Friday, April 30, 2004

Reinventing The L.A. Times Editorial Page

TBogg posts Hugh "Jass" Hewitt's Los Angeles Times op-ed page Dream Team, which Huge recommends to the page's new editor, Michael Kinsley. Huge's picks:

Roger L. Simon

Dennis Prager

Patt Morrison

Susan Estrich

Laura Ingraham

Max Boot

James Lileks

Charles Krauthammer

George Fwill

Mickey Kaus (but only if he learns to write)

So we have eight bats right, one bats left and one switch hitter. Oh, and a "guest column from the ranks of the bloggers," in case Kaus is caught using steriods or corking his head. The Times might as well just print the URL for Clownhall and save the cost of ink and paper.

Not only are Huge's choices convservative, they're also conservative. If the Times is going to make a change, why not line up some fresh voices, some up-and-coming talents, instead of fossils like Will, Prager and Kaus?

Why not recommend federal courts/gastrointestinal specialist Kaye Grogan:

With all due respect to the United States Supreme court, I don't think it sets a good example to be selective in what cases they will hear and won't hear. They should hear all cases that come before them. In the ongoing battle between what is really the meaning of separation between church and state, Virginia Military Institute (VMI) in Virginia, has been hanging out on a limb for quite awhile now, with no resolution in sight. What alternative is left after being rejected by the highest court in the land to hear their case? They could be hung out to dry. . .permanently

For many years the military institution has been saying grace before meals, until a lower federal court ruled the mealtime grace was unconstitutional. Baloney! Has anyone ever considered getting nauseated or heartburn after meals could be associated with not thanking God for their food?

Sure. The makers of Prilosec did, but they conspired with the ACLU to surpress the information for commercial gain.

Or how about European history expert Barbara Stock:

Oh, for the days when knights wore shining armor and came to the rescue of damsels in distress. They slew mythical dragons and searched for the Holy Grail. The world has a different kind of knight these days. King Arthur would take an axe to the Round Table if he were alive today.

And who would blame him for decapitating Billy Sardell?

Or to opine on L.A.'s primary industry, showbiz savant Richard Mullenax:

However, some of the celebrities that were at the [March for Women's Lives] flabbergasted me: Ashley Judd, Lisa Loeb, Salma Hayek, and Amy Jo Johnson, who starred in the once popular kid's television series ''Mighty Morphing Power Rangers.'' It was sad and disappointing for me to see such talented people support an unholy act of human ignorance. After all, these are the entertainers we give our hard-earned money to so that they may entertain us.

Dick lists the celebrities who "backed" the march, urges his reader to "[w]rite firm, but non-threatening, letters to any if not all of the entertainers and express your disappointment in them." And in Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie.

Sure, the average Hewitt listener may lack the ability to grasp such subtle writing, but we can't dumb down everything to the level of the Jassheads.

Thursday, April 29, 2004

Larry Elder Busts A Jig

Larry "Misdemeanor" Elder is not down with Senator John Kerry, because Kerry finds rap music interesting. Says Lar:

Despite "Jiggy Fly" Kerry's respect for "music" that, in some cases, calls women "bitches" and "hos," his message should be: "Hard work wins. You get out of life what you put into it. Avoid making bad moral mistakes. No matter how dire your circumstances, you have a moral obligation to attempt to better yourself. If your home lacks a good role model, seek out a teacher, relative, friend, member of the clergy, or neighborhood youth center or some other charitable or self-help organization."
Because you can't give that message, if you find rap music interesting. It's just not possible. But then Larry says that "'black America' ... continues to prosper" notwithstanding Kerry's affection for rap, so why the hell does Kerry have to give a responsibility lecture in the first place?

Larry also gives us the 411 on rap videos:

The jewelry-draped performers often bounce around with barely-dressed, jiggling women. The rappers rap about having sex, getting high or doing drugs -- often with a backdrop of a spacious mansion, equipped with swimming pool and Jacuzzi.

Damn, Larry, now you've spoiled the ending for me!

Larry also calls Kerry "Senator Dawg," confusing him with the junior senator from the Keystone State.

Jesse Taylor of is now writing a Top Ten Players list at It's as brilliant as everything he writes, although strangely eVote doesn't credit him as the author of the list.

I'm not sure what eVote is, but it also has an interesting article on blogs and the rumor about Texas Governor Rick Perry. The article's premise is somewhat overblown, and the topic sentence is just ludicrous: "On February 13th, 2004, the nature of the political dirty trick changed forever, but almost nobody noticed at the time." Oh really? 2/13/04 is the first time a "dirty" political rumor was reported on a blog? Do I even need to link to something here?

More Jesse Taylor, less hysteria, please.

The Right Of Free Eggspression

As previously noted, Matt Drudge will appear on C-SPAN's Washington Journal tomorrow at 8 a.m. Eastern time. I hope my fellow Republicans who are able to get through will query Drudge on the issues of the day:

Should Senator Kerry be eggscommunicated?

Why doesn't Bush have an eggsit strategy in Iraq?

Fertilized egg: life or nature's Viagra?

Karen Hughes: hard-boiled or cracked?

And, to Brian Lamb: Does it smell like sulphur right now?

Where Kaus Slept: Not In Vietnam!

Midget Mickey Kaus triumphantly trumpets -- with an exclamation point! -- his supposed debunking of a lie told by Senator Kerry. Kaus claims that Kerry lied when he said he did not sleep on the Mall in Washington D.C. while protesting the Vietnam War with his fellow veterans. The hairless hack unequivocally states:

Kerry didn't throw his own medals over the wall in that 1971 antiwar protest and he didn't sleep on the Mall with his Viet Vet buddies either. He snuck off and slept in a Georgetown townhouse.

But Kaus doesn't even begin to make his case for his assertion. The only source he cites is a Robert Sam Anson piece from the New York Observer in which Anson plainly does not state that Kerry slept at a Georgetown townhouse.

The hairless hack also sneers at Kerry's website for its denial of the charge:

Kerry's own Web site dismisses the Kerry-slept-in-Georgetown charge as an attempt to "smear him with the same unsubstantiated charge the Nixon White House used in 1971." Now not so unsubstantiated ... although I suppose Kerry will now claim he secretly snuck back to the Mall to sleep after the brandies in the library. ... (Emphasis added.)

Had Kaus bothered to read the Kerry page to which he links, he would have seen this:

In Fact, Kerry Biographer Says Kerry Slept on Mall, Used house for business and organizing (its not like he had a cell phone in 1971).

"Although he slept on the Mall, he [Kerry] used the Georgetown home of Oatsie and Robert Charles as a place to conduct business." [Douglas Brinkley, Tour of Duty, p. 364]

So the Kerry campaign's description of Kerry's activities is fully consistent with the Anson article, while Kaus's misreading of the article is not. And the website provides a source -- the Brinkley book -- which the hack didn't bother to consult.

Let's recap: Little Mick asserts, unequivocally, that Kerry "didn't sleep on the Mall .... He snuck off and slept in a Georgetown townhouse." He then links to an article which doesn't say that Kerry slept in a Georgetown townhouse, as proof of his claim. He then bashes the Kerry campaign for calling the charges "unsubstantiated" without bothering to substantiate the charges. And he insinuates that Kerry will have to change his story ("I suppose Kerry will now claim...") when Kerry's story is already consistent with the Anson piece.

That's got to be the Triple Crown of Hackery!

But that's not good enough for Kaus; he wants the Lifetime Acheivement Award. In a later post, Kaus simpers:

If Kerry spent only one night in Georgetown and several nights on the mall, why didn't he just say that, instead of denying the charge and letting his campaign call it a 'smear'? If he just drank brandy in the library (see Update), why doesn't he say that?

You see, it's Kerry's fault for denying the allegation that was made against him, rather than another one that exists only in Kaus's mind. ("Kerry failed to reveal that he drank brandy during the same time he was protesting the war!") And it's not Kaus's burden to present actual evidence for his own assertion. Here are my questions: If Kaus has no evidence that Kerry slept where he says he did, why doesn't he say that, instead of repeating a smear? When the Anson article doesn't say what Kaus claims, why doesn't Kaus just say that?

It's amusing -- and easy -- to point out Kaus's hate-fueled hackery, but the deviant workings of a small and twisted mind aren't all that important. The more significant matter is Kaus's bashing of Kerry on matters of little significance. Kerry served -- and slept -- in Vietnam, while Kaus, though fit for service, did not serve his country in the armed forces. Did Kaus protest the war or make any sacrifices to end the war? Who knows. But the fact that Kaus is obsessed with Kerry's sleeping arrangements and completely ignores the relevant issues behind the trivia -- the validity of the War in Vietnam, military service, the military draft, and the right to dissent against government policies -- demonstrates that Kaus is a man of no substance, unfit (though entitled) speak on any matters of national importance.

