Tuesday, June 12, 2007

5 Across: Pub Drinks

The mysteries of me, revealed.

Well, not really.

(Link via Dr. Alterman)

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Shorter Joe Klein

"It's" "okay" if "you're" "a" Republican.
James Wolcott, with a keen eye for wingnut fantasy tropes, has a brilliant post in which he drops The Anchoress like a dead weight and references one of the funniest SCTV sketches of all time.

The only things the Anchoress' Tale is missing are a cab driver who sounds remarkably like Walter Williams and an appearance from John Kerry, demanding "Don't you know who I am?"

How The Righty Have Fallen

Is it poor form to ridicule a 79 year-old man who falls and allegedly hits his head on a heat register? I say, not if the geezer in question is the hero of twits who have long ridiculed a 79 year-old woman suffered severe injuries when she was scalding-hot coffee.

As is well known by now, the ambulance chasers at Ted Olson's hack shop have filed suit in U.S. District Court on behalf of Bob Bork, the Nation's most famous failed jurist.

Seems Bork showed up at The Yale Club to collect some wingnut welfare from The New Criterion, tripped while trying to "mount the dias" and brushed his bonce against a radiator. Bork claims he also bruised his leg, a blood vessel burst and hi-larious complications and litigations ensued.

Interestingly, various sources report that Bork dusted himself off and gave his speech without difficulty. Yet the complaint alleges that Bork "suffered excruciating pain as the result of this injury and was largely immobile during the months in which he received physical therapy, preventing him from working his typical schedule before the injury." Since Bork is claiming a loss of income and ongoing injuries, discovery concerning his pre-injury revenue will be warranted, as well as surveillance of the purportedly crippled geezer. Hopefully that information will find its way into the public venue.

The alleged defect in The Yale Club premises in fact no defect at all. Bork claims there was no handrail to assist him in mounting the dias. Yet surely that was obvious to even someone of Bork's limited intellect, and none of the other men (we can safely assume) who mounted the dias have filed suit against the Club. If the dias was dangerous, Bork shouldn't have attempted to mount it.

As Benjamin Cardozo once said, "The bearded git may stay at home."

Bonus Comedy: AEI tool Ted Frank and unlucky sperm club member Robert H. Bork, Jnr. (who seems to believe proof of causation will not be required) duke it out over Bork Daddy.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Left Behind

Fouad Ajami appeals to George Bush's inner Rambo with the heartfelt plea, "Mr. President, do not leave this man behind."

In "The Soldier's Creed," there is a particularly compelling principle: "I will never leave a fallen comrade." This is a cherished belief, and it has been so since soldiers and chroniclers and philosophers thought about wars and great, common endeavors. Across time and space, cultures, each in its own way, have given voice to this most basic of beliefs. They have done it, we know, to give heart to those who embark on a common mission, to give them confidence that they will not be given up under duress. A process that yields up Scooter Libby to a zealous prosecutor is justice gone awry.

Your first mistake, Fouad, is an appeal to martial bravery and honor. They don't call Bush A.W.O.L. for nothing. The man couldn't be bothered to complete his military service, much less get within 6,000 miles of his fallen comrades. And Bush didn't give a shit when Dick Cheney and his crew gave up a covert agent without duress, and act done, in his old man's words, by "the most insidious of traitors."

If Libby gets sprung, the only reason will be to protect Bush from what Libby might say in prison. Bush has no loyalty or honor or even comrades. You might as well appeal to his ability to fart the 1812 Overture.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Penalty Kick

Philip Weiss offers this strange aside on the Scooter Libby sentence:

Pat Buchanan believes the huge sentence to be "punitive." I agree.

Well, hell. The whole fucking penal code is full of punishments. The word penal may be your first hint. Were you hoping he'd get a side-by-side refrigerator and a year's supply of Rice-a-Roni?

But Weiss makes up for it with this post.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Orgies to Avoid

Murdoch, Ailes, Weymouth Pump Bloomberg At Breindel Awards

I hear they don't even provide clean needles at those awards, in tribute to the original High-Pitch Eric.

Too Little, Too Late

Marty "Wedding Singer" Peretz couldn't be bothered to write a sentencing letter on behalf of his old friend Scooter Libby, but he did get around to blogging about it after the fact. Sez Peretz:

Scooter Libby has been sentenced to 30 months in prison. It was not he who leaked Valerie Plame's name and identity; the offenders were Richard Armitage and Karl Rove. If, indeed, it was much of an offense in the first instance. If you think this is a crime then call for the prosecution of Armitage and Rove.

