Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Stubborn Protesters Attempt Port Blockade

Protesters in Olympia Washington have been battling with Police who have been using Pepper Spray in an attempt to disperse them. The demonstrators have been attempting to stop the shipment of Styker Armored Vehicles from being shipped to Iraq. At least 22 have been arrested in Protests that began Monday night and continued into at least Wednesday morning.

The Seattle Times had this to say:

OLYMPIA – Dozens of people protesting Iraq-bound military shipments were blasted with pepper spray and 22 people were arrested in continuing war protests at the Port of Olympia.

The Olympia Movement for Justice and Peace has a website that said this:

Olympia Resists Port Militarization On Monday, May 22, the US Army began a massive transport of Stryker vehicles and other war equipment to the Port of Olympia for shipment to Iraq, in advance of the re-deployment to Iraq of the Styker 3rd Brigade. 2006: Olympia Resists Militarization of Our Port We have opposed militarization of our port for two years by direct appeal to the Port Commission and City Council; by writing articles, Op-Eds and letters to the editor; and by holding educational forums, vigils and marches. Our elected officials are not listening. "The weapons shipments, and the use of our public property to prolong and supply the war in Iraq have made us complicit in crimes against humanity. We refuse to be complicit any longer. We will continue to utilize every available instrument of democracy, including direct action and disruption when necessary."--OMJP Press Release, 25 May 2006.

I would like to laud their efforts in the struggle to stand in the way of war and urge everyone to send them words of encouragement.

Contacts The Olympia Movement for Justice & Peace Olympia, WA 360-867-6513

Above: A police escort of Stryker Armored Vehicles is stranded by continuing protests.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

New Iraq Ambassador Has Startling Revelation

Sumaidaie: Marines shot my cousin
We must 'remove the bad apples,' new Iraqi ambassador says

Tuesday, May 30, 2006; Posted: 9:08 p.m. EDT (01:08 GMT)

SUMAIDAIE: Well, that was not a battle at all. Marines were doing house-to-house searches, and they went into the house of my cousin. He opened the door for them.
His mother, his siblings were there. He led them into the bedroom of his father. And there he was shot.
BLITZER: Who shot him?
SUMAIDAIE: A member of the Marines.

CNN Story

Thanks to Americablog for this link.

Haditha Massacre

I drive for a living. I listen to NPR from 6AM to 8AM and then I listen to Democracy Now! By 9AM I am ready to turn the radio off for a while. At noon I listen to the Marc Steiner Show on WYPR which used to be WJHU until John’s Hopkins lost interest in it. Marc Steiner is extremely well read and came out of the Civil Rights Movement. He was “merely” the daily talk show host of his own show two hours a day before Hopkins decided to dump the station. He is the main reason the station survived and is thriving. He is the only radio talk show host I respect and you can listen to at least some of his shows here.

I mention all this because I have become very skeptical of NPR. They seem to bend over backwards to get out the Heritage Foundation’s views on every topic from Abortion to Torture. It irritates me. And although Marc has their mouth pieces on as well he goes way deeper into stories especially about Iraq and Palestine and Israel. No need to point out he is Jewish. You can tell by his name. He refuses to take sides and refuses to let things devolve into shouting matches. He is well respected and loved in Baltimore.

This morning I was listening to NPR interview reporters about the Haditha Massacre and the reporters were asked how the Iraqi’s felt about this. They all responded that they took it with a grain of salt because there is so much violence going on in Iraq that it is just one more incident. They said it is a much bigger story over here. I thought, yeah more Corporate Media spin.

I listened to Amy Goodman on Democracy Now! ask independent reporters in Iraq the same question and she got the same answer with the addition that there is some anger and that people are still upset about what happened in Falluja. Basically people are seeing horror upon horror every day and the deaths of twenty five innocent civilians is just a continuation of what has been going on every day.

Marc Steiner had a show about Iraq and Afghanistan today and all the reporters said the same things, more or less.

Iraq has been averaging 38 civilian murders a day since January 1, 2006. Executions, beheadings and whatever.

It is astounding that George W. Bush’s adventurism in Iraq has turned out so horribly that US Marines could go into a few homes and shoot 25 people from the ages of two months old to seventy six years old and the people in Iraq can barely react to it because of all the other horrible things that our invasion of the country has wrought.

