Archive for September, 2007


John Bolton Gets Nostalgic

September 30, 2007

boultonmup.jpgI’m picking this for quote of the week, delivered by John Bolton while discussing what should be done about the Iran situation:

“If we were to strike Iran it should be accompanied by an effort at regime change … The US once had the capability to engineer the clandestine overthrow of governments. I wish we could get it back,” he said.

What Bolton is referring to, of course, is this.  Nothing quite like the spooks of yesteryear, compared to the moonbats that are inhabiting the CIA these days, right?

I’m not sure why he thinks of the exercise as a dead practice though.  There’s word that Bush and Cheney at least making an effort at it in Iran currently.

And Johnnyboy, it isn’t particularly “clandestine” when you’re telling the media about it, is it? 


Limbaugh Whines: They’re Quoting My Words! It’s a Smear Campaign!

September 28, 2007

“Smear,” in this case, being defined as having his own words quoted and reported.*

The media, bloggers and even members of Congress are all going ape over Rush Limbaugh’s use of the phrase “phony soldiers”.  It’s been leading memeorandum all day long. 

I gotta tell ya though. it’s silly.  Just like the outrage over MoveOn’s “Betray us” ad.  In fact, the way this is playing out, it looks like the Limbaugh outrage is retaliation for the MoveOn fracas.  Heck, there’s even another “resolution to condemn” about to be presented in the House.

Is this political proxy war for real?  I mean, why in the heck should the actions or words of friggin Rush Limbaugh or MoveOn be brought before Congress?  It’s childish, and a waste of the Congress’ time.  Besides, who the heck cares what Limbaugh says?  I listen to the guy on the radio on my way to work every other day and I swear that in the 15 minutes I catch he must spout out 1 or 2 things that’s sure to make someone’s blood pressure go up.  I really hate to sound like I’m defending Limbaugh here, but this looks like some seriously trumped up nonsense.  It’s not as if some soldier out there who opposed the war is going to go cry in the corner because Rush freakin’ Limbaugh said “phony” on the radio.  I would think that a “real” soldier would just call Limbaugh an idiot and change the station.

Also, to make this big a deal out of this just serves to stroke Rush’s ego by implying that his words are so powerful and influential that this gaffe warrants the Congress’ attention.

Anyway, the level of hype that this has created has forced Limbaugh to address it and try to explain himself.  It is kinda fun to hear him painstakingly dissect his own words:

(h/t hot air)

Related question: Why in the world would someone want to watch Rush Limbaugh speak into a microphone?

*Both the title for this post and the first sentence were stolen from LGF, for extra sass.


Another Milestone For The Blog

September 28, 2007

I got wikied. 

More precisely, someone used my post on BDS in the references section for the wikipedia entry on Bush Derangement Syndrome.

My wiki fu is a bit weak, but it looks like this was added recently

Oh well, now that I’m “big time”, I suppose I should start to pay attention to the quality of my posts around here. LOL



El Memo De Downing Street, Numero Dos

September 26, 2007

As if we needed further evidence that Bush was lying when he said “hopefully we can do this without any military action” (something he said more than once) while addressing the subject of Saddam and disarmament before the invasion , we now have this: Scoop for Spanish Daily: Transcript of Private 2003 Bush Talk Promising Iraq Invasion

NEW YORK El Pais, the highest-circulation daily in Spain, today published what it said was the transcript of a private talk between President George W. Bush and Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar on February 22, 2003, concerning the coming U.S. invasion of Iraq. It took place at the ranch in Crawford, Texas.

The conversation took place on the President’s ranch in Crawford, Texas. The confidential transcript was prepared by Spain’s ambassador to the United States, Javier Ruperez, the paper said.

Bush purportedly said he planned to invade Iraq inf March “if there was a United Nations Security Council resolution or not….We have to get rid of Saddam. We will be in Baghdad at the end of March.”

E&P has a portion of the transcript, but since they don’t seem to have anyone on staff who is fluent in Spanish (they used a Google translator, which resulted in some mangled sentences), I’ll post what appears to be a better translation of certain sections that someone (named neil) posted in the comments section of Carpetbagger:

Bush: Chirac knows perfectly well what’s going on. His intelligence
services have explained it to him. The Arabs are giving Chirac a very
clear message: Saddam Hussein must go. The problem is that Chirac
thinks he’s Mister Arab and it’s really making our lives difficult.
But I don’t want to have a rivalry with Chirac. We’ve got different
points of view, but I’d like to leave that out of it. Give him my
best, really! The less he feels a rivalry between us, the better it is
for everyone.

