Democrats & Liberals Archives

February 2004 Archives

February 29, 2004

How well do we know the man behind the curtain?

Recently, much speculation on whether President Bush is giving serious consideration to dropping his Veep off the 2004 ticket has been making the rounds. Considering the herculean efforts of the current Administration in keeping the Vice President out of the spotlight while utilizing his considerable power connections, why all the sudden clamor?

Well, it seems a charge involving Cheney and his tenure at Halliburton as CEO is gaining ground. The allegation is that a 180 million dollar bribe between the former Nigerian government and Halliburton took place during the years 1995-2002 (Cheney was chief executive officer from 1995-2000, the majority of the time the seedy practice would have occurred), and may well be the catalyst for examining what Cheney's role will be next election.

» Continue reading "How well do we know the man behind the curtain?"

Posted by tamsen at 5:51 PM

February 28, 2004

An Acceptance Speech At Ground Zero? Talk About Poor Taste

According to a GOP insider, President Bush may well be giving his acceptance speech during the 2004 Republican National Convention at Ground Zero.

And Republicans say the Democrats have no shame.

As reported on The Hill (and discussed on Calpundit and Columbia Political Review), the September GOP convention in New York City could include a number of off-site activities outside Madison Square Gardens including a possible Bush acceptance speech at Ground Zero. This is sure to infuriate survivors of the attack and 9-11 victims' families.

» Continue reading "An Acceptance Speech At Ground Zero? Talk About Poor Taste"

Posted by at 1:50 AM

February 27, 2004

Political Humor: Defensive of Marriage

"Marriage should be defined by the people - not by the courts." --George W. Bush

Mob rule is finally being considered more important than the minor opinion of the learned. I love it. I don't think gays should be able to get married - and what I think now matters.

I have some ideas about other people that shouldn't be able to get married:

» Continue reading "Political Humor: Defensive of Marriage"

Posted by at 5:43 PM

February 26, 2004

The New Millenium

We live in strange times. Here we are at the beginning of a millennium, more or less, and there are two hot topics:

1. Whether gays and lesbians should be allowed to marry.

2. Whether the Jews killed Jesus, or more generally, the significance of a man (?) being nailed to a piece of wood two thousand years ago.

Both of these topics are compatible with being near the start of a new millennium. The question is, which one? Are we living in an age of medieval superstition or post-religious libertarianism? As we shall see, it is not surprising that these topics are coming along at the same time.

» Continue reading "The New Millenium"

Posted by Woody Mena at 10:12 AM

Eyes On The Prize

I have recently (and rather reluctantly) participated in the ongoing gay marriage debate. In a number of web postings, I have tried to impart what I considered valuable input from the vantage point of an engaged and concerned gay man. I framed gay marriage as a modern day civil rights struggle, yet I endorsed the compromise allowing civil unions. I cautioned against, but knew it was almost certain President Bush would soon endorse the amendment to ban gay marriage.

Since hearing the news, I have run the gamut of emotions: sadness, anger, cynicism and frustration. After taking note of the news accounts, I went to the web to gage the reaction of friends, some insightful weblogger pals, WatchBlog.com, a few news oriented message boards, etc. Surprisingly, as a result, I am now heartened, emboldened and even more determined to do my part to fight such intolerance and discrimination.

» Continue reading "Eyes On The Prize"

February 25, 2004

Kerry takes Idaho, Utah, and Hawaii

Sen. Kerry won the Idaho and Hawaii Caucuses and Utah Democratic Primaries with 50% or more in each state's contest. Sen. Edwards came in second in Idaho and Utah and Rep. Kucinich came in second in Hawaii.

Next up is Super Tuesday! Featuring primaries in California, Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

» Continue reading "Kerry takes Idaho, Utah, and Hawaii"

Posted by Anthony at 11:38 PM

Conflict and Politics

All too often, we present controversies in this nation as a matter of Good versus Evil and the thing we're opposing as a dragon to be slain. Bush and others are masters of this game, but they're only following the examples of others in this.

It seems the easy way to fight for what's right. Find your villain, oppose that villain. But does that really characterize the roots of positive change in this country? Or is it an illusion that wastes our efforts on easy victories, and easier stalemates?

