Saturday, October 26, 2002

Go Angels!
I've come around my friends. My good friend the Rottweiler, who I linked below, has made me see the error of my ways. It's a simple choice, really. If I continue along the path that I'm on I will wake up one morning to find that after being incinerated in a nuclear bomb blast dropped by one of Hussein's drone planes I will be condemned to a life in hell for my liberal views. It isn't yet clear which is hotter - the heat from a nuclear blast or from the fires of hell - but I don't want to be the one to find the answer that burning (ha ha!) question.

So, onward to Iraq I say. The sooner the better.

This decision did raise another question - how best can I serve my country in this righteous endeavour? Don't worry - I haven't wasted much time on it. The answer is clear. I could enlist and fight for my country, but the truth is my skills are needed at home. My readers need me.

I will continue to blog, as blog I must. My blogs will speak truth to power - to the 5th columnists and the liberal media. My blogs will inspire others - perhaps not to serve, but they will at least help to drum up the righteous fury necessary to win this holy war. As my new ideological soulmate James Lileks said in a recent column, 'This war is not for the faint at heart.' Never fear, fearless readers - my heart will never be faint, and my blogs will ensure that you too will never have the treasonous thoughts that your faint hearts, led astray by liberal propaganda, might inspire.

So stay with me as I blog for God and Country, for our fallen soldiers, for the soon to be liberated Iraqi children and yes, my readers, their soon to be liberated puppies. The ones that survive our righteous fury, at least.

Blog on. Let's roll.

MSNBC cancels Silwa and Kuby

Actually, who cares about that. What is really exciting, kids, is the fact that their partial replacement, Chris Janson, will soon be filling that timeslot with a program lovingly entitled "Countdown: Iraq." I guess I hadn't realized that MSNBC already had a primetime show entitled "Countdown: Iraq."

At least CNN has the good taste to call their hour of warmongering "Showdown Iraq," a title which lacks the air of inevitability that MSNBC's does.
Jeralyn from Talk Left shares her personal thoughts on Wellstone's death.

While the Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler offers its thoughts. Warning- includes words like 'idiotarian.'
Bruce Garrett, who needs permanent links to his posts, has this to say (scroll down):

Smarter Andrew Sullivan
reports today that Andrew has joined the ranks of regular columnists at the Washington Times.

To repeat...

If you tell a lie to make a person better, then that is not a sin.

-Sun Myung Moon

Andrew Sullivan has joined the ranks of regular columnists at the Washington Times.

The separation between religion and politics is what Satan likes most.

-Sun Myung Moon

Andrew Sullivan has joined the ranks of regular columnists at the Washington Times.

Father thinks about the three races, yellow, black, and white. Orientals can contribute in the spiritual aspect, white people can contribute in the analytical, scientific area, while black people can contribute in the physical area--physical educational development of physical fitness, the area of health....The talented area of black people is in this physical aspect.

-Sun Myung Moon

Andrew Sullivan has joined the ranks of regular columnists at the Washington Times.

Out of all the Saints sent by God, I think I am the most successful one already as it now stands.

-Sun Myung Moon

Andrew Sullivan has joined the ranks of regular columnists at the Washington Times.

By killing one man, Jesus, the Jewish people had to suffer for 2000 years. Countless numbers of people have been slaughtered. During the Second World War, 6 million people were slaughtered to cleanse all the sins of the Jewish people from the time of Jesus.

-Sun Myung Moon

There's more. And you should read it. And, as soon as a billionaire leader of the fringe left runs an influential newspaper in the nation's capital, let me know.

It isn't about the oil...

But, you know, there is oil there after all.

Though Iraq's future is hazy, energy companies have begun to weigh the roles they might play in the revival of the country's huge but dilapidated oil industry. According to a report by Deutsche Bank, oil field services companies like Schlumberger Ltd. and the Halliburton Corporation could be the early winners, but the prospects for oil companies themselves are less clear.

"We expect to see oil service contracts to rehabilitate old fields, but anticipate long-drawn-out negotiations on new fields," the report says.

Industry experts and the State Department have said that oil revenues will probably finance the rebuilding of Iraq, which has reserves second only to Saudi Arabia's. That would make repair of the industry a priority either for a new regime or for Saddam Hussein's government, if it satisfies United Nations weapons inspectors and the sanctions on Iraq end.

On a related note, read this article about the NeoCons' wet dream successor to Hussein.

But the untold riches that lie beneath the soil of Iraq are a powerful lure for multinational oil companies. "I would say that especially the U.S. oil companies ... look forward to the idea that Iraq will be open for business," says an executive from one of the world's largest oil companies, adding that the companies are trying hard not to be noticed.

"We don't have a stake in Iraq now," says another oil industry executive. "One of the frustrations that U.S. oil companies have is that the Russians, the French and the Chinese already have existing relations with Iraq. And the question is: How much of that will be sanctified by the people who succeed Saddam?"

The INC and its backers make no bones about the fact that the American forces gathering to attack Iraq will be liberating Iraq's oil. Unable to restrain himself, Chalabi blurted to The Washington Post that the INC intends to reward its American friends. "American companies will have a big shot at Iraqi oil," he proclaimed.

Meanwhile, economists allied with the INC -- including strategists at the Heritage Foundation, the AEI and JINSA -- are abuzz with plans to "denationalize" the Iraqi oil industry and then distribute it to Western, mostly American, companies. In late September, in "The Future of a Post-Saddam Iraq: A Blueprint for American Involvement," the Heritage Foundation's Ariel Cohen put forward a nearly complete scheme for the privatization of Iraq's oil, creating three separate companies for southern Iraq, the region around Baghdad and the Kirkuk fields in northern Iraq, with additional companies to operate pipelines and refineries and to develop Iraq's natural gas. In an interview, Cohen warned that France, Russia and China might find that their existing oil contracts with Iraq won't be honored by the INC. "It will be up to the next government of Iraq to examine the legal validity of the deals signed by the Saddam regime," says Cohen. "From a realpolitik point of view, these governments should try to get in early with the Iraqi National Congress and abandon Saddam. The window of opportunity is closing."
Bush family has always been all class.

In his first trip to the White House, he buttonholed President George Bush for a harangue on the inadvisability of war, and Bush reportedly said afterward, "Who is this chickenshit?"

Pundits who have a problem voting.
David E. sells all that needs to be said about Sully and racism here:

"There's the old-fashioned n-word bigotry, the kind that still sadly exists in many places, the kind that hovers in far milder forms in the psyches of many of us. Yes, you too, dear Salon reader. And then there's the second kind of smear, the notion that someone who has a different politics than many others of his or her race is somehow a traitor, a self-hater, an Uncle Tom."

There is, of course, a third -- the kind that puts Charles Murray on the cover of "The New Republic."


But, just in case you want more - Rittenhouse Review has it!
Brad DeLong demonstrates the typical disingenuousness of Republican politicians.
Joe Conason also written a nice tribute to Wellstone. (Some things shouldn't be premium, Salon. Jeebus.)

And, the Hamster is recommending we all show our respect to Wellstone by buying his book. It's currently up to 56 on Amazon's sales rank. He also has a full set of links to stories about Wellstone.

Friday, October 25, 2002

Senator Wellstone, his wife, and his daughter were killed in a plane crash today in Minnesota.

Nothing I can say, really.

Josh Marshall has some words that are worth reading.
What Oliver says.

A profiler was just on CNN saying basically, "look! we got it right! Disaffected ex-military guy, bit of a loser, pissed off."

This is pathetic.

CNN has become a joke.

CNN even asked CBS late last week if it would supply real actors — the ones who appear on the CBS prime-time series "Crime Scene Investigation" — to comment on the
case. CBS declined.

Thank God President Nixon Had the Courage

to bomb Liverpool?

That Liberal Media.

Throughout the day, it was clear that Mr. Bush's standard campaign speech had been fine-tuned, apparently to tone down criticism that he has occasionally stretched his facts in his enthusiasm to press his case.

Note this isn't an accurate description of criticism of Bush despite being dressed up that way - it's a defense of the criticism that he's a deliberate liar.

