Archive for the ‘Links’ Category

By CFS

Since the Republicans showed their true communist colors and adopted the slogan “from each according to his ability, to each according to his need,” with the passage of SB 423 ridding the fledgling medical marijuana industry of the profit motive patients will inevitably suffer and the black market will invariably fill the void left by the current caregiver system.

I wonder what the Republicans think all these MMJ growers will do once they become outlawed… Sell their equipment on craigslist? More likely, these growers that have sunk thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands, of dollars into their business will continue to grow for the black market where they can actually make money… Tax free at that. These people are small business entrepreneurs after all, and they just need government to get out of their way.

Anyway, there is a great Slate feature that I suggest anyone interested in this issues should read. The article is written by a woman whose son suffers from a severe form of autism and the only thing that she has found that helps her child is marijuana. There are four parts to the series spanning a two year period of her family’s struggle with the disorder and how, through the use of medical marijuana, they have been able to live a more normal and happy life.

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by Pete Talbot

(The above headline is to be sung to the tune of “These Are a Few of My Favorite Things” from the Sound of Music.)

I love it when someone actually researches the claims from the right that global warming isn’t happening. Dick Barrett shreds a recent global warming denier’s guest column.

Shane takes up the nuclear energy debate and also has a poll. The poll’s results don’t seem to match the comments. Maybe the nuclear industry lobby folks are also linking to Montana Netroots, and voting but not leaving their opinions.

Also over at NetRoots, Cece is pissed. Apparently, the backers of I-159 have removed the initiative from the ballot for some future political favors. I’m not sure how that works but I wasn’t even aware of the petition drive until just last week when someone thrust a clipboard in front of me at Rockin Rudy’s and asked me to sign.

Jay reviews the Montana Republican convention and I agree, Erik Iverson is one hell of a spin doctor. One of my favorite quotes was, “Our diversity in the Montana Republican Party is our strength.” It came from a Missoulian State Bureau story that was headlined, “Diversity, unity the themes at GOP convention.” Now when I think of diversity, I think about people of color, or gays and lesbians. I don’t think about a bunch of white folks that are right wing and far-right wing.

Another nugget from the convention that goes to the heart of Republican diversity was this. It’s a new plank in the party platform that advocates rounding up all the illegal immigrants in the U.S. and shipping them back to whence they came. First of all — good luck. Second of all — where does the budget for this round up come from? And finally, a few Republican critics of the plank said it sends the wrong message. You think?

Finally, most everybody thinks that 18 gubernatorial debates are overkill. While Jay thinks three is plenty, Lamnidae thinks that 174 is a good number (but I think he’s being facetious).  My belief is that one should suffice.  By the way, excuse my ignorance, but just what is a lamnidae?

by Rebecca Schmitz

It’s election day here in Missoula, so if you haven’t returned your ballot yet be sure to head down to the Elections Office in the county courthouse by 5pm 8pm (thanks, Jason!) today. Ward Two candidate Pam Walzer helpfully provided this voting advice for everyone in a comment on this site last week:

If you’re not able to get your ballot in the mail in time, not to worry – you can drop it off at the Elections Office any time during normal business hours and until 8 pm on Tuesday, Nov. 6th. OR – only on “Election Day,” Nov. 6th (7am-8pm)- you can drop your ballot off at any of the following 5 schools: Cold Springs, Hellgate Elementary, Paxson, Rattlesnake, or Russell.

In other words, it’s not over yet people! You still have time to make your voice heard, no matter which City Council candidate you support. We have our favorites, as you know, and we have a definite opinion on the Iraq War referendum.

Speaking of that pesky little misadventure in Iraq, Dennis Kucinich says he’s introducing a resolution in the House of Representatives today to force the introduction of Articles of Impeachment against one of its architects, Vice President Dick Cheney. He was supposed to have a nationwide discussion about his resolution last night, but apparently there was a glitch in the phone lines:

The Kucinich campaign apologized for the snafu, explaining that staff had significantly underestimated the number of call-ins, and public interest in the issue exceeded technological capacity. The call will be re-scheduled within the next few days.

I expect the resolution to fail miserably, not because it’s the wrong thing to do, but because Kucinich’s fellow Democrats can barely take a stand against torture, let alone remove one of the worst public officials in American history from office.

You could dismiss Representative Kucinich’s resolution as merely an election season publicity stunt, but at least he’s not trying to keep anyone off the ballot, like some Democratic party officials in South Carolina. In case you hadn’t heard, comedian Stephen Colbert wanted to run for President–in his home state alone. However, his bid was thwarted last week.

The South Carolina Democratic Party Executive Council voted last week 13-3 to block Colbert’s bid for the Democratic primary.

According to the Seattle Times this morning, his campaign is over. That’s a shame. If the Republicans can let that theocrat-in-Libertarian-clothing Ron Paul play in their sandbox, why won’t we do the same for one of the best and smartest entertainers in America today?

Links…

CQ’s Matthew Spieler praises “Red State Dems,” including Jon Tester.

USA Today: “Senators who weakened drug bill got millions from industry”; with graphic that includes a certain Montana Senator.

Matt Singer sees in Lange’s sacking the result of his compromise with the Good Guv. That is, the MT GOP wants to be more combative and obstructionist…

Jeff Mangan pitches in his two cents on the end of the special session…

The AP is reporting that the Governor’s “square deal” made it nearly intact through the Montana legislature.

Singer examines the “Give it Back” website and its backer, Steve Daines, and thinks something fishy is going on. I have to agree: why would someone start this movement now, when it was too late? Seems to be an anti-Schweitzer political ad, if you ask me…

jhwygirl is a little appalled at all the recent nutso crime in Missoula.

Steve Benen: “On the one hand, they hate frivolous lawsuits. On the other hand, they hate gay people. What’s a conservative movement to do?”

Wolfowitz: “It’s my girlfriend’s fault.” Classy. Let’s hope he loses his job and his girlfriend.

Gonzalez: “It’s McNulty’s fault.” Classy. Let’s hope he loses his job and…and…his dignity? Already gone.

Democrats are falling down on lobbying reform. Remember why we voted for you, you c*cksuckers!

Republicans are gloomy about the state of the party, blame Bush.

Fox News mixes up race and voter fraud, apparently scaring up support for Republicans’ phony voter fraud claims.

Fred Thompson passes muster with secret right-wing foreign policy group, the Council for National Policy.

Newt edging towards a presidential bid? Oh man, I hope so.

So…both the Iraqi parliament and the US Congress want us to withdraw from Iraq. Mitch McConnell: “…if they vote to ask us to leave, we’ll be glad to comply with their request.” Colby wants to know why the Iraqis’ vote is more important than Congress’.

An update on the state of the Feingold-Reid bill to cut off funding for Iraq. Presidential campaign politics enter the mix…

Josh Marshall on the death of US soldiers in Iraq: “…the service and sacrifice wash the death clean of the folly of the leaders who ordered them into battle.”

Leave it to the Bush administration to make John Ashcroft look like a paragon of restraint and a man more committed to his country than his pet ideologies.

Oops. MSNBC quotes a satire site on Jerry Falwell. I guess they should reconsider outsourcing their producing to India…

Ed Kemmick realizes his corporate overlords think an Indian bus-boy could do his job, sweats.

Jon Stewart on “ongoing investigations.”

Colbert pays homage to Tony Blair.

Links…

Missoula Rep. Kevin Furey’s being called to active duty. The Missoula County Democrats selected his father, Tim Furey, to sit in for him during the Legislature’s special session. Good luck to both father and son, and our wishes for Rep. Furey’s safety.

The Guv’s budget man, David Ewer, gives us a peek at some of the tax and budget legislation you can expect to see this weekend.

Sen. Jim Elliot (D-Trout Creek) and Rep. Gordon Hendrick (R-Superior) seek to explain to the The Clark Fork Chronicle and the Frenchtown School Board the reason for the Legislature’s gridlock.

Jon Tester profiled in Men’s Journal: “Montana’s Organic Farmer.”

Baucus: Hedge fund tax bill “nowhere in sight.” He’s not so wishy-washy on banning the AMT, though. Ugh.

You know why I won’t be supporting Hilary Clinton? Meet Mark Penn.

A reminder of why you pulled the little blue lever: House Democrats are proposing the restoration of habeas corpus. The New York Times: “There is nothing “conservative” or “tough on terrorism” in selectively stripping people of their rights. Suspending habeas corpus is an extreme notion on the radical fringes of democratic philosophy.”

Kossak Kagro X isn’t sure if the tendency of Congressional Republicans to use their wives as fronts for their corrupt operations is a sign of feminist progress, or simply traditional exploitation of women…

The ninth fired US attorney. (Steve Benen’s take.)

All right! This is more like it! Charges may result from attorney firings. Let’s hold these *sshats accountible.

Don’t eat pork. Or chicken. Or fish. Thanks, you “loyal Bushies,” for giving the treatment to the FDA.

Let’s see…Chevron gave Saddam Hussein illegal kickbacks in the infamous oil-for-food scam…and Condi Rice was on the board of directors at the time…

Let’s see…the administration wants to nominate Dell Dailey to the State Department post that’s responsible for coordinating international efforts to combat terror…only he was in charge of our country’s rendition program…a kidnapper…seems to me this is a no-brainer thumbs-down vote for the Senate.

Let’s see…Iraqi’s parliament signed a petition demanding US withdrawal from their country…um…why, exactly, are we there?

Let’s see…a former US military commander urges Congress to “act now to protect our fighting men and women” from the President’s failed strategy…so, um, why can’t we get enough votes to override Bush’s veto?

Michael Erickson managed to acquire an early copy of the schedule for the 2008 Democratic National Convention

Ed Kemmick touts the Butte Press Club meeting this weekend. All are invited to attend. I admit I’m tempted, but it’s hard to jet out of town for a weekend when there are toddlers around…

Links…

Tester kills liquid coal bill. Is he splitting off from the Good Guv over coal-to-gas? Let’s hope so, because that scheme ain’t got legs, IMHO, tho’ Eastern Montana is getting goose bumps just thinking about it.

