June 30, 2002

There's a new sheriff in town - and he's an asshole

It's hard to know whether to laugh or to cry at U.S. President {sic} George Bush's much-awaited "vision" of Mideast peace unveiled last week, a speech so obviously crafted by special interests and driven by domestic politics that the rest of the world winced in embarrassment. Even moderate Israeli leader Shimon Peres called it a "fatal mistake."

The view abroad was captured by veteran British journalist Robert Fisk, who acidly wrote that Israeli PM Ariel Sharon, who has made six visits to Bush's White House, should be allowed to run the White House press office, to "spare the American president the ignominy of parroting everything he is told by the Israelis."

Bush, a man untroubled by deep thought or irony, had the chutzpah, as we New Yorkers say, to urge Palestinians to adopt Scandinavian-style democracy, while telling them they cannot re-elect Arafat, who was elected in a fair vote by over 80% of his people - rather better than President Bush, who slid into office thanks to court orders and voter exclusions in Florida.

As for corruption, Arafat's thieving PLO cronies look like the homeless compared to Bush's mega-crook pals at Enron who helped finance his elections.

Bush has put domestic politics and his re-election before America's proper national interests. He has undermined real peacemakers among the Israelis and Arabs. Worse, instead of playing honest peace broker in the Mideast, Bush's total identification with Israel's far right ensures America will again become the target of extremists from an increasingly enraged Muslim world - and of furious Palestinians who now have nothing to lose except the cruel mirage of a fraudulent "provisional interim" state.

- - Read more of Eric Margolis here.

'Doing it the easy way'

Mike McArdle, Democratic Underground: We've probably all known at least one person like this, the one whose whole life is devoted to the proposition that effort and accountability are to be avoided at all costs. These people are able to handle problems as long the pesky things remain simple but when things get complicated they sense immediately that they are out of their element and they leave the playing field. The amazing thing is that some people actually make it through life, some quite successfully without ever having to tough anything out or face any consequences.

So it was that a man of miniscule talent who was never called to account for poor grades, problematic military obligations, or failing businesses managed to achieve the nation's highest office. He got there specifically by avoiding all the things that the more talented, responsible people of his generation dealt with head on.

We saw this during the Florida election crisis when his father rallied planeloads of political operatives and sent them to the Sunshine state to try to seize the presidency for his little boy. But while daddies buddies finagled, stonewalled and sued, the beneficiary of all this activity retreated to his Texas ranch and spent the duration clearing brush and throwing a stick to his cleverly-named dog Spot. I mean the situation was just so icky, you know, it was all just complicated and everything. It's kind of like getting kicked out of Andover for throwing a keg party. See if Dad can fix this for you, and have him give you a call when it's time to be inaugurated.

And that is the way the little man handles every crisis he's encountered as President. - - Read more at DU!

Hazy, hot and humid. Plus one of the dogs found a magic spot* in the lawn and rolled in it, so now we can add incredibly stinky. At least it's a good day to give her a bath.

*a place where deer/bear have pooped, or where something has died and rotted.

Bush's colonoscopy comes up negative

No brain tissue was found in the presidential rectum during a scheduled exam that left vice president Dick Cheney legally in charge of our nation for over two hours. The doctor who performed the exam apologized for the lack of results promising to reschedule the president, "at his earliest convenience" for a more detailed examination to locate the missing brain tissue.

Dr. Charles U. Farley, the attending physician, went further on to explain, "It's truly like trying to find a needle in the haystack in there."

At last report the pResident was resting quietly with his blankee while dressed in his bunny-pants pajamas. - - From go3 at the BC Forum.

June 29, 2002

Quote of the Day: Mike Barnicle, to Annthrax Coulter, after reading excerpt from her new book: "Aren't you afraid that stuff like that makes you and your argument sound like a complete nutcase?"


The cleomes, scarlet runner beans, cosmos, and an accidental sunflower (a bird-seed refugee) are blooming.

We're getting a great crop of very tasty blackcaps this year!

A bluebird young'un was cooling off in the birdbath while his father looked on.

'The 9/11 Evidence that May Hang George W. Bush'

Cheryl Seal writes: "At the very least Bush allowed 9/11 to happen. But the evidence indicates his guilt involves more than just a huge intentional sin of omission – this now seems certain. So it is ulcer-fomenting to watch him, Cheney, Condoleeza Rice and their PR army try to sell America yet another Big Lie – that they had no idea such a thing as 9/11 could happen...they could never have imagined it in their wildest dreams...they had no specific warnings...there was nothing unusual about the summer 2001 warnings, etc, etc, ad nauseam. I have compiled some material that clearly shows that the above litany is blatantly, arrogantly false...."

- - Read the whole thing here .

BFEE's Lapdog Propagandists have Tantrum Over Summit Snub

The bushmoonie times writes: The Bush administration went out of its way - 60 miles out, in fact - to isolate and infuriate U.S. reporters covering the G-8 summit, sowing ill will that appears unlikely to fade anytime soon.

Frustration boiled over among reporters, who were all but shut out of a three-day meeting among leaders of eight of the wealthiest and most powerful nations in the world. Even the most mild-mannered White House correspondents were angered by a summit beset by logistical errors and lack of interest among low-level Bush staffers.

"This has been, without a doubt, the worst-run event in my experience," said a veteran White House reporter who asked not to be named. "The credibility of this administration has gone right down the tubes with this fiasco, and I venture to say they will pay mightily for their shabby treatment of the U.S. media, whose job it is to deliver to the American people the policies of their own government."

Bush spokes-tool Ari "the Liar" Fleischer briefed reporters only once during the summit.

Another reporter said the administration's treatment of the press went from bad to worse — and that Mr. Fleischer was the prime offender. "There is a certain arrogance, I think because their approval ratings are so high," the correspondent said. "That attitude poisons the relationship, and I think the press is at the breaking point. No one in the White House has credibility anymore. It's disgusting."

Awwwww, poor buttkissing babies didn't get their fawning audience with His Fraudulency! I'm sure you'll all feel better the next time our dear exaulted Emperor Snippy greets you with your accustomed nicknames...it'll be like all this never happened, you poor, poor things.

And f*ck you.

Breaking News! Bunnypants has 'resumed powers of presidency' after transferring authority to Cheney during colonoscopy, which found no abnormalities or polyps. I feel safer already.

Corrupt EPA: "Ignore Yucca Mountain"

Embattled EPA ombudsman Robert J. Martin, who was forced out by corrupt corporate lackey Christie Whitman back in April simply for doing his job, revealed that he was pressured by the EPA to stop looking into EPA's radiation standards for Yucca Mountain. Yucca is the seismologically unstable place that Bush, bowing to the nuclear industry, wants to designate as a repository for nuclear waste. Martin began investigating whether EPA's standards would adequately protect the environment and Nevadans at the request of Democratic Representative Shelley Berkley from Nevada. Perhaps the EPA put the brakes on his research for fear he'd find out the truth - that Whitman's EPA couldn't care less about protecting citizens from Yucca's radiation hazards, since Whitman's way more concerned about protecting her boss's campaign coffers.

Robert J. Martin said he clashed with an administrator over whether he had authority to look into the nuclear waste program, and EPA regional officials resisted requests for documents about hazardous materials at the Yucca site and the Nevada Test Site. Martin said he was "pressured to not look at Yucca. This I found disconcerting."

Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., said it was clear to him that "Mr. Martin was ousted because the bureaucracy of the EPA did not like what he was doing and it was retribution." - - From the Las Vegas Review, with thanks to Democrats.com.

Fraudulent Figurehead Invokes Alleged 'War' to Announce Upcoming Anal Probe

News to Wake Up By: "Tomorrow I'm going to have a colonoscopy at Camp David, it is the third such procedure I've had. The doctor recommended I have another one because the last time they found some benign polyps and so this is a routine physical examination that will be done at Camp David," Squinty the Boil-faced Bonghead gushed to reporters.

He said he wanted to be "super-cautious" about his health because the country was engaged in a war on terrorism. For security reasons he declined to say exactly what time the procedure would take place.

Give it up, you ignorant, flaming idiot. How many fundraisers have you scheduled for next week?

June 28, 2002

Today in History: 1914 - Archduke Franz Ferdinand and wife Sofia are assassinated in Sarajevo by an insane Serbian, causing the powderkeg that was Europe to erupt into World War I. Hmmmmm.

