This was sent to me by a friend in the UK (and he's not coming back until democracy is restored in the USA and King George is once again overthrown)

Analysis by G. Edward Griffin / September 16, 2005

There has been widespread criticism of the response of US officials to Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans in 2005. The tone of these complaints is that the authorities failed to do their job quickly enough...

These reports make it clear that the government did not fail to respond in a timely fashion. The problem was that it did respond - but in such a way as to actually hinder rescue operations. There were too many instances for this to be merely a mistake or a bureaucratic snafu. There is a clear pattern here that cannot be denied. Why this should be so will be discussed in a moment, but first, here is the amazing record.

FEMA tells first responders not to respond until told to do so.
FEMA News 2005 Aug 29

FEMA won't accept Amtrak's help in evacuations.
FEMA News 2005 Aug 29

Offer of helicopters for rescue work is rejected.
Narcosphere 2005 Sept 1

FEMA blocks 500 Florida airboat pilots from rescue work.
Sun Sentinel 2005 Sept 2

FEMA to Chicago: Send just one truck.
Chicago Tribune 2005 Sept 2

FEMA bars morticians from entering New Orleans.
Tri Valley Central 2005 Sept 2

FEMA blocks 500-boat citizen flotilla from delivering aid.
Daily Kos 2005 Sept 3

Homeland Security won't let Red Cross deliver food.
Post Gazette 2005 Sept 3

FEMA fails to utilize Navy ship with 600-bed hospital onboard.
Chicago Tribune 2005 Sept 4

FEMA cuts local emergency communications phone lines.
Meet the Press 2005 Sept 4

FEMA turns away experienced firefighters.
Daily Kos 2005 Sept 5

FEMA turns back Wal-Mart supply trucks.
NY Times 2005 Sept 5

FEMA prevents Coast Guard from delivering diesel fuel.
NY Times 2005 Sept 5

Navy pilots who rescued victims are reprimanded.
NY Times 2005 Sept 7

US government turns back German plane with 15 tons of aid.
Star Tribune 2005 Sept 10

FEMA declines volunteer firemen for rescue operations.
Uses them to distibute public relations pamphlets.
Salt Lake Tribune 2005 Sept 12

WHY? He goes on:

The primary job of the military, FEMA, and Homeland Security is not to protect the American people in times of emergency but to protect the government in times of emergency and keep it functioning. Their primary assignment is, not to rescue people, but to control them. Their directive is to relocate families and businesses, confiscate property, commandeer goods, direct labor and services, and establish martial law. The reason FEMA and Homeland security failed to carry out an effective rescue operation is that this was not their primary mission, and the reason they blocked others from doing so is that any operations not controlled by the central authority are contrary to their directives. Their objective was to bring the entire area under the control of the federal government - and this they succeeded in doing very well. They did not fail in New Orleans. They were a huge success. Once this simple fact is understood, everything that happened in the wake of Katrina becomes understandable and logical.

Click here to read the articles.

Makes sense, unfortunately.


Wake me when "Curb Your Enthusiasm" comes on.


Heeere, kitty kitty kitty. Heere kitty kitty.
Her name is Fluffy.


Yeah, Rattay brings back the old days -- pre-Montana Steve DeBerg, a QB who was "just good enough to lose games." He managed to run a pretty good game until the 4th quarter, too, when he loved to throw the ball to the other team, just for a change, I guess.


Another weekend full of excitement for 49er fans


Friday -- kitty cat picture day


Reid Demands Bennett Apologize for Remark

Apologize? Too easy.

(100 - 1 any apology includes words to the effect of "My comments were misinterpreted" or "taken out of context.")

Don't we have a Mussolini provision for people like this -- hang him upside down and beat him like a pinata.

Hey -- make it a big African/American - Latino/American Solidarity Festival and have booths and food and bands and charge people $5 each to hit the Bennetta with a big solid stick.

Fun for all, no?


Schwarzenegger Vetoes Gay Marriage Bill

"This bill simply adds confusion to a constitutional issue," the Republican governor said in a veto message.

So the eternal question is once again answered for us all:

"How can you tell chicken from chickenshit?"

If it's what Arnold DOES -- it's chickenshit.

If it's what Arnold IS -- it's just plain old chicken.

(How in hell can anyone married to Nightmare Before Christmas Maria Shriver think he can tell anyone else who or what to marry?)



Bill Bennett: eliminate black babies for less crime in America

And they -- the vicious right-wing crazies who charitably call themselves "Conservative" --they wonder why observors liken them to Nazis. Aside from the fact that Bush et al are intalling the finishing touches on a National Socialist system, i.e., monolithic merger between giant corporations and the state, there are other similarities.

First, here's the Columbia Encyclopedia's description of National Socialism:

... combined socialist economic ideas with rabid nationalism and opposition to democracy...

...demagogic appeals to latent hatred and violence... anti-Semitism, anti-Communist diatribes ... inner councils were swelled by such frustrated intellectuals as P. J. Goebbels, and by the element of riffraff typified by Julius Streicher, while its public adherents were heavily drawn from the depressed lower middle class... minimized the socialist features of the program. National Socialism made its appeal not to an economic class but rather to the insecure and power-hungry elements of society.

--- sound a little like Karl Rove's tactics and George Bush's "base?"

So here's what happened:

Bill Bennett, the man who completely bungled his appointment as Secretary of Education under Ronald Reagan and then failed miserably as Drug Tsar before deciding that he -- a degenerate gambler -- was therefore qualified to write a book telling people how to live -- a book beloved by simpletons and demagogues of the Right: "The Book of Virtues." Bennett explained on his radio show yesterday that America could reduce its crime rate by killing off al the black babies.

Media Matters has the audio.

It began when a caller to Bennett's radio show suggested that Social Security had been undercut by the loss of all those wage-earners aborted inthe past 30 years, but Bennett managed to turn the comment around and make it into a bit of racist poison.

Here's the transcript:

CALLER: I noticed the national media, you know, they talk a lot about the loss of revenue, or the inability of the government to fund Social Security, and I was curious, and I've read articles in recent months here, that the abortions that have happened since Roe v. Wade, the lost revenue from the people who have been aborted in the last 30-something years, could fund Social Security as we know it today. And the media just doesn't -- never touches this at all.

BENNETT: Assuming they're all productive citizens?

CALLER: Assuming that they are. Even if only a portion of them were, it would be an enormous amount of revenue.

BENNETT: Maybe, maybe, but we don't know what the costs would be, too. I think as -- abortion disproportionately occur among single women? No.

CALLER: I don't know the exact statistics, but quite a bit are, yeah.

BENNETT: All right, well, I mean, I just don't know. I would not argue for the pro-life position based on this, because you don't know. I mean, it cuts both -- you know, one of the arguments in this book Freakonomics* that they make is that the declining crime rate, you know, they deal with this hypothesis, that one of the reasons crime is down is that abortion is up. Well --

CALLER: Well, I don't think that statistic is accurate.

BENNETT: Well, I don't think it is either, I don't think it is either, because first of all, there is just too much that you don't know. But I do know that it's true that if you wanted to reduce crime, you could -- if that were your sole purpose, you could abort every black baby in this country, and your crime rate would go down. That would be an impossible, ridiculous, and morally reprehensible thing to do, but your crime rate would go down. So these far-out, these far-reaching, extensive extrapolations are, I think, tricky."

So my black friends have been right all along -- not that I doubted them, I just didn't think AIDS specifically had been created to wipe out the black and gay populations. I didn't think the virologists were clever enough.

But they got it right when they said that it's just below the surface -- the belief that eliminating all the people of color would be a good thing, good for America -- leaving only enough alive to perform as slaves for janitorial duties, cleaning out cesspools, and playing in the NFL. Certainly right below the surface with this thug who preaches virtue.

So how does that insincere disclaimer: "That would be an impossible, ridiculous, and morally reprehensible thing to do" differ from Richard Nixon's disingenuous comment when discussing how paying off the Watergate criminals for their silence would be possible, "BUT THAT WOULD BE WRONG."

Well, to answer my own question, Nixon was talking about covering up a burglary and a bunch of constitutional violations, while Bennett was talking casually about committing genocide.

Is it legal to shoot someone who spreads this sort of poison? Probably not.

Besides, being against the death penalty, I would prefer to sentence him to life in a room with Pat Robertson and Jimmy Swaggart, and they could all preach to each other.

*Freakonomics (William Morrow, May 2005) was written by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner. Levitt and Dubner argued that aborted fetuses would have been more likely to grow up poor and in single-parent or teenage-parent households and therefore more likely to commit crimes; they did not put forth Bennett's race-based argument. Perhaps they were aware of how many degenerate gamblers turn to mugging and robbery, how many serial killers are white, how many crooked politicians, etc. They seem to have considered this an across-the-board phenomenon.


Dear Roach-killer DeLay:

Sometimes you're the hammer

and sometimes you're the nail.

Which is why they say these words of wisdom:

Be careful the asses you kick on the way up --

they're the same ones you kiss onthe way down.

You had your fun, now pucker up, Bug Boy


Time to buy that tropical oceanfront property in the Dakotas.

