Wednesday, March 31

Damned Encouraging

(FLORIDA) - Here in the reddest of the red states, I experienced two great signs for our side.

The first of course was Air America. Every time I came to West Palm Beach, Randi Rhodes was requisite listening on WJNO. She's now nationwide on AA, and she didn't skip a beat. She beat up guest Ralph Nader, launching the segment with Jimmy Carter's admonition to stick to coaching softball and stay out of the race. Randi then repeatedly had to tell him that we could not afford to have him run again when he repeatedly asked her why voters should be deprived of choice. My answer would have been that Nader is not a choice but an ego feeding frenzy, but Randi had a blast with it. And her plea for TV networks to show the video of Bush reading to second graders AFTER both planes hit the WTC was riveting ("I said to Wolf Blitzer, 'Why don't you TEEVEE guys show the VID-EE-OH of this - something I can't do on the RAY-DEE-OH!?'") Always has been a great show, now America can soak her in.

The other is that in Jeb Bush country, I'm VERY encouraged by the huge number of elder ladies proudly displaying a "BEAT BUSH" button on their shirts. I don't know who's doing this, but they're doing a magnificent job. I gave each and every one of them a thumbs-up - and one (who I knew) a big hug. Brave ladies in the land of NASCAR and pickups.

By the way, can we round up the boo-birds when Georgie throws out the first pitch next week? Leave your Air America thoughts here.

Tuesday, March 30

The "F" Word Was On CNN!

Gotta pound out a few things from the right coast on Mom's computer before we pack up and move it all out...

Hope y'all caught Newsnight on CNN tonight. The Condi-will-testify story was titled "WHITE HOUSE FLIP FLOP."

I can already hear Hannity gurgling and gasping on his show tomorrow denying it was just that. After he re-declares Democrats as being friends of al Qaeda of course. (He really did say that Monday.)

Monday, March 29

Out O'Commission For A Spell

When the child becomes the parent...

I'm traveling cross-country to fetch my mom so she can live out her many years to come under our watchful eye. I'll return Thursday. In the meantime, please do three things:

- If your folks are still walking the planet, tell them thanks and that you love 'em. If they're like my folks, they probably gave you your conscience which is working well for you.
- Visit the links we have listed on this page for the latest real news.
- Give a few bucks to the Kerry campaign. They take any amount, no matter how small. Click the button.

See you Thursday.

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If You're Thinking About Satellite Radio...

...stop thinking and get it.
XM Satellite Radio and Air America Radio Launch Exclusive Nationwide Progressive Talk Channel Starring Al Franken, Jeanene Garofalo and Chuck D.

XM Satellite Radio, the pioneer and leader in satellite radio, on Wednesday, March 31, debuts XM America Left, Channel 167, a new talk radio channel dedicated to progressive political viewpoints. Broadcasting coast-to-coast from its headquarters less than a mile from the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC, XM provides the highly-anticipated Air America Radio with its first national platform. XM's fast-growing nation of more than 3 million listeners now can tune in daily to Air America's talented and opinionated on-air personalities including popular satirist Al Franken, comedienne Jeanene Garofalo, hip hop icon Chuck D. and environmental activist Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

"We are excited to provide a national audience to progressive superstar Al Franken and his spirited cohorts at Air America. Challenging our listeners, and giving them the best and broadest choices possible is our daily mission at XM. Where else are you going to find Al Franken and Bill O'Reilly, or opera and punk for that matter, living under one roof," said Hugh Panero, XM President and CEO.
We've been hawking XM Radio here for a few months now. The 60s channel is a hoot. Frank's Place is like drinking a martini while you're driving. They have all the cable news channels, BBC, unsigned bands - and now Air America. Almost too much entertainment for the trip to 7-11...but still worth it.

Here She Is - Attack Dog #20! Let's Bring Her On...

Release the hound!

Laura Bush defends husband's actions before Sept. 11 attacks

ORLANDO, Fla. - Any suggestion that President Bush didn't take the threat of terrorism seriously before the Sept. 11 attacks is misguided, his wife, Laura Bush said Monday.

"If the implication was that my husband in some way does not take his role seriously, that's just absolutely wrong," Bush told reporters after addressing a National School Boards Association conference in Orlando.

Photo Corner

Richard Clarke (l) and Donald Rumsfeld each hold one example of tangible proof of their respective arguments.

He Can Find A Spark In The Ass Of A Corvair, But He Can't See The Handwriting On The Wall

Ralph, Ralph, Ralph, Ralph, Ralph. Come in, Ralph. Earth calling Ralph.

Nader draws support from some Bush fans

AUSTIN, Texas -- Independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader is getting a little help from his friends -- and from George W. Bush's friends.

Nearly 10 percent of the Nader contributors who have given him at least $250 have a history of supporting the Republican president, national GOP candidates or the party, according to computer-assisted review of financial records by The Dallas Morning News.

Among the new crop of Nader donors: actor and former Nixon speechwriter Ben Stein, Florida frozen-food magnate Jeno Paulucci and Pennsylvania oil company executive Terrence Jacobs. All have strong ties to the GOP.
Maybe this is why Nader is meeting with Kerry? And why should this revelation be such a big fat surprise to a normally intelligent man? And boy, don't I ask a lot of questions?

Fun With Drudge

Headline at the Fedora-Full O' Crap:

Kerry To Have Shoulder Surgery, But Denies 'Cheney' Problem...
Here's the juicy part of the story, about 2/3 of the way down:

Shortly after announcing Wednesday's surgery, a local TV reporter's first question to Kerry was whether the candidate had a "Cheney problem," a reference to health questions that have dogged the vice president as a result of his heart condition.

Kerry brushed off the inquiry with a simple "no," and declared "I'm healthy." Indeed, based on Kerry's partial medical records, which were released last year, the Massachusetts senator appears in fine and fit condition.
He's denying he has a heart condition here. Which means he MIGHT have a heart condition, but since he's denying it, there must be something to it, right? Otherwise, why would he go to such great lengths to deny it? And who leaked it to the press?

A life! My kingdom for a life!

From the Pen of: Jeff Danziger

Meanwhile, Over At 316 W. Styx River Ct. In Hades, Maryland 20666...

This is how they handle things in Chicago, Karl. Great stuff:

Demonstrators Swarm Around Rove's Home

Several hundred people stormed the small yard of President Bush's chief political strategist, Karl Rove, yesterday afternoon, pounding on his windows, shoving signs at others and challenging Rove to talk to them about a bill that deals with educational opportunities for immigrants.

Protesters poured out of one school bus after another, piercing an otherwise quiet, peaceful Sunday in Rove's Palisades neighborhood in Northwest, chanting, "Karl, Karl, come on out! See what the DREAM Act is all about!"

Rove obliged their first request and opened his door long enough to say, "Get off my property."

"Seems like he doesn't want to invite us in for tea," Emira Palacios quipped to the crowd.

Others chanted, "Karl Rove ain't got no soul."

The crowd then grew more aggressive, fanning around the three accessible sides of Rove's house, tracking him through the many windows, waving signs that read "Say Yes to DREAM" and pounding on the glass. At one point, Rove rushed to a window, pointed a finger and yelled something inaudible.

Shortly thereafter, sirens shot through the neighborhood and Secret Service agents and D.C. police joined the crowd on the lawn. Rove opened his door long enough to talk to an officer, and the crowd serenaded them with a stanza of "America the Beautiful."

The protest was organized by National People's Action, a coalition of neighborhood advocacy groups based in Chicago.

Because In Bush's World, An Unarmed Saddam Was More Of A Threat Than bin Laden

Hope y'all don't mind if we throw a little more gasoline onto the fire...but someone better explain this.

Shifts from bin Laden hunt evoke questions

In 2002, troops from the 5th Special Forces Group who specialize in the Middle East were pulled out of the hunt for Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan to prepare for their next assignment: Iraq. Their replacements were troops with expertise in Spanish cultures.

The CIA, meanwhile, was stretched badly in its capacity to collect, translate and analyze information coming from Afghanistan. When the White House raised a new priority, it took specialists away from the Afghanistan effort to ensure Iraq was covered.

Those were just two of the tradeoffs required because of what the Pentagon and CIA acknowledge is a shortage of key personnel to fight the war on terrorism. The question of how much those shifts prevented progress against al-Qaeda and other terrorists is putting the Bush administration on the defensive.
Looks like it's time to trot out the ol' 2000 Project for the New American Century report, "Rebuilding America's Defenses," co-authored by Paul Wolfowitz. Say it with me...

The current American peace will be short-lived if the United States becomes vulnerable to rogue powers with small, inexpensive arsenals of ballistic missiles and nuclear warheads or other weapons of mass destruction. We cannot allow North Korea, Iran, Iraq or similar states to undermine American leadership, intimidate American allies or threaten the American homeland itself. The blessings of the American peace, purchased at fearful cost and a century of effort, should not be so trivially squandered.
Well, you guys sure farted up THAT peace by torching the weakest of the three countries - AND THE WRONG BAD GUY. Thanks a pantload, Paul.

Sunday, March 28

One Last Thing To Do This Weekend

$10, $25, $50 - whatever you can kick in. We must win in November. Thanks.

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Memo To Time Magazine

Bush made one's religious beliefs an important political point. The rest of America knows that in this country, there's a separation of church and state. Stories like this are the very definition of a red herring.