McBride has great campaign ad

Bill McBride, the Democratic nominee for governor, has bagged the biggest endorsement of his campaign: Republican Gov. Jeb Bush.

"He really is one of the great Floridians of our time," Bush says of McBride -- the same opponent the governor has been attacking as a "reckless corporate lawyer" in ads for months.

Bush's high praise, videotaped for an awards ceremony at McBride's former law firm in 1999, begins airing today statewide. The McBride campaign has made Bush's remarks the centerpiece of a new TV ad challenging the governor for running attack ads against McBride.

"Does Jeb Bush believe his own negative ads? " the McBride spot asks. "You be the judge."


"I know Bill from his leadership at Holland & Knight," Bush said in the interview taped for the awards ceremony. "Back when I was in the real world, we used the services of his law firm, and met him then. And almost in every civic endeavor with a statewide focus you'll see Bill McBride involved."

This year, Bush and the Republican Party of Florida have been selling a different image of McBride, accusing him of "reckless management" at Holland & Knight. The GOP this week also launched a ground-attack, mailers dispatched to targeted voters statewide slamming "Corporate lawyer Bill McBride: We can't trust him."

Kaus attacks Sullivan!

and I'm on...Andy's side?

Actually, Kaus attacks him for hypocrisy that he hasn't yet proven while I'd just attack him for being a total moron. Sullivan says:

There's a word for this: racial profiling. It's wrong in itself but it's simply astounding that this racist action by the police also resulted in the deaths of several more people. Why isn't this a scandal? The only reason the cops - not "everyone," in the weasel words of the "high-ranking police source" - were looking for a white guy was allegedly because only white guys are serial killers or snipers. First off, this is no excuse for racism. ...

In my view, any kind of racial profiling is always wrong. And if the cops had not been making reverse racist assumptions in this case, there's a chance a few more people would be alive today.

As Kaus points out, the police may have been looking for white people based on eyewitness reports. Or, despite the press reports, they may not have been looking for white people at all. They repeatedly refused to give out an offical description or composite sketch, so who really knows?

But, more to the point -- there's a big difference between using criminal profilers to attempt to track down a specific criminal and pre-emptive racial profiling which gives greater scrutiny to people of a particular race in order to stop unspecified crimes from happening in the first place.

Maybe Sullivan does take such a position, but it's certainly not in the mainstream of PC liberals like myself.

So, Kaus gets half a point for noticing that Sullivan says something stupid, but that's just shooting fish in a barrel. Minus a point for trying to drum up attention by accusing Sullivan of hypocrisy without really making the case. I have no doubt that Sullivan is a hypocrite on this, as he is on just about every other issue, but Mickey gets, like, PAID, for this stuff.

Sullivan 0, Kaus: -.5
(brought to my attention by Charles Murtaugh).

Updates: Public Nuisance has more on Sullivan's nonsense du jour.

and Neal Pollack reminds us that he'd predicted the precise details of the sniper outcome a week ago.

Thursday, October 24, 2002

As Smarter Andrew Sullivan notes, Andy is comparing himself to Orwell as he often does.

It inspired me to dig up this piece that MWO wrote way back when:

Andrew Sullivan says on his site today how much he adores Hitch. Andrew also says he loathes David Irving. Andrew says David Irving is a "looney rightist" with a mind warped into bile. But Hitchens says David Irving is a great historian. David Irving says Hitch is his friend. Andrew nominates the "repulsive" David as the English Gore Vidal. Gore Vidal nominated Hitch in Hitch's new book as the English Gore Vidal. John Banville said Hitch shouldn't be Vidal and nominated him to be Orwell. But Andrew nominated himself to be Orwell. Hitchens loves Freepers and hates Clinton. Freepers hate Clinton and love Hitchens, Andrew, and Timothy McVeigh. Gore Vidal loves Timothy McVeigh.

This is rather odd.


Watching Crossfire tonight my husband pointed out words scrolling down , north to south, on the TV screen that seemed to be in the subliminal category: Republic Democratic Bleeding Heart. Over and over. There were, in addition, words going east to west, but on our small
screen we could not make them out.

What do you make of this?

Robin Loucks

Indeed, "Democrat Bleeding Heart" scrolled in the background for approximately 25 minutes on Thursday's CNN Crossfire broadcast. It could mean a Media Graphicist-Whore has infiltrated the network.

(from MWO, which has a picture if you scroll down.)
Wife of Fla. Bomb Plotter Arrested

Kristi Goldstein, 28, shared Dr. Robert Goldstein's fascination with building bombs and knew about his plans to blow up an Islamic education and cultural center in St. Petersburg, federal prosecutors said. She has denied knowledge of the plot.

Kristi Goldstein was charged with illegal possession of destructive devices a day after another alleged accomplice, Dr. Michael Hardee, agreed to plead guilty to federal charges and cooperate with prosecutors.

Kristi Goldstein was released on $100,000 bond.

Court documents released Thursday allege she stood by as her husband filled their house with weapons and explosives and talked for at least four months about bombing Muslims.

The article goes on to describe her husband as being Jewish, although previous news reports had stated he was a convert to Christianity.
Charles Murtaugh has an interesting post up in response to a TNR review of a book about 18th century American sexual morality.

Nostalgia for the straight and narrow morality of ages past is literally always misplaced. Whether one is looking back to the 1950s, 1850s, or beyond, one is shocked to find out that people were still having sex before and after marriage and occasionally even enjoying it. I'm too lazy to find the statistics right now, but I seem to remember the illegitimate birth rates in 19th century Italy were shocking compared to today's lowly numbers.

Sears Roebuck sold vibrators through its catalogs as late as 1918.

Even our modern religious conservatives weren't always prudes. Tim LaHaye, of more recent 'Left Behind' fame, began his celebrity status with a sex manual for good married christians in 1976. It offered more than just the missionary position.

Even homosexuality isn't a recent invention. Hard to believe, I know.

I could go on. But, the false nostalgia of cultural conservatives for a time that never was would be kinda cute if they weren't so set on sending us all back to that imagined time.

Jody has related thoughts.
Digby says (to Moe in comments):

There is simply no comparison between the machinations of the Mighty Wurlitzer and the "left" which you characterize as behaving thus:

"large swathes of your faction have spent the last two years accusing the Bush Administration of every sin and depravity known to man (except, I believe, the carnal knowledge of sheep)... "

Surely you realize that bloggers and message board posters are hardly the equivalent of the congressional committee hearings, Independent Counsel investigations, NY Times front page stories or the 24/7 cable news and talk radio Clinton character assassination that characterized the 90's. There was David Bossie's "Citizens'United" that spoon fed bogus Whitewater information to the mainstream press, RNC manufactured phony outrage, congressional investigator leaks of lies and innuendo, Scaife financed smears, coordination of Paula Jones lawyers and Ken Starr with attendant grand jury leaks and an entire network of paid operatives devoted to making the drumbeat of Clinton harrassment loud and constant. And this was conceived and/or carried out by mainstream Republicans in the congress and the RNC with the willing help of a lazy compliant DC press corp. The fringe groups like Fallwell were only a small cog in the machine.

The only thing that got us through that period was the belief that by changing the rules to a looser tabloid standard that one day the press would be honor bound to give the same kind of coverage to the other side. What we didn't realize was that the media are so lacking in professional ability much less integrity that they feel absolutely no obligation to maintain any kind of consistency or fairness but even if they did, they no longer have the skills to critically evaluate politicians and uncover illegal or unethical behavior unless the opposition provides it to them in easy to digest, delicious little servings.

Now we know. Fool us once shame on...won't get fooled again.

As Instapundit would say, 'indeed.'

I actually give the Bush folks credit for honesty in this hilariously stupid Flash ad.

It says:

"No changes in benefits for those at our near retirement."

Which is more honest than most advocates of privatization choice whatever they're calling it this week.

(via Hesiod)

Even Ken Starr doesn't defend Bush v. Gore...

That leaves only Richard Posner I think. I *love* whenever I get to hear his hilarious attempts to defend that steaming pile of poop.