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

Who Said It?

The Bush administration lied America into war, and the damage to our credibility will be long-lasting and grave. Admitting the truth would help repair the harm.

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

The Passion of Mad Pat

With his own history of distorting the statements of others for rhetorical gain, it's fittingly ironic that Dr. Charles Quackhammer is being subjected to similar abuse by Pat Buchanan.

In a column in The American Conservative, Pat asks: "Speaking of blood libel, has there been one greater than Krauthammer's accusation that the Gospel of Jesus Christ paved the way to Auschwitz?" In an article mostly taking on Jewish critics of Mad Mel's Cruciflix, The Passion of The Christ, Buchanan writes:

In a Washington Post column titled "Gibson’s Blood Libel," Charles Krauthammer links the crucifixion story to "a history of centuries of relentless, and at times savage, persecution of Jews in Christian lands." For 2000 years, he says, the Catholic Church taught that "the Jews were Christ killers." Only at Vatican II did Rome take responsibility for the "baleful history" that came out of the "central story" of the Gospels.

The blood libel that this story [of the crucifixion] affixed upon the Jewish people had led to countless Christian massacres of Jews and prepared Europe for the ultimate massacre—6 million Jews systematically murdered in six years—in the heart, alas, of a Christian continent. It is no accident Vatican II occurred just two decades after the Holocaust, indeed in its shadow.

But Krauthammer stands truth on its head. Not until the ideas of Rousseau, Darwin, Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud had poisoned the soul of Europe and Christianity had lost the continent did Hitler and Stalin come to power to work their evil will upon Christians and Jews. Hitler learned his hatreds in Viennese gutters, not Catholic schools.

Actually, Quackhammer is suggesting not that the Gospels led to anti-semitic horrors, but that the pre-Vatican II teaching of the Passion story with a clear anti-semitic moral led to those horrors.

And Mad Pat insinuates that anti-semitic violence throughout the ages was the product not of Catholic teaching, but of the Enlightenment and liberal, "non-Christian" ideas such as evolution, communism and psychotherapy. Because anti-semitism didn't exist before 1760, as we all know.

Mad Pat's thesis is basically that millions of Christians loved the Passion -- as demonstrated by the fact that they paid nine bucks to see it, and there was a longer line at confession recently -- so if you criticize the film, you're guilty of a "hate crime" against those Christians. (Pat's words.) Plus no one at Pat's grade school ever called Jews "Christ killers." So bite me.

Pat then quotes himself as saying, "There is a religious war going on in our country for the soul of America," and says that those who hated The Passion "are, almost all, on the other side in that war." (Or: Judeo has always been at war with Christiania.) He also paraphrases Irving Kristol as stating that if American Jews know what's good for them -- if they wish "to maintain their separate and unique religious and ethnic character"-- they'll clam up and "not be in the vanguard of those seeking to prevent Christians from maintaining the Christian character of their country."

Anyway, Krauthammer can take care of himself, and Mad Pat surely would never "punch his lights out," as he imagines someone doing to Frank Rich. Maybe Pat's essay will help Chuck learn the consequences of misquoting and distorting. At least, we'd imagine, those Tribute to Saint Ronnie dinners in D.C. will be a bit livelier for the forseeable future.

(Link courtesy of Roy Edroso at alicublog.)

In Re: Correspondence

For once my e-mail from readers is actually outpacing that from my dedicated foreign correspondents such the widow Mariam Abacha and former Senator Pius Anyim. I read every e-mail I receive that doesn't look like spam or have a suspicious attachment, and try to respond to most of them. And I truly appreciate your comments and contributions. Please forgive me if I haven't responded, as it usually is just due to a lack of time.

Eggspose Hypocrisy

Here's an eggcellent opportunity for the little people who have basic cable to eggspose hypocrisy in high places. Matt Drudge has announced that he will be a guest on C-SPAN's Washington Journal this Friday morning. I hope my Republican readers (if you know what I mean) will eggsploit this opportunity to eggsamine Matt in eggscruciating detail on some of those eggsplosive rumors in current circulation. You know, the ones about Bill Bennett, Rush Limbaugh, the Bush family, and the like. (And others -- I'm not very well connected on this stuff.) Ask if Matt's developed any contacts on these stories, and if he's following up leads. If not, help him out with potential sources.

And if Brian Lamb gives you any lip, remind him about dogs and fleas.

Hate Radio

It's always instructive to watch the wingnuts lie.

Last week, Boston talk show host Jay Severin, a G.O.P. stalwart and veteran of several Republican political campaigns, said "I think we should kill them" while referring to Muslims.

Matthew Mills, the general manager of the station that employs Severin raised the purported defense that Severin would only kill all non-American Muslims, given the chance. According to Rabiah Ahmed: "[Mills] said that [Severin] wasn't talking about American Muslims, he was talking about Muslims outside the US."

According to the Boston Globe, Mills was lying.

The station, demonstrating the courage of its convictions, refused to provide the paper with a tape of the program. However, according to a transcript:

As part of his response [to a caller], Severin said, "I believe that Muslims in this country are a fifth column. . . . The vast majority of Muslims in this country are very obviously loyal, not to the United States, but to their religion. And I'm worried that when the time comes for them to stand up and be counted, the reason they are here is to take over our culture and eventually take over our country."

He said: "My suspicion is that the majority of Muslims in the United States, who regard themselves as Muslims first and not as Americans really at all, see an American map one day where this is the United States of Islam, not the United States of America. I think it pays to harbor those suspicions."

So Mills said that Severin was talking about Muslims outside the U.S., but Severin refers repeatedly to Muslims "in the country" and "in the United States."

Although the Globe does not a provide a complete copy of the transcript, it appears that nowhere before the "kill them" statement does Severin change the subject to foreign Muslims, or radical Muslims, or anti-American Muslims. In fact, the caller also refers to "Muslims in this country" right before Severin makes the kill comment.

A few weeks back, in a column bashing Air America, Severin claimed that liberals spent years "dismissing talk radio as a vast, embarrassing wasteland of doltish, bigoted, old, angry, overweight, religious white men named Chuck." Clearly they were wrong. In Beantown, talk radio is a vast, embarrassing wasteland of doltish, bigoted, old, angry, relatively slender, religious white men named Jay.

I'm going to make a special effort to praise Republicans who condemn this hateful bigot. If you see any, please let me know.

On the other hand, I'm also happy to give the spotlight to any bloviating GOP asswipes who stand up for Severin and decry "the crushing of dissent." (Link via Hesiod.)

Update: I've removed "like whores" from the end of the first sentence. Comparing Severin and his station manager to whores is disrespectful to whores.

Monday, April 26, 2004

Straight To Hale

The only thing that could improve this story is if Gluteus Maximus receives the maximum sentence.

A federal jury today found white supremacist Matthew Hale guilty of seeking the murder of a federal judge who had ruled against him in a civil case.

Hale, 32, was found guilty of four of five counts against him --ne of solicitation for murder and three of obstruction of justice.

The jury's verdict, announced this morning in the downtown Chicago courtroom of U.S. District Judge James Moody, came on the third day of deliberations in the case of the one-time "Pontifex Maximus" of the former World Church of the Creator.
Next Week, They Start Collecting DNA Samples

You can now contribute to the presidential candidate of your choice through Senator Kerry is leading Bush by over $100,000 at present, with a total of $135,050 in donations. When you click on the link to donate for Bush, the site reads:

Customers who bought this candidate also bought:

-- Lies About Weapons of Mass Destruction

-- Hundreds of Billions of Dollars Worth of Death and Destruction, packaged as light entertainment on basic cable news

-- Unconscionable Deficits Which Will Burden The Country For Generations

-- Security, At The Cost Of Liberty (not currently available)

Customers interested in this candidate may also be interested in:

Freelance Jobs. $2.95

Hundreds of work-at-home jobs. Start your work at home career now.

And someone (or more than one person) actually gave Lyndon LaRouche 300 clams. Stay tuned for an announcement regarding the launch of the Roger Ailes 2004 Exploratory Committee.

Fondle A Fundie

Nick Pistof, the Evangelical Avenger, writes:

And in polite society, conservative Christians -- especially Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses -- are among the last groups it's still acceptable to mock.

Could someone remind Nick that many of his maltreated evangelicals don't think that Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses are Christians. Now that's tolerance!

We also suspect that no research was committed in the preparation of this sentence:

But on many campuses, it's easier to find people who can discuss the Upanishads than the "Left Behind" books about Jesus' Second Coming — which, with more than 40 million copies, are the best-selling American novels of our age.

