Sunday, April 16, 2006

Conferencing

Conference on World Affairs - Boulder, April 10 - 14

Having hosted the conference for its 58th year, this is something the University of Colorado can be proud of. When a student, I used to go see some of the speakers and panelists invited to address a variety of subjects, both serious and whimsical. The most memorable speaker from my youth Norman Thomas, considered the father of American socialism. He had an impact upon my parentally induced Republican mind set. You might want to go to the above bio link to get a sense of his significance. For example:

"A pacifist, Thomas believed that the First World War was an 'immoral, senseless struggle among rival imperialisms'. His brother shared his views and went to prison for resisting the draft. Thomas joined with Abraham Muste, Scott Nearing and Oswald Garrison Villard to form the Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR). In 1917 Thomas, Crystal Eastman and Roger Baldwin established the National Civil Liberties Bureau (NCLB).

"In 1918 he founded and edited the World Tomorrow and two years later joined with Jane Addams, Elizabeth Gurley Flynn and Upton Sinclair to establish the American Civil Liberties Union. As well as being associate editor of the Nation (1921-22), he was co-director of the League of Industrial Democracy (1922-37) and a frequent contributor to its journal, The Unemployed (1930-32)."

When I heard Thomas speak, he must've been in his 70s. He was one of those people who spoke with a clarity of both heart and mind. I knew I was in the presence of a significant person. We could use him now.

Liberty vs Security

I didn't know Norman Thomas helped found the ACLU. On Wednesday, it was fitting for me to listen to the current President of the ACLU, Anthony Romero, give a keynote address in the same auditorium in which I heard Mr. Thomas nearly five decades before. Romero also struck me as a man of both conviction and compassion. In fact, I just reached for the invitation to join the ACLU that's been resting at the back of my tickler file for several months. (The ACLU membership has increased dramatically under Herr Bush.)

Mr. Romero said the greatest achievement of his tenure as the ACLU head was to have two ACLU attorneys file a Freedom of Information Request that obtained 100,000 pages of US documents related to torture under the Torquemada inspired BushCo regime. Thankfully, he cited only a few of the "mild" techniques conducted in the name of democracy and freedom. One was soaking a victim's hands in alcohol and setting them afire. Not quite the low key torture described by von Rumsfeld -- rather, it serves as war crimes evidence.

Homeland (In)Security

This panel discussion was worthwhile if only for the clear contrast between the Nazis and progressives. Gordon Adams and Kim Thachuk spoke about the pointlessness of hyping fear in the name of terrorism, while Robert Kaufman and Jim Woolsey (ex-CIA Director and rodent-like supporter of all things BushCo) strove to keep us very afraid while applauding preemptive attacks.

Playing the Game -- National Culture and Superpower Politics

This was, for me, an intriguing presentation by Simon Hoggart who writes for the Guardian and Spectator. His quick British wit brought a different light to a heavy subject. For starters, he passed out a poem, Vitai Lampada, by Sir Henry Newbolt. It was written in 1897 at the time of the Boer War.

By good fortune, I sat next to a British expatriate of greater vintage than me. He started to look at the poem we were sharing and said, "Oh, I know this by heart . . . I learned it as a boy."

Cleverly, Hoggart spoke of the British empire at the time the poem was written and, by implication, related it to the American empire and how all things pass. Each stanza of the short poem ended with the encouragement -- when under athletic or military duress -- to "'Play up! play up! and play the game!'" By the time Hoggart got to discussing the last stanza, he ended by saying, "Of course, we know this is all horseshit." This struck both me and the Ex-Brit beside me as quite hysterical.

Philosophies of Peace and Just Wars

This was the best panel discussion I attended. The panel was diverse, passionate, intelligent and empathetic to one another. Jacob Gelt Dekker, an entrepreneur/philanthropist from the Netherlands was adamant that there was no excuse for war. The other panelists weren't so sure.

