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Secret authorization of severe interrogation methods

Secret U. S. Endorsement of Severe Interrogations. The New York Times has a 4000-word report today on secret Justice Department opinions--never previously disclosed--authorizing severe interrogation methods. Congress has outlawed cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment; in response, Justice declared that the CIA's most extreme interrogation methods are not cruel, inhuman, and degrading. These secret opinions, issued in 2005, are still in effect. Most lawmakers did not know they existed. White House response: "This country does not torture."
posted by russilwvong on Oct 4, 2007 - 107 comments

"War Made Easy" A Movie On How Government Deception and the Conservative Media (includeds NYT & NPR, national pentagon radio) has fostered War.

“War Made Easy" is a documentary with Sean Penn narrating, and is based on a book by Norman Solomon . This is an award winning expose on how the American Public has been led into a 50-year pattern of government deception and spin, dragging the United States from one war into another. Remarkably this film exhumes archival footage of official distortion and exaggeration from LBJ to George W. Bush, revealing in stunning detail how the American news media have uncritically disseminated the pro-war messages of successive presidential administrations. Brutally persuasive this film presents disturbing examples of propaganda from those we want to believe in.
posted by Rancid Badger on Sep 29, 2007 - 51 comments

Allí, ese 16 de marzo, Bush, Blair y Aznar decidieron sustituir al Consejo de Seguridad de Naciones Unidas y usurparon sus funciones para declarar por su cuenta y riesgo la guerra contra Irak.

Bush and Aznar pre-Iraq Invasion-- Transcript of their private conversations in Crawford, Feb 22, 2003: "Quedan dos semanas. En dos semanas estaremos militarmente listos. Estaremos en Bagdad a finales de marzo", le dijo a Aznar. ("2 weeks. In 2 weeks we will be ready militarily. We'll be in Baghdad by the end of March", he told Aznar.) Consider this historical documentation. Full transcript here, and audio clips in first link. [more inside]
posted by amberglow on Sep 25, 2007 - 46 comments

the sentiment fits equally well in the heart of a citizenry that believes it is already dead

General Strike. Garret Keizer has an idea. It's really not so outlandish. But of course it won't do any good.
posted by BackwardsCity on Sep 23, 2007 - 95 comments

How George Bush became the new Saddam

How George Bush became the new Saddam. "Its strategies shattered, a desperate Washington is reaching out to the late dictator's henchmen." [Via Firedoglake.]
posted by homunculus on Sep 22, 2007 - 54 comments

Bush taps Mukasey as AG nominee

Mukasey Mukasey Mukasey Mukasey
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese on Sep 17, 2007 - 34 comments

shock doctrine at work

shock doctrine at work
Fisk documents the dismantling of Iraqi culture - Klein exposes the history behind the destruction.
posted by specialk420 on Sep 17, 2007 - 40 comments

Leave Him Alone.

"He's a human. And all you Democrats want to do is knock him down." [more inside]
posted by brownpau on Sep 14, 2007 - 41 comments

Whole lotta spyin' goin' on

Since the revelation that the telecommunications companies assisted in illegal spying on domestic phone calls, a host of lawsuits have sprung up seeking damages for civil liberties violations. The Bush administration has responded by seeking the power to grant blanket immunity to criminal and civil action to the companies involved. The claim that the suits could bankrupt the companies indicates that the spying was even more widespread than previously believed; If Verizon is worth $120,000,000,000, then given the estimate of $1000 per violation, one hundred and twenty million calls were spied upon.
posted by Pope Guilty on Sep 4, 2007 - 43 comments

Death Grip

Death Grip: How Political Psychology Explains Bush's Ghastly Success. Interesting article on the work of psychologists Jeff Greenberg, Sheldon Solomon, and Tom Pyszczynski. [Via Disinformation.]
posted by homunculus on Aug 29, 2007 - 68 comments

Bush dines at Dooky Chase's restaurant in the Treme

President Bush touched down in New Orleans at 7:11 p.m. this evening The 84-year-old Chase sat close to the president and accepted his praise for the meal of jambalaya, stewed okra and gumbo z'herb, an all-greens gumbo that's a tradition at Chase's Holy Thursday dinners.
posted by nola on Aug 28, 2007 - 51 comments

Bonaparte and Bush on Deck

Lessons from Past Western Incursions in the Middle East. A speech by Juan Cole at the New America Foundation in which he discusses his new book, Napoleon's Egypt: Invading the Middle East, and the relevance and lessons of Napoleon's expedition in Egypt to the current American occupation of Iraq. A shorter version, covering many of the same points, is in this article: Pitching the Imperial Republic.
posted by homunculus on Aug 26, 2007 - 17 comments

