,  I think that the mortuary affairs guys tend to  get the most damaged  by the experience,  especially in a bad war. Brutal, brutal  work.  


Oddly enough,  although not typically a source of PTSD,  the military Psych units are also filled with recruiters

--

US Marine pleads not guilty in nightclub shooting

BOSTON (Reuters) - A U.S. Marine who was named "Marine of the Year" last month for his service  in raq pleaded not guilty on Monday to attempted murder after he opened fire on a crowd outside a Massachusetts nightclub, wounding two people.

Daniel Cotnoir, who has been treated for post-war stress since serving in Iraq where he worked as a mortician preparing bodies of U.S. soldiers for burial, was accused by police of firing a shotgun from a window of his apartment in Lawrence into a group of revelers early Saturday after having complained to police about the noise....

He is being held without bail for 20 days at Bridgewater State Hospital where he will undergo psychiatric tests to see if he is fit to stand trial, Kelley said....

In an interview with a local newspaper, Cotnoir described collecting bloodied body parts of dead soldiers after blasts in Iraq and said he had sought counseling at a veterans hospital after returning home because his war-time job took a heavy psychological toll on him.



--

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Sesame Street Meets Jack the Ripper











I'm talking about Wonder Showzen on MTV-2. It seems to come on Fridays at 9:30 and Sundays. (Hey, I Tivo; it comes in automatically on my command.)

It's ostensibly a children's show that has forsaken all that is holy and good. It's evil, evil, evil.

And screamingly funny.

I feel so guilty watching young children say things that I'm not entirely sure is legal for young children to say. I hope MTV's lawyers hae been doing their job so that I don't get arrested watching this. I really can't help myself.

Ohhhh... I need to find a W.S.A. (Wonder Showzen Anonymous). On the other hand, as my first fiancee taught me, if it isn't worth doing with a massive dose of guilt, it's not worth doing at all.


--

Culled From Recent News

First there's Frank Rich's opinion piece that states in mainstream newspaper that we have simply lost the Iraqi experiment.

Someone Tell the President the War is Over
Published: August 14, 2005

"Nothing that happens on the ground in Iraq can turn around the fate of this war in America: not a shotgun constitution rushed to meet an arbitrary deadline, not another Iraqi election, not higher terrorist body counts, not another battle for Falluja (where insurgents may again regroup, The Los Angeles Times reported last week). A citizenry that was asked to accept tax cuts, not sacrifice, at the war's inception is hardly in the mood to start sacrificing now. There will be neither the volunteers nor the money required to field the wholesale additional American troops that might bolster the security situation in Iraq."

He actually makes a lot of good points.
------------

Then there's this long-ish but very good article about the realities of being a "private security company" in iraq:


The Other Army
Published: August 14, 2005

"When I met with Lawrence Peter, a short man with a fiery voice, he raged that the press refused to accept the companies' newly chosen term: ''We are not private military companies! We are private security companies! Private security!'' He justified the distinction by saying: ''The work is defensive. We protect.'' Sometimes, though, the distinction seems secondary. No matter what you want to call Triple Canopy and its men, when the Mahdi Army -- a radical Shiite force loyal to the militant cleric Moktada al-Sadr -- attacked at Kut, the primary truth was that the company was fighting a war.

"A current training adviser for Triple Canopy was, in early April 2004, in charge of defending the occupation's Kut headquarters. (For security reasons, it is Triple Canopy policy that employees now in Iraq or likely to return not be identified by their full names.) John, a tall spike of a man of 50, with a graying brush mustache, spent 26 years in the U.S. Army, much of that time with Delta. He was on the first invading helicopter into Grenada in 1983; his helicopter and the others behind him were riddled and ravaged by bullets, and three soldiers sitting near him were shot. ''I've never taken so much fire again till Kut,'' he told me in May. ''Kut was like stepping out into the air -- you know you might not exist any longer.''
----------------------


One other interesting thing in the news. According to AFP by way of Australian Broadcasting Online, Outsourcing looks like it's going to change the face of the mercenary business. So much for those big bucks.

H
alf-price Colombian fighters offered for Iraq
Last Update: Saturday, August 13, 2005. 9:00pm (AEST)

A US company operating out of Ecuador says it has signed up about 1,000 Colombian police and military staff to work as hired guns in Iraq, for less than half of their US counterparts' salaries.

