Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Year to all

Motherdear: You must be joking. But thank you just the same. Good to hear from you.

I must say that the end of 2005 has left me more or less speechless. What more can one say about the runaway criminality of the Bush/Cheney administration, the rampant corruption in our current political system, the unspeakable horrors of Bush's totally unnecessary and immoral "war" in Iraq, the suffering of the victims of Katrina apparently now more or less abandoned by the administration, the secrecy and constant stonewalling and lies of Bush/Cheney and their cronies, the very near fascist takeover of the United States, and the shame of the current administration in the eyes of the entire world? Justin Raimondo has said that 2006 will be a year of revelations. I hope so. But I sincerely hope we can go a lot further than mere revelations. How about some real jail time? Some justice?

When I was a boy my father (may he rest in peace) never received anything for Christmas other than Lucky Strike cigarettes and neckties. Now that I am old and no longer either smoke or wear neckties all I receive are socks and books. One of the books I received (that I asked for) which I have now read is a biography of Stepin Fetchit (Lincoln Perry) by Mel Watkins. Most of you probably don't even remember Stepin Fetchit. I only remember him as a minor character actor who portrayed "the laziest man in the world." He was, of course, a shiftless, lazy "darky" who bumbled and created a notorious black stereotype. He was also, I learned, an accomplished dancer. As his career began in silent pictures and then continued on for a time with "talkies" I confess I did not see much of them or him. I was not aware, for example, that he was in fact a genuine "star" right up there with W.C.Fields and Charlie Chaplin. He was for a time the highest paid black performer in the U.S. (no doubt the world), had a huge following, owned a fleet of expensive cars, thousand dollar suits, and promoted himself shamelessly. He was a good friend of Jack Johnson and later of Muhammed Ali. Of course as the civil rights movement began to develop and naturally took an extremely dim view of his characterization of blacks his star faded. He kind of faded away and died broke. Watkins, who did not have a lot of information to work from, has done a very credible job. If you have any interest in the early years of Hollywood, and especially of the treatment of black entertainers at that time, I think you would enjoy this book.

Let us all look forward to a much better year. So Happy New Year to everyone. Be of good cheer and hope for the best.

Friday, December 30, 2005


According to a Harris poll reported in the Wall Street Journal, 22% of Americas still believe that Sadam Hussein helped plan 9/11. Twenty six percent still believe there were WMD's at the time we attacked Iraq. Twenty four percent believe that at least some of the hijackers were Iraqis. Actually, this is a great improvement from a few months ago when these percentages would have been much higher. But doesn't it make you wonder where these people have been all these months? They not only don't connect to the web, they apparently don't connect to anything anywhere. What I find even more disturbing, however, is the fact that some 40 to 41% of the public still supports Bush/Cheney. These supporters must be the hardcore "base" of the Republican party. Now, most of these people must know better. They must know what the charges against Bush/Cheney are, they must know there are increasing calls for impeachment, they must know that many of us believe Bush/Cheney have blatantly acted illegally, and so on. But still they support them. The only thing I can conclude from this dismal situation is that Republicans are proud of their war criminals and are willing to support them no matter what the facts. For them loyalty to country is irrelevant, loyalty to party, no matter what, is important. Such is the siren song of power and greed.

As I said previously, I hate this time of year. One of the things I hate the most is that virtually all television programs think they have to review the past year. Weren't the disasters of the past year bad enough the first time? Why do we have to relive them all? Who wants to wallow around further in the disaster of Katrina, the obscenity of Falluja, the sickness of Schiavo, the tsunami? It's not that I think these events were unimportant, it's because they were so terribly important that I don't need further reminders of how terrible they were. I remember them. And I won't forget them. And what about the things that are not reviewed, that have seemingly completely disappeared from our collective memories? What, for example, happened to Sibel Edmonds? Gannon/Guckert? Posada? All of the things that were simply stonewalled until they have been pretty much forgotten. This is one of the major strategies of the Bush/Cheney administration - just stonewall, stonewall, refuse to turn over anything, obfuscate, delay, lie, invoke national security, etc., etc. until everyone just gives up and forgets. Will this ever catch up with them? Apparently not if the Democrats have anything to do with it. They let them pull off this dishonest business time after time. Probably because they know they might be complicit in it.

Is it not interesting that Chalabi who received less than one percent of the vote in the recent Iraqi elections has been put in charge of the Iraqi oil fields? I guess the Iraqis must have done that because they felt sorry for him?

Justin Raimondo thinks that 2006 is going to be the year of revelations, because, of course, there are finally going to be trials where evidence will be presented and the full extent of Republican criminality will be exposed. I sincerely hope he is right but I'm not going to believe it until I see it. Just remember, Republicans control virtually everything. I wouldn't be surprised to see them run Ken Lay for president (after he wins his "Dumb CEO" defense). After all, he couldn't possibly be any dumber than what we have now.

"Capitalism turns men into economic cannibals, and having done so, mistakes economic cannibalism for human nature."
Edward Hyam

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Happy Christmas/Holidays/New Year - Bah, Humbug

I truly dislike this time of year. No, I'm not a Scrooge or a humbug or a cheap guy who just doesn't want to spend money. It's just that nothing happens for a period of two to three weeks. In the University context the whole system might as well just shut down completely from about 10 December until January 5th. There is nothing but shopping, parties, absences, parties, shopping, more shopping, and so on. It is not quite so bad in ordinary society but it is certainly bad enough. I don't care if they call it Christmas, Holidays, Hannukah, or whatever, it is still the same dreary period of inactivity (other than shopping). And the music! How many times are we supposed to listen to the same Christmas Carols over and over again. And the modern Christmas music is so insipid it offers no relief whatsoever (Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, I saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus, even Jingle Bells pales after the ten thousanth repetition). I like Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. But that's enough. I'm willing to take the first day of the year off but that is absolutely enough. More importantly, even though there are monumental political problems that desperately need attention, these are simply ignored while everyone indulges themselves in this holiday madness. I don't care if Mommy is Kissing Santa Claus or the night is silent or holy, I want to know what is happening in Iraq and Korea and Taiwan and Bolivia and Venezuela and Africa and even the Arctic Circle. Nature doesn't stop for the holidays, does it? The world, politically and physically is busily coming apart and we are concerned with killing trees and slopping down mulled wines and egg nog (ugh). So I do say, passionately, Bah, Humbug.

If you watched Democracy Now today you will have heard all about the sweetheart deals the big Corporations have been working out with the Federal Government. If this doesn't make you sick there is something wrong with you. And, of course, this is our biggest problem at this moment in our history - we are being controlled by and subservient to a relatively small number of huge Corporations that effectively control not only the U.S. but the world. They don't even pay any taxes to speak of! It takes us right back to the days of the railroad and mining and timber "Robber Barons." People had to take to the streets and demand justice. This may happen again, especially if the present administration doesn't finally get defeated. But with Democrats and Republicans both in the same conspiracy to maintain the present status quo the future looks bleak. If it's true that you get the government you deserve we're in big trouble. When do we get to see the next episode of Lost?

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Does anyone even care anymore?

Bush/Cheney, having been caught red-handed breaking the law and violating the Constitution, and having no reasonable excuse other than a blatant power grab, have had to lay down the gauntlet. In the simplest terms possible, they are claiming that the President has unlimited, unchecked, dictatorial powers during wartime. He is above the laws and, indeed, according to them, he IS the law. This would seem to ignore the obvious fact that we are not truly at "war." Congress never declared war on Iraq. In fact, the "war" on Iraq is no more legitimate than the "war on poverty," or the "war on drugs." He has for an argument the fact that his legal advisors, Gonzales, and Yoo, have told him so. But as both of them are obvious toadies willing to tell him anything he wants to hear this will probably not wash when it comes right down to it. I am no lawyer, and not even a student of the Constitution, but I know there is nowhere in American law or the Constitution anything that gives the President dictatorial powers anytime at all, including at times of war (which we are not in at the moment in any case). This is a claim that is absurd on the face of it.

There is no doubt whatsoever in my mind that this is true. The crucial question, however, has to do with whether anyone cares enough anymore to do anything about it. It doesn't seem to me that much is likely to happen. Democrats may complain (but who listens to them anymore), a few Republicans may pretend not to like it (but probably won't do anything about it), and the American Public will simply go back to Lost (a good description of where most of them are - lost in a sea of television nonsense and credit card debt). I hope I am wrong about this as it is a matter of absolutely monumental significance to the American political system.

There is a piece on Buzzflash today discussing a program where Russert is interviewing Brokaw and Koppel. I must say they come across about as intelligent as your normal fourth grader. Among other things they claim that Clinton would have gone to "war" just as Bush did if he had been President at 9/11. Does anyone believe that Clinton would have attacked and invaded Iraq because the problem was Osama bin Laden? I find the claim so ridiculous as to not be worthy of comment. Clinton may have had his problems, and he may have done things he should not have, and he may have even been overly militaristic, but he was/is not stupid like our present so-called Commander-in-Chief who might have qualified as a dogcatcher somewhere in Texas. I swear most of our "hot-shot" television anchors and reporters are nothing but yes-persons who are willing to just parrot back anything they are told by this criminal administration. They are just as responsible for this obscene, disgusting, illegal, immoral, unnecessary "war" as Bush/Cheney/Rice/Rumsfeld and the rest of the neocons.

Will justice be done in 2006? Don't count on it but do pray for it.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Worse by the day

Watch 'n Wait: I was wrong. The Seattle underground was not the result of an earthquake. It was basically the result of a fire. In 1889 a huge fire destroyed most of Seattle. They wanted to rebuild. But Pioneer Square was an area where there was a small island and water (a kind of wetland, I guess). So they decided to build 8 or more feet higher on fill. But they were so impatient they decided to build first and fill second. So most of the buildings sunk their first floor into the ground which created the underground.

