Ungodly Politics

"Announcing your plans is a good way to hear god laugh." - Al Swearingen


Monday, September 30, 2002  

ABCNEWS.com : W. Coast Ports Stay Shut Until Deal

The deal being, the dock workers want increased safety. They are also simply asking that any jobs introduced due to new technology be union jobs.

Horrors! They're commies! Must stop, must stop!

Bush has already threatened to send in troops. He's made a couple of critical errors here, however.

First, dock workers are no longer simply strong backs and weak minds hauling cargo around. These guys are very well trained in some seriously difficult work, running huge cranes at top speed. No way Bush has 80,000 trained dock workers socked away in the National Guard somewhere.

The other error he's made is "misunderestimating" his opponents. These guys aren't the air traffic controllers. These guys are old school union, and there's likely to be bloodshed if scabs try to cross the line.

And I'm curious as to when the Teamsters or the east coasters are going to get involved? One Billion Dollars a Day. That's what this is costing us for now. Wait until both coasts are shut down.

Merry Christmas.

posted by lazarus | 01:31 | |


Saturday, September 28, 2002  

Agency disavows report on Iraq arms -- The Washington Times

The International Atomic Energy Agency says that a report cited by President Bush as evidence that Iraq in 1998 was "six months away" from developing a nuclear weapon does not exist.

"There's never been a report like that issued from this agency," Mark Gwozdecky, the IAEA's chief spokesman, said yesterday in a telephone interview from the agency's headquarters in Vienna, Austria.

"We've never put a time frame on how long it might take Iraq to construct a nuclear weapon in 1998," said the spokesman of the agency charged with assessing Iraq's nuclear capability for the United Nations.

In a Sept. 7 news conference with British Prime Minister Tony Blair, Mr. Bush said: "I would remind you that when the inspectors first went into Iraq and were denied — finally denied access (in 1998), a report came out of the Atomic — the IAEA that they were six months away from developing a weapon.


I've said it before, and I'll say it again. He's a lying lunatic. He lied, again.

posted by lazarus | 00:32 | |


Friday, September 27, 2002  

Ashcroft’s Baghdad Connection

Well, now. John, you planning any trips to Gitmo any time soon?

posted by lazarus | 08:20 | |


Tuesday, September 24, 2002  

Rapture Index

Fasten your seat belt, it's the end of the world.......

posted by lazarus | 17:53 | |
 

Yahoo! News - Agent Cited WTC Attack Ahead of 9/11

"A Minneapolis FBI ( news - web sites) supervisor said in a pre-Sept. 11 conversation with headquarters that he wanted to prevent suspicious student pilot Zacarias Moussaoui from flying a plane into the World Trade Center, a congressional investigator testified Tuesday. "

But according to Condi "Supertanker" Rice, we had no idea that anybody would even think of such a thing.

It's becoming clearer and clearer that impeachment of the President for dereliction of duty is called for.

posted by lazarus | 08:46 | |
 

BBC News Online | UK dossier on Iraq

And here it is. The "Smoking Gun". A few comments:

1. Under Saddam Hussein Iraq developed chemical and biological weapons, acquired missiles allowing it to attack neighbouring countries with these weapons and persistently tried to develop a nuclear bomb. Saddam has used chemical weapons, both against Iran and against his own people. Following the Gulf War, Iraq had to admit to all this. And in the ceasefire of 1991 Saddam agreed unconditionally to give up his weapons of mass destruction.

Not so much developed as had given to him, by the UK and the US. This like a pusher criticising users for possession, isn't it?

7. Prior to the Gulf War, Iraq had a well-developed ballistic missile industry.

Um, imported SCUDs from the former USSR? Right......

8. Iraq had made frequent use of a variety of chemical weapons during the Iran-Iraq War. Many of the casualties are still in Iranian hospitals suffering from the long-term effects of numerous types of cancer and lung diseases. In 1988 Saddam also used mustard and nerve agents against Iraqi Kurds at Halabja in northern Iraq (see box on p15). Estimates vary, but according to Human Rights Watch up to 5,000 people were killed.

9. Iraq used significant quantities of mustard, tabun and sarin during the war with Iran resulting in over 20,000 Iranian casualties.

A month after the attack on Halabja, Iraqi troops used over 100 tonnes of sarin against Iranian troops on the al-Fao peninsula. Over the next three months Iraqi troops used sarin and other nerve agents on Iranian troops causing extensive casualties.

10. From Iraqi declarations to the UN after the Gulf War we know that by 1991 Iraq had produced a variety of delivery means for chemical and biological agents including over 16,000 free-fall bombs and over 110,000 artillery rockets and shells.