Libby's case will now go to an appellate court where perhaps the sitting judges will finally examine whether US attorney Patrick Fitzgerald brought malice to the grand jury that he convened to look into the earthshaking matter of who outed Valerie. She and her husband, Joe Wilson, former ambassador to Gabon (pop. 1.7 million) and Sao Tome/Principe (pop. less than one tenth of Gabon), the second being two islands off western Equatorial Africa, are one of those oh, so flashy couples that it's hard to believe that they lived an undercover life. Somehow she got him, a public person, upgraded to do a piece of secret intelligence about Iraq's efforts to purchase yellowcake from Niger. It didn't. [wtf?!? -- R.A.] Still, what involved Libby is so insignificant that what would have been appropriate perhaps would be to keep him after school for a few hours or forbid him from going to gym class. End of story.

Don't worry, Marty. Wherever Libby goes, it will have a very nice gym facility. Scooter's touch football skills will not go to waste either, if there's any truth to The Longest Yard.

(link via Instaputz)

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Big Pharma, Fucking Moron

Rush Limbaugh, Katherine Lopez's doppel-widegänger, is rubbing out some keen insights tonight over at The Idiot's Corner. Big Pharma spots a sinister plot at the Republican debate:

These questions are driven by the fears and biases of the liberal agenda. Note also how the screen graphics immediately match Wolf's line of questioning, which means this whole thing was pre-produced by the producers at CNN. This is not a debate so much as a modified inquisition.

Amazing. A television debate that's been pre-produced. By producers. That never happens. And asking prepared questions -- it's positively inquisition-y!

Of course, if Big Pharma had watched the Democratic candidate's debate on Sunday, instead of spending the weekend trolling the Third World with a bottleful of Daddy's Little Helper, he would know that not only did Wolf have his own questions in his hot little hands, he also had those of the local reporters, which he read the reporters' microphones failed. In other words, Wolfie wasn't just making up all the questions as he went along -- at either debate.

Rush is subnormal even at The Corner. Even when Mark Levin is there.

Hey, Rudy, forget Scooter Libby. Do you plan to pardon Bernie Kerik?

Ted Wells Was Right

As a blogger, I am duty bound to mock those who wrote sentencing letters in support of Inmate No. 4026969, formerly known as "Scooter" Libby. The Smoking Gun has made some of those missives available, to make my job of mocking easier.

Let's start with this submission from Leon "Cokie" Wieseltier:

Dear Judge Walton:

I am the literary editor of The New Republic, a position that I have proudly held since 1983.

Hey! Wieseltier used a split infinitive I'm a dumb ass.

Wieseltier goes on to explain that his family needed some legal assistance a "very long time" ago, so he called his old friend, Len Garment, who ordered his associate, Scooter, to provide the Wieseltiers with some "charitable assistance." The court has redacted the portion of the correspondence in which Wieseltier describes the nature of his family's legal troubles, and one might question whether cadging free legal representation from a high-powered, well-connected Nixon stooge represents either the receipt of charity or circumstances warranting the mercy of the court. After all, it was Libby's job to provide competent legal services to the Wieseltiers, whether he was getting paid or not. But Leon, who is willing to put his "own hand on the Bible" on Libby's behalf, appears confident that Judge Walton will find Libby's compulsory twenty year old pro bono work sufficient mitigation for perjury in the present century.

If anyone knows the legal jeopardy Wieseltier describes in his letter, be sure to let me know, either in comments or by e-mail.

Update: Won't someone please think of the children? You have no idea what the Libby trial "has done to [Mary Matalin's] own kids, just their reading about it." The little tykes just can't understand why "Mr. Scooter" did the things for which he was convicted. Not to mention the many other children who love Scooter.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Raise your hand if you think the United States should boycott the 2008 Summer Olympics.

J.F.C.

With God Up Our Backside

Peter Hitchens, the Hitchens who doesn't pluck his eyebrows, on his brother Chris:

If you do not worship God, you end up worshipping power, whether it is Kim Jong Il, Leon Trotsky or the military might of George W. Bush. In which case, God help you.

While the image of Chris as Bush bootlicker is appropriate, this claim is otherwise bullshit. Plenty of people who worship Peter's God also worship the abuse of power, starting with Bush himself. I would venture there's a significant overlap of American Christians and those who worship the occupation of Iraq, and that such a group is much larger than the subset of Christians who oppose the war because of their religious faith.

Li'l Snitchens also insults those non-believers who oppose the occupation without resorting to religion, or at least he would if we gave a toss about what he thought.

p.s. to Li'l Snitch: Atheists didn't invent the torture chamber (don't you know your own country's history?), and they're not as enamored of torture as are the godly today.

Update: Barbara O'Brien said pretty much the same thing, earlier, and proves my point.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

A good man has passed away.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Young and Stupid

The Young Assholes Foundation has once again attempted to expose liberalism on American campuses, and is once again left with its own nuts flapping the breeze:

Commencement addresses at the nation's top colleges and universities this year mostly were given by left-leaning or Democratic speakers with few conservatives snagging the honor, according to a report released yesterday by the Young America's Foundation.

...

The list included "liberal media personalities," such as New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and CNN's Wolf Blitzer at George Washington University. With some schools yet to announce their speakers at the time of the review and some schools' speakers listed as neutral, YAF found 42 "blue" speakers and eight "red" speakers.

