Saturday, July 31, 2004

Party Animals

Turns out that anciant Peruvians knew how to have a good time. Is this why the Incas fell?

Kerry's Real Liability

Kerry can't live without the money he drains off the women he marries. And so, if Theresa wants a place in the spotlight, he's going to give it to her. But she's going to cost him votes. And it's not her "edgy style," as Robert Novak calls it. It's her snooty, haughty, elitist arrogance.

At What Cost?

Well, we finally got the French onboard, tentatively anyway. The French believe in words more than action. And, they didn't even want harsh words.

The U.N. Security Council adopted a U.S.-authored resolution Friday threatening action if the Sudanese government fails to rein in rampaging Arab militias within 30 days.

The resolution passed 13-0 after the U.S. changed the language Thursday, dropping the term "sanctions" to win over countries reluctant to back an explicit threat. At the same time, the resolution includes an implicit warning of penalties if the government does not cooperate.

How many Sudanese died or will continue to die owing to French intransigience on Sudan?

They Know He's Lying

The crazy wing of the Democratic Party plans to work for John Kerry despited the moderate tone of the convention.

Now that the convention has come to an end, many of America's most liberal voters are finding that their dislike of President Bush exceeds their disappointment with Kerry. Their slogan: "Anybody but Bush."

Yes, there is ample time between now and November for them to defect from the Democratic ranks. But if Kerry can keep their support stitched together, it could prove critical to his success in what promises to be a close election.

Friday, July 30, 2004

Didn't The Word Hate The US Before Bush?

Jonah Goldberg reminds us that the United States had enemies long before the liberation of Iraq.

In 1999, Bill Clinton needed 10,000 policemen to protect him from Greek activists who aimed to firebomb him. Protestors in Athens continually pulled down a statue of Harry Truman.

Don't the Dems remember the anti-globalization movement of the 1990s? Have they already purged from the memory banks those images of scruffy Luddites burning American flags and razing any McDonald's in their path?

Yes, it's wonderful that John Kerry speaks French. But I doubt he can talk the French out of a reflexive anti-Americanism they cultivated for decades before Bush entered office. During the 1990s, remember, French bookstores were festooned with anti-American treatises like "Who Is Killing France? The American Strategy" and "American Totalitarianism." "No Thanks, Uncle Sam," written by a member of the French Parliament, was a bestseller. He concluded, "It is appropriate to be downright anti-American."

Thank Your John McCain

And the New York Times, and The Washington Post, and CNN and CBS and ABC and NBC.......

As anyone whose mind is governed by thought rather than emotion could have predicted, McCain-Feingold is an abject failure. Everything that its promoter thought was wrong with politics have only been made worse.

I told you so.

What Really Scares The Democrats

I had no idea that George W. Bush was so formidable. There were snipers and machine guns on rooftops around the Fleet Center in Boston, where the Democrats just concluded their national convention. The Massachusetts National Guard was on alert. There were coils of barbed wire and battalions of riot police. Helicopters and probably even fighter planes were flying cover over the city. Why? Well according to Ted Kennedy, “the only thing we have to fear is four more years of George Bush."

The only thing that America has to fear is another four years of George W. Bush as president? Is that what all that firepower was about – to defend Democrats from George W. Bush?

Well so it would seem. The New York Times did a word count on the speeches given at the convention and one of the least spoken words was “terrorism.”

Truly, this has become the party of Michael Moore. Republicans are expected to denounce their kooks. Democrats embrace theirs. Michael Moore was accorded honors and deference generally reserved for conquering heroes. He has insisted all along that the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks were no big thing. Only 3000 people died, he argued on CNN’s Larry King Live. According to Moore, America needs to put the attack in perspective. There are, after all, nearly 300 million Americans. The chances of any one of us dying in the next such attack are only slightly greater than winning the lottery.

At least, that’s how Michael Moore sees it. And, it would appear that the Democratic Party has come around to his way of thinking.

If we are to believe recent news stories, Bush is nearly omnipotent. Somehow, it was a Republican dirty trick that John Kerry posed for photographs dressed in a “bunny suit” while on a tour of the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

After the obviously posed pictures appeared on the NASA website and were circulated on the internet, Kerry’s campaign manager cried that the photos were a Republican “dirty trick!”

"This was a leaked photo," complained Mary Beth Cahill. "This was a legitimate tour of a NASA facility, and this photograph came out of absolutely nowhere. We were surprised then. We aren't surprised now," she said.

My goodness, that George W. Bush is a crafty fellow. He tricked the Democratic nominee into putting the bunny suit on, baited him into posing for the camera, then according to NASA, even encouraged the photographer to develop and release the photos quickly. For a guy who’s supposedly dumber than a bag of hammers, that Bush fellow sure has an easy time manipulating Democrats. No wonder the Democrats think that they need surround themselves with barbed wire.

Earlier in this campaign, Bush tricked Kerry into that famous, “I voted for the 87 billion dollars, before I voted against it” line.

So frightened of Bush’s machinations are Democrats that former Secretary of State under ex-president Bill Clinton Madelleine Albright expressed her fear that Bush had already captured Osama bin Laden and was hiding him in a cave someplace, only waiting until just before the election to reveal the capture.

Paranoia has long infected the Kerry campaign. In the very early stages of Kerry’s campaign, White House press secretary Ari Fleischer cracked a very small joke about Kerry’s obsession to gain French approval, noting that Kerry, “looked French.” Kerry, Theresa Heinz-Kerry, and their spokespersons absolutely went ballistic.

But now that I think about it, Democrats have always imagined that the Bush family was orchestrating all sorts of double secret machinations. The Democrats honestly believed that, in 1980, while Jimmy Carter was president, George Bush the elder boarded an SR 71 spy plane and secretly flew to Iran to strike a deal with the mullahs that would keep the hostages imprisoned until after the election.

Keep in mind. These weird conspiracy theories aren’t the fantasies of fringe kooks living in the mountains, standing watch for black helicopters. These theories have been embraced by the Democratic party’s mainstream.