Portland was different. They apparently had buildings whose basements were connected by tunnels. These were used by white slavers and others who shanghaied sailors. I guess they must have been built deliberately for these purposes.

New York underground is a result of more normal features, like the subway system, the sewers, wiring, and etc. I don't really know much about any of this but all you need to do is google Seattle underground, Portland underground, New York underground and etc. There is a ton of information on New York underground.

In the Seattle Post Intelligencer there was an article by Stewart M. Powell that suggests why Bush went the route of warrantless spying. In 2003 and 2004 the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court refused on 173 occasions to give Bush the warrants he requested. This was far more rejections than those of the previous three or four Presidents combined. Obviously the rejections were because Bush could not demonstrate "probable cause." In other words, the Secret Court simply refused to rubber stamp his requests so he simply went ahead without their approval. He clearly broke the law big time. I'm not so sure the Republicans will be able to just sit this one out. But I don't know, they seem to be proud enough of their war criminals to keep on supporting them. Unless something very strange happens I think this will be the end of the Republican Party for years to come. At least the very conservative Barrons has apparently figured this out.

John McCain, who I am beginning to believe might be somewhat demented, has suggested that when it comes to Intelligent Design v.s. Evolution "the students should be allowed to decide." Actually, I don't think he is demented. I think he wants the nomination so bad he is willing to do and say anything. Would you want a president who has been filmed actually hugging Bush? Personally, I hope the Republicans will nominate Santorum.

Somewhere I saw a report that bombings in Iraq have increased fivefold in recent weeks. Can anyone explain to me why continuing to bomb Iraqis, especially innocent civilians, at this point in time, is in any way either justified or productive? What is the point? What might be gained by this apparent insanity? Are they bombing Iraq in order to save it (from the horrible Iranians)? I'm sorry to be so dense, but I just don't get it. The "war" is over. The Iranians won. Our Army has been pretty much decimated, our "advanced" weapons of "shock and awe" pretty much useless. We are going to have to withdraw with the neocons "pipe" dreams of empire down the tube. Why do we have to be such poor losers? The enormity of their crimes is such that I doubt the damage Bush/Cheney and the neocons have done can be overcome even in a century.

Monday, December 26, 2005

The Gathering Storm?

Watch 'n Wait: Good question indeed. I don't know the answer but I think in the Seattle case it may have to do with earthquakes. I'm going to look into it.

I always loved this Churchill title. I think (and hope) it may be applicable to the present circumstances. I cannot imagine that after the first of the year there will not be massive "explosions" of one kind and another.

We already know and anticipate some form of action with respect to DeLay, Abramhof, Frist, Rove, Libby, perhaps Cheney, and who know what all else. Republicans may try to downplay Bush's illegal wiretaps but I don't think they will escape this time. And there is always the Iraqi situation which will almost certainly dissolve into a civil war (if, indeed, it is not already that). The Iraqis will want us to leave but Bush/Cheney will not want to give up all that control of oil and the Middle East - should be truly interesting.

Now we have Governor Bill Richardson claiming that his phone may have been tapped while he was discussing things with the Koreans (in the U.S., not on international phone lines) and the conversations turned over to Bolton. Now that's interesting!

We also now have Representative John Lewis saying that he will support impeachment proceedings if they arise. And there is more and more mention of impeachment these days, even in the MSM. I don't think impeachment in this case is possible or even practical. However, it could lead to resignations. If Bush/Cheney had any sense of decency or interest in the welfare of the U.S. they would resign now. But of course they have no sense of decency and could care less about the U.S.

At the same time they claim to being outlawing torture (ha ha) they are also doing away with habeas corpus. This is truly vile. In fact probably the most horrible development in the history of the U.S. And of course it is really designed to protect the torurers not the tortured. I cannot believe that our Congresspersons and Senators will allow this. God help us if they do.

Powell has said there is nothing wrong with Bush's warrantless spying, but why didn't he get the warrants. Am I missing something? Isn't that what the controversy is all about? As far as I know no one is questioning his right to spy, provided he gets the warrants. But he didn't. Just couldn't be bothered with the paperwork. It strikes me that we have pushed insanity in government about as far as it can go. Look forward to a happy 2006 when some minimal form of justice might actually reappear.

And oh yes, there is the Alito matter. From what I have seen so far there is no way on earth he should be appointed to the Supreme Court. But that doesn't mean he won't be, such is the level of idiocy that exists in our current administration. And given that idiocy, plus all of the developing scandals, plus Alito, plus Iraq, plus the coming elections, can you imagine anything at all of a positive nature occurring in the months to come? Bush/Cheney should be forced to resign for the good of the country. NOW!

Friday, December 23, 2005

Happy Holidays

It appears to me that nothing much is going to happen until after the holidays (as usual). So Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. Morialekafa will return on Monday the 26th. Eat and drink and be of good cheer, and be prepared for god knows what next year.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Ghouls and Wimps

It seems clear to me that we need some new terms to describe what is going on in American politics at the moment. Republicans are no longer all conservatives but many are neoconservatives, and neoconservatives are not really conservatives but radicals. Democrats are no longer automatically liberals but now have many who are considered Republican-Lite. That is, they are not liberals at all. Liberal/Conservative, Democrat/Republican, just don't cut it anymore. So I suggest we call the two presumably opposed groups what they really seem to be: Ghouls and Wimps.

The Ghouls, at the moment in the majority and holding all the power, are in favor of cutting 40 or so billion dollars from the national debt. They want to do this by taking money from the poor and middle class by cutting programs that help them. For example, medicaid. Whereas at the moment if a family of three has an income of $17,000 per year and now pays $3 for an initial medical exam, the Ghouls think they should have to pay somewhere between $20 and $120. Similarly, students who depend upon loans to pay their way through college should now have to pay higher inerest rates on their loans. Never mind that for the first time in history American students are falling behind other countries with respect to their educations and abilitites. After all, who needs bright, creative, intelligent people anyway? We can always hire them from India, Pakistan, and Japan.

The Ghouls are not without compassion. They are very concerned that wealthy people, especially those with incomes only hovering around a million a year, are unduly suffering from their taxes. So the 40 billion in cuts is designed to balance the approximately 100 billion in tax cuts for the obscenely wealthy. Is this not truly compassionate? Is it not fiscal conservatism?

The Ghouls also are big on torture. When challenged on this by one of their own they did everything they could to insure they could continue to torture with impunity. Eventually they had to pretend that they wouldn't do it anymore but, of course, wink, wink, they know what is really going on.

Ghouls also believe it is perfectly allright to spy on innocent Americans as long as their Ghoul in charge says it is okay (because Ghouls do not have to obey the laws). They also think it is fine that they can imprison anyone they wish for no reason at all for the rest of their life with no recourse to any form of justice whatsoever. This is regarded as a perogative of the Ghoul in charge. Ghouls are also allowed to lie constantly about everything because - well, because they are Ghouls.

Wimps pretend to oppose most of the things Ghouls do. But they are very careful not to upset the Ghouls in any way. So if the Ghouls say we should go to "war" the Wimps say we need more troops (they don't want to appear wimpy). When the Ghouls want to rob the poor to fund the rich the Wimps usually go along (they don't want to appear to be obstructionist). When the Ghouls tell one outrageous lie after another the Wimps don't want to call attention to it (it might cause trouble). The Wimps know how corrupt and dishonest the Ghouls really are but don't dare say anything because they are complicit in much of the dishonesty and don't want to "rock the boat." It doesn't seem to matter how outrageous the behavior of the Ghouls, how illegal or unconstitutional, how disgusting, how criminal, or how obvious the crime, Wimps simply will not challenge it. Isn't that what Wimps are for?

Wednesday, December 21, 2005


Does anyone but me ever reflect on the absurdities of American culture and politics. Doesn't it strike you as absurd that in the election for President of 2000 one of the candidates was probably the most qualified candidate for the Presidency there ever was, whereas his opponent was a known loser, not at all qualified to become President, but who then actually became President. He wasn't really elected, of course, but, rather, appointed by a dishonest, illegal, and unconstitutional Supreme Court. This doesn't change the fact that this was absurd, to say the least.

How about going to "war" against Iraq because the towers were attacked by someone else? Iraq had nothing to do with it, was not even remotely involved, but was singled out for attack anyway. Is this not absurd?

The national debt is at an all time high. So what do Republicans do? They pass more tax breaks for the wealthiest people in the world. People who already have more money than they could ever use in probably hundreds of years. In order to finance this they actually take money from the poor. Is this not absurd?

Some forty million people in the U.S. have no health insurance. Does Congress worry about this? No, not at all. They worry about homosexuals marrying, women having rights, and flag burning. Is this not absurd?

The Bush/Cheney administration stays in power because of corporate power and the backing of religious fundamentalists. These two groups having nothing in common. Corporations could care less about homosexual marriages and abortion and the fundamentalists are too stupid to realize they are being conned. Is this not absurd?

The Bush/Cheney administration is about to implode. It has proven to be so corrupt and incompetent that many of the major players are in trouble: Rove, Libby, Abramhof, DeLay, Frist, etc., etc., etc. So what is the Republican "base" concerned about? Christmas, that's what. We should refuse to shop at any store that emphasizes "holidays" rather than Christmas. Is this not entirely absurd?

Bush, Rice, and others are insisting that we do not torture at the same time Bush/Cheney are trying to block an anti-torture amendment sponsored by McCain. Is this not absurd? They managed to compromise with McCain with an absurd pretense that they are not going to torture anymore.

Bush argues repeatedly that we must "stay the course" in Iraq. To do otherwise would dishonor those who have already died. So we must insist on further deaths to honor the already dead. Is this not totally absurd.

