Revised January 27, 2004Finally over the weekend I saw the video footage of Dean's legendary yell, the thing that has been touted endlessly by the corporate fraud machine as the reason Dean is now finished, an act that was so foul the man should never be able to hold his head up in public again. This is all according to the corporate media, the same ones who said Dean completely blew everything when he said that the U.S. was not one bit safer after Saddam Hussein, which is demonstrably true. So yeah, there is plenty of reason to be suspicious of any political statements coming from the same folks who brought you Election Fraud 2000 and its great sequel Election Fraud 2002.
But the stuff is so pervasive, you see these messages trumpeted so relentlessly by this whole gigantic herd of media cows, it's hard not to take it seriously sometimes, just a little tiny bit. What was this horrendous thing that Dean did that would end his political career (and incidentally the hopes of millions of Bush left-behinds who came out for Dean because he expressed exactly what was enraging them)?
So I finally put the TV on over the weekend and saw the footage, which has probably been played almost as much that World Trade Center snuff film. I saw it. And my reaction, and the reaction of others with me was -- That's it? That's what all this hullaballoo is about?
If that's all the corporate media can come up with for why suddenly John Kerry is the "frontrunner," who came from behind with chilling momentum -- allegedly -- based on nothing. He is still the same man who voted to give Bush the authorization to do anything he wanted in Iraq based on information that he could well have discovered was not reliable, but didn't. He still is the member of Skull & Bones, the same Yale secret club that Bush was a member of. He says some good things and has a history that is a great contrast to that of George W. Bush is practically every particular. But when the chips were down, he abdicated his responsibility to challenge the rush to an unnecessary, in fact fraudulent war.
And Dean -- who had no political office from which to exercise the kind of political power that Kerry and many other senators had but threw it away -- became a spokesman for the majority of common sense Americans who knew that war was a horrible catastrophe about to be created, and who know see that catastrophe unfolding. Those who opposed the war have proven to be right. Still, the corporate media mainstream refuses to deal with the outright criminal aspects of the invasion of Iraq and its aftermath, but goes berserk because Dean yelled the way I want to yell when I think of America getting Bush and all the spineless senators that didn't have the guts to stand up to him out of government.
The senators who voted for Bush's war, and acted offended when Dean said the capture of Saddam didn't make Americans safter, can now take over the presidency and say, "Well, we shouldn't have come in here, but I didn't put us here, so you can't blame me. But now that we're in here, we can't just leave. We're going to follow through on the outrageous Bush plan. That means we are going to continue forcing the deaths of many Americans, Iraqis, Italians, British, Japanese, U.N. workers, international relief organizations -- et cetera -- in order to maintain an illegal occupation and seize Iraq's the oil and territory to enhance our power as the ruler of the New World Order.
It's obvious that there is a concerted effort by the mainstream, establishment media to plant the notion in people's minds that suddenly this grassroots movement that mushroomed around Dean because he voices the aspirations of a majority of rank and file Americans is suddenly dead. Based on what? Well nothing really, so how about that shout the other night?
It wasn't just that particular incident, it's the portrayal of a number of innocuous moments of no significance as a great series of blunders that has derailed what once looked like a mighty locomotive -- but obviously was just a lot of hot air. This is the myth the corporate media is presently weaving and hoping will become fact.
Dean is now portrayed by the media as possibly pathologically dangerous to his neighborhood. Supposed news reporting refers to his Yell in medical terms that actually refer to disease. This is a serious effort of the corporate media to reclaim the power that has been momentarily knocked off balance a bit by an organized grassroots movement to bring power back to the people. It's not about Howard Dean. It's about an organized movement of the people themselves, which is the only way this catastrophe of the Bush administration is going to be ended. And the Bush administration is likewise not about George W. Bush but about a corporate oligarchy, which is now desperately trying to put down an uprising against its play for global domination. The uprising within its borders is the one kind of uprising that it knows can kill it, and which it has not yet quite put under total control, in spite of obvious efforts to do so.
It is not Dean versus Kerry, or even Dean versus Bush. It is the corporate oligarchy versus a budding democracy movement. Kerry is not Dean. Kerry represents some enduring values of liberal democracy that are in wide contrast to Bush. But the toppling of Dean is the significant one because he represents power outside of the establishment, the organization and focus of the population in mobilization for its own interests as a majority as opposed to the control of the government by a small corporate elite, as is now the case. (See the New York Times' Thomas Friedman to see how that establishment view is expressed by the establishment itself, as Friedman put it, "Democrats who voted for the Iraq war, and conveyed "a toughness and resolve to face down America's enemies," but who believe the Bush team has mismanaged the project.")
