Friday, July 29, 2005

Fitz gets a new boss, this is trouble

Fitzgerald is getting a new boss. Probably a neocon hack. This may be big trouble.

(Thanks, Ugnmoose, for posting this on DU)

Let's hope and pray that Fitz can hang in there - the pressure on him must be enormous

.http://www.waynemadsenreport.com /

The recent resignation of Patrick Fitzgerald's friend, career Justice Department prosecutor James Comey, as Deputy Attorney General -- and Fitzgerald's immediate supervisor -- is also a warning sign that the Bush administration is growing uncomfortable with the direction of Fitzgerald's investigation. Comey is to be replaced by Timothy Flanigan, a conservative GOP political hack and a Federalist Society colleague of Supreme Court nominee John G. Roberts. Flanigan, along with Roberts, was a member of the 2000 Florida GOP recount team and later the general counsel for the scandal-plagued Tyco Corporation. While at Tyco, Flanigan liaised with tainted GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff and his Greenberg Traurig law firmOn Edit: Notice the connection between Flanigan and John Roberts. The Bushies plant their stooges at every level possible, including the Justice Department and Supreme Court.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Too good to be true

How about this little snippet?

But now comes today's news from Walter Pincus and Jim VandeHei on the front page of The Washington Post:

"The special prosecutor in the CIA leak probe has interviewed a wider range of administration officials than was previously known, part of an effort to determine whether anyone broke laws during a White House effort two years ago to discredit allegations that President Bush used faulty intelligence to justify the Iraq war, according to several officials familiar with the case. . . .

Fitz *may* really mean business. Let's hope.

fucking retards

You can buy a postcard of the Brooklyn Bridge, but you can't photograph it?


MTA has a secret film file
BY PETE DONOHUEDAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER

MTA investigators are keeping a secret database of people stopped and questioned for filming or photographing bridges and tunnels as part of the agency's efforts to thwart terror, the Daily News has learned.

The information is used to try to determine whether shutterbugs are simply putting together vacation slide shows - or gathering intelligence to plot mayhem, law enforcement sources said.
In one instance, a man was questioned for filming on the Verrazano Bridge. He was questioned and released.

A few days later, authorities in another state stopped someone filming on a bridge and asked the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's Interagency Counter Terrorism Task Force if it had information about the person, the sources said.

It turned out the other state's shutterbug was using the same vehicle as the man who was stopped for filming on the Verrazano, sources said.

The sources declined to elaborate on the investigation.

But one source noted that in general, if someone pops up twice filming a crossing, "You start to develop a case.

"Some may not go to a full-blown case that involves an arrest, but it develops into intelligence where you can establish a trail where you can tie individuals together that otherwise would have gone unknown," the source said.

In at least some cases, the film is kept, sources said, and in all cases the images are reviewed.
"By reviewing the film you can tell if they are tourists or if they are cluing in, and you can see on certain films they are cluing in on beams, they are cluing in on security checkpoints," one source said. "Those are the ones that appear to be more than just casual filming."

Another source said those who were stopped let investigators review their film voluntarily. The source was not aware of anyone refusing.

"Most of the time they show us the images right there because they are tourists," the source said.

MTA Bridges and Tunnels oversees seven bridges - the Verrazano, Triborough, Throgs Neck, Whitestone, Henry Hudson, Marine Parkway and Cross Bay Veterans Memorial - and two tunnels, the Midtown and the Battery.

The crossings are used by 800,000 vehicles a day. Originally published on July 27, 2005

Rove gets a raise.

It has been said before. So much for personal accountability...

Top White House staff, including Rove, get annual raises
John Byrne

The top pay for senior White House aides, including Chief of Staff Andrew Card, Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove and Legislative Affairs Director Candida Wolff, mushroomed to $161,000 at the beginning of July, according to a list sent to Congress and obtained by National Journal, RAW STORY can reveal.

Democrats raised the issue on the Democratic Congressional Campaign website Wednesday morning. "Long live the era of personal responsibility!" they wrote. Rove and Vice President Cheney's Chief of Staff Scooter Libby both got raises; each has been questioned by a grand jury about their role in the outing of a covert CIA operative.

"The top salary, paid to 19 aides, is up $4,000 from last year, barely matching the annual inflation rate," penned National Journal reporter Alexis Simendinger. "At the low end of the pecking order, some young staff assistants and correspondence aides earn $30,000 for the honor of sitting on the fringes of history."

