Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Cubans pissed about Bush's new policy

Lose the Cuban vote, lose Florida. And I thought Carl Rove was a genius.

Paying the Price: The Mounting Costs of the Iraq War

Be sure to get the pdf version of this informative document to pass around in your inter-office mail. Considering how much we spent, and that less than 20,000 people have died, I'd say the US military is not a very efficient killing machine in terms of cost per death.

As if the deaths themselves weren't expensive enough, then there's the money we keep pouring down this hole.

Meanwhile, when Dick Cheney's face appeared on the Jumbotron last night at Yankee stadium, the crowd stopped singing God Bless America, and booed him.

I love New York.

Loudon Wainwright III - "Presidents' Day"

My wife Robin and I were there at McCabe's guitar shop this past March when this song was recorded. Loudon's giving it away as part of his bit to make sure that next President's Day there's "no George in the White House, O happy days!"

Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Lying sons of bitches can't even quote a movie right

The right wing in this country is getting crazier by the minute. The talking heads are starting to sound like the guy last week at the Kerry fundraiser in front of the Disney Hall, who screamed fuck you at the top of his lungs in my face. Now I've done that to people before, and I know for a fact that that only happens when you're really exasperated and completely out of other things to say. So, when Dick Cheney can't even argue that he's not benefitting from Halliburton, or that Halliburton hasn't benefitted from his position running the government, he goes off.

But now they're out there trying to poke holes in the facts behind Michael Moore's new movie, Fahrenheit 9/11. And, as Moore puts it on his site in this series of rebuttals, the people, most notably Michael Isikoff of Newsweek, who want to poke these factual holes in the movie can only do so if they misquote the movie.

Maybe they are just so hooked on the Bush Brainwashing program that they can't see that, as the St. Petersberg Times reported on June 9, even though the movie never claims that filghts with Saudis were zipping around picking up Saudi passengers before the grounding of all flights were lifted, at least one such flight did take place.

So people like Isikoff are saying that the movie claims there were flights before the grounding was lifted, which it does not. But, in fact, there was at least one private flight, from Tampa to Kentucky, that flew with the permission of someone high up, while other flights were still grounded.

Here's the relevant paragraph from the Moore site:
(Note: The St. Petersberg Times article to which Unger refers also states, "The 9/11 Commission, which has said the flights out of the United States were handled appropriately by the FBI, appears concerned with the handling of the Tampa flight... Most of the aircraft allowed to fly in U.S. airspace on Sept. 13 were empty airliners being ferried from the airports where they made quick landings on Sept. 11. The reopening of the airspace included paid charter flights, but not private, nonrevenue flights." Jean Heller, TIA now verifies flight of Saudis; The government has long denied that two days after the 9/11 attacks, the three were allowed to fly. St. Petersburg Times, June 9, 2004.)

Friday, June 25, 2004

Changing the Tone in Washington

Hey, all you Republicans: GO FUCK YOURSELVES. Major league assholes indeed.

Show us yer yarbles, if ya got any yarbles...

I got so upset during Fahrenheit 9/11, I wanted to smack George W Bush upside the head. I wanted to strap his smug ass into a chair, pry his eyes open Clockwork Orange like, and force him to vidie the movie over and over until he begged to be forgiven.

It's sad to think that he won't watch it, because he doesn't have any yarbles, the unic jelly.

It was so nice to sit in a theater surrounded by people who I knew thought like me, or at least would by the end of the movie. I urge everyone to grab someone who's ever told you voting doesn't make a difference and drag them to see this movie.

Dare your conservative friends to see it. Dare them to argue the facts, because they can't. They can argue the tone, they can say it's an unfair attack (remind them of all the unfair attacks Republicans make all the time, hell they have a whole network for it, remind them of Dick Cheney on the Senate floor yesterday saying "Go Fuck Yourself" to Sen. Leahy), but they can't argue the facts.

I dare any Bush lover to tell the soldier who says he's going to work hard for the Democratic party (after being a Republican for a long time) a terrorist. Because, like the idiots in front of the Disney Hall yesterday, they just love to say you love Al Qaeda if you don't love Bush. I'd like to see the fat frat puke who told me my union needed me to beat up old ladies call that young soldier a terrorist sympathizer. I'd love to see the redneck who screamed "FUCK YOU" in my face do the same thing to that soldier.

