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Vampyres about in the land… 28 October 2007

Posted by marisacat in 2008 Election, Big Box Blogs, California / Pacific Coast, DC Politics, Democrats, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Iran, Iraq War, Political Blogs, U.S. Senate, WAR!.
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Right right right… that was such an outside the Beltway, insurgent run.  Riiiight:

Webb, a former Pentagon official and Navy secretary, wrote novels based on his Vietnam War experiences. In the Senate, he sits on three relevant committees: Armed Services, Foreign Relations and Veterans’ Affairs. He keeps a writing office in Rosslyn that overlooks the Iwo Jima Memorial, and he often takes walks through Arlington National Cemetery, where his father is buried.  [I am making a sign of the cross, head bowed in deep respect... yeah right... - Mcat]

Reid, who met Webb in the early days of his long-shot Senate campaign, has become his patron in the chamber. The two were introduced by former senator Bob Kerrey (D-Neb.), another Vietnam veteran with an independent streak, who for years had been encouraging Webb to seek public office. [another fucking pro-war whack job!  -- Mcat]

Reid lobbied his party to invest in Webb’s candidacy, convinced that the political neophyte’s unusual profile put the Virginia Senate seat, held by GOP rising star Allen, within reach. “It was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made,” Reid said in an interview, but he conceded, “He’s not easily led.”

Shortly after his election, Webb snubbed the president at a White House reception when Bush asked about his son, a Marine recently deployed to Iraq. Asked by Reid to deliver the Democratic response to the State of the Union address, Webb discarded a draft prepared for him and wrote his own. This spring, when a senior Webb staffer was arrested carrying the senator’s loaded handgun into a Capitol office building, Webb asserted his right “to defend myself and my family.”

No small “d” democrat mentioned in that article – not a one!  LOL

Myself, I always thought Raising Kaine, the online site that backed Kaine and later Webb smelled to high heaven of Republican (tho not pro George Allen) elephant droppings…  The objective of the Wapo piece is to push (or merely profile, who knows) Webb for Veepessa (he just gave the key note speech at the J-J dinner in NH, woohoo!). 

I could see it, tho I have zero idea who Hillary will pick.

No matter what, we are screwed, so – why worry ?? (truly! I have learned to love the bomb!).    Her annual State of the Union speeches should make George’s look tolerable. 

Yes, I did say that.

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    Sunday morning – Malibu – October 07 fires [LAT reader photo]

Love it when the vampyres rise up and piss on the Democrats – (remember… I have learned to Love the Bomb!!)

Last month – to the day:

BREAKING NEWS: Electoral initiative backers give up

Plagued by a lack of money, supporters of a statewide initiative drive to change the way California’s 55 electoral votes are apportioned, first revealed here by Top of the Ticket in July, are pulling the plug on that effort.

In an exclusive report to appear on this website late tonight and in Friday’s print editions, The Times’ Dan Morain reports that the proposal to change the winner-take-all electoral vote allocation to one by congressional district is virtually dead with the resignation of key supporters, internal disputes and a lack of funds.

The reality is hundreds of thousands of signatures must be gathered by the end of November to get the measure on the June 2008 ballot.

Opposition was led by Democratic consultant Chris Lehane who received financial backing from donors such as Stephen Bing, like Lehane a Hillary Clinton backer who saw any threat to keeping all of California’s electoral votes as unacceptable.

“We want to to make sure this is not the Freddy Krueger of initiatives,” Lehane said today, “that comes back to life. We’ll continue to monitor it.” Morain’s full story is available here.

The Democrats even ran a puff piece in the NYT, loaded with slobbery luv for Lehane, how he had vanquished the Republican efforts….  Both sides are making sure their operatives appear above the fold in this play for the CA EV…

Then, this week

The intent is to change California’s winner-take-all system, which would give Republicans an edge in the presidential race.

By Dan Morain and Joe Mathews, Los Angeles Times Staff Writers
October 23, 2007

SACRAMENTO — Veteran GOP consultants said Monday that they were relaunching a drive to change the way California allocates its electoral college votes, aimed at helping the 2008 Republican presidential nominee capture the White House.

Political strategist David Gilliard said he was taking over the ballot initiative campaign, along with strategist Ed Rollins and fundraiser Anne Dunsmore. Consultant Mike Arno will oversee the signature-gathering effort.

Our budget is going to be whatever it takes to make the June ballot,” said Gilliard, who played a key role in getting the recall of Democratic Gov. Gray Davis onto the 2003 ballot.

The proposed initiative would change California’s method of allocating its 55 electoral votes from a winner-take-all basis, which favors Democrats, to a congressional district-based approach. Republicans hold 19 congressional seats, so presumably the GOP nominee could win a similar number of electoral votes.

The effort stalled last month when its original organizers failed to raise the $2 million needed to place the initiative on the June ballot.

Until recently, Dunsmore oversaw fundraising for Rudolph W. Giuliani’s presidential campaign — prompting Democrats to charge that the former New York mayor was behind the initiative drive. A major Giuliani benefactor, Wall Street mogul Paul E. Singer, donated $175,000 to fund the original effort.

Yes there is a daunting number of signatures to gather to get this on the ballot… but this has loads of behind-the-scenes Republican factions, operatives and consultants working on it. And has for a long time…  Arnold publically claims hands off, but last year Tom Campbell (ran agaisnt Feinstein three times, from her LEFT, as a R) was working with Arnold on this very putsch.  Long time R money from the 2003 Recall as well as no tax/low tax CA pols and operatives are behind this.  And Guiliani money and operatives.

 The last kicker…

This can go on the ballot as late as the NOVEMBER 2008 ballot and be legal in the 2008 run.  Our votes are not certified ’til January ’09.  The current plan, the public plan, is that it should go on the June ’08 [rimary ballot here… yes … our primary is split.  The moved up, gamed up, Dem mobbed up early presidential primary, then later, in June, we vote in the down ticket primary.  They plan to wear us out, voting for scheisse.

Republicans feel that with low turn out (our primary numbers are falling – 30% in the ’03 Recall and less than 25% in the ’04 primary - any shock?  We are WEARING OUT!) June might work for them, low turn out, but more Republicans.

No point counting the R out of the game.  And, for months now Guiliani says, support me, I can win in CA.  I caught Willie Brown, the other night on television, trying to say this is a very blue state.

BULLSHIT!

No, it’s not … it has some big blue districts.  And the Republicans have parsed the numbers, very finely.  You break the ‘winner take all’ system of apportioning the EV, you can, conceivably, deny the Democrats the WH.  For a long time.

Years ago, I used to worry — about this very thing.  But I learned to Love the Bomb:   In all its forms….

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Comments»

1. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

I say let them have it, fuck it, whichever flavour of the war party wins out. I hear people all the time say “Americans are a ‘conservative’ (though most people have NO fucking idea what that means) people. So fine, let them have it, lets get rid of the last vestiges of even the appearance of a debate. Let them vote for war or wider war. Let them have the party of Big Oil, or the party of Hedge Funds. Let them all learn the harder lessons to come … the falling bridges and drowned cities and burned subdivisions.

I listen to Webb and I hear fascist nutter. His worship of his “warrior” (meaningly zealous cannon fodder) people is creepy.

I could see him running w/ Clinton.

2. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

The NY Times is full of silliness writing off the Xtian theofascists this morning:

The Evangelical Crackup

These days, Fox has taken his fire and brimstone in search of a new pulpit. He rented space at the Johnny Western Theater at the Wild West World amusement park until it folded. Now he preaches at a Best Western hotel. “I don’t mind telling you that I paid a price for the political stands I took,” Fox said. “The pendulum in the Christian world has swung back to the moderate point of view. The real battle now is among evangelicals.”

Fox is not the only conservative Christian to feel the heat of those battles, even in — of all places — Wichita. Within three months of his departure, the two other most influential conservative Christian pastors in the city had left their pulpits as well. And in the silence left by their voices, a new generation of pastors distinctly suspicious of the Republican Party — some as likely to lean left as right — is beginning to speak up.

Just three years ago, the leaders of the conservative Christian political movement could almost see the Promised Land. White evangelical Protestants looked like perhaps the most potent voting bloc in America. They turned out for President George W. Bush in record numbers, supporting him for re-election by a ratio of four to one. Republican strategists predicted that religious traditionalists would help bring about an era of dominance for their party. Spokesmen for the Christian conservative movement warned of the wrath of “values voters.” James C. Dobson, the founder of Focus on the Family, was poised to play kingmaker in 2008, at least in the Republican primary. And thanks to President Bush, the Supreme Court appeared just one vote away from answering the prayers of evangelical activists by overturning Roe v. Wade.

Today the movement shows signs of coming apart beneath its leaders. It is not merely that none of the 2008 Republican front-runners come close to measuring up to President Bush in the eyes of the evangelical faithful, although it would be hard to find a cast of characters more ill fit for those shoes: a lapsed-Catholic big-city mayor; a Massachusetts Mormon; a church-skipping Hollywood character actor; and a political renegade known for crossing swords with the Rev. Pat Robertson and the Rev. Jerry Falwell. Nor is the problem simply that the Democratic presidential front-runners — Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, Senator Barack Obama and former Senator John Edwards — sound like a bunch of tent-revival Bible thumpers compared with the Republicans.

And Frank Rich has a silly idea that it’s Rudy who will finish them off

3. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

Elliot Spitzer, just another spineless Donklephant

Gov. Eliot Spitzer’s retreat from his plan to permit illegal immigrants to obtain the same kind of driver’s licenses as other New Yorkers drew angry reactions yesterday from civil liberties advocates and immigrant groups, some of whom described the shift as a stunning betrayal.

The governor has been under fierce assault from conservative groups and others since proposing last month to allow illegal immigrants to get New York driver’s licenses. But joined by the federal secretary of homeland security, Michael Chertoff, in Washington yesterday, the governor announced a starkly different version of his plan.

It calls for separate tiers of licenses. New Yorkers who could provide stringent proof of legal residency could get the new federally recognized license known as Real ID. The licenses available to illegal residents would not serve as federal identification.

“What a huge political flip,” said Chung-Wha Hong, executive director of the New York Immigration Coalition.

“He’s now embracing and letting his good name be used to promote something that has been widely known in the immigrant community as one of the most anti-immigrant pieces of legislation to come out of Congress,” Ms. Hong said.

Pathetic.

4. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

John Cole on the medical marijuana activist who killed herself recently (I linked in the last thread):

Let’s Be Blunt

I have had a couple drinks, so let’s be blunt (pardon the pun)- and this goes out to anyone, of any political persuasion, anywhere, who had a problem with this woman using marijuana to alleviate her pain (especially the alleged “conservative” federalists who can’t handle the thought of states making their own drug laws):

Go fuck yourself. To death.

I am tired of being patient with you nannies and your stupid self-serving rules and your slippery slopes and your bullshit and your need to be tough on crime and your earnest concerns about society. Mind your own business, get your own house in order, stop fucking interns and little boys and cheating on your wives and on your taxes and being found dead wearing two wetsuits with a dildo shoved up your ass. Just mind your own damned business, and let people do what they must to deal with their own screwed up lives, and let people handle their pain the best way they can.

I am sick of the bullshit. Life is hard for most people out there, and damned near impossible for people in chronic pain. Quit making it worse, you allegedly compassionate sons-of-bitches.

5. Hair Club for Men - 28 October 2007

Spitzer backed down?

Eric Schneiderman (a Spitzer point guy in the NY Legislature) was on Democracy Now last Friday breathing fire against the nativists.

