Democrats & Liberals Archives

September 2004 Archives

September 30, 2004

Wrong War, Wrong Time, Wrong President

Congratulations to Jim Lehrer for running a great debate; great questions, great follow-up and great control.

Congratulations to President Bush for showing up.

Congratulations to John Kerry for a masterful debate and for showing us a true president.

I’m not sure how the spin masters will turn this against Kerry, but Fox news is already leading the way.

Posted by Al Maline at 11:25 PM

Spins and Damn Spins

First off, thanks to Stephen for his post Reliable Principles, or Reliable Words?. The article he quotes is actually one of several recent ones that look past the spin and actually look at what Kerry has said about Iraq, and guess what, they all come to the same conclusion: Kerry has been completely consistent in his views on the current Iraq war. » Continue reading "Spins and Damn Spins"

Posted by William Cohen at 5:00 PM

How to Debate W

Tonight, John Kerry and George W. Bush finally face off in the first of three debates between the two Presidential nominees. Time to move beyond the mud-slinging of the past few weeks and actually discuss the issues important to the American voter.

Having debated W. during the 2000 election cycle, former Vice President Al Gore gives some advice concerning how to debate Bush.

» Continue reading "How to Debate W"

Posted by blipsman at 1:10 PM

Reliable Principles, or Reliable Words?

When the San Francisco Chronicle combed through 200 of Kerry's speeches and statements on Iraq, it found instances of "clumsy phrases and tortuously long explanations" that made Kerry's position difficult to follow. But it also found that "taken as a whole, Kerry has offered the same message ever since talk of attacking Iraq became a national conversation more than two years ago." The "Willie Horton" Ad Of 2004? » Continue reading "Reliable Principles, or Reliable Words?"

September 29, 2004

On Body Armor, Bush is Vulnerable

A consistently galling aspect of the Bush reelection campaign is its brazen attempts to tar Kerry in areas where any reasonable examination of the facts shows that Bush is the vulnerable one. It’s the concept of preemption applied to the campaign. It was the Bush administration that rushed to war and put our troops in the field in the spring of 2003 without the proper body armor.

» Continue reading "On Body Armor, Bush is Vulnerable"

Flip Flop

I recently came across this statement in an article about why the Atlantic alliance matters,

Skeptics question whether fixed relationships with traditional partners are really helpful in dealing with contemporary challenges; supporters argue that they continue to advance U.S. interests and are crucial components of a stable world order.
» Continue reading "Flip Flop"

September 28, 2004

Republican Gay Hypocrisy Hits Home - Again!

Seems the Republican/Conservative Hypocrisy Parade has just set-up temporary residence, here in Calumet City, Ill!! I do not know how in the heck blog pal Chillinois scope this out, but apparently Senate candidate Alan Keyes’ diatribe against Mary Cheney and the homosexual lifestyle, may have come from first hand knowledge.

» Continue reading "Republican Gay Hypocrisy Hits Home - Again!"

Kerry - Capable!

A joke I once heard (origin unknown) goes like this:

A Senator, responding to a reporters question about the difficulty in forming a piece of legislation, says “Well, it’s not rocket science.” Determined to find out how difficult rocket science is, asks one, and gets the response “It’s not has hard as brain surgery.” Continuing on by asking a Brain Surgeon, the reporter finds out that brain surgery is “difficult, but not as difficult as particle physics.”

» Continue reading "Kerry - Capable!"

Posted by Al Maline at 12:01 AM

September 27, 2004

What Do I Want Out of a President?

People want more than just negative stuff. I guess the extent I can be positive, when my candidate is a challenger, is to make my audience aware of what I see as the qualities I like in a president. And so, Let me share with you my ideas of those ideals, those exemplary qualities I seek.

» Continue reading "What Do I Want Out of a President?"

Race Tightening

The Time poll, which gave a Bush a double-digit lead among likely voters a couple of weeks ago, now has him leading by a mere 4%. Other polls from Zogby, Fox, and the Wall Street Journal also show a mere 2-4% lead. We have a race, folks!

Posted by Woody Mena at 9:19 AM

September 26, 2004

Love Amid the Ruins: A Modern Parable

This is my attempt to put the Kerry-Bush debate into human terms...