And most of all, I'd like to see George W Bush, like he did today in a contentious Irish TV interview by Carol Coleman, say to Lila Lipscomb, who's son, Sergeant Michael F. Pederson, died in Iraq after sending home a letter saying how furious he was at Bush, that no one feels more for the dead soldiers than he does.

What an asshole.

Thursday, June 24, 2004

The Dolphin Walked Away

I wore my George W Bush the Bankruptcy President shirt (The W is the Enron E on it's side, I got it from to work today. Good thing. I forgot that tonight is the Kerry Fundraiser next door at the Disney Hall (I'm working at the Mark Taper Forum). I went across the street to the "free speech zone" where an idiot was dressed up as a dolphin, complete with Flipper signs, you know, calling Kerry a flip-flopper. So, I went right up to the Dolphin and the Flipper sign carrier, and started listing George Bush's flip flops. The Dolphin walked away.

He was replaced by a red neck who was quite angry at me. I was trying to talk to the woman with the bull horn who said I was just as bad as the terrorists because I wasn't supporting the president. That's the one I hate the most, and I went off. I said "do you think I'd bother yelling at you idiots if I hated my country? A few more of them started yelling at me, one guy kept saying to ignore me. Then the bull horn bitch started saying Al Qaeda was waiting for me, whatever that means. I'm not sure exactly what I said at that point, but before I knew what was happening, the redneck was in my face saying "FUCK YOU" over and over as loud as he could. Nice Dick Cheney impersonation. We were chest to chest with me daring him to do something stupid in front of the cops, who were now on their way over, but one of the other Bush lovers convinced him to ignore me.

As I was walking away, the camera crew that had been covering the pitiful little group of fascists chased me down and asked me to say something for the camera, which I did, I don't exactly remember what, something about being sick of people like that. They had me sign a release so I can appear in their trio documentary.

They'll let me know when it airs, and I'll be sure to mention it here.

I had to walk away from work to get away from these rabid fools, so I headed toward MOCA (LA's Museum of Contemporary Art), where there's a Nancy Rubens sculpture of twisted airplane parts. They were having some kind of fundraiser and there was Judge Joe Brown. I told him, when he'd ruled in my favor when I was on his show, that I wanted to shake his hand someday, and I did.

On my way back I stopped and talked with a couple who's son has been in Iraq for 15 months. Great guy. He had a camera and we chatted for minute while he taped it. We traded cards, and I can't seem to find his at the moment. I was a little flabbergasted at the time. I hope he finds me.

Wednesday, June 23, 2004

George W Bush, Anti-Christ

Ok, now these people are really starting to scare me. When they start in with the Armageddon crap, while these sissy-hawks have the world's nukes at their fingertips, I start thinking survivalism...

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

My Life by Bill Clinton

While you're waiting for your copy of My Life by Bill Clinton, check out the Clinton Presidential Center. Unlike the right wing, I can love Bill Clinton for what he was, but not love everything he did. As I read more about his presidency, and I compare it to this one, Bill Clinton comes off looking pretty damn good.

Immigrants filling nearly 3 of 10 new U.S. jobs

Yeah, boy, big time job growth. Craptacular jobs, with little or no benefits, going to non-citizens.
The high proportion of new jobs going to recent immigrants may reflect the fact that the current recovery has thus far been different from most past upturns. In recent months, as overall job growth has begun to improve, most of the new jobs appear to have come in categories that require relatively low skills and pay relatively low wages — the kinds of jobs for which new immigrants are strong competitors. In the past, the early stages of economic recoveries have been marked by growth in industrial jobs that pay above-average wages.
Furthermore, wage growth is far below what one would expect at this point in a "recovery." Of course, in any argument with a ditto head or Cheney lover, you'll just be accused of whining when you bring this up. These right wing nuts have been so desperate for good news on the economy, that when you undercut it, they get really mad and say things like Mark Luther, the resident ditto head on Al Franken's show, said when Al said these were mostly crappy jobs: "That's the problem with you liberals, you love to whine." Up to that point he'd been arguing pretty well for a right winger. But his whole argument came down to how the economy is "roaring along." And when that argument gets cut down with facts like those from the Pew Hispanic Center Report today, it really pisses them off. So, get out there and piss off some right wingers!