Sooner or later people will realize that the corporate media that was so instrumental in installing an unelected corporate stooge as president is not to be believed in its comments on Howard Dean, the one true opposition voice that has managed to break through their line of defenses and get somewhere near exercising real power as a voice for the majority.
Don't be deceived. Don't believe what you read. Nothing of substance has changed to make Dean's incredible momentum disappear. There is a widespread perception that he's suddenly out of the game, but that is only the enormous spin the corporate media have put on the Iowa caucuses in the one week they have to do this before the New Hampshire primary.
If memory serves me, George Bush beat Ronald Reagan in the 1980 primary season. At that time the Bush team also tried to play "the big Mo", as Bush called it, as though Iowa created momentum that would roll into New Hampshire. But there was no momentum generated from Iowa. It never happens. They are too completely different kinds of electoral procedures. Iowa tends to show more of a party insider's view of what is desired.
George W. Bush also lost New Hampshire after winning in Iowa, again representing the party insiders (Bush), versus a rebellion against the prevailing order (McCain). After New Hampshire, Bush's candidacy was on the line. If McCain could have kept the momentum of New Hampshire -- which does provide some momentum -- he might have won the nomination. So the Bush-Rove corporate criminal team launched a massive smear campaign in South Carolina, labeling McCain with practically every kind of shady, aberrant or unpopular behavior. And McCain's candidacy was destroyed.
If the corporate media succeed in pulling off their smear campaign against Dean and he loses New Hampshire, it may effectively end his candidacy and the insurgent democratic movement may be left with only a choice between two Yale Skull & Bonesmen who supported the oligarchy's criminal conquest of Iraq.
I've seen a poll or two, and they are saying that the spin of the media about Kerry overtaking Dean is going to become a reality. Maybe so. But I have a suspicion we may find that "the big Mo'" isn't there this time either. Iowa does not create momentum. It has little influence on the New Hampshirese, God bless 'em.
The New Hampshire primary is a unique institution. It is one of the most dramatic democratic procedures in modern presidential politics. It is one of the very few times that popular opinion can be expressed in a political game that has largely been taken over by big money. In New Hampshire, a candidate can get out there and talk to a significant part of the population. They don't have to depend totally on media for their information.
So unless people are really letting the media turn their heads around, there is every reason to think the anti-Bush/corporate oligarchy movement will continue to build strength, and as an expression of that Dean may yet take New Hampshire as polls indicated a few weeks ago.
Back in the U.S.A after a few days away is always strange, the reimmersion into the pit of American media culture. But now there is an alternative emerging. The political organization that is now growing above ground began in alternative media on the Internet. And it remains a key to the future of that movement.
I liked the yell. I identified with it. That's the kind of president we need. One who can really yell, who expresses the will of the people.
As my friend DKLind says: "Hell with it. Shout, people!"
Dean's Site Donate to Dean "Dennis Kucinich and the Question" truthout.org "How Many Degrees of Separation Between Bush and the People, Between Truth and Lies?" by Linda O'Brien, Commondreams. The New York Times' best columnist Paul Krugman, warns against dysfunctional voting machines.
