July 6, 2009 archive

Barack’s got a drinking problem … that has to end

Barack Obama has a serious problem in terms of his personal habits.

It isn’t that fact that, according to The Washington Post, Obama is too perfect and the rest of America’s males can’t keep up.

It isn’t his sneaking around smoking cigaretters while putting forward policy to cut youth smoking.  

Considering the fact that the last President was an alcoholic, it seems reasonable to wonder why there is all of this attention on a few cigarettes and not a word on Obama’s drinking problem. A problem, by the way, that he shares with 100s of millions (if not billions around the world) and which is documented as helping wreck havoc on global society.

Four at Four

  1. The LA Times reports Presidents Obama and Medvedev announce framework for nuclear cuts. Obama and the Russian president annonced “they had reached agreements on a range of issues including a framework to reduce their nations’ nuclear arsenals and steps to fight terrorism, including the war in Afghanistan.”

    “The goal is to replace the START arms control treaty, which expires at the end of this year. The eventual deal could cut warheads from more than 2,000 to as few as 1,500 for each country.”

  2. The NY Times reports George W. Bush wants Saddam Hussein’s gun as trophy for his ‘library’. “when the library for George W. Bush opens in 2013 on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, visitors will most likely get to see one of his most treasured items: Saddam Hussein’s pistol… For nearly five years, Mr. Bush kept the mounted, glass-encased pistol in the Oval Office or a study, showing it with pride, especially to military officials”.

    Other items Bush prized was “a brick from the Iraq safe house where the Qaeda leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was killed by an American air strike in 2006. The gun is among 40,000 artifacts and gifts the Bushes had collected, including the bullhorn Mr. Bush used to address rescue workers at ground zero”.

  3. The Boston Globe reports More female veterans are winding up homeless. “The number of female service members who have become homeless after leaving the military has jumped dramatically in recent years, according to new government estimates, presenting the Veterans Administration with a challenge as it struggles to accommodate the hundreds of thousands of returning veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan.”

    For young veterans, “one out of every 10 homeless vets under the age of 45 is now a woman” and “many have the added burden of being single parents.”

  4. Bloomberg reports India joins Russia and China in questioning the U.S. dollar’s dominance. “Suresh Tendulkar, an economic adviser to Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, said he is urging the government to diversify its $264.6 billion foreign-exchange reserves and hold fewer dollars.”

STHuckU: Obama should leave Bush alooone! Just like Bush did to Clinton

HUCKABEE: There’s one thing though that Biden and President Obama have got to get under control. And that is quit blaming George Bush. George Bush inherited an economy when he became president back in 2001 that was already beginning to show real signs of the stress from the breaking of the technology bubble. George Bush didn’t go out whining and complaining every day, he stood up like the president of the United States and he worked on trying to get it fixed.


    Really? Are you sure about that Huck?

   Remember how bad it was under Clinton? Having a job you had to go to and money to pay bills with sure was a drag. I mean, considering the fact that Clinton left Bush with the longest rate of economic growth and prosperity in our nation’s history, you can see just how unfair it is for Obama to blame Bush for the economic clusterfuck he was handed on 1/20/09. Seriously. It isn’t like Bush would have done that to his predecessor?

    Oh. Wait. He did.

   “When I took office, our economy was beginning a recession.” – Bush, 8/7/02

   “The president inherited a Clinton recession and turned it into the early stages of Bush prosperity.” – Secretary of Commerce Don Evans, 9/2/04

   “In terms of the economy, look, I inherited a recession, I am ending on a recession.” – Bush, 1/12/09


    Damned history. It constantly gets in the way of pretend reality we would love to live in.

    Quit spending money so we can use it for tax cuts. That seems to be the root of every “Gov spending is evil” complaint.

    Guess why the stimulus wasn’t enough? It is because the crooked corporatists in the GOP just had to have 40% of the stimulus as tax cuts, tax cuts that return only cents for every dollar the Government invests into them, and tax cuts that mainly benefit only the rich. Nevermind that the Obama bailout itself went straight to the rich as well. And what did we get for the $300 Billion or so in tax cuts that the GOP demanded had to be in the stimulus? 3 measly votes.

    The only thing better than having your cake and eating too must be making sure no one else gets cake and then telling them when they are mad “Let Them Eat Cake.”

    I thought religious people were supposed to be empathetic?

    On the face of things, Mike Huckabee looks like a sane, rational person. Some even find that he has a certain charisma. I feel the same way about the carnival barker who sells elixir at the county fair. Sure he talks a good game, but if you buy his shtick watch out. The elixir selling carnival barker, much like Huckabee, is selling you crap, and, much like Huckabee and the rest of the GOP, if you want your money back you will never be able to find him again.

   Remind me never to take political or economic advice from someone who doesn’t believe in evolution or a woman’s right to chose.

   If it was up to Huck we would just cut taxes, halt Government spending on everything but the Military and Faith based initiatives, and pray for the Bush Depression to go away.

   Good luck with that.