Meet The Press Transcript Online

It's up at MSNBC. Highlights:


(Videotape, Friday):

SEN. BILL FRIST, (R-TN): Mr. Clarke has told two entirely different stories under oath; two entirely different stories under oath. In July 2002 in front of the congressional joint inquiry on the September the 11th attacks, Mr. Clarke testified under oath that the administration actively sought to address the threat posed by al-Qaeda during its first seven months in office. Madam President, it is one thing for Mr. Clarke to dissemble in front of the media, in front of the press, but if he lied under oath to the United States Congress, it's a far, far more serious matter.

As I mentioned, the Intelligence Committee is seeking to have Mr. Clarke's previous testimony declassified so as to permit an examination of Mr. Clarke's two differing accounts. Loyalty to any administration will be no defense if it is found that he has lied before Congress.

(End videotape)

MR. RUSSERT: Your reaction?

MR. CLARKE: Well, I think that this is part of a general pattern of the White House and the Republican National Committee and the president's re-election committee distributing talking points like that to senators and to press and to media trying to make me the issue and trying to engage in character assassination. I'm not the issue. Now, we can talk about the specifics of their allegations.

MR. RUSSERT: Is there any inconsistency between your sworn testimony before the September 11 Commission last week and two years ago before the congressional committee?

MR. CLARKE: No, there isn't. And I would welcome it being declassified, but not just a little line here or there. Let's declassify all six hours of my testimony.

MR. RUSSERT: You would request this morning that it all be declassified?

MR. CLARKE: And I want more declassified. I want Dr. Rice's testimony before the 9-11 Commission declassified, and I want the thing that the 9-11 Commission talked about in its staff report this week declassified, because there's been an issue about whether or not a strategy or a plan or something useful was given to Dr. Rice in early January. And she says it wasn't. So we now have the staff report of the 9-11 Commission, and it says, "On January 25th, Clarke forwarded his December strategy paper to the new national security adviser, and it proposed covert action to the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan, significantly increasing CIA funding, retaliating for the USS Cole, arming the Predator aircraft, going after terrorist fund raising."

Now, Dr. Rice has characterized this as not a plan, not a strategy, not a series of decisions which could be made right away, but warmed-over Clinton material. Let's declassify that memo I sent on January 25th and let's declassify the national security directive that Dr. Rice's committee approved nine months later on September 4th, and let's see if there's any difference between those two, because there isn't. And what we'll see when we declassify what they were given on January 25th and what they finally agreed to on September 4th, is that they're basically the same thing and they wasted months when we could have had some action.

MR. RUSSERT: But to be clear, Mr. Clarke, you would urge Congress, the intelligence committees, to declassify your sworn testimony before the congressional inquiry two years ago as well as your testimony before the September 11th Commission?

MR. CLARKE: Yes, and those documents I just referred to and Dr. Rice's testimony before the 9-11 Commission because the victims' families have no idea what Dr. Rice has said. There weren't in those closed hearings where she testified before the 9-11 Commission. They want to know. So let's take her testimony before the 9-11 Commission and make it part of the package of what gets declassified along with the national security decision directive of September 4 and along with my memo of January 25.

In fact, Tim, let's go further. The White House is selectively now finding my e-mails, which I would have assumed were covered by some privacy regulations, and selectively leaking them to the press. Let's take all of my e-mails and all of the memos that I've sent to the national security adviser and her deputy from January 20 to September 11 and let's declassify all of it.

MR. RUSSERT: As well as her responses?

MR. CLARKE: As well as her responses.

MR. RUSSERT: Now, when you resigned, you sent a very polite letter to the president: "It's been an enormous privilege to serve you these past 24 months. I will always remember the courage, determination, calm leadership you demonstrated on September 11. I thank you again for the opportunity to serve you. You have provided me"--was that just being polite?


MR. RUSSERT: Or are you now just being disloyal?

MR. CLARKE: No. Well, my mother taught me to be polite. Let me read another line from the letter, which I have. I don't know what you have over there. But this is the actual letter. "I will always have fond memories of our briefings for you on cybersecurity." Not on terrorism, Tim, because they didn't allow me to brief him on terrorism. You know, they're saying now that when I was afforded the opportunity to talk to him about cybersecurity, it was my choice. I could have talked about terrorism or cybersecurity. That's not true. I asked in January to brief him, the president, on terrorism, to give him the same briefing I had given Vice President Cheney, Colin Powell and Condi Rice. And I was told, "You can't do that briefing, Dick, until after the policy development process."

MR. RUSSERT: Who told you that?

MR. CLARKE: Condi Rice. And I said, "Well, can I brief him on cybersecurity?" "Oh, yes, you can brief him on that." Now, you read my letter to him. Let's read his letter back to me. Maybe you'd like to read it, if you can read this.

MR. RUSSERT: Go ahead, please.

MR. CLARKE: This is his writing. This is the president of the United States' writing. And when they're engaged in character assassination of me, let's just remember that on January 31, 2003: "Dear Dick, you will be missed. You served our nation with distinction and honor. You have left a positive mark on our government." This is not the normal typewritten letter that everybody gets. This is the president's handwriting. He thinks I served with distinction and honor. The rest of his staff is out there trying to destroy my professional life, trying to destroy my reputation, because I had the temerity to suggest that a policy issue should be discussed. What is the role of the war on terror vis-a-vis the war in Iraq? Did the war in Iraq really hurt the war on terror? Because I suggest we should have a debate on that, I am now being the victim of a taxpayer-paid--because all these people work for the government-- character assassination campaign.

(Videotape, March 26, 2004):

SEN. FRIST: Assuming the controversy around this series of events does, in fact, drive the sales of his book, Mr. Clarke will make a lot of money, a lot of money for exactly what he has done. I personally find this to be an appalling act of profiteering, of trading on insider access to highly classified information and capitalizing upon the tragedy that befell this nation on September the 11th, 2001. Mr. Clarke must renounce, I think, any plan to personally profit from this book.

(End videotape)

MR. RUSSERT: The book is dedicated to those who were murdered on September 11 and you apologize to the families. Would you consider giving the royalties or profits from the book to the children of those families who were murdered?

MR. CLARKE: Tim, long before Senator Frist said what he said, I planned to make a substantial contribution, not only to them but also to the widows and orphans of our Special Forces who have fought and died in Afghanistan and Iraq. And when we see the results of the book sales, we'll know how much we have to make donations. I also have to consider the fact that friends of mine in the White House, because I still have friends in the White House, having worked there for 11 years, are telling me that the word is out in the White House to destroy me professionally. One line that somebody overheard was "he's not going to make another dime again in Washington in his life." So I have to take that into account, too, this sort of vicious personal attack is also directed at my bank account. But this is not about me making money. It's about getting the truth out. And long before Senator Frist said what he said, I planned to make substantial donations, and I will make substantial donations.

MR. CLARKE: Well, I think it's obvious, but there are three major reasons. Who are we fighting in the war on terrorism? We're fighting Islamic radicals and they are drawing people from the youth of the Islamic world into hating us. Now, after September 11, people in the Islamic world said, "Wait a minute. Maybe we've gone too far here. Maybe this Islamic movement, this radical movement, has to be suppressed," and we had a moment, we had a window of opportunity, where we could change the ideology in the Islamic world. Instead, we've inflamed the ideology. We've played right into the hands of al-Qaeda and others. We've done what Osama bin Laden said we would do.

Ninety percent of the Islamic people in Morocco, Jordan, Turkey, Egypt, allied countries to the United States--90 percent in polls taken last month hate the United States. It's very hard when that's the game where 90 percent of the Arab people hate us. It's very hard for us to win the battle of ideas. We can arrest them. We can kill them. But as Don Rumsfeld said in the memo that leaked from the Pentagon, I'm afraid that they're generating more ideological radicals against us than we are arresting them and killing them. They're producing more faster than we are.


MR. RUSSERT: But Saddam is gone and that's a good thing?

MR. CLARKE: Saddam is gone is a good thing. If Fidel were gone, it would be a good thing. If Kim Il Sung were gone, it would be a good thing. And let's just make clear, our military performed admirably and they are heroes, but what price are we paying for this war on Iraq?

MR. RUSSERT: In 2004 you'll vote for John Kerry?

MR. CLARKE: I'm not going to endorse John Kerry. That's what the White House wants me to do. And they want to say I'm part of the Kerry campaign. I've already pledged I'm not part of the Kerry campaign and I will not serve in the Kerry administration.

MR. RUSSERT: Will you vote for him?

MR. CLARKE: That's my business.

MR. RUSSERT: Will you seek elective office?

MR. CLARKE: Never.


MR. CLARKE: I've done 30 years in the government as a senior executive. I don't want to do it any...

MR. RUSSERT: Would you like to come back in government in another capacity?

MR. CLARKE: Never. Not a day.


MR. CLARKE: Not a day.

MR. RUSSERT: It's over?

MR. CLARKE: Thirty years is enough.

A Little Something Richard Clarke Is Teaching The Bush Thugs

The White House is finally facing an adversary who has the one thing - the ONE thing - that they had always laid claim to.

The moral high ground.

