Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Representative Number One

Justice Like A River

"Your honor, words will not be able to ever express how sorry I am for this, and I have profound regret and sorrow for the multitude of mistakes and harm I have caused," a contrite [sic] Abramoff told Huvelle in court today. "All of my remaining days, I will feel tremendous sadness and regret for my conduct and for what I have done. I only hope that I can merit forgiveness from the Almighty and from those I have wronged or caused to suffer. I will work hard to earn that redemption."
May God have mercy on your soul, Jack. And may United States District Judge Ellen S. Huvelle send your ass to prison for the next 30 years of your remaining days.

Wide World of Denial

Let's check the reax to the Abramoff plea across the Republican wingnutosphere.

Depends Media: "It may be just another wave of a rumor that has been swirling for some time, but the Los Angeles Times writes in its predictions for 2006 that Google will make a big announcement next Friday at the CES computer show in Las Vegas."

Mister Ed: "...Markos can kiss my entire ass."

InstaCracker: "THE WSJ LAW BLOG has an Abramoff guilty plea roundup."

BrokebackLine: The usual delusional crap; nothing about Abramoff.

Hugh Fuckwit: "The Abramoff scandal is a big DC story and even a potentially national story...."

Michelle Malice: "The Democrats are somehow involved, though I can't explain how." (paraphrase)

Roger el-Simon: Too busy researching Swiss banking and extradition treaties to blog today.

The Corner: "BABY NAMES [Kathryn Jean Lopez] This is a cool site."

Kudlow's Nose Candy Politic$: Lists line up for teevee show, nothing about Jackoff.

But here's my favorite, from NewsBusters.Org:

Matthews Calls Abramoff "Satan", Uses Phrase "Republican Culture of Corruption"
Posted by Ian Schwartz on January 3, 2006 - 15:38.

In an appearance on MSNBC today just after 1 PM Eastern time, Chris Matthews didn't accuse Jack Abramoff of being in the "Republican culture of corruption", but still uses the term:
MATTHEWS: He's cut a deal. The deal means he has to talk and that means if he's plead guilty to bribery that means he's bribed people. (Editor's Note: Thanks Chris for telling us the meaning of bribery) That means he's going to tell people who he bribed and that could be a half-dozen Congressman, it could be more, we've seen reports of more than 20 people involved here, including staffers. Mostly Republicans, not all Republicans who've figured in this story so far. I think it's going to be a big, sleezy story. I'm not sure it's partisan. I'm not sure people are going to see him as part of any Republican culture of corruption.
Matthews then went on to describe Abramoff's looks -- which was kind of scary -- and called him "Satan."

Tweety spins for the G.O.P., dismissing the concept of a Republican culture of corruption, and Ian still gets his knickers in a twist. Keep all sharp objects away from Ian.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Welcome To The Grand Illusion

Welcome to the Grand Illusion
Come on in and see what's happening
Pay the price, get your tickets for the show
The stage is set, the band starts playing
Suddenly your heart is pounding
Wishing secretly you were a star

Pay no attention to the man behind the guilty plea, says Cliffie Kincaid. It's just a Grand Illusion:

The Washington Post is in its scandal mode, hoping to hype the Jack Abramoff affair into something that will threaten Republican control of the House in the 2006 elections.

...

But because the names of Abramoff and DeLay were linked in the same article, the impression was created that there was something sinister going on. This is the name of the game -- create a lot of smoke and hope the authorities light the fire by pressuring Abramoff to plead guilty to something. Then we can anticipate countless more stories about the Abramoff affair right up to election day.

Nothing to see here, move along.

But don't be fooled by the radio
The TV or the magazines
They show you photographs of how your life should be
But they're just someone else's fantasy

Look, over there! It's George Soros!

This is one reason why you seldom read anything critical of George Soros. He funds some of the "watchdog groups" that supposedly monitor this "problem" of campaign financing for the public and the press.
"Watchdog groups!" "Problem!" "Quotation Marks!"

So if you think your life is complete confusion
Because you never win the game
Just remember that it's a Grand Illusion
And deep inside we're all the same.

And deep inside, Cliff's just insane.

But the new book, Media Cleansing: Dirty Reporting, documents how the fingerprints of the Soros network were all over the rationale for the U.S./NATO military operation in Kosovo. It was an operation conducted without the approval of the U.S. Congress or even the U.N. that Soros loves so much. The book by veteran journalist Peter Brock thoroughly documents how the Clinton Administration waged an illegal and unconstitutional war on Serbia for the benefit of radical Muslims in league with Osama bin Laden.
Look, Osama's giving Clinton an Islamofascist blowjob!

You're a troubled old man, I can tell, Cliffie.

Someday soon we'll stop to ponder what on Earth's this spell we're under
We made the grade and still we wonder who the hell we are
The New Year has broken with various calls to arms:

Contribute

Expose

Impeach

Shine On

The Wall Street Journal's First Smear Of The New Year

In its first edition of the New Year, the Wall Street Journal allows a Republican hack to smear a generous Democrat.

Ted Hayes, a recent Republican convert who imagines himself a homeless activist, writes:

Here's how the situation played out. Recently, I was invited to address a local Republican Women's Club; my landlord read an article in the local paper reporting on the event. Soon after, I received a notice raising the Dome Village rent from $2,500 a month to $18,330. Shocked, I inquired as to the seriousness of the change, and the property owner blurted out that the cause of our "eviction" was "because you are Republican." He said that as a Democrat, he was tired of helping me and the Dome Village. In other words, let the homeless be damned.

And people think the Democrats are the party of compassion and tolerance.

Here's the facts, which the Journal understandably omits:

Mike Sidley, the attorney for the limited-liability partnership that owns the land, and son of Milton Sidley, confirmed the rent increase but vehemently denied it had anything to do with politics.

"For 12 years, they've allowed [Dome Village] to remain there at below-market rent," Mike Sidley said Saturday. No one has ever come forward to attempt to purchase it at a market value and donate the land to Dome Village, he added.

Sidley said his clients were upset that Dome Village was announcing the rent increase close to Christmas, placing his clients in a bad light.

"When no one else would step up to the plate [to help Dome Village], my clients did. But there was never a thank you. Never a Christmas card. Nothing," he said. "No one in the city of Los Angeles ever stepped forward."
The owner subsidized "Hayes"'s project for 12 years, and the ungrateful douchebag Hayes thanks the owner by putting the words "let the homeless be damned" into his mouth.

Even more egregiously, Hayes attempts to smear the owner by suggesting he is racist. Hayes lards his article with alleged (and to the extent specifics are mentioned, bogus) claims of racist slurs against African-American Republicans. Yet there's no evidence, or even an allegation, that the owner spoke such slurs against Hayes or anyone else, or that the owner is in any way racist. Hayes and the Journal are the true bigots, by equating the owner's conduct with the alleged biased statements.

Hayes ends his article with the standard Republican lies about "Democrats persecuting black Republicans" and African-Americans "[who] have ourselves curtailed the freedom of political expression through the threat of retaliatory consequences." Here we see the Journal admit, by its actions, that it doesn't have much use for the free market, private property, private charity or freedom of expression. But it loves the G.O.P.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Larry David takes the Mick.

Roundtable For Five

The incest on today's Meet the Press was thicker than on a Tennessee family tree.

Father Tim gave not one but two plugs for Nooners' book, Pope Friction, though Nooners didn't appear on the show. He gave as many plugs to Doris "the Scrivener" Goodwin's Lincoln book. Goodwin didn't disappoint those expecting her obligatory "L.B.J. told me...." anecdote. After the panel fondled John Paul the Late's loafer a while, Jon Meacham mentioned the spectre haunting the roundtable: "Michael Beschloss, our great friend, historian Michael Beschloss."

Then John Meacham labelled Russ Feingold "a sane Howard Dean basically," and they all laughed. And laughed.

Then Pumpkinhead vouched that the entire table was reading Goodwin's book, Goodwin mentioned her priest, Pumpkinhead mentioned his dad, Goodwin called Pumpkinhead "kiddo," and Gene Robinson and Goodwin mentioned as an afterthought that New Orleans is gone.

Then they all had a smoke.

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Big Balls

It's New Year's Eve and a lot of balls will be dropping.

And not just at midnight.

I'm talking about the ones attached to Congressional Republicans:

WASHINGTON -- Federal prosecutors and lawyers for Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff are putting the finishing touches on a plea deal that could be announced as early as Tuesday, according to people familiar with the negotiations.

The plea agreement would secure the lobbyist's testimony against several members of Congress who received favors from him or his clients.

Everything changes on New Year's Day.

Happy New Year's everyone.

Ball safely.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

The Dead Pool

Bill Safliar is back on the Times' op-ed page, and the paper's not even bothering with the pretense that anyone would pay to read him. It's his prediction column, in which he touts Norah Vincent as "the new Steinem."

Judy Miller is the new Roy Cohn would be more like it.

