Thursday, February 17, 2005

Commentary and links for you! (With update)

Without getting too much into it: there's been a lot of talk about Social Security lately.

Let me propose something: The President may well be trying a bait-and-switch.

Consider: the President proposes some totally brain-dead plan for SS with the hopes that it gets shoved through. If it succeeds then he gets to strip one of the foundations of modernity out of America. This is apparently one of his goals. But if it fails then he co-opts the Democratic position and in the meantime makes the Democrats fight a war of attrition against his brain-dead plan.

I'm not saying the Democrats ought to have rolled over on this (that would have been very stupid) but rather that they need to be thinking strongly about... shall we say... an exit strategy from this mess.

Make the President sign on to the Democratic proposal, don't let him take the lead.

Let me repeat that: don't let him take the lead! Don't let him steal the credit for your plan.

Propose a fix for SS TODAY. Do it with a law if at all possible. If Bush says "Hey, I have an idea! Let's raise taxes!" don't let him claim it was his idea. Make the Republicans either reject the plan right now or make them sign on. Either way is a win.

Once more: do not let them take the lead!

Bush hasn't actually put forth a real plan yet. He's still testing the waters. I fear he's going to propose something virtually identical to the Dem position and then say "I never actually PROPOSED a plan!" and the Democratic Party will be left high and dry.

In other news...

I've intentionally stayed away from the Gannon/Guckert story in the past but i'm going to make a brief foray into the realm of gay prostitutes and the Republican Party that loves them.

The whole "private life" thing is bullshit. It's the same bullshit they coughed up when it was Mary Cheney. Yeah, she had a job as GLBT sensitivity leader at a publically traded company--but the fact that she likes girls is nonetheless "her private life and you're an evil homophobe for even mentioning it!"

Guckert (a.k.a. Gannon) running a military "escort service" is not his private life. Fuck, his "privates" are not even private. I have a picture of them on my computer screen. That's not private. It's not like this is some private photo collection that somehow got hacked into--not even like a private photo collection that accidentally got put up publically.

McClellen claimed not to know "Gannon" was an alias--but don't they do background checks?

So did he escape the background checks? Did McClellen just flat-out lie? Was McClellen out of the loop (as he was on the Condolezza Rice perjury)? All unanswered questions...

Furthermore, Guckert was apparently in on when the Iraq war would start 4+ hours prior to the actual announcement. Not only that but he leaked it.

And that's not all! He was also inovlved in the Plame leak in some shadowy way.

Curiouser and curiouser.

Hatemongering, projection, so-called "bloggers", and YOU!

More on the "mainstreaming" of hate.
Neo-Nazi organizations are not only putting up billboards, they're also instructing members to hide tattoos and dress for rallies in conservative suits to avoid being dismissed as extremists. Thomas Robb, the national director of the Knights of the KKK, urges his members to serve on community boards and in political parties so they can push their white-power agenda from positions of social respect.

How the Republicans are destroying the electoral process.
  • Undermine the legitimacy of any Democrat elected to office, regardless of the margin.
  • Undermine public confidence in long-established election procedures, particularly hand recounts, as well as confidence in the integrity of the officials conducting the elections.
  • Undermine the voting rights of minorities and lower-income voters, particularly by purging supposed felons from the voting rolls, thereby discouraging participation in the election process and underscoring their historic disenfranchisement.
  • Undermine the integrity of the voting process itself by introducing readily manipulable electronic voting technology that leaves no auditable paper trail.

A story on Yahoo claims the army destroyed more pictures from Abu Ghraib--and ones that were worse than the ones we've seen so far.

The US opposes ICC trials.

But hey, Rwanda and Sudan were no big deal right? It was the UN Oil for Food program that's really important. What's a million lives here or there?

It's like a bad episode of Babylon 5. Things are so out of control that even the guy who started the war in the first place can't manage to get anything out of it. So those are my reasons why I haven't been excited about the blooming desert flower of democracy in Iraq. To me that `flower' is looking more and more like kudzu. Sure it spreads, but it's damn near impossible to get rid of it. And even though it seemed like a good idea at the time, it's turned into a complete nightmare. A lot of Republicans will call this `hand-wringing.' I consider it `giving away the ending.' I probably should have put a Spoiler Alert up at the top. I hope I haven't ruined it for you. I just hope I'm wrong.

You know how, in my previous post, i discussed a certain someone who was tangled up in Guantanamo Bay? I'm not the only one who has been noticing Bush's nominations are a little... out there...

Limbaugh lies about lying. And so does B.O. (That's Bill O'Reilly to you).

"Now, I know that Limbaugh doesn't have a lot of experience with successful relationships, but attacking someone's spouse is generally considered to be pretty low down and dirty. In fact, some would call his reckless allegations libelous -- my lawyer, for example. I also know that Limbaugh suffers from a rather severe case of McCarthy-era nostalgia, but equating liberalism with communism is tired and boorish even for someone who is a big, fat idiot. I use the term advisedly."

James Roosevelt Jr. suggests Hume resign. I second that.

FreeRepublic and Republican talking head are having a go at each other. Quick: can we drive a wedge between them further, perhaps?

"Frist's Fury Over Filibusters"

Global warming is a myth!

Backdoor privatization remains privatization

Guantanamo is our generation's "internment camp".

Let the slander begin!

(As an aside: the Democrats ought to get behind Dean on this one. All of them. Dean is taking the stand that the Democrats should have taken fifteen years ago.)

The Democrats should oppose this in the same manner.

And more of the same.

Twenty-seven rationales for war.

In the same vein: "Shifting the Goalposts".

On Bush's "Charm Offensive"...

A request for new hearings with Dr. Rice. This one deserves some more air time!

"Why We Hated Clinton."

"The Soft Racism of Low Expectations"

Finally: Dean and Perle debate on CSPAN tomorrow night. Perle gets a shoe thrown at him. Yes, a shoe. I wonder if the person doing the shoe-throwing was an Iraqi?


Democrats introduce voting reform legislation. It looks pretty good, but it has approximately a snowball's chance in Hell while the Republicans are in-charge. But i'll save the Republican electoral strategy talk for later.


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