Friday, April 28, 2006

Dennis Hastert and the GOP in a Nutshell 

Click through to see a photo of Dennis Hastert jumping out of a hydrogen-fueled car and back into his gas guzzling SUV after a photo shoot:
Gasoline Prices on Yahoo! News Photos

Does the GOP actually do anything other than image shaping press conferences?

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Alberto Gonzales Likes the Podium. Stages Fugitive Round-Up Rather Than Just Doing Job Well 

I like seeing fugitives round up as much as the next guy, because . . . well . . . they're fugitives. However, the massive round-ups for the news camera seem to fall somewhere between political stunts, and just plain irresponsible for me. Why? Because clearly the government knew where these fugitives were in the lead-up to the round-up, so why not just grab them ASAP? For example, don't you think they could have caught this guy a couple minutes earlier:

Reginald Dozier, 39, was arrested in Belleville, Ill., at 12:01 a.m. on April 17, the first minute of the operation, for failing to register as a sex offender. Dozier had earlier been convicted of raping a girl younger than 13 and giving her gonorrhea.

I know it doesn't make for headline news stories, but I'm more interested in seeing a functioning government than Alberto Gonzales at a podium.

Just do you job, Gonzales.

More Than 9,000 Fugitives Caught in a Week - Yahoo! News
Ten years to the day after allegedly raping a 14-year-old girl, a California man was arrested in a roundup of fugitives that law enforcement officials say snared more than 1,100 sex offenders.

The concentrated search for people wanted for federal, state and local crimes "targeted the worst of the worst," Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said Thursday at a news conference announcing the results of "Operation Falcon II."

Authorities arrested 9,037 people April 17 to last Sunday in a 27-state dragnet led by the U.S. Marshals Service and timed to coincide with National Victims Rights Week. Among those apprehended were 1,102 people wanted for violent sex crimes or failure to register as sex offenders.

Hey Bobby Eberle, Could We See Some More Honest Analysis? 

Mr. Eberle, I was just wondering if they reason for a reduction in abortions could have something to do with factors OTHER than the pro-life movement's insistance on making decisions effecting other women's uteruses? Could the reason for less abortions have something to do with:

More use of contraception?

Imagine living in a world where people can have a fulfilling sexual life outside of procreation! Welcome to the world preferred by the majority of Americans.

The Loft » Blog Archive » Progress in the Pro-Life Movement
A look at abortion statistics is another reason to see hope. Although a tragic 1.3 million abortions are still occurring each year, the numbers have declined steadily from the early 1990s. As Rod D. Martin notes in America: Choosing Life?, “Vast numbers who were “pro-choice” before the partial-birth abortion debate have come to see the pro-life light, and — for the first time since Roe — a clear majority of America’s women reject the idea of a legal “right” to kill one’s own child.”

So it's quite possible that the results you reported had absolutely NOTHING to do with the pro-life movement's actions. So, be sure you understand what influenced the numbers before you draw irrational conclusions for your readers.

Show your readers some respect by giving them a fair and balanced analysis of the news.

Oh Please, Linda Chavez. Get Serious. 

Hey Linda Chavez. Quick question for ya: I wonder if the reason no one has been fired for "intelligence failings" is because the real failures in intelligence happened at the White House and in the Secretary of Defense's office where the CIA's intelligence was cherry picked in order to build a false case for war?

CIA Cleanup -- Linda Chavez -- GOPUSA
Although the CIA's intelligence failings have been well-documented in congressional reports and by the agency's own inspector general, there have been no consequences. Porter Goss, who left Congress to head the agency in 2005, has made some improvements going forward but has chosen not to make anyone pay for past mistakes or outright transgressions.

Hey, Christopher Adamo, Let's Try to Be More Honest with Readers 

Question: What's wrong with this sentence from Christopher Adamo:
Cancerous Remnants Of The Clinton Era -- Christopher G. Adamo -- GOPUSA
After presenting a vapid case before numerous grand juries who could find absolutely no fault with Delay, Democrat Prosecutor Ronnie Earl finally landed one that was willing to hand down an indictment for violation of laws that did not exist at the time that Delay was accused of violating them.

Answer: People aren't indicted for crimes that weren't crimes when they committed them.

Mr. Adamo, could you try to be a bit more honest in your reporting?

It's really amazing how crappy the content can be on GOPUSA.com. Who edits this stuff?

Global Warming Makes You Sneeze - Allergies from Pollen 

Do high pollen counts throw you into sneezing fits? If so, George Bush and Dick Cheney's energy policies may cause you more and more sneezing fits over the rest of your life, your children's lives, and many generations to come.:
Soaring Pollen Counts Spur Worst Allergy Season in Years - Yahoo! News
"I looked at the total pollen counts for this season compared to last, and, at this point, we have already reached 80-90 percent of what we saw for the entire season last year," said Albany, N.Y.-based allergy specialist Dr. David Shulan, a spokesman for the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI).