What happened?

Oh well, I guess we STILL have to vote for Hillary in 2008 because at least she’ll be more moderate about punishing illegals.

6. marisacat - 28 October 2007

“What a huge political flip,” said Chung-Wha Hong, executive director of the New York Immigration Coalition.

FLIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIP

FLOPPPPPPPPER.

But really, learn to love the bomb. Because that is what the Democrats are. They just bomb.

Stock up on pop corn.

7. sabrina - 28 October 2007

I thought that the real ID license was defeated. So everyone has to have their papers in order to live in this country anymore. And we’re not supposed to compare it to Germany in the ’30s.

As for Spitzer backing down, I am surprised. I had not heard that.

I just read an article somewhere that farmers are suffering because of the crackdown on undocumented people.

I kind of agree with Mitm – it made no difference to have a Dem majority over the past year. Things are actually worse.

But Rudi does scare me, I have to say … he always did.

8. marisacat - 28 October 2007

oh the plan is to demonise Rudy to the so called left, liberal (always cowering), moderate Ind…

and thus up turn out for Hillary.

Sorry, I am immune.

9. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

At least Rudy will stab people in the front … or at least openly ignore them and make it clear that he doesn’t give a fuck what non-supporters think. Increasingly it’s the imperiousness of the Donks that gets to me, the empty promises and the lousy nuts-and-bolts politics and the willingness to sell out any group, reverse any stand, when they and their feckless advisors think it’s easier. I find that more dangerous, because it dangles hope in front of peoples’ noses, like a bright flashing lure that hides the barbed hook in its belly.

10. Hair Club for Men - 28 October 2007

oh the plan is to demonise Rudy to the so called left, liberal (always cowering), moderate Ind

Hillary had supporters at the anti-war rally yesterday doing just that. Oh, I’m not saying they were paid to be there or anything, just that a lot of people (even on the left) in NYC seem to like her.

But honestly these anti-war rallies are an incredibly mixed bag since they require not real thought or committment to be there. Walking down Broadway on a Saturday carrying a “fuck bush” sign is, shall we say, a bit less threatening than marching from Selma to Montgomery.

Meeting up with a grizzled old “I was in nam” vet sort of guy wearing a Keffiyeh and hearing him say “what we really need in this country is a draft. I’m sick of all the rich kids sittin this one out” is disheartening to say the least.

11. marisacat - 28 October 2007

well Rangel was sent down, as a young(ish) elected Dem, to march in the Selma to Montgomery march… he has stated he had no idea what it was about and resented that his feet hurt.

No, really. And recall he was not some 18 year old middle class Harlem kid, he had, by then, served in Korea.

Yes………. hard to care about the Dems.

12. Hair Club for Men - 28 October 2007

Yeah but in that case Rangel’s cluelessness could have gotten him killed. A lot of northerners (both white and black) made the same mistake, people like Viola Liuzza and James J. Reeb. They thought they were playing by northern rules.

http://www.uua.org/pressroom/pressreleases/14689.shtml

Rachel Corrie kind of made the same mistake in Gaza, didn’t think the Israelis would kill an American.

But in both cases, Gaza and in Selma, there was such a palpable sense of danger in the air that you didn’t do it in a casual way. Rangel notwithstanding, you tended only to go if you were pretty hard core.

But compare 2007 even to 2002 and 2003. In 2002 and 2003, going to an anti-war march was at least a bit of a step. After all, we were all in that post 9/11 jingo period and the cops were ready to slam barricades on people and run them over with horses.

But in Manhattan in 2007? You’d be hard pressed to find anybody who would admit to liking Bush or being in favor of the war.

13. sabrina - 28 October 2007

I rememeber at the beginning of the war there were reports about a bomb being sent to Iraq called the ‘mother of all bombs’ MOAB airc. I haven’t read anything about it since. Is that the same bomb Bush wants money to ‘maintain’?

Looks like he’ll get all the money he wants. After which I’m sure there will still be apologists for the Dems who give it to him.

Ed Rollins is back? Re Marisa’s post. The last time I saw him was about two years ago on Charlie Rose. He was predicting that ‘Hookergate’ would take down dozens of top elected officials and that it was worse than anyone was aware of. He said he had withdrawn himself from the whole mess. He also said it would be mostly Republicans, but there would be some Dems involved also.

So what happened to Hookergate? Chertoff was mentioned in that scandal, airc. They were all partying and celebrating war supposedly that included prostitutes. Chertoff claimed all he did was have a few drinks and never saw any prostitutes.

I haven’t seen much coverage of the Wilkes trial either. Considering the media’s obsession with sex, you would think this was a trial that would have received saturation coverage:

WILKES’ REPUBLICAN CULTURE OF CORRUPTION TRIAL GETTING WILD– MAY BE KEY TO HASTERT’S EARLY RESIGNATION

Prostitutes, a disloyal nephew, subpoenas refused by bribe-taking members of Congress… Brent Wilkes’ trial is a peek inside the way the Republicans ran the United States government for the first 6 years of the Bush Regime. And the mundane details are sickening in as much as they point to untold millions– perhaps more– being distributed among GOP fat-cats in return for… a chance to win at poker and a little nooky. In the end Cunningham helped Wilkes get nearly $100 million worth of government contracts for around $700,000 in bribes. What a deal!

Joel Combs, a nephew of Wilkes who worked closely with him at Wilkes’ ADCS company in Poway, testified Wednesday morning about another benefit Wilkes gave: He let Cunningham win at poker.

In a morning of testimony that was damaging to Wilkes, Combs revealed that at an expensive trip in Hawaii, Wilkes set up poker games for Cunningham and other people, including Combs. Wilkes gave Combs cash with some instructions.

“He gave me money to lose to Duke,” Combs said.

Then there was the testimony of the prostitutes:

Although Wilkes’ attorney tried to get the judge to rule that none of the prostitutes who were supplied to Cunningham and other Republican officials would be permitted, he was overruled and yesterday Donna Rosetta and Tammy McFadden told their tawdry stories.

Donna Rosetta said she was chauffeured to a private villa at the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel in Kamelua, Hawaii, in August 2003 by an escort service she worked for. Cunningham and Wilkes invited her and a second woman to undress and slide into a hot tub before Cunningham invited her upstairs, Rosetta said.

“They were smoking cigars and talking about some meeting they had earlier,” Rosetta said.

She and Cunningham went to a bedroom, and he tipped her $50 to $80, she said.
The other woman, Tammy McFadden, testified that Wilkes and Cunningham appeared to be arguing about who would go upstairs with which woman.

“The one I ended up with was the one who was running the show,” said McFadden, referring to Wilkes. She described Cunningham as “the boisterous one” and said he was overbearing.

Earlier in the day, Wilkes’ nephew and employee Joel Combs testified that he found the escort service in the phone book on a $20,000 trip to Hawaii that also included catered meals and a diving trip captured on a video that was played for jurors.

‘Support the troops! Support the troops!’

What a disgusting greedfest this war has been. And if this kind of debauchery using the ‘money for the troops’ does not enrage people, I don’t know what will. What fools the American are, paying for all of this.

The prosecution rested on Oct. 18th, I think. I don’t know how this trial has gone so unnoticed. Britney Spears is more interesting that this?

I thought at least they were smarter than to just get their prostitutes from the phone book. And since they are so dumb, how come no one can stop them?

14. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007
15. marisacat - 28 October 2007

the real story on Cunningham is the gay prostitutes.

SOmeone put a tournequit on hte DC madam story/stories.

I assume it is still roiling slightly out of view.

That’s my take anyway.

16. sabrina - 28 October 2007

It could all lead back to Jeff Gannon who seems to have come from nowhere just as the warmongers took over the country and gained unprecedented access to the WH.

The media explained Hastert’s early retirement as a politician just being tired and wanting to return to private life. They made no connnection to the testimony given by Wlkes’ nephew and Hastert’s decision to return to private life.

TPM has been covering the trial also. It’s all so disgusting that these men, Cunningham who screamed ‘traitor’ at anyone who opposed the war, are now revealed as nothing more than cheap liars and crooks and cheaters, living their sordid lives financed by funding for the illegal war.

Prosecution rests in Wilkes trial

Both of the prostitutes told the same story: Wilkes’ nephew brought them into the hotel suite. And from there:

“They asked us if we wanted to get naked and get into the Jacuzzi,” [Donna] Rozetta said.
“What did you do,” prosecutor [Phillip] Halpern asked.

“We got naked and got in the Jacuzzi,” Rozetta replied.

The Jacuzzi calls to mind another hot tub moment in the Cunningham saga.

After Cunningham fed Rozetta some grapes, there was an argument over who got which hooker. Wilkes, much to Cunningham’s dismay, claimed the blond, named Tammy McFadden. Or as McFadden testified, “The one I ended up with was the one who was running the show.”

And even though he wasn’t paying, Cunningham apparently felt that he’d “got the short end of the straw.” And indeed, Cunningham did ask for a different prostitute the next night. But Rozetta seems to have been none too impressed with Cunningham herself — she identified him in the courtroom as the one with “heavy jowls and a puffy face.”

Any Democrat worth anything at all would refuse Bush’s latest demand for more billions based on these revelations alone and ask for an emergency session of Congress to get accountability for the billions already spent. ‘This money is not for the troops! This is what they were doing with your tax dollars’! So why don’t they? Cunningham is already convicted, one of the war’s most vocal supporters.

And named by Wilkes nephew is a string of other Republican war mongers:

Combs, the nephew, also testified that Wilkes also “communicated with” other sleazy politicians known to be hungry for bribes like Jerry Lewis (R-CA), Duncan Hunter (R-CA), Roy Blunt (R-MO), and, of course, Tom DeLay (R-TX) and Denny Hastert (R-IL). He testified today– just as Hastert let it be known he would be resigning from Congress– that Wilkes had paid “to fly Cunningham and former House Speaker Dennis Hastert from a golf outing in Palm Springs to San Diego for a reception and then back to Washington on private jets.” The media isn’t making the connection to the testimony and Hastert’s sudden decision to resign. CNN, for example, reported an aide saying “I think he is just done with being a member of Congress.” I am anxiously awaiting for CNN to report Hastert’s favorite cookie recipes.

Funny how the media doesn’t feel this sleazy story of sex, lies, war, top DC politicians and their disgusting existences as interesting as Clinton’s little fling with Monica.

17. marisacat - 28 October 2007

Any Democrat worth anything at all would refuse Bush’s latest demand for more billions based on these revelations alone and ask for an emergency session of Congress to get accountability for the billions already spent.

Well, they don’t care. They don’t care about Schip either, but they need something to run on…

hmmm Democrats only fussed about a few things last summer and fall as it would bolster the election. They expect 08 to be a slide to the Oval and have forgotten that the war and Katrina (which was strategically folded into the war anger, rather than be allowed to stand on its own) were not enough. Nor was widespread R corruption.

They needed the Foley sex scandal. Very badly.

’08 will be popcorn viewing. Balls to the wall, blood in the gutters. And I think it may be a toss up. Hard to say. Democrats think it will be a cakewalk, all the “retirements”…

Latest seems to be Hillary telling women to vote for her, for staying iwth Bill. I suppose they will line up…. middle management women… small town women…

Rudy seems very intent on CA, will be interesting to see how it goes. If he plays better in the SW and the Mountain West, could be a very tough election.

18. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

Democrats think it will be a cakewalk, all the “retirements”…

yup, stupid against a Republican party that has spent years building infrastructure. I’m sure there are plenty of local up-and-comers ready to fight for those Republican seats, as Rahm and Schumer and Co recruit more “former” Republicans and not-ready-for-primetime “selfmade” millionaires.

Let it all burn down.

19. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

Why we’re in such deep trouble … THESE are the sorts of people who OWN boththe US and UK gov’ts.

These tycoons are stranger than fiction

Put together a banker able to sweet-talk them and a businessman willing to be the predator and a new business was opening up – investment banking. With lush fees for each deal, this was the route to becoming seriously rich.

Felix Rohatyn was the right man in the right place, as was Harold Geneen, the CEO with whom he charmed his way into a symbiotic relationship, and who, in eight years, between 1960 and 1968, bought 110 companies. From then on, there has been no looking back. Cohan’s book is essentially the story of how Lazards surfed the wave of ever-more extravagant deal-making for 40 years and how it, and its partners, moved from being at the margins of capitalism to become a key actor at its deal-making centre.

Cohan paints an extraordinary picture. Most of the deals have left the merged companies worse off, but the US and Britain have organised their economies and system of company ownership to make sure there is an ever-greater supply of feckless deals and takeovers, so that men like Wasserstein, who made it his job to hold the monster egos at Lazards together, can afford to live in luxurious houses in Belgrave Square and the Hamptons or, like David-Weill, have a Watteau over their bed. New Labour’s policy-makers are now anxious that British companies, when they hire workers, retain them and see them progress. Wasserstein and his ilk are only interested in the next deal. The gulf could hardly be greater.

These are two worlds and these dealers are complex men. They need to be as rich as feasibly possible; to be on top, to live in the most prestigious houses, to possess the most prized women. They move from deal to deal over whatever they prize – company, mansion, women – careless of the implications on others’ lives. Their DNA compels them to sate their appetites, to show themselves and those around them that they are life’s winners.

Men like these are necessary evils if capitalism is to work. But society has to be beware of too much Darwinism or else it gets devoured too. American society, creating regulators and investigators to check its deal-makers’ appetites, has always known this truth – and Cohan’s cast of monsters are keenly aware of the need not to get caught. Britain has discarded the checks of socialism and social democracy and put nothing in their place.

Our political class genuflects before the investment bank culture as ‘wealth generation’. Cohan lifts the mask. If only there were more British writers, and a culture that succoured them, who would do the same for us. It would make for a healthier capitalism and a challenge to London as haven to the world’s financially driven scoundrels.

20. marisacat - 28 October 2007

Republicans seem t be in an extended purge of some, but only some, of their gays.

Frankly Gannon seemed a part of all of that. And he did not disappear, either, which is at least worth noting. Considering people thought that would be the next “Watergate”… I never saw that as on the agenda.

Forget his name now… Nicholson maybe? But the Vet Affairs guy who “retired” a few weeks ago, was another.

21. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

Truth Matters

Journalists who have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo or advancing their careers do not operate in the public interest. Their purpose is not to inform but to deceive.

When a major news anchor reports upon the invasion and occupation of sovereign nations, uncritically putting forth pentagon propaganda as justification for the attack, he or she is in essence acting in the manner of a celebrity athlete endorsing a product. The basketball star may endorse Nike sneakers, manufactured by indentured servants in foreign sweatshops; while the news anchor is endorsing war and disaster capitalism projected around the world by Lockheed Martin and the Carlyle Group. Both are prostitutes.

Mainstream corporate journalism is not about speaking truth to power, it is about selling products and perceptions. It is about creating a culture of ignorant consumers incapable of distinguishing between propaganda and news, fact and fiction.

This is marketing and perception management masquerading as unbiased, objecting reporting. I call it the big lie.

If the mainstream journalist wants to prosper, if they want to have access to the inner circles of power, they must play the game according to the established rules. They must toe the corporate line, and provide cover for the corporate assault on human freedoms, and the conquest of nature, while keeping hidden agendas concealed from public view. Journalists must be able to sell widely objectionable concepts to the people, packaged in the garments of seductive—often patriotic language, in order to make them palatable.

22. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

I think you’re right about the purge of gays … why so many leaks about this behavior all at once? Much crowing about the “decline” of the theofascists these days, but what might actually be going on is a consolidation of power amongst the jingoist right, with the removal of anyone who might post a risk later.

23. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007
24. aemd - 28 October 2007

“They don’t care about Schip either, but they need something to run on….”

Ya noticed that, did ya. ;-) The “chicken in every pot” gambit. Maybe I’ll LOL sometime in the future, can’t do it today, it’s all so sick and gamed.

On the bright or of some interest side….in the “yard sign” wars, gotta say the “White boy only and fuck everyone else” libertarian, Paul, is in the lead but..LOL, I’m seeing I’m seein’ BIG (sledgehammer to secure, big) and multiplin’ Gravel signs. Ain’t shittin’ ya here, it’s true. He ain’t got a chance in hell but it’s gotta be buggin’ the shit outta some. :-P

Maybe Hoi polloi, both sides of the aisle, are getting sick of it all. Roll those dice.

Btw, great shot of Webb considerin’ the post title and all…

25. marisacat - 28 October 2007

24

yes– I thought the Niki Tsongas run was pathetic. Running on ending the war and on Schip.

Beyond pathetic. And straight dictation from what is permitted, as per Wolfson/Ann Lewis/Clinton/etc.

Pathetic!

26. aemd - 28 October 2007

“I thought the Niki Tsongas run was pathetic.”

…but very pricey. She’s gonna have to work had to pay that back. Same old… :-D

27. aemd - 28 October 2007

work had = work hard..

28. marisacat - 28 October 2007

agree on the bucks for Tsongas…

I read the Dems panicked at the R ground game. Poured money in… and she ran heavily on Paul’s memory. Ugh… for a squeaker.

Good luck, don’t write, is what I say… ;)

29. wu ming - 28 October 2007

agreed on california being more complicated than a blue state. were the democratic party interested in building up a base with the latino population, hard core organizing, building up local parties, it could be. but they have decided that it is to their liking to depend on independent white homeowners as their margin of victory.

arnold and davis were of the same party, as far as i am concerned. we’ve got far more than two de facto parties out here, and a spectacularly uninformed electorate to boot. as intended.

still, i think the only way giuliani gets any EVs from CA is the state-splitting initiative. those white independent homeowners still care a great deal about lip service to abortion rights and social liberalism, at least for their families. not sure rudy could run arnold’s gameplan in a national race.

blow up a city in CA in some “terrorist attack,” and he’d have a shot, though. hope it doesn’t come to that.

30. marisacat - 28 October 2007

hmm

not saying ti can be done, but CA is so split in its many factions that I would nto place a bet against Rudy, should the proposition to split the EV make it thru. And they have more than one chance, as I see it.

I sat up watching the returns in 05 on parental notice…. that Sebastiani and the Catholic publisher (forget his name) down in OC put a mil or two into. It was a squeaker but for SF, Alameda Co (the big voter base that put it over) pulling in numbers that put it over statewide, tho helped by smaller counties like Marin etc.

Field poll showed it winning by several pts and while it didnto make as a big win as Field indicated it did pull in a more than 5 pt spread.

But in the Recall, I sat in a blue island (the 9 Bay Area counties) in a sea of red, with LA Co barely pulling in 51% against the Recall.

Scary, depending on how a campaign is run. And Arnold is in charge now, with Dems weakening.

Not good news.

The many grass roots orgs that want to concentrate on organising voters and registering new voters, minorities, women etc get shafted. HAVA money went to partisan orgs that only bother iwth “the likely voter”.

Stasis. Which is what the parties want.

Learn ot love the bomb, I say.

31. Intermittent Bystander - 28 October 2007

Greetings, all. Quite a photo up there – a double-booter! Suppose we should be happy he isn’t waving actual M16s. At least, not yet.

Can’t imagine why the GOP would pass up a chance to split the California EV, if they can get away with it. And if they can do so at the very last minute, so much the better, right?

Regarding the NYS driver license mess: I was very surprised that Spitzer proposed the plan in the first place, to tell the truth. A guaranteed rabble-rouser of an issue for the GOP, at a time when Spitzer’s already hemorrhaging approval (on all sides) thanks to the Bruno fiasco.

Talk about free hayrides for the terra ghouls. . . . And unlike residents in some other border states, New Yorkers don’t tend to think of the state as dependent on (never mind in any way loyal to) immigrant labor, since a lot of those workers are semi-invisible – in the timber industry, in orchards, in kitchens, and in overnight cleaning crews.

Right away, a bunch (and eventually, a dozen) of the state’s county clerks publicly announced they would refuse to issue licenses to undocumented residents, and then a couple of them took it further and vowed to notify law enforcement and immigration to ensure arrest and deportation of any aliens who tried to apply.

(Link above is to earlier story at The Albany Project , which follows all the state shenanigans pretty closely.)

Plus, the document requirements for land travel across the Canadian border are supposed to get stricter in February of 2008, though there are still various rumblings about extensions or alternatives to that.

The timing of (and non-preparation of the public for) Spitzer’s initiative meant it was pretty well doomed from the get-go, I’d say. Guess he’ll be learning how to love the (NYS political) bomb, too.

32. marisacat - 28 October 2007

at a time when Spitzer’s already hemorrhaging approval (on all sides) thanks to the Bruno fiasco.
—– IB

I threw my hands in the air when that happened. I am sick to death of dumb pols. spitzer included.

33. Intermittent Bystander - 28 October 2007

Buffalo News story on the driver’s license deal:

The deal — reached after weeks of intense criticism of Gov. Eliot L. Spitzer’s policy on illegal immigrants — calls for three different driver’s licenses to enable the state to comply with federal security mandates adopted after the 2001 terrorist attacks.

It will permit state residents who are U.S. citizens to obtain a new license that would comply with the federal Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, which requires a passport or some other approved form of identification to enter the United States. The cost of the different licenses was not disclosed.

But in cutting the deal with Washington, Spitzer has energized opposition to his policy on immigrants and lost the support of his most loyal defenders, who now say he has caved in by accepting a “scarlet letter” system for 500,000 to 1 million illegal immigrants living in the state.

Spitzer agreed Saturday to put off licenses for illegal immigrants, probably until the end of next year, while the other two licenses are developed.

Way to piss everybody off, Eliot.

34. Intermittent Bystander - 28 October 2007

Nice little goon-whistle in the Bruno quote from the Buffalo News piece:

“The flip by the governor today does not change the fact that he is arrogantly insisting on giving driver’s licenses to illegal aliens, licenses that could still be used as breeder documents to obtain other valid forms of identification,” said Bruno, who contends the Spitzer plan sanctions illegal immigration.

35. marisacat - 28 October 2007

… things are moving along nicely I see w/r/t immigration. Nicely set up for whatever the R will spring in GE.

36. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007
37. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

the real fun part of the right’s nativism is that it w/ devastate the economy, and it will get worse over time.

38. CSTAR - 28 October 2007

MitM: thanks for the video. I immediately sent the link to other people.

39. Hair Club for Men - 28 October 2007

the real fun part of the right’s nativism is that it w/ devastate the economy, and it will get worse over time.

Right wingers are kind of like that.

The Nazis would have probably got nukes and been able to vaporize Stalin’s hordes in less than 20 minutes had they not been so uptight about Jewish scientists.

40. Hair Club for Men - 28 October 2007

the real fun part of the right’s nativism is that it w/ devastate the economy, and it will get worse over time.

Right wingers are kind of like that.