Alexandra Acker, executive director of the Young Democrats of America, called the list laughable, especially for how it categorized who is liberal. She said "NBC Nightly News" host Brian Williams was counted as left-leaning, as was Microsoft founder Bill Gates, even though most Americans wouldn't categorize them that way.

"They're really going to extremes," she said of YAF.

The YAF list described Mr. Gates, who spoke at Harvard University, as giving money "to many left-wing causes, including gun-control ballot and tax-hike initiatives."

It described Jared Diamond, a professor at the University of California at Los Angeles who spoke at California Institute of Technology, as someone who "strongly believes in the leftist positions of overpopulation and man-induced global warming," and it criticized Duke University's president and speaker, Richard Brodhead, because he "allowed leftist professors and racists, including Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, to accuse members of the Duke lacrosse team of rape."

...

[Ward] Connerly said conservatives such as himself, Ann Coulter and David Horowitz rarely make it past the "gatekeeper" at top universities and colleges.

If you're going to criticize universities, shouldn't you at least take the time to compose grammatical sentences?

And shouldn't you know something -- anything -- about Wolf Blitzer, Brian Williams and Tom "The Unit" Friedman before you express opinions about them?

The obvious solution: If you don't like what happens on campus, go homeschool yourself.

Now here's an internet campaign that could get bipartisan support.

Although you'd have to be insane to give them -- whoever they are -- your email address, let alone your credit card.

Bozell. T... W... A....

While Media Matters and left bloggers shine a spotlight on media malfeasance in coverage the Iraq War, the Bush Administration and the crimes of Scooter Libby, the wingnut site NewsBusters is whining as hard as it can about liberal bias in reporting poindexter competitions*:

B-I-A-S: Media Largely Ignore Spelling Bee Champ's Homeschooled Status

When California homeschooler Evan O'Dorney, 13, won the National Spelling Bee on Thursday night, the nation's press reacted with a yawn.

Instead of focusing on the winner, The New York Times ran a story about an immigrant from India who lost in the second round of the competition. That boy, Kunal Sah, 12, who is living in Utah, had hoped a victory would secure his family’s legal status in the United States. Thus, the Times managed to use the National Spelling Bee as one more forum for pushing the plight of immigrants.

Not until the middle of the story did The Times get around to announcing the winner, noting only his name and hometown and the fact that the AP reported his victory.

Meanwhile, USA Today and The Washington Post chalked up Evan's triumph to his penchant for eating fish right before each round. The Post's Elissa Silverman, in "The Sweet Spell of Success," ignored completely the fact that Evan is homeschooled, and noted that Evan liked to eat tuna sandwiches from Subway. That’s right. The subheadline reads: "Fueled by Tuna Sandwiches, California Teen Tops 300 students."

On CBS, "Early Show" host Russ Mitchell interviewed Evan and his parents, but home schooling never came up. Same with Al Roker's and Meredith Vieira's interview with the family on NBC’s "Today" show.

ABC's "Good Morning America" host Robin Roberts, on the other hand, was right up front about Evan's education during an interview this morning with him and his parents, introducing Evan's mother as his "homeschool teacher and coach."

More fish, anyone?

For a fuller item on this, check the MRC's Culture and Media Institute Web site.

Update (Ken Shepherd 14:50 EDT): Seven years ago the National Spelling Bee winner was also homeschooled, but as NB editor Brent Baker noted, of the three major networks, only CBS ignored that fact in their coverage.

The lesson to be drawn is obvious: Both our public and parochial schools have failed in teaching rote memorization of useless knowledge, leaving it up parents to fill that void. Only a liberal press would suppress that truth.

Of course, much of the coverage also failed to mention that young Evan plans to take a calculus class at U.C. Berkeley and not, say, Regent University or Bob Jones U. I'm sure the clowns at NewsBusters could find bias in that fact if it fit their little fantasy.

* I was once a spelling poindexter, but never got further farther than my own school.

Shorter Jonah Goldberg

"If I steal half of my column from a website, the column almost writes itself."

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Sam Brownback, Flip-Flopper

Shorter Sammy Browncrack: "I am for inquiry and facts ... up to a point."

But limiting this question to a stark choice between evolution and creationism does a disservice to the complexity of the interaction between science, faith and reason.

...

Ultimately, on the question of the origins of the universe, I am happy to let the facts speak for themselves.

...

Biologists will have their debates about man's origins, but people of faith can also bring a great deal to the table. For this reason, I oppose the exclusion of either faith or reason from the discussion.

...

While no stone should be left unturned in seeking to discover the nature of man's origins, we can say with conviction that we know with certainty at least part of the outcome. Man was not an accident and reflects an image and likeness unique in the created order. Those aspects of evolutionary theory compatible with this truth are a welcome addition to human knowledge. Aspects of these theories that undermine this truth, however, should be firmly rejected as an atheistic theology posing as science.

