Making Conservatives Cringe Since 1977

I'm not Liberal, I'm paying attention.

30 September 2005


From Agitprop:

Right-Wing Talking Points Uncovered Thanks to some research by The Kenosha Kid, Operation Yellow Elephant has uncovered exclusive right-wing talking points against the "Chickenhawk" argument. As you may have guessed it, right-wingers consider themselves freedom fighters in the "War Of Ideas", not chickenhawks who voice support for a war in which they refuse to serve. This list comes from Reagan Youth, also known as Young America Foundation: 1. We are engaged in a war of ideas on college campuses that is essential to winning the war on terror. This is also very important since hateful professors are spewing anti-American rhetoric at the students every day and students rarely hear all sides of the argument. 2. The Vietnam war was lost because there weren't enough people on the homefront telling the truth and supporting the war... 3. Where were these leftists when Clinton was sending our troops to Kosovo, Somalia, and Haiti? They weren't signing up then. Also, why aren't they serving in various UN peacekeeping missions worldwide, according to their logic? 4. The troops in our programs tell us it is so important to continue the battle of ideas on campuses and to support the men overseas through programs like what we did with Freedom Alliance to send needed supplies and thank you notes over there during the conference. 5. We are the ones fighting for the right to serve in ROTC on campuses. The same leftists who criticize us for not joining the military are stripping willing and able college students at Yale, Harvard, Emory, Stanford, etc from their rights to serve their country. 6. The majority of Americans do not serve in the military, so the Left is essentially disenfranchising them from contributing their voice to the debate. 7. The logic is flawed that only people who are involved in something can voice an opinion about it. For example – the public voices its opinion about a wide range of government programs even though most people are not in the government, and people speak about welfare but not many are actually on it or administering it. Or to summarize--Liberals caused the U.S. to lose in Vietnam, critics of the Bush administration are anti-American, and last but not least, it's all Clinton's fault. Zieg heil, bitches.

27 September 2005


From the freeway blogger:

Rumsfail (rums´ fāl), v., 1. To self-destruct, melt-down or implode under the weight of one's own arrogance. 2. To fail spectacularly, particularly in matters of warfare or diplomacy; to plunge into chaos. 3. Absolute, unmitigated disaster of national or international proportions and consequence; policy failure so utterly abject and miserable as to approach the realm of the epic. "Although long considered to be a costly and murderous fiasco, the prisoner abuse scandal revealed the war in Iraq to be nothing short of a rumsfailure." See also: "Karma"

25 September 2005


If a tree falls in a forest and no one is nearby to hear it, does it make a sound?

If a tree falls in a forest and no one is nearby to hear it does it make a sound? Well, I’m back from our nation’s capitol, and I’m here to tell you, that’s about the size of it. My father, Kyle Whaley (a family friend), and my wife and I car pooled into Syracuse early Saturday morning around 1:00am. We arrived early at the meeting spot, filled with excitement and anticipation for the coming events. Awaiting us was an approximately nine hour bus ride to D.C., which, of course didn’t include the necessary rest stops for eating and bathroom breaks, or the ride into town on the metro.
When we arrived at our destination in Greenbelt, Maryland , slightly behind schedule due to a late start, we stepped out into a sea of busses. It seemed the whole parking lot was practically filled with other chartered busses and we (my wife) quickly noted our row number (4A) so we’d be able to find our way back. After some difficulty with the ticket system–we are by no means city folk, the last mass transportation system I had to deal with was in Germany, which was all touch screen ease– we preceded up the escalator to the Metro platform. While waiting for the next train so many people crowded onto the platform behind us that the employees at the station had to keep people off the escalator for fear the crowd would spill out onto the tracks.
I haven’t seen a train that crowded since I was stationed in Korea. We jumped off at the stop for the National Archives and walked straight into a staging area for counter protestors in front of the Naval Memorial. We walked through them with amazingly little to no conflict, and preceded past the IRS building and the National Museum of Natural History, down Constitution Ave towards the Washington Monument. We met some local press along the way and I did a short interview with a reporter from the Post Standard. I have to say I was caught a little off guard and hadn’t expected, nor had thought of how to handle, questions from the media, thus my remarks were a little off the cuff:

One of the many veterans in the crowd was Fred Bieling, of Auburn, who was stationed in Jordan during the Iraq war with a Patriot missile unit and is now in the National Guard. He came to the march with his father, Herman, a veteran of many Washington anti-war demonstrations.