The Nazis would have probably got nukes and been able to vaporize Stalin’s hordes in less than 20 minutes had they not been so uptight about Jewish scientists.

41. Intermittent Bystander - 28 October 2007

I think the right whips out its nativism routine with the flourish of some long, white opera gloves . . . such a neat snap in the air, and a classical pull-me-up covering the black-and-bruised, heavily credit-trackmarked, middle-and-middling, hired (for now) hands of an economy (with a matching national self-image) whose devastation is already well underway.

But I’m grumpy these days.

42. CSTAR - 28 October 2007

Stalin’s hordes? Hmm well, I’m certainly no fan of Stalin, but I don’t think it is fair to call the defense of Soviet Russia against the Nazis an act of “hordes”. And I doubt that however many scientists they had working for them, Jewish or not, the Nazis would have occupied Soviet Russia in a century, much less in 20 minutes.

43. moiv - 28 October 2007

They trust the exit polls in Argentina.

BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) – First lady Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner swept to victory in Argentina’s presidential vote on Sunday to become the first woman elected to lead the country, television exit polls showed.

Polls aired by several television channels showed Fernandez, a center-leftist senator, with 42 percent to 46 percent of the vote, well ahead of her nearest rival, former lawmaker Elisa Carrio with 23 percent to 25 percent.

If official results confirm that Fernandez has more than 45 percent of the vote, or 40 percent with a 10 percentage point lead over Carrio, she will win the presidency without facing a runoff election next month.

44. Hair Club for Men - 28 October 2007

Hmm well, I’m certainly no fan of Stalin, but I don’t think it is fair to call the defense of Soviet Russia against the Nazis an act of “hordes”.

Actually the Red Army could accurately be described as “High Tech Hordes”. They had some good armor but they beat the Nazis because Stalin and Zhukov were willing to take a lot more casualties than the Germans could deal with. And just in case anybody got cold feet, you had the NKVD lined up in the back to shoot anybody who got cold feet.

And I AM a fan of Stalin.

It’s interesting though. Genghis Khan never had nukes or even tanks but he managed to occupy all of Russia and China for decades.

Now THOSE were hordes.

45. Intermittent Bystander - 28 October 2007

MitM – Saw that clip a couple of weeks ago, and yes, that’s the sort of political “TV moment” that deserves the widest possible play.

And just think – no boots were involved!

Sulphur crested Eleanora cockatoo dances to the Backstreet Boys, and by the end of the song, learns to love the bomb.

46. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

IOZ link went to spam.

47. marisacat - 28 October 2007

oh Madman… nothing from you lurking in Spam OR in moderation.

I will check again, see f there was a delay…

48. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

Maybe I screwed it up … here it is. And the new Silber that inspired it.

49. marisacat - 28 October 2007

moiv…

I am guessing Hillary is taking heart from the win for Mme Kirchner…

50. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

That video of the San Diego mayor should have been EVERYWHERE.

51. moiv - 28 October 2007

Here’s another vampyre for you — but this one loves the crucifix.

Not far from where pastor John Hagee preaches the end of the world, the Tilt-a-Whirl and Ferris wheel are doing a booming business.

A group of evangelical women in bright costumes are dancing to “Hava Nagila,” a Hebrew folk song of celebration. Booths selling roasted corn and turkey legs are identified with one of the ancient 12 tribes of Israel.

“In Isaiah, it says in the last days when the Messiah returns, all nations will come to Jerusalem and celebrate – Jew and gentile,” said Renate McWright, a dancer on the grounds of the Cornerstone Church she attends.

The Rev. Hagee, head of the 19,000-member megachurch, is one of the nation’s leading Christian supporters of Israel, using his Texas-based television ministry to reach a worldwide audience. Although largely unknown beyond religious conservatives, he mustered evangelical support early in George W. Bush’s run for president – and he’s seen as an important power broker in the latest race.

Mr. Hagee shares the agenda of social conservatives – opposition to abortion and gay marriage. But his chief mission is a church-driven campaign to get Congress to do more to protect Israel and the U.S. from Islamic extremists.

[:::]

Critics say his unconditional support of Israel discourages compromise on Palestinian statehood and feeds calls to attack Iran, exacerbating an already explosive situation in the Middle East.

“He’s trying to base American foreign policy on his reading of the Bible. And that is absolutely dangerous territory for anyone to tread into,” said Barry Lynn of Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

Mr. Hagee said he is following the Bible’s mandate to protect Israel. He espouses an end-times theology in which he connects Iran’s nuclear threat with the Apocalypse, the final battle of good and evil on earth.

In his book, Jerusalem Countdown, he writes: “Before us is a nuclear countdown with Iran, followed by Ezekiel’s war and then the final battle – the Battle of Armageddon. The end of the world as we know it is rapidly approaching.”

His message fits neatly into the calls to strike a nuclear facility in Iran.

“Iran is Germany,” he said, and its president, Mahmoud Ahmedinejad, “is the new Hitler.”

[:::]

Christians United’s second annual Washington event in July drew 4,500 supporters. President Bush provided a welcoming statement, and speakers included Sen. John McCain of Arizona and Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut. Mr. Lieberman brought the crowd to its feet by comparing Mr. Hagee to Moses.

“Like Moses,” the senator said, “he’s become the leader of a mighty multitude – even greater than the multitude that Moses led from Egypt to the Promised Land.”

52. Hair Club for Men - 28 October 2007

Mr. Lieberman brought the crowd to its feet by comparing Mr. Hagee to Moses.

Just another reason to be happy you voted for Nader. This man was one Mossad bullet away from the White House.

53. moiv - 28 October 2007

This nice — The Last Supper in high-def.

54. Hair Club for Men - 28 October 2007

Chalmers Johnson pulls a Cornell West.

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2007/10/28/211545/86

Smart guy. Stupid move.

Chalmers Johnson: No, that is the problem. I will probably myself personally, its not relevant or not (sic), but I probably will vote for Mr. Obama but not because I think he particularly can do anything, its simply that I have some friends at Yale Law School who happen to know him personally who say that he is extremely intelligent and I say that is about all we can ask for any longer.

55. Miss Devore - 28 October 2007

Mitm, 50:

some tried:

http://www.politicalfleshfeast.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=441

also posted at MLW where I am miraculously undead, though have my eyes pealed for “Nately’s whore”.

56. marisacat - 28 October 2007

fwiw… (and that is not much) I caught Tavis Smiley and West on iwth Charlie Rose, earlier this week.

The conversation turned to Obama… and -

They def looked pained at times. Esp Tavis. But also West as well. He called himself a “critical supporter”.

hardly matters, we are screwed.

57. marisacat - 28 October 2007

hmmm wasn’t going to bother posting this but then landed at this graf (and nto finished with it, yet):

[H]owever, over the years, unlike in the Vietnam era, the demonstrations shrank, and somehow the anxiety, the anger — though it remained suspended somewhere in the American ether — stopped manifesting itself so publicly, even as the war went on and on. Or put another way, perhaps the anger went deeper and turned inward, like a scouring agent. Perhaps it went all the way into what was left of an American belief system, into despair about the unresponsiveness of the government — with paralyzing effect.

As another potentially more disastrous war with Iran edges into sight, the response has been limited largely to what might be called the professional demonstrators. The surge of hope, of visual creativity, of spontaneous interaction, of the urge to turn out, that arose in those prewar demonstrations now seemed so long gone, replaced by a far more powerful sense that nothing anyone could do mattered in the least.

Tom Englehardt went to the march in NYC…

I would add, it is a very different war. Just as wrong, just as illegal (IMO) just as invasive… genocidal imo, but different – inevitably, as it followed Vietnam. To me, there is no question, no debate, no “coming back” from this, no [stupid and fucked as this language was and is] “taking the country back”, etc. The ugly hideous gibberish of “mismanaged”.

Thsi is who we are. Nowhere to hide, if you are still sane, that is.

58. Revisionist - 28 October 2007

hey yall –

thought i should say hi since I posted here daily for a while. I got that job I was moaning about a couple of weeks back. The brought me in for a second interview but it was really to make me and offer and start me working.

Since I had no “recent references” they put me on this bullshit probation (most of my refererences are principals or at least 1 level down. shit), paying me a bullshit hourly wage. IN the past I would have said FUCK THAT. but I needed the money. So even if it was just for a month it was better than no money. Anyway, they really liked my first two assignments. which were really just tests. and brought on for real on my 3rd day.

Its a good match for my skills. But I dont even know my title. I am doing “special” projects. I may — lol — be launching some blogs for them. (do you have any experience with blogs?). I am making $10-20K less than I should but once I know more about their business I can renegotiate.

That is the worse part of really needing work. You are in no position to negotiate.

So anyway. I am approaching a normal routine again and im busy. I just dont have the bandwith to keep up with multiple sites. God and I might get my computer fixed so I can play games again! I dont usually do this GBCW shit but since this site has a low posting pop I thought it the polite thing to do.

I also have to become more familiar with our client list so i know who not to make fun of.

59. marisacat - 28 October 2007

and brought on for real on my 3rd day.

Think of it this way: they were kind. I would assume in the work atmosphere these days, it might have been longer.

Good luck out there. Wear a winter coat and bundle up!

60. Hair Club for Men - 28 October 2007

Speaking of Vampires, Holy Shit, would someone stake this guy?

http://news.yahoo.com/s/mcclatchy/20071028/wl_mcclatchy/20071028bcusiraqchalabi_attn_national_foreign_editor_ytop

BAGHDAD- Ahmad Chalabi , the controversial, ubiquitous Iraqi politician and one-time Bush administration favorite, has re-emerged as a central figure in the latest U.S. strategy for Iraq .

Wood. In the Heart. Please.

61. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

I would add, it is a very different war. Just as wrong, just as illegal (IMO) just as invasive… genocidal imo, but different – inevitably, as it followed Vietnam.

Yup, that’s it … we’re freely choosing to do this shit, knowing better.

It’s painfully clear that what anybody, without a large amount of money anyway, thinks isn’t important.

62. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

congrats Revisionist!

63. Hair Club for Men - 28 October 2007

Tom Englehardt went to the march in NYC…

Excellent article in some ways. He hits on all the problems. But it’s also disjointed and long winded. He has no answers.

But I’m glad to see he’s thinking along the same lines as I am.

64. marisacat - 28 October 2007

he is always long winded… I scan his stuff mostly. And sometimes find some of his stuff (where he intros other writers) to be useful for links i missed on certan issues.

I signed up for his emails years ago… and find enough to not unsub..

65. Miss Devore - 28 October 2007

well, Rev, i was going to congrat you on the job, but I think this is less than gracious:

“So anyway. I am approaching a normal routine again and im busy. I just dont have the bandwith to keep up with multiple sites. God and I might get my computer fixed so I can play games again! I dont usually do this GBCW shit but since this site has a low posting pop I thought it the polite thing to do.”

IMO. maybe it’s just clumsy.

this is the future…..”I don’t have enough bandwith for you…”

66. marisacat - 28 October 2007

well… Miss D

Not to worry… it was a jumble of paragraphs with a lot of run-on thoughts. Revisionist seemed to think it was an important comment he neded or wanted to make.

As I said, bundle up out there. General weather advisory.

