Friday, October 29, 2004

Oh. My. Bush. 

Do we start calling him "Dear Leader" now?

"I want you to stand, raise your right hands," and recite "the Bush Pledge," said Florida state Sen. Ken Pruitt. The assembled mass of about 2,000 in this Treasure Coast town about an hour north of West Palm Beach dutifully rose, arms aloft, and repeated after Pruitt: "I care about freedom and liberty. I care about my family. I care about my country. Because I care, I promise to work hard to re-elect, re-elect George W. Bush as president of the United States."

I know the Bush-Cheney campaign occasionally requires the people who attend its events to sign loyalty oaths, but this was the first time I have ever seen an audience actually stand and utter one. Maybe they've replaced the written oath with a verbal one.


Another Video 

Uh oh:
Arab satellite television Al Jazeera said Friday it would broadcast a video tape from al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden addressing the American people, four days before the U.S. presidential election.

It said the tape, to be aired at 2000 GMT, would discuss the reasons behind the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States that killed nearly 3,000 people and their repercussions.

I don't think much of these "videos", and especially the recent one of the "American", but a Bin Laden video before the election has gotta have some meaning. This one is definitely meant to effect the election in some way, but who's going to fall for it? These guys have more videos than MTV.

Update: I haven't seen the video, or read the transcript, but according to Drudge, Bin Laden say Bush has been "misleading America for four years..." That use of the word "misleading" sounds awfully like what Kerry has been accusing Bush of doing all along. Is it a fake video-the October Surprise?

Update II:
Ok, no doubt that the new video is real, but I'm not sure if it really will help either candidate. At first blush, i'd think it'll help Bush, but the reference to Bush continuing reading "My Pet Goat" to the students, as the Towers burned, leads me to think the opposite. Has Bin Laden seen "Fahrenheit 911 too? Ok, that just plays to the right wingers script...


NFL Picks of the Week 

Minnesota over Giants
Philadelphia over Baltimore
Green Bay over Washington
Jacksonville over Houston
Buffalo over Arizona
Detroit over Dallas
Tennessee over Cincinnati
Kansas City over Indianapolis-this is a tough one, but will go with KC with the home field advantage.Expect a shoot out.

Denver over Atlanta
Seattle over Carolina
New England over Pittsburgh (could be upset here though)
San Diego over Oakland
San Francisco over Chicago
N.Y. Jets over Miami



Boston star Curt Schilling has announced he's backing out of an appearance with Flightsuit Boy in New Hampshire. I guess the camera loving Schilling realized that he pitches in Boston, home of legions of Democrats, and of course, Kerry, and now may not be the right time to thumb his nose at his fans.

In other New Hampshire news, former Republican-turned-Independent-turned-Republican Senator Bob Smith has endorsed Kerry for President. Smith, now lives in Florida.


Thursday, October 28, 2004

"Bush just wanted to take out Castro." 

Very interesting, but scary reading over at The Washington Note.
A member of the 82nd Airborne opens up to Steve Clemons, about Afghanistan, Iraq, Bush, and even what he's heard about Castro. Warning: Graphic.


Terror Encyclopedia 

From Debka:
Al Zarqawi’s work came out in print and in an electronic version. It is basically a compilation of the Tawhid and Jihad leader’s spoken and written words, with frames from the video-tapes recording his “operations.” The cover is a composite of photos of Zarqawi himself at different periods of his life. The most authentic portrays a young man dressed in festive white. It was taken from a video clip shot at his sister’s wedding in his Jordanian home town of Zarqa.

Our sources reveal that US intelligence in Iraq has finally obtained and up-to-date photo of the terrorist chief as he looks today. We have obtained this photo and publish it with this article.

The second “encyclopedia”, a 275-page volume, is the first of a series devoted to security and intelligence in the service of a terrorist organization - and structured more like an intelligence manual.

Zarqawi seems to think quite highly of himself, and may even have a little crush...


Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Sweden, Switzerland? 

From Altercation:

Bush insists to Rep. Tom Lantos, at an Oval Office meeting, that Sweden doesn't have an army. "[Y]ou may have thought I said Switzerland," says Lantos. "No, no, it's Sweden that has no army," insists Bush. Silence ensues. A few weeks later, Bush runs into Lantos at a party. "You were right," he says. "Sweden does have an army."

That about says it all.