Iraq also admitted to the UN Special Commission (UNSCOM) that it had 50 chemical and 25 biological warheads available for its ballistic missiles.


Once again, he was sold or given these weapons by the US and the UK, and trained in their use by a cabal of people including Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, and Colin Powell.

11. Iraq fired over 500 SCUD-type missiles at Iran during the Iran-Iraq War at both civilian and military targets, and 93 SCUD-type missiles during the Gulf War. The latter were targeted at Israel and Coalition forces stationed in the Gulf region.

That bastard had the gall to fire at us when we attacked him! How dare he?

This was achieved despite a continuous and sophisticated programme of harassment, obstruction, deception and denial (see Part 2). Because of this UNSCOM concluded by 1998 that it was unable to fulfil its mandate. The inspectors were withdrawn in December 1998.

Lie by implication. The inspectors were withdrawn so we could bomb Iraq, not because UNSCOM "was unable to fulfil its mandate."

The rest of the dossier is a Bush-like rant that "we have intelligence" that Iraq is doing bad things, without any details whatsoever.

posted by lazarus | 05:54 | |


Monday, September 23, 2002  

BBC NEWS | UK | Politics | Saddam must be stopped - Blair

[i]UK Prime Minister Tony Blair has told his cabinet that the policy of "containing" Saddam Hussein has failed and that the Iraqi dictator must be stopped. [/i]

Well, this brings to mind a couple of questions that nobody is answering because nobody is asking.

Mr Blair, How has the policy of containment failed? And what must he be stopped from doing? As far as I can tell, he hasn't actually done anything yet, has he?

posted by lazarus | 13:30 | |


Thursday, September 19, 2002  

I'll be on hiatus until Sunday or Monday, as I'll be doing some travelling. In the meantime, please check the links on the right, lots of good reading in there.

posted by lazarus | 02:51 | |


Wednesday, September 18, 2002  

Afghan minister says pipeline project will start next year.

No, this had nothing to do with a pipeline. This had nothing to do with it at all.

Where's Osama, anyway?

posted by lazarus | 22:37 | |
 

Mirror.co.uk - MANDELA SLAMS BUSH THE WORLD BULLY

A similar article to one I already blogged, but there's a lot more to this one, including some quotes from some other leaders in the world.

But the most disturbing part of this article is the very last paragraph.


The Security Council asked its current president, Bulgarian Stefan Tafrov, to arrange a council meeting with Blix as soon as possible. US and Britain said such a session could wait, but were outvoted.


Yup. You read that right. We're in no rush to actually have the UN do anything, despite all our rhetoric to the contrary.

I'll say it again: Bush is a madman.

posted by lazarus | 16:11 | |


Tuesday, September 17, 2002  

iafrica.com | news | sa news US is a bully - Mandela

Well, now. Good for Nelson Mandela. He speaks truth, and probably remembers a little vote Cheney made a few years back.


"What right has he (Bush) to come and say that that offer is not genuine. We must condemn that very strongly. That's why I criticise leaders for keeping quiet when one country wants to bully the whole world," an angry Mandela told reporters at his house in Johannesburg.

Mandela said he although he had received help from Bush and former US president Bill Clinton he would not remain silent when Washington made mistakes.

"I will speak out when they are wrong, and on this question of Iraq they're absolutely wrong," he said. "That is a matter for the United Nations."

posted by lazarus | 22:33 | |


Monday, September 16, 2002  

Text of White House Response to Iraq (washingtonpost.com)

"This is not a matter of inspections. It is about disarmament of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction and the Iraqi regime's compliance with all other Security Council resolutions."

"This will require a new, effective U.N. Security Council resolution that will actually deal with the threat Saddam Hussein poses to the Iraqi people, to the region, and to the world."

We must destroy them to save them. Where have we seen this before?

Apparently, he's referring to some extra requirements he made in his speech to the UN. In my opinion, if the UN caves to the demands of one madman, it will then be irrelevant.

And Bush is showing himself to be a madman. He's too insanely fixated on war to accept victory. We won. We got our guarantees. We got the inspectors. Let's move on from here.

posted by lazarus | 19:18 | |
 

Yahoo! News - Iraq Accepts Weapons Inspectors

Check. Your move, Bush. Mate in one.

posted by lazarus | 16:28 | |
 

Guardian Unlimited Observer | Special reports | For sale to the highest bidder: Britain's secret weapons labs

Words fail me. Read for yourself.