The Great Iraq Swindle

The Great Iraq Swindle: How Bush Allowed an Army of For-Profit Contractors to Invade the U.S. Treasury
posted by mr_crash_davis on Aug 26, 2007 - 78 comments

Pin the Bush on the Flag and Impeach Cheney (and Bush)

Asheville likes to play: Pin the Bush on the Flag and Pass the Impeach Cheney (and Bush).
posted by paulinsanjuan on Aug 21, 2007 - 37 comments

Bush the Dissident

Bush the Dissident. (WaPo) Background (and previously) here here here here and here.
posted by Avenger on Aug 19, 2007 - 45 comments

The Wild Yonder

Flying in the Alaska Bush. A photoessay of some bush flying in Alaska with a Piper Super Cub.
posted by exogenous on Aug 14, 2007 - 28 comments

Rove Resigns

Karl Rove Resigns. The man known as “Bush's Brain” and whom Frontline called “The Architect” will leave office at the end of August.
posted by Ethereal Bligh on Aug 13, 2007 - 213 comments

Seemed a Harmless Little F*ck...

Why Does AT&T Hate Pearl Jam’s Freedom? Well, of course, they’re all apologies now… But this latest corporate misadventure seems to touch on all the hot buttons: Media consolidation, net neutrality and the future of political speech in America. (Newsfilter)
posted by saulgoodman on Aug 10, 2007 - 72 comments

Bill Maher: The Decider

"Bill Maher: The Decider" [Parts 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8, YouTube]. Maher at the top of his game.
posted by McLir on Jul 27, 2007 - 87 comments

The Gays Are Getting Married

It's All Because. Have you ever had those days where you're wondering just why everything about your life is feeling like it's going down the toilet bowl? Oded Gross knows, and he will tell you all about it. In a song.
posted by brownpau on Jul 26, 2007 - 17 comments

Guevara With a Sweet Southern Tan

Do the Coup D'etat. The White House has made the Constitutional Crisis official: the Justice Department will never be allowed to pursue contempt charges against an official invoking executive privilege -- even if it's blatantly illegal.
posted by spiderwire on Jul 20, 2007 - 299 comments

Views on Impeaching Bush and Cheney

Tough talk about impeachment. A public opinion poll from the American Research Group recently reported that more than four in ten Americans — 45% — favor impeachment hearings for President Bush and more than half — 54% — favored impeachment for Vice President Cheney. In the video segment linked to here (available via javascript pop-up window from the main linked page), Bill Moyers gets perspective on the role of impeachment in American political life from Constitutional scholar Bruce Fein, who wrote the first article of impeachment against President Bill Clinton, and THE NATION's John Nichols, author of THE GENIUS OF IMPEACHMENT. Transcript is available here.
posted by psmealey on Jul 16, 2007 - 179 comments

Not with bang?

It's been said before that the US Army is broken: in April, last December by Colin Powell and Pat Buchanan, by the head of the Army Reserve in 2005, by several generals as far back as 2004. But now, even as another Republican senator, Domenici, joins Warner, Voinovich, and Lugar in abandoning support for Bush's War, Joe Klein in Time Magazine says the end is inevitable, regardless of what politicians want:
According to the Broken Army clock, troop levels will begin to wane in March 2008, no matter what Congress decides in September; the current 20 brigade combat teams will be reduced to 15 by August 2008. There is growing speculation in the military that Bush will try to pre-empt the Petraeus testimony by announcing a gradual drawdown from 20 to 15 combat brigades later this summer.

posted by orthogonality on Jul 6, 2007 - 104 comments

Freedom

Bush Commutes Prison Term of I. Lewis Libby.
posted by four panels on Jul 2, 2007 - 500 comments

We don't need no stinking checks and balances

On June 13th Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., and House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers, D-Mich., issued subpoenas to two former White House officials compelling them to provide testimony and related information as part of ongoing congressional investigations into the mass firings of well-performing federal prosecutors and the politicization of hiring and firing within the Department of Justice. Today is the deadline for handing over the requested information and the Whitehouse has stated that it will not be complying with the request.
posted by Mr_Zero on Jun 28, 2007 - 105 comments

Following in whose footsteps?

On the heal of her husbands fairly recent op-ed in WSJ, Laura Bush writes her own op-ed (subscription possibly required) about the whole Burma situation (or Myanmar) of all topics. Why did she do it? The Huffington Post speculates.
posted by jourman2 on Jun 20, 2007 - 23 comments

Unpopular premier slams popular press

The UK media is like a "Feral Beast", and is undermining Britain, says Tony Blair. Simon Kelner, editor of The Independent, responds. Some reasons why Blair might not be too keen on the press.
posted by Artw on Jun 12, 2007 - 21 comments

Bush's wristwatch gets nabbed.

