9.30.2005

A Way Forward (2)


So Russ Feingold's thinking of running for preznut as an anti-war candidate. The Senator has a fine voting record. I could support him under two conditions: (1) he moves from his "set a timetable/be out in 15 months" thingy to a "this is fucked/be out in the morning" stand on Iraq; (2) he gets out of Dumbocratic Party and runs as a Populist.

Here's a lengthy excerpt from CounterPunch's Dave Lindorf, "Spineless, Tired and Uninspired: What Opposition Party?":
Iraq War going to hell, with U.S casualties approaching 2000 dead and 25,000 wounded, at a cost of $200 billion and rising.

Poverty in America on the rise in a period of supposed economic growth.

Republican Party a cesspool of corruption.

White House being investigated for outing undercover CIA agent.

Abortion rights under serious threat, with the Supreme Court being packed with right-wing judges.

New Orleans, just drying out from disastrous flood, being raped by White House-linked corporate pirates and scam artists.

Budget deficit topping half trillion dollars.

Gas and heating oil crisis looming, while oil companies reap record profits.

Bush poll numbers hit historic low as even some Republicans abandon him as an incompetent.

Oh yeah-all this and global warming and the end of human life as we know it.

Man, if you were an opposition politician looking to make a run for Congress next years, or for president in 2008, this would be a magical time.

But where's the opposition?

The media tell us that the leading candidates for the Democratic nomination for president in 2008 are Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Bill Richardson and maybe John Kerry. What all these people have in common is their deafening silence on all the issues of importance facing Americans and America.

Not one dared show her or his face at the record demonstration against the Iraq War held in front of the White House last weekend.

None has spoken out on the Republican corruption scandals.

None has called for a public program to hire all the displaced of New Orleans to put them to work rebuilding the destroyed city. Instead, they are allowing Bush and the Republican Congress, with the acquiescence of Louisiana's corrupt local Democratic Party, to bring in speculators and the same profiteers who have been sucking up the reconstruction money in Iraq.

None has offered a plan to attack the U.S. deficit and the hollowing out of the American economy.

None of these "leading opposition candidates" has even taken any kind of strong stand on global warming-for example calling for a tax surcharge on low-mileage cars and trucks and strict limits on carbon emissions by power plants plus a crash program to develop alternative energy sources.

The truth is that when it comes to the Democratic Party, the purported opposition party, there is no there there. It no longer exists . . .

9.29.2005

22 Traitors


Baucus (D-MT)
Bingaman (D-NM)
Byrd (D-WV)
Carper (D-DE)
Conrad (D-ND)
Dodd (D-CT)
Dorgan (D-ND)
Jeffords (I-VT)
Johnson (D-SD)
Kohl (D-WI)
Landrieu (D-LA)
Leahy (D-VT)
Levin (D-MI)
Lieberman (D-CT)
Lincoln (D-AR)
Murray (D-WA)
Nelson (D-FL)
Nelson (D-NE)
Pryor (D-AR)
Rockefeller (D-WV)
Salazar (D-CO)
Wyden (D-OR)

This is old, but it's a damn good read: "What is Progressive?" by Andrew Garib, Campus Progress, posted in July at AlterNet. Clip:
The first key to understanding progressivism is that it's not the same as liberalism, as many might assume. "Progressivism is an orientation towards politics," Halpin said in an interview with Campus Progress. "It's not a long-standing ideology like liberalism, but an historically-grounded concept ... that accepts the world as dynamic." Progressivism is not an ideology at all, but an attitude towards the world of politics that is far less black-and-white than conservatism or liberalism, breaking free from the false and divisive dichotomy of liberal vs. conservative that has dominated American politics for too long.

Said simply (perhaps oversimplifying), American liberalism is an ideology grounded in traditionally liberal American values: individual freedom, democratic government, freedom of thought and belief, and equal opportunity. Government intervention is generally seen as the solution to society's problem.

Progressivism, on the other hand, is far more flexible than any one ideology. Traditionally, conservatives see the world, especially human nature, as predictable and static. Liberals are often burdened with endless optimism - a belief that all problems can be solved through implementing utopian visions (especially through government intervention).

Progressives aren't simply liberals; progressives see the world for what it is, accept it as ever-changing and dynamic, and choose the best course of action in line with decidedly American values.

A way forward

Being convinced that both the Republican and Democratic parties are fully under the control of decidedly counter-democratic forces, I have concluded that the only "within the system" alternative for true progressive populists is involvement in The Populist Party of America.



 

I strongly encourage sitting progressive Congresspeople and Senators who are presently strong and secure in their seats to renounce their current party affiliations and align with this emerging party.

I especially encourage disaffected members of the Congressional Black Caucus to step up and raise their voices high against the malignant meandering of the Democratic Party. Note excerpts from "Who is serving who? Congressional Black Caucus Chief rejects need to account" at The Black Commentator:
There is something very wrong going on in the Congressional Black Caucus. However, the malady has a long history. A class of Black politicians think that we exist to support them, rather than that they are elected to support us.

The sickness became acute at the CBC Weekend, in Washington, DC – as much a social occasion as a political one. The newly formed CBC Monitor had circulated hundreds of Report Cards, that showed seven members had earned the distinction of “Derelicts of the Black Caucus.” The “derelicts” had voted against the interests of their constituents – the people who voted them into office – in favor of the corporate agenda pushed by the Republican Party. At the top of the list were Rep. Harold Ford, Jr, of Memphis, and David Scott, of suburban Atlanta. Riding right behind them on the corporate money train were Representatives Sanford Bishop (D-GA), Albert Wynn (D-MD), Artur Davis (D-AL), Gregory Meeks (D-NY), and William Jefferson (D-LA). All had crossed over to the Republican side of the aisle on a number of key economic issues, including the bankruptcy bill that threatens to further impoverish Black communities that are already encircled by predatory lending agencies . . .

The fact is, the CBC is broken, and cannot make a decision that represents the Consensus of the Black community, because it is infested by corporate money. Watt denies that economic issues, which were the basis of the CBC Report Card, are key Black issues. Watt told the CBC Monitor’s Leutisha Stills that “the bankruptcy bill or CAFTA wasn’t going to have the effect on the Black community as been perceived.”

What Mel Watt and an apparent consensus of the CBC’s leadership (not its members) have seemed to decide, is that no position can be taken if there is no unanimity. That means that any corporate whore who gets bought can stop the machinery. If this remains the norm, there is no reason for a Congressional Black Caucus. In fact, there is a need for split that would allow the truly progressive Members to act.


