George W. Bush scribbled on American flags at a rally in Michigan, July, 2003.


Thursday, September 30, 2004


"Her husband PJ got killed. He'd been in Afghanistan, went to Iraq. You know, it's hard work to try to love her as best as I can, knowing full well that the decision I made caused her loved one to be in harm's way."

"Of course we're after Saddam Hussein -- I mean bin Laden. He's isolated."

"I don't think we want to get to how he's going to pay for all these [homeland security] promises. It's like a huge tax gap."

"We've got 100,000 trained now, 125,000 by the end of this year, 200,000 by the end of next year."

"We're being challenged like never before."

"First of all, of course I know Osama bin Laden attacked us. I know that."

"We tried diplomacy. We did our best. [Saddam] was hoping to turn a blind eye."

"And so if Kim Jong Il decides again to not honor an agreement, he's not only doing injustice to America, he'd be doing injustice to China, as well."

"I appreciate the fact that his daughters have been so kind to my daughters in what has been a pretty hard experience for, I guess, young girls, seeing their dads out there campaigning."

"proliferation is one of the centerpieces of a multi-prong strategy"

Note: this is from the Washington Post transcript, some of it may be incorrect. UPDATE: some corrections.


George Walker Bush v. John Forbes Kerry

Pre-debate thought: why even have audience?


More than 2300 rebel attacks in the last 30 days.


Ichiro hit #256 today. He needs two hits to break the single-season record, with three games left.


CNN is reporting that an entire U.S. brigade is now entering Sammarra, Iraq, a no-go zone where insurgents are gathered. During the breaking report, the CNN reporter on audio went out of contact seconds after a loud wooshing sound could be heard. She got back on the air soon.

Since we know there is always something political about this kind of decision, what is at work? First, Rove wants to reinforce the theme that Bush should not be criticized while Americans are in battle. Second, Rove wants to discount the theme that Iraq is on hold militarily until the election. Third, Rove wants to shore up the base, which has been complaining that we are not doing enough killing in Iraq, allowing rebels to fester.

Look for Bush to mention the battle during the debate (UPDATE: Eh, shows what we know) and the fact that t'rr killed dozens of children today. We will never know how many children the U.S. military has killed in Iraq but it is more than 35, that is for sure.


Part III of the Oh Really/ Shrub "visit." (On Night 2, during talking points, Bill had this independent view to offer, while wondering why Kerry doesn't come on his show too: "the president does have a bit of momentum while John Kerry has a tan.")

Just a list of the most offensive Bush quotes:

1. [On My Pet Goat, 9/11] - "I was thinking America was under attack, I was collecting my thoughts, and I wasn't about to panic a bunch of kids."

2. "I do rely on prayer"

3. "that's what I believe we're doing is spreading the peace"

4. "I do love the job" - Note: Despite Bush's viscious "need to win," there is a small chance that he will self-distruct, because any sane person knows that Bush hates this job and would rather be loafing - which he does anyway.

5. "I believe what these kids are seeing on their TV screens in Iraq and Afghanistan will make their life better when Iraq becomes free." Note : ????


Thru Josh Marshall, we find this:

Fox News Channel, whose turn it is under a rotation system to operate the "pool" cameras for all the networks in the first debate on Thursday in Coral Gables, Florida, said it would follow its own editorial judgment in operating its cameras.

"They don't want reaction shots," said Fox News spokesman Paul Schur told Reuters. "We're not going to bow to outside pressure. We're not going to follow these restrictions."

His comments were echoed by executives of cable news rival CNN and the Big Three commercial broadcasters -- ABC, CBS and NBC -- all of which plan to mix their own production from the feeds supplied by Fox News.


The run up to the debate is one of the best examples of the media script. The exact same themes are parroted again and again. They are always certain to include the theme that Bush is well ahead in polls regarding "strong leader" and "terror (and Iraq)."

What does it mean to be a "strong leader?" If the question was "effective leader," the numbers would decrease for Bush. Why is that question even relevant, when there is already a job approval question?

Also, it is very confusing that the questions about Iraq and t'rr are separate, because the Bush view is that they are inseparable. Therefore, the kool-aid drinkers will say "Bush is good in Iraq" because they think he's good on t'rr and they are inseparable, thus inflating the Iraq approval numbers. In addition, it's not unreasonable for people to suggest that they don't "trust" Kerry on Iraq, because they have no performance to measure his potential. It's a blank slate. Only when pollsters ask "how things are going" in Iraq, do we see something like real numbers, and only when they don't use "America" in the question.

The Kerry tan is another big one, yet the obvious theme of Bush regularly mangling sentences is almost non-existent. Oops, that's right, no one cares if our strong leader can't speak English, 'cause he's a "strong leader" and the press will always explain what we all know he meant to say.


We like 'em.
Declaring that personal security is as important as national security, a judge Wednesday blocked the government from conducting secret, unchallengeable searches of Internet and telephone records as part of its fight against terrorism.

A 90-year-old Quaker was among half a dozen people who decided Wednesday to spend seven days in jail rather than pay a $250 fine for blocking the entrance to a federal courthouse during an anti-war protest last year.

Lillian Willoughby, of Deptford, N.J., sat in a wheelchair in court as she spoke for about five minutes about the war in Iraq, which she said had recently claimed the son of a good friend. ...

... "I've been arrested before but never spent time in jail,'' Willoughby said. "This is the start of a great adventure.''

Suzuki's fifth-inning single gave him 255 hits, two shy of George Sisler's 84-year-old major league record ... Suzuki has four games remaining to get the record.


Incredible. The White House "discovers" yet another document.
The document, signed a year after Bush left the Texas Air National Guard, said he was leaving the military because of "inadequate time to fulfill possible future commitments.'' ...

... "The president was transferring to Alabama to perform equivalent duty in a non-flying capacity, making a flight physical unnecessary,'' the White House said.

The White House did not answer whether Bush disobeyed a direct order to take the exam. Bush won final approval to train for three months with an Alabama unit a month after he had already been suspended as a pilot.


1. U.S. bombs civilian neighborhood
2. Women and children die
3. "Secondary explosions" prove that it was a safe house for t'rr ("Zarqawi")

These reports are becoming almost untrackable and completely blurred. Today, the AP runs the headline and uses "Al Qaeda." When you read the article, it is just another "Zarqawi safe house."

Read this (9/30) and this and try to see a difference. They are like boilerplate. Except for the "Al Qaeda" thing. Which matters. As a bare minimum.

We really can't tell one story from another over the past several days.

Wednesday, September 29, 2004


Damfacrats recently claimed that Oh Really's questions to Bush were submitted in advance, based on the memory of his show, since FNC refuses to post whole transcripts (grrr). Tonight, Bill O bragged about how the questions were not pre-submitted, so ... let it be corrected.