Breaking News! The Smirking Cokemonkey is to be sedated for colonoscopy, will "transfer power" temporarily to Vice President Cheney. Insert joke here! LOLOL

The political implications of the Wall Street scandals

[T]he President's personal standing is doing his party no good. When it comes to voting intentions in the congressional election, as opposed to patriotic expressions of support for the Commander in Chief, the stalemate in public opinion today is exactly the same as it was in the 2000 election.

By weakening Mr Bush, discrediting the US economic model and undermining America's moral authority, these scandals will confirm a trend which began with the Axis of Evil speech and Mr Bush's over-enthusiastic embrace of Ariel Sharon. By threatening to go to war against countries which have never attacked the United States, and boasting about his power to dispose of any political regimes not to his liking, Mr Bush has lost the respect of both America's military enemies and its allies. Now the loss of international respect for the United States is moving a step further.

America has forfeited its global military leadership by blustering against President Saddam Hussein and failing to curb Mr Sharon. It has forfeited its global diplomatic leadership by abrogating treaties on climate change and criminal justice. It has forfeited its global economic leadership by protecting its steel companies and increasing subsidies to farmers. Now America is forfeiting its global business leadership by failing to enforce proper financial practices and ethical standards. This loss of American leadership will probably be the most enduring legacy of the scandals on Wall Street. - - Read more at the Times Online (thanks to TAPPED for the link).

Would be nice to think so. Unfortunately, if the current yeah-whatever yawner over Enron is any example, the latest scandals will go absolutely nowhere in the annals of voter rage. The entire mess will turn out to be another nonevent that may get a half-hearted cry of 'partisan politics!' before crawing away and dying at the sound of 'war on terra!'. .

'Spinelessness as foreign policy'

Mr. Bush's speech on a Palestinian state must surely rank as one of the most pathetic utterances ever given by an American president under the exalted rubric of policy.

As a statement of principle, it ranks with the U.S. Supreme Court's Dredd Scott decision concerning slavery. It contains no principle, other than respect for the rights of those with power to hold others virtually as property.

Purely as a speech, it suggests Mr. Nixon's remarks about his dog Checkers and Pat's cloth coat, emotional ramblings to obscure hard (and, as it later proved, true) accusations of hidden political slush-funds. In Mr. Bush's case, the hard truth is that his stewardship over America's responsibilities in the Middle East has been disastrous.

In almost every aspect of American foreign policy, Mr. Bush, a man who during his campaign for office actually bragged about never reading the international section of the newspaper, has set back the clock many years. The Palestinians now are pretty much expected to start over, from the beginning, as though the past third of a century had not happened. Moreover, America's first court-appointed president has pretty much told them what leader they should not elect. - - Snipped from John Chuckman's article at YellowTimes, courtesy of SmirkingChimp.com.

Oooooohhh, it's shiny.....

"American journalist Gail Sheehy once described the secret of leadership as the habit of action one develops after facing the tests of a lifetime. As a person handles whatever fate throws at them, a pattern of reaction becomes clear. It amounts to the quality of a person's integrity under the onslaught of the inevitable slings and arrows. A good leader's habit of action will carry them across rough passages. A bad leader will make those passages all the rougher. A fool will lay waste to everything with a stupid look fixed to their face." - Another terrific William Rivers Pitt column here .

Looks like we have homes for Elsa and Catrina, and their mom has an appointment with the vet in a couple of weeks. :(

More Moments in Churchilliana

"Whether you're here by birth, or whether you're in America by choice, you contribute to the vitality of our life. And for that, we are grateful." - the Oaf of Office ,Washington, D.C., May 17, 2002. (Thanks to Slate.)

Oh great - there goes the stock market again

After giving the usual barely coherent soundbites in various photo-ops recently, Bunnypants is planning to devote an entire speech on the subject of corporate governance next month, an administration official said.

"The United States expects the highest of ethical behavior and truth and transparency from its corporate leaders," the irony-challenged Aunt Condo later said on CNBC. "The white-collar criminals of such corporations as Enron, Global Crossing, and Halliburton will find there is no place to hide from...was that my beeper? Excuse me..."

Is that a deranged squirrel on your head, or are you just happy to see me?

DINO crook and avant-garde hair model James Traficant faces the House Ethics Committee in a public hearing set for July 15. His 10-count description of 'alleged' congressional violations was released Thursday. They allege the Ohio sleazeball engaged in a "continuing pattern and practice of official misconduct," including acceptance of kickbacks, encouraging the destruction of evidence, defrauding the United States and filing false income tax returns.

The eight-member panel, which includes two fellow Ohio lawmakers, will hear Traficant's defense and then determine whether the charges "have been proven by clear and convincing evidence."

Blah blah blah. I'm sure Traficant will get off lightly, with just some minor noogies - after all, he's one Dem the repukes want to keep around.

It would be so much easier if their names ended with 'Clinton'

Those wacky Bush twins! They were spotted by 'multiple witnesses' in a Washington saloon, 'sucking down Budweisers and chain-smoking cigarettes' until well past midnight - but that's all off the record, of course: sources for the Washington comPost 'expressed concerns that going public about the Bush girls would be bad for their careers.' Yeah, it would be hard to file stories from the gulag. Welcome to the BFEE's Fascistan, assholes.

'the most tasteless and insensitive joke in the annals of the presidency'

Professional stand-up comedians know that Sept. 11 jokes are radioactive. Not even the bravest have tried to turn the deaths of some 3,000 people into a laughing matter. But pResident Bush has forged ahead anyway. Bush has now been telling the same, spectacularly tasteless joke to a variety of mostly Republican audiences as part of his stock stump speech for the better part of four months now.

This is its basic telling: "You know, when I was running for president, in Chicago, somebody said, would you ever have deficit spending? I said, only if we were at war, or only if we had a recession, or only if we had a national emergency. Never did I dream we'd get the trifecta."

According to the transcripts, this joke usually elicits laughter from the mostly GOP crowds to whom Bush tells it. So far, the president has told the joke on the record at least 14 times. Bush apparently decided to make it part of his stump speech, beginning with a GOP luncheon on Feb. 27. The tellings have come more regularly, and have been largely at GOP fund-raising functions.

However, the real problem with the joke is that it's a complete falsehood. Bush never told any audience, or any reporter, in Chicago that he could foresee three conditions under which deficit spending might be necessary. In fact, throughout the entire campaign, Bush had been insistent that budget surpluses would continue. Bush's story, moreover, is fundamentally false as a purely chronological matter: Bush was already facing the certainty of deficit spending at the end of the summer of 2001, well before the attacks of Sept. 11. Some $4 trillion worth of budget surplus vanished over the spring and summer that year, and budget experts sounded the alarm about looming deficits then. The Congressional Budget Office warned Bush on Aug. 29 that Social Security funds would be needed to balance the books, forcing him to abandon a campaign promise not to use the retirement fund for other government spending. Indeed, that is just what Bush proceeded to do in his actual budget, presented in January. According to the CBO, Bush's budget plan would drain every dollar of the $527 billion surplus from the Social Security Trust Fund for the next two fiscal years even while creating a deficit. It would continue to raid the fund for varying amounts each year through 2012. Even with the fund's help, the federal budget is expected to be in deficits through at least 2005.

Most economists peg the source of these nagging deficits on Bush's tax-cut plan, the deepest portions of which loom ahead. The administration sternly denies this. Yet it's clear that while Sept. 11 may have deepened and broadened the budget-deficit problem, the administration was faced with chronic budget deficits no matter what.

And that gets to the heart of the "trifecta" joke, whose entire purpose clearly is to blame the deficit on Sept. 11 and its aftermath. It lets Bush escape any serious questions about either his failure to balance the budget or, particularly, his campaign pledge to use the Social Security Trust Fund to pay down the national debt. The national tragedy gave him unparalleled political cover for his administration's failures - and Bush has displayed no hesitation whatsoever about using it. Indeed, it has become his favorite joke. - - snipped from David Neiwert at MSNBC. Don't forget to vote for this article at their website!

Quote of the Day: 'Now it's official. Bush is Ariel Sharon's bitch.' - Ted Rall

June 27, 2002

The furnace guy just left, and there's another big storm coming in!

Finally back at work after being out sick for three days, sleeping, mostly.

That thunderstorm we had yesterday afternoon was a doozy - a bolt of lightning struck the rock wall very close to the house, and it sounded like a machine-gun being fired. I even had my hands covering my ears. Found out later that somehow it blew out the hot-water heater. Like I wasn't cranky enough. The furnace guy showed up around 1:00, and he's still here.

