Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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December 19, 2005
By: Kevin Drum

BACK FROM VACATION....It looks like I missed the excitement over George Bush's latest assertion that he can do anything he wants because we're at war including warrantless spying on U.S. citizens. Luckily, both Hilzoy and Shakespeare's Sister kept up a terrific drumbeat of coverage over the weekend, so I feel like I've caught up just by reading my own blog now that I'm home.

(Yes, it's mildly ironic that I keep up with current events far better when I'm in California than I do when I'm actually in our nation's capital. But I've barely even read a newspaper for the past four days.)

In any case, many thanks to both of my guest bloggers for filling in while I was gone. I hope everyone enjoyed the change of pace. I'll be back blogging as usual Monday morning.

Kevin Drum 1:20 AM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (77)

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Comments

It's been fascinating watching the usual conservative suspects here duck, bob, and weave and do everything in their power to avoid actually discussing the real issues in this matter. I can hardly wait to see what they come up with next.

Posted by: PaulB on December 19, 2005 at 1:14 AM | PERMALINK

Yeah, welcome back from vacation. We have a dictator now.

Posted by: MillionthMonkey on December 19, 2005 at 1:14 AM | PERMALINK

Welcome back, Kevin.

FYI: Looks like the next salvo in the rightwing excuse-for-breaking-the-law is Operation Echelon.

$100 says this ends up on Limbaugh's show tomorrow.

Posted by: carla on December 19, 2005 at 1:21 AM | PERMALINK

Hmm, looks like the Beltway Echo Chamber is alive and well. Welcome back to reality Kevin.

Posted by: MNPundit on December 19, 2005 at 1:29 AM | PERMALINK

Good job. You should visit the capital a bit more often, so that all the other shenaginans of the Bushistas come out in the open.

Posted by: lib on December 19, 2005 at 1:38 AM | PERMALINK

I'm just frustrated that the very last word in human perfectability, the mainstream media, couldn't get this story out last year in October.

Dang it.

But, I'm sure they tried.

Posted by: sixteenwords on December 19, 2005 at 1:39 AM | PERMALINK

Welcome home Kevin. Hope you had a good vacation. Excellent choice of guest bloggers, by the way.

Posted by: Global Citizen on December 19, 2005 at 1:43 AM | PERMALINK

Perhaps people will say that absence makes the heart grow fonder, but you really are the best liberal blogger in the blogosphre.

Posted by: Me2d on December 19, 2005 at 1:47 AM | PERMALINK

I'm just frustrated that the very last word in human perfectability, the mainstream media, couldn't get this story out last year in October.
Posted by: sixteenwords on December 19, 2005 at 1:39 AM | PERMALINK

You know damn well that had they tried it on the heels of Rathergate, (and Swift Boat Liars), that most people would have though of it as just another part of the Kerry campaign. No one would believe it. Sad, but Democratic "moderates" and the Mainstream Media corporatist puppets are completely in Bush's thrall, and these kind of stories can be very time sensitive.

What's really too bad is that before Bush got elected, many of us on the left TOLD y'all that Bush was crooked. But 50.1% of the voters apparently didn't listen. I guess what Lincoln said was true. You CAN fool all of the people some of the time (50.1%, for election day).

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on December 19, 2005 at 1:50 AM | PERMALINK

Nice, strategic vacation to avoid confronting the reality of election and success in Iraq.

So if an elected democractic government with 70% voter turnout asks for US help... how are you 'liberals' going to build a moral case for 'cut and run'?

Posted by: McAristotle on December 19, 2005 at 2:16 AM | PERMALINK

Nice !

Posted by: worldofwarcraftgold on December 19, 2005 at 2:20 AM | PERMALINK

McAristotle, are you talking about Haiti again?

Posted by: Matt on December 19, 2005 at 2:20 AM | PERMALINK

Nice !

Posted by: world of warcraft gold on December 19, 2005 at 2:22 AM | PERMALINK

Just as an aside, Global Citizen, hope you're feeling better.

