Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Look who left their street corner

One of the things we can do these days is laugh as various American personalities and outlets try to pretend that they really tried to stop the war.  It's funny, really, that grown adults think they can get away with rewriting history.

Take the awful Cynthia Tucker.  She's just a bad political columnist today.  She was much worse when it mattered.  We don't link to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.  That's Betty's hometown paper.  You can speak to her, you can speak to her parents or her sisters and they'll tell you all about that piece of crap paper and the way it launched one attack after another on Cynthia McKinney.

Impeach Bush?  Cynthia McKinney would have been a yes vote on the eve of war.  Too bad that the newspaper -- where  Tucker was the editor of the editorial pages -- launched a witch hunt, a non-stop effort to demonize McKinney.  It worked.  Though she'd held office since 1997, she lost to a primary challenger in 2002.  Two years later, she fought back and won her seat back.  So it was time to bring in an even more corporate-backed challenger.

The paper never could tell that story.  But they always had time to ridicule Cynthia.  You know unlike Hank Johnson (who now holds the seat), Cynthia never fell asleep during a session.  But she was ridiculed.  You can fall asleep in an open session of Congress, in the midst of a hearing no less, and the AJC won't say one word about.

But they always had time to go after Cynthia.

If Tucker is unhappy about the Iraq War, she needs to take responsibility for the war she helped run against Cynthia McKinney.

Actions have consequences.

And Tucker worked overtime to sideline one of the most vocal anti-war voices, to get this woman run out of Congress.

If Cynthia had *not* been trashed by her local paper, chances are she wouldn't have left Congress in January 2003, she would have won re-election in November 2002.  That means  she would have been in Congress March 13, 2003.  What happened then?   Professor  Francis A. Boyle, international law and human rights expert,  explains:

Since this is the tenth anniversary of the Bush war against Iraq, concerning Democratic Party support for it: On March 13, 2003 Congressman John Conyers convened an emergency meeting in Washington DC at a law firm right down the street from the White House on the Eve of War to consider, discuss and debate my draft Bill to impeach Bush and Cheney to try to stop that war. He invited Ramsey Clark and me to come in and debate the case for impeachment. The debate was 2 hours long. He also invited in about 40 top NGO honchos affiliated with the Democratic Party, including John Podesta, for the debate. I will not name the rest of them here, but I will never forget these pro-war cowards and hypocrites for the rest of my life-- not including Congressman Conyers. At the end of 2 hours of vigorous debating, we adjourned with my draft Bill of Impeachment sitting on the table. As Ramsey and I walked out of the building to take our separate cabs, I turned to him and said : “ Ramsey, I don’t understand it. Why didn’t those people take me up on my offer to stay here, polish up my Bill of Impeachment immediately, and put it in right away to try to stop this war?” And Ramsey replied: “I think most of the people there want a war.” The Democrats supported that war from the get-go. And this includes the Democratic National Committee. Podesta was there on their behalf and in the name of the DNC put the kybosh on my Bill of Impeachment designed to stop Bush’s war against Iraq.

It only would have taken one strong voice to stand up.  Cynthia could have been the voice.  From all we've seen in her long public career, Cynthia would have been that voice.  One member to voice outrage, one member not in the pocket of Podesta and company and not afraid to speak up could have gotten the ball rolling.

John Conyers couldn't.  He was too swayed/cowed by Nancy Pelosi (as we saw when he became Chair of the House Judiciary Committee and refused to pursue impeachment as he had publicly promised -- and refused to pursue it after Bully Boy Bush left office despite another promise).  Pelosi hated Cynthia and Cynthia wasn't too fond of the fakeness of Nancy.  More importantly, likability and Committee assignments didn't sway Cynthia's vote.  Cynthia speaking against Podesta and putting it in stark, ethical terms could have led Maxine Waters and Lynn Woolsey and others to take a strong stand which would have forced John Conyers to do the same and Bully Boy Bush might have been on trial for impeachment before the Iraq War started.