Pisty's column is full of such unsubstantiated assertions -- Exactly which campuses are those? Exactly which "polls show that evangelical Christians are more likely to contribute to charities that help the needy?" (And more likely than who?) I guess I'm too impolite to get invited to the elite Jehovah's Witness-bashing parties that are all the rage.

Kristof concludes, "It's always easy to point out the intolerance of others. Why, this column took me less than 20 minutes to write."

Josh Marshall is proposing to cover the Democratic and Republican conventions this summer and report on the proceedings at As a columnist for The Hill as well as one of the most eloquent writers who blogs, Marshall is certainly likely to get press-credentialed access to both venues.

I hope the Democratic Party provides at least some sort of convention access to progressive bloggers without SCLM ties, including those linked at the DNC's own blog, Kicking Ass, and/or many of the fine writers listed to the right.

This isn't self-promotion, since I have neither the time nor the abilities to undertake such an effort. I will happily follow the Democratic convention from my couch, watching on C-SPAN. (Plus, my meager talents for ridicule would be much better used at the Republican National Convention.) But I would eagerly read dispatches from Boston from the many lefty bloggers I read daily.

And it would help the Dems get their story out while the mighty mainstream media flatulates on and on about Wafergate, Medalomania and Teresa's taxes.

Sunday, April 25, 2004

Howie "the Putz" Kurtz challenges Kevin Drum to a debate.

A debate with Peggy Noonan.

I would pay to see that.
Is there anyone at USA Toady who didn't know Jack Kelley was making shit up?

Roger's Bad Taste Corner

Jesse Taylor at links to a Republican National Convention contest in which Republicans aged 18-24 years are supposed to "Stand Up And Holla!" by composing a short essay which "answers this question (sic): Why is the President's call to community service important and how have you demonstrated it?"

Channelling the types of Young (and old) Republicans who are prominent on the 'net and elsewhere, I've come up with this:

My Community Service, by a Hipublican

I'm gonna holla!

I'm a GOP-baller!

I'ma bitch-smack anyone prayin' to Allah!

Dead fuckin' meat all over Ramallah!*

N' fuck them losers livin' in squalor!

Rudy shoot their asses with a service revolva!

Keep 'em outta sight, build the wall taller!

But service is my right when my crime is white collar!

I'm Karl Rove Jnr., right down to the pallor!

Like Ken Mehlman's dick, nobody's smaller!

* No military service offered or implied by this sentiment.

Saturday, April 24, 2004

A very funny Mark Stamaty cartoon. Although Karen Hughes looks unsettlingly like Bill Clinton.

The Onion Or Not?

SALT LAKE CITY - A couple on the Atkins Diet have a beef with a local restaurant after being booted from the buffet for eating too much meat.

Isabelle Leota, 29, and her husband Sui Amaama, 26, both on the no-carb diet, were dining Tuesday at a Chuck-A-Rama in the Salt Lake City suburb of Taylorsville when the manager cut them off because they'd eaten too much roast beef.

"It's so embarrassing actually," said Leota. "We went in to have dinner, we were under the impression Chuck-A-Rama was an all you can eat establishment."

Not so, said Jack Johanson, the restaurant chain's district manager.

"We've never claimed to be an all-you-can-eat establishment," said Johanson. "Our understanding is a buffet is just a style of eating."

The general manager was carving the meat, and became concerned about having enough for other patrons, Johanson said. So when Amaama went up for his 12th slice, the manager asked Amaama to stop.


The couple are finishing their second week of the Atkins Diet, which requires taking in little to no carbohydrates, and they eat at Chuck-A-Rama's $8.99 buffet at least twice a week because of its convenience.

"You can just go there and just eat meat," said Leota, a mother of two.


The couple said they won't return to the restaurant.

"I don't have any desire to go there ever again," said Leota.
Book festival geeks can catch parts of the Los Angeles Times Book Festival on C-SPAN2 this weekend.

Assuming they get C-SPAN2, of course.

Tomorrow's programming features (at 1 P.M. Eastern) a panel on the War Against Iraq with Robert Scheer and Snitchley Hitchens. Apparently the Festival featured (and C-SPAN televised) an Iraq panel with the same panelists last year. If C-SPAN was smart, it would run last year's panel immediately before this year's. But it's not, so it's running a speech with Faux News know-nothing John Gibson.

Why doesn't anyone ever take my advice?

At Corrente, Lambert asks:

So why is it OK for Bush to run a campaign ad of rescue workers taking a flag-draped coffin out of the WTC ruins, and it's not OK for our free press to run a picture of a flag-draped coffin coming back from Iraq?

(The text of the ad and a description of the images used in the ad are here.)

Louses Of The Holy

From Tristero, here's a brilliant essay on the abuse of religion in public debate. My favorite paragraph:

And liberals should not buy into the right wing framing of the issue that equates a well deserved disrespect for cynical political operatives with disrespect of religion. Most of this country, left, center, sideways and right, is religious. We all have an equal obligation to respect others and disrepect others who deliberately violate that respect for political gain. The right wing have shown themselves increasingly intolerant of everyone who disagrees with them. The time is long overdue to tell them to take their fake piety and shove it.

Tristero's also got some great stuff on the extent to which the crackpot delusions of Laurie Mylroie have infected the highest levels of the Administration.

Grand Old Police Blotter: Kumbaya Edition

From Wired:

The panel [investigating voting machine irregularties in California] discovered last November that Diebold had installed uncertified software on the machines.

The voting panel also recommended to Shelley that he ask the state attorney general to examine the possibility of bringing civil and criminal charges against Diebold for violating California election codes, which state that vendors cannot change software without notifying the secretary of state's office. The codes also say that no vendor can install uncertified software on voting systems.

"This doesn't solve the problems," said Tab Iredale, a Diebold developer. "It just sets a tone of confrontation at a time when we should be working together to address issues with the certification process."

Tab added, "Diebold grew up in a non-supportive home environment, and is currently undergoing therapy to understand the root causes of its inability to respond appropriately in its interactions with authority figures."

Brian Linse of Ain't No Bad Dude says that Bush is starting to take more and stronger heat from libertarians in the blogsphere such as Matt Welch. This is how we separate true libertarians from insipid warflogging knee-jerk Bush apologists. (No link necessary.)

Brian also received some ice cream from the good people at True Majority. Mmmmm... ice cream.


I don't care whether the Catholic Church boots Senator Kerry or not; that's none of my concern.

But, as Atrios points out, there are numerous Roman Catholics who share Kerry's position on the right of American women to choose an abortion -- including Mayor Rudolph Guiliani, Governor George Pataki, Predator Arnold Schwarzenegger and Director of Homeland Security Tom Ridge.

Which demonstrates that those, like the circle-jerking squares over in The Corner who endorse Kerry's excommunication are religious frauds who happily abandon their pretense of piety for the greater good of partisan politics. Cafeteria Catholics indeed.

It's a certainty at least three of the four Republican pols named above will speak in prime-time during the RNC Convention held in New York City this August and September. (As will their congenial host, pro-choice non-Catholic Mayor Michael Bloomberg.) How many Pukes will turn their backs on the men and pray for them, as George Bush's homestate delegation did in 2000 when Representative Jim Kolbe gave his three-minute speech?

Friday, April 23, 2004

Lead Us Not Into Fucking Stupidity

According to Marvin Olasky, "exaggerating" is now the preferred term for making shit up. Says Marvin, "Evangelical reporter Jack Kelley, fired from USA Today for exaggerating and plagiarizing stories over many years, yesterday apologized for making 'serious mistakes.'"


So when a woman who drowned fleeing Cuba by boat is found alive and well in America, the possibility of resurrection must be considered.

And while the three decapitated heads with blinking eyes that rolled down an street in Israel never existed, Kelley may have been recounting a divinely-inspired vision of the Holy Trinity, thus conveying a larger truth to the unsaved.

And when thousands of dollars in bogus expense vouchers were cashed, Jack was in throes of unholy torment from Old Scratch, and no one was around to cast the demons into nearby swine.

It seems like only last year that Marvin was advising the New York Times to "add[] biblical evangelicals and orthodox Jews" to its staff because those folks were "likely to produce stories that have a firmer foundation than just snappy prose." Yeah, that should work wonders.

Here's some other possibilities for you to consider, Marv. Perhaps Mr. Kelley was exaggerating about his religious beliefs. Or maybe he was tempted by hanging around with people who think that lies are only exaggerations if they were told by the right kind of Christian.

(Link via World O'Lasky ... er ... World O'Crap.)

Thursday, April 22, 2004

How Sharper Than A Serpent's Tooth

You'd think that after the old man kept his drunken ass out of Vietnam, Junior Dress-Up would at least have the courtesy not to call Poppy a spineless appeaser.

"The Iraqi people are looking ... at America and saying, are we going to cut and run again? That's what they're thinking as well,'' Bush said. "We're not going to cut and run if I'm in the Oval Office.''