Did I mention one of the dogs has grown a second evil head? She's developed a fatty tumor on her shoulder that oozes and stinks to high heaven. The vet says it can be removed with no problem, except for the fact that she's old and may not tolerate the anaesthesia. I offered to use tylenol pm and some fishing line, but the BF said forget it.

The Pledge of Allegiance controversy: when I first heard about this yesterday, in my stupor, I thought those jackasses on the 'supreme' court had finally lost their marbles. I said to myself, 'why don't they just substitute some damn nazi oath and be done with it, that's the way this country's going anyway'. Turned out to be the decision of some politically-correct "atheist lawyer"* in San Francisco. And while I'm close to converting to Druidism, I've got enough things to be pissed off at these days - whether or not "under God" is unconstitutional barely registers on the FU Meter. I'm a bit more concerned with Asscroft possibly keeping a list of my amazon.com purchases or monitoring my website for subversive activities. Hey John! I have calico cats! Bwwaaahahahahaha. So no, I can't get too worked up over this except to say it's more more example of how f*cked up everything's gotten. Like the Toxic Tinhorn blaming the wildfires out West on environmentalists, for petessakes. I could go on:
*Senate President Pro Tem Robert Byrd, D-W.Va

Daddy's Widdle Dumbass, Unscripted:

Napoleon Bonehead said he would use "diplomatic pressure" to get the Palestinians to reject terrorism, but added: "I'm never ruling out military. All options are available."

A senior Bush administration official said the United States would not "interfere" in Palestinian elections "if they're free and fair." (Here we go again...) But the official said "the consequences are clear" should the Palestinians rebuff the United States by rallying behind Arafat and his policies. - - From Yahoo News.

More Moments in Churchilliana

"If people are interested in peace, something else has got to happen. If their leadership is compromised by terror, we won't be on the path to peace. I've got confidence in the Palestinians, when they understand fully what we're saying, that they'll make right decisions as to how we get down the road for peace," - the Oaf of Office , Calgary, Canada, 6/26/02.

"Listen, I can assure you we won't be putting money into a society which is not transparent and corrupt. And I suspect other countries won't, either." - ditto.

Hardly-elected U.S. pres tries to 'shape up' other democracies

In Bush World, the one in which he is never wrong, he won the election in 2000. His first few months in office, he said so with eerie frequency: "Since I was elected," "That's why the people voted for me," "After I won the election," etc. I thought it was a Rove-ian ploy to gradually brainwash us into forgetting that Al Gore got 540,000 more votes than Bush.

But as often happens in such cases, Bush most likely convinced himself, too. That's why he didn't see how odd it looks for him to demand that the Palestinians get rid of Yasser Arafat. Arafat got 88 percent of the vote in an election in which 80 percent of the voters turned out. The election was monitored by international observers, among them Jimmy Carter, who found fewer irregularities than later turned up in Florida.

This is the second time Bush has displayed indifference to the minor matter of democracy. After the administration tried to abet the abortive coup against President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela, a "high administration official" was quoted as saying: "(Chavez) was democratically elected. Legitimacy is something that is conferred not just by a majority of the voters, however." Chavez won his election by 60 percent. It's kind of hard to convince people we're working for democracy and freedom when we do things like this. - - Snipped from Molly Ivins' column.

"an abdication of responsibilty by a president eager to shift the blame"

Once again aides escorted President Junior to a White House podium amid excited speculation. Wearing his determined face, with only the faintest apprehension in his eyes, managing for once not to look like a fraternity boy who'd borrowed his older brother's clothing to appear before a traffic judge, Bush read his much-anticipated, twice-delayed address on the Middle East.

If ever a presidential speech was written by committee, this was it. Ever since the latest sickening wave of Palestinian suicide bombings and Israeli reprisals forced Bush to quit pretending that the crisis would magically pass if he ignored it or blamed his predecessor, we've been reading reports like this one in the Chicago Tribune: "Inside the White House...a struggle over emphasis and nuance has played out between pro-Israel hard-liners, including Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, who would grant no concessions to the Palestinians until all terror attacks cease, and Secretary of State Colin Powell, who has aired the Arab argument that Palestinian desperation over the deferred dream of a state is fueling the violence."

As ever, the missing factor in the equation is President Junior, tacitly understood to have no informed opinions worth reporting, although news organizations expecting future White House access won't say so. - - Read more of Gene Lyons here.

'Arafat calls for democratic elections in the United States'

Palestinian Authority President Yasir Arafat stunned the world yesterday by demanding that the United States hold democratic elections for a new Chief xecutive before it attempts to continue in its role as broker between Israel and Palestine.

"Mr. Bush is tainted by his association with Jim-Crow-style selective disenfranchisement and executive strong-arm tactics in a southeastern province controlled by his brother," said Mr. Arafat, who was elected with 87% of the vote in 1996 elections in the West Bank and Gaza, declared to be free and fair by international observers, including former U.S. president Jimmy Carter. "Our count shows that he would have lost the election if his associates hadn't deprived so many thousands of African-Americans, an oppressed minority, of the right to vote. He is not the man to bring peace to the Middle East."

Hugo Chavez, elected president of Venezuela with 62% of the popular vote, concurred with Mr. Arafat. Chavez has long been a victim of Bush's anti-democratic attitude, as the Bush administration funneled hundreds of thousands of dollars through the "National Endowment for Democracy" to anti-Chavez forces and reportedly gave the go-ahead for an attempted military coup by those forces. "After it was over and I was back in power," said Chavez, "his administration actually told me 'legitimacy is not conferred by a majority vote.' Unless, of course, it's a majority of the Supreme Court. I respect the local traditions, however quaint, of the United States, but he hardly sets the best example for the Middle East, does he?" - - Rahul Mahajan at Counterpunch.

Kudos to Eric Alterman:

"George Bush had just given his Middle East speech, in which he spinelessly caved into every one of Ariel Sharon's demands, thereby ensuring nothing but more bloodshed and misery for both sides, and here's who the allegedly anti-Israel "Communist News Network" thought provided a balanced and expert stable of commentators:

RICH LOWRY, THE NATIONAL REVIEW: "I think it was a marvelous speech."
CARL JEFFERS, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: "I applaud the president for staying engaged and continuing so."
ROBERT NOVAK, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: "I don't think that the Israel government could be happier with that speech if it were written by Prime Minister Sharon's people.
RA'ANAN GISSIN, ADVISER TO ARIEL SHARON: (What do you expect he said?)
REP. TOM DELAY (R-TX), HOUSE MAJORITY WHIP: Well, I think president has once again shown incredible leadership."

Here's my question: Has Hell frozen over? Six speakers and Robert Novak as the voice of reason? Just how pathetic has CNN become? Isn't Pat Robertson the guy who said that the 9/11 attacks were God's revenge on America because of abortionists and the ACLU? What is an anti-American nutcase doing as an analyst of the Middle East? Who is Carl Jeffers and why is he considered a match for the editor of America's most right-wing opinion magazine. Where was the Palestinian spokesperson to balance Gissin? And where was the liberal lawmaker to balance the extremist DeLay?

I suppose it's too much to ask to imagine the CNN might have thought to consult, um, someone familiar with the history and politics of region who could speak to the likelihood of his plan achieving any success whatever. Nahhh."

Fair and balanced, if you're a neonazi. They spew propaganda and take away the burden of deciding for yourself! Hey, everything's perfect in Bushistan!

In Other News:

Israel Building Fence Around West Bank
Will become first gated community that accepts Jews.

Bush Gives CIA OK to Covertly Kill Hussein
Iraqi leader "must not know of our plans," he tells country.

Most Americans Enjoy Being Surveyed
85% prefer it to being poked in the eye with a sharp stick.

People Choose Aqua as New M&M Color
Supreme Court overrules vote, declares purple the winner.

And from News of the Weird:
According to Spanish biologist J.J. Negro (Estacion Biologica de Donana), reporting in the journal Nature in April, male Egyptian vultures compete for females on the basis of how brightly yellow the males' faces are, and that brightness varies directly with the amount of excrement they eat. Cartenoids in dung produce the yellow around the vultures' eyes, and only the strongest vultures can safely eat enough bacteria-laden feces to get a rich color. [Nature 416 (2002)] This may help explain the weird complexion of so many reporters in the WH press pool.

