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May 1st, 2006

A Day Without Immigrants

So I hear that America is going to grind to a halt today.


The economic effect of “A Day Without Immigrants” will be be nil in the scheme of things. It won’t hurt us heartless gringos who might have to wait longer for a cab driver or go to a different store to buy milk. Some overly made up Hollywood Barbie-Mom may have to watch her kids today, but oh well. Events like these cause very little real disruption from an economic perspective — at least for the inconvenienced folks. For the protesters trying to flex their muscle, it’s a day without pay, maybe a tomorrow without jobs.
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Posted in Immigration | 16 Comments »

April 29th, 2006


Can you defame the government?

If you ask questions about private contractors mismanagement of public funds, is that libelous?

Should big deep pocketed companies be allowed to crush individuals who dare to put “2+2″ together?
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Posted in General | 8 Comments »

April 28th, 2006

Hell Has Officially Frozen Over!

Caution — reading the following may cause you to spew your coffee. I did. You’ve been warned:
I read this nugget from CNN:

WASHINGTON (CNN) — President Bush on Thursday said he wants to raise fuel-efficiency standards on automobiles, as members of both parties jockeyed for political position on the issue of rising gas prices.

Bush called on Congress to give him the authority to set the standards for passenger cars sold in the United States as a means of reducing the nation’s demand for gasoline.

“I encourage them to give me that authority,” Bush told reporters during a visit to a service station in Biloxi, Mississippi. “It’s an authority I used for light trucks, and I intend to use it wisely if Congress will give me that authority.” (Watch political frenzy spurred by gas prices — 2:01 )

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Posted in Politics, Science, Environment | 3 Comments »

April 26th, 2006

Do You Know These Numbers?

What do the following figures mean?

1. 21,000,000

2. 7,665,000,000
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Posted in Politics, Economics, DailyFeatured | 10 Comments »

April 24th, 2006

Those Rotten Cheating Bastards

I’m copying this over from C-SPAN because I’m to pissed to write anything analytical. These fricking sons of bitches should rot in the bottom pits of hell. They are politcal rapists and we are their victims.

House Leaders Strip Disclosure Requirements From Lobbying Bill April 24, 2006 by Congressional Quarterly

House leaders during the recess stripped provisions out of the lobbying and ethics overhaul bill that would have required lobbyists to disclose all contact with lawmakers, saying such a move would be too stifling for the industry. The language, added in an April 5 markup by the House Judiciary Committee and backed by Chairman F. James Sensenbrenner Jr., R-Wis., would have strengthened the disclosure requirements for lobbyists. But House leaders decided the term contact would have been hard to define. That was the difficulty of it, Rules Committee spokeswoman Jo Maney said. Lobbying is a First Amendment right and we would not want to in any way chill the desire to petition the government or lobby the government. Democrats and watchdog groups criticized the move, saying the bill already lacked sufficient reform language and is now further weakened. House Republican leaders have turned an already unacceptable lobbying and ethics bill into a complete joke, said Fred Wertheimer, president of Democracy 21. House leaders also stripped language curbing so-called 527 groups out of the bill because it was passed in separate legislation (HR 513) earlier this month.

Posted in Politics, Right Wing Nut | 3 Comments »

April 24th, 2006

New Bush Poll - Like Desert After Dinner

Because some things just taste sweet. From CNN.

WASHINGTON (CNN) — President Bush’s approval ratings have sunk to a personal low, with only a third of Americans saying they approve of the way he is handling his job, a national poll released Monday said.

In the telephone poll of 1,012 adult Americans carried out Friday through Sunday by Opinion Research Corporation for CNN, 32 percent of respondents said they approve of Bush’s performance, 60 percent said they disapprove and 8 percent said they do not know.

That’s a significant drop from the way Americans perceived the president a year ago. In a CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll carried out April 29-May 1, 2005, Americans were split on their assessments of Bush’s performance, with 48 percent saying they approved and 49 percent saying they disapproved. (Read the complete results document — PDF)

CNN’s poll has a sampling error of plus-or-minus 3 percentage points for most questions.

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Posted in Politics, Poll Results | 2 Comments »

April 24th, 2006

Chinese For Dinner

Last Tuesday night Chinese President Hu had dinner at Bill Gates’ mansion. There he wined and dined with Washington State’s political and economic heavyweights while poor George Dubya sat at home waiting for President Hu to come visit him. Now some people like Lou Dobbs are complaining about this, but not me. I think it makes perfect sense.