Voter suppression 

Once again, the GOP is trying to suppress the Minorityvote:
"Strange as it is to say it, we're non-partisan," Monreal said. "We don't care if the minority voter is part of the vast majority of non-whites that traditionally votes Democrat. What's important to us is that we get them to the polls bright and early on the third day of November, so that they feel like they've participated in this year's election."

Monreal said Republican volunteers will be available to drive minorities to polling places on Nov. 3.

"We'll even stay at home with them the day before, to help them prepare for the act of voting," Monreal said. "We'll engage in concentrated one-on-one tutoring the entire day, to make sure these voters focus on the important act of voting, rather than going outside, reading newspapers, or watching television."

GOTV can be funny...


Headline of the Day 

Drunk elephants kill three in India

A herd of drunk elephants trampled three people to death after guzzling local rice beer in a village in northeast India, wildlife officials said Wednesday.

A dozen elephants entered the village of Marongi in Assam state Tuesday and helped themselves to long swigs of rice beer brewing in casks outside the homes of local residents, The Australian reported.

Damn you drunk elephants!!!



Since when have we become the Soviet Union? I remember reading stories of Soviet Gulags and how Soviet citizens would be "liquidated" or just disappear, but now, apparently it's the acceptable thing for us to do.
The latest example concerns "ghost prisoners," suspects captured in Iraq and Afghanistan who are interrogated by the CIA in secret locations, sometimes outside those countries, and whose identities and locations are withheld from relatives, the International Red Cross and even Congress. For all practical purposes, they have "disappeared," like the domestic detainees of some notorious dictatorships. The first official Army investigation into the abuses at Abu Ghraib called this practice "deceptive, contrary to Army doctrine and in violation of international law." Yet, according to reporting by The Post's Dana Priest, the CIA subsequently transported as many as a dozen more "ghost detainees" out of Iraq to interrogate them in its secret prisons.


Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Slugger O' Toole 

Ladies and Gentleman, I'm proud to announce a new addition to my blog links on the left side of this page. The latest addition is Slugger O'Toole, a blog covering "various strands of political aspects of life in Northern Ireland. It brings together comment from a full range of the political spectrum, that should be of interest to the specialist and the general reader." An an Irish-American, and Grandson of an Irish Republican, the Northern Ireland political situation is near and dear to my heart. I look forward to following the latest news and happenings via Slugger, and I hope you do as well.


Monday, October 25, 2004

Damn Right 

From the NY Times:

Kerry drew cheers of delight when he said that he had asked Clinton `"if there's anything you have in common with George W. Bush? He thought for a moment and he said, 'In eight days and 12 hours, we will both be former presidents."

Great to see the Big Dog back!


Failure of Leadership 

The Wall Street Journal is now asking why we didn't take out Zarqawi when we had the chance:
As the toll of mayhem inspired by terrorist leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi mounts in Iraq, some former officials and military officers increasingly wonder whether the Bush administration made a mistake months before the start of the war by stopping the military from attacking his camp in the northeastern part of that country.

The Pentagon drew up detailed plans in June 2002, giving the administration a series of options for a military strike on the camp Mr. Zarqawi was running then in remote northeastern Iraq, according to generals who were involved directly in planning the attack and several former White House staffers. They said the camp, near the town of Khurmal, was known to contain Mr. Zarqawi and his supporters as well as al Qaeda fighters, all of whom had fled from Afghanistan. Intelligence indicated the camp was training recruits and making poisons for attacks against the West.

Senior Pentagon officials who were involved in planning the attack said that even by spring 2002 Mr. Zarqawi had been identified as a significant terrorist target, based in part on intelligence that the camp he earlier ran in Afghanistan had been attempting to make chemical weapons, and because he was known as the head of a group that was plotting, and training for, attacks against the West. He already was identified as the ringleader in several failed terrorist plots against Israeli and European targets.

To sum things up, we had the #1 Terrorist in Iraq, in our sights, but flightsuit boy failed to take him out, because of political reasons. Not only was Zarqawi a known terrorist, but he was also attempting to make chemcial weapons, to use against us and our allies, yet Bush failed to act like a leader. This is the same guy that's running for Re-Election on being a strong leader for the war on terror???


Friday, October 22, 2004

A New Low 

Just when you thought the GOP couldn't stoop any lower during this campaign season:

Former Mideast hostage Terry Anderson walked out of a debate in his state Senate campaign, angry over his opponent's use of a photo of him with an official of the Hezbollah guerrilla group.