   And for future reference, the next time someone  ( especially if that someone is Mike Huckabee) thinks Mike Huckabee has advice for us on the economy or anything President Obama should do regarding the Bush Administration, would someone please tell him to Shut The Huck Up!


Did you know…?

What the heck. Let’s play hookey.

Greenwald has an interesting piece today on the Uighers. He references an article from the NYT this morning which reports:

The Chinese state news agency reported Monday that 156 people were killed and more than 800 injured when rioters clashed with the police in a regional capital in western China after days of rising tensions between members of the Uighur ethnic group and Han Chinese.

The casualty toll, if confirmed, would make this the deadliest outbreak of violence in China in many years.

So, it being Monday (laundry day), I wandered off on another google-chase.


Weekly Torture Action Letter 16 – Dear Friends And Family

Welcome to the Dog’s on going letter writing campaign for torture accountability. Most Monday’s we write to the decision makers in the nation in order to prod them in the right direction on the issue of torture. How it works is the Dog provides the letter and the links and you provide the action by either cutting and pasting the letter or writing your own.

Originally posted at Squarestate.net

Andrew Sullivan’s “Obama Keeps His Cool”: A Critique

Andrew Sullivan, whose blog I follow regularly now that it has important coverage of Iran’s war of position (some other good folks to follow are Nico Pitney of Huffingtonpost.com, and Saeed Valadbaygi) has a column on Times Online: “Barack Obama keeps his cool in hothead Washington.”  This is pretty much an “Obama has the right idea in mind for the long run” editorial.  Now, far be it from me to criticize “keeping cool” as an attitude, but IMHO there are concerns about all this that need to be raised.

(crossposted at Big Orange)

A crisis of cowardice

When FDR famously said that we need only fear “fear itself,” he was only partly right. The greater danger in modern American politics turns out to be political cowardice. For while we are all susceptible to fear, it is the coward, the person who is unreasonably and excessively afraid who poses the greatest danger in challenging times.

Barak Obama is a coward. His cowardice is evident in the clear record of fearful inaction that is now too long and consistent to explain away as 11-dimensional chess moves:

1. Obama’s cowardly deference to the anti-gay bigots (More DADT)

2. Obama’s cowardly capitulation to the Military-Industrial-Complex (“There is no peace dividend”)

3. Obama’s cowardly subservience to Goldman Sachs and the rest of the gangster financial industry (Trillions in future taxpayer liability to pay astronomical Wall Street salaries and bonuses)

4. Obama’s cowardly protection of the coverage-denying medical insurance industry. (The “public option” will emerge as a mangled and inadequate program so feeble that it will continue the dominance of the insurance companies and provide only token relief to the underinsured.)

But Obama’s greatest and most pernicious act of cowardice is his abject failure to restore belief in the competence and authority of government. Ronald Reagan’s infamous acts of civic vandalism (“Government is the problem”) will not be undone by Barak Obama, because Obama is too cowardly to challenge the ideological legacy of the Gipper. Vast new government-directed employment programs are the only hope for reversing the steady growth of joblessness in America. Only vigorous Federal programs aimed at energy independence and rebuilding national transportation infrastructure can put millions of American’s back to work. But Barak Obama is afraid to do what FDR did: make the US Government a primary engine for the revitalization of America.

Obama is a coward, and America will pay a heavy price for his failure to confront our great economic problems with the necessary courage.

Parasite Petey: the GOP’s new Rovian lightning rod

Well, it’s official. I have the stupidest Congresscritter on the planet.

“I’ve seen so many good people the last few days, who aren’t going to get credit for anything,” he said, “and then I see this guy, who’s really a lowlife, and he’s being treated like a hero of civilization.”

Funny, I feel the exact same way about George W. Bush.

Jackson had problems, sure, but you should be doing your own laundry first, Parasite Petey. And if you think that the American public doesn’t know about how some of the KBR/Halliburton/Saudi connected predators attached themselves to Jackson and his money during the last few years of his life, you are as clueless as you wish WE were. Given the fact that Jackson’s shady doctor and even shadier doctor’s lawyer have direct links to Cheney’s shadow government, you’re not doing anything to assuage the conspiracy theorists who suspect that he was offed to collect on the tour insurance.

Jackson has his own problems but he’s paying for them now, and depend upon it someday you’re going to have to face that judge yourself and answer for all the innocent blood you’ve shed with your warmongering policies. Whatever his faults, at least he was never responsible for another human being’s DEATH on this earth, and yes that includes the 5000 Americans you pretend to support who have died in the unnecessary Iraq war.

Never voted for Parasite Petey, never will. I hope Albany will finally get it’s act together and redistrict you out of existence, you Rethuglican dinosaur.

Incidentally, this story also sets off my “chaff” meter. It’s a deliberate, sensationalist Rovian style distraction issue meant to get the American public’s attention away from something else.

What’s the something else? Well, it could be the fact that the Israeli Navy intercepted a humanitarian ship filled with medical supplies and children’s toys bound for Gaza despite the fact that it was not in Israeli waters, and held former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney and 20 other human rights activists for several days without charge or trial.

Or it could be an effort to divert scrutiny away from post-resignation Sarah Palin. (Le Yawn, good riddance, don’t let the helicopter blade hit you in the ass on the way out.)