Richard Posner and the entire punditocracy, I should have said.
One of Andrew Sullivan's favorite little tricks is to publish emails from anonymous "economists" which always sound something like this:

I used to really admire Paul Krugman but he's really gone downhill since he joined the New York Times. He just isn't as rigorous in his thinking as he used to be, and he's starting to embarass his colleagues.

He's done it again today and Brad DeLong has a few things to say about it.

The Mighty Wurlitzer Wheezes Along

The Washington Post does it again

Last week, The Washington Post reported a series of comments made by [Bishop Victor] Curry just prior to Bill McBride appearing on his morning radio program.

According to The Post story:

Curry charged on the air that the Bush family and the bin Laden family are business "partners" seeking to profit from war. "These people are on a neo-Nazi, right-wing mission the American people," he continued, adding that the Bush administration is a "godless, wicked regime."

The Post story has haunted McBride ever since, and became a point of rancor during Tuesday night's gubernatorial debate.

So what really happened?

Curry's station, WMBM-AM (1490), provided me a recording of his show. While the quotes attributed to Curry are largely, although not entirely, correct, what's missing is the context.

...Curry charged that President Bush is moving toward a war with Iraq to divert attention from the souring economy. One of the other guests questioned the cozy history between the bin Laden and Bush families.

"They're partners in the Carlyle Group," Curry noted. "The bin Laden family and the Bush family, they were in a group called the Carlyle Group that manufactures defense weapons. They work together."

Curry even made reference to several newspaper stories.

And ultimately, he's more right than wrong.

The "neo-Nazi" comment came several minutes later. Earlier, Curry and the group had been talking about the erosion of civil rights under the Homeland Security measures proposed by the White House. A caller said he didn't trust Bush, and Curry's exact statement was:

"This regime does not care about the American public. That's what I've been saying, that the Bush administration, all the way down to Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell and Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld and John Ashcroft, these people are on a mission. They are on a neo-Nazi, right-wing mission. They do not mean this country good. And I keep telling you all somebody is going to wake up. Black people are going to wake up. White people are going to wake up. Hispanics are going to wake up. America is going to wake up and they are going to rebel against this ungodly, wicked regime."

Soon thereafter, McBride entered the studio and the conversation turned rather banal.

There is no doubt, Curry's statements are strong. And I don't agree with everything Curry said. But I don't think they are anti-Semitic, as some people charged. And I don't believe -- when taken in context -- they were particularly outrageous either.

The Post story makes them seem worse than they are. And Jeb Bush has been able to make political hay out of it, demonizing Curry in the process.

Jesus, compared to what comes out of RushLiddySavage on a daily basis this is baby stuff. And, Timmy-Boy dutifully badgered McBride about this.
Adam Felber reminds us that in light of recent developments, New Yorkers should beware of Steve Dunleavy's ass.

Don't let him continue Jebbing up Florida..

My Polish correspondent has just informed me that that the word 'jeb' in Polish is the imperative singular form of the verb 'to fuck.'

Must be worth a few giggles if you're Polish and travelling through Florida seeing JEB! JEB! JEB! everywhere..

Jim Henley surveys all the possible sniper outcomes. Very good read.

TAPPED also has a post about the campaign of voter intimidation the Reublicans, along with the Ashcroft Justice department, are embarking on. It is clear to me that these repeated examples of Republicans squealing about 'massive vote fraud' episodes which after investigation turn out to be essentially nothing are just the way to cover up the more egregious acts of genuine election fraud that are currently in the works. The electronic voting systems that have been pushed as the solution are easily rigged in a variety of ways, including simply resetting them and not bothering to tally their votes. There is no paper trail and no way to audit the results or 'recount.' Election fraud is nothing new, so we shouldn't be surprised that it happens, but we should be outraged that right now it can happen at historically unseen levels and there is very little that can be done about it.

I'm not sure where TAPPED got their number of 8,000. The true number of "felons" who Katherine Harris ordered to be scrubbed from the voter lists was 57,700. Some of these 'felons', like Thomas Alvin Cooper, were scheduled to be convicted of their crimes at a future date. The majority* of them were either not felons, or had been convicted for their crimes in other states and were therefore not legally ineligible to vote in Florida.

The media gave them a pass on this the first time. It was reported by Greg Palast in the BBC and in the London Observer in November, 2000, but as far as I know was not reported in any mainstream U.S. media outlet until February, 2001 or later, and was buried by CBS specifically. And, now, with the Republicans screaming 'Democrat voter fraud' over nothing across the 50 states the stage is set for another massive criminal disenfrachisement enterprise that our media will ignore again while focusing ridiculous non-stories about things like voter rolls with dead people (After people die, their first act is not to call the local election board).

You know, I've never read the Instapundit-approved book "More Guns, Less Crime," but I can say that the author's analysis of voter discrimination in Florida is the most transparently deliberately fraudulent piece of 'research' I have read in my life. So, I'll just conclude that I don't have to.

UPDATE: still trying to find basis for use of the word 'majority' above, so you may replace with 'at minimum 8,000' which is the number of false matches on names but does not include people scrubbed for felonies committed in other states.

Rifle found in car.

This may be it then.
Matthew Yglesias says Everyone's Right!

Military Creating Terrorists!!

Just another way to spin this given what we know.

Anyone know what happened to the Hispanic male who had rented the house in Tacoma? Fox was warning us about him all day yesterday...
Tapped points us to this story on how the Bush clan has turned the entire government into its campaign operation.

Another one for the "if this were Clinton" files.

Lucianne (Kaus approved!) posters weigh in on the latest news:

Reply 4 - Posted by: de danann, 10/24/2002 6:13:01 AM

backlash?? how about Democratic Senatorial heads on pikes lining the Beltway-- starting w/ mr 'dasch the homeland security bill to bits'


Reply 21 - Posted by: acidkibitzer, 10/24/2002 7:21:41 AM

AP Update:

Steven Spielberg will direct the move about the two suspects to be tentatively entitled: "Ducks in a Moose-Noose", starring Denzell Washington as the
sniper and Alec Baldwin as his stepson. Janet Reno will appear in a cameo role as Johnny Cochran, their attorney.


Reply 49 - Posted by: MMC, 10/24/2002 8:25:57 AM

Military tribunal would work for me. These two acted as terrorists! Hanging is another solution.


Reply 50 - Posted by: sagman, 10/24/2002 8:26:34 AM

I can hear Johnnie Cochran already: ''If the sniper's black, cut him some slack.''


Reply 52 - Posted by: kedd, 10/24/2002 8:30:56 AM

This has to be a nightmare for the PC crowd. They are black, they are Muslim and they might be gay. Ed Asner call your office.


Reply 56 - Posted by: formerfeminazi, 10/24/2002 8:33:36 AM

I want apologies today from every liberal black activist for profiling this as a white guy/NRA gunnut.


Reply 63 - Posted by: Mr. Know-It-All, 10/24/2002 8:41:56 AM

Give them a fair trial with an impartial jury, and then HANG 'EM!!


Reply 69 - Posted by: gafling, 10/24/2002 8:47:45 AM

You folks demanding the quick death of the two alledged perps are letting them off far too easy.

After conviction, they should each be castrated including penis removal, sentenced to life in prison with a a large, HIV & STD infected cell-mate, denied
medical treatment, and their final paunful, agonizing days documented on tape. This tape will be distributed around the muslim community both here
and abroad.

The final scene on the tape should show excerpts from the Hiroshima aftermath and should then ask which way they want to go.

Remember, (and I quote) "...the only difference between a moderate muslim and a radical muslim is the length of his beard."

Drudge has a big headline 'Not the same Gun.'

There's definitely something that doesn't add up in this. Obviously that feeling partially arises from the fact that the cops aren't sharing all the info. However, the backstory of these two guys combined with how they were found/arrested just doesn't fit with what seems to be the tone of communications between the sniper and the police.

But, anyway, we will see...

Ooops - Drudge just took that headline down and replaced it with this story which says a gun wasn't found in the car.

I'm starting to think these two guys could have been set up. But, hey, we're in the realm of pure speculation at this point.