» Continue reading "Love Amid the Ruins: A Modern Parable"

Posted by William Cohen at 2:29 PM

September 24, 2004

RNC Ushers In 'Willie Horton Phase' Of Campaign

I heard the rumor, but hoped it wasn’t true! I can understand such outrageous lies coming from the Evangelical Christian wing of social Conservative Republicans, even brazenly announced through their vast television network. And, it is certainly in line with the increasing barrage of baseless charges, ricocheting through the echo chamber of Conservative radio.

» Continue reading "RNC Ushers In 'Willie Horton Phase' Of Campaign"

The Problem of Iraq

We're there. The Bubble is burst, the die is cast, the pooch is screwed, and our collective neck (or whichever body part you prefer) has been stuck out. There is no way to undo the whole bloody mess, and that is not the issue.

There are actually two issues now- the responsibility and the consequences. The optimism that some of the more partisan of the Republicans would like to impose on the nation's mood is a denial of both issues.

» Continue reading "The Problem of Iraq"

No Islam or Cats Allowed

Will someone pinch me and help me wake up? I am having this nightmare about our government running amuck and keeping people out of this country because they disagree with some of its policies. Did we actually authorize it to behave this way? Is this the action of a government by and for the people in this nation today? Are we that afraid of a singer who no longer sings because his faith in Islam will not allow him to do that any more?

» Continue reading "No Islam or Cats Allowed"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 7:40 AM

September 23, 2004

Kerry On Iraq

John Kerry's speech at New York University on Monday was probably the most important speech he's made so far. Kerry effectively introduced himself at the Democratic convention and established himself - according to polls - as an effective leader in the war on terror. Kerry "is viewed by 52 percent of all voters as better able to serve as commander in chief, while 44 percent back Bush."

» Continue reading "Kerry On Iraq"

September 22, 2004

Memogate Mass Distraction

I was at first startled, but then realized why all the WatchBlog Bush apologists got snippy, and abandoned ship on the Killian Memogate non-scandal debate. You see, the singular contentious bullet point centers on the veracity of the information contained in the probably bogus (yet, still alleged) Killian memos. While searching for a relative link, I found most Bush blogs still totally obsessed and bravely focused on the document forgery angle.

» Continue reading "Memogate Mass Distraction"

September 21, 2004

The First Meme War?

One of the scariest things about terrorism is that it appears to be senseless and irrational. Why would anyone deliberately kill himself by flying into a building? Who could conceivably benefit from killing innocent schoolchildren? Why on earth would Iraqi insurgents deliberately target aid workers that are trying to rebuild their country? Irrational actions are always scary, since they're impossible to predict it and hence prevent.

I think that the 9/11 terrorist acts, and many subsequent ones, are not irrational, when put in the proper context. I think the "war on terror" can be understood as a conflict between memes.

» Continue reading "The First Meme War?"

Posted by William Cohen at 5:04 PM

September 20, 2004

Why Not 5 Minute Political Ads?

Once in a great while, a 30 second political ad on TV actually informs, or at least says something substantive that needs being said. But way more often, regardless of whether I support the candidate or not, I roll my eyes at the level they stoop to in their attempts to sway a voter, pound a point, or misleadingly smear an opponent.

» Continue reading "Why Not 5 Minute Political Ads?"

Brits Reprioritize

On the campaign trail, President Bush proclaims Afghanistan as a success in the war on terror. But last Friday, he quietly put Afghanistan on a list of major drug producing countries, "Despite good faith efforts on the part of the central Afghanistan government, the president reported his concerns about the increased opium crop production and the government's lack of capacity to prevail in the provinces."

» Continue reading "Brits Reprioritize"

September 19, 2004

Fear is our Guide

We have finally given in to the worst of our impulses in the search for leadership. For the first time in my life we are actually electing a candidate based on our fear not our hope for a better nation. By this point in the campaign I genuinely dislike both of the men running for President from the major parties.

» Continue reading "Fear is our Guide"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 11:54 AM

Upholding Principles of Democracy

Our President should listen to his own words!

"As governments fight the enemies of democracy, they must uphold the principles of democracy."

» Continue reading "Upholding Principles of Democracy"

September 18, 2004

Pass The Bush Lemon Law!