The Power Broker

Finally, my immense influence over party politics has been recognized:

We have two great parties in America. One is in thrall to big money. The other is under the control of left wing "new politics," upper middle class, and highly educated activists. The primary domestic objective of the contemporary GOP is to comfort the comfortable and afflict the afflicted. However, the primary objective of the National Democratic Party is not to address the anxieties of the middle class or poor working Americans but rather to relieve the fevered anxieties of the ACLU, Hollywood funders and puerile bloggers.

As an anxious middle class puerile blogger, it sounds like a wash for me.

But I suppose I should use my new-found clout.

Dean, Reid, get this rightwing tosspot out of my party. Pronto.

Hey, CNN, as long as you're exploring the Mysteries of 2005, maybe you can tell us if anyone's seen Aaron Brown's body recently.

Call Western Union

I spent some more time wondering why Dana Rohrabacher would say the following, given the undisputed evidence of what a scumbag Jack Abramoff is:

"I think he's been dealt a bad hand and the worst, rawest deal I've ever seen in my life. Words like bribery are being used to describe things that happened every day in Washington and are not bribes."

Then I thought, what a stupid question.

School For Scandal

And while we're flogging Steno Sue (and her co-author and researcher), much to the consternation of Kitty Parker, what's up with this claim:

"[Abramoff] was a generous patron in his Orthodox Jewish community, starting a boys' religious school in Maryland?"

Generous like this?

Capital Athletic Foundation, a charity run by disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff now at the center of an influence-peddling investigation on Capitol Hill, told the IRS it gave away more than $330,000 in grants in 2002 to four other charities that say they never received the money.

The largest grant the foundation listed in its 2002 tax filing was for $300,000 to P'TACH of New York, a nonprofit that helps Jewish children with learning disabilities.

"We've never received a $300,000 gift, not in our 28 years," a surprised Rabbi Burton Jaffa, P'TACH's national director, told the Austin American-Statesman. "It would have been gone by now. I guess I would have been able to pay some teachers on time."

"Oh, but we only meant he was generous to one particular school. You know, the one he sent his own kids to, not the one for that kind of kids."

This one?

Internal records state, for example, that Abramoff and his wife, Pam -- who are listed as the foundation's sole directors -- spent more than 70 percent of its revenue from 2001 to 2003, or $4.03 million, on a Jewish school that Abramoff founded in Columbia. The Eshkol Academy operated for two years and schooled two of his sons before closing this spring with unpaid bills, faculty members said.

...

By that time, the Eshkol Academy had leased office space to use for classes and enrolled several dozen students, some of whom paid annual tuition of more than $12,000. The Capital Athletic Foundation contributed more than $1.85 million to the academy that year, enough to pay a handful of teachers and a dean. The school also bought two Zamboni ice-cleaning machines, even though it did not own a hockey rink.

...

E-mails at the time showed Abramoff pushing for more money for his enterprise. He sent an e-mail to Scanlon in February 2003 stating: "Please make sure the next $1M[illion] from Coushatta for me goes to Eshkol Academy directly. Please tell them that we are 'using the school as our conduit for some of activities.' " The e-mail added that "if that won't fly with them, use CAF," referring to the Capital Athletic Foundation, or the National Center for Public Policy Research.

Abramoff repeated the request in e-mails in March and April. The Eshkol Academy "is our front group," the first e-mail said. The second said: "I really need to get those funds into Eshkol asap. Let me know what we have to do."

More here.

Abramoff founded a school involved in money laundering; one that stiffed its employees (who Jackoff calls ingrates) and its creditors and screwed its tuition-paying students out of a diploma. What a mensch.

Further proof that Midget Mick was dropped on his head as a 40 year-old.
At firedoglake, Jane Hamsher nails Steno Sue Schmidt on the one sentence in the latest WaPo profile of Jack Abramoff which screams out for ridicule:

"[DeLay and Abramoff] forged political ties, but the two men never became personally close, according to associates of both men."

Whether or not the Bugchaser and Jackoff enjoyed family barbecues together or held each others' dicks in the clubhouse shower after 18 holes is, of course, irrelevant.

But what's pathetic is that Steno Sue repeats the "associates"' claim as fact without bothering to question, or test, that assertion.

Old stenographers never die, they just spin away.

Also of interest is Dana Rohrabacher's defense of Jackoff: "Words like bribery are being used to describe things that happened every day in Washington and are not bribes." That quote should be nailed to Rohrabacher's forehead every day, and the Justice Department should haul Rohrabacher in for a debriefing under oath, ASAP.

Update: It gets even worse.

Hic

Peggy Noonan must've gotten that longed-for 50-gallon drum of Ancient Age 'neath her Christmas tree:

But history moves quickly. His people hit reseat; he announced a refocus. The economy is an almost unnoticed triumph. Christmas spending is up 10%. Iraq votes yet again, amid pictures of purple fingers. Mr. Bush's numbers go up. He is dinged but not done. All will hinge on Iraq. History will say Bush was a dramatic and consequential president who broke through the wall of history and successfully reordered the most dangerous part of the world, or a dramatic and all-too-consequential president whose decisions yielded disaster. It's like looking at Woodrow Wilson in 1919 and wondering, How is this going to go?

Are you a pessimist? Then you're thinking Eccliastes: "Vanity, all is vanity."

That's what people are saying about your Pope book, Pegaloon. Now dry out and learn to proofread.

Speculation has it that the owners of the Wall Street Journal's publisher will sell the rag to the highest bidder this year. One can only hope that the new owner will sweep out the freaks -- Nooners, John Thumb Fund, Taranto and Dotty Rabinowitz, to name a few -- as a first step to restoring the paper's credibility.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Stop by TBogg's and wish him a speedy recovery. And his lovely and talented daughter too.

TBogg has passed the "four" thing to me, so get ready for an emotional roller coaster ride as I bare what passes for my soul.

Four jobs you've had in your life: Bagboy, pizza delivery boy, kitchen worker, research intern. (Two of the four were union jobs.)

Four movies you could watch over and over: Local Hero, Dr. Strangelove, The Graduate, Monty Python's Life of Brian.

Four places you've lived: hrmfmrrhm, Indiana, umhurmurm, Illinois, Oakland, Calif. and mumblemumble, Calif.

Four TV shows you love to watch: Love is too strong a word, but Jeopardy!, Mystery, C-SPAN II's Book TV (except when they show wingnuts) and any infomercial starring Billy "Sometimes Soaking Is The Solution" Mays.

Four places you've been on vacation: Philadelphia, Penn.; Toronto, Ont. (Canada); Mendicino, Calif.; Los Angeles, Calif.

Four websites you visit daily: Tbogg (of course), World O'Crap, the New York Times Crossword Puzzle page and [insert your blog's name here].

Four of your favorite foods: Spinach ravioli, grilled salmon, orange juice (no pulp) and chocolate-covered raspberries in a raspberry sauce.

Four places you'd rather be: Right here, right now there is no place I'd rather be. But, as if the cost of living wasn't high enough already: London, Edinburgh, Tokyo and Ho Chi Minh City.

Four albums you can't live without: London Calling, Brutal Youth, Amused to Death and Dvorak: Three Great Symphonies (Cleveland Symphony Orch., George Szell, Conductor).

I'll pass this on to Doctor Biobrain , just because.

Kitty Litter

I was going to ignore Kitty Parker's column about the pernicious influence of blogs. Parker is, after all, the columnist who quoted with approval a friend who advocated the assassination the 2004 Democratic Presidential primary candidates, and then attempted to cover up the quote and lie to her readers about it. So she should know about integrity and accountability.

The column is so vague as to be meaningless, and was no doubt phoned in weeks ago so Kitty could take another week's vacation at year end.

But I was curious about Kitty's own cred. Turns out she works as a flunky for the Buckleys, at something called the Buckley School of Public Speaking and Inbreeding. The mission of the school can be gleaned from the dribblings of its senile founder, Reid Buckley:

Have you ever grieved to see decent, gifted, hard-working people humiliated in public by jackasses? Have you been one of them?

In 1984, a toxic gas leak in Bhopal, India killed nearly 3000 [sic] people. The tragedy was terrible. So was the seeming incompetence of so many high Union Carbide functionaries, who where [sic - so much for standards] paraded before the camera. They appeared never to be able to get their stories straight.

As Reid Buckley watched these decent men squirm and fumble, he thought how unnecessary that humiliation was. He began testing a workshop to teach executives how to express themselves with poise under duress. The result four years later was the opening of the Buckley School.

Pity the poor executives, whose humiliation was at least as tragic to Reid as the asphyxiation, blindness and sudden death of thousands of Indians exposed to clouds of deadly poison in their own homes. And to be humiliated by poor, non-Anglo, non-Christian corpses, no less. I guess Kitty considers helping corporate killers get their stories straight to be of more value to society than blogging.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

ROGER'S YEAR IN REVIEW QUIZ 2005

It's time for the annual Roger Ailes year-in-review quiz, commemorating the highlights and lowlights of the past 361 days. (Trust me, nothing important is going to happen in the next four days.) Taking the quiz will allow you to achieve closure and put the past behind you once and for all.

