Rahm, Chuck and The Nag… 30 April 2006Posted by marisacat in Big Box Blogs, DC Politics, Democrats, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Lie Down Fall Down Dems.
No doubt all have read (or gagged and stopped reading) the moldy bagels and spoiled schmear served up from the NYT – and the Democrats – today.
No need to excerpt.
This just begs for some bleach from Walter Karp, Buried Alive, Essays from our Endangered Republic, (Franklin Square Press from Harper's magazine, 1992), p. 255:
"The Washington politician's view of what is going on in the United States has been substituted for what is actually happening in the country," former president of the A.P. Wes Gallagher pointed out in the mid-1970s, a time when the press enjoyed a brief hour of post-Watergate freeness.
And why would Washington politicians want us to know that our knowledge of them comes from them? That is the kind of knowledge that awakens a sleeping people, that dissolves political myths and penetrates political disguises.
To keep all such dreaded knowledge from the rest of us is the "information policy" of those who rule us. And so it is we hear, from the left as well as the right, the steady drone about media power.
There is more, same page… what? you think this 'lie down fall down party' is <gasp> NEW??:
From the "frightening information policy" to the impeachable offenses documented in the shunned Iran-Contra report, the private story behind every major non-story during the Reagan Administration was the Democrats' tacit alliance with Reagan.
It is this complicity, and not the Reagan Administration's deft "management" of the news we hear so much about, that explains the press's supineness during the Reagan years. As usual, it was Congress that was managing the news.
"It was very hard to write stories raising questions about Reagan's policy, because the Democrats weren't playing the role of an opposition party," said the A.P.'s Parry [that's Robert Parry], explaining to Hertsgaard why the press seemed to be "on bended knee" during the Reagan years. Congress, said Leslie Stahl of CBS News, "has not been a source for the press in the whole Reagan Administration.
They don't want to criticize this beloved man."
Even good stories fell flat, said Jonathan Kwitny, a Wall Street Journal reporter at the time, because "there is no opposition within the political system."
When the Times, to its credit, reported on August 8, 1985, that White House aides were giving "direct military advice" to the President's private Contra army, Reagan replied at a press conference that "we're not violating any laws."
Democratic leaders asked the President's national security adviser, Robert McFarlane (later convicted for his answer), whether the President was Iying, after which they assured the press there was nothing to the report.
And for many months one of the most momentous stories of our time "just went nowhere," as Larry Speakes, Reagan's press secretary, boasted to Hertsgaard.
The pain is not over (remember the image from above, the elephant before its pliant orchestra):
For eight years the Democratic opposition had shielded from the public a feckless, lawless President with an appalling appetite for private power.
That was the story of the Reagan years, and Washington journalists evidently knew it. Yet they never turned the collusive politics of the Democratic Party into news.
Slavishly in thrall to the powerful, incapable of enlightening the ruled without the consent of the rulers, the working press, the "star" reporters, the pundits, the sages, the columnists passed on to us, instead, the Democrats' mendacious drivel about the President's "Teflon shield."
For eight years we saw the effects of a bipartisan political class in action, but the press did not show us that political class acting, exercising its collective power, making things happen, contriving the appearances that were reported as news.
It rarely does.
The rather laughable remedy?, or so they sell themselves to be…
Don't miss this one (and believe me, my bleeding, liberal til I die, small "d" democratic heart has long opposed the Liebermans of the game):
Ned Lamont is going to be a fantastic Senator. I'm proud of all of our work, together, in putting him on the path to getting there. And that's why you should give. Not because he needs the money, though he does. But because this is an investment in yourself. This is an investment in what it means to be a citizen, to take action, to affect the country and the world, and to let hope triumph over apathy and cynicism.
Lamont is little more than diversion. I rather suspect some pique over this or that, perhaps deeply rooted. Some disposable time and cash (but not enough, tho a lot spent), some flexing by the BBB toward a "technologist". Yes, that is Lamont's definition of himself, for some years now.