» Continue reading "Conflict and Politics"

They do say "Make it your way"

Perhaps taking Burger King's "Make it Your Way" slogan a bit too literally, the latest Economic Report of the President suggested that maybe fast-food jobs be reclassified as manufacturing jobs. I guess when one can't create new jobs in high profile industries, the new game is to reclassify other, less attractive jobs into that sector.

In response to this suggestion, Congressman John Dingall (MI) wrote a letter to Chairman of the Coucil of Economic Advisors Gregory Mankiw suggesting that Mayor McCheese be considered for the newly created Manufacturing Czar position.

Posted by blipsman at 11:34 AM

February 24, 2004

Time for a Constitutional Change

I think it is time for a change in our constitution, for too long have the powers of the majority to oppress the minorities of this nation prevailed. It is time to press for a constitutional amendment that denies any majority in this nation the right to oppress by means of law or custom the equal rights of any minority.

» Continue reading "Time for a Constitutional Change"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 7:43 PM

Outraged

"Today, I call upon the Congress to promptly pass and to send to the states for ratification an amendment to our Constitution defining and protecting marriage as a union of a man and woman as husband and wife."

President George W. Bush February 24, 2004

It's not often that a politician pisses me off so much that it actually makes my Tourette's ticks act up, but I'm twitching like crazy over here. I honestly do not understand how anyone can say that this is not an attempt to mix church and state in an unimaginable affront to the freedoms that America is supposed to provide her citizens! » Continue reading "Outraged"

Posted by at 6:32 PM

Pres. Bush calls for constitutional amendment against gay marriage

Pres. Bush called for a constitutional amendment against gay marriage today, blaming "activist judges", the Massachusettes Supreme Court, and the mayor of San Francisco, among others, for "attempting to change the most fundamental institution of civilization."

Bush calls for same-sex marriage-ban amendment:

"After more than two centuries of American jurisprudence and millennia of human experience, a few judges and local authorities are presuming to change the most fundamental institution of civilization. Their actions have created confusion on an issue that requires clarity."
» Continue reading "Pres. Bush calls for constitutional amendment against gay marriage"

Posted by Anthony at 10:48 AM

Edwards picks up two blog endorsements

Two popular political weblogs, Daily Kos and Agonist, decided today to endorse Sen. John Edwards for president.

Daily Kos: Edwards for President:

I want something else. I want someone who symbolizes the future of our party. Someone whose rhetoric inspires, rather than bores. Someone who has run a positive campaign worthy of praise, rather than someone who has used slash and burn campaign tactics against members of his own party. Someone who people actually like, rather than support for some bizarre notion of "electability".
» Continue reading "Edwards picks up two blog endorsements"

Posted by Anthony at 12:19 AM

February 23, 2004

More Terrorists Among Us

I guess that hanging around the Bush White House long enough makes you see every conflict in stark, good vs. evil terms.:

Education Secretary Rod Paige called the nation's largest teachers union a "terrorist organization" Monday, taking on the 2.7-million-member National Education Association early in the presidential election year. Paige's comments, made to the nation's governors at a private White House meeting, were denounced by union president Reg Weaver as well as prominent Democrats. Paige said he was sorry, and the White House said he was right to say so.

Clearly, if we don't switch to a voucher system then the "terrorists" have already won.

Posted by Woody Mena at 8:04 PM

Talking to Ralph on the Big Phone

So Ralph, you’re running for President again as an Independent this time. That means that no party will be left to benefit from your attempt to overturn government of the Corporation by the Corporation and for the Corporation. It also means that you might aid four more years of Bush in the White House. I understand your frustration with the Democrats, I am every bit as frustrated at their dedication to their corporate sponsors as you are, possibly even more so. Your contributions to the ongoing war between corporate power and the power of the people have been duly noted in my life.

» Continue reading "Talking to Ralph on the Big Phone"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 5:11 PM

Politics can be funny, too!

Politics doesn't always have to be serious business. Sure, a $7 trillion deficit and a net loss of 2 million jobs probably doesn't bring a smile to your face, but you'll have a chance to take care of that in Novemeber.

Until then, here's two of the most creative political humor websites discovered to date:

» Continue reading "Politics can be funny, too!"

Posted by Anthony at 9:00 AM

February 22, 2004

Gay Marriage: A Modern Day Civil Rights Struggle?