The culprit: a mild, wet winter and early spring, plus unusually warm days.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Will Tax Cuts for the Rich Fly in an America That Isn't the Land of Opportunity for All? 

Uh oh, this could be a problem for conservatives who depend on an overly optimistic American populace in order to push through tax cuts for the rich. If people assume they could one day be rich, they're more likely to find tax cuts for the richest Americans acceptible, right? But when if they don't identify with the vision of America as the land of opportunity for all?
America's rags-to-riches dream an illusion: study - Yahoo! News
America may still think of itself as the land of opportunity, but the chances of living a rags-to-riches life are a lot lower than elsewhere in the world, according to a new study published on Wednesday.

The likelihood that a child born into a poor family will make it into the top five percent is just one percent, according to "Understanding Mobility in America," a study by economist Tom Hertz from American University.

Christopher Palmeri Writes a Stupid Column on Fuel Economy 

This may be the stupidest piece of reporting I've read all week. Christopher Palmeri of BusinessWeek online wrote a column reporting on a study done by Edmunds on how you can improve your gas mileage / fuel economy. Which tips make a difference, and which do not?

How to Ease the Pain at the Pump - Yahoo! News
What can you do to ease the pinch? Start by forgetting almost everything you think you know about saving gasoline. Philip Reed, the senior consumer advice editor at car-shopping site Edmunds.com, and some of his colleagues went out to the California desert to put to the test ways consumers can save money at the pump. Their results are both surprising and helpful, as gas prices head to the stratosphere.

Sounds like an interesting read, right? Well, that is until you read Palmeri's take on things, which make it sound like the only thing you can do to improve your fuel economy is to avoid drag racing between stop lights. Apparently, he didn't bother reading the entire one page report that stated using cruise control or averaging slower speeds on the highway also significantly improve fuel economy.

Additionally, he fails to mention that Edmunds has other reports on their site that cite actual studies by the US Department of Energy showing signficant gas mileage improvements from:

1. Regular Maintenence: 10% improvement
2. Tires inflated: 3.3% improvement (or, should we trust two guys in the desert's report over the DOE?)
3. Removing excess weight: 1-2%
4. Don't Drive Agressively: 7% (the one mentioned)
5. Use highest geat possible.
6. Use Cruise Control: Mentioned in report Palmeri cites, but failed to mention.
7. Keep Car Clean: 7%
8. Avoid Idling: (the other one mentioned)
9. Avoid air conditioning at low speeds (Palmeri dismissed this one)
10. Combine Your Errands: Too obvious to mention?

Maybe the study Palmeri cited wasn't precise enough to measure a 1-2% difference? It clearly takes energy to move mass. Who doesn't understand this? Just think how much energy we could save if President Bush went on prime time television and said, "I ask all of you to go to your cars and take out all the crap you don't need." That's a LOT of crap, translating to a LOT of energy savings.

John Hinderaker on Drudge on Air America and Liberal Media 

If there's one thing you can count on at Power Line Blog, it's regurgitation of right-wing crap with no analysis. Take this for example:
Power Line: Liberals Tune Out
The Drudge Report notes that left-wing media aren't faring too well at the moment. Crashing the Gate, by Markos Moulitsos of the Daily Kos, has sold an astonishingly low 3,630 copies, according to Nielsen's Bookscan. And Air America's already dismal New York ratings have plummeted another 30%.

Can anything be learned from Drudge's data? Well, compare it to Amazon's top sellers list, where the top-25 include the following books that may be considered left or right leaning:

Left - How Would a Patriot Act? - #1
Left - American Theocracy - #13
Right - The Fair Tax Book - #18
Left - Cobra II - #23
Left - Crashing the Gate - #25

So, you'd think a post talking about how poorly left-wing media and books are doing would reflect how well right-wing media and books are doing, right? Yet the only book that I'd consider a right-wing book in the top-25 happens to be related to the tax code in the month of April. By the way, my definition of left-wing books in the above example is books critical of the current administration. As I understand the right-wing definition of liberals, anyone who isn't a Bush administration apologist like the guys at Powerline Blog is a liberal.

And it ignores the TV ratings of Sunday talk shows where FOX News Sunday once again came in last among networks:

Tim Russert hits ratings milestone

"Meet the Press" was seen by just over 4 million people this week, according to Nielsen Media Research. CBS' "Face the Nation" was second with 2.9 million, and ABC's "This Week" had 2.8 million. "Fox News Sunday" had 1.3 million, Nielsen said.