Posted by: tbrosz on December 19, 2005 at 2:23 AM | PERMALINK

Tommy Boy,

It's good to see you being nice to the liberals. I was worried you had forgotten your roots, err, spores. Just remember, green mist is not a symbol for unregulated environmental despoliation, but rather a subtle hint that global warming will doom your children. Night, night Tommy. Play nice now.

Posted by: Uncle Tyco on December 19, 2005 at 2:54 AM | PERMALINK

Re: McAristotle's comment, when did the Right become a bunch of heavily-armed social workers?

Posted by: VKW on December 19, 2005 at 3:31 AM | PERMALINK

when did the Right become a bunch of heavily-armed social workers?

Posted by: VKW on December 19, 2005 at 3:31 AM | PERMALINK

Not sure.

A little bit in Reagan. More in Bush I. More in Clinton and lots in Bush II. For most of my adult life from an Asian viewpoint, America has been non-isolationist.

Got another alternative for failed states?

Posted by: McAristotle on December 19, 2005 at 3:49 AM | PERMALINK

Echoing GC: this has been some premium blogging. Not that we didn't miss our dependable Drum, of course.

Even in D.C. the L.A. Times is available on street corners and tends to run out by noon. The Post is a poor subsitute, and even the N.Y. Times doesn't always satisfy. We Southern Californians don't always recognize how good we have it.

Posted by: bad Jim on December 19, 2005 at 4:13 AM | PERMALINK

O?

Posted by: bad Jim on December 19, 2005 at 5:36 AM | PERMALINK

Maybe this will be the ticket that final puts Bush in the impeachement arena.

This from WP

Bush said the program was narrowly designed and used in a manner "consistent with U.S. law and the Constitution." He said it targets only international communications of people inside the United States with "a clear link" to al Qaeda or related terrorist organizations.

It doesn't matter that it was what Bush called "international" communications because the FISA only covers acts of a foriegn nature and for anything else, Bush should have used the regular court system but you can't montor war protestor though court systems, at least no legally and I bet most had NO link at all to al Qaeda or ANY related terrorist activity.

They pointed to a 1978 federal law, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which provides for domestic surveillance under extreme situations, but only with court approval.

Whatever Bush was doing, I'm sure it have nothing to do with terrorist plots rather, as we all know as we see how vindictive and paranoid this administration is toward anyone opposing Bush's policies. There is not doubt in my mind that whatever Bush wanted investigated had nothing whatsoever to do with the planning or the plotting of terrorist acts.

It's nice to see that a majority of Americans are beginning to see Bush as the consummate liar that most of us have always known was an undeniable fact about Bush and this administration.

Posted by: Cheryl on December 19, 2005 at 5:48 AM | PERMALINK

I'm just frustrated that the very last word in human perfectability, the mainstream media, couldn't get this story out last year in October.

I can't see why NYT sit on this story, pretty much - I think we did know what Bush was doing but it would have done little good in apost 9/11 world, a world of post-terrorist fears, American citizens would not have care, but now with Bush's poll number on downslide - Americans have suddenly decided that they do care about their rights.


Posted by: Cheryl on December 19, 2005 at 6:01 AM | PERMALINK

"I'll be back blogging as usual Monday morning."

I can hardly wait. I look forward to your centrist rationalization and extension of the wimpy olive branch to the latest Buscho outrage.

Posted by: slammin' sammy on December 19, 2005 at 7:31 AM | PERMALINK

The Bushills, including Condi, are blithly throwing around "The President's powers as Commander in Chief" - but that only means he is supreme authority over the armed forces, nothing more.

Posted by: Neil' on December 19, 2005 at 8:24 AM | PERMALINK

It's all OK. The week started off great with the news that we now have a plan for victory.

33 months and 2100+ U.S. bodies late, but we now have a plan.

Posted by: wishIwuz2 on December 19, 2005 at 8:50 AM | PERMALINK

10:30 Newsconference--

Gee, I wonder if the press will ask about the War on Christmas.

It would be nice to see someone follow up on all the red meat that has been thrown into the water over the last 3 days.

Here's what my question would be:

The CNN Story would set it up--

Security forces surrounded the Cheneys' vehicle and walked along, as it moved with their hands on the side of the vehicle. A gun-toting Afghan soldier dressed in fatigues pushed the rest of Cheney's entourage against an outside wall until the gates to the parliament building closed behind them.