As a politically engaged, openly gay man, I have endorsed the compromise that would create recognized civil unions, as a way of ending this troublesome debate on gay marriage. By doing so, we would take away a potentially potent ‘wedge’ issue from Bush and the Republicans to exploit. I also argued, that the day civil unions are made law would not be the end of the struggle towards full gay marriage rights. You see, Rosa Parks’ and Dr. King’s successful bus boycott in 50’s Birmingham, Ala., was not the end of the civil rights movement, but yet a major battle won in an ongoing conflict.

By passing on this compromise (and hard fought victory), we risk setting into motion new adversarial fronts: a discriminatory Constitutional amendment drive, endorsed by a reluctant President who capitulates to his social Conservative base; alienating and angering state legislatures who will no doubt repeat the divisive session we witnessed in Massachusetts; and, angering and alienating a growingly sympathetic public, eventually fed up with what seems like a frivolous repeat of the Florida recount.

» Continue reading "Gay Marriage: A Modern Day Civil Rights Struggle?"

Why I won't just "Move On" about the National Guard issue

Recently a visitor to "different strings suggested in comments that I "move on" in regards to Bush's military record and I know others who are questioning the President's record are often told the same thing. So, should we "move on"? No. Moving on is the last thing we need to do when it comes to Bush's National Guard service.

The president, his administration and their supporters have made a habit of accusing anyone who disagrees with their policies - and in particular with their war - of being "unpatriotic," yet when Bush had an opportunity to show his own patriotism when the US was at war in Vietnam (which was also an unpopular war fought on the basis of reasoning VERY similar to that used to justify the Iraqi war - the idea that changing one government in a region could lead to changes in many - if not all - of the other governments), he neither volunteered to serve in the active duty army nor choose to face the same risk of being drafted that most other men of his generation faced. Instead, he made use of his father's connection in order to get a slot in the Texas Air National Guard, and then failed to fulfill his commitment.

» Continue reading "Why I won't just "Move On" about the National Guard issue"

Posted by at 8:20 PM

Will Nader run? Today's the day.

Most people remember Ralph Nader as that guy who ran for president against Al Gore and George W. Bush in the messiest presidential election in our nation's history. Nader was the Green Party candidate "outsider", who ultimately only managed to garner a few percentage points in each state, but somehow may have made the difference in key states by drawing Democratic-leaning voters' votes from Gore in seminal states like Florida.

Well, the latest buzz around the nation -- television, the Internet, news radio, and elsewhere -- is whether Ralph Nader will announce he is throwing his hat in the ring to run as an Independent candidate for president on Sunday morning's "Meet the Press". In a moment, we will look at who thinks Nader's in and who thinks Nader's out. But just before we look at that, I will offer my educated guess of what will happen: Ralph Nader will, in a number of hours, announce he will indeed enter the race.

» Continue reading "Will Nader run? Today's the day."

Posted by Anthony at 3:45 AM

Bush Needs To Take A Recess From Recess Appointments

President Bush made yet another recess appointment Friday, this time placing Alabama AG William H. Pryor, Jr.--a darling of the religious right and ultra-conservatives everywhere, on the U.S. Of Appeals For the 11th Circuit. Pryor, one of six ultra-conservative judicial appellate nominees being blocked by the U.S. Senate, will serve until 2005.

So, what's up with Bush's penchant for bypassing the Senate and securing his most controversial nominees get their posts through recess appointments? That's a good question.

» Continue reading "Bush Needs To Take A Recess From Recess Appointments"

Posted by at 3:33 AM

February 21, 2004

Trade Jobs for Education

Where is the Win/Win deal that will resolve the jobs deficit and put trade back where it belongs in the grand scheme of things in our economy? By win/win I mean everybody wins, including those in the newly growing economies in India and China and those in the parts of the world previously known as industrialized.

It is not in the protection of jobs here that such a prospect can exist, although it will require either slower job losses or faster job creation than we have seen lately. It is not in the creation of an economy here and elsewhere in the more developed world that is dependent on other nations for the production of everything. It is not in the reduction of middle class programmers into McDonalds’ burger flippers as we have done with production workers in the recent past. So where is this grand idea that combines growth in the poorer nations with prosperity here and in Europe? If you think that is an easy question to answer you are delusional beyond anything drugs can help reduce.

» Continue reading "Trade Jobs for Education"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 11:51 AM

Political Hate Speech

David Neiwert, a freelance journalist based in Seattle, writes about political hate speech and it's negative effects in an interesting essay on his weblog, Orcinus. It's definitely worth checking out.