Or it could be an effort to completely distract the American public from the fact that next week representatives from Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth are going to present scientific evidence alongside their call for a re-investigation of the 9/11 attacks at a National Architecture conference in Washington DC. Support for a SCIENTIFIC re-investigation of the events of 9/11 is growing in various communities, especially in the light of the discovery by scientists of military-grade nanothermite particles in four different WTC dust samples. Over 60,000 residents of New York City have signed a petition to put a checkbox vote for a re-investigation of 9/11 on the next election ballot. Although not a resident of the city proper, I am listed as a signatory on the concurrent petition provided for families of victims, survivors, and first responders.

Yeah, I could see a few of these news items getting Rove and his buddies a little nervous. Bush is gone, Palin is gone (hmmm, and Rove didn’t like that – wonder if she simply decided not to volunteer for it?); so congratulations, Parasite Petey. You’re the GOP’s new lightning rod. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

Docudharma Times Monday July 6

Monday’s Headlines:

Police raid at gay club in Texas stirs ugly memories

Devastation in Zambia as climate change brings early flooding

Daniel Howden: I ran for fun. But my friend Elijah didn’t

Victims of Tamil Tiger war hit by Sri Lanka tax on aid workers

Kyrgyzstan weighs opium as industry

Dmitry Medvedev starts nuclear arms talks with missile shield demand

G8 summit: Bob Geldof forces Silvio Berlusconi to apologise over missing aid

Iranians find new ways to keep protests alive

Israel’s settlements in West Bank present a major hurdle

Army foils Zelaya’s bid to return

Familiar Players in Health Bill Lobbying

Firms Are Enlisting Ex-Lawmakers, Aides

By Dan Eggen and Kimberly Kindy

Washington Post Staff Writers

Monday, July 6, 2009

The nation’s largest insurers, hospitals and medical groups have hired more than 350 former government staff members and retired members of Congress in hopes of influencing their old bosses and colleagues, according to an analysis of lobbying disclosures and other records.The tactic is so widespread that three of every four major health-care firms have at least one former insider on their lobbying payrolls, according to The Washington Post’s analysis.

Nearly half of the insiders previously worked for the key committees and lawmakers, including  Sens. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and  Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa), debating whether to adopt a public insurance option opposed by major industry groups.

 Scores Killed in Clashes in Western China


Published: July 6, 2009

BEIJING – The Chinese state news agency reported Monday that at least 140 people were killed and 816 injured when rioters clashed with the police in a regional capital in western China after days of rising tensions between Muslim Uighurs and Han Chinese.

The casualty toll, if confirmed, would make this the deadliest outbreak of violence in China in many years.

The rioting broke out Sunday afternoon in a large market area of Urumqi, the capital of the vast, restive desert region of Xinjiang, and lasted for several hours before riot police officers and paramilitary or military troops locked down the Uighur quarter of the city, according to witnesses and photographs of the riot.


Judge approves plan to sell G.M.’s assets

Sale to new, government-backed company part of bankruptcy proceedings

By Michael J. de la Merced

A federal judge late on Sunday approved a plan by General Motors to sell its best assets to a new, government-backed company, a crucial step for the automaker to restructure and complete its trip through bankruptcy court.

The decision by the judge, Robert E. Gerber, of Federal Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan, came after three days of hearings to address the 850 objections to the restructuring plan and after he received a revised sale order from G.M.’s lawyers.

In his 95-page opinion, Judge Gerber wrote that he agreed with G.M.’s main contention: that the asset sale was needed to preserve its business, in the face of steep losses and government financing that is slated to run out by the end of the week.

Goldman Sachs and the Real Global Warming Hoax

The hits just keep coming for the Empire of Avarice, the Great Satan that is Goldman Sachs. As Matt Taibbi’s brilliant expose The Great American Bubble Machine continues to spread across the internet there is chaotic shuffling around the feeding troughs by Wall Street’s big piggies. It is now conventional wisdom on both the street itself and the whorehouse in D.C. that there must be a savage campaign to use the pocket media to take down Taibbi with extreme prejudice. The good ole bread and butter “conspiracy theorist” tag is to be the weapon of choice. According to this story by the Independent’s Stephen Foley, the Great Satan’s oily mouthpiece chimes in with these old warhorses (Propaganda 101) –

In keeping with the hyperbole of the row, Goldman’s wonderfully arch spokesman Lucas van Praag described the piece as “an hysterical compilation of conspiracy theories,” adding: “Notable ones missing are Goldman Sachs as the third shooter [in John F Kennedy’s assassination] and faking the first lunar landing.”

Muse in the Morning

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Muse in the Morning

2009 Poems

Circular Rainbow

Unlock your Mind

Words and images

wrapped in sounds

and silence

tracing a pathway

from here to there

beginning to end

With any luck

or perhaps skill

meaning is transferred

from me to you

and learning


The transaction


free of charge

to anyone

who is open

to the experience

–Robyn Elaine Serven

–January 2, 2009

Late Night Karaoke

The Tubes

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