Afghan security forces insisted on searching all the bags carried by members of Cheney's staff and the press who were left outside. Secret Service agents objected, saying they had already been checked. A White House advance staffer already on site came out and angrily demanded that the Afghans admit military aides carrying the briefcase that contains the U.S. government's nuclear weapon codes.

Why is the Vice-President of the United States now in custody of "The Football" and when did you surrender this item to the Vice-President? Is this a duplicate "Football" and how wise is it to have two different people in charge of the same thing? Does it have anything to do with the fact that you are an untreated alcoholic, Mr. President?

Posted by: Pale Rider on December 19, 2005 at 9:03 AM | PERMALINK

Pale Rider - please, what's the deal on this weird Cheney and nuclear football story? I never heard about it.

Posted by: Neil' on December 19, 2005 at 9:17 AM | PERMALINK

It's buried (as usual) in this story:

http://www.cnn.com/2005/WORLD/asiapcf/12/19/cheney.ap/index.html

So now the Vice President of the United States carries the so-called "Nuclear Football."

Why isn't this the number one story in the country right now? Oh, that's right, it's no big deal. Who cares. Hey, what's next for Jessica and Nick!?!

Posted by: Pale Rider on December 19, 2005 at 9:39 AM | PERMALINK

Look, that makes sense to me. If (hypothetically) there were an attack on the US, and the President were killed, the VP should have the football (or a copy of it). It's the same logic that dictates the President have the football with him at all times (in case of surprise attack he should have the information whereever he is).

It's the same logic that says one cabinet secretary should not attend the SOTU in case the rest of the government is blown up s/he can be sworn in as President.

Really, we have much, much, much bigger issues to worry about ("I'm the President. We're at war. As long as we're at war I make any rule I want") than this silly, and explainable, football mention......

Posted by: zmulls on December 19, 2005 at 9:45 AM | PERMALINK

....It looks like I missed the excitement over George Bush's latest assertion that he can do anything he wants because we're at war including warrantless spying on U.S. citizens.

We're at war? With whom? When did Congress declare this war? We're not at war with Iraq, of course, since Iraq is an ally. We're not at war with Al Qaeda, since if we were at war with them their prisoners we hold would be POWs, not "illegal combatants."

The answer, of course, is that we're not at war but that it suits the rabid Republicans' fascist governing methods to invoke an endless never-ending war against a vague and unseen enemy to justify any outrage and indecency they desire to commit.

Posted by: Stefan on December 19, 2005 at 9:50 AM | PERMALINK

PR,

Well, Dickie was the starting QB in high school. Twigless was only a cheerleader.

Posted by: thethirdPaul on December 19, 2005 at 9:50 AM | PERMALINK

If (hypothetically) there were an attack on the US, and the President were killed, the VP should have the football (or a copy of it). It's the same logic that dictates the President have the football with him at all times (in case of surprise attack he should have the information whereever he is).

There's no mention of a duplicate football anywhere. I've looked at several different pieces and I just don't think that "The Football" should be traipsing across Afghanistant with Dick and Lynne Cheney and, for a little while at least, nearly in the hands of the Afghans. Twenty years ago, this would have been grounds for a shooting war and a pile of dead bodies. And before anyone brings it up, yeah, Clinton was separated from the Football in 1999 when they left the guy carrying it behind and the poor guy had to walk a half mile to the White House. Shouldn't have happened, it was a mistake, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Apparently, if you're a Republican, all you have to do is say "well, Clinton did it!!!" and you're off the hook.

But, hey. Thank God America doesn't care anymore! Hmm...I wonder how my mutual fund is doing...

Posted by: Pale Rider on December 19, 2005 at 9:51 AM | PERMALINK

McAnustotle: Nice, strategic vacation to avoid confronting the reality of election and success in Iraq.

Every time Bush speaks on the war, his approval ratings fall.

Nice strategery [sic].

What exactly do we win if we "win" Iraq, McAnus?

Conservatives, including you, still have not articulated this, still continue to duck the question.

What new and much closer goalposts have you set up this week for what constitutes a "win", btw?