Aznar: How will the resolution be combined with the inspectors’ report?

Rice: We actually won’t know until Feb. 28th, the inspectors are
giving their written report on March 1., and their appearance before
the Security Council won’t be until the 6th or 7th. We’re not
expecting much from this report. As with the others, they’ll try to
put the good along with the bad. I have the impression that Blix will
be more negative this time about the intentions of the Iraqis. After
the inspectors’ appearance before the security council we expect a
vote on our resolution within a week. The Iraqis, meanwhile, will try
to argue that they’re complying with our demands. It’s not true and
it’s not enough, but they will announce the destruction of some

Bush: This is like Chinese water torture. We’ve got to put an end to it.

Aznar: I agree, but it would be good to have the most allies possible.
Have a little patience.

Bush: My patience has run out. I don’t think I’m going to wait beyond
the middle of March.

Aznar: I’m not asking for you to have infinite patience. Just that you
do what’s possible to line everybody up.

Bush: Countries like Mexico, Chile, Angola and Cameroon must know that
this is an issue of U.S. security and act with a sense of friendship.
[Chilean President] Lagos must know that the Free Trade Agreement with
Chile is pending in the Senate and that a negative attitude could put
its ratification in danger. Angola is receiving Millenium Account
funds and these could also be in jeopardy if they don’t show us
results. And Putin should know that his attitude is putting US-Russian
relations in danger.

Aznar: Tony wants to leave it until the 14th of March.

Bush: I’d prefer the 10th. This is like a good cop, bad cop game. I
don’t care if I’m the bad cop and Tony is the good one.

Aznar: Is it true that there’s some chance that Saddam Hussein will go
into exile?

Bush: Yes, there’s a possibility. He might even be assassinated.

Aznar: Exile with a guarantee?

Bush: No guarantees. He’s a thief, a terrorist, a war criminal.
Compared to Saddam, Milosevic was like Mother Teresa. When we go in,
we’re going to discover a lot more crimes and we’re going to take them
to the International Tribune in the Hague. Saddam Hussein thinks he’s
already escaped. He thinks France and Germany have stopped the process
of holding him accountable. He also thinks the demonstrations last
week protected him. And he thinks I’m weakened. But the people around
him know that that’s not how things are. They know that their future
lies in exile or else in a coffin. That’s why it’s so important to
keep the pressure on him. Gaddafi told us indirectly that this is the
only way to stop him. The only strategy Saddam Hussein has is to
delay, delay, delay.

Aznar: Really, the greatest success would be to win without firing a
single shot or entering Baghdad.

Bush: For me this would be the perfect solution. I don’t want war. I
know what war is. I know it brings destruction and death. I’m the one
who has to console the mothers and the widows of the dead. Of course
this would be the best solution. It would save us $50 billion, too.

Aznar: What we’re doing is a very profound change for Spain and for
the Spanish people. We’re changing the policy that the country has
followed for the last 200 years.

Bush: I’m guided by a historical sense of responsibility, same as you.
When history judges us in a few years, I don’t want people to ask why
Bush, or Aznar, or Blair didn’t face up to their responsibilities. In
the end, what people want is to enjoy freedom. Not long ago, in
Romania, they reminded me of the example of Ceausescu: all it took was
for a woman to call him a liar for the whole repressive facade to
crash down. This is the irrepressible power of freedom. I’m convinced
that I’ll get the resolution.

Aznar: That would be for the best.

Bush: I made the decision to go to the Security Council. Despite
disagreement in my administration, I told my people that we’ve got to
work with our friends. It would be wonderful to count on a second

Aznar: The only thing that worries me is your optimism.

Bush: I’m optimistic because I believe I’m right. I’m at peace with
We’ve been put up against a serious threat to peace. It really
irritates me to think about the Europeans’ insensibility towards the
suffering that Saddam Hussein inflicted on the Iraqis. Maybe because
he’s brown, he’s far away, he’s Muslim, a lot of Europeans think
there’s no problem. I won’t forget what [Javier] Solana told me once:
Why do we Americans think that Europeans are antisemites and incapable
of facing up to their responsibilities? This defensive attitude is
terrible. I have to recognize that Kofi Annan and I have magnificent

Aznar: He shares your ethical preoccupations.

Bush: The more the Europeans attack me, the stronger I am in the United States.

