U P D A T E D W E E K L Y ! ! !
The Last Bastion of America's Liberal Media
Nov 1, 2004
Turd of the Week
George Bush, snuggle the Stuckey's butt log. You've set America so far back in nearly every aspect of security, progress and compassion. Millions of us hope you go down hard.
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Iraq War Cost
Experience - you claim your guy has Presidential experience. Well, he's certainly warmed the seat for many moons. But I counter with this: What is experience without learning from it? Supporters point to Bush's determination in the form of never wavering, never feeling he's made a mistake. In other words, he has never had a realization that he might act differently with the wisdom of reflection. If he would never act differently in the future, then you might as well conclude that experience adds no value. On the other hand, JFK has had 20+ years of experience in foreign policy and can quite readily cite instances where he has learned from mistakes (an admission the Bushies love to pounce on as weak and indecisive).
Strength - So you claim to respect strength. Fair enough. But do you want real strength or the perception of strength? Is it strength to wield military power that ultimately reveals its inherent limits? Is it a display of strength to alienate allies while pushing a war with no inherent interest for America? Is it strength to talk tough about capturing Osama bin Laden rather than do it? If strength is measured on the basis of bellicose saber rattling, initiative in war mongering, failure to attend to the cultural tendencies of nations you're invading with the goal of imposing your own view of freedom, then yes, Bush is strong.
Character - This is most unbelievable arena for the Bush leans. Where is Bush's character? It can't be from his spotty (at best!) military service. It can't be from his decades of alcoholism and cocaine binging. It can't be from his business "ventures" in which his reverse acumen was propped up again and again by friends of Daddy, including the Harken deals in which stock holders were swindled out of millions of dollars as Bush deceived them of the true value of the company. It can't be from his calls for war in which he deliberately hand-picked and distorted intelligence to suit his Iraq vendetta, and from which he has never recanted in the face of overwhelming contravening reality. It can't be his utter refusal to be accountable for horrific things like Abu Graib, the disaster that Iraq has become or the outing of Valerie Plame. But in fairness he never got caught in an intern blowjob lie, and more importantly, he was never in the same political party as someone who did.
Truth - ahh, the coupe de grace. Do I need to enumerate the reasons he gave about Iraq's threat, while evidence shows there was much evidence that spoke otherwise? Do I need to bring up his systematic rejection of scientific truth that indicts his agenda? Do I need to mention the deliberate misleading of America on the Saddam/Al Qaeda connection, that back here on Planet Earth doesn't exist? Must I recycle Bush's incessant insistence that things are going well in Iraq (although it is hard wark). Meanwhile, the only lies associated with Kerry are the ones fabricated by Bush's brain, Karl Rove and his cronies, the Swift Boat Henchmen for Bush.
All the busts against Kerry are flimsy and manufactured. Given the attention span of Bush supporters, they have been sufficiently packaged so as to provide memorability amidst other compelling TV trivia. The Swift Boat thing - all lies proven so by myriad sources, including historical military testimony from the SBV4T themselves. The flip-floppiness, which by the way, should stand in stark contrast to the image of him as a dangerous liberal (how can you be a strong liberal if you're flip flopping?), is a comment on someone who tends to defy an idealistic voting trend. In other words, if you're not voting straight right or left-wing, you're by definition a flip-flopper.
We won't know anything tomorrow evening, I suspect, although the GOP declaration of Bush victory will be deafening. By any means necessary, Bush's victory will be declared, unless Kerry's lead is definitive, in which case we can only hope the Elephant will be in such shock, they don't unleash their lawyers. We saw what happened with the so-called mandate last time around, so who's to think the lurch to the right won't be even further pronounced with a similar highly dubious outcome. Perhaps this will be the first election in which the attack ads extend well into the recount process.
So if you just can't bring yourself to vote for Kerry, but you agree with the above, please just invest a vote into the Intergalactic-Martian-Love-Party's candidate Gerald Fitzsimmons.
|Professor Pissed on the Rampage!|
|Ahhhhhhhh..... the pressure mounts. Ten times
a day here in the UK I get asked (when people hear my accent), *Who do
you think is going to win the election?* It's a curious idea that my cultural
connection to the USA somehow gives my thoughts on the election a predictive
value. I've become a soothsayer for the future of the world.....
For it's clear that no less is at stake (or is that American hubris speaking?).
My answer to them is inflected, of course, by my own desires. Which in turn are weirdly shaped by my experience as a disaffected left-winger who was propelled further leftward from the *left coast* across the former Soviet Union through Europe to Blair's Britain after the last election. Where does that leave me now, politically speaking?....