And?? You gotta problem with that?? South Korea's Supreme Court overturned theft convictions (31 incidents, about $2,400 worth of merchandise) agaiinst a woman on the ground that she was menstruating, which, according to one justice, made her like a "mentally deranged patient," "unable to control her impulses" [Korea Herald, 6-7-02].

June 26, 2002

Got the last of the kittens last night. They're all downstairs running roughshod through my houseplants, beating the crap out of each other.

Bunnypants washes hands of MidEast Crisis with latest do-nothing photo-op

"The president has planted the seeds for peace, and now it's up to the parties to nurture those seeds and grow them," WH spokes-tool Ari "the Liar" Fleischer said.

"We could have done without the speech," one Arab diplomat in Washington said. "This speech was like putting salt on an open wound. It will create havoc. Everything could have been done more subtly."

Bush's call for new leaders "not compromised by terror" received a cool response from the United Nations and European officials, as well. UN Secretary General Kofi Annan warned that radical leaders from the Islamic group Hamas could emerge in Arafat's stead. British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw and others said they would work with Arafat if he were reelected in national elections expected as early as next year. - - Snipped from
The Boston Globe.

"I laid out the conditions that I thought were necessary. I called on all parties in the region to assume the proper responsibilities," Emperor Snippy whined. "Now I can go back to my comic books!"

Ari the Liar added Tuesday: "If the parties [in the Middle East] want to find a way out of the violence, they need to heed his call." (?!?!?! This is a joke, right??!)

"Those who dreamed that the president's speech would spark new hope had their dreams dashed," Israel's largest newspaper, Yediot Aharonot, said Tuesday. "Bush proposed a peace process and buried it with his own words. Even Arafat's opponents will come to his defense in the face of the American tyranny." From The Los Angeles Times.

George Bush's statement on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict cannot accurately be termed a new policy. Nor is it a plan in any meaningful sense, certainly not a substitute for the Oslo process. It does not even furnish a road-map towards the longed-for ceasefire and a resumed dialogue. Mr Bush's speech does not represent the long-awaited, post-Clinton re-engagement of the US in Middle East mediation. On the contrary, by making a series of impracticable and unrealistic demands of the Palestinians while accepting without question the numbingly destructive policies of Ariel Sharon's government, it ends any remaining pretence of US impartiality.

After 18 months of dilly-dallying in the Middle East, and an interminable internal administration debate, Mr Bush has failed to rise to the challenge or even, it would seem, to comprehend its true nature. No peacemaker he, and no statesman either.

Mr Bush provides no tools for the job. His secretary of state, Colin Powell, has put off plans to visit the region. No special US envoy has been charged with pursuing Mr Bush's ideas. The peace conference promoted by Mr Powell is indefinitely postponed. There is no timetable and, crucially, no immediately persuasive incentive for extremists to stop the daily killing. The conclusion must be that Mr Bush and his senior advisers, excluding the hapless Mr Powell, do not actually expect any progress and hope effectively to freeze the conflict on Israel's terms while absolving the US of Arab blame.

Sad to say, with his vapid talk of a "vision", Mr Bush has created a vacuum, confused the issues, ducked responsibility, and set back the cause of peace. Forget Mr Arafat for a moment. Americans and Israelis also deserve better leaders. Snipped from The Guardian.

Ha - the bushmoonies' panties are in wads over Katie Couric's interview with Ann 'the man" Coulter. Here's what set them off: "You've been called everything from a pundit extraordinaire to a right-wing tele-bimbo," began Couric. I guess the part where Annthrax likened Ms Couric to Eva Braun was OK with them.

Thunderstorm coming in!! Be back later.

June 25, 2002

Another thunderstorm coming in!!

Another list of Bushisms! Here's a look:

"I will have a vice president who can become the president...I will have a vice president that agrees with my policy. I'm going to have a vice president that likes me."
-- Michigan debate, Jan. 11

"In order to make sure there's not this kind of federal -- federal cuff link, the federal structure on programs, there needs to be flexibility at the state level." -- Education speech, March 30

"I complain when I get overworked. I'm insistent that they [schedule breaks]. Now two hours are built in during each day for exercise... There are some moments when I've just been fortunate to have made it through the day without making a mistake or something." -- Newsweek, Feb. 28 edition

(Thanks to BuzzFlash)

Astronmy Picture of the Day: the Happy Face Crater on Mars:

Explanation: Even Mars can put on a happy face. The Martian crater Galle has internal markings reminiscent of a smiley face symbol. Such markings were originally discovered in the late 1970s in pictures taken by the Viking Orbiter. A large meteor impacted the Martian surface to form the crater. Conventional wisdom holds that the markings inside the crater are placed by chance by natural processes. The Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) spacecraft currently orbiting Mars took the above picture.

Yesterday I brought in two of the three kittens - the third one (in the picture above) vamoosed into an old woodchuck hole. Egon and Elsa are playing tag in the flowerpots right now, and Jaffa (the 2-year-old) is showing them the best planters to dig in. I brought Merlin upstairs to introduce him to some of the other critters, and we spent a good ten minutes screaming at each other: "brawk! brawk! brawk!", "Merlin, shut the hell up! Quiet!!" Yeesh.

Paul Krugman: The Reality Thing -

President George H. W. Bush once confessed that he was somewhat lacking in the "vision thing." His son's advisers don't have that problem: they have a powerful vision for America's future. In that future, we have recently learned, the occupant of the White House will have the right to imprison indefinitely anyone he chooses, including U.S. citizens, without any judicial process or review. But they are rather less interested in the reality thing.

For the distinctive feature of all the programs the administration has pushed in response to real problems is that they do little or nothing to address those problems. Problems are there to be used to pursue the vision. And a problem that won't serve that purpose, whether it's the collapse of confidence in corporate governance or the chaos in the Middle East, is treated as an annoyance to be ignored if possible, or at best addressed with purely cosmetic measures. Clearly, George W. Bush's people believe that real-world problems will solve themselves, or at least won't make the evening news, because by pure coincidence they will be pre-empted by terror alerts.

I think that most commentators missed the point of the story about Mr. Bush's commencement speech at Ohio State, the one his aide said drew on the thinking of Emily Dickinson, Pope John Paul II, Aristotle and Cicero, among others. Of course the aide's remarks were silly — but they gave us an indication of the level of sycophancy that Mr. Bush apparently believes to be his due. Next thing you know we'll be told that Mr. Bush is also a master calligrapher, and routinely swims across the Yangtze River. And nobody will dare laugh: just before Mr. Bush gave his actual, Aristotle-free speech, students at Ohio State were threatened with expulsion and arrest if they heckled him.

June 23, 2002

"this increasingly incompetent strategist"

Robert Fisk at The London Independent:

George Bush Junior gave up last week. After all the blustering and grovelling and the disobeyed instructions to Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and all the hectoring of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and all the "visions" of a Palestinian state, the President threw in his hand. There will be no Middle East peace conference in the near future, no serious attempt to halt the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians, not a whimper of resolution on the region's tragedy from the man who started the "war for civilisation", the "war on terror", the "endless war" and, most recently, the "titanic war on terror". Mr Bush, his ever more incomprehensible spokesman Ari Fleischer vouchsafed to us last week, "has come to some conclusions". And - this really took the biscuit - "when the President determines the time is right, he will share it".

'Who the hell are you to tell me what I can and can't draw?'

Andrew Buncombe at The London Independent:

They are largely black and white (and read all over) but George Bush wants to colour them red, white and blue.

Nine months after the attacks of 11 September, leading American political cartoonists say they are under intense pressure to conform to a patriotic stereotype and not criticise the actions of Mr Bush and his "war on terror". Those who refuse to bend to such pressure face having their work rejected, being fired or even publicly humiliated by the President's press secretary.

Last month the veteran TV anchor Dan Rather sparked controversy when he said the patriotism engulfing the country had stopped the media asking difficult questions of America's leaders, and admitted he personally was guilty of such self-censorship. Now cartoonists, often the most biting political commentators of all, say they are feeling the same pressures.

[I]n the aftermath of 11 September, free thinking is under threat. Many cartoonists say that for the first few days after the attacks, their natural reaction was to produce work that expressed little more than shock, outrage and anger. But it soon became apparent that the emerging patriotism was developing a political agenda, with anyone who merely questioned the government or its agenda being deemed unpatriotic.