In a Melting Trend, Less Arctic Ice to Go Around - New York Times

Published: September 29, 2005

The floating cap of sea ice on the Arctic Ocean shrank this summer to what is probably its smallest size in at least a century of record keeping, continuing a trend toward less summer ice, a team of climate experts reported yesterday.

The Cryosphere Today (University of Illinois Urbana Champaign)

That shift is hard to explain without attributing it in part to human-caused global warming, the team's members and other experts on the region said.

The change also appears to be headed toward becoming self-sustaining: the increased open water absorbs solar energy that would otherwise be reflected back into space by bright white ice, said Ted A. Scambos, a scientist at the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, Colo., which compiled the data along with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

"Feedbacks in the system are starting to take hold," Dr. Scambos said.

The data was released on the center's Web site.

On the positive side, that elusive Northwest Passage may finaly be open and useable.

The findings are consistent with recent computer simulations showing that a buildup of smokestack and tailpipe emissions of greenhouse gases could lead to a profoundly transformed Arctic later this century, when much of the once ice-locked ocean would routinely become open water in summers.

Expanding areas of open water in the summer could be a boon to whales and cod stocks, and the ice retreat could create summertime shipping shortcuts between the Atlantic and the Pacific.

But a host of troubles lie ahead as well. One of the most important consequences of Arctic warming will be increased flows of meltwater and icebergs from glaciers and ice sheets, and thus an accelerated rise in sea levels, threatening coastal areas. The loss of sea ice could also hurt both polar bears and Eskimo seal hunters.

Ok, so it's not ALL good news. But if you hurry, you can still get a great deal on land around the soon-to-be-tropical North Dakota. (Maybe Maxbass or Antler or Scurls)


Bush needs to stop appointing his Mommy surrogates to office

You got black mommy Condoleeza and blonde mommy Karen Hughes and Chicano mommies and...

Some are actually educated.

Ms Hughes isn't. She's just good at being big and blonde and pushy and and a fairly decent wordslinger and also a big-time invoker of that peculiar Southern Redneck form of the Christian religion that regards Jesus as an ass-kicker. For example:

The undersecretary's dangerous trip

By Sidney Blumenthal

Sept. 29, 2005

President Bush has no advisor more loyal and less self-serving than Karen Hughes. As governor of Texas he implicitly trusted the former Dallas television reporter turned press secretary with the tending of his image and words. She was mother hen of his persona. In the White House, Hughes devoted heart and soul to Bush as his communications director, until, suddenly, she returned home to Texas in 2002, citing her son's homesickness. There were reports that Karl Rove, jealous of power, had been sniping at her...

--- now children, don't fight -- there's enough plunder and -- ultimately -- enough shame and blame to go around for everyone..

...After two undersecretaries of state for public diplomacy resigned in frustration in the face of the precipitous loss of U.S. prestige around the globe, Bush found a new slot for Hughes this year. She may be the most parochial person ever to hold a senior State Department appointment, but the president has confidence she can rebrand the United States.

Hughes appeared to be one of the pilgrims satirized by Mark Twain in his 1869 book, "Innocents Abroad," about his trip on "The Grand Holy Land Pleasure Excursion." "None of us had ever been anywhere before; we all hailed from the interior; travel was a wild novelty to us ... We always took care to make it understood that we were Americans -- Americans!"

"...Many people around the world do not understand the important role that faith plays in Americans' lives," she said. When an Egyptian opposition leader inquired why President Bush mentions God in his speeches, she asked him "whether he was aware that previous American presidents have also cited God, and that our Constitution cites 'one nation under God.' He said, 'Well, never mind.'"


"Never mind" indeed.

Well, after all, it was her first trip into the land of the Saracen, and
he was probably more familiar with OUR Constitution than she was, but he knew she was full of ... fervor .. perhaps trying her best to make "blonde jokes" universal.

You see, Ms Karen, not only doesn't it say that in the Constituion, the word "God" does not appear in the Constitution at all, but then it seems as if knowing fuck all about the Constitution (and being a buddy or a mommy to Georgie Boy) seems to be a prerequisite for employment in the Bushwah admin...

"Under God" was added to the pledge of allegiance in 1954 and it was dreadful -- it broke the sense of unity the original pledge was intended to strengthen -- it was a verbally divisive element that added to the systematic shredding of our national identity into GOOD Americans and BAD Americans. (Let's not forget Joe McCarthy -- Charlie McCarthy's silver-tongued little brother -- America's most prominent drug addict and surrealist writer of the ever-amorphous list of Communists in the State Department -- until the emergence of William Seward Burroughs as a literary light. Of course, America's favorite Mad Dog and prover of Blonde Jokes -- Ann Coulter -- has been assiduously trying to resurrect and refurbish his image. )

Until then, the pledge (and the pledge itself hadn't been around all that long either*) concluded with this beautifully metered statement:

"One nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all..."

but the scaredy cats (ain't it innaresting how, for so many years, the big rich guys take our money to fight the things they're afraid of -- and most of those things involve becoming less rich -- with precious little attention to spending our money for the things to which we aspire) had to put a religious reference in there to thumb nose at the godless Communists (who wanted all the rich people to share their stuff) and it broke the rhythm like so:

"One nation, under God, with liberty and justice for all."

Say it -- feel it roll -- it turned the simple statement into committee-ized crap. The insertion of the word "God" into the Flag pledge turned "indivisible" and "liberty and justice for all" into afterthoughts.

"One nation, under God, blibbity blabbity bloop."

You'd think someone -- even one of Bush's mommy-babes -- would know something about our history and our Constitution, wouldn't you?

*It was written in the 1890's and incorporated as official in the 1920's -- here's the history.



This sent by friends who really know how to cheer a fellow up:

George Bush in Hell

by David Michael Green

You would not want to be George W. Bush right now.

Not that you ever would anyhow, but especially not now. Indeed, there are indications that not even George W. Bush wants to be George W. Bush right now.

That second term in office, the one that just a year or two ago seemed so precious that he was willing to launch a war just to obtain it, now feels like a life sentence. Plans for four years spending political capital now look a lot more like endless months of capital punishment....

The article then goes on to enumerate many of the reasons we all know, and more than a few we may not have known already. Then it concludes:

...History, it would seem, all too rarely delivers justice. The privileged few go out of this life richer than they came into it, while the poor often leave even poorer, not to mention sooner. Those who commit unspeakable crimes sometimes become presidents or prime ministers, while those who dare speak truthfully of those deeds are crushed owing to the threat posed by their honesty.

Even more rare yet are the cases in which history delivers justice with a deliciously deserved irony. But George Bush has provided us with just such a case. And the very delicious irony is that he is now being undone by a cynical choice he himself made to go to war in Iraq with other people's blood and other people's treasure, for the purpose of enhancing his tenuous self-esteem and the power of his presidency.

Goodbye, George. May you know precisely the rest and precisely the peace someone who would do such a thing deserves.

David Michael Green is a professor of political science at Hofstra University in New York. Email:


Houston - DeLay blames 'fanatic' DA for indictment

"I have done nothing wrong ... I am innocent," DeLay told a Capitol Hill news conference in which he repeatedly criticized the prosecutor, Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle. DeLay called Earle a "unabashed partisan zealot," and "fanatic," and described the charges as "one of the weakest and most baseless indictments in American history."

It's NEVER their fault. It's ALWAYS someone else conspiring against them, someone who hates America, a fanatic.

This smug former professional roach-killer who married rich a couple of times until he found one who would tolerate him just can't see how anyone might jump at an opportunity to indict someone who swaggers around with the nickname of "THE HAMMER."

They're all so fucking tough until someone finds proof, then it's all whining and crying and turning against each other.

Kind of makes you nostalgic for a stand-up sociopath like G. Gordon Liddy.

Here's what they say he did:

In the name and by authority of the state of Texas: the Grand Jury of the county of Travis, state of Texas, duly selected, organized, sworn, and charged as such at the April term, A.D., 2005, of the 147th Judicial District Court of said county, in said court at said term, upon their oaths do present that on or about the thirteenth day of September, A.D., 2002, in the County of Travis and State of Texas,

John Dominick Colyandro,
James Walter Ellis, and
Thomas Dale DeLay,

the defendants herein, with the intent that a felony be committed, did enter into an agreement with one or more of each other or with a general purpose political committee known as Texans for a Republican Majority PAC that one or more of them would engage in conduct that would constitute the offense of knowingly making a political contribution in violation of Subchapter D of Chapter 253 of the Texas Election Code, a violation of Sections 253.003 and 253.094 and 253.104 of the Election Code, in that said contribution was made directly to the Republican National Committee, a political party, during a period beginning sixty days before the date of a general election for state and county officers and continuing through the date of the election, and indirectly to candidates for the Texas House of Representatives, and that said contribution included a prohibited political contribution by a corporation; and that John Dominick Colyandro, and James Walter Ellis, and Texans for a Republican Majority PAC did perform overt acts in pursuance of the agreement, to wit:

The rest is here:


Lots of fun here watching Georgie fall through the bubbles --

you can click on his body and make him bounce even more.



The Ostroy Report: AL Gore Could be Our Next President

Is former vice-president Al Gore gearing up for another run at the White House? ...

He's got a real shot here folks. For one thing, he's been against the Iraq war from the get-go. Hillary Clinton voted for it, as did Senators Joe Biden (D-DE) and former 2004 presidential candidate John Kerry (D-MA)...

