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May 31, 2004

Happy Memorial Day

Best wishes. Taking the day off.

Posted by Eric at 12:00 AM | Comments (14)

Happy Memorial Day

Best wishes. Taking the day off.

Posted by Eric at 12:00 AM | Comments (1)

May 30, 2004

Cheney Helped Halliburton in Iraq

Well, we all knew this was happening, but it helps to reinforce the point about corporate corruption in the Bush administration. From Reuters:

A Pentagon e-mail said Vice President Dick Cheney's office "coordinated" a multibillion-dollar Iraq reconstruction contract awarded to his former employer Halliburton, Time magazine reported on Sunday.
The e-mail, sent by an Army Corps of Engineers official on March 5, 2003, said Douglas Feith, a senior Pentagon official, provided arrangements for the RIO contract, or Restore Iraqi Oil, between Halliburton and the U.S. government, Time said.

The e-mail said Feith, who reports to Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, approved arrangements for the contract "contingent on informing WH (White House) tomorrow. We anticipate no issues since action has been coordinated w VP's (vice president's) office."

A spokesman for Cheney said his office had no role in the contract process. "Vice President Cheney and his office have had no involvement whatsoever in government contracting matters since he left private business to run for vice president," said Kevin Kellems, a spokesman for Cheney.

Still, Cheney has significant ties to Halliburton:
Cheney still receives about $150,000 a year in deferred payments for work he performed as chairman. He also holds more than 433,000 stock options, according to a report last fall by the Congressional Research Office requested by Sen. Frank Lautenberg, a New Jersey Democrat.

Posted by Eric at 10:59 PM | Comments (15)

Cheney Helped Halliburton in Iraq

Well, we all knew this was happening, but it helps to reinforce the point about corporate corruption in the Bush administration. From Reuters:

A Pentagon e-mail said Vice President Dick Cheney's office "coordinated" a multibillion-dollar Iraq reconstruction contract awarded to his former employer Halliburton, Time magazine reported on Sunday.
The e-mail, sent by an Army Corps of Engineers official on March 5, 2003, said Douglas Feith, a senior Pentagon official, provided arrangements for the RIO contract, or Restore Iraqi Oil, between Halliburton and the U.S. government, Time said.

The e-mail said Feith, who reports to Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, approved arrangements for the contract "contingent on informing WH (White House) tomorrow. We anticipate no issues since action has been coordinated w VP's (vice president's) office."

A spokesman for Cheney said his office had no role in the contract process. "Vice President Cheney and his office have had no involvement whatsoever in government contracting matters since he left private business to run for vice president," said Kevin Kellems, a spokesman for Cheney.

Still, Cheney has significant ties to Halliburton:
Cheney still receives about $150,000 a year in deferred payments for work he performed as chairman. He also holds more than 433,000 stock options, according to a report last fall by the Congressional Research Office requested by Sen. Frank Lautenberg, a New Jersey Democrat.

Posted by Eric at 10:59 PM | Comments (6)

May 29, 2004

Bush's 3rd Party Threat?

With the Libertarian National Convention meeting in Atlanta this weekend, does the 3rd party have a chance to take away votes from Bush? Many think so, according to CBS:

It is a hypothesis not yet made in the mainstream media. But interviews with third-party experts and activists across the country, as well as recent political patterns, illustrate that there could be a conservative rear-guard political attack against President Bush.

Libertarians will be on at least 49 state ballots, several more than the most optimistic expectations of Nader. While Democrats rally around their nominee, the base of the Republican Party is showing some signs of fragmentation ... “The Libertarians will impact Republicans more than Nader will impact Democrats,” said Lawrence Jacobs, the director of the 2004 Elections Project for the Humphrey Institute at the University of Minnesota and possibly the nation’s preeminent expert on third-party politics.

In the key battleground state of Wisconsin, the 2002 Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Ed Thompson garnered about 185,000 votes, a startling 10.5 percent. The new governor, Democrat Jim Doyle, won the state by about 75,000 votes.

Who are the main candidates?
The two personalities most likely to be nominated at next week’s Libertarian convention in Atlanta include Gary Nolan, a talk-radio host and longtime Libertarian, and Aaron Russo, a successful Hollywood producer who ran a strong gubernatorial campaign in Nevada in 1998 ... Russo, whose films have won three Golden Globes, believes he can get a million voters to contribute $100 each. Russo boasts that his Web site now gets more traffic than Nader's. He says he has connected support, like legendary actor Jack Nicholson, who did an ad campaign for him in 1998 but has not, as of yet, endorsed Russo for president.
The two main candidates and their problems with the GOP. Nolan:
As a small businessman in Cleveland, Ohio, I was initially attracted to the Republican Party. However, over time, I became increasingly frustrated with their bloated budgets and continuing failure to cut spending. Finally, during a live nationwide radio broadcast in January 1999, I publicly resigned from the Republican Party and became a proud card-carrying member of the Libertarian Party.
And Hollywood producer Russo:
Aaron Russo decided to run for Governor of Nevada in the 1998 election, even though he had never run for or held a political office. Against all odds, he received 26% of the vote in a four-way race in the Republican primary, while building the largest grassroots volunteer organization in Nevada gubernatorial history. At the height of his campaign, Russo earned an unexpected 47% in the polls as a political outsider, posing a serious threat to his political opponents. After that highly successful experience, he resigned from the Republican Party, and registered as an Independent, believing that both major political parties don’t serve the American public's interest and actually cause great harm. As the result of his support in Nevada, Russo helped mobilize a large enough coalition of people to vote to legalize the medical use of marijuana against the Governor’s opposition. He was geared to run again for the 2002 gubernatorial election in Nevada, but withdrew to battle cancer.

While successfully battling bladder cancer, (using alternative medicine, against his doctor's wishes, combined with surgery) Russo watched the government implement the unconstitutional and immoral Patriot Act followed by the unsanctioned War on Iraq. As his health strengthened, so did his resolve. As the adage goes, “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”, and for Russo this meant taking on his greatest challenge – to enter the Presidential race in order to steer this great country back onto the course established by the Constitution. He wants to return the federal government back to its proper role in people’s lives and bring our troops home from Iraq and the rest of the world.

Posted by Eric at 05:49 PM | Comments (18)

Bush's 3rd Party Threat?

With the Libertarian National Convention meeting in Atlanta this weekend, does the 3rd party have a chance to take away votes from Bush? Many think so, according to CBS:

It is a hypothesis not yet made in the mainstream media. But interviews with third-party experts and activists across the country, as well as recent political patterns, illustrate that there could be a conservative rear-guard political attack against President Bush.

Libertarians will be on at least 49 state ballots, several more than the most optimistic expectations of Nader. While Democrats rally around their nominee, the base of the Republican Party is showing some signs of fragmentation ... “The Libertarians will impact Republicans more than Nader will impact Democrats,” said Lawrence Jacobs, the director of the 2004 Elections Project for the Humphrey Institute at the University of Minnesota and possibly the nation’s preeminent expert on third-party politics.

In the key battleground state of Wisconsin, the 2002 Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Ed Thompson garnered about 185,000 votes, a startling 10.5 percent. The new governor, Democrat Jim Doyle, won the state by about 75,000 votes.

Who are the main candidates?
The two personalities most likely to be nominated at next week’s Libertarian convention in Atlanta include Gary Nolan, a talk-radio host and longtime Libertarian, and Aaron Russo, a successful Hollywood producer who ran a strong gubernatorial campaign in Nevada in 1998 ... Russo, whose films have won three Golden Globes, believes he can get a million voters to contribute $100 each. Russo boasts that his Web site now gets more traffic than Nader's. He says he has connected support, like legendary actor Jack Nicholson, who did an ad campaign for him in 1998 but has not, as of yet, endorsed Russo for president.
The two main candidates and their problems with the GOP. Nolan:
As a small businessman in Cleveland, Ohio, I was initially attracted to the Republican Party. However, over time, I became increasingly frustrated with their bloated budgets and continuing failure to cut spending. Finally, during a live nationwide radio broadcast in January 1999, I publicly resigned from the Republican Party and became a proud card-carrying member of the Libertarian Party.
And Hollywood producer Russo:
Aaron Russo decided to run for Governor of Nevada in the 1998 election, even though he had never run for or held a political office. Against all odds, he received 26% of the vote in a four-way race in the Republican primary, while building the largest grassroots volunteer organization in Nevada gubernatorial history. At the height of his campaign, Russo earned an unexpected 47% in the polls as a political outsider, posing a serious threat to his political opponents. After that highly successful experience, he resigned from the Republican Party, and registered as an Independent, believing that both major political parties don’t serve the American public's interest and actually cause great harm. As the result of his support in Nevada, Russo helped mobilize a large enough coalition of people to vote to legalize the medical use of marijuana against the Governor’s opposition. He was geared to run again for the 2002 gubernatorial election in Nevada, but withdrew to battle cancer.

While successfully battling bladder cancer, (using alternative medicine, against his doctor's wishes, combined with surgery) Russo watched the government implement the unconstitutional and immoral Patriot Act followed by the unsanctioned War on Iraq. As his health strengthened, so did his resolve. As the adage goes, “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”, and for Russo this meant taking on his greatest challenge – to enter the Presidential race in order to steer this great country back onto the course established by the Constitution. He wants to return the federal government back to its proper role in people’s lives and bring our troops home from Iraq and the rest of the world.

Posted by Eric at 05:49 PM | Comments (3)

Kerry Hits Bush on Veterans Cuts

From the Boston Globe, Kerry is hitting Bush on his plan to cut the veterans budget:

The presumptive Democratic nominee, on the eve of the Memorial Day weekend, yesterday stood before the train from which Dwight D. Eisenhower commanded allied troops in World War II, and castigated the Bush administration for what he called a rush into war in Iraq, the mistreatment of military commanders, and the consideration of a $910 million cut in next year's Veterans Administration budget.

"My friends, I'm not going to listen to Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld and these other people talk about patriotism in America, when the first definition of patriotism is keeping faith with the people who wore the uniform of our country," Kerry told a crowd of current and former members of the armed forces during a sometimes tear-filled town hall meeting at the National Railroad Museum. In the crowd were two of Kerry's former Vietnam crewmates.

Kerry's plan for veterans can be found here.

Posted by Eric at 07:34 AM | Comments (43)

Kerry Hits Bush on Veterans Cuts

From the Boston Globe, Kerry is hitting Bush on his plan to cut the veterans budget:

The presumptive Democratic nominee, on the eve of the Memorial Day weekend, yesterday stood before the train from which Dwight D. Eisenhower commanded allied troops in World War II, and castigated the Bush administration for what he called a rush into war in Iraq, the mistreatment of military commanders, and the consideration of a $910 million cut in next year's Veterans Administration budget.

"My friends, I'm not going to listen to Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld and these other people talk about patriotism in America, when the first definition of patriotism is keeping faith with the people who wore the uniform of our country," Kerry told a crowd of current and former members of the armed forces during a sometimes tear-filled town hall meeting at the National Railroad Museum. In the crowd were two of Kerry's former Vietnam crewmates.

Kerry's plan for veterans can be found here.

Posted by Eric at 07:34 AM | Comments (6)

May 28, 2004

Friday

News
AP. U.S. Faces Growing Deficit, Gas Prices
AP. Kerry Expanding Ads to GOP-Leaning Va.
AP. Report: 1 of Every 75 U.S. Men in Prison
AP. U.S. Allies Also Accused in Prison Abuse
SanFranChr. Schwarzenegger a big hit with voters, polls report: Soaring popularity cuts across party, geographical lines
CBS. Gov't Turf Battle Over Terror?
LAT. Economy Lagging in Key State: Ohio, home to 'ground zero for the election,' is struggling to reap the benefits of the recovery. President Bush's prospects could suffer
UK Indy. Controversy as Attorney General talks of death penalty
UK Indy. Kerry surges ahead in 12 crucial swing states as Bush poll ratings plummet
NYT. For House Democrats, a Whiff of Victory
NYT. In Jordan's Scrapyards, Signs of a Looted Iraq
NYT. Kerry Outlines Foreign Policy, Attacking Bush
WP. Warner Bucks GOP Right On Probe of Prison Abuse
WP. Worry and Anger Over Iraq Situation: Poll, Interviews Find Rising Concern
WP. Bush Touts Plan for Electronic Medicine; Campaign Aimed at 'Wired' Voters
WP. Alternative Remedies Gaining Popularity: Majority in U.S. Try Some Form, Survey Finds
AP. Connecticut governor fights subpoena from impeachment panel
AP. Many college students aren't graduating
CSM. No communion for contrary Catholics: a good idea? A handful of US bishops are prepared to deny the central sacrament to politicians who support abortion rights
CSM. In next round, will disability rights be broadened further? The Supreme Court sends six cases back to lower courts after key decision favoring a man in a wheelchair.
CSM. Military's officer corps: too political? Some detect overt support for President Bush. Others just see more polarization

Commentary
Krugman. To Tell the Truth
Michelangelo Signorile. America Shrugged: On Gay Marriage
Erica Zeitlin. Howard Dean: The Movement
Rob Garver. Cut-and-Paste Over: Sometimes it's not what they put in -- it's what they leave out. Case in point: the Times' coverage of Bush's Army War College speech
Salon. Off to Baghdad: John Negroponte, the new ambassador to Iraq, proved usefully blind to the horrors perpetrated by the Honduran government in the '80s. But after Abu Ghraib, he won't be able to cover up this dirty war
Amy Sullivan. Showdown in the Cafeteria; Catholic Democrats are mad as heck
William D. Hartung. Bush Needs a 12-Step Program
Geov Parrish. Won't you please come to New York? Peace activists plan to assemble a million anti-Bush protesters in New York this summer on the Sunday before the Republican National Convention -- and the city plans to stop them
Robert Parry. Bush Sr.'s Iraq-Iran Secrets
Michael Scherer. Public Information, Private Profit?
NYT. A Real Nuclear Danger
Herbert. A Speech That's No Joke
Transcript. Senator Kerry on National Security
Terry Krepel. What Matters: CNSNews.com and the Media Research Center love to attack David Brock, though they have yet to prove him wrong. Plus: They go after Air America, too
Charles Slaughter. Getting All Veterans to the Voting Booths

Posted by Eric at 11:57 PM | Comments (96)

Friday

News
AP. U.S. Faces Growing Deficit, Gas Prices
AP. Kerry Expanding Ads to GOP-Leaning Va.
AP. Report: 1 of Every 75 U.S. Men in Prison
AP. U.S. Allies Also Accused in Prison Abuse
SanFranChr. Schwarzenegger a big hit with voters, polls report: Soaring popularity cuts across party, geographical lines
CBS. Gov't Turf Battle Over Terror?
LAT. Economy Lagging in Key State: Ohio, home to 'ground zero for the election,' is struggling to reap the benefits of the recovery. President Bush's prospects could suffer
UK Indy. Controversy as Attorney General talks of death penalty
UK Indy. Kerry surges ahead in 12 crucial swing states as Bush poll ratings plummet
NYT. For House Democrats, a Whiff of Victory
NYT. In Jordan's Scrapyards, Signs of a Looted Iraq
NYT. Kerry Outlines Foreign Policy, Attacking Bush
WP. Warner Bucks GOP Right On Probe of Prison Abuse
WP. Worry and Anger Over Iraq Situation: Poll, Interviews Find Rising Concern
WP. Bush Touts Plan for Electronic Medicine; Campaign Aimed at 'Wired' Voters
WP. Alternative Remedies Gaining Popularity: Majority in U.S. Try Some Form, Survey Finds
AP. Connecticut governor fights subpoena from impeachment panel
AP. Many college students aren't graduating
CSM. No communion for contrary Catholics: a good idea? A handful of US bishops are prepared to deny the central sacrament to politicians who support abortion rights
CSM. In next round, will disability rights be broadened further? The Supreme Court sends six cases back to lower courts after key decision favoring a man in a wheelchair.
CSM. Military's officer corps: too political? Some detect overt support for President Bush. Others just see more polarization

Commentary
Krugman. To Tell the Truth
Michelangelo Signorile. America Shrugged: On Gay Marriage
Erica Zeitlin. Howard Dean: The Movement
Rob Garver. Cut-and-Paste Over: Sometimes it's not what they put in -- it's what they leave out. Case in point: the Times' coverage of Bush's Army War College speech
Salon. Off to Baghdad: John Negroponte, the new ambassador to Iraq, proved usefully blind to the horrors perpetrated by the Honduran government in the '80s. But after Abu Ghraib, he won't be able to cover up this dirty war
Amy Sullivan. Showdown in the Cafeteria; Catholic Democrats are mad as heck
William D. Hartung. Bush Needs a 12-Step Program
Geov Parrish. Won't you please come to New York? Peace activists plan to assemble a million anti-Bush protesters in New York this summer on the Sunday before the Republican National Convention -- and the city plans to stop them
Robert Parry. Bush Sr.'s Iraq-Iran Secrets
Michael Scherer. Public Information, Private Profit?
NYT. A Real Nuclear Danger
Herbert. A Speech That's No Joke
Transcript. Senator Kerry on National Security
Terry Krepel. What Matters: CNSNews.com and the Media Research Center love to attack David Brock, though they have yet to prove him wrong. Plus: They go after Air America, too
Charles Slaughter. Getting All Veterans to the Voting Booths

Posted by Eric at 11:57 PM | Comments (0)

Deal Finalized: Weinsteins Buy 'Fahrenheit 9/11' from Disney

The provocative Michael Moore film, which Disney deemed too political (ha), has been aquired by the Weinsteins (Miramax) for US distribution, according to Reuters:

Miramax film studio founders Harvey and Bob Weinstein have personally acquired rights to Michael Moore (news)'s documentary "Fahrenheit 9/11" from Walt Disney Co., after Disney, which owns Miramax, declined to distribute it, Disney said on Friday.

Miramax had funded the film but Disney said it was too politically charged for the family-friendly company.

After more than a week of talks, the Weinsteins have bought rights to the film, estimated to have cost about $6 million, and will arrange for its theatrical and home video distribution.

Posted by Eric at 05:10 PM | Comments (9)

Deal Finalized: Weinsteins Buy 'Fahrenheit 9/11' from Disney

The provocative Michael Moore film, which Disney deemed too political (ha), has been aquired by the Weinsteins (Miramax) for US distribution, according to Reuters:

Miramax film studio founders Harvey and Bob Weinstein have personally acquired rights to Michael Moore (news)'s documentary "Fahrenheit 9/11" from Walt Disney Co., after Disney, which owns Miramax, declined to distribute it, Disney said on Friday.

Miramax had funded the film but Disney said it was too politically charged for the family-friendly company.

After more than a week of talks, the Weinsteins have bought rights to the film, estimated to have cost about $6 million, and will arrange for its theatrical and home video distribution.

Posted by Eric at 05:10 PM | Comments (6)

Liberal Media Spreads al Qaeda-Kerry Myth

As noted in CAP's Progress Report:

Yesterday, CNN Justice Department correspondent Kelli Arena spread the unsubstantiated myth that al Qaeda has a preference in the upcoming U.S. elections. Arena, who is supposed to be an objective journalist, claimed, "there is some speculation that al Qaeda believes it has a better chance of winning in Iraq if John Kerry is in the White House." Arena's comment came on the same day Kerry called for 40,000 more troops in Iraq.
Atrios has some suggestions on ways to respond to CNN:
Atlanta:
404-827-1500

Washington:
202-898-7900

You can communicate your thoughts to Ms. Arena personally at:
kelli.arena@turner.com

Posted by Eric at 04:31 PM | Comments (34)

Liberal Media Spreads al Qaeda-Kerry Myth

As noted in CAP's Progress Report:

Yesterday, CNN Justice Department correspondent Kelli Arena spread the unsubstantiated myth that al Qaeda has a preference in the upcoming U.S. elections. Arena, who is supposed to be an objective journalist, claimed, "there is some speculation that al Qaeda believes it has a better chance of winning in Iraq if John Kerry is in the White House." Arena's comment came on the same day Kerry called for 40,000 more troops in Iraq.
Atrios has some suggestions on ways to respond to CNN:
Atlanta:
404-827-1500

Washington:
202-898-7900

You can communicate your thoughts to Ms. Arena personally at:
kelli.arena@turner.com

Posted by Eric at 04:31 PM | Comments (4)

Kerry Small Lead in Iowa

As linked from Political Wire, a Survey USA poll (pdf) finds John Kerry with a 3 point lead over Bush, 48% to 45%, with 8% undecided. Political Wire also notes that "Kerry paired with Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack (D) loses to Bush-Cheney by three points." However, one should note that the results are within the margin of error.

Posted by Eric at 03:01 PM | Comments (2)

Kerry Small Lead in Iowa

As linked from Political Wire, a Survey USA poll (pdf) finds John Kerry with a 3 point lead over Bush, 48% to 45%, with 8% undecided. Political Wire also notes that "Kerry paired with Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack (D) loses to Bush-Cheney by three points." However, one should note that the results are within the margin of error.

Posted by Eric at 03:01 PM | Comments (1)

Hamster Numbers: Children's Health

From Misleader.org:

During today's first event, the President is expected to praise children's hospitals. However, his budget this year proposes to freeze funding for grants to these hospitals, preventing their federal grants from keeping pace with inflation. He also proposes a $94 million cut to the Community Access Program - effectively eliminating another program that provides grants to children's hospitals in need. And he is trying to slash $158 million (68%) from training grants for specialties that include pediatrics. These efforts are consistent with his past policies: last year, the President proposed cutting $86 million (30%) from grants to children's hospitals. And in 2002, he proposed to cut $35 million (14%) from grants for children's hospitals to train pediatricians.

Posted by Eric at 07:33 AM | Comments (12)

Hamster Numbers: Children's Health

From Misleader.org:

During today's first event, the President is expected to praise children's hospitals. However, his budget this year proposes to freeze funding for grants to these hospitals, preventing their federal grants from keeping pace with inflation. He also proposes a $94 million cut to the Community Access Program - effectively eliminating another program that provides grants to children's hospitals in need. And he is trying to slash $158 million (68%) from training grants for specialties that include pediatrics. These efforts are consistent with his past policies: last year, the President proposed cutting $86 million (30%) from grants to children's hospitals. And in 2002, he proposed to cut $35 million (14%) from grants for children's hospitals to train pediatricians.

Posted by Eric at 07:33 AM | Comments (3)

Study: Prices of Popular Prescription Drugs for Seniors Rose 4.3x Inflation Last Year

Seniors will pay much more for the top 30 brand-name drugs, according to a new study by Families USA. In the wake of the new Bush medicare law ...

Based on the Bush Administration's estimates, approximately 7.4 million seniors - only 1 out of every 6 people enrolled in Medicare - will participate in the new drug discount card program. As a result, 5 out of 6 seniors will bear the full brunt of the fast-rising drug inflation documented in the report.

"The overwhelming majority of seniors will receive no help this or next year from skyrocketing drug prices, and their medicines will be much more unaffordable," said Ron Pollack, Families USA's Executive Director. "For those who get discounts, potential savings will be negated by large increases in base prices."

According to the report, the average wholesale price of 28 of the top 30 brand-name drugs rose by 2 or more times the rate of inflation from January 2003 to January 2004. Twenty-one of those drugs rose in price by 3 or more times the rate of inflation, and almost half (14) rose by more than 5 times inflation.

The full report, in .pdf form, can be found here.

Posted by Eric at 07:28 AM | Comments (28)

Study: Prices of Popular Prescription Drugs for Seniors Rose 4.3x Inflation Last Year

Seniors will pay much more for the top 30 brand-name drugs, according to a new study by Families USA. In the wake of the new Bush medicare law ...

Based on the Bush Administration's estimates, approximately 7.4 million seniors - only 1 out of every 6 people enrolled in Medicare - will participate in the new drug discount card program. As a result, 5 out of 6 seniors will bear the full brunt of the fast-rising drug inflation documented in the report.

"The overwhelming majority of seniors will receive no help this or next year from skyrocketing drug prices, and their medicines will be much more unaffordable," said Ron Pollack, Families USA's Executive Director. "For those who get discounts, potential savings will be negated by large increases in base prices."

According to the report, the average wholesale price of 28 of the top 30 brand-name drugs rose by 2 or more times the rate of inflation from January 2003 to January 2004. Twenty-one of those drugs rose in price by 3 or more times the rate of inflation, and almost half (14) rose by more than 5 times inflation.

The full report, in .pdf form, can be found here.

Posted by Eric at 07:28 AM | Comments (1)

U.S. Iraq Military Deaths Reach 800

From the AP:

As of Thursday, May 27, 800 U.S. service members have died since the beginning of military operations in Iraq (news - web sites) last year, according to the Defense Department. Of those, 585 died as a result of hostile action and 215 died of non-hostile causes ... Since May 1, 2003, when President Bush (news - web sites) declared that major combat operations in Iraq had ended, 662 U.S. soldiers have died — 476 as a result of hostile action and 186 of non-hostile causes, according to the military's numbers.

Posted by Eric at 07:06 AM | Comments (16)

U.S. Iraq Military Deaths Reach 800

From the AP:

As of Thursday, May 27, 800 U.S. service members have died since the beginning of military operations in Iraq (news - web sites) last year, according to the Defense Department. Of those, 585 died as a result of hostile action and 215 died of non-hostile causes ... Since May 1, 2003, when President Bush (news - web sites) declared that major combat operations in Iraq had ended, 662 U.S. soldiers have died — 476 as a result of hostile action and 186 of non-hostile causes, according to the military's numbers.

Posted by Eric at 07:06 AM | Comments (4)

May 27, 2004

Thursday

News
AP. House Race in S.D. Mirrors Larger Struggle
BaltSun. Rights group condemns U.S. actions: Amnesty International says U.S. war on terror hurts international law
CNN. Scientist declines top Iraq post
AP. Army drops some environmental protections
AFP. Pentagon surprised by Bush pledge to destroy Abu Ghraib: report
Bloomberg. Massachusetts Town Halts Gay Marriages for Non-State Residents
LAT. Dellinger of 'Chicago Seven' dies
Bloomberg. Schwarzenegger Is Most Popular Governor Since 1991, Poll Says
AFP. U.S. dismisses report on human-rights abuses
AP. Bush to Discuss Health Care in South
WP. 2006 Cuts In Domestic Spending On Table
Reuters. Kerry Offers Security Policy Respectful of Allies
WP. Gore Calls for Top Officials to Resign: Democrat Assails Bush's War Cabinet
NYT. Kerry Abandons Plan to Delay Accepting Nomination
NYT. Democrats Wonder if Kerry Should Stay on Careful Path
NYT. U.S. Suspends Fighting in Najaf After Deal With Rebel Cleric
LAT. Kerry Faults Bush on Terror Readiness

Commentary
Al Gore. George W. Bush promised us a foreign policy with humility. Instead, he has brought us humiliation in the eyes of the world
Sidney Blumenthal. One more headache for the besieged Bush administration: The FBI is now interrogating the neocon cronies of Ahmed Chalabi
James C. Moore. Not fit to print: How Ahmed Chalabi and the Iraq war lobby used New York Times reporter Judith Miller to make the case for invasion
Molly Ivins. 10 ways we botched Iraq
Arianna Huffington. Oil money and a smart energy policy don't mix; The connections between Bush and Big Oil, by the numbers
SFC. Investigate detainees' deaths
Hillary Frey. Rockin' for the Free World: MoveOn.org joins forces with Lollapalooza to make change in November
Charles P. Pierce. Ahmad Cleans Out: No weapons of mass destruction -- but you'll find deals on Perle's autograph, Wolfowitz's soul, and a slightly dented Moral Authority
Matthew Yglesias and Paul Waldman. The Quiet Candidate; John Kerry is keeping his head down and letting bad news speak for itself.
Robert Kuttner. Bush's health care scam
Richard Cohen. Consistently Disconnected
Marie Cocco. A speech can't set U.S. right on Iraq

Posted by Eric at 11:57 PM | Comments (65)

Thursday

News
AP. House Race in S.D. Mirrors Larger Struggle
BaltSun. Rights group condemns U.S. actions: Amnesty International says U.S. war on terror hurts international law
CNN. Scientist declines top Iraq post
AP. Army drops some environmental protections
AFP. Pentagon surprised by Bush pledge to destroy Abu Ghraib: report
Bloomberg. Massachusetts Town Halts Gay Marriages for Non-State Residents
LAT. Dellinger of 'Chicago Seven' dies
Bloomberg. Schwarzenegger Is Most Popular Governor Since 1991, Poll Says
AFP. U.S. dismisses report on human-rights abuses
AP. Bush to Discuss Health Care in South
WP. 2006 Cuts In Domestic Spending On Table
Reuters. Kerry Offers Security Policy Respectful of Allies
WP. Gore Calls for Top Officials to Resign: Democrat Assails Bush's War Cabinet
NYT. Kerry Abandons Plan to Delay Accepting Nomination
NYT. Democrats Wonder if Kerry Should Stay on Careful Path
NYT. U.S. Suspends Fighting in Najaf After Deal With Rebel Cleric
LAT. Kerry Faults Bush on Terror Readiness

Commentary
Al Gore. George W. Bush promised us a foreign policy with humility. Instead, he has brought us humiliation in the eyes of the world
Sidney Blumenthal. One more headache for the besieged Bush administration: The FBI is now interrogating the neocon cronies of Ahmed Chalabi
James C. Moore. Not fit to print: How Ahmed Chalabi and the Iraq war lobby used New York Times reporter Judith Miller to make the case for invasion
Molly Ivins. 10 ways we botched Iraq
Arianna Huffington. Oil money and a smart energy policy don't mix; The connections between Bush and Big Oil, by the numbers
SFC. Investigate detainees' deaths
Hillary Frey. Rockin' for the Free World: MoveOn.org joins forces with Lollapalooza to make change in November
Charles P. Pierce. Ahmad Cleans Out: No weapons of mass destruction -- but you'll find deals on Perle's autograph, Wolfowitz's soul, and a slightly dented Moral Authority
Matthew Yglesias and Paul Waldman. The Quiet Candidate; John Kerry is keeping his head down and letting bad news speak for itself.
Robert Kuttner. Bush's health care scam
Richard Cohen. Consistently Disconnected
Marie Cocco. A speech can't set U.S. right on Iraq

Posted by Eric at 11:57 PM | Comments (0)

Caring For Our Troops

This is what Bush has said:

"[When I am President, we] will not have our veterans standing in line waiting for benefits that they've been promised." (Federal Document Clearing House Political Transcripts, September 7, 2000)
This is what Bush wants to do:
Veterans Affairs would be cut by $910 million in 2006 from $29.7 billion in 2005 while spending growth at the Education Department would slow.

Posted by Eric at 08:03 PM | Comments (12)

Caring For Our Troops

This is what Bush has said:

"[When I am President, we] will not have our veterans standing in line waiting for benefits that they've been promised." (Federal Document Clearing House Political Transcripts, September 7, 2000)
This is what Bush wants to do:
Veterans Affairs would be cut by $910 million in 2006 from $29.7 billion in 2005 while spending growth at the Education Department would slow.

Posted by Eric at 08:03 PM | Comments (2)

Hannity: "Can we pray for the reelection of George Bush?"

I've got another thing to add to my prayer list:

JOSEPH: Well, we're asking people this Sunday, is the 30th, one month before the handover. We're just asking people to set aside a day of prayer to pray for Iraq, that somehow this handover will...

HANNITY: Can we pray for the reelection of George Bush?

JOSEPH: And then also pray -- pray for the Christians.

HANNITY: Were you a supporter of President Bush? Tell me honestly.

Posted by Eric at 05:55 PM | Comments (5)

Hannity: "Can we pray for the reelection of George Bush?"

I've got another thing to add to my prayer list:

JOSEPH: Well, we're asking people this Sunday, is the 30th, one month before the handover. We're just asking people to set aside a day of prayer to pray for Iraq, that somehow this handover will...

HANNITY: Can we pray for the reelection of George Bush?

JOSEPH: And then also pray -- pray for the Christians.

HANNITY: Were you a supporter of President Bush? Tell me honestly.

Posted by Eric at 05:55 PM | Comments (8)

O'Franken Posts Strong Initial Ratings

People are listening to The O'Franken Factor and the AAR, as notes Chicago Tribune:

Despite ongoing financial woes, Air America Radio appears to have garnered a significant audience during its first month on the air, particularly among the younger listeners sought by advertisers.

An analysis of recently released figures from Arbitron, the radio ratings service, showed that in New York Air America beat Rush Limbaugh's station among 25-to-54-year-olds during the period that Limbaugh and Al Franken, the host of the flagship show "The O'Franken Factor," go head-to-head.

In Chicago, even though the network was available for only 28 days in April, Air America increased the average share of 25-to-54-year-old listeners on WNTD-950 AM from a 0.1 percent share in February to a 2 percent share in April.

However, this caveat:
The April audience estimates, which are the first data indicating whether or not Air America's brand of liberal talk radio can find an audience, come from a third-party analysis of Arbitron data, called "extrapolations."

Insiders cautioned that, while it is standard to use extrapolations as a guide to the performance of a station, they are preliminary and prone to a certain margin of error.

Posted by Eric at 05:06 PM | Comments (13)

O'Franken Posts Strong Initial Ratings

People are listening to The O'Franken Factor and the AAR, as notes Chicago Tribune:

Despite ongoing financial woes, Air America Radio appears to have garnered a significant audience during its first month on the air, particularly among the younger listeners sought by advertisers.

An analysis of recently released figures from Arbitron, the radio ratings service, showed that in New York Air America beat Rush Limbaugh's station among 25-to-54-year-olds during the period that Limbaugh and Al Franken, the host of the flagship show "The O'Franken Factor," go head-to-head.

In Chicago, even though the network was available for only 28 days in April, Air America increased the average share of 25-to-54-year-old listeners on WNTD-950 AM from a 0.1 percent share in February to a 2 percent share in April.

However, this caveat:
The April audience estimates, which are the first data indicating whether or not Air America's brand of liberal talk radio can find an audience, come from a third-party analysis of Arbitron data, called "extrapolations."

Insiders cautioned that, while it is standard to use extrapolations as a guide to the performance of a station, they are preliminary and prone to a certain margin of error.

Posted by Eric at 05:06 PM | Comments (0)

Interesting: NPR Favors Republicans / Elitists

A new study from FAIR finds that the supposedly liberal network is not all that liberal in its guestlist:

FAIR's study looked at every on-air source quoted in June 2003 on NPR's four main news shows: All Things Considered, Morning Edition, Weekend Edition Saturday and Weekend Edition Sunday. Think tank sources and regular commentators were analyzed over a four-month period. Results were compared to those from a 1993 FAIR study of NPR sources ... * PUBLIC VS. ELITE SOURCES: Elite sources-- including government officials, professional experts and corporate representatives--
accounted for 64 percent of all sources. Non-elite sources-- including public interest voices, workers and members of the general public-- made up 31 percent, up from 17 percent in 1993. But more than two-thirds of the non-elite sources were "people on the street," often anonymous sources who tended to be quoted in one-sentence soundbites. Only 7 percent of all sources represented public interest groups, organized citizens groups who articulate a broad range of public viewpoints ...

* REPUBLICANS AMPLIFIED: Comparing partisan sources—including government officials, party officials, campaign workers and consultants—Republicans outnumbered Democrats by more than three to two (61 percent to 38 percent). Even when Democrats controlled the White House and both houses of Congress in FAIR's 1993 study, Republicans outnumbered Democrats 57 to 42 percent.

* THINK TANK SOURCES SKEW RIGHT: Representatives of think tanks to the right of center outnumbered those to the left of center by more than four to one, 62 appearances to 15. Centrist think tanks made 56 appearances.

Posted by Eric at 04:53 PM | Comments (14)

Interesting: NPR Favors Republicans / Elitists

A new study from FAIR finds that the supposedly liberal network is not all that liberal in its guestlist:

FAIR's study looked at every on-air source quoted in June 2003 on NPR's four main news shows: All Things Considered, Morning Edition, Weekend Edition Saturday and Weekend Edition Sunday. Think tank sources and regular commentators were analyzed over a four-month period. Results were compared to those from a 1993 FAIR study of NPR sources ... * PUBLIC VS. ELITE SOURCES: Elite sources-- including government officials, professional experts and corporate representatives--
accounted for 64 percent of all sources. Non-elite sources-- including public interest voices, workers and members of the general public-- made up 31 percent, up from 17 percent in 1993. But more than two-thirds of the non-elite sources were "people on the street," often anonymous sources who tended to be quoted in one-sentence soundbites. Only 7 percent of all sources represented public interest groups, organized citizens groups who articulate a broad range of public viewpoints ...

* REPUBLICANS AMPLIFIED: Comparing partisan sources—including government officials, party officials, campaign workers and consultants—Republicans outnumbered Democrats by more than three to two (61 percent to 38 percent). Even when Democrats controlled the White House and both houses of Congress in FAIR's 1993 study, Republicans outnumbered Democrats 57 to 42 percent.

* THINK TANK SOURCES SKEW RIGHT: Representatives of think tanks to the right of center outnumbered those to the left of center by more than four to one, 62 appearances to 15. Centrist think tanks made 56 appearances.

Posted by Eric at 04:53 PM | Comments (3)

Dean to Start Syndicated Column

According to the Burlington FreePress, Dean will start next week:

"He's just really excited about this," said Laura Gross, communications secretary for Democracy for America, the grass-roots advocacy group Dean started after his bid for the Democratic presidential nomination ended in February.

"This will give Governor Dean a chance to talk about political issues that are important to him," Gross said. "He's glad to have a forum for that, especially in this election season." Dean was traveling in New York on Wednesday and was unavailable for comment.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but an official for the syndicate confirmed the arrangement Wednesday and said Dean's weekly column would be sent to 700 newspapers beginning next week.

Posted by Eric at 01:15 PM | Comments (9)

Dean to Start Syndicated Column

According to the Burlington FreePress, Dean will start next week:

"He's just really excited about this," said Laura Gross, communications secretary for Democracy for America, the grass-roots advocacy group Dean started after his bid for the Democratic presidential nomination ended in February.

"This will give Governor Dean a chance to talk about political issues that are important to him," Gross said. "He's glad to have a forum for that, especially in this election season." Dean was traveling in New York on Wednesday and was unavailable for comment.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but an official for the syndicate confirmed the arrangement Wednesday and said Dean's weekly column would be sent to 700 newspapers beginning next week.

Posted by Eric at 01:15 PM | Comments (2)

Kerry Ahead in Penn

According to the latest Quinnipiac University poll:

Democratic challenger John Kerry has moved into a thin 44 -- 41 percent lead over President George W. Bush among Pennsylvania voters, with 6 percent for independent candidate Ralph Nader, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

This compares to a 45 -- 39 percent lead for President Bush, with 8 percent for Nader in an April 21 poll by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN uh-pe-ack) University.

Bush's job approval has dropped to an all-time low of 41 percent in Pennsylvania, with 55 percent disapproving. Voters say 51 -- 42 percent that going to war in Iraq was the wrong thing to do, reversing a 49 -- 45 percent vote in favor of the war April 21.

Meanwhile, "Arlen Specter has a 49 -- 37 percent lead over U.S. Rep. Joseph Hoeffel, the Democratic challenger."

And for those who'd like a Kerry/McCain ticket, there's this news: a "hypothetical Kerry/McCain pairing holds a 14-point advantage over President Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney, nearly double the 8-point lead Kerry has alone over Bush."

Posted by Eric at 01:09 PM | Comments (5)

Kerry Ahead in Penn

According to the latest Quinnipiac University poll:

Democratic challenger John Kerry has moved into a thin 44 -- 41 percent lead over President George W. Bush among Pennsylvania voters, with 6 percent for independent candidate Ralph Nader, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

This compares to a 45 -- 39 percent lead for President Bush, with 8 percent for Nader in an April 21 poll by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN uh-pe-ack) University.

Bush's job approval has dropped to an all-time low of 41 percent in Pennsylvania, with 55 percent disapproving. Voters say 51 -- 42 percent that going to war in Iraq was the wrong thing to do, reversing a 49 -- 45 percent vote in favor of the war April 21.

Meanwhile, "Arlen Specter has a 49 -- 37 percent lead over U.S. Rep. Joseph Hoeffel, the Democratic challenger."

And for those who'd like a Kerry/McCain ticket, there's this news: a "hypothetical Kerry/McCain pairing holds a 14-point advantage over President Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney, nearly double the 8-point lead Kerry has alone over Bush."

Posted by Eric at 01:09 PM | Comments (1)

Bush: The Flip-Flopping Promise Breaker

President Bush makes a lot of promises ... he just doesn't often keep them. Just a few examples quoted from the Senate Democratic Policy Committee.

Bush Promise: "I think the reauthorization of these important federal initiatives should proceed. And one of the things is funding, of course. And I've asked for $290 million in new funding for these programs for the year 2003. And I've also - and it's to help meet these goals. 25,000 additional new AmeriCorps members, 25,000 more than we have now today all across the country. 100,000 new Senior Corps members." (Federal Document Clearing House Political Transcripts, April 9, 2002)

Promise Broken: "When I heard last week that President Bush and Congress were slashing AmeriCorps by 80 percent, my first reaction was to feel suckered. After his 2002 State of the Union Message, I wrote a column praising the president for promising to expand the program (which he placed under USA Freedom Corps) by 50 percent and attacking critics who made light of Bush's commitment. I actually believed that community service was important to this man, and that he saw it as a patriotic response to 9-11. Then I brought myself up short...what if I was snookered?" (Jonathan Alter, Newsweek, June 30, 2003)

Bush Promise: "Any time we put our troops into harm's way, you must have the best training, the best equipment, the best possible pay." (White House web site, October 9, 2003)

Bush Promise: "Our troops continue to face serious danger, and this government is giving them every means of protecting themselves and every means necessary to gain victory." (White House web site, May 10, 2004)

Promise Broken: "Many soldiers who are there say the Pentagon is failing to protect them with the best technology America has to offer...That has translated into a lack of armor...A breakdown of the casualty figures suggests that many U.S. deaths and wounds in Iraq simply did not need to occur. According to an unofficial study by a defense consultant that is now circulating through the Army, there have been 142 casualties by land mines or improvised explosive devices, while 48 others died in rocket-propelled-grenade attacks. Almost all those soldiers were killed while in unprotected vehicles, which means that perhaps one in four of those killed in combat in Iraq might be alive if they had had stronger armor around them, the study suggested." (Newsweek, May 3, 2004)

Promise Broken: "The administration announced that on Oct. 1 it wants to roll back recent modest increases in monthly imminent-danger pay (from $225 to $150) and family-separation allowance (from $250 to $100) for troops getting shot at in combat zones." (Army Times, June 30, 2003)

Posted by Eric at 12:04 AM | Comments (28)

Bush: The Flip-Flopping Promise Breaker

President Bush makes a lot of promises ... he just doesn't often keep them. Just a few examples quoted from the Senate Democratic Policy Committee.

Bush Promise: "I think the reauthorization of these important federal initiatives should proceed. And one of the things is funding, of course. And I've asked for $290 million in new funding for these programs for the year 2003. And I've also - and it's to help meet these goals. 25,000 additional new AmeriCorps members, 25,000 more than we have now today all across the country. 100,000 new Senior Corps members." (Federal Document Clearing House Political Transcripts, April 9, 2002)

Promise Broken: "When I heard last week that President Bush and Congress were slashing AmeriCorps by 80 percent, my first reaction was to feel suckered. After his 2002 State of the Union Message, I wrote a column praising the president for promising to expand the program (which he placed under USA Freedom Corps) by 50 percent and attacking critics who made light of Bush's commitment. I actually believed that community service was important to this man, and that he saw it as a patriotic response to 9-11. Then I brought myself up short...what if I was snookered?" (Jonathan Alter, Newsweek, June 30, 2003)

Bush Promise: "Any time we put our troops into harm's way, you must have the best training, the best equipment, the best possible pay." (White House web site, October 9, 2003)

Bush Promise: "Our troops continue to face serious danger, and this government is giving them every means of protecting themselves and every means necessary to gain victory." (White House web site, May 10, 2004)

Promise Broken: "Many soldiers who are there say the Pentagon is failing to protect them with the best technology America has to offer...That has translated into a lack of armor...A breakdown of the casualty figures suggests that many U.S. deaths and wounds in Iraq simply did not need to occur. According to an unofficial study by a defense consultant that is now circulating through the Army, there have been 142 casualties by land mines or improvised explosive devices, while 48 others died in rocket-propelled-grenade attacks. Almost all those soldiers were killed while in unprotected vehicles, which means that perhaps one in four of those killed in combat in Iraq might be alive if they had had stronger armor around them, the study suggested." (Newsweek, May 3, 2004)

Promise Broken: "The administration announced that on Oct. 1 it wants to roll back recent modest increases in monthly imminent-danger pay (from $225 to $150) and family-separation allowance (from $250 to $100) for troops getting shot at in combat zones." (Army Times, June 30, 2003)

Posted by Eric at 12:04 AM | Comments (8)

May 26, 2004

Wed Stories

News
WP. U.S. Warns Of Al Qaeda Threat This Summer; Agents in Country Said To Be Planning Attack
NYT. Abuse of Captives More Widespread, Says Army Survey
Miami Herald. Hispanics to carry clout at polls, group predicts
AP. Poll finds Arizonans split on Bush's job performance
AP. Bush edges Kerry in 'regular guy' poll
AP. Court Backs Oregon's Assisted Suicide Law
ABC. Anger Rising: Americans Increasingly Frustrated With Bush Iraq Policy
AP. 2nd death-penalty trial set for Muhammad
NYT. The Law: Who Would Try Civilians of U.S.? No One in Iraq
NYT. California Supreme Court Considers Gay Marriage Licenses
USAT. White House abuse memo criticized
USAT. Poll: Gas prices hurting summer vacation plans
USAT. AARP: Drug prices soaring
CNN. Database predicts July 21 for Kerry VP announcement
WP. U.N. Closes In on Choice To Lead Iraq
WP. General Is Said To Have Urged Use of Dogs
WP. Kerry Weighs Delaying Nomination

Commentary
E.J. Dionne, Jr. Avoiding another Florida fiasco: Lessons of 2000 -- and ways we can repair the system
DeWayne Wickham. Cosby isn't alone in asking blacks to own up to problems
Thomas Schaller. Democrats Grab Latino Votes: Could it be the difference in November?
P.J. Crowley. Staying - and Failing - the Course
Mary Lynn F. Jones. Un-American Activities: Republicans pouncing on Nancy Pelosi for "endangering" our troops should look in the mirror.
Matthew Yglesias. He Told You So; Howard Dean was written off last December when he said that Saddam Hussein's capture "has not made America safer." Ahem …
Daniel Forbes. What's the Big Idea? Liberalism's leading lights convene in New York to talk message

Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (2)

Wed Stories

News
WP. U.S. Warns Of Al Qaeda Threat This Summer; Agents in Country Said To Be Planning Attack
NYT. Abuse of Captives More Widespread, Says Army Survey
Miami Herald. Hispanics to carry clout at polls, group predicts
AP. Poll finds Arizonans split on Bush's job performance
AP. Bush edges Kerry in 'regular guy' poll
AP. Court Backs Oregon's Assisted Suicide Law
ABC. Anger Rising: Americans Increasingly Frustrated With Bush Iraq Policy
AP. 2nd death-penalty trial set for Muhammad
NYT. The Law: Who Would Try Civilians of U.S.? No One in Iraq
NYT. California Supreme Court Considers Gay Marriage Licenses
USAT. White House abuse memo criticized
USAT. Poll: Gas prices hurting summer vacation plans
USAT. AARP: Drug prices soaring
CNN. Database predicts July 21 for Kerry VP announcement
WP. U.N. Closes In on Choice To Lead Iraq
WP. General Is Said To Have Urged Use of Dogs
WP. Kerry Weighs Delaying Nomination

Commentary
E.J. Dionne, Jr. Avoiding another Florida fiasco: Lessons of 2000 -- and ways we can repair the system
DeWayne Wickham. Cosby isn't alone in asking blacks to own up to problems
Thomas Schaller. Democrats Grab Latino Votes: Could it be the difference in November?
P.J. Crowley. Staying - and Failing - the Course
Mary Lynn F. Jones. Un-American Activities: Republicans pouncing on Nancy Pelosi for "endangering" our troops should look in the mirror.
Matthew Yglesias. He Told You So; Howard Dean was written off last December when he said that Saddam Hussein's capture "has not made America safer." Ahem …
Daniel Forbes. What's the Big Idea? Liberalism's leading lights convene in New York to talk message

Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (0)

DCCC Launches "DTripTV.com"

The website, http://www.dtriptv.com/, will aim to "entertain, inspire, and mobilize concerned Americans" with issuetainment stuff, such as this week's feature, 'Republican Survivor,' starring George W., Dick Cheney, John Ashcroft, Tom DeLay, Katherine Harris and Ann Coulter.

Posted by Eric at 08:58 PM | Comments (6)

DCCC Launches "DTripTV.com"

The website, http://www.dtriptv.com/, will aim to "entertain, inspire, and mobilize concerned Americans" with issuetainment stuff, such as this week's feature, 'Republican Survivor,' starring George W., Dick Cheney, John Ashcroft, Tom DeLay, Katherine Harris and Ann Coulter.

Posted by Eric at 08:58 PM | Comments (1)

3 More Marines Die in Iraq

AP:

Three U.S. Marines were killed in action Wednesday west of the Iraqi capital, the U.S. military said.

A statement from the command said the deaths occurred in Anbar province "while conducting security and stability operations." No further details were released due to security, the statement added.

Anbar province extends from the western suburbs of Baghdad and extends to the borders with Syria, Jordan and Saudi Arabia. It includes such restive insurgency centers as Fallujah, Ramadi and Qaim.

Posted by Eric at 08:37 PM | Comments (1)

3 More Marines Die in Iraq

AP:

Three U.S. Marines were killed in action Wednesday west of the Iraqi capital, the U.S. military said.

A statement from the command said the deaths occurred in Anbar province "while conducting security and stability operations." No further details were released due to security, the statement added.

Anbar province extends from the western suburbs of Baghdad and extends to the borders with Syria, Jordan and Saudi Arabia. It includes such restive insurgency centers as Fallujah, Ramadi and Qaim.

Posted by Eric at 08:37 PM | Comments (0)

The-Hamster.com Cited in David Brock's Book

Thanks to David Brock for using the-hamster.com as a reference in his new book, The Republican Noise Machine : Right-Wing Media and How It Corrupts Democracy. I've gone through several chapters of it, and the book does not disappoint.

The reference was a poll FoxNews.com had on its website. This was the poll question and answers, which I cut and paste onto the website in October of 2002 (all the way back then, yes):

Babs Babbling? Barbra Streisand has urged Dems to 'go on the offensive' against the Iraq war. What do you think? Options: "She should shut up -- what does she know?" or "She's exercising her freedom of speech."
Fair and balanced polling indeed. Oh, and yeah, 85% said she should shut up.

EDIT: Brock also cited something from the old "The Hamster" site in which I noted that Bill O'Reilly lied during a call-in session on CSPAN at the 2003 Book Expo in Los Angeles. During the live chat, a caller claimed that O'Reilly made a comparison of the Koran to Mein Kampf. O'Reilly responded:

No, you can’t finish. Because once you lie, you’re out of the box. That’s the No Spin Zone. Get it? You can’t say on national television, even if it is C-SPAN, ‘You compared the Koran to Mein Kampf.’ That’s a lie, all right? So you’re out of the box.
However, on The O'Reilly Factor for July 10, 2002, O'Reilly had this exchange with Dr. Robert Kirkpatrick (ENGLISH PROFESSOR, UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA-CHAPEL HILL):
O'REILLY: I wouldn't read the book. And I'll tell you why I wouldn't have read "Mein Kampf" either. If I were going to UNC in 1941, and you, professor, said, Read "Mein Kampf," I would have said, Hey, professor, with all due respect, shove it. I ain't reading it.
For more on how the Right-Wing media lies, pick up: The Republican Noise Machine : Right-Wing Media and How It Corrupts Democracy.

Posted by Eric at 05:05 PM | Comments (24)

The-Hamster.com Cited in David Brock's Book

Thanks to David Brock for using the-hamster.com as a reference in his new book, The Republican Noise Machine : Right-Wing Media and How It Corrupts Democracy. I've gone through several chapters of it, and the book does not disappoint.

The reference was a poll FoxNews.com had on its website. This was the poll question and answers, which I cut and paste onto the website in October of 2002 (all the way back then, yes):

Babs Babbling? Barbra Streisand has urged Dems to 'go on the offensive' against the Iraq war. What do you think? Options: "She should shut up -- what does she know?" or "She's exercising her freedom of speech."
Fair and balanced polling indeed. Oh, and yeah, 85% said she should shut up.

EDIT: Brock also cited something from the old "The Hamster" site in which I noted that Bill O'Reilly lied during a call-in session on CSPAN at the 2003 Book Expo in Los Angeles. During the live chat, a caller claimed that O'Reilly made a comparison of the Koran to Mein Kampf. O'Reilly responded:

No, you can’t finish. Because once you lie, you’re out of the box. That’s the No Spin Zone. Get it? You can’t say on national television, even if it is C-SPAN, ‘You compared the Koran to Mein Kampf.’ That’s a lie, all right? So you’re out of the box.
However, on The O'Reilly Factor for July 10, 2002, O'Reilly had this exchange with Dr. Robert Kirkpatrick (ENGLISH PROFESSOR, UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA-CHAPEL HILL):
O'REILLY: I wouldn't read the book. And I'll tell you why I wouldn't have read "Mein Kampf" either. If I were going to UNC in 1941, and you, professor, said, Read "Mein Kampf," I would have said, Hey, professor, with all due respect, shove it. I ain't reading it.
For more on how the Right-Wing media lies, pick up: The Republican Noise Machine : Right-Wing Media and How It Corrupts Democracy.

Posted by Eric at 05:05 PM | Comments (5)

Your Bill for the War: $4,000

According to an estimate from Doug Henwood, as reported by Sean Gonsalves, that's your share:

Henwood pegs the military costs in Iraq to date at about $143 billion, with the tab rising $4 billion to $5 billion a month.

Reconstruction has cost about $20 billion so far, with another $50 billion to $100 billion still needed, Henwood reports.

"If the occupation goes on for three years, which is what the military pundits say is likely, the total bill could come to $362 billion. Add to that an estimated 0.5 percent knocked off GDP growth because of high oil prices, and that's another $50 billion," he says.

Add it all up, and the bill comes to nearly $4,000 per household, not including interest. "I wonder how people would react if they got a bill from Washington for that amount," he said.

Posted by Eric at 02:02 PM | Comments (33)

Your Bill for the War: $4,000

According to an estimate from Doug Henwood, as reported by Sean Gonsalves, that's your share:

Henwood pegs the military costs in Iraq to date at about $143 billion, with the tab rising $4 billion to $5 billion a month.

Reconstruction has cost about $20 billion so far, with another $50 billion to $100 billion still needed, Henwood reports.

"If the occupation goes on for three years, which is what the military pundits say is likely, the total bill could come to $362 billion. Add to that an estimated 0.5 percent knocked off GDP growth because of high oil prices, and that's another $50 billion," he says.

Add it all up, and the bill comes to nearly $4,000 per household, not including interest. "I wonder how people would react if they got a bill from Washington for that amount," he said.

Posted by Eric at 02:02 PM | Comments (9)

Kerry Double Digit Lead in California

According to the 'Field Poll' in the San Fran Chron. Interestingly enough, Nader doesn't get much support in the state:

President Bush lags behind Democrat John Kerry by 12 points in California, and is now down by more than 2-1 among the state's independent voters -- the critical bloc which may decide the election, a new Field Poll shows.

In a head-to-head matchup, Kerry batters Bush in California 51 percent to 39 percent, with independent Ralph Nader getting 4 percent of the vote and 6 percent undecided, the poll shows. Without Nader in the mix, Kerry's lead over Bush grows -- 55 percent to 40 percent -- with 5 percent undecided.

Posted by Eric at 01:56 PM | Comments (1)

Kerry Double Digit Lead in California

According to the 'Field Poll' in the San Fran Chron. Interestingly enough, Nader doesn't get much support in the state:

President Bush lags behind Democrat John Kerry by 12 points in California, and is now down by more than 2-1 among the state's independent voters -- the critical bloc which may decide the election, a new Field Poll shows.

In a head-to-head matchup, Kerry batters Bush in California 51 percent to 39 percent, with independent Ralph Nader getting 4 percent of the vote and 6 percent undecided, the poll shows. Without Nader in the mix, Kerry's lead over Bush grows -- 55 percent to 40 percent -- with 5 percent undecided.

Posted by Eric at 01:56 PM | Comments (0)

Questions, Smestions

Yeah, it'd be nice to know the answer to these questions:

  • How long will our troops be in Iraq?
  • Who will be in charge of the new Iraqi government after June 30?
  • What kind of control will the new Iraqi government have over U.S. military forces?
  • How much will our continuing commitment in Iraq cost American taxpayers?
  • On CNN, Madeleine Albright had similar concerns about the ambiguity and lack of answers from Bush.
    First of all, there's still no guarantee that the Iraqi people will accept whatever interim government -- the sovereignty that we are going to turn over something to somebody -- but we're not clear yet what is what.

    The other question is whether the security will really be adequate because [these are] the same points that were made before: the Americans will train the Iraqis. How long will that take?

    Will there be help, in terms of the reconstruction of Iraq? Where will it come from? Who will do it? We have to let contracts [go] to somebody other than American companies.

    Will there, in fact, be international assistance, generally, on providing a multi-national force? And will these elections really take place?

    Posted by Eric at 03:49 AM | Comments (22)

    Questions, Smestions

    Yeah, it'd be nice to know the answer to these questions:

  • How long will our troops be in Iraq?
  • Who will be in charge of the new Iraqi government after June 30?
  • What kind of control will the new Iraqi government have over U.S. military forces?
  • How much will our continuing commitment in Iraq cost American taxpayers?
  • On CNN, Madeleine Albright had similar concerns about the ambiguity and lack of answers from Bush.
    First of all, there's still no guarantee that the Iraqi people will accept whatever interim government -- the sovereignty that we are going to turn over something to somebody -- but we're not clear yet what is what.

    The other question is whether the security will really be adequate because [these are] the same points that were made before: the Americans will train the Iraqis. How long will that take?

    Will there be help, in terms of the reconstruction of Iraq? Where will it come from? Who will do it? We have to let contracts [go] to somebody other than American companies.

    Will there, in fact, be international assistance, generally, on providing a multi-national force? And will these elections really take place?

    Posted by Eric at 03:49 AM | Comments (6)

    Herseth Continues Lead in SD

    According to a Zogby poll, as reported in the Rapid City Journal, Stephanie Herseth maintains her lead:

    Herseth leads Diedrich 52 percent to 41 percent, according to a poll of 503 likely voters conducted May 19 and 20 by Zogby International of Utica, N.Y., for South Dakota media outlets, including the Rapid City Journal. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percent.

    Seven percent remain undecided ... Herseth spokesman Russ Levsen said the poll shows that Diedrich's substantial early gains have been harder to come by in recent weeks. Diedrich rose from about 30 percent support in February, when he was largely unknown, to 41 percent in this poll. Levsen said it is much tougher for candidates to close a gap from 40 percent to get the more than 50 percent needed for victory.

    "I think this race has settled in. There are very few undecideds. People are where they are, and Stephanie is enjoying solid support," Levsen said. "I think it also drives home that after some negative attacks from Larry Diedrich, South Dakotans appreciate her positive approach on the issues."

    Also in South Dakota, Tom Daschle has taken his lead and doubled it.

    Posted by Eric at 03:10 AM | Comments (43)

    Herseth Continues Lead in SD

    According to a Zogby poll, as reported in the Rapid City Journal, Stephanie Herseth maintains her lead:

    Herseth leads Diedrich 52 percent to 41 percent, according to a poll of 503 likely voters conducted May 19 and 20 by Zogby International of Utica, N.Y., for South Dakota media outlets, including the Rapid City Journal. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percent.

    Seven percent remain undecided ... Herseth spokesman Russ Levsen said the poll shows that Diedrich's substantial early gains have been harder to come by in recent weeks. Diedrich rose from about 30 percent support in February, when he was largely unknown, to 41 percent in this poll. Levsen said it is much tougher for candidates to close a gap from 40 percent to get the more than 50 percent needed for victory.

    "I think this race has settled in. There are very few undecideds. People are where they are, and Stephanie is enjoying solid support," Levsen said. "I think it also drives home that after some negative attacks from Larry Diedrich, South Dakotans appreciate her positive approach on the issues."

    Also in South Dakota, Tom Daschle has taken his lead and doubled it.

    Posted by Eric at 03:10 AM | Comments (7)

    Lying Liar: Ben Shapiro

    Ben Shapiro: lying liar. Link via ConWebWatch, The Daily Bruin of UCLA points out numerous problems with Ben Shapiro's new book, "Brainwashed: How Universities Indoctrinate America's Youth."

    So how does Shapiro react to the numerous mistakes and problems?

    Shapiro rescheduled Monday an in-person meeting that was supposed to take place that morning and asked to be interviewed by phone instead. Shapiro canceled the phone interview after being presented with the errors through e-mail and would only comment in a statement by e-mail.

    "I stand behind the facts in my book, and behind the major point of my book: The overwhelming majority of professors are leftists, and their leftism enters the classroom," he wrote.

    After canceling his interview, he did not return calls and messages left to his home and cell phone but responded in a later e-mail that he would not be able to talk for "the next several weeks."

    He wrote that he is busy with the publicity campaign for his book, which in an interview last week he said would launch today.

    Posted by Eric at 01:54 AM | Comments (226)

    Lying Liar: Ben Shapiro

    Ben Shapiro: lying liar. Link via ConWebWatch, The Daily Bruin of UCLA points out numerous problems with Ben Shapiro's new book, "Brainwashed: How Universities Indoctrinate America's Youth."

    So how does Shapiro react to the numerous mistakes and problems?

    Shapiro rescheduled Monday an in-person meeting that was supposed to take place that morning and asked to be interviewed by phone instead. Shapiro canceled the phone interview after being presented with the errors through e-mail and would only comment in a statement by e-mail.

    "I stand behind the facts in my book, and behind the major point of my book: The overwhelming majority of professors are leftists, and their leftism enters the classroom," he wrote.

    After canceling his interview, he did not return calls and messages left to his home and cell phone but responded in a later e-mail that he would not be able to talk for "the next several weeks."

    He wrote that he is busy with the publicity campaign for his book, which in an interview last week he said would launch today.

