ARC's 1st Law: As a "progressive" online discussion grows longer, the probability of a nefarious reference to Karl Rove approaches one

Saturday, December 17, 2005

BUSH ADMINISTRATION SPYING ON AMERICANS!!!!!

At least, any Americans that happens to communicate regularly with terrorists abroad... (Don't go to MTV to get that perspective, though.)

Like this guy.

NSA's "special collection program" nabbed terrorist plotter Iyman Faris

Faris admitted to traveling to New York City in late 2002 to examine the bridge, and said he concluded that the plot to destroy the bridge by severing cables was unlikely to succeed because of the bridge’s security and structure. In early 2003, he sent a message that “the weather is too hot” - a coded message indicating that the bridge plot was unlikely to succeed.

So, you know... slippery slope and all that....

(Frankly, if an Al Qaeda terrorist were to pick up the phone and give me a ring, I WOULD WANT THE NSA TO BE LISTENING TO EVERY @#$ING WORD OF MY CONVERSATION WITH THEM!!!!)

Do Shumer, Leahy, and Kennedy, and the editorial board of the NYTimes think that Faris's civil liberties have been violated? Should all charges against him be dropped on this technicality?

And it's interesting to note that Congress and the special court is notified of each such intercept (after the fact)... The only part that busts my libertarian sensibilities (I've been known to have a few) is the possibility that the government would do an intercept and not notify Congress. But, then again... if they're going to break the law and the executive order by not notifying Congress after the fact, it's unlikely that they'd follow the law on getting a warrant beforehand. If they really are breaking the law, why go to Congress?

As pointed out by an intelligence researcher on Fox News' Special Report with Brit Hume Jim Angle, these steps were only taken when seeking approval and a warrant in advance would compromise the ability to intercept the information. But the Times seems to think that we should let Osama chat with someone here in the US for a few hours before we start to listen in:
The standard of proof required to obtain a warrant from the foreign intelligence court is generally considered lower than that required for a criminal warrant - intelligence officials only have to show probable cause that someone may be "an agent of a foreign power," which includes international terrorist groups - and the secret court has turned down only a small number of requests over the years. In 2004, according to the Justice Department, 1,754 warrants were approved. The foreign intelligence court can grant emergency approval for wiretaps within hours, officials say.

Because, you know... Osama's and Al Qaeda get real chatty when they're planning a terrorist strike.

The USA PATRIOT Act should be extended... there may be provisions that should be modified. But roving wiretaps (a tool commonly employed against the Gambino crime family) certainly should be employed against terrorist suspects. (Roving Wiretaps = you get court authority to tap communications of an individual, not a specific device of an individual. Thus, regardless of whether the individuals uses 4 cell phones, a blackberry, a satellite phone, a land-line telephone, or two cans with a string, you can listen in.) This is a common sense measure and has little impact on civil liberties.

By the way, isn't it just amazing that while we're seeing victorious milestones in the War On Terror abroad, we're losing our nerve here at home?

Looks like the next step for the Moonbats (aka the Democratic Party leaders such as John "Flip-Flopper" Kerry) is to call for impeachment...

See Michelle Malkin, Jeff Goldstein, and Captain's Quarters(here and here), and Newsbusters for more.

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Friday, December 16, 2005

Will the Dems Stand by Their Rhetoric (This Time)?

As I pointed out on Wednesday, the Dems (fortunately) lost their opportunity to take command of our military when they lost the Presidential election in 2004. However, they continue to criticize our efforts in Iraq and fail to recognize our successes.

In my mind, they also lost their right to call for immediate withdrawal from Iraq when only 3 Democrats voted in the affirmative on the Duncan Hunter resolution (aka the "Murtha Proposal"). Despite their unwillingness to make their stand on the record, the Democrats continue to call for withdrawal from Iraq.

In response, the Republicans are going to have another vote on the matter, this time to establish the GOP support for not establishing an artificial timetable (which has been the refuge of the flip-floppers and Sunshine Patriots of the Left):

House GOP to Offer Vote on Iraq Pullout
By Richard Simon, Times Staff Writer

WASHINGTON — Ratcheting up the debate in Congress over the Iraq war, House Republicans will offer for a vote today a resolution declaring that setting an "artificial timetable" for the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq would be "inconsistent with achieving victory."

The resolution also expresses the commitment of the House to "achieving victory in Iraq" and praises Iraqis for participating in parliamentary elections Thursday, calling the vote "a crucial victory for the Iraqi people and Iraq's new democracy."

The resolution marks the second time in as many months that GOP leaders, facing eroding public support and growing Democratic criticism of the continuing instability in Iraq, have sought to strike back at critics of the war.

Last month, Republican leaders set off a furor in the House by bringing to the floor a resolution aimed at forcing critics to go on record on whether they supported the immediate pullout of U.S. troops. The measure was overwhelmingly defeated.

The measures have come as the debate in Congress over the war has intensified, partly in response to last month's call by Rep. John P. Murtha (D-Pa.), a longtime defense hawk and a former Marine, for the United States to start pulling troops out of Iraq, and as President Bush has received low marks in public opinion polls for his handling of Iraq.

The new resolution says that the "continued presence of United States Armed Forces in Iraq will be required only until Iraqi forces can stand up so our forces can stand down, and no longer than is required for that purpose," and that "setting an artificial timetable for the withdrawal of United States Armed Forces from Iraq, or immediately terminating their deployment in Iraq and redeploying them elsewhere in the region, is fundamentally inconsistent with achieving victory."

Rep. Adam B. Schiff (D-Burbank) said the section of the resolution dealing with how soon troops should be withdrawn "would seem to be deliberately written to maximize divisions within the Congress" at a time when Democrats and Republicans should be looking to find common ground on how to proceed on the war.

"What's the purpose of this kind of division?" he asked. "It doesn't help the war effort."

Schiff, who was among a group of Democrats invited to meet with President Bush at the White House this week to discuss the war, recalled last month's bitter debate on the House floor, saying, "The last thing we need to do is go through another divisive exercise on the House floor over Iraq."

Well, it's easy to avoid such "divisive" exercises... take your position on the floor of the House and then shut up. After you've voted, there's no need to continue discussing the matter or to revisit Weapons of Mass Destruction.

I think that the GOP should hold a vote such as this every week if necessary... If the Dems continue to undermine our efforts and embolden our enemies ad infinitum, the GOP should make sure they are presented with an opportunity to put their opposition in the Congressional record. Even Rep. Murtha didn't have the courage to support his position in the Congressional record.

It's important that the American public accurately understands the views of the Democratic party...

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Miracle on the Euphrates

If one of the goals was to bring representive government to Iraq, it looks like the goal has been met.

Amazing and wonderful.

A
nd who do we, and the Iraqis, have to thank?


Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: MontereyJohn

Dean and the Destruction of the Democratic Party

Howard Dean doesn't have many fans outside of the Kossacks, DUers, and MoreOn.Orgers Elected Democrats don't seem to be too pleased with his performance as Party chair:

Dean still gives Dems heartburn
By Peter Savodnik

Democrats are voicing concern that Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairman Howard Dean is compromising his party’s political prospects by straying on to controversial policy turf such as the Iraq war and Social Security reform.

These Democrats add that Dean should stick to the pledge he made after becoming chairman not to delve into party policy and to let office holders such as Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (Nev.) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) craft the Democrats’ agenda.

Democrats from conservative bastions are particularly sensitive to Dean’s recent remark that the United States cannot win the war in Iraq, which prompted Rep. Earl Pomeroy (D-N.D.) last week to tell the DNC chairman to “shut up.”