Wall?? What wall?



Thanks to Bill at thoughts on the eve . . . for this one.

9.27.2005

So many wars, so little time

Since I'm not Atrios or Kos, who seem to be able to stay on top of pretty much everything, sometimes the news hits me like a stalled Cat 5 megastorm. The past month has been like that.

So, to review and summarize a bit, 'cuz in the mainline stream media, Iraq (except for Abu Ghraib), Katrina, Palestine, and Darfur are already ancient history . . .

from "The Impending Cakewalk in Iran" by Mike Whitney at ICH:
"Top-ranking Americans have told equally top-ranking Indians in recent weeks that the US has plans to invade Iran before Bush's term ends. In 2002, a year before the US invaded Iraq, high-ranking Americans had similarly shared their definitive vision of a post-Saddam Iraq, making it clear that they would change the regime in Baghdad." Calcutta Telegraph 9-25-05

The UN's nuclear watchdog agency, the IAEA, officially signed Iran's death-warrant yesterday. By passing a US-backed resolution that refers Iran's nuclear program to the Security Council, the member states have endorsed America's genocidal Middle East policy and paved the way for another war. Even though Tal Afar, Samara and other civilian enclaves are still under a withering attack from American forces, and even though reports of rampant prisoner abuse and torture continue to surface around Falluja, and even though increasing numbers of young Sunni men, who've been beaten and shot in the back of the head, are being fished from the Euphrates River every day; the sycophantic Euro-allies have thrown their support behind a resolution that will unavoidably lead to another war. Everyone who signed on to this treacherous pact is equally culpable of the misery it will inevitably produce.

Behind the fraudulent rhetoric and grand gestures for peace, the former colonial powers, Germany, France and England, have bonded with the Master-state to plunder and occupy the resource-rich world beyond their borders. They'll be knocking the cobwebs off the pith-helmets and jodhpurs in jolly-England as they join the campaign to strip another unsuspecting nation of their natural wealth and subjugate their people . . .

The EU's participation in this charade tells us that the global oil shortfall is even more severe than most people imagine. In just 5 years, all of the existing reserves of world oil will begin trending downward; falling well short of growing demand. Much of the current research indicates that Saudi Arabia is drying up as well; leaving western economies at the mercy of Teheran, Baghdad and Caracas. Despite the phony bluster about "free trade", Bush and co. have no intention of sacrificing American supremacy to something as fickle as the market. Nor do they plan to allow the global economic system to slip into foreign control by entrusting the world's most valuable resource to the dubious rulers in Iraq and Iran; not while they have an endless supply of laser-guided missiles and bunker-busting munitions.

The handwriting is on the wall. It's just a matter of whether Iran "will go peacefully into that good night" or not. The ground has already been cleared for another larcenous crusade; another monstrous, unprovoked aggression against a peaceful nation. The red-herring of "non-compliance" will be brandished to the world while Washington gears up for its next bloody campaign. The plan to reshape the Middle East is moving forward at breakneck-speed and unsuspecting Iran just entered the imperial crosshairs.

Fasten your seatbelts for another savage cakewalk.


from "Where Was Dick Cheney During Katrina?" by Black Commentator's Margaret Kimberley:
Where was Dick Cheney? In the days following the devastation wrought by hurricane Katrina, the Vice President of the United States became the invisible man . . .

In recognition of that lack of information, here is a multiple-choice quiz designed to help solve the mystery.

What did Dick Cheney do during the hurricane Katrina catastrophe?

a. Nabbed yet another no bid contract for Halliburton

b. Planned nuclear war against Iran

c. Helped John Bolton destroy the United Nations

d. Reminded Judith Miller to keep quiet

e. Stole the wages of workers in the Gulf

f. Had a heart attack and/or knee aneurism

All of these responses may be true, and only some may be true. We will never know and therein lies a huge problem for our country. It is an understatement to say that the Bushmen operate without transparency. They will tell us what they want, when they want, if they want . . .

He was CEO of the Halliburton Corporation, the recipient of billions of dollars in taxpayer money for the so-called reconstruction of Iraq. Despite getting huge amounts of cash, Halliburton and other war profiteers have been unable to keep the lights on or the water running in Baghdad.

Not only does Cheney make sure that his people get paid, he has made sure that he gets paid too. Despite his claims of having no financial interest in Halliburton he continues to receive $150,000 per year in “deferred salary” while also maintaining 433,333 unexercised stock options.

The New Orleans levees had barely broken when Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg Brown and Root scored yet another federal government contract and got its hands on more of our money. The story was that it wasn’t really a new contract, just part of an existing contract with the navy. The defense seems to be that it was old corruption, not new corruption.

After getting more money for crony capitalism reconstruction, the second item on the agenda was to make sure that workers got very little of it. Bush suspended the Davis-Bacon Act, which mandates that prevailing wages apply in public works projects. Leave it to the Bushmen to take money from desperate people when they need it the most . . .

Perhaps it isn’t necessary to know where Cheney was in late August and early September. Whatever his location we know exactly what he was doing. He made sure that the business of using government as a private sector cash cow went on as usual. He made sure that while he and his friends got paid, the rest of us got nothing but the shaft.


from Editor & Publisher comes "Katrina Redux? Beaumont Paper Finds Federal Storm Failure in Texas":
In Beaumont, Texas, claims that federal relief agencies learned their lessons from Hurricane Katrina and are on the ball in the aftermath of Hurricane Rita are apparently ringing hollow. The Beaumont (Tex.) Enterprise reported tonight that disaster response coordinators in the area hard hit by Rita say they are seeing the same foot-dragging federal response this weekend witnessed two weeks ago in New Orleans and Mississippi.

Jefferson County Judge Carl Griffith and other local leaders, "haggard after days of almost non-stop work with little sleep, pleaded with the federal government to get itself in a higher gear," the paper said. Griffith said he wanted to return services to residents who remain but that "it seems like they can't figure out how to get it done."

"There's a drastic shortage of generators in Beaumont to provide emergency power," Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst said. "There are generators at Ford Park, and FEMA is withholding their release. They want to finish their damage assessment."

Jefferson County officials had a plan to distribute Meals-Ready-to-Eat from local fire stations, the paper said. However, Griffith said the MREs, like the generators, were being withheld by FEMA.

