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Planetarchis* :: Ruler of the Planet 4 August 2006

Posted by marisacat in 2006 Mid Terms, Beirut, Big Box Blogs, DC Politics, Democrats, Iraq War, Israel/AIPAC, Italy, U.S. Senate.

    GWB, en route to Waco, August 3, 2006

* what the Greeks call the president of the United States.  Whomever he is.

From Bob Parry:

Strangling an Axis

While U.S. officials have been careful not to link the Lebanon conflict to any possible military action against Iran’s nuclear facilities, they have spoken privately about using the current conflict to counter growing Iranian influence.

Washington Post foreign policy analyst Robin Wright wrote that U.S. officials told her that “for the United States, the broader goal is to strangle the axis of Hezbollah, Hamas, Syria and Iran, which the Bush administration believes is pooling resources to change the strategic playing field in the Middle East. …

“Whatever the outrage on the Arab streets, Washington believes it has strong behind-the-scenes support among key Arab leaders also nervous about the populist militants – with a tacit agreement that the timing is right to strike.

“‘What is out there is concern among conservative Arab allies that there is a hegemonic Persian threat [running] through Damascus, through the southern suburbs of Beirut and to the Palestinians in Hamas,’ said a senior U.S. official.” [Washington Post, July 16, 2006] […]

But Hezbollah’s firing of rockets as far as the port city of Haifa, deep inside Israel, has touched off new fears among Israelis and their allies about the danger of more powerful missiles carrying unconventional warheads, possibly hitting heavily populated areas, such as Tel Aviv.

That fear of missile attacks by Islamic extremists dedicated to Israel’s destruction has caused Israel to start “dusting off it nukes,” one source told me. 

From The Daily Star, the editorial for August 3

[T]he conspicuous disenchantment of large segments – perhaps majorities – of Arab public opinion with their own government policies is being exacerbated every day. The consequences are ominous in a region with so much of the world’s energy reserves, and so many governments and ordinary citizens willing to use the most awful kind of violence to achieve their goals.

The signs of radicalization that continue to manifest themselves in various Arab countries, as a consequence of the war between Lebanon and Israel, must not be ignored. They must be appreciated and addressed, with a cease-fire now and wider political resolutions soon after, before they take the destruction we witness today to other parts of the region and the world.

well, they are on the ground there, they have to hope… but catching Condi tonight on some interview or other – she is absolutely disgraceful.  I cannot even imagine how she is laughed at in diplomatic circles.  Or, I can imagine, but can’t bear to think of it, that’s more accurate.


[S]peculation about motives and conflicting factors should not blind us to the tragedy that is unfolding. Lebanon is being destroyed, Israel’s Gaza prison is suffering still more savage blows, and on the West Bank, mostly out of sight, the United States and Israel are consummating their project of the murder of a nation, a grim and rare event in history.

These actions, and the Western response, illustrate all too clearly the amalgam of savage cruelty, self-righteousness, and injured innocence that is so deeply rooted in the imperial mentality as to be beyond awareness. One can easily understand why Gandhi, when asked what he thought of Western civilization, is alleged to have said that he thought it might be a good idea.


Since CT did not dry up and blow away, there is more… NYT took a look.

And Mr. Lamont has tried to make the most of their embrace. […]

But the results for Mr. Lamont have not always been what his campaign would have wanted. This week, the blogger who broke the news of Mr. Lieberman’s Halliburton stock posted a doctored image of the senator in blackface on The Huffington Post, stirring an outcry and prompting an embarrassed Lamont campaign to ask her to remove it. Lieberman supporters seized on the image, pointing out that the blogger, Jane Hamsher, has been closely involved in the Lamont campaign, even driving the campaign manager on Monday to New York for Mr. Lamont’s appearance on “The Colbert Report” on Comedy Central.

This blogging exemplified the risks posed by what has become the new frontier in campaign warfare.  

A fast tour [only way to do it] of the A List Blahhgs earlier — the standard parties, Atrios, FDL, SSP, and DKos, about 40 or so L v L postings over two days, all saying the same things, recounting the same tales of woe, angst, horror, insult, temerity, etc. — showed that they are On Message.  I found it kind of dull… I was supposed to gasp at pretty standard campaign hi-jinks.  Again, I feel sure they sell the netroots as not too swift

If swift at all…

And what DOES it all mean?  LOL I suppose there is some hope that by close of day Tuesday we may know… …  something?  That’d be nice.

It is not clear how many voters in Connecticut pay attention to the bloggers’ efforts.

Web traffic statistics showed that on a recent Monday afternoon, only one out of 100 visitors to Firedoglake, one of the bigger national blogs following the primary, was from Connecticut.

The bulk of visitors to several other pro-Lamont blogs based in Connecticut are also from outside the state, the statistics showed.

“My sense is that most people in Connecticut today don’t know what a blog is,” said Ms. Hamsher, the founder of Firedoglake who is also an author and the producer of Hollywood movies like “Natural Born Killers.”

Ms. Hamsher, 47, who now spends most of her time running her blog, is in Connecticut for the summer and has become a visible presence on the Lamont campaign trail.

And! she is out of state as well.  hmmm.  Yes, what does it all mean..😉

Closer to … hmm … home –  this is only linked to as it is the continuation of the 1,000,000 comment GBCW diary I linked to yesterday… that old Whip-per-snapper came out of his lair… and frankly it fell to being endless jokery, navel gazing, humming, effluvia and playing patty-cake – with scheisse patties.  ”Tag – you’re it” between buds – of a sort. 