Found Comedy

Joe Klein opines:

"David Yepson [sic] on Joe Biden, a profile in courage."

"Broder is right about this, for sure: John Warner will be the key to what happens next."

"A Note of Etiquette: ....

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Great. Another Inbred Internet Enthusiast From Tennesee

Yokelfied cracker Fred Thompson throws his corncob pipe into the ring with a vow to become the first Internet candidate ever:

In an interview with USA TODAY, however, the former Tennessee senator not only makes it clear that he plans to run, he describes how he aims to do it. He's planning an unconventional campaign using blogs, video posts and other Internet innovations to reach voters repelled by politics-as-usual in both parties.

Yee-haw!

Do we call Fred's supporters Tommiacs or Tommy Babies? Or The Internet Hillbillies?

Cock Tails and Bull Tales

Will disgraced dissemblers Cliff May and Victoria Toerag finally be called to account for their lies about Valerie Plame? Will the Washington Post and CNN and Howie the Putz Kurtz refuse to give the spotlight to shameless liars? Note: For any newcomers to the site, these are rhetorical questions.

Glenn Greenwald has a list of those who lied about Plame in the service of the Administration and I. Scooter Libby. And David Corn has more, including my favorite, from the Pantload:

On September 30, 2003, National Review writer Jonah Goldberg huffed, "Wilson's wife is a desk jockey and much of the Washington cocktail circuit knew that already."

That's not the only thing Goldberg is huffing, David.

Terrorist Dry Hump

I tried last night and again this morning to open the Moonie Times' .pdf of the Department of Homeland Security report on its investigation into the Treehouse of Terror that was Northwest Flight 327. It didn't work either time, but I'll try again later. So we'll just have to look at the Moonie Times article touting the report for now.

Interestingly, the paper's URL for the .pdf is "www.washingtontimes/elections/DHS-IG-Northwest-327...." Not too subtle there.

As I suspected, the air marshals quoted by the Moonie Times as claiming a "terrorist dry run" had no personal involvement in the flight or the investigation, and (apparently) are not quoted in the report. They were called upon to opine by the Moonie rag itself.

The first marshal quoted is P. Jeffrey Black, a current federal air marshal. Interestingly, Pee is reportedly a member of the National Security Whistleblowers Coalition, whose other members include Siebel Edmonds, Daniel Ellsberg, Larry Johnson, Ray McGovern, the guy who wrote "Bush League Diplomacy: How the Neoconservatives are Putting the World at Risk" and a guy who blew the whistle on a covert operation "by Edwin Meece the then US Attorney General." Pee also co-authored an op-ed piece on whistleblowers with Colleen Rowley and others which can be seen on Dennis Kucinich's website.

According to the NSWC website, Pee claims that he "is currently receiving severe and continual retaliation from his agency in response to his whistleblowing disclosures ––retaliation that has caused detrimental changes in his official duties, responsibilities, and working conditions." Think that information might be relevant to the determination of Pee's credibility and potential bias? The Moonie Times sure doesn't. Instead, the paper identifies Pee as someone "who told The Times that he has been involved personally in terror probes that were ignored by federal security managers."

Doesn't Pee's claim that the probes were ignored by federal security managers seem inconsistent with the claim that Pee's been subject to retaliation by his superiors? Never mind.

The second marshal, Robert McLean, is, as the Moonie Times suggests, an individual fired by the TSA who claims whistleblower status and is suing (or sued) to get his job back. He even has his own glowing but scrupuously objective entry on Wikipedia. The Times says the third marshal, Jeffrey Denning, quit the TSA last month. I can't find anything on him through Google; therefore he probably doesn't exist.

The article does note that the actual report states the marshals assigned to the flight observed that "the men were sweaty, appeared nervous and arrived after the boarding announcement." People appearing sweaty and nervous after running to catch a airplane. If that's not terrorist behavior, I don't know what is. All such passengers should be detained, cavity-searched and, of course, shot if they try anything else funny.

Some nitwits (namely, Patterico) are astoundingly impressed by the fact that the Moonie rag found "both current and former air marshals (that's marshals, plural)" to rubberstamp the paper's two-year old conclusions. Let's hope that, in real life, Patterico shows a little more skepticism before he puts witnesses on the stand.

By the way, Fox News is all over the story as well. The mentally-challenged weatherman on Fox and Friends was interviewing Nutbag Annie Jacobson this morning. It was like watching a thumb-wrestling match that was fixed.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Comedy Gold

This is the best parody blog I've read in ages:

Fitz-Magoo is at it again, bending the law's of this country to settle vendatta's and scores with people for personal and political reasons. Between the hiding of evidence, filing false papers to the Appeal Courts and US Supreme Court, and now to making up laws as he sees fits, Fitzgerald is becoming more than a political hitman - he is becoming the law unto himself.

