Progressive Programmer

Progressive Politics or idle geek banter. What's on my mind when I'm irked, intrigued, bored or up too late.

Location: Michigan, United States


progprog Jr

Ok. Posting will be thin (and has been) for a few days.

My wife and I are going to the hospital this morning so that she can have labor induced. This will be our 2nd child. Terrifying. Exhilarating. Having children is truly an adventure.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention


Bush the Gullible, Part Deux

Is Bush believing in an exile groups claims once again?. Cannonfire explores the possible source of the Administrations dirt on Iran. Could it be we're once again allowing ourselves to be duped by a single, sketchy source, despite mountains of valid, contradictory evidence?

I have no love for Iran. I had no love for Iraq. But how can the Administration chastise Newsweek for using a single source (for information that was corroborated to all but the smallest of details, and was NOT the reason for violent protests) when they themselves used and abused the Ahmed Chalabi connection with joy and fanaticism as he pushed them the evidence he wanted (and, apparently, may have done so for Iran)?

Simple. The Bushies just don't care about the contradiction. They don't care if everything they do is a walking example of hypocrisy. That each time they take action it oozes death-riddled irony. They just don't care.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention


Hellooooo, Orrin Hatch and Republicans are lying to youuuuuuuuuu

Hunter at dKos reminds of Kevin Drum's pointing out how hypocritical it is of the Republicans to piss & moan over Democratic "obstruction" by reminding us how blatant the rule changes... and reversals... have been from Orrin "Jackass" Hatch. Here's reversal 1 of 4, visit Kos or Washington Monthly for the rest of the hypocrisy:
Originally, after Republicans gained control of the Senate in the 1994 elections and Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch assumed control of the Judiciary Committee, the rule regarding judicial nominees was this: If a single senator from a nominee's home state objected to (or "blue-slipped") a nomination, it was dead. This rule made it easy for Republicans to obstruct Clinton's nominees.

I must confess that I added the "Jackass" above. As far as I know, no one has ever nicknamed Orrin Hatch "Jackass", but it seems fitting to name-call when our Democratic senators are being called "obstructionists".

Besides, I feel no sense of Hypocrisy when I call Hatch a Jackass. But, I know his innards must twitch all aflutter with the guilt of hypocrisy whenever he and his co-conspirators continue to attempt their coup d'etat of our courts system.

This one goes in the bomb, I think.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention

Saddam's Tightie Whities - Historic Question Answered

Boxers? Briefs? Gold-laden pvc leather?

Tightie Whities?

If unrelated violence were to ensue somewhere in the world, I can only expect that Scott McClellan and the Bush Administration will rush to the podium demanding a retraction of photographs bound to ....

What? Rupert Murdoch owns The Sun?
James Fallows of the Atlantic Monthly points out that most of Murdoch's actions "are consistent with the use of political influence for corporate advantage." In other words, he uses his publications to advance a political agenda that will make him money. The New York Times reports that in 2001, for example, The Sun, Britain's most widely read newspaper, followed Murdoch's lead in dropping its traditional conservative affiliation to endorse Tony Blair, the New Labor candidate. News Corp.'s other British papers, The Times of London, The Sunday Times and the tabloid News of the World, all concurred.

Well, if unrelated, random violence were to ensue somewhere in this galaxy, I can only expect that Scott McClellan and the Bush Administration will rush to the podium recommending everyone obtain a two-year subscription to the London Tabloid known for such newsbreaking as Jeri Haliwell having breasts, and

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention


Stem cells don't clone people, cloners clone people

The next time a Republican mentions either their opposition to stem cell research or their belief in the rights of gun owners and/or manufacturers, point out the idiocy of trying to hold both ideals:

  • Guns can be used as a lethal weapon.

  • People could use a gun as a lethal weapon.

  • Without a person, a gun is not lethal.

  • Therefore, no gun causes a death.

I'm paraphrasing, but now look at this:

  • Stem Cell research could lead to cloning.

  • Cloners could use stem cell research for cloning.

  • Without a cloner, stem cell research does not lead to cloning.

  • Therefore, all stem cell research causes cloning.

The arguments follow identical paths until the final item. Curious.

If they are for guns because people are responsible for their own actions, they can not fear cloning due to stem cell research. This will hurt the brains of your Republican foe, so do not be surprised if they revert to the, "Well, I think we should just carpet bomb the whole middle-east" argument, which I have heard more than once. They may also mention the Oil For Food Scandal, which is, of course, the darkest danger our nation faces today.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention

Of China and Inflation

I recently heard tell of W. doing some "sabre rattling" at the Chinese. Insisting that they cease to keep the Yuan pegged to the dollar.

I have also heard tell of a slowing interest from abroad in funding the US deficits by buying government securities. George W. wants your great-grandchildren to pay off his share of the debt after he and his have socked their money permanently behind a wall made possible by an abolished estate tax).

