Thursday, November 16, 2006

Top Ten Cloves: Reasons Why Oprah Wasn’t Invited To Tom Cruise-Katie Holmes Wedding

News Item: Tom to O: Cross Me, I Cross You (Off The List)

10. Heard she was backing John Murtha for House Leader and Tom’s a Steny Hoyer-kind-of-guy

9. Is trying to go with a “Silent Wedding” and, chances are, Oprah would be bustin’ out all over the place

8. After pondering inviting her, Cruise felt Oprah, just like Matt Lauer, was “too glib”

7. With all the crap she has, she’d probably be regifting

6. Vatican City a little upset about her scoop interview with Pope Benedict XVI

5. Would likely bring that non-girlfriend-girlfriend Gayle King and that would turn the wedding into a big gay thing

4. Had Ann Coulter handled the invites so who knows what the hell she wrote or who she sent them to

3. Intentionally dissed her, in case wedding goes bad, can make comeback with big PR/public apology, like he did with Brooke Shields

2. Feared she’d make Cruise give everyone in the church a new automobile

1. Not only did Oprah watch that episode of “South Park, she’s got it on DVD!

Despite the laughs, Cruise worried that if he invited Oprah to his wedding, with all her crap, she'd likely regift

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Breaking News! New White House Discord Pits Neocons Versus Bush, Baker

Cheney Launches Iran Study Group; Planning To Up Ante, Outgun Baker’s Recommendation

Rumsfeld Installed As Co-Chair; WHIG Moves Into Secret Bunker, As Neocons Draw Line, Choose Sides

Sources tell The Garlic that new, post-election divisions have erupted in the White House, leading to Vice President Dick Cheney launching his own, new Iran Study Group.

Against the backdrop of awaiting the recommendations forthcoming from the James Baker - Lee Hamilton-led Iraq Study Group, West Wing staffers are being forced to choose sides.

The two groups - WHIG (White House Iraq Group) and WHIIG (White House Iraq and Iran Group) have moved with the Vice President and now operate out of Cheney’s Secret Bunker, under the moniker of SBISG.

The firing of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld is said to have been the trigger, and that it is likely this group had already been conducting meetings. Others say it was the President refusal recently, to “out” a CIA agent with the release of a National Intelligence Estimate report, or when President Bush admitted to the existence of CIA Black Hole Prison sites.

The Neocons’ Jesus Camp

Cheney is said to have created a co-chair position with the SBISG for his longtime friend Rumsfeld, and former Vice President Chief of Staff I. Lewis (Scooter) Libby Libby is also said to be working, at least up until his trial begins in January, with the SBISG.

“It’s become the Neocons Jesus Camp”, said David Aaronson, editor of What Color Is My Coat Today?, the Capital Hill Newsletter that tracks politicians who turn on their own party. “They’re not slowing down and the Vice President gave a hint to that last week when he said it was “full speed ahead.”

“They’re upping the ante,” added Aaronson, “and the plan is to outgun James Baker and his Iraq Study Group.”

President Lining Up and Fighting Back

President Bush, in a counter move against his Vice President, has initiated his own internal review of Iraq that will be separate from the Baker and is directed, squarely, to smash down Cheney’s renegade SBISG.

President Bush also had Army Gen. John P. Abizaid, head of the U.S. Central Command, testify today before the Senate Armed Services Committee, warning against a troop withdrawals or timelines in another effort to subdue Cheney’s group.

Another sign is that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice cancelled plans to attend an Asia-Pacific conference in Vietnam in order to be with the President for his policy review meetings and is said to have rebuffed advances from Cheney to join with the SBISG.

Recently, Rice touted the President’s Axis of Evil program to be successful and she has, in the past, had head-butts with Rumsfeld over admitting mistakes made in Iraq.

It’s not clear if this new Iraq Policy review by the President is part of his “Hello, I Must Be Going” policy shift, or it the pro-Bush side of the White House is looking to forge, with the Baker group, a wall to block out Cheney and Rumsfeld’ SBISG.

With Baker’s Iraq Study Group speculated to favor diplomacy and a political solution for the growing Civil War in Iraq, a recent leak of a draft of the report showed Baker recommending a “Do-Over”, with reinstalling Saddam Hussein and reinvading the country just at point of the 2008 President Election, leaving the solution of what to do to the next President-elect.

Bush’s Carlyle Group vs. Cheney’s Halliburton Company?

Cheney’s SBISG is said to favor a full, military solution and using Iraq as the launching pad to invade and occupy Iran

Some say this is a faux front in a behind-the-scenes battle between Bush’s Carlyle Group and Cheney’s Halliburton Company. Both companies have profited wildly from the Iraq invasion and occupation and the table is being set for the next move, into taking over Iran, with billions in weapon systems and services at stake.