Ed Vulliamy at the UK Observer writes:

The invitation arrived at the White House a few days before last week's historic World Cup victory by the United States over Mexico. It was from the Mexican President Vincente Fox, suggesting that George Bush and he watch the game together, as a gesture of friendship between neighbouring nations. The reply came, from a member of Bush's staff: the President would be asleep at that hour of the night.

It mattered little, since most of his nation was likewise in slumber - but the rebuff spoke volumes to columnists and Washington DC observers about the clueless, crassly selfish quality of a President and a presidency which are suddenly lurching, rather than governing, at the apex of American power.

The campaign for November's elections to Congress and governorships nationwide kick-starts and stalls again, as real-life politics is interrupted by the latest suspiciously well-timed ' terrorist alert'. The White House message is that this is largely a Republican Party election campaign of state-by-state contests, not an endorsement of Bush's popularity.

But sources in Washington say an alarmed President and Vice-President have taken personal roles in recruiting candidates, forestalling damaging primary contests - and raising money. Most significantly, the election is being fought as an attempt to re-adopt the 'compassionate conservatism' label. A number of Republican representatives and senators have tabled Bills to that effect, but are now scrambling to avoid having them come onto the floor of the House. 'They do not dare have it on the record that they voted for their own measures, because they know that, if they do, they would probably not get re-elected,' said one Washington insider.

Meanwhile, the presidency is simply becoming less credible, after months of apparent unassailability. The President is making gaffes that are not those old 'Bushism' jokes, but seriously political. Among the current irregularities, defending his Budget plans, he insists over and over that he said on a campaign stop in Chicago in 2000 that he would countenance a deficit under three exceptional circumstances: war, national emergency and recession.

All attempts to dig out the reference have failed, including calls to the White House. Faced with a challenge to provide it, the man in charge of the Budget, Mitch Daniel, snapped: 'I'm not the White House librarian.'

Crucially, Karl Rove is tireless in his work with core Republican and Bush supporters, endlessly working the governors' mansions, the industrial and commercial interests that back the President financially and politically, and groups such as the National Rifle Association.

In the parlance of Washington, the Republicans have a word for this constituency, which slips off the tongue without regard to what it has come to mean given recent events. They call it 'The Base', which in Arabic translates as 'al-Qaeda'.

- - Snipped from here.

What the hey am I doing up at this hour??!

Reading Maureen Dowd: As I sit in my office, munching Pirate's Booty, sipping my caramel macchiato and watching a sweaty President Bush on TV extolling the glories of exercise and nutrition, I have four questions: Why is the most fitness-crazed president in the nation's history sometimes so short on stamina?

Why does someone who bench presses 185 pounds still have an aura that's more scrawny than brawny? ("The chair," one Republican moaned, "has a way of swallowing him up.") Why does the leader of the free world, a man with limitless opportunities for stimulation, seem to get really jazzed only when he can run his 6:45 miles? Does it ever occur to Mr. Bush and his aides to vacate the gym and nail down a Middle East policy?

On Thursday at the White House Fitness Expo, Mr. Bush said that exercise helped him with stress and mental agility, so he hoped it could do the same for his staff. Yet, the most striking thing about watching the president on his recent trip abroad was that he had so little stamina — especially compared with the hyperactive traveling style of his father.

After staying up with Vladimir Putin two nights until midnight, W. was exhausted and cranky in Paris. What is the point of going to bed nearly every night at 9:30 and working out maniacally if you get the wind knocked out of you so easily?

- - Snipped from her article in The NY Times .

June 22, 2002

Correction: the Smirking Cokemonkey made the above comments not at a seniors' center, but at the $2 million fund-raising dinner that followed, where donors dined on lobster, filet mignon and asparagus.

Members of Preznit Poopypants' party are criticizing him for concessions he may offer the Palestinians as part of his long-awaited speech on a Middle East peace plan. House Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., said Thursday that he ''will reserve judgment'' on the president's plan until he sees the details.

Meanwhile, Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat is prepared to accept a Mideast peace plan put forward by President Bill Clinton in December 2000, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported Friday. In an interview at his Ramallah headquarters, Arafat told Haaretz reporter Akiva Eldar that he would take the Clinton plan without changes, Eldar told The Associated Press on Friday. "I am prepared to accept it, absolutely," Eldar quoted Arafat as saying, and he endorsed the points of the plan one by one, Eldar said.

More cat pictures for Ellen!

Found the kittens at the bottom of the deck stairs this morning. It's scary when they start to roam - there are bear, cyotes, owls, and foxes around here. But I can't bring them in yet because they're still feeding off moms, who's a stray and very squirrelly.

How Bunnypants is fighting terra

"I am here to help support the Republican Party of this state and make sure your unbelievably great governor gets re-elected," the Squinting Squatter yelped at a Florida seniors' center. "Anything I can do to help Jeb stay in the governor's office, I'll do."

Those libral commie traitors, the pink tutued Democrats, squealed that Daddy's Little Doofus was mixing politics and policy on the trip, one in a series of fund-raising events in which he has raised tens of millions of dollars for his party.

Critics believe it is wrong of the 'president' to schedule small policy events when he does such political fund-raising, making the federal government pick up the tab for the travel. Presidents of both parties have long practiced the technique, and repugs fought like rabid skunks to get Bill Clinton to put an end to the practice.

"From the $100 million man, comes the $150,000 workout. Today, President Bush [sic] flew 800 miles to raise $2 million, and expects the taxpayers to pick up the $150,000 tab because he watched an eight minute workout," Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe said in a statement. "Now if you'll excuse me, I have to finish applying these sequins to Dickie Gebhardt's tights."

June 21, 2002

"Dictator-tot approval ratings continue dropping!"

PollingReport.com's Job Ratings for the Unelected Fraud have been released, and the disapproval numbers are rising. (Thanks to Demgirl at the BC Forum for the link)

I had a linguistics professor who said that it's man's ability to use language that makes him the dominant species on the planet. That may be. But I think there's one other thing that separates us from animals -- we aren't afraid of vacuum cleaners." -- Jeff Stilson

Projectile Vomiting Alert! Howard "the Whore" Fineman writes another oily, brown-colored love letter to Squinty McSquirtypants in the latest Noozeweak "exclusive". If you really need an emetic, by all means, go here and read Whoreward's list of possible successors to dick Cheney in 2004.

This is me today. I'm feeling very lizardly. Just want to bask in the late-day sun with a mojito and a cigar.

Headline of the Day: Brass Nuts Valued at a Pretty Penny.

Today in History - 1942: A Japanese submarine surfaces near the Columbia River in Oregon, and fires 17 shells at nearby Fort Stevens. Nobody is injured. It is one of a handful of attacks by the Japanese during WWII against the U.S. mainland.

June 20, 2002

MaximOnline has The 50 Worst Movies of All Time List. And though we used to call number 44: The Sound of Music "the Sound of Mucus", I always liked that movie.

Frightening editorial in the Washington Post - required reading for everyone who thinks things are hunky-dory here in Bunnypants' Fascistan:

"A court's inquiry should come to an end once the military has shown ... that it has determined that the detainee is an enemy combatant. ... [T]he court may not second-guess the military's enemy-combatant determination."

THESE WORDS were not written by some petty dictator whose kangaroo courts rubber-stamp his every whim and whose whims may include locking up citizens he regards as enemies. They were filed yesterday by the U.S. Department of Justice before the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond in the case of Yaser Esam Hamdi. Mr. Hamdi is probably an American citizen, captured in Afghanistan and currently held without charge at a military base in Norfolk. He is not a sympathetic character, but that should not obscure the extraordinary power President Bush is claiming for himself in Mr. Hamdi's case: the right to detain without trial American citizens forever with no meaningful judicial review.

{snip} If this is correct, any American could be locked up indefinitely, without a lawyer, on the president's say-so. You don't have to believe that Mr. Hamdi is innocent to see grave peril in this. The Constitution's checks and balances don't contemplate blind trust in the wisdom or good faith of the president. And the courts must not acquiesce in Mr. Bush's claim that they are powerless to ensure the lawfulness of presidential behavior. - - (Thanks to samela at the BC Forum for the link)

Headline of the Day: India Villagers Marry Off 2 Donkeys
NEW DELHI, India (AP) - The drought-plagued residents of a small village in southern India organized a ceremonial wedding for two donkeys to appease the Hindu god of rain, a news report said Thursday. Dressed up like a bride and groom, the donkeys were escorted to a temple in the village of Sakkayanayakanur in Tamil Nadu state on Wednesday. It was not reported where the honeymoon was to be spent.