 

from Alan Cooperman and Elizabeth Williamson at WaPo, "FEMA Plans to Reimburse Faith Groups for Aid":
After weeks of prodding by Republican lawmakers and the American Red Cross, the Federal Emergency Management Agency said yesterday that it will use taxpayer money to reimburse churches and other religious organizations that have opened their doors to provide shelter, food and supplies to survivors of hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

FEMA officials said it would mark the first time that the government has made large-scale payments to religious groups for helping to cope with a domestic natural disaster.

"I believe it's appropriate for the federal government to assist the faith community because of the scale and scope of the effort and how long it's lasting," said Joe Becker, senior vice president for preparedness and response with the Red Cross.

Civil liberties groups called the decision a violation of the traditional boundary between church and state, accusing FEMA of trying to restore its battered reputation by playing to religious conservatives.

"What really frosts me about all this is, here is an administration that didn't do its job and now is trying to dig itself out by making right-wing groups happy," said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State.
Comment by me: After getting their rocks off during Katrina, the only thing the media whores have to say about the debacle of Rita is, "Whew! Not as bad as it coulda been. Refineries are OK. Next!?!!?

Another comment by me: where the hell are the Dumbocrats???? Except for Barbara Lee and these brave folks . . .
Rep. John Conyers
Rep. Tammy Baldwin
Rep. William Lacy Clay
Rep. Danny Davis
Rep. William Delahunt
Rep. Lane Evans
Rep. Sam Farr
Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva
Rep. Luis Gutierrez
Rep. Maurice D. Hinchey
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee
Rep. Dennis Kucinich
Rep. Carolyn C. Kilpatrick
Rep. Jim McDermott
Rep. Jim Oberstar
Rep. Major R. Owens
Rep. Frank Pallone Jr.
Rep. Don Payne
Rep. Charles Rangel
Rep. Jan Schakowsky
Rep. José E. Serrano
Rep. Pete Stark
Rep. Bennie Thompson
Rep. Diane Watson
Rep. Robert Wexler
Rep. Lynn Woolsey
(hey, where's Waxman??)

plus Schumer, Conyers, and a couple of others, they are silent on all matters important. Democrats do not want change, they just want power.

9.23.2005

Scornpiracy Teary (or "What Did I Start Here NOW?")


OK. So I'm not gonna tell you whether I was kidding yesterday or not. I mean, I got reporters with the P! News Service all over the damn place. But I'm not real sure what we've stumbled into ovah heah . . .

First, this cat ptg comments on my revelatory post about nuking Rita and so I look around and discover that he opines on his own blog that I'm hiding my true Marxist sentiments under a stealthy cloak of progressive/populist appellations and rhetoric. Gasp! Well, shit, man . . . I didn't mean to hide my redness. How can I make it more visible? I suppose, though, that I'm fair game, since 95% of Democrats are trying to hide their creeping fascist allegiance beneath the same progressive/populist appellations and rhetoric.

Anyway, so ptg points me to Girls Go Fishing, where, I find, there seems to be support (or sort of) for something like what we reported here yesterday. Excerpts from "Hurricane Storm Surge As A Weapon":
Why has 'storm-surge' become the deadliest aspect of this 2005 hurricane season? Is it really a coincidence that these hurricane-induced tsunamis just happen to be occurring less than a year post-Indonesia tsunami? Why not 5 years ago..or 20 years ago? Why only since Bush took power have all these horrific unimaginable catastrophes with massive loss of life taken place around the world, military, and via seemingly natural catastrophes?

Think about it!

Why weren't "storm-surges" displaying weaponistic tsunami tendancies in the many hurricane seasons which preceded the Indonesian tsunami? Global warming has been around for ages. Why the cluster and sudden escalation? Louisiana's hurricane Katrina storm-surge was predicted to be a wopping 18 feet, yet the surge from hurricane Rita is expected to be well over 20 feet . . .

Is it coincidence that tsunami-like events, even though caused by completely separate phenomenon, are occurring so close together? To the logical mind this gets written off as a coincidence, because nothing else in the psyche can explain it. Who could imagine that the government would know how to manipulate warm ocean currents to maximize the impact of a hurricane and direct it to specific targets? And who could imagine that even if they had the technology (they do have it) that they would use it against their own people, or the innocent people of far-away countries? Although nearly unfathomable... we had better believe it, because it is the truth about this moment in human history, and it's probably better to boggle the mind now, than later . . .

Most science has been kept under wraps, secret from the public that pays for it...technology which is known only to the elites (you know who I mean)? There is something that the general populus has largly over-looked, even though scientists are discussing it at the water cooler and in weather laboratories...and even though Russia openly discusses it with the world media..and even though there are treaties between Canada and the United States regarding use of this technology as well as partnerships and alignments which include open admissions to the world that Russia and China have aligned militarily, and the US and Canada have been partnered up for years, and are practicing weather and crop manipulation as an economic/corporate weapon ... ..most people still don't know about the war going on right under their noses.

It seems too impossible for the mind to grasp because it is simply beyond human experience, or, it is at least beyond 'obvious' human experience? There are a great number of people out there who know perfectly well that scalar wars are already underway, that volcanoes, earthquakes, and tsunamis are just a few of the toys the government is wreaking havoc with, on its own people.

As admissions from government officials are leaked out in various ways, through press-conferences and small slips during speeches, most of the general public simply don't pick up on the clues. People are too lazy. They are used to having things figured out and fed to them by "higher-powers". And as we should know, if you leave it up to someone else to feed us, we get whatever they want to give us..right? Ask a 4 year old if he'd rather chose his own meal, or whether he'd rather you picked it for him. He knows the danger in it.

Government transparency is no longer expected and they know it. We are seeing a grotesque escalation of "in-your-face" crime. A new kind of war is what Bush said we are facing, and he wasn't lying about that one thing. It is a different kind of war..but not the one he's touting. Instead there is a race to see who can destroy who by collapsing the climate, creating cataclysmic earthquakes, and tsunamis (which are the favorite horse lately) are the weapon of ease and choice, and they are having a ball with it.

So, what do hurricanes like the ones we're seeing now, and earthquakes have in common? They both seem to have tsunamis in common, don't they? If both earthquakes and hurricanes are being exacerbated and surgically directed for maximum damage via the use of electroscalar magnetic weapon technology (which is something we've all heard the department of defense (DOD) Cohen specifically speak about) ...then it makes more sense that what our guts are telling us (always trust your gut even if you don't understand it) about these tragedies is true . . .
Oooff!! Feel dizzy! Faces transmogrifying!! Need . . . to look into . . . can't find cellphone . . . Scullleeeeeeyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!

