Saturday, June 30, 2007

Kos on the CIA:

I don’t think it’s a very partisan thing to want a stable world. And even if you’re protecting American interests, I mean that can get ugly at times, but generally speaking I think their hearts in the right place. As an organization their heart is in the right place. I’ve never had any problem with the CIA. I’d have no problem working for them . .
Found at Francis Holland's blog, with my emphasis added. Note that the title is a tad misleading - Kos spent six months interviewing for a CIA job (a bit of a difference between that and actually working for CIA). Yeah, their hearts are in the right place, all right! And this dude is the presumed mouthpiece of today's "progressive" Democrats.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

A Gentle Folly

This is a critical moment for all of us. (4+ / 0-)

And the work is gentle. Many people whom we will need as our allies have been heavily invested in resisting impeachment to this point.

I have found much more success on the front page with laying out the case and leaving the conclusion obvious but unstated -- or at least very gently stated.

There has been no shortage of blunter statements, and no shortage of people making them. But if you follow the tracks back, you will find that some of those voices making those statements were brought along both by circumstances on the ground, and by my having laid the case out in ways they ultimately could not overcome.

It hasn't worked for everyone. But it has been more successful among resisters than has blunt force, to date.

Waste more of your day at The Next Hurrah.

by Kagro X on Thu Jun 28, 2007 at 09:21:47 AM PDT

He is, of course, talking about making the case for impeachment in his diary about the latest subpoenas announced by the Dems.

And, speaking of subpoenas and their "power":

WASHINGTON - President Bush, moving toward a constitutional showdown with Congress, asserted executive privilege Thursday and rejected lawmakers' demands for documents that could shed light on the firings of federal prosecutors.

Bush's attorney told Congress the White House would not turn over subpoenaed documents for former presidential counsel Harriet Miers and former political director Sara Taylor. Congressional panels want the documents for their investigations of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales' stewardship of the Justice Department, including complaints of undue political influence.

The Democratic chairmen of the two committees seeking the documents accused Bush of stonewalling and disdain for the law, and said they would press forward with enforcing the subpoenas.
Thursday was the deadline for surrendering the documents. The White House also made clear that Miers and Taylor would not testify next month, as directed by the subpoenas, which were issued June 13. The stalemate could end up with House and Senate contempt citations and a battle in federal court over separation of powers.

All fine and good but how long will that take? Bush and Cheney could be history by the time a federal court case is decided - if one is even brought forward by the Dems.

But, go gently with the talk of impeachment.

As one commenter said over at dkos, he has "all the time in the world."

The thing is, America doesn't.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

June 26th was Torture Awareness Day: Where were the Big Box Blogs?

One wonders. Finding front-page content (even diaries for that matter) of relevance regarding one of the major human rights crises of our times would be like searching for a needle in a haystack.

Let's see. MyDD? Silence. Just polls, polls, and more polls.

My Left Wing? One can hear the sound of crickets chirping.

Daily Kos? Barely a peep. The closest we get to anything from the front-pagers is a brief mention of one of Valtin's diaries (hell, might as well go to his blog which should be a must-read to begin with).

Booman Tribune? Be thankful for Steven D., who does at least cover some anti-torture news; and a slightly belated post from Larry Johnson.

I might quote something from a blogger called Death and the Maiden - a new (as of this month) anti-torture blog - that pretty well sums things up:
What? You didn't know? You haven't heard?
Yeah. How 'bout that, huh?
Today's the tenth "International Day in Support of Victims of Torture." It was designated by the UN General Assembly as an annual commemoration of the ratification of the UN Convention Against Torture (20 years ago today). But apparently not too many, including the United Nations, give a rat's ass. You won't hear about it from the mainstream media, and the UN didn't even bother to put it on this year's calendar.
Disappeared. The International Day in Support of Desaparecidos is now itself a desaparecido.
Almost disappeared, that is. The good folks at Torture Abolition and Survivors Support Coalition have events scheduled in Washington DC. Take a look at their web page and sign on to their petition to repeal the 2006 Military Commissions Act.
And after you do that, start making every day Torture Awareness Day in your local community. Check the links in the sidebar of this blog. They have lots of good ideas to help you get started. Don't let torture awareness slide down the chupadero.
Just sayin'.


As one who's name in on the list of contributers to this blog, who remembers well what it once was, and who considered it's founder, Ductape, a personal friend, I am not ok with letting this blog die a long, lingering, messy death.

This was never intended to be some online back alley where individuals drag each other to beat each other up. It once had the purpose of bringing all of us who didn't "fit well " on the mainstream blogs together, so we could discuss and learn from meta issues and how things are out there for all of us who are not easily accepted elsewhere..(us "others") I followed friends here who had been kicked out of other places, because I valued them so much, (whether I always agreed with them or not) and did not want to lose them, ever.

Thats not what this blog is anymore and it hasn't been that for a long time now. To see it deteriorate as it has feels very disrespectful (in my eyes) to it's absent founder, and to it's original worthy purpose. For me, it's just plain painful to watch this.

James and others have tried to keep it going, but it seems to me Mo Betta has completed the purpose for which it was conceived and it's time to let it go now with some dignity, and maybe even the honor of sharing of some of the good memories of what it's meant to those of us who were here in it's good days, when Ductape was still with us.

