Saturday, October 28, 2006

Jim Webb Gives Great Radio Response to Bush

Here's the link:

James Webb Takes On George Allen

"I have written about what I have seen and that is the duty of a writer," Webb said to 300 cheering supporters during a rally at a Fairfax County middle school. "Maybe George Allen doesn't understand that because I'm told George Allen doesn't read books."

Read more here:,0,4930428.story?coll=dp-headlines-virginia

All Spin Zone: Bill O'Reilly Spins in His Own Orbit

With sophistry, Bill O'Reilly tries to pull the wool over Dave Letterman's eyes by trotting out Ansar Al Islam, a terrorist group in Kurdish territory. The group, headed by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, was not there with "permission" of Sadam Hussein, as O'Reilly claims. The Northern Territories were in the no-fly zone, patrolled by the US and British since the 1991 war. Saddam had no control of the area. Sadam and Zarqawi were enemies. And yet O'Reilly tries to claim that Sadam was tiled to Zargawi and Al Qaeda, pre-9-11. O'Reilly either needs to do his homework or, more likely, stop intentionally misleading Americans. But most of all, he shouldn't get away with pulling rank over Letterman with false evidence.

Literalist George Allen Thinks Novels are Real

We didn't need further proof that George Felix Allen is an idiot. But we've gotten it anyway, up from and center. It seems George Felix Allen, Jr. thinks novels are real. Talk about jug-headed literalism. But furthermore, this member of the bookburning party, wants to blast books from a highly aclaimed author. It's not that he's read the novels, mind you. But he wants you to critique them out-of-context. (Is there any other way for the GOP)?

First, the Allen team trotted out a few passages from the 2 million word context of Webb's body of work, which has received high critical acclaimed. Webb has not only received stellar reviews for his work (see below), but also an Emmy for reporting and a movie made from one of his novels (Terms of Engagement, staring Samuel Jackson and Tommy Lee Jones).

Here is a sampling of review comments about two of Webb's novels:

Review Comments on Fields of Fire
“In my opinion, the finest of the Vietnam novels.”
— Tom Wolfe

“Few writers since Stephen Crane have portrayed men at war with such a ring of steely truth.”
— The Houston Post

“A novel of such fullness and impact, one is tempted to compare it to Norman Mailer’s The Naked and the Dead.”
-- The Oregonian

"In swift, flexible prose that does everything he asks of it, Webb gives us an extraordinary range of acutely observed people.... Fields of Fire is a stunner."

"Few writers since Stephen Crane have portrayed men at war with such a ring of steely truth."
The Houston Post

About Lost Soldiers:
From Publishers Weekly
"Webb's cultural and political portrayal of Vietnam 25 years after the war's end is delivered with such bold strokes and magical detail that it really doesn't matter that the plot itself is relegated to the backseat. This is a highly personal and empathetic look at today's Vietnam, a land of misery and inequity, yet one still vibrantly alive. "

"James Webb's new novel paints a portrait of a modern Vietnam charged with hopes for the future but haunted by the ghosts of its war-torn past. It captures well the lingering scars of the war, and exposes the tension between the dynamism of a new generation and the invisible bondage of an older generation for whom wartime allegiances, and animosities, are rendered no less vivid by the passage of time. A novel of revenge and redemption that tells us much about both where Vietnam is headed and where it has been.
--Senator John McCain

A masterpiece, one of the most poignant and powerful novels of this generation ... Lost Soldiers is one of those rare books that is not only a beautifully realized literary triumph but also a crackling good page-turner. Its seamless blend of mystery and intrigue, with its subtle truths of history and culture and its stories of love and honor played out by unforgettable characters, is nothing short of miraculous. Jim Webb did not set out to write a healing book, but that is what he has done. I suspect Lost Soldiers can bring my country together after years of debate and division ? and it took a warrior to write it. You will come away a different person after you've read it."
-- Walter Anderson, Chairman and Publisher, Parade Magazine

In Harrisonburg yesterday, showed Allen snidely saying: James Webb "says he's a writer...," as if Webb isn't really. But worse, Allen and his twisted book burners, seems to think that a writer is necessarily just like the fictitious characters he portrays and that all scenes are ones condoned as OK by the author. Webb does write context according to things he observed during the Viet Nam war and afterward. While historical events and occurrences create the context for Webb's stories, they are fiction.