Sunday September 15, 2002
The Observer

Not even Tom Clancy could have dreamt it up. The government plans to sell a stake in its top secret defence laboratories - responsible for inventing the sort of hardware that would make 007's Q green with envy - to a shadowy American organisation that boasts ex-Presidents and Prime Ministers as special advisers and has invested millions of dollars for the bin Laden family and Saudi royalty.
This is not paperback fiction, however. It is the Government's latest plan for QinetiQ, the rebranded Defence Evaluation and Research Agency (Dera) that in recent years has developed a diverse portfolio of inventions, including a plastic tank that avoids radar, a new system for mapping the seabed, and technology that allows third-generation mobile phone masts to be installed in churches.

Having opted against floating the company on the stock market because of the global economic downturn, the government decided instead earlier this month to invite venture capital firms to take a stake in the business, which employs more than 9,000 people.

The deal is hugely controversial. The government's plans to privatise the defence laboratories drew fierce criticism when they were announced four years ago. Experts warned it was a way of allowing Ministers to distance themselves from allegations that Britain was underfunding such research.

Now, by opening up QinetiQ to outside interests, the government is accused of sacrificing the crown jewels of the UK defence industry because of the Treasury's addiction to public private partnerships at the expense of all other funding alternatives.

Few were surprised when the Carlyle Group emerged at the head of the stampede to acquire the QinetiQ stake, beating fierce competition from a reputed 40 firms. Carlyle is one of the biggest venture capital groups, a leviathan that commands respect and inspires awe in equal parts. Chaired by former US Defense Secretary Frank Carlucci, the group's tentacles spread far and wide.

John Major, George Bush Sr and his former Secretary of State, James Baker, are on its payroll. Arthur Levitt, former chairman of the US Securities and Exchange Commission, and ex-Bundesbank president Karl Otto Pohl are among its advisers. Besides the bin Laden family, which has disowned Osama, it has managed funds for Prince Alwaleed and the likes of George Soros, earning its investors spectacular returns by taking strategic stakes in everything from Socpresse, parent company of French newspaper Le Figaro, to a subsidiary of the Japanese supermarket giant Daiei.



posted by lazarus | 03:11 | |


Sunday, September 15, 2002  

From the Sunday Herald comes another frightening story:


A SECRET blueprint for US global domination reveals that President Bush and his cabinet were planning a premeditated attack on Iraq to secure 'regime change' even before he took power in January 2001.

The blueprint, uncovered by the Sunday Herald, for the creation of a 'global Pax Americana' was drawn up for Dick Cheney (now vice- president), Donald Rumsfeld (defence secretary), Paul Wolfowitz (Rumsfeld's deputy), George W Bush's younger brother Jeb and Lewis Libby (Cheney's chief of staff). The document, entitled Rebuilding America's Defences: Strategies, Forces And Resources For A New Century, was written in September 2000 by the neo-conservative think-tank Project for the New American Century (PNAC).



The PNAC report also:

- refers to key allies such as the UK as 'the most effective and efficient means of exercising American global leadership';

- describes peace-keeping missions as 'demanding American political leadership rather than that of the United Nations';

- reveals worries in the administration that Europe could rival the USA;

- says 'even should Saddam pass from the scene' bases in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait will remain permanently -- despite domestic opposition in the Gulf regimes to the stationing of US troops -- as 'Iran may well prove as large a threat to US interests as Iraq has';

- spotlights China for 'regime change' saying 'it is time to increase the presence of American forces in southeast Asia'. This, it says, may lead to 'American and allied power providing the spur to the process of democratisation in China';



So now we see what the plan really is. Pax Americana. I'd personally call it the Fourth Reich.


Tam Dalyell, the Labour MP, father of the House of Commons and one of the leading rebel voices against war with Iraq, said: 'This is garbage from right-wing think-tanks stuffed with chicken-hawks -- men who have never seen the horror of war but are in love with the idea of war. Men like Cheney, who were draft-dodgers in the Vietnam war.

'This is a blueprint for US world domination -- a new world order of their making. These are the thought processes of fantasist Americans who want to control the world. I am appalled that a British Labour Prime Minister should have got into bed with a crew which has this moral standing.'


And where are the Democrats willing to say the same thing?

posted by lazarus | 04:04 | |


Friday, September 13, 2002  

3 Groups Already Squabbling Over Oil-Flush North Iraq

And here we go again. Doesn't this sound like Afghanistan?

posted by lazarus | 12:22 | |


Thursday, September 12, 2002  

Kevin at Lean Left has a wonderful editorial up about the speech Bush recited to the UN. I agree with every point. Bush simply didn't make the case, to the UN or to the American people.

