Archive for May 24th, 2006

Joe R visited my post on the sleazy personal lives of famous Republican lawmakers and upbraided me for ignoring our Governor's trip to Iraq, which apparently he saw as a grandstanding maneuver while the state was going to h*ll.

His shrill histrionics were amusing. Schweitzer is, if anything, competent and well-liked, and he – along with the Democratic state legislature – seemed to have pulled the state's finances together. I'm not a blind supporter of the Governor, nor disillusioned as to his acerbic personality, but he's by far a better Governor than the last two we've had. And he'd certainly be more capable as President than the joker that sits like a lump in the Oval Office today.

Still, Joe R may be right: Schweitzer's trip to Iraq may have been a publicity stunt for his run as…President?…Vice President?…Secretary of the Interior? And that he accompanied one of the front runners for the Republican Presidential bid, Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, seems to confirm this.

But I ask, what's the problem with that? He went to Iraq to visit the troops, and it's ironic that Joe R, who very likely has a yellow ribbon stuck to the back of his pickup, thinks that Montana troops don't need their commander-in-chief's support. Schweitzer has at least seen where his troops serve.

Did this guy make the same complaint when Conrad Burns went to Iraq? I’m sure Burns did good business with the Iraqi lobbyists — I mean, I’m sure Montana’s troops were overjoyed to see their Senator

Incidentally, these trips make both Schweitzer and Burns more knowledgeable on Iraq than the Secretary of Defense.

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I don’t know about you, but I’m beginning to go numb with the revelations coming in about the Bush administration’s spying schemes. Who are they spying on? Everybody. How are they doing it? You name it.

Tom Tomorrow nailed it in a May 16 strip.

First it was the revelation of the unauthorized overseas phone calls. But only for suspected terrorists, of course! And then it was data mining of all domestic phone calls. Billions of ‘em. But no one’s actually listening to the calls!

Hersch (who’s always right):

Instead [of getting approval from FISA], the N.S.A. began, in some cases, to eavesdrop on callers (often using computers to listen for key words) or to investigate them using traditional police methods. A government consultant told me that tens of thousands of Americans had had their calls monitored in one way or the other. “In the old days, you needed probable cause to listen in,” the consultant explained. “But you could not listen in to generate probable cause. What they’re doing is a violation of the spirit of the law.” One C.I.A. officer told me that the Administration, by not approaching the FISA court early on, had made it much harder to go to the court later.

No response to this revelation, no “mainstream” organization broke the story. (See, this will break after the midterms and it’ll “surprise” everyone.)

Of course the Internet is being monitored, as is all your commercial records. They do have all your tax returns, your SSN, and your birth records. What’s next, medical records?

Does anyone reading this believe the Bush administration is spying only on perceived terrorists? Or do you think they’re spying on…well…whoever they want? Democrats, anti-war activists, and reporters?

In an earlier post, I noted that the only people who can put an end to Bush’s aggressive seize of power are GOP Congressmen. Did I think the Republic had much chance?

That’s right. The only thing standing between us and the endangered republic is a pack of spineless, corrupt weasels who have done nothing to protect their own body’s power, their own electorate, their own country from George W. Bush.

Well…it turns out that these spineless miscreants did recently exhibit some spine against unwanted intrusions! No, no, not in denying Hayden confirmation as new head of the CIA – which they did, quite meekly — no, our gallant Congressmen have taken arms against the FBI search of the office of Representative William Jefferson (a Democrat, nonetheless) — a crook and a scumbag.

These are the interests of the legislative branch they want to protect?

Bush nullifies 750 laws they've passed, and [House majority leader, Republican Richard] Boehner wants to protect them from FBI corruption investigations?

Indeed. It’s almost as if the Congressional Republicans have willfully turned over their power to the administration in exchange for their perks, and now that their goodies are threatened….outrage! Imagine, too, if the FBI ran amok among Congressional offices! Think of the things they’d find!

Poor Boss Hogg Burns might have to turn over his Ronco Showtime Professional Rotisserie & BBQ Oven Jack got him as a farewell gift.

I’m just glad they’re in Washington watching out for the rule of law!

Links…

Uh oh. Morocco downs the US in a pre-World Cup “friendly.” Um. And we’re going against the world’s second-ranked team in the first game? Of course the US squad is ranked fifth, which tells you something about the ranking process.

It appears the Iranian Badge Story was planted by neo-cons to whip us up in an anti-Iranian frenzy. These guys are still pursuing their nutjob agenda even after its dismal failure in Iraq!

The Intelligence Czar can now help fight terrorism by exempting businesses from SEC rules! Allowing businesses to…um…to…um…insider trade al Qaeda into nonexistence? To…er…falsify the earnings out of bin Laden? Something tells me Halliburton’s getting some exemptions.

Orcinus has a thought-provoking post up about the pseudo-fascist fundamentalist youth rally, “Battle Cry.” These people are nuts.

The latest Tester endorsements.

Speaking of writing pieces about politicians’ families…it appears there’s a rift in the First Couple’s relationship – over gay marriage. I think Dinky better suck up to Laura. After all, she has the highest approval ratings in the administration and is its best fund raiser. (That’s not a joke, friends.)

Review of former ex-Nixon official, Kevin Phillips’ “American Theocracy: The Peril and Politics of Radical Religion, Oil, and Borrowed Money in the 21st Century.” The shorter version: Bush sucks.

Wired on Superman.

Is it too late for a virginity pledge locket? Well, then, hook up with a “Pilgrim’s Badge”! (Not safe for work?)

I saved the best sleaze-news for today, which should once and for all determine which political party is superior. I don’t mean politically or philosophically, of course. I mean style-wise.

You’ve got two Presidents. Each of whom has a brother. The first brother was Attorney General for his brother and a front-running Presidential candidate before his assassination. The other is a Governor of a powerful state and a possible Presidential candidate.

      

Both brothers and their families had plenty of personal problems. The Attorney General’s younger brother killed a girl in a drunk driving incident. The Governor’s brother was an alcoholic and drug-user and his daughter is a cocaine addict.

Both are known philanderers.

The Attorney General’s girl was hot:

The rumored former mistress of the Governor?:

’Nuff said.




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