But, in any case let me round up a few of the more sensible posts on this:

From Max:

ISLAM! ISLAM! ISLAM! Just thought I would get into the act too. Note to the clueless: just because I change my name to Joe Islam doesn't mean I'm part of a worldwide terrorist conspiracy. Further note: "leaderless resistance" refers to decentralized operatives who have first been organized to perform certain tasks after dispersal. It does not refer to any dude who takes it into his deranged head to emulate something he saw on television. Question: is there any event you would not exploit for the sake of harping on your theme of a worldwide war on Islam?

from Unqualified Offerings:

The ironic thing about the case is that, to whatever extent Islam-inspired anti-Americanism turns out to have fueled Muhammad's spree, it still doesn't seem like settling early on the "terrorist theory" would have helped catch him. Everyone wanted the police out there looking for foreign sleeper agents with "olive skin" and "broken english." But Muhammad is as American as I am. Call him, with reservations, "the black Tim McVeigh."

and Sterling:

If you're going to use the term Islamofascist, wouldn't it be best if you use it on someone who actually fits the term Fascist? That he favors the destruction of the democracy [this one] and prefers a nation with a centralized dictatorial control or a Islamic religious revolution? Or am I forever banned from the blarghers club?

More updates. Sterling says:

Is this turning into a Richmond?
Montgomery, Alabama police just concluded a press conference where they shot down speculation about a robbery, or a theft of credit cards down there. The speculation had been that our ransomer wanted to transfer $10 million to a credit card. They didn't even want to talk about if there was a letter with Malvo's prints, which would seem to be a smoking gun on this. Things are getting odd here.

And also, from comments:

[T]he "duck in a noose" bit is a reference to an old Cherokee story, where a rabbit believes he has caught a duck in a noose for dinner, but the duck escapes and the rabbit starves.

Doesn't this Fox Headline scare anyone?

Crackdown on Turncoats
Bill aims to revoke citizenship for betraying the homeland
From their front page.

Here's the story.

Leaving aside the merits of the idea itself, what is up with all of this 'homeland' talk? My god...
All sounds weird, but I don't think this sniper story is over yet.

Anyway, Unqualified Offerings has the most comprehensive and level-headed agendaless analysis out there.

Wednesday, October 23, 2002

In tales of the slightly weird..

Podesta joins with Scifi channel to push gov. to release UFO info.

Hard to decipher all of this, but apparently the police are searching for one John Allen Williams, a.k.a. Mohammad Williams, and one John Lee Malvo in connection with the D.C. sniper incidents.

Reports coming in through various sources that Malvo is young (high school?) and Williams is ex-military.

Malvo is a citizen of Jamaica. Stepson of Williams (?)

Williams is a gulf war vet.

Chief Moose says Williams may not be the sniper, but may know him.
Hey, the nice folks at pyra fixed my problem, so we're back home to this link now. Thanks to all who pointed people to the temporary site.
There are no shortage of warbloggers who should be ready to step up and claim their prize in Tbogg's challenge.

What Chechens have to do with Saddam Hussein I'll never know...

Buncha other good stuff from Tbogg, as usual, so stick around once you click.

Rehnquist Continues to Inspire

I wonder if he's giving workshops on this.

In a press release, Michael Cook, executive directorbfor the Democratic Party of Arkansas, criticized Sen. Tim Hutchinson and the Republican Party forbintimidating and harassing African-American votersbin Jefferson County and for giving the poll watchers notarized credentials he said were apparently forged.

"Their papers did not seem to be in order," Ashcraft said.

"Tim Hutchinson and the Republican Party have claimed that they want to reach out to African-American voters, but when election time comes they have nothing to offer but intimidation and harassment," Cook said. "We ask Tim Hutchinson and his party to stop disenfranchising African-American voters and obstructing the democratic process."

During Monday's voting, poll watchers were seen asking voters to either produce identification or risk having their ballots challenged.

"A voter does not have to show an ID as long as it's noted on the ballot," Secretary of State Sharon Priest said. "They (poll watchers) can challenge a ballot, but they cannot ask for an ID or even talk to the voters."

Several voters received pointed requests from poll watcher Allison Johnson to produce identification, and refused - a right, Priest said, that is protected by law.

Voter Bonita McCray also refused the ID request, saying "When she insisted, I put my ID back in my purse. They had no right to do this."

Officials in the clerk's office said several would-be voters became so frustrated and offended by the process that they left without casting a vote. Deputy Clerk Charlotte Munson reported a poll watcher had actually walked behind her counter to photograph voter information on her computer screen.

The watcher, she said, also asked for identification from, and then photographed, a first-time voter who was visibly shaken by the action.

"This woman (a poll watcher) was looking over my shoulder, and this is my business, not hers," the agitated voter said later.

Poll watcher Chris Carnahan admitted a colleague had been using photography to document aspects of the voting process, but said he did advise the person to put away the camera.

"We're here to ensure a clean and fair election," he said.

Johnson also accused a deputy clerk of not requesting IDs from prospective voters and said workers had no challenge ballots prepared.

"They refused to accept challenge ballots," Johnson said.

Ashcraft said this was not true. He was unable to say exactly how many ballots were challenged, but said there had been "several."

Ashcraft said he was disappointed in the Republican "Gestapo" tactics.

"They're trying to intimidate and prevent voters from participating in the Democratic process," Ashcraft said. "The registered voters feel insecure and the photos are inexcusable. They (Republicans) know they can't win, so they're trying to steal this election. This is politics at its worst. They're breaking the law and it's disgusting."
Hey, Charles Pierce subs for Bruce Springsteen's stalker over at Altercation.

It will be a chuckle, though, to watch them demand that the International Criminal Court put Hussein on trial. It will also occasion a spate of punditry not dissimilar to that which erupted after the Reagan Inaugural in 1980 — when the Safirettes all determined that the Iranians released the American hostages because they were terrified of what Reagan might do. What he did, of course, was bribe the daylights out of them with their own money
Neal Pollack found guilty in France of "inciting racial hatred through pretentious writing."
Poll Katz has lots of great presidential poll information. But, I think this one in particular should be put on the desk of every journalist discussing Bush's historically high poll numbers.

His approval ratings are still decent - one cannot deny that - but they aren't exactly off the chart.


Hitch gets really snippy when you pick on his hygeine.
William Burton has a lot of posts up about North Korea. Not sure I agree with everything he says, but the basic point that letting junior get his hands on some nukes is Seriously Seriously Bad because he is the nutcase, or 'irrational actor' that people keep calling Hussein, is right on.

The rather unlikely event of Hussein getting nukes frankly doesn't scare me all that much - not much more than Pakistan and India having nukes does.* Junior having nukes scares the hell out of me.

*Note I'm not comparing the leadership and/or people of any of these countries directly. Just thinking about the likelihood that said countries actually start using their nukes.
Poll shows McBride ahead.

He's right on schedule to benefit from the momentum. Let's hope.

Voting Machines are a Disaster

Tried to warn ya..
Neptune World reviews the McBride/Jeb debate.
Talk Left tells us that 7 Guantanamo prisoners are being released:

The seven are Pakistanis whom the Government has identified as neither being terrorists nor able to provide any intelligence information. They are the first prisoners the U.S. has agreed to release since January when it opened the prison camp in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Charles Dodgson has the energy scam update.
From the mind of the author of the anti-idiotarian manifesto.
PLA details Bush lies.

Anil Dash has a long post detailing his recent saga with MSNBC and Little Green Footballs.

UPDATE: to be clear, he had absolutely nothing to do with MSNBC.

Tuesday, October 22, 2002

Rackjite sez:

The Bush Administration's stance on Iraq is reminiscent of Adolf Hitler using foreign policy to hide his domestic woes." German Justice Minister Herta Daeubler-Gmelin.

"Right out of Nazi Germany." Republican Senator Phil Gramm on Democrats who suggested a capital gains tax on Americans who renounce their citizenship to avoid paying income taxes.

"I am sure voters will get their fill of statistics claiming that the Bush tax cut hands out 40 percent of its benefits to the top 1 percent of taxpayers. This is not merely misleading, it is outright false. Some folks must be under the impression that as long as something is repeated often enough, it will become true. That was how Adolf Hitler got to the top." Republican Senator Charles Grassley.

