Friday, May 22, 2009

This Friday's Boobie

Another Friday, another Boobie.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Why Can't We Be Rid of The Cheney?

Correct me if I'm right, but The Cheney doesn't hold any office, does he? He's an ex-VP, so he has the same gravitas as Dan Quayle. His only claim to fame is being the most evil, un-American, yet (so far) un-indicted war criminal in modern history. Why is he on my TV?.
Somehow the 'debate' on national security is now a game show, where the President's speech must be 'balanced' with a voice from the 'opposition' to provide 'fairness', but why the hell is The Cheney that voice? I must have missed the part of the Shrub administration where the opposition had to be given "equal time and respect", although Al Gore was allowed to be the subject of media ridicule from time to time.
But The Cheney is still spreading his lies, and the networks still pay attention. Today The Cheney cited the national security context as one in which they foremost fear was "a 9/11 with weapons of mass destruction.The Cheney said "al Qaeda was seeking nuclear weapons and that because Iraq had "known ties" to terrorists, the Bush administration focused on Iraq because it was a regime that "might transfer such weapons to terrorists." The old "Saddam-Al-Qaeda-WMD" story that has been shown to be false since it began, and is now known to be the product of torture. And The Cheney felt no shame about stating his own support for torturing detainees:

"In top secret meetings about enhanced interrogations, I made my own beliefs clear. I was and remain a strong proponent of our enhanced interrogation program."

Brief memo to The Cheney: the Fifth Amendment doesn't really help if you make the statement on national TV. When you're finally on trial for your numerous crimes, they will use your own words against you.
But I'm still wondering why the hell anyone is putting you on my TV. If I wanted to watch a horror movie, I want good looking women between the scary parts. The Cheney should be in prison, not on TV.

(Added) The only "good" thing about The Cheney is that he proved that there are worse things than Richard Nixon, but that the country will survive them.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Not Quite the Strangest Proposal I've Read

This is certainly among the stranger proposals ever made to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict (it's never going to happen, but it is an amusing idea):

A 12-year-old Iranian schoolboy who hopes to unseat hardline president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has vowed that, if elected, he will resettle Israelis in Hawaii, The Scotsman reported on Friday.

"I will buy Hawaii, Obama's birthplace, from the United States and lease it to the Israelis who will go to live there - so that they don't kill children in Gaza," the Scottish daily quoted presidential candidate Kourosh Mozouni as saying.

The paper said Mozouni made the comments to reporters after he turned up to register holding his father's hand and waving a written campaign manifesto.

I didn't know that twelve-year-olds were even allowed to run for President in Iran, but lets face it: he's probably more mature than Ahmadinejad.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Yay for Hubble

I admit that I'm a "space junkie" and I can waste hours looking at Hubble's photos of other galaxies. So I'm really happy that the service mission appears to be a success. This one:

May 10, 2009: The Hubble community bids farewell to the soon-to-be decommissioned Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2) onboard the Hubble Space Telescope. In tribute to Hubble's longest-running optical camera, planetary nebula K 4-55 has been imaged as WFPC2's final "pretty picture."

Thanks to the service mission we should enjoy even deeper photos for at least another 10 years, which is great news. Sometimes it helps to take a break from politics and realize what a tiny little part of the universe we occupy.

Service mission updates here:

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Blaming Pelosi

Gotta love the latest rethug (Gingrich/Boehner) torture strategy: It's all Nancy Pelosi's fault. She was briefed by the CIA (maybe kinda sort of) that "enhanced interrogation" might be used, so she's responsible for everything that followed. When in doubt, blame a Democrat.
Of course this is ridiculous. Pelosi was House MINORITY leader in 2002-2003. She didn't (and couldn't) authorize, justify, or initiate torture. Shrub and the Cheney bear the sole responsibility for the appalling violations of national and international law, human rights, and the commission of war crimes. The Pelosi diversion is an attempt to distract the public away from the prosecution of the actual criminals; a variation of the childhood excuse "Johnny did it, too" defense. It didn't work with Mom when we were kids, and it shouldn't work in the "adult" world, either. Especially when we're talking about the most horrific crimes ever committed in the name of "America".
Even the most basic issue of Pelosi's possible complicity is rather weak. She says the briefings were vague and unspecific, that waterboarding could be used but not saying that it was already in use. Which makes sense. I doubt that the CIA came right out and said "we're torturing people", but rather left an opening for "plausible deniability" for all parties. Does this clear Pelosi? No. If she were a truly moral leader, she should have been screaming "STOP" at the very thought of America engaging in torture. But Nancy Pelosi is NOT a truly moral leader. She is a creature of congress who long ago sold out any principles she might have had in her pursuit of position and power on capitol hill. She is guilty of standing silent while the crime was committed, but that in no way absolves those who actually committed the crime.
Torture is wrong. Torture is always wrong. The (totally unrealistic) "ticking time bomb" scenarios DO NOT justify torture, nor does the patent lie that "it works". And the Shrub/Cheney torture program wasn't even focused on preventing another terrorist attack (which still isn't justified), but rather to promote a war with Iraq. A key revelation in last month’s Senate Armed Services Committee report on detainees — that torture was used to try to coerce prisoners into “confirming” a bogus Al Qaeda-Saddam Hussein link to sell that war — is finally attracting attention. The false confessions extracted from detainees were used by Shrub, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, and Powell,et al.,as "evidence" of the need to invade Iraq and remove Saddam. It was all a pack of lies, and it is the greatest crime in the history of American government. It is our international shame, and that shame will remain until the guilty are held accountable.
Pelosi may be guilty of complicity, but she is not the party responsible for the crime. Don't let the guilty use her to distract you from that basic fact. The Shrub administration is guilty of committing war crimes including torture. They are the ones who need to be tried and convicted.

Added: No doubt that Obama is trying to take the easy way out; doing nothing and hoping the issue will just go away. I'm not in any way surprised, but I think he's wrong. The enormity of the crimes demands investigation and prosecution, regardless of what Obama wants, and a "truth commission" or congressional investigation are likely inevitable.

Added2: See also Marcy Wheeler "Dick Cheney, Torture, Iraq, and Valerie Plame", and Think Progress "a disgraced Republican is attacking Pelosi". I'm not alone in my opinion.

Added3:Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) has written a poem "Fancy Nancy," to cast blame on Pelosi. It's as bad, or even worse, that you might have expected.