Colombians "have been fighting terrorists for the past 41 years and are experts in their respective areas" such as explosives and guerrilla warfare, Epi Security and Investigation says on its website, iraqijobcenter.com.

The company based in the Ecuadoran city of Manta is run by American Jeffrey Shippy, who is in Baghdad, according to his Ecuadoran wife.

He works out of his home not far from the Manta air base Washington rented from the Ecuadoran Air Force to relocate some of the troops and planes it used to have in Panama.

The Colombian daily El Tiempo reported Friday that the Colombians would be paid $US2,500 to $US5,000 a month, roughly half what their US and British counterparts earn.

-AFP

Good Bumper Stickers: Update






Here's a link to a site actually selling good, original Progressive bumper stickers.

-

Saturday, August 13, 2005

News Flash: Sky is Blue

washingtonpost.com
U.S. Lowers Sights On What Can Be Achieved in Iraq
Administration Is Shedding 'Unreality' That Dominated Invasion, Official Says
By Robin Wright and Ellen Knickmeyer
Washington Post Staff Writers
Sunday, August 14, 2005; A01

What's Wrong With This Data?


I was perusing the DEA website to learn about my adopted state's drug infestation when I ran across this bar graph. *Sigh.*

Somehow the bars bear no relationship with the numbers above them...
I wonder what this could mean.

I'm trying to figure out how to get graphing software to plot something that wrong...

OK,, maybe it was a glitch, but the same problem was in the graph of Florida's Meth-lab busts. No one bothered to look at what they were posting to the web site.

Reminds me of my Air Force Officer Indoctrination Course for young doctors. Generally excellent presentations, right up till they did the "Communist Menace" lecture. They broke every rule of the honest presentation of statistical data that I was ever taught.

I have found bad statistics are the hallmark of propaganda efforts. Not that the Soviets weren't our deserved enemy, and not that drugs don't cause damage. But for some reason, both these efforts seemed to put flashy bullshit above the truth. There seems to be lots of money to be made in the presence of bad statistics.

I wonder if there's a relationship between bad statistics and blood in the streets.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Bumper Sticker Slogans

These slogans have been rattling around in my head for a while. They are either my own or stolen from extremely obscure sources. Obviously most are political. The picture of the President is real.

Any other nifty sticker ideas?


Evolution is Intelligent Design


TIME FLIES WHEN
YOU'RE UNCONSCIOUS


If it Weren't For Propaganda, a Lot of
People Would be Completely Ignorant.














Time Flies Like an Arrow;
Fruit Flies Like a banana
(Attributed to an Omni Magazine Contest Winner)




The Invasion:

Worse than Just Evil, It's a Mistake.


"The United States is in No Way a Christian Nation..."
-John Adams & The Senate, The Treaty of Tripoli, 1797

----------------------------------------------------------------------

UPDATE:

Do you think that it'd be (t) reasonable to bring back

Better Dead Than Red (?)

Am I hardening in my views or what? Just don't get me onto the Blue's backs until after the next couple of elections...

And a couple of good ones (classic and new) from Jame R.:

Evolution is a Fact

Get off the damn phone & drive!

And Man said: Let there be God

Never trust a man who's god is in the skies
-- William Blake

Hey you! Out of the gene pool!

Visualize whirled peas

----------------------------

We have the blogging resources to handle the Bumper sticker situation.
I say, Bring 'Em On!




Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Another Slow News Day

I mean aside from the growing daily body count. It was all so predictable- And predicted.

So I've been reflecting. I remember the day after the election last November. I was listening to some man on the street being interviewed. He said he voted for Bush because he thought that Bush needed to clean up the mess he made. Of everything I heard in the aftermath of that election- nothing made me so angry as to hear that.

I mean, there's nothing dumber than rewarding failure, rewarding bad judgment, rewarding the con man's ploy,- right? With Bush in office, we can only expect more of the same.

But since watching history unfold for the last couple of seasons, I'm starting to appreciate what that man on the street said.

Had Kerry been elected, and the body count escalating just as it is now.... Imagine what the Right Wing Noise Machine would be blasting.....

Nope. This is all Bush's baby, and the propaganda machine is breaking down.

