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Floating over the coral… 14 May 2009

Posted by marisacat in 2010 Mid Terms, Culture of Death, DC Politics, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, WAR!.

Corals and mangrove grow at the protected Bunaken National Marine Park in Manado, Indonesia. Rising water temperatures, sea levels and acidity are threatening to destroy the vast Coral Triangle in South East Asia, the World Wildlife Fund said in a new report. [Romeo Gacad/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images]

IOZ (drawing from this NPR report):

[T]he United States has always tortured. The sudden decision of the Obama administration to air its predecessor’s dirty laundry concomitant with its denigrating the possibility of seeking to prosecute either the authors of torture policy or the practitioners thereof indicates only that the current regime seeks to return the practice of torture to the legal demimonde where it is practiced circumspectly and in a manner that allows it to be denounced when made public, i.e. a return to the status quo ante. Note that even as Obama “ended torture,” with a few loops of the executive pen, he reaffirmed the procedure known as extraordinary rendition, which is nothing other than the venerable American tradition of hiring others to do our dirty work. The new focus on so-called contractors as the main advocates for torture is part of the same effort, to make non-policy policy, always maintaining a degree of deniability, something the clumsier Bush administration was never able to accomplish.

A paragraph that gave me a headache, in all its curlicues not unlike our wink and nod policies.  We avert our eyes.. and all is fine.  Aversion therapy.

Hallelujah! and  Amen! and  Praise be Jesus!



1. marisacat - 14 May 2009

Tapper has a story up tonight on the military tribunals issue…

2. lucid - 14 May 2009

Just booked italia tickets… I’m really going..

not sure what to think.

marisacat - 14 May 2009


lucid - 14 May 2009

Have to get passport renewed… like, tomorrow.

lucid - 14 May 2009

I’m worried about the kitties… already.

marisacat - 14 May 2009

No one you trust to care for them in their home?

lucid - 14 May 2009

Plenty of people to trust… not looking forward to the grudge. Since I’ve had them, I’ve never been away for more than 5 days – and that’s rare. 15 days is a different thing. According to my roomates, they gather by the door about 3-5 minutes before I come home every day… meaning they smell me from the street – and that makes them really happy. 15 days is a long time. I don’t want to make them sad.

marisacat - 14 May 2009

oh I know what you mean. Thankfully Baby was always so happy to see me again… she would forgive pretty quickly. What she REALLY hated was that for just two nights or so, I would put her in boarding at the vet. Make sure hse had a nicer, bigger top cage and make friends with the person who took care of the boarders… and fortunately he did like her… but still, she moped.. Take her own favorite foods with her and a couple of toys that smelled like the house and used pillow case from my bed.

But she hated it… Once when I went to pick her up, the tech broght her and her carrier to me and said he had never seen a cat so happy to know the designated human had come. It was almost embarrassing.

lucid - 14 May 2009

My roomates will be here to care for them, and I’ll ask their mother, my ex to check in a few times. While I have no doubt that Lucy will be fine with that, Gizmo is really sensitive, and gets badly depressed when I’m not around. When I go to work, he picks up my dirty socks in his mouth, runs around with them, chews them, and meows at the top of his head. I’m not privy to animal psychology, but he doesn’t do that when I’m home. And he also gets angry at me when I haven’t come home.

marisacat - 14 May 2009

one of the worst I ever saw was when my mother first crashed and was in hospital for 32 days … Her cat Maggie hid for 3 weeks. I never even found where. Occasionally a little food would go in the night. Then a few days before mother came home, she crawled from wehre ever she was, to me. And smelled like a dirty athletic sock. No bathing no caring for herself. When I got mother home and in bed a few days later, she crawled out again and got on the bed and did not leave for days.

lucid - 14 May 2009

This cat was weened too soon. I’m his mother & he’s never replaced that. I got him when he was about 4 weeks old, abandoned by his mother. And because I [as an ignorant human] never told him no when he suckled, he still believes that I am a teat! It doesn’t matter if no food comes from licking my clothing or skin… I am simply a teat. Mix that with his emotional relationship with me over his nearly 6 year life, and… well.

My first expedition in parenting – I failed miserably.

marisacat - 14 May 2009

oh well leaving mother too soon does make a difference. when we had litters, 2 of them, we kept the kittens with the mother cat for 3 months.. They, father and mother, were both here and they box trained the kittens.

lucid - 14 May 2009

And shit – 6 weeks out I got the tickets for $761. High season. Non-stop NYC to Rome.

marisacat - 14 May 2009

Is that high or low these days?

lucid - 14 May 2009

I have no idea, but the last time I flew high season to the Mediterranean it was about $1,000 with a flight change in Paris… so I kind of feel like that’s a deal – especially given that I don’t have any connecting flights.