Posted by: Advocate for God on December 19, 2005 at 9:56 AM | PERMALINK

Nice, strategic vacation to avoid confronting the reality of election and success in Iraq.

Yes, you'd think Drum could do a better job of coordinating his vacations with the Iraqi electoral schedule.

Posted by: Stefan on December 19, 2005 at 9:57 AM | PERMALINK

Can't you see that I love you, my citizen, so much, that I am more than willing to spy on you, detain you without probable cause, strip you of your rights as a citizen, send your children to endless war, so that I can protect you from terrorism.

I am your proverbial GOD, your imperial majesty and King, and I am more than willing to sacrifice my son, the Constitution, so that you all can be safe and protected from the evil terrorists. Can't you see that clearly ?! I love you so much.

Posted by: Bush's Mind on December 19, 2005 at 10:00 AM | PERMALINK

Bush vincit! Bush regnat! Bush imperator!

Posted by: Stefan on December 19, 2005 at 10:05 AM | PERMALINK

ein reich! ein fuhrer!

Posted by: McSocrates on December 19, 2005 at 10:09 AM | PERMALINK

PR,

But what about the other war? There was a report from MJ Memphis about the ACLU unit taking ears and antlers for their body counts in their March to the Pole. But, what of the Five Regimental Combat Teams formed to attack the other ethnic Christmas celebrations.
Any word yet from:
The Kazimierz Mijal unit attacking Polish displays in Chicago, such a Wesolych Swiat, prune dumplings and noodles w/poppy seed, the sacking of the Szopkis creches and trying to misdirect No Sw. Mikolaj?
The Red Brigade going after Buon Natale, il prespio creches, Babbo Natale and la Befana, the Christmas Witch in the Italian District. Never would happen if Rudy had power.
The Baeder Meinhoff unit firing at sightings of Kris Kringle, burning Tannenbaums, and scaring the hell out of anyone trying to say Frohe Weihnacten.
How about the poor Mexican immigrants being hasseled by the Che combat team and threatening anyone saying Los Feliz Boulevard Navidad with deportation?
I have heard that the Georges Marchais Band of cutthroats surrendered to the first group of citizens saying Joyeux Noel. No wonder Twigless didn't need them.

Check with your contacts and get back to FAUX News immediately.

Posted by: thethirdPaul on December 19, 2005 at 10:10 AM | PERMALINK

Did Kevin's comment indicate his vacation was in our Nation's capital in balmy December? Gads! Did he fly all the way there to catch the Redskins rout of the Cowboys?

Posted by: troglodyte on December 19, 2005 at 10:11 AM | PERMALINK

I've been reading everywhere (AP, NYT, etc) that Bush's speech last night contained admissions of error for the first time.

I went through that speech two times and did not find any such admission anywhere.

Can someone tell me what the news is referring to?

Posted by: chuck on December 19, 2005 at 10:13 AM | PERMALINK

Whatever happened to that war on drugs, anyway? So much for 'freedom' being on the march. Bolivian Marching Powder helps it along, I suppose...


Morales claims victory in Bolivia's vote
Socialist coca farmer will become nation's first indigenous president

Updated: 10:59 p.m. ET Dec. 18, 2005
LA PAZ, Bolivia - Bolivias socialist presidential candidate Evo Morales, who has promised to become Washingtons nightmare, said his victory was assured in Sundays elections after two independent exit polls showed him with an unexpectedly strong lead.

If the projected margin holds, Morales, a coca farmer who has said he will end a U.S.-backed anti-drug campaign aimed at eradicating the crop used to make cocaine, will likely be declared president in January over his conservative opponent.

If (the U.S.) wants relations, welcome, Morales said after voting, holding a news conference where piles of coca leaves were spread atop a Bolivian flag. But no to a relationship of submission.

[snip]

Morales counts Cubas Fidel Castro and Venezuelas Hugo Chavez among his friends, along with leftists in Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay who have gained power at the ballot box this decade. After the exit polls were released, an AP reporter at Morales home in Cochabamba said he immediately received a phone call from Chavez.