Sue Swenson is an advocate for the disabled and has an impressive resume. She had a statistic that was new to me. Because of the body armor now worn by soldiers, she said that for every military death in Iraq, 12 to 16 wounded soldiers suffer permanent disabilities (e.g. lost limbs). By my figuring, that would be about 35,000 men and women.

Jim Smith, a retired brigadier general, pleasantly surprised me. After 9/11, he read the Quran through in order to better understand Muslims. And during the discussions, he frequently stressed the importance of diplomacy and understanding the points of view of others.

I particularly was intrigued by Achim Koddermann, who teaches philosophy at the State University of New York in Oneonta. His grasp of history was impressive. In answering a question from the audience, he agreed that a UN failing is the emphasis on the importance of sovereignty and the use of the Security Council as a kind of escape valve for sovereign nations to get their way.

Just last weekend, I watched the Nicholas Cage film, Lord of War, about an arms dealer. At one point, early in the film, Cage says something like, "I think the AK 47 Kalashnikov (sp?) submachine gun is the real weapon of mass destruction in the world." He says this because of their numbers, excellence and availability. At the end of the film, just before the credits, two items appear on the screen: "These five countries are the largest weapons dealers in the world: US, UK, Russia (I think), France and China." Next frame: "They are all members of the Security Council." The juxtaposition of the film's thrust and Koddermann's ideas give me pause.

A highlight human moment came when Koddermann couldn't answer a question about Islam that came from the audience. Without a hitch, Achim said he didn't have the answer but would defer to a fellow he recognized in the audience, Mohammad J. Mahallati. By way of introduction, he ascribed to Mahallati, an Iranian, credit for being significantly instrumental in bringing peace between Iraq and Iran in the 80s.

While Mahallati was answering the question, I looked to see if he was a speaker at the Conference. He was, and I saw that he was Iran's ambassador to the United Nations from 1987 to 1989. And there was also a blurb describing how widely published he is and that "his writings deal primarily with interfaith peacemaking and bridge-building between civilizations." His demeanor reflected his credentials, and, not that I needed it, I was reminded of what a wonderful benefit the Conference is to the country.

Jazz night

Another highlight was the Wednesday night jazz concert under the direction of Dave and Don Grusin, two Colorado born musicians of international fame. One of our readers took music lessons with the brothers when she was a child. Dave Grusin has composed the theme music for numerous films. The night was a beautiful expression of the human spirit. The musicians, both local and international, were superb.

Etc.

The only glaring negative for me came Wednesday morning when my friend and I first arrived on campus. We were walking toward the student union and were in front of Mackey auditorium. At that venue, they have speakers broadcasting the proceedings to the quadrangle in front of the building. I've no idea who was speaking, but as we walked, a slovenly looking student who looked like he should've been skateboarding outside a mall, shouted toward the auditorium, "F**k you! I listen to Fox News!" I turned to my friend and said, "I'll bet he does." The lad would have been quite comfortable at Hitler youth rallies in the last century.

Another plus -- on Monday, while walking with the same fellow in front of the university library, I read a quote I've often used. It's inscribed above the entrance to the Norlin library: "Who knows only his own generation remains always a child." I turned and commented to my friend, "I've always wondered who said that." An elderly gentleman walking crisply by responded, "Cicero."

This morning, we finished watching the excellent DVD, Good Night and Good Luck. It begins and ends with Lowell Thomas giving a speech at a 1958 professional dinner. In the speech, Thomas speaks of both the promise and the blight of television. If used properly, television could inform the public, as was done by CBS, to help bring down a dangerous fanatic like Joe McCarthy. Or it could become what it is now, a medium that presents fictional, low budget programming as reality, while a dangerous reality operates unchecked and underreported at the behest of corporate interests who use television programming , as Bill Maher recently said, as a vehicle for commercials. How does the adjunct to the Cicero quote go? "Those who ignore history are condemned to repeat it." Something like that. "Good luck", indeed! "Good night, and lights out, suckers!" is more like it.