If they really believe this, then it’s not surprising that the hero of Chappaquiddick (another Republican plot, I’m sure) could declare Bush a greater danger than Al Qaida, and not get laughed off the stage.

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Even Ma;ureen Dowd Noticed!

It has to be pretty vivid before Maureen Dowd notices. Therefore, the Democrats attempts to appear Republican must be very obvious.

The Democrats think the way to overthrow the Republicans is to mimic Republicans. Democratic rivalries are tamped down; liberal losers are kept offstage or out of prime time; the positive message - strength, heroism and patriotism - is relentlessly drummed in. The Swift boat crewmen are toted everywhere to vouch that John Kerry is a comrade, not just a set of political calculations.


Larry Elders marvels at the mainstream media's unabashed attempts to save Sandy Berger, and John Kerry.

In preparing for his appearance before the 9/11 commission, Berger, at former President Clinton's request, spent three days at the National Archives. Investigators now think Berger illegally took papers from the archives. But Berger calls his removal of the documents an "honest mistake." A key advisor to presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry, Berger promptly resigned from Kerry's campaign. The day the story broke, The New York Times online placed it on page 17. On television, CBS's Dan Rather cautioned viewers that the story "was triggered by a carefully orchestrated leak about Berger, and the timing of it appears to be no coincidence."

Now examine how the media -- on its own -- lowered Berger's stature in the Kerry campaign.
Way back in May 2004, The Washington Post called Berger "a top Kerry advisor." After the scandal, the Post busted him down to "informal advisor." Similarly, the Los Angeles Times in May called Berger a "Kerry foreign policy advisor." It now tags him as an "unpaid consultant." The Boston Globe in May called Berger a "top advisor." Now the paper relegates him to "informal advisor."

So Passionate About So Little

George Will wonders - what are the Democrats so riled about? Isn't John Kerry saying everything he can to be more Republican that George W. Bush?

And, isn't George W. Bush just about the most Democratic Republican president ever?

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Mr Columbine Has Armed Guards?

Holy Rosy Batman! Another Hollywood gun contol nut has armed body guards.

It's A Plot! A Plot I Say!

Black helicopters are circling all around the Democrats these days.

The latest example of paranoia is Democratic outrage at photos of the senator in a clean suit at NASA.

The campaign of Sen. John Kerry yesterday accused NASA of leaking a widely circulated photo that shows the candidate wrapped from top to bottom in a baby blue "bunny suit," implying that it was a "dirty trick."
One campaign official told The Washington Times last night: "All I can say is it was not an authorized release."
But the National Aeronautics and Space Administration told Fox News that the Kerry team saw the photos before publication and passed on their release.
A NASA spokesman told the top-rated cable network that the images were given to the Kerry campaign to review before several were posted on the Kennedy Space Center Web site.
In no way were photographs "leaked," the spokesman said.
But campaign manager Mary Beth Cahill said in an interview with Fox, "This was a leaked photo."
She said the campaign never was told that the photographs, which are drawing ridicule and comparison with the Michael Dukakis "tank" photo on the Internet and talk radio, would be taken during a campaign stop at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
When interviewer Brit Hume asked Miss Cahill whether "you smell a dirty trick here" from the apolitical space agency, she did not answer directly, but rather asked rhetorically: "What do you think?"

Howell Raines Never Would Have Stood For This!

The New York Times actually published an article about good things happening in Iraq. And during the Democratic National Convention too!

There's just no discipline at the Gray Lady anymore.

Al Sharpton Shows Us The Way

Making the streets safer, the gospel according to Al.

How to make America less secure, brought to you by speakers at the Democratic National Convention.

Ignore The Problem, And It Will Go Away

According Bill Clinton, Americans were safe when he left office, and they're unsafe now because he's no longer in office. Claudia Rosset doesn't equate feelings with reality.

She thinks we were in great peril when Clinton left office. We just didn't know it for 71/2 months.

Mr. Clinton finished, of course, in January, 2001, by which time al Qaeda's training camps, on Mr. Clinton's watch, had already churned out thousands of terrorists we've been trying to catch ever since. By that time, the Sept. 11 plot was just eight months from completion; our intelligence community was if possible even dumber than it is now; Iran had already been working for at least half a decade toward its nuclear bomb; North Korea had already been cheating for years on Mr. Clinton's "Agreed Framework" nuclear freeze; Arafat's intifada had crowned the Clinton photo-op forays into the Middle East; and Saddam Hussein, having kicked out the United Nations weapons inspectors in 1998, was busy cashing in bigtime on the Clinton-launched United Nations Oil-for-Food program, buying influence and blackmail opportunities among our allies, some of them the very same allies Mr. Bush has alienated, pushed away, burned his bridges to . . .

Tell Me You Love Me

Democrats love being lied to. Did you all see how they swooned over Bill Clinton?

The Wall Street Journal interjects a few "ahems" into Clinton fanciful rewrite of the 1990's.

Ah, the glorious, roaring 1990s. Bill Clinton got elected, raised taxes on the rich so that the budget deficit and interest rates fell, and thus kicked off one of the great booms in economic history. Then Al Gore lost the 2000 election--sorry, had it stolen--President Bush cut taxes, and the economy more or less immediately went to hell.

In case you've missed the speeches, this is one of the major story lines emerging from this week's Democratic conclave in Boston. As Mr. Clinton boasted in his Monday stemwinder, he left America in 2001 with "peace and prosperity." So elect John Kerry, we are told, and he'll take us back to the Clinton policies, starting once again with a tax increase that will reduce the deficit and return us to the happy days before Osama bin Laden, Enron, and the "middle-class squeeze."