    Posted by Eric at 01:54 AM | Comments (11)

    Hamster Numbers: Murder and the Death Penalty

    Quoted from the Western Prison Project:

  • Number of murders and non-negligent manslaughters in 1999: 15,530
  • Number of persons sentenced to death in 1999: 282
  • Number of executions, 1999: 98
  • Number of people removed in 1999 from death row by dismissal of indictment, reversal of judgment, commutation, re-sentencing, order of new trial or death: 122
  • Ratio of death sentences to murders, 1999: 1 to 55
  • Ratio of executions to murders, 1999: 1 to 158
  • Posted by Eric at 01:36 AM | Comments (29)

    Hamster Numbers: Murder and the Death Penalty

    Quoted from the Western Prison Project:

  • Number of murders and non-negligent manslaughters in 1999: 15,530
  • Number of persons sentenced to death in 1999: 282
  • Number of executions, 1999: 98
  • Number of people removed in 1999 from death row by dismissal of indictment, reversal of judgment, commutation, re-sentencing, order of new trial or death: 122
  • Ratio of death sentences to murders, 1999: 1 to 55
  • Ratio of executions to murders, 1999: 1 to 158
  • Posted by Eric at 01:36 AM | Comments (3)

    Late Night TV Guests of Interest

    Letterman
    Fr 5/28: Bob Woodward
    Mo 5/31: Chris Rock

    Leno
    Mo 6/7: Tim Russert

    Conan
    Th 5/27: Sen. John McCain

    Daily Show
    We 5/26: Sen. John McCain (R)
    Th 5/27: Bill Kristol (R)

    Mo 5/31: Sen. John McCain (R)
    Tu 6/1: David Cross
    We 6/2: Thomas Friedman
    Th 6/3: Mario Cuomo

    Coutesy of Sue Trowbridge.

    Posted by Eric at 01:15 AM | Comments (19)

    Late Night TV Guests of Interest

    Letterman
    Fr 5/28: Bob Woodward
    Mo 5/31: Chris Rock

    Leno
    Mo 6/7: Tim Russert

    Conan
    Th 5/27: Sen. John McCain

    Daily Show
    We 5/26: Sen. John McCain (R)
    Th 5/27: Bill Kristol (R)

    Mo 5/31: Sen. John McCain (R)
    Tu 6/1: David Cross
    We 6/2: Thomas Friedman
    Th 6/3: Mario Cuomo

    Coutesy of Sue Trowbridge.

    Posted by Eric at 01:15 AM | Comments (2)

    Iraq War Taking Down Australian Politician

    George W, Tony Blair and Spain's Popular Party aren't the only ones feeling the wrath of voters as a result of the poor situation in Iraq: "A backlash against the US-led Iraq war is damaging Australian Prime Minister John Howard's re-election chances in a ballot expected within months." From Reuters:

    Howard, a close US ally who sent 2,000 military personnel to the US-led invasion last March, said his government had been damaged by the negative publicity out of Iraq such as photographs of US troops abusing Iraqi prisoners.

    But he said his conservative government's foreign policy would not be influenced by a swing in opinion polls after an ACNielsen poll showed 63 percent of Australians now believed the war in Iraq was unjustified, up from 51 percent in September last year ... Despite a positive response to the government's big-spending budget two weeks ago, an ACNielsen poll published on yesterday found support for Howard's Liberal-National Party coalition had slipped to 39 percent from 42 percent a month ago.

    Posted by Eric at 12:55 AM | Comments (7)

    Iraq War Taking Down Australian Politician

    George W, Tony Blair and Spain's Popular Party aren't the only ones feeling the wrath of voters as a result of the poor situation in Iraq: "A backlash against the US-led Iraq war is damaging Australian Prime Minister John Howard's re-election chances in a ballot expected within months." From Reuters:

    Howard, a close US ally who sent 2,000 military personnel to the US-led invasion last March, said his government had been damaged by the negative publicity out of Iraq such as photographs of US troops abusing Iraqi prisoners.

    But he said his conservative government's foreign policy would not be influenced by a swing in opinion polls after an ACNielsen poll showed 63 percent of Australians now believed the war in Iraq was unjustified, up from 51 percent in September last year ... Despite a positive response to the government's big-spending budget two weeks ago, an ACNielsen poll published on yesterday found support for Howard's Liberal-National Party coalition had slipped to 39 percent from 42 percent a month ago.

    Posted by Eric at 12:55 AM | Comments (0)

    Over 63,000 in 24 Hours Sign Diebold Petition

    In 24 hours, over 63,000 people have signed Gov. Howard Dean's petition for fair elections by having a paper trail for every electronic vote in the Diebold system.

    "We must act now to ensure that our voting systems produce accurate and verifiable results. Some states are planning to use machines that will not allow voters to verify their choices. This means that any flaws in the machine or software will never be caught -- and no recount will be possible."

    Join the call at Democracy for America.

    Posted by Eric at 12:43 AM | Comments (26)

    Over 63,000 in 24 Hours Sign Diebold Petition

    In 24 hours, over 63,000 people have signed Gov. Howard Dean's petition for fair elections by having a paper trail for every electronic vote in the Diebold system.

    "We must act now to ensure that our voting systems produce accurate and verifiable results. Some states are planning to use machines that will not allow voters to verify their choices. This means that any flaws in the machine or software will never be caught -- and no recount will be possible."

    Join the call at Democracy for America.

    Posted by Eric at 12:43 AM | Comments (3)

    May 25, 2004

    Tuesday

    News
    AP. Bush Says U.S. Will Persevere in Iraq
    LAT. Amid the Kerry Storm, a Calm Named Marvin
    NYT. No. 2 Army General to Move In as Top U.S. Commander in Iraq
    NYT. Campaign Ads Are Under Fire for Inaccuracy
    NYT. Organization Tied to G.O.P. Gets Warning on Donations
    WP. Bush Poll Numbers On Iraq at New Low
    WP. GOP Creating Own '527' Groups: Unregulated Funds Can Be Raised
    USAT. Higher and higher — again: Gasoline prices set record
    Houston Chron. Bush says troops staying put, but plan dissatisfies Iraqi leaders
    USAT. Pentagon considers replacing its top general in Iraq
    AP. Oregon lawyer speaks out about his ordeal
    Chic ST. Killer spared by Ryan back on Death Row
    Reuters. Stocks Set to Open Lower as Oil Weigh
    Reuters. Iraq Council Wants Control of Oil, a Say on Troops
    AP. Kerry Promotes Energy Plan in Ore., Wash.
    AP. U.S. Considering Plan to Protect Whales
    BGlobe. Kerry justifies idea of nomination delay

    Commentary
    Salon. Bush's Speech: Marching off the cliff
    Juan Cole. Portrait of a Rebellion: Shiite insurgency in Iraq bedevils U.S.
    Amanda Griscom. Muckraker: Fowl play - Factory farms get off easy on air pollution
    Cynthia Tucker. Some Americans in full retreat from America's core values
    The Nation. Orders to Torture: The evidence emerging from Abu Ghraib reveals high crimes and misdemeanors in the precise sense of the Constitution's impeachment clause
    Elizabeth Alexander. Abu Ghraib in America
    Dan Frosch. Uncle Sam Wants You Anyway
    DesMReg. Let people see the photos: Unpleasant as they may be, the prison-abuse photos belong as part of the public record
    Marie Cocco. Pols pander with gas-price palaver
    Robert Scheer. Chalabi's Long, Costly Charade
    Jesse Jackson. No pass for U.S. brass in Iraq
    Thomas Oliphant. Edwards's edge on economy
    BGlobe. Bush's reality gap
    Newsday. The president continues to hope for the best in Iraq without planning for the worst, imagining a democracy that may take decades to build
    Minn StarTrib. Bush's speech/Simply more of the same
    SFC. Bush grasps for an Iraq plan
    Krugman. Delusions of Triumph

    Posted by Eric at 11:39 PM | Comments (3)

    Tuesday

    News
    AP. Bush Says U.S. Will Persevere in Iraq
    LAT. Amid the Kerry Storm, a Calm Named Marvin
    NYT. No. 2 Army General to Move In as Top U.S. Commander in Iraq
    NYT. Campaign Ads Are Under Fire for Inaccuracy
    NYT. Organization Tied to G.O.P. Gets Warning on Donations
    WP. Bush Poll Numbers On Iraq at New Low
    WP. GOP Creating Own '527' Groups: Unregulated Funds Can Be Raised
    USAT. Higher and higher — again: Gasoline prices set record
    Houston Chron. Bush says troops staying put, but plan dissatisfies Iraqi leaders
    USAT. Pentagon considers replacing its top general in Iraq
    AP. Oregon lawyer speaks out about his ordeal
    Chic ST. Killer spared by Ryan back on Death Row
    Reuters. Stocks Set to Open Lower as Oil Weigh
    Reuters. Iraq Council Wants Control of Oil, a Say on Troops
    AP. Kerry Promotes Energy Plan in Ore., Wash.
    AP. U.S. Considering Plan to Protect Whales
    BGlobe. Kerry justifies idea of nomination delay

    Commentary
    Salon. Bush's Speech: Marching off the cliff
    Juan Cole. Portrait of a Rebellion: Shiite insurgency in Iraq bedevils U.S.
    Amanda Griscom. Muckraker: Fowl play - Factory farms get off easy on air pollution
    Cynthia Tucker. Some Americans in full retreat from America's core values
    The Nation. Orders to Torture: The evidence emerging from Abu Ghraib reveals high crimes and misdemeanors in the precise sense of the Constitution's impeachment clause
    Elizabeth Alexander. Abu Ghraib in America
    Dan Frosch. Uncle Sam Wants You Anyway
    DesMReg. Let people see the photos: Unpleasant as they may be, the prison-abuse photos belong as part of the public record
    Marie Cocco. Pols pander with gas-price palaver
    Robert Scheer. Chalabi's Long, Costly Charade
    Jesse Jackson. No pass for U.S. brass in Iraq
    Thomas Oliphant. Edwards's edge on economy
    BGlobe. Bush's reality gap
    Newsday. The president continues to hope for the best in Iraq without planning for the worst, imagining a democracy that may take decades to build
    Minn StarTrib. Bush's speech/Simply more of the same
    SFC. Bush grasps for an Iraq plan
    Krugman. Delusions of Triumph

    Posted by Eric at 11:39 PM | Comments (4)

    Savage on Asians and Dogs

    Hahahaha ... Ah, yes. The man the 'liberal' NBC News gave a news talk show. Media Matters:

    SAVAGE: [apparently reading from an article in USA Today] "Researchers have surprising news about what breeds of dogs came first and which dogs are more closely related." What do I give a rat's behind about which dog is related? Why is this study done? All I know is we treat dogs very well here, and the great originators of the dog eat them. How come they don't put that in their story about 'em, the Asians still chew 'em up? In China they're in cages waiting to be cooked. Yeah, I know, you're not supposed to say that. All the quiet, sacred soy eaters over there.

    Posted by Eric at 09:36 PM | Comments (54)

    Savage on Asians and Dogs

    Hahahaha ... Ah, yes. The man the 'liberal' NBC News gave a news talk show. Media Matters:

    SAVAGE: [apparently reading from an article in USA Today] "Researchers have surprising news about what breeds of dogs came first and which dogs are more closely related." What do I give a rat's behind about which dog is related? Why is this study done? All I know is we treat dogs very well here, and the great originators of the dog eat them. How come they don't put that in their story about 'em, the Asians still chew 'em up? In China they're in cages waiting to be cooked. Yeah, I know, you're not supposed to say that. All the quiet, sacred soy eaters over there.

    Posted by Eric at 09:36 PM | Comments (8)

    Fox Leads Cable Nets in Speech Coverage

    Ratings posted at Cablenewser:

    8:00 to 8:37pm:
    FOX -- 3,541,000
    CNN -- 1,499,000
    MSNBC -- 934,000

    8 to 9pm:
    FOX -- 3,341,000
    CNN -- 1,399,000
    MSNBC -- 942,000

    8 to 11pm:
    FOX -- 2,292,000
    CNN -- 1,323,000
    MSNBC -- 649,000

    Posted by Eric at 07:49 PM | Comments (9)

    Fox Leads Cable Nets in Speech Coverage

    Ratings posted at Cablenewser:

    8:00 to 8:37pm:
    FOX -- 3,541,000
    CNN -- 1,499,000
    MSNBC -- 934,000

    8 to 9pm:
    FOX -- 3,341,000
    CNN -- 1,399,000
    MSNBC -- 942,000

    8 to 11pm:
    FOX -- 2,292,000
    CNN -- 1,323,000
    MSNBC -- 649,000

    Posted by Eric at 07:49 PM | Comments (3)

    Air America Radio Numbers

    As said on Al Franken's radio show yesterday:

    Arbitron. Spring Phase 1 numbers:

  • 25-54 year olds in New York.
    AAR - 3.4 share from 10am-3pm.
    WABC - 3.2 share (Rush Limbaugh)

  • #1 provider of streaming audio on the internet in April = 6.5 million distinct streams. Average listening time = 51 minutes.

  • KPOJ (AAR's Portland affiliate) - nearly quintupled their cumulative ratings.

    Posted by Eric at 05:48 PM | Comments (6)

    Air America Radio Numbers

    As said on Al Franken's radio show yesterday:

    Arbitron. Spring Phase 1 numbers:

  • 25-54 year olds in New York.
    AAR - 3.4 share from 10am-3pm.
    WABC - 3.2 share (Rush Limbaugh)

  • #1 provider of streaming audio on the internet in April = 6.5 million distinct streams. Average listening time = 51 minutes.

  • KPOJ (AAR's Portland affiliate) - nearly quintupled their cumulative ratings.

    Posted by Eric at 05:48 PM | Comments (2)

    Lies and the Lying Leaders Who Believe Them

    Was Washington duped by Iran? And if so, how serious? The Guardian:

    According to a US intelligence official, the CIA has hard evidence that Mr Chalabi and his intelligence chief, Aras Karim Habib, passed US secrets to Tehran, and that Mr Habib has been a paid Iranian agent for several years, involved in passing intelligence in both directions.

    The CIA has asked the FBI to investigate Mr Chalabi's contacts in the Pentagon to discover how the INC acquired sensitive information that ended up in Iranian hands.

    The implications are far-reaching. Mr Chalabi and Mr Habib were the channels for much of the intelligence on Iraqi weapons on which Washington built its case for war.

    "It's pretty clear that Iranians had us for breakfast, lunch and dinner," said an intelligence source in Washington yesterday. "Iranian intelligence has been manipulating the US for several years through Chalabi."

    Posted by Eric at 05:36 PM | Comments (6)

    Lies and the Lying Leaders Who Believe Them

    Was Washington duped by Iran? And if so, how serious? The Guardian:

    According to a US intelligence official, the CIA has hard evidence that Mr Chalabi and his intelligence chief, Aras Karim Habib, passed US secrets to Tehran, and that Mr Habib has been a paid Iranian agent for several years, involved in passing intelligence in both directions.

    The CIA has asked the FBI to investigate Mr Chalabi's contacts in the Pentagon to discover how the INC acquired sensitive information that ended up in Iranian hands.

    The implications are far-reaching. Mr Chalabi and Mr Habib were the channels for much of the intelligence on Iraqi weapons on which Washington built its case for war.

    "It's pretty clear that Iranians had us for breakfast, lunch and dinner," said an intelligence source in Washington yesterday. "Iranian intelligence has been manipulating the US for several years through Chalabi."

    Posted by Eric at 05:36 PM | Comments (3)

    Media Matters

    Conservative shill Howard Kurtz of the Washington Post screws up a Pew research poll, and adds his own little editorial bent.

    Meanwhile, on Fox News, Democrats were largely invisible during the channel's speech coverage:

    FOX News Channel's coverage was anchored by FOX News managing editor and chief Washington correspondent Brit Hume, who moved from Bush to a panel of pundits that included pro-Bush, pro-war conservative syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer; pro-Bush, pro-war conservative Weekly Standard executive editor Fred Barnes; and Washington Post staff writer Ceci Connolly -- FOX News contributors all. National Public Radio senior correspondent and FOX News Channel political contributor Juan Williams, who often appears on Hume's daily 6 p.m. newscast and has been critical of Bush's polices in Iraq, did not appear on the primetime panel.

    Following the panel of two conservative pundits and one news reporter, Hume introduced Representative Peter King (R-NY) as "one who supports the President on this issue." King described the Bush address as "uplifting," "poetry," and said Bush spoke "almost lyrically."

    After a brief exchange with FOX senior White House correspondent Jim Angle, Hume returned to his stacked panel for closing remarks. Krauthammer was given the last word: "He had to answer a question, 'does he have a plan?' The answer is yes, he has a plan, with details and dates. He succeeded."

    Posted by Eric at 05:17 PM | Comments (30)

    Media Matters

    Conservative shill Howard Kurtz of the Washington Post screws up a Pew research poll, and adds his own little editorial bent.

    Meanwhile, on Fox News, Democrats were largely invisible during the channel's speech coverage:

    FOX News Channel's coverage was anchored by FOX News managing editor and chief Washington correspondent Brit Hume, who moved from Bush to a panel of pundits that included pro-Bush, pro-war conservative syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer; pro-Bush, pro-war conservative Weekly Standard executive editor Fred Barnes; and Washington Post staff writer Ceci Connolly -- FOX News contributors all. National Public Radio senior correspondent and FOX News Channel political contributor Juan Williams, who often appears on Hume's daily 6 p.m. newscast and has been critical of Bush's polices in Iraq, did not appear on the primetime panel.

    Following the panel of two conservative pundits and one news reporter, Hume introduced Representative Peter King (R-NY) as "one who supports the President on this issue." King described the Bush address as "uplifting," "poetry," and said Bush spoke "almost lyrically."

    After a brief exchange with FOX senior White House correspondent Jim Angle, Hume returned to his stacked panel for closing remarks. Krauthammer was given the last word: "He had to answer a question, 'does he have a plan?' The answer is yes, he has a plan, with details and dates. He succeeded."

    Posted by Eric at 05:17 PM | Comments (6)

    Quotable Quote

    "To think that we are going to, quote, stay the course — this course is headed over Niagara Falls." General Zinni

    Posted by Eric at 05:10 PM | Comments (26)

    Quotable Quote

    "To think that we are going to, quote, stay the course — this course is headed over Niagara Falls." General Zinni

    Posted by Eric at 05:10 PM | Comments (8)

    Get a Free MoveOn.org Sticker

    Courtesy of MoveOn.org, get a free sticker and show your anti-Bush pride. Link via Skippy.

    Posted by Eric at 05:09 PM | Comments (26)

    Get a Free MoveOn.org Sticker

    Courtesy of MoveOn.org, get a free sticker and show your anti-Bush pride. Link via Skippy.

    Posted by Eric at 05:09 PM | Comments (1)

    The Mispronouncing of Abu Ghraib

    Aww, isn't he so cute?

    Two rehearsals for his prime-time speech were not enough to keep U.S. President George W. Bush from mangling the name of the Abu Ghraib prison that brought shame to the U.S. mission in Iraq.

    During the half-hour televised address, Bush mispronounced Abu Ghraib each of the three times he mentioned it while announcing U.S. plans to tear down the infamous jail and replace it with a new facility ... But the Republican president, long known for verbal and grammatical lapses, stumbled on the first try, calling it "abugah-rayp". The second version came out "abu-garon", the third attempt sounded like "abu-garah".

    He can't pronounce 'Abu Ghraib.' That means he's just like us, not know-it-all John Kerry.

    Posted by Eric at 05:00 PM | Comments (13)

    The Mispronouncing of Abu Ghraib

    Aww, isn't he so cute?

    Two rehearsals for his prime-time speech were not enough to keep U.S. President George W. Bush from mangling the name of the Abu Ghraib prison that brought shame to the U.S. mission in Iraq.

    During the half-hour televised address, Bush mispronounced Abu Ghraib each of the three times he mentioned it while announcing U.S. plans to tear down the infamous jail and replace it with a new facility ... But the Republican president, long known for verbal and grammatical lapses, stumbled on the first try, calling it "abugah-rayp". The second version came out "abu-garon", the third attempt sounded like "abu-garah".

    He can't pronounce 'Abu Ghraib.' That means he's just like us, not know-it-all John Kerry.

    Posted by Eric at 05:00 PM | Comments (10)

    GW's Cuban Support Fading

    Critical to his bid to 'win' Florida again, Bush's Cuban support is eroding due to much talk but little action, reports Newsweek. Indeed, like the rest of the country, Cuban Americans apparently are becoming more and more disillusioned with Bush's leadership:

    Bush's support among Cuban-Americans in south Florida—about 80 percent of whom backed him in 2000—shows signs of eroding. A March Florida International University poll, for instance, showed that only 56 percent of the state's Cuban-Americans planned to vote for Bush, with 25 percent undecided. While the vast majority will almost certainly back Bush in November, even a shift of 5 percent could tip the balance if Florida is a close race.

    Cuban-American grievances range from the administration's decision last year to repatriate 12 immigrants intercepted at sea to its failure to support dissidents on the island more vigorously. A few weeks ago President Bush sought to staunch the bleeding by announcing a raft of anti-Castro policies including additional funding for dissidents—a package he touted on Cuban Independence Day last Thursday. But some of those policies ignited another firestorm: Cuban-Americans who regularly visit relatives on the island and send them much-needed money now face new travel and remittance restrictions. On Independence Day, hundreds crowded into the conference room of a Miami hotel to denounce the measures. "This is dividing families," said Luis Miguel Hernandez, who fears he won't be able to visit his terminally ill mother-in-law. "I'm totally disappointed" with Bush, whom he voted for in 2000 but likely won't back this year. A Bush campaign spokeswoman says, "No one has a stronger record of fighting the Castro dictatorship than the president." One palliative for Bush: those most affected by the new policies are often recently arrived and not yet eligible to vote.

    In Florida, Bush and Kerry are basically tied: "In Florida, Bush and Kerry are tied. Bush had the backing of 47 percent, Kerry of 46 percent and Nader at 3 percent, a poll by the American Research Group found."

    On a similar note, Kos has a pertinent post on the Hispanic vote.

    Posted by Eric at 04:56 PM | Comments (10)

    GW's Cuban Support Fading

    Critical to his bid to 'win' Florida again, Bush's Cuban support is eroding due to much talk but little action, reports Newsweek. Indeed, like the rest of the country, Cuban Americans apparently are becoming more and more disillusioned with Bush's leadership:

    Bush's support among Cuban-Americans in south Florida—about 80 percent of whom backed him in 2000—shows signs of eroding. A March Florida International University poll, for instance, showed that only 56 percent of the state's Cuban-Americans planned to vote for Bush, with 25 percent undecided. While the vast majority will almost certainly back Bush in November, even a shift of 5 percent could tip the balance if Florida is a close race.

    Cuban-American grievances range from the administration's decision last year to repatriate 12 immigrants intercepted at sea to its failure to support dissidents on the island more vigorously. A few weeks ago President Bush sought to staunch the bleeding by announcing a raft of anti-Castro policies including additional funding for dissidents—a package he touted on Cuban Independence Day last Thursday. But some of those policies ignited another firestorm: Cuban-Americans who regularly visit relatives on the island and send them much-needed money now face new travel and remittance restrictions. On Independence Day, hundreds crowded into the conference room of a Miami hotel to denounce the measures. "This is dividing families," said Luis Miguel Hernandez, who fears he won't be able to visit his terminally ill mother-in-law. "I'm totally disappointed" with Bush, whom he voted for in 2000 but likely won't back this year. A Bush campaign spokeswoman says, "No one has a stronger record of fighting the Castro dictatorship than the president." One palliative for Bush: those most affected by the new policies are often recently arrived and not yet eligible to vote.

    In Florida, Bush and Kerry are basically tied: "In Florida, Bush and Kerry are tied. Bush had the backing of 47 percent, Kerry of 46 percent and Nader at 3 percent, a poll by the American Research Group found."

    On a similar note, Kos has a pertinent post on the Hispanic vote.

    Posted by Eric at 04:56 PM | Comments (2)

    Cronkite to MTV News?

    It's possible, as the newsman who's even older than Kurt Loder may get a featured role during MTV's election coverage, reports Newsday:

    Forget the fact that Walter Cronkite has never before appeared on MTV; more than likely, no 87-year-old has ever before appeared on MTV. And while his role as sort of a journalistic Gandalf or on-camera sage will be limited to five or six minutes, this still marks a major departure (and adventure) for MTV News.

    How "major?" Consider this: Both Cronkite and MTV News boss Dave Sirulnick now say they're open to the idea of future assignments, including the possibility of an on-air role during the conventions and election night. Cronkite hasn't had a significant election year TV role since the first time Ronald Reagan was elected president, so....

    "That'd be interesting certainly.... How much I participate in the remaining election year is, I think, just kind of up for grabs," says Cronkite. "They [MTV] know I'm interested in doing pieces for them that come along, but they have some excellent young reporters who will be doing the basic coverage of the campaign. If they call upon me to be the senior citizen, I'll be the senior citizen."

    Recently, Cronkite has been writing several op-ed columns for King Features.

    Posted by Eric at 04:44 PM | Comments (13)

    Cronkite to MTV News?

    It's possible, as the newsman who's even older than Kurt Loder may get a featured role during MTV's election coverage, reports Newsday:

    Forget the fact that Walter Cronkite has never before appeared on MTV; more than likely, no 87-year-old has ever before appeared on MTV. And while his role as sort of a journalistic Gandalf or on-camera sage will be limited to five or six minutes, this still marks a major departure (and adventure) for MTV News.

    How "major?" Consider this: Both Cronkite and MTV News boss Dave Sirulnick now say they're open to the idea of future assignments, including the possibility of an on-air role during the conventions and election night. Cronkite hasn't had a significant election year TV role since the first time Ronald Reagan was elected president, so....

    "That'd be interesting certainly.... How much I participate in the remaining election year is, I think, just kind of up for grabs," says Cronkite. "They [MTV] know I'm interested in doing pieces for them that come along, but they have some excellent young reporters who will be doing the basic coverage of the campaign. If they call upon me to be the senior citizen, I'll be the senior citizen."

    Recently, Cronkite has been writing several op-ed columns for King Features.

    Posted by Eric at 04:44 PM | Comments (3)

    DeLay the Hypocrite

    As noted in the Chicago Sun Times:

    News Item (2004): House Majority Leader Tom DeLay condemns House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi for calling President Bush "incompetent" in time of war, saying, "Her words are putting American lives at risk."

    News Item (1999): House Majority Whip Tom DeLay questions the competence of President Clinton during Kosovo war, saying he committed American troops "unwisely" into a "Balkan quagmire."

    Posted by Eric at 08:45 AM | Comments (19)

    DeLay the Hypocrite

    As noted in the Chicago Sun Times:

    News Item (2004): House Majority Leader Tom DeLay condemns House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi for calling President Bush "incompetent" in time of war, saying, "Her words are putting American lives at risk."

    News Item (1999): House Majority Whip Tom DeLay questions the competence of President Clinton during Kosovo war, saying he committed American troops "unwisely" into a "Balkan quagmire."

    Posted by Eric at 08:45 AM | Comments (6)

    Bush Addresses the Nation

    At least on the cable channels. The White House official transcript.

    The Washington Post writes:

    But Bush did not provide the midcourse correction that even some Republicans had called for in the face of increasingly macabre violence in recent weeks -- from the assassination of the president of Iraq's Governing Council and controversy over dozens killed by U.S. warplanes at a purported wedding party to the grisly beheading of an American civilian.

    Nor did Bush try to answer some of the looming questions that have triggered growing skepticism and anxiety at home and abroad about the final U.S. costs, the final length of stay for U.S. troops, or what the terms will be for a final U.S. exit from Iraq. After promising "concrete steps," the White House basically repackaged stalled U.S. policy as a five-step plan.

    The larger point of Bush's speech, according to the Post, was not necessarily about outlining a new bold plan, but reiterating that the "current plan is good enough to win." The NY Times in a similar fashion:
    Otherwise, Mr. Bush stuck to the basic approach he has settled on over the past several months, betting that his steady-on strategy would ultimately be judged resolute rather than inflexible or unrealistic. He again tied what is happening in Iraq to the broader war on terror, and he warned that the attacks in Iraq would not end with the planned handover of sovereignty in five weeks, but he was optimistic about the final outcome.
    The op-ed board writes that Bush failed to "come up with a realistic way to internationalize the military operation and to get Iraq's political groups beyond their current game of jockeying for power and into a real process of drafting a workable constitution."

    The Pitts Post-Gazette notes that "with few details, Bush rhetoric may fall short."

    Posted by Eric at 12:45 AM | Comments (28)

    Bush Addresses the Nation

    At least on the cable channels. The White House official transcript.

    The Washington Post writes:

    But Bush did not provide the midcourse correction that even some Republicans had called for in the face of increasingly macabre violence in recent weeks -- from the assassination of the president of Iraq's Governing Council and controversy over dozens killed by U.S. warplanes at a purported wedding party to the grisly beheading of an American civilian.

    Nor did Bush try to answer some of the looming questions that have triggered growing skepticism and anxiety at home and abroad about the final U.S. costs, the final length of stay for U.S. troops, or what the terms will be for a final U.S. exit from Iraq. After promising "concrete steps," the White House basically repackaged stalled U.S. policy as a five-step plan.

    The larger point of Bush's speech, according to the Post, was not necessarily about outlining a new bold plan, but reiterating that the "current plan is good enough to win." The NY Times in a similar fashion:
    Otherwise, Mr. Bush stuck to the basic approach he has settled on over the past several months, betting that his steady-on strategy would ultimately be judged resolute rather than inflexible or unrealistic. He again tied what is happening in Iraq to the broader war on terror, and he warned that the attacks in Iraq would not end with the planned handover of sovereignty in five weeks, but he was optimistic about the final outcome.
    The op-ed board writes that Bush failed to "come up with a realistic way to internationalize the military operation and to get Iraq's political groups beyond their current game of jockeying for power and into a real process of drafting a workable constitution."

    The Pitts Post-Gazette notes that "with few details, Bush rhetoric may fall short."

    Posted by Eric at 12:45 AM | Comments (13)

    'Fahrenheit 9/11' Slowly Dealing

    Disney and the Weinstein Bros at Miramax are slowly reaching a deal to distribute Michael Moore's award-winning film, reports Reuters:

    Miramax chiefs Harvey and Bob Weinstein are close to buying "Fahrenheit 9/11," the anti-Bush documentary that won the top prize at Cannes, from the Walt Disney Co., so that they can strike their own distribution deal, a person close to the matter said on Monday.

    Disney Chief Executive Michael Eisner said he declined to distribute the movie because it was too political. But he agreed to selling the roughly $6 million film to the Weinsteins, the heads of Disney's Miramax unit, which originally backed it, spokeswoman Zenia Mucha said by e-mail.

    TIME recently had a 'first look' at the Moore film. And, of course, the Michael Moore site has a preview of the film.

    Posted by Eric at 12:15 AM | Comments (10)

    'Fahrenheit 9/11' Slowly Dealing

    Disney and the Weinstein Bros at Miramax are slowly reaching a deal to distribute Michael Moore's award-winning film, reports Reuters:

    Miramax chiefs Harvey and Bob Weinstein are close to buying "Fahrenheit 9/11," the anti-Bush documentary that won the top prize at Cannes, from the Walt Disney Co., so that they can strike their own distribution deal, a person close to the matter said on Monday.

    Disney Chief Executive Michael Eisner said he declined to distribute the movie because it was too political. But he agreed to selling the roughly $6 million film to the Weinsteins, the heads of Disney's Miramax unit, which originally backed it, spokeswoman Zenia Mucha said by e-mail.

    TIME recently had a 'first look' at the Moore film. And, of course, the Michael Moore site has a preview of the film.

    Posted by Eric at 12:15 AM | Comments (9)

    Hamster Numbers: College Money

    Quoted from the Drum Major Institute

    Number of working-class American parents who do not, or cannot, save for their children's college education: 4 in 10

    Ratio of the amount of a four-year public university education the maximum Pell Grant could pay for in 1976 to 2004: 2:1

    Cost of annual tuition at Yale University, President George W. Bush's alma mater and university attended by his daughter Barbara: $37,000

    Average annual income for a full-time American worker: $32,500

    Number of associate's degrees awarded to American college students every year: 600,000

    Number of U.S. information technology (IT), back office, customer service and sales jobs expected to move "offshore" by 2005: 600,000

    Posted by Eric at 12:01 AM | Comments (9)

    Hamster Numbers: College Money

    Quoted from the Drum Major Institute

    Number of working-class American parents who do not, or cannot, save for their children's college education: 4 in 10

    Ratio of the amount of a four-year public university education the maximum Pell Grant could pay for in 1976 to 2004: 2:1

    Cost of annual tuition at Yale University, President George W. Bush's alma mater and university attended by his daughter Barbara: $37,000

    Average annual income for a full-time American worker: $32,500

    Number of associate's degrees awarded to American college students every year: 600,000

    Number of U.S. information technology (IT), back office, customer service and sales jobs expected to move "offshore" by 2005: 600,000

    Posted by Eric at 12:01 AM | Comments (3)

    May 24, 2004

    Monday Stories

    News
    AP. Bush to outline plans for Iraq changeover tonight
    WP. Telephoto Finish: The Bush Twins Graduate From College, and Private Life
    WP. China Says It Is Not Reassured By Taiwan's Plan
    SFC. Governor converts celebrity into cash; Schwarzenegger's fund-raisers prove a windfall for GOP
    LAT. Iraq Takes Toll on Market
    LAT. Democrats Mostly Positive About a Later Nomination
    LAT. As Smog Thickens, So Does the Debate
    LAT. Bush Faces a Defining Month on World Stage
    LAT. Army Widens Abuse Probe
    AP. Video Shows Iraq Wedding Celebration
    AP. Mayor: NYC still the nation's 'safest big city'
    Grand Rapids Press. Prison abusers were 'stupid,' retired intelligence officer says
    Reuters. Supreme Court: Inmate Can Challenge Execution Procedure
    BGlobe. Heinz Kerry has an ecology agenda
    CSM. Under 17 not admitted without R-card
    CSM. Romney rides volatile issue onto US stage
    Newsweek. The Rise and Fall of Chalabi: Bush's Mr. Wrong
    CNN. Chalabi blames Tenet for feud with U.S.
    CNN. Gas prices rise 14 cents in 14 days
    NYT. Hastert, the Reticent Speaker, Suddenly Has Plenty to Say
    NYT. After 2000 Chaos, Voters in Florida Are Wary
    NYT. British Civilians Killed in Baghdad Blast
    NYT. Allies Draft U.N. Resolution Pledging Sovereignty for Iraq
    Appleton PC. Feingold kicks off run for Senate; Democrat faces a field of four Republicans
    AP. Thune raises more money than Daschle over last six weeks
    Houston Chron. DeLay foe aware win would be long shot

    Commentary
    Bill Moyers. An Eye On Power
    CAP. The Impact of Offshoring on the U.S. Economy: Policy Perspectives
    Michael Tomasky. Unconventional: Why Bruce Springsteen is better at convention-related mischief-making than John Kerry.
    Sheryl McCarthy. U.S. adventure in Iraq amounts to big con job
    Michael Mandelbaum. Iraq progress may not help Bush
    ChicST. Chalabi's downfall shows U.S. missteps in Iraq war
    Intervention Mag. John Kerry's Organizer of Veterans
    Argus Leader. Herseth is the choice
    Anthony Lewis. Rumsfeld's Long List of Failures
    Test. Test
    William Marvel. Where Is The National Shame?
    NYT. The Greening of John McCain
    USAT. Most back affordable housing next door; Findings challenge widely held beliefs
    Eleanor Clift. Panic on the Hill: Republicans are reassessing Bush’s leadership skills—and confronting the idea that he could lose the November election
    Bob Herbert. Did Somebody Say War?

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (0)

    Monday Stories

    News
    AP. Bush to outline plans for Iraq changeover tonight
    WP. Telephoto Finish: The Bush Twins Graduate From College, and Private Life
    WP. China Says It Is Not Reassured By Taiwan's Plan
    SFC. Governor converts celebrity into cash; Schwarzenegger's fund-raisers prove a windfall for GOP
    LAT. Iraq Takes Toll on Market
    LAT. Democrats Mostly Positive About a Later Nomination
    LAT. As Smog Thickens, So Does the Debate
    LAT. Bush Faces a Defining Month on World Stage
    LAT. Army Widens Abuse Probe
    AP. Video Shows Iraq Wedding Celebration
    AP. Mayor: NYC still the nation's 'safest big city'
    Grand Rapids Press. Prison abusers were 'stupid,' retired intelligence officer says
    Reuters. Supreme Court: Inmate Can Challenge Execution Procedure
    BGlobe. Heinz Kerry has an ecology agenda
    CSM. Under 17 not admitted without R-card
    CSM. Romney rides volatile issue onto US stage
    Newsweek. The Rise and Fall of Chalabi: Bush's Mr. Wrong
    CNN. Chalabi blames Tenet for feud with U.S.
    CNN. Gas prices rise 14 cents in 14 days
    NYT. Hastert, the Reticent Speaker, Suddenly Has Plenty to Say
    NYT. After 2000 Chaos, Voters in Florida Are Wary
    NYT. British Civilians Killed in Baghdad Blast
    NYT. Allies Draft U.N. Resolution Pledging Sovereignty for Iraq
    Appleton PC. Feingold kicks off run for Senate; Democrat faces a field of four Republicans
    AP. Thune raises more money than Daschle over last six weeks
    Houston Chron. DeLay foe aware win would be long shot

    Commentary
    Bill Moyers. An Eye On Power
    CAP. The Impact of Offshoring on the U.S. Economy: Policy Perspectives
    Michael Tomasky. Unconventional: Why Bruce Springsteen is better at convention-related mischief-making than John Kerry.
    Sheryl McCarthy. U.S. adventure in Iraq amounts to big con job
    Michael Mandelbaum. Iraq progress may not help Bush
    ChicST. Chalabi's downfall shows U.S. missteps in Iraq war
    Intervention Mag. John Kerry's Organizer of Veterans
    Argus Leader. Herseth is the choice
    Anthony Lewis. Rumsfeld's Long List of Failures
    Test. Test
    William Marvel. Where Is The National Shame?
    NYT. The Greening of John McCain
    USAT. Most back affordable housing next door; Findings challenge widely held beliefs
    Eleanor Clift. Panic on the Hill: Republicans are reassessing Bush’s leadership skills—and confronting the idea that he could lose the November election
    Bob Herbert. Did Somebody Say War?

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (0)

    Interior Department Threatens Western Lands

    In a move that shouldn't surprise even the casual observer of the Bush administration, the Interior Department is moving to allow gas and oil development in 33 million acres of Montana and Wyoming's Powder River Basin. Environmental Defense with more:

    The proposed new development calls for more than 100,000 new gas and oil wells (of which 88,000 are coal-bed methane, or natural gas) for one of the largest energy developments on federal lands in the Lower 48. This new development will entail building more than 23,000 miles of roads and thousands of miles of new pipelines and powerlines.

    The prairie landscape and rolling hills of the Powder River Basin are already pockmarked with thousands of coal-bed extraction sites crisscrossed with access roads and pipelines, which connect giant diesel drilling rigs, gas compressor stations, generators and other equipment often as large as locomotives. Extracting natural gas from a coal bed beneath the ground involves pumping massive amounts of water to the surface (millions of barrels of water a month - by some estimates it could take up to 1,000 years for aquifers to recharge).

    Besides decimating the beauty of the landscape and wasting huge amounts of water, the development threatens such species as pronghorn antelope and mule deer, whose migration routes are disrupted, and sage grouse, whose critical habitat is damaged or destroyed by the noisy machinery and traffic. Where once only the wind rippled the prairie grasses, now the roar of engines often dominates.

    Environmental Defense has also released a fact sheet (pdf) if you want to learn more.

    Posted by Eric at 11:21 PM | Comments (6)

    Interior Department Threatens Western Lands

    In a move that shouldn't surprise even the casual observer of the Bush administration, the Interior Department is moving to allow gas and oil development in 33 million acres of Montana and Wyoming's Powder River Basin. Environmental Defense with more:

    The proposed new development calls for more than 100,000 new gas and oil wells (of which 88,000 are coal-bed methane, or natural gas) for one of the largest energy developments on federal lands in the Lower 48. This new development will entail building more than 23,000 miles of roads and thousands of miles of new pipelines and powerlines.

    The prairie landscape and rolling hills of the Powder River Basin are already pockmarked with thousands of coal-bed extraction sites crisscrossed with access roads and pipelines, which connect giant diesel drilling rigs, gas compressor stations, generators and other equipment often as large as locomotives. Extracting natural gas from a coal bed beneath the ground involves pumping massive amounts of water to the surface (millions of barrels of water a month - by some estimates it could take up to 1,000 years for aquifers to recharge).

    Besides decimating the beauty of the landscape and wasting huge amounts of water, the development threatens such species as pronghorn antelope and mule deer, whose migration routes are disrupted, and sage grouse, whose critical habitat is damaged or destroyed by the noisy machinery and traffic. Where once only the wind rippled the prairie grasses, now the roar of engines often dominates.

    Environmental Defense has also released a fact sheet (pdf) if you want to learn more.

    Posted by Eric at 11:21 PM | Comments (0)

    Hamster Numbers: Single Moms Losing Ground Under Bush

    From the Economic Policy Insititute and MovingIdeas.org, we find that:

  • Over the 2000-2002 period, as the low-wage labor market weakened, the annual work hours of single moms fell by 2.1% per year
  • Though their incomes fell only slightly—less, in fact, than the income of the median family, which fell 1.2% per year—these vulnerable families already have difficulty making ends meet given their low income levels.
  • Posted by Eric at 10:26 PM | Comments (11)

    Hamster Numbers: Single Moms Losing Ground Under Bush

    From the Economic Policy Insititute and MovingIdeas.org, we find that:

  • Over the 2000-2002 period, as the low-wage labor market weakened, the annual work hours of single moms fell by 2.1% per year
  • Though their incomes fell only slightly—less, in fact, than the income of the median family, which fell 1.2% per year—these vulnerable families already have difficulty making ends meet given their low income levels.
  • Posted by Eric at 10:26 PM | Comments (1)

    Worst Poll Numbers Ever

    CBS: "Worst poll numbers ever" for Bush.

    Just 41% approve of the overall job Bush is doing, versus 52 disapproving. Low, low marks elsewhere:

    Sixty-one percent of Americans now disapprove of the way Mr. Bush is handling the situation in Iraq, while just 34 percent approve.

    As concern about the situation in Iraq grows, 65 percent now say the country is on the wrong track — matching the highest number ever recorded in CBS News Polls, which began asking this question in the mid-1980's. Only 30 percent currently say things in this country are headed in the right direction. One year ago, in April 2003, 56 percent of Americans said the country was headed in the right direction.

    The last time the percentage that said the country was on the wrong track was as high as it is now was back in November 1994. Then, Republicans swept into control of both houses of Congress for the first time in decades.

    Majorities disapprove of the way Mr. Bush is handling foreign policy and the economy. Terrorism remains the only positive area for the president — a majority of 51 percent approve of the way he is handling the campaign against terrorism. But that number matches his lowest rating ever on terrorism.

    Posted by Eric at 08:00 PM | Comments (12)

    Worst Poll Numbers Ever

    CBS: "Worst poll numbers ever" for Bush.

    Just 41% approve of the overall job Bush is doing, versus 52 disapproving. Low, low marks elsewhere:

    Sixty-one percent of Americans now disapprove of the way Mr. Bush is handling the situation in Iraq, while just 34 percent approve.

    As concern about the situation in Iraq grows, 65 percent now say the country is on the wrong track — matching the highest number ever recorded in CBS News Polls, which began asking this question in the mid-1980's. Only 30 percent currently say things in this country are headed in the right direction. One year ago, in April 2003, 56 percent of Americans said the country was headed in the right direction.

    The last time the percentage that said the country was on the wrong track was as high as it is now was back in November 1994. Then, Republicans swept into control of both houses of Congress for the first time in decades.

    Majorities disapprove of the way Mr. Bush is handling foreign policy and the economy. Terrorism remains the only positive area for the president — a majority of 51 percent approve of the way he is handling the campaign against terrorism. But that number matches his lowest rating ever on terrorism.

    Posted by Eric at 08:00 PM | Comments (8)

    Zogby: Kerry Leading in Battleground States

    Daily Kos has an especially nice screenshot of a graph from the WSJ/Zogby interactive flash site. Take a look, and as Kos notes, just from the polls, 320-218 Kerry victory.

    Posted by Eric at 06:43 PM | Comments (2)

    Zogby: Kerry Leading in Battleground States

    Daily Kos has an especially nice screenshot of a graph from the WSJ/Zogby interactive flash site. Take a look, and as Kos notes, just from the polls, 320-218 Kerry victory.

    Posted by Eric at 06:43 PM | Comments (0)

    Bennett Funnier Than Franken

    Claims Bill Bennett:

    Ex-gambler William J. Bennett - former Cabinet official to Republican Presidents, author of "The Book of Virtues" and confessed loser of $8 million in Las Vegas and Atlantic City - has a new gig: hosting a syndicated morning drive-time radio show. Many folks "think I'm this big scold who is going to wiggle my finger in people's face, but that is not who I am," Bennett tells R&R magazine. "I'd like to think I'm naturally funny. In fact, I know I'm funnier than Al Franken and I don't need a scriptwriter." When I reached Franken at Air America, the liberal radio network, and read him Bennett's boast, the comedian ad-libbed: "Then let's have a funny-off. I'll give him odds and bet $8 million."

    Posted by Eric at 04:42 PM | Comments (32)

    Bennett Funnier Than Franken

    Claims Bill Bennett:

    Ex-gambler William J. Bennett - former Cabinet official to Republican Presidents, author of "The Book of Virtues" and confessed loser of $8 million in Las Vegas and Atlantic City - has a new gig: hosting a syndicated morning drive-time radio show. Many folks "think I'm this big scold who is going to wiggle my finger in people's face, but that is not who I am," Bennett tells R&R magazine. "I'd like to think I'm naturally funny. In fact, I know I'm funnier than Al Franken and I don't need a scriptwriter." When I reached Franken at Air America, the liberal radio network, and read him Bennett's boast, the comedian ad-libbed: "Then let's have a funny-off. I'll give him odds and bet $8 million."

    Posted by Eric at 04:42 PM | Comments (2)

    Carl Bernstein: Hold Bush Accountable

    The issue about Bush is "failure, or inability, to lead competently and honestly" and like Nixon, "this president decided the Constitution could be bent on his watch." Who will stand up to Bush? Bernstein suggests the GOP must hold the president unaccountable, though this is unlikely:

    To curtail any hint of dissension in the ranks, Bush scheduled a "pep rally" with congressional Republicans — speaking 35 minutes, after which, characteristically, he took no questions and lawmakers dutifully circled the wagons.

    What did George W. Bush know and when did he know it? Another wartime president, Harry Truman, observed that the buck stops at the president's desk, not the Pentagon.

    But among Republicans today, there seems to be scant interest in asking tough questions — or honoring the example of courageous leaders of Congress who, not long ago, stepped forward, setting principle before party, to hold accountable presidents who put their country in peril.

    Posted by Eric at 03:54 PM | Comments (4)

    Carl Bernstein: Hold Bush Accountable

    The issue about Bush is "failure, or inability, to lead competently and honestly" and like Nixon, "this president decided the Constitution could be bent on his watch." Who will stand up to Bush? Bernstein suggests the GOP must hold the president unaccountable, though this is unlikely:

    To curtail any hint of dissension in the ranks, Bush scheduled a "pep rally" with congressional Republicans — speaking 35 minutes, after which, characteristically, he took no questions and lawmakers dutifully circled the wagons.

    What did George W. Bush know and when did he know it? Another wartime president, Harry Truman, observed that the buck stops at the president's desk, not the Pentagon.

    But among Republicans today, there seems to be scant interest in asking tough questions — or honoring the example of courageous leaders of Congress who, not long ago, stepped forward, setting principle before party, to hold accountable presidents who put their country in peril.

    Posted by Eric at 03:54 PM | Comments (0)

    Comedy Monday

    "Nader actually said we have very serious differences with John Kerry. What's with the 'we'? Don't you have to have at least one supporter to be a 'we'?" Jay Leno

    "John Kerry speaks French, but he tries to avoid it. So, if a reporter asks him questions in French he'll pretend like he doesn't understand. Bush, on the other hand, has the same problem with English." David Letterman

    "John Kerry met with Ralph Nader. Wouldn't you have liked to have been a fly on the wall for that conversation? And if you had, you would have been the most charismatic thing in the room." David Letterman

    "John Kerry is on the attack and he has called now for the resignation of Donald Rumsfeld. As a response, Rumsfeld stripped Kerry naked and ran him around on a leash." David Letterman

    "The latest polls find the president at 44 percent, about half of what they were when everybody overcompensated for underestimating him." Michael Feldman


    Jon Stewart's commencement address at William and Marry.

    Flashback: Conan O'Brien's commencement address at Harvard.

    Top 10 Dirtiest Foods Will Make You Sick.

    Jon Lovitz is 'stud muffin,' model says.

    Jewel Concert: Fan calls it the worst concert ever :

    "People were literally walking out of the show," she said. "As soon as she came out, she began to insult us. We thought she was joking at first because it was kind of weird."

    Witnesses said Jewel went on a tirade of insults from poking fun at fat people to others with no teeth. At one point, she asked the audience to yell requests and then told them to "shut the hell up."

    "I saw her live in Boston and it was the greatest show I’ve ever been to," Dion said. "I don’t know if she was having a nervous breakdown or what. She told everyone to stop looking at her teeth and look at her breasts."


    Faux News. USA Network To Air Series Finale Of Rumsfeld.

    DU. The Top Ten Conservative Idiots.

    The Onion. Asshole Admits To Being Asshole In Supreme Asshole Move.

    The Onion. U.S. To Fight Terror With Terror.

    TheOnion.com: White House Slam Dunk Contest Results In No Slam Dunks
    WASHINGTON, DC—The annual White House Slam Dunk Contest, a spring ritual since 1977, featured its usual share of cringe-worthy misses and twisted knees Monday, but once again, no slam dunks. "I tell you, this is some sorry stuff I'm seeing," celebrity judge and former San Antonio Spur George "Iceman" Gervin said, holding up a "1" card after press secretary Scott McClellan made an awkward leap in a pair of wingtips. "The three-point contest was bad enough, but this is just depressing." The last White House slam dunk on record occurred in 1983, when a blindfolded Secretary of the Interior James Watt leaped from the foul line to execute an aerial 360-spin into a tomahawk that shattered the backboard.


    Drawings.

    natalie dee.

    exploding dog


    Ali G Quotes.

    "There has been enough sadness since the terrible events of 7-11"

    "You better learn these things from my man Buzz Lightyear"

    "Is Disneyland a part of the UN?"

    Ali : Do you think women should be on juries?
    Pickles : Oh yes, of course.
    Ali : What about when they got the painters in?
    Pickles : I'm sorry?
    Ali : What about when it's rag week? How can they be thinking straight, serious! Serious, my woman, she doesn't know what's going on, guilty *everyone is guilty when it's her time, everyone is guilty, I do something small - GUILTY! You should be chopped, whatever.
    Pickles : I don't honestly think you could start asking people intimate questions and say "no, you can't do this."
    Ali : Exactly, this is why you should not have women on juries.

    Ali G: Is the brain's memory any good?
    C. Everett Koop: The brain's memory is perfect.
    Ali G: Then how come I can't remember me pin number?
    C. Everett Koop: Well...
    Ali G: I think it's got like a '4' in it...
    C. Everett Koop: I can give you a quick answer and say you're stupid.
    Ali G: Well, that's obviously not the real reason.
    C. Everett Koop: Well, it's the beginning of truth.

    Attribution: IMDB, Shane McDonald


    Click down for comics.

    Posted by Eric at 03:50 PM | Comments (9)

    Comedy Monday

    "Nader actually said we have very serious differences with John Kerry. What's with the 'we'? Don't you have to have at least one supporter to be a 'we'?" Jay Leno

    "John Kerry speaks French, but he tries to avoid it. So, if a reporter asks him questions in French he'll pretend like he doesn't understand. Bush, on the other hand, has the same problem with English." David Letterman

    "John Kerry met with Ralph Nader. Wouldn't you have liked to have been a fly on the wall for that conversation? And if you had, you would have been the most charismatic thing in the room." David Letterman

    "John Kerry is on the attack and he has called now for the resignation of Donald Rumsfeld. As a response, Rumsfeld stripped Kerry naked and ran him around on a leash." David Letterman

    "The latest polls find the president at 44 percent, about half of what they were when everybody overcompensated for underestimating him." Michael Feldman


    Jon Stewart's commencement address at William and Marry.

    Flashback: Conan O'Brien's commencement address at Harvard.

    Top 10 Dirtiest Foods Will Make You Sick.

    Jon Lovitz is 'stud muffin,' model says.

    Jewel Concert: Fan calls it the worst concert ever :

    "People were literally walking out of the show," she said. "As soon as she came out, she began to insult us. We thought she was joking at first because it was kind of weird."

    Witnesses said Jewel went on a tirade of insults from poking fun at fat people to others with no teeth. At one point, she asked the audience to yell requests and then told them to "shut the hell up."

    "I saw her live in Boston and it was the greatest show I’ve ever been to," Dion said. "I don’t know if she was having a nervous breakdown or what. She told everyone to stop looking at her teeth and look at her breasts."


    Faux News. USA Network To Air Series Finale Of Rumsfeld.

    DU. The Top Ten Conservative Idiots.

    The Onion. Asshole Admits To Being Asshole In Supreme Asshole Move.

    The Onion. U.S. To Fight Terror With Terror.

    TheOnion.com: White House Slam Dunk Contest Results In No Slam Dunks
    WASHINGTON, DC—The annual White House Slam Dunk Contest, a spring ritual since 1977, featured its usual share of cringe-worthy misses and twisted knees Monday, but once again, no slam dunks. "I tell you, this is some sorry stuff I'm seeing," celebrity judge and former San Antonio Spur George "Iceman" Gervin said, holding up a "1" card after press secretary Scott McClellan made an awkward leap in a pair of wingtips. "The three-point contest was bad enough, but this is just depressing." The last White House slam dunk on record occurred in 1983, when a blindfolded Secretary of the Interior James Watt leaped from the foul line to execute an aerial 360-spin into a tomahawk that shattered the backboard.


    Drawings.

    natalie dee.

    exploding dog


    Ali G Quotes.

    "There has been enough sadness since the terrible events of 7-11"

    "You better learn these things from my man Buzz Lightyear"

    "Is Disneyland a part of the UN?"

    Ali : Do you think women should be on juries?
    Pickles : Oh yes, of course.
    Ali : What about when they got the painters in?
    Pickles : I'm sorry?
    Ali : What about when it's rag week? How can they be thinking straight, serious! Serious, my woman, she doesn't know what's going on, guilty *everyone is guilty when it's her time, everyone is guilty, I do something small - GUILTY! You should be chopped, whatever.
    Pickles : I don't honestly think you could start asking people intimate questions and say "no, you can't do this."
    Ali : Exactly, this is why you should not have women on juries.

    Ali G: Is the brain's memory any good?
    C. Everett Koop: The brain's memory is perfect.
    Ali G: Then how come I can't remember me pin number?
    C. Everett Koop: Well...
    Ali G: I think it's got like a '4' in it...
    C. Everett Koop: I can give you a quick answer and say you're stupid.
    Ali G: Well, that's obviously not the real reason.
    C. Everett Koop: Well, it's the beginning of truth.

    Attribution: IMDB, Shane McDonald


    Click down for comics.

    Posted by Eric at 03:50 PM | Comments (1)

    Merrill Lynch Donates Over 12m to Bush

    From the WPost:

    The money flowing from Merrill Lynch employees is part of a $12.14 million tidal wave of cash to the Bush campaign from the finance and insurance sectors.

    Wall Street has stepped up to the plate in support of Bush, and Bush has sponsored legislation producing billions of dollars in revenue on Wall Street.

    Capital gains and dividend tax cuts have encouraged substantial asset shifting by investors -- transactions producing commissions for securities firms. In addition, in 2001, Bush secured a gradual repeal of the estate tax, allowing the accumulation of investment wealth without fear of large tax liability for heirs.

    Posted by Eric at 02:01 PM | Comments (11)

    Merrill Lynch Donates Over 12m to Bush

    From the WPost:

    The money flowing from Merrill Lynch employees is part of a $12.14 million tidal wave of cash to the Bush campaign from the finance and insurance sectors.

    Wall Street has stepped up to the plate in support of Bush, and Bush has sponsored legislation producing billions of dollars in revenue on Wall Street.

    Capital gains and dividend tax cuts have encouraged substantial asset shifting by investors -- transactions producing commissions for securities firms. In addition, in 2001, Bush secured a gradual repeal of the estate tax, allowing the accumulation of investment wealth without fear of large tax liability for heirs.

    Posted by Eric at 02:01 PM | Comments (0)

    Another Unpatriotic American

    How dare he put the troops in harms way by criticizing the president! *huff huff huff*

    Lugar, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said the nation must prevent terrorism from taking root around the world by "repairing and building alliances," increasing trade, supporting democracy, addressing regional conflicts and controlling weapons of mass destruction.

    Unless the country commits itself to such measures, "we are likely to experience acts of catastrophic terrorism that would undermine our economy, damage our society and kill hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people," the Indiana senator said during an appearance at the Fletcher School at Tufts University.

    Lugar said military might alone isn't enough to eradicate terrorism.

    "To win the war against terrorism, the United States must assign U.S. economic and diplomatic capabilities the same strategic priority that we assign to military capabilities," he said.

    Posted by Eric at 12:55 AM | Comments (1)

    Another Unpatriotic American

    How dare he put the troops in harms way by criticizing the president! *huff huff huff*

    Lugar, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said the nation must prevent terrorism from taking root around the world by "repairing and building alliances," increasing trade, supporting democracy, addressing regional conflicts and controlling weapons of mass destruction.

    Unless the country commits itself to such measures, "we are likely to experience acts of catastrophic terrorism that would undermine our economy, damage our society and kill hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people," the Indiana senator said during an appearance at the Fletcher School at Tufts University.

    Lugar said military might alone isn't enough to eradicate terrorism.

    "To win the war against terrorism, the United States must assign U.S. economic and diplomatic capabilities the same strategic priority that we assign to military capabilities," he said.

    Posted by Eric at 12:55 AM | Comments (1)

    Incompetent

    The DCCC blog has several quotes from leaders about the incompetent management of the Iraqi war, including:

    "I believe we are absolutely on the brink of failure. We are looking into the abyss."
    -- General Joseph Hoar, a former commander in chief of U.S. Central Command; testimony to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, May 20, 2004

    "I'm surprised that he is surprised because there was a lot of us who were telling [Rumsfeld] that it was going to be thus... Anyone could know the problems they were going to see. How could they not?...I think that some heads should roll over Iraq. I think the president got some bad advice."
    -- Retired Marine General Anthony Zinni, San Diego Union-Tribune, April 16, 2004

    "I think we got in there with a grossly anemic military force. We never defeated the elite elements of the Saddam regime. They walked away with their guns, their money, their leadership intact."
    -- Retired General Barry McCaffrey; NPR "Morning Edition," April 15, 2004

    Posted by Eric at 12:43 AM | Comments (5)

    Incompetent

    The DCCC blog has several quotes from leaders about the incompetent management of the Iraqi war, including:

    "I believe we are absolutely on the brink of failure. We are looking into the abyss."
    -- General Joseph Hoar, a former commander in chief of U.S. Central Command; testimony to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, May 20, 2004

    "I'm surprised that he is surprised because there was a lot of us who were telling [Rumsfeld] that it was going to be thus... Anyone could know the problems they were going to see. How could they not?...I think that some heads should roll over Iraq. I think the president got some bad advice."
    -- Retired Marine General Anthony Zinni, San Diego Union-Tribune, April 16, 2004

    "I think we got in there with a grossly anemic military force. We never defeated the elite elements of the Saddam regime. They walked away with their guns, their money, their leadership intact."
    -- Retired General Barry McCaffrey; NPR "Morning Edition," April 15, 2004

    Posted by Eric at 12:43 AM | Comments (0)

    Scientists: 'The ice is melting much faster than we thought'

    From the UK Indy, global temps are causing the Greenland ice sheet to melt at a quicker than expected pace:

    Two recent climatic events are warning signs that climate change may be proceeding much more quickly than previously thought, James Lovelock claimed.

    They are the increasingly rapid melting of the Arctic ice-sheet covering Greenland, which will raise global sea levels considerably, and the extreme heatwave in western central Europe in the first two weeks of last August.

    The latter, which saw the British temperature record exceed 100F for the first time, produced 20,000 deaths of mostly elderly people in France, where heat levels, especially at night, were highest.

    Senior scientists, including a team from the Swiss Met Office and Phil Jones, head of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, have since said that last year's heatwave was entirely unprecedented in climatic history, and attributed it directly to climate change. "There's no question in any reasonable scientist's mind that that was the first real bad event of global warming," said Professor Lovelock. "But the media picked it up only as a story about the wickedness of the French in not looking after their old people."

    Just as alarming, he said, is the dissolving of the Greenland ice sheet, which measurements show is "melting far faster than we expected".

    Posted by Eric at 12:39 AM | Comments (24)

    Scientists: 'The ice is melting much faster than we thought'

    From the UK Indy, global temps are causing the Greenland ice sheet to melt at a quicker than expected pace:

    Two recent climatic events are warning signs that climate change may be proceeding much more quickly than previously thought, James Lovelock claimed.

    They are the increasingly rapid melting of the Arctic ice-sheet covering Greenland, which will raise global sea levels considerably, and the extreme heatwave in western central Europe in the first two weeks of last August.

    The latter, which saw the British temperature record exceed 100F for the first time, produced 20,000 deaths of mostly elderly people in France, where heat levels, especially at night, were highest.

    Senior scientists, including a team from the Swiss Met Office and Phil Jones, head of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, have since said that last year's heatwave was entirely unprecedented in climatic history, and attributed it directly to climate change. "There's no question in any reasonable scientist's mind that that was the first real bad event of global warming," said Professor Lovelock. "But the media picked it up only as a story about the wickedness of the French in not looking after their old people."

    Just as alarming, he said, is the dissolving of the Greenland ice sheet, which measurements show is "melting far faster than we expected".

    Posted by Eric at 12:39 AM | Comments (4)

    May 23, 2004

    Some Crazy Liberal Says Army Screwed Up

    Retired General Anthony Zinni told CBS's "60 Minutes" that "there has been poor strategic thinking" in regards to Iraq.