"I'd like to see some action come out of this so we can maybe finally get an endgame and figure out how to bring the troops home," Fred Bieling said. "Maybe this will wake up some political people (and help them) realize if they want to get re-elected, they might want to start thinking about how to bring the troops home."

It's time for the governing of Iraq to be turned over to the people of Iraq, he said. "They have a constitution that they've forced through, and they're going to go ahead and vote on it, and after that they're on their own. I mean, just pack up and leave."

After that debacle (so much for my political career) our group, and the rest of the Syracuse Peace Council contingent, rallied at the corner of Constitution and 15th Street to await the start of the march, which was then almost an hour ahead at 12:30 pm.
Well, 12:30 came and went, there were so many people that it was literally a human traffic jam. Amazingly my wife and I ran into an old acquaintance, and an alumni of our alma mater, Moravia Central School, Kyle Gilbertson. Kyle is an amazing musician who I can remember playing the bass, even back while still in high school, with unreal speed and precision. He and I caught up on each others lives a little as he related how he was living in Chicago and was involved with the Socialist Worker, a newspaper with an online counterpart. He gave me a hard copy of the September 23rd issue, which I poured through on the bus ride home.
Melessa and I , along with my father and Kyle (Whaley) then made way into the throng of people at the start point, only to directed this here and there, as the Goldstar Families for Peace and the Veterans for Peace jockeyed for position. There was such confusion I never spied Mrs. Sheehan, although upon my return I realized she was right there in the crowd after viewing pictures of the march at Yahoo. [video here, pictures here] The crowd was so tight my wife had a resurgence of closterphobia, the first since her experience negotiating the steps to the top of Saint Paul’s Cathedral. We escaped the crowd and went to find a bathroom and some water.
As it turns out we wouldn’t see my Dad again until we returned to the Metro station, although we did find Kyle toward the end. We rejoined the march once it had finally started moving by paralleling it along 14th street and slipping in the crowd marching by the Treasury building. We were soon around the corner and onto New York Ave and within a few minutes we found ourselves at the White House.The momentum of the crowd slowed, just as it had in front of Madison Square Garden last year. Melessa and I enjoyed a sit down in Lafayette Park, eventually preceding past St. Johns Episcopal Church, "The Church of the Presidents," and on towards the Capitol building.
Then came the confrontation. No big deal really, just a shouting match between me and some meathead Jesus jumpers talking through a loudspeaker about how we’re all going to hell for doing what we are doing. So I went on ahead and blew my voice out screaming at this idiot. You should have seen the flash of surprise in his eyes when I started asking him why he was out of uniform. "Where is turban, where is your hood?" I pointed him out, to everyone's amusment, as a prime example of the American Taliban.
After we completed the circuit we found Kyle lying in the field of crosses next to Camp Casey. We made our way over just in time to catch a song or two from Wayne Kramer of the MC5 on our way to the World War Two Memorial. I’ll leave you with some parting words of wisdom I found there:

23 September 2005


See you there!

Saturday, September 24 Massive March, Rally & Festival Part of the UFPJ Sept. 24-26 D.C. Mobilization. 10:00AM All-Day Peace & Justice Festival Begins, Washington Monument Grounds 11:30AM Rally at Ellipse 12:30PM March steps off 3:00PM "Operation Ceasefire" Concert featuring Cindy Sheehan END THE WAR ON IRAQ BRING THE TROOPS HOME NOW! Leave no military bases behind End the looting of Iraq Stop the torture Stop bankrupting our communities No military recruitment in our schools More than two years after the illegal and immoral U.S. invasion of Iraq, the nightmare continues. More than 1600 U.S. soldiers have died, at least another 15,000 have been wounded; even the most conservative estimates of Iraqi deaths number in the tens of thousands. Iraq, a once sovereign nation, now lies in ruins under the military and corporate occupation of the United States; U.S. promises to rebuild have not been kept and Iraqis still lack food, water, electricity, and other basic needs. A majority of Americans believe that this war never should have happened, but our elected representatives in Washington continue to rubber-stamp the Bush Administration's disastrous Iraq policies. They have given military recruiters nearly unrestricted access to our schools -- and the Pentagon nearly unrestricted access to our tax dollars. At a time when our vital social programs are eroding or completely decimated, an overwhelming majority in Congress recently approved Bush's request for an additional $82 billion in war funding, and there's already talk of another $50 billion appropriation this fall. It's time to hold all pro-war politicians accountable for the deaths, the destruction, the lies, and the toll on our communities! Join United for Peace and Justice in Washington, D.C. for three massive days of action against the war: a major march, rally, and festival on Saturday, September 24; an interfaith religious service and day of grassroots trainings on Sunday, September 25; and a large-scale grassroots lobbying day and mass nonviolent direct action and civil disobedience on Monday, September 26. From every corner of this country, people will travel to Washington to bring our demands directly to the policymakers responsible for this unjust war. These three days of actions will send a clear message to the White House and Congress: The Iraq war must end. It's time to bring all the troops home, leaving no U.S. military bases behind, and to stop the corporate theft of Iraq's resources. Instead of draining our national treasury for endless war, we demand that our tax dollars be used to repair the damage done to Iraq and to fund services in our communities. We call for an immediate end to our government's assault on immigrants, the unethical pressures on our young people to join the military, and the undermining of democracy through relentless attacks on everyone's basic rights. Our mobilization will coincide with the meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, whose economic policies place corporate profits ahead of basic human needs worldwide. We will speak out against the corporate theft of Iraq's resources and the decimation of the Iraqi economy through privatization and "free trade." Join our weekend of action to stop this war, and help prevent any new wars!

