Saturday, April 12, 2008

Obama Minister Wants To Nuke Small Towns!

Give it another day, or two, and we'll probably see this headline somewhere, the odds-on bet, on Faux News...

Or, the Right Wing Freakshow will serve this up, with extra, extra spicing, over the radio airwaves ...

A whole lot of panties bunched up last night, and today, (go to Memeorandum for a peek) over remarks made by Barack Obama last week, at a fundraiser in San Francisco

Here's what he said;

So, it depends on where you are, but I think it’s fair to say that the places where we are going to have to do the most work are the places where people are most cynical about government. The people are mis-appre…they’re misunderstanding why the demographics in our, in this contest have broken out as they are. Because everybody just ascribes it to ‘white working-class don’t wanna work — don’t wanna vote for the black guy.’ That’s…there were intimations of that in an article in the Sunday New York Times today - kind of implies that it’s sort of a race thing.

Here’s how it is: in a lot of these communities in big industrial states like Ohio and Pennsylvania, people have been beaten down so long. They feel so betrayed by government that when they hear a pitch that is premised on not being cynical about government, then a part of them just doesn’t buy it. And when it’s delivered by — it’s true that when it’s delivered by a 46-year-old black man named Barack Obama, then that adds another layer of skepticism.

But — so the questions you’re most likely to get about me, ‘Well, what is this guy going to do for me? What is the concrete thing?’ What they wanna hear is so we’ll give you talking points about what we’re proposing — to close tax loopholes, uh you know uh roll back the tax cuts for the top 1%, Obama’s gonna give tax breaks to uh middle-class folks and we’re gonna provide healthcare for every American.

But the truth is, is that, our challenge is to get people persuaded that we can make progress when there’s not evidence of that in their daily lives. You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.

Um, now these are in some communities, you know. I think what you’ll find is, is that people of every background — there are gonna be a mix of people, you can go in the toughest neighborhoods, you know working-class lunch-pail folks, you’ll find Obama enthusiasts. And you can go into places where you think I’d be very strong and people will just be skeptical. The important thing is that you show up and you’re doing what you’re doing.

In a phrase, forever immortalized by our Vice President ... So!

Wait a minute! ...

OMG! ... He used the word "bitter", to describe the feeling people may have, from being screwed over for too many years ...

OMG! ... He criticized Guns and Religion, inferring that they both may be a problem, that both may be a screen, a mask, to front for other problems ... They both get in the way of dealing with other, more important issues, issues that effect the daily lives of people - in small towns - and in big cities.

It's one thing for the MSM to jump on this ... They have an agenda ...Gotta serve the Corporate Party Line ... They have to keep truth out of the news, better just to offer campaign fluff and pap, like MSNBC the other day, with Tweety (and, disappointingly, David Shuster) jumping up-and-down on Obama's back over orange juice.

Orange Juice!

We just had Petraeus and Crocker in Congress, continuing to sell Bush's Iraq War (and the new one, against Iran) and there was bombshell breaking news, on how all the big cheeses in the Bush Grindhouse met regularly to map out the Torture Program, all this on top of the bleak economics of the country and these lint-heads get all lathered up over orange juice.

Help Me Mister Wizard!

Then, of course, both Duck-and-Dodge Hillary "Sniper-Fire-Survivor" Clinton and Stumblin' Bumblin John "If You Knew Sunni, Like I Know Sunni" McCain have to jump all over Obama for his remarks, calling him elitist and out-of-touch.

Please ...

What's getting lost in the din, something that doesn't exactly fit the storyline for the MSM and Cable News nitwits, is Obama, pretty much, goes helmet-less and deals with adversity straight on ... He jumps on it, and, to the best of his strong abilities, doesn't let others pen the story, or, at minimum, speak for him.

There was the "Minister Problem", so Obama goes out and hits one of the park with his Race Speech...

Now we have everyone making hay with his San Francisco comments, and he fires back, right away, with this;

Obama Responds to McCain and Clinton attacks in Terre Haute; Barack responds to criticism from Hillary Clinton and John McCain, at a town hall meeting in Indiana

Pay close attention to this story ...

There's going to more people, feverishly working with paint-and-paint-brushes, on it, than at a Benjamin Moore convention ...

And, eventually, their work will have the canvas looking like "Obama Minister Wants To Nuke Small Towns!"

It's up to you, the good people of Pennsylvania... You're next in line, so you can stand there and inhale the paint ...

Or, wake up and smell the coffee ...

Bonus Small-and-Big-Town Links

Catherine Crier: Punished for the Truth

Ezra Klein: Obama Turns All Thomas Frank On Us

Jill/Brilliant at Breakfast: Why is anyone having the vapors over this?