Friday, July 23, 2004

Follower Of The Pack

As comforting as it is to read that Democratic gubernatorial candidate Christine Gregoire values the will of the people and opposes higher taxes, there is little in her history that gives this observer confidence that she actually adheres to either position.
At a debate Wednesday, the reigning attorney general, who would very much like to be governor, declared her opposition to a state income tax, basing her opposition upon simple inertia. The legislature doesn't have the courage to bring such tax reform before a skeptical populace. And Christine Gregoire certainly isn't going to risk her career by taking the lead. For the politician with ambitions that extend no further than personal advancement, it's safer to gauge public opinion and mold one's self to fit it. That certainly describes Christine Gregoire.
Both Christine Gregoire and her Democratic primary opponent Ron Sims declared themselves in favor of educated children, good health for all, a cornucopia of high paying jobs, along with clean water and fresh air. In doing so they starkly distinguished themselves from all politicians running for office who oppose such things. Where they did disagree was the issue of taxes. Ron Sims thinks that Washington's coffers need more money. Gregoire said that raising taxes would hobble a fragile economy. She's right of course. But as Sims pointed out, she supports more spending. Where's the money going to come from?
The King County executive professed his belief that Washington would be better off if it substituted some its current revenue stream with an income tax. There is really no good reason not to do so if there were a concomitant reduction in Washington's other taxes. Washington's over-reliance on its sales tax results in wild fluctuations in its revenue stream. And Washington's business and occupation tax, and its property taxes, contribute to its notoriously hostile business climate. Washington would be a better place if its property taxes and its business and occupation taxes were eliminated.
According to Sims, the state needs more cash. In his argument for increased education spending, Ron Sims declared, "You don't grow your economy with stupid, unskilled people." But, without a more favorable business environment, all that Washington's education system will do is turn out skilled workers for other states.
Gregoire has painted herself into the intellectually dishonest position by favoring much higher education spending (a popular position), while opposing higher taxes needed to fund her plans (another popular, but contradictory position). Sims succeeded in demonstrating that her mental Jello simply could not be nailed to the wall.
It's unfortunate that Ron Sims' one good idea will not come to fruition any time soon. Washington would benefit from a income tax, but not for the reason he delineated. He sees it as providing more money for him to spend should he become governor. But it would be much better to institute an income tax if it replaced Washington's far more onerous property and business and occupation taxes.
Republicans instinctively oppose the income tax, probably for the same reasons that Gregoire opposes it, for political expediency. But if they modified that position, they could make Washington a much better state.
Consumer spending fluctuates more wildly than income. Washington's current tax structure results in alternating periods of excess and famine. Unlike Joseph in Genesis, Washington's legislature has never managed to put the excess away for the lean times. As such, during the fat years, the legislature commits to new spending that it cannot sustain when the granaries go empty. An income tax would smooth that out.
Additionally, getting rid of the property and business and occupation taxes would yield a more hospitable environment for both business and property owners, particularly those wishing to retire in their own homes.
Sadly, Washington will continue to suffer under the governance of the personally ambitious rather than the courageous or the visionary. Washington will never enjoy meaningful tax reform until she elects politicians willing to place Washington's future ahead of their own ambitions.
An observation - Wasn't it interesting how quickly the mainstream press swallowed Sandy Berger's explanation that his underwear ate his homework, then got on to the real business of blaming Republicans for leaking details of the investigation? The New York Times best exemplified this bias. The original story was on page A-17. The story implying, without evidence, a Republican plot made the front page.

Next To Fall?

Now that the 9/11 commission has endored the idea of preemption, will Bush clean out the next wasps nest?

Did we invade the wrong country? One of the lessons being drawn from the Sept. 11 report is that Iran was the real threat. It had links to al Qaeda, allowed some of the Sept. 11 hijackers to transit and is today harboring al Qaeda leaders. The Iraq war critics have a new line of attack: We should have done Iran instead of Iraq.

So far, we've been working with Iran through the United Nations, doing thing the French, I mean John Kerry's way, with Iran. And all we've gotten is a good nose thumbing.

Planting Seeds

Sandy Berger is innocent, even though he has confessed. The Bush administration is guilty, even though there is not a shred of evidence.

"This is the third day in a row that the story has changed," Lockhart said. "Did the political operation know? Did [adviser] Karl Rove know? I think it's time for them to come clean, say what they knew, when they knew it, and what role if anything they had in leaking it."

Of course, all a Democrat has to do is drop a hint and the mainstream press will run will carry the water for them.

It's Bush's Fault

The Washington Post discovers the real culprit in the Sandy Berger affair - Republicans.

It's worth noting that news of the months-old investigation of Mr. Berger just happened to leak on the week before the Democratic convention, and two days before the release of the Sept. 11 commission's report -- which covers serious lapses by President Bush as well as President Bill Clinton. Officials at the Bush White House had been briefed on the Berger probe. Could that be a coincidence?

Why doesn't the Post ask Berger's attorney and spinmeister Lanny Davis, who boasts that he invented the preemptive leak, precisely to manipulate the Washington Post?

Wishful Thinking?

An unnamed, high-ranking French official (perhaps on of John Kerry's friends) announced that Lance Armstrong would not return to the Tour de France next year.

If he wins for a record sixth consecutive year Sunday, as seems very likely, Armstrong will not return next year, the official said, but will instead focus on at least one of the two other big Tours, the Giro d'Italia in May and the Vuelta a España in September, and several one-day classics.

Armstrong, the defending champion, had already informed the Tour organizers of his plan, said the official, who did not want to be identified.

That assertion was denied Thursday by Bill Stapleton, Armstrong's agent and the chief executive of Tailwind Sports, which owns Armstrong's Postal Service team.

Right All Along

One theme seems to be running through the 9/11 commmission's report, Bush was right all along. Saddam was seeking weapons of mass destruction, he was supporting international terror, we did need the Patriot Act, and preemption is the way to go.

It Wasn't Theft, Just "Uplifting"

Ah Clintonism is spreading fast. Sandy Berger inadvertantly and innocently stuffed classified documents into his pants and socks, and now we learn that money wasn't stolen from the Oil For Food program, it was "uplifted."

[The Weir Group]said that as part of 15 contracts in Iraq for three different Iraq-based customers, it had in 2000 received - from the UN - £4.2m ($7.7m, €6.3m) in payments that were "uplifted" for work that had not been done. These payments went to an unnamed agent acting for Weir. The company's work in Iraq was organised by Wesco Dubai, a Weir subsidiary based in the Middle East. Weir made the statement in response to newspaper allegations in May. At the time Weir denied the claim.