People here are hardly reacting to any of it. It is just wave upon wave of atrocity after atrocity. From the torture we are committing right now to the domestic spying we are doing right now to the killing we are doing right now to as of today the escalation of the number of troops in Iraq. Another 1500 sent in from Kuwait. Not enough to make a difference. Just enough to enrich the target environment for all the people in Iraq we have taught to hate us.

New Commenting Tool Added

Nate has upgraded the commenting system so people don't have to sign in every time we post a comment. I am very happy about this unfortunetly we have lost the previous comments, at least for the moment.

I have not had a chance to talk to Nate yet but if we can recover and repost the comments we will.

I love everyone's comments and urge you to yell and scream on our blog all you want. Compliments are even more welcome.

Thank you,


Monday, May 29, 2006

Sometimes I write some of my better posts when I am furious. John Doe was commenting on Crooks and Liars today and fired this off. We tend, sometimes to forget all the strange things surrounding 9/11. There was just so much! But I will let John Doe's words speak for themselves. I post this with his permission.

I edited this for a few spelling errors.


You know what changed on 9/11? We ceased to be a nation of laws and became a dictatorship governed by a criminal racketeering enterprise hellbent on political expediency.Think about it. The worst crimes ever inflicted on American soil in an American city on American civilians in the history of the US and there was NO CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION. All we got was a serendipitous story and summary judgment and a lapdog press tripping over itself to print the legend. Never mind that the government's story is totally full of holes. Never mind that the government obstructed full Congressional investigations, criminal investigations and intimidated the Joint Intelligence Committee. Never mind that there wasn't a single subpoena for information that the government refused to provide to the People. Never mind that massive amounts of criminal evidence was destroyed. Never mind that witnesses were gagged. Never mind that to this day the government has refused to explain why 5 of the alleged hijackers were enrolled at secure US military training installations. Never mind why the government has refused to explain there were 5 war games occurring simultaneous to the attacks. Never mind that the government has not complied with FOIA requests. Just blindly believe the bullshit that they tell you. Kill for the bullshit that they tell you. Hate for the bullshit that they tell you. Trash your cherished liberties for the bullshit that they tell you.What changed on 9/11? Perhaps nothing changed. Perhaps it was just a wake up call to the cowardice and stupidity of America. They still can't talk about anything without predicating it on the bullshit that the government told you. That's how hopelessly brainwashed, worthless and weak America is. Morons with big guns.

John Doe 05.29.06 - 8:19 pm #

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Strange String of Events

Some seemingly connected and seemingly not connected events occurred this week that have me puzzled.

I may not be aware of all of the events so if anyone has any further information please leave a comment and I will add it to this post.

William Jefferson’s house and Congressional Office were raided by the FBI. We have been told that they found ninety thousand dollars in his freezer inside some frozen vegetable boxes. We do not know what was removed from his office.

Following the raid of his office several members of Congress including Dennis Hastert, the Speaker of the House voiced strong objections to the Executive Branch doing searches of Congressional Offices because it is a violation of the Separation of Powers.

The next day ABC says they have been told by unknown sources that Dennis Hastert is being investigated. Hastert claims their “source” is the Department of Justice.

Without explanation George W. Bush seals the records on the files seized in Jefferson’s office for forty five days.

Alone these events are curious enough.

On Friday “someone” says they may have heard gunshots in the Rayburn Congressional Office Building’s parking garage. The Capital Police shut down the entire building for five hours and told everyone in the building to lock themselves in their offices while they conducted a search. I have been in that building. The doors are solid wood. Who is doing what on the other side of those doors is impossible to see or hear. It is also known that not all members of Congress or their staff members were in their offices at the time.

I don’t believe in coincidences. Something is going on. I just do not know what.

Just after posting this i found this little gem.

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department signaled to the White House this week that the nation's top three law-enforcement officials would resign or face firing rather than return documents seized from a Democratic congressman's office in a bribery investigation, administration sources familiar with the discussions said.
The possibility of resignations by Attorney General Alberto Gonzales; his deputy, Paul McNulty; and FBI Director Robert Mueller was communicated to the White House by several Justice officials in tense negotiations over the fate of the materials taken from Rep. William Jefferson's office, said the sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Washington Post

Ok, now i get it. The shutdown and sweep of the office building may very well have been exactly what it seemed to be.

After talking to a friend tonight and I have more information. It seems Hastert put his foot down and told Bush if the records were not returned Hastert would lead the charge in Congress to oppose the Administration at every turn. Bush froze the records for 45 days to try to come up with a solution. This does not sit well with Gonzales and he is threatening to resign.