I could go on but I am being pressed by family to get off the web so they can conduct more important business. So Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, and whatever.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

"...a goddam piece of paper"

Doug Thompson of Capital Hill Blue reports that during a meeting of Republicans discussing the Patriot Act Bush said, "I don't give a goddam, I'm the President and Commander-in-Chief. Do it my way...Stop throwing the Constitution in my face. It's just a goddamed piece of paper." This was apparently confirmed by at least three witnesses.

So there you have it. That's what your President thinks of the U.S. Constitution. Is it any wonder he violates it whenever he feels like? And of course he has toadies like Gonsalez and others who tell him he can do so because he is all powerful, citing very questionable interpretations of the law. By now it appears quite clear that he did overreach his authority when it comes to spying on American citizens. According to John Dean, who knows something about abuses of power, Bush has admitted to an impeachable offense. And there is more and more talk about impeachment. John Conyers has also suggested that Bush/Cheney be censured for what they did about 9/11. Bush knows he is in truly hot water, witness his attempt to silence the New York Times about this.

But will anything really happen? Are our Corporate masters fed up enough with Bush/Cheney to agree to finally take some action against them - like, maybe, force them to resign? After all, what else can possibly go wrong for this incompetent, criminal administration? Or will the Republicans, once again, close ranks and protect their war criminals and incompetents. This latest outrage against the Constitution and American law may be the straw that breaks it (god, how I hope so). Bush now has both feet firmly planted in do-do. Will he come out once again smelling like a rose? How much more is the American public willing to take?

Monday, December 19, 2005

Did he or didn't he?

Did Bush act legally when he secretly authorized the NSA to spy on American citizens? He, of course, insists that what he did was legal (you could hardly expect him to claim otherwise). But many others, including John Dean, think he not only acted illegally but has admitted to an impeachable offense. Both Democrats and Republicans have called for an investigation. As Bush apparently called a meeting on December 6th with officials from the New York Times, specifically to try to get them not to run the story, he may have suspected or known that he had acted illegally. Apparently Bush thinks he can do whatever he wants because Gonzales and others have led him to believe that as Commander-in-Chief he has the authority to do anything he wants. While I am not a lawyer I am positive there is nothing in the Constitution or American law that allows a President to override the law whenever he wishes. It is clear that Bush has acted above and beyond the law all along. Note his claim that he can lock up prisoners for as long as he wants, with no rights whatsoever, and so on. Indeed, this is why they are treating Padilla is such a ridiculous fashion - they fear that if it goes to the Supreme Court they will be told that they do not, in fact, have such authority.

This latest almost surely illegal activity aside, can there be any doubt that Bush/Cheney should be impeached? Can anyone be ignorant of the enormity of their war crimes? The unbelievable misery they have brought upon the people of Iraq and also on the people of the U.S.? And for what? So Bush could be a "war president?" So we could control the Middle East? So we could "spread democracy?" So Cheney's oil companies could become even more filthy rich?

If you want to see the future look to South America. Evo Morales, the first indigenous President of Bolivia. Chavez in Venezuela. Progressives in Brazil and Argentina. They are going to break with the colonial traditions that have kept them subservient to the U.S. for so many years. Their people for the first time are going to actually benefit from their own natural resources rather than having them stolen by the powers that be. Viva Morales! Viva Venezuela! Viva Socialist states like Norway and Sweden! Death to imperialism! There is hope for the world in South America if not in North America.

Bush/Cheney and the neocons are war criminals. There is no doubt about this. They deserve to be punished for their crimes. But will that happy day ever come? Doubtful. Remember, in their world, might makes right. Black makes white. Up makes down. Lies equal truth. We do not torture. Iraq had WMD's. We are more safe now. Things are going well. The national debt doesn't matter. The rich deserve more money. God is on our side. We, alone, are good. The rapture is coming soon. Hoorah!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Ho-hum, another speech - and an essay

Bush gave another speech. From the Oval Office. Big deal. Apparently he said we are winning the war in Iraq. As usual I didn't watch or listen. Quite frankly, the sight or sound of him makes me sick. I doubt we are winning. I don't even know what winning in Iraq might consist of unless being able to control their country and resources. I think the relatively large turnout indicates that the Iraqis think this is the only way they can get us out. Powell said earlier today (or yesterday) that America will have a presence in Iraq for years to come. Of course we will. That was/is the plan. Can't let all that oil go unguarded. No mention, of course, of Bush's illegal spying on American citizens. This will be ignored and just fade away like all the rest of his transgressions. As virtually nothing seems to be happening other than more lies here is another essay.

Save the…

Save the whales! Save the gorillas! Save the elephants! Save the bull trout! Save the caribou! Save the salmon! Save the pygmy rabbits! Save the prairie dogs! Save the orangutans! Save the wolves! Save the orcas! Save the chimpanzees! Save the baby seals! Save the wild horses! Save the sage hens! Save the grizzly bears! Save the puffins! Save the tigers! Save the Panda bears! Save the spotted owl! Save the wolverines, the lynx, and the bobcats! Save the Condor, the Brown Pelican and the Albatross! Need I mention the Borax Lake Chubb, the Bliss Rapids Snail, the Lost River Sucker and the Wyoming Toad? How about the thousands of other endangered species?
I can’t honestly say that I have been solicited for funds to save all of these creatures, but I certainly have been for many of them. In some cases I actually donated money for what I believe to be worthy causes. But it has made me think about it. Why should I, a mere individual, have to feel responsible for the potential disappearance of species? I pay taxes. Why didn’t/doesn’t the Government take care of this sort of thing? How is it they have been so irresponsible and allowed things to deteriorate so badly? Why haven’t they looked after the planet better than they have?
Consider what Europeans set about doing when they first arrived in the “New World.” They slaughtered the Passenger Pidgeon into extinction very quickly. They attempted to do the same thing to the Buffalo (and almost succeeded). They did away with the wolves so successfully we have recently had to reintroduce them from Canada. The Grizzly Bear, too, was virtually eliminated, as were coyotes, prairie dogs, wild turkeys, alligators, eagles, hawks, and virtually everything else that moved; gunned down and trapped with such unbridled mindlessness and savagery as to be almost impossible to understand. And it was not just the animals and birds and fishes that suffered this onslaught, the indigenous people did likewise. Whole Indian tribes were decimated, wiped out, if not by force of arms, by the use of smallpox and other diseases. In most cases the motive for this was, of course, to take over Indian lands and resources. But in many cases it was a question of “the only good Indian is a dead Indian.” Even the children were slaughtered, “nits make lice.”
Even now we are struggling with the effects of this unprecedented attack on the environment and everything in it. Save the Salmon! Save the Cod! Save the Burbot! Save the Forests! Save the Great Lakes! Everywhere we look we are being asked to help repair the sometimes irreparable damage we have done to our environment and the creatures that try to survive in it. How can one explain this apparently insatiable blood lust to destroy virtually everything with no concern for the future or the consequences?
I suggest this has been the case historically (and continues even now) because Europeans brought with them to the “New World” a totally unprecedented ethos. This ethos came about primarily because of two basic building blocks or developments in European thought. The first of these came from the bible: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. And God blessed them, and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.” Notice here that man is not only to have dominion over the earth but also to subdue it.
The second building block, not entirely unrelated to the first, was the belief in a “Great Chain of Being.” That is, all creatures constituted a kind of ladder leading from the lowest to the highest, the highest, of course being white European males (unhappily this belief is still quite widespread).
The result of these two belief systems was the tendency by Europeans to hold the rest of nature, particular the flora and fauna, and, indeed, anything “below” themselves, relatively speaking, in contempt. There was such abundance in the New World they felt they could subdue at will, and did. They seemed to believe there was no end to this abundance. It was estimated that at the time Europeans arrived in what is now the United States there were 50 million buffalo. In a relatively short period there were no more than a few hundred (at most). They killed wantonly, took just the hides and the tongues, and, in fact, in many cases just shot them for sport.
This was unprecedented because of the lack of respect. American Indians killed, to be sure, but they had respect for the animals, and rituals and ceremonies to keep them healthy and prolific. Cynics might argue the Indians didn’t kill them all simply because they didn’t have enough people or the technology but this cannot be true. Europeans didn’t kill indiscriminately because there were too many Europeans, they killed just because they had the means, but also because they had a belief system that told them it was their right to do so. Following Max Weber’s The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, we might entitle a book on this subject, The European Ethos and the Rape of Mother Nature.
And notice this was not peculiar to the Americas. The same pattern was followed wherever Europeans spread in the “Age of Exploration:” in Australia, Tasmania, South America, the Middle East, the Far East, and Africa. Wherever Europeans went, following their ethos, they destroyed: the animals, the forests, the indigenous peoples, whatever they wished. This still continues and, of course, is not a topic that can be dealt with here. It would require volumes: tomes of misery, rape, arson, destruction and death, shameful acts of greed and pillage, excused as “the white man’s burden.” It continues.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

King George?

Watch 'n Wait: I believe you are right. The neocons are leading us into WW III. I am not so sure they are doing this "unavoidably." I am not in the least surprised to learn that NSA has been illegally spying on U.S. citizens.

The big news is, of course, that the NSA, at Bush's discretion, has been (presumably) illegally spying on U.S. citizens within the borders of the U.S. There seems to be some confusion over whether or not what he ordered was truly illegal. But as near as I can tell it was. Somewhere I read there is a legal mechanism for doing what he wanted but that he couldn't be bothered to use it, preferring instead to bypass it entirely. This certainly fits with his previous behavior that indicates he does, in fact, think he has Kingly prerogatives (he can jail people indefinitely on a whim, etc.). If, as some claim, this was illegal, then he has committed (and admitted to) another impeachable offense. The circumstances leading up to, and his pre-emptive invasion of Iraq, are certainly impeachable enough. But apparently Republicans are determined to protect their war criminals no matter what. And with an absolutely wimpy Democratic Party going along with the war crimes it appears there is little we can do about it. Fact is, we no longer have two different political parties so there is no real opposition party. They all suck from the same corporate teats. There were, for example, 1,052 supoenas for the Clinton administration. There have been 3 for the Bush/Cheney administration. That is, of course, because they returned honesty and dignity to the White House.