3. marisacat - 14 May 2009

Owen Paine over at SMBIVA has a to the point post on the Marcy Winograd run agaisnt Jane Harmon.

[I]f you want to have a prayer of getting rid of Waterboard Jane, then a primary bypass and a straight run for the seat in November — as SMBIVA always advocates — is the only way. You could do it as, say, an “independent democrat” (size of “d” to be determined later).

That would at least show probable intent on dame Marcy’s part to actually knock the Madame H machine off the hill.

But alas — the pwog pond dare not flout the Big Tent party’s rule book: thou shalt not challenge the party from its left unless you win the primary in a fair fight. Leave rogue general-election maneuvering to center-aisle club guys like Bridgeport’s own right honorable meat muppet, Boltin’ Joe Lieberfrau

And… a comment rounded it all off:

And, as a bonus, they can point to the defeat as proof the Democrats (in present formulation) are as far left as the public want them.

4. lucid - 14 May 2009

Box training was never a problem… neither of my cats [both infant rescues] have ever had box issues… They’re just very attached… to me. They actively try to prevent me from leaving the house. They’re smart as shit. If I ever take out luggage to pack, they know & they immediately ignore me – grudge in advance. When I put on my coat to go out, they know, and Lucy tries to block the door…. crazy kitties

marisacat - 14 May 2009

the little mother cat here had arrived as a rescue, someone found her and brought to the local pet groomer near us… who would take in rescues. SHE arrived with suckling issues.. but I noticed as she had her own litters, that sort of drifted off. I am all for cutting down on the pet population, not having homeless cats and dogs, etc. and euthanised and so on.. but we do end up with stunted critters.

lucid - 15 May 2009

Very true. For whatever reasons my female cat doesn’t have those issues, though she was abandoned at a couple of weeks. My male cat never recovered. The only reason my female cat licks me is to clean me – armpits and such. But when Gizmo licks… it’s entirely different. He doesn’t care what he licks – so long as it is something I’m wearing, a blanket in proximity to me, something that smells like me, or my skin, he purrs like a hoover and, despite him being an overgrown monster, behaves like he is a suckling kitty. It’s kind of insane. He reminds me of a typical boy.

5. marisacat - 15 May 2009

FWIW (less then the cost of an expresso!) Balz has a piece up on Nancy… and the progression of statements. Wonder what “let’s move forward” pretzel thinks of it all.

At the very least a lot of squirming in DC. And lying.

catnip - 15 May 2009

Pelosi has become a lightning rod for criticism from conservatives, and a hero to the left,

According to whom?

6. marisacat - 15 May 2009

hmm Gareth Porter on McChrystal:

McChrystal spent an unusual five years as commander of JSOC, because he had become a close friend of then Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfeld. Rumsfeld came to view JSOC as his counter to the covert operations capabilities of the CIA, which he hated and distrusted, and Rumsfeld used JSOC to capture or kill high value enemy leaders, including Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda’s top leader in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

In 2005, JSOC’s parent command, the Special Operations Command (SOCOM), was directed by Rumsfeld to “plan, synchronize and, as directed, conduct global operations against terrorist networks in coordination with other combatant commanders”. That directive has generally been regarded as granting SOCOM the authority to carry out actions unilaterally anywhere on the globe.

Special Operations forces under McChrystal’s command also engaged in raiding homes in search of Taliban suspects, angering villagers in Herat province to the point where they took up arms against the U.S. forces, according to a May 2007 story by Carlotta Gall and David E. Sanger of the New York Times.

After a series of raids by Special Operations forces in Afghanistan in late 2008 and early 2009 killed women and children, to mounting popular outrage, McChrystal’s successor as commander of JSOC, Vice Adm. William H. McRaven, ordered a temporary reduction in the rate of such commando raids in mid-February for two weeks.

However, the JSOC raids resumed at their original intensity in March [of this year, note! -Mcat]. Later that month Gen. David Petraeus issued a directive putting all JSOC operations under McKiernan’s tactical command, but there has been no evidence that the change has curbed the raids by Special Operations Forces.

President Barack Obama’s National Security Adviser Gen. James Jones responded to Karzai’s demand for an end to U.S. airstrikes by saying, “We’re going to take a look at trying to make sure that we correct those things we can correct, but certainly to tie the hands of our commanders and say we’re not going to conduct air strikes, it would be imprudent,”

The airstrike in western Farah province that killed nearly 150 civilians last week, provoking protests by hundreds of university students in Kabul, was also ordered by Special Operations Forces. …snip…

You almost have to laugh: we’re still at, “Wouldn’t be prudent”.

