Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Grand Old Police Blotter: Safavian Flu Edition

It's slammer time for the Bush Administration's Chief of Staff at the G.S.A.:

"The trial consumed eight days of testimony about Safavian's assistance to Abramoff regarding government-owned real estate and a weeklong golfing excursion the lobbyist organized to the famed St. Andrews golf course in Scotland and London.

"Safavian went on the trans-Atlantic trip while he was chief of staff at the GSA, and other participants included Rep. Bob Ney, R-Ohio, two Ney aides and Christian Coalition founder Ralph Reed.

"The jury found Safavian guilty of obstructing the work of the GSA inspector general and of lying to a GSA ethics official. It also convicted him of lying to the GSA's Office of Inspector General and of making a false statement to the Senate Indian Affairs Committee. He was acquitted of a charge of obstructing the committee's investigation."
It's not the Culture of Corruption; it's the Administration of Corruption. (And the Criminalization of Criminality.)

Bob Ney and Ralph Reed have got severe cases of the Safavian Flu this morning.

Story via Atrios.

Blogging Is The New Retyping Press Releases

From Sully.TimeMagazine.Com:

Quote for the Day
19 Jun 2006 04:51 pm

"I think South Dakota is going to be a huge, probably hard education for what I would call the hard-line pro-life forces ... A lot of people are going to be surprised at what they do when they have to go into that polling place, where no one's watching. How many of them are pro-life themselves but just won't pull the lever in favor of the law?" -- Neil Fulton, a South Dakota lawyer who describes himself as a pro-life practicing Catholic, in the New Yorker.

The magazine has a big piece on South Dakota's looming ballot decision on banning all abortions, including those incurred by [sic] rape and incest. Author Cynthia Gorney's Q and A on the piece can be read here.

From an e-mail press release from The New Yorker, Mon, 19 Jun 2006 10:33 AM:

Now, with a popular vote almost guaranteed to appear on the ballot in November, Neil Fulton, a South Dakota lawyer who describes himself as a pro-life practicing Catholic, tells Gorney, "I think South Dakota is going to be a huge, probably hard education for what I would call the hard-line pro-life forces.... A lot of people are going to be surprised at what they do when they have to go into that polling place, where no one's watching. How many of them are pro-life themselves but just won't pull the lever in favor of the law?"

...

The June 26, 2006, issue of The New Yorker goes on sale at newsstands beginning Monday, June 19th. Selections from the magazine, as well as additional features, including a Q&A with Cynthia Gorney, are available at www.newyorker.com.

And you thought that blogging was hard work. These things almost write themselves!

Cracking The DeCracker Code

In an issue on blogs, The New Republic finally recognizes that InstaCracker is as deep as dishwater:

But [InstaCracker] exposes how the blogosphere, at its worst, values timeliness over thought. After linking to an article on congressional earmarks, he'll add, "Well, that's encouraging. Sheesh." Quod erat demonstrandum. Or he'll carp, "Nancy Pelosi, on the other hand, is just dumb" -- a point that may be perfectly true but probably requires some explanation or proof beyond the simple assertion. In the end, this method provides the intellectual horsepower of, say, an Andy Rooney commentary. To wit, he wrote in December, "A battery recall on the XM portables. Is it just me, or are we seeing more battery recalls lately." Well, no need for The New York Times, then.

Bonus trivia: The 'Cracker began his reign of error in 2001 by "posting messages under a variety of handles like 'AGAndroid' in 'the Fray,' the readers' forum for the online magazine Slate." An early adapter in both trolling and advanced poindexterism.

Monday, June 19, 2006

The Criminalization of Crime

I see that Short Joey DiGs is leading the bandwagon for a Presidential pardon of Scooter Libby. By what must be the most remarkable coincidence ever, Bill Kristol was pushing the same agenda on Fox News Sunday. Thug minds think alike.

p.s. to Josh Marshall: What's up with the advertising on your face? I hope you're getting extra for that.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Joe Lieberman: Victim of Crusading Jihadists

"I know I'm taking a position that is not popular within the party," Lieberman said, "but that is a challenge for the party -- whether it will accept diversity of opinion or is on a kind of crusade or jihad of its own to have everybody toe the line. No successful political party has ever done that."

Seems to me that having a pro-war candidate and an anti-war candidate running against each other within a party is about accepting diversity of opinion. No one's kicked your ass out of the party or kept your name off the ballot, Joe.

p.s. to "the Dean," if you want to know whether someone's going to do something and you're interviewing him, you ask him.

Speaking of Hit A Cop, Suffer The Consequences...

Whatever happened to this desperado?


More Whining From Bigots

Much pantspissing and whining in blogosphere this week about the failure to indict.

I speak, of course, of "Captain" Ed Morrisey, who, blogging from his hospital bed, applies his double-digit i.q. to the case of Representative Cynthia McKinney.

First, the story:

A grand jury has declined to indict Rep. Cynthia McKinney of Georgia for allegedly striking a Capitol police officer in March, the federal prosecutor announced Friday.

The decision ends a case against the DeKalb County Democrat that has been rife with political and racial tensions.

"It is right, just and appropriate," McKinney's attorney, William Moffitt, said of the decision, which he learned about from reporters. "I'm ecstatic."

McKinney, arriving Friday night for the Boost Mobile Rock Corps concert at Atlanta's Fox Theatre, entered without responding to reporters's [sic] questions.

