Sunday, August 14, 2005

ON THE CHICKENHAWK

WILL SOMEONE TELL THE PRESIDENT THE WAR IS OVER?
Someone Tell the President the War Is Over
By FRANK RICH
http://www.nytimes.com/2005/08/14/opinion/14rich.html

Excellent piece sent by Ken. The author, Mr. Rich, was the first reporter for the NYT to openly question Bush's motivation to go to war with Iraq. His first few articles appeared in the ARTS section of all places, not in the front pages. LS

Excerpts:

But our current Texas president has even outdone his predecessor; Mr. Bush has lost not only the country but also his army. Neither bonuses nor fudged standards nor the faking of high school diplomas has solved the recruitment shortfall. Now Jake Tapper of ABC News reports that the armed forces are so eager for bodies they will flout "don't ask, don't tell" and hang on to gay soldiers who tell, even if they tell the press.

The president's cable cadre is in disarray as well. At Fox News Bill O'Reilly is trashing Donald Rumsfeld for his incompetence, and Ann Coulter is chiding Mr. O'Reilly for being a defeatist. In an emblematic gesture akin to waving a white flag, Robert Novak walked off a CNN set and possibly out of a job rather than answer questions about his role in smearing the man who helped expose the administration's prewar inflation of Saddam W.M.D.'s. (On this sinking ship, it's hard to know which rat to root for. - this is probably a note from Ken and from LS, music to my eyes..hope the right wing cable nuts eat each other alive.)

As if the right-wing pundit crackup isn't unsettling enough, Mr. Bush's top war strategists, starting with Mr. Rumsfeld and Gen. Richard Myers, have of late tried to rebrand the war in Iraq as what the defense secretary calls "a global struggle against violent extremism." A struggle is what you have with your landlord. When the war's ├╝ber-managers start using euphemisms for a conflict this lethal, it's a clear sign that the battle to keep the Iraq war afloat with the American public is lost.

That battle crashed past the tipping point this month in Ohio. There's historical symmetry in that. It was in Cincinnati on Oct. 7, 2002, that Mr. Bush gave the fateful address that sped Congressional ratification of the war just days later. The speech was a miasma of self-delusion, half-truths and hype. The president said that "we know that Iraq and Al Qaeda have had high-level contacts that go back a decade," an exaggeration based on evidence that the Senate Intelligence Committee would later find far from conclusive. He said that Saddam "could have a nuclear weapon in less than a year" were he able to secure "an amount of highly enriched uranium a little larger than a single softball." Our own National Intelligence Estimate of Oct. 1 quoted State Department findings that claims of Iraqi pursuit of uranium in Africa were "highly dubious."

It was on these false premises - that Iraq was both a collaborator on 9/11 and about to inflict mushroom clouds on America - that honorable and brave young Americans were sent off to fight. Among them were the 19 marine reservists from a single suburban Cleveland battalion slaughtered in just three days at the start of this month. As they perished, another Ohio marine reservist who had served in Iraq came close to winning a Congressional election in southern Ohio. Paul Hackett, a Democrat who called the president a "chicken hawk," received 48 percent of the vote in exactly the kind of bedrock conservative Ohio district that decided the 2004 election for Mr. Bush.  (Well... -K)

"SOMEONE TELL THE PRESIDENT THE WAR IS OVER

"WHAT'S THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION HIDING? EVERYTHING"

This piece gives an excellent summary of the Bush coverups to date. LS

From the Herald-Mail Online, Hagerstown, Maryland

Excerpts:

Everything’s a secret except, of course, the identity of a covert CIA operative whose husband went off script.

Keeping the public in the dark allows the advance of a political agenda without messy facts interfering with the administration’s manipulated ones. When Richard Foster, a top government Medicare cost analyst, determined that adding a prescription drug benefit to Medicare would cost $551 billion over 10 years and not the $395 billion figure supplied to Congress, he was threatened with firing if he revealed the discrepancy. When, last month, an Environmental Protection Agency report on our poor national efforts at fuel economy would have brought inopportune news for the administration just before a vote on the energy bill in Congress, the report was simply pulled until after the vote.

This is all part of a pattern that is illustrative of Bush’s view of the office he holds. Bush’s arrogant swagger is more than a cowboy affectation; it is a state of mind. To Bush, being president is not an act of public service in which you are accountable to the press and the people and are limited by the power of two other governmental branches. It is the anointing of a regent for a four- or eight-year stint. That includes the ability to imprison people at will, to offer untruths without compunction as justifications for war and to spend the entire treasury (and more) without worrying about the consequences. In that now-famous press-conference question, Bush was unable to identify a single mistake he made as president, because monarchs don’t err.

BUSH ADMINISTRATION HIDES EVERYTHING

TWENTY ONE ADMINISTRATION OFFICIALS INVOLVED IN PLAME LEAK

That's right, my friends, TWENTY ONE HIGH LEVEL OFFICIALS ARE POSSIBLE TRAITORS TO THE U.S. This is chilling and heart stopping. It makes Watergate seem like a mere tiff in the playground sand box. LS

Found on Think Progress via Buzz Flash

TWENTY ONE KING GEORGE INC. INVOLVED IN TREASONGATE

10 DOWNING STREET REFUSES TO RELEASE EMAILS RELATING TO THE LEGAL CASE MADE FOR GOING TO WAR WITH IRAQ

Sounds like Blair is picking up Bush's policy of hiding everything. Of course, both Tony and W. have lots to hide, don't they now? Shall they soon be murmuring tomorrow, tomorrow and tomorrow keeps creeping into this petty pace everyday? Are they washing their hands incessantly yet? Of course, one must possess a modicum of a conscience to do that…..LS

10 DOWNIING WON'T RELEASE EMAILS

BUSH, CONTINUING TO REFUSE TO MEET WITH CINDY SHEEHAN SAYS IT'S IMPORTANT FOR HIM TO "GET ON WITH HIS LIFE."

WHAT ABOUT MS. SHEEHAN'S LIFE, KING GEORGE? LET HER EAT CAKE?

Ms. Sheehan held up a sign while Bush's motorcade sped by which read "Why do you have time to meet with donors and not with me?" LS

BUSH GETS ON WITH HIS LIFE WHILE SOLDIERS DIE

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