January 27, 2004
David Kay demands an explanation as to why intelligence was so far off. Yahoo News Gail Sheehy on FBI whistleblowers coming forward. The Observer Barbra Streisand posted a good summary of Bush's catastrophic presidency. Barbrastreisand.com Senate Majority and Bush puppet Frist's computer was seized by authorities because of suspicion of illegal activity by one of Frist's aids. Know News Tony Blair's wife says Bush stole the election. According to the Times of India, "Although Tony Blair was pragmatic about Bush's victory, Mrs Blair was far less sanguine about the Supreme Court decision that gave him the keys to the White House. She believed Al Gore had been 'robbed' of the presidency and was hostile to the idea of her husband 'cosying' up to the new President." Stress epidemic cuts down many US soldiers in Iraq. Observer Prosecutors say Limbaugh committed 10 felonies. Sun Sentinel 50 lies that took Britain to war. Independent Robert S. McNamara, the Secretary of Defense under Lyndon Johnson who conducted a massive blunder in Vietnam came out in the '90s to admit his mistakes and try to share his lessons with history. ("we were wrong, terribly wrong. We owe it to future generations to explain why.") Now in an interview in the Globe & Mail he's speaking in plain terms against the invasion and occupation of Iraq. McNamara is also featured in the documentary film "The Fog of War". John McCain on Bush's big spending spree, and more. A federal judge has ruled part of the Patriot Act unconstitutional. Right on! Washington Post. "Did it ever occur to you that when President Bush says, "Money is the lifeblood of terrorist operations," he's talking about your money -- and every other American's money? Just about everyone with a 401(k) pension plan or mutual fund has money invested in companies that are doing business in so-called rogue states." Companies that have done business with "rogue states" include Halliburton, Conoco-Phillips and General Electric. CBS 60 Minutes Arundhati Roy on the New American Century: "To applaud the US Army's capture of Saddam Hussein, and therefore in retrospect justify its invasion and occupation of Iraq, is like deifying Jack the Ripper for disemboweling the Boston Strangler. And that after a quarter-century partnership in which the Ripping and Strangling was a joint enterprise... So if we are against imperialism, shall we agree that we are against the US occupation and that we believe the United States must withdraw from Iraq and pay reparations to the Iraqi people for the damage that the war has inflicted?... How do we begin to mount our resistance? ... We have to become the global resistance to the occupation. Our resistance has to begin with a refusal to accept the legitimacy of the US occupation of Iraq. It means acting to make it materially impossible for Empire to achieve its aims. It means soldiers should refuse to fight, reservists should refuse to serve, workers should refuse to load ships and aircraft with weapons. It certainly means that in countries like India and Pakistan we must block the US government's plans to have Indian and Pakistani soldiers sent to Iraq to clean up after them."
January 28, 2004
The Left Bone and the Right BoneSo Kerry won New Hampshire by a decisive margin. It looks like the electorate has spoken.
The corporate media herd did its job of hammering Dean and planted the image of him as a loser in the mind of the media watchers. They made huge issues out of absolutely nothing. They invented them from scratch, improvised them out of nothing.
Dean yelled. Oh my God! What a catastrophe. Diane Sawyer subjected him to her finely honed system of slow death by slicing. She asked Dean's wife, has he ever lost his temper? Ever? Even one little time? Sawyer rang the thing dry, pounded on it like a hammer on an anvil The media assault was a hypnotic, deafening, overpowering roar. And it was a blitzkrieg. They hung back for a while, then struck with full firepower just as the electorate was beginning to open its weary eyes to the election season. That tiny margin of hope allotted to the unrich.
It seems that the corporate media propaganda system did its job successfully and destroyed Dean's candidacy. Again, Dean's candidacy was not based on Dean. Dean the man is only marginally relevant to the whole dialogue, just as the absurd diatribes the media try to pass off as objective news coverage have no relevance to the political realities underlying the election.
I repeat myself, but Dean was the candidate who became a "frontrunner" because his grassroots support was undeniably the most powerful political force outside of the Bush mob. He was not significant because he was a doctor from Vermont married to another doctor from Vermont who sometimes may lose his temper -- God forbid! An antiwar president who gets pissed off!
The melodramas created by the so-called news media are too ludicrous to even discuss seriously. They talk about anything but the real issues. Kerry's hair was at one time a big topic of discussion among so-called news anchors. That was before the Dean yell, which apparently was such an earthshattering issue that it made discussion of anything else irrelevant.
Okay, so they did it and it worked. They launched their bombardment on Dean. They didn't surprise Dean -- he was well aware of what was going on -- but they caught the poor, battered citizens by surprise. Apparently many people still don't realize who is screwing them. They still think they are being told the truth by politicians and the mass media. They are struggling so hard to keep their heads above water, they don't have the energy to take the initiative to inform themselves about things they do not even realize are problems, and are closely related to why they have to struggle so hard to stay afloat, why jobs are scarce, money is scarce and most everyone is stressed out.