The decision comes more than two months after the Washington Superior Court grand jury was first given the case. U.S. Attorney Ken Wainstein called the investigation by his office and Capitol police "extensive and thorough."

"We respect the decision of the grand jury in this difficult matter," Wainstein said in a statement.

Now, the bloated blogger (warning -- link to an idiot):

In the meantime, someone should get a copy of the dictionary to the grand jury and a Toastmasters club membershio [sic] for the US attorney. If someone hits a police officer with a cell phone while he is performing his duties, and witnesses and even the suspect confirms it, how can that not rise to the level of "probable cause"?

How? Let me count the ways: Accident, lack of intent, self-defense, reasonable self-defense.

Poor, stupid dumbfuck. He simply can't understand that the unverified crap he reads on NewsMax and Instacracker and the drivellings of his commenters isn't a substitute for actual evidence. Of course, Special Ed wasn't present at the incident, doesn't know what evidence was presented and doesn't know what the grand jury knew or thought. But that doesn't stop the dumbfuck from suggesting the grand jury was too Negroid to understand the law and the facts: "Race baiting was the only defense McKinney could offer," says the dishonest seaman stain.

Of course, Ed's commenters take the hint and join in the hate parade:

I think James Joyner at OTB hit the nail on the head, reminding us that, "[t]his is the same jury pool that acquitted Marion Berry on two sets of felony charges and then reelected him twice."

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

And they wonder why we don't treat them with respect.

I doubt "they" wonder that at all.

p.s. to doubleplus dumbfuck James Joyner: Marion Berry is a U.S. Representative from Arkansas, not the former Mayor of D.C. And I won't even bother to point out all the other inaccuracies in the single sentence, "This is the same jury pool that acquitted Marion Berry on two sets of felony charges and then reelected him twice."

The Punch Line

CONVICTED LAWMAKER TIED TO CONTRACT AWARD. The Department of Homeland Security acknowledged for the first time Friday that a former congressman convicted on bribery charges played a role in awarding a $20-million contract to a limousine company with ties to the ex-lawmaker, Newsday's J. Jioni Palmer reports from Washington. After weeks of denying that Randy Cunningham, a California Republican, lobbied federal officials on behalf of Shirlington Limousine and Transportation, the department informed congressional investigators it had recently uncovered correspondence from Cunningham. That admission came two days after it was first reported in Newsday that Shirlington's owner, Christopher Baker, said Cunningham submitted a letter of recommendation on his behalf. "This is yet another example of DHS incompetence," said Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford), chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee.
Give that man a rimshot.

Actually, it's yet another example of Republican and Bush Administration corruption. And neither is incompetent when it comes to corruption.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Klanboy In Their Midst

If you believe him, the attendees at the YearlyKos included that stealthy Son of A Klansman, Wes Pruden.

Wesley's decapitation gag is particularly precious coming from second generation lynching enthusiast.

Apparently Pruden left with his head in place, having cleverly concealed it within his rectum at all times.

All the flophouses on the Strip had better recount their sheets.

The Look Of Love

Yes, it's a stupid caption contest.

(If I was Yahoo!, I would have gone for "Snow Evacuates McClellan")

(No, given his associations, "Goldbergs" is more appropriate.)

Monday, June 12, 2006

If you want to see Howie Kurtz making a putz of himself, read on:

KURTZ: We are just getting word from the National Hurricane Center that Alberto has been upgraded to a tropical storm, the first of the 2006 hurricane season. Alberto is about 400 miles west of Key West, Florida. We'll be tracking that for you in the coming days.

All right. Looks like Amanda Congdon, she looks like a TV anchor, well, except for the T-shirt, but she's not any network. Her daily program called "Rocketboom" is a video blog recorded in a tiny Manhattan apartment and is seen online by an average of 300,000 people which is more than most local newscasts and higher than the circulation of many newspapers. Rocketboom, has, shall we say, a unique sensibility.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

AMANDA CONGDON, ROCKETBOOM.COM: I feel like the 6:00 news just ain't cutting it for you? Maybe it's because they often take so long to discuss irrelevant facts when all you really need to know is in the headline. Let's see how fast we can plow through all of this info.

Praying woman struck by lightning. See, you can wonder why all you want, but that's all you need to know. Praying woman, struck by lightning.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KURTZ: And Amanda Congdon joins us now from San Francisco. Welcome.

CONGDON: Hello.

KURTZ: We'll start with a personal question. How old are you?

It goes on like that for 8-10 minutes.

I highly recommend you read the whole thing.

And try not to think about what Howie was practicing in front of the mirror.

Why Does John Derbyshire Hate America?

Because it's filled with women, immigrants, non-whites and homosexuals.

John Derbyshite has come out against the Iraq war. He writes:

"Getting on for 3,000 of our troops have been killed, and close to 20,000 maimed. We've spent untold billions of dollars. For what?"

Don't worry, though. Derbs doesn't hate the troops -- or at least not the straight white male ones -- or straight white male America. To be more accurate, Derbyshite's gotten bored with the war, since it turns out the war hasn't been the Muslim Holocaust he'd hoped and prayed and voted for.

No kidding.