Posted by: Pale Rider on December 19, 2005 at 10:14 AM | PERMALINK

Where is that plan? I was sure by now that the brain trust of the democratic party would have coalesced by now and offered up a plan for victory in Iraq. Harry Reid told us last week that there would be a plan put forth soon. BTW, how did those elections go?

Posted by: Jay on December 19, 2005 at 10:22 AM | PERMALINK

PttO,

You cannot win the War on Christmas without fighting a rearguard action in the War on Drugs while you stave off an attack from the flanks from those who wish to fight a war on American culture.

Why have so many people who avoided military service taken us into so many wars, anyway?

Posted by: Pale Rider on December 19, 2005 at 10:23 AM | PERMALINK

"Morales claims victory"

Oh goody, can't wait for the Wooten spin machine to go into action. rdw where are you when Twigless needs you?

Posted by: thethirdPaul on December 19, 2005 at 10:23 AM | PERMALINK

thethirdpaul: But what about the other war? There was a report from MJ Memphis about the ACLU unit taking ears and antlers for their body counts in their March to the Pole. But, what of the Five Regimental Combat Teams formed to attack the other ethnic Christmas celebrations.

I think that with the War on Christmas we've finally, finally found a war that the wingnuts aren't afraid to fight in.

I can see the recruiting poster now: a grim-visaged St. Nicholas, pointing straight at the reader over the tag line "Santa Claus Needs You!"

Posted by: Stefan on December 19, 2005 at 10:24 AM | PERMALINK

Pale Rider: You cannot win the War on Christmas without fighting a rearguard action in the War on Drugs...

Didn't you read "The Onion" headline a few years back? "War on Drugs Over: Drugs Win."

Posted by: Stefan on December 19, 2005 at 10:27 AM | PERMALINK

PR,

Thought it was a nice touch with Dickie in Baghdad yesterday - His Tevlar vest had metal copies of all of his deferments attached. Fortunately, there were so many they covered his entire vest.

Posted by: thethirdPaul on December 19, 2005 at 10:29 AM | PERMALINK

Thought it was a nice touch with Dickie in Baghdad yesterday - His Tevlar vest had metal copies of all of his deferments attached. Fortunately, there were so many they covered his entire vest.

Hah! Brilliant.

They also serve who only stand and receive their deferments.

Posted by: Stefan on December 19, 2005 at 10:33 AM | PERMALINK

I thought those deferments were delivered via tube up the ass.

Did anyone else see the episode of South Park where Mr. Garrison inserts the tube in Mr. Slave and Lemmiwinks the Gerbil goes on a magical journey? Classic. The music was fabulous.

Awful, awful. Where's the bitter condemnation of the Radical Right? Can't they at least humiliate themselves by trying to start a War on South Park? Those guys need a little more material.

Posted by: Pale Rider on December 19, 2005 at 10:38 AM | PERMALINK

Harry Reid told us last week that there would be a plan put forth soon. BTW, how did those elections go?

Oh, so now Senator Reid has to solve all your problems for you, huh? Well, when he does put out a plan, I'm quite certain it will be far better than the plan we've had for the last two years, which has been "stay the course!" The new talking points sort of eliminated that plan last night.

How DID the elections go? Apparently, if you went into a Shia polling place, you were told to vote for a certain candidate. If you didn't vote for that candidate, you didn't get a ballot. It all has to do with the fatwa issued by Grand Ayatollah al-Sistani to vote a certain slate of candidates.

Not that anyone's paying attention.

I think we'd all rather talk about Lemmiwinks the Gerbil and Jessica Simpson.

Posted by: Pale Rider on December 19, 2005 at 10:47 AM | PERMALINK

What was that about Jessica Simpson?

Posted by: Stefan on December 19, 2005 at 10:50 AM | PERMALINK

The protection of civil rights is that information from warrentless taps cannot be used in court. Some issues cannot be resolved in court, because some people defy the jurisdiction of the court.

