Saturday, April 24, 2004

This is pure rumor-mongering, but it is fun anyway. The WaPo published this little story (I link to the Houston Chronicle who picked it up) where Condi was was heard referring to Shrub as her "husb..." before pausing and starting over.

This story was running throughout the "blogiverse" for one or two days. It seemed like internet BS to me. However, it appears to have actually happened.

I don't put much stock in what it signifies, because I screw up like that all the time. I commonly refer to my teenage son using the name of our dog. Of course they do have a lot of similarities.

Anyway, the story is here.

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Glossary of the Iraqi Occupation



Paul de Rooij at Counterpoint has compiled an excellent glossary of the language of the occupation. So when you here the BS and CNN or Faux News you can understand what is really meant:

The Glossary - Abused terminology Translation



Al-Qa'ida = Bogeyman Rex.


There was no link between Al-Qa'ida and pre-2003 Iraq, and even now, the US can't point to evidence of an Iraqi connection.

Ambassador = Proconsul.

It is rather odd to call Paul Bremer an ambassador; the man even wears army boots!

Anti-Iraq forces = Catchall Opposition -- (and clear example of doublespeak).

"Soon after the Occupation, the United States and its allies--military and ideological--referred to the Iraqi resistance as 'foreign elements' 'terrorists' or 'former loyalists of the Saddam regime'. This phraseology has now become redundant and US military spokesman are now referring to the guerrillas as 'anti-Iraqi forces' as if to suggest that the US, British, [...] and Polish troops represent Iraq but the Iraqis who resist the occupation are anti-Iraqi."
--Tariq Ali, "The Iraqi Resistance: a New Phase", CounterPunch, April 10, 2004.

Referring to many groups conveys the impression that a significant segment of the population is ganging up against the US, and this is counter to the propaganda claim that the opposition is a "small minority". Furthermore, Americans, including Bush, are notorious for not knowing who is who in a country. So, forget the details, and go for a catchall group!

Avenge = Kill 100X of theirs for each one of ours.

"Iraqi history is already being written. In revenge for the brutal killing of four American mercenaries -- for that is what they were -- US Marines carried out a massacre of hundreds of women and children and guerillas in the Sunni Muslim city of Fallujah. The US military says that the vast majority of the dead were militants. Untrue, say the doctors. But the hundreds of dead, many of whom were indeed civilians, were a shameful reflection on the rabble of American soldiery who conducted these undisciplined attacks on Fallujah."
--Robert Fisk, "By endorsing Ariel Sharon's plan George Bush has legitimised terrorism", The Independent, April 16, 2004.

NB: the principle of avenging the occupier's losses by collective punishment is a war crime. In Lidice during World War II, Germans killed at least 172 civilians to "avenge" some of their own, and this was considered a war crime. In Fallujah, the killing of four mercenaries has resulted in "hundreds" of Iraqi civilians killed. Ariel Sharon would approve.


etc.

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Friday, April 23, 2004

First of all, as always, ignore the ads at the top of the page.



The General Assaults My Funny Bone, and Overwhelms My Metaphors With Superior Firepower


Us bloggers are for the most part gossip mongers and part town criers. Very few of us are actual journalists (especially me). We just find interesting articles in various places and try to point you, our humble readers (Hello, is there anybody out there?) to these stories. Some of us are more clever in our ways of delivering these articles to you.

Commonly, many blogs will write about the same article. Recently I wrote a short blurb pointing you to an article in the WaPo about Jamiel Terry and his father, Randall Terry (see below). In general I wasn't trying to be funny and I was kind of in a hurry when I posted about this article. That said, I just linked to Jesus' General and read his response to the same article. My first thoughts were - well I don't know what my first thoughts were because I was laughing so hard I couldn't think. However, my following thoughts were "Bubba, you will never be able to write like that. This guy is funny. This guy has talent. You are just a hack." If you haven't checked out the General, you really should.