I have not read Jimmy Carter's new book on American Values. I saw a brief excerpt on the web. Apparently we (that is, the U.S.) is holding many children in prisoner camps, children as young as eight (8) years of age. They are not allowed lawyers, nor even allowed to see their mothers. Rumsfeld is apparently well aware of this and the policy is that age makes no difference. Rumsfeld and his ilk are no less than absolute monsters. I hope I live long enough to see them all in jail where they clearly belong.

I wish Fitzgerald would either indict Rove or not. I can't stand the suspense. I can't help but believe he may be going to indict more than just Rove. How I hope so!

I like Feingold. I don't care if he is Jewish or not. But I do care if he is an uncritical supporter of Israel, no matter how much land and water they try to steal from the Palestinians. Until Israel is curbed there will never be peace in the Middle East. And now that they are threatening Iran we may, indeed, be looking at WW III. If Israel is stupid enough to attack Iran let them do it without any support from the U.S. Disaster in the making. And a U.S. administration stupid enough to get sucked into it, if not actively striving to bring it about.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Does Bush have a death wish?

Suzie Creamcheese: Thank your for your comments. I have been a fan of George Monbiot for some time. I think he is consistently very insightful and well worth reading.As far as touting my book, The Cham Stones, I have to confess to having a financial problem that leads me to do things I don't really want to do - like trying to sell my book on my blog. The fact is, in spite of my advanced age, I have a 20 year old son who is attending an out of state University. The tuition is expensive. As a retired University Professor I am not wealthy, complicated by the fact that I am living too long and outliving my retirement benefits. So I am trying to leave no stone unturned, so to speak. It does make me feel like an (ugh) American, which of course I am (but under present circumstances I would prefer not to be). But back to business.

In an interview with Brian Williams of NBC Bush apparently said the following: "I remember the day we committed the troops, or I committed the troops, there's no 'we' to it. I committed the troops to combat in Iraq. And I left here (the Oval Office), walked out the door, walked around that South Lawn with my trusty dog Spot,just thinking about the consequences."

Is he really unaware that he is confessing to having committed a war crime? Can he possibly be that out of touch with reality? I fear so. As near as I can tell he must basically want everyone to know that he, George W. Bush, is a very important person who can order "wars" or whatever he wants. I guess Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, et al, had nothing to do with it. I think he must have stopped listening to Rove. I refuse to even comment on his "trusty dog Spot."

Well, Bush and McCain seem to have arrived at some agreement about torture. They have apparently agreed that everyone will abide by the Military Code. Of course the Military Code is being revised so no doubt it will still allow for torture but under another name. So McCain gets his victory (which will help him in his quest for the Presidency) and Bush gets credit for being flexible. If you believe any of this dreck let me sell you some nonexistent property.

The Senate, much to their credit, has blocked the renewal of the Patriot Act, or at least some of its more objectionable features. Perhaps there is hope after all.

It now turns out that Bush signed a secret document to allow spying on U.S. citizens, even though such a things was/is illegal. I gather this is going to be investigated by Congress (ha ha).

I guess the most interesting development of all has to do with the latest argument from the anti-evolutionists that if people are merely animals, and animals wrote the Constitution, the Constitution must be irrelevant. At least I think that is what they are saying. I must confess that everything these people say is so far fetched and ridiculous my tiny brain is not able to cope with it. The bible is literally true? The earth is only 6000 years old? People existed contemporaneously with dinosaurs? The Grand Canyon is a result of the flood? The Rapture is imminent? George W. Bush communicates with and was sent by God to spread democracy around the earth? Intelligent Design is as useful and believable as the theory of evolution? Why do I not believe any of this? Because I am a disgusting atheist who is determined to take the Christ out of Christmas. If there is a Christ in Christmas nowadays he has to be hiding somewhere in a cash register.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Bush boasting of war crimes?

Let me try to get this straight. Attacking a sovereign nation that is no threat to you is clearly recognized as a war crime. Iraq was clearly no threat to the U.S. Bush "pre-emptively" attacked Iraq anyway. He has now accepted the responsibility for doing just that. So why does that not make him a war criminal? As I have repeatedly pointed out, torture is a war crime, hiding prisoners from the Red Cross is a war crime, using white phosphorous on people is a war crime, war profiteering is a war crime, killing civilians is a war crime. Bush/Cheney have clearly been involved in all of this. Then, ipso facto, they are war criminals. Bush has just now said again he will pre-emptively attack others if he feels like it (semi-happily, at least, Rumsfeld having destroyed the army, he probably can't do this). He did say that Rumsfeld has "done a heck of a job." He certainly has, if you think losing a "war" and ruining an army is the way to go.

Now all hopes seem to ride on the Iraqi election. This election can never be seen as legitimate as it is held while the country is being occupied, there is so much violence candidates couldn't even campaign, there are so many candidates most people don't even know who they all are, most Iraqis will vote however their religious leaders tell them to, and so on. As the Bush/Cheney administration's goal is to have permanent bases in Iraq it will be most interesting to see what they will do if even this puppet government asks them to leave (which is apparently a possibility). If Bush/Cheney would come right out and say the U.S. has no intention of having permanent bases in Iraq it would make an enormous difference. But have you heard them say anything like that? Not yet, and you're not likely to either. They will have to be literally thrown out.

We have had no snow for almost two weeks. There is still a little on the ground. The temperature has hung somewhere between 5 and 25 degrees for days. It is miserable. However, tonight is clear and there is a full moon so large you feel you might actually reach out and touch it. Magnificent! We are now engaged in the annual Kill-a-Tree-for Christ" festivities. We did not murder one of our own trees this year. My wife took the easy way and actually purchased a tree at great expense from one of the lots that sell trees this time of year. When I protested that the tree was obscenely expensive she replied that she bought it from a poor woman who was watching the lot while her husband was out cutting more trees. She was probably watching the lot from the comfort of the cab of her fairly new Ford 250. She did not say where her husband was cutting the trees. I am pretty suspicious about all of this but the tree is up, decorated, and ready to be inundated with mostly useless presents. It's the American way. So Happy Holidays everyone wherever and whomever you are. I hope you all get copies of The Cham Stones.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Today at Sandhill

Sandhill. That is what I have decided to call our "estate" (house plus garage and couple of outbuildings) here in North Idaho. A more accurate description would be sand pile. But sand pile just does not have the same connotation of gentility and English upper classness that Sandhill does. You know, like Yasna Polanyi, Sandhurst, Windsor, etc. Of course we have no servants, peons, peasants, slaves or stuff like that. But Sandhill will have to do. So what went on today at Sandhill?

First, my wife, for some reason known only to the supernaturals that deal with females, bought a bar of soap so large that you have to hold it with both hands. Have you ever tried to shower with a bar of soap that has to be held in both hands?Then our dryer gave up the ghost (so to speak). Actually, she just wore it out what with 24 hour usage every day. It cost me forty bucks to be told it didn't work and we would need a new one. Sigh. Then the deer were in the garden (happily they can't do much damage this time of year). Haven't seen our flock of wild turkeys for the past couple of days. Maybe too cold for them. At least they aren't pooping on our deck at the moment.

But moving on to more national problems and developments. A man in Georgia (I think Atlanta) was having trouble getting subway (or bus) tokens out of the token machine. A man standing there offered to help by giving him a token. The recipient of the token, being a decent sort, paid him the $1.75 the token was worth, at which point the good samaritan was arrested (apparently individuals can't sell tokens). Not only was he arrested, he was brought to trial. I do not know what the outcome was. But the prosecutor apparently said, "the law is the law."

In another development, it appears that a father has his two year old daughter here in the U.S. with him and wants to keep her here. This is apparently not against the law in the sense that he has illegal custody or something. The problem is, she was not born in the U.S. and therefore they are going to deport her (even though the father wants to keep her). Apparently they believe she may be a threat to the U.S. Remember, the law is the law. Bureacracy knows no common sense.

Then it was announced that the U.S. mint is going to bring out new one dollar coins with the likenesses of past presidents. Having brought out dollar coins twice before that failed miserably they are going to try again. But like before they are not going to stop printing one dollar bills which insures the new coins, like the others, will fail to be used. Canada, of course, being light years ahead of the U.S. in common sense, stopped printing one dollar bills when they introduced the one dollar coins and voila, they are used successfully in Canada (along with the perfectly sensible two dollar coins). I suspect the U.S. does this on purpose as it has the effect of taking money out of circulation to be saved in piggy banks instead.

Now, on the more important matters. John McCain, as you know, has introduced a bill to ban torture and degrading treatment of prisoners anywhere at anytime. He wants to insure that the military, FBI, CIA, and everyone else has to follow the Army Military Code on such matters. Cheney and the White House are opposed to his bill and have done everything they can to defeat it, including the threat of a completely unprecedented veto. But now they have come up with a easier solution - they have rewritten the Army Manual! Clever, no? McCain is not going to like this. Stay tuned.

The best for last. In his fourth speech on Iraq Bush has announced that he is responsible to declaring "war" on Iraq as a result of bad intelligence. This has produced oohs and aahs all over the place. Wow! Bush has admitted he declared war because of faulty intelligence. To me this represents a confession of war crimes. The Intelligence was not faulty, at least not all of it. They knew, for example, that the Niger yellowcake claim was not true. They also knew the aluminum tubes were not for nuclear projects. They knew Sadam was not a threat to the U.S. as they had inspectors right there on the ground telling us there were no WMD's. They also knew that after 12 years of constant overflights and sanctions Iraq could not possibly have been a threat. They had virtually the entire world telling them not to go to "war" because it was not necessary. But Bush wanted to prove he was a "War President," and began this totally illegal, unconstitutional, immoral, and unnecessary war anyway. It doesn't even matter whether the intelligence was wrong or not. The pre-emptive attack on a sovereign nation that was no threat to us was a war crime, plain and simple. The intelligence was indeed "fixed" to bring about the desired result. Bush/Cheney, of course, deny they exaggerated or lied about the intelligence. What else would you expect? The enormity of this criminal activity seems to escape the Republican Party that continues to protect them. Shame!!