"So why am I eating crow? Because I think it was foolish of me to suppose that the administration would act with the punitive ruthlessness I hoped to see. The rubble-and-out approach was not one that this administration, or perhaps any administration in the present state of our culture, would be willing to pursue. The universalist dogmas that rule unchallenged in our media and educational institutions have fixed their grip on our foreign policy, too. When the Founders of our nation said 'all men' they had in mind Christian Anglo-Saxon men. Our leaders, though, want to bring the whole world under the scope of those grand Lockeian principles."

A Muslim Holocaust, pure and simple.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

The Six Month Itch

Shorter Tom "My Learning Curve Is Flat" Friedman:

When I said "the next six months will tell us a lot," I meant that the outcome was unclear.

From today's Reliable Sources:

KURTZ: Now, I want to understand how a columnist's mind works when you take positions, because you were chided recently for writing several times in different occasions "the next six months are crucial in Iraq," the next six months. And now you've written a column saying that Americans are simply not going to tolerate this kind of anarchy for another two years and deadlines have to be set. Were you conscious that you were now shifting your position on this?

FRIEDMAN: Not really. You know, the problem with analyzing the story, Howie, is that it doesn't -- everyone, first of all, this is the most polarized story I've certainly written about, so everyone wants, basically, to be proven right, OK? So the left -- people who hated the war, they want you to declare the war is over, finish, we give up. The right, just the opposite. But I've been trying to just simply track the situation on the ground. And the fact is that the outcome there is unclear, and I reflected that in my column. And I will continue to reflect.

KURTZ: Unclear, but you're running out of patience?

FRIEDMAN: Well, it's not that I'm running out of patience. The story's evolving. And what strikes me as I see it evolve, when it drags on, six months after an election we still don't have a government. Then, as a columnist who's offering opinions on what I think the right policy is, it seems to me we have to be telling Iraqis we are not going to be here forever, providing a kind of floor under the chaos, while you dicker over the most minute things when American lives are at stake. So I think it's a constantly evolving thing.
Unlike your bullshit, Tom, which multiplies exponentially.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Viva Las Kosovars!

I had a terribly interesting post about YearlyKos and the forthcoming coverage of it on C-SPAN and a bunch of hilariously snide remarks about the people mentioned in this post:

A CAP-sponsored seminar on media appearances this morning saw the second row populated by The Weekly Standard's Matt Labash, The National Review's Byron York, and The American Prospect's me. Also darting in and out of the session were The New Republic's Ryan Lizza, Time's Ana Marie-Cox (sic), Salon's Michael Scherer, a Chicago Tribune reporter, and Maureen Dowd. And this was not, mind you, a large room.

But Blogger ate it, without warning.

And now we're all paying the price.

Invisible Man

What happened to Armstrong Williams' long-awaited tome, The New Racists: How Liberal Democrats Have Betrayed Minority Americans?

It was originally due out in January 2006, as reflected in this February 2005 report from World O'Crap.

Then, tragedy struck, and the publication date was pushed back a month:

His book, The New Racists, is scheduled for February 2006 release by Eagle Publishing Co., an imprint of Regnery Publishing, said publicist Patricia Jackson.

She said a subtitle for Williams's book was pending. However, on the Amazon.com Web site, this subtitle is listed: How Liberal Democrats Have Betrayed Minority Americans. (The retail price is $27.95 and the ISBN is 0-895-26018-2.) Jackson said the information posted on Amazon would be removed while the editing is being completed and reposted once the subtitle is confirmed.

Williams said his recast manuscript, post-No Child Left Behind controversy, means, "I have taken a critical look at the Republican and Democratic parties and what we all can do to make both parties better, how we can move beyond race and how race has become an industry Democrats and Republicans benefit from."

Yet the book was still publicized with the "old" subtitle on Amazon.com as late as March 2006.

Now, the book has disappeared from Amazon.com altogther. (It's still purportedly available here, with a July 2006 publication date and the old subtitle. I wouldn't send in the money without checking on its availability, but that's me.)

But I can't find any reference to the book on the Regnery site. Williams does not appear in either the Meet Our Authors section or the Complete Catalog section.

I guess the Old Racists at Regnery didn't like what they read.

Twilight of the Hammer of the Gods

The Tiny Toxic Texan exits, not with a bang, but with a whimper:

"Given the chance to do it all again, there's only one thing I'd change," DeLay said in a defiant retirement speech on the House floor. "I'd fight even harder."

Save it for prison, Bugchaser.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Namely, IOKIYAR

Washington Post (6/7/06):

"Tom DeLay has never taken an official act that was not based on his strongly held principles," Cullen said. Buckham and his attorney did not return several telephone calls seeking comment.

Results

Congratulations to my close personal friend, Jerry Brown; my close personal friend, the tax-and-spend, polluting developer, Phil Angelides; and, in CA 50, the Culture of Corruption.

Details here.

We now return to less parochial concerns.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Follow the California returns here.

I'm going to guess turnout was low. I showed up at my polling place at around 8:30 a.m. and I was only the fourteenth voter.