21 September 2005


Another one...

Oswego mayor resigns while sex case pending September 21, 2005, 11:48 AM EDT OSWEGO, N.Y. -- Mayor John Gosek resigned Wednesday in the wake of his arrest on federal charges of using a cell phone to offer money and drugs to solicit sex from two underage girls. In a written statement, the 58-year-old Gosek said he had significant personal issues that need to be addressed in therapy and that those issues had "severely compromised" his ability to govern. His resignation, which he said came with a "heavy heart," was effective immediately. "At this time, I clearly have significant personal issues which I have to address ... My problems are my own and should not in any way reflect upon other members of my administration or any city councilors or the Republican Party," Gosek said. right...

20 September 2005


Magic Kingdom

Burger King recalls 'sacrilegious' desserts JOHN INNES THE fast-food chain, Burger King, is withdrawing its ice-cream cones after the lid of the dessert offended a Muslim. The man claimed the design resembled the Arabic inscription for Allah, and branded it sacrilegious, threatening a "jihad". The chain is being forced to spend thousands of pounds redesigning the lid with backing from The Muslim Council of Britain. It apologised and said: "The design simply represents a spinning ice-cream cone." The offending lid was spotted in a branch in Park Royal last week by business development manager Rashad Akhtar, 27, of High Wycombe. He was not satisfied by the decision to withdraw the cones and has called on Muslims to boycott Burger King. He said: "This is my jihad. How can you say it is a spinning swirl? If you spin it one way to the right you are offending Muslims." A Muslim Council spokesman said: "We commend the sensitive and prompt action that Burger King has taken." This article: Something a little odd going on there chap, are the scots "taking the piss"