Jeff Fecke/Shakesville: Barack Obama Hates You

Anonymous Liberal: Going Too Far

Andrew Sullivan: The Red-Blue Divide

Top Ten Cloves: Things About The Rocket Scientists' Party, Yuri Night

News Item: Fisher: Party like a rocket scientist (It'll be fun)

10. First technical glitch of the night will spook the rocket scientists, many believing the HAL is real and in the room

9. Perhaps the only party to have a vendor who does nothing more that tape broken eyeglasses

8. Astronaut Lisa Nowak is schedule to be on hand, to autograph official NASA diapers

7. Local area Jolt Soda sales will go through the roof

6. Rocket Scientists making lots of plans, to see each other again at the Albert Party, in June

5. For the DeadHeads that show up, they'll have to be constantly reassured that it is not 1961

4. Bartenders will get boringly annoyed, after about 10-minutes, with all the rocket scientists who order a Lost In Space Martini, in the voice of Robot

3. Instead of buying a keg, they'll spend half the day designing and fabricating one

2. Parking lot fills up early - Hundreds mistook the event for "Yugo Night"

1. With so many rocket scientists in one room, we discover, when they want to derisively dismiss a colleagues' intelligence, they say "It's not ditch digging, you know"

Bonus Links

Top Ten Cloves: Other Things That NASA's Cassini May Find On Saturn's Moon Enceladus

Top Ten Cloves: Ways To Tell The Shuttle Astronauts Are Drunk

Pluto Planning Run With Independent Solar System; Takes Cues From Lieberman, Who Says May Caucus With New Galaxy

Top Ten Cloves: How Bush Administration Reacted To News of The Death Star Galaxy

Top Ten Cloves: Things About U.S. Plans to Shoot Down Broken Spy Satellite

This Date ... On The Garlic

Garlic History - On This Day

12 April 2007... On The Garlic

So It Goes ... R.I.P Billy Pilgrim

12 April 2006... On The Garlic

Breaking News - Rice Grilled; Shouting Match With Bolton; U.N Questions Rice On Iran Intentions; U.S. Urges ‘Strong Steps”; Council Presses Secretary If Adding To “Thousands Of Errors” Or Starting New Tab

Top Ten Cloves: Things Overheard While Iran Was Enriching Uranium

12 April, 2005... On The Garlic

Garlic Exclusive! Bush Moves On Making Iraq 51st State; DC Ignored; Puerto Rico Bumped Back To 52nd 'Unofficial' State

Top Ten Cloves: How Ambassador-Nominee John Bolton Really Feels About United Nations

Friday, April 11, 2008

"He is Iraq's Katrina itself"

Just as New Orleans's Ninth War will still be a moonscape when Bush goes out of office, so will Iraq.
Sadly, it's looking less, and less, likely that we will see him exit the White House, handcuffed, in a perp walk - as he so richly deserves.

Mostly due to a brain-dead, Constitution-blinders-firmly-affixed-Congress (How big an outcry from our elected representatives have you heard about the bombshell news the other day, that the torture program was choreographed directly out of the Bush Grindhouse?), he gets to wear his real, and proverbial, flightsuit and play "The Commander Guy" for a number of dwindling months.

And inhabiting the Unreality Bubble he has ensconced himself in, Lord knows what further havoc he will reek.

Especially when he's running his policy speeches up the Neocon flagpole, before he gives them.

Wants to make sure, I suppose, there's enough warmongering in it.

Juan Cole writes/reports one of the best blogs on what's happening in Iraq (and the policies behind it; Another good one is Abu Aardvark).

Cole nails the Bush Legacy;

War turns Republics into dictatorships. The logic is actually quite simple. The Constitution says that the Congress is responsible for declaring war. But in 2002 Congress turned that responsibility over to Bush, gutting the constitution and allowing the American Right to start referring to him not as president but as 'commander in chief' (that is a function of the civilian presidency, not a title.)

So Congress abdicated to Bush. Bush has abdicated to the generals in the field.

That is not a Republic. That is a military dictatorship achieved not by coup but by moral laziness.

And, as Gene Robinson notes today
, the Bush Grindhouse, cluelessly, is going through the motions, to pass this mess on to the next president.

Of course, Bush long ago lost any credibility with Congress and the American people on Iraq. It's understandable that he hides behind Petraeus's breastplate of medals and Crocker's thatch of gray hair, sending these loyal and able public servants to explicate the inexplicable: What realistic goal is the United States trying to achieve in Iraq? And in what parallel universe is this open-ended occupation making our nation safer?

Even the most basic question of any war is undefined: Who is the enemy? It was almost painful listening to Petraeus as he faced reporters yesterday and was asked whether Moqtada al-Sadr and his Mahdi Army were friend or foe. His tortured answer, translated into English, was yes.