The most critical question to me is, why does he believe that Saddam's behaviour will suddenly change? He has yet to use WMDs on us, even when threatened in GW1. President Clinton, speaking on the Letterman show last night, summed it up nicely. The time Saddam would use WMDs is when his back is to the wall, about to be deposed. And what could stop him from distributing those WMDs to terrorrists at that point? No more fear of retribution, right?

posted by lazarus | 14:16 | |
 

Welcome to uComics Web Site featuring Ted Rall -- The Best Comic Site In The Universe!

Yes, the new Ted Rall. Go. Look at it now. If you're looking at this after the 12th of September, go back to the 12th of September, it's worth it.

posted by lazarus | 02:24 | |


Wednesday, September 11, 2002  

Sunday Herald


THE US and Britain sold Saddam Hussein the technology and materials Iraq needed to develop nuclear, chemical and biological wea pons of mass destruction.
Reports by the US Senate's committee on banking, housing and urban affairs -- which oversees American exports policy -- reveal that the US, under the successive administrations of Ronald Reagan and George Bush Snr, sold materials including anthrax, VX nerve gas, West Nile fever germs and botulism to Iraq right up until March 1992, as well as germs similar to tuberculosis and pneumonia. Other bacteria sold included brucella melitensis, which damages major organs, and clostridium perfringens, which causes gas gangrene.
Classified US Defence Dep-artment documents also seen by the Sunday Herald show that Britain sold Iraq the drug pralidoxine, an antidote to nerve gas, in March 1992, after the end of the Gulf war. Pralidoxine can be reverse engineered to create nerve gas.



Remember this as you here Tony Blair and George Bush and Dick Cheney talking about what a threat Saddam is. Remember it well.

posted by lazarus | 21:47 | |
 

BBC NEWS | Europe | Putin warns of 'self-defence' strikes

He's not warning us not to do it. He's warning the rest of the world that he can do it, too. Yeah, it's just Georgia. Just a sovereign nation.

Oh, and guess who else has troops in Georgia? Won't this be exciting?

Remember how, soon after 9/11, everybody jumped on Bush's "terrorist" rhetoric? Now, we get to see people using his "self defence" first strike justification, too.

Nice going, Bush. Nice to see you bringing peace to the world.

posted by lazarus | 19:38 | |
 

Yahoo! Living Tribute: Tile Not Found

A friend of mine submitted this tile. I saw it this morning. It was up less than 12 hours ago. Let me describe it for you.

It was a peace symbol. With the words, "Bush Knew". That was it.

Apparently, the words they put in its place are the Orwellian future we have all entered.


Yahoo! is committed to a spirit of tolerance and hope that reflects the World Wide Web at its best and the many voices of its citizens.

We are doing our best to ensure that all tiles respect that spirit. If we are notified of potential abuse we reserve the right to remove inappropriate messages.

If you feel that this tile was removed in error, we sincerely apologize.



Apparently, a peace symbol and an expression that Bush might not be the bestest president ever is not in the "spirit of tolerance and hope that reflects the World Wide Web at its best and the many voices of its citizens."

Yahoo meets Orwell. Nice. I understand that this is not true censorship, as censorship can only be practised by a government. But it is indeed an ironic thing to do on this day, with those words.

Shame, Yahoo. Shame.

posted by lazarus | 18:09 | |
 

Eschaton has this wonderful find from the National Review Online. Nice of you NRO guys to join the party. We've known that the bin Ladens were scurried out of the country for some time, though.

Maybe the NRO should have its reporters simply dig around the liberal blogosphere for a while, to see what else is going on that they missed. Little things like stolen elections, lying Presidents, Presidents and VPs who were involved in criminal stock dealings.......

posted by lazarus | 17:04 | |
 

For 9/11, I'd like to address all the people who scream that things need to be done, that we need to go war, that we need to give up certain freedoms, or else "the terrorists will win."

I'd like them to think about what that means. And possibly explain to me what a nation in which the terrorists have won would look like. Obviously, they're not going to invade and put an Islamic regime in place. And we're not allowed to investigate what their goals or motives are, or we're being sympathetic to them. No, we have to just assume they "hate our freedom", even though we're not the sole bastion of freedom in the world.

So let's think about that on this day of remembrance. What would the United States look like if the terrorists won?

posted by lazarus | 03:29 | |


Tuesday, September 10, 2002  

The Scotsman - Top Stories - Enron trap threatens to snare Blair

Well, now, isn't this interesting. Do we now have a clue to explain why Blair has been such a lapdog to Bush?


TONY Blair was under intense pressure last night to come clean about his close links with the collapsed US company Enron amid growing allegations that the multi-national had directly influenced the government’s energy policy.