67. bayprairie - 28 October 2007

thought i should say hi since I posted here daily for a while. I got that job I was moaning about a couple of weeks back.

well i’ll delurk and offer congratulations! i had noticed you not being around as much.

put on my cancer-survivor hat now. careful about knocking that hourly wage position, you might grow to like it if the hours are kinder. i spent years salaried, plus percent of the gross for several years, and i like my slacker-hourly better than my previous workaholic life. so what if the funding isn’t as great? salary’s often an excuse to force one to pull 60s. on hours, especially if you get time and a half after 40, they’ll usually chase you out and work the salary types OT.

personal time is limited, and more precious than just about anything, other than maybe those you love and your respect for yourself. time spent slaving for some idiot corp is personal time being traded. we all have to trade some. but keep as much as possible. once its gone, you never get it back.

68. moiv - 28 October 2007

Wise words, bay. The older I get, the more “my” time is worth. Some money is just too expensive to make.

That being said, best of luck with the new gig, Rev.

69. Miss Devore - 28 October 2007

66-funny, I met a young woman who is studying to be a meterologist–very impressive. and she has no taste for being a TV one, which she considers the lowest rung.

The LOL highlights of this weekend for me, which involved packing and defrosting refrigerator (hateful), is that several times I freaked myself out by accidentally stepping on the bubble wrap lying on the floor.

In other areas of intrigue, I watched an almost physically violent encounter between 2 guys on the used car lot. It ended with one party relinquishing keys. It seems that party lived in the trailer on the property, and I observed all the feral cats swirling about the trailer when it happened, some going in the trailer.

The trend is that they always boot the cat sympathizers out.

Reporting, barely alive, from an undisclosed location.

70. bayprairie - 28 October 2007

well miss devore, someone must have told you to jump, cause i was just over at myleftnutmeg and don’t see anything of you at all.

while i was there though i did see this rather humorous bit.

Fuck you, Stu (9.00 / 1)

Meteor Blades has done more for justice and equality than you will ever do if you lived four lifetimes.

Until you have done the equivalent of:

Going into the heart of 1964 Mississippi to register black voters (he was there when Goodman, Chaney, and Schwerner were murdered–three people who I also assume are “dumbells” or “liberal fascists” in whatever freakish world is encompassed by your skull);

Getting your head broken at the 1968 Chicago convention;

Spending a night in jail with Abbie Hoffman;

Having a weekly (monthly?) ritual where you read the names of the Iraq war dead out loud in a public area to force people to understand the cost;

and any number of other things I’m doubtless forgetting and/or unaware of;

:::snip:::

by: Raybin @ Sun Oct 28, 2007 at 12:02:24 PM CST

:::snickering::: hey rabin. you left out the AIM stuff… i’m chure i’ve seen him going on about that…

he does go on.

71. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 October 2007

He has no answers.

I don’t think anybody does. I don’t think we’re at a place for answers yet. No one is asking the right questions, we’re using a vocabulary for an old world, and old war, and old shared belief system.

I think a lot more chaos and conflict is going to have to happen before a real political discussions, real solutions can happen.

72. bayprairie - 28 October 2007

i think i got sent to spam.

i mentioned the MB word! haha

73. marisacat - 28 October 2007

70

LOL someone sent me the Raybin comment this am. He left out quite a lot.

No wonder I long ago decided, MB had been at TOO many hot spots, for my comfort level.

74. marisacat - 28 October 2007

hell.. millions think electing Hillary (or Obama or Edwards) is an ansewr. They cannot let go, or softer less angst driven imperial war (pounded out from a Democrat) is fine iwth them. And really, most Democrats roll over and go to sleep when a Democrat goes in.

And for months it, whatever the outcome of the election, will be presented as The Answer.

75. Miss Devore - 28 October 2007

70-maybe because my last post was in september. and only post in some time.

76. Hair Club for Men - 28 October 2007

and any number of other things I’m doubtless forgetting and/or unaware of;

Left out crossing the Delaware with George Washington and liberating Auschwitz with Ronald Reagan.

77. bayprairie - 28 October 2007

moiv said

The older I get, the more “my” time is worth.

if i could give you some of mine, i would. the time you spend on work is very well spent. you help ease the fears, and i’m sure in many cases, the suffering of others.

pity i can’t.

78. moiv - 28 October 2007

The eternal verities comfort us in their immutability.

And George Will is still a tool and an idiot.

Almost 35 years have passed since the Supreme Court decided to end America’s argument about abortion. Because of the court’s supposedly therapeutic intervention in the nation’s supposedly inadequate democratic debate about that subject, the issue still generates an irritable irrationality that was largely absent before 1973.

[:::]

So, the overturning of Roe might not result from a Republican president’s alteration of the court’s balance. But suppose it did.

Again, so what? Many, perhaps most, Americans, foggy about the workings of their government, think that overturning Roe would make abortion, one of the nation’s most common surgical procedures, illegal everywhere. All it actually would do is restore abortion as a practice subject to state regulation. But because Californians are content with current abortion law, their legislature probably would adopt it in state law.

It is not irrational for voters to care deeply about a candidate’s stance regarding abortion because that stance is accurately considered an important signifier of the candidate’s sensibilities and sympathies, and of his or her notion of sound constitutional reasoning. But regarding abortion itself, what a candidate thinks about abortion rights is not especially important.

In the snipped-out text, he explains why it’s “irrational” for Californians to worry about electing a pro-choice president. Because, you know … it’s just not important.

79. marisacat - 28 October 2007

I heard someone the other night, very sanguine, that it is all but certain that abortion will devolve to the States. It was Toobin on Charlie Rose.

He said it would [no shock] come down hardest on poor women, but that middle class women could go “a state over”. Abortion “would still be available”.

Blew me away, just because it wsa so matter of fact, not that I was surprised at the assessment. For a few years now it seems, it is all but decided. Both parties are comfy wumfy, let it revert to the states.

Think Charlie made some ignorant statement about “just issues of late term”…

Lordy. As though either knew anything.

80. moiv - 28 October 2007

Ah, “just issues of late term” … yeah, there’s always that.

People have no idea of how many women are shocked to the core when they learn that their fetuses are fatally flawed, and then find out that they’ll have to carry them for another five months and watch them die with their first breaths — because their OBs “just don’t do that,” and the hospitals won’t permit an abortion anyway, not so long as there are discernible fetal heart tones.

Then the OBs — clueless as Charlie (or Obama, for that matter) — tell them to call a clinic. Because even almost four years after the law changed, most OB/GYNs in Texas still don’t know that licensed clinics can’t provide care for women after 15 weeks of pregnancy.

The pundits are clueless, but they like it that way, so that they can continue to administer soothing lies. All the anesthesia we’re going to get.

81. wu ming - 28 October 2007

that’s the reason we’re all on edge, madman, and i suspect one underlying why we tend to jump all over one another in the middle of political discussions, because we know, deep down, that there is no answer.

it’s so hard to accept, and i’ll admit to grasping at straws for vain hope from time to time. this country is such a hard thing to look in the eye, when you care about people, and have a lot to lose.

82. wu ming - 28 October 2007

i wonder if any of those pundits opining on the ease of “driving a state over” have ever tried to drive from state to state west of the rockies. i mean, those little states are close together next to NYC, perhaps, but that’s a long day’s drive out here, and will get far worse if it gets sent down to the states in huge swaths of this country.

not that it isn’t already pretty much that way in a practical sense, of course.

83. moiv - 28 October 2007

Not only that, but it will more likely be several states over. Another aspect of regulation that people ignore — in both senses of the word — is that the key to the severity of restriction is federal court districts. Most states within a given district tend to adopt quite similar statutes.

That’s how Texas ended up with the same law, word for word, as Mississippi. After the Mississippi law was upheld by the 5th District in New Orleans, the coast was clear to pass the same measure in other states within that district without fear of incurring heavy expenses to defend a legal challenge.

But facts are such a downer, so let’s not let them get in the way of expert political commentary.

84. moiv - 28 October 2007

Looks like Hillary’s not the only one taking bucks from the usual suspects: Lieberman Contributions Being Investigated by the FBI.

85. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

wu ming

the only hopeful sign is that some of the right’s language is breaking down too. The cognitive dissonance of that movement using terms like “freedom” and “family values” and “compassionate conservatism” is becoming harder and harder to ignore. Katrina and falling bridges and hypocrite preachers and politicians make it all increasingly empty. I’m not at the happy place indicated by the recent spate of stories about how the evangelical right is breaking down … the process will take some time … but it is increasingly ineffective in a broad sense. Unfortunately, that end of the spectrum tends to be better able to stick together as a bloc, which gives them power in a society as fractured as this one, so they’ll still exert some influence for quite sometime.

Meanwhile, what we’re left with mostly is a kind of broken feudalism, akin to factions at the English court in Elizabethan times or the Roman nobility in the time leading up to Julius Caesar’s return to Rome, wealthy factions scrabbling over a pile of treasure that they’ve stolen from everybody else as privation spreads elsewhere.

Anyway, I don’t think it’s fair to say that someone has no “answers” now. We’re cut into tiny demographic slices, left with a language swimming in PR distortions, so I’m just glad when people raise the questions. Enough questions are asked, for long enough, and answers and the words to express them will arise eventually. It’s just going to take some time, and a lot of pain and conflict.

86. marisacat - 29 October 2007

Pepe Escobar in ATimes:

To say this is all part of a “structural crisis” between Turkey and the US would be the understatement of the century. Turkey is actually deciding nothing less than its real geopolitical position in a mesmerizing balancing act involving Iran, Israel, the Arab world, Europe, Russia and the US.

Washington has been endlessly telegraphed about Ankara’s intentions. Erdogan has already told US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice there’s only one way to prevent a Turkish invasion: US special forces must grab the 150 or so top Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leaders holed up in the Qandil mountains in Iraqi Kurdistan and deliver them on a silver platter to Ankara.

The US commander in Iraqi Kurdistan, Major General Benjamin Mixon, has already volunteered his answer to this request:

the US will do “absolutely nothing” about it. Thus the rumors about the arsenal of alternative US tactics – like “precision” cruise missile bombing of PKK camps in the mountains, of course duly authorized by the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) and the central government in Baghdad.

87. aemd - 29 October 2007

Interesting article from Bloomberg on the US dollar…

“These things start out slowly, and in recent months I have had similar experiences from Mexico to Vietnam. In markets, restaurants, taxis and tourist shops that long accepted dollars, many are opting for local currency. The reason: concerns the dollar plunge that analysts have predicted for years is afoot and that the U.S. is uninterested in halting it.”

Bloomberg link

Via The Housing Bubble Blog

LINK

88. marisacat - 29 October 2007

oh in case anyone cares, the “old” Obama will be on the DeGeneres show (today?)… it was pre taped.

What is a campaign to do, the “old” Obama in a can, the “new” Obama flailing around iwth, still, weak language (in that breakthru publication, NYT).

What a primary (not).

89. marisacat - 29 October 2007

87

shift out of US markets… LOL do it retroactively if possible…

8)

90. Intermittent Bystander - 29 October 2007

Major Obama-slammin’ meltdown at the BBBs today, starting with Aravosis, who picks up on the NYT Caucus blog’s description of “ex-gay” gospel singer McClurkin’s performance last night in SC.

From the NYT Caucus:

He approached the subject gingerly at first. Then, just when the concert had seemed to reach its pitch and about to end, Mr. McClurkin returned to it with a full-blown plea: “Don’t call me a bigot or anti-gay when I have suffered the same feelings,” he cried.

“God delivered me from homosexuality,” he added. He then told the audience to believe the Bible over the blogs: “God is the only way.” The crowd sang and clapped along in full support.

The political implications of his performance are not clear. The concert-goers we talked with afterward were generally more focused on making allowances for Mr. McClurkin’s past homosexuality than on anything about Mr. Obama.