Gramm and Grassley both admit to their words as they are in the congressional record. The German Justice Minister adamantly denies what she said, it was not recorded and only one reporter from one newspaper heard it.

Nonetheless, we heard the quote by Herta Daeubler-Gmelin across the entire media for over a week. It "poisoned" our foreign policy, it turned George Bush's head purple, Rumesfeld broke his wrist, Prime Minister Schroeder was forced to have her fired, and just today Henry Kissinger referred to her dastardly statement in a column syndicated around the world.

What was the outcome of two Republican Senators doing the very same thing though directed at Democrats rather than Republicans? Was the Senate poisoned? Were the Senators forced to apologize to the world? Were their resignations on Bush's desk the next morning? Were they even sorry? Did the media plaster it across the world for a week? Of course not, only a very few who read a Paul Krugman column a few weeks ago even noticed.

The reason these same sentiments are treated so differently by the media is really quite simple. President Bush, in political trouble at home, has changed hundreds of years of American foreign policy to initiate preemptive wars against other nations. In such a time the last
thing our intelligent American public needs to hear is some bimbo in Germany telling us the truth. While on the other hand, Democrats speaking the truth about George W. Bush's regressive tax policies or advocating capital gain taxes on American traitors, requires all real Americans to call them Nazis. Liberal Bias Media MY ASS.

24 Reasons to Vote for Bill McBride

It's really only one big reason: JEB.

Good news.

ALBANY, Oct. 22 — The Republican-led New York State Senate will vote for the first time on landmark gay-rights legislation in December after having blocked its passage for decades, the Senate leader said today. The decision makes it likely that the bill will become law and hands Gov. George E. Pataki a vital victory two weeks from Election Day to help him win over gay and lesbian voters.


"This is the breakthrough we have been fighting for for 31 years," he said. First introduced in 1971, the bill would add two words — sexual orientation — to an existing human rights law banning discrimination in housing, credit, education or employment on the basis of age, race, religion, color, national origin, sex, disability or marital status. It has some limited exceptions to accommodate religious practices. Twelve other states have similar laws, as do New York City and 17 other county and local governments around the state.

I'm sure the police have an inkling of the sniper's motive by now, given his apparently lengthy manifesto.

How dumb does Newsmax think black voters are?

From their email list (sent in by b.w.):

Dear Friend:


I'm raising money from libertarians and conservatives across America, in order to pull off a political ploy that could help boot out a vulnerable liberal Democrat Senator, and take control away from the liberals that are now in charge.

We're going to get Democrats to vote AGAINST a Democrat.


Here's what we plan to do, with your help: Among African-American voters, 76% support Cleland, as opposed to 6% for Chambliss. However, 17% of black voters remain undecided, which, according to J. Bradford Coker of Mason-Dixon Polling & Research, "indicates that a strong 'get-out-the-vote' effort in the black community" for either candidate could decide the election.

We're going to get a sizeable percentage of Black Democrats -- the ones most likely to vote -- to vote AGAINST the Democrat incumbent, and FOR the Libertarian candidate.

These are voters that we don't stand a snowball's chance in Hades of convincing to ever vote for a Republican. But these are also voters who are passionate about one issue that Democrats are on the wrong side of: education choice, like vouchers and tuition tax credits.

Using the issue of education choice, we can get them to vote AGAINST the Democrat, Sen. Cleland, and FOR the Libertarian, Sandy Thomas... with the same result as we got in 1992:


Haha, Dr. Limerick picks up a real Howler from Condi.

The president put it very well when he said there may be many modalities, but there's only one morality.

What do you think he *really* said?

MWO has a press release up about the just released book and forthcoming tour of the author of Get Your War On. The royalties go to Adopt-a-Minefield, which sounds like a worthy cause. So, go buy the book.
What do you all think? Should I sign the anti-idiotarian manifesto?

Andrew Sullivan joins Moonie Times

Reed Irvine Not Happy.

Oh. My. God.

When Fox News correspondent Rita Cosby decided to approach "Son of Sam" killer David Berkowitz, she didn't exactly treat him like a despicable mass murderer.

"Your personal story and spiritual growth inspired me to write to you," Cosby told Berkowitz in a letter. Sometimes, she wrote, "the Lord calls on individuals at various times to serve him and serve his people. . . . I believe as a Christian your help is a great service. . . .

"You have a testimony that must be heard. . . . Our world is crying and you can help."

Berkowitz, who killed six people and wounded seven in the mid-1970s in New York, responded with a three-page letter about the Washington sniper after receiving Cosby's note Wednesday.. He thanked her "for the kind things you said."

Cosby defended her effort yesterday, saying: "I didn't say, 'Hey, you're a terrific guy, I think you're wonderful.' I touched on the fact that he says he's now a Christian and that this is an opportunity to do something positive."

In her Fox reports about the exchange, Cosby said, she repeatedly pointed out Berkowitz's criminal record. "I don't think there was anything wrong in appealing to his Christian instincts. I don't think that in any way we glorified him."

Charles Pierce says all that needs to be said:

From CHARLES PIERCE: Speaking on behalf of my own little piece of Our Crying World, I can assure Rita Cosby that my immediate reaction to the news of another Beltway ambush was not (and likely never will ), "Geez, I wonder what the Son of Sam is thinking about all of this?" And, speaking on behalf of my own little piece of Our Crying World, I can further assure her that my immediate reaction to the ensuing ratings bonanza was not (and likely never will be), "You know, what we need here is input from a guy who once took his bloody marching orders from the neighbor's dog." And, finally, speaking on behalf of my own little piece of Christianity, I can assure her that, of all the misuses of His gospel that He's seen since He gave up and went home, even The Founder couldn't have dreamed that He'd be used as cover for a tabloid clown act.

Hesiod Notes that Pitt lies too

Though not about blowjobs so it's okay.

Self Made Pundit on 'those giddy Republicans'

That was then....

And this is now.

PARIS (AP) - It sounds like political suicide: alienate your most powerful ally, risk looking soft against an aggressive dictator, argue for bureaucratic deliberation over decisive action.

But French President Jacques Chirac's strident stand against a unilateral U.S. strike to topple the Iraqi government is making strong progress internationally - and winning Chirac points at home.

Paris' policy, backed by fellow permanent U.N. Security Council members Russia and China, has had an impact in Washington. A revised U.S. proposal ensures there will be "consequences" if Iraq fails to comply with weapons inspectors, but stops short of directly calling for military action.

Dana Milbank On Bush Lies.

President Bush, speaking to the nation this month about the need to challenge Saddam Hussein, warned that Iraq has a growing fleet of unmanned aircraft that could be used "for missions targeting the United States."

Last month, asked if there were new and conclusive evidence of Hussein's nuclear weapons capabilities, Bush cited a report by the International Atomic Energy Agency saying the Iraqis were "six months away from developing a weapon." And last week, the president said objections by a labor union to having customs officials wear radiation detectors has the potential to delay the policy "for a long period of time."

All three assertions were powerful arguments for the actions Bush sought. And all three statements were dubious, if not wrong. Further information revealed that the aircraft lack the range to reach the United States; there was no such report by the IAEA; and the customs dispute over the detectors was resolved long ago.

As Bush leads the nation toward a confrontation with Iraq and his party into battle in midterm elections, his rhetoric has taken some flights of fancy in recent weeks. Statements on subjects ranging from the economy to Iraq suggest that a president who won election underscoring Al Gore's knack for distortions and exaggerations has been guilty of a few himself.

Presidential embroidery is, of course, a hoary tradition. Ronald Reagan was known for his apocryphal story about liberating a concentration camp. Bill Clinton fibbed famously and under oath about his personal indiscretions to keep a step ahead of Whitewater prosecutors. Richard M. Nixon had his Watergate denials, and Lyndon B. Johnson was often accused of stretching the truth to put the best face on the Vietnam War. Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy, too, played with the truth during the Gary Powers and Bay of Pigs episodes.

"Everybody makes mistakes when they open their mouths and we forgive them," Brookings Institution scholar Stephen Hess said. Some of Bush's overstatements appear to be off-the-cuff mistakes. But, Hess said, "what worries me about some of these is they appear to be with foresight. This is about public policy in its grandest sense, about potential wars and who is our enemy, and a president has a special obligation to getting it right."