An aide close to the Democratic leadership on Capitol Hill said, “There were serious concerns when Gov. Dean took over that he understand what his role was and what it wasn’t. There were meetings with the congressional leadership and Mr. Dean where it was discussed and the governor implied that he understood what his role was and was not, that he was the mechanical part of the party, not the standard bearer or message person. Subsequently, there have been episodes that have been concerning.

Earlier this year, Dean startled some Democratic lawmakers by calling for the lifting of the cap on Social Security taxes which shields income above $90,000 a year from being taxed.

Doug Schoen, also a pollster, who worked for President Clinton and now works for Sen. Evan Bayh (D-Ind.), added: “I don’t think it helps the Democrats to have a party chairman who is involved in controversy. There’s so much work to be done organizationally, so much work to be done in terms of fundraising, that I think he would serve the Democratic Party best by focusing on the grass roots.”

Pollster David Beattie, whose clients include Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), said that he had worked in 31 states in the past five years, only seven of which were won by Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) in the 2004 presidential race.

“In the other 24, Dean is more of a hindrance than a help,” Beattie said.


Other Democrats, declining to speak for attribution, said Dean should focus on “party mechanics” and fundraising. The DNC has raised a little under $48 million in the 2005-2006 cycle compared to the Republican National Committee’s $89.1 million.

Unfortunately for the Dems, all of this could've been prevented. It was pretty evident that Howard Dean was not going to be a guy that focused on "party mechanics." No, he was going to be out front on policy issues. Despite the policy differences between Kerry and Dean during the 2004 primaries (bug out in 6 months vs. bug out now, respectively), it was clear that promoting Howard Dean from has-been Governor of Vermont and failed Presidential candidate was only going to encourage him to continue saying outrageously stupid things.

As MoveOn.Org said,... "Now it's our Party: we bought it, we own it, and we're going to take it back." Well, Howard Dean as the DNC Chair is the personification of that statement. And if the DNC and the Democratic leadership didn't like the sentiments expressed by MoveOn, they should've objected to Dean's ascention as vocally as they object to Bush's triumph in Iraq.

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Chimpy W. McHitlerBushton's War for Oil

Damn you Chimpy W. McHitlerBushton!!! How dare you impose liberty, equality, and democracy on peoples that just don't want it!!!

See Pajamas Media
throughout the day for live updates.

Look at this poor woman, forced to suppress her hatred for Western democracy...


Clearly Bush should be tried for War Crimes... He is the true terrorist!

*** UPDATE ***
See these roundups from Michelle Malkin and Mark in Mexico.

Also, this analysis of Biden in Baghdad by good buddy Jim Hoft, aka The Gateway Pundit. (Let's face facts... Biden may be many things (pretentious, indecisive, etc), but he's not stupid.)

and Austin Bay on The Great Revolt. Some key points he picks up from the LA Times coverage of this great event:

Key graf, and positioned near the top of the article:
“I am proud as an Iraqi because our country is becoming a center of attraction for all Arab countries,” said Mohammad Wadi, a 50-year-old Shiite schoolteacher casting his ballot in the capital’s Karada district. He added, “The new situation in Iraq, the democratic system, is starting to put pressure on the Arab systems to make some changes toward democracy.”
Another graf, which gives voice to the shift in Sunni attitudes some of us saw in 2004 :
Many Sunni voters today said they did not vote in January’s parliamentary election, either as part of a boycott out of security fears. Today, they voted with enthusiasm, mostly for one of several Sunni slates or the secular list led by former interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi.

“I didn’t vote in January because at the time the political realities were not clear,” said Abdul Samariyee, 65, a retired tax collector in Baghdad’s Qadasiya district, where police were spotted driving a pregnant woman to the polling station. “Now, Iraqis have begun to realize that the peaceful way is better than violence to get their demands.”


and finally, you can just sense the glee from the Left today as they celebrate this victorious triumph over totalitarianism. Apparently, they think those quoted above are simply sheeple under the spell of Karl Rove and the Bushies. Here's how things are being presented by the Twinkie-Meister Oliver Willis:
Great, the Iraqis had their election (after they essentially had to shut down the entire country again)… so can the troops come home now? Mission accomplished, and all that… (this is one of those Iraq Turning PointsTM)

Yeah, guess not.
Be sure to link over there and read the comments... Oliver's readers appear to like the Iranian elections better than what's happening in Iraq.

There's no mention of the news on DU, other than these posts attacking the justification for going to war and Bush's speech from yesterday.

The Kossacks are similarly mum... Other than this post cheering the Italians reducing the number of their soldiers in Iraq from 2,900 to 2,600.

No wonder the Lefties are against this war. When good news happens, they don't even know about it!!!

;-)

*** UPDATE 2 ***
Jeff at Protein Wisdom takes a similar look at the reaction of Lefty blogs. If they don't talk about it, it didn't happen!

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

The Democrats - Meeting Osama's Expectations

President Bush addressed this in part in today's speech and beat me to it, but I'm going to post this anyway...

The Democrats are fulfilling Osama Bin Laden's prophecy and living up to his expectations.

This is Osama from 1998:

After our victory in Afghanistan and the defeat of the oppressors who had killed millions of Muslims, the legend about the invincibility of the superpowers vanished. Our boys no longer viewed America as a superpower. So, when they left Afghanistan, they went to Somalia and prepared themselves carefully for a long war. They had thought that the Americans were like the Russians, so they trained and prepared. They were stunned when they discovered how low was the morale of the American soldier. America had entered with 30,000 soldiers in addition to thousands of soldiers from different countries in the world. ... As I said, our boys were shocked by the low morale of the American soldier and they realized that the American soldier was just a paper tiger. He was unable to endure the strikes that were dealt to his army, so he fled, and America had to stop all its bragging and all that noise it was making in the press after the Gulf War in which it destroyed the infrastructure and the milk and dairy industry that was vital for the infants and the children and the civilians and blew up dams which were necessary for the crops people grew to feed their families. Proud of this destruction, America assumed the titles of world leader and master of the new world order. After a few blows, it forgot all about those titles and rushed out of Somalia in shame and disgrace, dragging the bodies of its soldiers. America stopped calling itself world leader and master of the new world order, and its politicians realized that those titles were too big for them and that they were unworthy of them. I was in Sudan when this happened. I was very happy to learn of that great defeat that America suffered, so was every Muslim. ...

Howard Dean and John Murtha are calling for the US to act in accordance with Osama's view of the US.

While they (fortunately) don't control our military, their words do embolden our enemies - in Iraq and around the world. And here's a memo to the Democrats: They can earn the right to make these military decisions. However, this requires that they win at the ballot box (in the US, not Fallujah) and assume the role of Commander-In-Chief. Since they were unsuccessful doing this in 2004 and their "plans" for Iraq were rejected by the electorate, they should stop pushing for an American defeat in Iraq.

Despite continued criticism and low poll numbers, the President has not (and will not) change his strategery. He has reiterated the reasons for his strategy in transforming the Middle East in almost every foreign policy speech in the past 3 years, including the speech today and the one from Monday. Thus, it's important for the Democrats to realize that they are unlikely to persuade Bush to suddenly adopt their vision and pull out of Iraq. It is not going to happen. GIVEN THIS REALITY, it is time for the Democrats to live up to their claims of patriotism and support for the troops and give the President and our military every resource they can - including their vocal support for our mission and objectives in Iraq.

This piece by Norman Podhoretz in Commentary is a must read. Here's a key passage that he opens with:
Like, I am sure, many other believers in what this country has been trying to do in the Middle East and particularly in Iraq, I have found my thoughts returning in the past year to something that Tom Paine, writing at an especially dark moment of the American Revolution, said about such times. They are, he memorably wrote, “the times that try men’s souls,” the times in which “the summer soldier and the sunshine patriot” become so disheartened that they “shrink from the service of [their] country.”