[UPDATE] from "A Warning to the People of South Texas: The Nukes in Rita's Path" by Russ Hoffman at CounterPunch:
South Texas Project 1 and STP 2 are two nuclear power plants located just 90 miles SW of Houston. That's not very far if an accident occurs and radiation is released during 100+ MPH winds. There is no guarantee the plants can survive the conditions they are about to face.

STP's two reactors, and all the spent radioactive fuel stored outside the reactor domes in pools at the site, could be subjected to a category 5 (strongest possible) hurricane (ie, bigger than Katrina). Swarms of tornados are also not unheard of during hurricanes. A fuel tank or truck could, for example, be picked up and lofted into the spent fuel pools. The plants will be off the grid (if they aren't already) and operating on emergency generators, but these could be knocked out as well. The intakes or outlets for the cooling systems could be damaged or plugged. All of these are possible, but none of them are considered credible by the authorities . . .

LOCATION: Matagorda County (nearest major city: Galveston, TX; 90 miles SW of Houston, TX; 8 miles west of Wadsworth, TX, 12 miles SSW of Bay City, TX)

South Texas Project Electric Generating Sta.: Unit 1

1,250 Mw

PWR/Westinghouse "pressurized to 2,300 pounds per square inch to keep water liquid at 600º F" (Source: STP web site.)

Spent fuel on site: 320 tons as of 1995.

Commercial start-up date: Aug., 1988

Current Status: Making waste

1982 CRAC-2 est. "Worst Case" Casualties: 39,000; Property Damage: $112 Billion

South Texas Project Electric Generating Sta.: Unit 2

1,250 Mw

PWR/W (See Unit 1 for information.)

Commercial start-up date: June, 1989

Current Status: Making waste

1982 CRAC-2 est. "Worst Case" Casualties: 39,000; Property Damage: $104 Billion

The Reactor Containment Buildings are 200-foot domes. The plant site is an official wildlife area providing habitat for several threatened species, including bald eagles, peregrine falcons, white-tailed hawks and alligators. (Source: STP web site.)

April 19th, 2003: "[A radioactive] powdery material was found April 12 on the outside of two instrument guide tubes where the tubes enter the bottom of the reactor". (Source: New York Times; Unit unknown.)

May 8th, 1990: Pipe crack in reactor at South Texas (Source: Greenpeace; Unit unknown.)

9.22.2005

Exclusive!! Rita is Terrorist Agent! Duck 'n' Cover, Y'all!


"Hurricane Rita ties to Al Qaida alleged. Nukes considered"

[P! News Service; Sept. 22, 2004]

Top FEMA (Fucked-Up eMess Agency) and Homeland Insecurity officials today urged the Pentagon to deploy tactical nuclear weapons against Hurricane Rita, saying it was obvious that the monster storm, as well as its predecessor Katrina, were al Qaida-generated attacks against Gulf Coast oil resources. These unnamed officials also spoke of Katrina as a "Taliban/Shi'ite blow against the right of American women to expose their breasts and eat spicy pork and shrimp at the same meal."

One running dog capitalist sycophant toady proclaimed the threat to the Doubleduh-Cheney Gang's dacha in Crawford, Texas as "totally unacceptable . . . we can give up Galveston, we can lose Corpus Christi, maybe even sacrifice Houston. But Crawford? No fuckin way, podnuh."

Dept. of Energy sources claimed that utilizing nukes would pose no danger, denying that strong prevailing winds would carry massive fallout over the central and eastern Gulf Coast. "Even if that happened," he said, "there ain't nothin worth a shit left there anyway."
Not so far fetched. Here's an clip from Tom Raum's "Hurricanes Decrease Support for Iraq War" at Newsday today:
WASHINGTON -- Hurricane Katrina and its wrenching aftermath have turned public attention and already-dwindling support away from President Bush's Iraq policy. And that was before Hurricane Rita took aim at Texas.

The devastating storms are increasing pressure around the country and in Congress for an Iraq exit strategy and prompting calls for reining in spending on an increasingly unpopular war, one which could bedevil Republicans in the 2006 midterm congressional elections.

"It's a tangled picture" that will get even more complicated as those elections near, said Stephen Cimbala, a political scientist at Pennsylvania State University. "It's like Osama bin Laden's running the weather," he added, referring to the fugitive al-Qaida terror leader.

Bush's core of supporters for staying the course in Iraq appears to be shrinking, although war opponents are nowhere close to having enough votes in Congress to cut off or trim funds.

As many Americans brace for a winter of soaring home heating prices resulting in part from hurricane damage to oil and natural gas supplies, a rising number of Republican conservatives worry about the federal hurricane tab -- estimated at $200 billion or more when Katrina was the only factor.

"Look, everything's changed. We didn't anticipate a $200 billion expenditure of taxpayers' dollars a month ago, and so everything's changed," said Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who wants the money to come from spending cuts instead of from U.S. troop withdrawals in Iraq.

9.20.2005

Da Troof


Kid, 17 yo, pimples: "Yo! I wanna, like, y'know, join the Army!"

Recruiter: "Well, OK, there son! Yer gonna LOVE it! After we train you in the fine art of killin, we gonna send yuh to the hottest desert in the world, where you gonna carry 'round 150 pounds of equipment, no armor, where there's a hunnert pissed off towelheads to every onna yew. We gonna putcha inna non-armored hummvee in heat you can't imagine to look fer enemies you can't tell from friends. If yuh survive the heat, yer gonna deal with roadside bombs, car bombs, and friendly fire bombs filled with depleted uranium or maybe some new kinda poison gas we're testin. We're gonna 'noculate yuh with stuff they just cooked up in Mohave Desert, just tuh see if it'll work. If yuh get through the next 18 tuh 60 months or so without losin more than three limbs and yer mind, we ship yuh back to the states. You gonna be so happy you'll kill yer wife in about three days, but you'll survive the suicide attempt, so we'll load yuh into a troop carrier and set yuh down in Looseeanna so yuh kin protect flooded out buildings and stores from them crazy criminals tryin to steal food they don't own. They'll be armed with the same guns we give you. So, YOU REDDY TUH SERVE YER COUNTRY, SON?"