Washington State is the only state to run a trade surplus with China.

Yes a surplus. The big scary red menace, the one trouncing American companies and soon to put us all in soup lines just bought 80 new planes from Boeing for about 4 billion dollars. They also worked out a deal with Microsoft to purchase Windows for a few million machines after they reached an agreement on copyright protection. They love Starbucks. Chinese trade is huge business for Washington State.
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Posted in Politics, Education, Economics, Science, China | 6 Comments »

April 24th, 2006

Osama Part - Views on Sudan?

As Chris mentions in his post, Osama has released another audition tape for the Mike Savage show. His usual fiery bluster about Zionist crusades against the poor beleaguered Muslim world struck the usual sympathy generating targets - the plight of the Palestinians, the Hamas cold shoulder, Danish cartoons, etc. - all the things we have grown to love as wedge issues between the West and people willing to support a mass murderer. This time however, I think he may have gone one hate filled idea to far.

He wants the Muslim world to fight a U.N. peacekeeping force in Sudan.

Sudan, you know Sudan - the place where Darfur is? The place where fighting between the government (and their ethinic militias) and rebels has led to the slaughter of tens if not hundreds of thousands of civilians, where thousands of women were raped and brutalized. The place where words like genocide are not hyperbole, but reality.
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Posted in Politics, Military, Middle East | No Comments »

April 20th, 2006

McClellan’s Replacement?

Posted in General | 6 Comments »

April 18th, 2006

Bush Is The Decider

So President Bush says that he is the decider on Rumsfeld’s future. Americans should feel much safer now knowing a man with such an august track record of judging competence is standing by his man. From Brownie to Chertoff to Bolton the President sure can pick a winner.
All this speculation about Rumy’s job even distracted him from his vacation.
We all know how rarely the man takes one of those.

The president told reporters Tuesday that his vote of confidence for Rumsfeld was an effort to stamp out speculation about his status.
“You can understand why, because we’ve got people’s reputations at stake,” Bush said of his aversion to speculation about personnel matters.
“And on Friday I stood up and said, ‘I don’t appreciate the speculation about Don Rumsfeld; he’s doing a fine job; I strongly support him.’”

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Posted in Politics, Military, Campaign News, Middle East | 3 Comments »

April 18th, 2006

A Message From Harry Reid

Dear Cranky,

Immigration is one of our most pressing national security issues and the fact is George Bush and his rubberstamping Republican allies in Congress have failed to deal with it responsibly. Instead, they turn reality upside down and today will start running ads against me on Spanish-language radio stations in Nevada claiming “Reid’s Democrat allies voted to treat millions of hardworking immigrants as felons.”

That is a lie. Democrats fought Bill Frist and House Republican efforts to bow to the extreme rightwing element of their party and treat twelve million hardworking immigrants like felons. In one week Democrats voted twice to support a bill that reinforces border security and brings millions of undocumented workers out of the shadows.
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Posted in Politics, Campaign News, Homeland Security, Immigration | 2 Comments »

April 17th, 2006

Supporting Rumsfeld?

They say Nero stood on the summit of the Palentine and played his lyre while flames devoured the world around him. If so, then he has a kindred spirit in America’s president. Our modern Nero seems content to play his never-changing tune while the Iraqi conflagration burns further and further out of control.

Rumsfeld is my man he sings.
Rumsfeld has my strong support.

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Posted in Military, Middle East, Homeland Security | No Comments »

April 16th, 2006

Jeb Bush — His Morals Superiority May Cost Us Opportunity

Let’s get the obvious out of the way first. I’m a Democrat. I’m pro-science. I’m pro-stem cell research. I’ve voted against Jeb Bush in two elections, and would do so again in a minute. The man has been a joke as Governor of Florida.

Unfortunately it isn’t a very funny joke recently.

Gov. Bush is an avowed opponent of embryonic stem-cell research. As a personal policy that maybe laudable, but as Governor trying to lead a tourist- and agriculture-heavy economy into the 21th century by luring biotech firms to the state, this is unacceptable.
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Posted in Politics, Religion, Science | 13 Comments »

April 14th, 2006

The BBC Gets Cranky

Shameless self promotion to follow.

