Saturday, February 17, 2007

Just For Laughs

In my office, that person is me.

A hilarious clip from Canadian TV (2000) with bonus appearances by Mike Huckabee, Chimpy McFlightsuit, and Tom Vilsack (via liberal catnip, a blog I recently discovered & mean to add to the blog roll. Note to self, update blogroll!)

Bob Geiger's Saturday Cartoons

Via Democratic Veteran, read Anthony Bourdain's takedown of the current 'chefs' on The Food Network.

Presidential candidate and serial liar John McCain comes out in favor of abstinence for the unmarried in his campaign today. Problem? Apparently Mr. FlipFlop Express was, himself, somewhat of a get-it-on-john. Whoops!

Friday, February 16, 2007

Hard to Keep Up

Republican shenanigans are too numerous to catalogue. I'll try, but these are the tip of the iceberg.

Once again, Bush is sending troops into Iraq without the necessary armor to protect Humvees from IEDs.

And when those soldiers are wounded as a result of Bushco's incompetence, the Pentagon is now refusing to let VA doctors see medical records from field treatment for the poor kids they're treating at Walter Reed and other US hospitals. Sick bastards.

Dick Cheney's son-in-law scuttles chemical plant security.

Nevada Governor investigated for receiving 'gifts' from contractors.

Alaskan Congressman uses false Lincoln quote (published in the Washington Times this week, also) on the floor of the House.

The Justice Department's top environmental prosecutor signed a consent decree with ConocoPhillips. Problem? She was dating their top lobbyist, and they just bought a house together.

As an antidote to all this bad news, I recommend watching Ohio Representative Tim Ryan's speech on the floor of the House yesterday, at this diary on dailykos. Now that's how I want Democrats to respond. Tough and on point.

[Republicans try to shout him down with a parliamentary question}
I will not yield.

Now let me speak to the resolution. This is very simple. It says two things. We support our troops and we do not support escalation. It's very simple. And here's why.

We have already done this. Mr. Speaker; we've already done this, we've already tried the escalation, and it HAS. NOT. WORKED. From November to January '05, we escalated by 18,000 troops, boots on the ground, and the number of daily attacks increased by 17%. From June to October of '05, we increased by 21,000 boots on the ground, and the number of dialy attacks increased by 29%. And from May to November of '06, 17,000 more boots on the ground, and the number of daily attacks increased by 80%.

This escalation has not worked, and it will not work. The number of insurgents has increased from 5,000 in '03 to between 20,000 and 30,000 in October '06.

So this is very simple. And I wanna make just a few more points Mr. Speaker, and one is this: with the last vote for the war, no matter which party you are in or how you voted, we assumed that the President and the Secretary of Defense would send our troops over there with the proper equipment. But with this escalation, Mr. Speaker, we know that the 21,500 troops that are going to go over there will not have the proper Humvee kits, up-armor for their Humvees, they won't have the proper jamming devices or enough of them, and the won't have have the number of trucks that they need. Period, dot. You now know it.

So if you vote against this resolution, you're voting to send our troops over there without the proper equipment. Before it could be excused. Because we trusted the president and assumed, but now we know.

And finally, Mr. Speaker, we've heard a lot over the past couple days about the American Revolution, and the Civil War, and World War Two. Well Mr. Speaker, our President today is not Washington, he is not Lincoln, and he is not Roosevelt. And so I think our Republican colleagues should take the advice of the Secretary of Defense, and that is YOU GO TO WAR WITH THE PRESIDENT YOU HAVE. You don't go to war with the President you wish you had.

I yield back the balance of my time.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Nancy Pelosi's Got a Blog

And it's pretty good. Be sure to watch the statements of the Democratic veterans opposing Chimpy's escalation plan.

The Gavel

Sad, Then Happy News

Sad: The New York Times and the Washington Post (aka Pravda and the Soviet News Agency) violating their anonymous news policies and ONCE AGAIN letting the Bush Administration gin up a false case for war: Glenn Greenwald (now at, you have to watch an ad to read it, but it's worth it).

But then, I can't tell you how happy this little story made me:

Look at the picture of Chimpy McFlightsuit in this WaPo article trying to get a 7-year-old boy to stop flashing the peace sign. Those kids were smart:

As Bush chatted with some children, other youngsters were overheard by a pool reporter.

"He's my favorite president," one said.

"My favorite president is President Obama," another replied.

"Who's that?"

"He's the first black president."

Hat tip to Gristmill

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Footie News

By Stephen Dunn, Getty Images
Jimmy Conrad celebrates his first international goal, a score that put the U.S. up 1-0 over Mexico. (USA Toady)

"The Bake, Boca & Deuce Show at Craven Cottage" Yanks Abroad: FULHAM'S AMERICAN ROOTS

US Women's National Team coach Greg Ryan has named his squad for the Algarve Cup next month; Shannon Boxx is back from injury.

The draw for the Copa America tournament was today, and as usual, the US is in the Group of Death (three World Cup qualifying teams + Columbia)

Tim Howard will sign a five-year contract and make his move from Manchester United to Everton permanent (USA Today/ icLiverpool has a nice article on Timmy, too.)

My Soccer Blog has player rankings for the US players for the US-Mexico game last week.

When you can't get to the TV, crazed footie fans, you can watch SkySports on your computer at this website. Scroll down, it's in a box on the right. (hat tip to 101 Great Goals)

Video highlights: 12 best goals around the world in January (YouTube, via 101 Great Goals)

10 best goals in England's Championship this year

Don't miss Zinedine Zidane's Top Ten Goals; what ball control skills (YouTube via Who Ate All The Pies)

Another Corporation Smears Democrats

RawStory: An image of bondage gear is then shown, with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi then depicted in a dominatrix outfit while the associated jingle declares that "Love is free with Pelosi":

This time it's Blue Mountain Greeting Company, a subsidiary of American GreetingsInteractive which is owned by American Greetings.

