Saturday, September 25, 2004
Our man in Pakistan is handing it to BushCo on the War on Terror TM. President Musharraf told Paula Zahn that the world is less safe since invading Iraq and that the Battle for Freedom TM has been hurt. (Through Kos.)
I just checked in with Cal Pundit/ Political Animal for the first time, really, since he went to The Washington Monthly. Today he links to what may be BushCo's ultimate flip flop.
Does anyone in Kerry's camp know how to get on the InterWeb?
In the last couple years, we've seen lots of Nazi symolism associated with BushCo -- W. with a little mustache and the like. But it's also been circulating that W.'s granddad, Prescott, dealt with the Nazis, in fact made his fortune during the rise of this terrible monolith, and had his company's assets seized under the Trading With the Enemies Act. But for some reason, the story has never stuck. It has something to do, I believe, with the mythology around the presidency, and also the fact that W. is a Republican. If there were even a peep about old Grandpop Kerry having had a single brown shirt wrinkled up in the corner his closet, it would be all over the place.
Now the Guardian (the newspaper someone I consider rational once called anti-American) has a nice, long story about Prescott Bush and his dealings with I.G. Farben, Fritz Thyssen and others, using newly declassified documents.
Let's see if we can spread it around.
His business dealings, which continued until his company's assets were seized in 1942 under the Trading with the Enemy Act, has led more than 60 years later to a civil action for damages being brought in Germany against the Bush family by two former slave labourers at Auschwitz and to a hum of pre-election controversy.
The evidence has also prompted one former US Nazi war crimes prosecutor to argue that the late senator's action should have been grounds for prosecution for giving aid and comfort to the enemy.
Prescott Bush, a 6ft 4in charmer with a rich singing voice, was the founder of the Bush political dynasty and was once considered a potential presidential candidate himself. Like his son, George, and grandson, George W, he went to Yale where he was, again like his descendants, a member of the secretive and influential Skull and Bones student society. He was an artillery captain in the first world war and married Dorothy Walker, the daughter of George Herbert Walker, in 1921.
In 1924, his father-in-law, a well-known St Louis investment banker, helped set him up in business in New York [Brown Brothers Harriman] with Averill Harriman, the wealthy son of railroad magnate E H Harriman in New York, who had gone into banking.
The bank was set up by Harriman and Bush's father-in-law to provide a US bank for the Thyssens, Germany's most powerful industrial family.
By the late 1930s, Brown Brothers Harriman, which claimed to be the world's largest private investment bank, and UBC had bought and shipped millions of dollars of gold, fuel, steel, coal and US treasury bonds to Germany, both feeding and financing Hitler's build-up to war.
There is so much more to read, and I suggest you do. After his company's assets were seized, Bush went on to become a US Senator, proof that anyone can make it in America.
(Still, there will be many who simply refuse to believe it, and I believe this is the operative force in the erosion of the American politick: it has more to do withwhat people believe about themselves and their country than what congress or the president actually do. People will not see what they do not wish to see if it challenges their safe perceptions. Life cannot be another way.)
There remains some dispute, mostly through smoke blown by the Bushes and Harrimans I believe, as to whether they were active in their ownership of BBH and UBC. They say the businesses were owned by a Dutch bank, though no one seemed to know who owned that bank. There are murky waters all around, as one would expect with a story this potentially explosive. But there remain unsettling similarities between grandfather and grandson. Like Prescott, George W. made his first fortune during a time of war, when he dumped his stocks in Harken Energy just before his father invaded Iraq, and failed to report the trade to the SEC until after the Gulf War was over. His take? Over $800,000.00.
But this has been par for the course with W. hasn't it? He's had everything handed to him -- included the presidency -- and a man brought up with that much advantage, with that sort of entitled psychology mixed with a predeliction toward the almighty Jesus can almost be forgiven for his arrogance, greed and blindness. The last line from the Guardian article:
More than 60 years after Prescott Bush came briefly under scrutiny at the time of a faraway war, his grandson is facing a different kind of scrutiny but one underpinned by the same perception that, for some people, war can be a profitable business.
Maybe 60 Minutes will air an explosive exposé. Ahem!
Friday, September 24, 2004
This could never happen. Unless.....