Additionally, Gore is Mr. Environment, and has been preaching the global warming gospel for 20+ years... A growing chorus of scientists believe the recent frequency of strong Category 4 and 5 hurricanes such as Katrina and Rita may be linked to global warming. They believe that rising global temperatures warm the oceans, which in turn fuel hurricanes and intensify their power. On this issue, Gore just might have a groundswell of very interested listeners for a change.

That would be great -- and if he's learned how to stop being an overbearing know-it-all asshole who alienates everyone who has ever met him, he could be a great president. Run with Wesley Clark who actually knows how to get military things done.



Just for the record:

I posted this nearly a year ago:

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

An intuitive prediction

... based on no supportable information but my own sense of nightmare:

If Bush loses, he'll be back on the sauce within the year.

If Bush wins, he'll be back on the sauce within the year.

Assuming, of course, he isn't already.


And according to some sleazy but often accurate sources ...

he's back on the sauce again.

Wasn't hard to predict -- about as easy and depressing as seeing that the Iraq adventure would end badly for everyone. Because he's a punk ass infant and he needs his bottle and he's too stupid to see the people telling him what to do are going to let him stand out there all alone, not even knowing what the approaching mob is screaming about as they cut off his balls and leave him standing there, holding the empty bag.

At THAT point, I may feel sorry for him. But not until he's publicly castrated -- now, I still feel very sorry for us.



What the fuck is a POMBO? An African antelope, sort of like a dik-dik? A destructive storm? Whatever it is, it's bad stuff

No Arctic oil drilling? How about selling parks? / Pombo hopes threat will boost bid to tap refuge's resources

POMBO -- he's that central-African dictator, right, the one who killed and ate all his opponents?

Nope -- he's a pissant wannabe, a jerkoff congressman from an exurban cowtown called Tracy that in recent years has grown and grown and grown (like a cancer) in the California midlands, and who is one of the new breed who thinks that getting voted in means he and his pals own the country.

Check it out:

Washington -- House Resources chairman Richard Pombo is circulating a draft of a bill that would sell 15 national parks and require the National Park Service to raise millions of dollars by selling the naming rights to visitors' centers and trails.

Pombo's spokesman said the proposal, written by Pombo's House Resources Committee staff, is intended only to influence lawmakers to support an item in the budget bill that would permit oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

If drilling continues to be banned in the refuge, Pombo's staff argued, the government would have to sell parks as well as advertising space on park buses, trams and ferries to reach the level of revenues expected from oil leases sales in the Alaskan refuge.

OKAY? There's the sociopathic bullshit level -- "have to do it to reach the level of revenues EXPECTED from oil leases in ANWR."

Hey, dipshit -- just because you EXPECT that drilling for oil in a pristine preserve will make you a bunch of money, guess what?

1. You never had it and ain't gonna get it.

2. You're so slavering coming all over yourself with greed you're not even making a front for drilling in ANWR being about anything but money.

3. No one cares what you EXPECT. You may expect Gwyneth Paltrow to show up at your office and give you a blowjob, but guess what?

4. What you can really expect is to lose the next election, because you're just a disposable condom covering the diseased Dick of the Cheney-Bush-Mohammed Atta axis of oil vampires, and once they've used you to lubricate the rape, you're as replaceable as a used drill bit.

---Oh do people really think Mohammed Atta was doing it for reasons of religious fervor and not for the same pig-in-the-trough reasons as the rest? Get a brain. If Bush et al made it clear that it was ONLY about WHO gets the loot, we, who all know it won't be us, would have to say, "Well fuck him and his privileged Little Lord Fauntleroy bullshit."

So they decided it would be more useful to say it's a religious holy war. Get all the people who believe in invisible friends who strike down anyone who laughs at them into the fray.

Meanwhile, back in Pombo-land

"The drums! It's the DRUMS!! THey say: 'Drill for oil! Make money! Sell the country to the people who can make me rich! It's the drums that make me do it.' "

Right, those old Gene Krupa 78's pushed him over the edge.

Summing it up -- DICK POMBO is the clear winner of this week's award for "MOST BLATANT WASTE OF HUMAN PROTOPLASM"



Another Friday cat .. .waiting for the floodwaters to go down.


Chloe her own self


Chloe and Cosmo on a Friday Afternoon


Why was this British journalist refused permission to enter the United States this week?

Why is it that we and America wish civil war on Iraq

by Robert Fisk -- September 15, 2005 -- published in The Independent, UK

--There will not be a civil war in Iraq. There never has been a civil war in Iraq. In 1920, Lloyd George warned of civil war in Iraq if the British Army left. Just as the Americans now threaten the Iraqis with civil war if they leave. As early as 2003, American spokesmen warned that there would be civil war if US forces left.

What the imperial, colonial powers will not learn - let us use their real names - and cannot learn, is that Iraq is not a sectarian state but a tribal nation. Iraqi men and women marry by religion rather than by affiliation.

A year ago, I sat by a doctor whose brother had just been killed by gunmen, killers who, I had no doubt, were Shias enraged that the brother had objected to the building of a Shia mosque at the end of his road. I turned to the brother at the funeral lunch and asked if there would be a civil war in Iraq.

"Why do you and the Americans want us to have a civil war?" he asked. "I am a Sunni married to a Shia woman. "Do you want me to kill my wife?"

Robert Fisk -- barred from entering the US
this past Tuesday, September 20, 2005, as reported in The Free New Mexican:

U.S. immigration officials refused Tuesday to allow Robert Fisk, longtime Middle East correspondent for the London newspaper, The Independent, to board a plane from Toronto to Denver. Fisk was on his way to Santa Fe for a sold-out appearance in the Lannan Foundation’s readings-and-conversations series Wednesday night.

According to Christie Mazuera Davis, a Lannan program officer, Fisk was told that his papers were not in order.



Bush Says U.S. Must Not Retreat on Iraq


September 22,2005 | WASHINGTON -- Two days before a major anti-war demonstration, President Bush said Thursday that withdrawing American forces from Iraq would make the world more dangerous and allow terrorists "to claim an historic victory over the United States."

So to everyone who everyone who simplified the policies of the simpleton in the Oval office as "a pissing contest," 'dick-measuring," etc were right.

Why, he asks, do we need to stay the doomed course in Iraq? So THEY can't have bragging rights.

Arrogant infantile asshole(s) leading us into the Valley of Death.



Charles Perez asks a very cogent question on THE FULCRUM.

Or it would be cogent if he (and we) were talking about actual human beings.

He asks, referring to Bush and his Masters:

"What have they really learned?"

To which I reply, cynically:

"But you have to at least admit there was SOMETHING you didn't know, before, to learn anything."

What I would HOPE they've learned is the old saying:

"Be careful the asses you kick on the way up -- they're the same ones you'll have to kiss on the way down."

And I hope they learn it the hardest way possible.


The question of whether there is a God

A man asked Mr. K. whether there is a God.

Mr. K. said: “I advise you to consider whether, depending on the answer, your behavior would change.

If it would not change, then we can drop the question.

If it would change, then I can at least be of help to the extent that I can say, you have already decided: you need a God.”

Bertolt Brecht, from Stories of Mr. Keuner, 1956


Philly Priests Cleared in Sex Abuse Case

Oh what ANOTHER fucking amazing surprise (see below).

I grew up in Philly learning to make my flat feet run as fast as I could, chased by Sacred Heart Altar Boys yelling "Get the JEW! Fadda O'Ryan sez you killed Christ! Get him!"

So I respectfully suggest, in lieu of an ability to press charges because of statute of limitations, we hang all the priests and burn all the churches to the ground.

(ALL priests -- as in ALL Jews. What? Some of them are innocent of that crime? Oh me oh my, that's too bad. Do as you would have done to you, Fadda O'Ryan, et al. Your raging little sociopaths were my first experience of the community acting on a faith-based initiative.)


Tax Breaks for Katrina May Aid Rich More




The FBI is joining the Bush administration’s War on Porn. And it’s looking for a few good agents.

Early last month, the bureau’s Washington Field Office began recruiting for a new anti-obscenity squad. Attached to the job posting was a July 29 Electronic Communication from FBI headquarters to all 56 field offices, describing the initiative as “one of the top priorities” of Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales and, by extension, of “the Director.” That would be FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III....

The new squad will divert eight agents, a supervisor and assorted support staff to gather evidence against “manufacturers and purveyors” of pornography — not the kind exploiting children, but the kind that depicts, and is marketed to, consenting adults.

“I guess this means we’ve won the war on terror,” said one exasperated FBI agent, speaking on the condition of anonymity because poking fun at headquarters is not regarded as career-enhancing. “We must not need any more resources for espionage.”

Just a matter of which is more important:

1 -- Stopping religious fanatics from whacking thousands of American civilians on any given day?


2 -- Letting religious fanatics stop thousands of wankers taking their daily internet break?

Obviously, they consider sticky fingers more threatening to the Republic.

I guess, when you're watching your entire agenda of irrational punishment and plunder go down the toilet like used kleenex because the putative leader is recognized domestically and internationally as a jerkoff, you might be more aversely sensitive on the subject.