So Kerry -- sure, he has many good qualities and assets to bring into the contest against Bush. On a scorecard, he obliterates Bush in practically any way you could size up two candidates for president. He has a great deal of experience in government. He's maintained positions that are a breath of life in contrast to the death focused policies of the Bush administration. He has stated positions that oppose Bush in fundamental Republican-Democrat lines of battle. Perhaps the "electability" element -- distasteful as I find the concept in popular usage -- has some weight. When it gets down to it, this ugly game -- at which the sleaziest group of gangsters around have been lately winning nearly every round of -- is going to be conducted according to deeply ingrained rules of this society. It's true that the social mores are determined in large measure by an elite who have the powers of molding the culture through the most sophisticated media system ever devised. But this is the world in which we live and it's not likely to veer completely off its traditional track in this next eight months or so.
So matching up these two candidates -- who are chosen in a rather random manner by the corporate elite that essentially owns the country -- will take place along prescribed limits, and within that system Kerry has many advantages that Dean doesn't have.
Kerry has military credibility, and that is a major consideration in a time when a large segment of the country is very freaked out about the threat of terrorism that is obviously real and lethal, but which they have almost no understanding of because none of the underlying issues have ever been discussed on their supposed news stations.
The voters, I'm afraid, will not compromise on the military side. They need a guy with serious military credibility. Bush is somehow given this image of military credibility, which is an illusion based on nothing about his actual military history. It was just bestowed on him by a generous media that never questioned much of anything about him.
But bogus as it all is, including the exaggerated theater about the threats of Arabs who inhabit lands the U.S. needs, this country has now put itself in real jeopardy against terrorists because of its aggression toward Arabs who have done nothing to the United States. A sense of anger that can only be called righteous has risen in much of the world, not just the Arab world. The military threat is real even if most of the trouble is created by that lover of war George W. Bush. So the military credibility will figure big when the scorecard is out.
Kerry's record as a leader of Vietnam Veterans against the War gives him some credibility on both the peacemaking and the military sides of the war-antiwar axis. His record as a senator for four six-year terms is in massive contrast to Bush's one and a half four-year terms as governor of Texas. Kerry is much smarter, more articulate, manifestly tougher and holds political positions that are relatively humane and rational compared to the troglodytes now in charge.
But some things do not sit well with me. It may be too much to hope that Kerry would address them head on with no tough journalists getting on the air with any embarassing questions, but I would like to see Kerry address the issue of Skull & Bones. Why should that be something neither candidate -- both Bonesmen -- are ever asked to discuss? We have to hear Diane Sawyer whining about Dean losing his temper, but no one ever asked a Bonesman to comment on his membership and what it means and whether it would ever cause a conflict of interest or loyalty. Being a Roman Catholic was considered a big black mark when Kennedy ran for president. But what is with this Skull and Bones thing?
I find it extremely unsettling that it is coming down to a choice between Skull & Bones Left and Skull and Bones Right. There is something terribly wrong feeling about that. And I think the issue should be addressed. It is -- by definition -- not a partisan issue, since both sides belong.
I would also like Kerry to make his position on the war clearer and not harbor himself in a place where he can try to please everyone. Can he blame his earlier support of the war only on his receiving bogus information from the White House. The senators surely did receive bogus information, but they didn't have to take it unquestioningly. It was their obligation as part of their well-paid jobs to check out the information that is being used to push the country into war. Kerry dropped the ball on that, almost by his own admission since he now says the war is wrong. This is not encouraging.
Kerry surely wants the votes of both those who believe the war was wrong and those, like Tom Friedman of the NYTimes, who justified the war in some contortionist fashion by invoking the necessity of war against Islamic militants. A war based on lies against a country who had committed no wrong against the U.S. was wrong, unjustified. It has nothing to do with a war against militants or terrorists.
The American occupation of Iraq should not stand. The American people need to realize that and take action. It is illegal and the wrong needs to be righted as expediently and responsibly as possible. The U.S. should renounce all claim to Iraqi oil or territory, turn over the country to a U.N. sponsored plan of Iraqis reclaiming their own country and sovereignty. That is the only acceptable position of a president of the United States. That is the only way the U.S. can reclaim its legitimacy in the world community. It is now like a criminal that has not been apprehended.