Additionally, Allen suggests anything earthy is smut. By extension, perhaps Allen is suggesting that the steamy passages of the Bible render it literally smut? Hint: They are NOT!) These Allen folks have no problem selectively using whatever they want as bogus fictitious evidence for whatever they want.

As the passages above indicate, even john McCain extoled the virtues of Lost Soldiers. The book in question, Lost Soldiers, contains a passage about an obscure practice in rural Cambodia. James Webb wrote about it as a part of the context of that period and place. But context doesn't matter with Allen and the GOP. With them its distortion, convolution, and deception. John Grisham has lambasted the Allen attack.

In remarks before the media yesterday, George Allen said that Webb "says he's a writer," as if that's not true. He's won journalism awards, and an Emmmy for one of his documentaries. He's had a screenplay made intoa movie entitled Terms of Engagement with Samuel Jackson and a host of outstanding actors.

But should Allen wish to pursue this, there's a plethora of racy passages in prominent GOP writers, including Lynn Cheney, Newt Gingrich, Scooter Libbey and others. Read about it here:

Finally, you know Allen is out gas and apopleptic over new polls showing Webb ahead. Poor George.

Resources for this story can be found at WebbforSenate (here), The Washington Post (here), Waldo Jaquith (here), RaisingKaine (here), and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (here).;jsessionid=3404B39F4FF6EDAC6604DEAD453FA545?diaryId=5469

Friday, October 27, 2006

Economy Said to be Weakest in Three Years

Great job, Brownie, er, I mean Bushie!

Read about it here.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

More Olbermann

Read it here.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

What's An Endorsement Worth?

There was much ado on conservative blogs yesterday about the upcoming John Warner endorsement of Allen last night. Given that John Warner (and his buddies John MCCain and Linday Graham) keep conjuring up phony departures from the Bush agenda, only later to give Bush everything he wants (torture, the end of habeus corpus, unfettered spying on Americans, Alito/Roberts,and now, a pretend alternative to Bush's Iraq policy), John Warner's posturing with Allen means little.

John Warner used to stand for something. You could often count on him as a voice of reason. Not any more. Like the other so-called moderates in the GOP, there is no issue important enough to stand up for in the final wheelings and dealings. But since Warner and McCain are what now passes for within-party "loyal opposition," however weak or imaginary, they are all Bush and Allen have for giving the GOP some credibility before Nov. 7th, if only for the camera.

Interestingly, however, if the name Warner means something, increasingly, it is Mark Warner who has that cornered. As Lowell over at Raising Kaine points out (read it here):

This weekend's Washington Post poll provided "favorable/unfavorable" ratings for key Virginia politicians. Not suprisingly, the most popular Virginia politico is Mark Warner, at +53 percentage points (73%-20%). Next is Tim Kaine, at +44 percentage points (67%-23%). In third place is John Warner at +41 percentage points (66%-25%). Then comes Jim Webb at +16 percentage points (53%-37%). Finally, last but not least is George Allen, at +10 percentage points (53%-43%).

Mark Warner has the respect of voters in Virginia. He'll be traveling the state with Webb. And voters will know which Warner endorsement really means something.

And, as Webb volunteers inform more and more voters of the facts of the race, and voters in turn learn of the Allen Team's disinformation, George Allen is in for a real awakening. We don't need any more flim-flam candidates, flim-flam staged disagreements, or disinformation tours. And (John) Warner/Allen won't cut it.;jsessionid=B3F4BC58DCAE30AE269C6696EDBCFB97?diaryId=5195

Monday, October 16, 2006

Now Two Studies Show Deaths of Iraqis May Top 650,000

We aren't told these numbers by the administration because George W. Bush does not care about the loss of innocent lives, whether of our own troops or innocent Iraqi civillians.

Since the media isn't allowed to photograph returning troops, or the deceased's coffins, from Iraq, there's also no way to confirm that we are hearing the real numbers of American casualties. Those who've visited injured vets in hospitals often report that the numbers of injured appear far greater than we've been told. All of this matters. Our men and women are not pawns in some crazy chess-game. They are not to be trifled with. They are not for the adventures and misadventures of our saber-rattling leaders. They are not on this earth to be misused by our leaders in countries which posed no, or little, threat. The way we are headed, it soon will be us against the world. And in the endless array of "enemies" and "evildoers" Bush sees, but can't evidence, unfortunately we Americans are in for increasingly difficult times.