    I think there was dereliction in insufficient forces being put on the ground and fully understanding the military dimensions of the plan. I think there was dereliction in lack of planning,” says Zinni. “The president is owed the finest strategic thinking. He is owed the finest operational planning. He is owed the finest tactical execution on the ground. … He got the latter. He didn’t get the first two.”

    Zinni says Iraq was the wrong war at the wrong time - with the wrong strategy. And he was saying it before the U.S. invasion. In the months leading up to the war, while still Middle East envoy, Zinni carried the message to Congress: “This is, in my view, the worst time to take this on. And I don’t feel it needs to be done now.”

    But he wasn’t the only former military leader with doubts about the invasion of Iraq. Former General and National Security Advisor Brent Scowcroft, former Centcom Commander Norman Schwarzkopf, former NATO Commander Wesley Clark, and former Army Chief of Staff Eric Shinseki all voiced their reservations.

    Zinni believes this was a war the generals didn’t want – but it was a war the civilians wanted.

    Posted by Eric at 09:58 PM | Comments (8)

    Some Crazy Liberal Says Army Screwed Up

    Retired General Anthony Zinni told CBS's "60 Minutes" that "there has been poor strategic thinking" in regards to Iraq.

    I think there was dereliction in insufficient forces being put on the ground and fully understanding the military dimensions of the plan. I think there was dereliction in lack of planning,” says Zinni. “The president is owed the finest strategic thinking. He is owed the finest operational planning. He is owed the finest tactical execution on the ground. … He got the latter. He didn’t get the first two.”

    Zinni says Iraq was the wrong war at the wrong time - with the wrong strategy. And he was saying it before the U.S. invasion. In the months leading up to the war, while still Middle East envoy, Zinni carried the message to Congress: “This is, in my view, the worst time to take this on. And I don’t feel it needs to be done now.”

    But he wasn’t the only former military leader with doubts about the invasion of Iraq. Former General and National Security Advisor Brent Scowcroft, former Centcom Commander Norman Schwarzkopf, former NATO Commander Wesley Clark, and former Army Chief of Staff Eric Shinseki all voiced their reservations.

    Zinni believes this was a war the generals didn’t want – but it was a war the civilians wanted.

    Posted by Eric at 09:58 PM | Comments (2)

    May 22, 2004

    Chalabi's INC Front for Iran?

    Oh, what a tangled web we weave. Newsday:

    The Defense Intelligence Agency has concluded that a U.S.-funded arm of Ahmad Chalabi's Iraqi National Congress has been used for years by Iranian intelligence to pass disinformation to the United States and to collect highly sensitive American secrets, according to intelligence sources.

    "Iranian intelligence has been manipulating the United States through Chalabi by furnishing through his Information Collection Program information to provoke the United States into getting rid of Saddam Hussein," said an intelligence source Friday who was briefed on the Defense Intelligence Agency's conclusions, which were based on a review of thousands of internal documents.

    The Information Collection Program also "kept the Iranians informed about what we were doing" by passing classified U.S. documents and other sensitive information, he said. The program has received millions of dollars from the U.S. government over several years.

    An administration official confirmed that "highly classified information had been provided [to the Iranians] through that channel."

    Posted by Eric at 06:27 PM | Comments (39)

    Chalabi's INC Front for Iran?

    Oh, what a tangled web we weave. Newsday:

    The Defense Intelligence Agency has concluded that a U.S.-funded arm of Ahmad Chalabi's Iraqi National Congress has been used for years by Iranian intelligence to pass disinformation to the United States and to collect highly sensitive American secrets, according to intelligence sources.

    "Iranian intelligence has been manipulating the United States through Chalabi by furnishing through his Information Collection Program information to provoke the United States into getting rid of Saddam Hussein," said an intelligence source Friday who was briefed on the Defense Intelligence Agency's conclusions, which were based on a review of thousands of internal documents.

    The Information Collection Program also "kept the Iranians informed about what we were doing" by passing classified U.S. documents and other sensitive information, he said. The program has received millions of dollars from the U.S. government over several years.

    An administration official confirmed that "highly classified information had been provided [to the Iranians] through that channel."

    Posted by Eric at 06:27 PM | Comments (9)

    Hamster Numbers: Dollars & Death Penalty

    From the Western Prision Project:

    Estimated cost of a death penalty trial, in dollars: $2 million
    Number of times a capital trial is more expensive than a non-capital trial, in California: 6
    Amount that California could save per year by abolishing capital punishment: $90 million
    Cost in New Jersey in 1991 to impose the death penalty: $16 million
    Number of police laid off in New Jersey in 1992 due to lack of funds to pay them: 500
    Ratio of spending in Jasper County, Mississippi on one capital trial in 1995 to its spending on libraries: 5 to 1

    Posted by Eric at 03:43 PM | Comments (6)

    Hamster Numbers: Dollars & Death Penalty

    From the Western Prision Project:

    Estimated cost of a death penalty trial, in dollars: $2 million
    Number of times a capital trial is more expensive than a non-capital trial, in California: 6
    Amount that California could save per year by abolishing capital punishment: $90 million
    Cost in New Jersey in 1991 to impose the death penalty: $16 million
    Number of police laid off in New Jersey in 1992 due to lack of funds to pay them: 500
    Ratio of spending in Jasper County, Mississippi on one capital trial in 1995 to its spending on libraries: 5 to 1

    Posted by Eric at 03:43 PM | Comments (0)

    The Wit and Wisdom of Ann Coulter

    Ann Coulter on Hannity and Colmes, as noted by Media Matters:

    COULTER: I think [calling Clinton a scumbag] is factually correct.

    COLMES: It is an opinion. It is name calling, is what it is.

    COULTER: I don't think you could win a slander suit on that. Truth is a defense.

    JENNY BACKUS [DEMCRATIC STRATEGIST]: There you go again. It's a double standard. It is, it's a double standard.

    COULTER: It's a double standard? Wait, this man [Clinton] raped a woman. This man molested interns in the White House, and then he lied about it and committed felonies.

    Coulter has a good, strong history of tasteful rhetoric and pure truth.

    And if Coulter is truly a representation of the GOP (a general optimist of human nature would hope not), there apparently isn't room in the party for:

    Muslims - "Muslims smell bad"; "We should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity"

    Veterans - e.g. Max Cleland.

    or Asians - e.g. Norman Mineta

    Posted by Eric at 03:39 PM | Comments (24)

    The Wit and Wisdom of Ann Coulter

    Ann Coulter on Hannity and Colmes, as noted by Media Matters:

    COULTER: I think [calling Clinton a scumbag] is factually correct.

    COLMES: It is an opinion. It is name calling, is what it is.

    COULTER: I don't think you could win a slander suit on that. Truth is a defense.

    JENNY BACKUS [DEMCRATIC STRATEGIST]: There you go again. It's a double standard. It is, it's a double standard.

    COULTER: It's a double standard? Wait, this man [Clinton] raped a woman. This man molested interns in the White House, and then he lied about it and committed felonies.

    Coulter has a good, strong history of tasteful rhetoric and pure truth.

    And if Coulter is truly a representation of the GOP (a general optimist of human nature would hope not), there apparently isn't room in the party for:

    Muslims - "Muslims smell bad"; "We should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity"

    Veterans - e.g. Max Cleland.

    or Asians - e.g. Norman Mineta

    Posted by Eric at 03:39 PM | Comments (16)

    May 21, 2004

    TGIF

    News
    WP. New Abuse Details Emerge from Iraqis
    NYT. Mutiny by 4 Republicans Over Bush's Tax Cutting Forces Delay on the Budget Vote
    NYT. House Approves $447 Billion in Spending for Military
    NYT. Congress Is Seen to Support a Bill to Regulate Tobacco
    Financial Times. Republicans line up to finance top Democrat Daschle
    Times-Picayune. Bush visits LA today in state that may be up for grabs
    USAT. Bush to launch new anti-Kerry ad blitz
    NYT. Chalabi's Seat of Honor Lost to Open Political Warfare With U.S.
    NYT. Wall Street to Toast Its G.O.P. Overseers During Convention
    LAT. Bush's Cash Edge Over Kerry Narrows
    LAT. Bush Steps In for GOP Unity
    LAT. Senate Leader Frist to Campaign Against Daschle
    AP. Bush forced to fight for La. votes
    AP. Kerry faces opposition from NRA members
    AP. Bush campaign has spent $126m
    BGlobe. Amid day of campaigning, Kerry pauses for budget
    BGlobe. Bush tries to assuage antsy Republicans
    BGlobe. Her husband embattled, Mrs. Bush plays rescuer
    Reuters. Liberal radio network Air America raising new cash

    Commentary
    Eric Alterman. Hawks Eating Crow
    Kristin V. Jones. Who Let the Punks Out? The young and the angry mosh the vote for the November election
    Jeffrey Bader. The Path to Peace in Taiwan
    John Podesta and Sonal Shah. A Progressive Trade Agenda
    Siddharth Srivastava. How India funds Bush's campaign
    Barbara Ehrenreich. What Abu Ghraib Taught Me
    Nino Brown. How the AK-47 Came to Rule the Streets
    Bob Herbert. 'Gooks' to 'Hajis'
    NY Times. Chalabi: Friends Like This
    Helen Thomas. Kerry should restage war protest
    Derrick Z. Jackson. Rhetoric for kids, money for war
    Scott Allen Miller. FCC sows confusion in 'holy war' on profanity
    Walter Shapiro. Liberals show they can work together

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (10)

    TGIF

    News
    WP. New Abuse Details Emerge from Iraqis
    NYT. Mutiny by 4 Republicans Over Bush's Tax Cutting Forces Delay on the Budget Vote
    NYT. House Approves $447 Billion in Spending for Military
    NYT. Congress Is Seen to Support a Bill to Regulate Tobacco
    Financial Times. Republicans line up to finance top Democrat Daschle
    Times-Picayune. Bush visits LA today in state that may be up for grabs
    USAT. Bush to launch new anti-Kerry ad blitz
    NYT. Chalabi's Seat of Honor Lost to Open Political Warfare With U.S.
    NYT. Wall Street to Toast Its G.O.P. Overseers During Convention
    LAT. Bush's Cash Edge Over Kerry Narrows
    LAT. Bush Steps In for GOP Unity
    LAT. Senate Leader Frist to Campaign Against Daschle
    AP. Bush forced to fight for La. votes
    AP. Kerry faces opposition from NRA members
    AP. Bush campaign has spent $126m
    BGlobe. Amid day of campaigning, Kerry pauses for budget
    BGlobe. Bush tries to assuage antsy Republicans
    BGlobe. Her husband embattled, Mrs. Bush plays rescuer
    Reuters. Liberal radio network Air America raising new cash

    Commentary
    Eric Alterman. Hawks Eating Crow
    Kristin V. Jones. Who Let the Punks Out? The young and the angry mosh the vote for the November election
    Jeffrey Bader. The Path to Peace in Taiwan
    John Podesta and Sonal Shah. A Progressive Trade Agenda
    Siddharth Srivastava. How India funds Bush's campaign
    Barbara Ehrenreich. What Abu Ghraib Taught Me
    Nino Brown. How the AK-47 Came to Rule the Streets
    Bob Herbert. 'Gooks' to 'Hajis'
    NY Times. Chalabi: Friends Like This
    Helen Thomas. Kerry should restage war protest
    Derrick Z. Jackson. Rhetoric for kids, money for war
    Scott Allen Miller. FCC sows confusion in 'holy war' on profanity
    Walter Shapiro. Liberals show they can work together

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (0)

    Clark - Drudge Rumor Persists

    Columbia's CJR reports on the "The Drudge Report: The Gift That Keeps on Giving":

    Back in February, Matt Drudge wrote an undocumented story claiming that one of John Kerry's interns had fled the country at the candidate's request, just as Kerry was fighting off a "media probe of recent alleged infidelity." In the piece, Drudge claimed that Wesley Clark had told a group of reporters that "Kerry will implode over an intern issue" in an off-the-record conversation.

    The Kerry intern story turned out to be bogus, as did the claim that Clark had spread the rumor. As Campaign Desk noted at the time (and has written about subsequently as well), The New Republic's Ryan Lizza and reporters we spoke to on background who were present for the comments all confirm that Clark never said anything about an intern during the conversation in question. The retired general did say he believed there was a story coming out that might damage Kerry, but, according to one reporter, he didn't seem to have any idea what it might be.

    Thankfully, the rumor about Kerry's infidelity seems to have faded into the ether. But, maddeningly, the claim that Clark spread the rumor has endured. An alert reader emailed us today about a Boston Globe piece by Peter Canellos containing the following paragraph ...

    Posted by Eric at 02:52 PM | Comments (23)

    Clark - Drudge Rumor Persists

    Columbia's CJR reports on the "The Drudge Report: The Gift That Keeps on Giving":

    Back in February, Matt Drudge wrote an undocumented story claiming that one of John Kerry's interns had fled the country at the candidate's request, just as Kerry was fighting off a "media probe of recent alleged infidelity." In the piece, Drudge claimed that Wesley Clark had told a group of reporters that "Kerry will implode over an intern issue" in an off-the-record conversation.

    The Kerry intern story turned out to be bogus, as did the claim that Clark had spread the rumor. As Campaign Desk noted at the time (and has written about subsequently as well), The New Republic's Ryan Lizza and reporters we spoke to on background who were present for the comments all confirm that Clark never said anything about an intern during the conversation in question. The retired general did say he believed there was a story coming out that might damage Kerry, but, according to one reporter, he didn't seem to have any idea what it might be.

    Thankfully, the rumor about Kerry's infidelity seems to have faded into the ether. But, maddeningly, the claim that Clark spread the rumor has endured. An alert reader emailed us today about a Boston Globe piece by Peter Canellos containing the following paragraph ...

    Posted by Eric at 02:52 PM | Comments (4)

    Bush Outsourced Fundraising & Voter Operations

    From Misleader.org:

    According to the report, the Republican National Committee shipped the India operation its voter database for 125 local staff to use to "solicit political contributions ranging between $5 and $3,000 from thousands of registered Republican voters." While the contract for running the campaigns was originally awarded to Washington-based Capital Communications Group, "for cost and efficiencies gains, the company outsourced the work to HCL Technologies that in turn sent it offshore."

    Public pressure has forced President Bush has to downplay his support for outsourcing. But this new story is consistent with his Administration's actions in support of shipping American jobs overseas. Late last year, the New York Times reported that the Bush Commerce Department co-sponsored a conference at the lavish Waldorf Astoria hotel in New York that was designed to "encourage American companies to put operations and jobs in China". Then, this year, the President's top economic adviser said outsourcing was "a plus for the economy".

    Posted by Eric at 01:59 PM | Comments (28)

    Bush Outsourced Fundraising & Voter Operations

    From Misleader.org:

    According to the report, the Republican National Committee shipped the India operation its voter database for 125 local staff to use to "solicit political contributions ranging between $5 and $3,000 from thousands of registered Republican voters." While the contract for running the campaigns was originally awarded to Washington-based Capital Communications Group, "for cost and efficiencies gains, the company outsourced the work to HCL Technologies that in turn sent it offshore."

    Public pressure has forced President Bush has to downplay his support for outsourcing. But this new story is consistent with his Administration's actions in support of shipping American jobs overseas. Late last year, the New York Times reported that the Bush Commerce Department co-sponsored a conference at the lavish Waldorf Astoria hotel in New York that was designed to "encourage American companies to put operations and jobs in China". Then, this year, the President's top economic adviser said outsourcing was "a plus for the economy".

    Posted by Eric at 01:59 PM | Comments (5)

    Canvass for Stephanie Herseth

    Link from Daily Kos, check the Pelosi site for more details on how to help in South Dakota.

    Posted by Eric at 12:31 PM | Comments (20)

    Canvass for Stephanie Herseth

    Link from Daily Kos, check the Pelosi site for more details on how to help in South Dakota.

    Posted by Eric at 12:31 PM | Comments (6)

    Did Howard Dean Diss Colmes?

    Link from CableNewser, an exchange on Hannity and Colmes on Wednesday night:

    COLMES: We've got to go. But I want to ask you -- you say -- Governor, in case you ever get that television job...
    DEAN: Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reilly.
    COLMES: In case you ever get the television job, I want to give you a chance to do my outgoing read. So go ahead. Look at the teleprompter.
    DEAN: All right.
    COLMES: This could be a break for you. Go ahead.
    DEAN: If I get a talk show, it's going to be called -- because Alan is not defending liberals hard enough. It's going to be called "HANNITY & DEAN."
    EDIT: I've been asked to provide the entire transcript, which is posted in the extended entry below.

    HEADLINE: Howard Dean Backing Kerry

    GUESTS: Howard Dean

    BYLINE: Sean Hannity, Alan Colmes

    BODY:
    HANNITY: As we continue on HANNITY & COLMES, I'm Sean Hannity. Also coming up tonight, he former New York City mayor, Rudy Giuliani, did he convince today the 9/11 commission that the city did the best that they could in the most dire of circumstances? The mayor will be with us tonight.

    But first, Howard Dean. He battled it out with John Kerry for the Democratic presidential nomination, but now he stands in his corner as an ally against President George W. Bush.

    Are the one-time bitter rivals more alike than they thought?

    Joining us now former Vermont governor and former presidential hopeful Howard Dean. How are you doing?

    HOWARD DEAN (D), I'm doing great, Sean.

    HANNITY: It's good to see you. I can't believe you're even here, sitting next to me.

    DEAN: Here I am with this incredible Denison of the far right...

    HANNITY: I just gave you a copy of my book.

    DEAN: I have to say that Sean treated me very well in New Hampshire.

    HANNITY: I did.

    DEAN: You may not agree, but you treated me well.

    HANNITY: You know, I'm going to serve you a compliment before I go at you -- because I'm going to go at you -- I think there's one big distinction between you and John Kerry. I think you believe in something. I think you -- we had George McGovern...

    DEAN: He's smart, isn't he?

    HANNITY: No -- no -- I think you are the real deal. You are -- You're passionate about your beliefs and you stated them forcefully. John Kerry doesn't...

    DEAN: He doesn't say anything bad about me, but he nails John Kerry in the opening sentence.

    I'm supporting John Kerry because he will be by far a better president than George Bush. Would you rather than the security of the United States of America entrusted to a guy with three Purple Hearts and a Bronze Star, a Silver Star, or a guy who served his time in the Alabama National Guard, sort of?

    HANNITY: I like National Guard service. I don't diminish it.

    DEAN: I think it's great, but...

    HANNITY: John Kerry -- When Reagan was winning the Cold War, John Kerry wanted a nuclear freeze. He was on the wrong side of history.

    John Kerry didn't support the death penalty for terrorists who killed Americans.

    DEAN: He actually does.

    HANNITY: Well, he didn't in 1989 when he had a chance to vote on it. He flip-flopped.

    DEAN: An expert on his record I'm not.

    HANNITY: Let me put up on the screen...

    DEAN: Here we go, here we go.

    HANNITY: Let me put up on the screen the words of Howard Dean about John Kerry. Here's what you said about him.

    You said, "He's going to have a hard time if he's the nominee. I think electability's a real issue for him. He appears to change his mind so often."

    Then you said, "He has this pattern. You saw it with No Child Left Behind. You saw it with the war. You see it with special interests, which I think is terribly damaging. It appears that his word is no good."

    And one more: "I think John Kerry is clearly not the best person to carry the banner of the Democrats in this race. He's behaved so much like Republicans, both in his voting record and now in his political practices for fundraising.

    Those are harsh words.

    DEAN: So Sean, you must think I come from the far left if I'm complaining that John's too much like a Republican.

    The problem with this media stuff is it's very selective. I didn't see you putting anything up of the comment that I said about George Bush.

    HANNITY: No, not at all. But you're now supporting the man that you said...

    DEAN: I'm supporting John Kerry, because I think he's going to be a much better president than George Bush.

    And you're going to find that out as of January 20 of 2005.

    HANNITY: But you accurately did point out something about him. He's had multiple positions on Iraq, No Child Left Behind, the death penalty for terrorists, weapons systems. I voted for the $87 billion before I voted against it.

    He brags about owning SUV's, and then on Earth Day he denies them, and then he has to explain my family owns them.

    What about sending all his people out to tout all the programs that he's supported, right, and he tried to cut them out of the budget?

    COLMES: You know, the amazing thing is, you can look at anybody's record and say, look what President Bush said before September 11.

    Look what he was saying about the nation building. Look what he was saying about the 9/11 commission, which now he's supposedly happily participating in.

    We can go in anybody's record. They misrepresented you.

    DEAN: How about the $30 million the president is bragging about handing out, when he tried to cut it out of the budget? This is ridiculous.

    COLMES: Let me ask you, do you view John Kerry differently now than you did when you were running against him?

    DEAN: I actually do, some. I've gotten to know him as a person. You know, when you're fighting with somebody for the nomination for the president of the United States, I'm a tough competitor. So is John Kerry.

    COLMES: I think we found that out.

    DEAN: It's going to be a knock down, drag out. But my assessment is one of two people is going to be president of the United States, John Kerry or George Bush.

    I go with the guy who's going to balance the budget, because I hate half-trillion deficits. I go with the guy who has a real environmental record instead of a phony one.

    COLMES: But I want to know how you view differently, now, than you did when were his competitor.

    DEAN: I think he's got a great shot at beating George Bush. He's a tough closer. You know, people say, well, Howard Dean was the frontrunner and he lost. The truth is John Kerry won, and I think -- we want to keep...

    COLMES: Do you look at this and say, you know, "that could be me," and "Boy, I really wish this were me"?

    DEAN: Sure. Of course I do. You don't run for president without hoping that you're going to win.

    COLMES: Or is it whew, I'm glad I'm not doing that now?

    DEAN: No. I mean...

    HANNITY: Where would you rather be? Still fighting?

    COLMES: If you're saying he were not the nominee he would not be on HANNITY & COLMES? But I mean, do you say there but for the grace of God go I, or is it boy, "I really want to be that person"?

    DEAN: Of course, I would have liked to have been the nominee, but I'm not the nominee. And so now the question is what's best for the country.

    In my assessment -- I'm sure Sean would not agree -- but in my assessment, John Kerry will be a great president.

    We're in deep trouble. We cannot run half-trillion-dollar deficits every single year for the next four years. We cannot continue to be bogged down in this quagmire of Iraq when the president, in fact, was not truthful about why we went to Iraq.

    We can't do those kinds of things, and I don't think John Kerry will do those kinds of things as president.

    COLMES: Are you convincing your people, the people who -- the legions of people who supported you, are you now then trying to sway them over to John Kerry? And what kind of an argument -- is that a difficult argument to make?

    DEAN: The argument -- I never say, oh, I disagree with John Kerry now, and now he's perfect. I don't ever say that.

    I said, "Look, John Kerry and I had our disagreements. But the truth is there are one of two people who are going to be president of the United States."

    And in terms of all the people who supported me, their positions on most issues, including all the moderate Republicans who supported me, are much closer to John Kerry's positions than they are to George Bush's positions.

    HANNITY: We'll take a break. We'll have more with Governor Dean on the other side of the break.

    And then, could New York City have done more to protect its citizens from the terrorist attack of 9/11?

    Rudy Giuliani, former mayor of New York, he testified before the 9/11 commission today. He will check in, and he will join us.

    That's coming up straight ahead.

    (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

    COLMES: Welcome back to HANNITY & COLMES. I'm Alan Colmes.

    Coming up, should former Mayor Rudy Giuliani have had to defend the city's police and firemen in today's 9/11 hearing? Rudy Giuliani will be here.

    It's been a major cheap shot by a conservative group, a new pro-Bush ad goes way too far. We'll tell you all about it.

    First, we continue with former presidential candidate Howard Dean.

    DEAN: I'm really glad this show is not too partisan.

    COLMES: That's good. Maybe you'll fill in for me one time.

    DEAN: There you go.

    COLMES: Would you want to do TV?

    DEAN: I don't know about that, we'll see.

    COLMES: I mean, if a good deal came along? There were kind of rumors about that at one point.

    DEAN: Actually, I've got my hands full right now. We started this new group called Democracy for America.

    And we had quite a few hundred -- hundreds of thousands of people following us during the campaign. We want to keep those people energized. Those are, for the most part, young people part and people who had been disillusioned with politics. And we've got to keep them involved.

    COLMES: You came with -- they came with Dean's dozen, I guess. People like Jeff Smith from Missouri.

    DEAN: Yes.

    COLMES: Lori Saldana, state assembly in California. How does one get on the Dean list?

    DEAN: Well, we have a grass roots process. You get nominated by -- We still have 350 Dean meet ups going on around the country and we still maintain a very active web site, Democracy for America.

    COLMES: What does a candidate do to qualify to be -- get the Dean seal of approval?

    DEAN: Well, they have to have all the -- you know, they have to adhere to positions that Sean would really like a lot, like, you know, universal healthcare for people, strong environmental protection and things of that sort.

    COLMES: What about the Nader...

    DEAN: And fiscal responsibility.

    COLMES: Let me ask you about Ralph Nader. Are you working with John Kerry in an attempt at all to get Nader to throw his support to the Democratic nominee?

    DEAN: I don't believe, having spoken with Ralph Nader, that he is going to drop out of the race. I am trying to convince people that a vote for Ralph Nader is the same as a vote for George Bush.

    Ralph Nader has got a long history of consumers and environmentalism, but he is most likely right now to be helping George Bush get re-elected, and I don't think that's a good thing.

    COLMES: He's polling at six percent, according to some polls, more than he did last time.

    DEAN: Right.

    COLMES: What do you think it takes -- what does John Kerry need to do, what do the Democrats need to do to neutralize the Nader vote?

    DEAN: We just need to make the case in a straightforward way. A lot of the people who followed me -- I had a spectrum of moderate Republicans who were really worried about the deficit and the war, all the way to Nader folks and Green folks and a lot of Democrats in between.

    And what we need to do is have that -- build that broad coalition of people who are fiscally responsible but socially more centrist.

    HANNITY: Governor, let me ask you this. Who, one year ago said the following things: that Saddam's weapons of mass destruction are a threat and we need to disarm him? Who said leaving Saddam unfettered with nuclear weapons or WMD's is unacceptable?

    Who said, "If you don't believe he's a threat with nuclear weapons don't vote for me"? And who said, "We need to disarm him. He's a brutal, murderous dictator, and Iraq's WMD's pose a great threat to the USA."

    Who said...

    DEAN: I don't know, who said that? You tell me.

    HANNITY: Just take a guess.

    DEAN: No.

    HANNITY: John Kerry one year ago. One year ago. Look where John Kerry is today. Look at John Kerry. I mean, he's taken -- I think actually, you're responsible for making him take positions he probably didn't want to take.

    DEAN: I don't agree with that. I think John Kerry's position is a pretty responsible position. Look, you criticized me in your book, which you kindly gave me.

    HANNITY: I gave him a copy. That's right.

    DEAN: You criticized me for saying that we're not any safer since Saddam has been captured. Since that time 500 American -- brave American soldiers have lost their lives.

    HANNITY: I still think we're safer, though. You don't think we're safer, the world's better off?

    DEAN: Five hundred more Americans are dead and 200 more Spaniards are dead. I don't think we're any safer.

    Secondly, you criticized me for attacking the president for not telling the truth. Well, where are the weapons of mass destruction? Where are the nuclear weapons? Where's the uranium we were going to get from Niger?

    HANNITY: Why don't you ask John Kerry? John Kerry a year ago said we had all those things. Bill Clinton said that he had those things. The U.N. said that he had all those things. Here's my point, though.

    DEAN: The U.N. didn't say that al Qaeda and Saddam were in league. That was said by Dick Cheney and George Bush, and it turned out not to be true. We ought not to go to war without telling the truth to the American people about why we're there.

    HANNITY: Well, then John Kerry laid out the same case one year before the war, in 2003, leading up to the war.

    DEAN: The issue is the president of the United States' credibility. It's not what John Kerry said a year ago.

    HANNITY: John Kerry said the same thing. You're voting for him, and he laid out the same case as the president.

    DEAN: The president is responsible for sending troops abroad. If John Kerry becomes president, which I have every intention of helping him do, he's going to have to make -- someday make the tough decision about whether the troops are brought back.

    The difference between John Kerry and George Bush is I believe that John Kerry will tell the truth to the American people about why those troops had to go abroad.

    HANNITY: Governor, the two things I most disagreed with you on is the statement that you just said, "We're not any safer." I believe the world is safer.

    And when you advance that theory that George Bush might have been warned about 9/11 ahead of time...

    DEAN: I never...

    HANNITY: Well, you said it's an interesting theory.

    DEAN: Right, it's an interesting theory.

    HANNITY: Was that irresponsible, in retrospect?

    DEAN: Somebody brought that theory up, and I said I didn't personally believe it.

    HANNITY: But you repeated it. Why would you repeat it?

    DEAN: Well, look at all the things the conservative crackpots repeat all the time.

    COLMES: We've got to go. But I want to ask you -- you say -- Governor, in case you ever get that television job...

    DEAN: Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reilly.

    COLMES: In case you ever get the television job, I want to give you a chance to do my outgoing read. So go ahead. Look at the teleprompter.

    DEAN: All right.

    COLMES: This could be a break for you. Go ahead.

    DEAN: If I get a talk show, it's going to be called -- because Alan is not defending liberals hard enough. It's going to be called "HANNITY & DEAN."

    Coming up next, Rudy Giuliani passionately defends New York City's finest at the 9/11 hearings today. He'll join us.

    And then are Bush supporters exploiting the events of September 11, the support to help the president stay in the White House. We will bring you the "Cheap Shot of the Day."

    Posted by Eric at 11:01 AM | Comments (10)

    Did Howard Dean Diss Colmes?

    Link from CableNewser, an exchange on Hannity and Colmes on Wednesday night:

    COLMES: We've got to go. But I want to ask you -- you say -- Governor, in case you ever get that television job...
    DEAN: Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reilly.
    COLMES: In case you ever get the television job, I want to give you a chance to do my outgoing read. So go ahead. Look at the teleprompter.
    DEAN: All right.
    COLMES: This could be a break for you. Go ahead.
    DEAN: If I get a talk show, it's going to be called -- because Alan is not defending liberals hard enough. It's going to be called "HANNITY & DEAN."
    EDIT: I've been asked to provide the entire transcript, which is posted in the extended entry below.

    HEADLINE: Howard Dean Backing Kerry

    GUESTS: Howard Dean

    BYLINE: Sean Hannity, Alan Colmes

    BODY:
    HANNITY: As we continue on HANNITY & COLMES, I'm Sean Hannity. Also coming up tonight, he former New York City mayor, Rudy Giuliani, did he convince today the 9/11 commission that the city did the best that they could in the most dire of circumstances? The mayor will be with us tonight.

    But first, Howard Dean. He battled it out with John Kerry for the Democratic presidential nomination, but now he stands in his corner as an ally against President George W. Bush.

    Are the one-time bitter rivals more alike than they thought?

    Joining us now former Vermont governor and former presidential hopeful Howard Dean. How are you doing?

    HOWARD DEAN (D), I'm doing great, Sean.

    HANNITY: It's good to see you. I can't believe you're even here, sitting next to me.

    DEAN: Here I am with this incredible Denison of the far right...

    HANNITY: I just gave you a copy of my book.

    DEAN: I have to say that Sean treated me very well in New Hampshire.

    HANNITY: I did.

    DEAN: You may not agree, but you treated me well.

    HANNITY: You know, I'm going to serve you a compliment before I go at you -- because I'm going to go at you -- I think there's one big distinction between you and John Kerry. I think you believe in something. I think you -- we had George McGovern...

    DEAN: He's smart, isn't he?

    HANNITY: No -- no -- I think you are the real deal. You are -- You're passionate about your beliefs and you stated them forcefully. John Kerry doesn't...

    DEAN: He doesn't say anything bad about me, but he nails John Kerry in the opening sentence.

    I'm supporting John Kerry because he will be by far a better president than George Bush. Would you rather than the security of the United States of America entrusted to a guy with three Purple Hearts and a Bronze Star, a Silver Star, or a guy who served his time in the Alabama National Guard, sort of?

    HANNITY: I like National Guard service. I don't diminish it.

    DEAN: I think it's great, but...

    HANNITY: John Kerry -- When Reagan was winning the Cold War, John Kerry wanted a nuclear freeze. He was on the wrong side of history.

    John Kerry didn't support the death penalty for terrorists who killed Americans.

    DEAN: He actually does.

    HANNITY: Well, he didn't in 1989 when he had a chance to vote on it. He flip-flopped.

    DEAN: An expert on his record I'm not.

    HANNITY: Let me put up on the screen...

    DEAN: Here we go, here we go.

    HANNITY: Let me put up on the screen the words of Howard Dean about John Kerry. Here's what you said about him.

    You said, "He's going to have a hard time if he's the nominee. I think electability's a real issue for him. He appears to change his mind so often."

    Then you said, "He has this pattern. You saw it with No Child Left Behind. You saw it with the war. You see it with special interests, which I think is terribly damaging. It appears that his word is no good."

    And one more: "I think John Kerry is clearly not the best person to carry the banner of the Democrats in this race. He's behaved so much like Republicans, both in his voting record and now in his political practices for fundraising.

    Those are harsh words.

    DEAN: So Sean, you must think I come from the far left if I'm complaining that John's too much like a Republican.

    The problem with this media stuff is it's very selective. I didn't see you putting anything up of the comment that I said about George Bush.

    HANNITY: No, not at all. But you're now supporting the man that you said...

    DEAN: I'm supporting John Kerry, because I think he's going to be a much better president than George Bush.

    And you're going to find that out as of January 20 of 2005.

    HANNITY: But you accurately did point out something about him. He's had multiple positions on Iraq, No Child Left Behind, the death penalty for terrorists, weapons systems. I voted for the $87 billion before I voted against it.

    He brags about owning SUV's, and then on Earth Day he denies them, and then he has to explain my family owns them.

    What about sending all his people out to tout all the programs that he's supported, right, and he tried to cut them out of the budget?

    COLMES: You know, the amazing thing is, you can look at anybody's record and say, look what President Bush said before September 11.

    Look what he was saying about the nation building. Look what he was saying about the 9/11 commission, which now he's supposedly happily participating in.

    We can go in anybody's record. They misrepresented you.

    DEAN: How about the $30 million the president is bragging about handing out, when he tried to cut it out of the budget? This is ridiculous.

    COLMES: Let me ask you, do you view John Kerry differently now than you did when you were running against him?

    DEAN: I actually do, some. I've gotten to know him as a person. You know, when you're fighting with somebody for the nomination for the president of the United States, I'm a tough competitor. So is John Kerry.

    COLMES: I think we found that out.

    DEAN: It's going to be a knock down, drag out. But my assessment is one of two people is going to be president of the United States, John Kerry or George Bush.

    I go with the guy who's going to balance the budget, because I hate half-trillion deficits. I go with the guy who has a real environmental record instead of a phony one.

    COLMES: But I want to know how you view differently, now, than you did when were his competitor.

    DEAN: I think he's got a great shot at beating George Bush. He's a tough closer. You know, people say, well, Howard Dean was the frontrunner and he lost. The truth is John Kerry won, and I think -- we want to keep...

    COLMES: Do you look at this and say, you know, "that could be me," and "Boy, I really wish this were me"?

    DEAN: Sure. Of course I do. You don't run for president without hoping that you're going to win.

    COLMES: Or is it whew, I'm glad I'm not doing that now?

    DEAN: No. I mean...

    HANNITY: Where would you rather be? Still fighting?

    COLMES: If you're saying he were not the nominee he would not be on HANNITY & COLMES? But I mean, do you say there but for the grace of God go I, or is it boy, "I really want to be that person"?

    DEAN: Of course, I would have liked to have been the nominee, but I'm not the nominee. And so now the question is what's best for the country.

    In my assessment -- I'm sure Sean would not agree -- but in my assessment, John Kerry will be a great president.

    We're in deep trouble. We cannot run half-trillion-dollar deficits every single year for the next four years. We cannot continue to be bogged down in this quagmire of Iraq when the president, in fact, was not truthful about why we went to Iraq.

    We can't do those kinds of things, and I don't think John Kerry will do those kinds of things as president.

    COLMES: Are you convincing your people, the people who -- the legions of people who supported you, are you now then trying to sway them over to John Kerry? And what kind of an argument -- is that a difficult argument to make?

    DEAN: The argument -- I never say, oh, I disagree with John Kerry now, and now he's perfect. I don't ever say that.

    I said, "Look, John Kerry and I had our disagreements. But the truth is there are one of two people who are going to be president of the United States."

    And in terms of all the people who supported me, their positions on most issues, including all the moderate Republicans who supported me, are much closer to John Kerry's positions than they are to George Bush's positions.

    HANNITY: We'll take a break. We'll have more with Governor Dean on the other side of the break.

    And then, could New York City have done more to protect its citizens from the terrorist attack of 9/11?

    Rudy Giuliani, former mayor of New York, he testified before the 9/11 commission today. He will check in, and he will join us.

    That's coming up straight ahead.

    (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

    COLMES: Welcome back to HANNITY & COLMES. I'm Alan Colmes.

    Coming up, should former Mayor Rudy Giuliani have had to defend the city's police and firemen in today's 9/11 hearing? Rudy Giuliani will be here.

    It's been a major cheap shot by a conservative group, a new pro-Bush ad goes way too far. We'll tell you all about it.

    First, we continue with former presidential candidate Howard Dean.

    DEAN: I'm really glad this show is not too partisan.

    COLMES: That's good. Maybe you'll fill in for me one time.

    DEAN: There you go.

    COLMES: Would you want to do TV?

    DEAN: I don't know about that, we'll see.

    COLMES: I mean, if a good deal came along? There were kind of rumors about that at one point.

    DEAN: Actually, I've got my hands full right now. We started this new group called Democracy for America.

    And we had quite a few hundred -- hundreds of thousands of people following us during the campaign. We want to keep those people energized. Those are, for the most part, young people part and people who had been disillusioned with politics. And we've got to keep them involved.

    COLMES: You came with -- they came with Dean's dozen, I guess. People like Jeff Smith from Missouri.

    DEAN: Yes.

    COLMES: Lori Saldana, state assembly in California. How does one get on the Dean list?

    DEAN: Well, we have a grass roots process. You get nominated by -- We still have 350 Dean meet ups going on around the country and we still maintain a very active web site, Democracy for America.

    COLMES: What does a candidate do to qualify to be -- get the Dean seal of approval?

    DEAN: Well, they have to have all the -- you know, they have to adhere to positions that Sean would really like a lot, like, you know, universal healthcare for people, strong environmental protection and things of that sort.

    COLMES: What about the Nader...

    DEAN: And fiscal responsibility.

    COLMES: Let me ask you about Ralph Nader. Are you working with John Kerry in an attempt at all to get Nader to throw his support to the Democratic nominee?

    DEAN: I don't believe, having spoken with Ralph Nader, that he is going to drop out of the race. I am trying to convince people that a vote for Ralph Nader is the same as a vote for George Bush.

    Ralph Nader has got a long history of consumers and environmentalism, but he is most likely right now to be helping George Bush get re-elected, and I don't think that's a good thing.

    COLMES: He's polling at six percent, according to some polls, more than he did last time.

    DEAN: Right.

    COLMES: What do you think it takes -- what does John Kerry need to do, what do the Democrats need to do to neutralize the Nader vote?

    DEAN: We just need to make the case in a straightforward way. A lot of the people who followed me -- I had a spectrum of moderate Republicans who were really worried about the deficit and the war, all the way to Nader folks and Green folks and a lot of Democrats in between.

    And what we need to do is have that -- build that broad coalition of people who are fiscally responsible but socially more centrist.

    HANNITY: Governor, let me ask you this. Who, one year ago said the following things: that Saddam's weapons of mass destruction are a threat and we need to disarm him? Who said leaving Saddam unfettered with nuclear weapons or WMD's is unacceptable?

    Who said, "If you don't believe he's a threat with nuclear weapons don't vote for me"? And who said, "We need to disarm him. He's a brutal, murderous dictator, and Iraq's WMD's pose a great threat to the USA."

    Who said...

    DEAN: I don't know, who said that? You tell me.

    HANNITY: Just take a guess.

    DEAN: No.

    HANNITY: John Kerry one year ago. One year ago. Look where John Kerry is today. Look at John Kerry. I mean, he's taken -- I think actually, you're responsible for making him take positions he probably didn't want to take.

    DEAN: I don't agree with that. I think John Kerry's position is a pretty responsible position. Look, you criticized me in your book, which you kindly gave me.

    HANNITY: I gave him a copy. That's right.

    DEAN: You criticized me for saying that we're not any safer since Saddam has been captured. Since that time 500 American -- brave American soldiers have lost their lives.

    HANNITY: I still think we're safer, though. You don't think we're safer, the world's better off?

    DEAN: Five hundred more Americans are dead and 200 more Spaniards are dead. I don't think we're any safer.

    Secondly, you criticized me for attacking the president for not telling the truth. Well, where are the weapons of mass destruction? Where are the nuclear weapons? Where's the uranium we were going to get from Niger?

    HANNITY: Why don't you ask John Kerry? John Kerry a year ago said we had all those things. Bill Clinton said that he had those things. The U.N. said that he had all those things. Here's my point, though.

    DEAN: The U.N. didn't say that al Qaeda and Saddam were in league. That was said by Dick Cheney and George Bush, and it turned out not to be true. We ought not to go to war without telling the truth to the American people about why we're there.

    HANNITY: Well, then John Kerry laid out the same case one year before the war, in 2003, leading up to the war.

    DEAN: The issue is the president of the United States' credibility. It's not what John Kerry said a year ago.

    HANNITY: John Kerry said the same thing. You're voting for him, and he laid out the same case as the president.

    DEAN: The president is responsible for sending troops abroad. If John Kerry becomes president, which I have every intention of helping him do, he's going to have to make -- someday make the tough decision about whether the troops are brought back.

    The difference between John Kerry and George Bush is I believe that John Kerry will tell the truth to the American people about why those troops had to go abroad.

    HANNITY: Governor, the two things I most disagreed with you on is the statement that you just said, "We're not any safer." I believe the world is safer.

    And when you advance that theory that George Bush might have been warned about 9/11 ahead of time...

    DEAN: I never...

    HANNITY: Well, you said it's an interesting theory.

    DEAN: Right, it's an interesting theory.

    HANNITY: Was that irresponsible, in retrospect?

    DEAN: Somebody brought that theory up, and I said I didn't personally believe it.

    HANNITY: But you repeated it. Why would you repeat it?

    DEAN: Well, look at all the things the conservative crackpots repeat all the time.

    COLMES: We've got to go. But I want to ask you -- you say -- Governor, in case you ever get that television job...

    DEAN: Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reilly.

    COLMES: In case you ever get the television job, I want to give you a chance to do my outgoing read. So go ahead. Look at the teleprompter.

    DEAN: All right.

    COLMES: This could be a break for you. Go ahead.

    DEAN: If I get a talk show, it's going to be called -- because Alan is not defending liberals hard enough. It's going to be called "HANNITY & DEAN."

    Coming up next, Rudy Giuliani passionately defends New York City's finest at the 9/11 hearings today. He'll join us.

    And then are Bush supporters exploiting the events of September 11, the support to help the president stay in the White House. We will bring you the "Cheap Shot of the Day."

    Posted by Eric at 11:01 AM | Comments (6)

    Conservative Blames Gays for Prison Abuse

    Robert Knight of the Culture & Family Institute places the blame on the usual suspects, reports the Washington Blade:

    A conservative leader has pinned blame for the abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib and the subsequent beheading of businessman Nick Berg on gays getting married and serving in the military, among other acts of American “decadence.” ...
    Writing for WorldNetDaily.com, a site for religious conservatives, Robert Knight of the Culture & Family Institute said the United States has arrived at the “perfect storm” of cultural depravity, which has come to a “deadly nexus in Iraq.”

    He specifically targeted the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, the recent enactment of gay marriage and the promotion of homosexuality in schools as policies that are putting Americans all over the world at risk for terrorism, along with the presence of women in combat roles in the military ... Knight also blamed increasing tolerance toward gays in his column about the Iraqi prison abuse and Muslim hatred of the U.S.

    Posted by Eric at 10:50 AM | Comments (13)

    Conservative Blames Gays for Prison Abuse

    Robert Knight of the Culture & Family Institute places the blame on the usual suspects, reports the Washington Blade:

    A conservative leader has pinned blame for the abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib and the subsequent beheading of businessman Nick Berg on gays getting married and serving in the military, among other acts of American “decadence.” ...
    Writing for WorldNetDaily.com, a site for religious conservatives, Robert Knight of the Culture & Family Institute said the United States has arrived at the “perfect storm” of cultural depravity, which has come to a “deadly nexus in Iraq.”

    He specifically targeted the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, the recent enactment of gay marriage and the promotion of homosexuality in schools as policies that are putting Americans all over the world at risk for terrorism, along with the presence of women in combat roles in the military ... Knight also blamed increasing tolerance toward gays in his column about the Iraqi prison abuse and Muslim hatred of the U.S.

    Posted by Eric at 10:50 AM | Comments (7)

    Fox Continues Cable News Lead

    From the WSJ:

    However, Fox News is complaining that their ad sales aren't up to par with CNN:

    Since Fox News sold its ads for extremely low prices during its early years, and can boost them only incrementally each year, it must negotiate from a lower starting point than CNN. Similarly, CNN is negotiating from the high prices it established during its heyday as the only 24-hour news channel. Although Mr. Rittenberg has whittled down the price gap tremendously, he admits he hasn't been able to close it altogether. He says he hopes to reach parity during this year's upfront negotiations.

    Fox News's difficulty also shows how long it takes to build a brand on television, particularly in the cluttered landscape of cable television. In its eight years on the air, Fox News has cultivated a well-known name in the U.S. But, for some advertisers, that's hardly a match for CNN's world-wide name recognition, nurtured over 24 years in the business.

    Posted by Eric at 10:44 AM | Comments (7)

    Fox Continues Cable News Lead

    From the WSJ:

    However, Fox News is complaining that their ad sales aren't up to par with CNN:

    Since Fox News sold its ads for extremely low prices during its early years, and can boost them only incrementally each year, it must negotiate from a lower starting point than CNN. Similarly, CNN is negotiating from the high prices it established during its heyday as the only 24-hour news channel. Although Mr. Rittenberg has whittled down the price gap tremendously, he admits he hasn't been able to close it altogether. He says he hopes to reach parity during this year's upfront negotiations.

    Fox News's difficulty also shows how long it takes to build a brand on television, particularly in the cluttered landscape of cable television. In its eight years on the air, Fox News has cultivated a well-known name in the U.S. But, for some advertisers, that's hardly a match for CNN's world-wide name recognition, nurtured over 24 years in the business.

    Posted by Eric at 10:44 AM | Comments (3)

    Hamster Numbers: Crack/Cocaine Disparity

    From the Drug Policy Alliance:

    Pharmacologically the same drug, crack and powder cocaine are treated very differently within the walls of our justice system. Current policy generates a 100 to 1 penalty ratio for crack-related offenses. For instance, possession of only 5 grams of crack-cocaine yields a 5 year mandatory minimum sentence, however it takes 500 grams of powder cocaine to prompt the same sentence. Moreover, crack-cocaine is the only drug for which the first offense of simple possession can trigger a federal mandatory minimum sentence. Yet "simple possession of any quantity of any other substance by a first time offender - including powder cocaine - is a misdemeanor offense punishable by a maximum of one year in prison." (21 U.S.C. 844) i

    Posted by Eric at 10:28 AM | Comments (17)

    Hamster Numbers: Crack/Cocaine Disparity

    From the Drug Policy Alliance:

    Pharmacologically the same drug, crack and powder cocaine are treated very differently within the walls of our justice system. Current policy generates a 100 to 1 penalty ratio for crack-related offenses. For instance, possession of only 5 grams of crack-cocaine yields a 5 year mandatory minimum sentence, however it takes 500 grams of powder cocaine to prompt the same sentence. Moreover, crack-cocaine is the only drug for which the first offense of simple possession can trigger a federal mandatory minimum sentence. Yet "simple possession of any quantity of any other substance by a first time offender - including powder cocaine - is a misdemeanor offense punishable by a maximum of one year in prison." (21 U.S.C. 844) i

    Posted by Eric at 10:28 AM | Comments (3)

    Say Hi

    To new Hamster supporter "Coalition For America," which aims to take the pulse of America by "conducting this survey to determine where you stand on key campaign issues, whether John Kerry represents your views, and if not, how he could refine his positions on the issues to gain your support." Give them your input today.

    Posted by Eric at 10:19 AM | Comments (15)

    Say Hi

    To new Hamster supporter "Coalition For America," which aims to take the pulse of America by "conducting this survey to determine where you stand on key campaign issues, whether John Kerry represents your views, and if not, how he could refine his positions on the issues to gain your support." Give them your input today.

    Posted by Eric at 10:19 AM | Comments (4)

    Weird

    An Asian guy and an Indian guy headlining a studio movie. Never thought I'd see that day come - And no karate!

    Posted by Eric at 10:14 AM | Comments (18)

    Weird

    An Asian guy and an Indian guy headlining a studio movie. Never thought I'd see that day come - And no karate!

    Posted by Eric at 10:14 AM | Comments (3)

    Kerry Leads in Quinnipiac Poll

    By a slim margin, however:

    Forty-six percent of the respondents support Kerry, 43 percent back Bush, and 5 percent would vote for independent candidate Ralph Nader. The poll, released yesterday, has a sampling error margin of plus or minus three percentage points. Among independent voters polled, Kerry and Bush are about even. The telephone survey of more than 1,100 registered voters was conducted May 10-16.
    Kerry also has a slight lead in New Jersey.

    Posted by Eric at 10:03 AM | Comments (6)

    Kerry Leads in Quinnipiac Poll

    By a slim margin, however:

    Forty-six percent of the respondents support Kerry, 43 percent back Bush, and 5 percent would vote for independent candidate Ralph Nader. The poll, released yesterday, has a sampling error margin of plus or minus three percentage points. Among independent voters polled, Kerry and Bush are about even. The telephone survey of more than 1,100 registered voters was conducted May 10-16.
    Kerry also has a slight lead in New Jersey.

    Posted by Eric at 10:03 AM | Comments (2)

    Erskine Bowles Takes Double Digit Lead in NC

    From the Winston Salem-Journal, "Erskine Bowles holds a 10 percentage-point lead over Republican Richard Burr in North Carolina's U.S. Senate race, according to a statewide poll":

    The statewide poll of 625 likely voters found that 45 percent currently support Bowles, 35 percent support Burr and 20 percent are undecided. The survey had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

    The poll by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research Inc. found that 86 percent of voters said they recognize Bowles - a residual effect from his unsuccessful U.S. Senate race against Elizabeth Dole in 2002 -- while just 55 percent recognize Burr, who has represented the 5thDistrict in Congress since 1995.

    Despite Bowles' early status as the front-runner, J. Bradford Coker, the managing director of Mason-Dixon, said that the race could be very close.

    "When you have roughly a 30-point advantage in name recognition and you have only a 10-point lead, that lead isn't super-solid," Coker said. "It's a competitive race.

    Would Burr be an independent-minded Senator if elected? Probably not: "And Burr is tied closely to the Bush administration, getting help with his campaign from Cheney and White House adviser Karl Rove."

    Erskine's website is here.

    Posted by Eric at 10:02 AM | Comments (79)

    Erskine Bowles Takes Double Digit Lead in NC

    From the Winston Salem-Journal, "Erskine Bowles holds a 10 percentage-point lead over Republican Richard Burr in North Carolina's U.S. Senate race, according to a statewide poll":

    The statewide poll of 625 likely voters found that 45 percent currently support Bowles, 35 percent support Burr and 20 percent are undecided. The survey had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

    The poll by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research Inc. found that 86 percent of voters said they recognize Bowles - a residual effect from his unsuccessful U.S. Senate race against Elizabeth Dole in 2002 -- while just 55 percent recognize Burr, who has represented the 5thDistrict in Congress since 1995.

    Despite Bowles' early status as the front-runner, J. Bradford Coker, the managing director of Mason-Dixon, said that the race could be very close.

    "When you have roughly a 30-point advantage in name recognition and you have only a 10-point lead, that lead isn't super-solid," Coker said. "It's a competitive race.

    Would Burr be an independent-minded Senator if elected? Probably not: "And Burr is tied closely to the Bush administration, getting help with his campaign from Cheney and White House adviser Karl Rove."

    Erskine's website is here.

    Posted by Eric at 10:02 AM | Comments (0)

    Bush: Iraq Violence May Get Worse

    As noted in the LATimes, Bush had a meeting with Republicans where he warned that Iraq may get worse:

    Bush also warned lawmakers that violence in Iraq could get worse as June 30 nears.

    "This has been a rough couple of months for the president, particularly on the issues of Iraq, and I think he was here to remind folks that we do have a policy and this policy is going to be tough," said Santorum. "Things, as I think he commented, are very likely to get worse before they get better."

    Posted by Eric at 09:48 AM | Comments (1)

    Bush: Iraq Violence May Get Worse

    As noted in the LATimes, Bush had a meeting with Republicans where he warned that Iraq may get worse:

    Bush also warned lawmakers that violence in Iraq could get worse as June 30 nears.

    "This has been a rough couple of months for the president, particularly on the issues of Iraq, and I think he was here to remind folks that we do have a policy and this policy is going to be tough," said Santorum. "Things, as I think he commented, are very likely to get worse before they get better."

    Posted by Eric at 09:48 AM | Comments (3)

    May 20, 2004

    Thursday Stories

    News
    Guardian. New photos show Abu Ghraib abuse
    AP. Judge throws out ship-boarding charges against Greenpeace
    AP. Victims' Families Condemn Sept. 11 Panel
    UK Indy. Michael Howard's message to Blair: Time to stand up to Bush
    KRidder. Army may send special reserves to active duty involuntarily
    NYT. Democrats Criticize Denial of Communion by Bishops
    NYT. 2 Generals Outline Lag in Notification on Abuse Reports
    NYT. Losing Its Nonchalance, France Feuds Over Gay Vows
    NYT. Ruling Says White House's Medicare Videos Were Illegal
    AP. GOP Pushes $2.4T Budget Through House
    WP. Kerry, Nader Meet and Go Separate Ways; Democrats Want To Diminish Man They Call Spoiler
    WP. Bush to Detail Transition Monday in First of Several Iraq Speeches
    AP. Abortion-Rights Supporters Stick by Kerry
    AP. Bush Won't Tap Into Petroleum Reserve
    AP. Bush Daughters Enjoy Relative Anonymity
    Reuters. U.S. Troops Raid Chalabi's Headquarters in Baghdad
    Copley. Nader says his candidacy will advance Kerry's cause
    BGlobe. Mrs. Bush welcomes gay-issues debate: Won't endorse amendment effort
    CSM. Military denies pattern
    CSM. Darwinian shift: survival of the smallest

    Commentary
    Garance Franke-Ruta. McCainiacs: John McCain doesn’t have to join anybody’s administration in order to be useful to the Democrats
    Alyson Flournoy. Dangerous Illusions about Wetlands
    Dave Gilson. America's laziest fascist: Infamous shock jock Michael Savage bombed in a bizarre, half-baked stage show this week, but his 6 million listeners just heard him call for the U.S. to murder millions of Arabs. Does the FCC care?
    Robert Schlesinger. The imperial Pentagon: Rumsfeld and his minions are treating Congress as if it's on a need-to-know basis about Iraq -- from the number of private contractors there to how taxpayers' money is being spent to our military strategy
    Sean Aday. It's the RDI, Stupid! Why Americans still give Bush poor marks on the economy
    Thomas Schaller. Republican Drug Habits: Two GOP governors submit the FDA to a drug test
    John Nichols. Bishops vs. Kerry
    Howard Dean. The Good Doctor Speaks
    Seattle Weekly. www.bigbrother.gov: The feds want to know who’s been visiting the Web site of voting watchdog Bev Harris, and they’re likely to get what they want
    Alan Bisbort. The Un-Civilization
    Julian Borger. Hostilities force Bush into deep hole
    Sidney Blumenthal. The religious warrior of Abu Ghraib
    James Klurfeld. Bush is running out of time in Iraq
    Andrew Zimbalist. Bush panders for votes while hurting Cubans
    Marie Cocco. We are not ready for the next attack
    SFC. Our unjust drug law
    CSM. How gas prices figure into 'big picture' politics
    The Progressive. Interview: Howard Dean

    Posted by Eric at 11:56 PM | Comments (2)

    Thursday Stories

    News
    Guardian. New photos show Abu Ghraib abuse
    AP. Judge throws out ship-boarding charges against Greenpeace
    AP. Victims' Families Condemn Sept. 11 Panel
    UK Indy. Michael Howard's message to Blair: Time to stand up to Bush
    KRidder. Army may send special reserves to active duty involuntarily
    NYT. Democrats Criticize Denial of Communion by Bishops
    NYT. 2 Generals Outline Lag in Notification on Abuse Reports
    NYT. Losing Its Nonchalance, France Feuds Over Gay Vows
    NYT. Ruling Says White House's Medicare Videos Were Illegal
    AP. GOP Pushes $2.4T Budget Through House
    WP. Kerry, Nader Meet and Go Separate Ways; Democrats Want To Diminish Man They Call Spoiler
    WP. Bush to Detail Transition Monday in First of Several Iraq Speeches
    AP. Abortion-Rights Supporters Stick by Kerry
    AP. Bush Won't Tap Into Petroleum Reserve
    AP. Bush Daughters Enjoy Relative Anonymity
    Reuters. U.S. Troops Raid Chalabi's Headquarters in Baghdad
    Copley. Nader says his candidacy will advance Kerry's cause
    BGlobe. Mrs. Bush welcomes gay-issues debate: Won't endorse amendment effort
    CSM. Military denies pattern
    CSM. Darwinian shift: survival of the smallest

    Commentary
    Garance Franke-Ruta. McCainiacs: John McCain doesn’t have to join anybody’s administration in order to be useful to the Democrats
    Alyson Flournoy. Dangerous Illusions about Wetlands
    Dave Gilson. America's laziest fascist: Infamous shock jock Michael Savage bombed in a bizarre, half-baked stage show this week, but his 6 million listeners just heard him call for the U.S. to murder millions of Arabs. Does the FCC care?
    Robert Schlesinger. The imperial Pentagon: Rumsfeld and his minions are treating Congress as if it's on a need-to-know basis about Iraq -- from the number of private contractors there to how taxpayers' money is being spent to our military strategy
    Sean Aday. It's the RDI, Stupid! Why Americans still give Bush poor marks on the economy
    Thomas Schaller. Republican Drug Habits: Two GOP governors submit the FDA to a drug test
    John Nichols. Bishops vs. Kerry
    Howard Dean. The Good Doctor Speaks
    Seattle Weekly. www.bigbrother.gov: The feds want to know who’s been visiting the Web site of voting watchdog Bev Harris, and they’re likely to get what they want
    Alan Bisbort. The Un-Civilization
    Julian Borger. Hostilities force Bush into deep hole
    Sidney Blumenthal. The religious warrior of Abu Ghraib
    James Klurfeld. Bush is running out of time in Iraq
    Andrew Zimbalist. Bush panders for votes while hurting Cubans
    Marie Cocco. We are not ready for the next attack
    SFC. Our unjust drug law
    CSM. How gas prices figure into 'big picture' politics
    The Progressive. Interview: Howard Dean

    Posted by Eric at 11:56 PM | Comments (1)

    Rock Against Bush CD Continues Strong Sales

    Rock Against Bush, from PunkVoter.com, continues to sell well, according to the "Independent Albums" category of Billboard Magazine.

    For issue date May 29, 2004, Rock Against Bush Vol 1 is at #4. It's peak position was #1. At #6? William Hung!

    Volume 1 features such popular young bands as: Sum 41, Alkaline Trio, the Offspring, Ministry, the Ataris and New Found Glory.

    Volume 2, coming out in August before the November election, features even more popular bands: No Doubt, the Foo Fighters, Green Day, Bad Religion, the Used, Yellowcard and Flogging Molly, among others.

    Posted by Eric at 09:15 PM | Comments (21)

    Rock Against Bush CD Continues Strong Sales

    Rock Against Bush, from PunkVoter.com, continues to sell well, according to the "Independent Albums" category of Billboard Magazine.

    For issue date May 29, 2004, Rock Against Bush Vol 1 is at #4. It's peak position was #1. At #6? William Hung!

    Volume 1 features such popular young bands as: Sum 41, Alkaline Trio, the Offspring, Ministry, the Ataris and New Found Glory.

    Volume 2, coming out in August before the November election, features even more popular bands: No Doubt, the Foo Fighters, Green Day, Bad Religion, the Used, Yellowcard and Flogging Molly, among others.

    Posted by Eric at 09:15 PM | Comments (5)

    Bill O'Reilly and the Conspiracy Theorist

    While O'Reilly works under the premise of a respectable show "looking out for you", he recently hosted conspiracy theorist Richard Poe, then proceeded to give him journalistic respect. Media Matters on why this is laughable.

    Hillary Clinton murdered Brit Hume's son? "Starr actively helped to suppress and whitewash evidence of Clinton wrongdoing."? The Clintons lead a mafia? How embarrassing.

    Posted by Eric at 07:19 PM | Comments (2)

    Bill O'Reilly and the Conspiracy Theorist

    While O'Reilly works under the premise of a respectable show "looking out for you", he recently hosted conspiracy theorist Richard Poe, then proceeded to give him journalistic respect. Media Matters on why this is laughable.

    Hillary Clinton murdered Brit Hume's son? "Starr actively helped to suppress and whitewash evidence of Clinton wrongdoing."? The Clintons lead a mafia? How embarrassing.

    Posted by Eric at 07:19 PM | Comments (1)

    The President Unpopular with Minorities

    Terry Neal in the Washington Post about Bush's poor standing with minorities:

    President Bush's campaign advisers sat down and crunched some numbers after the 2000 election and hypothesized that, because of the growth of minority populations, if whites and non-whites voted in the same proportions they did in the 2000 election, Democrats would win the White House by about three million votes in 2004.
    Why's that?
    This week, Cornell Belcher, a black pollster based in Washington, D.C., who works for several progressive organizations, shared some startling numbers with me. He has been doing monthly polling in six key battleground states -- Ohio, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Florida, Michigan and Nevada. Even as white voters nationwide have been moving toward negative feelings about the war, black voters have taken those feelings and supersized them.

    Seventy-three percent of African Americans in those states disagree that the war in Iraq is worth the U.S. casualties there because the country is safer. Sixty-three percent agree that America should cut its losses and pull out of Iraq right now.