Mark Selway, chief executive of Weir, said he could not rule out the possibility that the funds had been returned to Mr Hussein's regime. "We may never know where the money ended up," said Mr Selway, adding that he did not want to disclose the name of the agent for security reasons.

Thursday, July 22, 2004

Oh! You Mean That Media Bias!

Larry Elder chronicles some rather egregious examples of media bias.

Consider Bruce Morton's recent CNN piece. He compared Vice President Dick Cheney to Sen. John Edwards, D-N.C., just chosen as Sen. John Kerry's, D-Mass., running mate: "Well, they're different. Boy, are they different. Vice President Cheney -- Mr. Inside, Mr. War (emphasis added), once an aide to young Congressman Donald Rumsfeld, was President Gerald Ford's chief of staff, was a congressman, was the first President Bush's secretary of defense, was -- well, you get the idea. Believes in secrecy, believes in a link between al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein (emphasis added), whether the 9/11 Commission agrees with him or not."

Surely, It's All Your Fault

Nobody knows better than mainstream journalists what's wrong with America. It's racist and sexist. But who is that decides what missing person story to highlight? Why I believe it's the mainstream press.

Did any young black girls or boys vanish in June of 2001? I'm sure they did. But for the rest of that summer, the story was Elizabeth Smart's disappearance.

There was a case nearly identical to Laci Peterson's, but it involved a poor, unattractive hispanic woman. You probably never heard about it.

In truth, it is the very people who lecture us who need to go to sensitivity training.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Another Reason To Be Glad Clinton's Gone

Bill Clinton considers Sandy Berger's theft of classified documents a laughing matter.

"We were all laughing about it on the way over here," the former president said of the investigation into Samuel "Sandy" Berger on classified terrorism documents missing from the National Archives. "People who don't know him might find it hard to believe. But ... all of us who've been in his office have always found him buried beneath papers."

Making Donuts Even Easier

As if it weren't already easy enough to get fat! Krispy Kreme has introduced a new "drinkable donut" for people on the go.

Honest Mistake My Ass!

And that goes for it being a laughing matter.
Glenn Reynolds has collected enough information to put the honest mistake excuse in the grave.

Let Us All Read Them

If the documents that Sandy Berger stole are as harmless as he claims they are, then why not declassify them so we can all read them?

"Written by Richard Clarke for the NSC, the key document was called the Millennium After-Action Review because it dealt with al Qaeda attacks timed for the eve of the Millennium celebrations. In his own 9/11 testimony, Mr. Berger described these al Qaeda plans as "the most serious threat spike of our time in government." He went on to say that they provoked "sustained attention and rigorous actions" from the Administration that ended up saving lives.

But Attorney General John Ashcroft, who has the advantage of having read the document in question, had a different take. In his own 9/11 testimony in April, Mr. Ashcroft recommended that the Commission "study carefully" the after-action memo. He described it as laying out vulnerabilities and calling for aggressive remedies of the type he and the Bush Administration have been criticized for. Mr. Ashcroft further noted that when he took office, this "highly classified review" was "not among" the items he was briefed on during the transition.

Maybe that is because of the potential for embarrassment at the mentality the memo reveals. Mr. Ashcroft testified that the Justice Department's "surveillance and FISA operations were specifically criticized for their glaring weaknesses." The most glaring, of course, were the restrictions on the sharing of critical information between intelligence and law enforcement--even within the FBI itself. This was the infamous "wall of separation" that Clinton Deputy AG Jamie Gorelick instructed the FBI director should "go beyond what is legally required."

Inadvertantly Stuffed Into His Socks

The media has started its intellectual yoga exercises trying to excuse Sandy Berger's theft of highly classified documents critical of the Clinton administration's indifference to terrorism. Working from the Democratic cue sheet, the media suddenly reversed course, ignoring the deed and focusing instead upon the motivations for the leak.

Many Democrats, including former President Clinton (news - web sites) himself, suggested that politics were behind disclosure of the probe only days before Thursday's scheduled release of the Sept. 11 commission report. That report is expected to be highly critical of the government's response to the growing al-Qaida threat, a potential blow to President Bush (news - web sites)'s re-election campaign.

"It's interesting timing," Clinton said at a Denver autograph session for his book, "My Life." Berger served as national security adviser for all of Clinton's second term.

I'd like to know why Sandy Berger was kept on Kerry's payroll nine months after Berger's crime was discovered.

And we all know what would happen to any Republican who did what Berger did.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

The Special Prosecutor

Before Joseph Wilson was expose as a liar, the Justice Department appointed a special prosecutor to investigate his accusations.

The Wall Street Journal thinks that it's just about time for him to close up shop.

Mr. Wilson's defense, in essence, is that the "Republican-written" Senate Intelligence Committee report is a partisan hatchet job. We could forgive people for being taken in by this, considering the way the Committee's ranking Democrat, Jay Rockefeller, has been spinning it over the past week. But the fact is that the three most damning conclusions are contained not in Chairman Pat Roberts's "Additional Views," but in the main body of the report approved by Mr. Rockefeller and seven other Democrats.

And, the Wall Street Journal reminds us that Nation Magazine gave Wilson its "Award for Truth Telling."

He's Looked At War From Both Sides Now

And he still does. John Kerry is trying to be both pro and anti war. Neat trick if you can do it.

Would A Right Wing Racist Still Have A Job

Is Ted Rall a racist? Of course he is.

Monday, July 19, 2004

Body Piercing Gone Awry

Young people just know how to have a really good time.

[Police] found that five young people had erected a bamboo tripod and hung meat hooks from it. A young woman, her feet brushing the surface of the shallow water, dangled from the frame, hooks embedded firmly in her shoulders.

According to a Coast Guard video, she did not seem to mind the hooks.

What Did Kerry Know and When Did He Know It?

John Kerry campaign advisor and former Clinton National Security Advisor Sandy Berger has admitted stealing classified terrorism-related documents.