Like my buddy Nate says, things are unravelling for Bush much like they were for Nixon just before he resigned. There is a growing undercurrent of disastisfaction with the President among some very strong Republicans. How much longer Karl Rove can keep his finger in the levie before the tide washes this group right out of D.C. only time will tell.

Friday, May 26, 2006

I live in a Dictatorship

Not much has changed, really. I still have no one in Congress who knows my name or cares about what I need. I still work hard and can not get ahead. I still do not have health insurance. I still fear living on the streets.

I do not know which country we will invade next, even though I can guess. The media is still lying to me. The President is still lying to me. I am still being told to buy the “right” clothes, the “right” deodorant, and the “right” car.

I am still being told who to associate myself with. I am told who to hate and who to love.

My vote still counts just as much.

I am judged by what I wear, how I cut my hair and who I spend time with.

I am still in debt. I still pay car insurance. I still pay for every mistake I ever made.

My country still kills people in my name. It still does what it wants with or without my approval. It never asks me what I think. It does not care.

Not much has changed.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Manifesto Part II

As promised I am adding to my "Manifesto."

We need a total overhaul of the Prison System.

  • We need to eliminate the punitive nature of incarceration. We punish children to make them see the error of their mistakes. We punish adults to exact revenge. Politicians use the motive of revenge to gain political power and to keep the population under control.

  • We need to end the privatization of prisons. When a corporation’s bottom line is based on how many prisoners they have and how long they remain behind bars justice is not served, it is perverted. A prisoner’s time can be extended if he gets in trouble in prison. There have been accusations that guards encourage certain behavior that can lead to fights and indeed there is at least one case where racial animosity was exacerbated.

  • We need to end the use of prisoners in all institutions for the purpose of generating a profit. Telemarketing, the making of clothing for a few dollars a day in no way encourages the elimination of prisons as a solution for our social ills. Who needs slaves? We have Neo Slaves and society is loath to support them.

  • We need an entirely new approach to the concept of rehabilitation. Counseling, job training and mental health care are a must. The total elimination of sexual threat and abuse of all prisoners must be a top priority.

  • Prolonged isolation must be eliminated. This does more to damage a person’s mental stability than even most severe acts of violence.
    Each prison should have a functioning grievance process accessible to all prisoners and conflict resolution professionals should be present in all prisons at least forty hours a week.

    This could and should be expanded on but my knowledge on this subject is somewhat limited. Please come up with more ideas with me.

    We have 2.2 million people in jail in this country who are being abused and deprived. Some are being tortured. This needs to end.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


  • The left is often blamed for not having a plan of its own. Sure we can criticize but do we have any ideas? Well here are mine.

    We need a total overhaul of the electoral process.

  • We need to eliminate Electoral Votes. This system has emasculated our campaign process by eliminating states such as Maryland from being visited by candidates running for President. Maryland votes Democrat so the Electoral Votes go to the Democratic candidate. So if this coming election Ohio and Pennsylvania are the swing states then the issues deemed important to voters in these two states will be the issues talked about by the campaigns at large. Issues Marylanders are concerned about are ignored. The votes Republicans cast in Maryland for the President are a waste of time and gasoline. Every vote should count because it would enfranchise us all into the process.

  • We need to eliminate all Diebold machines and bar this company from manufacturing anything for any state government or local government as well as the Federal Government ever again. We need hand countable paper ballots. We can have computer screens to make things easier for the voters but we need a secondary parallel counting system to verify the results of all elections.

  • We need public financing of all elections. We need to eliminate all contributions by any individual or any corporation or group of over one hundred dollars. No money what so ever should be allowed to be spent on television or radio advertising. Instead, since the public owns the airwaves each network should be obligated by law to hold debates between candidates in prime time during the campaign process. Local television stations should be obligated to cover local candidates. Federal and local funds should be used to compensate these broadcasters for their programming preemption.

  • We need more Congress people. We need one congress person for each and every zip code in the country. This would kill two birds with one stone. It would make each member of the house more accountable to his or her constituents while truly giving them a voice and it would eliminate the gerrymandering of voting districts. Obviously with this law we would also need to freeze existing zip codes to eliminate any further manipulation.

  • We need more Senators. Each state should have one Senator for every ten million residents rounded up.

  • We need to eliminate paid Lobbyists.

