Bush on the Run
Links Late February '04
February 23, 2004
Nader is right! About so many things. He is right in his assessment of how Washington is under occupation by major corporations; about how the U.S. has no business in Iraq; how the money being poured into that atrocity is needed at home to provide the necessities of life for the people of America; how the money could be put into a jobs program to rebuild the country, and those jobs could not be exported to India or China.
But there is a disconnect between that understanding and his strategy for accomplishing change. His candidacy for the presidency does not help to bring about the desired change, for obvious reasons. It divides the base of opposition to the worst enemy of all the change he says he wishes to bring about, namely the Bush administration.
When Russert asked him if Gore would have gone to war against Iraq, Nader suggested that Gore would have, that Gore is a "hawk." This, once again, is the point at which his usually lucid arguments fall apart.
To say that both parties are largely controlled and limited by their corporate patrons from doing the will of the people is largely true. It does not follow, however, that they are identical, interchangeable, that what Bush would do, Gore or Kerry would also do. In too many cases it is true, but not in all.
Nader has no basis for saying Gore would have gone into Iraq. It required a massive campaign of deceit and was motivated by Bush's personal obsessions, family ties and oil interests and the whacky ideology of the neocons. Nader told Russert the "what-ifs" about whether Nader's candidacy effectively gave Bush the presidency are not valid, but his speculation that Gore would have gone into Iraq like Bush is not based on much of anything.
He's still holding onto his assertion in the 2000 campaign that it didn't matter whether Bush or Gore won, but the radical Bush administration has given a dramatic demonstration that his assertion was not true. In that campaign his response to a question about whether the Republican Supreme Court would endanger the right to abortion, Nader said if the Supreme Court struck down Roe vs Wade it would just go back to the states, as if the lives of women in Bible belt states were not a concern to him.
Poor Ralph. AOL selected a picture of him for its news page that makes him look like a deranged serial killer. I saw the broadcast, and he's no beauty, but he didn't look that bad. But he's setting himself up paradoxically to work against the things he believes in because his presidential candidacy has so little chance of doing anything more significant than helping Bush.
February 25, 2004
Arnie in New YorkI saw Arnold Schwarzenegger! He was reportedly in Washington to meet with Bush, then swung by New York for a charity event, then dropped into a California tourism event at the Essex hotel. The media went crazy over it, of course, and brought out an army of TV cameras to a trade show that has probably never seen a TV camera before. Even John Fund of the Wall Street Journal turned up.
Arnie came out for a moment and spoke about what a great state "Cullyfawnia" is, then was whisked out like a fantasy, a figment of the imagination. I stood ten feet from him. What a trip! He's a little guy. Short, very broad, with a large head and a face caked with thick, brownish makeup. And one big smile. He's the California smile machine. He's almost totally a creation of the camera. He may look strange in person, but for the cameras the full Arnold image will come across perfectly.
"Why Bush Will Win" is a wonderful glimpse through the looking glass into the fantasy world of a die-hard Bush supporter. American Daily
Another Glimpse into the Republican mind is provided by Front Page mag's "Dispelling the Left's Lies about George W. Bush", which says, for example, that Bush's service in the Champagne Unit of the Texas Air National was actually a greater service to his country than the mere two-year commitment of those who got drafted and served in Vietnam. He took on a full six-year commitment in Texas! And what's more, merely flying those obsolete F-102s, which Bush did until he was grounded in 1972 for not taking a physical, was "risking his life." Get it?
"Was Yale University senior George W. Bush a coward during the Vietnam War?," asks Front Page. "Rather than a possible two-year draft in the regular forces, Bush chose to volunteer for a six-year hitch with the Air National Guard. Where privilege might have landed him in a safe administrative position, he chose one of the riskiest jobs in the force, piloting a high-performance but old jet fighter, the Convair F-102 'Delta Dagger.' His mission during the Cold War - what is now called homeland defense - was vital: to intercept Soviet Tu-95 strategic nuclear bombers that ran regular doomsday missions up and down the Eastern seaboard threatening U.S. cities with nuclear destruction. Bush's F-102 was a dangerous machine to fly. Built in the 1950s, according to the U.S. Air Force Museum, the primitive single-engine plane, with a delta-wing design that pilots say made it tough to control, could fly at supersonic speed with an arsenal of 24 unguided rockets and six guided missiles to intercept incoming aircraft. Col. William Campenni, who served with Bush in the same squadron, wrote in a Feb. 11 letter to the Washington Times, 'Our Texas Air National Guard lost several planes right there in Houston during Lt. Bush's tenure, with fatalities. Just strapping on one of those obsolescing F-102s was risking one's life.'" One by one, in this fashion, the author "dispels the lies" about Bush.