“More likely,” according to Holly Martins, Publisher of Axis of Evil Illustrated, a quarterly publication, that is rumored to be a house magazine for the Project for The New American Century “is that Cheney is making his big move, carving out is own legacy over these last two years he’ll ever hold office.”

“It’s also a page,” added Martins, “out of his, and Rumsfeld’s ‘Armageddon Plan’ book. Both of them would have no objection, like Slim Pickens, of riding a big, ol’ Bunker Buster that was dropping down on Teheran.”

Top Ten Cloves: Ways Jack Abramoff Will Gain Favors While In Prison

News Item: Abramoff Is to Begin Sentence Today

10. Do over the prison’s commissary into Signature’s II

9. Become an Internet sensation, advancing Prisoner Rights as “LonelyJailedLobbyist15”

8. Sell the Instant Message addresses of all the “pretty boys” to Mark Foley

7. Put pressure on the White House, to get his sentence reduced, by threatening to release to media another 400 visits

6. Make money for the prison - Using connections, get Government Contract to produce purple paint for next Iraq election

5. Get former Bush Aide Claude Allen to shoplift some really good stuff that he can use as currency with other prisoners

4. Negotiate a Weekend Pass and offer to take the warden and guards on a golfing trip to Scotland

3. Use his expertise to organize the Indian inmates into building a casino

2. Turn around and bilk the Conservative Christian inmates saying he’ll lobby against the Indians building a casino

Will Jack Abramoff become an Internet sensation, advancing Prisoner Rights as “LonelyJailedLobbyist15”?

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Top Ten Cloves: Things Overheard During Newly Elected Congressmen and Congresswomen’s Capital Hill Orientation

News Item: The Grand Tour of Their New House

10. Where did Jimmy Stewart sit when he came to Washington?

9. Whatever you do, if you have a disagreement, don’t ever write a letter to Senator John McCain, or you’ll be in for it

8. We don’t have any bridges ... How do I go about getting a big, fat earmark so I can put a Bridge-To-Nowhere in my district?

7. That is a pretty weird gift from President Bush - A framed picture of the dead terrorist, Zarqawi

6. Rush Limbaugh wants to interview me later ... Should I be prepared, I mean, is he going to be all shaking and whatnot?

5. I don’t golf, but if I lobbyist wants to take me to Scotland, should I go?

4. What time do we get to tour Cheney’s Secret Bunker? And can we take pictures?

3. Are we going to get to do anything or do we have to go along with whatever the Iraq Study Group comes up with?

2. You know of any place around here where a guy can get a good massage and some meth?

1. This place is cool ... If I ever have to run in primary, and I lose ... I’m pulling a Lieberman...

I don’t golf, but if I lobbyist wants to take me to Scotland, should I go?

Monday, November 13, 2006

Breaking News! Iraq Study Group: Iraq Do-Over To Come Before 2008 Race and Vote

Baker-Hamilton To Say “Start Over”; Reinstall Saddam And Retake Country, This Time With Plans

First Step Is To Reconstruct Baghdad To Pre-2003 Invasion Look; “Maintain a public front of “victory in Iraq

Sources have shared with The Garlic a classified, first-draft of the pending Iraq-Study Group report that, stunningly, will call on President Bush to “start over” in Iraq

This, according to the draft, translates into reinstalling the recently-convicted Saddam Hussein, reinvading the country, only this time, with a plan for reconstruction and containing the insurgency.

Meeting this morning with the Iraq Study Group, headed by former Secretary of State James Baker and former Democratic Congressman Lee Hamilton, President Bush was said to be “lifted” by the panel’s briefing but said following it that "I'm not going to prejudge" the report the panel soon will issue.

President Bush also offered that he is encouraged by the report to continue with his “Hello, I Must Be Going” policy and to keep up the appearances that he is seeking advice, from multiple parties, both Republican and Democratic, on a solution for Iraq.

Study Group Pitches Plans to 2008 Elections; Cautions Bush To Cease Adding New Punctuation Into Iraq History

All of this is to take place, the draft dictates, before the 2008 Presidential election, so that, whoever is elected, can begin making plans and preparations, right at the juncture of Baghdad falling again and the recapture of Saddam Hussein.

This time, the draft says, the U.S. Forces will be greeted as liberators.

Baker and Hamilton write that the U.S. should continue with their “training of Iraqi Army” and, the “liberated”

The “liberated” referred to in the report, and unknown to the general public, has been that a certain percentage of the training conducted in Iraqi has, in fact, been auditioning regular Iraqi citizens to act “liberated”.

The Iraq Study Group Draft labels this as “essential” and “important, for television news footage to run behind the sound bites trumpeting the mission”.

To that end, the report suggests authorizing a budget to rebuild Iraq to the pre-2003 invasion, and replace and erect new statues of Saddam Hussein, for the purpose of having them ripped down during the “Liberation Celebration”.

