Wednesday, September 10, 2003

Forgetting how we felt

Ashcroft, taking his Patriot Act roadshow to NY, says that critics of the Act “have forgotten how we felt” on 9/11. Yeah, try to be scared shitless again, you were so much more docile when you were scared shitless.

Missed the D. presidential debate, since I sort of watched one of those last week. That one’s focus was Hispanics, this one was blacks. Naturally, Lieberman tried to appeal to his homies by attacking Dean for being insufficiently pro-Israel. Which still has to be better than his attempt at Spanish last week. Dean denied that his comment about not choosing sides between Israel and Palestine meant reducing support for Israel in any way. Dean may complain about Kerry et al giving a blank check to Bush, but in the end Israel will always get its blank check.

Al Sharpton, addressing the D Party, said "We help take you to the dance and you leave with right-wingers. In 2004, if we take you to the party, you go home with us or we don't take you to the party." Yeah, but if they try to go home with Sharpton, they’ll never be able to get a taxi to stop for them. Also, he’d get whatever that is he uses in his hair all over the pillow.

Also missed this week’s Cal. goober debate because really enough already. Everyone attacked Davis for the joke about Ahh-nuld not being able to pronounce California. Oddly enough, that pissed off Arianna. And Peter Camejo, who said, "Implied in that is a racist comment — 'It is only we, the Europeans who are here who have established the language, we are the only legitimate people here.'” Europeans? Ahhh-nuld is a European, that was the whole point.

The state senate also jumped in, actually voting that Davis should apologize. That’s just silly. No one even offered an amendment that Bush should stop saying nookyular.

The FCC has allowed the Howard Stern show to have Ahhhh-nuld on without having to give equal time to what the LA Times stupidly calls the 135 other candidates. Stern and Ahhhhh-nuld should have a lot to talk about.

A piece in the Columbia Journalism Review asks why Bush gets away with being such a big liar. It gets half-way to an answer, which is that journalistic pretenses and conventions of objectivity have led them to treat factual issues like they treat opinions of policy, presenting opposing viewpoints and not questioning the veracity of what is presented as factual.

Rummy on McNeil-Lehrer today, in full-tilt folksy mode. Evidently the reason for having a relatively small number of troops in Iraq is that the Soviet Union had a large number of troops in Afghanistan and lost. Yeah, the logic escapes me too.

I mentioned yesterday Cal. driver’s licenses being given to illegal whositses. 38 R members of the legislature have asked Ashcroft to make Cal. driver’s licenses invalid as a form of identification for, say, getting on an airplane. The letter from the legislators falsely states that driver’s licenses would be issued with no proof of identity, when a birth certificate and some other form of id are in fact required.

Standing next to Dan Quayle today as his bust was unveiled, GeeDubya said that history will be kind to Quayle. Yeah, standing next to Shrub, he doesn’t look quite so stupid, does he? The bust was carved out of solid white marble, just like Quayle’s own head.

The Bush Admin files a brief in a Supreme Court, trying to force states to use scholarship money to train people for the priesthood.

China issues new rules banning police from using torture, threats or deception to extract confessions. They will also theoretically not be able to arrest, fine and “re-educate” vagrants, prostitutes, and illegal migrants (which I take to be Chinese without permission to move between regions, not foreigners) without any legal procedure.

From the Daily Telegraph: “An Austrian man seen playing the flute with both hands as he drove at 80mph on a German autobahn faces a £35 fine. He told police in Traunstein that he had not been blowing, only practising.”

Rummy says he won’t bother with even the kangarooish trials for Guantanamo detainees, he’ll just keep them around forever, or until sweetness and lightness prevail in all the nations of the earth forever and ever amen.

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