Oh well, I guess I'll keep hacking away.

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Please ignore the ads a the top of this page - Especially if they ar for the RNC or Bush!!!!!!



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Thursday, April 22, 2004

The Christian Right Freaks Out – What Happens When Your Kid Outs Himself

The Washington Post has a great article on Randall Terry’s son Jamiel who recently went public with his homosexuality. Randall Terry was a leader in the anti-abortion movement and recently has been leading the fight against gay unions. Needless to say, his son coming out publicly as gay is a problem – similar to Dick Cheney’s problem of having a lesbian daughter.

Of course Randall Terry is just like all these other Christian Taliban types – like Jim Baker, Jimmy Swaggart, William Bennett – a fallible man intoxicated with his own power and prone to hypocrisy.

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Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Kerry the War Hero


Up until now, most of my posts have been bitch sessions about the Bush administration. Today I am happy to post a wonderful article from the AP about Kerry as a young man in the Navy. I will contrast this article in the future against our current President - the former Lt. AWOL.

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Let’s talk about George Bush and why he shouldn’t be President

First of all, by most accounts, I should be a Republican. I am pushing 50 years old. I work as a professional for an oil company. I have friends who work for Halliburton and have spoken that Company’s name many times without cursing before or after using it. I live in a white-flight suburb of Houston surrounded by Bush, DeLay, Rove Republicans (ie. “The Belly of the Beast”). Hell, I even like to play golf. So why in God's name does this guy tick me off so much.


1. He lied to the American public about the dangers posed by Iraq (WMD, connections with Al Quaeda and connection to 9/11) and convinced us to preemptively attack a country that was basically defenseless. There are so many aspects to this that people will be writing books about it for decades. As far as I am concerned, the whole administration should be brought up on charges of war crimes.

2. He started a war in Afghanistan and didn’t finish it because he wanted to pursue Iraq. This allowed Al Quaeda to escape and morph into an even more amorphous and diffuse force throughout the world. Not only that, but he left a failed state in the wake of our miltary’s departure that continues to be a breeding ground for terrorism.

3. He deceived the American public as to the cost of his immoral war. He continues to obfuscate on this question every chance he has.

4. He politics on fear. He appeals to the worst side of us as humans – our fear based on ignorance.

5. His foray into Iraq has made America less safe in the world. It has driven friends and allies away from us. It has made the word American or USA almost a curse word in many languages throughout the world. This is a fact that many Americans, much less Republicans, don’t want to admit to.

6. His view of the world is black and white. You are either with us or you are with the terrorists. Political dissent gives succor to the enemy.

7. In public speaking and private interviews he says over and over again things that seem to indicate that he BELIEVES he is God’s messenger.

8. His public concept of “WAR” is one that is so encompassing I cannot see how we will ever be out of a state of war. He uses his “War on terror” as an excuse to encroach on the civil liberties of US citizens, even to the point of denying the right of habeas corpus to US citizens. Moreover, he uses that excuse to keep 600+ people locked up in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in solitary isolation, because they are enemy combatants. I have never heard one word from the Bush Administration as to what the final disposition of these people will be. I truly believe they intend to keep them locked up until they die.

9. He is the leader of a political party that has taken a projected 5 trillion dollar surplus and turned it into a projected multi-trillion dollar deficit. I don’t blame Bush entirely for this, but he has shown no leadership on the domestic economic front other than to pursue payback tax cuts for his political supporters. His unfunded war along with his tax cuts and other piss poor domestic programs have put a huge future burden not only on me but on my kids too.

I could do this all day, especially with respect to Iraq, but that is probably enough for now.



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OK, so everybody who blogs and has liberal leanings reads Eschaton, Talking Points Memo, Daily Kos etc. - and so they should. These guys are great. However, there are a lot of blogs out there, and these people have something to say too. So once a week I am going to try to feature a blog that usually doesn't get a lot of traffic or comments.