But thanks to Cole today, the Legacy Shopping is over.
Ironically, what officers like Petraeus need from Bush is not deference but vigorous leadership in the political realm. Bush needs to intervene to work for political reconciliation in Iraq if Petraeus's military achievements are to bear fruit. But Bush seems incapable of actually conducting policy, as opposed to starting wars. Bush happened to Iraq just as he happened to New Orleans. He cannot do the hard work of patiently addressing disasters and ameliorating them. He just wants to set people to fighting. Crush the Sadr Movement, perhaps the most popular political movement in Iraq? He's all for it. Risk provoking a wider conflagration in the Middle East by worsening relations with Iran? Sounds like a great idea to him. Bush campaigned on being a 'uniter not a divider' in 2000. In fact, he is the ultimate Divider, and leaves burning buildings, millions of refugees, and hundreds of thousands of cadavers in his wake. He is not Iraq's Brownie. He is Iraq's Katrina itself.

Just as New Orleans's Ninth War will still be a moonscape when Bush goes out of office, so will Iraq.


That's a nutshell, alright ... A pretty, darned good nutshell I would say.

Last summer, The Garlic put forth a proposal - and it's still open and viable - that could end this madness.

Please, someone, step up and go for it!

Bonus Links

Amy Goodman: “Iraq Does Not Exist Anymore”: Journalist Nir Rosen on How the U.S. Invasion of Iraq Has Led to Ethnic Cleansing, a Worsening Refugee Crisis and the Destabilization of the Middle East

Bob Herbert: The $2 Trillion Nightmare

12 Former Army Captains: The Real Iraq We Knew

Wanted Dead Or ... Ahh, The Hell With It .. I'll Let The Next President Get'em ...

New Bush Export - Preemptive Horseshit!

Absolutely Ridiculous!

Well, the "In An Absolut World" ad saga we posted about last week has come to an end.

Absolut vodka pulls ad showing California in Mexico

Although it was not shown in the United States, U.S. media outlets picked up on the ad, and after a barrage of complaints, Absolut's maker said on Sunday the ad campaign would cease.

Defending the campaign last week, Absolut maker Vin & Spirit said the ad was created "with a Mexican sensibility" and was not meant for the U.S. market.

"In no way was this meant to offend or disparage, nor does it advocate an altering of borders, nor does it lend support to any anti-American sentiment, nor does it reflect immigration issues," a spokeswoman wrote on Absolut's Web site.

"Instead, it hearkens to a time which the population of Mexico may feel was more ideal," she wrote.

Absolut's blog cite has received more than a thousand comments since the ad campaign was launched a few weeks ago, with many calling for boycotts of the Swedish company.
Complaints indeed.

Mostly from the Right Wing Freakshow, led by Michelle "Stalkin' Malkin, who fired up her crystal ball, sending out in a frenzy, her Flying Monkeys to go and harass people at the Ad Agency that created the most entertaining advertisement.

This led John Cole, over on Balloon Juice to fire back;
Apparently unaware that corporations compete in a global market and sometimes engage in niche advertising, occasionally placing different ads in different countries, our frothing lunatics are in high dudgeon over this grave insult to white America. Sometimes, the treachery is so bad that these evil America hating corporations even use foreign languages in their commercials and in their advertising!

This, of course, means that Queen Outrage herself has kicked into high gear, with numerous posts on the matter, inevitably leading to the type of citizen activism that is much approved among this crowd - harassing people who have jobs.
And Sean Hackbarth, over on The American Mind.

Wrapping it up is Laura Martinez, the blogger whose post of the Absolut Ad was discovered by the nitwits,

Writing this week, in Ad Age, Martinez penned "I Created an Absolut Ruckus; How a Country-Specific Ad Crossed the Border";
The story behind such brouhaha began on Sunday, March 16, when, sitting by my mother's sick bed in a Mexico City hospital, I started browsing Quién, the Grupo Expansión-owned ultimate source for celebrity and socialite gossip. Buried in a sea of uninteresting pictures and pseudo-articles, I found the following Absolut Vodka ad from the series "In an Absolut World."

It was exactly 11 days after my mom's death that I recalled the ad, found it still in my purse and posted it to my blog with a small note on "perfect worlds" and "absolute" worlds.

The Absolut experience has left me with a sweet and sour taste in my mouth. On the one hand I was happily surprised at the power of blogging and how an apparently inoffensive ad I cut out from a Mexican magazine incensed such passions. On the other, I realized how intolerance, stupidity and ignorance can quickly give raise to hatred and racism, a dangerous combination in these days and times ...
Stupidity and Ignorance ... Hatred and Racism

I guess, for whichever part of the world the Bush Grindhouse doesn't alienate, the lunatic believers, the dwarfs, finks, phonies and frauds, will swoop in and mop up

Siempre Absolut!

Katie Couric Deathwatch Update

The ticks are getting louder and louder ...

There was a meeting ...

Things were discussed ... Denials of things discussed ...

A wide-ranging discussion in February about Katie Couric’s future as the anchor of the “CBS Evening News” threatened on Thursday to turn her into a virtual lame duck in the job.

“She’s not a definite lame duck,” a senior executive who has been close to the situation said. “Nothing is decided.”

But the audience levels have been, by any measure, disappointing. For the season the CBS newscast, already a distant third, has lost about 11 percent of its viewers.