Add in some out of office CT Dems and operatives who may enjoy a "run" at Lieberman, mix in lofty ideas from the recent display by Hackett.. and voila, you have an "insurgent" run.
The appearance of one, that is.
The exhortation in the solicitation for Lamont is to return our nation to ''greatness''.
We need humility and we need sanity. We need some of South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission hearings.
Otherwise, it is the orchestra:
Wherein Sirota deconstructs Beinart… 30 April 2006Posted by marisacat in DC Politics.
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Really. And a thing of beauty it is too. Enjoy…
Can we stop this? 29 April 2006Posted by marisacat in 2006 Mid Terms, 2008 Election, Iran, Iraq War.
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Where does the horror end? Perhaps it does not, not for decades.
I understand we have brought invasion and occupation to Iraq and life is a spiraling horror there, but I am utterly weary of feeling that the precipice of the world, one that falls away to a great black abyss, is outside my back door. I never signed on for "instigator", nor "invader" and certainly never for "occupier".
But here we are.
A trade of insults, Iran wants to wipe Israel off the face of the earth (not news, frankly, as rhetoric) now Ehud Olmert of Israel pungles up Hitler's name as reply…. Also not news.
However, the Sunday Times of London is reporting:
The attack on President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has called for Israel to be “wiped off the map”, came as it emerged that the head of Mossad, the Israeli intelligence agency, secretly discussed the nuclear programme with officials in Washington last week.
Meir Dagan, the Mossad chief, is believed to have passed on the latest Israeli intelligence on covert Iranian plans for enriching uranium, with a warning that Tehran may be nearer to acquiring nuclear weapons than widely believed.
The Israeli leader’s comments, his most forceful condemnation of Ahmadinejad, came in an interview with the German newspaper Bild.
Dagan, a stocky former commando who was injured in the 1967 six-day war, was sent to Washington by Olmert, the victor of last month’s Israeli elections, to prepare the way for his own visit to the White House on May 23. The Mossad boss is thought to have held meetings with counterparts at the CIA, the Pentagon and national security council. “Dagan is not given to small talk and niceties,” said an Israeli intelligence source, who believes he told the Americans: “This is what we know and this is what we’ll do if you continue to do nothing.”
We always, always have the wrong "friends".
A senior Israeli source said in Washington last week that Israel could not allow Iran to spin out negotiations indefinitely. “If we do not see any progress on the political or economic track that convinces the Iranians to back down, one of the parties will use the military option,” he said.
And the croc won… 29 April 2006Posted by marisacat in 2006 Mid Terms, 2008 Election, Big Box Blogs, Blonde Sense, Europe, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.
Oh the rising noise of the long, endle$$ election games.
Organisers and outreach staff and volunteers slog on, day after day. They mull over liberal, they mull over progressive. They juggle the invisible balls.
How old, how tired. How dead. And yet, they lecture.
Shoot the energizer bunny, please…if it wears a D, or an R or even an I – but is an operative.
I'd rather deal with a door to door salesman, if such a thing still existed.
Years ago I answered the phone, a staffer for the Kathleen Brown (daughter of Pat, sister of Jerry) run for, hmmm, she ran for the US Senate I believe.
What a tired lecture I got. In my ear, in my home. What tedious condescension. How out of place. Mindless offense.
And, worse!, KB was conducting such a lousy run. We watched it fail every day… even Bill Clinton could not rescue her… and lord he tried.
Operatives kill themselves by not respecting the electorate.
Give me the European system, short, fast, highly demonstrative, high energy elections. I love to go when they are on, especially in March for the spring elections. High spirits.
As opposed to the buzz zzz zzzz saw, the endless drone, dentist's drill that is US elections.
And the Big Box Blogs were not, once upon a time, tied to the Democratic party by pink rhinestone collars and pink leashes. But now they are tightly tied in… Buzzzzzzzzzz saws.
And we won't even discuss The Tent.
An instructive tale via the BBC this am, from Australia.
Worker Freddy Buckland was cutting a tree that had fallen as a result of a recent tropical cyclone.