Sunday, June 13, 2004

"My father crapped bigger ones than George W. Bush."—Ron Reagan, Jr.

Thursday, June 10, 2004

White House lies about Saudi flights after 9-11

This is HUGE! The lying bastards at the White House are going to have some explaining to do on this one. Seems Craig Unger, author of House of Bush, House of Saud, was right. And all you screaming asshole Republicans who have been calling him, me, Michael Moore, and others liars should all start apologizing now! And now the questions begin. Who were these guys. How many Bin Ladens. Who was the one with the same last name as a high-jacker? Why was the plane allowed to fly and who let it? Were these people questioned? By whom?

Here's the story from the St. Petersburg Times: TIA now verifies flight of Saudis, The government has long denied that two days after the 9/11 attacks, the three were allowed to fly.

A Tortured Definition of A Little Bit of Torture

Richard Cohen has a great column about torture in today's Washington Post.

Saturday, June 05, 2004

And a Little Something from the Egads! File

Thanks to my friend and client Cherie Attix of the Hale Hookipa Inn Maui bed & breakfast for sending me this Egads!

Bush's Erratic Behavior Worries White House Aides

I hope Ronald Reagan finally finds the Cadillac driving welfare queen he, or any other Republican, could never find here on earth. Wherever he is, I hope he's having ketchup 3 meals a day, and I hope he's meeting some people who really fought in a war. I hope he has to sleep next to one of the homeless crazy people he kicked out of federally subsidized hospitals.

Thursday, June 03, 2004

From Eric Alterman's Column in the Nation: Kerry's Dance

How can this be avoided? Quite easily, if Kerry could only admit to the entire country what he told me and a bunch of other reporters back in December in Al Franken's living room: Like so much of the country--and its elite media--he made a terrible mistake in trusting George W. Bush. He underestimated both the fanaticism and incompetence of the President and his advisers and their willingness to mislead the country into war. He thought George Tenet's CIA reports were on the level. He imagined Colin Powell was more than just window-dressing.

More Fun with Republicans

The following is an exchange I'm having with a Bush lover who is suffering from the same affliction as W himself. Can't defend your actions? Just attack the other guy....


SO, the way you defend Bush is to attack Democrats?

Well, buddy, I never said they weren't wrong too. As David Kay said, we were all wrong. That's why I'm really pissed that I have to vote for Kerry (except that he's good on the environment, which Bush is a nightmare on). Because he couldn't see what Wesley Clark and Howard Dean could, that this was all a big line of bullshit. That Chalabi and curveball were lying to get us to attack. That Scott Ritter (former arms inspector, Marine, and Republican) was right, that we had destroyed the weapons -- and he argued with Joe Biden and plenty of other Democrats who were also wrong.

As for the flip-flopping, geeze, do you really want me to list all the things Bush said he would do and didn't or vice versa? Steel Tariffs? Creating a 9-11 commission. Department of Homeland Security. Testifying to the 9-11 commission. Condoleezza testifying.

Kerry tries to take nuanced positions on issues. Maybe if I was there looking at all the bullshit evidence, I would have been gung-ho too. Hell, Colin Powell almost had me convinced with his bullshit speech at the UN. So, I think even you could understand that Kerry is trying to say, yes, we should defend ourselves from tyrants who want to hurt us, but we had better be godamn sure about our facts, which W wasn't.

But beyond all that shit, I'd like to know where you right wingers get off just ignoring the fact that these Chicken Hawks are big on weapons systems but short on actually helping the troops. Why did they ever go in without the right body armor or Humvee armor? Why are they running short on ammo?

These guys don't give a shit about the troops. They care most about PRIVATIZING IRAQ, and privatizing a lot of the things the Armed Forces used to do for themselves. So now, instead of having an Army truck driver trained to drive in a protected convoy, we have a Halliburton truck driver making $125,000 a year doing it. Nice use of my tax dollars.

So, not party facts, just cold hard facts.

The fact is that you and your Republican Party friends can't defend Bush so you attack Kerry. Well, you're going to have to dig up more than shit like Kerry wanted to raise taxes on the rich before he voted for more money for Halliburton in Iraq to change most people's minds.