Geroge, Dick, Condi, Scott and the rest of you? Your false moral bravado is being dismantled by someone who has a real - not manufactured - moral calling in his life. Sure, he stands to sell some books. But those books chronicle the frustration of a man who was literally ignored since the Bush administration wrested control of the government, with disasterous results.

The White House inhabitants on the other hand, are all about power, ego and oil, oil, oil. Everything they've done for the last three years has been toward those goals. The monetary take for books is ridiculously miniscule by comparison. And their version of morality has resulted in death and opportunism.

They've been thrown for a loop by a genuine domestic moralist who is standing firm and not caving in - something they've never dealt with before. You can see it. It's driving them crazy.

Footnote: Due to my Saturday night schedule of bachanalia, I woke up in time to see the last 15 minutes of Meet The Press here in LA. I did see how Clarke revealed he did in fact vote for Gore in 2000, and I placed a correction in the "Miracle" essay. I also saw Russert ask him for the millionth time, "We caught Saddam. Isn't that a good thing?" which is the very definition of apples and oranges. Clarke's answer was superb, rattling off everyone who, if caught, would be a good thing, but they had nothing to do with 9/11. I heard he also produced a hand-written glowing praise by Bush which effectively destroyed their character assassination on him. I'm TiVoing the 7pm CNBC replay and I'll add anything that the blogosphere will shout from our rooftops when I see the whole thing.

Saturday, March 27

August 4, 2002

The date of this Time Magazine article - which tells Clarke's story essentially as Clarke is telling it. The White House crackheads want to keep it going? We'll keep it going.

Checkmate, Bill and Denny!

Blah3 found this: Richard Clarke also is urging the declassifying of his testimony which Bill Frist and Dennis Hastert are seeking.

In fact, Clarke did them one better - he wants ALL his testimony declassified. On today's All Things Considered on NPR, he didn't mince words. If you listen to the audio clip (which is less than four minutes), go in 1:23 and you'll hear that gauntlet ricocheting off Frist's and Hastert's heads.

"I'd love to have not only my testimony, but all the materials and documents related to this investigation declassified."
"...if we're going to start declassifying materials, let's not do it selectively. Let's declassify my entire testimony - all 196 pages of it, or whatever it is. And let's also declassify those two key documents - materials I submitted as a strategy or a plan or decision materials, whatever you want to call it in January, and what was finally approved in September. And you'll see that there is no difference between the two - that all of that time went by, and no additional options were created. We could have had that decision very early on. We wasted all those months."
And knowing that with the attack pack, the best offense is a good defense, he adds:

"There's definitely a price to be paid for stimulating this public debate - and I'm sure I haven't even begun to pay the price that the White House will make me pay."
Wow. Almost makes me think, "If you see me floating face down in the Potomac..."

As long as we're on to their ad hominem attacks which they can freely dispense without being under oath as Clarke was, we can choose who we wish to believe, thanks.

Keep fighting the good fight, Mr. C. And yes - the effect is starting to take hold.

Oh, speaking of ad hominem attacks, the always-predictable Mark Steyn reviews the book with a litany of name-calling and charges against Clarke. As you read the review, you begin to realize that Steyn (surprise!) didn't read a single page of it - he only quotes one passage which he even says was widely quoted in the media.

Turn on the light. They run back under the fridge.

KC ALERT: Rally Against The Rally Against John Kerry Tomorrow Morning!

Come on down and disrupt this disruption! From the wacky campaign of GOPer Adam Taff:

ALERT: Rally for President Bush tomorrow morning!

Attention TAFFers, we have some late-breaking news from the Bush-Cheney campaign. Join us tomorrow for a Flip-Flop Rally at the Kansas City Downtown Airport. Let's demonstrate our support for President George W. Bush and give John Kerry a memorable welcome!

WHAT: Flip-Flop rally welcoming John Kerry to Kansas City!
WHEN: Saturday, March 27th, 2004, 9:45am
WHERE: KC Downtown Airport, 300 NW Richards Rd, Kansas City, Missouri 64116
Hey, Let's demonstrate our support for some freakin' peace and quiet and give the TAFFers a memorable welcome!

Bush Administration: Weak On Defense

They can't even defend themselves.
How can they possibly defend our country?

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Call His Bluff, Mr. Clarke

Those present at the July 2002 hearings say Richard Clarke is pretty much on target (link fixed) in his current assessments of that closed-door meeting. But Majority Leader Bill Frist wants it declassified so the GOP can parade any discrepancies before the public and discredit Clarke.

Clarke should have three words for Bill Frist: Go for it.

We're going to need a vacation after November from picking up all these thrown-down gauntlets and shoving them back in their failing faces.

Friday, March 26


It's amazing, actually.

John Kerry doesn't even begin to campaign. He takes a week off to hit the slopes in Idaho - his only dalliance with the press was his calling a secret service agent a "son of a bitch" for cutting him off in mid-snowboard. Who wouldn't? But by and large, Kerry was a non-story in his self-imposed exile from the rigors of the primary season.

The Bush-Cheney army took advantage of the situation to start whipping out the fairy tales on Kerry; the $900 billion tax hike, the flips and flops, the out-of-context sound bites. It seemed as though the Bush party was going to set the tone and dominate the conversation. Kerry would return from his vacation having to answer all the charges leveled against his service, his voting record and his character by the Bush campaign. Many observers - this blog included - worried that Kerry was on the ropes and was being put in the worst possible place for a presidential candidate to be.

On the defensive.

Then - the miracle.

Team Bush suddenly found themselves ambushed in the wide open spaces of public scrutiny. There was no aircraft carrier to strut on. There was no turkey to hide behind. The top levels of the Bush administration were head-spinningly forced into that abyss known as covering your ass. Controlling an out-of-control spin. The "D' word.

It wasn't prompted by Kerry.

It wasn't revealed by Democratic operatives.

It wasn't the dirty work of the 527s or the evil ramblings of the liberal media.

It was the latest in a series of patriotic public servants who spent the better part of their lives serving their country and the last few years serving their president. It was Richard A. Clarke, President Bush's head of counterterrorism until 2003.

The attack dogs were suddenly stopped dead in their tracks, blindsided by someone they thought they knew. They thought he was one of their own, which meant he took that implied oath of loyalty to the boy king and his minions - that any betrayal would surely be met with the bile and hostility of those protecting the secretive subculture known as the Bush Cartel, among other names.

He knew he would face the wrath of the Republican party, the minority known as the Bush voters. He would be subject to ridicule and his nasty personal habits would be displayed before the cameras in an endless media parade.

But this was no ordinary enemy of the White House. In fact, until the book was profiled on 60 Minutes, Richard A. Clarke was known to be a Republican. He voted for Bush over Al Gore in 2000. He could have voted to continue the glorious Clinton dynasty which the White House associates him with, but instead bought into the compassionate conservatism of Bush II.

So the Clinton loyalist meme didn't stick.

CORRECTION: This last point was culled from published reports. Clarke disclosed on the 3/28 edition of Meet The Press that he voted for Gore in 2000.

He was, by Cheney's admission, kept out of the loop in counterterrorism meetings between January 20 and September 4, 2001. But at the same time, he was in on ALL the counterterrorism meetings during that time, according to Condoleezza Rice.

So the "out of the loop" idea never held water.

His opening statement at the 9/11 Commission public hearing begged the forgiveness of the 9/11 families for their government's failure in doing all that could have been done to prevent their loved ones' horrific demise.

So the heartless traitor to America label didn't stand a chance.

They rounded up the troops to find the character flaws. What was he like? Did he have a temper? Well, he IS strong-willed, so he MUST be hot-headed. And he's definitely grinding SOME axe in his book. The balloon was floated, but quickly flew out of sight.

So the angry-man theory never sprouted feet.

Moreover, much to the chagrin of the entire Bush attack machine, they never, EVER saw any of this coming.

So their ability to launch an effective pre-emptive strike suffered a fatal blow.

The quiet dignity of this one man - who went before the American public with a heart heavy with pain over not only an attack upon our land, but his superiors' efforts to link that horror to another endeavor in Iraq which took over 600 more American souls - has caught the attention of many Americans who had until now accepted Bush and company as our shield against terror.

Suddenly, the soft underbelly was exposed. The warriors are really sheep. The saviors of democracy drained the good will of the world to fulfill our darkest enemy's prediction - that America would take over an oil-rich Arab nation in the name of terror fighting. And the leaders of the free world had been revealed as the scared cockraoches they are when the glaring light of truth shines in their faces.

And disgraceful hate-filled vindictives such as this are only making Americans more incensed at the viciousness and insensitivity of the supporters of the so-called leaders of our nation.

Never has such a self-proclaimed administration of stone become so obsessed over the words of one man that they practically ceased running the country to embark on a campaign to assassinate his character and question his loyalty. The White House dispatched an assault by the highest levels of their cabinet with more ferocity and fervor than against every taped threat by bin Laden and al-Zawahiri combined.

Because this time, it wasn't America that was threatened. It was their egos.

We now know their achilles heel. We now know their vulnerablility. It's not the challenging of their policies. It's not the challenging of their record. It's not even the challenging of their motives.

Richard Clarke put forth a devastating argument which finally made America ask, "Why are these people running our country?"

Their achilles heel is the challenging of the image they've created for themselves. It's all they have. And Richard Clarke torpedoed a crater into it this week.