But you'd be wrong.

Full Disclosure

Remember the hue and cry when 60 Minutes aired the interview with counterterrorism expert Richard Clarke, but failed to disclose that Clarke's book was published by another subsidiary of CBS parent Viacom?


Remember the hue and cry every time NBC fails to disclose in its numerous reports on the invasion of Iraq that its parent, General Electric, has multimillon dollar government contracts for the reconstruction of Iraq? Not to mention the untold millions it made on building the arsenal for the destruction of Iraq.

Didn't think so.

Not Entirely Grand Old Police Blotter: Green Day Edition

In a rare display of bipartisanship, and in honor of Earth Day, the Blotter reports on the budding criminal careers of Republicans and Democrats alike.

The (presumed) Dem is the wife of Democratic Senator Max Baucus. The Reliable Source reports:

Wanda Baucus, 56, is an anthropologist and painter who told court officials she now works on the Senate staff. Before obtaining an arrest warrant, a police officer talked to the alleged victim, Tierney Barron, 44, and three people who saw the incident in the parking lot at Johnson's Flower and Garden Center.

According to an affidavit filed to support the warrant, it all began while an employee was loading mulch into Barron's car and Baucus parked in a way that blocked Barron from leaving. As so often happens, "the two subjects exchanged words," states the affidavit.

While Barron sat in her car, Baucus "struck her in the face," the affidavit says. Barron got out and "the defendant continued to strike her upper body several times." Barron suffered a swollen cheek and scratches, the affidavit says.

Baucus got in her car and drove away -- then called police to report an assault. She returned to the scene with her husband, according to Channel 4, which had a camera there. She gave conflicting statements about the altercation, police said.

I guess she lost her composture.

As an e-mailer points out, and as Baucus's own website demonstrates, Baucus has a pretty high DINO rating. The site also reveals why Mrs. Baucus was so happy to take her husband's last name when they married.

In the same column, we learn of a young but not so bright staffer leaving the Republican Party for the a Green Party:

Last week the Capitol Police busted a young intern working for Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) for toting a baggie of pot and a bong into the Cannon House Office Building, but they'll have to look the other way when stockbroker Irvin Rosenfeld brings his stash onto their territory today.

Had the intern been in Paul's home state of Texas -- and had he lacked Republican connections -- he'd soon be starting his five-year prison sentence. One of the hazards of too much dope smoking is that you start to take seriously the libertarian rhetoric of your boss.

Here's a partially redacted copy of the independent investigation of former USA Toady reporter Jack Kelley.

We hope this helps the McPaper to recognize its strengths and weaknesses and speeds up its transformation into an all reality-TV-show-recap publication. And they should rehire Larry King.


"[Bush] reminds me of a man I know who was imprisoned in Vietnam. We went to lunch in a place with short candles on the table. I was asking about the Hanoi Hilton. A waiter walked by and bumped the table, which made a candle tilt against a wicker basket full of bread. The basket was lined with paper napkins, which went up in flames. The man didn't change his tone of voice as he continued his story, quietly picked up the flaming basket, placed it on the floor and softly stepped on it with his large right shoe. The flames went out. He continued his narrative as he eyed a waiter, handed him the smoking basket and asked for more bread. President Bush reminds me of that guy. He would not offer sensitive or witty commentary on how odd it is to be surprised by fire on a spring day, but he would put the fire out."

In truth, he'd call his old man to ensure that he was kept 5,000 miles away from the fire, and have the government send someone else to put the fire out for him.

Nooners also says that Kerry reminds her of a sad, hollow tree, like the one in which she stores her nuts.

Rating: One and one-half magic dolphins.

p.s. -- I'm certain I first read the sobriquet "Pegaloon" somewhere else, but I can't remember where. If anyone knows, please let me know.

Update (4/23): A reader advises that TBogg is the originator of the word "Pegaloon," in this post from last November.

Wingnut Dominoes

They've lost Bruce Bartlett.

Fortunately for them, no one reads Bartlett.

God Ate My Homework

Why Kelley -- a devout Christian who once told a magazine that he was drawn to journalism because "God has called me to proclaim truth" -- perpetrated such frauds remains a mystery. In his statement e-mailed to the newspaper Wednesday, he seemed mystified himself.

"I am now committed to taking the time to try to understand how I came to violate the principles I hold dear," his statement continues. "At the end of this process, I hope that I will be able to talk about all of this at greater length, in a way that may help others avoid making the mistakes I made."
Let me clear it up for you Jack: You lied. Then, when you got caught, you lied some more. Then you hired an attorney to threaten your employer for calling you a liar.

There were no mistakes, there were lies.

How did you violate the principles you don't actually hold dear? By lying.

In summary, you are a liar.

Is that clear enough for you?

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

As a lefty blogger who linked incessantly to stories about Jack Kelley's fraudulent reporting at USA Toady, I'm going to claim all the credit for the resignation of the paper's senior editor, Karen Jurgensen, in the wake of the scandal.

Of course, I had nothing to do with it, but it's my birthright as a blogger to think everything revolves around my noble efforts.

What do you mean that only works for right-wing bloggers?

Jonah Goldberg, Lying Sack of Shit

Girlyboy Jonah Goldberg, once again doing his research with one hand on his mouse and his brain on idle, is the latest dolt to misquote and distort -- that is, lie about -- Barbara Kingsolver.

Bat boy "quotes" Kingsolver as follows:

"Patriotism threatens free speech with death... It despises people of foreign birth. It has specifically blamed homosexuals, feminists and the American Civil Liberties Union. In other words, the American flag stands for intimidation, censorship, violence, bigotry, sexism, homophobia and shoving the Constitution through a paper shredder. Whom are we calling terrorists here?"
Here's the full paragraph:

Patriotism seems to be falling to whoever claims it loudest, and we're left struggling to find a definition in a clamor of reaction. This is what I'm hearing: Patriotism opposes the lone representative of democracy who was brave enough to vote her conscience instead of following an angry mob. (Several others have confessed they wanted to vote the same way, but chickened out.) Patriotism threatens free speech with death. It is infuriated by thoughtful hesitation, constructive criticism of our leaders and pleas for peace. It despises people of foreign birth who've spent years learning our culture and contributing their talents to our economy. It has specifically blamed homosexuals, feminists and the American Civil Liberties Union. In other words, the American flag stands for intimidation, censorship, violence, bigotry, sexism, homophobia, and shoving the Constitution through a paper shredder? Who are we calling terrorists here? Outsiders can destroy airplanes and buildings, but it is only we, the people, who have the power to demolish our own ideals.

If you read the entire Kingsolver article, you'll see that she's referring to specific incidents, including the death threats that Barbara Lee received for voting against a bill giving Bush wide authority to use military force in response to the 9/11 attacks, and the death of a Sikh man whose killer proclaimed that he was an American. The reference to patriotism blaming gays, feminists and the ACLU is patently a reference to the statements of Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell made after 9/11. In short, Kingsolver is describing and criticizing how other people have defined (or demonstrated) patriotism, as is clear to any literate person.

Bat Boy isn't satisfied with distorting the meaning of the quote, however. He's got to rewrite it to fit his thesis. Without indicating the omission, Goldberg eliminates the reference to foreign-born persons "who've spent years learning our culture and contributing their talents to our economy." And he omits the question mark at the end of the second to last sentence, which demonstrates that Kingsolver is questioning how others define patriotism rather than offering her own definition. Because to leave it in would reveal Jonah's fraud.

There are two explanations here: Either Bat Boy read the article and deliberately misquoted Kingsolver, or (my guess) he lazily trawled the sewers of his mother's racist bulletin board (or freerepublic, clownhall, etc.) and stole the misquote from some other fraud.

Goldberg could have gotten the quote right had he spent 0.23 seconds on Google. Hell, he could have even found the accurate quote, with link -- albeit accompanied by an equally dishonest commentary -- on the National Review website. But that would require some integrity, and effort.

Not all of Jonah's statements are nearly so moronic or ill-timed, but... Ah, screw it.... All of Jonah's statements are equally as moronic and ill-timed.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Diebold Another Day

The Oakland Tribune, of all places, is advancing the story about the problems with Diebold computer voting machines in California. Here's the start of today's front page story:

Attorneys for Diebold Election Systems Inc. warned in late November that its use of uncertified vote-counting software in Alameda County violated California election law and broke its $12.7 million contract with Alameda County.

Soon after, a review of internal legal memos obtained by the Oakland Tribune shows Diebold's attorneys at the Los Angeles office of Jones Day realized the McKinney, Texas-based firm also faced a threat of criminal charges and exile from California elections.

Yet despite warnings from the state's chief elections officer, Diebold continued fielding poorly tested, faulty software and hardware in at least two of California's largest urban counties during the Super Tuesday primary, when e-voting temporarily broke down and voters were turned away at the polls.