I hope those still on the masthead will respond to this, and others who once cared about this blog will share their feelings also, so we can make some kind of shared decision together. To perfectly frank, I have very little hope that we, as a group are likely to be able to work closely enough together to make this blog a viable useful place of discourse at this point.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

More Donkle Cluelessness

Starting with this news blurb:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The new Democratic-led Congress is drawing the ire of voters upset with its failure to quickly deliver on a promise to end the Iraq war.

This is reflected in polls that show Congress -- plagued by partisan bickering mostly about the war -- at one of its lowest approval ratings in a decade. Surveys find only about one in four Americans approves of it.

"I understand their disappointment," said Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid of Nevada. "We raised the bar too high."


"If Democrats fail to reverse course, the dynamics in the 2008 elections may shift significantly, allowing Republicans to run as the party of change ... only two years after Democrats successfully campaigned on that same theme," Senate Republican leaders told their ranks in a letter last week.
My emphasis added. Now of course, there are some Donkle partisans who indeed seem shocked (shocked, I tell ya) that the Dems could be swept into majorities in the House and Senate (the former with a solid majority, the latter with a much more tenuous grip on power) and then sit on their arses rather than do something substantive to end the Iraq debacle, etc. A lot of it amounts to many of the Dems being on the same page as the Rethugs when it comes to the maintenance of empire, but I digress. Get past the shock and outrage that a number of disappointed voters are expressing via the internet tubes and we can find a number of die-hard partisans to tell us that everything will be just peachy-keen.

Example 1:
67. I say this is BS

The approval rating of Congress is down because the Republic [sic] senators are standing in the way of ending the war and real progress. Republic [sic] legislators act as if they are not involved in this support of the Iraq occupation, as if they hadn't been involved in rubber stamping all things bush for years. Rove managed to rig just enough senate seats to split the senate and keep the "Do Nothing Congress" as a shield.

If we got all these republic [sic] politicians out of the way, we could make some progress. Republic politicians are standing in the way of progress and are trying to blame Democratic leaders for their rubber stamp of all things bush.
Yeah, it's all the Rethugs' fault for the Dimocrat cave-in on the supplemental war funding bill, the failure to get a no-confidence vote on AG Gonzo, the failure to impeach the Lush/Zany regime, etc.

Example 2:
54. I thought I'd heard everything in the twilight zone of disillusionment...

"If Democrats fail to reverse course, the dynamics in the 2008 elections may shift significantly, allowing Republicans to run as the party of change ... only two years after Democrats successfully campaigned on that same theme," Senate Republican leaders told their ranks in a letter last week.

Give those "Senate Republican leaders" a big dose of reality.

I'm disgusted as anyone that the boy king of corruption has been given a free ride, but the wrath should be also be directed at these "Senate Republican leaders" and their rubber-stamping yes-men for the boy king. Get real.

(Please, Al Gore & Wes Clark: step up to the plate; I've got lots of enthusiasm bottled up with nowhere to go.)
This commenter is slightly more sane, but still all blame on the GOP, and then some wishful thinking that Al Gore and war criminal Wes Clark will "step up to the plate"?

Example 3:
8. bullshit

the rubber stamp republicans are blocking everything.
Keep telling yourself that, kiddo.

Example 4:
2. I'm withholding judgment until September

when Stupid has to come begging for his WAH again. If the Democrats don't point to the unmet benchmarks from May as proof that the war is an unwinnable fiasco and insist on a timetable for withdrawal, they will be finished. They will lose in 2008.

It doesn't matter how many times Stupid vetoes those timetables.

They have to be sent and the Democrats have to insist upon them.

If they don't, people will stay home in 2008 and the fundies will control another election.
At least this one gets that disillusioned voters will sit out 2008. Whether enough sit out to actually cost a Donkle victory at the polls is another matter, as I suspect a substantial number of the currently "disappointed" will go on believing that if only their party has larger majorities that suddenly we'll get a more "progressive" domestic and foreign policy.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Part of the problem

This diary led to this exchange (among many others). Among the Manichean Donkle mindguards is Elise, who sez:
There are rules at this site. If you can't support Democrats getting elected- find a site that will agree with your silliness and go there.
The thing of it is, as several commentors noted, there is a strong undercurrent of frustration with the Donkle status quo. Sweeping that frustration under the rug, preventing an honest discussion of that frustration, will not make it go away. Rather it will lead to some very surprised Big Orange denizens come November 2008 when election results don't quite break their way.

Just sayin'.

Hat tip to outofwater at Marisacat's blog.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Inane commentary of the week award

John Arivosis of Americablog deserves the honor:
Dennis Kucinich and Gravel are just annoying.
Sez you. Any thoughts about what either one of them had to say? Didn't think so.
Yeah, I get it, some of you like Kucinich. And that's nice. Joe likes his dog Boomer too.
Patronize much? Again, any thoughts on the content of Kucinich's remarks at the debate?
It doesn't mean he should be on stage with the real candidates. Kucinich has zero chance of winning, as does Gravel - they shouldn't be on the stage taking time from the serious candidates.
On the contrary - Kucinich and Gravel are arguably the only serious candidates there (in terms of saying something). Oh wait - John means "serious" in terms of raising gobs of corporate cash and playing "emperor" should any of those goons actually get "elected." My bad.
Though, oddly, and disturbingly, a number of us at our debate party last night found ourselves agreeing with Gravel repeatedly. It was creepy.
Like, oh my gawd! Like, the next thing you know, we might be agreeing with the person who called orange the new pink (and whoever said that was like totally deranged). Ewww.