Monday, June 05, 2006

For Those About To Vote, We Salute You

An unnecessary reminder from your friends at Roger Ailes.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

At The American Prospect, Charles Pierce cancels John Miller's membership in the Columbia Record and 8-Track Tape Club:

It allowed Miller to establish once again NR's longstanding affection for the Confederate States of America with the inevitable "Sweet Home Alabama" and The Band's "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down." While it's true that old WFB stood in spirit always with "the guv'nah" in that schoolhouse door, it's also plain that Miller can't possibly ever have listened to the devastation in Levon Helm's voice. Secession, as my friend, Roy Blount, once wrote, was a bad idea at the time and looks even worse in retrospect. Also, it's interesting that Confederate nostalgia rates so high as a conservative value that it rates two songs. None dare call it treason, I guess.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Nashville Killers

You'll not read about this domestic cache of WMDs on the wingnut blogs, but only because the man in custody passes the skintone test:

NASHVILLE -- FBI hazardous material experts searched a home where police found pipe bombs and a jar containing the potentially deadly poison ricin, federal agents said Friday.

The ricin was found in a baby food jar Wednesday in a shed of the home owned by a man who went to jail last week for violating protection orders taken out by his estranged wife, according to local and federal officials.

...

The homeowner, 55-year-old William Micheal Matthews, had not been charged Friday in connection with the bombs or ricin. His wife Carole had sought the protection orders while he was being treated for substance abuse, officials said.

It was Carole Matthews, who still lives at the home, who told police to search the shed, where authorities also found five gun silencers and bomb-making materials.

Of course, if Matthews had a Pakistani roommate, the virtual lynching party already would have begun. Maybe the neighbor with the suspicious name (see end of article) will get their juices flowing.

Hell, Instacracker will probably declare this guy a Second Amendment martyr, while Phyllis Schafly makes him a posterboy for the men's rights movement.

Get Out The Hate

The G.O.P. has kicked off its national campaign for the '06 elections with a get-out-the-hate rally at the White House. Given his miserable failures, both foreign and domestic, it's not surprising that Bush is attacking marriage equality in a desparate effort to prevent Democratic control of Congress.

The funny part is the rabid religious right playing its own anticipation game, setting up Bush to take the fall in the fall:

"I'm going to go and hear what he says, but we already know it is a ruse," said Joe Glover, president of the Family Policy Network, which opposes gay marriage. "We're not buying it. We're going to go and watch the dog-and-pony show, [but] it's too little, too late."

See, if the Democrats prevail in the fall, it's not that the electorate rejected hate, it's that they rejected Bush for not hating enough. That'll keep the checks coming in to the Family Policy Network and the myth of the moral majority on life support.

p.s. to Joe: The dog-and-pony show is over at Senator Santorum's office, 511 Dirksen Senate Office Building.

Frodo Libs

This bit in article about Jim "Big Love" Galley (R-San Diego) caught my eye:

Galley's Republican opponent is Blake Miles, a teacher from El Centro. Dan "Frodo" Litwin, a San Diego software project manager, is the sole Libertarian in the race.
I love a cliche.

Here's Dan's website. Dan's "influences range from Jimi Hendrix and Carlos Santana to Ben Franklin and Harry Browne." And J.R.R. Tolkien.

Hey, at least his nickname isn't Dagney.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Soldier of Fortune

Jed Babbin, human shitstain and former Bush I flunky, makes this odious statement in the midst of an odious argument about the potential tragic consequences of Haditha on the Bush II Administration and Republican party:

If it were up to Cong. John Murtha, Duke University rape case prosecutor Mike Nifong would be transferred to the Haditha case. Fortunately for both the victim and the accused, the military justice system doesn't satisfy media hunger for the bread and circuses of civilian criminal trials.

Yes, that's the first piece of good fortune the victims of Haditha have received since the bullets penetrated their brains. You should be so fortunate, Jed.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Grand Old Police Blotter: Dealer Noe Deal Edition

How do you recognize a Bush Pioneer? His pasty white face clashes with his orange jumpsuit.

Yet another Bush Pioneer confesses to his crimes against the public:

TOLEDO, Ohio - A coin dealer and prominent GOP fundraiser at the center of an Ohio political scandal pleaded guilty Wednesday to federal charges he illegally funneled about $45,000 to President Bush's re-election campaign.

Tom Noe, once a powerful political figure who also raised money for Ohio Republicans, still is charged with embezzlement in an ill-fated $50 million coin investment that he managed for the state workers' compensation fund.

The investment scandal has been a major embarrassment for Ohio's ruling Republicans and given Democrats a better shot at winning state offices this year, including the governor's office, which has been under GOP control since 1991.

Investigators do not know whether Noe used money from the state coin fund for campaign contributions.

Uh, you might want to look into that when you get a sec. That is, unless (a) you don't want to know the answer or (b) you already know the answer.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Memorial

Here's the New York Times' article on Bush's Memorial Day speech at Arlington National Cemetery. I'm not going to comment on the speech, which I watched on C-SPAN.

Prior to the speech, when an announcer introduced Bush and Rummy (separately) over a public address system, what sounded like a large number of people whooped or whistled in addition to applauding.

The purpose of the ceremony is to remember and honor those who died serving the United States through military service. It took place in a cemetery. Immediately following the placement of a memorial wreath on a tomb.

What the fuck were these people thinking?

The "S" Is For Snuff

Currently on the MSN.com homepage:

Suggested Searches

Tropical forests

Maui's Fleming Beach

Videotaped killing

Dracula Castle

Record hammerhead

Barren Rhetoric

"Go hire ye a direct-marketing subcontractor to go unto all the world and preach the Gospel of sweatshop labour unto all creatures." (Ralph 16:15 (KJV))

Lisa Baron, a spokeswoman for Reed's campaign, said Millennium Marketing "was hired as a direct-mail subcontractor to assist in encouraging grass-roots citizens to promote the propagation of the gospel."