What I had not heard is that the US Government might be printing $20 billion a month to help make up the difference. Jerome a Paris has put together a lengthy post and references several other commenters, but the thing that really gives me the oh-shits is
Put simply, he says that the Treasury Dept. has cooked the books to the tune of at least 60 billion dollars, and that such manipulation puts in doubt all the slightly reassuring numbers that have come in recent months on the foreing<sic> debt holdings front - i.e. the apparent willingness of foreign central banks and investors to keep on buying US Treasuries and fund the US current account deficit and consumer binge.

Hmm. Republicans sure are good at maintaining that whole economy thing aren't they? Explain to me again why it is rich, fat-cat republicans vote for these schmucks? Oh, I remember, because of tax cuts and corporate handouts and America's pathetic ability to see the long-term.

Wasn't Bush calling himself the first MBA President back in 2000? What a doofus. He couldn't run a 2 bit oil outfit anywhere but into the ground, not sure what Republicans thought he would do differently when they elected him had the supreme court appoint him.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention

Bush keeps those evilcloners at bay

Bush makes it as hard as he can to get well in this country:

"I made very clear to Congress that the use of federal money, taxpayer’s money, to promote science which destroys life in order to save life — I’m against that,” Bush said. “Therefore, if the bill does that, I would veto it.”

I think he's really meaning to say, " promote science which creates life in order to save life...", because otherwise he just announced his opposition to the entire premise of the War on Terror and the Iraq war in particular. Could be he's too dim to realize his error, but I just think he doesn't really care if his arguments are cohesive for more than 5 consecutive minutes.

Nobody tell Hannity, or his head might explode.

Either way, after I'm broke from paying the country's debt and can't declare bankruptcy due to a catastrophic illness (caused by MTBEs made by a energy company whose rights to unencumbered profit are guaranteed) that stem cell research might have cured and affordable drugs might have made bearable, I think I might write a harshly-worded letter.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention

Whitest guy in America plays race card

Bill Frist, senate major(pain in the ass)ity leader, the whitest man in America, has now played the "race card" on this whole Filibuster issue, attempting to ensure the last shreds of checks & balances will be torn down under a flag of discrimination. As usual, he's missing the point.

Probably bolstered by thinking like this.

But isn't it more likely Reid is talking about the era in a different context than the racial one Frist leaps to so quickly? Isn't it more likely that Frist is diagnosing from a distance again? Isn't it, in fact, more likely that Frist would use a combination of a racial and religious card to mask his power grab as one cloaked in the good and the righteous? That would be typical Republican fodder.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention


Cannonfire has the scoop on Newsweek's "retraction"

It has got to be the single most mis-represented piece of news about a piece of news in a long long time.

Don't tell anyone at MSNBC, their FoxWagon would tip over.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention


He's a liar and a hypocrite in a tall, skinny, whacko package.

He is also more than willing to diagnose your diseases via satellite just as he did for Terri Schiavo.

Hmmph. Frist, Bush, and DeLay. It all makes so much sense as to how we could come to such a place. Does anyone honestly believe these three yokels need MORE power? Ugh. Don't answer that, Mr. Dobson.

The truth is stranger than fiction.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention

If Hannity read the first paragraph

I'm quite certain his head would implode. To point out to any Hannitized individual that Bush and the extreme Right are actually, literally, and according-to-polls-truly Out of the Mainstream, is not only difficult to manage, but the mental effect on the Hannitized zealots would probably be akin to crossing the streams.

Is anyone else developing a deep admiration for Harry Reid?

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention

Heads you're responsible, Tails I'm not

As the number of attacks on Iraqis and our troops each month in Iraq continues to go up, will anyone ever remember Al Qaqaa as a symptom of the Bush Administrations major lack of planning? Of Rumsfeld's pompous, only-a-citizen-would-fire-a-general-and-then-proceed-to-fuck-something-up-this-big lack of planning for the attack and its immediate aftermath?

Well, 380 tons isn't really THAT much, is it? It's only 760 thousand pounds or so, right?

Just curious. Cuz it sure seems like there are a lot of explosives over there. Those suffering from cognitive dissonance (or blatant fucking stupidity) think none of this can be based on planning. If that's true, then did someone start a factory? There's $8.8 billion missing that was "entrusted to the Coalition Provisional Authority", so maybe there was some spare cash lying around.

None of any of this is Bush's fault. The buck stops nowhere near anyone that Bush knows or talks to. The only person he ever "fired" tried to explain reality to him in reality-based-terms, and was fired for his honesty.

Isn't it ironic that Republicans preach personal responsibility but in practice they abhor the thought of Bush being held accountable for anything whatsoever? Well, Hypocrisy is their m.o. My surprise will eventually abate.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention

Hellooooo, McClellan is lying to youuuuuu.

Magorn over at dKos has some nice quotes of a testy exchange between Scott McClellan and some White House reporters.