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

No longer the "Global War against Terror"?

From the New York Times, 7/26

Whoopie, no more "War against Terror"

read on:


U.S. Officials Retool Slogan for Terror War


By
ERIC SCHMITT and THOM SHANKER
Published: July 26, 2005

WASHINGTON, July 25 - The Bush administration is retooling its slogan for the fight against Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups, pushing the idea that the long-term struggle is as much an ideological battle as a military mission, senior administration and military officials said Monday.
Skip to next paragraph

In recent speeches and news conferences, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and the nation's senior military officer have spoken of "a global struggle against violent extremism" rather than "the global war on terror," which had been the catchphrase of choice. Administration officials say that phrase may have outlived its usefulness, because it focused attention solely, and incorrectly, on the military campaign.

Friday, July 22, 2005

My Favorite Douche-bag, Ann Coulter

I always knew she was a hack, but here's the proof. What a fucking hag.

Coulter caught cribbing from conservative magazines
This article was written by John Byrne and researched by Ron Brynaert.

A column penned by the doyenne of right-wing rhetoric Ann Coulter has come under fire for alleged plagiarism, RAW STORY has learned.

Much of Coulter's Jun. 29, 2005 column, “Thou Shall Not Commit Religion,” bears a striking resemblance to pieces in magazines dating as far back as 1985—and a column written for the Boston Globe in 1995.

A RAW STORY examination found Coulter's work to be at worst plagiarism and at best a cut-and-paste repetition of points authored by conservative religious groups in the early 1990s. These groups sought to de-fund the National Endowment for the Arts, detailing projects paid for by the NEA they dubbed “obscene.”


The campaign traces back to an assault on the NEA mounted by the American Family Association in 1989. After press conferences held by the group's leader Rev. Donald Wildon, then-Sen. Jesse Helms (R-NC) slipped an amendment into a Senate bill that would have axed federal funding for “obscene art.” It never passed the House.

Coulter employs the same NEA talking points in her Jun. 29 column written in the wake of a ruling barring the Ten Commandments from public places. She lists various identical “obscene” projects she says taxpayers have funded. All of the excerpts below compare this column with earlier texts.

The piece was first questioned by The Rude Pundit on Jul. 1. His post noted that Coulter appeared to have cribbed from a defunct 1993 magazine called The Flummery Digest.


The she appears to lift directly from one written by Boston Globe columnist Jeff Jacoby in 1995 for the same column.

Coulter: "...inserting a speculum into her vagina and inviting audience members on stage to view her cervix with a flashlight."

Jacoby: "...inserted a speculum into her vagina and called up audience members to examine her cervix with a flashlight..."

Coulter: "Christ submerged in a jar of urine."

Jacoby: "...photographs of a crucifix submerged in his urine..."


The 1992 MIT-based magazine Counterpoint included similar items.

Coulter: "A photo of a newborn infant with its mouth open titled to suggest the infant was available for oral sex."

Counterpoint: 3. (1984) "The title of a photo of a newborn infant suggested the infant was available for oral sex."

Coulter: "A show titled 'DEGENERATE WITH A CAPITAL D' featuring a display of the remains of the artist's own aborted baby."

Counterpoint: 7. (1990) "...a show called Degenerate With a Capital D...featuring the remains of the artist's own baby."

Coulter: "A novel depicting the sexual molestation of a group of 10 children in a pedophile's garage, including acts of bestiality, with the children commenting on how much they enjoyed the pedophilia."

Counterpoint: 4. (1985) "...a novel titled Saturday Night at San Marcos relates the sexual molestation of 10 children in a pedophile's garage, including acts of bestiality, and how much they enjoyed the pedophile's games."

Coulter: "A female performer inserting a speculum into her vagina and inviting audience members on stage to view her cervix with a flashlight."

Counterpoint: 6. (1989-1990) "Annie Sprinkle...inserting a speculum into her vagina, invites members on stage to view her cervix with a flashlight."

Out of seven examples listed in “Counterpoint,” Coulter snapped up four.

Karl, it's time to get yours.

What goes around, comes around. I hope there's truth to this. If there is, I hope Karl sings to save his ass. Karl for the chimp? That's a good deal. Perjury? Obstruction?