President Bush received a hero's welcome on a recent trip to Albania. This has been the first time a serving U.S. President has visited the country, and it's probably the first time a president has had his wristwatch stolen while shaking hands.
posted by hafetysazard on Jun 12, 2007 - 80 comments

How to Restore America's Place in the World

Beyond Bush: What the world needs is an open, confident America. An interesting article from Zakaria Fareed.
posted by chunking express on Jun 6, 2007 - 42 comments

Amis On Blair

Fascinating feature on Blair's farewell tour by Martin Amis. Accompanying video essays. Highlights include a visit to the Green Zone in Baghdad (which "resembles the embassy district of a minor South American capital after a period of immiseration and collapse"), a comparison of Presidential vs. Prime Ministerial motorcades, and a few candid reflections from Blair.
posted by grubby on Jun 2, 2007 - 15 comments

How Now, Mad Cow?

The Bush administration has vowed that it will fight to keep meatpackers from voluntarily testing all of their cows for mad cow disease. Currently, the Agriculture Department tests fewer than 1 percent of slaughtered cows. Creekstone Farms Premium Beef wants to test all of their cows, but larger meat companies have objected, fearing that they might need to test their own cows to stay competitive. The Agriculture Department has also argued that potential false positives could harm the meat industry. Meanwhile, the president, under pressure from the cattle industry, is serving more beef to various visiting foreign statesemen and lamenting that mad cow fears are preventing the Chinese from enjoying American beef: “They need to be eating US beef. It's good for them. They'll like it.” When China rejects our food, shouldn’t we be worried?
posted by kyrademon on May 31, 2007 - 100 comments

Protectng the piece of damn paper.

It's official. On May 9th, Bush issued NSPD 51, an "explicit embrace of what has been since 9/11 an implicit but fairly clear set of assumptions," i.e. George is the Decider and he has decided to strengthen the National Business Continuity Policy within the next 90 days.
posted by and hosted from Uranus on May 24, 2007 - 111 comments

War on Terror Update

The US pays Pakistan $1 billion a year to fight al Qaeda, but Pakistan doesn't do much fighting. Iraq is a "a big moneymaker" for al Qaeda, and al Qaeda's leadership may be stronger than ever.
[more War on Terror inside]
posted by kirkaracha on May 21, 2007 - 76 comments

Is it like having a "drug czar" for the war on drugs -- y'know, only it's for the war on war?

"War Czar" -- another term for "highly paid radio operator"? So the Decider in Chief wants to have a War Czar* in the White House. He appointed Douglas Lute after three other general officers turned him down. Note that Lute, a three-star general, is actually inferior in rank to David Petraeus, the four-star who's commanding the Multi-National Force in Iraq. Black Five had some thoughts on this, as did Jules Crittenden.
posted by pax digita on May 16, 2007 - 77 comments

"I am not the attorney general. That's the attorney general."

Comey made frantic calls to his own chief of staff and to Robert Mueller, then FBI director, while he raced to the hospital, sirens blasting. He sprinted up the stairs of the hospital to get to Ashcroft's room before Gonzales and Card did. . . . "I couldn't stay if the White House was engaging in conduct that had no legal basis." Comey testifies that there was something of a line to resign that day: Mueller; then Comey's chief of staff; and then Ashcroft's chief of staff—who asked only that Comey wait until "Ashcroft was well enough to resign with me."
A Saturday Night Tuesday Morning Massacre narrowly averted by an illness and the Madrid Train Bombings? Is it a High Crime and Misdemeanor if "the president was quite willing to forge ahead with an illegal program"?
Absoluelty riveting, it reads like a tale out of paperback thriller: in a darkened hospital room, a White House consigliere barges past the sick man's wife, and demands the disoriented Attorney General official sign a paper.
"First, they tried to coerce a man in intensive care -- a man so sick he had transferred the reins of power to Mr. Comey -- to grant them legal approval. Having failed, they were willing to defy the conclusions of the nation's chief law enforcement officer and pursue the surveillance without Justice's authorization." I'm waiting for the movie, but you can watch the video now.
posted by orthogonality on May 16, 2007 - 95 comments

Court martial begins for Guantanamo JAG who leaked detainee list

It began with an innocent-looking Valentine's Day card in 2005. Inside the card were several slips of paper, a hastily cut-up printout of names of 550 secret detainees at Guantanamo Bay. The human rights lawyer who received "this weird valentine" handed it over to authorities, and this week the court martial begins for JAG LtCmdr Matthew Diaz, facing 36 years for divulging state secrets.
Whither goest thou, American Jurisprudence?
posted by planetkyoto on May 15, 2007 - 47 comments