But Paine did not limit his anguished derision to former supporters of the American War of Independence whose courage was failing because things had not been going as well on the battlefield as they had expected or hoped. In a less famous passage, he also let loose on another group:
’Tis surprising to see how rapidly a panic will sometimes run through a country. . . . Yet panics, in some cases, have their uses . . . . [T]heir peculiar advantage is, that they are the touchstones of sincerity and hypocrisy, and bring things and men to light, which might otherwise have lain for ever undiscovered.
Thus, he explained, “Many a disguised Tory has lately shown his head,” emboldened by the circumstances of the moment to reveal an opposition to the break with Britain that it had previously seemed prudent to conceal.

Now, Podhoretz points to many in the Democratic Party that fit these descriptions. Clearly, the Tories of today are Howard Dean, Nancy Pelosi, Cynthia McKinney, and the other nutjob Lefties in Congress. These are the people that openly opposed the war. While I disagree with their position and think they are foolish, these leaders are not the problem. This is because they are open about their objections and the public is free to judge them when they come up for re-election or make a statement.

No, far more destructive are the "Sunshine Patriots" (or "disguised Tories"). These are those in the Democratic Party that voted for the US incursion in Iraq, but now call for our retreat in the face of victory, turning America into the Paper Tiger that Osama so firmly believes us to be. Examples are John Kerry, John Murtha, and many others in the Democratic caucus. These "leaders" are far more destructive to our country than those that are outright opposed to the war. For they confuse the public and weaken our resolve. And the truly unfortunate thing is that for many of these Sunshine Patriots, the question of their support turns on relatively minor issues - pressure from far Left groups (such as International ANSWER, a front group for the Worldwide Workers' Party and Saddam's lawyer, Ramsey Clark) and even perceived slights from the President,
when Murtha tried to write George W. Bush with some suggestions for fighting the Iraq war, the congressman's letter was ignored by the White House (after waiting for seven months, Murtha received a polite kiss-off from a deputy under secretary of Defense). Murtha, who has always preferred to operate behind the scenes, finally went public, calling for an orderly withdrawal from Iraq. In the furor that followed, a White House spokesman compared the Vietnam War hero to "Michael Moore and the extreme liberal wing of the Democratic Party." When that approach backfired, President Bush called Murtha a "fine man ... who served our country with honor." The White House has made no attempt to reach out to Murtha since then. "None. None. Zero. Not one call," a baffled Murtha told NEWSWEEK. "I don't know who the hell they're talking to. If they talked to people, they wouldn't get these outbursts. If they'd talked to me, it wouldn't have happened."

These are not the positions of principled or serious people. Voters are not stupid and will recognize how fickle the Democratic party has become and will recognize that they cannot be trusted with the leadership of our country. If the basis for your rejection of our valiant attempt to transform the Middle East is that you didn't get a personal call from President Bush, you've got the maturity of a 13 year old. (Come to think of it, that IS the maturity of most of the members of Congress.)

In closing, the final message to the Democrats (and the insurgents for that matter) will be delivered this week at the polling booths in Iraq. This Iraqi voter from the US summed up my thoughts exactly. (Visit "The Political Teen for the video):
“Anybody who doesn’t appreciate what America has done and President Bush, let them go to hell”

– Iraqi Citizen, voter Betty Dawisha

Our own MontereyJohn, a fine co-conspirator of the vast right wing cabal, was against the war in Iraq. But like a true patriot, he has recognized that premature withdrawal would be disastrous and now that we're in the fight, we must win. Why can't the Democrats, the Tories and the Sunshine Patriots of our day, do the same? They are the Paper Tigers...

For Related posts, see:Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

All the news that isn't news

ReddHedd at Firedoglake grabs onto "the scoop" from the Washington Post today:

A Capitol Hill denizen popped into a crowded little place near Union Station called Cafe Phillips yesterday and found herself practically sitting in on a meeting between Scooter Libby and his lawyers.
Uh-oh. Were they talking about the neo-con cabal inside the WH? Planning hits, Soprano's style, on the prosecution?
Libby -- the former veep aide indicted in the Valerie Plame leak investigation, the most closely shrouded federal prosecution in recent years -- was at the next table, she said, while his defense attorneys, Ted Wells and William Jeffress, had a loud and "lively discussion" about matters such as who will draft discovery letters and petitions. She heard Wells say he hopes Karl Rove will not be indicted because he fears the press coverage would complicate Libby's defense. Jeffress, meanwhile, speculated that Time's Viveca Novak could be the next reporter to lose her job because of the probe.
Oh, guess not. Thats the super secret info? Um, I could have told them that Libby's defense team was going to, you know, maybe, draft a discovery letter or two (or 200). And I speculated Monday, that Viveca was probably on the outs at Time.

ReddHedd insinuates that ol' Libby is worried:
Guess Scooter isn't looking thinner because he's doing South Beach with that cookie buy on the way out, but I'd bet he and his team will be ordering in next time they have a meeting. Conference room for three?
I think it should be the MSM reporters and Fitzgerald that should be worried. Who do you think those discovery letters are being written for? Doesn't look like Libby is looking for a plea deal anytime soon.

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: Brian

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Other Snippets from W's Forum

While the 30,000 "civilians" has gotten much press attention, Bush (in his folksy and clumsy way) explained (yet again) why we're in this war and our strategic objectives:

Q Well I have a question for you. Do you feel that since invading Iraq, the threat of terrorism on U.S. soil has been reduced significantly?

THE PRESIDENT: I think it's been reduced; I don't think we're safe. What will really give me confidence to say that we're safe is when I can tell the American people we've got the capacity to know exactly where the enemy is moving. This is a different kind of war. These people hide. They -- they're patient and they're sophisticated. And that's why our intelligence-gathering is really important.

You know, occasionally they come out and want to fight like they're doing in Iraq. This guy, Zarqawi, has sworn his allegiance to bin Laden. He has -- he's declared his intentions. But there's a lot of them who lurk and hide. And what we've really got to do is continue to hone our intelligence-gathering to make sure that we can, as best as possible, understand their intents and watch their movements. And this requires international cooperation.

I will tell you the international cooperation, when it comes to sharing intelligence, is good. It requires us being able to cut off their money and move money around. They can't -- it turns out, they can't launch attacks without money. And so we're doing the best we can to work with others to find out where their money is moving. And that way, it will be a -- give us a chance to find out where they are.

The long run in this war is going to require a change of governments in parts of the world. It's -- and this is why it's very important for me to continue to remind the American people about what's taking place in history. One of my favorite stories is to tell people about -- or go-bys -- is to tell people about my relationship with Koizumi, Prime Minister Koizumi of Japan. He's an interesting guy. He likes Elvis, for example, which is -- (laughter) -- interesting -- (laughter). He's a friend. He's also a friend when it comes to peace. He's a reliable, steady ally when it comes to dealing with North Korea. North Korea is a country that has declared boldly they've got nuclear weapons, they counterfeit our money, and they've starving their people to death. And it's good to have an ally that understands human rights and the condition of the human being are vital for this world and world peace.

And yet, 60 years ago, my dad fought against the Japanese -- many of your relatives did, as well. They were the sworn enemy of the United States. I find it amazing -- I don't know if you find it amazing -- I find it amazing that I sit down with this guy, strategizing about how to make the world a more peaceful place when my dad and others fought him.

And so what happened? Now, 60 years seems like a long time, particularly if you're 59, like me. (Laughter.) But it's not all that long in history, when you think about it. And what happened was a Japanese-style democracy emerged. Democracies yield the peace. That's what history has shown us. That's what I tried to say in my peroration in this speech. That's a long word. I'm doing it for Senator Specter here. (Laughter and applause.) Just showing off, Senator. Just trying to look good in front of the folks here at home. (Laughter.) But it's an accurate portrayal of what has happened. Democracies yield the peace.