God Save the Court

Roberts vs. Scalia and Thomas:How different are they after all? From: In the absence of specific answers by Supreme Court nominee John Roberts to many questions by Senate Judiciary Committee members, some commentators have suggested that Roberts’ statements on his general methods of legal analysis demonstrate that he would be very different from justices like Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court. That conclusion doesn’t hold up under a closer look at Roberts’ answers and the judicial track records of Thomas and Scalia. That’s why right-wing legal analysts expect Roberts to reach similar results as Scalia and Thomas, even if by a slightly different route. The result would pose serious danger to Americans’ rights and liberties. Textualism and originalism: Some commentators have pointed to Roberts’ statements that he does not have “an overarching judicial philosophy that I bring to every case,” suggesting that this is different than a Justice Scalia, who purportedly decides all cases in accord with his view of the text and “original meaning” of constitutional provisions.[1] Yet in many of the Court’s recent decisions severely limiting Congress’ authority on “federalism” grounds, Scalia, Thomas, and Chief Justice Rehnquist have strayed far from language and original intent. In particular, although the Eleventh Amendment by its terms bars only lawsuits against a state by citizens of another state, that provision has been transformed by the most conservative justices on the Court into a broad-reaching doctrine of state sovereign immunity that prevents a state’s own citizens from suing it to vindicate their rights against age and disability discrimination under federal law. In one case, for example, Scalia’s majority opinion explicitly conceded that the Court’s view of the Eleventh Amendment took it beyond its “precise terms” and rested instead on “constitutional tradition and precedent.”[2] Recently, even some conservatives have criticized Justice Scalia’s inconsistent use of originalist theories because of his vote to uphold federal law prohibiting the medical use of marijuana, complaining that Scalia’s opinion “appears to put his commitment to majoritarianism over his commitment to originalism.”[3] Roberts’ views may be no different than Scalia’s in this respect. Legislative History: Some commentators have also pointed to Roberts’ statement that although he first looks to the text of a statute or constitutional provision, he has also “quoted and looked to legislative history in the past” to help interpret a law as reflecting significant differences from Thomas and Scalia.[4] In fact, while these justices have criticized the use of legislative history when they believe it contradicts a statute’s language, both have joined or written opinions referring to legislative history in addition to text to interpret a statute.[5] And both Thomas and Scalia, of course, consider what they regard as the legislative history of constitutional provisions to determine their original intent. Again, the differences among the three jurists may well be more apparent than real. Right to privacy: Perhaps most significantly, some commentators suggested that Roberts distinguished himself from Thomas and Scalia by stating on his first day of testimony that the Constitution protects a right to privacy. Yet Roberts’ words in recognizing such a privacy right were almost identical to the words used by Thomas at his confirmation hearing, and Roberts explicitly noted that every member of the Court, presumably including Scalia and Thomas, recognizes such a right “to some extent or another.”[6] In response to follow-up questioning by senators, Roberts declined to identify any differences between himself and Justice Thomas on this important subject. Since Roberts would not say to what “extent” the Constitution protects personal privacy, beyond contraceptive use by married couples, he gave no reason to believe that he will act any differently than Scalia and Thomas when it comes to reproductive choice, sexual privacy for gay and lesbian people and non-married couples, and families’ difficult decision-making around end-of-life medical issues. The strongest evidence that there is no meaningful difference between Roberts and justices like Thomas and Scalia may come directly from conservative legal advocates themselves. Wendy Long, a former Thomas clerk and counsel to the Judicial Confirmation Network, has agreed that “while Roberts might use a different approach, he’ll likely end up in the same place on cases as Scalia and Thomas.”[7] Long, joined by the Federalist Society’s Leonard Leo and Jay Sekulow of Pat Robertson’ American Center for Law and Justice, have recently called Roberts “a promise kept” by a President who promised to appoint justices like Scalia and Thomas.[8] That promise threatens the rights of all Americans. NOTES: [1] See A. Liptak, “Chief Justice Nominee Speaks Volumes, While Saying Little,” New York Times (sept. 16, 2005). [2] See College Savings Bank v. Florida Prepaid Postsecondary Education Expense Board, 527 U.S. 666, 688 (1999). Accord, e.g., Board of Trustees of the University of Alabama v. Garrett, 531 U.S. 356, 363 (2001)(explaining that although “by its terms the [Eleventh] Amendment applies only to suits against a State by citizens of another State, our cases have extended the Amendment’s applicability to suits by citizens against their own States.”) [3] See R. Barnett, “The Ninth Circuit’s Revenge,” National Review Online (June 9, 2005)(discussing decision in Gonzales v. Reich). [4] See C. Lane, “A Conservative, Yes, but Not a Scalia,” Washington Post (Sept. 15, 2005). [5] See, e.g., General Dynamics Land Systems, Inc. v. Cline, 540 U.S. 581, 606 (2004) (Thomas, J., dissenting)(contending that the “only relevant piece of legislative history” supported his reading of the text of the statute in question); J.E.M. Ag Supply, Inc. v. Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc., 534 U.S. 124, 136, n.7 (2001) (discussion in majority opinion by Justice Thomas, joined by Justice Scalia, of Senate report along with statute’s text). [6] See People For the American Way, “Roberts’ So-Called Commitment to Privacy” (Sept. 14, 2005). [7] See T. Brune, “Right could be caught in the middle by Roberts,” Newsday (sept. 18, 2005). [8] Memorandum from Leonard Leo, Wendy Long, and Jay Sekulow to Interested parties re; John Roberts, Judcial Conservative (Sept. 16, 2005).

18 September 2005


skippy the bush kangaroo has De Ja Brew

historical hallowed grounds for impeachment the bulldog manifesto posts this:if a president attempted to accuse other government officials for the deaths arising from a catastrophe in new orleans, that president was subject to impeachment proceedings. it should be it was back then. and you think it was a coinkydink they used the word "reconstruction" in awol's speech last night? cheers! here's to impeachment proceedings! (image from

17 September 2005


All in the family

"They keep calling me fish Dad"
Suprise, suprise another Bush family degenerate taken off to jail. "My son's doing fine. It's a private matter. We will support him. We're sad for him. But I'm not going to discuss it on the public square with 30 cameras," Jeb said of his son John Ellis Bush. The youngest of Brother Jebs kids, John Ellis Bush's charges of public intoxication and resisting arrest aren't hard to believe. With his brother's troubles and sister's arrest, and his cousins, and his uncle's rocky past, there has been an unarguable trend in the family. I hope people will think twice before letting these kind of blueblood alcholics in office again. So much for "Family Values."

16 September 2005


From the Rude Pundit

The Blog Post About John Roberts' Confirmation Hearing: This is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing, and because it is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing, it will be devoid of content, it will not have any links to anything concrete, it will be circular in logic because it is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing. This is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing, and because it is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing, it will contain no obscenities or arguments, it will have no sexual or violent imagery, it will do everything it can not to offend anyone because it is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing. This is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing, and because it is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing, it is merely a formality, it is something that a blog needs to do, it does not, however, need to actually speak in specifics because, indeed, it is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing. This is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing, and because it is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing, you may ask it anything you like, you may praise it, you may decry it, but it will not say anything that might compromise its objectivity because it is the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing. And when it is over, you will agree that you know everything about the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing and that the blog post about John Roberts' confirmation hearing will become the blog post about the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. (Repeat this in an endless loop.)

13 September 2005



click here for more pictures...
Good showing at the protest.
Lots of people honked.
The counter protesters were more civil without John Alverez.
Except the bozo with the "We Support the Patriot Act" sign shouting about how the Syracuse Peace Council kills jews.
Cindy wasn't there, but that's O.K.
I met a fellow soldier who spoke out.
He is a true hero.
Why do we always send the poor? see also...

Syracuse Progressive


In His Own Words: John Roberts on Civil Rights

September 13, 2005 Mistique Cano 202-904-7222 (cl) 202-263-2882 (of) Related Links More on John Roberts Save Our Courts website "For the job of chief justice, John Roberts must step up to the plate and answer questions about his commitment to protecting the rights, freedoms and liberties of all Americans. His record is filled with deeply troubling views on civil rights, voting rights, gender discrimination, and other vital issues. Although the Bush White House has done its best to keep his record hidden, it is clear that Roberts has a lot to answer for." - Wade Henderson, executive director of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, the nation's oldest, largest, and most diverse civil and human rights coalition.

11 September 2005



What, you may think, has caused this fellow to lose his marbles? Worry not, reader, the above title is just a reference to one of my favorite books of all time, The Long Walk, by Stephen King. Some may say Orwell had predicted the future, in Animal Farm or 1984, others point to Ray Bradbury and Fahrenheit 451, but the future I see taking shape around me reminds me most of the story of Garrarty, Stebbins, McVries and the Major. The basic story is this, approximately 100 adolescent boys participate in a ritualized walk, commemorating and celebrating a dim memory of a traumatic yet pivotal event in America’s recent past. One hundred start out, only one finishes. If a participant falls below the designated speed, he is given a warning. One warning every minute not on pace until the third warning, which is most often soon followed by the report of a rifle. This becomes affectionately known by the boys as, “getting your ticket.” Who ever finishes gets his hearts desire. In the process the boys become attached to one another, much as the victims of traumatic experiences often do when sharing them with complete strangers, and so the story ensues. This not so distant future America is run by the “Major,” a militaristic leader who played some key roll in the vaguely described events which the “long walk,” commemorates. Starting to sound familiar? If not, lets take a look at some of the recent news: 'Freedom Walk' marks 9/11 in Washington Associated Press
WASHINGTON — It was a demonstration unlike legions of others in the capital. The T-shirts were Pentagon-approved, signs were banned and Cabinet secretaries, usually the target of protest, cheered on the throngs. Thousands walked today in remembrance of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, in tribute to U.S. troops abroad. By their presence, marchers endorsed the worldwide fight against terrorism that began after airliners slammed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a Pennsylvania field four years ago. U.S. soldiers in Iraq, Afghanistan and other outposts watched on video links as the crowd shouted, "America supports you." References to the politically divisive Iraq war were muted, but support for President Bush's policy was, for many, a subtext of the day.
I’m personally disgusted by this blatant exploitation of the events of September 11th, 2001. This so called “Freedom Walk,” sans unapproved tee-shirts or signs, smacks of fascism and militaristic propaganda. I listened to the family members of 911 victims speak in outrage that the memory of their loved ones, having already been whored out in the run up to the Iraq war, were now to be used annually for anything but a simple reminder of their humanity. The very irony that you could use these peoples memories in the context of a sanitized free-speechless zone, and call it “Patriot Day,” or a “Freedom Walk,” is absurd. The Houston Chronicle notes, “Security was tight. Participation in the walk was limited to those who registered before the weekend. Marchers were not allowed to carry signs.” Does that sound like America? Does that sound like freedom? Allison Barber, deputy assistant secretary of defense said, “Protesting the walk . . . would be tantamount to 'protesting the events of September 11 or protesting our veterans'.” Protesting the “Freedom Walk” is protesting the soldiers who fought honorably in Afghanistan before they were diverted to Iraq? Protesting the “Freedom Walk” is rallying against the innocent dead people? We protest the perversion of freedom, the taking in vain of the word freedom. We protest you wrapping yourself in the flag and acting like anyone who doesn’t think the same way is some kind of traitor. I am a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom and the Global War on Terrorism, and anyone who wants to tell me I’m not a patriot because I don’t wear some god damn lapel pin, or I criticize the President, can meet me at the steps of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue on September the 24th and we’ll have some words.

