Monday, October 31, 2005

Give 'em hell

"You can't say, 'Please don't be mean to me. Please let me win sometimes.' Give me a break here. If you don't want to fight for the future and you can't figure out how to beat these people then find something else to do." - Bill Clinton, 29 October 2005, Austin, TX

Bush has flip-flopped again:
BUSH PROMISED TO FIRE ANYONE INVOLVED: Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid noted this weekend, "The president said anyone involved would be gone." Now, "we now know that Official A is Karl Rove. He's still around. He should be let go."
But if Bush sticks to his word, Rove is just the beginning. Podesta added, "we know that senior Presidential aides National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley and White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan were either complicit in the leak and the cover up, or grossly negligent in their duties."
Also, "Chief of Staff, Andrew Card has presided over a White House staff that is guilty of a disservice to the President and the country," and should also resign. (American Progress Report)


Friday, October 28, 2005

Dr. Suess

New Dr. Suess book based on this week's events: "Mr. Bush and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day".


Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Hobbes is Back

Letters in the Detriot Free Press in response to Fahling's IDiotic argument against Evolution (and one that supports him but is also amusing).

Charles Darwin


Sunday, October 16, 2005


I am going to be off-line until Monday Oct 24th, taking some time to commune with Nature in Vermont.
When I get back I expect to see Karl Rove and "Scooter" Libby indicted, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh and Bill O'Lielly appologize for lying all the time, and the impearchment hearings begin on Bush as Cheney prepares his resignation.
I also expect the American public to wake up from this nightmare.
Yes, someday this will all be over and we can laugh about it.
Until then......

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Just released photo

In the wake of Katrina's effect on New Orleans, Bush Sr. and Jr. were able to get some fishing in.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Quotes and Denials

Quote of the day from Paul Krugman (NY Times columnist):
"Read the speeches Howard Dean gave before the Iraq war, and compare them with Colin Powell's pro-war presentation to the U.N. Knowing what we know now, it's clear that one man was judicious and realistic, while the other was spinning crazy conspiracy theories. But somehow their labels got switched in the way they were presented to the public by the news media."
Bush's teleconference with soldiers in Iraq was staged and the rehearsal was accidently(?) fed to the satellite. Press Secretary Scott McClellan got pretty irked with the press when they questioned why the troops had to be coached.
One Good Move has the "train wreck".


Thursday, October 13, 2005

Circle of Trust

NY Times columnist David Brooks gave an unusually reflective analysis of his fellow Republicans today:
"Republicans, who these days are as likely to be members of the corporate establishment as the evangelical establishment, are more suspicious of intellectuals and ideas, and more likely to believe that politics is about deal-making, loyalty and power. You know you are in establishment Republican circles when the conversation is bland but unifying. You know you are in conservative circles when it is interesting but divisive."David Brooks
DeNiroMy guess is that now that Bush has come out in defense of Miers based mainly on her religion it appears (or is that just to appease the religious extremists?), she will soon withdraw her nomination, and Bush will be forced to pick someone outside his "circle of trust".
With the Republicans "on the ropes" now that their corruption has been exposed, watch out for more unethical tactics like those used in the 2000 and 2004 elections.
Republicans will not go down without a fight, in fact I suspect that they will continue to try to win at whatever the cost. They are devoted to staying in power even if the public opinion polls are against them.Dempsey
Don't forget we still haven't resolved the election issues yet. Remember that former Sen. Max Cleland (D-GA) had a 7 point advantage going into the voting booth in 2002 and still lost due to electronic voting.

Oh my God!
Report Says White House Ignored CIA report on post-Invasion Chaos


P.S.: I had to remove commenting on this blog since I keep getting blog-spam.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Republicans and ID

Republicans are getting nervous.

  • Bush's approval ratings are down even among his base of religious fanatics.

  • The GOP is having some difficulty in recruiting people to run for the 2006 Senate.

  • New York is almost certainly going to go back to a Democratic governorship.

  • I'm not sure what the overall House race outcome looks like, but I suspect that some GOP seats will be lost to Democrats, hopefully enough to break the back of the beast (one can hope).

Meanwhile we eagerly await some justice to come from the Fitzgerald grand jury.