Three news items I came across recently, cerebrally converged to spark speculation of what a Bush second term might look like – and, it ain’t pretty. If it turns out that the needed number (but, not necessarily majority) of the American electorate, buys the impressive ‘bait and switch’ conjured up by the boys at RoveVision, they might want to check the warranty’s fine print, first.

» Continue reading "Pass The Bush Lemon Law!"

Realism, Not Pessimism

I'm a pessimist. At least that's what they tell me.

Truth is, I'm actually a bit of an optimist. I still believe we can win this war. That takes an awful lot of optimism if you're actually paying attention to the news. Some don't choose to do that, they choose to believe that reconstruction efforts are going fine, and that any day, the citizens of Iraq will realize how grateful they should be, and stop shooting at us.

Or maybe this administration will get realistic about what's going on in the country. Could happen.

» Continue reading "Realism, Not Pessimism"

Fantasy World Of Spin

President Bush has been painting a rosy picture of life in Iraq after the invasion (which Kofi Annan just reluctantly admitted was illegal), assuring Americans that "there's [sic] ongoing acts of violence," but, "Iraq has got a strong Prime Minister and national council, and national elections are scheduled in January. The world is changing. Freedom is on the march."

» Continue reading "Fantasy World Of Spin"

September 17, 2004

Cheney Throws Chair at Heckler

Cleveland resident Ivana Gethit says that she wanted to make sure she got a good seat at the Bush-Cheney campaign rally so she could give the Vice President “some good-natured ribbing”. Unfortunately, her shouted question “Where’s Osama?” provoked Cheney to throw a chair, labeled “A Compassionate Agenda for Strong Times”, in her direction. Bouncing off of the head of the local spelling bee winner, the chair struck her in the nose.

» Continue reading "Cheney Throws Chair at Heckler"

Posted by Woody Mena at 9:27 AM

Electoral Reform

While campaign finance reform has gotten a lot of well-deserved attention in the last several years, other types of reform have gotten much less attention, in spite of the fact that they could have widespread support. Two Democratic Congressmen, Brian Baird of Washington and Gene Green of Texas, have teamed up this week to introduce a Constitutional Amendment that would do away with the Electoral College and install our Presidents by direct popular vote.

» Continue reading "Electoral Reform"

September 16, 2004

Beslan - Russia's Reichstag?

Feb 27, 1933, a fire started in the German parliament building, the Reichstag. The next day, Adolf Hitler, a quasi-democratically-elected national leader, convinced the nation to declare martial law and give him dictatorial powers.

Sep 1, 2004, a group of Chechen rebels stormed a school in Beslan, Russia, leading to the deaths of 300 innocent children. Ten days later, Vladimir Putin, a quasi-democratically-elected national leader, announced plans that essentially make him the only political power in Russia. Within days, Russian politicians universally praised Putin, despite their loss of power through the unconstitutional changes.

» Continue reading "Beslan - Russia's Reichstag?"

Posted by LawnBoy at 9:26 AM

Let’s Save the Democracy (In Indonesia)

Paul Wolfowitz is the greatest purveyor of Democracy since the founding fathers to read his article in the NY Times from September 16, 2004. Whoooeee; do we really have to put up with this crap for four more years? Men Women and Children stand back, get the neocons to the lifeboats first, the ship of democracy is listing and about to sink here but they need transportation to Indonesia to find a democracy to defend. Of course aren’t they changing the subject on us just a tad here? Or do I misremember that they sent a Chalabi to take the role of George Washington in Iraq; that was I believe just before he was discovered to be an agent of Iran and the devil incarnate.

» Continue reading "Let’s Save the Democracy (In Indonesia)"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 8:17 AM

Unfit For Command

When Iraqi insurgents killed four security contractors and dragged their bodies through the streets of Fallujah last March, President Bush unleashed a punitive Marine raid sparking a city-wide rebellion.

» Continue reading "Unfit For Command"

September 15, 2004

On The Rebound

Barring any contradictory developments, I think the Republicans have just been handed good evidence that that God sometimes punishes people by granting them their prayers.

You've got a credible source in Marian Carr Knox, who just tonight talked on 60 minutes concerning the documents, a little old lady who may nonetheless have shifted the course of an election, and has certainly changed the terms of the debate.

