Thursday, June 08, 2006

Blogger continues to be f-ed up.

I have three posts in the hopper but can't upload or link pictures. Grrrr.

Ok, you die. You walk away with a severe limp.

It's so nice to see the White House has the Zarqawi death in perspective.

The import of the news was immediately clear to everybody in the room. Iraq, officials have acknowledged, is the single most important dark cloud hanging over this White House. Officials see the continued troubles there — and the sparse good news from there — as the single most important factor in the president's low approval ratings, hobbling his ability to pursue his agenda not only abroad but also at home.

Forget the beheadings and terrorist activity. Zarqawi was holding up the President's push to repeal the Paris Hilton tax.

Of course if he'd taken him out when he had the chance:

Failure to Hit Zarqawi's Camp By SCOT J. PALTROW Staff Reporter of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL October 25, 2004; Page A3

As the toll of mayhem inspired by terrorist leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi mounts in Iraq, some former officials and military officers increasingly wonder whether the Bush administration made a mistake months before the start of the war by stopping the military from attacking his camp in the northeastern part of that country.


Another factor, though, was fear that a strike on the camp could stir up opposition while the administration was trying to build an international coalition to launch an invasion of Iraq. Lawrence Di Rita, the Pentagon's chief spokesman, said in an interview that the reasons for not striking included "the president's decision to engage the international community on Iraq." Mr. Di Rita said the camp was of interest only because it was believed to be producing chemical weapons. He also cited several potential logistical problems in planning a strike, such as getting enough ground troops into the area, and the camp's large size.

Now would be a good time to remind the world that the reason the Bush administration didn't take out the terrorist al-Zarqawi five years ago is because they needed to have a terrorist in Iraq in order to justify the invasion and occupation of that country.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Marriage, fun? Fiddle-dee-dee. Fun for men you mean.

Darn those gay activist Senators who voted against the marriage amendment.

A lot of people seem to still have this quaint idea that the constitution is nothing more than a detailed list of the government's rights. They see it as a checklist of rights we've allowed our government to have. Many call these people "constitutional scholars."

I call them maroons.

Those of us out here in Wal-Mart loving middle America know what the constitution is really suppossed to be: a list of the stuff we as citizens can and, more importantly, can't do. So we get to keep guns, go to church where and when we want (as long as it has a cross) and we get to say NO when Nathan Lane wants to tie the knot with Elton John.

So, Lone Star, now you see that evil will always triumph because good is dumb.

Chris Bowers has become the go to guy for post-election analysis. I'm personally most interested in Busby's loss since that's the race most of the progressive blogshpere put their efforts into-

In 2004, Busby lost the CA-50 by 22.0%. Today, it looks like she will lose by around 4.5%. And that was with the NRCC spending $4.5M on the race. If Republicans want to spin losing 18 points after spending $4.5M of committee money as a good thing, go for it. After all, spin is basically why they spent so much money on this race. By blowing their wad in a solidly Republican district, they wanted to change the media narrative on the election in their favor. It will probably work, given how subservient and generally inaccurate the media tends to be when it comes to Republicans and elections. In reality, for a Republican candidate to pull 49.5% of the vote in a district with 44.5% Republican registration is shocking. Given those numbers, Bilbray probably managed all of 20% of the vote among independents.

No matter what the media says, no Democrat should be mistaken about this result. First, this is a huge, seismic shift in our favor that bodes extremely well for November. If we receive an 18% shift nationwide, we will win the House easily. If Republican candidates are pulling only 20% of the independent vote, the Indycrat realignment is still on.

Despite the happy talk and despite the fact that this race was considered a long shot I can't help but feel a strong sense of disturbance in the force. This does not bode well for Democrats.

Look, the media narrative is everything. If they say that the Republicans retention of this seat means the Democrats really aren't on the edge of a tidal change but it's business as usual then that's how the story will play out from here November despite the reality of polls, motivated voters in the Democratic base, etc. Howard Dean and the DNC should have recognized this and met the Republican spending in kind. It was a huge strategic misstep, IMHO, that they didn't.