The Senate kills a bill that would allow consumers to buy prescription drugs from Canada. So much for “free trade.” Baucus was among those that took this legislation down.

Montana legislative special session to convene on Thursday. Jeff Mangan is surprised at the timing and length of the session, the Good Guv’s optimism, and wants to know what the Governor knows, and when he knew it.

Ed Kemmick has a modest proposal on how to lubricate legislative relations.

Sarpy Sam doles out the blame for the infusion of contaminated wheat gluten into our food supply. Warning: you do not escape his critical eye.

Canada has better health care than the US. Oh yeah, it costs half as much.

In an effort to create its own politically-biased video web site – QubeTV – Nicole Belle sees a pattern in which the conservative movement seeks to create its own “reality.” Kind of cult-like, if you ask me.

Obama tells Detroit car manufacturers they need to start implementing better fuel efficiency.

Dave Neiwert kicks in his two cents on the racism – subtle and otherwise – surrounding Obama’s entry into presidential politics.

Jon Stewart on the first Republican presidential debate.

It’s one thing for Giuliani to flip flop on abortion, but it’s another altogether to have made donations to pro-life bugbear, Planned Parenthood. IMHO, Giuliani’s stance on abortion is the only reasonable thing about him. And it’s what will sink his candidacy for the GOP nomination.

Pogie’s found his 2008 presidential candidate: Eugene V Debs.

Kevin Drum points out some of the ideological absurdity that created the 2003 Medicare prescription bill. Say! Wasn’t Baucus a key player in this?

Shane points out that SCOTUS nominations matter, and lists the folks who both voted to end the filibuster, and for Alito. Say! Didn’t Baucus vote for cloture on the Alito nomination?

Aftermath of Kansas tornado hampered by missing equipment deployed to Iraq.

Robert Gates has a mind of his own when it comes to Iraq. That’s sad that things have gotten so bad most of us are relieved that we have a rogue Defense Secretary.

Republican legislators, too, and getting nervous and considering timelines. Shane’s take.

The case for endless war, debunked.

LA Times: “Bring them home.”

A primer of the DoJ hiring practices, starring Goofus and Gallant.

Dept. of irony: DoJ Civil Rights division appears to have discriminated against African-Americans in its hirings…

John Doolittle accuses the DoJ of searching his home to take the heat off of Alberto Gonzalez. (A nice profile of Doolittle here…)

Former White House staffer confirms impression that the administration is isolated from reality.

Bush at all-time low in polls, and is dragging all of the GOP presidential hopefuls with him.

Iconic Republicans are turning into Democrats, thanks to Bush et al. Welcome aboard, you Eisenhowers, (Teddy) Roosevelts, and Goldwaters!

Miliblogs praised by Big Sky Blog’s David.

Bloggers are a bunch of young punks…not!

Links…

by Jay Stevens

The Good Guv fishes for a Republican he can cut a deal with…

Matt Singer *gasp* praises Dennis Rehberg for protecting a constituent’s privacy

Missoula Senator Greg Lind ensured that more young people would be insured.

David Sirota finds class warfare waged in a working-class town in the recent economic conference; Ed Kemmick implores Schweitzer to negotiate, and Sirota to STFU; Matt Singer responds.

The Missoula town council mulls its sidewalks.

Larry LaRocco announced his candidacy for Idaho’s disputed Senate seat.

Olivier Roy argues that Islamic radicalism is more accurately a result of the westernization of Islam, not an organic, Islamic-born radicalism.

Apparently the Vatican, like bedwetters, see nothing but terror in basic liberty.

The quagmire of current affairs we find ourselves in has “…all hallmarks of a pathological masculinity that confuses diplomacy with weakness and arrogant rigidity with strength. It is founded not on a self-assured sense of what it is but on a neurotic loathing of what it secretly fears it may be: wussy. And it will go to the grave insisting on battering-ram stiffness (stay the course! don’t pull out!) as the truest mark of manhood.”

Congressional Republicans oppose hate crimes bill because it doesn’t include seniors and military personnel. Er. Not really. Too bad they just can’t come out and say they don’t think gays should be protected by hate crime legislation.

Jon Stewart on the DC madam scandal.

Grover Norquist on DC madam’s list?

The winner of the first Republican primary debate: Ronald Reagan.

Ron Paul was spot on when he said that the rush to war in Iraq went against all traditional conservative foreign policy values. Too bad we don’t have many principled conservatives in the federal government. We sure could have used one a couple years ago.

Shane likes Senator Clinton’s plan to deauthorize the war in Iraq. I agree. Would the deauthorization be subject to a veto?

A Washington prosecutor claims US attorney John McKay was fired by the DoJ because he wanted to concentrate his resources, not on bogus voter fraud cases, but on investigating the murder of assistant US attorney, Tom Wales. Why would the loyal Bushies take offense at that? Because Wales was in favor of gun control.

Did Karl Rove coach DoJ testifiers to mislead Congress? It sure looks that way.

Condi Rice’s office keeps “dodging” Henry Waxman. Does she think he’ll give up?

Does Bush’s threat to veto any legislation that “allow[s] taxpayer dollars to be used for the destruction of human life,” mean that he’s going to cut off funding for the Iraq War? Seriously, though, it’s telling that clumps of fetal tissue evoke more compassion from Bush than Iraqi civilians or US troops.

Eugene Robinson: “Is George W. Bush even trying to make sense anymore?”

It’s true! George Bush is the CEO President. And I don’t mean that in a good way.

Jon Stewart: Don’t call them “timetables,” call them “glory goals.”

Colbert on rendition: “We pay the price for having to torture innocent people. It feels terrible!”

Nicole’s butt rash song is a finalist in Look Daddy’s song lyric competition! Go vote for her! (But whatever you do, do not sing “Joe-Ray-Lee,” or you, too, will be compelled to vote for it.)

Bring civility to your blog posts!

Links…

Max Baucus “unlikely” to implement earmark disclosure on his committee’s bills. “That means that the Senate’s defense authorization, water resources and appropriations bills are expected to reveal earmark sponsors, while targeted tax and tariff breaks will stay veiled for now.”

Matt Singer examines Bill Mercer’s two jobs

Ed Kemmick gets to the heart of the legislature’s dispute over stream access.

Dave Neiwert comments on Mike Lange’s civility.

Sirota hassles the capitalists in Butte.

Arctic sea ice melting faster than predicted. Climate change deniers accuse North Pole of having a liberal bias.

The Sierra Club convenes a “climate brain trust” comprising experts from across the ideology spectrum to offer solutions to global warming.

What do conspiracy theorist cranks and the SCOTUS have in common on the issue of abortion? Digby: Neither will allow a woman to make “a decision she might later regret.” Next stop: women who have abortions are a danger to society.

Steve T links to Glenn Greenwald’s poignant post on the Israeli commission report that indicts Israeli leadership for bungling – and even for pursuing — its recent attack of Lebanon. Steve highlights the post to show how far removed militant Israel backers are from Israel itself in an obvious jab at a local blogger. I like the post because it shows an appropriate response of a functioning democracy to a failed war policy. (Jon Stewart’s take.)

Glenn Greenwald reacts to a Wall Street Journal op-ed calling for a “strong executive”: “The point here is not to spend much time arguing that Mansfield’s authoritarian cravings are repugnant to our political traditions. The real point is that Mansfield’s mindset is the mindset of the Bush movement, of the right-wing extremists who have taken over the Republican Party and governed our country completely outside of the rule of law for the last six years.”

House to look into voting machine glitches in 2006 FL-13 race.

When citizen activists bang up against political machines: Obama muscles into My Space.

jhwygirl is trying to get John Edwards to make an appearance in Missoula. I’d be into that! Edwards is right now my favorite of the Democratic candidates…

Mitt Romney just can’t win.

Wow. A National Review columnist suggested the only thing that might “save this country” from “degeneracy” is a military coup. Seriously folks, when the majority of Americans find your ideology abhorrent and useless, the answer is not forcefully imposing that ideology on us. Going away for a long rest is a better idea.

The fruit of politicizing the nation’s civil service: Interior Department official resigns for “altering scientific conclusions” and providing internal documents to lobbyists.

The Bush administration appoints a “food safety czar” to plug the holes in the administration-crippled FDA, just one Czar in a long string of Bush-appointed Czars. Weird, isn’t it? It’s like a team of little strong-arm bureaucratic dictators, as if the Bushies think a dictator is the most efficient way to get things done.

Plenty of prosecutor purge news today! Goodling’s in trouble for “screening attorneys for party affiliation”; a DoJ official tried to “bully fired prosecutors into silence”; the Senate Judiciary Committee wants Rove’s emails; no one knows who decided to fire the attorneys in dispute; Mercer’s in hot water; Timothy Griffin admitted the White House purposefully exploited the Patriot Act to install him as attorney without Senate approval; Lam testifies a DoJ official said she “would be gone” no matter what changes she made in the handling of cases, and the order came from the “highest levels of government”…

If Gonzo won’t resign, we should impeach him, says Frank Bowman.

The Pentagon cracks down military blogs.

Just after the announcement, Bush praises the military blogs, praises their effectiveness in allowing family members to communicate with soldiers overseas.

The Bush administration informs Congress it’s going ahead with warrantless wiretapping, laws be d*mned.

The White House launches its own investigation into the guy that exposed rampant fraud and waste among contractors in Iraq. This wouldn’t be politically motivated – like everything else the loyal Bushies do?

Russ Feingold on Bush vetoing the Iraqi funding bill: “No one else should die in Iraq to give political comfort to dealmakers in Washington.”

Meanwhile political lines shift in DC after the President’s veto of the Iraqi funding bill. Democrats regroup; Republicans drift away from their president.

