was an American late-night, half-hour political talk show hosted by Bill Maher that ran from 1993 to 2002, first on Comedy Central and then on ABC. Four guests (usually including at least one comedian) would debate topics across the political spectrum in what Maher once described as “The McLaughlin Group on acid.” Of the 1300+ episodes produced, 190 can be viewed on YouTube. [more inside]
NYT Op/Ed on 9/11: 'The Deafness Before the Storm'
"goes into teeth-grinding detail about how the Bush administration had even more advance notice about Osama Bin Laden's attack than we previously realized." Summary
: significantly more negligence than has been disclosed.
Cartoonist Tim Kreider
) of The Pain
talks about the last decade, our "disastrous decline" and his latest book of cartoons and essays, Twilight Of The Assholes. Part 1
“You could almost see their dicks getting hard as they got new ideas."
A Vanity Fair
reporter investigates the chain of command that tossed out the Geneva Conventions and instituted coercive interrogation techniques -- some might call them torture or even war crimes
-- in Bush's Global War on Terror. UC Berkeley law professor John Yoo's now-obsolete 81-page memo to the Pentagon in 2003 [available as PDFs here and here
] was crucial, offering a broad range of legal justifications and deniability for disregarding international law in the name of "self-defense."
that Yoo was just making "a clear point about the limits of Congress to intrude on the executive branch in its exercise of duties as Commander in Chief." [previously here
learn why cleveland is the capital of polka, bowling and kielbasa.
Keith Olbermann's Edward R. Murrow*
moment: A Textbook Definition of Cowardice
. MSNBC's host excoriates Bush, FOX News host Chris Wallace, and the media for its response to former president Clinton's "tantrum
" [still being discussed here
]. Note: Don't just read the transcript. Watch the video, because Olbermann's use of visuals adds greatly to the power of his presentation. No matter which side of the red/blue-state divide you're on, students of politics and media will be reviewing this clip for years to come as a little cultural watershed -- if only a consummate example of "Democrat" angerTM.
Newsfilter: CIA director Porter Goss resigns.
After taking some of the
heat for bad intelligence in the months before 9/11, Cheney's "cat's paw"
finally gets out of the kitchen.
"I've been silent long enough...
My sincere view is that the commitment of our forces to this fight was done with a casualness and swagger that are the special province of those who have never had to execute these missions--or bury the results." Marine Lieutenant General Greg Newbold, the Pentagon's former top operations officer, becomes the latest military insider to raise his voice against the "zealots" who led the US into war in Iraq. He writes in Time
magazine: "Never again, we thought, would our military's senior leaders remain silent as American troops were marched off to an ill-considered engagement. It's 35 years later, and the judgment is in: the Who had it wrong. We have been fooled again... After 9/11, I was a witness and therefore a party to the actions that led us to the invasion of Iraq--an unnecessary war." During the Vietnam war, such discontent among soldiers sparked a massive campaign of disobedience and peace activism (as well as, more darkly, fragging
) within the ranks, as recounted in a new documentary called Sir! No Sir!
Can it happen again? Ask the Soldiers for the Truth
Hindsight on Iraq is 20/20 --
but views diverge. Reason
magazine asks notable libertarians, conservatives, and academics -- from Instapundit
Glenn Reynolds (one word: "win") to Illuminatus!
author Robert Anton Wilson ("Bush has used [the invasion] as an excuse to destroy the last few tattered remnants of the Bill of Rights") -- if they would have chosen differently in 2003, knowing how the war would develop.
Reflected in the worsened respiratory health
of NYC residents (via the WTC Health Registry
), a federal judge ruled
) former Bush administration EPA chief and NJ governor Christine Todd Whitman
misled New York City residents about air quality after the attacks of 9/11. Whether or not the then-head of the Environmental Protection Agency was pressured by Bush economic policy director Lawrence Lindsey
to "get the financial markets open quickly
" (longer 9/11 commission report
) despite concerns, her PR consulting firm
continues to do greenwashing
for petrochemical corporations with very poor environmental records, including FMC
, responsible for 136 Superfund sites
across the country.
Osama bin Laden
And, according to Iranians I trust, Osama bin Laden finally departed this world in mid-December. The al Qaeda leader died of kidney failure and was buried in Iran, where he had spent most of his time since the destruction of al Qaeda in Afghanistan.
Is your name James Moore? If so, you may be a terrorist. Or at least the NSA thinks so
, having added that name -- which also happens to be the name of the author of Bush's Brain: How Karl Rove Made George W. Bush Presidential
-- to its mysteriously targeted
and infamously mismanaged
"No-Fly" list [previously discussed here.