    And here's the real kicker. On the question of whether Bush intentionally misled the country, 77 percent agree at least somewhat.

    In other words, distrust of the Right. And heck, why wouldn't you distrust the Right when the most trusted conservative commentator has a problem with color, and the President has this condescending section of his webpage.

    Posted by Eric at 06:04 PM | Comments (8)

    The President Unpopular with Minorities

    Terry Neal in the Washington Post about Bush's poor standing with minorities:

    President Bush's campaign advisers sat down and crunched some numbers after the 2000 election and hypothesized that, because of the growth of minority populations, if whites and non-whites voted in the same proportions they did in the 2000 election, Democrats would win the White House by about three million votes in 2004.
    Why's that?
    This week, Cornell Belcher, a black pollster based in Washington, D.C., who works for several progressive organizations, shared some startling numbers with me. He has been doing monthly polling in six key battleground states -- Ohio, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Florida, Michigan and Nevada. Even as white voters nationwide have been moving toward negative feelings about the war, black voters have taken those feelings and supersized them.

    Seventy-three percent of African Americans in those states disagree that the war in Iraq is worth the U.S. casualties there because the country is safer. Sixty-three percent agree that America should cut its losses and pull out of Iraq right now.

    And here's the real kicker. On the question of whether Bush intentionally misled the country, 77 percent agree at least somewhat.

    In other words, distrust of the Right. And heck, why wouldn't you distrust the Right when the most trusted conservative commentator has a problem with color, and the President has this condescending section of his webpage.

    Posted by Eric at 06:04 PM | Comments (2)

    Historians Agree: Bush Presidency Crap

    According to a "recent informal, unscientific survey of historians conducted at my suggestion by George Mason University’s History News Network found that eight in ten historians responding rate the current presidency an overall failure." From HNN.us, link via Skippy the Bush Kangaroo.

    Of 415 historians who expressed a view of President Bush’s administration to this point as a success or failure, 338 classified it as a failure and 77 as a success. (Moreover, it seems likely that at least eight of those who said it is a success were being sarcastic, since seven said Bush’s presidency is only the best since Clinton’s and one named Millard Fillmore.) Twelve percent of all the historians who responded rate the current presidency the worst in all of American history, not too far behind the 19 percent who see it at this point as an overall success

    Posted by Eric at 02:20 PM | Comments (2)

    Historians Agree: Bush Presidency Crap

    According to a "recent informal, unscientific survey of historians conducted at my suggestion by George Mason University’s History News Network found that eight in ten historians responding rate the current presidency an overall failure." From HNN.us, link via Skippy the Bush Kangaroo.

    Of 415 historians who expressed a view of President Bush’s administration to this point as a success or failure, 338 classified it as a failure and 77 as a success. (Moreover, it seems likely that at least eight of those who said it is a success were being sarcastic, since seven said Bush’s presidency is only the best since Clinton’s and one named Millard Fillmore.) Twelve percent of all the historians who responded rate the current presidency the worst in all of American history, not too far behind the 19 percent who see it at this point as an overall success

    Posted by Eric at 02:20 PM | Comments (0)

    MoveOn.org Wants Help in Airing Fire Rummy Ad

    Moveon.org is launching a campaign to fire Rummy, and is asking activists to help "put this new TV ad on the air, calling on President Bush to fire Donald Rumsfeld from his post as Secretary of Defense." The ad text:

    THE CAMERA IS MOVING AROUND THE BASE AND UP THE SIDE OF THE STATUE OF LIBERTY. WE SEE THAT THE STATUE HAS A HOOD OVER ITS HEAD. WE THEN SEE A PICTURE OF DONALD RUMSFELD AND PRESIDENT BUSH.

    [Audio: Announcer Voice-Over]

    They said we were going to Iraq to bring American values: democracy, liberty, justice. But something has gone terribly wrong.

    It's been reported that Donald Rumsfeld initiated a plan that encouraged the physical coercion and sexual humiliation of prisoners, violations of international law. Rumsfeld has placed the men and women under his command in even more danger.

    Why hasn't George Bush fired this man?

    Posted by Eric at 02:11 PM | Comments (2)

    MoveOn.org Wants Help in Airing Fire Rummy Ad

    Moveon.org is launching a campaign to fire Rummy, and is asking activists to help "put this new TV ad on the air, calling on President Bush to fire Donald Rumsfeld from his post as Secretary of Defense." The ad text:

    THE CAMERA IS MOVING AROUND THE BASE AND UP THE SIDE OF THE STATUE OF LIBERTY. WE SEE THAT THE STATUE HAS A HOOD OVER ITS HEAD. WE THEN SEE A PICTURE OF DONALD RUMSFELD AND PRESIDENT BUSH.

    [Audio: Announcer Voice-Over]

    They said we were going to Iraq to bring American values: democracy, liberty, justice. But something has gone terribly wrong.

    It's been reported that Donald Rumsfeld initiated a plan that encouraged the physical coercion and sexual humiliation of prisoners, violations of international law. Rumsfeld has placed the men and women under his command in even more danger.

    Why hasn't George Bush fired this man?

    Posted by Eric at 02:11 PM | Comments (19)

    Did GOP House Leaders Bribe Members for Votes?

    As reported by CAP, Common Cause has released a report (pdf) that shows "improprieties" by the House GOP leadership during the fight for the Medicare bill. To note, from CAP:

    Perhaps most disturbing: conservative leaders in the House held the vote on the Medicare bill open for 3 hours in the middle of the night while they pressured Rep. Nick Smith (R-MI) and others to switch their votes. Normally, votes in the House are open for 15 minutes. In a 11/23/03 column on his website Rep. Smith wrote, "members and groups made extensive financial campaign supports and endorsements for my son Brad who is running for my seat. They also made threats of working against Brad if I voted no." The following month on a radio interview, Smith said "the first offer was to give [my son Brad] $100,000-plus for his campaign and endorsement by national leadership." While Smith stuck to his principles, others did not, and the bill passed by one vote.

    Posted by Eric at 01:58 PM | Comments (231)

    Did GOP House Leaders Bribe Members for Votes?

    As reported by CAP, Common Cause has released a report (pdf) that shows "improprieties" by the House GOP leadership during the fight for the Medicare bill. To note, from CAP:

    Perhaps most disturbing: conservative leaders in the House held the vote on the Medicare bill open for 3 hours in the middle of the night while they pressured Rep. Nick Smith (R-MI) and others to switch their votes. Normally, votes in the House are open for 15 minutes. In a 11/23/03 column on his website Rep. Smith wrote, "members and groups made extensive financial campaign supports and endorsements for my son Brad who is running for my seat. They also made threats of working against Brad if I voted no." The following month on a radio interview, Smith said "the first offer was to give [my son Brad] $100,000-plus for his campaign and endorsement by national leadership." While Smith stuck to his principles, others did not, and the bill passed by one vote.

    Posted by Eric at 01:58 PM | Comments (2)

    Lying Liars

    Another edition of The Daily Grill, from The Center for American Progress:

    "The use of video news releases is a common, routine practice in government and the private sector. Anyone who has questions about this practice needs to do some research on modern public information tools."

    - Administration spokesman Kevin Keane, 3/14/04

    "The use of appropriated funds for production and distribution of the story packages and suggested scripts violated the publicity or propaganda prohibition of the Consolidated Appropriation Resolution of 2003."

    - General Accounting Office Ruling, 5/19/04

    Posted by Eric at 01:53 PM | Comments (18)

    Lying Liars

    Another edition of The Daily Grill, from The Center for American Progress:

    "The use of video news releases is a common, routine practice in government and the private sector. Anyone who has questions about this practice needs to do some research on modern public information tools."

    - Administration spokesman Kevin Keane, 3/14/04

    "The use of appropriated funds for production and distribution of the story packages and suggested scripts violated the publicity or propaganda prohibition of the Consolidated Appropriation Resolution of 2003."

    - General Accounting Office Ruling, 5/19/04

    Posted by Eric at 01:53 PM | Comments (0)

    The Nader Factor

    Friends don't let friends vote for Nader? Several websites are attempting to convert those that are flirting with the man with the spoiler plan.

    http://www.thenaderfactor.com/ - From the "National Progress Fund":

    Poll after poll after poll show one thing: Ralph Nader is once again becoming a deciding factor. It is time for us to stand together in defense of the issues we care about most.

    George Bush is dividing us. To counter this, we are building a new community of Nader supporters, progressive Democrats and others who understand what’s at stake and are uniting to take this country back from the right wing extremists

    The website also asks for your Nader '00 stories in the unique way: "Slept with Nader and woke up with Bush in '00?"

    Then there is also http://www.repentantnadervoter.com/

    Posted by Eric at 01:50 PM | Comments (8)

    The Nader Factor

    Friends don't let friends vote for Nader? Several websites are attempting to convert those that are flirting with the man with the spoiler plan.

    http://www.thenaderfactor.com/ - From the "National Progress Fund":

    Poll after poll after poll show one thing: Ralph Nader is once again becoming a deciding factor. It is time for us to stand together in defense of the issues we care about most.

    George Bush is dividing us. To counter this, we are building a new community of Nader supporters, progressive Democrats and others who understand what’s at stake and are uniting to take this country back from the right wing extremists

    The website also asks for your Nader '00 stories in the unique way: "Slept with Nader and woke up with Bush in '00?"

    Then there is also http://www.repentantnadervoter.com/

    Posted by Eric at 01:50 PM | Comments (0)

    The Unpopular President Continued

    Bush's unpopularity is prompting concern among some members of Congress, and dimming their reelection prospects. In The Hill:

    Republican members of Congress are growing increasingly concerned over President Bush’s sinking approval rating and the souring public mood over the war in Iraq.

    At the same time, many members say Bush’s poll numbers are also affecting them by coloring public opinion about the economy and other issues more directly linked to their own re-election prospects ...

    While most of the 20 House and Senate Republicans surveyed by The Hill as Congress prepared for the Memorial Day recess professed to be optimistic about the president’s public standing, many also hinted at anxieties.

    “Iraq has become a concern,” said Rep. Tom Feeney (Fla.). “It’s a picture that none of us see the end of.”

    Indeed, House Democrats are now more popular than ever: "But perhaps most alarming for Republicans, a Time/CNN poll conducted May 12 and 13 showed that respondents favored Democrats over Republicans on a generic congressional ballot by a margin of 13 points, 53 to 40 percent."

    Posted by Eric at 01:44 PM | Comments (0)

    The Unpopular President Continued

    Bush's unpopularity is prompting concern among some members of Congress, and dimming their reelection prospects. In The Hill:

    Republican members of Congress are growing increasingly concerned over President Bush’s sinking approval rating and the souring public mood over the war in Iraq.

    At the same time, many members say Bush’s poll numbers are also affecting them by coloring public opinion about the economy and other issues more directly linked to their own re-election prospects ...

    While most of the 20 House and Senate Republicans surveyed by The Hill as Congress prepared for the Memorial Day recess professed to be optimistic about the president’s public standing, many also hinted at anxieties.

    “Iraq has become a concern,” said Rep. Tom Feeney (Fla.). “It’s a picture that none of us see the end of.”

    Indeed, House Democrats are now more popular than ever: "But perhaps most alarming for Republicans, a Time/CNN poll conducted May 12 and 13 showed that respondents favored Democrats over Republicans on a generic congressional ballot by a margin of 13 points, 53 to 40 percent."

    Posted by Eric at 01:44 PM | Comments (0)

    Budget Deficit Not Addressed

    Congress has once again given the issue of the deficit the boot, reports the USA Today:

    Republicans who have struggled for two months to reconcile House and Senate versions of the 2005 federal budget announced an agreement Wednesday.
    But the compromise includes much weaker rules against red ink than the Senate approved, making it unclear whether the deal will get the support needed for passage when both chambers vote this week.

    Senate moderates said they would not vote for the compromise because it fails to curb the federal budget deficit, which is approaching a record $500 billion this year. That prompted criticism from Republican conservatives in the House of Representatives.

    Posted by Eric at 01:40 PM | Comments (0)

    Budget Deficit Not Addressed

    Congress has once again given the issue of the deficit the boot, reports the USA Today:

    Republicans who have struggled for two months to reconcile House and Senate versions of the 2005 federal budget announced an agreement Wednesday.
    But the compromise includes much weaker rules against red ink than the Senate approved, making it unclear whether the deal will get the support needed for passage when both chambers vote this week.

    Senate moderates said they would not vote for the compromise because it fails to curb the federal budget deficit, which is approaching a record $500 billion this year. That prompted criticism from Republican conservatives in the House of Representatives.

    Posted by Eric at 01:40 PM | Comments (4)

    The Wit and Wisdom of Richard Perle

    As compiled by Mother Jones:

    "Iraq is a very wealthy country. Enormous oil reserves. They can finance, largely finance, the reconstruction of their own country. And I have no doubt that they will."
    —PBS interview July 11, 2002

    "We are not talking about a massive invasion along the lines of 1991. We're talking about a much more modest effort in which the United States would assist Iraqis in freeing their country."
    —Washington Post interview, August 22, 2002

    "UN weapons inspectors are being seriously deceived…. It reminds me of the way the Nazis hoodwinked Red Cross officials inspecting the concentration camp at Theresienstadt in 1944. The SS even organized a phony concert to show what a wonderful new home the Jews had. But Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has MORE evidence of secret weapons dumps."
    —Writing in the News of the World, February 23, 2003

    "The predictions of those who opposed this war can be discarded like spent cartridges. You remember them? We will kill hundreds of thousands. We will create thousands of new terrorists. The Arab world will rise up and set the region aflame. Tony Blair and George Bush knew better."
    —Writing in the News of the World, April 13, 2003

    "Relax, celebrate victory."
    —Writing in USA Today, May 2, 2003

    Posted by Eric at 06:24 AM | Comments (38)

    The Wit and Wisdom of Richard Perle

    As compiled by Mother Jones:

    "Iraq is a very wealthy country. Enormous oil reserves. They can finance, largely finance, the reconstruction of their own country. And I have no doubt that they will."
    —PBS interview July 11, 2002

    "We are not talking about a massive invasion along the lines of 1991. We're talking about a much more modest effort in which the United States would assist Iraqis in freeing their country."
    —Washington Post interview, August 22, 2002

    "UN weapons inspectors are being seriously deceived…. It reminds me of the way the Nazis hoodwinked Red Cross officials inspecting the concentration camp at Theresienstadt in 1944. The SS even organized a phony concert to show what a wonderful new home the Jews had. But Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has MORE evidence of secret weapons dumps."
    —Writing in the News of the World, February 23, 2003

    "The predictions of those who opposed this war can be discarded like spent cartridges. You remember them? We will kill hundreds of thousands. We will create thousands of new terrorists. The Arab world will rise up and set the region aflame. Tony Blair and George Bush knew better."
    —Writing in the News of the World, April 13, 2003

    "Relax, celebrate victory."
    —Writing in USA Today, May 2, 2003

    Posted by Eric at 06:24 AM | Comments (8)

    Hastert Questions McCain's GOP Credentials

    House Speaker Dennis Hastert took a jab at Senator John McCain:

    The exchange started when a reporter asked: "Can I combine a two issues, Iraq and taxes? I heard a speech from John McCain the other day..."

    Hastert: "Who?"

    Reporter: "John McCain."

    Hastert: "Where's he from?"

    Reporter: "He's a Republican from Arizona."

    Hastert: "A Republican?"

    Amid nervous laughter, the reporter continued with his question: "Anyway, his observation was never before when we've been at war have we been worrying about cutting taxes and his question was, 'Where's the sacrifice?' "

    Hastert: "If you want to see the sacrifice, John McCain ought to visit our young men and women at Walter Reed and Bethesda. There's the sacrifice in this country. We're trying to make sure they have the ability to fight this war, that they have the wherewithal to be able to do it. And, at the same time, we have to react to keep this country strong."

    Denny Hastert lecturing John McCain on service. Ha.

    Posted by Eric at 04:23 AM | Comments (21)

    Hastert Questions McCain's GOP Credentials

    House Speaker Dennis Hastert took a jab at Senator John McCain:

    The exchange started when a reporter asked: "Can I combine a two issues, Iraq and taxes? I heard a speech from John McCain the other day..."

    Hastert: "Who?"

    Reporter: "John McCain."

    Hastert: "Where's he from?"

    Reporter: "He's a Republican from Arizona."

    Hastert: "A Republican?"

    Amid nervous laughter, the reporter continued with his question: "Anyway, his observation was never before when we've been at war have we been worrying about cutting taxes and his question was, 'Where's the sacrifice?' "

    Hastert: "If you want to see the sacrifice, John McCain ought to visit our young men and women at Walter Reed and Bethesda. There's the sacrifice in this country. We're trying to make sure they have the ability to fight this war, that they have the wherewithal to be able to do it. And, at the same time, we have to react to keep this country strong."

    Denny Hastert lecturing John McCain on service. Ha.

    Posted by Eric at 04:23 AM | Comments (5)

    May 19, 2004

    Wednesday Stories

    News
    WP. Violence Leaves Iraqis in Despair: Funeral Evokes Leaders' Anxiety About Transition
    Reuters. U.S. commission to hear from 9/11 officials
    WP. President, Senate Reach Pact On Judicial Nominations: Bush Vows He Won't Use Recess Appointments; 25 to Get Vote
    WP. In Oregon, Kerry Assails Bush on Gas Prices
    NYT. Governor Moves on Non-Massachusetts Couples
    NYT. White House Is Trumpeting Programs It Tried to Cut
    NYT. Officers Say U.S. Colonel at Abu Ghraib Prison Felt Intense Pressure to Get Inmates to Talk
    NYT. Officer Says Army Tried to Curb Red Cross Visits to Prison in Iraq
    AP. Wolfowitz says war planners underestimated Iraqi resilience
    AP. Kerry-Nader meeting unlikely to alter race
    BGlobe. Kerry revives '92 election theme to attack Bush
    AP. Giuliani to Testify Before 9/11 Panel
    AP. First Lady Stumps for President in Vegas
    AP. Sens. Bunning, Lincoln Win Nominations
    AP. Unlikely Visionary Plots Pentagon Future
    USAT. Longer airport lines likely this summer
    USAT. Fanfare over; gay marriages continue

    Commentary
    Rick Perlstein. The Jesus Landing Pad
    Harold Meyerson. Death of a Salesman
    Ray McGovern. Fire the creators of unwinnable war
    John Gray. Power and vainglory
    David Rieff. The End of Empire
    Howard Zinn. What Do We Do Now?
    Ellen Goodman. The freedom of commitment: Massachusetts gays give the flagging institution of marriage a much-needed shot in the arm
    Molly Ivins. Killing people for their own good: Time to cut our losses; time for the UN and NATO to take over Iraq
    Fred Kaplan. Locked in Abu Ghraib: The prison scandal keeps getting worse for the Bush administration
    Paul Zeitz. The AIDS Policy Decoy
    Eyal Press. Even Conservatives Are Wondering: Is Bush One of Us?
    Matt Bivens. $87 Billion in Debt
    Paul Savoy. The Moral Case Against the Iraq War
    Michelle Goldberg. The prisoner-abuse scandal at home: The stories sound familiar: Muslim prisoners beaten and sexually humiliated by American guards. But it happened in Brooklyn, not Baghdad
    Jonathan Evans. Service to Those Who Serve
    Matthew Yglesias. History Schmistory: Why history is a lousy guide when it comes to predicting presidential elections
    Jeffrey Dubner. Beyond Abu Ghraib: Some liberation -- in the last year, one in four Iraqis has seriously contemplated suicide
    Laura Rozen. Ye of Little Feith: Why one of Doug Feith's underlings thinks he might go to jail
    Barbara T. Dreyfuss. Seducing the AARP

    Posted by Eric at 11:44 PM | Comments (7)

    Wednesday Stories

    News
    WP. Violence Leaves Iraqis in Despair: Funeral Evokes Leaders' Anxiety About Transition
    Reuters. U.S. commission to hear from 9/11 officials
    WP. President, Senate Reach Pact On Judicial Nominations: Bush Vows He Won't Use Recess Appointments; 25 to Get Vote
    WP. In Oregon, Kerry Assails Bush on Gas Prices
    NYT. Governor Moves on Non-Massachusetts Couples
    NYT. White House Is Trumpeting Programs It Tried to Cut
    NYT. Officers Say U.S. Colonel at Abu Ghraib Prison Felt Intense Pressure to Get Inmates to Talk
    NYT. Officer Says Army Tried to Curb Red Cross Visits to Prison in Iraq
    AP. Wolfowitz says war planners underestimated Iraqi resilience
    AP. Kerry-Nader meeting unlikely to alter race
    BGlobe. Kerry revives '92 election theme to attack Bush
    AP. Giuliani to Testify Before 9/11 Panel
    AP. First Lady Stumps for President in Vegas
    AP. Sens. Bunning, Lincoln Win Nominations
    AP. Unlikely Visionary Plots Pentagon Future
    USAT. Longer airport lines likely this summer
    USAT. Fanfare over; gay marriages continue

    Commentary
    Rick Perlstein. The Jesus Landing Pad
    Harold Meyerson. Death of a Salesman
    Ray McGovern. Fire the creators of unwinnable war
    John Gray. Power and vainglory
    David Rieff. The End of Empire
    Howard Zinn. What Do We Do Now?
    Ellen Goodman. The freedom of commitment: Massachusetts gays give the flagging institution of marriage a much-needed shot in the arm
    Molly Ivins. Killing people for their own good: Time to cut our losses; time for the UN and NATO to take over Iraq
    Fred Kaplan. Locked in Abu Ghraib: The prison scandal keeps getting worse for the Bush administration
    Paul Zeitz. The AIDS Policy Decoy
    Eyal Press. Even Conservatives Are Wondering: Is Bush One of Us?
    Matt Bivens. $87 Billion in Debt
    Paul Savoy. The Moral Case Against the Iraq War
    Michelle Goldberg. The prisoner-abuse scandal at home: The stories sound familiar: Muslim prisoners beaten and sexually humiliated by American guards. But it happened in Brooklyn, not Baghdad
    Jonathan Evans. Service to Those Who Serve
    Matthew Yglesias. History Schmistory: Why history is a lousy guide when it comes to predicting presidential elections
    Jeffrey Dubner. Beyond Abu Ghraib: Some liberation -- in the last year, one in four Iraqis has seriously contemplated suicide
    Laura Rozen. Ye of Little Feith: Why one of Doug Feith's underlings thinks he might go to jail
    Barbara T. Dreyfuss. Seducing the AARP

    Posted by Eric at 11:44 PM | Comments (0)

    Some Call It Irony

    I call it being a douchebag. From the NY Times: "White House Is Trumpeting Programs It Tried to Cut."

    For example, Justice Department officials recently announced that they were awarding $47 million to scores of local law enforcement agencies for the hiring of police officers
    That's nice. A Clinton-era program which has hired thousands of cops.
    Mr. Bush had just proposed cutting the budget for the program, known as Community Oriented Policing Services, by 87 percent, to $97 million next year, from $756 million.
    OHT! Alright, well ...
    Tommy G. Thompson, the secretary of health and human services, announced recently that the administration was awarding $11.7 million in grants to help 30 states plan and provide coverage for people without health insurance.
    I guess that's a good thing, getting health insurance in case you, uh, get sick or something.
    Mr. Bush had proposed ending the program in each of the last three years.
    Oh. Well. Some could also say ...

    Posted by Eric at 07:33 PM | Comments (2)

    Some Call It Irony

    I call it being a douchebag. From the NY Times: "White House Is Trumpeting Programs It Tried to Cut."

    For example, Justice Department officials recently announced that they were awarding $47 million to scores of local law enforcement agencies for the hiring of police officers
    That's nice. A Clinton-era program which has hired thousands of cops.
    Mr. Bush had just proposed cutting the budget for the program, known as Community Oriented Policing Services, by 87 percent, to $97 million next year, from $756 million.
    OHT! Alright, well ...
    Tommy G. Thompson, the secretary of health and human services, announced recently that the administration was awarding $11.7 million in grants to help 30 states plan and provide coverage for people without health insurance.
    I guess that's a good thing, getting health insurance in case you, uh, get sick or something.
    Mr. Bush had proposed ending the program in each of the last three years.
    Oh. Well. Some could also say ...

    Posted by Eric at 07:33 PM | Comments (0)

    Edwards Would Put North Carolina in Play

    According to a WRAL/Mason-Dixon Poll:

    Statewide, Bush is supported by 48% of voters, while Kerry is backed by 41%, independent Ralph Nader draws 3% and 8% remain undecided. With Edwards as Kerry's running-mate, the GOP ticket of Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney is favored by 46%, the Kerry/Edwards Democratic ticket gets 45%, Nader draws 2% and 7% are undecided.

    Posted by Eric at 04:57 PM | Comments (6)

    Edwards Would Put North Carolina in Play

    According to a WRAL/Mason-Dixon Poll:

    Statewide, Bush is supported by 48% of voters, while Kerry is backed by 41%, independent Ralph Nader draws 3% and 8% remain undecided. With Edwards as Kerry's running-mate, the GOP ticket of Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney is favored by 46%, the Kerry/Edwards Democratic ticket gets 45%, Nader draws 2% and 7% are undecided.

    Posted by Eric at 04:57 PM | Comments (6)

    Rice to Leave by Year's End?

    Pleeeease, please, don't cry too many tears. If Bush wins, Rice won't stay, gossip some in the Washingtonian (link via Political Wire):

    A former Stanford provost, Rice has been telling pals that she’s returning to California even if Bush is reelected.

    “People who don’t believe she’s leaving don’t know Condi,” a friend says. “She’s outta here, and that was happening before the commission mess.”

    Sources in the Washingtonian also speculate that if Rice is nominated for a confirmation post, she may be "too controversial politically to ever get past a Senate confirmation hearing."

    Posted by Eric at 04:52 PM | Comments (13)

    Rice to Leave by Year's End?

    Pleeeease, please, don't cry too many tears. If Bush wins, Rice won't stay, gossip some in the Washingtonian (link via Political Wire):

    A former Stanford provost, Rice has been telling pals that she’s returning to California even if Bush is reelected.

    “People who don’t believe she’s leaving don’t know Condi,” a friend says. “She’s outta here, and that was happening before the commission mess.”

    Sources in the Washingtonian also speculate that if Rice is nominated for a confirmation post, she may be "too controversial politically to ever get past a Senate confirmation hearing."

    Posted by Eric at 04:52 PM | Comments (3)

    Are the Bush Kiddies Off Fighting the War?

    David F. D'Alessandro, chairman and chief executive officer of John Hancock Financial Services in the Boston Globe, on children of the rich and fighting in war:

    FOR TWO GUYS about the same age, George W. Bush and I do not have much in common. There are, however, two realities we do share: His daughter Barbara and my son Michael both attend Yale. And neither one is about to join the United States armed forces in Iraq. Why not?

    Because they don't have to, they don't want to, and George W. and I won't let them ... That's why the president is able to press on: All he has at risk personally is his presidency, not his children. That's why I am not organizing protests and why the rest of us are not outraged at every turn. This war has no personal consequences for most of us who as '60s peaceniks changed the world. Shame on us, both of us -- all of us.

    John Kerry was right when he said it in 1971, and he would be wise to take a stand now and say it again: "How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?" Mr. President, as this semester ends at Yale, I won't ask Michael to die for a mistake. Are you going to ask that of Barbara?

    Posted by Eric at 04:32 PM | Comments (1)

    Are the Bush Kiddies Off Fighting the War?

    David F. D'Alessandro, chairman and chief executive officer of John Hancock Financial Services in the Boston Globe, on children of the rich and fighting in war:

    FOR TWO GUYS about the same age, George W. Bush and I do not have much in common. There are, however, two realities we do share: His daughter Barbara and my son Michael both attend Yale. And neither one is about to join the United States armed forces in Iraq. Why not?

    Because they don't have to, they don't want to, and George W. and I won't let them ... That's why the president is able to press on: All he has at risk personally is his presidency, not his children. That's why I am not organizing protests and why the rest of us are not outraged at every turn. This war has no personal consequences for most of us who as '60s peaceniks changed the world. Shame on us, both of us -- all of us.

    John Kerry was right when he said it in 1971, and he would be wise to take a stand now and say it again: "How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?" Mr. President, as this semester ends at Yale, I won't ask Michael to die for a mistake. Are you going to ask that of Barbara?

    Posted by Eric at 04:32 PM | Comments (9)

    Bush Policies Costing Consumers $528 More for Energy than Clinton

    Finds a Center for American Progress study:


    In 2000, George W. Bush promised the American people that, if elected president he would "deal with the energy problem." But, as the average cost of gasoline tops $2 a gallon for the first time ever, the Bush administration still lacks a viable energy strategy. Instead of pursuing a bi-partisan strategy to lower oil prices, the administration reflexively pushes its failed energy legislation written by Vice President Cheney's secret energy task force with the help of former Enron CEO Ken Lay and other oil executives. That bill, which repeatedly has been rejected by Congress, provides billions in subsidies to energy companies and undermines essential environmental regulations but does little to promote conservation or alternative fuels – efforts that would insulate consumers from fossil fuel price spikes. The persistent high prices have padded the profits of oil and gas companies – who have contributed more than $3.5 million to Bush's presidential campaigns. Meanwhile, according to Gov. Jennifer Granholm (D-MI) "the 42-cent rise in average gas prices since Mr. Bush took office had cost consumers $42 billion year." Because the Bush administration has failed to control costs, the average American is paying is $528 more for energy than they did during the previous administration – more than most received in income tax cuts.

    Posted by Eric at 04:21 PM | Comments (2)

    Bush Policies Costing Consumers $528 More for Energy than Clinton

    Finds a Center for American Progress study:


    In 2000, George W. Bush promised the American people that, if elected president he would "deal with the energy problem." But, as the average cost of gasoline tops $2 a gallon for the first time ever, the Bush administration still lacks a viable energy strategy. Instead of pursuing a bi-partisan strategy to lower oil prices, the administration reflexively pushes its failed energy legislation written by Vice President Cheney's secret energy task force with the help of former Enron CEO Ken Lay and other oil executives. That bill, which repeatedly has been rejected by Congress, provides billions in subsidies to energy companies and undermines essential environmental regulations but does little to promote conservation or alternative fuels – efforts that would insulate consumers from fossil fuel price spikes. The persistent high prices have padded the profits of oil and gas companies – who have contributed more than $3.5 million to Bush's presidential campaigns. Meanwhile, according to Gov. Jennifer Granholm (D-MI) "the 42-cent rise in average gas prices since Mr. Bush took office had cost consumers $42 billion year." Because the Bush administration has failed to control costs, the average American is paying is $528 more for energy than they did during the previous administration – more than most received in income tax cuts.

    Posted by Eric at 04:21 PM | Comments (9)

    5 Dead While Undergoing Interrogations?

    The Denver Post takes a look at Pentagon records and, as Talk Left reports, finds that "five prisoners have died at four detention camps (including Abu Ghraib) while undergoing interrogation by the U.S."

    Posted by Eric at 10:04 AM | Comments (22)

    5 Dead While Undergoing Interrogations?

    The Denver Post takes a look at Pentagon records and, as Talk Left reports, finds that "five prisoners have died at four detention camps (including Abu Ghraib) while undergoing interrogation by the U.S."

    Posted by Eric at 10:04 AM | Comments (6)

    Mixed Support for Bush on Iraq and Econ in Texas

    Bush takes Texas easily, no surprise, but the poll numbers on Iraq and the economy are somewhat interesting:

    As for Bush's specific handling of the economy and the war, however, Texans were less approving. Forty-nine percent said they approved of his handling of the economy while 50 percent said they disapproved.

    While half said they approve of the president's handling of the war in Iraq, 48 percent said they disapproved.

    Posted by Eric at 10:00 AM | Comments (96)

    Mixed Support for Bush on Iraq and Econ in Texas

    Bush takes Texas easily, no surprise, but the poll numbers on Iraq and the economy are somewhat interesting:

    As for Bush's specific handling of the economy and the war, however, Texans were less approving. Forty-nine percent said they approved of his handling of the economy while 50 percent said they disapproved.

    While half said they approve of the president's handling of the war in Iraq, 48 percent said they disapproved.

    Posted by Eric at 10:00 AM | Comments (4)

    More Wit and Wisdom of Michael Savage

    Some constitutional rights groups are apparently in bed with terrorists. From Media Matters:

    SAVAGE: Look the enemy is taking advantage of America’s moral code. America is being exploited by their own -- or they’re being hung by the petard of civil rights and human rights. …The problem is the Liberals in this country and the -- the gooney birds at the UN are arguing that the terrorists are not combatants but only criminals, and therefore we’re not allowed to drop a bomb on them. ... There is no greater friend of Al Qaeda than the ACLU. There is no greater friend of Al Qaeda than Human Rights Watch. There is no greater friend of Al Qaeda than the National Lawyers Guild. And if we don’t understand that they would use their power if they had it then we’re really crazy.
    You'll recall that the ACLU has defended Rush Limbaugh. Hm.

    Posted by Eric at 09:05 AM | Comments (13)

    More Wit and Wisdom of Michael Savage

    Some constitutional rights groups are apparently in bed with terrorists. From Media Matters:

    SAVAGE: Look the enemy is taking advantage of America’s moral code. America is being exploited by their own -- or they’re being hung by the petard of civil rights and human rights. …The problem is the Liberals in this country and the -- the gooney birds at the UN are arguing that the terrorists are not combatants but only criminals, and therefore we’re not allowed to drop a bomb on them. ... There is no greater friend of Al Qaeda than the ACLU. There is no greater friend of Al Qaeda than Human Rights Watch. There is no greater friend of Al Qaeda than the National Lawyers Guild. And if we don’t understand that they would use their power if they had it then we’re really crazy.
    You'll recall that the ACLU has defended Rush Limbaugh. Hm.

    Posted by Eric at 09:05 AM | Comments (8)

    EPI: "Jobs shift away from industries that provide health insurance"

    Employers are less likely to provide health coverage to workers, finds the Economic Policy Institute:

    Nationwide, industries in which the share of total jobs has declined insure 68% of their workers, while 55% of workers are insured in industries in which the share of jobs has increased. ... This shift also suggests that recent disturbing trends in health insurance coverage may continue. In 2002 (the most recent year for which data are available), 3.7 million more Americans had no health insurance than two years earlier, bringing the total uninsured to 43.3 million. Of these uninsured, 26 million were workers, over half of whom were working full time for the entire year.

    Despite the increase of individuals insured through Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, the U.S. health care system still relies heavily on employer-provided health insurance. Making affordable health insurance less available at the workplace will have a significant impact on the living standards of working families.

    Posted by Eric at 09:00 AM | Comments (15)

    EPI: "Jobs shift away from industries that provide health insurance"

    Employers are less likely to provide health coverage to workers, finds the Economic Policy Institute:

    Nationwide, industries in which the share of total jobs has declined insure 68% of their workers, while 55% of workers are insured in industries in which the share of jobs has increased. ... This shift also suggests that recent disturbing trends in health insurance coverage may continue. In 2002 (the most recent year for which data are available), 3.7 million more Americans had no health insurance than two years earlier, bringing the total uninsured to 43.3 million. Of these uninsured, 26 million were workers, over half of whom were working full time for the entire year.

    Despite the increase of individuals insured through Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, the U.S. health care system still relies heavily on employer-provided health insurance. Making affordable health insurance less available at the workplace will have a significant impact on the living standards of working families.

    Posted by Eric at 09:00 AM | Comments (5)

    Bush Donors Cashing In

    The DNC has a decent special report on how HMOs, and other industry groups, have given millions to the GOP and gotten special favors in return.

    Recently, the Washington Post had a two-part series on the Bush fundraising pioneers.

    One of the more complete sites about the Bush fundraisers has been put together by Public Citizen at http://whitehouseforsale.org/

    Posted by Eric at 08:46 AM | Comments (35)

    Bush Donors Cashing In

    The DNC has a decent special report on how HMOs, and other industry groups, have given millions to the GOP and gotten special favors in return.

    Recently, the Washington Post had a two-part series on the Bush fundraising pioneers.

    One of the more complete sites about the Bush fundraisers has been put together by Public Citizen at http://whitehouseforsale.org/

    Posted by Eric at 08:46 AM | Comments (7)

    Talk Guests of Interest

    We 5/19: Laura Bush - Leno
    Fr 5/21: Darrell Hammond - Conan
    Tu 5/25: Al Franken, Janeane Garofalo, Lizz Winstead, Chuck D - Colin Quinn
    We 5/26: Marc Maron
    Th 5/27: Sen. John McCain - Conan
    Th 5/27: Tom Brokaw - Letterman
    Fr 5/28: Bob Woodward - Letterman

    Courtesy of Sue Trowbridge.

    Posted by Eric at 05:00 AM | Comments (16)

    Talk Guests of Interest

    We 5/19: Laura Bush - Leno
    Fr 5/21: Darrell Hammond - Conan
    Tu 5/25: Al Franken, Janeane Garofalo, Lizz Winstead, Chuck D - Colin Quinn
    We 5/26: Marc Maron
    Th 5/27: Sen. John McCain - Conan
    Th 5/27: Tom Brokaw - Letterman
    Fr 5/28: Bob Woodward - Letterman

    Courtesy of Sue Trowbridge.

    Posted by Eric at 05:00 AM | Comments (9)

    More Soldier Scandals in Iraq

    First, an intel staffer at Abu Gharib says the Army is trying to coverup the abuses at Abu Ghraib prison. ABC News.

    Next, Reuters and NBC staff members were beaten by US forces:

    The three first told Reuters of the ordeal after their release but only decided to make it public when the U.S. military said there was no evidence they had been abused, and following the exposure of similar mistreatment of detainees at Abu Ghraib prison near Baghdad.

    An Iraqi journalist working for U.S. network NBC, who was arrested with the Reuters staff, also said he had been beaten and mistreated, NBC said Tuesday.

    Two of the three Reuters staff said they had been forced to insert a finger into their anus and then lick it, and were forced to put shoes in their mouths, particularly humiliating in Arab culture.

    All three said they were forced to make demeaning gestures as soldiers laughed, taunted them and took photographs. They said they did not want to give details publicly earlier because of the degrading nature of the abuse.

    Posted by Eric at 04:05 AM | Comments (17)

    More Soldier Scandals in Iraq

    First, an intel staffer at Abu Gharib says the Army is trying to coverup the abuses at Abu Ghraib prison. ABC News.

    Next, Reuters and NBC staff members were beaten by US forces:

    The three first told Reuters of the ordeal after their release but only decided to make it public when the U.S. military said there was no evidence they had been abused, and following the exposure of similar mistreatment of detainees at Abu Ghraib prison near Baghdad.

    An Iraqi journalist working for U.S. network NBC, who was arrested with the Reuters staff, also said he had been beaten and mistreated, NBC said Tuesday.

    Two of the three Reuters staff said they had been forced to insert a finger into their anus and then lick it, and were forced to put shoes in their mouths, particularly humiliating in Arab culture.

    All three said they were forced to make demeaning gestures as soldiers laughed, taunted them and took photographs. They said they did not want to give details publicly earlier because of the degrading nature of the abuse.

    Posted by Eric at 04:05 AM | Comments (9)

    Death Penalty and Innocence

    From Western Prison Project:

  • Since 1973, number of people who have been released from death row with evidence of their innocence: 103
  • Number of persons executed in Florida since 1977: 51
  • Number of persons released from Florida death row with evidence of innocence, since 1973: 22
  • Number of persons on death row in Illinois on December 31, 2001: 158
  • Number of persons executed in Illinois since 1977: 12
  • Number of persons released from Illinois death row with evidence of innocence, since 1973: 13
  • Number of death row prisoners freed by Illinois Governor Ryan on January 10, 2003: 4
  • Percent of Illinois death row prisoners whose death sentences were commuted to life or shorter sentences on January 11, 2003 by Governor Ryan after he reviewed each case and found "questions about the fairness of the death penalty system as a whole" : 100%

    Posted by Eric at 03:46 AM | Comments (22)

    Death Penalty and Innocence

    From Western Prison Project:

  • Since 1973, number of people who have been released from death row with evidence of their innocence: 103
  • Number of persons executed in Florida since 1977: 51
  • Number of persons released from Florida death row with evidence of innocence, since 1973: 22
  • Number of persons on death row in Illinois on December 31, 2001: 158
  • Number of persons executed in Illinois since 1977: 12
  • Number of persons released from Illinois death row with evidence of innocence, since 1973: 13
  • Number of death row prisoners freed by Illinois Governor Ryan on January 10, 2003: 4
  • Percent of Illinois death row prisoners whose death sentences were commuted to life or shorter sentences on January 11, 2003 by Governor Ryan after he reviewed each case and found "questions about the fairness of the death penalty system as a whole" : 100%

    Posted by Eric at 03:46 AM | Comments (9)

    May 18, 2004

    Tuesday

    News
    WP. As Violence Deepens, So Does Pessimism
    WP. Bremer Vows to Continue Planned Transfer of Power
    WP. Democrats Ask to Recall Haynes: New Questions for Judicial Nominee
    The Hill. RNC offers ‘Super Ranger’ status
    USAT. Bush leads in negative ads, but Kerry has help
    NYT. M.P.'s Received Orders to Strip Iraqi Detainees
    NYT. 9/11 Panel Has a Question: Why Wasn't the City Prepared?
    LAT. Disabled People Can Sue States Over Access, High Court Rules
    LAT. Pervasive Abuse Alleged by Freed Detainees, Red Cross
    LAT. Death of Prisoner Detailed in Testimony
    LAT. Kerry Hits the Oregon Trail With Dean
    LAT. Bush, Kerry Extol Brown Ruling, Separately
    Bloomberg. Most key Bush fund-raisers are executives, entrepreneurs
    LAT. Schwarzenegger is reticent on Bush campaign; Keeps president at arms length
    BGlobe. Kerry challenges Bush policies on Iraq
    BGlobe. In Kerry veepstakes, Clark is the wild card
    BGlobe. Professors back Kerry with campaign givi
    AP. Bush, Kerry Mark Brown 50th Anniversary
    AP. Same-Sex Couples Marry in Massachusetts
    AP. Kerry Takes Campaign Stage With Dean

    Commentary
    Krugman. The Wastrel Son
    Seattle PI. Senate should halt nuclear waste plan
    Marie Cocco. U.S. lets Afghanistan traffic in opium
    David Moberg. Candidate Conundrum: Kerry must deal with Bush’s legacy of chaos
    Jonathan Cohn. AMERICA'S ABU GHRAIBS
    Julian Bond. The Broken Promise of Brown
    Paul Waldman. Who's the Strongest of Them All? No one's going to kick sand in John Kerry's face
    Michael Tomasky. End Times: The Bushies may be accomplishing what liberals never could -- bringing the era of conservative morality to a close
    Mary Lynn F. Jones. Food Fight: Hill Republicans are not just slinging scraps at Dems. They're shoving them away from the table entirely
    E. J. Dionne Jr. Can Kerry Stay Out Of Bush's Trap?
    Donna E. Shalala. Politics must be put aside to address insurance crisis
    Thomas Oliphant. Europe's risky waiting game
    Cynthia Tucker. Get black teens back to books
    AJC. Ignoring detainees' rights weakens U.S. principles
    Jesse Jackson. Education's still separate, unequal

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (8)

    Tuesday

    News
    WP. As Violence Deepens, So Does Pessimism
    WP. Bremer Vows to Continue Planned Transfer of Power
    WP. Democrats Ask to Recall Haynes: New Questions for Judicial Nominee
    The Hill. RNC offers ‘Super Ranger’ status
    USAT. Bush leads in negative ads, but Kerry has help
    NYT. M.P.'s Received Orders to Strip Iraqi Detainees
    NYT. 9/11 Panel Has a Question: Why Wasn't the City Prepared?
    LAT. Disabled People Can Sue States Over Access, High Court Rules
    LAT. Pervasive Abuse Alleged by Freed Detainees, Red Cross
    LAT. Death of Prisoner Detailed in Testimony
    LAT. Kerry Hits the Oregon Trail With Dean
    LAT. Bush, Kerry Extol Brown Ruling, Separately
    Bloomberg. Most key Bush fund-raisers are executives, entrepreneurs
    LAT. Schwarzenegger is reticent on Bush campaign; Keeps president at arms length
    BGlobe. Kerry challenges Bush policies on Iraq
    BGlobe. In Kerry veepstakes, Clark is the wild card
    BGlobe. Professors back Kerry with campaign givi
    AP. Bush, Kerry Mark Brown 50th Anniversary
    AP. Same-Sex Couples Marry in Massachusetts
    AP. Kerry Takes Campaign Stage With Dean

    Commentary
    Krugman. The Wastrel Son
    Seattle PI. Senate should halt nuclear waste plan
    Marie Cocco. U.S. lets Afghanistan traffic in opium
    David Moberg. Candidate Conundrum: Kerry must deal with Bush’s legacy of chaos
    Jonathan Cohn. AMERICA'S ABU GHRAIBS
    Julian Bond. The Broken Promise of Brown
    Paul Waldman. Who's the Strongest of Them All? No one's going to kick sand in John Kerry's face
    Michael Tomasky. End Times: The Bushies may be accomplishing what liberals never could -- bringing the era of conservative morality to a close
    Mary Lynn F. Jones. Food Fight: Hill Republicans are not just slinging scraps at Dems. They're shoving them away from the table entirely
    E. J. Dionne Jr. Can Kerry Stay Out Of Bush's Trap?
    Donna E. Shalala. Politics must be put aside to address insurance crisis
    Thomas Oliphant. Europe's risky waiting game
    Cynthia Tucker. Get black teens back to books
    AJC. Ignoring detainees' rights weakens U.S. principles
    Jesse Jackson. Education's still separate, unequal

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (8)

    Welcome the Obama Blog

    The next US Senator, Barack Obama, has a blog up: http://www.obamablog.com/.

    Go over and say hi, or drop a few bucks.

    Posted by Eric at 05:41 PM | Comments (7)

    Welcome the Obama Blog

    The next US Senator, Barack Obama, has a blog up: http://www.obamablog.com/.

    Go over and say hi, or drop a few bucks.

    Posted by Eric at 05:41 PM | Comments (5)

    If Rummy Resigns ...

    Will an equally inept guy take over, e.g. Paul Wolfowitz? That's the concern of some Democrats, AP:

    As details of prison abuses in Iraq surfaced, many Democrats on Capitol Hill demanded that Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld resign. But not Sen. Carl Levin. The top Senate Democrat on a key military committee said he is wary about who might be the post-Rumsfeld secretary.

    "If it would be his deputy, I don't see that that would represent a change at all in terms of the direction we should go," Levin told reporters this month.

    Rumsfeld's deputy is Paul Wolfowitz. If Democrats are dissatisfied with Rumsfeld, that doesn't compare to the disdain some feel for the man seen as the intellectual architect of the Iraq war.

    Some of their anger spilled out at last week's Senate Armed Services Committee hearing. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., told Wolfowitz his credibility had been undermined because he had "made numerous predictions, time and time again, that have turned out to be untrue and were based on faulty assumptions."

    My favorite Wolfowitz moment was his bashing of war hero Gen. Eric Shinseki:
    After Gen. Eric Shinseki, then the Army chief of staff, said in February 2003 that several hundred thousand troops would have to stay in Iraq after the war, Wolfowitz told a House panel that "we can say with reasonable confidence" the estimate was "way off the mark."

    Posted by Eric at 05:27 PM | Comments (13)

    If Rummy Resigns ...

    Will an equally inept guy take over, e.g. Paul Wolfowitz? That's the concern of some Democrats, AP:

    As details of prison abuses in Iraq surfaced, many Democrats on Capitol Hill demanded that Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld resign. But not Sen. Carl Levin. The top Senate Democrat on a key military committee said he is wary about who might be the post-Rumsfeld secretary.

    "If it would be his deputy, I don't see that that would represent a change at all in terms of the direction we should go," Levin told reporters this month.

    Rumsfeld's deputy is Paul Wolfowitz. If Democrats are dissatisfied with Rumsfeld, that doesn't compare to the disdain some feel for the man seen as the intellectual architect of the Iraq war.

    Some of their anger spilled out at last week's Senate Armed Services Committee hearing. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., told Wolfowitz his credibility had been undermined because he had "made numerous predictions, time and time again, that have turned out to be untrue and were based on faulty assumptions."

    My favorite Wolfowitz moment was his bashing of war hero Gen. Eric Shinseki:
    After Gen. Eric Shinseki, then the Army chief of staff, said in February 2003 that several hundred thousand troops would have to stay in Iraq after the war, Wolfowitz told a House panel that "we can say with reasonable confidence" the estimate was "way off the mark."

    Posted by Eric at 05:27 PM | Comments (13)

    Bush Administration Blew Chance to Nab Terrorist

    From NBC News. So who is the terrorist?

    With Tuesday’s attacks, Abu Musab Zarqawi, a Jordanian militant with ties to al-Qaida, is now blamed for more than 700 terrorist killings in Iraq.
    And what did the Bush administration do?
    But NBC News has learned that long before the war the Bush administration had several chances to wipe out his terrorist operation and perhaps kill Zarqawi himself — but never pulled the trigger.

    In June 2002, U.S. officials say intelligence had revealed that Zarqawi and members of al-Qaida had set up a weapons lab at Kirma, in northern Iraq, producing deadly ricin and cyanide.

    The Pentagon quickly drafted plans to attack the camp with cruise missiles and airstrikes and sent it to the White House, where, according to U.S. government sources, the plan was debated to death in the National Security Council.

    But, of course, the White House killed the plans.
    The Pentagon drew up a second strike plan, and the White House again killed it. By then the administration had set its course for war with Iraq.

    “People were more obsessed with developing the coalition to overthrow Saddam than to execute the president’s policy of preemption against terrorists,” according to terrorism expert and former National Security Council member Roger Cressey ... The Pentagon drew up still another attack plan, and for the third time, the National Security Council killed it.

    And we get to the big reason why. Irony: "Military officials insist their case for attacking Zarqawi’s operation was airtight, but the administration feared destroying the terrorist camp in Iraq could undercut its case for war against Saddam."

    Zarqawi is also suspected in the killing of Nicholas Berg, among other things.

    Posted by Eric at 01:49 PM | Comments (15)

    Bush Administration Blew Chance to Nab Terrorist

    From NBC News. So who is the terrorist?

    With Tuesday’s attacks, Abu Musab Zarqawi, a Jordanian militant with ties to al-Qaida, is now blamed for more than 700 terrorist killings in Iraq.
    And what did the Bush administration do?
    But NBC News has learned that long before the war the Bush administration had several chances to wipe out his terrorist operation and perhaps kill Zarqawi himself — but never pulled the trigger.

    In June 2002, U.S. officials say intelligence had revealed that Zarqawi and members of al-Qaida had set up a weapons lab at Kirma, in northern Iraq, producing deadly ricin and cyanide.

    The Pentagon quickly drafted plans to attack the camp with cruise missiles and airstrikes and sent it to the White House, where, according to U.S. government sources, the plan was debated to death in the National Security Council.

    But, of course, the White House killed the plans.
    The Pentagon drew up a second strike plan, and the White House again killed it. By then the administration had set its course for war with Iraq.

    “People were more obsessed with developing the coalition to overthrow Saddam than to execute the president’s policy of preemption against terrorists,” according to terrorism expert and former National Security Council member Roger Cressey ... The Pentagon drew up still another attack plan, and for the third time, the National Security Council killed it.

    And we get to the big reason why. Irony: "Military officials insist their case for attacking Zarqawi’s operation was airtight, but the administration feared destroying the terrorist camp in Iraq could undercut its case for war against Saddam."

    Zarqawi is also suspected in the killing of Nicholas Berg, among other things.

    Posted by Eric at 01:49 PM | Comments (7)

    Administration Lying about Condoms

    Reckless and dangerous, as the NY Times reports, the Bush administration is hating on condom use:

    The administration is using pseudoscience to justify its decisions. Randall Tobias, its AIDS coordinator, has said numerous times that condoms are not effective at preventing the spread of AIDS in the general population. He repeated this assertion while testifying in the House of Representatives in March, citing the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Mr. Tobias is wrong. The dean of the London School wrote to him to say that the school had never produced any such report, and that its research shows that condoms do work.

    Mr. Tobias and others in the administration often cite Uganda as a place where AIDS transmission was reduced by teaching youth to be abstinent. But Ugandans — and more neutral researchers — say that condom use plays a big role. In Zambia and Brazil, condom use has also reduced AIDS transmission, but administration officials do not talk about these countries. They have removed information about condom use and references to the value of sex education and condom promotion from the Web sites of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Agency for International Development. Their benighted policies put millions at risk.

    In 1993, the CDC wrote: "The proper and consistent use of latex condoms when engaging in sexual intercourse--vaginal, anal, or oral--can greatly reduce a person's risk of acquiring or transmitting STDs, including HIV infection. In fact, recent studies provide compelling evidence that latex condoms are highly effective in protecting against HIV infection when used properly for every act of intercourse."

    Posted by Eric at 01:35 PM | Comments (14)

    Administration Lying about Condoms

    Reckless and dangerous, as the NY Times reports, the Bush administration is hating on condom use:

    The administration is using pseudoscience to justify its decisions. Randall Tobias, its AIDS coordinator, has said numerous times that condoms are not effective at preventing the spread of AIDS in the general population. He repeated this assertion while testifying in the House of Representatives in March, citing the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Mr. Tobias is wrong. The dean of the London School wrote to him to say that the school had never produced any such report, and that its research shows that condoms do work.

    Mr. Tobias and others in the administration often cite Uganda as a place where AIDS transmission was reduced by teaching youth to be abstinent. But Ugandans — and more neutral researchers — say that condom use plays a big role. In Zambia and Brazil, condom use has also reduced AIDS transmission, but administration officials do not talk about these countries. They have removed information about condom use and references to the value of sex education and condom promotion from the Web sites of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Agency for International Development. Their benighted policies put millions at risk.

    In 1993, the CDC wrote: "The proper and consistent use of latex condoms when engaging in sexual intercourse--vaginal, anal, or oral--can greatly reduce a person's risk of acquiring or transmitting STDs, including HIV infection. In fact, recent studies provide compelling evidence that latex condoms are highly effective in protecting against HIV infection when used properly for every act of intercourse."

    Posted by Eric at 01:35 PM | Comments (4)

    More Confirmation that Hamster's College Life is Boring

    Another conservative talk show host says that Rush is right about the Abu Ghraib incidents - that it's just another college fun party. Roger Hedgecock, filling in for Rush. From Media Matters:

    HEDGECOCK: I don't think we're gonna have to wait too long before Lynndie England -- the uh, the Satellite Dish herself -- has her own spread in Playboy magazine -- you know, "The Women of Abu Ghraib." You can just see it coming, can't you?

    CALLER: No, I really can't.

    HEDGECOCK: Oh, I can, Debbie. Thanks for the call.

    [...]

    HEDGECOCK: Yeah, this is unbelievable. ... Private First Class Lynndie England explaining the mystery of why the soldiers at Abu Ghraib took pictures. She said, "We thought it looked funny." I mean the more -- you know, I know this was the first day or two, I guess, that Rush was getting into this -- the more I think about it, the more he was right the first time. He said, "This is like -- this is like a, a, uh, a prank; this is like college; this is like fraternities; this is -- this is just these people. This is how they were raised."

    "This is like college." Hm. By the way, the ad Media Matters is running about Rush Limbaugh and his comments is generating a bit of controversy. A Disney-owned station has rejected the ad.

    Posted by Eric at 12:57 PM | Comments (9)

    More Confirmation that Hamster's College Life is Boring

    Another conservative talk show host says that Rush is right about the Abu Ghraib incidents - that it's just another college fun party. Roger Hedgecock, filling in for Rush. From Media Matters:

    HEDGECOCK: I don't think we're gonna have to wait too long before Lynndie England -- the uh, the Satellite Dish herself -- has her own spread in Playboy magazine -- you know, "The Women of Abu Ghraib." You can just see it coming, can't you?

    CALLER: No, I really can't.

    HEDGECOCK: Oh, I can, Debbie. Thanks for the call.

    [...]

    HEDGECOCK: Yeah, this is unbelievable. ... Private First Class Lynndie England explaining the mystery of why the soldiers at Abu Ghraib took pictures. She said, "We thought it looked funny." I mean the more -- you know, I know this was the first day or two, I guess, that Rush was getting into this -- the more I think about it, the more he was right the first time. He said, "This is like -- this is like a, a, uh, a prank; this is like college; this is like fraternities; this is -- this is just these people. This is how they were raised."

    "This is like college." Hm. By the way, the ad Media Matters is running about Rush Limbaugh and his comments is generating a bit of controversy. A Disney-owned station has rejected the ad.

    Posted by Eric at 12:57 PM | Comments (5)

    Zell Miller Compares Abu Ghraib to Gym Class

    As Pandagon points out:

    Zell Miller compares the torture at Abu Ghraib to having to shower in gym class.

    Yes, I remember the first time I had to shower in a locker room. It was my first time naked (or with a towel on) in front of other men. I was embarassed a little bit. However, since nobody locked the door, put a bag over my head, beat me, sodomized me with broomsticks and light sticks, forced men into sexual acts with other people, threatened my life, and took pictures of the whole thing for their amusement, I never thought to compare it to what happened in Iraq, because it wasn't even in the same galaxy of occurences.

    Posted by Eric at 12:45 PM | Comments (4)

    Zell Miller Compares Abu Ghraib to Gym Class

    As Pandagon points out:

    Zell Miller compares the torture at Abu Ghraib to having to shower in gym class.

    Yes, I remember the first time I had to shower in a locker room. It was my first time naked (or with a towel on) in front of other men. I was embarassed a little bit. However, since nobody locked the door, put a bag over my head, beat me, sodomized me with broomsticks and light sticks, forced men into sexual acts with other people, threatened my life, and took pictures of the whole thing for their amusement, I never thought to compare it to what happened in Iraq, because it wasn't even in the same galaxy of occurences.

    Posted by Eric at 12:45 PM | Comments (9)

    Nancy Pelosi: One Tough Democrat

    The American Prospect on the Democratic House Leader:

    Has Pelosi moved to the right to hold the Democrats together? In fact, Pelosi has evolved much as Democratic voters evolved during the presidential primaries: toward a politics that combines populist economics with deficit hawkishness and a heavily armed multilateralism. Nearly a year before Democratic voters figured it out, Pelosi decided that the party needed unity and electability above all else.

    The art of winning politics comes naturally to Pelosi. Her father, Thomas D'Alesandro Jr., had been the ward boss and councilman for Baltimore's Little Italy, then a congressman, and then, from 1947 though 1959, the city's mayor. Accounts of her girlhood home sound like something out of The Last Hurrah -- in particular, her father's daily habit of receiving constituents in his living room. Even today, married to wealth (her husband, Paul, is an investor), she is clearly at home in the world of cigar-chomping ward heelers -- so at ease that the old bulls of the Democratic Party, including such paradigmatic blue-collar Democrats as Pennsylvania's John Murtha, have always felt comfortable with her ...

    Pelosi's greatest skill, however, is her ability to synthesize positions that reflect the various inclinations of her caucus and the political opportunities of the moment -- and the period. According to Obey, "She is really good at walking into a room with 15 people [who have] different opinions on subjects, [and she'll] synthesize and say with great clarity, 'Here's what I think we ought to do. She's very good ... at finding common ground. That's why she's not a liberal Democratic leader; she's a Democratic leader who happens to be liberal."

    If anyone can attest to Pelosi's persuasive powers, it's Ben Chandler. Just last November, Chandler, then Kentucky's attorney general, lost a close gubernatorial election to Republican Ernie Fletcher, whose congressional seat, accordingly, was abruptly open. A special election was scheduled for February 17, and Chandler, as he told the Prospect, "had no plans to make the race. I was worn out. I was, in some respects, tired of the entire process. And that's when Nancy Pelosi stepped in."

    Pelosi's website is here.

    Pelosi recently asked: 'Are You Better Off Than You Were Four Years Ago?'

    Posted by Eric at 12:10 PM | Comments (3)

    Nancy Pelosi: One Tough Democrat

    The American Prospect on the Democratic House Leader:

    Has Pelosi moved to the right to hold the Democrats together? In fact, Pelosi has evolved much as Democratic voters evolved during the presidential primaries: toward a politics that combines populist economics with deficit hawkishness and a heavily armed multilateralism. Nearly a year before Democratic voters figured it out, Pelosi decided that the party needed unity and electability above all else.

    The art of winning politics comes naturally to Pelosi. Her father, Thomas D'Alesandro Jr., had been the ward boss and councilman for Baltimore's Little Italy, then a congressman, and then, from 1947 though 1959, the city's mayor. Accounts of her girlhood home sound like something out of The Last Hurrah -- in particular, her father's daily habit of receiving constituents in his living room. Even today, married to wealth (her husband, Paul, is an investor), she is clearly at home in the world of cigar-chomping ward heelers -- so at ease that the old bulls of the Democratic Party, including such paradigmatic blue-collar Democrats as Pennsylvania's John Murtha, have always felt comfortable with her ...

    Pelosi's greatest skill, however, is her ability to synthesize positions that reflect the various inclinations of her caucus and the political opportunities of the moment -- and the period. According to Obey, "She is really good at walking into a room with 15 people [who have] different opinions on subjects, [and she'll] synthesize and say with great clarity, 'Here's what I think we ought to do. She's very good ... at finding common ground. That's why she's not a liberal Democratic leader; she's a Democratic leader who happens to be liberal."

    If anyone can attest to Pelosi's persuasive powers, it's Ben Chandler. Just last November, Chandler, then Kentucky's attorney general, lost a close gubernatorial election to Republican Ernie Fletcher, whose congressional seat, accordingly, was abruptly open. A special election was scheduled for February 17, and Chandler, as he told the Prospect, "had no plans to make the race. I was worn out. I was, in some respects, tired of the entire process. And that's when Nancy Pelosi stepped in."

    Pelosi's website is here.

    Pelosi recently asked: 'Are You Better Off Than You Were Four Years Ago?'

    Posted by Eric at 12:10 PM | Comments (1)

    Rummy Quotes

    From The Center for American Progress:

    "We can't say something that is inaccurate."

    – Donald Rumsfeld, 5/17/04

    VERSUS

    "[Saddam's] amassed large, clandestine stockpiles of biological weapons, including Anthrax, botulism, toxins and possibly Smallpox. [Saddam's] amassed large, clandestine stockpiles of chemical weapons, including VX, Sarin and mustard gas."

    – Donald Rumsfeld, 9/20/02

    Posted by Eric at 11:39 AM | Comments (10)

    Rummy Quotes

    From The Center for American Progress:

    "We can't say something that is inaccurate."