It's odd to think that what is worse for the country is good for fighting evil in American politics- at least in the short run. A Sophie's choice.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Urgent Product Recall

Dog Condoms

The problem of dog overpopulation is a real one. However, the noble goal of preventing unwanted dog pregnancy does not justify the means being used. Millions of brutal forced castrations and female genital mutilations take place every year in America. We need to put a stop to these atrocities and give every living creature the respect it deserves.

Just as forced sterilization isn't the answer for human population control, it's not the solution for dogs. Instead, we should respect dogs' rights as living beings by honoring their instincts and sexuality and provide them with safe, effective birth control.

Facts:

  • Over 46 million dogs have suffered genital mutilation in the US

  • 4-8 millions healthy "unwanted" dogs are slaughtered each year


Solution:

Condoms

Just 24 Hours later...


Yep, Red State didn't like my type around there after all.

The post that got me banned:

The Problem With Getting Everything You Ask For

...As in conservative control of the Executive, Legislative, Judiciary, Press...

As James Madison said, "The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many, and whether hereditary, selfappointed, or elective, may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny." (Federalist #47)

I think what I've been calling "corruption" is a close synonym to Madison's "Tyranny."

Or, in language that a recent poster to my threads would appreciate, as Spiderman's Uncle said, "With great power comes great responsibility."

How do you maintain the checks and balances against corruption that normally take place with powers divided between the parites?

I think that deserves vigorous debate, being critical to the future of the nation.


My Notice?:

At long last By: Leon H

Ya been warned. In response, you post a diary that blatantly accused the Republicans of corruption, then none too subtly also accuses them of tyranny. Further, in response to a user that we all pretty well like, you as good as call him a Nazi.

Welcome to The Pile™, and may the rest of your obtuse troll brethren follow you soon.

Macho Nachos - Roe Delenda Est!


---------------

I was atacking them personally. I don't suppose they had any reaction to the concept that power tends to lead lead to corruption.... Nooo. The topic of corruption cannot be discussed..

Hum loudly enough, and it isn't there.

"At long last..." They were gunning for me. In Fairess, I also used the word lebensraum in a reply, when someone suggested that conservatives did not have even 2 of the branches I listed, which I found incredulous. "The Rules" of their site never mentioned that allusions to expansionistic rhetoric are bannable.

Of course, against their written policies, I was called "Mad," "Incapable," "Dumb." I saw a number of posts sweepingly equating liberalism with immorality. All those epithets were just fine by the moderators, despite the following:

No profanity.
No personal attacks.
No harassment or demonization of a particular individual.
No disruptive behavior or off-topic remarks for their own sake.

Banning for ideological reasons will take place only in the cases of fundamentally anti-American ideologies. Nazis, Islamists, Communists and racists are unwelcome at redstate.org. Any other person of basic good sense and goodwill, regardless of party, is welcome to participate and hopefully come around to the ideals of Republicanism.

I have appealed, I don't know why. I ain't gonna walk on eggs and be told to "sharpen my crayolas" by abusive posters, then be banned for that. I had just started to feel like there was actually an enlightened conservative site. I guess that they do not find me a person of good sense or good will. I am one of them.

Evidently, enlightenment is largely incompatable with being in power. Thus the cycles of history continue.

Hey, have you noticed how much Newt Gingrinch is smoozing up with liberal outlets lattely? He subtly accused he current administration of being out of touch on NPR's "This I Believe." He'd never make it on Redstate.org. And neither would that Elietist, James Madison.




Sunday, August 07, 2005

A Seriously Cool Picture

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Some People Make a Sport of Picking Fights in Bars

My preferred venue these days is RedState.org.


OK, maybe a bar fight isn't the right analogy. Let's call it a spirited coffeehouse debate! But I want to make them have to work for their viewpoints.

Do you think they have the fortitude to defend their position?

UPDATE: Evidently they don't. They rather quickly banned me from posting. Ostensibly for being "too pointy." I did notice that crude insults aimed at me were tolerated without problem. I guess they like an echo chamber.

How long do you think I'd last on "Free Republic?"

UPDATE 2: I guess they didn't ban me. I don't know why I couldn't post for a while, but I'm back online with a request to remove my irritated graphic from this site. My faith in the hope for humanity is restored.