This weeks featured blog is Fuzzy Puppy. Go on over there and make a comment. Let Lisa know you are reading her stuff.

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Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Yeah - what Atrios says!

Blood and Treasure

One of the rarely addressed questions by the war fans is how much is too much? Once upon a time the reason for the war was the inevitable "mushroom cloud" - and since that's sort of like the infinite cost, it would be worth almost any expense to stop it.

But, now that the justification has mostly been reduced to "saddam was a bad guy and we're liberating the people," I'm curious if any of the war fans have a limit? Is there any cost, financial or in lives at which point they'd decide it wasn't worth it? 1,000? 10,000? 50,000 soldiers? $400 billion, $750 billion, $1 trillion?

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US Military Fatalities in Iraq

Always good to look at this every once in a while. It is a good indicator of how things are going over there despite the spin you hear on the news. Of course, this is only one indicator and only shows US military fatalities. Non military and Non-US fatalities are not covered.

I keep a link to this graph on the sidebar. The graph is updated frequently.


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Monday, April 19, 2004

Presidential Press Conference III


I don't really have a big problem with having a scripted press conference where the President has the questions ahead of time (after all, he is an idiot - he needs a little help). What I do mind is when the mainstream press does not own up to this fact and pretends that the event is mano-a-mano combat between two equal adversaries. However, if what Ron Suskind is quoted here saying is true then we the public are really being duped.

One of Suskind's most severe critiques of Bush was not only Bush's lack of press conferences but also his management of those conferences.

For each press conference, the White House press secretary asks the reporters for their questions, selects six or seven of the questions to answer and those reporters are the only ones called upon to ask their questions during the press conference, Suskind said.

This system makes it so that the president has answers already prepared for questions that he knows will be asked, Suskind said.

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Famous Quotes

This has been posted in a lot of places in the recent past, but it's worth repeating. It shows how much smarter Shrub's daddy was than he is.

"We should not march into Baghdad . . . . To occupy Iraq would instantly shatter our coalition, turning the whole Arab world against us, and make a broken tyrant into a latter-day Arab hero . . . assigning young soldiers to a fruitless hunt for a securely entrenched dictator and condemning them to fight in what would be an unwinnable urban guerrilla war. It could only plunge that part of the world into even greater instability."
- Former President, George Bush, in his 1998 book "A World Transformed"

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Sunday, April 18, 2004

Disgusting stories in the news


Here's a story that will just warm your heart. We invade a foreign country, subjugate the people, then try to get them to fight for us against their own people. When they don't obey our orders to kill their fellow countrymen, we arrest them.

US holding 200 Iraqis who refused to fight

BAGHDAD, April 17: US forces have detained around 200 Iraqi paramilitary soldiers who refused to take part in a US offensive against Fallujah, their former comrades said on Friday.

The US military declined to confirm whether the men were being held. Senior officials play down the significance of such incidents but, asked about reports of mutiny among Iraqi troops, have acknowledged a "command failure" took place during the Fallujah offensive.

Soldiers from the Baghdad-based 36th Security Brigade, part of the Iraqi Civil Defence Corps (ICDC), said last week US commanders took them at night to Fallujah, where US forces were massing to crush a growing resistance.

"They told us to attack the city and we were astonished. How could an Iraqi fight an Iraqi like this? This meant that nothing had changed from the Saddam Hussein days. We refused en masse," said Ali al Shamari.

US Marines began a major assault on Fallujah on April 5 after the killing and mutilation of four US private security guards in the city the previous week. Doctors say more than 600 Iraqis have died in fighting in the city since then.



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Keeping track of your neighbors political activity

Hey I'm all for openness and transparency in politics, but on some level the power of the internet and tools like this kind of give me the Willies.

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Aargh


Unfortunately I just did a Google search and found out that mine is not the only blog titled “Belly of the Beast”. There is another one affiliated with (God forbid) a right wing radio station in California . Well I’m not changing the name of mine yet.

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