The executives involved in the discussions about Ms. Couric’s future emphasized that she would not be leaving the job in the short term. But one of her close associates said, “If you ask me, will she fulfill her contract with CBS, that I doubt.”

There's finger pointing;
So who killed her? Because don't think for one second that the person who leaked the news of the meeting didn't know that that was exactly what he or she was doing.

Odds are, it was one of the two CBS execs, probably Sean (McManus). CBS doesn't want to acknowledge that one of the main problems with the CBS Evening News is that "evening news" shows are obsolete, so it has to blame Katie (who, it is true, was more beloved in her morning slot). CBS also, however, doesn't want to be seen as cutting and running on the nation's first solo woman anchor, especially after it paid so much to get her there.

So how best for CBS to ditch Katie? Make it look like they had no choice. Or, rather, make it look like leaving the anchor slot might have been Katie's choice. ("We tried to talk her out of it, but she decided that [INSERT NEW JOB HERE] was a better fit"). Odds are this is what happened: CBS just killed Katie.

With the network evening news being touted as going the way of the rotary telephone, does a bigger stigma get itself attached to Katie?

Does Katie Couric end up with being the one that kills the legendary, vaunted CBS Evening News?

Holy rickety rabbit ears, Batman! ... Will we ever get a clear picture on this?

Stay tuned ...

Retro Garlic ... Food Fight!

There was a food fight, of sorts, recently, out in the Land of Silicon.

Seems the young upstarts at Facebook wanted some better grub and one place they knew they could get some, was from the older, more established upstarts, Google.

We'll let John Murrell, from GMSV take it;

Facebook poaches Google chef: There's always a danger when a key employee leaves for a new company that he or she will stir things up by taking a few co-workers along, but some defections can be particularly grating. Looking to coddle its growing workforce a bit more, Facebook started shopping for its own executive chef in January. And when Sheryl Sandberg came over from Google to become COO last month, she said she knew just the guy at her old place. Everything panned out and now, as Carolyn Jung (until recently, the Merc's food editor) reports at Food Gal, Josef Desimone has been whisked away to become the new Facecook. Valleywag tells us that Sandberg and Desimone blended well at the Googleplex, quoting one ex-employee saying, "Josef was Sheryl's favorite chef at Google. Every time she moved buildings, so did he." Apparently, though, not everyone is steamed at the departure. A health-conscious Googler tells Valleywag, "Everyone hated his cafes. He had the worst heavy, everything-fried menus." We await the reviews from the new venue. Now the question is whether Google will retaliate -- maybe Sergey Brin will hire away Mark Zuckerberg's personal ski waxer or something.
My, My, My ...

(Then, Facebook went out and knocked Google's teeth out, for mumbling about it.)

There's something about being a chef at Google ...

The Retro Part;

Google Fires Executive Chef; Caught Searching Recipes On Yahoo, MSN

Oh well, that's the way the cookie (digital or edible) crumbles, I guess ...

Bonus Google Moments

Garlic Exclusive! Google Launches Search for Famed Woman Aviator

Stymied By Publishers, Google To Digitize Bazooka Joe Comics

Google Launches Lobbyist; As Usual, In Beta-Mode and By-Invite Only

This Date ... On The Garlic

Garlic History - On This Day

11 April 2006... On The Garlic

“They’re coming here for the American experience”; Rumsfeld Weighs In On Immigration Battle; Won’t Tie It To War With Iran; Suggests Army Recruiting Woes Could Be Solved With Mandatory Service By Illegal Aliens

Top Ten Cloves: Things The Washington Nationals Will Have To Worry About With Dick Cheney Throwing Out First Ball

11 April 2005... On The Garlic

OJ To Outsource Hunt For Killers; Better Productivity, Cost Efficiency Cited

PB&J Sandwiches Temporarily Banned; Smucker Gets Injunction While Appealing Loss

Top Ten Cloves: What Tiger Woods Was Thinking During The Masters

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Top Ten Cloves: Things That Happened To Olympic Torch In San Francisco

News Item: Olympic Torch Protests Overwhelm San Francisco

10. Stopped off at the Buena Vista Café for a couple of Irish Coffee's

9. Due to the size of the crowds, it got put to work, cooking crabs, down on Pier 39

8. It refused to stay lit, unless it got to ride the Cable Cars

7. Joe Montana wanted to see how far he could throw it

6. The decoy torches they used were simply sculpted loaves of sourdough bread

5. All the runners took turns, riding it, sliding down Lombard Street

4. San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom delayed program, posing with it, with both his wife and his mistress

3. Groups of tourists mistook it for Coit Tower and tied up runners for hours, taking pictures

2. Running by Castro Street, it got fitted for chaps

1. Looking to save her job, Katie Couric muscled in, trying to interview the torch

Bonus Olympics Riffs

Top Ten Cloves: Ways U.S. Winter Olympic Team Can Win More Gold Medals

Top Ten Cloves: Problems With Being A Woman Figure Skater In The Winter Olympics

Top Ten Cloves: Other Things Viewing The London 2012 Olympic Logo Can Cause

Start Your Katie Deathwatches!