"As a defender of the unborn, Ralph was unaware of any allegations regarding inhumane or illegal treatment of workers, and he would strongly object to such practices, if true," she added.
But as long as Ralph kept himself in the dark about the prostitution and slavery, as a defender of the unborn, his conscience was clean.

Roger's Book Sac

Does the Doughy Pantload's ghost writer have writer's block? According to amazon.com, Jonah Goldberg's forthcoming tome, I Heart Hitler, is not due out until March 20, 2007. The cover art for the book, featuring a self-portrait by Goldberg's mother, was finished at least seven months ago.

How long can it take the Pantload's ghost to cut-and-paste 272 pages of crap from the internet? Even Former-Liberal-Looking-For-A-Book-Deal and UFO-ologist Keith Thompson's book, Snubbed At a Dinner Party, will be out by October.

May I instead recommend Michael Berube's book, which is coming out in September? A book written by someone's whose written more books than Goldberg has read - imagine that!

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Texass

"One of the attractive things about the president is that he talks Texas," Mr. Bennett continued. "But what broke my heart is when he said, 'I need to be more sophisticated.' What is this, Kerry talk? Is he going to use 'elan' the next time he speaks?"

If anything breaks your heart, Bill, it's gonna be those five cheeseburgers you have for your post-breakfast snack.

Who says Father Fat Tim G.E. Pumpkinhead Russert isn't fair? He's balancing last week's "exclusive" inter-Republican debate on immigration with another "exclusive" inter-Republican debate on immigration.

Sunday, May 28
Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-NE, & House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. James Sensenbrenner, R-WI, on Immigration. Then a roundtable with David Broder, David Ignatius, Kate O'Beirne, Eugene Robinson.

Can't say fairer than that!

Senator Kerry Fights Back

Against the Swift Boat Liars:

"They lied and lied and lied about everything," Mr. Kerry says in an interview in his Senate office. "How many lies do you get to tell before someone calls you a liar? How many times can you be exposed in America today?"
Sorry, John, but like the "war" against terror, you're engaged in a war without end. And you're right, you should have fought these scumbags harder in 2004.

Update: A rhetorical question. How many of those invoking
the presumption of innocence with respect to the November 2005 events in Haditha -- which allegedly involved the shooting of girls aged 1, 3 and 5, among others -- are the same douchebags who feigned outrage in response to the bullshit claim that Senator Kerry shot a fleeing, half-naked Vietnamese teenage boy in the back?

Friday, May 26, 2006

An Atrocity

Representative John Kline, a Minnesota Republican who is a retired Marine colonel, said that the allegations indicated that "this was not an accident. This was direct fire by marines at civilians." He added, "This was not an immediate response to an attack. This would be an atrocity."

Kind of like dropping thousands of bombs among civilians, but less telegenic.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Media Stories Howard Kurtz Can't Be Bothered With, Part The First

Whaddya waitin' for, Howie, a call from Karl Rove's publicist?

The Spew From Sully's Window

You can tell a lot about an idiot from the witlessness of his blog posts. Today, Sully quotes the following Q & A (from Crazy Davy's e-rag) with free market blow-up doll John Stossel:

Q: That puts you at odds with both liberals and conservatives. Which side hates you or dislikes you more -- liberals or conservatives? You are in favor of legalizing drugs, you're not against abortion -- things like that would annoy conservatives. But you're also in favor of free-market solutions to just about everything, from schools to buses.

STOSSEL: I think homosexuality is all right. And yet the conservatives will pay me a $40,000 speaking fee -- which goes to charity, by the way -- and invite me to their events and have me on their shows. But the liberals will have nothing to do with me.

Sully then pipes up:

You can tell a lot about a movement by whether it is mainly interested in finding converts or heretics. Neither side is blameless in this; but the lefties would be more convincing in their appeals for tolerance if they engaged in more of it themselves.

Gee, Sully, did you ever consider that "lefties" might take Stossel's self-promotion more seriously if he applied his purported myth-busting skills to, say, debunking Bill Bennett's statistical lies about the life expectancy of gay men, or bogus claims linking abortion to breast cancer (or about the risks of RU-486), or the Office of Drug Control Policy's scare tactics regarding marijuana? Somehow The Stosser and 20/20 never find the time to bust such fascist fairy tales.

As for the relative merits of the liberal and conservative "movements," I'd say you can tell a lot more about a movement by whether it's stupid enough to pay $40,000 to hear a speech by a journalistic fraud.