So the fundamental question is, do we have the confidence and universal values to help change a troubled part of the world. If you're a supporter of Israel, I would strongly urge you to help other countries become democracies. Israel's long-term survival depends upon the spread of democracy in the Middle East. I recognize people have -- (applause) -- I fully recognize that some say it's impossible, that maybe only a certain kind of people can be -- can accept democracy. I just -- I reject that. I don't agree with that. I believe democracy -- the desire to be free is universal. That's what I believe. And if you believe that, then you've got to act on it. That doesn't mean militarily. But that means using the influence of the United States to work with others to help -- to help freedom spread.

And that's what you're seeing in Iraq. And it's hard. It's hard for a country that has come from dictatorship two-and-a-half years ago to become a democracy. It is hard work. There's a lot of resentment and anger and bitterness. But I believe it's going to happen. And the only way it won't happen is if we leave, if we lose our nerve, if we allow the terrorists to achieve their objective. The only way we can lose this is for us to say to the terrorists, maybe you aren't dangerous, after all -- you know, by leaving, maybe that you'll become hospitable, decent citizens of the world. That's not reality. And my job as the President is to see the world the way it is, not the way we hope it is. (Applause.)

I, again, want to thank you for giving me the chance to come and deliver this speech. I'm grateful for your interest. May God bless you all, and may God continue to bless America. (Applause.)

If you read the above and are still confused, please get a copy of The Case For Democracy by Natan Sharansky, as it's quite plain what we're trying to accomplish. We have to drain the swamp that the Middle East has become... In the 21st century, we can no longer tolerate oppressive regimes and ideologies with expansionist dreams.

There's nothing more "liberal" than seeking to liberalize and liberate the world...

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

30,000 "Civilians"

Greyhawk at the Mudville Gazette caught the MSM in a distortion yesterday:

Instant Urban Legend?
Greyhawk

Yesterday:
Q Since the inception of the Iraqi war, I'd like to know the approximate total of Iraqis who have been killed. And by Iraqis I include civilians, military, police, insurgents, translators.

THE PRESIDENT: How many Iraqi citizens have died in this war? I would say 30,000, more or less, have died as a result of the initial incursion and the ongoing violence against Iraqis. We've lost about 2,140 of our own troops in Iraq.

Today's headlines? "Bush says 30,000 Iraqi civilians dead in war"Meanwhile, Reuters reports that voting has begun in Iraq
Voting started on a day that U.S. President George W. Bush gave a rare estimate of the number of civilians killed since U.S. troops invaded in 2003, acknowledging that 30,000 civilians had died in the violence.

We're sure corrections are forthcoming.

Reuters, famous for its use of scare quotes around the word "terrorists", is still claiming that there are 30,000 civilian deaths.

The SFGate, on the other hand, has corrected their headline (without acknowledging the original error):
Bush says 30,000 Iraqis dead in war
He says 'terrorists, Saddamists will continue violence'
But instead of referring to Iraqi civilians and combatants (or "insurgents" or "terrorists"), they simply refer to Iraqis and provides only this clarification buried in the story:
The White House later said that Bush, by using the 30,000 number, was repeating the casualty count mentioned in the media and by independent groups. The Web site Iraqbodycount.org estimates the number of Iraqis killed at a low of 27,383 and a high of 30,892, based on online media and eyewitness accounts.

The figure includes Iraqi civilians and military and police personnel
But no insurgents or terrorists?

They then include figures from the Brookings Institute, which use Iraq Body Count to tracks "civilian" casualties:
The Iraq Index compiled by the Brookings Institution, a Washington think tank, uses data from Iraq Body Count to estimate the number of Iraqi civilians killed through acts of war since the invasion from 16,300 to 28,700. It also says more than 3,700 Iraqi military and police officers have been killed since June 2003.

Confused? Could it be that Bush was referring to 30,000 deaths of combatants (both Iraqi military during the initial incursion and insurgents/terrorists after the end of "major combat operations"? And the MSM decides it's a great time to go after the civilian death angle?

See Michelle Malkin & Basil's Blog as well.

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Grasping at Straws

It seems that the DUers are all atwitter over the RNC ad showing the Dem leadership undermine our efforts in Iraq. The best counter that they have to offer isn't a criticism of the actual meaning of the ad, but the following from Slate's chief political correspondent, John Dickerson:

The Grinch Who Doctored Photos
The RNC's fraudulent new ad.


The RNC's new Web video "Retreat and Defeat" starts with a flat-screen TV playing clips from Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean, Sen. Barbara Boxer, and Sen. John Kerry. As they speak, a white flag waves over their faces while ominous music moans. Dean says the war in Iraq can't be won; Boxer says withdrawal should start after the Iraqi election; and Kerry says U.S. soldiers shouldn't be "terrorizing kids and children, you know, women." Then the camera pans back, and we learn that we've been watching these clips over the shoulder of a U.S. soldier dressed in desert camouflage, his semiautomatic rifle strapped to his back. Candy canes hang on the wall just above the screen, which flashes the message: "Our soldiers are watching and our enemies are too."



The video conveys the impression that somewhere in Iraq, a soldier is having his mission and Christmas tarnished by weak-willed Democrats. Here is a frame from the ad and the actual picture of the soldier, taken two years ago. As shown below, the soldier was really watching How the Grinch Stole Christmas!



The soldier and the Grinch, pre-doctoring

Web ads are a special low art meant to stir the base. Both parties use them: They are cheap to produce and usually highly misleading. Both parties also hope the media pick up on them and spread their messages without the party having to buy actual, expensive air time.

...

What neither party has done—until now—is inject the idea that the other party is undermining our troops overseas. The RNC is pimping a mute and unnamed soldier not just to defend the Iraq war but to imply that Democrats are white-handkerchief-waving cowards who want the United States to lose.

So, did the RNC grab a uniformed soldier and have him watch the Dems' attacks on his service in Iraq? No... (and no doubt the Dems would attack the RNC for using a soldier as an actor in a political ad).

But this doesn't remove the point that our soldiers do hear what the Democratic leadership says here at home - as do the terrorists. The point of the ad is that perhaps the Dems should think twice before opening their yappers. Apparently, that's too nuanced a point for the DUers, Howard Dean, and Senator Inouye to grasp.

Be sure to check out the comments on DU, such as these:
villager
Donating Member (1000+ posts)
Mon Dec-12-05 05:44 PM
Response to Original message

2. well, they doctor election results

so why is anyone surprised?




Straight Shooter
Donating Member (1000+ posts)
Tue Dec-13-05 12:06 AM
Response to Reply #17

20. He's right. Failure in Iraq is NOT an option.

It's our FATE.

No doubt, since I applied some formatting to the above comments, I "doctored" them....

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Slouching Towards Gonorrhea

Yes, it's a play on words from Bork's book (which I've never read, btw...)

This story prompted this post:

Sex Survey 'Eye-Opening' For Local Parents
By MARILYN BROWN
Dec 11, 2005

TAMPA - Many Hillsborough County middle and high school students lead double lives - one for their parents and one for their peers.

In a districtwide survey, nearly half of high school students and one in five middle school students said they have had sexual intercourse, and a higher percentage of high school boys than girls reported being physically hurt by their "significant others."

20 PERCENT of MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS are having sexual intercourse. (Curious as to what is defined as sexual intercourse by the researchers and how it was explained to those taking the survey... is it the "No Hands" rule that Clinton relied on?
"We really do not understand what's going on with kids today," Lloyd Zimet, who oversees prevention and wellness programs for Hillsborough schools, told a small group of Parent-Teacher Association parents and grandparents last week.

The spring survey of more than 5,000 randomly selected Hillsborough students revealed other risky behaviors.