    We need a total overhaul of the Defense Department

  • We need to eliminate the defense industry. The Federal Government needs to develop and manufacture its own weapons and weapons systems. This would not eliminate jobs but it would eliminate corruption through bribes and sleazy lobbyists.

  • We need to eliminate the use of mercenaries at every level of the Department of Defense.

  • We need to eliminate the use of outside contractors to provide everything from building military installations to feeding our troops.

  • We need to rein in the Department of Defense’s burgeoning intelligence gathering activities.

  • We need to keep all soldiers and National Guard members off the streets of the United States at all times except in times of crisis. Demonstrations and illegal immigrants do not constitute a crisis.

    There are more things we need to do to get back to democracy and go forward to a safe, happy and healthy country that looks out for its people and does not trample on the rights of the rest of the planet.

    I will be continuing to add to this “Manifesto.” Please join me by commenting.

Monday, May 22, 2006

So Divine

Six Thousand years ago when George’s (Great) 72 Grandfather created the Universe he looked forward to the day when one of his direct descendants would come to know Him and believe in Him. Of course, being all knowing, he knew exactly when this would happen.

He decided to send forth a prophet at the appropriate time to reach his most faithful and believing offspring who He knew would become the President of the United States by hook or by crook.

The Prophet Siegfried was sent by Him to write his book, My Pet Goat. In the divine nature of things George heard this glorious book for the first time coming from the mouths of babes as the most powerful country on earth, which he was about to take full control of, was attacked.

The book and its teachings mesmerized him. It inspired him. It made him take flight.

It was not until the danger had passed that his Arch Angels cleverly disguised as Secret Service Agents would allow him to touch down. During the flight George the Usurper had his first real epiphany. “I am all powerful!”

Upon landing and surrounded by angels with automatic swords, George took center stage and told everyone to be afraid but to please keep on shopping. He was speaking in tongues as the old traditions that were now flooding his mind had taught him.

In his new found glory he decided to ask The Hillary to stand with him and extend the national treasures to the airline industries that were dropping like flies even without the help of hijackers. George knew now that she had been inspired by My Pet Giraffe and was a heretic but a world without airplanes, George felt, would be difficult to get around in.

He then went on a pilgrimage. He started on the rubble in ground zero. He raised his horn but the walls had already come a tumbling down. So he went to the National Cathedral proclaiming his faith in faith. On he went to an Address to the Nation to proclaim for all to hear that he was all knowing and that he could find men in caves. Then he went to Crawford and burned some bushes. But they did not speak.

He was confused.

It seems the Creator had left him on his own. Having waited and waited all that time for the pinnacle of His plan to have My Pet Goat read at just the appropriate moment to just the appropriate person the Creator had decided to go out for a drink. He had decided after the first drink that there would be many more. Don’t worry, someone is looking into it.

Left on his own George decided to pray. When no one answered he realized he was praying to himself because after all he was the chosen one. So he started talking to himself. That is why George is loath to allow filters. He is getting the straight dope and from someone who has done a lot of it.

So the next time you decide to criticize George consider this: You are going straight to hell.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

A Message from George W. Bush

I have agreed to write something for this site so I can set the record straight about a lot of misconceptions the “blogisphere” seems to have about my Presidency. First of all that photograph of me extending my middle finger just before going on the air to address the public has been misinterpreted. That is my signal to Turd Blossom that I have memorized all the talking points and even if I butcher the English Language (which will soon become the only language America will ever need) all the code words will be covered. Secondly, I would like to address the fundamental issue of fairness. If you examine closely all the talk shows on Fox, ABC, CNN, NBC and CBS you will notice that the four major opinion shapers are represented. The Heritage Foundation, The Cato Institute, The American Enterprise Institute and The Rand Corporation are all there. They are almost absent in your blogs. Where is the fairness in this? I feel you are misrepresenting the ideas that made this country what it is today [editor’s note: A failed democracy transitioning through plutocracy on its way toward theocratic fascism].

I want to turn now to my tax cuts. As some of you may know the price of gas has gone up. Now if you are an average American you may have felt the need to pawn some of your possessions to buy a tank of gas. This has had a devastating impact on the Pawn industry. Their shops have become flooded with items that people can no longer afford. An overstocked Pawn industry is not good for America. Tax cuts will ease this problem by insuring that all Americans will get a tax break equal to one and possibly two tanks of gas. This will reduce the burden in Pawn Shops across the country.