It's now Kerry's race to lose. Bring it on, John. Your moment has arrived.

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"I Was There Last Night. I Didn‘t Think It Was Funny"

Chris smacks down Tucker Eskew, Bush-Cheney Campaign Advisor. Hardball, 3/25/04:

MATTHEWS: There‘s a riff of four or five jokes where he made fun of the fact he couldn‘t find weapons of mass destruction.

Now, the reason I raise this is, we were just over at Walter Reed. There is like almost more than 3,000 seriously injured guys, amputees, the people that fought that war thinking they were protecting this country from weapons of mass destruction. They weren‘t because the guy didn‘t have any weapons of mass destruction.


ESKEW: They did.

MATTHEWS: They did what? They protected us from weapons of mass destruction?

ESKEW: They protected us from Saddam Hussein.

MATTHEWS: But not weapons of mass destruction, which was the case made to them and their families.

ESKEW: It was a case made.


ESKEW: It was a case.

MATTHEWS: What was the other case made before the war?

ESKEW: Oh, come on, Chris.

MATTHEWS: Before the war.

ESKEW: Before the war.

MATTHEWS: When we went to U.N., the case was they, had weapons of mass destruction.

ESKEW: That was a central part of the case. It was at the forefront of the case.

MATTHEWS: Well, it‘s not true.

ESKEW: And it remains at the forefront of the case.

MATTHEWS: It does? How?

ESKEW: Of course it does.

MATTHEWS: How does it still become an issue for the war?

ESKEW: Because I think the president has made clear that we disarmed a dictator, an evil man who had the capacity

MATTHEWS: Without the weapons, he was just evil. But he wasn‘t a threat to us, was he?

ESKEW: He was the same sort of threat to George W. Bush that John Kerry acknowledged that he was over and over and over again.

MATTHEWS: You‘re shifting here.

ESKEW: No, I‘m not. I think the case is that the American—bipartisan—on a bipartisan basis, the American leadership in this country understood the man.

MATTHEWS: Nice try.


MATTHEWS: So you hold to the argument as a spokesman for the president that the president of the United States was right last night to make fun of the issue of why he went to war?

ESKEW: Listen, you can put it in that context, Chris.

MATTHEWS: Four jokes.

ESKEW: The president—come on. The president has talked about WMD over and over and over again, since David Kay reported and before.

MATTHEWS: Would you have him tell those jokes as he tours the hospitals?

ESKEW: He tours the hospitals an awful lot. He doesn‘t need a lesson in compassion toward the American soldiers, Chris.

MATTHEWS: No, it‘s just he has a—maybe there‘s a question here of taste.

ESKEW: I think the president has very good taste.

MATTHEWS: You felt the jokes were right?

ESKEW: That‘s self-deprecation, Chris. I think you misinterpret it.

MATTHEWS: So you think the guys who got hurt and killed in this war thought it was funny?

ESKEW: I wouldn‘t say that and I don‘t think you really mean that.

MATTHEWS: I just don‘t think it was funny. I was there last night. I didn‘t think it was funny.

Thursday, March 25

The GOP Strategy: Embracing Stupidity And Junk

Sayeth the Aberdeen (SD) News:

Republicans have accused Democratic U.S. House candidate Stephanie Herseth of maintaining a secret Web page to receive campaign donations raised from ads on liberal groups' Internet sites.

Herseth faces Republican Larry Diedrich in a June 1 special election to fill the vacancy left when Bill Janklow resigned as South Dakota's lone member of the U.S. House.

Jason Glodt, executive director of the South Dakota Republican Party, said the Herseth campaign arranged the special Internet donation site to prevent most South Dakotans from knowing about Herseth's relationship with such liberal groups.

"There's a reason she's got that secret site. She doesn't want to advertise the fact she's doing this," Glodt said Thursday.
Yup. They're on to us. Our little subculture. Because as we all know, if there's one time-tested tried and true way of raising as much money on a grand grassroots scale as you possibly can imagine, it's via...a...secret,

Herseth bought ads on several blogs like Atrios, Daily Kos and most importantly - not Hoffmania! - to reach her how do we say...core consitituency? It's called focused marketing.

But if the Republicans, in their infinite jurassic ignorance, want to call it "maintaining a secret site," well, we'll just have to be left to wonder how secrecy raises cash. Let me know how it's done.

Thank You, Readers

Almost $3000 raised so far.

Click the button. Feel better.
Click to contribute!
Contribute. Vote. Win.


Every once in a while, something just kinda flops into your lap which makes you say the above expletive.

That was my reaction to this post at the Moderate Independent which I found nurgling around Google News. It points out the one thing - the one single wide-reaching gambit - which Kerry has in his arsenal that Bush is absolutely - no way, no how, uh-uh - NOT capable of doing. It's painfully simple, but Bush has dug himself so deep, entrenched himself so far into the abyss called Iraq, that there is simply no possible way he can DREAM of using this as an ace up his sleeve. It's Kerry's Royal Flush. It's devastatingly obvious, yet as the article says, still under the radar.

As I said...DAAAMMMN. Read it and sleep well tonight, knowing that this is what we have going for us.

Cross-post and more comments at Daily Kos

Still Active After All These Years

If you thought Rolling Stone has essentially become an apolitical outpost for Britney Spears pictures - not that I have a problem with that - prepare to be pleasantly surprised. They're slowly and not-so-quietly turning back into the political animal they once were.

Bush really is unifying us. Go. Read.

Memo From The Home Office In San Antonio

From: Clear Channel Broadcasting; The FCC
To: Everyone in America
Re: Unacceptable Words and Phrases

Please refrain from using the following words, either on the air or in normal conversation.