Boy, a whole bunch of celebrity blogs and websites must be busy little bees today.

There's so much to do.

Whole new slates of graphics ... The Death Clocks and Counters have to be put together ... Compiling all the old links of every little piece of gossip, sleaze, faux pas and just plain goofy news they can find.

All must be ready to go at a moments notice, at the drop-of-a-hat, PDQ, etc ...

All must be ready to be fired up, the moment that ear-shattering "THUD" hits her on the derrière, as she is ushered out of the building.

What's all the hub-bub?

From the WSJ - CBS News, Katie Couric Are Likely to Part Ways

After two years of record-low ratings, both CBS News executives and people close to Katie Couric say that the "CBS Evening News" anchor is likely to leave the network well before her contract expires in 2011 -- possibly soon after the presidential inauguration early next year.

Her departure would cap a difficult episode for CBS, which brought Ms. Couric to the network with considerable fanfare in a bid to catapult "Evening News" back into first place. Excluding several weeks of her tenure, Ms. Couric never bested the ratings of interim anchor Bob Schieffer, who was named to host the broadcast temporarily after "Evening News" anchor Dan Rather left the newscast in the wake of a discredited report on George W. Bush's National Guard service.

One possible new job for Ms. Couric: succeeding Larry King at CNN. Mr. King, who is 74 years old, has a contract with the network into 2009. CNN President Jon Klein, a CBS veteran with close ties to some at the network, has expressed admiration for Ms. Couric's work, and the two are friends. They had lunch in late January, and the anchor attended Mr. Klein's birthday party in March. Time Warner Inc.'s CNN said, "Larry King is a great talent who consistently delivers the highest profile guests, and we have no plans to make a change." Through a publicist, Mr. King declined to comment.
Katie in suspenders, barking "Hello Ohio! ... What's on your mind!"?

Oh my!

New York Magazine has a better idea;
But we think that's a waste of everything that Couric is good at: spontaneity, humor, and legginess. What about a reality show? We can see it now — America's Next Top Evening News Anchor. And just like on Tyra's version, nobody would ever lay eyes on the winner again!
But would that be enough?

From Howard Kurtz, in the WaPo;
Couric admitted last week that the constricted nature of the 22-minute format had left little room for the humor and freewheeling approach that once defined her style. "It's really hard to show that side of my personality on the evening news, and that's a frustration for me," she said.

This has me wondering if Ms. Perky ever watched an evening news show, be it CBS's or any other - before she took the job?

"It's really hard to that side of my personality"? ... "Frustrated"?

What the hell did she expect?

Segments with Mr. Gadget? ... Cooking casseroles with Martha Stewart?

It's a fucking hard news program, you idiot!

A real piece of twisted irony looms.

What if CBS does dump the perky newswoman, only to replace her with the former CBS alum, Meredeth Viera?

Oh, how wicked that would be ...

Bonus Perky Riffs

James Joyner/OTB: Katie Couric - CBS News Divorce Imminent

Gawker: The Rise And Fall Of Katie Couric

Russell Mokhiber and Robert Weissman/CommonDreams: Katie Couric Versus Amy Goodman

Top Ten Cloves: Things To Look Forward To When Katie Couric Takes Over As CBS News Anchor

Top Ten Cloves: Ways Katie Couric Could Have Made The Edwards Interview Better

Katie ... Now, Just Click Your Heels Together Three Times ...

Good Post Alert - Larisa Alexandrovna's "Mississippi Justice: Bush US Attorney targeted my wife, supporters and friends"

Here's yet another glimpse of the Bush Grindhouse justice system

Larisa Alexandrovna, over on The Raw Story, has a great piece today, of some serious shenanigans that played out down in Mississippi

Mississippi Justice: Bush US Attorney targeted my wife, supporters and friends

Mississippi Supreme Court Justice Oliver Diaz Jr. was indicted in 2003 on charges relating to his receipt of a loan guarantee from trial lawyer Paul Minor - a personal friend and the largest Democratic donor in Mississippi - to help defray campaign debts. A Bush-appointed US Attorney, Dunnica Lampton, brought charges of bribery against Diaz, Minor and two other Mississippi judges. Diaz was acquitted of all those charges... Within days of his acquittal, Diaz was indicted for a second time. He was again acquitted.

Normally, a criminal investigation begins after a crime is committed," Diaz told me. "Investigators are sent out to gather evidence and a list of suspects is drawn up. Sometimes an investigation is begun after a complaint is made about suspicious activity. In our case neither of these things occurred."

"In other words," he continued. "An individual was singled out for examination from the federal government and prosecutors then attempted to make his conduct fit into some criminal statute. This is not how our system of justice is supposed to operate."

More of Karl Rove's vision of an America under Republican Majority

Check it out, it's a great interview.