[TotalitarianismFilter] Don't be asking your college librarian
for a copy of that Little Red Book
to do a class assignment, or your parents might get a visit from the good folks at the Department of Homeland Security. More evidence that the Bush administration cannot restrain itself when granted enhanced surveillance powers
You can't make this stuff up: Rumsfeld announces that the Bush administration is planning to commemorate
the fourth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks
with an "America Supports You freedom walk
" from the Pentagon saluting the troops deployed in Operation Iraqi Freedom
, followed by a show by "country music superstar" Clint Black
at the National Mall. (Not to imply that Saddam Hussein had anything to do with 9/11 or anything...)
President Bush pledged in 2003 that "A free Iraq will not be a training ground for terrorists... A free Iraq will not destabilize the Middle East.
" This past January, the CIA's National Intelligence Council observed that Iraq had become "a training ground, a recruitment ground
" for jihadists. Now the senior Marine commander in Iraq, Lt. Gen. James Conway -- in a statement that has not yet been picked up by the media -- acknowledges that the war is furnishing a new "a training ground" for foreign fighters trained in urban warfare who will export terror all over the world, saying, "But there's not much we can do about it at this point in time.
Be afraid: The national threat-alert level today is yellow or "elevated
," with "significant risk of terrorist attacks," says the Department of Homeland Security. In fact, the alert level has been elevated since December of 2003, when it was raised from orange. During the election season, the Fox News network flashed the terror alert level in their "crawl" as if there was breaking news -- the sort of thing that prompted some liberal wags
to ridicule the entire system. Now former DHS secretary Tom Ridge says that the Bush administration was "really aggressive" about raising the threat-alert level
during his tenure, even when the agency felt that the intelligence didn't warrant it.
finally gets around to lodging
an attempt to prove to the standards of a court of law that Bush Knew
about 9/11 in advance, among other evil deeds. Now what?
Bush Junta: A Field Guide to Corruption in Government
- A substantial visual document (200 pages of comics from Fantagraphics, fact-checked with an extensive bibliography; the link goes to a number of sample pages) on the Bush Dynasty, from its beginnings benefitting off of Hitler and WW2 (that entire piece, which is printed in english, is posted in its original dutch online here
), to the Bush's connection to Reagan's assassination, CIA and Iran-Contra, ending with the unsettling origins and profiles of the current administration. A great election primer, featuring comics and art by Steve Brodner, Ralph Steadman, Spain Rodriguez and many others. (Amazon link
provided for a better description)
When you hold a moment of silence for 9/11, it's good to stand with your hand on your heart. But if you're the President, you reach for your crotch
Kerry Calls on Rice to Testify
"John Kerry said Saturday the White House is committing character assassination with its treatment of former counterterror chief Richard Clarke to avoid responding to questions about national security. Kerry also said Condoleezza Rice, President Bush's national security adviser, should testify in public before the commission investigating the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks.
"If Condoleezza Rice can find time to do '60 Minutes' on television before the American people, she ought to find 60 minutes to speak to the commission under oath," Kerry told reporters. "We're talking about the security of our country."...
Pre-9/11, Bush Deprioritized Counter-terrorism and Targeted It For Cuts
The Bush handlers would try to paint Kerry as weak on defense and intelligence, yet it was the GOP that in fact cut budgets for intelligence.
Bush's campaign commercials feature footage from 9/11
, but anger firefighters and families of victims
. Is it disingenuous to defend the ads
when you claimed just nineteen weeks after the tragedy that you would not use the disaster for politcal gain? If anyone should be able to use the event for political purposes, it would be Giuliani, who defends
Professor Pollkatz's statistics.
Interestings graphics on Bush approval/disapproval. This one
, for example, clearly proves that whenever Bush's approval was high, it was driven by an event (the two major events being September 11 and the Iraq war) and steadily declined afterwards. This page
shows that FOX polls consistently overrate Bush, while Zogby polls consistently underrate him. [more inside]
«Clearly, one of the most critical questions
of the twenty-first century concerns why the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 were not prevented. As I outline below, there are numerous aspects regarding the official stories about September 11th which do not fit with known facts, which contradict each other, which defy common sense, and which indicate a pattern of misinformation and coverup. The reports coming out of Washington do very little to alleviate these concerns.»
22 questions to chose from and decide which ones are nightmares of a conspiracy theorist and which ones must be answered.
"If some tinhorn terrorist wants me, tell him to come and get me! I'll be at home, waiting for the bastard!"
