Archive for Iraq War

GW Bush: "I'm not a great artist." He left out "con."

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gw bush paintings nudes via Gawker

GW Bush and his band of (alleged) war criminals conned gullible Americans into believing that Iraq had something to do with the September 11, 2001 attacks, and that the torture they swore they didn't practice was nothing more than "enhanced interrogation." Well, they didn't con everyone, but they still got away with murder, literally:

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Now GW Bush is diverting attention from his horrific time in office to his newest passion, painting. Here's George Bush and his daughter Jenna Heh heh heh-ing through a tour of some of his newly unveiled work. Pay no attention to his former swaggery warmonger persona. Apparently it's been replaced with Mr. Stepford:

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What, no finger painting? No dried macaroni and glitter pasted onto paper plates? Who knows, maybe he ate the paste.

At about 1:03 he admits to painting one self-portrait that resembles Alfred E. Newman. Hey, he said it, we didn't. Okay, we did:

george w. bush what me worry The NationThen he and Jenna discussed Daddy Dearest's relationship with Vladimir Putin. Ironically, this is what Bush said at about 3:00 in response to Vlad's bragging about his own "bigger, stronger and faster" pet (via The Hill):

"Wow. Anybody who thinks, 'My dog is bigger than your dog' is an interesting character."

Wow. Anybody who thinks, "My country is bigger than your country so let's invade, kill, and torture" is an interesting character.

He also said that painting "opened my mind." He must have meant, "opened what's left of my mind," assuming, of course, that he ever had one.

And soon after that comment, he admitted, "I'm not a great artist." He left out "con." See, despite his best efforts to pull one over on America, he and the rest of BushCo were exposed for who they are. Plus, with the revelations of the soon-to-be-declassified CIA Torture Report making their way into the headlines, the paint will really hit the fan.

He followed his "I'm not a great artist" with, "As you know, I'm a driven person" (at 4:07). Not only was he was driven to invade countries that never attacked us, but also to draw "stick figure characters," per Mrs. GW Bush, describing Artist George's early app-inspired creative efforts. Stick figures. How typically simple. How ap(p)t.

Jenna: "His man cave was transformed into an art studio."

Again, how ironic: Jenna used the "cave" word. CNN, August 24, 2002:

AMANPOUR: And, of course, as we've been saying, the focus is on finding Osama bin Laden.

BUSH: In terms of Mr. bin Laden himself, we'll get him running. We'll smoke him out of his cave and we'll get him eventually.

Now it's our turn.

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2004 Flashback: Things you have to believe to be a Republican today

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Republican BS smaller

I was cleaning out a pile of old papers and ran across this email from July 23, 2004. The more things change, the more they stay the same:

Things you have to believe to be a Republican today

Saddam was a good guy when Reagan armed him, a bad guy when Bush's daddy made war on him, a good guy when Cheney did business with him, and a bad guy when Bush needed a "we can't find Bin Laden" diversion.

Trade with Cuba is wrong because the country is communist, but trade with China and Vietnam is vital to a spirit of international harmony.

The U.S. should get out of the United Nations, and our highest national priority is enforcing U.N. resolutions against Iraq.

A woman can't be trusted with decisions about her own body, but multinational corporations can make decisions affecting all mankind without regulation.

Jesus loves you and shares your hatred of homosexuals and Hillary Clinton.

The best way to improve military morale is to praise the troops in speeches while slashing veterans' benefits and combat pay.

If condoms are kept out of schools, adolescents won't have sex.

A good way to fight terrorism is to belittle our long-time allies, then demand their cooperation and money.

Providing health care to all Iraqis is sound policy. Providing health care to all Americans is socialism.

HMOs and insurance companies have the best interests of the public at heart.

Global warming and tobacco's link to cancer are junk science, but creationism should be taught in schools.

A president lying about an extramarital affair is an impeachable offense. A president lying to enlist support for a war in which thousands die is solid defense policy.

Government should limit itself to the powers named in the Constitution, which include banning gay marriages and censoring the Internet.

The public has a right to know about Hillary's cattle trades, but George Bush's driving record is none of our business.

Being a drug addict is a moral failing and a crime, unless you're a conservative radio host. Then it's an illness, and you need our prayers for your recovery.

You support states' rights, which means Attorney General John Ashcroft can tell states what local voter initiatives they have the right to adopt.

What Bill Clinton did in the 1960s is of vital national interest, but what Bush did in the '80s is irrelevant.

Friends don't let friends vote Republican.

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Pres. Obama promises to increase intelligence support, provide new weaponry to Iraq

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back to the future

Here we go again. Hello Iraq.