7. marisacat - 15 May 2009

hmmm Chalmers Johnson reviews a new book out on our global military base sprawl: The Bases of Empire: The Global Struggle Against U.S. Military Posts

It should be noted that the BSR for fiscal 2008 has been available since the summer of last year and it somewhat alters Lutz’s figures. It gives details on 761 bases in other people’s countries and 104 U.S. territories, which produces a Lutz total of 865. Such small variations from year to year have been typical of the American empire throughout the Cold War. Some 865 bases located in all the continents except Antarctica is not only a staggeringly large number compared even with the great empires of the past, but one the U.S. clearly cannot afford given its severely weakened economic condition.

Nonetheless, there has been no public discussion by the Obama administration over starting to liquidate our overseas bases or beginning to scale back our imperialist presence in the rest of the world. [no shock there! — Mcat] One must also remember that the BSR is an official source that often conflicts with other reports on the numbers of American military personnel located all over the world. It omits many bases that the Department of Defense wants to conceal or play down, notably those in Iraq, Afghanistan and Israel.

For example, just one of the many unlisted bases in Iraq, Ballad Air Base, houses 30,000 troops and 10,000 contractors, and extends across 16 square miles with an additional 12-square-mile “security perimeter.” …snip…

8. BooHooHooMan - 15 May 2009

These via a BBC comment thread
on Obama and Gitmo trials:

Unfortunately whoever is in power are controlled by the same people. Obama and Bush may look radically different, but lift your neck slightly, and you will see the same puppet-master controlling both men.

Obama is just a far better ‘brand’ than Bush.
As for the Guantanamo issue – no surprise.

Craig, Southend
Recommended by 17 people
As much as I like Obama but I am becoming increasingly disappointed about his decisions regarding human rights issues.
I don’t understand the purpose of millitary trials. Does he not have enough faith in his country’s legal system?
Is that system too fair or how should I understand the argument that the military trials are made “fairer”?
This is not about the prisoners, it’s about the rule of law.

Stephan, Germany
Obama resorts to Bush’s ways. How sad.

Is it right? Of course not, unless he gives a FAIR trial.

But we all know Americans know nothing about the notion of fairness, they really want to suit their own selfish interests.

They’ll probably condemn them, trigger another one of those annoying ‘feel-good’ patriotism that they’re infamous for, and treat the whole thing as one-sided.

Recommended by 19 people

marisacat - 15 May 2009

Obama is just a far better ‘brand’ than Bush.

LOL Back when Sully was 26, during the GE in 1992, and much smarter than he is now, he said the same of Clinton: “He’s a better Bush”.

9. BooHooHooMan - 15 May 2009

LOL. Somebody popped me a lunchtime treat:

* [new] Obama has (0+ / 11-)

Hidden by:
missLotus, sarahnity, aimeeinkc, ebbinflo, blueyedace2, reahti, Inland, donnamarie, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, Linda S, rexymeteorite

* escalated the war in Afghanistan/ Pakistan, with horrific drone attacks causing hundreds of known civilian casualties. * albeit with certain changes in the rules of evidence, backed bush’s use of military commissions for abductees in the concentration camps. * backed the winger argument that pics of torture by our brave troops should be concealed from the American people and the world. * surrounded himself with whiz kids from Goldman Sachs and, accordingly, given trillions to Wall Street to make good their credit default swap scam.

Is this what we dreamt of in the dark days 2002-2003 when the Iraq war was popular and republican ascendancy seemed assured?

by acquittal on Fri May 15, 2009 at 06:00:30 AM PDT

[ Reply to This | RecommendHide ]

* [new] Really? Tell us more! n/t (17+ / 0-)

Recommended by:
Rita in DC, WestWind, ebbinflo, blueyedace2, boofdah, noweasels, raptavio, Texas Blue Dot, anotherdemocrat, donnamarie, gchaucer2, mayim, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, rb137, BFSkinner, Otteray Scribe, m00finsan

If you can’t fix it with a hammer, then you’ve got an electrical problem.

by panicbean on Fri May 15, 2009 at 06:05:45 AM PDT

[ Parent | Reply to This | RecommendHide ]
* [new] troll… (18+ / 0-)

Recommended by:
Rita in DC, WestWind, als10, blueyedace2, boofdah, noweasels, raptavio, Texas Blue Dot, anotherdemocrat, donnamarie, gchaucer2, dotster, mayim, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, rb137, BFSkinner, Otteray Scribe, m00finsan

Peace is not an absence of war, it is a virtue, a state of mind, a disposition for benevolence, confidence, justice.- B. Spinoza

by ebbinflo on Fri May 15, 2009 at 06:06:57 AM PDT

[ Parent | Reply to This | RecommendHide ]

10. catnip - 15 May 2009
11. lucid - 15 May 2009

Oh this poor man… They just kept throwing mney at him, so he took it! And he’s finlly found love through financial catastophe!

marisacat - 15 May 2009

I read that during the night… the economics reporter for the NYT?