Political hate speech:

Talk like this has always been around, of course. But what concerns me is the volume and breadth of it. It's ranging from everyday encounters and e-mails like this to "best-selling" pundits like Sean Hannity and Michael Savage. And I don't expect it to improve if the Kerry-vs.-Bush poll numbers maintain their current status. Indeed, listening to right-wing talk radio, I'm beginning to detect a real fear, sometimes bubbling up in little frantic moments. This makes them, in my estimation, very dangerous.
Posted by Anthony at 1:06 AM

February 20, 2004

Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics

Has anyone else noticed how George W. Bush seems to have a knack for making things up to support his agenda, knowing that while the media will be all over the initial news, they will only cover the revised story in passing?

Bush went on TV last spring stating that "Intelligence gathered by this and other governments leaves no doubt that the Iraq regime continues to possess and conceal some of the most lethal weapons ever devised" and that because of this they were an imminent threat to American security. Using this justification, he led us into a war in which 500 American troops have lost their lives and no WMDs have been found. Bush so much as admitted this, and then again used his latest justification for war in Iraq--the liberation of the Iraqi people.

» Continue reading "Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics"

Posted by blipsman at 1:28 PM

February 19, 2004

Strange Bedfellows and Discipline

Watching the Sierra Club and the United Auto workers crawl into bed together, fully clothed I assure you, we wouldn’t want Michael Powell to investigate us for wardrobe failure, is a study in cautious agreement. The process of defining fuel consumption standards for automobiles is a contentious issue for this nation. We are willing, If the Bush Budget prevails, to discipline the poor by putting them out on the streets by the hundreds of thousands. We are not willing to discipline automobile producers by requiring responsible fuel use standards that may be all that save the US Auto Industry when the oil gets scarcer.

» Continue reading "Strange Bedfellows and Discipline"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 10:03 AM

Kerry narrowly wins Wisconsin, Dean ends campaign

Sen. Kerry beat Sen. Edwards in the Wisconsin primary by only a few percentage points in a primary opened to all of Wisconsin's voters, regardless of party. Dean's disappointing third place finish causes Dean to drop out.

Kerry wins Wisconsin, Edwards surges:

"Sen. John Kerry beat back a strong challenge from Sen. John Edwards to win the Wisconsin presidential primary on Tuesday. "My friends, tonight I say to all of America, get ready, a new day is on the way," Kerry, a four-term senator from Massachusetts, told supporters gathered in Middleton, Wisconsin.
» Continue reading "Kerry narrowly wins Wisconsin, Dean ends campaign"

Posted by Anthony at 12:26 AM

February 18, 2004

Like It Or Not, We Owe A Lot To Howard Dean

Whether Democrats want to acknowledge it or not, we owe a lot to Howard Dean.

Although I've never been a Dean supporter, I must admit that I felt a sense of sadness today when Dean announced he was ending his presidential campaign.

How a campaign that showed such promise could end up so far off track will be a case study for political science students and woulld-be political consultants for years to come. But, how and why the campaign got off track and why it ultimately was unsuccessful (at least, in securing the nomination for Dean) isn't as important now as what Democrats can learn from his campaign.

» Continue reading "Like It Or Not, We Owe A Lot To Howard Dean"

Posted by at 8:51 PM

Source: Dean to suspend campaign

CNN is reporting that Howard Dean will suspend his campaign. The Democratic front-runner heading into the primaries, he has yet to win any of the 17 primaries. In suspending his campaign, he plans to leave his name on the ballots but will no longer actively campaign.

Now that the race has been all but conceded to John Kerry, many will speculate on what caused Dean's drop in support just as primary season started. Was it the electibility issue? Was it his personality? Was his famous legion of supporters too busy preacing to the converted rather than reaching out beyond their blog readers and MeetUp participants? Was it simply the primary election schedule? He drops out before large Democratic states like New York, California and Illinois had their say.

» Continue reading "Source: Dean to suspend campaign"

Posted by blipsman at 11:23 AM

A SNOWY DAY IN MAINE

Today, I will officially retire the ‘Howard Dean For President’ banner from my weblog’s homepage. Although, John Kerry has won 16 of the 18 primary contests, he has secured less than half of the delegates needed for the nomination. However, even after erasing the line in the sand in front of the Wisconsin primary, Dean has as much of a chance at the nomination as has Dick Cheney being proven right on the existence of WMDs’ in Iraq.

