Chris's Rants

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Keystone Kops -- SNAFU

Misjudgments Marred U.S. Plans for Iraqi Police - New York Times:
Like so much that has defined the course of the war, the realities on the ground in Iraq did not match the planning in Washington. An examination of the American effort to train a police force in Iraq, drawn from interviews with several dozen American and Iraqi officials, internal police reports and visits to Iraqi police stations and training camps, shows a cascading series of misjudgments by White House and Pentagon officials, who repeatedly underestimated the role the United States would need to play in rebuilding the police and generally maintaining order.

Before the war, the Bush administration dismissed as unnecessary a plan backed by the Justice Department to rebuild the police force by deploying thousands of American civilian trainers. Current and former administration officials said they were relying on a Central Intelligence Agency assessment that said the Iraqi police were well trained. The C.I.A. said its assessment conveyed nothing of the sort.
Read the whole article, the incompetence of the clown show that is the White House and civilian Pentagon leadership is without equal.

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Friday, May 19, 2006

Senate Votes English as 'National Language'

Senate Votes English as 'National Language':
After an emotional debate fraught with symbolism, the Senate yesterday voted to make English the 'national language' of the United States, declaring that no one has a right to federal communications or services in a language other than English except for those already guaranteed by law.

The measure, approved 63 to 34, directs the government to 'preserve and enhance' the role of English, without altering current laws that require some government documents and services be provided in other languages. Opponents, however, said it could negate executive orders, regulations, civil service guidances and other multilingual ordinances not officially sanctioned by acts of Congress.
Your tax dollars, at work. It isn't as if there are more compelling matters on which the Senate should be working. You know, minor matters such as energy independence, securing our ports and the deficit.

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Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Enough, already

Just go away - The Boston Globe:
But more than anything else, enough of this rain. Please, please, please, enough of this rain. Why can't it just rain somewhere else instead?
That about sums it up, nicely. Read the whole rant. It's priceless.

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Sunday, May 14, 2006

If only...

Crooks and Liars has the video of last nights SNL intro:
Announcer: And now, a message from the President of the United States.

President Al Gore:

Good evening, my fellow Americans. In 2000 when you overwhelmingly made the decision to elect me as your 43rd president, I knew the road ahead would be difficult. We have accomplished so much yet challenges lie ahead.

In the last 6 years we have been able to stop global warming. No one could have predicted the negative results of this. Glaciers that once were melting are now on the attack. As you know, these renegade glaciers have already captured parts of upper Michigan and northern Maine, but I assure you: we will not let the glaciers win.
It was superb! Go watch.

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Friday, May 12, 2006

Just what we need

Another war.

The Raw Story | US military, intelligence officials raise concern about possible preparations for Iran strike:
Concern is building among the military and the intelligence community that the US may be preparing for a military strike on Iran, as military assets in key positions are approaching readiness, RAW STORY has learned.
I think it is time for the citizens to stand up to these war criminals and say, enough is enough.

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Thursday, May 11, 2006

Free Fallin'

Political Wire: Bush Approval in Free Fall It was inevitable, with polls this week at 31% that another might finally break the 30% barrier. Now one has:
President Bush’s job-approval rating has fallen to its lowest mark of his presidency, according to a new Harris Interactive poll. Of 1,003 U.S. adults surveyed in a telephone poll, 29% think Mr. Bush is doing an “excellent or pretty good” job as president, down from 35% in April and significantly lower than 43% in January.

Roughly one-quarter of U.S. adults say “things in the country are going in the right direction,” while 69% say “things have pretty seriously gotten off on the wrong track.”
With today's revelation that Bush is spying on just about anyone with a phone, not just terrorists, but everyone with an AT&T, Verizon and Bell South account, one can only imagine that the numbers next week will be even worse.

Oh, and that House bill to protect your cell phone records from being sold... it has apparently gone aWol:
Coincidence? Not according to what Representative Markey may be hearing. He wrote to House Speaker Denny Hastert today asking what happened to the bill:
"With no notice or explanation, H.R. 4943 summarily disappeared from the House floor schedule that day and it has not been seen or heard from since. I am concerned about reports that some intelligence agency or interest had a hand in the bill's disappearance. . . Is it currently in some legislative 'Guantanamo Bay'?"
Legislation that no one disagreed with - legislation to protect your cell phone records - suddenly disappears from the House floor on the very day that we find out George Bush is spying on - what? - our phone records!
Something tells me that Gen. Hayden will have a bumpy ride through his confirmation hearings.

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Access Denied

With Access Denied, Justice Department Drops Spying Investigation:
The head of the department's Office of Professional Responsibility, H. Marshall Jarrett, wrote in the letter to Representative Maurice D. Hinchey, Democrat of New York, that "we have been unable to make meaningful progress in our investigation because O.P.R. has been denied security clearances for access to information about the N.S.A. program."