I thought it was heart stopping.

lucid - 15 May 2009

I mean – it’s certainly sad, but I can’t believe the level of denial of the upper middle class. And then the financial media has the gall to blame the financial crisis on ‘those poor minorities who shouldn’t have bought homes in the first place’.

marisacat - 15 May 2009

Wonder what the house is worth now…. 2004, they bought not too far off the top of the market… roughly.

Also from what I have read, if you walk on your original mortgage it is a very different ball game in terms of your credit than if you walk on a re-fi.

[not that I understand these things]

lucid - 15 May 2009

I’m sure it’s come down some, but given the DC market, I don’t think you’ll see a CA or NV style collapse in areas like Silver Spring. My brother bought a house in Baltimore in 2003 and his is actually worth more now than it was then [though that is not true of people who bought condos, etc. downtown]. He’s also put a lot of work into though…

Anywho, have no idea what the difference would be for original vs. re-fi.

lucid - 15 May 2009

Also – something I’ve noticed reported recently on Calculated Risk, it appears that there are far more prime than sub-prime loans now in default. It’s people like this reporter who are defaulting on their mortgages, not the lower income minorities.

Frankly, from this whole mess, I sure as hell hope the federal government gets rid of the mortgage interest deduction. Not only is it incentive to take out loans that one can’t cover, it also give’s incentive to the re-fi business as attested to in the article, whereby you run up $50,000 in cc debt and then re-fi your house to make the interest tax deductible. Utter bullshit if you ask me.

marisacat - 15 May 2009

we are gettign now what is called “unemployment foreclosures”

Can’t wait for commercial RE to tank – or whatever is the looming nightmare.

I say float us to Guam NOW… LOL get it over with!

wu ming - 15 May 2009

commercial real estate is what sends us into the great depressio for reals. apparently the little banks and credit unions, who were not as wrapped up in the derivatives bullshit like the megabanks, are heavily invested in CRE. when that goes, and the wave of prime foreclosures starts to bite everyone else left standing, we’ll get those bank runs.

ugh. and the state cutting anything helpful at the same time.

marisacat - 15 May 2009

And the foundations and charities pulling back. As one reporter put it, for a couple of decades, the government, in all its parts and pieces, has consistently pulled back on social welfare, of all sorts. Foundations, charities and churches filled in. Now, less and less.

12. marisacat - 15 May 2009

Meet the Press: DNC’s Kaine, RNC’s Steele. Roundtable with Haass, Noonan, Brownstein, Meacham.

This Week: Sens. Kyl, Webb. Roundtable with Liz Cheney, Steve Schmidt, Carville, Vanden Heuvel, George Will.

Fox News Sunday: Notre Dame’s Rev. McBrien, National Director of Priests for Life Rev. Pavone, Sen. McConnell

Face the Nation: Rep. King, ACLU’s Romero. Roundtable with Dickerson, Biskupic.

State of the Union: OMB’s Orszag, Rep. Boehner, Sen. Chambliss

Madman in the Marketplace - 15 May 2009

that lineup’s like getting an enema with gasoline administered by a nurses assistant smoking a cigar.

marisacat - 15 May 2009

It’s so bad.

All it lacks is DiFi.

13. catnip - 15 May 2009

Just in case I forgot to mention it, there are some desperately stoopid people over at the Big Orange Kool-Aid Factory.

NYCO - 15 May 2009

Huh. I just stopped over there to gawk and ran into this…

EPA clears 42 of 48 mountain top removal permits for approval

A sad day for the southern Appalachian region. An unbelievable decision considering the Obama administration spent only a few hours looking at a single MTR site. Much like Bush’s attitude toward the Constitution, apparently the Clean Water Act is just a goddamned piece of paper. Pathetic. And the war on Appalachia continues.

marisacat - 15 May 2009


And remember, thru the ages, Obama TRIIIIED… he did! Over and over they will tell us, ”Look Not At What He Did Not Do, Remember Only That He TRIIIIED!”