You guys always say you're providing facts that are some how better than ours. It's such a fox new fair and balanced thing. In fact, your facts are more tainted. And, you just ignore the point at hand. That if all these people were wrong about Iraq, then perhaps we should get rid of the ones -- the neo-cons -- who were most responsible for the bad information. And since the neo-cons are pretty much the entire administration, then Kerry is the only alternative.

The fact is, most of you people are supporting Bush because you hate Gays, you hate taxes (even if they're paying for body armor), you hate liberals, you hate environmentalists, and, well, you just hate.

Frankly, I'd like to say, thanks a fucking lot. Now you've taught me to hate too. I hate Bush with all my heart, and I'm learning to hate all you who can't even support him in an argument. Go ahead, defend him without attacking Kerry. I bet you can't.

My comments on each of these quotes come below each one, Joe. My comments are marked with a >>>


Try to Defend these "PUBLISHED" truths !!!

Trying to decide who is telling the Truth..

Lets look at cold hard facts, just about the big issue on the table.. The IRAQ war..

The Democrats say, Trust them, they are right, Bush Lied.
Ok GUYS I believe you, BUT how can I trust you when you also said:

"One way or the other, we are determined to deny Iraq the capacity to develop weapons of mass destruction and the missiles to deliver them. That is our bottom line."
- President Clinton, Feb. 4, 1998

>>> Which he did.

"If Saddam rejects peace and we have to use force, our purpose is clear. We want to seriously diminish the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program."
- President Clinton, Feb. 17, 1998

>>> Which he did.

"Iraq is a long way from [the USA], but what happens there matters a great deal here. For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us or our allies is the greatest security threat we face."
- Madeline Albright, Feb 18, 1998

>>> Still is. North Korea. Ah, shucks, no oil there.

"He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten times since 1983."
- Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser, Feb, 18, 1998

>>> Since 1982, when Reagan gave them to him and helped him aim them at Iranians.

"[We urge you, after consulting with Congress, and consistent with the U.S Constitution and laws, to take necessary actions (including, if appropriate, air and missile strikes on suspect Iraqi sites) to respond effectively to the threat posed by Iraq's refusal to end its weapons of mass destruction programs."
- Letter to President Clinton, signed by Sens. Carl Levin,
Tom Daschle, John Kerry, and others Oct. 9, 1998

>>> Air and missile strikes. Not a $300 billion dollar invasion. I never understood why Republicans, who used to agree with Buchanan that we should be spending less money here, are so protective of spending more money there. If you're against government spending, then what the hell?

"Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process."
- Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), Dec. 16, 1998

>>> Yep. But, what Nancy, and many others, didn’t mention is what Scott Ritter says: we found them all. And destroyed them. The other info coming in was from halabi and friends who stood to get rich if we would go in and overthrow Saddam.

"Hussein has ... chosen to spend his money on building weapons of mass destruction and palaces for his cronies."
- Madeline Albright, Clinton Secretary of State, Nov. 10, 1999

>>> Wow. Sounds like what Bush is doing.

"There is no doubt that ... Saddam Hussein has invigorated his weapons programs. Reports indicate that biological, chemical and nuclear programs continue apace and may be back to pre-Gulf War status. In addition, Saddam continues to redefine delivery systems and is doubtless using the cover of a licit missile program to develop longer-range missiles that will threaten the United States and our allies."
- Letter to President Bush, Signed by Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL,) and others, December 5, 2001

>>> Yes, but how do you go about dealing with it. Do you keep waving the big stick and send in more inspectors? Or do you kill and maim thousands of people, piss off the rest of the world, and make your buddies in the oil business richer?

"We begin with the common belief that Saddam Hussein is a tyrant and a threat to the peace and stability of the region. He has ignored the mandated of the United Nations and is building weapons of mass destruction and the means of delivering them."
- Sen. Carl Levin (D, MI), Sept. 19, 2002

>>> Wow. He's just as wrong as Bush. How does this make Bush less culpable?

"We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country."
- Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002

>>> Wrong, just like W. But I doubt if Gore would have wasted billions and over 800 American lives on this adventure. I bet Gore would have put this much into Afghanistan, you know, to find the people who really attacked us on 9-11...

