Friday, November 07, 2008

Permit me to introduce myself. My name is Coyote. Wile E. Coyote, genius.

There's an almost surreal quality to the outgoing Bush administration publicly warning president-elect Obama that terrorists see transitions between governments as a good time to attack.

This is after all the administration that ignored multiple warnings about the 9/11 attacks from Clinton administration officials like Sandy Berger, Richard Clarke or George Tenet in order to focus on the important issues like renewing Star Wars missile defense program. Berger warned Condoleeza Rice months before the attacks that terrorism would "consume far more of her time than she would have imagined."

“For the next 75 days, all of us must ensure that the next president and his team can hit the ground running,” Mr. Bush said in an emotional speech to hundreds of employees of the executive branch on the South Lawn of the White House.
Dude, the next president isn't going to just hit the ground running. He's going to leave your worthless team in the dust. You're about to see what he feels like to be the Coyote trying to catch the Roadrunner.

I did find this a bit annoying:

Mr. Bush has said he is determined to conduct an orderly transition. The White House wants to avoid a repeat of the kind of news reports that plagued President Bill Clinton when he left office amid questions about whether members of his staff, irked at having to turn their offices over to Republicans, removed the letter W from some computer keyboards.
How nice of the author of this article to underplay what exploded into a major vandalism scandal only a few days after Bush took office. It included accusations that the outgoing Clinton administration cut telephone wires, wrecked computers, left graffiti on the walls, stole presidential seals and even towels off of Air Force One. A General Accounting Office investigation found most of the accusations to be bunk.

"Certainly people inside the [Bush] administration fed this story," says an angry John Podesta, Clinton's former chief of staff. "At least they got what they wanted out of it."

A close look at the way the scandal mushroomed bolsters Podesta's view: The Bush administration helped the vandal scandal along, publicly appearing to try to douse the flames, while privately fanning them with detailed, off-the-record allegations of damage. On Tuesday, after the GAO's review was made public, Fleischer was left trying to spin himself out of a very deep hole, insisting he had tried to "knock down" the vandal story when it first emerged.

But a transcript of Fleischer's Jan. 25 briefing on the issue contradicts him. It shows the Bush spokesman coyly encouraging reporters' suspicions about the vandal scandal, while refusing to confirm or deny the reports of damage. According to one leading White House reporter, the story was also nudged along by two unnamed Bush aides.
Yesterday, Bush was referring to this "scandal" when he told his staff without any sense of irony to “conduct yourselves with the decency and professionalism that you have shown throughout my time in office.”
After 8 years of this administration we've seen decency and professionalism as something that are in short supply at this White House. Lying about their opponents and bare-knuckled politics are the way they conduct business. They have been from the start.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Hey everybody, we're all gonna get laid.

So much going on today!

Reporting from London -- If history records a sudden surge in carbon emissions on Wednesday, it may be due to the collective exhalation of relief and joy by the hundreds of millions -- perhaps billions -- of people around the globe who watched, waited and prayed for Barack Obama to be elected president of the United States.

Gordo goes down in flames. It's about time. There've been a number of letters to the editor of the local paper from Eastern Oregon whining that, if the state elects two Democratic Senators they won't be represented. To this I simply say "STFU and sit down." 1) If Gordon Smith had been a real Republican moderate in the mold of Bob Packwood or Tom McCall he would've been Senator for life and 2) In Texas over 2 million people voted for challenger Rick Noriega in his unsuccessful bid to defeat John Cornyn. Those 2 million people have no representation in the U.S. Senate by this weird logic.

As far as I'm concerned the far right has had more than enough representation in the nation's capital these last twenty years.

"Jurassic Park" author Michael Crichton is dead. I've enjoyed a lot of his earlier work but his recent cranky pseudo-scientific scepticism towards the concept of human activity contributing to global warming has caused me to question his greatness as a sci-fi writer.

Not to toot my own horn too much but in a fake article from the future I wrote back on October 10th I had this: A state-by-state breakdown of those returns gave the President-elect more than 345 electoral votes, a commanding victory in the Electoral College, which requires 270 for election. His victory included states such as North Carolina and Virginia given to choosing Republican candidates in the last several Presidential elections.