I have a question about funding the rebuilding of the gulf states including New Orleans

How much did it cost for Bush's masters to fly him and the tech crews and the lights and sound and camo cloth they used to cover the less sightly parts of the background, and to set up the generators along his route to provide light for an hour before and half an hour after he read his lines?

How much would it have cost if he'd given the address from the White House studio?

My guess is the location shoot was multiple millions of dollars more.

Is it clear yet? If Bush knew how to say one honest thing it would be this:

"Hi. I'm not a real president but I play one on TV."

(ed note: and poorly, too, I might add.)


Tropical Storm RITA -- headed straight for Houston

Now we're talking real honest-to-God "If it isn't one thing, it's another" territory:

Attention people in the Astrodome: will the New Orleans refugee named JONAH please leave the building?


Good Grief

Published: September 19, 2005

The president is Lucy, and he's holding a football. We're Charlie Brown.

---the rest of the article is excellent and worth reading, but in this case, if you only read the lead, you know the whole story.

In an eerily lit, nationally televised appearance outside the historic St. Louis Cathedral in New Orleans, President Bush promised the world to the Gulf Coast residents whose lives were upended by Hurricane Katrina...

"Throughout the area hit by the hurricane," said Mr. Bush, "we will do what it takes, we will stay as long as it takes to help citizens rebuild their communities and their lives."

The country has put its faith in Mr. Bush many times before, and come up empty. It may be cynical, but my guess is that if we believe him again this time, we're going to end up on our collective keisters, just like Charlie Brown, who could never stop himself from kicking mightily at empty space, which was all that was left each time Lucy snatched the ball away...

But Mr. Bush's new post-Katrina persona defies belief. The same man .. now suddenly emerges from the larva of his ineptitude to present himself as - well, nothing short of enlightened.

Not only was he proposing a Gulf Coast Marshall Plan, but he was declaring, in words that made his conservative followers gasp, that poverty in the U.S. "has roots in a history of racial discrimination which cut off generations from the opportunity of America."

If you were listening to the radio, you might have thought you were hearing the ghost of Lyndon Johnson. "We have a duty to confront this poverty with bold action," said Mr. Bush.

He was being Lucy again, enticing us with the football...

You can believe that he's suddenly worried about poor people if you want to. What is more likely is that his reference to racism and poverty was just another opportunistic Karl Rove moment, never to be acted upon.

Charlie Brown's sister, Sally, once asked how often someone could be fooled with the same trick. She answered her own question: "Pretty often, huh?"

And all I can say is that old line: OH LUCY -- YOU'RE IN TROUBLE NOW."

Or as they say in the world of stage sets and lighting and camera angles and imitation reality:

"Be careful the asses you kick on the way up -- they're the same ones you have to kiss on the way down."

Pucker up, Monkey Boy.


Clinton launches withering attack on Bush on Iraq, Katrina, budget

This is why Bill Clinton DESERVED to get blow jobs -- it's called backbone and it's called CHARACTER, the thing Little Georgie W's backstreet boy convinced him to tell the American public that Bill DIDN'T have and that W DID

If being president is a Bully Pulpit, how much better does being a former president work? W, on the other hand, only got part of the message -- thought they told him being president meant you were supposed to be a bully, something he knew how to do with his daddy's money.


In a just world congress would have set up a Dept of BJ (DoBJ -- cabinet level?)) with a budget of, oh, maybe $5 million a year or so to make sure there was a plentiful supply of highly qualified women. (Later, no doubt, an Equal Opportunity lawsuit would make sure there were also qualified men for those who prefer that. And handjobs and footjobs, and etc.)

If Al Gore was able to stand up like this, he would have been president, despite being despised by everyone who ever met him.

From Yahoo News

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Former US president Bill Clinton sharply criticised George W. Bush for the Iraq War and the handling of Hurricane Katrina, and voiced alarm at the swelling US budget deficit.

Breaking with tradition under which US presidents mute criticisms of their successors, Clinton said the Bush administration had decided to invade Iraq "virtually alone and before UN inspections were completed, with no real urgency, no evidence that there were weapons of mass destruction."

The Iraq war diverted US attention from the war on terrorism "and undermined the support that we might have had," Bush said in an interview with an ABC's "This Week" programme.

Clinton said there had been a "heroic but so far unsuccessful" effort to put together a constitution that would be universally supported in Iraq.

The US strategy of trying to develop the Iraqi military and police so that they can cope without US support "I think is the best strategy. The problem is we may not have, in the short run, enough troops to do that," said Clinton.

On Hurricane Katrina, Clinton faulted the authorities' failure to evacuate New Orleans ahead of the storm's strike on August 29.

People with cars were able to heed the evacuation order, but many of those who were poor, disabled or elderly were left behind.

"If we really wanted to do it right, we would have had lots of buses lined up to take them out," Clinton said.

He agreed that some responsibility for this lay with the local and state authorities, but pointed the finger, without naming him, at the former director of the FEMA boss Michael Brown quit in response to criticism of his handling of the Katrina disaster. He was viewed as a political appointee with no experience of disaster management or dealing with government officials.

"When James Lee Witt ran FEMA, because he had been both a local official and a federal official, he was always there early, and we always thought about that," Clinton said, referring to FEMA's head during his 1993-2001 presidency.

"But both of us came out of environments with a disproportionate number of poor people."

On the US budget, Clinton warned that the federal deficit may be coming untenable, driven by foreign wars, the post-hurricane recovery programme and tax cuts that benefitted just the richest one percent of the US population, himself included.

"What Americans need to understand is that ... every single day of the year, our government goes into the market and borrows money from other countries to finance Iraq, Afghanistan, Katrina, and our tax cuts," he said.

"We have never done this before. Never in the history of our republic have we ever financed a conflict, military conflict, by borrowing money from somewhere else."

Clinton added: "We depend on Japan, China, the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, and Korea primarily to basically loan us money every day of the year to cover my tax cut and these conflicts and Katrina. I don't think it makes any sense."



Question: Is it possible to tell what race the Medical Doctors were who used these 19th and 20th century diagnoses?

"Drapetomania: irrational and pathological desire of slaves to run away.

"Dysarthesia Aethiopica: rascality


A little clear, thoughtful insight to our situation

Please stop fetishising integration.
Equality is what we really need

by Gary Younge in the Guardian, Monday, September 19, 2005

Where race is concerned there are, it seems, some words that just don't go together. No matter how many young drunken white men beat each other up over the weekend, there is no such thing as white-on-white crime. No matter how many non-white people flee inner-city neighbourhoods for better schools and services, there is no such thing as "black flight". And no matter how bitter their ethnic divides, white people never engage in "tribal conflict".

And so it is that it seems to make no difference how segregated their lives, white people rarely ever seem to live in ghettoes. When a group of white people gather, they call it a country club, boardroom or - for most of the last century - House of Commons. But when non-white people reach a critical mass in any area, they always hit the G-spot - the point at which policymakers scream.

--- it goes on into specifics and is important. Many white folk will not even understand it. Because, as the mentor of my youth would say, explaining extra-environmental reality, "I don't know who discovered water, but it sure as hell wasn't a fish." Mr. Young is looking clearly at our whites-only pond. Read on here:



All ice -- amazing .. winter in Harbin, China


All ice -- Winter in Harbin, China


Whistling wind in Harbin, 2003


R Todd King: China Photos 2005 - Harbin Winter Ice Sculptures

This year's Ice Sculptures -- think about it -- there are people who have been spending all their spare their time doing THIS...

and two years ago, they were doing THIS

It's cold enough so it lasts and lasts and lasts...

Does it make you think about what you were doing with your spare time? -- Makes ME think about it.


Cheney to find out what's behind the tight smiles -- surgery next week

Vice President Dick Cheney will undergo an elective surgery next weekend to treat an aneurysm in an artery behind his right knee. The condition, discovered earlier this year during a routine checkup, needs to be treated "as to not become a problem over time," Steve Schmidt, counselor to the vice president, said Friday.

"The procedure will be performed under local anesthetic," Schmidt said. "It will take place next weekend. It will involve a short hospital stay. The vice president will return to work shortly thereafter..."

An aneurysm is a ballooning weak spot in an artery that, as blood pounds through, can eventually burst if left untreated.

Those in the knee, popliteal aneurysms, act a little differently. They're less likely to burst than are aneurysms in other parts of the body. But blood clots can form in the weakened artery that can break off and cause a stroke, or block circulation in the leg.

It should go simply and smoothly, BUT if plans are afoot to do a Spiro Agnew on him (i.e., we want the prez the hell out of there because he's fucking up our good thing, but we can't let this bozo take over), we should all say goodbye now. And wait for Bush to be removed -- pleasantly or not.

(Oh come on -- Rehnquist died conveniently enough to distract the press from the disintegration of both Iraq and Bush's poll numbers. And if you recall, Ronnie's plug got pulled just in time to do a 2-week death-fest that just happened to cover up another shitstorm -- oh, you think I'm paranoid? All just coincidental? Right. And yet 'realists' actually believe the Democrats and the 'liberals' -- of which there are precious few in the Democratic party -- are all conspiring to destroy America for ... for what reason was that?)