We may really have them this time.

Read on.
***************

Below is a Bloomberg article which is reporting that Karl Rove, senior adviser to the President and deputy chief of staff, and Lewis Libby, chief of staff to Vice President Cheney, are being investigated for having lied to a federal grand jury about how they learned the identity of a covert CIA agent, Valerie Plame (Murray Waas at the American Prospect wrote a similar story yesterday).

Rove, Libby Accounts in CIA Case Differ With Those of Reporters
By Richard Keil

July 22 (Bloomberg) — Two top White House aides have given accounts to the special prosecutor about how reporters told them the identity of a CIA agent that are at odds with what the reporters have said, according to persons familiar with the case.

Lewis “Scooter'’ Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, told special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald that he first learned from NBC News reporter Tim Russert of the identity of CIA agent Valerie Plame, the wife of former ambassador and Bush administration critic Joseph Wilson. Russert has testified before a federal grand jury that he didn’t tell Libby of Plame’s identity.

White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove told Fitzgerald that he first learned the identity of the CIA agent from syndicated columnist Robert Novak, who was first to report Plame’s name and connection to Wilson. Novak, according to a source familiar with the matter, has given a somewhat different version to the special prosecutor.

These discrepancies may be important because one issue Fitzgerald is investigating is whether Libby, Rove, or other administration officials made false statements during the course of the investigation. The Plame case has its genesis in whether any administration officials violated a 1982 law making it illegal to knowingly reveal the name of a CIA agent.

The CIA requested the inquiry after Novak’s July 14, 2003, article that said Plame recommended her husband for a 2002 mission to check into reports Iraq tried to buy uranium from Niger. Wilson, in a July 6 column in the New York Times, said the Bush administration “twisted” some of the intelligence on Iraq’s weapons to justify the war.

Robert Luskin, Rove’s attorney, said today that Rove did tell the grand jury “he had not heard her name before he heard it from Bob Novak.'’ He declined in an interview to comment on whether Novak’s account of their conversation differed from Rove’s.

There also is a discrepancy between accounts given by Rove and Time magazine reporter Matt Cooper. The White House aide mentioned Wilson’s wife — though not by name — in a July 11, 2003 conversation with Cooper. Rove says that Cooper called him to talk about welfare reform and the Wilson connection was mentioned later in passing.

Cooper wrote in Time magazine last week that he told the grand jury that he never discussed welfare reform with Rove in that call.

The leak case shows that administration officials have in effect been using reporters as shields by claiming that the information on Plame first came from them.

One reporter, Judith Miller of the New York Times, has been jailed on contempt of court charges for refusing to testify before the grand jury about her reporting on the Plame case.

Cooper testified only after Time Inc. said it would comply with Fitzgerald’s demands for Cooper’s notes and reporting on the Plame matter, particularly regarding his dealings with Rove.
Libby didn’t return a phone call seeking comment.

The various accounts of conversations between Rove, Libby and reporters come as new details emerge about a classified State Department memorandum that’s also at the center of Fitzgerald’s probe.

A memo by the department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR) included Plame’s name in a paragraph marked “(S)'’ for `Secret,’ a designation that should have indicated to anyone who read it that the information was classified, the Washington Post reported yesterday.
The memo, prepared July 7, 2003, for Secretary of State Colin Powell, is a focus of Fitzgerald’s interest, according to individuals who have testified before the grand jury and attorneys familiar with the case.

The three-page document said that Wilson had been recommended for a CIA-sponsored trip to Africa by his wife, Valerie Wilson, who worked on the CIA’s counter-proliferations desk.
In his New York Times article, Wilson said there was no basis to conclude that Iraq was trying to buy nuclear material in Africa and that the administration had exaggerated the evidence.
Bush had said in his State of the Union message in January, 2003 that Iraq was trying to purchase nuclear materials in Africa.

The memo summarizing the Plame-Wilson connection was provided to Powell as he left with President George W. Bush on a five-day trip to Africa. Fitzgerald is exploring whether other White House officials who accompanied Bush may have gained access to the memo and shared its contents with officials back in Washington. Rove and Libby didn’t accompany Bush to Africa.
One key to the inquiry is when White House aides knew of Wilson’s connection to Plame and whether they learned about it through this memo or other classified information.
Some Bush allies were hopeful that the Fitzgerald investigation, which dominated the news in Washington for the first part of July, would subside as the focus now is on Bush’s nomination of Judge John Roberts to fill the first vacancy on the Supreme Court in 11 years.
Yet special prosecutor Fitzgerald, not media coverage, will determine the outcome of this investigation.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

WSJ- Memo was confidential.