    – Donald Rumsfeld, 5/17/04

    VERSUS

    "[Saddam's] amassed large, clandestine stockpiles of biological weapons, including Anthrax, botulism, toxins and possibly Smallpox. [Saddam's] amassed large, clandestine stockpiles of chemical weapons, including VX, Sarin and mustard gas."

    – Donald Rumsfeld, 9/20/02

    Posted by Eric at 11:39 AM | Comments (2)

    'Fahrenheit 911' Sets Cannes on Fire

    The buzz about Michael Moore's new film, the Hollywood Reporter:

    At its 4 p.m. screening In Competition at the Palais, the movie occasioned an enthusiastic standing ovation -- onlookers placed it at 15-20 minutes -- punctuated by cries of "bravo!" The crowd included a phalanx of Endeavor agents, led by Ari Emmanuel, along with Mick Jagger, Daryl Hannah and a smattering of French stars and industry insiders.

    "It was the longest standing ovation I've seen in over 25 years," said Harvey Weinstein, whose Miramax Films funded the project over the objections of parent company Walt Disney Co. and who has an exec producer credit on the film, along with Miramax's Agnes Mentre ... Moore predicted at an afternoon news conference: "This film will be seen in the United States before the election; I have no fear of that. There is no distributor as we speak today. It will have a distributor, and I'm completely confident that Miramax is going to be sure that Americans will see the film."

    Posted by Eric at 10:40 AM | Comments (34)

    'Fahrenheit 911' Sets Cannes on Fire

    The buzz about Michael Moore's new film, the Hollywood Reporter:

    At its 4 p.m. screening In Competition at the Palais, the movie occasioned an enthusiastic standing ovation -- onlookers placed it at 15-20 minutes -- punctuated by cries of "bravo!" The crowd included a phalanx of Endeavor agents, led by Ari Emmanuel, along with Mick Jagger, Daryl Hannah and a smattering of French stars and industry insiders.

    "It was the longest standing ovation I've seen in over 25 years," said Harvey Weinstein, whose Miramax Films funded the project over the objections of parent company Walt Disney Co. and who has an exec producer credit on the film, along with Miramax's Agnes Mentre ... Moore predicted at an afternoon news conference: "This film will be seen in the United States before the election; I have no fear of that. There is no distributor as we speak today. It will have a distributor, and I'm completely confident that Miramax is going to be sure that Americans will see the film."

    Posted by Eric at 10:40 AM | Comments (10)

    Obama Leads Ryan in Senate Race

    From the Chicago Sun-Times:

    Democrat Barack Obama leads Republican Jack Ryan 48 percent to 40 percent in the U.S. Senate race, according to a new Daily Southtown poll of 500 likely Illinois voters.

    Previous polls and Obama's internal polls had suggested a wider gap.

    Ryan's campaign greeted the results as evidence Ryan is within striking distance; Obama backers expressed confidence that Obama, a state senator who pounded his opponents in the primary, would stay ahead throughout the campaign.

    Obama's site.

    Posted by Eric at 09:01 AM | Comments (10)

    Obama Leads Ryan in Senate Race

    From the Chicago Sun-Times:

    Democrat Barack Obama leads Republican Jack Ryan 48 percent to 40 percent in the U.S. Senate race, according to a new Daily Southtown poll of 500 likely Illinois voters.

    Previous polls and Obama's internal polls had suggested a wider gap.

    Ryan's campaign greeted the results as evidence Ryan is within striking distance; Obama backers expressed confidence that Obama, a state senator who pounded his opponents in the primary, would stay ahead throughout the campaign.

    Obama's site.

    Posted by Eric at 09:01 AM | Comments (2)

    Politicians Love Spam?

    Not the mystery meat (though the Hawaii delegation probably enjoys it), the junk email, notes the computer nerds at CNET:

    Russo, whose films include "The Rose" and "Trading Places," is not alone. Political spam has become a thoroughly nonpartisan communications technique, with Democrats, Republicans and third parties alike turning to bulk e-mail in numbers that are still small but steadily increasing. Two percent of all spam is political, according to statistics compiled by antispam vendor Brightmail.

    Since Jan. 1, a federal law has regulated spam. But if you look at the law's fine print, you'll find a telling exemption: Our elected representatives made sure the restrictions don't apply to them. As a result, the Can-Spam Act covers only e-mail promoting "a commercial product or service," which lets political spammers off the hook.

    Politicians love to spam for the same reason that Viagra vendors and alleged widows of deposed Nigerian dictators do: Bulk e-mail is a cheap way to reach lots of people. I wrote last year about how Sen. Joseph Lieberman was caught spamming, as was Howard Dean's ostensibly tech-savvy campaign. Republicans Bill Jones, the unsuccessful candidate for governor of California, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and senatorial candidate Elizabeth Dole have resorted to junk e-mail, too.

    Do emails from the Director-General in the Federal Ministry of Miniral and Energy in the Republic of South Africa count as political?

    Posted by Eric at 08:35 AM | Comments (3)

    Politicians Love Spam?

    Not the mystery meat (though the Hawaii delegation probably enjoys it), the junk email, notes the computer nerds at CNET:

    Russo, whose films include "The Rose" and "Trading Places," is not alone. Political spam has become a thoroughly nonpartisan communications technique, with Democrats, Republicans and third parties alike turning to bulk e-mail in numbers that are still small but steadily increasing. Two percent of all spam is political, according to statistics compiled by antispam vendor Brightmail.

    Since Jan. 1, a federal law has regulated spam. But if you look at the law's fine print, you'll find a telling exemption: Our elected representatives made sure the restrictions don't apply to them. As a result, the Can-Spam Act covers only e-mail promoting "a commercial product or service," which lets political spammers off the hook.

    Politicians love to spam for the same reason that Viagra vendors and alleged widows of deposed Nigerian dictators do: Bulk e-mail is a cheap way to reach lots of people. I wrote last year about how Sen. Joseph Lieberman was caught spamming, as was Howard Dean's ostensibly tech-savvy campaign. Republicans Bill Jones, the unsuccessful candidate for governor of California, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and senatorial candidate Elizabeth Dole have resorted to junk e-mail, too.

    Do emails from the Director-General in the Federal Ministry of Miniral and Energy in the Republic of South Africa count as political?

    Posted by Eric at 08:35 AM | Comments (2)

    Someone Look-Up Irony

    Courtesy of Counterspin Central, an Ohio manufacturing plant that President Bush pointed to as an example of his successful economic policies has shut down.

    A reporter asked this question:

    Q: About a year ago, April 24th, last year, the President went to Canton, Ohio. He went to the Timken Company. I don't know if you remember the trip, I wasn't on it. He went to a bearings factory, part of the Timken Company, touted his economic plans and talked about jobs and growth. Timken announced today that they're shutting down that plant that the President visited a year ago. I just wonder if that's ironic, that the President touted his economic strategy, doesn't appear to be working?

    MR. McCLELLAN: One, I don't know about the report or the circumstances related to the company. But I think it is important to point out that our economy is showing great strength, and continuing to grow stronger. We've had more than 1.1 million jobs -- new jobs created since last August. The unemployment rate is well below the averages of the '70s, '80s and '90s. So the economy is moving in the right direction. Obviously we are also in a changing economy.

    And the President believes it's important to push forward on the initiatives he's outlined to make sure workers have the skills they need to fill the jobs of the 21st century. And we must continue to work to move forward on the President's six-point plan to create an even more robust environment for job creation. And we also need to work to make sure that we have an educated workforce, to fill the high-growth jobs of the 21st century.

    But the economy is moving in the right direction, and we need to -- because of the actions that the President took. And we will continue to work to create an even more robust environment for job creation.

    Posted by Eric at 07:52 AM | Comments (3)

    Someone Look-Up Irony

    Courtesy of Counterspin Central, an Ohio manufacturing plant that President Bush pointed to as an example of his successful economic policies has shut down.

    A reporter asked this question:

    Q: About a year ago, April 24th, last year, the President went to Canton, Ohio. He went to the Timken Company. I don't know if you remember the trip, I wasn't on it. He went to a bearings factory, part of the Timken Company, touted his economic plans and talked about jobs and growth. Timken announced today that they're shutting down that plant that the President visited a year ago. I just wonder if that's ironic, that the President touted his economic strategy, doesn't appear to be working?

    MR. McCLELLAN: One, I don't know about the report or the circumstances related to the company. But I think it is important to point out that our economy is showing great strength, and continuing to grow stronger. We've had more than 1.1 million jobs -- new jobs created since last August. The unemployment rate is well below the averages of the '70s, '80s and '90s. So the economy is moving in the right direction. Obviously we are also in a changing economy.

    And the President believes it's important to push forward on the initiatives he's outlined to make sure workers have the skills they need to fill the jobs of the 21st century. And we must continue to work to move forward on the President's six-point plan to create an even more robust environment for job creation. And we also need to work to make sure that we have an educated workforce, to fill the high-growth jobs of the 21st century.

    But the economy is moving in the right direction, and we need to -- because of the actions that the President took. And we will continue to work to create an even more robust environment for job creation.

    Posted by Eric at 07:52 AM | Comments (5)

    David Brock's New Book

    David Brock's new book, "The Republican Noise Machine : Right-Wing Media and How It Corrupts Democracy," is out today. Hopefully I'll get a review copy soon, but his last book, Blinded by the Right, is one of my all-time favorites and I have little doubt this book will rock as well.

    cover

    Posted by Eric at 03:16 AM | Comments (24)

    David Brock's New Book

    David Brock's new book, "The Republican Noise Machine : Right-Wing Media and How It Corrupts Democracy," is out today. Hopefully I'll get a review copy soon, but his last book, Blinded by the Right, is one of my all-time favorites and I have little doubt this book will rock as well.

    cover

    Posted by Eric at 03:16 AM | Comments (1)

    The Wit and Wisdom of Michael Savage

    Heck, it's not like this is out of the ordinary from him. It's just that now, courtesy of David Brock, there's documentation of his rants. From Media Matters:

    Right now, even people sitting on the fence would like George Bush to drop a nuclear weapon on an Arab country. They don't even care which one it would be. I can guarantee you -- I don't need to go to Mr. Schmuck [pollster John] Zogby and ask him his opinion. I don't need anyone's opinion. I'll give you my opinion, because I got a better stethoscope than those fools. It's one man's opinion based upon my own analysis. The most -- I tell you right now -- the largest percentage of Americans would like to see a nuclear weapon dropped on a major Arab capital. They don't even care which one. They'd like an indiscriminate use of a nuclear weapon. They want this over with. One thing people cannot live with, which is an undefined, limitless conflict, which is what we have now. They can't take it. They want this war over with, and they want it ended like the war against Japan. They'd like Big Boy dropped on one of the little cities over there. They don't care where. They don't care any more. The American people have had it up to here with this garbage.

    In fact, Christianity has been one of the great salvations on planet Earth. It's what's necessary in the Middle East. Others have written about it, I think these people need to be forcibly converted to Christianity but I'll get here a little later, I'll move up to that. It's the only thing that can probably turn them into human beings.

    But tell us how you really feel. This is the guy that NBC put under their news banner.

    Posted by Eric at 03:12 AM | Comments (20)

    The Wit and Wisdom of Michael Savage

    Heck, it's not like this is out of the ordinary from him. It's just that now, courtesy of David Brock, there's documentation of his rants. From Media Matters:

    Right now, even people sitting on the fence would like George Bush to drop a nuclear weapon on an Arab country. They don't even care which one it would be. I can guarantee you -- I don't need to go to Mr. Schmuck [pollster John] Zogby and ask him his opinion. I don't need anyone's opinion. I'll give you my opinion, because I got a better stethoscope than those fools. It's one man's opinion based upon my own analysis. The most -- I tell you right now -- the largest percentage of Americans would like to see a nuclear weapon dropped on a major Arab capital. They don't even care which one. They'd like an indiscriminate use of a nuclear weapon. They want this over with. One thing people cannot live with, which is an undefined, limitless conflict, which is what we have now. They can't take it. They want this war over with, and they want it ended like the war against Japan. They'd like Big Boy dropped on one of the little cities over there. They don't care where. They don't care any more. The American people have had it up to here with this garbage.

    In fact, Christianity has been one of the great salvations on planet Earth. It's what's necessary in the Middle East. Others have written about it, I think these people need to be forcibly converted to Christianity but I'll get here a little later, I'll move up to that. It's the only thing that can probably turn them into human beings.

    But tell us how you really feel. This is the guy that NBC put under their news banner.

    Posted by Eric at 03:12 AM | Comments (12)

    May 17, 2004

    Poll: Latino Vote Up for Grabs

    Latino voters in key swing states could go either Democrat or Republican, according to a poll from "Sergio Bendixen & Associates, a Democratic firm that polled in Spanish and English" in USA Today:

    In Florida, Bush leads Kerry, a Massachusetts senator, 55%-35%. The numbers resemble the outcome in 2000, when Bush got 61% of the state's Hispanic vote and Gore got 39% ... Nationally, Bush won 35% of the Latino vote in 2000. Matthew Dowd, chief strategist for the Bush campaign, says it will be hard to win re-election unless Bush raises his share to 40%. In the new poll, Bush falls short with the large Hispanic population in the Southwest. He is backed by 31% in Nevada and by 30% in Arizona and New Mexico. But Bush reached 38% in a nationwide Pew Hispanic Center poll released April 19.

    Bendixen says the Latino vote is "very much up for grabs." About 40% of his poll's respondents said they were undecided or could change their minds. In the rest of the electorate, 85%-90% say their minds are made up, he says.

    Pollster Simon Rosenberg recently said to Hispanics about the 2004 election: "You are key more than any single group of people." However, 54% of Hispanics and blacks are not registered to vote.

    Posted by Eric at 08:36 PM | Comments (4)

    Poll: Latino Vote Up for Grabs

    Latino voters in key swing states could go either Democrat or Republican, according to a poll from "Sergio Bendixen & Associates, a Democratic firm that polled in Spanish and English" in USA Today:

    In Florida, Bush leads Kerry, a Massachusetts senator, 55%-35%. The numbers resemble the outcome in 2000, when Bush got 61% of the state's Hispanic vote and Gore got 39% ... Nationally, Bush won 35% of the Latino vote in 2000. Matthew Dowd, chief strategist for the Bush campaign, says it will be hard to win re-election unless Bush raises his share to 40%. In the new poll, Bush falls short with the large Hispanic population in the Southwest. He is backed by 31% in Nevada and by 30% in Arizona and New Mexico. But Bush reached 38% in a nationwide Pew Hispanic Center poll released April 19.

    Bendixen says the Latino vote is "very much up for grabs." About 40% of his poll's respondents said they were undecided or could change their minds. In the rest of the electorate, 85%-90% say their minds are made up, he says.

    Pollster Simon Rosenberg recently said to Hispanics about the 2004 election: "You are key more than any single group of people." However, 54% of Hispanics and blacks are not registered to vote.

    Posted by Eric at 08:36 PM | Comments (5)

    Little Protests for NYC GOP Convention?

    The Washington Post reports this on Mike Bloomberg and protestors.

    Still, Bloomberg has grown weary of watching the plans for demonstrations grow and grow. So he is poking back. The firefighters and police can complain to Republicans about their contracts, but that is not "very intelligent," he opined. As for that request for a permit in Central Park?

    "You'd ruin the lawn," the mayor replied.

    Civil libertarians note that more than 20 groups have applied for march and rally permits, and the city has not approved one. The New York Civil Liberties Union filed more than 300 complaints against the city for its treatment of demonstrators at a march just before the invasion of Iraq in 2003. Since then, police have several times denied requests for high-visibility rallies.

    Posted by Eric at 07:10 PM | Comments (12)

    Little Protests for NYC GOP Convention?

    The Washington Post reports this on Mike Bloomberg and protestors.

    Still, Bloomberg has grown weary of watching the plans for demonstrations grow and grow. So he is poking back. The firefighters and police can complain to Republicans about their contracts, but that is not "very intelligent," he opined. As for that request for a permit in Central Park?

    "You'd ruin the lawn," the mayor replied.

    Civil libertarians note that more than 20 groups have applied for march and rally permits, and the city has not approved one. The New York Civil Liberties Union filed more than 300 complaints against the city for its treatment of demonstrators at a march just before the invasion of Iraq in 2003. Since then, police have several times denied requests for high-visibility rallies.

    Posted by Eric at 07:10 PM | Comments (6)

    Bush to Asian Pacific Islanders: Forget About the Other Stuff

    Rather than having the Asian Pacific Islander American Advisory Commission focus on ways to improve quality of life issues, Bush has ordered the commission to focus only on business issues. From the DNC:

    Late last night, the Bush Administration quietly revised an Executive Order passed under the Clinton Administration that created an Advisory Commission charged with improving the overall quality of life for the Asian Pacific Islander American (APIA) Community. The revisions barred the Commission from focusing on areas such as health care, education and housing and instead limited its focus to solely "business expansion."

    Under the original order, the Advisory Commission was made up of 15 members, in turn representing various communities, such as "health, human services, education, housing, labor, transportation, economic and community development, civil rights and business." Under the new Bush rules only the "business enterprise community" will be represented, undermining the diversity of issues important to the APIA community.

    "The Bush Administration's proposal fails to meet the needs of the APIA community," said DNC Deputy-Chair Rep. Mike Honda (D-CA). "For President Bush to think that business priorities outweigh the broader needs of APIA groups — particularly issues such as access to health care and overcoming language barriers — demonstrates a striking unfamiliarity with APIA concerns. This Commission has done great work for millions of Americans, and by limiting its scope and impact President Bush has undermined those efforts."

    Posted by Eric at 06:59 PM | Comments (7)

    Bush to Asian Pacific Islanders: Forget About the Other Stuff

    Rather than having the Asian Pacific Islander American Advisory Commission focus on ways to improve quality of life issues, Bush has ordered the commission to focus only on business issues. From the DNC:

    Late last night, the Bush Administration quietly revised an Executive Order passed under the Clinton Administration that created an Advisory Commission charged with improving the overall quality of life for the Asian Pacific Islander American (APIA) Community. The revisions barred the Commission from focusing on areas such as health care, education and housing and instead limited its focus to solely "business expansion."

    Under the original order, the Advisory Commission was made up of 15 members, in turn representing various communities, such as "health, human services, education, housing, labor, transportation, economic and community development, civil rights and business." Under the new Bush rules only the "business enterprise community" will be represented, undermining the diversity of issues important to the APIA community.

    "The Bush Administration's proposal fails to meet the needs of the APIA community," said DNC Deputy-Chair Rep. Mike Honda (D-CA). "For President Bush to think that business priorities outweigh the broader needs of APIA groups — particularly issues such as access to health care and overcoming language barriers — demonstrates a striking unfamiliarity with APIA concerns. This Commission has done great work for millions of Americans, and by limiting its scope and impact President Bush has undermined those efforts."

    Posted by Eric at 06:59 PM | Comments (7)

    Comedy Monday

    "A Bush administration official told Congress yesterday that the war in Iraq could cost almost 60 billion dollars. President Bush said he plans to pay for it with a video series called 'Prison Guards Gone Wild." Conan O'Brien

    "Donald Rumsfeld made a surprise visit to Baghdad this week where he told reporters, 'If anyone thinks I'm here to throw water on a fire, they're wrong.' So, more bad news for Iraqi prisoners who are on fire." Jimmy Fallon

    "According to a new study on the best and worst US cities for dating, the best city for dating is Austin, Texas. And the worst city for dating, for the 7th year in a row, DateRapeville, Maine." Jimmy Fallon

    "Colorado has passed a law that gives every high school student in the state $2,400 to attend a university. The governor said, "it's my dream that every child has enough money to attend college...for 8 days"." Jimmy Fallon

    "Madonna has gone to court in an attempt to stop hikers from walking across her property in England. She should try playing Madonna music, that would keep people away." Tina Fey

    "President Bush delivered a commencement speech at a university in Wisconsin. A very inspirational speech. Apparently Bush told the students, 'You can do anything in life if your parents work hard enough.'" Conan O'Brien

    "Donald Rumsfeld made a surprise visit to Baghdad where he visited Abu Ghraib prison. Apparently, the visit was going well until Rumsfeld took out his camera and said, 'Hey, how about a few pictures?'" Conan O'Brien


    Dusty Scott: Ten Worst Album Covers of All Time.

    The Onion: Bush Vows To Pay Closer Attention To Needs Of Non-Presidents.

    The Onion: Woman At Farscape Convention Has Dangerously Inflated Self-Image.

    Humor Gazette: Bush says terrorists are behind Newsweek approval rating poll.

    whitehouse.org: Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld Briefs America's FREEDOM® -Crusaders on Kinder, Gentler New Guidelines for Interrogating Maybe-Terrorist Trash.

    whitehouse.org: Decorate Your Room With Vintage Ronald Reagan Health Posters! .

    RedefeatBush.com: Bush on Jeopardy

    Celebs without Makeup


    Click down for comics

    Posted by Eric at 06:56 PM | Comments (3)

    Comedy Monday

    "A Bush administration official told Congress yesterday that the war in Iraq could cost almost 60 billion dollars. President Bush said he plans to pay for it with a video series called 'Prison Guards Gone Wild." Conan O'Brien

    "Donald Rumsfeld made a surprise visit to Baghdad this week where he told reporters, 'If anyone thinks I'm here to throw water on a fire, they're wrong.' So, more bad news for Iraqi prisoners who are on fire." Jimmy Fallon

    "According to a new study on the best and worst US cities for dating, the best city for dating is Austin, Texas. And the worst city for dating, for the 7th year in a row, DateRapeville, Maine." Jimmy Fallon

    "Colorado has passed a law that gives every high school student in the state $2,400 to attend a university. The governor said, "it's my dream that every child has enough money to attend college...for 8 days"." Jimmy Fallon

    "Madonna has gone to court in an attempt to stop hikers from walking across her property in England. She should try playing Madonna music, that would keep people away." Tina Fey

    "President Bush delivered a commencement speech at a university in Wisconsin. A very inspirational speech. Apparently Bush told the students, 'You can do anything in life if your parents work hard enough.'" Conan O'Brien

    "Donald Rumsfeld made a surprise visit to Baghdad where he visited Abu Ghraib prison. Apparently, the visit was going well until Rumsfeld took out his camera and said, 'Hey, how about a few pictures?'" Conan O'Brien


    Dusty Scott: Ten Worst Album Covers of All Time.

    The Onion: Bush Vows To Pay Closer Attention To Needs Of Non-Presidents.

    The Onion: Woman At Farscape Convention Has Dangerously Inflated Self-Image.

    Humor Gazette: Bush says terrorists are behind Newsweek approval rating poll.

    whitehouse.org: Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld Briefs America's FREEDOM® -Crusaders on Kinder, Gentler New Guidelines for Interrogating Maybe-Terrorist Trash.

    whitehouse.org: Decorate Your Room With Vintage Ronald Reagan Health Posters! .

    RedefeatBush.com: Bush on Jeopardy

    Celebs without Makeup


    Click down for comics

    Posted by Eric at 06:56 PM | Comments (1)

    Hamster Numbers: Uninsured

    From covertheuninsuredweek.org:

  • "Recent Census Bureau data demonstrate that the problem of the uninsured has grown worse in 2002. According to figures released in September 2003, almost 44 million people—15.2 percent of the total U.S. population—were uninsured in 2002, up from 14.6 percent in the previous year. This was the largest single–year increase in both the number and rate of uninsured people in a decade."

  • "The percentage of the non-elderly population that is uninsured has climbed steadily from 13.7 percent in 1987 to 17.3 percent in 2002 (with a slight dip of no more than one percentage point around the turn of the century)."

    Posted by Eric at 06:26 PM | Comments (25)

    Hamster Numbers: Uninsured

    From covertheuninsuredweek.org:

  • "Recent Census Bureau data demonstrate that the problem of the uninsured has grown worse in 2002. According to figures released in September 2003, almost 44 million people—15.2 percent of the total U.S. population—were uninsured in 2002, up from 14.6 percent in the previous year. This was the largest single–year increase in both the number and rate of uninsured people in a decade."

  • "The percentage of the non-elderly population that is uninsured has climbed steadily from 13.7 percent in 1987 to 17.3 percent in 2002 (with a slight dip of no more than one percentage point around the turn of the century)."

    Posted by Eric at 06:26 PM | Comments (4)

    Democratic Senate Candidates Surging?

    The press release from the DSCC:

    Just this past week new polls show Democrats surging in key races across the country. Even before Tony Knowles hit the airwaves with a 60 second bio ad, he remains in a dead heat in Alaska (45% - 45%) despite his challenger's month long TV campaign. Congressman Joe Hoeffel is closing the gap on Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania, a race where Specter's $14 million spent on television has only helped to increase his negative approval ratings to 55%. Colorado Attorney General Ken Salazar continues to lead both Colorado GOP candidates, (Pete Coors 52% - 36%, Former congressman Bob Schaffer 48% - 37%), while in Illinois State Senator Barack Obama remains ahead of Jack Ryan by a sizable margin (44% - 28%). In Washington, Senator Patty Murray surged ahead of her second-tier challenger George Nethercutt, (54% - 31%). Two other candidates are showing movement in the polls, a new Kentucky poll clearly shows voters want someone other than Jim Bunning as their Senator as only 35% said they would vote to reelect him and a new poll in Ohio shows sitting Senator George Voinovich dipping under 50% against State Senator Eric Fingerhut (47% - 32%).


    Not only are our challengers gaining ground, but our most targeted incumbent senator, Democratic Leader Tom Daschle is in a strong position to win re-election against Republican challenger John Thune, based on a recent survey conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research. The statewide survey of 506 likely voters in South Dakota, conducted May 11-12, shows Daschle leading Thune 55-42 percent. In the poll, Daschle commands the bipartisan support needed to win in this Republican-leaning state. Daschle attracts 29 percent of Republican voters, while Thune holds just 68 percent of his Republican base. Daschle also leads Thune 54-43 percent among Independent voters. And Daschle's Democratic base is solidified, as he leads 91-7 percent among Democratic voters. Daschle's standing among South Dakota voters is quite strong. He is viewed favorably by 58 percent of South Dakotans, compared to just 31 percent who view him unfavorably.

    Posted by Eric at 06:19 PM | Comments (11)

    Democratic Senate Candidates Surging?

    The press release from the DSCC:

    Just this past week new polls show Democrats surging in key races across the country. Even before Tony Knowles hit the airwaves with a 60 second bio ad, he remains in a dead heat in Alaska (45% - 45%) despite his challenger's month long TV campaign. Congressman Joe Hoeffel is closing the gap on Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania, a race where Specter's $14 million spent on television has only helped to increase his negative approval ratings to 55%. Colorado Attorney General Ken Salazar continues to lead both Colorado GOP candidates, (Pete Coors 52% - 36%, Former congressman Bob Schaffer 48% - 37%), while in Illinois State Senator Barack Obama remains ahead of Jack Ryan by a sizable margin (44% - 28%). In Washington, Senator Patty Murray surged ahead of her second-tier challenger George Nethercutt, (54% - 31%). Two other candidates are showing movement in the polls, a new Kentucky poll clearly shows voters want someone other than Jim Bunning as their Senator as only 35% said they would vote to reelect him and a new poll in Ohio shows sitting Senator George Voinovich dipping under 50% against State Senator Eric Fingerhut (47% - 32%).


    Not only are our challengers gaining ground, but our most targeted incumbent senator, Democratic Leader Tom Daschle is in a strong position to win re-election against Republican challenger John Thune, based on a recent survey conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research. The statewide survey of 506 likely voters in South Dakota, conducted May 11-12, shows Daschle leading Thune 55-42 percent. In the poll, Daschle commands the bipartisan support needed to win in this Republican-leaning state. Daschle attracts 29 percent of Republican voters, while Thune holds just 68 percent of his Republican base. Daschle also leads Thune 54-43 percent among Independent voters. And Daschle's Democratic base is solidified, as he leads 91-7 percent among Democratic voters. Daschle's standing among South Dakota voters is quite strong. He is viewed favorably by 58 percent of South Dakotans, compared to just 31 percent who view him unfavorably.

    Posted by Eric at 06:19 PM | Comments (1)

    GOP to FEC Moore?

    I'm sure Michael Moore would love for this to happen, from the NYDN gossip page:

    We hear that Republican officials plan to complain to the Federal Election Commission that Miramax honchos Harvey and Bob Weinstein have violated campaign-finance laws by bankrolling Moore's film, according to one well-placed GOP source.

    "This is a blatant political ad in the guise of a documentary," says the source. "It's totally in contravention of the McCain-Feingold [soft-money ban]."

    An FEC spokesman said he had no record of complaints from the Republican National Committee or the Bush-Cheney campaign about Moore's film.

    Reps for both organizations denied filing protests.

    Posted by Eric at 06:05 PM | Comments (4)

    GOP to FEC Moore?

    I'm sure Michael Moore would love for this to happen, from the NYDN gossip page:

    We hear that Republican officials plan to complain to the Federal Election Commission that Miramax honchos Harvey and Bob Weinstein have violated campaign-finance laws by bankrolling Moore's film, according to one well-placed GOP source.

    "This is a blatant political ad in the guise of a documentary," says the source. "It's totally in contravention of the McCain-Feingold [soft-money ban]."

    An FEC spokesman said he had no record of complaints from the Republican National Committee or the Bush-Cheney campaign about Moore's film.

    Reps for both organizations denied filing protests.

    Posted by Eric at 06:05 PM | Comments (1)

    The Boss to Take on The Prez?

    The NYDN gossip section writes that Bruce Springsteen may try to grab attention from President Bush.

    Democratic operatives are buzzing that the Boss has been talking about staging a free concert somewhere on Sept. 2, when President Bush is due to address the Republican National Convention.

    Besides getting out the vote, Springsteen hopes to provide "counterprogramming to the message the Republicans will be broadcasting," says a source.

    A spokeswoman for Springsteen would only say, "There are no confirmed Bruce shows for 2004."

    Posted by Eric at 06:03 PM | Comments (10)

    The Boss to Take on The Prez?

    The NYDN gossip section writes that Bruce Springsteen may try to grab attention from President Bush.

    Democratic operatives are buzzing that the Boss has been talking about staging a free concert somewhere on Sept. 2, when President Bush is due to address the Republican National Convention.

    Besides getting out the vote, Springsteen hopes to provide "counterprogramming to the message the Republicans will be broadcasting," says a source.

    A spokeswoman for Springsteen would only say, "There are no confirmed Bruce shows for 2004."

    Posted by Eric at 06:03 PM | Comments (2)

    Powell: I was misled by CIA

    Claims the Secretary of State, whose credibility is currently shattered. NY Daily News:

    Secretary of State Powell said yesterday that some of the intelligence and evidence of banned weapons that he was fed were "deliberately misleading."
    Powell said he's "very concerned" about how the CIA prepared him ahead of his now-infamous UN speech in February 2003 that made America's case for war with Iraq.

    "It turned out that the sourcing was inaccurate and wrong and, in some cases, deliberately misleading," he told NBC's "Meet the Press."

    "And for that, I am disappointed and I regret it," he added.

    Posted by Eric at 06:00 PM | Comments (97)

    Powell: I was misled by CIA

    Claims the Secretary of State, whose credibility is currently shattered. NY Daily News:

    Secretary of State Powell said yesterday that some of the intelligence and evidence of banned weapons that he was fed were "deliberately misleading."
    Powell said he's "very concerned" about how the CIA prepared him ahead of his now-infamous UN speech in February 2003 that made America's case for war with Iraq.

    "It turned out that the sourcing was inaccurate and wrong and, in some cases, deliberately misleading," he told NBC's "Meet the Press."

    "And for that, I am disappointed and I regret it," he added.

    Posted by Eric at 06:00 PM | Comments (5)

    Gonzales Doubletalk on the Geneva Convention

    From Judd C. Legum of the Center for American Progress:

    Last week, White House Counsel Alberto Gonzales forcefully denied that the Bush administration failed to support the Geneva treaties. But Gonzales’ recent statements are belied by his January 2002 memo to the President.

    GONZALES SAYS ADMINISTRATION IS A 'STRONG SUPPORTER OF GENEVA CONVENTIONS: "At the same time, President Bush recognized that our nation will continue to be a strong supporter of the Geneva treaties. The president also reaffirmed our policy in the United States armed forces to treat Al Qaeda and Taliban detainees at Guantánamo Bay humanely and, to the extent appropriate and consistent with military necessity, in keeping with the principles of the Third Geneva Convention."

    - Alberto Gonzales, 5/15/04 (NYT Op-Ed)

    VERSUS

    GONZALES SAYS GENEVA RESTRICTIONS ARE OBSOLETE: "The nature of the new war places a high premium on other factors, such as the ability to quickly obtain information from captured terrorists and their sponsors in order to avoid further atrocities against American civilians...In my judgment, this new paradigm renders obsolete Geneva's strict limitations on questioning of enemy prisoners and renders quaint some of its provisions."

    - Alberto Gonzales, 1/25/02 (Memorandum to the President, as reported in Newsweek 5/16/04)

    Posted by Eric at 05:02 PM | Comments (8)

    Gonzales Doubletalk on the Geneva Convention

    From Judd C. Legum of the Center for American Progress:

    Last week, White House Counsel Alberto Gonzales forcefully denied that the Bush administration failed to support the Geneva treaties. But Gonzales’ recent statements are belied by his January 2002 memo to the President.

    GONZALES SAYS ADMINISTRATION IS A 'STRONG SUPPORTER OF GENEVA CONVENTIONS: "At the same time, President Bush recognized that our nation will continue to be a strong supporter of the Geneva treaties. The president also reaffirmed our policy in the United States armed forces to treat Al Qaeda and Taliban detainees at Guantánamo Bay humanely and, to the extent appropriate and consistent with military necessity, in keeping with the principles of the Third Geneva Convention."

    - Alberto Gonzales, 5/15/04 (NYT Op-Ed)

    VERSUS

    GONZALES SAYS GENEVA RESTRICTIONS ARE OBSOLETE: "The nature of the new war places a high premium on other factors, such as the ability to quickly obtain information from captured terrorists and their sponsors in order to avoid further atrocities against American civilians...In my judgment, this new paradigm renders obsolete Geneva's strict limitations on questioning of enemy prisoners and renders quaint some of its provisions."

    - Alberto Gonzales, 1/25/02 (Memorandum to the President, as reported in Newsweek 5/16/04)

    Posted by Eric at 05:02 PM | Comments (2)

    May 16, 2004

    Sunday

    New Yorker. THE GRAY ZONE: How a secret Pentagon program came to Abu Ghraib
    AP. 28 Iraqis Killed in Recent Clashes
    AP. Two Iraqi Women Killed in Bus Attack
    Gen. Wesley Clark. Broken Engagement: The strategy that won the Cold War could help bring democracy to the Middle East-- if only the Bush hawks understood it
    LAT. Ad watch: Bush ads accuse Kerry of flip-flop on education
    AP. Rove praises Illinois GOP for voter registration, touts Bush's record
    AP. Powell criticizes Arab governments; Secretary of state says response to Berg killing insufficient
    Houston Chronicle. New books due out soon not likely Bush favorites
    Reuters. Kerry Shifts Campaign Focus from Iraq to Economy
    NYT. Bush Letter Sees Promise of Stem Cells
    NYT. Accused G.I.'s Try to Shift Blame in Prison Abuse
    WP. Pioneers Fill War Chest, Then Capitalize
    AP. Poll: Bush Job Approval Hits New Low
    WP. Massachusetts Clergy Are Divided On Eve of Historic Same-Sex Unions
    Reuters. From GOP, Zero Tolerance For Democratic War Critics
    WP. Tobacco States Fume Over Bush Remarks: President Says He Opposes a Buyout for Growers, Angering Some From His Party
    Reuters. Massachusetts to allow same-sex marriages starting Monday
    CNN. Pentagon denies prison scandal stems from secret program gone awry

    Posted by Eric at 11:37 PM | Comments (4)

    Sunday

    New Yorker. THE GRAY ZONE: How a secret Pentagon program came to Abu Ghraib
    AP. 28 Iraqis Killed in Recent Clashes
    AP. Two Iraqi Women Killed in Bus Attack
    Gen. Wesley Clark. Broken Engagement: The strategy that won the Cold War could help bring democracy to the Middle East-- if only the Bush hawks understood it
    LAT. Ad watch: Bush ads accuse Kerry of flip-flop on education
    AP. Rove praises Illinois GOP for voter registration, touts Bush's record
    AP. Powell criticizes Arab governments; Secretary of state says response to Berg killing insufficient
    Houston Chronicle. New books due out soon not likely Bush favorites
    Reuters. Kerry Shifts Campaign Focus from Iraq to Economy
    NYT. Bush Letter Sees Promise of Stem Cells
    NYT. Accused G.I.'s Try to Shift Blame in Prison Abuse
    WP. Pioneers Fill War Chest, Then Capitalize
    AP. Poll: Bush Job Approval Hits New Low
    WP. Massachusetts Clergy Are Divided On Eve of Historic Same-Sex Unions
    Reuters. From GOP, Zero Tolerance For Democratic War Critics
    WP. Tobacco States Fume Over Bush Remarks: President Says He Opposes a Buyout for Growers, Angering Some From His Party
    Reuters. Massachusetts to allow same-sex marriages starting Monday
    CNN. Pentagon denies prison scandal stems from secret program gone awry

    Posted by Eric at 11:37 PM | Comments (1)

    Military Times: "failure of leadership at the highest levels"

    From the Military Times editorial board:

    But the folks in the Pentagon are talking about the wrong morons.

    There is no excuse for the behavior displayed by soldiers in the now-infamous pictures and an even more damning report by Army Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba. Every soldier involved should be ashamed.

    But while responsibility begins with the six soldiers facing criminal charges, it extends all the way up the chain of command to the highest reaches of the military hierarchy and its civilian leadership.

    The entire affair is a failure of leadership from start to finish. From the moment they are captured, prisoners are hooded, shackled and isolated. The message to the troops: Anything goes.

    In addition to the scores of prisoners who were humiliated and demeaned, at least 14 have died in custody in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Army has ruled at least two of those homicides. This is not the way a free people keeps its captives or wins the hearts and minds of a suspicious world ...

    This was not just a failure of leadership at the local command level. This was a failure that ran straight to the top. Accountability here is essential — even if that means relieving top leaders from duty in a time of war.

    Posted by Eric at 02:59 PM | Comments (3)

    Military Times: "failure of leadership at the highest levels"

    From the Military Times editorial board:

    But the folks in the Pentagon are talking about the wrong morons.

    There is no excuse for the behavior displayed by soldiers in the now-infamous pictures and an even more damning report by Army Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba. Every soldier involved should be ashamed.

    But while responsibility begins with the six soldiers facing criminal charges, it extends all the way up the chain of command to the highest reaches of the military hierarchy and its civilian leadership.

    The entire affair is a failure of leadership from start to finish. From the moment they are captured, prisoners are hooded, shackled and isolated. The message to the troops: Anything goes.

    In addition to the scores of prisoners who were humiliated and demeaned, at least 14 have died in custody in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Army has ruled at least two of those homicides. This is not the way a free people keeps its captives or wins the hearts and minds of a suspicious world ...

    This was not just a failure of leadership at the local command level. This was a failure that ran straight to the top. Accountability here is essential — even if that means relieving top leaders from duty in a time of war.

    Posted by Eric at 02:59 PM | Comments (0)

    May 15, 2004

    The Unpopular President: Bush Rating Hits New Low

    From a Newsweek poll:

    May 15 - As his administration grapples with the fallout from the Iraqi prisoner abuse scandal, President George W. Bush’s approval ratings have dropped to 42 percent, according to the latest NEWSWEEK poll, a low for his presidency. Fifty-seven percent say they disapprove of Bush’s handling of the war in Iraq. And 62 percent say they are dissatisfied with the way things are going in the United States, a number that has been steadily increasing since April, 2003, when it was 41 percent.
    On the presidential race:
    Still, when pitted in a hypothetical two-way race with Sen. John Kerry, the presumptive Democratic Party nominee, Bush holds his own. Forty-five percent of Americans say they would vote for Bush; 46 percent say they would support Kerry and 9 percent remain undecided.

    Posted by Eric at 07:42 PM | Comments (6)

    The Unpopular President: Bush Rating Hits New Low

    From a Newsweek poll:

    May 15 - As his administration grapples with the fallout from the Iraqi prisoner abuse scandal, President George W. Bush’s approval ratings have dropped to 42 percent, according to the latest NEWSWEEK poll, a low for his presidency. Fifty-seven percent say they disapprove of Bush’s handling of the war in Iraq. And 62 percent say they are dissatisfied with the way things are going in the United States, a number that has been steadily increasing since April, 2003, when it was 41 percent.
    On the presidential race:
    Still, when pitted in a hypothetical two-way race with Sen. John Kerry, the presumptive Democratic Party nominee, Bush holds his own. Forty-five percent of Americans say they would vote for Bush; 46 percent say they would support Kerry and 9 percent remain undecided.

    Posted by Eric at 07:42 PM | Comments (3)

    Lying Liar: New Yorker Magazine Says Rumsfeld and Aide Backed Harsh Tactics

    More poop to hit the fan shortly. NY Times:

    The article, by Seymour M. Hersh, reports that Mr. Rumsfeld and Stephen Cambone, the undersecretary of defense for intelligence, approved the use of the tougher interrogation techniques in Iraq in 2003 in an effort to extract better information from Iraqi prisoners to counter the growing insurgency threat in the country.

    Across the Bush administration, officials on Saturday disputed several of the critical details in Mr. Hersh's article. They said that there was no high-level decision or command that they were aware of to use highly coercive interrogation techniques on Iraqi prisoners.

    Mr. Rumsfeld, who has apologized for the abuses, has said that the prison abuses were conducted by lower-level military forces without the approval of senior commanders.

    Sign the DCCC's petition to have Rummy fired.

    Posted by Eric at 07:24 PM | Comments (41)

    Lying Liar: New Yorker Magazine Says Rumsfeld and Aide Backed Harsh Tactics

    More poop to hit the fan shortly. NY Times:

    The article, by Seymour M. Hersh, reports that Mr. Rumsfeld and Stephen Cambone, the undersecretary of defense for intelligence, approved the use of the tougher interrogation techniques in Iraq in 2003 in an effort to extract better information from Iraqi prisoners to counter the growing insurgency threat in the country.

    Across the Bush administration, officials on Saturday disputed several of the critical details in Mr. Hersh's article. They said that there was no high-level decision or command that they were aware of to use highly coercive interrogation techniques on Iraqi prisoners.

    Mr. Rumsfeld, who has apologized for the abuses, has said that the prison abuses were conducted by lower-level military forces without the approval of senior commanders.

    Sign the DCCC's petition to have Rummy fired.

    Posted by Eric at 07:24 PM | Comments (5)

    New Hamster Supporter

    Show your liberalism!

    "T-shirts, political buttons, bumper stickers, window decals and more." From Idiots4Bush.com.

    Posted by Eric at 07:19 PM | Comments (485)

    New Hamster Supporter

    Show your liberalism!

    "T-shirts, political buttons, bumper stickers, window decals and more." From Idiots4Bush.com.

    Posted by Eric at 07:19 PM | Comments (1)

    May 14, 2004

    Friday

    News
    Reuters. US Tanks Thrust Into Cemetery in Iraq Holy City
    CNN. FEC to Sharpton: Return $100,000
    AP. Black Lawmakers Talk With Kerry Aides
    BaltSun. Abuse incident foreshadowed Abu Ghraib
    WP. Britons Allege Guantanamo Abuse in Letter to Bush
    NYT. Report Calls for Accountability and Services to Deal With Sexual Assaults in Military
    NYT. C.I.A. Says Berg's Killer Was Very Probably Zarqawi
    NYT. U.S. Soldier Paints a Scene of Eager Mayhem at Iraqi Prison
    Reuters. EPA inspector to review power plant mercury rule
    USAT. Mass. preparing for a rush of gay weddings
    NYT. Gays Elsewhere Eye Marriage Massachusetts Style
    LAT. Confidence in Bush, Iraq War Is Sinking, Polls Show
    AP. War costs exceed estimates, Wolfowitz admits
    WP. Wolfowitz Draws Democrats' Ire: Hearing on Iraq Spending Request Becomes Attack on Approach to War
    WP. House Backs 10% Tax Bracket
    BGlobe. Pragmatism drives N.H. Naderites to Kerry
    BGlobe. Convention head downplays concerns
    AP. Bush raises $200m, far beyond Kerry
    BBC. Bush team reworks Iraq spending
    AP. Senators oppose giving Bush control of $25 billion for Iraq, Afghanistan
    CBS. How To Spend A Billion Dollars

    Commentary
    SFC. Connect the fiscal dots
    Scot Lehigh. Does Massachusetts really need a death penalty?
    Jules Witcover. Kucinich battles on
    EJ Dionne Jr. Don't Discount the Middle
    Jason Vest. Trust Busted: How American moral authority died, who killed it, and why nincompoops like James Inhofe will never learn.
    Terence Samuel. War Words: If you're explaining, you're losing. Look who's doing a lot of explaining on Capitol Hill these days.
    Frank Ackerman, Kerry Smith and Lisa Heinzerling. Choice Cuts: Cost-benefit analysis is often used to support industry wish lists. Should we blame the method or the masters?
    Todd Gitlin. Think Again: Oops!
    Sheryll Cashin. Fifty Years after Brown, the American Dilemma Continues
    Sean Aday. Taking Off the Blinders: We're the good guys, right?
    Eyal Press. Even Conservatives Are Wondering: Is Bush One of Us?
    Arianna Huffington. See Rummy spin. Spin, Rummy, spin
    Krugman. A Crude Shock
    NYT. The Wrong Direction

    Posted by Eric at 11:49 PM | Comments (14)

    Friday

    News
    Reuters. US Tanks Thrust Into Cemetery in Iraq Holy City
    CNN. FEC to Sharpton: Return $100,000
    AP. Black Lawmakers Talk With Kerry Aides
    BaltSun. Abuse incident foreshadowed Abu Ghraib
    WP. Britons Allege Guantanamo Abuse in Letter to Bush
    NYT. Report Calls for Accountability and Services to Deal With Sexual Assaults in Military
    NYT. C.I.A. Says Berg's Killer Was Very Probably Zarqawi
    NYT. U.S. Soldier Paints a Scene of Eager Mayhem at Iraqi Prison
    Reuters. EPA inspector to review power plant mercury rule
    USAT. Mass. preparing for a rush of gay weddings
    NYT. Gays Elsewhere Eye Marriage Massachusetts Style
    LAT. Confidence in Bush, Iraq War Is Sinking, Polls Show
    AP. War costs exceed estimates, Wolfowitz admits
    WP. Wolfowitz Draws Democrats' Ire: Hearing on Iraq Spending Request Becomes Attack on Approach to War
    WP. House Backs 10% Tax Bracket
    BGlobe. Pragmatism drives N.H. Naderites to Kerry
    BGlobe. Convention head downplays concerns
    AP. Bush raises $200m, far beyond Kerry
    BBC. Bush team reworks Iraq spending
    AP. Senators oppose giving Bush control of $25 billion for Iraq, Afghanistan
    CBS. How To Spend A Billion Dollars

    Commentary
    SFC. Connect the fiscal dots
    Scot Lehigh. Does Massachusetts really need a death penalty?
    Jules Witcover. Kucinich battles on
    EJ Dionne Jr. Don't Discount the Middle
    Jason Vest. Trust Busted: How American moral authority died, who killed it, and why nincompoops like James Inhofe will never learn.
    Terence Samuel. War Words: If you're explaining, you're losing. Look who's doing a lot of explaining on Capitol Hill these days.
    Frank Ackerman, Kerry Smith and Lisa Heinzerling. Choice Cuts: Cost-benefit analysis is often used to support industry wish lists. Should we blame the method or the masters?
    Todd Gitlin. Think Again: Oops!
    Sheryll Cashin. Fifty Years after Brown, the American Dilemma Continues
    Sean Aday. Taking Off the Blinders: We're the good guys, right?
    Eyal Press. Even Conservatives Are Wondering: Is Bush One of Us?
    Arianna Huffington. See Rummy spin. Spin, Rummy, spin
    Krugman. A Crude Shock
    NYT. The Wrong Direction

    Posted by Eric at 11:49 PM | Comments (0)

    Oil Prices to New High

    AP.

    Posted by Eric at 05:54 PM | Comments (5)

    Oil Prices to New High

    AP.

    Posted by Eric at 05:54 PM | Comments (0)

    Cops to Hate America

    Endorses John Kerry over President Bush.

    "After three and a half years of disappointing leadership under George Bush, we need to change course in November and elect a president with a real record of supporting police officers and a lifetime of standing with law enforcement," IBPO President David Holway said in a statement provided by the Kerry campaign.

    The union endorsed Bill Clinton in 1992 and 1996. Kerry scheduled a round-table discussion with members of the group on Friday to talk about law enforcement issues.

    Ah, they're just another union that's in bed with Democrats.
    Presumptive Democratic nominee John Kerry on Friday collected the endorsement of the International Brotherhood of Police Officers, a police union that backed President Bush in the 2000 election.
    Oh SNAP!

    Posted by Eric at 02:46 PM | Comments (10)

    Cops to Hate America

    Endorses John Kerry over President Bush.

    "After three and a half years of disappointing leadership under George Bush, we need to change course in November and elect a president with a real record of supporting police officers and a lifetime of standing with law enforcement," IBPO President David Holway said in a statement provided by the Kerry campaign.

    The union endorsed Bill Clinton in 1992 and 1996. Kerry scheduled a round-table discussion with members of the group on Friday to talk about law enforcement issues.

    Ah, they're just another union that's in bed with Democrats.
    Presumptive Democratic nominee John Kerry on Friday collected the endorsement of the International Brotherhood of Police Officers, a police union that backed President Bush in the 2000 election.
    Oh SNAP!

    Posted by Eric at 02:46 PM | Comments (3)

    Rush on the Offensive: New Ads Attack Prosecutor

    Rush Limbaugh is going on the offensive against the Florida prosecutor who is overseeing his drug case. From NYDN:

    Embattled right-wing radio jock Rush Limbaugh took out two newspaper ads yesterday to attack the Florida prosecutor probing whether he bought black-market painkillers.
    In them, Limbaugh reprinted an editorial from the conservative Washington Times that called the case against him "shaky."

    Limbaugh, who has fessed up to his drug habit, claims Palm Beach State Attorney Barry Krischer is persecuting him for political reasons. Krischer, a Democrat, had no immediate comment on the ads, which ran in the Palm Beach Post and South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

    Meanwhile, Media Matters is running a different sort of ads: spotlighting Rush's shameful rhetoric about the prison abuse scandal.

    Posted by Eric at 02:27 PM | Comments (36)

    Rush on the Offensive: New Ads Attack Prosecutor

    Rush Limbaugh is going on the offensive against the Florida prosecutor who is overseeing his drug case. From NYDN:

    Embattled right-wing radio jock Rush Limbaugh took out two newspaper ads yesterday to attack the Florida prosecutor probing whether he bought black-market painkillers.
    In them, Limbaugh reprinted an editorial from the conservative Washington Times that called the case against him "shaky."

    Limbaugh, who has fessed up to his drug habit, claims Palm Beach State Attorney Barry Krischer is persecuting him for political reasons. Krischer, a Democrat, had no immediate comment on the ads, which ran in the Palm Beach Post and South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

    Meanwhile, Media Matters is running a different sort of ads: spotlighting Rush's shameful rhetoric about the prison abuse scandal.

    Posted by Eric at 02:27 PM | Comments (3)

    Family Research Council Points the Fingers

    Yes, because before MTV and pornography, this type of stuff never happened. From the Family Research Council:

    "As Chuck Colson pointed out at FRC's inaugural Pastors' Briefing yesterday, when you mix young people who grew up on a steady diet of MTV and pornography with a prison environment, you get the abuse at Abu Ghriab."

    Posted by Eric at 01:21 PM | Comments (11)

    Family Research Council Points the Fingers

    Yes, because before MTV and pornography, this type of stuff never happened. From the Family Research Council:

    "As Chuck Colson pointed out at FRC's inaugural Pastors' Briefing yesterday, when you mix young people who grew up on a steady diet of MTV and pornography with a prison environment, you get the abuse at Abu Ghriab."

    Posted by Eric at 01:21 PM | Comments (0)

    Michael Savage: Funny Guy

    Michael Savage, embraced conservative commentator. Media Matters:

    And I think there should be no mercy shown to these sub-humans. I believe that a thousand of them should be killed tomorrow. I think a thousand of them held in the Iraqi prison should be given 24 hour -- a trial and executed. I think they need to be shown that we are not going to roll over to them. It won't happen. It won't happen because of the CBS Communists. It won't happen because of the CNN traitors. I won't happen because of the MSNBC empty heads. And we the people are the ones who are going to suffer today. ...

    Instead of putting joysticks, I would have liked to have seen dynamite put in their orifices and they should be dropped from airplanes. How's that? You like that one? Go call somebody that you want to report me to, see if I care. They should put dynamite in their behinds and drop them from 35,000 feet, the whole pack of scum out of that jail. Thank you CBS. Thank you New Yorker. Thank you Carl Levin. Thank you Ted Kennedy. Thank you Hillary Clinton. I'm sure that Mr. Berg's parents appreciate what you've done for them. I'll be right back.

    Yeah, "Mr. Berg's parents" are really going after those Democrats.

    Posted by Eric at 12:57 PM | Comments (37)

    Michael Savage: Funny Guy

    Michael Savage, embraced conservative commentator. Media Matters:

    And I think there should be no mercy shown to these sub-humans. I believe that a thousand of them should be killed tomorrow. I think a thousand of them held in the Iraqi prison should be given 24 hour -- a trial and executed. I think they need to be shown that we are not going to roll over to them. It won't happen. It won't happen because of the CBS Communists. It won't happen because of the CNN traitors. I won't happen because of the MSNBC empty heads. And we the people are the ones who are going to suffer today. ...

    Instead of putting joysticks, I would have liked to have seen dynamite put in their orifices and they should be dropped from airplanes. How's that? You like that one? Go call somebody that you want to report me to, see if I care. They should put dynamite in their behinds and drop them from 35,000 feet, the whole pack of scum out of that jail. Thank you CBS. Thank you New Yorker. Thank you Carl Levin. Thank you Ted Kennedy. Thank you Hillary Clinton. I'm sure that Mr. Berg's parents appreciate what you've done for them. I'll be right back.

    Yeah, "Mr. Berg's parents" are really going after those Democrats.

    Posted by Eric at 12:57 PM | Comments (4)

    Disenfranchisement Starts Young: Officials Attempting to Shaft Young Voters

    Some polls indicate that young voters "favor John Kerry by as many as ten points." Will those young voters be turned away from the polls this election? Rolling Stone:

    But in recent years, many election officials have been building a variety of hurdles to make it more difficult for students to register and vote. In May 2002, the city council in Saratoga Springs, New York, shut down a polling place at Skidmore College, forcing students to travel off-campus to vote. That same year, a judge in Arkansas tried to block 1,000 students at Ouachita Baptist University and Henderson State University from casting ballots, ruling that they must vote in their hometowns -- even though the deadline for absentee ballots had already passed. And when students from the University of New Hampshire showed up at the polls on Election Day that year, poll workers handed them a pamphlet warning them that voting locally could affect their financial aid and taxes. The scare tactic worked: Many students left without voting.

    Refusing to register students is "a blatant form of disenfranchisement," says Jennifer Weiser, who advocates for young voters as associate counsel of the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University. "It's clearly illegal."

    In some cases, election officials simply don't seem to understand the law. Jehmu Greene, president of Rock the Vote, was surprised by the response when her group called state election offices in Oregon and Washington about laws regarding student voting: "They were clueless about the issue," says Greene.

    In many cases, however, there's more than ignorance at work. In small college towns, students often outnumber all other voters combined -- raising fears that they could determine the outcome of local elections. The colonial town of Williamsburg, Virginia, has only 6,000 registered voters -- and 7,600 students at the College of William and Mary. In January, when campus leaders began pushing students to register and vote, the city responded by requiring every student to fill out a two-page questionnaire detailing everything from their personal finances to where their car is registered. Of an estimated 150 students who completed questionnaires, only four have been registered. "They don't want students involved," says Rob Forrest, who quit school and moved off campus so he could run for a seat on the city council. "It's a cop-out to interpret the law like this -- and if the law says that we're not supposed to get involved, then the law is wrong."

    Posted by Eric at 10:25 AM | Comments (23)

    Disenfranchisement Starts Young: Officials Attempting to Shaft Young Voters

    Some polls indicate that young voters "favor John Kerry by as many as ten points." Will those young voters be turned away from the polls this election? Rolling Stone:

    But in recent years, many election officials have been building a variety of hurdles to make it more difficult for students to register and vote. In May 2002, the city council in Saratoga Springs, New York, shut down a polling place at Skidmore College, forcing students to travel off-campus to vote. That same year, a judge in Arkansas tried to block 1,000 students at Ouachita Baptist University and Henderson State University from casting ballots, ruling that they must vote in their hometowns -- even though the deadline for absentee ballots had already passed. And when students from the University of New Hampshire showed up at the polls on Election Day that year, poll workers handed them a pamphlet warning them that voting locally could affect their financial aid and taxes. The scare tactic worked: Many students left without voting.

    Refusing to register students is "a blatant form of disenfranchisement," says Jennifer Weiser, who advocates for young voters as associate counsel of the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University. "It's clearly illegal."

    In some cases, election officials simply don't seem to understand the law. Jehmu Greene, president of Rock the Vote, was surprised by the response when her group called state election offices in Oregon and Washington about laws regarding student voting: "They were clueless about the issue," says Greene.

    In many cases, however, there's more than ignorance at work. In small college towns, students often outnumber all other voters combined -- raising fears that they could determine the outcome of local elections. The colonial town of Williamsburg, Virginia, has only 6,000 registered voters -- and 7,600 students at the College of William and Mary. In January, when campus leaders began pushing students to register and vote, the city responded by requiring every student to fill out a two-page questionnaire detailing everything from their personal finances to where their car is registered. Of an estimated 150 students who completed questionnaires, only four have been registered. "They don't want students involved," says Rob Forrest, who quit school and moved off campus so he could run for a seat on the city council. "It's a cop-out to interpret the law like this -- and if the law says that we're not supposed to get involved, then the law is wrong."

    Posted by Eric at 10:25 AM | Comments (0)

    Victim of Drudge Smear to Write Back?

    Alexandra Polier may write about her experience at the receiving end of the Right-wing smear machine, reports Grove in the NYDN:

    Word from Nairobi, Kenya - where Polier has been living with the family of her Israeli fiancé, Yaron Schwartzman - is that she's toiling on an epic essay about her experiences at the center of a political firestorm.

    According to an informed source, the former Associated Press intern is writing her account - for which New York magazine is paying $10,000 - of how it felt to be on the wrong side of the reporter-subject equation .... Polier was hounded by media lowlifes and guttersnipe gossip columnists (me, perhaps?) who published provocative details of a Friendster.com profile in which she - or someone claiming to be her - was described as "just another hot piece of a-- with a philosophy degree."

    My informant tells me: "She is also going to detail her work for Kerry and, possibly, her relationship with one of his staffers, not the candidate."

    Posted by Eric at 10:11 AM | Comments (7)

    Victim of Drudge Smear to Write Back?

    Alexandra Polier may write about her experience at the receiving end of the Right-wing smear machine, reports Grove in the NYDN:

    Word from Nairobi, Kenya - where Polier has been living with the family of her Israeli fiancé, Yaron Schwartzman - is that she's toiling on an epic essay about her experiences at the center of a political firestorm.

    According to an informed source, the former Associated Press intern is writing her account - for which New York magazine is paying $10,000 - of how it felt to be on the wrong side of the reporter-subject equation .... Polier was hounded by media lowlifes and guttersnipe gossip columnists (me, perhaps?) who published provocative details of a Friendster.com profile in which she - or someone claiming to be her - was described as "just another hot piece of a-- with a philosophy degree."

    My informant tells me: "She is also going to detail her work for Kerry and, possibly, her relationship with one of his staffers, not the candidate."

    Posted by Eric at 10:11 AM | Comments (2)

    Hillary Clinton Killed Brit Hume's Son

    In an interview with David Horowitz's Front Page Magazine, the former editor of Front Page Magazine and NY Post reporter Richard Poe:

    Hillary's Secret War tells us that Hillary personally led a secret police force from her office in the White House. Tell us about your proof and evidence.

    Poe: The operations of Hillary’s secret police have been copiously documented, to the point where the topic can hardly be called controversial any longer.

    During the Clinton years, journalists who probed too deeply into Clinton scandals ran terrible risks. Journalists were beaten, wiretapped, framed on criminal charges, fired and blacklisted. They experienced burglaries, IRS audits, smear campaigns and White-House-orchestrated lawsuits.

    Some may have paid the ultimate price. In February, 1998, just as the Clinton impeachment was gathering steam, Sandy Hume, the 28-year-old son of Fox News anchorman Brit Hume, suddenly turned up dead of a gunshot to the head. He was covering the U.S. Congress for the magazine The Hill, and was known for his excellent sources among Republican insiders. Sandy Hume supposedly committed suicide, but friends and associates have questioned the official story.

    Some of the White House “secret police” were private detectives, such as Terry Lenzner, Jack Palladino and Anthony Pellicano. Others were Clinton loyalists embedded in federal intelligence and law enforcement agencies such as the FBI, the CIA, the IRS, the NTSB and so on. Many of these people are still in place, and still doing the Clintons’ dirty work. I call them the Shadow Team.

    You can tell that the Clinton intimidation squad worked, since there were no Clinton investigative cover stories, expose books, media-induced scandals, or any sort of uber media hype about the Clinton White House.

    Can't make this stuff up.

    Posted by Eric at 04:17 AM | Comments (34)

    Hillary Clinton Killed Brit Hume's Son

    In an interview with David Horowitz's Front Page Magazine, the former editor of Front Page Magazine and NY Post reporter Richard Poe:

    Hillary's Secret War tells us that Hillary personally led a secret police force from her office in the White House. Tell us about your proof and evidence.

    Poe: The operations of Hillary’s secret police have been copiously documented, to the point where the topic can hardly be called controversial any longer.

    During the Clinton years, journalists who probed too deeply into Clinton scandals ran terrible risks. Journalists were beaten, wiretapped, framed on criminal charges, fired and blacklisted. They experienced burglaries, IRS audits, smear campaigns and White-House-orchestrated lawsuits.