» Continue reading "On The Rebound"

September 13, 2004

Not in the Bag, or Even Near It

With all of the discouraging news lately on the election, some denizens of this column (the home team) already seem to be making plans to get Canadian citizenship. While it is almost undeniable that Bush has the lead at this point, it is far from clear how strong his position actually is. Let's look at the numbers.

» Continue reading "Not in the Bag, or Even Near It"

Posted by Woody Mena at 9:13 AM

September 12, 2004

9/11 Report Card

It's been three years since the 9/11 attacks. I said a little prayer today and reflected on what my government has done since then. It's report card time.

» Continue reading "9/11 Report Card"

September 11, 2004

A Presidency in Revolution

In the controversy over Bush's conduct in the Texas Air National Guard, the most important aspect of how the Bush team has confronted the issue is not whether or not the four documents shown on 60 minutes were forgeries, but something else.

» Continue reading "A Presidency in Revolution"

September 10, 2004

George W. Bush: 7 Minutes of Unfit Command

It is a mainstay of TV’s situation comedy formula, a story line familiar to generations of Nielsen households. A primary character expresses overconfidence, and is dismissive when questioned about their preparedness for an upcoming momentous event. Fast forward to said pivotal scene, and we find the character pale and speechless, sporting the proverbial ‘deer in the head lights’ stare, as the hilarity ensues.

» Continue reading "George W. Bush: 7 Minutes of Unfit Command"

Oil and Terror and Storms, Oh My!

Not to diminish how ugly things can get or any of the losses people suffer in summers like these. But, no matter what we see before it is over the number of dead and injured will not exceed the number of people killed annually from more mundane causes. First of all, high oil prices don’t really kill many people, not unless you count the victims of various kinds of slaughter imposed on them by horrible governments wanting to control the wealth oil brings.

» Continue reading "Oil and Terror and Storms, Oh My!"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 2:41 PM

September 8, 2004

Four Digits and No Excuses

A thousand dead. Republicans are right that over the course of history, there have been bloodier wars. But that's history, and distant history at that. In the three decades since Vietnam, it's the largest death toll we've had.

I keep hammering this point, because in many ways, it's what makes me want to see Bush gone the worst. I have always been proud of those who've served their country honorably. To see over a thousand of those people dead for a pre-emptive war we can no longer say had a threat to pre-empt in the first place is a great tragedy.

» Continue reading "Four Digits and No Excuses"

The Three Monkey Government

Our old friends in the government are back; you know them, they are old friends, Hear no evil, See no evil, Speak no evil. They are roaming the halls of Congress and working in the highest levels of the Bush Administration to make our country safe from the possible terrors of a Kerry Administration. One of them looks a lot like Cheney, and it isn’t Speak no evil.

» Continue reading "The Three Monkey Government"

Posted by Henri Reynard at 9:45 AM

The Stepford Party

OK, who knows what the Republican Party stands for? If you raised your hand, I'm hard pressed to know how you do. You can find complete copies of the Democratic Party Platform all over the web, but you can't find the GOP Platform anywhere.

» Continue reading "The Stepford Party"

Texans For Truth

No doubt, you may have heard the buzz! Well, here it is – Texans For Truth. Created by the online political activist organization – The: 30 second TV ad called ‘AWOL’, features Robert Mintz who served with George W. Bush in the 187th Air National Guard. Mintz was on base during the time Bush claims he was there. Mintz has no recollection of ever seeing Bush.

You can both view the ad, and contribute to get it on the air!

Cheney Drops a T-Bomb

Dick Cheney apparently didn’t get the memo that Dubya is cruising to victory, because his latest claim almost reeks of desperation:

It's absolutely essential that eight weeks from today, on November 2nd, we make the right choice, because if we make the wrong choice then the danger is that we'll get hit again, that we'll be hit in a way that will be devastating from the standpoint of the United States, and that we'll fall back into the pre-9/11 mind-set, if you will, that in fact these terrorist attacks are just criminal acts and that we are not really at war.
» Continue reading "Cheney Drops a T-Bomb"

Posted by Woody Mena at 12:07 AM

September 6, 2004

An Exercise of Unmitigated Gall

I have this suspicion, that those regular readers of my weblog (maybe WatchBlog, too), worry I have an unhealthy obsession with Fox News Channel. Yes, I am well versed in their vast catalog of documented partisan machinations, and yes, I purchased the Outfoxed DVD documentary, and have subsequently shared it with my circle of politically engaged friends. However, the incidents of outrage that I’ve personally viewed, investigated and then wrote about are actually the result of nominal periods spent watching TV - a length dependent on my threshold for Fox’s brazen partisan manipulation of the news.