It's understandable that President Obama would feel it necessary to go back to Iraq if it means eliminating or at least containing an increasingly out of control Al Qaeda, but America no longer has the stomach for it. I know I don't.

And this puts the president in the tough position of sticking to withdrawal from Iraq while feeling obligated to counter a growing problem that threatens our national security. But to put it in the simplest terms possible: Oy vey.

The Los Angeles Times has a lot more, but here are the bare bones:

Facing a deadly resurgence of Al Qaeda in Iraq, President Obama signaled Friday that he would begin increasing U.S. military support for Baghdad after five years of reducing it.... Administration officials said this would include growing intelligence support and new weaponry. [...]

And the Obama administration, despite a deep reluctance to become more entangled in the Middle East, believes it cannot afford a further strengthening of the Al Qaeda affiliate, which is also called the Islamic State of Iraq in the Levant. [...]

Maliki, who had not visited the White House for two years, spent the week in Washington lobbying administration and congressional officials for more arms, intelligence help and training.

Iraqi officials said they did not ask for special forces or CIA advisors, but were not ruling out such things.

American drone strikes, carried out with the support of Maliki's government, are another option.... But Maliki's aides said Iraq could turn to other world powers if the United States turned down its request.

Back to the future...

here we go again smaller

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Assholes R Us

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Crazy party

Tom Coburn suffers from delusional thinking. Just like the virus currently spreading through Walking Dead, you don't know you have it until it's too late.

How lonely it must be in the castle of the one-eyed king. Located somewhere in Oklahoma with a summer palace in Washington D.C., the King Crazy spreads his rule across the United States. The members of this blathering idiot's court are grand vizier, Rafael Cruz, court jester Mike Lee and of course the Florida Coconut himself, Marco Rubio. (all pretenders to the Dufus Throne)

With a mantra of the best defense is a strong offense, Kooky King Coburn has struck out at the leadership of his opponents. Putting aside the Congressional Rules of Civility, Dr. Tommy just publicly began the assault with a verbal attack. His target, the duly elected leader of the senate, is Harry Reid.

The boiling point was reached Monday when Tommy C. held nothing back when discussing his relationship with opposition leader Reid at a fundraiser in New York City, according to the New York Daily News.

asshole 3

"There's no comity with Harry Reid. I think he's an absolute a--hole," Coburn said at a gala for the New York Young Republican Club, as quoted by the Daily News.

Asked about the level of civility in the Senate, Coburn reportedly listed other Democratic senators that have "great relationships" with him, including Chuck Schumer (D-NY).

Three things wrong here. First, Coburn isn't bright enough to know, let alone properly use the word "comity." He probably meant comedy. We all know that when it comes to comedy stylings, Harry Reid is no Al Franken. So I'll have to give that one to Terrible Tommy.

And secondly, Chuck Schumer claims he's never been friendly with the late James Coburn, the equally late Charles Coburn or the acting late, Senator Tom Coburn. The closest that came to being was in the Senate washroom when King Tom was refused a hand shake by Schumer when Coburn hadn't washed before extending his hand.

And finally, "Asshole?" Really? This from an ordained Southern Baptist deacon? I bet Deacon Tom's sermons really were fire and brimstone oratories.

Maybe I'm just expecting too much. He's a doctor who votes against a woman's right to choose in her personal reproductive decisions, pushes for war in Syria, voices opposition to peace efforts with Iran, votes for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, votes against immigration reform, votes against health care reform, supports a government shutdown, declares there's no inherent harm in a debt ceiling default, and when all of those fail, he joins the fray in a chorus of name calling!

You go, Tom Terrific. Your insincerity ranks up there with the North Carolina voter official who's bigotry remarks were justified with "One of  my best friends is... Negro."

You can call Chuck Schumer or President Obama your friends, but the hollow sound of that proclamation is all your subjects are really hearing.

A-hole? That's the best you can do? Maybe it's time we start looking for a stronger King.

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Bernie Sanders: You can't fix the economy simply by shredding the safety net

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GOP it's not about you

What oh what would we Progressives do without Bernie Sanders? In today's Los Angeles Times, he wrote an op-ed laying out in very clear detail how to make wise choices about how to fix the economy.

Sanders, thankfully, is a member of a budget panel composed of Democratic, Republican and independent Senate and House members doing what they can, supposedly, to avoid another GOP government shutdown.

Senator Sanders explains how to move forward (as opposed to the same old backward, destructive GOP ideas), and how we managed to go from healthy surpluses to (unnecessary) deficits.