From Daily Kos, excerps from WSJ article, 7/19/05


Memo Underscored Issue of Shielding Plame's Identity

A classified State Department memo that may be pivotal to the CIA leak case made clear that information identifying an agent and her role in her husband's intelligence-gathering mission was sensitive and shouldn't be shared, according to a person familiar with the document.
A special prosecutor is investigating whether Bush administration officials broke the law by intentionally outing a covert intelligence operative. Investigators are trying to determine if the memo, dated June 10, 2003, was how White House officials learned that Valerie Wilson was an agent for the Central Intelligence Agency.



The memo's details are significant because they will make it harder for officials who saw the document to claim that they didn't realize the identity of the CIA officer was a sensitive matter. Patrick Fitzgerald, the special prosecutor, may also be looking at whether other crimes -- such as perjury, obstruction of justice or leaking classified information -- were committed.


The paragraph in the memo discussing Ms. Wilson's involvement in her husband's trip is marked at the beginning with a letter designation in brackets to indicate the information shouldn't be shared, according to the person familiar with the memo. Such a designation would indicate to a reader that the information was sensitive. The memo, though, doesn't specifically describe Ms. Wilson as an undercover agent, the person familiar with the memo said.
Generally, the federal government has three levels of classified information -- top secret, secret and confidential -- all indicating various levels of "damage" to national security if disclosed. There also is an unclassified designation -- indicating information that wouldn't harm national security if shared with the public -- but that wasn't the case for the material on the Wilsons prepared by the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research. It isn't known what level of classification was assigned to the information in the memo.


Monday, July 18, 2005

Dear Karl...

(A brilliant post seen on democraticunderground.com)

Dear Karl, I just wanted to thank you for the fine job you are doing. You really are a one-of-a-kind wonder. While getting credit for being a genius you have destroyed your own administration. Thank you. I've been doing what I can. But, your perverse sense of politics has done it for us.

Only you could have made Joe Wilson a household name by trying to ruthlessly crush him. By trying to discredit Wilson's completely factual rejection of the now famous "16 words", you have done more to expose the lies and corruption in this administration than I could have ever dreamed. Only you would have been so arrogant as to assume that you could continue to abuse your power indefinitely despite, the fact that you got your political start working During Nixon's days and downfall.

It is nice of you to be so arrogant. It set you and your corrupt buddies up for a very hard fall. Only you could have made sure that history will judge this corrupt regime as harshly as they deserve. You have assured indictments, resignations and public shame. You really are "the architect" of this administration's collapse. Only you would be so stubborn that you would keep hanging around and stinking up the place. Your own personal ambition continues to tarnish your president, the vice-president and their entire corrupt posse. A loyal soldier would have fallen on his sword by now to diminish the long term damage to the administration.

Thanks for being more concerned about your power than protecting these criminals that you work for. Only You. So, thank you very , very much for just being you. All of your arrogance, greed, ambition, and sleaze have ensured that those of us that care about a free country will win and you, your cronies and your supporters go down in flames.You are truly an outstanding example of ego driven, power-madness. No one could make it more clear how evil these guys are than you!

Sincerely,

DAYour Biggest Fan!

bush changes his story (again)

They're at it again...

First, it was "Anyone involved", now it's "Anyone convicted".


Anyone Convicted in Leak Inquiry Will Be Fired, Bush Says
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By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: July 18, 2005
Filed at 11:50 a.m. ET

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Bush said Monday that if anyone on his staff committed a crime in the CIA-leak case, that person will ''no longer work in my administration.'' At the same time, Bush yet again sidestepped a question on the role of his top political adviser, Karl Rove, in the matter.

''We have a serious ongoing investigation here and it's being played out in the press,'' Bush said at an East Room news conference.

Bush, appearing at a news conference with visiting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of India, spoke a day after Time magazine's Matthew Cooper said that a 2003 phone call with Rove was the first he heard about the wife of Bush administration critic Joseph Wilson apparently working for the CIA.