If you're in the vicinity of Boulder next April, try to make some time for the 59th edition of the Conference.

Asleep all over America

"Some people are seriously suggesting that the Constitution should be ignored, because it puts people's rights above Presidential power. Can Americans truly be this stupid?"
His shrinking base certainly is.

News whiteout

"But with plummeting poll numbers, an unraveling war and ethics probes in the top ranks of his party, Bush's almost-legendary sway over much of the White House press corps seems to be fraying. No longer can he and his aides invoke the specter of the war on terror to fend off tricky questions and silence critics."

Spending is out of control

"The Roman Republic fell for many reasons, but three seem particularly relevant for our times: (1) declining moral and ethical values and political comity at home, (2) over confidence and over extension abroad, and (3) fiscal irresponsibility by the central government. All these are certainly matters of significant concern today. But it is the third area that is the focus of my responsibility and authority as Comptroller General, the nation’s top auditor and chief accountability officer."

On Tuesday morning I caught part of a speech by David Walker, Comptroller General of the United States on C-Span. During his speech there was a reference to the cited article in Business Week, November 14, 2005. Listening to Mr Walker was like having someone open the window to let in fresh air. If you like "Spending is Out of Control", you might want to read his speech, "America's Fiscal Future" that I heard, in part, on Tuesday.

Government spending hit record high in March

"In its monthly accounting of the government’s books, the Treasury Department reported Wednesday that federal spending totaled $250 billion last month, up 13.7 percent from March 2005."

At the Conference I attended "The Day the Dollar Crashes". The four panelists didn't question a crash in the US. It was a matter of when, and they seemed to agree it would come in three to five years. I'm thinking sooner.

A cozy arrangement

"Last Sunday The Times reported that in 2004, the average top executive at a big company earned 170 times the average worker's pay. These executives receive a dizzying combination of salaries, bonuses and stock grants. And their perks can go far beyond the use of a company car to even include infusions of cash to offset the taxes everyone else is expected to pay."

In the 80s, the average was about 18 times the lowest worker's pay.

In 2005, Exxon CEO raked in 190K a day

"Average Americans are struggling to keep up with persistently high gas prices, now approaching $3 a gallon. Testifying before Congress last November, Exxon CEO Lee Raymond blamed the problem on 'global supply and demand' and assured the public that 'we’re all in this together.'"

What recovery?

"The president’s budget for 2007 calls for another $1.7 trillion in tax cuts over the next 10 years, well over the amount of fictional spending cuts they pretend will reduce the deficit. Republican leaders on the Hill echo the need to lock in the tax changes since 2001, on the grounds that they have given us a strong economy."

Meet Mr. Republican: Jack Abramoff - The secret history of the most corrupt man in Washington

"En route to his day of reckoning, Abramoff really did travel each and every right-wing highway, from Jo-burg in the old days to the Bush White House. But he's being sentenced for only the last few miles of that trip. It's almost an insult to a criminal of Abramoff's caliber that the charge he'll go to jail for is a low-rent wire-fraud scheme committed in a pickpocket capital like Miami Beach. In that one, Jack and his cronies claimed to have $23 million in assets when he didn't have a dime, and he persuaded financial backers to purchase a $147.5 million cruise-ship casino empire. A nice score for a Gotti child, maybe, but a bit gauche for the wizard of the Republican fast lane."

Proposed pension bill opens escape hatch for reluctant providers

"But labor groups and some analysts predict the reform legislation will in many ways hurt more than it will help, by insufficiently addressing corporate abuses, undermining the power of unions to advocate for better benefits, and in the long run, making the pension system so financially unpalatable as to drive companies away from offering pensions altogether."

Phone-jamming records point to White House

"Key figures in a phone-jamming scheme designed to keep New Hampshire Democrats from voting in 2002 had regular contact with the White House and Republican Party as the plan was unfolding, phone records introduced in criminal court show."