The True Lies of George W. Bush, a Buzzflash Commentary by Jeremy Warren: "Well, yes, Bill Clinton did indeed lie to us. He lied to us about a blow-job. It sure is good that we spent nearly $100 million to find out how semen reacts on a cotton blue dress from the Gap. Of course, it turned out that he was telling the truth to us about Whitewater and filegate and travelgate and campaign finance-gate and gate-gate and more. I'm sure we could find better uses for that money today. But, Clinton certainly did lie about that hummer. Imagine that, a man lying about sex. In America no less."
Amir Ali takes Bush's State of the Union speech sentence by sentence and points out the lies. Media Monitors
An open letter to "George Bush on the run". Loyola Greyhound
The Nature of the Threat, Maureen Farrell on Buzzflash.
"What really happened to American Airlines Flights 11 and 77 on Sept 11, 2001 " sydney.indymedia.org
February 26, 2004
From Mourning to Morning in AmericaFebruary rushes to a close. Breathlessly.
Clarification: Not long ago I was writing about the Anybody But Bush movement, which I discovered in myself first and then realized that a huge amount of people, very possibly a majority, feel the same way. I am running into Republicans who have adopted pretty much the same attitude.
For example, last night at the travel trade show that Schwarzenegger showed up at, I encountered a woman from the tourism bureau of a major city, and the inevitable subjects came up about how the travel industry has been under siege for the last two years. She smiled and said, "Well, this is an election year and maybe we'll have a change."
"So you're not for Bush, I take it," I said.
She frowned and shook her head with a look of distaste and dragged out a long nooooo! "I used to be. I've always been a Republican. I'm from a Republican family. I voted for him last time, but I won't this time."
She is saying this without concern for the result of the ongoing primary system for selecting the Democratic candidate. She doesn't care who it is. She's made up her mind and says it with strong conviction. Isn't she saying anybody but Bush?
Right now the polls are saying either Kerry or Edwards would trounce Bush in Arnold's state. Arnie's committed to "delivering" it, but if he doesn't get the Diebold thing in place, he may not be able to do it.
This is a fascinating time in American politics. It's coming time for Peter to pay Paul. These lunatics in the White House thought -- and for a while demonstrated -- that they could get away with anything. Anything. There was no outrage they didn't have the audacity to commit if the opportunity were placed in front of them. The fear motive worked perfectly for them for suppressing opposition from September 11 until I'm not sure when. But it is looking less and less like it is sufficient anymore. It may well be that these people's bad deeds are finally catching up to them.
They certainly have the appearance of being desperate. They are flailing away like bears chasing flies. They don't seem to know what's hitting them. The political will of the people seemed so dormant for so long. The Bushies and followers were perfecting their methods of rigging elections -- always two steps ahead of anyone trying to apprehend them for their crimes, and keeping the power they gained illegitimately in the mean time.
With all their Stalin-style civil liberties curbs, and their attempts to add corrupt voting machines to their traditional bag of political tricks and frauds, they seemed to be sewing everything up for good. They were right on track. They already had usurped the power of the Supreme Court with Scalia, Thomas, Rhenquist and more. They continue to pack the court with thugs similarly to the way they put people in charge of regulatory commissions who are committed to dismantling them. Their consolidation of power was dazzling ... breathtaking. And their momentum seemed to continue to build as they used every ounce of power to acquire more power, to smash every iota of opposition to their autocratic agenda.
They have been demonstrating a dictatorship to us. They have been saying to us: We have established a dictatorship. We have proclaimed ultimate power. Through the obscenely misnamed Patriot Act, they have dismantled practically all our Constitutional rights. On paper, at least. Now our freedom relies only on their good will, if they choose to grant us life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. If we behave ourselves according to their rules, if we give what is required of us, then we will be left alone, more or less.
But at any time you -- or anyone -- somehow gets caught in the realm of the authorities, is somehow singled out for any of a myriad of reasons, you have essentially no rights. That is the status of civil liberties in this country at this moment. We have been presented a proposition. Not in words but in actions. They have not asked us whether we want a dictatorship. They are just establishing it. And in many ways they are communicating it to us, and they are noting our rather dull response, which they really love. They have felt that they have pretty much a free hand, and they have become more and more audacious. Their slash-and-burn attitude toward the constitution far exceeded "arrogant" -- it became flamboyant.