Bush said in June 2004 that he would fire anyone in his administration shown to have leaked information that exposed the identity of Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame. On Monday, however, he added the qualifier that it would have be shown that a crime was committed.

I'm Sorry, Karl...

"It's wrong, it's outrageous, and folks involved in this, frankly, owe Karl Rove an apology," - Ken Mehlman, RNC Chairman

Apologize to Karl Rove? And they say Dean is a wacko.

Friday, July 15, 2005

my favorite touch-hole

Truly, the lowest of the low.

DELAY KILLS INVESTIGATION INTO LABOR ABUSE IN MARIANAS ISLANDS: In 1998, DeLay helped kill a “congressional fact-finding trip that was being planned as part of an investigation of sweatshop conditions in the garment industry in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.” Jack Abramoff represented the Northern Mariana Islands at the time, aiding them in their quest to avoid U.S. labor laws. To this end, Abramoff flew dozens of lawmakers and their aides for luxurious vacations to the balmy islands, including one 1997-98 New Year’s trip for DeLay and his wife. (It was on this trip that DeLay called Abramoff “one of my closest and dearest friends.”) Later that year, Rep. Peter Hoekstra (R-MI) decided to leading a fact-finding investigation into worker abuse in the islands’ garment industry. When DeLay caught wind of the investigation, his office threatened the Hoekstra with loss of his subcommittee chairmanship if he continued.

DELAY RAISES CORPORATE CASH FOR TRMPAC: DeLay is embroiled in a scandal in Texas for his active participation in illegally funneling corporate funds to assist state political campaigns. DeLay’s political action committee, Texans for a Republican Majority (TRMPAC), is under criminal investigation for using corporate money to finance Texas campaigns. DeLay has tried to distance himself from the group, but documents show DeLay “personally forwarded at least one large check” to the group and was “in direct contact with lobbyists for some of the nation’s largest companies” on TRMPAC’s behalf. [Source: NYT, 3/10/05; Salon, 10/04/04]

DELAY BRIBES CONGRESSMAN TO VOTE FOR MEDICARE: DeLay has admitted offering to endorse Sen. Nick Smith’s (R-MI) son Brad, who was running for Congress at the time, in exchange for Smith’s “yea” vote on the Medicare bill. His actions violated House rules and earned DeLay a “public admonishment” from the Ethics Committee. Smith originally alleged — and then retracted after pressure from House leaders — that DeLay also offered a $100,000 bribe for his vote. DeLay extended the role call on the Medicare bill for nearly three hours in order “to avoid an embarrassing loss.” [Slate, 10/1/04; WP, 10/1/04]

DELAY USES TAXPAYER MONEY FOR PARTISAN STUNT: The House ethics panel rebuked DeLay for using government resources to help locate a private plane he thought was carrying Texas Democratic legislators. DeLay was trying to force the legislators back to the capitol so he could push through his “bitterly disputed congressional redistricting.” The ethics report cited House rules that bar members from taking “any official action on the basis of the partisan affiliation…of the individuals involved” and said DeLay’s behavior raised “serious concerns under such “standards of conduct.” [WP, 10/7/04]

DELAY PAYS FOR GOLF TOURNAMENTS WITH CASH MEANT FOR KIDS: DeLay used a children’s charity, Celebrations for Children Inc., as cover for collecting soft money from anonymous interest groups, some of which was used for “dinners, a golf tournament, a rock concert, Broadway tickets and other fundraising events” at the Republican convention in New York. Because the money was supposedly for charity, companies wishing to curry favor with DeLay were able to do so without revealing themselves as campaign donors. Federal laws governing tax-exempt charities allow no more than an insubstantial portion of a group’s revenue to be spent on activities other than the charity’s main stated purpose. [CBS, 11/14/03; WP, 3/24/04]

DELAY PROMISES ‘SEAT AT TABLE’ FOR DONOR: In one of its three public rebukes, the House Ethics Committee cited the belief on the part of executives at an energy company, Westar Energy Inc., that a $56,500 contribution to a political action committee associated with DeLay would get them a “seat at the table” where key energy legislation was being drafted. DeLay also participated in Westar’s golf fundraiser at The Homestead resort in the summer of 2002, ” just as the House-Senate conference on major energy legislation…was about to get underway.” [WP, 10/7/04]