Part II:

There are many opinion pieces flooding the newspapers these days supposedly showing how Evolution is flawed and Intelligent Design comes to the rescue of the objective mind. Here is one in the Detroit Free Press. I wrote a response as a letter to the Editor:

Re: "Comment: Intelligent design focuses on evidence, fills in origin gaps" (October 10, 2005, Brian Fahling)

Mr. Fahling's analysis of the flaws of the theory of Evolution is itself flawed.

I would like to specifically address some of the claims in his article.

1. The theory of evolution make[s] dogmatic religious or philosophic claims about the origin of life.
It does neither. The theory of evolution explains the observed process of evolution by means of natural selection. It makes no dogmatic claims since it is based on science not dogma. The only "dogma" of science is that we rely on observable phenomena not just speculation. Intelligent design speculates that only a supernatural intelligence could have created life, but has no proof of this intelligence. Science requires proof not just inference.

2. The theory of evolution, unlike intelligent design theory, [is] insular in [its] approach to science.
The theory of evolution is hardly insulated from other approaches to science but is instead integrated with accepted knowledge of geology, cosmology, organic chemistry and others. In fact, evolution is supported and corroborated by many other scientific fields of study.

3. Evolutionists...reason downward from an article of faith and conduct their science with the same dogmatic zeal and selectiveness [as creationist].
Those that understand the overwhelming evidence that supports the theory of evolution do not rely on any articles of faith except their faith in the basis of all science, which is the scientific method and observation. There is nothing selective about the theory of evolution. If there were any evidence that was contrary to the theory it would be discussed and debated in the scientific journals, as this is the method of peer review. No evidence has ever been found to disprove the theory.

4. It is not in dispute that one may infer an evolutionary process from the data, but that is not what the evolutionist does.
Nothing could be further from the truth. The theory of evolution has been validated from the study of millions of fossils, studies on DNA, studies of geology and various methods of dating, all of which work with available evidence, not mere speculation as does intelligent design.

5. The theory of evolution requires that a student affirm the creed that there is no God.
Again this is completely false. Many people who accept the facts about the theory of evolution also believe in God. The theory of evolution and science in general makes no such prerequisite.

6. There are gaps in Darwin's theory.
No scientific theory claims to be perfect. Even the Newton's laws have gaps that were exposed by Einstein's theory of Relativity, but it does not invalidate the model completely. Scientific theories use existing evidence to build and prove a hypothesis. Nothing has been shown to invalidate the theory of evolution.

Intelligent design relies on the concept of a supernatural intelligence in order to explain what appears to be unexplainable. By definition this reliance forces it outside of the realm of science and into metaphysics and religion.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Just a coincidence?

Karl Rove (aka Turd Blossom) testifies in front of the grand jury again today, this time with no immunity, as the media has been re-focused on a new terror threat in New York City, immediately after Bush gave a speech harkening back to his glory days of 9/11. I surely hope, like other NYers, that this new threat is a fake and I suspect it is; just a diversion away from the real story which is Rove et. al.

Actually I'm glad that Bush has finally re-focussed on al Qaeda instead of Iraq. This is something they should never have lost sight of. But let's not be swayed by this administration back into a culture of fear that they pushed on us leading up to the 2004 election.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

It's the OIL stupid!

It was high time they attempted to re-frame the issue!

Bush now says we can't "cut and run" from Iraq because Islamic radicals are seeking to "enslave whole nations and intimidate the world." It's much better to do try to do that with the American military instead. Luckily for both sides slavery is allowed by the bible and intimidation is something this administration has been practicing for years.

Sorry, but the ends do not justify the means. The war was started and then perpetuated on lies. Redefining your goal afterwards with the use of fear and generalizations shouldn't get you a permission slip for more plundering of the treasury by the military-industrial complex.

Really this war is being waged for multiple reasons, none of which is admitted to by the White House or most of their supporters:

  • * It's the OIL stupid. Iraq has about 25% of the world's oil reserves (112.5 billion bbl) and the US govt. would love to control this, for both financial gain to the oil companies and as a strategic resource.

  • * It's the Christians vs. the Muslims. Let's be real. This is a (thinly disguised) war on Islamic Fundamentalism by the Christian Fundamentalists. Many Christians in the US see this as more than just a war on terror(ism) . To them it is a battle against the evil non-Christians.

