Filtered news 10/9/06

If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy. --James Madison Amazing how our Founding Fathers figured this out 200 years ago, and yet there are still 36% of Americans now that don't get it?

"If Karl Rove wants a piece of me he knows where he can find me."
... General Clark, our candidate in '08?

Now let's talk about love and courage Excerpt: As the Amish victims were laid to rest, tales of selfless heroism emerged of one victim who reportedly asked killer Charles Roberts to "shoot me first," to buy time for her classmates. ABC News reported that the oldest victim, Marian Fisher, reportedly stepped forward and told Roberts to gun her down in a bid to save her classmates. "Shoot me first," Fisher said, ABC quoted Rita Rhodes, a friend of the victims. Fisher's younger sister Barbie, who survived, then reportedly said : "Shoot me second."\

Robin Williams for president! Can we as citizens consider an actor, or an acerbic comedian, as a future presidential candidate? Could the citizens of our country be so tired of the great party divide as to even elect that celebrity on an independent platform? Check out the film's candidate, Tom Dobbs (played by Robin Williams), on the website: - you can download wallpapers, icons, banners, stills, and more. Here is Tom Dobbs's "Manifesto", as seen on the site:

I am fed up with politics. I decided to run because I am tired of a Republican Party
that cannot distinguish between an Amendment and a Commandment.

I am running for President because I am tired of a Democratic Party that is like
chameleon in front of a mirror that cannot decide what it is.

I decided to run because I am tired of party politics and the games politicians play
because party loyalty has become more important than their actual purpose.

The LAT reports, “A former House page says he had sex with then-Rep. Mark Foley (R-Fla.).” The ex-page said his correspondence with Foley began after he finished the page program for high school juniors, but the sexual encounter occurred when he was 21 years old. “The former page’s exchanges with Foley offer a glimpse of possible as he assessed male teenagers assigned as House errand-runners.”

Major black eye for the Navy The Navy lawyer whose successful defense of Osama bin Laden's driver led to the Supreme Court's landmark Hamdan decision has been over for promotion. Under the Navy's "up or out" promotion system, the decision forces Lt. Cmdr. Charles Swift into early retirement. He learned of the decision about two weeks after this summer's ruling in Hamdan, which was a historic rebuke to the Bush Administration, and not long after the National Law Journal named Swift one of the top 100 lawyers in America. Military promotion practices are notoriously byzantine and take into account many factors, but I think it's safe to say that this is a disgrace and a black-eye for the Navy.

Observation: Some kinds of ignorance are so obviously the result of hard, patient work that all you can really do about them is marvel at God's creation and move on.

Stupids at Newsweek Latest Newsweek : For the first time since 2001, more Americans trust the Democrats than the GOP on moral values and the war on terror. OK But there there's the Newsweek story describing the poll results also contains this head-scratcher: "Americans are equally divided over whether or not Speaker Hastert should resign over mishandling the situation (43 percent say he should, but 36 percent say he shouldn’t)." Equally?

For the Record There is no evidence that Congressman Patrick McHenry hasn't spent the last decade kidnapping babies, raping them, killing them, and piling them up in his basement shrine to Ronald Reagan. No evidence at all that he hasn't done this. Quite shocking, really.

This is :

A Republican congressman knew of disgraced former representative Mark Foley's inappropriate Internet exchanges as far back as 2000 and personally confronted Foley about his communications. A spokeswoman for Rep. Jim Kolbe (R-Ariz.) confirmed yesterday that a former page showed the congressman Internet messages that had made the youth feel uncomfortable with the direction Foley (R-Fla.) was taking their e-mail relationship. . . . The revelation pushes back by at least five years the date when a member of Congress has acknowledged learning of Foley's behavior with former pages.

That's not the other shoe dropping, that's Imelda Marcos' whole closet.

Who woke him up? Wolf goes and gets all on us--pugilistic even. The victim? The very deserving Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-NC), who has been making baseless charges about Democratic involvement in the Foley scandal. See the video .

Don't make mad:

So, anybody up for a chat about family values?