Anderson, a Democrat, faulted a brochure from Republican Sen. Joy Padgett that says he suggested shortly after the Sept. 11 terrorism that ``America's enemies have reason to hate us.''

Anderson was chief Middle East correspondent for The Associated Press when he was kidnapped in Lebanon by Iranian-sponsored terrorists in 1985. He was freed in 1991.

At Wednesday's debate, Anderson declined to answer the first question, instead making a statement of protest and then walking out.

``The man in this picture that they use to imply that I am soft on terrorists is the secretary general of Hezbollah, the Party of God,'' Anderson said. ``He and his brothers were the ones who kidnapped me, chained me, blindfolded me and beat me. ... And my political opponent uses a picture of that interview to try to win an election.''

...Anderson said the photo was taken when he returned to Lebanon to confront his captors.

Similar events in Florida.


Picture of the Day 

Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry speaks to thousands of supporters gathered in a parking lot at the Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minnesota October 21, 2004. REUTERS/Brian Snyder


Thursday, October 21, 2004


Does his best Gerald Ford impression.

Falling off the podium is not the best way to show you're a strong leader. He's an old man now, is this the injury that leads to his downfall?



Conservatives have failed their own test of patriotism. In the end, it has been more important for them to defeat liberals than to get Iraq right. Had Democrats been running this war with the incompetence of Donald Rumsfeld & Friends, conservatives would have demanded their heads a year ago - and gotten them.


Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Faith Voting Part II 

This couldn't be said any better:

Jeanny House (Wisconsin): I'm voting for John Kerry because I'm a Christian. I know that my second cousin, George Bush, claims that he is the anointed leader of the American people and that God told him to run for office. I believe he may even believe that. I don't.

My Christian faith leads me to a concern for the poor and the marginalized, yet Bush's actions in office have repeatedly cut funding for health care, aid to failing schools, jobs programs, after school programs, Head Start, and many more services that provide real help and hope to those living in poverty. Under the Bush administration, over a million additional people have dropped below the poverty line. 1.2 million more have gone into "deep poverty," which is one-half the $18,810 for a family of four that defines "poverty."

My Christian faith leads me to a concern for the health and welfare of all of God's people, yet 45 million people in this country have no health insurance. The Bush administration, working hard to protect the interests of large, rich insurance companies, has done nothing to address the real health care crisis.

My Christian faith tells me the peacemakers are the blessed ones, yet George Bush wants to resurrect the Crusades, one of the most shameful experiences in Christian history. I fail to understand how lying to the people of the United States about any of the many justifications they have used for going to war in Iraq can be considered in any way, shape, or form a remotely Christian activity. Yes, Jesus once said, "I come not to bring peace, but a sword." He was talking about liberating his OWN people from within, not invading an oil-rich country out of purely selfish motives, then claiming it was for the liberation of others. The only true liberation comes when the oppressed claim it for themselves. This is something George Bush and his Imperialist cabal will never understand.

My Christian faith moves toward greater inclusiveness and acceptance, George Bush moves toward punishment, division, and exclusion. My Christian faith seeks to bring people into the circle of decision-making, George Bush seeks to keep them out. My Christian faith seeks to afford equal rights and responsibilities to all, George Bush seeks to reserve more rights for the privileged few.

My Christian faith is not looking for a new Messiah named George Bush.

I am, however, looking for a leader. I believe that leader's name is John Kerry


Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Cheney uses Nuke Threat 

It's a good thing he has an undisclosed location to hide in.

"He has the audacity to question whether a decorated combat veteran who has bled on the battlefield is tough and aggressive enough to keep America safe," said Mark Kitchens, Kerry campaign national security spokesman. "He wants to scare Americans about a possible nuclear 9/11 while the Bush administration has been on the sidelines while the nuclear threats from North Korea and Iran - the word's leading sponsor of terrorism - have increased."

And Kerry is the one using scare tactics?


Voting Catholics 

This drives me nuts. The whole GOP Catholic outreach (which a friend of mine runs) is ridiculous. I saw a group, claiming to be nonpartisan, encouraging voters to remember to vote for the candidate who is Pro-Life (Is someone who supports the Death Penalty and War, "Pro-Life"?), obviously meaning Flightsuit Boy. In what could be the most important election we've ever had, how can anyone vote for someone strictly on the abortion issue? For god sakes, there's a war on that is going rather badly now, and some people are more concerned over who is Pro Life/Pro Choice?