Answers will be posted next year.

Good luck.

Part I -- 20 Points

Who Said It?

The premise explains itself.

1. "You are the best governor ever -- deserving of great respect!"

2. "But that's not how [Social Security] works. You pay your payroll tax; we pay for the people who have retired, and if there's any money left over, we spend it on government. That's how it works. And what's left is an empty IOU, a piece of paper. "

3. "Massages are routine in beauty shops in Cambodia and are not sexual, but for Srey Neth, they scream danger. I'm delighted."

4. "Ambitious, high-achieving women are still a turnoff in many areas, particularly if they're liberal and feminist."

5. "My whole life I've lived aboveboard. I've never even smoked a marijuana cigarette."

6. "There is no evidence that this memo came from the Republicans."

7. "Why should my past prevent me from having a future?"

8. "We have the ability to take him [Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez] out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability.

9. "Cool. The tsunami may have uncovered an ancient city."

10. "In no country except the United States have Jews felt fully a member of the national group in which they lived."

11. "She certainly seems to respond to visual stimuli."

12. "Out West, where you vacation, the aspens will already be turning. They turn in clusters, because their roots connect them. Come back to work -- and life."

13. "It has come to my attention that these statements are in error.... I did not contact Herzig-Yoshinaga or Irons directly.... I apologize to Irons and Herzig-Yoshinaga for the errors."

14. "And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this, this is working very well for them."

15. "Now move out of your parents's basements and join an Internet dating service
before you lose all your hair."

16. "I got it at Nordstroms .... Are you proud of me? Can I quit now? Can I go home?"

17. "People are beginning to think that your illness may have affected your brain, your judgment and your ability to do this job."

18. "The 9/11 Commission bears some responsibility for the disaster that American disaster relief has become.... But there was no deliberation after the commission issues its report and browbeat Washington into doing what they said. So Washington did. And FEMA is a mess. And New Orleans is a mess."

19. "[W]e need to get some $ from those monkeys!!!!"

20. "I'm never going to underestimate al Qaeda -- Never."

Scoring: One point for each correct answer.

Part II -- 20 Points

Dr. Phil In The Blanks

Like regular fill-in-the-blank, but with a huge misshapen melonhead.

1. "Again, I'm not going to comment on an ______________ ______________."

2. Justice ______________

3. "George Bush doesn't care about ______________ ______________. "

4. "You're a ______________ ______________ ______________ ______________. Your hands are shaking. You badly need another drink,"

5. Miss ______________ ______________

6. "Where the______________ ______________ at?"

7. "Whether [the truth] will continue to be submerged by a wave of ______________ by the Enron Task Force will be determined by former Enron employees."

8. The Bridge to ______________

9. "Well, I think that's ______________, and I hate that. Just let it go."

10. "I think they're in the ______________ ______________, if you will, of the insurgency."

Scoring: Two points for each correct answer.

Part III -- 20 Points

Grand Old Police Blotter: The Year In Republicrime Edition

2005 has been an embarassment of riches on the Republican crime beat. I was able to come up with 15 off the top of my head. The problem was who to keep off the list. (You dodged a metaphorical bullet, Bill Frist.)

And unlike those yobbos in Michelle Malkin's tales of pie throwing, sign-removing, misdemeanoring nobodies, nearly everyone here is a big-time player convicted or accused of felonious conduct.

Match the Republican:

1. Randy "Duke" Cunningham

2. Adam Kidan

3. Robert Taft

4. George W. Bush

5. David Safavian

6. Dick Dasen, Snr.

7. Lawrence Franklin

8. Irving Libby

9. Galen Fox

10. Robert Ney

11. Conrad Black

12. Jim West

13. Jack Abramoff

14. Don Sherwood

15. Armstrong Williams

16. Tom Noe

17. James Tobin

18. Robert Greene

19. Tom DeLay

20. Michael Scanlon

To his crime(s):

a. Lying, obstructing a criminal investigation

b. Abusive sexual conduct during airplane flight

c. Accepting bribes

d. Laundering presidential campaign donations

e. Gambling on cockfighting

f. Violation of ethics laws

g. Wire fraud, conspiracy

h. Failure to disclose payment recieved in exchange for broadcasting material

i. Sexual assault

j. Violation of Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act

k. Conspiracy to pass national defense information to people not entitled to receive it.

l. Sexual abuse of children, prostitution and promotion of prostitution

m. Accepting bribes from defense contractors, tax evasion, conspiracy

n. Racketeering, obstruction of justice, wire fraud, money laundering

o. Conspiracy to bribe public officials

p. Obstruction of justice, perjury and making false statements to investigators

q. Money laundering and conspiracy to commit money laundering

r. Offering government jobs in exchange for sex

s. Wire fraud, bank fraud, fraud fraud, defrauding clients, bribery of public officials, conspiracy to commit bribery, making illegal gifts and campaign contributions, you name it

t. Telephone harrassment

Note: All Republicans are innocent until proven guilty.

Scoring: 1 point for each correct answer. Five bonus points for correctly identifying the status of 16 or more criminals -- accused, indicted or convicted. (Bonus available if status is correctly identified, whether or not the crime is also correctly identified.)

Part IV -- 20 Points

Liars In Love

In 2005, Republicans were mostly able to keep their pants on (or at least out of the papers) and focus instead on their goals of denying sexual autonomy, equality and reproductive rights to their fellow citizens. What was lacking in quantity, the G.O.P. nonetheless made up for in diversity.

Match the Republican:

1. Bernard Kerik

2. Mickey Kaus

3. Drugs Limbaugh

4. Lewis Libby

5. James Guckert

6. Joe Braun

7. John Bolton

8. Oswego, NY, Mayor John Gosek

9. Neal Horsley

10. Jim West

With the actual or alleged object of his erection:

a. Underage girls

b. Mistress Daryn

c. motobrock

d. swing clubs

e. A bear

f. Judith Regan

g. A collared woman

h. A mule

i. Straight cowboys

j. Anyone with $200

Note: I wasn't present for any of this, and I couldn't be happier.

Scoring: Two points for each correct answer.

Part V -- 20 Points

Multiple Guess

There are no stupid questions. There are only stupid answers.

1. Which of the following terms did the Bush Administration and its media flunkies use to describe "Voluntary Personal Retirement Accounts"?
a. Private accounts
b. Privitization
c. Partial privatization
d. A windfall for our base
e. a, b and c but not d.

2. Which of the following is Mickey Kaus willing to give up to defeat terrorists?

a. His hair
b. His credibility
c. Your right to privacy
d. His fear of imaginary African-Americans and Hispanics with baseball bats.

3. Which one of the following politicians did not place his wife on a campaign and/or staff payroll to boost his family income?

a. Rep. Tom DeLay (R-TX)
b. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher(R-CA)
c. Rep. Jerry Lewis (R-CA)
d. Rep. David Dreier (R-CA)

4. How many House Democrats voted for the 2005 "Bankruptcy Reform" bill:

a. 143
b. 53
c. 63
d. 73
e. 83

5. Which of the following bits of crappy prose did not cost suckers $3.5 to 7 million:

a. "The liberal left gives succor to the radical elements of Islam by opposing executive power against our enemies."
b. "The Iraqi list of Allawi in another reaction said that they commission received 23 alerts of 'Red Flag' complaints which represent the highest level of violations, a spokesman of the list said they will obstruct the formation of the new government if the commission ignored those complaints."
c. "Lion Eats Lamb's March 2005 assessment of the Bush administration's indifference to the Irish Peace Process takes on a new perspective in retrospect."
d. "Geoffrey Mock of Human Rights in Egypt has been following the Nour trial for some time says 'There are strong voices for Egyptian democracy in the country, voices that speak from a wide range of opinions. ...'"
e. "The cars have been attacked by baseball bats. One witnesses is reporting by cell phone from behind bushes and trees."
6. Which of the following was not written by Kathryn J. Lopez at The Corner:
a. "I just dialed a wrong #. (Yes, I occassionally exist off of the Internet.) It was Jerry Springer."
b. "Peggy, keep your claws off B16."
c. "Dennis Miller is off CNBC as of Friday. Someone get this man another show.... He's a smart, funny dude.
d. "The pope never condemned the war in Iraq."