The one good thing to come out of the Roberts/Chief Justice Hearings

In the very beginning, Teddy Kennedy said what I wanted to hear SOMEONE on the WHITE GUILT panel say when Clarence (Uncle) Thomas made his resoundingly bullshit plea, coached to the last intonation by Fred Thompson (back from pretending to be a District Attorney on Law & Order to do it again, teach some fellow how to pretend to be a Supreme Court judge.)

We all remember that Judge Thomas said:

"This is a high-tech lynching."

And I thought -- no Judge Thomas

This isn't a lynching -- it's a job interview

and you're not Emmett Till

and if you don't get the job, you go back to your $80,000 a year Federal-judge-for-life job.

But you knew -- or Fred Thompson knew -- there wasn't a white man on the panel with the consciousness and balls to throw down on a black man, even though everyone knew you got where you were by being Ronnie Reagan's House Nigger, and tugged your forelock and shuffled yore feet and yassir'd his people for years to finally convince them you could be trusted to have no natural sense of rhythm and no natural backbone, but only an appropriately simple one provided by Massa Ronnie and his minions.

But this time around, Teddy Kennedy said it in his opening statement -- "This is a job interview, so refusing to answer is not going to get you the job.

Of course, he said it to the wrong candidate, and of course he was wrong -- Roberts smiled and smiled and smiled and refused to answer and he's going to get the job -- but at least it got said only a dozen or so years too late.


Five People George W. Bush Should Meet in Heaven

The inimitable Ambidextrous directs us to this blog by Robert Smith on the Huffington Post.

I always thought that book, the one about the 5 people, was going to be such a pile of pretentious overbearing William Bennett-esque hypocritical horseshit, I never opened it, though I tended a bookstore for many months and it was on the shelf across from my perch behind the cash register.

I still haven't, nor have I changed my mind -- but for those people who create an afterlife in hope of reward (and Monkey Boy is definitely one of them) this would seem to be some of the appropriate elements of one that also includes Justice:

Granted, some of these folks will be representative of an entire class, sort of like a heavenly version of a class action suit. As Bush meets these people, I’d like Laura to be there to explain how a “good man” is compatible with policies or actions related to these people.

#1. A representative of the 5 million people who have fallen into poverty during Bush’s first five years as president. As Bush meets this person, it should be explained to him that people who are just above poverty level live paycheck to paycheck. Even a small rise in their cost of living can sink them financially. So these pennies-on-the-dollar raises in sales tax or health insurance or gas that have a moderate effect on wealthier people create a financial disaster for people in this class.

#2. A floating corpse from New Orleans. Or maybe the elderly woman who died in her wheelchair.

#3. Karla Faye Tucker. Yes, she was a murderer and according to the laws of Texas, she was legally put to death. But I would like Bush to explain to her how a Christian could mock a fellow Christian just before executing her.

#4. John Kerry. A merciful God would stand these men opposite each other and judge their souls and their personal merit. Let them be judged without spin, without slime, without lies. I don’t know how that comparison would turn out, but I like the idea of an irrefutable judgment day between the two of them.

#5. Casey Sheehan. He would represent the soldiers killed and the soldiers maimed in the unjustified war in Iraq. He would also represent all the mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, wives, and children of those soldiers. And he would represent the thousands of Iraqis killed or wounded and their families. And Laura could stand there and explain how George is a good man.

--- I know that "JUSTICE" may be the last thing most politicians would like to encounter, but this set of possibilities almost makes we want to believe in such an afterlife, just so I could be there to see it. But then, I'm not so sure JUSTICE is exactly what I would want to encounter either.



At a certain point, you have to notice something about the Bushes --

-- they may be really rich, but if they can't even convince their own children to respect authority or the law, why in hell should they expect any of us to do so?

"September 16,2005 | AUSTIN, Texas -- The youngest son of Florida Gov. Jeb Bush was arrested early Friday and charged with public intoxication and resisting arrest, law enforcement officials said.

John Ellis Bush, 21, was arrested by agents of the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission at 2:30 a.m. on a corner of Austin's Sixth Street bar district, said commission spokesman Roger Wade.

The nephew of President Bush was released on $2,500 bond for the resisting arrest charge, and on a personal recognizance bond for the public intoxication charge, officials said.

Wade said he had no further details about the charges.

Gov. Bush and his wife Columba appeared Friday evening at a museum reception in Miami.

'My son's doing fine. It's a private matter. We will support him. We're sad for him. But I'm not going to discuss it on the public square with 30 cameras,' the governor told reporters.

--- Actually, Jeb, since you chose to ride your family's Third Reich and Saddam Hussein money into our lives via public office, tamper with OUR elections, and make moralistic pronouncements designed to intimidate all of us, YOU DON'T HAVE ANY PRIVATE MATTERS.

It's not the first time Florida's first family has experienced legal problems with one of their children.

Noelle Bush, the governor's daughter, was arrested in January 2002 and accused of trying to pass a fraudulent prescription at a pharmacy to obtain the anti-anxiety drug Xanax. She completed a drug rehabilitation program in August 2003 and a judge dismissed the drug charges against her."

As I said -- if he can't even teach his own children to obey the law, well, fuck him. Let him start his bullshit at home, and when that works, well then, give us all a shout.


Texas county bans parking near Bush ranch

WACO, Texas (AP) -- Two weeks after Cindy Sheehan left her anti-war campsite by the road leading to President Bush's ranch, county commissioners have banned parking along 23 miles of roads in the area.

Before the 4-1 vote Tuesday, McLennan County Commissioner Ray Meadows said about 80 residents had complained of blocked roads, loud music and public health and safety concerns during the 26-day protest near Bush's ranch outside Crawford, about 20 miles west of Waco.

"It's not a First Amendment issue. It's a safety issue," Meadows said, adding that "no parking" signs could be put up this week.

Sure it is -- doesn't matter anyway -- after last night's $200 billion "don't hit me" speech, the real danger to Bush might be coming from members of the Republican Caucus who are guests at the ranch.


"Man Breaks 'Couch Potato' Record

September 16,2005 | NEW YORK -- Couch potato, thy name is Suresh. Suresh Joachim broke the Guinness world record for the longest time spent watching TV. He finished Friday with 69 hours and 48 minutes.

--First of all, big deal -- that's not that long

Joachim did his TV viewing in the lobby of WABC-TV as part of the 'Guinness World Record Breaker Week' on the syndicated 'Live With Regis and Kelly.'

Sitting on a brown leather couch, he watched nothing but ABC shows.

--- ok, well that could be really tough

Rules for the couch potato honor, as stipulated by Guinness, allow for a 5-minute break every hour and a 15-minute break every 8 hours. The viewer must otherwise be constantly looking at the screen.

The hardest part, Joachim said on 'Regis and Kelly,' was 'I couldn't watch the people' -- the many, waving passers-by on the street outside the ABC studio.

---Regis and Kelly? oh wow, this guy is really tough.

Joachim, who lives in Toronto but hails from Sri Lanka, now holds more than 16 Guinness records, including the longest duration balancing on one foot (76 hours, 40 minutes) and bowling for 100 hours. He does it, he says, to raise awareness of suffering children."

---A Canadian? We're going to let a Canadian hold the Couch Potato Record? OK, his motives are honorable, but -- a Canadian is the mostest bestest Couch Potato in the World? Not acceptable.


'I'm Not an Ideologue,' Roberts Tells Senate Panel, "But then, I'm also not being candid or fully truthful."

"John G. Roberts Jr. yesterday summed up his Senate hearings to become the nation's 17th chief justice by declaring, "I'm not an ideologue," brushing aside his early years in the trenches of the conservative Reagan revolution as he portrayed himself as a lawyer and judge devoid of social agendas."

The gambler's 'tell' *

The thing that bothers me is that he often sets his eyebrows into that same "don't hit me" squinch that Dubya does, and in my experience that's a "tell" when there's a covert situation going on, something close to the core that the person does not want anyone to see, touch, feel, or challenge. Someone might want to fast forward through the hearings and note what was being asked when the magickal eyebrow mojo was raised.

Add to that the almost total suppression of emotion behind nearly complete facial armoring and it says clearly there's a lot going on with this fellow he does not want people to know. Perhaps "I'm not a District Attorney but I play one on Law & Order" Senator-turned-TV actor Fred Thompson overcoached him.

Open and Honest are Liabilities?

Everyone says Judge Bork got bounced because he was too open. Perhaps. But it was WHAT HE SAID when he was being candid that was PURE LOONEY TUNES that did it. It was not the fact of speaking honestly, but like The Son of Sam Killer or Charles Manson, both of whom also spoke honestly also, it was what he said that chilled the blood of those who didn't see things the same way.

Pure moralistic crap about how even if adults perused sexually-oriented material in privacy, where no children could see it or even know it was there, it was still a disease that would infect society from the pure fact of its nature.

So what he was really saying was that HE couldn't handle sexually-oriented material without fear of running amok. Of course, he projected that outward to imply that THEY, the inferior people, couldn't handle it without pounding drums and raping white women.

Oh God I surely do miss Barbara Jordan the last politican for whom I would have GLADLY voted to be president

To Barbara Jordan, who understood EXACTLY what he was TRYING to suggest, what he was saying was that he didn't understand the Bill of Rights, and she-- god rest her soul and how we miss her -- had no problem giving him a public spanking along with an introductory lesson on what the First Amendment means.