I got a good seat upfront on the Dean bandwagon some 18 months ago. On first hearing of his candidacy, I assumed (correctly) a Vermont Democrat would stand out and sharply contrast opposite party stalwarts like Kerry, Gephardt and Lieberman. Every early cable news segment on Dean never failed to mention his support of the Vermont gay civil union, which is now law. Then, one evening, I actually saw and heard a 10 second sound-bite from one of his stump speeches – I was immediately smitten!

» Continue reading "A SNOWY DAY IN MAINE"

February 17, 2004

Was Iraq the First Time?

There's a kind of camera trick, where you zoom in on a subject while dollying out. The effect is one of having the background shift eerily, while the character remains pretty much the same size in frame. The trick was used in Vertigo, Jaws, ET, Apollo 13, GoodFellas, and a number of other films.

I got that same kind of disquieting feeling reading the essay "Mimic Men" in Molly Ivin's book Molly Ivins Can't Say That, Can She? when I came across a disturbing passage.

» Continue reading "Was Iraq the First Time?"

February 16, 2004

Dem Nominee Will Have To Fight Hard For The South

Regardless of whom the Democratic Party selects as its nominee for President this year, one thing is for certain: He'll have to fight hard to gain ground against Bush in the South.

As a guest columnist on Salon.com last week, Bill Maher noted:

"North Carolina Sen. John Edwards has a powerful argument in his bid to be the Democratic nominee when he says, 'What I give people is a candidate who can win everywhere in America.'"
» Continue reading "Dem Nominee Will Have To Fight Hard For The South"

Posted by at 8:47 PM

Fickle Facts and Weapons of Mass Distraction

It is a fact that the President changes his mind more than his critics give him credit for in their writings. In the endless attacks on him related to his adamant refusal to admit that the WMD did not exist the critics often miss the whole point. How this Administration approaches decisions is to make them based on one reason. When their proposed reason for making that decision proves obviously untrue, they change the reason, not the decision. Of course they continue to defend the original reason for their decision while changing the basis in the public’s eye.

This feat of legerdemain, the art of doing something invisible to the eye right out in public, is the one magic trick this Administration has mastered. The switch in the case of Iraq was not smooth, some of us followed it. The bait was the WMD the switch was the evil of Saddam and Congress was fooled enough by the WMD threat to grant W his war powers. Now he is a “War President”.

» Continue reading "Fickle Facts and Weapons of Mass Distraction"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 1:17 PM

Bill Bradley, Interns and Beer Commercials (Satire)

I have to say something about Howard Dean. What happened? Some people say it was the scream. Some people say it was bad press. Some people say it was the 'electability factor'. Some people think it was the Al Gore endorsement. I blame it all on Bill Bradley. I blame it on him because it is a theory that has yet to be explored. The way I figure it, the press likes to throw out the tallest candidate is most likely to win. Maybe it's the endorsement by the tallest ex-candidate that becomes the proverbial kiss of death to a current candidate. Just a thought.

Here's another: Clinton denied having sexual relations with his intern. He went through an impeachment trial because of it. Bush lies about WMD, rushes us into a war - killing God knows how many people - pissing off God knows how many of our allies - then gets to chose his own 'intelligence' panel ala the Warren commission?!? Independent commission means independent of the Bush administration.

» Continue reading "Bill Bradley, Interns and Beer Commercials (Satire)"

Posted by at 4:17 AM

February 15, 2004

Ralph, Don't Run

Ralph Nader is again exploring the idea of running for President in November's election. Hoping to avoid the unintended consequences Nader's candidacy had on the 2000 election, a grassroots campaign has begun to ask Nader to stay out of the 2004 race in order to remove George W. Bush from office. As the Ralph Don't Run site points out, with only 1% of Nader's votes in Florida, Gore would have won the state and Gore would be our president.

While I understand that there are platform differences between Nader's Green Party and the Democratic Party, their ideologies are much more closely alligned with each other than either party with the GOP. I think the overwhelming majority of both the Democrats and Greens want to see Bush out of office first and foremost. In the 2000 election, because progressive voters chose between two candiates, the minority of conservatives saw their candidate win the election. And the rest is history...