Well, it isn't as if it is blowjobs or anything like that.

When did Howell Raines take over the Post, too?

Monday, October 21, 2002

Whoever came here looking for "Daryn Kagan spank" I hope one day you live out your dream.

Early Warning? To Whom?

Kaus reports that early voting numbers for democrats in Texas are high.

I think in giving it the title of "Early Warning" Kaus shows he knows who his readers are.

Republicans Love Absentee Ballots

The state Republican Party is being aggressive in getting out the absentee vote with a postcard campaign. The Democrats say they didn't do the same thing because they were advised it wasn't legal.


Nearly 1,400 requests for paper ballots came after the Tennessee Republican Party sent postcards to senior citizens informing them how to apply for an absentee ballot.

Will Pinkston, a spokesman for the Democrats' Victory 2002 campaign, said his party was advised it would be breaking the law "to solicit anyone to vote absentee. It's a misdemeanor." The Republicans don't consider the postcards a solicitation.

Seeing the Forest has a bunch of interesting stuff up and the Poor Man gives his take on Little Green Footballs, a site I once linked to as well.

Blacks Hit By Voting Problems

I'm shocked, I tell you.

Black voters were disenfranchised more than others by snafus when Florida's Miami-Dade County introduced electronic voting equipment for the Sept. 10 primary, the American Civil Liberties Union said on Monday.

The ACLU released a report on Monday about polling problems in Miami-Dade, which was also one of several counties hit by controversy in 2000. It said that as in 2000, September's voting problems hit blacks worse than other voters.

The organization said an examination of 31 problem precincts revealed at least 1,544 "lost" votes, about half of which were from blacks.

"Not only are there a significant number of missing votes, but there's also an alarming racial disparity in the errors that occurred during the last election," said JoNel Newman, an ACLU attorney leading the ACLU's voting probe.
The D.C. area police running the sniper investigation aren't revealing much. They probably have good reasons - but I'm guessing there's another one. They probably *really* screwed up with this little stunt today. It sounds like they were trying to play nice with the sniper and then pounce on him. They pounced too early.
Agenda Bender gets his digs in at homophobic me.

He makes one good point:

"Atrios defended his repost of the witless scurrilities from Datalounge by suggesting it can't really be homophobia since it's homos making the jokes. Ignoring the timeless truth that insults repeated are owned in their entirety by those who repeat them"

Fair enough.

But the rest of it ignores the reality of Sullivan and his detractors.

First of all, the charges of hypocrisy against Sullivan have nothing to do with his being a "gay Uncle Tom." Sullivan is charged with hypocrisy because he's, well, a hypocrite. In his earlier incarnation, before he restyled himself as Joe McCarthy for the new century, part of his schtick was chastising participants in certain elements of gay (sub)culture, including but not limited to promiscuity. He's a hypocrite for embracing a lifestyle (and getting caught) that he had wasted no small amount of ink condemning. To claim this:

To hold Sullivan up as an exemplar of sexual hypocrisy is so thoroughly perverse given Sullivan's record of honesty about both his sexuality and his HIV status that only the truly clueless can indulge in it.

requires a rather selective reading of the collected works of Andy. I think many would take issue with the characterization of him having a 'record of honesty' on either his sexuality or his HIV status.

Which brings is to the next point. As Sully Watch points out, Sullivan is quite the bully. His blog is filled with incredibly mean-spirited attacks on a multitude of people. He's accused practically everyone to the left of Rush Limbaugh of being terrorist sympathizers, so it's silly to be despaired by the fact that people get a little mean-spirited back, whatever their motive. Andy has accused my "ilk" of wishing death on Americans and supporting the abuses of brutal oppressive regimes, quite seriously. Because of this, when someone hyperbolically accuses Andy of, for example, wishing death on all Africans due to his support for the pharmaceutical industry's drug pricing policies, I don't think he can cry fowl.

As for the accusation of there being too much of a focus on Andrew's sexuality - well, as far as I can remember I rarely focus on Andrew's sex life so this is also an unfair charge. As Pandagon has pointed out, Andy's sexuality is a part of his political persona, so it can't be claimed that it is completely off limits. More importantly, however, although the list of book titles in question does make an issue of his sexuality, it was a direct response to Sullivan's own focus on someone's sex life. Turnabout is fair play, no? I have said a number of times that if Sullivan hadn't just written a column about hypothetical future Clinton sex scandals, I probably would've been on the side of those who thought that the whole "bareback" scandal was nothing more than malicious gossip. But, his own focus on the sex life of others - both within the gay community and of course his pathological obsession with Clinton's sex life - fairly leaves him open to the charge of hypocrisy. The protestations of Joan Walsh not withstanding, this is something from which moralizing pundits should not be exempt.

As for what was perhaps the "worst" book title that Agenda Bender highlights (leaving aside the silly misspelling issue - it's a typo!) :

Homosexuals are HIV spreading perverts, and I'm living proof. By Andy Sullivan

This is cruel, no doubt, but it is clearly a (very harsh) parody of Andy's writings and worldview, as described best by SullyWatch here:

"We’re all making fun of him because, after writing a book or two about the commendable position that marriage and monogamous relationships were what gays should aspire to have, and looking scornfully upon the culture of promiscuity, he turned out to be indulging in it somewhat less than privately (his protestations to the contrary).

Cruel? Sure. But so is Andy.

No war after all?

So confusing....

Two top Bush administration officials said yesterday that America would accept the continuation of Saddam Hussein's regime if Iraq disarms, apparently backing away from the official U.S. policy of seeking the ouster of the dictator.

Secretary of State Colin L. Powell and National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice said in television interviews yesterday that a disarmed Saddam could remain in power, and Mr. Powell said that is now President Bush's position.

(via Max)

Well, the poor hapless 'snipers' are being turned over to INS.

Bet they're wishing they stayed in bed today....

I'll Bring the Crow...

Joe Conason wonders why no one ever 'Fisks' William Safire.

Well, sort of:

Oct. 21, 2002 | Black feathers on Bill's menu
William Safire, who wrote in September 1998 that he would have to eat crow if his predictions about imminent indictments in Whitewater, Travelgate and Filegate proved false, may now have to take seconds of that unwholesome bird. (And he still hasn't taken a bite of that first moldy carcass.)

Today on the front page of the newspaper that publishes Safire, James Risen shoots down a major story that Safire has been flogging for the past year to implicate Iraq in the September 11 attacks. Specifically, Safire has insisted in seven columns that terrorist ringleader Mohammad Atta met with an Iraqi spy under diplomatic cover in Prague. Those columns, at least, were based on stories emanating from the Czech and American governments. But Safire went much further, repeatedly accusing the CIA and others of consciously trying to cover up evidence of Iraq's cooperation with al-Qaida. Now we know that Czech president Vaclav Havel says there is no reliable evidence to bolster those charges.

Safire is never corrected and rarely corrects himself – no matter how outrageous or absurd his assertions turn out to be. Writing about sensitive, highly disputatious topics, he scorns careful qualifiers such as "reportedly" and "alleged." In addition to his predictions about the indictment of Hillary Clinton, which blew up in his face like a trick cigar, he falsely implicated Clinton aides Bruce Lindsey and Sidney Blumenthal in criminal conspiracies. Does anybody know why Safire remains exempt from the standards that govern his colleagues?

Sniper update now looking like guys in wrong place at wrong time.
Michael Tomasky, subbing for Alterman, has some interesting points today.

. Don’t trust the Washington media priests’ pronouncements about what “the people” think. The priests spend a lot more time talking to one another than they do talking to “the people,” so they basically have no idea what people think. You’ll recall that virtually every prediction out of Washington before the 1998 by-elections was that “the people” were going to punish the Democrats because Clinton had infuriated them by slipping out of the grasp of the morals police. Democrats won those elections, Newt Gingrich was forced from office, and Bill Clinton left the White House on his own schedule, with higher approval ratings than George W. Bush enjoys right now in many polls.