A besieged Downing Street was struggling to contain the scandal that has rocked the Bush administration and is now threatening to engulf the government amid evidence Mr Blair had intervened to protect the interests of the US-owned energy corporation.
(snip)
But The Scotsman has learned the government waived its own moratorium on gas-fired power stations on 10 July 1999, to give Enron special exemption to build a combined heat and power plant (CHP) on Teesside.

Coincidentally, Stephen Byers, the then Trade and Industry Secretary, had met Enron representatives just a few days earlier on 26 May.
(snip)
David Davis, the Tory Party chairman, said Mr Blair had to make clear what role he played in the decision to abandon the ban on gas-fired stations.

Describing it as a very murky business, he said: "The question remains whether Mr Blair was aware of the meetings between his ministers and Enron executives and whether he intervened to secure a change of policy."

He added: "This looks like a very murky business in which a big American corporation has admitted giving money to Labour in return for access to ministers. Subsequently those ministers made important changes to energy policy."


Welcome to the club, sir. Welcome to the club.

posted by lazarus | 22:37 | |
 

Reuters AlertNet - UN inspector: No aerial evidence of new Iraqi arms


UNITED NATIONS, Sept 10 (Reuters) - The chief U.N. arms inspector said on Tuesday he had no evidence from aerial photos that Iraq was attempting to rebuild its weapons of mass destruction but no one could be sure until his teams were back on the ground.

Hans Blix, executive chairman of the U.N. Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission, also told reporters he would hold no discussions with Iraq on anything but practical arrangements for how the inspectors would operate.

Speaking after a U.N. Security Council meeting on his latest report, Blix told reporters that satellite photos showed Iraq had carried out rebuilding at sites that may have been bombed by American and British planes in December 1998.

"But this is not the same as saying there are weapons of mass destruction," Blix said. "If I had solid evidence that Iraq retained weapons of mass destruction or were constructing such weapons I would take it to the Security Council."


More evidence that Bush and Blair lied to us to get our sons and daughters killed in Iraq.

Also, isn't this pretty much what Ritter said that's getting him called a traitor all over the rightwingnut side of the web?

posted by lazarus | 13:56 | |


Monday, September 09, 2002  

Reuters has an fun article up, headlined U.S. Intercepts Al Qaeda-Bound Cell Phones .

Two reports, actually, as one claims it's 250 phones, one says 1,000. Doesn't matter.

What matters is the questions raised by this. Do we now know where al Qaeda is, then?

If we don't, but knew these phones were going to them, why didn't we just follow the phones and get the bad guys? Is our War On Terra being run by Roscoe P. Coltraine? Could we be any more incompetent?

More and more, the tin-foil hat is feeling nice and comfy.

posted by lazarus | 22:00 | |
 

I'd like to take a moment to thank some folks. They've really helped boost my traffic, and, being a new blog, that is very very helpful. They're also great bloggers in their own right.


Kevin over at Lean Left is the one that got me started, so of course he's first up. Jeanne over at Body and Soul has also been a huge help. Scott at The Gamer's Nook has some wonderful stuff, and the fact that he also does games and film offers a nice break from the politics he also does quite well.

I've recently found, thanks to Jeanne, skippy the bush kangaroo, a good blog I'm starting to seriously enjoy. And I've been mentioned at several blogs recently, including The One True b!x and Ted Barlow.

And I'm sure I missed a lot of them, and hope any that I did miss will let me know.






posted by lazarus | 21:49 | |
 

No link necessary, as this little tidbit is being reported everywhere.

Cheney and Bush have new secret irrefutable evidence that Hussein is rebuilding his weapons program. I happen to have figured out what it must be.

Cheney's got the receipt from when he sold the stuff to Saddam. That's it.

posted by lazarus | 15:05 | |


Sunday, September 08, 2002  

Guardian Unlimited has an interesting editorial concerning Bush's drinking habits, among other things. Which raises the point, what exactly would happen if it became too evident for denial that he is drinking to excess?

posted by lazarus | 18:33 | |
 

Yahoo! News - Saddam's Alleged Mistress Says He Met Bin Laden

Does anybody out there actually believe this one? Isn't this a sign of desparation?

Let's run it down.

Bush1 lied about satellite imagery to make Saudi Arabia believe Iraq was about to invade them.

Bush 2 lied about the likelihood of Iraq developing nukes, twice in one press conference.

Bush 1 had the Kuwaiti ambassador's daughter, who hadn't been to Kuwait in some time, lie to congress about Iraqis taking babies out of incubators and killing them.

Bush 2 now has this "mistress" appear to give him the magical link to bin Laden, forgetting that bin Laden actually hates Saddam Hussein for running a secular government.

So, what lies do we get next? And how will we ever keep track of them all?