Tone Def

The New York Times has published National Review's list of Top 50 Right-Wing Rock Songs. Since the list will disappear behind the Times' pay wall in a day or two, I'll reproduce it here, without John J. Miller's insipid commentary (which can be summarized as: only economic libertarians and social fascists are conservatives):

1. "Won't Get Fooled Again," by The Who
2. "Taxman," by The Beatles
3. "Sympathy for the Devil," by The Rolling Stones
4. "Sweet Home Alabama," by Lynyrd Skynyrd
5. "Wouldn't It Be Nice," by The Beach Boys
6. "Gloria," by U2
7. "Revolution," by The Beatles
8. "Bodies," by The Sex Pistols
9. "Don't Tread on Me," by Metallica
10. "20th Century Man," by The Kinks
11. "The Trees," by Rush
12. "Neighborhood Bully," by Bob Dylan
13. "My City Was Gone," by The Pretenders
14. "Right Here, Right Now," by Jesus Jones
15. "I Fought the Law," by The Crickets
16. "Get Over It," by The Eagles
17. "Stay Together for the Kids," by Blink 182
18. "Cult of Personality," by Living Colour
19. "Kicks," by Paul Revere and the Raiders
20. "Rock the Casbah," by The Clash
21. "Heroes," by David Bowie
22. "Red Barchetta," by Rush
23. "Brick," by Ben Folds Five
24. "Der Kommissar," by After the Fire
26. "Capitalism," by Oingo Boingo
27. "Obvious Song," by Joe Jackson
28. "Janie's Got a Gun," by Aerosmith
29. "Rime of the Ancient Mariner," by Iron Maiden
30. "You Can't Be Too Strong," by Graham Parker
32. "Keep Your Hands to Yourself," by The Georgia Satellites
33. "You Can't Always Get What You Want," by The Rolling Stones
34. "Godzilla," by Blue Oyster Cult
35. "Who'll Stop the Rain," by Creedence Clearwater Revival
36. "Government Cheese," by The Rainmakers
37. "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down," by The Band
38. "I Can't Drive 55," by Sammy Hagar
39. "Property Line," by The Marshall Tucker Band
40. "Wake Up Little Susie," by The Everly Brothers
41. "The Icicle Melts," by The Cranberries
42. "Everybody's a Victim," by The Proclaimers
43. "Wonderful," by Everclear
44. "Two Sisters," by The Kinks
45. "Taxman, Mr. Thief," by Cheap Trick
46. "Wind of Change," by The Scorpions
47. "One," by Creed*
48. "Why Don't You Get a Job," by The Offspring
49. "Abortion," by Kid Rock*
50. "Stand By Your Man," by Tammy Wynette (or Motorhead)

John Derbyshire's top choices, "Fiddle About" and "Aqualung," placed at 51 and 52.

Votes for "Idiot Son of An Asshole" were not counted out of consideration for Jonah Goldberg, John Podhoretz and Chris Buckley.

Update (5/26): The Rude Pundit digs deeper.

* I hear Miller has a complete collection of Scott Stapp and Kid Rock's videos too.

Grand Old Police Blotter: Oh, Kenny Boy Edition

(To be sung in a heavily slurred "they've stolen me Lucky Charms" accent, or by Frank McCourt)

Oh Kenny Boy, the jury foreman's calling
Bush Pioneer, on trial and out on bail
The verdict's in; it says that you were lying
'Tis you, 'tis you must go and rot in jail

Six counts of fraud, six guilty verdicts
Your credibility less than Tony Snow's
Be sure to make new friends in the slammer
Oh Kenny Boy, convict, ex-CEO

And Bush will swear he doesn't know you
Those hundred thousands will not set you free
Your face time with Cheney all forgotten
'Cause Dick needs his own immunity

Your victims remain uncompensated
Your sentence will a hollow victory be
But forty years locked up with Jeffrey Skilling
Sounds a lot like life in hell to me

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Dick Under Oath

The Associated Press is reporting that the prosecution intends to call Dicky Ticker Cheney as a witness in I. Lewis Libby perjury trial.

WASHINGTON - Vice President Dick Cheney could be called to testify in the perjury case against his former chief of staff, a special prosecutor said in a court filing Wednesday.

Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald suggested Cheney would be a logical government witness because he could authenticate notes he jotted on a July 6, 2003, New York Times opinion piece by a former U.S. ambassador critical of the Iraq war.

Fitzgerald said Cheney's "state of mind" is "directly relevant" to whether I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, the vice president's former top aide, lied to FBI agents and a federal grand jury about how he learned about CIA officer Valerie Plame's identity and what he subsequently told reporters.

I'd bet Dead Hand Dick can do a lot more than authenticate his own handwriting.

In a filing last week, Libby's lawyers said Fitzgerald would not call Cheney as a witness and would have a hard time getting the vice president's notes admitted into evidence.

I assume it would be fairly easy to get Dirty Dick's jottings into evidence without hauling his sour puss into court, but he'd be needed to supply other information, such as when the notes were made or (if disputed) what they meant. I'm guessing that the prosecution had planned to call Dick long before Libby's lawyers taunted the prosecution. I'd also guess the defense wants Dick to testify, mainly regarding matters of no relevance to the perjury charge. And I'm certain the witness stand is the last place that Dick wants to be.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

For all those you blessed without a subscription to Times Select, here's what you failed to learn from today's columns:

John Tierney: Al Gore was right about global warning, but there wasn't any reason to believe him when he said it. And Gore's movie is neither inconvenient nor true because it doesn't promote nuclear power, and because Gore's still an unlikeable poindexter.

Nicholas Kristof: One or more of the 3,800 entrants to the Win A Trip With Nick Kristof contest sent Nick nude photos. Not that Kristof is encouraging that; he's just sayin'. The winner is a 23 year-old Mississippi woman in j-school, who comes from a disadvantaged background. Her winning essay says of her childhood, "I never saw France or London." And, God willing, she'll never see Kristof's underpants either.