Sidney Blumenthal traces Bush’s love for cowboy kitsch to torture at Abu Ghraib.

Bush: “I’m the commander guy.”

Nation’s liberals suffer from outrage fatigue.

Links…

Montana Headlines is right: he and I could hammer out a compromise on tax refunds…just give us a quiet room, a pizza, and two hours. Makes you wonder why the Legislature can’t…

Matt Singer apportions the biggest burden of blame for the Legislature’s failure to Scott Sales. I can’t say I disagree: he did start the session off with inflammatory rhetoric and then appointed a right-wing extremist to the chair of one of the most important legislative committees. He poisoned the soup before they sat down for dinner.

Montana Legislature: what could have been.

New West reports on what the Legislature actually did.

The Good Guv refuses to name a date for the legislative special session.

Senate President Mike Cooney suggests legislative leaders should meet in Billings and hash things out, on their own dime. An excellent idea.

With all of the recent Republican mishaps – including Iraq – Matt Singer mulls the future of the state GOP.

Sarpy Sam is irked by the Legislature’s inability to agree on a budget. While some of the right’s most ardent supporters deny it, you legislators represent us all. Git ‘er done, people.

Ed Kemmick has a few thoughts dislodged by Billings’ panhandling ordinance and the online commenters’ reaction to it…

You know your Representative is out there if his beliefs are indistinguishable from satire: Jesus General has embraced Idaho’s Bill Sali as a kindred spirit. (Hat tip Sara.)

Julie Fanselow tracks Sali’s voting record and wishes he were merely satire. Luckily Sali is the least powerful member of Congress.

Sara Anderson – on a recent blogging tear – mulls the media’s depiction of women interested in the issue of abortion.

Half the world’s species may be extinct at century’s end, and what may follow…

Montana Liberty Project touts geothermal energy.

Shane applauds the recent SCOTUS decision on patents.

Obama takes the lead in the Democratic presidential race. Colby mulls the results.

A fifth of the Gitmo detainees are “free,” but have to stay for “months or possibly years” because of administration incompetence.

David Broder: Karl Rove’s quail-eating buddy.

Federal contractors owe over $7 billion in unpaid taxes.

Prosecutor purge links, including news of a secret memo empowering Goodling, Sampson to have final say over fires and hires.

Ex-CIA official claims he has evidence that the Vice President’s office forged the uranium-from-Niger letter.

Reagan’s former NSA advisor, General Odom, urges Bush not to veto Congress’ Iraqi funding bill.

Now even diehard Bush supporters are shying away from the President, seeing a “bunker mentality” in the man. Not good news for the country.

George Will, William Buckley worry that the Bush presidency has irreparably harmed the GOP. Will: “This could be a foreign policy equivalent of the Depression…”

The Bush presidency has created a “toxic climate” for GOP candidates, affecting fundraising and candidate recruitment. Looks like maybe impeachment could be a reality if this keeps up, eh?

Independent citizens are becoming the watchdogs of government. Yes, MT legislators, we’ll be checking out who’s funding you.

Links…

Attention DCer, a group of renegade Montanans is going to host their very own testicle festival in our nation’s capitol!

Montana’s Chief Justice of the state supreme court, Karla Gray, announces she will not seek re-election. Jeff Mangan pays homage to the retiring public servant.

Mike McGrath announces he’s a candidate for Montana’s now vacant Chief Justice seat.

Montana Senate, House adjourn without a state budget. Looks like we’re headed for a special session.

Gazette: “Legislature in tatters following angry tirade at Governor.”

David Sirota boils down the gridlock in Helena to one issue: taxes. Or more specifically, should tax relief go to average Montanans, or big money out-of-state interests?

Meanwhile Republicans may just revive HB 2, strip out some provisions, and vote on that. Thanks for wasting our time.

Nicole is irked that the House Republicans are using 5-year-olds as pawns in their political posturing.

The Notorious Mark T mulls the psychology behind The Obscene Rant and its apologists.

Matt urges us to read John Adams’ piece on Helena lobbyist, Jerome Anderson.

Matthew Koehler on why the Missoulian is misleading its readers on forestry and public lands issues.

Mark T prophesizes on a possible future under the overturning of Roe v. Wade.

Let’s face it, Bill Moyers’ PBS show on the failure of the media before the Iraq War was neither long, nor new. Still, he’s got some great interviews with the biggest losers in the media’s pre-Iraq failure, and ties everything together neatly.

Glenn Greenwald calls the documentary a “valuable historical account,” and maintains – quite correctly, IMHO – that not much has changed in the national media since then.

On the other hand, Moyers’ segment scared a lot of journalists. Like Bill O’Reilly. So that’s good.

Mark Knoller defends the White Press Corps from Moyer’s accusation that they rolled over in an March 6, 2003, Presidential press conference. Atrios posts the questions. Knoller = idiot.

In the show, Moyer referred to an Oprah segment on Iraq in 2002, in which she talked with Judith Miller and Kenneth Pollack. Why doesn’t she invite them back and give them the James Frey treatment?

So Moyer succinctly showed what happened to those journalists who played cheerleader for the administration – nothing – but what he didn’t tell you, was what happened to those who spoke out against the Iraq policy.

Jane Hamsher roasts Tim Russert; John Amato, Bill Kristol; and digby trashes all the rich, journalist celebrities with their Nantucket summer homes pretending they’re poor, hard-working middle-class joes.

Jon Stewart: who’s to blame for the Virginia Tech shooter?

About, oh, a day after David Broder trashed Harry Reid and claimed Senate Democrats wanted to oust him as majority leader, the entire Senate Democratic Caucus (yes, including Joe) wrote the Post to unanimously support their leader. So does Broder just make up what he writes?

Ex-rep JD Hayworth (R-AZ) under scrutiny for Abramoff dealings. (Ol’ Connie got a mention in the article, too.)

Shane reviews the first Democratic presidential debate.

Guess who Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney is referring to in this quote? “It’s not worth moving heaven and earth spending billions of dollars just trying to catch one person.”

Another good government bureaucracy – the Center for Disease Control – getting the Bush treatment.

Condi Rice “not inclined” to respond to Congressional subpoena, which is, well, against the law. Only thing is, it’d be the Attorney General’s responsibility to bring her in.

Jon Stewart on Alberto Gonzalez’ testimony.

Former CIA Director George Tenet slams the administration for misusing his “slam dunk” comment…a couple of years too late.

President Bush “hopes someone is held responsible” for the mishandling of Pat Tillman’s death. Yeah, me too. Thank goodness for Henry Waxman.

The House and Senate vote to fund the troops, and set a timetable for withdrawal.

Coincidentally, the Pentagon announced the capture of a top al Qaeda operative…er…more than a year ago

Tell us the mission.

The Library of Congress gets a blog!

Wired: “How the CIA Used a Fake Sci-Fi Flick to Rescue Americans from Tehran.”

The New York Times undercuts Nicole’s efforts on behalf of Bozeman architecture.

I love the Internet. Really.

Links…

David Halberstam died yesterday. Like John, I grew up reading his sports nonfiction. In my case, it was “The Summer of ’49,” which helped shape my Red Sox angst.

Colleague Evan Thomas recounts Halberstam’s Vietnam reporting.

Kemmick excoriates Max Baucus for his co-fundraising account with House Ways and Means Committee chair, Charles Rangel.

Sirota, as one might expect, has some even harsher words for Max.

Fox News says Conrad Burns is busy making lemonade: “’Lobbyists don’t care (about lawmakers’ past baggage) unless they are convicted,’ said Larry Sabato, head of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia.”

Mike Lange apparently becomes unhinged during a recent Republican caucus and says stuff too salty for this family-oriented blog. (Matt’s take. Jeff Mangan’s take.)

Legislature approves of initiative reform, including a ban on nonresident signature gatherers, paying signature gatherers by the signature, and establishing a judicial fast track for legal challenges to initiatives. Good stuff…although the ban on nonresidents may be unconstitutional.

There is a Green Party in Montana?

The Postal Service targets small magazines with higher rates, while giving big corporate mags the cheap rates. This must be what it’s like to live in a “stakeholder society.”

It’s not just that Tom Delay sounds like an *sshat bedwetter when he accuses Harry Reid of treason, he’s also hypocritical

…just like Senator Jon Kyl’s decrying of setting Congressional timetables for withdrawal from Iraq: …it is “the first time I know of — in the middle of a war — that a country just announces that on a specific date it’s walking off the battlefield.” Hm. Let’s see. Don’t forget, oh, 1998 and 2000, when you voted to set timetables for withdrawing troops from the Balkans…

Rep. Rick Renzi (R-AZ) resigns committee seats after his ex-aide pleads guilty to Abramoff-related corruption charges. (Interestingly enough, this budding scandal has ties to the prosecutor purge.)

Former aide to Rep. Don Young (R-AK) set to plead guilty to Abramoff-related corruption charges.

The FBI makes inquiries into Rep. Tom Freeny’s (R-FL) trips to Scotland on Abramoff’s dime.

The FBI is investigating Rep. Gary Miller (R-CA) about shady land deals.

What’s with the sudden onset of Republican corruption news? Josh Marshall suggests it’s a result of the investigation into the DoJ. That is, the political roadblocks have been removed. (Hm. Is there a certain former Senator whose time is coming?)

Giuliani: America will be less safe under a Democratic presidency. Obama: “Rudy Giuliani today has taken the politics of fear to a new low and I believe Americans are ready to reject those kind of politics….The threat we face is real, and deserves better than to be the punchline of another political attack.”

Did the retirement of US Attorney Debra Yang have anything to do with her investigation into Rep. Jerry Lewis (R-CA)?

Montana Headlines pays homage to the Republican Senators on the Judiciary Committee who helped toast Attorney General, Alberto Gonzalez, and mulls Gonzalez’ complete lack of ability. Of course, it was these same Senators who failed completely to provide any oversight over Gonzalez and the Bush administration.