And the idiot lawyer who is trying to excommunicate Kerry for being Pro Choice, he seems to have forgotten some Pro Choice Republicans to put on that list, Schwarzenegger, Giuliani, Pataki, etc.. Instead, he puts Senator Olympia Snowe(R-MA) to pretend that the list is nonpartisan.

I'm a Catholic voter and voting for Kerry. Please god, get rid of Bush, so the rest of the hypocrits will start going after each other.



Kerry up slightly in Ohio.

Results released today from the latest University of Cincinnati Ohio Poll show the presidential race is a statistical dead heat in the state. 48 percent of likely voters questioned voiced support for Senator John Kerry; 46% for President George Bush; and 6% were undecided or favored another candidate


The Flu 

The flu has cost many people from doing their job, but will the flu cost President Bush from keeping his?

"I know there are some here who are worried about the flu season," Bush told supporters in a stadium at a baseball training camp. "I want to assure them that our government is doing everything possible to help older Americans and children get their shots despite the major manufacturing defect that caused this problem."

British regulators recently shut down shipments from Chiron Corp., cutting the U.S. supply of flu shots almost in half. Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry said the Bush administration was warned about the shortage of flu vaccines three years ago and didn't act.

The flu vaccine disaster could be one of those surprise campaign issues that changes the face of the election. I don't see a major shift in votes because of it, but perhaps enough of those supposed "Security Moms" feel that if the President can't protect their kids from the flu, how can he protect them from bioterror/dirty bombs?


Monday, October 18, 2004

Zarqawi Endorses Bin Laden  

And thinks Bin Laden is the "best leader for Islam". Zarqawi is also now officially a member of Al Qaeda.
The statement ran a Quranic verse encouraging Muslim unity and said al-Zarqawi considered bin Laden “the best leader for Islam’s armies against all infidels and apostates.”

Bush Administration responds:
“But we’ve always said there were ties between Zarqawi and al-Qaida, which underscores once again why Iraq is the central front in the war on terror,” White House spokesman Trent Duffy said in Washington. “It’s also proof positive of why the president’s firm resolve to fight terrorists overseas so we don’t face them in America’s neighborhoods is the only clear way to prevail.”

Polls have the race close, with Bin Laden leading the Popular Vote, and his view of the Middle East getting more attention than Bush's.


Sunday, October 17, 2004

Lewis Black 

Last night I got to see Comedian Lewis Black, on his "Rules of Engragement" tour, at American U. Great show, he was funny as usual, with his angry, but funny rants (he's taken over for Dennis Miller as far a angry/ranting comedian). He closed with a stern reminder to get everyone to vote, but to remember to leave the voting booth "smiling, so our new Iraqi brothers can see the gift that the Americans have brought them. Since, no WMD's have been found, Al Qaeda/Saddam weren't working together, we're now there 'to bring them democracy'. And the best thing, we're forcing Democracy on them, but only 45% of us vote, so they don't really have to that either."

So, don't forget to smile.



Revenge is sweet. Bring on the Browns!


Saturday, October 16, 2004

Stewart on Crossfire 

Wow, Jon Stewart really gives it to Tucker on "Crossfire". Stewart's main point is: Why is CNN, and other news organizations turning into partisan hacks and not a news service that is supposed to do their job. Tucker seems to think "The Daily Show" is acutally a news show and not a comedy show. The transcript is well worth the read. Here's a sample:

STEWART: So I don't worry about it in that respect.

But let me ask you guys, again, a question, because we talked a little bit about, you're actually doing honest debate and all that. But, after the debates, where do you guys head to right afterwards?

CARLSON: The men's room.

STEWART: Right after that?


STEWART: Spin alley.


STEWART: No, spin alley.

BEGALA: What are you talking about? You mean at these debates?

STEWART: Yes. You go to spin alley, the place called spin alley. Now, don't you think that, for people watching at home, that's kind of a drag, that you're literally walking to a place called deception lane?


STEWART: Like, it's spin alley. It's -- don't you see, that's the issue I'm trying to talk to you guys...

BEGALA: No, I actually believe -- I have a lot of friends who work for President Bush. I went to college with some of them.

CARLSON: Neither of us was ever in the spin room, actually.


BEGALA: No, I did -- I went to do the Larry King show.

They actually believe what they're saying. They want to persuade you. That's what they're trying to do by spinning. But I don't doubt for a minute these people who work for President Bush, who I disagree with on everything, they believe that stuff, Jon. This is not a lie or a deception at all. They believe in him, just like I believe in my guy.


STEWART: I think they believe President Bush would do a better job.

And I believe the Kerry guys believe President Kerry would do a better job. But what I believe is, they're not making honest arguments. So what they're doing is, in their mind, the ends justify the means.


BEGALA: I don't think so at all.


CARLSON: I do think you're more fun on your show. Just my opinion.


CARLSON: OK, up next, Jon Stewart goes one on one with his fans...


STEWART: You know what's interesting, though? You're as big a dick on your show as you are on any show.


CARLSON: Now, you're getting into it. I like that.


CARLSON: OK. We'll be right back.

Video link of Stewart Vs. Crossfire



Below is the picture being used in an advertisement by the Cape May County GOP on PoliticsNJ.com. Pretty classy huh? Now we know why the GOP lost control of NJ, and may never get it back. And not to forget that Bush is the one who decided to go after Saddam, and allow the head of Al Qaeda, who has the blood of 3,000 dead Americans on his hands, to roam free.



Thursday, October 14, 2004

Third Debate  

William Saletan's take on the last night's debate: A Kerry Grand Slam. This says it all:

The closing statements confirmed the tide of the race. Kerry spoke like a man closing a deal. He recalled his service to his country, promised "tested, strong leadership that can calm the waters of the troubled world," and vowed to protect the nation in the tradition of FDR, JFK, and Reagan. Bush spoke like a man pleading for a second chance. He fumbled his opening sentence. He talked about the hard times we'd been through and the good things he'd do in a second term that he hadn't done in his first. He called for faith and optimism. Kerry ended with the words of a president: "Thank you, goodnight, and God bless the United States of America." Bush ended with a plea: "I'm asking for your vote. God bless you."

Kerry sounded like someone running for President of the United States, Bush sounded like someone running for President of St. Lawrence Elementary School.


Green Zone Attack 

Perhaps this is the worst news out of Iraq yet:

Insurgents set off explosives at an outdoor market and a cafe popular with Americans inside Baghdad’s heavily fortified Green Zone on Thursday, killing seven people, including two Americans, and wounding others, the U.S. military said. The statement revised an earlier count of eight dead.

The attack appeared to be the first time insurgents have successfully infiltrated and set off bombs in the heart of the U.S.-Iraqi leadership of the country. The U.S. military said the bombs appeared to have been “hand-carried” into the zone — raising fears over security in the compound, where the U.S. Embassy and Iraqi government offices are located.

The Green Zone is supposed to be the one place where our troops and the Iraqi Government are supposed to be safe. Now, no place in Iraq is safe. Like in Vietnam, where some Vietcong were our friends by day, but enemies at night, every Iraqi inside is a suspect and will be treated differently than before. Things just got substantially worse.



Tom Friedman hits the nail right on the head here:
That's why Mr. Kerry was actually touching something many Americans are worried about - that this war on terrorism is transforming us and our society, when it was supposed to be about uprooting the terrorists and transforming their societies.

The Bush team's responses to Mr. Kerry's musings are revealing because they go to the very heart of how much this administration has become addicted to 9/11. The president has exploited the terrorism issue for political ends - trying to make it into another wedge issue like abortion, guns or gay rights - to rally the Republican base and push his own political agenda. But it is precisely this exploitation of 9/11 that has gotten him and the country off-track, because it has not only created a wedge between Republicans and Democrats, it's also created a wedge between America and the rest of the world, between America and its own historical identity, and between the president and common sense.



When Cheney Attacks 

Now, this threat should be taken seriously:

GREENSBORO, NC--In an announcement that has alarmed voters across the nation, Vice President Dick Cheney said Monday that he will personally attack the U.S. if Sen. John Kerry wins the next election.

"If the wrong man is elected in November, the nation will come under a devastating armed attack of an unimaginable magnitude, one planned and executed by none other than myself," Cheney said, speaking at a rally in Greensboro, NC. "When they go to the polls, Americans must weigh this fact and decide if our nation can ignore such a grave threat."

Added Cheney: "It would be a tragedy to suffer another attack on American soil, let alone one perpetrated by an enemy as well-organized and well-equipped as I am. My colleagues and I urge voters to keep their safety in mind when they go to the polls."


Wednesday, October 13, 2004

GOP Hates Superman 

Why am I not surprised about this?