"Iraq's search for weapons of mass destruction has proven impossible to deter and we should assume that it will continue for as long as Saddam is in power."
- Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002

>>> Again, wrong. Amazing, both sides of the heavily financed political spectrum were wrong. Again, how does that make W less culpable? You think Gore would have outed Valerie Plame when Joseph Wilson discovered the Niger uranium lie?

"We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction."
- Sen. Ted Kennedy (D, MA), Sept. 27, 2002

>>> And the inspectors were finding them and destroying them.

"The last UN weapons inspectors left Iraq in October of 1998. We are confident that Saddam Hussein retains some stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, and that he has since embarked on a crash course to build up his chemical and biological warfare capabilities. Intelligence reports indicate that he is seeking nuclear weapons..."
- Sen. Robert! Byrd (D , WV), Oct. 3, 2002

>>> Completely false. Hans Blix was kicked out of Iraq in 2003, while he was still looking.

"I will be voting to give the President of the United States the authority to use force-- if necessary-- to disarm Saddam Hussein because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security."
- Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Oct. 9, 2002

>>> What the hell good are inspections if you don't have the use of force threat to back it up? And Kerry, or any of the others who voted for the resolution, were given no idea that Chalabi's evidence was so shaky, or that W would actually fuck this whole thing up so badly, all the while cutting veterans benefits and relying heavily on reserves and national guard people to kick in doors in Baghdad, which they're not really trained to do.

"There is unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons and will likely have nuclear weapons within the next five years ... We also should remember we have always underestimated the progress Saddam has made in development of weapons of mass destruction."
- Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D, WV), Oct 10, 2002

>>> Again, wrong. Where do you get off with this shit? These people were all wrong! How does that make it OK?

"He has systematically violated, over the course of the past 11 years, every significant UN resolution that has demanded that he disarm and destroy his chemical and biological weapons, and any nuclear capacity. This he has refused to do"
- Rep. Henry Waxman (D, CA), Oct. 10, 2002

>>> A lie. From a decent man who is trying to get to the bottom of Cheney's Halliburton bullshit. But, hey, nobody's perfect.

"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al Qaeda members .. It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons."
- Sen. Hillary Clinton (D, NY), Oct 10, 2002

>>> Of course, like W, she doesn't offer any proof. Hell, she was pretty much just repeating what the administration had just told her in committee meetings.

"We are in possession of what I think to be compelling evidence that Saddam Hussein has, and has had for a number of years, a developing capacity for the production and storage of weapons of mass destruction."
- Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL), Dec. 8, 2002

>>> Capacity. Yeah. And those mobile labs were helium trucks.

"Without question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime ... He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation .. And now he is miscalculating America's response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction ... So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real ..."
- Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Jan. 23. 2003

>>> Disarm. Not regime change.

I'm not even going to bother with the rest of this, because if you know anything about how the senate works, you'd know that Senators often switch their votes on things, in order to change them into something they like. They often vote against something only when they know it's going to win, so it plays better at home. And all kinds of basic politics like that. But for Bush lovers to be saying Kerry's a flip-flopper, when anti nation building Bush is spending my grandchildren's tax dollars on Iraqi pipelines and electric grids and schools, while ours are falling apart, well, it's just the height of hypocrisy. Kerry wanted to increase taxes on rich people to pay for this fiasco! Bush wants to borrow the money and pay it back with interest, so it's even more expensive in the long run. You want to tell me, like Cheney did, that "deficits don't matter"? Ah, how quickly Republicans will throw out their long-held beliefs to make a buck....

Typical. You just assume I'm some kind of party hack. I'm just as pissed at most of these Democrats, including Kerry. But I believe Kerry has a history of working in a bipartisan manner like he has with McCain. And I think the fact that he thinks about things before rushing in is a good thing, especially when so many lives are on the line.

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

"If the cause be not good, the King himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs, and arms, and heads, chopped off in a battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all, 'We died at such a place.'"—Shakespeare, Henry V

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Great President

Ah, the Republican google bombers, showing solidarity with their right-wing bomber friends who killed so many in Oklahoma City, have been busy trying to make Michael Moore show up for miserable failure, and W show up for great president. Now, the link to great president should go to FDR, who's lasting legacy is under a full attack from these right-wing destruction addicts.