Posted by: Walter E. Wallis on December 19, 2005 at 10:56 AM | PERMALINK

So here goes the idiot king again trying to justify (and, of course succeeding with his minions who have surrendered their brains) WHY he can do whatever he wants...it's all about the 911 AND God, told me to do it! This man is completely coming unglued and we'd ALL better pray that things go well in Iraq...not only for the benefit of the people there...but because if his life falls apart too much we'll ALL pay even more! WHY does he keeps returning to the FEAR of those bad guys wanting to kill us...(thought fighting them "over there" was supposed to fix that?)...in the same way that fundamental religions hold their audiences captive with the FEAR of "whatever"...he/they use this to justify all their policies and behaviors...we are all living out the nightmare that the SUPREME SELECTION put out there in 2001...worse than 9/11

Posted by: Dancer on December 19, 2005 at 10:57 AM | PERMALINK

The protection of civil rights is that information from warrentless taps cannot be used in court. Some issues cannot be resolved in court, because some people defy the jurisdiction of the court.

It's normally called breaking the law when you defy the jurisdiction of a court.

Judas Priest did a song about it. Do you have a point? Because you could have posted the guitar tabulation from that song and made more sense.

Posted by: Pale Rider on December 19, 2005 at 11:00 AM | PERMALINK

Well, we had sister souljah.

Now we'er back to Kevin Dum-dum

Posted by: egbert on December 19, 2005 at 11:02 AM | PERMALINK

Oh god...the press conference makes me churn. What happened to America thanks to Emperor Bushigula I?

DAMN YOU BUSH, GIVE ME MY AMERICA BACK!

Posted by: Kryptik on December 19, 2005 at 11:04 AM | PERMALINK

Poor TVI doesn't understand the word "retroactive"...these guy/gals in the media need to learn to speak to him at his level!

Posted by: Dancer on December 19, 2005 at 11:12 AM | PERMALINK

Got another alternative for failed states?

Yes. Tell Bush to stop creating them.

Posted by: ckelly on December 19, 2005 at 11:12 AM | PERMALINK

What was the subject of this thread again? It looks like more of the choir preaching to itself. Last time I checked in it was Shakespeare Sis getting kudos, now we are wandering in self indulgent Bush bashing again with no direction, like all these threads seem to devolve into. It's easy to bash the administration, any administration - but I don't see this as a forum for ideas - more one that plays as a soapbox for liberal windbags who can't take opposing views without attacking the poster.

What has happened to this blog is that is is one-sided, and anyone who isn't a flaming liberal gets shooed away with invective and abusive language. What a shame.

Posted by: webdonkey on December 19, 2005 at 11:12 AM | PERMALINK

Oddly enough, the tale of Lemmiwinks could be a metaphor for a chief executive abrogating too much power to himself:

Lemmiwinks, Lemmiwinks, Lemmiwinks, Lemmiwinks!

Now that you're the Gerbil king there's more adventures to go on! Fly away to faraway lands and to the setting sun! So many enemies and battles yet to fight! For Lemmiwinks the Gerbil King's tale is told throughout the night!

It's pretty self-explanatory: "Now that you're a king" (no respect for constitutional limitations); "battles to fight" (with al-Qaeda, battles in the press); "far away lands" (Iraq, Texas, France) -- and the NYT breaking the wiretap story is the "tale told throughout the night."

Posted by: Windhorse on December 19, 2005 at 11:13 AM | PERMALINK

Americans on the whole are a cruel, fascist, xenophobic, suspicious, misogynistic, homophobic, superstitious people. All these traits allow Bush to break the law in the fashion he does. How many of us, when discussing violations of our rights, have heard people say "Let them come into my home, listen in on my phone calls, read my mail, I don't have anything to hide"? Millions of people, when espousing such sentiments, are forfeiting the entire 4th Amendment to the Constitution. Whether they'd honestly accept their mail and phone being routed through a government office is debateable, yet they gladly forsake these rights in theory when it doesn't touch them directly (as far as they know). So, when Bush pulls these stunts they support him or at a minimum don't care enough to raise hell about it. Bush and Rove know this and use it. As long as it's Arabs, Muslims, Gays, feminists, academics, atheists, "elitist libruls" or other convenient demons getting killed, thrown in jail or hauled into court they're happy. Bush will get away with his NSA antics and more because he's truly doing the bidding of the vast majority of the U.S. populace.