The odd tart comment here and there…

In other words, another evening at Dkos.


   Rummy, Pace. Abizaid, 8/3/06

The REALLY big boyz, Rummy, Pace and Abizaid, knuckled under and testified before the Senate Armed Services Cmte.  Nobody looked too happy – no matter where they were seated….  And frankly, no one said a damned thing that was even marginally news – or even currently true. 

But Hillary pursed her lips and looked displeased with the war.  As did they all… Collins, Reed (who did vote against IWR), Warner, McCain… others.  Tedious line up of too many shysters, thieves, prevaricators and whatever else.  Users and abusers.

What did she expect when she cast that vote… Because frankly, despite the odd particular of this horror or that horror, it is what it was going to be:  God Damned Fucking WAR.

I’d vote for Satan before I EVER voted for that wretched piece of fake humanity.

And the last:

Several times during the hearing, Rumsfeld expressed concern that the committee’s back-and-forth would aid the enemy. “They’re waging a psychological war of attrition,” he said at one point. “They want us pointing fingers at each other rather than pointing fingers at them.”

My my my.  Rummy sounds like Delaware Dem. 

And… there will be more.  Blahhgs are stressed, do or die coming up.  Or so the MSM will say…


UPDATE:  9:30 am PT  From the wars

– Lebanon –

Hezbollah rockets hammer northern Israel AP – 9 minutes ago

KIRYAT SHEMONA, Israel – Hezbollah rockets hammered northern Israel on Friday, including a half-hour barrage of 45 missiles that killed four Israelis, three of them Arabs.

Israel severs Lebanon road link to Syria AP – 28 minutes ago

BEIRUT, Lebanon – Israel expanded its assault on Lebanon Friday, launching its first major attack on the Christian heartland north of Beirut and severing the last significant road link to Syria.

Iraqi Shiites chant ‘Death to Israel’ AP – 1 hour, 44 minutes ago

BAGHDAD, Iraq – Hundreds of thousands of Shiites chanting “Death to Israel” and “Death to America” marched through the streets of Baghdad’s biggest Shiite district Friday in a show of support for Hezbollah militants battling Israeli troops in Lebanon.

– Related –

Beach for Muslim women planned in Italy AP – 6 minutes ago

ROME – Hotels at an Italian seaside resort are eager to act on the town’s decision to authorize the creation of all-female beach sections for Muslim women, with at least one hotel owner saying Friday that plans are already under way to open the first of such secluded areas next month.


UPDATE:  9:45 am, PT

– Iraq –

Accused U.S. soldiers refuse to testify AP – Thu Aug 3, 2:25 PM ET

TIKRIT, Iraq – Four U.S. soldiers accused of murdering Iraqi detainees refused to testify Thursday at a military hearing, where witnesses described how one of the victims spat blood as he lay dying and another was covered in brain matter.

And a bit from the text, a wrinkle that had escaped me:

Defense lawyers are arguing the soldiers were only following the orders of brigade commander Col. Michael Steele to “kill all military-aged males.” Bivens said he doesn’t recall hearing such an order.

Steele, who led Army Rangers during the 1993 battle for Mogadishu in Somalia, has denied the allegations. He declined to speak to reporters about the charges, and has also invoked his right not to testify.

Girouard, Hunsaker, Clagett and Graber could face the death penalty if the case is passed on for a court-martial. They are accused of concocting a story to justify the shootings and covering it up from military prosecutors.

The first three are also accused of obstruction of justice for allegedly threatening to kill Pfc. Bradley Mason, the prosecution’s leading witness, who testified Wednesday.

Yes, Hillary looked so displeased with the war, yesterday.  But she and Bill have enabled the Bushes.  Day after day. 

What is the matter with this fake party?  All sorts of losers (Kerry, Edwards, Daschle  – and others earlier, Gep and so on) think they can run – and run again for president.  Others are simple collaborators.  Hillary is but one – of many.  Some are both, losers and collaborators.  So clear, they are not about winning.  For the nation that is.

Also, it’s reminiscent of the ‘Blahhhgger political party operative’ footprint in cyberspace.  Not about winning.  Not really… from the close of the DD diary of last evening, that slobber and effluvia fest:

If you are not here to work with the Democrats, to change the party for the better, to vote out establishment enablers of President Bush and incumbents who too often ignore their constituents, then Daily Kos is not for you and you should leave.

My take, they exist as a “carry out the hits” faction.  Murder by tabloid screams.  Nothing more.  Ladle out the polls (what a joke that is), filler, whatever else – and carry out the hits for various factions in the party… 😉

    US Marine photo, al Anbar,  3/18/06 BlackHawk and a Super Stallion


– GAZA –

Israeli push into Gaza kills 11 people Open this result in new window

AP via Yahoo! News – Aug 03 10:36 PM

Dozens of Israeli tanks pushed deep into the Gaza Strip and aircraft fired missiles at Palestinian militants Thursday, killing eight people in heavy fighting that mirrored the Israeli offensive against Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon.

… more to come…


UPDATE:  10:10 am, PT

– The War at Home –

At close of the last thread, CSTAR reminded that Billmon is valuable.  So he is… and I concur with him – sorry (but I am not) I just do not care that the party – factions within the party – play a sort of fake soccer up in CT, and elsewhere.  Because fake as it is, they are playing with human heads.  Dirty bloody games.

I’d rather a REAL candidate, in 6 years. A CT Tasini, for instance. My distaste for many of the “candidates” being run is very simple…. one after the other, they are primed to get us into the next war, wars.  Some, like Hackett, were primed to lead us into the next war, wars.  If you thought otherwise, disabuse yourself of Disney Land Politics.  Now.