Among student-reported activity from four thick survey volumes compiled by the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
  • Nearly one-third of high school students said they were propositioned to buy, bought or sold drugs while at school.
  • Condom use decreases with age, dropping from 78 percent in eighth grade to 61.4 percent for high school seniors.
  • More male high school students - 16 percent - reported being physically hurt by their significant others than female students, at 11.8 percent.
  • More than 9 percent of male and nearly 12 percent of female high school students said they were physically forced to have sex.
9% to 12% of students were physically forced to have sex!!! Although, the good news is that our MIDDLE SCHOOLERS are diligent when it comes to condom use!!!!
"I know that is happening, because my son constantly gets letters from girls who want to do sexual things to him," said Paula Thomas, mother of five children ages 9 to 16. "It starts in the sixth or seventh grade."

At school, the Citrus Park mother said, "They know to stay out of certain hallways because of the girls."
Somewhere, Betty Friedan is cheering the (apparent) sexual aggression of the "fairer sex".
Parents at the meeting, who often are involved in schools as PTA board members, said they didn't know about the survey. Had their children been a part of it, Zimet said, they would have been asked to sign permission slips.

"There is no way I'd want [my son] to take that survey if he was in middle school," said Camille Johnston, mother of children ages 7 and 10 who attend Nelson Elementary School in Dover. "But I'd want those results."
You wouldn't want your son to take the survey because he's too busy with school work? And as far as results are concerned, perhaps you should talk to your son to find out "the results" from him directly
Parents need that type of "eye-opening" information, the PTA leaders agreed.

"I'm a pretty involved parent, but I'm pretty ignorant about what the trends are," said Sharold Allen, the county council president who asked Zimet to make the presentation. "This is so important."
The trends? It's not the trends, it's your kid's values that you're likely ignorant about....

[...]
Parents usually don't see the results because those go to community agencies and committees dealing with such issues.

One Hillsborough PTA board member not shocked at the district's survey results was 89-year-old Bill Monfort, a World War II veteran and a parent of three living children, six grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

"I can't say that I'm surprised," Monfort said. "People do a lot of things today that people didn't used to do - and at a younger age."

You don't say, Mr. Monfort. Why is this the case? Is it just the "progression" of human society that kids start having sex earlier? What has changed from when you were a child in the 20s and 30s, Mr. Monfort? Is it the parents? The community? The media? The morality of our culture? post-modernism? nihilism? relativism?

As the father of two, this is really disturbing.

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Monday, December 12, 2005

So Long, Tookie....

Your judgment day has been delayed long enough - over 25 years to be exact... time to meet your maker. If only your victims received as much fanfare before you brutally killed them as you do today. If only you had shown your victims 25 years ago the mercy that you so desparately seek today... Fortunately for you, you've had 25 years to reflect on your life and attempt to make peace with God, talk with your friends & families, and even lure the support of Hollywood celebrities, etc. Shamefully, you did not extend such a courtesy to your victims - extinguishing their lives with a shotgun blast.

Previous post here

See Wizbang, Michelle Malkin, & La Shawn Barber...

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Moonbat, Meet Moonbat - Mary Mapes Interviewed by the "Reality Based Community"

DailyKos contributor Hunter hitches his star to Mary Mapes and hilarity ensues! His interview is just wonderful... A moonbat match made in heaven!

Just a few excerpts from Mary before we get into the comments by the Reality Based Community:

The criticisms of the documents' physical characteristics -- that typewriters couldn't do that stuff in 1972 -- have turned out to be pure bunk. The bloggers' claims that the typing features showed the documents were forged were themselves a fraud. They succeeded, however, in hijacking the discussion about the story and even pulling the wool over the eyes of a lot of critics of George Bush and his Guard record. NO mainstream reporter (or blogger for that matter) has followed up on the fraudulent but very effective charges that radical right bloggers made and that other media repeated.
[...]
The new documents now on my web site seem to have had little impact on the "freepers" or the Powerline followers. But then reality has no impact on these people. They just didn't like the content of the story and they would have used anything to try to knock it down.
[...]
Luckily for them, they hit on the issue of fonts and thirty year old typewriter capabilities, something so mind-numbingly dull that no one cared to devote the time to seeing whether the critics' charges were true or not.
Apparently so dull that even you didn't bother to look into them when Marcel Matley, your "document" expert called them into question...
irst of all, I have nothing against political blogs. I read them and enjoy them and think they provide a wonderful adjunct to news coverage. That said, I think what happened to CBS and Dan Rather and me was something else. It was an attack, a swarming, character assassination carried out by people who cared about nothing beyond their political agenda. I don't care what someone's politics are, liberal or conservative, this kind of behavior is disgusting.

CBS was way over its head in trying to battle the conservative blogs. We all were. I remember sitting in my office, watching faxes, many of them angry and obscene, pour off the machine outside the door.

Who in the @#$ sends in a FAX!?!?! When did this controversy erupt, 1984???

It gets more delusional, but it's more interesting to read the moonbattery that follows. One commenter tries to point out to the "reality based community" that the docs were forged. The comment thread starts here. He's quickly slammed, since he doesn't fit the narrative:
No, the documents are fake (4.00 / 3)

Virtually every expert from the Typography manager at Adobe on agree. No one has been able to collect the reward for creating a duplicate document on 1970's area typography.

by william shipley on Sun Dec 11, 2005 at 02:13:55 PM PDT


So the documents are a (3.50 / 2)

a replication (and a bad one at that), not a duplication. The information is authentic. See what I am getting at?

It is difficult to navigate, but the story needs to be hammered on again

by roboton on Sun Dec 11, 2005 at 02:30:32 PM PDT


Um (none / 1)

did you bother to read the interview or go to her website to see similar documents with said typing characteristics obtained DIRECTLY FROM TANG?

The answer is: NO

by talex on Sun Dec 11, 2005 at 02:31:13 PM PDT



The answere is YES (3.40 / 5)

And I watched her CSPAN interview as well. The problem with the 'characteristics' is that they are simpifications. For example people said that there were no proportional typewriters. Of course there were, I had one. They have said there were no th keys, once again I had a typewriter I got for high-school graduation in 1970 that had two replacable keys that could be anything.

If you look at the other period documents posted, while they may have some of these characteristics, they look nothing like the proported documents. Many period documents have been found that have the 'th'. None of them look like the 'th' in the Mapes documents -- but Microsoft word does a fine job of matching them. There is a significant difference between the coarse proportional spacing available on typewriters with mechanical escapement as opposed to modern computer printers.

I can understand why she is desparately clinging to the validity of the documents, but why is anyone else?

I should say that I believe there is some truth to the underlying story, but I really don't care. George Bush did give more service to his country than I did, or Dick Cheny or Bill Clinton. And John Kerry gave even more.

by william shipley on Sun Dec 11, 2005 at 02:54:23 PM PDT



OK (2.50 / 2)

Then Mapes says the other documents she found at TANG proves that the CBS documents were real and you say they are not. She has evidence and you have an opinion. I guess you better take it up with her.

As for Bush serving more that you did - what does that have to do with his lying about the facts regarding his privileged and sporadic AWOL service and early discharge? Nothing.

by talex on Sun Dec 11, 2005 at 03:11:40 PM PDT


Ms Mapes says she's not a typeography expert (3.75 / 4)

I have over a decade of experience in typesetting software design. I arguably am a typography expert. I would love to take it up with her, but her strongest support for the documents is that they are consistant with the other information known.

But since the other information known is in the public domain, and well-known, it's not hard at all to imagine someone creating a document using the data that was, after all, on a variety of web sites.

by william shipley on Sun Dec 11, 2005 at 03:22:51 PM PDT


First Off (2.00 / 3)

you are a obviously a lonely voice here - and a self-proclaimed expert.