Posted by: steve duncan on December 19, 2005 at 11:14 AM | PERMALINK

Hey, If Dickie gets a Football, I should get one too. It's only fair!

Posted by: Bolton on December 19, 2005 at 11:19 AM | PERMALINK

What has happened to this blog is that is is one-sided, and anyone who isn't a flaming liberal gets shooed away with invective and abusive language. What a shame.

Uh, do you have a point? Or have you been drinking with Pvt Wallis again?

[hic!]

Posted by: Pale Rider on December 19, 2005 at 11:20 AM | PERMALINK

Under the Bush administration, we've become a mini-Soviet Union, a mini-Nazi Germany.

Secret police.

Secret orders.

Secret prisons.

Secret laws.

Torture as a state policy.

Invasions of countries that have not attacked us.

Rampant state-sponsored propaganda campaigns directed against our own people, using taxpayer dollars.

Rampant spying on our own citizens without court oversight and, if any, limited congressional oversight.

Rampant disregard for the Constitution and the laws of the land.

Rampant election fraud by the ruling party.

Party loyalty placed ahead of the law, ahead of the people, ahead of national security.

A governing administration that is indistiguishable from party apparatus.

Promotions based on loyalty to the leadership, rather than competence.

Self-serving partisan policy over science and reason and morality.

It is the perfect system for fascists and soviets.

Why does it exist here in America?

=================

Walter E. Wallis:

Some issues cannot be resolved in court, because some people defy the jurisdiction of the court.

I must have missed the constitutional amendment that says the courts can be bypassed and constitutional rights denied if a person "defies" the jurisdiction of the court.

Isn't it the executive's role to bring those persons before the court, regardless of defiance?

Isn't that why we have US Marshalls who track down, arrest, and bring suspects to court?

Did we bypass the courts when Noriega refused to voluntarily surrender to the jurisdiciton of American courts?

We already have a court of questionable constitutionality to review these matters and yet we still must bypass even this secret court?

This is the stupidest argument I think I've heard, despite the fact we have tbrosz, Jay, Nathan, rdw, McAristotle, and a host of other nitwits competing.

Posted by: Advocate for God on December 19, 2005 at 11:20 AM | PERMALINK

Hey - I should get one before Bolton, after all, I'm the guy in charge.

Posted by: Rummy on December 19, 2005 at 11:21 AM | PERMALINK

Steve, I will bet you're fun to party with.

Posted by: Jay on December 19, 2005 at 11:22 AM | PERMALINK

Anyone that wants to know why we're on an Anti-Bush tilt, at least on this moment of time, simply needs to read a newspaper and watch his abysmal press conference going on right now.

Posted by: Kryptik on December 19, 2005 at 11:23 AM | PERMALINK

Steve, I will bet you're fun to party with.

Can you arrange for your play-dates on another thread, please? This is the forum for liberal windbags who just want to bash Bush and shoo away anyone who disagrees with us.

Posted by: Pale Rider on December 19, 2005 at 11:24 AM | PERMALINK

Plagiarizing shamelessly from Billmon:

Bush declined to discuss the domestic eavesdropping program in a television interview, but he joined his aides in saying that the government acted lawfully and did not intrude on citizens' rights.
"Decisions made are made understanding we have an obligation to protect the civil liberties of the American people," Bush said on "The NewsHour With Jim Lehrer."
Washington Post
December 2005


Citizens of the U.S.S.R. are guaranteed inviolability of the person. No person may be placed under arrest except by decision of a court or with the sanction of a procurator.

The inviolability of the homes of citizens and privacy of correspondence are protected by law.
Constitution of the USSR
December 1936
Posted by: freedom_been_forgotten on December 19, 2005 at 11:26 AM | PERMALINK

Putting aside any comment in regard to partisanship, there are only two reasons this president would avoid using the existing draconian level of legal authority he has already created.

1: He and his team simply do not believe in any rule of law to oversee their actions.

2: The people and organizations under surveillance were not being watched for reasons on national security.

In either case they are not just crimes against the American people, Left, Right or Indifferent. They are also a gross crime against the common and universal values that define democracy.

George Walker Bush is a traitor and I am ashamed to be forced to call him President.