Tomorrow the Iraqis vote for the first time for a "democratic" administration. A vote under the supervision of the U.S., an occupying power, with control over the candidates and the election. What do you think will happen if the new Iraq administration asks the U.S. to leave and give up their idea of permanent bases there? It should prove to be most interesting.

Even better! According to Robert Novak (granted a comple jerk), Bush must know who the leaker was. Novak seems pretty certain of this. Now, if Bush does indeed know the identity of the leaker why does he not come forward and say so. Why does he not fire the individual? Why did he lie when he said he didn't know, but wanted to, and would punish whoever it was? My guess is Bush knew from the very first who the leaker was. He claimed he didn't and went on to say he didn't think anyone would ever know, etc. He lied. Big time. Am I the only one who thinks this is really important? Is this miserable excuse for a President never going to be held accountable for anything? Even his consistent, persistent, even pathological lying? Has the U.S. gone completely mad? I fear so.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005


"Removing Sadam Hussein makes this world a better place and America a safer country." So speaks George W. Bush. And he says if he had to do it again, he would. I fear he believes this. It is possible that taking out Sadam Hussein MIGHT HAVE made the world a better place. But, looking at what has happened in Iraq, what is happening in Iraq, this is more than merely doubtful. Indeed, I believe it is the case that only 44% of Iraqis think they are better off now than under Hussein. A somewhat larger percentage thinks the U.S. should get out of Iraq, the sooner the better. As far as making America a safer country, nothing could be more nonsensical. If anything we are clearly less safe than we were before.

Condi Rice says that Iran keeps "meddling" in Iraq. According to my dictionary, meddling means, "interfere in or busy oneself unduly with others concerns." I guess meddling would not quite cover what the U.S. is doing in Iraq. Let's say violent pathological rape is more like it, a little more serious than meddling. When it comes to the U.S. I don't quite know what to make of meddling. Are we merely meddling in Lebanon? Syria? North Korea? Palestine? Venezuela? Chile? Ukraine? Uzbekistan? etc., etc. Does it not occur to any of the pea-brained neocons that it is really not our business to be constantly interfering in the affairs of everyone else on the globe? Who or what gives us the right to insist on spreading democracy around the world at the point of a gun? Nothing, of course, except for the fact that we think we have the guns to do it. But as Vietnam and Iraq have taught us, it takes more than guns. We will fail in Iraq just as we failed in Vietnam. It is inevitable.

The attempt on the part of the White House to roviate Murtha seems to have collapsed entirely. Indeed, we aren't hearing much about roviating anyone these days. It appears that the American public has now become totally fed up with this indecent, incompetent, criminal administration. It is collapsing in front of our eyes, but not fast enough to suit me.

This Republican administration would collapse much sooner if it were not for the support it is getting from Democrats: those spineless, cowardly, ineffective, timid, useless opposition figures that seem to think they have to outmachismo Republicans in order to prove they are not soft on defense. If Democrats would unite behind Murtha and Dean and actually become a genuine opposition party they would almost certainly be able to take over the Senate, if not the House. If they can't get their act together we should rename them the Pansy Party and start a meaningful third party. The time might finally be ripe.

What a hopeless bunch of both Democrats and Republicans we have managed to field. Time for entirely new teams.

Monday, December 12, 2005

A useless death slightly less than three hours from this very moment Stanley "Tookie" Williams will be put to death (unless some truly extraordinary event occurs). I believe this is very wrong. Do I believe this because I think he is not guilty of the murder he has been charged with? No, quite frankly, I believe whether he is guilty or innocent of those murders is basically irrelevant at the moment. I have no idea if he is guilty or not. Do I believe he should get a reprieve because he has tried to turn his life (such as it is) around, written anti-gang books, and such? No, I don't think writing a few books makes him any the less guilty or innocent and should have nothing to do with the issue of life and death. Do I think his life should be spared because he has so many celebrities and others supporting him? No, I think that, too, is irrelevant. Do I think he should be spared because he has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize several times? No, remember that even George W. Bush has been nominated. Being nominated, in and of itself, is basically meaningless. I think he should not be put to death because it is, at this point in time, utterly pointless. What conceivable benefit results from his death at this time? He has been on death row for 25 years. He is not going to be pardoned and set free unless, somehow, it might be shown that he was, in fact, innocent (which seems highly unlikely). He cannot harm the broader community in any way and he might, in fact, be able to contribute some some positive input into the problem of gangs and gang violence. The only reason for his execution that I can see is revenge. But if revenge is the only motive why have we waited for 25 years? Twenty five years on death row seems to me clearly harsh and unusual punishment. At this point in time I don't care if the evidence against him was overwhelming or not. No useful purpose is being served by taking his life. There is also the question of whether a so-called civilized society should even have a death penalty in the first place. Note that most other countries abandoned the death penalty long ago and think we are little more than barbarians for continuing it. I don't know Stanley Williams, I don't even know much about him, I have no idea if he was truly guilty or not, but I do know that killing him for the basest of human motives, revenge, is not something to be condoned. I wonder, does the Gropenfueher not want to be accused of favoring another bodybuilder? I see no other reason for this decision.

The present administration is refusing to allow the Red Cross access to some of their prisoners. They claim these prisoners are not subject to the Geneva Convention and do not have any rights. Thus they can be held in secret for presumably as long as they live with no access to a lawyer, no visits from anyone, no way to challenge the authority under which they are being held. Do you believe that any human being anywhere, under any circumstances, for any reason whatsoever, should be able to be held indefinately with no rights at all? I don't. I think anyone who does is simply a monster. We seem not to lack for monsters at the moment.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

How long?

How long is the Republican party going to continue to support and defend the war criminals in their midst? The pre-emptive "war" on Iraq was clearly a war crime. Torturing is a war crime. Hiding people from the Red Cross is a war crime. War profiteering is a war crime. Killing civilians is a war crime. Using white phosphorous on individuals is a war crime. Rendition is a war crime. Can anyone deny that the Bush/Cheney administration is not guilty of all of these, and more? It seems to me this is quite clear. It is also quite clear that lying to Congress and the American Public to start a "war" against a sovereign nation that is no threat to you, if not a war crime, is certainly impeachable. So why do Republicans continue to support and defend these criminals? Does that not make them complicit in war crimes? Do they really believe they can escape unscathed from what they have done? Don't they realize this is a cancer that will eventually totally destroy their party if they don't take some action against it? Or is it just me that thinks this? Maybe that's it. I am just out of touch with reality. They didn't really do all of these terrible things. It is all just my imagination.

I guess it is all my imagination that DeLay, Frist, Abramhof, Rove, Libby, et al, are all in trouble one way or another. The "war" in Iraq is really going well. Osama bin Laden is no longer a person of interest, New Orleans is being efficiently rebuilt, the national debt doesn't really matter, global warming is just an urban myth, the price of gasoline is going to return to 35 cents a gallon soon, the Iraqis are going to have a democratic government, we do not torture, and god is still talking with George W. Bush so all is well.

Is it just my imagination, too, that the world comes to a stop on friday and then starts up again on monday? I remember once seeing that a notice appeared one day on the bulletin board of some girl's school that said, "tomorrow is cancelled due to lack of interest." That is what I think goes on now in American culture: "the week-end has been cancelled due to lack of interest."

I also remember seeing graffiti once on the bathroom wall of a very strange bar that read, "help save Peter Rabbit, please help." That is how I feel at the moment.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Still negotiating?

Apparently the White House is still negotiating with McCain over torture. Doesn't this strike anyone but me as utterly ridiculous? How could anyone negotiate torture? I guess what this is all about is trying somehow to protect the already known torturers from being punished? I guess that figures, as no one else in this totally incompetent administration has ever been held accountable for anything. As this torture business leads all the way to the Pentagon and the White House you can bet they are trying to cover their butts.

Isn't it curious that there was no mention of the Nobel Prize for literature whatsoever in the MSM but there has been coverage of the Peace Prize. Think it had anything to do with Pintner's passionate political speech? Naw, that would be too obvious (except that CNN and the other big News Organizations obviously don't care what the public thinks about anything). They obviously prefer we do not think at all. Hence the absolute trivia they try to pass off as news. And, of course, there is little or no news on week ends. Once, when I lived for a time on the Kona coast, I ritually tuned in the morning news. It usually consisted of something like Auntie Sweetie's son ran over another chicken this morning, and stuff like that. But one morning they actually started off by saying, "there is no news this morning." I liked that.

It is 14 degrees Fahrenheit. There is ice and snow. The sky is clear and there are many stars. It is quite beautiful but not very comfortable. This evening I gave my first ever book reading/signing (The Cham Stones). There weren't as many people as I might have wished (I hope because of the cold and a couple of other competing events) but it went well and we sold some books. Actually, it was quite enjoyable and there were some good questions.

I guess I am one of the few people who look forward to monday. It seems to me the world comes back to life on monday. And I hate days when there is no mail. I saw a heading on Buzzflash, "Americans hate Cheney." Amen.

"It is not fit that you sit here any longer! shall now give place to better men."
Oliver Cromwell to Parliament, 1654

Friday, December 09, 2005

The Nobel Prize?

Suzie Creamcheese: I never thought about the attack itself as opposed to the target. I think the problem with that, for me, is that the attack is the humanicide. I do not believe "they" are interested in attacking our freedoms. I think they are more interested in their own freedoms. Freedom from U.S. meddling in their affairs, trying to control their countries (read oil), freedom from having U.S. troops on their soil, and such things. Similarly, I don't think it is difficult to understand why they "hate" us. Much has to do, of course with the Israeli/Palestinian problem and the U.S. unconditional support for what is not much more than Israeli theft and genocide. Keep thinking, apparently no one else is.