Now in your second paragraph you expose yourself as an 'Imaginer'. You make the leap from self-proclaimed expert to "it's not hard at all to imagine".

Sorry, based on that I'll stick with my original conviction that Mapes is right and you are an imaginer.

Nice talking. Try Redstate.com or Free Republic - they'd probably love to here what you have to say there.

by talex on Sun Dec 11, 2005 at 04:10:26 PM PDT

It keeps going and William Shipley provides additional evidence that the Reality Based Community isn't really interested in reality. Shipley goes on to note that no one has yet to claim the $50,000 reward for producing replicas of the documents using technology from 1972.

I love it when the facts hit the Kossacks between the eyes....

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Viveca goes to Fitz

Today's Time magazine has an article from Viveca Novak detailing her experience being deposed by Fitzgerald in the ongoing CIA leak probe.

Luskin clearly thought that was going to help Rove, perhaps by explaining why Rove hadn't told Fitzgerald or the grand jury of his conversation with my colleague Matt Cooper about former Ambassador Joe Wilson's wife until well into the inquiry. I knew what Matt had been through--the unwanted celebrity, the speculation unrelated to fact, the dissection of his life and career. I didn't face the prospect of prison, since Luskin clearly wanted me to tell Fitzgerald about the incident and thus Luskin was not a source I had to protect, but no journalist wants to be part of the story.
Translation: I couldn't avoid testifying before the GJ if Fitz wanted me to.... RATS!

Fitzgerald and I met in my lawyer's office on Nov. 10 for about two hours. [My lawyer] had told him I would discuss only my interactions with Luskin that were relevant to the conversation in question. No fishing expeditions, no questions about my other reporting or sources in the case. He agreed, telling my lawyer that he wanted to "remove the chicken bone without disturbing the body."

Huh? What's with the corny sayins from Fitz? "Sand in the eyes of the umpire", "Remove the chicken bone", etc. So what did Fitz ask?
He asked how often Luskin and I met during the period from fall 2003 to fall 2004 (about five times), when, where and so forth. I had calendar entries that helped but weren't entirely reliable. Did I take notes at those meetings? No. Luskin was more likely to speak freely if he didn't see me committing his words to paper. Did Luskin ever talk to me about whether Rove was a source for Matt on the subject of Wilson's wife?

Uh-oh. Another reporter with crappy documentation to go along with their memory. If Rove is indicted I hope it doesn't pin on Viveca's uncorroborated recollection of when or what a specific conversation was. So what about that Cooper/Rove conversation?
Here's what happened. Toward the end of one of our meetings, I remember Luskin looking at me and saying something to the effect of "Karl doesn't have a Cooper problem. He was not a source for Matt." I responded instinctively, thinking he was trying to spin me, and said something like, "Are you sure about that? That's not what I hear around TIME." He looked surprised and very serious. "There's nothing in the phone logs," he said.

How does Luskin say "Karl doesn't have a Cooper problem," unless its in response to a statement from Viveca along the lines of "Your client has a Cooper problem." What was Luskin's reaction?
I was taken aback that he seemed so surprised. I had been pushing back against what I thought was his attempt to lead me astray. I hadn't believed that I was disclosing anything he didn't already know. Maybe this was a feint. Maybe his client was lying to him. But at any rate, I immediately felt uncomfortable. I hadn't intended to tip Luskin off to anything. I was supposed to be the information gatherer. It's true that reporters and sources often trade information, but that's not what this was about. If I could have a do-over, I would have kept my mouth shut; since I didn't, I wish I had told my bureau chief about the exchange. Luskin walked me to my car and said something like, "Thank you. This is important."
Immediately, Viveca realizes that Luskin didn't know about Cooper's conversation with Rove. Lookin in hindsight this also makes it look like Rove is telling the truth. He didn't remember the conversation with Cooper. But Viveca has let on more than she knows. She's let on that she knew about the conversation. Which means Cooper or his editors were blabbing the fact to the Time's newsroom. Back to Viveca, who has now been called to testify under oath, and has told her editors at Time.

A new meeting with Fitzgerald was arranged for Dec. 8. Leaks about my role began appearing in the papers, some of them closer to the mark than others. They all made me feel physically ill. Fitzgerald had asked that I check a couple of dates in my calendar for meetings with Luskin. One of them, March 1, 2004, checked out. I hadn't found that one in my first search because I had erroneously entered it as occurring at 5 a.m., not 5 p.m.

[...]The problem with the new March date was that now I was even more confused--previously I had to try to remember if the key conversation had occurred in January or May, and I thought it was more likely May. But March was close enough to May that I really didn't know. "I don't remember" is an answer that prosecutors are used to hearing, but I was mortified about how little I could recall of what occurred when.

There those editors go again at Time with their leaking! Note to self, never be an anonymous source for anyone at Time, unless you want everybody to know who you are.

And wow she really has bad memory and note taking ability, doesn't she? Why do get the feeling that Luskin has better notes on their conversations (and probably expense reports!) than Viveca? It was important to Luskin, it was a mistake to Viveca, something she wanted to forget. And if there's one thing I know about lawyers, its that they aren't happy unless they are writing "memos to the file." So does Viveca think she just gave Rove a "Get out of Indictment free card?"
I didn't find out until this fall that, according to Luskin, my remark led him to do an intensive search for evidence that Rove and Matt had talked. That's how Luskin says he found the e-mail Rove wrote to Stephen Hadley at the National Security Council.
[...]
According to Luskin, he turned the e-mail over to Fitzgerald when he found it, leading Rove to acknowledge before the grand jury in October 2004 that he had indeed spoken with Cooper.
Nothing in Viveca's purported testimony disputes Luskin's statements, and the revised narrative likely clears Rove. One things for sure, Fitz better not be relying on Viveca's testimony to impeach Luskin! It's amazing she knows her own name.

So how's the Luskin/Viveca friendship?
One final note: Luskin is unhappy that I decided to write about our conversation, but I feel that he violated any understanding to keep our talk confidential by unilaterally going to Fitzgerald and telling him what was said. And, of course, anyone who testifies under oath for a grand jury (my sworn statement will be presented to the grand jury by Fitzgerald) is free to discuss that testimony afterward.
Oohh, not good! It looks like they won't be sharing a bottle of wine at Cafe Deluxe any longer. Since when does a reporter have a confidentiality agreement? I thought she didn't want to be "involved." If she's a source, she's involved.

One final note from the article:
Editor's Note: By mutual agreement, Viveca Novak is currently on a leave of absence.
Ouch! Sounds like Time and Viveca don't see eye to eye anymore. Viveca should just tell any prospective new employers that she didn't tell her editors because they leaked like sieves!

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: Brian

Playing politics with Democrats words

Drudge has linked to a statement from Senator Inouye on the recent GOP ad:

SENATOR CALLS ON BUSH TO TAKE DOWN ATTACK AD
Sat Dec 10 2005 16:41:38 ET

Today, Senator Daniel Inouye, the Ranking Member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee and a recipient of the Medal of Honor for his service in World War II, released the following statement:

"As a Veteran of World War II, I know what it’s like to fight a war and put your life on the line every day. I also know what it takes to win a war, and I know that politics and an attack machine like the President’s plays no part in it.

"The Republican Party’s latest ad is a shameful and disgusting attempt to distract the American people from the problems in Iraq. It may improve the President’s political fortunes, but the American people and our troops will pay the price. I hope that President Bush realizes how shameful it is to play politics when what we really need is leadership, and that he will direct his Party to take down this ad immediately."

Developing...
This is interesting of course, because if you've seen the ad, it uses Democrats own defeatist statements against them. So in Sen. Inouye's view its ok to "play politics" if you're a Democrat. But if you're a Republican, sorry.