...

Fitzgerald has quite a few screws lose if he thinks he can sentence someone for a crime he KNOWS they did not commit on the theory he and he alone is omnipotent and knows deep down what Libby was up to (i.e., can read his heart and mind). It is long past time to investigate Fitzgerald and apply the same lose standards of evidence to his motives and coordination with Comey, et al.

The General, Captain Ed and the late Bob Boudelang have some stiff competition.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Shorter New York Times

Suckers!

(Yes, the piece rejects the premise expressed in the first sentence and, no, it's not the paper's editorial. But the suggestion that the press is anti-war and that it was "politicians" alone who misled the public into supporting the war is particularly galling coming from the NYT. The article is just another glaring example of the paper's refusal to take responsibility for the blood on its hands.)

Oh good. Nutbag Annie Jacobson's Flight 327 is back, and the wingnuts are wetting themselves over the non-story.

Comedy will follow.

Added: Okay, let me elaborate. Here's how the Moonie Times bamboozles the rubes, like those Powerline Clowns. The Times writes:

More details on Flight 327 released

The inspector general for Homeland Security late Friday released new details of what federal air marshals say was a terrorist dry run aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 327 from Detroit to Los Angeles on June 29, 2004.

Two paragraphs later, the article purports to set forth "Excerpts fom [sic] 51-page inspector general report."

Here's the bait-and-switch. The article's headline and first paragraph insinuate that the OIG report includes a finding that there was a terrorist dry run on Flight 327 or, at a minimum, that air marshals on the flight or involved in the investigation asserted that there was a dry run on Flight 327. But the article never says that. The Moonie rag says that the OIG report includes "new details," not that the report states there was a terrorist dry run on Flight 327.

In the later paragraphs purporting to summarize the article, there is no suggestion that the report concluded there was a terrorist dry run or that anyone involved in the investigation came to that conclusion.

I strongly suspect that the air marshals cited in paragraph one are wingnut kibbitzers who have reached their conclusion based on the reports of others (such as Jacobson), and not the investigating authorities actually involved in the case. If the inspector general or marshals actually involved in the investigation came to the conclusion that Flight 327 was a terrorist dry run, the Moonie Times would trumpet that claim in the clearest possible terms. And the air marshals on the flight are already on record debunking the delusions of Jacobson. (More here.)

Perhaps the DHS caved to wingnut pressures and issued a report quoting the conclusions of right-wing know-nothings. There's no reason to believe that all the insane true believers ended up in the Department of Justice. But it seems obvious that if the OIG's report concluded there were terrorist plotters plotting aboard Flight 327, the Moonie rag wouldn't be pussyfooting around with evasive and misleading language.

This isn't a new trick for the Moonie Times, either. Back in 2005, the same reporter was asserting that Flight 327 was "described by many federal air marshals and passengers as a dry run for a terrorist attack" without any corroboration that any air marshal held that view.

I would be remiss if I didn't link to this Janet Maslin's review of Newt Gingrich's latest historical potboiler:

On the basis of that detail, you might expect a high level of fastidiousness from "Pearl Harbor."

And you would be spectacularly wrong. Because you would find phrases like "to withdraw backward was impossible," sounds like "wretching noises" to accompany vomiting, or constructions like "incredulous as it seemed, America had not reacted." Although the book has two authors, it could have used a third assigned to cleanup patrol.

This is not a matter of isolated typographical errors. It is a serious case for the comma police, since the book's war on punctuation is almost as heated as the air assaults it describes. "One would have to be dead, very stupid Fuchida thought," the book says about the fighter pilot Mitsuo Fuchida, "not to realize they were sallying forth to war." Evidence notwithstanding, the authors do not mean to insult the fighter pilot's intelligence — or, presumably, the reader's.

...

Elsewhere in Hawaii, among the fighting forces, things are typically editor-proof. In a case for James's decoding skills, the book says: "The boys had money in their pockets to burn and fresh in from the West Coast the obligatory photos with hula girls, sentimental silk pillows for moms and girlfriends, and ridiculous-printed shirts had sold like crazy."

Everytime I go into a bookstore, I am amazed by the sheer volume of crap piled within 50 feet of entrance. I'm not saying that I'm capable of writing a readable book, but is it too much to ask that those who write books do so?

Saturday, May 26, 2007

I Am My Sociopath's Son

Blogger "Doctor" Laura Schlessinger answers the question of whether insanity is hereditary or the product of bad parenting. It's both.

Radio talk-show host Laura Schlessinger is appealing to news media outlets to respect her son's privacy amid an Army investigation into whether he is behind a lurid personal Web page that featured cartoon depictions of rape, murder, torture and child molestation.

The posting on MySpace.com drew the Army's attention after the Salt Lake City Tribune reported this month that the Web page was credited to and included photos of Deryk, the 21-year-old son of the outspoken radio personality known to millions as "Dr. Laura." She can be heard locally on KFI-AM (640).