In the Walker speech referenced above, Mr. Walker referenced several deficits the nation had to face; the last he mentioned was a "leadership deficit". Having criminals run the country (into the ground) seems somehow inappropriate.

Leak investigation puts spotlight on Bush war lies

"The document filed last Wednesday by special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald adds to the considerable body of evidence that President Bush and Vice President Cheney systematically lied to the American people before, during and after the US invasion of Iraq in March-April 2003."

A bad leak

"And this president has never shown the slightest interest in disclosure, except when it suits his political purposes. He has run one of the most secretive administrations in American history, consistently withholding information and vital documents not just from the public, but also from Congress. Just the other day, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales told the House Judiciary Committee that the names of the lawyers who reviewed Mr. Bush's warrantless wiretapping program were a state secret."

Cheney authorized leak of CIA report, Libby says

"Vice President Dick Cheney directed his then-chief of staff, I. Lewis 'Scooter' Libby, on July 12, 2003 to leak to the media portions of a then-highly classified CIA report that Cheney hoped would undermine the credibility of former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson, a critic of the Bush administration's Iraq policy, according to Libby's grand jury testimony in the CIA leak case and sources who have read the classified report."

All the president's leaks

"Besides, since the president can authorize the declassification of anything he chooses to declassify, he can't be involved in anything untoward. 'This was not a leak,' Joseph diGenova, a top Republican lawyer, told the New York Sun's Josh Gerstein. 'This was an authorized disclosure.' Ah, yes, it depends on what the meaning of the word 'leak' is. That sounds familiar, doesn't it?"

The Iraq war and the eruption of American imperialism - Part One

"In September 2002, with the decision to invade Iraq having already been made, the Bush administration published its National Security Strategy (NSS). This document set out clearly and unambiguously that the United States was now reserving to itself the right to use military force pre-emptively in pursuit of its national interests and objectives on a global scale."

The Iraq war and the eruption of American imperialism - Part Two

"Likewise, none of the major capitalist powers, whatever the political colouration of their governments, can abandon their own colonial ambitions. Nor can they back down on the free market agenda that requires the destruction of social services and working conditions as they compete for global markets and investment funds."

Entire Bush team needs replacement

"The undatelined photo from wherever it was our nominal president happened to be that day, showed a woman holding up a sign bearing the following message: 'Will Someone Please Give Bush a B--- J-- So We Can Impeach Him?'

"The message was a subtle reminder that it was a sexual act that got Bush's predecessor impeached, and a not-so-subtle reminder that Bush's numerous and far more egregious impeachable acts that have cost America thousands of lost and ruined lives and billions in treasure have so far gone unpunished."

'On the possibility of a military coup in the Unites States of America'

"Ironically, this self-granting of limitless powers in turn has now manifested itself in an inverse power vacuum being created at the decision making level that is now becoming more and more visible with each passing day. Despite the fact that American nation seems to understand more than any other nation that the armed forces exist to support and defend government, not to be the government, yet faced with an intractable national problem on the one hand, and having an efficient and capable military on the other, it is all too enticing to start viewing the military as a gainful solution or as the 'ultimate saviors' a la certain banana republics where the military does indeed call the shots."

Since the government currently bears a marked resemblance to those of banana republics, maybe this isn't a far fetched idea.

Third retired general wants Rumsfeld out

"The three-star Marine Corps general who was the military's top operations officer before the invasion of Iraq expressed regret, in an essay published Sunday, that he did not more energetically question those who had ordered the nation to war. He also urged active-duty officers to speak out now if they had doubts about the war."

Generals clamor for Rumsfeld's ouster over Iraq war

"Retired Marine Corps Gen. Anthony Zinni added to the pressure for Rumsfeld's scalp by telling CNN that Rumsfeld should be held accountable for a series of blunders, starting with 'throwing away 10 years worth of planning, plans that had taken into account what we would face in an occupation of Iraq.'"