Sez Aravosis:

Obama’s anti-gay religious right activist used the opportunity Obama gave him last night to preach his hate to thousands of African-Americans. That’s just great. And the white preacher who Obama picked to help explain to the audience that gays aren’t minions of Satan? CNN reports that he said nothing at all – just a short little prayer, then he left. As for Obama, he did a taped introduction in which he praised McClurkin, the religious right activist, as one of his favorites. That’s nice, because the way to help combat homophobia in the black community is to make sure the gay-basher is first endorsed by someone as high-ranking as Obama, who then chooses to say nothing about the gay-bashing.

kos links to Aravosis on the FP and sez:

It’s an all-out implosion by the Obama campaign. This truly is indefensible.

600 comments and counting. Diaries ruling out Obama are underway.

So . . . 98 bottles of beer on the wall?

91. Hair Club for Men - 29 October 2007

Re: The Two State Solution Debate on PFF

It’s just another Kos flame war thanks to the terrible trio of twits (David Byron, Ender, and Moon)

I get Ender and Moon. They want to turn up the volume and level of acrimony up so high you can’t have an intelligent debate on the I/P issue.

But I don’t get Byron. He claims to be anti-zionist. He’s slinging around anti-semitic slurs and personal attacks (even against his fellow anti-zionists) so furiously it’s almost as if he’s just a sockpuppet for Moon and Ender.

I guess he’s just an asshole.

92. Hair Club for Men - 29 October 2007

Obama and his critics.

Dumb and Dumber

93. BooHooHooMan - 29 October 2007

I just saw a CNN Graphic “How to Spot Autism” that segued into a pic
of Bush AG Nom Markasey. The new graphic title: “Torture Talk”

Now gush about troops in Iraq sending donations back to Camp Pendelton . Who comes up with this PR slop. ‘Bout have had all the pablum I can eat…

94. BooHooHooMan - 29 October 2007

*Mukasey*

95. sabrina - 29 October 2007

Mukasey should be blocked. But then Bush will just find someone worse. And whoever that is should be blocked also and they should keep doing that until he is forced to find someone acceptable or leave the job empty as we are better off with no one there than anyone he might choose.

Re Obama – Harvey Milk wrote a diary with blackface images and text that was pretty bad last night. That generated two more diaries, one an apology from him and one from KO asking for him to be banned. Each diary had around 800 comments.

Obama supporters and Edwards supporters are battling it out in the threads. This two year election season is just ridiculous. They should pass a law that the presidential election should be no longer than 6 months. I think the only people paying attention to it are political operatives.

96. Miss Devore - 29 October 2007

yum?

Sibel Emonds will spill all beans if any TV media outlet will let her spill all:

http://www.bradblog.com/?p=5197

97. marisacat - 29 October 2007

well the media is loaded with various levels of Obama chit chat, stalled campaign, etc.

I read the portions of the interview in the NYT. A joke. The most passive language I have ever read from the “runner up”.

Seems the moment that all turn on Obama and Hillary gets her wings to leave the Brownies and become a Girl Scout.

Is anyone surprised?

98. lucid - 29 October 2007

I guess he’s just an asshole.

Understatement of the year award…

99. marisacat - 29 October 2007

91

people are being treated to the full DavidByron over at PFF. As I said earlier, he is snorting clover.

Sorry to be rude, I banned hm before I opened. He takes over.

100. lucid - 29 October 2007

They should pass a law that the presidential election should be no longer than 6 months.

But that would keep the pols from being able to distract everyone from the crappy shit they do between election cycles. We can’t have the people aware of what is actually going on now can we?

101. lucid - 29 October 2007

sorry – missed a slash or sumthin in the blockquote.

102. marisacat - 29 October 2007

I think elections are a creature now, fully, of the media/entertainment industry… and it suits the people that pols front for.

If the nation ever really wanted public financed and limited elections, well… toooooooooooo late now.

Not that the public ever did. Some did, most were oblivious.

103. BooHooHooMan - 29 October 2007

97 Mcat Seems the moment that all turn on Obama and Hillary gets her wings..

All that’s missing is the “ding” sound. Wings , Bling, what more could she ask for?

On Second thought…..

104. marisacat - 29 October 2007

Miss D

I would love it if Sibel got an hour or so in interview…

Last I saw that it ws Deborah Norville on her long gone show on MSNBC. A full hour for Sibel… n ot the only good show Norville managed.

105. BooHooHooMan - 29 October 2007

When Hill gets the her real wings — anyone think she gets her own Commander in Chief Animated Gif Fairy? Kinda like MSOC’s but with a nuclear wand??

106. lucid - 29 October 2007

Well Hill’s theme song was a commercial for Air Canada, no? She probably already has her wings.

107. marisacat - 29 October 2007

well her GE confidential intell briefings should be a hoot.

Oh I think for Hill the ”wings” are the nuclear codes. Same as for Bush.

108. sabrina - 29 October 2007

Oh, I hope someone has the courage to let Sibel speak. But I doubt it. In the past, 60 minutes probably would do it, but not anymore.

Marisacat, sadly, I think you’re right regarding elections. But who’s paying attention? The debates are not even being watched by many political junkies anymore. The ratings must be abysmal. What can they say they haven’t said over and over again and none of it is very encouraging.

I’m not sure this will ruin Obama. Most of America probably won’t even know it happened, and if it is reported on the news, it will not be explained very well. People will just hear that some black minister is anti-gay and Obama invited him to campaign for him.

What he should do, is to call a press conference and condemn what was said. At least he’d get on the air, and most people would probably sympathize with him. So far, the campaign has said nothing.

We;ll have to see if it affects his poll numbers, but I don’t think it will.

Bhhm, maybe Hillary will ask him to be VP. If she does, the party will explain away this incident. If they don’t defend him he’ll know he’s out of the race. It’s not the people who will decide, it’s the Paryt, imo.

109. marisacat - 29 October 2007

hmmm shouldn’t the interview with a mcclurkin [ex]lover go high profile about now???

it is very salacious,

110. bayprairie - 29 October 2007

HC said:

But I don’t get Byron.

:::snip:::

I guess he’s just an asshole.

put an MRA in front of asshole and i think you’ve just about got him nailed.

111. BooHooHooMan - 29 October 2007

So Sibel’s Libel but the Mob were really SCLC…..

This ~girl~ is going to tell all on all the boys playin dress up in the FBI. Whats a guy to do? Get another girl….

While you’re at it, ya might as well roll out the Special Agent Gene Hackman mythology— ya know — the one where the FBI SA’s (no irony there) we’re so “burned up” down Mississippi that, ‘ginst “all odds” those tireless fighters demanded and got justice done! ….[Splarf!]

AP News: Mob FBI Agent

Mob Girlfriend Testifies at FBI Trial
By TOM HAYS, AP
Seconds ago

NEW YORK —

A mobster-turned-informant was recruited by the FBI to help find bodies of slain civil rights workers in Mississippi and got information at gunpoint, the gangster’s former girlfriend testified Monday at the murder trial of a former FBI agent.

Linda Schiro testified at the trial of one-time FBI agent R. Lindley DeVecchio, who is accused of secretly aligning himself with mobster Gregory Scarpa Sr., an informant within one of the warring factions of the Colombo crime family.

She testified that she went to Mississippi in 1964 after Scarpa was recruited by the FBI to help find the bodies of slain civil rights workers.

She said she witnessed an FBI agent delivering a gun and a wad of cash to Scarpa in their Mississippi hotel room.

Scarpa later told her he had forced someone to reveal the location of the workers’ bodies by “putting a gun in the guy’s mouth and threatening him,” said Schiro.

DeVecchio didn’t become Scarpa’s FBI “handler” until 1978….{snip}

112. BooHooHooMan - 29 October 2007

Mcat! Help! I’ve fallen! And I can’t HTML fer shit!

113. Intermittent Bystander - 29 October 2007

What’s an MRA?

I’m starting to think of him as a barnacle.

Barnacle Byron, Web Sailor.

Papal update: Benny talks Rx.

114. marisacat - 29 October 2007

hmm I took a look. From the derivative diary at PFF, I am actually sorry I missed the Harvey Milk diary. Not sorry I missed Kid O as race interlocutor – again.
But then…………………. enh..

Not only is Byron snorting clover [seems he is now, fully, publicly fixated on his penis, in comments to ms xeno], but so is donkeytale… and I spy a boy programmer melt down in the crawdaddie squirm sewer.

But — must go, the cat is throwing up…

8)

115. marisacat - 29 October 2007

BHHM –

think I fixed the comment… or at least did what little i Know…

116. marisacat - 29 October 2007

IB – 113

I don’t know what “MRA” stands for, but i see it used, so it might be in some sort of acronym listing online…
;)

117. Intermittent Bystander - 29 October 2007

I did try acronyms, and got

Magnetic Resonance Angiography
Minimum Retirement Age
Mutual Recognition Arrangement

But Urban Dictionary has just informed me it’s
Mens’ Rights Activist.

Doubt he’s doing many favors for the cause. . . .

118. marisacat - 29 October 2007

hmmm Mens Rights Activist… so logical and i never would have guessed it.

Byron is a strange one. He careens from visibly out of control to oozing and unctious. Very distasteful. And he has been at this for years.

I think, just a guess, he has some serious history tho, at least online. For a while, tho “banned” – meaning he just wnt to Moderation and stayed there – he was leaving comments, special little messages for me. I, just for the act of doing it, threatened to contact his ISP (right, a useless threat)… but he disappeared immediately and stopped his comments that went straight to Moderation…

Odd guy.

119. Hair Club for Men - 29 October 2007

hmmm Mens Rights Activist… so logical and i never would have guessed it.

He probably is but not much of that’s going to come out in an I/P thread.

There’s a real debate to be had over whether a two state solution to the I/P problem is feasible (especially since we’re going to see a lot of fake two state solutions coming down the pike if the Clintons get back into power) but the thread quickly degenerated into a pissing much between Moon/Ender and Byron.

For Byron, anything except 100% agreement with him means you’re an Arab hater. And he likes to make anti-semitic statements to show that by golly he can and no-one’s going to stop him.

http://politicalfleshfeast.com/viewRating.do?rateCommentId=40300

What is that? (0.00 / 0)
“evil greedy banker joooos”, a triple redundancy?

by DavidByron @ Sun Oct 28, 2007 at 18:21:08 PM PDT

He seems slightly more intelligent than Ender but not much. Ender, of course, is just as racist.

http://politicalfleshfeast.com/showComment.do?commentId=40282

I’ll just say that I am amused that anyone here thinks Israel will somehow be defeated by your islamonazi darlings in the near future. You will die of old age still dreaming that.

Funny thing is that I can see why Ender would be hostile towards me because I was expressing a rather extreme anti-zionist point of view but I don’t get Byron.

120. Hair Club for Men - 29 October 2007

WOA!!!!

Look for major Media Matters outrage over the next few days.

Here’s what Pat Buchanan said on Hardball.

Barack Obama is not a street fighter. He just doesn’t act like a black guy from Chicago. He acts like an Ivy Leaguer.

And Tweety didn’t call him on it.

121. marisacat - 29 October 2007

Byron just plays people… I am unsure any issue matters to him.

I pointed out to DB, over at MoBetta Meta when he pyrrho and supersoling were holding conventions to bash me, that ANTI FEMINIST sites have banned him, he is pathological. He crescendoes to out of control.

122. marisacat - 29 October 2007

well… Tavis and West said virtually the same thing the other night to Charlie, they explained the whole “not black” rhetoric, esp as rises from BLACKS to Charlie.