Digby actually finds some sympathy for Gonzalez. He’s the fall guy for Karl Rove and Bush himself.

DoJ staffer who, according to David Iglesias, “holds the keys to the kingdom,” wins immunity in exchange for her testimony. Could we finally see someone tell it like it is?

Here’s an interesting “coincidence”: the same network that has the prosecutor purge emails also hosted Ohio’s 2004 election results.

The White House leaks like a sieve. Too bad for national security. Where was Republican Congressional oversight?

Steve Benen on the Office of the Special Prosector’s investigation of the administration, and its head, Scott Bloch. Love this David Corn quote: “It is a dizzying situation. The investigator investigating officials who oversee the agency that is investigating the investigator. Forget firewalls. This looks more like a basement flooded with backed-up sewage–with the water rising.”

Your Orwellian moment: US military officials are not to refer to the Iraq War as “long.”

Kevin Tillman accuses the military and the administration of manipulating the facts of his brother’s death and using it for propaganda purposes.

Iraq veteran Pete Granato speaks out against the war.

Harper’s Scott Horton on David Broder: “The Washington Post‘s David Broder is called the “dean” of the Washington punditry. More recently, he seems to sum up everything that’s wrong with the class who brought you weapons of mass destruction, the Iraq war and the ever “resurgent” President Bush. He is the vessel of a received wisdom which keeps the war-president in place, cautioning against criticism and validating war- and fear-mongering at every turn. Rather than provide pearls of wisdom based on a lifetime in Washington politics, Broder dishes out naïve, uncritical appraisals of Bush which often have a sycophantic twist—by contrast, he strings administration critics with malicious attacks which reflect faulty reasoning and imaginary facts.”

Jon Stewart and John McCain debate the Iraq War. No-holds-barred interview style by Stewart shames the insider pundit class.

Links…

Services for Private 1st Class Kyle Bohrnsen, killed in Iraq, held in Phillipsburg.

Ed Kemmick – back from his luxury cruise – mulls over the possibility that Montana Meth program financier, Tom Siebel, has his eye on the governor’s seat. I would like to think that Montana would shun a wealthy out-of-stater buying his way into the state’s top seat with a drug program of dubious value…(more on that later…)

So…the budget is caught in the middle of a Mexican standoff

…so House Republican leaders take a couple of days off

Bill that would have targeted businesses that hired illegal aliens shot down in the legislature.

Moorcat mulls the snowpack and the possibility for drought in Beaverhead county.

A pair of MIT scientists have discovered a way to reduce vehicle fuel consumption and emissions with existing technology.

The real problem: underpriced parking.

From a Boing Boing interview with security expert Bruce Schneir: “I dislike security measures that require us to guess the plot correctly because if you guess wrong, it’s a waste of money. And it’s not even a fair game. It’s not like we pick our security, they pick their plot, we see who wins. The game is we pick our security, they look at our security, and then they pick their plot. The way to spend money on security – airport security, and security in general — is intelligence investigation and emergency response.”

Nicole makes a convincing argument that abortion should not be the state’s decision.

Newt Gingrich blames liberalism for the VaTech shootings, although the shooter was raised in a devout Christian household. Can we stop the blame game now?

Dig this: one of the heroes of the VaTech shooting was a Muslim student. Paranoid righties’ heads implode.

And here’s some insight on why folks try to find explanations for random acts

David Broder attacks Harry Reid for saying the war is over. Wow! That was a close brush with reality, wasn’t it Mr. Broder?

Some goodies we can expect from Bill Moyers’ special on how the media handled the Iraq War: “Buying the War.” Airs Wednesday.

Apparently the multimedia page of the NRSCC’s website is sponsored by Fox.

Border Patrol union release a no-confidence vote in their chief, David V. Aguilar, over the punishment of two agents who shot a drug-smuggler.

The FDA knew about the recent food contamination before it killed people. I smell a huge lawsuit. Another federal agency ruined by Bush’s brand of conservative politics.

Abramoff investigations chug on. This time former aide to Republican Rep. Don Young (AK) is set to plead guilty to corruption charges.

Why the prosecution of two AIPAC lobbyists represents a potential and permanent blow against the First Amendment by Alberto Gonzalez and Paul McNulty.

And remember, the prosecutor purge was all about suppressing voter turnout.

Meanwhile the President is going to stand by his man. Apparently Gonzo’s inept testimony has only “increased” Bush’s confidence in the Attorney General.

House Minority Leader John Boehner promised to assess the surge after 90 days. Well…it’s been 90 days!

Decorated vet presents the President with one of his Purple Hearts. “[Bush] said he didn’t feel like he had earned it.” No kidding.

Krugman claims that the scuffle over troop funding is more accurately akin to hostage situation “…in which a beleaguered President Bush, barricaded in the White House, is threatening dire consequences for innocent bystanders — the troops — if his demands aren’t met.”

Who supports the troops?

Iraq veteran John Bruhns speaks out against the war.

An Army sergeant wonders why the President honors the slain VaTech students, but not our fallen soldiers.

Another thinks, like Reid, the war can’t be won militarily.

Republican quotes of the week.

Torboto: the robot that tortures people.

A group of Christian teens disrupt live theater – Mike Daisey’s “Invincible Summer” — standing up en masse and pouring water on Daisey’s notes. Harmless in the end…but perhaps a disturbing foreshadowing of religion’s efforts to silence art? (With video.)

Links…

The Good Guv pens an editorial on energy for Forbes.

Erik “Allen” Iverson wants the chair of the state’s GOP. Fair enough. But the reasons why are pretty silly.

State Senate Democrats block funding for televised Legislature coverage??? What are you people thinking???

Jason notes that Conrad Burns has dropped $150K this year on legal fees. Hmm… The rumor back before the election was that the DoJ had their sights on Doolittle and ol’ Burnsie next… (You think the DoJ shenanigans had anything do to with the delay in the investigation?)

And Bill Mercer was singed during the roasting of Alberto Gonzalez.

Montana Headlines expresses some concerns about Max Baucus’ new-found opposition to fast-track trade authority. Ditto what he said.

Of course, Sirota – also an opponent of fast-track – notes that Baucus seems to be for the presidential authority again…

So much for the budget surplus. The state Legislature has killed it.

The most important opinion of the recent SCOTUS decision to uphold the “partial birth” abortion ban may be Justice Ginsburg’s dissent.

Why the decision portends ill for pregnant women, because the SCOTUS majority decided that “fetal health” was more important than scientific evidence or the mother’s health: “…this argument is already being used to justify court-ordered Cesarean sections in cases where physicians believe that a c-section will prove more beneficial to the fetus (this despite the fact that c-sections constitute major surgery and pose increased health risks to the pregnant woman and in some cases the fetus as well)…”

The federal government has a database that lists everyone who’s bought a prescription drug??? When did this happen?

And you thought liberals liked big, intrusive government? Utah wants to protect our youth from moral harm by classifying any state resident with unlocked wireless connection as a “porn provider.”

Yahoo is sued for violating the human rights of the Chinese dissidents it helped turn over to Chinese authorities. You can bet the business community isn’t going to allow the case to go to court and set a precedent.

James Madison on faith-based initiatives.

Some video montages of Rep. John Doolittle (R-CA), whose home was recently raided by the FBI, to remind us all what an *sshat this guy is.

FBI raids the business offices of family members of Rep. Rick Renzi (R-AZ) in its ongoing investigation of the lawmaker.

Everyone — everyone — agrees Alberto Gonzalez’ testimony yesterday was a disaster and agrees he’s at best an incompetent party-man. But that doesn’t mean he’s going to lose his job.

The Senate and House Judiciary Committees received a damning letter from anonymous DoJ employees decrying the politicization of the department. No wonder Gonzalez got fricasseed.

An example of how the DoJ got politicized was its use in a GOP plan to restrict voter turnout in key battleground states.

The Tao of Gonzo.

The RNC covers the President’s back over requested White House emails, although the organization is obstructing a Congressional investigation by doing so. Advice to GOP: don’t tether yourself to this Presidency.

Vermont Senate passes impeachment proceedings against the President and Vice President.

Bush in hand-picked town hall Q&A: “unplugged, unhinged, unscripted, incoherent.” Watch the clip and tell me otherwise.

Cuban terrorist released from federal detention: “His release sends a message to the world that the United States really is not serious in its war on terrorism.”

Secretary of Defense tells Iraqi government that the “clock is ticking,” contradicting Bush administration rhetoric. What gives?

Barry Posen considers the arguments against leaving Iraq and deconstructs them, one by one. And in doing so, demonstrates that it’s in the best interest for Iraq and the region for us to withdraw.

Former Iraqi minister, Ali Allawi, on the Daily Show.

Colbert defends the term, “The War on Terror.”

McSweeny’s pros and cons of the top 20 Democratic presidential candidates.

The 15 most embarrassing photos of George W Bush.

How a blogger helped clear the Duke students accused of rape.

Links…

Jon Tester likely to block any gun control talk that’s to surface out of the VaTech shootings.

The Senate blocks Baucus-led effort to negotiate drug prices for the elderly.

Congressional Quarterly profiles Max.

The administration disagrees with Max over tax cheats. Like Wal Mart. Or prominent Republican donors. (I’m shocked, shocked.)

Montana on the Real ID Act: “no, nope, no way, hell no.” Dennis Rehberg originally supported the bill.

The Montana Senate tax plan pushed to the House. Hilarity to ensue.

Public stream access is still kickin’…except for some reason the Republicans dislike it. Don’t they fish? Boat?

John Cole is right on about the VaTech shootings: “…we are about to learn all sorts of “lessons” in the aftermath of the VT shootings. And true to form, most of these lessons will be hastily implemented versions of pre-existing agendas, shoddily conceived, and in the long run, more painful than the tragedy itself.” (Hat tip to JEFF.)