Apparently, Senator Inouye didn't get the memo. The Post-Dispatch in an editorial today details the new strategy, "No More Mr. Nice Guy":
Mr. Barnes' source confides, "The strategic decision was to be forward-looking." The president would speak about Iraq and its progress, the source said, but he wouldn't respond to partisan attacks.

*** UPDATE - ST WENDELER ***
Somehow, the troops will "pay the price" when the GOP airs an ad that only plays audio of Democrats calling for the US to pull "a Frenchy".

Methinks this is driven by two things:
  1. The Dems know they overreached (as they always do) and a backlash is in the making;
  2. The elections in Iraq (one of the signs of our impending victory) is going to happen this week, and it's an inopportune time for the Republicans to remind the (voting) public that the Dems are against this war and the transformation that's taking place in the Middle East.

No worries... it seems the Dems have plenty of supporters. (Unfortunately for the Dems, they're not US voters.)
CAIRO, Egypt - Five Islamic militant groups, including al-Qaida in Iraq, denounced the Iraqi elections as a "satanic project" that violates God's law and vowed to continue their war to establish an Islamic government in the country. But the Internet posting made no threats to disrupt Thursday's parliamentary elections, unlike previous statements before balloting in January and October, when militants warned they would attack polling stations to stop people from voting.

The statement's authenticity could not be independently verified. If authentic, it was a rare instance of several of Iraq's militant groups joining together to announce their stance.

"The conspiracy in Iraq against the mujahedeen, the so-called political process ... is nothing more than a satanic project, just like those before it," the statement said.


Finally, the voting has begun in Iraq... there's no doubt in my mind that the Dems and the MSM will play down its significance, aiding and abetting the groups mentioned above.

Recent polls show that the Iraqis have an extremely positive outlook on the future of their country.

Dec. 12, 2005 — Surprising levels of optimism prevail in Iraq with living conditions improved, security more a national worry than a local one, and expectations for the future high. But views of the country's situation overall are far less positive, and there are vast differences in views among Iraqi groups — a study in contrasts between increasingly disaffected Sunni areas and vastly more positive Shiite and Kurdish provinces.

An ABC News poll in Iraq, conducted with Time magazine and other media partners, includes some remarkable results: Despite the daily violence there, most living conditions are rated positively, seven in 10 Iraqis say their own lives are going well, and nearly two-thirds expect things to improve in the year ahead.

If only the Democrats, "progressives", and the MSM could share in this optimism and smile upon the spread of liberty in the world. (It wasn't too long ago when it was "liberal" to pursue such things...)

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: Brian

Iran - Nuttier than Kim Jong Il?

Mark Steyn has this great column in the Chicago Sun-Times, discussing the recent call by the president of Iran to move Israel to Europe, since that's where the Holocaust "supposedly" happenend:

"Some European countries insist on saying that Hitler killed millions of innocent Jews in furnaces," Ahmadinejad told Iranian TV viewers. "Although we don't accept this claim, if we suppose it is true," he added sportingly, "if European countries claim that they have killed Jews in World War II, why don't they provide the Zionist regime with a piece of Europe? Germany and Austria can provide the regime with two or three provinces for this regime to establish itself, and the issue will be resolved. You offer part of Europe, and we will support it."

Big of you. It's the perfect solution to the "Middle East peace process": out of sight, out of mind. And given that Ahmadinejad's out of his mind, we're already halfway there.

So let's see: We have a Holocaust denier who wants to relocate an entire nation to another continent, and he happens to be head of the world's newest nuclear state. (They're not 100 percent fully-fledged operational, but happily for them they can drag out the pseudo-negotiations with the European Union until they are. And Washington certainly won't do anything, because after all if we're not 100 percent certain they've got WMD -- which we won't be until there's a big smoking crater live on CNN one afternoon -- it would be just another Bushitlerburton lie to get us into another war for oil, right?)

So how does the United States react? Well, White House spokesman Scott McClellan said that the comments of Ahmadinejad "further underscore our concerns about the regime."

Really? But wait, the world's superpower wasn't done yet. The State Department moved to a two-adjective alert and described Ahmadinejad's remarks as "appalling" and "reprehensible." "They certainly don't inspire hope among any of us in the international community that the government of Iran is prepared to engage as a responsible member of that community," said spokesman Adam Ereli.

You don't say. Ahmadinejad was speaking in the holy city of Mecca, head office of the "religion of peace," during a meeting of the Organization of the Islamic Conference. There were fiftysomething other heads of government in town. How many do you think took their Iranian colleague to task?

Well, what's new? But, that being so, it would be heartening if the rest of the world could muster a serious response to the guy. How one pines for a plain-spoken tell-it-like-it-is fellow like, say, former U.N. Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali? As he memorably said of Iran, "It's a totalitarian regime." Oh, no, wait. He said that about the United States. On Iran, he's as impeccably circumspect and discreet as the State Department.

In addition to reading the entire column, be sure to check out the following... The Iranian government is "disappointed" that Kofi Annan hasn't sought to implement the Iranian President's "solution" to the Middle East peace process. From the Islamic Republic News Agency:
An Iranian paper on Monday harshly criticized the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan for not endorsing Iranian president's solution for the occupied Palestinian problem.

'Kayhan International' said President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's press conference in Holy Mecca was hailed by the world's 1.5 billion plus Muslim people.
Wait, I thought the Muslim's are not a monolithic culture??? Apparently Ahmadinejad thinks it is... at least with regards to the issue of Israel's existence.

Ahmadinejad, on the sidelines of the summit of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) on December 8, had called for relocation of the Zionists to their homeland Europe.

"The Iranian president's remarks on Occupied Palestine and the illegitimacy of the Zionist entity that was planted in the heart of the Islamic world by western powers on the flimsy pretext of the supposed holocaust against European Jews during World War II, has without the least doubt breathed fresh air into the struggle for liberation of Islam's former qibla, Beit Ul-Moqaddas," argued the editorial.

However, Annan's "sickening statement" about President Ahmadinejad's remarks was a source of surprise, it added.

"Instead of behaving as the respectable head of the World Body by endorsing the Iranian president's solution, the UN head chose to sacrifice the honor and dignity of Black Africa at the altar of white supremacists by supporting the myth of the holocaust," it regretted.

The article further urged Annan to read history instead of losing himself in the make-belief world of Zionist fables.

Hoping that Washington is wise enough to pick up the offer, the paper suggested that the Americans and the Europeans "can help undo the injustice of the recent past against the Palestinians by organizing a massive airlift of all Zionists to somewhere in the vast stretches of North America, where they can have the state and government of their choice."

Ahmadinejad also emphasized on Iran's just proposal for referendum throughout Palestine for determining the form of government in that occupied land with participation of all those stateless Palestinians living in neighboring countries as refugees for over half-century, the paper noted.

Terming the president's suggestion as the "only peaceful solution to the Middle East's chronic crisis," it stressed, "Muslim states will certainly lend their efforts for the peaceful transportation of all Zionists from the sacred soil of Palestine to the New World." It concluded by saying that the Muslim Ummah firmly believes in cleansing Palestinian soil from the filth of Zionism.
(Emphasis mine)

Now sure, we know Ahmadadflajflad is a nutjob, but the biggest problem is that HE DOESN'T know he's a nutjob.

Now, since Ahmadaedjljad doesn't have nukes just yet, we're able to laugh at these rantings... right now, he's requesting that Annan accept this as the solution for peace in the Middle East. Does anyone really think that he'd even ASK for the UN to get involved if he had nukes at his disposal?

We cannot allow this to continue... We have got to push the Iranian people to bring down this deranged regime. If they won't, we must.

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Left is still holding out for a Merry Fitzmas...

Viveca Novak has now penned an article for Time detailing her deposition with Fitz on the Luskin conversations. More on her article in another post.