10 September 2005


No time for "Blame Gaming," we got fish'n to do...

From: I'm Just Saying

09 September 2005


Dean: 'We need to make moral choices'

Posted by Josh McConaha on September 7, 2005 at 06:42 PM

Governor Dean spoke to the National Baptist Convention of America in Miami on Wednesday, September 7th. The following are excerpts from the speech:

This is a critical moment in our nation's history and we have a shared responsibility to move our country forward and learn from the mistakes made and be truthful with ourselves about how and why this happened and what we must do going forward to rebuild America.

Because we will ultimately be judged by how we react in times of trouble and how we care for the least among us.

I want to talk to you not as the Chairman of the Democratic Party, but as an American. Last week, we witnessed tremendous acts of courage and heroism, of people coming together, opening their hearts to one another trying to reach out and help one another. That was America at its best.

But that's not all we saw. We saw people desperately trying to survive in conditions we could not imagine in an American city.

As survivors are evacuated, order is restored, the water slowly begins to recede, and we sort through the rubble, we must also begin to come to terms with the ugly truth that skin color, age and economics played a deadly role in who survived and who did not.

And the question that emerged: how can this happen in America?

The truth is, what we saw on the television in New Orleans exists here in Miami, and in every part of our country, every day. Because people are poor throughout our country. They are old. They are young. They are black, white, and brown. They are not refugees. They are our fellow Americans.

The truth is that we have ignored the poor for far too long. And until it washed right up on our front doorsteps, we might have continued to ignore the reality that poverty has too many of our fellow Americans in its grip, and we have a shared moral responsibility not to ignore it anymore.

According to the census numbers that were released just last week, there were 37 million people living in poverty in 2004, about 3.5 million of these were over the age of 65 and nearly 1 in 5 American Children Lived in Poverty During 2004. And nearly 25 percent of all African Americans lived in poverty in 2004.

We need to open our eyes in our own communities. We need a plan to rebuild America.

Because it is not enough for one of us to do well, because our fundamental value of community means that we owe something to one another, every day of every year -- and that unless we all have the opportunity to succeed none of us succeeds.

Together we will rebuild America.

Because it is not enough for just me and my family to do well. It is not enough if some of our children are loved and well-fed. It is not enough if some of our communities are vibrant, safe and clean. It is not good enough if aspiration is the province only of the wealthy.

The greatest test we now face as a nation moving forward is not to forget what we saw last week on television, and to act.

We need a plan to rebuild America. We need to restore accountability. We need to make moral choices. How could Senate Republican Leader Bill Frist even think of extending the estate tax? If there's $750 billion available, we should use that to rebuild America.

This is a time for leadership not partisanship, and there are numerous questions regarding the failures that we will need to be answered in the coming days and weeks, but the one I want to talk about now is where do we go from here? How do we rebuild America?

We will continue to press for answers to what failed and why, to help the survivors heal, to rebuild, to heed the lessons of the past week and take the steps to keep our citizens safe.

And we will continue to fight for our shared values, taking care of the weak and the poor, helping people succeed, making sure every American has health care, an economic policy that creates jobs, making it easier for people to take care of their families, a strong national defense, protecting our most basic rights, ensuring that every eligible American has the opportunity to exercise their right to vote.

We still have a great deal of work to do in this country to ensure social and economic justice for every American, particularly those who struggle in the shadows of poverty. We cannot afford to move backward.