Desert rats leave the sinking ship: Why Rumsfeld should not resign

"Yes, Rumfeld is a swaggering bag of mendacious arrogance, a duplicitous chicken-hawk, yellow-bellied bully-boy and Tinker-Toy Napoleon -- but he didn't appoint himself Secretary of Defense."

Behind the military revolt

"These generals are not newly minted doves or covert Democrats. (In fact, one of the main reasons this public explosion did not happen earlier was probably concern by the generals that they would seem to be taking sides in domestic politics.) They are career men, each with more than 30 years in service, who swore after Vietnam that, as Colin Powell wrote in his memoirs, 'when our turn came to call the shots, we would not quietly acquiesce in half-hearted warfare for half-baked reasons.' Yet, as Newbold admits, it happened again. In the public comments of the retired generals one can hear a faint sense of guilt that, having been taught as young officers that the Vietnam-era generals failed to stand up to Defense Secretary Robert McNamara and President Lyndon Johnson, they did the same thing."

Now Powell tells us

"On Monday, former Secretary of State Colin Powell told me that he and his department's top experts never believed that Iraq posed an imminent nuclear threat, but that the president followed the misleading advice of Vice President Dick Cheney and the CIA in making the claim. Now he tells us."

George W. Bush is a liar

"But the truth is that Bush has been caught, again and again, relying on lies and distortions to confuse the American people about the Iraq War. Sometimes, he can blame U.S. intelligence agencies for the false information, but other times, he simply lies about facts that he personally knows."

New report: Rumsfeld 'personally involved' in torture allegations at Gitmo

"Rumsfeld developed an interrogation plan that required the Gitmo detainee to 'stand naked in front of a female interrogator, was accused of being a homosexual, and was forced to wear women’s underwear and to perform ‘dog tricks’ on a leash.' Schmidt said that the open-ended policies Rumsfeld approved, and that the apparent lack of supervision of day-to-day interrogations permitted the wide-scale abuse to take place."

Don, you're doin' a heck of a job!

Global Eye

"What these influential warmongers openly call for is the 'pacification' of Baghdad: a brutal firestorm by U.S. forces, ravaging both Sunni insurgents and Shiite militias in a 'horrific' operation that will inevitably lead to 'skyrocketing body counts,' as warhawk Reuel Marc Gerecht cheerfully wrote last week in the ever-bloodthirsty editorial pages of The Wall Street Journal. Gerecht's war whoop quickly ricocheted around the right-wing media echo chamber and gave public voice to the private counsels emanating from a group whose members now comprise the leadership of the U.S. government: The Project for the New American Century."

If you want to get as mad as hell and won't take it anymore, read this one.

Three years after Saddam's fall, US report says Iraq is in turmoil

"A confidential assessment of the security situation across Iraq carried out by US officials has portrayed a country beset by violence and sectarian division and where the stability of six of its 18 provinces is considered 'serious' and one is said to be 'critical'."

On Monday, at the Conference on World Affairs, one of the sessions I attended was Homeland (In)Security. A panel member, the right wing hack, Robert Kaufman, said "George Bush has done the right thing in bringing a stable democracy to Iraq." The very large audience, to its credit, broke out in spontaneous laughter and catcalls.

The al Qaeda myth

"We now know that Al Qaeda had nothing to do with the London bombings in July 2005. This is the conclusion of the British government's official inquiry report leaked to the British press on April 9. "We now also know that the U.S. military is deliberately misleading Iraqis, Americans and the rest of the world about the extent of Al Qaeda's involvement in the Iraqi insurgency. This was reported in The Washington Post on April 10, on the basis of internal military documents seen by that newspaper."

Spain indicts 29, sees no al-Qaida connection

"A Spanish judge issued the first indictments in the 2004 Madrid train bombings, charging 29 people Tuesday with murder, terrorism or other crimes after a probe that uncovered a hornet's nest of Islamic militancy but no apparent link to al-Qaida."