To be affy. To be blotty. To be mustard. To be on blob. To be constitutionally inclined to gallantry. To be dripping for it. To feel fuzzy. To feel hairy. To be het up. To be hot and bothered. To be hot assed. To be hot blooded. To be hot in the biscuit. To be hunky. To be in season. To be in the mood. To have itchy pants. To be juicy. To be mashed. To be on for one's greens. To have peas in the pot. To be primed. To be proud. To be randy. To be ranting. To be rooty. To be rusty. To be touchable. To be turned on. To be wet. The apple dumpling shop. Babaloos. Baby pillows. Balloons. Bazongas. Bazooms. Bee bites. Begonias. Big brown eyes. Bodacious tatas. Boobies. Boobs. Boulders. Bouncers. Bra busters. Bubbies. Bulbs. Bumpers. Butter bags. Charlies. Charms. Chestnuts. Cream jugs. Cupcakes. Dairies. Dinner. Droopies. Eyes. Feeding bottles. Fried eggs. Garbanzos. Gazongas. Globes. Grapefruits. Grapes. Handwarmers. Headlights. Honeydew melons. Hooters. Jelly on springs. Jugs. Kajoobies. Kettledrums. Knockers. Lemons. Love bubbles. Lungs. Lung warts. Maracas. Marshmallows. Melons. Milk bottles. The Milky Way. Mosquito bites. Mountains. Muffins. Murphies. Oranges. Pantry shelves. Peaches. The playground. Superdroopers. Swingers. Teacups. Tonsils. Torpedoes. The treasure chest. Tremblers. Twin lovelinesss. The twins. The udders. The upper deck. The upper works. Warts. Watermelons. Ass opener. Baby maker. Bald-headed hermit. Baloney pony. Banana. Battering ram. Bean tosser. Beef bayonet. Best leg of three. Bishop. Blow torch. Bone. Boy. Broom handle. Bug fucker. Bum tickler. Burrito. Bush beater. Bushwhacker. Candle. Carrot. Cherry picker. Club. Coral branch. Crack hunter. Creamstick. Crimson Chitterling. Crotch cobra. Cucumber. Dangling participle. Dart of love. Ding dong. Dingus. Dipstick. Divining rod. Dong. Donkey. Dork. Dragon. Dribbling dart of love. Drumstick. Eel. Eye opener. Foaming beef probe. Fool sticker. Frankfurter. Gardener. Giggle stick. Girl-o-meter. Gooser. Goose's neck. Gravy maker. Grinding tool. Gun. Hair splitter. Hammer. Hanging Johnny. Holy poker. Honeypot cleaver. Horn. Hose. Irish root. Jack-in-the-box. Jiggling bone. Joy stick. Kidney scraper. Kosher pickle. A ladies' delight. Lance of love. Licorice stick. Life preserver. Live sausage. Lizard. Lobster. Love dart. Love muscle. Love pump. Love sausage. Lung disturber. Magic wand. Master of ceremonies. Matrimonial peacemaker. Maypole. Meat whistle. Middle leg. Milkman. Mr Happy. Muscle of love. Mutton dagger. Nag. Needle. Nine inch knocker. Old slimy. Our one-eyed brother. One-eyed milkman. One-eyed monster. One-eyed pants mouse. One-eyed trouser snake. One-eyed wonder. One-eyed worm. One-eyed zipper snake. Peacemaker. Pee-Wee. Pen. Pencil. Piccolo. Pile driver. Pilgrim's staff. Pink oboe. Pioneer of nature. Pipe. Pisser. Pistol. Plug. Plunger. Pointer. Poker. Pole. Pork sword. Prong. Pump handle. Quim wedge. Ram. Rammer. Ramrod. Raw meat. Reamer. Red hot poker. Rod of love. Rolling pin. Rooster. Root. Roto-rooter. Rumpleforeskin. Rump splitter. Saint Peter. Sceptre. Schlong. Schvontz. Schween. Screwdriver. Serpent. Shaft of cupid. Short arm. Silent flute. Skin flute. Small arm. Snake. Spigot. Split-ass mechanic. Staff. Stallion. Star gazer. Stick. Stretcher. Stump. Sugar stick. Sweet meat. Swizzle stick. Sword. Tail pipe. Tally whacker. Tent peg. Thingamabob. Third leg. Thumb of love. Ticker. Tool. Torch of cupid. Toy. Trigger. Tube. Tube steak. Tummy banana. Uncle Dick. Wand. Wang. Water spout. Wazoo. Weapon. Wedge. Weenie. Whacker. Whang. Whang bone. Whanger. Whip. Whistle. Whore pipe. Worm. Wriggling pole. Yum-yum. Zubrick. Allsbay. Apples. Bangers. Baubles. Beecham's pills. Berries. Bird's eggs. Booboos. Bullets. Bum balls. Buttons. Cannon balls. Charlies. Chestnuts. Clangers. Clappers. Clock weights. Coffee stalls. Cojones. Crystals. Cubes. Danglers. Diamonds. Dodads. Dohickeys. Family jewels. Frick and frack. Gooseberries. Jingleberries. Knockers. Love apples. Male mules. Marbles. Marshmallows. Mountain Oysters. Niagra Falls. Nicknacks. Nutmegs. Nuts. Orchestra stalls. Oysters. Pebbles. Plums. Rocks. Seeds. Spunk holders. Stones. Swingers. Tallywags. Testimonials. The twins. Vitals. Whirlygigs. The bazooka. A bit of hard. A bit of stiff. The bone. A boner. Captain Standish. The cockstand. Colleen Bawn. Crack a fat. The cunt stretcher. Fixed bayonets. A full. The golden rivet. A hard-on. The horn. In one's best clothes. In one's Sunday best. An Irish toothache. Jack. A lance at rest. The Marquess of Lorn. Morning pride. Old Hornington. Old horny. Be on thestand. Be piss proud. Be proud below the navel. The rail. The ramrod. The reamer. To rise in one's Levi's. The roaring horn. Roaring Jack. The rock python. The spike. The stalk. The standard. The standing member. Standingware. Stiff and stout. A stiff one. Stiffy. A toothache. A wood. A woody. Ball off. Beat off. Beat your hog. Beat the bishop. Beat the dummy. Beat the meat. Beat the pup. Belt your hog. The blanket drill. Bop the baloney. Box the Jesuit. Bring down by hand. Chicken milking. Choke the chicken. Coax the cajones. Cuff your governor. Diddle yourself. Do paw-paw tricks. Dong flogging. Fight your turkey. Fist fuck. Five against one. Flog yourself. Flog your log. Flong your dong. Fondle your fig. Frig yourself. Fuck Mary Fist. Gallop your antelope. Get a hold of yourself. Get your nuts off. Gherkin jerking. Grip it. Hand jive. A hand job. Handle yourself. Jack off. Jag off. Jazz yourself. Jerk off. Jerk your gherkin. Keep the census down. Lizard milking. Manipulate your mango. Manual exercise. Manual pollution. Milk the lizard. The one-legged race. Paddle the pickle. Play with yourself. Plunk your twanger. The Portuguese pump. Pound off. Pound your pomegranate. Pond your pud. Pound the meat. Prod the peepee. Pull yourself off. Pull your pud. Pull your pudding. Pull your wire. Pump your pickle. Pump your python. Rub off. Shag off. She-bop. Shower spank. Simple infanticide. Sling your jelly. Sling your juice. Snap the rubber. Snap the whip. A soldier's joy. The solitary sin. Spank yourself. Squeeze the lemon. Stroke yourself. Stroke the lizard. Strum your clitty. Take yourself in hand. Tickle your crack. Tickle your pickle. Toss off. Twang your wire. Wank off. Whack off. Whack the bishop. Whang off. Whank off. Whip off. Whip the dummy. Whip your wire. Work off. Work off. Yank off. Yank your strap. Yank your yam. Adam and Eve it. Be in a woman's beef. Be up to one's balls. Beat someone up with an ugly stick. Boink someone. Bone someone. Bop someone. Bump bellies. Bunny fuck. Bury the weenie. Buzz the brillo. Cream someone. Dance the buttock jig. Dance the matrimonial polka. Dance the mattress jig. Dip your wick. Do a bit of front door action. Do a dicky dick. Do a dive in the dark. Do a four-legged frolic. Do a grumble and grunt. Do a lewd infusion. Do boom-boom. Do dirty work at the crossroads. Do horizontal exercises. Do some ladies' tailoring. Do some nose painting. Do some rump work. Do some twat raking. Do target practice. Do the act of darkness. Do the bone dance. Do the chores. Do the featherbed jig. Do the horizontal hula. Do the naughty. Do the ugly. Drive home. Eat cauliflower. Eat hymeneal sweets. Enjoy a flesh session. Exchange spit. Fan someone. Feed the dummy. Fit end to end. Fix her plumbing. Flop in the hay. Get a belly full of marrow pudding. Get a pair of balls against your butt. Get a shove in your blind eye. Get into someone's pants. Get jack in the orchard. Get oats from someone. Get your ashes hauled. Get your chimney swept out. Get your end wet. Get your hair cut. Get your leather stretched. Get your nuts cracked. Get your oil changed. Give a hole to hide in. Give a woman a shot. Give hard for soft. Give her a hosing. Give her a pat. Give her the business. Give juice for jelly. Give pussy a taste of cream. Give someone a stab. Give someone the works. Give the dog a bone. Go bed-pressing. Go belly-to-belly. Go fishing. Go like a belt-fed motor. Go like a rat up a drainpipe. Go like a rat up a rhododendron. Go on bush patrol. Go rump-splitting. Go star-gazing on your back. Go to town. Go to work with someone. Goose someone. Grease the wheel. Grind your tool. Hammer someone. Haul your ashes. Have a bit of curly greens. Have a bit of fish. Have a bit of fun. Have a bit of giblet pie. Have a bit of pork. Have a bit of skirt. Have a bit of split mutton. Have a bit of sugar stick. Have a bit of summer cabbage. Have a bit of the cramstick. Have a blanket drill. Have a bun in the oven. Have a hot roll with cream. Have a joy ride. Have a lady feast. Have a navel engagement. Have a nooner. Have a northwest cocktail. Have a piece of tail. Have a poke. Have a roll in the hay. Have a squeeze and a squirt. Have a turn on your back. Have gin on the rocks. Have hot pudding for supper. Have live sausage for supper. Hide the salami. Hide the sausage. Horizontalize. Hose someone. Hump someone. Impale someone. Introduce Charlie. Invade someone. Jab someone. Jiggle someone. Join paunches. Juice someone. Jump on someone's bones. Lay some pipe. Lie feet up. Lift a leg on someone. Light the lamp. Look at the ceiling over a man's shoulder. Lose the match and pocket the stake. Lubricate someone. Make baskets. Make ends meet. Make feet for children's shoes. Make her grunt. Mingle bloods. Mingle limbs. Mix your peanut butter. Mount someone. Nail someone. Nail two bellies together. Nibble someone. Open up to someone. Parallel park. Peel your best end. Phallicize someone. Plant a man. Play at in-and-out Play at tops-and- bottoms. Play cars and garages. Play doctor. Play hide the weenie. Play hospital. Play night baseball. Play on the hair court. Play pickle-me, tickle-me. Play the first game ever played. Play the organ. Play the trombone. Play tiddlywinks. Plow someone. Plug someone. Poke someone. Pop it in. Pork someone. Post a letter. Pound someone. Pray with the knees upward. Pump someone. Put four quarters on the spit. Put the bee in the hive. Put the boots to someone. Put the devil into Hell. Ram someone. Ride someone. Ride the hobby horse. Roller skate. Rub bacons. Sacrifice to Venus. Saw off a chunk. Screw someone. Shake a skin coat. Shake the sheets. Shoot between wind and water. Shoot your wad. Schtupp someone. Sink it in. Sink the soldier. Slam someone. Slip someone the hot beef injection. Smoke someone. Spear the bearded clam. Split someone. Stab a woman in the thigh. Stain someone. Stretch leather. Suck the sugar-stick. Take a belly-ride. Take a trip up the Rhine. Take a turn in the stubble. Take a turn on Shooter's Hill. Take Nebuchadnezzar out to grass. Take the starch out of someone. Taste someone. Tear off a piece. Tell a bedtime story. Thread the needle. Throw a leg over. Tie the true lover's knot. Trade a bit of hard for a bit of soft. Trim the buff. Trot out your pussy. Varnish your cane. Wank someone. Wet your bottom. Wet your wick. Whitewash someone. Wind up your clock. Work out. Work the hairy oracle. Wriggle navels. Yield your favors. Zig-zag someone.

Have this list committed to memory by Monday. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated.

-Lowry Mays
Chairman and CEO, Clear Channel Broadcasting
-Michael Powell
Chairman and CEO, Federal Communications Commission

Fun With Free Polls!