7. Which of the following did Judith Miller not complain about while in prison?

a. Her bedding
b. Bloggers
c. The television preferences of the other inmates
d. American casualties resulting from false claims that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction
e. The lack of privacy

8. Which of the following did Mark Tosspot, Michelle Malkin et al. not cite as evidence of Joel Henry Hinrichs III's Islamojihadofascistic tendencies:

a. Plastic bottles in the trunk of his car
b. The expiration date of his car's registration
c. His Pakistani roommate
d. Facts

9. Which of the following books will be published next year?

a. Who Moved My Government Cheese: How Liberals Ruined My Wonderful Gravy Train, by Armstrong Williams (WND Books)
b. Lynched: How Liberals Made Ku Klux Klan A Dirty Word, and How You Can Fight To Restore Its Honor, by Wes Pruden (Stormfront/VDare Books)
c. Rebel-in-Chief: How George W. Bush Is Redefining the Conservative Movement and Transforming America, by Fred Barnes (Crown Forum)
d. Blog II: Electric Blogaloo, by Hugh Hewitt (Regnery)
e. How Democrats Are Hitler, by Jonah Goldberg (Thomas Nelson Books)

10. To date, the direct financial cost of the War Against Iraq for American taxpayers is:

a. 175 billion
b. 200 billion
c. 229 billion
d. 247 billion
e. 284 billion

Scoring: Two points for each correct answer.

Part VI -- 10 Points

The Year In Preview

This year, we add a forward-looking section to the quiz. Answers will be posted January 1, 2007, I should live so long.

1. The longest prison sentence in 2006 went to which of the following:
a. Jack Abramoff
b. Kenneth Lay
c. Irving "Scooter" Libby
d. Tom DeLay
e. Karl Rove
f. Dick Cheney
g. Michael Scanlon
h. Drugs Limbaugh
i. Bob Ney

2. Bush's lowest job approval rating in 2006 fell below which of the following:

a. 35
b. 32
c. 30
d. 28
e. 25
f. 20

3. This film's Best Picture award at the 2006 Academy Awards caused el-Bent Bozell III's second heart attack:

a. Syriana
b. Munich
c. Brokeback Mountain
d. Goodnight And Good Luck
e. Transamerica
6. Capote
7. Herbie: Fully Loaded

4. The greatest percentage increase in the past 12 months (since December 31, 2005), occurred in the following:

a. The national average price for regular unleaded gas
b. The Dow Jones Industrial Average
c. The unemployment rate
d. The national average home price
e. The number of Americans who think Bush should be impeached
5. The first conservative commentator and/or columnist to be caught accepting payola in 2006 was ________________.

Scoring: Two points for each correct answer.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Thhhhwappp!

A theologian folds the Washington Post Book World into the shape of a ruler, and raps Knucklesucka hard:

There is the morning -- the very ordinary sunny morning -- when her glass coffee mug shatters in her hand and produces rounded pebbles rather than shards. Noonan takes this as a sign from God, who says: "There is explosive power in what appear to be mere pebbles. There is explosive power in the Rosary, for instance. And I want you to know this." Having received a rosary from the hands of the pope, she begins saying it. All of this -- the mug, the coffee that didn't scald her, the pebbles, the rosary, the pope, God -- " feels like a little miracle ." Or maybe it was just shatter-proof safety glass.

But how does one explain the miracle of Nooner's Continuing Employment?

The chapters recounting her spiritual development and back-sliding are high on rhetoric and low on detail. Veiled allusions to challenging and painful events vanish into the wisps of spiritual counsel, drawn from her own articles and columns, which have been cut and pasted into this volume.

Let it bleed.

In the land of Cafeteria Catholics, Peggy Noonan's diet is best described as self-cannibalistic.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Happy Christmas

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.

Blow Me, Hillbilly

Glenn Reynolds says:

"I'm disturbed tremendously."

Yes, we know that.

What's that, Goober? You're not finished with your thought?

"I'm disturbed tremendously that such a suspicious story was accepted so uncritically by alleged critical thinkers."

Pardon? Could you repeat that, Ernest?

"ECOTERRORISM spreads from the West to the East."

I thought so.

Fucking idiot.

Friday, December 23, 2005

At least I've got my hair

In the unlikely event you've had trouble telling us apart, this should end the confusion:

Roger Ailes has extended his contract as chairman and chief executive of Fox News for five years in a deal that will bring him a $5 million annual salary. In addition, Reuters reported, he is to receive a performance-related bonus of at least $1 million a year. News Corporation, the parent of Fox News, said Mr. Ailes's duties also include the posts of chairman and chief executive of Fox Business Channel, chairman of Fox Television Stations and 20th Century Fox Television Syndication and editor in chief of FoxNews.com.

I have got alot of catching up to do.

P.S. The performance bonus is tied to the increase in Republican seats in Congress.

In preparation for the most eagerly anticipated event in the blogosphere ever, here are two preliminary year-end quizzes for you to practice on:

Guardian 2005 News Quiz

King William's College 2005 General Knowledge Paper

Note: I scored 30 on one of them.

Update (12/24): More here.
Joshua Marshall almost has this right:

Reading over the reportage of what happened yesterday, it seems clear that Luttig and the other two members of the panel were less perturbed about civil liberties issues per se (Luttig wrote the decision that allowed the government to hold Padilla indefinitely as an 'enemy combatant') than the administration's cynical willingness to jump from legal argument to legal argument, from one set of facts to another, as the needs of the moment dictate.

Cynical bastard that I am, I believe the motives behind the outrage were nearly as base as the Administration's. Luttig and his fellow Appellate Lords were pissed not about BushJustice's duplicity, but rather that the BushJustice wasted their time by making them hear and decide the case, all for nought. They didn't work so hard getting the ample duffs elevated to the appellate bench just to have to do more work. And they could have better spent the time taken to craft their original opinion writing Washington Post op-ed pieces demanding the end of civil liberties.

Chalabists

Defeatedist Ahmad Chalabi is claiming that the Iraqi elections were compromised by fraud. Guess that purple ink thing didn't work so well after all.

And Chalabi has called in Republican lobbyists to get results.

The firm, BKSH & Associates, is the lobbying vehicle of Republican insider Charles Black and registered with the Justice Department as an agent for the INC's Entefadh Qanbar.

Lobbyist Riva Levinson wrote in an e-mail to NBC News of concerns about fraud in the Iraqi elections. She wrote that "many parties, including the INC, are concerned about fraud with dozens of cases now being actively investigated."

Hey, Ahmad, maybe you could get the United States to invade Iraq to restore democracy.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Shorter Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK)

"I'm Gumby, Dammit!"

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Posner Waiver

There are some who say they would sacrifice personal freedom for security from terrorism. To them I say: What's stopping you?

Just sign and date the following Posner Waiver:

I, ___________________,

hereby waive any rights of privacy in my person, property, association, thought and/or expression that I have, had or claim to have under the federal and state constitutions, statutory law or regulation of the United States or any political subdivision thereof, decisional law, common law and/or any other source of authority, real or imagined, to the extent the waiver of such rights is, in the sole judgment of any military, law enforcement or national security employee of the United States, deemed necessary to prosecute the war on terror.

This waiver applies both retroactively and prospectively.

_____________________________
(Signed)

_____________________________
(Dated)

Cut-and-paste the above waiver and e-mail it to comments@whitehouse.gov, or vice_president
@whitehouse.gov. Put "Posner Waiver" in the subject line.

James Wolcott on Daniel Pipes. A joy to read.

Line Forms To The Right

As Jack Abramoff prepares to rat on his fellow vermin, things are looking increasingly bleak for Bob Ney. Steno Sue transcribes the details:

Prosecutors have told one lawmaker, Rep. Robert W. Ney (R-Ohio), that they are preparing a possible bribery indictment against him over official acts that benefited clients of Abramoff. Ney inserted comments in the Congressional Record at Scanlon's request praising Kidan and castigating the reputation of SunCruz's then-owner, Konstantinos "Gus" Boulis, during contentious purchase negotiations.

In October, prosecutors got agreements from Abramoff, Kidan, Ney and former Ney aide Neil Volz to suspend the five-year statute of limitations while the investigation continues. Ney has said he was misled by Abramoff and Scanlon.

In Scanlon's plea agreement, he agreed to testify against Ney. Kidan's attorney has said he is prepared to testify against Ney as well.

I bet you could get Rasmey Clark to defend you, Bob.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

This is a fucking joke, right?

"The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act makes it difficult to conduct surveillance of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents unless they are suspected of being involved in terrorist or other hostile activities. That is too restrictive. Innocent people, such as unwitting neighbors of terrorists, may, without knowing it, have valuable counterterrorist information."

Intelligence Design

The schoolchildren of Dover, Pennsylvania learn an important lesson: Never allow yourself to be represented by the Thomas More Law Center.

Excerpts from United States District Judge John Jones' Memorandum Opinion in Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District (note: large .pdf file):

Finally, although Buckingham, Bonsell [both members of the Dover Area School Board of Directors], and other defense witnesses denied the reports in the news media and contradicted the great weight of the evidence about what transpired at the June 2004 Board meetings, the record reflects that these witnesses either testified inconsistently, or lied outright under oath on several occasions, and are accordingly not credible on these points.

...