The Washington media caricature people on both sides — conservatives live in a small town in the heartland and teach Bible study; liberals spend their Sunday mornings in coffee houses in Berkeley or Burlington, Vermont. That’s a mistake, but the media make another one that’s even more crucial: They believe that their concerns are the people’s concerns. So they behold an America obsessed with Saddam Hussein and the sniper in their midst. Their recent track record all but guarantees us that Americans’ thoughts are elsewhere.

Guys in Custody Probably not Sniper

(CBS) Law enforcement officials believe the sniper who has terrorized the Washington D.C. area is still at large, CBS News Correspondent Jim Stewart reports.

Stewart said the officials "feel confident" that neither of two men being questioned in connection with the shootings is the sniper. The men in custody after the seizure of a Plymouth van at a gas station in Richmond, Va., Monday are believed to have made a call to a phone number connected to the sniper case, but they are not thought to be the perpetrators.

Stewart reports that some law enforcement officials speculated that the men may have been involved in some type of extortion scheme related to the sniper murders or some other kind of hoax.

CNN is in 24/7 sniper mode. Since there's no news about the two guys they arrested, they've been showing the press conference with one of the still alive victim's doctors.

It isn't as if there's an election in 2 weeks, or a war looming, or...

The Dowd column that has Rush throwing a hissy fit was no different in tone or degree than 50 columns she's written about the Clintons, Monica, and Al Gore.

It says a lot that it's taken her this long to, well, be mean to the boy emperor.
TAPPED says (regarding Bush spinning the press on his likely farcical generic drug plan):

Bill Clinton was pretty good at this sort of thing. The Bush administration may be even better.

Actually, the Bush administration doesn't even have to try. Clinton faced a skeptical press.

Toughest problems since Lincoln?

"The fact is he is wrestling with problems probably as tough as any president has wrestled with since Lincoln," Bush said in headlining a fund-raising dinner for U.S. Rep. Greg Ganske's bid for the U.S. Senate.

Hope Poppy doesn't know something we don't.

Swat team has surrounded phone booth in VA.

Man in custody.

Second man in custody.

One described by witness as "possibly hispanic."

WTOP Breaking news - shooting in Opal, VA, routes 17 and 29 near Warrenton. Apparently involving a police officer, and not a sniper.

UPDATE: The likelihood that these guys either had nothing to do with it or are copycats seems to be increasing.

Howard Kurtz - Media Critic?

I'm not the first one to observe that Howard Kurtz isn't much of a media critic. His criticism is generally limited to 3 basic points:

1) If people don't like it they can turn it off.

2) Is the media doing a good job? Yes.

3) The media is just giving the people what they want.

In other words - there is no actual criticism.

But, take a peak at this transcript which is absolutely incredible. Howie is completely shocked that his guests would suggest that television news ever markets fear.

KURTZ: Well, this is a troubling notion, the idea that you all seem to be implying, suggesting that yes, the media are not just covering a depressing, difficult and in many ways scary story, but actually selling fear, marketing fear...

This is a media critic?
Sully Watch has a lot to say.

Oh, and Smarter Andrew Sullivan does too.

15% of Priests Identify as Gay or 'on Homosexual Side'

And 23% of younger priests. Interesting.
Josh Marshall gets monkey mail.

Graham Seeks to Declassify Key 9/11 Data

WASHINGTON - Bob Graham, chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said yesterday he is seeking to declassify ''the most important information'' obtained in a congressional probe of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

Graham, Democrat of Florida, described the material as a key toward better protecting the United States. Graham's panel and the House Intelligence Committee have conducted a joint investigation of the Sept. 11 attacks, holding a series of hearings.

The committees are to issue a draft report by the end of this year, with a final report due in February. In the meantime, they are seeking to declassify much of what they learned. ''Frankly, there is a piece of information which is still classified which I consider to be the most important information that's come to the attention of the joint committee,'' Graham said on CBS's ''Face the Nation.''

Graham said, ''There's been a pattern in which information is provided on a classified basis, and then what is declassified are those sections of the report that are most advantageous to the administration.''


Sunday, October 20, 2002

Neal Pollack will be on the radio here (audio link) soon.
Ted Barlow, as usual, provides a sensible view of us homophobes on the left and elsewhere.

Energy Industry's Dirty Little Secrets.

Does anyone ever feel even a little bit foolish?

Glenn Reynolds Supports Assault of Non-Violent Protesters

says: "More like this, please"!

See there, and then this quote.

It seems to me that when the cause is politically correct, anything goes. Otherwise it's Marquis of Queensbury Rules. Bit of a double standard, I think.

Sanders says the forbidden word: Moon

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Alex Sanders criticized Republican opponent Lindsey Graham Monday for using "inaccurate information" from a conservative newspaper in a new ad to "mislead voters" on what Graham's Social Security plan would accomplish.

Graham campaigned in Rock Hill, joined by White House counselor Mary Matalin, as GOP strategists sought to further underscore the importance of the South Carolina Senate election to the Bush administration. Incumbent Republican Sen. Strom Thurmond is retiring after 48 years in office. Graham is a fourth-term U.S. House member from Seneca.

He said that the ad "sets the record straight on Sanders' attempts to distort the Bush-Graham efforts to save Social Security for future generations."

Sanders said his opponent's ad was based in part on an opinion column in The Washington Times that warned of Democratic "scare tactics on Social Security." The conservative paper, called a questionable journalistic source by Sanders, was founded in 1982 by the Rev. Sun Myung Moon, who heads the international Unification Church.

The ad alleges that "Alex Sanders and his Democratic Party cronies in Washington have it wrong," then links Graham and Bush to "a plan to guarantee benefits and to protect and preserve Social Security."

But Sanders said the opinion article was published well before he began running ads on Social Security and doesn't mention his campaign. Its references were to the 2000 presidential campaign between Bush and then Vice President Al Gore, he said.

Sanders said in a press release the state did not need Moon telling about Social Security or "Lindsey Graham telling people I'm trying to scare seniors."
UggaBugga comes up with a fun Rush tidbit:

We took a quick look at Rush Limbaugh's website. Along with the predictable material, there was an item about Zogby. Rush doesn't like the numbers Zogby is reporting on the Florida governor's race, and now claims that he is "shucking and jiving for Democrats on every poll that he reports." Rush continues:

I hate to say this, because it was not always this way. Zogby even used to let me put some questions in his polls.

Guest conservative Snotglass gets his turn:

Weak European liberals corrupted the stature of the Nobel Prize for Peace by awarding the prize to failed Democrat Jimmy Carter and uttering slanderous libels against our elected President, George W. Bush. Not since the Nobel committee failed to recognize the heroic efforts of Joachim Ribbentrop and V.M. Molotov in preserving peace by preventing Polish aggression has there been such a transparent effort to politicize the Peace Prize.

Through our War on Terrorism, President Bush has presented the world with the best solution to achieve peace and tranquility through the prosperity offered by the freemarket. Recent historical studies conducted by the Burke and Hare Center for Creative Entrepreneurship at the Heritage Foundation have shown that vigorous military campaigns, followed by humble diplomacy and targeted tax cuts, provide the appropriate model to ensure world stability.

Independent analysis by noted peace activist Jonah Goldberg validates this view. "During World War II the United States, through unilateral action, assembled a coalition of nations that defeated Japanses terrorism and imposed democracy on that country," Goldberg said. "Today, the Japanese political system and strong economy serve as an example that the model works."

You liberals should support our wartime President before it's too late.

Bush Taps HHS Budget for Campaign Expenditures

I'm really getting tired of "when clinton did it it was bad, but since Clinton did it it's okay."

Powell now says diasrming is enough.

All part of the cunning plan.
An interview with the radical Mike Signorile in the radical press.
David E. has some fun with Dan Savage, who really did write on of the stupidest columns I've read recently, and there has been a hell of a lot of competition. And I was just about to buy his book, too..
Rittenhouse Review on the "Party of Fiscal Responsibility."
Zizka on the Rumsfeld/North Korea connection.
Tony Adragna takes issue with my knocking of his use of the 'radical gay left' by citing this passage by Richard Goldstein:

These gayocons stand outside the tradition of queer humanism that runs from Oscar Wilde and E.M. Forster to James Baldwin, Tennessee Williams, and Allen Ginsberg. The moral core of this lineage—its compassion, its critique of power, its respect for the sexual—still informs queer culture. It is gay liberation. But this sensibility is barely visible in the liberal media. (You have to read the radical press to find the real thing.) What has emerged instead reflects the uneasiness that remains about gay coverage, even as genteel acceptance has replaced active abhorrence. No matter how secure we may feel, the fact is that gay people live in a halfway house at best. We are out on parole.