Oh, the fact that Judge Bork was the only exec in the justice department willing to stay in and go along with Richard Nixon to fire Archibald Cox and try to stop the investigation into the Watergate mess didn't help the perception of his integrity level. Or maybe it was the bad beard.

All I know is that Mr.Clean is being covert and careful.

Big surprise for someone, but who? Maybe the Right wingers

What does it mean? For all I know, it means he'll turn out like David Souter or Earl Warren and actually stand tall and tough for the constitution as it is and not as Pat Robertson and Jerry Fallwell would like it to be, and go down as one more Joker popping up in the deck as the Right Wing once again tries to deal from a stacked deck.

Time will tell.

* "It was his gambler's tell. When the owner of that expensive but cheap suit was lying, he'd click click click click his flawed diamond against the buttons of his suit jacket."
From Sock by Penn Jillette



An open post to the guy who leaves supposed "comments" which are actually ads for his clients' various products:

Fuck you, sleazebag -- you want to advertise? Pay for it. I notice you not only don't allow comments on your sites, you don't even provide an email address for people to say what they think to you.

SO, simply put: FUCK YOU, SLEAZEBAG!

I would respectfully suggest that you eat shit and die, if it's not too much trouble. No way in hell I or anyone I know will have anything to do with your clients' products, other than to tell people they're being represented by a thief and a conman.

I bet you told them what a clever way this was to advertise without charge. Right. It's also a clever way for us to make a list of companies to boycott -- which I will publish here from time to time.


Mice Infected With Bubonic Plague Missing

Whoa, hold on -- I had them here a minute ago, lemme look ... my keys, change, my wallet, hankie ... damn!

September 15,2005 | NEWARK, N.J. -- Three mice infected with the bacteria responsible for bubonic plague apparently disappeared from a laboratory about two weeks ago, and authorities launched a search though health experts said there was scant public risk.

The mice were unaccounted-for at the Public Health Research Institute, which is on the campus of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and conducts bioterrorism research for the federal government.

Federal official said the mice may never be accounted for. Among other things, the rodents may have been stolen, eaten by other lab animals or just misplaced in a paperwork error.



The good news is ... I was wrong

Oh what a prematurely pessimistic asshole I am --


Bush & Co backed down, saying, well, ok, no one HAS to leave... we won't force anyone to leave -- we'll just go up and tell them they're going against an order...

I know I said I thought the spirit that has survived all this time was going to be dispersed (and not rebuilt) once the last holdouts were forced out of the city.

OF COURSE and how stupid of me not to have understood --
when you have a chickenshit, craven snivelling, please - don't - hit - me president whose only strength is to follow what the people who bought him told him to do ... and they realize they either back down or shoot survivors,. of course the indomitable ones, the ones who decided to stay, the ones who are like the occult masters who have and guard the POWER, the ones who keep the transmission of spirit alive: the indomitable ones -- they win.

Jean Lafitte is alive and well, Dr. John is alive and well, and since the French Quarter is more or less intact, rebuilding will start from there.

Viva New Orleans!
Viva Daffy Duck!
Viva Professor Longhair!
Viva Dr. John!
Viva Doug Kershaw!
Viva the drug taking, booze sloshing, gender-confusing, Jazz-loving saints of the kitchens, the super tough jambalaya of people who are the true Spirit of New Orleans.


And I ask your forgiveness for the sin against the holy spirit that is pessimism, the sin of assuming the Dark Power of the Sock Puppet might prevail.


Hi kids, can you say '"Jeezus H Christ on a cross --- YIKES!"

"Heavily armed paramilitary mercenaries from the Blackwater private security firm, infamous for their work in Iraq, are openly patrolling the streets of New Orleans. Some of the mercenaries say they have been 'deputized' by the Louisiana governor; indeed some are wearing gold Louisiana state law enforcement badges on their chests and Blackwater photo identification cards on their arms. They say they are on contract with the Department of Homeland Security and have been given the authority to use lethal force...

'This is a totally new thing to have guys like us working CONUS (Continental United States),' a heavily armed Blackwater mercenary told us as we stood on Bourbon Street in the French Quarter. 'We're much better equipped to deal with the situation in Iraq.'

Blackwater mercenaries are some of the most feared professional killers in the world and they are accustomed to operating without worry of legal consequences.
Their presence on the streets of New Orleans should be a cause for serious concern for the remaining residents of the city and raises alarming questions about why the government would allow men trained to kill with impunity in places like Iraq and Afghanistan to operate here. Some of the men now patrolling the streets of New Orleans returned from Iraq as recently as two weeks ago.

This report from Alternet via the sharp eye of Bad Attitudes

Read on ...


Bush re-visits the disaster scene -- shows he really cares.


Bush says that his administration is enlightened and colorblind...

... maybe colorblind insofar as seeing the red STOP signs nature give us, but ...

September 12,2005 | NEW ORLEANS -- President Bush denied Monday there was any racial component to people being left behind after Hurricane Katrina, despite suggestions from some critics that the response would have been quicker if so many of the victims hadn't been poor and black.

"The storm didn't discriminate and neither will the recovery effort," Bush said. "The rescue efforts were comprehensive. The recovery will be comprehensive."

Well, the storm DID discriminate, de facto against the poor, the sick, and the weak -- in fact -- oh what a coincidence! -- the very same people this Boosh administration has flipped the finger to since day one. Color doesn't matter -- the immortal question of unprincipled people is this: "DO WE BOMB IT OR KISS ITS ASS?"
Doesn't matter what color you are (and licking Condoleeza's boots when she cracks the whip doesn't make him a paragon of virtue) -- it's who can punk us and who can we punk?

But to be fair, perhaps he's not evil, just too stupid and stubborn and too bought and paid for to see it.

"It is difficult to get a man to understand something
when his salary depends upon his not understanding it."
Upton Sinclair

"I ran out of gas. I had a flat tire.
I didn't have enough money for cab fare.
My tux didn't come back from the cleaners.
An old friend came in from out of town.
Someone stole my car.
There was an earthquake! A terrible flood! Locusts!
It wasn't my fault, I swear to god!"
John Belushi as Jake Blues in The Blues Brothers Movie

"Each snowflake in an avalanche pleads not guilty."
Stanislaw Jerszy Lec



Good news for all the lost, homeless, and jobless people of New Orleans

Science & Technology at Scientific Pounding Pavement Generates Electricity When Wearing Novel Backpack

Scientists have developed a backpack that makes "power walking" a reality. Described today in the journal Science, the novel device translates the regular up and down movement of a walker's hips into electrical energy. The contraption could conceivably help provide power to soldiers, relief workers, scientists and others on remote trips.

---or just power the rich kids' ipods.

When out for a stroll, a person's hips move up and down between five and seven centimeters during every step. Larry Rome of the University of Pennsylvania and his colleagues exploited this trait to design their new "suspended load" backpack. The bag is based around a frame, which is connected to a wearer's hips, and as the frame gets raised and lowered, the backpack's contents move up and down. This pogo stick-like motion generates mechanical energy, which in turn is converted into electricity by an attached motor. In laboratory tests, volunteers wearing backpacks that weighed between 20 to 38 kilograms generated about 7.4 watts of power, an amount that could simultaneously operate multiple small electronic devices. (Equipment bags of target users typically weigh more than 36 kilograms, the scientists say, with up to 25 percent of the load attributed to replacement batteries.) Because the amount of mechanical energy correlates to how much weight is moved, a heavier pack or a faster gait both translated into greater power generation.

The scientists note that the backpack's outer metal frame, which weighs under six kilograms, slightly altered how subjects walked, making their strides more efficient. "Metabolically speaking, we've found this to be much cheaper than we anticipated," Rome remarks. "The energy you exert could be offset by carrying an extra snack, which is nothing compared to the weight of extra batteries." The team hopes to refine the design, which is currently a prototype, and perhaps someday remove the need to lug replacement batteries on long treks. --Sarah Graham

ISN'T IT GREAT?!? Now that the admin has excused the rebuilding contractors (i.e., Halliburton) from paying even minimum wage, just hire all those people to wear the backpack as they walk aimlessly around looking for food and family members -- just run a power cord out of their asses and have them pull wagons with rechargeable batteries on them... right?


By TomToles, courtesy of the San Francisco Chronicle -- he can say "hypocrisy" much more cleverly than I can.



Everything old is new again

"FEMA is widely viewed as a 'dumping ground,' a turkey farm, if you will, where large numbers of positions exist that can be conveniently and quietly filled by political appointment," the preliminary report said. "This has led to a situation where top officials, having little or no experience in disaster or emergency management, are creating substantial morale problems among careerists and professionals. "

George Herbert Walker Bush, 1992


First Gallup Poll on Hurricane Response Finds Americans Extremely at Odds

From Editor & Publisher

September 07, 2005

NEW YORK A CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll released this morning shows the country very divided over who is primarily to blame for the poor emergency response to the hurricane castastrophe on the Gulf Coast...

... 42% of respondents characterized Bush's response to the disaster as bad or terrible... 35% said it was good or great.

Federal agencies got exactly the same marks.
State and local officials fared only a little better--their response was described as bad or terrible by 35% and good or great by 37%."