They were absolutely unstoppable until they invaded Iraq. They were relentless, and no matter how many millions demonstrated on January 15, 2003, as Bush was building up for his big war, nothing could have stopped it. Almost nothing on earth or in heaven could have stopped them. The invasion of Iraq was this group's raison d'etre. The Bush administration was a machine bent with Terminator-like determination to invade Iraq. It was a Bush obsession for more reasons than we'll ever be able to list. The media telegraphed the message in December 2000, even before Bush took office, with stories on CNN about "Iraq -- the Unfinished War". For Wolfowitz, Perle, Cheney, Rumsfeld, et. al., this was their Impossible Dream, step one in their plan of world conquest. No joke. They went after it with utter determination and focus.
While everyone in the world watched -- knowing they had the power, but not believing that they would have the audacity to slap the face of every principle of fairness and justice ever cultivated by humanity -- they moved ahead inexorably. The world watched: would they do it? And they did. They were determined. It was a blitzkrieg upon the world. No one was set up to oppose such outrageous actions.
But when they achieved their objective, they began to unravel. They seemed to have little left to follow it up with. And the unraveling has gone so far now it's hard to tell if there is anything anyone can do to stop it. The Bushies have their election fraud bouquet and Diebold in their hip pocket, but they may have overlooked the historical fact that democracy is not embodied in a paper document, it springs from the hearts of the people.
The U.S. has seen a very dark period in its history under Bush. It has been pushed to the very brink of totalitarianism in fact. But now the democratic spirit is rousing in the people. They are waking up, and it may be the beginning of the end for the Bush regime.
I am fully aware that they will stop at nothing. They have surprised us before, even me, who had the darkest view of the Bushes of practically anyone. Before 9/11 I was aware of their overall militaristic agenda, I knew in a general sense what they wanted to do, but I had a certain confidence in the public to continue to show resistance to those kinds of activities. But that was before 9/11.
The Iran Contra Affair was an example of a war they had to wage undercover because the public was intolerant of their military adventures, which would be virtually limitless without the restraint of the public. 9/11 provided them the justification for anything they wanted to do and they exercised that power with absolute glee. They were having a ball. They were so obviously happy about it, it would make you wonder even if there weren't countless suspicious contradictions between established civil defense procedures and what happened that day.
But whatever they had to do with that day besides that they failed to protect the country from the catastrophe, the way they have exploited it is reprehensible -- unacceptable. It has to stop. They have to be stopped. And the good thing about the situation is that as the society wakes from its political slumber, it is showing signs of having the political will to push back now against the assault on America that has pushed it into a far-right extremist country.
It is still early in the process, but I think I can make out a coalescence of political will that is a natural phenomenon, like hurricanes and earthquakes are natural phenomena, and its rise is inexorable, irrepressible. And I do believe I can now see the horizon of the Bush years.
Now back to my clarification, where I started with this diatribe. I started with the intention of making an explanation, one that is not prompted by any comment from anyone else, but prompted from within. I referred recently in a piece to a festering sore in the White House. Later it occurred to me that that may have appeared as though I was talking about Bush himself as a festering sore. I wasn't. Though I have experienced great loathing for the man at times, I would not think of him in such terms. It wasn't a personal reference.
I was referring to a phenomenon in the White House, a product of people, but not people themselves. It was a metaphor for something analogous to John Dean's description of the cancer on the presidency. We all know what he meant, and most people now would know what it means now in reference to the Bush administration. What is happening in that little system is pathogenic, but it appears that the earth's immune system may be starting to do its work to rout out the offending part.
So here's to spring, and to the dramatic change from mourning to morning in America.