    Some may have paid the ultimate price. In February, 1998, just as the Clinton impeachment was gathering steam, Sandy Hume, the 28-year-old son of Fox News anchorman Brit Hume, suddenly turned up dead of a gunshot to the head. He was covering the U.S. Congress for the magazine The Hill, and was known for his excellent sources among Republican insiders. Sandy Hume supposedly committed suicide, but friends and associates have questioned the official story.

    Some of the White House “secret police” were private detectives, such as Terry Lenzner, Jack Palladino and Anthony Pellicano. Others were Clinton loyalists embedded in federal intelligence and law enforcement agencies such as the FBI, the CIA, the IRS, the NTSB and so on. Many of these people are still in place, and still doing the Clintons’ dirty work. I call them the Shadow Team.

    You can tell that the Clinton intimidation squad worked, since there were no Clinton investigative cover stories, expose books, media-induced scandals, or any sort of uber media hype about the Clinton White House.

    Can't make this stuff up.

    Posted by Eric at 04:17 AM | Comments (4)

    Hamster Numbers: Drug Laws

    From the Western Prison Project:

    Number of antitrust cases filed in U.S. District Courts, 1975: 1,467
    Number of antitrust cases filed in U.S. District Courts, 2000: 901
    Number of sentences given for drug law violations in federal court in 1975: 4,887
    Number of sentences given for drug law violations in federal court in 2000: 23,120
    Number of years of imprisonment given to federal drug offenders convicted in 1999: 152,528

    Posted by Eric at 03:53 AM | Comments (38)

    Hamster Numbers: Drug Laws

    From the Western Prison Project:

    Number of antitrust cases filed in U.S. District Courts, 1975: 1,467
    Number of antitrust cases filed in U.S. District Courts, 2000: 901
    Number of sentences given for drug law violations in federal court in 1975: 4,887
    Number of sentences given for drug law violations in federal court in 2000: 23,120
    Number of years of imprisonment given to federal drug offenders convicted in 1999: 152,528

    Posted by Eric at 03:53 AM | Comments (0)

    Aaron Russo for President

    Could he siphon off votes from libertarian Republicans (who are poorly represented by the GOP)? MyDD and Daily Kos on Russo.

    Posted by Eric at 02:38 AM | Comments (15)

    Aaron Russo for President

    Could he siphon off votes from libertarian Republicans (who are poorly represented by the GOP)? MyDD and Daily Kos on Russo.

    Posted by Eric at 02:38 AM | Comments (2)

    Rumfeld the Survivor

    At first Rumsfeld was afraid, he was petrified. But he's apparently a survivor. (link via Counterspin):

    THE CRASSEST THING EVER SAID BY A MEMBER OF THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION: Today, speaking before hundreds of beleaguered American soldiers at a town hall meeting at Camp Victory in Baghdad, Donald Rumsfeld actually had the nerve to refer to his bureaucratic problems in Washington (you know, that torture thing) and say--again, in front of brave U.S. troops who put their lives and health on the line every day in Iraq--"I'm a survivor."

    I wonder if it occurred to Rumsfeld how appalling his statement was when he heard questions like these from our troops:

    Q: Sir, my unit, the 2nd Brigade -- (inaudible) -- Cav, we have five out of the six red zones in this country. And with the up- armored humvees, the new -- (off mike) -- humvees they're bringing over with the -- (inaudible) -- those doors are not as good as the ones on the up-armored humvees -- (inaudible). We even lost quite -- we lost some soldiers due to them, and we're trying to make a change -- (inaudible). The question is, are we going to get more up-armored humvees?

    And the second question I wanted to ask is, they have the new -- (inaudible) -- vests out that covers your -- (inaudible). We need those because we have taken some casualties due to the shrapnel from IEDs going through the side. The front parts are good, but the sides are not. Thank you.

    Posted by Eric at 02:30 AM | Comments (35)

    Rumfeld the Survivor

    At first Rumsfeld was afraid, he was petrified. But he's apparently a survivor. (link via Counterspin):

    THE CRASSEST THING EVER SAID BY A MEMBER OF THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION: Today, speaking before hundreds of beleaguered American soldiers at a town hall meeting at Camp Victory in Baghdad, Donald Rumsfeld actually had the nerve to refer to his bureaucratic problems in Washington (you know, that torture thing) and say--again, in front of brave U.S. troops who put their lives and health on the line every day in Iraq--"I'm a survivor."

    I wonder if it occurred to Rumsfeld how appalling his statement was when he heard questions like these from our troops:

    Q: Sir, my unit, the 2nd Brigade -- (inaudible) -- Cav, we have five out of the six red zones in this country. And with the up- armored humvees, the new -- (off mike) -- humvees they're bringing over with the -- (inaudible) -- those doors are not as good as the ones on the up-armored humvees -- (inaudible). We even lost quite -- we lost some soldiers due to them, and we're trying to make a change -- (inaudible). The question is, are we going to get more up-armored humvees?

    And the second question I wanted to ask is, they have the new -- (inaudible) -- vests out that covers your -- (inaudible). We need those because we have taken some casualties due to the shrapnel from IEDs going through the side. The front parts are good, but the sides are not. Thank you.

    Posted by Eric at 02:30 AM | Comments (7)

    Kerry Leads in Ohio

    Ohio is one of the states that will help decide the presidency, and Kerry is leading in the state, according to the American Research Group:

    John Kerry leads George W. Bush among likely voters in Ohio according to a survey by the American Research Group. A total of 49% of likely voters say they would vote for Kerry if the presidential election were being held today and 42% say they would vote for Bush. A total of 2% of likely voters say they would vote for Ralph Nader and 7% of likely voters are undecided.

    In a race between just Kerry and Bush, Kerry is at 50%, Bush is at 43%, and 7% are undecided.

    Posted by Eric at 01:25 AM | Comments (9)

    Kerry Leads in Ohio

    Ohio is one of the states that will help decide the presidency, and Kerry is leading in the state, according to the American Research Group:

    John Kerry leads George W. Bush among likely voters in Ohio according to a survey by the American Research Group. A total of 49% of likely voters say they would vote for Kerry if the presidential election were being held today and 42% say they would vote for Bush. A total of 2% of likely voters say they would vote for Ralph Nader and 7% of likely voters are undecided.

    In a race between just Kerry and Bush, Kerry is at 50%, Bush is at 43%, and 7% are undecided.

    Posted by Eric at 01:25 AM | Comments (1)

    McCain for Defense Secretary?

    A Republican from the Senate, ala William Cohen during the Clinton administration? From The Guardian (link via Talk Left):

    The Democratic presidential candidate, John Kerry, yesterday made a dramatic bid for crossover votes, declaring that if elected, he would choose John McCain, an outspoken Republican senator, as defence secretary.
    Senator Kerry named another senior Republican, Senator John Warner, currently chairing hearings into the Abu Ghraib prison abuse scandal, as an alternative.

    Senator McCain is a personal friend of Senator Kerry, a fellow Vietnam veteran, and the Kerry campaign has used a picture of the Democratic candidate with his arm around Mr McCain in its TV advertisements. There has even been talk of Mr McCain being picked as Mr Kerry's vice-presidential candidate.

    "I'm not the president today," Senator Kerry told a radio interviewer yesterday, but added: "I have any number of people that I would make secretary of defence, beginning with our good friend John McCain as an example."

    However, when asked about Mr Kerry's comments, Mr McCain said: "No thanks."

    Of course, in Washington, 'No Thanks' often means 'I can't say yes now, but if you do get elected, I'll probably say yes.'

    Posted by Eric at 12:54 AM | Comments (9)

    McCain for Defense Secretary?

    A Republican from the Senate, ala William Cohen during the Clinton administration? From The Guardian (link via Talk Left):

    The Democratic presidential candidate, John Kerry, yesterday made a dramatic bid for crossover votes, declaring that if elected, he would choose John McCain, an outspoken Republican senator, as defence secretary.
    Senator Kerry named another senior Republican, Senator John Warner, currently chairing hearings into the Abu Ghraib prison abuse scandal, as an alternative.

    Senator McCain is a personal friend of Senator Kerry, a fellow Vietnam veteran, and the Kerry campaign has used a picture of the Democratic candidate with his arm around Mr McCain in its TV advertisements. There has even been talk of Mr McCain being picked as Mr Kerry's vice-presidential candidate.

    "I'm not the president today," Senator Kerry told a radio interviewer yesterday, but added: "I have any number of people that I would make secretary of defence, beginning with our good friend John McCain as an example."

    However, when asked about Mr Kerry's comments, Mr McCain said: "No thanks."

    Of course, in Washington, 'No Thanks' often means 'I can't say yes now, but if you do get elected, I'll probably say yes.'

    Posted by Eric at 12:54 AM | Comments (2)

    May 13, 2004

    Thursday Stories

    News
    Fort Wayne Gazette. New photos: 'What we saw is appalling'
    Reuters. Bush taking time to renominate Fed chief Greenspan
    The Hill. Frist finger on ‘nuclear’ button
    AJC. Raw Iraq photos withheld: After lawmakers screen images, some say release too risky now
    AP. Rumsfeld: U.S. interrogation techniques don't violate Geneva Conventions
    NYT. U.S. Officials Failed to Protect Slain Civilian, Family Says
    NYT. Shiite Leaders Report Progress in Talks on Najaf, but Cleric Balks
    NYT. Lawmakers View Images From Iraq
    NYT. Rumsfeld Makes a Surprise Visit to Baghdad
    LAT. Bush Spanish-Language Ads Hit Kerry Education Record
    LAT. Kerry: Postpone Iraq Abuse Courts-Martial
    AP. Poll suggests negative ads having effect
    AP. Nader wins party's nod, spot on a few ballots
    BGlobe. Kerry says Bush fails in handling Iraq war
    BGlobe. Convention budget overruns pose new woes
    USAT. 'Soft money' may help GOP launch wider attack on Kerry
    NY DN. Be Kerry's veep? No way, says Hil
    MSNBC. Pollsters: Kerry aside, Bush is in trouble

    Commentary
    BGlobe. Iraq's vicious circle
    Joshua Green. Playing Dirty: This year's presidential campaign is already shaping up to be even more negative than the last
    Stewart Nusbaumer. In Over His Head
    Greg Palast. Fear for Sale
    Tom Keane. Gen. Clark's bars could take Kerry far
    Lakshmi Chaudhry. What John Kerry Needs: The Estrogen Factor
    Mamoun Fandy. Bin Laden's Stature Rises with the World's Tallest Building
    Don Hazen. On the Spot: Searching for Money for Progressive Candidates
    Frank Ackerman, Kerry Smith and Lisa Heinzerling. Choice Cuts: Cost-benefit analysis is often used to support industry wish lists. Should we blame the method or the masters?
    Jared Bernstein. Workers, Stiffed: Bush & Co. are doing their best to keep wages low for those who make the least
    Matthew Yglesias. New World Order: Rumsfeld thinks most people in other countries like the United States. He'd better think again
    Richard Woodward. Picture This: Abu Ghraib proves that when it comes to weapons of war, nothing packs as much firepower as a camera.
    Sheryll Cashin. Fifty Years after Brown, the American Dilemma Continues
    Center for American Progress. Abu Ghraib: Implementing Reforms, Taking Responsibility
    Sheryl McCarthy. GOP stacks the vote to make Kerry a loser
    Issac Kim. Asian youth face a harsh reality: The image of being a 'model minority' masks the struggles of those who fail to fit the mold
    Jonathan Alter. The Picture the World Sees
    Robert Scheer. Thread of Abuse Runs to the Oval Office
    David Corn. Reckless Executive: Bush detractors overlook the administration's biggest weakness: its incompetence
    Bill Berkowitz. Kerry's foreign policy trap: Is the Democratic candidate trying to out-Bush Bush on Iraq, the war on terrorism, Israel, and Cuba?
    Joe Conason. Kerry's campaign contradicts critics: It's way too early for either side to panic -- and Kerry's still winning

    Posted by Eric at 11:24 PM | Comments (11)

    Thursday Stories

    News
    Fort Wayne Gazette. New photos: 'What we saw is appalling'
    Reuters. Bush taking time to renominate Fed chief Greenspan
    The Hill. Frist finger on ‘nuclear’ button
    AJC. Raw Iraq photos withheld: After lawmakers screen images, some say release too risky now
    AP. Rumsfeld: U.S. interrogation techniques don't violate Geneva Conventions
    NYT. U.S. Officials Failed to Protect Slain Civilian, Family Says
    NYT. Shiite Leaders Report Progress in Talks on Najaf, but Cleric Balks
    NYT. Lawmakers View Images From Iraq
    NYT. Rumsfeld Makes a Surprise Visit to Baghdad
    LAT. Bush Spanish-Language Ads Hit Kerry Education Record
    LAT. Kerry: Postpone Iraq Abuse Courts-Martial
    AP. Poll suggests negative ads having effect
    AP. Nader wins party's nod, spot on a few ballots
    BGlobe. Kerry says Bush fails in handling Iraq war
    BGlobe. Convention budget overruns pose new woes
    USAT. 'Soft money' may help GOP launch wider attack on Kerry
    NY DN. Be Kerry's veep? No way, says Hil
    MSNBC. Pollsters: Kerry aside, Bush is in trouble

    Commentary
    BGlobe. Iraq's vicious circle
    Joshua Green. Playing Dirty: This year's presidential campaign is already shaping up to be even more negative than the last
    Stewart Nusbaumer. In Over His Head
    Greg Palast. Fear for Sale
    Tom Keane. Gen. Clark's bars could take Kerry far
    Lakshmi Chaudhry. What John Kerry Needs: The Estrogen Factor
    Mamoun Fandy. Bin Laden's Stature Rises with the World's Tallest Building
    Don Hazen. On the Spot: Searching for Money for Progressive Candidates
    Frank Ackerman, Kerry Smith and Lisa Heinzerling. Choice Cuts: Cost-benefit analysis is often used to support industry wish lists. Should we blame the method or the masters?
    Jared Bernstein. Workers, Stiffed: Bush & Co. are doing their best to keep wages low for those who make the least
    Matthew Yglesias. New World Order: Rumsfeld thinks most people in other countries like the United States. He'd better think again
    Richard Woodward. Picture This: Abu Ghraib proves that when it comes to weapons of war, nothing packs as much firepower as a camera.
    Sheryll Cashin. Fifty Years after Brown, the American Dilemma Continues
    Center for American Progress. Abu Ghraib: Implementing Reforms, Taking Responsibility
    Sheryl McCarthy. GOP stacks the vote to make Kerry a loser
    Issac Kim. Asian youth face a harsh reality: The image of being a 'model minority' masks the struggles of those who fail to fit the mold
    Jonathan Alter. The Picture the World Sees
    Robert Scheer. Thread of Abuse Runs to the Oval Office
    David Corn. Reckless Executive: Bush detractors overlook the administration's biggest weakness: its incompetence
    Bill Berkowitz. Kerry's foreign policy trap: Is the Democratic candidate trying to out-Bush Bush on Iraq, the war on terrorism, Israel, and Cuba?
    Joe Conason. Kerry's campaign contradicts critics: It's way too early for either side to panic -- and Kerry's still winning

    Posted by Eric at 11:24 PM | Comments (1)

    Yet Another Poll Shows Bush Decline

    The CBS poll finds "lowest level of his presidency": 44%.

    Posted by Eric at 04:29 PM | Comments (9)

    Yet Another Poll Shows Bush Decline

    The CBS poll finds "lowest level of his presidency": 44%.

    Posted by Eric at 04:29 PM | Comments (4)

    Hamster Numbers: Tax Cuts

    From Harpers:

    Average amount a Bush Cabinet member will save this year due to cuts in capital-gains and dividend taxes : $42,000 [The Independent (London) ]

    Median U.S. household income in 2002 : $42,409 [U.S. Census Bureau (Washington) ]

    Posted by Eric at 04:13 PM | Comments (17)

    Hamster Numbers: Tax Cuts

    From Harpers:

    Average amount a Bush Cabinet member will save this year due to cuts in capital-gains and dividend taxes : $42,000 [The Independent (London) ]

    Median U.S. household income in 2002 : $42,409 [U.S. Census Bureau (Washington) ]

    Posted by Eric at 04:13 PM | Comments (5)

    Colorado GOP Won't Support Rep. Marilyn Musgrave's Anti-Gay Measure

    All politics is local, so it sucks to be Rep. Marilyn Musgrave (link from the Brown Democrats):

    U.S. Rep. Marilyn Musgrave's home- county Republicans voted against supporting her federal amendment to ban same- sex marriage.

    Morgan County Republicans fell one vote short of approving a resolution at their county assembly earlier this month to support fellow Republican Musgrave's amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which would define marriage as between a man and a woman.

    Alright, well what else?
    Among those who didn't vote for the resolution: Musgrave and her husband, who left the assembly early.
    AHAHAHAHA. Ohhh ironic snap! What say you, John Straayer, Colorado State University political science professor:
    said the resolution's failure in Musgrave's home county could indicate waning support. He added that the debate brings into focus not only the issue of gay rights, but a discussion of government's size.

    "I think it would make sense for the Republican Party to pay attention to the fact that not everyone in their fold is excited about small government in the area of taxation and regulation and big government for behavioral controls," he said.

    Posted by Eric at 03:55 PM | Comments (15)

    Colorado GOP Won't Support Rep. Marilyn Musgrave's Anti-Gay Measure

    All politics is local, so it sucks to be Rep. Marilyn Musgrave (link from the Brown Democrats):

    U.S. Rep. Marilyn Musgrave's home- county Republicans voted against supporting her federal amendment to ban same- sex marriage.

    Morgan County Republicans fell one vote short of approving a resolution at their county assembly earlier this month to support fellow Republican Musgrave's amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which would define marriage as between a man and a woman.

    Alright, well what else?
    Among those who didn't vote for the resolution: Musgrave and her husband, who left the assembly early.
    AHAHAHAHA. Ohhh ironic snap! What say you, John Straayer, Colorado State University political science professor:
    said the resolution's failure in Musgrave's home county could indicate waning support. He added that the debate brings into focus not only the issue of gay rights, but a discussion of government's size.

    "I think it would make sense for the Republican Party to pay attention to the fact that not everyone in their fold is excited about small government in the area of taxation and regulation and big government for behavioral controls," he said.

    Posted by Eric at 03:55 PM | Comments (12)

    Petition: Voting Machines

    From America Coming Together and Steve Bouchard, of ACT Ohio:

    The facts are clear, electronic voting machines are not ready:

    1. Electronic voting machines are untested: The machines are poorly made and have been proven to malfunction in tests. This is true of Diebold machines and other manufacturers.

    2. The machines are insecure: Diebold's e-voting system was compromised last year when an unidentified hacker managed to obtain the company's software blueprints. This gave computer scientists a chance to evaluate the code and question its' integrity.

    3. Diebold's leadership is far too partisan to be entrusted with this awesome responsibility: Diebold executives have given over $1 million dollars to Republicans. Plus, the Diebold Chairman Walden O'Dell sent a fundraising letter for the Ohio Republican Party that he was "committed to helping Ohio deliver its electoral vote" to Bush. Other makers of electronic machines are known Bush supporters too, but to less degree.

    Join us nationwide in protecting the Ohio vote. Sign the "Paper Trail Petition" and pass it on.

    http://actforvictory.org/act.php/home/petitions/diebold_ohio

    Posted by Eric at 03:39 PM | Comments (13)

    Petition: Voting Machines

    From America Coming Together and Steve Bouchard, of ACT Ohio:

    The facts are clear, electronic voting machines are not ready:

    1. Electronic voting machines are untested: The machines are poorly made and have been proven to malfunction in tests. This is true of Diebold machines and other manufacturers.

    2. The machines are insecure: Diebold's e-voting system was compromised last year when an unidentified hacker managed to obtain the company's software blueprints. This gave computer scientists a chance to evaluate the code and question its' integrity.

    3. Diebold's leadership is far too partisan to be entrusted with this awesome responsibility: Diebold executives have given over $1 million dollars to Republicans. Plus, the Diebold Chairman Walden O'Dell sent a fundraising letter for the Ohio Republican Party that he was "committed to helping Ohio deliver its electoral vote" to Bush. Other makers of electronic machines are known Bush supporters too, but to less degree.

    Join us nationwide in protecting the Ohio vote. Sign the "Paper Trail Petition" and pass it on.

    http://actforvictory.org/act.php/home/petitions/diebold_ohio

    Posted by Eric at 03:39 PM | Comments (0)

    Another Science Group: Missile Shield Won't Work

    But let's not let science get in the way of the Star Wars fantasy (and not Natalie Portman). From Reuters:

    The multibillion-dollar U.S. ballistic missile shield due to start operating by Sept. 30 appears incapable of shooting down any incoming warheads, an independent scientists' group said on Thursday.

    A technical analysis found "no basis for believing the system will have any capability to defend against a real attack," the Union of Concerned Scientists said in a 76-page report titled "Technical Realities."

    The Pentagon's Missile Defense Agency rejected the report, whose authors included Philip Coyle, the Defense Department's top weapons tester under former President Bill Clinton from 1994 to 2001.

    "Even the limited defense we are mounting provides a level of protection against an accidental or unauthorized (intercontinental ballistic missile) launch or a limited attack where we currently have no protection," said Richard Lehner, an agency spokesman. "It would be irresponsible to not make it available for the defense of our nation and our people."

    Also see David Wright and Theodore Postol, and Jack Mendelsohn

    Posted by Eric at 03:35 PM | Comments (10)

    Another Science Group: Missile Shield Won't Work

    But let's not let science get in the way of the Star Wars fantasy (and not Natalie Portman). From Reuters:

    The multibillion-dollar U.S. ballistic missile shield due to start operating by Sept. 30 appears incapable of shooting down any incoming warheads, an independent scientists' group said on Thursday.

    A technical analysis found "no basis for believing the system will have any capability to defend against a real attack," the Union of Concerned Scientists said in a 76-page report titled "Technical Realities."

    The Pentagon's Missile Defense Agency rejected the report, whose authors included Philip Coyle, the Defense Department's top weapons tester under former President Bill Clinton from 1994 to 2001.

    "Even the limited defense we are mounting provides a level of protection against an accidental or unauthorized (intercontinental ballistic missile) launch or a limited attack where we currently have no protection," said Richard Lehner, an agency spokesman. "It would be irresponsible to not make it available for the defense of our nation and our people."

    Also see David Wright and Theodore Postol, and Jack Mendelsohn

    Posted by Eric at 03:35 PM | Comments (5)

    So What's Sinclair Media?

    From the Baltimore Sun:

    "They're kind of a Triple-A Fox News - and that's not derogatory," said Robert Zelnick, a former ABC News correspondent who is now chairman of the journalism department at Boston University. "Their orientation is clear."

    Smith and his family members, who still hold a controlling share in the publicly traded company, have locally been known to hew to a certain set of conservative beliefs - skeptical of government regulation and taxation and support of gun rights mixed with support for water quality conservation, as evidenced by a not-for-profit run from Sinclair's corporate headquarters.

    And they've dabbled in political spheres, too. Aside from the occasional contribution to Democratic candidates, the Smith brothers - primarily Frederick G. Smith, a Sinclair vice president and director - have contributed more than $200,000 to Republican Party causes in the past four years. They have also financially backed Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr., in one instance drawing fire for heavily discounting helicopter trips from a firm owned by Sinclair vice president and director J. Duncan Smith during the 2002 gubernatorial race.

    Posted by Eric at 03:33 PM | Comments (11)

    So What's Sinclair Media?

    From the Baltimore Sun:

    "They're kind of a Triple-A Fox News - and that's not derogatory," said Robert Zelnick, a former ABC News correspondent who is now chairman of the journalism department at Boston University. "Their orientation is clear."

    Smith and his family members, who still hold a controlling share in the publicly traded company, have locally been known to hew to a certain set of conservative beliefs - skeptical of government regulation and taxation and support of gun rights mixed with support for water quality conservation, as evidenced by a not-for-profit run from Sinclair's corporate headquarters.

    And they've dabbled in political spheres, too. Aside from the occasional contribution to Democratic candidates, the Smith brothers - primarily Frederick G. Smith, a Sinclair vice president and director - have contributed more than $200,000 to Republican Party causes in the past four years. They have also financially backed Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr., in one instance drawing fire for heavily discounting helicopter trips from a firm owned by Sinclair vice president and director J. Duncan Smith during the 2002 gubernatorial race.

    Posted by Eric at 03:33 PM | Comments (4)

    Sean Hannity: All Media Liberal, Including Talk Radio?

    EDIT: Media Matters has a correction on the quote, "The mainstream media is liberal. Three major networks, two cable networks, most newspapers, and talk radio," about the talk radio part, though even the original correction is still suspect.

    In fairness to Media Matters, the original Lexis-Nexis transcript (Transcript # 051004cb.253) has the error quote, so it's partially the fault of the transcript company.

    Posted by Eric at 03:01 PM | Comments (30)

    Sean Hannity: All Media Liberal, Including Talk Radio?

    EDIT: Media Matters has a correction on the quote, "The mainstream media is liberal. Three major networks, two cable networks, most newspapers, and talk radio," about the talk radio part, though even the original correction is still suspect.

    In fairness to Media Matters, the original Lexis-Nexis transcript (Transcript # 051004cb.253) has the error quote, so it's partially the fault of the transcript company.

    Posted by Eric at 03:01 PM | Comments (13)

    Oliver North: Iraqi Abuse Same As Ol' College Life

    Guess my college campus is pretty lame. Notes Media Matters:

    The prisoner abuse, North said, was committed by "a group of obviously twisted young people with leashes and weird sex acts, the kind of thing that you might find on any college campus nowadays, being perpetrated by people in uniform." Two days earlier, in a May 9 Commentary for The Washington Times, North wrote, "The media's 'compassion' for these imprisoned miscreants and suspected terrorists [the abused prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison] is a front for their journalistic jihad against the [George W. Bush] administration."

    Posted by Eric at 02:59 PM | Comments (153)

    Oliver North: Iraqi Abuse Same As Ol' College Life

    Guess my college campus is pretty lame. Notes Media Matters:

    The prisoner abuse, North said, was committed by "a group of obviously twisted young people with leashes and weird sex acts, the kind of thing that you might find on any college campus nowadays, being perpetrated by people in uniform." Two days earlier, in a May 9 Commentary for The Washington Times, North wrote, "The media's 'compassion' for these imprisoned miscreants and suspected terrorists [the abused prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison] is a front for their journalistic jihad against the [George W. Bush] administration."

    Posted by Eric at 02:59 PM | Comments (4)

    Clinton Memoirs

    From IMDB.com, on Clinton:

    Former American President Bill Clinton has finished his highly anticipated memoir, after working around the clock to get it ready for publishers. The Arkansas-born politician, 57, is reportedly being paid up to $14.4 million to pen the tome, which is scheduled to hit book shelves next month, published by Random House's Alfred A Knopf imprint. Knopf spokesman Paul Bogards says, "It's about 900 pages, and there is still some editing to be done." Clinton recently told Vanity Fair magazine, "I am literally hardly sleeping. I am working around-the-clock. I am killing myself because I want it done." The work should be worthwhile - the book will be given an initial printing of 1.5 million copies and is already top of the best-sellers list on online American booksellers website Barnes&Noble.Com through pre-orders.
    If you feel like tossing this site a few bucks, buy it through this link.

    Posted by Eric at 09:57 AM | Comments (16)

    Clinton Memoirs

    From IMDB.com, on Clinton:

    Former American President Bill Clinton has finished his highly anticipated memoir, after working around the clock to get it ready for publishers. The Arkansas-born politician, 57, is reportedly being paid up to $14.4 million to pen the tome, which is scheduled to hit book shelves next month, published by Random House's Alfred A Knopf imprint. Knopf spokesman Paul Bogards says, "It's about 900 pages, and there is still some editing to be done." Clinton recently told Vanity Fair magazine, "I am literally hardly sleeping. I am working around-the-clock. I am killing myself because I want it done." The work should be worthwhile - the book will be given an initial printing of 1.5 million copies and is already top of the best-sellers list on online American booksellers website Barnes&Noble.Com through pre-orders.
    If you feel like tossing this site a few bucks, buy it through this link.

    Posted by Eric at 09:57 AM | Comments (0)

    Olbermann vs. O'Reilly, Volume 2

    From the Washington Post gossip column:

    MSNBC's Keith Olbermann -- who, as we reported yesterday, considers Fox News Channel's Bill O'Reilly an "abject failure," which prompted a Fox spokesman to brand Olbermann a "tortured soul" -- would like the last word on this little spat. Olbermann e-mailed us yesterday: "My soul stopped being tortured the day I stopped working for those soul-less clowns at Fox." Over to you, Bill.

    Posted by Eric at 09:35 AM | Comments (19)

    Olbermann vs. O'Reilly, Volume 2

    From the Washington Post gossip column:

    MSNBC's Keith Olbermann -- who, as we reported yesterday, considers Fox News Channel's Bill O'Reilly an "abject failure," which prompted a Fox spokesman to brand Olbermann a "tortured soul" -- would like the last word on this little spat. Olbermann e-mailed us yesterday: "My soul stopped being tortured the day I stopped working for those soul-less clowns at Fox." Over to you, Bill.

    Posted by Eric at 09:35 AM | Comments (4)

    Two Servicemen Killed in Iraq

    "The latest deaths brings to 777 the number of US soldiers killed since the start of the invasion of Iraq in March 2003." AP.

    Posted by Eric at 09:33 AM | Comments (3)

    Two Servicemen Killed in Iraq

    "The latest deaths brings to 777 the number of US soldiers killed since the start of the invasion of Iraq in March 2003." AP.

    Posted by Eric at 09:33 AM | Comments (2)

    Public Satisfaction with Country: 33%

    Finds the Pew Research Center:

    Public satisfaction with national conditions has fallen to 33%, its lowest level in eight years, in the wake of revelations of prisoner abuse committed by U.S. soldiers at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. President Bush's overall job approval rating also has dropped into negative territory: 44% approve of his job performance, while 48% disapprove ... For all that, however, public sentiment continues to run against an immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq. By 53%-42%, Americans favor keeping the troops there until a stable government is established. That number has changed little since early April, after four U.S. contractors were murdered and their bodies desecrated.

    President Bush has lost some ground in the presidential race, though voter opinion remains closely divided. Sen. John Kerry holds a 50%-45% lead over Bush in a two-way race, and his lead narrows to 46%-43% when Ralph Nader is included. Most of the president's supporters say they consider their vote as a choice for the president. By contrast, Kerry's supporters by roughly two-to-one (32%-15%) view their vote as one against Bush.

    But confidence in Bush relative to Kerry has eroded on major issues like Iraq and the economy. Bush holds a slight 44%-41% edge as the candidate better able to make wise decisions in Iraq policy; in late March, he held a 12-point advantage (49%-37%). At the same time, Kerry has opened up double-digit leads on both the economy and jobs. Kerry's advantage on the key domestic issue of health care is even larger. Currently, 51% say Kerry would be better able to improve the health care system, while just 29% say that about Bush.

    Posted by Eric at 09:27 AM | Comments (21)

    Public Satisfaction with Country: 33%

    Finds the Pew Research Center:

    Public satisfaction with national conditions has fallen to 33%, its lowest level in eight years, in the wake of revelations of prisoner abuse committed by U.S. soldiers at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. President Bush's overall job approval rating also has dropped into negative territory: 44% approve of his job performance, while 48% disapprove ... For all that, however, public sentiment continues to run against an immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq. By 53%-42%, Americans favor keeping the troops there until a stable government is established. That number has changed little since early April, after four U.S. contractors were murdered and their bodies desecrated.

    President Bush has lost some ground in the presidential race, though voter opinion remains closely divided. Sen. John Kerry holds a 50%-45% lead over Bush in a two-way race, and his lead narrows to 46%-43% when Ralph Nader is included. Most of the president's supporters say they consider their vote as a choice for the president. By contrast, Kerry's supporters by roughly two-to-one (32%-15%) view their vote as one against Bush.

    But confidence in Bush relative to Kerry has eroded on major issues like Iraq and the economy. Bush holds a slight 44%-41% edge as the candidate better able to make wise decisions in Iraq policy; in late March, he held a 12-point advantage (49%-37%). At the same time, Kerry has opened up double-digit leads on both the economy and jobs. Kerry's advantage on the key domestic issue of health care is even larger. Currently, 51% say Kerry would be better able to improve the health care system, while just 29% say that about Bush.

    Posted by Eric at 09:27 AM | Comments (3)

    Congress - White House Divide?

    According to The Hill, Congressional Republicans and the White House are having trouble getting along:

    Republicans on the Hill are so frustrated with the White House that when Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) criticized the administration at a House GOP meeting last week, the caucus burst into applause ...

    One GOP lawmaker at the caucus meeting said Hastert “expressed outright dismay with the White House staff for the way the transportation bill had been handled. They did not give the priority necessary to the issue in resolving it as the Speaker had wanted. It’s in absolute limbo.” ...

    The are also widespread complaints among lawmakers that the administration’s message machine is out of sync. When, for example, the House passed a bill in March raising penalties for violence against pregnant woman, the White House dimished the political impact by trumping it with the announcement that it would support a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, even though key House leaders were not on board.

    However, as The Hill notes, the House and White House historically don't always get along, e.g. Clinton and Dems in 1993-1994.

    Posted by Eric at 09:25 AM | Comments (14)

    Congress - White House Divide?

    According to The Hill, Congressional Republicans and the White House are having trouble getting along:

    Republicans on the Hill are so frustrated with the White House that when Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) criticized the administration at a House GOP meeting last week, the caucus burst into applause ...

    One GOP lawmaker at the caucus meeting said Hastert “expressed outright dismay with the White House staff for the way the transportation bill had been handled. They did not give the priority necessary to the issue in resolving it as the Speaker had wanted. It’s in absolute limbo.” ...

    The are also widespread complaints among lawmakers that the administration’s message machine is out of sync. When, for example, the House passed a bill in March raising penalties for violence against pregnant woman, the White House dimished the political impact by trumping it with the announcement that it would support a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, even though key House leaders were not on board.

    However, as The Hill notes, the House and White House historically don't always get along, e.g. Clinton and Dems in 1993-1994.

    Posted by Eric at 09:25 AM | Comments (8)

    Washington Jeopardy

    Al Franken plays on Washington Jeopardy today (Thursday). Unfortunately, no O'Reilly.

    Posted by Eric at 12:57 AM | Comments (7)

    Washington Jeopardy

    Al Franken plays on Washington Jeopardy today (Thursday). Unfortunately, no O'Reilly.

    Posted by Eric at 12:57 AM | Comments (1)

    Tucker Carlson Now Against Iraq War

    From the NY Observer:

    For years, PBS has been home to paleoliberals like Bill Moyers. But it seems Mr. Carlson has had a change of heart recently. While he’s still a staunch conservative—he’s anti-abortion, married with four kids—he’s changed his mind about the war in Iraq. "I think it’s a total nightmare and disaster, and I’m ashamed that I went against my own instincts in supporting it," he said. "It’s something I’ll never do again. Never. I got convinced by a friend of mine who’s smarter than I am, and I shouldn’t have done that. No. I want things to work out, but I’m enraged by it, actually."

    Mr. Carlson—never really a card-carrying member of the vast right-wing conspiracy—said he had broken off from the hawkish neoconservatives who flogged the war from the get-go. "I’m getting more paleo every day," he said, referring to the so-called paleoconservatives.

    "While he’s still a staunch conservative—he’s anti-abortion, married with four kids—" What does having kids have to do with ideology?

    Posted by Eric at 12:52 AM | Comments (29)

    Tucker Carlson Now Against Iraq War

    From the NY Observer:

    For years, PBS has been home to paleoliberals like Bill Moyers. But it seems Mr. Carlson has had a change of heart recently. While he’s still a staunch conservative—he’s anti-abortion, married with four kids—he’s changed his mind about the war in Iraq. "I think it’s a total nightmare and disaster, and I’m ashamed that I went against my own instincts in supporting it," he said. "It’s something I’ll never do again. Never. I got convinced by a friend of mine who’s smarter than I am, and I shouldn’t have done that. No. I want things to work out, but I’m enraged by it, actually."

    Mr. Carlson—never really a card-carrying member of the vast right-wing conspiracy—said he had broken off from the hawkish neoconservatives who flogged the war from the get-go. "I’m getting more paleo every day," he said, referring to the so-called paleoconservatives.

    "While he’s still a staunch conservative—he’s anti-abortion, married with four kids—" What does having kids have to do with ideology?

    Posted by Eric at 12:52 AM | Comments (13)

    May 12, 2004

    Tony Knowles

    A lot of people complain about Democrats not standing up for what they believe in, etc, so in the conservative state of Alaska, it's refreshing to have someone like Tony Knowles. See Daily Kos for more info on Knowles and gay rights.

    Posted by Eric at 05:49 PM | Comments (9)

    Tony Knowles

    A lot of people complain about Democrats not standing up for what they believe in, etc, so in the conservative state of Alaska, it's refreshing to have someone like Tony Knowles. See Daily Kos for more info on Knowles and gay rights.

    Posted by Eric at 05:49 PM | Comments (9)

    Wrath of the International Consumers?

    Are international consumers showing their disdain for America through the wonderful world of capitalism? Guardian:

    The number of people who like and use US branded products has fallen significantly over the past year, while brands perceived to be non-American have remained relatively stable.

    According to NOP World, which carried out the survey, a mixture of America's controversial involvement in Iraq, its handling of the "war against terrorism", corporate scandals such as WorldCom and its failure to sign up to the Kyoto environmental agreement, have all had a profoundly negative affect on the perception of US culture and its major brands.

    Tom Miller, the managing director of NOP World, said worsening attitudes to the county's products could damage US business.

    Coca-Cola from 55% to 52%. McDonald's rating from 36% to 33%. Nike's from 56% to 53% and Microsoft from 45% to 39%. Big picture, "The total number of consumers worldwide who "use" US brands was found to have fallen from 30% to 27%, while non-American brands remained stable at 24%."

    Posted by Eric at 04:32 PM | Comments (8)

    Wrath of the International Consumers?

    Are international consumers showing their disdain for America through the wonderful world of capitalism? Guardian:

    The number of people who like and use US branded products has fallen significantly over the past year, while brands perceived to be non-American have remained relatively stable.

    According to NOP World, which carried out the survey, a mixture of America's controversial involvement in Iraq, its handling of the "war against terrorism", corporate scandals such as WorldCom and its failure to sign up to the Kyoto environmental agreement, have all had a profoundly negative affect on the perception of US culture and its major brands.

    Tom Miller, the managing director of NOP World, said worsening attitudes to the county's products could damage US business.

    Coca-Cola from 55% to 52%. McDonald's rating from 36% to 33%. Nike's from 56% to 53% and Microsoft from 45% to 39%. Big picture, "The total number of consumers worldwide who "use" US brands was found to have fallen from 30% to 27%, while non-American brands remained stable at 24%."

    Posted by Eric at 04:32 PM | Comments (2)

    Olbermann vs. O'Reilly

    As reported in the Washington Post,

    "The key thing that's left out of Bill O'Reilly's career is that he got to where he is by being an abject failure at every step. He was kind of the buffoon of local news in New York and in Boston," the host of MSNBC's "Countdown With Keith Olbermann" tells the mag. "Bill O'Reilly is not of this Earth. He has an exceptionally well-designed television show, but it is neither news nor truth. The number of factual errors on that show on a given night exceeds our audience."

    Well, for those counting, Olbermann's show drew 309,000 nightly viewers in April, according to Nielson figures, and O'Reilly's "Factor" on the Fox News Channel drew more than 2.2 million.

    O'Reilly is on vacation, but a Fox News spokesman was happy to respond in kind yesterday: "Since he stopped reading sports scores, Keith has attracted fewer viewers than a test pattern and his career has been nothing short of a train wreck. We pity his tortured soul and wish him all the best."

    So get that FHM, which you can now legitimately buy for, ahem, the articles.

    Posted by Eric at 04:29 PM | Comments (7)

    Olbermann vs. O'Reilly

    As reported in the Washington Post,

    "The key thing that's left out of Bill O'Reilly's career is that he got to where he is by being an abject failure at every step. He was kind of the buffoon of local news in New York and in Boston," the host of MSNBC's "Countdown With Keith Olbermann" tells the mag. "Bill O'Reilly is not of this Earth. He has an exceptionally well-designed television show, but it is neither news nor truth. The number of factual errors on that show on a given night exceeds our audience."

    Well, for those counting, Olbermann's show drew 309,000 nightly viewers in April, according to Nielson figures, and O'Reilly's "Factor" on the Fox News Channel drew more than 2.2 million.

    O'Reilly is on vacation, but a Fox News spokesman was happy to respond in kind yesterday: "Since he stopped reading sports scores, Keith has attracted fewer viewers than a test pattern and his career has been nothing short of a train wreck. We pity his tortured soul and wish him all the best."

    So get that FHM, which you can now legitimately buy for, ahem, the articles.

    Posted by Eric at 04:29 PM | Comments (2)

    "Bush's Poll Numbers Hitting the Danger Zone"

    According to Reuters, "voters are slowly sinking into the kind of pessimistic funk that doomed other presidents."

    Several recent polls show Bush's approval ratings slipping below 50 percent amid growing doubts among voters about his handling of the war in Iraq and of the economy.

    Growing majorities believe the country is headed in the wrong direction, a traditional early indicator of the electorate's mood and a clear warning sign for an incumbent trying to persuade the public to rehire him four more years.

    "He is in dangerous territory now," pollster John Zogby said of Bush, although Democratic challenger John Kerry so far has failed to take much advantage of Bush's slump six months before the November election.

    Frank Newport, editor in chief of the Gallup poll, said Bush's slowly sinking job approval rating, down to 46 percent in his latest survey, was similar to the dropping trajectory of the last three incumbents to lose their elections -- George Bush, the current president's father, Jimmy Carter and Gerald Ford.

    Posted by Eric at 04:07 PM | Comments (19)

    "Bush's Poll Numbers Hitting the Danger Zone"

    According to Reuters, "voters are slowly sinking into the kind of pessimistic funk that doomed other presidents."

    Several recent polls show Bush's approval ratings slipping below 50 percent amid growing doubts among voters about his handling of the war in Iraq and of the economy.

    Growing majorities believe the country is headed in the wrong direction, a traditional early indicator of the electorate's mood and a clear warning sign for an incumbent trying to persuade the public to rehire him four more years.

    "He is in dangerous territory now," pollster John Zogby said of Bush, although Democratic challenger John Kerry so far has failed to take much advantage of Bush's slump six months before the November election.

    Frank Newport, editor in chief of the Gallup poll, said Bush's slowly sinking job approval rating, down to 46 percent in his latest survey, was similar to the dropping trajectory of the last three incumbents to lose their elections -- George Bush, the current president's father, Jimmy Carter and Gerald Ford.

    Posted by Eric at 04:07 PM | Comments (8)

    Walid Phares: Liberals Caused Beheading

    Phares attempts to connect the Left to the beheadings. No really. "Walid Phares is a Professor of Middle East Studies and Religious Conflict and a Terrorism expert with MSNBC." In Front Page Magazine:

    The slaughtering of Nick Berg is one small step for terrorists and a major leap for the West’s encounter with Jihadism. The videotape, posted on the Ansar website, is one of many horrifying acts perpetrated by the followers of Osama bin Laden. It has also become a shameful benchmark in the West’s liberal media reporting. ...

    Unfortunately, some among us may have fuelled the blood fiesta that was shown on the website. While Abu Ghraib has now become another way in which terrorists can legitimize killing innocent people, liberal and anti-American voices from this end of the world re-perpetrate this horrid logic, excessively assessing the so-called impact of the Iraqi soldiers abuse by their guards and declaring that the "reactions will be violent and bloody." In other words, they morally legitimized these bloody acts by seeing them as mere responses, not actions that are in line with a culture of death and hatred. So when the slaughter of Berg took place and was posted online, these same voices rushed to establish a moral equality between Abu Ghraib and the savage beheading of an innocent young man. But no such equality exists.

    Shame on you, liberals.

    Posted by Eric at 03:58 PM | Comments (10)

    Walid Phares: Liberals Caused Beheading

    Phares attempts to connect the Left to the beheadings. No really. "Walid Phares is a Professor of Middle East Studies and Religious Conflict and a Terrorism expert with MSNBC." In Front Page Magazine:

    The slaughtering of Nick Berg is one small step for terrorists and a major leap for the West’s encounter with Jihadism. The videotape, posted on the Ansar website, is one of many horrifying acts perpetrated by the followers of Osama bin Laden. It has also become a shameful benchmark in the West’s liberal media reporting. ...

    Unfortunately, some among us may have fuelled the blood fiesta that was shown on the website. While Abu Ghraib has now become another way in which terrorists can legitimize killing innocent people, liberal and anti-American voices from this end of the world re-perpetrate this horrid logic, excessively assessing the so-called impact of the Iraqi soldiers abuse by their guards and declaring that the "reactions will be violent and bloody." In other words, they morally legitimized these bloody acts by seeing them as mere responses, not actions that are in line with a culture of death and hatred. So when the slaughter of Berg took place and was posted online, these same voices rushed to establish a moral equality between Abu Ghraib and the savage beheading of an innocent young man. But no such equality exists.

    Shame on you, liberals.

    Posted by Eric at 03:58 PM | Comments (8)

    Save Hawaiian Waters

    From the Environmental Defense:

    The Northwest Hawaiian Islands (NWHI) are home to over 7,000 species of coral, fish, millions of sea birds, and marine mammals, including endangered Hawaiian monk seals and threatened green sea turtles. They hold great cultural significance for Native Hawaiians. The NWHI Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve was created by Executive Order after strong support from the public and thousands of Environmental Defense activists. The federal government is presenting for public comment a Reserve Operations Plan to guide management of the Reserve and to become the foundation for a proposed NWHI Sanctuary. The plan, however, is weak, missing key elements required by the Executive Order, and does not appear to make adequate NWHI protection possible. Act now. Contact federal officials urging them to fulfill the Executive Order mandate, enforce strong protective measures for the NWHI, and ensure that any future Sanctuary must provide added protection for the region. * Urgent: Comments due Saturday, May 15th! *
    Sign the petition here.

    Posted by Eric at 05:28 AM | Comments (24)

    Save Hawaiian Waters

    From the Environmental Defense:

    The Northwest Hawaiian Islands (NWHI) are home to over 7,000 species of coral, fish, millions of sea birds, and marine mammals, including endangered Hawaiian monk seals and threatened green sea turtles. They hold great cultural significance for Native Hawaiians. The NWHI Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve was created by Executive Order after strong support from the public and thousands of Environmental Defense activists. The federal government is presenting for public comment a Reserve Operations Plan to guide management of the Reserve and to become the foundation for a proposed NWHI Sanctuary. The plan, however, is weak, missing key elements required by the Executive Order, and does not appear to make adequate NWHI protection possible. Act now. Contact federal officials urging them to fulfill the Executive Order mandate, enforce strong protective measures for the NWHI, and ensure that any future Sanctuary must provide added protection for the region. * Urgent: Comments due Saturday, May 15th! *
    Sign the petition here.

    Posted by Eric at 05:28 AM | Comments (8)

    May 10, 2004

    Hamster Out

    Going back home. Be back Wednesday.

    Posted by Eric at 12:00 AM | Comments (65)

    Hamster Out

    Going back home. Be back Wednesday.

    Posted by Eric at 12:00 AM | Comments (13)

    May 09, 2004

    Sunday Stories

    News
    Guardian. Catastrophe: The White House faced its biggest crisis over Iraq last week, but its origins lie in practices that may have been routine
    WP. Kerry Urges Students To Do Public Service
    Scotsman. Disaster for Blair as Iraq torture claims widen
    BGlobe. With Bush on the defensive, Democrats sharpen criticism
    BGlobe. A Kerry message starts to break through
    BGlobe. Reeve calls stem cell work vital
    Reuters. Cheney Defends Rumsfeld, Says 'Get Off His Case'
    Reuters. Blast Kills Chechen Leader, Russian Gen.
    LA Times. Mom Marches On to Keep Ban on Weapons
    WP. Dissension Grows In Senior Ranks On War Strategy
    AP. Moral Clarity, Courage Needed, Bush Aide Says
    NYT. Rice Says She and Bush Support Rumsfeld
    NYT. In Abuse, a Portrayal of Ill-Prepared, Overwhelmed G.I.'s
    NYT. U.S. Presses U.N. on Role in Iraq for Politicians
    AP. Coalition of groups opposed to Bush registers voters in Nevada
    St Louis PD. Carnahan, Woods kick off ACT voter registration campaign here

    Posted by Eric at 11:53 PM | Comments (2)

    Sunday Stories

    News
    Guardian. Catastrophe: The White House faced its biggest crisis over Iraq last week, but its origins lie in practices that may have been routine
    WP. Kerry Urges Students To Do Public Service
    Scotsman. Disaster for Blair as Iraq torture claims widen
    BGlobe. With Bush on the defensive, Democrats sharpen criticism
    BGlobe. A Kerry message starts to break through
    BGlobe. Reeve calls stem cell work vital
    Reuters. Cheney Defends Rumsfeld, Says 'Get Off His Case'
    Reuters. Blast Kills Chechen Leader, Russian Gen.
    LA Times. Mom Marches On to Keep Ban on Weapons
    WP. Dissension Grows In Senior Ranks On War Strategy
    AP. Moral Clarity, Courage Needed, Bush Aide Says
    NYT. Rice Says She and Bush Support Rumsfeld
    NYT. In Abuse, a Portrayal of Ill-Prepared, Overwhelmed G.I.'s
    NYT. U.S. Presses U.N. on Role in Iraq for Politicians
    AP. Coalition of groups opposed to Bush registers voters in Nevada
    St Louis PD. Carnahan, Woods kick off ACT voter registration campaign here

    Posted by Eric at 11:53 PM | Comments (5)

    The Merits of Howard Stern?

    There are some in the shock jock's show and his cause, according to public radio's Ira Glass in the NY Times Magazine.

    I'm the host of a show on public radio, and when my listeners tell me they don't care for Stern, I always think it reveals a regrettable narrowness of vision. Mostly, they're put off by the naked girls. But Stern has invented a way of being on the air that uses the medium better than nearly anyone. He's more honest, more emotionally present, more interesting, more wide-ranging in his opinions than any host on public radio. Also, he's a fantastic interviewer. He's truly funny. And his staff on the air is cheerfully inclusive of every kind of person: black, white, dwarf, stutterer, drunk and supposed gay. What public radio show has that kind of diversity? ...

    Sadly, lots of smart people shrug off the recent government crackdown on Howard Stern -- and on other ''indecency'' -- as if it were nastiness going on in some bad neighborhood of the broadcast dial, one that doesn't concern them, one that they'd never stoop to visit.

    But the recent F.C.C. rulings make me Stern's brother as I've never been before. Here are just a few of the things we've broadcast on our show that now could conceivably result in fines of up to a half million dollars for the 484 public stations that run the program: assorted curse words, people saying ''damn'' and ''goddamn'' (a recent F.C.C. decision declared that ''profane'' and ''blasphemous'' speech would now come under scrutiny); various prison stories; and a very funny story by the writer David Sedaris that takes place in a bathroom and that violates all three F.C.C. criteria for ''indecency.'' It's explicitly graphic in talking about ''excretory organs or activities''; Sedaris repeats and dwells on the descriptions at length, and he absolutely means to pander and shock. That's what makes it funny.

    The obscene "This American Life" and David Sedaris.

    Love the culture war: radio talk stations are cleaning up their act all over the country in the wake of the FCC crackdown.

    Howard Stern is taking his scandalous show to Las Vegas. Last week, The Nation had a cover story on Stern.

    Posted by Eric at 07:35 AM | Comments (22)

    The Merits of Howard Stern?

    There are some in the shock jock's show and his cause, according to public radio's Ira Glass in the NY Times Magazine.

    I'm the host of a show on public radio, and when my listeners tell me they don't care for Stern, I always think it reveals a regrettable narrowness of vision. Mostly, they're put off by the naked girls. But Stern has invented a way of being on the air that uses the medium better than nearly anyone. He's more honest, more emotionally present, more interesting, more wide-ranging in his opinions than any host on public radio. Also, he's a fantastic interviewer. He's truly funny. And his staff on the air is cheerfully inclusive of every kind of person: black, white, dwarf, stutterer, drunk and supposed gay. What public radio show has that kind of diversity? ...

    Sadly, lots of smart people shrug off the recent government crackdown on Howard Stern -- and on other ''indecency'' -- as if it were nastiness going on in some bad neighborhood of the broadcast dial, one that doesn't concern them, one that they'd never stoop to visit.

    But the recent F.C.C. rulings make me Stern's brother as I've never been before. Here are just a few of the things we've broadcast on our show that now could conceivably result in fines of up to a half million dollars for the 484 public stations that run the program: assorted curse words, people saying ''damn'' and ''goddamn'' (a recent F.C.C. decision declared that ''profane'' and ''blasphemous'' speech would now come under scrutiny); various prison stories; and a very funny story by the writer David Sedaris that takes place in a bathroom and that violates all three F.C.C. criteria for ''indecency.'' It's explicitly graphic in talking about ''excretory organs or activities''; Sedaris repeats and dwells on the descriptions at length, and he absolutely means to pander and shock. That's what makes it funny.

    The obscene "This American Life" and David Sedaris.

    Love the culture war: radio talk stations are cleaning up their act all over the country in the wake of the FCC crackdown.

    Howard Stern is taking his scandalous show to Las Vegas. Last week, The Nation had a cover story on Stern.

    Posted by Eric at 07:35 AM | Comments (2)

    Gen. Clark: "Bush made mistake after mistake as Commander-in-Chief..."

    "... He took us into a war we didn't have to wage, alone and under false pretenses and is now managing it poorly." From the Democratic radio address:

    Now the mission is in danger as the self-imposed June 30th deadline approaches. To prevent Iraq from becoming a failed state that breeds new terrorists, America must change course. Enough of the unilateralism and over reliance on the military. We must bring in our allies, give them a seat at the table and together create an international organization to provide economic and political assistance to the Iraqi. The US must not bear so much of the burden. We are unlikely to succeed if we continue to do so.

    With new American leadership we can gain real help from our NATO allies - and from countries in the region. With their help, we can create the conditions for free and fair elections, transition to a secure and free Iraq, and bring home much of our military.

    My fellow Americans. This is an election year. It is our duty to use the power of the vote and hold accountable our President. We need new leadership in America to keep us safe at home, and to regain respect for America abroad.

    An mp3 of the address can be found at WesPac.

    Posted by Eric at 07:01 AM | Comments (1)

    Gen. Clark: "Bush made mistake after mistake as Commander-in-Chief..."

    "... He took us into a war we didn't have to wage, alone and under false pretenses and is now managing it poorly." From the Democratic radio address:

    Now the mission is in danger as the self-imposed June 30th deadline approaches. To prevent Iraq from becoming a failed state that breeds new terrorists, America must change course. Enough of the unilateralism and over reliance on the military. We must bring in our allies, give them a seat at the table and together create an international organization to provide economic and political assistance to the Iraqi. The US must not bear so much of the burden. We are unlikely to succeed if we continue to do so.

    With new American leadership we can gain real help from our NATO allies - and from countries in the region. With their help, we can create the conditions for free and fair elections, transition to a secure and free Iraq, and bring home much of our military.

    My fellow Americans. This is an election year. It is our duty to use the power of the vote and hold accountable our President. We need new leadership in America to keep us safe at home, and to regain respect for America abroad.

    An mp3 of the address can be found at WesPac.

    Posted by Eric at 07:01 AM | Comments (5)

    Barbara Bush Enters Fundraising Fray

    The proud mother reminds people:

    "With Mother's Day coming up this weekend, I've been thinking about how proud I am of our children," Mrs. Bush wrote. "And it's with a mother's pride that I'm writing you today to ask you to support our eldest, George W., and his re-election campaign with a donation of $1,000, $500, $250, $100 or $50."

    Mrs. Bush told prospective donors her son has been president during challenging times and "has met the tasks at hand with a steely determination."

    "This election is going to be a tough one. That is why I'm asking for your support," she wrote. "For months the president has been facing negative advertising from John Kerry and all sorts of pro-Kerry groups. I've been particularly disappointed in the personal attacks."

    Posted by Eric at 05:11 AM | Comments (23)

    Barbara Bush Enters Fundraising Fray

    The proud mother reminds people:

    "With Mother's Day coming up this weekend, I've been thinking about how proud I am of our children," Mrs. Bush wrote. "And it's with a mother's pride that I'm writing you today to ask you to support our eldest, George W., and his re-election campaign with a donation of $1,000, $500, $250, $100 or $50."

    Mrs. Bush told prospective donors her son has been president during challenging times and "has met the tasks at hand with a steely determination."

    "This election is going to be a tough one. That is why I'm asking for your support," she wrote. "For months the president has been facing negative advertising from John Kerry and all sorts of pro-Kerry groups. I've been particularly disappointed in the personal attacks."

    Posted by Eric at 05:11 AM | Comments (3)

    Hamster Numbers: Victims of crime: Who is at greatest risk?

    From the Western Prison Project:

    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income under $7,500: 67.0
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income between $7,500-$14,999: 44.2
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income between $15,000-$24,999: 38.9
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income between $25,000-$34,999: 37.1
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income between $35,000-$49,999: 30.9
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income between $50,000-$74,999: 24.1
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income of $75,000 or more: 23.1

    Posted by Eric at 04:35 AM | Comments (2)

    Hamster Numbers: Victims of crime: Who is at greatest risk?

    From the Western Prison Project:

    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income under $7,500: 67.0
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income between $7,500-$14,999: 44.2
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income between $15,000-$24,999: 38.9
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income between $25,000-$34,999: 37.1
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income between $35,000-$49,999: 30.9
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income between $50,000-$74,999: 24.1
    Number of burglaries per 1,000 households with an income of $75,000 or more: 23.1

    Posted by Eric at 04:35 AM | Comments (0)

    Katherine Harris's Ballot Rejected

    Aw, poor thing. From the BBC:

    The Florida official who presided over the election which handed George W Bush his presidential victory in 2000 has had a ballot of her own rejected.
    Republican Congresswoman Katherine Harris admitted she forgot to sign her absentee ballot form in a local election.

    True, Longboat Key is electing a new councillor, not the US president, but she said she felt "terrible".

    "I know how important voting is," the former Florida state secretary added.

    Boy, does she. And remember all those people who, in response to the Florida recount, said stuff like, 'If they're not smart enough to vote right, their vote shouldn't count'?

    Posted by Eric at 04:23 AM | Comments (41)

    Katherine Harris's Ballot Rejected

    Aw, poor thing. From the BBC:

    The Florida official who presided over the election which handed George W Bush his presidential victory in 2000 has had a ballot of her own rejected.
    Republican Congresswoman Katherine Harris admitted she forgot to sign her absentee ballot form in a local election.

    True, Longboat Key is electing a new councillor, not the US president, but she said she felt "terrible".

    "I know how important voting is," the former Florida state secretary added.

    Boy, does she. And remember all those people who, in response to the Florida recount, said stuff like, 'If they're not smart enough to vote right, their vote shouldn't count'?

    Posted by Eric at 04:23 AM | Comments (15)

    May 08, 2004

    News, Fox Attitude

    What a silly bunch they are, beating up on the freaks and geeks at CNN. AP:

    The proposed sign would read: "Now That CNN's Ratings are Gone With the Wind, Our Work on This Board Is Done. We Love You Atlanta. Brought to you by your friends at FOX News Channel."

    Below that message would be a less-than-subtle pitch to the hundreds of CNN employees who file past the board every day. "Sign Up with America's Newsroom! Forward resumes to resumes(at)foxnews.com." ... Since 1999, the sign overlooking CNN Center has alternately trumpeted Fox's triumphs or taken jabs at CNN. It featured legal reporter Greta Van Susteren, shortly after she left CNN for Fox, and accused the network of lacking patriotism during the war in Iraq (news - web sites).

    For the past several months it has read, "Come Home Connie. CNN Needs You." Connie Chung was fired abruptly in March 2003, not long after CNN founder Ted Turner called her "just awful" in an interview.

    Posted by Eric at 07:43 AM | Comments (46)

    News, Fox Attitude

    What a silly bunch they are, beating up on the freaks and geeks at CNN. AP:

    The proposed sign would read: "Now That CNN's Ratings are Gone With the Wind, Our Work on This Board Is Done. We Love You Atlanta. Brought to you by your friends at FOX News Channel."

    Below that message would be a less-than-subtle pitch to the hundreds of CNN employees who file past the board every day. "Sign Up with America's Newsroom! Forward resumes to resumes(at)foxnews.com." ... Since 1999, the sign overlooking CNN Center has alternately trumpeted Fox's triumphs or taken jabs at CNN. It featured legal reporter Greta Van Susteren, shortly after she left CNN for Fox, and accused the network of lacking patriotism during the war in Iraq (news - web sites).

    For the past several months it has read, "Come Home Connie. CNN Needs You." Connie Chung was fired abruptly in March 2003, not long after CNN founder Ted Turner called her "just awful" in an interview.

    Posted by Eric at 07:43 AM | Comments (19)

    More Crap to Come

    Notes Rummy:

    “There are other photos that depict incidents of physical violence towards prisoners, acts that can only be described as blatantly sadistic, cruel and inhumane," he said. “... It’s going to get a good deal more terrible, I’m afraid.”

    Rumsfeld did not describe the photos, but U.S. military officials told NBC News that the unreleased images showed U.S. soldiers severely beating an Iraqi prisoner nearly to death, having sex with a female Iraqi female prisoner and “acting inappropriately with a dead body.” The officials said there was also a videotape, apparently shot by U.S. personnel, showing Iraqi guards raping young boys.

    Posted by Eric at 12:44 AM | Comments (220)

    More Crap to Come

    Notes Rummy:

    “There are other photos that depict incidents of physical violence towards prisoners, acts that can only be described as blatantly sadistic, cruel and inhumane," he said. “... It’s going to get a good deal more terrible, I’m afraid.”

    Rumsfeld did not describe the photos, but U.S. military officials told NBC News that the unreleased images showed U.S. soldiers severely beating an Iraqi prisoner nearly to death, having sex with a female Iraqi female prisoner and “acting inappropriately with a dead body.” The officials said there was also a videotape, apparently shot by U.S. personnel, showing Iraqi guards raping young boys.