The Illustrated Guide to GOP Scandals

The Illustrated Guide to GOP Scandals
posted by trinarian on May 14, 2007 - 44 comments

congressman dennis kucinich has submitted a resolution to impeach VP Dick Cheney on charges of "high crimes and misdemeanors."

impeachy keen! learn why cleveland is the capital of polka, bowling and kielbasa.
posted by quonsar on Apr 26, 2007 - 37 comments

Covers ears "yayayayayaya"

Bush's Mistake and Kennedy's Error. What happens when someone says, "I was wrong"?
posted by Eekacat on Apr 24, 2007 - 14 comments

Bush vs. Congress: the Iraq spending bill

Elizabeth Drew analyzes the current confrontation between the White House and Congress over continued funding for the Iraq war. Under Nancy Pelosi's leadership, Congress has reached an agreement to pass a bill which approves $124 billion in funding for the war, but sets a timetable for withdrawal. Following the passage of the Senate bill in March, Bush gave a more-than-normally petulant speech against the Democratic proposals—prompting Pelosi, like a mother scolding a teenager, to urge Bush to "calm down with the threats" and to "take a deep breath." This was the first public suggestion by a prominent elected figure that the President lacks maturity—a widely held view in Washington.
posted by russilwvong on Apr 24, 2007 - 54 comments

... Karl Rove, a handful of the party's most tech-savvy computer gurus and the former Republican Ohio Secretary of State, created, owned and operated the vote-counting system...

Network Hosting Attorney Scandal E-Mails Also Hosted Ohio's 2004 Election Results --...more than ample documentation to show that on Election Night 2004, Ohio's "official" Secretary of State website -- which gave the world the presidential election results -- was redirected from an Ohio government server to a group of servers that contain scores of Republican web sites, including the secret White House e-mail accounts that have emerged in the scandal surrounding Attorney General Alberto Gonzales's firing of eight federal prosecutors. ...
posted by amberglow on Apr 23, 2007 - 66 comments

He said he didn't feel like he had earned it.

Thomas said he and his wife came up with the unprecedented idea to present the president with the Purple Heart over breakfast one morning a few months ago as they discussed the verbal attacks, both foreign and domestic, the commander in chief has withstood during his time in office. "We feel like emotional wounds and scars are as hard to carry as physical wounds," Thomas said.
posted by EarBucket on Apr 23, 2007 - 136 comments

Little Humor

Rich Little was selected (vid link on that page is dead) to headline the White House Correspondents Dinner this year, no doubt to avoid the kind of controversy created last year's headliner, Stephen Colbert. Seems like it was also a way to avoid any type of humor as well! Although no video of the event is yet available online (as far as I can see), an earlier YouTube video accurately predicted the result. An example: 5 minutes to set up this ancient, unfunny, joke. I wish I was kidding.
posted by The Deej on Apr 21, 2007 - 110 comments

I Love Vermont

I Love Vermont
posted by james_cpi on Apr 20, 2007 - 50 comments

Democrats Tell President War Is Lost

"This is the message I took to the President" US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said today in response to reporters questions about his meeting with President Bush. "I believe myself that this war is lost and that the surge is not accomplishing anything, as indicated by the extreme violence in Iraq yesterday."
posted by Second Account For Making Jokey Comments on Apr 19, 2007 - 94 comments

In Defense Of Foreign Policy Reptiles

Learning From Ike: What a Republican realist could teach George Bush. "If we hope to succeed, we manage evil. We minimize, mitigate, and manipulate evil. But efforts to pre-emptively eliminate evil are prone to end in overreaction and destabilization, with consequences that are often worse than the original problem."
posted by Sticherbeast on Apr 18, 2007 - 36 comments

I may disagree with what you say, so fuck off.

"The president's right to control his own message includes the right to exclude people expressing discordant viewpoints from the audience". (NYT, reg req). More. Lots more
posted by unSane on Apr 16, 2007 - 87 comments

Had enough?

Lee Iacocca has a few thoughts on President Bush.
posted by EarBucket on Apr 13, 2007 - 54 comments

With friends like this ...

"Hello America!" - a message of greeting from the UK by Pat Condell including some nasty truthiness from good old Europe. [MySpace Video]
posted by homodigitalis on Apr 12, 2007 - 22 comments

Stem cell research: Natural Born Killers?

Stem Cell Research: An interesting argument on why Bush's policy on stem cell research doesn't make sense.
posted by Mave_80 on Apr 10, 2007 - 44 comments

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