This, notes the report, could be a point, says Baker, for President Bush, before he leaves office, to begin troop withdrawal from Iraq in order to burnish his legacy. Hamilton, is a dissenting opinion calls on the President to leave any troop withdrawing to the President-Elect, in order for that Commander-In-Chief to kick off his term on a positive note.

Both Baker and Hamilton agree that President Bush should cease inserting any commas, or other punctuation marks into Iraq history

New Box of Strategies and Seeds of Democracy To Be Recertified

Another section of the Iraq Study Group Report deals with the Bush Administrations problem with strategies.

Following the Inspector General’s report earlier this year, that indicated the White House was “out of strategies”, the group will leave with the President, a full compliment of new strategies that he can have at-the-ready. It’s not specified that the President will need to enact any of the strategies, or share them with Congress, or the next President-Elect.

Additionally, Baker and Hamilton have solved another White House problem of having “worthless seeds of democracy”, partially covered by the box of new strategies that will come with the final report. With this portion of the draft being redacted, it is clear that any new seeds of democracy that are used after the final report is issued will be certified as “good”.

Report Calls For “Maintain a public front of “victory in Iraq”; No Material In Draft On Iraqi Government Role

A surprising element of the Iraq Study Group draft shows that suggestions and recommendations by the group have already been undertaken by the President.

First comes the firing of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, most notably displayed in the report by references to “Secretary of Defense Gates”, that being former CIA Director Robert Gates, who is also a member of the Iraq Study Group.

Another calls for, in the event of the Republicans losing the Midterm elections, the White House to officially deny that the Iraq War was in any way responsible for the loss, and continue to put out “positive stories” and maintain a public front of “victory in Iraq, for this recommended plan to succeed.”

Lastly, it appears that security measures recently undertaken, and in coordination with DisneyBaghdad, came at the urging of the Iraq Study Group.

Although it was referenced in the Table of Contents with the draft reviewed by The Garlic, the corresponding section dealing with the Iraqi Government was missing or not included and there are sparse references to it in the other sections of the report.

The name “Ahmed Chalabi” appears frequently, as being part of the reinvasion of Iraq and there is one vague mention of “the opposition of Maliki” to a certain proposal in restaging the capture of Saddam Hussein and the implementation of an interim governing body.

It is widely speculated by those close to the White House and Pentagon, who has seen this draft report, that it remains a strong possibility the current Iraqi Government will be dissolved and the former Coalition Provisional Authority, L. Paul Bremer will be sent back to Iraq, to oversee the entire restaging of taking the country.

There’s also a reference to CIA Director General Michael V. Hayden, and that he continue to provide intelligence “in the manner the President has been accustomed to receiving.”

Report Has A Catch That Will Force Bush Into Action

The report wraps up with the advice to President Bush that he “strongly consider these recommendations” and acknowledges that he is under no obligation to do so, but with a catch.

If Bush does not enact the recommendations within 90-days, the Iraq Study Group will be free to market their plans to “any other third party”, opening the door for another country, possible the United Kingdom, or even Israel, taking over and being credited with downing Saddam Hussein and liberating Iraq.

“Oh, he’ll do it,” offered Harold "Ace" Larson, an analyst for the counterintelligence think tank, 'Book'em and Beat'em', and who has also seen the draft Iraq Study Group Report.

“He has too,” continued Larson. “He can’t have his legacy be both a failed domestic agenda, with Katrina being the flashing neon sign on that front, and then turning around and blowing Iraq ... Baker and Hamilton are bailing him out and it doesn’t matter how pissed off he may be about his father-thing, he’s gotta go with it.”

A leaked, draft copy of the Iraq Study Group Report suggests reinvading Iraq and authorizing a budget to rebuild the country to the pre-2003 invasion, and replace and erect new statues of Saddam Hussein, for the purpose of having them ripped down during the “Liberation Celebration”.

Chopped Garlic: Retro Bolton

Boy, they sure tore the bipartisan cup out of Bush’s hands pretty quick there last week, before he took too many sips from it (Editor’s Note: There’ll be a Garlictorial on this in the next day or two)

From his post-election day news conference, to meeting with the future leadership of the Congress ( Speaker Nancy Pelosi and then, the next day, Harry Reid and Dick Durban), it appeared that Bush had seen the light. Full speed ahead on working with the new congress, leaving Turd Blossom’s “The Math” in the rearview mirror.

So, what comes out of this new White House-version of bipartisanship? Demanding the confirmation of United Nations Ambassador John Bolton.

The Garlic riffed on this back in September (Top Ten Cloves: Ways White House Will Try To Keep John Bolton At The U.N.) so we need to wait and see if any of that comes into play.