They oppose nothing, not really – not war, not Bush (one after the other, they are a form of white imperialist) not killing trade policies, not the anti women wars – nor the endless neglect of children, the old and the poor.  I want a decent nation.  And I am served tired millionaires, ex-military (whiffs of CIA with one), former Republicans. 


They stand for nothing and thus fall for everything that is pushed out, nor did it begin with Bush.  Another simple fallacy.  It goes back decades.

And all are malleable, with few real beliefs or opinions.  We are in such trouble, such deep trouble, that badly mashed potatoes, served as new and improved, readi-whipped and full-flavored, obtain us NOTHING.

I don’t accept what Kos and Jane, Cindy and Atrios, DavidNYC, Bowers, Stoller and Star Gazer Boy, others (all of them campaign operatives, too many washed up from previous lives) shove out. 

I shove the hell back.


But there’s one big problem with all this hyperventilating: It wildly exaggerates the anti-war fevor that Ned Lamont supposedly represents. Oh I know Ned says he’s anti-war, but he only means the war in Iraq. The war in Lebanon, on the other hand, is just fine by him. And he’s already pledged he’ll be just as staunch a friend of Israel and the Israel lobby in this war as Holy Joe ever was or ever could be. So bombs away.

Of course, standing by Israel in war time is politically mandatory in a Connecticut Democratic primary — particularly running against this incumbent, who doesn’t have to wear his pro-Israel credentials on his sleeve because they’re monogrammed on his shirt pocket. Under the circumstances, I don’t really blame Lamont for feeling he has to be more Catholic than the Pope.

But Lamont’s stance also reflects a glaring contradiction in the emerging Democratic consensus on U.S. policy in the Middle East (a consensus which is about to make Joe Lieberman a man without a party). Politically, it’s a position that won’t be sustainable for long. And as a matter of policy, it’s a recipe for an even wider and more destructive war — one I fully expect most Democrats, including Lamont, will end up supporting, despite the consequences.

And I most particularly sign on with his close:

But I think we’ve run out of time. Events — from 9/11 on — have moved too fast and pushed us too far towards the clash of civilizations that most sane people dread but the neocons desperately want. The Dems are now just the cadet branch of the War Party. While the party nomenklatura is finally, after three bloody years, making dovish noises about the Iraq fiasco, I think their loyalty to Israel will almost certainly snap them back into line during the coming “debate” over war with Iran.

I hope like hell I’m wrong about this, but I don’t think I am. So I guess I’ll just have to accept being labeled a traitor to the cause — or whatever the hardcore partisans are calling it. Sure, why not. They’re certainly free to follow their party over the cliff (we’re all going over it anyway) but I’d at least prefer to do it with my eyes open.


UPDATE,  Noon on the Pacific Ocean.

From the wars – Israel –

CNN just announced that Hezbollah rockets have hit Hadera, the farthest inside Israel today.  Hunting for a print report…

Hezbollah fires rockets near Israel town AP – 1 minute ago

KIRYAT SHEMONA, Israel – Hezbollah launched its deepest rocket strike inside Israel to date, firing three Hezbollah rockets Friday near a town 50 miles south of the Lebanese border, police said.


– Lebanon –

Expanded report on the Israeli AF hits on Northern Lebanon, major access routes – and a general round-up report:

Israel warplanes destroy Lebanon bridges AP – 1 minute ago

BEIRUT, Lebanon – Israeli warplanes destroyed four key bridges on Lebanon’s last untouched highway Friday, severing the country’s final major connection to Syria and deepening its isolation.

 anti Israeli war rally, Manila, 8/2/06


UPDATE, 4 pm on the Pacific Ocean

ACH!  Mein lieber Gott.  — practising, we are going German here, in case anyone doubted it!  Achtung!!

We’ll hang onto Bismarkian war far too long (we’ll go down believing in the big machinery wars!, We will!  We are NOW!).

Arnolt will be reading Patriot Act (Parts II thru XXII)  to us in the original German [that was a good joke from the Recall mess!] and the always dying – but never dead – MSM punditry dirges on the Big Box Blahgs will be that the Blahgs are Liberal (I say they are LIEberal!), progressive … and / or smart…

When they are just party faction mouths.

As you read this sloberation, remember, this is coming from someone who plans to vote for Casey.  So, 2 + 2 makes that funny 3 dollar bill that I call the BlahhgSNots?  Yeah I think so. [emphasis is mine]

Here’s a message for the Democratic leadership.

Do you want the progressive blogs to spend the fall in a fight with you, or in a fight with the Republicans? Do you want our money pouring into Congressional races, or into Connecticut?

Because if Lieberman does not drop out, it will be unremitting war on Lieberman and on the cynical incumbent protection racket in the Senate.

You start this war and we’ll organize to Lamonticize against Salazar and Landrieu and Pryor, and anyone else that refuses to respect the will of the people that make up this party. Is that what you want?

You will lose. The blogosphere is a weapon. And it can be turned as easily on Morrison and Lieberman as it can be turned on Santorum and Burns.

The leadership would be incredibly unwise to give any support, tacit or otherwise, to an independent run by Joe Lieberman.

Lordy.  Sorry! slipped to Englischer!.  So…party faithful are commanded to vote for Casey and Webb and Kaine and Hillary and and and – that is the scheisse that Delaware Dem extrudes – and in public too.… but you, poor sod, are selling that Salazar should worry?  Who received early support from Hillary/HillPAC?  Or Military Mary – should worry !!?  hmmm. 