Bonus Links

Good Posts Alert - Larisa Alexandrovna's "The Permanent Republican Majority"

Larisa Alexandrovna: Alabama Democrats are Under Attack

This Is Huge! ... Siegalman Released On Appeal!

This Date ... On The Garlic

Garlic History - On This Day

10 April 2007... On The Garlic

Retro Garlic ... Must Be His Friends and Family Circle ...

10 April 2006... On The Garlic

White House Iran War Rhetoric Has CIA Nervous, Taking Precautions; Gallows Humor Sprouts “Outted Pool” At Langley; Agents Suggested To Warn Spouses Of Writing Critical Op-Eds

Top Ten Cloves: Ways The White House Celebrated Iraqi Freedom Day

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Ambassador Crocker Meets Eddie Izzard

Or, "The Lord almighty came down and sat in the middle of the table there and said ‘Mr. Ambassador you can eliminate every Al Qaeda source in Afghanistan and Pakistan, or every Al Qaeda personnel in Iraq,’ which would you pick?"

Sometime ago (nearly two-years) the Friedman Unit, after ol' Lead-Luvin' Tom, was established, designating the term to mark six-months as a unit of time for things to turn around in Iraq.

So, with the Golden Boy, General Petraeus yesterday, once again, calling for extra time, now 45-days (to evaluate things after they stop the troop pulldown), the question to be asked is what do you call it, in relation to the Friedman Unit.

The Petraeus Pint?

The Petraeus Horseshoe (both for his sunny optimism, and with a nod to Colt 45 Malt Liquor)?

The Bush Grindhouse's marketing seminar didn't go so well

In fact, if it were a sporting event, say, a basketball game, the various Senators can retire to the bench, and bring in the second team scrubs to mop up.

We have heard, for years, the bedrock principle for our being in Iraq (keep in mind, this has shifted many times), was that Iraq was the "Central Front on the War on Terror".

It was Al Qaeda, Al Qaeda, Al Qaeda, all the time.

If we moved one inch away from Iraq, teams of Al Qaeda would swoop in to that inch, and build a metropolis of terror in it.

Hell, even announcing that we would move that one inch out of Iraq, brought sordid tales of Al Qaeda, impatiently waiting at the border, moving van engines running.

Well, that got blown out of the water yesterday, and not by some "defeatocrat" or anybody "Feeling morally, intellectually confused?"

No, it came from the U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, Ryan Crocker.

From Think Progress;
SEN. BIDEN: Mr. Ambassador, is Al Qaeda a greater threat to US interests in Iraq, or in the Afghan-Pakistan border region?

AMB. CROCKER: Mr. Chairman, Al Qaeda is a strategic threat to the United States wherever it is, in my view–

SEN. BIDEN: Where is most of it? If you could take it out? You had a choice: Lord almighty came down and sat in the middle of the table there and said ‘Mr. Ambassador you can eliminate every Al Qaeda source in Afghanistan and Pakistan, or every Al Qaeda personnel in Iraq,’ which would you pick?

AMB. CROCKER: Well given the progress that has been made again Al Qaeda in Iraq, the significant decrease in its capabilities, the fact that it is solidly on the defensive, and not in a position of–

SEN. BIDEN: Which would you pick, Mr. Ambassador?

AMB. CROCKER: I would therefore pick Al Qaeda in the Pakistan-Afghanistan border area.

SEN BIDEN: That would be a smart choice.
Think Progress also has the video of it, so check it out.

And that brings us to our Eddie Izzard moment.

Writing in Salon today is Mark Benjamin, with "Sizing up Petraeus on Iraq; The top U.S. general gave Congress an upbeat assessment of the war Tuesday. Here's the reality behind the rhetoric".

And there's this gem;
Claim: The Iraqis have redesigned their flag -- which is a big deal because it suggests that Iraq is pulling together as a nation and that things will turn out well.

Crocker: "In January, a vote by the Council of Representatives to change the design of the Iraqi flag means the flag now flies in all parts of the country for the first time in years."
We now turn it over to Mr. Izzard.

Eddie Izzard - Do you have a flag?

Time to cue up Que Sera Sera...

Bonus Through The Looking Glass Links

Ezra Klein: A Superman Approach to Foreign Policy; Our nation's favorite comic book hero might have had the right idea: Use power sparingly and judiciously

Barry Crimmins: Prevarication Nation

Robert Scheer: Everything His President Wants to Hear

Nicole Belle/C&L: The Situation Room: Michael Ware On Who Wields Power In Iraq

"What If Spartacus Had To Account For 190,000 AK-47 assault rifles and pistols ..."

Tom Engelhardt: Launching Brand Petraeus

Honeysuckle Rose ... White House claims to give up its ‘rose-colored glasses’

When you're passin' by,
Flowers droop and sigh
I know the reason why
You're much sweeter
Goodness knows
Honeysuckle rose

Well, if The Commander Guy, or Cheney, walks by and "flowers droop and sigh", I doubt it would be due to the thinking that they are "much sweeter".

