Saturday, July 29, 2006


President Bush proudly declared that American foreign policy no longer seeks to “manage calm,” and derided policies that let anger and resentment lie “beneath the surface.” Bush said that the violence in the Middle East was evidence of a more effective foreign policy that addresses “root causes.”

This is sheer, abject lunacy of the sort that imagined the invasion of Iraq would lead to city squares in Iraq named after George W. Bush and the invasion would pay for itself out of oil revenues. The only appropriate reaction is to very loudly proclaim this is the reasoning of madmen. No rational human being thinks like this.

Cease-Fire Logic

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and President Bush say they're not pressing for a quick cease-fire in Lebanon because they want a lasting peace instead.

However, the administration's fundamental assumptions - that it's impossible to get both a quick end to the killings and a durable peace, and that a cease-fire would be a step away from real peace rather than toward it - are open to question.

The logic, such as it is, employed by Bush and Condi is that since cease-fires have been broken in the past, it is the cease-fires themselves that are the impediment to peace. No cease-fires ergo no broken cease-fires. It's sort of like saying that red lights are the reason drivers run red lights. Remove the traffic lights and, presto, drivers aren't running red lights anymore. Just ignore the carnage at intersections.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Bush Admin Kept Pakistani Plutonium Enrichment Knowledge Secret from Congress

Even Spector I s Upset with Bush Over the Signing Statements

Monday, July 24, 2006

Global Warming Denial, Continued

Why do people who insist the cost of combatting GW is too high tend to disregard the costs of doing nothing?

In fact, the costs of combatting GW are relatively low, on a global level.

Why Isn't This A HUGE SCANDAL?

The Death-Monger

Sunday, July 16, 2006

48% Strongly Disapprove

ABC/WaPo poll.

That's pretty high, and an all-time high for Bush.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Clueless George, Part CCCLXXVI

During a press conference today at the G8 summit in Russia, President Bush told President Vladimir Putin that Americans want Russia to develop a free press and free religion “like Iraq.” To laughter and applause, Putin responded: “We certainly would not want to have same kind of democracy as they have in Iraq, quite honestly.” CNN’s Ed Henry called it a “tough jab.” Watch it:

Putin and Bush at G8

The exchange underscores how the war in Iraq has damaged the standing of the United States, to the point where even modest encouragement for democratic reform is met with ridicule.

Full transcript:

BUSH: I talked about my desire to promote institutional change in parts of the world, like Iraq, where there’s a free press and free religion. And I told him that a lot of people in our country would hope that Russia will do the same thing. I fully understand, however, that there will be a Russian-style democracy.

PUTIN: We certainly would not want to have same kind of democracy as they have in Iraq, quite honestly.

BUSH: Just wait.

Friday, July 14, 2006

The Worst President Ever, Part CCCLXVII

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

A Scathing St. Petersburg Times Editorial

American Dream

By Chris Floyd

In the mystic haze of midsummer, a most unlikely Oberon stepped forth last week to fling a spray of fairy light across the murk, rousing the ill-enchanted sleepers with the hope that dawn had finally come again. But as the magic glow fades, the spell-struck victims will likely find they are still caught in a curse of perpetual night.

We speak of course of the U.S. Supreme Court decision that struck down the ludicrous and lawless “military tribunals” concocted by President George W. Bush to serve as meat grinders for the captives in his War on Terror. Led by the sprightly 86-year-old Justice John Paul Stevens, a narrow court majority delivered a stinging rebuke to Bush’s assumption of imperial powers over the past five years, clearly rejecting the fundamental principle underlying the Crawford Caligula’s foul misrule: that the president’s unbridled will is the law.

The ruling has been hailed as a “victory for democracy,” the “light at the end of the tunnel,” a “turning point” in the long struggle to reclaim the republic from the usurping junta of the Bush regime. But we have seen these lights before, and watched them fade. All the previous “turning points” — scandals, atrocities, judicial rebuffs, investigations, convictions — have only led to more depredations; every seeming defeat of unlawful power becomes instead a springboard for its further advancement. There is no reason to think it will be any different this time.

To be sure, Stevens and his allies fought a valiant rear-guard action on behalf of liberty. They could have restricted their response to the narrow technical points at issue in the case, but instead they took a broad scythe to the rank undergrowth of legal perversion spawned by the White House and its chief constitutional corrupter, David Addington, the ruthless vizier to Vice President Dick Cheney.

As The New Yorker reports, all laws now pass through the hands of this unelected factotum, who feverishly screens them for any possible encroachments on presidential power — then writes the “signing statements” that Bush appends to every major piece of legislation, declaring that he will follow the new law, or not, as it suits him.

“I’m the decider,” as Bush likes to say in his cretinous playground patois. But it is Addington and Cheney who have sown the noxious weeds of tyranny that Bush so happily grazes upon.

So there was rich irony in seeing their malevolent system chastised by Stevens, a conservative Republican whose 1975 appointment by President Gerald Ford was certainly handled by Ford’s powerful chief of staff: an ambitious apparatchik named Dick Cheney. And the Stevens decision would indeed be a landmark ruling, a return to sanity — if we were still in an era where the institutions of American government and society were actually functional, and officeholders felt bound by law. But if there is no political will in the American establishment to enforce the ruling, it will be nothing more than a pretty ornament for the republic’s coffin.

And where does that will exist? Not in Congress, not in the media, not in the streets — and certainly not in the confused, craven Democratic opposition.
Yet the true nature of the regime’s wide-ranging war on liberty has been glaringly obvious for years. We’ve been writing here about Bush’s power grab since November 2001, when we noted that he had given himself the right to order the killing or incarceration of anyone on earth whom he arbitrarily deemed a terrorist — or even a terrorist suspect. This was reported openly at the time, with approval from the gung-ho corporate media and the U.S. political establishment, with record-breaking poll numbers for Bush and with nary a peep from the Democrats. The first press reports of tortured captives quickly followed, again without controversy.

Indeed, for all its reputed obsession with secrecy, the Bush regime has been remarkably open about its usurpations. “Extrajudicial killing,” torture, indefinite detention, mass surveillance, defiance of court rulings and Congress, employment of death squads, an unprovoked war of aggression — all have been carried out openly, readily apparent to anyone with access to mainstream media sources. That the Supreme Court has only now challenged the essence of Bush’s claim to authoritarian power is poignant testimony to how deep the rot of tyranny has spread.

Bush’s reaction to the ruling is more evidence of the decay. After a vague, haughty promise to “look at the findings” — rather than simply obey them, as the law requires — Bush declared: “One thing I’m not going to do, though, is I’m not going to jeopardize the safety of the American people. People have got to understand that.” Thus, in his mind, the circular reasoning that forms the core of his authoritarian philosophy remains intact: Any action that he arbitrarily declares necessary to ensure “the safety of the American people” cannot be restrained by laws or courts.

Already, the lickspittle, lock-step Congress is preparing to belch forth laws to retroactively legalize past Bush crimes and countenance future offenses.

As legal scholar Mark Garber notes, this will likely satisfy at least one of the court’s wavering moderates when the next test of Bush’s tyranny comes around, sinking the razor-thin majority for liberty — which will soon disappear in any case when the ancient Stevens shuffles off this mortal coil. His bold stroke for freedom was magic indeed, but it may prove, in the corrupted currents of this world, to be such stuff as dreams are made on.