DELAY TAKES MONEY FROM TEXAS PRISON COMPANY WITH LEGISLATION PENDING: DeLay “took a $100,000 check from a private prison company” — the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) — at a fundraiser for his children’s charity, the DeLay Foundation for Kids. CCA — whose 20-year history has been “fraught with malfeasance, mismanagement, and abuse” — was part of an ongoing lobby for a bill that would privatize up to half of Texas’s jails. DeLay is known for wielding major influence over the Republican-led legislature that will decide on the matter. [Knight Ridder, 11/30/04; Texas Observer, 6/6/03]

DELAY BLOCKS LEGISLATION FOR PARTISAN VENDETTA: In 1999, DeLay received a “private rebuke” for threatening retaliation against the Electronic Industries Association when the trade group named a Democrat to head its Washington operation. To punish the group, DeLay stopped two uncontroversial trade bills that would have benefited the EIA and told the association it would lose all GOP access unless it hired a Republican instead. The group still hired the Democrat, but a little later, the EIA quietly hired a former House Republican staff member who promptly showed up at a fundraiser for DeLay’s ARMPAC. [Texas Observer, 2/4/00; Slate, 12/5/98]

DELAY TAKES SHADY DONATIONS FOR LEGAL DEFENSE FUND: The list of recent donors to DeLay’s legal defense fund includes two lawmakers placed on the House Ethics Committee this year (they replaced conservatives who were purged for being critical of DeLay), and corporations implicated in DeLay’s alleged fundraising violations. Corporate donors include Bacardi U.S.A., the rum maker that has also been indicted in the Texas investigation, and Reliant Energy, “another major contributor to a Texas political action committee formed by Mr. DeLay that is the focus of the criminal inquiry.” In December, DeLay was forced to return funds from registered lobbyists because those contributions violated House ethics rules. [NYT, 3/13/05; Time, 3/13/05]

DELAY LEAVES ETHICS BEHIND ON EUROPEAN VACATION: DeLay enjoyed a luxurious vacation at the Four Seasons Hotel in London in mid-2000, paid for by an Indian tribe and a gambling services company, both of which opposed gambling legislation DeLay voted against two months later. The payment was funneled through lobbyist Jack Abramoff, best known for teaming up with right-wing religious fundamentalist Ralph Reed to close down a Texas casino operated by the Tigua Indians in 2002, then persuading the tribe to pay the two of them $4.2 million to lobby Washington lawmakers, including DeLay, to reopen it. According to expense accounts obtained by the Journal, Abramoff financed DeLay and DeLay’s staff’s stay at the Four Seasons hotel to the tune of $4,285.35. The total reimbursement for expenses in London was $13,318.50. [WP, 3/12/05; Raw Story, 2/25/05; WP, 9/29/04]

DELAY LEAVES HOUSE RULES BEHIND ON ASIAN VACATION: DeLay accepted an expense-paid trip to South Korea which, in direct violation of House rules, was paid for by a South Korean lobbying group. The Korea-US Exchange Council, a group registered with the Foreign Agents Registration Act, was created with help from DeLay’s former chief of staff. The cost to send DeLay, his wife and three of his lawmaker friends to Seoul for three days was $106,921, the fourth largest cost for any single trip taken by lawmakers between January 2000 and September 2004. [WP, 3/10/05]

DELAY KICKS ETHICS OUT OF HOUSE: DeLay and his allies in the House have sought to cripple the House Ethics Committee. The committee, which rebuked DeLay three times last year, was purged of its most “responsible” members last month and is currently “paralyzed” by a proposed rules change that “would prevent the committee from launching any investigation without the support of at least one Republican–a restriction designed to protect the majority leader.” [WP, 2/5/05; WP, 10/7/04; Time, 3/13/05]

DELAY TRIES TO CHANGE RULES TO PROTECT POWER: DeLay was the driving force behind the decision by House leaders to abandon an 11-year-old party rule that “required leaders to step aside temporarily if indicted.” The idea was dropped only after rank-and-file lawmakers complained “the party was sending the wrong message.” [NYT, 11/18/04; WP, 3/11/05]

McCain. Nice guy or scumbag?