Posted by: JohnB on December 19, 2005 at 11:54 AM | PERMALINK

What's the name of that "law" that says eventually any online discussion will resort in someone comparing someone else to a Nazi or Hitler? It would be interesting if Kevin were to do a little statistics to see the average number of posts it takes for that to happen.

Posted by: gq on December 19, 2005 at 11:58 AM | PERMALINK

Godwin's Law!

Woo hoo!

Now we can start talking about who Jessica Simpson is going to marry next week...

Posted by: Pale Rider on December 19, 2005 at 12:04 PM | PERMALINK

Bush has claimed the power to label anyone an 'enemy combatant' and to imprison and torture them forever and a day.

Now Bush claims the power to spy on anyone anywhere.

Why hasn't Congress noticed before? Could it be that Congress doesn't notice anything which doesn't relate to them (like campaign finance laws)? Could it be that the President's popularity is so low that they fear he'll pull them down in the next elections?

Who stands for America and Americans? Don't look to Congress for that leadership -- they're too busy looking at public opinion polls.

Posted by: MarkH on December 19, 2005 at 12:34 PM | PERMALINK

anyone who isn't a flaming liberal gets shooed away with invective and abusive language

Yeah. Yer right. Now get the hell out of here.

Posted by: SED on December 19, 2005 at 12:37 PM | PERMALINK

Glad you're back Kevin!

Posted by: Tillman on December 19, 2005 at 12:43 PM | PERMALINK

Uncle Tyco:

In my experience, "green mist" is what you get when you put too many high-fiber vegans in a small room.

BTW, Tyco, what do you do Saturday nights in Pacific Grove when there aren't any girls of your own species anywhere around?

I'm beginning to worry a little now about Chuck and David...

"Say, my young fellows, would you care to see my new telescope?"

Posted by: tbrosz on December 19, 2005 at 12:44 PM | PERMALINK

It it just me or does anyone remember that article about that lawyer, whom used a library computer to email some friend(s). This lawyer didn't like the Bush administration, and like Joe Wilson was nothing more than a threat to this administration, and therefore arrested merely for the fact that he didn't like Bush's war lies - but same lawyer was certainly not plotting any terrorist activityies.

Bush has been tying to make libraryies turn over records of their patons online activities. Libraries have since then filed lawsuits in court over this request and of course the only people to have been caught up in Bush's little dragnet have been anti-Bush policy people.

So now we see that Bush is going to have this supposed open press conference tonight that is supposed to be 3-hours long. I like to push for Sam Donaldson to be there in the flesh and other REAL reporters and NOT a bunch of Bush kiss-ass, suck-up to this administration FOX news member wannabes.

BUT Knowing how the Bush administration likes to doctor things - I wonder if Bush is already fielding question from those same FOX news wanna be members? Is this so-called journalistic line-up going to be a bunch of so called Murdock select members invited only to kiss Bush's rear-end.

I want to see Dana Priest, Milbank, Dan Balz and some of names you can kind of trust that won't tiptop or even try to avoid the major hard-hitting questions. I want to see a real drill, BUT time and again, all we get from the Bushies made for TV productions is one doctored insulated, steriolized, bubbleboy prodution right after the other.

Bush was never able to "wing-it" the way Bill Clinton could do it because Bush has never known what was going on in his own administration unless he go it verbatim. Bush has been anything more than a "presidential face" who's job it was to go out there and mislead the nation for Dick Cheney's and Karl Rove's corrupt policies.

It's like that time that Bush tried that one-up man-ship with Howard Deans hour with Tim Russert. That's why I liked Howard Dean - because Bush felt compelled to compete with Howard. Bush's hour long press congress with Tim Russert cause Bush's poll number to plummeted. That Tim Russert special even had George Will writing that Bush look stupid or something.

It was Howard Dean that came out and said recently that were losing this war in Iraq and this is the very reason Bush now feels compelled to do this 3-hour interview.

This IS why I like Howard Dean - because he keeps putting Bush on the defensive and that is where Democrats should have been putting Bush all along and why I dislike centrist Dems so much because they never, never challenge Bush.

Posted by: Cheryl on December 19, 2005 at 12:46 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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