It is a shout out, that Obama is not authentic.

Going back to Ehrenstein’s Magical Negro piece in the LAT, I agree.

Of course white boy Edwards and Ma’am Bitch are no more authentic either.

and so on.

123. Hair Club for Men - 29 October 2007

Byron just plays people… I am unsure any issue matters to him.

I’m kind of seeing a 300 pound Unix geek with bad personal hygiene and a bad toothache he’s afraid to go to the dentist to get fixed.

124. Intermittent Bystander - 29 October 2007

Charges Uncertain in Blackwater Shooting (AP):

The State Department promised Blackwater USA bodyguards immunity from prosecution in its investigation of last month’s deadly shooting of 17 Iraqi civilians, The Associated Press has learned.

Three senior law enforcement officials said all the Blackwater bodyguards involved — both in the vehicle convoy and in at least two helicopters above — were given the legal protections as investigators from the Bureau of Diplomatic Security sought to find out what happened. The bureau is an arm of the State Department.

The FBI took over the case early this month, officials said, after prosecutors in the Justice Department’s criminal division realized it could not bring charges against Blackwater guards based on their statements to the Diplomatic Security investigators.

Officials said the Blackwater bodyguards spoke only after receiving so-called “Garrity” protections, requiring that their statements only be used internally — and not for criminal prosecutions.

At that point, the Justice Department shifted the investigation to prosecutors in its national security division, sealing the guards’ statements and attempting to build a case based on other evidence from a crime scene that was then already two weeks old.

125. marisacat - 29 October 2007

Between Ratz-zinger issuing dispensations for Catholics to not sell birth control – and Eric Prince and his thugs replacing home grown and trained NG in the states… why I see a lovely future for america.

Just caught the senior Podhoretz on with Fareed [who capitulated so much in the early years of this decade that he is leonine dog meat] on TNH. Podhoretz invoked Hitler 5 times in connection to Iran. Fucking little creep.

I just dispense iwth the holocaust, dispense with the survivors – all of it. I am sick to death of israel supporting Jews using all those deaths.

************

Pyrrho: Fuck off. Stop smoking badly and typing. It clearly is too much for you.

126. Intermittent Bystander - 29 October 2007

Interesting article (at a new, Iranian section of the Institute for War and Peace Reporting’s website) on changes in Iran’s Revolutionary Guard as a result of the US accusations that it’s a terra organization: Iran Responds to US ‘Warmongering’.

On September 1 – two weeks after leaked reports first emerged in the US media that the Bush administration planned to blacklist the Revolutionary Guards – IRGC commander Yahya Rahim Safavi was replaced by Mohammad Ali Aziz Jafari, the former head of the Guards’ Strategy Centre.

Safavi, who had held the post for a decade, is now special military advisor to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

The timing of Jafari’s appointment –announced quite suddenly, on the eve of a holiday – led observers to interpret it as a move to reorganise the Guards both in terms of structure and direction ahead of any US-led hostilities.

The change of leadership was only the start of a restructuring process, which accelerated after the US Senate vote.

The biggest change is that the Basij Resistance Force – a volunteer paramilitary force which was previously affiliated with the IRGC but operated under the direct supervision of the Supreme Leader – has been merged with the Revolutionary Guards.

The Basij, which maintains a formal presence in all government offices, schools, universities, trade associations, hospitals and factories – has an estimated ten million members. The movement is drawn from the young, and includes school pupils, students, civil servants and other workers. Many join to benefit from the organisation’s cultural and welfare facilities.

The incorporation of the massive Basij membership has meant a massive increase in the Revolutionary Guards’ numbers. This broadens the base for anti-US sentiment in the event that Washington goes ahead with plans to blacklist the IRGC, since all these people could potentially be designated “terrorists” by the US.

Talk of the US blacklisting the IRGC has, for once, united the warring political factions in Iran, with reformers joining the conservative “principalists” to condemn the decision.

127. marisacat - 29 October 2007

hmm thanks for that link IB

Podhoretz said, when asked directly by Judy Woodruff, that he “knows” that Bush will “bomb Iran before leaving office”.

What a stew we are in.

128. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

I’m not familiar with this website, so I don’t know how careful they are, but this is interesting

A MadCowMorningNews investigation has uncovered links between the ownership of the drug-running Gulfstream (Cocaine Two) and the other American-registered plane busted carrying a multi-ton load of cocaine in Mexico recently, the DC9 (Cocaine One) airliner caught with 5.5 tons of cocaine in Mexico 18 months ago.

Recently-released FAA records from the Gulfstream II business jet that went down in Mexico a month ago with four tons of cocaine reveal that before it was “parked” in the name of a New York real estate developer with ties to the Russian Mob, the plane was owned by a secretive Midwestern media baron and Republican fund-raiser, who had a business partner who, incredibly, owned the other American drug plane, the DC9, recently busted in Mexico.

Adams was in business with Miami attorney Michael Farkas, who founded SkyWay Aircraft, which owned the DC9 busted in Mexico 18 months ago with 5.5 tons of cocaine aboard.

Moreover at the same time the Bush Ranger extraordinaire Stephen Adams owned the Gulfstream (N987SA) in 1999 and 2000, he was personally buying over $1 million of billboard ads for George W. Bush for his 2000 Presidential election bid.

129. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

Welcome to America. Now spread ‘em!

Consider an incident that occurred last month at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. On that day, a gang of probably bored ICE (Immigration and Custom Enforcement) agents decided that a party of Finnish musicians and filmmakers here to embark on a free tour of the Upper Midwest – at the invitation of the University of Minnesota, no less — were drug smugglers, no doubt about it, based solely on the fact that the group had flown in from Amsterdam and one of their party is a long-haired male. And if not drug smugglers, then at the very least they must have been trying to sneak into the U.S. to find work without the proper visas.

The Finns’ ordeal began when they were waiting in line to clear customs. In a variation on the Shock and Awe methods so beloved by the Bush Administration, an ICE agent approached the long-haired male musician and began jabbing his finger into the poor guy’s face and screaming, “You’re a criminal! Don’t deny it! We know you’re a criminal!” The musician, whose English is limited, tried to explain what he was doing in the country, but to no avail. The agent went on with the tantrum.

[...]

For the next three and a-half hours the members of the group were separated and placed in interrogation rooms where they were screamed at, threatened with jail if they did not “confess,” and lied to by agents claiming that other members of the party had already confessed to unspecified offenses. In retaliation for claiming that he might have some legal, or at least human rights the agents were infringing upon, the ICE goons not only started bellowing “You have no rights! You have no rights” at one of the Finns but also ordered the offending fellow to strip naked and subjected him to a full-body cavity search.

The whole ordeal finally came to an end in a way that suggests the utterly haphazard nature of our border security: another international flight arrived and the ICE agents had to turn their attention elsewhere. The Finns were released without explanation or apology.

Perhaps the most damning comment on the incident was delivered by the Finn who was strip-searched. On a couple of occasions prior to 1991, he was detained by the KGB and interrogated. Compared to the ICE agents here in the Twin Cities, the KGB operatives, he says, “at least acted like human beings. Not a bunch of animals.”

Needless to say, the artists were traumatized by their experience of American hospitality. None express any interest in returning to this country for any reason. Can’t imagine why…

130. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

ooops, there should have been a break btwn the second and third paragraphs above … there is more detail at the link in between those two sections.

[I inserted [...] above ———- Mcat]

131. Intermittent Bystander - 29 October 2007

My newest form of meditation to withstand the daily headlines is watching yootoob footage of raccoons.

No doubt this has something to do with the fact that my first non-human friend was a baby raccoon, a rescue critter that landed with the family for a while. I’m told that as infants, me and the raccoon were allowed to hang out on the floor and play. Years later, at a different home, a raccoon family would visit for nightly leftovers and eventually accepted M&Ms and fruit by hand.

These folks are hosting quite a regular feast for their local band of bandits: Raccoon Table Manners.

There’s something reassuring about seeing healthy scavengers, I guess. Their faces make a nice change from humanity’s visage, too. ;)

132. marisacat - 29 October 2007

well hte poor Finns happened to be at Customs and Immigration+ICE+Homeland Seurity… but best to consider airports and surrounding areas free fire zones. For everybody.

Soon to be manned by private paramilitaries. Hair triggers and SHoot to Kill orders… I would not be the least surprised.

133. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

ON THE JOB
The fog of work: What happened to Fremont mechanic Hamid Sayadi after 9/11?

A long, sad, shameful tale.

Armstrong says the judge in the case recently urged the parties involved to seek mediation — a move she sees as validation of Sayadi’s allegations. Should the matter be settled out of court, the truth of what happened, or didn’t happen, to Sayadi might never be known. But he wouldn’t be the first to be harassed after 9/11 — a fact Joan Ehrlich, San Francisco’s District Director for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, knows all too well.

“We’ve had over 1,000 complaints (from Arabs, South Asians and Muslims in general) since 9/11,” Ehrlich says. “It’s an intolerable situation. It’s unlawful. Everybody has a right not to be harassed on the job. A strong manager can stop it.”

Ehrlich says Sayadi’s accusations sound familiar — the cases she sees regular involve similar name-calling and other insults, and just as often defy logic.

“It doesn’t make any sense,” she says upon hearing about Sayadi’s case in particular. “The guy’s been there over a decade and suddenly he’s a security problem?”

Chris Martinez, law manager at the Law Offices of Mayor Joseph L. Alioto and Angela Alioto, confirmed that his firm had represented “several discrimination cases against NUMMI over the years.” All settled out of court, Martinez said.

134. ms_xeno - 29 October 2007

… I am unsure any issue matters to him…

Yep. The manipulative hot/cold routine is pretty obvious.

Oh, and I can’t decide who’s the bigger annoying PFF blowhard: AG or Jules. Maybe it’s me who’s crazy. I worry that I’m self-aggrandizing just for saying that I sold a picture twice this year. Neither of these guys can type ten words without promoting himself and all the glorious, wonderful things he’s doing every six minutes. It’s more than a little puzzling. Who uses obscure political blogs to promote themselves this way, to this extreme ? Hell, guys. Buy some banner ads. Buy some spam. From what I’ve seen of your personalities, the less of yourselves you inject into the mix, the more product you’re likely to move.

Gevalt. :/

135. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

found it linked thru Orcinus … this is a great slapdown of Lou Dobb’s racist demagoguery

I am a human pileup of illegality. I am an illegal driver and an illegal parker and even an illegal walker, having at various times stretched or broken various laws and regulations that govern those parts of life. The offenses were trivial, and I feel sure I could endure the punishments — penalties and fines — and get on with my life. Nobody would deny me the chance to rehabilitate myself. Look at Martha Stewart, illegal stock trader, and George Steinbrenner, illegal campaign donor, to name two illegals whose crimes exceeded mine.

Good thing I am not an illegal immigrant. There is no way out of that trap. It’s the crime you can’t make amends for. Nothing short of deportation will free you from it, such is the mood of the country today. And that is a problem.

America has a big problem with illegal immigration, but a big part of it stems from the word “illegal.” It pollutes the debate. It blocks solutions. Used dispassionately and technically, there is nothing wrong with it. Used as an irreducible modifier for a large and largely decent group of people, it is badly damaging. And as a code word for racial and ethnic hatred, it is detestable.