Harold Pintner won the Nobel Prize for Literature. He apparently gave an impassioned political speech (I was not able to hear it) in which, among other things, he suggested that Bush/Blair should be tried for war crimes (at least Blair as Bush never signed the War Crimes Act (or whatever it is called). I believe he is absolutely correct. My wife, who was on the computer early yesterday morning, told me this story was all over the alternate news sources. This inspired me to force myself to watch CNN for the next two hours. What I suspected would be true proved to be true. There was no mention of Pintner's speech at all, let alone his statement on war crimes. Not only that! There was no mention of the Nobel Prize! What there was, however, was a virtually endless discussion of Mariah Carey and the Grammy awards. When they paused from this for a few moments they told us over and over again about the shooting in Miami. This was truly amusing as they made a point of telling us they didn't yet know much of anything about it. Wouldn't you think they might wait until they did know something about it? Not CNN. Once they get a story, any story, no matter how local and/or petty, they stick with it 24/7. There was nothing about the Nobel Prize or Pintner's speech in our local (and only) major newspaper either. I don't necessarily think this was a deliberate omission. I think they have never heard of the Nobel Prizes or, if they have, they think they must be something for foreigners.

American culture. American values. Is in any wonder we have a mental midget as President, Mr. Evil as Vice-President, and an absolute babbling old fool as Secretary of Defense? My mother used to say, so many years ago now, "there's no fool like an old fool." How appropriate. I won't even mention Condi Rice who has now completely destroyed any credibility the U.S. might have had left (actually none, so I guess she didn't really do that much damage).

Now there is a rumor that Cheney has become such a liability he might be forced out after the New Year, resigning for his health. Don't believe it. He'll never resign and it might be more likely he will get rid of Bush than vice-vera. It is also rumored that Rumsfeld might retire (he denies it) to be replaced by - can you believe it - Joe Lieberman. I guess this proves that intelligent design is alive and well somewhere in the galaxy - certainly not here.

"We do not torture." This reminds me of a scene in For Whom the Bell Tolls, when one of my favorites, Akim Tamiroff, repeats in his drunken state "I do not provoke." It all reminds me of that quintessential American credo, "Get rich, sleep till noon, and screw 'em all." Help!

Monday, December 05, 2005

The Peace Tunnel

Morialekafa is going on a Fool's errand to Seattle and will not be back on the web until friday, the 9th. Sorry.

Suzie Creamcheese: I'm not certain you understand my position. There is (1) killing in self defense (understandable and acceptable), there is (2) killing in warfare (understandable and acceptable but only under condition 1, above. There is killing for personal or monetary gain (understandable but totally unacceptable), there is genocide (understandable but totally unacceptable under any circumstances), and then there is what I call humanicide (not understandable and completely unacceptable under any circumstances). You seem to think that humanicide is understandable if not acceptable because it is motivated by hate and the wish to destabilise. But that is exactly why I think it is more properly defined as humanicide. One could argue, for example, that attacking the White House or the Pentagon, and perhaps by extension even Wall Street, was motivated by revenge. Revenge implies that somehow you were wronged and are now seeking redress. But you cannot argue that the innocents killed in the towers were guilty of wronging the attackers. And as the unfortunates that happened to be in the towers were totally innocent of anything, and constituted nothing but a random collection of human beings (in this case from 70 different countries) this can only be interpreted as an act of humanicide. That is, killing a mass of human beings for no reason other than simply wanting to kill them. That is, in the cases of killing in self defense, warfare, personal or monetary gain, and even genocide, there is an actual target that is in some sense meaningful at least to someone. In the case of humanicide there is no meaningful target other than the willfull destruction of human beings just for the sake of it. I don't know if this makes sense to you. Somehow it does to me. In any case, I appreciate your comments and it does stimulate me for further thought on the subject.

The "Reverend" Sun Myung Moon thinks we should build a 51 mile long "peace" tunnel under the ocean to link Russia to the United States. This can obviously be dismissed as another absurd idea from the man who thinks he is somehow "god." But why, you might ask, is Neil Bush, George's younger brother, apparently on board? I guess they want to award the no bid contract to Halliburton.

A poll in DeLay's home turf indicates that he has only 36% support whereas any generic Democrat has 49%. Don't count your chickens until they hatch. And do not under any circumstances become overconfident. There is always Diebold and rampant illegalities lurking in the background.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Negotiating torture?

In our local newspaper this morning there was an article about the fact that the White House was "negotiating" with McCain over torture. I also saw references to this negotiating on the web. What the hell are they talking about? Negotiating over torture? What form do these negotiations take? McCain sponsored an amendment (or rule, or whatever it was) that there would be no torture. NO TORTURE! None. This passed the Senate 90 to 9. So what is there to negotiate? Is the White House arguing that we ought to be able to torture some people only? Or, perhaps, they are arguing that certain techniques can be used but not others? Maybe torturing is acceptable on tuesday, thursday and saturday but not on other days? I guess they could be negotiating the definition of torture. They could be, I suppose, negotiating over where people could be tortured - like here, or Poland, or Romania, Egypt, or wherever, as long as it is not in the U.S. I have to admit, I do not understand how they could be negotiating torture.

If they are negotiating with McCain, what does that say for him? He wants no torturing. At least that is what he got the Senate to agree to. So why is he now negotiating. I guess it wouldn't have anything to do with how bad he wants to become president? And he obviously wants it bad. How else would you explain photographs of him actually hugging George W. Bush? How about supporting the teaching of Intelligent Design? How about his support for Bush's ridiculous "war?" At the moment it looks to me that McCain desperately wants to be the Republican candidate for president in 2008 and is willing to do anything not to upset the ultra-right Republican base. I can see no other explanation for his behavior in the last year or two. This is certainly not the McCain of the 2000 campaign. McCain, who has always been a warmonger (even worse than Bush) has now revealed himself as a shameless opportunist willing to go to any length to become president. And he may very well succeed as he is about the only Republican candidate that (1) is not in legal or ethical trouble, (2) has cross-over appeal to independent and some democratic voters, (certainly not for me), and (3) is a genuine war hero as opposed to a Cheney/Bush slacker. I believe he would be a disaster as president and would keep us involved in endless war just as Bush/Cheney and the neocons wish (have to continue to support the obscene military/industrial budget no matter what).

The 9/11 attacks on the trade center and the pentagon are the perfect example of humanicide (see morialekafa 8-26-04 on humanicide). Three thousand people died, people from 70 different countries, and including more than 200 Muslims. The attackers had no idea who would be killed, had no reason to target them other than the fact that they existed, had no grudge against them, no excuse for what they did other than to just plain and simply kill large numbers of perfectly innocent people, including children. This was not war, not genocide, not self defense, not for personal or monetary gain, just not rational in any sense of that term. It was humanicide, the deliberate killing of large numbers of random human beings for no reasonable motive. Given what they apparently wanted to achieve it might have made at least some kind of sense to attack the pentagon or Wall street where at least the victims might have had some direct (however remote) connection to the ills they were complaining about. Those who perished in the trade center were truly innocents, especially the children. As I previously suggested, humanicide is a relatively recent phenomenon which I believe probably began during WW II. Unhappily, it seems to be spreading.

Saturday, December 03, 2005


"Washington D.C. is so drowned in words and disconnected from reality that it resembles an open-air insane asylum." So wrote Charley Reese on today.

How can one not agree with that assessment? What are we to think when we hear "our strategy is working," we are going to achieve "total victory," "we do not torture," "we are making progress," "we are fighting them there so as to not fight them here," "we know they have mobile biological labs," "they have reconstituted their nuclear program," "Sadam was having meetings with Osama bin Laden," and other such blatant and obvious lies. These are all just words with no meaning whatsoever, offered to make people think we are about to be imminently attacked, terrorists are here just waiting to strike, Sadam is about to attack us with aircraft, blah, blah, blah. Just words. Empty words.

I would like someone to tell me one true statement that either Bush or Cheney have ever stated. These people seem to think that talking need not have any connection whatsoever with reality. It's just words. Rumsfeld, of course, is the worst. Ask him a question, any question, and he just babbles on mindlessly, his words, if you try to take them seriously, are utterly meaningless. And it goes without saying that anything you hear out of the mouths of Bush/Cheney will merely be words. Words with no meaning attached to them just remain words, and meaning has long since been abandoned by the current administration.

We are never going to "cut and run," at the same time we are trying to develop a strategy to do just that. We will never settle for less than "complete victory," which we know full well is an absolute impossibility. "When the Iraqis stand up we will stand down," even though there is no plan to have anything but a permanent presence in the Middle East as well as permanent bases in Iraq. We are going to "spread democracy" throughout the Middle East. "They hate us because of our freedom." Words, words, words, words, and more words. Like Charley Reese, I no longer even listen to anything that verbally come out of Washington, D.C. Bush/Cheney and the rest of them might as well deliver their (totally lack of message) in pantomime. In fact, whenever Bush or Cheney appear on my television I immediately turn it off as I know it will be nothing more than hollow, meaningless, useless, words. Do not pay any attention to what they say, WATCH WHAT THEY DO. And if you concentrate on what they do you will be so horrified you will demand they be held accountable for their lies and war crimes.

Friday, December 02, 2005

By the Waterfall - short story

It is friday. Then saturday and sunday. According to the MSM there is no real news over the weekend. Oh, there might be local stories like car chases, or burning houses, perhaps even a kidnapping or two, and quite likely something about an execution, but nothing apparently happens anywhere else in the world that might be worthy enough to be offered to the American people. If we're lucky they might tell us something about the "war" in Iraq on monday, especially if they can claim it is going well. If it were not for the internet you might well think the world had come to a three day stop. As nothing much is happening here is another short story.