Posted by blipsman at 5:37 PM

February 14, 2004

Kerry wins D.C. and Nevada Primaries, Dean and Sharpton snag second

Sen. John Kerry pulled in more delegates as he came out on top of the Washington, D.C. and Nevada primaries today. Howard Dean came in second in Nevada, where Kerry received a whopping 63% of the vote. In D.C., Al Sharpton came in at second place with his highest percentage showing so far, just 2 percentage points above Dean. John Edwards performance didn't follow the trend of many past contests, as he didn't even appear on the map today.

Tuesday is the Wisconsin primary, one Dean has said is a must win, although he has said that he will continue to campaign regardless of the result. He hopes a win there will propel him into wins on Super Tuesday 2, with several state contests.

» Continue reading "Kerry wins D.C. and Nevada Primaries, Dean and Sharpton snag second"

Posted by Anthony at 11:08 PM

February 13, 2004

CBS pulls Bush Administration Ads

Showing that political party doesn't matter when it comes to their advertisement policy, CBS pulled Bush Administration ads about their new Medicare proposals after some Democrats complained they were too partisan.

CBS Pulls Ads on Medicare Prescriptions:

CBS said yesterday it has stopped airing a federally funded advertisement, placed by the Bush administration to promote the new Medicare prescription drug law, out of concern the content may be too political.
» Continue reading "CBS pulls Bush Administration Ads"

Posted by Anthony at 11:30 PM

Honoring our Brothers in Arms

I have my own opinions about Vietnam. Having spent two years in the Army from 1963 to 1965 I did my duty to the nation and served without any reservations that came from the war. Later I protested against our military folly and the failure of our leaders but never, ever denigrated my brothers in arms for their service in that war. I knew a lot of young men who dodged the war in one way or another. I was willing to go, but never was called on to fight in Vietnam during my time in uniform. I am no hero but I know one when I see one, and John Kerry is one twice over.

» Continue reading "Honoring our Brothers in Arms"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 12:10 PM

The Day Ain't Over Yet

I know I keep on saying, we shouldn't be in this war. Anybody who has read anything I've written on this site knows that my opinion of this war ranks somewhere between open cesspits and seventies casual wear.

That said, the idea of leaving this war without successfully reconstructing Iraq ranks somewhere below or within that open cesspit, and wouldn't be much out of place with the rest of the contents. Unfortunately, the Bush timetable, in fact the entire way this war was prepared, carried out, and mopped up so far, has put our country in danger of doing just that.

» Continue reading "The Day Ain't Over Yet"

February 12, 2004

Gen. Clark to endorse Sen. Kerry

Former presidential candidate Wesley Clark will through his support behind front-runner John Kerry tomorrow in Wisconsin.

Wesley Clark to endorse Democratic front-runner John Kerry:

"John Kerry lined up the support of campaign dropout Wesley Clark on Thursday, hoping to pre-empt any move by his remaining Democratic presidential rivals to sneak up on him in next week's Wisconsin primary.
» Continue reading "Gen. Clark to endorse Sen. Kerry"

Posted by Anthony at 6:37 PM

Possible connection between Saddam and Osama

In today's IHT, William Safire reports that a hard link may have been found between Iraq and Al Qaeda. His article claims that a "terrorist courier" was found with a message that 'demolishes the repeated claim of Bush critics that there was never a "clear link" between Saddam and Osama bin Laden.' I'm sure that this report will be used to bolster Bush's claims that the war was justified as a battle in the "War On Terrorism," but it shouldn't: Mr. Safire's interpretation is puzzling.

According to the article, the message discovered is a request from Iraqi insurgents to Al Qaeda for assistance in planning and fighting a civil war against the American forces and American-led civil government. Which means that the only connection this supports is a post-war request for help.

» Continue reading "Possible connection between Saddam and Osama"

Posted by LawnBoy at 3:54 PM

February 10, 2004

Gen. Wesley Clark to drop out of presidential race

Gen. Wesley Clark will drop out of the presidential race, the AP and CNN are now reporting. Clark will make the official announcement tomorrow in a speech from his home state of Arkansas. Clark only managed third place finishes in tonight's Virginia and Tennessee primaries.

"Gen. Clark has decided to leave the race," said Clark spokesman Matt Bennett. "I think probably the biggest reason is the tremendous momentum that Sen. Kerry built coming out of the Iowa and New Hampshire races."