The term has been a registered trademark of the GOP -- the self-styled Morals Party -- for years, a bludgeon against Democrats who, by implication, oppose families and have no values. Like most political language, it's a code, intended to be understood by those with ears to hear. ''Family values'' means the pol in question has God on speed dial and can be counted upon to oppose gun control, the so-called ''homosexual agenda'' and abortion, while pushing schools to teach, as Tina Fey once put it, that Adam and Eve rode to church on dinosaurs.

For all its policy implications, though, ''family values'' has always had a larger meaning. It was an implicit promise to white, non-ethnic, rural or suburban-dwelling, church-going Christian moms and dads that the party would -- pun intended -- always do the right thing.


It was an assurance to Ward and June Cleaver that GOP was the brand name of a certain fundamental decency. Unless, it turns out, Ward and June were foolish enough to let Wally and the Beav sign up as congressional pages. In that case, kiss decency goodbye.

The full column doesn't get any prettier.

"If you were looking for the one man in this city less articulate than the president, you found him today"


"I'm not going to take a lecture on morality from a party that took hush money from a child predator,"
-- Harold Ford Jr. (D) in Memphis

State of denial Bob Woodward, author of the best-selling , appeared on Meet the Press this morning to talk to Timmeh about the book and the White House's reaction to it. Woodward shot down every the administration has put out in an attempt to obfuscate his core message: that we are not being told the entire truth about the Iraq War. -WMP -QT Woodward also tells Russert another fascinating nugget of information: Vice-President Cheney cursed him out over the information he revealed about the White House and hung up on him. (Full video -10873">(Read the rest of this story…)

"There's a car shortage in Cuba, so Cubans are still riding in horse drawn buggies.
The Cubans say the hardest part is teaching a horse to swim to Miami."
-- Conan O'Brien

Foley as metaphor The Mark Foley scandal is only marginally about Foley himself. More broadly, it's about the how the House Republican leadership handled the scandal and

Many strategists in both parties believe the scandal might echo principally as a metaphor for a GOP leadership that over the past year has drawn more attention for ethical lapses and partisan turmoil than legislative achievements.....A frustrated GOP strategist who spoke on the condition of anonymity essentially agreed, saying his party's mishandling of Foley "speaks to our inability to govern and do the right thing. It says everything about who we are as a party."

This just made my blood boil. :

Last month, feminist blogger Biting Beaver wrote about a nightmarish experience she'd had with a broken condom and a callous medical system that refused to give her over the counter or by prescription.

Instead of getting medical care during the critical 72-hour window of opportunity, BB was stalled, humiliated, scorned, quizzed, and deceived. A nurse tried to tell her that EC was "the abortion pill" other healthcare providers grilled her about her sexual history and her marital status. Her pharmacy wouldn't sell it to her OTC, her doctor wouldn't call in a prescription, and the local emergency rooms wouldn't give her a 'scrip because she wasn't raped or married.

Pat yourself on the back, culture of life, and she's getting death threats.

This is ridiculous. Educated professionals gave her incorrect information and refused requested medical treatment. And now she must deal with the repercussions of their outrageously negligent treatment. And don't even get me started with the emails she's received, I've don't think I've seen anything uglier.

Two new sources come forward to report that they when they played in poker games together. One of the sources said, “[W]henever [Allen would] get a black card that he didn’t like, he would refer to it as a ‘nig— card’ he needed to get rid of.”

GOP 's racist campaign Excerpt: "They have darkened Harold Ford's image to make a racist statement," Tennessee Democratic Party Chairman Bob Tuke told the Knoxville News Sentinel in reference to the photograph of Representative Harold Ford Jr. (TN-9th) used in a recent piece of direct mail distributed by the Tennessee Republican Party on behalf of the Bob Corker Senate campaign. "The campaign literature in question features a very dark image of Harold Ford Jr. next to a solicitation of "emergency contributions" for the Corker campaign.

Table for one at Chez Hell? Religious Right icon James Dobson - leader of - has had enough of people questioning the commitment of Focus and the Family and the allies in the wake of the Mark Foley / House Republican Leadership scandal. From the :


"A representative who has been a closet homosexual for years, apparently, was finally caught doing something terribly wrong and when the news broke, he packed up his things and went home," Dobson said.