As we will discuss in more detail below, the inescapable truth is that both Bonsell and Buckingham lied at their January 3, 2005 depositions about their knowledge of the source of the donation for Pandas, which likely contributed to Plaintiffs' election not to seek a temporary restraining order at that time based upon a conflicting and incomplete factual record. This mendacity was a clear and deliberate attempt to hide the source of the donations by the Board President and the Chair of the Curriculum Committee to further ensure that Dover students received a creationist alternative to Darwin's theory of evolution. We are accordingly presented with further compelling evidence that Bonsell and Buckingham sought to conceal the blatantly religious purpose behind the ID Policy.

...

Third, Cleaver voted for the curriculum change despite the teachers' objections, based upon assurances from Bonsell. (32:23-25 (Cleaver)). Cleaver admittedly knew nothing about ID, including the words comprising the phrase, as she consistently referred to ID as "intelligence design" throughout her testimony. In addition, Cleaver was bereft of any understanding of Pandas except that Spahr had said it was not a good science book which should not be used in high school. (32:45-46 (Cleaver)). In addition, Superintendent Nilsen's entire understanding of ID was that "evolution has a design." (26:49-50 (Nilsen)).

...

Moreover, Board members and teachers opposing the curriculum change and its implementation have been confronted directly. First, Casey Brown testified that following her opposition to the curriculum change on October 18, 2004, Buckingham called her an atheist and Bonsell told her that she would go to hell.

...

Defendants' asserted secular purpose of improving science education is belied by the fact that most if not all of the Board members who voted in favor of the biology curriculum change conceded that they still do not know, nor have they ever known, precisely what ID is. To assert a secular purpose against this backdrop is ludicrous.

The opinion is chock full of lessons, about religion, and the law, and natural selection. You could teach a course based on it.

Point of Personal Privilege

2000 miles
is very far through the snow
i'll think of you
wherever you go

he's gone 2000 miles
it's very far
the snow is falling down
gets colder day by day
i miss you

i can hear people singing
it must be christmas time
i hear people singing
it must be christmas time

Squeal and Deal

This could be the best Christmas ever.... but not for the Republican Party.

It's not too late to make your wish list.

WASHINGTON, Dec. 20 - Jack Abramoff, the Republican lobbyist under criminal investigation, has been discussing with prosecutors a deal that would grant him a reduced sentence in exchange for testimony against former political and business associates, people with detailed knowledge of the case say.

Mr. Abramoff is believed to have extensive knowledge of what prosecutors suspect is a wider pattern of corruption among lawmakers and Congressional staff members. One participant in the case who insisted on anonymity because of the sensitivity of the negotiations described him as a "unique resource."

And here are some heartwarming Republican values ... two for the price of one:

Prosecutors are also looking at how some former Congressional staff members landed their lucrative lobbying positions and at the role the wives of several lobbyists and lawmakers may have had in any influence scheme, a piece of the puzzle that investigators have begun referring to privately as the "wives' club."

It gives one a warm glow.

Update: Jeralyn Merritt says Jackoff is claiming to be more broke than the troglodytes he swindled. Quick, someone send him a copy Thou Shalt Prosper: Ten Commandments For Making Money.

Blockbuster

Democracy In Iraq

Ahmad Chalabi got more purple fingers from Judy Miller than he did from his countrymen and women.

At 227 billion and hundreds of thousands killed and wounded, that's a piss poor return on investment.

As I've long suspected, vegans and Catholics are the real terrorists:

One F.B.I. document indicates that agents in Indianapolis planned to conduct surveillance as part of a "Vegan Community Project." Another document talks of the Catholic Workers group's "semi-communistic ideology." A third indicates the bureau's interest in determining the location of a protest over llama fur planned by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

Wiretaps on those Catholic radicals, Opus Dei, are well in order. And they should be purged from the Supreme Court too. I know I'd sleep better.

Meet Your Liberal Media: Withhold Publication And Be Damned Edition

You can't handle the truth, according to Helen Keller and Pinchloaf:

But two journalists, who declined to be identified [sic], said that editors at the paper were actively considering running the story about the wiretaps before Bush's November showdown with Democratic Sen. John F. Kerry of Massachusetts.

Top editors at the paper eventually decided to hold the story. But the discussion was renewed after the election, with Risen and coauthor of the story, reporter Eric Lichtblau, joining some of the paper's editors in pushing for publication, according to the sources, who said they did not want to be identified because the Times had designated only Keller and a spokeswoman to address the matter.

"When they realized that it was going to appear in the book anyway, that is when they went ahead and agreed to publish the story," said one of the journalists. "That's not to say that was their entire consideration, but it was a very important one of them."

All the news that Bush permits.

Cowards.

And failed public editor Daniel Jokrent pipes up with this particularly unenlightened comment: "You are damned if you do and damned if you don't... For the right, this information never should have come out. And for the left, it never could have come out early enough." For anyone who cares about the rule of law, this information never could have come out early enough.

Update: This is rich: The Times opines on the "Fog of False Choices." It prefers that its readers have no choices. Congress didn't give Bush the authority to spy on Americans. For the past year, the Times did.

Nonbogosity Is A Complete Defense

"An Us Weekly story that Ms Spears and husband Kevin Federline had made a sex video and were afraid it would become public was 'bogus', the action stated."

Monday, December 19, 2005

Roy Moore, Antichrist

One Alabama fundie thinks former Chief Justice Roy Moore is about to trigger the End Times or a new Civil War or ... something:

A Christian talk show host from Mobile who sued to reinstate Roy Moore after he was ousted as Alabama's chief justice has decided not to support Moore's run for governor.

Kelly McGinley says that some of Moore's prominent supporters are "dominionists" who wish to bring about a government based on Old Testament law, which would administer the death penalty for offenses ranging from homosexuality to talking back to your parents.

McGinley said that although she loves Moore and his family and has spent a lot of time with them, she fears his election could set in motion cataclysmic events.

It would set up a showdown between the state and federal government, leading to an invasion by the feds and resistance by Alabamians, McGinley said. The conflict would serve as the pretext for a government imposition of a manmade version of Biblical law, McGinley believes.

She links Moore, the Republican Party, the Council for National Policy, the Rev. Sun Myung Moon and Masons in a conspiratorial web.

"It is too extreme for the likes of me," McGinley said. "It is pretty interesting that our primary is on 6/6/06."

Moore in league with the Moonies. It's a small world after all.

(Thanks to a reader for the tip.)

Bush Apologist Extra

Howie the Putz was at his most simpering in today's chit-chat:

Washington, D.C.: Could the wording of the executive order have allowed the NSA to monitor and transcribe communications between The Washington Post and its reporters in Baghdad and Afghanistan?

Howard Kurtz: I suppose it would. Although administration officials would have to have some terror-related justification beyond the fact that they don't like us.

And why would that be, Howie? Because they wouldn't do anything illegal? They already violated the law. Because they wouldn't screw someone over just because they can? Because they respect the press? Because the Post is already in the Administration's pocket?

You've come a long way, Putzie. From working for Jack Anderson for free to working for jack-booted thugs for the same rate.

Ex-welfare queen Armstrong Williams's latest column about life off of the dole:

Self Sabotage Preventing More Black Entrepreneurs

Like you would know, freeloader.

A Peggy Noonan Christmas Special

Between feedings, the Crazy Dolphin Lady thrills WaPo readers with a chat about Papa Jay Pee:

I have just had a wonderful Christmas lunch in Manhattan with close friends. We were high up in a building, on the 65th floor, and the city was spread out before us and we could see as far as Jersey. Dominating the landscape was the Empire State building, Kong-less and looking somehow...old fashioned. Like the 1930's. Like the city when I first saw it when I was a kid. Now I'm back home in Brooklyn watching the news on CNN....
Or herself.

But then some punk asks Peg about John Paul the Great Opponent of Bush's Illegal War.

Annapolis, Md.: Hi:

Why did Pope John Paul II opppose the war in Iraq?

Peggy Noonan: There is so much talk about that, I mean there has been. I'm not going to get down in the weeds in terms of 'He really was opposed', 'He really wasn't!' I took it this way: He was the Vicar of Christ in the world. What would such a person do, oppose war or encourage it? Ask for patience or violent action? It is, not to be crude, the job of a pope to oppose a resort to arms and support peacefulness. It is his job to encourage prayer and peace. So his stand as I understood it never surprised me, and did not discourage me. And I believe his public statements garnered what they deserved, respect and attention.

So Ol' Karol W. was only great when he wasn't supporting peace.

And that pedophile thing ... not his fault.

I believe John Paul simply could not imagine -- had no catagory for -- could not possibly envision -- the idea of priests of the church operating in a racket in which they sexually abuse children and when their superiors learn of it the priests are not sacked but transferred, quietly. John Paul grew up in a church in which priests were heroic. They saved lives. They risked their own lives. They resisted the Nazis and the communists. I think the old man simply couldn't imagine the way the American church was being run.

A guy that resisted Nazis and commies but couldn't imagine pedophiles... now that's greatness!