According to the Tribune, the Web page, which has since been taken down, included a photograph of a bound and blindfolded detainee, accounts of illicit drug use and a blog entry headlined by a series of obscenities and racial epithets.

Laura Schlessinger's publicist issued a statement Thursday stating that the Army "is investigating who is the actual author of the MySpace website." Army spokesmen in Afghanistan, where Deryk reportedly is stationed, could not immediately be reached for comment.
If the good "Doctor" is claiming that the author of the website is unknown, why is she appealing for her punk's son privacy? And why is she not condemning the author of the site in advance of the resolution of the Army's investigation? Surely a loving parent would defend her son against false accusations of depravity.

To be fair, it could all be some Islamojihadofascist trick:

Mike Paul, spokesman for Laura Schlessinger, released a statement which said, in part, "We hope all news media outlets will respect his privacy for his safety and the safety of those serving with him." In an interview with The Tribune, Paul suggested that the page could be a fake.

That was a contention echoed by Army spokesman Robert Tallman, who said "it may be possible that our enemies are actually behind this.

"Our enemies are adaptive, technologically sophisticated, and truly understand the importance of the information battlespace," Tallman continued. "Sadly, they will use that space to promulgate and disseminate untrue propaganda."

Yeah, that must be it. I bet our enemies are behind the Mitt Romney page too.

God Is Not Mocked

Jane Hamsher has the extraordinary plea from Irv Libby's mouthpieces for the court to withhold from public disclosure the sentencing letters concerning his criminal client. Sayeth the shysters:

Given the extraordinary media scrutiny here, if any case presents the real possibility that these letters, once released, would be printed on the internet and their authors discussed, if not mocked, by bloggers, it is this case.

Talk about fairweather friends. These heroes support Libby only to the extent their support won't make them the target of ridicule by dorks with computers.

Here's a thought for Libby's cowardly liars: Mocking doesn't mean anything. People can mock me all they want, however they want. It only stings when it's true.

On the legal issue, it's astounding that a court sentencing a convicted criminal would -- or could -- give any weight to matters contained in documents not disclosed to the public. In (presumably) unsworn letters, which could contain all manner of falsehoods, purchased accolades, etc. not subject to cross-examination. In the normal criminal trial, where the defendant doesn't have a lot of friends and co-conspirators in high places, consideration of such extraenous material would work against the defendant in many cases, since the unsworn opinion would come from the alleged victim and/or the alleged victim's friends, neighbors and victim's rights advocates.

In this case, however, Libby thinks that anyone, including persons with undisclosed knowledge of Libby's crimes and those who would indirectly benefit from a light sentence (persons Scooter might rat out in the third year of his sentence, when they're no longer in power, for example), should be allowed to vouch for him without any procedure, in court or out of court, to test the worth of their claims. If there's anything to that's contrary to the traditions of Anglo-American law (post-trial-by-dunking and pre-Patriot Act), it's that. And if Libby doesn't want the letters made public, Judge Walton should recycle them as courthouse bog roll without even opening them.

Friday, May 25, 2007

They've Already Started Greasing Up Each Other's Thighs

Is anyone conceivably surprised by the subject of this Sunday's Chris Matthews Show?

By the way, that's one subject. It's responsible for everything that happened, even things taking place before it existed.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

In Over His Head

Before she and Sampson resigned, Goodling wrote a series of memos summing up the longtime U.S. attorneys she helped to fire. She said that Iglesias was "in over his head," that Carol C. Lam of San Diego showed "a failure to perform" and that Arizona's Paul K. Charlton was guilty of "repeated instances of insubordination."

Today's hearing should be informative as well as entertaining. Christy Hardin Smith will be liveblogging the proceedings at firedoglake.

And you can watch it here beginning at 10:15 a.m. Eastern.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Crime Me A River

"All I ever wanted to do was serve this president and this administration and this department." "Waaah, waaah, waaah."

Make no mistake, the wingnut talking points are already in place. Monica Goodling will be compelled to testify tomorrow and, once she starts weeping on cue, the 'nuts will weave a tale of woe in which Monica is persecuted for her Christian faith by the sexist Dem bullies on the House Judiciary Committees. Look for the bolder bloggers to paint a dark picture of Rep. John Conyers threatening Monica's spotless virtue.

Of course, that's if Monica toes the White House line despite her grant of immunity. If she crosses Bush and his bagman, it'll be further proof that the G.O.P. can't trust women in positions of authority.

Grand Old Police Blotter: D. Uhl Normal Edition

Strife between fundamentalist religious sects* has now led to terrorism on this Nation's shores:

A small group of protesters gathered near the funeral services to criticize the man who mobilized Christian evangelicals and made them a major force in American politics -- often by playing on social prejudices.

A group of students from Falwell's Liberty University staged a counterprotest.

And Campbell County authorities arrested a Liberty University student for having several homemade bombs in his car.

