Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The sun won't shine as brightly tomorrow.

She was one of the first columnists that Stash read regularly. The load just got heavier for everyone else.

Syndicated columnist Molly Ivins dies at 62

AUSTIN, Texas - Best-selling author and columnist Molly Ivins, the sharp-witted liberal who skewered the political establishment and referred to President Bush as “Shrub,” died Wednesday after a long battle with breast cancer. She was 62.

David Pasztor, managing editor of the Texas Observer, confirmed her death.

The writer, who made a living poking fun at Texas politicians, whether they were in her home base of Austin or the White House, revealed in early 2006 that she was being treated for breast cancer for the third time.


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Friday, January 26, 2007

Begala on Cheney

PAUL BEGALA, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Really, it's stunning. It's a great interview, and -- because we saw the real Dick Cheney, you know, a really remarkable, probably historic, combination of arrogance, incompetence and dishonesty.

This is a man who, when he took office, Richard Clarke, the chief counterterrorism czar, told him that bin Laden was going to try to attack America. He ignored it. The president told him to chair a task force on terrorism. He refused to even convene it until after 9/11. He was too busy helping his friends at Enron and Exxon with his energy task force.

He told the country that Iraq was an imminent threat. He was wrong. He told us that they had a nuclear program -- he was wrong -- biological stockpiles, chemical stockpiles, that there were links to al Qaeda, that there were secret meetings between Mohamed Atta, the leader of the hijacking ring that attacked us on 9/11, and Saddam Hussein's government; they had a secret meeting in Prague. That was a fabrication as well -- on and on.

It really is staggering, the -- the level of this man's mendacity and arrogance, in the face -- if he had any decency, he would simply resign, Wolf. He would give you an interview. He would say: You know, I give up.

BLITZER: He was...

BEGALA: I have ruined -- I have ruined the country in my first term. I'm ruining the world in my second term.

BLITZER: He -- he...

BEGALA: I'm out.

BLITZER: In fairness to the vice president, he was twice elected by the American people to get...

BEGALA: He was once elected.


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Thursday, January 18, 2007

"Now is the time!"

Kennedy On Opposing Escalation: "Now is the time, this is the moment"

In a conference call with bloggers and activists Wednesday, Senator Ted Kennedy (D-MA) spelled out his Senate bill to legislatively stop the Bush-McCain Doctrine of escalating the Iraq war, saying "we have to try to get this resolution done expeditiously" and urging his Senate colleagues to step up to the plate and speak out for the majority of Americans.

"Now is the time, this is the moment for Congressional action to begin to bring this war to an end," said Kennedy, on a call sponsored by a coalition of Progressive activist groups.

Kennedy has introduced legislation that would essentially nullify the original Iraq war resolution -- which he voted against in 2002 -- and declare it obsolete based on a review of the three main components of that measure.

"It said that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq -- there were not," said Kennedy, adding also that the second provision, Saddam Hussein's violation of U.N. resolutions, is obviously "no longer applicable."

"There was [allegedly] an operational relationship between al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein -- that was dismissed in the 9/11 [Commission] report," said Kennedy.

"What my amendment does is it says you have to come back to the Congress to get authorization for increasing the manpower and increasing the resources that are going to be necessary to support that manpower -- and it will give the Congress of the United States an opportunity to vote yes or no on that resolution."

Christopher Dodd (D-CT), who has introduced similar legislation -- that does not rely on cutting off funding for the "troop surge" -- agrees entirely with Kennedy that the original war resolution is null and void, saying Wednesday that it "is no longer relevant in my view."

And, according to Kennedy, his legislation must be acted upon quickly because in the three months it will take to get a request for a "supplemental" appropriation for the war effort and have the Appropriations Committee process it, the troops will already be over there.

"The issue then is entirely different. The issue then is are we going to deny support for troops who have already been sent over there and are battling over there daily?" said Kennedy, in explaining his call for a prompt vote. "We have to try to get this resolution done expeditiously. And we're talking within a week or the next 10 days -- prior to the time that they start to send troops over."

Meanwhile, the White House says that Kennedy's bill is moot because they already have the money to pay for a troop escalation and thus do not need additional funds from Congress to move the plan forward.

Whether or not that's true, Kennedy's measure combines with Dodd's initiative and a non-binding, anti-surge resolution that also has the strong support of Chuck Hagel (R-NE), to send a message to Bush that a Democratic Congress officially ends the near monarchy he has enjoyed for the last few years.

More at

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Saturday, January 13, 2007

We still need more like Phil!

I'm not sure how this escaped my view the first time, but it deserves more attention. Watch again as Phil Donahue kicks O'Reilly's Ass!

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Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The lay of the land

There will be a vote on Bush's Plan to escalate his war in Iraq.

I caught this on Talking Points Memo that Republican officials conceded that at least 10 of their own senators were likely to oppose the plan to increase troops levels in Iraq. And Democrats were proposing their resolution with that in mind, hoping to send a forceful message that as many as 60 senators believed strengthening American forces in Baghdad was the wrong approach. Democratic leaders said they expect all but a few of their senators to back the resolution.

We need to keep track of those that support this disastrous move and those that are up for re-election in 2008.

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Friday, January 05, 2007

1/4/2007 - What a Day!

After 12 years in the wilderness, the Democrats are back.

Nancy Pelosi becomes the first female Speaker of the House.

Hastert out on his fat ass.

Does life get better?

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Wednesday, January 03, 2007

A New Goal: To make this list!