My sister and I play a game. One of us names a person, then the other has to say if that person is a "good guy" or "scumbag"

Example: George W. Bush -----------------> scumbag
Tom DeLay-----------------------> scumbag
Dick Cheney---------------------> scumbag
Jimmy Carter--------------------> nice guy

OK, those are easy ones, and just examples, but the other night Liz and I were playing this game and Liz said "John McCain" and I honestly didn't know what to say. I disagree with much of what McCain is, but truthfully, I don't think he's a scumbag.

I never thought I would say that about a republican in this administration, and I feel I must be missing something. Only I can't figure out what I'm missing.

McCain believes what we're doing in Iraq is the right thing. I disagree. That doesn't make McCain a scumbag. It makes him wrong, but not a scumbag.

McCain was one voice of reason when the neocons threatened to use the nuclear option if the dems didn't give bush what he wanted. McCain was a candle in that darkness. McCain was a POW and has firsthand knowledge of how it feels to be a POW (unlike our president, who never saw combat)and speaks out against our interrogation policies regarding detainees captured during the "global war on terror"

So, I disagree with much, if not most, of what McCain stands for. Which is fine. The thing is, I don't thing McCain is a scumbag. I think he talks from the heart. Does not bow to rhetoric, does not kiss w's ass. A regular guy. Is it possible that McCain is not a scumbag? Or am I missing something obvious?

Thursday, July 14, 2005

One can only hope...

United Press International


White House fears indictment

Jul. 14, 2005 at 11:55AM
White House officials told The Washington Post they fear someone in the Bush administration may be indicted regarding the leak of a covert CIA operative's name. The Post report Thursday did not name its sources, saying "officials acknowledged privately" that an indictment naming a member of the administration could come this year. Special counsel Patrick Fitzgerald has been investigating the release of the name of CIA operative Valerie Plame, which is a crime for a government official. But the Post said legal experts said there are other possible problems related to the case, including perjury and obstruction of justice. Time magazine reporter Matthew Cooper appeared Wednesday before a federal grand jury convened to look into the case. Another reporter, Judith Miller of The New York Times, remains jailed in Virginia because she refuses to appear before the grand jury. White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove has been linked to Cooper but Rove's attorney Robert Luskin said, "Cooper's truthful testimony will not call into question the accuracy or completeness of anything Rove has previously said to the prosecutor or grand jury," the Post reported.

rush limbaugh's Wilson conspiracy theory

Wouldn't simply admitting that rove is a heartless, vindictive rat bastard be easier than thinking up this garbage-

Blogged by Brad on 7/14/2005 @ 12:24pm PT...
Rush Unglued Over RoveGate...
Working Hard to Defend Alleged Treason in the White House
And BRAD BLOG Scoops AP...

Looks like we scooped AP with our report yesterday on Ambassador Joe Wilson's call for Bush to fire Rove last night. They're just now running their story on it ...

Looks like we scooped AP with our report yesterday on Ambassador Joe Wilson's call for Bush to fire Rove last night. They're just now running their story on it.

Meanwhile, back at Disinfo Central...If you missed the Rush Limbaugh show this morning, you missed quite the lolapalooza. He's become positively unglued vis a vis the Plame/Rove affair. And it was a hoot!

The "theory" that Rush has been pummelling his Ditto Heads with all day: Joe Wilson has been a part of a double super secret background conspiracy with the DNC since day one, well before he was sent by the CIA to Niger.

Yes, that's right. According to Rush, the entire plan to send George W. Bush's own father's Man in Iraq -- a decades-long expert in African and Middle-Eastern affairs to Niger -- was all just a ploy by Democrats "to undermine the War in Iraq and the Bush Presidency," as Rush repeatedly described it.

We suppose then, that Bush 41's letter sent to Wilson saying that he concurred with much of the article that Wilson wrote prior to the war in the San Jose Mercury News was also part of that conspiracy.

Why is Dubya's own father trying to destroy Dubya's own "Presidency", dammit?!Rush's final words at the end of the show (referring to the Press Conference scheduled by Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) to happen shortly): "Chuck Shumer is Joe Wilson's 'handler' in this agency plot to bring down the President."Good lord, these Right Wing Tin-Foil Hat wearers never fail to entertain.Po' po' Rush he was even having trouble getting anything but callers who were supportive of Wilson today!