Today in History:

1756 In Calcutta, 146 British prisoners are placed in a 18 foot by 14 foot cell known as "The Black Hole" by a Bengali, Siraj-ud-daula, and held there until the following morning. Of those imprisoned, 23 survived.

1893 Lizzie Borden is found innocent of giving her stepmother and father forty whacks and forty one whacks, respectively.

1993 Deputy White House Counsel Vince Foster commits suicide by pistol at Fort Marcy Park in Virginia. Bushmoonies everywhere experience orgasm, probably for the first time in their sad, pathetic little lives.


Merlin may be starting to pick up on the song melodies I've been trying to teach him, thank God. Between the two of us it really sounds like we're slaughtering small animals down there.

Jaffa walked by while Merlin was sitting with me, and Merl went "ooohh!" I asked him if he thought Jaffa was pretty, and he said "what flavor is he?" Ummmmm...orange?

I'm still blushing at the sweet write-up this site got at AMCGLTD.com. And I can't stop laughing thinking about their cat yakking story.

"In Colorado a Forest Service woman started a fire that destroyed 100,000 acres of beautiful forest. It's as though she's working for the Bush Administration." - Letterman.

Bein' prezdint is hard!

From the NY Times: "On Air Force One on Friday, Ari "the Liar" Fleischer gave reporters a preview of the Unelected Idiot's schedule, including a pitch for fitness in Orlando, a republican fund-raiser in Florida, a T-ball game on the South Lawn, a pResidential 3 Mile Run in Washington, the White House Fitness Expo and another fund-raiser at the Washington Convention Center."

Later, he will curl up in his Spiderman bunkbed with his comics, coloring books, and a glass of Ovaltine 'n' Scotch.

And from Yahoo News: The White House South Lawn will become a sports field with a soccer clinic, baseball cages and climbing wall today as exercise buff Chimpy the Squatter kicks off his drive to make Americans more fit and healthy.

The AWOL Wonderbunny launches his HealthierUS initiative bright and early at 8 a.m. on Thursday backed up by athletes including soccer player Mia Hamm of the Washington Freedom and members of the Washington Redskins football team.

The athletes will show people how to play an array of sports while health professionals will help screen guests for diseases at small booths set up on the sprawling South Lawn.

El Dorque's get-in-shape drive will include a chat on Friday with senior citizens in Orlando, Florida, about how the elderly can work out, and a "Fitness Challenge" - including foot races among his aides - on June 22 at Fort McNair in Washington.

"President Bush spent an hour on an eliptocardiac machine today. Not on the machine itself. Just learning to pronounce it." - Letterman.

Chickensh!t Ostriches at National Security Agency Full of Bullsh!t

U.S. intelligence intercepted two messages the day before the Sept. 11 attacks that indicated an event was planned the following day, but the communications were not translated until Sept. 12, anonymous government sources said on Wednesday.

The National Security Agency, which eavesdrops on communications worldwide, intercepted messages that said "tomorrow is zero hour" and "the match begins tomorrow," sources said on condition of anonymity.

"You know how many times we hear things much more serious than that? Lots of times," an official said on condition of anonymity. The messages only took on potential significance in hindsight, the anonymous official said.

Ummm, guys, I realize I'm just a paranoid conspiracist, but you think those messages on top of all the other warnings you were getting should have sent up a big blazing red flag with fireworks? Or am I being unfair here? Bite me.

And uhhh...anthrax can be good for you, because while you're in the hospital...

The Army Corps of Engineers' dumping of toxic sludge into the Potomac River protects fish by forcing them to flee the polluted area and escape fishermen, according to an internal Environmental Protection Agency document.

The document says it is not a "ridiculous possibility" that a discharge "actually protects the fish in that they are not inclined to bite (and get eaten by humans) but they go ahead with their upstream movement and egg laying."

The Corps dumps 200,000 tons of toxic sludge into the river every year in violation of the Clean Water Act and Endangered Species Act, according to the House Resources Committee.

William Colley, a retired environmental engineer who worked for the EPA for 29 years, said he was removed from leading the new permit process in 1999 after advocating eliminating the discharges.

Reported by The Moonie Times, courtesy of SmirkingChimp.com. Just WTF is wrong with Squinty the Boilfaced Bonghead's EPA????? Is is entire administration crooked???


"We are resolved to rout out terror wherever it exists to save the world from freedom!" - George W. Bush, January 31 (In a Freudian slip?)

Anyone who can see that not only does the emperor have no clothes, but that he's not even wearing underwear, with the warts on his ass in plain sight, raise your hands.

The rest of the world sees it, has seen it since the beginning of this administration, and has been trying to tell us, but not all of us are listening. Many of us don't want to hear. Anyone who reads foreign news accounts is aware that whenever George W. Gump goes anywhere in the world, there are massive demonstrations. Tens of thousands of ordinary people who clog the streets to protest the "leader of the free world". Many of the demonstrations have turned violent, with demonstrators being injured and a few killed.

[H]ow could it be that when he goes anywhere, people put their safety and lives at risk to publicly show they do not like this man and his policies? Why is it that whenever Bill Clinton goes to the same countries, thousands show up in the equivalent of a mass group hug?

From Isaac Peterson's column.

"Bush has surrounded himself with smart people the way a hole surrounds itself with a doughnut." - Dennis Miller

'But would Tocqueville have called Adam Clymer an asshole?'

Jake Tapper helps cracks the code of bushspeak: 'On the morning of June 14, on the way to a college commencement address in Columbus, Ohio, John Bridgeland, director of USA Freedom Corps, briefed reporters on a speech President Bush was about to give. It would be, according to Bridgeland, based on the works of George Eliot, Alexis de Tocqueville, Cicero, Adam Smith, Emily Dickinson, William Wordsworth, Pope John Paul II, Benjamin Rush, Thomas Jefferson and George Washington....We decided to revisit some of Bush's more famous comments - the ones destined for Bartlett's alongside his predecessor's parsing of "is" - to see if they could be bolstered by the wise men and women whose intellect he has clearly been struggling to share with us:'

So, we should have heard: "Dreams are nothing but incoherent ideas, occasioned by partial or imperfect sleep." -- Dr. Benjamin Rush, congressman, signer of the Declaration of Independence

When it came out like: "Sometimes when I sleep at night I think of [Dr. Seuss's] Hop on Pop." -- Bush at an education event in Philadelphia, April 2, 2002

We should have heard: "We hold these truths to be sacred and undeniable; that all men are created equal and independent, that from that equal creation they derive rights inherent and inalienable, among which are the preservation of life, and liberty and the pursuit of happiness ... " -- Thomas Jefferson, first draft of the Declaration of Independence, June 1776

When it came out like: "You know, the enemy, when they hit America, didn't understand us. They didn't think we were a nation that could conceivably sacrifice for something greater than ourself, that we were soft, that we were so self-absorbed and so materialistic that we wouldn't defend anything we believed in. My, were they wrong. They missed -- they just were reading the wrong magazine or watching the wrong Springer show." -- Bush, March 12, 2002

We should have heard: "If there ever are great revolutions there, they will be caused by the presence of the blacks upon American soil. That is to say, it will not be the equality of social conditions but rather their inequality which may give rise thereto." -- Alexis de Tocqueville, from "Democracy In America"

When it came out like: "Do you have blacks too?" -- Bush to Brazil's President Fernando Henrique Cardoso, March 2001 (As reported in an April 28, 2002, Estado Sao Pauloan column by Fernando Pedreira, a close friend of President Cardoso)

Read more at Salon.

June 19, 2002

The fireflies were out last night, and so were the bats. And before you go 'yuck', here: bats eat insects, pollinate flowers, and disperse seeds. Bats are not blind flying mice that that become entangled in women's hair, seldom transmit disease to people or pets, and our concerns should be no different from those we apply to other wild animals. Do not attempt to handle them, and there is little to fear (from friendsofbats.com). As long as they leave the fireflies alone, they're all right by me.

Merlin greeted me yesterday afternoon with "rock and roll!" Oh just great - I had to sing to him after that. I was trying to get through 'You Give Love A Bad Name', and he's yelling 'brawk! brawk! brawk!'...he's the most atonal parrot I've ever heard.