Mr. Jarrett said his office had requested clearances since January, when it began an investigation, and was told on Tuesday that they had been denied. "Without these clearances, we cannot investigate this matter and therefore have closed our investigation," the letter said.

Mr. Hinchey said the denial of clearances was "hard to believe" and compounded what he called a violation of the law by the program itself, which eavesdrops without court warrants on people in the United States suspected of ties to Al Qaeda.
With this administration, it isn't hard to believe at all.

So, let's review. We have the Senate that won't investigate spygate, and now the Justice Dept that can't. That's just great.

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Thursday, May 04, 2006

Truthiness and Consequences

Truthiness and Consequences:
This president has crossed so many lines during his nearly six years in office that it's insulting to make me find all the necessary hyperlinks to illustrate my case.
Read the whole post.

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Two perspectives

The fact that Colbert's performance is still being discussed 6 days later is a testament to its effectiveness. Here's a perspective on the matter that I believe is spot on -- Stephen Colbert and the Death of "The Room":
In other words, what anyone fails to get who said Colbert bombed because he didn't win over the room is: the room no longer matters. Not the way it used to. The room, which once would have received and filtered the ritual performance for the rest of us, is now just another subject to be dissected online. Colbert—as he might say on The Colbert Report—'gets it.' So does his patron, Jon Stewart, who similarly was said to have bombed at the Oscars because he turned off the stars in the theater with a snide performance that was much funnier to the (much bigger and more relevant) audience at home.

All of this, in other words, is yet another sign of how authority is fragmented and democratized in the Internet era—the top-down authority to assess and interpret for the masses that used to be much of the raison d'etre of the room. So if the room wasn't too amused by Colbert Saturday night, you'll have to excuse them. They don't have as much to laugh about anymore.
And then, there are the wankers like Cohen, who simply don't get it for exactly the reason cited in the Tim piece above.

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Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Thank you

Here's a website -- Thank You Stephen Colbert -- where you can leave a thank you note to Stephen Colbert for his in-your-face evisceration of Shrubya, Shooter, Snowjob and the media syncophants at the WH Correspondent's Dinner Saturday evening. It is at 34,000 and counting.

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Monday, May 01, 2006

Let the Swiftboating Begin!

The Raw Story | ABC: Homeland Inspector General says he was pressured to 'tone down' criticism of Bush before election:
The former inspector general for the Department of Homeland Security says he was pressured to tone down criticism of security failures in the months before the 2004 Presidential election, ABC NEWS is reporting.
He will be painted as a disgruntled former employee, just as Richard Clarke and Paul O'Neil were, but the consistency of the message is so overwhelming it just has to be sinking in with the great unwashed. That, combined with the disaster that was the katrina response makes this story even more credible.

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  • LARRY BAILEY (BOOTMURTHA.COM) OCTOBER 1ST RALLY IN JOHNSTOWN, PA.

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    CONTACT: Cliff Hancuff
    September 29, 2006 Journalismisflat@aol.com



    "American troops could be home now, except for critical mistakes by our current Commander in Chief," charges Cliff Hancuff, Director of The World of Journalism Is Flat, Too.

    "Media and right-wing bloggers are ignoring this fact. For weeks I have been challenging political activists and journalists to act with a minimum of ethical standards," continued Hancuff.

    "I became involved when the Sun-Sentinel in Florida reported that Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.) said the U.S. poses the top threat to world peace. I watched in dismay as the media and bloggers worldwide reported on this misquote."

    "My involvement continued when I discovered Diana Irey, John Murtha's political opponent, had attacked Murtha using a fictional quote attributed to Abraham Lincoln."

    "Larry Bailey of bootmurtha.com is continuing his three year blind support of our current Commander in Chief's incompetence in war. President Bush declared war in Iraq without the 4th Infantry, our most lethal, modern, and deployable heavy division in the world," added Hancuff.

    This mistake lead to the atrocity of Al Qaqaa. Iraqi insurgents stole hundreds of tons of high explosives to be used as weaponry.

    "These are the explosives being used by Iraqi insurgents and al Qaeda to perpetuate the war in Iraq."

    "I am distressed that the same issues ignored by Swift Boat Veterans for Truth in 2004 are being ignored again in 2006," said Hancuff adding, "Americans, American soldiers and their families deserve better."

    "Without these critical mistakes made by our current Commander in Chief, our American troops would be home with their loved ones, with honor, right now."

    On October 1, 2006 Hancuff be at the Cambria County War Memorial Arena located in Johnstown Pennsylvania for Larry Bailey's Swiftboating of John Murtha rally. It is there Hancuff will continue his wait for Mr. Bailey to recall the values of honor and integrity taught him by our US Navy.

    There is a youtube.com video online at:

    YouTube - Rovian Architecture Unplugged

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d5jcyHokFyE


    The World of Journalism Is Flat, Too

    -30-

    By Blogger chancuff, at September 29, 2006 7:08 PM  

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