Which word used to describe Hillary Clinton would definitely apply to Condi Rice?
Free polls from

Conason Interviews Clarke

You can read it commercial-free at

We're One Proud Blog

Call Take Back The Media the genius Robert Crumb.
Call Hoffmania! the dumpy Harvey Pekar.

TBTM's Don Waller turned our little idea into American Splendor in his latest Flash commercial. Click:

Who's Raising Money For George W. Bush?

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Then come back here and do your part.

Kerry's Back From Snowboarding

While Bush is still trying to figure out that Segway. Time to crank up our machine.

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Contribute. Vote. Win.

Memo To The White House

Dear White House,

Today, I watched in great admiration as Scott McClellan "knocked the cornerstone out of Richard Clarke's story." Wow! It took a few days, and time will only tell - but it seems you finally destroyed this man once and for all! YEAH! And according to my calculations, as of this moment, you've officially spent more of our resources on fighting this bad man Clarke than you did on pre-war intelligence. Way to go! You cannot stand idly by and not defend your negligence, you betcha.

So let me propose this:

If Richard Clarke is so wrong, and the gang of you is so right, then you've spent a lot of your time and our money defending yourself against such a big fat hairy liar. So why not give the taxpayers a refund on the collective salaries reflecting the time your attack dogs battled this guy who's no longer on our payroll?

Oh...better yet! Give that money to the rich so we can continue seeing that robust job growth!

I know you'll all do the right thing. You've been telling us that since this thing began.

Thanks! Keep up the good moral fight! Clarke only spoke under oath. You guys have Fox!

The liar trying to curry favor with 9/11 families. The nerve!

Oh, We're Dyin' From Laughter Over Here

Do a Google News search for Bush WMDs and you'll get six solid pages of this story (KTVU/SF's version here has a poll - go take it. It was pretty even as of this posting):

Bush Makes Jokes About Lack Of WMDs In Iraq

WASHINGTON -- President George W. Bush poked fun at his staff, his Democratic challenger and himself Wednesday night at a black-tie dinner where he hobnobbed with the news media.

Bush put on a slide show, calling it the "White House Election-Year Album" at the Radio and Television Correspondents' Association 60th annual dinner, showing himself and his staff in some decidedly unflattering poses.

There was Bush looking under furniture in a fruitless, frustrating search. "Those weapons of mass destruction have got to be somewhere," he said.

And there was Bush again, in an odd contortion in front of his national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice. He said he was trying to explain to her the foreign policy of Democratic challenger John Kerry.

His slide show segued into a somber ending, showing a group of special forces troops in Afghanistan at the site where they buried a piece of the fallen World Trade Center in commemoration of the dead from Sept. 11.
In comedy, what is the most imporTIMING!tant thing?

KTLA's Morning News here in LA showed the clip, and anchors Carlos Amezcua and Michaela Pereira were just yucking it up, saying, "That guy's got a great sense of humor!" Wonder if these wacky folks' families would agree.

What's The Difference Between Condi and Clarke?

Richard Clarke said his piece UNDER OATH. Condi refuses to do so, and instead spreads venom and vindictiveness.

She'll talk to Fox. She'll talk to CNN. She'll talk to CBS, NBC and ABC.

She'll talk her ass off to everyone - except under oath at the 9/11 hearings.

Condi's ethics - whatever she had of them - have left the building. My dad, may he rest in piece, would bluntly call her "chickenshit." I'd wholeheartedly agree.
Rice forcefully rebuts Clarke testimony
Releases e-mail she says contradicts his charges

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- National security adviser Condoleezza Rice said Wednesday that administration records -- including former White House counterterrorism official Richard Clarke's own words and actions -- prove false his "scurrilous allegation that somehow the president of the United States was not attentive to the terrorist threat."

Forcefully rebutting Clarke's testimony Wednesday to the 9/11 commission, Rice called reporters to her West Wing office and said that on July 5, 2001 -- two months before the terrorist attacks -- she personally ordered Clarke to alert domestic agencies that they needed to be on alert for the possibility of a terror strike.

Rice said she did so because of a "threat spike" in U.S. intelligence. While the intelligence suggested al Qaeda attacks in the Persian Gulf region or Israel, Rice said she and White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card decided to ask Clarke to take some precautions domestically.

Clarke testified Wednesday that the administration did little in the spring and summer of 2001 to prepare for possible attacks in the United States. To rebut that charge, Rice released unclassified portions of an e-mail Clarke sent to her on September 15, 2001, four days after the attacks.
Yeah, Condi. Okay. Blah, blah, blah. Your words mean nothing. NOTHING. Take your pals and fellow attack dogs and just go away. NOW. You're officially useless and irrelevant.

While Rice chose to sing with the Liar's Choir, Clarke was a picture of marked contrast. Both literally AND figuratively, Richard Clarke bravely stood alone at the 9/11 hearing - and came away a true American patriot.

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Clean the ugly stains. Help Kerry win.

Wednesday, March 24

From the Pen of: Ann Telnaes

Bushnocchio immortalized.

You're Joking, Right?

Please tell me you're joking.

In Your Face, Condi! Up Yours, McClellan!

Richard Clarke at the 9/11 hearings today:

Randy Beers worked in the White House for the first President Bush, and Randy Beers worked in the White House for the second President Bush. And just because he is now working for Senator Kerry, I am not going to disassociate myself from one of my best friends and someone who I greatly respect and worked with for 25 years. And, yes, I will admit, I co-teach a class at the Harvard University and Georgetown University with Mr. Beers. That, I don't think, makes me a member of the Kerry campaign. The White House has said that my book is an audition for a high- level position in the Kerry campaign. So let me say here as I am under oath, that I will not accept any position in the Kerry administration, should there be one -- on the record, under oath.
America waits with great futility for Condi Rice to say anything under oath to this committee. And Scott McClellan's conscience - if he has one - should allow him only 2 hours of sleep this week. Screw 'em. Figuratively.

Beat The Fenderheads

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Broadband Corner: Last Night's Daily Show

Here's Jon Stewart's (and an unnamed video editor's) BRILLIANT coverage of the attack on Richard Clarke (RealPlayer):

Belittle Richard

Yay! The "A" Word Rears Its Ugly Head!

If you had 2:37pm PT in your "Angry" pool, you win! Wolf "Unfolding and Dramatic" Blitzer just reported that Bush administration insiders say that Richard Clarke was prone to sudden outbursts of ANGER.

Man, these crackheads will keep using that word on their critics until it either sticks or it dies of abuse.

What Was The One Issue The New Bush Administration Focused On?

Not terrorism. Not al Qaeda. Let's refresh your memory. It was this urgent national security issue:

Outgoing Clintonoids Vandalized White House
Friday, Jan. 26, 2001

Those slovenly misfits Gary Aldrich encountered in the White House in the earliest days of the Clinton administration were apparently still there when Bill and Hillary left the Executive Mansion for the last time – true to form, they left the place in a shambles.

The cost of cleaning up the effects of the deliberate vandalism caused by Clinton and Gore White House staffers could exceed $250,000, according to an official of the General Services Administration (GSA).

The American Spectator quoted an inspector who was called in to assess the vandalism as saying that several executive desks were damaged to the point that they must be replaced, and several more offices must be repainted because of graffiti. Entire computer keyboards will have to be replaced because the damage to them is more extensive than simply missing keys.

'The Place Was a Pigsty'

"The place was a pigsty," a Bush White House staffer told the Spectator. "The Gore and Clinton people didn't 'clean out' the place because there was nothing clean about what they did before they left."
Remember that? It was significant in that it was the Bush administration's first big lie. It's been all downhill since.

Kerry Folks: Thwart This. NOW

Oh yeah. Kerry's evil, evil, evil. A tax-and-spend machine.

That's why Massacusetts has been voting for him for two freakin' decades.

(And don't accept that "Liberal Massachusetts" crap. Look who they elected as their governor.)

350 Tax Increases?

One of the weapons in Bush's arsenal is an old family heirloom. Bush fired it himself at his big Florida rally over the weekend. He asserted that John Kerry had voted for higher taxes 350 times during Kerry's 20 years in the Senate. Vice President Dick Cheney and other presidential surrogates have been using this statistoid for several weeks, and it has been picked up and repeated in the conservative media echo chamber. In 1992, Bush's father charged that Bill Clinton, as governor of Arkansas, had raised taxes 128 times. This shabby and deeply disingenuous allegation ultimately became an embarrassment to the elder Bush, but it took weeks and months of pounding by the media and the opposition to make it this way. I'm hoping to spare us all that with a Powell-Doctrine-like strike early on.

The purpose of a phony statistic like this one isn't really to persuade people of its own accuracy. The purpose is to trap your opponent in a discussion he doesn't want to have (in this case about his past votes about taxes), bog the discussion down in silly details that few people will follow, and leave a general impression that where there is smoke, there must be fire.

Beware The Headlines

Today, you'll find headlines like this:

Miscommunication Under Clinton Hurt Terror Fight, Report Says
But don't fall for what we're sure will be a big fat juicy talking point for the wingnut radio machine. Here's what the story says:

There was a clash between the intentions of administration officials, who said President Bill Clinton clearly approved covert actions to kill bin Laden, and the understanding of top officials in the Central Intelligence Agency, who felt their instructions were to try to capture him, the report says.
Gonna be hard for the fenderheads to attack Clinton on his desire to aim to kill - exactly what they say THEY want.