Honour and integrity. Yup.

posted by lazarus | 16:04 | |
 

heraldtribune.com: Southwest Florida's Information Leader

Ladies and Gentlemen, it's this year's recipient of the Annual Republican "Ho We Used and Tossed Aside" Award.


Congress, District 13 In the Republican primary, we make no
recommendation

Four times the Herald-Tribune has recommended Katherine Harris in an election for public office. The recommendations were made with reservations, sometimes with trepidation, but always in the hope that experience would help Harris harness her extraordinary energy, bring clarity to her views and teach her to avoid those embarrassing blunders.
That hope has vanished.
Mistakes and misjudgments, which continued right through Harris' confounding resignation as secretary of state, can no longer be dismissed as the products of inexperience. Mishaps aren't the exception but the expectation.

Likewise, the startling lack of clarity when Harris discusses public policies and her political vision -- without the aid of scripts or handlers -- can no longer be excused as a byproduct of a novice's uncontained enthusiasm. Desultory responses to questions are the standard, regardless of the stage of her career or the importance of the office sought.

(snip)

The mistakes might be mitigated if Harris had emerged from eight years in office with a well-defined political vision she could articulate. Instead, "I didn't have a platform when I started running" for Congress, she told us.

A platform has been developed but it falls short, in our view, of addressing the need for a simple, comprehensive prescription- drug benefit for senior citizens and overstates the need to eliminate the estate tax paid by a small number of wealthy Americans. The decision to kick off her campaign with U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay, whose views on the environment and social issues are antithetical to those of most Republicans in District 13, is another reason to question the path Harris would follow, if elected.

The persistence of these concerns is a disappointment, and contributes to the dilemma in the Republican primary for U.S. House of Representatives, District 13.

posted by lazarus | 00:44 | |


Saturday, September 07, 2002  

Freedom Chained In Pittsburgh :: War, Politics, Literature ::

From the front lines of Bush, Inc.'s war on freedom. Got this from skippy the bush kangaroo.

posted by lazarus | 23:18 | |
 

Study: 1.5 Million Unemployed Will Exhaust Jobless Benefits

In September. Yeah, this is looking good, Shrubbie. First you pooch it on foreign policy, caught lying trying to bolster a bad case, now the unemployed are losing the only thing keeping them from being homeless.

From the report:

Major reasons that so many unemployed workers are exhausting
benefits this year are found in the design of the measure passed in
March. First, it provided too few weeks of extended benefits,
especially in comparison to federal action in the last recession.
The measure also included a flawed formula for determining whether
a state is in the "high unemployment" category. The formula fails
to count as unemployed those workers who exhaust their regular
unemployment benefits (that is, their initial 26 weeks of
state-financed benefits) and remain out of work. Thus, the longer
that unemployment remains elevated -- and the greater the number of
workers who have been jobless for more than six months -- the less
likely a state is to count as having "high unemployment."

The state-by-state data in the report show that though July of
this year, the states with the largest numbers of exhaustees were
New York (111,000), Texas (78,000) and Florida (62,000). The report
notes that, aside from providing crucial support to families in
financial duress, unemployment benefits are highly effective as
economic stimulus, and have the benefit of automatically shrinking
as the employment picture improves. It recommends prompt federal
action to assist those who have exhausted their federal benefits.


Gosh, it's because of something that happened on Bush's watch. Now let's all watch them try to figure out how to blame Clinton for this one. Should be fun.

posted by lazarus | 22:07 | |
 

Just to make sure nobody misunderstands, I want to repeat something critical concerning my last post.


HE LIED, HE LIED, HE LIED, HE LIED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Do not allow this one to slip, people! He lied to justify his war with Iraq, his lies have put our soldiers in harm's way.

Tell everyone, loudly and often, until it's a noise he can't avoid, despite his First Amendment Zones. This is our campaign slogan. Do you want to elect someone who will support a liar who wants to have our soldiers die to support his lies??

posted by lazarus | 20:54 | |
 

White House: Bush misstated report on Iraq

Imagine that. Misstated. Or could that be, LIED? Is this yet another in an endless series of examples of how he's bringing honour and integrity back to the White House? Lying to further his own domestic agenda?

So, we have two Presidents. One lied to avoid telling the truth about a strictly personal matter that should have been nobody's business outside his family. The other routinely, and now admittedly, lies to further an agenda of war and destruction in a vain effort to grab more power and make more money for himself and his cronies.

Clinton's lie could possibly have hurt his wife.