It was bound to be a bad story for Appalachia under Ob and Oblings. The NYT declared the region racist. I don’t care whether it is or not. But it is “sacrifice land”. That should end.

marisacat - 15 May 2009

oh AND they tried to tell us for the umpteenth time it mattered, (how?) that Jackson was black or part black. WHO GIVES A SHIT? She was lousy in NJ and is lousy now.

Sharks being jumped all over the place.

14. marisacat - 15 May 2009


Forked tongues in both mouths.. all sides of both mouths… via Tapper:

[H]uman rights groups point out that in August 2008, then-Sen. Obama seemed to indicate he was leaning towards trying detainees in U.S. courts and through the court martial system. Responding to the Hamdan verdict, Mr. Obama’s campaign issued a statement saying:

“I commend the military officers who presided over this trial and served on the hearing panel under difficult and unprecedented circumstances. They and all our Armed Forces continue to serve this country with valor in the fight against terrorism. That the Hamdan trial — the first military commission trial with a guilty verdict since 9/11 — took several years of legal challenges to secure a conviction for material support for terrorism underscores the dangerous flaws in the Administration’s legal framework. It’s time to better protect the American people and our values by bringing swift and sure justice to terrorists through our courts and our Uniform Code of Military Justice. And while it is important to convict anyone who provides material support for terrorism, it is long past time to capture or kill Osama bin Laden and the terrorists who murdered nearly 3000 Americans.”

A White House official says that the president has “always envisioned a role for commissions, properly constituted,” and that the August statement was not meant to preclude them. …snip…

15. catnip - 15 May 2009

Apparently there’s a huge political meltdown in the UK over MPs’ expenses – a crisis that one CDN reporter described as one of the worst threats to democracy (or some such wording) that he’s ever seen. I guess the amount spent by an MP to get a light bulb screwed in at their home matters more than your gov’t torturing and supporting an illegal war – or something.

marisacat - 15 May 2009

well I think – from what i have read – they were using their office expense monies to maintain their homes.

Of course here they just use their PAC money. One is a budget from the state for official needs – and one is money given by lunatic supporters.

16. Arcturus - 15 May 2009

Robin Blaser’s obit’s now been written – only the Canadian press seems to have noticed – I only found out yesterday

The Truth is Laughter

Arcturus - 15 May 2009


Tarzan keeps saying, ‘ombawa,’
and everybody does everything
including the elephants

‘Wow!’ she said, ‘I’m out of the
rabbit hole and it’s the same.’

‘If there’s one thing Harry learned
to love more than the sacred, it was
the sacred in ruins.’

RB, The Holy Forest, p. 295 (1st gathered in Pell-Mell 1981-1988)

marisacat - 15 May 2009

oh thanks for posting that Arcturus…

From the first link at Globe and Mail… LOL last I looked Gino and Carlo’s was the same… only the slightly set apart area at the back held aging Italian peacocks… keeping an eye out. And few youthful poets about.

That is not to suggest, however that Mr. Blaser was all aestheticism. As a companion he was engaging, witty, gossipy and fun. Writer and teacher Stan Persky was a 21-year-old sailor who had just been discharged from the U.S. navy when he first met Mr. Blaser in Gino and Carlo’s bar in San Francisco in January 1962. Mr. Persky was sharing a drink with “a grousing and bored” Jack Spicer and anticipating a “long winter night” when Mr. Spicer happened to mention that Mr. Blaser had just returned from several years on the east coast.

17. marisacat - 15 May 2009

hmm Just saw this in the TruthOut email….

Jason Leopold | Ex-CIA Official: Agency Brass Lied to Congress About Interrogations


Jason Leopold, Truthout:

“Claims that Democrats were fully briefed on the Bush administration’s torture program have been leveled as recently as last December by Vice President Dick Cheney and in books by former Bush officials such as John Yoo, the former deputy assistant attorney general at the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC), who helped draft one of the four memos released last week.

But the veracity of those assertions have been called into question by former CIA official Mary O. McCarthy, who said senior agency officials lied to members of Congress during an intelligence briefing in 2005 when they said the agency did not violate treaties that bar, cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment of detainees during interrogations, according to a May 14, 2006 front-page story in The Washington Post.”

May they all claw away…


mattes - 15 May 2009

‘Hellish’ torture images shock US lawmakers—2004!


18. Arcturus - 15 May 2009

Sheehan’s on Flashpoints right now, talking about La Nan & the briefings- (roughly): ‘she’s either stupid, or a liar – why not split the diff & call her a stupid liar?’

19. BooHooHooMan - 15 May 2009

Schumer Scores 2 for NY Jewish Mafia
Obama of Soft Buttocks ,
Retainers and Hacks of every stripe rejoice.