Anyway, those pedophile priests aren't going to ruin Peggy's supper.

It is dark now already in Brooklyn and I am about to go have dinner. Goodnight everyone.

Goodnight, Loon.

Cato Unbound: Your Discount Source For Libertarian Whores

Looking for a principled libertarian to opine favorably about your lobbying client? Cato Unbound is the eBay for your media-access needs.

For less than 2K, you can purchase a slightly-used David Boaz or Will Wilkinson. For a thou, Walter E. Williams will debate in favor of your client or cause against a strawman who repeatedly calls him "Williams." For a Franklin, P.J. O'Rourke or Penn Jillette will perform at your kid's birthday party.

Winning the Friedman Prize will set you back a million, but you get half back after your check clears.

Further proof of the miracle of the marketplace.

Note: Doug Bandow is permanently sold out. Please make another selection.

The Ransom of Red Chief

Embarrassment has been ruled out as a cause of J.D. Hayworth's unnaturally red face.

From today's New York Times:

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, a research group in Washington that monitors the influence of money in politics, Mr. Hayworth was the largest single Congressional recipient of donations from Mr. Abramoff and his family, his associates, his Indian tribe clients and a gambling cruise ship line that he owned, with more than $101,000 going to Mr. Hayworth and his political action committee since 1999. Mr. Hayworth was also a frequent guest in sports skyboxes controlled by Mr. Abramoff and his clients, and at Signatures, a Washington restaurant owned by the lobbyist.

Mr. Mitchell said Mr. Hayworth needed to return donations linked to Mr. Abramoff if he wanted to prove that he was not involved in "all the corruption that's been going on in Washington." In the meantime, Mr. Mitchell said, the party was looking for a strong candidate to challenge Mr. Hayworth in a race that, he said, would now focus in large part on the incumbent's ties to Mr. Abramoff.

Mr. Hayworth's chief of staff, Joe Eule, said in a statement that he did not take Mr. Mitchell's threats seriously and that the congressman had no intention of returning the money.

But we now know why Signatures was operating at a loss.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Knucklesucka

The NYT Book Review diagnoses Knucklesucka Noonan:

The result is a valentine sent to a man she knew mainly from watching television, written in the idiom of spiritual gush. Typical are these lines about her efforts to get inside St. Patrick's Cathedral during his 1995 trip to the United States: "This time I really wanted to see him, wanted to rest my eyes on him; I wanted to feel the constriction in my chest when he went by." In short, "John Paul the Great" is as much about Peggy Noonan as it is about the pope - which is probably why her name is in larger print than his on the cover, and in the place where book titles normally appear.

...

Noonan devotes a meandering chapter to some of John Paul's "beliefs," and another to his social teachings. But nowhere do we read from this Republican pundit that John Paul opposed both the gulf war of the first Bush administration and the invasion of Iraq initiated by the second. A more glaring omission, especially for a woman, is the absence of any discussion of birth control. She has her chance: she extols at length John Paul's "theology of the body," a highly romantic and unrealistic view of human sexuality that he expounded in a series of pastoral conferences. But she seems unaware that these papal discourses were specifically devised to strengthen the widely rejected teaching of Pope Paul VI, who insisted in his encyclical of 1968, "Humanae Vitae," that every act of intercourse must be "open to the transmission of life." Her silence on the subject in so personal a book leaves the reader wondering just how well she understands - and accepts - the teachings of her spiritual father.

Oblivious and willfully ignorant. That's our Peg.

Bush Lied, Liberty Died

I'd bet most people (or at least most thinking people) had the same thought the second they heard or read Bush's ludicrous defense of his illegal wiretapping, namely, that disclosure of the scheme "put citizens at risk." Joshua Marshall expresses the thought eloquently:

[T]his program allowed the president to conduct warrantless wiretaps in cases where he could have conducted the same wiretaps with warrants by seeking a warrant from the FISA Court. If the wiretaps were against the "international communications of people with known links to al Qaeda and related terrorist organizations" then the FISA Court certainly would have issued the warrants.

Given this obvious fact, can we really believe that Bush was using his self-appointed powers for the purpose he claims?

Vlad the Impaler

Congratulations to the Chernenkos, and good luck to little David.

Amazing Graft

Taking money from gambling casinos to shut down the casinos' competitors has made Ralph Reed a better man:

But the fact that his campaigns were secretly fueled with gambling funds has raised the ire of many religious groups, which Reed said he regrets.

"I cannot change the past, but I can certainly learn from it," Reed said. "I am a better man and a better leader as a result."

And Jimmy Swaggart's encounters with a prostitute made Jimmy a more sensitive and responsive lover.

The Tough Questions

Marvin Olasky isn't afraid to ask the tough questions:

"Why is Thomas Kinkade's art so popular?"
My answer: Why is Marvin Olasky taken seriously?

My alternate answer: Four words: volume, bodily fluids and fundies.

And here's Kinkade's own answer:

There are artists who set fire to themselves or urinate on the canvas, but they aren't as controversial as me! I've only done one thing, and I've done it well. I create romantic images that are warm and welcoming. What I paint provides comfort and hope to some people, and that's why I do it.
Here's more on the Intense Herpes in Ten² Cities Asian Tour, headlined by Sun Myung Moon and Neil Bush.

Abu Gonzales Tortures The Language

"Let me just say that winning the war on terror requires winning the war of information," Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales told reporters. ". . . And so we will be aggressive in obtaining that information, but we will always do so in a manner that's consistent with our legal obligations."

In the war against information, the loss of freedom is collateral damage, the Bill of Rights is a terrorist manifesto, and you are the enemy.

The Glittering Prizes

The Gucky

Apparently some wingnut blowhards are yammering about the lack of coverage of recent election results by left-leaning blogs.

To squarely address their phoney-baloney concerns, I am pleased to announce that Roger Ailes was voted the winner of the James Guckert Escort Agency Prize -- aka the Man Hooker Prize and the Gucky -- for "Best of the Top 501-1000 Blogs," or, more accurately, "the 501st Best Blog."

Did I mention I once won a Koufax Award?

Anyway, I'd like to thank the James Guckert Escort Agency for sponsoring the contest, and everyone who voted for me (or the one person who voted for me 1,676 times). The Gucky will come in handy when I remodel the bathroom next spring.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Great Expectations

From the NYT:

At Cato and similar institutions, adjunct scholars are not always prohibited from accepting outside consulting roles. But at Cato, said Mr. Dettmer, and at the American Enterprise Institute, said a spokeswoman there, rules require scholars to make public all their affiliations, and there is an expectation that scholars will not embarrass the institution.

Really?

The home of Jimmy "the Turf" Glassman?

Newt Gingrich?

Michael Ledeen?

Dick Perle?

John "Waterboard" Yoo?

John "Mary" Lott?

Charles Fucking Murray?

The AEI cannot be embarrassed.

Grand Old Police Blotter: Corruption Fatigue Edition

The main problem with chronicling Republican corruption is finding the time needed to catalog the criminality.

Here's a holiday sampler of what's happening this week.

Let's start with James Tobin, the G.O.P. operative whose criminality has been underwritten by the RNC:

A jury convicted a former national Republican official of two telephone harassment charges for his role in a phone-jamming plot against New Hampshire Democrats on Election Day 2002.

...

Tobin, 45, of Bangor, Maine, was regional political director to the Republican National Committee and the National Republican Senatorial Committee in the 2002 election, the year of a closely watched Senate race between Democrat Jeanne Shaheen and Republican John Sununu. Sununu defeated Shaheen, 51 percent to 46 percent. Tobin was President Bush's New England campaign chairman last year, but resigned when the allegations became known.

He faces a maximum seven-year prison term and $500,000 in fines when he is sentenced in March....

Separately, state Democrats are pursuing a civil lawsuit, which they hope will expose knowledge or approval of the scheme by GOP officials higher than Tobin. Republicans have insisted it was conceived and executed at the state level.

In August, the Republican National Committee acknowledged it had spent more than $722,000 to provide Tobin with lawyers from a high-powered Washington law firm. Party officials who said they ordinarily would not discuss such matters said they underwrote Tobin's defense because he was a longtime supporter and assured them he had committed no crimes.

If the RNC incurred nearly three-quarters of a million dollars in attorneys fees well before trial started, the bill through trial must be twice or three times that. One wonders if the RNC will abandon Tobin if an appeal is contemplated. And which will cost more, cutting Tobin loose or keeping him in the fold.

Then there's Crime Lord Conrad Black, master of toady David Frum, an aristocrat done in by technology best known for capturing petty theives at the Seven-Eleven:

A seven-month-old videotape showing Conrad Black, his chauffeur and his personal assistant taking 13 boxes of documents out the back door of his company resurfaced yesterday as U.S. prosecutors laid four new charges against the media tycoon.

...