I won't be buying any American Greetings cards until I see a full, widely-disseminated apology for this crap. Of course, there is no Love Republican Style card. It wouldn't be as easy to photoshop the Rethugs stealing our money to give it to Halliburton and oil companies. And the images of Abu Ghraib aren't exactly holiday fare.

RawStory: National greeting card company carrying 'Love Democratic style' card with Pelosi, others in bondage

Video Evidence: John McCain's FlipFlopping Express

Go watch this video at and see John McCain swinging as the wind blows. I can't wait until someone puts together a video like this on the Mittwit. (Hey, guess what? Some of it's on YouTube already; this is Romney lying to the people of Massachusetts in 1994 when he was running against Ted Kennedy.) Romney claimed to be pro-choice when he ran for Massachusetts governor four years ago, and today he says he's always been anti-abortion. Huh? He'll say anything to win; that's true of every one of these sleazeball Republicans running for President. Rudy Giulani used to be liberal on all social issues, but he'll be holding hands with Jerry Falwell in a few months.

RIP Charles Langford, Lawyer for Rosa Parks

Rosa Parks leaving the Montgomery courthouse with her attorney, Charles Langford. Feb. 22, 1956. (photo via Academy of Achievement)

Farewell to a lawyer whose work changed our world.

Montgomery (AL) Advertiser: Editorial: Langford crucial to bus boycott

[H]e was best known as one of the attorneys for Rosa Parks and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. during the Montgomery Bus Boycott that began in 1955.

Langford assisted another young black lawyer, Fred Gray, in representing Parks during her trial and appeal for refusing to give up her seat on a city bus.

Langford and Gray also represented King and about 90 other Montgomerians when they were accused of violating the state's anti-boycott law.

Langford also was one of the team of attorneys who filed the Browder vs. Gayle lawsuit that ultimately resulted in Montgomery's segregated bus system being declared unconstitutional. The ruling ended the bus boycott after 381 days and served as a major step toward ending racial discrimination in public transportation nationally.

Montgomery (AL) Advertiser: Civil rights lawyer, veteran lawmaker Charles Langford dies

LATimes: Charles Langford, 84; Rosa Parks' lawyer and Alabama politician

WaPo: Alabama Senator Charles Langford; Rosa Parks's Lawyer

Happy Valentine's Day

Sailor's Valentine

The History Channel: The History of Valentine's Day

Stories I Missed While I Was On Vacation

Photo via 750 Volts

The U.S. drop-shipped 363 tons of cold, hard cash, the long green, on pallets to Baghdad in the days before the Coalition Provisional Government turned the reins over to the Iraqis. That's 4 BILLION dollars in $100 bills for those of you keeping score at home, the largest ever shipment by the Federal Reserve Bank. Think about that when you're paying your taxes in April. Think harder about that when you're voting in November!

Boston freaks out over a guerrilla marketing scheme involving light boxes. Do terrorists usually put brightly colored lights on their bombs?

Tim Russert's reputation in tatters: Dick Cheney's press flack testifies that they go to Press the Meat so they can control their message (Timmuh won't ask any hard questions); Pumpkinhead himself testifies that all his conversations with government officials are presumptively off the record. As Dan Froomkin says, that's not reporting, that's enabling.

Joe Biden calls Obama "the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy". Obama was not amused: "I didn't take Senator Biden's comments personally, but obviously they are historically inaccurate. After all, we've had presidential candidates like Jesse Jackson, Shirley Chisholm, Carol Mosely Braun and Al Sharpton. They gave a voice to many important issues through their campaigns and no one would call them inarticulate."

Senator Tim Johnson (D-SD) is reportedly reading news reports and doing some work from the hospital.

Creepy chuckle by Crawford Caligula, as UPI reports:
At a farewell reception at Blair House for the retiring chief of protocol, Don Ensenat, who was President Bush's Yale roommate, the president shook hands with Washington Life Magazine's Soroush Shehabi. "I'm the grandson of one of the late Shah's ministers," said Soroush, "and I simply want to say one U.S. bomb on Iran and the regime we all despise will remain in power for another 20 or 30 years and 70 million Iranians will become radicalized."

"I know," President Bush answered.

"But does Vice President Cheney know?" asked Soroush.

President Bush chuckled and walked away.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Vacation Book Report #10

The Bright Forever (2005) by Lee Martin

**** out of five

Coach Mom received this book from my sister for Christmas and it is just not her cup of tea. She told me she couldn't read it because it was "all over the place, a different chapter for each character, and the first chapter is just two sentences. What kind of writing is that?" While all these statements are true, the cover also said it was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for fiction, so I gave it a go.

The story: In a small midwest town, a nine-year girl disappears after riding her bike to the library after dinner to return her overdue books. Her math tutor and his down-on-his-luck neighbor are suspects. The suspects and the girl's family tell their stories of what happened, as do many others in the community.
The book got me through our flight from the Bahamas to Ft. Lauderdale, a two-hour layover, and most of our flight to Boston. I felt warmly towards the book while I was reading it, but it seems less substantial as I think about it today. Partly I liked it because it was set in a small town in 1971, and I knew all the references, from pop culture to the security of small town life. I had pretty much figured out whodunit 3/4 of the way through, but wanting to know exactly what happened kept me reading. The prose is a lot leaner than the last two lush fiction writers I read.

Final stats:

10 books read;

2 nonfiction, 7 fiction, 1 falsely labeled nonfiction but mostly made up;

authors: 4 female, 6 male;

rankings: one 5-star, two 4 1/2 star, two 4 star, one 3 1/2 star, two 3 star, one 2 1/2 star, one no star.