Chris's Rants

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Straight-talk Express

Soldier Suicides at Record Level
Whiteside's personal tragedy is part of an alarming phenomenon in the Army's ranks: Suicides among active-duty soldiers in 2007 reached their highest level since the Army began keeping such records in 1980, according to a draft internal study obtained by The Washington Post. Last year, 121 soldiers took their own lives, nearly 20 percent more than in 2006.

At the same time, the number of attempted suicides or self-inflicted injuries in the Army has jumped sixfold since the Iraq war began. Last year, about 2,100 soldiers injured themselves or attempted suicide, compared with about 350 in 2002, according to the U.S. Army Medical Command Suicide Prevention Action Plan.

It is criminal that Bush and Cheney are still not incarcerated for taking the country to war on false pretenses. If there is a god, then they'll certainly roast in hell for their actions (or in the case of the PTSD suffering troops returning from extended deployments in Iraq, inactions).

Meanwhile, the Straight-talk Express chugs right along with it's "Less Jobs, More Wars" mantra, even saying that "it would be fine with me" to have troops in Iraq for 100 years.

I watched the Republican debate last night, and the only applause line of the night was for Ron Paul, who remarked that the debate was focused on minor technicalities between two candidates who backed the same insane policy of supporting and continuing an immoral and illegal war.

I only hope that McCain keeps shooting his mouth off about "victory" in Iraq, because nearly 70% of the country oppose that position. Let's hope that he keeps the Straight-talk Express headed straight for the unemployment line.


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Wednesday, January 30, 2008


This NYT editorial is possibly the harshest I've read from the editors towards BushCo's unconstitutional behavior.
Just before Monday night’s State of the Union speech, in which Mr. Bush extolled bipartisanship, railed against government excesses and promised to bring the troops home as soon as it’s safe to withdraw, the White House undermined all of those sentiments with the latest of the president’s infamous signing statements.
Over the last seven years, Mr. Bush has issued hundreds of these insidious documents declaring that he had no intention of obeying a law that he had just signed. This is not just constitutional theory. Remember the detainee treatment act, which Mr. Bush signed and then proceeded to ignore, as he told C.I.A. interrogators that they could go on mistreating detainees?
The first provision created a commission to determine how reliant the government is on contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan, how much waste, fraud and abuse has occurred and what has been done to hold accountable those who are responsible. Congress authorized the commission to compel government officials to testify.

Perhaps this violated Mr. Bush’s sense of his power to dole out contracts as he sees fit and to hold contractors harmless. The same theory applies to the second provision that Mr. Bush said he would not obey: a new law providing protection against reprisal to those who expose waste, fraud or abuse in wartime contracts.
Frankly, of the four provisions that Dubya has chosen to ignore, this is, to me, the most insidious. He is basically saying to the nation: "fuck you all... I'm gonna let Haliburton siphon off all the cash they can while I am in office... and those whistle-blowers? They'd better think twice on my watch."

This administration is so counter to the principles we hold dear, it isn't funny. They deserve to be hounded to the gates of hell, in McCain's words, for their deeds. I only hope that the next administration doesn't give Bush and Cheney a pass, but holds them accountable for their actions that have so nearly destroyed the very nation that they supposedly serve.


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Saturday, January 26, 2008

Finally, MSM wakes up to the truth

The FISA Follies, Redux (emphasis mine):
Mr. Bush says without amnesty, the government won’t get cooperation in the future. We don’t buy it. The real aim is to make sure the full story of the illegal wiretapping never comes out in court.

The NYT editorial board finally grows a spine. FWIW, I'm glad that this is coming to light, finally.

This salient point has been widely understood here in East Blogistan, but it has been largely ignored (or, likely buried) by the MSM. Hence, your average citizen doesn't really appreciate what is at stake.

  1. The CheneyBush administration violated the law
  2. The only way that this can be proven is via the courts, through civil suits against the telcos that perpetrated the administration's dirty work
  3. Giving the telcos retroactive immunity effectively shuts off any avenues to hold the administration accountable for their illegal acts

It has to be pretty clear that this is not about improving the FISA legislation, "to keep America safe from terrorists". If that were the case, then clearly, Bush wouldn't be threatening to veto any new legislation, simply because it didn't grant retroactive immunity. This is all about CYA for the criminal enterprise that currently occupies the White House.


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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

I can't believe we are even having this discussion

House Passes Restrictions on Interrogation Methods
Defying a veto threat from President Bush, the House of Representatives voted Thursday to prohibit waterboarding and other harsh interrogation methods used by the Central Intelligence Agency against high-level prisoners from Al Qaeda.

Point one: torture is already illegal, and waterboarding is, by definition, torture.

Point two: see point one.

Just about the entire Repblican caucus voted for torture.

I'd be curious to see what Sen. McCain has to say on that score. More than likely, there will be precious little coverage of this on the news coverage (if you can call it that) by the MSM... afterall, Heath Ledger is dead, didn't you hear! This is BREAKING NEWS! This is clearly IMPORTANT.


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