CNN revealed a new Gallup poll. It showed Bush leading Kerry among Likely voters only 49 to 47 in Ohio. The previous Gallup poll showed 52 -44. The new poll also shows Kerry leading Bush 50-46 among Registered voters in Ohio. Here is the breakdown in USA Today.

As any informed American knows, Gallup's polls are widely at variance with others and almost always favor Bush because they severly overweigh Republicans. Given this, it was very amusing to watch the kissing cousins, Judy Woodruff and Paula Zahn, attempt to spin the new poll in some way to make it look like Kerry was still "struggling" there.

Even if Kerry loses Iowa (7) and Wisconsin (10), he can win if he gets Ohio (20) + NH (4) and NV(5) (or 4 of Colorado's 9). If Kerry takes Ohio and holds either Iowa or Wisconsin, esa es la enchilada, Arbusto.

Thanks to Gallup, it gets meaningless pretty quickly.

Florida- LV w/ Nader - B52 K43
Florida- RV w/ Nader - B49 K44
Florida- LV w/o Nader - B53 K43
Florida- RV w/o Nader - B50 K45

So, with Nader out, Bush's numbers go up? OK. Bush prev best: 9/23, 49-46

Penn. - LV w/ Nader - B49 K46
Penn. - RV w/ Nader - K49 B45
Penn. - LV w/o Nader - B50 K47
Penn. - RV w/o Nader - K49 B46

So, with Nader out, Bush's numbers go up? OK. Bush prev best: 9/8, 48-47

Ohio - LV w/ Nader - B49 K47
Ohio - RV w/ Nader - K49 B46
Ohio - LV w/o Nader - B50 K48
Ohio - RV w/o Nader - K50 B46

So, with Nader out, Bush's numbers go up? OK. Bush prev best: 9/8, 52-44

We've decided that all these crappy polls mean that Kerry will win in a landslide.


The DNC posted the video of her at a Kerry rally. She voted Bush in 2000 and has been banging her head against the whitewash wall in D.C. for three years. She has been very outspoken, so maybe some will see her as "old news" but she can be a part of the "last three weeks" push to inform voters of things they never knew. This video is effective.


The DHS and FBI just love to tell us the obvious: that prominent events "might be" terrorist targets, despite having no specific information. Who cares? Who doesn't know that the debates "might be" a target? This is obviously political, an obvious point, and barely worth posting. The Damfacrats are getting "fake t'rr" fatigue.


Click thru to BushOut TV and link to the video.

"That's how he got the name Dubya - whenever you'd drink, he'd double ya"


A new poll shows that they don't know where the candidates stand. Big score for the vapid media.


Kerry says that his 87 billion comment was an "inarticulate moment."
"It was just a very inarticulate way of saying something and I had one of those inarticulate moments," Kerry said in an interview broadcast Wednesday on "Good Morning America" on ABC. "But it reflects the truth of the position ... I thought that the wealthiest people of America should share in that burden. It was a protest.
That infamous comment was actually very truthful - although it overestimated the intelligence of voters. By saying "I actually voted for the 87 billion - before I voted against it," Kerry was inviting analysis that never arrived. It was so brazen that it should have triggered a response that asked "well, how is that possible? It must be because the bill changed and he did not like the new version."

His new explanation is the right idea but a bit insufficient. He needed to focus on Bush's threatened veto of the same bill (if he did, it's not reported in the article).

This, however, is long overdue:
"We should not have gone to war knowing the information that we know today," Kerry told ABC. "Knowing there was no imminent threat to America, knowing there were no weapons of mass destruction, knowing there was no connection of Saddam Hussein to Al Qaida, I would not have gone to war. That's plain and simple."


We have been calling for it for months. Kerry needs a few frontline spokespersons with a southern accent. Think it doesn't matter? Decide whether Donna Brazile impacts Whitey Joe Yokel in Arkansas. Sounds harsh ... too bad. (Carville doesn't count, because he is not on the forefront of the campaign and because his bizzarre grabling is often difficult for anyone to understand ... nor does Edwards, who has too much to gain).

Digby has a good post (as usual) clipping Matt Y's wings a little and mentioning the Rove belief that "politics is TV with the sound turned off." Quite astute. However, to the extent that the sound is on, can we hear some drawl, please? It's the same principle. Presentation matters more than content. Every time an undecided rural voter hears a Kerry rep, sounding like another "NE liberal," it reinforces the tired enRoNC theme.


They sure are quick to "fact-check" the MoveOn ad in their paper. Too bad they are so slow with the things that really matter.

The MoveOn ad pointed out, correctly, that the Gallup polls use 40%+ GOP samples, leaving results that obviously favor Bush. To the Times' Jim Rutenburg, it's all whining.

This article is garbage. UPDATE: More on this garbage. ... and more, from Ruy. He makes this as clear as day. IF Bush was really ahead by 13 nationwide, that puts him up by at least 10 million votes, probably more like 13 million. Where do all these people live?

Not in the teeny Bush states, like Wyoming, where some several hundred thousand people live and a third of them still want Kerry. Not in the large swing states, where Gallup says Bush is ahead by small margins. Not in the heavily Kerry states, where populations are large and Kerry is killing Bush. It's like Bush looking under the couch for the WMD. Ridiculous.


Unlike Kerry' position on the war, it is difficult to understand Medicare. However, the GAO understands it and, like when they busted the Cartel for hiring phony reporters to pimp their Medicare plan, the GAO knows when something is illegal.
The Bush administration violated the law by allowing private insurers to limit choices of some patients in a small trial program of managed health care under Medicare, congressional investigators said.
Who was the spokesperson for such illegality? Why, Scotty Boy's brother, of course.
Dr. Mark McClellan, administrator of the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, said the government will comply with GAO's recommendations.
Does this qualify for the Scandal Scorecard?


On Kerry, in the NYT:
A Fast Finisher's Reputation Now Faces the Ultimate Test
Couldn't he have said "strong?" Wonkette will have a field day, no doubt. All Bush slogans have something to do with Viagra-related activities. Strong, firm, resolve, unwavering, steady ...

The truth is, if anyone is premature, it's the Bush Boy.

Suzuki led off the game with a double to right-center, then singled to start the fifth. He finished 2-for-5 and needs four hits in Seattle's final five games to break George Sisler's 84-year-old record of 257 hits in a season.


For whom do we root? Since Judy Miller, loudspeaker for the Cartel is involved, it is tempting to side with Ashcroft. It is difficult to say, especially since the AP article reveals little or nothing about the substance of the suit.

The lawsuit said the Justice Department has advised the Times that it plans to obtain records of all telephone calls by Shenon and Miller for 20 days in the months immediately following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Newsday has a little more info - as in, any information at all. We root for the Justice Dept., because this is Fitzgerald at work, not Crisco:

The New York Times sued Attorney General John Ashcroft yesterday to block federal efforts to obtain two veteran reporters' phone records in a probe of who leaked information about Islamic charities tied to terrorists.