L.A. Weekly has learned that, just a day after the actor’s death, one or more Republican senator put a surprise hold on the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Act. The uncontroversial legislation had been expected to sail through committee and then the Senate as easily as it had the House of Representatives where it passed 418 to zero last week. Monday’s action was beyond cruel; it was like opposing Mom and apple pie...

While the rest of the world was mourning Reeve’s tragic death and celebrating his heroic life, on Monday the Republicans cravenly played politics with the actor’s legislation by holding up the bill inside the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions — whose GOP members include chairman Judd Gregg (R–New Hampshire), who is running for reelection, and Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tennessee), a heart surgeon. Last July, Reeve’s wife, Dana, made a point of traveling to Senator Gregg’s backyard and meeting with the local media in an apparent attempt to keep the pressure on Gregg to move Reeve’s bill through his committee. She told the Portsmouth Herald, "There are no dollars attached to it, and it is just a real ‘feel good’ piece of legislation. How could you not support it?"

But Senate Republicans found a way.

Reeve’s S. 1010 is identical to the already passed HR 1998, aimed at enhancing and furthering research into paralysis and improving rehabilitation and quality of life for those with spinal-cord injuries. But one or more Senate GOPers made it a casualty of George W. Bush’s mission to confine stem-cell research to a paltry few and inadequate lines despite the fact that Reeve’s legislation had nothing to do with that issue. That’s worth repeating: The thespian’s bill had nothing to do with stem-cell research. Not only did the legislation have bipartisan co-sponsorship, Reeve’s foundation cited the support of Bush cabinet member Tommy Thompson, the Health and Human Services secretary.

But one or more Republican senators decided to piss on Reeve’s grave because the dead actor had dared speak out in support of opening up stem-cell research, which Dubya opposes in lockstep with his conservative Christian masters. As someone else with a conscience said to a cruel and reckless U.S. senator half a century ago, "Have you no sense of decency, sir?"

I'm in no way advocating a Dictatorship or Monarchy, but the problem in our Democracy is that at least 1 out of every 4 years, nothing gets done, specifically because of the upcoming Presidential Election. Everyone (in this case the GOP), has to listen to their polling and is too afraid to piss of their base of support. This Bill has nothing to do with Stem Cells, but the late Christopher Reeve will be punished for his support for it. Who's next on the list to be punished, Michael J. Fox? (However, Alex P. Keaton was a Reaganite)


Fallujan Infighting? 

From Iraq'd:

Karl Vick of The Washington Post has an excellent article today detailing emerging splits in Falluja between local insurgents and foreign terrorists. Fallujan leaders, in negotiations with the Allawi government and the U.S. to avoid a fresh attack on the city, took the step of voting 10-2 on the mujahideen council to effectively expel the foreigners (though the order appears to have been ignored). There are two reasons for the split, Vick reports: Fallujans have been subjected to weeks of U.S. air strikes that have killed dozens of civilians and don't want an all-out offensive, and they blame the Zarqawi network and other foreigners for bringing ruin to the city; and they're disgusted by the "stern brand of Islam" that the foreigners have imported--which violates "customs rooted in the town's more mystical religious tradition"--and the violence they use to enforce compliance. If the split is about something as fundamental as religion and local custom, expect it to deepen

Let them fight each other first, then we can finish the job that should have been done several months ago.



In today's The Hill, there's an interview with University of Wisconsin Chancellor John D. Wiley, where he makes the following statement:

Q:Is your university a Kerry bastion?

Wiley: There's no good way to know, but I think the general perception is 2/3 to ¾ Democrat. But we have a fairly strong Republican club on campus, that might disagree. One thing I'd point out is that students in general are probably not getting included in Kerry-Bush polls because they have cell phones. So I think we might be in for a surprise, a Truman-Dewey headline, because people who haven't voted before and have been inaccessible to the pollsters may show up.

That's an interesting point Wiley brings up-cell phone users don't get polling phone calls. This day in age, so many people use cell phones exclusively (I do), and because of it, their voting opinions aren't recorded. Wiley also mentions the Truman-Dewey race. In that race, Dewey was ahead in the polls for most of the campaign, and when he lost, people were stunned. I've heard theories that some people thought they'd vote for Dewey up until it was time to pull the lever, then they realized what they were doing, and went with Truman. I think we will see a lot of that this year, Bush voters who change their minds at the last minute.

Chancellor Wiley also said on his campus there are 4,000 new voters. That's a lot. Take a look around the country at how many new voters there, and we just may have a President Kerry.


Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Body Counts 

Uh oh is right:

Seymour Hersh spoke at Berkeley last Friday, October 8th. He told a story about recently receiving a call from an American lieutenant in Iraq who'd just witnessed other American soldiers massacring Iraqis.

HERSH: I got a call last week from a soldier -- it's different now, a lot of communication, 800 numbers. He's an American officer and he was in a unit halfway between Baghdad and the Syrian border. It's a place where we claim we've done great work at cleaning out the insurgency. He was a platoon commander. First lieutenant, ROTC guy.

It was a call about this. He had been bivouacing outside of town with his platoon. It was near, it was an agricultural area, and there was a granary around. And the guys that owned the granary, the Iraqis that owned the granary... It was an area that the insurgency had some control, but it was very quiet, it was not Fallujah. It was a town that was off the mainstream. Not much violence there. And his guys, the guys that owned the granary, had hired, my guess is from his language, I wasn't explicit -- we're talking not more than three dozen, thirty or so guards. Any kind of work people were dying to do. So Iraqis were guarding the granary. His troops were bivouaced, they were stationed there, they got to know everybody...

They were a couple weeks together, they knew each other. So orders came down from the generals in Baghdad, we want to clear the village, like in Samarra. And as he told the story, another platoon from his company came and executed all the guards, as his people were screaming, stop. And he said they just shot them one by one. He went nuts, and his soldiers went nuts. And he's hysterical. He's totally hysterical. And he went to the captain. He was a lieutenant, he went to the company captain. And the company captain said, "No, you don't understand. That's a kill. We got thirty-six insurgents."
You read those stories where the Americans, we take a city, we had a combat, a hundred and fifteen insurgents are killed. You read those stories. It's shades of Vietnam again, folks, body counts...

You know what I told him? I said, fella, I said: you've complained to the captain. He knows you think they committed murder. Your troops know their fellow soldiers committed murder. Shut up. Just shut up. Get through your tour and just shut up. You're going to get a bullet in the back. You don't need that. And that's where we are with this war.

If this is true, we're even more f'd then we think.



I can't wait to hear this.

LOS ANGELES, California (AP) -- If Brian Wilson could change just one thing in life, it wouldn't be the legendary emotional traumas, the insecurities, the drug abuse, the battles with weight or the endless legal conflicts that nearly destroyed him.

"I would have made the rhythm of 'California Girls' a little better," Wilson deadpans. "That," he adds with the slightest of smiles, "is my only regret.

Were Wilson not shy and extremely modest by nature, he'd probably be wearing a bigger smile these days. The genius who was the guiding force behind the Beach Boys -- at a time when the group mattered to music as much as the Beatles -- is back in all his creative glory.

The proof is "Smile," a 47-minute rock opera in three movements that, when the composer first envisioned it in 1966, was to have been a "teenage symphony to God."

It's a shame Brian Wilson went nuts in the 60's when the Beach Boys were on top, and not the group of replacements that tour casinos today. Unfortunately most people of my generation probably know the Beach Boys as the group who sing "Kokomo", and not "Don't Worry Baby" or "Good Vibrations".


Friday, October 08, 2004

School Threat Myth 

From CNN.com

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The U.S. military in Iraq has discovered two computer disks containing photographs, layouts and other material pertaining to American schools in six states, U.S. government officials said.

The FBI is examining the materials, but a Department of Homeland Security official said the intelligence community determined there was no threat.

The military retrieved the disks in Iraq within the last couple of months, and they were turned over to the FBI, one official said Thursday.

"There is no threat associated with this," another government official said.

The schools are in Fort Myers, Florida; Salem, Oregon; Jones County, Georgia; New Jersey; Michigan; and California.

The Department of Homeland Security official said the material was associated with a person in Iraq, and it could not be established that this person had any ties to terrorism. He did have a connection to civic groups doing planning for schools in Iraq, the official said.

Officials said that they are taking the matter seriously though there has been no specific threat related to the recovered material.

Law Enforcement should obviously look into this person, but it sounds like he could be interested in building schools in Iraq, and not trying to destroy schools in the US?

As Kerry gains in the polls, the alleged threats get more desperate.


Election Day Threat 

With all the Bush Administration talk about a possible Pre-Election or Election Day terror attack, and how some are fearing an "October Surprise" attack that could keep Bush in office another 4 years, has anyone thought the opposite? After all of the warnings, wouldn't an Election Eve attack just show that the Bush Administration failed to protect us from an attack that they knew could be coming? It would demonstrate how little has changed under their watch. I'm not sure I really trust the typical voter to come up with that, but when I see how people reacted to Bush's poor 1st debate performance, I am encouraged.