Soros Interview: George Soros, Author Of "The Bubble Of American Supremacy: Correcting The Misuse Of American Power," interviewed in Buzzflash, said "Stock market bubbles don't grow out of thin air. They have a solid basis in reality -- but reality as distorted by a misconception. Under normal conditions misconceptions are self-correcting, and the markets tend toward some kind of equilibrium. Occasionally, a misconception is reinforced by a trend prevailing in reality, and that is when a boom-bust process gets under way. Eventually the gap between reality and its false interpretation becomes unsustainable, and the bubble bursts ... Now look at the ideology of American supremacy. It has a solid foundation in reality; namely, the United States is the dominant power in the world. The current government believes the United States ought to use this dominant position to impose its will on the world. That is the misconception. This approach is not what made America great. America did not arrive at its dominant position by imposing its will on the world. But the confluence of a bunch of ideologues in Washington with the September 11th attack allowed this theory to gain acceptance and to become the ideology that guided the U.S. response to the terrorist attacks." Buzzflash The growing 9/11 truth movement, a great article in the Long Island Press. A new wave of terrorists is being spawned by a wave of virulent anti-Americanism that is sweeping the world in response to Bush's aggressive, arrogant foreign policy. Republicans say the main issue of the next election will be America's security. I say, yes, that's why it's important to get Bush out. Chicago Tribune eminem sued Apple for using his song w/o his permission. New Music Express
February 27, 2004
U.S. behind Haiti coup? According to Democracy Now, "The US lawyer representing the government of Haiti charged today that the US government is directly involved in a military coup attempt against the country's democratically elected President, Jean-Bertrand Aristide. Ira Kurzban, the Miami-based attorney who has served as General Counsel to the Haitian government since 1991, said that the paramilitaries fighting to overthrow Aristide are being backed by Washington. 'I believe that this is a group that is armed by, trained by, and employed by the intelligence services of the United States,' Kurzban told the national radio and TV program Democracy Now! 'This is clearly a military operation, and it's a military coup.'" According to an article in the LA Times "Both Democratic senators characterize the Medicare law ó which creates a prescription drug benefit while giving private insurers billions of dollars to lure seniors away from the traditional program and into managed care ó as an egregious example of the power of corporate special interests in Washington. Meanwhile, the Bush administration, which had planned to cite the new drug benefit on the campaign trail as a major domestic policy achievement, recently has had to play defense on it. Having insisted that the benefit would cost no more than $400 billion in its first 10 years, the administration found that its own budget estimates had jacked the cost up to $534 billion." Slavery alive and well in Florida. "Modern-day slavery is alive and well in Florida, the head of a human rights center said Tuesday as it released a report on people forced to work as prostitutes, farmworkers and maids across the state. Human traffickers bring thousands of people into the United States each year and Florida is believed to be one of the top three destinations, along with New York and Texas, according to the Center for the Advancement of Human Rights at Florida State University." AP News Greenspan, the bum, advocates reducing Social Security benefits to have more money to give to the defense establishment. Washington Post. Greenspan, the whore. What he's right about is the deficit is going to eat us alive. BBC. Republicans say, "This election is about Security..." as if that somehow confers an advantage upon Bush. As Bush's CIA director George Tenet says, a "Next wave" of terrorists is taking shape as a result of mounting anti-Americanism in the world. Korematsu versus Bush. Village Voice: "Fred Korematsu, an American Citizen imprisoned in a Utah internment camp during the Second World War, received the presidential medal of freedom in 1998 from President Clinton for eventually and successfully resisting the flagrantly unconstitutional imprisonment." Kofi tells Brits: "Quit bugging me!" Reuters Woman dies watching Christ film -- From correspondents in Salt Lake CityFebruary 27, 2004A WOMAN watching Mel Gibson's new film The Passion of the Christ collapsed during the the final, bloody crucifixion scene and later died.While people were helping the woman, identified as 57-year-old Peggy Law Scott, in Wichita, Kansas, the lights were turned on and moviegoers were ushered out. She later died at a hospital. No cause of death was immediately given. The Australian Now the Bushies see their biggest hope in capturing Osama bin Laden. A typically Rumsfeldian comment: "I suspect that we'll find that it is accomplished at some point in the future, and I wouldn't have any idea when." CNN Howard Zinn, writing in The Progressive, says, "The newspapers on December 30 reported that 477 American GIs had died in the war. But what is not usually reported is that for every death there are four or five men and women seriously wounded ... George Bush was eager to send young men and women half a world away into the heart of another nation. And even though they had fearsome weapons, they were still vulnerable to guerrilla attacks that have left so many of them blinded and crippled. Is this not the ultimate betrayal of our young by our government?"
February 28, 2004
People in MotionHastert backs down! Here's the clip from Hill News: "Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) has dropped his opposition to a 60-day extension requested by a national commission to write a report analyzing the causes of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Hastert unexpectedly reversed himself after Sens. Joe Lieberman (D-Conn.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) threatened to delay crucial legislation to continue funding for the nationís transportation system by attaching a proposal to extend the commissionís deadline."
This is the kind of news that is really exciting. We are seeing repeated instances of the fascist clique caving in to pressure. THe Bush administration and its allies have been suppressing any investigation into what happened on 9/11 since 9/12 or so. It's an outrage equal to or greater than the interference with the election of 2000 by the the Supreme Court. Now a growing number of people are saying enough resistance into the investigation of this catastrophe. The legitimate attitude is finally expressing itself: We don't care who it embarasses, we want to know why over a hundred layers of defense procedures failed to work on Sept. 11. It's the least that common sense would demand.