    Posted by Eric at 12:44 AM | Comments (18)

    Nader's Mission: Hurt Democrats, Republicans Irrelevant

    Not to beat a dead horse, but we should rid ourselves of the notion that Nader is about creating a viable third party, holding Democrats responsible or building a progressive movement. Ultimately, the reason why Nader is running is because he's obsessed with hurting the Democrats more than Republicans, even if it includes smears and lies. As Harry G. Levine in the Village Voice notes:

    Martin reports that during the 2000 campaign, "no matter how hard he tried to be evenhanded in doling out criticism of Bush and Gore, Nader did show a bias"—against Gore. "It was clear to many," writes Martin, "that he truly despised Gore, while he was merely dismissive of Bush." Martin was especially struck by a Portland speech where Nader said that Gore was "more reprehensible" than Bush because Gore "knows so much and refuses to act on his knowledge." ...

    Ralph Nader exploited his reputation as a self-sacrificing idealist to pursue an utterly selfish goal. He claimed his purpose was to build the Green Party by drawing the 5 percent vote required for federal funding. But this was cover—a way of justifying his lust for revenge. Nader campaigned as the honest man who told the truth while lying about what he believed and wanted.

    The most pernicious myth spread by his campaign was the Tweedledee and Tweedledum line—a claim columnist Marianne Means branded "insane" and his opposite number Pat Buchanan never got near. Perhaps Nader concealed from himself that his nostalgic view of a Democratic Party that had shifted away from its progressive traditions was at odds with the hodgepodge he actually grew up with—an amalgam of machine hacks and Ivy League liberals, rip-roaring Southern racists and farmer-labor populists. But he certainly recognized the huge difference between a timid moderate Democrat like Al Gore and fierce right-wingers like George W. Bush and Dick Cheney. These were Republicans of a sort never in power before Reagan. Like most politicians, however, Nader couldn't reveal what he really thought. He needed an explanation for campaigning in the swing states. So he exaggerated, distorted, misled, and dissembled. He lied.

    "Throughout the campaign, Nader brushed aside concerns that he might help elect Bush by employing one of several blithe quips," wrote Jonathan Chait in the November 2002 American Prospect. "If asked about being a spoiler, he'd invariably reply, 'You can't spoil a system that's spoiled to the core.' " Chait concludes: "Not since Steve Forbes has a presidential candidate turned aside unwanted queries so robotically. Nader's one-liners were pure, made-for-television nonsequiturs, all refusing to engage on any substantive level the fact that his candidacy might prove a decisive factor in Bush's election."

    Twisty. But sad.

    Posted by Eric at 12:35 AM | Comments (49)

    Nader's Mission: Hurt Democrats, Republicans Irrelevant

    Not to beat a dead horse, but we should rid ourselves of the notion that Nader is about creating a viable third party, holding Democrats responsible or building a progressive movement. Ultimately, the reason why Nader is running is because he's obsessed with hurting the Democrats more than Republicans, even if it includes smears and lies. As Harry G. Levine in the Village Voice notes:

    Martin reports that during the 2000 campaign, "no matter how hard he tried to be evenhanded in doling out criticism of Bush and Gore, Nader did show a bias"—against Gore. "It was clear to many," writes Martin, "that he truly despised Gore, while he was merely dismissive of Bush." Martin was especially struck by a Portland speech where Nader said that Gore was "more reprehensible" than Bush because Gore "knows so much and refuses to act on his knowledge." ...

    Ralph Nader exploited his reputation as a self-sacrificing idealist to pursue an utterly selfish goal. He claimed his purpose was to build the Green Party by drawing the 5 percent vote required for federal funding. But this was cover—a way of justifying his lust for revenge. Nader campaigned as the honest man who told the truth while lying about what he believed and wanted.

    The most pernicious myth spread by his campaign was the Tweedledee and Tweedledum line—a claim columnist Marianne Means branded "insane" and his opposite number Pat Buchanan never got near. Perhaps Nader concealed from himself that his nostalgic view of a Democratic Party that had shifted away from its progressive traditions was at odds with the hodgepodge he actually grew up with—an amalgam of machine hacks and Ivy League liberals, rip-roaring Southern racists and farmer-labor populists. But he certainly recognized the huge difference between a timid moderate Democrat like Al Gore and fierce right-wingers like George W. Bush and Dick Cheney. These were Republicans of a sort never in power before Reagan. Like most politicians, however, Nader couldn't reveal what he really thought. He needed an explanation for campaigning in the swing states. So he exaggerated, distorted, misled, and dissembled. He lied.

    "Throughout the campaign, Nader brushed aside concerns that he might help elect Bush by employing one of several blithe quips," wrote Jonathan Chait in the November 2002 American Prospect. "If asked about being a spoiler, he'd invariably reply, 'You can't spoil a system that's spoiled to the core.' " Chait concludes: "Not since Steve Forbes has a presidential candidate turned aside unwanted queries so robotically. Nader's one-liners were pure, made-for-television nonsequiturs, all refusing to engage on any substantive level the fact that his candidacy might prove a decisive factor in Bush's election."

    Twisty. But sad.

    Posted by Eric at 12:35 AM | Comments (19)

    May 07, 2004

    Friday Stories

    News
    NYT. Red Cross Says That for Months It Complained of Iraq Prison Abuses to the U.S.
    NYT. Bush Sorry for Abuse of Iraqi Prisoners, but Backs Rumsfeld
    NYT. Florida Judge Authorizes Removal of Feeding Tube
    WP. Bush's Words Do Little to Ease Horror at Prison Deeds
    Reuters. Rumsfeld Faces Congress on Iraqi Prisoner Abuse
    Det FP. Fighting Methodists could split
    AP. Bush Backs Rumsfeld in Prison Abuse Case
    AP. Pentagon Memo Warned on Army Contractors
    AP. Bush Polls Slump Amid Abuse Case
    LAT. Kerry Proposal Would Boost Teachers, but With a Price
    AP. Bush Speaks at National Prayer Day Event
    Guardian. Nancy Reagan tackles Bush on stem cells

    Commentary
    Krugman. The Oil Crunch
    Helen Thomas. Bush Faces Fork In Road In Iraq: Does U.S. Try To Save Face And Stay Or Save Lives And Leave?
    Christopher Scheer. Bush's New, New Lie
    Arianna Huffington. Do You Recognize Bush's America?
    Chris Mooney. Think Again: False Objectivity in Science Reporting
    Terence Samuel. Rocky Mountain High: Sure, Bush won Colorado last time. Come November, though, he better watch out
    Ken Miller. Outsource This
    Steven A. Cook. The Great Satan: Thanks to Bush's neocon cabal, the Arab world now hates the U.S. as much as it does Israel
    Gadflyer. The Vanishing Undecided Voter: Loving both of you is breakin' all the rules
    Cliff Schecter. The Wrong Man: How Paul Bremer bungled the occupation of Iraq
    Katha Pollitt. Show & Tell in Abu Ghraib
    Sean Aday. Prime Time: Why recent polls don't spell doom for Kerry
    David Corn. Banned in Kalamazoo
    Bill Press. WE TORTURE PRISONERS, DON'T WE?
    Jim Goldsborough. Remaking the Middle East to our liking
    Dan Carpenter. What now can Haiti count on?
    Eric Alterman. Is Koppel a Commie?
    Sidney Blumenthal. This is the new gulag: Bush has created a global network of extra-legal and secret US prisons with thousands of inmates
    Derrick Z. Jackson. Searching for the truth on escalating war costs
    BGlobe. Rumsfeld must go
    Des Moines Register. Make college less burdensome: Congress shouldn't go the other direction, making college loans more expensive
    Sandeep Kaushik. John Kerry's Iraq Problem

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (4)

    Friday Stories

    News
    NYT. Red Cross Says That for Months It Complained of Iraq Prison Abuses to the U.S.
    NYT. Bush Sorry for Abuse of Iraqi Prisoners, but Backs Rumsfeld
    NYT. Florida Judge Authorizes Removal of Feeding Tube
    WP. Bush's Words Do Little to Ease Horror at Prison Deeds
    Reuters. Rumsfeld Faces Congress on Iraqi Prisoner Abuse
    Det FP. Fighting Methodists could split
    AP. Bush Backs Rumsfeld in Prison Abuse Case
    AP. Pentagon Memo Warned on Army Contractors
    AP. Bush Polls Slump Amid Abuse Case
    LAT. Kerry Proposal Would Boost Teachers, but With a Price
    AP. Bush Speaks at National Prayer Day Event
    Guardian. Nancy Reagan tackles Bush on stem cells

    Commentary
    Krugman. The Oil Crunch
    Helen Thomas. Bush Faces Fork In Road In Iraq: Does U.S. Try To Save Face And Stay Or Save Lives And Leave?
    Christopher Scheer. Bush's New, New Lie
    Arianna Huffington. Do You Recognize Bush's America?
    Chris Mooney. Think Again: False Objectivity in Science Reporting
    Terence Samuel. Rocky Mountain High: Sure, Bush won Colorado last time. Come November, though, he better watch out
    Ken Miller. Outsource This
    Steven A. Cook. The Great Satan: Thanks to Bush's neocon cabal, the Arab world now hates the U.S. as much as it does Israel
    Gadflyer. The Vanishing Undecided Voter: Loving both of you is breakin' all the rules
    Cliff Schecter. The Wrong Man: How Paul Bremer bungled the occupation of Iraq
    Katha Pollitt. Show & Tell in Abu Ghraib
    Sean Aday. Prime Time: Why recent polls don't spell doom for Kerry
    David Corn. Banned in Kalamazoo
    Bill Press. WE TORTURE PRISONERS, DON'T WE?
    Jim Goldsborough. Remaking the Middle East to our liking
    Dan Carpenter. What now can Haiti count on?
    Eric Alterman. Is Koppel a Commie?
    Sidney Blumenthal. This is the new gulag: Bush has created a global network of extra-legal and secret US prisons with thousands of inmates
    Derrick Z. Jackson. Searching for the truth on escalating war costs
    BGlobe. Rumsfeld must go
    Des Moines Register. Make college less burdensome: Congress shouldn't go the other direction, making college loans more expensive
    Sandeep Kaushik. John Kerry's Iraq Problem

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (1)

    Fox News Cries Censorship

    No, really. IMDB:

    Fox News is claiming that an Atlanta billboard company is censoring a sign that it rents across the street from CNN's Atlanta offices. The company has used the sign since 1999 to needle CNN about its falling market share among news viewers and chide it about apparent missteps. It had recently wanted the sign changed to read: "Now That CNN's Ratings are Gone With the Wind, Our Work on This Board Is Done. We Love You Atlanta. Brought to you by your friends at FOX News Channel." However, despite threats of legal action, the billboard company involved has refused to change the sign.

    Posted by Eric at 04:15 PM | Comments (2)

    Fox News Cries Censorship

    No, really. IMDB:

    Fox News is claiming that an Atlanta billboard company is censoring a sign that it rents across the street from CNN's Atlanta offices. The company has used the sign since 1999 to needle CNN about its falling market share among news viewers and chide it about apparent missteps. It had recently wanted the sign changed to read: "Now That CNN's Ratings are Gone With the Wind, Our Work on This Board Is Done. We Love You Atlanta. Brought to you by your friends at FOX News Channel." However, despite threats of legal action, the billboard company involved has refused to change the sign.

    Posted by Eric at 04:15 PM | Comments (1)

    Veterans Anti-Kerry Site Funded by Republican Activist

    From St. Louis Post-Dispatch .

    Posted by Eric at 03:08 PM | Comments (10)

    Veterans Anti-Kerry Site Funded by Republican Activist

    From St. Louis Post-Dispatch .

    Posted by Eric at 03:08 PM | Comments (1)

    More Foxes to Come

    News Corp will launch more Fox channels. Oy? USA Today:

    Murdoch later told Fox News Channel business anchor Neil Cavuto that the company is considering a business, entertainment or sports channel. Other possibilities: weather, reality and Hispanic channels. Earlier, on a conference call with analysts to announce quarterly earnings, Murdoch said the company is looking at a ''number of genres'' that would be ''natural extensions'' of News Corp's Fox brand.

    His recent takeover of control of satellite TV operator DirecTV gives him a head start of 12.5 million homes for the new channel, which Fox will push to get carried by other cable and satellite operators.

    ''This is the big benefit of buying DirecTV. Any new channel they launch automatically has 12 million viewers, vs. going out there and trying to get viewers,'' says media analyst Andy Baker of independent research firm Cathay Financial.

    Posted by Eric at 02:48 PM | Comments (3)

    More Foxes to Come

    News Corp will launch more Fox channels. Oy? USA Today:

    Murdoch later told Fox News Channel business anchor Neil Cavuto that the company is considering a business, entertainment or sports channel. Other possibilities: weather, reality and Hispanic channels. Earlier, on a conference call with analysts to announce quarterly earnings, Murdoch said the company is looking at a ''number of genres'' that would be ''natural extensions'' of News Corp's Fox brand.

    His recent takeover of control of satellite TV operator DirecTV gives him a head start of 12.5 million homes for the new channel, which Fox will push to get carried by other cable and satellite operators.

    ''This is the big benefit of buying DirecTV. Any new channel they launch automatically has 12 million viewers, vs. going out there and trying to get viewers,'' says media analyst Andy Baker of independent research firm Cathay Financial.

    Posted by Eric at 02:48 PM | Comments (0)

    Did Someone Not Get the Memo?

    "We still face a deficit in the $500 billion range for the current fiscal year...but that size deficit, at roughly 4.5% of GDP...is not historically out of range; and it is entirely manageable."

    - Joshua Bolton, White House Budget Director, 12/10/03

    VERSUS

    "[The] federal budget deficit as "a significant obstacle to long-term [economic] stability."

    - Alan Greenspan, 5/6/04

    Posted by Eric at 02:22 PM | Comments (10)

    Did Someone Not Get the Memo?

    "We still face a deficit in the $500 billion range for the current fiscal year...but that size deficit, at roughly 4.5% of GDP...is not historically out of range; and it is entirely manageable."

    - Joshua Bolton, White House Budget Director, 12/10/03

    VERSUS

    "[The] federal budget deficit as "a significant obstacle to long-term [economic] stability."

    - Alan Greenspan, 5/6/04

    Posted by Eric at 02:22 PM | Comments (1)

    Bush By 3 in AP Poll

    And everyone's favorite Republican ally is getting 7 percent. AP/Ipsos:

    The AP-Ipsos poll found the race between Bush and Kerry remains close, with Bush's support at 46 percent, Kerry at 43 percent and independent candidate Ralph Nader at 7 percent.

    Despite recent encouraging economic news on both jobs and growth of the economy, support for Bush's handling of the economy was at 43 percent, the lowest number since Ipsos began tracking that question at the start of 2002.

    Support for Bush's handling of foreign policy and terrorism, usually his strongest area, was at 50 percent, down from 55 percent a month ago. The current level almost matched the 51 percent who approved last November, before the capture of Saddam Hussein.

    The poll also reports that, "Southerners and Republican women, two key Bush constituencies, have lost enthusiasm about his handling of foreign policy and terrorism."

    Posted by Eric at 08:47 AM | Comments (4)

    Bush By 3 in AP Poll

    And everyone's favorite Republican ally is getting 7 percent. AP/Ipsos:

    The AP-Ipsos poll found the race between Bush and Kerry remains close, with Bush's support at 46 percent, Kerry at 43 percent and independent candidate Ralph Nader at 7 percent.

    Despite recent encouraging economic news on both jobs and growth of the economy, support for Bush's handling of the economy was at 43 percent, the lowest number since Ipsos began tracking that question at the start of 2002.

    Support for Bush's handling of foreign policy and terrorism, usually his strongest area, was at 50 percent, down from 55 percent a month ago. The current level almost matched the 51 percent who approved last November, before the capture of Saddam Hussein.

    The poll also reports that, "Southerners and Republican women, two key Bush constituencies, have lost enthusiasm about his handling of foreign policy and terrorism."

    Posted by Eric at 08:47 AM | Comments (4)

    Stern in Pittsburgh

    No longer in the air in Pittsburgh, because of Clear Channel.

    According to Stern, the ratings for the station that used to carry Stern went from a 6.4 to a 1.2 rating. 18-34 year olds: 15.3 (#1) to a 4.2.

    EDIT: Also, see Rolling Stone.

    Posted by Eric at 06:01 AM | Comments (3)

    Stern in Pittsburgh

    No longer in the air in Pittsburgh, because of Clear Channel.

    According to Stern, the ratings for the station that used to carry Stern went from a 6.4 to a 1.2 rating. 18-34 year olds: 15.3 (#1) to a 4.2.

    EDIT: Also, see Rolling Stone.

    Posted by Eric at 06:01 AM | Comments (8)

    Fox's Chris Wallace Blasts Nightline

    Calls last Friday's show a "telephone directory." From USA Today:

    Fox News Sunday's Chris Wallace is taking on his former colleague at ABC News, Ted Koppel, saying Koppel's reading of the names of 720 soldiers killed in Iraq on a Nightline special Friday smacked of a ratings stunt and a political statement.

    "If you want to pay tribute to the troops, talk about what they fought and died for — not just that they died. It should be more than just a telephone directory," says Wallace, who plans a segment to list U.S. accomplishments in Iraq Sunday on his show. Wallace left ABC last year.

    Posted by Eric at 05:45 AM | Comments (9)

    Fox's Chris Wallace Blasts Nightline

    Calls last Friday's show a "telephone directory." From USA Today:

    Fox News Sunday's Chris Wallace is taking on his former colleague at ABC News, Ted Koppel, saying Koppel's reading of the names of 720 soldiers killed in Iraq on a Nightline special Friday smacked of a ratings stunt and a political statement.

    "If you want to pay tribute to the troops, talk about what they fought and died for — not just that they died. It should be more than just a telephone directory," says Wallace, who plans a segment to list U.S. accomplishments in Iraq Sunday on his show. Wallace left ABC last year.

    Posted by Eric at 05:45 AM | Comments (4)

    Hamster Numbers: Reporters

    From Harpers:

    Number of articles in major U.S. newspapers that have called any White House statement on Iraq a lie : 0 [Harper's research ]

    Number of the five tax-cut questions asked the president on Meet the Press last winter that concerned the cuts' inequity : 0 [Meet the Press transcript, 2/8/04 ]

    Posted by Eric at 05:35 AM | Comments (2)

    Hamster Numbers: Reporters

    From Harpers:

    Number of articles in major U.S. newspapers that have called any White House statement on Iraq a lie : 0 [Harper's research ]

    Number of the five tax-cut questions asked the president on Meet the Press last winter that concerned the cuts' inequity : 0 [Meet the Press transcript, 2/8/04 ]

    Posted by Eric at 05:35 AM | Comments (0)

    NY Times Calls for Rummy to Resign

    From the NY Times op-ed page:

    It is time now for Mr. Rumsfeld to go, and not only because he bears personal responsibility for the scandal of Abu Ghraib. That would certainly have been enough. The United States has been humiliated to a point where government officials could not release this year's international human rights report this week for fear of being scoffed at by the rest of the world. The reputation of its brave soldiers has been tarred, and the job of its diplomats made immeasurably harder because members of the American military tortured and humiliated Arab prisoners in ways guaranteed to inflame Muslim hearts everywhere. And this abuse was not an isolated event, as we know now and as Mr. Rumsfeld should have known, given the flood of complaints and reports directed to his office over the last year.

    The world is waiting now for a sign that President Bush understands the seriousness of what has happened. It needs to be more than his repeated statements that he is sorry the rest of the world does not "understand the true nature and heart of America." Mr. Bush should start showing the state of his own heart by demanding the resignation of his secretary of defense.

    This is far from a case of a fine cabinet official undone by the actions of a few obscure bad apples in the military police. Donald Rumsfeld has morphed, over the last two years, from a man of supreme confidence to arrogance, then to almost willful blindness. With the approval of the president, he sent American troops into a place whose nature and dangers he had apparently never bothered to examine.

    The Boston Globe also calls for Rumsfeld to resign.

    And The Economist.

    And, of course, John Kerry and other Democrats.

    Posted by Eric at 05:22 AM | Comments (3)

    NY Times Calls for Rummy to Resign

    From the NY Times op-ed page:

    It is time now for Mr. Rumsfeld to go, and not only because he bears personal responsibility for the scandal of Abu Ghraib. That would certainly have been enough. The United States has been humiliated to a point where government officials could not release this year's international human rights report this week for fear of being scoffed at by the rest of the world. The reputation of its brave soldiers has been tarred, and the job of its diplomats made immeasurably harder because members of the American military tortured and humiliated Arab prisoners in ways guaranteed to inflame Muslim hearts everywhere. And this abuse was not an isolated event, as we know now and as Mr. Rumsfeld should have known, given the flood of complaints and reports directed to his office over the last year.

    The world is waiting now for a sign that President Bush understands the seriousness of what has happened. It needs to be more than his repeated statements that he is sorry the rest of the world does not "understand the true nature and heart of America." Mr. Bush should start showing the state of his own heart by demanding the resignation of his secretary of defense.

    This is far from a case of a fine cabinet official undone by the actions of a few obscure bad apples in the military police. Donald Rumsfeld has morphed, over the last two years, from a man of supreme confidence to arrogance, then to almost willful blindness. With the approval of the president, he sent American troops into a place whose nature and dangers he had apparently never bothered to examine.

    The Boston Globe also calls for Rumsfeld to resign.

    And The Economist.

    And, of course, John Kerry and other Democrats.

    Posted by Eric at 05:22 AM | Comments (2)

    May 06, 2004

    Thursday, No Friends Stories

    News
    NYT. U.S. Retakes Governor's Office in Najaf; Bomb Kills 6 in Baghdad
    AP. Greenspan Says Soaring Budget Deficits Are Long-Term Threat
    LAT. White House Asks G.O.P. in Congress to Add $25 Billion
    USAT. Rumsfeld faces swelling tide of criticism
    CNN. Official: Bush chastises Rumsfeld
    WP. Rage Is on Display During Prison Tour
    WP. Bush to Appear on Christian TV
    AP. Kerry defends campaign amid Democrats' criticism
    AP. GOP sets fund-raising record; Annual gala helps party reap at least $38.5m
    AP. Officials warn against rush to back up electronic ballots
    LAT. Odds Are, Nevada Will Be a Tossup
    LAT. Utilities Have Helped Bush, GOP
    LAT. Kerry Says Abuse of Iraqi Prisoners Is 'Inexcusable'
    LAT. RFK Jr.'s Fervor Stirs Hollywood
    LAT. Miramax Won't Distribute Moore's '9/11'
    NBC. State Department focuses on global damage control

    Commentary
    Richard Cohen. Who Should Have Known?
    Chuck Todd. A Kerry Landslide? Why the next election won't be close
    Paul Glastris. Vision Quest: How John Kerry can create jobs by taking on K Street
    AJC. Abuse of Iraqi prisoners demands condemnation
    Ellen Goodman. Those images of abuse have hit us hard
    Michael Suleiman. He should have apologized: TV appearances hardly begin to stem the damage done in the Arab world by the Iraqi prison scandal
    Marie Cocco. Prison debacle shouldn't surprise us
    Sheryl McCarthy. Powell's song and dance are getting rather old hat
    Seattle PI. Remove Rumsfeld
    Molly Ivins. Neo-con man: How did we get here? Ask Ahmed Chalabi
    Jim Hightower. Common sense commentaries: May 3 - 7: The grand larceny of pinstriped thieves
    Geov Parrish. The disappearing act: On the road in Leon, Iowa -- a town, and a rural way of life, whose disappearance has been no accident
    Arianna Huffington. Bush democracy: Do you recognize his America?

    Posted by Eric at 11:34 PM | Comments (7)

    Thursday, No Friends Stories

    News
    NYT. U.S. Retakes Governor's Office in Najaf; Bomb Kills 6 in Baghdad
    AP. Greenspan Says Soaring Budget Deficits Are Long-Term Threat
    LAT. White House Asks G.O.P. in Congress to Add $25 Billion
    USAT. Rumsfeld faces swelling tide of criticism
    CNN. Official: Bush chastises Rumsfeld
    WP. Rage Is on Display During Prison Tour
    WP. Bush to Appear on Christian TV
    AP. Kerry defends campaign amid Democrats' criticism
    AP. GOP sets fund-raising record; Annual gala helps party reap at least $38.5m
    AP. Officials warn against rush to back up electronic ballots
    LAT. Odds Are, Nevada Will Be a Tossup
    LAT. Utilities Have Helped Bush, GOP
    LAT. Kerry Says Abuse of Iraqi Prisoners Is 'Inexcusable'
    LAT. RFK Jr.'s Fervor Stirs Hollywood
    LAT. Miramax Won't Distribute Moore's '9/11'
    NBC. State Department focuses on global damage control

    Commentary
    Richard Cohen. Who Should Have Known?
    Chuck Todd. A Kerry Landslide? Why the next election won't be close
    Paul Glastris. Vision Quest: How John Kerry can create jobs by taking on K Street
    AJC. Abuse of Iraqi prisoners demands condemnation
    Ellen Goodman. Those images of abuse have hit us hard
    Michael Suleiman. He should have apologized: TV appearances hardly begin to stem the damage done in the Arab world by the Iraqi prison scandal
    Marie Cocco. Prison debacle shouldn't surprise us
    Sheryl McCarthy. Powell's song and dance are getting rather old hat
    Seattle PI. Remove Rumsfeld
    Molly Ivins. Neo-con man: How did we get here? Ask Ahmed Chalabi
    Jim Hightower. Common sense commentaries: May 3 - 7: The grand larceny of pinstriped thieves
    Geov Parrish. The disappearing act: On the road in Leon, Iowa -- a town, and a rural way of life, whose disappearance has been no accident
    Arianna Huffington. Bush democracy: Do you recognize his America?

    Posted by Eric at 11:34 PM | Comments (2)

    Pelosi Calls on Defense Secretary Rumsfeld to Resign

    In a press release.

    The DCCC is urging people to petition for Rummy's resignation as well.

    Posted by Eric at 05:01 PM | Comments (11)

    Pelosi Calls on Defense Secretary Rumsfeld to Resign

    In a press release.

    The DCCC is urging people to petition for Rummy's resignation as well.

    Posted by Eric at 05:01 PM | Comments (5)

    Blinded by the Right

    David Brock's on "The O'Franken Factor" now, which gives me the chance to plug his book once again. One of the better books I've ever read if you want a better understanding of the Right's infrastructure, and the money that funds it. Buy it, borrow it from your library, just read it.

    Posted by Eric at 02:14 PM | Comments (13)

    Blinded by the Right

    David Brock's on "The O'Franken Factor" now, which gives me the chance to plug his book once again. One of the better books I've ever read if you want a better understanding of the Right's infrastructure, and the money that funds it. Buy it, borrow it from your library, just read it.

    Posted by Eric at 02:14 PM | Comments (7)

    Wes Clark Launches National Security PAC

    General Wes Clark has launched WesPac. From an email:

    That’s why I’m very excited to tell you about the launch of my new organization, WesPAC – Securing America’s Future, and to invite you to join me in this new endeavor. WesPAC is a results-oriented political action committee with two central objectives: first, to replace the current, radical Administration and its political allies; and second, to provide leadership in national security and to advocate for a strong, sound foreign policy.

    WesPAC can make a difference in this November’s elections, and in our country’s security and prosperity in the months and years ahead. But I can’t do it without you. Please sign up to join WesPAC today and make a financial contribution to help us take our message across America!

    I am proud to have already traveled frequently for Senator Kerry, making campaign stops in key battleground states – and planning additional trips to Ohio, Alabama, and Oklahoma in the very near future. I’ll also continue to speak out aggressively through the media and other forums, like my recent appearances on MSNBC and CNN, to point out the foreign policy failures of the Bush Administration in Iraq and in waging the war on terror.

    WesPAC provides the best vehicle for us to continue to shed light on this administration’s national security failures and unwise foreign policy – a constant veil lifting that will be increasingly important as the Bush/Cheney team floods the airwaves with $200 million of paid advertising.

    Through WesPAC, I will support the emergence of the Democratic Party as the party of national security, where our foreign policy is rooted in a strong America that is admired around the world, where political leadership is founded on integrity and accountability, and where we defend our values by working with our allies, respecting international institutions, and using force only as a last resort.

    At its core, WesPAC stands for the proposition that our campaign brought to American politics, spawned by a groundswell of support that drafted me into the race; it’s the same proposition that John Kerry continues to demonstrate through his campaign: that good and decent men and women in this great American family, motivated not by profits or power, but instead by idealism and patriotism, love of country and community, can give their hearts, their time, their energy, their spirit, and their labor to a cause so much greater than ourselves. It’s a commitment to make the greatest country on earth even greater, and to stand together, united by the knowledge that the highest calling, of soldier and citizen alike, is for each of us to ask what we can do for our country, and to do it.

    In this spirit, I’m proud to announce the launch of WesPAC today. Learn more at our website, www.wespac2004.com, and stay tuned in the days and weeks ahead as we launch new features, including a blog, a series of important petitions, and weekly poll questions.

    I invite you to join me on this next phase of our campaign to restore America: to make our nation safer, more secure, more prosperous, and respected again around the world. Sign up to join our cause. Contribute whatever you can. And stand with me, once again.

    Posted by Eric at 02:13 PM | Comments (4)

    Wes Clark Launches National Security PAC

    General Wes Clark has launched WesPac. From an email:

    That’s why I’m very excited to tell you about the launch of my new organization, WesPAC – Securing America’s Future, and to invite you to join me in this new endeavor. WesPAC is a results-oriented political action committee with two central objectives: first, to replace the current, radical Administration and its political allies; and second, to provide leadership in national security and to advocate for a strong, sound foreign policy.

    WesPAC can make a difference in this November’s elections, and in our country’s security and prosperity in the months and years ahead. But I can’t do it without you. Please sign up to join WesPAC today and make a financial contribution to help us take our message across America!

    I am proud to have already traveled frequently for Senator Kerry, making campaign stops in key battleground states – and planning additional trips to Ohio, Alabama, and Oklahoma in the very near future. I’ll also continue to speak out aggressively through the media and other forums, like my recent appearances on MSNBC and CNN, to point out the foreign policy failures of the Bush Administration in Iraq and in waging the war on terror.

    WesPAC provides the best vehicle for us to continue to shed light on this administration’s national security failures and unwise foreign policy – a constant veil lifting that will be increasingly important as the Bush/Cheney team floods the airwaves with $200 million of paid advertising.

    Through WesPAC, I will support the emergence of the Democratic Party as the party of national security, where our foreign policy is rooted in a strong America that is admired around the world, where political leadership is founded on integrity and accountability, and where we defend our values by working with our allies, respecting international institutions, and using force only as a last resort.

    At its core, WesPAC stands for the proposition that our campaign brought to American politics, spawned by a groundswell of support that drafted me into the race; it’s the same proposition that John Kerry continues to demonstrate through his campaign: that good and decent men and women in this great American family, motivated not by profits or power, but instead by idealism and patriotism, love of country and community, can give their hearts, their time, their energy, their spirit, and their labor to a cause so much greater than ourselves. It’s a commitment to make the greatest country on earth even greater, and to stand together, united by the knowledge that the highest calling, of soldier and citizen alike, is for each of us to ask what we can do for our country, and to do it.

    In this spirit, I’m proud to announce the launch of WesPAC today. Learn more at our website, www.wespac2004.com, and stay tuned in the days and weeks ahead as we launch new features, including a blog, a series of important petitions, and weekly poll questions.

    I invite you to join me on this next phase of our campaign to restore America: to make our nation safer, more secure, more prosperous, and respected again around the world. Sign up to join our cause. Contribute whatever you can. And stand with me, once again.

    Posted by Eric at 02:13 PM | Comments (3)

    Limbaugh on the Torture Scandal

    Interesting. Though we shouldn't expect anything else.

    CALLER: It was like a college fraternity prank that stacked up naked men --

    LIMBAUGH: Exactly. Exactly my point! This is no different than what happens at the Skull and Bones initiation and we're going to ruin people's lives over it and we're going to hamper our military effort, and then we are going to really hammer them because they had a good time. You know, these people are being fired at every day. I'm talking about people having a good time, these people, you ever heard of emotional release? You of heard of need to blow some steam off?

    The Limbaugh "good time" exemption.

    Posted by Eric at 12:56 PM | Comments (70)

    Limbaugh on the Torture Scandal

    Interesting. Though we shouldn't expect anything else.

    CALLER: It was like a college fraternity prank that stacked up naked men --

    LIMBAUGH: Exactly. Exactly my point! This is no different than what happens at the Skull and Bones initiation and we're going to ruin people's lives over it and we're going to hamper our military effort, and then we are going to really hammer them because they had a good time. You know, these people are being fired at every day. I'm talking about people having a good time, these people, you ever heard of emotional release? You of heard of need to blow some steam off?

    The Limbaugh "good time" exemption.

    Posted by Eric at 12:56 PM | Comments (17)

    Special Interests? Bush Outraises Kerry in Lobbyist Money By More Than 3:1 Margin

    According to the non-partisan Center for Public Integrity:

    President Bush has collected far more money from Washington lobbyists than Democratic rival John Kerry — roughly $1.1 million to the challenger's $305,000, according to a nonpartisan group's study.

    In this election cycle, at least 704 federally registered lobbyists have given more than a million to Bush's 2004 campaign while Kerry has taken in slightly more than $305,000 from 263 lobbyists, said the Center for Public Integrity. The organization reviewed lobbying and campaign finance reports.

    Posted by Eric at 12:52 PM | Comments (11)

    Special Interests? Bush Outraises Kerry in Lobbyist Money By More Than 3:1 Margin

    According to the non-partisan Center for Public Integrity:

    President Bush has collected far more money from Washington lobbyists than Democratic rival John Kerry — roughly $1.1 million to the challenger's $305,000, according to a nonpartisan group's study.

    In this election cycle, at least 704 federally registered lobbyists have given more than a million to Bush's 2004 campaign while Kerry has taken in slightly more than $305,000 from 263 lobbyists, said the Center for Public Integrity. The organization reviewed lobbying and campaign finance reports.

    Posted by Eric at 12:52 PM | Comments (5)

    Florida Purges Felons from Voter List

    As many as 40,000 will be taken off the voter rolls, by order of the Jeb Bush people:

    The state Division of Elections is turning the list over to local election supervisors in all 67 counties, and has ordered them to make sure to remove any felons whose voting rights have not been restored. The state says a preliminary check shows as many as 40,000 former felons are still registered to vote.

    ''As part of our quality assurance testing, felon and clemency information was run against a copy of the current voter registration database and has identified over 40,000 potential felon matches statewide,'' wrote Ed Kast, director of the state Division of Elections, in a memo sent out to election supervisors on Wednesday.

    The issue of felon voting became controversial after the contested 2000 presidential election, when critics said Florida used out-of-state lists to purge former felons, taking voting rights away from people who had committed crimes outside the state but had had their voting rights restored in those other states.

    During the 2000 election, some local election supervisors refused to purge their rolls based on the state list, saying they had no faith in how the list was compiled.

    So the effect?
    Any move to eliminate thousands of felons from voter lists would probably aid President Bush and Republican candidates. State records since 1990 show that even though blacks are nowhere near a majority of the state's population, they make up a majority of those serving time in state prisons. And a large majority of blacks traditionally vote Democratic.

    Posted by Eric at 12:42 PM | Comments (8)

    Florida Purges Felons from Voter List

    As many as 40,000 will be taken off the voter rolls, by order of the Jeb Bush people:

    The state Division of Elections is turning the list over to local election supervisors in all 67 counties, and has ordered them to make sure to remove any felons whose voting rights have not been restored. The state says a preliminary check shows as many as 40,000 former felons are still registered to vote.

    ''As part of our quality assurance testing, felon and clemency information was run against a copy of the current voter registration database and has identified over 40,000 potential felon matches statewide,'' wrote Ed Kast, director of the state Division of Elections, in a memo sent out to election supervisors on Wednesday.

    The issue of felon voting became controversial after the contested 2000 presidential election, when critics said Florida used out-of-state lists to purge former felons, taking voting rights away from people who had committed crimes outside the state but had had their voting rights restored in those other states.

    During the 2000 election, some local election supervisors refused to purge their rolls based on the state list, saying they had no faith in how the list was compiled.

    So the effect?
    Any move to eliminate thousands of felons from voter lists would probably aid President Bush and Republican candidates. State records since 1990 show that even though blacks are nowhere near a majority of the state's population, they make up a majority of those serving time in state prisons. And a large majority of blacks traditionally vote Democratic.

    Posted by Eric at 12:42 PM | Comments (7)

    North Korea

    According to the LA Times:

    The North has been trying for years to develop ballistic missiles that could reach the United States, but it has been widely assumed that such missiles were in the developmental stage.

    If the reports are confirmed, they would be an alarming development given that the Pyongyang government is also pursuing nuclear technology ... The official told the newspaper that the missile was likely to have a range of 1,800 to 2,500 miles, making it capable of reaching key Pacific bases in Guam and Okinawa.

    Ehhh...
    And because the missile can be launched from a craft, it might be able to reach Hawaii.
    Doh!

    Posted by Eric at 12:21 PM | Comments (8)

    North Korea

    According to the LA Times:

    The North has been trying for years to develop ballistic missiles that could reach the United States, but it has been widely assumed that such missiles were in the developmental stage.

    If the reports are confirmed, they would be an alarming development given that the Pyongyang government is also pursuing nuclear technology ... The official told the newspaper that the missile was likely to have a range of 1,800 to 2,500 miles, making it capable of reaching key Pacific bases in Guam and Okinawa.

    Ehhh...
    And because the missile can be launched from a craft, it might be able to reach Hawaii.
    Doh!

    Posted by Eric at 12:21 PM | Comments (3)

    Hamster Numbers: Minimum Wage

    From the EPI:

    Congress has not increased the minimum wage in more than six years. The last increase raised the minimum wage from $4.25 to $4.75 on October 1, 1996 and to $5.15 on September 1, 1997. Since 1997, inflation and government inaction have eaten away 90% of the value of that increase, returning the minimum wage to a historically low level in terms of purchasing power. The minimum wage has also lost significant ground compared to average hourly earnings in private employment. In the first quarter of 2004, the $5.15 minimum wage was only 33.2% of average hourly earnings ($15.52)—the lowest it has been in more than 50 years.

    Posted by Eric at 02:03 AM | Comments (16)

    Hamster Numbers: Minimum Wage

    From the EPI:

    Congress has not increased the minimum wage in more than six years. The last increase raised the minimum wage from $4.25 to $4.75 on October 1, 1996 and to $5.15 on September 1, 1997. Since 1997, inflation and government inaction have eaten away 90% of the value of that increase, returning the minimum wage to a historically low level in terms of purchasing power. The minimum wage has also lost significant ground compared to average hourly earnings in private employment. In the first quarter of 2004, the $5.15 minimum wage was only 33.2% of average hourly earnings ($15.52)—the lowest it has been in more than 50 years.

    Posted by Eric at 02:03 AM | Comments (9)

    More Graphic Pictures Emerge

    From the Washington Post:

    Mixed in with more than 1,000 digital pictures obtained by The Washington Post are photographs of naked men, apparently prisoners, sprawled on top of one another while soldiers stand around them. There is another photograph of a naked man with a dark hood over his head, handcuffed to a cell door. And another of a naked man handcuffed to a bunk bed, his arms splayed so wide that his back is arched. A pair of women's underwear covers his head and face.

    The graphic images, passed around among military police who served at the Abu Ghraib prison in Baghdad, are a new batch of photographs similar to those broadcast a week ago on CBS's "60 Minutes II" and published by the New Yorker magazine. They appear to provide further visual evidence of the chaos and unprofessionalism at the prison detailed in a report by Army Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba. His report, which relied in part on the photographs, found "numerous incidents of sadistic, blatant, and wanton criminal abuses" that were inflicted on detainees.

    So who is the ubiquitous woman in those pictures? A reservist from W.VA: Lynndie England

    Posted by Eric at 12:30 AM | Comments (19)

    More Graphic Pictures Emerge

    From the Washington Post:

    Mixed in with more than 1,000 digital pictures obtained by The Washington Post are photographs of naked men, apparently prisoners, sprawled on top of one another while soldiers stand around them. There is another photograph of a naked man with a dark hood over his head, handcuffed to a cell door. And another of a naked man handcuffed to a bunk bed, his arms splayed so wide that his back is arched. A pair of women's underwear covers his head and face.

    The graphic images, passed around among military police who served at the Abu Ghraib prison in Baghdad, are a new batch of photographs similar to those broadcast a week ago on CBS's "60 Minutes II" and published by the New Yorker magazine. They appear to provide further visual evidence of the chaos and unprofessionalism at the prison detailed in a report by Army Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba. His report, which relied in part on the photographs, found "numerous incidents of sadistic, blatant, and wanton criminal abuses" that were inflicted on detainees.

    So who is the ubiquitous woman in those pictures? A reservist from W.VA: Lynndie England

    Posted by Eric at 12:30 AM | Comments (4)

    May 05, 2004

    Wed Stories

    News
    WP. Methodists Condemn Homosexuality
    LAT. Kerry Zeroes In on High School Dropout Levels
    AP. Bush expresses dismay at U.S. treatment of Iraqi prisoners in interviews with Arab TV
    AP. Mass. study finds racial profiling widespread; State launches probe after report finds 3 out of every 4 police departments involved
    AP. American soldier, 15 Iraqis killed in clashes between Shiite militia and troops
    NYT. U.S. Commander to Keep 135,000 Troops in Iraq Through 2005
    NYT. Army Discloses Criminal Inquiry on Prison Abuse
    AP. Bush, Kerry tour buses made in Canada
    AP. Bush ads to follow Kerry's in Colo., La
    AP. Ex-Bush aide wins GOP governor nomination
    AP. Poll finds Kerry's image took beating

    Commentary
    Frank Smyth. U.S. shouldn't rely on Iraq's yes men
    SFC. Accountability
    American Prospect. The Next Step in Iraq: Should we stay; can we go? TAP debates the U.S. military presence in Iraq
    Tara McKelvey. Bias Crimes: David Brock once worked inside the "Republican noise machine." Now, with a new Web site, he's trying to silence it.
    CAP. Iraq: A Strategy for Progress
    Tim Grieve. Premature panic: The doom-and-gloom brigade is savaging Kerry because the race is still tied after Bush's horrible April. But the campaign has barely begun
    Robert Dreyfuss. Feith Meets Cabal
    Joe Conason. Sinclair censors Koppel, decency: GOP cronies in so-called 'liberal' media quash bad news from President's war
    Bill Berkowitz. Bush's desperate improvisations: Searing snapshots from a landscape of uncertainty
    Scot Lehigh. Does talk host Severin even care what's true?
    Robert Kuttner. Bush's mess is Kerry's peril
    Derrick Z. Jackson. US education suffers in waste of Iraq war

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (18)

    Wed Stories

    News
    WP. Methodists Condemn Homosexuality
    LAT. Kerry Zeroes In on High School Dropout Levels
    AP. Bush expresses dismay at U.S. treatment of Iraqi prisoners in interviews with Arab TV
    AP. Mass. study finds racial profiling widespread; State launches probe after report finds 3 out of every 4 police departments involved
    AP. American soldier, 15 Iraqis killed in clashes between Shiite militia and troops
    NYT. U.S. Commander to Keep 135,000 Troops in Iraq Through 2005
    NYT. Army Discloses Criminal Inquiry on Prison Abuse
    AP. Bush, Kerry tour buses made in Canada
    AP. Bush ads to follow Kerry's in Colo., La
    AP. Ex-Bush aide wins GOP governor nomination
    AP. Poll finds Kerry's image took beating

    Commentary
    Frank Smyth. U.S. shouldn't rely on Iraq's yes men
    SFC. Accountability
    American Prospect. The Next Step in Iraq: Should we stay; can we go? TAP debates the U.S. military presence in Iraq
    Tara McKelvey. Bias Crimes: David Brock once worked inside the "Republican noise machine." Now, with a new Web site, he's trying to silence it.
    CAP. Iraq: A Strategy for Progress
    Tim Grieve. Premature panic: The doom-and-gloom brigade is savaging Kerry because the race is still tied after Bush's horrible April. But the campaign has barely begun
    Robert Dreyfuss. Feith Meets Cabal
    Joe Conason. Sinclair censors Koppel, decency: GOP cronies in so-called 'liberal' media quash bad news from President's war
    Bill Berkowitz. Bush's desperate improvisations: Searing snapshots from a landscape of uncertainty
    Scot Lehigh. Does talk host Severin even care what's true?
    Robert Kuttner. Bush's mess is Kerry's peril
    Derrick Z. Jackson. US education suffers in waste of Iraq war

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (9)

    225 Species Need Protection

    According to the AP,

    Scientists, including acclaimed wildlife biologist Jane Goodall, joined environmental groups yesterday in petitioning the government to add 225 plants and animals to the endangered species list. Nearly half are in Hawai'i.

    The species are not new to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; four-fifths have been on the agency's waiting list for a decade. Some have been waiting since 1975. The average is 17 years.

    The 107 from Hawai'i include the band-rumped storm petrel, anchialine pool shrimp, several species of damseflies and the Lana'i tree snail.

    Learn more? The Center for Biological Diversity is the pointman on the issue.

    Posted by Eric at 07:05 PM | Comments (19)

    225 Species Need Protection

    According to the AP,

    Scientists, including acclaimed wildlife biologist Jane Goodall, joined environmental groups yesterday in petitioning the government to add 225 plants and animals to the endangered species list. Nearly half are in Hawai'i.

    The species are not new to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; four-fifths have been on the agency's waiting list for a decade. Some have been waiting since 1975. The average is 17 years.

    The 107 from Hawai'i include the band-rumped storm petrel, anchialine pool shrimp, several species of damseflies and the Lana'i tree snail.

    Learn more? The Center for Biological Diversity is the pointman on the issue.

    Posted by Eric at 07:05 PM | Comments (4)

    Bush Losing Approval

    Still, in a Quinnipiac University poll, Bush is leading Kerry:

    President Bush's approval rating hovers at an all time low, but if the election were held today more voters would still vote for Bush than his Democratic rival John Kerry, according to a poll published on Wednesday.

    The nationwide poll by Hamden, Connecticut-based Quinnipiac University found Republican Bush's lead over the Massachusetts senator had narrowed, but Kerry had not gained ground.

    If the Nov. 2 election were held today, 43 percent of the registered voters surveyed April 26-May 3 said they would vote for Bush, 40 percent for Kerry and 6 percent for independent Ralph Nader, the consumer advocate. Bush had a six-point lead over Kerry in the previous Quinnipiac poll published March 25 -- 46 percent to 40 percent.

    The poll found 46 percent of registered voters approve of the job Bush is doing and 47 percent disapprove. A CBS/New York Times survey released a week ago found the same result, which was down five points from early March and well below his 67 percent approval rating immediately after the fall of Baghdad a year ago.

    Posted by Eric at 06:47 PM | Comments (25)

    Bush Losing Approval

    Still, in a Quinnipiac University poll, Bush is leading Kerry:

    President Bush's approval rating hovers at an all time low, but if the election were held today more voters would still vote for Bush than his Democratic rival John Kerry, according to a poll published on Wednesday.

    The nationwide poll by Hamden, Connecticut-based Quinnipiac University found Republican Bush's lead over the Massachusetts senator had narrowed, but Kerry had not gained ground.

    If the Nov. 2 election were held today, 43 percent of the registered voters surveyed April 26-May 3 said they would vote for Bush, 40 percent for Kerry and 6 percent for independent Ralph Nader, the consumer advocate. Bush had a six-point lead over Kerry in the previous Quinnipiac poll published March 25 -- 46 percent to 40 percent.

    The poll found 46 percent of registered voters approve of the job Bush is doing and 47 percent disapprove. A CBS/New York Times survey released a week ago found the same result, which was down five points from early March and well below his 67 percent approval rating immediately after the fall of Baghdad a year ago.

    Posted by Eric at 06:47 PM | Comments (9)

    Nader Addressing the Important Issues

    Thank God for Ralph Nader, talking about the serious issues affecting this country that the mainstream media and Republicans and Democrats are too afraid to address.* WPost:

    Presidential candidate Ralph Nader called the advertisements on uniforms during Major League Baseball's season-opening series an "obscene embarrassment" and sent a letter of protest yesterday.

    "This overcommercialization is sapping the fun out of being a fan of major league baseball," Nader wrote in his letter to Commissioner Bud Selig. "Now, you have sunk to a greedy new low."

    The ads appeared on the uniform sleeves and caps of the New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Devil Rays during their two-game series in Tokyo on March 30-31.

    *sarcasm.

    Posted by Eric at 06:28 PM | Comments (24)

    Nader Addressing the Important Issues

    Thank God for Ralph Nader, talking about the serious issues affecting this country that the mainstream media and Republicans and Democrats are too afraid to address.* WPost:

    Presidential candidate Ralph Nader called the advertisements on uniforms during Major League Baseball's season-opening series an "obscene embarrassment" and sent a letter of protest yesterday.

    "This overcommercialization is sapping the fun out of being a fan of major league baseball," Nader wrote in his letter to Commissioner Bud Selig. "Now, you have sunk to a greedy new low."

    The ads appeared on the uniform sleeves and caps of the New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Devil Rays during their two-game series in Tokyo on March 30-31.

    *sarcasm.

    Posted by Eric at 06:28 PM | Comments (8)

    O'Reilly Still Obsessing About Clinton Sex Life

    From The Factor last night:

    O'REILLY: All right, so you don't know that for sure. Now in your article, you imply -- and correct me if I'm wrong, you imply that Bill Clinton still has an active social life with the ladies.

    ANSON: Well, I don't know that, but he is -- look, we're both Irish Catholics. This is what the nuns call proximate occasions of sin. He is putting himself in situations that at very least lend themselves to...

    O'REILLY: To gossip.

    ANSON: To gossip. And there is plenty of gossip.

    Click down for the full transcript.

    O'REILLY: OK. But you don't know for sure whether he is running and chasing, because let's face it, I mean, he is alone a lot. I think he's a lonely man. Maybe I'm wrong, but I think he's a lonely guy. And he has the most beautiful women in the world wanting to have dinner with him and hang around with him, correct? So I don't know how many guys would say no if you don't have anything else to do.

    ANSON: I'm not interested in the president's social life as social life, but it seems to me that after you have gone through what he did in 1998 to 2000, I don't expect him to enter a Trappist monastery, but I would think that he would be very careful about appearances. And it's not just me as a reporter who is worried about that kind of stuff.

    O'REILLY: But he's not.

    ANSON: People who are very, very close to him really are despairing of this kind of behavior.

    O'REILLY: Yes, he's not -- he goes and hangs around with who he wants to hang around with.

    ANSON: He basically has contempt for appearances.

    O'REILLY: Yes, I mean, if he wants to hang around with Naomi Campbell, he is going to do that.

    ANSON: Among others, yes.

    O'REILLY: Among other, right. We know that, but you don't know anything more than that, it's just appearances.

    ANSON: No, and I'm not interested...

    O'REILLY: OK. I know, I know, I know, I have got to ask these questions. I just said I think he's a lonely man, wrong?

    ANSON: I don't think -- well, he's -- I wouldn't say he is a lonely man, but he is certainly a man who craves company at all times. He has a difficult time being alone with the exception of alone late at night and reading...

    O'REILLY: And he and Hillary are not together very often, correct?

    ANSON: Well, he has got a big travel schedule and she has a fairly large travel schedule as well. I do think that when they are with each other -- I have talked to a number of their friends, and they say it's a very terrific relationship. I'm convinced of that.

    O'REILLY: OK. But they are apart much more than they are together?

    ANSON: Yes.

    Posted by Eric at 06:18 PM | Comments (24)

    O'Reilly Still Obsessing About Clinton Sex Life

    From The Factor last night:

    O'REILLY: All right, so you don't know that for sure. Now in your article, you imply -- and correct me if I'm wrong, you imply that Bill Clinton still has an active social life with the ladies.

    ANSON: Well, I don't know that, but he is -- look, we're both Irish Catholics. This is what the nuns call proximate occasions of sin. He is putting himself in situations that at very least lend themselves to...

    O'REILLY: To gossip.

    ANSON: To gossip. And there is plenty of gossip.

    Click down for the full transcript.

    O'REILLY: OK. But you don't know for sure whether he is running and chasing, because let's face it, I mean, he is alone a lot. I think he's a lonely man. Maybe I'm wrong, but I think he's a lonely guy. And he has the most beautiful women in the world wanting to have dinner with him and hang around with him, correct? So I don't know how many guys would say no if you don't have anything else to do.

    ANSON: I'm not interested in the president's social life as social life, but it seems to me that after you have gone through what he did in 1998 to 2000, I don't expect him to enter a Trappist monastery, but I would think that he would be very careful about appearances. And it's not just me as a reporter who is worried about that kind of stuff.

    O'REILLY: But he's not.

    ANSON: People who are very, very close to him really are despairing of this kind of behavior.

    O'REILLY: Yes, he's not -- he goes and hangs around with who he wants to hang around with.

    ANSON: He basically has contempt for appearances.

    O'REILLY: Yes, I mean, if he wants to hang around with Naomi Campbell, he is going to do that.

    ANSON: Among others, yes.

    O'REILLY: Among other, right. We know that, but you don't know anything more than that, it's just appearances.

    ANSON: No, and I'm not interested...

    O'REILLY: OK. I know, I know, I know, I have got to ask these questions. I just said I think he's a lonely man, wrong?

    ANSON: I don't think -- well, he's -- I wouldn't say he is a lonely man, but he is certainly a man who craves company at all times. He has a difficult time being alone with the exception of alone late at night and reading...

    O'REILLY: And he and Hillary are not together very often, correct?

    ANSON: Well, he has got a big travel schedule and she has a fairly large travel schedule as well. I do think that when they are with each other -- I have talked to a number of their friends, and they say it's a very terrific relationship. I'm convinced of that.

    O'REILLY: OK. But they are apart much more than they are together?

    ANSON: Yes.

    Posted by Eric at 06:18 PM | Comments (7)

    Kerry Leads in Rasmussen Poll

    47 - 43, in the daily tracking poll.

    Posted by Eric at 01:28 PM | Comments (43)

    Kerry Leads in Rasmussen Poll

    47 - 43, in the daily tracking poll.

    Posted by Eric at 01:28 PM | Comments (12)

    The Weird, Wacky World of Dick Morris

    Media Matters gets its foot in the door on Dick Morris and recent foot-in-the-mouth statements.

    Posted by Eric at 01:24 PM | Comments (7)

    The Weird, Wacky World of Dick Morris

    Media Matters gets its foot in the door on Dick Morris and recent foot-in-the-mouth statements.

    Posted by Eric at 01:24 PM | Comments (4)

    Salazar Ads

    Ken Salazar, the Senate Democratic candidate in Colorado, airing first ads.

    Salazar's ad can be found at his website.

    Posted by Eric at 01:18 PM | Comments (22)

    Salazar Ads

    Ken Salazar, the Senate Democratic candidate in Colorado, airing first ads.

    Salazar's ad can be found at his website.

    Posted by Eric at 01:18 PM | Comments (1)

    Kerry Wants to Challenge GOP at Convention

    Kerry getting tough? "Mr. Kerry will open a special New York office for the duration of the convention, and his campaign has already begun contacting local supporters, including Senator Hillary Clinton and City Council Speaker Gifford Miller, to coordinate a response to the G.O.P. gala." From the NY Observ:

    This early, combative approach to the convention, which will run from Aug. 30 to Sept. 2 in Madison Square Garden, reflects a year’s shift in the national mood. When the Republican National Committee announced its choice of New York in January 2003, President Bush’s approval rating was hovering at around 60 percent. "It seemed like a stroke of genius," said Democratic consultant Howard Wolfson of the G.O.P.’s decision to bring its convention to New York for the first time. The Democrats’ choice of Boston for their convention seemed a retreat, and they could only rail against the President for trying to capitalize on the memory of Sept. 11 in the city hit hardest by the attacks. Since then, however, the President’s approval ratings have sunk below 50 percent. The report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States, due out a month before the convention, is expected to lay out opportunities the Bush administration missed to preempt the attacks. And continued unrest in Iraq has made the war on terror an open political issue.
    Bush, by the way, has no chance in NY.

    Posted by Eric at 09:49 AM | Comments (31)

    Kerry Wants to Challenge GOP at Convention

    Kerry getting tough? "Mr. Kerry will open a special New York office for the duration of the convention, and his campaign has already begun contacting local supporters, including Senator Hillary Clinton and City Council Speaker Gifford Miller, to coordinate a response to the G.O.P. gala." From the NY Observ:

    This early, combative approach to the convention, which will run from Aug. 30 to Sept. 2 in Madison Square Garden, reflects a year’s shift in the national mood. When the Republican National Committee announced its choice of New York in January 2003, President Bush’s approval rating was hovering at around 60 percent. "It seemed like a stroke of genius," said Democratic consultant Howard Wolfson of the G.O.P.’s decision to bring its convention to New York for the first time. The Democrats’ choice of Boston for their convention seemed a retreat, and they could only rail against the President for trying to capitalize on the memory of Sept. 11 in the city hit hardest by the attacks. Since then, however, the President’s approval ratings have sunk below 50 percent. The report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States, due out a month before the convention, is expected to lay out opportunities the Bush administration missed to preempt the attacks. And continued unrest in Iraq has made the war on terror an open political issue.
    Bush, by the way, has no chance in NY.

    Posted by Eric at 09:49 AM | Comments (4)

    The Vanishing Vote?

    According to Greg Palast, because of some recent election reforms, 2004 will see similar vote spoiling to 2000. Especially affected will be the minority vote. From The Nation:

    That's Florida. Now let's talk about America. In the 2000 election, 1.9 million votes cast were never counted. Spoiled for technical reasons, like writing in Gore's name, machine malfunctions and so on. The reasons for ballot rejection vary, but there's a suspicious shading to the ballots tossed into the dumpster. Edley's team of Harvard experts discovered that just as in Florida, the number of ballots spoiled was--county by county, precinct by precinct--in direct proportion to the local black voting population.

    Florida's racial profile mirrors the nation's--both in the percentage of voters who are black and the racial profile of the voters whose ballots don't count. "In 2000, a black voter in Florida was ten times as likely to have their vote spoiled--not counted--as a white voter," explains political scientist Philip Klinkner, co-author of Edley's Harvard report. "National figures indicate that Florida is, surprisingly, typical. Given the proportion of nonwhite to white voters in America, then, it appears that about half of all ballots spoiled in the USA, as many as 1 million votes, were cast by nonwhite voters."

    So there you have it. In the last presidential election, approximately 1 million black and other minorities voted, and their ballots were thrown away. And they will be tossed again in November 2004, efficiently, by computer--because HAVA and other bogus reform measures, stressing reform through complex computerization, do not address, and in fact worsen, the racial bias of the uncounted vote.

    Posted by Eric at 05:09 AM | Comments (2)

    The Vanishing Vote?

    According to Greg Palast, because of some recent election reforms, 2004 will see similar vote spoiling to 2000. Especially affected will be the minority vote. From The Nation:

    That's Florida. Now let's talk about America. In the 2000 election, 1.9 million votes cast were never counted. Spoiled for technical reasons, like writing in Gore's name, machine malfunctions and so on. The reasons for ballot rejection vary, but there's a suspicious shading to the ballots tossed into the dumpster. Edley's team of Harvard experts discovered that just as in Florida, the number of ballots spoiled was--county by county, precinct by precinct--in direct proportion to the local black voting population.

    Florida's racial profile mirrors the nation's--both in the percentage of voters who are black and the racial profile of the voters whose ballots don't count. "In 2000, a black voter in Florida was ten times as likely to have their vote spoiled--not counted--as a white voter," explains political scientist Philip Klinkner, co-author of Edley's Harvard report. "National figures indicate that Florida is, surprisingly, typical. Given the proportion of nonwhite to white voters in America, then, it appears that about half of all ballots spoiled in the USA, as many as 1 million votes, were cast by nonwhite voters."

    So there you have it. In the last presidential election, approximately 1 million black and other minorities voted, and their ballots were thrown away. And they will be tossed again in November 2004, efficiently, by computer--because HAVA and other bogus reform measures, stressing reform through complex computerization, do not address, and in fact worsen, the racial bias of the uncounted vote.

    Posted by Eric at 05:09 AM | Comments (3)

    GQ: Colin Powell Wants Out

    According to Wil S. Hylton in GQ, Colin is "salvaging his legacy" and looking for the exit. The, well, sad profile.

    I had come to see Powell because, for several weeks, his closest friends and colleagues had been telegraphing a story to me. Powell was finished, they'd said. Exhausted. Frustrated. Bitter. He was uncomfortable with the president's agenda and fatigued from his battles with the Pentagon. His reputation had been stained by his speech at the U.N. in February 2003, when he insisted that Iraq had stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction, and as the journalist Bob Woodward has noted in Plan of Attack, he was despondent about being cut out of the war plan in Iraq. In the months since those humiliations, as the body count mounted and the WMDs never appeared, his enthusiasm for the job had waned. His enthusiasm for the whole administration had waned. As his mentor from the National War College, Harlan Ullman, described it, "This is, in many ways, the most ideological administration Powell's ever had to work for. Not only is it very ideological, but they have a vision. And I think Powell is inherently uncomfortable with grand visions like that." Or as Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage said of Powell's disastrous speech at the U.N. last year, "It's a source of great distress for the secretary." Or as Powell's chief of staff, Larry Wilkerson, put it, "He's tired. Mentally and physically."

    None of Powell's friends had made any pretense of speculating about or guessing at his feelings. They spoke for him, openly and on the record. Some even went so far as to alert me when something they said was not coming from Powell or had not been expressed by him. And now, at the tail end of my reporting, I was going to hear from Powell himself. He had invited me in for a rare one-hour chat. Not to the formal sitting room, where he entertains state visitors—the room he calls "the funeral parlor"—but the dark, private cubbyhole where he actually spends his day. As I settled into my chair, I couldn't help wondering what he wanted to say. I knew from his staff that he had been briefed on my interviews with his friends and knew exactly what I had been told, in detail. But I also knew that however disenchanted and humiliated he may have felt, however severe his disillusionment and frustration, he was a soldier, unlikely to speak out against a sitting president or discuss his battles with the administration. It seemed unlikely he would even admit the urge to retire. So where, exactly, did that leave us?

    If you think he's tired, don't ask about the guys Powell sent to war under false pretenses.

    Posted by Eric at 12:39 AM | Comments (40)

    GQ: Colin Powell Wants Out

    According to Wil S. Hylton in GQ, Colin is "salvaging his legacy" and looking for the exit. The, well, sad profile.