U.S. Attorneys Named for Manhattan and New Jersey
By Benjamin Weiser

Preet Bharara Office of Senator Charles E. Schumer Preet Bharara would be the top federal prosecutor in Manhattan.

The White House announced Friday that President Obama would nominate Preet Bharara, chief counsel to Senator Charles E. Schumer, as United States attorney for the Southern District of New York.

Mr. Bharara, 40, was recommended by Mr. Schumer in February for the powerful post, which handles federal cases in Manhattan, the Bronx and six counties north of the city.

President Obama also said he would nominate Paul J. Fishman, 52, a partner at Friedman Kaplan Seiler & Adelman in Newark to be United States attorney for New Jersey.

20. Madman in the Marketplace - 15 May 2009
21. marisacat - 15 May 2009

Scahill has a piece up at C-Punch on torture…

It’s been clear for years, what the US Gov (no matter who runs it) is afraid of, is brutal depiction of sexual torture getting out (and th e more i read, this too likely ties into the selection of McChrystal and where he has been and what he has done).

But Ob says the photos are “not sensational”.

I think we are way past political pragmatism here. Which has been an over used fig leaf. Along with “unprecedented” and “historical”.

Scahill profiles several cases, one Omar Deghayes, a case being investigated by the Spanish court, who was arrested in Lahore Pakistan following 9/11

[D]eghayes was eventually moved to Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan, where he was beaten and “kept nude, as part of the process of humiliation due to his religion.” U.S. personnel placed Deghayes “inside a closed box with a lock and limited air.” He also described seeing U.S. guards sodomize an African prisoner and alleged guards “forced petrol and benzene up the anuses of the prisoners.”

“The camp looked like the Nazi camps that I saw in films,” Deghayes said.

When Deghayes finally arrived at Guantánamo in September 2002, he found himself the target of the feared IRF teams.

“The IRF team sprayed Mr. Deghayes with mace; they threw him in the air and let him fall on his face … ” according to the Spanish investigation. Deghayes says he also endured a “sexual attack.” In March 2004, after being “sprayed in the eyes with mace,” Deghayes says authorities refused to provide him with medical attention, causing him to permanently lose sight in his right eye. Stafford Smith described the incident: …snip…

Scahill indicates in the last section of the article, that the worst of the torture teams “the IRF” are still operating at Gitmo.

Oh but we are closing that so no worry. Right?

Madman in the Marketplace - 16 May 2009

“forced petrol and benzene up the anuses of the prisoners.”

ugh, now I feel guilty for the gasoline enema joke above. Who the fuck DOES that to another helpless human being?

BooHooHooMan - 16 May 2009

It’s been clear for years, what the US Gov (no matter who runs it) is afraid of, is brutal depiction of sexual torture getting out

Uncle Sam the tough cop, Uncle Sam the soldier,
Uncle Sam the Hero, yeh it sold for a while.

Uncle Sam, the in-to-leather-sadist
rendering death by sodomy in the basement ?

In such a lovely home?
Now what will become of Aunt Israel?

22. marisacat - 15 May 2009

Too funny!

Tom Ricks says Ob was rolled by his generals. Twice. So what is new? They are IN CHARGE, the mil is… and they are rolling us downhill and into a gully.

This is the danger of a president with no personal power. None.

They slapped him on the prow of the ship, and said SMILE!

Ricks dresses it up for the public… more funnies:

But to get rolled twice — well, he must think he is running up some pretty big chits with them. I know he is trying to do the right thing but at some point he is going to have to say, My way or the highway.

He’s getting rolled to gain power. Or tit for tat. Or getting used to being rolled. Or he agrees. Getting rolled for pragmatism. Historical rolling. Unprecedented rolling (well that it’s not!)


23. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 May 2009

Teh One just named Republican Gov. Jon Huntsman from Idaho to be Ambassador to China. Anybody know anything about him? Too lazy just yet to google.

wu ming - 16 May 2009

only thing i’ve been able to figure out is that huntsman is fluent in mandarin, adopted a chinese daughter, did his mormon mission in taiwan in the 80s, and was an ambassador to singapore for bush the elder. nothing about his view re. china, asia or taiwan, although i’m guessing he’s in line with the overall corporate pro-biz in china angle. if he’s anything bus dismissive of taiwan (much less its democracy) it’ll be a pleasant surprise.

the mormons can be irritating as all hell, but to their credit they do actually get outside the american bubble on mission, and learn languages. crazy motherfuckers riding bikes here, what with the traffic and the muggy heat.