And that, he said, should have been the end of the story. But it wasn't.
"As we know, the media and the Democrats saw an opportunity to make much, much, more out of it," Dobson said, "impugning the morals and character, not only of this disgraced congressman, but of entire the entire Republican Congress -- and Christian conservatives, including me."

That should have been the end of it?

We know that the Republican leadership was told that a member of their party was inappropriately contacting underage Congressional pages and Dobson thinks nothing should be done? Kids deserve better. Dobson's prayerful wish that this matter will simply go away won't come to pass.

Dr. Dobson, molesting children is serious business.

Dobson is upset because his refusal to break ranks with the Republican leadership over this issue has been called hypocritical in light of his call for Bill Clinton's impeachment for having an affair with an adult woman.


He quoted from a New York Times editorial with the headline "Conservative Coalition appears to be Coming Apart at the Seams" that was written by Paul Krugman.

"It will be interesting to see how Dr. Dobson," Krugman wrote, "who declared about Bill Clinton that no man has ever done more to debase the presidency -- responds to the Foley scandal. Does the failure of Republican leaders to do anything about a sexual predator in their midst outrage him as much as a Democratic president's consensual affair?"

Dobson emphatically said he stands by his assessment of President Clinton's scandal. As for Foley's action ...

"In fact, it does outrage me, Mr. Krugman," Dobson said. "We condemn the Foley affair categorically. And we also believe that what Mr. Clinton did was one of the most embarrassing and wicked things ever done by a president in power.

But it doesn't outrage Dobson enough to believe anyone in the Republican Party should be held accountable. Of course, Dobson neglected to mention . His lack of moral character is showing now more than ever.

And, of course, he blames the pages. Dobson, the man of God and child psychology to formulate a book on beating your children has this to say :

DOBSON: As it turns out, Mr. Foley has had illicit sex with no one that we know of, and the whole thing turned out to be what some people are now saying was a — sort of a joke by the boy and some of the other pages … By midafternoon yesterday, a rumor emerged that in fact Mark Foley had been pranked by the House pages. It is the first plausible thing I've heard in seven days..

Dobson is convinced a rumor about a prank is more plausible than every piece of real evidence there is. He's a scam artist in the first degree and a fake religious figure that raises huge amounts of money by selling snake oil. He has no shame defending Foley, but (I'm sure you know this) his real purpose is to shield the GOP because if they lose in November then his power diminishes.


Spongebob holding hands with Big Bird on a video about tolerance is shocking homosexual brainwashing. Exchanging lewd e-mails with Republican congressman is good clean fun.

That's an allegedly professional child psychologist and religious leader there, adopting Drudge's GOP approved talking point that this whole sordid affair is nothing more than an elaborate joke perpetrated by the victims. No harm, no foul, no evidence. Let's have some tolerance for powerful Republicans who can't be bothered to stop a drunken congressman from hitting on teenagers. The kids are alright….

Just askin' Don't you think that Republicans attacking Pelosi and CREW and bloggers over Foley is just like attacking Iraq when you know the crime was done by bin Laden? There they go again, Republicans attacking the wrong people when everyone knows who did the crime.

What to do about Iraq? The London Times says the Baker Commission is planning to recommend

The Baker commission has grown increasingly interested in the idea of splitting the Shi’ite, Sunni and Kurdish regions of Iraq as the only alternative to what Baker calls “cutting and running” or “staying the course”. ....His group will not advise “partition”, but is believed to favour a division of the country that will devolve power and security to the regions, leaving a skeletal national government in Baghdad in charge of foreign affairs, border protection and the distribution of oil revenue.

Will it work? Even Leslie Gelb, a longtime proponent of this idea, is pessimistic. "Everything is a long shot at this point," he says. Juan Cole, who knows more about the region than God, is more emphatic: "This is a very bad idea for so many reasons it would take me forever to list them all." I'm inclined to agree.