Here's an interesting tidbit from the same AP article:

Russert said he's been stymied lately in seeking appearances by some key officials, among them Vice President Cheney, who has been interviewed recently by Brit Hume on Fox News Channel and on ABC News' "Nightline." Also on Russert's current wish list is Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, who has appeared recently on conservative talk radio, and Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Cheney and Rumsfeld, unlike Hillary Clinton, are the people responsible for the disasterous war that's led to the deaths of thousands of US troops, tens of thousands or Iraqi civilians, and hundreds of billions of dollars in borrowed money. They're tough enough to send our soldiers to war, but not tough enough to answer questions on Meet the Press with Tim Russert.

I'd provide some analysis of the radio ratings except the Power Stooges, John Hinderaker, cited the Drudge Report for his story and neither Hinderaker or Drudge bothered linking to the study they reported on.

It really is amazing how little respect John Hinderaker and Drudge have for their readers.

John Hinderaker has added two updates to his post. Neither of them showing any more respect for his readers. For a look at how blindly the right-wing regurgitates illogical crap like this, check out this post by Glenn Greenwald.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Wall Street Wants Democratic Fiscal Responsibility Back 

Times, they are a changin':

Daily Kos: Midday Open Thread
Democrats outstripped Republicans in 2005 fundraising on Wall Street (!), according to Bloomberg. The money quote (a little pun there):
"Wall Street wants change" on issues such as the Iraq war and the budget deficit, said James Torrey, chairman of the Torrey Funds, which manages about $1 billion. "I'm finding people who are registered Republicans who are saying to me, 'what can I do to help?'"

Bush Kicks Off Driving Season by Suspending Environmental Standards on Gas 

What a great way to kick off the driving season:
AMERICAblog: Because a great nation deserves the truth
Bonanzas for the oil industry all around. They get outrageous profits and, thanks to their President, a big break on environmental controls:
President Bush on Tuesday ordered a temporary suspension of environmental rules for gasoline, making it easier for refiners to meet demand and possibly dampen prices at the pump.

What good are environmental regulations if you don't enforce them when they're most needed?

What's next? Suspending enforcement of votiing regulations on election day to make it easier to meet demand? WTF!

Joe Mariani Sounds like a GOP Basher to Me 

Joe Mariani has an interesting column today in GOPUSA where he comes across as a massive GOP pork barrel spending apologist. Remember when the GOP touted themselves as being fiscally responsible? LOL.

Liberal 'Budget Hawks' or Vultures? -- Joe Mariani -- GOPUSA
But back to the new Budget Hawk game. It's the best way Liberals have come up with to undermine support for the war in Iraq.

Yeah, how dare anyone question the costs of this unnecessary, pre-emptive war on a country with no weapons of mass destruction. You tell em, Joe.
Realizing that most Americans outside of Hollywood abhor wasteful spending, the anti-war crowd often pretends to be horrified by the amount of money spent by the Federal government on Iraq.

Yeah, those darn liberals and their sneaky pandering to "most Americans" who "abhor wasteful spending." How dare they play to American's emotional attachment to fiscal responsibility?
"Do you know how much Bush's war in Iraq is costing?" they demand to know. "Hundreds of millions a day!" It's always "Bush's war," though Congress voted to send troops to Iraq, and keeps nailing slabs of pork to every defense-related bill.

Yeah, how dare they call it Bush's war when it was also authorized by the GOP controlled congress who "keeps nailing slabs of pork to every defense-related bill." It's clearly the minority Democratic party's fault all of this is happening, right?
Still, it's all a pose, a calculated outrage designed to reduce support for the war among more fiscally conservative Americans.

Isn't it interesting that Joe Mariani thinks Bush is losing support for his war (uh, and the GOP's war) because Democrats are speaking out about the costs?

Hey Joe Mariani, do you honestly believe that fiscally conservative Americans of ANY political persuasion would be against a justifiable war?

Things don't get much better for Mariani's column after that. For example, he tries to justify a WARbased on the cost being not much higher than the military costs of NOT fighting one:

To complain that keeping the American military -- or, at least, about ten percent of it -- in Iraq costs X number of dollars per day is to ignore the fact that the military isn't cheap to keep home, either. Troops still have to be paid, fed, clothed, housed and trained; equipment still has to be upgraded, repaired and replaced.

Seriously, he really said that. Maybe we should just start randomly firing Nukes at other countries too, since the cost of launching nukes isn't that much higher than storing them?

It's amazing how poor the writing can be on GOPUSA. This particular article was FEATURED in their newsletter! Don't they have any respect for their readers?