But also extremely troubling are two recent studies concerning estimates of Iraqi civillians lost to "collateral damage." And innocents matter, no matter where they are from.

First there is the presigous Lancet Study:

Then comes the Bloomberg School of Public Health at the Johns Hopkins Universities.

FiredogLake on "Things That Go Hmmmmmm..."

Over at FiredogLake (read it here), there's an interesting comment on the "coincidence" that a verdict in the Sadam Hussein trial is expected Nov. 5th. As FiredogLake, says, HMMMMM...

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Olbermann Does It Again (and Again and Again).

Last Thursday, Keith Olbermann scored this one (read it here):

He spoke about Bush and the Axis of Evil on Oct. 9, 2006. Read it here.

And also on Monday, Oct. 9th, Olbermann took on the Bush administration for eliminating habeas corpus. Read it here.

Too much good stuff there to miss!

Bush's October/November Surprise

Here are some readings on Bush's looming October Surprise. Write your Congressman or woman, and your US Senator (unless he or she is a blithering fool like George 97% Allen).

Friday, October 13, 2006

Mark Their Names

On the end of "Habeas Corpus," as we once knew it, Garrison Keillor says:

"None of the men and women who voted for this bill has any right to speak in public about the rule of law anymore..."

Mark their names: Alexander, Allard, Allen Bennett, Bond, Brownback, Bunning, Burns, Buss, Carper, Chambliss, Coburn, Cochran, Coleman, Collins, Cornyn, Craig, Crapo, DeMint, DeWine, Dole, Domenici, Ensing, Enzi, Frist, Graham, Grassley, Gregg, Hagel, Hatch, Hutchinson, Imhofe, Isakson, Johnson, Kyl, Landrieu, Lautenberg, Lieberman, Lott, Lugar, Martinez, McCain, McConnell, Menendez, Murkowski, Nelson of Florida, Nelson of Nebraska, Pryor, Roberts, Rockefeller, Salazar, Santorum, Sessions, Shelby, Smith, Specter, Stabenow, Stevens, Sununu, Talent, Thomas, Thune, Vitter, Voinovich, Warner.

Read the whole commentary here:

Bush Defines (and Redefines) His Job for Us

This week Jon Stewart of The Daily Show summarized Bush being Bush, at his most elementary. Here are some of Bush's utterances on what his job involves:

"My job is to remind them of the war on terror..."
"My job is to be on the lookout..."
"My job is to stay focused."
"My job is to look at the world the way it is..."
"One of the hardest parts of my job is to connect Iraq to the war on terror."
"Part of my job is to educate the American people."
The job of the president is "to shake hands and smile."
"My job is not to lead one party."
My job is "not to be complacent."
"My job is "not to worry about short-term attitudes."
"My job is to lead."
(My job is) "to achieve things for the American people."
(My job is) to "make decisions I think are right."
"My job is to do my job."

Enough said.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Raising Kaine: Warner is Out (for 2008)

Read about it here. And here.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Donald Rumsfeld Sat on the Board of Directors of Firm Providing Reactors to N. Korea.

Make no mistake. N. Korean behavior must be addressed by the world community. However, the blame Clinton crowd is fast at work blaming Clinton for the current N. Korean crisis. (How long has Bush been in office and they're still doing it.) Never mind that George W. Bush has alternately inflamed and neglected the situation there.

Now we learn that Rumsfeld appears to have been on the board of directors of a company providing nuclear reactors to N. Korea. However, according to the Center for American Progress, a few years after participating in the deal:

"Rumsfeld attacked the concept of selling reactors to North Korea. In a speech at the Heritage Foundation, Rusmfeld said, "Our present nuclear agreement with North Korea unfortunately does not end its nuclear menace. It merely postpones the reckoning, with no assurance that we will know how much bomb-capable material North Korea has."

Read more at the jump.,2763,952289,00.html

George Allen Sings

This footage has been available for a while, but it seems many haven't seen it, so I'll post it again. Here he George Felix Allen, Jr., for all his retro, Confederacy-loving good-ole-boy-ness.

Go to the jump.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Another Great Commentary by Keith Olbermann
Read it here:

Six excellent Keith Olbermann Commentaries (and one investigative presentation): Here are the others.