Goodness!  not just a tool…  a tool of a tool – and by my estimation, can add in one more layer at least.  And that is just in BlahhggSnot Land.  I am sure the same sloberation is at FDL, DKOS, Atrios, Digby, and elsewhere.  SO predicitable.

laughable.  I get an image of a puff of paper that has been told it is a Bellows – for War.  Meanwhile their leashes are showing.

 Ooops!  How COULD I forget… I left out Poor Sod’s brave close.  Don’t miss it.

Rally behind Lamont and the party and the message will be unified. Give Lieberman a green light, and you will have no end of trouble and it will drastically improve the Republicans’ chances of retaining their majorities.

So.  Hon.  Are you like, uh, threatening (fake, as all of this is) to help the Republicans?  I am SCREAMING with laughter and will be posting that tiny tiny graf often.

None of you tired, repetitious, Democratic Gang mouthpieces should lecture any of us.



UPDATE:  6:20 pm, PT

Speaking of Hillary, Norman Solomon of FAIR has an update in the Tasini v Clinton (or it would be in a decent world).  NY1 is playing games, it seems, with access to debate:

NY1 Silences Debate
Refuses to allow Clinton challenger Tasini in television primary debate


There is a heated debate among Democrats about the direction of the party, with centrist party stalwarts facing challenges from the left on issues like the Iraq War. But New York City voters will have a more difficult time seeing this debate play out, as New York City cable news channel NY1 (which is owned by Time Warner) has blocked the anti-war Democratic challenger Jonathan Tasini from a primary race debate against incumbent Sen. Hillary Clinton.

In a statement (Village Voice, 8/2/06), the channel said it had “established criteria to identify which candidates would be invited to participate” in the debates: poll at least 5 percent and have spent and/or raised $500,000.

In a recent Marist poll (7/19/06), Tasini stood at 13 percent, but his campaign has only raised $150,000.

Oh but I have a solution! 

 You will lose. The blogosphere is a weapon. And it can be turned as easily on Morrison and Lieberman as it can be turned on Santorum and Burns.

That weapon, that power of the Blogosphere!  Tasini is anti-war! Like Lamont! [stop laughing!] Hillary is Establishment Dem!  [nobody is laughing, we are being strangled] Perhaps Primo Establishment Dem!  Tasini is a unique voice, who can credibly argue from a position of knowledge AND is Jewish!

He is a MITZVAH!  A gift!

No???, why would BlaahhhgSnots not direct that formidable weapon they hold?  That 50 Caliber weapon mounted on their specially made Cadillac hybrid Ford 250 with a King Cab (the 50 caliber is right on top of the King Cab)?

BlahhgSNots?  Where are Youuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu????



1. D. Throat - 4 August 2006

Well they are achieving PEACE among warring arabs and muslims against Israel…

Now, Israel’s onslaught against Hezbollah, which has included the destruction of key infrastructure throughout the country, as well as Shia strongholds in southern Lebanon and south Beirut, has quite possibly dealt a lethal blow to the government of the moderate, pro-Western Prime Minister Fouad Siniora, even as it has boosted the popularity of Hezbollah — contrary to the initial expectations in both Washington and Tel Aviv.

Even Hezbollah’s fiercest Lebanese foe, Druze leader Walid Jumblatt, who during the ”Cedar Revolution” praised Bush’s transformation strategy as ”the start of a new Arab world” comparable to the fall of the Berlin Wall, told the Financial Times this week that he was forced to support the Shia militia against ”brutal Israeli aggression” that would result in the weakening of the central government and the strengthening of Hezbollah and, through it, Syria and Iran.

”All American policy in the Middle East is at stake because their failure in Palestine, then failure in Iraq and now this failure in Lebanon will lead to a new Arab world where the so-called radical Arabs will profit,” he said, adding that ”this is…not the new Middle East of Ms. (Secretary of State Condoleezza) Rice.”

2. TustonDAZ - 4 August 2006

I’d like to take exception to:

I’d rather a REAL candidate, in 6 years…

I too would rather a real candidate now, or even in six years, but I think that we’ll be waiting for that ship longer than the Garveyites have been waiting for the seven miles of Black Star liners (Rasta allusion, google it if I-n-I curious and clueless, mon!)

The U.S. is just starting to pay the piper for the coporate jig we’ve been dancing since before the Raygun devolution, and I fear it will be a very, very long time before “we” change our tune…of course eventually, despite a deeply desired, but ultimately, desperate re-arranging the deck chairs, the waltz will end and our Titanic will sink…then maybe poets with real muses might manifest, but I wouldn’t hold my breathe.

Just making conversation…;+}

3. CSTAR - 4 August 2006

Krauthammer says Israel isn’t delivering on its neocon: responsabilities

Daniel Levy says that Disentangling Israeli interests from the rubble of neocon “creative destruction” in the Middle East has become an urgent challenge for Israeli policy-makers.

BTW I was really puzzled by this Krauthammer quote

Iran is on the march. It is intervening through proxies throughout the Arab world — Hezbollah in Lebanon, Hamas in Palestine, Moqtada al-Sadr’s Mahdi Army in Iraq — to subvert modernizing, Western-oriented Arab governments and bring these territories under Iranian hegemony.

modernizing AND Western-oriented Arab governments?

4. marisacat - 4 August 2006

ooo Tuston…. I agree. 😉

I’d have preferred that the Dems did not faciilitate Reagan in ’80. Decline to prosecute Iran- Contra… etc. LOL that woulda worked for me.