In the meantime, stroll back to the Garlic Special - It’s A Bolton Kind Of Thursday! Our Man At The U.N. to catch up on the man, and next little firefight this Lame Duck Congress will engage in.

Does President Bush buck his pledge to work in a bipartisan fashion and ram through the Lame Duck Congress the confirmation of U.N. Ambassador John Bolton?

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Weekend Special - Sautéed Cloves 12 November 2006

In a stunning, and controversial, setback to his Acts of Atonement program, actor Mel Gibson blamed the Republican losses in the Midterm Elections on Jews

No losses, only gains, for Senator Harry Reid (D-NV)

With the Democrats sweep back into the majority, and Reid all but set to become Senate Majority Leader, he can now properly call on to court White House Counsel, and one-time Supreme Court Candidate, Harriet Miers, who earlier had told Reid that she would not date him unless he became the leader in the Senate

Vice President Dick Cheney
was reported to have a hard time accepting the Midterm elections results

It wasn't until longtime aide David Addington framed it as "the Nazi Appeasers" won, that Cheney understood the broad sweep of the Democrats

Fox News Honcho Roger Ailes
announced that with the Republican Party now in the minority for the next two-years, Fox News will be referred to as the "Unfair and Unbalanced News Network"

RNC Chairman Ken Mehlman, who announced this week he will be stepping down from his post, is reported to be on the short list to replace the Reverend Ted Haggard in the National Association of Evangelicals, Mehlman is said to be excited over the prospects of the "Big Three M's" - Megachurch, Massages and Meth

Still bristling over his firing, but remaining committed to his work, outgoing Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld took reporters on a short plane ride, to put to rest rumors, and demonstrate just how suspected terrorists travel when they undergo Extraordinary Rendition

Of Things Said, and Just What Type Of Math Are You Using There, Mr. Rove? ... The Results - The Garlic's Weekly Poll

President Bush’s rather abrupt turn to projected bipartisanship (Hey, it’s not a done deal just yet) immediately following the Midterm Elections kind of took the venom out of the Karl Rove-Ken Mehlman-built Smear Machine.

Rove may have had, and is holding to his story, “The Math”, but if you're President Bush, and roughly 60% of the country cited you as the reason they voted out the Republicans, making barbs about measuring for drapes, or having some bimbo giggle “Call Me” doesn’t quite add up to being presidential.

Hence, the steam of The Garlic’s Weekly Poll took a serious hit this past week, as the Freak Show was quiet and then there was the matter of fitting now-former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld for his well-earned, and well-deserved, Scapegoat Suit (and, quite likely, looking over and coordinating schedules, setting a time to give him a Medal of Freedom Award)

Note To The Remaining Bush Administration: When the President says of you that you’re “Doing a heck-of-a-job” or a “Fantastic Job”, that’s the signal to start packing up your desk and calling the headhunters. No need to wait for the “ding”, you’re toast ...

The Results - The Garlic's Weekly Poll October 29 - November 4 2006

Coming down to the wire, President Bush and his administration will, in all likelihood, spin the guilty verdict of Saddam Hussein in these last two days before the Midterm elections by...

1. Nancy Pelosi didn’t care about capturing Saddam or putting him on trial... She’s too busy measuring for drapes Tally 31%

2. Saying that if the Democrats had captured Saddam, John Kerry would probably want to send him to college Tally 29%

3. Harold Ford Jr. wants to take Saddam to a football game, and meet some girls, before he’s hanged Tally 22%

4. Since he already found some, Rick Santorum has a plan, for squeezing a death row confession from Saddam on where the rest of the WMD’s are hidden Tally 18%

This week’s Poll - To ease the transition for President Bush to change over to Bipartisanship for the remaining time of his term, the White House will probably...

Scroll up to the top right corner to place your vote

Okay Vanna, Let's Turn Them All Over And See What We Have ... The Garlic's Election Endorsements

Stick to the day job, right?

With this past week’s elections, The Garlic stuck its stem out (if you noticed, down along the right sidebar) with, more-or-less, the endorsement of certain candidates.

Some were out-and-out favorites, a few roots for the home team and then more, like Claire McCaskill, Jim Webb and Sherrod Brown, were just urging on some good people.

A few, much to our chagrin, didn’t make, like Tammy Duckworth, Harold Ford Jr. and Patty Wetterling. And then, of course, the major dud of a disappointment, Ned Lamont.

In the end, we went 9-5 with our Garlic Endorsements.

And we’ll live with that ... We won’t ask for a recount.

The Winners

Ted Kennedy

Deval Patrick

Sherrod Brown

Jim Webb

Claire McCaskill

John Murtha

Bob Casey

Bob Menendez

Maria Cantwell

Those That Didn’t Win

Tammy Duckworth

Kinky Friedman

Harold Ford Jr.

Patty Wetterling

Ned Lamont