And here's more:

Starting Wednesday, California elections regulators will debate punishing Diebold for fielding unapproved voting systems in violation of state law. They could ban the use of some or all Diebold equipment in California elections, even bar the nation's second largest voting-systems provider from doing business in the largest state.


At the time, Jones Day already was scoping potential defenses to a California False Claims Act suit against Diebold that is filed under seal and not publicly available.

If the plaintiffs prove that Diebold knowingly made misrepresentations to local governments to win voting-systems contracts, such as its $12.7 million sale to Alameda County and its $31 million sale to San Diego County, Diebold could face punitive damages for up to three times the contracts' value.

I wonder if this is enough to kill Diebold's "Accountability Last" version of electronic voting in California and across the country.

Roger's Unauthorized Practice of Medicine

If you're one of the tens of millions of Americans who doesn't have health insurance, my advice is register to vote.

Then, you can either vote for John Kerry or pretend to be a swing voter. It could save your life.

Who Said Republicans Have No Sense Of Humor?

Well, me, for one. But they've pretty much conceded the point:

Republican wiseguys on Capitol Hill are distributing the "Official 2004 Democratic National Committee Convention Program," or so they insist.

The schedule of events includes a series of antiwar rallies, each followed by Sen. Ted Kennedy proposing a toast; a re-enactment of John Kerry's fake medal toss; tributes to Spain and France; and a homosexual "marriage" ceremony.

We'll let you know when Democrats obtain the "official" agenda of the Republican National Convention.

Stop, you're killing me.

Bossie Books

For those asking "Whatever happened to David Bossie," the answer is not death by autoerotic asphyxiation... whatever gave you that crazy idea?

Bossie, former toady to foamer Senator Lauch Faircloth, was last seen in August 2003, when he was congratulating George Bush on his "remarkable job" in Iraq, and last November, when he wrote an article bashing my good friend George Soros.

More recently, the subliterate scribe has given up the short form to write not one, but two, hefty tomes for WorldNutDaily Books: Intelligence Failure: How Clinton's National Security Policy Set the Stage for 9/11, due out June 3, and The Many Faces of John Kerry, due July 22.

The later release date on the second book is understandable, given that investigative journalist Bossie hasn't figured out who Democratic candidate will be. Bossie's publisher blurbs the book as follows:

Using the in-depth, investigative reporting he's become known for, Bossie will give readers the real scoop on the upcoming presidential election's Democratic nominee -- exposing his (or her) voting record, relevant family history, political influences, real stances on issues, chances for winning, and any shady or unethical dealings the candidate would rather not have the electorate know about. David Bossie, who has previously co-written two such books, has the access and the hard-nosed reporter's savvy to ferret out the truth about whoever the candidate turns out to be and present it to readers in a gripping, no-nonsense style.

Even without that basic information, the talented Bossie has already selected a title for the book and has assured his publisher it will run exactly 208 pages. You can't ask for more than that.

Monday, April 19, 2004

The Cost of War

Stephen Moore, in the New York Times:

"We don't want to put troops into a situation that is increasingly a public-relations problem for the president," said Stephen Moore, president of the Club for Growth, a group of conservative political donors. "No one wants body bags coming home in September and October."

(Thanks to reader Jim Fiala for the link; see also Pandagon for an opposing view.)

The Editors Of The Moonie Times Show Their Deep Respect For Condi

"Miss Rice"

In Memoriam

Today is the anniversary of two terrible events:

On April 19, 1993, the end of the standoff at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas occurred when David Koresh and his followers set their dwelling, themselves and their children on fire. The beginning of the standoff occurred 51 days earlier, when Koresh and his followers brutally murdered four ATF agents executing a search warrant. Every death that occurred at the Waco compound in February and April 1993 is the responsibility of Koresh and his followers, and no one else.

On April 19, 1995, terrorist Timothy McVeigh and his accomplice, Terry Nichols, murdered 168 men, women and children when McVeigh detonated a truck bomb at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Contrary to the claims of fantasists like Laurie Mylroie and Janya Davis, the bombing was the product of home-grown racists and bigots, not Saddam Hussein. (Sadly, some of the survivors and victims' families have bought into that tripe.)

On April 19, 2004, news coverage of the anniversaries is minimal. There's some news about the state trial of convicted terrorist Nichols, but almost nothing on the child-molesting sociopath Koresh, whom the wingnuts and Congressional Republicans tried to rehabilitate as some sort of latter-day Davy Crockett. I hope that those who still seek to excuse these crimes or shift or spread the blame will give a second's thought to the murdered ATF agents, the public servants who were killed in service of this country, and the children who were Koresh's holy sacrifices and McVeigh's "collateral damage." For the sake of their own humanity.

And God Is My Father-In-L---


At a recent dinner party hosted by New York Times D.C. bureau chief Philip Taubman and his wife, Times reporter Felicity Barringer, and attended by Arthur Sulzberger Jr., Maureen Dowd, Steven Weisman, and Elisabeth Bumiller, [Condoleezza] Rice was reportedly overheard saying, "As I was telling my husb--" and then stopping herself abruptly, before saying, "As I was telling President Bush." Jaws dropped, but a guest says the slip by the unmarried politician, who spends weekends with the president and his wife, seemed more psychologically telling than incriminating. Nobody thinks Bush and Rice are actually an item. A National Security Council spokesman laughed and said, "No comment."

Actually, it's more journalistically telling and incriminating.

Sunday, April 18, 2004

Bush Deals The Race Card From The Bottom of The Deck

A reader points me to this gem from the Bush press conference, in which Bush tackled a strawman:

BUSH: .... Some of the debate really center (sic) around the fact that people don't believe Iraq can be free; that if you're Muslim, or perhaps brown-skinned, you can't be self-governing and free. I strongly disagree with that. I reject that, because I believe that freedom is the deepest need of every human soul, and, if given a chance, the Iraqi people will be not only self-governing, but a stable and free society.

Let's see. Who said that if you're Muslim, or perhaps brown-skinned, you can't be self-governing and free?

Oh, I remember. These guys.

(Link via

Bullshit, Not Ballots

Condoleezza Rice, who couldn't concieve of terrorists using an airplane as a missile, has no problem imagining that terrorists would seek to throw the Presidential election to John Kerry. Here's the smear:

WASHINGTON -- The United States is bracing for possible terrorist attacks before the November presidential election, national security adviser Condoleezza Rice said Sunday.

The opportunity for terrorists to try to influence the election, as was the case last month in Spain, appears to be an opportunity that would "be too good to pass up for them," Rice said.

"I think that we do have to take very seriously the thought that the terrorists might have learned, we hope, the wrong lesson from Spain," Rice told "Fox News Sunday."

"I think we also have to take seriously that they might try during the cycle leading up to the election to do something," she said.

Don't worry, Condi. There's nothing the terrorists could do which would cause me to vote for your idiot boss.

Other Peoples' Deaths

According to Plan of Attack, Book By A Hack:

Powell felt Cheney and his allies -- his chief aide, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby; Deputy Defense Secretary Paul D. Wolfowitz; and Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Douglas J. Feith and what Powell called Feith's "Gestapo" office -- had established what amounted to a separate government. The vice president, for his part, believed Powell was mainly concerned with his own popularity and told friends at a dinner he hosted a year ago celebrating the outcome of the war that Powell was a problem and "always had major reservations about what we were trying to do."
I'm less interested in Powell's ass-saving analogy than the fact that Draft-avoiding Dick threw a dinner party celebrating the "outcome" of the war. People continue to die one year later because of Cheney's desire for a theme party.

Powell, meanwhile, needs to complete his analogy with reference to his own role.

Saturday, April 17, 2004

Some Of Us Much Sooner Than Others

Asked by Woodward how history would judge the war, Bush replied: "History. We don't know. We'll all be dead."

It's Official

Any review of a book which is not entirely complimentary of George W. Bush which is published in the New York Times must include the words conspiracy theory, preferably in the first paragraph.

Once you get past the mandatory dismissal, however, you might learn something. Like this:

"[Craig Unger] even puts a price tag on the Saudis' contributions to the Bush family: a staggering $1.476 billion, paid out over 30 years as gifts to Bush-related charities, as generous perks (including a Saudi-sponsored European hunting trip for George H. W. Bush and his 1991 gulf war cabinet just after the November 2000 general election) and as investments in Bush-related businesses like Harken Energy or the Carlyle Group."



Strong Leader

Bold Action

Big Ideas

Peace in World

More Compassionate America

Cares About People Like Me

Leads a Strong Team

You forgot "Miserable Failure."

Notes From A Circle Jerk

bloggers "giving journalism an enema"

I'll pass on that one.