Meanwhile, conservative commentators rush to blame the shootings on the dead. Classy.

By the way, students and professors did fight back.

C&L has a bunch of links up about the recent SCOTUS decision on abortion. I’ll have my thoughts later.

Rick Perlstien on the recent spate of e. coli outbreaks: “…what once looked to me like principle now looks to me like mania. Conservatism has been killing Americans.”

FBI raids Rep. John Doolittle’s (R-CA) home in what’s likely an Abramoff-related investigation. Doolittle blames his wife. (Does the name Kevin Ring sound familiar? It should.)

Deparment of the absurd: Senate bill on campaign finance transparency held up by a secret hold.

Senate Ethics Committee is probing Sen. Pete Domenici’s (R-NM) involvement in the firing of US attorney, David Iglesias.

The White House wants to obstruct Congressional inquiry into its RNC email. Not good, possibly illegal.

Ten out of 15 countries worldwide believe the US cannot be trusted to “act responsibly.” So goes our ideological advantage in world diplomacy.

Military experts say the draft may be necessary.

Links…

David’s sister earns the Bronze Star. Congratulations to her, along with thanks for her service and wishes for her safety and mission.

F-Words has found a link that gives some insight behind the madness of mass shootings, like what happened at Virginia Tech.

The Y Chromosone’s John recalls a shooting at the University of Arizona, where he was enrolled at the time, and urges the press to wait to start pointing the finger of blame.

Sarpy Sam’s exactly right: the VA Tech shootings isn’t about guns, or lack of guns, it’s about a madman. Let’s not politicize this, folks.

Like an *sshat, who rushes immediately to his keyboard to blame the shootings on evolution.

Matt thinks fundraising numbers show that Dennis Rehberg is not going after Max Baucus’ Senate seat.

Max Baucus may not have enough votes to stop a filibuster over the bill to allow the government to negotiate drug prices for seniors.

Grist’s blog does not like Schweitzer’s touting of coal as an alternative to oil.

Matt makes a plea for insuring children. Hear, hear.

Montana Headlines makes a plea for legislators to override the Good Guv’s veto to keep telecom taxes low, in order that rural customers will be well served. Color me undecided. On one hand, rural folks do deserve cell phone service – and arguably have a greater need for it. On the other, I’m not a big fan of giving continued handouts to big, inefficient telecomm companies. Is there a compromise here, somewhere?

Shane lauds Kendall Van Dyk’s plan to extend tax relief to renters. They pay taxes, too, you know.

Fake news aficionados most likely to be up on current events. Big name media outlets everywhere should be cringing in shame.

Missoula approves universal mail-in vote; Matt likes the idea.

Montana Liberty Project mulls happiness, and offers some economic suggestions on how it might be achieved here in Missoula…

Knobye thinks the biggest knuckleheads in Missoula’s pickle-gate are the folks rushing to defend the Pickle Barrel before knowing what actually happened. That is, they could be defending a couple of racist f*cks.

Ex-police chief Ron Tussing’s candidacy for Billings mayor gets off to a poor start. (Hat tip to David Crisp, who analyzes the scuffle.)

I couldn’t let a links post pass without a nod to this lovely graphic of the Balyeat brothers.

Why the anti-voting supporters are wrong: your vote is not a privilege, it is a right.

David Crisp defends our right to privacy from a “champion of liberty.”

States reject abstinence-only sex ed, because it doesn’t work.

Giuliani tells Regent University students that they have to “get beyond” abortion. I agree! Which is

IRS to middle-class tax filers: “we’re coming after you.” Feel paranoid? You should. The Bush administration let go the auditors who investigate wealthy tax cheats. This is class warfare, people.

Contrary to what the White House says, the President does not have the right to “exclude…discordant viewpoints” from the public sphere.

Abramoff scandal reaches the White House.

The missing White House emails touch more than just the prosecutor purge. Instead it hints at a culture of corruption in our nation’s highest office.

Apparently New Mexico Senator Pete Domenici called President Bush about pesky and later-to-be-fired US attorney David Iglesias. Bush spokesperson: Phone call? What phone call?

Ex-DoJ official, Michael Battle on the fired attorneys: there were no performance problems.

Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez’s “apology”: “I’m sorry you all are making such a big deal out of this.”

Harper’s on the devolution of the GOP: “I believe it’s unfair to a great political party – unfair to Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt and Dwight David Eisenhower – to call the current tenants at 1600 Pennsylvania ‘Republicans.’ A new label is far more appropriate, because it describes the end state likely to emerge from their transfiguration of American political institutions, namely ‘Banana-Republicans.’”

McCain’s plan B for Iraq: there is no plan B.

Steve Benen contemplate how “mature” people view Iraq.

Iraqi government is crumbling over US refusal to set timetable on withdrawal.

Advice for Alberto Gonzalez from Stephen Colbert.

Links…

Praise for Montana’s latest Iraq casualty, Kyle Bohrensen.

Max Baucus reverses course on fast-track trade authority for the President; he now opposes it. Good move, Max!

Max also drives bill through the Finance Committee that allows the government to negotiate prescription drug prices for its Medicare patients. Good move, Max!

Max states his position on Iraq to MontanaFem. Can anybody decipher the email?

The Great Falls Tribune comments on the national scrutiny Max is receiving as chair of the Senate Finance Committee. As is the usual style for these things, the paper’s editorial board urges Max to…well…it doesn’t really make a statement at all.

Unlikely allies: the Good Guv and the state GOP is worried about the Senate Democrats’ spending increases in the state budget.

Jeff Mangan thinks the Good Guv’s stream access amendment is unconstitutional.

The Notorious Mark T thrashes Roger Koopman (“…his presence in Helena is lice on the body politic…”) but endorses Koopman’s desire for an inquiry into intellectual diversity on campuses, only not for the reasons Koopman does…

NorthWestern tries to buy its way into PSC approval of its sale to an Australian company by offering to move its headquarters to Montana.

The Boise Weekly scoops the world’s press with his coverage of Idaho Governor Butch Otter’s trade mission to Cuba.

The Republican presidential candidate with the best record on the Second Amendment is a Western Democrat.

Jon Stewart evaluates the Republican presidential field.

Couric goofs again. This time about Obama. Another case of plagiarism, this time from a right-wing blog?

The only type of scandal currently missing from the Bush administration is a sex scandal. That’s about to change.

Oh, the irony! Conservative groups sue the FDA for politicizing the agency!

Ex-DoJ official, Kyle Sampson, caught with his rhetorical pants down. Um…why would you lie so blatantly to a Congressional committee? Do these *sshats think they won’t get caught?

More prosecutor purge news from Wisconsin.

Meanwhile, DoJ 5th-amendment taker, Monica Goodling, is considering trading immunity for testimony. Ooo, that can’t be good news for the Bush administration.

As you might imagine, troops are not exactly thrilled by their tour extension.

Speaking of extending the troops’ tours, Bush’s strange about-face on the issue is for one of two reasons: (1) he has no idea of what’s going on in the war; (2) they were saving the announcement for political reasons, and the news was leaked.

Glenn Greenwald: “So apparently, the American Founders risked their lives and fortunes in order to wage war against Great Britain and declare independence from the King — all in order to vest “near dictatorial power” in the American President in all matters of foreign policy and national security.”

Lee Iacocca: “Throw the bums out!”

Jon Stewart comments on Iraq, the President, funding, and the War Czar.

Colbert suggests a candidate for War Czar: Donald Rumsfeld.

Better Living through Blogging!’s david brings us the adult sheep finder.

Links…

Phillipsburg soldier, Kyle Bohrnsen, was killed in Iraq. My condolences, and thanks, to his family.

Jon wins kudos for his independent streak in the Senate. Thanks, Jon, that’s why we elected you.

Baucus goes after tax cheats. While he didn’t mention the worst cheats – the rich — maybe he’ll pressure the administration to rehire of the IRS employees who audit the wealthiest Americans.

Meanwhile Baucus plunges on with his Internet censorship project: creating a virtual red-light district for sites with “racy” material and requiring operators of such sites to register with the government. Ugh.

Space financier and former INSA backer, Robert Bigelow, is back in the news with his inflatable space stations. He probably won’t be looking to Montana for investing, thanks to his getting burnt in the recent INSA scam.

Yellowstone county commissioner and Democrat Bill Kennedy to run for Montana’s House seat.

Brian Schweitzer adds stream access to a House Republican’s bridge bill. Republican angry; Montanans happy.

Montana Headlines is dismayed by the state budget proposed by the Senate, forgetting that the Democrats are in the driver’s seat in the legislature. But notice how the budget got passed without all the fuss and rancor and delay found in the House? Expect more Sturm und Drang from House leadership, and eventually a budget closer to what the Good Guv originally proposed.

The Chamber of Commerce on the state business equipment tax.

Mike Wheat, candidate for Attorney General, has put up his website.

Missoula House Authority’s basket of woes.

Larry LaRocco: the next Jon Tester?

Is the GOP losing support in Utah?

Shane points out that 64% of Americans think the government should guarantee health care for all.

End Times paranoia: “America, [they are told], is being ruled by evil, clandestine organizations that hide behind the veneer of liberal, democratic groups….The radical Christian right has no religious legitimacy. It is a mass political movement.”

Imus dropped from MSNBC.

Neocon Paul Wolfowitz abused his authority to get his girlfriend extra pay.

The Notorious Mark T points out that a nation very close to us, and that supports terrorists, is getting off without much scrutiny.

The Denver Post profiles Howard Dean: “Dean is on a self-anointed mission: to purify the Democratic Party by taking power from the governing class and returning it to the people.” (Hat tip to Julie Fanselow, who’s got some key info about the upcoming Democratic National Convention.)

Christopher Dodd challenges the Democratic presidential hopefuls to support the Reid/Feingold resolution to force withdrawal from Iraq.