Kid: "Way kewl! Where do I sign?"

Stupid Inhuman Tricks

Now lookie here! Even if you agree with The Doubleduh-Cheney Gang's agenda, yuh gotta admit that they done fucked up the Iraq thingy and didn't manage to move a few thousand folks out the way of a storm that gave plenty of warning (not to mention the fact that the damn thang wuz predicticated years ago). And the only thing they're putting on the table to pay for their incompetence are cuts in social programs. Yep - the po' folks gonna pay dearly for the honor and privludge o' havin Preznut Bunnypants and Big Dick trash their lives. And the Dumbocrats jus' gonna let'em get away with it (there ain't no Democratic Party - get it?).

Whew! Ok . . . anyway . . . my main point here is: the only thing these folks have done right is figure out how to get away with it and still advance their agenda (making a small number of people very very very fucking rich). I call this Stupid Inhuman Tricks (thanks, Dave. Remind me to send you my "Top Ten Reasons Judge Roberts Should Go Fuck Himself").

My question is, "with a track record like this, why is The Gang involved in even more bullshit adventurism?"

Take, for example, our presence in Paraguay. A clip or two from "U.S. Military in Paraguay Prepares to 'Spread Democracy'" (note that the link points to the article as republished at Axis of Logic; the article was original published at Toward Freedom):
Controversy is raging in Paraguay, where the U.S. military is conducting secretive operations. 500 U.S. troops arrived in the country on July 1st with planes, weapons and ammunition. Eyewitness reports prove that an airbase exists in Mariscal Estigarribia, Paraguay, which is 200 kilometers from the border with Bolivia and may be utilized by the U.S. military. Officials in Paraguay claim the military operations are routine humanitarian efforts and deny that any plans are underway for a U.S. base. Yet human rights groups in the area are deeply worried. White House officials are using rhetoric about terrorist threats in the tri-border region (where Paraguay, Brazil and Argentina meet) in order to build their case for military operations, in many ways reminiscent to the build up to the invasion of Iraq. (1) The tri-border area is home to the Guarani Aquifer, one of the world’s largest reserves of water. Near the Estigarribia airbase are Bolivia’s natural gas reserves, the second largest in Latin America. Political analysts believe U.S. operations in Paraguay are part of a preventative war to control these natural resources and suppress social uprisings in Bolivia . . .

The proximity of the Estigarribia base to Bolivian natural gas reserves, and the fact that the military operations coincide with a presidential election in Bolivia, has also been a cause for concern. The election is scheduled to take place on December 4 2005. Bolivian Workers’ Union leader Jaime Solares, and Movement Toward Socialism (M.A.S.) Legislator Antonio Peredo, have warned of U.S. plans for a military coup to frustrate the elections. Solares said the U.S. Embassy backs rightwing ex-President Jorge Quiroga in his bid for office, and will go as far as necessary to prevent any other candidate’s victory . . .

Paraguayan and U.S. officials contend that much of the recent military collaborations are based on health and humanitarian work. However, State Department reports do not mention any funding for health works in Paraguay. They do mention that funding for the Counterterrorism Fellowship Program (CTFP) in the country doubled for 2005. The report explained, ""Bilateral relations between the U.S. and Paraguay are strong, with Paraguay providing excellent cooperation in the fight against terrorism…CTFP provided funds for Paraguayans to attend courses on the dynamics of international terrorism, and the importance and application of intelligence in combating terrorism."

Cute, eh? Looks to me like the strategy for these creeps is "If it ain't broke, break it, move on, find somethin else that ain't broke. Apply, rinse, repeat."

9.19.2005

Chronology of Crap


The following are all excerpts from articles (as dated) at Halliburton Watch:

Sept. 1:
The US Navy asked Halliburton to repair naval facilities damaged by Hurricane Katrina, the Houston Chronicle reported today. The work was assigned to Halliburton's KBR subsidiary under the Navy's $500 million CONCAP contract awarded to KBR in 2001 and renewed in 2004. The repairs will take place in Louisiana and Mississippi.

KBR has not been asked to repair the levees destroyed in New Orleans which became the primary cause of most of the damage.

Since 1989, governments worldwide have awarded $3 billion in contracts to KBR's Government and Infrastructure Division to clean up damage caused by natural and man-made disasters.

Earlier this year, the Navy awarded $350 million in contracts to KBR and three other companies to repair naval facilities in northwest Florida damaged by Hurricane Ivan, which struck in September 2004. The ongoing repair work involves aircraft support facilities, medium industrial buildings, marine construction, mechanical and electrical improvements, civil construction, and family housing renovation.

In March, the former director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which is tasked with responding to hurricane disasters, became a lobbyist for KBR. Joe Allbaugh was director of FEMA during the first two years of the Bush administration.
Sept. 8:
The former head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Joseph Allbaugh, now a lobbyist for Halliburton, is in Louisiana helping his clients obtain disaster relief contracts, the Washington Post reported today.

But Allbaugh insisted he's not in Louisiana seeking contracts for clients.

"I don't do government contracts," he told the Post from Louisiana. Instead, he says he's "just trying to lend my shoulder to the wheel, trying to coordinate some private-sector support that the government always asks for."

But that's not the same thing as seeking government contracts for clients, says Allbaugh.

“The first thing he says when he sits down with a client is, ‘Don’t hire me if you’re looking for a government contract,’” an Allbaugh spokesperson defensively told The Hill newspaper today.

With all the public outrage over Halliburton's contracts, it's not surprising that Allbaugh would distance himself from the word "contract" even though he's involved in helping clients obtain government contracts in Louisiana, Iraq and elsewhere.

Even Republicans on Capitol Hill are feeling a bit disgusted. “I think there are some laws that have to be changed, especially [when contracting] in emergency situations and the like," Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA), chairman of the House Committee on Government Reform, told the Hill.
Sept. 10:
Companies with ties to the Bush White House and the former head of FEMA are clinching some of the administration's first disaster relief and reconstruction contracts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

At least two major corporate clients of lobbyist Joe Allbaugh, President George W. Bush's former campaign manager and a former head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, have already been tapped to start recovery work along the battered Gulf Coast.

One is Shaw Group Inc. and the other is Halliburton Co. subsidiary Kellogg Brown and Root. Vice President Dick Cheney is a former head of Halliburton.