As you know if you pay more taxes you will get a larger tax break. This is only fair. For instance, studies show that higher income earners drive bigger vehicles and therefore require more gas. See the beauty of my program?

Now I have sadly read many derogatory remarks about the ongoing fight against terrorism in Iraq. See, Iraq is an “Over There” kind of place. America is an “Over Here” kind of place. I know for a fact that there are more Americans “Over Here” and that there are more non Americans “Over There.” By sending fewer troops than some recommended I ensured that this would continue to be true. It is plain to see that fewer Americans are dying “Over Here” than are dying “Over There” due to acts of terrorism. This balances out the score card and I expect that before the elections in November that we will have achieved our goal of having more Americans killed by terrorists “Over There” then died on September 11, 2001 “Over Here.”

Domestic spying is another issue I would like to address. We are only spying on those in America who may be terrorists, those in America who may be sympathetic with the terrorists, and those in America who disagree with or who may disagree with tax cuts. We need to find out what these people are up to. Since September 11, 2001 we have stopped all further terrorist activities and thwarted all challenges to tax cuts. Our program is working.

Now some of you claim that this violates the law. We are at war. I am a war President. When a President is at war he can’t violate the law. He is above the law. The Constitution should never be allowed to obstruct our freedoms. We need to stay the course. We need to listen to our President (that’s me) and do what we are told to do in this time of grave danger to the economic interests of our corporations.

Finally, I would like to announce that I will be introducing a bill in congress to greatly reduce the threat to America that dissent creates. Speech will no longer be free but will become a pay as you go process. The people who create the jobs in this country will of course get deep discounts. I am thinking twenty five cents a page. Our detractors will be charged a dollar a word. With this revenue the loud mouths will help us fund new detention centers and help pay for new guards. This is a program that will help keep America moving forward.

I thank you for this opportunity to speak and will be sending fifty cents off to the IRS.

The White House informed me today that i would be audited if i refused to publish this.

Friday, May 19, 2006


My heart is heavy today. After reading this, I wonder how many soldiers are coming home suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. I wonder how many will ever actually be able to return to some kind of "normal" life. Will they ever recover? I cry when I think of the damage this senseless, needless war has caused. Not only to our troops, but to the Iraqi troops, the Iraqi citizens, and to the families of all of them. I cry when I think of the personal pain and suffering PTSD brings. I cry when I think of the wives, Mothers, Fathers, sisters, brothers, children, friends.....who will never have any way of knowing or truly understanding what a guy like Blake Miller is going through. I cry when I think of the Iraqi children who suffer in silence. Can you imagine how many of them suffer from PTSD? Children who have seen war first hand.....and will have to live with those visions the rest of their lives. 2,453 U.S. soldiers dead, 17,648 wounded....and how many suffering in silence???

Blake's Story

My friend Xoites is without a doubt, 100% correct. It's time to make a sign and take it to the street corners all over the country. It's time to stand up, even if it be alone to start with, and demand we stop all the death, maiming and destruction of life. Go out this week and support the troops. Support the innocent children and citizens of Iraq. Support the families and friends of our troops, who live with the heartbreak of not being able to do anything to stop the PTSD that their loved ones suffer from. Do it for the U.S. soldiers who have died, who have lost limbs, who have lost their eyesight, who have brain injuries. Do it peacefully and with dignity. Just do it!!!

QuestionGirl was kind enough to write something for me today. Please check out her website, it is very good.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

A Modest Proposal

I have been asked to come up with a viable suggestion on how to protest this President, this war, the scandals, the rape of the US Constitution and the assault on our rights as Americans. It has been noted by many that when mass demonstrations occur “Free Speech Zones” are set up so no one can be heard.

I have a modest proposal. It may sound to some to be a little too simple and to others it may sound a little too difficult.

When thousands of people get together in one place the police and the mayors start talking about potential violence and they respond by creating barriers between the demonstrators and the people who need to be reached. They keep the press away. The press stays away.

We are diverse people scattered all over the country and the planet. We live in different places and traveling to a mass demonstration only to be corralled into pens seems an expensive and lackluster endeavor.

I propose that we demonstrate locally simultaneously every week. I propose we make a sign and go to the busiest intersection in our own areas and stand there for four hours. I am suggesting Saturdays from ten in the morning until two in the afternoon local time. I think this can be done by one individual. I think groups of two or three should be encouraged. If the group gets larger than that I think another corner should be found and then there are two groups.