This is exactly why we at People for the Prevention of President George W. Bush Getting Eaten By A Velociraptor are doing all we can to assure that this ancient threat never becomes a reality. Ever since the film Jurassic Park made dino-cloning possible, the spectre of a raptor attack has lurked just beyond the curtain. Some people are too precious to be evicerated by these deadly, prehistoric beasts. Are you doing enough to protect our president? I can't hear you. Seriously, speak up.
All right, anyway, it's something we all must ask ourselves.
... Kerry was playing bass in a freaking rock band! Hee-yah! (Thanks, Blake.)
Jesus those were some successful band mates. Lawyers, mostly, and Harvard grads. Of course they were rocking out in Concord, New Hampshire's St. Paul's, my hometown. And as you know, in New Hampshire, we live free or we goddam DIE!
Thursday, September 23, 2004
You didn't think it was possible. None of you did. Even the weird ones. And you've thought about a lot of weird stuff. But nothing so fantastically romantic as all this. Think Island of Doctor Moreau meets Man Ray meets the guy in the back of the room in Algebra class who smelled odd. This man should never be in a position of great power.
Explore but be careful: you might just fall in love.
Wednesday, September 22, 2004
Cat Stevens is in the Dead Zone, ladies and gentlemen, like so many others. I wonder if Christopher Walken dances for those in the Dead Zone.
Cat Stevens sang some nasaly but nice songs in the 70s. They are easily burned into your brain. Then he became a Muslim, and now he's throwing cocktail parties with Osama and the posse. So we had to boot his ass out 'da whole fuckin' nation, y'all.
Former pop singer Cat Stevens, a Muslim, was deported to Britain on Wednesday after U.S. officials said his activities could be "linked to terrorism" and his name was put on a U.S. no-fly list.
A law enforcement official who asked not to be identified said the United States had information that Islam, who visited the United States in May, had donated money to the militant Islamic group Hamas.
Islam was denied entry to Israel in 2000 after the authorities there accused him of supporting Hamas. The former pop star denied the charges and said his charitable donations were for humanitarian causes.
Among the charities he has supported are children affected by the wars in Bosnia and in Iraq as well as victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks against America, which he condemned.
Islam was the second high-profile Muslim in recent months to be barred entry to the United States. Swiss-based Islamic scholar Tariq Ramadan was prevented from taking up a lecturing post at Notre Dame University in Indiana in August after the U.S. authorities revoked his visa with no explanation.
So I guess it's a pretty wild world for Monsieur Islam ne Stevens ne Steven Demeter Georgiou, isn't it?. Ha! Aha! Har! I kill me!
This really is going a bit too far, isn't it? We've surpassed the Roman Empire in the absurdity of our paranoi and arrogance (and I would know, I'm reading I, Claudius, and, though George W. Bush has not yet appointed a horse to the senate, Ann Coulter is close enough, so...) This is a high point for lowest lows; a hi-lo. Add the deportation of bearded writers of the music for Harold and Maude to the witch hunt for Dan Rather's bloodied torso, and you have what begins to look like the Dead Zone.
George H.W. Bush wanted to be known as the Education President. It didn't quite work out. His son, however, certainly got a good education: though he mustered C's at Yale and Harvard, he obviously aced his exams at the School of Underhanded Business Practices. Harken, Halliburton, Enron are proud graduates, all. And now the president wants to teach our children firsthand what he has learned over the years.
We know BushCo is screwing over children at public schools across the country, but did you know he's also handing it to tax payers and college students?
For the last two years, student loan companies have been taking vigorous advantage of a loophole in federal law to receive big subsidies that Congress tried to retire more than a decade ago. As lenders have stepped up the practice, billing the government for more than three times as much as they did just three years ago, the Education Department has maintained that there is little it can do to stop them soon.
But the department has significantly more authority than it has chosen to use, the accountability office said yesterday, prompting members of Congress to accuse education officials of a costly neglect. This year alone, the subsidies could cost the government nearly $1 billion that many lawmakers, Democrats and Republicans alike, say should go directly to students.
"The report makes it clear that the department is sitting on its hands while billions of dollars are being diverted away from higher education programs to the banks," said Representative Chris Van Hollen, the Maryland Democrat who requested the study with Representative Dale E. Kildee, a Democrat from Michigan. "Every day that goes by more taxpayer dollars get drained."