The suit seeks to be part of a sweeping "leak" probe being conducted by Patrick Fitzgerald, the U.S. attorney in Chicago who also is trying to determine who disclosed the identity of Central Intelligence Agency agent Valerie Plame. In addition to the Plame case, Fitzgerald is investigating whether Times reporters Judith Miller and Philip Shenon were tipped off about developments in his investigation of charities accused of having ties to terrorists after Sept. 11.
What is going on here with the charities? It seems that Fitzgerald may be trying to prove an array of leaking, which may have occurred for any number of reasons. Fitzgerald's motives seem good but who can say in this climate? Is it a whitewash? (UPDATE: Safire attacks him today, that's the gold standard. Trust him.)

It is not looking like this investigation will wrap up anytime soon - maybe on November 3rd.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004


Iraqi Christians are being brutally persecuted in "The New Iraq." Here's what Oyster has to say about it, upon which, we cannot improve:
Reflect on this for a moment: thousands of Christians who spent a lifetime under Saddam Hussein now find conditions in Iraq unendurable. Since passports are still "difficult to obtain legally", the exodus is not merely the result of eased travel strictures.

Apparently these Iraqi Christians disagree with the Good News proclaimed by Messrs. Bush and Allawi. Don't these doubting Thomases know that the Almighty's gift of freedom reigns?! And shouldn't neocons be criticizing these Iraqi families for deciding to "cut and run", precisely when democracy is blooming?


One more thing on this No Spine Zone "visit."

Bush touted the fact that the Guard guy, Walter Staudt, came out last week and said no one ever contacted him to get AWOL boy into the guard. Fine.
"He didn't use political influence to get into the Air National Guard," Staudt said, adding, "I don't know how they would know that, because I was the one who did it and I was the one who was there and I didn't talk to any of them." ... "No one called me about taking George Bush into the Air National Guard," he said. "It was my decision. I swore him in. I never heard anything from anybody."
Okay, whatever. Staudt also said he is voting for Bush. Fine.

The thing is, when you look at the original article from 1999, wherein Ben Barnes said he did Bush the favor by contacting the Guard, he never said it was Staudt, he said it was Gen. James M. Rose:
The speaker, Ben Barnes, intervened on Bush's behalf sometime in late 1967 or early 1968 at the request of a good friend of Bush's father, then a Republican congressman from Houston, the sources said. The friend, Sidney A. Adger, was a prominent Houston business executive who died in 1996. The Guard official contacted at his behest, Brig. Gen. James M. Rose, died in 1993.
Meanwhile, Bush himself claimed, confirmed by his advisor, to have called up Staudt in 1967:
Bush has said that he met Staudt in late 1967, during Christmas vacation of his senior year at Yale, called him later, and by Bush's account, "found out what it took to apply."
In fact, it appears that Staudt did the "swearing in" and then - afterwards - Rose approved the application:
Bush was sworn in as an airman on May 27, 1968, in the office of another Guard official, then-Col. Walter B. "Buck" Staudt, commander of the 147th Fighter Group. His pilot trainee application was then sent to Austin and Rose initialed his approval around June 5.
The Post ran another article about this in the summer of 1999:
Bush was sworn in as an airman the same day he applied. His commander, Col. Walter B. "Buck" Staudt, was apparently so pleased to have a VIP's son in his unit that he later staged a special ceremony so he could have his picture taken administering the oath, instead of the captain who actually had sworn Bush in. Later, when Bush was commissioned a second lieutenant by another subordinate, Staudt again staged a special ceremony for the cameras, this time with Bush's father the congressman - a supporter of the Vietnam War - standing proudly in the background.
Even the connection between Barnes and Rose was explained:
A top aide to Barnes, Nick Kralj, simultaneously served as aide to the head of the Texas Air National Guard, the late Brig. Gen. James M. Rose. ... In a deposition for the suit, Kralj confirmed that he would get calls from Barnes or his chief of staff, Robert Spelling, "saying so-and-so is interested in getting in the Guard." Kralj said he would then forward the names to Gen. Rose. ... Kralj, in his deposition, said he could not recall any of the names he gave to Gen. Rose.


Other goals for this interview, not mentioned in our previous post: make Shrub look moderate and run a practice for the debates.

Oh Really's "World Exclusive" (indecipherable from any other type of "exclusive," by definition) features "questions submitted in advance," to ensure that doubleplusgood spin.

Tonight show included Oh Really bashing "pinhead liberals" and "college professors," as well as higher education in general, like "Harvard and Yale," where they are "all pinheads" and from where Oh Really says he couldn't wait to leave - granting a muttering Bush the same attitude - "you just wanted to get out of there, I know, I was the same way ..." Preznit Sugarcoat was baffled as to why such "pinheads" do not support him. Ignorance is Strength.

Bush said (gasp) he regrets nothing about his AWOL experiences. When asked about the divided nation, he "reminded" Bill that things were divided "in 2000" too, "heh heh heh," which, naturally, has nothing to do with the question of how things got so polarized since 9/11.

O'Reilly drew Iraq misinformation capital from, apparently, Gulf War soldiers "buried in the sand," despite the usual custom of bringing home the bodies to bury them here.

O'REILLY: Well what about the guys who died in the first Gulf War, when you sign a cease-fire that he disobeyed seventeen times ...

BUSH: Absolutely.

O'REILLY: We're supposed to let those guys just be buried in the sand and not do anything?

According to Bush, France "helped us in Haiti," which causes an irony overload and an end to this post.


We punish crimes and imprison people for four reasons: rehabilitation, incarceration (remove the threat) revenge and deterrence. Many legal scholars believe that revenge is the only purpose that succeeds on a broad basis.

To listen to the GOP hacks discuss Osama Bin Laden, you would think that the only reason to punish someone is incarceration. Revenge doesn't seem to mean anything to these people. Take the #1 hack, name a' Georgie:
Deep in my heart I know the man is on the run, if he's alive at all. Who knows if he's hiding in some cave or not; we haven't heard from him in a long time. And the idea of focusing on one person is -- really indicates to me people don't understand the scope of the mission. Terror is bigger than one person. And he's just -- he's a person who's now been marginalized. His network, his host government has been destroyed. He's the ultimate parasite who found weakness, exploited it, and met his match.
Tonight on Hardball, Matthews asked another GOP hack if he would rather see Saddam or Osama in jail. The guy fumbled around, of course, it was pathetic.

Revenge. If you believe Osama did this, it doesn't matter if he is incarcerated in a cave, defeated and rehabilitated, or if the overall war on t'rr has deterred others from t'rr. Revenge.

Oakland held Ichiro Suzuki to one hit, leaving him five shy of George Sisler's 84-year-old record of 257. The Mariners have six games remaining.


We recently suggested that Kerry needs to use Bush tactics against Bush.

To the extent he needs to be concise, that's still true, but the Bush-mocking and ridiculing is not necessary and attempts to be funny may really fail badly.

The key element is to catch Bush smirking and laughing about something very, very serious. Kerry needs to present himself as a serious man and hammer home the opposite about Bush. Bush is incapable of acting in any other manner so it will make him even more shifty and uncomfortable once Kerry paints him that way.

"I would ask the President, why is he shrugging? Why does he smirk and smile when he's asked about the dead and dying, the wounded? Does he still want to say 'Bring 'em on' and leave it at that? Why can't he give a serious answer to a serious question about families with no paycheck and no health insurance?" Kerry might say. Early. Often.


In Rolling Stone:
... I didn't grow up in a very political household. The only politics I heard was from my mother. I came home from grade school, where someone asked me if I was Republican or Democrat, and I asked my mom, "Well, what are we?" She said, "We're Democrats, 'cause Democrats are for the working people." ...

... One of the most disturbing aspects of this election is that the machinery for taking something that is a lie and making it feel true, or taking something that is true and making it feel like a lie -- the selling machinery has become very powerful. Senator Kerry has to make people pay attention to the man behind the curtain. He has to take the risk and rip the veil off the administration's deceptions. They are a hall of mirrors and a house of cards...

... The press has let the country down. It's taken a very amoral stand, in that essential issues are often portrayed as simply one side says this and the other side says that. I think that Fox News and the Republican right have intimidated the press into an incredible self-consciousness about appearing objective and backed them into a corner of sorts where they have ceded some of their responsibility and righteous power. ...

... I don't know if it began with the Iraq War, but shortly thereafter there was an enormous amount of Fox impersonators among what you previously thought were relatively sane media outlets across the cable channels. It was very disheartening. The job of the press is to tell the truth without fear or favor. We have to get back to that standard. ...

... The free press is supposed to be the lifeline and the blood of democracy. That is the position of responsibility that those institutions have. Those things are distorted by ratings and by money to where you're getting one hour of the political conventions. ...

...Real news is the news we need to protect our freedoms. You get tabloid news, you get blood-and-guts news, you get news shot through with a self-glorifying facade of patriotism, but people have to sift too much for the news that we need to protect our freedoms. It should be gloriously presented to the people on a nightly basis. The loss of some of the soberness and seriousness of those institutions has had a devastating effect upon people's ability to respond to the events of the day ...

... The fact that the administration refused to allow photographs of the flag-draped coffins of returning dead, that the president hasn't shown up at a single military funeral for the young people who gave their lives for his policies, is disgraceful ...


The Oh Really interview is designed to counter two ideas growing into a consensus: that Fox News is a GOP propaganda device and that Bush cannot admit unhappy truths. It is also supposed to reaffirm the myth that Bush will speak his mind, regardless of whether it is popular.

Short List of distortions, Night 1:

1. "I also saw a poll where it said by far the vast majority of the Iraqis believe the world is getting better." [Meaningless, unsubstantiated, incoherent]

2. "Electricity is better." [Unprovable, without reference, debatable]
[The ever-rosy Portal Iraq says "Electricity production in the country averages approximately 5,000 MW, a total that services an estimated 15 million Iraqi homes and exceeds the pre-war level of 4,400 Megawatts."

The British Embassy says: "Power generation now averages 4, 750, compared with pre-conflict level of 4, 400 . The Interim Iraqi Government has set a target of 6,000 by the end of 2004."

US AID once claimed that the pre-conflict level was 5,500 MW but then claimed that it "generated a peak of 4,518 MW on October 6, 2003, exceeding the capacity generated before the conflict."

The Pentagram military paper said on Sep 10th, 2004: " boosted electricity production here to more than 5,300 MW, enough to service 27 million more Iraqi homes than were fueled under the former regime."(echoed by Portal here)

Iraq Reconstruction, an industry site, said "A goal of 7500 MW with a reduction in load shedding has been set for the summer of 2004"

P.S. This "Iraq Pipeline Watch" has an overwhelming list of setbacks.]
3. "I think that the, government of Iraq, Allawi, did a good job in Najaf with Sadr." [Credit where credit is not due - the U.S. did all the fighting, Najaf was on the verge of hell until Sistani motored in and saved the day]

Monday, September 27, 2004

Referring to the faceoff scheduled for Thursday night, Bush said, "He probably could spend 90 minutes debating himself."
Bush, actually did spend 5-7 minutes staring into space after he learned America was under attack. So, do we want a president who can debate himself or one that plays with ... ?


Thru WTF is it Now?


From where Timid Tim got this?

MR. RUSSERT: And legend has it that Robert Kennedy turned up the thermostat in order to make it warmer and cause Nixon to sweat. Do you believe that?

MS. GOODWIN: I wouldn't be surprised.

MR. SAFIRE: I wouldn't be surprised at all.


George has a few words about the impending broadcast of Oh Really's Shrub interview.


We predicted it this morning ... not that it was difficult. Goodbye 10,000, hello 50 per.

DOW closes - 9988
Oil - $49.64/barrel, all-time record


Could it be that the press resents it when the government tells America not to believe the press?

Here we have, finally, the basic truth on a well-worn topic:

"He voted for the use of force in Iraq and then didn't vote to fund the troops, he complained that we're not spending enough money to help reconstruction in Iraq, now he says we're spending too much," Bush said. "He said it was the right decision to go into Iraq, now he calls it the wrong war."

In October 2002, Kerry voted for the congressional resolution giving Bush the authority to oust Saddam Hussein but has argued that the president rushed to war without assembling sufficient support from allies and failed to draw up a clear plan for post-war Iraq.

Last year, Kerry voted against an $87 billion aid package for Iraq and Afghanistan, backing an alternative that would have reduced tax cuts to pay for the assistance. Bush had threatened to veto the aid package because he opposed some elements.


Near Houston.


This had better be on the rocket docket:
A federal appeals court on Monday revived a lawsuit seeking a paper trail for Florida's new touchscreen voting machines with only five weeks left before the presidential election.

The court told a federal judge to reopen the case affecting the 15 Florida counties that use voting machines that don't create paper copies.

Three judges from the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals wrote that the judge improperly decided not to get involved in the lawsuit filed by Rep. Robert Wexler, a Florida Democrat.


WP headline and sub-line are confusing (probably not deliberately):
Election Heightens Terrorism Offensive
What? Does this mean terrorists are on the offensive?
Officials to Publicize Increased Disruption Efforts for Nov. 2 Vote
Wow. So, the gov't is going to tell us all about increased terrorist efforts to disrupt the election? Something new they have learned?

No. It means efforts to disrupt the terrorists. Ah.