January 29, 2004
The future of British journalism is very bleak, says Greg Palast, but "the future for fake and farcical war propaganda is quite bright indeed." After a British judge cleared Blair and cracked his whip at the BBC, which was quickly brought into a posture of submission. The king of Orwellian lying now claims that U.N. weapons inspectors were not allowed into Iraq before the war. "When asked about the issue yesterday, White House spokesman Scott McClellan claimed the entire WMD issue was unimportant because the Bush Administration had never said Iraq was a threat. He said, 'the media have chosen to use the word "imminent"' to describe the Iraqi 'threat' - not the Bush Administration'" Misleader.org Dean got Gored. "No other candidates received a tiny fraction of the harsh scrutiny Dean did. 'They only do this to one candidate at a time,' says Rosenstiel. But the scrutiny is mostly arbitrary, petty, irrelevant, misdirected. In contrast, George Bush has received a virtual blanket pass for 3 years of lies, blunders, stupidity, and war." Mediachannel.org. A Republican who wrote "I have faith in President Bush" in September '02 now says "I formally disavow the Republican Party as well as my past support for the Second Gulf War" and "while I never thought I'd say this, the way Bush spends -- and spends, and spends -- I'm beginning to miss Bill Clinton" mensnewsdaily.com A great piece from before Christmas: Bush Fatigue: "At the risk of redundancy, America is a victim of abuse. It started with the tainted election of 2000 that left deep scars that nobody seems to want to admit are still with us. Then there was 9/11, a brutal blow to our very sense of being. And from then on, it has been day in and day out abuse of powers in Washington, D.C., powers that were earned only by dint of a vote of a partisan Supreme Court." Visit The 9/11 Visibility Project. "Fiction review: State of the Union" by Gene Collier. Mark Fiore's "State of the Union Updater". Look out. Here it comes. Just as New York governor Pataki pardons a long-dead Lenny Bruce, who was hounded to death by obscenity busts, now obscenity busts come back. (See AOL News.) Paraphrasing Lenny Bruce, why doesn't the Legion of Decency say it's illegal to kill innocent Iraqis? Because those people are more interested in death than in life. It's not that I care for Howard Stern's style of entertainment, but I can always turn it off. What is scary is when you give government the power to crack down on people for using "indecent" language, then it can be used to control political dissent, too. The rumble is rising. Newspaper editorials are questioning Bush's lies about the war. Editor & Publisher. Newspaper owners contribute to Republicans by an overwhelming majority. Editor & Publisher. FAIR on Dennis Miller's conflicts of interest. What's Bush grinning about? Sunspot Wrestler Al Franken shows his stuff. NY Post. Setting the record straight on the deserter. Village Voice. According to the Denver Post, "Chris Kuhner tries to choke back a sob as he talks about American troops in Iraq. 'If the president really knew what war's like, he wouldn't taunt our enemies with 'bring it on,"' the 55-year-old Vietnam veteran said. 'People die. People get hurt. They bleed. They break. And even if they come home in one piece, their lives are changed forever.'"
January 30, 2004
Blumenthall. In full voice against Bush. "For the first time, the United States is hearing sustained criticism of its president and, though the Democratic presidential primaries have been going less than two weeks, the effect has been immediate. Bush was already rattled and preoccupied with his suddenly full-throated opposition even before the Iowa vote. He scheduled his state of the union address to follow it by a day, and it was the most poorly rated in modern times. By last weekend, his approval had fallen below 50% in a Newsweek poll and he was three points behind Senator John Kerry, the new Democratic frontrunner." Guardian Rove won't be able to knock out Kerry like Atwater knocked out Dukakis. Wash Post Party concerns about Kerry. New York Times Kerry-Skull & Bones Business Week -- "On the surface, Bush, Kerry -- and for that matter Howard Dean -- seem cut from the same bolt of Brooks Brothers cloth. All three are Eastern patricians (despite Bush's Texas twang and Alamo machismo), born wealthy or at least well-to-do. All three went to tony New England prep schools -- Bush to Andover, Kerry to St. Paul's, and Dean to St. George's. All three graduated from Yale, where Bush (natch) and Kerry were tapped for the elite Skull & Bones society. And despite Bush's wildcatting in the Texas oil fields and Kerry's attempts to get real with working-class constituents in Boston, neither seems quite able to shake a certain to-the-manor-born attitude. What really sets Kerry apart from Bush and Dean is Vietnam. Kerry went to war. Bush and Dean stayed home. While Lieutenant Kerry of the U.S. Navy was running a gunboat on the Mekong Delta, Lieutenant Bush of the Texas Air National Guard was pulling up for weekend duty in his sports car, and ski bum Dean, rejected from the military because of a back ailment, was testing the slopes of Colorado. Kerry came home a hero who saw the folly of the war and, as a leader of the Vietnam Veterans, worked to end it. Bush and Dean were busy waiting for the bartender to yell 'last call'." Business Week But there is a fact about Kerry's past that brings him closer to Bush than any