Originally charged last month by the U.S. government with eight counts of fraud, Black faces the prospect of much more prison time if convicted on the new charges. They add a maximum 55 years to the potential 40-year jail sentence Black, 61, was already facing.

The new obstruction-of-justice charge relates to the removal of boxes on May 20 from the 10 Toronto St. office of Hollinger Inc., the holding company Black used for years to control Hollinger International.

...

According to the indictment returned yesterday by U.S. District Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, Black, his assistant Joan Maida and chauffeur John Hillier loaded the boxes into the limo, which was then driven away by Black's driver.

Black "corruptly concealed, and attempted to conceal, records, documents, and other objects with the intent to impair their availability for use in official proceedings, namely the (U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission) proceeding against Black, the criminal investigation of Black by a federal grand jury and the pending criminal proceeding against Black before a judge and court of the United States," the indictment charges.

Nailed like a punk slipping a forty-ounce into his Celtics windbreaker.

And don't forget the pride of the College Republicans, Adam Kidan. He, too, is guilty, guilty, guilty:

In August, Mr. Kidan and Mr. Abramoff were named in a six-count federal indictment charging conspiracy, and wire and mail fraud in connection with the purchase of the casino boat company, SunCruz Casinos.

Under the new agreement, Mr. Kidan said he was guilty of lying to lenders, with Mr. Abramoff, to qualify for a $60 million loan to buy the $147.5 million fleet.

The Abramoff in question is philanthropist, op-ed puppeteer and lessee of Conrad Burns' soul, Jack Abramoff.

Messrs. Tobin, Black and Kidan: Coming soon to a federal prison near you.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Josh Marshall is now working blue.

I view this as a positive development.

Roger's Business Section

Whenever you read about the various sleazy dealings about former AIG Chief Executive Maurice Greenberg, make a mental note that the full title is "former AIG C.E.O. and Bush Pioneer Maurice Greenberg." That tidbit never seems to make it into the news reports.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Mickey Kaus will be announcing tomorrow that the Land Rover is too gay for a straight heterosexual woman-liker such as him to enjoy driving.

I, on the other hand, will be happy to purchase a Jaguar ... at a reasonably generous discount.

Well done, John Aravosis and allies!

The Old Burning Cross

Thomas Nelson Publishers is a Christian book publisher. Its mission is "to honor God and serve people." And to "spread God's Word around the globe."

How does Thomas Nelson fulfill its godly mission? By publishing books like this:

The co-author of this godly tome is Robert Stacy McCain, an assistant national editor for the Moonie Times. Nelson describes the contents of the book as follows:

The corruption of the Democratic Party is so pervasive, so routine that each crime in itself is often a mere footnote on the evening news. But taken together, the party's history points up a criminal breeding ground, more than a century old, that incubates corruption, nurtures blind loyalty, and spawns policy decisions rooted in the subversion of liberty and the rule of law.

And how does Robt. Stacy define crime? Here's how:

In an Internet discussion group, McCain had written that Lincoln was a "war criminal" who should have been tried for "treason." On DixieNet, McCain -- using his own name -- had even concocted a mock "Wanted" poster for Lincoln, whom he described as the "1st RULER and TYRANT of the AMERICAN EMPIRE" and a perpetrator of "Murder, False Imprisonment, and numerous HEINOUS crimes against the SOUTHern states and AMERICANS in general!"

So at least he's bipartisan.

And here's McCain professing his Christian love for his fellow man:

"[T]he media now force interracial images into the public mind and a number of perfectly rational people react to these images with an altogether natural revulsion. The white person who does not mind transacting business with a black bank clerk may yet be averse to accepting the clerk as his sister-in-law, and THIS IS NOT RACISM, no matter what Madison Avenue, Hollywood and Washington tell us."

McCain is also an apologist for the murderers of Emmett Till.

Thomas Nelson publishing a Neo-Klansman. Glory be to God in the highest!

Whether Christ would commission a treatise by a lynching enthusiast is a question I'll leave to the pious management of Thomas Nelson. I will, however, comment on the lyncher's credibility. McCain is credited by his publisher with the following quip:

"The Democratic Party is like the Gambino mob with matching federal funds."

If McCain would take his sheet off for long enough to do some research, he'd learn that the political links to Gambino crime family are Republican ones:

Kidan, who has known Abramoff since their student days when they were members of the College Republicans, has agreed to plead guilty to conspiracy and wire fraud in connection with the purchase of the SunCruz fleet in the fall of 2000....

Abramoff and Kidan were indicted in August by a federal grand jury in Fort Lauderdale on five counts of wire fraud and one count of conspiracy relating to their $147.5 million SunCruz purchase. Prosecutors alleged that Abramoff and Kidan faked a wire transfer of $23 million -- the down payment they had agreed to put into the deal. The $23 million became the subject of a dispute between the Abramoff group and Boulis.

Boulis was killed in a gangland-style hit in Fort Lauderdale on Feb. 6, 2001. Three men -- Anthony Moscatiello, Anthony Ferrari and James Fiorillo -- were charged last month in the Boulis murder. Kidan had hired Moscatiello and Ferrari to provide catering and surveillance services to SunCruz.

Moscatiello, identified by authorities as a former bookkeeper for the Gambino crime family, asserted after his arrest that Ferrari had admitted to him that he and another man killed Boulis after getting a call from Kidan, according to court filings. Conway declined to comment on the Moscatiello assertions.

If you want to read a real book about the intersection of politics and crime, wait until Grand Old Police Blotter: The Book is published (and written).

Brokehack Mountin'

Midget Mickey Kaus makes a rather embarassing public pronouncement about his sexuality in explaining why he won't be viewing Brokeback Mountain before it comes out on DVD. An entire gender shudders at the revelation.

P.S. Earlier Kaus whines that "I'll go see it, but I don't want to go see it." (Emphasis in original.) What kind of idiot goes to a movie he doesn't want to see?

P.P.S. If Kaus followed his own logic, there's only one film he's enjoyed in the last 50 years.

Funny. You never would have guessed that someone who spoke of his love for Kurt Waldheim at his wedding would have such a crabbed view of redemption.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Grand Old Police Blotter: Boiled Ass Edition

Another victory for law and order and another loss for criminals and terrorists. CNN reports:

WEST PALM BEACH, Florida (AP) -- Prosecutors can subpoena Rush Limbaugh's doctors as part an investigation into whether the conservative radio commentator illegally bought painkillers, a judge ruled Monday.

Judge David F. Crow ruled that Florida laws do not prevent doctors from talking with prosecutors if the discussion is relevant to the prosecution of a crime.

The decision gave prosecutors permission to subpoena doctors and their staff, but it also protected confidential material in Limbaugh's medical records.

The judge noted that Florida law prohibits the discussion of a patient's medical condition and information disclosed by a patient during treatment.

Actually, press accounts about the ruling are of the "both sides claim victory" variety. I'd like to see the actual ruling to determine who won what.

However, Big Pharma is clearly a big loser, since he didn't get the subpoenas quashed, which is what he asked for, and undoubtedly Roy Black is building his third or fourth home with the proceeds of the junkie's legal fees.

As for CNN, I'd recommend a Sunday night special, cohosted by Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Daryn Kagan. Call it "Rush, Portrait Of A Washed-Up Junkie."

Monday, December 12, 2005

Busy evening. Will return tomorrow.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Uncommon Stupidity

What is it with morons at The Corner and their "blegs"? Peter Robinson, the f*cking idiot who hosted the Hoover Institution crapfest, "Uncommon Knowledge," on PBS, blegs for a holiday tree preservative reicipe he could have found in 1.3 seconds by using Google.

I bet Peter had to have Peggy Noonan unzip his fly for him whenever he needed to take a piss in the Reagan White House.

p.s. to Peter: The Clorox and aspirin cocktail was intended for you.

Nyuk, Nyuk, Nyuk

Saturday, December 10, 2005

The War On Christmas: The Christmas Schlong Edition

Wingnuts blowing with their pants afire
Jackoffs yipping on their shows
Yuletide myths being spun by a liar
And Fox hosts sniffing their dil ... does
Everybody knows ...

It's time to take out the terrorists' Number 2, Mullah Oreilly.

Devout Christians might be troubled that their self-appointed spokesperson is a man who boasted that his best present ever was a vibrator "shaped like a little cock with a battery in it." I certainly can sympathize with that sentiment, and I'm happy to help them out.

Since the War on Christmas is a pacifist movement, the only way to take O'Reilly off the battlefield is to distract him. In that spirit, we are launching the first annual Toys for Clots campaign. If enough people send sexual devices and other "adult" playthings to Sick Willie, he'll be too preoccupied to take up the sword of self-righteousness ... other than to impale himself on it, if you catch my drift.

The address is:

Toys for Clots
c/o The O'Reilly Factor
FOX News Channel
1211 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036

Won't you please help a desperately needy man have the Best Christmas Ever?