Peter Shappert, the tavern's owner, said the crocodile jumped from the water and sped 20ft to the tree.
"It must have been the noise… I don't think he was actually trying to grab Freddy, but I'm not sure. He had a fair go at him… I think he just grabbed the first thing he could and it happened to be the chainsaw," he told the Associated Press news agency.
Tavern co-owner Linda Francis said: "Fred virtually gave him the chainsaw, shoved it at him.
"It was still going and he took the chainsaw onto the ground and proceeded to smash it and it stalled. The crocodile didn't cut himself, just broke a few teeth."
Mr Shappert said the saw was destroyed.
"He chewed on the chainsaw for about an hour-and-a-half, then we finally got it out."
Saltwater crocodiles are known to attack small boats, apparently disturbed by the sound of outboard motors.
The moral? Get a pet croc and sic 'em! Aim that croc at an operative!
I want one.
I see that Mike the Mad Biologist has a good post up on integrity in shaping the agenda and highlights an instance of absence of abuse in using political influence.
In this case, he refers to Reich, former Sec of Labor under Clinton and an actual liberal progressive … or whatever! Whatever because the words are worn out, after '72 the Dem party ran in a panic from "liberal" and now they have worn out "progressive" as well, esp when linked, post Kerry flatulence, to "reform".
Too many self-professed ''liberals'' would be too too comfy with Wilson and too many ''progressives'' would be fine with the social engineering of harsh urban "redevelopment", a classic "progressive" policy.
But let me arrest garrulous digression and back to Mike the Mad Biologist:
It's Called Integrity
It's a dirty secret that many opinion makers are paid by corporations to spout the company line (e.g., Armstrong Williams). While I don't always agree with Robert Reich, at least he is an honest person. He refused to accept payment to publicly support GM's buyout plan (this is also against GM's stated policies).
In a democracy, the free and honest exchange of ideas is necessary. [...]
Words should have meaning, and not simply be mechanisms of control.
I am so tired of all of the lies. It would appear that Reich might be too.
I'll get TWO crocs and send one to MtMB…
So. They say Hillary is running. 28 April 2006Posted by marisacat in 2008 Election, Democrats, Divertissements, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.
When was she not, I say.
She must do something about getting a stump… er, fire hydrant speech. Just has to. After La Kerry we cannot have another self-impressed nom, who also does not have a credible stump speech. Kerry drooled his speeches, she spits out lectures.
As I type this just the memory of her voice grates in my ear. Quite aside from the guff she upchucks (10K to Casey).
Meanwhile Bill is handy. Useful, ministering, evangelising Bill.
Spoiled Sparky [not kidding, that is his name]
A little Bush Biz, some Africa Biz with Holbrooke (no pic, he is not a dog, he is a rock that speaks), some Ports Biz, little phoning to our (that means Bush and Clinton) friends. You know them: the UAE team for global security and ports and terminals administration.
This is our Poodle Whirligig. It is 15 inches tall and has 10 inch legs. Available in black and white. $29. Look at our other dog whirligigs!
Oh planning on adding enough senate seats to get to majority. Opera glasses at the ready!. This will be fun. Have some champagne, the bubbles help keep one upright in turgid times….
And Rahm, doing what poodles like Rahm do.
Fun stuff – fun for them. Much fuss and bother, accomplishing little.
And all the while the party is:
[This first appeared elsewhere, March 21, 2006]
Goss and the Gosslings. 28 April 2006Posted by marisacat in DC Politics, U.S. House, Uncategorized.
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Billmon takes the recent revelations about Cunningham (and "Duke" takes on some new permutations) where they lead. I feel I am in endless replay, loop de loop. It started with the first metallic ping, Manucher Gorbanifar's name surfaced early, 2003.
Why bother to get dizzy, this shall not pass. Forget the soft homilies.
I'm still trying to wrap my mind around the news (from Harper's via TPM Muckraker) that Porter Goss, director of the CIA, may be implicated in a hooker service for corrupt (and horny) congressmen paid for by defense contractors and run out of — you really gotta love this part — the Watergate Hotel.
