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While neither Franke nor Hayes returned calls seeking confirmation of their roles in the Swift Boat Veterans organization, it seems obvious that Waterman wouldn't have set up the group's Web site using Gannon's corporate address without approval from his employers.And don't forget that the mouthpiece for Swift Boat Vets for Truth, John O'Neill, was a toady of Nixon dirty-trick-meister Chuck Colson. (Oh, and O'Neill's law firm does beaucoup business with Halliburton and other "connected" energy firms.)
Franke is well known in Missouri as a longtime Republican Party activist and financier. In 1976, he managed John Danforth's victorious Senate campaign; two years later, he ran unsuccessfully for Congress. He also failed in an attempt to resuscitate the defunct St. Louis Globe-Democrat (which was, despite its name, a staunchly Republican newspaper) in 1986. Before the Globe-Democrat finally went under in 1987, Franke had obtained a commitment from the state industrial development authority -- all of whose members were appointed by then Gov. John Ashcroft -- to raise $9 million in tax-exempt revenue bonds to keep the paper afloat.
Last June, Franke gave the maximum $2,000 to the Bush-Cheney campaign, and he has since donated an additional $2,000 to House Majority Leader Tom DeLay's political action committee, Americans for a Republican Majority, and $2,000 more to Keep Our Majority, the PAC operated by House Speaker Dennis Hastert
"It is time to ask this question: Do we have any chance of succeeding at regime change in Iraq without regime change here at home?He's not quite ready to say that Iraq was the terrible mistake that it is, but he acknowledges that the Bush administration has put politics above all else when it comes to the War on Terra®. He also admits that:
"Hey, Friedman, why are you bringing politics into this all of a sudden? You're the guy who always said that producing a decent outcome in Iraq was of such overriding importance to the country that it had to be kept above politics."
Yes, that's true. I still believe that. My mistake was thinking that the Bush team believed it, too..."
"...(the)White House always knew this was a war of choice - its choice - so it made sure that average Americans never had to pay any price or bear any burden..."I can't believe this is Friedman writing. It's his best column in a long time.
Sydney Bild, 81, a retired doctor in Chicago, compared the discount cards with the prices he paid ordering his drugs by mail from Canada. Dr. Bild pays $4,000 to $5,000 a year for five medications. When he checked the government Web site, he said the best plans were about 50 percent to 60 percent higher than what he was paying.And seniors have to pick one card out of 73 choices! And the Gov't expects them to look up the competing plans on the internet. Hahahaha [sarcasm]yeah... that's good planning[/sarcasm]
But Dr. Bild said his main objection to the new plans was that companies could change prices on drugs, or change the drugs covered. Medicare requires plans to cover only one drug in each of 209 common categories. Consumers can change cards only once a year. Committing to a card is "like love - it's a sometime thing," Dr. Bild said. "What if I chose one? They could drop my drugs two weeks later."
Beheaded Man's Firm Was On Right-Wing 'Enemies' ListIf this list caused Nick Berg to be detained by Iraqi police and/or the US military...
The family firm of beheaded American Nick Berg, was named by a conservative website in a list of 'enemies' of the Iraq occupation. That could explain his arrest by Iraqi police --a detention which fatally delayed his planned return from Iraq and may have led directly to his death.
On 7th March, 2004, just three weeks before the first anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, an 'enemies' list of anti-war groups and individuals was posted on the Free Republic forum.
It began: "Here you are, Freepers. Here is the enemy."
The list had been copied from publicly available endorsements of a call to action for an imminent anniversary antiwar protest on 20th March, 2004. The protest was being organized under the banner of the A.N.S.W.E.R Coalition (Act Now to Stop War & End Racism).
Among those listed as having endorsed the call to action was this entry: "Michael S. Berg, Teacher, Prometheus Methods Tower Service, Inc."
Within minutes of getting their hands on the antiwar names, one was boasting of having contacted the military about active service personnel who were on the list:"I forwarded the list to the ISC (the command you listed), the district officer... the district legal office and the investigative services office."
The response:"The poor moron is not going to know what hit him. Is this being mean-spirited? NO! Someone against our military does not belong in the military!"Yet, within two weeks of the list being posted, Nick Berg --back in Iraq on his final fatal trip-- was reportedly detained in Mosul at an Iraqi police checkpoint. The official explanation is that authorities thought his identification might have been forged and were checking his authenticity.