So Tucker needs to go find another street corner to stand on because no one in this neighborhood is interested in what she's selling.

There's the Center for Public Integrity.  That's a joke, that name.  If you've noticed, in the last four years, they really don't have many stories to tell, do they, these investigative 'journalists.'  They keep digging away at life before 2008.  That's because of who foots the bills.

And the Democratic Party wasn't opposed to the illegal war in 2002 or 2003.

(Or even today, if they're honest.)

So today, the Center for Public 'Integrity' offers:

Five years ago, in an effort to hold accountable the officials who led the United States into the Iraq war and orchestrated the war’s expansion, the Center for Public Integrity and the Fund for Independence in Journalism combed through thousands of statements made by those officials about the war. The “Iraq; The War Card” project found hundreds of falsehoods, demonstrating that the policy underpinnings of the conflict were based in large measure on poor understanding, at best, or a manipulative public relations campaign, at worst.

Five years ago?  Why not ten?

Oh, that's right, because before the illegal war started, garbage like this passed for 'stop the war' and 'investigative reporting' -- and that's really their strongest piece.

Can't offend Podesta and the big Democratic Party money, not when you're a whore turning your next trick.

Stephanie Condon (CBS News -- and, no, she's not on a street corner, she's a real reporter) writes about that time in 2006 when Dems used the war to win both houses of Congress.

If the article were longer, it could include 2007.  One of my fave memories?  Listening to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi claim to an editorial board and group of reporters that she was trying to end the war but that mean old Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid was stopping her.

Did you know that?

Did you know that it took two houses of Congress to end the war or that Harry Reid was the reason Nancy couldn't deliver on her promises?

The Democrats used the Iraq War as a gift to get whatever they wanted.  They tricked many into believing that they would end the Iraq War.  In a historic shift, the 2006 mid-terms saw Dems win control of both houses of Congress.  Yet the Iraq War continued.

A lot of people lied.  They can claim they were following the tone set by Bully Boy Bush, I guess.  But they lied.

Remember how the Center for Public Integrity would partner with NPR and with the Los Angeles Times and with anyone who'd dosey-do and screech against Bully Boy Bush with them about the way veterans weren't being cared for?  All the while insisting that they were non-partisan?

Last week, big news emerged on the veterans front.  And it wasn't from the Center for Public Integrity.   Aaron Glantz (Center for Investigative Reporting via The Daily Beast) reported:

The Department of Veterans Affairs’ ability to quickly provide service-related benefits has virtually collapsed under President Barack Obama, according to internal VA documents obtained by the Center for Investigative Reporting and authenticated by the agency.

Those documents, which the VA has yet to share with Congress or the public, show that the delays new veterans face before receiving disability compensation and other benefits often are far longer than the agency has publicly acknowledged. The documents also offer insight into some of the reasons for those delays.

The agency tracks and widely reports the average wait time: 273 days. But the internal data indicates that veterans filing their first claim, including those who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, wait nearly two months longer, between 316 and 327 days. Those filing for the first time in America’s major population centers wait up to twice as long—642 days in New York, 619 days in Los Angeles, and 542 days in Chicago.

Where was the Center for Public Integrity?  Where was its R. Jeffrey Smith?

No where to be found.  See, it's not about what's news for the CPI, it's about who is in the White House.  If they like you, they look the other way.  If you're from the other party, they launch one attack after another insisting that this is about the issues and not about politics.

Aaron Glantz, by contrast, has covered the veterans issues regardless of which party controlled the White House.

If you're wondering why, in their coverage, so many 'reporters' appear to end with 2008 -- when the year is 2013 -- that's in part because they're not really writing about Iraq, they're writing hit pieces on Bully Boy Bush.  Check the archives, we called him out in real time.  Life does move on unless you're the pathetic person who whines forever about your ex and how he did you wrong.  A lot of the press looks like Gilda Rander in The Woman In Red.  Maybe they'll key Bully Boy Bush's car tomorrow but they'll never do anything that helps the Iraqi people today.

The e-mail address for this site is common_ills@yahoo.com.

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