    I had come to see Powell because, for several weeks, his closest friends and colleagues had been telegraphing a story to me. Powell was finished, they'd said. Exhausted. Frustrated. Bitter. He was uncomfortable with the president's agenda and fatigued from his battles with the Pentagon. His reputation had been stained by his speech at the U.N. in February 2003, when he insisted that Iraq had stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction, and as the journalist Bob Woodward has noted in Plan of Attack, he was despondent about being cut out of the war plan in Iraq. In the months since those humiliations, as the body count mounted and the WMDs never appeared, his enthusiasm for the job had waned. His enthusiasm for the whole administration had waned. As his mentor from the National War College, Harlan Ullman, described it, "This is, in many ways, the most ideological administration Powell's ever had to work for. Not only is it very ideological, but they have a vision. And I think Powell is inherently uncomfortable with grand visions like that." Or as Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage said of Powell's disastrous speech at the U.N. last year, "It's a source of great distress for the secretary." Or as Powell's chief of staff, Larry Wilkerson, put it, "He's tired. Mentally and physically."

    None of Powell's friends had made any pretense of speculating about or guessing at his feelings. They spoke for him, openly and on the record. Some even went so far as to alert me when something they said was not coming from Powell or had not been expressed by him. And now, at the tail end of my reporting, I was going to hear from Powell himself. He had invited me in for a rare one-hour chat. Not to the formal sitting room, where he entertains state visitors—the room he calls "the funeral parlor"—but the dark, private cubbyhole where he actually spends his day. As I settled into my chair, I couldn't help wondering what he wanted to say. I knew from his staff that he had been briefed on my interviews with his friends and knew exactly what I had been told, in detail. But I also knew that however disenchanted and humiliated he may have felt, however severe his disillusionment and frustration, he was a soldier, unlikely to speak out against a sitting president or discuss his battles with the administration. It seemed unlikely he would even admit the urge to retire. So where, exactly, did that leave us?

    If you think he's tired, don't ask about the guys Powell sent to war under false pretenses.

    Posted by Eric at 12:39 AM | Comments (8)

    Disney Wants Moore Flick Gone

    Fahrenheit 911, the new Michael Moore movie, is being pushed away by the Disney company. NY Times:

    Mr. Moore's agent, Ari Emanuel, said Michael D. Eisner, Disney's chief executive, asked him last spring to pull out of the deal with Miramax. Mr. Emanuel said Mr. Eisner expressed particular concern that it would endanger tax breaks Disney receives for its theme park, hotels and other ventures in Florida, where Mr. Bush's brother, Jeb, is governor.

    "Michael Eisner asked me not to sell this movie to Harvey Weinstein; that doesn't mean I listened to him," Mr. Emanuel said. "He definitely indicated there were tax incentives he was getting for the Disney corporation and that's why he didn't want me to sell it to Miramax. He didn't want a Disney company involved."

    Disney claims it has to do with the family-friendly atmosphere at Disney:
    A senior Disney executive elaborated that the company had the right to quash Miramax's distribution of films if it deemed their distribution to be against the interests of the company. The executive said Mr. Moore's film is deemed to be against Disney's interests not because of the company's business dealings with the government but because Disney caters to families of all political stripes and believes Mr. Moore's film, which does not have a release date, could alienate many.

    Posted by Eric at 12:19 AM | Comments (20)

    Disney Wants Moore Flick Gone

    Fahrenheit 911, the new Michael Moore movie, is being pushed away by the Disney company. NY Times:

    Mr. Moore's agent, Ari Emanuel, said Michael D. Eisner, Disney's chief executive, asked him last spring to pull out of the deal with Miramax. Mr. Emanuel said Mr. Eisner expressed particular concern that it would endanger tax breaks Disney receives for its theme park, hotels and other ventures in Florida, where Mr. Bush's brother, Jeb, is governor.

    "Michael Eisner asked me not to sell this movie to Harvey Weinstein; that doesn't mean I listened to him," Mr. Emanuel said. "He definitely indicated there were tax incentives he was getting for the Disney corporation and that's why he didn't want me to sell it to Miramax. He didn't want a Disney company involved."

    Disney claims it has to do with the family-friendly atmosphere at Disney:
    A senior Disney executive elaborated that the company had the right to quash Miramax's distribution of films if it deemed their distribution to be against the interests of the company. The executive said Mr. Moore's film is deemed to be against Disney's interests not because of the company's business dealings with the government but because Disney caters to families of all political stripes and believes Mr. Moore's film, which does not have a release date, could alienate many.

    Posted by Eric at 12:19 AM | Comments (5)

    Ralph Reed Likes Fox News

    So should you. AP:

    Now a regional chairman for the Bush-Cheney campaign, Ralph Reed said he depends on the Internet, conservative talk show hosts and the Fox News network to get his information about the world.

    And he urged Nevadans to do the same.

    "Twenty-five years ago, most people got their news from ABC, CBS or NBC," Reed said in a speech Friday night to the Nevada Republican Party's state convention. "Fortunately, that is no longer the case. The gatekeepers of dominant media have lost their monopoly on information."

    Reed told the crowd of about 250 Republicans that he has not watched a newscast of a major network in years.

    "I get in the car in the morning and listen to Rush Limbaugh. On the way home, I listen to Sean Hannity. At night I watch Fox News," he said.

    Posted by Eric at 12:16 AM | Comments (17)

    Ralph Reed Likes Fox News

    So should you. AP:

    Now a regional chairman for the Bush-Cheney campaign, Ralph Reed said he depends on the Internet, conservative talk show hosts and the Fox News network to get his information about the world.

    And he urged Nevadans to do the same.

    "Twenty-five years ago, most people got their news from ABC, CBS or NBC," Reed said in a speech Friday night to the Nevada Republican Party's state convention. "Fortunately, that is no longer the case. The gatekeepers of dominant media have lost their monopoly on information."

    Reed told the crowd of about 250 Republicans that he has not watched a newscast of a major network in years.

    "I get in the car in the morning and listen to Rush Limbaugh. On the way home, I listen to Sean Hannity. At night I watch Fox News," he said.

    Posted by Eric at 12:16 AM | Comments (10)

    May 04, 2004

    Tuesday Stories

    News
    BGlobe. $25m ad campaign showcases Kerry's career
    BGlobe. Bush team takes hit on secret files
    LAT. Bush, Kerry Awash in Money
    LAT. President Rolls Through Battleground States
    SFC. 3,500 in San Jose honor Pat Tillman's life, sacrifice
    NYT. Housing Subsidies for the Poor Threatened by Cuts in U.S. Aid
    NYT. Army Punishes 7 With Reprimands for Prison Abuse
    NYT. Agency Sees Withholding of Medicare Data From Congress as Illegal
    NYT. Court Rulings on Emissions Sharply Split Two Groups
    NYT. Military Defenders for Detainees Put Tribunals on Trial
    WP. Caught Over a Barrel: Soaring Gas Prices Have Motorists' Wallets Running on Empty
    AP. 10 years later, Paula Jones has modest place in history
    CNN. Sharon to press on after Gaza plan rejected
    AP. Kerry Pledges to Increase High School Graduation Rates
    WP. New Drug Card for Medicare Touted by GOP: Officials Target Confusion, Frustration Over Program
    AP. Methodists protest ban on ordaining gays
    Reuters. More Iraqis Allege Abuse by U.S. Military
    Reuters. Bush Promises Better Days for Slumping Ohio
    AFP. Turmoil fear over Iraq handover

    Commentary
    Mary Lynn F. Jones. Roadkill: In an effort to steamroll Democrats, Republicans are holding up an important bill that would help U.S. highways
    Matthew Yglesias. On the Ground: Official reports on the progress of Iraqi reconstruction are anything but encouraging
    Robert Scheer. When We're the Evildoers in Iraq
    Miami Herald. Images of abuse speak to U.S. policy adrift
    Bill Press. BUSH AND CHENEY DIDN'T HAVE ANY MEDALS TO THROW AWAY
    Jesse Jackson. Time to cut our losses in Iraq
    Jarrett Barrios. Assault weapons must be banned -- again
    Mindy Lubber. Global warming's bottom line
    Monroe H. Freedman. Scalia no stranger to Cheney's corner
    Seattle PI. Torture: This shame tinges all Americans
    Jay Inslee. Need for organ donations increases
    Krugman. Battlefield of Dreams
    EJ Dionne. Kerry and His Church
    Marcus Corbin. Paying for Iraq
    Amanda Griscom. The Toxic EPA
    Ray Takeyh. Iran's Iraq Policy
    American Progress. President Bush's Disaster in Iraq

    Posted by Eric at 11:51 PM | Comments (15)

    Tuesday Stories

    News
    BGlobe. $25m ad campaign showcases Kerry's career
    BGlobe. Bush team takes hit on secret files
    LAT. Bush, Kerry Awash in Money
    LAT. President Rolls Through Battleground States
    SFC. 3,500 in San Jose honor Pat Tillman's life, sacrifice
    NYT. Housing Subsidies for the Poor Threatened by Cuts in U.S. Aid
    NYT. Army Punishes 7 With Reprimands for Prison Abuse
    NYT. Agency Sees Withholding of Medicare Data From Congress as Illegal
    NYT. Court Rulings on Emissions Sharply Split Two Groups
    NYT. Military Defenders for Detainees Put Tribunals on Trial
    WP. Caught Over a Barrel: Soaring Gas Prices Have Motorists' Wallets Running on Empty
    AP. 10 years later, Paula Jones has modest place in history
    CNN. Sharon to press on after Gaza plan rejected
    AP. Kerry Pledges to Increase High School Graduation Rates
    WP. New Drug Card for Medicare Touted by GOP: Officials Target Confusion, Frustration Over Program
    AP. Methodists protest ban on ordaining gays
    Reuters. More Iraqis Allege Abuse by U.S. Military
    Reuters. Bush Promises Better Days for Slumping Ohio
    AFP. Turmoil fear over Iraq handover

    Commentary
    Mary Lynn F. Jones. Roadkill: In an effort to steamroll Democrats, Republicans are holding up an important bill that would help U.S. highways
    Matthew Yglesias. On the Ground: Official reports on the progress of Iraqi reconstruction are anything but encouraging
    Robert Scheer. When We're the Evildoers in Iraq
    Miami Herald. Images of abuse speak to U.S. policy adrift
    Bill Press. BUSH AND CHENEY DIDN'T HAVE ANY MEDALS TO THROW AWAY
    Jesse Jackson. Time to cut our losses in Iraq
    Jarrett Barrios. Assault weapons must be banned -- again
    Mindy Lubber. Global warming's bottom line
    Monroe H. Freedman. Scalia no stranger to Cheney's corner
    Seattle PI. Torture: This shame tinges all Americans
    Jay Inslee. Need for organ donations increases
    Krugman. Battlefield of Dreams
    EJ Dionne. Kerry and His Church
    Marcus Corbin. Paying for Iraq
    Amanda Griscom. The Toxic EPA
    Ray Takeyh. Iran's Iraq Policy
    American Progress. President Bush's Disaster in Iraq

    Posted by Eric at 11:51 PM | Comments (4)

    The Oprah Show is Offensive

    So much so that, as someone emailed to the FCC, "my child's head literally exploded."

    Posted by Eric at 07:26 PM | Comments (46)

    The Oprah Show is Offensive

    So much so that, as someone emailed to the FCC, "my child's head literally exploded."

    Posted by Eric at 07:26 PM | Comments (9)

    $2 Gas Price Likely

    Jimmine Crickets! USA Today:

    Motorists organization AAA, using a different method, reported a record nationwide average of $1.821. It means a $2 nationwide average is likely, soon.

    "There are a lot of places in the country where they've never had to put a '2' on those (gas station) signs, but we'll see $2 a lot," says Tom Kloza, senior oil analyst at the Oil Price Information Service. "You'll find '2' in every state, but not '3.' "

    At the same time, wholesale prices for gas and the crude oil from which it's made continue to rise, presaging higher pump prices.

    Posted by Eric at 05:14 PM | Comments (18)

    $2 Gas Price Likely

    Jimmine Crickets! USA Today:

    Motorists organization AAA, using a different method, reported a record nationwide average of $1.821. It means a $2 nationwide average is likely, soon.

    "There are a lot of places in the country where they've never had to put a '2' on those (gas station) signs, but we'll see $2 a lot," says Tom Kloza, senior oil analyst at the Oil Price Information Service. "You'll find '2' in every state, but not '3.' "

    At the same time, wholesale prices for gas and the crude oil from which it's made continue to rise, presaging higher pump prices.

    Posted by Eric at 05:14 PM | Comments (10)

    Gore Gets TV Net

    More details TBA. Hollywood Reporter:

    An investment group led by former Vice President Al Gore is expected to announce the acquisition of cable network News World International from Vivendi Universal Tuesday at the National Cable & Telecommunications Assn. convention in New Orleans. Gore, who is expected to first tour the convention floor along with his business partner in the venture, entrepreneur Joel Hyatt, is scheduled to host a press conference announcing the acquisition at noon CT. Details of the new channel were not yet disclosed.

    Posted by Eric at 01:10 PM | Comments (1)

    Gore Gets TV Net

    More details TBA. Hollywood Reporter:

    An investment group led by former Vice President Al Gore is expected to announce the acquisition of cable network News World International from Vivendi Universal Tuesday at the National Cable & Telecommunications Assn. convention in New Orleans. Gore, who is expected to first tour the convention floor along with his business partner in the venture, entrepreneur Joel Hyatt, is scheduled to host a press conference announcing the acquisition at noon CT. Details of the new channel were not yet disclosed.

    Posted by Eric at 01:10 PM | Comments (2)

    Tommy Thompson's Huge Savings

    From CAP's The Progress Report:

    Seniors who enroll in new Medicare drug card plans can expect "huge savings" on their prescriptions.

    - Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson, 4/29/04

    VERSUS

    "The analysis finds that the prices available with the new Medicare discount drug cards are far higher than the prices available in Canada and the prices negotiated by the federal government on the Federal Supply Schedule, and are no lower than the prices currently available to individuals who do not have the cards."

    - Report of the House Government Reform Committee, April 2004

    Posted by Eric at 12:01 PM | Comments (13)

    Tommy Thompson's Huge Savings

    From CAP's The Progress Report:

    Seniors who enroll in new Medicare drug card plans can expect "huge savings" on their prescriptions.

    - Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson, 4/29/04

    VERSUS

    "The analysis finds that the prices available with the new Medicare discount drug cards are far higher than the prices available in Canada and the prices negotiated by the federal government on the Federal Supply Schedule, and are no lower than the prices currently available to individuals who do not have the cards."

    - Report of the House Government Reform Committee, April 2004

    Posted by Eric at 12:01 PM | Comments (12)

    FCC Commish: "Clear Channelization" of American radio

    The Democrat on the FCC says his agency is barely representing the public interest. Rather, corporate interests such as ... um, hm, NPR I guess, is being represented:

    "We are skirting dangerously close to taking the public interest out of the public airwaves," Copps said at the Future of Music Coalition's policy summit, a conference of musicians, record industry executives, lawmakers and civil liberties activists.

    Copps was one of two dissenters in the five-member commission's vote last June to ease regulations on media ownership. That ruling was motivated by the notion that the strict regulations in place -- intended to protect against monopoly of the airwaves -- became obsolete with the proliferation of such information and entertainment sources as the Internet and cable.

    Copps said the Federal Communications Commission is moving in the wrong direction by allowing diverse perspectives and local interests and talent to be trumped by the homogenizing forces of media giants that dominate many of the nation's media markets.

    One of the main failures of the FCC, according to Copps, is increased consolidation.

    Posted by Eric at 11:37 AM | Comments (12)

    FCC Commish: "Clear Channelization" of American radio

    The Democrat on the FCC says his agency is barely representing the public interest. Rather, corporate interests such as ... um, hm, NPR I guess, is being represented:

    "We are skirting dangerously close to taking the public interest out of the public airwaves," Copps said at the Future of Music Coalition's policy summit, a conference of musicians, record industry executives, lawmakers and civil liberties activists.

    Copps was one of two dissenters in the five-member commission's vote last June to ease regulations on media ownership. That ruling was motivated by the notion that the strict regulations in place -- intended to protect against monopoly of the airwaves -- became obsolete with the proliferation of such information and entertainment sources as the Internet and cable.

    Copps said the Federal Communications Commission is moving in the wrong direction by allowing diverse perspectives and local interests and talent to be trumped by the homogenizing forces of media giants that dominate many of the nation's media markets.

    One of the main failures of the FCC, according to Copps, is increased consolidation.

    Posted by Eric at 11:37 AM | Comments (6)

    Steve Jobs to Join Kerry

    The hip CEO is joining the Kerry economic team, SF Chronicle:

    Jobs' involvement is not a surprise, either, considering the Silicon Valley icon has the last Democratic presidential candidate, former Vice President Al Gore, sitting on Apple's six-person board of directors.

    Jobs also has been generous to the Democratic Party in recent years. Since 1996, he has donated more than $200,000 to the Democratic National Committee as well as individual Democrats such as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco and Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts, according to an online database managed by the nonprofit Center for Responsive Politics.

    Jobs, who has double duty as CEO of both Cupertino's Apple Computer Inc. and Emeryville's Pixar Animation Studios, has been getting lots of attention lately as an executive who successfully bridged the gap between high tech and Hollywood.

    "I associate Jobs with something cutting edge and exciting," Pitney said. "And that's important for (Kerry), who often comes across as dull. He can stir up a crowd, but very often, he gets to be a wooden legislator."

    Posted by Eric at 11:29 AM | Comments (23)

    Steve Jobs to Join Kerry

    The hip CEO is joining the Kerry economic team, SF Chronicle:

    Jobs' involvement is not a surprise, either, considering the Silicon Valley icon has the last Democratic presidential candidate, former Vice President Al Gore, sitting on Apple's six-person board of directors.

    Jobs also has been generous to the Democratic Party in recent years. Since 1996, he has donated more than $200,000 to the Democratic National Committee as well as individual Democrats such as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco and Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts, according to an online database managed by the nonprofit Center for Responsive Politics.

    Jobs, who has double duty as CEO of both Cupertino's Apple Computer Inc. and Emeryville's Pixar Animation Studios, has been getting lots of attention lately as an executive who successfully bridged the gap between high tech and Hollywood.

    "I associate Jobs with something cutting edge and exciting," Pitney said. "And that's important for (Kerry), who often comes across as dull. He can stir up a crowd, but very often, he gets to be a wooden legislator."

    Posted by Eric at 11:29 AM | Comments (16)

    The Day After Tomorrow

    Silly. The second trailer.

    But if it starts a dialogue ...

    Posted by Eric at 01:26 AM | Comments (25)

    The Day After Tomorrow

    Silly. The second trailer.

    But if it starts a dialogue ...

    Posted by Eric at 01:26 AM | Comments (9)

    Roy Moore, Oh Four?

    Will the conservative religious icon attempt a run for the White House, thus stealing a portion of Bush's base, ala Nader? Salon:

    Meanwhile, the 57-year-old Moore is acting more and more like a candidate as he crisscrosses the country, speaking at gatherings of Christian rightists, home-schoolers and state conventions of the far-right Constitution Party, which was on 41 state ballots in the 2000 election, and is courting Moore to head its ticket. If he ran on the Constitution Party ticket, he would probably be on more state ballots than Nader this year. With 320,000 members it is the third-largest party in the U.S, in terms of registered voters.

    Will the dynamics of the race change if Moore throws his hat in the ring? Hastings Wyman, a former aide to the late Sen. Strom Thurmond, R-S.C., and editor of the Southern Political Report, thinks so. Wyman told Salon that he thinks Moore has the potential to "do to Bush what Nader did to Gore." Other Republican and Democratic strategists aren't so sure, but no one thinks Bush can stand much erosion in his base. Certainly some Republican leaders take Moore seriously enough to quietly court him, hoping to keep him in the party and preserve the president's Christian far-right constituency.

    The deadline for Moore to declare himself is the June 22-26 Constitution Party national convention, in Valley Forge, Pa. Even a few months can be an eternity in politics. But in recent weeks, Moore has spoken to Constitution Party state conventions in Oregon, Montana, Pennsylvania, Nevada and Ohio. And a Moore for President Web site has popped up. Meanwhile, Moore, like many a pol before him, is keeping his finger to the wind and everyone at the edge of their seats.

    For Moore? Go to the website.

    Posted by Eric at 12:56 AM | Comments (6)

    Roy Moore, Oh Four?

    Will the conservative religious icon attempt a run for the White House, thus stealing a portion of Bush's base, ala Nader? Salon:

    Meanwhile, the 57-year-old Moore is acting more and more like a candidate as he crisscrosses the country, speaking at gatherings of Christian rightists, home-schoolers and state conventions of the far-right Constitution Party, which was on 41 state ballots in the 2000 election, and is courting Moore to head its ticket. If he ran on the Constitution Party ticket, he would probably be on more state ballots than Nader this year. With 320,000 members it is the third-largest party in the U.S, in terms of registered voters.

    Will the dynamics of the race change if Moore throws his hat in the ring? Hastings Wyman, a former aide to the late Sen. Strom Thurmond, R-S.C., and editor of the Southern Political Report, thinks so. Wyman told Salon that he thinks Moore has the potential to "do to Bush what Nader did to Gore." Other Republican and Democratic strategists aren't so sure, but no one thinks Bush can stand much erosion in his base. Certainly some Republican leaders take Moore seriously enough to quietly court him, hoping to keep him in the party and preserve the president's Christian far-right constituency.

    The deadline for Moore to declare himself is the June 22-26 Constitution Party national convention, in Valley Forge, Pa. Even a few months can be an eternity in politics. But in recent weeks, Moore has spoken to Constitution Party state conventions in Oregon, Montana, Pennsylvania, Nevada and Ohio. And a Moore for President Web site has popped up. Meanwhile, Moore, like many a pol before him, is keeping his finger to the wind and everyone at the edge of their seats.

    For Moore? Go to the website.

    Posted by Eric at 12:56 AM | Comments (2)

    MSNBC Trying to Outfox Fox Again

    The network that nobody watches is testing out a conservative radio talk show host as a legit TV news anchor. From Media Matters:

    Bud Hedinger, whose radio talk show airs between The Rush Limbaugh Show and The Dr. Laura Schlessinger Program on 540 AM (WFLF) in Orlando, Florida, debuted today for a test run as an anchor for MSNBC Live, which airs between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays. "If they like what I do, they'll hire me," Hedinger told his hometown paper, the Orlando Sentinel on May 2.

    According to the Sentinel, Hedinger "demonstrates his passion for George W. Bush through songs like 'God Bless Our President,'" which he sings on the air during his radio show.

    In contrast with his fervor for Bush, on the website for his radio show, Hedinger asserts disdain for Senator Hillary Clinton, whom he calls "Hanoi Hillary." "THE BUDMAN URGES YOU TO PROTEST! HILLARY BLASTS BUSH IN ARAB PRESS INTERVIEW," Hedinger blares on his website, providing readers with a link to an April 27 NewsMax.com article reporting that Senator Hillary Clinton had criticized Bush in an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, an Arab newspaper. However, as Media Matters for America documented on May 3 -- in response to MSNBC host Joe Scarborough making the same false statement on his program, Scarborough Country -- Clinton was never interviewed by the Arab paper.

    Posted by Eric at 12:49 AM | Comments (30)

    MSNBC Trying to Outfox Fox Again

    The network that nobody watches is testing out a conservative radio talk show host as a legit TV news anchor. From Media Matters:

    Bud Hedinger, whose radio talk show airs between The Rush Limbaugh Show and The Dr. Laura Schlessinger Program on 540 AM (WFLF) in Orlando, Florida, debuted today for a test run as an anchor for MSNBC Live, which airs between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays. "If they like what I do, they'll hire me," Hedinger told his hometown paper, the Orlando Sentinel on May 2.

    According to the Sentinel, Hedinger "demonstrates his passion for George W. Bush through songs like 'God Bless Our President,'" which he sings on the air during his radio show.

    In contrast with his fervor for Bush, on the website for his radio show, Hedinger asserts disdain for Senator Hillary Clinton, whom he calls "Hanoi Hillary." "THE BUDMAN URGES YOU TO PROTEST! HILLARY BLASTS BUSH IN ARAB PRESS INTERVIEW," Hedinger blares on his website, providing readers with a link to an April 27 NewsMax.com article reporting that Senator Hillary Clinton had criticized Bush in an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, an Arab newspaper. However, as Media Matters for America documented on May 3 -- in response to MSNBC host Joe Scarborough making the same false statement on his program, Scarborough Country -- Clinton was never interviewed by the Arab paper.

    Posted by Eric at 12:49 AM | Comments (4)

    82% of Canada Dislike Bush, Eh?

    What a bunch of hosers, eh? What say you, poll:

    More than eight in 10 Canadians harbour a strong dislike for U.S. President George Bush, according to a new poll released, hours before Prime Minister Paul Martin met the U.S. leader on Friday.

    Eighty-two percent of people polled by Ipsos-Reid for CTV and The Globe and Mail agreed with the statement that Bush "is not necessarily a friend of Canada and doesn't really know anything when it comes to Canadian issues."

    Bill O'Reilly is sticking it to Canada in his own boycotting way.

    Posted by Eric at 12:47 AM | Comments (155)

    82% of Canada Dislike Bush, Eh?

    What a bunch of hosers, eh? What say you, poll:

    More than eight in 10 Canadians harbour a strong dislike for U.S. President George Bush, according to a new poll released, hours before Prime Minister Paul Martin met the U.S. leader on Friday.

    Eighty-two percent of people polled by Ipsos-Reid for CTV and The Globe and Mail agreed with the statement that Bush "is not necessarily a friend of Canada and doesn't really know anything when it comes to Canadian issues."

    Bill O'Reilly is sticking it to Canada in his own boycotting way.

    Posted by Eric at 12:47 AM | Comments (11)

    May 03, 2004

    Monday Stories

    News
    WP. 11 Troops Killed in Attacks In Iraq; Military Backtracks on Fallujah Brigade Leader; Civilian Hostage Found
    WP. Small Donors Grow Into Big Political Force: Both Parties See Number Of Contributors Soaring
    Bloomberg. U.S. Army Reprimands 6 for Iraqi Prisoner Abuse
    AP. Heavy well use puts Oregon farmers in water crisis
    AP. Iraqi Prisoner Details Abuse by Americans
    AP. Bremer Takes Back Statements About Bush
    WP. 'Modern-Day Slavery' Prompts Rescue Efforts: Groups Target Abuse of Foreign Maids, Nannies
    NYT. Views of Iraq Through 'Vietnam Eyes'
    NYT. U.S. Is Losing Its Dominance in the Sciences
    NYT. Report on Abuse Faults 2 Officers in Intelligence
    LAT. Kerry's Low Profile May Cost Crucial Latino Votes
    AP. Dole rises to Kerry's defense over Vietnam
    BGlobe. Both parties reaching for votes from abroad
    Reuters. Daily Mirror Stands by Iraqi Prisoner Abuse Photos
    BBC. 'Torture' photos dominate papers

    Commentary
    David Sarasohn. Opposition to Bush: terrorist or racist?
    Sidney Blumenthal. For Bush, lies follow lies: For those who backed Bush, the argument over the Iraq war has moved beyond facts and on to pure fervor
    EJ Perkins. Could Abe Lincoln win the presidency today?
    Robert O. Boorstin. The Casualties of Certainty
    Paul Waldman. Laying Out the Bait: President Bush knows how to build a straw man - his critics shouldn't bite
    Joe Conason. I accuse: Joseph Wilson, author of "The Politics of Truth," talks about his prime suspect in the White House smear campaign against him and his wife
    NYT. The Nightmare at Abu Ghraib
    Tom Maertens. Our invasion made matters worse
    Sheryl McCarthy. Higher minimum wage urgently needed in NY
    Lawrence J. Korb. 11-Step Program for Iraq Failure

    Posted by Eric at 11:45 PM | Comments (2)

    Monday Stories

    News
    WP. 11 Troops Killed in Attacks In Iraq; Military Backtracks on Fallujah Brigade Leader; Civilian Hostage Found
    WP. Small Donors Grow Into Big Political Force: Both Parties See Number Of Contributors Soaring
    Bloomberg. U.S. Army Reprimands 6 for Iraqi Prisoner Abuse
    AP. Heavy well use puts Oregon farmers in water crisis
    AP. Iraqi Prisoner Details Abuse by Americans
    AP. Bremer Takes Back Statements About Bush
    WP. 'Modern-Day Slavery' Prompts Rescue Efforts: Groups Target Abuse of Foreign Maids, Nannies
    NYT. Views of Iraq Through 'Vietnam Eyes'
    NYT. U.S. Is Losing Its Dominance in the Sciences
    NYT. Report on Abuse Faults 2 Officers in Intelligence
    LAT. Kerry's Low Profile May Cost Crucial Latino Votes
    AP. Dole rises to Kerry's defense over Vietnam
    BGlobe. Both parties reaching for votes from abroad
    Reuters. Daily Mirror Stands by Iraqi Prisoner Abuse Photos
    BBC. 'Torture' photos dominate papers

    Commentary
    David Sarasohn. Opposition to Bush: terrorist or racist?
    Sidney Blumenthal. For Bush, lies follow lies: For those who backed Bush, the argument over the Iraq war has moved beyond facts and on to pure fervor
    EJ Perkins. Could Abe Lincoln win the presidency today?
    Robert O. Boorstin. The Casualties of Certainty
    Paul Waldman. Laying Out the Bait: President Bush knows how to build a straw man - his critics shouldn't bite
    Joe Conason. I accuse: Joseph Wilson, author of "The Politics of Truth," talks about his prime suspect in the White House smear campaign against him and his wife
    NYT. The Nightmare at Abu Ghraib
    Tom Maertens. Our invasion made matters worse
    Sheryl McCarthy. Higher minimum wage urgently needed in NY
    Lawrence J. Korb. 11-Step Program for Iraq Failure

    Posted by Eric at 11:45 PM | Comments (1)

    New Kerry Ads

    These are the new ads, with 25m behind them.

    Posted by Eric at 04:28 PM | Comments (21)

    New Kerry Ads

    These are the new ads, with 25m behind them.

    Posted by Eric at 04:28 PM | Comments (0)

    Murkowski Moves Choice Position?

    From the DSCC:

    Since her father gave her a job as a U.S. Senator, Lisa Murkowski has tried to have it both ways on a woman's right to choose. In February of last year she said, "I think at this point in time, neither side claims me." [Anchorage Daily News 2/3/03] After Alaska Right to Life endorsed her opponent primary, former State Senate President Mike Miller, (who left Gov. Murkowski's cabinet to oppose Sen. Murkowski), Murkowski declared herself pro-life, touting her vote for the partial birth abortion ban, and her opposition to government funding of abortion. [Fairbanks News-Miner 4/29/04]. Previously, Murkowski supported a sense of the Senate resolution in support of Roe v. Wade. [Anchorage Daily News 4/29/04] Unlike Murkowski, Tony Knowles has always supported women's reproductive rights and continues to do so.
    The website of Tony Knowles

    Posted by Eric at 03:55 PM | Comments (13)

    Murkowski Moves Choice Position?

    From the DSCC:

    Since her father gave her a job as a U.S. Senator, Lisa Murkowski has tried to have it both ways on a woman's right to choose. In February of last year she said, "I think at this point in time, neither side claims me." [Anchorage Daily News 2/3/03] After Alaska Right to Life endorsed her opponent primary, former State Senate President Mike Miller, (who left Gov. Murkowski's cabinet to oppose Sen. Murkowski), Murkowski declared herself pro-life, touting her vote for the partial birth abortion ban, and her opposition to government funding of abortion. [Fairbanks News-Miner 4/29/04]. Previously, Murkowski supported a sense of the Senate resolution in support of Roe v. Wade. [Anchorage Daily News 4/29/04] Unlike Murkowski, Tony Knowles has always supported women's reproductive rights and continues to do so.
    The website of Tony Knowles

    Posted by Eric at 03:55 PM | Comments (2)

    Hamster Numbers: Halliburton Profits

    From the Center for American Progress:

    The prison camps in Guantanamo cost the military about $118 million a year to operate. A new facility, Camp 5, will open this week, expanding the prison's capacity to 1,100. Halliburton subsidiary KBR has been awarded $110 million worth of work "to build prison cells and other facilities." The expansion is curious in light of the fact that Paul Butler said the United States is interested in transferring at least half of the 600 remaining detainees to the custody of their home countries.

    Posted by Eric at 02:30 PM | Comments (47)

    Hamster Numbers: Halliburton Profits

    From the Center for American Progress:

    The prison camps in Guantanamo cost the military about $118 million a year to operate. A new facility, Camp 5, will open this week, expanding the prison's capacity to 1,100. Halliburton subsidiary KBR has been awarded $110 million worth of work "to build prison cells and other facilities." The expansion is curious in light of the fact that Paul Butler said the United States is interested in transferring at least half of the 600 remaining detainees to the custody of their home countries.

    Posted by Eric at 02:30 PM | Comments (2)

    Familiar Faces in VP Hunt

    According to Newsweek, several former Dems seeking the nomination are being considered for the VP slot:

    In the meantime, behind the scenes, Team Kerry has stepped up the pace of the search for a running mate. Jim Johnson, a longtime friend of Kerry's, is supervising the process, which has fully vetted two contenders so far, Rep. Dick Gephardt and Sen. John Edwards. A third is undergoing the process now, NEWSWEEK has learned. He is retired Gen. Wesley Clark—a further sign of Kerry's interest in the commander theme. And the tight-lipped Johnson, NEWSWEEK has learned, privately expressed considerable interest several weeks ago in Gov. Tom Vilsack of Iowa, who meets several veeply criteria: he's close to Kerry (having helped him win Iowa), he's Roman Catholic (which has become a major plus in national politics) and he's a geographical twofer, having been reared in western Pennsylvania, a key battleground. One insider predicts that Kerry will pick someone by the end of this month—extraordinarily early but perhaps an urgent necessity to fend off GOP attacks.

    Posted by Eric at 02:28 PM | Comments (22)

    Familiar Faces in VP Hunt

    According to Newsweek, several former Dems seeking the nomination are being considered for the VP slot:

    In the meantime, behind the scenes, Team Kerry has stepped up the pace of the search for a running mate. Jim Johnson, a longtime friend of Kerry's, is supervising the process, which has fully vetted two contenders so far, Rep. Dick Gephardt and Sen. John Edwards. A third is undergoing the process now, NEWSWEEK has learned. He is retired Gen. Wesley Clark—a further sign of Kerry's interest in the commander theme. And the tight-lipped Johnson, NEWSWEEK has learned, privately expressed considerable interest several weeks ago in Gov. Tom Vilsack of Iowa, who meets several veeply criteria: he's close to Kerry (having helped him win Iowa), he's Roman Catholic (which has become a major plus in national politics) and he's a geographical twofer, having been reared in western Pennsylvania, a key battleground. One insider predicts that Kerry will pick someone by the end of this month—extraordinarily early but perhaps an urgent necessity to fend off GOP attacks.

    Posted by Eric at 02:28 PM | Comments (5)

    Bush 100 Mistakes

    Center for American Progress: "100 Mistakes for the President to Choose From."

    Posted by Eric at 01:07 PM | Comments (2)

    Bush 100 Mistakes

    Center for American Progress: "100 Mistakes for the President to Choose From."

    Posted by Eric at 01:07 PM | Comments (1)

    Limbaugh: Women "Actually Wish" for Sexual Harassment

    Among many other interesting comments documented by David Brock's new website, Media Matters:

    1) Some of these babes, I'm telling you, like the sexual harassment crowd. They're out there protesting what they actually wish would happen to them sometimes. [4/26/04]

    2) Will it be the Democratic insiders' dream of Kerry and John Edwards? Or maybe the media's dream team of Kerry and John McCain. Or will it be the femi-Nazi dream team of Kerry and Hillary. [4/5/04]

    3) Some funny comments from the femi-Nazis at the pro-abortion rally in Washington yesterday. Not many. It didn't take long for us to put together our montage, but we'll let you hear it when we come back. [4/26/04]

    4) Oh, if you missed the "morning update" today, the femi-Nazis have really stepped into it. Karen Hughes just said some of the -- well, the most innocent, true, great stuff. And the femi-Nazis have assumed she was comparing them to the terrorists, which she wasn't. But now they've linked themselves with the terrorists. [4/29/04]

    5) [W]e got the femi-Nazi uprising over comments made by Karen Hughes. [4/29/04]

    See more of fun Rush.

    Posted by Eric at 05:49 AM | Comments (12)

    Limbaugh: Women "Actually Wish" for Sexual Harassment

    Among many other interesting comments documented by David Brock's new website, Media Matters:

    1) Some of these babes, I'm telling you, like the sexual harassment crowd. They're out there protesting what they actually wish would happen to them sometimes. [4/26/04]

    2) Will it be the Democratic insiders' dream of Kerry and John Edwards? Or maybe the media's dream team of Kerry and John McCain. Or will it be the femi-Nazi dream team of Kerry and Hillary. [4/5/04]

    3) Some funny comments from the femi-Nazis at the pro-abortion rally in Washington yesterday. Not many. It didn't take long for us to put together our montage, but we'll let you hear it when we come back. [4/26/04]

    4) Oh, if you missed the "morning update" today, the femi-Nazis have really stepped into it. Karen Hughes just said some of the -- well, the most innocent, true, great stuff. And the femi-Nazis have assumed she was comparing them to the terrorists, which she wasn't. But now they've linked themselves with the terrorists. [4/29/04]

    5) [W]e got the femi-Nazi uprising over comments made by Karen Hughes. [4/29/04]

    See more of fun Rush.

    Posted by Eric at 05:49 AM | Comments (3)

    David Brock's New Website

    David Brock has a new site up, MediaMatters.org, a great new site documenting the right-wing media:

    In the mid-1990s, as a conservative media insider, I saw firsthand (and participated in) the damage done to our democracy when conservative misinformation masquerades as journalism. In my book Blinded by the Right: The Conscience of an Ex-Conservative (2002), I revealed how this misinformation -- deliberately bought and paid for by covert political forces -- enveloped the media, poisoned public discourse, and nearly toppled a president.

    Today, the misinformation pumped out by the conservative media machine -- a multibillion-dollar network of talk radio shows, cable television, heavily subsidized newspapers and magazines, political pundits, partisan thinks tanks, and high-traffic Internet sites -- is even more pervasive, spreading like a virus into professional media venues. Rush Limbaugh analyzed election night results for NBC News. Ann Coulter marches through major TV studios with her allegations of "treason" against half the American populace. Rupert Murdoch's top-rated FOX News Channel exerts pressure up and down the TV dial to compromise standards. And it is an open secret that in newsrooms across the country, the right-wing Drudge Report website -- judged to be only 80 percent accurate by its proprietor -- is the home page for many editors, reporters, and TV and radio producers.

    The net effect of these corrosive trends has been to skew the media playing field to the right -- and, with it, the public debate. With progressives focusing on specific issues and public policy battles, conservatives have been working for decades, subtly amassing media power and influence. According to a new poll conducted by the Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group and commissioned by Media Matters for America, a plurality of the American electorate has concluded that conservatives have more power and influence in the media today than do liberals.

    The conservative media machine dominates our discourse, not because it is based in fact or logic but because it operates with almost total impunity. That ends today, as Media Matters for America puts in place, for the first time, the means to systematically monitor the media for conservative misinformation -- every day, in real time -- in 2004 and beyond.

    MediaMatters.org.

    Posted by Eric at 03:22 AM | Comments (30)

    David Brock's New Website

    David Brock has a new site up, MediaMatters.org, a great new site documenting the right-wing media:

    In the mid-1990s, as a conservative media insider, I saw firsthand (and participated in) the damage done to our democracy when conservative misinformation masquerades as journalism. In my book Blinded by the Right: The Conscience of an Ex-Conservative (2002), I revealed how this misinformation -- deliberately bought and paid for by covert political forces -- enveloped the media, poisoned public discourse, and nearly toppled a president.

    Today, the misinformation pumped out by the conservative media machine -- a multibillion-dollar network of talk radio shows, cable television, heavily subsidized newspapers and magazines, political pundits, partisan thinks tanks, and high-traffic Internet sites -- is even more pervasive, spreading like a virus into professional media venues. Rush Limbaugh analyzed election night results for NBC News. Ann Coulter marches through major TV studios with her allegations of "treason" against half the American populace. Rupert Murdoch's top-rated FOX News Channel exerts pressure up and down the TV dial to compromise standards. And it is an open secret that in newsrooms across the country, the right-wing Drudge Report website -- judged to be only 80 percent accurate by its proprietor -- is the home page for many editors, reporters, and TV and radio producers.

    The net effect of these corrosive trends has been to skew the media playing field to the right -- and, with it, the public debate. With progressives focusing on specific issues and public policy battles, conservatives have been working for decades, subtly amassing media power and influence. According to a new poll conducted by the Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group and commissioned by Media Matters for America, a plurality of the American electorate has concluded that conservatives have more power and influence in the media today than do liberals.

    The conservative media machine dominates our discourse, not because it is based in fact or logic but because it operates with almost total impunity. That ends today, as Media Matters for America puts in place, for the first time, the means to systematically monitor the media for conservative misinformation -- every day, in real time -- in 2004 and beyond.

    MediaMatters.org.

    Posted by Eric at 03:22 AM | Comments (8)

    Joseph Wilson on MTP

    Transcript here.

    Posted by Eric at 02:54 AM | Comments (36)

    Joseph Wilson on MTP

    Transcript here.

    Posted by Eric at 02:54 AM | Comments (2)

    Kerry to Buy $25m in Ads

    In May, to air all over the place. From the AP:

    The buy for ads running from Sunday through May 27 is the single-largest purchase of airtime yet this year by either presidential campaign. However, President Bush spent almost double that in multiple buys in March, his first month on the air.

    In all, Bush has poured more than $60 million into TV and radio ads since early March, compared to $17 million for Kerry during the same time period ...

    The Massachusetts senator has been airing moderate levels of ads on local broadcast channels in select media markets in 17 battleground states. But starting later this week, he will run new 60-second ads in all media markets in those states, plus in Louisiana and Colorado, according to Democratic sources familiar with the buy.

    The sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the two new ads - one that focuses on aspects of Kerry's life such as his Vietnam service and another that talks primarily about his top issues - also will run on national cable networks.

    Recent John Kerry ads .

    Posted by Eric at 01:11 AM | Comments (27)

    Kerry to Buy $25m in Ads

    In May, to air all over the place. From the AP:

    The buy for ads running from Sunday through May 27 is the single-largest purchase of airtime yet this year by either presidential campaign. However, President Bush spent almost double that in multiple buys in March, his first month on the air.

    In all, Bush has poured more than $60 million into TV and radio ads since early March, compared to $17 million for Kerry during the same time period ...

    The Massachusetts senator has been airing moderate levels of ads on local broadcast channels in select media markets in 17 battleground states. But starting later this week, he will run new 60-second ads in all media markets in those states, plus in Louisiana and Colorado, according to Democratic sources familiar with the buy.

    The sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the two new ads - one that focuses on aspects of Kerry's life such as his Vietnam service and another that talks primarily about his top issues - also will run on national cable networks.

    Recent John Kerry ads .

    Posted by Eric at 01:11 AM | Comments (3)

    Buffett to Join Kerry Camp

    However, he says his role will be limited. From Reuters:

    Buffett said Kerry had asked him three weeks ago if he would be part of an economic advisory council that includes Robert Rubin, who was Treasury Secretary in the Clinton administration. Buffett said he had accepted.

    Buffett, whose net worth is estimated by Forbes at $42.9 billion, said he was not likely to have much contact with Kerry and expected to play a limited role.

    He said that he believed the election would be more about Bush than about Kerry.

    "I personally think our election will be a referendum on George W. Bush," Buffett said. "The Kerry campaign is much less important than how people feel about Bush."

    Posted by Eric at 01:06 AM | Comments (124)

    Buffett to Join Kerry Camp

    However, he says his role will be limited. From Reuters:

    Buffett said Kerry had asked him three weeks ago if he would be part of an economic advisory council that includes Robert Rubin, who was Treasury Secretary in the Clinton administration. Buffett said he had accepted.

    Buffett, whose net worth is estimated by Forbes at $42.9 billion, said he was not likely to have much contact with Kerry and expected to play a limited role.

    He said that he believed the election would be more about Bush than about Kerry.

    "I personally think our election will be a referendum on George W. Bush," Buffett said. "The Kerry campaign is much less important than how people feel about Bush."

    Posted by Eric at 01:06 AM | Comments (4)

    Comedy Monday

    "GOP strategists hope the revelation of Kerry's wealth might debunk his status as a, quote, man of the people, and reveal him to be a bit of a fat cat. Unlike the President who — as we all know — before attending Andover and Yale, was a Cockney matchstick girl dying of tuberculosis." Jon Stewart

    "The issue of Kerry's military service has spawned a number of recent news-like events which have led to Republican charges the decorated war hero has something to hide. Because if there is one thing the Bush administration will not tolerate, it is other people's secrecy." Jon Stewart

    "(There's) controversy about Democratic nominee John Kerry throwing away his military medals and ribbons. Not to be outdone, today President Bush threw away his Alabama National Guard spotty attendance ribbon." David Letterman


    New Strongbad Email.

    Chappelle's Show. Prince and the Revolution take on Charlie Murphy in basketball.

    Crank Yankers. Chip reads the comics in a new episode of this crank calling series. Features Fred Armisen.

    The Onion. Tom Hanks This Week's Guest President.

    MadKane. Alpha Politics.

    Redefeat Bush. Tom Hanks This Week's Guest President.


    Brian's Mother: He's not the Messiah. He's a very naughty boy!

    Brian: I'm not the Messiah! Will you please listen? I am not the Messiah, do you understand? Honestly!
    Girl: Only the true Messiah denies His divinity.
    Brian: What? Well, what sort of chance does that give me? All right! I am the Messiah!
    Followers: He is! He is the Messiah!
    Brian: Now, fuck off!
    [silence]
    Arthur: How shall we fuck off, O Lord?

    Brian: You are all individuals!
    The Crowd: We are all individuals!
    Man in crowd: I'm not.

    Brian: What will they do to me?
    Ben the Prisoner: Oh you'll probably get away with crucifixion.
    Brian: CRUCIFIXION?
    Ben the Prisoner: Yeah, first offense.

    --Life of Brian


    Click down for comics

    Posted by Eric at 12:55 AM | Comments (6)

    Comedy Monday

    "GOP strategists hope the revelation of Kerry's wealth might debunk his status as a, quote, man of the people, and reveal him to be a bit of a fat cat. Unlike the President who — as we all know — before attending Andover and Yale, was a Cockney matchstick girl dying of tuberculosis." Jon Stewart

    "The issue of Kerry's military service has spawned a number of recent news-like events which have led to Republican charges the decorated war hero has something to hide. Because if there is one thing the Bush administration will not tolerate, it is other people's secrecy." Jon Stewart

    "(There's) controversy about Democratic nominee John Kerry throwing away his military medals and ribbons. Not to be outdone, today President Bush threw away his Alabama National Guard spotty attendance ribbon." David Letterman


    New Strongbad Email.

    Chappelle's Show. Prince and the Revolution take on Charlie Murphy in basketball.

    Crank Yankers. Chip reads the comics in a new episode of this crank calling series. Features Fred Armisen.

    The Onion. Tom Hanks This Week's Guest President.

    MadKane. Alpha Politics.

    Redefeat Bush. Tom Hanks This Week's Guest President.


    Brian's Mother: He's not the Messiah. He's a very naughty boy!

    Brian: I'm not the Messiah! Will you please listen? I am not the Messiah, do you understand? Honestly!
    Girl: Only the true Messiah denies His divinity.
    Brian: What? Well, what sort of chance does that give me? All right! I am the Messiah!
    Followers: He is! He is the Messiah!
    Brian: Now, fuck off!
    [silence]
    Arthur: How shall we fuck off, O Lord?

    Brian: You are all individuals!
    The Crowd: We are all individuals!
    Man in crowd: I'm not.

    Brian: What will they do to me?
    Ben the Prisoner: Oh you'll probably get away with crucifixion.
    Brian: CRUCIFIXION?
    Ben the Prisoner: Yeah, first offense.

    --Life of Brian


    Click down for comics

    Posted by Eric at 12:55 AM | Comments (1)

    May 02, 2004

    Sunday Stories, PM

    AP. U.S. Hostage Hamill Escapes in Iraq
    TIME. Contradicting Bill: President Bush says Clinton placed little emphasis on terrorism
    New Yorker. TORTURE AT ABU GHRAIB
    Reuters. Top U.S. Officer Can't Rule Out Pattern of Prison Abuse
    AP. Boy who became poster child for Gore's campaign dies
    AP. Franken says he's more likely than not to run for U.S. Senate in '08
    Reuters. Fed May Lay Groundwork for Rate Hike
    AP. Army Says Prison Abuse Is Not Widespread
    Reuters. Western Firm Pulls Staff from Yanbu, U.S. Cautions
    Reuters. Activists Urge Better Prostitutes' Rights Worldwide

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (5)

    Sunday Stories, PM

    AP. U.S. Hostage Hamill Escapes in Iraq
    TIME. Contradicting Bill: President Bush says Clinton placed little emphasis on terrorism
    New Yorker. TORTURE AT ABU GHRAIB
    Reuters. Top U.S. Officer Can't Rule Out Pattern of Prison Abuse
    AP. Boy who became poster child for Gore's campaign dies
    AP. Franken says he's more likely than not to run for U.S. Senate in '08
    Reuters. Fed May Lay Groundwork for Rate Hike
    AP. Army Says Prison Abuse Is Not Widespread
    Reuters. Western Firm Pulls Staff from Yanbu, U.S. Cautions
    Reuters. Activists Urge Better Prostitutes' Rights Worldwide

    Posted by Eric at 11:59 PM | Comments (1)

    Sunday Stories

    CNN. Repulsion, fury over prison photos
    News-Record. Edwards visible as he stumps for Kerry
    Seattle Times. Two sides of gay-marriage debate face off at Safeco Field rally
    Test. Justice Assaulted During Run; Souter Is Treated For Minor Injuries
    Telegraph. Six British soldiers held over Iraqi torture photos
    UK Indy. Why Antarctica will soon be the only place to live - literally
    WP. Kerry's Pick for No. 2 Remains Guarded: Candidate Is Expected to Select a Running Mate With Appeal to Centrist Voters
    WP. Senate Partisanship Worst in Memory: Key Legislation Languishes as Democrats and Republicans Jockey for Power
    WP. Prisoner Abuse Probe Widened; Military Intelligence at Center of Investigation
    WP. Guantanamo -- A Holding Cell In War on Terror
    NYT. Corzine Earning Political Stripes as the Money Man
    NYT. Kerry Struggling to Find a Theme, Democrats Fear
    Reuters. Four U.S. Soldiers Killed in Attacks in Iraq
    NYT. Officer Suggests Iraq Jail Abuse Was Encouraged
    LAT. Conflicting Observances of 'Mission Accomplished'
    AP. Kerry's message gets attention in Ohio
    Reuters. Kerry Urges 'Marching Again' for Veterans Benefits
    AP. Groups seek to protest during GOP convention
    BGlobe. In rebuttal to Cheney speech, Kerry links Bush to Iraq setbacks
    BGlobe. On anniversary, Bush defends carrier speech

    Commentary
    Mark Morford. 11 Hard Questions For Bush
    Steve Cobble. Missed Demeanor: Hypocrisy in the service of partisanship: Antonin Scalia in his own words
    Ben Hubbard. Degrees Of Separation: Young conservatives will be all alone at Reagan University
    Seattle PI. At this point, draft is unacceptable
    StarTrib. Shell game/Bush shortchanges training
    William H. Luers. International effort is the only way in Iraq
    Les Payne. Wolfowitz is numerically challeged
    Ronald Brownstein. Presidential Campaigns May Play Cameo Role
    Thomas Oliphant. The perilous Bush recovery
    Ellen Goodman. Demonizing the women's march
    Leonard Pitts. Casualty photos remind us of war's awful cost
    Cynthia Tucker. For Kerry, war dwarfs politics

    Posted by Eric at 11:41 PM | Comments (5)

    Sunday Stories

    CNN. Repulsion, fury over prison photos
    News-Record. Edwards visible as he stumps for Kerry
    Seattle Times. Two sides of gay-marriage debate face off at Safeco Field rally
    Test. Justice Assaulted During Run; Souter Is Treated For Minor Injuries
    Telegraph. Six British soldiers held over Iraqi torture photos
    UK Indy. Why Antarctica will soon be the only place to live - literally
    WP. Kerry's Pick for No. 2 Remains Guarded: Candidate Is Expected to Select a Running Mate With Appeal to Centrist Voters
    WP. Senate Partisanship Worst in Memory: Key Legislation Languishes as Democrats and Republicans Jockey for Power
    WP. Prisoner Abuse Probe Widened; Military Intelligence at Center of Investigation
    WP. Guantanamo -- A Holding Cell In War on Terror
    NYT. Corzine Earning Political Stripes as the Money Man
    NYT. Kerry Struggling to Find a Theme, Democrats Fear
    Reuters. Four U.S. Soldiers Killed in Attacks in Iraq
    NYT. Officer Suggests Iraq Jail Abuse Was Encouraged
    LAT. Conflicting Observances of 'Mission Accomplished'
    AP. Kerry's message gets attention in Ohio
    Reuters. Kerry Urges 'Marching Again' for Veterans Benefits
    AP. Groups seek to protest during GOP convention
    BGlobe. In rebuttal to Cheney speech, Kerry links Bush to Iraq setbacks
    BGlobe. On anniversary, Bush defends carrier speech

    Commentary
    Mark Morford. 11 Hard Questions For Bush
    Steve Cobble. Missed Demeanor: Hypocrisy in the service of partisanship: Antonin Scalia in his own words
    Ben Hubbard. Degrees Of Separation: Young conservatives will be all alone at Reagan University
    Seattle PI. At this point, draft is unacceptable
    StarTrib. Shell game/Bush shortchanges training
    William H. Luers. International effort is the only way in Iraq
    Les Payne. Wolfowitz is numerically challeged
    Ronald Brownstein. Presidential Campaigns May Play Cameo Role
    Thomas Oliphant. The perilous Bush recovery
    Ellen Goodman. Demonizing the women's march
    Leonard Pitts. Casualty photos remind us of war's awful cost
    Cynthia Tucker. For Kerry, war dwarfs politics

    Posted by Eric at 11:41 PM | Comments (0)

    Hamster Numbers: College Tuition

    From the Center for American Progress:

    The Congressional Advisory Committee on Student Financial Assistance (ACSFA) estimates that over the next decade more than 4 million college-qualified high school graduates will not attend a four-year college and 2 million of those graduates will attend no college at all due to financial barriers. Recent trends in college costs and the failure of student aid to keep pace create obstacles for poor and middle class families. Tuition and fees at colleges have risen by as much as 40 percent in some states, while the 2002-03 maximum Pell Grant or federal scholarship was worth $500 less than the maximum Pell Grant in 1975-76 when adjusted for inflation. Despite growing debt levels (an average of $17,000 per undergraduate), many students can not make ends meet. According to a report by ACSFA, after taking into account family contributions, student loans, grants and work, the average low-income student needs $3,800 more to meet college costs and the average middle-income student needs $2,250 more.

    Posted by Eric at 05:50 AM | Comments (23)

    Hamster Numbers: College Tuition

    From the Center for American Progress:

    The Congressional Advisory Committee on Student Financial Assistance (ACSFA) estimates that over the next decade more than 4 million college-qualified high school graduates will not attend a four-year college and 2 million of those graduates will attend no college at all due to financial barriers. Recent trends in college costs and the failure of student aid to keep pace create obstacles for poor and middle class families. Tuition and fees at colleges have risen by as much as 40 percent in some states, while the 2002-03 maximum Pell Grant or federal scholarship was worth $500 less than the maximum Pell Grant in 1975-76 when adjusted for inflation. Despite growing debt levels (an average of $17,000 per undergraduate), many students can not make ends meet. According to a report by ACSFA, after taking into account family contributions, student loans, grants and work, the average low-income student needs $3,800 more to meet college costs and the average middle-income student needs $2,250 more.

    Posted by Eric at 05:50 AM | Comments (5)

    Leno at the House Correspondent's Association Dinner

    Hesiod at Counterspin Central has the joke count.

    Posted by Eric at 05:48 AM | Comments (49)

    Leno at the House Correspondent's Association Dinner

    Hesiod at Counterspin Central has the joke count.

    Posted by Eric at 05:48 AM | Comments (4)

    Say Hi

    New Hamster supporters,

    Robbyn Tumey for Arkansas State Representative.

    Flogging the Simian, a new international weblog.

    Posted by Eric at 05:46 AM | Comments (12)

    Say Hi

    New Hamster supporters,

    Robbyn Tumey for Arkansas State Representative.

    Flogging the Simian, a new international weblog.

    Posted by Eric at 05:46 AM | Comments (3)

    May 01, 2004

    National Parks Hypocrisy

    From the LA Times.

    Posted by Eric at 03:50 PM | Comments (4)

    National Parks Hypocrisy

    From the LA Times.

    Posted by Eric at 03:50 PM | Comments (10)

    Cali Tackles E-Voting

    Diebold Election Systems is coming under fire by the state's top election official, reports the AP:

    The state’s top election official called for a criminal investigation of Diebold Election Systems Inc. as he banned use of the company’s newest model touchscreen voting machine, citing concerns about its security and reliability. Friday’s ban will force up to 2 million voters in four counties, including San Diego, to use paper ballots in November, marking their choices in ovals read by optical scanners.


    Secretary of State Kevin Shelley asked the attorney general’s office to investigate allegations of fraud, saying Diebold had lied to state officials. A spokesman for Attorney General Bill Lockyer said prosecutors would review Shelley’s claims ...

    A number of failures involving touchscreen machines in Georgia, Maryland and California have spurred serious questioning of the technology. As currently configured, the machines lack paper records, making recounts impossible.

    BlackBoxVoring.org is one of the leading watchdogs of voting fraud.

    Posted by Eric at 03:28 AM | Comments (13)

    Cali Tackles E-Voting

    Diebold Election Systems is coming under fire by the state's top election official, reports the AP:

    The state’s top election official called for a criminal investigation of Diebold Election Systems Inc. as he banned use of the company’s newest model touchscreen voting machine, citing concerns about its security and reliability. Friday’s ban will force up to 2 million voters in four counties, including San Diego, to use paper ballots in November, marking their choices in ovals read by optical scanners.


    Secretary of State Kevin Shelley asked the attorney general’s office to investigate allegations of fraud, saying Diebold had lied to state officials. A spokesman for Attorney General Bill Lockyer said prosecutors would review Shelley’s claims ...

    A number of failures involving touchscreen machines in Georgia, Maryland and California have spurred serious questioning of the technology. As currently configured, the machines lack paper records, making recounts impossible.

    BlackBoxVoring.org is one of the leading watchdogs of voting fraud.

    Posted by Eric at 03:28 AM | Comments (5)

    Asians Invading America

    Ooh, scary stuff, seducing us with their foreign ways and poor Cal-Berkeley singing. AP:

    Asians are projected to be the fastest-growing major population category over the next half-century, outpacing blacks, whites and Hispanics. Recent Census Bureau projections show the Asian population could grow by a third, to 14 million, by 2010 and more than triple to 33 million in 2050 ...

    Asians with a Chinese background are the largest single group, with 2.4 million. But the population of Indian-Americans grew the most during the 1990s - 106 percent to 1.7 million. Vietnamese were next at 83 percent and grew to 1.1 million in 2000.

    The technology boom of the 1990s lured many immigrants from India. Large numbers settled in California's Silicon Valley and other high-tech hotbeds like the Dulles Corridor outside Washington.

    A catch-all category of "other Asians" had 1.3 million people in 2000. This included groups like the Hmong, whose population nearly doubled to 169,000. The Hmong are an ethnic group from the highlands of Laos who fought the communists alongside the CIA during the Vietnam War.

    Pat Buchanan is spinning in his MSNBC chair.

    Posted by Eric at 02:14 AM | Comments (13)

    Asians Invading America

    Ooh, scary stuff, seducing us with their foreign ways and poor Cal-Berkeley singing. AP:

    Asians are projected to be the fastest-growing major population category over the next half-century, outpacing blacks, whites and Hispanics. Recent Census Bureau projections show the Asian population could grow by a third, to 14 million, by 2010 and more than triple to 33 million in 2050 ...

    Asians with a Chinese background are the largest single group, with 2.4 million. But the population of Indian-Americans grew the most during the 1990s - 106 percent to 1.7 million. Vietnamese were next at 83 percent and grew to 1.1 million in 2000.

    The technology boom of the 1990s lured many immigrants from India. Large numbers settled in California's Silicon Valley and other high-tech hotbeds like the Dulles Corridor outside Washington.

    A catch-all category of "other Asians" had 1.3 million people in 2000. This included groups like the Hmong, whose population nearly doubled to 169,000. The Hmong are an ethnic group from the highlands of Laos who fought the communists alongside the CIA during the Vietnam War.

    Pat Buchanan is spinning in his MSNBC chair.

    Posted by Eric at 02:14 AM | Comments (1)

    Bush a Boon for The Progressive Mag

    From Rob Zaleski in the Cap Times:

    When I last interviewed Rothschild, the magazine's editor, back in 1999 - on the eve of The Progressive's 90th birthday - the magazine's circulation had dropped 5,000 in just four years and was treading water at 27,000 subscribers.

    Since George W. took office, circulation has more than doubled - to 66,000 - and continues to multiply almost daily.

    Their subscription is $12 for 12 months, FYI.

    Posted by Eric at 01:26 AM | Comments (14)

    Bush a Boon for The Progressive Mag

    From Rob Zaleski in the Cap Times:

    When I last interviewed Rothschild, the magazine's editor, back in 1999 - on the eve of The Progressive's 90th birthday - the magazine's circulation had dropped 5,000 in just four years and was treading water at 27,000 subscribers.

    Since George W. took office, circulation has more than doubled - to 66,000 - and continues to multiply almost daily.

    Their subscription is $12 for 12 months, FYI.

    Posted by Eric at 01:26 AM | Comments (0)

    Conan on Sinclair

    Conan O'Brien just aired a short skit criticizing Sinclair Media for not airing the Nightline episode. The announcer, Joel Goddard, read the names of some of the shows Sinclair media stations DID broadcast, including smutty Maury Povich and Jerry Springer episodes.

    Posted by Eric at 01:07 AM | Comments (13)

    Conan on Sinclair

    Conan O'Brien just aired a short skit criticizing Sinclair Media for not airing the Nightline episode. The announcer, Joel Goddard, read the names of some of the shows Sinclair media stations DID broadcast, including smutty Maury Povich and Jerry Springer episodes.

    Posted by Eric at 01:07 AM | Comments (1)