Berger and his lawyer said Monday night that he knowingly removed handwritten notes he had taken from classified anti-terrorist documents he reviewed at the National Archives by sticking them in his jacket and pants. He also inadvertently took copies of actual classified documents in a leather portfolio, they said.

But, after admitting that he took them intentionally, Berger tries to mimic his former boss: “In the course of reviewing over several days thousands of pages of documents on behalf of the Clinton administration in connection with requests by the Sept. 11 commission, I inadvertently took a few documents from the Archives,” Berger said.

As he now works for John Kerry, it's worth pondering, has John Kerry seen any of these documents? And, what plans did he have for them?

“When I was informed by the Archives that there were documents missing, I immediately returned everything I had except for a few document that I apparently had accidentally discarded,” he said.

Antidote To Reuterville's "News"

Arthur Cherekoff reports the news that other leave behind.

The good news is much underreported and not always easy to find, but clearly it's out there. Taken together with the usual Iraq coverage, it paints a much more balanced and, dare I say it, nuanced picture of a country, which is still waking up from a three-decade-long nightmare and trying against many odds to become normal.

Thank blogs. Otherwise, we might never have gotten even this little trickle of news. As John Leo said, "What's new about the press is that so many people who follow it with a critical eye now have an outlet to howl about inaccuracy and partisanship. The big media used to be able to shrug off critics like this. Now they can't."

Monday, July 12, 2004

Joe Wilson's A Fraud

Mark Steyn summarizes.

Let's weigh their comparative interest in the story. The Financial Times revealed last week that one continental intelligence agency had had a uranium-smuggling operation involving Iraq under surveillance for three years. In return, the only primary investigation initiated by the most powerful nation on the face of the Earth was to send a narcissistic kook from a Saudi-funded think-tank on vacation for a week to sip mint tea with government stooges. He didn't even bother filing a written report, and the ''Bush spurned my advice!'' column he wrote for the Times reads like a bad travelogue: ''Through the haze, I could see camel caravans crossing the Niger river.'' After that, the great narcissist somehow managed to make himself the center of the story -- But hey, enough about Saddam's nuclear ambitions; let's talk about me.

If there was an intelligence failure concerning Niger, it was in sending a nitwit like Joe Wilson in the first place, a man who's investigation, by his own admission, consisted of sitting on his fat, pompous ass, sipping sweet mint tea and entertaining visitors. The investigation deserved more. As Steyn points out: "Niger is a 99.5 percent Sunni Muslim country with the world's second highest birth rate and a load of uranium. It's exactly the sort of place an intelligence agency in the war on terror ought to be keeping an eye on. And that doesn't mean sending Mint Tea Boy to write it up for the travel section."

Joe Wilson's A Fraud

And a liar. Glenn Reynolds is all over the Joe Wilson/yellowcake fallout. And, he's having way too much fun.

So is Andrew Sullivan.

WILSON IS A LIAR: Oh joy. One of the most pompous self-serving "victims" yet to emerge from the debate on the Iraq war now turns out to have some serious 'splaining to do. It turns out his wife did indeed help get him the job to explore Sadddam's contacts in Africa.

Joe Wilson's A Fraud

This just in. Ambassador Joe Wilson is a liar and a fraud. Will the mainstream press apologize, or even correct the record?

"The Committee did not find any evidence that Administration officials attempted to coerce, influence or pressure analysts to change their judgments related to Iraq's weapons of mass destruction capabilities."

So reads Conclusion 83 of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on prewar intelligence on Iraq. The Committee likewise found no evidence of pressure to link Iraq to al Qaeda. So it appears that some of the claims about WMD used by the Bush Administration and others to argue for war in Iraq were mistaken because they were based on erroneous information provided by the CIA.

A few apologies would seem to be in order. Allegations of lying or misleading the nation to war are about the most serious charge that can be leveled against a President. But according to this unanimous study, signed by Jay Rockefeller and seven other Democrats, those frequent charges from prominent Democrats and the media are without merit.

Sunday, July 11, 2004

The Politics Of Spiderman

I'm not kidding. Frank Rich manages to find anti-Bush messages in Spiderman 2, as well as warnings for John Kerry.

As a man locked in a war against terror, Peter Parker could not be further removed from the hubristic bravura of Mr. Bush and his own cinematic model, the Tom Cruise of "Top Gun." There's nothing triumphalist about Spider-Man; he would never declare "Mission Accomplished" after a passing victory, and his very creed is antithetical to the Bush doctrine of pre-emptive war. But neither is he a stand-in for John Kerry. Whatever inner equivocation he suffers over his role as a superhero, he stops playing Hamlet when he has a decision to make. Nor does he follow Mr. Kerry's vainglorious example of turning his own past battles into slick promotional hagiography.

In the end, Frank Rich seems to endorse Peter Parker for president. And why not, liberals have embrace Hollywood fantasy over reality for some time (See Fahrenheit 9/11 and The Day After Tomorrow).

The Enemy Of My Enemy Is Still My Enemy

The anti-American resistance is cracking up. The barbaric suicide car bombings committed by Al Qaida types are repulsing ordinary Iraqis and the Iraqi resistance as well.

Large car-bombings — thought to be carried out more often by foreigners, who make up a tiny percentage of the rebels — have "disgraced the reputation of the resistance," Professor Rasheed said. "And the resistance has worked just as the government has been trying to, to curtail the influence of the foreigners."

And, this may be good news.

The split would seem to be welcome news to the new government of Prime Minister Iyad Allawi. His strategy for combating violence is to divide the insurgency by appealing to the patriotism of Iraqi fighters to reject the presence of foreigners who he claims do not care about Iraq itself. He is promising amnesty for some Iraqis, but threatening to crack down on those who do not accept it.

To that end, Mr. Allawi and other government officials say, he has been meeting with former Baath Party members in the resistance and tribal leaders to convince them that their interests and those of foreign fighters are not the same.

All in all, this news must be very upsetting for Michael Moore.