.... deeply moved by small aspects of British culture: the widespread disgust in Manchester (the city where Marx and Engels met) towards the reactionism of the Blair administration; the small kindnesses that work their way through the legendary (and sometimes quite offputting, for a former Angeleno) reserve of the English; and the refusal of British media outlets to pretend to be objective -- a pretension that, to my mind, has destroyed most of the American media (venus that now, due to the guilt of mostly vaguely left-of-center journalists who want to appear to be objective, have become either vapid or openly far-right in orientation).
The British, and broadly European, tendency to embrace the idea that expressing a strong political point of view is crucial to the power of news reporting can result in some of the best polemical and investigative journalism ever -- and right now, nothing could be more needed (witness the international celebrity of blatantly partisan Michael Moore).
Thus, enter the BBC special *The Power of Nightmares* -- one of the best things I've seen on t.v. in years. The middle episode, which aired this week, traced the history of fundamentalist Islam and the war-mongering power behind W.'s folksy leadership profile (namely, people like Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz... with Dick Cheney as its grim public face), showing the eerie parallels between each group's strategic manufacture of the other side as an *evil empire* to be defeated through unilateral violence. Just as the collapse of the USSR made it imperative for the Reagan and first Bush administrations (spearheaded by the likes of Wolfowitz and Perle) to manufacture a new enemy (guess who? Saddam Hussein.... leading into the first Gulf War) and then, under the Clinton administration, for the same group to join forces with Christian fundamentalists to demonize the Clintons themselves (Whitewater... Travelgate... Gennifer Flowers... etc., etc.) -- so the radical Islamic fundamentalists sought to consolidate their power by forging an increasingly coherent vendetta against western democracy and ultimate America in particular.
So. What do I tell people when they ask me who I think is going to win? I'll tell you after next Tuesday.... All I'll say now is that it will be ugly either way. If Bush *wins* (or steals the election again), more people will die and more lies will be told and American democracy (in its ideal form) will continue to go down the toilet. If Kerry wins, the right wingers will galvanize again (or, rather, will continue to galvanize the nasty forces they've put in motion during the election) to make John and Theresa's lives miserable. As *The Power of Nightmares* made clear, these guys will do anything to regain power, for they are just as fanatical and single-minded as Osama bin Laden himself. And they are in some ways ultimately much more dangerous -- they have access to more weapons (both literally and metaphorically), and their warmongering, after all, has caused far more deaths than were lost in the 9/11 attacks.
Still, I'd far, far rather see Kerry fighting it out than a continuation of the debasement of American culture and politics, and of the flood of death and impoverishment as promised by the Bush administration. Waiting with bated breath.....
Where've you bin Hidin'?
I suspect any reminder that ObL is alive, healthy, has a desk and can make a video tape, sends chills down the collective American spine. His appearance may be a negative for Bush, although the fester time isn't sufficient for Kerry to beat his head into it. Plus any time terrorism is brought up, Bush's mad dog appeal tends to gain credence against conventional wisdom.
Curious isn't it, that we've seen only 6 of the total 18 minutes of the tape said to exist. Given ObL's agenda of isolating America, pulling America into a war on the terms of his terrorists and tricking America into curtailing its citizens' rights, whom do you think he wants to win the election? Kerry will involve more nations of the world in the Iraq fiasco. He will resume the abruptly halted search for ObL. He will roll back the most heinous powers of the freedom oppressing Patriot Act.
Sure seems that Bush in power is better for advancing the Al Qaeda cause.
754,000 Pounds of Plastic Explosives
1) Nobody knows whether or not these explosives were taken before we got there anyway. Actually, evidence is mounting that these stockpiles were safely in place during the US invasion.
2) Well, Saddam had some 300,000 tons anyway. the 370 ton figure is little more than a tenth of one percent. Wow, that's a doozie. When you consider the Pentagon estimates there are 250,000 tons or Iraq explosives whose whereabouts they have no clue, that leaves an embarrassing gap in containment that is merely emblematic in the Al QaQa fiasco.
3) See, we told you he had bomb stuff. This is a pitiful stretch. As powerful as these plastic explosives are, they are conventional. No bio, no chemy, no nuclear, just boom. Then again, it's all you need for a conventional car bomb. Consider that the Pan Am flight over Lockerbie was blown up with less than one pound of plastic explosive. That means a whole lot more carnage before it is used up. And that's not even counting the 250,000 tons we don't know about.
And Rumsfeld has a job that ain't makin' license plates. Amazing.
All my sour grapes rationales I am saving in the event of a Bush victory (or anointment, as the case may be), serve no buffer from the inevitable rightward tilt of the Supreme Court, whose newfound conservative strength would no doubt usher in radical curtailments of women's rights, gay rights, freedom to not endure peer prayer pressure in schools. An my consolation? If we take Bush at his word from the debates, he wouldn't appoint a justice who supports the Dred Scott case.
The court system is second only to the environment in the arena least likely to recover from Bush II. Long after America rejects the Bush plan of world dominion, these judges and justices will be spewing their draconian rulings which bring back days of institutionalized hatred.
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