» Continue reading "An Exercise of Unmitigated Gall"

Caveat Pre-Emptor

First, let me get this obligatory White House Response out of the way:

John Kerry is flailing about making baseless attacks founded on the assertions of a failed presidential candidate.
-The Bush-Cheney Campaign

Care to find out what hit the fan this time? Read on.

» Continue reading "Caveat Pre-Emptor"

September 5, 2004

Integrity, Above All Things

I don't despair at Bush's new lead. Not at all. This what we were told to expect, and what we could expect from a convention that revived the old mythology of Bush's leadership. Despite the nervousness of some party members, I know one thing that gives me peace as I face the two months ahead- the truth of what Bush has done is on the Democrat's side. Bush can speak of his persistence, but that persistence has been carried out to foolish ends, and we must remember those if our election is to be one carried out with integrity.

» Continue reading "Integrity, Above All Things"

September 3, 2004

A Presidency of Terror

Be afraid. Be very afraid. Fear John Kerry. Fear new leadership. Fear our allies. This is the Republican Party Platform. When did the War on Terror become a War of Terror?

The constant message throughout the convention, the message the Republican party stayed almost robotically on is that Kerry is unfit to command, and not loyal to his country, that he's too sensitive with the terrorists, and cannot be trusted to fight with resolve against our enemies. Their message is that if we fight wars against Islamofascism abroad, we will not have to deal with it here at home.

» Continue reading "A Presidency of Terror"

No Public School Left Standing?

Two nights ago Laura Bush told us of "unprecedented levels of funding" for her husband's No Child Left Behind initiative. Clearly this was a response to the oft heard refrain that NCLB amounts to an unfunded mandate. So where are our federal Department of Education dollars now going? Is there truth to the shocking claims that No Child Left Behind is merely a piece of a sinister plot to leave no public school left standing? Perhaps the claims are overstated, but they strike me as worthy of more serious investigation at the least. As ever if you follow the trail of dollars, you're liable to uncover some truth that some would prefer to be hidden.

September 2, 2004

...and they say Bush talks funny

I was saddened and angered today to receive a bit of intra-office political spam today. One of my co-workers, L, forwarded an email ripping Kerry. I wasn't surprised by that part; L often sends emails directly from the RNC to the office. What surprised me were the sheer inanity of the accusations against Kerry and L's partisan blindness to what he had done.

I'm astonished that the level of political discourse has sunk so low that people are making up meaningless accusations like this and refusing to research them.

» Continue reading "...and they say Bush talks funny"

Posted by LawnBoy at 8:45 PM

Observations for the Night

One wonders why Zell Miller is still a Democrat when he clearly can't stand them. The man ought to be ashamed of himself. The Republicans ought to have known better. Zell Miller's speech, Ironically enough, may turn out to be the Patrick Buchanan speech of this convention. Only this time, it won't be the disagreement that's so damaging- it will be the agreement. If Zell is siding with the president, does it not stand to reason that Zell speaks on the president's behalf when he calls Kerry a traitor and questions the man's faith?

» Continue reading "Observations for the Night"

September 1, 2004

GOP Convention Day 2: It's A Total Gloss

Good speechwriters fit their speeches to the individuals who give them. Those seemed to be in short supply last night as the catchphrases and platform codewords were repeated by one disparate speaker after another. It seemed like Republicans were being reminded just what stands on issues they were required to take, what kind of attitudes needed to be maintained.

No longer a river in Egypt, denial is the centerpiece of the Republican leaderships bid to retain the presidency. And why not? The Bush administration can't honestly answer that things are better now than they were four years ago, or even three.

» Continue reading "GOP Convention Day 2: It's A Total Gloss"

Time to Hit the Panic Button?

In the last few days there has been a lot of Democratic handwringing about Kerry blowing the election by reacting inadequately to the Swift Boat allegations. I think this is based on a couple of questionable premises. The first dubious premise is that Kerry has been seriously damaged by the allegations. Let’s go to the polls.

» Continue reading "Time to Hit the Panic Button?"

Posted by Woody Mena at 9:03 AM