Bechtel National Inc., a unit of San Francisco-based Bechtel Corp., has also been selected by FEMA to provide short-term housing for people displaced by the hurricane. Bush named Bechtel's CEO to his Export Council and put the former CEO of Bechtel Energy in charge of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation.

Experts say it has been common practice in both Republican and Democratic administrations for policy makers to take lobbying jobs once they leave office, and many of the same companies seeking contracts in the wake of Hurricane Katrina have already received billions of dollars for work in Iraq.

Halliburton alone has earned more than $9 billion. Pentagon audits released by Democrats in June showed $1.03 billion in "questioned" costs and $422 million in "unsupported" costs for Halliburton's work in Iraq.

But the web of Bush administration connections is attracting renewed attention from watchdog groups in the post-Katrina reconstruction rush. Congress has already appropriated more than $60 billion in emergency funding as a down payment on recovery efforts projected to cost well over $100 billion.
Sept. 16:
A former contracting officer with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) told a congressional committee today that Halliburton regularly threatens government officials who complain about contracting abuse.

Christy Watts, who was Chief of Contracting at USACE in Louisville, Kentucky, said Halliburton and USACE "habitually" violate contracting regulations and demand employees conceal it from the public. She described a culture of fear and intimidation designed to protect Halliburton's bottom line.

"One point I need to make very clear: in my 18 years in contracting, I had never, with any other company except Halliburton, been treated in such a demeaning and intimidating manner," Watts told the Senate Democratic Policy Committee. "When pointing out to Halliburton personnel their contractual non-compliances, I was threatened verbally and physically intimidated for performing my job," she said.

Watts told the committee about frightening examples of Halliburton officials throwing temper tantrums or telephoning her home after midnight to scream at her for awarding contracts to competitors. In one instance, she was verbally accosted after informing the company that it violated regulations by failing to award 20 percent of subcontracts in Alaska to small businesses.

Watts, who worked for USACE for 12 years, is a self-described Republican who voted both times for President George W. Bush. She says contracting abuse and intimidation by her employer occurred in the Clinton administration as well.

"The problems are systemic and have been occurring for decades – through both Republican and Democrat administrations," she said. "Please serve the interests of the American people and address this as an issue of right and wrong – nothing more, nothing less."

Her superiors apparently have contempt for the government. She said USACE "views contracting professionals as a drag on their ability to do what they want." If a contracting officer speaks out against abuse, "they can expect to be terminated," she said.

When Watts left her employment with USACE, her superiors were worried she might go public with her allegations. So, they demanded a settlement agreement which banned her from contacting the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, which would be tasked with investigating her complaints. "I have concluded that the act of preventing me from communicating my concerns of contract abuse and unlawful activity freely to the Special Counsel is evidence of waste, fraud, abuse and corruption," she said.

Watts also disclosed an internal Army memorandum from her superior who admitted that Watts could make USACE "look really bad, if all the problems are found that I think they will find."

Another USACE whistleblower, Bunnatine H. Greenhouse, also spoke before the committee. Greenhouse's allegations of contracting abuse are being investigated by the Justice Department and the Pentagon's inspector general. Nevertheless, USACE recently demoted her after she disclosed her complaints to Congress. "I was removed because I steadfastly resisted and attempted to alter what can be described as casual and clubby contracting practices by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers commanders, and because I presented testimony before this body on June 27, 2005," she said.

Although USACE officials were invited to the committee hearing, they declined to appear.

Halliburton's KBR subsidiary stands to gain additional contracts to repair damage left by Hurricane Katrina. Estimates of the federal government's reconstruction costs have been as high as $200 billion. USACE has already utilized KBR's Navy contract, or CONCAP, to hire the company for Katrina clean-up work. The Navy has currently provided two task orders to KBR, one worth $12 million for cleaning up and repairing Navy installations in Pascagoula and Gulfport, Mississippi. The other, worth $15 million, will be used by USACE and KBR for pumping water and building temporary morgues in New Orleans.
Allow me to make some salient points:

  1. As it did with 9/11, The Doubleduh-Cheney Gang will use Katrina and subsequent tragedies as opportunities to make billions for the Gang's bankers

  2. Doubleduh has "accepted responsibility" for feds' Keystone Kops act in the Gulf. I thought that chief executives found responsible for such things resigned, got fired, and/or got thrown in jail. Why aren't Dumbocrats calling for both Doubleduh and Cheney to resign?

  3. Congress, regardless of party, is incapable of facing the reality that the tax code must be set on its head and Iraq must be abandoned to its own quite capable devices in the face of overwhelming evidence that the present course and policies are suicidal

  4. Katrina is only an example of what's to come. Future catastrophies will be worse; the racial divide will widen; chaos will eventually result in anarchy and a major collapse of constitutional principles and processes


Our governments have systematically brought us to this place. And yet we're nowhere near committing ourselves to the level of organized non-violent resistance and change that will save us from ourselves. Sad . . . just sad.

9.11.2005

Safety is as safety does

Excerpt from Alexander Dawoody: "Sept. 11, 2001: Four years later, are we safer?":
Rather than admitting mistakes, developing an exit strategy, and ending this immoral war that will never see victory, the president is making up excuses as he goes along. When weapons of mass destruction proved to be bogus, he shifted his war's objective to creating democracy in Iraq. When this democracy proved to be a joke, he shifted his objective to establishing security. When security is deteriorating day after day, he shifted the objective toward helping Iraqis help themselves. Along with these continuous shifts in objectives, there were also continuous deception, arrogance and denials - from the infamous "Mission Accomplished" aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln in 2003, to his "Bring 'em on" cowboy mentality in addressing the insurgency in Iraq, to his vice president's illusionary remark that the insurgency is in its last "throes."

MINDFULLY, 2004: There are over 800 prison camps in the United States, all fully operational and ready to receive prisoners. They are all staffed and even surrounded by full-time guards, but they are all empty. These camps are to be operated by FEMA should martial law need to be implemented in the United States and all it would take is a presidential signature on a proclamation and the attorney general's signature on a warrant to which a list of names is attached. . . The Rex 84 Program was established on the reasoning that if a "mass exodus" of illegal aliens crossed the Mexican/US border, they would be quickly rounded up and detained in detention centers by FEMA. Rex 84 allowed many military bases to be closed down and to be turned into prisons. Operation Cable Splicer and Garden Plot are the two sub programs which will be implemented once the Rex 84 program is initiated for its proper purpose. Garden Plot is the program to control the population. Cable Splicer is the program for an orderly takeover of the state and local governments by the federal government. FEMA is the executive arm of the coming police state and thus will head up all operations. The Presidential Executive Orders already listed on the Federal Register also are part of the legal framework for this operation. The camps all have railroad facilities as well as roads leading to and from the detention facilities. Many also have an airport nearby. The majority of the camps can house a population of 20,000 prisoners. Currently, the largest of these facilities is just outside of Fairbanks, Alaska. The Alaskan facility is a massive mental health facility and can hold approximately 2 million people.