"The mountain got too steep to climb." (source)

Posted by Anthony at 11:12 PM

February 9, 2004

Kerry wins Washington, Michigan, and Maine caucuses, Dean a strong second

John Kerry won Washington, Michigan, and Maine caucuses over the weekend, adding more delegates to his campaign. But, at the same time, Howard Dean scored stong second place finishes in all three states, continuing to add delegates supporting him. In fact, Dean has decided that he will stay on in this race past Wisconsin, after seeing such support over the weeked. After a call for money to air ads in Wisconsin, his campaign has received over a million dollars from his supporters.

» Continue reading "Kerry wins Washington, Michigan, and Maine caucuses, Dean a strong second"

Posted by Anthony at 5:30 PM

Let the Games Begin

The political Olympics of innuendo and candidate destruction, our Presidential Campaign, is now officially opened for business. Witch hunting was all the rage in Europe during the protestant reformation. Every significant cultural change in the world has been accompanied by some sort of movement that opposed its development. Politics as usual in Spain during the Protestant Reformation meant the Grand Inquisition, royal corruption and destruction of any drive toward reformist openness of thought.

» Continue reading "Let the Games Begin"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 12:52 PM

February 8, 2004

Why the Democratic Nominee Needs a Black Running Mate

(Okay..so this post is actually based off an article I wrote earlier this month but I think you'll find it quite provocative nonetheless.)

John Kerry is the new "Frontrunner." Pundits and rank-and-file Democrats alike are now thinking about whom the junior senator from Massachusetts should choose as his running mate. Some say Edwards is ideal because of his Southern roots and clean image. Others favor Gephardt due to his perceived ability to deliver Missouri. While Clark’s military credentials make him a popular choice.

Each of these men would enhance the Democratic presidential ticket. But why is the field of potential veeps so narrow? More importantly, why is it so devoid of color? Why not a Black running mate?

» Continue reading "Why the Democratic Nominee Needs a Black Running Mate"

Posted by at 8:27 PM

I must have mis-heard

From the NBC transcript of the February 8th Meet the Press Interview with President Bush

Russert: But would you allow pay stubs, tax records, anything to show that you were serving during that period?
President Bush: Yeah. If we still have them, but I you know, the records are kept in Colorado, as I understand, and they scoured the records.
And I'm just telling you, I did my duty, and it's politics, you know, to kind of ascribe all kinds of motives to me. But I have been through it before. I'm used to it. What I don't like is when people say serving in the Guard may not be a true service.
Russert: Would you authorize the release of everything to settle this?
President Bush: Yes, absolutely.
We did so in 2000, by the way.
OK, I admit it. With everyone clambering for the President to release his military records, I just must have missed it when it happened 4 years ago.

» Continue reading "I must have mis-heard"

Posted by Al Maline at 7:45 PM

February 7, 2004

The Breast Menace (Satire)

The partial exposure of Janet Jackson’s breast at the Super Bowl has sent ripples across Washington, DC and the rest of the country as Bush administration officials struggle to cope with what is being called “the breast menace”. President Bush chose a topless beach in Miami to formally declare “war” on the problem. “We will not waver. We will not tire. We will not falter,” the President promised. “My God,” he added, “look at those things!”

Attorney General John Ashcroft used the strongest language to describe the breast threat. “What happened at the Super Bowl is nothing less than glandular terrorism. When God-fearing people watch that game, they expect to see sweaty men banging into each other and patting one another’s buttocks in a comradely manner. The don’t want to see a harlot’s repulsive bosom,” Ashcroft explained, then excused himself to go to the restroom.

» Continue reading "The Breast Menace (Satire)"

Posted by Woody Mena at 6:32 PM

February 6, 2004

Rep. Gephardt endorses Sen. Kerry

Dick Gephardt couldn't win the Democratic nomination after being decimated in Iowa, but today he announced he thinks John Kerry can win the nomination and the presidency in November.

Gephardt endorses Kerry:

'"To beat George Bush, we need a leader who can go toe-to-toe with George Bush in these difficult, dangerous times on national security, toe-to-toe," Gephardt said in a rally with Kerry in Warren."'
» Continue reading "Rep. Gephardt endorses Sen. Kerry"

Posted by Anthony at 2:53 PM

February 4, 2004

Electability

Imagine a president who was elected with less votes than his opponent.