The Cartel is using the election to ramp up the police state and frighten people into focusing on an issue that supposedly favors the pResident.

So, they use a "heightened election threat" excuse, although there is no intelligence to support it, but then they say they are "just as worried" from here to eternity.
James M. Loy, the deputy secretary of Homeland Security, said in an interview Friday that even if there is no attack between now and the inauguration, officials will be just as worried about other events well into 2005 and beyond.

"I call it the new normalcy," Loy said. "We're immersed [in a war] with the first 'ism' in the 21st century. . . . We must find a way to hold onto the sense of urgency, and hold it potentially for decades." ...

... Paul J. McNulty, the U.S. attorney in Alexandria, said the steps will include urging police to run the names of anyone they stop in coming weeks -- even for a traffic violation -- through the watch list at the FBI's Terrorism Screening Center in Crystal City.

... bulletin will be sent today to the 50 states and the District, containing guidelines to governors and election officials for ... legal powers to order emergency election changes ...
We need to get rid of these thugs, because they don't keep us safe. They only pretend to, when it suits them politically. This is just plain creepy.

... civil rights leaders have cautioned that security measures should not discourage or intimidate citizens from voting, and state laws and customs historically have insulated election officials from gubernatorial executive powers, which include authority over emergency preparedness and public safety. ...

... Materials circulated to election managers recommend that states plan for possible scenarios including an elevated national terror threat level before Election Day, the possibility of attacks leading up to Nov. 2 requiring higher security and strikes that disrupt balloting. ...


As if. Still, look for the Dow to close below 10,000 and look for oil to hit an all-time high, how about ... $49.55/barrel?


MyDD (that's "Due Diligence," it seems) has a poll up that asks whether it is morally acceptable to out gay Republicans. The answer is no. It's nobody's business what kind of sex someone prefers.

In the past couple of months there have been several of these stories, involving GOP hypocrites with anti-gay voting records, who turn out to be gay. We prefer not to post about them.

Now, is it necessary in the power struggle that Democrats face today? Absolutely.

Bush did not use the phrase "Mission Accomplished," but that message was emblazoned on a prominent banner directly behind the president as he declared major combat operations over in Iraq.
Well, pretty close, couldn't one say?
"America sent you on a mission to remove a grave threat and to liberate an oppressed people, and that mission has been accomplished."


We have billions for Iraq and we can't spare a couple of helicopters for Haiti?

Pereira said many people were suffering from diarrhea while others, many of them children, were contracting gangrene. Amputations were being performed under horrendous conditions, he said.

Interim Prime Minister Gerard Latortue said Saturday the storm that ravaged Haiti last week killed at least 1,500 people. ...

... Anne Poulsen of the U.N. World Food Program said relief agencies were working around the clock trying to get food to victims, even using donkeys and mules in the effort.

When trucks carrying 8 tons of food from Cap-Haitien - the port to the north - were blocked by mudslides, "we unloaded the food from trucks and put it on to donkeys and mules to reach localities ... where people had not eaten for a week," Poulsen said.

Sunday, September 26, 2004


To take and handle a drink. Like Big John.

Has it ever occurred to anyone how absurd it is to say "Bush is the guy you could have a beer with?" He stopped drinkin cuz he can't even handle his liquor!


Look for the interview this week with Oh Really, Mon-Wed.
President Bush said he had no regrets about donning a flight suit to give his "Mission Accomplished" speech on Iraq in May 2003 and would do it all over again if he had the chance, according to excerpts from an television interview released on Sunday.

When asked by Fox News if he still would have put on a flight suit to declare major combat operations in Iraq over, Bush replied, "Absolutely."


Seven games left:
Ichiro Suzuki collecting another hit, No. 251 ... That moved him into sole possession of fifth place for the most hits in a season and within six of George Sisler's record, 257, set in 1920.


This one is actually pretty good, for once, although we don't think Wonkette needs any more attention than she already gets.

That's kind of like what Billmon says, who wrote something for the LA Times and has not been minding the Whiskey Bar lately.

Thru Digby.


In Iraq:

Business is booming at the Baghdad morgue. ...

... Besides doing autopsies, the doctors at the institute specialize in the examinations of women accused by their husbands of not being virgins when they married, a serious charge that can lead to an annulment.

The doctors also examine men accused of homosexuality, a criminal offense in Iraq. They must also approve all marriages of girls 14 or younger, verifying that they have reached puberty and are physically capable of intercourse.


Seems that these hurricanes probably aren't influenced by climate change:
"Warmer water temperatures will promote more intense tropical storms, but not necessarily make the frequency of those storms greater," said Dan Cayan, a research meteorologist at the University of California in San Diego. ... Some members of Congress, scientists and environmental groups contend that global warming is upsetting environmental balances by altering fragile weather patterns in the world.

However, 10 climatologists and scientists sent a letter to Sen. John McCain, the Arizona Republican who heads the committee, saying there is no scientific evidence of a link between severe weather -- such as hurricanes, blizzards and heat waves -- and global warming. They argued that warmer periods of temperatures have actually led to a decline in the number and severity of storms.

"We suggest that natural variability of storminess is the cause of Florida's recent hurricane disasters," they wrote. "In such times there is an emotional tendency to pin blame somewhere."

McCain said during the hearing that human activities are contributing to global warming and require "real reductions" in greenhouse gas emissions. The United States is the world's biggest producer of the gases, which come from automobiles, power plants and other sources.


The tide is rising.
The Nation - "Withdraw Now"
Jonathan Schell - "Why We Must Leave Iraq"
Mother Jones - "Creating Our Own Dream Enemy"


The sad truth is that Kerry's intellect will not take him too far against Bush in the debate. He has to use Bush's tactics against him.

A WP writer draws an analogy to the scene in Animal House where Belushi discovers the singing guy on the stairs:
You don't have to guess which candidate is which here. The guitar-playing Kerry, who once bragged to Vogue magazine that his chocolate chip cookies are special because he uses imported Swiss chocolate, and the frat house wiseguy Bush.

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Ichiro Suzuki's two-run single gave him 250 hits, seven shy of George Sisler's 84-year-old major league record with eight games remaining.

Suzuki went 1-for-5 and is batting .374, best in the majors. He tied Rogers Hornsby (1922) and Chuck Klein (1930) for fifth on the single-season hits list.


See this article.


Russert does not just have MTP. He also inflicts us with a Saturday evening show. Tonight he featured Andy Sullivan and Chrissy Hitchens. Their pro-war attitude is really unpatriotic, which is no surprise, since, like Allawi, they aren't Americans.


Thru, Buzzflash, where we get a lot of news and so should you, we see that The Times has verified superior GOTV efforts by Democrats in Ohio (10-1) and Florida (5-1).
A sweeping voter registration campaign in heavily Democratic areas has added tens of thousands of new voters to the rolls in the swing states of Ohio and Florida, a surge that has far exceeded the efforts of Republicans in both states, a review of registration data shows.

The analysis by The New York Times of county-by-county data shows that in Democratic areas of Ohio - primarily low-income and minority neighborhoods - new registrations since January have risen 250 percent over the same period in 2000. In comparison, new registrations have increased just 25 percent in Republican areas. A similar pattern is apparent in Florida: in the strongest Democratic areas, the pace of new registration is 60 percent higher than in 2000, while it has risen just 12 percent in the heaviest Republican areas.

People sticking with Bush are obviously lazy and stupid (yes, that's right) and grudgingly supporting Bush out of their distaste for Kerry. You hear that a lot - "I don;t agree with Bush on a lot of things but I'm not into Kerry." Apathetic and poorly informed, clearly. They also live farther apart and they are less likely to show up to vote with this attitude.

Meanwhile, the gut reaction against Bush is strong and new voters will show up just to stick it to the Shrub. American Black people know what happened in Florida. With all this in mind, things may indeed go Kerry's way - the eratic polls be damned.


Uh, I think she means "blinders:"
"I used to be a Democrat," said Mrs Hall. "That was before I knew. Then came talk radio and the internet. The blinkers came off." ...

... And could I name any films in which the Viet Cong were portrayed as villains? Well, there was The Deer Hunter, which won the Best Picture Oscar in 1978; in it, sweating, screaming, vicious North Vietnamese soldiers are shown dragging their US prisoners from rat-infested cages and forcing them to play Russian roulette. Hubbard hadn't seen it.


U.S. Military deaths: June 42, July 54, Aug 66, Sep 70. Bring 'em home.


For now anyway, CBS is officially the lamest of the lame telescreen outlets, worse than Fox. By the way , the CEO of Viacom, CBS owner, recently endorsed Bush very loudly. In the NYT:
CBS News said yesterday that it had postponed a "60 Minutes" segment that questioned Bush administration rationales for going to war in Iraq. ...

... CBS said last night that the report on the war would not run before Nov. 2.

"We now believe it would be inappropriate to air the report so close to the presidential election," the spokeswoman, Kelli Edwards, said in a statement.


Very nice:
It is fair game for the president to claim that toppling Saddam Hussein was a blow to terrorism, to accuse Mr. Kerry of flip-flopping and to repeat continually that the war in Iraq is going very well, despite all evidence to the contrary. It is absolutely not all right for anyone on his team to suggest that Mr. Kerry is the favored candidate of the terrorists. And at a time when the United States is supposed to be preparing the Iraqi people for a democratic election, it's appalling to hear the chief executive say that loyal opposition gives aid and comfort to the enemy abroad.

The general instinct of Americans is to play fair. That is why, even though terrorists struck the United States during President Bush's watch, the Democrats have not run a campaign that blames him for allowing the World Trade Center and the Pentagon to be attacked. And while the war in Iraq has opened up large swaths of the country to terrorist groups for the first time, any effort by Mr. Kerry to describe the president as the man whom Osama bin Laden wants to keep in power would be instantly denounced by the Republicans as unpatriotic.


Nine games left to get eight hits:
Suzuki, 2-for-4, singled in the third and sixth innings and had a sacrifice fly in the fourth. His 249 hits moved him past Ty Cobb and into sole possession of seventh place on the all-time list. Sisler had 257 hits in 1920.

Friday, September 24, 2004


Just this week:
"I understand what mixed messages do. You can embolden an enemy by sending mixed messages. ... You send the wrong message to our troops by sending mixed messages," Bush said.
1. On the Iraq vote:

Allawi's assurances about the January elections came as Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage told Congress the elections must be held throughout the country, including areas gripped by violence.

That contradicted Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, who said Thursday and again Friday that if insurgents prevent Iraqis from voting in some areas, a partial vote would be better than none at all. He stressed, however, that ``every Iraqi deserves the right to vote.''

2. On more or less troops in Iraq:

"I think we will need more troops than we currently have," Gen. John Abizaid, commander of U.S. troops in the region, said Wednesday. But, he said, Pentagon officials believe the need will be filled by Iraqis or international forces.

Asked about Abizaid's comment, Bush said the general did not mention to him the need for more troops, "but if he were to say that, I'd listen to him," Bush said. But Allawi was firm, saying Iraq needs to train more of its own troops because they ultimately will have to defend their country.

"Any implication that that place has to be peaceful and perfect before we can reduce coalition and US forces would obviously be, I think, unwise because it's never been peaceful and perfect, and it isn't likely to be," Rumsfeld told a press conference

3. On the kidnapper demands (or, on who controls "sovereign" Iraq):

The [Iraqi] official, who asked not to be named, says that Rihab Taha, a biological weapons scientist dubbed "Dr Germ" by US soldiers, could be freed as part of a review of her detention. (Sep 22)

Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiyar Zebari has denied that "Dr Germ," a scientist who worked for Saddam Hussein, is about to be released. (Sep 22)

A senior Iraqi official said Wednesday that a decision had been made to release a top female germ-warfare scientist for Saddam Hussein, but Iraq's leader and U.S. officials moved quickly to squelch the idea that she would be freed soon. (Sep 23)

4. On the Saddam trial (or, on who controls Iraq):

Deposed Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein and 11 other members of his ousted regime will face trial beginning next month, Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi said. (Sep 18)

The ousted director of the Iraqi war crimes tribunal said that Allawi has taken over the court and could rush forward with "show trials" of Saddam Hussein and other former Iraqi leaders to boost his popularity before presidential elections scheduled for January. (Sep 23)

The war crimes trial of deposed Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein won't begin any time soon because deteriorating security is hampering information-gathering in the case, a senior U.S. official said Friday. ... It is also unlikely that any of regime's top 11 officials would face trial in front of the Iraqi Special Tribunal before the end of this year, the official said. (Sep 24)

5. On how many Iraqi forces are fully trained:

With interim Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi at his side, Bush said on Thursday that nearly 100,000 fully trained and equipped Iraqi soldiers, police officers and other security personnel are already working and this number would rise to 125,000 by the end of this year.

But documents prepared by Defense Department officials and given to lawmakers show that fewer than 100,000 will be trained by the end of this year. The Pentagon also said on Monday that only about 53,000 of the 100,000 Iraqis on duty now have undergone training. The documents, obtained by Reuters, show that of the nearly 90,000 currently in the police force, only 8,169 have had the full eight-week academy training. And it will be July 2006 before the administration's new goal of 135,000 fully trained police is met.

6. On the outlook for a peaceful Iraq:

At issue is a National Intelligence Estimate of Iraq's future that spoke of possibilities ranging from tenuous stability to civil war. Asked about the report earlier in the week in New York, Bush had said, "They were just guessing as to what the conditions might be like." ...