Today I was invited to participate on the BBC World Service show called World Have Your Say. We were discussing Whether or not Don Rumsfeld should resign or not (the answer is yes - but you all know that all ready). I was joined by a few fellow bloggers of various political and national stripes. I have to say that 1. I was rather nervous because I found out about it about 40 minutes before air (thanks Steve! really, I mean it *cough*) and well, it’s the BBC for god’s sake.

It turned out OK I think. The host of the show was very gracious, and I have to say it was fun. I certainly have the voice for writing, but what the hell. I’d do it again.
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Posted in General, Politics, Military, World News | 11 Comments »

April 14th, 2006

Tax Day Reflections

Tomorrow is April 15, have you paid your taxes yet? Ah don’t give me that look, paying taxes is not an evil thing, it’s the cost of admission to a free society. No one wants to pay more than their share, but honestly, most people understand they have to pay something. Even prostitutes.

Yep, prostitutes. I’m not talking about the media whores who pander for your attention - I mean good old fashioned, honest male-care specialists. I was listening to Bill Press on the way into work and mention a group called PoNY - Prostitutes of New York. PoNY is an advocacy group (not a referral service, quit looking) for carnal caregivers that sends out information to its members every year to help them fill out their taxes. Many of them want to be able to file, not be tax evaders, and be eligible for Social Security (hey if anyone deserves to retire…). They often file as self-employed to avoid listing their occupation.

What’s ironic is that at a time when the world’s oldest profession is trying to pay their fair share in society, the people most able to pay are doing the opposite. In today’s New York Times, Paul Krugman has a stinging break down of the Bush tax cut, and the lies surrounding who it went to:
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Posted in General, Politics, Economics | No Comments »

April 13th, 2006

Military/Civilian Disconect

How can you prosecute a war if the military and civilians don’t trust each other?”
Richard H. Kohn, University of North Carolina

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Posted in Politics, Military, Middle East | 10 Comments »

April 11th, 2006

Karl Rove Thanks Republican Lawyers

I heard this on the Lynne Samuel’s show yesterday. I think Raw Story broke it first (if not, hey I tried to credit it correctly). It seems old Turd Blossom gave a little speech to the National Republican Lawyers Association last Friday night, and was full of praise for their part in keeping “democracy” safe:

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Posted in Politics, Right Wing Nut | 2 Comments »

April 11th, 2006

Is Anyone Surprised Bush Wins “Free Speech” Award?

Of course it’s for stifling free speech. According to MSNBC:

RICHMOND, Va. - President Bush and the Justice Department are among the winners of the 2006 Jefferson Muzzle awards, given by a free-speech group to those it considers the most egregious First Amendment violators in the past year.

Bush led the list, compiled by the Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression, for authorizing the National Security Agency to tap the phones of U.S. citizens who make calls overseas. The wiretaps were conducted without authorization from a federal court. The White House defended the warrantless wiretapping program as necessary to fight terrorism.

The Justice Department earned a Muzzle for demanding that Google turn over thousands of Internet records, prompting concerns that more invasive requests could follow if the government prevails.

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Posted in General, Politics | No Comments »

April 10th, 2006

More Declassification Lunacy

From CNN:

Bush acknowledges declassifying intelligence.

“I thought it was important for people to get a better sense of what I was saying in my speeches,” Bush said, answering a question from an audience member at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies in Washington. “And I felt I could do so without jeopardizing ongoing intelligence matters.”

Bush said he had authorized the release of the documents because some Americans questioned his reasons for going to war.

“So I wanted people to see the truth,” he said. “And I thought it made sense for people to see the truth.”

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Posted in Politics, Military, Middle East, Homeland Security | 6 Comments »

April 9th, 2006

If It Wasn’t a Leak?

OK, everyone has discussed Scooter’s revelation that Bush authorized the “information sharing” about Valerie Plame. I probably don’t have a lot to add to the discourse, but I guess I’m just confused and need your help on something. Was it a leak or not?

According to White House jester Scott McClellan, “the president staunchly opposes releasing classified information that could affect U.S. security. And he pointed out that the president reserves the right to declassify material. ” OK, simple enough I guess. We don’t release classified info that could get people killed or jeopardize our safety.

But then:
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Posted in Politics | 19 Comments »