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Saturday, March 06, 2004
 
NYT yanks Ted Rall 'toons.
The NYT finally got fed up with the waves of right wing hate mail, I guess. Ted has a way of getting straight to the point with his cartoons. I'll run them here, if I have to (sorry Ted, Roachblog won't pay as well as the Times. How about if I buy you some beer?).

In case Ted doesn't want some brewskis, you can still catch his work here.
 
Friday, March 05, 2004
 
Hey, it's Debunk the GOP liE-Mail Time!
I like this. First, we look at an RNC sponsored distortion that's been making the rounds of people's in-boxes, then we check the facts. Ready?

liE-Mail number one. You may have received something containing the following text concerning John Kerry:
He voted to kill the Bradley Fighting Vehicle
He voted to kill the M-1 Abrams Tank
He voted to kill every Aircraft carrier laid down from 1988
He voted to kill the Aegis anti aircraft system
He voted to Kill the F-15 strike eagle
He voted to Kill the Block 60 F-16
He voted to Kill the P-3 Orion upgrade
He voted to Kill the B-1
He voted to Kill the B-2
He voted to Kill the Patriot anti Missile system
He voted to Kill the FA-18
He voted to Kill the B-2
He voted to Kill the F117
This is from the RNC Research Briefing of 22 February. Of course, it's pure crap.

Slate has a great article that analyses this claim. I recommend reading the whole thing as there are some amusing bits about certain prominent Republicans who wanted to cut a few weapons systems. Here is a pertinent paragraph, though:
"...In other words, Kerry was one of 16 senators (including five Republicans) to vote against a defense appropriations bill 14 years ago. He was also one of an unspecified number of senators to vote against a conference report on a defense bill nine years ago. The RNC takes these facts and extrapolates from them that he voted against a dozen weapons systems that were in those bills. The Republicans could have claimed, with equal logic, that Kerry voted to abolish the entire U.S. armed forces, but that might have raised suspicions. Claiming that he opposed a list of specific weapons systems has an air of plausibility. On close examination, though, it reeks of rank dishonesty...."
Of course, some of our less refined right wing brethren have added comments and embellishments, such as:
"... In short, he voted to kill every military appropriation for the development and deployment of every weapons systems since 1988 to include the battle armor for our troops. With Kerry as president our Army will be made up of naked men running around with sticks and clubs..."
Isn't this fun?


 
Thursday, March 04, 2004
 
Anyone beginning to have funny feelings about Haiti?
It is becoming more apparent with each day that passes that the US had more than a little to do with Aristide's departure:
"...The United States on Thursday rejected pressure for an investigation into whether it pushed former Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide to resign and said it would not prop up "failed" elected leaders.

After days of criticism that Aristide was ousted in a U.S.-assisted coup, the Bush administration's new defense of his "rescue" stoked fears its Haiti policy set a precedent for other leftists in Latin America, such as Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez..."
Aristide has always been looked on as a "Socialist" by this administration, and was an "easy out".

Chavez is going to be tougher. Plus, if we dick Venezuela up, expect $3.00 gasoline. Soon.
 
 
I guess we are having great "success" in Afghanistan, too.
The administration no doubt believes that this massive increase in heroin production is an indicator of a healthy free market economy:
Britain faces a flood of cheap heroin following two years of bumper opium poppy harvests in Afghanistan, the United Nations warned last night...The UN-backed International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) warned that western Europe was about to pay the price of a surge in Afghanistan's heroin production since the Taliban was removed from power..."
Of course, Afghanistan has no oil, so sending Halliburton or Bechtel in to rebuild the country with no-bid, cost-plus contracts wouldn't be fiscally prudent. Speaking of great success, I see that things are going so well in Iraq that the administration doesn't feel that any more money is required!

In its' budget proposal for FY 2005 the Bush administration has left out any dollar request for the costs of the Iraqi occupation and reconstruction. The deficit is still huge, but they have made it clear to everyone that it has nothing to do with Iraq; it has to do with all their other "successful" policies! Good job, guys!

Of course, after the November elections, they might, just might, make a special funding request. But that's impossible to predict at this time.

By the way, the Senate Republican buget committee is not so optimistic. They have submitted a budget that earmarks $30 billion more for Iraq.
It... shows the effects of spending $30 billion to maintain U.S. forces in Iraq. Bush's budget omitted that expenditure, even as administration officials conceded they would ask for up to $50 billion after this November's presidential and congressional elections.
That's it. Total. No more money after that will be needed--Ever.

Is it just me, or are budgets supposed to be an honest estimate of future spending needs? Does everyone in this Administration live on planet Cheney?
 
Wednesday, March 03, 2004
 
So, what's new about that?
The president of the International Association of Fire Fighters has issued a statement criticizing the new Bush campaign ads. Seems he feels that, once again, * says one thing and then does the opposite:
"I'm disappointed but not surprised that the President would try to trade on the heroism of those fire fighters in the September 11 attacks. The use of 9/11 images are hypocrisy at its worst. Here's a President that initially opposed the creation of the Department of Homeland Security and now uses its first anniversary as cause to promote his re-election. Here is a President that proposed two budgets with no funding for FIRE Act grants and still plays on the image of America's bravest. His advertisements are disgraceful.

"Bush is calling on the biggest disaster in our country's history, and indeed in the history of the fire service, to win sympathy for his campaign. Since the attacks, Bush has been using images of himself putting his arm around a retired FDNY fire fighter on the pile of rubble at ground zero. But for two and a half years he has basically shortchanged fire fighters and the safety of our homeland by not providing fire fighters the resources needed to do the job that America deserves...."
This is the same trick this administration plays over and over and over again. The post just below this one is another good example of it. They say one thing, then do the opposite; or something happens and they describe the event as if the opposite thing had occurred.

They've gotten away with this for 4 years now. I wonder if the American electorate has figured it out yet?

 
 
Cheney again proves that he is not from Earth.
Our VP made the rounds of the cable news shows yesterday, asserting the Administration's position that the murder of hundreds of Shiite civilians in suicide bombings is a sign of our success in Iraq!
"...Bush administration officials counter that yesterday's attacks are a byproduct of U.S. progress. "What it is more than anything else is major desperation on their part, as we get closer and closer to standing up a new government in Iraq," Cheney told MSNBC yesterday..."
Man, I'll bet those Shiites are asking themselves, "How can we get some more of this success? We were never this successful before our American friends showed up to help us succeed. Maybe we can get them to lay some of this good success on our Sunni and Kurd neighbors down the road. That would be way cool."

I wonder what failure looks like on planet Cheney? Is it just me, or do hundreds of civilian deaths seem like we might have a little problem?
 
Shouting into the closet to inform and entertain the 10 people who actually read this thing. In our new format as an online magazine, we take pride in our reporting and opinions. Please leave reader feedback on our online magazine message board so that we can better serve you.

“There’s a lot of money to pay for this that doesn’t have to be U.S. taxpayer money, and it starts with the assets of the Iraqi people…and on a rough recollection, the oil revenues of that country could bring between $50 and $100 billion over the course of the next two or three years…We’re dealing with a country that can really finance its own reconstruction, and relatively soon.” -Paul Wolfowitz

Cost of the War in Iraq
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