Who'll Win In November? Who Cares?

George Will points out that Democratic stalling tactics have created an environment in which no president can function, makin it highly unlikely that Kerry or Bush will be able to do much of anything as president.

Under Washington's new scorched-earth ethic of bitter partisanship, there is a supermajority requirement for any significant action. Nothing as important as increasing the progressivity of the income tax or confirming important judges can happen without the support of 60 senators. Both candidates' promises, and their warnings about what the other fellow will do, should cause voters to ask the calming question: Will 60 senators support that?

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Kerry's Values

John Kerry has tried to slip a paper's width between himelf and the disgusting performances at a fundraiser in his honor.

Although Mr. Kerry had told the crowd at the New York fund-raiser that "every single performer" on the bill had "conveyed to you the heart and soul of our country," his campaign on Friday sought to distance Mr. Kerry and his running mate, Senator John Edwards, from the anti-Bush jokes, lyrics and statements of some of the entertainers.

As Democratic US Senator Zel Miller points out, "Last night John Kerry held a fund-raiser in New York that featured performers in a time of war calling the president of the United States `a killer,' `a cheap thug' and `a liar,' " Mr. Miller said, citing media reports of what various entertainers had said. "John Kerry just sat there, grinning like a mule eating briars."

Of course, if John Kerry really believed that Hollywood represented the "heart and soul" of his country, he would release videotapes of the event.

But, It Really Is Bush's Fault. Really!

The Senate report on intelligence failures before the Iraq war puts the entire blame on the CIA and exonerates the Bush Administration. But, the New York Times isn't about to let facts get in the way of unsubstantiated implications.

Although the Senate Intelligence Committee found no evidence that the Bush administration had tried to coerce the C.I.A. to produce exaggerated prewar warnings about Iraq's weapons programs, its findings did little to still the furious debate about whether the White House and the Pentagon tried to influence the agency's conclusions.

One note. Since the Clinton Administration got the same intelligence and also believed that Saddam had WMD's, then how can the political climate be blamed?

Choose Your Liar

Michael Moore claims that, after seeing "Fahrenheit 9/11," Tom Daschle gave him a hug. Daschle, who's running for reelection, claims it never happened.

When asked about Moore's account of a hug after the premiere and the criticism Daschle has received for it, the South Dakota Democrat said he and Moore did not embrace. Daschle said his schedule forced him to arrive late and leave early.

"I know we senators all tend to look alike. But I arrived late, and I had to leave early for Senate votes. I didn't meet Mr. Moore," Daschle said.

In a lengthy Time magazine piece about the movie and its political effects, Richard Corliss reported Moore's criticism of Daschle's leadership and the filmmaker's account of a hug with Daschle.

"At the Washington premiere, Moore sat a few rows behind Daschle. Afterward, says Moore, ‘He gave me a hug and said he felt bad and that we were all gonna fight from now on. I thanked him for being a good sport,'" Corliss wrote.

At most, only one of these liars could be telling the truth. I personally can decide which is more reliable.

Does Edwards Balance Kerry's Dishonesty?

John Edwards does not claim that he was misled into voting for the war. John Edwards makes no bones about the need to bring democracy to Islam if we are to have peace.

Of course, these musing are those of a callow man who needs to grow up.

Just ask John Kerry

Friday, July 09, 2004

The French - Bug Splats On The Grill Of History

Earlier this week, the lower half of the hair styling hall of fame presidential ticket announced that, after winning the election in November, he and his French looking co-star would restore respect for America on the world stage. Gaining international respect is John Kerry-speak for seeking French approval. The Democratic cliché is that going into Iraq without French approval cost us the international community’s respect. Had we only shown France the deference she deserves, the whole Iraq business would have gone swimmingly well. But this nonsense defies history and logic.
First of all, there is no reason to believe that any amount of groveling would have enticed the French into alliance. And, there’s certainly no historical precedent for the French making the world a better place. When one looks around the world, the most squalid and despairing places on Earth are almost all former French colonies.
And, the French didn’t need the Iraq war to hate us. The French hated us in the summer of 1944 when we permitted Charles de Gaulle to lead his impotent Free Frenchman to march into Paris after we and the British had just cleared out the Champs Elysees of Nazis for them. All that showing them that undeserved respect has gained for us has been sixty years of gratuitous insults and an occasional fart in our general direction.
The French don’t’ hate us for our so-called unilateralism. The French hate us because we are Americans. They hate our unique culture. The American culture is driven by a need to excel that forces the French out of their comfort zone. That uniquely American culture was on display most vividly in this last week’s Tour de France. The Lance Armstrong-led United States Postal Service team absolutely crushed the rest of the world in the team time trials in a manner that was uniquely American. The Posties just simply outworked and out prepared the rest of the field.
One did not need a stopwatch to apprehend early on that the Posties’ were going to win big that Wednesday. The organization and discipline of the Postal team was so obviously superior to the European teams that the only question was the margin of victory. Detractors will cry that the Postal Service team simply buys the best riders in the world, much as the New York Yankees hoard all the best baseball players. But the team time trials showed that Americans also train harder than other teams. They emphasize discipline more than other teams. The Posties made their victory official on Wednesday, but they won that race in the months leading up to it.
The only team that came close was another American led team of Phonak. Although the team is European, its leader is an American, Tyler Hamilton, who was once Lance Armstrong’s understudy. Were it not for a series of equipment problems, Hamilton’s team might have challenged Armstrong’s.
While the European riders spend their off-seasons drinking, dancing, debauching and getting fat, the Americans spend their winters training and perfecting equipment.
Anticipating American excellence in the team time trials, the French instituted a new rule this year that essentially subsidized the predictably poor performances of the Europeans. The result was that the Posties were deprived of much of what they had earned. And, isn’t that just what one would predict from the French? Steal by subterfuge what you are unwilling to earn with hard work.
It is this uniquely American drive for excellence that has made us the most productive and prosperous nation on earth. It has also made us the most envied people on Earth.
To understand how pointless it is to engage the French as equals, or even as adults, we need only look at their behavior in the horn of Africa. The greatest ongoing humanitarian disaster in the world today is unfolding in the Sudan. The Muslim Arab north is engaged in the full-scale slaughter of the black Christian south. When the United States attempted to involve the United Nations in stemming this genocide, it was the French who obstructed international solidarity. Clearly the French are less interested in justice, peace, or international cooperation than they are in poking a thumb into America’s eye.