More then likely, they'd be scared out of their wits, that they would be invaded and occupied, perhaps a mini-Shock-and-Awe would rain down on the flower bed.

I don't know if this was meant to lay down cover, for the testimony of the Dynamic Duo (Petraeus and Ryan) this week, but on Monday, Bush Grindhouse spokesperson Tony Fratto stepped out of the Unreality Bubble, to, essentially, assert there is no Unreality Bubble.

White House claims to give up its ‘rose-colored glasses’
Q: Also, how does this latest violence in Iraq and the latest uncertainty about what’s going on color the Petraeus-Crocker testimony this time around? It obviously has changed the equation. I mean, weeks ago it looked like the surge was — you know, had this pretty rosy cast, and now with all this renewed violence, I think it has changed the dynamics. So how has this changed the equation?

FRATTO: Well, I think we’ve thrown out all of the rose-colored glasses in how we look at Iraq, and try to look at it through clear lenses as to what is actually going on in the country.

And then again, a few minutes later, after a question about Iraqis protesting the American troop presence in Iraq:

Q: Do you think it takes any of the steam, though, out of what Petraeus and Crocker will be saying when you see those images juxtaposed?

FRATTO: No, I don’t think so. I mean, it’s — look, every — like I said, we threw out the rose-colored glasses. I think we have a very clear-eyed view of what’s happening in Baghdad.
Steve Benen also offers a long list of the Bush Grindhouse wearing those rose-colored glasses, and Think Progress has a video on it.

With The Commander Guy's legacy hanging on what happens with the Iraq Quagmire, I doubt very much they've thrown away the rose-colored glasses.

More likely, they've just upgraded to a pair with photochromic lenses.

Does It Come With A Crown, and Sash?

At this point in time, or, at least this afternoon, I don't have the energy to delve into the abyss that is our 43rd President.

It is a dark, foul hole, the stench strong enough to singe eyebrows.

And, sadly, very sadly (Thank You U.S. Congress, Thank You Nancy Pelosi, for pulling that table away), he still has roughly eight-more months to dig a deeper hole, to create a more noxious odor.

We speak of the recent distinction, of The Commander Guy being voted "The Worst President - Ever" by a group of historians

HNN Poll: 61% of Historians Rate the Bush Presidency Worst

A Pew Research Center poll released last week found that the share of the American public that approves of President George W. Bush has dropped to a new low of 28 percent.

An unscientific poll of professional historians completed the same week produced results far worse for a president clinging to the hope that history will someday take a kinder view of his presidency than does contemporary public opinion.
And here's one (of many) choice quotes from the historians in the survey;
“No individual president can compare to the second Bush,” wrote one. “Glib, contemptuous, ignorant, incurious, a dupe of anyone who humors his deluded belief in his heroic self, he has bankrupted the country with his disastrous war and his tax breaks for the rich, trampled on the Bill of Rights, appointed foxes in every henhouse, compounded the terrorist threat, turned a blind eye to torture and corruption and a looming ecological disaster, and squandered the rest of the world’s goodwill. In short, no other president’s faults have had so deleterious an effect on not only the country but the world at large.”

Doubt they will use that, or reference this survey, in the next mailer for contributions to his library.

Bonus Links

Scott Harper: Worst. President. Ever

Digby: Glib, Contemptuous, Ignorant, Incurious

Matthew Yglesias: Worst President Ever

An Absolution Long Overdue

The Boston Red Sox organization, finally, showed some a moment of class.

For more then 20-years, they've let a man, one man, take the heat, be mocked, scourged, and even, I believe, threatened, without lifting a finger.

The Boston Media also shares in that shame.

We speak of Bill Buckner, infamous for his error in Game Six of the 1986 World Series, a game the New York Mets went on to win, and then winning Game Seven, to dash, once again, the hopes of Red Sox Nation (considerably smaller than it is now), last raised, at that time, in 1975.

Yesterday, for the home opener at Fenway, the ring ceremony, the legends walk, a surprise was unleashed.

Bill Buckner emerged from behind the giant flag draping the Green Monster and the crowd stood and cheered.

A standing ovation, long and loud, as Buckner had the honor of throwing the ceremonial first pitch (to former teammate, Dwight "Dewey" Evans).

Buckner's appearance marks end of an error

Between the Seams | Bill Buckner feted in Fenway return

Long, long overdue.

Sure, Buckner made an error, but the bigger goat of that World Series was, if not Manager John McNamara, then Red Sox pitcher Calvin Schiraldi.

He was the hot shot in the bullpen that year, then choked in the Series.

Schiraldi blew leads in both Game Six and Game Seven.

This Date ... On The Garlic

Garlic History - On This Day

9 April 2007... On The Garlic

Top Ten Cloves: Things Don Imus Will Do During His Suspension

9 April, 2006... On The Garlic

Weekend Special - Sautéed Cloves

Garlic Poll Results - When President Bush Decides To Declassify Intelligence In Order To Leak It, He First ...

Editor's Note ... Getting Back On Track Today ...