Hey Michelle Malkin: Start Reading Doug Patton's Stuff 

Michelle Malkin published a video blog the other day ripping on everyone's cow-towing to China except our own president. Maybe Malkin should read up on what Doug Patton has to say about our dictator in chief's actions.

Things I Would Love To Hear My President Say -- Doug Patton -- GOPUSA
Instead, Bush apologized to this dictator, who presides over a government as evil and repressive as any that has ever existed on this planet. Meanwhile, the protestor was arrested for disturbing the peace. Granted, the president did issue an official statement that China should allow greater freedom of worship, but he also assured the Chinese Communists that he supports their despotic claim over the lives of the free people of Taiwan.

Bush Lays Out Winning Strategery for Iraq 

Um, My President, did terrorists use Iraq as a haven BEFORE we turned the country into a lawless region it's become under your watch?
Bush: No terror haven in Iraq -- GOPUSA
U.S. President George Bush told a California audience Monday that terrorists want to use Iraq as a haven, but he has strategy to win the war.

"We've got a strategy in place to achieve victory," Bush said.

We have a strategy to achieve victory? Awesome, let's hear about it!

The president did not give the specifics of the strategy, other than standing by the new government in Iraq.


Next time, can we have a winning strategery BEFORE we invade a country? Or, find ways to avoid invading other countries? I like to call it diplomacracy.

Bush administration lied about reason for firing CIA agent last Friday, wasn't because she leaked about CIA prisons  

Team Bush: Incompetent or Evil? This one stores a 9 for imcompetence on getting their story straight, and an 10 for firing someone 10 days before retirement.

This smells VERY VERY rotten. AMERICAblog: Because a great nation deserves the truth
They fired this woman ten days before she was due to retire. Then they lied about why. Sounds to me like this was one more bit of retribution by George Bush against a woman whose expert analysis of the facts didn't toe the Bush pro-war line.

The CIA is not admitting that they didn't fire her for the reason they previously stated:

A lawyer representing fired CIA officer Mary O. McCarthy said yesterday that his client did not leak any classified information and did not disclose to Washington Post reporter Dana Priest the existence of secret CIA-run prisons in Eastern Europe for suspected terrorists.

The statement by Ty Cobb, a lawyer in the Washington office of Hogan & Hartson who said he was speaking for McCarthy, came on the same day that a senior intelligence official said the agency is not asserting that McCarthy was a key source of Priest's award-winning articles last year disclosing the agency's secret prisons.

Monday, April 24, 2006

10 Reasons Why Gay Marriage is Wrong 

best of craigslist : 10 reasons why gay marriage should be illegal
10 reasons why gay marriage should be illegal

Date: 2005-10-06, 12:53PM PDT

10 Reasons Why Gay Marriage is Wrong

01) Being gay is not natural. Real Americans always reject unnatural things like eyeglasses, polyester, and air conditioning.

02) Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.

03) Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.

04) Straight marriage has been around a long time and hasn't changed at all; women are still property, blacks still can't marry whites, and divorce is still illegal.

05) Straight marriage will be less meaningful if gay marriage were allowed; the sanctity of Britany Spears' 55-hour just-for-fun marriage would be destroyed.

06) Straight marriages are valid because they produce children. Gay couples, infertile couples, and old people shouldn't be allowed to marry because our orphanages aren't full yet, and the world needs more children.

07) Obviously gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.

08) Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire country. That's why we have only one religion in America.

09) Children can never succeed without a male and a female role model at home. That's why we as a society expressly forbid single parents to raise children.

10) Gay marriage will change the foundation of society; we could never adapt to new social norms. Just like we haven't adapted to cars, the service-sector economy, or longer life spans.

Permanent Link for this Post | Posted by Ed Kohler @ 2:25 PM | | | Blogger Comments (0)

Michelle Malkin - Hotair - It's not just China Censoring People, Michelle 

Michelle Malkin kicked off her new video blog, Hotair.com with stories about censorship in China, including swipes at Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft, for their compromised positions they've taken with the Chinese government: Hot Air » Blog Archive » Kowtowing to China.

Malkin even mentions the now famous Wenyi Wang, who burst out in protest during Hu Jintao's speach at the White House last week. However, she didn't mention that the United States of America censored Ms. Wang right in front of President Bush, who apologized for Ms. Wang's expression of free speech on the White House lawn.

Protester Yells at Hu; Bush Apologizes
In a surprise outburst that cast a diplomatic shadow, a screaming protester confronted President Bush and Chinese President Hu Jintao and interrupted the welcoming ceremony on the White House lawn Thursday. Bush later apologized to the Chinese leader.