... President Bush suggested Thursday that he wanted to clarify two things he had said recently - that just a "handful" of terrorists were at work in Iraq and that a bleak intelligence assessment of Iraq's future involved "guessing" by U.S. intelligence officials.

7. On who controls Allawi's voice:
After "This Week" arranged with Allawi's office for Sunday's interview, the U.S. State Department called ABC to say that the office of U.S. Ambassador John Negroponte in Baghdad had decided that the interview would not happen until this coming Sunday, after Allawi's U.S. visit. This attempt by the U.S. embassy to exercise sovereignty over the prime minister raised interesting questions about just what was actually transferred on June 28 when sovereignty was supposedly given to the Iraqi government. The White House recognized the inconvenience of such questions. The interview occurred. - (George Will)
8. A google search, just to cap it.


From Digby:
I think that one of the most frustrating things about Bush's smarmy rejoinder "they world is better off without Saddam in power" is that you have to answer..."well, yes, BUT THERE ARE PRIORITIES, GODDAMIT..."

It is impolitic to say it, (and probably suicidal) but in a very real sense, the answer to the question "is the world better off without Saddam in power?" is no.


What is Joe Trippi? Is he a journalist now? An analyst? An internet expert?

Is he a partisan Democrat? Maybe just a Dean guy that really wants Kerry to lose?

Whatever he is, he isn't helping beat George Bush. This was the man behind the supposedly straight-talking candidate, yet all he does is adopt the media script.

Joe Trippi is of no use to us. He was on Hardball just now and asked if the left-wing blogs have more faith that their message will get out in the mainstream media. He seemed to not even understand the question.

Joe, go away, you're not helping.


Thru Cursor, we get this. Memo: can't afford to go off message so, just keep your mouth shut.


Way to "Fisk" the Resident with a new ad.


Bush is outraged. What a complete phony. "This brave man came to talk about how he's risking his life for a free Iraq -- which helps America -- and Senator Kerry held a press conference and questioned Prime Minister Allawi's credibility." Ha! This guy Allawi rivals only Bush in terms of championship denial of reality. Laughable, man.

Then there was this:
"The last thing you want to be seen as is a puppet of the United States, and you can almost see the hand underneath the shirt today moving the lips," said Joe Lockhart, a senior Kerry adviser.
Love it, love it. Bravo! More, more! Tear it all down, it's time!


So do the words that they sound like. Matt Lavine pays attention to what really registers when one hears "new direction."

Matt's post kind of reminds us of how a lot of big corporate ads seem to use phrases that jibe with the Bush campaign themes. We need to come back to that because there may be something at work or it may be that phony marketing words are the order of the day for the enRoNC.

We also need to revisit the way so many "Bush words" sound like a Viagra commercial. Lots to do.


Damfacratic readers know we watched the US-backed operation to overturn Aristide very carefully. In case anyone is missing it, that country is in a total state of misery for completely different, although not wholly unrelated, reasons. Haiti Pundit keeps track of the horrific tragedy caused by the weather.

Wouldn't it be nice if the USA had all that borrowed Iraq money back so a few extra dollars could be sent to the innocent people suffering from nature's wrath?


Thru Atrios, this one.


Great article in the Post that calls the GOP on their hideous tactic of linking criticism of Iraq policy to emboldening enemies. It even blows the whistle on CNN's conservative "analyst," Bill Schnieder, for echoing the talking point. Here's to Milbank; great reporting job this time.


Dear CNN:

Please stop projecting the electoral college by combining polls with "analysis" from people. Your map is misleading America and damaging to the Kerry campaign as people bandwagon for the perceived winner. For example, how did you decide that New Mexico deserves to be in the Bush column? Your methods are unsound. Possibly corrupt. Stop.



It seems this was out there already but it is surprising to see, for some reason.

According to a Harris poll:

"Do you favor keeping a large number of U.S. troops in Iraq until there is a stable government there OR bringing most of our troops home in the next year?"


Wait for
Stable Govt.
Home In
Next Year

% % %

9/9-13/04 38 54 7

8/10-15/04 40 54 5

6/8-15/04 39 56 6

4/8-15/04 42 51 8

2/9-16/04 45 51 4

10/03 46 47 7

So ... the country is a little Damfacratic after all. Can Kerry just come right out and say that he will yank troops, stable or unstable? If not, why? Why is it that a consistent majority wants out for the last six months but uttering that promise seems so dangerous? Weird.


Yet another Bush flip-flop.

May 19 - The White House has insisted there are no plans to tap the reserve, which was created for emergencies.

"We will not play politics" with the stockpile, Bush said.

"That petroleum reserve is in place in case of major disruptions of energy supplies to the United States," he said. "The idea of emptying the Strategic Petroleum Reserve would put America in a dangerous position in the war on terror. We're at war. We face a tough and determined enemy on all fronts, and we must not put ourselves in a worse position in this war, and playing politics with the Strategic Petroleum Reserve would do just that."

September 23 - Oil prices held steady above $48 on Friday as the U.S. government said it would lend refiners crude from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR), but traders deemed the loan too small to have a lasting impact.


We like these ads. Too bad they get dismissed because the media has hatched the thme as a "Michael Moore thing." The Media Fund has other good ads too.


The media barely blinked this time. Ashcroft called 93 federal prosecutors and warned about t'rr before the election. Kerry must really be improving in the polls. This part is pretty specific, a yuh, like right up until inauguration, but not after that ...

"Recent intelligence suggest that al-Qaida may still be planning an attack, possibly targeting highly populated public places in large U.S. cities, in the weeks immediately prior to the elections," the FBI said Aug. 27 in a bulletin to 18,000 state and local law enforcement agencies.

The bulletin did not describe any potential targets or cities, and repeated that the FBI had no specific timing or method of such an attack.

Ridge recently said the attack time frame could extend beyond the campaign season to the Jan. 20 presidential inauguration.

GOP: Reality a forgery

Republican experts doubt the authenticity of reality

Washington - Congressional Republicans turned the heat on reality today, charging that four years of revelations about President Bush's record are based on millions of fake documents and false reports.

"It's very clear that reality has been forged. Somebody has been giving everyone a steady stream of false information for four years now," said Sen. Robert Bennett, R-Utah.

Forty members of the House signed a letter accusing television networks, newspapers, magazines, websites, and private conversations of deception. The letter asked for a whistleblower to step forward to reveal reality's source.

"I think at the very least that the source of George W. Bush's record, and reality as a whole, should step forward," said Rep. Roy Blunt, R-Missouri.

In a related development, reality released a statement renewing its defense of itself.

Thursday, September 23, 2004


What's the book on this? It's one thing for a sitting President to tell Americans that the media lies to them whenever they hear that Iraq is a disaster. It must be quite another to bring a foreign leader to the White House and encourage him to say the same thing. The message is "don't believe the free press, believe me." It's sick and vaguely treasonous.
Although, this is not what you see in your media, it is a fact.