By The Waterfall (with apologies to Balzac)

In Spring the new cold water from the Sierras falls gracefully from a high worn cliff, runs across a small oak scattered meadow through stands of wildflowers, then plunges twenty feet into a narrow canyon where is formed a cool and attractive spot well hidden from the hot southern California sun. This is a private place under a giant oak and sheltered by huge granite boulders, a place where lovers should have little fear of discovery. It had suddenly become a place of horror.
"I never heard of a mountain lion attacking a full grown woman!" the Sheriff exclaimed, looking down at the mutilated nude body at the base of the waterfall. He peered suspiciously at Nathan, seated nearby with his head in his hands, still in shock.
"Finished with the pictures?" he asked the photographer, then he squatted on the heels of his worn cowboy boots to study the corpse. After a short time he rose, saying softly to himself, "Damned if I ever seen such a thing! Neck broke, tooth marks on her face and head, them long scratches on her body. Can't see what else it coulda been...then, she's not very big...lions have been known to attack children."
"Tell me again what happened," he ordered Nathan.
"Well," Nathan began, "as I told you, we were having a picnic...I went back to the car to get something...the camera. On my way back I heard a scream, a horrible scream. I ran here as fast as I could and that's when I found her, lying there, all bloody. Dead. I looked around but didn't see anything. But I'm sure she was attacked by a mountain lion. Oh god, it's so awful!"
"How do you know it was a mountain lion? Did you see it?"
Nathan paused, started to speak but stopped, then began again. "No, but I'm sure that's what it was. What else could have done it?"
"So, why was she naked? What were you doing here?"
"We just came to picnic. After we ate...I don't know...there's something about the waterfall that made her want to undress. She took off her clothes and went over there. That's when I went for the camera. I don't...I didn't...know her very well. We came to have a picnic. She went over to play in the water and..."
"To play in the water or to play with you?" the Sheriff's sarcasm seemed to Nathan brutal and inappropriate. "Am I supposed to believe that this beautiful girl undressed just to play in the water? You weren't screwing her? Come on, tell the truth."
"I didn't bring her here for that," Nathan blurted. "I told you, I hardly even knew her. But yes, after she took her clothes off we made love...there, on the bank." Nathan pointed to a protected grassy spot on the other side of the stream. "But what are you thinking? That I killed her? Why are you asking me so many questions? What difference does it make why we came here anyway?"
The Sheriff suspected that Nathan had not told him everything. Even so, he replied, "No, I don't think you killed her. There's no way you could have made those marks. But we'll have to get a coroner's report. I never heard of a mountain lion killing a grown woman before." Then, addressing the photographer again, he said gruffly, "Come on, let's wrap it up. Let's go."
The two medical assistants placed the body on a stretcher and struggled over the rough, hot terrain, picking their way carefully along the steep rocky path. When they finally reached the ambulance they placed the stretcher not so gently inside and immediately sat down to catch their breath and gulp greedily at the sheriff's canteen.
"Don't go out of town," instructed the Sheriff, looking directly into Nathan's eyes. "We may need to talk with you again." Then he added, "Sorry, son, I know how you must feel."
Nathan was surprised at the Sheriff's sudden expression of sympathy. He nodded and climbed miserably into his station wagon. "It had to have been the lion," he thought. "It could only have been her."
The coroner's report confirmed the accidental death caused, it concluded, by a wild animal, most probably a mountain lion. It went on to observe that as the dead woman weighed less than one hundred pounds it was possible, however unusual, that the animal had indeed attacked her. As far as the Sheriff was concerned that was the end of it. Not so for Nathan.
"Nathan, nice to see you after all these years. What can I do for you?" Professor Loftus pulled Nathan gently into his office with his right hand while closing the door with his left.
"Well..." Nathan began slowly, "I felt I had to talk with you. I've had a very strange and terrible experience. I...I just have to talk to someone. You may be the only person in the world who will understand. I'm sure everyone else would think I was crazy."
"Oh, come now, I'm sure it can't be that bad." Professor Loftus thought Nathan looked ill and motioned him to a comfortable chair.
"Well Professor Loftus, I..."
"Please Nathan, you can call me Bob. Now that you've finished your degree and are an up-and-coming assistant professor don't you think we should dispense with the formality?"
"Yes sir, I'll try. But please, I have to tell you what happened. Its been horrible! I have to tell someone and I can't tell anyone but you because no one else would believe it. I was with this girl," Nathan blurted, "up in the mountains. She was killed by a mountain lion. Maybe you read about it? It's been in all the papers."
"Yes, I did see something about it. It must have been terrible for you as well as for that unfortunate girl. But why do you feel you have to tell me about it?"
"Because Professor...uh, Bob...because you're an anthropologist. You were my advisor. You're the only one that can possibly understand. There's much more to it than anyone knows. Than anyone could possibly know or believe. I have to tell someone. You. Otherwise I think I may lose my mind..."
"Well, then, yes, of course, go on." The professor, sensing now a touch of hysteria in Nathan's voice, encouraged him. He removed a bottle of sherry and two glasses from the back of one of the filing cabinets that lined his office.
Nathan leaned back in the deep leather chair and paused for a full minute. Then he began in a quiet voice, "I know this will probably sound stupid, maybe even insane, but what I am about to tell you is true. Every bit. I swear it." Nathan paused again for a moment, then continued nervously. "You remember that when I first came here as a graduate student my main interest was in American Indians. It was only after I met you that I changed my interest to Melanesia. Well...anyway, the second year I was here I decided to go...on a vision quest. You know, go off by myself and fast and all that to see if I could get a vision. A guardian spirit. I realize this sounds pretty stupid but I was a true anthropological romantic in those days. I wanted to see if it would work. It seemed to me that if American Indians had sought visions for generation after generation there must be something to it." Nathan reached for his sherry and, satisfied that Professor Loftus was listening, continued.
"So I went off into the mountains. I went exactly to the place I took Lorraine."
The professor, deducing that Lorraine must have been the girl who was killed, nodded at Nathan to continue.
"I knew of this place up in the mountains," Nathan began again. "Even though it's not very far from L.A. it's like being at the end of the earth. You can go up there for days and not see another person. I drove there and parked on the side of the road. It's a really bad road, just dirt and rocks. Hardly anyone ever goes there, or even knows about it for that matter. I left everything in the car except the shorts I was wearing and went off to find a place to stay. I followed some sort of animal trail, a deer trail I guess, until I came to a small waterfall. There was a nice place there, well hidden and sheltered from the wind. I decided to stay there as long as it would take. I had no food, nothing, not even a knife. I thought that if I stayed there long enough I would get a vision. And then, believe it or not, I did." Nathan began to speak faster.
"Oh, It didn't come right away. I spent five days and nights there before it finally came to me. I slept, or tried to anyway, on a huge flat boulder near the waterfall. I didn't eat anything the whole time except a little bit of that stuff they call miner's lettuce. I chewed on some bark sometimes and I drank water from the stream. During the day I meditated and at night I deliberately tried to dream. The nights were cold. I was hungry and utterly miserable. But I didn't give up. I kept on trying. Then, on the fifth night I had the vision. It was nothing like I had imagined it would be. Nothing at all. It came to me in the form of a beautiful woman. The most beautiful and sensuous creature I've ever seen. I couldn't tell what nationality she was, not even her race. But she was tall and willowy with tawny hair and the most incredible luminescent eyes. Her eyes were like the eyes of an animal when you see them at night." Nathan paused and then continued, speaking more rapidly.
"It happened so fast! All of the sudden she was just there! Right by my side. There was no warning, nothing. She just appeared. She snuggled up against me and I didn't feel cold anymore. She was soft and warm." Nathan paused, looked at the Professor, then shouted, "It's true! Every bit! I swear every word is true!"
"Incredible," the Professor remarked calmly. "But it doesn't sound that unusual. It could have been a dream, or even an hallucination. Hallucinations occur easily under those circumstances."
"Hallucination? A dream? Perhaps. But it was real to me. As real as my being here now. In fact, even more real. But there's more...I don't know how long I actually spent there. It seemed like forever. We wandered in the forest, enjoying the solitude and each other, sleeping close together wherever we found ourselves...and yes, even making love. We never seemed to be hungry or tired. There was a strange, surrealistic quality to it. At times we floated effortlessly over the ground, just above the trees. The trees appeared to glow, especially the black oaks. In the morning when the sun first came up and filtered down through the leaves it was like being in heaven. Or at least what I've always pictured heaven to be like. Not that I ever believed there was such a place. We wandered over the mountains with thoughts only for each other. She was so beautiful. Her name, she told me, was Llona."
Nathan paused once again, staring out of the office window into the twilight. "One of the strangest things about it," he began again thoughtfully, "is that I never felt I was in love with her. I guess that loving her was irrelevant as what I felt was so much more intense. It was as if she was really part of me. She told me she would look after me always and help me whenever I needed her. She said I had only to believe in her and she would always come to me. She taught me what to do to summon her and made me practice over and over again so I would never forget. And she made me swear that I would never forget her."
"But Nathan," the professor interrupted, "it doesn't strike me as unusual that you would have had such a dream, or whatever it was. Out there alone, exhausted and hungry and cold and all. Why do you think it was a vision?"
"Please. Wait. Let me finish." Nathan looked up at the professor who was now seated on his desk looking down at him with obvious concern. "After this happened to me I was terrified. I don't even remember how I got back to my car. I don't remember driving home. A few days later, after I had rested and eaten and recovered somewhat, I began to doubt my sanity. I never told anyone. Not a soul. I was afraid to go back there so I never did...that is, until now. I went there with Lorraine. I never tried to summon Llona. Never! It was much too frightening an experience. I studied for my exams. You helped me get the grant for the work in New Guinea. I was there for almost two years as you know. Then, when I returned to write my dissertation, I couldn't afford to live in L.A., so I went to Berkeley where a friend let me stay with him. It was only after I finished and you helped me get the job here that I returned. I hadn't forgotten the experience. I could never forget it, but it was sufficiently past that I felt no fear of going back. It was, after all, four years later."
"But you surely realized by then that it had to have been just a dream or an hallucination?"
"You keep insisting that's what it was," Nathan protested. "But I tell you it wasn't like that at all! It was real! It's true! I know it, and I'll prove it to you!"
"Nathan, Nathan," Professor Loftus said gently, "how could you ever prove such a thing? You're just upset. Take it easy. Here, have some more sherry." As the professor poured, Nathan began to speak faster.
"You see. Llona wasn't a woman at all! She disappeared! No! No! That's not right. She didn't really disappear. She was replaced. By a lioness! That's why I was so afraid. Don't you see? Don't you see? You know that spirits can take on different shapes. They can appear in whatever guise they wish. One moment it was Llona and the next the lioness. Oh, it was still her all right, the same creature. She was right there next to me where Llona had been. She licked my face and rubbed up against me. She walked back and forth against my legs and then, later, she lay there with her head in my lap. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind about this."
Professor Loftus began to think that perhaps Nathan really was insane but, not knowing what to say, simply waited.
"Don’t you see? Don't you understand? Lorraine wasn't killed by accident! No. She was murdered!"
"You mean you think the lion that killed your friend was the same lion?"
"Of course it was. What else could it have been? She was there! I saw her!"
"You actually saw the lion? But no, even if you had seen one how could you have known it was the same one? Besides, why would the lion want to kill your friend? Nathan, I'm sorry, but perhaps you ought to get some help. See a doctor."
"I tell you I saw her! She was there just as sure as you are here!"
"Did you tell the Sheriff?"
"How could I tell the Sheriff? Don't you understand? It was not the lion I saw. It was Llona!"