These were the brave words spoken by President George W. Bush on September 11th, 2001. Or at least they were according to the upcoming Showtime Original Movie
now filming, scheduled to air on the second anniversary of the attacks. Labelled as a "docudrama" mixing filmed scenes with actual 9/11 footage, the film will co-star 24
actress Penny Johnson and feature George Takai as Norman Mineta. Go ahead, read that again. It'll brace you for when you realize the actor playing George Bush seems slightly familiar
Michael Moore is making a deal with Mel Gibson's Icon Prods. to finance "Fahrenheit 911,"
a documentary that will trace why the U.S. has become a target for hatred and terrorism. It will also depict alleged dealings between two generations of the Bush and bin Laden clans that led to George W. Bush and Osama bin Laden becoming mortal enemies.
The War Behind Closed Doors
PBS' newest "Frontline"
focuses on what has been happening behind the scenes within the Bush administration during the buildup to war against Iraq. Wolfowitz is seen as supporting a policy of US preemptive wars starting in 1992
and urging a US invasion of Iraq
just four days after 9/11, Richard Perle says
that "it was understood that Iraq had to be dealt with" in the earliest days of the Bush presidential campaign, and Colin Powell is shown as the only reason the US sought UN approval at all.
Bush will raise the national terror threat level today from yellow to orange
(CNN). This means little to us here in NYC where we've already been at orange. (At least that's what I've heard, although orange looks like a brownish color on my TV screen and a sort of muddy green on my computer monitor.) What, if anything, will your town, city, state, company, family do in response to this heightened threat level?
Bush Doubted on 9/11 Panel Angry lawmakers accused the White House yesterday of secretly trying to derail creation of an independent commission to investigate the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks while professing to support the idea. The White House responded by renewing its pledge of support for the proposal and suggesting an agreement was near.
Could 9/11 Have Been Prevented?
From the Time Mag. article "
Long before the tragic events of September 11th, the White House debated taking the fight to al-Qaeda. It didn't happen and soon it was too late. The saga of a lost chance.
'20th Hijacker' Offers Guilty Plea and Cooperation
He is charged with helping plan the September 11 attack. During his third arraignment on amended charges, Zacarias Moussaoui offered to enter a guilty plea. "For the guilt phase, I'm guilty," he told the judge. "But for the death penalty, we will see."
You'd think in this day and age, it'd be hard to pull off a complete surprise. Moussaoui is representing himself.
President Bush was told that Osama bin Laden might be plotting to hijack U.S. passenger planes well before September 11th.
The warning was never made public. AP reported earlier this month that FBI headquarters did not act on a memo last July from its Arizona office warning there were a large number of Arabs seeking pilot, security and airport operations training. Said a spokeman for Sen. Bob Graham, Senate Intelligence Committee chair: "It represents a failure to connect the dots."
From a piece in the NYTimes today, Home Front Is Minefield for President
: "The lesson we're learning," one administration official said today, "is that you can bomb the wrong place in Afghanistan and not take much heat for it. But don't mess up at the post office."
Leave it to the White House to come away with exactly the wrong interpretation. But the facts are there, too -- most Americans are more concerned about the (relatively slight) risk of getting Anthrax than the rather significant risk that, if we screw up in Afghanistan, we might lose the current coalition against terrorism, Bin Laden, and any hope for "homeland security" for a long time to come....
Top 10 contradictions
regarding the US bombing of Afghanistan.
National Defense Panel predicted WTC-style attack in 1997.
Also contains link to report. Haven't read it yet (it's pretty long), so I don't know what it suggests. But apparently the Administration is paying attention now. "Unanticipated asymmetries," indeed.
"How Bush should spend his windfall of political capital."
Many links have been posted in the past 10 days to cheap political opportunism in the wake of 0.81
- but this
takes the cake: an op-ed calling for Bush to explicitly
exploit this tragedy to pass bigger tax cuts, ANWR drilling, etc
. Yep, another sickening WSJ effort; I'm sure the families of the victims will take heart in knowing their loved ones are, in fact, a "windfall of political capital
" for Bush. (sorry for the two-front-page-posts-in-a-row, btw
Okay, so I am a little biased against the Democratic Underground.
Occasionally I may even laugh at some of their insults of dubya. I am sure this page was placed on their website early in the day of the attack without thinking. Maybe I am being just a little too sensitive about the tragedy, but I really think they should at LEAST change the date of this letter to santa.
Washington Post/ABC News Poll: Bush's approval rating at 87%
- I wonder if that rating is going to go on a roller-coaster ride similar to his father's.