  • * A great way for those who are politically connected to plunder millions and millions of dollars from the US treasury (borrowed from our future wages of course) and anyone who questions this is unpatriotic. What a great scam! This is a bonanza both to DOD suppliers and contractors (notice they're mainly from Virginia and Texas?). I would wager that biggest benificiaries of this are also the biggest benificiaries of the Bush tax cuts.

  • * War makes a great theme for re-election; or at least it did in 2004. Some Republican representatives who are looking at polls of their constituents have begun to distance themselves from this debacle for re-election in 2006 however.

Part II:

Two reasons NOT to confirm Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court:

  • * She's a born again Christian. Anyone who puts faith above logic should not be sitting on a Federal Court bench at any level, let alone the top level.

  • * She thinks Bush is the most brilliant man she's ever known. Clearly this shows her judgment is severely impaired. Someone please send her a copy of "Bushisms" to go along with "Judging for Dummies".


Wednesday, October 05, 2005

No Ideas

Five Democratic Ideas (for those who have only listened to the Republican mantra that the democrats have no ideas)

1) make college education as universal for the 21st century as a high school education was in the 20th.

2) a summit on the budget to deal with the $3 trillion of debt that's been added up in five years and structural deficits of $400 billion a year.

3) an energy policy that says in 10 years, we cut our dependence on foreign oil in half and make this a hybrid economy.

4) create an institute on science and technology that builds for America like the National Institutes has done for health care; we maintain our edge.

5) have a universal health-care system over the next 10 years where if you work, you have health care.

- Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman Rahm Emanuel (D-IL) appearing on NBC's Meet the Press, 2-Oct-05

[Frankly I would go further on point 5 and have universal health-care regardless of employment status].

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

No more Mr. Nice Guy

Richard Cohen wants the Democrats to play nice ( They shouldn't kick DeLay (hey isn't that a FRENCH name?;-) while he's down. His logic amounts to "That's the tactics of the Republicans and look where it got them" [Let's see: the House, the Senate, the Presidency and now increasingly, the ability to "legislate from the Judiciary"].

And enough of this crap that the Democrats don't have any ideas except criticizing the Republicans. I'm am so tired of that song and of the press playing it over and over as if repetition makes it true. I agree most people don't know what the Democrats stand for because their positions aren't hot topics that sell papers. Being anti-gay is a hot topic. Being for universal health care is not. Yes, I know, those Democrats and their same old ideas that we've never even tried.

Cohen also insists that William Bennet has the right to say that "you could abort every black baby in this country, and your crime rate would go down" and that it's OK as long as you conceed that it is a bad thing to call for. Well of course he has that right, and the KKK has the right to march down Main Street but that doesn't mean that they shouldn't be criticized for it. This isn't about being politically correct, it's about being racist (regardless if you have statistics to justify your position - that more blacks are convicted of crimes). And since he wasn't the first to say it it's ok for him to cite it? I DO expect the Democrats to come out against Bennet for saying that even though he DOES have a right to say it.

Let's face it, the Democratic party has gotten where THEY are at in this country by being the nice guys; by compromising and by going along with the Republican agenda. Some of them seem to move to the right faster and more often than Frist does, thinking that being Republican-lite is going to get them votes. It just makes them look weaker. Folks, don't be afraid of the right-wing calling you a liberal. They're going to smear you anyway so you might as well get a backbone and stand up for what you know is the right thing to do.

My message to the Democrats is: "It's time to draw the line in the sand and refuse to move any further to the right." This country is already so far towards facism (<==Look it up), it doesn't look anything like what I thought this country might look like now based on the potential I saw 35 years ago. In fact the Republican party has been pushing to gut the EPA and other entities which exist for the common good, since they took the reins of power.

I'm sure the next Democratic presidential candidate will call for healing and uniting which is surely what this country needs, but not at the cost of catering to the religious zealots who want to return science to the dark ages, to the "moralists" who want to imagine we are back in the 50's when gays hid in the closet, to the extreme anti-federalists who want to shrink and then drown the federal government in the bathtub, and to the corporate elite who want to not pay taxes while plundering the treasury.

Fuck'em I say. No more Mr. nice guy.