All the old horrors, never dealt with have gathered. Maybe I will throw on some Wagner.

5. TustonDAZ - 4 August 2006


Wunderbar! Can’t dance to it, but it sure does get the blood racing…

Turkey is tooting its own horn and will likely play a bigger role than any of us think…

Zaman Online

The Arab world is now about to fail in Lebanon. Many countries including –even Norway– are seeking solutions to crisis Lebanon but we hear nothing from the Arab world. Turkey is far ahead of the countries in the region in taking initiatives.

According to the common repute, Arab countries are angry because it was Hezbollah, a Shiite group, to start the crisis. Saudi Arabia criticized both Israel and Hezbollah and accused the Shiite group of being adventurers. Besides, Sunni governments having Shiite minorities are loud in their complaints regarding the efforts to form a Shiite circle in the region.

Their worries may be justified but the Arabic governments should realize they will probably lose Lebanon due to their indifference to the public opinion in their countries, as they once lost Iraq.

Do the Arabic governments forget that the regulations (1989 Taif Accords) ending the domestic war in Lebanon and forming the current status quo are Arab patented. Do not they remember that Lebanon is a member of seven Arab League countries and the idea of Arabic nationalism was spread by Lebanon?

Or not, but from all the band leaders showing their scores I think that a cacophony, and not a symphany, is more likely to be played at the concert….(hope I’m not pushing my metaphors to far.)

6. marisacat - 4 August 2006


I just read an interview, and I forget now iwth whom, which made a very pertinent point. That while the Neocon are “Israeli-fixated” they also firmly believe they know better what is best for Israel than the Israelis.

And Krauthammer fulfills that. EVERYONE is to be subservient… Loons! At some point I went back in the wake of 9/11 to read all of his lies and horrors and gushing support for Bush. Quite the tough little journey.

LOL I was fair! I did the same thing with Oliphant in Boston… because he was SUCH a fucking loon mouthpiece for the Dems (and La Kerry) in ’04. Another imperial white boy. he wrote columns of massive, crafted cover for Gep and Dashcle over the war promotion and the Rose Garden and so on. 24.99 and I read 5 years of Oliphant.

LOL so doomed, from both “sides”.

thanks for the link, will put it up. 😉

7. TustonDAZ - 4 August 2006

“modernizing AND Western-oriented Arab governments”

Like Lebanon…

Seriously, can you ever make any sort of sense out of Krauthammer crap?

If you can you’re a much smarter than I…

8. aemd - 4 August 2006

“If you thought otherwise, disabuse yourself of Disney Land Politics. Now.”


“They’re certainly free to follow their party over the cliff (we’re all
going over it anyway) but I’d at least prefer to do it with my eyes open.”

Opera Glasses and Popcorn or a ratty ass beach chair and a cracked cooler full of cold ones. All we can do is watch and comment. The Empire is on the march. Forced, forced, ya know, into “dusting off it nukes”. BlogMAIDS urgently needed. Dust those babies off, the Boyz need ’em. Game players, team players and enablers. Not to worry, it’s just team sports. ESPN politics. I wonder what the odds are in Vegas.

Damn them all. Fuckin’ damn them all.

9. TustonDAZ - 4 August 2006

“Fuckin’ damn them all.” Amen aemd, amen.

Here’s a link to British Opinion piece that I thought was illustrative of the murdereous mentality of the psychopathic personalities of our “leaders.”

At a Downing Street reception not long ago, a guest had the temerity to ask Tony Blair: “How do you sleep at night, knowing that you’ve been responsible for the deaths of 100,000 Iraqis?” The Prime Minister is said to have retorted: “I think you’ll find it’s closer to 50,000.”

Lovely, no? At least Macbeth tried to wash his hands.

Here’s a bit of interesting data from the link above:

A record of conflict: the death toll from wars Britain has fought under three prime ministers

Tony Blair
71,617 deaths
9 years in power

John Major
22,316 deaths
7 years in power


Margaret Thatcher
1,013 deaths
11 years in power


The figures do not take into account the estimated 350,000 Iraqis who died as a result of sanctions between 1991 and 2003 – under John Major and Tony Blair.

So the librul Blair racked up more murders than Iron Maggie…just think about the possibilities under a Hilary regime!

10. pyrrho - 4 August 2006

wagner, that would be appropriate music for pre-nazi nation… is that what you meant? Beyreuth Waggy?

I was going to ask a similar thing… where do you think a candidate could possibly come from in a mere 6 years? No where.

I’d be happy with 15.

It always looks promising for a bit when citizens work directly with each other… but eventually, and not long, usually, everything is recentralized in conservative organizations that generate, of necessity, conservative strategy and opinion.

11. NYCee - 4 August 2006

Oh Marisa.

That is indeed a sad (and meaningful) Billmon.

Okay, out I go to an island of sanity. Tasini volunteering…

Wow. That was sad. Delivered in the dark quiet of the Whiskey Bar.

12. marisacat - 4 August 2006

OOO Bravo NYCee! that will be cheering, volunteering time for Tasini… 😉

13. marisacat - 4 August 2006

And yes, to other points in the thread:

candidates CAN rise in 6 years. Different from rebuilding, “taking back”, the party (the big ”sell” from the party chumps, operatives, DLC – NDN – yeah they all sell the same scheisse) that would take 15 – 25 – 40 years.

From the ground up… bit by bit. The party has no interest in that =- at all. They want the FUNDRAISING shell just as it is. And Blahhggs are a part of that SHELL GAME.