Jeralyn Merrit over at TalkLeft isn't as blinded as some on the left, but she tries to keep hope alive!

Bottom line: Karl Rove's chances of escaping a charge of perjury before the grand jury increase. But, I believe he's still on the hook for lying to federal investigators before the grand jury was convened in October, 2003 when he failed to tell them about his July 8, telephone conference with reporter Bob Novak when he reportedly said, after Novak told him all about Wilson's wife, "I heard that too."
Sorry, Fitz isn't going to indict on that for one simple reason. Based on Jeralyn's reasoning, he could have already. Because of the fact that he didn't indict Rove when he indicted Libby, he must feel that that case is too weak to bring to trial. And if you honestly look at it, its obvious that it is extremely weak. It's believed that Rove said to investigators that he wasn't Bob Novak's source. What we know is that Rove was one of his sources, but his entire contribution was "I heard that too". Now granted, I'm not a journalist, but "I heard that too" is not a confirmation of anything other than rumors are flying around the always gossippy beltway. Rove's defense would simply be, I can't believe that nutball Bob Novak took that as a confirmation of his story, hence I didn't think I was one of his sources. Case closed, thanks for playing.

But if Jeralyn is holding out hope, the Kossacks (specifically Armando) are in full denial:
Jeralyn says that Rove's chance of escaping a perjury count increase as a result of V. Novak's testimony. But that's not new. Luskin has had to explain why Rove didn't disclose his conversation with Time magazine reporter Matt Cooper. The defense is clear. He forgot it. Only when Rove was shown his e-mail to Steven Hadley of July 11, 2003 did he remember the conversation. The questions are and have been throughout (1) why didn't the White House and Rove turn over the Steven Hadley e-mail immediately? and (2) why did it take so long to find it?
Who says they didn't turn it over immediately when they found it? Is Armando accusing Luskin of obstruction of justice? What reason would they have to delay turning it over? If they found it, its possible that Fitz already had it, or that he would learn of it through other means (Hadley testimony for example). And the email was if anything exculpatory for the narrative Fitz was operating under in the case.

As to the length of time, obviously Luskin provided a reason to Fitz for why they found it when they did, and Fitz accepted that reason, because he didn't indict Rove and decided to check out Viveca's side of the story. If the timing of the email was the issue Fitz had enough to indict already.

I guess I see Jeralyn's point that any story is better than no story, but THIS story is so full of holes and BS that I simply don't see how this helps Rove.

My take is that Luskin is so bereft of defenses that this defense strikes me as the mother of all Hail Mary passes.

Of course he doesn't see, because the left is convinced of Rove's guilt, and anything that is excuplatory for Rove causes them to search for metaphor's to...to...why further implicate Rove of course!

Previous post on the delusion of the left can be found here.
Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: Brian

If Not Tookie, Who?


The CA Supreme Court (that ultra-rightwing cabal) has rejected Tookie's appeal to stay the execution. Now it's up to the Governator to decide.

I've been reluctant to post on the subject, at least not until Snoop Dogg opened his mouth and compared Tookie to Martin Luther King, Jr.

I'm sorry, but if the state of California is so warped that it cannot carry out a death sentence for a cold-blooded killer that started one of the most notorious and violent gangs in the country, then why do they even have the death penalty? This is the exact reason that you have the death penalty - for the most violent and egregious offenses.

Two notes to those who support Tooke in the Media:

  1. The bulked up images of Tookie from prison do not help his case... a big, angry grimace and 20-inch biceps does not say "I've repented"
  2. The best way for Tookie to teach kids to stay out of gangs is not for you to stay alive and sell a few hundred more copies of your children's books. No, the best lesson would be given when you're killed for the crimes that you commit. The message would be "even the founder of the Crips isn't immune from the law."

As I've said here, I'm not one to cheer for someone's death (unless it's OBL & Co), but the adulation that Tookie is receiving from the Hollywood whackjobs and the Left is sickening.

Head on over to California Conservative and vote... And check out Michelle Malkin for more

*** UPDATE ***
Looks like Tookie's not long for this world...

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Sunday, December 11, 2005

The Middle East is not a Monolithic Culture

American Views of the Middle East
by lebanon.profile

Americans are aiding and abetting pan-Arabism.

Seriously.

This isn't a joke.

The way Americans think about the Middle East is the very way that pan-Arabists and pan-Islamists want them to think about the Middle East: it's a region of Arabic speaking Muslims who don't drink alcohol, hate the United States, want to destroy Israel and massacre Jews, and want a revolutionary socialist government.

Ok, this is true... not all people in the Middle East have these views - as evidenced by the democratic movements in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Lebanon.

Well, guess I'll continue reading...
That's the equivalent of non-Americans saying, "The United States is a country of white Protestants who trace their heritage back to England and Germany, listen to country music, are xenophobic but simultaneously enjoy foreign wars, go to church every Sunday and Bible study throughout the rest of the week, don't travel, watch Nascar, drink Miller High Life, and eat only chicken pot pie, meatloaf, tuna casserole, cranberries, hamburgers, pizza, American cheese, freedom fries, and stuffed turkey."

That description probably doesn't even describe a single American family. It discounts massive segments of the American population that have driven American political and social life.

*sets down Miller High Life (Lite) and his piece of pizza... turns off the rerun of Nascar race on the Speed channel*

Yeah, that is ridiculous... that doesn't describe a single American family... sure, I like foreign wars (although I'm not xenophobic), go to church (although not every Sunday), but I'm not like that at all.... I mean, I travel... have lived abroad, and I like my freedom fries with American cheese melted on them.

;-)

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

I'm Long on the Anglosphere, Part III

Part I and Part II

As I've predicted in the past, I'm not convinced that China will be able to make the transition to a democracy despite the expansion of it's pseudo-free market. (It's not capitalism in my mind if government officials have a stake in large companies).

On Friday, it was reported that the Chinese government had fired upon villagers in South China, killing many. See Pajamas Media and Gateway Pundit (here and here) for more. The cause for the shooting by Chinese security forces was the fact that the government seized land from farmers and apparently didn't compensate them as they were supposed to. As with most authoritarian regimes, the peasants are mistreated while the party officials line their pockets. From the Epoch Times:

According to villagers in Shanwei, Guangdong province, at 5pm of December 6, approximately two thousand armed police and riot police arrived in Dongzhou village of Shanwei city. They surrounded the hillside and conflicts broke out between the police and villagers who were trying to protect their land. The armed police fired shots at the villagers. So far, thirty-three have been killed and several dozen injured. Two village representatives were arrested.

A villager told NTDTV,"People who died are in their age of twenties. Some are in their age of thirties. I was shaking at home. I didn't know whether they would come here to crush us again."

Villagers said, that apart from shooting them, the armed police used tear gas to drive them away from the hills.

An injured villager told the reporter, "I was shot. The bullet shot my arm and penetrated my arm."

Until December 7, the Shanwei City government had the village under police lock-down, controlling the movements of the villagers-- not letting them go anywhere near the scene of the shootings.
As it becomes clear that the transition from an authoritarian regime to a more (classically) liberal government will either be extremely chaotic (or very lengthy), expect to see an increase in investment in the largest democracy in the world. As I've posted on here, the US is certainly forging closer ties with India and this will continue.

Interestingly, this incident is not making the news in China (perhaps because the government is the press???). Fortunately, courageous journalists are reporting the story in Hong Kong.

*** UPDATE ***
Would we have the cojones to boycott the Olympics? Should the International Olympic Committee allow the games to be hosted in a country that has massacred its own civilians multiple times in the past 25 years (and killed millions of its people within its recent past)?

Seems that there are plenty of sites up devoted to that purpose, such as this one/

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler