Thursday, October 13, 2005

Other items

Billie e-mails to note Ralph Blumenthal's "In Texas, Marriage Is on Ballot" in this morning's New York Times. Billie makes two points. 1) They're using the gay issue in 2005 not 2006. 2) "What were those rumors, Rick Perry?" She's referring to a live press conference carried on stations in her area (DFW) where Rick Perry announced that all the whispers and rumors were upsetting to his family. But he never identified those rumors. Billie thinks this will come up during the Republican primary. She's just not sure if it will be brought up publicly in commercials and a debate or whether it will be more whispers.

Billie: When rumors cause a governor to tear up and choke up on live TV at a press conference he called to address the rumors, I think the governor needs to come forward with what the rumors were.

Billie also corrects me for an earlier entry where I wondered (with regards to Harrie Miers gushing to then governor Bully Boy) would Greg Abbott gush to Rick Perry, "You're so buff."
Billie says no one who has ever seen Rick Perry would call him buff. They would instead, as Molly Ivins does, comment on his hair. My apologies for that error.

Ned notes that Douglas Jehl's "Report Says White House Ignored C.I.A. on Iraq Chaos" should put to the rest the "we were all wrong" argument/falsehood that attempts to act as though no one could have know what our invasion/occupation would lead to:

The review was conducted by a team led by Richard J. Kerr, a former deputy director of central intelligence, working under contract for the C.I.A. It acknowledged the deep failures in the agency's prewar assessments of Iraq's weapons programs but said "the analysis was right" on cultural and political issues related to postwar Iraq.
Mr. Kerr's review did not describe those findings in detail. But The New York Times first reported last year that two classified reports prepared for President Bush in January 2003 had predicted that an American-led invasion of Iraq would increase support for political Islam and would result in a deeply divided Iraqi society prone to violent internal conflict.
Those reports were by the National Intelligence Council, the highlevel group responsible for producing the government's most authoritative intelligence assessments.
Since the invasion of Iraq in March 2003, the C.I.A. and other intelligence agencies have been notably more gloomy than the White House and the Pentagon about prospects for stability in Iraq. In the summer of 2004, newspaper articles about those reports so angered some Republicans that they accused the agency of trying to undermine President Bush.

The Times (always needing to have their fun) runs a Reuters story entitled "Chavez Ousts Missionaries." The missionaries are the New Tribe Ministries. The story tells you that. It doesn't tell you of it's long history in Venezuela. There are serious questions about New Tribe Ministries (we went over this in countless courses on Latin America, they aren't confined to Venezuela and they seem to have a nomadic tendency that's geared not towards results but has placed them near commodities). Jose Vicente Rangel has long accused New Tribe Ministries of many things. They have a long history in the area and have a curious relationship with corporations as well as intervention from the US embassy whenever there's talk of kicking them out of country, not of imprisoning them, which the embassy staff would have reason to register a reaction, but of kicking them out of the country. (Charges of ethnocide have long been made against New Tribe Ministries.) You don't get any of that in the Reuters' story. The Times is having a little laugh on the readers today. (Long history, means long history. Something like over fifty years by now. And these are charges made by government officials, historically, at various times over the years. Of course it's not our government officials or ones we approve of, so the Times chooses to look the other way.)

Marcia notes Judith Miller's no longer in contempt and that she's "Ms. Miller" and Valerie Plame is "Ms. Wilson" but that yesterday's "feminism" 101 from Laura Bush referred to her as "Mrs. Bush."

Marcia, sometime we'll talk about the historical struggle just to get "Ms." into the Times. That said, Marcia's right. "Mrs." is not part of Laura's "title" (the Times so loves their titles that they even created an exception for Agnew after he left in disgrace) . "First Lady Laura Bush" would be her title.

(To clarify, Judith Miller is married. That's why Marcia brought it up.)

Dominick e-mails to note David Lindorff's "Impeachment, Now and Then" (CounterPunch):

Here's a fascinating bit of news: More people today want to see President Bush impeached than wanted Clinton impeached on the eve of the House's vote on his impeachment.
According to a poll by the Zogby organization, just released by the group, 50 percent of the American public now would like to see the House impeach Bush if it were found that he had lied about the reasons for going to war in Iraq (if?).
Compare that to December 17, 1998, only days before Clinton's impeachment by the House of Representatives, when an AP poll found that only 36 percent of the American public wanted to see the president impeached.
Clearly Americans view the flawed invasion of Iraq and other actions by the Bush administration, like the placing of business cronies in high places, the bankrupting of the federal government, and the failure to come to the rescue of an American city as far more serious than Clinton's sex romp and the lying about it that followed. And there's plenty more bad news to come for Bush, beginning with likely indictments in the Plame outing affair.
So, is the campaign by After Downing Street and other organizations to seek Bush's impeachment just tilting at windmills? It certainly isn't likely to happen with the current Republican domination of the House, but if public anger against Bush continues to grow, that could all change in November 2006, when all House seats are up for reelection.

Remember Mike has an interview with Tracey (Ruth's granddaughter) at Mikey Likes It!

Rod e-mails to note today's scheduled topics for Democracy Now!:

Thursday, October 13:
* Star al Jazeera investigative journalist Yousri Fouda joins us to talk about Iraq, the media and his interviews with top al Qaeda leaders.
* A look at the presidential elections in Liberia where soccer star George Weah and Harvard-trained economist Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf have emerged as frontrunners.

Rod also notes these upcoming appearances for Amy Goodman's Un-embed the Media tour:

* Amy Goodman in New York, NY:
Sat, Oct 15
NewLife Expo
New Yorker Hotel
34th St. and 8th Ave.
New York, NY
Keynote speech
For tickets and more information, visit:

* Amy Goodman in New York, NY:
Sun, Oct 16
2005 Annual Fall Party
Dos Pueblos:
NY-Tipitapa (Nicaragua) Sister City Project
503 West 120 Street (between Amsterdam Avenue and Broadway)
New York, NY
Music by John Fisher, Jim Rogers, and Ben Silver
For more information:
(mail) Dos Pueblos, 2565 Broadway, #173; New York, NY 10025

* Amy Goodman in Oakland, CA:
Sat, Oct 22
*TIME: 7:30 PM
Presentation of first annual Pace e Bene Nonviolence Award to Dolores Huerta
First Congregational Church
2501 Harrison at 27th St
Oakland, CA
Amy will be interviewing Dolores Huerta
Tickets $15 advance, $18 door. $50 includes reserved seating and reception
Benefits Pace e Bene Nonviolence Service
Available in advance at
by calling 510-268-8765
or at independent East Bay bookstores:
Black Oak; DIESEL, A Bookstore; Global Exchange store; Pendragon; Pegasus(both stores); Walden Pond
Reception tickets only available in advance until October 17th at
or by calling 510-268-8765
Download a flier here.

* Amy Goodman in New Paltz, NY:
Thur, Oct 27
Panel discussion: Clean Money Clean Elections
SUNY New Paltz
Lecture Center 100

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