Bush's lie could cause the deaths of millions, including our soldiers.

posted by lazarus | 20:44 | |
 

news.telegraph.co.uk - US sends troops to Iran border as focus shifts in al-Qa'eda hunt

Hey everybody, I have an idea! Let's just declare war on the world! It'll be easy to figure out who the enemy is, then, right? Right?

Maybe the UN can help us.........

posted by lazarus | 19:27 | |
 

Body and Soul has some wonderful commentary on a Salon piece about alternative responses to 9/11. Both her comments and the Salon piece are worth reading.

posted by lazarus | 16:35 | |


Friday, September 06, 2002  

Reporter-News Online: Texas News -- Student agrees to hide Wiccan symbol, is readmitted to classes

Yes, that wonderful Christian spirit has reared its ugly head again. The question here is, do the Christians have to hide their crosses?

posted by lazarus | 12:57 | |
 

A quick word about LeanLeft, the first of my links on the right. It's a good friend of mine, Kevin, who got me started on all this blogging. Anyone who's tried to hit that link the last couple of days has gotten a 401 message. I finally got ahold of him, turns out his ISP is down and down hard, including phones. No idea what's going on, but he's hoping to be back up soon. Just keep checking, it's worth it.

posted by lazarus | 11:44 | |
 

An article in The California Patriot Online makes some rather disparaging comments about UC Berkeley's upcoming 9/11 remembrance. Rather than get into a long dissection of exactly how wrong this nonsense is, I'll let UCB take care of it on their own.

posted by lazarus | 03:35 | |
 

G.E. Expenses for Ex-Chief Cited in Divorce Papers

Some excerpts:

General Electric has reported that Mr. Welch's total compensation, including bonus and salary, was $16.7 million in 2000, his last full year at the company before his retirement last September. It has also said that he will remain a consultant to the company on a retainer of $86,000 a year and will continue to have access to G.E. services and facilities.

Along with access to corporate aircraft, mentioned previously in company footnotes, the documents filed by his wife, Jane, describe his use of a Manhattan apartment owned by G.E., floor-level seats to the New York Knicks, courtside seats at the U.S. Open, satellite TV at his four homes and all the costs associated with the New York apartment, from wine and food to laundry, toiletries and newspapers. The privileges, down to certain dining bills at the restaurant Jean Georges in the Manhattan apartment building where he lives, have continued even in retirement, the court papers indicate, without placing a value on them.

According to the court papers, the subsidized benefits include a car and driver for the Welches, and the communications and computer equipment at the Manhattan apartment and at their homes in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Florida. G.E. pays for security personnel when the Welches travel abroad.

Mrs. Welch states that G.E. was paying for V.I.P seating at Wimbledon, a box at the Metropolitan Opera, a box at Red Sox games, a box at Yankee games, four country club fees, security services in all four homes and limousine services while traveling. Because of his relationship with G.E., Mr. Welch and his wife also got discounts on diamonds and jewelry settings.

Gary Sheffer, a General Electric spokesman, pointed last night to Mr. Welch's consulting agreement with G.E., which pays him at least $86,535 annually for his first 30 days of work, with a payment of $17,307 for every additional day.


Every day I marvel that there hasn't been a revolution in this country.

posted by lazarus | 02:17 | |


Thursday, September 05, 2002  

A strange Google search string that brought hits to my page:

registered democrat list martial law

Should I be paranoid or happy?

posted by lazarus | 17:06 | |
 

Bush dismisses Iraq inspection offer and also makes a rather interesting comment.

In his first public response since the Iraqi offer on Friday, Mr Bush said he owed it to the future of civilisation not to allow the world's worst leaders to develop the world's worst weapons.


If these are the world's worst weapons, why do we have more of them than anyone else?

posted by lazarus | 16:39 | |
 

In a thread on Democratic Underground, a friend has this wonderful comment, which I'm posting in full here because of its clarity and eloquence:

I think this is the way they really think.

Some members of this Bush administration think those men and women died for them. Or was that for "us?" No, I know for certain they didn't die for me. Unlike this administration and its friends, I didn't gain anything by it. We didn't gain anything as a nation, we lost something. These weren't patriots, they were victims. The weren't thinking about liberty and fraternity, they were thinking about donuts.

If I could send myself back a year, I'd do my best to stop them from going, unknowing, to a war they'd never heard of, for a cause they didn't choose. I wouldn't ask them to sacrifice themselves to something which has never done anyone any good. They shouldn't have had to do that, and, really, they didn't. They didn't give themselves for our right to live as free people, or so that we could live a better life. Those men and women didn't sacrifice anything at all, they just died. They just died, and some gluttonous and indiscriminate gods have claimed the sacrifice for themselves.