My favorite portions:
Q: With respect, who made you the editor of Newsweek? Do you think it's appropriate for you, at that podium, speaking with the authority of the President of the United States, to tell an American magazine what they should print?
MR. McCLELLAN: I'm not telling them. I'm saying that we would encourage them to help --

Q You're pressuring them.

and it got better:
Q Back on Newsweek. Richard Myers, last Thursday -- I'm going to read you a quote from him. He said, "It's a judgment of our commander in Afghanistan, General Eichenberry, that in fact the violence that we saw in Jalalabad was not necessarily the result of the allegations about disrespect for the Koran."

He said it was "more tied up in the political process and reconciliation that President Karzai and his cabinet were conducting." And he said that that was from an after-action report he got that day.

So what has changed between last Thursday and today, five days later, to make you now think that those -- that that violence was a result of Newsweek?

and then:
MR. MCCLELLAN: Well, clearly, the report was used to incite violence by people who oppose the United States and want to mischaracterize the values and the views of the United States of America. The protests may have been pre-staged by those who oppose the United States and who may be opposed to moving forward on freedom and democracy in the region, but the images that we have seen across our television screens over the last few days clearly show that this report was used to incite violence. People lost their lives -

Not so fast, you lying bastard:
Q But may I just follow up, please? He didn't say "protest," he said -- he used the word very specifically, "violence." He said the violence, as far as they know from their people on the ground -- which is something that you always say you respect wholeheartedly -- it was not because of Newsweek.
MR. McCLELLAN: Dana, I guess I'm not looking at it the same way as you do

Exactly. In fact, no member of the Bush Administration EVER looks at ANYTHING the way anyone else does. This is a perfect example of a story used to deflect and defend the administration from ridiculous news.

Here you have proof that Bush and his Administration lied to take us to war, usurping the power to do so from the US Congress. Lo and behold, Newsweek publishes a story that happens to coincide with some violence in Afghanistan. Since no one ever pays attention to the bullshit Scottie spews until it impugns others, he uses Newsweek as his bitch. Michael Isikoff, a journalist that was calling for Bill Clinton's head, is now accused of hating America and supporting the terrorists and helping to incite a "riot", despite military commanders saying the violence was unrelated!

If only, if ONLY some reporters would ask some questions like this every day, perhaps they could gain some momentum against the iron curtain this administration lays down in front of dissenting reporting and difficult questions. Nothing makes them waffle more than unarguable facts, and there are MANY. Nothing makes them waffle more than having their own logic used against them (see Bill Frist on Filibusters, as one of many examples). For the facts are with the progressives more today than ever, in fact the facts are running scared from Bush for fear of further violation.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention

Women in combat?

Hmm, what to think of this.

There is no easy answer to this question right now.

If we are to pull women back from combat then we might help save them from harm's way. But if we pull them back we might push more troops into more-dangerous situations due to a decrease in troop strength.

At a time when our troops are spread so thin with trying to maintain the non-peace in Iraq, how can we consider diminishing troop strength? It's not like the National Guard can make up the entire difference.

With tactics like those being followed by the Iraqi "insurgency", we're already exposing them to horrible injuries and death just because there is no real "field" of battle in a war fought in the streets, so where can the line even be drawn?

With armed forces recruiting numbers coming up short every month, and dishonest tactics being adopted by our military recruiters to try and make up the difference, how can we afford to reduce our battle-ready forces?

But overall, how can we as a society expose women to the potential dangers of battle, or capture and torture? Is it feminist to think it should be up to them? Is it chauvinistic to think they shouldn't be put in that position? Is it a societal trait? Is it a societal positive or negative, if a society is willing to let its women fight and die? If the women are able and willing? What if they are forced via draft?

I can't answer any of these questions. But I know we wouldn't be asking them if W. and his idiot brigade of Chicken Hawks hadn't lied us into Iraq.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention

Kerry lost, but Bush and the Republicans are losers

And the American people are begrudgingly admitting as much, via atrios.

Bush Job Approval:
43 approve
50 disapprove

I wonder if Howard Fineman will stop talking about how popular Bush is. You can be a popular person and still be a blithering moron at running this country. Bush is exhibit A.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention


Inaugural post - ether, here I come.

I can't resist any longer.

I have resisted for some time. I have frequented other blogs and multiple news organizations (both progressive and conservative). I have tried to create a bomb and I have screamed at my radio upon hearing my millionth conservative half-truth, lie, hypocritical mental backflip and feckless, affected, doublespeak-laden, holier-than-thou diatribe during the he-said, she-said bullshit press coverage of what we are forced to call, thanks to the majority-holding Republican ass-clowns, "politics as usual".

In short, I have done, read, heard, watched, and seethed in, on, over, and about as many things as I can stand without saying my peace.

I resisted as long as I could.

I'm not liberal, I'm just paying attention