Matt Yglesias argues that the GOP hasn’t learned from its 2006 defeat: “The truth, of course, is that this is all backwards. The Republican Party has been suffering not from a shortfall of Bush apologists in public roles, but from a surfeit of them; not from insufficient aggression in, for example, the politics of national security but from far, far too much.”

Fred Thompson has cancer. Our thoughts and hopes go out to him and his family.

DNC: Mitt Romney has hired John Rakolta – the *sshole responsible for the illegal push polls here last election – as a campaign chair. Classy.

I’m with Atrios: the “gotcha” attack on Giuliani about the price of milk is ridiculous. I buy gallons of milk all the time, and I couldn’t tell you how much it costs. I just put it in the cart among the squirming tots, and off we go!

Latest polls shows McCain slipping to third among Republican presidential hopefuls. (Clinton first among Democrats.)

Edwards, Clinton, and Richardson speak about Iraq.

Deadly attack strikes the heart of Baghdad’s Green Zone.

A “war Czar”? This is some kind of joke, right? No wonder no one will take the job.

The Pentagon is going to extend the tours of duty for all military personnel in Afghanistan and Iraq.

There’s a rift between Sunni insurgents in Iraq and al Qaeda – which will take root only if we withdraw from the country.

It’s official: nobody loves Dick Cheney.

What’s with the Bush administration penchant for destroying effective government agencies? First FEMA and the EPA, now the FBI. Administration terror policies mean that billions in theft is being ignored.

Montana’s Bill Mercer testifies behind closed doors about the prosecutor purge.

Prosecutor purge scandal spinoff #1: Turns out that the use of non-governmental email accounts to conduct government policy by White House officials the law and White House policy, and has p*ssed off Senate Judiciary Committee chair, Patrick Leahy.

Prosecutor purge scandal spinoff #2: Despite cries of voter fraud for the past five years by Republicans, it just didn’t happen.

Jon Stewart on Imusgate.

And Colbert defends his anti-Hungarian comments — “paprika-snorting goulis” – from Matt Lauer.

The Missoula Independent gets an exclusive interview with director David Lynch.

Montana Jones posts his blog’s code of conduct.

Links…

Baucus to support government negotiation for prescription drugs for its Medicare patients?

Montana Headlines – in reply to Jeff Mangan’s urging of Senate Republican leadership to compromise – says the burden of compromise should rest on Senate Democrats. (And you wonder why nothing’s getting done in Helena?)

And then MH comments on the “hot partisanship” in Helena. I’m not sure I’d blame both sides equally in this fight. After all, it was Scott Sales who started this session with a declaration of war. And why split the budget bill – HB 2 – into six, seven, or eight (I forget exactly) separate bills? That was just a thumb on the nose. Democrats are showing strong resistance, but I think that kind of unity is just what’s called for.

The Chamber of Commerce blog – Montana Main Street blog – objects to the Good Guv’s veto of the wireless tax bill. Jeff Mangan clarifies the Good Guv’s veto.

Wulfgar! mulls the server-exemption for minimum wage, guns, and the Pickle Barrel brouhaha.

Moorcat mulls the guns that you should have.

Wait! I thought there was supposed to be a debate between Gingrich and Kerry on climate change…but didn’t Gingrich acknowledge the reality of the problem and call for green conservatism to help curb carbon emissions? It ain’t a debate when both sides agree, is it?

Princeton Professor Walter Murphy’s presence on the watch list might have been by chance, not intent.

So far, if crowd size is any indication, Democrats are in for a big year in 2008.

Alberto Gonzalez subpoened.

The WaPo gives Bill Mercer little lovin’. (Hat tip to Matt Singer.)

Why it’s not likely the Bush administration would win a court battle over executive privilege and the prosecutor purge.

Navy vet and private contractor and former Bush supporter David Vance tells the story of his torture at the hands of US officials: “If they can do this to a former Navy man and an American, what is happening to people in facilities all over the world run by the American government?”

Matthew Yglesias on David Broder’s column, which calls for Congressional Democrats to “compromise” with Bush on Iraq war funding: “the Democrats should basically give in to Bush’s demands, in exchange for which Bush will continue to implement Bush’s war policy absent formal fetters but will suddenly start doing so in the manner of a mature, serious person rather than, say, George W. Bush.”

Iraqi official pens book on all of the missteps made in Iraq by the US.

And now the cost of the war is filtering down to the states.

Tens of thousands of Iraqis take to the streets to protest US occupation.

Jon Stewart on John McCain’s stroll through Baghdad.

Surprise! This isn’t the first time Imus went after a black woman.

Obama appears on Letterman.

The Notorious Mark T chips in on the future of blogging.

Iraq: Why the media failed.

The BBC has made a documentary of the Westboro Baptists. Interesting watch, highly recommended.

Johnny Hart dies, twenty years after his comic strip.

Links…

A great profile of Jon Tester in this Sunday’s Missoulian

And from the pages of the profile, Matt Singer points out Jon’s thoughts about the war and wonders how we can push both him and Max Baucus towards a more firm stance against Bush.

Montana’s Congressional delegation to fight the removal of 50 missiles from Malmstrom’s mission. IMHO, they should be looking for new, forward-looking missions instead.

Tester co-sponsors the allocation of $315 million for research on carbon-dioxide sequestration. Which the Good Guv needs, if his coal-to-gas scheme is to work.

Watch Max grill an EPA representative over the allocation of funds for cleaning up Libby.

Former state Senator, Jeff Mangan, calls for Republican leadership in the Senate to step forward and salvage the budget process.

Mike Dennison has a point about the Good Guv’s energy plan: it’s not terribly coherent.

So…just why are servers going to be excluded from Montana’s minimum wage?

Here’s a report on “New West” versus “Old West” economies from New West — gee, I wonder towards which side the online journal gavitates.

The LA Times mulls the new-found political power of Native American communities in places like Montana.

The Washington Post agrees with Iran on the proper role of women, and is worried that the Muslim world thinks we’re all gay.

John McCain “explains” his stroll through Baghdad on “60 Minutes.” Shall we set the over-under for when McCain drops out of the presidential race?

And you wonder why Democrats want to boycott Fox? This hit piece almost makes me want to support Clinton.

Josh Marshall scrutinizes Rachel Paulose and the resignation of four Minneapolis-based US attorneys. The incident may provide more evidence of misconduct on behalf of the administration.

And in Wisconsin, we find out that the state GOP pressured the DoJ through Rove to prosecute Democratic voter fraud just before a tight gubernatorial election.

Michael J. Strickings on the uncomfortable breach of church and state that the administration hiring of Regent-University-educated lawyers represents.

Kevin Drum describes how unqualified Regent University grads get plum appointments in the DoJ.

Now even Newt wants Alberto to resign.

How a retired Marine colonel and renowned professor can be put on the terrorist watch list.

Hometown Baghdad,” a series of Iraqi-made YouTube videos depicting the lives of young people in Baghdad.

Why asking presidential hopefuls for their Iraq plan is pointless.

It doesn’t matter who wins in 2008, US troops are in Iraq to stay, says NYTimes Magazine writer Noah Feldman.

Who supports the troops? Apparently not the administration, which is sending unfit troops back to battle and maltreats the wounded who stay behind.

The beginning of the end: the blogger code of conduct. Reminds me of the comics code of a half century ago, and a nice gateway into the legitimizing of a handful of officially sanctioned blogs and pushing the rest to the periphery.

Another possibility of the future of blogs: in Japan, all political content is banned from online sources 12 days prior to an election.

Links…

Shane writes a great tribute to Big Hole National Park, which is not only beautiful, but a crucial part of our nation’s history.

Jon’s support of the Iraqi supplemental bill with withdrawal timetables has not cost him politically in Montana. That’s a good sign for ending the war, opines Terrence Samuel.

The Good Guv rakes in the dough.

Cece pens up her efforts in lobbying the Senate over the reform of constituency accounts. Well done!

Why is Northwestern lobbying against Senate efforts to buy Montana’s utilities?

So much for free trade democratizing China. Turns out big corporations like the ability to suppress workers’ rights. Surprise.

Climate change driving American Southwest to a permanent drought.

Is Nancy Pelosi violating federal law prohibiting Congressional representatives from making treaties with foreign power? Not so, says the WaPo: “Foreign policy experts generally agree that Pelosi’s dealings with Middle East leaders have not strayed far, if at all, from those typical for a congressional trip.”

SCOTUS ducks the rights of Gitmo detainees to habeas corpus out of cynical, purely political grounds.

The casualty of the prosecutor purge: trust in our legal system. Which is exactly why this is a big deal.

Bill O’Reilly loses it.

Grist hosts a Q&A with Montana writer, environmentalist, Christian, and fly-fisherman, David James Duncan.

Links…

The Nation features Montana in its article on “Bottom-up Power.”

Marc Racicot emerges as a player in the prosecutor purge. Ochenski explains.

Baucus admits that the U.S. health system is “near collapse.” Interesting…

Much needed initiative reform passes on a bipartisan vote in the state House.

Montana Main Street blog has posed an excellent question: how to deal with the legislature’s increasing workload?

Missoula eatery denies a Saudi student serviceallegedly for racial reasons. Hubbub ensues.

Missoula city officials consider raising parking tickets fines, which are currently 2 dollars.

Between a rock and a hard place: Shane takes a look at utility regulation and doesn’t like what he sees.

Idaho ranks 54th in power in the US government, because of all those Republicans. (Check out the rankings: Baucus is 7th and Tester 83rd in the Senate; Rehberg 387th in the House. Montana is 16th overall!)

Larry LaRocco to announce his candidacy for Idaho’s Senate seat current held by Larry Craig. Julie Fanselow assesses the situation. Personally, I like Larry Grant. (The three “Larrys”? What’s up with that? What are the odds?)