The student, 19-year-old Mark D. Uhl of Amissville, Va., reportedly told authorities that he was making the bombs to stop protesters from disrupting the funeral service. The devices were made of a combination of gasoline and detergent, a law enforcement official told ABC News' Pierre Thomas. They were "slow burn," according to the official, and would not have been very destructive.

"There were indications that there were others involved in the manufacturing of these devices and we are still investigating these individuals with the assistance of ATF [Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms], Virginia State Police and FBI. At this time it is not believed that these devices were going to be used to interrupt the funeral services at Liberty University," the Campbell County Sheriff's Office said in a release.

Mr. Uhl's fellow homcide bombers and Sons of Liberty include a soldier and a high school student.

It is now clear that these dangerous radicals known as Baptists cannot be trusted. They must be profiled, they must be excluded from participating in our government and yes, they must be waterboarded.

I AM John Doe!

* I am assuming the protesters were the Phelps KClan. The ABC article doesn't say.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Losers On The Web

Contrary to the G.O.P. snake oil salesmen trying to peddle themselves as geniuses of internet strategy and potential saviors of the party, the reason the Republican Party is losing on the web has nothing to do with its lack of online strategy, or strategists.

It's this.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Starfucks

Where the shit comes on both sides of the cup:

The Way I See It #224 "Darwinism's impact on traditional social values has not been as benign as its advocates would like us to believe. Despite the efforts of its modern defenders to distance themselves from its baleful social consequences, Darwinism's connection with eugenics, abortion and racism is a matter of historical record. And the record is not pretty."--Dr. Jonathan Wells, biologist and author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Darwinism and Intelligent Design

They must figure if you're paying $3.50 for coffee and syrup, there's no way they can insult your intelligence.

That Darn Internet!

(First in a continuing series)

Those nasty special interest groups are expressing their opinions, but radio talk show hosts aren't going to stand for that nonsense.

From today's Reliable Putzes:

[Michael]HARRISON [Talkers magazine]: ... But what's really happening is special interest groups are trying to intimidate advertisers to take their money out of talk radio in general, whether it's satellite, Internet, or terrestrial, and that's the underlying cause of all of this. They are trying to create a moral equivalency between rape porn and political satire. And that's a dangerous, slippery slope. And that's the real story.

KURTZ: I agree that there should be a line there.

And go ahead, Michael Medved.

MEDVED: Well, I think that's exactly right. And the problem with all of this is that, again, listening to Howard Stern, he does a bit called "Miss Black Howard Stern". There is nakedly racist material on the Howard Stern show, and actually he's proud of it....

The difficulty with all of this is that we're all subject to an activist taking -- and this is what happened to Imus. They took not the most offensive part of the Imus show in its history, but just one of many, many components that clearly went over some lines of tastefulness.

KURTZ: Michael Medved, has any of your -- have any of your listeners ever complained about you to the FCC?

MEDVED: Yes. There's one listener who has complained about 70 times because I was critical of very public people who had children out of wedlock, and we did a segment called "Celebrity Bastard Baby".

And this was -- now, thank god the FCC hasn't taken action against me. But when you live in a climate when somebody -- one person can be offended and then make a cause out of it, and you don't know where it's coming at you or what's expected, this is very, very difficult. And it's paralyzing for the industry, and it's paralyzing even potentially for political free speech when there are politicians who are talking about imposing fairness doctrines and cutting off political discussion. That's very chilling.

...

KURTZ: Michael Harrison, you used the phrase "intimidation," that people are trying to intimidate advertisers. Now, Imus, by the way, through his lawyers, is trying to get back on the air either at CBS or elsewhere. But what you would call intimidation others might say is just people expressing their distaste or their revulsion...

(CROSSTALK)

HARRISON: Right, they are. But they are taking something that's in a narrow cast situation and, as Brooke pointed out, amplifying it over and over and over on the Internet, bringing it to a wider audience who are outraged by something that they didn't watch, nor was geared to them originally, which is going to take away diversity.

Everything is now going to -- we're going to go back to the "I love Lucy" days, where they have to have separate beds in the bedroom because the whole country is watching it, when, in fact, these are specialized channels, specialized stations. We're in a modern 2007, 21st century era, and this Internet amplification is turning everything into mass appeal by special interests that are purposefully doing that. And we have to keep our eye on that.

Utopia for Harrison and Medved is a world where they make a nice living from expressing their opinions and no one else gets to express theirs, particularly if that expression amounts to criticism of them. And in their reality, more speech is a threat to diversity.

Their real concern is that the great unwashed, with their crappy little home computers, will take away their perches of privilege. Or at least manage to talk back without interference from their call screeners.