On the technology side of things, Malkin also failed to bring up the fact that AT&T is handing over ALL of the electronic communications going across their wires to the US Government. Yes, THAT AT&T, and yes THAT US Government.

Permanent Link for this Post | Posted by Ed Kohler @ 12:12 PM | | | Blogger Comments (0)

Leaking the Truth vs. Manipulative Lies for War 

It seems to me that leaking the TRUTH is something close to whistleblower status, while leaking lies to justify destroying a country is just plain illegal.
Dems. call White House on their leak hypocrisy
Dems. call White House on their leak hypocrisy
by Joe in DC - 4/24/2006 09:47:00 AM

Even John Kerry can articulate the Bush team's hypocritical double standard:

Then drawing a parallel to the Plame case, Kerry said that with McCarthy, "you have somebody being fired from the CIA for allegedly telling the truth, and you have no one fired from the White House for revealing a CIA agent in order to support a lie. That underscores what's really wrong in Washington, D.C."

So this administration punishes people for blowing the cover on secret torture prisons, but has no problem lying about our intelligence concerning Iraq (and now Iran). That's messed up.

Permanent Link for this Post | Posted by Ed Kohler @ 11:52 AM | | | Blogger Comments (0)

Sunday, April 23, 2006

John Hinderaker Doesn't Understand Democrats 

John Hinderaker clearly doesn't understand that Democrats are the party that loves the troops, the party that honors them upon their return from service, the party that fights for body armor and properly armored vehicles, the party that doesn't put troops in harm's way unless there is an imminent threat to our nation, and the party that doesn't forget about veterans.

Power Line: Tennessee Welcomes Its Soldiers Home
Tennessee's Governor, Phil Bredesen, seems to have made entirely appropriate comments, notwithstanding the fact that he is a Democrat:

"What a great sight this is on the street today," said Gov. Phil Bredesen as he reviewed the 2,500 members of the 278th standing in parade formation wearing their camouflage uniforms.

Bredesen said the men and women of the 278th who were deployed to Iraq for a year represent "what is the very best of our state and the very best of our nation."

"I thank you for your courage and sacrifices," the governor told the soldiers. "You left as trained citizens and you came back as warriors."

"Warriors"--not usually a part of the Democrats' lexicon.

It's really sad to see Hinderaker insinuate that Democrats are something they clearly are not. Clearly Hinderaker fails to understand the difference between supporting America's troops and supporting the actions of this war-mongering failure of an administration.

Permanent Link for this Post | Posted by Ed Kohler @ 10:26 PM | | | Blogger Comments (0)

Paul Mirengoff on Zbigniew Brzezinski 

Mirengoff take his lack of analytical skills to an entirely new level by pretending to have a better understanding of the threats posed by, and proposed military plans related to Iran than a former national security advisor:
Power Line: Still feckless after all these years
Brzezinski apparently is unable to distinguish between an invastion followed by an occupation and bombing strikes. Similarly, he can't detect the difference between a regime that indisputably had chemical weapons at one time but claimed to have destroyed them and a regime that does not yet have nuclear weapons but indisputably is working diligently to develop them, and making excellent progress.

Apparently, Mirengoff's ability to take this failed administration at its word knows no bounds.

Permanent Link for this Post | Posted by Ed Kohler @ 8:52 PM | | | Blogger Comments (0)

Baseball Stadiums are Moneymakers? 

Bill Erickson, from Crookston claims baseball stadiums are moneymakers. If that was the case, why wouldn't someone worth billions build their own stadium? Don't you think a banker knows a good investment when he sees one?

Another reason why this can't be the case is the fact that you NEVER hear a pro-stadium backer, including Twins management, local sports writers, or fans make a financial case for building the stadium. If they could they clearly would, because it would have the most sway with the city, county and state.

Instead, they stick to making emotional pleas and pathetic threats about how poor the quality of life would be for Minnesotans if we didn't have a professional baseball team. And somehow, that justifies the public expenditure of hundreds of millions of dollars?

Mr Erickson, if it's a good investment, get together the money to build the stadium yourself along with other private investors. Build it, then rent it to the Twins. Do you think it would be a good investment with your OWN money?

It's a moneymaker

My family and I have gone 600 miles round trip to the Twins games. If this spineless state government, including the governor, cannot keep the Twins in this state, I will oppose any business or farm subsidy.

The stadium makes money, period! The "overpaid players" will pay state taxes. Even the opposing teams' players (think A-Rod). I would rather support the Twins than Northwest Airlines.


Permanent Link for this Post | Posted by Ed Kohler @ 7:20 PM | | | Blogger Comments (0)

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?