The 3,799 runners-up get nothing but Pistof's exhortation to "fly to Bangkok" on their own dime. Pistof thinks every American college should require its students to study abroad, and that leprechauns should foot the bill. Also, young Americans should travel in impoverished Asian and South American countries, which, while dangerous, have $5 "hotels" and "in rural areas, people may invite you to stay free in their huts." (I hear that in some rural areas of Colombia, the natives even greet you in their fields, smile and pass along a sample of their yield.)

Not Now, Howie

Howie Kurtz, Time Lord, seeks to cover his own shoddy reporting by manipulating the timeline:

"Wrong About Rove?

"By Howard Kurtz
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, May 23, 2006; 7:54 AM

"I reported yesterday (and if you missed it, start paying attention!) that the liberal Web site Truthout.org was standing by its claim that Karl Rove had been secretly indicted in the CIA leak case, despite strong denials by the White House aide's lawyer and spokesman.

"Why the Rove team would lie about information that, if true, was certain to come out soon was never quite clear. More than three dozen mainstream journalists checked on the Truthout report but could not confirm a word of it.

"Now Truthout has backed off, at least partially, from the story by reporter Jason Leopold, who has had some credibility problems in the past (as he acknowledges in a new book) but has also worked for such news outlets as the L.A. Times and Dow Jones.

"Marc Ash , the site's founder, writes: ...." (Emphasis added; link in original)
When Howie says "now," what he means to say is "four days ago" or, perhaps, "three days before my original story was published." No matter how you spin it, How, May 19 is not May 23.

And the last thing you should want is readers who pay attention to what you write.

Loon Letters In The Sand

On yesterday's Your World with Neil Cavuto, The Eldery Git in the White Buck Shoes revealed that the terrorists' WMD of choice isn't suitcase nukes, it's the new Dixie Chicks CD:

Boone, who is also a columnist for WorldNetDaily, says what seemed like a momentary misstep by Maines now begins to look like a flaw in her character.

"If I were the president of Iran, if I were Osama bin Laden or any of the terrorist organizers and I could have my wish list totally," Boone said, "I couldn't ask for anything better than for America's entertainers to bash their president, denigrate him, make him seem like an idiot and a self-serving fool, and then have the media go along with it and promote it like crazy and try to undermine the whole war effort."

He continued, "We are at war, and you don't tell even a quarterback in a football game that he's nuts and you don't respect him. You try to pull for a win, and that's what we should be trying to do. ... You can disagree. You can express your disagreement, but don't attack the man who is your elected leader and say he's not owed any respect at all."

Charlie Daniels couldn't have said it more incoherently.

Don't Believe The Hype

Tim Russert is peddling a new book, Widsom of Our Fathers. The p.r. spin is that Russert's previous book, Big Russ and Me, resulted in an immediate, spontaneous outpouring of letters and e-mail messages from people who were touched by Russert's blather:

The book sold over a half-million copies. Fans waited hours at signings. But it was the 60,000 people who sent letters and emails that opened Russert's eyes.

"People saw the book as an invitation to talk about their dad," he said. "They would say to me, 'You know, it was great learning about Big Russ. He's your guy. Let me tell you about Big Mike. Let me tell you about Big Irv. Let me tell you about Big Marty.' And they all had a story."

So Russert decided to publish the best stories in a second book: "Wisdom of Our Fathers -- Lessons and Letters from Daughters and Sons."

As Pumpkinhead himself tells it,

I didn't think I would write another book. But when I read the letters I received from readers, I realized I had no choice.

I received close to sixty thousand letters and e-emails, and I read them all.

Don't believe the hype. Here's what Tiny Tim said fourteen months ago:

Dear Reader,

Two years ago, I wrote a book about my father: Big Russ and Me: Father and Son, Lessons of Life. I have now decided to put together a new book in which a wide variety of sons and daughters will have a chance to write about their fathers. I would like to invite you to be part of this exciting new project, and to spread the word among your friends.

What am I looking for? Stories, lessons, advice or even a favorite saying that made your father special. Feel free to send me a vivid memory, a funny anecdote, or the story of your father's special accomplishment. Maybe he taught you an important lesson -- either with words or by example -- about work, love, kindness, friendship, integrity, faith, or anything else. You could also send me a letter of appreciation that you sent to your father, or a letter you wish you had written. It can even be a eulogy -- or anything else that seems appropriate. What I really care about is that you wrote it.

....I'm not looking for professional writing, but for stories and lessons that useful [sic], original, moving, inspiring, or just plain funny.

...

It would be easiest if you sent me an e-mail letter at MyDad@BigRussandMe.com in the form of a double-spaced Word document that comes as an attachment, but if you'd rather mail it the old-fashioned way, that's fine, too.

There will be no payment if your letter is used. Instead, I will be making a contribution to The Boys and Girls Club in the name of all the contributors. If I am able to use your letter, I will also be sending you an autographed copy of the book, which is scheduled for Father's Day, 2006....

Many thanks,

Tim Russert

So the outpouring was a wee bit less spontaneous than Tiny Tim would like you to think. At the time Tim already had his book planned (down to the publication date), he didn't have enough spontaneous correspondence to fill a slender volume.