Of course a candidate can rise in 6 years.

This pessimism Pyrrho is just not well suited to the games at hand. Do pull yourself together. The LEFT will be adrift without your steady rudder. SHoulder to the plough now!

something like that

14. TustonDAZ - 4 August 2006

I remain to be convinced that (truly progressive) candidates can rise in six years. When “lefty” guys like Feingold can vote for Roberts and in blind support of Israeli’s war crimes the future looks bleak indeed. The U.S. needs fundemental paradigm shifts not only in politics, but in the very conciousness and mores of our “society”. I don’t see that really happening anytime soon.

Like Marisacat has been writing for years we are being visited by old and hoary horrors that are centuries old and in a profound sense part of weft of the fabric of life in the US. American .

Six years seems way too soon to anything but the first glimmers of a new dawn, but I’ve been wrong before…

but hey, let’s go back to shooting fish in a barrel

From the Orange Blog comes a nifty knew rec diary:

Shhhh. It’s time that everybody quiets down. The moderates, centrists, and independents may be listening.

I know that you think your opinions are good. You probably think that your positions are the correct ones. But let me ask you something. Would all the moderates, centrists, and independents in this country agree with you? If not, then you are wrong. You are a left-handed lefty leftist way out in left field. And you are scaring the moderates, centrists, and independents. And therefore, you are destroying the Democratic party

That’s just too rich, excuse me while I desolve in paroxysms of laughter.

15. pyrrho - 4 August 2006


lol, so you have some optimisms still I learn… if not about what -will- happen. then what could possibly happen.

I think the only hope at the moment for Dems is if all the conservative ones become Republicans and try to make that party more liberal, it’s murder to have them in the Dem party keeping and making it more conservative.

16. TustonDAZ - 4 August 2006

Whoops, I guess that diary was some sarcasm or something. I guess its easier for me to believe they meant it.

I also want to say I’m all for putting our shoulder to the plow, and I hope I’m being objective rather than merely pessimistic in my analysis…

We certainly aren’t going to get anywhere without trying.

Gone are the days when the ox fall down,
Take up the yoke and plow the fiends around…


17. marisacat - 4 August 2006

oh god. I misspelled “plow”. LOL…

Well I mean that it is possible for a good candidate to appear in six years.

To remake the left… well no. But Tasini was around in 2000… a union lawyer. Not a candidate yet, from what I recall reading. hmm someone like SPitzer (nto endorsing as anything in particular, except as a possible future candidate, worth watching) takes longer than 6 years … that route.

Things can change… but I think we are still in the shutting down part of things.

And widening war that involves Israel greatly complicates everything. LOL… we are just dancing with Nuclear war heads now.

18. TustonDAZ - 4 August 2006

I agree things can change, and that we’re still shutting down.

I definetely agree we’re dancing with Nukes now. Nothing to do about that other than pry our eyes as wide open as possible and take refuge in expression (Art, demonstrations, civil disobedience, and making as much as fuss as possible, for sure)

The $64K question is how are we as collective (not just libruls, but society in general) going to react to the comming disasters.

How we reacted to 9/11 doesn’t bode well for us…

19. marisacat - 4 August 2006

How we reacted to 9/11 doesn’t bode well for us… – Tuston

well a lot of that was government. GOing for lowest denominator.

A & E was all over NYC for weeks, months following 9/11. They rerun a lot of their film every year. SOme of the stuff they shot in the first week was AMAZING… people really talking, on the streets, in groups, just ad hoc, impromptu… yelling at each other, crying, hugging. But very very real.

It took the government almost two weeks to begin the Big Steamroller toward war… from what I observed at the time… Get out the flags and everybody start lying in public.

Very sad. Becasue the next big attack on US soil and we shut down immediately. I think the arguments will be over for a generation, at least.

20. JJB - 4 August 2006

With regards to the bombing of the bridge in northern (Christian) Lebanon, there was a devastating report on the CBS Evening News tonight. I forget the reporter’s name, but after showing a small fishing boat marina near Beirut that the Israelis had pointlessly destroyed, he went to the bridge that had been knocked out, and stood at the edge of one of the remaining portions (pretty gutsy considering it might have collapsed due to the weight of his body) and had himself filmed standing there in a very log shot in which he was barely visible while he spoke, making the points that this was a Christian stronghold, that there were no hizbollah supporters there (not of the pre 7/12 variety anyway), no hizbollah offices or storage depots there, and above all, no rocket launchers there. He also stated that people trapped there had just lost their only route out, and that relief supplies convoys had lost their only route in to offer relief to people who very much needed it. It was about as strong a report as you’re ever going to see in TV news; you saw the extent of the devastation, while its consequences were related in spare, stark terminology. Unfortunately, his live summing up against the nighttime beirut skyline (the previous material had been pre-recorded) lost the audio portion. I found myself wondering if a certain nation might not be monitoring US network news telecasts, and using ultrasophisticated jamming equipment to block out material they don’t like. Or if some Liduknik type at CBS might have pulled the plug.

BTW, with regards to these rabidly pro-Israelis types who think they know much better what’s best for Israel than real Israelis do, I’d like to coin a term: they are “Zionocentrists” who think “Zionocentric” thoughts (e.g., The New Republic is a Zionocentric publication being run into the ground by its owner Martin Peretz, a Zionocentrist). Feel free to either use it without attribution, or deplore and ignore it.

21. CSTAR - 4 August 2006

Whoa, Billmon is on a roll!