(Disclaimer: I suspect if anyone did this, O'Reilly would accuse him or her with threatening him or being the anthrax killer or the like, and some unpleasant circumstances might result. Plus, it would never get past his handlers and orderlies, and would just offend some innocent folks who are already suffering due to their proximity to the noxious gasbag. So, you didn't hear this from me.)

(And my apologies to Mel Torme and Robert Wells, wherever they are.)

Roger's Reader Participation

A captioning contest:

Foxtopussy

Surely you can do better than that.

(My original caption, "The Homecoming Queen's Got A Gun," was rejected on the ground that it could be misunderstood as homophobic.)

Inspired, through no fault of his, by James Wolcott.

(Image via Barnesandnoble.com.)

Things About Which I Have No Opinion

C.S. Lewis, The Chronicles of Narnia, the lion, the witch and/or the wardrobe.

Blogging Now Officially Lame

I'm sure many people already have commented upon this, but I just noticed that the New York Times has started a blog. And I'm not talking about those grudgingly written, lame-ass Times Select columnist responses to e-mail that are being passed off as blogs.

Just three days ago, the Times' David Carr started a motion picture awards blog called The Carpetbagger. (Get it? "Awards" ... "Red Carpet" ... "Two-Bagger" ... "Bagger Vance" ...) And Carr is already using the word "meme." My advice to Dave -- "pace yourself." You don't want too many posts too early about whether King Kong will take home a Hollywood Foreign Press Association Award for Original Song. You'll just end up repeating yourself.

And I've no idea whether there are intellectual property issues involved -- I'll have to consult Open Source Media Media's crack legal team -- but you'd think the Times would show a little more courtesy -- and originality -- and not tread so heavily upon The Carpetbagger Report's good name.

I mean, what reputable blogger would try a cheap stunt like that?

The Persecution of Holy Joe

"I give Operation Iraqi Crusade one thumb up!"

It's not exactly plagiarism, but the lead sentences in the NYT and WaPo front-page articles on Holy Joe are eerily similar, even for a description of the same phenomenon:

The Times:

Five years after running as the vice-presidential nominee on the Democratic ticket and a year after his own presidential bid, Senator Joseph I. Lieberman of Connecticut has become an increasingly unwelcome figure within his party, with some Democrats seeing him more as a wayward son than a favorite son.

The Post:

Five years ago, Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman was one of President Bush's arch political rivals. Now many in his party complain that he sounds more like Bush's running mate.

Here are my problems with Lieberman and his apologists such as the Bullshit Moose, who constantly reminds, but fails to convince, everyone or anyone of his own maturity.

First, the Joe-as-victim tale is sheer farce. The "some" or "many" Dems referred to in the articles were responding to Holy Joe's suggestion that Dems were "undermining [Bush's] credibility at their own peril." (Dems undermining Bush's credibility? Talk about coals to Newcastle.)

It was Lieberman who signed his name to the Wall Street Journal opinion piece asserting his "disappoint[ment] with Democrats" for criticizing Bush and insinuating that dissent was demoralizing the troops. Were the Dems he disparaged supposed to stay silent about that libel just to create a false image of party unity? Lieberman chose to pick a fight; he and his anthropomorphic apologists shouldn't whine when he got one.

More importantly, Lieberman deserves to be criticized for his own role in Iraqi debacle and the the death and destruction he demanded. He's not just an Administration apologist, he's covering his own ass for three years of failed warmongering. Lieberman can't criticize Bush without admitting his own complicity in American aggression. That's why his piece in the Journal is filled with happy-crappy fairy tales of progress and demands for more sacrifice from others.

As for the bogus claim that criticism of the Holy Virgin Joe and/or Operation Iraqi Crusade will relegate Dems to permanent minority status, the claimants need only look to the enforcement of party loyalty (or, more accurately, loyalty to Bush) and ideological purity in the Republican Party. Rovian/DeLaian discipline may well be the Pukes' undoing in 2006 and 2008, but it sure as hell didn't prevent the Pukes from gaining control of the White House and Congress and doing immeasurable damage to the Nation. Pointing out that Bush is a miserable failure and that his war is a corrupt and disastrous adventure will harm Dems at the polls almost as much as pointing out that the sky is blue and increasingly full of carcinogens.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Charles Krauthammer Advocates Killing Dogs, Demands New Choreographer For Show Trial

Let's Talk About Sex With Mona Charen

Molna Charen has become enchanted with Modestlyyours.net, a website for the New Virginity. Founded by the non-plagiarizing Shalit, Wendy, the site apparently features a blog where modest women can talk about how modest they are while ignoring one meaning of the word modest.

Molna says certain women are to blame for today's "trash culture" -- and Lindsay Lohan's skankiness -- because they wanted equal rights. Follow along at home, won't you?

Women did this to themselves of course, by signing on to the sexual revolution in the '60s and '70s. The feminists thought they were achieving equality with men. They got something else altogether. Another blog entry on the site mentions that the writer's 16-year-old nephew gets offers of oral sex from his female classmates on a somewhat regular basis. Ah, yes, sisterhood is powerful ain't it?

Hell, when I was sixteen I was getting blowjobs from my classmates, and my teachers (the hot ones), and that divorcee down the block -- but I wasn't chatting about it with my aunt.

Thank you, feminists and sexual revolutionaries, for making it okay to have candid discussions about cocksucking with your parents' sisters!

Molna glides over the fact the women involved with the site have interesting and diverse careers and opportunities, no doubt due in part to the efforts of those fucking feminists of yesteryear. As do another hundred million women who don't give a shit what Charen thinks about their choices.

Teal: The Stupidest Color In The Rainbow

There's no stunt so moronic that a Republican staffer won't engage in it -- and fail miserably. The moral here is: Never trust a Republican with the password to your website.

A Republican operative has admitted collecting identity data from a political Web log - a practice the state Republican Party earlier had blamed on Democrats.

This week, the GOP warned state party members that someone was compiling the online identities [sic] of visitors to the Web site coloradopols.com. The site is a popular political blog that invites comments from its readers, who can post their thoughts using nicknames.

The warning pointed the finger at Democrats, but e-mail records show that Laura Teal, a Republican, and two acquaintances actually were the ones involved.

...

Teal is a campaign staffer for gubernatorial candidate Marc Holtzman. She said her efforts occurred prior to taking that post and had nothing to do with Holtzman's campaign.
The operators of the website gave Teal password access to participate as a contributor. And how did she repay them? By trying to disclose their identities.

Teal is asserting a stupidity defense:

Ultimately, Teal said, she and the others were not able to identify the blog's anonymous authors and gave up.

I knew Manny Miranda. Manny Miranda was a lying sack of shit. Laura, you're no Manny Miranda.

(Link via Buzzflash)

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Who says torture doesn't get results?

It got hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and 2,100 American soldiers killed.

Grand Old Police Blotter: College Mafia Edition

The College Republicans should be shut down as some sort of criminal enterprise.

In today's NYT, Bobo Brooks wrote (I paraphrase): When the Republican Party was the party of ideas, it attracted a lot of oddballs. Now that it is the party in power, it attracts a lot of sleazeballs. I say the Republicans attracted a lot of sleazeballs when it was the supposedly the party of ideas; they were just impotent sleazeballs until the Republicans gained control of Congress.

Case in point: Abramoff, Reed, Norquist et al. all started out as College Republicans. And then there's this.this:

Federal prosecutors have all but finalized a plea agreement with a second business partner of former lobbyist Jack Abramoff in exchange for cooperation in the ongoing criminal investigations of Abramoff, congressional aides and Rep. Robert W. Ney (R-Ohio), lawyers in the case said yesterday.

Adam Kidan, a longtime confidant of Abramoff's, has agreed to testify against Abramoff in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., next month when he is to face trial on fraud and conspiracy charges in connection with their purchase of a fleet of Florida casino boats. A Kidan plea would tie Abramoff's legal troubles in Florida more closely to the Washington investigation into his lobbying practices, pressuring Abramoff to reach a deal of his own that could implicate members of Congress and other government officials, lawyers involved in the case said.

...

Kidan, who has known Abramoff since their student days when they were members of the College Republicans, has agreed to plead guilty to conspiracy and wire fraud in connection with the purchase of the SunCruz fleet in the fall of 2000.

It's time for the next phase: Prison Republicans.

The War On Christmas: Blood Libel Edition

Bert Prelutsky, the Jewish Jim West, spills the beans on the greater threat to this country:

I am getting the idea that too many Jews won't be happy until they pull off their own version of the Spanish Inquisition, forcing Christians to either deny their faith and convert to agnosticism or suffer the consequences.

Prelutsky also reveals "the dirty little secret in America," namely, "that anti-Semitism is no longer a problem in society; it's been replaced by a rampant anti-Christianity." (Hey, Burt, did you forget that all criticism of neocons is anti-Semitic?)

Burt's right. Macy's is collecting the names of those who mention Christmas in its stores, and we're going to round those bastards up and burn 'em at the stake on the first day of Hanukkah.