Morning Wood

Here he is sporting his wares. Pretty amazing.

Worst Headline of the Day

Just read it and weep.

Planning On Being A Senior? Forget It.

Medicare Could Go Broke by 2019

Escalating costs and expanded benefits are pushing Medicare toward insolvency sooner than expected, the government said Tuesday, increasing pressure on the White House and Congress to rein in healthcare spending.

The trust fund that covers hospital benefits for 41 million elderly Americans will run out of money in 2019, seven years earlier than projected a year ago, according to the annual report of Social Security and Medicare trustees.

Stupidity Defined

CNN's well-groomed Bill Hemmer asked what has to be one of the most idiotic questions of the entire Richard Clarke episode - and there have been plenty.

HEMMER: I am hearing from some families of the victims from 9/11, they're saying if it was such an urgent matter, if you truly believed the White House botched the war on terror beginning on September 12, why now on such a critical national, international issue do you write the book in March of 2004?

CLARKE: I wrote the book as soon as I retired from government. It was finished last fall and it sat in the White House for months, because as a former White House official my book has to be reviewed by the White House for security purposes. This book could have come out a long time ago, months and months ago if the White House hadn't sat on it.

HEMMER: The White House is saying they only check the facts when it comes to the book itself and whether or not they are sacrificing national security.

CLARKE: They took months and months to do it. They're saying, why is the book coming out at the beginning of the election? I didn't want it to come out at the beginning of the election. I wanted it to come out last year. They're the reason, because they took so long to clear it.
If Hemmer had an ounce of knowledge, he'd KNOW that unless you're Stephen King, books take years to write, especially for a first-timer like Clarke. I know. My wife's a writer. We both have friends who are authors. YEARS.

Oh, and Bill - stop with the invoking of 9/11 families unless it's relevant, okay?

Tuesday, March 23

Bush's Top Whistleblowers

We tried to do it ourselves, but MediaFreeze gives us a great list (with links) of this administration's former cabinet members/employees who have spoken out against their idiocy. Check it out.

Catch The Daily Show Rerun Tomorrow

A brilliant - BRILLIANT editing job of Condi and McClellan's almost-verbatim echoing the official White House smearing script against Richard Clarke in their appearances today. Beautiful in an insane way with a killer payoff.

Folks, if you're not TiVoing, taping or watching The Daily Show religiously, start now.

What We Learned At The 9/11 Hearings Today

The Bush administration was woefully underwhelmed by the prospect of putting terrorism on their plates.

The outgoing adminstration placed this as the #1 security concern when Bush took over.

Madeline Albright underscored the importance of the threats during Clinton's term.

Rumsfeld basically told the committee the transition slowed their reaction time to the crisis.

But what are we going to hear about in the next 24 hours? This bullcrap. What Clinton didn't do. Fuggin' A.

What the blue hell has Bush done about bin Laden that gives him a free pass? I know. Rhetorical question.

Et Tu, David Kay?

WOW. The floodgates are weakening...

Iraq Charges Against Bush Begin to Mount

Criticism of President Bush's motives and decision-making in attacking Iraq last year may be acquiring critical mass with voters following criticism by former top counterterrorism official Richard Clarke.

Political consultants and analysts said Clarke's allegation that Bush ignored the al Qaeda threat before the Sept. 11 attacks and was obsessed by a desire to invade Iraq were especially damaging because they confirmed other previous revelations from policy insiders.

Before Clarke, there was former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill, who asserted in a book published in January that Bush began laying the groundwork for an attack on Iraq from the moment he took office.

Then came the bombshell from former weapons inspector David Kay that the Iraqi weapons of mass destruction that Bush launched the war to find and destroy probably did not exist.

Kay on Tuesday warned that U.S. credibility at home and abroad was in grave danger and urged the Bush administration to own up to its intelligence failures.

"We are in grave danger of having destroyed our credibility internationally and domestically with regard to warning about future events," he said. "The answer is to admit you were wrong, and what I find most disturbing around Washington ... is the belief ... you can never admit you're wrong."
George...I think we're at the point where even Jeebus is going to give up on trying to save you...

"Bush's 9/11 Myths Endanger U.S."

Marie Cocco kicks serious ass in Newsday:

[Richard Clarke's] new book, "Against all Enemies," indicts Bush for propagating the two myths: That he did everything possible to fight terrorism before 9/11. And that Iraq is related to the war on terror.

"Osama bin Laden had been saying for years, 'America wants to invade an Arab country and occupy it, an oil-rich Arab country,'" Clarke said in a "60 Minutes" interview coinciding with the book's release. "We stepped right into bin Laden's propaganda."

The White House answers with rhetorical roaring guns. Condoleezza Rice - the national security adviser who refuses to testify publicly before the 9/11 investigative commission - pressed her counter-spin in The Washington Post. The administration claims a key conversation Clarke says he had with the president never took place. CBS News and The Washington Post both report they've verified the conversation.

The public must choose between one who long served presidents of both parties and an incumbent whose claim to re-election rests on assertion of robust leadership against terror.

The myths loom large. It is not unprecedented for a people to be so fearful they are deluded. But it is more dangerous than ever.
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If The White House Is So Confident, Why Do They Pull Piddly Crap Like This?

I swear, I'm going to Washington and slap each and every one of these little bastards. Uh-oh - that could be interpreted as a threat against the government...

Clarke Praises Bush in Resignation Letter

WASHINGTON - The White House, seeking to cool criticism from a former top anti-terror adviser, said Tuesday that Richard Clarke's resignation letter praised President Bush's "courage, determination, calm and leadership" on Sept. 11, 2001.

"It has been an enormous privilege to serve you these last 24 months," said the Jan. 20, 2003, letter from Clarke to Bush. "I will always remember the courage, determination, calm, and leadership you demonstrated on September 11th."

The letter was stamped "the president has seen" the next day.

White House spokesman Scott McClellan suggested Clarke's praise belies his later criticism of Bush's handling of the crisis.

"At this time period, when he was leaving, there was no mention of the grave concerns he claims to have had about the direction of the war on terrorism, or what we were doing to confront the threat posed by Iraq, by the former regime," McClellan said.
We all know perfectly well that if Clarke had written a critcal message that (a) it would never see the light of day and (b) if it did, it would be deemed that Clarke had an axe to grind since Bush took office. It's a lose-lose scenario and one which the White House should hang its head in shame over - for being so petty and mean-spirited.

Clarke's signoff was nothing more than a nod of respect to the President of the United States. For the Bush administration to pull this out as written proof that Clarke is dishonest is just immature and weak. Anyone who sees this as a major chink in Clarke's armor is a fool.

I'm really despising these people.

From the Pen of: Jeff Danziger

9/11 Hearings: Powell

Colin Powell is emphatically telling how the Bush administration was diligently going after al Qaeda from day one, and how Rice made it her top priority within one week of coming into office since it was such a severe threat.

Uh-huh. That's why Rumsfeld declared Iraq the #1 suspect when 9/11 happened. That's why the #1 counterterrorism official (Richard Clarke) was kept out of those many many meetings he "wasn't privy to."

I have appointments to keep today. Leave a comment if anyone drills Powell on these discrepancies.

Site Redesign Underway

We're going to attempt a script retool to take care of a lot of the problems readers are experiencing - notably the left navigation column which some people see in the middle of their screens or don't see at all (maximizing your browser window generally takes care of that). Bear with us for the next couple of days, and we'll try to do this without blowing the site up. Thanks!

9/11 Hearings Quick Observation

Madeline Albright was desperately trying to keep the hearings on an even keel and stick to the facts, while the Repubs doing the questioning were trying to hammer her in an attempt to audition for their own talkshows. These people are insanely predictable.

Now batting...Colin Powell.

More Protest Photos

Reader Dan in New York sent along links to photos of Saturday's marches in NYC and Albany, Click to see 'em:
NYC (taken by Dan's wife Lynne)

Monday, March 22

Added To The Links

The Center For American Progress is now permanently enshrined in the Daily Links column to the left. Their reportage of White House records leading up to 9/11 today should be saved for future generations.

Sobering Revelation By The Zogby Poll

Don't even think about it, Karl.

If a major terrorist attack were again to hit the United States, 51% of likely voters prefer to be led by Bush as compared to Kerry with 40%.
Which means today, America would reward a zero-and-seven record with a win. Go fig.

Now the good news.

Overall, however, President Bush's job performance rating continues to slide with 53% of likely voters giving him an negative rating (Fair-Poor), and 46% granting him a positive rating (Excellent-Good). On the important re-elect question, only 45% say that the President “deserves to be re-elected”, while 51% say it “time for someone new” in.
Conclusion: Kerry's got to pick a veep and hit the campaign trail with his jets on full thrust. People need to know Kerry a lot better than they do now.

One Thing About Our Troops - They Obey Orders

From the Tacoma News Tribune:

Before Bush appeared, small U.S. flags were handed out, and an officer gave instructions to the troops on how to receive the commander in chief. "We're going to show him a lot of love by waving flags," the officer said. Telling the troops not to salute, he added: "You're going to wave and clap and make a lot of noise. ... You must smile. We are happy campers here."