Thursday, October 07, 2004

The Airport Parking Lot National Guard 

Thanks to a few well armed citizens, people will soon be able to carry guns and other dangerous weapons on the grounds and parking lots of Reagan National and Dulles International airports.

Without debate, the board of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority unanimously agreed to permit passengers and other airport visitors to carry guns, knives and other weapons as long as they keep them out of terminals and other buildings that access airfields. Passengers who are taking guns with them on flights still will be allowed to carry them into the terminal but are supposed to make arrangements with airlines in advance, officials said.

The action comes after pressure from an increasingly high-profile Virginia gun rights group whose members have taken to wearing firearms on their hips in public places to make their case

Thank god, now if one of those Arab terrorist bastards tries to come to America, we'll have a well-armed militia roaming the airport parking lots to capture or kill them.

(sarcasm folks)


E. Howard Hunt 

Slate has an interview with former CIA-Watergate figure E. Howard Hunt, who was involved in most of the major CIA events in the 50's-60's, including the Guatemala Coup, Bay of Pigs and the Hunting of Che Guevera. An interesting thing happens when the discussion turns to the JFK assassination

Slate: I know there is a conspiracy theory saying that David Atlee Phillips—the Miami CIA station chief—was involved with the assassination of JFK.

Hunt: [Visibly uncomfortable] I have no comment.

Slate: I know you hired him early on, to work with you in Mexico, to help with Guatemala propaganda.

Hunt: He was one of the best briefers I ever saw.

Slate: And there were even conspiracy theories about you being in Dallas the day JFK was killed.

Hunt: No comment.

Laura Hunt: Howard says he wasn't, and I believe him.

That's hardly a denial that he was in Dallas that day. In fact, could Hunt have been one of the three well-dressed tramps pulled off a train that day? More specifically, the third one? We know he was angry with the Kennedy Administration for botching the Bay of Pigs, and obviously, Hunt was involved with the Cuban Exiles.

Someone call Oliver Stone...


Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Saddam and 9/11 


Debate Talk 

I think both Cheney and Edwards did well, but Dick has already been caught in some lies. Edwards looked good, and hammered home the points he had to: No link between Saddam and 9/11, Kerry can be a strong leader, No solid plan in Iraq, etc. That's what he had to do. The Human Computer..er.. Cheney, perhaps, sounded smarter, but his substance was weak.

My opinion is everyone has made up their mind of Cheney, they love or hate him, not much flexibility there. Edwards may be slightly more of an "unknown", but had to just not screw up, and solidify Kerry's position, which he did.

Check out Josh Marshall's take on last night, which I feel is right on.

Update William Saletan, a self-described Republican Kerry supporter thinks Edwards destroyed Cheney:
If you watched this debate as an uninformed voter, you heard an avalanche of reasons to vote for Kerry. You heard 23 times that Kerry has a "plan" for some big problem or that Bush doesn't. You heard 10 references to Halliburton, with multiple allegations of bribes, no-bid contracts, and overcharges. You heard 13 associations of Bush with drug or insurance companies. You heard four attacks on him for outsourcing. You heard again and again that he opposed the 9/11 commission and the Department of Homeland Security, that he "diverted" resources from the fight against al-Qaida to the invasion of Iraq, and that while our troops "were on the ground fighting, [the administration] lobbied the Congress to cut their combat pay." You heard that Kerry served in Vietnam and would "double the special forces." You heard that Bush is coddling the Saudis, that Cheney "cut over 80 weapons systems," and that the administration has no air-cargo screening or unified terrorist watch list.


Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Mobsters for Bush 

The results are in:

According to a new Fairleigh Dickinson University poll released today. 37% think the fictional alleged waste management executive would be for Bush, while 26% believe he would vote for John Kerry. James Gandolfini, the New Jersey actor who plays Soprano, is a Kerry backer.

No word on who Carmella would vote for.

By the way, in important polling news, Kerry is up by 8 in New Jersey. Everyone can breath easier now.


Monday, October 04, 2004

Bush's Cheatsheet 

Sorry about the lack of recent posts. I was home in NJ attending a funeral, and I decided to take a brief hiatus from posting. Now, without further adieu:

FPN was able to peek at the cheatsheet Bush used during the debate, and it's contents are not too surprising:

(Picture via Fark)


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