People go out on Saturdays to go shopping and get their business done. They will see us. If they see us in several places they will start to notice. If they start to notice they will start to think and some may decide to join us.

This is as grass roots as it gets.

It is simple and straight forward. It is legal in most places as long as you do not block the sidewalk and you are on public property. Taking along a snack and something to drink is advisable and sun block is an absolute must. If you are committed enough to do this in the rain wrap your sign in plastic wrap and take rain gear.

If I am correct and as many people as I think are opposed to this nonsense as much as we are we will be joined. We will have an impact. A huge demonstration in DC is far removed. A protester on the corner down the street is real.

Be prepared to talk to people both friendly and unfriendly. Try to stay out of arguments and do not react to hecklers.

Give me your thoughts, please.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

The Only Thing We Have to Cheer is - Fear Itself

Eric was kind enough to write a guest blogg for me.

It has been obvious for some time now that our dear
President has been scrambling for cover.
With poll numbers dropping like the Hindenburg, his
Administration leaking worse than
Harry Whittington's neck and Karl Rove in Patrick
Fitzgerald's sites, he is clearly on the ropes.
The neocon agenda is dead, his own party is divided
and he now lies in state -- a lame duck.

Just like everything else in his life, this child of
privilege has failed miserably as a leader. Plagued by
scandal and zero credibility left, he has only one
card left to play. Fear.

In decidedly milquetoast fashion, President Bush went
before the nation last night and told
us all that we must fear the brown enemy from the
south. After 5 years in office, he has finally
come to the conclusion that it is now such a critical
issue that we must deploy our decimated
National Guard to shore up the borders. To calm the
masses, he vows these brave souls will
not carry weapons. Right. What happens if there is
panic or violent protest to their presence
and they are caught with nothing more than pens in
their hands?

The single most disturbing portion of his speech
detailed the "catch and release" techniques
currently being employed by our border patrol agents.
He stated that the reason behind this
ineffective program was due to a lack of beds in our
detintion centers. Detention centers?
I got chills and my stomach flipped upside down. Not
to worry, says George -- We'll just fill
those centers up with beds, that'll fix everything!
These words conjured up images of the
Japanese interment camps of WWII -- Another national
shame. Am I the only one who felt that
evil rumbling in my gut?

The following is an exerpt from the song Witch Hunt,
by Rush. The words are telling, some
27 years after the song's release -

The righteous rise
With burning eyes
Of hatred and ill-will.
Madmen fed on fear and lies
To beat and burn and kill.

They say there are strangers who threaten us,
Our immigrants and infidels.
They say there is strangeness to danger us
In our theatres and bookstore shelves,
That those who know whats best for us
Must rise and save us from ourselves.

Quick to judge,
Quick to anger,
Slow to understand
Ignorance and prejudice
And fear walk hand in hand

We're witnessing the implosion of an American
President and he's scared to death.
His transparency is laughable -- like a four year old
child covering their face
with both hands whose convinced "you can't see me" he
makes every effort to
distract us from the truth of his crimes and failures.

We will not cower in fear, Sir.
We will not give up our rights willingly.
We will fight for them tooth and nail.
This great nation wasn't founded on fear.
It was forged from blood and bravery.
And an unquenchable thirst for Freedom!

We will not go quietly....No, Sir.

Eric's Blog

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Experiment in Democracy Ends

It lasted two hundred and twenty five years. It had a good run but a bumpy ride. It was dismantled five years ago and we are just beginning to catch on.

But it is over.

The United States Constitution is dead. May it rest in peace. George W. Bush and all the people who put him in power; from the Supreme Court to Katherine Harris to Diebold, Enron, Exxon and Haliburton and Congress have taken the most talked about document of the past two hundred years and turned it into useless recyclable parchment.

The President can do what he wants, when he wants and to who he wants.

Case closed.

Time to go home and wait for the knock on the door.

Goodnight America.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Revenge of the Turds

I can’t help but think Vietnam and Richard Nixon are the real reasons we are in Iraq. Weapons of Mass Destruction, Al Qaeda and the “War on Terror” are beside the point.

After our withdrawal from Vietnam and the resignation of Nixon some brashly predicted that the Republican Party was on its way out. Democrats regained the White House and had full control of the Congress. The Supreme Court seemed liberal enough.

But Joseph Coors had other ideas and set up the Heritage Foundation. This non profit “Think Tank” promoted it agenda by sending out two Op Ed pieces a day to every major newspaper in the county. Today you can hardly hear a political debate on a talk show without a member of this group being present to muddy the waters on every important issue we face.