Medved's whining about reinstatement of the Fairness Doctrine is particularly absurd, since it's government regulation in the first instance which doesn't simply place economic barriers to entry but absolute legal prohibitions to entry. As a result of federal licensing, Medved and his ilk are being subsidized by the citizenry and being protected from competition by licensing requirements. Syndicated hosts like Mikey Medved may have to compete with other wingnuts to sell their programs those who currently own the airwaves, but they shouldn't pretend terrestrial radio is anything like a free market or ideas, or of anything else.

And if Harrison and Medved don't like being revealed for the flatulent frauds they are, they can always bitch to my advertisers.

Friday, May 18, 2007

God And 9/11 Made Me ... Filthy!

A stirring tale of sacrifice on the War on Terror:

One particular day provided some clarity. September 11, 2001. I don't think the English language has yet found the words to describe the pain and anguish we felt that day. And yet we learned much about each other. The bravery of the first responders who went up the stairs of burning buildings. The heroic selfless souls on United flight #93. The patience of tens of thousands of drivers who left the devastated areas in an orderly way.

I have not honked my car horn since September 11 as a gesture of respect to all of them. 9/11 also gave me a whole new insight into my Dad and why he left school in the 10th grade to enlist after Pearl Harbor. I wrote a book affirming his life. It changed my life and my relationship with my father -- and my son -- forever. We now share openly the love and respect and pride we have in each other. A day doesn't go by when other sons and daughters want to share stories of their dad with me. Now that's a journey I never expected, but one which is so meaningful -- perhaps even more important than my "career."

Bottom line. I'm working hard, laughing often and praying with purpose. On with life!

Tim Russert is the Managing Editor and Moderator of Meet the Press and political analyst for NBC Nightly News and the Today Program. He anchors The Tim Russert Show, a weekly interview program on CNBC and is a contributing anchor for MSNBC. His two books, "Big Russ and Me" in 2004 and "Wisdom of Our Fathers" in 2006, were both New York Times #1. bestsellers.

One can only imagine the torturous temptation Tim faces each time he passes a motorist with a Honk If You're Horny bumpersticker. Only a loving and faithful God, and that plexiglass panel between Tim and his driver, could sustain Tim in his darkest hour.

And that prayer with purpose? Oh Lord, the multi-million dollar advance is almost gone. I could really use a new book proposal right about now.

Shorter Tom McGuire: Those remedial reading lessons were wasted on me.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Old Farts

If you've ever prayed for the opportunity to hear Bob Shrum opine on a weekly current events program, your prayers have been answered. From an e-mail received today:

The two new weekday shows [on Air America] include (sic)"Lionel" and "The Air Americans" hosted by veteran Mark Riley, with correspondents Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., Mike Papantonio, David Bender and Laura Flanders, airing at 8p-12a weeknights. The new weekend shows include "Seder on Sunday" from 4-7p Sunday and "7 Days in America" 6-7p Saturdays, a week-in-review show with Arianna Huffington, Mark Green, Bob Kerrey and Bob Shrum.

Fortunately, the affilliate in my area fills most of the weekends with infomercials about real estate investors and colon cleansers.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

I Hope They Cast A Fat Kid With Asthma And Glasses

CBS plans to broadcast a series this fall based on last night's Republican debate:

"For those of you who accuse CBS of being too conservative, you will feel differently when you see the shows we have lined up," said Leslie Moonves, chairman of CBS Corp.

A new reality show, "Kid Nation," will take 40 children and set them up in an abandoned New Mexico town. Cameras will follow them as they try to set up their own society without adult supervision.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Falwells That End Well

The network news rolodexs are flying at half-mast today.

Time for an update of The Clinton Chronicles, to account for their latest victim.

Update: In related news, John McCain is already interviewing new religious zealots he can pander to.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

The Dark Side of Nativism

In response to Pat Buchanan's claim that "in numbers higher than our native born, some [immigrants] are going berserk here," Eve Fairbanks points out the mini-crime spree committted by inbred drunken Papists named Buchanan.

Inexplicably, however, she forgets the most notorious homicidal loon of the Clan Buchanan:

Chris Matthews' [false] report that Kathleen Willey was threatened in January 1998 by Cody Shearer, a Washington journalist and investigator with close ties to the Clinton administration, nearly had tragic repercussions here on Sunday night.

After hearing the allegation -- first broadcast May 11 on CNBC's "Hardball" -- presidential candidate Pat Buchanan's older brother Hank, a 61-year-old former accountant with a history of mental illness, drove from his Maryland home to Washington to find Shearer.

And he had a gun.

Apparently, Buchanan easily found Shearer's home in a leafy Washington neighborhood....

Buchanan broke into Shearer's garage and slashed the tires of three cars, one of Shearer's housemates told Salon News. When two of Shearer's students entered the garage, Buchanan allegedly took out a gun and threatened them with it, then threatened a neighbor, who was trying to take out his garbage.

Perhaps Ms. Fairbanks omitted this example because she rationally fears that the right-wing lunatic would come after her with a gun. Either one, Pat or Hank.

Real Public Radio

The first three minutes of this week's News Quiz show how it's done.