"Remember the good old days when the only people that Republicans were screwing were the poor." -- Leno

Help Hastert Hide the Perv! ..

for the GOP to fight, from Feministing: Melanie Martinez was fired from her position as host of PBS KIDS Sprout's "The Good Night Show" because she appeared in two 30-second online films when she was 27, "Technical Virgin" and "Boys Can Wait," that spoofed abstinence-only education. The PBS ombudsman dedicated two of his columns to voice his opposition to the firing of Melanie, but her job wasn't saved. Melanie says there is no lawsuit in sight.

Corruption watch As if being a well-confirmed racist wasn't enough, now he's got a little bit of an :


RICHMOND, Va. (AP) -- For the past five years, Sen. George Allen, has failed to tell Congress about stock options he got for his work as a director of a high-tech company. The Virginia Republican also asked the Army to help another business that gave him similar options.

Congressional rules require senators to disclose to the Senate all deferred compensation, such as stock options. The rules also urge senators to avoid taking any official action that could benefit them financially or appear to do so.

Those requirements exist so the public can police lawmakers for possible conflicts of interest, especially involving companies with government business that lawmakers can influence.

Of course, we all know that Republican lawmakers are above all that business about following the rules and ethics. Allen baldly admits it himself:


Allen's office said he sold his Xybernaut stock at a loss and has not cashed in his Commonwealth options because they cost more than the stock is now worth. The senator also said he saw no conflict going to work for companies shortly after assisting them as governor.

"I actually got no money out of Xybernaut. I got paid in stock options which were worthless. Commonwealth Biotech asked me to be on their board. Glad to do it. I learned a lot on their board and enjoyed working with 'em, and they seem to be doing all right, I guess," Allen said.

They don't have to follow the rules. They're Republicans.

What the GIs are saying Here's an interview between Amy Goodman of Democracy Now and Sgt. Marshall Thompson worthy of your review:

Army reservist Sergeant Marshall Thompson spent a year in Iraq working as a military journalist. He reported from across Iraq, interviewing thousands of US soldiers. Now back home in his native Utah, he is planning a 500-mile walk across the state to protest the war and call for a withdrawal of US troops.

AMY GOODMAN: Marshall, why did you join the military?

SGT. MARSHALL THOMPSON: I love my country. And I really wanted to serve it.

AMY GOODMAN: When did you join?

SGT. MARSHALL THOMPSON: I joined in 1999.

AMY GOODMAN: Before the 2001 attacks.

SGT. MARSHALL THOMPSON: Yes. I was deployed to Kosovo during the 2001 attacks.

And I've been very proud of my service. And it's just been a hard time in Iraq, because this war is unjust. And no amount of patriotism that I have can change that.

AMY GOODMAN: How did you come to the conclusion that it's unjust?

SGT. MARSHALL THOMPSON: Well, it happened before the war started. I was on the fence. And when Colin Powell addressed the UN, I believed him, like most people did, I think.

But then there was something in me that kept bothering me, and it was that the decision to go to war with Iraq was based on fear, fear of something that hadn't happened yet. And those are never good decisions. We can't make fear-based decisions.

So I decided that even if they had weapons of mass destruction, that I was going to be opposed to the war.

Then, years later when I went to Iraq, spent a year there, saw what happened, it was only reinforced.


(Read the rest of this story…)

"WHO DO YOU HAVE TO DECAPITATE TO MAKE PAGE 1 AROUND HERE?"....Michael Kinsley, fired from his job as editorial page editor at the LA Times a year ago,

My very first day on the job, I attended the Page 1 meeting in the newsroom. There was a story about a transient who allegedly had broken into the home of a 91-year-old Hollywood screenwriter — author of "Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein" and later a blacklisted victim of the Red Scare — cut off his head, climbed over the back fence (head in hand), stabbed a neighbor to death, and was ultimately arrested at Paramount Studios, where guards recognized him from police photos shown on a TV they weren't supposed to be watching on the job.

What a story! But it didn't make the front page. It ran in the Metro section. I asked [editor John] Carroll, "Gosh, who do you have to decapitate to make Page 1 around here?" Now we know.

If you haven't been following the recent LA Times soap opera and don't understand Kinsley's final sentence, click the link and read the whole piece.