Thursday, December 01, 2005


Donald Rumsfeld, the senile old goat who has pretended to be Secretary of Defense for the last few years, claims to have now had an epiphany. This profound experience suggested to him that we should no longer refer to the Iraqi opposition as insurgents because somehow that gives them more credit than they deserve. He suggests that we now call them (I think I have this right) "enemies of the legitimate government of Iraq" (elgis?). Richard Clark appeared on the Colbert Report this evening and this topic came up. Clark suggested that when the elgis are defeated we will know that we have won the gwat (global war on terror). I guess when this happens we will have won the "complete victory" Bush insists we must have, and this will have been achieved by "staying the course" and thus "spreading democracy" throughout the Middle East, that is apparently the "noble cause" upon which we are embarked, and which will come about because of our "strategy for victory" which in turn is based upon the same meaningless bullshit Bush has been touting from the very beginning.

It seems not to have occurred to anyone in office that Donald Rumsfeld is the saddest excuse for a Secretary of Defense we have probably ever had and should have been replaced years ago. He has never done anything but babble on endlessly about what he doesn't know he thinks we ought to not know, but as we do not know it, we can't go on thinking that somehow we do know it because not knowing it is not quite the same as knowing that we don't know it, and etc., etc. But I'm really pleased he had this epiphany because this has settled the insurgency problem for good. How this totally incompetent, pompous, ridiculous, and completealy dishonest jerk gets away with continuing in office would be a mystery if we didn't know who was President. Well, I guess you just have to go to "war" with the Secretary of Defense you have, not the Secretary of Defense you might want.

The rumor is out now that Barbara Bush, as you know is the President's mother, is very upset that the American people have taken to being very critical of her boy. She attributes this to Cheney, Rumsfeld, and others because of course it couldn't be little Georgie's fault. I guess the only one she doesn't fault is Karen whats-her-face who, according to Condi Rice, gives really good sermons. I love it! Stay tuned.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Depends upon what "it" is

Well...the Bubble Boy gave his set Iraqi speech for the umpteenth time to another military audience. He doesn't dare speak to a general audience because someone might actually ask him a question he can't answer. One of those questions, I guess, is what "it" is? That is, in today's speech he apparently said that once we attain "complete victory" it will be "worth it" (I have to confess that I did not actually listen to his speech, I pick up what he apparently said by listening to reviews of what he said. If I were to actually listen to him, and have to watch him, I would almost surely become so overtaken by rage as to have a heart attack). What does he mean by this? What would complete victory entail? Is complete victory even possible against terrorists (of course not). Try to imagine what from his point of view victory in Iraq might mean. I guess it would mean that we would have successfully installed a puppet government that would do our bidding, let us control their oil, and otherwise cooperate completely with our desires in the area. Apparently he would consider this the spreading of democracy to the Middle East. Of course he doesn't care if it's a democracy or not, as long as we control their "government" (and their resources). Thus whoever is elected in Iraq has to be "our" man, otherwise I guess it would not be worth it? There is no doubt the election will be fixed and apparently we have our candidate in mind. If we lose what happens? If we win what happens? What happens in either case is that we will withdraw some troops, retain some troops, keep some troops in other parts of the Middle East, and make sure that things go our way. No one, absolutely no one, is suggesting that we will not maintain a military presence in that part of the world. While I admire Barbara Boxer, when she suggests we proclaim we will not maintain a permanent presence, I don't know if she is being serious or just naive.

How is it that everyone now is speaking about about either getting out of or staying in Iraq but no one ever mentions oil? Indeed, Hillary apparently sent out an email discussing what was wrong and needed to be done in the our country without even mentioning Iraq, let alone oil. Kerry has finally flunked out as a public speaker. Lieberman continues to shill for the President and Republicans, grandpa Rumsfeld got put in his place over torture, Spector made a fool of himself over football, and the Republican idiocy just continues.

Our senior Senator, Craig (who apparently believes we are still going to find WMD's) inserted a rider in some bill that would eliminate money for the Fish Passage Center. He claims they are biased. As it is a small group, with a small budget, and basically does nothing but count the number of salmon in the system, it is somewhat difficult to see where they might be biased (he thinks they don't know how to count right?) Actually it is much simpler than that. He represents the energy industry and they do not like having the fish counted because it might actually prove that something more needs to be done to save the salmon. Senator Craig should stick to telling us about how bad New Orleans is (as he knows even less about that than anything else). Senator Craig is an idiot and an embarrassment to the State of Idaho (but of course most Idahoans think he is wonderful).

Tuesday, November 29, 2005


Watch 'n Wait: I know of people in Arizona who go out in the desert and shoot machine guns for "therapy." In The High Valley by Kenneth E. Read he describes a New Guinea leader who goes out alone and shoots a single arrow into nowhere, presumably for the same reason. Please let me know what your friend thinks the "purpose" is. If he knows he should share it with the rest of us.

I read one article today in which Bush says that when it comes to exiting Iraq he is going to listen to his generals and no one else. Then there was another article which claims that he refuses to listen to anyone, including his generals, if they say something he doesn't want to hear. Apparently the generals are afraid to say anything he doesn't want to hear as it might well be detrimental to their careers. As becoming a general is a very political thing as well as military this is understandable. This is what makes Murtha's comments so powerful - he has the ear of the generals and is obviously transmitting their beliefs and not simply his own. What they fear to say he can say for them, obviously very threatending to Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld/Rice,/et al. If I had to choose between Bush's claim that he listens to his generals and the claim that he refuses to listen to anyone who tells him anything he doesn't want to hear, I would certainly opt for the latter.

I would never compare Bush to Hitler. After all, Hitler was very successful, at least until the bitter end. Bush has consistently, predictably, invariably, overwhelmingly, single-mindedly, incompetently, almost compulsively been not successful. What they do seem to share in common, when the end is near, is the absolute refusal to accept any advice from people with an actual grasp of reality, people who could actually help them, those who want to help but are dismissed out of hand because they have to say what the Fuehrer/King/President doesn't want to hear. It is said that those around the President are terrified because no one can get through to him. He apparently is on a religious mission, knows that he has the absolute truth as well as the blessing of God, and is not going to give up no matter what. If this is true it is terrifying even beyond belief. And if he doesn't come around and drastically change course soon we will know that it is, unhappily, the truth. Also, if this is true, George W. Bush is not fit to be President of the United States.

Do not ask for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for all of us unless something happens soon.

Monday, November 28, 2005

A "nefarious bastard?"

Colonel Wilkerson, Colin Powell's chief of staff for many years, has said that Cheney must have believed Iraq was a training ground for terrorists or, if not, must have been "a moron, an idiot or a nefarious bastard." I see no reason why Cheney should not be seen as all three, in addition to being a pathological liar and an all around disgusting human being. Personally, I believe he is the personification of evil.

Now Duke Cunningham, Republican of California, has pleaded guilty to taking bribes in return for corporate favors. Ney will doutless be next in spite of his lawyer's attempt to portray as a poor innocent patsy. And of course we still have DeLay and Frist on the griddle, to say nothing of Karl Rove (actually, there are so many others it is impossible to keep score).

McClellan seems to have disappeared for the past 19 days; someone has suggested into the arms of Gannon/Guckert (anyone remember him?). Odds are he is about to be replaced (if, indeed, they can find anyone foolish enough to take on such a job). Apparently some have suggested to Bush that he should fire Rumsfeld; but Bush, being Bush, refused to do so as it would be seen as an admission of failure which, of course, he could never admit.

Judith Miller seems to have had her 15 minutes of fame. Bob Woodward is being exposed for the obsequious court stenographr he has become, the MSM continues to lose out to the Internet (and deservedly so), it is too late (hopefully) for Bush to bomb al-Jazeera, and we continue to wait for the complete collapse of the Bush/Cheney fiasco. It is far better than any three ring circus but unfortunately, not entertaining.

My father told me: "when you get a big man down, don't let him up." Good advice for the present case.