I look forward to hearing Friedman’s ideas for “disengaging” from our Middle Eastern Pottery Barn. Who’s supposed to do the clean up in aisle four? The Ayatollah Khamenei?

That “oeuvre” that you left behind, Mr Friedman, is what usually is called “caca” or “cagada” or even “gran cagada” in spanish.

22. Madman in the Marketplace - 4 August 2006

people really talking, on the streets, in groups, just ad hoc, impromptu… yelling at each other, crying, hugging. But very very real.

memories of the fading missing fliers, EVERYWHERE, haunt me still. For a short time, people tried to act on their better natures in NYC, while the rest of the country sharpened their swords and got their tissues at hand, the better to enjoy the coming war porn.

As for better candidates, there is always the possibility of a paradigm shift, a sudden realigning, where populism suddenly becomes focused and real. It’s fooling to count on it, but good to be ready for it, to help it along, should it appear.

23. wu ming - 4 August 2006

i think it’s a bit of a false choice to talk of making what compromised fights we can now and getting decent candidates up in 6 years. we should always fight for what we can whenever we can. that being said, everyone’s got a point at which they draw a line and say “here, and no further,” and that’s fine. even half-steps are of some use tactically, as long as one is honest about it, and doesn’t try to pretend like it’s a real, trustworthy candidate. lamont is like that IMO, a transitional figure.

no matter how bad it gets, to nukes even (and i wouldn’t be surprised to see it get there by november), i think that we are obligated as human beings to see what little we can do to stand against the tide and do it, with eyes open. that is not to say that one must sign up with any party, especially one which is often part of the problem, but rather that even in the darkest times, there is always more to do than just opera glasses and popcorn.

marisa’s got an optimist tucked deep down there; we all do or we wouldn’t be so goddamn tormented about this shit. knowing that it could be different, that we’re not fated to be this horrifically cruel and self-destructive, that war is over if you want it, is that extra stone piled upon the chest, on top of all the others.

24. Deepest Troat - 4 August 2006

OK, tin foil time … you know everything that is going on now in the ME, isn’t it a bit strange that last time all hell broke lose was when Poppy was in running the show behind the scenes.

Remember the Iran-Contra scandal? maybe the Bush Junta are just finishing it up. The elections South of Border are a major concern and the Columbia election was a strange one too. Can’t finish up when the key players are no longer there.

25. wu ming - 4 August 2006

For a short time, people tried to act on their better natures in NYC, while the rest of the country sharpened their swords and got their tissues at hand, the better to enjoy the coming war porn.

i think those feelings weren’t limited to NYC, madman, even if they were masked by peopl;e flying flags for diametrically opposed meanings. there was a craving out here of the left coast, to somehow redeem ourselves by coming together, being better somehow, that went completely untapped, tamped down in the days and even hours after the event itself.

the anger of having that moment diverted into shopping, war and xenophobia is what was behind a lot of the energy in the dean campaign, IMO, that thwarted desire to make something better of ourselves, and even then it was imperfectly done. i think there’s still a lot of that craving out there, untapped and festering.

26. bayprairie - 4 August 2006

lamont is like that IMO, a transitional figure.


based on what evidence is that statement made?

other than wishful thinking, that is.

27. bayprairie - 4 August 2006

a thing that raises my bloodpressure is the CW seen within the ParTay© blahhggwhirled that accepts as wisdom that “just because im no longer supporting loser democrats” i’ve somehow “given up”.

that, my friends as all of you know, is a huge load of horseshit. all i’ve given up is a tool that no longer works.

the loser democrats are ineffectual. lebanon illustrates that perfectly. anti-war my ass.

now, would the DJ cue up another “hope” diary at DKos and other ParTay© blaahhgs.

i need another good laugh in these sad times.

28. raincat100 - 4 August 2006

JJB, I saw that, too, though I missed the end of it. It’s good that it is on the national news, but I wonder how much of it really registers with the average viewer. As an aside, I have thought to myself while watching these reports, that some of these reporters are really taking some risks.

Madman said: “As for better candidates, there is always the possibility of a paradigm shift, a sudden realigning, where populism suddenly becomes focused and real. It’s fooling to count on it, but good to be ready for it, to help it along, should it appear.”

Yes, yes. At this point, it seems to much to hope for, but I will keep a space for it and water it.

wu ming. yeah. But, tell me…and I am not being antagonistic here at all…during the run-up to the Iraq war, I showed up for various downtown rallies/marches, and *many* weekly vigils at Greenlake in Seattle…the local media ignored us. [Really ridiculous, when you consider the coverage they give to a box of detergent falling off a shelf during a 3-something earthquake.)

One day, we all held hands and made a complete circle around Greenlake (3+ miles). Next to nothing. The teensy bit of coverage that was there, towards the end, always sought “balance”…anti-war (large numbers) = find the most odd-looking people in the crowd; As opposed to the pro-war “crowd” = close-ups of *families* (very small numbers) waving flags.

I’ll never forget the sight of some guy driving by with his family…in a large suburban or something…the back window rolled down with a little (white) boy…5 or 6…giving us the finger. Well, Dad, in a few years, he can sign up, right? Right?

29. marisacat - 4 August 2006

oh imo Lamont is no improvement.

The point is tht all of these shoved at us candidated will in fact facilitate the wars. Every one of them.

Every god damned one of them.

Esp a very useless fellow such as Lamont. Who has had one of the dullest lives on record. Ever.

he is not some pupa about to be a rainbow butterfly in the senate. Not at all. He is STASIS served as change. Which is at the core of what is going on with the party and with the Kos machine.