I have noticed -- and the media have been neglected and omitted several times -- in the Western media

So, really, I call upon the responsible media -- throughout the world, not only here -- to look at the facts as they are in Iraq and to propagate these facts to the international community.

Although this is not what we see in your media, it is a fact. [to Congress]


Grateful Dead members, in Rolling Stone, thru B3.
The front page is filled with Iraq, terrorism, the deficit, all these giant threats. It's like we've got a bad CEO. Nothing personal, Mr. Bush, but I don't think you're running this country well. I think you're running it into the ground, and it's my personal opinion that we need a regime change. You're fired. That's all. Nothing personal, man. Maybe we'll go out and have a glass of wine sometime and talk about it after the election. He might be a charming guy. But, boy, is he a fucked CEO. - [Hart] ----

Harry Truman said that the one crime more heinous than treason is war profiteering, and yet we have the company that our vice president is still on retainer to - which is illegal - making a huge fortune. Every time the terrorists blow up another pipeline over there, Halliburton makes millions of dollars pasting it back together. They don't even have to be pumping oil to be making money. This is who owns our government now.

Though I've never really endorsed a political candidate before, I'm going to have to this time. I liked the look in Kerry's eye when I met him. He looks like an aware human being and a guy with a sense of humor. So we're just going to have to hope and pray that the debates go well. --- [Weir] ----


The Senator from Minnesota refused to attend the Allawi speech to Congress today. This is the same hero who was the only one to speak up about the 9/11 Whitewash commission, particularly the glossing of NORAD's failures and subsequent lies. This is how a good person conducts himself on behalf of the American people.

Any Democrat who applauded this evil puppet liar should be ashamed:

"Today, we are better off, you are better off, the world is better off without Saddam Hussein," Allawi said. "Your decision to go into Iraq was not an easy one, but it was the right one."

Those words were met by regular, warm applause and standing ovations from both Republicans and Democrats.


The Cartel can't even get airport security right. A government report turned out "poor" results after undercover agents got weapons and explosives onto planes. Those explosive detection devices can't cost anywhere near enough to prevent their use in all major airports.

Still, we're safe from the guy who donated money to the 9/11 victims, who was stopped cold at the Bangor airport. Coincidentally, the Smirker will be at the Bangor airport today... but no Democrats allowed, as usual.


As usual, with regard to standards, forcing a race to the bottom.

Also at MSNBC, we find an online poll wherein 96% of the respondents think Americans should be able to buy Rx drugs from Canada. Online polls are often meaningless, but usually the Bush legions will chime in to create some parity. They either don't know, or don't care that their boy blocks reimportaion.

This reminds us that there are a few anti-Bush issues on which all or most Americans can agree: reimportation of drugs, saying no to media conglomeration, censoring photos of military coffins, assault weapons ban .. and ... what are we forgetting? Kerry could maybe hammer some of these a little more, mainly because they are simple and help draw a clear contrast.

Even though the president has a slight lead in this poll, when voters were asked what they would want in a second term for Bush, 58 percent say they want major changes, compared with only 9 percent who say they want his second term to look a lot like his first term.


They ought to see this page. The Ivan path was predicted, and very slightly off, but the real path hit serious Bush territory nonetheless - and certainly left Dem Florida alone. This is really kind of an amazing image. [via Incoming Signals]

UPDATE: Well, it's not Ratherworld but this image is not very accurate. The paths of the hurricanes are conveniently laced through GOP counties but, hey, like Dan knows, even if the document is fake, the content can still be true.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

[Newsweek Assistant Managing Editor Evan Thomas]: There's one other base here, the media. Let's talk a little media bias here. The media, I think, wants Kerry to win and I think they're going to portray Kerry and Edwards I'm talking about the establishment media, not Fox. They're going to portray Kerry and Edwards as being young and dynamic and optimistic and there's going to be this glow about them, collective glow, the two of them, that's going to be worth maybe 15 points.


We made a crude response before we saw a copy. Here's what it looks like.


The E-voting watchdogs are still hoping to get through to someone:

Experts showed ways they could alter vote totals without a password, record a vote for one candidate as a vote for another, or simply erase the vote totals completely.

They also showed a video of a chimpanzee hitting two computer keys -- "delete" and "enter" -- to erase records that vote totals had been altered. ...

... A pale-looking man named John Kenny said he was on a hunger strike until the election to publicize the issue. He said he had lost 12 pounds so far.


CNN's Jack Cafferty: "How can this trial take -- I mean, Peterson is going to die of old age before they get through with this thing? ... I mean, how can it take this long? Nonsense." Yeah, that justice thing, what a bunch of nonsense.

Then he goes to this:
Joe Lockhart, a high ranking member of the Kerry campaign team was all over the news yesterday, including on this program, explaining that, yes, he talked to Bill Burkett, the man responsible for giving those phony documents to CBS. ...

... But Lockhart insists they didn't discuss those documents in question. It was just all about the weather and, you know, who was going to win the Orioles series.

One things for sure, there is a lot of damage to go around.
This cranky and shallow bastard has no business being flip about what Lockhart said, which was that Burkett wanted to offer strategic ideas and made the conversation a condition of handing over the documents. That's a lot more believable than the weather and the Orioles.

COSTELLO: If you thought you heard the last of the Janet Jackson Super Bowl incident, oh, think again. The SEC will issue a final ruling on it today. Some CBS stations are facing some big record-setting fines -- Chad.

CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Are we done with that story yet?


Biden can often be too moderate, being a big corporation state Senator and all. Last night he was striking, despite all the ham-handed editing imposed by Zahn's show. She always does that. Her show is filled with jarring cutaways and slashed up tape. Here's some of what Joe said:
ZAHN: Given how heated the tensions are around this issue, can you explain to us tonight why John Kerry has the numbers he has when it comes to the public trust in him vs. the president to control the situation in Iraq? They have much greater faith in the president than they do in John Kerry.

BIDEN: You know, I know this is going to sound corny to you. That's above my pay grade. That's about politics. I'm talking about substance. I don't care what John Kerry's number is.

I care about the kids that we have sitting over there. I don't give a damn whether John Kerry wins or loses or George Bush wins or loses. All I know is, this entire program to try to win the peace in Iraq is, in fact, going down the drain, because the president keeps saying stay the course, instead of change the course. What is the plan, Mr. President? I don't care whether you win or lose. ...

... The secretary of defense said in February on your program, we've trained 210,000 people. I told you then that was malarkey. Last Friday, he said we've trained 95,000 Iraqis. That is malarkey. He said we trained 32,000 Iraqi policemen. Not one single solitary Iraqi policeman has completed the 24-week training program, not one single solitary one.

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