He reminds us that by the end of President Clinton's presidency, we had a a $236-billion surplus, and that the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office predicted a 10-year budget surplus of $5.6 trillion, meaning we could have erased the national debt by 2011.

Too bad Republicans screwed that up.

And of course, they're blaming President Obama for the horrible outcomes of their horrible policies and horrible obstruction. Here's how it really went down:

  • GW Bush's Afghanistan and Iraq wars were not paid for.
  • Those wars cost us up to $6 trillion.
  • Those wars were put on our national credit card.
  • Bush signed Congress's costly prescription drug bill.
  • That costly prescription drug program was not paid for either.
  • Bush and Congress gave big fat tax breaks to the wealthy and big corporations.
  • As a result, revenue went down.
  • The 2008 recession, caused by the deregulation of Wall Street, also caused revenue to drop.
  • Big fat surpluses turned into big fat deficits.

tadaa3Now gather 'round kiddies, because it's Hypocrisy Time!

Yay

Interestingly, today's "deficit hawks" in Congress — Rep. Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.), Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) and other conservative Republicans — voted for those measures that drove up deficits. Now that they're worried about deficits again, they want to dismantle virtually every social program designed to protect working families, the elderly, children, the sick and the poor.

In other words, it's OK to spend trillions on a war we should never have waged in Iraq and to provide huge tax breaks for billionaires and multinational corporations.

booo

Sanders goes on to say that austerity doesn't work, because it clearly hurts those who are already suffering.

Instead of talking about cuts in Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, we must end the absurdity of corporations not paying a nickel in federal income taxes. [...]

At a time when we now spend almost as much as the rest of the world combined on defense, we can make judicious cuts in our armed forces without compromising our military capability.

He also thinks it would be a swell idea if Congress members started, you know, listening to the American people, especially because so many polls show that we don't want cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

In fact, according to a recent National Journal poll, 81% do not want to cut Medicare at all, 76% do not want to cut Social Security at all, and 60% do not want to cut Medicaid at all. Other polls make it clear that Americans believe that the wealthiest among us and large corporations must pay their fair share in taxes.

So, Republicans (and even some Dems), how about paying more attention to us, the voters, instead of trying to grab it all for yourselves? It's not about you. It's about all of us. It's about We the People.

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A perspective on soldiers "that may not be agreeable to many people."

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thinking hard

The Los Angeles Times Calendar section prints letters every Sunday in their actual hands-on, papery newspaper, the one I get every morning. Unfortunately, they do not post them online. So, no link for you (apologies to Seinfeld's "soup Nazi")!

However, I will transcribe one controversial letter that was worthy of note. It's a tough one to read, partly because of the many painful truths it lays bare, and partly because our instincts (and the media) tell us to "support our troops" no matter how we may feel about war, necessary or unnecessary, legitimate of fraudulent. Most of us do support the individuals, just not necessarily what they are often sent to do on our behalf. This letter prods us to analyze more deeply the people who wear the uniform.

Additionally, the author advances the "nobody sign up as soldiers" notion which would leave us to wonder how we would defend ourselves as a nation. But still, his points are as clear as they are compelling.

Agree or disagree, this one makes you think:

Jake Tapper offers that "we, as a society, in no small way caused this pain and inflicted these scars" [For Soldiers, a Postwar Battle Within," Oct. 6]. As moving and empathetic and noble as these sentiments are, his article fails, as with most articles of this genre, to consider a different, darker, hush-hush perspective of soldiers:

Regardless of why they volunteered for the military, they were of an age and maturity to know what they were getting themselves into, they had the same access as anyone else in this society as to why we went to war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and they certainly had access to other soldiers who had come home in less than mint condition to know that was was indeed "hell" and not just about cowboys and Indians.

In other words, dare I say that these soldiers have no one to blame but themselves? That all they are, are pawns of a government controlled by corporate greed and dealers of weapons of mass destruction (and further attested to by their negative treatment by the government that used them after they came home), and they bought into it because of their failure to use common critical thinking skills? Or because, under the guise and lies of patriotism, they just wanted to kick somebody's ass because they're young and aggressive and didn't know how else to channel their emotions in a more constructive way?

Of course I espouse a perspective that may not be agreeable to many people and many may think of me as heartless, but this is the truth as I see it, and somebody's got to state it.

In other words, if nobody signed up as soldiers, then maybe there wouldn't be any war and our society would begin to transform itself for the better.

Hewitt Morris

Fullerton, CA

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Video- Peggy Noonan: 'Americans Are Snake-Bit' From War She Cheerleaded For

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I can never suppress the urge to smack the poop outta that smarmy face. Via. Heather.

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