Scary Sully

Sully, or, as the Moonies call him, "Andres Sullivan," did reference the failed prosecution of Captain James Yee in his Weekly Dish column. The comment is essentially a reprint of his entry on his growingly influential blog; it doesn't mention the Washington Times' role in appending an anti-Muslim moral to the bogus charges.

It's also interesting to see that the Moonie Times has placed scare quotes around "marriage" in Sully's item on gay marriage and polling. Seriously: why does Sully allow these bigots to tamper with his work product?

Friday, April 16, 2004

More pointless: Dave Winer or Tiffany Shlain?

Nuts From The Underground

The right-wing blogosphere is the New Underground. Their livelihoods and, yes, their very lives, threatened by a death-dealing Senator Hillary Clinton, these rebel souls were driven underground, like the A-Team, or the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

So says Richard Poe, who surfaced, pale and mole-like, just long enough to pimp his latest tome from World Nut Daily Books.

The premise of the book is that Hillary Clinton "understood the power of the Internet and 'vowed to crush it before it could expose her crimes.'" Poe's publisher promises that the book delivers the following thrilling and highly credible revelations:

Hillary's success in purging Andrew Sullivan at The New Republic ... and her inability (so far) to stifle his growing influence online.

That's a new one. Since Sully's still on the TNR masthead and presumably gets paid for those idiotic "fiskings" TNR regularly publishes, Hillary's effectiveness is vastly overrated. Kind of like Sully's "growing influence online."

How the New Underground exposed the Clintons' connection to Iran-Contra.

I missed that expose too. Did the Clintons sell weapons to Iran or funnel money to the Contras? Or both?

How the New Underground knew Ken Starr was the wrong man for job ... and how the Clinton's (sic) couldn't have asked for anyone better.

How did they know? Starr leaked it to them.

The Clinton "body count."

Sully should be grateful Hillary didn't waste him.

The down and dirty on the Clintons' harassment of David Horowitz and Drudge, including how Sidney Blumenthal's $30 million suit against Drudge was ordered by the White House.

And so on for 272 pages of large print and wide margins, cut-and-pasted from the bowels of the 'Net with meticulous care.

World Nut Daily must be the most economically efficient publisher around -- it keeps selling the same book to the gullible and chinless time and time again.

Bush Knew

The most accurate news source in America and an equally well-respected journalist have presented incontrovertible evidence that the Bush Administration had advance warning of a terrorist attack upon New York City four months before September 11, 2001. Here is their exclusive:

"Acting upon evidence compiled by Davis, David Schippers (former chief investigator for the impeachment of Bill Clinton) demanded a June 2001 meeting with Attorney General John Ashcroft to prevent what he prophetically termed 'terrorists blowing up Lower Manhattan.'"

As we all know, Ashcroft and the administration failed to act on this information. And Ashcroft failed to disclose the meeting during his appearance before the 9/11 Commission.

If any more proof of the accuracy of this revelation is needed, consider this: The publishing house which uncovered this scandal is also the publisher of General John Ashcroft. Would a company publish a book accusing one of its own authors of such gross negligence and dereliction of duty if the allegation was untrue?

More Coming Attractions

Speaking of James Wolcott, his book Attack Poodles and Other Media Mutants: The Looting of The News in a Time of Terror is coming out in June 2004. No details from the publisher yet, but from last night's Majority Report, it sounds like Wolcott has made substantial sacrifices -- including monitoring Faux News -- in order to research the book.

Coming Attractions

Rush and Molloy report that the film version of the Joe Conason/Gene Lyons masterpiece, the The Hunting of the President, will be released sometime between now and November.

Apparently Rush and Molloy haven't read the book, since they include the film version in a list of movies by "anti-Bush filmmakers" who are "ready to do battle with [George Bush] in the movie theaters."

While former President G.H.W. Bush is mentioned numerous times in the book (e.g., "alleged extramarital affairs, [p.] 76"), and Neilsie "John" Bush even rates a mention, there's no reference to Dubya in the index to The Hunting of the President. So unless Bush is releasing his own film the same weekend as Harry Thomason's picture, or Bush has challenged Thomason to a fistfight at the Silver City Cineplex, there won't be a battle between Thomason and the presumptive Republican nominee in theaters this year.

Thursday, April 15, 2004

Pissing On The Parade

"[T]his real Trump, like our real president, is a rich daddy's boy, who came into the world with his real-estate developer father's $40 million dollars, housing empire, and considerable connections to the Brooklyn Democratic party, out of which came New York mayor Abraham Beame and New York governor Hugh Carey. (If you want to know how Trump has been able to build just about whatever he wants in New York City, all you need to know are two words: campaign contributions.) Trump is a creation of family wealth and affiliations, and serendipity. He bought his first piece of property in the recession-deep New York of the 1970s when, eager to "revitalize," New York officials were almost giving property away with enormous tax abatements. From there, Trump made the fateful decision to purchase no less than three Atlantic City casinos, which shortly began to compete against each other, severely reducing profits for Trump's company.

"But, then, according to a former Trump lieutenant, John R. O'Donnell, an embittered casualty of Trump's lack of business acumen whose book about Trump -- Trumped! -- Trump has never legally contested, Trump never bothered to learn anything about the casino business before he spent tens of millions in New Jersey. He never tried to pick up any knowledge about the airline industry before he tried and failed to buy American Airlines; or about the business of professional football before he purchased the New Jersey Generals and offered such exorbitant, unprecedented salaries that he helped drive the United States Football League out of business. In 1988, he signed a contract to buy a racehorse named Alibi, changing its name to DJ Trump--he has reduced the profits of his companies by spending millions to get his name on every inch of every property that he owns--and nearly killed the animal when Trump insisted that the horse continue practice-racing when he had a cold. Because of Trump's pushy arrogance, the colt got so sick he almost died and had to have his hooves amputated. He'll never race. As a result, after almost destroying the horse, Trump refused to pay the owner who had sold Alibi, even though Trump had signed his name to papers promising to buy him."

Ahhhh... That felt good.

(I told you I was feeling pissy.)

The Right Thing To Do

Andy Sullivan's on his high horse about the Army's prosecution of Capt. James Yee, the chaplain falsely accused of mishandling classified documents while assigned to the prison camps at Guantanamo Bay. Sniffs Sully, upon hearing the news that authorities have dropped all charges against Yee, "[t]his story is a travesty of justice and fairness. And no one really seems to give a damn."

No one except thousands of Americans, including the types of left-wing bloggers Sully sneers at. Back in November 2003, a fifth-columnist blogger from a decadent coastal enclave took time out from hottubbing with Talibanofascists to criticize the right-wing hacks who prejudged Captain Yee's guilt in furtherance of their own agendas. Here's what that blogger said:

To be sure, these blowhards all inserted "allegedly" or the like somewhere in their columns, no doubt at the insistence of their syndicates' lawyers. But from their prose you know they were all well lubricated by the idea of a Muslim traitor in the U.S. Army.

These cretinous columnists have two things in common: (1) The source of their reports: The Moonie Times; [and] (2) You know they won't revisit Captain Yee's story any time soon.

Yes, the Moonie Times was behind the most scurrilous "reporting" of the charges against Captain Yee. If Sully wants people to give a damn about the mistreatment of Captain Yee, he has a perfect platform from which to correct the record: His Weekly Dish column in the Moonie Times.

Name some names, Sully -- starting with John Leo and Moonie Times columnists Gaffney, Charen and Malkin -- and detail your employer's disgraceful, foul and malicious role Captain Yee's persecution. It's right thing to do.

My man James Wolcott (in the sense of admiration; he's not my valet or my lover) and Ron Suskind, author of "The Price of Loyalty" and the DiIulio article in Esquire are on The Majority Report tonight.

I may have to brave the hell that is streaming audio to hear this one. Wolcott's article on the Fox News Channel is the best I've read on the subject.

A Deal Breaker

Warning: This item has no political content. It just amuses me.

"Platten's friend Jordana Stein freaked out when she went to a young man's room after a date and discovered that he shaved his chest. On the other hand, Lisette Wehner, a construction company employee from Crofton, walked out on a date who had too much hair.

"She had offered to massage his back sans shirt and when he rolled over, 'he had the hairiest back I'd ever seen. It was like running my hands through my hair. I said I have to go home now. I got up, dressed and left.'"
Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness

Charles Pierce, who knows more about Catholicism -- and Beantown -- than I do, takes on Saint Kit's papal bullshite in the New York Times:

I, however, was bit baffled to find the Paulists described by Seelye first on April 11 as "a kind of New Age church that describes itself as a 'worship community of Christians in the Roman Catholic tradition." On April 12, Seelye wrote pretty much the same story, except that now the Paulists were "a nontraditional church." To which I responded, as Augustine once did to the people of Hippo, "What the f**k is this?"