I should buy a lottery ticket.

Ubermilf and randal graves have posts that riff off of "Caddyshack" and "Animal House" respectively. I've seen that latter film a couple of times...

These four photos say everything about the election.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

It's a perfect moment. A soft light, a scent in the air, the quiet murmur of the city. A surge of love, an urge to help mankind overcomes her.

I haven't slept much this week.

Part of it's been work. We are absolutely nuts at work. It's been early mornings and late nights almost every day.

Another part of it is my son. He got hit in the knee in the last few minutes of the last football practice of the season. I've been worrying that it was a torn ACL and the inevitable surgery in that case. (Thankfully an MRI showed it was his ACL but it was strained, not torn.)

But what's really been keeping me up at night has been the weight of last night's election. I suspect that, like many of you, it's been a little overwhelming when you step back and consider what just happened in the context of this nation's history. The results may have been fate accompli for over a month now, but that doesn't make it any less stunning. Judging by all the tears I saw last night, including on the face of one Tom Brokaw, I think that's a fair assesment.

I had a number of family and friends call me after Obama was declared the winner to share this moment. My best buddy since grade school was one of those people. We're both Ducks who earned undergraduate degrees in history from that great university.

It's difficult to put how we were feeling into words but we both came to the conclusion that Obama's win felt a lot like the fall of the Berlin Wall. The sense that what we were watching unfold live was a historical event of such magnitude that whole chapters of history books will be dedicated to it in the future and the realization that history marches slowly, inescapably forward.

Just consider for a second that the Berlin Wall represented from it's formation in 1961 both literally and metaphorically; the immeasurable power of the totalitarian GDR and Soviet states. These states had absolute control over the lives of their citizens. They controlled what you saw on the news, what you did for a living, what you wore, where and who you could worship and even what you could wear. History ground those "invincible" states and their wall into dust.

History's progress is unstoppable.

I went on a little rant to that effect a couple of days ago at Fran's place. We tend to get caught up in fighting those who, through their actions, try and lean up against the monolithic march of history to try and stop its progress. We (because I most certainly include myself) seem to tend to get caught up in the indignity of those that insist that man doesn't contribute to global warming, or that a woman should never be President or that lesbian and gay Americans shouldn't enjoy the same rights as everybody else.

These are worthy fights but I do think it doesn't hurt us to step back and consider the bigger picture once in a while. Those people that voted on Proposition 8 in California yesterday are not going to win this battle, regardless of the results of that vote. They are fighting history, and just as assuredly as history eviscerated that ugly cement wall in Berlin and the governments it represented or elected an African-American man to the highest office in the land when a little over a hundred years ago he wouldn't even be considered a citizen of this country, history will roll over them as well. It's simply inevitable.

The writing is on the wall.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Am I going MAD, or did the word "think" escape your lips? You were not hired for your brains, you hippopotamic land mass.

My last post EVER on John McCain.

As McCain loses tomorrow there's going to be some wailing and gnashing of the teeth in Republican circles but what's going to be in short supply, especially as far the candidate is concerned, is a healthy dose of self-reflection.

McCain's going to blame the media, Acorn and even the moronic Sarah Palin (as if he had nothing to do with her being on the ticket) for his loss. The only person he won't be blaming is one John McCain. Arguably the person most responsible outside of Barack Obama.

If McCain really wants to know why his dream of being President plowed into the ground faster than one of those planes he used to pilot he need look no further than the mirror. Going back to well before the election even started or he tossed his hat in the ring.

The media had nothing to do with his regular support to George W. Bush and his capitulation on everything from torture to tax cuts. Acorn isn't responsible for the fact that McCain has been an Iraq war booster from the start. Barack Obama had nothing to do with McCain lack of temperament going back years when voters are looking for somebody a bit more... rational.

McCain will lose tomorrow because of choices he made not because of outside forces. He's a victim of nobody but himself.

He's too conservative for America.

Well, my days of taking you seriously are certainly coming to a middle.

We had a great time yesterday watching a Firefly marathon with don snabulus and his missus ladybug.

Best. Show. Ever.