Update 3: On acclimation to redstate.org, I find that while they have their Rovian Minions, and just plain pains, there are plenty of folks who think for themselves- more than I''ve seen elsewhere. The headlines tend towards massive spin, but there are moderating forces afoot. Pick an inflamatory headline and then read the comments. It's nice to have some stimulating conversations with people of a somewhat different orientation.
While it is a picnic, as elsewhere, you have to put up with the ants. Most posters do not have well-thought-out arguments, but some are just great.

Friday, August 05, 2005

What? Ho! Dan O'Neill Featured on BoingBoing


Hey, The Air Pirates Funnies are scanned onto the internet. This was the opening salvo in the copyright wars back in the 1970's. (Mr. O'Neill, as you may surmise, is Irish, and does seem to enjoy a good fight. He took on the Disney Company. And lost. Sort of.)

See all the lurid mouse sex for the first time since a judge ordered these destroyed! And be sure to check out Dan O'Neill's books and comix pdf's (scroll down on the pdf's), some dating back to when he had a strip in the SF Chronicle in the 1960's.

And remember, I posted Mr. ONeill's stuff before Boingboing!
Boingboing!!! Welcome back Dan!

Hastert Taking Bribes From the Turks?


The New Vanity Fair has an article on Sibel Edmonds
,  the naturalized patriot who has had quite the odyssey uncovering evidence of espionage,  possibly by the Turkish government,  then dealing with an FBI bureaucracy that forcefully closed ranks on the issue by invoking a little used National Security law,  burying it without investigation,  possibly to save face.  This article may shed light on just who's face is being saved.  She may be risking arrest (I don't know for sure) with this article,  but with no fanfare at all,  there seems to be indirect evidence of Senior Republican Dennis Hastert taking >$50,000 in small check bribes from Turkish nationals in order to make a Congressional bill (on the genocide of Armenians 90 years ago)  go away...   WHile there's no direct proof,  the conversations between Turks took place and Rep Hastert did make the provision in the bill go away at the very last moment.  He also gets far more small contributions tham most other politicians at his level.

Quite the bombshell if it could ever be proved (doubtful).  Nevertheless,  it's something that needs to be aired, because it would suggest the degree that the FBI is willing to place party priorities above national security.


Another Wiki Stickit

More incomprehensible than the Wikipedia!
More comprehensive than the Wickerpedia!
More prevarications than the Hackenthorpe Book of Lies!

It's the Uncyclopedia!

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Three US JAG's refuse to get involved in GTMO Prosecutions


Because there seems to be an Aussie among those being prosecuted, this is getting covered in the Austrailian and British press,  but I see nothing on it in the American press when I look under Google News.    Not like it's significant or anything,  right?  After all,  it's just one big misunderstanding according to the Pentagon spokesman...  You know there ar sociopaths (or similar) in the works when it smells like chaos.
 
From Australian Broadcasting Corp:
 

Third prosecutor critical of Guantanamo trials

A third US military prosecutor has walked out of the commissions process set up to try Guantanamo Bay detainees because of concerns it was unfair, the ABC has learned.

Australian detainee David Hicks is due to stand trial under the system.

Air Force Captain Carrie Wolf chose to take a reassignment along with other prosecutors.

Capt Wolf asked to leave the Office of Military Commissions at the same time as two other colleagues, Major Robert Preston and Captain John Carr.

Earlier this week, the ABC revealed that in March 2004, Maj Preston and Capt Carr requested transfers because they believed the process was "rigged" and pursuing "marginal" cases.

Maj Preston was nominated for the Air Force's outstanding judge advocate award last year and Captain Carr has been promoted to major since leaving the military commissions.

It is understood Capt Wolf shared her colleagues' concerns and also asked for a redeployment.

Capt Wolf did not return calls.

The ABC has also been able to speak to an Air Force judge advocate-general who was closely involved with the military commissions while these problems were unfolding.

He supports the process and agrees with the Pentagon's characterisation that a total breakdown in personal relationships led to misunderstandings.

"The personality conflicts reached such a point that folks in the office weren't talking to each other and that led to a lot of misunderstandings," the judge said.

Foreign Minister Alexander Downer says the Australian Government has been reassured by the Pentagon's internal investigation.

"There was a very thorough, a very thorough investigation into these allegations because amongst the material in these emails are very serious allegations," he said.

The Pentagon says it has made changes to improve the legal process in the year since the emails were written.