The kittens introduced themselves to Jaffa, my almost-2-year-old cat, by rubbing all over him. He took it very well, the big softie.

A site I've been visiting a lot lately is Scott and Ellen's AMCGLTD.com, 'Where cats, science fiction and anger come together!' Also culture, philosophy, the sciences, silly cat pics, food, space...and without the not-safe-for-work pissings & moanings of a lot of weblogs.

Scott writes, "When Seutonius describes the forum or Pliny talks about defending a case in court yesterday or Herodotus describes the pyramids, it makes you want to get up and go look at these things yourself. You have to stop and remind yourself that these people are dust, and the places they talk about are rubble. It's at that point, when you realize the things they loved, cherished, worried about, or fought for exist now only on the pages of the book you're holding, that history has truly come to life." He really makes me want to go read these guys now!

CNN airs spy-plane footage of the suspected Al-Qaeda terrorist compound, and you spot your kid's Frisbee on the roof. - Topfive.com's Number 1 Sign Your Neighbor Has a Dirty Bomb.

TAPPED has this: "BUSH COMMENCEMENT MYTHS? Brendan Nyhan of Spinsanity says that a number of liberal/left wing web outlets -- Buzzflash, Media Whores Online (MWO), and Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting -- have been taken in by exaggerated reports of actively suppressed protests at Bush's Ohio State University commencement address. (Granted, protesters were warned in advance not to protest, which may have had a chilling effect -- but the issue here is with the treatment of actual protesters who turned out.)."

Well, hell, maybe their issue is with whether or not any protesters were actually arrested, but the fact that the audience was told in no uncertain terms that they would applaud vigorously or else is quite chilling enough for me. And in this day and age, are we really to believe this spin: "In addition, we now know that the original AP report was incorrect - a later version of the story corrected the description of the announcer asking for 'thunderous' applause, which was actually requested for university President William Kirwan, not Bush"? With all the stories we've been seeing lately regarding the media fudging or 'cleaning up' anything that makes Chimpy McCowpie look even more moronical, I really think NOT.

'Bring out the booster chair for Jr.'

Geez, Alexander, don't hold back - tell us how you really feel! "How aghast that malign political genius [Nixon] would have been at the ignoramus occupying the Oval Office once fragrant with Dick's curses. What a falling off is there! From malediction to malapropism. I'm sure W's speech is less burdened by obscenity than that of the Navy vet and seasoned poker player, but this is the purity of the born-again imbecile. W. has the vocabulary of a 12-year old, though most 12-year olds have an infinitely stronger grasp of world affairs.

"Our spaniel press makes herculean efforts to pass over the fact in silence, but the fact is that George W. Bush is the laughing stock of the world, by dint of the obvious fact that his maximum level of competence was that of greeter at the ball park in Arlington."

I really recommend you read the rest here !

"the most far-fetched spin" used to burnish Bunnypants' image

"This recent trend scraped the nadir of credibility the other day when George W. Bush’s aides provided a press briefing about the sources of his graduation speech on 'volunteerism' at Ohio State University. This quite ordinary address, it seems, had been inspired by a panoply of great literary and political figures: Alexis de Tocqueville and Adam Smith, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and - to advance slightly beyond absolute cliché - Benjamin Rush, George Eliot, Emily Dickinson, William Wordsworth, Pope John Paul II, Aristotle and Cicero.

"No particular quotations were cited, and the President uttered the names of none of these worthies. But testing credulity to the utmost, his aides boldly mentioned Aristotle’s The Nicomachean Ethics, a long disquisition on virtue as dull as any book by William Bennett, though somewhat more challenging than The Very Hungry Caterpillar, that perennial Bush favorite. Somehow, Jesus didn’t make the list this time."

Joe Conason kicks butt here .

Quotes of the Day:
"Maybe the president was expounding upon the Nickelodeon Ethics." - Maureen Dowd, in the NY Times.

"Members of the Bush Administration made the rounds of the morning news programs this past Sunday in the hopes of making its proposed attack on Iraq the best-publicized super-secret attack in history." - Andy Borowitz.

SF attorney: Bush allowed 9/11 attack to happen. SF attorney death watch ensues.

Snipped from The Examiner: Stanley Hilton now figures his case is stronger because of a coalition of attorneys, victims' families and bipartisan legislators who gathered in Washington on Monday to condemn the government's lack of action in preventing the Sept. 11 attacks.

Hilton is the San Francisco attorney who filed a $7 billion lawsuit in U.S. District Court on June 3 against pResident Evil and other government officials for "allowing" the terrorist attacks to occur. Among Hilton's allegations: Bush conspired to create the Sept. 11 attacks for his own political gain and has been using Osama bin Laden as a scapegoat. Hilton said he has information that bin Laden died several years ago of kidney failure.

"I hope it will expose the fact that there are numbers of people in the government, including Bush and his top assistants, who wanted this to happen," Hilton said.

He claims the Bush misadministration ignored intelligence information, refused to round up suspected terrorists beforehand, and during the hijackings refused to disable pilot controls and switch to a ground-based remote system. He also claims the government benefited from installing a puppet Afghan government friendly to U.S. oil interests, and says Bush used bin Laden's antagonist image to create a public frenzy, which allowed the Bush administration to tighten its political grip.

You can't have a peace plan! You're still fighting!

The Unelected Ignoramus put his MidEast peace plan on hold after the 2nd suicide bombing in two days. At the WH, there is real uncertainty about what Cap'n Cowpie should say and when to say it, a senior official told the Associated Press on condition of anonymity

"And we have some concern it won't have any impact," the official said. Some jokes just write themselves.

June 18, 2002

Great images from space of the Colorado wildfires at Cosmiverse.

Angel or Alien?

"I saw Watchers in my vision, a dream vision, and behold two of them argued about me…and they were engaged in a great quarrel concerning me. I asked them: ‘You, why do you argue thus about me?’ They answered and said to me: ‘We have been made masters and rule over the sons of men.’ And they said to me: ‘Which of us do you choose?…’”

The preceding is a fragment from the Testament of Amram, a document written in Aramaic which forms part of the Qumran scrolls, more commonly known as the Dead Sea Scrolls. The entire fragment, some eight patchy paragraphs, relates a story told by Moses’ father, Amram, to his children, concerning the burden of choice: whether to serve the evil Watcher Melkiresha, a viper-faced demon, or his counterpart, the Watcher Melchizedek, who is ruler of the “Sons of Light.”

Much has been made over the last few decades of the link between the role played by the biblical Watchers and that played by UFOs and their occupants, as well as the phenomena associated with them. This order of nonhuman beings, which fell from grace on account of their transgressions with “the daughters of men,” are at the core of a current controversy. The viper-eyed Melkiresha, allegorical though it may be, is strangely reminiscent of some of the more reptilian UFO entities that have been reported in a number of encounters. The Watchers, as described in the Bible or by the Tibetan monks who discussed the topic with the Russian artist/mystic Nicholas Roerich (whose paintings of Asian hill-forts are often referred to in the writings of H.P. Lovecraft), are in essence a race of beings which have always lived in the skies and lord over humanity, reveling in intermarriage with humans. The biblical Noah, for example, was the offspring of a Watcher.

- Read more at Fate.

From FAIR: ACTION ALERT: A Changed President--or a New Repression?

The June 14 commencement address at Ohio State University was a sign of a "revived" presidency, according to Washington Post reporter Dana Milbank. "Bush basked in the adulation of 55,000 people who treated him to waves of standing ovations in Ohio Stadium as he received an honorary doctorate," according to the paper (6/15/02). "If there was a protest in the stadium, it was not visible to reporters."

There may have been no protests visible to the Post reporter, but, as other media reported, there may have been other reasons for this in addition to "adulation" for Bush. According to the Columbus Dispatch (6/15/02), students were warned ahead of time they faced arrest if they showed any signs of dissent: "Graduates had been warned during rehearsal on Thursday that they faced arrest if-- as was rumored-- some stood up and turned their backs on Bush during his speech." The warning continued on the day of the event as well, according to the Associated Press (6/14/02): "Immediately before class members filed into the giant football stadium, an announcer instructed the crowd that all the university's speakers deserve to be treated with respect and that anyone demonstrating or heckling would be subject to expulsion and arrest. The announcer urged that Bush be greeted with a 'thunderous' ovation."

ACTION: Please contact the Washington Post and ask them why attempts to stifle dissent at George W. Bush's commencement address at Ohio State University were not newsworthy.