Speaking of Stupid

Does Michael Moore believe that Hans Blix is an American? Blix certainly is stupid. The man who was supposed to be the world's lead weapons ispector believes that the real threat out there is, global warming.

Michael Michael He's Our Man!

Disney turned its back on Michael Moore. But Middle Eastern terrorists are happy to step up and help Michael Moore.

The film industry publication reports that the movie will soon debut in Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman and Bahrain.

“In terms of marketing,” announces, Mr. Moore “is getting a boost from organizations related to Hezbollah.”

Of course, with public utterances like these, it's not at all surprising that terrorists would love Moore:

“The U.S. government started the war with Iraq in order to make it easy for U.S. corporations to do business in other countries. They intend to use cheap labor in those countries, which will make Americans rich.”

Of course, Michael Moore knows a thing or two about stupidity. Consider this pearl of Moore's wisdom: “To bomb Afghanistan,” he mused to NBC's Tim Russert, “I mean, I've never understood this, Tim. I mean, the -- the simple math to me is that 15 of the 19 hijackers were from Saudi Arabia. Now I have to ask, if 15 of the 19 hijackers were from Cuba, would we bomb Bolivia?”

Americans are “possibly the dumbest people on the planet… in thrall to conniving, thieving, smug pricks. We Americans suffer from an enforced ignorance.”

Mr. Moore says that the U.S. “is known for bringing sadness and misery to places around the globe. …It's all part of the same ball of wax, right? The oil companies, Israel, Halliburton."

And then there's this beaut: “Three thousand Americans were killed,” he notes. “There's 290 million Americans, all right? The chance of any of us dying in a terrorist incident is very, very, very small.”

Will Narcissism Work For The Democrats Again?

Bill Clinton was the most narcissisitic president in US history. It would take Kerry and Edwards together to match. What? They have been matched?

Can America endure?

Another thing that is unfair to say but hard not to notice: This may be the most narcissistic ticket in 55 U.S. presidential elections. These two guys really radiate self-awareness.

The oft-seen footage of the two emerging from a car after the VP announcement looked like a ZZ Top video for "Sharp Dressed Man." John Kerry slides a hand down his already smooth tie and deftly buttons his suit jacket. John Edwards checks the flaps on his coat pockets. "Silk suit, black tie." Both of their heads are rotating like satellite dishes scanning for signals. Light is ricocheting off porcelain in every direction. Come November, these two Power Rangers may have just worn out the electorate.

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Nice Hair!

George W. Bush chooses a man who has the credentials and the experience to serve as president if necessary. John Kerry chooses a man with a hair styling that rivals his own.

A Time To Look Back?

We've been performing experiments on children for about two decades now and it might be time to check the results.

It used to be that same sex partnerships were considered an unsuitable environment for a child. Enlightenment changed all that, and it is now common to have children raised by a homosexual parent and his or her partner.

Without a shred of data to back them up, liberals pronounced that children raised in such homes would suffer no harm, if only we knuckle dragging barbarians would accept them.

So far, there is nothing but anecdote to support both sides. The media chooses anecdotes that support their liberal view. Here's an anecdote that doesn't.

What was it like for Cassidy being raised by two women she called "Mom" and "My Pat"?

"When growing up, I always had the feeling of being something unnatural," Cassidy says. "I came out of an unnatural relationship; it was something like I shouldn't be there. On a daily basis, it was something I was conflicted with. I used to wish, honestly that Pat wasn't there."

Why does she oppose same-sex marriage? "It's not something that a seal of approval should be stamped on: We shouldn't say it is a great and wonderful thing and then you have all these kids who later in life will turn around and realize they've been cheated. The adults choose to have that lifestyle and then have a kid. They are fulfilling their emotional needs -- they want to have a child -- and they are not taking into account how that's going to feel to the child; there's a clear difference between having same-sex parents and a mom and a dad."

My Lies

As a private citizen, Kenneth Starr is now free to do something that he could not do as a special prosecutor, publicly rebut Bill Clinton's lies.

It was my task to complete the investigations begun by Bob Fiske, whom Ms. Reno had appointed during a period when the independent counsel law had lapsed. A three-judge panel appointed me pursuant to a 1994 law, which Mr. Clinton himself signed, that re-established the office of independent counsel. The sad and undisputed facts revealed by those investigations scarcely need retelling. Numerous criminal prosecutions and convictions dotted the legal landscape, including the conviction (and resignation) of a sitting governor of Arkansas; the convictions of Jim and Susan McDougal, business partners in Whitewater; and the guilty pleas of, among others, a former associate attorney general of the U.S. (and chief justice of the Arkansas Supreme Court).

Translation, there were real crimes, and Starr discovered them.

Six years later, the factual findings of our office's referral to the House of Representatives stand unrebutted. Those findings not only were accurate, they triggered profound concerns as to the basic integrity of witnesses, including the president himself, in the administration of justice. The result included an outgoing president's written recognition of his responsibility to our justice system, imposition of sanctions by a federal judge, and a suspension of his law license for an extended period.

Translation, Clinton lied, committed crimes and ultimately fessed up, even though he escaped criminal prosecution.

My Lies

As a private citizen, Kenneth Starr is now free to do something that he could not do as a special prosecutor, publicly rebut Bill Clinton's lies.

It was my task to complete the investigations begun by Bob Fiske, whom Ms. Reno had appointed during a period when the independent counsel law had lapsed. A three-judge panel appointed me pursuant to a 1994 law, which Mr. Clinton himself signed, that re-established the office of independent counsel. The sad and undisputed facts revealed by those investigations scarcely need retelling. Numerous criminal prosecutions and convictions dotted the legal landscape, including the conviction (and resignation) of a sitting governor of Arkansas; the convictions of Jim and Susan McDougal, business partners in Whitewater; and the guilty pleas of, among others, a former associate attorney general of the U.S. (and chief justice of the Arkansas Supreme Court).