I suppose it depends on the meaning of the word 'radical.' Goldstein is contrasting the (not so) "liberal media," which has essentially excluded mainstream gay voices in favor of the likes of Sullivan, Vincent, and Paglia who, regardless of what one thinks of them, their writing, or their politics, are hardly representative of the gay community, with the alternative or, yes, 'radical press.' If this is the context in which Adragna is using the term 'radical', fair enough - I retract my overreaction.

On a lighter note, I went to see McSweeney's vs. They Might be Giants Last Night last night which was a fun combination of music and readings. Eggers read a bit from his new novel, You Shall Know Our Velocity , which included the best scary description of an 80s era junior high school dance I'd ever heard. You can order it here...
But, anyway, back to foreign policy.

From 4/3/2002

The US Government has announced that it will release $95m to North Korea as part of an agreement to replace the Stalinist country's own nuclear programme, which the US suspected was being misused.

Under the 1994 Agreed Framework an international consortium is building two proliferation-proof nuclear reactors and providing fuel oil for North Korea while the reactors are being built.

In releasing the funding, President George W Bush waived the Framework's requirement that North Korea allow inspectors to ensure it has not hidden away any weapons-grade plutonium from the original reactors.

President Bush argued that the decision was "vital to the national security interests of the United States".

Dwight Meredith adds:

GWB felt it was in the vital national security interests of the US to waive the inspection requirement for aid to North Korea.

In addition, North Korea's nuclear power plant is being built by the Swiss company ABB. Prior to 2001, one member of the board of directors of ABB was one Donald Rumsfeld.

Cheney sells spare parts to Iraq. Rumsfeld helps North Korea with its nuclear industry. Our ally Pakistan provided North Korea with nuclear technology. Our ally Russia is building a nuclear power plant in Iran.

What is the adminsitrations response to all of that? Invade Iraq of course .

Blog Queen bad, Corner Good?

Let me get this straight - Instapundit won't link to liberal Blogs that use the word "Blog Queen" beacuse they're homophobic, but he links to The Corner , home of Rod Dreher who considers gay sex acts 'perversion'?

Oh give me a fucking break. This gets more ridiculous by the minute.

Let's see. Instapundit also links to 'The Greatest Jeneration' who has adopted's hilarious witticism in unleashing a rant against The Gay Lady for daring to publish same sex union notices.

Ah well, anything to redirect attention from the simple fact that Instapundit thinks the symbolism of universities not seeming "anti-military" is more important than universities following their own codes which prevent them from allowing recruiters who engage in discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

UPDATE: Mat adds:

Oh, and I see Glenn also links to "Gene Expression," home of the maniacal and creepy "godlesscapitlaist," who espouses views that are equal parts Herbert Spencer (for the uneducated, he's the guy who devised the "Social Darwinism" theory), Joseph Mengele, and G. Gordon Liddy.

Mr. godlesscapitalist claims that he can "prove" the genetic inferiority of African-Americans, and his cure for their having that goddamn pesky "nigger gene" is a little boost of their genetic code by such esteemed geneticists like, lo and behold, godlesscapitalist! You know, pump a little more recombined "whitey" code into their DNA! How radical! We don't have to bother educating them and improving their social status; all we need to do is make them less "colored," less "nigger"--and please pardon that expression, but that's pretty much what he's saying on his blog.

Wow, Glenn, thanks for linking us to that freak. It's good to know these "Libertarian-Conservatives" like godlesscapitalist are leading the way to produce a more genetically-superior race of colored folks.

Maybe godlesscapitalist can also prove all homos have a genetic flaw he can fix too, right? Why, wouldn't we be better off without all those negroes and fags anyhow? Like making a better tomato, we can also use gentics to rid ourselves of this annoying vermin who are a threat to good, smart, and talented white people in the 'burbs. Puh-leeeeezzzz! Spare me, you fucking wacko!

Ole Instapundit probably doesn't even recognize the attendant irony in his bullshit. Fuck him and his 22,000 hits a day. I wouldn't want his demographics.

UPDATE: How could I overlook the fact that Glenn links to Letter from Gotham, the author of which recently, for no particular reason, referred to Whitney Houston as a "big druggy dyke."

More Homophobia

Rittenhouse review explains nicely something I've be unable to:

It’s true that some of the suggested titles referred to aspects of Sullivan’s private life that he and others, including me, would prefer not to hear more about, but I am mystified as to why we should be surprised that Data Lounge’s readers, many of whom have been living with or actively fighting AIDS, or watching their friends get sick and die from the disease, for the past five, 10, 15, or 20 years should be chastised for expressing their disgust for the hypocrisy revealed by Michelangelo Signorile in the pages of LGNY on an issue that had only recently exploded in the gay community. And I am compelled to ask what exactly about the post in question was “homophobic”? Apparently we are once again being directed to suppress any admission that gay men have sex lives for fear that doing so is per se homophobic. Some of the details at hand are embarrassing and spark considerable discomfort, but simply discussing the issue, or drawing attention to those who are doing so, is hardly “homophobic.”

Let's look at some of the 'Clinton Book Titles' Andy thought were funny:

"My Cheatin' Heart"
"Stuck Between Two Bushes - Hey, It Ain't All That Bad"
"Is You Is Or Is You Ain't My Intern"
"Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word."
"A.I.: Ahdidnothave Intercourse," "Crouching Bubba, Stolen Sofa."
"Harlem Globetrotter"
"I Warned You I Had A Bridge to the Twenty-First Century;"
"Sax And The City."
"The Buxom Schtupp Here."
"Who Moved My Squeeze?," "You Know You're A Redneck When ... The White House Edition,"
"Black Like Me"
"Blown Away: My White House Years."

If I were uncharitable, I could call many of these not so subtly racist, one or two a bit sexist, and of course definitely filled with anti-Southern bigotry - the last of which at least usually raises the hackles of the new P.C. Right.

UPDATE: Jesse has more.

If you see this you've managed to make it to the temporary location. I can't edit the old one, so leaving directions in the comment box is the only thing I could do.

'The Radical Gay Left?'

Oh give me a fucking break. It's like calling straight people who don't like George Will the 'radical left.'

UPDATE: Andy X says:

He takes "hypocrisy" and tries to define the way it is used in this instance completely differently than the way it actually IS being used. We accuse Sullivan of hypocrisy because of his personal actions being completely hypocritical of his written statements and lectures. The right is trying to define and limit the "hypocrisy" felt by simply as a gay man who doesn't go along wtih leftist politics - some sort of "Uncle Tom"ism that completely ignores Sullivan's very public personal transgressions.
It is very reminiscent in my mind, to the attempt over this summer to change around the meaning of "chickenhawk" to mean solely whether a civilian without military experience can still be an effective military leader, all the while ignoring the current context of "chickenhawk" to mean those who deliberately avoided VietNam in thier youths while clamoring for offensive war now.
I believe that this redefiniing of language is being used to absolve those on the right from the need to take responsibility for their personal actions. The attacks on these people on the left thereby becomes unfounded - "personal" attacks made on the sole basis of ideology and status of being an icon of the right - absolutely nothing to do as a response to the person's actual actions, but merely "unfair" partisan attacks based upon the persons "status". (Maybe they're so familiar with this point of view because that's the way they base their attacks)

Note to Andy X: Adragna considers himself a liberal, but I have a question for him:

What the hell is the 'radical gay left?' People who want the legal benefits of marriage, the removal of legal barriers to adoption, an end to discrimination by the military, and an expansion of existing anti-discrimination/hate crimes legislation to include sexual orientation so, among other things, people can't be evicted from their aparments simply for being gay? That, my friends, is the entire goddamn Gay Agenda? That's RADICAL?

My God. I guess I am part of the radical left then.