Have a real nice day.

9.09.2005

Don't Agonize . . . POLITICIZE!!

What does a liberal do when someone calls her a liberal? Denies it. Remember when the Doubleduh-Cheney Gang was gearing up to lower the taxes on rich folks (and lower the boom on the rest of us)? When lefties complained, Preznut Bunnypants accused us of waging class war. That shut a lot of lefties up (not US, no SIR, we're ANTI-war!!).

Now folks are scared of being accused of politicizing the Gulf Coast Holocaust. As if telling the truth and bringing our genocidal governments to justice are some sort of sin.

I wanted to puke watching Pelosi demanding that Mike "Horsefeathers" Brown be shitcanned. Couldn't help but think of the nasty Queen and "OFF WITH HIS HEAD!!" The complicity of the Dumbocrats continues unabashed and unabated. What Dancey Nancy really wants is to identify the patsy, execute him, and thereby avoid anybody asking about her party's contribution to systematic government dismantling.

"Rescuing America: A 9-Step Plan" by AlterNet's Van Jones begins, "The tragedy of Katrina offers progressives the rare opportunity to step in with vision, courage and leadership." Here's a clip:
4. Resolve not to lose a single moment, pacing back and forth, wringing our hands and trying not to appear too "partisan" or "blaming." Of course, the Republicans are going to howl that we are "finger-pointing" or "exploiting the tragedy." What else can they say for themselves at this point? That Bush did a good job? Let them call us names. Let us stay focused on ensuring that the thousands who perished did not die in vain.

But let me offer a pragmatic, concrete suggestion about how to politicize . . .

How much danger is your community in? If something like Katrina were to happen in Cincinatti or Eugene or Portland or Topeka, how many would be left behind to die given the status quo? How much have the policies of the Doubleduh-Cheney Gang eroded the infrastructure and resources in your community? Well, FIND OUT, dammit . . . then demand that it be fixed.

9.08.2005

On rage . . .

During "normal" times I generally carry around a fairly steamy level of rage about our government(s), politicians, and prevailing culture. I know it "seeps through" on occasion (yes, I'm being facetious) into my writing here. I also know that when the heat level goes from "steamy" to nuclear, my thinking and writing suffer. Last week, the level went from nuclear to solar. So I decided to keep my mouth shut and put some mittens on.

I'll have to be cautiously satisfied, for now, with a return to nuclear. Before pointing you to some more reliable sources ('tho no less pissed off than I), let me reiterate one of my basic premises: the Gulf Coast Genocide is the result of a long-term, systematic effort of the middle and right-wing forces to dismantle our governments and redistribute its considerable resources to well-off, white "christians". Period.

The Doubleduh-Cheney Gang has successfully matched Saddam Hussein's genocidal acts of the '80s. And unless there is universal, fundamental change and rehabilitation, this holocaust is only a preview of things to come.

I'll leave the rest of the talking to the folks at The Black Commentator. I won't link to individual articles, because if you don't start at the homepage and read the whole issue, you suck. Here are some excerpts, however:


Margaret Kimberley, "New Orleans and the Demise of the Democrats" -


“They have M-16s and they’re
locked and loaded. These troops know how to shoot and kill, and
they are more than willing to do so.”
Kathleen
Blanco
, Democratic Louisiana Governor

“But I want to thank the president.”
Mary
Landrieu
, Democratic Louisiana Senator

“…you and I are not in a position
to make any judgment because we weren't there.”

Bill
Clinton
, former Democratic President

Democrats made these mean spirited and ignorant statements.
The entire country is facing the plight of the people of New Orleans,
coping with the dangers of Republican hell and Democratic high water.
One party is proud of its viciousness while the other claims not
to be vicious but proudly proclaims its willingness to shoot desperate refugees.

The degree of Democratic callousness in the New Orleans
tragedy may be shocking at first, but it is actually consistent
with the direction the party has taken for the past two decades.
The Democrats are dying a slow political death. Their inaction and
acquiescence in New Orleans is just the latest symptom presented
by a terminal patient . . .

Thulani Davis, "Unbearable Crime on the Mississippi" -
. . .there is now what is called the Katrina Diaspora. This diaspora of people without resources puts the restoration of families and community at risk, and in the case of New Orleans' black community, probably makes that impossible. Even people who own land there are going to be in deep trouble trying to hold onto it when the real estate boondoggle gets in the courts. I'm afraid we'll be reading a lot of stupid crap about how they couldn't be found, taxes were owed, etc. as in times past throughout the South. That's why I hope Jesse gets someone to bring people like Congressman Bennie Thompson into the fold, as he is familiar with the commission that had to be set up in the Delta because people are still trying to get back land stolen in the 1930s. And the developers are probably asking for eminent domain to be declared even as I'm typing . . .

This is a tragedy not only for the millions there on the ground, and the national economy but for the culture at large. We are witnessing in a matter of days a dislocation one-fifth the size of Middle Passage – which took place over more than 200 years. And all those conveniences of modern social organization which would mitigate its effects for most of us – phone, internet, cars, gasoline, and family with ample housing – do not apply to this country's poor. For them, getting lost may mean not being found any more easily than in 1865 when people went on foot and in wagons following word of mouth leads to find where family members may have been sent.

Tim Wise, "Blasphemy About New Orleans: A God With Whom I am Not Familiar" -
This is an open letter to the man sitting behind me at La Paz today, in Nashville, at lunchtime, with the Brooks Brothers shirt:

You don't know me. But I know you . . .

I heard you ask, amid the din of your colleagues "Amens," why it was that instead of pitching in to help their fellow Americans, the people of New Orleans instead – again, all of them in your mind – choose to steal and shoot at relief helicopters.

I watched you wipe salsa from the corners of your mouth, as you nodded agreement to the statement of one of your friends, sitting to your right, her hair neatly coiffed, her makeup flawless, her jewelry sparkling. When you asked, rhetorically, why it was that people were so much more decent amid the tragedy of 9-11, as compared to the aftermath of Katrina, she had offered her response, but only after apologizing for what she admitted was going to sound harsh.