We need to be a community again.

There are real differences between the direction our country has been going in over the past five years, and the direction we ought to be headed. That is what we are fighting for.

Because we believe America can do better and Americans deserve better from their leaders. We deserve leaders who get up every day and fight for each one of us, who see us and understand our struggles but who also work to make each one of us stronger thereby making all of us stronger.

Not because we are wealthy or important or because we gave a contribution to a campaign; because we are hard-working Americans who need our President to be on our side."

07 September 2005


From Media Matters:

Click to watch video
Pat Robertson, host of Christian Broadcasting Network's (CBN) The 700 Club and founder of the Christian Coalition of America, stated that, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Supreme Court nominee John G. Roberts Jr. can "be thankful that a tragedy has brought him some good."



Cheney Was Shopping For A Mansion While Disaster Struck by Michael in New York - 9/07/2005 12:33:00 PM Apparently, Condi Rice wasn't the only one who decided that the worst natural disaster in our country's history was the perfect time to go shopping. Rice, of course, was spotted on Fifth Avenue paying reportedly thousands of dollars on a pair of Ferragamo shoes. Cheney stayed on vacation while Hurricane Katrina struck. He stayed on vacation on Monday and Tuesday and Wednesday and Thursday and Friday and he was finally spotted back in Washington on Saturday. This was such a gross dereliction of duty that even liberal bloggers struggled for a reasonable explanation. Surely Cheney was deathly ill and simply incapable of doing what any decent human being would do during such a terrible disaster? Nope. Maureen Dowd says Cheney was house-hunting: The vice president has at long last lumbered back from a Wyoming vacation, and, reportedly, from shopping for a $2.9 million waterfront estate in St. Michael's, a retreat in the Chesapeake Bay where Rummy has a weekend home, where "Wedding Crashers" was filmed and where rich lobbyists hunt.Dick Cheney was SHOPPING FOR A MANSION DURING THE WORST NATURAL DISASTER IN OUR NATION'S HISTORY.

Freedom marches on

Historic OK for gay vows CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE FIRST IN U.S. TO APPROVE LEGALIZATION By Aaron C. Davis Mercury News Sacramento Bureau SACRAMENTO - In a stunning, historic decision, the California Legislature on Tuesday night became the first statehouse in the nation to approve same-sex marriage legislation. The Assembly's 41-35 vote -- the one-vote majority needed to pass the bill -- forces Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, on the eve of a divisive November special election, into the awkward role of being the first U.S. governor to decide if gays can marry. The bill would rewrite the state's definition of marriage as between "two persons,'' instead of as a union between ``a man and a woman.'' Schwarzenegger has 30 days to sign or veto the bill. If he takes no action, the bill would also become law, and California would become the second state behind Massachusetts to legally sanction same-sex marriage and the first to do so through legislation, not a court order. Schwarzenegger press secretary Margita Thompson would not say Tuesday whether the governor would sign the bill that bitterly divided the Legislature

06 September 2005


Note the date on this document

LA Gov. Blanco Asked Bush for Assistance on 8/28
'My Pet Goat' -- The Sequel This time, during a catastrophe, the president did not merely dither for seven minutes, but for three days, and his top advisors followed suit. While the media has done a good job in portraying the overall failure of leadership in this weeks hurricane's disaster, it has not focused enough on this deadly dereliction of duty. By Greg Mitchell (September 03, 2005) -- While a rising chorus in the press has taken the White House, FEMA and the Pentagon to task for performing miserably in their response to the human disaster on the Gulf Coast, few have focused on the most telling aspect of the entire failure. It’s not just incompetence. It’s a shameful lack of concern: The 9/11 “My Pet Goat” dithering on an administration-wide scale. Simply stated, the president and his top advisers chose vacation over action.


Blaming Katrina on Gays, Israel, and Man-on-Horse Sex

I've been stunned at how long it took a prominent member of the Christian right to blame the destruction wrought by Hurricane Katrina on America's cultural decadence and immorality. Finally, Rick Scarborough of Vision America and the Judeo-Christian Council for Constitutional Restoration has stepped up to the plate, blaming Katrina on gay marriage, man-on-horse sex, and Israel for evacuating a portion of the Messiah's planned landing strip. well, not me...


Next summer we're going to vacation in Iran

04 September 2005


Quick News Round-up

Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist Dies

William Hubbs Rehnquist, the 16th chief justice of the United States, died last night at his home in Arlington. He was 80.