Washington Post
Michael Getler, Ombudsman
(202) 334-7582

As always, please remember that your comments are taken more seriously if you maintain a polite tone. Please cc fair@fair.org with your correspondence.

There she was, just a floppy in the street...

On Friday Rep. Henry Waxman (D-BrassOnes) urged Government Reform Chairman Dan Burton (R-Insane) to launch a probe of the two White House aides using "government time and resources to develop a partisan analysis of Republican prospects in key House and Senate races."

Waxman, ranking member of the panel, noted that this is the type of issue that the committee spent time probing during the campaign-finance probes of the Clinton years.

From RollCall.

Botanist: "Is that a pistil in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?" - From Top5.com's Top 5 Scientist Pickup Lines

I never did look for fireflies last night. After trying to deal with the computer moving slower than John Ashcroft at an ACLU meeting I was just so fed up I went straight to bed. Even today at work the system was draaaaaaaaaagging.

The kittens are trying to climb down the deck stairs. It's almost time to bring them inside! Must start stocking up on kitty litter.

Merlin is quite the weisenheimer. He was on my knee yesterday afternoon cleaning his toes when all of a sudden he pooped and said "I left you a present!" How very thoughtful.

Insanaquarium is supposed to be adding new critters - I tried getting in at work today, but it was impossible.

"It turns out the Al Qaeda have a training camp in Florida. That may explain all the old people driving into buildings." - Letterman

Quotes of the Day:

"[L]ast week's much ballyhooed arrest of the 'dirty bomb' suspect Jose Padilla now seems, like other developments in the 'war against terror', to have been a political device of the Bush administration – designed to distract attention from US intelligence failures and solidify support behind president Bush." - Rupert Cornwell, in the Independant.

"He looks like he lost the fight...with bipedal locomotion." - MindPilot, at the BC Forum

"President Bush didn't read the global warming report, because he was too busy not reading CIA reports. 'Hey,' he says, 'if you wanted a President who reads stuff, you should have elected Al Gore.'" - Letterman

In Other News:

Martha Stewart Facing Long Prison Sentence for Insider Trading
"It's a good thing," say investigators.

Bush Has Vision for Palestinian State
Fraternity-based plan would rely on rush week, pledging, initiation pranks.

Microsoft Reports Security Flaw
Some of its software allows people to take control of their own computers.

SEC: CEOs Must Be Responsible For Their Company's Finances
Otherwise they'll be forced to resign and "spend more time with their families."

Today in History, 1815: Battle of Waterloo. Contributing to Napoleon's defeat was his inability to properly survey the battlefield due to his aggravated hemorrhoids.

Music News: Oasis opened a new world tour with a sold-out show in Lyons, France last night, premiering new tracks from their forthcoming album Heathen Chemistry. The set-list was as follows:
'F*ckin' In The Bushes'
'The Hindu Times'
'Hung In A Bad Place'
'Stop Crying Your Heart Out'
'Go Let It Out'
'Morning Glory'
'Little By Little'
'D'You Know What I Mean?'
'Cigarettes & Alcohol'
'Live Forever'
'Gas Panic!'
'She's Electric'
'Born On A Different Cloud'
'Better Man'
'Force Of Nature'
'Don't Look Back In Anger'
'My Generation'

June 17, 2002

The Notify thingie is now up, in the left-hand border - somebody pleeeeeeease try it so I can tell if it works. And there's a poll over on the right, people!! I'm starting to think I'm just talking to myself...maybe I should bring Merlin up here and we can continue our Wolf Blitzer insult-a-thon.

Netscape is acting like a complete tool tonight.

Repuke Charged in Florida with Indecent Exposure!!

Rep. Keith Westmoreland of Tennesee was arrested and charged with five felony counts of indecent exposure during a trip to Florida last week, an official confirmed Monday.

A sergeant at the Walton County Sheriff's Department said Rep. Westmoreland was arrested last week and accused with exposing himself at a Sandestin, Fla., hotel. The sergeant, who declined to give his name, would not provide further details.

Nashville television station WSMV-TV, citing the arrest report, reported Monday night in a copyright story that Westmoreland allegedly exposed his genitals to children in a pool and a hot tub.

The report showed that children reported on three separate days that Westmoreland showed them his genitals, including one girl who claims he exposed himself to her at the pool and later at the hot tub, while staying at the Hilton hotel at Miramar Beach.

Westmoreland, R-Kingsport, did not return a message left by The Associated Press on his answering machine Monday night.

- Found at the bushmoonie site, prolly posted by some commie librul traitor.

Does anyone else have a cat who looooves the toilet bowl being flushed? Who races you into the bathroom in anticipation and stares at you meowing, practically pawing you off the seat, then stands on the rim, watching until there's no more motion?


How'd it get to be Monday already?!

Tonight's mission is to look for fireflies. We should be able to start seeing them anytime now.
The insane sparrow living by the veggie garden finally found a mate, so we won't be hearing his incessant peeping anymore.
There were two sightings of a big female wild turkey in the front yard this past week. Now if I could only lure her within shovel range.....(only kidding).

It's getting to be almost impossible to do anything on the computer on weekends - it was moving so slowwwwwwwwly yesterday that I kept getting those timed-out messages for all my favorite sites. I finally gave up in disgust and went off to play with the kittens and with Merlin - we did so much singing that I went hoarse. His favorites were "Shall We Dance" from The King and I and "I Wanna Be Sedated" by the Ramones, which means I have to find a truly offensive song for him to learn in case I ever get company. Suggestions are welcome - this is what I have so far:

1. "Springtime for Hitler", from The Producers
2. "Merry F*cking Christmas", from South Park
3. "Big Balls", by AC/DC

I'll be adding a notification thingie as a try-out. If you'd like to get a message when the site is updated, please sign up!

Actual Letter to the Editor:

"Bad Guys as Needed. How convenient. Whenever the heat is on this Bush administration, it can just dip into the pool of hundreds of detainees and pull out some shlub to be crowned "Evildoer of the Month." And how embarassing it must be for the media to not be able to even ask tough questions about the civil rights of and future due process for this man, Jose Padilla. Instead the media trot out "dirty bomb" talking heads and play into the scare game orchestrated from the White House. Who among us can believe any of this?" - (From NY Newsday).

You go, dude! Hope he didn't use his real name.

Operation Enduring Poll Numbers: the Pink Tutus' Latest Performance:

Prominent Democrats in Congress called Sunday for removing Saddam Hussein from power, endorsing a classified Bush administration plan that gives the CIA broader power to take action against the Iraqi leader. The administration "is trying to bring about a change in regime...I think it is an appropriate action to take," said House Minority Leader Dick "Fluffy" Gephardt, D-Castrato, appearing on This Weak.

Gephardt and other members of Congress - both Democrats and repuglicans - cited Saddam's alleged pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and violations of United Nations resolutions and international law as justification for such a move. Senate Majority Leader Tom "Isadora" Daschle, D-Pantywaist, said he is satisfied with the degree of consultation so far between the administration and Congress on the plan. "Squeal! Wheepwheep!"

"If Saddam Hussein's around five years from now, we've failed," said Sen. Joseph "Kneepads" Biden, D-Dickless, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. "Now if you'll excuse me, I have to look for my garter belt." - (From Yahoo nooze).

Bravo! Hope you guys won't be shilling for donations to the DNC anytime soon!

Quotes of the Day:

"[W]e are entitled, in a world where what the US President says may affect all our lives, to expect something better than the overblown claims and ignominious climbdowns that are the hallmark of this ignorant, inept administration. Frantic displays of patriotism, random round-ups of hundreds of foreigners and unverifiable claims about imminent terrorist attacks cannot conceal the fact that its members do not know what they are doing; any day now, I expect to hear that Switzerland, or perhaps Belgium, has been added to the axis of evil. It is not just Mr Bush, as I naively hoped, who is absolutely clueless." - Joan Smith, in The London Independent.

"Bush defined our problem when, following the Sept. 11 attacks, he said the terrorists attacked us 'because we are freedom's home and defender.' So Bush (with ample help from pliant, poll-reading congressional Democrats and an amenable public) set about removing America's freedoms. How clever. When the the job is finished, when all our freedoms are gone, we'll finally be safe. The bad guys will no longer have reason to hate us. What a brilliant scheme! " - Harley Sorensen, in The San Francisco Chronicle.