But it's true that some did die for a cause, though not for some distant and fanciful ideal like "patriotism." They died trying to save lives; and so they were heroes, not patriots, and I think we do their memory a favor by the distinction.

There were nearly three thousand reasons, heroic and otherwise, that people died on that day. None of them had anything to do with a reason so nebulous as "patriotism." And they didn't die to be used as a goad to herd the american people into new and suspicious territory, didn't die so cynical lies could be spun in their names. They just died. They lost everything they ever had and ever will have, and we lost them too. We lost nearly three thousand friends, neighbors, and family members that day, and now their memories are being exchanged, like cheap currency, to buy our allegiance to causes which were not their own.

enki23

posted by lazarus | 13:26 | |
 

"Go massive," the notes quote him as saying. "Sweep it all up. Things related and not."

This from a CBS story yesterday, which I missed since I was crossing the country back to San Diego.

From the article:

CBS News has learned that barely five hours after American Airlines Flight 77 plowed into the Pentagon, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld was telling his aides to come up with plans for striking Iraq — even though there was no evidence linking Saddam Hussein to the attacks.


In other words, these bastards had been looking for an excuse, and finally got one.

posted by lazarus | 13:01 | |
 

This just in from uggabugga by way of Eschaton.

Some very funny graphics, and one scary sentence:

The second is to persuade Congress to vote for a resolution that gives the president as free a hand as possible — and not necessarily just with Iraq.

posted by lazarus | 12:52 | |


Wednesday, September 04, 2002  

Guardian Unlimited | Special reports | Stella Rimington: 'Terrorism did not begin on September 11'

A brilliant editorial by a British intelligence specialist. Especially the folowing quote:

We in the UK hold certain freedoms sacred - freedom of speech, freedom of movement, freedom of religious belief, freedom from intrusion into our private lives. Understandably, unless faced with clear evidence of a present danger, British governments of whatever political colour will lean towards providing maximum civil liberty. To behave differently is to let terrorism win its war against democracy before the first shot is fired.

The same should hold true in America. But it's changing rapidly.

The conclusion rings true as well, and is a subtle and pointed jab at George "smoke 'em out" Bush.

Finally, the most effective way of disrupting terrorists would be to deny them the publicity they crave. That can never be. But in their public response politicians should use words of scorn, rather than the rhetoric of revenge. All rhetoric plays into the hands of terrorists but talk of revenge breeds yet more hatred in a never-ending cycle. When a terrorist attack succeeds, we must try not to allow our reaction to give the terrorists even greater satisfaction than they get from the death and destruction they cause.

A shame the Bush boy doesn't have the maturity to see this.

posted by lazarus | 03:10 | |
 

Anchorage Daily News | FBI says inquiry into July 4 shooting a 'terrorism investigation'

Yeah, this is good.

Basically, the Bush, Inc., misadministration has decided to rewrite the Constitution all on its own now.

FBI agents had refused to describe the attack as terror because its legal definition of terrorism was work of "subnational groups or clandestine agents." No evidence has been found to link Hadayet with one.

Because of the attack, however, the Bush administration reconsidered the definition, and President Bush's domestic security plan now says criminal acts can qualify as terror without participation of a group. "Terrorism is not so much a system of belief ... as it is a strategy and a tactic - a means of attack," the plan says.


That's right, boys and girls, a means of attack. A strategy. A tactic. Note how subjective the definition has suddenly become?

Now they can basically define any crime as "terrorism-related" and off to Gitmo with you. Welcome to the 4th Reich.

posted by lazarus | 02:49 | |


Tuesday, September 03, 2002  

The SF Bay Guardian has this up from last week. It's their list of the top 10 most censoried news stories of 2001.

Wouldn't it be nice to have a free media that covers real news? Maybe we should start calling in to news shows and asking about these.

posted by lazarus | 19:49 | |


Monday, September 02, 2002  

ColonialMint - Free $2001 President Bush Bill

Quite possibly the most offensive thing I have seen this year. Words fail me.

posted by lazarus | 19:45 | |
 

The Top Ten Conservative Idiots are up over at the good old Democratic Underground. Enjoy.

posted by lazarus | 00:30 | |


Sunday, September 01, 2002  

Mr. Bush, as you think about invading Iraq, please consider this:

But if the cause be not good the king himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopped off in battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all 'We died at such a place;' some swearing, some crying for a surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left. I am afeard there are few die well that die in a battle; for how can they charitably dispose of any thing, when blood is their argument? Now, if these men do not die well, it will be a black matter for the king that led them to it; whom to disobey were against all proportion of subjection.

King Henry V, Act 4 sc. 1
Wm Shakespeare

posted by lazarus | 01:42 | |
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