"Well," Buffy explained. "It's probably because in New Orleans, it seems to be mostly poor people, and you know, they just don't have the same regard."

She then added that police should shoot the looters, and should have done so from the beginning, so as to send a message to the rest that theft would not be tolerated. You, who had just thanked Jesus for your chips and guacamole, said you agreed. They should be shot. Praise the Lord.

Your God is one with whom I am not familiar . . .

Your God – the one to whom you prayed today, and likely do before every meal, because this gesture proves what a good Christian you are – is one with whom I am not familiar.

Your God is one who you sincerely believe gives a flying fuck about your lunch. Your God is one who you seem to believe watches over you and blesses you, and brings good tidings your way, while simultaneously letting thousands of people watch their homes be destroyed, and perhaps ten thousand or more die, many of them in the streets for lack of water or food.

Did you ever stop to think just what a rancid asshole such a God would have to be, such that he would take care of the likes of you, while letting babies die in their mother's arms, and old people in wheelchairs, at the foot of Canal Street?

Your God is one with whom I am not familiar . . .

God doesn't feed you, and it isn't God that kept me from turning around and beating your lily white privileged ass today either.

God has nothing to do with it.

God doesn't care who wins the Super Bowl.

God doesn't help anyone win an Academy Award.

God didn't get you your last raise, or your SUV.

And if God is even half as tired as I am of having to listen to self-righteous bastards like you blame the victims of this nightmare for their fate, then you had best eat slowly from this point forward.

Why didn't they evacuate like they were told?

Are you serious?

There were 100,000 people in that city without cars. Folks who are too poor to own their own vehicle, and who rely on public transportation every day. I know this might shock you. They don't have a Hummer2, or whatever gas-guzzling piece of crap you either already own or probably are saving up for.

And no, they didn't just choose not to own a car because the buses are so gosh-darned efficient and great, as Rush Limbaugh implied, and as you likely heard, since you're the kind of person who hangs on the every word of such bloviating hacks as these.

Why did they loot?

Are you serious?

People are dying, in the streets, on live television. Fathers and mothers are watching their baby's eyes bulge in their skulls from dehydration, and you are begrudging them some Goddamned candy bars, diapers and water? . . .

Well Chuck, it's a free country, and so you certainly have the right I suppose to continue lecturing the poor, in between checking your Blackberry and dropping the kids off at soccer practice. If you want to believe that the poor of New Orleans are immoral and greedy, and unworthy of support at a time like this – or somehow more in need of your scolding than whatever donation you might make to a relief fund – so be it.

But let's leave God out of it, shall we? All of it.

Your God is one with whom I am not familiar, and I'd prefer to keep it that way.
Amen!

9.01.2005

The war comes home . . .


For several years now, the Doubleduh-Cheney Gang has been waging a multi-front war. The one in Iraq gets the most attention, of course, followed by the one in Opiumistan. There are a few others, enemies like Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Cuba, France, Massachusetts, and so forth.

With all that excitement, as well as Tom Cruise, to distract us, it's no wonder that few really caught on that the Gang has methodically planted and armed massive time-bombs at strategic places in the country they're most anxious to defeat - the USA. One of 'em went off a few days ago. Talk about shock 'n' awe.

From Counterpunch, excerpts from "Another Terrible Casualty of the Iraq War: How New Orleans was Lost" by Paul Craig Roberts:
Chalk up the city of New Orleans as a cost of Bush's Iraq war.

There were not enough helicopters to repair the breeched levees and rescue people trapped by rising water. Nor are there enough Louisiana National Guards available to help with rescue efforts and to patrol against looting.

The situation is the same in Mississippi.

The National Guard and helicopters are off on a fools mission in Iraq.

The National Guard is in Iraq because fanatical neoconsevatives in the Bush administration were determined to invade the Middle East and because the incompetent Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld refused to listen to the generals, who told him there were not enough regular troops available to do the job.

After the invasion, the arrogant Rumsfeld found out that the generals were right. The National Guard was called up to fill in the gaping gaps.

Now the Guardsmen, trapped in the Iraqi quagmire, are watching on TV the families they left behind trapped by rising waters and wondering if the floating bodies are family members. None know where their dislocated families are, but, shades of Fallujah, they do see their destroyed homes.

The mayor of New Orleans was counting on helicopters to put in place massive sandbags to repair the levee. However, someone called the few helicopters away to rescue people from rooftops. The rising water overwhelmed the massive pumping stations, and New Orleans disappeared under deep water.

What a terrible casualty of the Iraqi war--one of our oldest and most beautiful cities, a famous city, a historic city.

Distracted by its phony war on terrorism, the US government had made no preparations in the event Hurricane Katarina brought catastrophe to New Orleans. No contingency plan existed. Only now after the disaster are FEMA and the Corp of Engineers trying to assemble the material and equipment to save New Orleans from the fate of Atlantis.

Even worse, articles in the New Orleans Times-Picayune and public statements by emergency management chiefs in New Orleans make it clear that the Bush administration slashed the funding for the Corp of Engineers' projects to strengthen and raise the New Orleans levees and diverted the money to the Iraq war.

Walter Maestri, emergency management chief for Jefferson Parish, told the New Orleans Times-Picayune (June 8, 2004): "It appears that the money has been moved in the president's budget to handle homeland security and the war in Iraq, and I suppose that's the price we pay. Nobody locally is happy that the levees can't be finished, and we are doing everything we can to make the case that this is a security issue for us."

Why can't the US government focus on America's needs and leave other countries alone? Why are American troops in Iraq instead of protecting our own borders from a mass invasion by illegal immigrants? Why are American helicopters blowing up Iraqi homes instead of saving American homes in New Orleans?
Good questions, Paul. I have a few others: Why are cops and guardsmen pointing guns at looters in New Orleans instead of ignoring them and trying to save lives around the Convention Center (where it's about to turn very ugly)? Why isn't Congress meeting in emergency special session to oversee the relief effort? Why isn't the Doubleduh-Cheney Gang calling for corporations to donate millions from their profits?

There is growing fear on the left that this situation may be a ready-made excuse to abandon even more constitutional provisions in the name of "national security" and "public safety". Don't forget what opportunists the Doubleduh-Cheney's are.