Translation, there were real crimes, and Starr discovered them.

Six years later, the factual findings of our office's referral to the House of Representatives stand unrebutted. Those findings not only were accurate, they triggered profound concerns as to the basic integrity of witnesses, including the president himself, in the administration of justice. The result included an outgoing president's written recognition of his responsibility to our justice system, imposition of sanctions by a federal judge, and a suspension of his law license for an extended period.

Translation, Clinton lied, committed crimes and ultimately fessed up, even though he escaped criminal prosecution.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Kerry Attacks Bush On New Front

John Effing Kerry charged today that George W. Bush has allowed Iraq and Afghanistan to distract attention from the real danger facing the world, pissed off kangaroos.

"We have invested so much attention and resources into fighting terrorism that Bush has allowed the kangaroo threat to fester and burst onto th world." Kerry charged. "America hasn't been attacked in 3 years for crying out loud. Meanwhile, he has ignored the root causes of kangaroo unrest."

Monday, July 05, 2004

Do Liberal Have Any Class?

Let's put all the evidence on the table and the voters decide.

“The voters can judge whether the contents are pertinent to Ryan’s fitness for office. We think they are.”

Friday, July 02, 2004

The Mainsteam Media Fails

The mainstream media is still seething over the 1988 "Willie Horton" ad. But, they're mostly sanguine regarding Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 9-11."

The Willie Horton ad told only the truth. Fahrenheit 9-11 is a two hour pack of lies. Where's the outrage?

The Biggest Scandal Ever?

Where will the United Nations' Oil For Food Scandal rank in the annals of corruption?

A great deal depends upon how successful the United Nations' coverup will be.

Under intense pressure from Congress, the United Nations established its own "independent" commission of inquiry into the U.N.'s handling of the Oil-for-Food program, headed by former U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, South African judge Richard Goldstone, and Swiss lawyer Mark Pieth. The U.N. inquiry bears all the hallmarks of an elaborate paper tiger. The commission lacks subpoena power and cannot force the cooperation of U.N. member states. It has also been dogged by allegations of interference by U.N. officials, and serious doubts exist as to whether the inquiry will deliver substantial results.

Can we force the UN to come clean? Well, the UN relies upon us for the lion's share of its budget.

The Triumph Of Pornography

The Supreme Courst seems to place a higher value on pornography than on political free speech.

"Content-based prohibitions, enforced by severe criminal penalties, have the constant potential to be a repressive force in the lives and thoughts of a free people."

This applies to dirty pictures, but not to debate.


I will never ride in the Tour de France. In fact, I doubt that I will ever set foot in France. There are entirely too many Frenchmen over there for my taste. But, I do know how it feels to ride in the Tour de France.
Last Sunday, after circumstances defeated me twice, I finally completed a full Ironman race. And, as in the Tour, I got to finish in a narrow chute formed by rows of cheering fans. What a rush! The final 6 blocks of the race went right down Coeur D’Alene’s main downtown boulevard. A crush of excited fans narrowed the path to barely three or four feet, much as one sees near the finish of mountain top stages in France. It’s hard to imagine that the excitement attending the completion of an Ironman could be enhanced, but sharing that excitement with those cheering throngs elevated my experience by a quantum leap.
Some years ago, I set my sights on competing in an Ironman triathlon. Originally, I was mostly motivated to infuse my workouts with a little variety. Training for triathlons seemed just the ticket. And being the obsessive sort that I am, I decided that the Ironman would have to be the ultimate goal.
The Ironman is often called the most grueling one-day endurance event in sports. Beginning at 7:00 AM, aspiring Ironmen and women plunge into a lake for a 2.4 mile swim. Upon exiting the water, the athletes climb upon their bikes as quickly as possible (the clock is running all the time), and head out into a challenging, hilly, 112 mile bike course. Once the Ironman finishes with this bike, the real work starts. Again, with the clock running, the Ironman changes shoes, removes his helmet and charges out to run a full marathon. That’s 26.2 miles, the distance between the classical Greek cities of Marathon and Athens.
Two years ago, my Ironman dreams were blown away by a severe storm. Just as the race was about to get underway, winds in Provo, Utah, site of the ill-fated and short-lived Ironman Utah, gusted to over fifty miles per hour, raising 3 and 4 foot swells that killed one competitor and left the swim course unnavigable. The winds and waves threw swimmers ashore over more than a mile of lakeshore. By the time that the survivors were rescued and accounted for, there were not enough hours left in the day for a proper race and the course was shortened to fit within the available time.
I earned an Ironman medal and finisher’s tee shirt, but I never did feel that I had satisfied the criteria for being called an “Ironman.”
Last year, I was supremely well conditioned, but was defeated by luck as my bicycle broke down. Last year, whenever friends wished me “good luck” before the race, I responded somewhat ungraciously that luck would have nothing to do with it. My success would depend upon the years of work that I had invested in this endeavor. Either I was prepared, or I was not. It turned out that I was wrong. All my preparation went for naught as a series of mechanical malfunctions knocked me out of the race.
This year I graciously thanked well-wishers. And a harsher winter ensured I was not so well conditioned as the previous year, but I made sure that I had a perfectly prepared bike waiting for me in the transition area. It paid off.
Injuries had prevented me from working out either in the pool or on running trails for most of the previous 6 weeks, and I had not the slightest idea how long my knee would hold up during the race. Covering 140.6 miles in one day is an awful lot to ask of a gimpy knee.
The knee held. The bike performed flawlessly. All that was required for me to finish with a respectable time was an iron will. I had it. And all the pain I suffered was more than rewarded by the elation at the finish. And I was already planning my next Ironman race – Ironman Arizona, in 2006.
What drives the Ironman is usually incomprehensible to his friends and family.
The daughter of a friend of mine always cries when his race ends. She gets it.