Leno this week

  • "President Bush said today he is inviting other counties to help in Iraq. Isn't that kind of like inviting people to help you move? Iraq? I'm busy that Wednesday."
  • "In an interview with Mike Wallace about his new book, legendary Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward said that Henry Kissinger is now advising President Bush on Iraq, and they're trying to fight the Vietnam War all over again. Hey, why not? Bush missed it the first time."
  • "Henry Kissinger -- is that the best choice? How about taking advice from somebody who helped direct a war we actually won. Where's Patton?"
  • "The new leader of al Qaeda released an audio tape claiming 4,000 al Qaeda members have been killed by U.S. and Iraqi forces. In fact, so many al Qaeda guys are getting killed, they're running out of virgins for the afterlife. Instead of 72 virgins per guy, now 72 guys have to share one virgin."
  • "When it comes to Osama bin Laden, President Bush said this week he has no time for finger-pointing. He said he is the President of the United States and he has important duties as leader of the free world. Then he put on his helmet, and went to ride his bicycle."
  • "Top White House aide Dan Bartlett is criticizing Woodward's book, saying Woodward formulated conclusions before he even started interviewing people. ... Well if that's true, it's wrong. It would be like invading a country without having the facts."
  • "The Washington Nationals fired manager Frank Robinson after three last-place finishes in a row. In fact, the only person in Washington with a worst record keeping their job is Donald Rumsfeld"
  • "A congressman from Florida, 52-year-old Mark Foley, resigned today because of questionable e-mails he wrote to a former male page. The page was 16-years-old at the time. Out of force of habit, the Catholic Church offered to move him to another parish."
  • "I don't think Foley gets it. Like today, he apologized and promised to turn over a new page."
  • "Florida Congressman Mark Foley has resigned over allegations he sent explicit e-mails to underage boys. What is it with congressmen? If they're not grabbing your wallet, they're grabbing your ass."
  • "Let's see what is going on with Father Foley. I'm sorry, Congressman Foley. As I'm sure you know by now, after getting caught sending explicit e-mails to underage boys, Florida Congressman Mark Foley has resigned. So his seat is up for grabs, which is what got him into trouble in the first place."
  • "On Rush Limbaugh yesterday, Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert said, 'We took care of Mr. Foley. We found out about it and asked him to resign.' Yeah, a year later. That's not just slow, that's FEMA slow."
  • "The big question now is what should be done with Mark Foley's seat in Congress. I say, spray it with Lysol, boil it, coat it with Bactine, and then maybe you can sit on it"
  • "Mark Foley has now checked into rehab for alcoholism. Oh, shut up. Like that's the big problem. Who cares if he's addicted to Jack Daniels? He's addicted to little Jack and little Daniel. That's the problem."
  • "Most people think GOP stands for Gay Old Pedophile."
  • "Congressmen are now on their five-week break. ... Did you know they were off? No, you don't even know when they're working. Anyway, they have five weeks to campaign for their upcoming elections. You know, they're traveling around the country talking about the most dangerous threats to our country -- flag-burning and gay marriage."
  • "Well if you're into politics, what a big weekend this was. You could have seen Pakistan President Musharraf on 'Meet the Press,' Senator Joe Biden on 'Face the Nation' and Congressman Mark Foley on 'Dateline: To Catch A Predator.'"
  • "Earlier in the week, (ex-Rep. Mark) Foley checked himself into rehab. But according to the New York Times, many people question his alcoholism claim. That's when you know things are bad in Washington. When a congressman can't even be trusted to be a drunk."
  • "Remember the good old days when the only people that Republicans were screwing were the poor."
  • "What a month this has been for Republicans. George Allen's been on the front page and Mark Foley's been on every other page."
  • "They say Virginia Senator George Allen, who is under fire for making racially insensitive remarks, was at one-point thinking of running for President of the United States. Forget about that. I think he'd settle for imperial wizard now. ... This week Allen introduced a bill to help black farmers. He said this wasn't to make up for anything he's said in the past. No, this going to make up for the stuff he says in the future."
  • "The Senate has voted to approve the building of a 700-mile fence along our 2,000-mile border. And in the latest story, the Department of Transportation approved the building of a 30-mile bridge from California to Hawaii."


October 9, 2006 - 7:45am