{ An Autopsy of Democracy }

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Month without posting. Time for a recap . . .

My posts have become increasingly sparse of late (no time to keep up on things, it seems). So how about a brief summary/re-cap of some recent (depending on how you define the term) news . . .

Firstly (yeah, I know this is about a month old now, but I've been meaning to post it for some time), hear General Michael Hayden, deputy director of National Intelligence and former national director of the National Security Agency, display his complete and utter ignorance of the U.S. Constitution for all to see, at a press conference defending the illegal and unconstitutional warrantless domestic spying program. (Click here for the whole segment.)


According to Scooter Libby, he was authorized by his superiors (namely Dick Cheney, most sources say) to release classified information to the press in attempt to discredit Joe Wilson. Oh well. Who really cares? It's just lying the nation into a reckless war -- aren't we over that yet for christ's sake? I mean, come on, people. That's SOOOO 2003.

By the way, what the fuck ever happened to that investigation that was promised examining the misuse of intelligence? Hmm? Hmmmmm??? The 2004 election is over, you won, you fucking bastards (well, not really); now hold the fucking hearings. (Last I recall Harry Reid forced the Senate into "closed session" and then . . . nothing . . .)


"THE GUY SAW ME IN ALMOST A DOZEN SETTINGS, AND JOKED WITH ME ABOUT A BUNCH OF THINGS, INCLUDING DETAILS OF MY KIDS. PERHAPS HE HAS FORGOTTEN EVERYTHING. WHO KNOWS." -- Jack Abramoff, speaking of Bush. "I don't know him." -- Bush, speaking of Abramoff. Despite approximately 200 contacts in the first 8 months of Bush's presidency between Abramoff or his associates and Bush, and 12 known pictures of the two together, and a personal invitation to the Crawford Ranch, . . . Bush claims now he doesn't even know this fundraising "Pioneer."

Abramoff Associates Say He Bragged of Ties to Rove:

the Associated Press is reporting three former associates of indicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff say he frequently told them he had strong ties to the White House through senior Presidential advisor Karl Rove. On Monday, the White House said Rove considers Abramoff to be a “casual acquaintance.” New questions concerning Abramoff’s ties to the White House have arisen with the publication of an e-mail in which Abramoff said he had met with President Bush in “almost a dozen settings.” On Saturday, Time magazine published a photograph on its website of Abramoff attending a White House gathering hosted by President Bush in May 2001. The White House had previously said there was no record of Abramoff attending the event. They’ve also refused to release several other photos reportedly showing Abramoff with the President.

And, even in this day and age, it's still pretty easy to revise history.

Also see ThinkProgress


Remember those journalists from CBS (Dan Rather, Mary Mapes) who got fired for reporting on those "forged" documents dealing with Bush's military service (or lack thereof)? Well, if you get your news from the mainstream, I'm guessing you probably assume that they were indeed forged, even if we don't know by whom, correct? (That's what I had been led to believe, too . . .) Turns out, not the case. No one has ever been able to show that the documents were not authentic; and Mapes has debunked all that debunking (all the stuff about the typeface and letter spacing, etc.), and verified that the typeface in the documents can be found in countless other government and National Guard documents from that period. It's noteworthy that no one in the Bush administration ever called for an investigation into the authenticity of the documents -- probably because such an investigation would only prove that they were indeed authentic. Nor did anyone deny the substance of the story. Why? Well, because it's true. (Click here for part II of the recent DN! interview with Mapes. [.mp3, 2.6MB] She also discusses the Abu Ghraib scandal.)


Republicans are doing their utmost to block any serious investigation into the illegal and unconstitutional warrantless domestic spying scandal. Surprise, surprise. And good ol' Karl Rove is doing more of his legendary arm-twisting and threatening to "black list" any Republicans who vote against the president. (Why is he so concerned? Well, because "the defection of even a handful of Republican committee members could result in a determination that the president violated the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Such a determination could lead to impeachment proceedings.")


Katrina victims got kicked out of their federally-subsidized trailers. There's "Compassionate Conservatism" for you. And "Browny" has threatened to release all communications between himself and his superiors (including Bush) in order to prove that he is being scape-goated for the incompetent FEMA response. Also, turns out the Bush Crime Family (think I might start adopting Mike Malloy's term from now on . . .) lied about when they first knew the levies were breached. (What? Bush? Lying? He doesn't do that, that's just a Democratic talking point . . .)

See White House Knew of Levee's Failure on Night of Storm


The response by Muslims to some stupid cartoons makes it REALLY hard to sympathize with them, and reminds me once again why I fucking hate religion. However, despite all the coverage of this every bloody day (how many news stories on this did YOU hear before they actually told you what the cartoon actually portrayed?), unless you listen to DemocracyNow! you probably didn't know that this has nothing to do with Free Speech or Freedom of the Press. Why do I say that? Because apparently there were similar cartoons lampooning Jesus submitted for publication previously, and the editor of this Danish paper decided not to print them -- because it would just upset people. Hmm . . . So this fucker made a conscious, deliberate choice to publish cartoons portraying the Prophet Muhammed as a suicide bomber and NOT to publish the cartoons making fun of Jesus. In other words, "I don't care if we upset Muslims, cause I don't like them anyway." And while of course the leader of Iran is an antisemetic psychopath, I think his call for a cartoon competition about the Holocaust makes an excellent point about the double standard in place and the clear racism involved. For my part, I hereby invite you to participate in a Cartoons About Jesus contest; send me images and I will post them. Kari has already started us off; and also here.


Back on the topic of Cheney's reckless endangerment (or "hunting" accident), some have pointed out an interesting detail about the manner in which the VP goes "hunting"; that is, it's no so much "hunting" as "shooting fish in a barrel" -- or, slaughtering. The birds are raised in captivity (often deliberately crippled at birth so they can't fly well) and then released all at once in a confined area, at which time the massacre can commence.

[Mike Malloy has a thing or two to say about this . . .]


And the Bush administration spent $1.6 Billion on PR (a.k.a. propaganda) since 2003, according to the Government Accountability Office.


To conclude, I just want to say this: if you don't already, you need to watch or listen to DemocracyNow! every single day. One hour. That's it. You get more information -- important information -- in ONE HOUR than in an ENTIRE DAY of watching CNN, MSNBC, FOX, etc. etc.


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