Blogger Josh Wolf freed after striking a deal with prosecutors. Basically he has to turn over his tape, but he won’t have to testify in front of a grand jury. Wolf has posted the disputed video on his blog.

Now that Exxon-funded CEI admits that climate change exists and is likely caused by human activity, look for a shift in rhetoric from the nay-sayers.

Obama’s got the grassroots support and the money; Edwards has the people. Clinton’s got…panache?

The Great White Hunter Mitt Romney – the same man who said “I’ve been a hunter pretty much all my life” – has hunted exactly twice.

Meanwhile, the New York Sun urges Dick Cheney to throw his hat into the presidential ring! I agree with Ezra: what an awesome idea! “Place a constant reminder of George W. Bush on the campaign trail [that] will wreck the Republican Party for a generation.”

Russ Feingold defends his bill pulling funding for the Iraq War if Bush vetoes the present bill.

Remember the claim at the heart of the Plame affair, about how Iraq had purchased uranium from Niger? The administration knew it was bogus.

Administration says it fired prosecutor David Iglesias for being an “absentee landlord” during his tenure. Because he was off fulfilling his Naval reservist obligations. Oops! It’s against the law to discriminate against members of the military…

Meanwhile, the administration crony replacing US attorney Bud Cummins – Timothy Griffin – apparently lied about his prosecutorial career.

Steve Benen analyzes Bush’s recent press conference, which he used to attack Congressional Democrats.

Digby on Grover Norquist’s claim that Bush’s base doesn’t care about Iraq; they’ll do whatever Bush wants: “So [President Bush] is not subject to normal political pressure. As Norquist says, the base will stick with him come hell or high water. (I believe it’s a mistake, however, to think it has anything to do with him personally — the base of the Republican party are authoritarians who will blindly follow their leader no matter who he is, which is why they need to be kept away from the brown shirt section of Macy’s.) This is now a mind game between the Democrats and Bush/Cheney. The Republicans in congress are nearly irrelevant except to the extent a couple of them can help get legislation passed and feed the GOP disarray. All negotiations going forward will necessarily be strategized with that in mind.”

Not that Bush would do anything scummy, like bypass the Senate to install Swiftboater Sam Fox into his ambassadorship. (Shane’s take.)

Creepy: video of Cheney lurking in the bushes during the President’s press conference.

Glenn Greenwald on big-media’s assumption that, if they say it, it must be reliable: “…do you have sufficient faith in the judgment and integrity of ABC News to rely blindly on its assessments, made in secret, about who is and is not credible when it comes to claims that could contribute to spawning a new war against Iran?” No, I don’t. Who would after the media’s stumbling on WMD?

The Nation makes a financial plea on behalf of bloggers: throw us a bone! (Man, I would love to be able to do this full time…)

South Park – literally – skewers Bill Donohue.

The British hostage crisis:

How Iran used the capture of 15 British Navy members to score points with the people of the Middle East.

The crisis displayed Ahmadinejad’s hypocrisy, and was engineered for Iran’s political gain, but now progess in the Middle East is possible.

And look at that — dialog produced results, a lesson the US government can learn.

Andrew Sullivan: “Iran, that disgusting regime, is showing much of the world that it treats prisoners more humanely than the U.S. That’s the propaganda coup they are achieving. And you know who set them up to score this huge victory in the propaganda war? Bush and Cheney and Rumsfeld, who authorized all the abuse at Abu Ghraib and elsewhere throughout the war….Tehran never had a better friend than George W. Bush. He has given Islamist thugs the moral highground.”

Glenn Greenwald critiques the way neo-cons wanted to handle the crisis.

Newt Gingrich, on threatening Iran if he were President: “But frankly, if you’d prefer to show the planet that you’re tiny and we’re not, we’re prepared to simply cut off your economy….” Sounds like a man who reads too many penis enlargement emails.

Links…

Jeff Mangan blames the Good Guv for the Senate’s rejection of his tax credit plan for alternative energy development. Yesterday I slammed Jim Elliot and the GOP in these links for killing the bill, but today, in a soberer frame of mind, I have to agree with Jeff. There were too many problems with the bill, and it was introduced too late.

But the Good Guv opposes the GOP’s attempt to kill same-day voter registration, and that’s a very, very good thing.

Cece testifies before a Senate committee and tells us all about it. Good stuff.

Glenn Beck claims white Christian Americans “get no respect,” and lists a long litany of persecutions against his kind. Er…Glenn? Get a grip on yourself, pal. White Christian Americans own the planet. Enough of the false self pity.

Police records reveal that a secret FBI group violated an anti-war group’s civil rights in 2002. They were detained and questioned about their political and religious beliefs.

Bush claims that his military commanders came up with the “surge,” when in fact it was conceived in a conservative think tank by someone with no military experience. (Military commanders were in near unanimity in their opposition to the “surge.”)

Steve Benen thinks it’s time “to show the President how wrong he is.” Excellent advice.

Reid sums it up: “If the President vetoes this bill he will have delayed funding for troops and kept in place his strategy for failure.”

Where did Keith Richards’ father go? Up his nose.

A new third-party candidate enters the presidential chase, accompanied by some intriguing campaign pledges.

Links…

Ed Kemmick on the GOP’s weird obsession with Brian Schweitzer.

The Good Guv’s tax-break plan for alternative energy development derailed by Senate Republicans and Jim Eliot, D-Trout Creek.

Health and Human Services budget augmented by Senate Dems and GOPers.

Senate Republicans help restore the state’s education budget.

Legislature about to kick millions in state money to billionaire Tom Siebel’s Montana Meth Project. Not crazy about this decision: do we even know if the project works?

Climate change legislation tabled by House Republican nay-sayers.

Drunk driver and Republican Rep. Scott Boggio repents.

MH’s Sunday links on Judy Martz, health insurance, Hardin’s new detention facility, the bad self-defense House bill, and that c*cksucker, James Cox Kennedy. I found myself nodding, yes, yes, yes.

Matt Singer reminds us who was responsible for the recent and crappy Medicare bill.

Tainted wheat gluten that caused pet food recall have entered the human food supply. FDA: *crickets*

The SCOTUS decides that, indeed, the EPA does have the right to regulate carbon dioxide emission from cars, a “rebuke to the Bush administration.”

Business as well as liberals want universal health care. That makes sense; business – especially small business — shouldn’t shoulder the burden of health coverage for their employers.

Tommy Thompson, former Wisconsin governor, enters the Republican presidential primary fray. Why not? It’s wide open right now.

And if Fred Thompson throws his hat into the ring, any re-run of “Law & Order” in which he appears would have to be put on ice.

Shelly Lewis comments on John McCain’s recent Iraq stunt, in which he tied up US military personnel and material in order to prove he could take a stroll to a Bagdhad marketplace, by gum! What an *sshat. (And the market came under sniper fire today.)

Take it from somebody who should know, military victory is not possible in Iraq.

Meanwhile, General Petraeus allies himself with the Republican Party. This should not happen. In fact it’s quite creepy, given the authoritarian tendencies of the administration.

Prosecutor purge is political, report shows: “No other administration in contemporary times has had such a clear pattern of filling chief prosecutors’ jobs with its own staff members, said experts on U.S. attorney’s offices.”

And a long-time Justice officials says Bush administration – unlike any other in his 35 years – politicized the department.

Attorney General…Orrin Hatch? Erk!

Wow. Here’s a scandal that seems to sum up the Bush administration: a government contractor that failed its task (a $1-billion-a-year reading program) has been hired to evaluate the program. Seriously. Although the article is dated April 1…hm…

The latest White House strategy in smearing a political dissident: they hint about his personal life to the DC press corps. Classy.

Um, remember those administration claims that North Korea was enrichening uranium? Oops.

An old friend of Dick Cheney denounces the administration. On Bush: “Think Dan Quayle with cowboy boots.” On Cheney: “A vice president in control is bad enough. Worse yet is a vice president out of control.”

America, this is your Republican Party: “That is the modern Republican Party. Its base, its ruling factions, simply do not believe in our most basic Constitutional guarantees.”

It’s a shame, really, that posts like this are necessary to remind us on which legal and political philosophies our country is based on.

Links…

Earlier primary approved for Montana. jhwygirl is conflicted. I think it’s a great idea. The shorter the primary, the better.

Montana is the worst when it comes to taxing the working poor.

Ed Kemmick speaks out against HB 340 – which would allow folks to brandish firearms in order to intimidate. (Oh, and remember the GOP’s tacky “death mailers”? Apparently it’s based on the story of a woman having her gun taken from her – only she was high on meth at the time and a little…er…unstable.)

House Republicans claim a Democrat’s idea as their own; play politics with military families.

Is Stan Boone the right man for the state’s Board of Livestock? It doesn’t look that way.

Meanwhile, the rich get richer and the poor poorer. Sometimes I feel like I’m in “Groundhog Day.”

Idaho’s 1st House District has a Democratic challenger: Rand Lewis. We’re waiting to see what Larry Grant does…maybe a run at the Senate seat?

Is Senator Gordon Smith (R-OR) going to face a primary challenge from the right? Gee, I hope so!

GOP culture of corruption lives on: Nevada’s Jim Gibbon got a defense contractor a juicy no-bid contractor – who hired his wife as a contractor.

Shane found a great piece in the LA Times on how the Dept of Justice – for the first time – was crassly politicized, and what that should mean to us.

Bill Mercer says he would testify about his role in the prosecutor purge if asked.

Another profile of DoJ 5th-amendment-taker, Monica Goodling, which shows a connected, but not qualified, crony.

Might Karl Rove aides be resigning over the prosecutor purge?

Colby mulls Gitmo, and why they can’t close it: some of the prisoners might actually be innocent.

Has the administration been following the Constanza doctrine as a guide for foreign policy?

If you’re a Republican and thought 2006 was a bad year politically, wait until 2008!

The Notorious Mark T takes a look back at the US and British involvement with Iraq. And you wonder why we’re not popular?