Let's put another quote up on the screen:

I had expected that my book would appeal to readers in my home town of Buffalo, New York, but I didn't know whether the story of a young man coming of age in a blue-collar Irish-Catholic neighborhood, whose father was a truck driver and a sanitation man, would strike a cord [sic] with a wider audience. As soon as I discovered there were many Big Russes out there -- good, industrious, and patriotic men who has [sic] a lot in common with my dad, even if they didn't share his religion or his heritage. [sic] By writing a book about my father, I was affirming not only his life, but the lives of many other fathers as well.

I realized early on that the book was resonating far beyond what I had anticipated. Without intending to, I had given many readers an opportunity -- an invitation, really, to talk about their fathers. They had listened to my story, and now I was listening to theirs.

Didn't know? Unanticipated? Unintended invitation?!?

But didn't you tell Howie the Putz:

And that is essential to understanding why I ask what I ask and why I do what I do, and that this guy called Big Russ has been central to my life and that there are a lot of Big Russes in the country. And I think we're going to find out a whole lot more about that after this book comes out [this month].

Who knew America was full of people who think their fathers are good, industrious and patriotic men? Not Tim!

Faux ignorance is not your strong suit, Timmy.

Nor is writing.

I don't usually ask for research assistance from readers, but if someone could send me a copy of Pumpkinhead's book contracts in the form of a double-spaced Word document that comes as an attachment....

Monday, May 22, 2006

Excuse Them While They Piss Their Pants

From SodBusters:

Is Google Purging Conservative News Sites?

Posted by Noel Sheppard on May 22, 2006 - 09:37.

Something frighteningly ominous has been happening on the Internet lately: Google, without any prior explanation or notice, has been terminating its News relationship with conservative e-zines and web journals.

Not exactly Saw 2 as horror stories go. Next to this bit of tedious whinging is a depiction of the Google News logo with a menstrual red slash through it and the word "CENSORED" underneath in red letters.

The post goes on to assert that a bunch of rightwing sites whose ratio of half-witted bile to news is 10,000:1 have been determined by Google to be hate sites, and thus are no longer linked to by Google News. The Bad Sheppard ends with this soggy spot of chinless whimpering:

Moreover, to new media providers like e-zines and web journals, referrals from Google News can comprise 20 percent or more of their unique reads in a given day, which is the bread and butter for determining current and future ad revenue.

With that in mind, how much power does a company that disseminates almost half of the country's word search results command over the opinions of our growing population, and what protections exist against abuses of such overreaching power?

How does such a company put itself in the position of grand arbiter over what is and what is not "hate speech," or content otherwise objectionable?
Oh, that last one is a real stumper!

Now here's the punchline:

Noel Sheppard is an economist, business owner, and a featured writer at the prestigious American Thinker. He is also a contributing writer to the Free Market Project and a contributing editor for NewsBusters. He welcomes your feedback at nsheppard@costlogic.com.
Stop it, Noel, you're killing me.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Pumpkinhead For The Prosecution

This article suggests that Tim Russert will be a key prosecution witness in the Government's case against Scooter Libby.

"I was very clear to say reporters are telling us that because in my mind I still didn't know it as a fact. I thought I was -- all I had was this information was coming in from reporters," Libby told the grand jury, according to the indictment.

The indictment said Russert never disclosed anything about Plame in his conversation with Libby. Instead, prosecutors say, Libby learned about Plame's CIA employment in June 2003 from Cheney, Undersecretary of State Marc Grossman and at least one senior CIA official, according to court papers.

At last week's court argument on pretrial motions, Fitzgerald said Libby had a "motive to lie" to the grand jury. By "attributing to a reporter" his information about Plame's CIA status and emphasizing that he was "passing on" scuttlebutt but "didn't know if it were true," the prosecutor said, Libby in his testimony was deliberately casting his actions as "a non-crime" in a way that "looks much more innocent than passing on what you know to be classified."

It would be most amusing if the White House's go-to-guy for the Sunday shows rolled over on Libby.

Ass of Base

In the Washington Post, Dick Vig says that conservatives were responsible for electing every President in the last 50-plus years, and that every Republican president/presidential candidate who lost in that period lost because he wasn't wingnutty enough:

In 1948, conservatives were unhappy with Thomas E. Dewey's liberal Republican "me too" campaign, and enough of them stayed home to give the election to Harry S. Truman. In 1960, conservatives were unhappy with Richard M. Nixon's negotiations with Nelson A. Rockefeller to divide the spoils of victory before victory was even achieved, and John F. Kennedy won.

...

In 1974, conservatives were unhappy with the corruption and Big Government policies of Nixon's White House and with President Gerald R. Ford's selection of Rockefeller as his vice president, and this led to major Republican losses in the congressional races that year. By 1976, conservatives were fed up with Ford's adoption of Rockefeller's agenda, and Jimmy Carter was elected with the backing of Christian conservatives.

In 1992, conservatives were so unhappy with President George H.W. Bush's open disdain for them that they staged an open rebellion, first with the candidacy of Patrick J. Buchanan and then with Ross Perot. The result was an incumbent president receiving a paltry 37 percent of the vote. In 1998, conservatives were demoralized by congressional Republicans' wild spending and their backing away from conservative ideas. The result was an unexpected loss of seats in the House and the resignation of Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.).

You're losing your touch, Dick. You forgot how Barry Goldwater sold out true Republican priniciples, and don't have the balls to mention that true conservative hero, George Wallace.