Imagine a president who has turned a 200 billion dollar surplus into a 500 billion dollar deficit in three years.

Imagine a president who used inconclusive intelligence to exaggerate a risk and lead a nation into its first preemptive war.

» Continue reading "Electability"

Posted by Al Maline at 10:25 PM

The Crystal Ball Dilemma

The Bush Administration, so far as I can tell, wants to spin the intelligence failure of Iraq's unconventional weapons threat instead of getting its act together.

If that was not the case, why is George Tenet set to give a speech saying intelligence is not a crystal ball? Is the Bush Administration going to make the claim like others have made in the party that because intelligence is never a hundred percent, we should tolerate massive failures of intelligence like this one?

If so, I couldn't be happier. Don't be surprised. The Bush administration, by doing this, has planted itself right in the middle of a real unfavorable Catch-22.

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Dean Goes Down

The big story last night wasn’t Kerry doing well, which was expected, or Edwards and Clark coming in first in their must-win states. The most significant development, in my opinion, was the spectacularly bad showing by Howard Dean. Let’s look state by state (Source: CNN – 9 am CST):

South Carolina – %5, fifth place
Delaware - %10, fourth place
Missouri – %9, third place
Oklahoma - %4, fifth place
Arizona - %14, third place
North Dakota – %12, third place
New Mexico - %16, third place

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Posted by Woody Mena at 10:37 AM

Using Our Power Abroad Effectively

The interesting facts of life are always hard won. We are paying for a military force that is thirty years behind, in its use of commonly available technology which can be used to replace foreign bases. Our military presence in the world is based on military doctrines as old as the concept of Empire. We can now project effective force anywhere in the world within twenty four hours without maintaining all our current bases. These are bases where our military interacts with civilian populations that are often hostile. Hostility in civilian populations does seem to grow over time with exposure to our military personnel. It always has when any Empire’s warriors trod on the same ground as their subjects in their vassal states.

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Posted by Henri Reynard at 10:33 AM

Super Tuesday #1 Results: Kerry grabs 5 states

Super Tuesday #1 saw seven state primaries and caucuses where voters chose their Democratic nominee for president. Sen. John Kerry won in Arizona, Missouri, New Mexico, and Delaware. Sen. John Edwards won in his home state of South Carolina. And Gen. Wesley Clark scored his first primary win in Oklahoma by less than a thousand votes over Edwards.

When it comes to delegates, Gov. Howard Dean won delegates with third place finishes in Arizona and New Mexico. Clark also got some more delegates with second place finishes in Arizona, New Mexico, and North Dakota. Kerry picked up delegates in each of the seven states, including Oklahoma (3rd place) and South Carolina (2nd place), and Edwards won some more with second place finishes in Oklahoma and Missouri.

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Posted by Anthony at 3:00 AM

February 3, 2004

Sen. Joseph Lieberman drops out of presidential race

Sen. Joseph Lieberman dropped out of the presidential race after a poor showing in Delaware's primary, a contest he had said was a must-win:

"After looking at the returns and speaking with my family and campaign team, I have decided tonight to end my quest for the presidency of the United States of America." (source)
White House 2004: Democratic Candidates. Graphic courtesy Anthony Cantiello.
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Posted by Anthony at 9:14 PM

February 2, 2004

Sizing up the Survivors, Part II

Tomorrow the meat grinder grinds on. Here is how the allegedly serious candidates look right now:

Wesley Clark is... odd. I choose that word carefully. “Weird” is too strong”, “quirky” too weak. It took me a long time to reach this conclusion. Clark has an impressive resume and does not show any obvious signs of insanity. But when you take into account his blank (sometimes Quaylesque) expression, his rapid-fire flip-flops about the Iraq war, his inappropriate rank-pulling, and his other various quirks, you get the feeling he is not totally connected to the world that most of us are living in. Don’t get me wrong -- I would choose him over Bush in a nanosecond. But comparing him to the rest of the Democratic candidates, I have to say, “No thanks.” Must-win state: I know Oklahoma. I’ve worked with Oklahoma. If a general from Arkansas can’t win in Oklahoma, then he’s doomed.

» Continue reading "Sizing up the Survivors, Part II"

Posted by Woody Mena at 11:40 PM