So what are we supposed to call this new scandal?
[...] On the other hand, Goss has a lot of enemies, including just about the entire career staff at the CIA, which he has been industriously purging of suspected Democrats at the behest of his White House masters. (If Porter ever turns up dead, the suspect list is going to include half of the McLean, Va. phone book and most of the world's professional assassins.) So who knows? Maybe it's just ex-spook disinformation — like the bit about the couple of dozen senior White House aides who were supposed to be indicted in the Plame case last October.
[oh yes, that stank of Rover... and he laughed as it spread like a virus... -M-Cat]
I mean, we've got political purges underway in the organs of state security; a one-party legislature run by guys who write their names above the urinals at expensive K Street restaurants ("For a good time, call Duke") and — according to Harper's — limo services tied to call girl rings pulling down multi-million dollar contracts with the Department of Homeland Security, which itself sounds like a name dreamed up for the movie Brazil.
Forget Fellini, even Terry Gilliam couldn't do this justice.
One thing seems certain, the Watergate Complex was built over some opening to a corridor that leads to the hell that is modern USA!USA! political horror. Nothing else answers how this place reverberates.
We cannot get free of the damned thing.
I know people are hoping for … 27 April 2006Posted by marisacat in DC Politics.
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But I don't think so… tho it would be lovely.
I think we sealed our fate – in the past. We don't look into who kills our presidents and we don't send the criminals in the presidential office to prison. We are in a fucking box.
Prison sentences for the likes of Haldeman, Erlichman and Colson, Leonard Garment, John Dean and so on.. is in another galaxy.
Long ago and far away.
If this sort of thing killed candidacies… 27 April 2006Posted by marisacat in 2006 Mid Terms, 2008 Election, DC Politics.
Well, think… who is in office now…
Still, it is not uninteresting, not at all. From Lizza in TNR, and it looks as though someone unloaded some timely oppo.
On George Allen (R-VA). But maman appears to have been a hoot…
Catch this from her:
Even the elder George Allen wasn't Southern–he grew up in the Midwest–but the oddest part of the myth of George Allen's Dixie rusticity is his mother.
Rather than a Southern belle, Etty was, in fact, French, and, as such, she was a deliciously indiscreet cultural libertine. She would do housework in her bra and panties. She wore muumuus and wraparound sunglasses and once won a belly button contest.
According to Jennifer, "Mom prided herself for being un-American. … She was ashamed that she had given up her French citizenship to become a citizen of a country she deemed infantile." When her husband later moved the family to Virginia, Etty despised living in the state. She was also anti-Washington before her son ever was, albeit in a slightly more continental fashion.
"Washingtonians think their town resembles Paris," she once scoffed. "If Paris passed gas, you'd have Washington."
At least mum is fun.
Tick-tock Tick-tock, right on time… 27 April 2006Posted by marisacat in DC Politics, U.S. Senate.
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I see Susan Collins is calling for, oh, something with FEMA. Smash it, break it, rebuild it twice over – still under the mess that is HLS and just tell it to report to… whoever is El Heife.
Hurricane Katrina exposed flaws in the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Department of Homeland Security that are "too substantial to mend," and FEMA should be dismantled and rebuilt inside the troubled department, according to a final report released by Senate investigators today.
"FEMA is discredited, demoralized and dysfunctional," Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), who chairs the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said at a news conference. "It is beyond repair. Just tweaking the organizational chart will not solve the problem."
The WaPo report is somewhat amusing. Everybody climbs on from departing Scottie Dottie (shut up) to Chertoff who disagreed, to Lieberman who is struggling for distance from his beloved.
However!, the plan is so clear. Destroy the proper bureaucracies of government, from the Intel Services (we don't need 16 but I have no desire to be without intelligence services) to the Army to to to… Politicise everything.
Strip away the ordinary services, and for damn sure don't add any. And snag freedom while at it.