of the other candidate Both Bush and Kerry are members of a secretive society dating back to their respective days at Yale University - Skull and Bones. This fact has not been widely reported but when Kerry's campaign spokesperson was asked about it, she said, "John Kerry has absolutely nothing to say on that subject. Sorry." "ALEXANDRA ROBBINS: Yeah. I actually want to back way up and talk about, at least as mention exactly what Skull and Bones is, because while some people on the East Coast have heard about the society, other people across the country have no idea that we are looking right now if the polls are correct, at what would be the first Skull and Bones versus Skull and Bones presidential election. That's pretty weird. Skull and Bones is America's most powerful secret society. It's based at Yale, where it's headquartered in a building called the Tomb, and Skull and Bones has included among its members, presidents, including presidents George W. Bush and his father, as well as William Howard Taft, Supreme Court Chief Justices, C.I.A. officials, cabinet members, congressmen and senators. What makes it so staggering that we could have a Skull and Bones versus Skull and Bones, Kerry versus Bush election is that this is a tiny tiny club. There are only 800 living members. Only 15 per year. It's staggering that two of them could be facing off for the presidency and so many of them have achieved positions of prominence. One of the interesting and I think disturbing things about Skull and Bones is that its purpose is to get members into positions of power and have those members hire other members into prestigious positions. This is something we have seen with George W. Bush since his ascendancy to the presidency, he has put several Bones members into prestigious positions, such as Bill Donaldson, the head of the Securities and Exchange Commission. The number two and number three guys in the Justice Department, the guy that puts out all of Bush's secrecy memos. His assistant Attorney General is a major Bonesman. Bonesman Frederick Smith was Bush's top choice for Secretary of Defense until he had to withdraw for health reasons. The general council of the Office of Homeland Security, the Secretary of Defense's representative to Europe. The list goes on and on and on. That's something that's interesting, because George W. Bush likes to feign his distance from Yale, from Bones, from Northeastern establishment elite connections, and yet he's going ahead and following Skull and Bones to the letter...
"So, according to Skull and Bones lore, and this is something that both Senator Kerry and president bush would have learned, in 322 B.C., a Greek orator died. When he died, the goddess Eulogia, the goddess, whom Skull and Bones called the goddess of eloquence, arose to the heavens and didn't happen to come back down until 1832, when she happened to take up residence in the tomb of Skull and Bones. Now Skull and Bones does everything in deference to this goddess. They have songs or they call them that sacred anthems that they sing when they are encouraged to steal things, some remarkably valuable items, supposedly, they are said to be bringing back gifts to the goddess. They begin each session in the tomb, and they meet twice weekly by unveiling a sort of a guilt shrine to Eulogia. That's the point of the society. They call themselves the Knights of Eulogia. That's where the 322 comes in....
"AMY GOODMAN: Alexandra Robbins, our guest, "Secrets of the Tomb" is her book. What about the induction ritual. ALEXANDRA ROBBINS: That's a weird one. It's sort of a cross between Harry Potter novel and a haunted house. The heart of the initiation is a ceremony that takes place in Skull and Bones' most secret room which now we know is probably called -- well, you would think it probably is, I can tell that you it definitely is called room 322. It's also called the Inner Temple. I did get a hold of the script for initiation. I lay that out in my book. But to give you a little teaser, there is somebody dressed as the devil, somebody dressed as Don Quixote, somebody who is dressed as a pope who has one foot sheathed in a monogrammed white slipper resting on a skull, and the other knights are dress as alumni or patriarchs. In part of that ceremony, the neophytes must kiss the pope's foot, drink quote, unquote, blood from the eurich, which is a skull container and the initiation ends when the initiator is shoved to his knees in front of Don Quixote as the shrieking crowd falls silence and Quixote taps the junior on the shoulder with a sword and he says, "By order of our order, I dub you the knight of Eulogia." Democracy Now
The long war of John Kerry. New Yorker. If Kerry wins the nomination, that means our choice will be limited to two members of Skull & Bones, and if either one were to actually tell us the true meaning of that, they would have to immediately kill us. Counterpunch. Here comes the draft. No Joke. The Russo for President website has a lot of good information about the draft. The "defense" department's Want ad for draft board workers. Rangel-Hollings Bill for the draft, including women. "Government Budgets $28 Million for DRAFT in 2005"
William Rivers Pitt writes that he sat around Al Franken's apartment with a flock of journalists who surrounded Kerry and grilled him on many questions. And he came out pretty well. His answer to the question why did you support the war resolution is respectable, if not totally justified.