Of course this was only one group pushing hard to regain control of the White House for the far right wing and with the election of Ronald Reagan their power grew exponentially.

It is debated whether Reagan’s first act in office was to remove the solar panels installed by Green Peace from the roof of the White house, dismantle the Peace Academy or have a sit down with all the majors news editors in the country. But all three happened immediately. In the meeting with the editors Reagan officials implored the media not to be critical of them for a couple of years until they had their agenda rolling and saw the results. The media complied. Today that seems like a given. Back then that was appalling.

These Neo Cons have had an agenda for decades and Clinton getting elected twice set their schedule back. This explains a lot about why he was hounded from the beginning.

Vietnam sticks in the craw of the founders of this movement. They wanted to prove we could win a war like the one we didn’t in Southeast Asia. Perhaps they had a better idea than the people who came behind them. We may never know.

So here we are in Iraq thirty years later reliving one of our worst nightmares. Everything we have done there is either morally, tactically or strategically wrong.

To summarize we invaded based either on bad information or outright lies. Take your pick. Information coming out of the early days of the invasion was fabricated by the Defense Department from the orchestrated statue removal to the fake rescue of Jessica Lynch and of course in Afghanistan the cover up of “friendly fire” that killed Pat Tillman.

Beyond the lies distortion and propaganda we have the sweetheart deals with Kellogg Brown and Root. The hiring of mercenaries at outrageous salaries and the importation of desperately poor third world workers to work for peanuts goes all but unnoticed in the Corporate Press.

After destroying the Iraqi economy and firing every last member of the military we watched as Baghdad was looted. Three years later electricity is scarce; leaving your home at night is not an option and during the day is risky business.

Our troops who we are implored to support by keeping our mouths shut are being fed two meals a day and have to go begging food from Iraqi families. Their equipment is shoddy or absent. They have to be on patrol for up to twenty two hours a day and rely on “Go” pills to stay alert.

The press is calling Stephen Colbert “rude.”

The list goes on: Abu Ghraib, Iran clashing with the Kurds and Turkey applauding Iran from the sidelines as they beef up their troops on the border. Sy Hirsch’s revelations about the possible use of Nukes in Iran is more than disquieting.

In Vietnam we made a lot of mistakes. What we learned is hard to discern. Today in Iraq we are making new and improved mistakes. We have a more than compliant press. We have a suspect voting system. We have a President who thinks he talks to God and may in fact believe he is the Messiah. George Bush may believe in a lot of things but the United States Constitution is not one of them. With over 750 “signing statements” under his belt the Constitution is all but void.

If these are the repercussions of our misadventure in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos and the resignation of Richard Nixon as I believe they are then I have no way of predicting what lies ahead. Like an animal in a trap we may not be able to get out of Iraq without gnawing our leg off.

Our entire approach is wrong because it appears the Administration’s entire strategy is based on getting revenge on the “dirty hippies,” the Democrats and proving that Vietnam was a winnable war. Policies based on this mentality are doomed to failure and the consequences far reaching and unpredictable.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

The Truth Behind "Truthiness"

On Saturday night Steven Colbert spoke to the annual White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Well, not so much spoke as roared. He stripped Bush of his false charisma and his deluded notions of self worth. George W. Bush walked into the hall as the Commander in Chief and slunk out the door as a scolded spoiled brat.

The press did not fare any better. In fact it would seem that the Corporate Media is as irritated at Colbert’s veracity as Bush is.

After celebrating for three days over this amazing tour de force it is time to look at what this really means.

Steven has thrown down the gauntlet. Not to Bush or the press. He has flatly stated to each and every one of us that the time has come. Time to stop waiting around until someone comes up with a plan of action. Time to stop excusing ourselves because we think the time is not, “right.”

It is time to follow in Steven Colbert’s footsteps and find coherent ways to speak the truth to an audience that feigns deafness.

We are all not comedians. None the less we see the truth. There are millions of ways to voice the truth. Letters, blogs, protests and art are just a few. The truth, unlike “truthiness” is felt not only in our guts but in our heads and our hearts.

Use you heads. Follow your hearts. And get some guts.

Speak out now! Defend your country and the principals it was founded on. It is not too late. It is never too late.

Steven Colbert has shown us by example that it can be done. Let’s build on this inspiration. Let us in turn inspire him and each other!

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