We wouldn't want Bush to mistreat only one sector of the education market, would we? And these college kids, they gots to learn how life in the real world is, anyway. And why not pay the lending companies three times what they deserve? If it wasn't for them, afterall, most of these low-life teens who can't afford college out of their pockets wouldn't even be able to go away and learn how to hit gravity bongs and do keg stands. It's about life experience for the middle class, and, though some may complain, I say you can't put a price tag on that. Just ask an 18 year-old from Utica if that extra money for the lending companies is worth it so he can get head in the bathroom from the girl with the lazy eye.
I think we all know the answer.
God bless America.
Tuesday, September 21, 2004
And their service records. We may or may not have seen this list before, but here's a small reminder that those who yell loudest are usually the most cowardly. (For the record, I have not served in the military. Ever.)
Richard Gephardt: Air National Guard, 1965-71.
David Bonior: Staff Sgt., Air Force 1968-72.
Tom Daschle: 1st Lt., Air Force SAC 1969-72.
Al Gore: enlisted Aug. 1969; sent to Vietnam Jan. 1971 as an army journalist in 20th Engineer Brigade.
Bob Kerrey: Lt. j.g. Navy 1966-69; Medal of Honor, Vietnam.
Daniel Inouye: Army 1943-'47; Medal of Honor, WWII.
John Kerry: Lt., Navy 1966-70; Silver Star, Bronze Star with Combat V Purple Hearts.
John Edwards: did not serve.
Charles Rangel: Staff Sgt., Army 1948-52; Bronze Star, Korea.
Max Cleland: Captain, Army 1965-68; Silver Star & Bronze Star, Vietnam.
Ted Kennedy: Army, 1951-1953.
Tom Harkin: Lt., Navy, 1962-67; Naval Reserve, 1968-74.
Jack Reed: Army Ranger, 1971-1979; Captain, Army Reserve 1979-91.
Fritz Hollings: Army officer in WWII, receiving the Bronze Star and seven campaign ribbons.
Leonard Boswell: Lt. Col., Army 1956-76; Vietnam, DFCs, Bronze Stars, and Soldier's Medal.
Pete Peterson: Air Force Captain, POW. Purple Heart, Silver Star and Legion of Merit.
Mike Thompson: Staff sergeant, 173rd Airborne, Purple Heart.
Bill McBride: Candidate for Fla. Governor. Marine in Vietnam; Bronze Star with Combat V.
Gray Davis: Army Captain in Vietnam, Bronze Star.
Pete Stark: Air Force 1955-57
Chuck Robb: Vietnam
Howell Heflin: Silver Star
George McGovern: Silver Star & DFC during WWII.
Bill Clinton: Did not serve. Student deferments. Entered draft but received 311.
Jimmy Carter: Seven years in the Navy.
Walter Mondale: Army 1951-1953
John Glenn: WWII and Korea; six DFCs and Air Medal with 18 Clusters.
Tom Lantos: Served in Hungarian underground in WWII. Saved by Raoul Wallenberg.
Wesley Clark: U.S. Army, 1966-2000, West Point, Vietnam, Purple Heart, Silver Star. Retired 4-star general.
John Dingell: WWII vet
John Conyers: Army 1950-57, Korea
Dennis Hastert: did not serve.
Tom Delay: did not serve
House Whiip Roy Blunt: did not serve.
Bill Frist: did not serve.
Rudy Giuliani: did not serve.
George Pataki: did not serve.
Mitch McConnell: did not serve.
Rick Santorum: did not serve.
Trent Lott: did not serve.
Dick Cheney: did not serve. Several deferments, the last by marriage.
John Ashcroft: did not serve. Seven deferments to teach business.
Jeb Bush: did not serve.
Karl Rove: did not serve.
Saxby Chambliss: did not serve. "Bad knee." (This is the man who attacked Max Cleland's patriotism).
Paul Wolfowitz: did not serve.
Vin Weber: did not serve.
Richard Perle: did not serve.
Douglas Feith: did not serve.
Eliot Abrams: did not serve.
Richard Shelby: did not serve.
Jon Kyl: did not serve.
Tim Hutchison: did not serve.
Christopher Cox: did not serve.
Newt Gingrich: did not serve.
Don Rumsfeld: served in Navy (1954-57) as aviator and flight instructor.
George W. Bush: six-year Nat'l Guard commitment (in four).
Ronald Reagan: due to poor eyesight, served in a non-combat role making movies.
Gerald Ford: Navy, WWII
Phil Gramm: did not serve.
John McCain: Silver Star, Bronze Star, Legion of Merit, Purple Heart and Distinguished Flying Cross.