That is, he said he did it only to get the inspectors in because that was part of the original protocol of the agreement. They were supposed to send in inspectors and exhaust all peaceful diplomatic channels before going to war. We do know in hindsight that if they had fulfilled those conditions, there never would have been a war. So Kerry justifies himself somewhat on this.
Of course the neocons didn't respect any obligations to anyone -- as always -- and went right ahead with their war, leapfrogging over all of the conditions in the agreement. So Kerry's position can be justified, more or less, to a person who is outraged by the war.
I do believe he should have gone the full length of his powers to challenge a drive to war that was transparently bogus to many people, and should have been to him. I don't quite let him off on playing dumb about it. He should have challenged the administration much more vigorously.
But compromise is inevitable in politics. His performance in the "run up to the war" was a failure, but it's forgivable if his commitment to ending the war and withdrawing all U.S. claim to Iraq now is strong.
I'm not completely convinced about Kerry's commitment to ending the neocon agenda -- letting go of any claim to the oil and to give up making Iraq a U.S. base. But I'm willing to be convinced.
Kerry has to provide an alternative vision that is clear in its contrast to Bush. Dean has done that, and that is the source of his success.
Kerry has answered one of my grave misgivings about him, not impressively, but sufficiently for compromise. Now what about Skull & Bones? Why can't we talk about it. Secret societies are fine for school playgrounds, but it may be time to go beyond those clubs and those boyhood loyalties and stand up for principle. I don't think it's appropriate for a member of a secret society to be president unless he levels with the American people about it, and commits himself to not holding any allegiances over his oath of office. Obviously this applies to Bush too, but Bush has no redeeming qualities. The scariest thing about Skull & Bones is Bush.
ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE -- DIG IT
January 31, 2004
Conservative sportsmen turning against Bush -- USA Today The road to war was paved with bad intentions, says the Atlantic. "Kenneth Pollack, whose influential book The Threatening Storm: The Case for Invading Iraq (2002) swayed a number of officials to join the call for war, has now amended his stance regarding Saddam's possession of weapons of mass destruction. In 'Spies, Lies, and Weapons: What Went Wrong' (March Atlantic) he argues that Saddam most likely scaled back his weapons programs in 1996." Remind us: why did US invade Iraq? Flash film angelfire.com Philadelphia Daily News speaks out against the 9/11 coverup philly.com Bush only won 85% of the Republican vote in the NH primary. KCStar NH exit polls are warnings to Bush -- Seven in 10 independents who voted in the primary said the nation's economy is not in good shape, according to an exit poll conducted for The Associated Press and television networks by Edison Media Research and Mitofsky International. Almost nine in 10 said they were worried about the direction of the nation's economy in the next few years. Eight in 10 said the Bush tax cuts should be canceled altogether or only for the wealthy. from the hearings on 9/11, a tape of a hijacked flight attendant and evidence of autopilot Investigators believe the hijackers also may have used autopilot and a GPS global positioning system to target the Trade Center and the Pentagon. The report said the flight data recorder found buried in the rubble of the Pentagon indicated the pilot "had input autopilot instructions for a route to Reagan National Airport." Krugman: George Bush promised to bring honor and integrity back to the White House. Instead, he got rid of accountability. ... "The point is that a grave mistake was made, and America's credibility has been badly damaged - and nobody is being held accountable," says Krugman. NYTimes Eric Alterman: Think Again: 9/11 and the Bush Administration: Is Ignorance Bliss? American Progress Battle over the 9/11 commission deadline intensifies. Washington Post "America was itself to blame for the events of September 11 because the US administration was using "kid gloves" in tracking down Osama bin Laden and "other fanatics linked to Saudi Arabia", a special BBC investigation has alleged in a damning indictment of the two presidents Bush and American foreign policy." Times of India More on bush as a dry drunk. HNN.us Bush promises to restore honor and dignity to White House. The Onion Bush Orwell '04. gwbush04.com Dishonest Dubya action toy. homepage.mac.com