But a more likely reason is that by then authorities in Iraq had discovered that a 'Berg' of Prometheus Methods Tower Service was in the country, and issued a detention instruction to Iraqi police because they misidentified Nick Berg as an antiwar activist entering Iraq to work for the 'enemy'.
That could explain why he was held incommunicado for 13 days, without recourse to a lawyer; why US officialdom was singularly unheeding of his mother's pleas; why the FBI visited his family to question them; why it took a US court order secured by the family to pressure his release.
2004 could be a decisive victory for Kerry. The reason to think so is historical. Elections that feature a sitting president tend to be referendums on the incumbent--and in recent elections, the incumbent has either won or lost by large electoral margins. If you look at key indicators beyond the neck-and-neck support for the two candidates in the polls--such as high turnout in the early Democratic primaries and the likelihood of a high turnout in November--it seems improbable that Bush will win big. More likely, it's going to be Kerry in a rout.
"I'm probably not the only one up at this table that is more outraged by the outrage than we are by the treatment.... I am also outraged that we have so many humanitarian do-gooders right now crawling all over these prisons looking for human rights violations, while our troops, our heroes are fighting and dying,"Please allow me to say "Fuck You!"
Imagine a different Nov. 4, 1979, in Tehran. Shortly after Iranian terrorists storm the American Embassy and take some 90 American hostages, President Carter announces that Islamic fundamentalism is not a legitimate response to the excess of the shah but a new and dangerous fascism that threatens all that liberal society holds dear. And then he issues an ultimatum to Tehran's leaders: Release the captives or face a devastating military response.He's right, things would have been different. We would have started WWIII with the country that shared Iran's northern border .... the USSR. Instead Hansen's previous hero, Ronnie Raygun, gave hundreds of millions of dollars in weapons and aid to Saddam Hussein for the Iran/Iraq war, which killed 3 million+ and cemented Hussein's leadership of the largest and most powerful Arab military. [sarcasm] Yeah... that worked. [/sarcasm]
When that demand is not met, instead of freezing Iran's assets, stopping the importation of its oil, or seeking support at the U.N., Mr. Carter orders an immediate blockade of the country, followed by promises to bomb, first, all of its major military assets, and then its main government buildings and residences of its ruling mullocracy. The Ayatollah Khomeini might well have called his bluff; we may well have tragically lost the hostages (151 fewer American lives than the Iranian-backed Hezbollah would take four years later in a single day in Lebanon). And there might well have been the sort of chaos in Tehran that we now witness in Baghdad. But we would have seen it all in 1979--and not in 2001, after almost a quarter-century of continuous Middle East terrorism, culminating in the mass murder of 3,000 Americans and the leveling of the World Trade Center.
Narcissistic Personality DisorderThis one commenter, by referencing his/her area of expertise, has reframed the entire discussion of the Abu Ghraib scandal, as well as the entire Bush Presidency for me.
From Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders of the American Psychiatric Association, 4th edition, 1994, commonly referred to as DSM-IV.
"An all-pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or in behaviour), need for admiration and a marked lack of empathy which starts at early adulthood and is present in a variety of contexts."
At least 5 of the following should be present to qualify a person as suffering from NPD:
(1) Possesses a grandiose sense of self importance (for example: exaggerates his achievements and his talents, expects his superiority to be recognised without having the commensurate skills or achievements).
(2) Pre-occupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance and beauty or of ideal love.
(3) Believes that he is unique and special and that only high status and special people (or institutions) could understand him (or that it is only with such people and institutions that it is worth his while to be associated with).
(4) Demands excessive and exceptional admiration.
(5) Feels that he is deserving of exceptionally good treatment, automatic obeisance of his (usually unrealistic) expectations.
(6) Exploitative in his interpersonal relationships, uses others to achieve his goals.
(7) Lacks empathy: is disinterested in other people's needs and emotions and does not identify with them.
(8) Envies others or believes that others envy him.
(9) Displays arrogance and haughtiness.
“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
Oh My Goodness!
Father Knows Best
43% Solution (National Guard)
Busting a Freeper
A Comment Brought To You By Mrs. 9Driver
Crooks and Liars
Back To Iraq
Digby (Great Writer!)
The General JC Christian