Bob Dole: an honorable veteran.
Chuck Hagel: two Purple Hearts and a Bronze Star, Vietnam.
Duke Cunningham: nominated for Medal of Honor, Navy Cross, Silver Stars, Air
Medals & Purple Hearts
Jeff Sessions: Army Reserves, 1973-1986
JC Watts: did not serve.
Lindsey Graham: National Guard lawyer.
G.H.W. Bush: Pilot in WWII. Shot down by the Japanese.
Tom Ridge: Bronze Star for Valor in Vietnam.
Antonin Scalia: did not serve.
Clarence Thomas: did not serve
Pundits & Preachers
Sean Hannity: did not serve.
Rush Limbaugh: did not serve (4-F with a 'pilonidal cyst.')
Bill O'Reilly: did not serve.
Michael Savage: did not serve.
George Will: did not serve.
Chris Matthews: did not serve.
Paul Gigot: did not serve.
Bill Bennett: did not serve.
Pat Buchanan: did not serve.
Bill Kristol: did not serve.
Kenneth Starr: did not serve.
Michael Medved: did not serve.
And there's another good resource over at the New Hampshire Gazette, the Chickenhawk Database. These cowardly men make us so proud with their anal cysts and other priorities. March on, thee.
Months and months ago I predicted that one of a number of things would happen before the election to help build public sentiment for a second Bush term. Reagan's death and the capture of Saddam Hussein have already happened. And now, following my most dramatic prediction, there's some noise about an assassination attempt on the President while he's in NYC to talk to the UN. Wouldn't that rally the nation?
The Secret Service clamped down on midtown last night to protect President Bush from a possible assassin armed with a hunting rifle.
Lawrence Ward, 59, left his upstate New York home Wednesday with a .30-30 lever-action hunting rifle in the trunk of his car, telling a neighbor, "I'm not coming back."
Inside his house in Bainbridge was a picture of Bush with the words "Dead Man" spray-painted near it, law enforcement authorities said.
Ward's ex-wife, Judith Ward, 59, who lives in Connecticut, told the Secret Service she thinks her former husband "is very dangerous and capable of killing someone and/or committing suicide."
She said Ward "is obsessed with weapons, [Oklahoma City bomber] Timothy McVeigh and the book 'The Dead Zone' - a novel about the stalking and attempted assassination of a presidential candidate," according to a Secret Service document
Of course he's obsessed with the Dead Zone! And, of course, Ward is a software engineer. He's also very unlikable with a criminal record and a creepy background in sexual perversions. He's balding with glasses and a mustache. Wonderful. The only thing that doesn't fit thus far is that he only has two names unlike the notorious Mark David Chapman, Lee Harvey Oswald and even Lee Boyd Malvo.
So is this preparation for something? Must we be reminded that our brave president is in constant danger of assassination, yet despite it all, he carries on courageously, surrounded by 250 police and secret service agents? What would happen if there was an attempt on his life? Well, all coverage of John Kerry would go down the toilet, save his stoic pronouncements about the sitting president's bravery and his warmest wishes for a speedy recovery. In short, it would put Kerry behind Bush and focus the country's attention both on the president's well-being and our own nation's precarious security situation... again.
And Bush would win in a landslide.
There are lots of crazy people out there and we don't even necessarily require any Parallax View underpinnings.
I hope not. Nor, incidentally, would I ever condone any act of violence on our President, or, really, anyone else.
Sunday, September 19, 2004
I can't find it. I got it in the mail yesterday, took it out to look at the decimals and dollar signs, and then put it somewhere retarded. Why does this happen so often? I get something in the mail and enter into this giddy delirium -- oh happy day, I've just received ----- in the post! Whatever will I do with myself?! -- and then, wandering aimlessly, I put it in some nook or another, a "safe" place from which, at the time of insertion, I believe it will be easily recoverable. Usually those "safe" places involve old tropheys, stuffed animals, stacks of CDs, magazines, hard-to-reach shelves, refrigerators, shoes, pockets (pant and backpack), and the floor.
Today I cannot find it in any of these standbys. Then the paranoia sets in: did I throw it out? Could it have been burned? Of course I never throw it out, and it's usually in my dresser, but that never stops me from looking through the garbage, does it? No. It doesn't.
Well, today is different. I will not look through the garbage today. No way.
I already did, by God. I cannot lie to you.