From Right Wing News

The Top Twenty Most Annoying Liberals of 2006

1. Keith Olbermann
2. Jimmy Carter
3. The New York Times
4. Cindy Sheehan
5. Cynthia McKinney
6. John Kerry
7. The View
8. Charles Rangel
9. Markos Moulitsas Zuniga
10. Al Gore
11. Jason Leopold/ Truthout
12. Mke Malloy
13. Nancy Pelosi
14. Ted Rall
15. The Dixie Chicks
16. Andrew Sullivan
17. David Gregory
18. John Murtha
19. The Smirking Chimp
20. Harry Belafonte

Congrats to these winners.

OK, the truth be known.... I still don't think of either Jack Murtha or Andrew Sullivan as liberals; don't have a clue about Ted Rall; and would refuse to belong to any club that would have Cynthia McKinney as a member.

But, other than that... pretty cool!

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A Lynching...

Baghdad Burning's account of the Saddam's execution:

It's official. Maliki and his people are psychopaths. This really is a new low. It's outrageous- an execution during Eid. Muslims all over the world (with the exception of Iran) are outraged. Eid is a time of peace, of putting aside quarrels and anger- at least for the duration of Eid.

This does not bode well for the coming year. No one imagined the madmen would actually do it during a religious holiday. It is religiously unacceptable and before, it was constitutionally illegal. We thought we'd at least get a few days of peace and some time to enjoy the Eid holiday, which coincides with the New Year this year. We've spent the first two days of a holy holiday watching bits and pieces of a sordid lynching.

America the savior… After nearly four years and Bush's biggest achievement in Iraq has been a lynching. Bravo Americans.

Maliki has made the mistake of his life. His signature and unhidden glee at the whole execution, especially on the first day of Eid Al Adha (the Eid where millions of Muslims make a pilgrimage to Mecca), will only do more to damage his already tattered reputation. He's like a vulture in a suit (or a balding weasel). It's almost embarrassing. I kept expecting Muwafaq Al Rubaii to run over and wipe the drool from the corner of his mouth as he signed for the execution. Are these the people who represent the New Iraq? We're in so much more trouble than I ever thought.

And no- not the celebrations BBC are claiming. With the exception of a few areas, the streets are empty.

Now we come to CNN. Shame on you CNN journalists- you're getting lazy. The least you can do is get the last words correct when you write a story about an execution. Your articles are read the world over and will go down in history as references. You people are the biggest news network in the world- the least you can do is spend some money on a decent translator. Saddam's last words were NOT "Muqtada Al Sadr" as Munir Haddad claimed, according to the article below. If anyone had seen at least part of the video they showed on TV, you'd know that.

"A witness, Iraqi Judge Munir Haddad, said that one of the executioners told Hussein that the former dictator had destroyed Iraq, which sparked an argument that was joined by several government officials in the room.

As a noose was tightened around Hussein's neck, one of the executioners yelled "long live Muqtada al-Sadr," Haddad said, referring to the powerful anti-American Shiite religious leader.

Hussein, a Sunni, uttered one last phrase before he died, saying "Muqtada al-Sadr" in a mocking tone, according to Haddad's account."

From the video that was leaked, it was not an executioner who yelled "long live Muqtada al-Sadr". See, this is another low the Maliki government sunk to- they had some hecklers conveniently standing by during the execution. Maliki claimed they were "some witnesses from the trial", but they were, very obviously, hecklers. The moment the noose was around Saddam's neck, they began chanting, in unison, "God's prayers be on Mohamed and on Mohamed's family…" Something else I didn't quite catch (but it was very coordinated), and then "Muqtada, Muqtada, Muqtada!" One of them called out to Saddam, "Go to hell…" (in Arabic). Saddam looked down disdainfully and answered "Heya hay il marjala…?" which is basically saying, "Is this your manhood…?".

Someone half-heartedly called out to the hecklers, "I beg you, I beg you- the man is being executed!" They were slightly quieter and then Saddam stood and said, "Ashadu an la ilaha ila Allah, wa ashhadu ana Mohammedun rasool Allah…" Which means, "I witness there is no god but Allah and that Mohammed is His messenger." These are the words a Muslim (Sunnis and Shia alike) should say on their deathbed. He repeated this one more time, very clearly, but before he could finish it, he was lynched.

So, no, CNN, his last words were not "Muqtada Al Sadr" in a mocking tone- just thought someone should clear that up. (Really people, six of you contributed to that article!)

Then again, one could argue that it was a judge who gave them that false information. A judge on the Iraqi appeals court- one of the judges who ratified the execution order. Everyone knows Iraqi judges under American tutelage never lie- that explains CNN's confusion.

Muwafaq Al Rubai was said he was "weak and frightened". Apparently, Rubai saw a different lynching because according to the video they leaked, he didn't look frightened at all. His voice didn't shake and he refused to put on the black hood. He looked resigned to his fate, and during the heckling he looked as defiant as ever. (It's quite a contrast to Muhsin Abdul Hameed's public hysterics last year when the Americans raided his home.)

It's one thing to have militias participating in killings. This is allegedly the democracy the Americans flaunt. Is this how bloodthirsty and frightening we've become? Is this what Iraq stands for now? Executions? I'm sure the rest of the Arab countries will be impressed.

One of the most advanced countries in the world did not help to reconstruct Iraq, they didn't even help produce a decent constitution. They did, however, contribute nicely to a kangaroo court and a lynching. A lynching shall go down in history as America's biggest accomplishment in Iraq. So who's next? Who hangs for the hundreds of thousands who've died as a direct result of this war and occupation? Bush? Blair? Maliki? Jaffari? Allawi? Chalabi?

2006 has definitely been representative of Maliki and his government- killings like never before and a lynching to end it properly. Death and destruction everywhere. I'm so tired of all of this…

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Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Holy crap!

Surge and Sacrifice.

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