One reason a blissed out fucked up loon such as Kos pushes him. People should try to look at Kos critically. His appearance on Tweety today was beyond laughable. He looked every inch a cult leader/figure of the oddest sort… John Fund made fun of him and mashed him to death and he smiled.

Very odd gamer.

The union “volunteer” sells him/Lamont as the Big Man who Volunteered in a Public High School”. Aldon Hynes tried to push his candidacy as “getting millionaires out of Congress”, in an early exhcange I had with him on Dadahead.

LOL the NEtroots is very actively sold as STUPID by the campaign operatives.

SOrry it does not get emptier.

Lamont shows the failure of what was sold as a new medium and a new rocess and a new – LOL – better campaign operative/Blahhgger.

30. raincat100 - 4 August 2006

wu ming said: the anger of having that moment diverted into shopping, war and xenophobia is what was behind a lot of the energy in the dean campaign, IMO, that thwarted desire to make something better of ourselves, and even then it was imperfectly done. i think there’s still a lot of that craving out there, untapped and festering.

Yes, it is still here…festering.

31. bayprairie - 4 August 2006

Every god damned one of them.

32. wu ming - 4 August 2006


yes, it was far from universal, not a majority, but i think the responses to the events were more varied and complex, buried under the use of common symbols and expressions of grief, than the way that the event has been narrated in the media, or was even at the time. much like katrina in that way, huge undercurrents completely invisible except in quiet conversations with friends and neighbors.

the real trick was in convincing all those people that they were the only ones who felt/feel that way. all the wannabe amateur punditry on the blogs talking about “electability” and “middle america” and “moderates” reflect that willing self-marginalization, that acceptance of unamerican status. fruit grown from seeds planted by the DLC a generation ago, if not two with the red scare.

33. marisacat - 4 August 2006

I love “breaking” news. I mean as it is reported in small bits… a bit here from Reuters, a bit from yahoo, a different angle from AP and whole different skew from AFP… then you can niggle around in the European early reports and so on. Then see what Xinhua went with… in a bit Bellaciao or Uruknet will morph together something fascinating… sort of a late mash of the “breaking”.

9/11 was “breakning news” for almost two weeks. Then the machine rollers were turned on. It was sad to watch. Because “breaking News” is when the story is not “machined” yet.

A long time ago… seems to me it was summer after the invasion, there ws a fascinating shooting in the former Yugoslavia.. a prison that had US mil, us contractors, UN personnel and also multinationals – and of course prisoners.

The ‘breaking news’ rolled for a few hours, it broke in the US night. Paper Tigress and I were in a state of thrill in a diary that someone had put up… she’d get a bit here from one news wire source.. I had a different story, a AP reporter was getting comments at the hospital people had been taken to… but by bit by bit by bit…

We were in our element! Armando came into the diary and told us to be ”careful”.

Stasis. preserving the Status quo. SHutting people down.


We weren’t Blog Maids.

34. bayprairie - 5 August 2006

i asked you a question.

you talk like you know something, so lets hearit.

lamont is like that IMO, a transitional figure.


based on what evidence is that statement made?

35. pyrrho - 5 August 2006


a thing that raises my bloodpressure is the CW seen within the ParTay© blahhggwhirled that accepts as wisdom that “just because im no longer supporting loser democrats” i’ve somehow “given up”.

that, my friends as all of you know, is a huge load of horseshit. all i’ve given up is a tool that no longer works.

very true.

36. pyrrho - 5 August 2006

I remember when dkos was useful as a progressive slashdot, regardless of kos who ignored the diaries… it did cover breaking news.

the rule against “duplicates” was dumbing, instead of 50 different views, and compelling angles being generated… it’s a rush to be first, which of course advantages the worst of the lot, those that don’t need to take time to think, and those that have “inside scoops”… they claim.

37. pyrrho - 5 August 2006

I remember when dkos was useful as a progressive slashdot, regardless of kos who ignored the diaries… it did cover breaking news.

the rule against “duplicates” was dumbing, instead of 50 different views, and compelling angles being generated… it’s a rush to be first, which of course advantages the worst of the lot, those that don’t need to take time to think, and those that have “inside scoops” (aka manipulative emails)

38. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 August 2006

wu ming

late getting back, but the comparison of the feelings in NYC to what is out here in the Big Middle has always been striking to me.

I left NYC for the last time on 9/11/03 in a rented moving van, finally giving up on the economy in NYC recovering, tired of homeless shuffling from one couch/floor to another, depending on the kindness of stangers and cheap rent from immigrants w/ an xtra bedroom.

That morning, the sense of the day in the city was one of quiet memory. On I80, as the GWB faded into memory, my friend and I started to see homemade signs hanging from overpasses, and much more talk about 9/11 on the radio. More as we headed west. It was MUCH more martial, much more jingoistic, MUCH more angry and agreived than it had been in the city. NY’ers had absorbed, to a certain extent, the lesson of the aftermath of the attack. I always found NYers to be more kind than other Americans (don’t laugh … I’ve lived all over this country), though much of that is born of the self-preservation that comes from living so CLOSE to each other.

It was different as we headed west. Angrier. You’d have thought that the attacks had hit Cleveland or Chicago or …

It was disturbing. It still IS disturbing.

39. bayprairie - 5 August 2006

the democratic party’s hobble-skirted march of progress

take one tiny lamont forward please

oh.. sorry! you didn’t say may i.

so you must take one casey to the back.

(may i? may i?)

yes you may.

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