Madman in the Marketplace - 16 May 2009

Thanks for the info …

I had to turn the news off. They’re fawning over the Op Rescue nutters in Indiana, and actually broadcasting those horrible posters as they stand in front of the zealots.

wu ming - 16 May 2009

oh, and huntsman is from utah, not idaho. recently made some waves by backing civil unions in idaho, as a GOPer.

24. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 May 2009

Weakland says he didn’t know priests’ abuse was crime

In the early years of the sex abuse scandal in Milwaukee, retired Archbishop Rembert G. Weakland says in his soon-to-be released memoir, he did not comprehend the potential harm to victims or understand that what the priests had done constituted a crime.

“We all considered sexual abuse of minors as a moral evil, but had no understanding of its criminal nature,” Weakland says in the book, “A Pilgrim in a Pilgrim Church,” due out in June.

Weakland said he initially “accepted naively the common view that it was not necessary to worry about the effects on the youngsters: either they would not remember or they would ‘grow out of it.’ “

Clergy victims reacted angrily to the revelation.

“It’s beyond belief. He’s either lying or he’s so self-deceived that he’s inventing fanciful stories,” said Peter Isely, Midwest director for the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP. “These have always been crimes.”

Weakland’s handling of the clergy sex abuse scandal is just one chapter in the wide-ranging memoir that recounts his childhood in the coal-mining region of Pennsylvania, his life as a Benedictine monk, his struggles with his own homosexuality, his strained relationship with Pope John Paul II and finally his public fall from grace in Milwaukee.

Weakland retired in 2002 after it became known that he paid $450,000 in 1998 to a man who had accused him of date rape years earlier.

Weakland has declined to be interviewed by the Journal Sentinel. Weakland said in the book that he eventually came to question the notion that victims would forget or “grow out of” the trauma induced by abuse.

“My general reasoning was that there were probably some kids who ‘grew out of it,’ and then some who were deeply disturbed for life,” he wrote.

wu ming - 16 May 2009

wow. just wow.

NYCO - 16 May 2009

I feel sorry for this guy for having been saddled with a name like Rembert Weakland. Think he got beat up a lot in the fourth grade?

25. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 May 2009

Was It the National Security Bureaucrats Who Forced Obama to Hold on to the Torture Photos?

On average, it takes about 100 days for the great Executive Branch bureaucracy to begin to work its way and will on the new officials, and that threshold has now been crossed. If anyone believes a rookie president and his new team can take over the executive branch, and actually run it without the cooperation of the permanent people, those who remain in place as presidents and their appointees come and go, he or she does not understand how Washington really works. Political appointees come and go, but the folks who actually run the government have an ongoing agenda of trying not to let these part-time political people screw it up too badly. Nowhere are there more of these permanent career professionals than in the departments and agencies that constitute the national security community.

If that’s so, where were they when Bush was driving the country over a cliff? Oh, that’s right … many of them AGREED with Bush/Cheney. Or as Dean says, maybe this mighty beast was run over by Bush/Cheney, which raises the question about just how powerful and smart they really are:

From generals and admirals at the Pentagon to Foreign Service officers in Foggy Bottom, along with untold thousands of the nameless and unknown career civil servants who soldier on to protect our national security, there is anger and resentment. Most of these people are not political in the partisan sense; rather, they work in and for our government to keep the nation safe, and take pride in their work.

For the past eight years, the Bush Administration has marginalized them, manipulated them, and beaten them down. Dick Cheney, in particular, worked to keep the national security professionals submissive, and to ignore their good advice. In a move that was unheard of for a Vice President, Cheney created his own National Security Council, which initially was better staffed and more knowledgeable than the statutory NSC. Cheney placed personal emissaries throughout the national security structure, not only to control it but to be certain that he was always aware of what it was doing, so he could operate accordingly. Dick Cheney had his own agenda, and it proved a disaster. Cheney cost the nation blood and treasure with his preemptive Iraq war. He embarrassed the United States the world over by demanding (and continuing to demand) that we use torture.

Our national security professionals have been humiliated. President Obama is a president who listens, and he has been told that airing the dirty linen that the Bush folks left behind will cause more harm than good. No doubt his top national security advisers – all products of the national security bureaucracy – started giving him serious heads-up talks when it appeared he was going to win the election, for that is when he began saying that he was more interested in looking forward than looking back, and that to investigate torture would only be looking back.

When President Obama hinted that he might prosecute those engaged in torture, he was forced to run out to the CIA for a stroking session to placate these national security professionals, assuring them that he was not going to prosecute any of them for following orders of the Bush/Cheney White House. The national security bureaucracy is testing its influence with the new president – and like all presidents, he will take some of its advice and reject other advice it gives. Right now, he is trying to figure out what to do.

catnip - 16 May 2009

I think all pics of Jesus’ torture on the cross should be banned. What do you say, Obama?

