Friday, March 03, 2006

Shorter reaction to two sorta related stories: For the love of all that's holy, STOP TEACHING OUR CHILDREN!

Bush goes on 'trial' in Morris

Teacher on leave after comments

Dear George Orwell,

Sorry, man. We didn't listen to you. You tried, though. You tried to tell us what could happen. We just got too wrapped up in meaningless shit, and only a relative few were paying enough attention to see what was happening.

The government also said that the chair had never been used for punishment and that it had been designed "for the detainee's comfort and protection."

It's been a long time since I read the book. Did you anticipate that people would still believe in their virtue and morality, after the government had befouled it? I seem to remember it being more about fear and nationalism. Our world is more about trivia and being willingly oblivious.

Anyway, I have a day job that I have to get back to. Just saw this article and thought of you. So again, I'm sorry.


Thursday, March 02, 2006

I don't need to add anything to the commentary about the video evidence of Bubble Boy's asshole-ery.

I would like to steal something from Froomkin, though:

Apparently as a rejoinder to the new video, the White House yesterday suddenly sent around a transcript that it previously said didn't exist, from a conference call on the following day. It includes a second-hand account of Bush's activities from Michael Brown, the Bush-appointed FEMA director who later resigned in disgrace, describing the president as engaged, watching TV and asking questions.

(Emphasis added.)

Kinda puts the lie to all those claims of Executive privilege, don't it?


Uh-oh. More Froomkin:

Faced with challenges like these -- an attack on our nation or a natural disaster bearing down on our shores -- we can reasonably expect that our presidents will stand up, demand answers and options, and lead.

Someone alert Debbie Howell - can you believe how liberal that statement is? I sure hope that kind of crazy talk is labeled as "opinion"!!!
Posted this as a comment at Digby's place. Am re-posting it here, as I am too lazy to come up with a new thought for this space.

Intelligence agencies warned about growing local insurgency in late 2003

"This was stuff the White House and the Pentagon did not want to hear," the former official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. "They were constantly grumbling that the people who were writing these kind of downbeat assessments `needed to get on the team,' `were not team players' and were `sitting up there (at CIA headquarters) in Langley sucking their thumbs.'"

Even though the writing at PowerTools makes my eyes and brain glaze over, I have seen enough to know that they are of the opinion delusion that the CIA has been actively trying to make Bush look bad. Through leaks or, I don't know, logical thought, or whatever.

After reading this Knight Ridder article, I think that the Tools need to take it a step further. They need to consider whether or not the CIA has been actively funding and arming the insurgency. It's the next illogical conclusion.

If they weren't "on the team," then they must have been on the "other team," right? And maybe they really were on the other team, not just rooting for them? And those IED's must have come from somewhere! The C f*ing I A!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Because the next generation of think tank whores need letters after their name, federal student aid will now be available to virtual colleges.

Online Colleges Receive a Boost From Congress

It took just a few paragraphs in a budget bill for Congress to open a new frontier in education: Colleges will no longer be required to deliver at least half their courses on a campus instead of online to qualify for federal student aid.


But commercial colleges found a sympathetic ear in the administration and Congress in their quest to remove the 50 percent rule. Representatives Boehner and McKeon sponsored the measure.


While the $1.8 million that executives of the largest chains of proprietary colleges and their political action committees have donated to federal candidates since 2000 is not huge by Washington standards, the money is strategically donated.

About a fifth — $313,000 — went to Mr. Boehner and McKeon and political action committees they control, according to figures provided by the Center for Responsive Politics, which monitors campaign finances.

Your Republican Congress: Boosting American education by enabling bogus diplomas.

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

A column so stupid, it deserves at least two posts

Cohen again.

That Bush has done this should come as no surprise. As a bigot he leaves a lot to be desired. He has refused to pander to anti-immigration forces, and shortly after Sept. 11, if you will remember, he visited Washington's Islamic Center. He reassured American Muslims and the worldwide Islamic community that neither America nor its government were waging war on an entire people.

Then he invaded Iraq. (Emphasis added.)
U.S. Is Settling Detainee's Suit in 9/11 Sweep

Mr. Elmaghraby, who spent nearly a year in detention, and the Pakistani man, Javaid Iqbal, held for nine months, charged that while shackled they were kicked and punched until they bled. Their lawsuit said they were cursed as terrorists and subjected to multiple unnecessary body-cavity searches, including one in which correction officers inserted a flashlight into Mr. Elmaghraby's rectum, making him bleed.


The government had argued that the lawsuits should be dismissed without testimony because the extraordinary circumstances of the terror attacks justified extraordinary measures to confine noncitizens who fell under suspicion, and because top officials need governmental immunity to combat future threats to national security without fear of being sued.

Your honor, we must have the ability, in the course of our investigations, to shove a flashlight up a man's ass. In the absence of anal probing, we are all at greater risk.
I never knew how racist the Coast Guard is.

Coast Guard Had Concerns About Ports Deal, Papers Show

Coast Guard intelligence officials in December raised the possibility of significant security risks associated with the management of some United States port operations by a Dubai company, saying in a previously undisclosed document that broad "intelligence gaps" prevented them from even assessing the risks.

(Updated to add the idiotic Cohen link.)

Monday, February 27, 2006

I am terribly excited about the prospect of the coming weeks, months, years of the ever-popular semantic game, "What's a Conservative?"

Except for the part where it doesn't matter.

Krugman says:

That's a fundamental misreading of what's happening to American society. What we're seeing isn't the rise of a fairly broad class of knowledge workers. Instead, we're seeing the rise of a narrow oligarchy: income and wealth are becoming increasingly concentrated in the hands of a small, privileged elite.