Rush is in as much trouble today as his White House counterpart Scottie McClellan has been in all week in the WH press room. We're also honored that Rush was unglued enough to refer to The BRAD BLOG as a "left wing blog" at the top of the show when he said that "Wilson was even speaking to left wing bloggers last night."He didn't mention us by name though. Geez, we always give him full credit for everything he says. Oh, well.Anyway...As reported here yesterday, Wilson appeared this morning on the TODAY Show. The video from his appearance is available at Crooks and Liars.

Tom DeLay, what an asshole

Is there anywhere in the world a bigger asshole than Tom DeLay. This puke has been skirting the law for years, has been in front of ethics committees three times. A real piece of shit.

Of all the people in the world, here we have DeLay defensing Karl Rove. This is so un-fucking-believable.

Here is the article, courtesy of http://gopusa.com. Tom fucking Delay. Of all people to comment on a persons character. Rove, DeLay and Fox News. Gimme a break.

Here's the article:

'Sharks' Circling Around Karl Rove, Says DeLayBy Monisha BansalCNSNews.com CorrespondentJuly 14, 2005

(CNSNews.com) -- Congressional leaders Wednesday sparred over Democrats' demand that President Bush fire White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove for partially divulging the identity of a covert CIA agent.

According to Time Magazine reporter Matthew Cooper, who testified Wednesday before a federal grand jury investigating the leak, Rove spoke with him on July 11, 2003, about CIA agent Valerie Plame without naming the agent. Five days earlier, Plame's husband, former U.S. Ambassador Joseph Wilson, had used an op/ed to criticize the Bush administration's claims about Iraq's nuclear weapons program.

That was enough of an implication for U.S. Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), the House minority leader, who Wednesday called for Rove to be fired.

"The president said two years ago that he wanted to get to the bottom of this. If he were sincere, it would have happened," Pelosi said.

"For two years, there has been an investigation that did not reveal Karl Rove's involvement until a reporter went to jail," she added, a reference to New York Times reporter Judith Miller, who refused to identify the source of the information she gathered about Plame and was subsequently held in contempt of court.

"It looks to me that there may have been some effort by people in the White House to obstruct the investigation," added Pelosi.

U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay (R-Texas), the House majority leader, rushed to Rove's defense, telling Fox News that Pelosi's remarks were "typical of the Democrats.
"They smell blood, and Democrats are the sharks in the water," DeLay said. "You shouldn't be fired for a leak. You should be fired for a crime."


The Los Angeles Times has reported that Rove was fired from President George H. W. Bush's re-election campaign in 1992 over suspicions that he leaked information to Robert Novak, the columnist who first reported that Plame was a CIA operative.
The current Bush administration says it is still investigating how Plame's name was leaked to the press and has not determined whether a crime was committed.
White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan defended Rove, saying that he and every member of the White House staff had Bush's support. "They wouldn't be working here at the White House if they didn't have the president's confidence," he said.
Miller, the New York Times reporter, spent her eighth day in jail Wednesday for refusing to comply with a grand jury subpoena to name her source for the leak.
Copyright © 1998-2005 CNSNews.com - Cybercast News Service

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

double standard

It's so frustrating. These shitheads are constantly changing the rules in the middle of the game.


BUSH ADMINISTRATION SAYS IT WILL NOT TOLERATE LEAKS: "The president does have very deep concerns about anything that would be inappropriately leaked that could in any way endanger America's ability to gather intelligence information, and even that could harm our ability to maintain sources and methods and anything that could interfere with America's ability to fight the war on terrorism." - White House spokesman Ari Fleischer, 6/21/02

GEORGE H.W. BUSH CALLED LEAKERS 'TRAITORS': "I have nothing but contempt and anger for those who betray the trust by exposing the names of our sources. They are, in my view, the most insidious of traitors." - President George H.W. Bush, 4/26/99

RUMSFELD SAID THOSE WHO LEAK SHOULD BE JAILED: "[Leakers] are disgraceful. They're unprofessional. They're dangerous. They put people's lives at risk. I would also add that I think it's the obligation of people who find people leaking to tell responsible authorities because folks that do it and put people's lives at risk ought to be in jail." - Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, 2/13/03

ASHCROFT SAID LEAKS DAMAGE NATIONAL SECURITY: "Leaks of classified information do substantial damage to the security interests of the nation.” - Attorney General John Ashcroft, 12/14/01, upon creating a task force to investigate government leaks

One simple question: where are these tough talkers now when it comes to Karl Rove?