Tower Two, Tower One, The Pentagon, Bali, Saudi Arabia, Madrid

So far, Bush is 0-6 in foreseeing al Qaeda's most deadly attacks, not even counting the small scale stuff.

0 for 6.

An NLL franchise with that kind of record would fold its tent by now.

Silly Question To Y'All

Fed up with an administration who spends more time and money defending their negligence than defending America?

Thought so. Kick in any amount you can.
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Others Who Left The Bush Administration Over Incompetence

Along with Paul O'Neill and Richard Clarke...

Rich Biondi, Bruce Buckheit and J.P. Suarez
Eric Schaeffer
James Furnish
John DiIulio

We still haven't heard about anyone in the Clinton administration besides Dick Morris who defected for perceived screwed-up policies.

C-SPAN's Ratings Are About To Hit The Roof

The September 11th Hearings will be televised bright and early tomorrow on C-SPAN1 9a East, 6a West. Coffee with that Crow Omelette?

Uh-Oh: The White House Has GOT To Be Dizzy

The spinning is almost out of control. CNN counted no less than 15 interviews lined up by the White House to counter last night's devastating Richard Clarke interview. Just now, the WH communications director drove home the point that these jackasses are going to drive until this goes away:

Despite Clark's emphatically calling for a meeting on the topic, there were many many meetings about the al Qaeda terror threat that Clarke wasn't in on.

We're not going to use the bold italic huge fonts here. We're going to say this very, very quietly:

If you're calling meetings about the terror threat, why didn't you invite the head of the NSC's counterterrorism department, Richard Clarke? Only makes sense, doesn't it?

So far, not one reporter has challenged them on this point. Gutless.

From the Pen of: Jeff Danziger

Bush's Bagmen

Must-save article: Rolling Stone's piece on Bush's biggest fundraisers. You'll never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy...

Quote of the Day

"[They're] out-of-control men who need Jesus to keep them in line."

- Howard Stern describing Bush and Cheney

The Terrorists Have Beaten This Guy

Wow. The lead letter in today's L.A. Times has this panicky missive. I think this Mr. Chrisman needs to check into getting some professional help, because he doesn't seem to have ANY faith in our ability to defend ourselves against an attack - real or imaginary...nor can he decide if his beloved president is legit. When you let Bush's paranoia rule your life, you write stuff like this.

On this first anniversary of the war in Iraq I have read and heard countless editorial comments on the terrible price paid for a war based on lies of the president. We hear that there are no weapons of mass destruction. We hear there is no evidence that Saddam Hussein was linked to Al Qaeda. We hear that Hussein was not an imminent threat to the U.S. We hear there was no reason to go to war. And the press, a willing participant in the leftist ideology spewed in these diatribes, rants on and on about the needless tragedy of the war in Iraq. Perhaps the ranters would have preferred more evidence of the imminent threat posed by Iraq before entering into a conflict — like a mushroom cloud over New York or Washington.

To blindly ignore the threat that the Middle East poses to civilization on planet Earth is to invite destruction. You cannot appease, you cannot bargain, you cannot negotiate. Fanaticism is not logical, just blindly zealous. All I need to know about Hussein and Osama bin Laden and the rest of militant Islam is that they want me and those I love dead. If you know that some people are going to kill you, and the only way to prevent it is to kill them, you kill them, period. You don't give them a second chance, you don't plead on your knees, "Don't kill me." You don't say, "We'll give you anything you ask."

We can't "just get along." And for those of you who want to go on believing there is no evidence that Hussein was a threat to America, be thankful that George W. Bush stole the election, or you would be on your knees this very moment.

David Charles Chrisman
Westlake Village

Sunday, March 21

So The Wife And I Were Talking...

Tonight's 60 Minutes prompted this little discussion. We know that Paul O'Neill and Richard Clarke are two former Bush cabinet members who have gone on to - if not renounce their former boss - at least severely question Bush's abilities and decisions...going so far as to chronicle them in books.

Out of sheer curiosity, we have two questions which we'll pose to you guys:
1) Has anyone else from Bush's administration done this?
2) Aside from Dick Morris, who in Clinton's cabinet did the same to him?

The lines are open...

The Word Spreads Around The World

Watch the fun as tonight's Richard Clarke interview makes its way across the planet: Google News.

Notable is this from the London Telegraph:

Yesterday those unnamed aides told reporters that Mr Clarke's media forays were "an audition" for a role in Sen John Kerry's Democratic presidential campaign.

But Chuck Hegel, a Republican senator from Nebraska, said: "The administration is going to have to answer some of these charges. His book is obviously serious. It comes from a serious professional."

Watch, Tape, TiVo, Peek Into A Neighbor's Window To See "60 Minutes" Tonight

That's an order.

UPDATE: Just watched the east coast feed. It's even more chilling than what we've been reading. Richard Clarke puts forth an amazing (and thoroughly convincing) indictment of Bush and his gang of thugs while Steven Hadley comes off as a bald-faced liar and just another criminal in the White House. Lesley Stahl (despite her perpetuating some White House rhetoric) absolutely nailed Hadley with the evidence. He reacts with the classic furrowed-brow Bush Cartel sputter - much like Rumsfeld's appearance on CBS last week.

No wonder the feds are ganging up on Mel Karmazin...his network keeps making them look like the jackasses they are. Keep it up, CBS. Keep it up. Your bravery is duly noted.

Order Clarke's book now and save 30%. It drops tomorrow.

Lou Dobbs: Not As Bush As He Used To Be

From today's NY Times Mag:

More globally inclined economists insist that the creation of a middle class in poor countries overseas benefits everyone. And aren't people in India as entitled to jobs as people in America?

Are you willing to sacrifice 600,000 American jobs and employees to create jobs overseas? I love India. I love the Indian people. But the idea that we can sacrifice an American family to create jobs overseas is insensitive beyond belief.

What political party are you registered with?

I don't want to get into partisan things.

You're already in the middle of them.

O.K., then here we go. I am a lifelong Republican. I voted for George W. Bush. But right now, I would have to say I'm an Independent.

If the election were held tomorrow, whom would you vote for?

I wouldn't vote for either man. They've got a lot to prove to me.

The White House Is Setting The Discussion

Say what you want about the dishonesty of the Bush ads - they're getting played gratis and often on the Sunday talkshows. And the subsequent discussion dwells on what's said on those commercials - which grinds home the message of the ads - which drills the message into the viewers' minds.

Kerry and the DNC need to ratchet up the message - whatever it will be. Grab an issue. There are plenty. Job outsourcing. The imminent threat of the trashed environment. The character of Bush's biggest fundraisers. The carnage in Iraq. Take that issue and shove it in the face of America. Rub Bush's nose in it. But do SOMETHING.

Start with that butt-ugly Flash animation at the DNC site. PLEASE. We've written an ad which we've passed along to our pals at Take Back The Media to weave their animation skills. Check out the script, and let us know your thoughts. The info comes from Barry Yeoman's outstanding Rolling Stone article, "Bush's Bagmen."

The head of MBNA, America's #1 issuer of credit cards
Raised $150,000

The CEO of America's 2nd largest poultry company
Whose product caused eight deaths and the largest meat recall in history in 2002
Raised $100,000

The president of First-Energy
A constant violator of the Clean Air Act
Who helped the industry get $19 billion in tax breaks
Raised more than $200,000

The former head of the Christian Coalition
Who became a lobbyist for the utilities
And had Enron as a client with the help of Karl Rove
Raised over $200,000

One of the biggest tobacco growers in South Carolina
Raised $530,000

The heir to Johnson & Johnson, the world's largest health care product company
Raised $700,000

The CEO of Merrill Lynch
Who got $300,000 in tax cuts on an income of $14.3 million
Raised $4,000,000

These people want George W. Bush for another four years.

Fortunately, in America...

Your vote counts as much as theirs...

Vote smart.
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Bush Merchandise Comes From "Brutal Dictatorships"

I think we've reached the point where these fenderheads are doing so many things wrong and with such flagrant stupidity that the average American simply can't wrap their head around it. It's almost as if the campaign is depending on it.

Made-In-Burma Jacket Stirs Flap for Bush Campaign

A "Bush-Cheney '04" campaign jacket sold on the Internet has stirred controversy because it was made in Myanmar, whose imports have been banned by the United States.

Although the company that shipped the fleece pullover, Spalding Group of Louisville, Kentucky, has said it did so in error, human rights groups blamed President Bush's re-election campaign staff for not taking a more careful look at the origin of the products being sold in its name.

The Bush administration has had sanctions in place since September against Myanmar -- also known by its colonial name Burma -- in an attempt to punish the government over human rights violations.

"Burma is one of the most repressive, brutal dictatorships in the world," said Charles Kernagan, head of the National Labor Committee, a group that seeks to combat sweatshops internationally. "The Bush-Cheney campaign was putting money into the hands of dictators with that purchase."

Saturday, March 20

Bush Calls For Global Unity Over Iraq

Dear Mr. Bush,

The world is united. Thanks for your concern.

South Korea and Italy...

Scotland, Germany and Japan...

UK and Paris

(whose citizens bravely seem to have no fear of large groups after a terror attack)...

Budapest and Honduras...

And here at home in New York...



If you were involved in world unity today, let us know.