On the last election night I invited a progressive friend who was only marginally involved in politics to the Democratic party election night gathering at the convention center so that we could celebrate the defeat of the President we hold in such disdain among people who shared our belief that America could do better.

I can still vividly recall the wild cheering that drowned out Senator Wyden's victory speech because the silent giant screens behind him showed some political pundit or other hypothetically flipping states for Kerry to show what a long shot it would be for him to win. Most of the crowd seemed to believe these results were real, rather than the efforts of some blow-dried airhead going out of his way to demonstrate how he firmly grasped the math of the electoral college that the rest of the country had mastered by the time they were twelve. The realization that he was simply playing with the toys on his cool election night set and that Kerry HAD lost was one of the saddest moments I've ever had to sit through.

Point is when I look at the political situation right now and consider whether I want to be at an election night party come November I just can't see myself there. I just don't have the strength to sit with a group of a thousand other realists and watch a small minority of Americans that also happens to be a majority of voters take America down the path to candyland one more time. I love this country to much to watch them smother her slowly to death with a pillow.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006


I have to fly to Seattle for the day on business and won't have access to a computer.

Have bouncy, flouncy, bouncy, flouncy fun, fun, fun, fun, fun!

Why, Rhett, how many times have I told you to wash up after weekly cross-burnin'?

This post by David Neiwert spells out how we have the immigration and border security debate completely assed-backwards. On the very same week that an extremist islamic cell is broken up in Canada we use our National Guard to patrol the Mexican border.

In other words, there are many more multiple opportunities for Islamist terrorists to enter the United States from Canada than there are from Mexico. Crossing the Canadian border in untracked areas, unlike the Mexican border, is neither terribly hazardous nor even particularly daunting.

However, most terrorism experts will tell you that terrorists prefer to travel incognito with fake papers and are most likely to try crossing through a regular port of entry with those papers. Remote border crossings are a real risk for such operatives because they become more exposed out in the open, rather than simply mingling in with the thousands who cross borders legally every day.

I know groups like the Minutemen see themselves as patriotic modern day Paul Reveres ("The brownies are comin', the brownies are comin'!") but they look to my eyes like nothing more than Klan members on a casual Friday.

But what about our leadership in Washington? When the country is run by cowardly hillbillys, incompetent cowardly hillbillys at that, I don't think we can expect any better, unfortunately.

(what is the plural of "hillbilly" anyway?)

Monday, June 05, 2006

Walking around like regular people. They don't see each other. They only see what they want to see. They don't know they're dead.

I used to be on the wrong side of quite a few political topics, not the least of which was gay rights/ gay marriage.

That issue stands out for me because it's one of those only things in my life in which I've had one of those scales-falling-from-the-eyes moments in which I had an ephiphany that caused me to totally reconsider my beliefs.

I was having an argument with a friend in which I was taking the traditional Catholic position that homosexuality was wrong and gays should not be allowed to marry. My friend pulled a perfect rhetorical rope-a-dope on me. I had just said sex within marriage must be life-affirming.

"What does that mean?" My friend asked.

"It means," I replied arrogantly, "that there has to be a potential for pregnancy."

"Oh," my friend said. He thought for a second then posited "What if it's a happily married couple that's infertile? Could they still make love? Couldn't 'life affirming" be a little more than a possible baby?"

Which left me wishing that I was intellectually dishonest enough to change the subject to the weather rather than admit he had an actual point.

You, Mr. Gordon. You didn't play fair! You cheated.

Puny speeding tickets mean nothing to me.

Take for instance the one I just got on the way to work. I politely thanked the officer and simply wrote the following in the margin:

"Under article four of the constitution and powers reserved to the executive ORS 1212 governing governance of traffic speed through municipalities shall not apply between milepost 14 and milepost 15 on Highway 26 in accordance with national security and the need to avoid more terrorist attacks like those of September the 11th."