Nothing like a clear consensus.


Exhibit A: Lying sack of shit # 4,372,900 -- "I haff no objections to people of the same sex being married." Campaign promise. That one ranks with his claims of seeing Russian tanks in the streets of Vienna as a boy in the 1950's.

Face it Ahnold -- no way in Hell we're changing the consitutional requirements for President for you. Sorry. Even if you weren't obviously showing yourself to be a thug and a posturer and a lying sack of shit like the Last Great Austrian Political Bully, it's too late -- your boy in the White House has systematically destroyed the Republican Party.

**By the way -- an aside -- I do not diss people who believe in this person or political philosophy or that -- only the ones who go public, who stand up and lie to us and ask us to give them power over our lives. People may believe what they will, and I can be wrong. But for those who claim to care about our society, push out others who do the same, and then lie and steal and refuse to take responsibility, I feel -- in my private thoughts -- they deserve tar and feathers at the least, and, in a just world, lynch law.

Another note to Ahnold -- and a whole bunch of poseurs on all sides of the left-right/up-down spectrum -- when some rich asshole "wants to give back" to the society that was so kind, slandering, lying, and bullying your way to a position of power is NOT giving back, but just taking more. Giving back is things like 'Habitats for Humanity,' 'Meals on Wheels,' etc.



"Qualifications? We don' got to show you no stinkin' qualifications..."

From David Corn:

"In recent days, there have been calls for firing Michael Brown, the FEMA director--who got his job because he was a college chum of George W. Bush's 2000 campaign manager. ..

Let's consider an obvious comparison: Michael Brown and James Lee Witt, who Bill Clinton appointed head of FEMA.

... before joining FEMA, Brown was a lawyer for the International Arabian Horse Association.*

Before Witt was tapped as FEMA chief, he had served for four years as director of the Arkansas Office of Emergency Services.

Bush placed a crony--Brown was also an attorney for the Oklahoma Republican Party--in charge of FEMA (and permitted the agency's disaster work to be downgraded).

Clinton gave the job to a fellow with years of experience in disaster management and maintained a close connection to Witt and FEMA, which then had Cabinet-level status."

... FEMA's lack of readiness was predicted. By Witt, it turns out. In March 2004, he testified at a hearing conducted by two House subcommittees. The issue at hand was DHS's plan to consolidate--that is, reduce the number of--FEMA's regional and field offices. Witt's comments were all-too perceptive. He practically predicted the mess to come in New Orleans

Read the rest here.

* He was available for the FEMA job because he'd been asked to resign from the Arabian Horse Association.


Whoah -- before you do the quick canonization on the dead Chief Justice, let's hear from the Devil's Advocate

I remember these issues being raised when he was nominated in 1971, but I guess, compared to Nixon and his Mad Dog team of Constitution-killers, he looked good. And people were tired of the completely unqualified people Nixon kept nominating, so they went for the guy who was only MORALLY unqualified:

Alan Dershowitz: Telling the Truth About Chief Justice Rehnquist

Alan DershowitzMon Sep 5, 1:16 AM ET

My mother always told me that when a person dies, one should not say anything bad about him. My mother was wrong. History requires truth, not puffery or silence, especially about powerful governmental figures. And obituaries are a first draft of history. So here's the truth about Chief Justice Rehnquist you won't hear on Fox News or from politicians. Chief Justice William Rehnquist set back liberty, equality, and human rights perhaps more than any American judge of this generation. His rise to power speaks volumes about the current state of American values.

Let's begin at the beginning. Rehnquist bragged about being first in his class at Stanford Law School. Today Stanford is a great law school with a diverse student body, but in the late 1940s and early 1950s, it discriminated against Jews and other minorities, both in the admission of students and in the selection of faculty. Justice Stephen Breyer recalled an earlier period of Stanford's history: "When my father was at Stanford, he could not join any of the social organizations because he was Jewish, and those organizations, at that time, did not accept Jews." Rehnquist not only benefited in his class ranking from this discrimination; he was also part of that bigotry. When he was nominated to be an associate justice in 1971, I learned from several sources who had known him as a student that he had outraged Jewish classmates by goose-stepping and heil-Hitlering with brown-shirted friends in front of a dormitory that housed the school's few Jewish students. He also was infamous for telling racist and anti-Semitic jokes.

As a law clerk, Rehnquist wrote a memorandum for Justice Jackson while the court was considering several school desegregation cases, including Brown v. Board of Education. Rehnquist's memo, entitled "A Random Thought on the Segregation Cases," defended the separate-but-equal doctrine embodied in the 1896 Supreme Court case of Plessy v. Ferguson. Rehnquist concluded the Plessy "was right and should be reaffirmed." When questioned about the memos by the Senate Judiciary Committee in both 1971 and 1986, Rehnquist blamed his defense of segregation on the dead Justice, stating - under oath - that his memo was meant to reflect the views of Justice Jackson. But Justice Jackson voted in Brown, along with a unanimous Court, to strike down school segregation. According to historian Mark Tushnet, Justice Jackson's longtime legal secretary called Rehnquist's Senate testimony an attempt to "smear[] the reputation of a great justice." Rehnquist later admitted to defending Plessy in arguments with fellow law clerks. He did not acknowledge that he committed perjury in front of the Judiciary Committee to get his job.

The young Rehnquist began his legal career as a Republican functionary by obstructing African-American and Hispanic voting at Phoenix polling locations ("Operation Eagle Eye"). As RICHARD COHEN of The Washington Post wrote, "[H]e helped challenge the voting qualifications of Arizona blacks and Hispanics. He was entitled to do so. But even if he did not personally harass potential voters, as witnesses allege, he clearly was a brass-knuckle partisan, someone who would deny the ballot to fellow citizens for trivial political reasons -- and who made his selection on the basis of race or ethnicity." In a word, he started out his political career as a Republican thug.

Rehnquist later bought a home in Vermont with a restrictive covenant that barred sale of the property to ''any member of the Hebrew race."

Rehnquist's judicial philosophy was result-oriented, activist, and authoritarian. He sometimes moderated his views for prudential or pragmatic reasons, but his vote could almost always be predicted based on who the parties were, not what the legal issues happened to be. He generally opposed the rights of gays, women, blacks, aliens, and religious minorities. He was a friend of corporations, polluters, right wing Republicans, religious fundamentalists, homophobes, and other bigots.

Rehnquist served on the Supreme Court for thirty-three years and as chief justice for nineteen. Yet no opinion comes to mind which will be remembered as brilliant, innovative, or memorable. He will be remembered not for the quality of his opinions but rather for the outcomes decided by his votes, especially Bush v. Gore, in which he accepted an Equal Protection claim that was totally inconsistent with his prior views on that clause. He will also be remembered as a Chief Justice who fought for the independence and authority of the judiciary. This is his only positive contribution to an otherwise regressive career.

Within moments of Rehnquist's death, Fox News called and asked for my comments, presumably aware that I was a longtime critic of the late Chief Justice. After making several of these points to Alan Colmes (who was supposed to be interviewing me), Sean Hannity intruded, and when he didn't like my answers, he cut me off and terminated the interview. Only after I was off the air and could not respond did the attack against me begin, which is typical of Hannity's bullying ambush style. He is afraid to attack when there's someone there to respond. Since the interview, I've received dozens of e-mail hate messages, some of which are overtly anti-Semitic. One writer called me "a jew prick that takes it in the a** from ruth ginzburg [sic]." Another said I am "an ignorant socialist left-wing political hack .... You're like a little Heinrich Himmler! (even the resemblance is uncanny!)." Yet another informed me that I "personally make us all lament the defeat of the Nazis!" A more restrained viewer found me to be "a disgrace to the Law, to Harvard, and to humanity."

All this, for refusing to put a deceptive gloss on a man who made his career undermining the rights and liberties of American citizens.

My mother would want me to remain silent, but I think my father would have wanted me to tell the truth. My father was right.

Alan Dershowitz is a professor of law at Harvard. His latest book is The Case for Peace: How the Arab-Israeli Conflict Can Be Resolved (Wiley, 2005).


A giant asshole wasting the time and the precious talents of the firefighters on his left, all of whom are just hoping he'll spontaneously combust.


Why -- did you think I was exaggerating about what a self-serving sack of shit we have in this manchild sock puppet president?

From the Salt lake Tribune --

"Frustrated: Fire crews to hand out fliers for FEMA"

ATLANTA - Not long after some 1,000 firefighters sat down for eight hours of training, the whispering began: "What are we doing here?"

"...They've got people here who are search-and-rescue certified, paramedics, haz-mat certified," said a Texas firefighter. "We're sitting in here having a sexual-harassment class while there are still [victims] in Louisiana who haven't been contacted yet..."

The firefighter, who has encouraged his superiors back home not to send any more volunteers for now, declined to give his name because FEMA has warned them not to talk to reporters...

Firefighters say they want to brave the heat, the debris-littered roads, the poisonous cottonmouth snakes and fire ants and travel into pockets of Louisiana where many people have yet to receive emergency aid.

But as specific orders began arriving to the firefighters in Atlanta, a team of 50 Monday morning quickly was ushered onto a flight headed for Louisiana. The crew's first assignment: to stand beside President Bush as he tours devastated areas.