We have seen the Bushites resist common sense and common decency so boldly so many times before, and get away with it, that it is amazing to see that they can't do it anymore. They are no longer to get away with anything and everything with impunity. That is big stuff.
These guys were used to having their way, to doing whatever they wanted without having to answer to anyone. Now suddenly the public is not so docile. Over and over we see these surrenders, and it is clear that they are the result of pressure. Past experience shows that they don't give in or back down just to be nice. Lately they seem to be reaching out for anything to make it appear that they have hold of the situation again, and failing.
There are a myriad of individuals and groups taking action, and it is starting to reach critical mass. I often think of December 12, 2000, when the Supreme Court issued its shocking verdict to step into a state election and stop it, then hand down a legal decision to put their political ally in the White House. At that time the world was stunned and many people outside of America asked, "What is wrong with Americans that they will let such an outrage stand?" But I believe we are now seeing the fruition of a wave of activism that was launched at that time. Now we are seeing it surfacing in the form of so many blows against the empire. The giant is strapped down by many tiny bonds, like Gulliver in Lilliput. We may be small, but there are many of us. Here's another example of individuals and groups rising up and effectively challenging the rampant abuses of power: "Librarians lead move to amend Patriot Act" in SeattlePi.
House of Representatives Medicare Bribery Case: According to Kaiser Network, the Kaiser Family Foundation's Daily Health Report "FBI agents reportedly are investigating allegations that Rep. Nick Smith (R-Mich.) was offered 'significant financial support' for his son's House campaign in exchange for a vote in favor of the Medicare legislation (HR 1), Roll Call reports (Bresnahan, Roll Call, 2/26). In December, Smith, who is retiring this year, said that unnamed Republican leaders promised to donate $100,000 to his son's congressional race in exchange for his support on the Medicare bill. However, Smith later backed away from that comment, saying that suggestions he was bribed are 'technically incorrect.'"
The fall of Aristide's government in Haiti is a corporate coup, back by the U.S. See saxakali.com and Washington Times. The Orwellian proclivities of the Bush administration are stunning. The Bushoids are now trying to reclassify hamburger making as manufacturing. In one stroke they could save the manufacturing sector! What visionaries! Newsday Kerry is not sitting on his advantage. He is pushing it, as he should. According to The Miami Herald, "Democratic presidential front-runner John Kerry accused President Bush's administration Thursday of fomenting conflict in Haiti out of ideological opposition to President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. Kerry called on Bush to name Florida Sen. Bob Graham, one-time rival for the Democratic nomination, to be a special envoy to the Caribbean nation to negotiate a peaceful resolution between Aristide and the rebels threatening to oust him from power." "Diebold, Electronic Voting and the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy" Common Dreams
February 29, 2004
The AP reports that the FBI is ordering a formal review of the Timothy McVeigh/Oklahoma City bombing case. During the trial the FBI apparently suppressed documents about McVeigh's accomplices. The move takes place as the trial of McVeigh's accomplice Terry Nichols in April approaches. Pre-empting Bush's new October Surprise plans? Reports now have surfaced as far into the mainstream as AOL that bin Laden has already been captured and is being held so his release can be stage-managed for maximum impact on the election. What won't they do? This brings to mind the October Surprise in 1980, in which contact between Reagan-Bush representatives and Iranian officials were reported to include negotiations about holding the American hostages until after the election so Carter wouldn't gain any electoral advantage from their release. Instead they were released in perfect synchronization with Reagan's inauguration so the two images could be juxtaposed on TV. Later, the Reagan-Bush administration continued its corrupt dealings with the Iranian regime, an avowed enemy of the U.S., with a covert weapons-for-cash exchange with the Iranians. The administration then used the cash to fund its Nicaraguan Contra death squads, which was explicitly outlawed by Congress at the time. This latter treasonous trick became known euphemistically as "the Iran Contra scandal," which was finally covered up for good when Bush senior pardoned his cohorts for their criminal convictions related to the affair. Inching Toward the Truth About 9/11 -- According to Col. Donn de Grand-Pre, U.S. Army (ret.), on the Alex Jones Radio Show Feb. 25, 2004, "The trigger for the 9/11 activity was the imminent and unstoppable world-wide financial collapse which can only be prevented temporarily by a major war, perhaps to become known as World War III. To bring it off one more time, martial law will probably be imposed in the United States." The interview, in which the Colonel concludes the hijackers had no control of the aircraft, appears on WarFolly.com. Also see more about the Colonel's book "The Enemy is Inside the Gates".