The Paulists date back to 1858 -- which makes them roughly as old as a number of other orders. They were founded by Isaac Hecker, who started out as a Tammany reformer, of all things. They have been consistently involved in Catholic education and in issues of social justice. True, they've been more liberal occasionally than the local Archdiocese would have preferred, and the Jim-Caviezel Died-For-Our-Sins crew doesn't like them very much.

However, they hardly deserve to be described as though they were founded an hour-and-a-half ago in somebody's basement amid crystals and candles and the "Europe '72" album. They preach the Gospels. They officiate the sacraments. They are in good standing with their bishop. The Paulists are as traditional as any other order is -- unless, of course, you equate "traditional" with "theologically reactionary."

I'm sure we'll see corrections on this one by Sunday at the latest. Confession is good for the soul -- right, Mr. Keller?

Do Be-s and Don't Be-s

Which one is Nooners smoking?

Our press corps in those days was more like Americans than our press corps is today. They were both less self-hating and more appropriately anxious: Don't be killing our leaders in the middle of a war, don't be disheartening the people. Win and do the commentary later.

Don't be goin' there! You don't wanta be messin' wit' my bidness! Talk to the loafer!

May I suggest, instead, "don't kill our leaders..." "don't dishearten the people." And don't separate two entirely unrelated concepts with a colon.

So moderately difficult, fact-based questions are "killing our leaders"? Which leaders are those? And are those leaders fit to lead if they can't answer moderately difficult, fact-based questions?

Contrary to Pegaloon, the press corps is not un-American, except to the extent it is more obsequious to Bush than its fellow citizens would wish. The corps was asking questions Americans want answered. Questions which are matters of life and death to many of them. And if Bush can't answer those questions, Americans need to know.

There's a lot more in Nooners' latest tantrum: Dykey female reporters with mustaches, and this unintentional admission: "[The media] could have done some damage to the president with a grave and honest spirit of inquiry." Rating: Three talking dolphins.

Slander For The Common Man

Howie the Putz deigns to speak for the common folk:

But imagine that you're a casual viewer in Kansas City or Orlando or Phoenix. You hear the president talk about Sept. 11, how Saddam was a threat, how battling terrorism is a tough task, how he will do whatever it takes for America to prevail, how he doesn't like seeing dead bodies on television either but his responsibility is to remain resolute. You haven't heard him say this 20 times, like the journalists have. You see a plain-talking president sticking to his guns. You don't think it's reasonable to blame a guy who'd been in office for eight months for 9/11.

And you wonder whether the press is unfairly trying to trap him.

Now imagine that you're a right-wing hack and Bush apologist, who thinks that people in Kansas City, Orlando and Phoenix are morons.

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

You know, when I get readers calling me a -------- and an a-----e in e-mail, I usually have to tell them they want the other Roger.

Good News and Bad News

The good news is that I recently added a Site Meter counter to the site (scroll down to the bottom) and in less than three weeks, I've had over 47,600 visitors to this site. A very sincere thank you to everyone who has visited. I can't adequately express my appreciation to those who read and enjoy (or at least read) these humble efforts.

The bad news is that I just found out that I took a slightly bigger tax hit than I had anticipated (and planned for) this year. So I may be a little pissy for next couple of days.

The good news is: better me than you!

Schmuck Private

Sully Joe opens his essay "The End of Privacy" with these deep thoughts:

It's almost a given in our current culture that privacy doesn't exist any more. No email is safe from being forwarded; websites proclaiming the most intimate of information can be set up and taken down overnight; what was once whispered in coffee klatsches and around water coolers is now on the Web, 24 hours a day.

Oh, to return to those halcyon days of respect for seclusion, when paper correspondence burst into flames if anyone tried to pass it on; when persons never repeated what they were told in confidence; when people stood around the water cooler and gossiped for eight hours, tops. You know, the days when the police could arrest adults for engaging in intercourse in their own beds. Those days.

Of course, the story which is the subject of Sully's article appeared in newsprint as well as on the web, so Sully's condemnation of the web isn't really on point. And does anyone believe the Washington Post Media Group will take the WaPo website down overnight?

This is the same Sully whose obsession with President Clinton's extramarital activities is legendary, who champions his pal Drudge, the originator of the bogus Kerry affair story, and who blogged on the bogus Kerry rumor himself. And his concern for marital privacy wasn't much in evidence when he was blabbing about Posh and Becks last week.

The "End of Irony" is more like it.

May Day

That's Cliff May's story, and he's stickin' to it. Even if it is all crap.

Cliffie still hasn't corrected his bogus history of F.D.R. and the timing of the Pearl Harbor commission investigations. David Corn of The Nation and adds to the debunking of May's fiction, elaborating on points made by Atrios and Eric at Wampum earlier this week. Corn writes:

Fifty-eight years ago, when this country was engaged in World War II, a battle for freedom and security, when American troops were sacrificing their lives for the folks back home, the Republicans had no problem running a candidate against the commander-in-chief, Franklin Roosevelt, nor did the GOP nominee, Thomas Dewey, shrink from criticizing FDR.

He accused FDR of being responsible for the death of American soldiers because Roosevelt had not adequately prepared the country for the war, and he maintained that if FDR was reelected, America would be at risk of a communist takeover. (That sounds overheated now, but it's how Republicans used to campaign against Democrats.) Moreover, Dewey assailed Democrats who argued the debate over the communist threat should be suppressed because it undermined the war effort. (The United States and the Soviet Union were allies at the time.) Dewey claimed the war should not prevent discussion of vital matters.

By questioning the United States-Soviet alliance and FDR's commitment to freedom and liberty while war was raging and the final outcome uncertain, did Dewey and the Republican Party undermine FDR's management of the war? Republicans at the time were spreading gossip that FDR had sent a Navy destroyer to fetch Fala, his Scottish terrier, after the dog supposedly was left behind during a trip to Alaska. Was this attempt to weaken the national standing of a wartime president an action that could have hindered the war? In any event, FDR beat Dewey, 54 to 46 percent. The Republican Party did not believe Dewey had engaged in improper activity, for he went on to win his party's presidential nomination again in 1952 and nearly beat Harry Truman.

To be fair, May did get F.D.R.'s initials correct.

You Can't Be Occupied And Vacant At The Same Time
BUSH: ... And they were happy -- they're not happy they're occupied. I wouldn't be happy if I were occupied either. They do want us there to help with security.

And that's why this transfer of sovereignty is an important signal to send, and it's why it's also important for them to hear we will stand with them until they become a free country.
Fred Kaplan's take on Stonewall Ashcroft's appearance before the 9/11 commission differs from USA Toady's in only one respect. Kaplan actually watched the testimony.

General Stonewall Ashcroft

Contrary to the claims of "Johnny Reb" Ashcroft, the only walls are the Adminstration's stonewalls:

Commission officials also said yesterday that the CIA had granted them access late Monday to the CIA analyst who wrote the Aug. 6 document. Kean and other members said previously that the administration had refused to allow the commission to question the analyst.


Ashcroft also said that one of the first things he did after becoming attorney general was to conduct a "thorough review" of the authorities that the Clinton administration had given the CIA to take covert action against bin Laden. His review showed, he testified, that there was "no covert action program to kill bin Laden."

But several commissioners disagreed. They cited the 1998 "memorandum of notification" signed by Clinton, which was found among the documents that the Bush White House originally refused to turn over to the commission.

Mountains, No Movement

In April and May 2001, for example, the intelligence community headlined some of those reports "Bin Laden planning multiple operations," "Bin Laden network's plans advancing" and "Bin Laden threats are real."

The intelligence included reports of a hostage plot against Americans. It noted that operatives might choose to hijack an aircraft or storm a U.S. embassy. Without knowing when, where or how the terrorists would strike, the CIA "consistently described the upcoming attacks as occurring on a catastrophic level, indicating that they would cause the world to be in turmoil," according to one of two staff reports released by the panel yesterday.

"Reports similar to these were made available to President Bush in the morning meetings with [Director of Central Intelligence George J.] Tenet," the commission staff said.

The information offers the most detailed account to date of the warnings the intelligence community gave top Bush administration officials, and it provides the context in which a CIA briefer put together a memo on Osama bin Laden's activities in the Aug. 6 brief for Bush.

The government moved on several fronts to counter the threats. The CIA launched "disruption operations" in 20 countries. Tenet met or phoned 20 foreign intelligence officials. Units of the 5th Fleet were redeployed. Embassies went on alert. Cheney called Crown Prince Adbullah of Saudi Arabia to ask for help. National security adviser Condoleezza Rice asked the CIA to brief Attorney General John D. Ashcroft about an "imminent" terrorist attack whose location was unknown.