1. Feeling Morally Confused? On Rumsfeld's linkage of critics to Nazi appeasers. Read it here.

2. Have You no Decency, Sir! On Bush joining in with Rummy and the neo-McCarthyites. Read it here.

4. Apologize, Mr. President. On Bush telling Americans "that it's unacceptable to think…" here.

5. A Textbook Definition of Cowardice. On Bush dispatching his cronies to assail Clinton on terrorism-- when Bush did nothing to prevent 9-11 here.

6. This is an investigative report refuting Bush administration claims that they did much of anything to prevent 9-11. This is the best refutation on the networks or cable news, courtesy of Read it here.

Blatant Bias at the Jim Lehrer News Hour.

Now comes a new study by (Read about it here.) That organizations's Extra publication presents data from its guest list during the six-month period spanning October 2005 through March 2006.

Among the most prominent findings: Public interest groups accounted for only 4% of the sources. Current and former government officials and military officials accounted for 50% of the sources. Male guests outnumbered women 4 to 1. 72% of guests were white mailes, while only 6% where women of color. People of color were only 15% of sources. Partisan Republicans outnumbered Dems 2 to 1. "Stay the course" sources outnumbered those advocating another way were 5 to 1.

The findings confirmed the results of FAIR's 1990 study of the NewsHour, which found that the PBS news program offered up biased guest booking.

The Bumbling, Pathetic Rice Keeps on Keepin' On

Just when you think Condi Rice couldn't do much worse, she's at it again, messing up the Middle East, deceiving about what she knew and when she knew it, and making a mockery of the Dept. of State. So much for statesmanship. Tongue-tied at every opportunity, and with a memory worse than most octogenarians, she's spouts almost as much doublespeak as Mr. Bush-speak himself.

Give her and Rummy the boot. More useless, but destructive, cabinet secretaries have never been in office. Read an article about Rice's misadventures here.'s_lost_credibility.php

Hastertgate: GOP Tactics for Surviving Their Own Deceit and Neglect

Part One: The GOP, and it's Right Wing Media--When the Facts Don't Support Them, They Just Make Stuff Up.

Keith Olbermann named Roger Ailes, who runs FOX News like an extension of the White House (the official talking points get circulated each AM), runner up in the weekly "Worst Person in the World." (The faux "award" goes to Faux News. How appropriate!)

Poor Bill O'Reilly and FAUX News. They just couldn't help themselves. It's just too much to take that their own fearless leader in the House is in deep --well, kaka. Last night, Bill O'Reilly ran a story about US Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL). Fit to be tied, Repugs' at FAUX News thought that their only recourse was to -- you guessed it, re-label Foley a Democrat. And there it was... Foley's name appeared with the designation D-FL beneath it. Fortunately, Ole Bill's ratings are not so hot. It seems viewers prefer Olbermann to O'Reilly's nonsense. But you've got to ask, are these guys for real? It's good that we don't depend on this bunch for real moral education.

Meanwhile, the "accountability police" aren't accountable. And the GOP shows itself for the party of corruption that it is.

Read about it at The GOP, and it's Right Wing Media--When the Facts Don't Support Them, They Just Make Stuff Up.

Part Two: Blame The Media, Bill Clinton and George Soros (But Not Themselves)

Today, Dennis Hastert claimed that he takes responsibility for the Foley scandal, except that he doesn't. While saying one thing out of one side of his mouth, he said the opposite from the other side. Pretty amazing stunt when you think about it. No sooner were the words "accept responsibility" out of his mouth than he blamed everyone else. It's Bill Clinton's fault, the media's fault, and George Soros' fault. The absurdity of this claim needs and deserves no comment.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Over In Virginia's First Congressional District, Shawn O'Donnel Has Identified 12 Core Values of a Democrat.

Here's O'Donnell's list:

--Belief in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights as a Living Document of inclusion not exclsuion.

-- Life, Liberty and the Persuit of Happiness for All

--Fairness and Equal Opportunity for All

--Protection of the Environment

--Quality Public Education

--Economic Justice for All

--Living Wage Jobs

--Social Security

--Fiscal Responsibility

--Workers' Representation and Collective Bargaining

--Affordable Health Care, Housing, Utilities and Food

--Homeland Security and Strong National Defense

Until the current administration took office, citizens assumed these were American values. With the exception of the crowd running the show in DC, they are. It just goes to show: It's time to take the country back and re-dedicate ourselve to fostering these values once more.