26. Madman in the Marketplace - 16 May 2009

Even with Obama in charge, anti-war Democrats powerless

WASHINGTON — The anti-war crowd had waited years for this moment, when it could finally use its political muscle to end or at least sharply curtail American involvement in a war that seems endless.

Instead, Congress’ most vocal anti-war activists were badly outnumbered this week when they tried to define an exit strategy for U.S. involvement in Afghanistan.

“We need a plan while we are there and a strategy for leaving,” said Rep. Donna Edwards, D-Md., who last year defeated an eight-term incumbent Democrat who backed the Iraq war. “We don’t have it.”

They weren’t even allowed a vote on a plan. It was a setback because for years, anti-war lawmakers lacked the votes they needed to impose restrictions on former President George W. Bush’s war in Iraq. Now, the president is a Democrat, and the Democrats have a 79-seat majority in the House of Representatives and 59 Senate seats, including two independents, which gives them their biggest margins since the early 1990s.

Nevertheless, the anti-war crowd remains as impotent as it was during the Bush years amid widespread support for President Barack Obama and a public that’s preoccupied with economic issues and largely unperturbed by the escalating war in Afghanistan.

“Afghanistan simply doesn’t arouse the same kind of broad opposition that Iraq did,” said John Pitney, a professor of American politics at Claremont McKenna College in California.

27. catnip - 16 May 2009

Death in Libya, betrayal in the west

Doing Gaddafi’s dirty work.

28. catnip - 16 May 2009
29. catnip - 16 May 2009

New, useful word! “metarded”

30. marisacat - 16 May 2009

As we wave from the dock:

A trip to Africa

Along with expected stops in Russia and Italy, Obama will visit Africa in July — a month after his trip to Egypt.

It’s a bit more international travel than some had expected, with the understanding that his domestic focus would leave Secretary of State Clinton the international profile.

Details from the White House:

The President and Mrs. Obama will visit Accra, Ghana, from July 10 to 11. While in Ghana, the President will discuss a range of bilateral and regional issues with Ghanaian President Mills. The President and Mrs. Obama look forward to strengthening the U.S. relationship with one of our most trusted partners in sub-Saharan Africa, and to highlighting the critical role that sound governance and civil society play in promoting lasting development.

The full readout: …snip…

catnip - 16 May 2009

It’s a bit more international travel than some had expected, with the understanding that his domestic focus would leave Secretary of State Clinton the international profile.

Secretary of State who?

Obama’s face is all over everything. His cabinet is invisible.

Madman in the Marketplace - 16 May 2009

I see that one of his readers had to point out to this meathead that this would be a SECOND trip to Africa, since Egypt is IN Africa.

31. catnip - 16 May 2009
BooHooHooMan - 16 May 2009

LOL. Why? Because according to DK’s
“recommended” list,

They Must REALLY Be Scared Of Her
by Muzikal203 [Subscribe]
Sat May 16, 2009 at 10:06:13 AM PDT

. . . and by “her” I mean Nancy Pelosi.

I mean the WhOoop’s! Fucked Again Gang hasta- maybe after a consult, then downing their pasta ,
they just gotsta sort out their narrative on La Nan.

Faye Raye? Dorothy?
Swarmed by every gorilla and flying chimp in DC?
Or Stealthy Super- Dupo- Hero-ette?
Aquawoman is it? For La Nan?
She just happened to be in the underwater neighborhood
when she heard about the Waterboarding?

32. marisacat - 16 May 2009

hmm Perrin writes an epitaph for The Nation. Years overdue and if I may say so, far too nice – still. A nice slam or two at Katrina who should be removed or never have been allowed to ascend….. tho it hardly matters anymore. And a good slam or two at another particularly unctuous ObRama lover. They both perpetrate what I think of as soft “academic-styled lies”. Modulated, moderate, mild… offered in a teaching or worrying mode… careful never to disturb But still lies.

33. marisacat - 16 May 2009


New one


………………….. 😯 ………..

34. BooHooHooMan - 16 May 2009

In a Kestrelton Heston post on DK, on the latest little snit in what is becoming Terry McAuliffe Freakshow in Virginia,

a Battle of the Blogshills ensues,
Jerome Armstrong ends up getting called out

and lo and behold , Armstrong shows up IMMEDIATELY,
~ to defend his honor.
😆 😆 😆
Then Runs Away at the mention of the SEC.

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