The week the Bush administration fell apart: End game for the lizard brains?

"Of course, we see Bush as Top Lizard Brain. The Leaker-in-Chief can barely speak without notes (often, even with them), unless in some sort of bullying snit or that other smug 'we can do and take anything we want; we're the superpower and we're in charge; I've got political capital' awfulness. Whenever the home team is on a losing streak, the manager starts to get incoming from the fans and the always slow-to-awaken, if not complicit rah, rah hometown booster media (think Portland Trailblazers). Of course, even as a Giant Lizard goes down, a lot of damage can be done by the thrashing tail before it's forever silenced."

White House whopper becomes instant classic

"If I understand what McClellan is saying, Bush leaked bad information from a classified intelligence report because there wasn't enough time for the contradictory DIA report to go through a declassification process. All of which would make more sense if we hadn't just gone through this Valerie Plame episode, where the White House says if the president leaked it, then it's legal to leak it. No problem, the president can declassify at will, they said. I don't know about you, but none of it is becoming clearer for me. Does anyone understand why we have to bomb Iran yet?"

Report raises new questions on Bush, WMDs

"The Washington Post reported that a Pentagon-sponsored team of experts determined in May 2003 that two small trailers were not used to make biological weapons. Yet two days after the team sent its findings to Washington in a classified report, Bush declared just the opposite.
'''We have found the weapons of mass destruction,' Bush said in an interview with a Polish TV station. 'We found biological laboratories.'"

US threats against Iran - the specter of nuclear barbarism

"US imperialism has embarked upon a trajectory that will, if not stopped, lead to a world historic catastrophe that will make World War II pale by comparison."

Iran can now make glowing Mickey Mouse watches

"The ability to slightly enrich uranium is not the same as the ability to build a bomb. For the latter, you need at least 80% enrichment, which in turn would require about 16,000 small centrifuges hooked up to cascade. Iran does not have 16,000 centrifuges. It seems to have 180. Iran is a good ten years away from having a bomb, and since its leaders, including Supreme Jurisprudent Ali Khamenei, say they do not want an atomic bomb because it is Islamically immoral, you have to wonder if they will ever have a bomb."

Democracy be damned - Republicans need another war

"So, too, it appears that Bush is now ginning up a new war just in time for the 2006 midterm elections, and Karl Rove probably has a 2007 continuing war in mind to help swing the 2008 elections (or postpone them)."

Neocons turn up heat for Iran attack

"In a veritable blitz of editorials and opinion pieces published Wednesday and Thursday, the Wall Street Journal, the Weekly Standard, and National Review warned that Tehran had passed a significant benchmark in what they declared was its quest for nuclear weapons and that the administration must now plan in earnest to destroy Iran's known nuclear facilities, as well as possible military targets, to prevent it from retaliating."

Britain took part in mock Iran invasion

"British officers took part in a US war game aimed at preparing for a possible invasion of Iran, despite repeated claims by the foreign secretary, Jack Straw, that a military strike against Iran is inconceivable.

"The war game, codenamed Hotspur 2004, took place at the US base of Fort Belvoir in Virginia in July 2004."

Retired colonel claims US military operations are already 'underway' in Iran

"'I would say -- and this may shock some -- I think the decision has been made and military operations are under way,' Col. Gardiner told CNN International anchor Jim Clancy (as noted by Digby at the blog Hullabaloo)."

The human cost of bombing Iran

"Physicians for Social Responsibility examined the risks of a more advanced buster-bunker weapon, and it eerily tabulated the toll from an attack on the underground nuclear facility in Esfahan, Iran. 'Three million people would be killed by radiation within two weeks of the explosion, and 35 million people in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India, would be exposed to increased levels of cancer-causing radiation,' according to a summary of that study in the backgrounder by the Union of Concerned Scientists."