"The system was blinking red," Tenet told the commission in private testimony, the panel's report noted.

In this context, Bush "had occasionally asked his briefers whether any of the threats pointed to the United States," the report said. Or, as one U.S. senior official more intimately involved in the summer reporting paraphrased the president's question to the CIA: "This guy going to strike here?"

A partial answer was contained in the very first sentence of the Aug. 6 President's Daily Brief: "Clandestine, foreign government, and media reports indicate Bin Ladin since 1997 has wanted to conduct terrorist attacks in the US."

So much for "history."

Update: Headlink/link fixed.

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

USA Toady may have gotten rid of Jack Kelley, but it didn't get any better. Here's a headline from today:

Panel maligns FBI, Ashcroft for decisions before 9/11

Here's the definition of malign:

malign To make evil, harmful, and often untrue statements about; speak evil of.

There's not a word or sentence in the article which supports the headline's claim.

Oh, and they're still cleaning up after Kelley.

Monday, April 12, 2004

Someone Offer Mark A Pack Of Smokes And Direct Him To The Self Service Island

Hairless troll doll Mark Levin explains why the PDB was wrong:

"The hijackers did not use explosives."

The smell of desperation is overwhelming.

Working for the Smackdown

Brent "Smackdown" Bozell, the ginger git, is no longer satisfied with dictating the content of the "public airwaves." Now he's demanding that Congress control and manage the content of basic cable. Says Brent:

Cable is now in nearly as many homes as broadcast TV. Most children live in homes with cable TV. We can no longer afford to ignore the rising tide of vulgar and violent programming on cable. How many new frontiers of sleaze, gore and profanity do we have to cross before the cable industry realizes the customer is right?

In his column, Bozell describes a dramatization of a sexual assault in terms more fit for Karl Rove's war room than a family newspaper. He's describing a scene on a basic cable net owned by none other than Rupert Murdoch. But don't hold your breath waiting for Bozo -- or his pals Hannity and O'Reilly -- to name and shame Rupert.

The fact that you have to subscribe to cable doesn't dampen Bozell's desire to regulate. And Bozell doesn't actually want cable companies to "realize the customer is right." He wants Congress to force programmers to offer "family-friendly programming" at a separate rate.

Don't think Bozell will stop with cable television. There are other forums for him to conquer and control.

You're looking at one.

Rebut This

The son of a bat writes:


I know Ramesh and Peter Robinson have both linked to this already but I only got around to reading it this weekend. Gerard Alexander's debunking of the liberal conventional wisdom on GOP racism is really outstanding. It's in the Claremont Review of Books, which has really taken flight in its short time on the scene. Since Alexander's piece has been out for a while, I was wondering if any serious liberals have tried to rebut it? I would love to know what Ruy Teixeira, Peter Beinart or Josh Marshall make of this. If anybody's seen a sincere attempt by folks from that crowd, please send it along.

My rebuttal:

Reply 8 - Posted by: donna quixote, 4/11/2004 6:18:47 PM

If [Muslim Americans] start flexing their power some Americans may do more than a little profiling. It's one thing to be tolerant; it's another to be a patsy.


Reply 9 - Posted by: TeacherNet, 4/11/2004 6:21:53 PM

"Muslim Americans need to come out and present themselves to the Americans.."

They did that already... on 9/11!


Reply 12 - Posted by: Bugg, 4/11/2004 6:32:07 PM


Reply 15 - Posted by: mustng66, 4/11/2004 6:48:59 PM

All it will take is one political ad to show Kerry at a Muslim rally smiling with all the towelheads with a split screen of the twin towers collapsing.

Bush landslide.


Reply 38 - Posted by: arikari, 4/11/2004 10:31:39 PM

Maybe after the next terrorist attack, we can set up internment camps again.

And this:

Reply 20 - Posted by: madkinggoll, 4/12/2004 2:43:28 PM

A Wal-Mart went up near my parents house in Lafayette and promptly drove the locally-owned and much pleasanter Adrian's (whose meatmarket excelled in providing amazingly good (homemade) stuffed and cajun-spiced meats) right out of business. It squats and spralls across what was formerly a lovely bucolic area, completely ruining the landscape. I would love to see that Wal Mart burn. Wal mart may be Mecca for white trash, but it has all the dirt and ethnicity of a 3rd world market w/out any of the charm.


Reply 21 - Posted by: Luke, 4/12/2004 2:49:54 PM

If people that shop at walmarts is called white trash, what do they call Coon-asses that shop there?


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© 2004 Media Inc.

Is that sincere enough for you, bigot boy?

And don't get too comfortable, Jnr. You may be lower down on their list, but you're still on it: "Now, that wouldn't be the baby-killing, Christian-hating Krauthammer and Safire would it?"

(All quotes taken directly from the Mickey Kaus-approved hate site,

Sunday, April 11, 2004

Breaking News

The Moonie Times reports: Homos hate women's breasts:

"Wait a minute, it's the homosexual Fab Five, not the straight guys, who find women's breasts objectionable."
In other news, John McCaslin outs Michael Powell as GAY! GAY! GAY!

John must have confirmed this with Sully before he published it, given the Times' strict sourcing rules.

Meet Your Liberal Media: Dogma and Pony Show Edition

"BOSTON, April 11 -- Rejecting the admonitions of several national Roman Catholic leaders, Senator John Kerry received communion at Easter services today at the Paulist Center here, a kind of New Age church that describes itself as 'a worship community of Christians in the Roman Catholic tradition' and that attracts people drawn to its dedication to 'family religious education and social justice.'"

"Mr. Kerry's decision to receive communion represented a challenge to several prominent Catholic bishops, who have become increasingly exasperated with politicians who are Catholic but who deviate from Catholic teaching.

"Mr. Kerry, the presumed Democratic presidential nominee, supports abortion rights and stem cell research, both of which are contrary to church teaching. He and his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, are regular worshipers at the Paulist Center, which is near their home on Beacon Hill."

A Kit Seeyle classic.

First, the church describes itself as a Christian, Catholic church. Why then did Seeyle describe it as a "kind of New Age church"?

And why didn't Seeyle address the instances where Kerry's positions are more in line with those of the Roman Catholic Church than those of his opponent, on such issues as the death penalty and the war against Iraq? (For that matter, why doesn't Seelye report on how the excommunications of Tom Ridge, Rick Santorum and Fat Tony Scalia are progressing?)

These questions are, of course, rhetorical. Seelye is intent on portraying Kerry as a Bad Catholic and a Bad Christian. And equally intent on misleading her readers.

The real question is why the New York Times allows this kind of crap in its news pages.

Update: Right after posting this, I traveled to Talk Left, who links to new blogger Cat M. at My Left Brain. Cat discusses the Bad Catholic issue in more and better detail. Her post also reminds us that we're still waiting for the mainstream media to publish anything on the ties between Bush and the man who is, according to the established teachings of every Christian church, a false god: Sun Myung Moon.

Back On The Horse

This is a few days old, but it's great news. According to David Neiwert at Orcinus, Media Whores Online is only temporarily on hiatus, and may return as soon as May. David says that "MWO hopes to return before the election, bigger and badder than ever, weighing in when it counts most."

And on that glorious day, there will be much wailing and gnashing of teeth amongst the media whores.


The problem with the Administration is that it believes its own myths.

Today, Bush, comparing himself favorably to Hercules, claimed he would have "moved mountains" if he had been given specific intelligence of an attack on New York or Washington D.C.

Unfortunately, there weren't any mountains within driving distance of Crawford, Texas. Too bad.

And, last week, National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, the Administration's self-appointed Atlas, testified that "we would have moved heaven and earth" to prevent attacks on America. If only someone had ordered her to do it.

A little less heroic posturing and a lot more practical thinking might have been helpful.

It's time to clean out the Augean Stables.

Bill Bennett Volunteers for Military Service in Iraq

Did I read that right?

Neither Accurate Nor Truthful

Meanwhile, The Corner leaves it to Jim Robbins to put up the best defense of the Bush Administration in light of the August 2001 PDB. In full:

A CNN headline on the August 6, 2001 PDB reads "Key Document Warned of Possible al Qaeda Scenarios." But none of the scenarios were the actual plan. One dealt with AQ attacking us with explosives, another with hijacking planes to engage in hostage negotiations. Another said the window of AQ attack was early 1997 to early 2001, which had already passed by August. Yet the press still treats this page and a half document breathlessly. How very sad they think that their audience cannot read or reason for themselves. What contempt they must have for us.

Hmm... Jim doesn't link to the "Key Document."

And the words "early 2001" and "window" are nowhere in the document, nor is an early 2001 window closing suggested by the briefing. In fact, just the opposite.

How very sad they think that their audience cannot read or reason for themselves. What contempt they must have for them.