Good Afternoon Garlic Fans

We hope you're well today ...

Lo Siento for the lack of posting yesterday ... Just felt totally beat-up, with a double-dose of the two A's - Allergies and Aunt ... Energy levels were extremely low and rather then trying to wing it, I just settled for not sitting at the computer and let the world run by me for the day ...

So, getting back on track (the two A's are still present, but less-so today) and planning on a bevy of posts to be put up today and tomorrow.

Many Thanks, once again, for coming by and visiting The Garlic.

Monday, April 07, 2008

The Gift That Refuses To Stop Itself From Giving

It's a Stumblin' Bumblin John McCainPalooza!

And this is happening when he doesn't have any heat on him!

If Preston Sturges were alive, and working, today, he'd have to make a movie titled "Christmas In April".

Stumblin' Bumblin' John McCain - The Gift That Refuses To Stop Itself From Giving!

Gift #1

First, it seems that SB John took, at least for today, The Garlic's advise, and spoke before a military audience, albiet, a Veterans of Foreign Wars crowd, in Kansas City, Missouri, spinning on the fabulous success, that apparently only he, Lindsey Graham and Joe Lieberman, as well as the Bush Grindhouse, can see.

From Think Progress;

A telling moment in his remarks came when he was arguing why President Bush’s surge “dramatically turned around the situation in Iraq.” Just as he reached this point in his speech, MSNBC cut away to report on escalating violence in Iraq:

McCAIN: Faced with the prospect of defeat, we had two fundamental choices. We could retreat from Iraq and accept the horrible consequences of our defeat. Or we could change strategies and try to turn things around. It was, I believe, a critical moment in our nation’s history, and a time of testing for our nation’s political leadership.

In the year that has passed, our nation showed its strength –

MSNBC: And speaking of Iraq, we do have breaking news out of Iraq, where at least four mortars have been fired into the heavily-fortified Green Zone today. It’s unclear at this time if there are casualties or any major damage. Now the news comes just a day after five U.S. soldiers were killed in Iraq. Two, again, inside that Green Zone.

There's video of it, so go over to Think Progress and check that out.

Crooks and Liars also has it, with the added bonus of this is a redux for SB John.

And Keith Olbermann, this evening, did a killer segment (#3 - McCainus Interruptus), playing Stumblin' Bumblin' John's speech, stopping in, and rebutting it with facts, and reality ... It was pretty devastating! (and, as of the time writing this, MSNBC hasn't posted the video, so you can go over to Countdown to see if it's there)

How ironic would it be, that every time Stumblin' Bumblin' John McCain goes out to give one of his stump speeches, spinning the glory of war, he gets busted with live-action news, of, sadly, another disastrous event in Iraq?

Ohhh, but that was only his morning offering ...

Gift #2

To give you a tease, Wonkette titled their post "John McCain Called Wife Awful Word That Rhymes With 'Hunt' and 'Punt'!", while Emptywheel, over on Firedoglake added a little more - "A Trollop and a C$#T"

Yes, Stumblin' Bumblin John McCain has his infamous temper now documented, and coming out in a new book, 'The Real McCain' by Cliff Schecter.

The Raw Story broke with this today;

Book: McCain temper boiled over in '92 tirade, called wife a 'cunt'

John McCain's temper is well documented. He's called opponents and colleagues "shitheads," "assholes" and in at least one case "a fucking jerk."

But a new book on the presumptive Republican nominee will air perhaps the most shocking angry exchange to date.
Three reporters from Arizona, on the condition of anonymity, also let me in on another incident involving McCain's intemperateness. In his 1992 Senate bid, McCain was joined on the campaign trail by his wife, Cindy, as well as campaign aide Doug Cole and consultant Wes Gullett. At one point, Cindy playfully twirled McCain's hair and said, "You're getting a little thin up there." McCain's face reddened, and he responded, "At least I don't plaster on the makeup like a trollop, you cunt." McCain's excuse was that it had been a long day. If elected president of the United States, McCain would have many long days.

Oh my!

Forget about the Oval Office, sit this man down at the Bada Bing!

How ever is the loving, fawning MSM press going to deal with this one?

Boy, that girl, down on McCain's Biography Tour, dodged a bullet, no?

And, it's only April ... Can't wait for the gifts still being wrapped - tightly ...

The Stumblin' Bumblin John McCainPalooza!

Libby/The Newshoggers: Ed Shultz won't retract remarks

The Hill - McCain: U.S. strategy in Iraq ‘will succeed'

Blue Texan/Firedoglake - McCain: I Fought Hard Against Bush’s Failures In Iraq By Getting Him Re-elected

Pam/Pam's House Blend: McCain's loving comment to wife Cindy: 'you c*nt'

Nicole Bell/C&L: Temper, Temper

Jesus General: Sen. McCain responds to "The Real McCain"

Pale Rider/Red State-Blue Girl: Yeah, We've Heard of the "C" Word...

The Bob Dole For The New Millennium