Meanwhile, out on the edges of the debate — edges that are coming closer to the mainstream every day — bigots pour all their loathing of Spanish-speaking people into the word. Rant about “illegals” — call them congenital criminals, lepers, thieves, unclean — and people will nod and applaud. They will send money to your Web site and heed your calls to deluge lawmakers with phone calls and faxes. Your TV ratings will go way up.

This is not only ugly, it is counterproductive, paralyzing any effort toward immigration reform. Comprehensive legislation in Congress and sensible policies at the state and local level have all been stymied and will be forever, as long as anything positive can be branded as “amnesty for illegals.”

We are stuck with a bogus, deceptive strategy — a 700-mile fence on a 2,000-mile border to stop a fraction of border crossers who are only 60 percent of the problem anyway, and scattershot raids to capture a few thousand members of a group of 12 million.

136. marisacat - 29 October 2007

ms xeno — LOL

a couple years ago a wonderful commenter that I don’t see around anymore “susanw” did a reply diary to AG – without naming him. (It was at BMT.) He had a done a quite veiled but nasty diary about women.

She entitled hers “Masterist”.

BULL’S EYE.

137. ms_xeno - 29 October 2007

Sorry I missed it, Mcat.

supervixen is convinced that the syndrome of AG/JS is very much a male thing, but I spent too much time on feminist boards to go along with her. Or maybe she just got a better quality of board. :D DB, too, has his female counterparts out there;Some specimens so remarkable that I flat out refuse to say their names out loud for fear they’ll zero in on this space like wasps around a warming bucket of raw hamburger.

Someday you’ll thank me. ;)

138. marisacat - 29 October 2007

Here it is: Masterist

Some people are in a personal witness protection from reality program, dragging their pathology, various and sundry illnesses, supurating mental illness around the blahgs, netteries and blogs.

Oh wellllllllllll.

139. ms_xeno - 29 October 2007

Thanks. My sort-of volunteer gig starts soon. Will read it in depth later.

Yep, to witness AG in action is to see the historic and continuing sexism of the jazz world made flesh. As a certified jazz snob for so long, I would hope that the guys half his age are carrying half his baggage as well, but who knows for sure… ? :/

Also, I don’t know how my responses to you ended up IN FRONT of the comments they were in response to. Must be a full moon/halloween thing. Sorry.

140. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

On the Road With John McCain: A Video Report by Matt Taibbi

The subtitles he puts under McCain answering one of his questions are priceless. About halfway thru.

141. BooHooHooMan - 29 October 2007

Thanks Mcat, up above

Please note that unlike Pyrrho, I smoke well but only type badly….

142. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

Mayor Rocky Anderson this past Saturday:

In the case of the President and Vice President, this means impeachment and removal from office, without any further delay from a complacent, complicit Congress, the Democratic majority of which cares more about political gain in 2008 than it does about the vindication of our Constitution, the rule of law, and democratic accountability.

It means the election of people as President and Vice President who, unlike most of the presidential candidates from both major parties, have not aided and abetted in the perpetration of the illegal, tragic, devastating invasion and occupation of Iraq. And it means the election of people as President and Vice President who will commit to return our nation to the moral and strategic imperative of refraining from torturing human beings.

In the case of the majority of Congress, it means electing people who are diligent enough to learn the facts, including reading available National Intelligence Estimates, before voting to go to war. It means electing to Congress men and women who will jealously guard Congress’s sole prerogative to declare war. It means electing to Congress men and women who will not submit like vapid lap dogs to presidential requests for blank checks to engage in so-called preemptive wars, for legislation permitting warrantless wiretapping of communications involving US citizens, and for dangerous, irresponsible, saber-rattling legislation like the recent Kyl-Lieberman amendment.

We must avoid the trap of focusing the blame solely upon President Bush and Vice-President Cheney. This is not just about a few people who have wronged our country – and the world. They were enabled by members of both parties in Congress, they were enabled by the pathetic mainstream news media, and, ultimately, they have been enabled by the American people – 40% of whom are so ill-informed they still think Iraq was behind the 9/11 attacks – a people who know and care more about baseball statistics and which drunken starlets are wearing underwear than they know and care about the atrocities being committed every single day in our name by a government for which we need to take responsibility.

143. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

and this:

I implore you: Draw a line. Figure out exactly where your own moral breaking point is. How much will you put up with before you say “No more” and mean it?

I have drawn my line as a matter of simple personal morality: I cannot, and will not, support any candidate who has voted to fund the atrocities in Iraq. I cannot, and will not, support any candidate who will not commit to remove all US troops, as soon as possible, from Iraq. I cannot, and will not, support any candidate who has supported legislation that takes us one step closer to attacking Iran. I cannot, and will not, support any candidate who has not fought to stop the kidnapping, disappearances, and torture being carried on in our name.

If we expect our nation’s elected officials to take us seriously, let us send a powerful message they cannot misunderstand. Let them know we really do have our moral breaking point. Let them know we have drawn a bright line. Let them know they cannot take our support for granted – that, regardless of their party and regardless of other political considerations, they will not have our support if they cannot provide, and have not provided, principled leadership.

The people of this nation may have been far too quiet for five years, but let us pledge that we won’t let it go on one more day – that we will do all we can to put an end to the illegalities, the moral degradation, and the disintegration of our nation’s reputation in the world.

Let us be unified in drawing the line – in declaring that we do have a moral breaking point. Let us insist, together, in supporting our troops and in gratitude for the freedoms for which our veterans gave so much, that we bring our troops home from Iraq, that we return our government to a constitutional democracy, and that we commit to honoring the fundamental principles of human rights.

144. Hair Club for Men - 29 October 2007

Did that woman at the end of the McCain video really say that Muslim cab drivers in New York don’t pick up people who have been drinking?

I realize that Taibbi edited out all the intelligent people and picked out the dumbest South Carolina hicks he could find but Jesus, are people really this dumb?

I really wanted to take her in my arms and reassure her that no, Chelsea and the East Village are currently not living under Sharia law imposed by Pakistani cab drivers.

145. marisacat - 29 October 2007

well the last time Muslim/ME cab drivers went on strike here over refusing ot pick up travellers at the airport [think it was Oakland airport, East Bay] who are visibly carrying alcohol…

so it is def happening, at least here…. Now there ws also a story that the drivers are using that, the real issues are labor or preference issues at the taxi ranks at the airport…

146. marisacat - 29 October 2007

I am sick of all fundies. any type.

147. BooHooHooMan - 29 October 2007

LOL Madman. I resemble that…#146..

148. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

Oh, SF too?

Avoiding drunks in NYC is like trying to avoid air, btw. They’d be out of bizness in no time.

Of course, they’d get along fine w/ all the other cab drivers who refuse to pick up black men.

149. Hair Club for Men - 29 October 2007

well the last time Muslim/ME cab drivers went on strike here over refusing ot pick up travellers at the airport [think it was Oakland airport, East Bay] who are visibly carrying alcohol…

Wouldn’t happen in New York. Rudy Giuliani and the NYPD beat the evil Muslims to the punch. The cops very aggressively ticket people for carrying open containers of alcohol. I’ve already paid two fines for drinking beer out in the open in Washington Square Park. I guess that puts me one 40 oncer away from life in prison.

And while I rarely take cabs I’ve never had a Pakistani cab driver attempt to give me a breathalizer test when I do.

150. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

I’ve actually read or heard rightwing pundits claim that about the cab drivers. Wait, I actually found a story about it, but it was in Minneapolis, not NYC.

From a cultural movement that thinks it’s okay for licensed professionals like pharmacists to deny women lawfully written prescriptions, I find their outrage to be really funny.

Oh, and I doubt he had to do a lot of editing. Americans are fucking benighted idiots, in far greater numbers than most of us want to face. I offer pro wrestling and NASCAR as exhibits 1 and 2, with G. Dubya providing the final argument.

Q.E.D

151. Hair Club for Men - 29 October 2007

You know how racists like to use code words for people they hate so they don’t get caught, like calling Jews “Swedes” or Puerto Ricans “Irish”.

Maybe “drunks” is just the code Pakistani cab drivers in New York have for “African Americans”.

152. Miss Devore - 29 October 2007

bwaking…..Luscious Vagina has conceded all to Hillary…..

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2007/10/29/20181/073

His parents liked her.

153. marisacat - 29 October 2007

well… the East Bay taxi driver mess ended up before a board over there… Not sure if it ws a Oakland board or a county board that oversees the air port.

It was real, as I heard some of the hearings. Now what was REALLY going on under the various stories.. I don’t know. As i posted above, there were indications the drivers were using religion as a bargaining chip of some sort.

And I think there are instances of Muslim docs refusing care to rape victims in ERs.

As I said: FUCK all fundies, I don’t care the country of origin. Home grown or import.

154. Hair Club for Men - 29 October 2007

As I said: FUCK all fundies, I don’t care the country of origin. Home grown or import.

Agreed but not on the basis of urban legends.

I’m not wild about fundi Jews but I’m pretty sure they don’t use Xtian babies to make matzah.

A lot of what these right wing hayseeds believe about Muslims approaches that level of insanity and the real interesting thing is that I doubt any of them have ever even met a Muslim in real life.

155. marisacat - 29 October 2007

I used a lot of E Bay cabs in 2000, 01 and -2… many are Middle Eastern of one country origin or another.

Very gentle lovely people…

And as I said, it appeared there were underlying issues with the airport/alcohol issues.

Of course I don’t support urban legend based (or any other kind) racism and ostracism.

Lordy, we have 170 languages here. The most diverse area in the nation, the 9 BA Coutnies… I have a problem with winger extremist immigrants, esp the wealthy version… fundies of all stripes, home grown and imports, who refuse to serve the public when taking jobs wehre you serve the public.

And white supremacist.

This reminds me of the wealthy muslioms who held up the plane, they had been shopping in Milano and were on the afternoon plane to London. HIRE A FUCKING PLANE. They were on a public conveyance: Go with the flow.

156. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

well, I have no patience for any of the three Abrahamic faiths.

157. BooHooHooMan - 29 October 2007

Now I know Hillary is going to lose if She has the endorsement of
Mr. Cunt Bitch Whore Melrath. A real Class Act.

158. BooHooHooMan - 29 October 2007

Comment Nums jumped aroound a bit.
For Posterity’s sake, my # 147 was referring to madman’s #150
I’ll fill out a Numerical Comment Adjustment Form
and a Post Melrath Ridicule Summary for the Pudliness Archives

159. moiv - 29 October 2007

C’mon, y’all, it was time, and past time, for one of the favored few to do it, and DD just drew the short straw.

160. Miss Devore - 29 October 2007

what kills me about all this resignation to Hill, are the people who say “she’s not going to make a mistake”

which I guess supports the perception of her as non-human.

could she suffer a programming error?

161. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

she’s the ultimate Donklephant, she IS a mistake.

162. Hair Club for Men - 29 October 2007

So much for the netroots tranforming the party. Not only won’t they back Kucinich, they’re going after Obama with an hatchet to make sure he’s dead before he sees Iowa.

Nice to know they’re all in favor of letting every vote in the primaries be counted.

163. marisacat - 29 October 2007

nutroots are just media… outreach from the party.

Not sure there is much else, some factionalism. About it.

164. marisacat - 29 October 2007

the primary schedule this year is useless… Iowa is now Jan 3.

No point. They want the least involvement (and a caucus is fucked anyway, it should be secret b allot a voting primary) possible.

165. Madman in the Marketplace - 29 October 2007

held hostage to the whims and prejudices of white people from the “heartland” … no wonder we’re fucked.

166. marisacat - 29 October 2007

new thread…

LINK


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