Kossak Meteor Blades on the kidnap of 15 British soldiers by Iran.

Jon Stewart tries to talk sense into the Iranians.

Colby finds more largesse in government spending on the war – and is shocked, shocked! by the lack of oversight allowed by Congress. I would be shocked, shocked! if much of this money happened to benefit fat-cat friends of the administration.

The. Best. Video. Ever. Well…close to, anyway.

Steven Colbert: The surge is working.

Jon Stewart on executive privilege.

Links…

The six eight pack reduced to four in the state Senate. Call the waaaaaaaaaahmublance!

Speaking of why the House Republicans are annoying, they added “poison pills” to good legislation to ensure they self-destruct should their budget bills be scrapped. A new low, indeed.

Speaking of annoying Republican legislators, state Representative and drunk driver Scott Boggio’s car failed to register itself. In Boggio’s behavior, Jeff Mangan finds evidence for why term limits is a bad idea.

A bill punishing businesses for hiring illegal immigrants bites the dust. If you want to discourage illegal immigration, I think this is the way to do it. If you think we need the cheap labor…well, I guess that’s up to the federal government to hand out guest worker visas.

Green party doomed in Montana. In other news, the sun set in the east this morning.

Tony Snow’s cancer has moved to his liver. Here’s to hoping that Snow’s cancer is just a temporary setback.

John Kerry has a great suggestion on helping Iraq vets and Army reservists: small business loans and tax breaks.

Keith Olbermann slams Tom Delay for comparing liberals to Hitler and his indictment with the Holocaust. Go back to killing cockroaches, Tommy boy.

Jim Webb’s aide busted for carrying the Senator’s 9mm into the Capitol building. For some reason, conservative panties are knotting over Webb’s right to bear arms.

The recently approved House bill funding Iraq, but setting timetables, passed the Senate and force the President into an ugly position of vetoing funding for his war. Why did this happen? Because the people wanted it. (Shane’s take.)

Jon Stewart parses the Iraqi funding bill. Must-watch video.

The media turns on Obama.

Digby, as always, nails it on the media blowback against Edwards’ decision to stay in the race, despite his wife’s illness: “This is one of the characteristics I viscerally loathe in certain members the human species — sanctimonious, busy-body, judgmentalism coming from people who have neither the insight, the perspective or the sensitivity to render any kind of opinion about other people’s personal lives and marriages. And yet they do it, with great confidence in their own ability to see inside other people’s most personal relationships.”

Hm. The Duke Cunningham hijinks appear to head directly to the White House. No wonder why Carol Lam got fired. Thanks, Bill!

The latest links on the prosecutor purge, including some evidence that Americans are keenly interested in the investigation, and that, yes, it’s a “winning” issue for Democrats, despite what the DC pundits claim.

It’s “open warfare” in the Department of Justice, as the infighting begins.

Remember DoJer Monica Goodling, who’s pleading the 5th? Maybe the first question she should be asked is, how did you get the job?

Meanwhile, the swiftboating of attorneys has begun. This time, though, it’s one of their own.

Jon Stewart woodsheds Alberto Gonzalez: “As the parent of a two-and-a-half-year-old, I routinely hear more convincing explanations for how feces got in my DVD player.”

Swiftboater Sam Fox, nominated to be ambassador to Belgium, reaps what he sows.

Meanwhile, an update on the GSA scandal. Democratic Representative Bruce Braley destroys GSA chief Lurita Doan. What’s next? Charges?

With all the scandals, White House officials are eschewing using the official government email accounts. Which is stupid for a number of reasons, the not least of which is that it’s a national security risk.

Kossak Kagro X (who’s quickly becoming one of my favorite bloggers) examines the motivations of the White House using WaPo’s Harold Meyerson’s column as the frame. His conclusion? “This. Is. How. Republicans. ‘Govern.’”

Impeachment talk is moving into the “mainstream.” I do believe impeachment should be a conservative option. That is, it should enjoy a wide base of support that stretches across the partisan divide. Looks like that’s happening.

Why torture doesn’t work: Australians believe David Hicks’ guilty plea was the result of his treatment at Gitmo, not out of sincerely admittance of guilt.

Why are Democrats becoming increasingly popular? Maybe because the GOP is mired in scandals about abusing power for personal financial and political gain, the Democrats are planning to extend the guarantee of liberty. That’s right. The ERA is making a comeback.

Links…

by Jay Stevens

Matt Singer writes an op-ed for New West on the Montana GOP’s distrust of young voters.

Singer also notices that House Republicans don’t want to help out the families of soldiers deployed in Iraq.

Montana Headlines thinks the House Republicans pulled off a sweet one by getting a health and human services bill without the aid of Democrats. *Yawns* Too bad the Senate and Governor will have a say in the procedure.

Charles Johnson looks to the state Senate for some common decency and the solutions that will solve the budget battle, and questions the efficacy of the state’s term limits.

While Chuck blames term limits – he’s got a point, too, I think – Shane lays the Budget Follies at the feet of the Montana Republicans.

The CoSs of Tester, Baucus, and Rehberg profiled – Stephanie Shriock, Jim Messina, and Eric Iverson, respectively.

Missoula county commissioners amend the marijuana initiative’s policy as passed by county voters because they think we’re a pack of morons. (Hat tip to Montana Jones.) Yes, McMeekin and Van Valkenberg, we knew it included felony possession. Go bust real crime, please.

Justin is disgusted by Boggio’s hypocrisy in the recent DUI stop. Ed Kemmick opines that Boggio shouldn’t evade his responsibility in the matter.

These guys want to add their two cents to our bison debate, but dangit if I can understand what the h*ll they’re saying…

David Crisp pans Idaho’s decision to make English the state’s official language: “If English can’t hold its own without official government sanction, then no legislation can save it. And if English can hold its own, then no legislation is needed.”

So…the NYPD was spying on left-wing protesters in preparation for the 2004 Republican Convention. But where there’s smoke, there’s fire. What else were national law enforcement officials doing?

Meanwhile, the Senate considers the House’s Iraqi funding bill, which includes a timetable for withdrawal. Support it.

Katie Couric: *sshole. For a thoughtful look at the Edwards’ decision to keep in the race, see the Faithful Progressive’s own bout with cancer. By the way, did you know Couric kept on working during her own husband’s bout with cancer?

Former administration errand-boy, Robert Novak, throws Bush under a bus. Kick ‘em while they’re down, eh, Bobby?

Gee, what a shocker? Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez was actually quite involved in the prosecutor purge, despite what he testified to before the Senate.

Meanwhile, another Justice official plans on taking the fifth before the Senate Justice committee. Looks like the DoJ officials know they’re crooks.

Richard Power speculates on what’s to come in the prosecutor purge and thinks the current scandal is just scraping the tip of the iceberg, including some revelations about vote-counting fraud in the 2004 and 2006 elections.

The Brad Blog considers the GOP’s phantom voter fraud and its role in the prosecutor purge.

Steve Benen examines a four-minute clip of the Chris Matthews’ show on the prosecutor purge that shows all that’s wrong with the DC punditry.

Josh Marshall on why the prosecutor purge is a big deal.

Kossak Kagro X speculates what will happen when the House and Senate Judiciary Committee subpoenas are ignored by the White House.

The next White House scandal? The politicization of the GSA, which would be in violation of the Hatch Act.

And, of course, there’s our old pal, Jack Abramoff, who’s still reeling ‘em in. This time, the former number 2 at the Interior Department. Wait a minute! Isn’t that the administration ol’ Connie used to work with?

The War in Iraq: Four Years of Winning.”

Tinkering with our notion of Jesus’ betrayer, Judas: “…Jesus wasn’t all he’s made out to be, that Judas alone saw through him, and that it was this, not the betrayal, that has made him a hate figure in Christianity ever since.”

On the sad state of American newspapers: “Most American papers look as if they’ve stopped caring and are just going through the motions. And it’s a really bad time for newspapers to look bad.”

How you can make sure your sex life isn’t harmful to the environment. Uh…vegan condoms?

Links…

The Budget Follies: Senate Democrats to the rescue!

Matt Singer mulls the budget impasse. HB2 looks like it’ll come back, with permanent property tax relief…for big out-of-state corporations?

Montana Headlines hands out useful advice for state legislators while serving their terms.

Jeff Mangan doesn’t even know what a “progressive” is anymore. (And secretly fears that he may be one!)

Montana Headlines makes a stab at getting himself labeled “progressive” over the issue of fast-track trade authority.

Matt Singer speculates on the possible Democratic House candidates for 2008…

Jon Tester speaks out in favor of stricter farm subsidies that cut out the big agricultural multi-nationals.

Max Baucus bails out Butte bagpipes.

The Misanthrope gets all socialist on us over carbon credits

Ezra Klein on the libertarian misperception about universal health care: “One reason I spend less time arguing health care with libertarians these days is that it doesn’t seem productive. If you really don’t want to believe that other system’s in the world are better, you won’t. If the costs, outcomes, access, and equity advantages offered by the French, German, Japanese, Scandinavian, or Veteran’s Affairs systems don’t convince you, you simply don’t want to be convinced.”

Hiliary hires union buster, thumbs nose at working people everywhere.

Elections have consequences

Bill Mercer’s appointment to the DoJ on the line over prosecutor purge, as it should be.

There are ways to tamper with criminal investigations other than firing attorneys. You could, for example, give the attorney investigating the Tom Delay corruption case a judgeship.

Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez is staying on in order to “protect our kids.” Do my kids a favor, Mr Gonzalez: don’t let the door hit you in the *ss on your way out.

Not bad for people who are just bloggers. Media credits bloggers for making the prosecutor purge an issue.

Must-watch video: Richard Engel’s war diary.

Jon Stewart checks in with Doris Kearns Goodwin on Bolton’s claims during the Daily Show interview.

Colbert dares the Democrats to impeach Bush.




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