Yes, but it would be a small price to pay for bringing freedom and democracy to the downtrodden Iranians.

The nuclear bunker buster (Informative animation)

America's secret police?

"A threatened turf grab by a controversial Pentagon intelligence unit is causing concern among both privacy experts and some of the Defense Department’s own personnel."

I can't see von Rumsfeld doing anything so dastardly. Can you?

AT&T seeks to hide spy docs

"AT&T is seeking the return of technical documents presented in a lawsuit that allegedly detail how the telecom giant helped the government set up a massive internet wiretap operation in its San Francisco facilities."

Crunch weeks ahead for Europe's CIA probes

"'We have received official acknowledgement of 'handing over' individuals to foreign officials' in violation of the European Convention on Human Rights, Council head Terry Davis said, declining to name the country involved."

Spare the taxpayer, spur the economy, save the planet

'''As Americans are filing their income taxes, many of their counterparts in several European countries are benefiting from a steady decline in income taxes as governments lower taxes on income and raise taxes on environmentally destructive activities,'' said Lester Brown, president of the Earth Policy Institute, a think tank here."

Quotes from www.barctcop.com:

"On matters of war, Bush is not to be trusted. He has proven over and over that when he wants to go to war, the truth will not stand in his way." -- Scott Shields, on Iran nuking up in 13 days, Link

"The CIA was pushing the aluminum tube argument heavily and Cheney went with that instead of what our guys wrote. That was a big mistake. It should never have been in the speech. I didn’t need Wilson to tell me that there wasn’t a Niger connection. He didn’t tell us anything we didn’t already know. I never believed it." -- Colin Powell, discovering honesty now that 2375 soldiers are dead, Link

"It's like having Goober from Mayberry as president of the United States." -- timregler, Link

"I voted for Bush, and I don't have anything to disapprove of. I think the results of what is happening [in Iraq] is disappointing, but it doesn't have to do with the President. I just think he underestimated where we were going." - former liberal Dennis Hopper, who went dark several years ago Link

"...we should still have a preference for peace over war. I always thought of Senator Fulbright and the terrible quagmire in Vietnam and how many times we sent more soldiers and found ourselves in a hole and kept digging because we didn't want to look like we were weak. So anytime somebody said in my presidency, 'If you don't do this people will think you're weak,' I always asked the same question for eight years: 'Can we kill 'em tomorrow? If we can kill 'em tomorrow, then we're not weak, and we might be wise enough to try to find an alternative way.'" -- Big Dog, on his decisions when to launch a military strike Link

"I know some of you may want to just hold your noses, but please vote for him anyway!" -- Renee Amoore, PA GOP co-chair, on Rick Santorum, Link

"I knew exactly what was going to happen when I committed these troops into harm's way. I knew people would lose their life. I knew exactly what was coming." -- President Monkey in a Man Suit Link

"He knows exactly what happens to young men in war. That's why he dodged 'Nam." -- SlimTim, Link

"Overall, 63% of Americans believe Bush did something either illegal or unethical. The poll found Bush's approval rating remains unchanged at 37%." -- Taegan, Link

Cheney told Libby to pass information to reporters from classified documents. One striking feature of that decision is that the evidence they selected to share with reporters had been disproved months before." -- Barton Gellman Link

"What did Ashcroft know when he recused himself from the leak investigation? Did he know the investigation was getting close to Bush, Cheney, Libby and Rove?" -- E. J. Dionne, sometimes honest, Link

"Bush has not yet been held accountable for any of his actions over the past 5 years. Why start now? He knows that the press, which has enabled his lying and political backstabbing, will never hold him accountable because to do so would be to expose their complicity in this disastrous government. The Republicans are telling us to move forward, when every act they take moves us backwards." -- fez, Link

"I wanted people to see the truth and thought it made sense for people to see the truth..." -- by far, the most secretive president in history Link

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