Aznar: We’ll have to make the Europeans appreciate your strength.

From what I can tell, this isn’t the entire transcript.  It might, however, be enough of the juicy parts.  What’s particularly interesting isn’t just the fact that it reveals, once again, that just about everything Bush was saying publicly about Iraq in the months leading up to the invasion was just a dog and pony show, but it provides further proof that he was absolutely clueless about what the hell he was getting us into.   Basically, Bush is saying, “we’re going in”, “the other European leaders don’t know what they’re talking about”, and a token, “I know war sucks, but we do what we gotta do”.

I’ll post more when it becomes available.


9/11 Is Now A Fundraising Gimmick

September 25, 2007

A cheap gimmick, at that:  Giuliani party seeks $9.11 per person

A supporter of Rudy Giuliani’s is throwing a party that aims to raise $9.11 per person for the Republican’s presidential campaign.

Abraham Sofaer is having a fundraiser at his Palo Alto, Calif., home on Wednesday, when Giuliani backers across the country are participating in the campaign’s national house party night.

My goodness, what’s next?

Make your own clipart like this @

Make your own clipart like this @


Flame Warrior Profile: Cognito

September 21, 2007

I’ve read enough threads on LGF to notice that when the lizards direct some criticism at the “MSM”, you can pretty much take it to the bank that one member in particular will show up and vigorously debate the matter…


I’ve seen this netizen engage in quite a few marathon debates over this kind of thing, but what I witnessed this evening deserves special recognition.  The battle began at 6PM PDT, and Cognito managed to rattle off 37 posts (and counting) in less than 2 hours in an impressive display of lizard swarm management.   I’m not really sure who won, but the display of endurance alone is worth a thread.

Here’s where it all began. 


The “Petraeus Is Above Criticism” Resolution

September 20, 2007

OK, this whole outrage over the full-page ad in the NYT has gone a little too far.  Today, the Senate passed a resolution written “to specifically repudiate the unwarranted personal attack on General Petraeus by the liberal activist group”.

The text of the resolution begins with the acknowledgement that the Senate voted unanimously in approval of Petraeus’s selection for the job back in January, followed by a rundown of his resume.  Then, it required that one agree with this statement:

(8) A recent attack through a full-page advertisement in the New York Times by the liberal activist group,, impugns the honor and integrity of General Petraeus and all the members of the United States Armed Forces.

While the preceding 7 findings were a matter of relatively indisputable fact, this last one was clearly a matter of opinion.  While one might agree that the ad was obviously directed at Petraeus, I consider it a bit of a stretch to say that it “impugns the honor and integrity” of “all the members of the United States Armed Forces”.  This could be one basis for voting negative on this resolution, even before you get to the “sense of the Senate” part.  That part, incidentally, contained this rather vague statement:

(2) to strongly condemn any effort to attack the honor and integrity of General Petraeus and all the members of the United States Armed Forces

What is an “attack”, really?…and… According to who? Could it be any disagreement with anything he states?  This is the crux of my problem with the resolution.  If you put the MoveOn ad aside for a second, this appears to be a politically motivated effort to solidify a sense of Petraeus’ infallibility. This could be dangerous territory. The Senate could effectively be signing on to the notion that they cannot question the actions, statements or motivations of people simply because they are in the military. I mean, read it again. It’s a broad and sweeping statement. 

The final vote was 72-25 in favor, with notable nays coming from presidential candidates Clinton and Dodd.  Other Dem hopefuls, Obama and Biden, didn’t vote. 

Update:  As predicted, the blogosphere is going nuts over this, complete with the usual spin.  Again, my personal conclusion is that you could support Petraeus, the military and the mission in Iraq and still vote negatively on the resolution, simply because it is technically too ambiguous and seems crafted in an effort to give the military (and Petraeus specifically) too much power in the political arena.  At the same time, a vote of nay doesn’t necessarily “support” the actions of MoveOn.  A negative vote on this could be nothing more than unwillingness to be subjected to someone’s opinion on what exactly an “attack” is.  To me, he idea that a disagreement over a decision, course of action, or even a claim could be seen as an “attack” worthy of “condemnation” is more than a little unsettling, and I think that this resolution leaves that door open.  Nevermind the fact that this resolution insulates Petraeus (and, depending how you read it, “all the United States Armed Forces”) from accusations of being disingenuous or outright lying even if it was blatantly obvious that he (they) were. 

Oh well, it passed.  I suppose that it will be interesting to see what effect this has over the debate.