House Speaker Dennis Hastert of Illinois Hastert: New Orleans "could be bulldozed" By The Associated Press WASHINGTON — It makes no sense to spend billions of dollars to rebuild a city that's 7 feet under sea level, House Speaker Dennis Hastert said of federal assistance for hurricane-devastated New Orleans. "It looks like a lot of that place could be bulldozed," the Illinois Republican said in an interview Wednesday with the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill. Congress likely to probe Guard response By Sharon Theimer / Associated Press New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson offered Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco help from his state's National Guard last Sunday, the day before Hurricane Katrina hit Louisiana. Blanco accepted, but paperwork needed to get the troops en route didn't come from Washington until late Thursday. Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., said the situation has shown major breakdowns in the nation's emergency response capabilities. "There must be some accountability in this process after the crisis is addressed," he said.

03 September 2005



"Federal, state and local officials struggled Friday to provide relief to New Orleans, where thousands of refugees from effects of Hurricane Katrina remained stranded with diminishing supplies of food and drinking water. Meanwhile, the official death toll in Mississippi climbed above 100." I can't believe this is happening in America. As one of my fellow National Guard soldier told me to day, after coming in from her foriegn affairs class at S.U., even Rome had to fall. These are some of the most unreal pictures I've ever seen.


NewsHounds We watch FOX so you don't have to. September 02, 2005

Condoleezza Rice Cuts NYC Vacation Short To Do Her Job

Big Story opened tonight with a Fox News Alert heralding a statement from Condoleeza Rice who returned to DC today after a shopping trip to NYC. Rice appeared shaken and nobody would have guessed that she had been indulging herself in New York instead of responding to International offers of support. 9/2/05

After Rice finished her business as usual non-statement, she paused and said "On a personal note.." and then went on to share that her family came from Alabama and Mississippi. She appeared emotionally affected for almost a split second while expressing her sorrow.

When those tough questions started coming, it was steel toed Condi who answered. Asked why Russia's offer had been turned down, she curtly replied that it was untrue making up some lame excuse. Then she was asked if FEMA was correct saying that 60 Countries had offered aid and none had been accepted. Rice looked visibly shaken while she was forced to spin an answer while standing there. Of course, she was probably standing in her new Ferragamo shoes and that made all the difference.

Reported by deborah at September 2, 2005 08:34 PM


"We've got a lot of rebuilding to do. First, we're going to save lives and stabilize the situation. And then we're going to help these communities rebuild. The good news is -- and it's hard for some to see it now -- that out of this chaos is going to come a fantastic Gulf Coast, like it was before. Out of the rubbles of Trent Lott's house -- he's lost his entire house -- there's going to be a fantastic house. And I'm looking forward to sitting on the porch." (Laughter) --George W. Bush, touring hurricane damage, Mobile, Ala., Sept. 2, 2005
"Americans should be prudent in their use of energy during the course of the next few weeks. Don't buy gas if you don't need it." —George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., Sept. 1, 2005

02 September 2005


Kanye West calls a spade, a spade...

What he said...
"President Bush does not care about Black people."
What he's thinking...
"We will not set an artificial timetable for helping New Orleans." Watch the Video here


"Totally Black"

"The Bush adminstration has broken the basic social contract in New Orleans, the one that goes all the way back to Thomas Hobbes and John Locke, the one that says we adhere to laws because you agree to protect us, and thus the city and its citizens have returned to the state of nature, which is to survive, motherfuckers, just survive."


State probe of gas prices is sought

Friday, September 02, 2005
By Kenn Peters
Staff writer

A sudden spike that sent gasoline prices over $3 a gallon in Central New York has the head of service station operators calling for a state investigation.

Ralph Bombardiere, executive director of the New York State Association of Service Stations & Repair Shops, said Thursday he believes a state agency with subpoena power should force oil company officials to explain why the price of gas has gone up 40 cents to 50 cents a gallon since Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast.

"I don't know the real reason and neither does anybody else, except the companies producing the gas. That's why we need a government agency with some authority to call people in," Bombardiere said.

01 September 2005


Boots on the ground

Not your typical day in the Cul-de-Sac
What are we looking at here? I can only imagine what others are feeling as they watch the horrific aftermath of hurricane Katrina. I can't even contemplate what the people of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama are going through. Did God Send the Hurricane? I heard a rumor today that one thousand troops from our state might be headed down there. I've read that,"more than a third of Mississippi's and Louisiana's National Guard troops are either in Iraq or supporting the war effort . . . " Does that have anything to do with the slow response by the government? Where is our Leader?


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