--To be fair, it's not Monkey Boy's fault these men and women were sidetracked to FEMA, even for a PR job, but as the photo above shows, taking them off the job (i.e., letting people die who might otherwise be saved) so he can look good make one wonder wistfully what happened to good old Texas Lynch Law.


Of Fruit Bat Bullies and Super Patriots

THE FLYING FOXES -- Giant fruit Bats

I spent much of Labor Day watching the giant fruit bats at the Oakland Zoo – they have two species there - -all males – 20 Malayan Fruit Bats (largest in the world with a 6-foot wingspan) and 11 Island Fruit Bats (not the largest, but with a 4-foot wingspan, pretty big).

The really big guys don’t seem to have any hierarchy problems, a bit of screech and tussle when they bump into each other, territorial, apparently, but it passes, and since the big enclosure in the Children’s Zoo was finished, very little problem with crowding or turf wars.

The Big Bats are Cool -- the second-stringers like to rape those weaker than they are

The not-so-big guys seem different, and have a lot of hierarchical issues, with ongoing sessions of the stronger raping the weaker, a social habit that caused some of the education department members to refer to the original, temporary (and smaller) enclosure as “The Prison.” Fruit Bats on the down-low.

On Labor Day, I watched as first one then another of the smaller bats attacked and raped the weak guy – pure “Schoolyard Bully Meets High Security Lifers in the Shower Room.” And the screaming of both the attackers and the attacked could be heard all over the area. It went on for hours. I’d seen individual sexual attacks among this species, but never this field day of “Let’s all get HIM.”

Political Internet -- the second-stringers like to rape those weaker than they are.

I had a sense of deja vous when returning home and checking up on various blogs. There were all the big-but-not-so-big bloggers either reporting on the rich and powerful attacking the victims and officials and police of the New Orleans area Katrina disaster, or pretending to be big guys and doing it themselves, savaging the poor and helpless.

A reformed whore gets moralistic

The first one I read was American Digest, the literate and vicious product of one Gerard van Der Leun, who spent the Vietnam years hiding out from the draft in San Francisco, editing and publishing a really good semi-porn, semi-hip, anti-establishment journal. That ran its course, but was part of him climbing up to the New York big time (on the basis of his considerable talents and the backs of those who helped him establish himself in SF) where he spent years kissing the ass of Bob Guccione, providing some slight literary editorial gloss on the Penthouse post-pubescent masturbation machine. He did a lot of other things, many quite excellent and not so easily dissed, but finally becoming his present version of himself -- a sort of shemale reincarnation of Kate Smith – can’t sing but has all the jingoistic flag-waving death-to-all-traitors parts down pat.

You call it TRIBES, but I call it RACIST venom.

That was bad enough, but then, this past Labor Day, he gushed and extolled the unbelievably Nazistic rantings of one Bill Whittle in a piece called TRIBES. (I’ll explain the very specific AND appropriate way in which I use the term “nazistic” later.) Whittle begins with the disclaimer that “this isn’t about race,” but of course it is – it’s just not about COLOR, as he proves with his endearing tale of having put a polyester jacket under the head of a black woman who’d been struck by a car and was bleeding. He doesn’t call it RACE, he calls it TRIBES, and HIS tribe doesn’t loot and rape and etc... HIS TRIBE is disciplined, believes in GOOD things...

And then he goes one (and on and on) talking about sheep and wolves and sheepdogs (of which he is one, guarding the flock, protecting them from wolves). He calls the wolves “sociopaths.” Well, aside from the fact that wolves only kill to eat, and that dogs, loveable though they may be, are sort of wolves on a leash who’ll kiss your ass, he seems to miss the point he makes, getting all tied up in the one he thinks he’s making about how HIS TRIBE is GOOD and THOSE TRIBES are BAD.

The point WE GET is that, disciplined and with emotions well subdued, he only becomes a ravening sociopath when given a uniform and a go-ahead from someone higher up the greased pole, and that’s so much better. In other words, a sociopath who needs permission.

Sneering, moralistic, vicious -- and, unfortunately, quite literate.

These aren’t the only two, but of all of them, I only read Van Der Leun because he’s so infuriatingly literate in his ranting. Although I do find somewhat bizarre the spectre of someone who made his bones purveying something not too far removed from kiddie porn for years telling us what God had in mind when HE designed prayer, and how to use that device. Something about reformed whores and their moralistic stances?

In this case, the big guys also rape the weak

And of course, when not acting through all the Big-Bat-Wannabe’s out there, our Fearless Sock Puppet in Chief has his minions spewing hatred of the Governor of Louisiana, the Mayor of New Orleans, the Police Chief of New Orleans, and the NOPD members who disappeared or committed suicide in the overwhelming presence of death and despair and pain and shock. He doesn’t dirty his hands with that, just diverts local resources to help him set up his photo-ops to show us what a swell guy he is.

And riding to the rescue -- OPRAH?

It took Oprah Winfrey’s power and ego and compassion and sense of a great story and actual (as distinct from publicly claimed) Christian decency to force the Mayor and Chief of Police and National Guardsmen to let her go into the Superdome with a film crew.

I don’t watch Oprah. I fell asleep watching a network rerun last night and woke up to the late night run of her show. And I’m both glad and sorry I did. Because I now know something I didn’t imagine. Nor, apparently, did she or the surgeon who has gone into disaster scenes all over the world, or the police (who hadn’t been able to get inside) or anyone but the people coming out who told their stories and were poo-poo’d as exaggerators. They were all shocked – regardless of what they had seen before in their lives, they were shocked by what they’d seen for the previous days and even more so what they saw inside.

There were NO LIGHTS in the Superdome – the only light was in narrow streams from holes in the roof. Dead and dying all around. People in total shock who had been thrown into an arena designed for gladiatorial combat not knowing what was going on outside, nor, mostly, what was going on in the dark around them other than smells and screaming and tripping over the dead and dying. People who found no water or food after one day.

For all the entertainer in Oprah might think in terms of more dramatic shots, the woman did not drag the corpses inside. The Chief of Police did not cry because she told him to, nor did the Mayor of New Orleans. (Oh, ok, LATER, at the end of the hour, an Oprah-esque bit with a man of 24 who was sobbing that his 14-year-old dog could not be evacuated with him, took the dog to Baton Rouge and reunited them the following day. So yeah.)

I’m glad to know these things. I’m really not glad to know these things.

How did they get so cold, what do they want?

So I look at the bullying fruit bats of blogosphere and wonder how they can imagine they have anything approaching human decency and compassion. If they want to claim, “Well that’s always the way it’s been, the pecking order,” fine. Don’t claim to have become a HUMAN mammal.

THEY GOT NO FUCKING DECENCY OR COMPASSION, just picking on the helpless. And this Whittle fellow – ok, I use the shorthand term “Nazistic,” and it doesn’t apply to National Socialism (that merger of corporation and state we already have) nor to persecution of Jews, per se – the Nazistic ones always like to pick up the little differences.

He’s saying “We’re GOOD people and THEY, all of them, are BAD people.” There’s the seed, that’s what the roots grow from, the roots of justification to do whatever it is you want, to be given permission for your well-disciplined inner sociopath to emerge. It’s NOT that they want to hurt powerless people. They're quite willing to do it, but it’s something else.

A very sharp fellow in L.A., goes by the name of John Aes-Nihil terms the Nazi adventure as “The Dream-Quest for Impossible Perfection.” They’re not trying so much to hurt the poor and helpless as they are trying to prove, over and over and over again, that THEY are good boys, daddy, honest, and the only way they can find to do it is to push the helpless ones down in the mud and say: “You’re BAD.”

They define BAD to suit their needs. In the same way they justify their own deeds, defining GOOD to suit themselves. It’s GOOD to kill THESE people for THIS reason. It’s BAD to kill THOSE people for THAT reason. Why? THOSE people are our pals.

Van der Leun is fond of referring to his pal who wrote about how he learned everything he needed to know in kindergarten. No shit. Hasn’t changed one bit, either. Seven years old, tell Mommy how GOOD you are. Push down anyone who doesn’t agree. Make up a story to explain why it was GOOD to be cruel. Tell Daddy you’re a good boy, really, a good boy.

What's their problem?

Doesn’t matter if it’s Van der Leun or Monkey Boy in the White House ... little boys who know they aren’t big enough and can’t deal with it but through hurting others.

They went through *Chapel Perilous and came out having lost their hearts in the process.

*"In researching occult conspiracies, one eventually faces a crossroad of mythic proportions (called Chapel Perilous in the trade). You come out the other side either stone paranoid or an agnostic; there is no third way. I came out agnostic." Robert Anton Wilson

"Everything you fear is waiting with slavering jaws in Chapel Perilous, but if you are armed with the wand of intuition, the cup of sympathy, the sword of reason, and the pentacle of valor, you will find there (the legends say) the Medicine of Metals, the Elixir of Life, the Philosopher's Stone, True Wisdom and Perfect Happiness. That's what the legends always say, and the language of myth is poetically precise. For instance, if you go into that realm without the sword of reason, you will lose your mind, but at the same time, if you take only the sword of reason without the cup of sympathy, you will lose your heart."


eXTReMe Tracker